There are an abundance of babies in my life right now. Many of my friends and co-workers decided to have babies around the same time (wouldn’t it be funny if they had actually sat around and discussed it?)

Do you know what this means? It means I need to buy a whole lot of baby gifts! I decided to ask some new and new-ish moms about the best gifts they received when their children were born. Here’s a rundown of mom-approved gifts that are useful, unique, or just plain cute.

    When in doubt, go nerdy.


When in doubt, go nerdy.

Anna (mother of Oliver, age 18 months) says a box of hand-me-downs from a relative was invaluable. “Clothes that were several sizes up (6-9 month, 9-12 month, even 2T) were nice to get as gifts since kids grow so quickly and it’s great to not have to buy an entire 9-12 month wardrobe.” Emily (mother of Elena, age 1) says that the cutest gift she received was a pair of baby Tom’s shoes.

Anna and Tara (mother of Callum, age 3 months) agree that baby swings and bouncers make great gifts. Anna says her baby swing “was a lifesaver as it was the only thing Oliver would nap in for the first three months.” Tara says, “Callum is dozing off in his bouncer seat right now with a very satisfied smirk on his face.”

Anna loves her BOB stroller, which was a gift from her father-in-law. “It’s really expensive, but you can drive it anywhere and it is incredibly easy to fold up and put away. If we didn’t get it from Travis’s dad I would have asked a group of people to go in on it.” Tara likes the Snap ‘n Go Stroller because it’s lightweight and easy to transport.

Most useful
Sarah (mother of Jadyn, age 5) says that the most useful gift hands down was a baby diaper service. Emily points out that baby music has been great for calming and eating, and that a special sewn cover for breast feeding in public was also a useful gift. Tara says the Miracle Blanket was great when Callum was really little because it helped relax him to sleep.

Most unique
Tara bought Callum a unique Christmas gift: a personalized book that includes his name and his family members’ names. Sarah says her personal favorite was her tattoo. “It was a little late and I gave it to myself but it’s the best baby gift. A gift certificate to a tattoo parlor would be a great gift for a tattoo-inclined new parent.” She adds, “My mother-in-law gave me my husband’s baby blanket (which his grandmother had made), and that was also really special.”

Baby Gift No No’s
Emily suggests avoiding baby sleeping bags because baby sleeping habits are quite specific to each baby. She also advises staying away from baby journals because, while they’re great in theory, she has four of them and hasn’t been able to fill any of them out properly.