Family Lifestyle: Daily Essentials @12 months

Now that we have an almost one year old (say whaat?!), daily life is very different from those foggy newborn days. The changing bag gets re-filled with nappies and snacks, but the contents barely changes; we can pack the car for a night away and still be able to see out the back window because we’re not so worried about having to take everything and the kitchen sink “just in case”, and we can even go for a walk and stop for a coffee without needing much more than our coats. But we have definitely built-up a selection of family essentials that we use everyday and could not live without, they’re just not necessarily the same ones we were using when Freddie was tiny.

Becky did a fantastic post a few months ago on newborn essentials that you should all check out if you haven’t already, and I thought this would be a good next step. You won’t find nappies, a pushchair and a car seat on this list, because I figured that by this point you’ve probably got those sorted, but here are a few things that might make your days that bit easier (or give you something to look forward to if you’re still at the oh-my-goodness-we-only-brought-one-change-of-vest stage.)

Baby’s essentials
H&M baby socks
I bought a pack of these on a whim when Freddie was newborn and discovered that they are the best baby socks EVER. They simply do not come off! We’ve gone through 3 sizes already and find them thick enough for those first few cautious feet-dragging steps.

Sleeping bag
We loved the Arden & Anais muslin sleeping bags this past summer, but have used coser ones since then. I really rate the sleeping bags from Matalan, but as long as they’re easy to fasten and are warm enough for the time of year, then I’m not fussy.

High chair
We LOVE our Stokke Tripp Trapp and would definitely buy another for a second child. It’s lovely to have Freddie right up to the table with us and it doesn’t look out of place (or get in the way) in our kitchen.

Mum’s essentials
Laura Mercier tinted moisturiser
I included this in my Christmas gift guide, but wanted to put here it as well because I cannot rave about it enough. I bought this for myself the first time I went shopping without Freddie and wandered into SpaceNK, and said that I was sick of looking like I hadn’t slept in a week (which was only partly true) and instantly fell in love. Nearly every time I wear it someone tells me I’m looking well and it takes 4 seconds to put it on. Buy some now.

Waterproof jacket
I have this one from Seasalt in a different pattern and, while not cheap, is fantastic. For most of the mums I know, getting out the house everyday is an absolute necessity and while you can plonk the rain cover over the pushchair, it’s just miserable getting wet yourself when you know you need to do another loop of the park. High fashion a proper rain mack is not, just plain sensible it is.

Plain stud earrings
I stopped wearing dangly earrings and cut my hair short when Freddie was about 3 months old and started grabbing both, but I hated not being able to wear any jewelry – I just didn’t feel like myself. Luckily my husband was listening to one of these rants and bought me some gorgeous simple gold bird studs (they’re flat to my ear, so even when Freddie spots them he can’t yank them out) and I wear them everyday.

Dad’s essentials
A big jumper
Although it is getting warmer, if can still be quite chilly at 5.30 am. If you’re lucky, like me, daddy will often get up with the baby and give them breakfast, while you can have an extra hour in bed and a jumper like this pulled over pjs is what I usually find Tom in when I come down for a cup of tea.

Roobios tea
When I asked Tom about his daily essentials since becoming a dad, this was the only thing he could think of. Rather than having a normal cup of tea before bed, he now has this vanilla caffeine free roobios tea so that he can get as much sleep as possible. (I also liked this when I had morning sickness as an alternative to ginger, by the way.)

So, tell me readers, what have I missed? What are your daily essentials for older babies? And, as toddler-dom gets closer every day, what do I need to get sorted for the next stage?

Love, Esme.

Find Esme on her blog Esme Wins or @Real_Married

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16 thoughts on “Family Lifestyle: Daily Essentials @12 months

  1. This is great Esme, particularly the sleeping bag and sock recommendations. At the minute we’re still at the stage where Max cn easily go through 3 sleepsuits a night and 2 outfits in the day so we travel with a lot of stuff!

    • Fee, these socks are unbelievable. Esme sent me some when I’d spent all. day. picking up Ellie’s socks that she’d wriggled off and they DO NOT BUDGE. They are truly magic.

      People also rate GAP baby socks but Ellie defeats then in about five seconds.

  2. Love our trip trap! Having then right up at the table is great for them joining in the social aspect of eating, and makes it easier to help them too.
    Also a big H and M fan. Their children’s range is a perfect cut for going over nappies, particularly if you use reusables.
    My son is 8m old and our current things we couldn’t do without are:
    Rucksack in place of a traditional nappy bag. So much easier to carry, and dad friendly.
    All in one, baby grow style water proof. Great if you have a baby/toddler carrier, or a baby who’s wanting to be out of the buggy and “walking” all the time. Ours is from hippychick.
    Stacking cups. The toy of the moment. You can put things inside them, build towers to destroy, take them in the bath, hide things under them. Limitless exploration.

