Pregnant For The Second Time? Here is The Ultimate List For a Second-Time Mama
When I was pregnant for the first time, I was inundated with lists from friends of all the things I would need for baby and me. It was kind of great. I also had the time to be excited about it, do the research, browse the shops, and figure out what I wanted. Second time around, it was a little different. Of course, the excitement was there but in a very different way. It was less about the excitement of getting cute onesies and cool mum gadgets, but more about the joys of making our family more complete, and giving a sibling to our child. Nevertheless, a baby is still a physical person joining your family at the end of the day, and whilst you may have tons from baby number one – it is likely that you will still need to get a few things. Things are a little hazier second time around and it’s easy to forget what you’ll actually need given all the stuff you likely already have. So here is a round up of the essentials:
Nappies – check if you have any of the small sizes left from baby number one.
Bottles, Teats & Pacifiers – I did not use a pacifier for baby number two, however bottles need to be re-bought from baby to baby, as well as teats as these do get very worn down from all the washing and sterilising and aren’t advisable to keep for long periods of time.
Formula – if you are planning on doing formula or mixed feeding
Wipes – the old wipes you may have left over may have dried out, and even if you are still using wipes for your eldest, you tend to go through a LOT of wipes for a new born, so it’s worth having a box ready. My favourite are Water Wipes
Medicine Bag – the good thing is, baby number two can most likely share the same medicine bag as baby number one, just ensure you have enough of the essentials because the baby dose is so large (as the meds are weak) and so regular that a 3-4 day fever can pretty much wipe out most of the bottle
Baby Creams – the daily creams we use are a moisturiser (Doublebase Gel, which came highly recommend for newborns from my Pediatrician), nappy rash cream (although widely used I found Sudafed a bit too strong, and preferred Bepanthen instead) and Vaseline for the feet, chest and back – I was taught by my maternity nurse that applying a thick layer after bath before bed helps prevent colds
Disposable Changing Matts – these are great to have because you can easily throw them away without having to disinfect your matt after every explosion you may have to clean up
Stretchmark Oil/Cream - I know most people think stretchmarks are genetic and so cannot be avoided if they're meant to occur, but even if this is the case, you lose nothing by moisturizing daily. The Oil that worked very well for me is the Mannequins Vitamin E Oil, having tried every stretchmark cream on the market. It's easy to forget this daily ritual second time around, and even if it can make my stretchmarks slightly lighter or less visible, I'm happy to try it!
Toothbrush and teething toys – I like to keep these in the house from day-one as you’re never quite sure when teething will start, and the agony your child can be in is heartbreaking, so that is one thing I like to be as readily prepared for as I can. For a round-up of our go-to teething toys, click here
Second Pram – when my number two was born, number one was 18 months old and still in a stroller, so I had to buy a new stroller. Wanting the ease and flexibility of taking them out together, I opted for a double stroller. I did quite a lot of research, wanting something as lightweight as possible and easy to fold. I ended up going for the Mountain Buggy Duo, which I love and still use today. However, for travel this isn’t ideal as with two small babies, getting around an airport without a pram wasn’t an option, and this pram has to be checked in. Once my second one turned 6 months and we had an upcoming work trip to Paris, I ended up needing another carry-on Pram. Not wanting to invest in another Baby Zen Yo-Yo (as having two seemed excessive) I did the research on all the similar but significantly cheaper alternatives, and discovered that the Yo-Yo is the best for a reason – it is not only one of the lightest prams but it also has the highest weight allowance, making it usable for close to 5 years.
Car Seat – if your babies are reasonably close in age, you will likely have to buy an additional car seat
Monitor – I found that the Nest was a great monitor and app for two separate cameras
Diaper bag – if you are still using a diaper bag for your eldest, it’s likely that they won’t need as much stuff as they did when they were first born, and hence it may be a good time to re-assess the size of your eldest’s diaper bag, because lugging around two is no easy feat. When my son was 18 months and my daughter was born, he was pretty happy to have a small rucksack he could carry himself filled with the essentials (wipes, diapers, sanitiser, mini-soap dispenser, water bottle and snack). I LOVED the diaper bag (linked here) I discovered for baby number two, and it had so many pockets it was pretty perfect for managing two babies
SkipHop Portable Changer – if your babies are close in age and the eldest is still in nappies, you may need to get an additional one of these, given they will be in different sized nappies and may not always be out together at the same time. This is probably my most used baby accessory and has been so ideal to have when running to do a nappy change when out and about. Instead of lugging a full baby bag to the bathroom, I’d always just take this small portable one, which clips on to you pram also
Nursing items – I had a lot left, but you may want to check for the essentials: breast pads, Lanisoh nipple cream, Tena Lady Pants for the bleeding post baby (these are my biggest pregnancy tip ever!!), nursing bra (to allow you to pump hands free – total game changer) and compression pants, which help your wiggly bits slowly get a bit firmer post birth, but do check with your Doctor for when you are able to wear them accordingly to your delivery.
Breast Pump – remind yourself to organise this again – my best tip is to rent a hospital grade pump, one of the best on the market is the Madela Symphony
A baby book, mile stone cards and a keepsake box – it’s easy to lose the excitement of novel things such as these second time around, but do make sure you keep all the same mementos, because the baby phase flies so quickly and you’ll want to look back at all of your children and remember the same mile stones
Cot & Changer – if you do have babies close in age, you may need to get some of the bedroom essentials, including a cot, changer and sangenic bin (if your eldest is also still in nappies).
Present for Baby Number One - something easy to forget but this really was a great tip for me, and even if your Number One is too small to actually understand the situation or process it (in my case Number One was 17 months), it was still a lovely moment. I wasn't quite sure how my eldest would react and so I prepared a few small gifts and wrapped them up, to give him over the course of the week. I had forgotten how much a new born actually sleeps during the day in the immediate days and weeks and so I actually ended up being with my eldest more than expected. I had initially prepared these gifts thinking he needed some distractions whilst I was MIA with a new baby. Regardless of the age, a small gift from the new baby to it's new sibling can never go wrong. And it definitely makes your eldest feel more involved in the process.
I used pretty much all the muslins, bibs, swaddles, baby grows, socks, hats, clothes, baby towels and cute little seasonal outfits from baby number one to baby number two despite being different sexes (I did luckily go very neutral first time around). The one thing I did buy though was a hospital outfit as I loved the idea of keeping each of my babies hospital outfits as a special momento for them.
To remind yourself of all the general baby essentials (as I assume here that most can be shared from baby number one) head to our Post on Newborn Essentials and our Hospital Essentials list for giving birth.