Baby Gear: The good, the bad, & the unnecessary! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 25 Old 05-30-2015, 10:20 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Baby Gear: The good, the bad, & the unnecessary!

I saw a similar thread in another DDC a while ago, I figured we could start one of our own


What do you love?
What are some must have items?
What do you find completely unnecessary?

We're starting over from scratch, we have nothing left over from kiddos 1 & 2 and it's been almost 6 years since I've had to think about baby related items. Going into a store to browse is just kinda overwhelming, things have changed so much!

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#2 of 25 Old 05-31-2015, 07:02 AM
 
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must have items: diapers, baby carrier(s), car seat, bed rail for co-sleeping .. oh and clothes.. I prefer zipper footed sleepers for the early months

completely unnecessary items partly depend on the baby.. some babies hate strollers, some hate swings, some hate bouncers .. with my 4th i made sure to buy a new bouncy seat so i'd have a place to put him down but he did not approve , the floor would have worked just as well ..
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#3 of 25 Old 05-31-2015, 07:25 AM
 
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Great thread idea, @bright-midnight ! By now, I've pared it down to the essentials and nice-to-have items...which is all pretty fresh for me, with a 9mo....lol

- New Mama Bottom Spray...ahhh! (from Earth Mama Angel Baby)
- Clothes (newborn gowns and footy jammies with zippers are the best, nothing with a ton of snaps that drive you crazy trying to line them up with one eye open at 1am)
- Burp cloths
- Receiving blankets / blankets
- Diapers, wipes, etc. Coconut or olive oil for newborn bum - helps meconium slide off easier
- Changing pad for out of the house
- A reasonably sized diaper bag or backpack that doesn't make you feel like a pack mule on expedition
- Toys / crib mobile / play mat / bouncer
- High chair / bibs / bowls / spoons /sippy cups etc. (I love the Nuk Mash & Serve set - makes it easy to smoosh up whatever we're eating!)
- Nipple cream! (I like Motherlove the best)
- Nursing pads / comfy bra (the one I use the most is Motherhood's Seamless Clip-down Nursing Bra)
- Breast pump / bottles (Medela makes a cool new nipple called Calma that avoids nipple confusion/preference - it works great!)
- Car seat with newborn snuzzler
- Ergo Baby carrier

That's pretty much it for me! Anything else I have found totally unnecessary, especially gear that you drag out in public. I like to grab a small bag of essentials & go, instead of lugging around a trunk full of strollers, nursing tents (oh wait, they're called "covers", right?), a 90lb diaper bag you could fit yourself in, etc.

Ok...who's next?
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#4 of 25 Old 05-31-2015, 07:28 AM
 
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Thinking about baby carriers! Best investments ever, assuming they are the ones that work for you. Good thing there are Babywearing meetings in lots of cities that let you try things out in advance. #1 was never the most patient with being back-wrapped, so carrying #1 and #2 at the same time is going to be a challenge. I am not an ssc person (at least yet).
Agree with etsdtm99 that the unnecessary varies from baby to baby and also family to family! We were strict about focusing first on collecting hand-me-downs from friends. Took much pressure off
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#5 of 25 Old 05-31-2015, 07:36 AM
 
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My oldest and 2nd are 10 years apart so baby gear shopping was a little overwhelming, to say the least! I tried to keep the gear to a minimum since it seems like it ends up taking over your whole house.

Loves: the swing! I thought I didn't want a one but ended up getting one when dd was about 8 weeks old and it was the best thing ever!

Must haves for me: an infant bouncer seat/place to put the baby other than the floor (we got a fisher price infant-to-toddler seat and Dd still uses it at 17 months so we'll probably get a second one for this baby.)
A good nursing pillow and lots of comfy nursing tanks.

Unnecessary for us ended up being the bassinet. I had envisioned dd sleeping in it right next to my side of the bed but that never happened. She'd wake up within 10 minutes of being laid down in it. It was pretty handy for throwing all the clean diapers in, though.
Stroller: I love to wear my babies and still don't use a stroller.
A baby bathtub: dh and I took dd in the shower when she was really little. Then when she could sit on her own I used a plastic storage tote in the tub so she had a smaller tub to sit in. Most of the time I still just take her in the shower with me, though.

What I wish we'd gotten: a video monitor. I said we didn't need one, and they're expensive, but I can't count how many times I've wished for one over the past year.

We bought almost everything 2nd hand for much, much less than retail cost and it was all still in new to like new condition. All this stuff is used for such a short time period (or people get all the stuff then don't end up using it) that you can find some really good deals out there.
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#6 of 25 Old 05-31-2015, 01:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Other stuff I remember using a lot:

baby swing
carriers
pack & play
changing table
high chair
swaddle blankets


Useless stuff:
Bumbo seat
infant bath tubs
crib
the "baby" magic bullet - our cheap blender did better!


