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As a new mom all over again, there are a few things I’ve learned to have around. If I can find a way to make life easier and help things go more smoothly, I’m all about it. And if you’ve had a newborn you know – smooth and easy aren’t always two words that describe this time in your life! There’s gross poop, sore body parts, attempting to run off of a few hours sleep, and perpetually dealing with some kind of bodily fluid.
This time of year in particular, it’s more important than ever to gift a new mom a little something special. With the holiday season in full swing and Christmas just under two weeks away, new moms definitely deserve to be spoiled. With that in mind, here are a few of my favorite goodies for new moms and newborns, to help make this time a little less chaotic.
Newborn and new mom gift basket:
My favorite gift idea for a new mom? A video monitor. The VTech VM341-216 Bear 2 Camera Full Color Baby Monitor to be precise. As I previously mentioned, sleep in those newborn days (and the months following) is not always easy to come by. Newborns have crazy wake / sleep cycles, and in the first few weeks and months, you have to make sure you’re waking them every two-ish hours to feed them.
That first month was such a blur with all the alarms I was setting. 10pm, 12am, 2am, 4am, 6am, 8am. It was exhausting! With the VTech VM341-216 Bear Video Monitor, I’m able to get a little peace of mind (and a little sleep!) so I can sleep when baby sleeps.
Another big bonus with having a video monitor, especially one with a color screen and night vision, is that I can hand off the monitor to my husband while I rest. That way he can keep an eye and ear on baby J, just in case.
VTech VM341-216 Bear Video Monitor
The VTech Bear Video Monitor is probably the cutest video monitor out there. It comes with a unique teddy bear shaped camera, as well as an additional standard camera. The teddy bear video monitor is an adorable addition to any baby’s nursery, and is perfectly gender neutral. I love that it coordinated so easily with our simplistic nursery design, and isn’t an eye sore!
One thing that makes this VM341-216 video monitor unique is the two way intercom. So not only can I listen to baby J, but I can talk back as well! The VM341-216 also has built in lullabies and soothing sounds to comfort baby J (and my toddler!) without having to step foot inside his room.
As a mom of two, I love that it came with a secondary camera.
I installed the additional camera in our toddler’s room to be able to watch and listen our for him as well. And how cool is it that I can switch back and forth between the two screens to keep an eye on both of them simultaneously?! When we have more babies, we can even add up to two more cameras! That means I can keep an eye on up to 4 different rooms at the same time with the VTech Bear Video Monitor. This would be awesomely helpful for moms of multiples!
Because both cameras have full color displays on a large screen, as well as automatic night vision, I get to see every sweet sleepy smile, and know exactly when one of my kiddos is waking. And thanks to digital transmission, I know my video will remain private and secure. Peace of mind is invaluable these days, and knowing that I can keep my newborn safe and sound, regardless of where I am, is amazing.
Newborn feeding chart:
Along with all the sleeplessness and constant waking to feed, comes some memory loss. It’s just a fact of life. One of the things I have the hardest time with is remembering which side I last nursed from! This sweet little newborn feeding chart is such an easy way to keep track. I customized it with a blue owl for my baby J, but I’ve included several other color and character choices so you’re sure to find one perfect for your nursery.
This is a great gift for new moms to help alleviate the “which side did I last feed from?” questions. All you need is a printer, a frame, and some dry erase markers. It couldn’t get any easier, and this newborn feeding chart fits into any room easily. If you want to switch things up, feel free to use this as a template, and create one of your own! I like using Canva for the prints I create, but there are a ton of great free options out there as well.
I keep mine right next to our rocking chair where I nurse J, so that I can lean over while nursing and make a few checks. That way I don’t have to try to keep track of what time his last feed started, and which side he last nursed from. I also included a space to mark ounces baby ate, so if you or your partner are bottle feeding you can keep track of that as well!
