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The Best Baby Shower Gift – Fill A Tub With Mom Tested Baby Items That Every New Mom Really Needs

Shopping for baby shower gifts is always a treat.  If you are giving a baby shower gift try any of these 15 mom tested favorite baby products.  Give the mom-to-be things that she really needs for the new baby, even though she may not know what it is!

Before I had a baby of my own I loved going and picking adorable little newborn outfits, cute stuffed animals, and whirly light up toys for shower gifts.  After having my first child I quickly realized, while those things are super fun to buy and give, they are not what a new mom really needs!  I had duplicates of many things for my new addition when he arrived, and not a lot of the essentials.  Because of that, I started putting together gift baskets for new moms that included things that are not quite as fun to give, but that moms need to make those first few months of baby’s life a little easier.  When a group my friends found out that the last lady in the bunch was finally expecting her first baby we were thrilled to go shopping for the new addition.  Three of us in the group, together now have had 6 babies over the last 5 years.  Four baby boys and two baby girls later we have tried everything that they sell for baby.  I’m not saying we are experts, but our baby gifts are certainly baby tested and mommy approved.  We decided that we would go in on a gift together and so we headed for Target.  After deciding on a rough price limit we looked at the big ticket items, and decided we wanted to instead, pick up all of the things that we used and loved for our own babies.  We had a blast walking up and down the isles of target reminiscing about that past few years and the trials and tribulations when it came to baby products.  Through trial and error with our babies we found products that we loved, hated, and tolerated.  The gift that we ended up giving our dear friend was a collection of things that we used and LOVED for our own kids.  We were just grabbing and throwing things into the cart, ohhing and ahhing of the products that we could not live without.  It was a sad realization for me that I hadn’t shopped those isles in a while, but a good reminder of how much we were saving on diapers, formula, and baby food!

After we filled our cart to our hearts content we decided that,  instead of a gift bag or even a basket, we would “wrap” the gifts in an adorable plastic pink tub.  It was the perfect size to fit all of our goodies, and will make the perfect toy bin for all of babies new playthings!  I have these in my own home for toys, and the are awesome and indestructible.  It was only about $7, which is only a couple dollars more than a huge gift bag and far less than a decorative basket.  At home I painted a heart on the front of it using chalkboard paint so Mom and Dad can label baby’s bin.  It was a simple way to personalize the gift, and make it even more functional.

Here is a list of all of the things that we added to the tub for baby.  Our choices are simply based on what worked, and didn’t work for our own children and are, in our opinion, great gifts to give a new Mom.

1. Diapers – We all agreed that we loved Pamper’s Swaddlers for Newborns and the Target brand diapers for older babies.  We each bought a different size for the gift tub.  We considered that not all baby’s wear newborn sizes and didn’t buy all newborn diapers.   My daughter never even fit into  newborn sized diapers but my friends kids wore them no problem.

2. Non scented Target brand wipes – a favorite of all three of us moms with babies that had sensitive skin.

3.  A huge tub of Triple Paste – Desitin works great too.  Skip getting the small tubes – they will need the big one!

4.  Baby pain reliever and Gas relief drops – I will never forget the panic I felt after my son’s first round of shots when I got home and had nothing to give him when he spiked a fever!  Save that mom from that panicked feeling – make sure she is all stocked up on those things she will need so she doesn’t have to go get it while baby isn’t feeling well

5.  Instant ear thermometer – I so wish I would have had one of these when my kids were that little ( and now too).  Nothing is worse than torturing a sick baby with a slow thermometer, not to mention trying to get a decent temperature reading from a squiggly toddler that wants nothing to do with it when they are sick

6.  Sophie The Giraffe – The best teether out there.  An adorable teether that baby can actually hold onto and fit into her mouth when they have sore gums.

