Which Baby Products are a Waste of Money?

by Xin Lu on 15 July 2009 76 comments
Photo: FAT

My husband and I are expecting a little baby boy this Halloween.  Right now I am in the process of researching which baby products are necessary and which are a waste of money.  Here is a list of things that I would not be putting on my shopping list.

1. Too many tiny baby clothes  - Baby clothes are awfully cute, but babies grow out of them very quickly.  I have learned from a few friends that their babies were given so many onesies that some of them where not even worn before the baby got too big.  I think a few outfits of each size would be enough.

2. Baby shoes - These are also very cute, but the baby is not going to be walking for about a year so they are not practical at all.  These can also be quite expensive and I think it is better to save the money in the baby's college fund.

3. "Educational" DVDs for babies - The American Academy of Pediatrics actually recommends that babies under two should not watch TV.  I have seen some of the popular Baby Einstein videos and I think that they make very little sense and their educational value is somewhat questionable.  I could probably put on a better puppet show for my baby with a couple socks and some colorful construction paper.

4. Changing table - I do not really understand the purpose of buying another table just for changing.  I see my friends change their kids on the floor, bed, or couch.  They put down a little blanket or mat  and change their kids very quickly.

5. Wipe warmer - I saw this product on  the Babies R Us website and I thought it was funny that such a thing exists.  Is it really bad to wipe a baby's bottom with a room temperature wipe? I certainly do not warm my toilet paper, and I am fine.

6. Nursery decoration - I have seen some very expensive designer mobiles for sale online.  I think these things are actually a hinderance if you hang them above a crib.  We are also keeping the baby in our room so we will not be doing any wallpapering or painting since the baby will not care about the decor anyway.

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7. Swing - Most of the swings I have seen are quite small so I think the baby will grow out of it very quickly.  It also takes up a lot of space and can be expensive.  Other moms have also told me that some of their babies do not like swings. 

8. WhyCry Baby Crying Analyzer - This is a fancy baby monitor that supposedly analyzes if your baby is hungry, bored, annoyed, tired, or stressed.  This is really another product that made me chuckle a bit.  Babies seem to usually cry due to hunger or discomfort so if this analyzer just displays "hungry" all the time it would be correct for a good percentage of time.

9. Diaper Genie - Some people swear by this product which is a plastic container that compacts diapers and seals them in.  It seems like it would be much more economical to just walk the dirty diaper to the outside trashcan and dump it there.

I am sure there are many more frivolous products for babies.  Carrie (who just had a baby boy a few days ago!) wrote up a great list of baby registry tips. Right now my husband and I are really trying to keep things down to the basics, and this baby basics list from Consumer Reports is very good.   Even with this list it is quite overwhelming to step into a store like Babies R Us and seeing the plethora of products there are.  Even the basics have huge variances in prices.  In the end I think babies definitely need love and care more than things. 

What baby products have you found to be completely unnecessary? Which baby related purchase did you regret the most?  
 

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Guest's picture
Hillary

I agree with you on most of these items, but it's all opinion born of experience. For example, I agree that baby can be changed on the floor, but since we have a 80# yellow lab who likes the smell of poo, it's easier to change the baby on a changing table (that I found for FREE out on the curb!) than to lock the dog up everytime I need to change baby's butt. And on of the items I would add to the 'don't need' list is a highchair. By the time baby is ready to eat solids (4-6months), he or she can sit in a $20 toddler booster chair with a seatbelt and tray. That's what we did with our daughter. Saved us $100 and a lot of space!

As for the swing, our baby loved the swing from day one and it's been a source of hours of entertainment and sanity-savings for us. She's a year old and still sits in it every morning while her dad showers.

It's all experience. Trial and error. Good luck to you and your husband!

Guest's picture
Megeelee

I disagree about the wipes warmer. My baby wailed when we changed her diapers before we used the warmer. Splash your rear with room temperature water - feels pretty chilly on that very sensitive skin. It's about getting the right one though, you want the Munchkin brand. The others require you to put a moistened pad in the bottom. Lots of maintenance and if that pad dries out you scorch the wipes.

Guest's picture
Guest

I agree that the baby swing is not a waste for everyone. I loved the swing for my children and grandchildren.

Guest's picture
Allison

totally trial and error. With my 1st, my dad got me a very nice high chair, but remember telling my husband "this is nice for her, but a comfy booster would have done just as well, With less to clean.

Guest's picture
Jen M

I agree with Hillary's comment about the swing. Both of my kids loved them for over a year and I got mine at a yard sale for about $5. Someone actually offered to donate one to me right after I bought the yard sale one! Also, while I agree kids shouldn't watch regular TV in general... Baby Einstein videos are quiet, colorful and really hold the attention of a baby/toddler for when you need a bit of a break. (and you'll need it!) Another good yard sale or Craigslist find.

We never bought a crib for either baby, but did the "family bed" thing and then moved the kids into a toddler bed in the same room, then eventually their own bed in their own room. We borrowed a cradle for our first for a few months, but weren't really using it. Good luck!

Guest's picture
Phil H

Hi Xin,

Congrats and good luck with the pregnancy! I have a few suggestions on your list. Like commenters #1 and #2 I agree that a swing is a good purchase especially when you use Craigslist. I have seen lots of lightly used swings selling for less than 50% retail. Your baby might not like it but if he/she does then it can be a sanity saver as it will buy you precious free minutes, calm a fussy baby, or even help put the baby to sleep.

We didn't buy a changing table either. Instead we bought one of those big plastic changing pads and strapped it to an existing sofa table. This gets the baby up to our level and we avoid having to crouch/kneel/squat to change diapers.

The Diaper Genie is a bad idea because you have to buy their expensive refills for it to work. Consider getting a Diaper Champ which uses regular grocery bags. It may not seem like a lot of trouble to dump the diaper outside but you are exhausted from lack of sleep and overwork, you will appreciate anything that saves you time.

Guest's picture
Jana

I've been known to proclaim that new babies need nothing more than diapers, burp rags (aka cloth diapers) and blankets, as long as the blankets are the stretchy waffle-weave type that can be used to swaddle the wee dear. Swaddling saved my life. Seriously, look into it.

If you're going to be using cloth diapers, then a Genie/Champ/whatever isn't going to help you anyway. But if you're using disposables, you might change your mind. Or not. But maybe, especially when the babe starts solids...ew, boy.

And the wipe warmer may seem really, really crazy, but some babies scream bloody murder when anything cooler than body temp touches their body. Sure, we do fine with toilet paper, but we're not fresh-from-the-womb infants, either. I think warm wet washcloths are a better choice anyway.

I didn't buy a changing table for my son until he was 9 months old. We went with the floor/bed route until I realized that I had another possibly 2 years of diaper changing and I was already really tired of bending over. The changing table is just the right height, and I couldn't believe that I'd spent a whole 9 months without one. That's just me, though.

