Wednesday, February 4, 2015

My Minimal Baby Must Haves {And A Few Sweet Splurges}

The more children I have, the less baby gear I want or use.

With the first we were so well loved by family and friends and given a wonderful baby shower. We dutifully went to our nearby big box baby store and registered for all the "essentials." The travel system (car seat and stroller combo). Swing, bouncer, pack n play, play mat, toys, hooded towels, on and on. Each item incredible specific. Each item with a potential usefulness lifespan of just a few months at best.

Of course every baby and circumstance is different, but my list of must haves has changed quite a bit over the years, evolving with my parenting style and our circumstances. My bare bones list is a car seat, a carrier, diapers, clothes, maybe a bouncer.

With our large family-in-a-small-home lifestyle, things have to truly earn their keep to be kept, and items that can be used for more than one task are more likely to fit the bill. So plain prefolds that can be used as burp cloths or diapers are a mainstay. A nice thick baby quilt can double as a floor mat. A regular towel works just fine. Beyond the newborn stage, holding onto things that are not getting used is just not an option with limited space, so the multiple use item is a better bet for us all the way around.

That all being said, I'm not exempt from oohing and ahhing over some truly sweet baby gear. Beyond knitting sweaters and leggings and booties, I rounded up a few things that I just love. What would you add to my list?

A nice baby carrier. We have a Beco and Ergo for when the baby gets bigger, but I'm dreaming of a Didymos Indio this time around. I love wrapping, but especially wrapping a newborn. In the carrier department, going with a more expensive option is usually your best bet. The nice thing is, resale values on carriers is very high and you can usually find nice ones used.

These leggings by Whole Parenting Goods. She has the best fabrics and they have enough stretch to make it over a cloth diaper.

Pilot caps. These ones from Lil Nells are so adorable!

I'm not a big bib girl, but these bibs from Wee Whimsicals are so cute, I make an exception.

Stretchy gauze swaddle blankets are a nice size, light enough weight for summer.

I've never used a baby hammock before but I love the idea.

Burt's Bees baby line makes your baby smell delicious, which is always a good thing.

There's truly not much you actually need for baby. Keeping them warm and fed and changed is pretty simple in most american homes. Everything else is truly gravy. And in a home like ours, with many siblings anxiously awaiting to hold and play with our newest addition, most of the gear would go unused anyway.

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  1. I'm hopin to making some gauze swaddle blankets for my first ever summer baby. My favorite flannel/cotton blankets will be too warm for swaddling, cuddling, nursing, burping etc...

  2. You will love them! Make them a good generous size - I use them to help keep my middle covered while nursing and they are lightweight enough not to swelter either of us.

  3. cannot agree more. My fourth baby is due in June and I've gotten rid of most everything we had with our first three children. I think I would add to your list: a good sound machine (we live in a little one-story house) and a good humidifier.


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