Must Have Baby Gear
We have recently moved across the country. During our move Ryan and I agreed to make a concerted effort to de-junk our lives upon arrival of our stuff in our new home. It has really been a positive move for us. We have sold quite a bit and given away even more.
However, my husband and I often find ourselves at odds about the baby gear. I say we should keep much of it – his opinion is to junk it all. Since we are expecting our 7th baby in January there are things we agreed upon keeping. And, with the wise council of my husband there are many things I have decided aren’t really necessary and just create more clutter to straighten up. I don’t want to spend my entire life tidying up my home so I have decided to make a list of the most necessary of baby items for our family and rid myself of the excess ‘stuff’ I have accumulated.
After 7 kids you would think this list would have grown but it has actually gotten smaller and smaller. I used ShopWiki.com’s baby and toddler product search to do a little research on price and availability. They are jam packed with all kinds of goodies from tons of different retailers across the web – stuff we don’t need, sure, but much of it is useful and quite beneficial to the new or expecting mama.
- A good car seat. The one we used for Sam was the Baby Trend Flex-Loc Infant Car seat. We liked this one because of the triangle handle, the ease of adjustment, and how thin it was. In a car with 3 other car seats it was necessary that this additional car seat fit well and still be strapped in properly.
- A crib – newer is better than older. Over time baby cribs have become more and more child-safe. The importance of child safety while they are alone at night does not need elaborating. You may not need to buy new but you may not want to use the same crib you used as a baby. Look into it if you have a question about the safety of your particular crib.
- A co-sleeper. I like to have my babies close to me for the first 4 to 6 months and we don’t even set up the crib until Baby is ready to use it. I like the mini co-sleeper by Arm’s Reach. Although we could never afford the $130 item new we did find one for $30 used and in fabulous condition in a community ad.
- A travel swing. We don’t use the swing constantly, preferring to hold Baby. However, we have found the travel swing, similar to this one to be a great assistance when cooking dinner or tidying up around the house. We prefer the travel swing because they work just as well but take up much less room than your massive, bulky average sized swing. Plus, they take up almost no room when stored and because it is a travel swing it is easy to cart around with you to friend’s and family’s homes.
- A baby carrier like the ERGO. I love my ERGO because it is the only carrier I have ever tried that doesn’t give me a neck or back ache and it allows Baby to sit in a proper seated position instead of being hung by their crotch. But they are not cheap. There are plenty of similar soft structured baby carriers out there that are very similar to the ERGO but don’t have the high price tag.
- A high quality breast pump. I love my Pump In Style Professional but it finally broke with baby number 6. I will be purchasing a new one for this baby – yes, they are expensive but totally worth it in my opinion. I have tried the cheaper types and have never been happy with them. If you plan to nurse at all and have contemplated getting a pump I highly recommend investing in a top of the line brand.
- A blanket with a silky edge. This can be a small security blanket or a normal sized baby blanket. Babies love the silky edge that many blankets have and it is likely to become a security blanket in the end.
Toys. Well, I’ll have to be honest with you. Besides a good teething ring most baby toys are just a colorful waste of money. We have had some of the same toys for the last 4 or 5 babies and they have hardly been used at all. A crinkly toy and maybe a toy with a rattle inside are perfect but we have learned that it is not necessary at all to have a ton of baby toys waiting for our baby to be ready to play.
Of course, your needs are likely to be at least a little bit different than ours and I am sure I have left out an item or two that we would consider important, and maybe added some in that you may feel to be a waste of money. However, the list I created above states the bulk of what we view as important baby needs.
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