Baby Gear Essentials
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Until your baby's neck muscles are strong enough (around three months and older), you need to have a reclining stroller. Choose one that has adjustable straps, wide wheels, and steers easily.
These are indispensable for keeping your baby close while freeing up your hands. Your baby likes them too - he or she loves the physical closeness, warmth, and listening to your heart beat. Choose a durable model that fits you snugly.
A newborn won't know the difference between a padded basket and an expensive crib, but safety makes a sturdy crib essential. Make sure it meets all the current safety standards, the slats are no more than 2-3/8 inches apart, and the mattress is firm. Along with the crib, be sure to buy sheets that were specifically designed for cribs, and that fit tightly and securely.
Bathtub or tub/sink liner
Baby bathtubs are inexpensive and great for containing a wet, squirmy baby and keeping him or her safe. A tub or sink liner is a large, thick sponge that cushions your baby against the hard tub or sink surface.
Changing Table or Pad
If you plan to have more children and will use it again, a full changing table is a worthy investment. However, if this will be your only child, consider a changing pad that fits on top of a regular table or chest of drawers. Regardless of which you choose, make sure it's sturdy and has a safety strap to prevent your wiggle worm from scooting off the table mid-change.
These versatile blankets can be used for warmth, swaddling, and catching or cleaning up spit-up... whatever baby brings your way.
You'll go through lots of burping cloths the first few months. How many you need depends on how often you plan to do laundry.
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