20 Baby Registry Must Have Items

Mommin', Pregnancy

When I was pregnant I remember spending HOURS researching the best items. I looked at reviews online, asked friends, browsed Pinterest and Baby’s List and Amazon. I wanted the best possible products for my sweet baby, but like many people, I also had a budget! My quest was to choose the best baby gear in a sort of “middle of the road.” If you’re looking for luxury baby items, this is not the post for you!

Overall, I was pretty happy with the majority of my choices for baby gear. John and I reviewed our gear and narrowed it to 20 items that we deem our “must haves” for new parents. If you have questions about something NOT in this post, feel free to send me a message and I’ll do my best to help you. (There’s a lot of baby gear NOT on here because I didn’t want it to become too overwhelming.)

Please note: I am a participant in the Amazon Affiliate Program and I may earn a small commission from purchases you make using the links to products in this post. You will not pay more for your purchase by using this link. Your purchase helps me continue to create recipes and health and wellness content for you.

  1. We loved this car seat by Graco for the newborn stage and even past a year old. It has great safety reviews, is extremely functional, and easy to clean and maneuver.

I’d highly recommend getting a second base if more than one person will be picking the baby up or dropping the baby off from daycare/grandma’s/etc. This was great because I could leave the seat at daycare when I dropped off in the morning and John could grab it when he picked up in the afternoon. It made our routine seamless and was much cheaper than purchasing a second seat. Just be sure to double check that your base fits your seat!

2. The <a href=”http://<iframe style=”width:120px;height:240px;” marginwidth=”0″ marginheight=”0″ scrolling=”no” frameborder=”0″ src=”//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=tf_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=biteswithbeth-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B07XLNFBZX&asins=B07XLNFBZX&linkId=1909a1ac46eb954636674531964eaae8&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff”> Boppy nursing pillow was an absolute godsend. I promise that the day will come you’ll be able to breastfeed and walk or multitask in various other ways, but in the newborn days babies are tiny and almost slippery!! You want a boppy – even if its just to make it easier to hold your teeny tiny babe! We had a camping themed cover and there are TONS of adorable cover options. I love this neutral grey color available on Amazon!

3. The Boppy Lounger is amazing for the newborn stage and up until baby can roll. It’s so great to keep baby comfy cozy and elevate them just a little so you can keep an eye on them. Harry used to lay in this and watch mama get ready when he was itty bitty and it was just the two of us!

It’s also great for those adorable monthly photos before baby can sit up. Get another cover or drop your favorite cozy blanket over the lounger and you’ve got your DIY baby prop!

4. I adored my Milk Snob because it was just so versatile. The Milk Snob functions as a car seat cover, nursing cover, barrier between baby and grocery cart germs, etc. There are so many uses for the Milk Snob and they’re so soft and adorable. I love that it functions as a breathable car seat cover as well as a nursing cover so it’s one less thing to tote along when you leave the house. Did I mention they drop adorable new patterns every season?? Buy one. You won’t regret it.

5. This Sealy baby mattress has been fantastic (I’ll be honest, our little one occasionally jumps on his when he wake up from naptime). It’s affordable, durable, and has a waterproof coating to protect it from overnight diaper leakage.

6. These burp cloths were the absolute best! When I was pregnant with our first, I didn’t realize that burp cloth quality was a big variant, but it totally is. These were our favorites because they’re so soft and absorbent plus they don’t stain easily.

7. The baby monitor was something I researched extensively. I weighed pros and cons and spent hours mulling over the right baby monitor for us. A little back story: the news story about baby monitors and home cameras being hacked and then used to exploit families was a big deal when I was pregnant and building my registry. I decided to go with a monitor that does not connect to Wifi for this reason. Infant optics video monitor has great range, an impressive camera with night vision and daytime that automatically adjusts. You can move the position of the camera, it has decent battery life. You can also add multiple cameras which is great for families with multiple small children or if you want to keep one in an area where the baby might play and also the nursery. We love ours.

8. We have two Regalo baby gates that we use. We love these because you can walk through the gate and don’t have to take the entire gate down or climb over it while holding a baby. They hold up well and are easily adjustable for the size of doorway or hallway you’re using it in.

