Things Not to Buy Baby
A List of Things Not to Buy before Baby comes home
A surprising number of babies don’t like pacifiers – ours didn’t. If your baby isn’t interested, don’t force them to like the pacifier. This was a warning we received during our birth class, and I can remember the surprise I felt when I saw a mom force her baby to keep a pacifier in his mouth so that mom could carry on a cell phone conversation. It’s fine to have one or two on hand, but it’s not something you need a dozen or so of until you know if you have a ‘binkie’ baby or not.
Honestly, you’ll probably get more than enough receiving blankets from your showers and the hospital. While you do need a couple for swaddling and padding, try to keep the number down that you buy to a dozen or so – at most. Receiving blankets are rather lightweight and small, and while they are very useful and handy during the first few weeks, many families move on to different blankets and options after the first month or two.
Size 0-3 Clothes:
Obviously, baby needs something to wear when they come home – but be careful of stocking up too much on the smaller sizes (a mistake every new parent we know has made). Babies grow up so fast.
One thing people don’t realize is that baby clothing tends to run by weight, not necessarily by age. For instance, we were given ‘preemie’ outfits for the boys when they were first born. The clothes were ‘up to 5 lbs’ – which was less than our boys’ birth weight, and were too small before they could even wear them. The 0-3 sizes can run up to 12, 16, or 23 lbs – depending on which brand you buy. While every baby grows at a different rate (for instance, some newborns reach 20 lbs by four months, there are many babies that don’t reach the 20 lbs weight until after their first birthday), there aren’t many that stay under 12 lbs after the first couple of months. A good rule of thumb is to stock up on the onesies and one-piece sleepers and outfits that baby can sleep in, and buy clothes that fit “0-6 months”. Every new parent will find that there are the cutest outfits that they had to have, yet baby outgrew them too quickly.
Something that we found helpful is to let people know what the guys’ weight was, and size of clothes, so that family and friends didn’t have to guess (for instance, at 12 months our guys were well into size 2T clothes, and 3T sleepwear).
I know someone that had purchased nine pairs of patent leather shoes that their baby outgrew by two months. It’s actually better for baby’s foot development – and more comfortable – to keep the shoes off and wear socks instead. Little shoes are adorable, but you really only need one or two pair per size. Having ten different pair will unnecessarily tax your baby budget.
Teething rings will come in handy when baby starts teething around four to seven months (although some babies do start earlier than that, and about one in 2000 babies have a tooth when they’re born). I’d recommend having teething ring options around by the time baby reaches three months old. Again, some babies prefer the smooth teethers, and others prefer the ones with ‘nubs’ on them, and some babies prefer both. And there are some that prefer a washcloth with one corner dipped in water and frozen over any other teething gadget you provide.
Focus on bright colors, dual functionality, and visual stimulation. Toys can quickly overrun the toy box and the rest of your house. Let’s face it – a baby just doesn’t need that much to keep him or her entertained. A good play mat with a toy bar, a rattle or two, and your love and attention is more than enough to keep the little one entertained for hours.
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