I'm sure there's more, but like I said it's been a while! So far we haven't purchased much. We've started our cloth diaper stash, two practically brand new carriers (Ergo & Tula), and a few sleepers/onesies. I know the next big purchase(s) will probably be the carseat, pack & play, and a swing. We'd like to knock out one thing per month until baby is born since we're not doing a shower. We'll probably wait until after the first of the year to buy a stroller (it'll be too cold for me to walk outdoors with the baby anyways) as well as holding off on a crib since we'll have the pack & play for naps.


Anyone have any experience with mama cloth?
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#7 of 25 Old 05-31-2015, 04:19 PM
 
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For my first baby, we lived in a tiny one-bedroom walkup in the city, and really had to be minimal in terms of accumulating "baby stuff". We co-slept, so no crib or crib bedding. Our apartment was up several flights of stairs and our neighborhood riddled with crappy sidewalks, so we opted for several carriers over a bulky stroller.

Essentials:
-dipes of some sort, be they cloth or otherwise
-onesies and something warm for a winter baby
-burp cloths, rags, or spare cloth flats
-lactating boobs (maybe some nipple balm, too-- and for me? soft bamboo nursing pads. LOTS of nursing pads)
-a car seat
-love and patience

That's really IT.

But I'll add:
-a few carriers for different looks/purposes. I still have a couple of ring slings I'll use, a woven wrap, and an Ergo. I won a spot to buy a custom Obimama mei tei to add to my stash. I do also now have a BOB stroller for use while running, and I'm unsure of if I'll look for a double. I do A LOT of babywearing for the first 12 months or so.
-a safe spot to put baby while showering/using the toilet
-a great set of nursing bras. I tend to have overactive letdown well after 6 months postpartum, so I wear bras 24/7 pretty much to keep the nursing pads in place. Good bras are essential for me.
-a great diaper bag. This is just the vanity in me, but I love having something pretty that is functional for all the things a baby/toddler needs, but also PRETTY for mama. I use my diaper bag 24/7/365, so I want something I like.
-an uber supportive husband. Man, it's nice to have a dude who can change any diaper at any time without complaint.
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#8 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 12:49 AM
 
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Lots of agreement with what's already been posted! We kept it pretty simple last time and got nearly everything as hand me downs or used.

Essentials for us:
-Wool puddle pad for cosleeping (investment but much cheaper than crib and gear!)
-cloth dipe stash
-wool clothes and warm buntings, etc. we have long cold winters and this will be my second winter baby. I have a minor obsession with wool clothes for kids. Luckily we have access to some great deals through my husbands work. I have a good stash but wil be adding a few key items for the new baby. Anyone else in cold climates?
-variety of carriers (I liked the moby best for the early months, then switched to ergo when baby got too heavy)
-new breast pump, excited to get one through insurance this time. Last time I had one from a friend
-second all the comments on a great nursing bra!!!!! I love my Medela ones

Other nice things:
-swing, given to us and definitely came in handy at certain stages!
-pack and play
-white noise maker

Useless (imo):
-Crib, etc
-Special furniture
-I'll probably be in the minority but onesies irritate me. I wish it were easier to find plain baby tshirts. It gets in the way of ec'ing!!

I never had a baby monitor but thinking one might be useful this time. What are your experiences with them?
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#9 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 06:34 AM
 
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I got some mama cloth last time. Let's see, it was mostly 'natural' materials but not organic cotton - I think that was my compromise for pricing reasons. Why that compromise: I didn't know anyone using them so had to do internet research and that suggested using a bigger size postpartum than you would usually; most sellers label them that way too. So I didn't want to splurge on something I would hardly use. Biochemically they felt better than sposies but physically I was mixed about it because I am small and they were - large. If that makes any sense!
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#10 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 07:37 AM
 
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Originally Posted by AlaskAnne View Post
-I'll probably be in the minority but onesies irritate me. I wish it were easier to find plain baby tshirts. It gets in the way of ec'ing!!

I never had a baby monitor but thinking one might be useful this time. What are your experiences with them?
I've come to find I have a love/hate relationship with onesies. I love them snapping in the crotch because it keeps them from riding up. But I hate them with cloth diapers because they seem to create/cause leaking and wicking. It almost impossible to find just t-shirts for babies though. Especially if you want something other than white. A lot of times I'll just cut off the bottom part of the onesie. They're knit fabric so they don't fray, but if I'm really feeling productive I'll put a new hem on it.

