Gift box of essentials for baby?

(30 Posts)
Ratata Sun 22-Jan-12 20:44:19

I hope this is ok to post in this forum. I wasn't sure where to post!

My brother and his partner are expecting their first baby. They don't know whether it will be a boy or girl yet. She is due at the start of March. I have bought a baby bath for them (it is what they wanted) but wanted to give a box of essentials or something when I go visit after baby is born.

Can anyone give me some advice on what would be good to put in this gift box? Me and DH have just started TTC our first and I don't know a lot about babies (I'm reading up though!), I've never looked after a baby before. So I'm not sure what essentials would be best. I thought about some Johnsons bedtime bath lotion and Johnsons shampoo but then wondered if newborns need shampoo...

If someone was going to give you a box of essentials, what would you like it to contain? What would be useful? All I know I'm going to get so far is some clothes. Also, is there anything you really wouldn't want?

Thanks in advance!

OP’s posts: |
Choufleur Sun 22-Jan-12 20:48:51

I did that for bil and sil. I put in muslin clothes, sudocrem, baby shampoo, wipes, cotton wool. Cant remember what else.

Ratata Sun 22-Jan-12 20:52:55

Thanks that gives me some ideas to go on smile

OP’s posts: |
Notquitegrownup Sun 22-Jan-12 20:55:32

Tube of metanium. Magic stuff. I had a tube as a birth pressie from a friend - looked a bit [hmmm] at the time, but soon realised that it was one of the best pressies ever!

curiousgeorgie Sun 22-Jan-12 21:00:48

My friend did this for me...

I wish I knew how to post a picture because it looked amazing! smile

It had 5 babygrows 0-3
a pack of short sleeved vests 0-3
Newborn nappies
A small teddy bear
A few Bibs
A couple of dummies
A baby tips book
A baby board book
Ashton & Parsons teething powder (which was a lifesaver!)
A cellular blanket
A fleece blanket
2 knitted hats
Baby socks and scratchmits (Turned over and inside out so they looked like roses)
Talc, baby lotion, various johnsons products....

It was all piled up and arranged to look like a cake, with nappies, muslins and the blankets making the outer layers, then decorated with ribbon and covered in celophane.. then as you opened each layer loads of other stuff was revealed, stuff I can't even remember...

It was fab!

Notquitegrownup Sun 22-Jan-12 21:03:33

And a bottle of wine too

Ratata Sun 22-Jan-12 21:06:35

Metanium - noted!

Wow curiousgeorgie that gift sounds fabulous! I've seen nappy and gift 'cakes' and they look great. Some really useful ideas there, thank you!

OP’s posts: |


izzybizzybuzzybees Sun 22-Jan-12 21:11:45

The asda baby event is on at the minute. The baby essentials box by johnsons is £8 and has products in it. I've bought this and added some items for a friend:

scratch mitts
vaseline(1st poo cleans off easier if vaseline is on bum!)
teething gel
calpol saline spray
sterilising tablets
hand cream
cotton wool balls
baby sponges
baby scissors
dry shampoo
Celebrations Minibox
2 cans of jack and coke (her pre preg tipple!)

hope that helps!

Ratata Sun 22-Jan-12 22:17:57

Thanks izzy some great ideas there!

OP’s posts: |
Flisspaps Sun 22-Jan-12 22:34:37

Personally I would like such a box to contain muslin cloths, sudocrem, Calpol and Ibuprofen, teething gel, wipes, and things like vests and babygros in size 0-3 or even 3-6 months might be worth considering as everyone seems to buy newborn clothes as gifts, which only last a few weeks.

A travel mug would have been a bloody godsend in the early days as I never got to drink a cup of tea whilst it was still hot.

Books. Stuff like the 'That's not my...' books.

Chocolate. A drink (like izzybizzy suggested) would be rather nice.

Junior paracetamol and ibuprofen - and a couple of syringes to administer it with!

When DD was born people included things like baby shampoo (didn't use it until she was 1), baby lotion (we still have all 5 bottles now, unused, and she's nearly 2), cotton wool balls (again, never opened any of them), talc (went in the bin, I don't know anyone who uses talc and it's just dust in a bottle) and sterilising tablets (we had a steam steriliser) so whilst the thought behind these things was much appreciated, most of it was a terrible waste of money really sad

oltob Sun 22-Jan-12 22:46:45

ditto metanium and, not so much for baby, but your SIL will be very grateful for if breast feeding, is lansinoh, miracle healer.
similarly a stretchy bracelet that she can use to remember which side she last fed from (for her wrist! - the safety pin on bra never worked for me, never tried really - tbh I always forgot whether I'd switched the bracelet but worked most of the time)
fliss - I am going out tomorrow and buying myself a travel mug that is a genius idea

Flisspaps Sun 22-Jan-12 22:50:08

oltob I think I got the idea from here. Genius, even being able to drink a warm (not hot) cup of tea was amazing after throwing away cup after cup of bloody tepid brews.

