Baby Gear for the Modern, Connected Mama

Registering for your baby shower is an iconic rite of passage. Through this singular process you go from being a woman with a theoretical life growing inside you to the parent of a baby. It instantaneously takes you from the euphoric fantasy of a baby as an idea to the detailed realities of solely caring for a helpless human being. The scanner is placed in your hand, and the excitement turns to anxiety as you wander down aisles scanning adorable ruffles while secretly panicking.

When it comes down to it, all that your baby really needs is you. The well-marketed baby industry tries to convince soon-to-be parents that they need all kinds of pricey baby gear that they do not need. Atleast one half of the things you buy or are given will not even see use. The more time your baby spends living on your chest, the less “stuff” you need. For example, my baby has an entire wardrobe of adorable, complicated outfits, but he spends any time outside of the house in a wrap; hence, we dress him in comfortable, white one-pieces because no one ever sees his outfits, and my body regulates his body temperature.

There are some things you need, like a car seat and diapers. There are some things that make parenting your infant easier, like a wrap and a nursing bra. There are some things that are nice luxuries, like a wipe warmer and a swing. But there is a ton of stuff on the “checklist of must-haves” according to the large retail stores that you just don’t need. This post can act as a guidebook for the sea of baby products in which you might find yourself wading.

Car

Car Seat

You have two good options with the car seat. You can select a carrier style car seat that attaches to the stroller you have selected. Each stroller accommodates specific brands and may or may not require an adapter. When sporting the car seat carrier, it can be very tempting to leave your baby in it a lot of the time for convenience. You think, “Oh, I’m just running into the store quickly; it will be easier just to leave her in the car seat.” But all those times add up throughout the day. Be mindful of the negative side effects of all that time in a container. It can become a lot of missed opportunity for bonding and developmental growth. It is also important to be warned that car seat carriers do not safely attach to shopping carts or restaurant high chairs (babies have died!).

Your other option is to get a really good convertible car seat that will go the distance (birth to booster seat). I favor this option for my family. Newborns belong in wraps, and you can select a good stroller with a deep incline and use a body support (which can go with baby from car seat to stroller) for those times when you want to lay him down on the go.

Selecting a car seat is a big decision, and I advise doing some research in the form of investigating all of the current options on the market. Product reviews are one of my favorite sources of information (you can even look up video reviews to see the product in action), but also check out safety reviews. Consider the space you have available in your backseat and even things like the ease of removing the fabric (i.e., can you remove the fabric after a diaper blowout without dismantling the entire seat).

Body Support

Some car seats come with these, so be sure to select a car seat first. I have one that makes my baby cozier and more comfortable in his car seat. It can also be adapted to a reclining stroller for a wee one. It came with shoulder straps. There is a wide price range depending on the brand. If your car seat does not come with infant support, you can purchase one separately.

Mirrors

If you put a big mirror in the backseat it will provide a large reflective surface in which to see your baby while you drive, in tandem with and a small mirror that attaches to your rearview mirror. A lot of mom mobiles come with a small mirror up front. A secondary benefit is that your baby gets to enjoy a better view through the mirror than the back of the seat.

Sun Shade

My minivan came with retractable shades built into the large windows, but if you do not drive a swagger wagon like me, you can get an inexpensive shade for your baby’s window. If you drive an SUV and your baby will be in the middle of the backseat, you probably don’t need one. If you drive a small sedan, you will probably need a shade for the back window. You just want to make sure that there is not direct sunlight glaring on your baby.

Car Seat/Backseat Toys

I recommend having a few designated car toys. These are toys that will stay in the car (they make some that dangle from the car seat handle or backseat window). The point is to have a few sources of stimulation that Baby only gets to see or play with in the car. You will thank me later. Be mindful not to overstimulate. If you choose a fun, stimulating backseat mirror with lights and colors and contrast, do not put anything else stimulating within his visual range. When in a car seat, your baby cannot look away so overstimulation can be very stressful. In the beginning, stick to one simple, fun accessory and keep everything else simple and calming (i.e. a backseat mirror that blends into the back seat).

