Your friend/sister/neighbor/co-worker just had a baby. Stop giving yourself a headache thinking about what to buy. These 10 items are sure-things — baby, as well as mom and dad, will love them!
1. Sophie the Giraffe – A classic, must-have, 100% rubber teething toy. She squeaks, she’s cute, and she always makes an excellent gift. (Plus, at a whopping $22, any parent would be crazy to buy this on their own at a time when they’ve got so many other new expenses.)
2. Fisher-Price Precious Planet Kick and Play Piano – This, as well as other “crib toys,” are excellent gifts for new babies. All parents want their babies to love their cribs, and what better way to help them along than to transform the crib into a fun (yet not overstimulating) space? This one safely secures to the crib and will continue to please your baby throughout her crib years. (I also highly recommend getting a crib mirror, like the Sassy Baby Sweet Dreams Crib Mirror.
3. Lamaze Playhouse Gym – Here is a baby gym that will grow with your child. It comes with 5 removable toys, folds up into a playhouse (that an older baby would enjoy playing with), lays flat for an infant, and packs up into a nice little package for easy storing and transporting. There are baby-activated music and lights, but not of the offensive/annoying variety.
4. Baby Bumbo Seat – The CUTEST baby seat you’ll ever see, the Bumbo seat is good for babies as young as 3-months-old and as old as…well, my skinny almost-3-year-old still sits in it sometimes! It works great as baby’s first highchair (with or without the tray) and as a nice resting place — baby’s like to see the world from different angles!
5. Fisher-Price Papasan Cradle Swing – Gather a few friends to chip in and surprise your new baby pal with this beautiful swing. This is a soft, cozy model with calming music and a gentle rocking motion. One complaint I’ve heard on this one is that it doesn’t plug into the wall. Most swings are battery-operated, but it would be nice that a swing of this size (on the larger size) that probably won’t get moved around much would have a plug-in option. Otherwise, it’s a top-rated swing — one of the best ones on the market.
6. Baby’s First Library – Give baby the gift of classic literature with a collection of the best baby books out there — Goodnight Moon, The Runaway Bunny, and Big Red Barn. Of course, your well-read baby friend may already have these. If so, then consider of gift-box options. like this Sandra Boynton collection, Eric Carle collection, or Beatrix Potter gift set.
7. Infantino Tummy Time Activity Center – All new parents worry that their new babe isn’t spending enough time on his belly. This pyramid-shaped floor toy will encourage baby to lay front-side-down for hours (okay, minutes) while exploring the different developmental toys, textures, mirror, and more!
8. JJ Cole Original Infant Bundle Me – Keep baby warm and cozy all through the winter in this fuzzy body muff. It’s compatible with most carseats and strollers.
9. Sassy Baby’s First Toy 6 Piece Gift Set – This is an excellent set of first toys at a fairly reasonable price. Rattles, links, teether — all must-haves for baby’s earliest collection of toys.
10. Pre-fab swaddles – Lots of new moms and dads don’t realize the incredible impact that a swaddle will have on their first few months with baby. But for many babies, a tight, cozy swaddle will mean the difference between taking 20-minute catnaps and 2+ hour slumber-fests. And yes, it’s not so hard to wrap a swaddle made of a plain square piece of fabric, but life gets a lot easier when you know your swaddle is tightly in place with one of modern man’s greatest inventions — Velcro. The HALO SleepSack Micro-Fleece Newborn Disney Swaddle makes an excellent gift.
Happy gift giving, and congrats on the new arrival!