Before I created our baby registry, I researched. I googled. I asked. At times, it felt like I prepared more for our baby registry than I had for the SATs. It was overwhelming. Everything seemed both necessary and unnecessary to this rookie mom to be.
The idea of baby supplies becoming decorations in our home was something I swore would never happen. If I could sum up my thoughts on baby items in a couple quotes it would be less is more, multi-purpose and foldable.
Less is more: babies, especially newborns, grow so quickly which means they not only grow out of their clothes quickly, they also grow out of all the other items you buy for them. My son at 4 months was already sick of being strapped in to a bouncer and preferred scooting around on the floor.
Multi-purpose: More and more baby items nowadays solve for more than one need. Many pack & plays have bassinets on top. Jumpers transition in to toddler tables. Carriers hold baby’s newborn to 1 years old.
Foldable: That bouncer that my son grew out of at 4 months old now needed to be stored in the closet for our next child. I was grinning ear to ear as I folded it up and stored neatly in our closet, barely taking up any space. Same goes for the bathtub we purchased. It easily folds up and fits into the cabinet under the sink in between baths.
Given my baby registry words to live by, there were quite a few items that I chose not to register for. Now what to buy and what not to buy seems to be a contentious topic. What one person wishes they hadn’t bought is another persons saving grace. So take this list with a grain of salt. Ask your friends. Do your research. Just don’t overbuy 🙂 .
Here’s the items I did NOT register for
(OR only registered for very few)
1 Blankets // Yes, a baby needs blankets. But people WILL get you blankets whether you register for them or not. I’m not sure what it is about baby blankets, but people love to buy them! So don’t worry about registering for them. You’ll still get them. Having a large supply of blankets could sound nice in theory, but quickly become unnecessary.
2 Baby Clothes // Now popular opinion is that girls’ clothes are just so much more fun to buy than boys. But regardless of the gender, friends and family will buy you clothes! Especially smaller sizes. So if you do register for clothing, opt for outfits that are at least 3 month size.
3 Sound Machine // Now some babies love these and can only fall asleep listening to the soothing sound a running water. I took a chance that Delcan wouldn’t be one of those kids. But better safe than sorry, I downloaded the app Craddle on both my iphone and ipad. There’s many sound machine type apps, like Craddle, to choose from. I was so glad I went this route. I had a portable sound machine if I was in a jam, but had one less thing to plug in to the nursery.
4 Wipe Warmer // I’ve heard mixed opinions on the wipe warmer. On one side, these can be a lifesaver during middle of the night diaper changes to prevent your little one from noticing their diaper is getting changed. On the other hand, will they expect a warm wipe EVERY time? I didn’t want to ANOTHER thing that I needed to have plugged in, so we skipped this. And I’ve got a kid who LOVES his diaper changed. With a cold wipe.
5 Baby Mittens // These prevent little ones from scratching their faces. I can attest that clipping the nails of a newborn is not only a little scary, but can easily be forgotten (we only attempted it when Declan was napping). These mittens can be pricey and realistically only used for a little while. A cheap substitute? Baby socks! I’ve also heard that covering babies’ hands isn’t great for their development. I’m absolutely no expert in that area, but we skipped these regardless.
6 Diaper Cream Brush // For me, this was another ‘in theory this is brilliant’, but in practice this totally got forgotten. Its purpose is to allow parents to apply diaper rash cream without getting it all over their hands. In reality I forgot to use it every time. Plus, I found it to be quicker to just use my hands and welll…. wipe them on my pants. #welcometoparenthood
7 Wet Dry Bag // So yes, these are probably super handy and yes, maybe I’ll buy one in the future. But for me, there’s so many other things I wanted to buy. So I used a large ziplock bag to store in my diaper bag instead.
8 Lots of Towels // Baby towels are soooo cute, so why wouldn’t you want lots? Between needing to do laundry often and the fact that we only bathed Declan once a week or so for the first couple month, we barely needed the TWO towel that we had.
9 Books // Yes, your child needs books. But similar to blankets, you WILL receive books whether you register for them or not. Now unlike blankets, I don’t believe in the concept of too many books. But you will likely receive lots of books from friends and family.