Stroller

I have an expensive jogging stroller. It cost a fortune but I have gone through four strollers and disliked them all. With the money I have spent going through the cheaper strollers, I could have had the pricey jogging stroller long ago. Every review I have read, every conversation I have ever had about strollers, has revolved around how much parents love their fancy jogging stroller. If you decide a pricey stroller is not for you, consider at least getting a jogging stroller, even if you do not jog. I find jogging strollers to be infinitely easier to push and maneuver. But be cautioned that I purchased a lesser-brand jogging stroller from a discount store and the front wheel shook so badly that it actually flipped over with my child in it. I was warned of this in the product reviews but the price was too irresistible. Boy did I regret it.

Despite what society would have you believe, a stroller is actually not a necessity. I like to say, “Strollers are for stuff. Slings are for babies.” I do not advocate taking your stroller everywhere on a daily basis, but when you go to a big place all day long, the reality is that your stroller is your mobile command center. It can carry all the stuff and serve as a changing table. We now rock a Bob jogging stroller and we are so happy with it. Check for company sales (we purchased ours during a company-wide twice yearly sale) and daily deals to save a bundle.

Please be mindful that the restraints on a stroller (or other baby container) are for physical safety, not to create disciplinary boundaries. They are meant to prevent your baby from falling out and incurring harm. Once your child is old enough to get in and out on his own, the restraints should not be used against his will. If you want your child to remain seated in the stroller, utilize effective communication and appropriate disciplinary strategies to establish that preferred boundary in consideration of his wants and the autonomy of his body. I cringe to see an older child writhing to escape from a mobile prison. A ride in the kid cruiser should be a positive experience, not a sentence to be carried out. [Want to learn HOW? Click here to read my post We Have a Runner.]

Stroller Toys

Same guidelines as for car seat toys.

Diapering

You definitely want to look into all your options. It’s a very personal choice that needs to be based on your baby’s needs and your lifestyle preference.

Cloth Diapers

I am a converted cloth mama. I began my diapering journey with disposables, but mild rashes (babies with sensitive skin and rashes despite frequent diaper changes) and the tug of Mother Earth pulled us into the world of cloth diapers and we love it. Once we switched to cloth, the pink bottom was gone. It saves us money, is heaven on my baby’s skin, and I have a clear conscience not dumping thousands of diapers into the mountains of waste currently accumulating on our planet. Our cloth diaper model functions just like a disposable. I take the diaper off, throw it in a pail, and I toss it in the washing machine every couple days. Our diaper pail is a trashcan with a step opener and plastic handled liner (I simply pull out the inner can and dump it in the washing machine). If we are on the go, we toss the diaper in a wet bag. If the diaper is full of solid waste, you can dump the poop in the toilet before you toss it in the pail.

There are hybrid options on the market too that combine a cloth shell with either a disposable or cloth insert. You can use disposable liners (that are biodegradable and not as hazardous to the planet as the plastic disposables) or cloth liners (or a mix of both). They are cute, fit comfortably, and it’s nice to be able to swap out a wet liner as opposed to changing the whole diaper.

If you are going this route, I highly recommend taking a cloth diapering class or thoroughly educating yourself through other families, local baby boutiques, or the web.

Cloth Diaper Service

A cloth diaper service is a good option if you are not in favor of washing the diapers yourself. They leave a bag of clean diapers on your front door (usually cloth inserts that you put in a cover) and you leave the bag of dirty diapers outside the front door to be picked up. You pay a monthly fee and it’s really that simple.

Disposable Diapers

When your baby is born, you will need newborn-sized diapers that usually contain a cutout for the belly button. I do not recommend buying very many of this size because your baby could very quickly outgrow these tiny, adorable diapers. If you are going to register for diapers for your shower, I recommend a spread of the smaller sizes so you always have the next size up to try on and your baby won’t outgrow them before you can use them.

