Without further ado in no particular order:
1) Boppy Pillow
Whether or not you plan to breastfeed the Boppy is a great tool to have. It helps prop baby up for easier breastfeeding. Also holds baby up off of c-section incisions whether breast or bottle feeding. Boppy is excellent for tummy time and supporting baby when he begins to sit up on his own. I recommend purchasing the waterproof slipcover as well.
I've been through my share of strollers before finding the perfect fit. With our first I believed we needed the regular stroller/carseat combo as well as an "umbrella" style stroller. The City Mini by Baby Jogger stroller allowed me to get rid of both of those in favor of one stroller that will work for every situation. Yes the price is fairly high but I promise it's worth it! The awesome features include: front swivel wheel, one hand fold, extra large canopy, reclining seat, 5 point harness and much more. It folds so compactly it takes up not much more space than the umbrella stroller.
Again do not be afraid of the price of this carseat it is worth every penny! It is convertible and can accommodate your baby/child from 5-120lbs! In other words the only carseat you will ever have to buy! It is in my opinion one of the safest out there with excellent ratings as well as a steel frame! I'll be honest not the lightest at 31.6 lbs. but it does fold up for use as a backpack for those trips through airport security.
4) Cloth Wipes
Shameless plug as I make these but I have used the same ones I made 4 years ago and they have held up excellent. Great for use with cloth diapering, tubby time, kitchen clean up as well as tissues. FYI boogey wipes are far from a necessity! Neither of my boys enjoyed me wiping their noses with those wet cold wipes which are sceneted and I personally disliked the scent.
5) Waterproof mattress pads. I recommend getting two so you have a clean one to put on in the middle of the night when baby spits up or wets through.
We love the Aden and Anais swaddling blankets. You won't need any other recieving blankets. I love the large size of them at 44''x44''. They are wonderful for swaddling as they are stretchy. My favorite though is how breathable they are. For someone who borders on insanity with safe sleeping I have peace of mind when using these blankets. My second son attached to them and I found they make "lovey" size blankets as well!
Over the past four years we have tried out over 6 types of cloth diapers before finally settling on these. Elementals by Bum Genius. I love the soft organic cotton inside. The all-in-one feature makes them very "daddy friendly" and you won't spend time stuffing or matching up pieces after washing. Theses are also a One-size adjustable diaper. The link will take you to our local Cloth Diaper store. They will be able to answer any questions you may have and help you find what will work for you!
8) Reusable Nursing pads.
The are easy to clean and you won't be purchasing box after box of disposable pads.
Grandma El's diaper rash cream is the bomb ;) And smells amazing to boot! Safe for use with cloth diapers as well.
10) Bath products
With our first son we started out with Johnson and Johnson baby products for bathtime but he had a reaction to them and they didn't help at all with his eczema. Our pediatrician recommended Aveeno products and we have used them ever since. With all things going on baby's skin you want to stay away from scents and fragrances. The Aveeno wash and shampoo is lightly scented and the lotion is unscented.
The Arm's Reach Co-Sleeper offers a safe way to keep baby close to you. It comes with straps to hook up right to your bed and one side can lower so baby is level with your mattress. Makes those nighttime feedings so much easier. The mattress does drop to the bottom for later use as a pack n play.
You can't go wrong with any Medela Breastpump but this one is by far my favorite especially for moms having to go back to work. When looking for a pump I'd suggest electric as it's more efficient than a manual pump. The double pump allows you to cut your pumping time in half. What I love in particular with the Freestyle is how it comes with a hands free pumping option. The pump itself is small and lightweight and gives you the option to hook to your belt loop!
If you plan to use them I don't recommend registering for 20 of the same type of bottle. You never know which bottle your baby will take and it's almost nicer to have 2-3 different types of bottles on hand so you can find what works best for you. Our favorites have been Playtex Ventaire and Dr.Browns bottles. Although no matter how many we tried with our second he NEVER took a bottle.
The same deal with bottles it's nice to have a few different ones on hand. Personally the soothie brand ones make me nervous as they are so pliable I have seen older babies get the entire thing in their mouths and recently have heard of babies choking on them! They are still given out at hospitals though so they can't be that bad I suppose. Be sure if you are breastfeeding to wait until you supply is well established (around 2-3 weeks) before introducing a pacifier as they can interfere with the breastfeeding process.
15) Baby Carrier
Baby carrier was a life saver especially with our second baby. Ergo is excellent for it's ease of use, padded shoulder straps and how it holds baby ergonomically correct (as opposed to other infant carriers that hold baby facing out from you). Ergo also makes an infant insert which is helpful in bringing baby up closer to you. Always be sure no matter what carrier you use that baby is close enough for you to kiss the top of his head and his chin is not resting on his chest. Many places offer "baby wearing" courses where you can learn the correct way to baby wear and try out different options as well. I particularly love to have my baby close to me in public spaces as strangers are less likely to touch them. You can nurse discreetly with your baby in a carrier as well!
16) Baby Gym
Both our boys loved this gym from just a few weeks old up until they started crawling around.
We actually sold our Graco brand highchair in favor of an antique wooden highchair that I refinished. The main reason for the switch (other than how cute it turned out) was the fact that I got tired of throwing the fabric cover in the washing machine every couple of days. So if you find an all wooden or plastic high chair it will make cleanup a ton easier. I have seen some very simple functional highchairs at IKEA too!