BABY REGISTRY TIPS?

I feel like I’m in this weird stage of pregnancy where I don’t really know what I’m supposed to be doing to get ready for the baby (besides the usual eating healthy, working out, getting enough sleep, etc.). A month ago it felt way too soon to start working on a baby registry but recently two sweet friends have offered to host baby showers and I suddenly feel behind! It doesn’t help that all the baby apps (which I rely on to tell me very important facts like our baby being the size of an artichoke this week…) are urging me to “start baby-proofing while I have the energy!” when we’re still hoping to buy a house either before or just after the baby arrives and baby-proofing is just about the last thing on my mind.

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All that to say I’ve finally started working on our baby registry over the past couple weeks with a lot of help from girlfriends who thankfully know way more than I do. It’s been surprisingly a lot of fun and unsurprisingly a little overwhelming to research all the different gear we’ll need for our firstborn. And since I know there are lots of smart and stylish moms reading here, I’d love your two cents as well! There are just so many decisions that I know so little about… Like do we need a Dockatot? (I have friends who swear by it; my mom says it looks like a life raft and can’t imagine when you’d use that over a baby bouncer.) Is a heart-rate-monitoring sleep sock the ultimate peace of mind or an over-the-top invention for panicked first-time moms? 😂 I’m exaggerating but you catch my drift — it’s so easy to get carried away when you’re starting at square one! So if you have a stroller you’re obsessed with (nearly every one of my mom friends has recommended this one) or a brand of baby monitors or bottles or onesies you can’t live without, I am all ears. I know a bunch of you are expecting little ones around the same time so hopefully any recommendations will help more than just this mom-to-be!

70 thoughts on “BABY REGISTRY TIPS?

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  1. Less is more! Your baby will decide what he likes 🙂 You will need a sound machine for sure and a Bjourn Baby Bouncer. Things like bottles (have a couple, different brands) and swaddles are so individual and we spent so much money trying out what would work for our little guy. I bought the Dockatot and returned it when I read the instructions. It seems like a pricey thing that could potentially be dangerous; just get a boppy lounger. I have a 19 month old little boy. It’s so much fun! Congratulations!!

  2. Yay! So excited for you…boys are the best! We bought the Owlet when my son was 5 days old and I was in a total hormonal, postpartum, sleep-deprived panic. Life changing! It gave me such peace of mind and was worth every penny. We didn’t do the Dockatot and never missed it. We love our Baby Jogger City Mini GT stroller, and I would say a diaper genie or something similar is a must. We gave up on the blanket swaddles after a few days because who can ever get those snug enough? Velcro and zipper swaddles are the way to go! And the Marpac Dohm white noise machine is the best ever…and we tried a lot. Lastly, I would totally recommend Babylist for registering. It’s so easy and you register pretty much anywhere online. So convenient! Hope that helps! 🙂

  3. First of all, CONGRATULATIONS! I’ve been following along for a few years now and am so happy for you and Will. I am a fellow Bucknell alum (Class of ’92) and a “veteran mom” in that my kids are 15 and 17 years old. I have to say that reading all of the comments made my head hurt. So much stuff, half of which I had to google to know what everyone was talking about. From experience, and for what it’s worth, less really is more. Your baby will let you know what works best for him. That said, the Boppy is a classic and useful for breastfeeding (if that works for you and your baby) as well as when he is just learning to sit up. A good stroller is worth the investment. We found BabyGap (no affiliation) clothes to be cute, affordable and super functional. They know how to design with ease of getting on and off a squirmy baby/toddler. Go out to dinner and to the movies as much as possible before the baby is born. It might be some time before you can do either of those things the same way again. Trust your instincts. Enjoy every moment because it will fly by. As the author Gretchen Rubin wrote, “The days are long but the years are short.” That is beyond true. As I go on college visits with my 17 year old I can still picture him the day he was born, on his first birthday and his first day of kindergarten and am amazed that we are where we are. It really seems like just last week so take in every moment and milestone. Congrats again and I wish you all the best.

  4. We have neither the Owlet or the dock – my daughter loves her Boppy lounger though, and I love that it was a fraction of the price of the dockatot! My little one is only one month, but so far the Boppy lounger and Halo sleep sack swaddles are our must-haves. Oh, and don’t believe the hype about Honest diapers — they’re terrible! Huggies all the way, worth every penny. Congratulations on your pregnancy! I can honestly say it only gets better with every day she’s here 🙂

  5. Our little guy just turned a week and although we have tons of things, just a few simple things that really make a difference right now! We love the halo bassinet, easy to check on him anytime we’re worried or he fusses. We also keep a pack and play out in the living room for a safe sleeping spot (technically a lot of the products that aren’t hard/flat aren’t sleep approved). He loves the boppy newborn lounger if we’re hanging out on the couch. We also needed to get more newborn onesies and zip up sleep and play outfits with the mittens after he was born, it’s crazy how many outfits they go through!

  6. I just had my second and I agree with the comments that less is more. We had so much STUFF with the 1st that we never used. One of my friends gave me these for my shower and they were amazing! https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000FCYGGC/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o09_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
    We put them on the changing table so we could just toss and add a new one when the baby went to the bathroom everywhere (as opposed to constantly washing the changing pad). I keep them in the car and in my purse so I can change the baby literally anywhere.