I'd say start with the minimum, and it sounds like that is your plan. Then, if (OK, when) you run into a dilemma, let your friends with kids know--they've either got a solution that they'll lend you or they know someone who does.

Good luck, and congratulations!

Guest's picture
Cheryl

I have to disagree on the changing table and possibly the swing. You're going to be changing the kid for about 3 years, several times a day. And you might use it for more than one kid. The table will save your back, is easy to clean, and also provides a place to store your diapers, wipes, etc. All those blankets you put down, etc. will end up with poo all over them, making more laundry, which will cost you more time and money. Look for a used one if you want to save money--a lot of people are even willing to give them away.

The swing thing depends on the kid. For some, it's a great way (sometimes the only way) to get them to sleep or to keep them happy for a while. And there are babies who don't like them at all.

Guest's picture
Cheryl

BTW--I SO agree with Hillary on the high chair. We had one, but rarely used it. We used the booster seat with removable tray, strapped to a regular chair. When your child is ready to sit at the table, you continue to use the seat without the tray.

Guest's picture
Carrie

Did you see my registering guide that just went up on Parenting Squad? Most of my thots on essential vs nonessential are on there. But one thing on your list that i would consider essential is a swing. Swings are for soothing and while it would be nice if there were someone there to rock your baby every time he needs it, sometimes you need to make dinner or go pee. Trust me -- I thought I didn't need a swing when we had my first, and now that we just had our third, I have borrowed two extras in addition to the portable one we eventually bought with the first.

The great thing about baby gear is that 1) people will give it to you and 2) you can get what you don't receive very cheaply second hand. In your area, you've gotta hit the Mother of Twins Sale in GG Park this fall.

Guest's picture
Heidi

Holy wow, did we ever use our swing. We picked it up used on Craigslist for $20, maybe, used it for 2 solid years with back-to-back babies, and then sold it on CL for $20. Worth every cent, even if we had paid $100 new and not resold. It saved my sanity more than once.

Same goes for the changing table. Sure, you CAN change your kid anywhere, and sometimes you probably will. But changing tables can be a big back saver, and it's also really nice to have all your diapering/cleaning/what-have-yous all in one spot that's easy to get to. I paid $17 brand new for mine on clearance, and we used it as a changing table/shelving unit for almost 3 years straight before giving it away.

Guest's picture
Jan

A changing table will save your back!

Guest's picture
kate

With 4 children we used never used a changing table. I borrowed a swing from a friend for the 3rd child so she wouldn't get kicked in the head by her older siblings while I showered, but she hated it. i think a swing is one of those things you can pick up after the baby is born, if you have a fussy one and want to try it. Definitely go used.

Guest's picture
marie

For #8; does that really exist? I thought it was only on The Simpsons!!

Guest's picture
Andie

It's a lot of trial and error like someone said. Congrats on your pregnancy. I have a three month old and we live in a 2BR apartment in LA and we're going to be moving in the next 6 months, so we wanted minimal gear.

For the first two months, we changed our baby on the coffee table because I was nursing her on the couch and it seemed like that's where we were all the time. Now that she nurses a bit less frequently and my mother is no longer living with us, we change her on the bathroom counter. You'll figure out what works for you.

Co-sleeping didn't work for us because my husband is a light sleeper, but we got a pack n play with a bassinet. So far this has worked, although until this week when she has become more mobile, any clean, clear flat space would do as well.

What I don't have that I wish I had was a car seat that would sit on top of grocery carts. The baby can't sit up to ride in the kid compartment of the grocery cart yet. I shop very efficiently, so it feels like a waste of time to get her settled in a sling. What I end up doing is pushing her in her stroller with one arm and holding a basket in the other--awkward.

Someone gave us a baby tub, but it is backbreaking to use in our regular tub, and our kitchen sink spout doesn't have the height to clear the side of the baby tub. For now, I've been washing her in the bathroom sink. She'll be getting too big for that soon.

But the biggest help has been having friends who have infants a bit older than her. They've lent us more stuff than we can use. The most used thing right now is a "bouncy seat" (I don't know what it is really.) But unless you plan on wearing your child constantly, something like a swing or a seat where the child can be safely left for a bit is very helpful.

There's a book called Parenting, Inc. which I highly recommend just to remind oneself that all this baby stuff is being ridiculously marketed to worried parents the way wedding must-haves are marketed to brides.

Oh yea. After you have the kid and are thinking about making a purchase--hold off for a few days. I find that my baby changes many preferences every 3-7 days. Some stick around, but some don't.

Best wishes, it'll all work out.

Guest's picture
Eve D.

Something that you not only don't need, but will drive you crazy: any of the myriad of baby/toddler products that make electronic noises (beeping, songs, animal noises, repetitive phrases, announcing letters of the alphabet). Educational or not, these things are the inventions of satan. Plus, they cost money. Make sure relatives know such actively useless gifts are discouraged!

Another big waste of money for us: a nice crib. As the baby also slept in our room... for years, as it turned out.

You do need quite a few clothes for your baby, given that they will throw up and poop all over half a dozen outfits a day, for a while. The key is to get them in bigger sizes so they will last a few months. 6-12 mos. is good instead of newborn.

Guest's picture
Momma

I'd get a pad for changing at least. My guess is that Dad or Grandpa or other males will not be willing to change diapers on the floor.

As for swings, if I could do it over again I would buy one of those deluxe papasan swings for $100+. I had a used cheap swing that my baby hated.

I've never had a special diaper pail. But it'll stink if I don't take the trash out every few days.

Here's another thing that's can be totally useless: burp pads and receiving blankets. I'd wait to see if you have a puker before getting a whole bunch.

Guest's picture
Jasi

crib was a waste for co-sleeping parents. lol

everything was.

we should have gotten only: travel system, sling, onesies, dipes/wipes and bought the rest as we went.

Guest's picture
Francie

Congrats!

Totally agree to get the changing table. It will save your back. But don't buy the little changing table pad covers. Use pillowcases. Easy to pull off when it's messy, and believe me, you will see messes beyond your dreams.

Guest's picture
Steph

Even the most pared-down "must-have" list is going to recommend too much, as far as I'm concerned. My daughter is two now, and I wish we'd taken back/not bought 90% of the stuff we got for her before she was born and 75% of the "must-haves" we accumulated during her first year. I guess it's a rite of passage for first-time parents to over-equip in these modern times. We did love the swing, though - the Papasan one - it was worth every single penny. The $5 yard-sale bouncy seat was also a life-saver. And you are right about #3; TV is not recommended for babies.

