When you're preparing for a baby, you want every essential ready to go before their big arrival. But let's be honest: It can be really tough to anticipate your little one's needs. Trust us, we've been there: Wishing we had requested a certain item when we discovered its importance after the fact.
Although hindsight may be 20/20, the good news is that you can learn from us by adding these team faves to your registry. Everything here (and SO much more) can be found at Target, which is now making the registry experience even better with the recently updated Year of Benefits program. Just for starting your baby registry—whether for your first baby or fifth—you can enjoy perks like two 15% off coupons to apply to any outstanding registry items, a welcome kit with more than $100 in coupons, and a full year of hassle-free returns. If you also sign up for Target Circle, you'll even get a full year of various discounts thanks to the newly launched Year of Exclusive Deals program.
The editors here at Motherly have dozens of babies among us, so talking about baby gear is one of our favorite pastimes… and so many products have earned rave reviews from our editors. Here are 10 game changing products our editors wish they had known about years ago.
Learn from us, mama. Add these to your list.
One Motherly editor's biggest takeaway? She should have made initial purchases with longevity in mind. An okay-to-wake clock like the Hatch Rest Sound Machine is a perfect example. For babies, this sound machine is a bed time lifesaver. Then, for toddlers and young kids, it pulls double duty as a nightlight and programmable "time-to-rise" clock that will change colors and sounds when it's morning.
Hatch Rest Sound Machine, Night Light & Time-to-Rise
Across the board, sleep was a major pain point for Motherly's mamas… and, well, pretty much every parent. Although we know all the best swaddle techniques, it's hard to stop a tiny Houdini who wants to bust out of the swaddle and wake up. That's why a swaddle bag like Love to Dream Swaddle UP that allows babies to sleep with their arms up or down is a game changer we wish we knew about sooner.
Love To Dream Swaddle UP Original
Our editors agree that it's best to start out with an infant car seat that can easily move in and out of the car. But when it comes time to upsize, look for a convertible car seat like the Graco Slim Fit 3-in-1 that will work with your child rear-facing, forward-facing and as a booster seat. If you plan to grow your family, opt for a slimmer version so you can accommodate multiple car seats in the back seat.
Graco Slim Fit 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat
For those early days when your baby is still in an infant car seat, a snap-and-go stroller like the Chicco Shuttle Caddy will be your secret weapon for essential outings. As the name suggests, the car seat just locks into place on the stroller frame, so you don't have to lug the seat by hand into pediatrician appointments and the like.
Chicco Shuttle Caddy Car Seat Carrier
Kids only spend a brief few years in a crib, but you can get more use out of yours by looking for a convertible variety. That way, it can become a toddler bed and even a full-size bed with a conversion kit. By getting a quality model like the Davinci Chloe Regency 4-in-1- Convertible Crib, you can increase the crib's lifespan by so many years.
Davinci Chloe Regency 4-In-1 Convertible Crib
There are few inconveniences worse than realizing you don't have backup crib sheets when you really need them (read: In the wee hours of the morning when your baby's sheets are soaked). Learn from us by keeping backups on hand so you always have a clean crib sheet when you need it!
Fitted Crib Sheet Two by Two - Cloud Island
When you're creating your registry, be sure to think about items you'll need down the road, like a high chair and feeding spoons. Those first few months really will pass by in a flash and suddenly it will be time to introduce solid foods. Longevity is key here too: Our team loves high chairs that can convert into booster seats.
Ingenuity SmartClean Trio Elite 3-in-1 High Chair
Nothing makes you realize how big your bathtub really is like trying to give your tiny newborn a washing in it. The best solution we've found for bathing babies from the earliest days through the first year is a convertible tub that comes with a sling and a seat.
The First Years Sure Comfort Deluxe Newborn-to-Toddler Tub with Sling
Snuggling with your sweetie is one of the greatest joys in the world. But when you still have a to-do list to manage, it can help to have free hands. Our team loves wrap baby carriers like the Moby Wrap for the first months of life because of how comfortable they are for both baby and mama.
Petunia Pickle Bottom for Moby Wrap Baby Carrier
One thing many of our editors didn't realize the first time around is that cribs and toddler beds both use the same size mattresses. Amazing, right? It helps to get a quality mattress right from the get go. That way, it will also be comfortable for your sleeping toddler.
Sealy Cozy Rest Extra Firm Crib and Toddler Mattress
Add these to your registry at Target today and enjoy the Year of Benefits featuring a Year of Exclusive Deals available via Target Circle, two 15% off completion coupons, a year of hassle-free returns, a free welcome kit (valued at $120) and more, mama!
This article was sponsored by Target. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.