    Also – diaper bag I LOVE is Fawn Design. https://fawndesign.com/collections/the-original-collection/products/the-original-brown They are the BEST for organizing all things baby and look cute on top of it! We travel a lot, so the backpack option is key for keeping hands free for me to wrangle my 2 year old and baby through security (and at grocery stores, parks, while shopping…) LOVE their bags!

  7. One more I forgot to add on Insta – I know they say to pre-wash baby clothes, but I kept the tags on a LOT of stuff we got as long as possible, and returned the things I didn’t end up using (that sounds so heartless, because of course they were thoughtful gifts from other people, but I’m pretty sure the givers want their gifts to be useful, so hopefully they were all okay with me sending some things back and buying things I realized I needed later). Our son was born mid-March, so we were prepared for cold weather if it was a long spring, or hot weather if spring turned to summer by April. It turned hot quickly and he grew so fast, he didn’t end up wearing some of his cold-weather stuff, so returning it and buying that different brand of sleep sack, or whatever we needed was great.

  8. My baby will be 4 months next week and these have been some of our essentials:
    Halo Bassinest if baby will be sleeping in your room)
    Sound machines- Hatch for his room and Hushh portable
    Leachco pod (like a Boppy) was a lifesaver those first few weeks and we still use it
    OXO wipes dispenser
    Wipeable changing pad – we have the Skiphop one
    Lots and lots of burp cloths and feeding bibs. We live the Aden & Anais because they snap around baby
    Baby Bjorn bouncer
    Uppababy MESA and Cruz
    Playmat
    Swaddles and bottles will be trial and error (we liked Halo swaddles and Comotomo bottles)
    Many insurance companies give you pumps for free – check with yours

    I agree with some of the other comments to borrow big items. I thought my baby needed new everything but now I wish I had borrowed some things because it’s a lot of trial and error because each baby is different.

    This is such an exciting time! Don’t stress and enjoy it 🙂

  9. Congratulations! Totally know the overwhelmed feeling, but also SO fun. I love just reading all the recs in this post. A few thoughts:
    UppaBaby Vista – The majority of people I know love it, but I also know a fair number who just weren’t fans, so I don’t think it’s the end all, be all for everyone. I ended up with the Nuna DemiGrow because I liked the Nuna Pipa car seat better than the UppaBaby Mesa (safer and overall I heard better things – again most people I know allied the Mesa, but I knew a few who said their baby couldn’t get comfortable in it), and not applicable to your situation, but I have twins and didn’t like that the second seat was smaller than the first. If I just had one baby, I think I may have gone with the Vista or maybe even looked at the Minu (I love how compact and light it is)!
    Loveverly playmat – is probably one of my most used baby items. Again I think it a little bit has to do with my twins (easy to put them both down there), but I still think I would like it with one. Also, my girls spent some time in NICU, and the Occupational Therapist there said this is a great brand for age appropriate development.
    Snoo – I love it for my girls because this was the only way we could get them to sleep on a flat sleep approved surface originally. However, for other babies who are better steppers, I am not sure it necessitates the price. Plus when it speeds up, it still kind of throws me off a little even though I am sure it is safe.
    Dockatot- I didn’t get it because I knew I wouldn’t feel totally comfortable with sleeping in something not approved for safe sleep, but I know a lot of moms and babies who love it, and it works for them.
    Owlet smart sock – we don’t have even though I thought about it at the beginning. It may be nice for peace of mind, but I do think you get comfortable with your baby pretty quickly, so after a little, I was glad I didn’t drop $600 on two.
    Bottles – even though I hate all the pieces, my girls and I like Dr. Browns the most. We didn’t like Comotomo or Smilo as much. I know a lot of people really like the Comotomo, but as a quick note, the Occupational Therapist mentioned they didn’t like the nipple as it promoted a shallow latch. Again though, I know babies who really like them, so if it works, it works!
    Pumping – if you are pumping at all, definitely a hands free bra is life changing. I like the Bravado one as it just clips onto your nursing bra, and you do not fully have to change bras. Also, Spectra over Medela pump. I think the closed system is MUCH more hygienic (I have seen some gross pictures of Medela pumps other than the hospital grade growing mold), and I actually like the Spectra pump just as much as the Medela hospital grade one. Since getting my Spectra though, I have also heard some really good things about the Baby Buddha, and I would definitely consider that one if I was looking now.
    Clothes – I bought some expensive ones, and I kind of regret it (other than for special occasions). Baby clothes get gross quickly, and they grow out of them quickly as well! H&M has some cute cheaper baby clothes.
    Good luck!!

    1. I second the Spectra! I’m on month 8 of pumping and haven’t had any issues at all with the pump.

  10. I’m due in June and I decided not to register for a bunch of stuff. I don’t want a bunch of unnecessary clutter in my house.I did not register for the dockatot or the owlet monitor. I am planning on purchasing the Lovevery play mat. I would recommend ordering your furniture as soon as you make a decision on it. My dresser from Pottery Barn Kids was on back order until July when I ordered it two months ago. Luckily it is actually coming on Friday of this week. I also would recommend registering for any classes you plan on taking. We actually have to do our labor class on line, because we waited too long to register.

  11. Such joyous news, congratulations!

    I think you will love following this instagram: montessoriinreallife

  12. We bought the Owelet a few weeks after my daughter was born because I felt so anxious (she was born with a cleft palate which complicated things a bit). Anyways, it was fine, but I don’t think you need one unless you have special circumstances. It is nice because it’s the same monitoring as the hospital has, but a bit overkill. Also, getting the sock on and accidentally setting it off can be a bit overwhelming in the sleep deprived newborn stage.

