I made my baby registry from looking at all the great things they had out there and then justifying why I needed them all! Such was not the case, and if you want to get your baby’s (and your) true needs met, follow my lead. I’ve already went through the baby stage four times, and each time I’ve realized more and more of what I DON’T need! Baby number 5 will be the baby who has absolutely nothing unnecessary!
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This was a must for our house because of the design. Small quarters mean baby/toddler/kiddo can hear everything they’re missing out on, and we use the sound machine to drown out the noise so baby can concentrate on sleep.
This sound machine is called Hatch Baby. What we like about this one is that we can control it from our phones. So we have it up pretty loud in the beginning, but as the night goes on, we will turn down the sound considerably as well as dim the lamp and not have to worry about waking baby.
We put our babies on a schedule, so we set up specific times for the Hatch Baby to turn on and off. You can also schedule a wake up color and sound for when your baby is out of his/her crib and you want to teach them the appropriate time to get out of bed. Perfect for infancy on up to school aged kids.
***Perfect for travel as well as it keeps your settings the same everywhere you go.
An infant carrier (or what we call a pumpkin seat) is a must, but don’t forget to register for your convertible carseat as well. We have big babies so once we can no longer justify toting around baby in the infant seat, we move directly to the convertible. This particular seat is rated for newborn on up, if you’re the kind to skip the infant seat.
The Diono carseat is a must for several reasons. For one, it’s the safest carseat we could find in our search. It’s steel frame makes for a better seat than any plastic one you can find. We chose this seat specifically so we could fit three carseats across the back seat of our car, and saved ourselves from purchasing another new vehicle before we were ready… we’re the kind to put five kids in a Ford Explorer until we’re ready to upgrade.
***Cars aren’t cheap and we will never buy new because it’s a waste of money, but that’s another post for another day.
I will admit, this isn’t the crib we own. We don’t own it because I didn’t get a say in the crib, and sometimes you get what you get and you don’t throw a fit. Below is a sturdy yet foldable crib.
I believe this crib to be a better option for many reasons. First of all, it’s easy to move from room to room. You can set up baby in your room and when he/she is ready to move to the nursery it isn’t a big production. When brings me to the second reason. Sometimes I need baby to nap someplace away from my other nappers or my wild gang of hooligans and I can easily move the bed to some place quieter.
We’ve always needed a crib from baby number one but not everyone has their children as close together as we do, so this crib is easy to store between kiddos and again, easy to set back up.
** This could potentially save you from needing a playpen. We’ve only ever used the playpen for setting up baby to nap in another room.
If you plan on having more than one child, go ahead and get a double stroller! We went through three strollers until we found the best one! Summer Infant 3D TWO double stroller. Amazon had it, and it’s perfect, but now Amazon doesn’t have it. Boohoo! It seems as though it’s out of stock everywhere! So for now I’m going to give you a close second (but maybe you should go find it used!).
Yes I said a double stroller, and this is a single, but this Britax stroller has add ons you can purchase when you’re ready to add to your crew. I don’t love the way it folds up, but if you have the space it will be perfect for you. The one I love (that isn’t available) folds up just like an umbrella stroller so it takes up very little space in the trunk of a car or wherever you decide to store it.
This is another item I went through multiple times before I found the BEST one. I had three kids in 2.5 years so I needed a lot of room in the diaper bag while having three in diapers simultaneously. Did I mention we cloth diaper? Those suckers are big and I needed a bag to carry A LOT, but the trouble is in finding a bag that’s big, but also easy to get to the things at or near the bottom.
This diaper bag has a wide mouth that stays open for easy access. The bottles are insulated for long trips away from the house. But there’s a secret “door” to the bottom of the bag for easy access to what’s down below! My bag stays organized with all my kids’ things along with my own… You don’t usually find me with a purse, because I’m not looking to be the bag lady.
This is a personal preference, and might also depend on the size of your house, kitchen, or dining room. High Chairs can take up a lot of space, so my suggestion is to get one that folds or stores away conveniently. The other option besides storing it away is to have a seat that sits directly at the table and storage is not necessary because it’s out of the way entirely. Ultimately you need to consider your environment to choose what’s best for your growing family.
Whether you plan to exclusively breastfeed or to formula feed right away, I encourage you to register for a few bottles. Bottles are tricky sometimes to pick out prior to knowing what baby likes best, however we have been very fortunate in our choice of bottles that all four (and praying the fifth will to) took to it without a problem.
My suggestion is to only get a few bottles. We survive with only three. This sort of goes along with our family’s philosophy that less is more. The more bottles we had, the more likely the dishes would pile up, and make things feel overwhelming. With less bottles, we knew we couldn’t go without washing too long, and we generally came up with the routine of washing the bottle right away. Honestly, it’s much easier to clean the bottles fresh instead of waiting for the milk to get old, stinky, and crusty.
Why glass? Because it’s safer for baby, but also because I can throw it in the dishwasher if I have room. Sometimes, being a little lazy is okay, right? Or at least that is what I keep telling myself.
