Working from home with a baby is a win-win…you get time with your precious little one and make money at the same time. Ideally, your baby will take long naps plus sleep through the night at just a few weeks old, so you have plenty of time to do #AllTheThings.
Except, it doesn’t always work that way.
In fact, juggling your work from home job with kids can be tough, exhausting, and even maddening at times.
From my experience working from home with a baby, a toddler, and now one of each, I’ve learned a lot. So to help you avoid those days when you want to pull your hair out because you can’t seem to get anything done, here are the products and tips that have helped figure out how to work from home effectively with babies.
Products For Working From Home With A Baby Easier
Note: This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my full disclosure for more info.
1. Baby Carrier
A good baby carrier is a key tool for working from home with a baby. Babies need to be held. Baby carriers allow us to give baby the physical comfort and touch she needs while our hands can be free to do other things, like work on the computer, make a phone call, do laundry, cook, or take care of older kids.
When I say a “good” carrier I mean an ergonomic baby carrier that correctly supports baby’s spine, pelvis, and hips. I used to have the Baby Bjorn but it killed my back after a short time. After some research and talking with experienced moms, I discovered “ergonomic carriers” are better for both mom and baby.
After I invested in a better baby carrier, I could wear baby for hours without pain and my baby was content for much longer too. This allowed a lot less time soothing and a lot more time to be productive. With a good carrier, you keep baby close, supported, sneak all the sweet new baby smells you want, and still have your hands free to do other things.
The One I Use
I use the Standard Tula Baby Carrier. It’s comfortable, has a pocket for your phone and keys, and comes in adorable prints. Right now it sells for $139 directly from the Tula website, but you can find a lot of them on Amazon for $100. This carrier is for babies and toddlers who weigh between 15-45 pounds. You can wear babies on your front or back. My daughter is now 3 and still easily fits in this carrier.
For my second child, I got the Baby Tula Infant Insert so I could wear my baby in my carrier right away. Babies weighing between 7-15 lbs need an extra infant insert to properly support them in the Tula Carrier. So if you’ll be working from home with a newborn, the right baby carrier can help you give snuggles while keeping your hands free.
Other Good Baby Carriers
Tula Free-to-Grow Carrier, the new style Tula create that grows with your child from newborn to toddler (no infant insert needed)
A good laptop has been another key ingredient for figuring out how to work home with a toddler and baby. While a desktop computer is good for working in a home office, it’s not feasible when you have an on-the-go lifestyle when you’re trying to work from home with kids. A laptop, on the other hand, can go with you anywhere: the recliner, couch, outside, in the car or even in bed when needed.
The One I Use
I have an Apple MacBook Pro and absolutely love it for working from home effectively. I’m a big fan of Apple products and this one has not disappointed. Of course, Apple is top-of-the-line when it comes to computers, so you’re going to pay top dollar for these premium laptops.
More Laptops With Good Reviews
3. Breast Pump
If you are a breastfeeding mom, you will spend many hours nursing your baby. While you might be able to get some work done while nursing, another way to maximize your time is to pump with an electric breast pump. You can maximize your time by pumping one side while nursing on the other or pumping both sides to get double the milk. You can let someone else feed the baby so you can get a longer time to work.
The One I Use
I use the Medela Pump In Style Advanced Breast Pump. This pump has gotten many, many hours of use from my days of working outside the home. You can use it at home or even in the car with the right attachments. Having a reliable breast pump can help you give baby the best nutrition while maximizing your limited time.
Other Good Recommended Breast Pumps
Electric – Signature Pro by Lansinoah
Manual – NatureBond Silicone Manual Breast Pump
Money-Saving Tip: Check with your health insurance about getting a breast pump for free or discounted price. This was a perk I did not know about as a new mom!
4. Hands-Free Pumping Bra
A hands-free pumping bra is one of those things I wished I had bought sooner! After months of holding the bottles while pumping, it was amazing to finally have my hands free and multitask while pumping.
The One I Use
The Lansinoh Simple Wishes Signature Hands-Free Pumping Bra is the one I have and it is awesome. But you don’t have to take my word for it. Check out the reviews from over 7,000 happy moms who bought this bra on Amazon.
Other Good Hands-Free Pumping Bras
HOFISH Wireless Hands-Free Nursing Bra
5. Baby Swing
A baby swing that baby loves was another key for me as I was working from home with a baby. It was awesome to have the swing as an option when baby needed something new to do, and honestly, I used the swing a lot in the younger months for naps. Sometimes this was the only thing that would make baby happy! There are noise and music options, which I used the heartbeat noise the most.
The One I Use
Graco DuetConnect LX Swing and Bouncer– Both of my babies were fans of swings that swayed side-to-side. Neither was a fan of the swing we had that swung front to back. Seems weird, I know. But I was so glad I found this swing that also came with a bouncer as it helped soothe my baby both for playtime or for naps. Some days my son’s only long nap of the day would be in this swing!
Other Good Recommended Baby Swings
Graco DuetSoothe Swing + Rocker
6. Video Baby Monitor
A video baby monitor was an awesome tool for me because sometimes baby was making noises in his crib and I thought my work time was over. However, by being able to see baby on the monitor, I sometimes realized he was just making sleep noises or rolling around a bit trying to get back to sleep. Without the video monitor, I would have went in his room to get him and ended the sleep session. This also came in handy when our first became a toddler because I could tell if she needed something or if she was just being silly in her crib.
