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POPULAR BABY ITEMS YOU PROBABLY DON'T NEED

As a spin-off from my last post, I wanted to talk about the popular items out there that may not be worth it to register for or purchase. Every mom and every baby is so different, it's really hard to know what products will save your sanity and which will sit in the basement hardly used. I know moms that use the items below and swear by them, despite the fact that their only purpose in my house is dust collection.

Take this advice with a grain of salt. Your baby may be a Bumbo baby, but I would recommend borrowing these items from other mom friends (or buying them cheap on mom swap groups) before diving in and paying full price for something you may or may not use.

Bumbo

While it's an extremely popular registry item for new moms (it was on my registry too) this was a miss for me. I did use it, just not muchβ€”and for close to $60, it simply wasn't worth it. Hear me out.

As a nursing mom, I tried my hardest to follow the CDC recommendations to breastfeed exclusively until six months (when Grayson started reaching for our food at five(ish) months, of course I encouraged baby-led weaning). But the point is, if you follow recommendations to wait to introduce solids until six(ish) months, at that point they are likely starting to sit up on their own, which means a high chair is perfectly adequate for feedings. The bumbo was just something I used occasionally (for feeding or just sitting) because it was in the house.

Bath mat to protect knees

This was given as a gift from my dear MIL (a great gift giver), and we did use it periodically, but it's also something that is definitely taking up space that I don't have in my bathroom. A regular towel or bathmat (that you likely already own and matches your bathroom decor) serves the same purpose.

Also, I get my toddler in and out of the bath in about 15 minutes (it was even less with a newborn), so I'm not kneeling for an extended period of time. For moms that allow more playtime in the tub, this may be a necessity!

Wrappy-type baby carriers

I used the Baby K'tan during the newborn phase. It was cozy for using around the house, but it did require a lot of readjusting with my movement. My husband and I also both used the Baby Bjorn original (adjustable for both my small 5/4 frame and his large 6/3 frame) which was great for shopping, hiking, and generally being out and about. 

But, when I was given a hand-me-down Ergo Carrier, it changed the game. I had heard good things about it before, but to me it was just another pricey item I deemed unnecessary (I said the same about pregnancy pillows). Boy, was I wrong. The Ergo was insanely comfortable and took a lot of strain out of babywearing. We used it on a trip where we hiked with my oversized 14 month old, and it was amazing.

The wrap-style carrier simply didn't feel as stable as a carrier with buckles and clasps and backpack-style straps to keep the baby firmly inside.

All the baby toiletries

I may be alone on this, but I didn't use the majority of the baby lotions, washes, diaper creams, etc. that were deemed must-haves. Like most soon-to-be moms, I was enticed by all the lotions, creams, and oils made by my beloved Burt's Bees, so I made sure to register for all the best stuff.

But, I happened to have a baby that never suffered from much diaper irritation at all, so all the powders, creams, and ointments just sat mostly unused. Honestly, the only products I used the first year were Burt's Bees natural lotion and Dr. Bronners washβ€”both which took me a year to use a single container. You may find you need more products, but I will say confidently that you don't need to stock up as much as you think you do. Start with the basics and just get a single container of each item.

My one caveat: when eczema and windburn popped up this winter, the not-quite-as-natural but trusted classic Aquaphor has been a godsend. But again, a tiny tube has lasted us a long time, so no need to stock up!

Bath toys with holes in them

A lot of bath toys out there look super cute, like the set we originally received at our shower with dolphins, whales, turtles, etc. Grayson loved them, and especially loved that water squirted out of them (not so much fun for mom and dad). But not long after opening  and using them, I noticed that the water squirting out of them looked...uh...less than clean. Upon further research I found that those type of toys are not recommended (hello mold buildup).

Instead, I replaced the rubbery animals with a simple set of plastic boats (find them here for less than $3), and Gray has never been happier. I was also able to re-purpose the old bath toys for use in the outdoor water table, which means he isn't getting those extra germs in his bath, just on his hands when he plays with the table. I may be OK with my kid playing in the dirt and splashing in ponds, but when it comes to bath time I like to keep it clean.

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