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This post has all my best gift ideas for someone who is having their second baby (or third or fourth!!) We had 4 kids in 5 years, so I can really vouch for what the best gifts are as a second-time mom. Or a third time mom, or a fourth time mom for that matter.
When my best friend gifted me a massage and a door dash gift card for guilt free takeout, I could have cried tears of joy. Heck, I probably did. (Those postpartum hormones are something else!)
There’s always an adjustment period when adding a new baby to your family, so it’s wonderful to be able to give a great gift to a family who is bringing home a new little one.
Here are my best gift ideas for second time moms & dads. They’re broken into a few different categories:
- Gifts for the older sibling
- Practical gifts for second time parents
- Basic baby gear for a baby who is much younger than older siblings
- Baby sprinkle gift ideas that are fun for second parents no matter the situation
- Super thoughtful gifts
- What not to get
For the Older Sibling
It’s always nice if you can throw in a little something for the first child. This gift sort of depends on the child’s age, but my favorite gifts for the older sibling are books, a small toy, or new art supplies (age appropriate) with a notebook or coloring book.
It’s so sweet to get a gift for the first child when the second child is born. Anything that can occupy the older child/ older children is a win.
1. Toy for Older Sibling
If you want to gift toys, we love open-ended toys that last a long time through many ages of young children. My go-to toy gift are these exact magnetic tiles. We own several sets and have given several sets over the years. (I’ve seen kids ages 1-12 enjoy them!) If you want to go above and beyond, get a large, sturdy rope bin for them to be stored in too.
2. Books for Older Sibling
I think the best books to give are series/ collections because they last longer. The books below are all books we own & have read many, many times over.
- Folk Tales Treasury
- Elephant and Piggie Collections Volumes One, Two, Three, Four, Five
- Narwhal & Jelly Series – there are 6 so far.
- Once there was a boy – gift set of 3. These are so dang cute!
- This is the best Hans Christian Andersen illustrated fairy tales collection. (My kids ages 3-9 all love listening to these.)
- Anything by Chris Van Dusen! The Circus Ship & the “If I Build A _______” books are my kids’ favorites of his.
- For older kids, try an illustrated Harry Potter book or a box set of Roald Dahl books.
3. An Outing for the Older Sibling
If you’re close enough to the family, it’d be so fun to offer to take the big brother or big sister out on a special outing. This gives Mom some time to shower while the newborn sleeps (hopefully), and helps the oldest child feel loved. I know I always feel grateful.
Practical Gifts for Second-Time Parents
The not-so-new parents already have a lot of the baby basics from the first baby, but there are still a few things you need with baby number 2.
When people ask me, “Do you get gifts for the second baby?” I’m always thinking, YES!!!! 100%. If the second-time moms are having a baby that’s the same gender, they probably don’t need more onesies, 3 month zipper pajamas, or crib sheets. BUT there are still so many great “sprinkle gifts” you can get for second babies (whether or not someone is actually throwing a second baby shower).
4. Gift Basket
A gift basket of baby essentials is a great idea…. think things that are consumable. I like to set up the gift in a cute basket that can be reused too.
- Diaper rash cream (this stuff is the best ever… non toxic, smells amazing, can be used anywhere on baby’s skin.
- Newborn diapers, size 1 diapers & wipes (unless the momma uses cloth diapers)
- A second white noise machine (we used these in both the baby & the toddler’s rooms so we liked having more than 1).
- Breast milk storage bags
5. Best Out and About Stroller
This super lightweight portable stroller was a life-saver with my 2nd baby, third baby & fourth baby.
I seriously love the Snap & Go Stroller for a second time mom. It folds up easily, clicks in with any carseat, has a huge basket underneath, and it’s easy to push. It’s awesome for those first few months when baby always falls asleep in the car.
A nice bigger ticket item is a double stroller… this can be a nice thing for a group of people to gift the new mom. Most new moms will have a strong preference about which double stroller they want, but a great option would be to pool cash & give a group card with cash in it. You could print the picture below and fold it up in the card and say something like, “We wanted to get you a double stroller, but figured you’d want to pick out your own! Hope this gift helps you get one that’ll be great for your growing family.” A gift certificate to Target or Amazon would work for a double stroller gift as well.
You could also encourage the parents to make a small baby registry. Amazon Prime makes the baby registry thing so easy now. There is also Babylist, which allows you to compile a registry from lots of websites, including individual small business websites.