10 Merlin Suit & Larger Swaddles // Yes, swaddles can be your best friend in getting your little one to sleep at night. But and it’s a big but …. you don’t know when your child will stop using them. Once your kiddo starts rolling over, most swaddles and Merlin Suits can’t be used anymore (I do believe there’s special ones for older kids who roll). I had purchased a supply of 3-6 month swaddles and sure enough, Declan started rolling over at 3 months.
11 Newborn Shoes // Cute? Yes. Practical? Never. Deep down you know I’m right.
12 Diaper Changing Table // Lots of dressers nowaways have a diaper changing attachment that can be placed on them. Those are awesome. But a ‘this is specifically a diaper changing table’ has a VERY specific purpose and can only be used as such. Save some room in the nursery and use a dresser with a changing table on top!
13 Car Seat Canopy // this is another one of those things that looks brilliant. Anything that keeps a baby from waking up is typically top of my list. Joe & I took a safety class prior to Declan’s birth. We got all crazy on safety related topics from everything we learned from the class (mind you, we still had no idea how to change a diaper). Our instructor wasn’t a fan of these or any extra items in the back seat of the car. Plus, it just seemed like a muslin blanket (because remember, you’ll get lots of these!) would do the trick when your little one is in the stroller.
14 Back Seat Car Mirror // I was really surprised to hear our safety class instructor tell us these are a big no no. What?!?! What are you supposed to do if your kid is crying while driving? She then asked me specifically what I was planning on doing when I look through my mirror to see my newborn crying while driving on the highway. Hmmm. Ok good point. In a nutshell, the argument is that these mirrors are a huge distraction for the driver, which in turn is a HUGE safety concern.
15 Newborn Size Diapers // While you may need these, I found it wasn’t worth registering for something that I wasn’t pretty darn sure I was going to use. No one knows exactly what size your baby will be when they’re born or exactly how quickly they’ll grow during their first month.
16 Baby Detergent // The price of baby specific detergent just blows my mind. Also, during the first couple months, life is crazy. Really crazy. The last thing I wanted to do was sort Declan’s laundry from ours. I was lucky to find time to do ANY laundry. We chose to wash ALL our clothes with perfume and dye free detergent. Problem solved.
17 Bassinet // On many baby lists, this would be considered an essential. But to provide another prospective, hear me out: Bassinets have an extremely short lifespan as babies will outgrow it quickly. Then you’re stuck finding storage space for it until the next baby comes along. Many bassinets aren’t as collapsible as you’d like so storage can be frustrating. Instead we opted to get a pack & play that has a bassinet attachment on top.
18 Infant Chairs // These are super cute and seem like such a reasonable thing to buy. Here’s the problem: there’s a super small window of time where babies actually use these. Now I fully admit, we own one. But I purchased it use from a local moms group for $10. I use it specifically to feed him his once a day couple scoops of pureed veggies for maybe 5 minutes a day. There’s also research that these chairs aren’t great for babies’ hip development. Again, no expert on that. But I wouldn’t buy one full price.
19 Shopping Cart Cover // So yes, grocery carts are probably completely disgusting and germ ridden. So these covers seem like a reasonable solution. The problem is, many of them don’t fit ALL grocery carts. Ugh. A diaper wipe and some blankets will do the job just as good (if not better).
20 Bottle Sterilizers // All the ones I found were big and bulky. Since they’re used often, it’s likely not an item that you’d want to take in and out of storage regularly. Instead, we found that simply boiling a large pot of water was actually quicker than using a bottle sterilizer. Plus as time went on, we sterilized our bottles less and less.
There it is. My ‘favorite’ items to NOT buy. Just remember, everyone is different. Every baby is different. But I do believe it’s worth it to hear from moms what they did NOT use.
Laura @ Mommy Dearest says
There is a very large age gap between my oldest and youngest. To help our oldest adjust we took him to register for baby items. I already had a really great idea in my head of what I needed as I remembered the things I didn’t use with my first. We had to really go through the list because our trigger happy child went and scanned everything under the sun. We still ended up with a few things that really didn’t get used but you are so right about the baby blankets. I got so many.