Becoming a parent is thrilling, exhausting – and the steepest learning curve you will probably ever travel. 

Aside from that, it is also expensive as you cover the cost of crucial equipment, such as car seat and crib. 

Despite this, it’s easy to get carried away and waste money on seemingly ‘can’t live without’ items but subsequently realise you really didn’t need them at all. 

Wipe warmers, which heat baby wipes, and pee-pee teepees, which are supposed to stop your son weeing on you while he is being changed (yes, really!) come firmly under this banner. 

But just as there are some items that are a waste of money, equally there are others that really do make a difference during the newborn stage. 

Here are the top six things we think you should have in the house when baby arrives: 


The Moro reflex is another term to add to the long list of things you’ve probably never heard of before parenthood. 

While it settles by the time baby is six-months, it can quickly become a bit of a nightmare for new mums and dads. 

Basically, it’s a startle reflex where your newbie responds to any number of sudden changes in sensory stimulation, such as a loud noise or sudden drop in temperature, with an involuntary movement and it can happen when they’re sleeping. 

The result?  

Baby can waken with a start – and let’s be honest, when you’re exhausted and trying to grab some rest yourself, it’s the last thing you need. 

To reduce the chances of this happening, try swaddling the baby. 

This can be done with a blanket but is even easier with a baby swaddle, which is specially designed so they can be quickly and easily wrapped so they feel snug and secure. 


You might have heard about the fourth trimester, but if you haven’t, it’s the first couple of months after baby is born. 

Adjusting to life outside the warm and secure confines of their mum’s tum, they crave being close to mum or dad. 

For some newborns, it might seem like they won’t sleep unless they’re being held, especially if they suffer from silent reflux. 

Regardless, a sling will prove a crucial as it will allow you to help baby settle while keeping your hands free. 

Breast & Maternity Pads 

Contrary to what the celebs would have us believe, our bodies don’t just bounce back after childbirth. 

Not only does it take time to recover from the pregnancy and labour, breast milk comes in in the days after baby arrives. 

Being totally honest, it can seem like everything is leaking. 

Make sure you have a good supply of maternity towels and breast pads on hand to avoid any emergency trips to the shop. 

Muslin Squares 

Babies are messy. 

When they’re born, their digestive system is fairly inefficient and even though their stomachs can only hold a tiny amount of milk, it can seem like a scene from The Exorcist when it comes back up. 

Muslin squares are a crucial piece of equipment, from the first few days with baby to the weaning stage when food goes everywhere. 

Put simply, you can’t have enough of them. 

Change Bag 

Getting out and about might not be the top of list of priorities in the first days and weeks after baby’s arrival. 

But eventually, you’ll want to return to the world and it’s vital you have a bag that carries everything you need. 

Yet, gone are the days where you grab your keys and run out the door. 

Babies travel with an almost obscene amount of stuff so, to make life as easy as possible, it makes sense to have a bag dedicated and pre-packed with everything you need to leave the house. 

Baby change bags can be expensive, but it is possible to find a suitable bag that doesn’t come with a hefty price tag. 

It is a good idea to get one that can be wiped down, inside and out in the event of leaks, and can also be hung over the pram handle. 

Baby Thermometer 

As sure as night follows day, baby will get sick. 

With any luck, it won’t happen in the first few weeks, but it never hurts to be prepared when it comes to your precious little one’s health. 

Being able to check their temperature is crucial when they’re under the weather and you don’t want to get caught out if you’re worried. 

JUST 89p per Issue – Subscribe Today

Download the beautiful, fully interactive magazine to your device.

Subscribe to download every issue of your area’s magazine.

Pick from Belfast, Down, Mid Ulster, North Coast, & North West.

Never miss an issue.

Local Women Magazine Digital App
Local Women Magazine Digital App