Baby registries are great for helping new parents fill their nurseries with lots of essentials they need, but new moms and dads need to relax, celebrate and adjust to their new roles in life! Next time you are shopping for new parents, consider going off the registry and purchasing one of these thoughtful, more personal gifts instead.
1. A Maternity Photo OR BIRTH DOCUMENTARY
Maternity photos are a wonderful way for expectant parents to commemorate the pregnancy or birth. Hire a birth photographer to document the birth — make sure he gets plenty of footage of everyone holding the newborn, too.
2. Newborn Photo Session
The cost of newborn photos can add up quickly. A session with a professional photographer is a gift parents will remember forever, especially if you spring for a couple of the prints.
New parents are too busy before and after Baby arrives to get that session planned. Giving it as a gift helps insure they don’t put off scheduling until those tiny moments are gone.
3. A Maternity Massage
Pamper your friends with the gift of a massage to relax their tired muscles, aches and pains after the baby arrives. You can even plan a his-and-her session (and make a plan for the newborn to be cared for during the session).
4. A Pre-delivery Pedicure
Few moms can reach their toes during those final months of pregnancy, so why not give her a gift certificate to get her nails prepped and polished before delivery? Better yet, schedule the appointment and go along with her for a pre-baby girls’ day out.
5. Prenatal (or Postnatal) Yoga Classes
Studies suggest that yoga can improve sleep, decrease anxiety and help moms prepare for (and recover from) labor and delivery. Many yoga studios offer classes specifically for mamas; it’s easy to buy a punch card your friend can use whenever she likes.
6. Nashville Parent subscription
Connecting to the area is important to new parents — especially once they have a family. A subscription to Nashville Parent is free! Find out about how to subscribe for your friends by going to nashvilleparent.com’s home page.
7. A Bath Basket
Fill a basket with an assortment of luxurious bath salts and bubble bath so Mom and Dad can both soak away stress. Include cocoa butter massage cream, which can minimize stretch marks (her).
8. A Breast-feeding Basket
If you know the couple is breastfeeding, fill a basket with items to make the experience easier. Nursing pads, purified lanolin nipple ointment, a comfy nursing tank top, a bestselling book, a bit of chocolate, and a his-and-her feeding schedule (maybe?!)
9. A Coffee Shop Gift Card
New parents are notoriously sleep-deprived, so … if they aren’t coffee drinkers or prefer to avoid caffeine, opt for a selection of their favorite herbal teas instead.
10. A Cleaning Service
Even if you can only afford a month or two, new parents will appreciate having somebody else take responsibility for the dusting and vacuuming while they adjust to life with an infant.
11. A Service Coupon Book
What do new parents need most in those first few weeks after giving birth? HELP! Create a book filled with coupons that they can redeem for personal services like grocery shopping, running errands and holding the baby while mom or dad showers.
12. A Postpartum Doula
The word doula literally means “woman’s servant.” While some doulas serve women during labor, a postpartum doula focuses on the mother’s physical and emotional needs after delivery and even home care so dads benefit as well. Postpartum support is one of the best gifts you can receive.
13. A Meal Train delivery
It’s easy — and free — to set up an interactive, online meal calendar at mealtrain.com, but it’s also a perfect gift for hungry new parents. Invite friends and family to participate so that after Baby’s birth the new parents receive delicious meals delivered right to their doorstep.
14. A High-Quality Baby Carrier
Baby carriers have gained popularity in recent years, but not all brands are created equal. Give the new family the gift of a high-quality carrier so they can carry Baby hands-free, feeling comfortable and safe while doing so.
15. A Bottle of Champagne
After Baby arrives, a bottle of bubbly is a festive gift for the new mom and dad (breastfeeding moms, prepare to pump and dump!) Toast to the baby … and of course, to good friends … like you!