Baby stuff - what's good, what's not?

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Registered: 01-24-2004
Baby stuff - what's good, what's not?
Wed, 06-02-2004 - 10:35am

For all of you "Been There Done That" Mom's to us Newbies....

Looking through baby items is completely overwhelming for those of us doing this for the first time.


Avatar for alexeyev
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-04-2003
Wed, 06-02-2004 - 10:59am
Hi! As a brand newbie mommy, I can't recommend baby sleep-sacs enough! Just make sure it's the kind that snaps all the way up. Putting things over a brand new baby's head is not only taxing for the baby, it is soooo scary for a new parent! If you buy clothes, make sure its easy for you to fit your hands into. For example, when putting a little arm into a little sleeve, you want to make sure the wrist part is stretchy so you can fit your fingers in to pull the little arm. Also, don't buy too much newborn clothes. My baby is already outgrowing some of her clothes!

I also recommend a bassinet of some sort that is portable for day-sleeping - reserving your crib for night only.

Buy at least 2 changes for the crib and bassinet - spit up happens.

I have a Maya Wrap. ( ). I don't know how I would get anything done if I didn't have it. Lucia initially protests when I put her in, but then she sleeps so soundly and allows me to have use of both my hands. I wouldn't be able to post right now if it weren't for the sling!

Good luck!


momma of Lucia - 3 weeks!


Lucia (5/10/04) & Tique


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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-21-2003
Wed, 06-02-2004 - 11:48am
I remember when DH and I went to go register for our baby shower. We got so overwhelmed with it all that we looked for about 15 minutes then went home (plus, I wasn't feeling that great).

My DS really liked his bouncy seat. He liked to be upright so that he could see what was going on. He hated "tummy time."

He sort of liked the swing, but we had to work up to it (2 minutes at first, then 5 minutes, etc.).

Pack-n-play! We have a 2-level house. DS had a cradle in our room and slept there at night. But we had a pack-n-play in the living room and he took all his daytime naps there (or in a sling).

I also loved my sling, but I didn't start using it until he was 3-4 months old. I had received it as a gift but it intimidated me. I finally had someone show me how to use it and both DS & I liked using it. Very versatile.

Lots of spit-up cloths (cloth diapers are cheaper alternative). Things come out of every hole in the baby, sometimes all at once!

I didn't have a Boppy pillow last time but I think I'll get one for this baby--heard good things about them.

I didn't bother to get a bottle-warmer (I BF'd) or wipe-warmer. They seemed unnecessary.

Diaper Genies--people either love them or hate them. I liked it for the first year when you are changing diapers OFTEN. Once DS was older, it wasn't really necessary--not changing diapers as often, plus it fills up quickly with the bigger toddler diapers.

I had the infant carseat/stroller traveller combo thing. It was helpful in the beginning. But not as useful after 10-11 months or so. Babies usually outgrow the infant carseat around 5-6 months old. We used the stroller for a few months longer, but as soon as he was big enough, we switched to the smaller umbrella stroller for less bulk.

We liked the exersaucer from about 4 months old to about 10 months old. We had a hand-me-down from BIL/SIL so I'm not sure how expensive they are. It was good to put DS in while I cooked dinner or to change the laundry. If you don't get one from a baby shower or as hand-me-down, I'd probably skip it to save money.

Clothes are so hard to judge beforehand, so I would limit buying too many clothes right away. Or at least keep all the tags on them until you actually use them (so you can exchange them if needed). My DS was 4 weeks early, so all his 0-3 month clothes were HUGE on him at first (had to go buy some preemie clothes). He was able to wear them for a lot longer than most babies. You could get lots of onesies, in various sizes (0-3, 3-6, 6-9, 9-12, etc.). DS wore them as outfits in the summer, under scratchy clothes, then in the winter months, for extra warmth. Later on, they helped to keep his pants up since he is very skinny. He just turned 3 and has finally outgrown all his onesies a few months ago.

Good luck!


DS 5/01

^i^ 9/03

DS #2 edd 9/19/04

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 06-02-2004 - 11:50am

The best book for advice on this is called "Baby Bargains" by Denise and Alan Fields.

Our Angels
~i~ 9/10/94; ~i~ 12/8/99; ~i~ 11/4/02; ~i~ 2/12/03;
~i~ 4/15

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-12-2004
Wed, 06-02-2004 - 7:28pm
My son LOVED the swing. When he was in there I could actually get something done. He also liked the bouncy seat. Mine vibrated, but he didn't even need it. He just liked to be sitting up and looking around. I never had an excersaucer, but he loved it at the babysitter's house. I know this is kind of common sense, but I stocked up on diapers and wipes everytime that I went shopping. I also had a lot of burp rags and recieving blankets (just in case we had a bad week and we didn't get to do that wash). He also loved his baby gym. (the ones where they lay underneath and the toys are suspended above them. It kept him busy for quite a while when he was a little older and could see farther. There are so many things on the market today, but I didn't see the point in most of them. We did with out a diaper genie. I just used the plastic bags that you get from the grocery store and target or walmart. 1 for just wet and 3 for poopy (that's a technical term). Hope this helps some.


ds 12-28-00

~i~ 1-26-04

edd 1-18-05

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-10-2003
Thu, 06-03-2004 - 11:34am
A boppy pillow is great for helping support your baby while you breastfeed. Then it was great for helping my son sit up & stay up later on.