Monitors: we have a $30 vtech one we picked up at walmart. It's audio only and it works just fine for its purpose. However, I wish we'd splurged on a video monitor. We don't cosleep and there have been countless times I'll hear my dd awake in her crib so I go to get her. If she's standing up then she's done sleeping and ready to get up. If she's still laying down then she's more than likely going to go back to sleep. However, if I open her door and she sees me it's all over. She's up and cranky because she's still tired.

I'm usually the minority in any of the parenting groups I'm in, but cosleeping does not work for me. I'm a light sleeper as it is so I get almost no sleep when I have a baby in bed with me. I don't even like having to share a bed with dh. But, I also don't like dragging myself out of bed multiple times a night to nurse a newborn, so we'll cosleep the first few months. This time I want to get an arms reach cosleeper. With dd2 we sidecarred the crib around 3 months and I liked that she had her own sleeping space but was still right there next to me. But, I don't like how much room the crib takes up. Hopefully that's something we can pick up 2nd hand.

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#11 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 08:23 AM
 
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I've gotten fewer & fewer baby items, the more babies I've had. Our last baby was our 3rd girl in a row & the girl clothes are looking sad, when she hit 12 months I began putting her in 4 yr. old tshirts for around the house. Necessaries for us are


onesies/ pants or baby legs
diapers/wipes/snappis/wraps/wet bags
blankets
bath ramp.


Nice to haves included my biggest splurge last time; a dedicated changing station. I don't know why I waited until baby #4 to set it up. I have a changing mat on my dresser, the pail beside it & the diaper organizer bolted to the wall. It was/is sooo convenient, also as newborn exam station for husband during her birth. I am switching exclusively to flatfolds this baby, they're just easier to clean in my situation.
I also have a carrier to wear baby in, I was up a week later cooking for my friend 2x a week. It's a Snugli, not the usual type that has praises sung on MDC, but it works for me.
I do use our bassinet for the first 6 months.
I would LOVE a new stroller, my wheels have no tread & the restraining straps have frayed off. I secure toddler in w/ a sisters jump rope, but we just look like hillbillies. The stroller is mostly for when I'm hanging laundry or in the garden, it's embarrassing to take it to town or the park.


I've used cloth for the last 10 years & w/ 5 EBF babies it wasn't/ isn't used often enough to wear out but I just keep a stack of brown washcloths underneath the sink & fold it into long quarters. It's very discreet when hanging on the clothesline & is very comfortable/ absorbent. I received a Divacup as a gift but only got to use it 1 cycle before catching this baby, I still need to figure it out for night time, but it was also comfortable.
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#12 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 08:52 AM
 
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I long ago decided that simpler is better for us. You really don't need that much to take care of a baby.

Essentials:
Diapers
Ring sling
swaddling blankets
At least one breast

Useful:
Wool covers,
a few AIOs
T shirts, usually made from onesies.

Useless: almost everything else
Ds was a very grumpy baby and we used swings extensively for him. They were a real sanity saver. But once he outgrew them we were rocking/bouncing him on the bed for hours to get him to sleep. I don't have space for swings, bouncers, cribs or changing tables this time, so we'll just default to the things we DO have. Arms and patience (sometimes).

ETA: OH and diaper bags. I have had (a probably irrational) hate of diaper bags since my cousins were born when I was 11. I keep spares in the car and we change as needed. The dirties go home and the spares are refilled on the next outing. If I NEED to take one with me, it goes in a pocket, or purse, or a bag we would otherwise be taking.
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#13 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 03:45 PM
 
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We saved everything from DS so we don't need much. I do want to get newborn size cloth diapers since we used disposables at that stage last time; waiting to buy them from a coop in a month or two. I really want a 4th laundry basket since there will be 4 of us and I'm already laundering hand me downs we've been given. Mostly I think of things like, oh we'll need a 4th pool towel since we go swimming at lot, etc. my mom got me an antique secretary desk for Mother's Day to use as a changing station (and then will become my desk) and store all the diapers in.