I agree with comment #15 about the burp cloths and receiving blankets. I found burp cloths to be pretty much completely useless - half the time, the fabric they're made from (fleece, designer quilting cottons, jersey, and even the good 'ol gauze) can't absorb quick enough, so you're holding this cloth out while baby puke runs down it and onto your pants anyway. Plus, it's one more thing to carry around/have around the house and you will be up to your eyeballs in junk anyway. Unless you've got a heavy-duty puke machine, the cheapie 10-pk of baby washcloths will do just fine. The "baby" part does matter on the washcloths, though; the adult terry ones are too big to get in all babies' little folds and crevices. People looooove to give blankets, receiving or otherwise, but you really only need a couple. That goes for pretty much everything, actually. And people will give you clothes. Clothes and clothes and CLOTHES. We begged people not to give us clothes, begged and pleaded and explicitly said "We're all set on clothes, thanks anyway..." and still wound up with SIX jumbo plastic Rubbermaid tubs full - just in 0-12m sizes. Do not listen to them when they say "oh, you'll go through so many changes of clothes..." It's just not true - unless they're a hardcore barfer (see above) or you're in the wrong size diaper and having blowouts every time they poop, babies don't get very dirty most of the time.

Guest's picture
Jen

while I agree with you on the other stuff for being non essential, I think a swing is worth the investment. I got one for my baby shower and boy were we grateful. My daughter used it daily for a whole year. It was the only thing that kept her perfectly happy when I was busy doing other things (taking a shower or making dinner). After she outgrew her swing, I ended up giving it to a friend who used it with her 2 kids. By the way, we did not get a changing table, but frankly changing my daughter on the floor wasn't exactly appealing to me either. We ended up clearing a space on the bathroom counter and used that instead. It's free and it worked great for us.

Guest's picture

My kids would ONLY sleep in a swing for the first 6-9 months, no lie. Well worth the $. Also I would agree with the others and buy a cheap changing pad that will strap on a dresser or whatever. Well worth it to have a space where all the diapers, wipes, clothes are. Imagine you are changing a diaper at 2 am after being up for the last 20 hours straight. You will need a spot you can just stagger over to.
Also I highly recommend the Medela microwave steam bags ($6 for 4) Each last for 20+ uses and you can steam clean just about anything: bottles, nipples, pacifiers, breast pump parts. Well worth it!

Guest's picture
Courtney

I thought a lot of these things were ridiculous until I'd lost my mind with no sleep.

I ended up paying $20 for a wipe warmer, and it was totally worth it. She cried every time we changed her with a cold wipe until it got about 80F outside. Crying baby = bad news for mother.

Diaper Genie - itty-bitty disposable baby diapers are indeed small, but if you change them 12 times a day (no lie!) they add up. I didn't think they were stinky, but others did. My daughter is 19 months now, and it still doesn't bug me, but my husband tries really hard not to puke every time he changes a diaper, and the smell of one that has been sitting around permeates the room. Some sort of thing that cuts off smell is good.

Too many tiny baby clothes - I didn't actually have to buy any clothes for my daughter for the first year, because people gave me so many. I never regretted having too many, even if she didn't wear them all, because all my daughter's clothes can fit in one good sized tote. Since they're so small to begin with, it's still a lot of clothes - and I still run out of clean clothes for her.

But, our house is cold (or hot) and she gets dirty a lot. In the winter, she wore a onesie, a knit playsuit, a fleece playsuit, slippers, and sometimes a sweatshirt and a hat. That's a lot of clothes to change a minimum of 2 or 3 times a day!

What I found absolutely essential?

Something to put her toys in, to keep them out of the way and off the floor.
Multiple containers of wipes, diaper cream, and diapers.
water-proof pads
gentle soap (see EWG.com for safe baby soaps)

Guest's picture

We had triplets on May 28th. A girl and two boys. They are still in the hospital so I haven't much experience in what works and what doesn't. Someone bought us little mesh bags to put fruit in and says their child loves to suck the fruit juice...ok, I guess. I also understand that they make little doodle covers for boys to cover their privates so they don't spray everywhere when you change them. I would have to say that this would definitely be one of those "do without" products. Use a cloth instead. That I have learned at the hospital as they will let us change their diapers.

Guest's picture
Alexis

My only rule is don't buy it till you need it. Also, you might want to rethink "a few outfits in each size". When my son was very young he had very explosive poo and he could go through up to 5 outfits a day, so, it all depends on how often you feel like doing laundry. Good luck!

Guest's picture
spaces

Congrats on the baby! Now, brace yourself for the avalanche of advice you appear to have invited.

You don't need a bottle warmer, either. All they do is teach your child to only take a warm bottle. IMO better to have baby be flexible.

You don't need a "tummy time mat" or some $80 BS that is essentially a waterproof blanket. The cheap workaround is a waterproof pad designed to protect a crib mattress, with a cotton blanket on top.

The first time I went into babies-r-badspellers to register I had to leave. It was too much, and I had no idea what I needed. I adopted the great-grandmother-rule then: If my great-grandmother didn't have it, then I should think thrice as to whether I wanted it.

Put on your list: Onesies extenders. If you're a runner or plan to walk / be outdoors much, a good jogging stroller (better than BRU carries). A quality crib mattress is another thing you want, one that will last through the toddler bed.

You can get practically everything baby oriented on craigslist. Usually for half of BRU price or less.

My daughter (now 4.5 months) HATES having stuff pulled over her head. Clothing that snaps or zips up the side is a big hit around here. She also hated the swing. A favored toy is an arch that goes over her and has toys hanging down that she bats at, grabs, etc. I think it's called a play gym. Another favorite of hers has been a mobile. Her #1 toy, tho, is a napkin with a chili pepper print that is black, red, green and white. At varying stages, she looks at it, reaches for it, bats at it, and stuffs it in her mouth. Although the napkin has recent competition from a food wrapper ...

I mostly change my daughter on my bed or in her crib. No pad, no special cover, she's only peed on me once during a change and I don't think it would happen again. And I don't wipe her after every pee diaper. IMO it's not necessary and would just dry out her skin.

We use cloth diapers (and cloth wipes). My spouse and I made the cloth diaper choice because we feel it is both the frugal and green choice, and because we believe it is healthier for our daughter to wear cloth diapers. So far it has been easy, she hasn't had a diaper rash, and it really is super cheap. Despite all the fancy cloth diapers out there, frankly we prefer prefolds and covers, although we have some pocket diapers that we use when we're out and about. Anyway, while a lot of folks go EEEW, POOP!, cloth diapering, whether you buy your own or use a diaper service, is something to consider. I'd be happy to point you in lots of directions on this subject.

Book for you: Baby 411.

Books for her: Thinking 'It's just an infant what does she know' I waited under mine was 13 weeks to begin to read to her. And her reaction was OMG BOOK! She loved it instantly. I regret not starting sooner. Even now, if she is screaming her fool head off, putting a book in front of her and reading to her will get to calm down and pay attention to the book. Board books are good because she can flail and grasp at them without worrying about a papercut. And of course, as she's hungry for knowledge ... chew on them.