Wipes

I go with a natural, sensitive option, avoiding fragrances and other chemical additives.

Be mindful of rashes on Baby’s bottom. If Baby’s bottom skin is irritated, try a different brand of wipes, diapers, and then soap (one at a time). Baby bottoms do not need baby powder, baby oil, or lotion.

Wipe Warmer

Not a necessity, but a nice luxury. They are especially good for middle-of-the-night diaper changes. Changing a diaper during the night with a cold wipe can be startling and wake your baby up more than necessary. My third baby was particularly sensitive to the temperature of the cold wipes; he is so much happier with warmed ones.

Diaper Receptacle

If you are going the disposable route, I recommend getting a system designed to contain the smell of the dirty diapers.

Wet Bag

These are very useful and you should definitely have one in your diaper bag (or car). There are a lot of different companies that make them in varying styles, sizes and price points. Basically, they are a waterproof, green version of the disposable plastic bags commonly used around the kitchen. You will place your dirty diapers (if using cloth or if using disposables and there is not a trash can nearby), soiled clothes, etc. in the bag while you are out and about in the world.

Baby Care

Lotion/Cream/Oil

The only thing I recommend having on hand is some coconut oil, which can be used for infant massage, diaper rash, and even cradle cap. Baby’s skin in general does not need any extra moisturizing. If your baby has a dry patch or rash for which the pediatrician recommends a specific product, then you can buy it and use it. You can leave this section off your registry.

Medicine

As far as over-the-counter meds are concerned, it’s really best to wait until they are needed. They are usually not advised and they are frequently recalled.

Amber Necklace

I am a fan of these stylish necklaces being modeled by babies. I humorously find them serving as a sort of badge of green parenting. However, their function actually lies outside of fashionably accessorizing. Amber teething necklaces consist of healing beads of amber that deliver natural pain relief, absorbed through the skin. They can go a long way in reducing symptoms of teething without the potential risk or side effects of medication. I even double it around my baby’s ankle after a shot.

Thermometer

Temporal thermometers are the new standard in temperature reading. You simply run it along your baby’s forehead to his temple, and in a couple seconds you are done.

Nose Sucker

There is a product on the market that uses a design in which you suck on the end of a tube and all of the mucus is collected at the base of the tube. This product looks insane, but it works so well! I ditched the old-school suction bulb design (which doesn’t work as well, tortures my baby, and harbors mold) in favor of this new product.

Laundry Detergent

Since a baby is so sensitive, you do need a very gentle and mild soap for washing Baby’s clothes. For example, your detergent should be unscented, as scent additives can irritate a baby’s skin and disrupt the bonding that comes from imprinting with her parent’s natural scent.

Babywearing

Babywearing is a vital parenting tool that will be addressed in detail later on. For now, let’s focus on what you’ll need to make it happen. If you get nothing else, I recommend getting slings/wraps/carriers. Have one or two on hand from the get-go. In the beginning, I could not live without my Baby K’tan. It was like a second womb. This pouch is so versatile yet so easy to use. Whether my baby is breastfeeding, exploring, or sleeping, I can still do it all—hands free. And through it all, my baby is always close for love, touch, and interaction. Once my baby was heavier, we switched to the Ergo Baby Carrier, which has a thick waistband and padded shoulder straps to support his weight, and we used it daily for the first 3 years of Bailey’s life. Once my gigantor West hit 1 we got the Tula Toddler and have been rocking it every day since. I encourage you to seek out and try what brands you think would be the best fit for your baby and you. [Read my Tula Toddler review here.]

