When Little Oats was a newborn, there were so many products that we loved. While I’m not on board with buying every baby product on the shelves, there are a handful that I swear by.

I know that while I was pregnant, I read every gear guide I could get my hands on, looking for recommendations and suggestions about the best things for a new baby. And now, sitting on the other side of that ‘newborn’ phase, I thought I would share what we loved most.

1) Nuk Pacifiers: We tried five different types of pacifiers; different brands, shapes, sizes and materials. We weren’t pushing the paci, but since LO’s suck reflex is so strong, we knew we needed something. And the Nuk was the only paci she would keep in her mouth on her own. She ended up ditching these completely at about 2 months, but they helped for awhile.

2) Little Tummys Gripe Water: From about 2 weeks to 7 weeks, LO had some mega-fussy periods where I could tell that she was bothered by something. She wasn’t hungry, or wet, or sleepy…she was just plain cranky. We used the alcohol-free version of this gripe water to help her out; a half teaspoon a couple of times a day. Whether it was the actual gripe water, or just the act of drinking something out of a syringe, it calmed her down.

3) Ovol Drops: LO had some serious gas issues at first, and these gas drops helped break up some of the bigger bubbles. Plus, they’re mint-flavoured, which she seemed to love sucking back. Recommend!

4) Exercise ball: I bought this while pregnant to use for my SI joint pain, and during labour. What I didn’t realize was how incredible it would be afterward. LO’s favourite thing was to be held by Mr. O or me and bounced on the ball. When she got bigger, she sat on Mr. O’s lap, bounced, and stared at the shapes and colours on the TV. It’s a miracle product, and we even took it with us on a road trip to Ottawa.

5) Play matWe don’t have this exact SkipHop one, but I think its super cute. LO loved lying on her back, kicking her legs, and staring at the toys that dangled overhead. The rings are interchangeable, so if she got bored of the toys there, we could attach some different ones. In a moment of desperation, I hung Sophie the giraffe (by the neck) from a ring…and it was the biggest hit yet!

6) Summer Infant SwaddleMe wraps: We originally started putting LO down in a muslin swaddle, but because she’s a squirmer, the blankets always worked their way loose. We were so worried about the muslin across her face, so we tried these swaddle wraps. The velcro is soft, but holds together well enough that she can’t wiggle out of them. I could only find the 7-12lbs ones though, so we switched out of these by about 3-4 months.

7) Pampers Swaddlers: These diapers are great. So soft, they contain just about everything, and the line on the front that changes to blue when wet is fantastic, especially in those newborn days when you can’t tell if baby has peed or not. After she hit size 3, we switched to Kirkland brand, but we loved the Swaddlers to start.

8) Britax B-Agile and B-Safe: I am in love with this stroller. It is so easy to get in and out of the trunk, the carseat clips in so easily, and it’s light enough that I don’t struggle with it on my own. It is easy to maneuver, even with one hand (while I’m holding my requisite White Mocha Americano in the other). I love, love, love it.

What are your favourite items for a newborn?