  13. I am a CT mom of three kids, the youngest being 2 yrs old now. My advise is to not go too nuts with the ‘stuff’. Things that people swore by were often expensive junk to me. A few recos from me include (1) baby sleepers that only have zippers. Snaps are the worst, esp at 3am diaper changes. (2) dim-able ceiling lighting in baby room so that you don’t have to flip on the lights fully in the middle of the night and bedtime mood setting. (3) clip on high chair seat. We were surprised how much we used this in our house, brought to other people’s houses when visiting (4) hands free bra for pumping. The picture of the model wearing the bra will have you laughing!
    Today seven years ago i gave birth to my first baby (Billy) and I really can not believe how fast it all has gone!

    Bess (Fairfield)

  14. Another vote for the UppaBaby Vista! We now have the MINU as our travel stroller and are equally obsessed with that.

    Borrowing gear like the swing, bouncer, play mat etc is great if at all possible because the window of use is so narrow (and thus used gear is typically in perfect shape).

    Not a necessity but I loved the prints of Little Unicorn swaddles, bibs, and sleep sacks. Super chic!

  15. I really don’t think you need to stress or even think about baby proofing. My children are all teenagers now and two are away at school. When they were little and we went to playgroup so many moms had ridiculous baby proofing going on, gates around plants, gates in every doorway, foam edging in everything possible. We laughed because their houses looked ridiculous. You don’t need to worry until your baby is mobile and see what activity level and curiosity your child has and then add what is necessary. We found very minimal was needed because we were attentive every second and taught them what they could and couldn’t do. Don’t stress, take it as it comes with your child.

  16. We love our Bugaboo Donkey. It’s worth every penny and then some! It’s comparable to the Vista, but it is much easier to steer and much more balanced with two kids. I have multiple friends who sold their Vistas and got the donkey once they had their second because it was too hard to steer!

    Other than that, the only must have items are Hanna Andersson sleepers (they wash better than any others. I pack them up once they’re too small, and they still look brand new) and zutano booties (only ones that actually stay on).

  17. I have a baby boy that just turned 7 months! I tried to go very minimalist and not buy too much before he was born because so many people told me that every baby has such specific preferences, that it’s all trial and error. So with that said I highly recommend being open to any hand me downs that are not a safety issue! I was lucky enough to get some high-priced items from friends whose kids had grown out of them, and inevitably my son didn’t like them anyway! But here are the things we bought that I recommend to all new moms-

    1 A good baby monitor – I was able to snag the iBaby M7 during last year’s Nordstrom Anniversary sale and we love it. You can literally see the baby breathing, which sounds crazy, but is so helpful for peace of mind.
    2. Onesies with zippers – since my son was an October baby he hardly wore “real clothes” for the first few months since I didn’t want to go out in the cold (I’m also in Fairfield County). We always preferred the onesies with zippers rather than snaps because they’re easier…and it was a bonus if they zipped from the bottom (like Old Navy’s do).
    3. A bottle trial pack – Babylist sells a set of a few different branded bottles so you can try them all out and figure out what you like before going all in on one brand. Most of my friends recommended Dr. Brown’s or Como Tomo, but our baby likes Philips Avent!
    4. Buy a good “first aid” set before you need one – I highly recommend investing in a good (easy) thermometer, the nose frieda, saline spray, etc. before you need it. You don’t want to have to run out to a 24 hour Walmart at 3 AM when you’re worried about your baby!

    We also have the UppaBaby Mesa and Cruz (the Vista felt too big for us) and love it.

  18. I have a few thoughts for you. I did an insane amount of gear research, thought I had everything I needed, and still found myself on Amazon at 2am during a feeding making urgent purchases! So, for what it’s worth, here you go:
    -Lucie’s List. This at least narrows the playing field a bit and gives you a place to start in all the major categories.
    -I 100% agree with the fact that your baby may like or dislike all of the things that others swear by. Register for 1 of this swaddle and one of that, for instance, and just try them out. You will quickly find what works and be making midnight-feeding Amazon purchases on the regular. My son hated the Mamaroo and everyone else’s seem to love it.
    -Don’t babyproof now, especially since you’re looking to move. We didn’t start until it was clear that it was time and we hired a professional. It seemed costly at the outset but then we agreed it was some of the best $$ we spent. What he did in a few hours would have taken us at least 2 full weekends and it still probably would have been terribly installed!
    -I love my Uppababy Cruz. A friend of mine who already had 2 kids when I was pregnant with my first warned me against getting a double stroller for 1 baby. She cautioned that (a) you don’t know how far apart your kids will be age-wise and (b) you have no idea if an in-line style double will work for you. The Vista is awesome and the wheels are pretty great, but for in an out of the cart, the Cruz is lighter weight. You WILL end up with multiple strollers so don’t even try to think you will find the ONE that suits every need. We have the Cruz in the car, the Thule Urban Glide for walks and jogs, and the Contours Bitsy for travel. I LOVE them all and have Lucie’s List to thank.
    -Final thought: Get some cute SUPER LIGHTWEIGHT inexpensive pajamas that button in the front for the first few weeks you are home. No one tells you about the hormonal night sweats but they are FO’ REAL! I went through a new pair of PJs every night for several weeks while my hormones readjusted. Between the night sweats and breast milk leakage, you’ll be doing a lot of mama-pajama laundry. Target was my go-to because they are super soft and super cheap.