7.  Munchkin Twisty Teether Ball – Another great teether for soothing baby’s sore gums

8.  DIY Wipes Container Toy For Baby – I came up with this toy  for my kiddos after they wasted countless boxes of wipes playing with them.  They loved them so much!  Her kids are going to pull wipes out of the containers, why not make them their own version and save her some money on wasted wipes!

7.  Target brand baby shampoo – A mild tearless shampoo and body wash that was all of our favorites – especially for the price

8.  Target Brand Soothing Vapors Bath – A great option when baby has a cold

9.  Munchkin snack catcher Cups – We all had these for our kids.  I still use our cups daily – they wash and wear great!

10.  Munchkin dishwasher basket –   By far the easiest way to wash bottle nipples, and bottle components.  Who has time to was all that stuff by hand – snuggle that baby and run the dishwasher instead.

11.  Crib soother – We went for the Baby Einstein Neptune Crib soother because a couple of our kid’s couldn’t fall asleep without it.

12.  Taggies Blanket Toy – An adorable little toy that is baby approved – little tabs keep baby’s attention

13.  Books – We each picked a book that was one of our own Children’s favorite first books: Barnyard Dance, Pat the Bunny, and Good Morning, Good Night!

14.  Baby sign language book Collection:  By Linda Acredolo , Susan Goodwyn , Penny Gentieu – Both of my kids adored these books the entire first year of their lives and so did I.  My kids could communicate simple things with me before they could talk!

 14.  Headbands – We were lucky enough to know that the baby was a girl!  We got some cute headbands to save mom from answering the question:  “Is it a boy?”,  even though SHE is dressed in pink from head to toe!  The question is inevitable, but maybe the headbands will help with the number of times it is asked.
15.  Clothes, clothes, clothes –  It was the absolute best part of the shopping trip.  A stop at Carters to pick out those adorable, soft, and adorable pink outfits.  We pick clothes that were for mostly ages 6months and up.  I think I had a million newborn and 3 to 6 month outfits for my son from my shower, but once he grew out of those, I remember having nothing in the next size up.  We got outfits from 6 to 18 months to help keep baby clothed all year long.  Remember to think about what season it will be when buying clothes in different sizes, and that clothes aren’t always true to age depending on the brand.  We went for soft comfy fabrics, with nothing too restricting.  Lots of sleepers and onesie outfits without too many layers.  You know those stiff, frilly outfits are cute, but it won’t last long before it gets dirty and why not make it comfy- simple is better for new babies, and new mommies!  P.S.  Our husbands all loved the sleeper sacks because they hated buttoning the sleepers with kicking baby legs in it, but all of us Mom’s agreed that we did not prefer them.  We hated that babies feet always were cold and that they crept and bunched up at babies back.

We also decided that, instead of spending money on cards for the baby shower, we would each buy one of our children’s favorite books to get babies library started.

After I filled the tub with all of our baby gifts, I used some grosgrain ribbon in bright pink to attach chalkboard covered heart tags to each book. I wrote the name of which family choose the book in chalk on the heart in lieu of a card.   If you want to make these gift tags for yourself you can check out my step by step tutorial here.

We put all of the gifts together, tied it with a bow and were very happy to give our dear friends this gift for their baby shower.  We couldn’t be happier for them, and can’t wait to see the new baby use every last thing in that tub!  We are so happy to have pretested hundreds of baby products for them so that they don’t have to!


88 thoughts on “The Best Baby Shower Gift – Fill A Tub With Mom Tested Baby Items That Every New Mom Really Needs

  1. Where did you get the pink tub? If at target, do you remember which aisle?? Thanks!

    1. You can find similar tubs at Walmart and Target and Kmart (any place like it tends to have them around somewhere). I’ve seen them in the kids storage/bedding area of Target in the bright fun colors. In the tote areas of Walmart. If you ask for the round tubs with rope handles they should know what you are asking for. 🙂

    2. Target in the storage section. It was back to school times – so they had it in the collage bedding section, but I have seen them by the clothes hampers and also by the kids bedding section.

