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Having a baby is one of the most exciting times in a couple’s life together, but it’s also one of the most expensive. Between diapers, food and equipment, it’s very easy to go broke if you don’t watch what you’re not careful. Everyone and their uncle seems to have an opinion about what you’ll need for baby, but listening to them all can cause you to not only spend more, but to have a ton of items lying around your home that you truly don’t need. Take a look at these 6 things you do not need to buy for your baby and save yourself some cash…and frustration.
A closet full of fancy new outfits –
If you’re a seasoned Mom, you’ll know that I’m speaking the truth on this, but if you’re a new mom? Bear with me. Your little one will grow incredibly fast in their first few weeks of life…so much so that if you drop a mortgage payment on those pretty new newborn outfits? You’ll be crying into fabric with the tags still on. Not to mention the fact that the baby will likely spend their first few weeks of life in onesies, gowns or sleepers. Instead of buying a bunch of clothes that they’ll never get to wear, pick up just two or three new outfits and call it done. You’ll have the pretty pieces that you want for pictures and visits and your budget will thank you.
62,000 newborn sized diapers –
Okay, maybe you won’t have that actual number in stock, but like with the fancy clothing? Your baby will grow…fast…faster than you ever thought was humanly possible. So if you stock up on massive amounts of newborn sized diapers? You’ll likely be looking at box after box of unused and even unopened packages before you know it. 2 of my 4 kids were never even in newborn size they skipped right to size 1s. Instead, pick up just a few sized newborn and stock sizes 1 and 2 for the long haul. If you’re feeling especially productive, stock up on sizes 3, 4 and 5 as well. I can tell you from experience that size 3 was where I lingered the longest on diaper sizes.
A swing, bassinet, playpen, highchair and a bouncy seat –
I’ve never understood why people feel the need to have all of the above. Seriously. Buying all 5 of those items will cause you to have nothing but a very, very cluttered house on top of an empty wallet. Instead, buy items that can double as the others. Graco makes a very nice play yard set up that can double as a bassinet. A swing can double as both a high chair and bouncy seat if you need. Even a car seat can be a quick replacement for a bouncy seat in a pinch (if you’re out at someone’s house and need to put the baby down, etc but be warned it isn't recommended ).
Bottle Warmer and Sanitizer –
Let’s come down off of Mt. “I don’t wanna do it” for a bit and talk about the sheer waste of money that you’re doing by paying for a bottle warmer and sanitizer. Save the $40 or so you’d spend on them and use what Moms everywhere have used for centuries. Your stove. To sterilize, boil the nipples and bottles in hot water or run through the dishwasher once. To heat, place the bottle (with milk in it) in a pan of warm water and let it sit. When it gets warm enough that you can NOT feel a simple drop of it on your wrist, it’s done. Shake well to distribute the heat and feed. Honestly though, I've never warned milk for any of my kids.
Baby Wipe Warmer –
Like with the bottle warmer, buying a wipe warmer is nothing but a waste of money. You already have a wipe warmer built right into your body. It’s called your hands. Use them instead and save the money for something else you may need further down the road.
Changing Table –
Aside from the expense, a changing table is just unsafe. Instead, change baby on the floor or some other place where you know for sure they won’t fall and save yourself the money and potential heartache.
There you have it. My 6 things you don’t need for baby. Do you have any that I missed? Be sure to share them with us so we can all save on our next little ones!
Laura Johnson says
Amen! Thank you for finally saying it! I’d also add: 1) that expensive diaper pail to the list. I’ve had 2 kids and I babysit a LOT and have never had one…my house does not smell like poopy diapers, and I’ve saved a lot of money not buying the refills for this thing. 2) a baby bathtub (unless you don’t have a full sized bathtub). Never had one of these either. The sink works for a newborn, and when baby can sit, a laundry basket in the bathtub is perfect. Cause really, you’d use a bathtub for a couple months at most, but then you’ll have to store that big awkward thing.
So great that you have a list as well. Made me laugh! Here’s mine: http://wp.me/p5ibLt-5IO As you can see there is some overlap 🙂
You don’t need an excessive amount of toys. Infants and toddlers are happy with simple homemade toys from recycled materials.
like the list but would definately recommend a changing for caesarean Mummies. I couldn’t bend and it saved me a lot of pain!
Our changing table was a life saver. We used it until our son was 3, at least! I’m tall and can’t imagine having to constantly change him on the floor – or even stoop to the surface of the bed. He was never left alone on the table and my hand was always on him. Just be smart.
He was also a baby who never wanted Mommy out of sight, so there was a bouncy seat stationed constantly in our bathroom. #fondmemories
Julie @ Logger's Wife says
I actually loved out changing table. Getting on the floor was so much harder. I did make sure to buy one that had drawers as well as two cubbies. I used the drawers to hold extra diapers, crib sheets, etc. So it really came in handy. We also had both a swing and a bouncey seat and eventually a high chair. I purchases the swing used for quite cheap though.
