Baby Gear Must-Haves For The First Year

Mastermind Weekend 1/16

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I'm Tina

I’m the owner of Carrots ‘N’ Cake as well as a Certified Nutrition Coach and Functional Diagnostic Nutrition Practitioner (FDN-P). I use macros and functional nutrition to help women find balance within their diets while achieving their body composition goals.


An in-depth, 4-week reverse dieting course for women who feel like their metabolism has slowed down, think they might have hormonal imbalance and can’t lose weight no matter what they do.

This post is sponsored by Similac as part of the Sisterhood of Motherhood campaign.

I can’t believe Quinn’s first birthday is just one week away. Crazy. Seriously, where does the time go? If I could do it all over again, especially with regard to getting ready for our little guy, I would definitely do some things differently. I remember stressing so much about what to register for and what to buy before Quinn arrived, but, in the end, it all worked out just fine. We had everything we needed and more. Of course, I wish I knew this then, so I just wanted to pass along some of our very favorite products that we relied on and loved during Quinn’s first year.

Baby Gear Must-Haves For The First Year


Oh, the Boppy. We still use it on a regular basis””maybe not as much as we did during Quinn’s first months, but it still gets a lot of use. As a newborn, I used the Boopy to breastfeed. As Quinn got bigger, we used it as support as he learned how to sit up. When he could hold a bottle, he would lay in it and feed himself. Nowadays, he’ll lay on it while playing with a toy or “reading” a book.

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And Murphy loves it too!

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Graco Little Lounger

Quinn spent a lot of timing lounging in his Little Lounger for the first few months of his life. As a newborn with an unpredictable sleeping schedule, it was nice having a place for him to snooze and hangout that was both easily accessible and transportable. Some of my favorite memories from last summer were hanging out with Mal and Murphy on our back deck with Quinn in the Little Lounger.

Chicco 360 Hook-On Chair

Quinn’s Hook-On Chair is definitely something I wish we owned sooner. We had a regular highchair, which was fine, but it was big and bulky and took up a lot of space. It was actually so big, we would usually end up feeding Quinn in the living room because it didn’t quite fit at the dining room table. His Hook-On Chair is much smaller, so now Quinn eats at the table with us, which we all enjoy a lot more. It also folds up, nice and neat (it even comes with a snazzy travel bag), which is great for when we visit family and friends.

BEABA Babycook Pro Baby Food Maker

My sister let me borrow her Baby Food Maker to make purees for Quinn when he was a little guy (How We Feed Our 9-Month Old), but I still use it a ton to steam fruits and veggies for him. He eats chunks of sweet potatoes, apples, and/or pears on the regular. And, bonus, it makes nutritious fruit and veggie purees to mix into my oatmeal, baked goods, and yogurt. It’s awesome.

Toy organizer

Quinn’s toy organizer was a life-changer for our little family. We use to keep his toys in our (tiny) living room, and, of course, they would end up all over the place, so our house would look like a total disaster. Now we keep Quinn’s toys in his bedroom and then just take a bin or two at a time from his organizer into the living room to play with. It makes life so much easier.

Chicco KeyFit Caddy + Chicco Activ3 Jogging Stroller = Chicco TRE

You’re probably thinking: Three strollers?! We are very fortunate and ended up with three strollers from Chicco, but if I had to pick just one, the TRE is THE STROLLER to go with. It’s basically the KeyFit Caddy for newborns (the car seat clicks right in) and a jogging stroller, but it isn’t as big as the Activ3, so it’s also a regular, forward-facing stroller. You really just need this one stroller and that’s it. It’s truly the best thing ever.


Honorable mentions

Other things we loved during our first year:

Question of the Day

Moms: What are your must-haves for the first year?



  1. I have a lounger similar to the one you mentioned and I loved it! It was so perfect for us when our guy was little. Plus, we moved when he was two months old so we were able to use it until his crib was delivered for daytime naps.

    I love boogie wipes! They are the best. And I agree that a booster seat is better than a traditional high chair. I need to break our boppy out!

  2. Love all these things, we have many if not all! We also use cloth diapers for burp clothes as they absorb alot more and are bigger, which also provided more coverage on your shoulder, lol.

  3. I always say that if you are having a baby you need 4 things.
    1. diapers
    2. the little baby long sleeved tees that snap in the front
    3. a breast pump
    4. a baby bjorn or something similar

    I felt like everything else was a luxury..but these were necessities!

  4. Burp cloths, boppys and Aden and Anais blankets are all essentials in my book. Other goodies include the play mat, learning toys and a jumper. You definitely need a place to put baby as well! I remember coming home from the hospital and saying, “now what?” We loved the Snug-A-Bunny.

  5. Baby bjorn, burp cloths, triple paste, babyganics protective ointment, fisher price jumperoo, oball…but I am only a little over 4 months into motherhood…i am sure the list will grow 🙂

  6. Thanks for this! Working on my registry now. I’ve also been referencing your burp cloth post as well! Did you use a carrier/wrap at all?

    1. @Carly:

      I have an ergo and my son loves it. i also have baby k’tan which is likes alright…prefers the ergo though 🙂 best of luck to you 🙂

  7. As a first time mom-to-be (due in September) I found this incredibly resourceful! I feel like my husband and I don’t even know where to begin with what we need for the baby. I just started working on a registry and it’s all so overwhelming. Plus, there are so many options under each category. This really helps and others feedback in the comments help too! Thank you!!

  8. The boppy pillow is by far one of our most used items! We also had a lounger similar to the one you have and yes, I love the baby food maker! I use it all the time, including this morning before I left for work! It’s fast and easy!

  9. When our guy was 5 or 6 months we got him a jumparoo and it was a r eal game changer for us. It gave me some hands free time where he would entertain himself so I could get stuff done and he still hangs out in it in the mornings while I wake up and get breakfast going.

  10. Our first baby is due at the beginning of August so we’re right in the midst of trying to gather all that we need – it’s tough to know what’s actually a “need” and what might not really be used. Thanks for posting this!

  11. Isn’t it crazy how much they change from when they’re born? My youngest niece is 6 months old and I was looking at the pictures from the day when she was born and she doesn’t look like that baby at all!…My sister loves her Bumbo seat – she’s used it for both of her kids. And yes, burp clothes/cloth diapers and a play mat for back and tummy time. Hope Murphy is doing better!

  12. Just keep in mind all little ones are so different. Our munchkin rarely spit up ( uh, way too many burp clothes!). She lived in an Infantino wrap the first couple of months as she liked to be snuggled and it was the only way I got anything accomplished. Also, i intended on making my own baby food but as it turned out, she hated the consistency of stage 1&2 foods. We ended up preparing soft table foods to share. No pureeing necessary. Yeah! Little ones outgrow things so quickly. I highly recommend mommy sharing/hand me downs. We shared a few things she loved and then purchased our own. As hard as it is, don’t stress, relish every moment because you will not believe how time flies!

  13. My list of baby must haves:
    Halo swaddle sleep sacks – could not live without them!
    Fisher Price Rock n Play – another could not live without item!
    Fisher Price Snugabunny swing
    Nose frida
    aden and adais blankets
    boppy pillow

  14. Some cheer to your day: Friday is National Donut Day! Yipee! Not sure what the donut shops will be offering. I know Dunks will be giving a free donut with any beverage purchase!

  15. T- I agree with your whole list, especially the lounger and boppy! a couple other must haves: A+D ointment, feetie jammies, Boon Grass Drying Rack and coffee. lots and lots of coffee.

  16. I couldn’t have survived without a double electric breast pump… I still have it in my closet and it is the one thing I can’t give away.

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