Makin. Babies, Spendin. Money


I remember when we were pregnant with Bean, one of the things that went over and over in my mind was how exactly it would work having a baby. What were the logistics of a newborn? What would I use? What equipment would I need? What would I do if I didn’t have something I needed? Sometimes, I would go on crazy binges of online consumer and product research. And then other times, I’d just lay on the couch, close my eyes, and try to make myself believe that first the baby would be born and then his suitcase full of necessities would show up by stork. Unfortunately, our stork got lost and no suitcase arrived. Which meant that Chris and I were left to figure out what we needed. We decided to register for EVERYTHING possible. What if I needed a pee pee tee pee in the middle of one dark and stormy night? I had these full on conversations with myself about how I might be scarring my child if I didn’t give him the option of using a pee pee tee pee. Later, I learned that babies can pee through felt just as much as they can pee through anything else, and it was really just a matter of cleaning pee off the wall or off the changing table. So, we found better uses for the pee pee tee pees. IMG_4558



Over time, we narrowed it down to a few basics that we really could not have lived without. I mean, we loved the tiny blue (and later, pink) baby towels. And the bottle warmer was nice…the two times we actually used it. And having a beautiful bedding set made a lovely nursery, but we didn’t see it for about three months while the baby slept in our bedroom. But there were a few staples for both of our kids that we couldn’t get by without. I hesitate to say what you really need to go buy because every baby is different and every family has different needs. But here’s one piece of advice I can give you about whatever it is you are thinking of purchasing for your wee one. TRY IT OUT!

My lovely sister taught me this when I was registering for Bean. She called me one afternoon and told me she new exactly which swing I needed to buy for him. She started describing it to me and she was using phrases like, “It’s just so comfy!” and “It’s so soft and cushy!” “Gin,” I said. “How exactly do you know how comfy the swing is?” “Because – duh! – I got in it!” My sweet sister crawled her 25-year-old self up in a swing at the store all by herself one afternoon. She said she got down on her knees and contorted herself all up in odd positions until she was just about laying down in the swing. She played with the toys and snuggled in the padding and after half an hour and who knows how many swings, she declared it the most comfortable and insisted that’s the one that I go with. So, I did.

Two weeks later, Ginny came to town to visit with my parents. We headed to the baby store with a simple task of selecting a crib mattress. Being a rational, adult human being, I stood two mattresses up next to each other and compared prices and padding thickness. After a few minutes of this, Ginny threw her hands up in frustration and said, “You’re doing it all wrong!” And with that, she threw the mattresses down on the floor and laid down. And then she began rolling around. “What are you doing?!?!” I laughed. “I’m rolling around like a baby. Don’t you want to know what the mattress feels like? That’s what will matter to your baby.” And, once again, she was right. Of course that’s how I should determine the mattress. Just like I would buy my own mattress.



We spent the rest of the night at the baby store trying out everything. We climbed in cribs (and were promptly asked to get out of them…), we wrapped blankets around us, we sat in rockers. We did it all!



At first, it felt slightly odd. I mean, no one else was USING all of the baby products before scanning them with the registry gun. But by the time we were all done, I felt so good about what we’d picked out because there wasn’t a product on our registry that I hadn’t used myself. So, whether you’re registering online or in person, be sure you stop for a minute and look up from your consumer reports. Put your hands on the products. Test ’em out. Roll around in ’em. Get to know ’em. Then, when you hit that trigger on the registry gun, you’ll know exactly what you’re bringing into your home.

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11 thoughts on “Makin. Babies, Spendin. Money

  1. This made me laugh but you are so right! When we bought the mattress for my first we spent a little more money to get the nicer mattress. On my second child we bought the cheaper one because on paper they did not seem that different. Later on I actually sat on both they the cheap one felt horrible! Poor little guy got the bad mattress. Wish I had rolled on it at the store!

  2. Too funny! But very true…sometimes really trying it out is the way to figure out whether something works for you…

  3. This is hilarious! Why have I never thought to do this?

  4. Nicole

    When my cousin was trying to get his little boy to sleep in his toddler bed, he was getting a bit frustrated after several nights of his son ending up back in their room, so he finally asked him why he wouldn’t sleep in his bed and he said it wasn’t comfortable like Mom & Dad’s was. So my cousin set out to prove him wrong and laid on the bed, which he had never done before, and discovered to his chagrin that the combo box springs/mattress was upside down and his poor son had been trying to sleep on the box springs side! He felt so bad, so trying it out himself in the beginning would definitely have helped!

  5. My hubby and I totally tried out our crib mattress at the store! Thanks for making me feel a little less odd for doing so:)

  6. love the pictures that accompanied!

  7. Love this! We tried to go minimal on baby shopping, and I think we did a pretty decent job. One thing I saw that I thought was completely ridiculous: baby robes. Really? When my gal gets out of the bath, she goes in a towel and then into pjs. Why would I put a robe on her? So she can put on her matching slippers and browse a magazine while painting her toe nails. She’s 8-months-old! 🙂

  8. Jenna

    I loved the picture on your main page for this post. I am glad that we aren’t the only one who made our dog try all the baby’s new toys while we waited for him to arrive. Happy birthday to your sweet little one! Ours turns 1 this Sunday.

  9. My family did the same thing with the recliners when my hubby and I were expecting our little one. Except all my siblings went so there were 8 of us sitting on chairs. 🙂

  10. Your pictures are really what make the post so great! Love the pics 🙂

  11. haha I don’t understand how anyone gets those pee pee tee pees to work! We had several because they told us at our birth class that they would save our lives. They weren’t even close to keeping our boy’s pee pee contained. Keep writing!
    Cheap blog editing and proofreading – for when your blog has too many readers to pretend it doesn’t matter because no one’s going to see it.

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