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In order of importance (besides car seat), what baby gear is needed the first 6 months?

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 

Is a play yard necessary this early?  A swing?  A bouncer?  High chair?  I have limited space, so I'm not purchasing all these goodies at once..but would like to know what is definitely needed right away.


Here's what I have so far:


Crib and bedding (not using a bassinet due to space limitations)

Car seat w/ universal stroller frame

Stroller for use at 3 months for walks

Baby Carrier


Thank you ladies in advance for your help...first time mother here!!!!!

post #2 of 35

Neither of my kids were super crazy about the swing.  My firrst son loved the jungle jumper, but you really cant use that til they are about 4-6 months anyway. 


A wrap COULD save your life, depending on your childs disposition.  I didnt have one for DS1, and it wasnt really needed.  DS2 I had to wear while cooking, laundry, tending to my older son, going to the bathroom.  It was ESSENTIAL to my sanity. 


Will you be going back to work?  If so, say save your money by not bothering with the swing or jumper, and get a really great pump (Obviously if you wont be going back to work, its not really necessary). 


Those little bouncy chairs are good until they are sitting up, unless of course your baby wants nothing to do with it because it doesnt come with you attached to it.  I learned that the hard way.  lol

post #3 of 35
Thread Starter 

Hi Charlie's Angel-Yes, I want to get a wrap for she's tiny...the carrier I purchased starts at 15 lbs.


I'm not planning to go back to work...but that might change.  I figure if I do go back, I will rent a pump to see if I can handle pumping at work, or to see if breastfeeding even works out before I purchase.  Oh and if I do purchase a pump, which do you recommend?


I hear so many babies don't like swings or bouncy seats..what's up with that???? Hmmmm...thanks for your input.

post #4 of 35

You don't need a high chair right away... but if you're looking to save space, a friend of ours has a Chicco travelseat that locks on to the table.  When I saw her use it a couple weeks back, it looked super convenient and easy to travel with or store.  Not big, like a high chair (though I'm sure they make easily stored high chairs too).

post #5 of 35

YES!  I forgot to mention about the high chair.  I kinda wish we had never got one, but we dont have a problem with space.  I bought this http://www.target.com/Fisher-Price-Healthy-Care-Booster/dp/B000WU3DVG/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&searchView=grid5&keywords=booster%20chair&fromGsearch=true&sr=1-1&qid=1298041419&rh=&searchRank=target104545&id=Fisher-Price%20Healthy%20Care%20Booster&node=1038576%7C1287991011&searchSize=30&searchPage=1&searchNodeID=1038576%7C1287991011&searchBinNameList=subjectbin%2Cprice%2Ctarget_com_primary_color-bin%2Ctarget_com_size-bin%2Ctarget_com_brand-bin&frombrowse=0 For when we went to resturants, and thought, this would have been perfect instead of a high chair.  Straps right to any existing chair, has its own tray, and straps for little babies.  Then it folds up all nice and neat.  So cool! and then the tray comes off for just a plain old booster sseat for toddlers. 


If your going to rent one, just stick with that.  I ended up having to do that because of supply issues.  I needed hospistal grade.  (Little tip, go in with the attitude that BFing WILL WORK.) I rented the lactina, but had to get the attachments for it.  Def do a double pump, if you need it every day.  A single is good for moms who only need to pump occassionaly, but if your pumping daily, trust me, you want a double!

post #6 of 35

Beside the car seat, my babies just need a couple baby slings (ring sling, a good wrap), clothing and  cloth diapers  and potty seat , because we ECed.  We also like a moises basket for laid the baby here and there, especially for take a shower in the early months. Other than that we don't had crib, we co-sleep, not strollers or swings, neither of mine kids like to  be restrict them. Oh! I forget it...A good diaper or messenger bag to carry baby clothing, diapers, my water bottle and some teething toys.

post #7 of 35

i would say you're set.

i liked having a baby bathtub eventually. i thought i'd just be cool about it and do it in the sink but she hated it. loved the tub. but you can see how it goes and send dh out to target...it's not that big of a deal.

