I thought I would put together a quick list of items that I found essential to surviving these first few weeks with our new baby girl. These are just my opinions and preferences. Let me know if you had a must have item that I might want to know about.
Boppy--I am breastfeeding Leah. And just like with the boys, I always use the boppy. It makes holding the baby to nurse so much easier. I get great use out of these pillows. I highly recommend them to Moms who plan to nurse.
Lansinoh Breast Pads--I used these with both boys for the entire duration of breastfeeding them (14.5 months and 17 months). I would not have survived without these, or at least my clothes wouldn't have survived. These are the best disposable breast pads I've tried. And yes, I buy them in bulk.
Swaddle Me--We learned quickly with our first child that most babies like to be swaddled up nice and tight when they are born. My kids liked being swaddled a lot. We found the Swaddle Me blankets with velcro were able to stay nice and tight. The only down fall to these is that weaning the kids from a swaddle can be difficult if they really enjoy being wrapped up.
Footed Sleepers--Even though Leah is a June/summer baby, she spent many days of the first few weeks in footed sleepers. In the air conditioned house they were a necessity. If they have zippered closures that is a bonus that makes late night diaper changes that much quicker.
Rock n play/bouncy seat--While I love holding my little baby girl, sometimes I need some hands free time. My sister sent us the Rock n Play. It's kind of like a cradle. It is not electronic, so you are responsible for rocking it, but everyone I know who has one really likes it. I put Leah in it during her morning sleepy period, and that way I can fold laundry (or blog ;) She looks so cozy in the Rock n Play. I sometimes wish I had an adult sized rock n play. We are also using the Rainforest bouncy seat that we had with the boys. It still works almost 5 years later. We find the bouncy is great during dinner time to keep baby girl happy while I eat.
Basics by Bravado at Target (Nursing Tank)--Every time I have a baby, I literally live in nursing tanks. I've tried quite a few. I have lots from target, which are comfy but not always the most flattering. I have one Bravado nursing tank from my time nursing Sean. Bravado ones fit really well and are the most supportive ones I've tried, but they do come at a price (almost $50). I knew I wanted nursing tanks this time around that looked cute. I was very intrigued when I found out that Bravado had made a line for Target (Basics by Bravado) that had a nursing tank (Felicity nursing cami). Looking at it in the store, it doesn't look like it will be as good as the regular Bravado tank, but it makes promises of lift, smoothing, and won't ride up so I wanted to try it. It really does fulfill those promises too! My biggest pet peeve with the other nursing tanks is when they ride up. After all, the reason I wear tanks is to cover my stomach. When I tried the first one I bought, I immediately went back out to target and bought two more. My store seems to be selling out, and from what I hear they may not restock them. I will say that they are not quite as good as the regular Bravado tanks, but they are definitely a good, less expensive alternative that is flattering. I'd say they are 97% as good and about half the price.
So there is my list of what I needed to survive the first few weeks with a new baby.