8 Christmas Gift Ideas For NICU Moms
We were lucky enough to not spend Christmas in the NICU (just all summer! I have never been to the NICU, so I’m not able to speak from firsthand experience. It can be difficult to imagine, either being away with your family in the hospital or being away with your baby with family outside the hospital. Either way, it is a no-win, guilt-ridden situation for any NICU mom.
No matter the season, there are many gifts that NICU parents would love to receive. My husband and I did not communicate much of what happened during our NICU stay with friends or family for the first half of it, and I only started writing a lot about our journey near the end and now that we’re at home.
If you are looking for ways to support a friend or relative who is in the NICU with their child/children right now, a small gift could go a long distance to cheering them up.
Being in the NICU is a bit like a time warp. It feels like time has stopped being outside the hospital. You have no idea of what is happening in the real world and don’t care to find out. It also feels like you are being left behind while everyone else is going on as normal.
It is hard to imagine Christmas being any harder.
This is it! These are my top 8 recommendations for gifts for the NICU parent in you life this holiday season… particularly the moms, but many of these ideas also work for NICU fathers.Check out the Gifts For Nicu Nurses list below now!
1. Starbucks/Coffee Shop gift cards
Image from Starbucks.com
Find out where the nearest coffee shop is and purchase gift cards. We moms in NICU are fueled by coffee, and the little coffee cart is where we get lunch if we don’t have anything.
If your friend is far away, this is also a great option as most stores let you email or text gift cards (Starbucks does right here or you can download their mobile app to send via phone).
2. Books and toys for children
Ask your friend’s NICU if toys and stuffed animals are permitted. They weren’t allowed in our hospital. There was nothing with fabric that could be contaminated by germs. This is aside from clothes, which were the responsibility of the parents.
Books are always a good option. Sometimes, NICU moms are limited to just sitting beside their baby and talking to them. Sometimes, touching them is forbidden for several weeks or months.
Get a few books for your friend to read to their baby. This will help you build a bond with them, even if they aren’t able to hold or touch them.
Some personal favourites of mine are The Gruffalo (gifted from a friend and it’s the BEST! The Velveteen Rabbit, and the classic I’ll Love You Forever.
3. Big Ass Sweatpants
You will be a blessing to your friend who just gave birth. If you aren’t sure what your friend’s measurements are, don’t be afraid of going for a large size with a drawstring waist.
I recommend Old Navy for cheap ones that are comfy, like these French terry joggers!
4. A nice pen and journal
Every day I was in the NICU, I kept a page of notes. Sometimes I did this for practical reasons like writing down their stats (weight, oxygen percents, etc.) or to simply record my thoughts and happy and sad moments.
This keepsake is a great way to keep track of our lives and helps us remember important events such as their first day at school, first operation, first time they wore clothes, or first time we breastfed.
I had a very old Hilroy notebook lying around, and I was quite disappointed. I really wish I’d bought something better. LOL
Chapters usually has nice journals that your friend will love to use, or Paper Source has a lot, with ones you can even customize with a name. You can’t go wrong with this classic leather-bound journal.
5. 5. A Coffee/Tea Thermos with some Snacks
We are again dependent on coffee and snacks. Most food is not allowed in the NICU (at least, it was in ours). It is not possible to bring in smelly leftovers or whole meals to the NICU. This would make it difficult for preemies to digest and could also cause problems for nurses and other staff members. Proper hand washing is essential to avoid foodborne illnesses.
I used to buy huge bags of trail mix, along with instant oatmeal pouches and granola bars to keep in my room.
You can impress your friend by putting together a basket with non-smelly snacks that can be kept in the NICU.
Bonus points for including a coffee thermos!! Are you right that moms don’t get hot coffee? I love my Contigo chalkboard coffee travel mug.
These were my favorites:
6. Preemie Milestone Cards
These are great for photos! These were gifted to me by a fellow NICU mom. I absolutely loved them. These cards were great for “regular” milestones like reaching certain weights or being off oxygen. Unfortunately, they weren’t available to me in my case.
I’m not sure where she got them, so these aren’t the exact ones she got, but this store sells lots of different styles of them (+ other great preemie gifts! These are the best.
7. 7. A phone charging case
Image from luxylemon.com
Our NICU was new and had outlets all over. But in a lot hospitals that were built before mobile phones existed, it’s rare to find an outlet in a hallway.
It’s not about being able take pictures and call your family. It’s like having a lifeline for when you need to go out for coffee or eat and then ask the nurses to contact you in case of an emergency. It gives you the assurance that you are always available in an emergency.
Nowadays they even have battery charging cases.
I haven’t tried a case like this myself before but this battery case looks pretty cool – it can charge your phone twice without even plugging it in. (Magic.
