HDYDI: Newborn Gifts to Love

Still in newborn fog here. I emerge occasionally to take a shower, eat a semi-hot meal or break up a sibling fight, but I can *usually* be found sitting on the couch, nursing. Gianna has become a super big fan of cluster feeding. Except without the long stretch of sleep.

Oh newborns, they have fun breaking all the rules, don’t they?

Please don’t take that as a complaint. As I was doing the shhhh dance last evening, I caught a glimpse of my bouncing self in our bathroom mirror and I smiled. I am sleep deprived, still sporting the maternity belly, can’t fit into anything except maxis and yogas and I’m throwing back the water like no tomorrow, but you know what? This is the good life. The house may be a disaster, but that season will pass probably far quicker than I’d like.

Later this week, I promise promise promise to give you an update on life with six, along with the birth story. That’s right. The birth story is coming at you. It’s all written in my head, I just have to put it here. Hang with me and tell G to lay off the clusters, okay?

Now, on to newborn gifts I adore.

We have been blessed with some spectacular friends with oh-so-generous hearts. With every baby, I’m always amazed at just how giving people can be. As I said on Facebook last week, people should have babies more often. It brings out the best in all of us.

10+1 newborn gifts you'll love

1. Breakfast for a week. That’s right, breakfast. For me, if the going gets tough, we can throw together a “dinner of snacks.” You know the one. Cheese, crackers, a dash of fruit, a side of randomness and DINNER! But breakfast, especially because it comes so dang early, is always a tough meal for me. A sweet friend remembered my words and with every baby, she’s brought us a collection of some a-mazing breakfast foods. From chocolate banana waffles, to crock pot oatmeal to orange-raspberry scones, she spoils us good. Real good. So, if dinner isn’t your thang, consider taking a friend breakfast instead!

2. A meal calendar. Speaking of meals, if you like to organize things (me! me!) maybe setting up a meal calendar for a friend is right up your alley. We had a friend do this for us and it has been fabulous. I tell ya, I’m going to be super sad in two weeks when I actually have to walk back into my kitchen and, you know, cook. She was even gracious and smart enough to specify things like asking folks to bring disposable dishes and leaving a few days open so we can eat up the leftovers before the next meal arrives.

3. Honest Company subscription. This was a shower gift of mine and I must say, I’d never tried any of the Honest Company products until last week when my first monthly order arrived. I’m in love! I can specify what products I want, instead of having to be content with a set that’s determined by someone else. And, after I placed the order, it arrived just three days later. This has proven to be an awesome sauce kind of gift.

4. The unexpected. Going to the mailbox every day is like Christmas. Friends from far and wide have sent us unexpected, incredibly heartfelt gifts. I can usually be found in my living room, opening the box, crying my eyes out. Just ask Scott. No worries, they’re just happy, hormonal tears.

5. Aden + Anais swaddle blankets and burp cloths/bibs. Y’all. Stop the train. How did I not know about the greatness of these blankets before? Those swaddle blankets are seriously awesome, lightweight and so cute. The burb cloths also double as a bib. They’re fantastic because they really cover your shoulder and neck. I cannot love these more. It’s true.

6. Gift cards. Since I can typically be found trolling the interwebs at 1am, 3am and 5am, I’ve found gift cards to be helpful in supporting my shopping habit. You know what they say about baby girls. There is no window shopping.

7. The homemade. Recently, I received a gift in the mail of homemade jam and apple butter. I quite nearly passed out. Mary, you are awesome. As I unwrapped the bubble wrap from those jars, I could feel the tears coming. Someone got the fruit, boiled it, canned it, jarred it, shipped it – and they did it all for our family. Two days later we received a hand-knitted baby blanket that is just stunning. It’s the letters of the alphabet, but it’s beauty is so great, it may just have to be our baptism blanket. Whatever your gift, a handmade one is always a wonderful choice. You can see the love and it’s pretty darn awesome.

8. A gift bag of all the things no one tells you you’ll need. Back on baby number one, a sweet mom I knew brought me a sack full of things for the baby and things for me. In the baby’s goody bag were: infant Tylenol, a teething ring, alcohol wipes (for that cord) and vaseline (for the – ahem), gas relief drops and lavender oil for massage. For me? Witchhazel pads, raspberry leaf tea, a water bottle, Dermaplast, chocolate, disposable nursing pads and Lansinoh. If practical is your gig, then this might be right up your alley. For kicks and grins you might even want to throw in a bottle (or two) of Dos Equis. Your call.

9. Babysitting and a date night. A dear friend of ours is a NICU nurse. She texted last week and said, “Give me a date and I’ll buy y’all dinner and watch the kids.” Oh my stars. YES! I might’ve broken a toe scrambling to find my calendar.

10. Warm cookies. Here in Austin, a brilliant entrepreneur began Tiff’s Treats, a cookie company, that bakes fresh cookies and then delivers them hot, right to your door. That was a pretty welcome gift on a Friday afternoon. Yes, it was. Even if a cookie company isn’t in your ‘hood, baking cookies and dropping them off warm is never a bad idea. Never ever.

11. Kid shuttling. When a friend offered to bring my kids home from school for me, I jumped for joy. Gianna has proven that she ha-ates the carseat, so getting to avoid that fun ride has been pretty great.

Y’all know me. I could blab all night about even more great gift ideas. With newborns, the possibilities are endless. I’ll just wrap this up by saying, whatever you feel called to give will be the perfect gift – whether it’s store bought or homemade, thrifty or not, a gift of product or of time – whenever you give with love, that’s what matters. Back to the babymoon!


  1. Verdina on May 26, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    So glad to finally hear from you! Enjoy your “Babymoon”! I’m wondering how Luke is dealing with Gianna replacing him as the “baby” of the family. I’m sure the other kids are really enjoying her.

    BTW, Fr. Kevin didn’t even know you were pregnant! (We haven’t been friends for nearly ten years). I shared a few pictures with him. You know how much he loves babies! He is very happy for you guys!

  2. Catherine Boucher on May 27, 2014 at 8:21 am

    LOVE this list!

  3. Nicole on May 27, 2014 at 8:37 am

    Seriously – that breakfast idea is fantastic!!!!!! Never thought of that (and I had a husband who made me breakfast in bed almost every morning with I was post partum with my first – why didn’t that last for the 2nd?, I digress). Love the Honest Company, love the homemade, and warm cookies? Yum!!!!!!!!

    Sounds like all have been treating you so nicely.

  4. Kim on May 27, 2014 at 8:56 am

    Mom of 6/ great decorator/ great taste/ great organization! How do you do it?! You are so talented, and it looks like God is a strong member of your family and life. Congratulations on many, many blessings and successes! Your blog makes me happy!

  5. Emily Barnes on May 27, 2014 at 12:53 pm

    Love some of these ideas. Both for us in the future and for dear friends 🙂

  6. Megan Ryan on April 27, 2020 at 5:04 pm

    Any Catholic inspired baby gifts? I’m looking for something for a third baby that’s gender neutral that I can send by mail.

  7. Megan Ryan on April 27, 2020 at 5:32 pm

    Thank you. And this is exactly what I was looking for and could not find: https://chewslife.com/collections/silicone-baby-rosaries

    • Kathryn on April 29, 2020 at 8:36 am


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