There is a new baby on the way for your family and it has been a while since a little one ran around in your home. You might find yourself wondering what you need for your home to make visits from your family with the new baby easier on everyone. Maybe your family is coming into town for the holidays and you want to know how to accommodate. Travel can be stressful so I have made a list of items and ideas that will make everyone want to visit Grandma’s House.
Disclaimer: This list was created for visiting a grandparent not a full-time caregiver situation. If baby visits the grandparents frequently, you may want to invest in more items.
1. Diapering Essentials
Being a mother who has found myself in desperate diapering situations, (car breakdowns, sudden illness, bad weather) it is very nice to keep a stash of diapers and wipes at Grandma’s House. Be mindful of size of the diapers and ask the parent what size the child wears before a visit. Every baby is different but in our home our babies don’t wear the size Newborn, 1 or 2 very long. My mom even has a stash of adjustable cloth diapers at her house, in case I’m in a pinch.
In my home, I have created diaper caddies for each floor. Each caddy contains diapers, a pack of wipes, diaper rash cream, a changing pad and anti-bacterial gel in a pump. Having a caddy that can be carried around Grandma’s House instead of hauling around my diaper bag has been very nice. You could even use a plastic shower caddy. Here is a link to an example of the caddy I use. Click here.
I even keep one in the truck of my car.
2. Play yard
This product is essential to safe sleeping for babies and toddlers. Having one at the grandparents house helps the family have less to pack and gives the mobile toddler a place to play.
3. Safety/Babyproofing Items
Making sure those sweet babies stay safe at your house is very important. You don’t want their memories of the holidays at Grandma’s House to be associated with an ER visit. Every house is different but I would take this very seriously. Gates for stairs are a must and sharp corners on tables and counters should be covered. Household chemicals should be locked up. You can visit your local Target store for reasonably priced electrical outlet, door knob and corner covers. Its a small price to pay to make sure no little ones get hurt. Click here, for a article from AARP about keeping your grandchildren safe at your home. Consider collecting important phone numbers like poison control and local pharmacies and keep them handy. I have my address and directions to my house posted on the side of my refrigerator in case someone needs to call 911.
Get a digital ear or temporal thermometer. I promise you will use it, even when the kids aren’t there. It will be so helpful in case someone isn’t feeling well at your house. You can monitor the baby even while he or she sleeps. Having Infant and/or Children’s Tylenol is nice to have as well in case baby runs a fever in the middle of the night.
5. Outdoor Protection
Seasonal items like sunscreen and bug repellent that are safe for babies is a huge help to mom and dad. Parents literally have to pack half the house to bring the baby anywhere and this is an item that can be easily forgotten. We use Aveeno Baby products for our sensitive skin children.
6. Baby Laundry Detergent
It is nice to have some extra clothing at Grandma’s house if possible (My mom loves to shop yard sales for clothing extras for her house) but with babies growing so quickly sometimes its hard to keep up with the correct size. If you keep baby sensitive detergent on hand, like Dreft or Fragrant Free Tide, you can wash soiled clothes quickly while mommy and baby take a nap.
7. Toys and Books
Another reason to hit the next yard sale you see. Having a basket of toys and books at Grandma’s can help entertain a little one while the adults talk and prepare meals. Toys at Grandma’s are different than the ones at home so they will be engaging.
At 6 months or sometimes earlier a baby can start solid foods. This means the baby will need some type of high chair for family meals. With our first child my mother bought a full size high chair, it was very inconvenient and bulky. She often mentioned it got in the way at her house. With our second baby we purchased a Ciao Baby Chair, a portable folding high chair that folds like a camping chair. It is very easy to use and clean. Not only can it be used at the dinner table, we take it to the park, restaurants and the front porch. The best part is that the Ciao Baby Chair folds up nicely and was stores easily in Grandma’s closet or under a bed. It is available in many colors including neutral colors for grandma’s with lots of grandbabies. They even have Mossy Oak and Collegiate Sports Teams.
A few extra bowls, cups and spoons are helpful as well.
There are many other things you can purchase to have at your house for convenience but this was a list of essentials for occasional visits that are a huge help to new parents. I am a thrifty mom, trying to be very efficient and not break the bank. We believe these are great ways to make it easier for your children to bring their children to Grandma’s house.
Hope you make lots of cherished memories with your grandchildren this holiday season.