Setting up the nursery is one of the activities that expectant parents enjoying doing during the long wait for their little one to arrive.
If they are first time parents, knowing what to include in a nursery can be overwhelming.
It’s easy to go overboard and buy everything you see but we’re going to make things easier for you.
There are 10 items that make up a terrific, well stocked nursery that will have all of the necessities and some extras as well.
If you are going to be registering with a baby store for your baby shower, make sure to include these 10 items. They will help you create a nursery that your baby is comfortable and peaceful in and that you enjoy walking into as well.
If you’re on a budget, be sure to let close family and friends know what you do most want for the nursery. If they are looking for gift ideas, letting them know about these 10 items will give them some great suggestions for a gift to purchase for your baby shower.
1. Baby Crib
This is the most important item in your nursery. It is where your new baby will spend a lot of his or her time so you want it to be safe, beautiful, comfortable and functional as well. Cribs come in a variety of colors, finishes, wood types, sizes and styles. Choosing one can be really difficult if you are not sure what you are looking for.
It is not recommended to purchase a used crib. Using one that you used for a previous child is fine as long as the crib is not years old.
Cribs have updated safety standards and they can be recalled so purchasing a new crib will ensure that the highest level of safety standards has been met.
You have a lot of options when it comes to purchasing a crib. You can choose one that the baby can use for 2-3 years and then you can purchase a different toddler or twin bed; or you can purchase a transitional crib that lasts from newborn up to the pre-teen/teen years.
The transitional cribs are designed to grow with your baby and with a few adjustments can go from crib to toddler bed. Once they outgrow the toddler bed too, the bed can transition again to a twin or full size bed.
These beds are sturdily made to last years and many end up going to college along with your child. With good care, these crib-to-bed models can possibly even be passed down to your child’s children as long as they have the necessary safety standards and the bed is not damaged in any way.
Don’t forget to buy a good quality crib mattress to go inside the crib. Most cribs do not come with them so you will need to purchase one separately.
2. Baby Changing Table
Many people don’t think that a changing table is a necessity, but they really save mom and dad’s backs and provide a safe and convenient place to change the baby’s diaper. There are many different styles and types of baby changing tables available to choose from. You can match them to the crib and other furniture in the nursery or choose a totally different style if matching furniture is not a priority for you.
Make sure that you choose a changing table that is sturdy and well built and made of solid wood. It can be a combination of wood and wood composite but you want to avoid purchasing the models that are made of all composite. They are not durable and more than likely will be unsteady and will wear out quickly.
A few important features to look for when shopping for a baby changing table include 4 sided rails that go all the way around the top.
These rails are a good safeguard against the baby rolling off the table. Remember that these rails do NOT take the place of your constant supervision. Keep one hand on the baby at all times while they are on the changing table.
Other features that are very important include safety straps for additional safeguards, shelves to hold diaper changing supplies or clothing, sturdy construction. Baby changing tables can be incorporated into dressers or freestanding units.
3. Diaper Pail
It may sound simple but a good diaper pail is very important unless you want the nursery and other parts of the house to smell like dirty diapers. The key to choosing a good diaper pail is to look for one that is airtight and that has some sort of barrier to keep odors in.
Don’t choose an open topped trash can or one of the kinds that have a swivel top. This is not sufficient enough to keep all the odors inside and out of the rest of the room. There are many different styles of diaper pails on the market so you will have plenty to choose from.
4. Baby Mobile
With all the time that a baby spends in their crib in the first few months, it’s good to have something for them to look at. A baby mobile fits this need perfectly.
They attach to the head or the side rail of the crib to entertain the baby. Baby Mobiles come in dozens of different styles and themes.
They usually have 4-5 small objects that are suspended from a top portion that contains a motor.
This motor can be battery operated or manually wound to spin so the baby has something interesting and colorful to watch while they are lying in their crib.
If you have chosen a specific nursery theme such as Noah’s Ark or Flowers, chances are there will be a baby mobile that matches it. Most nursery bedding sets have matching items like baby mobiles, lamps and even matching wall hangings.
Battery operated mobiles are much more convenient than having to wind it up every time you want to turn it on for the baby. Some models even have light “shows” that reflect lights and designs onto the ceiling over the baby’s bed. Make sure that the mobile is securely attached so it doesn’t fall onto the baby and injure them. The baby mobile will need to be removed when the baby is old enough to sit up.
5. Baby Night Light
Having a good baby night light enables parents to go into their baby’s room and check on their baby, change a diaper if needed and even feed them; all without turning on glaring lights that can wake the baby up so much that they won’t be able to get back to sleep.
