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What You Really Need For a Baby: The Bare Essentials

What You Really Need For a Baby The Prudent Homemaker

 

Note: This post contains affiliate links.

 

When I was pregnant with my first baby, money was super tight. I wondered what I really needed for the baby, and everyone would tell me the same thing, "You need everything." 

"But what about __________?" I would ask.

"Oh, yes, you have to have that," they would say.

It didn't seem possible to me that I had to have all of these many things for a baby, but no one could guide me to what a baby really needed, and what I could skip spending money on.

Eight babies later, I've found that a lot of those things people said I had to have (and that I thought I probably didn't) are things I didn't have to have, and even a lot of the things I thought I would need are things I have either done without or gotten rid of (because we rarely or never used them!)

I have received a lot of emails over the years from readers asking what items they have to have and what they can do without, because they have a small budget for their baby.

If you have a small budget and want to make sure you have the essentials, here's my list of what you really need--and remember, you can get almost all of these items used via yard sales, hand-me-downs, children's resale shops, thrift stores, Craig's List, and local Facebook garage sale pages.

 

1. A car seat

It needs to be rear-facing and up-to-date (not expired).  

In the U.S., you must have this in order to take your baby home from the hospital. Even if your children are all born at home, like mine have been, you still need a car seat. You'll also need an infant insert to hold a newborn's head.

 

Sleeping Baby The Prudent Homemaker

 

2. A place for the baby to sleep

More than likely, you'll need a crib of some kind. It can be a small crib, it can be a used crib (try Craig's List, garage sales, Facebook garage sales, and children's resale shops). You'll also need a crib mattress and bedding. For bedding, you need 2 bottom sheets, 2 mattress pads, and 2 blankets. I personally also like waterproof crib pads that go in between the waterproof mattress pad and the sheets; they save you from having to take off the mattress pad every time your child spits up or has a leaky diaper while sleeping.

What you don't need:

A bassinet, a cradle, or a matching bedding set with a quilt. The baby will quickly outgrow the first two, and the big fluffy quilts that come in the sets are too large and too thick. A crib bumper is no longer recommended in the U.S. (as it is considered a suffocation hazard) and is also difficult to tie on and off every time you change the sheets.

Gender-specific crib sheets. If you opt for neutral colors, you can feel good about using the same sheets for each baby (of course you can use pink sheets for a boy, but many people would prefer not to. If you start with a neutral color, you won't have to feel obligated to buy different sheets if you have a baby of the opposite sex later).

Note that many places recommend not using blankets but using sleeping sacks instead. Despite this recommendation, I have never known anyone who didn't use blankets with their baby at some point, whether in the crib, while sleeping elsewhere, while being held, while swaddled, to cover the car seat when the sun in shining in the baby's eyes, or to lay down on the floor for the baby to play on. Chances are good that you won't need to buy any baby blankets; they are a gift that everyone loves to give. I've received over 80 baby blankets with my 8 children!

Receiving blankets are too tiny to be of much use. Many parents prefer a larger muslin blanket like this.

 

3. A place for the crib

This can be in your room or in another room. 

What you don't need:

A decorated nursery. Yes, it's pretty. Your baby will still be just fine without it. Your baby will notice your love and affection more than anything on the walls, a mobile, a rug, or coordinating decorations.

 

4. A place to feed the baby

A chair with arms is the most comfortable option. A place to put your feet up is a bonus but not required. I've nursed most of my children at the computer sitting in the computer chair, because it has arms. This website was started while I fed my 5th baby!

What you don't need:

A glider rocker with matching gliding ottoman.

I really wanted one of these with my first baby. We had 7 chairs at our house when my first was born--4 metal folding chairs that we used as kitchen chairs, 2 computer chairs without arms, and one broken recliner with wood arms. I used the rather uncomfortable recliner with my first two babies, until we bought a computer chair with arms when I had my third. Some type of chair with arms is helpful for nursing or bottle feeding.

