I made a statement in my bed-sharingpost about big chain stores kind of shoving what you need down your throat when you register. Not really shoving down your throat, just a ton of useless items on a registrar check list. We, like many new parents, didn’t know exactly what was needed and not needed; what worked well vs. what didn’t and found out after much spending that we didn’t need over half of what we bought and what others bought for us. Hopefully this might help out a little based upon our personal experiences in raising Bub through the first 9 months.
I’d like to start off by pointing out that a good majority of what we didn’t need was based upon how we chose to parent. What I mean is our methods and style doesn’t utilize a lot of what the “normal” approach would have you believe you need. For example, child baths and pods and all those little (actually large and no-where-to-store) baby tubs are completely useless. We, as adults take showers/baths every day, so why not have Bub when there with you? Increase bonding and have a clean baby without the expensive space waster in the bathroom? I know, what about when their newborns with the cord still on? Well, a cheap $5 formed foam pad for a quick sponge bath works just grand. So before you go creating lists and whatnot – try, to the best of what you’re able to, figure out your techniques of how you plan on raising baby.
**The links provided are to Amazon as examples, support your local shops and buy from there if possible. They may cost more, but it supports community and possibly forge new relationships.**
Awesome Products – Must Haves
- · Nose Frida – You may seem skeptical when thinking about how you use this. Yes, you literally suck the snot from Bubs nose. Don’t worry; there are filters and chambers that the green stuff can’t possibly penetrate. But this thing is a miracle worker. Those blue bulb things didn’t work a damn for us.
- · Rock ‘N Play Sleeper – Bub slept next to the bed the first 4-5 months in this, before he was big enough to join us in bed. He wanted nothing to do with the pack and play, so we strapped him in this and he slept pretty damn peacefully. Easy access right next to bed for night time nursing and transportable for daytime naps in the living room.
- · Moby Wrap / Ring Sling – First off, why are only women modeling all of these in the search results? These things are an absolute must have. Mrs. K had a ring sling and was
loststolen while eating out. I prefer a soft structured carrier – KinderCarry(and look! Dad carrier-Models!). Don’t fall victim to over-priced structured carries and definitely stay away from crotch danglers! Why not bond with your little one while you’re out instead of carrying them in a heavy, clunky carrier or stroller. Why wouldn’t you want them nestled up against you? Bub absolutely loves to be carried everywhere we go. Did I mention how easy it is for a mom on the go? All you need to pack is baby, wrap, and some diapers!
- · Cloth Diapers – I know what you’re thinking. Why are cloth diapers a must have. I know, I know; disposable are easy, quick and well, disposable. I could write an entire article on cloth vs. disposable. Cloth is much, much cheaper in the long haul, nicer for baby; and more earth friendly. As added bonuses – they can be re-sold (don’t believe me? Look into it.) or donated after potty training and they make awesome fashion statements during the summer months. May I suggest the bamboo inserts over cotton?
- · Last on the must have list would be a Hygeia Breast Pump. If you’re getting a pump, (for breast-feeding moms its essential) this is absolutely the one to get. It’s pricey, but well, well worth it; and the customer service is the best I’ve ever encountered. Just about every pump shouldn’t be re-used by a different mother because of their open system. This one is closed.
I know most of these are going to get scoffed at. But again, it depends on how you choose to parent.
Un-needed Products – Money/Space Wasters
- · Let’s get the gasps out of the way. It’s a crib. What?! Where will he sleep? He sleeps with mom and dad. We bought into the hype and purchased a middle of the road crib. It now collects all his cloth diapers and clothes. He’s never slept in it. Not once. It was, essentially, a waste of money. Why spend $500 on a crib when you could purchase a simple bed frame for them when they graduate to their own bed?
- · While we’re on the topic of big baby furniture, why not throw a changing table in there as well. While we didn’t get one, it’s still a ploy to get you to buy something you don’t need. A $15 dollar changing pad and a little floor space or couch cushion is more than sufficient.
- · A Stroller – See what I did there? With having ring slings and wraps on the must have above, you had to have seen this one coming. Carry your child. They’ll love it. I see moms fighting with strollers all the time in parking lots. Bub’s never been in a stroller. Yes, we’ve bought one of these as well, used it once. It felt too hindering, like our mobility was being restricted. Felt much freer with Bub on your back. If you jog or run and take them with you, then a stroller is a must.
- · Pack ‘N Play – We were given one at Bub’s baby shower. As stated above, Bub wanted nothing to do with it. Something else collecting dust upstairs. When we go to others houses, Bub plays on the floor or is passed from person to person over the course of the evening. Bub loves his freedom, even when he couldn’t roll. If Bub’s in view, why keep him in a pen?
- · A plethora of toys – A simple core group of toys is all that’s necessary. Just swap out toys now and then to keep them fresh. This would include all the crazy lighty, noisy, sing-songy battery-operated toys. It doesn’t allow them to use their imagination and provides instant gratification. And with constant instant gratification comes quick boredom. Rather spread some toys around a defined space and just let them crawl around and explore. No need to a heap of toys.
In the spirit of keeping things balanced, I’ll stop at 5 apiece. This is by means complete on either end; but just touching on the big ones. Again, I can’t stress that this is what fits our lifestyle and probably won’t apply to most people. But opening up and sharing how what works for you might help out others.