Babies sure do need a lot of stuff.
Luckily for first-time moms, a baby shower provides the perfect opportunity to stock up on most of the goods you’ll need (not to mention the ability to celebrate your soon-to-be-bundle of joy with all your loved ones, of course). On the other hand, the physical act of registering for what you need can be daunting … at least it was for me. My first tip — after having gone through it myself — would be to never go it alone. Bring a trusted mom with you who has been-there-done-that to help you out.
Another thing you’ll want to keep in mind is that for as shiny, cute and fun as everything in that baby store may look, some of it will be just downright unnecessary. The trick to walking away from your shower feeling prepped for the baby is to carefully curate what you put on your registry, so that you know your gifts will really come in handy when your little one arrives. To that end, here are a couple things that you might want to consider leaving off your registry. Of course every mom will be different, and a registry is a personal thing, but in my experience (and those of my friends and family who have gone through it), avoiding the following things can help you ensure that what you get is what you really need.
Item 1: Clothing
It’s not that you won’t need clothing, because you will, but the truth is itty bitty baby clothes are so darn cute, you’d be surprised how many people will throw them in as add-ons to their shower gifts, anyway. On top of that, baby clothing is one of the easiest things to borrow from friends and family whose kids have outgrown their own. The point is, even if you leave those adorable onesies off your registry, you can be all but assured that you’ll receive some anyway, or at least be able to find them for free elsewhere.
Item 2: A changing table
Specific changing tables are somewhat of an antiquated notion these days, when it’s just as easy to register for a regular dresser (which your child can use right up until the day she moves out of your home) and throw a changing pad on top of it for as long as you need to. One thing you might want to consider adding to your registry, though, is a portable diaper caddy that you can keep elsewhere in your house, that way you don’t have to keep running to the baby’s room for necessities every time she needs to be changed.
Item 3: A breast pump
Even if you’ll be using bottle-feeding, most moms still need to have a breast pump on hand for when they go back to work or when they simply aren’t around and the baby’s caretaker needs access to breast milk. Electric or manual breast pumps and all the accouterment that goes with them can be expensive, though, so before throwing the latest and greatest version on your registry, check with your health insurance company to see if you qualify to rent one for free (which many people do, thanks to the Affordable Care Act).
Item 4: A wipe warmer
Why have someone drop $20 to $40 on a gadget to warm up wipes for your baby when you can simply hold the wipe in your hand for a minute or two before using to warm it up? This is definitely one item that’s worth waiting until you actually have your baby to determine whether or not you absolutely have to have it.
Item 5: A bassinet
Bassinets can be beautiful, but in actuality your baby will grow out of one pretty quickly, so it’s probably not worth the cost. Instead, if you want the baby to stay in your room with you for a while before putting her directly into her crib, you might consider something like a Pack ‘n Play that easily folds up and can travel with you, and that can be used as a playpen for the baby when she’s awake, as well.
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