And here’s the best bottle brush: https://amzn.to/2us6dul because it’s perfect for any size bottle opening, it’s durable as it has lasted us over five years, and it’s not colorful and gaudy. The MAIN reason this brush is “the best” is because I don’t get sprayed with water when I’m taking the brush out of the bottle. You wouldn’t think it would matter about which bottle brush you buy, but it does!
Bottle Drying Mat
That green grass drying rack looked so desirable to me, but it was a pain in my booty! It didn’t hold much, and I had other dishes that needed drying… so don’t bother with the cutesy bottle drying rack.
It may not be baby related but you’ll use it for bottles and then some, it’s the perfect tool for our kitchen. The silicone mat is easier to clean than the cloth mats.
Rock N’ Play
This is up for debate as to whether or not this is necessary, so hear my reasoning and then make your best choice.
Again, because we have so many so young, my husband and I needed a place to keep baby up and safely secure from the toddlers. We used this to promote relationships with the kids, because while baby laid in the rock n play, I could teach the little kiddos how to talk to the baby and play with his/her feet. They could safely get close to the baby without my panicking about baby being squished.
It’s also at a a good angle for digestion after baby has eaten. We were fortunate enough not to have spitting up babies, but it was still important for digestion to be at this angle as opposed to lying flat someplace.
This was easy for me to take into the bathroom with me as I showered, or into the kitchen with me as I prepared meals, and so on.
Breast pumps are costly so get one through your insurance if money is tight and no one gets you one for your baby shower. The thing I wish I knew back when I was expecting baby number one almost ALL revolve around breastfeeding and pumping. So pay attention.
I have some mom friends who swear by the Haakaa pump. I’ve been told it will help me in the first few weeks to get the milk flowing. As baby feeds on one breast you suction this one to your opposite breast to produce milk. You’ll learn quickly the more milk your body releases, the more it makes to meet baby’s demand. After #5 is born, I will write a review on this!
You’ll be most comfortable if you don’t have to pump, but most mothers I know just don’t have that luxury. Working moms especially! Here’s the thing though, my first two babies were not gaining weight by breastfeeding and therefore I HAD to pump. It hurt, it drained my supply, and took away most of my time. What I didn’t realize then was I was most likely using the wrong pump! The Spectra is sworn by nearly ALL pumping moms I’ve talked to so heed their advice! If you can afford it, this one will work best, produce more, and in less time!
Here I’ll talk about cloth diapers if you’re interested. If not, you should still register for paper diapers… I suggest registering for size 2, 3, 4, 5… especially if you have the space. It will definitely save you some money later down the road because diapers aren’t cheap.
Diapers really aren’t cheap and if you’re planning on having more than one child, investing in cloth diapers will save you the most amount of money! We are STILL using the diapers from our first kiddo and they’re in excellent shape.
Cloth diapering may seem like a major chore, but it really isn’t. If you’re curious on what it all entails, then check out this blog post: https://stmarthaslens.com/2019/03/11/a-quick-guide-to-cloth-diapering/
You do not need to gather a bunch of baby blankets for your baby… in fact you’ll probably get too many anyway. We typically only used the Muslin blankets.
Why the Muslin blankets? Because they’re versatile! First off they’re breathable which is a great safety feature. We use Muslin blankets for swaddling babies tightly for sleep, but there is so many uses to this blanket. Plenty of moms use it to cover up while nursing in public because they’re large and again breathable. I have a gal pal who uses them for her big kids while at the beach, on the boat, or around the swim pool to keep them cool… she soaks them in water and lays them across her kids when they’re hot. You can also wet the blanket and lay it over the stroller to protect baby from the sun without getting too hot because any air going into the stroller will be cooled off by the water on the blanket. This is an absolute must! But don’t go overboard… you only need a handful or less.
It is nice to sleep well when you can during the baby years, and a baby monitor definitely supports that. We first tried a cheap one and it worked well at first, but then something kept interfering and it would wake us up with this loud screeching sound.
We made the decision to get a new monitor and this time we were going to try video. Why? Because there were times when we could hear our baby was fussing but when we walked in we noticed they were nearly asleep, but opening the door had woken them up. Then there were times when the toddler was talking and we assumed they were laying down but in fact they were sitting or standing. The video helps you make better decisions for your child and your peace of mind.
Why am I suggesting two camera’s because if you’re going to have more than one child you will probably need this. We still use the video monitor to make sure the 2 and the 3 year olds are staying in bed and not goofing off. The less times we go in the kids’ bedrooms while they’re preparing for sleep the better. So if you’re registering for an item, it’s best to get something you can use long-term.
The Things You Don’t Need
You DO NOT need a baby tub!
Put a typical towel down in the sink or in the bath tub.
Baby robes and hooded towels
Jump-a-roo! (We were told it was hindering our child’s development.)
Any sort of baby shoes… until baby is starting to stand up.
Bumbo! (They’re actually not great for baby’s development)