  2. Great favorite gifts to give & receive! I just had my 3rd baby:) I would add nail clipper, baby nail file combo and baby socks! I hate buying baby & kids socks, I just think for the $ they should be huge..haha! And it’s something easily skipped when shopping! The cute socks that look like ballet socks, sneakers & golf shoes etc are my favorite & it’s kind of a cute & practical gift!
    All the showers I do we have everyone bring a book to start babies library so I like that Orion of using it to add name instead if a card if this isn’t done. We get a laundry basket or plastic tub like you mentioned above for everyone to place them in.

  3. I LOVE the tub idea! We just got our first tub (in purple) for our toddler and I am a total convert. I am a diaper bag addict so I almost always got that and filled it with the essentials (wipes, aquaphor butt cream was best for my child, a lovie with a silky side and a soft side, a book, rattle, bottles/bibs/etc) What went in the bag always depended on the cost of the bag to make sure I stayed in budget but the tub will fix all that budget issue! <3

    1. Oh, and Hyland’s Teething Tablets (our magic pills) were the ONLY thing that worked on our daughter. Sadly I had a near lifetime supply of Orajel from gifts and it didn’t work once with her. *sigh*

  4. Thanks for this! It’s a lifesaver and I posted it to StuffDOT so I always know where to find this post. I don’t have kids so every time someone has a shower, I’m always clueless about what to bring.

  5. Loved this so much! My sister and I are hosting a baby shower for our sister-in-law and I just got home from Target. I made a combination of things she registered for and things you listed. Great idea! Thanks so much!

    1. So happy to hear that it was a helpful list for you! Hope your sister-in-law loves her gift, and I am sure she will REALLY appreciate after her little bundle of joy arrives! Thanks for the comment!

  6. I did something similar for a friends shower but I also added some stuff for mom after the baby, like tucks pads, regular pads, anti itch cream, ibuprofen, stool softner and preparation H wipes. I was nicely warned by a friend right before having my first baby about some of the after issues no one really talks a out and I found having these things already at home were very helpful.

  7. I like to give 2 lingere bags so the can hold newborn mittens and socks so they aren’t lost in the laundry. Also cloth diapers with diaper pins because the diapers can be used as burp rag or when they actual need to wear a cloth diaper. And for mom include cozy sock slippers and hair bands.

  8. Ihave used this type of gift ever since I had babies myself. Another nice adition is something for mom. A soothing bath gift, massage, or handy items for hospital trip. Like chapstick, lotion, mints, and tucks! The ideas are endless and you could spend a fortune but if you bought one or two items each trip to the store it wouldnt seem like near as much.

  9. Thanks so much for the list. I have been working on my registry for our little one coming in June and was able to add some of the essentials we will need from what you have listed. I would much rather have the things I know I will need right away than have lots of cute stuff but nothing practical. Thanks!

  10. I was on the receiving end of a gift like this. I’m a first time mom and hadn’t spent much time around babies before. I remember walking up and down those Target aisles when we were signing up for the registry, and I was clueless… What is that? Do we really need this? Which brand is best? A few of my more baby-enlightened friends went in together and purchased many of the things on your list as well as a few others (baby q-tips,a diaper caddy, a bottle brush, baby socks from The Gap – they actually stay on those little feet, etc). I remember opening every thing and my friends had to explain what it was for and why I needed it. It was the best gift, by far!

    1. It makes my heart sing to hear that you received, enjoyed, and really used a gift like this!! Very cool – you have fantastic friends 🙂

  11. After having 5 kiddos I too do something very similar. Also, I love to give everything needed to start feeding – bowels, spoons, forks, little snack containers, sippie cups and bigger bibs. Everyone gives tiny bibs and they never fit by the time you need them.