Guest's picture
spaces

PS - Best part about cloth diapers? No poop explosions!

Guest's picture
Rebecca F

Seriously, cloth diapers have changes so much since what our parents used. They are easy, convenient, cheap, cute, durable, and wonderful! I regret the first 4 months of my daughters life and all the money I wasted on disposable diapers.

Check out some cloth diapering sites (kellyscloset.com and diaperswappers.com are personal favorites) and see what all is out there! You'll be amazed.

Cloth is totally worth it!

Guest's picture
Guest

12 years ago, when I was pregnant with my son, I bit the bullet and spent $75 on a Baby Bjorn baby pack. Best baby money I spent! I used the pack regularly, including on a five hour flight with a layover when my son was only two months old. Being able to keep baby close in front and have my hands free to pull the suitcase and access my ticket was SO helpful, plus it kept my back from aching with the design. Baby faces you in this front pack until he/she is able to hold the head up. Then you place them facing out, so they can see the world. I could vacuum, shop, travel, walk, and more with my Baby Bjorn and keep my baby close and cozy. The Baby Bjorn is completely machine washable, comes in a lot of patterns (now), and wears well. I passed mine along to my cousin, and she's still using it on baby #3, 12 years later.

I skipped the swing and changing table, too. Instead, I had changing "stations" in the rooms we spent the most time in--a towel or blanket, wipes, diapers, and a couple of plastic grocery bags in a basket. Worked like a charm. Without a swing, we were given a bouncy chair that vibrated--priceless! It kept my son so happy that we actually bought a second one for travelling/our bedroom. He was completely mellow in that chair, even when he was sick.

Wastes? The car charging bottle warmer, the bassinet (bought new, used three weeks--buy used!), and the Diaper Genie. Spend money on bibs and socks instead--I never had enough of those!

Guest's picture
Connie

I think I have to disagree with the swing in the waste of money category. Not completely. If your's is a baby who likes to swing, go for it. Test a friends swing out with your baby. If that swing lets baby sleep so you can get a few hours of shut-eye, then it is worth it's weight in gold. I had one for my boys (given to me in a shower) and it saved many a night and my babies liked it too!

Guest's picture
Guest

I think you should wait until "a problem" arises. Fussiness, not being able to take a shower, whatever. Then try to find a solution for your baby. Not every baby needs everything out there on the market, but some parents will find there is something that is a lifesaver. Wait until you need to find a solution or something that will help your individual need and leave everything else behind. You will find one thing you won't need and that is ADVICE from other people about how they did it. DO WHAT WORKS FOR YOU.

Guest's picture
Guest

There are inexpensive changing pads that you can secure to the top of a dresser to convert a dresser to a changing table. we used this with both of our children and used the top drawer to store diapers/wipes as well as clothing.

I agree with most other posters re: swing. It will depend upon the baby you get. With our first son, the swing was critical to helping him through the early evening witching hour. Our second son didn't have much use for it, though.

I always wondered about bacterial growth with the wipes warmer, so we didn't get one.

I agree about baby shoes being unnecessary especially since socks will do fine at keeping their feet cozy.

Guest's picture
Leah

Oh baby, the expectant parents' dilemma.

Well, contrary to all the commenters here, I have to say that we found the swing completely useless with both of my kids. They hated it, just hated it. So at the very least, I recommend not buying it until the baby is already there, and you can test it and, if it's a no-go, return it to the store.

I would also recommend against buying receiving blankets. Most of them are too small to be useful for swaddling anyway. The best swaddling blankets we had were cut out of a very cheap set of flannel sheets. Oh, and the pillowcases from that set made excellent changing pad covers.

The one thing I absolutely could not do without is a sling. And the best one in my opinion (and I've tried them all and then some) is a stretchy wrap, like a Moby wrap. It's cheaper than bjorn and is much more versatile -- you can wrap it any which way, you can use it with babies the first day they of their life and they will last longer than the bjorn also. They work with a person of any size, and I've yet to meet a baby that didn't like them. They may look daunting at first, but aren't at all -- there are tons of videos on youtube showing how to wrap one in seconds. And having a sling, you can actually skip a stroller (I know I have with my second child :) ).

more information than you wanted is at www.babywearer.com -- it's a great site to browse.

Now for more things we didn't use:

-- wipe warmer (have yet to understand why one needs it)

-- crib mobiles (our kids didn't like lying there watching them)

-- cribs (although that's a very personal decision. We did have a crib, but our kids made their decision known very unequivocally)

-- baby lotions/shampoos/etc. Babies are actually great at regulating their personal hygine if you make sure that their diaper is clean and you wash them with water periodically.

-- infant car mirrors (the kind you supposedly use to see whether your baby is asleep when they are in a rear-facing car seat. It's a hazard in case of accidents, and it's a distraction at best).

-- shoes, just like you say. Clothes that are cutesy in an adult way. Really, you don't want to try to get your newborn into a pair of jeans.

-- diaper bags, expensive strollers, rocking chair, etc.

Guest's picture
Sam

My son out grew the swing gifted to me before he was 4 months. He enjoyed the swing greatly but he was simply too big.

I never did a crib - he stayed in a baby safe room (very clean carpet, capped outlets & no furniture) with a mattress on the floor. There was a baby gate across the doorway. He wake up & just play with his toys on his floor until I came in the room (he usually woke while i was in the shower).
Until he was 6 months or so he'd sleep with me & I remember spending many nights snoozing with him in my arms on his mattress on the floor of his room.
It worked great until he was about 3. Then he got a regular bad and a bookcase anchored to the wall. His clothes stayed in his closet which was locked.

I miss those days... babies are so wonderful.

Guest's picture
Guest

I have to agree on everything except the diaper genie. I guess it depends on your living conditions but in a high rise condo there is no "outside trash" that is easy to get to. I found the diaper genie contained odors well as long as you emptied it out every 2 or 3 days. I could see that this would be a waste if you lived in a home or somewhere you could easily/quickly access an outside trash bin.

Guest's picture
Guest

I also disagree about the wipe warmer. When baby wakes up for that 2am feeding and you change her before putting her back down...a cold (room temp) wipes wakes them RIGHT UP. A warm one let them stay half asleep and continue to fall asleep.

Guess it would depend on how easy your baby gets shocked by the temp. I know for my kids it guaranteed I got to go back to bed...and I was every sorry any time I didn't have it!

Guest's picture
Lauren

All you really NEED for a newborn are sleepers, some light blankets for swaddling, diapers & wipes of some kind, and a comfortable place to sit while nursing. And some kind of carrier/stroller, and a car seat. And baby wash and nail nippers. And if it's *my* baby, a prescription for Zantac and a dozen or so bibs.