Ratata Sun 22-Jan-12 22:50:19

That's good to also know the things that you would rather not have fliss very helpful. Great idea about the travel mug!

I see the Ashton and Parsons teething powder is hard to come by at the moment, will keep my eyes peeled in local pharmacies as that seems to be where people are finding it!

OP’s posts: |
Emsgale Sun 22-Jan-12 22:51:18

I agree things like lotion and shampoo I had comimng out my ears but the things that are,essential and you are forever buying are
nappy cream drapoline is amazing stuff!
new born nappies (pampers asda or tesco)
wet wipes
nice extras are
baby grows
grow/sleeping bag (brilliant)
(i found people bought bigger thinking id get all small stuff but dd was 6lb 11oz and everything was to big so tiny baby (up to 7 1/2lb) or new born (up to 10lb)

TheUniversalsHere Sun 22-Jan-12 22:53:44

That sounds like a lovely idea and there are some great suggestions on here. Maybe you could stick with the bathing theme and flesh it out a bit? Stuff we found useful...

Thermometer (Philips Avent does a pretty blue flower shaped one that can be used for room and bath)
Bath toy (won't be used initially but nice for when older)
A fave present of ours was a Cuddledry bamboo cow towel (won't attempt link as bound to stuff up!) - our DS loves being wrapped in it after his bath- they are lovely and soft.
Boots does some great cotton wool squares- we found these really good for initially doing bums before moving on to wipes. They were a bit more substantial than cotton wool balls - about £2.50 for a pack.
Sudocrem definitely

FWIW baby shampoo not needed certainly initially. Scratch mitts a waste of money I think though others seem to disagree - depends on you I guess!

Other useful bits...
Anbesol (stronger than bonjela). Also Sophie le giraffe and teething rings are great. Plastic backed bibs help keep clothes from getting soaked (sainsburys do these in packs of 5 or so if you have one with clothing section near you.(can you tell my DS is teething at the mo?!)

Good luck TTC and make sure you enjoy each other's company while trying- babies are all consuming when they arrive! X

HoneyandHaycorns Sun 22-Jan-12 23:05:01

fliss, after 38 years I have finally discovered what talc is for!! Yes, it truly does have a purpose! smile

For months, I have struggled at the side of the swimming pool to pull dd's horrible rubbery swimming cap over her thick long hair. Cue lots of whinging from dd and swearing from me. Then last week, wise other mum at the side of the pool who only looked about 12 but obviously knew more than me offered me some talc to put in said horrible rubbery cap. Was a bit hmm at first but tried it, and the cap slid on dead easily. Was totally shock to discover after all these years that talc was not a pointless invention after all!!

OP, it's a lovely idea but agree with others that I would avoid shampoo etc. If you want to include toiletries of some sort, aqueous cream is good and suitable for sensitive skin. I would avoid parenting type books but definitely include some board books. Yes to nappies (unless you know they are using cloth ones), yes to wipes, no to cotton wool. If you include a teddy, make sure it's suitable from birth. And yy to stuff for mum as well. My favourite pressie post dd was some audio books that I could listen to while breastfeeding. smile

TinyDiamond Sun 22-Jan-12 23:07:33

Some baby nail clippers or a file would've been useful in this house. Teething powders definitely. Also, these amazing things called 'sock ons' you can get from mothercare. For some reason baby socks, even in the teenyest size are always too big and never stay on. These little elasticated sock ons are worn over and are a genius invention. My daughter is 5 months and still uses them over her socks now.
Personally I wouldn't put in any johnsons products as I can't stand the smell but maybe just one bottle of a gentle baby bath and body wash like one of the organic ranges or the simple baby range. Those things last ages anyway.
Cotton wool is good as you get through loads.

A few things that we didn't get bought and then went out and bought ourselves at a later date are: a swimming nappy...go for size 3-6 months as not so likely it would get used much before that.
A baby hairbrush/comb-who knows whether baby will be born with hair, but ours was-lots of.
Hooded towels, very useful but avoid the teeny tiny ones as they don't last long. We have a fab one from ikea.
You can never have enough nice quality baby blankets.

