An infant car seat definitely falls under the category of "obvious." However, having a car seat isn't enough; it has to be properly installed and also meet current standards. The latest car seat regulations, reviews and testing, car seat clinic information and FAQs can be found at Transport Canada. The Ministry of Transportation also provides a simple yet detailed explanation of the requirements associated with rear-facing infant car seats.
Naturally you'll need T-shirts, onesies and an outfit for your newborn to wear home, but pack something appropriate for baby's first photo op too! A photographer is usually on hand at the hospital to take a photo for baby announcements, so you'll want them to look their best — perhaps a little dress and one of those cute headbands with a bow for a baby girl or a smart outfit for a little boy. So cute!
Of course you're going to want to cover and protect those adorable, tiny toes with socks or booties, but first-time moms may not realize it's also smart to have something to cover their equally cute little fingers. Why? Baby's face may need protection from their impressively sharp fingernails if they're getting their hands up around their cheeks and nose. An extra pair of newborn socks or hand covers made especially for this purpose will do the trick.
Baby won't be ready for a fedora or cowboy hat just yet, but have a basic cap to cover his or her head. The hospital will likely provide one during your stay, but you may want to use your own and/or bring one for the trip home. Light cotton head coverings or little bonnets are available for warm weather, and knitted caps can be found for colder weather.
You've packed an outfit for baby to wear home, but if it's colder weather, you'll also need to have outerwear. Pack a little jacket or even a full snowsuit for the trip home; baby cannot be properly snapped into a car seat if he or she is swaddled in blankets. However, extra blankets may be desired in particularly cold or windy conditions.
If you plan on allowing baby to use one, pack a pacifier and a pacifier clip for use at the hospital and on the ride home. It's also a good idea to purchase a window shade for the car window to keep hot, bright sun off baby. Moms, you may also want to pack breast pads and your own sanitary pads to make your stay at the hospital and your trip home more comfortable.
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