How To Find the Perfect Gift For Your New Parent Friends And Family

Becoming a parent is something that many (although not all) people choose to do as they make their way through adulthood. Even if you're not there yet, or never will be, there can come a point in your life when many of your friends and relatives are becoming parents for the first time (and then often the second or third). It's always a joyful event when a new child comes into the world and it should be celebrated. Celebrations almost always mean gifts, and there are plenty of gifts you can give new parents for themselves or for their babies. In fact, there are so many options that it can be hard to know just what to get.

Before you buy a gift for a new parent or their baby, it's a good idea to do some research and carefully consider what you should get. They're sure to be receiving gifts from many people so you want to give them something that is both unique and practical.There are a few factors you might want to take into account if you want to choose something that they're really going to appreciate and actually put to good use. 

How To Find the Perfect Gift For Your New Parent Friends And Family, Baby Gifts, Gifts for Expectant Parents

Speak To The Parents
First of all, you might want to start by speaking to the parents and finding what sort of gifts they would like. Doing this can sometimes feel like it takes the magic out of gift giving, but it's also much better than getting them something they don't want or need. Some parents might have a baby registry, which you can use to see what they need. Even if you don't end up buying something from their registry, it can give you ideas about what they're looking for. The parents can also inform you on how they want to raise their baby, what to look for or avoid, and what they haven't received yet.

Learn About Baby Needs
It's definitely useful to have at least a basic understanding of babies and what they need before purchasing a gift. If you're a parent yourself, you work with babies, or you just have a lot of experience with them, you already have some idea. But if babies completely baffle you, don't worry. You don't need to become an expert, although it does help to have some knowledge of what new parents might need for their little ones.

One of the most important things to consider is safety. Any gift you get needs to be safe for the baby. Of course, it might be a gift that's intended for use in a few months' time, in which case it needs to be appropriate for the age they will be then. Safety is one of the reasons it can be helpful to speak to the parents about the gifts they're looking for. Maybe they're intending to use sleep sacks to allow their baby to sleep safely at night. Getting one or two of them in different sizes for the baby to grow into could be a good gift. You might want to buy or put some money toward an important item for safety, whether it's a car seat, a stroller, or a bassinet. It's important to be in communication with the parents if you're thinking about this kind of gift.

Learning about the basic items that babies need is a good start as well. Newborn babies don't typically need that much stuff, but what they do need, they need a lot of. For example, they don't need many different types of clothing, but they will require enough of the same items so that they can be changed regularly. So it might be a smart idea to focus on buying something like multiple onesies in different colors. Even just giving the absolute basics such as diapers can make a good gift, especially if you present it nicely.

How To Find the Perfect Gift For Your New Parent Friends And Family, Baby Gifts, Gifts for Expectant Parents
Photo by Spencer Selover via Pexels

Expectant parents will likely receive many gifts for their newborn. But newborns don't stay that small for long. They will soon be getting bigger, learning to move around, and eventually walking and talking. So if you're trying to think of the right gift, it can be a good idea to get something that can be used in the next few months and perhaps up to the baby's first birthday (when it will be time to get another gift). For example, if you're buying clothes, why not get something for the 3-6-month age range or a little older so that the baby has something to grow into?

Toys can be suitable gifts to consider in this category too. Newborns won't start playing with toys right away, but they will soon start to take interest. You can be one of the first people to make sure they have something to play with, or maybe something to cuddle. There are lots of toys that are designed for developing babies, including those that stimulate their senses or help to develop specific skills. If you want to get some good toys, try exploring how different options can meet a baby's needs at different ages. Just be careful not to get too many things that can't be used right away. The parents might not want to accumulate too much stuff that isn't currently of any use to them.

Give A Gift For Milestones And Memories
Marking a baby's first moments is special for many parents. It gives them a way to track their baby's growth and development, and they have something to look back on when their baby is older too. There are a few gifts that could fall into this category. You could get them a baby book designed for recording milestones, which can be good both for making memories and for tracking their baby's health. Another idea might be to get them a gift voucher for a baby photoshoot. Whenever they have the time and energy to do it, they might like to get some professional photos that they can treasure forever.

There are plenty of ways to record milestones that can make nice gifts. Books are one of the simplest options, and there are lots of choices with marked pages ready to be filled out. You can also find beautifully designed cards, blankets or mats (which are great for taking photos), calendars, and measuring charts.

Focus on Cleanup
There's no hiding it—babies are messy. The first few months of their lives are largely consist of keeping them clean and cleaning up after them. The good news is, this can inspire your gifts when you're looking for something to give new parents. There are all kinds of items that are perfect for keeping the baby, parents, and their home clean. A set of bibs is an easy one to start with. They're not just useful when babies start to eat solids. They're also great for keeping milk and drool from ending up everywhere. Something to wipe down the baby or clean up any spills can be useful too. This could include muslins or cloths that are always handy to have around. Helping new parents stock up on baby wipes is a good idea too.

Another gift idea you might consider is toiletries and bath items for the baby. This could include baby soap and shampoo, a baby bathtub, or a baby towel or gown. You can even consider useful grooming and medicine cabinet items, such as tools for keeping the baby's nails trimmed, a hairbrush, or various useful creams and ointments for dry skin, diaper rash, cradle cap, or other problems that could pop up.

Technically all baby gifts are for the parents, but some of them can really be for the parents instead of for the baby. While they're getting showered with baby things, they'll appreciate gifts that are intended for their own use too. You could consider a wide range of gifts for new parents, whether they're a nod toward their new hectic life or just something they would ordinarily enjoy.

How To Find the Perfect Gift For Your New Parent Friends And Family, Baby Gifts, Gifts for Expectant Parents
Photo by Lisa Fotios via Pexels

If you want to make their life as new parents easier, you might want to consider things that would save them some time. It's hard to find the time to do everything when you have a newborn and you're exhausted. So giving a gift that can help with that could be a smart idea. Your gift could be something like a voucher for food delivery or a cleaning service that the new parents can use whenever they want to. If you want to get a little more personal, you could offer these services yourself. Prepare some meals to bring by or offer to help do some cleaning so that they can focus on other things.

It might also just be a nice idea to give the new parents something they would enjoy. Whether it's a new coffee machine, fancy chocolates, a gift card for a streaming service, or something else to do, they'll love that you're also thinking about them and not just about the baby.

New parents will love most types of gifts, but give it some thought before you decide on a gift to be sure that it will be something that they will need and use.

This is a contributed post.

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