I’m so excited for my best friend who is pregnant with her first baby! Talking with her has me thinking about how overwhelming it was to create that first baby registry. There were so many choices and so many products. My second baby is now almost one (shock, gasp, sniffle) so I feel that I’ve earned the right to give a little advice on making a baby registry. Here’s my list of what I wish I hadn’t registered for, what would have been a better choice, and why:
- Conventional crib mattress Organic, Non-toxic crib mattress – the concoction of chemicals emitted from vinyl crib mattresses is ridiculously unhealthy for developing little bodies. And baby spends so much time sleeping on that mattress! Ditto on the organic mattress protector, since conventional ones are made with vinyl.
- Baby sling & Bjorn front carrier Beco Baby Carrier – would have been the only carrier I would have needed from birth to age 3+. Also would have been more comfortable. I never did like the sling because of how it swings away from the body.
- Disposable diapers BumGenius Cloth Diapers – there’s no area in which we wasted more money or dealt with more unnecessary trouble than in this one. All that money in the trash and all those messy disposable diaper explosions could have been avoided.
- Avent baby bottles/pacifiers Safe BPA-Free Bottles/Pacifiers – at the time I was completely unaware of these concerns. Now I would never think twice about spending extra money on safer feeding and soothing choices.
- Boppy Any other Nursing Pillow – I have found the Boppy to be the least helpful pillow for breastfeeding. The rounded surface is all wrong! Look for a nursing pillow that is flat on top so you’re not constantly repositioning baby.
- Gerber Baby Body Care Natural, higher-end Baby Products – one bottle of baby wash, shampoo, lotion, etc. will probably last you the entire first year or longer. If I had known, I would have splurged on some nicer products.
- Conventional Receiving Blankets Large Swaddling Blankets – typical receiving blankets are only large enough to wrap a newborn. I swaddle my babies throughout their first year as a sleep cue. Um, I needed some bigger blankets!
- Extra Bottles for Freezing Milk Glass storage or milk freezing trays – I’d feel best about freezing extra breastmilk in glass containers for health reasons, but another good option would have been Sensible Lines Milk Trays. It’s nice to freeze in super-small portions so that you don’t have to defrost more milk than you need.
- Infant gowns Footed Sleepers – many parents love gowns for easy changing access. We hated them because we felt they were too drafty for our winter babies. When it comes to baby clothes it’s wise to save receipts and hold off on washing everything until you see what you prefer to use.
- Zooper highchair Wooden Highchair – at the time I couldn’t imagine spending as much on a high chair as popular wooden models demanded. Now there are many affordable versions. Wooden highchairs are easier to clean, fit better with modern decor, and are a safer food surface too. You’ll be looking at that highchair a LOT!
It’s definitely true that my revised baby registry would have been more spendy than my original one. At the time, my husband and I were shocked by the costs of gearing up for baby. If you’re in a similar situation I suggest you look into getting your first-choice items secondhand through consignment stores or eBay. You will probably find products in wonderful condition that end up costing you just as much or even less than those second-rate items you might have compromised for brand new.