  3. The next stage is really exciting, I found that after my little ‘un turned one he was able to play with a much wider range of toys. Our living room has been conquered by various plastic items including a farm, fire station, rollercoaster and several trucks!
    At the 6-12 month stage I stocked up on weaning equipment – soft weaning spoons from Tommee Tippee for the first tastes, then the less flexible ones as he got older. I introduced cutlery at 12 months but we still use spoons a lot. A bib with sleeves is an essential – Bibette do a great neoprene one but I have also seen good ones in Ikea. I also bought lots of ice cube tray things (little pots with lids) for freezing portions of home made food. Still use these now with an 18mo, they are also useful for giving you a good guide as to what a portion size should be.
    Teething got quite intense at this stage, I found Anbesol by far the most effective remedy. Also stock up on Calpol! You might need to experiment with different ways of administering it, at one point mine would only take it from a shot glass!

  4. Hey Esme, I’ll be heading out to buy my Freddie some of those H&M socks! He had his first shoes recently, but is not a fan and remains rooted to the floor when they’re on.
    I spend a lot of time wondering about silly things now he’s nearly one: ie. when to stop putting him in sleep suits and move on to proper pyjamas!
    Thanks for the mum recommendations too – I did a little post with more of these essenials, in the interest of sharing!

  5. Great post Esme. Love that you’ve included Dad’s too. My husband is also regularly found in his pj’s & a fleece.

    My memory is a little fuzzy but the things I wouldn’t have been without during 6-12 months were…..
    Waterproof all in one (thoroughly recommend JoJo Maman Bebe for these)
    Ergo baby carrier – I still use it now and she’s 18 months & a big girl.
    Stacking cups – Ikea do a great set which we literally took everywhere with us for many months.
    Dribble bandana bibs – Funky Giraffe are my favourite
    Splash About wetsuits
    Bibetta neoprene bibs for out and about and Baby bjorn sleeved apron and plastic pelican bib for at home.
    Colourful Tupperware – doubles up as a toy when your’re out and about.
    Books – the ‘That’s not my….’ range, Peepo, and anything with a peekaboo flap and/ or hidden mirror were winners for us.

    We have a Cossatto pretzel high chair, similar to the Tripp Trapp but also with fold over tray if you want to use it away from the table which I’ve found handy….particularly when we moved house! Although I do agree with the concept of having them at the table with you, even with the tray on, Connie was always sat at the same level as us and I didn’t feel she was left out so I don’t think it’s particularly necessary at a young age to have them right up to the table. I think our high chair and the Tripp Trapp will come into their own when they’re a little older and we can convert them to regular chairs. As we did baby led weaning, mealtimes were particularly messy and I found the tray useful to contain some of the mess. I actually wish we’d just bought the cheap white plastic Ikea high chair to begin with. Having used one whilst away, I can’t fault it and you can also remove the tray to have them at the table too. It’s a dream to wipe clean and for £20ish it’s a bargain.

    Most of these things are also still used regularly now so things don’t drastically change in the time immediately ahead.

    Oh, and I too have a Seasalt coat (Janelle) which I absolutely love. It’s warm, long & waterproof and has poppers at the waist so gives me some shape. So many people ask where I bought it. They sell out fast though so grab one as soon as Summer is drawing to an end.

  6. Do you know I’ve actually never even thought about H&M for baby clothes… this is a dangerous revelation as the girls are now into their 12-18 months stuff (about time given they’re almost 14 months)!

    Totally agree about the high chair, as I said above we have the Cossato version of the Tripp Trapp and it’s fab, I wouldn’t be without it.

    Thanks for the recommendation for the lightweight sleeping bags, as the days get longer I’m not looking forward to those hot nights again. Last year was a nightmare as it forced us to break the swaddling habit and that was HARD!

    Fab post as always lovely xx

  7. Great list but you forgot the number one essential for every one year old… RAISINS! My 13 month old doesn’t let me walk past the kitchen cupboard without crying out for them!
    And you’re spot on with the Seasalt coat and fleece for Daddy to throw on in the morning.
    I bought the Anya Hindmarch Baby Emergency Kit bag a few months ago. It’s expensive (I rang and ordered on from the Bicester outlet which made it a bit more reasonable) and I use it every day. It’s so liberating to pack away the nappy bag and be able to use my lovely handbags again and just carry the essentials for Eliza.
    Good luck with your baby bump Rebecca!

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