 

5. A way to feed the baby

 

If you nurse your baby, you'll need at least 2 to 3 nursing bras. I cannot recommend getting fitted for a nursing bra enough! Department stores have women trained to fit you for a bra, and even if you've been fitted for a regular bra, your size will change when you are nursing. A comfortable nursing bra is important, and a properly fitting bra will be much more comfortable than one that rides up or pinches you.

Nursing pads are essential to keep you from leaking milk through your shirt. I like these disposable ones and these washable ones.

A nursing cover is wonderful for discreetly nursing (and fastening your nursing bra and shirt after you're done nursing). I've used blankets before, but the cover doesn't slip when I'm buttoning my shirt or the baby decides to flail his arms. 

If you're formula feeding, you'll need formula (of course), bottles, nipples with different numbers of holes depending on the baby's age, and a bottle brush.

If you're planning on pumping your own milk, you'll also need those items (minus the formula). You'll need a breast pump. This may be covered by your health insurance.

If you don't know what brand of formula you want to use, you can sign up before your baby is born on different companies' websites, and they'll send you free samples and coupons.

Burp cloths. Babies spit up. Some babies barely spit up, and some babies spit up a lot. Prefold cloth diapers work as great burp cloths, or you can purchase or make some.

 

What you don't need: 

Special nursing clothing. A regular t-shirt and/or button-front shirts work fine. If you like to wear a dress, a button front bodice or a criss-crossing bodice (such as in a wrap or faux wrap dress) will work for nursing.

A nursing pillow. If you really want a pillow, try using a pillow you already have.

A bottle sterilizer. You can wash bottles in the dishwasher, and if you don't have one, you can dip them in boiling water in a pot on the stove--or simply wash them well.

Nursery water. As long as you have clean, safe drinking water where you live, you don't need to mix your formula with bottled water.

 

6. Diapers and Wipes

Cloth or disposable, you'll need something. Baby wipes (cloth or disposable) are also needed. You'll want a place to dispose of the diapers (if disposable) or a bucket to put cloth diapers and wipes in until you're ready to wash them. You'll also want something to put them in until you're ready to use them (a basket, a drawer, etc.) 

Both cloth and disposable diapers can be done on a low budget. I have done both and prefer disposable. I buy the Target brand diapers when they have sale and gift card offers. I use the Costco wipes (a box is $20 but it also goes on sale for $16 a few times a year). I find that one box of wipes lasts me 9 months. I usually spend around $250 a year for disposable diapers and wipes.

You'll likely also want to use a diaper rash ointment and some baby powder.

What you don't need:

A diaper pail. This is one of those items that we registered for, received as a gift, used for the first two children, and then we decided we didn't need it. We had a diaper pail that took regular trash bags. Starting with my third, the babies have all been changed in my room. We found it easy enough to put the diapers in the bathroom trash can (under the sink in a cabinet) and to empty that trash can every day. Emptying it every day is the best way to not have a stinky nursery. If you are changing a baby in a nursery, you may find a trash can with a lid (that you can line with plastic grocery sacks) to be the easiest option.

 

7. A place to change the baby

Somewhere to change diapers is important. If you have a two-story house, you'll want somewhere to change diapers on each level. 

This can be as simple as a waterproof pad. I use a waterproof crib pad with two cloth prefold diapers on top. If the baby spits up on the top or the diaper leaks while changing a diaper, I can replace that cloth diaper with another for the next time. You can also opt for changing the baby on a bath towel folded in half. Both of these options will can be done on a bed or on the floor; I change my babies at the foot of my bed.

A portable diaper changing pad is useful when you leave the house--and you can use in to change the baby on at home, too!

What you don't need:

A changing table. They're an expense that wasn't in our budget with our first, and we made it work without one. It worked fine, and so, 8 babies later, I've never used one. Are they nice? Sure! But if one isn't in your budget, you can put down a waterproof crib pad on your bed or on the floor and change a diaper there (and if you have a two-story home, you might not always change the baby in his room!) Don't stress over having one if it isn't in your budget. I did--but we made it work without, and once I realized we were fine without one, we never bought one, even when we had the money to do so.