a swing or bouncy seat is helpful....is there any you could borrow to figure out which works for you? (or just keep the receipts!) my babe liked teh swing not so much the bouncy seat. when i took a shower i actually just took the bucket carseat in there and put her in there. she preferred it to the seat. huh.


you won't need a highchair for a long time and you can deal with that when you;re out of crazy newborn mode.

i only needed a playyard for travel so i'd wait on that as well. 

check your WIC office about the pumps. they "rent" medela pump in styles here for a refundable $15 deposit.

post #8 of 35

We needed a boob, a ring sling, baby clothes and some cloth diapers. Everything else was not used by us.

post #9 of 35

I would say you are pretty set, too.  As someone mentioned, a tub is helpful but not necessary.  We didn't use ours much for DS2 - I took him into the tub with me for baths.  We might have used it a few times before he could sit up, and then we switched back to letting him sit up in the big tub with his brother.  The sink is a great alternative (we have never tried, but only because our kitchen sink is by two drafty windows!).


The high chair can definitely wait.  We purchased an inexpensive booster/tray chair that attaches to a regular grown up chair.  It's a little lower than a high chair (we originally used it on a pub-height chair to address this issue) but doable...the tray comes off, goes in the dishwasher etc, and when they outgrow the tray you can just use it as a booster to the regular table.  I think it was under 50 bucks and it took up no more room than a regular dining chair - tucked right in under the table.


Swing is one of those things that can be either a lifesaver or a waste of money, depending on the baby.  We used ours for DS1 quite a bit.  However, DS2 hated it.  The same goes for the bouncer - we borrowed a jolly jumper for DS1 and he loved it; we borrowed a jumperoo for DS2 and he hated it.  Or maybe you mean bouncy chair...?  Those are like the swings - they can be a great spot to be baby-free for a few minutes to shower or cook or pee, if they like it (I will let you guess on which of our kids liked it and which didn't, LOL!  There is definitely a pattern there :P).


I think starting with little and adding IF you need to is a great strategy.  We find as each child is added that what we thought we really needed the first time around wasn't really a necessity.

post #10 of 35

My kids LOVED being swaddled. It allowed me to put them in their own little space (crib, bassinet, etc) when I needed to stretch on the bed by myself (well with DH too). They felt snuggly and safe, so they would actually stay asleep for up to a few hours. I had atleast 3 with all my kids, the kidopatomous brand from BRU. Though next time I may try the Adin and Anias (spelling?) brand I have seen at many different stores. I like the BRU ones because they were less bulky (I used the thin cotton ones for my Dec, Sept, and June babies) and had velcro to adjust the snuggness. You can change their dipes while keeping their arms swaddled.


ETA With my youngest I also went to the fabric store to get thin flannel. I had my best friend's mom hem the edges of a 40inX40in piece of flannel. It made the perfect nursing cover up and swaddle blanket. I still use mine as a nursing cover up or lovie for DD, and she is 20mths old! Its cheaper then buying one from the store. You can get all kinds of cute fabric for a couple bucks a yard.

post #11 of 35

MOST baby gear is not essential.  SOME people find they NEED ___ to get through with their babies but it requires knowing the baby first.

I personally needed a swing for kiddo for the first couple months.  I couldn't handle her movement needs otherwise and was getting too tired and stressed and she wasn't getting enough sleep so a friend lent me a swing til I could buy one (at which point she didn't want to use it... although it was a different style seat which could have been the reason.. )

However the bouncy seat gifted to us was rarely used, and I really didn't like the baby bathtub we got (pro tip, the cheapest one is cheapest for a reason)  however once she was 3ish months old I felt fine putting her in the big bath tub with just a tiny bit of water.  She didn't roll over and if my eyes weren't on her, my hand was (and often both!)  She liked it a LOT more than the tub and it was easier for me.

