Holigay Gift Guide 2016: New Parents of Human Babies

holigays-2016

So I’m a parent now and, as everyone said it would, it’s totally changed my life. My whole schedule now revolves around this tiny person who needs me for literally everything from feeding her face to cleaning her butt.

Holiday shopping with a newborn is a lot less “browsing stores for hours looking for the perfect gift” and a lot more “buying most everything online or shopping with a really specific list and plan.” On the flip, my in-laws want to know what I’d like for Christmas, but there’s not much I need right now other than a few consecutive hours of sleep and maybe some food that I don’t have to make.

New parents of tiny babies are a weird bunch because we’ve become social recluses out of necessity, spend hours each day speaking in baby talk, and have generally lost touch with the outside world. If you have a friend or relative who has a little one, you might be befuddled about what to get them. Diapers? Vodka? More baby clothes? I’ve got you. If anyone wants to buy me these things, I would not be opposed…

Hungry Parents of Hungry Babies

You know what you barely have time for once you’ve got a baby at home? Healthy meals. All our focus is on making sure the baby is eating well and we barely have time to cook for ourselves.

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  1. Take the pressure off of what to make for dinner with a gift subscription to HelloFresh and send all the ingredients for a healthy meal to their doorstep!
  2. Order healthy and yummy treats for the whole family with a Graze box gift subscription.
  3. Send something sweet to look forward to after the baby goes to bed, a Cookie Every Night subscription from Mouth.
  4. No tired parent has the time to hit the liquor store, so treat them to a Gold Medal Wine Club gift subscription.

Baby-Free Date Night

Want to win a new parent over for life? Offer to babysit so they can have a relaxing date night with their significant other or a night of quiet relaxation on their own.

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  1. Book a hotel room close to home with Hotels.com. That way, the parents can get some alone time and some solid sleep time, but still be close enough in case of an emergency (or if they decide they need to come check on the baby).
  2. Nothing like the best lesbian movie ever made, Carol, to set the mood…
  3. …and an edible wax candle that turns into massage oil for some solo or partnered relaxation.

Exhausted Parent Pampering

At the end of the day, we could just use some extra comfort. That’s all.

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  1. Every second of sleep counts with a baby who doesn’t sleep through the night. Help a new parent make the most of every moment in their bed with these super warm, super comfy, super sleep-inducing fleece sheets.
  2. A portable heated back massager will help release the tension at work, at home, or wherever and whenever a free fifteen minutes presents itself.
  3. I guarantee you new parents don’t have time or resources to buy fancy, yummy bath products, so treat them to a relaxing sensory experience with this coconut body scrup from the Body Shop. The next time they find a hot minute to take a shower, they’ll thank you!
  4. This is the perfect adult coloring book to blow off some steam after a long day soothing a fussy baby.

Baby Stuff, Duh

We all know what you really want is to spoil our baby with gifts. FINE. At least make it something useful!

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  1. When I was pregnant, one of my friends who has a kid told me to get lots of zip-up sleep’n’plays. We only half-listened. Now, we understand. Zip-up footie sleepers are essential and every parent who has already received way too many gifts of clothing will still appreciate a zip-up sleep’n’play. This cute dinosaur sleeper with dino feet is adorable.
  2. The VTech Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker is the perfect educational toy to grow with a kiddo from infant to toddler.
  3. The Bright Starts Around We Go 3-in-1 Activity Center Zippity Zoo is great for a tired parent with an active baby. It lets mobile little feet run around safely and converts to a toddler table when they’re older.
  4. File this one under weird stuff I didn’t think we’d use, but we can’t live without. The Bath Luve washcloth keeps a newborn baby warm while getting a bath. You could just use a washcloth, but it wouldn’t be as cute nor would it cover their little bodies so perfectly.

KaeLyn is a 35-year-old (femme)nist activist, word nerd, and queer mama. You can typically find her binge-watching TV, over-caffeinating herself, standing somewhere with a mic or a sign in her hand, eating carbs, or just generally doing too many things at once. She lives in Rochester, NY with her spouse, a baby T. rex, a xenophobic cat, and a rascally rabbit. You can buy her debut book, Girls Resist! A Guide to Activism, Leadership, and Starting a Revolution if you want to, if you feel like it, if that's a thing that interests you or whatever.

KaeLyn has written 201 articles for us.

11 Comments

    • HA! Well, you know, I kind of hate the lesbian romance genre, but that’s me personally. Carol was the first lesbian film I could think of that isn’t super cheesy, is not a youth-oriented film, and also where no one dies.

      But, like, I see your point! Maybe it will make new parents just hug their kids closer?

      Or I guess ya’ll could watch Elena Undone (my spouse’s favorite romance movie–barf) or Better than Chocolate. As much as I am a jerk about bad romance, I do own both of those films, so…

      • After all of the hype about Carol on Autostraddle, I was really underwhelmed by the time I actually saw the movie. I was expecting it to be this great romance, not a drama about how a woman was battling custody of her child because she is a lesbian! I had thought the film had a woman-centric, men-have-no-power plot, and instead a large portion of the plot is very man-centric with Carol’s ex-husband exerting an extreme amount of power over her life, and Carol not triumphing in the end. I did enjoy the movie and thought it was good, but I was expecting it to be better.

    • OMG LUCY

      I thought I was the only one who went in to watching Carol thinking on Heather’s (still love you Heather) recommendation that it finally be a love story with a happy ending, only to read a tragedy about a little girl whose mother put a lover’s interests above her own (in difficult circumstances). Although the fact that she must make this choice is a total bummer, I felt like Carol essentially chose Therese over Rindy, and I had a lot of trouble seeing Carol as sympathetic after that – because even as a queer person, if a parent did that to me, it would take a LOT of therapy to move past it.

      • And yes, I know that it’s problematic that once women become mothers our society views them as mothers foremost and essentially owned by their children, and yes, it was horrible that she was forced to choose, and yes, there is something to be said for living your authentic life. But if I had to choose between a partner and my child, I would hope I would choose my child every time. That’s kind of what you get into when you have a child, isn’t it? (Feel free to discuss).

        • in the book i definitely got the impression that carol felt saddled with rindy. she has no idea what gift her child would want for christmas, and she kind of has an “oh well” attitude about rindy not being around. i read her as someone who has love for this child of hers, but who also would not have chosen to have children at all if it had been up to her. my least fave part of the movie is the speech she gives about rindy’s well being. seemed ooc. i liked that she was more into freedom than motherhood and was still portrayed in a positive light.

  1. Thank you!

    I think my kid is a week or two older than Remy and my birthday is also in December. I hate being difficult but when people ask it’s hard because I’ve barely thought about myself since mid august and before that it was 90% baby.

    I think I’ll be getting clothes this year, or at least vouchers for clothes. If one of the babies parents gave birth in the last year there is a good chance a lot of their clothes don’t fit them anymore. All my prepregnancy clothes are too small and all my pregnant clothes are too big.

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