Essential Items for the Nursery
We are expecting our second child any day now and I have to admit that it is a very exciting time. It also has a tendency to creep up on you and if not prepared well in advance can also catch you by surprise. It would be very possible in the busy lives we live today to put off the setup of our new baby's room until suddenly it’s too late. Remember, your child could come one, two or even more weeks early! If you're expecting your first child it’s also likely you will have no concept of just how busy those first few weeks and months will be. So I have put together a list of 10 things I would consider essential to have ready well before the due date.
1. Cot/Crib or Bassinet.
This is an obvious one. The new member of your household is going to need somewhere to sleep. Many parents have their child sleep in a bassinet or cradle for the first few weeks. This is fine but it still pays to make sure the larger cot is already in place and assembled as time will be hard to come by. Look for a cot that meets the relevant safety standards of your state.
2. Change Table
Another fairly obvious addition to the room. This is important and will save your back if the alternative is the floor or a bed. Be conscious of safety here. The less chance there is for your child to roll off the edge the better and never leave them unattended whilst up there. It’s also handy to get a change table with shelves underneath, you won't believe how many powders, creams, wipes and other items get used during those wonderful nappy changes.
3. Nappy Bin
This is a handy addition to any Nursery although not essential. The alternative is nappy bags or simply plain plastic bags. Either way you want something to separate that stinky stuff from the rest of the air in the room!
4. Hanging Mobile
This is more than just a pretty decoration in your child's room, it will help sooth them and stimulate their minds. There are a couple of options here, some clip onto the side of the cot but you can also get the traditional variety that attach to the ceiling. There is also the option of battery operated mobiles that both spin and play music. We have never tried one of these gadgets and have instead gone with more traditional wooden or handmade types but I can certainly see how they would be useful.
This is an essential. You will either go crazy buying all the cute little outfits or someone else will do it for you and by the time the baby has worn the clothes a few times you will be looking for the next size. The reason I suggest drawers is because your babies clothes will be very small and a wardrobe won't be much use for a few years. A nice chest of drawers or tall-boy is what you want, preferably stocked before he or she arrives.
6. Good block-out curtains
This is another essential that can easily be overlooked. Next time you get a chance, go into the nursery in the middle of the day, close the curtains/blinds and make sure its dark, really dark. Your child won’t just be sleeping at night they will sleep off and on at all hours. Now, in the first few weeks a newborn will pretty much sleep through anything, light, dark, a rock concert (trust me I’ve seen it!) but light will become a problem as the months go on and your baby begins to grow into a little toddler. This will especially be a problem if you live in a place where daylight savings is practiced in the summer months.
7. Paint & Decoration
This sounds obvious but let's face it, renovations are one of those things that just keep getting put off. It may be fun to go out and choose a cot and that perfect lamp shade but painting a room just ain't that much fun. This step is of course not necessary if you are happy with the room the way it is but just make sure you aren’t going to change your mind after the fact. You won’t want your precious little one sleeping in a freshly painted room.
8. Baby Monitor
Just in case you were wondering; these things are essential. They will allow you to put your baby down, leave the room and sit down with a cup of coffee, or better still get some sleep. Without the monitor you will constantly be listening out for your baby's cries and the last thing you want to do is creep back into their room only to wake them up after imagining you had heard them. They are also fantastic when visiting family or friends if you need to put your baby down for a nap.
9. Feeding Chair
When looking for a chair to sit in whilst feeding your baby there are a few things to keep in mind. If you are only going to bottle feed almost any chair will do. If you plan on breastfeeding you will want something with some back support and it may be best to seek some advice in this area. A cushion can also be useful to prop the baby up and give your arm some rest. Keep in mind you will be feeding every few hours and dragging the child out of his or her room just for a ‘dream feed’ is not ideal.
10. A whole lot of other stuff!!
There are plenty of small items you will need in the nursery when the little one comes along.
-Make sure you have bed linen to suit the season in which your child will be born.
-Have at least a few nappies for newborns in stock
-You can never have too many wipes so make sure you get a bulk pack or two
-Nappy Rash creams will be needed so getting some now won’t hurt
-A quality baby thermometer can be useful when you're not sure if they have a temperature
-The list goes on!
If you are expecting your first or your next child I wish you good luck. It is an amazing journey and will change your life for the better