9. This Pack ‘n’ play Snuggle Suite was completely worth the money. Our master bedroom was downstairs and the nursery upstairs so we used this as our crib for longer than I should admit. This pack comes with a bouncer that rests as a bassinet style seat next to a convenient changing table! The mesh storage baskets on the side are the perfect size to organize diapers and wipes. It was such a convenient setup to have downstairs. There’s a bassinet insert and when baby outgrows that, there’s a sturdy playard mattress. We more than got our money’s worth with this one! (The bouncer was a favorite and you can’t buy the same style separately!)

10. These Mam Pacifiers were the only ones that our little one liked. They come with these awesome little pacifier holders that are great for keeping pacis sterile in the diaper bag..and keeping them from being misplaced in the cabinet! (You can also use the holders to sterilize the pacifiers in the microwave, but I personally, have never tried that.)

11. Although solid foods are a little far off, it’s not a bad idea to register for some feeding basics! We loved our ezpz Mini Mat. It’s great for when baby is just learning to eat and hasn’t quite grasped the “not throwing your plate” concept.

Grab these pre-spoons while you’re at it! It’s basically baby’s first step in learning to use utensils. It can double as a teether and is the perfect size for those adorable hands.

Save yourself some sanity and grab a Bapron while you’re at it. They’re available in tons of adorable patterns and colors and they’ll save all those adorable clothes you’ve been collecting. It makes dinner cleanup a snap.

12. This Munchkin dishwasher basket will save your sanity when you’re packing six bottles a day for your breastfed baby so you can go to work or spend a day out and you’ve washed about a million bottles that week.

13. To properly dry all of the aforementioned bottles preventing the risk of bacteria growing, you need a good drying rack. You definitely want the bigger one (unless you have more of a compact kitchen, then you may want the smaller version).

14. Something I didn’t register for, but wish I had, was a baby carrier….or five! When I was a new mom I was also home alone because my husband was halfway across the world. Baby carriers were my BFF and babies usually love them because their snuggled up to their favorite person and it feels almost like the womb. The Boppy carrier is a cross between a carrier and a wrap. Super great for when baby is small – some of the more structured carriers aren’t suitable for babies under eight pounds. We kept this one in the car for grocery trips and it was fantastic!

I was a little intimidated by the Moby wrap at first because you have to wrap it yourself, but we love love loved this one. It’s great because it’s so soft and snuggly and a bit more breathable than some others. Some mamas are even talented enough to breastfeed while baby wearing in the Moby! It’s super cozy and is extremely comfortable.

This Baby Bjorn carrier was so comfy and breathable while still a little more structured which is great for older babies. I used this one when I flew solo with the baby!

15. Frida Baby products are always incredible quality and this set was a lifesaver! It includes a fridet for mama – I personally didn’t use this but I’ve heard it’s superior to the ones they provide in the hospital. The Nail Frida and the file that come with it are awesome for cutting baby nails – there’s a little viewing window so you can make sure you’re trimming only nail. The Windi Baby and Nosefrida are great for those unfortunate truths of having a little little one. I promise with this set in the nursery, you’ll feel just a little more prepared.

16. I definitely recommend getting at least one extra bouncer. It’s great to have them in multiple rooms so you can seamlessly move from one room to the next – for example showering when you’re home alone! We loved this puppy bouncer from Fisher Price!

17. If you have hard floors, this playmat will bring you peace of mind. Our entire first floor is hardwood and it can be really nerve-wracking with a baby who’s just learning to roll, sit, and play. I love that this playmat is very neutral in color because it keeps the integrity of decorations of the room in tact. We’ve had ours for more than a year now and it has held up very well for us!

18. The Haaka is so great for building up a small “stash” of breastmilk for date night or in preparation for returning to work. It also helps you not lose any of those precious ounces. Be smarter than me and buy this one with the stopper! I went cheaper and didn’t get the one with a stopper when I purchased mine and I DID lose some of those precious ounces!

19. This Graco Stroller clicks right into the car seat I mentioned at the start of the post. It’s super great for a quick transition from car to indoors especially if it’s cold! We still use ours every day for walks and it seems to be very comfy.

20. This Skip Hop play center was the most convenient way for baby to play, mama to cook dinner, and dance and sing along the way! This activity center grows with baby and converts to a play table and eventually to a toddler table.

I’m pretty sure I could write about this for days but these are sort of our “Top Twenty!” that I’d recommend you consider purchasing for your babe! If you need more suggestions or opinions on products please send me a message! I’m happy to share my experience if I’ve used the product before!