I received a diaper genie and we used it for about 8 months. We learned quickly that the diaper genie would not contain the smell of poopy diapers. So, we would just put pee diapers in it. Here's a tip on poopy diapers. Seal them in ziploc sandwich bags before putting in the trash can. We learned the hard way that if you don't then it's not long before the trash can smells like that poopy diaper. I'm not even going to use the diaper genie this time around. I found it not to be all that helpful.

Bibs, Bibs & more bibs! I b/f my son for 4 weeks then had to switch over to formula. He spit up so much. I found that the only way to save his outfits and keep them stain free & keep me from changing him 10 times a day were BIBS! I had a stack of about 20+ before it was all said in done. I found that the bibs that snap in the back were better. The velcro would scratch his neck and the velcro gets funny in the dryer.

Cloth diapers are great for burp cloths and also for drying the baby's bottom after using wipes. Water proof pads are a must for the crib & bassinet.

I found that having a good quality large diaper bag was a must. In the beginning there is so much stuff I'd need to take along. (like extra changes of clothes & bibs ect..) When my son got older (1 yr +) I didn't have to take as much stuff. So, this time around I think I'm going to also buy a smaller diaper bag for quick trips to the store & around town.

Baby monitor, swing, bouncy seat,& pack & play were very helpful to me. Once my son started pulling himself up to his feet I found a walker to be a must. He was able to scoot around and freed me up to get some stuff done around the house while he followed me.

I'd also suggest trying different diaper brands until you find one that fits your baby the best and prevents leaks. Cause Leaks are gonna happen. I found that my son would pee right out of the diaper in the beginning. I was having to do 2+ loads of his wash was so frustrating. We finally found that the brand "LUVS" fit his body the best. And if you have a boy, everytime you change him, make sure his little hose is pointing down before you close the diaper. Also, make sure you have a cloth diaper or towel to put on top of him when you take the diaper off....cause when air hits him he's gonna pee ALL over the place. The good news in that department is when he gets older that will get less frequent. I think every new mom of a boy gets a shot of pee in the face. I can laugh about it now! (LOL)


JT: 9-4-00

edd: 9-8-04

(26 weeks!)

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-03-2004
Thu, 06-03-2004 - 10:40pm

We had our first baby in July of 2002. We couldn't live without these 2 items. 1. From JC Penny's the "Swing n Meals". What's cool if they don't have it in the store they'll ship it to you for FREE! It's 100 bucks and worth every penny. It's a swing up until they turn 4 months then it converts to a high chair. We used it until she hit 1 year and we switched to a booster chair. Then the second item... which I think EVERY mom will agree.. is I call it a kangaroo pouch. I used that thing every day. To walk to the dog with her, make dinner with her, eat with her. It was like a I was pg all over again. LOL GOOD LUCK.

Avatar for firstglimpse
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-08-2003
Thu, 06-03-2004 - 11:32pm
You know, it's really hard ... you'll buy the items other mother's swear by only to find your baby has a totally different temperment.

Liam is a very, very calm - nearly sedate - baby, but DID NOT SLEEP!!


Baby Swing, he actually napped in the swing until he was 14-mos old.

Bouncy Seat, one that leaned back far ... not sitting him up. I would use my foot to bounce him to sleep at night. He always woke up when I moved him to bed, but I could easily get him back to sleep if I nursed him (I had to co-sleep, he only slept in 20-40 min. intervals).

Cloth diapers by the multi-dozen. Liam would spit up a lot, plus I had an over productive milk supply so nursing the first 4-mos was MESSY. In a year those diapers are GREAT dust cloths, better than any of my other cloths.

I wish I didn't pay the extra money for a vibrating crib, he hated it & now it's busted.


I wish instead of buying a Baby Bjorn I had bought one of those sling type. I just don't think it craddled him enough. I probably used the expensive piece of equipement 10 times all less then 15 minutes.

Absolutely no clothing that secures from the back... due to the 'back to sleep' babies are restless on their tummies.

Had a better side car. I had a bassinet & the instructions were not very good. They had stuff to make it into a sidecar, but didn't say how to do it & it just seemed it was leveled wrong & the opening was strange ... really wish it was a sidecar & not a stand alone bassinet.


I'm a cheap-stake & did not realize the importance of a glider. I looked at the price of those things, felt they seemed cheap for that price & could not figure out what we'd do with it afterward. BUT YOU NEED SOME SORT OF ROCKING DEVICE IN THE ROOM! We just got new living room furniture & our old chairs rock. They are completely cushioned. They are a little noisy when they rock (they are about 15 yrs old), but they are SO COMFY!! So if you are like I am & gliders don't make sense, then look for living room style chairs that rock & you can see yourself using elsewhere in the house in the years to come.

i.e. I didn't have the rocking chair in his room or my room during his NO sleep phase, may have had some better results if I had not had to rock him in the living room & try to carry the extremely light sleeper up the stairs & into his crib.