Diaper Bag

Oh, how I love diaper bags. They are purses for you and your baby. Get a bag that reflects your style and accommodates your needs. A bag that converts from a shoulder carry to a backpack is nice. I am in love with my waterproof, convertible bag with all the bells and whistles that my husband and I can both rock out. I am not really a fan of paying an exorbitant amount of money for a brand name. However, I am willing to make some financial sacrifice for a quality product. This is especially true for a product that, if not functioning in an organized fashion, results in the loss of my sanity. We own the Ju Ju Be brand BFF model.

Here is what your diaper bag will contain:

Once they are a little older, I add:

  • Two toys
  • Snack
  • Bandages

Additionally, I keep a change of clothes, a set of diapers, wipes, a clean shirt for me, a baby blanket, and sunscreen in the trunk of the car.

Activity

Swing

I really like my swing, which can be positioned in several directions and has numerous speed options, as well as music and vibration at your disposal. I do not recommend leaving babies in containers for long periods of time, but a swing can buy you the hands-free five or 10 minutes you need to get dressed or carry in a few heavy groceries from the car. It can also be helpful as an inclined sleep container for those times when your baby is congested or has reflux (to be used in combination with your chest while you are propped up on some pillows). The only downside to a swing is that it takes up a lot of space. Swings are pricey and my baby probably only spends five minutes in it each day. It is definitely not a necessity, but a nice luxury. You might consider purchasing one secondhand, since babies quickly outgrow them.

Bouncer

You really only need one baby container in the house, so you can choose between a bouncer seat and a swing. The benefit to a bouncer is that it is small and mobile, so you can put it on the bathroom floor to take a shower and the bedroom floor while you get dressed, etc. It is also much less expensive than a swing.

Playmat

I like playmats for times when you are on the floor with your baby. For example, when I fold laundry I lay my baby next to or in front of me on his playmat and I talk to and play with him while I fold. It is also good for tummy time. Again, not a necessity—you can simply lay down a blanket. But the playmat is a nice luxury because it has color contrasts and textures on the mat itself and a place to hang toys above, all to stimulate Baby for a little fun floor time.

Stationary Activity Entertainer

I recommend getting the jumpy style. Baby can jump while playing with the toys and activities around the swiveling seat in the center. This replaces the swing once she outgrows it, so this product is not something that needs to be purchased right away. But once she is done with the swing, I recommend moving on to the jumpy to serve the same purpose (a quick morning shower or unloading a few heavy grocery bags). Like the swing, it’s not cheap, so I recommend selling the swing (if you are done reproducing; if not, save it) and putting that money toward the purchase of the jumper.

High Chair

A high chair does not need to be purchased initially. Once Baby is about 3 months old, he can sit in a reclined high chair while you eat, and once he is about 6 months old, you can start offering him food. The benefit to a high chair is that you can wheel it around and feed Baby wherever you want to be. The downside to a high chair is that it takes up a lot of space.

High Chair Cover

If you eat out a lot, a plush, fabric high chair/shopping cart cover can be nice once they are old enough to sit up unassisted.

Booster Seat

Booster seats don’t take up space since they attach to an existing dining room chair. They are a great option if you are trying to save space and eat all your meals at the dining room table.

Whether you choose a high chair or a booster seat, make sure the seat portion is covered with a fabric that can be easily wiped down.

Once you have a toddler, it’s time to ditch the high chair and move to a booster seat. I love our booster seat, which has no buckles, does not attach to the dining chair, and is made out of a foamy material.

Breastfeeding

While the required shopping list for formula-feeding may result in hefty expense and require extensive purchasing, the list for breastfeeding is quite simple: nothing. Your nutritional supply along with the delivery system all comes standard on board the Mother model of humanity. It’s all free, no accessories required. If your budget is tight, you can simply lift your shirt, and you are all set.

Though no upgrades to the standard model are required to facilitate breastfeeding, there are things you can purchase that can help to make your breastfeeding journey easier.