  19. My “baby” just turned 9 😳 but I totally agree with the less is more school of thought. One big trick – don’t register for too many multiples of anything – bottles, pacifiers, sleep sacks, etc. because no matter how many people swear by something – your baby may make a totally different decision! I remember returning so many bottles. Get TONS of basic cloth diapers – the white kind – even if you don’t plan to cloth diaper because they are amazing for baby messes! We used them as burp clothes, under her when we changed her, etc etc etc. I was never without 2-3 clean ones! Borrow things like swings or bassinets if you can to try out before you buy. Most of all, enjoy this time – it’s so fun!! I stressed so much about stuff I didn’t need to. You can always return/switch/purchase additional once you know what works for you. Good luck! Oh, and ask for books for your shower with personal notes – they are so meaningful!!

  20. I honestly don’t feel like any one item was am absolute *must*, it’s more about figuring out what works for you. We got a bunch of swaddles but still had to buy some ourselves because our guy was a total wiggler. So I would register for a couple different brands for the small things, but also have a little baby nest egg of money ready to buy some things yourself. For big things like the stroller and bassinet or crib, I would go to the store and try them all out. That was especially helpful for the stroller because when I found the one it was like everything in my brain clicked and said “Yes! This will work for us!” Otherwise there’s just too few shades of difference between items.

  21. Hello!
    My daughter is 19 months old and I feel like we learned quick what you do and don’t need those first
    Few weeks!
    1. Register for taking Cara babies online sleep training course, it isn’t CIO and it is incredible!
    2. Woombie swaddles
    3. Mamaroo (people may judge but our baby slept in it for the first month, it was a lifesaver!)
    4. Owelet gave us priceless peace of mind
    5. Dockatot was amazing for transition to crib along with zip swaddles
    6. Rent hospital grade pump if you plan on breast feeding
    7. Milkies trays for freezing milk in 2oz portions in gallon bags labeled by week
    8. TONS of burp cloths (like two dozen 😂)
    9. H&M conscious kimono snap onesies (she lived in these!!)
    10. OXO baskets to wash bottle parts and anything else in dishwasher to sanitize
    11. Bugaboo donkey stroller (sooo wonderful and worth the money if you love going on walks)
    12. Dr browns bottles (if you pump/use formula and bottle feed plan on going through a lot and having enough to get through a whole day..8-10 4oz bottles in the beginning and then 8 or so of the 8oz bottles for later!)
    13. Peanut or bumbo changing pad
    14. You won’t want to think about what’s for lunch and dinner the first few weeks so ask for gift cards to your fave takeout spots or plan ahead with family and friends for who is helping with meals (dropping off or coming to hold baby while your prep and eat) each evening (typically witching hour will fall during dinner!)
    Sorry for the novel! Be prepared to learn as you go and ask for help (hard for type A mamas but it will save you!)
    So excited for you!!!

  22. I tried not to fall into all the “must need” baby items. There are way too many “can’t live without” items. My daughter, Rory, is now 17 months old. I’ll list out a few of our favorites. UppaBaby Vista is THE best! The quality is unbeatable. I got SO much use out of my Copper Pearl carseat/nursing cover. We now cannot sleep without a sound machine. She can still fit in the ErgoBaby 360 carrier. Rory came out about 3 weeks early, and I would have never slept if we didn’t have the Owlet.

  23. I’m in the process of finalizing my registry (baby due in June) so I can’t personally speak to how the products perform (yet!). I used Babylist for my registry. It allows you to aggregate from various sites so you can register for products from whatever site you want but it’s all housed in one registry- super easy! Plus they email you when you have a gift on the way, if things are out of stock or the prices change. I’ve used TheNightLight as a resource for product recos. It’s overwhelming but pick what feels right for you and your family!

  24. Congratulations. I have a 5 month old daughter and I have a top 5 things I tell every new mom to get/register for.

    1. Sound machines. We have the Hatch for her nursery and rohm portable that we keep in the diaper bag/use for traveling.

    2. Hatch baby grow scale and changing pad. We bought this one month in and it is by far my favorite baby item. I am nursing so I use it to determine how many ounces my baby is eating by weighing her before and after a feeding. I also weigh her every Monday so we can track her growth. I would recommend waiting to use it until after you have gotten into a feeding routine with your baby. I think it can cause anxiety in the first couple of weeks if you stress about how much your newborn is eating/weight gaining.

    3. Snuggle Me Organic Lounger (similar to dock a tot) this was a lifesaver the first month and we still use it now (usually when I need to fold laundry, I place her in it on my bed as a safe space)

    4. Haaka. If you plan to nurse, I recommend getting two of these. They catch the letdown on the other boob while nursing, which is great in the beginning when you could possibly have an oversupply. I currently use them as pumps in the morning while getting ready.

    5. Bounce seat. This is great to move into any room of the house. We have one upstairs and one downstairs.

    There are so many baby things that it is definitely overwhelming, especially since you do not know what your baby will like. I recommend borrowing things if you can. We borrowed a mommaroo, boppy lounger, and bassinet. My daughter ended up not liking any of those items. She also didn’t like the rock n play which so many people used to swear by. Get the basics and borrow what you can! You got this!