1. Too many tiny baby clothes - So true. You really only need a half-dozen sleepers and another half-dozen outfits. But baby clothes are so cute, nobody sticks to that.

2. Baby shoes - until they're walking, they can wear socks, unless it's cold and they're going outside.

3. "Educational" DVDs for babies - waste of money, although my 5-year-old used to watch Baby Einstein DVDs to get to sleep.

4. Changing table - they make $20 "changing pads" that you can attach to the top of a dresser. We've been using ours for 5.5 years now, so it was a great investment, even if you factor in 3 $10 terrycloth covers.

5. Wipe warmer - you can scrunch the wipe in your hand for a few seconds to warm it up if the coldness bothers your baby.

6. Nursery decoration - cute, but a total waste of money, given how fast they grow.

7. Swing - not needed, except when it is. Our first baby never swung. Second baby - lifesaver. Some babies just love being in motion, and if they can't swing, they expect YOU to provide it.

8. WhyCry Baby Crying Analyzer - no comment.

9. Diaper Genie - when you're taking care of a newborn, you don't have time to make a special trip outside 10 times a day, which is approximately how often they poop. But a Diaper Champ or other sealed waste receptacle that uses regular garbage bags is more economical than the Diaper Genie. Both will eventually stink, because that's what happens when you mix plastic with poop.

Guest's picture
Daniel

What we learned with our four babies:

1) If you have enough friends/family with baby hand-me-downs, you probably won't ever have to actually buy most clothes.

2) About 1/2 of our kids loved the swing. The other 1/2 were indifferent. We got an old, metal, battery-powered swing 2nd hand, and it was great.

3) We did cloth diapers. Saved an enormous amount of money and, really, wasn't that much worse than disposables. Yeah, you've gotta dunk 'em, but if you're breastfeeding, the poo doesn't smell and it's not a terrible chore. We bought a dry pail that had a place for deodorizing discs in the lid. Kept it in the bathroom for 9 years, and used the SAME set of cloth diapers on all our children! We did use disposables, too, mainly when we were going out for extended periods or on vacation. BONUS: When the kids are older, the bulkiness of cloth diapers are a strong incentive for them to potty train.

4) We did a lot of changing the baby on the floor, but we also had a 2nd hand changing table that was WONDERFUL. That's where we kept all the supplies (handy-dandy), and, for the younger kids, it was nice to be able to stand upright (we're getting old). Also, with multiple children, it can be hard sometimes to find a clear baby-sized space on the floor when you need.

5)Baby Shoes - our pediatrician warned us against putting the baby in shoes before he was walking for orthopaedic reasons. We had a nice pair of soft-soled shoes for dress-up occasions, but that was it.

Guest's picture
Kathryn

I had both my babies while I was still in grad school, so our equipment was pretty minimal. In fact, my daughter was born while I was doing fieldwork in Bolivia, and her accoutrements were extremely minimal! (A big woven basket to park her in before she started crawling, a walker to park her in after she started crawling, a big cloth square that served as a multi-position sling, and a frame backpack).

With my son, though, we did have a few of the traditional "baby things," and I'm in agreement with the majority that a swing can be very useful, as is the booster seat w/tray alternative to a space-hogging high chair (and you can take it with your to grandma's/auntie's etc.) We also had a doorway jumper that he really loved and that would keep him entertained for 15 or 20 minutes sometimes, which is an eternity with a 6-month old.

The other thing that I wouldn't do without is one or more types of body carriers. A sling or soft front carrier is great when they are little and need a lot of carrying around and soothing (I'd recommend a sling if you're nursing). Once they're sturdy enough, a backpack carrier is so much easier than a stroller! I just don't understand the appeal of these monster strollers (I guess for the same reason I don't really understand SUVs). Once your toddler is old enough to be a burden in a backpack, they should be toddlin', not strollin'!

Guest's picture
Rob O.

Shopping cart liners/covers are an exasperating waste of time & money! Let's not forget what the immune system is designed to do! And those things are so darned difficult to insert into a shopping cart that you're only likely to attempt it once or twice before throwing in the towel.

Guest's picture
Guest

A changing table may be unnecessary for a 20-something parent, but as a parent who was approaching 40 when the baby was born, it was a necessity. Yes, I did occasionally change a diaper on the floor, but having baby and diaper at the proper height saved my back a lot of pain. And to change how many diapers a day hoisting the baby, diaper, wipe and pad up and down off the floor or the couch just wasn't an option ;-)

And having the extra security of the rail around the table was excellent for our more active first born. I can't imagine changing him on top of a dresser. He was so squirmy!

Guest's picture
Guest

Some babies are really helped by swings. It saved my sanity with my second child and it became part of her nap routine.

The three most valuable items for me were:

1. Front wrap carrier (adjustable as baby grows)
2. Back carrier (gets you through museums and stores in half the time - for use when baby is older and curious)
3. Swing

None of these were cheap. Then again, if you save your money by not buying all the other stuff....

By the way, I've noticed a lot of people (and we fell victim with the first) buy or want THREE strollers: an "off-road", an umbrella and a regular one that the car seat can click into. A lot of money can be saved by buying one compact one that is strong and your child can mainly use when they are a bit older. Until then, babies would rather snuggle into the wrap carrier anyhow.

Guest's picture
Guest

I would buy a swing off Craigslist. My son didn't like his until he was older, but it was still good to have, and you can sell them for within 15% of what you bought them for 6-8 months later.

Also, the wipe warmer saved us over winter. He would scream when a cold wipe hit him. At 3am, it's worth it to keep them sleeping.

I'd agree with PP that I didn't need a changing table, but a changing pad tethered to a dresser was a lifesaver. But then I have a bad back, so bending over is a painful option.

A Moby or Ergo carrier is a must. They worked even with my bad back.

As PP said expolive poo can blow a hole in plans for just a few outfits. I would buy about 15 little t-shirts (for before the cord falls off) and 15 onesies. You can get plain ones for cheap. I would also take advantage of any hand-me-downs. That saved me tons- all but a few special items of clothing came from a family friend.

And baby shoes are useless. But I would keep an eye out for sales on Robeez and other good shoes for when he does start to need them around 12-18 months.