The One I Use
I have the Summer Infant Baby Secure Video Baby Monitor and it’s helped our family for over 3 years now. My only issue is that we’ve had to replace the battery once, but other than that it has served us well. Since both of our kids were noisy sleepers from day one, the video part has been a key feature on our monitors and has brought us peace of mind many times.
Other Good Recommended Baby Monitors
Infant Optics DXR-8 Video Baby Monitor
Home Video Baby Monitor Camera
7. Bouncy Seat
Using a bouncy seat was another thing that helped me when I was working from home with a baby. While tummy time, time on their back, and time being held is preferred over too much time in a baby device, there were many times when the bouncy seat came in incredibly handy, like when I:
- needed to take a shower
- needed to cook dinner
- needed to get work done
The One I Use
I probably would not have bought a bouncy seat because I simply didn’t want another bulky baby item. So I didn’t know how much I’d use it until the swing I bought came with a bouncy seat too. Graco DuetConnect LX Swing and Bouncer. Had I bought one separately, I would have looked for one that had lights, music, or more engaging discovery toys on it. The bouncer disconnected from the swing super easy and could be easily carried anywhere in the house or outside. Once my little one got more mobile and wanted to move more, a Jumper was my go-to thing to put baby in when I needed to get something done.
Other Good Recommended Baby Bouncers
Fisher Price Infant-to-Toddler Rocker
There is a big difference in my productivity on the days where I have a plan and days where I don’t. While there’s nothing wrong with flying by the seat of your pants and rolling with the punches, if you have work that needs to get done and you’re juggling kids, you must create a plan. That way when you are blessed with a few minutes to work you know exactly what your first priority is–and isn’t. Writing a freelance writing post that you’ll get paid for? Yes. Browsing Facebook or Instagram? Not so much. But without intentionally planning your ideal work from home schedule, your precious time can easily be sucked by a “quick” email check or peek at social media. Trust me…
The One I Use
This year I bought the Passion Planner for the first time. I was skeptical at first since I see myself as a natural planner and goal setter but within the first day of reading the front matter and using it, I knew it was the right choice. It helped me break down my big goals for the year into manageable steps that I actually scheduled to help keep me on track.
Update: I used the Living Well Planner this year. Check out my Living Well Planner review if you’re looking for a new planner.
Other Good Recommended Planners
9. Bluetooth Headphones
I used the earbuds that came with my iPhone for a long time, but when baby #2 got curious and yanked them out of my ears every time he was nursing or he was in the carrier and I was trying to listen to something, it got old fast. I decided to try wireless Bluetooth earbuds and it helped a lot since the cord was no longer danging near him. So if you can’t get something done because baby is distracted by the noise or cords of whatever you’re tryig to listen to, check out a pair of Bluetooth headphones and see if that helps you figure out how to get things done with a baby around.
The Ones I Use
I have the SENSO Bluetooth Headphones. At $30, they are nothing amazing, but they get the job done. I chose these because I needed a pair that would stay in good while I’m running and I didn’t want to spend a ton of money. They easily connect to my laptop or phone so I can listen and have my hands free. Another bonus is these block out noise better than other headphones I used. So when Mr. CommonCents is in charge of our little ones, I can block out their happy (and unhappy) yells.
Other Good Recommended Bluetooth Headphones
Cowin E7 Active Noise-Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones
Mpow Flame Bluetooth Headphones
10. Robot Vacuum
If you’ve read my post about things I’m glad I splurged on, you’ll know that I love my Robot Vacuum, “Robo.” If you’re a mom who’s trying to figure out how to work from home with a baby, chances are you also wish you had more time or help with house chores.
Enter: Robot Vacuum. I used to think these were kind of a joke until I had to figure out how to work from home with a toddler and a newborn. I’m not the best at ignoring a messy house, so the Roomba was a perfect solution and Christmas gift. By just making sure an area is relatively clear, I can push the button and Robo will clean the floors for me. It works on both carpet and hard surfaces and allows me more time to get my work done and have clean floors too. Or at least semi-clean. 😉
The One I Use
I have the iRobot Roomba 650, which is a little older model that’s harder to find now. You can get a better deal on a newer model that uses Wi-Fi by buying the iRobot Roomba 675 instead. Then get ready for your floors to be cleaned while you are free to do something else!
Other Good Recommended Robot Vacuums
Make Working From Home With A Baby Easier
With the products and tips for working from home with a baby above, you’ll be a master at balancing both in no time. Start slow.
Which product that I use don’t you have yet? Put it in your budget and see if it helps! Don’t expect a magic pill to give you immediate success, but stick with it and you’ll see improvement over time.
With persistence and trial-and-error, you’ll figure out how to work from home with a baby (and toddler) while keeping your sanity.
Which item will you try? Did I miss something that works great for you? Share your best product for working from home with a baby in the comments below.
I’m always open to new ideas for maximizing my time as a work-from-home mom.
Spend your time and money intentionally,