 

8. A place to wash the baby

I had a baby bathtub that I used with each of my eight babies, and I gave it away after our eighth. I won't be getting another one for my ninth.

I only used the baby bathtub on occasion, when my babies were younger than four months. After that age, you can sit up (while you hold the child) a baby in the kitchen sink for a bath. 

Most of the time, however, we bathed the baby by having dad hold the baby in the shower while I washed the baby (standing right outside the shower). This was the simplest way for us and why we rarely used the baby bathtub.

Used baby bathtubs are usually free for the asking; people can't seem to give them away. If you want one, ask around, and the chances are pretty good that you can find one for a song or even for free.

You'll want some baby soap. I highly recommend smelling the different brands if you can before you commit to a brand; you may find that you like the scent of some and hate the scent of others. This is a gift that you may receive in a baby shower, too, giving you the chance to try out a couple of different brands in small bottles.

A couple of small, soft baby washcloths are nice, but you can also use a regular washcloth.

What you don't need:

Baby towels; they are rather small and thin. They never kept my babies warm when taking them from the bath (even when it's 78ºF in my house half the year) and my babies outgrew them in the first few months. A regular towel will do just fine, be large enough, and be thick enough to keep your baby warm between the bath and getting dressed (and not be too wet to dry your baby like the thin, tiny baby towels).

 

8. Clothes for the baby (and a place to put them)

There is a reason so many people say that their baby outgrew clothing before it was already worn. If you have more baby clothes than you need, this can easily be a problem.

If you have a baby shower and people know what sex the baby is, you will most likely receive a lot of clothing, and it will quite possibly all be in the 0-3 month size. Don't be afraid to exchange clothing for a larger size.

A new baby spends most of his time sleeping. When your baby is less than 3 months old, you can easily have the baby wear pajamas all day long.

How many clothes you need in each size depends on a couple of things: how often your baby spits up, how often your baby has a leaky diaper, how many times you want to change the baby's clothing, and how often you do laundry. How many layers you need will depend on the season, the climate you live in, how warm you keep your house, whether or not you keep your baby swaddled in a blanket, and if you take the baby outdoors often or keep the baby inside.

Baby clothes are often freely handed down; you can quickly end up with more than you will use. They are also a great buy at garage sales.

Any dresser will do for your baby; if your baby is in your room, one designated drawer will keep all of your baby clothes handy. Baby hangers are very helpful for hanging clothes in a baby's room (or in your own closet, if the baby is in your room) and you'll use the fo years until your children need adult-sized hangers.

What you don't need:

Baby shoes. Babies won't need shoes until they are walking, and even then, they will do best barefoot most of the time. My babies have almost all walked early (at 9 months) and I don't purchase shoes until they have been walking for a few months. 

12 of everything. 6-8 of most items of clothing per size is more than sufficient if you do laundry every couple of days. A couple of hats (or even just one) when your baby is brand-new to the world are useful, but you'll quickly no longer need them (and your baby will quickly outgrow them).

Special baby detergent. Babies clothing can be washed with your regular clothing. You will want stain removers.

 

9. A few hygiene items

Baby nail clippers are one of the best things ever.

A small comb with fine teeth works well for combing fine baby hair--but it doesn't have to be a special baby comb. 

A nasal aspirator (referred to as a "booger sucker" at my house) is extremely helpful in unclogging a stuffy baby's nose. The larger the aspirator, the better; tiny ones are not worth your money.

What you don't need:

Baby brushes. These usually come packaged with a baby comb and sometimes with nail clippers. If your baby has fine hair, a comb is more useful than a brush. 

Special wipes for the baby's nose.

 

10. Baby medicine

When your baby is fussy, crying, and won't sleep, it can be overwhelming. It's helpful to have a few items in the medicine cabinet before your baby is born.

Gas drops. The store brand of these works just fine, as this tiny bottle can be expensive. I always find I need these in the middle of the night the first couple of weeks after my babies are born, when they won't stop crying and arching their backs from stomach pain.

Baby acetaminophen. Babies can only have acetaminophen during the first six months to reduce fevers. You can add infant ibuprofen to your medicine cabinet after that.

