Becoming a parent for the first time can be a little overwhelming. What’s worse is, while the cute new baby is being showered in gifts, the tired new parents (who’ve done way more work if we’re honest) often get nothing. To right this wrong, we’ve compiled a list of gifts to help cheer up the new parents in your life: and hopefully make their transition that bit easier. From entertaining reads to things to help them find a moment of calm, here are our top picks of gifts for anyone who’s suddenly found themselves responsible for a little one.
For those still expecting (i.e. those who still have time to read), we recommend a book. We have a number of books to inspire, advise and give a lighthearted glimpse into what parenthood will be like. ‘The Newborn Identity - Revelations from the First Year of Parenting’ by Twisteddoodles is a hilarious ramble through pregnancy and the first few months of parenthood. Filled with doodles and cartoons, this lighthearted read will connect instantly with new parents. It’s the perfect way to give the gift of a laugh to someone who probably needs it.
We also highly recommend ‘The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read (and Your Children Will be Glad That You Did)’ by Philippa Perry. This gem of a book is a must read for all parents ever. It’s filled with simple, easily implementable tools to enable parents to nourish the relationships between them and their children. Looking at our attitudes to pregnancy and parenthood, as well as our own childhood experiences, Perry shows how to connect with children and ultimately understand them better - because we all want to not only love our children, but also like them!
For feminist parents-to-be (or non-feminists who need a little push), Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s small and compact read ‘Dear Ijeawele, A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions’ is a must. Originally written as a letter to her friend, this book gives 15 direct, insightful and thoughtful suggestions to raise a strong and independent baby girl. What’s lovely about this book is that although it was written for one specific little girl in her native Nigeria, the message it conveys is universal - how we speak about, and to our daughters matters.
If there’s one thing getting a lot of parents through the feat of pregnancy or baby-minding, it’s a good cup of tea. But having a baby in the house means you probably won’t have twenty minutes to sit and drink your cuppa in peace, and it also makes spills a no-go. Thankfully, these Frank Green Coffee Cups are non-spill (and stylish!), making them perfect for around the house as well as trips to the park.
For the mum’s who go down the breastfeeding route keeping hydrated is essential. I mean, cooing at your baby all day is thirsty work. Take one little thing off their minds with an Eau Good Water Bottle with binchotan charcoal filter. It quickly filters tap water without any fiddly plastic parts, and (even better) doesn’t have to be changed for six months, so it’s one less thing to worry about...
The mini supoon is a nifty little invention; perfect for parents-to-be who are all about practicality. It’s both a spoon and a spatula so you can use it for feeding the little one some baby food, or for scraping the last bit of peanut butter out of the jar after they’ve been put down for the night. It’s also designed with a bend so it sits up off a surface for minimal mess (trust me, things are going to be messy enough as it is.)
Life can speed up extraordinarily for new parents, so sometimes the best thing you can give them is a little break. A few moments of luxury can mean the world when you’ve just spent 30 minutes trying to change a nappy. Consider one of the deliciously scented bars of soap from The Handmade Soap Company to make washing your hands into a little act of self-care.
Or maybe a soothing lavender essential oil from The Nature of Things to help get both them and the baba back to sleep. We’re also sure any parent would appreciate the gorgeous smell of a La Bougie candle or diffuser to cover up some of the less gorgeous smells that come with a new baby. Even better, all three of these ranges are made in Ireland!
Short of buying them some sort of child-raising robot, there’s not really anything you can do to make being a new parent less hectic. But even a small gift or a card can show someone that you’re thinking of them, and that can mean the world. So take a minute away from playing with the newborn (we know they’re adorable, okay?) and check in with the new parents in your life- they’re the real heroes.