Newborn & Mama Essentials for the First Week at Home

Newborn & Mama Essentials for the First Week at Home

Most of the items featured in this post will be the focus of full reviews later on, but I thought I’d put together this quick mash up of the products Little Miss Cub and I can’t live without this first week home together. Note that I am not including cloth diapers, although we’ve been using them full time: each brand I’m testing will be getting a full review!

There are lots of things baby will need eventually, but this post is about the things I definitely needed this first week at home. Especially if you have a small amount of space or a limited budget, it’s good to know what items you should prioritize before baby comes home!

Guzzie & Guss Habitat


While we are co-sleeping for a good stretch at night, during the day I need a safe, cozy spot for Little Miss Cub to nap while we are hanging out on the top floor. She usually starts her night in her Habitat, next to our bed, then upon her first waking we co-sleep. What I like most about the Habitat is that I know it will be in use for a long time: it morphs into a playpen, for one thing, and it is super light and packable. I plan on bringing it on the plane to BC in September as one of my two “baby equipment” allowances. It folds up into a flat carrying case and weighs maybe 12 lbs. Cub’s play pen, I recall, I could barely carry on my own, and even folded down it was a behemoth! On a stylistic note, the Habitat is hip baby furniture: I love how it looks!

BABYBJÖRN Bouncer Mini


I am so grateful that our Bouncer Mini was waiting at our doorstep when we got home from the hospital. At the newborn stage, you need lots of comfy, safe places to park the baby, especially with a preschooler at foot who needs your attention, too. Our Bouncer Mini, like the Habitat, has a simple, clean, modern design. No fancy, noisy doodads attached, no vibrating motor, no blinding primary colours. Like the Habitat, it folds flat. Naturally, Little Miss Cub is nonplussed by these parent-friendly features. For her, it is a comfy, cozy, ergonomic spot to rest when I’ve got my hands full.

Bébé Hibou Bum Wash

I think this is the third time I’m mentioning Bébé Hibou on the blog. I adore this stuff, and I had a feeling I was going to love it even more on a newborn. Meconium? No problem: Bébé Hibou cleaned it up in one swipe. Little Miss Cub’s sensitive bum is clean, moisturized and totally unirritated. I’ve been using Bébé Hibou on her since her very first diaper change. I also used it to gently clean the sticky residue left on her skin by the ECG electrodes at the hospital.

Muslin Swaddle Blankets


It’s unusually hot in Calgary this summer (so I’ve heard). I’m still grateful to be here and not in humid, sticky Montreal with a newborn! That said, Little Miss Cub is wearing, at the most, a onesie, during the day. Then I wrap her in a muslin blanket—I have Lulujo (affiliate link), Aden & Anais (aff. link) and Mariposah brands—so she still feels cozy without overheating. I have an Ollie Swaddle to test, but it’s just too hot in the house to use it right now.

Cloth Wipes

I have a wide variety of cloth wipes, from the ones I cut out of old pajamas to my most luxurious (and favourite) Nuggles Soy Velvet wipes. I haven’t used any disposable wipes on Little Miss, just the Bébé Hibou on a cloth wipe. The soy velvet ones are so soft that I also used them for myself while in the hospital! (And I have a stack of my flannel wipes in the two bathrooms for me, too. Wiping with toilet paper is NOT an option postpartum!)

Ameda One-Handed Breast Pump


My milk came in fast, and, like with Cub, I’ve got a LOT of milk. I am signed up to be a donor for the Calgary Mothers’ Milk Bank, so I’m eager to not waste a drop. I also rarely have two hands. I like to have the pump on one side while Little Miss feeds on the other, in fact. My breast pump with Cub required a hand to hold the bottle and a hand to operate the pump, so the Ameda one-handed pump (aff. link) is a welcome and efffective change! I’ve already got 10 oz. frozen!

Öko Creations Long Menstrual Pads
2015-05-02 10.37.49

I’ve been really lucky in terms of postpartum bleeding: it’s been surprisingly light, generally not even as heavy as my heaviest period day. However, there are always those surprise gushes, and my Öko pads have so far totally had my back(side). No leaks, total comfort, wouldn’t go back to disposable pads for anything! Even if you have heavy bleeding, as long as it’s similar to a heavy period, Öko’s longest pads will do the trick. They are not specifically designed for postpartum, but they are my absolute favourites, and were for Adrienne as well when she reviewed a variety of pads for the Postpartum Pad Party.

Bamboobies & Öko Nursing Pads

Like I said: my milk’s in and it’s fast and furious. I leak a lot. I need waterproof nursing pads and I need lots of them. Bamboobies‘ (aff. link) absorbent surface is a bamboo blend while Öko’s is a hemp blend. Both have a waterproof backing. The bamboo surface of Bamboobies I find to be the softest for the first few days with tender, sore and sometimes cracked nipples, and I find Öko’s hemp surface to be more “stay dry” against my skin (this is also my experience with postpartum pads, by the way). 

BONUS ITEM: A Sitz Bath (aff. link)


I had one of these with Cub and I was sure to have one handy for postpartum this time around. Fill it with warm water, sit it in the toilet bowl and immerse your sore bum for immediate relief. It also helps with those first few postpartum bowel movements…. 

What items were your must-haves for the first week home?


One response to “Newborn & Mama Essentials for the First Week at Home”

  1. Cassandra Rae

    I love all the items you posted! I have a Medela swing which pumps one breast at a time so I really liked that I too could nurse H and pump the other super engorged side. Sitz bath, halleluiah ! The hospital sent me home with one and some Epsom salts and I was set haha. I’m still on the great debate to whether or not I want to go with a midwife this time… I think I mostly want to so I can make a comparison lol. I loved my OB and I had a lot of friends have issues with the midwives in Hamilton. Also as a nurse that interacts with them on a professional level I have NOT had good experiences with it. We will see. All these squishy new borns pics and reviews, and ITTY BITTY cloth diapers really make me want to have another little babe 🙂

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Welcome to my Wolf Pack!

My name is Lindsay and I am a 40-year-old mama of four trying to live an eco-friendly, budget-friendly life! I am a substitute teacher and Child Passenger Safety technician in Calgary, Alberta. Join me on my adventures!

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