Garlic Ear Drops. These are amazing. Everyone I've told about these (and loaned my bottle to) has ended up keeping the bottle and buying me a new one, because they loved the product so much! If your baby (or child, or YOU) has an earache, these drops get rid of it very quickly (only 4 times have I ever needed to administer a second round of drops), and save you a trip to the doctor for an earache (and ten days of antibiotics)!

Oral Relief Tablets. I found these easier to administer and more effective than teething ointment.

 

11.  A stroller

I thought I needed a large stroller that my car seat could clip into, with a big basket underneath and a place for me to put a drink.

By the time my third baby was born, I had used that stroller less than 10 times with my first 2.

When I went shopping, I would put the baby's carseat into the shopping cart. Once the baby was bigger, I would put the baby right in the child seat in the cart. Most places I shopped (grocery stores and big box stores) had carts, so this worked fine.

When we went places, I usually found it easiest to just carry the baby. I rarely needed the stroller.

Eventually, I bought a smaller umbrella stroller at a garage sale for $7 (after my 5th was born). We were going a few more places and I found the lightweight stroller to be so much easier to use. I sold the big stroller at a garage sale.

Whether or not you need a stroller (and what kind) really depends on your lifestyle. Realize, too, that you may decide to stay home more once you have a baby.

 

Ivory Baby Toys The Prudent Homemaker

 

12. A few baby toys

Babies are curious about new things. Once they've learned all about something, they often tire of it and want to learn about something new. Once they can crawl and walk, they no longer want baby toys--they want to play with everything else in the house (including everything in your kitchen cabinets).

Before our eighth was born, I narrowed down the baby toys to the toys my young babies liked the most, and I donated everything else. What we kept for our eighth baby included the following: Sophie the Giraffe, Oball shaker, and Links

 

What you don't need:

A bouncer, a swing, playmats, and large baby toys that take up huge amounts of space. 

None of these made my babies happy. The baby would constantly slide sideways in the bouncer and preferred just to be held, and once the baby was 4 months old, all of my babies preferred time on a blanket on the floor instead. The swing had similar issues, and once I had a couple of children, the swing became something that the toddler just want to push really high and really fast! Every mom told me these were necessary items, but we found that they weren't something we had to have at all.

 

13. A diaper bag--or something to carry your baby supplies in when you leave the house

You don't have to have an actual diaper bag with pockets for bottles inside. If you bottle feed, they are certainly helpful, but any bag will work to transport diapers, wipes, a baby blanket, a nursing cover, bottles and formula, burp cloths, a diaper changing pad,  and a change of baby clothing. You can use a large purse, a backpack, or a tote bag.

I found it heavy to carry around a large number of supplies in a diaper bag while also carrying a baby (or a sleeping baby in the carseat!). To make my life easier (and to relief the back pain) I started keeping a large container of wipes, several diapers, and an infant bodysuit in the car. In my bag I have 2 to 3 diapers and a small container of wipes (and when I am nursing, I have a nursing cover, 2 burp cloths, and a change of clothing for the baby). With a one-year-old currently in diapers, I can fit a couple of diapers and a small package of wipes in my vintage 1950's handbag, and I don't have to carry a large bag.

What you don't need:

A designer diaper bag.

 

14. A high chair and baby feeding supplies

You won't need this until your baby is able to sit up and eat food. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends starting babies on solids at 6 months or slightly later.

Baby bibs are important for feeding to keep your baby from staining his clothes. The larger the bib, the more of the baby's clothing that is protected. I use homemade bibs in dark colors (so that I don't need to use stain remover) that are large enough to cover their entire outfit. In the beginning, at 6 months, I'll use a slightly smaller bib that covers their entire torso.

Two baby spoons is more than enough for a baby; you can quickly wash them by hand and have them ready to use.

You can mash up what you're having; steamed fruits and vegetables are easy items to give to your baby. A blender can be used to puree your food and you can freeze food in ice cube trays to use later to feed your baby if you're making a bunch at once.

