When you are expecting a little one it can be overwhelming thinking about what you need for baby. You try to rack your brain of everything you think you could possibly need and your list grows and grows. I had my first LO (little one) last September and was fortunate enough to have 3 baby showers (2 family and 1 work). I was excited to start my registry and did lots of research on what others recommended to buy. I went into it really trying to only get what I thought was needed. Now 5 months later, I have compiled a short list of my favorite/most used things that I received at my showers. One of my other goals was to start my LO’s book collection, so I have included some of my favorite books below as well. Enjoy!

Best Items:

  • Diaper Pail

On my registry I originally had a diaper pail (Diaper Genie) but changed it to a different brand (Baby Trend). I did this because you could use your own trash bags/grocery bags in the Baby Trend one. Many diaper pails (like Diaper Genie) require you to use their refill bags; this just adds on another cost. So depending on how much you want to invest, go the inexpensive route and get one that you can use any ol’ trash bag. The pail has done a great job and is definitely a necessity if you want to keep those stinky smells at a minimum.

  • Bottle Warmer

If you plan on using bottles, a bottle warmer is a life saver. It is a quick and easy way to warm up your LO’s bottles so you don’t have to do it the old school way (warm up water in the microwave – sit bottle in warm water and wait). I received the Doctor Brown’s warmer but there are many good ones out there on the market. I also like the size and portability! I am able to take it with me when traveling.

  • Essentials: Diapers, Creams, Soaps, Diaper Bag, etc.

People love to buy baby clothes, there is no doubt about it, they are just so darn cute! Clothes are the most popular gift at baby showers, so what about the essentials? Nobody wants to bring boring ol’ diapers to a shower. I had a couple of guests who did gift me essentials and I am so grateful for it. Any amount of diapers, creams, soaps, etc. are a great practical gift. No matter if your LO is a girl or boy…all babies need the essentials. Between the diapers I was gifted at the shower and the ones I took from the hospital, I didn’t have to buy ANY newborn diapers. I was also able to try out different brands of diapers, soaps, etc. because I was gifted a variety. This helped me discover what worked and what didn’t. It may seem like a boring gift but it is super practical.

  • Car: Behind the Seat Mirror

When you first get the hang of going places with your LO it can be a little nerve racking. Some babies love car rides and others hate it. The behind the seat mirror is a necessity, especially if you commute with your LO frequently. It allows you to look in the rear view mirror and see the reflection of your baby. You can see if he/she is crying, asleep, etc. A lot of times my LO fusses in the car, so I can look in the mirror and see that she is probably fussing because she spit her pacifier out (she loves to do that).

  • Baby Monitor

Even if your LO sleeps in your room, it is still great to have a baby monitor. There are a variety of different kinds – sound, video or motion. We have a fairly inexpensive sound/video one that allows us to see/hear our LO. It actually has a sleep mode to where it only turns on if it detects movement or sound. It’s nice to be able to see your LO. Even though she currently sleeps in our room we use it once we put her down for the night at 7:30. No matter what type you get, they are useful!

I work at a library so of course I received many books at my work shower but also my other showers. Below is a list of just a few of my favorites, there are so many great children’s books!

Favorite Books:

Love you Forever by Robert Munsch

This book is so sweet, I would recommend getting it at some point but make sure to have a box of tissues near by.

Corduroy by Don Freeman

Any of the Corduroy books are great. I read the Halloween and Christmas ones to my LO around the holidays. I loved these books as a kid and hope my LO enjoys them too.

Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn

This book is sweet and another one that was read to me when I was a kid.

Mama Do You Love Me? By Barbara M. Joosse

My favorite children’s book of all time. I read this one quite often out loud to my LO when I was still pregnant. She coos a lot when I read it to her now.

On the Night You Were Born by Nancy Tillman

I brought this book with me to the hospital for my induction and read it to my LO soon after she was born. I love anything by Nancy Tillman and recommend her books. They are sweet and have beautiful illustrations.

Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

Goodnight Moon is a classic and one I love to read to my LO during her bedtime routine.


The start of her book collection. 


What I have suggested may work for some but not others, the important part is to do your research and seek advice! After spending some time online researching, my mom, sister and sister-n-law ended up recommending a couple of items that made my list above.

Whether you are an expectant mother trying to get your registry together or a family member/friend trying to find the perfect gift – celebrating a new baby is such a joyous occasion! Lastly, don’t forget to utilize your library’s resources. We have children’s books, CD’s, DVD’s and story times. We also have many resources for parents including parenting, pregnancy, preparing for baby books, CD’s, DVD’s and more.


Written By: Maura Sudkamp, Emerging Technology & Design Specialist for the Kenton County Public Library and first time mom running on lots of love and coffee. 


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