Guest's picture
Ryan

I just had my first child 4 months ago and there are a few things on your list I would say are well worth the money.
#1. The diaper genie. You don't necessarily need to shell out the money for the actual diaper genie, but I would at least get a diaper champ. On several occasions my son has woken up and filled a diaper (or overfilled). Then while I have him on the changing table he proceeds to squirt out a few more gallons of lovely, watery baby poop. At this time, you don't have the time to run the large pile of paper towels, wipes, diapers, and changing pad covers to the outside trash. Your hands will be full trying to keep your child out of the large pile of poop they just produced (did I mention it's very watery). Having some sort of trashcan nearby is a necessity, and one that contains the smell is a plus.
#2. Changing table; see above comment. Babies can produce some crazy messes when you take those diapers off. Even when you think they're done, they're not. Also, if you're really lucky, that watery substance will come exploding out and across the room. At times like this, it's easier to clean a changing table pad than the carpet, bed, etc. We didn't purchase a changing table, just the little contoured pad which sits on top of a dresser.
#3. The swing. I did not register for this because like you, I thought it was an unnecessary expense and I wasn't sure my son would like it. One of my mom's doctors felt that I must have a swing and gave me a very fancy one as a gift. The thing cost around $150, has 6 levels of swing, 3 levels of vibration as well as white noise and classical music playing. It has been a life saver. Best gift we received. Put him right to sleep as a newborn and we still use it occasionally for naps. I wouldn't personally shell out that amount of cash for one, but if someone else wants to buy you one, let them. You will be very grateful at 3am.

Congratulations on your new arrival! Being a mom is the best thing that ever happened to me, exploding poop and all.

Guest's picture
Guest

has a changing pad (it's sort of u shaped so it's soft and has sides on it) that is on top of a dresser my brother built. The dresser holds all the baby gear and eventually will go in the childs room. I think that makes a LOT more sense than buying an actual 'changing table' which won't get used for anything after the child is grown.

My brother also built the co-sleeper they're using which will eventually become the kiddos crib. It's amazing looking and SO handy. Ah to be a woodworker!

Guest's picture
Guest

I too am a first time mom with a one year old now - and I too thought like you.... but here are my three cents...:
#1 Baby Swing: spend money on this - I didn't buy one at first but I had a vibrating seat that my 0-3 month old loved ($40-45) until he got bored - then I got a little swing that you can take with ($40-45) -- until he got too big -- then I broke down and bought a real swing ($90)- but a low end one....If I would have purchased the back and forth, side to side, vibrating "bells and whistles" swing ($140)-- I would have saved money in the long run and 3 trips to the store in my little car and reading instructions, putting it together...(you get my point)! Your baby (every baby) is going to like and crave motion no matter what...every baby craves a different motion but the all-in-one is sure to satisfy AND as they grow, they change and like different things.
#2 I read those same TV statistics when I was pregnant. However, Baby Einstein DVDs aren't really like tv -- they are the simplest visual stimulation you have ever seen in your life -- I was shocked when I saw one like "what's the big deal?" Your baby, however thinks it's a blockbuster hit. TV is loud with fast movements and complex visuals - even cartoons and Sesame Street is too much for them. But socks and construction paper aren't going to calm your teething or crying baby down like sitting him in front of this baby musical watching toys move across the screen and watching other babies play with toys...and you won't have the energy you think you will to put on a puppet show for Mr./Ms. Cranky. In fact, I NEVER bought the DVD -- but my friend who is graduating with her degree in child development brought one over one night when I was frustrated with my little one and I WISHED I had it from the very beginning.
#3 Diaper Genie is not really that great -- I too have a diaper champ and they are less than $20 at outlets and NO expensive refills -- just any old bag will do -- they cut down on the smell 100% until the baby starts on solids and then I would say 60%. It's worth the $20.
Good Luck!

Guest's picture
Chelsey

I completely disagree with the changing table and the diaper genie. I have 3 kids 3 and under, and I own TWO diaper genies and TWO changing tables. Sure, I could change them on the floor, but it's so much easier on your back to do it at waist height. And with the number of inadvertent showers and explosions you'll get, it's nice to have someplace you can sanitize easily. And if you live in a multi-level house, you don't want to be running out to the garage every time you have a poopy diaper. And they really do work to keep the smell out, unlike diaper pails. I would die without my diaper genie.

I do find it interesting that you're writing this post without even having had kids yet. Not really an expert opinion.

Guest's picture
Guest

What I got was an emergency c-section and a little one that we knew was "different" from day 1 and later found out that "different" meant autistic. We didn't have a changing table with her, but now that I am scheduled for another c-section the first thing I bought was a changing table in an attempt to NOT split my incision open 6 times with this one:)

And with the autism, a lot of the things on this list were absolute essentials...the screaming never would have stopped without them. We tried swaddling her for the first week, and soon found out that she didn't like the sensation AT ALL...the only way to calm her when all other needs were met was the swing. As a 6 year old, she now uses a trampoline to create a rythmic repetative sensation that soothes her. We also could not change a diaper without major fits unless we used warmed wipes. And the Baby Einstein movies were a godsend. While I wouldn't put a baby in front of the movies for an extended time, when you have a kid that doesn't respond much to human interaction (and frequently human interaction upsets her more), a 30 minute stint in front of a Baby Einstein movie means that mommy gets a shower! Autistic kids also frequently have digestive issues...which means explosive diaper problems and projectile vomiting so we went through 5 onesies a day on a good day. I'm making sure I have 20 changes of clothes in newborn sizes this time!

I've never had a "typical" kid so I don't know what the usefulness of these things are for most...but I do know I am stocking up with the assumption that I'm getting another challenge. And if it turns out I only use half the stuff I'll be thankful:) I got almost everything from Craigslist, consignment shops, and friends anyway. I think the biggest mistake a lot of parents make with the "stuff" is buying everything new. I did that with my first one and realized how ridiculous it was. With the second on the way, I have a fully stocked nursery I spent $150 on!!!!

Guest's picture
Foxmom

I have twin boys, 10 months old now and the day I got their swings was a real turning point in our early relationship. We didn't discover until ds#1 was 3 months old that he had reflux and so he didn't sleep well at all at first and with two of them I just couldn't sit around holding him all the time. The swing let us all get much needed peace and quiet. Even now, though they're 23 & 19lbs respectively, they still use their swings for naps and crib for bedtime. Truly a lifesaver!

I didn't get a diaper genie but we got a The First Years - Clean Air Diaper Disposal System. It uses just regular 13gal trash bags and really does a good job of controlling smell. I like it quite a bit and it was pretty inexpensive, all told.

Guest's picture
Des

Even the Baby Einstein videos have been shown to delay development in babies. They may be convenient, but for every hour per day babies watched these, they learned 6-8 fewer words compared to babies that never watched them, according to a University of Washington study. They are not just harmless background stimuli. Calling them "Baby Einstein" and "Brainy Baby" was an excellent marketing tactic.

Guest's picture
Guestshannon

only buy new what you cannot find used in good condition. Just about any baby item needed can be found used at a fraction of the cost. For some bigger items you might borrow from someone who is not currently using it or perhaps even borrow for a few days just to test if baby likes it before investing. for example- I thought the bumbo was a brilliant idea. My baby was too fat for it, I repurposed it as a time out chair for my 3 year old but wished I had saved the $35 or bought it used for $10. 2 babies LOVED the swing, 1 baby puked and one baby screamed. All kids are different.

big ticket items I felt worth the money-

Ergo (finally bought it with #4, wish I had it with all of them)

sling

restaraunt style highchair, no tray and doesnt take up 12 square feet. ($35 at Tundra Supply)

miracle blanket (wish I had this with all of them, pricey but makes swaddling a no brainer)

Belly band for use while pregnant and to cover belly while nursing instead of buying tons of nursing shirts.

