Diaper pails, bibs, and rash creams, oh my! By now you’ve probably discovered that babies require a lot of stuff — especially if you’ve started creating your baby registry.

As you prepare for your little one’s arrival, it’s easy to start worrying if you have everything you need. Whether you’re currently adding items to your registry or just want a checklist to make sure that you have everything, we’ve got you covered!

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Perhaps the most photographed of all baby spaces, the nursery is often the most fun to prepare. Making sure the baby’s room is cozy and well stocked will make your life easier when you bring home your bundle of joy.

Although it can be nice to have a theme or color scheme, it’s certainly not necessary to have everything match. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • crib
  • crib mattress, plus 2 waterproof mattress pads and 3 sets of sheets, in case it’s a rough night!
  • changing table
  • bassinet (usually this goes next to your bed and your baby will sleep here for the first 6 months, or until baby is too big for it)
  • monitoring system (preferably video)
  • rocking chair
  • dresser
  • pacifiers (we recommend 4)
  • swaddling blankets (we recommend 4)
  • night-light

Nice to have:

In addition to a place to sleep, your baby is going to need food! The supplies you’ll need will depend on the type of food your baby is consuming: breast milk, formula, or solids.

If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll need:

  • breast pump
  • extra pump parts (especially flanges of different sizes!)
  • burp cloths
  • milk storage containers and freezer bags
  • bottles
  • bottle and nipple brush for cleaning bottles
  • breast pads (disposable or washable)
  • nipple cream

Nice to have:

If you’re using formula, you’ll need:

Nice to have:

  • bottle warmer
  • bottle drying rack
  • carrier bags and ice packs if you intend to be out and about!

When your child starts eating solids, you’ll need:

  • high chair
  • bibs
  • sippy cups
  • kid-friendly plates and bowls (those with suction on the bottom can be very helpful!)
  • kid-friendly silverware and feeding spoons

Nice to have:

  • baby food processor, if you want to make your own
  • ice cube trays for freezing small amounts of homemade baby food
  • storage containers for homemade baby food

One thing no new parent likes to think about is all the dirty diapers that lie ahead! Since you’ll likely spend several years changing diapers, it’s important to have a good set-up. Things that will make diaper changes a breeze include:

A couple of notes on diapers:

  • For cloth diapers you’ll also need waterproof covers and snaps/safety pins.
  • For disposables, you’ll only want to invest in a couple of boxes of newborn diapers, because you don’t know how fast your baby will grow. You may want to have a couple of preemie diapers on hand just in case your baby comes earlier than expected or is on the small side.

Nice to have:

  • hand sanitizer
  • lotion
  • wipe warmer
  • diaper caddy, if you have a multi-level home (keep this stocked so you don’t have to run up or downstairs to change a diaper!)

Although you’ll start with sponge bathing your baby until their umbilical cord falls all the way off, after a few weeks have passed, it will eventually be time to give them a real bath. When that time comes you’ll want:

Nice to have:

  • baby-sized hooded towel
  • lotion
  • baby soft hairbrush
  • bathtub toys

You won’t want to stay inside all the time with your baby! If you’re headed out for a trip (even just to the local park), you’ll want to make sure you have these available:

Nice to have:

  • additional car seat base if you have more than one vehicle
  • jogging stroller with newborn car seat converter
  • baby carrier, wrap or sling

Nice to have:

  • baby scale

Many parents actually end up with more clothing than they need! Remember, your baby will grow quickly, and clothing that is easy to get on and off will be much appreciated when you have a wiggly baby with a messy diaper.

Also, remember that baby clothing should be washed in a baby-friendly laundry detergent. Here’s what we recommend:

  • 8–10 onesies or bodysuits
  • 8 footed pajamas (zippers are often quicker than snaps)
  • 5–8 long sleeved and short sleeved shirt options
  • 5 long and short pant options
  • 8 pairs of socks and/or booties
  • 2 pairs of mittens to protect your baby from scratching their face
  • 2 knit hats, newborn size
  • 2 sweaters or jackets
  • snowsuit or fleece bunting (depending on climate and time of year!)
  • at least 2 sleep sacks (after your baby outgrows the swaddle, this will keep them warm at night!)

Nice to have:

  • magnetic fastening clothing (while expensive, these are super easy to get on and off, which sleep-deprived parents can appreciate!)
  • shoes (your baby won’t be walking yet, but these can look cute in photos)
  • a few dress-up outfits for photo-ops or family meet-ups

  • You’ll want diapering and breastfeeding stations set up around your house to make it easy to change diapers and feed in multiple different locations.
  • There’s no need to rush out and babyproof everything before your baby comes. As your baby becomes more mobile, this will become more important, but it doesn’t all need to be done before they come home from the hospital!
  • When setting up the crib and any other sleeping areas, make sure that the mattress fits snugly, and there are no suffocation hazards. Skip the crib bumper and blankets.
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that babies sleep in their parent’s room, on their own sleep surface, for at least 6 months. Set up the bassinet where you can easily reach it from your bed.
  • Don’t forget to wash your baby’s clothing with baby-friendly detergent before having your child wear them.

While the list of things you need can seem overwhelming, the most important thing you can offer your baby is love!

Their nursery can be mismatched and high chair secondhand, but if you shower them with cuddles, hugs, and kisses, that’s what will have the biggest impact on their development.

Don’t forget to show yourself some love, too, as you prepare for your baby’s arrival! The nesting instinct is strong, but take time for some relaxation before the hard work of parenting begins.