So your friend or family member is having a baby! Congratulations! Time to go shopping for the perfect gift!
You could get a cute little newborn outfit that the baby will be able to wear one time in the rotation of 50 outfits for newborns that were already gifted or handed down to to the new mom. OR you can find something that mom would likely find very helpful which she may not have already thought to get – especially if she is a first-time mom!
(note: this post contains affiliate links of products I used which gives me a small portion of any purchase at no additional cost to you, it just helps cover my blog overhead! I only use affiliate links on products I actually use and believe in unless otherwise noted)
Here are unique gift ideas for a new mom:
1. A gift certificate for an appointment with a lactation consultant. ($$$)
If a new mom intends to breastfeed for any amount of time, I can almost assure you that sometime in the first month, an hour with a lactation consultant would be beneficial. While momma is in the hospital, the nurses and consultants are there to help boost mom’s confidence and answer her questions; but once mom is home and on her own, she will wish she had someone to talk to about her baby’s unique nursing habits.
Even if all seems to be going well, many (if not most) new moms have some level of insecurity around nursing. Is my baby getting enough? Is it okay if he eats on one side? What if I can’t keep her awake? Is my let-down too strong? Not strong enough?
If momma knows she has an hour with local lactation consultant available to her, she will find that to be a huge relief!
2. A membership to a sleep site of the mom’s choice (particularly once the baby reaches four months old and is old enough to start learning to self-soothe). ($$)
Overnight, new moms become obsessed with baby sleep. It is no wonder since the quality of the baby’s sleep tends to mirror the quality of parent’s sleep. Having a “guide” to help parents through the various stages is so helpful, especially since sleep patterns can change from month to month (week to week; day to day…). I was one for those moms who read the books, but when it came to application, I needed a bit of hand-holding and moral support. I invested in a video course that would answer my questions and hold my hand through the ups and downs of baby sleep. Be aware that this particular gift needs the mother’s input. There are differing views on how to help a baby learn good sleep habits, ranging from close the bedroom door and let them cry it out, to sleep with them as they nurse, and everything in-between.
(FYI – I chose Dana Obleman’s Sleep Sense program, which is a gentler method than strictly crying it out… I liked the Platinum option because it came with a higher level of “hand holding”).
3. Dock-A-Tot ($$$)
CAUTION: This product is controversial…. it does not meet the guidelines as a safe product for unsupervised sleeping in the USA (Europe apparently trusts it a little more). My baby and I both LOVED the dock-a-tot. I viewed this as a “luxury” item before receiving this as a gift, and it quickly became an essential! The material is as breathable as something with sides can be – which I tested by sticking my face on even the thickest part of the dockatot and could breathe with no problem. Not only did I use it as a daily place for her to relax but I brought it with me trips so she had a consistent “bed” (it fit into my suitcase), used it for diaper changes, tummy-time practice, and delighted in opportunities to nap with her next to me. Click here to see DockATot and save $10.
4. Milkies ($)
Nursing mom’s know that breast milk is liquid gold. Milkies are an amazing little invention to help no drop go to waste, which is particularly valuable for moms who also pump. For those who don’t know the mechanics of breastfeeding, the milk let-down reflex happens in both breasts at the same time, regardless of which side the baby is nursing. That means, there can often be as much as 2-3 ounces that end up on a nursing pad (or shirt, for those unprepared). Milkies can be worn on the non-nursed breast to catch that milk for transfer to a bottle. I discovered Milkies a few months into my newborn’s life, and although it was helpful, I wish I’d had it right from the start!
5. Nursing Mommy Supplements (price varies)
Here are few recommended supplements that benefit a nursing mom:
Lecithin (for plugged ducts!)
6. A gift certificate for Milk Nursing Wear ($-$$)
I spent over a year in dresses and tops that offered easy-but-discreet-access. When my baby was not yet 8 months old, I had a family wedding to attend that would require a dress that could be wedding-appropriate but offer access; that was when I found Milk Nursing Wear. They have a broad selection that is affordable yet comfortable and discreet.
7. Coordinate a Meal Train Effort (free)
With programs like meal train, coordinating a meal effort for new parents costs minimal time, no money, and it is much needed!
8. Gift Certificate of Your Presence (free)
Are you comfortable being a baby-holder? Are you a good friend of the family, or someone who has built up some level of “trust-equity” in your relationship with the parents? If so, having someone there to offer baby-holding hands will allow a new mom to get a haircut, visit the dentist, attend her followup OB appointments, or maybe just get a luxurious hot bath.
Here is what is critical though: you don’t just present a certificate or offer “Hey if you want to get your haircut, I’ll hold your baby for you.” Here’s the approach when you present the gift certificate: “Let’s take a look at our calendars so you can tell me when you’d like me to schedule your next hair appointment. I’m going to drive you and hold the baby for you while you are getting your cut.”
If you leave it up to the mother, you’re running the risk of her not reaching out to cash in on that gift. Just do it. Go with her so baby can be near and mommy can feel more comfortable. Hold the baby there or take a brief walk outside.
9. Baby Soothing Gift Basket (price varies)
No matter how good-natured a newborn is, he or she will need help from mom and dad to soothe in those early months, which can be an anxious task for new parents. I recommend all new parents have a copy of “The Happiest Baby on the Block” DVD or streaming video. In fact, I swear by it! I note the video instead of the book just because information is easier to watch than sit and read when you are a new parent. If you want to put together a little “baby soothe basket” for the new mom, here are the items I found helpful for baby soothing:
Happiest Baby on the Block DVD
The Miracle Blanket Swaddle
Pacifier (my baby liked the Philips Avant Soothie Pacifier)
Sound machine (preferably one that can go all night, not the cute stuffed animal noise machines that run on batteries and stop after 45 minutes)
An exercise ball for sitting on and bouncing
10. Premium Subscription for Tinybeans.com ($$)
Tinybeans is my personal choice for uploading baby photos & videos. They have the photos in a calendar view mode, which I like, and family can be invited to follow, comment, or upload their own photos if you’ve given them access.
Are you a mom? Let me know items you found helpful when you were a new mom by commenting below!
Want more ideas? See my Baby Essentials list under the “Cassie Recommends” tab.