Breast Pads

When your baby breastfeeds, you will experience the letdown, which feels like a tingling rush of milk. The breast that is not being drained by your little one at the moment will leak. You can use disposable nursing pads or reusable ones. Each brand has a different shape, size, and level of absorbency. You should definitely try several types to find the right fit for your needs. Also, keep extras in the diaper bag. You never want to leave a damp pad resting on your nipple. I tried a thin cloth brand once that left me feeling wet, and that was the only time in all my years of breastfeeding that I got mastitis.

Nipple Cream

The best nipple cream is simply your own breastmilk. After each feeding, gently rub some of your breastmilk over your nipple and air dry. If you want more help, you can use coconut oil, pick up a lanolin cream or some Earth Mama, Angel Baby Natural Nipple Butter.

Nursing Bras

I strongly encourage you to invest in quality nursing bras. Your breasts will become a 24/7 milk factory, and the support and comfort of a high-quality nursing bra can feel priceless. It’s like a hug for your hard working boobies. You will need at least two bras that are good for daytime nursing and two for nighttime. They should function well and be comfortable and supportive, Try on a lot. Consider shopping at places beyond the major retailers. Smaller boutiques tend to not only carry more specialized product lines but also have the lactation consultant staff to really assist you in finding a perfect nursing bra for you. I own three of each. Remember that your baby might spit up a lot, sometimes requiring multiple bra changes throughout the day and night.

Clothing

No special clothing is needed to breastfeed a baby. But you will find that you see and experience your clothes with a new perspective as a breastfeeding mom. I like to have a set of camisole tank tops that I can wear under the rest of my shirts that need to be lifted for boob access. That way, I can lift the outer shirt and lower the stretchy neckline of the thin cami and remain fully clothed. Breastfeeding while babywearing gives me a great appreciation for shirts that allow top-down boob access (for example, button front or a stretchable neckline). Some moms really enjoy having a few nursing tank tops, which are tank tops with a nursing bra built in (a breastfeeding version of a bralette tank). With some thought, you can inexpensively adapt your current wardrobe for convenient breastfeeding.

Babywearing Pouch

Babywearing is immensely beneficial regardless of your breastfeeding status, but it is particularly helpful for the breastfeeding mother. [You can read more about this in the Nursing in Public and Babywearing chapters of the Sage Parenting book.] Suffice it to say, my pouch is my one parenting tool I could not live without. If there were ever a zombie apocalypse, I would be grabbing my Toddler Tula so that I could breastfeed while fighting zombies on the run. I prefer a soft wrap style in the early months of breastfeeding like the Baby K’tan or Moby Wrap and a more structured soft carrier like the Ergo Baby as Baby gets bigger. But know that while I have my personal favorites, being a real babywearer does not require any particular brands or threshold of expense. You do not need to back carry your newborn in a woven wrap to be legit. Babywearing is babywearing.

Breastfeeding Pillow

There are many options on the market with varying designs. The style I prefer is a crescent moon shape that sits around your front on your lap. In addition to aiding in comfortable nursing it can also serve other purposes. It makes a great nest for an infant being massaged (lay a receiving blanket over the top and place your baby in the middle with his head on the rise of the pillow) and a nice prop for a tummy time with a better view. Realistically, I probably spend most of my time breastfeeding my baby in a pouch while out of the house or simply with a regular pillow under one arm (laid back nursing position is my favorite). But I do enjoy the comfort of the crescent-shaped nursing pillow in the early days.

Breast Pump

I needed a breast pump with my first nursling because I was in grad school. I knew there would be times that I would be pumping milk for his Daddy, Grandma, or Auntie to feed my hungry, hungry hippo in my absence. I did not own or use one with my second or third babies.

If you plan on returning to work, you can rent a hospital-grade pump or purchase a high quality home pump. If you are not returning to a job that requires physical distance from your baby, I have found no need for a pump at all. Some moms who want to be able to escape for a frequent date night like to have a hand pump available. Depending upon which pump you purchase, you will need to get the corresponding products for the system (e.g., bottles, bags, etc.).

