When you are expecting a new baby, the list seems endless for what many deem ‘necessities’. The registries are infinite and can easily overwhelm new parents, but babies are actually quite simple. Whether you are looking to save a few pennies or just minimize the clutter, there are only a few things that are absolutely necessary. There is no need to frantically rush corralling all the baby items ahead of their arrival. Cover the basics and buy as-needed to avoid frivolous purchases and save yourself the stress.
1. A quality car seat.
Don’t skimp on the car seat, and avoid purchasing it secondhand. You need to have a car seat that was not in a previous car accident, and this can’t be verified with secondhand items. You can get extendable car seats that grow with your baby. Another option is to purchase a car seat that can be easily removed from the mount and placed into a stroller. Do thorough research to see what is the best fit for you.
2. A place to put the baby down.
Placing your newborn down for a few minutes can be a luxury to a new mom. A baby-less shower is necessary at times. Find a way to safely put your baby in a spot for a short period of time. A simple and comfortable bouncer can easily do the trick. You can also use a bassinet or car seat for this purpose. A swing or bouncer can easily be moved around the house to allow you to whip up a meal or get a little work done.
3. A way to take the baby somewhere.
There are more ways than one to get around in public with a new baby. Some families prefer a stroller for extra storage and ease of use. There are many babywearing methods that can help the baby feel safe and comfortable next to your body, and give you the added benefit of two accessible hands. Ring slings, wraps, pouches and soft carriers are a few options to wear your baby. Babywearing is also a nice method for your partner to get some close cuddle time with the baby.
4. Diapers & clothing.
Diapers are absolutely necessary for babies. There are different disposable options as well as cloth diapering. Research which method best fits your family’s lifestyle. Remember to purchase in varying sizes because your baby will grow, and sometimes faster than you think. You can always donate diapers that are too small or exchange them for a larger size.
There is no need to go all-out with clothing, but get a few basics that correspond with the weather in your area. Remember to have some newborn and up to three-month-old clothes ready for babies arrival. You never know if they will be too big to fit into newborn clothes right off the bat. Purchasing secondhand and through baby clothing swaps can save you money and allow you to pay it forward in the future.
5. A place for baby to sleep.
New babies do a lot of sleeping and they can often do it anywhere. Babies in Sweden sleep in boxes for the first few months of their lives. An entire nursery is not necessary for the early months of your baby’s life. If you plan to exclusively breastfeed, it may be easier for you to keep the baby nearby for frequent feedings. Opt for a bassinet, co-sleeper or baby nest before moving onto a crib or nursery. It depends on your preference, but regardless, the baby will need a place to sleep.
There are numerous items companies tell you are a must for your newborn. Don’t buy into the hype and keep it simple by covering the basics. You can always buy more as you find necessary or desirable. Keep it simple and enjoy the new addition to your family.