  25. Agree with all the comments on the “less is more” approach. In my opinion a good stroller is worth every single penny. I registered for the City Mini GT because my mother in law was buying it for us and was horrified at the price of the Vista. But then when we had a second baby we had to buy a whole new stroller and the Vista would have accommodated two kids so…I recommend you learn from my mistake and spend the money up front. The other item I found super helpful was the SkipHop portable changing station. I kept one in the car with a spare outfit at all times just in case. And then had a second one to pop in any bag/backpack to make it a diaper bag. Super helpful. Spring for the OXO portable wipes dispenser to replace the one included with the SkipHop though. It totally seems like a waste of money but the wipes don’t dry out and something about the design prevents you from pulling out too many wipes at a time. I have also loved the Baby Bjorn portable crib-much easier to set up and lighter weight than a pack & play.

    You are his mom and you will always know best. If it helps-take the advice (friends, family, apps-whatever) but if something doesn’t work for you or doesn’t feel right to you-trust your gut.

    1. Love your comment but as a mom of an only, I have to say that I LOVED my City Mini. It is so easy to open and close and weighs nothing versus other strollers that handle as well. We also had the big Britax (8 years ago so I can’t remember the model) and it was great, but I never touched it again after we got our Mini.

      1. Totally fair point! I actually ended up absolutely loving the City Mini too-so much so that I bought the double version when our second was born (which I do not like at all!). Also-I apologize for automatically assuming the ability to convert a stroller would be a consideration. Insensitive (and dumb) of me.

        1. Not insensitive at all! It is a very valid point, I just jumped in the convo because of my love of the Mini. Totally unrelated story…My MIL and I were Christmas shopping when I was 8 months along and we witnessed a woman have the most epic meltdown EVER with her BOB in the middle of Anthropologie. I had already ordered my Britax and Britax car seat (a brand we stuck with for all future car seats) but had my heart set on the BOB as my second (If Uppababy existed back then, it was not on my radar- BOBs were IT even for mall trips where I live). We were horrified and saw that as a situation I would get myself into and a response that I would have. Needless to say that my MIL had to pay monster return shipping to send back a BOB that was supposed to be a surprise. A few months later we were out shopping and saw a woman rock her City Mini with one hand like a pro and my MIL ordered one on her phone not even 2 minutes later. Thank you for reading my crazy!!

  26. My son will be 2 in August. I’m a minimalist at heart so started out not wanting a bunch of stuff in my house. In addition to that, we signed the contract to build a house while I was in the hospital in labor so I didn’t want to pack/move more stuff and we didn’t bother with baby proofing until we moved (around 10 months old).

    Mine was/is a squirmy thing, so I didn’t feel safe with a lot of the swaddles. We ended up using and loving the Woombie… I would recommend at least 2 so you have a backup after middle of the night accidents.

    While I loved WaterWipes as someone else suggested, they weren’t tessellated (I don’t know if that’s the right word here… they didn’t overlap) so they never came out of top of the wipe warmer. We ended up having to open the whole lid each time, so we switched to Pampers Sensitive.

    I would also skip a dedicated bassinet and just use the top of the pack and play if you’re room sharing.

    We had the Boppy nursing pillow but he always slid into the space between the pillow and my body. I had the My Brest Friend but couldn’t get comfortable with it in the hospital or on the couch. Once I used it in the nursing chair in our bedroom though, feeding time was totally changed!

    The Medela app is awesome for tracking nursing, pumping, feeding, diapers, and sleep. It’s not fancy, but it had everything I needed.

    Ditto to a wipeable changing pad (we just got the cheap Summer Infant one and left a cover off), Lucie’s List for recommendations, and the Boppy Lounger for setting him down on the couch or kitchen countertop while you’re cooking/washing bottles.

  27. I have a nine month old daughter and these have been our tried and true favorites and some missteps!
    1. Nose Frieda–I know disgusting but a try lifesaver when she has been sick.
    2. Angelcare Bath Tub–Affordable and helps when you are recovering and don’t want to be bending over holding him in the tub. .
    3. Uppababy Mesa and Cruz–easy to use and honestly just great. Only wish we would’ve gotten the Vista for the bassinet and ability to fit two kids.
    4. Owlet–did not get before the baby was born because seemed unnecessary but we ended up getting on day two because we were so freaked by SIDS and being new parents. The piece of mind allowed us to sleep way better. Highly recommend if you are Type A!
    5. Pumping bras and rent a hospital grade pump for the beginning to help with supply!
    6. Boom Lawn for drying all things baby related and our daughter did best with Dr. Brown’s bottles.
    7. Don’t need sanitizer because 1) boiling water and 2) most dishwashers have sanitize function.
    8. Monitor with a separate screen because we wanted to be able to pass it off to other caregivers and we didn’t want to have to have our phones on us all the time.
    9. Register for stuff for down the road like a high chair (stokke) and a convertible car seat!
    10. White noise machine for room and on the go
    11. Tubby Todd All Over Ointment–miracle worker on sensitive baby skin!
    12. Nail grinder because trimming a babies nails is terrifying!
    13. OXO Wipes Dispenser–I didn’t think this was necessary until we got it and it is awesome.
    14. Snoo–Our daughter is a great sleeper. I also liked that she slept in our room with us in it but had her own space. I don’t think it is necessary but we felt it was worth it to get it now so any future kids could also use it.

    1. This is a great list! I could go on and on about the pumping bras and hospital-grade pump, too. That’s definitely a great recommendation.