Food is always a favorite! Everyone loves food. After my discharge from the hospital, we were fortunate to have some people cook us meals. It was so nice. We need food for our bodies, not only because we are hungry, but also because I am a nursing (pumping!) mom and need to get my calories in order to make milk.
Understanding that not everyone is up for socializing at this time may help you to offer to deliver your meal to them at a pre-arranged time. They will be grateful.
BONUS! You could also purchase an item for your friend from my Etsy shop.
All profits will go to BC Women’s Hospital, NICU. My boys stayed there. I’m adding new shirts every day! This one is perfect for NICU moms!
Or, this onesie for a NICU grad…
Are you a current/past NICU parent? What were the gifts you appreciated receiving while in the hospital? Or what would you have preferred for people to do to help you? Leave your comments below so others can get more gift ideas.
10 gifts for NICU moms, dads and nurses that will make them feel loved
A special level of support is needed for new parents who have a newborn in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). These gift ideas are not only for parents, but also for nurses who work in the NICU.
No matter what the circumstances, welcoming a baby can be both joyful and stressful. If your baby is special-care dependent, you will feel the stress of a new parent.
“Many times the excitement and anticipation of child birth is now replaced with anxiety and the challenges that come from caring for a medically-complex baby,” says Kathy Burkett, NICU Patient and Family Engagement Coordinator at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio, whose own daughter spent time in the NICU. The health care journey can be long and can bring on a variety of emotions.
And given that newborns in the United States are increasingly likely to be admitted to a NICU, more parents out there could use extra support. These gift ideas are perfect for NICU parents and dedicated NICU nurses, who provide care for critically ill babies each day.
The Best Gifts For NICU Parents
Burkett suggests simple care packages, journals and anything that can help a NICU parent feel comfortable and well-fed. Here are some examples:
Credit to EveryTinyThing.com
Every Little Thing NICU Journal
The Every Little Thing journal gives parents the opportunity to keep track of everything that is happening in their baby’s day. There are prompts and places to record the day, and a weekly summary page where you can track baby’s milestones, likes and dislikes, and write a longer journal entry.
Credit: Parachute Home
Parachute Home Cozy Booties
These Parachute Home unisex booties are perfect for anyone who needs comfortable footwear to wear while in the NICU, or to take off their tired feet at home. These booties are made of supersoft sherpa, which is perfect for colder months or cold hallways at the NICU. You can give choose Gifts For Nicu Nurses
Honest Ready Safe Go Adult Gift Set
You need to take extra precautions when you go to and from the hospital. This all-in-one gift kit from Honest includes two masks and a hand sanitizer and disinfecting spray. It also contains alcohol wipes and face and body lotions.
Credit to Pipette
Pipette to Mama, with Love Set
This bath and body set, which is non-toxic, contains ingredients that are safe and soothing for postpartum skin. The set also contains a dry brush to use on the body, which is a great way to achieve glowing skin.
Credit to The Dad Hoodie
The Dad Hoodie Gifts For Nicu Nurses
The super-soft hoodie features a number of storage pockets that make it easy for you to transport your necessities to the NICU.you can choose Gifts For Nicu Nurses
Credit: Spoonful of Comfort
Spoonful of Comfort: New Parent Care Package
This care package will be appreciated by NICU parents who are unlikely to spend a lot of time in their kitchen. This care package includes a 64-oz. You can choose from many flavors, including a jar of soup, half a dozen bacci rolls and half a dozen cookies.
Credit: Crate and Barrel
Crate and Barrrel Lunch Gift Set
This set includes a glass water bottle, toteable salad container and colorful napkins that can be reused. It also contains champagne-flavored gummy bears and inspiring quote cards.
The Best Gifts For NICU Nurses
Burkett notes that NICU staff will appreciate being recognized in the form a gift card or a delivery of food, and other special gifts. Here are some ideas:
Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Mug Gifts For Nicu Nurses
This mug is a great way to honor the NICU nurse who cares for your child or your loved one.
SendaMeal.com Gift Certificate Gifts For Nicu Nurses
Nursing staff working long hours in the NICU can make it difficult for them to prepare meals. SendaMeal.com can help you send a thank-you dinner for two or four. The gift recipients will receive an elegant voucher along with a list of dessert menus and dinner menus.
Credit to Bean Box
Bean Box Good Morning Gift Box Gifts For Nicu Nurses
The Bean Box Good Morning Gift Set adds a touch of luxury to a nurse in the NICU’s morning (or any time) coffee fix. The set includes four artisan coffees and two biscotti cookies. It also contains two dutch stroop wafels and two gourmet granola pouches. There are two artisan preserves that can be spread or dipped.
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