    1. Totally great ideas to add to the gift – I remember having to go out and buy those things with my kids as well! I will defanitly be adding those to my gifts from now on! Thanks

  12. Thanks for this list! My brother is going to be a dad, and there’s no shower, but I wanted to stock them up, so I used a bunch of this. I’m not a mom, so I only know what my friends use (and I do what you did–buy the fun stuff!) I don’t live nearby, so I went on Amazon and am sending it to my mom to assemble. Great list!

    1. Hope they love it!!!

  13. LOVE this idea!!! Also love the commenter that mentioned including Dreft. I disagree however on the ear thermometer. I’m a pediatric nurse & strongly believe you can’t get an accurate read with an ear thermometer in kids under 1. Plus, for fevers in babes less than 6 mo, you should ALWAYS take a rectal temp. For those who want an alternative I prefer behind the ear thermometers. They tend to be fairly accurate. 🙂 can’t wait to make a practical momma bucket for my next baby shower gift! Thanks for sharing!

  14. I have done a similar gift for my sisters, only I put all the swag in a Radio Flyer red wagon. I tried to give some things for each stage of the first year. Different items that I have added are Ella’s Kitchen baby food tubes, Aveno baby shampoo and lotion, and Aden and Anais Swaddling blankets. I love the idea of the Dreft and mesh bag will have to add that to my list!

  15. Love this list. I have 3 friends having babies this year and had no idea what to get them. Came across this on Pintrest and oh my gosh thank you my problem is solved 🙂

  16. Towels are another great filler with a baby bath tub….adding another person to the family totally warrants a soft, white towel, rubber ducky, J&J bath, etc.

  17. My friends & I are doing this thanks to your blog! Only, I’m making washcloth cupcakes & a ‘no longer pregnant” mom wine basket with chocolates 🙂

  18. I like to also give kid bandaids, my son needed a bandaid when he was just a couple months old and all I had was the regular sized – HUGE on his little foot.

  19. I think this is a fabulous idea. My little boy grew out of the clothes I got so fast that some of them never even got worn. I would add the Swaddle Me blanket. They are the most useful thing I had for his first few months. They are easy to use in the middle of the night when you don’t want to be trying to tuck and fold receiving blankets.

  20. As a pediatric nurse, I would suggest a regular digital thermometer rather than an ear thermometer for the first year. The ear canal of young babes is so small, the ear thermometers aren’t very accurate. A regular digital thermometer can be used either under the arm or rectally. There are also 2 very good ointments for diaper rash. Boudreaux Butt Paste or Dr. Smith’s diaper rash cream are excellent. Your list of items is very comprehensive and useful!

  21. I have done this before for a friend. She did her nursery in old time Winnie the Pooh. So we got a light blue tub and my daughter (who is an awesome artist) did the bees and butterflies to match the mural on the nursery wall. We also got the link a doodle links from fisher price and linked around the whole bin and then got the link a doodle toys and hooked to the link! It was filled with all the important things you need-quiet a few from your list and lots of fun stuff to decorate with Instead of ribbon and bows!! She now has a second baby and bin is still in the nursery Still being used!

  22. I do a similar thing for my friends having babies but I put everything in a plastic baby bath tub. I also include wash cloths and towels.

  23. I give things that I found useful with my daughter and in the card I write WHY I liked those items! Like a certain bar and of socks because they actually stayed on their feet.

    1. Fantastic idea! Thank you for sharing!

  24. Awesome idea. My family did this for my first little one in November and thank god they did. I have used every last item. Some other suggestions would be oxy clean free, shout color catcher sheets (who has time to seperate baby laundry by color), colic calm, for breast feeding mommas nursing pads and lanolin ointmeint (works great for dry chapped noses and lips)

    1. So happy you got so much use out of your gift – and those are GREAT additions!

  25. My one thing that I always give to new parents is a larger piggy bank. After it gets opened it gets passed around and everyone fills it up! One baby shower we ended up with almost $100 for that newborn!!

    1. That is a great idea! A pin is in order!

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