Bottles are only necessary if you have purchased a pump and plan on separating from Baby. I recommend only getting two bottles to start with and see if they work for your baby during your scaffolded transition (start off only leaving your baby with the caregiver for a short period of time and then work your way up). Many parents find they need to try several brands before they find the right design for their baby.

Nursing Cover

I don’t cover while nursing, but if breastfeeding in public would be a deterrent for you, then you can get a nursing cover. They come in all kinds of patterns and colors. Just be prepared for the fact that as your baby gets older she may fight against eating with a sheet over her head (would you want to?). You can also smartly design your wardrobe around convenient and discreet breastfeeding [Read the Nursing in Public chapter of the Sage Parenting book for more on this.] and utilize babywearing (a sling, wrap, or carrier covers plenty).

Bath

Bath Tub

I bathe my baby in my bathtub with me every night. I usually get in and my husband passes me our baby and then I pass him back when we are done. Getting in and out of the slippery tub while holding my wet baby feels a bit unstable for me. You can also lay the towel on the floor just outside of the tub and place your baby on the towel. Get in and lift your knees up. Then you can reach over, pick up your baby, and lay him with his head on your knees, his body on your lap, and as he gets older, his feet up by your chest. This puts you in a great position to scrub his body while bonding and relaxing together in the warm water. When he’s done, I lay him on the towel outside the tub (a bouncer seat works really well too).

The kitchen sink also makes a great baby bathtub and some kitchen utensils and a cup make great tubby toys. You can purchase a bathing hammock to set your baby on an incline in the sink or you can accomplish the same thing with a couple towels. If none of these options work for you, you can get a baby bathtub. It is not a necessity but can be helpful depending on how you and your baby most enjoy getting clean.

Towels

Owning a few baby washcloths can be nice as they can get in all those nooks, crannies, and rolls in ways a big, thick, adult washcloth cannot. I find baby towels to be unnecessary for us. An adult towel does the job just fine.

Soap

Choose your baby’s soap carefully, as the skin of a precious new baby is sensitive. I do my homework and choose soaps that are free of all the irritating chemical additives. Turn the bottle over and you might be surprised what you find on that ingredient list.

Clothes

Warm Seasons/Climates:

Cold Seasons/Climates:

Consider:

  • Comfort: fabric, leg/arm bands, tags
  • Accessibility: ease of changing a diaper and changing clothes
  • Sizing: acquire various sizes—you can have the next size up on hand and you do not know for how long they will be in each size (West was in a 0-3 months for one week)

I am a big fan of leggings. I keep a pair in the diaper bag. It eliminates a lot of the stress of having the perfect outfit for the weather each day. If he is wearing a one-piece and he gets a chill, we put on the leggings. If he gets warm, we remove them. This is especially handy going in and out of buildings. Even my older sons like to wear them as sleeves if they get chilly.

Blankets

You need lots of receiving blankets and a few thick blankets. I always have a flannel receiving blanket in my nursing spot and in the diaper bag. They are great for warmth and spit up, to lay over my arm while he breastfeeds so he doesn’t get sweaty, etc. A million uses—keep them handy.

Safety

When Baby is a newborn, none of these safety measures need to be in place. You can wait to babyproof your house until your baby is around 6 months old. But if you are registering for your gifts, it’s good to include some safety things so you will have them ready to go. I’ve included some basics below that every house needs, regardless of your child’s personality. However, know that there are many more safety items that you end up purchasing as you get to know your little guy and see the hazards in your particular home. [Read more about this in the Making Room for Baby chapter of the Sage Parenting book.]

Outlet Covers

These are a must have. Make sure every outlet is covered; this includes power bars on office floors and the like. A product has been made for every power outlet.

Furniture Tethers

Straps that affix to a piece of furniture and then screw into the wall stud are a good idea for top-heavy furniture like tall bookshelves and vertical dressers, or as your baby likes to call them: ladders.