  28. We skipped the Dock-a-tot and used a Boppy lounger – more cost effective since they grow out of it so fast! Plus depending on your house layout it might be better to have more options. I had the Boppy lounger in the living room, a bouncer in the kitchen on the other side of the house, etc. so I wasn’t hauling things around the house while also holding, you know, my actual baby.
    We did get the Halo Bassinest which I wasn’t sure about but ending up LOVING. It was SO nice to have baby at my level right next to my bed those first weeks. Also loved the Halo swaddles and Swaddle me Velcro swaddles. And highly recommend TakingCaraBabies sleep class.
    Ultimately just do what feels right to you and ignore everyone else’s advice (mine included!) the earlier you learn to do this the smoother your transition into motherhood will be! Congrats!!!

  29. It can be quite overwhelming! I was in your shoes last summer. I hardly ever used our DockATot — I found its $30 counterpart, the Boppy Baby Lounger, much more useful. The Boppy Lounger props them up a bit more which is key; infants eat basically all day long, and with a DockATot, they’re flat on their back (vomit city, with my now 7 month old daughter! Imagine laying flat yourself after eating). A few other things we have really loved:

    – UppaBaby Mesa & Vista set (you’ll want the car seat to click into a stroller. I overlooked this and now unnecessarily have two v expensive strollers
    – Nanit baby monitor
    – Keekaroo Peanut Changer (it quickly wipes down, as opposed to absorbent changing pads)
    – BabyBjorn bouncer seat
    – Stokke Tripp Trapp high chair
    – Skip Hop activity gym (the floor mat) plus the Skip Hop activity center
    – Little Nomad playmat

    They need so few “things” when they are tiny babies, so don’t worry that you’re overlooking anything major!

    Best wishes! xx

    1. Also, I see lots of people suggesting sound machines, but keep in mind that many baby monitors already have them built in (such as the Nanit!).

  30. Nope, you don’t need the Dock-A-Tot or Owlet. We have a 4 month old and our very favorite items thus far have been the UppaBaby Vista and Mesa (along with the bassinet stand), the Lovevery Play Gym and Play Kits, Nanit baby monitor, Mam pacifiers and bottles, Spasilk onesies, Lansinoh lanolin, ErgoBaby, Willow breast pump, a rocking device of your choosing (it’s helpful to have one on each floor of your house), and both the Halo and the SwaddleMe swaddles. Unnecessary items include bottle warmers, wipe warmers, changing pad covers, and sound machines. Don’t overload yourself with all the “stuff” – you will just end up with clutter. Anything you realize that you need later can likely be ordered on Amazon and delivered the next day. Congrats, and good luck! 🙂

  31. I think I shared before that I’m in the IVF process and I’ve gone to buy buy baby just to test drive (😂) the vista SO many times. I love it, it’s super intuitive and as a 5 foot tall person it’s easy for me to collapse and open. Also the bassinet, who doesn’t love the pram aesthetic and it’s best for newborns to learn how to lay flat. I’m with your mom though, the dock a tot is an eyesore and I can’t imagine using it myself.

    I look forward to reading everyone’s suggestions

  32. I have an 8 month old baby boy, and here are my two cents – you’re going to want to buy all the adorable tiny outfits, and you should! But they are in a onesie 99% of the time and grow SUPER fast. I bought Carter’s and Mini Boden five packs of onesies as we needed them. I am a huge believer in safe sleep, and the dockatot isn’t recommended for unsupervised sleep. I had a Halo bedside “bassinest” for the first few months and it was great. You’ll want to get a few different brands of pacifiers/bottles to see what he likes best. Mine loves Comotomo and they’re so easy to clean. You need about a million plain burp cloths – we used cloth diaper inserts for around the house; they’re very absorbent. The bjorn bouncer and our exersaucer doorway jumper have been lifesavers. We also had a small seat that we could carry around from room to room before he was able to sit up on his own. There are several brands of shopping cart seat covers, but I have the Summer Infant one and it’s been great – it comes with a bolster pillow for before they can sit up entirely on their own, and covers the cart from germs. It frees up so much room in a cart vs putting the car seat in the cart or taking a stroller. Remember that less is more, and you’re all he really needs!

  33. I’m expecting my second and also due in September! I highly recommend joining the facebook group Safe Sleep and Baby Care — Evidence Based Support. They have a ton of good advice (and product albums) on what items are actually safe for babies in based on the American Academy of Pediatricians recommendations (e.g. dock a tot, bouncers, swings etc are not considered safe for sleep). Before you register or make any purchases its at least good to be well informed on what is and is not recommended and then make your own decisions from there.

    Also agree with others that the less is more approach is better. Babies grow out of so much of the stuff within the first couple months. Also because these items are used for such a short time its so easy to find most of them second hand but barely used which is also great for the environment. Highly recommend joining your local parent listservs/facebook groups to find baby gear that way.

  34. Registries are so hard. When I was pregnant, I talked to a friend who recently had a baby and copied everything she did. We found sleep sacks very useful. Halo makes good ones with flaps for swaddling when the baby is little. It’s much easier to swaddle a wiggly baby (or one you’re trying not to wake up) with a pre-made sack that you don’t have to fold perfectly yourself. It also felt safer than a regular swaddling blanket, which would sometimes come loose.

      1. I second the Halo Sleep Sacks. Buy 3- your future 3am self cleaning up a blow out in the one your baby is wearing (while your backup is soaking wet in the washer) will be happy…. 🙂

        I have an 8 month old, and once your baby grows out of the baby tub I actually recommend a cheap laundry basket with holes so the water can flow in and out when you set it in the tub! It’s the perfect size for them to have a little freedom to splash around but to protect them from hitting their head on the tub. (I also haven’t even baby proofed yet haha so don’t worry about that).

