The day I found out about my pregnancy, one of the first things that popped in my head was all the cute things that I could buy for my littles. I had decided to wait a couple weeks before beginning our baby registry. However, once I actually started working on it I felt completely overwhelmed. There were so many items of different brands to choose from, and then on top of that I had no idea if I needed one or two (or more) of everything. Choosing baby items should be fun and exciting; here are some of my and my family’s favorites to hopefully make it easier for you to decide which items work best for your family.
To start off I had to decide where I would be creating my registry. I picked Target for people who like going into a physical store to look for presents and I also used Amazon for those who preferred to shop and ship straight to us. (A little fun fact: both of these companies give you welcome packets with lots of awesome samples!)
Next, I decided to pick the big ticket items. For us that was car seats and cribs. Amazon was the one that I really liked using when it came to high priced items because they allow your friends and family to “pitch in” towards that item, without forcing someone to pay for the whole thing. With this feature we were able to get enough funds to fully cover all of the more expensive items.
We were blessed enough to be given an Uppababy Vista stroller from another multiples mom. Since we already had this stroller we tried to look for car seats that would fit it. Our top choice for infant car seats was the Maxi Cosi brand. They are very lightweight (remember you may be carrying two or more at the same time from time to time!) and very easy to take apart for those unexpected (but bound to happen) poopy blow outs. However, as our littles got longer and heavier we switched over to Graco 4EVER ExtendToFit car seats. My husband is 6’4” and my boys are following in his footsteps! It was really important to me that my boys stayed rear-facing for as long as they could, which is made possible with these seats.
While I loved the Uppababy stroller it was a bit heavy, and the accessories are kind of pricey. I personally wish we had gone with a wagon instead of a stroller.
After putting the bigger items on the list, we decided to add the necessities. For us, those were:
- Diapers - our favorites are Pampers. Swaddlers and Baby Dry are usually our go-to for this brand. I was hesitant at first to buy or ask for diapers because I wasn’t sure if one would be allergic (my husband has sensitive skin) to a specific brand. However, I found a “mom hack” that Target and Walmart will let you exchange diapers for different brands or provide store credit for a future purchase as long as the barcode on the diaper bag/box is scannable in their system. I would recommend downloading their apps and trying their scanners before making the drive up to one of these stores. Another Amazon tip: they allow you to add a diaper fund to your registry. This means people will input money into the “fund” and you spend it as needed. This is helpful for keeping your house uncluttered since you don’t have to keep a big stock.
- Wipes - Pampers or Walmart brand have been our favorites.
- Burp cloths - my twins had acid reflux which means LOTS and LOTS of spit up. Burp cloths became our best friend. We actually had over 40 burp cloths at one point. We used so many a day and bibs just did not clean up like we needed them to. Even though my kids are now almost two years old, the burp cloths are still very functional as we use them to wipe their hands or faces after dinner or play time.
- Nose Frida - okay, I know what you’re thinking… “sucking my kids boogers!? No way.” I felt the same way, but after so many people recommending it to me we finally decided to try it out. IT IS AMAZING! It sucks up all the boogies, it is cleaner and works better than the sucking bulb (in my opinion), and it has a filter so there’s zero risk that you will ever be ingesting any of those boogies.
- Twin Z pillow - this was such a life saver for us. We used it all the time from the day we came home from the hospital until about 1.5 years old. It is great for laying while you bottle feed them, nursing (especially if you want to tandem nurse), it helps keep them in place to assist with sitting up and then it becomes a pillow that they can lay on to read or watch tv.
- Swings - the swings for us were also another lifesaver. Most days it helped in rocking them to sleep, or at least kept them moving so mommy and daddy could sit, breathe, and maybe get one or two warm sips of coffee. We used the DuetSoothe Graco Swings and liked it because it vibrated, rocked 3 different ways, it was easy to detach from the motor if you just wanted to use the rocking feature, and it played music.
- Lastly, clothes. I will say that while baby clothes are sooo cute and it is so easy to want to buy all the outfits you see, I really recommend looking into secondhand items. (Psssst… check out our FWMOM *members only* buy, sell, trade page on Facebook!) As much as we don’t want to admit it, our kids will grow quickly and there’s no point in spending a ton of money on clothes that they will wear a handful of times before they’re too small.
A couple of other items we added to the list, in case you need more ideas, were:
Baby bottles, a baby first aid kit, wubbanub pacifiers, baby monitor, baby gates, books, sit me up seats, bath essentials, and swaddle blankets.
While I know what worked for my family may not necessarily work for others, I hope this blog is able to give you some assistance in choosing your own top favorites!
Valerie Hines currently serves FWMoM as co-chair VP of programs. She has identical boys, Oliver and Dexter, 1.