Happy shopping!

On Morning Sickness and Grace

Mommin', Pregnancy

The one thing that no one (besides MAYBE your mother if she was really sick with you and likes to remind you of that) tells you about when you’re trying to get pregnant or just found out you’re pregnant and the hormones haven’t really ramped up yet, is morning sickness. I’m sure you’ve heard the old adage that morning sickness isn’t just in the morning – and for me, it DEFINITELY wasn’t. I’m writing this not to scare you newly pregnant mommas – there is already more than enough stuff out there on the interwebs to do that – but to hopefully provide some solidarity to mommas who are just in the thick of it.

“I would only have a name for when my lactation consultant mentioned casually that I had hyperemesis months after I’d given birth. I’d only remember the name of hyperemesis because Amy Schumer got REAL about it in her Netflix special, Growing.

In fact, the point of this is to share with you what worked for me while dealing with astounding morning sickness that I would only have a name for when my lactation consultant mentioned casually that I had hyperemesis months after I’d given birth. I’d only remember the name of hyperemesis because Amy Schumer got REAL about it in her Netflix special, “Growing.”

As I said previously, no one tells you just HOW FREAKING BAD it was. Maybe their mind played tricks on them in the excitement of their new babe? It doesn’t match their persona? Or maybe they hope to minimize the struggle of other mamas? Well, I’m not here for it.

I was so sick. So sick in fact, that I wish I’d kept a running list of the places I’d puked. If you’re doubting how sick I was, let this stand as evidence: by the third month of pregnancy, I’d taught my two mischievous little dogs to leave a puddle of vomit alone until I finished puking and could clean it up. Let me tell you, my dogs are NOT super stars at dog training. They’re not even trained well, but they learned that!

To give you an idea of the drastic nature of my illness, I puked all over the floors of the apartment we’d lived in when we found out I was pregnant. John and I were relieved to move into our new house where the floors were almost entirely hardwood – this meant it’d be easier to clean up my vomit! Yippee! I puked in the car. I puked beside the car. I puked in the toilet sooo much. My toilets were never cleaner. It turns out when you stick your face into your toilet bowl multiple times a day, you like it to be sanitized daily.

I even once puked down the center of my classroom floor, leaving a trail on the way to the staff restroom.

I even once puked down the center of my classroom floor, leaving a trail on the way to the staff restroom. I had to call a dear friend and co-worker, admit to her that I was pregnant, and explain the problem. Within 30 minutes she had three custodians in my classroom and a sub for my classes. I was sick and embarrassed and I was out the door. (I also learned this day to always keep an extra set of clothes in my desk.)

Much like the Little Mermaid had “gadgets and gizmos aplenty,” I had aversions and food allergies galooooooore! (Thingamabobs? I probably still have twenty.) The only difference was I didn’t want mooooore! Pre-pregnancy, I meal prepped. I was in much better shape and just figuring out how to manage my food allergies in a practical way. I didn’t even know what an aversion was. For those of you like my sweet innocent pre-pregnancy self, I’ll explain.


An aversion is a repulsion to a particular food, smell, or beverage. The rising hormones in your newly knocked up body, cause your body to develop this repulsion. Add in low blood sugar and fatigue and you’ve got the perfect storm. My most notable aversions were as follows:

  • Water – yes, that’s a thing
  • Eggs
  • Meat – most notably chicken
  • Prenatal vitamins
  • Green Vegetables
  • Tomatoes
  • Chocolate
  • Citrus
  • Coffee – sad, I know!
  • Basically anything that wasn’t plain white, non-GF bread

Some of these things I think I eventually just avoided because they were so awful to have come up in a vomiting spell.

I remember vomiting so hard that blood vessels would REGULARLY bust in my eyes. This left me with red, swollen, unattractive eyes that led to a student even asking, “is your husband a nice man?” because she thought that maybe I was not safe at home. I spoke with a former student the other day and he reminded me that I couldn’t wear makeup because I would smell it on my face and get sick! (Sadly, this is true!)

