By Natasha Ramirez
If you have friends or family members in their 20s or 30s it’s very likely that some of them are new parents. While new parents probably already own the essential baby care items, there are lots of other gift ideas to get the new parents in your life. Instead of giving them yet another baby outfit or cheap toy, here are some thoughtful gift ideas to help out during this stressful but wonderful time of their lives.
Offer to Babysit
Child care can be expensive. When most families spend at least $10,000 per year on child care services like daycares and babysitting, it’s hard to budget for a night out. And even if they have the budget, it can be hard to let your little one go after being around them 24/7 in those early months. Give them the gift of time this year. Even if you only offer a few hours on the weekend for them to go on a date night, they’ll be grateful.
Lots of Caffeine
Parents with newborns or young children don’t get a lot of sleep. Unfortunately, there isn’t a way (yet) to inject caffeine right into our bloodstreams, but a gift centered around that helpful pick-me-up ingredient will still be greatly appreciated. If you don’t want to drop your money on a brand new Keurig, there are a lot of subscription boxes out there that deliver artisan coffee grounds or tea bags right to their door. If you know the mom is breastfeeding, look into safe alternatives to coffee that will also be safe for the child.
A Way To Preserve Memories
Children grow up way too fast. While everyone has a camera on their phones, those photos are just sitting there. Give them a way to take those photos off of their camera roll and somewhere they can admire them. Polaroids are popular again, and are an easy (and cute) way to display photos around the house. Digital picture frames can help display some of their favorite photos without having to print them off. And if you don’t mind asking them and spoiling the present beforehand, you could ask them what some of the favorite photos are and print them out for them.
A Safety System
A lot of new parents worry about their baby in the middle of the night and have heard troubling stories about SIDS. Give your new parents peace of mind for the holidays with a baby monitoring device. Sometimes, a simple video/audio monitor will do the trick. Other parents swear by more advanced technology like the monitors that also track their baby’s heart rate and oxygen levels. Check with the parents before going in on this gift to see what will help them relax during the night the most.
Easy Dinner Options
Even though a casserole is more a “sorry for your loss” gift, food is always appreciated. For new parents who don’t have time to shower (let alone cook a fine meal), helping out in the dinner department is a great gift. Whether it’s a recipe book full of simple and fast dinner options, a crock pot, or a service that drops groceries and meals right at their front door, anything to make meal time quick and delicious will be a stellar gift.
Story Time Options
Support your local bookstore while also helping your friends by giving them some children’s books this season. While it may be a couple years until the baby can read them, they’re still great for story time and getting kids to sleep. Reading to children while they’re young is a great way to instill a love for stories and books in them that will serve them throughout their lives.
At-Home Workout Service
New parents probably don’t have time to hit the gym anymore. But with a membership to an online workout service, they can still get a quick sesh in during naps, meal time, or when their partner is looking after the kid. There are lots of great websites and apps that offer vidoes and training plans they can do right at home. Whether they’re into yoga, barre, kickboxing, cycling, or another sport, they’re probably a training app for that. Combine the subscription gift with a nice yoga mat, reusable water bottle, or other small fitness-focused gift they could use while watching the videos.
When you have a newborn in the house, it’s hard to take time for yourself. Make destressing easy for them this holiday season with some self-care items. Face masks, nail polish, a fluffy robe, and some bath bombs are always fun gifts that can help them relax after a stressful day. Better yet, get them a gift card for a nice spa day at a spa nearby. It gets them out of the house and some much-needed “me time”.
Still lost? Go with diapers. They’re simple, cheap, and always appreciated.
About the Author
Natasha is an avid writer, reader, and dog-lover. Her work has carried her from the bustle of New York at Inc. Magazine to the Santa Fe deserts at Outside Magazine. Natasha currently works as a copywriter, guest blogger, and freelance journalist. When she’s not at her keyboard, Natasha loves spending her time outdoors hiking, rock climbing, and scuba diving.