It's not often *I'm* asked for recommendations from expecting moms since I am pretty much the last of my family and friends to have a baby. I have a friend from college, though, who is expecting and recently asked for my recs. I thoroughly enjoyed putting together my list for her and wanted to add it here.
"I found that were very few things that were must-haves.
I highly recommend:
-- swaddle-me blanket (I recommend these to everyone now because they
worked so well for us. My sister and sister-in-law didn't have such
luck. I say register for it and give it a try. After the first couple of
months, Caroline would sleep seven to nine hour stretches when she was
swaddled. Once we stopped swaddling, no more long sleep stretches!)
-- a sling (rather than a Baby Bjorn which is bulky and hard on your
back and baby's legs) You can carry it easily in your diaper bag and
pull it out when you need it. I still use mine often. I prefer a pouch
sling. Ring slings are popular, too. This one is tricky for a baby registry because
stores like Target and Babies 'r Us don't sell it. DON'T get the kind
they carry. It sucks. I also love my Ella Roo Mei Tei.
-- Caroline loved her Flutterbye swing. I've heard good things about the
Ocean Aquarium Swing, too.
-- And we love these socks, too...not a necessity, but they are so cute
and they stay on. You won't need shoes for a while. They have others but
the mary jane socks are my favorites.
-- Dr. Sears Baby Book -- I live with this by my bed. Read it now, or in
the next few months, at least, to get off to a good start. (I didn't do
the natural birth thing, but I think it's great anyway.)
-- The Happiest Baby on the Block -- I didn't actually read this one, but we watched parts of the DVD at the baby care class we took. He recommends five ways to soothe a fussy baby -- shushing (making the shhhh sound which sounds like the womb noises), swaddling, side (holding baby on her side), shaking (more like giggling...never shake a baby!), and sucking.