We used our pack n play a ton but that is because we didn't have a crib til she was 5-6 months ish and after that we only used it a few times when we traveled.  No way would she play in it when I needed her in a safe space... I just ended up making my living room 100% safe for her when she'd actually let me go away from her.

We also didn't have a high chair til she was much older and I honestly wish we had gotten one sooner.  I am not very good at eating while holding a baby... at least my baby... so it got really frustrating for me.  We have a cheap seat that straps to a regular chair (similar to the booster someone else linked) but there is a nicer one that reclines better for smaller kiddos.. I still probably wouldn't use it until 4-6 months but it would have saved my sanity having a place to set her that was up at our level where she wanted to be so I could eat more easily.

Kiddo also loved the jumparoo but only for like twoish months.  I'm glad we got it off craigslist!  We then resold it because it was just too big to keep around for the next kid.  I have a video of her really going to town in the jumperoo but it SO wouldn't have been worth it to buy a brand new one at full price.


Everyone obviously has their own experiences so if you CAN, I'd honestly wait until the baby is here and just get things as needed to try and avoid buying anything that ends up unnecessary for your kid.  I'd also buy used for some things too wherever possible since a lot of this stuff they might like but only for a little bit.  Of course, I have a friend who's son only stopped using the swing because he was literally too big for it and was still mad when his new little sister got to use it but don't count on all baby gear being used so much like that!

post #12 of 35
Thread Starter 

Wow-thank you moms so much!!!!  You guys are so super helpful.  I will probably just add a wrap, tub and bouncy seat and from there add on later.  I'm not having a shower specifically because I don't want all the extra junk, don't have room to store.  My mom has pretty much outfitted the baby to about 9 months, between consignment shops and new stuff...


I love that booster seat idea from fisher price, what a great space saver and it can be used from 1 month!!!!


I find it really interesting that some babies prefer swings and some don't..you would think they all would like the rocking...well this has been such a great help.


I do so appreciate you all taking the time to respond!!  I probably would have bought some stuff that really wasn't necessary...


post #13 of 35

You have a lot of lists already, but fwiw...


Miracle blanket - swaddle blanket that worked WAY better than any of the others for us


Vibrating nail file - mostly to use while she was asleep and really young. Very gentle, no fear of clipping her little fingertips!


Swing - as others have said, you could see if you need it. We had our LO in arms most times, but the swing was pretty much the only other place that we could set her down and she would be happy. She wasn't much a fan of the bouncy seat (we had the non-electronic baby bjorn one).


Ikea high chair - only $20! (at least when we bought it) Super easy to clean, modern design, and can remove the tray and pull right up to the table when they get older.


Chux disposable underpads - we got a huge box of these and used them to line the changing table. When they got dirty we just threw them away. Not very green, but it was really nice to have one less thing to worry about cleaning. We also EC'd, and found it was MUCH easier to get DD to pee on the changing table on the pads vs. a little tiny potty or bowl. So fewer wet diapers to change.


Flutterbug - a little music-making thing to clip to the changing table for distraction. We kept the music off at first and just used it as something to look it, and then as she got older she got interested in pulling the wings off (they just pop back on) and eventually making the music come on by herself. Definitely kept her occupied for many changes.


Moby wrap - DD wasn't a huge fan when really young, but was a lifesaver starting at 4-5 months when she got used to it.


We pretty much exclusively co-slept and wore her, so didn't use the stroller or crib much at all.

post #14 of 35

I have no experience being a mama yet (tons of exp with kids, but it's different when they're YOURS, I think), I'm waiting on stuff like bouncers and swings until I meet the babe in May, but here's what's on my current want/need list:

(guess I should also mention we're in a relatively small apartment and pretty minimalist [quality over quanitity] and crunchy)



  • Carriers - Moby wrap (or similar) for me, Ergo baby with insert for DP (we'll probably get a second Ergo if/when the Moby becomes uncomfortable or too small)
  • no stoller (we HATE strollers with a passion... sorry)
  • no car seat (no car - we walk and take public transportation everywhere, and can rent a seat when we NEED one)