I have never understood the bassinet thing. We used a pack ‘n play with the bassinet insert for the first 6 weeks. We travel a lot so the PNP was a must for us. The bassinet insert made it easier for sure and not an extra expense or thing to store. 🙂
(visiting from Frugal Friday)
In general I do agree with you however I would never use the swing as a highchair. First it’s not at all the right heigjt, my daughter has always preferred sitting at the table with us and that wouldn’t be possible with the swing. Also now at 10 months she is done with the swing stage so that can be packed away/sold/etc. But she still very much needs a highchair. Lastly I don’t know in general but our swing has a LOT more fabric than our high chair and would have been much more difficult to clean. That being said I don’t think you need to spend a lot on any of these things, yard sales and mom to mom sales are wonderful things!
Danielle, The Frugal Navy Wife says
Every kid is different. My oldest daughter was addicted to her infant bouncer. My 2 year old? Never used it! We use out bumbo seat for a high chair with the youngest it supports her better even at 8 months. 🙂
I agree with everything BUT the bottle warmer. We breastfed so our extra milk I pumped sat in the fridge. That thing was a life saver for middle of the night feedings.
To each her own, I guess… I’ve raised 4 bio kids, adopted 2 more from foster care, and have had 15 other foster kids. I find a bassinet, high chair and changing table to be indispensable. Our changing table has pretty much not ever been out of use in 24 years! I have a bassinet on each level of our home and love the one with wheels that can be moved from room to room!
Danielle, The Frugal Navy Wife says
Every family is different. I find I need stuff now for a baby, having a larger family, that I did not need for my first baby. I also do not need stuff for babies not that i DID need for my first baby. It’s all trial and error 🙂
I found the change table invaluable myself, holds are the diapers and wipes and saves your back and knee’s, that’s one i wouldn’t be telling people to forgo. Also, telling people to put your kids down for a nap in the car seat is a terrible idea. They were not made for sleeping in and many babies have passed away from parents putting their kids to sleep in car seats.
Danielle, The Frugal Navy Wife says
I don’t recommend it on a regular basis since I said in a pinch. I have used it at a friend house when the baby fell asleep using it while you are right there I feel is fine just don’t leave them in it and walk away.
I raised my children with a baby bed, a highchair, a swing and a car seat. Oh, and one bottle for water. What the heck is all this other stuff? They were walking at 7 months holding on to the furniture. I nursed with no problems, had no bottles, pumps, nothing. If I had diapers and wipes… I was good.
Wow! I agree with you on the clothes and diapers, but everything else has been a necessity in our home and we’re not first time parents either we have 3 daughters and use everything else on the list almost daily. We haven’t needed the bottle warmer so much this time since I work from home now and can nurse on demand, but when I worked outside of the home and my mom watched the girls the bottle warmer was so much easier and faster for her because my breastfed baby would not drink cold breast milk from a bottle.
Can’t even suggest a car seat “in a pinch.” Too many will get used to the “oh it’s only for a second…” Then a minute… Then baby is napping in the car seat on someone’s living room floor. Babies legitimately die from being left in car seats in the home. And it can take just a minute. Had a girlfriend drop her kids off at the sitter, SHE changed her oldest while leaving the NB in the car seat for “just a sec” and when she turned to pull baby out of the seat to change him too, he was unresponsive and not breathing. She never got to hear his cries again. For the sake of babies everywhere, PLEASE remove that. You want something else for the list you don’t NEED? Skip the infant seat completely. Babies fit perfectly fine in the correct convertible car seat. Start with that. Save the $100+ on what the infant bucket would cost you.
Danielle, The Frugal Navy Wife says
You know with my first 3 kids i thought the travel system with the bucket car seat was a must have. Then with baby number 4 I started to carry her instead of using a stroller with3 other littles it was easier. we switched her to a convertible car seat at just 2 months because it was easier. It really is parents choice and how it fits into their lives. Our next kid we will skip the bucket seat this time.
I would like to add a bedding set for the crib. Sure they’re adorable, but the only thing you really use is the fitted sheet. The crib bumpers aren’t recommended (we got the breathable ones), and most people never use the comforter, it just gets tossed aside. I spent a lot of time researching which designs I wanted for my twins, and an experienced mom friend gave me the advice to just get the sheets and a pretty (and usable) blanket to drape over the side of the crib.
Honestly, we did love our wipe warmer though
I personally 100% disagree with the change table. I think it is a necessity to have somewhere to change baby that is up off the ground. 1) who wants to sit on the floor whilst changing a baby 2) the fooor is harder to clean than a change mat or change mat cover no matter what you put under baby 3) so many people have animals, no one wants them involved with change time 4) if you have ever had any kind of issue with your back you will risk hurting it (even if you didn’t have an issue you face a risk) 5) unsafe for baby to be on the floor if you have animals and your hands are busy baby could be trodden on 6) easier to keep things in one place. Change tables are only a falls risk if your not 100% paying attention to your baby and holding them or watching them, which any responsible parent is doing when changing their baby. We actually have our change mat on a dresser as it’s the perfect height for me and saved money and room.