I swore that I would always remember the items that I used the most or couldn't do without when I had Will, and crazy how fast you can forget those essential items once you are in a different stage with your kids. So I wnated to jot down some of the 'must-haves' that the second time around really worked for us:
1) Rock and Play sleeper- holy cow! I had heard these were great and was skeptical, until Ellie wouldn't sleep in the pack and play, and only in bed with us. I didn't want to make this a habit, and was desperate to find an alternative, so we bought this (about $50 at Target) and it was the best. purchase. ever. We are believers now too!! She has slept great in this, uses it for naps and overnight- and as she is approaching 4 months - we know we need to get her out of it soon, but has been great since we started it, right before 3 months (we should have started sooner!)
2) Miracle Blanket - a great swaddle option! I love the Aden and Anais swaddle blankets, but they aren't strong enough for a fiesty sleeper. The Miracle Blanket (again found at Target, about $25) is so awesome we can't leave home without it and keeps her snug to stay asleep.
3) Boppy pillow - those first couple months of feeding, I absolutely love this! Now, as she's bigger, I don't use it as much, but for first 3 months, I find it SO essential.
4) Nursing bras, tanks, and pads - I am a total leaker with my milk, so an endless supply of nursing pads is important to me. I found that I really like the Johnson and Johnson brand. Also, a few good nursing tanks for night time - and bras for the day. Good investment to have several, so when leaking or spit up gets on this - no big deal to throw in the laundry :)
5) Baby Connect app - I paid a few dollars for this app, but was awesome to track all my feedings. This was my saving grace when I had no clue what time it was, when I last fed, or what side. Again, I probably really relied on it most heavily the first couple months, and now dont' use as much, but I still like to track her height/weight on it. Love this as I always had my phone with me during feedings, so was easy to update.
6) KickKee Pants - Sleep sacks/pjs: this brand is the BEST for sweet, soft, sleepy pajamas. They make you want to snuggle up your baby and wonder why your clothes don't feel like this. My favorite baby shower gift!
7) WATER - seriously, when I nurse my babies I get SO. THIRSTY. Have several large water jugs around - or better yet, have your husband get you some water :)
8) A good pump - I tried to stock up some milk so I had a good supply/extra's before going back to work. It's crazy how fast when going back to work that supply can deplete (hard to keep up with how much she is eating) but I'm so glad I dedicated my team/efforts while off work to do that so I didn't feel tied to always having to be attached to her. Another great benefit this time - is we have an outlet in our car, so I am able to pump a lot in the car, and then just reach back and feed her a bottle. Has helped a TON on car trips!
I think that's all I have off the top of my head - may need to edit this if I remember anything else!