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When a new baby first arrives, everything changes. As a new parent, a lot of people offer gifts for mom and baby, but, it is important to remember dad, too!
During the flurry of activity that comes with bringing a baby home, dads sometimes feel a little left behind. It’s nice to give them something special, just for them, to make sure they know they have just as important a role in taking care of this new addition to the family.
These gifts are sure to help the new dads transition into their new role 🙂
A Manly Carrier
- Deuter Comfort Light Air – Framed Hiking Carrier. I can’t even tell you how many times we get asked about this carrier! It is breathable so your back doesn’t get hot and the kid stays cool too; it distributes the weight evenly for long walks (or hikes) with minimal discomfort; and it stands up on its own for you to buckle them in and take them out. We love the cover that keeps the sun and/or rain drizzle off their head. The seat is like a bicycle style seat that allows the legs to drop down comfortably into a stirrup style leg holder (which we didn’t use too often – we let our babies’ legs just dangle). We used it as soon as the baby was able to sit upright on their own without support. Something about this carrier put them to sleep so that was another big benefit. (Maybe it is the walking motion? Who knows!)
You may be thinking, well, do I really need another carrier? It is a personal preference, but I think different carriers serve different purposes. This is great for longer time periods — like a day at the zoo or a hike. For just a little help around the house to free your arms? See item #2 🙂
A Helping Hip
- Tush Baby Hip Seat Carrier. My husband thinks I can hold the kids for so long is that I have hips (something he just doesn’t have). Well, he actually bought this carrier for himself to solve that problem and it turned out to be a favorite for both of us. The recommended weight is for newborns (8 lbs) to 3 year old toddlers (44 lbs). I’ve even used it when with my toddler was hurt and needed to be held and rocked–it put him right to sleep as he was crying, but this hip carrier saved me (because he is heavy)!
I love it around the house just to give me some support. It makes a huge difference when you are holding the baby for more than just a few minutes. It is also nice that they are not fully enclosed because it is easy to pick them up and put them back down without all the straps. It is also easy to pack if you needed to take it along with you. Since the design is more open, you can pat/hold them for comfort and it helps you give your full hug warmth and easily put them down (without loud velcro or snaps or release of pressure).
Clean Diaper Changes
- Bum Brush. This is one of the gadgets that allow you to casually open the door for the conversation with the new dad to help with the diaper changes. This gently distributes diaper cream/ointment on the baby’s bum without getting your fingers wet. This is especially helpful for the cream with zinc oxide because those are so thick and white and you kind of get that stuff everywhere when the baby is moving around. Now, not all dads are squeamish when it comes to rubbing cream all over the baby bum, but for those that are, this will be a life saver. For everyone else, it helps make this task just a little bit easier and that includes moms, too.
- Bath Pad Kneeler. Another gift item to discuss the sharing of responsibilities! Bath time can be a great time for the dad and baby to bond! Make it a little easier for him (and his knees) with a bath pad kneeler. It makes a big difference in comfort from the hard tile floor. Bonus tip: when the kids make it to sports – bring this along as cushion comfort on the bleachers 🙂
Monitoring During the Drive
- Backseat Mirror. It’s common to equip the main car with all the baby stuff: the sun shades, the car seats, the mirrors, the car seat protectors, etc. If the mom drives the baby around most of the time, the dad’s car doesn’t really get all the extras. You might get the seat base for the dad’s car, but since all that stuff adds up ($), that tends to be all they get. While it would be nice to fully equip both cars, most people attempt to share those items. The problem? It is hard to remember and to pass things go back and forth. If he is not the primary driver, and his car doesn’t have the full set up, give the dad some stress relief by letting him have his own backseat mirror. It really puts your mind at ease to see the baby is doing ok — or even better, sleeping through the ride.
Bedtime Board Book
- Your Baby’s First Words Will Be Dada, by Jimmy Fallon. Books are a great way to establish a bedtime routine and you can never start those early enough. This is a great addition to your little one’s new library and will have special meaning to the new dad. Board books are a must when they are infants (save those real pages for the older kids — something I’ve learned the hard way). This is a simple book, but any opportunity to point out animals and animal sounds is always fun.
Grilling Dinner to Perfection
- Weber Grill Thermometer. What dad list of gifts would be complete without a grilling accessory? This is the perfect gift for a grill master that is taking on the responsibility of feeding his family. We started grilling at home a lot more since having babies. A relaxing dinner out at a restaurant has become a distant memory, and we find ourselves saving time, money, and our sanity by eating at home. This neat little accessory takes all the guesswork out of grilling the perfect steak to medium/rare perfection. Also, making sure all our grilled meats are safe to eat for our kids is a priority so this is a great gift for the long term.
This is a short list of a few items that will really help make dads get excited about their new role. The best gift of all is the addition of the new healthy, happy baby!