6. Give the Gift of Nighttime Sleep!!
Depending on how well you know the parent, you might gift her my ebook. It’s the shortest & sweetest infant sleep book you’ll find. And it’s the exact, gentle process we used to help all 4 of our kiddos sleep 10-12 hours through the night by ages 12-16 weeks. Doesn’t get more practical than that! You can just buy it and forward her the email.
Basic Baby Gear
This sort of depends on how old the closest-in-age previous child is. If the next oldest child is pretty close in age, the parents probably don’t much in the way of baby gear.
But, if there is a big age gap, or if the new baby is a complete surprise, then the parents might need a lot of the baby basics such as a baby carrier / infant car seat system. If you think they need some basic baby gear, they should probably create a registry based on what they want!
I also think it’d be totally appropriate to encourage the family to include things for the older kids on the registry. For example, if the parents don’t need a crib, but they do need a toddler bed, it might make sense to put that on the wishlist.
I’m pretty minimalist when it comes to baby stuff, but my absolute favorite & most important baby necessities that would be great gifts for second time parents are:
7. Backpack style diaper bag
These things are cute & practical now, especially compared to when I was first having babies. Backpacks are great for easy access & being hands free. After all, the new mom needs both hands to hold the infant car seat in one hand and the older brother’s little hands in the other.
8. This amazing lotion/ balm/ ointment
I love this baby balm. I almost always grab one of these to throw in with a baby gift & the moms always text me when they start using it and say something to the effect of, “Oh my gosh! This lotion is amazing.” Ha! It sounds silly, but it’s such a fun little gift.
It’s non toxic & works all over baby’s skin. It’s great for dry skin or a basic diaper rash.
9. Swaddle wraps with velcro
I swear by velcro swaddles. And so does almost every mom I know. People have their preferences on brands but the top 2 are SwaddleMe & Halo. We always used SwaddleMe ones as they’re relatively inexpensive, the velcro lasted a long time, and they’re a great weight. They worked for summer or winter babies.
They get pretty worn out & stained with each baby since those newborns poop a lot (wink), so a fresh new pack of these is a great second time parent gift.
10. Ergo carrier
I wasn’t a huge baby wearer, but when I needed or wanted to wear the baby, this thing was amazing. If the baby was having a fussy day, or wanted to nap on mom, I loved my Ergo carrier.
When I had 3 kids 3 and under, we had a pretty long walk to our neighborhood park. Once the 1.5 and 3 year old kiddos pooped out, I’d let them ride in the stroller and I wore the baby in the Ergo. Who needs a gym membership when you can walk 3 kids under 4 to the park!?
Sprinkle Gifts for Second Baby
11. Host a Baby Sprinkle
Even though the parents may have a lot of the baby essentials, there are still some great second baby gifts people can give. Plus, a sprinkle is about more than buying baby items. It’s about recognizing that this newest addition is a blessing & celebrating new life with the expecting parents. You can incorporate an encouraging notes journal or some fun games.
The more kids we had, the more grateful I was for people who would treat our big family positively rather than making negative sarcastic comments… a second baby shower is a great way to say, “we love your family & we’re excited for you to add younger siblings to this family!” If the new little brother or little girl is close in age, and the family does not need baby gear basics, here are some things I think would be awesome gifts.
12. Baby Clothes
Baby clothes are so fun to pick out, and they are super fun to receive too. I generally don’t give very much in the way of clothes unless the baby is a different gender or their two children of the same gender were born in complete different seasons. You can also throw in one cute outfit with the rest of your gift depending on the budget.
13. Cute Basket for Diaper Changes
Once we had more than one child, we hardly ever used a diaper changing table. Rather, we had a cute basket in the main family room area and we had a changing pad or towel in it that we could lay the baby on. Plus diapers, wipes, this amazing cream I mentioned earlier, and a couple changes of clothes. Putting together a diaper station gift basket like this would be super cute & useful in the early days especially, when you’re changing diapers 24/ 7.
Okay if you’re not super crafty, you can just literally order this pre-stocked basket on Amazon. Of course you can! LOL how amazing is that?!
Here is a great diaper basket tutorial if you want to go the DIY route.
14. Freezer Meals!
If you have time or want to coordinate with friends on a group gift, putting together a handful of easy freezer meals would be a wonderful gift for a second-time mom. (Or a first-time mom for that matter!)
15. House Cleaning
Honestly, if I could gift every expecting mom friend of mine a one-time house cleaner, I would. Adjusting to a second baby can feel very overwhelming, so a gift card or cash to get the house cleaned would be a huge help to a new mom, especially if she doesn’t already have regular house cleaners.
