Baby Out & About
Taking your new baby out is intimidating. There is so much to protect them from: sun, wind, germs, car accidents, and friendly old ladies with coughs. Plus you’ll need to be prepared to feed them, change their diapers, have a spare outfit in case of a blow out, entertain them, and put them to sleep. At times you may feel you are carrying enough stuff to last you on a deserted island for a month. As you get into your routine you’ll be able to decide what is important and what you can leave at home. Here is our two cents to get you started:
- Diaper Bag There are three routes you can go with diaper bags. 1. You can buy a decent sized purse, fill it with diapers and wipes and proclaim it a diaper bag. 2. You can find a cute diaper bag designed to look like a purse (usually there are lots of added pockets for things like bottles.) Or 3. Own it and unapologetically carry around something that looks like a functional bag for baby supplies. All of them are good, just pick the one (or all three!) that work for you. Our picks in each category, Regular purse with a day job as diaper bag: Pretty Diaper Bag undercover as a Purse: And the reliable and pragmatic.
- Changing Pad Most diaper bags come with them. Perfect for when you are suspect of the surface you want to change the baby on. The Skip Hop Pronto turns any purse into an instant diaper bag. See our other faves over here at Babble headquarters.
- Wipes Travel Case A thin refillable case of wipes, you can buy these at drug stores.
- Hand Sanitizer If you let your mind ponder too long on the possibility of germs in public you’ll go crazy. Just buy a bottle of this and call it good.
- Sunscreen Don’t make the rookie mistake of not having sunscreen. A lightly sunburned baby comes with a nice dose of mom guilt. Get a tear-free version for kids.
- Rear Facing Car Seat Remember the hospital won’t let you leave without it. (Something to keep in mind if you don’t want to leave.) We prefer one that meets safety standards and does not look like cartoons threw up on it. Two things to note when choosing your car seat, make sure it is compatible with your stroller (if applicable) and pay attention to the weight of the seat. Carrying a healthy growing baby is heavy enough without unnecessary car seat weight.
- Stroller There are a lot of strollers out there but almost every mom we know (even the ones that bought the luxe $1,000 strollers) ends up with a Maclaren. Why? Bottom line: They are lightweight, they recline so your child can take a nap, they collapse and store nicely, and are pretty affordable to boot.
- Carrier These are so convenient, especially when your baby is 0-3 months. As your baby gets older and heavier they become less appealing (back pain!). The gist of some popular carriers: Slings are a favorite for younger babies because they curl right up around you as they sleep and you don’t need as much back support. The ubiquitous bjorn is worn on the front with the baby front and rear facing, while the Ergo doubles as a backpack and front wearing pack. The only drawback being your baby can’t be forward facing.
- Umbrella Walks in the rain seem less romantic when they involve wet babies. Tuck a travel-sized umbrella in your bag for surprise showers.
On short trips where you know you’ll be near a drug store for emergencies you can just bring a diaper, wipes, a blanket, and food for the baby. The first three months the baby is so prtable that a stroller isn’t really necessary.