What you don't need:

Baby cereal, individual baby food containers, teething cookies, Cheerios, veggie straws, and toddler food. These can quickly add up and make your grocery budget double, with half the budget going towards baby food!

Not convinced you can do without baby food? French Kids Eat Everything is a book I highly recommend getting from the library and reading at least once! I watched the truthfulness of this when a French friend of mine came to visit and gave his 8-month-old steamed broccoli from his own plate at dinner at our house. The baby loved it!

 

Every mother is different, and every mother has her own personal favorites that she has to have. You'll find favorite brands of baby products, favorite kinds of baby blankets, and favorite products. You may find you can't live without some of the items that I mentioned as not being needs, and that's okay! In the end, you are the parent, and you get to choose what you want for your babies.

 

Ivory Blessing Day The Prudent Homemaker

 

 You may also enjoy reading: Our Baby Naming Day Tradition

 

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Comments

  • Colleen Dutton Cook February 21, 2018

    As a mom of girls born with thick curly hair a baby brush is definitely used daily.
    We did not use a car seat carrier for any of the 4. We preferred car seats that stay in the car and to hand carry our babies why add the extra weight the car seat when carrying your baby. Yes even sleeping babies.
    Nordstrom and Nordstrom rack will convert any regular bar they sell into a nursing bra (in the past 2 yrs ago this was a free service could have changed by now) you can find very inexpensive bras at tbe rack around ten dollars. Maybe worth a try for hard to find sizes.
    I also strongly recommend a boppy pillow! Mine was used continuously for nursing and for the baby to lay and sit in. I see them at the thrift store quite often and find covers for them in with the linens.
    I never used a crib...because I am a softy but do love a pack and play not only bc they are small and can be placed next to my bed and or moved to other rooms but they also are a safe place to place baby when you need to run to the ladies room or are doing a chore like cooking/cleaning. For me I find babies are happier when they can see you. This is not a need but I prefer not to have a screaming baby so we have used a back pack carrier (in the house) to carry baby around while cooking, folding laundry, washing dishes...ect. Keeps baby happy and entertained while we get tgings down with peace in the home.

  • Brandy @ The Prudent Homemaker February 21, 2018

    Colleen, I have never heard of a store converting regular bras into nursing bras! That is very interesting. Nordstrom sells ONE brand (of regular bra)that comes in my size; everything else is bigger. Macy's doesn't even sell anything my size and told me to go to Nordstrom's. Walmart sells smaller cup sizes (of regular bras; no nursing bras) but they are ALL push-up bras with about 4 inches of padding. (Talk about false advertising, ha! To me it says, "You're not good enough if you aren't a C cup, so we have to add enough padding to make you that size." ) I think that's why the Boppy pillow never worked for me.

    And at a lot of stores, the nursing bras only seem to be in stock in cup size G. I need new ones this time and I have been looking!

    I think there is a Nordstrom rack in town. $10 would be an amazing price if I could find my size and have it converted.

    I had luck at Dillard's 16 years ago, but now our store is just a clearance outlet---great for regular clothing, but not good when you need to purchase something so specific.

  • Julie February 21, 2018

    I am not a big advocate for credit cards, but if Nordstrom's doesn't do it for free, if you have their card, they give you a $100 credit for alterations every year (either at Nordstroms or the Rack). It might be worth getting a card (and keeping no balance) for this purpose alone. Just a thought.

  • Chris M February 21, 2018

    Brandy,
    I and one of my daughters have just the opposite problem -- too big! I was able to get her a nursing bra at the hospital shop. This was available at two hospitals where she had babies. They had the best selection and it was the only place we could find her size. You might call and see what's available in your area.

  • Brandy @ The Prudent Homemaker February 21, 2018

    Thanks Chris. I looked at Motherhood online and they look like they might have some options for me, so I am going to have to visit their store before the baby is born.

  • Sarah in Maryland February 23, 2018

    So funny! I wear a G cup and have had an awful time finding anything in my size (nursing or otherwise) especially without spending a fortune!