AND, for when those days and nights are seeming extra long, and you’re wanting your partner to read your mind, there’s a space for that too! Do you need to hear “you’re beautiful”? Or “you are more than a milk machine?” Check that off! That way your significant other can see what you need to hear, and hopefully go along with your request.
Swaddle blankets are like the MacGyver of baby gear. They do it all! Baby J sleeps the best when he’s swaddled like a tiny burrito, so he’s never not swaddled. There are a ton of great instructional how to swaddle a baby videos on Youtube. But if you’re a seasoned mom and giving this basket as a gift to a new mom, show her! Hands on learning is always the best, and its a skill every new parent needs to learn!
Not just for sleeping, swaddle blankets are also great for those bodily fluids I mentioned earlier. I always keep at least one in my diaper bag to put down for diaper changes. Bathroom changing tables are gross most places you go, but moreso than that, they help protect both baby and the surface from those inevitable blow outs. I always lay one on the carpet before I put J down to change him, and have saved my carpets from a mess more times than I can count.
If you’re breastfeeding, swaddle blankets also make for great nursing covers!
Just tie two ends around your neck, or drape the fabric around your shoulders for a little coverage. And when you’re done and burping baby, the swaddle blankets are the perfect thing to use to swipe up some of that newborn spit up that tends to happen.
Shopping cart cover, carseat blanket, tummy time mat, the list goes on and on. Swaddle blankets are one of the most versatile baby gifts you can give a new mom! I love finding gorgeous gender neutral swaddle blankets, and giving a pack of three. That way there’s always one for the diaper bag, one for the home, and an extra to switch out when one gets dirty.
I like to include a few other goodies in a new mom newborn gift basket. Books are one of my favorite things to buy for babies and kids, and there are so many great ones out there! Paper pages get ripped, so I always stick with hard pages or fabric crinkle books. The crinkle books are great for when baby starts grabbing and getting more interactive, and are a fun way to add in sensory play. A fun idea would be to add a few holiday themed books into the basket. This way the new mom and newborn could have a tactile way to celebrate and commemorate their first holiday season together!
If I know the mom is going to be breastfeeding, I also like to include a few reusable nursing pads and lanolin. Nursing pads are amazing while supply is regulating, and lanolin is something that should be in every mom’s arsenal. It’s great for sore or cracked nipples and those first weeks of breastfeeding, but it is also great for chapped lips and healing.
Granola bars are also a great thing to add! I become a voracious eater when breastfeeding. I don’t know what exactly it is, but I am always starving, especially during feeds. Because of this, I like having granola bars near when nursing. That way I can keep my energy up, plus the oats are great for supply. If you want to give an even better gift, include some lactation bars! They are specially made to help increase and / or maintain a mom’s breastmilk supply. This is so important during those first 6 weeks, and if a mom is returning to work, it can seriously help ease her mind about maintaining supply while she’s at work.
If you do decide to include a homemade treat in your gift basket for new moms, avoid peppermint!
While peppermint is definitely the flavor of the holiday season, it can also mess with breastmilk supply. Your new mom will definitely appreciate you going the extra step and looking out for her best interests.
The last thing I like to include is a reusable water bottle. Water intake is huge with keeping up a mom’s breastmilk supply, and I always have at least one water bottle on me at all times. However, it’s not just about breastfeeding, water is crucial for postpartum in general! You need to replenish and rehydrate your body after birth, and drinking water is one of the best ways to do that.
Do you know a new mom who could use a little treat this holiday season? While these gift baskets are a great idea for all year round, right now is a perfect time to spoil a new family. Nothing beats the peace of mind that our VTech VM341-216 Bear 2 Camera Full Color Baby Monitor gives us. But not just at bedtime! We can let the younger cousins play together in the play room while the adults work their way through holiday beverages and cookies, without worrying we won’t be able to hear them. Plus, wrapping gifts and preparing the house for Christmas morning is so much easier when I can let our little ones sleep upstairs while we create magic downstairs!
What are some great gift ideas you have for new moms and newborns? What else would you include in this gift basket?