        Honestly, I would focus on doing things that will be harder to do when you have a baby. Go out to a late movie, go on some getaways, etc. I’m a huge fan of integrating your baby into your current life (taking them out to restaurants, etc.), but there are definitely things that are more difficult to do when your little guy arrives!

        Congrats!

  35. I honestly wish we’d gone a lot less gear-crazy when we were in the baby days. My girls are now 2 & 4 and it just becomes apparent over time how little you ACTUALLY need… and how quickly the time goes anyways (the window for “needing” some things is the tiniest blip!). I think necessities were a breast pump, a pack and play), a stroller (just a simple umbrella stroller… we didn’t need a big fancy one and had two kids within 21 months so we switched to a double stroller quickly anyways), a baby bouncer, a high chair, diapers and wipes and a few simple soft clothes. Totally unnecessary things: a diaper bag (any bag will do), a baby bathtub (just use the sink or a normal bathtub!), baby towels (normal towels dry all sizes of people!), any kind of bottle warmer / bottle sanitizer / wipes warmer (boil bottles and pacifiers in a pot of water and save your counter space), toys or a huge variety of baby entertainment items (they’re equally fascinated by EVERYTHING since everything is new to them… go for walks, look at fruit and flowers, talk to them, show them life!). I think a lot of things can be fun so we’re drawn to them, but you end up with so much waste if you indulge every whim. It’s a battle to eliminate the clutter now! I’d do it all differently if I got a second try.

    1. I agree!! I was told to buy as your child grows because you don’t really know what will work for you until you’re in it, and I didn’t want my home to be overrun with baby stuff that only gets used for a few months. And any hand me downs you can get TAKE!! No one will know if your pack-n-play is new or not haha

  36. Not a mom, but I don’t see why you would baby proof while pregnant…an infant can’t move around and get into stuff, so it’s not like they’re going to stick their finger in a socket! I think it’s so funny the books and apps talk about that stuff now.

  37. I have a massive baby gear recommendations email that I send to all my pregnant friends! Let me know if you’d like me to send it to you 🙂

  38. Uppababy vista and Mesa for sure!

    I would take a “less is more” approach. Every kid is so different so you could easily buy a mamaroo swing and then baby hates it. I think it’s easiest to buy things as you need them (I ordered plenty of things at 3am from amazon prime ha!). That makes registering hard but I think the best gifts are baby clothes in larger sizes because you get so much newborn – 3 month clothes and then the baby turns 6 months and you need a full new wardrobe.

    One note for the dock a tot is it’s not actually approved for safe sleep but nearly everyone I know uses it for sleep. Just keep that in mind because you might get some comments on that. But then again my son would only sleep in a rock and play which is now recalled and apparently was super dangerous 🙁

  39. I think there are two approaches to baby stuff – lets get everything vs. let’s try to be more minimalist and see what our baby likes. While I agree that each baby is an individual, I also think that this idea that different babies like different things is a product of commercialism. Back in the day there weren’t a million different kind of bottles and babies eventually learned to drink from the 1 or 2 kinds that existed. Now parents often don’t live close to family, have less community support, etc. and are so exhausted and with the click of a button can buy anything and everything that they think might help. The website Lucie’s List is the BEST place to learn about baby products.

    On that note, I have twins. I would say, particularly for a boy, pick a changing pad for the changing table/dresser that can be wiped down, like the keekaroo peanut or the skip hop one. anything to minimize laundry!

  40. You already know this, but The Fashion Magpie’s baby gear recommendations are awesome. I love how well researched all of her selections are.

  41. I have a 5.5 month old girl. I like to think I did pretty well on our baby gear planning :). There are only a few little things that were unnecessary. For your specific questions – we borrowed a dock-a-tot and used it occasionally. I wouldn’t buy it. Maybe if we have a second it would be useful because I’d need more places to put baby if I have a toddler?? Baby was basically either asleep, nursing, or using a few minutes of awake time to move around on a playmat. I am a firm believer in letting baby squirm and roll, I have tried to minimize baby contraptions (no swing, jumper, exersaucer). We do have a baby Bjorn bouncer and love it. Baby goes in there while I shower and maybe once or twice more throughout the day.

    We have the vista and Mesa. I think the entire UPPAbaby system is awesome, but it’s a city or neighborhood stroller. As soon as you need to put it in the trunk of a car or travel with it, it’s a beast. Like it’s awesome because it holds everything but it’s a lot to put away. I’ve done two cross country flights with it though, so I’m complaining, but I still like it haha. But maybe consider the Minu if you plan to travel a lot – it still attaches car seat or bassinet. I also kind of wished I’d looked at all of the Nuna things. But I think uppababy has the best double stroller and we were long term planning.

