We are leaving babyville with our youngest (and last) who is about to turn one. So I was thrilled to find out my two sisters-in-law were pregnant. I had a reason to drool over little teeny weeny bubby clothes again!

Then I got a grip on myself.

While a lavishly decorated nursery and divine baby clothes are lovely to behold, there are a few presents that would be on every new parent’s must-have list if only they knew they needed them! If you really want to buy a pressie for a mum-and-dad-to-be that’ll have them thanking you later, here’s the list of sanity-savers on my list of things that make a new parent’s life ever-so-much easier.

The grandparents and friends have the cute outfits and gorgeous toys covered. Instead, provide the less glamorous items that make life easier. The useful stuff that you only find out about from other parents because it is hard to sell a product that comes into its own when your baby (and you) are not being cute crowd pleasers. They may not make you sigh with delight but may save some sleepless nights and frustration.

Here’s my list of unromantic – but hopefully helpful – products for new parents:

  • Lansinoh cream – because no matter what you do, your nipples are not baby-ready. The only way to get them ‘match fit’ is to breastfeed a child. Lansinoh helps to patch them up after each ‘training session’ and ease the soreness.

  • A good sorbolene hand cream – because in the early months you are always washing your hands, hanging out wet clothes and washing dishes and there is nothing as brutal on your skin as lots of water.

  • A home cooked freezer meal – because some nights you can get to 7pm without having a chance to think about dinner and a home cooked freezer meal is a little slice of heaven. Particularly if it comes in a recyclable foil dish that can be put in the oven and then straight in the recycling, thus avoiding putting your hands in water one more time.

  • A washable toilet bag to double as a mini-nappy purse – because big nappy bags become a burden after a while. It doesn’t take long to figure out all you need is a bag large enough to fit a couple of nappies, wipes, nappy cream, a clean onesie, and a smell-neutralising bag.

  • Bonjela – because, even if you believe teething pain doesn’t exist, the novelty of the weird, cool aniseed-flavoured jelly in their mouth breaks the cycle of crying and it helped both our babies settle on very drooly days.

  • Baby Fess saline nasal spray – because it is the best stuff to clear out their blocked noses, help them breathe, sleep better and get rid of the sniffles.

  • Vicks Baby Balsam – because it eases the coughs and smells gorgeous.


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