• J Mess


When your younger friends start having babies and need advice from their elders.

I was in Buy Buy Baby the other day (surprise, surprise), when 2 women approached me and asked if I went there often. Sadly they weren’t attempting to pick me up, instead they were searching for a baby-food maker off a registry and weren’t sure if they were in the correct area of the store. At the exact same time, my friend was texting me and requesting a blog post about registry essentials because she was feeling overwhelmed and didn’t know where to start. I remember those days like it was yesterday. Because it was yesterday. And today. And everyday. Feeling overwhelmed is the new status quo when you're a mom. Luckily for everyone, I go to Buy Buy Baby quite often, found that baby-food maker eventually (long-story), and have some suggestions for what you need to put on your registry. I wonder if Buy Buy Baby is hiring?

Have at home for when baby comes home

Baby cleaning/toiletries

· Diapers

· Diaper cream—I liked Balmex, but there are tons of brands and they all do the same thing. See this post for poop items you need.

· Aquafor—Get the tubs for the changing table and the travel tubes for the diaper bag. My friend told me about this trick she used, put on Aquafor first and then Balmex, and avoid diaper rash.

It works.

· Wipes—I wipe everything I don’t Purell.

· Purell

· Bathtub—my baby nurse was not pleased with the original tub I had registered for, and suggested one like this. At first I was insulted and self-conscious that I had picked something deemed to be bad, however once I relented, it was clear this was a way better tub.

· Soap—we were told by a doctor to use regular old Dove sensitive bar soap.

Baby clothing/accessories

· Burp cloths

· Wash cloths

· Towels

· Bibs—cotton and these for when they start eating food. They are a cinch to clean.

· Clothing/socks/hats—personally I think shoes are unnecessary at this age.

· Pajamas—which are apparently not the same as clothing. I have an upcoming post on this.

· Changing pad cover—get 2 so when 1 is in the wash, you have a backup.

· Boppy—I had both but the lounger is a must.

· Diaper bag—see this post for diaper bag essentials.

· Muslin blankets/swaddles—my son didn’t like to be swaddled with these but they are a workhorse in the diaper bag (emergency burp cloth, feeding cover, blanket, etc) and are lightweight enough to not be a burden.


· Car seat/stroller—the systems are great because you can transport the car seat from the car to the stroller without taking the baby out. But some people skip this and go straight into a convertible rear-facing car seat, and get a separate stroller.

· Stroller organizer—if your chosen stroller does not have a “mom tray," you'll want somewhere to put your coffee.

· Stroller muff—loved this but took it off when we started leaving the stroller at daycare. Because I'm sure the moms at the JCC definitely want to steal my stuff.

· BundleMe—best. thing. ever. Don't underestimate how toasty this thing keeps your baby.

· Crib/furniture/bedding/changing pad/waterproof mattress pad

· Baby monitor

· Breastfeeding?—see this post for breastfeeding essentials and bottle cleaning essentials.

· Bottles—personal preference. I liked the Phillips Avent system because I found them easy to clean, not too many parts, and the wide nipple helped my son transition back and forth from breastfeeding to bottle feeding. I was nervous about the plastic becoming gross over time and originally bought the glass ones, but after almost a year, they still look brand new.

· Rock n play—controversial because babies are supposed to sleep flat, but we loved it. Used this when we traveled, otherwise get a pack n play instead. Pack n play has a longer usage. Or get both. Why not have more stuff?

· Swing—this was baby crack to my child. I don't know what I would have done without it.


· Pacifiers—my son is addicted. Some kids love them, some hate them.

· Books

· Activity mat

· Teethersthis is my personal favorite. Giraffe, you’re going down! C-A-T!

· Rattles

· Foam floor tiles—must have for tummy time if you have wood floors.

· Bath toys—and stuff for you, like a mat for your poor knees.

· Stroller toy—something that wraps around the bar or plays music.

Have for later

· High chair

· Travel booster—I have 3 of these, but only use 2. This seat was great for taking to friend’s houses for dinner or when my son was too small for high chairs in restaurants.

And this seat is great for the beach or backyard.

· Food feeding stuff—see this post.

· Playard—aka baby jail.

· Jumper

· Baby carrier—even if you don't think you'll be one of those people who wears your kid, it's good to have for those places you can't take a stroller. Trust me.

· Umbrella stroller—we just got one of these after we went to a sporting event and couldn't bring our giant stroller, and the baby got really overheated in the baby carrier. Now we only want to use this stroller everyday because it's so much more lightweight.

· High chair/shopping cart cover

Expert tip: Join local Facebook mom groups, swap and sell groups, and freecycle groups. People are always looking to get rid of all of this baby stuff they don't need anymore and you can be the beneficiary of some of it cheap or at no cost! I got my son's baby swing for free and yesterday got him the Busy Zoo similar to this one for $15.

Also check out other people's registries to see what they listed! Mine is probably still available!

There's no way I covered everything you'll need. Definitely forgot 5 or 500 additional things you'll have to buy. Have fun having no money...

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