    Play mat – lovevery. Baby bath tub – Stokke. High chair – Stokke Tripp Trapp (LOVE). Bassinet – we went snoo. If I did it all over again, I might not have. It was good, but not epically amazing for our baby. However, I always felt like baby was safe in it (so we didn’t do owlet or snuza). Swaddle me Velcro swaddles – babies may fight swaddles but they actually love them. We used these at the doctor, for any naps we held baby, any time she just wouldn’t settle. Honest or Abby and Finn diapers. Water wipes. Beautycounter baby products. White noise machine!!! Silicone suction bulb. Mobile over changing table, not crib. Lots of burp cloths, lots of bibs, some blankets (don’t need many if you use Velcro swaddles). Suppress the need to have TONS of baby clothes – I had a million size 3-6 month things and baby grew through them in a month. I hated onesies until she was about 4 months – the best clothes are zip or snap sleepers with feet or kimono style onesies. Save the shoes, sweaters, overalls, and ridiculous baby clothes until they can sit/walk…like 9 month size and beyond.

    Finally, one of my top priorities was finding non-toxic, “safe” baby items (like the chemical flame retardant -free Mesa in Henry fabric). So decide what’s important to you :). And at the end of the day, do what you want, you’re the mama!! Donate any gifts that don’t work for you (or register on amazon because they have an awesome return policy!!!). Oh and Amazon prime or Prime Now were lifesavers in the first few months. There’s always something you forgot.

  42. I am due this summer and just put the finishing touches on my registry! Registering through Amazon has been super easy— highly recommend. I kept my list pretty minimalist, but I did a TON of research and the most recommended items from the trusted moms in my life (and registry guides/reviews online), were the DockaTot, Baby Bjorn bouncer (or somewhere else to “put” the baby..we went with the Baby Bjorn because of how compact it is), UppaBaby stroller (were going with the slightly smaller Cruz and the GLite for a travel stroller), Nuna Pipa Lite car seat (half the weight of the UppaBaby Mesa!), OXO perfect pull wipes dispenser, a good sound machine, and the Stokke Tripp Trapp high chair. We will see how it all works out! Also, I know you know, but The Fashion Magpie has amazing baby product reviews/registry must haves on her blog 🙂

  43. Congrats! I have a 14 month old son *Willem* and can totally relate to the overwhelming feeling of baby registry. For what it’s worth, here are the items we have relied on heavily over the past year.

    Matress: Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer Dual Sleep Surface Crib Mattress – Waterproof, Hypoallergenic, and Antimicrobial Lightweight Crib Mattress with Extra Firm Infant Side and Plush Toddler Side

    GripWater will be a life saver for hiccups, upset tummy and gas

    Toys: VTech Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker

    Hiking: (we even took this to Costa Rica in Feb) Kelty Transit 3.0 Child Carrier

    Bath Tub: Fisher-Price 4-in-1 Sling ‘n Seat Tub

    When he was a newborn this was a life saver – Boppy Newborn Lounger, Elephant Love Gray

    SleepSack- HALO SleepSack 100% Cotton Wearable Blanket, Baby Blue – We’ve worn sizes small now through XL

    For the future – Guidecraft Classic Kitchen Helper Stool – Gray W/Keeper and Non-Slip Mat: Foldable, Adjustable Height, Wooden Baking Stool for Children; Safe Cooking Tower Step Up; Little Kids Learning Furniture

    Sound Machine: Marpac Dohm UNO White Noise Machine

    ALL of the muslin swaddles. They can be used for everything!

    Also, we ended up just using an adult backback instead of a diaperbag. It fit more and has grown with him over time. We bought a small lunch box for bottles to put in the back pack for being out and about.

    Best Wishes!
    Teresa

  44. Baby Bjorn bouncer
    Tweezerman baby nail scissors- best ever, so much easier than clippers
    Sophie the Giraffe teething ring
    Also- I hated my diaper bags and wish that I had skipped them and just used a Longchamp with an organizer.

    1. May I ask what kind of organizer you had for your Longchamp? I hate digging for stuff lost in he dark depths of my bag! Thanks.

      1. Hey, I did not actually use an organizer when I finally switched to the Longchamp but I just bought a Skip Hop Pronto Signature Changing Station and Grab N’ Go Wet/Dry Bag for an upcoming shower and I think they would work really well. Skip Hop also has a bottle bag that coordinates that looks promising. Good luck!

  45. I don’t have children but I have so many friends who have the Dock-a-tot and they absolutely would scream YES you need it – hope that helps 😂

    1. Congrats on your first baby and I hope the hard part of the pregnancy is ove! Here’s to sailing and no sickness! My baby (toddler) is going to be 2 in August here are my top 3 must haves:

      Get a good diaper pail. I suggest the Munchkin one as the Diaper Genie is cheaply made and we’ve been through 2. Loving the Munchkin now.

      While we love our Uppa Baby Vista and the infant car seat was a must, our baby grew out of it fast and we had to get a real car seat. We went with the Gracco 4 Ever because it actually lasts from infancy until they are out of a booster seat and is rear facing up to 50 lbs.. The only thing is make sure you measure the car’s back seat. We had to get a car with lots of interior space to accommodate the rear facing car seat. Surprisingly, a lot of cars have very small interiors, even some SUVs.

      Finally, if you get a travel crib get the Baby Bjorn. It’s not cheap BUT it’s the only one that has a comfy mattress, is light/compact enough to travel with and is actually very easy to set up. We originally had a Chicco pack n play and while it came with all the bells and whistles our baby didn’t sleep well in it and it took up half our trunk space. We wound up leaving it at my parents’ house.

      Okay one last thing is I would be careful about getting a monitor that uses your WiFi unless it’s very secure and also works well all over your home. We have the Phillips Avent SCD630 and we love it. It has a long range so we can use the monitor in our basement, our yard, etc with no connection issues. And the connection is secure so random people can’t tap in and look in on our kid.