Things I could eat (most of the time):

  • Egg McMuffins – only if they were NOT homemade. I tried to get ahead and prep my own Egg McMuffins to reheat for breakfasts and lunches but I’d get sick on it every time. I threw so many sandwiches away.
  • The Starbucks Pink Drink (referenced in this post)
  • Starbucks Cinnamon Coffee Cake (also referenced here)
  • Orange soda -this one was odd as I never usually drink soda! But alas, another Amanda DeJournett remedy worked for me.
  • Chipotle tortilla chips. Plain. I think I lived for weeks on these.
  • Bowls from Chipotle with only white rice, chicken, sometimes black beans, corn salsa, and cheese.
  • Later in my pregnancy I would be able to eat more things but at the transitional phase between dying of vomit and learning to live again, I ate a lot of chicken fingers and fries when I was feeling sick.

Now that you know that the crazy things you’re literally sick over are normal and okay, even if that’s not what is always shared or represented, I’d like to share with you what helped me.

What helped me:

  • Shortly after finding out I was pregnant, my mother-in-law visited and mentioned that sometimes pre-natals can be really hard on your stomach. She took me to the store where we purchased Gummy Pre-Natals that were lifechanging and really helped with my sickness at the time. I used them for the rest of my pregnancy as well as the whole time I was breastfeeding.
  • Ordering out – if you’re able to cook at home or tolerate someone else in your home cooking for you, that’s great and perfect and ideal, however, I was not. In the beginning, I was so sick that we ordered out a couple times a week because I was so sick I couldn’t handle the smell of something cooking in our small apartment. On really bad days, we’d just order out and hope it stayed down for me! This was crucial when John left for his deployment and there was no one left to cook for me!
  • After several weeks and much weight loss during the first trimester, my midwife prescribed Vitamin B6 with Unisom at bedtime to prevent the super tough morning sickness. (This is what made it possible for me to even eat most of the foods listed before!)

In this post I talk about my early-pregnancy anxieties surrounding eating. Pregnancy for me was hard.

In June, I went in for my check up and I’d lost 27 pounds. My doctor wasn’t satisfied with this and knew that I’d been horribly sick. She suggested a few things. Initially, she wanted to prescribe me protein shakes. This was not an option because all of the things she could prescribe contained whey protein which is a derivative of dairy and I am allergic to dairy. Then she suggested, as she had previously, that I take Ondansetron for the constant nausea. I was very hesitant even after discussing the potential risks and I didn’t take it for a couple weeks after filling the prescription. I was terrified of the potentially negative risks for my baby. After talking with my husband and doing my own research in addition to the information supplied by my doctor, I began to take the medication as needed. I determined based off of my research that the risks were minimal. As always, it is most important that you do your own research and you are comfortable with the choices you’re making for your own health and well-being.

I carried it with me my entire pregnancy when my OBGYN told me to just give myself some grace. I think this is something women commonly struggle with.

When I went in to the check up where I’d lost so much weight in just a few months, my doctor showed concern and explained that losing weight and not being nourished would impact my baby as well. I carried it with me my entire pregnancy when my OBGYN told me to just give myself some grace. I think this is something women commonly struggle with. She asked me to give myself some grace in what I was eating – you saw the list. It wasn’t pretty! She advised that I should eat whatever it was that I could keep down – including allergens if my body tolerated it. She told me that stress and tiredness only make it worse. To my own great surprise, I listened and I gave myself some grace.

A note for those of you supporting a pregnant mama: SO many well-intentioned people said, “It’ll be worth it!” “The baby will make it all okay!” “You won’t even remember this after he’s born!” – this was not helpful to me at all! Sometimes, when you’re sick for literally six months straight, you’ve reached the third trimester and you’re still sick, all you need is some empathy. For once, make this issue about the mama! I PROMISE she hasn’t forgotten the little one who she is currently sheltering within her own body. She’s in this for the outcome. Please, please, please – just ask her what you can do to help, offer to find food she can tolerate or medicine that will make her feel better. Remember that she is more than the baby within her.

Remember that she is more than the baby within her.

I WAS thinking of my baby. I WAS thankful to be pregnant. I knew it’d be okay and it would be worth it. I was thinking of my baby more than anyone in the entire world. This type of comment feels dismissive of the mother who is likely going through SO much right now. It always made me feel a bit like an ungrateful wimp and had the unintended consequence of making me feel worse than before the comment was made.

Even if you mean it and you have the best of intentions, please withhold the comment that “it will be worth it,” because I promise, that mama knows. You’re not telling her anything she doesn’t know and she doesn’t need a reminder to be grateful. Sometimes she just needs an ear or some empathy or maybe a hand with some chores so she can rest!