  • cloth diapers - we're probably going to get a sampling of one-size fuzzibunz, bumgenius, bummis, and some pre-folds, maybe the jillian's diaper try cloth for $10? and then probably purchase more of what we like - we'll see how EC is going too ;)
  • wipes - cloth wipes with homemade solution
  • diaper bag - Red Oxx bordeaux gator bag (expensive, but SO worth it) - doesn't look like a "diaper bag" & is usable for decades - HUGE plus for me!
  • changing pad - I like the skip hop pronto changer - will fit in almost any bag, or can be taken around on its own - might need 2 or 3 - one that stays at home, one in my bag, one in DP's bag?
  • wetbag - a MUST for cloth diapering, we liked the designs and reviews of the Planet Wise diaper bag for traveling, plus something larger to go inside a lidded garbage can at home.
  • washing/soaking supplies - debating the sprayer that attaches to toilet and/or a good soak bucket.

we're not planning on using creams/powders/whatever unless there's an issue that requires them - if we do, we'll use burt's bees or another natural product.  Also, we decided a changing table is not necessary - any flat surface covered with a towel and/or changing pad (even my closet dresser drawers!) will do!



  • shirts - about 10 short and 5 long sleeved
  • onesies - probably not so many of these, since we'd like to at least try EC
  • pants - not sure if we even NEED to get these - again, planning on doing EC - baby will be swaddled or running around w/cute diapers or pantsless a lot, we think.
  • PJs - a set or two, hopefully something cute but not gender specific.
  • hats/socks/gloves - a well-meaning friend/relative will most likely give us a cutesy set that includes some, but we weren't planning on buying any until we meet the kid and see if they like them.
  • jackets/sweaters? - a light jacket and/or sweaters might be necessary (5/5 due date), but I'm thinking just rely on swaddling?
  • blankets - we'll need these for swaddling - lots of swaddling!
  • cute outfits - I mean, the kid's going to be adorable on their own, but one or two "prestige" outfits would be cool.

we're still looking for good BOLD and/or gender neutral colors - ruby red, sapphire blue, emerald green, a golden yellow, royal purple, burgundy, black, browns, creams, etc.  gender neutral and no stupid writing/emblems if we can help it. (but I can be a sucker for frogs and monkeys, sesame street and scifi).  Seriously considering just getting a bunch of white cotton ones and dying them colors we love :)



  • BOOBIES! bfinfant.gif (natural breast cream, washable breast pads - no boppy yet - gonna go with what nature intended for now)
  • medela breast pump (PIS or freestyle - still deciding) - DP is going to be doing a lot of the feedings (I'll be a WOHM)
  • glass bottles with silicone nipples - still picking brands. 
  • burp cloths/bibs


bathing/first aid/grooming:

  • extra soft washcloths/towels (I love the towels with built in hoods - teehee!)
  • natural baby wash (don't have a brand picked, but I have a friend who sells natural products for a living - I'm going to hit up her inventory!)
  • showerhead/sprayer on a hose (already in our tub) and/or cup to gently pour water over parts.
  • nasal bulb syringe (included in our birth kit)
  • anal thermometer (already have)
  • natural lotions (will most likely use a coconut/olive oil concoction we mix ourselves)
  • brush/comb/nail clippers - may or may not be needed (might have something we can use already)

Planning on using the sink/dish tub and/or bathing the kiddo with one or both of us in the tub - minimal products for that soft baby skin, and MUST renew infant/baby CPR cert!