  • Kathy February 23, 2018

    there are kits where you can buy the findings for nursing bras and convert them for yourself... You're so talented with sewing that I bet you could do this easily!

    http://www.sewsassy.com/BraProducts/nursing-bra-clasps.html

  • Rochelle May 29, 2018

    also see http://crafts.sleepingbaby.net/braconvert.html
    she has lots of other thrifty suggestions for some of these more and less necessary baby items

  • Kelly February 26, 2018

    When you have larger breasts as I do, there is NO nursing bra that will fit properly. I went to Motherhood Maternity and bought one that was supposed to be my size and it was the most uncomfortable thing. I ended up just wearing my regular bras from Lane Bryant. I am a DDDD cup. And surprisingly, even though I breastfed, my breasts didn't get bigger. I even had weight loss surgery 5 years after my son was born and they didn't get smaller with the weight loss. Funny how we are all different. I used the Boppy pillow for him to sit in...not for feeding.

  • Kris February 21, 2018

    Colleen, I agree that a pack and play can be really handy. Our families were out of town when we had babies, so travel was a must, and having a ready-made bed for baby was helpful (1 sheet for it is plenty--and my pack and play came with a bassinet which we used for baby #2 the first 2 months).

    Brandy, yes, I think Boppy pillows are great for larger breasted women, and I can see where they wouldn't otherwise work. I definitely needed one. I can assure you that trying to find a decent nursing bra when you are on the other end of the bra cup size spectrum is also very challenging. I never found one I loved with either child. I think manufacturers cater to 80% of the population and the rest of us on either end have few, if any, good options. The frustration continues for me with finding swimming suits that fit--I am not overweight, just large-chested, and finding something that supports and covers me which doesn't cost $200 is close to impossible. Apparently I need to be 3 sizes larger than I am to find something to fit my chest. We live near lots of lakes so going to the beach is a frequent activity in the summer for us. Sorry for the segue in this conversation--this is just an ongoing source of frustration for me!

  • Athanasia February 26, 2018

    Kris, you should look up the Lands End catalog on line. They sell hundreds of suits, one piece, 2 piece, mix and match, even mastectomy suits. That is where we (women) get our swim suits as we can get very modest type swimwear. Since you buy the pieces separate you could have a small size for the bottom half and then a larger size for the top.

  • Melissa V February 21, 2018

    My "changing table" for my daycare was an antique sideboard that I placed a pad on top of. I used the bathroom counter for when we needed to change ours in the upper level.
    I LOVED receiving blankets to use as burp rags - I had some heavy spit uppers and it covered a lot more area and I had to change clothes for baby and myself less often.
    Swings take up a huge amount of space but were a godsend when I took care of colicky infants.
    Also, a baby backpack was a necessity for me. I used it while shopping, cooking dinner (anything where I needed 2 hands), going on outtings like to the zoo (they can't see much from a stroller) and it allowed me to hold 2 little ones at once. Mine also had a small bag attached to it so I didn't need an extra diaper bag. My son was a rather attached baby who always had to be in on what was going on - he HATED the front packs so by about 3 weeks old, he was in the backpack (he could hold his head pretty steady at birth) unless he was nursing because I had my daycare baby to care for as well as 3 other toddlers. Once he was moving on his own (he was crawling by 5 months and standing by 6 months), we didn't need to use it as much.
    And the baby toys - UG some of them take up a huge floor area - oh and the stuffed toys.....most of those went away real quick. Babies love textures to chew on since they do a lot of learning by mouthing things so the baby toys I kept around were mostly items with varied textures and easy grips. Board books were also important to us and can be picked up at garage sales for pennies.
    One other tip - make a list of items you need or want and when people ask you'll have a ready answer - and diapers and formula (or nursing supplies) are not bad things to ask for!

  • Laura Lee February 21, 2018

    By the time I had my 3rd boy, I had realized that I did not need any of the big things, bouncers, etc. They loved to lay on a blanket on the floor and just look around a couple toys to grab were all they needed and hand me down clothes worked great!

    With my first I had received a lot of clothes as you said in the smallest size. I exchanged them all for larger sizes there were just too many clothes! I didn't have to buy anything till my oldest was almost 2 as I had been able to exchange things for larger sizes!

