Things I never realised until Elise was born

My father often repeats these two phrases “we should all live life backwards” and “if you knew then what you know now” whenever I lament about something I should have done.
If only I could write this note to myself when I was pregnant.

1. Newborns and rompers do not go well together.
Very cute, but not always practical.
Have you tried to put a bodysuit on a tiny, wriggly newborn with a flimsy and fragile neck? Rompers look cute, but unless they have side buttons, ribbons or zips, don’t bother. 

My favourites are Uniqlo and H&M’s bodysuits which have side buttons and are very easy to wear for just borns. 

2. The sizes of baby clothes don’t always correspond with the size tags
Petit Bateau clothes are extremely teeny tiny and cutting runs very small.
The one of the left (Petit Bateau) is tagged 3 months and the H&M one on the right is tagged 0 to 1 month, but the one on the left is smaller. 

When organising clothes, try to separate them according to size rather than tags. It takes some experience, but just throw all the smallest clothes into the 0 to 3 month pile. 

Elise’s clothes are grouped in bundles of 0 to 3 months, 3 to 6 months, 6 to 9 months, 9 to 12 months and 12 to 18 months. She just turned 3 months old, but has to upgrade to the 6 month bundle soon because she’s in the 90th percentile for weight in her age group. 

3. A baby cot is the most under-utilised nursery item
A baby cot was one of the first items I purchased. It was one of the more expensive IKEA cot models, had two storage drawers underneath and could be converted into a toddler bed. It’s also currently in the nursery room collecting dust because it doesn’t have wheels. 

She first slept in a Moses basket which was easy for us to carry around the house, then she upgraded to a co-sleeper cot which could be placed on our bed. 

She’s now co-sleeping with us on the bed since it’s a lot more convenient to just roll her over to nurse at night instead of having to sit up and carry her out of the co-sleeper. Yes, I am that lazy. 

I have a playpen with wheels and intend to place it right next to our bed once she learns how to climb. 

Aforementioned co-sleeper cot & Daiso LED lamp in the background – cheap nightlight!

4. Cutting your baby’s nails is an acquired skill
Using nail clippers on an infant’s fingernails is like using a pair of garden shears to cut your nails. One wrong clip and baby will start bleeding. I didn’t listen to my relatives who advised that cutting with scissors were better until I just decided to use it one day. 

One snip and you’re done. Easy. Except you still have to file the edges and sides of their nails down so they can’t claw themselves, but somehow, mysterious scratch marks still manage to appear on their faces.

5. Only buy what your baby really needs

Maybe it’s the First Child Syndrome, where I bought everything and even some duplicates.

Exersaucer? Checked. Play yard? Checked. Play mat? Checked. Make that an educational playmat with 6 languages. 

Even though it’s my first child, 90% are preloved. I can’t afford to buy all brand new, and there are really cheap and unbelievable deals out there – like branded clothing bundles for the cost of one brand new piece of clothing.

I probably went overboard on this one, because I now have a motorised scooter, bicycle, books and kitchen play sets – and my baby hasn’t even learnt how to sit up yet.

Anything your baby doesn’t need YET just becomes clutter. If you don’t have enough space at home, try to get items which have multiple functions. 

The Combi Rashule chair is a daybed, rocker and high chair which can be reclined and lowered. Fisher Price’s Newborn to Toddler Rocker is suitable for newborns and can support children up to 5 or 6 years of age. 

All your baby really needs is a full tummy, a dry butt and you. 

Combi Rashule Chair

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