Could be some ideas for pressies as everybody usually buys clothes, most of which never got used anyway. If you do buy clothes get a gift receipt so they can change size if they want to. We ended up with enough clothes for plenty of outfit changes a day for 3-6 months. But not much else. They were all summer things tho as it was august when she was born-but didn't fit any of it until at least nov, so a bit wasted. Anyway, I digress. Can you tell I can't sleep!

oltob Sun 22-Jan-12 23:12:50

teetha sachets are just as good as A&P imo, less of a faff to administer too. My DD didn't actually get her first tooth until nearly a year (although we thought she was teething from about 3 months)

Universal's 'Sophie Giraffe' is a great one, DD loved hers and it's a toy, comforter, entertainment, teether all in one. Seems a bit pricey for what it is but very worth the money. There is a Sophie bath toy now too but I'd stick with the original.

It's a really thoughtful idea and I'm sure they'll love it. Oh I'd second not bothering with scratch mitts, look for the sleep suits that have turn over cuffs at the wrists, much easier to keep on.

therumoursaretrue Sun 22-Jan-12 23:20:26

I think this is a great idea and really hope somebody makes up one for me when the LO is born!

I did one of these for a friend recently, also bought the johnsons baby essentials box izzy mentioned and then added in some extras. I think most have been covered here.

Also added some mama mio stuff which I knew my friend wanted as a little treat for her and a bottle of champers.

Grumpla Sun 22-Jan-12 23:21:22

A really nice bath oil for mum. I rarely had time for a bath in the first few months and NEVER had time for body lotion etc afterwards. My friend gave me a Cowshed one which was lovely and really moisturising too.

To be honest a massive box of size 1 nappies and a bottle of wine would do me! I got loads of toiletries etc which never got used when DS was born, multiple thermometers etc.

More unusual / useful things:
A nightlight

Handcream (the nutrogena one is good)

Graze box subscription Thingy? or a mini hamper of long-lasting dried fruit, nibbles, nuts etc & some small tupperware snack pots that can be used again when weaning.

Good collection of short stories / interesting magazine subscriptions? I found it impossible to focus on novels but hated feeling as though I wasn't reading / thinking about anything other than baby.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Sun 22-Jan-12 23:23:59

For my cousin I got:
Nipple Shields.
Teething Gel.
Cradle Cap remedy.
Nasal sucky bulb thingy.
Having had my own babies, I tried to think of everything that I needed, for all the crap stuff that occured, and didnt have to hand when it happened. (iyswim)
I personally wouldnt bother with vests, babygros, shampoo, lotion, talc or cotton wool. (I still have cotton wool from when DS was born. He is 15!) Everyone will buy this stuff. Think outside the box! Everyone will buy teddies, and they are a PITA!
I also added a big bar of chocolate,
A sleep mask,
Ear plugs, and
a miniature of Brandy!
Everything was put into a nice recyclable basket which she later kept her nappies in.
Next time, id add something humourous, like the Haynes Manual for Babies!

My cousin said it was an excellent gift, and she used everything, including the ear plugs and brandy! grin

ItsTimeToBurnThisDiscoDown Mon 23-Jan-12 00:15:09

My DSis did this for us, she got a basket and filled it with:
Newborn nappies
Infacare bath stuff
An outfit
Nappy bags (really useful!)
A bottle
Hotel chocolat slabs with "Mummy" and "Daddy" for DH and I
Lots of other little bits I can't think of now!
It was lovely and really useful!

Lots of people gave us clothes (we were very lucky!), ranging between newborn and 3-6 months, DS was dinky though so we were also given tiny baby stuff for him! We started using scratch mitts, but he's been sucking his thumb since about 6 weeks old, so we stopped using them as they got soggy! Sock ons are fab too, and also Dribble Ons, which are neckerchief style bibs for dribbly babies.

Oeisha Mon 23-Jan-12 15:31:39

1) newborns do not need shampoo/bodywash. Water does the job fine mostly. Their skin is also often very sensitive and these can dry them out.
2) Talc - no longer recommended for use on babies as it's easily inhaled and there's some worry that this may add to SIDS risk, or at least cause cholking/coughing.

Currently trying to encourage my 1st out so can't give a comprehensive list. 2 things mums have consistently mentioned to me:
1) Lansinoh nipple cream
2) Weleda Calendula nappy rash/changing cream

justhayley Mon 23-Jan-12 16:21:53

You can buy already done baby essential boxes - mamas and papas have some lovely clothes ones and johnsons baby do a bps full of all the bath stuff and lotions needed

HollyPockett Mon 23-Jan-12 19:17:47

What about something for Mum? I went to a baby shower recently and it never occurred to me to buy for the baby!! I bought lots of lovely bath stuff so the new mum could hand over baby for ten minutes have a bit of her time. She finally got around to it three months later but enjoyed it never the less smile

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