Ready or not, baby’s on the way! One of the most important (and fun!) ways to prep for your little one is to create a registry filled with ALL the essentials. Building a registry is not only practical, it can also help you mentally and logistically plan for the major life change that’s about to take place. Many parents-to-be actually enjoy the process–research, read, ask around, and (once gifts start coming your way) get excited and organize it all for baby’s arrival. But just when you think you’ve got everything you’ll ever want or need, we’re here to tell you that you’re *probably* forgetting something. Trust us–ask any parent how they’d change their registry if they could do it over again and they’ll likely have some thoughts!
With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list of items likely missing from your baby registry.
Your baby arrives all teeny tiny, sleepy, and hungry. Know who else is ravenous (with literally zero time to cook)? The parents (especially mama!). You can AND SHOULD register for some good eats!
Here’s how to get the nourishment and noms you need:
PS: We wrote an entire blog post on how to feed yourself postpartum. Check it out for some other great ideas!
While you may remember to register for things like Shampoo & Body Wash, lotion, baby powder, and diaper rash cream, there are other skin situations that you’ll want to be prepared for. Request a healing ointment (but avoid traditional petroleum jelly!), baby massage oil, a silicone brush (for cradle cap and eczema), wound repair spray, plus gentle wipes for hands, noses, and neck creases.
What’s worse than your baby coming down with a fever or cold? Being completely unprepared for it! Stock their medicine cabinet now with all the sick day and wellness essentials. Even if you plan to use home remedies for most of your baby’s ailments, it never hurts to stash away some OTC relief just in case.
Some items to consider:
PS: Always, ALWAYS, ask your pediatrician before administering any of these. And triple check the age and dosage requirements. For example, many meds aren’t approved for babies under 6 months, or your doc may advise you to skip the fever reducer unless your baby is too uncomfortable to eat or sleep.
PPS: For any of these treatments, choose brands that are formulated without artificial sweeteners, flavors, or dyes.
Maybe you’ve registered and received ALL the physical baby things you’ll ever need. Consider asking for educational resources that’ll give you the gift of preparedness, confidence, and knowledge! Whether you want to consume your information through an online course, in-person guide, or an old fashioned book, there is plenty of useful information available!
Here are a few ideas:
You’re about to spend a disgustingly large amount of money on diapers…unless you register for them! Enter our very own Diaper Registry Fund where friends and family chip in on your personal diaper fund and YOU have control over the sizes, order dates, and (squee!) adorable prints that’ll adorn your baby’s booty.
PS: Registering for diapers in this way just makes sense, as you have no idea what diaper size your baby will need as a newborn or for how long they’ll stay in certain sizes.
You’ll be glad to have a multi-purpose cover when you bring your baby out in public for the first time and wish you could cover them up in the car seat for a nap or as a shield from the sun (or people!). It also acts as a nursing cover, baby blanket, scarf, or cover for restaurant high chairs and shopping cart seats.
While your hospital or birthing center will send you home with plenty of postpartum provisions, it’ll never be enough. Start your self-care planning now and register for alllll the post-birth products (it’s nothing to be self-conscious about) and organize everything in a basket behind the toilet.
A white noise machine is worth its weight in gold! It’s one of the must-have additions to any nursery and nighttime routine. Some parents leave it off their registry as they plan to use a sound machine app on their phone, but we’d suggest getting one specifically for your little one. Be sure to try it out beforehand to make sure you like the sounds, settings, and volume options (and return it straight away if it’s not a good fit!).
Pro hack: Don’t forget to bring it with you to the hospital for post-birth nights and naps. Hospitals are noisy and you’re gonna need every wink of sleep you can get before heading home.
You’ve registered for lots of nifty gifts that require refills or replacement parts. Register for those, too, so you aren’t caught empty-handed! Remember that a snot sucker requires replacement hygiene filters, your diaper pail might need special garbage bags, and air purifiers need new filters every so often.
Don’t assume that you can wash your baby’s clothes in your usual detergent. That newborn skin is soft and sensitive, and it can’t handle harsh irritants found in most regular formulas. Register for lots of plant-based detergent created specifically for babies (you can’t go wrong with fragrance-free!). Between drool, spit-ups, blow-outs, and potty accidents (yep, they happen!), you’ll be doing countless loads of laundry in those early days.
It’ll be awhile before your wee one can sit up independently. Until then, you’ll need a safe space to lay them down so you can take care of yourself–go to the bathroom, brush your teeth, get dressed, EAT. You won't want to carry your baby around during their every waking second–that's just a back ache waiting to happen! A baby lounger, seat, swing, or bouncer will be a major sanity-saver.
If you don’t already have a cozy chair for feeding, rocking, and bonding with your baby, add one to that registry! Opt for the most comfortable (which is not always the most stylish!). You (and your rear end!) will be grateful for it during those late night waking hours.
One of the best pieces of sleep advice you’ll receive is this: baby’s sleep best in a dark environment. Make sure their sleeping space is ready-to-go with blackout curtains, blackout shades, and light-blocking stickers (for electronics).
You’ve probably already registered for all the sweetest newborn baby clothes. But think beyond those first 6 months and order onesies, jammies, booties, and pants to fill their first 18 months. Keep the time of year in mind, so you can request seasonally-appropriate outfits in the sizes you’ll need!
The most practical gift of all? Gift cards to places like Target, Walmart, and Buy Buy Baby (and also, Hello Bello!). When someone asks you what you need for the baby, let your default response be “gift cards, please!” Plan to use them on things you may be waiting to purchase like baby carriers, toys, formula, front-facing car seat, special swaddles, a travel crib, plus extra burp cloths, bibs, wipes, and clothes!
Baby registry anxiety is a thing! With so many baby products out there, how do you know what’s actually essential for you? Truthfully, you won’t know until your baby arrives and you’re in the thick of it all. It’s why gift cards are such a practical request!
What would you add to this list? Let us know in the comments below!