Everything else? A lot of it is just to give pregnant women something to collect and do while waiting. Even more to give other people pink or blue crap to buy for pregnant women they love.

Guest's picture
Guest

You probably already have an appropriate height dresser. Dedicate one of the top drawers to diapers and wipes, and buy a ($15) foam pad to put on top!

Guest's picture
Diana

Most of your unneccesary items are spot-on, although, I, like many others, disagree about the swing. Not only does it calm, but it is actually developmentally important for your child's brain to experience a good amount of rocking, which a swing can provide without you having to sit in a chair for hours. The rocking develops a child's cerebellum, which is vital for good balance.

As for a changing table, I just put a changing pad on top of a dresser so that I can later use the dresser in a normal capacity.

Our son did fine without a wipe warmer.

Call me "new fashioned", but I never really used our son's baby book. I started a blog for him so that out-of-town relatives could keep up, and that was WAY easier than printing out and gluing pictures. I just updated every week or so, shared stories about him and updates on doctor's appts, and when he was a year I just printed out all of the entries! Instant baby book!

A bottle warmer was probably the other least used item that we had. It never got the bottle hot enough, or it made it too hot. Running warm water over it worked well enough when we needed it, although our son had not problem drinking it cold.

Good luck with your pregnancy! Parenthood is amazing!

Guest's picture
Guest

We skipped the toddler bed, and we used a mattress on the floor (with the bed "fence/barrier" thingies). Once our sons got older, we replaced the boxframe so that the bed was of normal height.

Guest's picture

I strongly endorse Xin Lu's comments on items 1 & 9.

Clothes--go the hand me down route where ever possible, failing that hit garage sales and thrift stores. Infants/toddlers/small children grow out of clothes in a matter of weeks, and big bucks spent here are one of the worst uses of financial resources possible.

Diaper Genie--had it for our first, used it maybe once or twice, then found that a doubled up plastic bag does just as well. You'll be too busy with too much to wrestle with any gadget that doesn't produce obvious and overwhelming benefits. One of the first things that goes out the window with the arrival of an infant is order, and since diaper disposal is ubiquitous, you'll need to be prepared for a quick disposal anywhere, anytime.

Guest's picture
Guest

Congrats! My baby is 10 months old.

Here are my thoughts on your list:

1. Too many tiny baby clothes - People do tend to say that they had too many, but it depends on what type of child you have. My daughter had reflux and we actually went through every single thing she owned in one day such that she ended up naked with her diaper. Even if my husband ran out to buy more, I wouldn't put the clothes on her right away without washing first because of formaldehyde residue from the manufacturing process.

2. Baby shoes - My 10 month old wears shoes. She goes to daycare and the Robeez have been a lifesaver in keeping her socks on in the winter and when she is crawling and pulling herself up to stand she has something on her feet. (Our daycare's rule is once they stand, they need some type of closed toed shoe to protect their feet when they go outside).

3. "Educational" DVDs for babies - I agree. Just play with your baby.

4. Changing table - When we had the baby, we were in a temporary furnished rental while we were moving in between states. We did not have the luxury of having this. Let me tell you... we had to live without sheets on several occasions because of squirting baby poo... It's not fun to clean it up from the floor at 3am, either. We had no choice but to change her on the bed. I would spring for this or at least a super-large waterproof pad.

5. Wipe warmer - I agree, but it depends on your baby. If you keep your house at 60F during the winter, it might be something that can save you from them screaming when you change them.

6. Nursery decoration - They're cute, but not necessary

7. Swing - My baby wouldn't sleep anywhere but the swing until she was 6 months old. It was a lifesaver. You can buy nice used ones on craigslist. I loved mine, but it depends on your baby. I would wait and see if your baby has any issues. If not, I wouldn't get it.

8. WhyCry Baby Crying Analyzer - Never heard of it.

9. Diaper Genie - I like it because we have to keep our outside trash can in our garage (HOA rules). If I threw them outside, our garage would smell awful. At least the diaper genie minimizes smells. I also own the Diaper Champ and once my baby started solids, it was not worth it anymore.

Xin Lu's picture
Xin Lu

Thanks for all the comments everyone!!  I'll definitely let my baby try the swing since so many people like it.  It seems that everyone's list is pretty different.  I agree with the sentiment that perhaps it's better to buy things as the need arises.

Guest's picture
Lori, NICU nurse

A lot of families have had very pleasant times using the family bed sleeping arrangement, but the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends against it, because there have been (thankfully rare) occurances of babies getting smothered.

Guest's picture
samuel welsh

congratulations, Ipray that you will have a beautiful baby
and for a great marriage.
God bless.

Xin Lu's picture
Xin Lu

My husband is afraid of the co-sleeping thing.  He says he is sure he'd hurt the baby somehow.  I did sleep with my parents when I was a baby and my mom said that she was afraid of squashing me, too, but I wasn't stupid and just moved out of the way most of the time. I am definitely considering cloth diapers since disposable diapers contribute a lot to landfills.  We will see, though. 

Guest's picture
Tammy

A lot of people told me not to get a changing table because they never used theirs, but I use mine multiple times each day. It has really saved my back. I think it usefulness will partly depend on where the baby's room is. If you have a two story house, for example, you won't want to hike up the stairs just to change the baby. In a small one story home like mine, however, it is always convenient.

About the swing, my baby never liked swinging. You might just wait until the baby is born and then borrow one for a few days from a friend. If your baby likes it, you may want to consider getting one.

Guest's picture
Guest

I had the Diaper Genie and hated it - mine never seemed to work right. I did have a Boppy and a Boppy Gym, both of which my son loved.

Guest's picture
DivaJean

It doesn't have to be that expensive to have some of the so-called luxuries for your baby.

Seek out garage sales, newspaper ads (like free PennySaver type newspapers) from parents whose kids have moved on. A $200 swing could be had for maybe $40. Then you could in theory, sell it when your kid has moved on for nearly that amount. Be aware of safety recalls and check into these before buying...

Guest's picture

Definitely give cloth diapers a serious thought. We use prefolds and covers and have found that to be the most economical and easy solution.

Have you *smelled* disposable diapers? The first time we tried them I about died. We can actually toss my daughter's cloth diapers (#1 and #2) into an open-air hamper and not smell a thing. But when we put one single disposable in our kitchen garbage can it stunk up the whole house. Yuck.

