Gifts to Bring to the Hospital for New Parents

close up of a caucasin newborn in its mothers arm
Gift cards for photo processing will help new parents start their album collection. (Image: Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Help a special new Mom and Dad celebrate the birth of their new bundle of joy by surprising them at the hospital with a thoughtful and useful gift. Since the new parents likely already have many of the ordinary supplies they'll need for the first few months, you can give them a gift that will help to provide them with a little more time to focus on their new family and relax during their few moments alone.

Fun Takes on Bouquets and Cakes

Flowers and desserts are nice, but they don’t really help new parents feel prepared for life with their new bundle of joy. So, instead of buying a real cake, try creating a diaper cake with newborn (or size 1) diapers, rubber bands, ribbon and a cake base (cardboard will do in a pinch). This whimsical gift will make new parents smile and will also come in handy during the first few weeks of their child’s life. Along these same lines, you can replace the generic flower bunch with a dazzling baby sock or baby washcloth bouquet. To make it, buy a silk flower arrangement, remove the flowers, and replace them with rolled up baby socks. The greenery in the bouquet will give the socks a fresh, spring feel to liven up the hospital room. Alternatively, use floral wire for the stems and wrap the bouquet in a receiving blanket instead of floral wrapping paper.

Coupon Booklets

New parents have a way of attracting advice; friends, relatives and even strangers all want to add their two cents. You can stand out from the crowd by turning your advice into a creative gift idea. Instead of recommending things to do, places to go or items to buy, you can create a coupon booklet that will give the new parents some much-needed help. Examples include coupons for homemade dinners, a night of babysitting, an afternoon of housecleaning, an uninterrupted shower or nap, a free phone call to vent or even a breakfast in bed. If you’re an experienced parent, include coupons for a diapering lesson, a baby car seat installation tutorial or an afternoon of help putting together nursery furniture.

Gift Cards

Sometimes, the best way to help relieve a little stress for new parents is to help them cope with the barrage of expenses they’ve only just begun to face or let them indulge a little for themselves -- guilt-free. Gift cards can go a long way toward accomplishing these goals. To help with practical expenses, surprise the new parents with a gift card for baby supplies, groceries, housekeeping services or dinner from a take-out restaurant. For nervous new parents, a certificate to a salon or spa can alleviate tons of stress -- a coupon for a babysitter will come in handy, too, so the new parents can get out to the spa. Other ideas that will help to lighten their load or relax a little include gift cards for laundry services, movie rentals, new baby photography services or even an in-house massage.

New Parent Survival Baskets

Make the first few weeks of parenting just a little easier for new parents by making them a survival basket. You can include healthy snacks so Mom and Dad can keep their energy up, DVDs for sleepless nights and shower gels (as a helpful reminder to bathe). Other survival kit ideas include stain remover, comfortable slippers and a few sets of batteries for all the new baby equipment. Help guide the new parents' memento saving by including a blank scrapbook, a hand and foot plaster kit, parenting books with the most helpful pages bookmarked, a journal monogrammed with the baby’s initials and a newspaper of the day of the baby’s birth for a keepsake.

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