14 Must-haves Baby and Toddler Items for Happy Grandparents

Must haves baby and toddler items at grandparents

Almost 2 years ago, I became a new grandmother and of course I needed to find or buy must-haves baby and toddler items to keep at my house.

Now my first grandson will be 2 in May and second grandson was born in March 2020, right in the middle of the pandemic crisis.

I’ll need to find more stuff to keep the 2 year old entertained and you know what? I forget what it was like 30 years ago when my daughter was that age.

Boys don’t play the same way!

As a new grandmother, I needed basic equipment that I could either find cheap through Facebook Marketplace or local or online garage sales, or given by friends or family.

Then buy whatever I was missing.


Travel Crib

Someone gave me our travel crib. My grandson still sleeps in it when he comes over. It has 2 levels, one higher up for a little baby and a lower one when the child is older.

It can also be used as a playpen as it has a lot of space.

You can find similar ones on Amazon.


My 2-year old grandson started to sleep in his open crib (the front is open) and I didn’t think he would still want to sleep in the baby travel crib above.

I needed to find a solution and I ordered this inflatable toddler bed to try.

It took less than 5 minutes to set up and he was very excited to sleep in his new bed. We were worried he would get up and investigate the room, but nope, he stayed in and slept for 3 hours!

Diaper Pail

These did not exist in my time, but they are great.

Very useful, you can fill it up and you won’t smell anything. This is the most popular one and the one I have.

Baby Play Mat

Super helpful and so cute.

And the fun activities are very good for the baby’s development and stimulation.

You can find all kinds, some even have water in it.

Baby Rattle & Teething Toys

These are the cutest ever toys to soothe the baby!

Definitely will come in handy, especially if the parents forgot to pack them.

I’m getting them for sure for our new addition to the family.

Baby Bouncer

A must-have item at grandma’s house.

You can’t have your baby in your arms all day long, so this bouncer will cradle, soothe with gentle vibrations and music.

Babies love these…so do parents. We used it a lot these past 2 weeks while my daughter was living here with the newborn, because the oldest had a virus.

High Chair

must-haves baby and toddlers items for grandma's house

An essential baby and toddler item of course. If you decide to buy new, you’ll find a wide range of prices.

You can probably find one on Facebook Marketplace or garage sales in your neighbourhood, Just make sure it’s comfortable. The first one I bought from the Marketplace had no support for the back. I only noticed once I got it home. Newbie mistake 🙂

The one I have now was given to me by a friend who asked me to do the same once we don’t need it anymore…pay it forward and give it to someone else who needs it and ask they do the same.

Love this idea.

Baby Cloths

Very useful to wash their faces and fingers after meals and if you need to give a bath. They are thinner than regular ones and softer.

Baby Car Seat

We definitely needed one to be able to go pick-up the kids to stay at our house.

If you are going to buy a used one, make sure the expiry date is good.

I couldn’t believe how expensive those are! Like $800…why would anyone pay that much, even the parents, for something that will last only a few years.

I bought mine at Walmart.

But beware…you need to make sure the seat will fit facing backwards. Before buying I would suggest you measure the length from the foot to the top back of the car seat.

I tried to install mine (not an easy task) and it was wobbly. I went to our local firehouse where a nice and cute fireman also tried to install it.

We discovered that the car seat did not fit in my car, a Yaris Hatchback. It’s important to know that you need enough space between the car seat and the front seat to move your hand up and down and the front seat cannot be pushed all the way upfront, even if a passenger can sit in it.

We use the RAV4 instead when we need to transport the kids.


the white tool is only available in Canada 🙂

The UnbuckleMe tool is one you definitely need.

I discovered it when I read the story on Pam’s blog and later watched the mother and daughter on Shark Tank.

I just got mine last week and it’s perfect.

In the past 4 months, we babysat our 2-year old grandson every week and I had so much trouble unbuckling him every time, especially in winter with a bulky snow suit.

Now this tool makes it so easy and fast. I love it! Visit their site for more info

Baby Gate

That can be tricky, depending of how and where your stairs are located. You can buy kits with different styles and different widths and also whether it’s at the top or the bottom of the stairs.

We have a bungalow and the basement is finished where the family room is. So the stairs are going down and one side is the wall and the other side is the railing.

We could not find a kit to buy that would fit in the opening or that would require a handyman to fix.

Since both my husband and I are not in that category, we had it made by a friend who knows what he’s doing!

In our case, it was also a dog gate. Our oldest dog, at 12 years old, can go down the stairs but cannot go back up and he’s a chocolate lab and heavy.

Baby Proofing Gadgets

My toddler grandchild doesn’t come often enough to warrant installing these gadgets… We are constantly following him around the house.

But if yours spend lots of time at your house, it definitely is a good idea.

Plastic Cup, Kid’s Utensils, Plate and Bowl, Bibs

I never thought to get those for our house, but will definitely get the whole enchilada now. That way my daughter won’t have to pack them any time the grandkids come over.

Silicone baby bibs are really the best, so easy to clean.


🙂 Yes believe me, you need this and maybe Disney channel.

My grandson is a very big fan of Paw Patrol. He gets to watch it twice a day but limited to 20 minutes at a time. It will keep him quiet for a bit.

2 years old attention span are very short.

Got to constantly find activities to do with them.

Toys and Books

I was lucky to find a great deal on Facebook Marketplace. The lady was closing her daycare,

I was able to get 2 big farms, 2 tractors and all the little animals for $20.

Kijiji and garage sales are also great places to find deals on toys and books.

Child Standing Tower

I had never heard of this when my daughter asked me if I could make one using the Ikea hack that you can see all over Pinterest.

Sure I said…no problem!

She already had bought the Ikea step stool.

Then I watched videos and read tutorials on how to make one. For a handy person, that would be very easy to make. For us, not so much!

I went online and try to find an already made one. Most of what I saw on Amazon (in Canada) were very expensive and made of wood.

But I was determine to find one and I did, at Wayfair.ca (Canada) and it’s very easy to clean (made of plastic) and has 2 positions and it’s very light to carry. It is very sturdy.

My grandson absolutely loves it.

We bring it here when he comes over since it’s easy to transport.

Wayfair.com (in the US) doesn’t seem to have the same one I bought. But they do have this one available though and it’s foldable, very practical.

I think I’ve listed all the baby and toddler items we have here at our house, but if I forgot something, please let me know in the comments.

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