Useful:
Cloth diapers
Baby carrier
I didn't use the stroller much, but then we travelled so I used it in the airport, etc
muslin blankets
A pretty, wide scarf in lieu of a nursing cover, also doubles as blanket if you need one
A bouncy seat to put baby in when I use the restroom
Bed rail, matress cover for our bed


Useless
The crib and everything with it, we got rid of it. Oh I guess I have the mattress under our bed for the toddler to sleep on when we have company
Stuffed animals,we got many as presents
I had cloth nursing pads but never used them
Noise machine, we use a fan or a free app on the phone
Baby shoes, babies don't walk. Socks are good tho
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#14 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 04:37 PM
 
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@Voondrop , did you use the diva cup for postpartum? I was so ginger with everything down there & didn't even touch except with water and sitz tea - wouldn't have thought to use the cup!
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#15 of 25 Old 06-01-2015, 07:20 PM
 
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@Voondrop , did you use the diva cup for postpartum? I was so ginger with everything down there & didn't even touch except with water and sitz tea - wouldn't have thought to use the cup!
No, I used for my Feb 15' cycle... & that's all of the practice I got w/ it. I don't plan on using until after the first week postpartum, depending on flow color & clots-be-gone. What button do you hit to @ highlight a name? I haven't figured that out yet.


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#16 of 25 Old 06-02-2015, 09:50 AM
 
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This is our 3rd, but we have no baby stuff since its been 7 years so we are starting anew. But I know what we want and need and don't this time. Here is my list.

Needs: Diapers, clothes, swaddling blankets (miracle blankets are my favorite, I want 2 this time), boppy or other nursing pillow, moby wrap for newborn (ergo for older), diaper bag, good waterproof mattress cover (we cosleep), bouncy chair (no frills, and a model I can bounce with my foot, this was the only way I could sit down and eat a lot of times), burp rags, blankets, wash cloths and cloth wipes, nursing bras and nursing pads (most of the time I just stuffed wash cloths in there), nose frida or other snot sucker, baby finger nail clippers, diaper cream, coconut oil or other oil you like for skin/rash/meconium, car seat.

Other wants and things we will need later: pack n play, nice swinging baby gate for the top of our stairs, bibs, teething toys, stroller, high chair. I've never had a cold weather newborn so I kind of want one of those cozy things you can cover your car seat with, but I'm also not one to go out with a newborn a lot either so I don't know if its worth it.

Didn't need: most of the things, we had a swing - didn't use it, most of the baby toys we didn't use, things like the bumbo, baby play mats, etc I think are unnecessary, our son did use one of those jumper seat things a lot, we never used a monitor, my first would never take a bottle so pumping was totally out of the question. I expressed by hand the few times I needed a little milk for something. I liked the baby bathtub with the hammock in it, but its used for such a short time and its definitely not a must. So much just depends on personal preference and the personality of your baby too.
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#17 of 25 Old 06-02-2015, 11:47 AM
 
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@Voondrop , I'm not sure how to do it the right way - could have sworn that I've seen people do it without the '@' symbol attached. I'm just doing @name - no space between the @ & the username.
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#18 of 25 Old 06-03-2015, 06:21 AM
 
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Wild, ok thanks. I did an @name on another post & nothing happened. I probably put a space in or something.


Yay!


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My diaper bag is actually a Petunia Picklebottom adventure tote. I looooove it. It looks like a cute purse but keeps everything nice and organized.
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#20 of 25 Old 06-06-2015, 03:56 AM
 
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Originally Posted by bright-midnight View Post
I saw a similar thread in another DDC a while ago, I figured we could start one of our own


What do you love?
What are some must have items?
What do you find completely unnecessary?

We're starting over from scratch, we have nothing left over from kiddos 1 & 2 and it's been almost 6 years since I've had to think about baby related items. Going into a store to browse is just kinda overwhelming, things have changed so much!
I have used a pouch sling for all of our kids, got our first in 2004. Sounds like they have had a fall from grace but I am still searching for one. Considering something like a Tula but they are so expensive! Hate to spend that much on what will most likely be our last baby.
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#21 of 25 Old 05-15-2017, 03:58 AM
 
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Must haves

Ive just had my first child baby Joshua and I had trouble getting him settled

The best thing I ever bought was a snuggle blanket. I got an elephant one but there are many type available

I found a brilliant site that offer all the stuff I needed think it was called HoneyBabies

honeybabies.co.uk
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Hello to all I am Melissa Paul and I have joined this community recently to grab some information about baby products.
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Hello to all I am Melissa Paul and I am new to this group and I would like to grab some info regarding baby products.
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#24 of 25 Old 05-26-2020, 10:18 PM
 
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The sound machine we received at the baby shower was completely useful for us. It was too loud and the baby couldn't fall asleep. One of the most useful things was the soother and I highly recommend it.
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As a mom of two, I can say that the magnetic sleepers and the pacifiers are a must. Of course, you need a stroller, a car seat, a diaper bag, wipes, and many other things. It's not a specific list because you don't know what will work for you and there is always something you'll need to buy. I found help and information on https://mommyhood101.com/best-baby-products-overall because I was also confused and overwhelmed by the multitude of products on the market. My advice is to read reviews and buy good quality products, I think this is the most important.
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