The dim, soothing light that baby night lights put out are calming and provide the baby with peaceful ambience at night.
Baby night lights can come in all shapes and sizes. Some may be powered with a regular plug in cord and others may be battery operated.
With as little power as a baby night light uses, you may want to go with the plug in variety so you do not have to purchase a lot of batteries or worry about having to recharge them.
6. Baby Humidifier
A baby’s sensitive system can be affected by dry air and end up with colds and viruses very easily. Dry air affects adults as well and with as little as a baby is the effects can be even more severe.
Young babies can’t take medications so you want to do whatever you can to minimize their discomfort during the winter months. A baby humidifier is an excellent addition to the nursery and can provide much needed moisture to the room so the baby is comfortable.
Baby humidifiers come in many different styles and sizes. Choosing the right one is very easy if you know what to look for when you start shopping around. It is also very good to have on hand when the baby is sick although it can be a very good way to prevent illness as well.
A good quality baby humidifier is not overly expensive. Some even have colorful lights that allow them to double as a baby night light as well. Opt for the cool mist humidifiers which are much safer since there is no boiling water or heating elements to worry about.
7. Video Baby Monitor
With a good quality video baby monitor not only will you be able to hear your child, you’ll be able to see them as well. There are several different models on the market but you will want to ensure that you are purchasing one that has great quality so the picture is clear and you can see exactly what you need to see.
A blurry, unfocused picture in the video screen doesn’t do any good at all. A high quality video monitor in your baby’s room allows you to move around the home and still know what is going on with the baby at all times. Some models offer talk back capability that allows the parents to speak to their child from another room to soothe them.
Regular baby monitors are also very good if you don’t feel like a video monitor is something you need. A regular audio baby monitor does the same thing in terms of allowing parents to hear their babies when they are not in the same room. With a regular baby monitor there is no visual aspect, only audio. Some models have voice responsive lights that go off in correlation with the sounds in the nursery so if the monitor is across the room you can SEE that there are sounds coming from the baby’s room.
8. Quality Disposable Diapers
Another critical addition to your baby’s nursery are disposable diapers. Unless you have decided to use cloth diapers, you will need disposables and lots of them. If you want to stock pile diapers before the baby comes, don’t load up on a bunch of newborn size diapers.
Babies usually outgrow the newborn size fairly quickly and then you have packs of diapers that can’t be used. 2-3 packs of newborn diapers should be fine and then the rest should be size 1 and 2. There are many different brands of diapers on the market but if you want true leak protection you will want to go with one of the top brands.
They really are better than the generic brands and your baby won’t wake up as much through the night with soaked clothing from a leaking diaper. Having plenty of diapers on hand is a definite must have for a well prepared nursery. Don’t forget about stocking baby wipes and diaper rash cream as well so you have everything you need for a fast diaper change.
9. Baby Receiving Blankets
Every nursery needs to have plenty of baby receiving blankets on hand. There are so many different uses for these handy blankets that you may be surprised how many you go through in a day.
They are terrific for giving the baby privacy while you nurse, draping over your shoulder when you burp the baby, swaddling them when they are very young, tucking around them when riding in the car to prevent getting cold, and even cleaning up unexpected spills.
There are many different styles and materials that baby receiving blankets can come in. There are designs just for girls and just for boys and for many other themes as well. They are smaller than a regular blanket, but not so small that they can’t be used to swaddle the baby during the first few weeks.
Don’t worry about a number when it comes to how many blankets you have. You really can never have too many receiving blankets while your baby is young.
10. Baby Crib Sheets
Last but certainly not least are crib sheets. This is another item that you will want to have a lot of. Babies spit up and have leaky diapers all the time so having a stockpile of baby crib sheets on hand will alleviate any worry over what to do if one sheet gets dirty.
Look for crib sheets that are good quality and that have deep pockets so the sheet doesn’t pull off the edge of the mattress when the baby moves around. There are many different patterns and colors available for the parent to choose from. Avoid flannel crib sheets unless it is wintertime because they can result in a sweaty, uncomfortable baby.
The above ten items are very important to having a nursery that is fully equipped with almost everything your baby needs. Of course there are other pieces of baby equipment that you will need for your baby such as a car seat, high chair, diaper bag, bouncy seat, baby swing, stroller and many, many other things, but when it comes to the nursery, these items will take care of a lot of your baby’s needs and help the nursery remain an efficient and comforting place to take care of your baby.