So, you’re about to be a dad? Congratulations! The next several months are going to be filled with a mixture of emotions ranging from excitement to something I like to phrase as “Holy shit! I have no idea what I’m doing!” Don’t worry though, we’ve all been there and we’ve all made it out (relatively) unscathed.
Not too long ago, I learned that several of my friends are getting ready to prepare for the arrival of their first child and one of the questions I always see from these soon-to-be new parents are recommendations for “must have” items.
In these threads, I always see mom’s reply with some of the things that helped them through the various stages of their pregnancy: body pillows, electric pumps, stretch mark cream, etc.
Now moms, you know we love you, but what I don’t see very often are recommendations for the quintessential items every new dad needs. The items that make fatherhood easier and less stressful because, let’s be honest, we’re parents, too! So, to help my fellow fathers out, I’ve compiled a list of some of the items which each new dad should add to their baby registry.
Guys, there’s a well-known fact that babies like warm milk. Unfortunately, we don’t possess the appropriate natural hardware to deliver this on demand. Instead, we get the pleasure of thawing, warming, and filling a bottle while our little bundle of joy screams mercilessly in our ear.
You can save a lot of time and hearing loss with a bottle warmer. The milk will get to a perfect drinking temperature in a matter of minutes and it’s a lot safer than microwaving it (Pro-tip: never microwave breast milk).
This is one of those items that has been a life saver on more than one occasion. My wife and I use a sound machine for our son when he sleeps. I highly recommend getting a machine that has a white-noise setting.
White noise is what babies hear in the womb and is a rather soothing sound – I’ll admit it’s nearly put me to sleep while I’m putting him down for a nap. With the sound machine playing, our son will sleep through just about anything, including loud vehicles outside his window and when our neighbors set off the fire alarm.
I think investing in a swing was the greatest purchase I ever made in my son’s first year. My wife and I discovered that when he was cranky and tired, one of the easiest ways to put him to sleep was to put him in his car seat and rock him back-and-forth.
It didn’t take long for me to realize that swinging a car seat with a 10 pound kid in it is physically exhausting. Once we bought this swing, life became so much easier!
Baby Monitor With Camera
The first few nights at home with baby can be intense. I remember when every movement and every whimper would make me sit up in bed and think “is he ok?” Was it paranoia? Yup. What helped with that paranoia? Having a baby monitor with a camera so I could easily check in on him without risking waking him up by going in his room.
My one recommendation is to get a monitor with a wide angle camera because depending on where your outlets are or where you can hang the camera, you may or may not be able to see all of the crib.
A Manly Diaper Bag
You have kids, you have nothing to prove … but, sometimes carrying around a diaper bag which is more like an oversized purse, can be cumbersome and not that stylish. I recommend a diaper backpack, which not only holds all the essentials to care for your child, its design is both practical and incognito!
Those are my suggestions for items every dad should have. Do you have any more? Leave them in the comments!