More confidence, but I guess only time & experience can give you that!

Bonnie 12/5 (13w5d)

"Only when we are sick of our sickness shall we cease to be sick."

~ Lao-Tzu, from The Tao Te Cheng
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-04-2004
Fri, 06-04-2004 - 2:09am
*onesies!!!! lots of onesies. this i s a clothing staple. love the ones from carters. but i have some from my first son that i have used for my second son. some were from mervyn's (sprockets). won't slide up when baby moves.

*wiggle pants as hannah andersson calls them. are great for winter babies and new borns.

*baby socks. or sock type booties. i had bought some very adorable suede mocassins for my last baby. but i rarely put them on him and he grew out of them faster than he grew into them! and then when i did put them on him, i worried about losing them (or one). what a waste of money.

*soft cotton knit caps. two to alternate between washings. and a bonnet for outings in the sunshine. hard to find masculine ones for boys but they do make them.

i loved having plenty of *recieving blankets. i thought i had too many but turned out i used at least three a day. and they are so handy and fold up small enough to fit in the diaper bag.

the pointy type *nose suction bulb from the hospital.. toss it. the one from the store with a larger tip is way more safe for a screaming, wiggley new born. and you will need it for the first cold virus he will catch. come in handy later too. as well as *baby nail clippers of course. my youngest ds is two and i am still using them on him.

*lansinoh (spelling?). for sore nipples when breatfeeding. hey! and it also came in handy for diaper rash on newborn skin. protects better than desitin. just remember to warm and soften between your fingers before smearing it on. wish list besides for having a dd to put cute dresses on, are a co-sleeper (arms reach) and a baby b-jorn (won't even attempt to spell that french word!) baby carrier/front pack.

the reason for the co-sleeper is because i had the same problems with both my sons--if he wasn't in bed with me i worried about him. when he was in bed with me i worried about rolling on him or every wiggle and every sigh woke me. and i wouldn't dream putting him in the big crib in another room for the first reason. i didn't realize with either sons, how much i would need something for them to sleep in so close to my bed until the need arose. you would think after son #1 the fore-thought wouldn't have eluded me. i ended up using our laundry basket (it's kidney shaped) with a thin comforter folded up as a mattress and covered it with a recieving blanket for my second. i placed this on a short table next to the bed to keep it up off the floor. makeshift bassinet. i would have gotten more sleep had i one of those co-sleepers tho!! i think!! so i want to try one this time.

this reminds me!!! a huge must for bringing home a new born since they tend to explode from either end at any given moment...are those *disposable pads they use in the hospital. i believe they are about 20" sq. with a plastic backing and a gauzey top. i used this under the recieving blanket but over the quilt in the makeshift bassinet.

that is all a i can think of for now. i love compiling lists so i couldn't resist answering this post!!! --anmey

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-20-2004
Sat, 06-05-2004 - 11:12pm
Hi Toby!

Well our DS is almost 6 now, but I still remember all of our favorite things and plan on using them with our DD due 9/13:.)

Here goes...

1) a Boppy...the best baby item ever made! I loved it for nursing or just a great place for him to sit until he was strong enough to sit up by himself.

2) a Gymini 3-D Activity Gym...even when they are very small it's a comfy place to lay with lots of stimulating toys. I suggest the black, white & red color combo. (Anything by Tiny Love is terrific!)

3) Carter gowns...for boys or girls they are the best. They are super soft and extremely easy for diaper changes. Especially in the middle of the night.

4) Diaper Depot & Wipe Warmer...This combo belongs on every changing table. Everything is right there for you and the wipes are nice and warm for little bottoms.

5) An Eddie Bauer Diaper Tote diaper bag...They're small enough to carry everywhere & dad won't mind carrying it either. The side pockets are great for bottles. It also has a changing pad which is a definite! Don't ever put your baby on a public changing table without it...yucky to say the least:.)|21474|209&lview=&cm_cg=&tid=&c=&sc=&lp=v1i005

6) Lots of books & music for your little one...Read, read, read!!! They may be little, but they're listening...even read to them before the arrive. The same goes for music.

I know that I forgot lots of things, but at least it's a start!

Hope this helps a little:.)


DS 9/98

DD due 9/13/04

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-06-2004
Sun, 06-06-2004 - 8:31pm
I really liked my bottle warmer. I had to go out and buy one because I didn't think I'd need it. Since my daugter was premature, she was on a feeding tube initially and then to bottles. The warmer helped a lot!

A lot of people really like these but I had nothing but problems with the baby gowns that are elasticized at the bottom. I found them difficult to use and Charlotte always seemed to get a little tangled in them.

Hope this helps!