Cabinet/Drawer Locks

Child lock your medicine cupboard, cleaning supplies, and “sharp” drawer. Rather than child locking every compartment in the house, I prefer to consolidate the few things that are not safe for children to just a few locations that can be locked.

Baby Monitor

This is a must if you are ever planning on being in a different room than your sleeping baby. I don’t own one because my baby always sleeps with us.

Furniture

Crib

If you want a crib [Read my post Cage-Free Baby to see why you might not.] I recommend getting a convertible crib. This way you have a lot of options for sleep arrangements, like the sidecar setup. [Read all about this in the Sage Nighttime Parenting book.] This serves the exact same function as all those next-to-your-bed, early-infant sleep containers except your baby won’t outgrow this bed in a matter of weeks. And when your baby is done using the crib as a crib, you can use it as a toddler bed.

Crib Bedding

You need at least two sheets so that when one gets wet, you have another waiting in the wings. Unfortunately it is not uncommon for your little bundle of joy to soak through several sheets in one night. Ah, the joys of parenting. Aesthetically, you can add things like a bed skirt, but be cautious of adding things to the crib that decrease sleep safety (like a bumper or comforter).

Changing Table

I prefer to use a dresser with a changing pad on top (you can purchase a changing pad and two changing pad covers). It serves all the same functions as a changing table but you can also put clothes in it, and it will last your baby’s entire childhood.

Play Yard

A play yard can be a great baby station in a two-story house. After birth, trekking up and down stairs every time Baby needs a change or a new blanket can be too much. The play yard can be the downstairs changing table and can hold spare supplies like one-pieces and receiving blankets. If you have a single-story house, I find it completely unnecessary.

Rocking Chair

I recommend getting a comfortable rocking chair/glider. By comfortable, I mean the chair needs to have a lot of cushion and accommodate sitting in for hours. You can put the rocking chair in your room, your living room, Baby’s room—anywhere, really. You just need a peaceful place to sit, soothe, and breastfeed your baby. Remember, when you are sitting in this chair you will have just passed a human being through your vagina—it needs to be very comfortable.

Lastly, if you are asking for gifts in preparation for your baby’s arrival, I highly recommend asking for a housecleaning. To be able to let go of the responsibilities of keeping your house in order is invaluable and frees you to focus your attention where it needs to be: on your new baby and your self-care. I also highly recommend asking for a class like Sage Baby [Read the Infant Massage chapter of the Sage Parenting book for more on this.], that helps with bonding, sleeping, and soothing while offering parenting information and the support of a group of other parents. Think outside the box. Newborn photos and Mommy Meals (meals delivered by loved ones during your babymoon) are also great gifts. Sometimes experiences are even more valuable to you and Baby than gear.

If you are looking to pick up your remaining wants, you might consider secondhand. Friends, relatives, resale boutiques, and the internet can all be great sources of baby gear. Especially since a lot of baby gear is used for such a short time, or doesn’t even end up being used at all, much of the stock is in good condition. However, please be cautious of safety standards. Product adjustments are made due to updated safety standards all the time and baby gear is commonly recalled. If a car seat has been in even one small car accident, it is no longer safe to use, but if buying one secondhand, you cannot really know for sure whether or not it has been in an accident. So if acquiring baby gear secondhand, do your homework and be sure it is still safe for use with your precious little one.

As with all challenges along your parenting journey, you must tune into the bond you share with your baby and let your wisdom based on this attachment guide your decisions. You don’t need anything other than your baby. Close your eyes and picture yourself looking into the face of your new little one. Feel the love swell in your heart. Imagine yourself holding, carrying, feeding, kissing, and dressing your new child. That love is all that matters and everything else will fall into place. Happy nesting!

[This post contains links to products I find useful. These are affiliate links, which means if you make a purchase on Amazon using the links, I receive a small fee and you help to keep this blog running. Thank you for the support!]

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