10 tips for taking the stress out of the baby checklist (plus, some products picks from the pros)
One of the first thoughts to strike a new parent—after feelings of joy, of course—is just how much stuff their new bundle of cuteness requires. Hence, the baby registry: a smart way to keep track of baby’s needs while providing loved ones with the chance to give you something they know you’ll love. But creating a baby registry can be an overwhelming process. I remember standing in the middle of buybuy BABY with my all-powerful laser gun, frozen with indecision over which changing pad to scan. There’s just so much stuff out there—and every parent wants the best. To help the overstressed parent-to-be, we asked for 10 tips from the registry experts.
1. Start early “This gives you plenty of time to consider your choices and change your mind,” says Ali Wing, founder and CEO of giggle, who recommends registering four or five months before your due date. “It also allows for proper lead time on larger items and special orders,” she adds. And if the baby comes early, you’ll be glad everything is taken care of!
2. Use starter checklists “Let someone else do the homework for you,” says Wing. Rather than beginning your registry from scratch, use checklists available at stores like giggle and community websites like thebump.com to help jumpstart the process—they outline the basic gear and clothing that newborns need.
3. Talk to other new parents With so many products on the market, it can be confusing to discern what you truly need. Asking new moms and dads who’ve been there can help. “They can tell you what was great, what worked for them and what they thought was pointless,” says Ingrid Prueher, founder of NYC Baby Planner.
4. Touch and feel “It’s important to try out what you’re getting,” says Prueher. Sure, you don’t have to leave your home to create a registry, but it’s a good idea. A baby blanket may appear luxuriously soft on your computer screen, but have a very different texture when you get your hands on it.
5. Combine several registries into one Most parents end up registering at several stores. To make life easier for you and gift-givers, consolidate all your registries into one place by using a website like amazingregistry.com, recommends Prueher.
6. Strike a balance between now and later “The amount of clothes we get for newborns is crazy because they outgrow them so quickly,” says Prueher. Instead of registering for countless onesies, include toddler gear like a high chair or umbrella stroller you’ll need later.
7. Don’t stress over price points “Unlike bridal registries, it’s typical for a baby registry to have a lot of smaller items and everyday essentials,” says Wing. Choosing items with a range of prices lets you accommodate all budgets. Include splurges, too. “You never know when friends or family might want to go in together on a gift!” she says.
8. Register for gift cards If you’re unsure of what to register for, include a few gift cards. Family and friends are often happy to give them and “it leaves room for items you may need later on [after the baby is born],” says Wing.
9. Don’t keep your registry a secret People want to give you something you’ll use, so don’t be shy about spreading the word about your registry. Take advantage of stores that have insert cards for shower invitations, recommends Wing. “Or ask to see if they have an e-mail template so you can send notifications from their websites,” she says.
10. Remember what’s important In the end, what’s on your registry isn’t going to make or break your life as a new parent. “Babies need a home, they need to be loved, to be changed and fed, and they need a certain amount of clothes,” says Prueher. “Everything else is just accessories.”
Spruce Up Any Registry With Hand-Picked Items From The Pros
ERGObaby Performance Carrier. This new model is one-third lighter than the standard ERGO carrier and allows babies to be cradled with both legs to one side. (thebump.com)
UPPAbaby Vista Stroller in Pink. Features both a bassinet and seat, folds super-easily and comes in a color exclusive to this store. (buybuy BABY)
Baby Brezza One Step Baby Food Maker. Load food and water into the machine, pick a steam time and get a healthy baby puree in minutes. (Babies “R” Us)
NEW & COOL
Joovy Groove Stroller. A great value, the Groove umbrella stroller is available in four colors and can be used with babies as young as three months old. (buybuy BABY)
Boon Naked Collapsible Baby Bathtub. Can be reclined to cradle a newborn and collapses flat for easy storage. (thebump.com)
Magnificent Baby Layette. A luxuriously soft layette with magnetic enclosures that make changing baby a breeze. (buybuy BABY)
Chewbeads Jewelry. Stylish necklaces for mom made of colorful, non-toxic beads baby can teethe on. (Albee Baby)
THE TODDLER YEARS
Chicco 360 Hook-On High Chair. It swivels 360 degrees, is machine-washable and folds up into a carry bag. (thebump.com)
Britax Marathon 70 XE Convertible Car Seat. Grows with your child from birth to 70 pounds. (buybuy BABY)
Chicco Polly Magic High Chair. This sturdy high chair has a snap-on tray and fits baby from the newborn stage to the toddler years. (Babies “R” Us)
UPPAbaby G-Luxe Stroller. A lightweight umbrella stroller with a convenient carry strap and great sun canopy. (Albee Baby)
NEW MOM INDULGENCE
Beaba Bib’Expresso. It may look like a chic espresso machine but this one actually lets moms prepare a bottle of formula milk (or warm up breast milk) at the perfect temperature in just 90 seconds. (thebump.com)
Belli Best Baby Bump Duo. Pregnant moms will love these two luxurious and non-toxic products: Elasticity Belly Oil and All Day Moisture Body Lotion. (buybuy BABY)
Monte Design Joya Rocker. A modern rocker that mom will use beyond the baby years. (giggle)
Timi & Leslie Diaper Bag. A stylish way to carry baby essentials. (Albee Baby)
Tags: baby, baby shower, bottles, breast milk, budgets, car carrier, checklist, Choices, essentials, gift cards, gift givers, highchair, insert cards, NYC Baby Planner, onesies, parents-to-be, registry, special orders, stroller, thebump, toddler, umbrella stroller
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