  • Ingrid Lanford February 21, 2018

    I'm finished with the child bearing days, but have joyfully moved to the grandparent stage in life. I babysit our grandson 2-3 days a week, and we still use our crib and changing table we had when our kids were babies. May be a little scuffed, but still works great! I got all my toys, swing and baby bouncer at a local Habitat for Humanity ReStore store that has a $5 bag sale. He has sooooo many toys that I put out only so many each time so I alternate to keep him from getting bored. Of course I washed and sterilized everything first, but he was stocked and ready to go for under $25 ! I also scored a FREE walker that was sitting by curb at one of my neighbors house. Nothing wrong, just missing giraffes that were supposed to be on it. Called company and those 2 giraffes were going to be almost $25 to replace. So being my frugal self, we improvised and put tennis balls over notches so he wouldn't poke eyes. Works like a charm! Only problem we have is our dogs try to play with them after grandson leaves LOL

  • kim February 21, 2018

    We are considering baby #3. With our first two, an electric swing was my best friend! They took their naps during the day in it. However it takes up a lot of space and we sold it for $20. If we have a third, I can totally see my toddler swinging one like crazy so I'm glad to hear your support that it isn't necessary.
    I bought an entire stash of clothes diapers because I had Kohls cash and couldn't find anything else to buy. I never used them much. Like you, I buy from target during sales and spend about $250/year. Its hard to beat that price and not having to do more laundry! I work Tuesdays and Fridays and my mil was not going to use cloth diapers. She buys diapers for her house so I might only spend $200/year.
    Since we live on gravel roads a good big stroller is a must for walks. It folds nicely into my trunk.
    I can't believe how much I bought into those "needs" with my first. I researched all the baby formulas and after 9 weeks my first was using formula. My second I breastfed for 9 months. With a third, I would try for 12 months. I can't believe the crap in some baby formulas. I wish I had read more about the benefits of breastfeeding. With type 1 diabetes in my family, I had no idea breastfeeding lowers the risk of developing it! Now, I'm so much more knowledgeable about what's the healthiest for myself and my baby.
    I loved this post! You totally inspire me that I can handle another child!

  • Rhonda A. February 22, 2018

    Kim, I appreciate your sentiments on breast feeding, but sometimes it doesn't work out for everyone. My milk never came in, and my daughter was not getting the nutrition she needed. So I quickly switched to bottle feeding for her benefit. At least 2 of my cousins told me they also had a problem. I am quite aware of the benefits of breast feeding, and the financial benefits too. But for those women who are not able to breast feed, they shouldn't be made to feel guilty or scared that their children are not getting a healthy suppliment with formula. After all, many of us were raised on formula and we turned out just fine!

  • kim February 22, 2018

    I totally agree with you. I just wish I had been more educated about the benefits of bf. I was raised on formula and am healthy so I can't complain. But in regards to type 1 diabetes I would have tried even harder and fought through mastitis if I thought I could lower my babies risk of getting type 1 since it is in my family. Being a new mother is very challenging and I just wish I had more support for bf than I received.
    I'm not trying to bash formula or the moms that choose it. I realize there can be a lot of things to overcome to successfully bf and some mother's choose not to.

  • Olga February 23, 2018

    Actually, I haven't seen studies that bf prevents type1. The only conclusions from properly put together scientific studies is decrease in number of diarrhea cases and colds for world 1 countries. Scepticalob.com has been debunking those false beliefs for years now but they still linger

  • kim March 01, 2018

    Oh that is interesting. I will have to read more about it. Thanks.

  • Mel February 21, 2018

    Brandy- as good of a seamstress as you are you should try making some bras. I have not made any completely, but I am hard-to-fit so I buy a size larger than I really need then customize! I have never found one as good as I can improvise. However I have seen good seamstresses make some really nice ones...

    In my last post I forgot to mention that the man gave us a large playpen. It was the old-fashioned type that was actually large enough for the baby to play. The pack-n-plays they sell now are so small.

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