I would recommend doing a little research locally and just finding someone to hire. You could tell the new momma in advance that you’re going to schedule it for her and ask a day that works with her schedule. I seriously think house cleaning is the perfect gift for the entire family. But, it’s also quite pricy, so it may not be an affordable option.
Super Thoughtful Gifts
16. Gift card for making a baby book
The busy new second time mom might not get around to making that baby book until the second baby is 3 or 4 years old, but hey, when she does, she’ll be glad to make it for free. I’ve used mixbook a bunch over the years and am always pretty happy with the styles, cost, and quality.
The prices on all the photo book making sites are a tad misleading because each book starts with like 10-15 pages, and that’s the price listed. So if you want to add more pages, you pay quite a bit extra. As a rule of thumb, if you can afford it, give a card that’s double the basic baby book price. That’d cover a good sized baby book!
I love Mixbook & have used it for years to create all kinds of family albums.
17. A new baby book that is more the handwritten style
Another option is to gift a more handwritten style baby book. I actually love these. I used one with a couple kids! I ended up making each kid their own digital baby book, but it was much easier to make it when I had all the little milestones and notes written out in these books.
I love the Lucy Darling Brand Baby Books! (Browse the whole Lucy Darling Store here.)
18. Subscription to this cool memory making thing
This type of service didn’t exist when we were having babies but I love the idea. You fill out the baby’s birth day, and the app reminds you when to add milestone notes and pictures. When baby turns one, they mail you an amazing little baby book. This seems especially appealing for parents with more than one child because their days are so full!
19. Date Night Gift Card
Bonus points if you include cash for babysitting or offer to babysit for free. Quality time is hard to come by when you’re brand new second time parents, so a date night gift card or date night gift basket would be such a thoughtful gift.
You could even go all out on this one and go in on it with multiple friends to give them a higher price point gift card & extra babysitting money.
What Not to Get
As much as I want to give lots of great suggestions for what to get for the second baby, it’s also helpful to know what not to get. After all, those first time parents probably already have a pleathora of stuffed animals and plastic bottles, unless you know they already got rid of all their baby basics. (In which case you should shop my 50 most important baby registry items list!)
20. Baby blankets
You just end up with so many of these over the years. Unless you are making a beautifully handmade heirloom baby or the mom has specifically requested a type of blanket, I’d skip the baby blanket and give one of the other 17 ideas.
21. Stuffed animal
Again, over the years, you end up with more stuffed animals than you can count. Plus parents don’t typically put stuffed animals in cribs anymore anyway. An expecting parent doesn’t need a teddy bear. They need gift cards to Door Dash. Ha!
If you absolutely have to give a stuffed animal, we’ve received a few classic children’s books that came with stuffed animals over the years and those were pretty dang cute.
22. Burp cloths
By the time you have a second child, you just use those cheap old school white ones, the nearest kitchen towel, or your own shirt. Ha! New burp cloths are definitely not a necessity.
23. Play Gym
This is a standard first baby shower gift. It’s very, very likely that the momma-to-be already owns one of these (unless she already got rid of it).
24. Baby Toys
Little rattles and shakers are super common first time baby gifts, so Mom probably already has a few of these around. Plus second time moms realize that the baby would rather eat her own hands or a spatula than a toy designed for babies to eat. Haha babies are so impractical.
Last Thing (But Not Least)
It may sound cheesy but the number one thing new parents need (no matter how many kids they have) is support. We all know this is true with first babies. But it’s the same for new parents whether they have a second daughter or second son. Whether you’re a family member, neighbor or friend, dropping off a special gift to a busy mom with a new baby (and an older child!!) is such a welcome kindness. Here are some ideas:
- A friendly encouraging text message – with no expectation that they will respond to you in a timely manner.
- An offer to come hold the baby & play with the other kids while Mom and Dad shower or nap or go out for an hour.
- Asking if there is anything tangible you can help with this week
- Offering to take the older kids to a nearby playground
- A hot meal or a Door dash gift card
Adjusting to a new baby is a big transition for every family, but a beautiful one. Any supportive gesture or gift will help the new parents to feel loved & cared for.
If you want to browse more baby gift ideas, check out my complete registry list here.
And don’t forget to forward the momma who is on her second pregnancy (or 3rd or 4th) this post that is really about surviving those early years with multiple little ones.