Guest's picture
Courtney

I am aware that there is a vehement anti-cosleeping movement in this country right now. That said, I suggest you do some serious reading before you are definitely anti-co-sleeping. I recommend:

Mother Nature: Maternal Instincts and How They Shape the Human Species by Dr. Sarah Hrdy
What’s Going on in There? : How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life by Dr. Lise Eliot
Why Love Matters: How Affection Shapes a Baby’s Brain by Dr. Sue Gerhardt
The Scientist in the Crib: What Early Learning Tells Us About the Mind by Dr. Alison Gopnik
Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent by Dr. Meredith Small
Raising An Emotionally Intelligent Child by Dr. John Gottman
The Vital Touch: How Intimate Contact With Your Baby Leads To Happier, Healthier Development by Sharon Heller
From Neurons to Neighborhoods : The Science of Early Childhood Development by Committee on Integrating the Science of Early Childhood Development
The Nursing Mother's Companion: Revised Edition by Kathleen Huggins

Guest's picture
Todd

Have to agree on the changing table. Instead, we used a curved changing pad on our counter in the laundry room. I bolted a towel bar on the counter to keep our son from rolling off (and the pad from slipping off). Eventually got rid of the pad as our son got older. Diapers went into the Diaper Genie (more on that later) and any soiled clothes either went in to the utility sink or into the washer.

The Diaper Genie worked great. Limited odor and only noticeable in the laundry room. Living in Florida, the hot son cooking our large oversized roll-out trash can that we are required to use would have resulted in unbearable smells outside the house. We do like our neighbors.

No wipe warmer, no bottle warmer, no shoes, no baby monitor. We had more clothes, as you noted, than he could ever wear.

Guest's picture
Guest

My biggest peice of advice coming from some one who just had a baby 5 months ago and we had a preaty tight budget is to buy only what you need to take him home ad a few days worth of clothes I did this and was shocked by what people will give you i have a wipe warmer that was given to me, which was really nice living in canada and having a cold bathroom in the winter. but my swing , crib mattress, 2 play pens ,bounceys , jolly jumper and over 6 rubber maids full of clothes were also given too me mostly all new , ive had to turn down a swing. but the list goes on and on i dont have a dipper genie i was going to go with out a change table but some one bought me a change pad . the biggest baby thing i spent money on was the car seat and bases also graco product are all compatible. so your car seat will fit in a stroller and all their bases even if you havent boughted the sets together.

PS: is its a first grand child like ours they'll be iching to get you stuff.

Guest's picture
Debi

Congrats
I have had two children and kept many kids in my home so I can stay at home.
Swing or Bouncy seat is a great thing to have. Changing table had one with my first and never used it once they get so big I couldn't lift them up to get them there so not a necessity, get a basket put enough diapers some wipes qtips alcohol hand sanitizer so you have every thing you need right there. I used my swing as a way to feed them until they could sit in a booster seat at the table. Hope all goes well

Guest's picture

Thank you so much for listing baby items NOT to get. Many moms disagree with the list that I personally compiled, but after having 2 kids myself and having discussed the theme with other moms, I feel compelled to share the list. Too many first-time moms feel pressured to buy everything for their baby, even though a lot of it is useless (wipe warmer anyone?).

I wholeheartedly agree with you on the baby videos but some moms are so adament on how smart it made their babies, without giving themselves any credit!

Here’s a list that I compiled in my post for you on what NOT to spend money on for your new arrival:
http://perfectingmotherhood.wordpress.com/2010/06/03/baby-gear-dont-wast...

Guest's picture

Oh my. I've never heard of that crying analyzer. It sounds like a joke, doesn't it?

Guest's picture
guest...

I disagree with many of the items on your list.

1. Baby clothes - This can be true for a lot of parents, but not with my daughter. She is eight-months-old and still only wearing 3-6 months so we get a lot of use out of her clothes.

3. Baby DVDs - My daughter loves Baby Einstein and it is a great way to help her relax on those occasions that she is fighting her sleep. I do not feel that they really teach her much, but I don't think that watching them is any different than watching her surroundings. It is allowing her to explore many new objects and music, from right in our livingroom. They are also a great way for me to be able to take a shower without listening to her cry.

4. Changing table - My grandfather made a changing table for my daughter. It is so nice! She won't hold still on the floor when I change her, but she will hold still on the table. It also gives me a place to store all of her diapers, extra bath items, blankets, wipes, and nobody can see them unless they open the drawers and doors.

5. Wipe warmer - Although we do not have one, I feel we should. My daughter always gasps for air when we put the wipes on her bottom. Wipes do not stay room temperature. They get very cold. Go ahead and stick one on the inside of your legs or even on your lower tummy. My boyfriend and I looked at some for her, but didn't know what brand would be best, and not dry out the wipes. Now that I read this though, I think we will be getting her one. And it will be the Munchkin brand like somebody else suggested.

7. The swing - The swing was amazing those first few months for us. You are right though, many babies don't like them. So it would probably be best to pick up a used one.

All of these things are learned with experience. There are so many things that I thought were stupid when I was pregnant, that we now own. Congrats.

Guest's picture
Athas

I think the best way to figure out what works for you and not spend a fortune at the same time is to go used as much as possible. We had a crib and changing table given to us by a friend because he was through having kids. So it didn't matter that our son slept in our bed exclusively for the first year. We found things like diaper pails and bottle warmers (which I scoffed at, but are very nice, especially when dad needed to quickly defrost some expressed milk) on craigslist. We found a Peg Perego (read:super expensive) high chair at a garage sale for $10. We got a swing (which our son hated) for $10 at a thrift store but we're keeping the exersaucer bouncing thing because he loved it. The one thing I do recommend is to always check for recalls when you buy something used. And check the product thoroughly to make sure it is in good working order.

Guest's picture
Allison

My favorite places to shop are children's resale and consignment shops. And when I've hit a good yard sale for baby girls clothing (21 mos. & 4 mos.), that's Jackpot City! Of course I love to buy my daughter new things, which I do, but the majority is gently used pre-owned clothing. They grow SO fast! The wipes warmer is on the top of my list of JUNK! And consumers fall for it because it's a "sweetness" for our babies, but get 'em changed and keep moving on. Babies are resilient little cuties; I'm sure they'll bounce back from the tepid feel of a wipe making their bottoms clean.

Guest's picture
Allison

I went to the dollar store and got a 5 gallon trash can with snap locks on the side. Works fine. Reusing grocery bags in them is a lot cheaper than Diaper Genie refills.

Guest's picture
Guest

The Diaper Genie is great, as long as you keep up with filling the baking soda filling there will be no stinks. I recomand the Diaper Genie.

Guest's picture
Guest

A changing table is a necessity to me. I only have a very small dresser (to small for a pad), a convertable crib and a changing table in my babies room, so with out it I would have to leave the room with all of her clothes to get her dressed...not quite a waste of money in my eyes.