I attended a baby shower on the weekend. It was gorgeous to ooh and aaah over the glowing Mumma’s big belly and lots of fun to watch her unwrap her presents. But it made me realize that many people are at a loss as to what they could get as a gift for a soon to be Mum (or a new baby)- especially when it’s a second, third or even fourth addition to the family! So I thought I’d use my infinite wisdom (not really), and my experience in both giving & receiving gifts for babies and give some suggestions- hopefully, they help!
1. Meals, food of almost any description.
Having done the newborn gig 3 times now I can absolutely assure you cooking is sometimes just not possible in those crazy early days (weeks)! And if like me takeaway is not an option (Eagle Boys don’t deliver 100 km out of town- shocker), then trust me having a couple of home cooked meals in throwaway containers are a godsend. I try to make things that take a bit of effort or time- my current favorites are lasagna, Shepard’s pie, meatballs in a tomato sauce and zucchini slice, and maybe a chicken casserole and always a cake or slice of some sort- anything to save her some effort in the kitchen is always excellent! I had a beautiful girlfriend travel 7 hours to visit my newborn and she brought with her so much food I didn’t have to cook for a week- it was so generous and very, very appreciated. (Thanks Carice!)
2. A homemade or handmade blanket or rug.
Each of my kids was given a rug or quilt that is their very own and is so special. Each rug is completely different and came from a different person each time- my youngest received his from a lady I’ve never a met, a friend of Mum’s. She heard we were having a 3rd boy and wanted Charlie to have something new, of his very own.
You get extra brownie points if you ask the parents if they have a theme or colour scheme for their nursery.
3. Cloth nappies, face washers or a good quality towel.
You can never have enough absorbent ‘things’ around when you have a baby. All 3 of my boys have been a bit ‘chucky’ and I never go anywhere without a face washer or cloth nappy. Face washers are super helpful because they double as a burp cloth and obviously a face washer so they will get used even after bub grows up. A nice towel will last for years but I really wouldn’t recommend a hooded towel because they can’t be used for as long and I’ve always found them annoying.
4. Nappies and wipes.
Not exciting or pretty but I guarantee you they will be appreciated. Let’s face it- having a baby is expensive and some costs are inevitable. A box or packet of nappies (in a size up from newborn is always a good idea) will absolutely get used and every little bit helps- trust me. If you want to make nappies look pretty you could make them into a nappy cake- cute!
5. A pedicure for the expectant Mumma.
When I was pregnant with my eldest son, all I wanted was a pedicure, but we simply couldn’t afford it and I never found the time to go when I was pregnant with our youngest (when we could have afforded it). It’s something that I know I would have loved and I know how much pregnant Mumma’s need just a little bit of time for themselves before their baby arrives and shakes up their lives (in the best possible way of course!)
6. Clothes in a size other than newborn.
Those newborn clothes sure are super cute. In fact I find them almost irresistible. But I’ll tell you now, while they will, of course, be appreciated they probably won’t be used, or needed as much as something in a larger size. Yes, guessing the season that bub will need a certain size can be a headache, but if you get something trans-seasonal (long sleeved onesies or gro-suits, a light jumper or a pair of overalls) it will be easy to lay up or down and so will get a lot of use.
7. A cleaner.
Even if it’s just once before they come home from the hospital, or when bub is about 2 weeks (this was when I struggled the most), they will love it!
8. A picture book
I love giving books to a new Mum and baby. They are something that will be used over and over and kept and loved for many years. My boys love reading the books they were given as babies and always ask me to read the message written in the book- which reminds me, I love to write a little message and the date when I give a book to someone, even something as simple as “to baby such & such, welcome to the world, 22nd March 2015, Love (insert your name here). An absolute favourite is Where is the Green Sheep but you can find more ideas here.
Is there anything this you always give or would have loved to receive?