  • our bed - we'll have a spot in our room for the kid to sleep if it's necessary (pack'n'play or crib), but co-sleeping just makes sense to us.
  • pack 'n' play - still trying to find one that has minimal plasticky junk and nothing electronic on it... 
  • maaaaybe an IKEA crib that converts to a bed (but not sure if it's necessary OR where we'd put it)


mama care:

  • post-partum pads (cloth for me - I'll probably order from LisaJaney at www.tlc-pads.com where I purchased regular pads several years ago)
  • peri bottle/toilet sprayer (probably want the peri bottle even if we HAVE the toilet sprayer - can pop it in the bag when going out)
  • salves/creams/etc. for healing, stretch marks
  • nursing bras (nipple cream, washable breast pads)
  • nursing tops?
  • music - something calming for breast feeding
  • belly binding supplies
  • books galore - books on: EC, vax, infant swimming, books to read out loud (hobbit & narnia to start the kid off - lol!)
  • daddy to babysit so I can workout (I can't wait to do situps and pushups again - crazy, huh?)


Hmm, I think that's everything... and well, if FEELS minimalist, but when I write it out, it seems like a lot of stuff - lol!

post #15 of 35

I agree with PunkElmo about change tables...we bought an inexpensive wooden dresser and a change pad for the top of it...dipes are in a plastic 3-drawer storage unit in the corner right next to the dresser, and we put in a couple of corner shelves to house wipes, toiletries, etc.  The oldest is now 5.5 years old and that dresser hasn't gone a day without being used (and won't until the kids all move out!).  Cost almost the same new as a change table, but waaaaay more lifespan,

post #16 of 35

A Boppy-type pillow and a Lay Z Boy-type reclining chair.  

post #17 of 35
Thread Starter 

Thanks again guys...so helpul.

post #18 of 35

I really like this for the first few months... 

rocking chair/infant seat - I had a 2 in one combo wear it was a rocker/infant seat and was able to be set onto a swing. I can't find the one I have online anymore though, but mostly my youngest son liked the rocker/infant seat better than the swing. My first son had just a portable swing and that's it until he was around 4 months old.


From 4 months on (or sometimes a little earlier depending on the child), I love a jumperoo! I had an activity center with my first and a jumeroo with my second and the jumperoo was way better in my opinion. This is the one I have... 

precious planet jumperoo

I have the older version and like this new version with a toy bar better by the look of it. 


Then, you may want some clip on the car seat, stroller, or shopping cart toys. Any baby toy that clips on or velcros on will work.


You can just use a blanket with a few little baby toys for tummy time. I really like a wooden teething ring as well.


BFing pillow if you plan to do that.


You may need a high chair or one of those neat fisher price travel booster seats starting around 6 months if you breastfeed. If formula fed, they usually suggest solids earlier because there aren't as many vitamins available in formula? I don't formula feed so you may want to double check that info.


Originally Posted by BeanieC View Post

Is a play yard necessary this early?  A swing?  A bouncer?  High chair?  I have limited space, so I'm not purchasing all these goodies at once..but would like to know what is definitely needed right away.


Here's what I have so far:


Crib and bedding (not using a bassinet due to space limitations)

Car seat w/ universal stroller frame

Stroller for use at 3 months for walks

Baby Carrier


Thank you ladies in advance for your help...first time mother here!!!!!

Edited by dayiscoming2006 - 2/20/11 at 4:00pm
post #19 of 35

oh oh oh...i totally forgot....i would have killed for a really nice reclining glider with ottoman last time. 


now just so you know how amazing they are.....i personally HATE the look of gliders and i hate the idea of a bunch of equipment and didn't ever intend on making a "nursery."


but after just happening to sit on one while watching a football game and having my sleep-fighting infant just fall asleep on top of me (unheard of!) without putting out any effort whatsoever (the good ones really just seem to move all on their own) i had some serious glider envy. i thought i had waited to long and wasted too much time without one to get one but after a couple nights of my toddler's inconsolible crying and having nowhere to sit except the horrendous uncomfortable wooden rocking chair at 3 am....i resolved to get one. got the dream glider on craigslist for only $150. dutalier is the best and i would recommend only getting a reclining model, ottoman is essential, and padded arms are way nice


.and they seem to resell very easily since i had many listings not work out because somebody had literally bought it the very night of the posting on CL.

post #20 of 35

Also recommend "babycomfynose" over a bulb syringe. It works way better. Can find them on amazon.

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