Well – I am 34 weeks pregnant now and I am happy to say that I’m still in one piece… barely. I am committing to blog once a week between now and when I deliver and then through my “maternity leave”.
So here recently, my husband and I had to make the decision what we were going to register for. With two other little boys, you would think we have everything we need. NOT THE CASE! Problem is, we thought we were done with our little angels, but a few weeks after we found out we were moving, we learned baby #3 was on the way. So, in those few weeks of purging, we sold a lot of baby items. Not, we are rebuilding our stock of little blue toys, educational infant movies, and random teethers. What do you register for now a days though? Everyone has an opinion and mine includes the following. (I found the Baby Registry info online and added my comments to the side)… enjoy!
- Infant car seat – Yes, you must have this to even go home from the hospital. If you get it 2nd hand, check online for recalls. The hospital will check the car seat model and if it’s had any issues or too old, you can’t take your new bundle of joy home! My recommendation – Buy name brand and buy it new. This IS something you want to splurge on!
- Car seat base for 2nd car–Trust me – Worth it! Don’t try to take the base out of one car and put it into another car. Tell the grandparents to get one for their cars too if they are going to be involved in the child’s life more than just vacations to see the family.
- Convertible car seat– This can actually wait and not be put on your registry because you won’t need it until 4 – 6 months or later. My opinion is though, get one that converts ALL THE WAY to a booster seat… worth the extra money!
- Booster car seat – Just get a convertible car seat that goes all the way to the booster!
- Car seat toys – don’t have this on your infant car seat in the hospital! They will make you take it off for fear of an accident and these things coming off. I understand but they made us take them off before we could put our son in the seat.
- Shopping cart cover – For an infant? Seriously… you don’t need this until later if you need it at all. We got one and took it back because I can never remember to take the eco-friendly bags into the store let alone a shopping cart cover (most of which double as a high chair cover in restaurants)! They make sense, but I buy the germ-x wipes and just wipe the cart down before putting my toddler into the seat.
- Car seat comfort & accessories –Not sure what they are talking about here.
- Travel system – Yes, if you want the matching stroller with the car seat… that’s the benefit but I wanted a different brand of stroller than car seat. They all fit into one another now a days. Just take your car seat with you when you shop for a stroller or register for one. (Just to check)
- Full-size stroller – Yes, if you don’t get a travel system. My recommendation is get a good one and splurge on this. You never know when/where you’ll use it as those little bundles of joy pack on the pounds and you get tired of carrying them. Get one that reclines back for your child.
- Lightweight stroller– yes, if you’re traveling. I only say that because we had our $300 stroller lost by an airline and they finally got it back to us after 3 weeks! What a pain!
- Mid-size stroller – You don’t need a full size, lightweight, jogging and mid-size stroller… find one stroller you really like and stick with it.
- Jogger stroller – My recommendation is unless you’re a big runner, get a really good stroller that you can take on the road, collapses well, and will go over many terrains. Just my experience as we had one of each and it was a waste of money.
- Double & triple stroller– DUH, if you have more than 1 under 4. If you have a 4 year old who can walk, they won’t be able to fit into it much longer but if you have 2 really young ones or more… or twins … yes… and get one that will function as a full size stroller and jogging. Here is where you want to splurge but do your homework… it will pay off in the end.
- Stroller comfort & accessories – not sure what they mean here but accessories are over rated.. cup holder for the parent.. ? Get it if you think you’ll actually use it. I did buy stroller hooks and they are worth it.
- Stroller toys – Any toy can be turned into a stroller toy… my recommendation is to invest in those plastic hooks or tether your toys to the stroller so in the off chance your child tosses the toy and you don’t see it… they won’t be gone forever!
- Stroller diaper bag – This is silly to get a different diaper bag for your stroller. Get one diaper bag that will be functional for all areas or your life.
backpacks & carriers
- Backpacks – We got a backpack that also carries the child by Kelty… it was a God send when traveling in Maine when we were walking and the stroller would have been a pain!
- Front & back soft carriers – I went through a million types and you will too until you learn the style you like/want. This also goes for slings and wrap carriers. I know many women who like the organic look/style, some like the peanut shell, some like the name brand, some like the hip… test our a few but test them when your baby gets here. Many look cute but my son refused to lay in a peanut shell! Keep your receipts!
- Sling & wrap carriers– see above.
play yards/travel yards
- Play yards/travel yards – Yes, get a pack and play that is convertible and easy to pack up for travel. We used ours as a bassinet for our first born in our bedroom.
- Play yards/travel yards sheets (Qty: 2-3) –Not really needed… Just my 2 cents.
- Stationary entertainers – It’s fine but like all toys, you can go nuts and buy your child everything but they won’t look at them until 4 – 6 months old.
- Walkers – You won’t use this until 6 months so do you really need to register for it?
- Gyms & playsets – get one for your infant to lay on their back and kick the mat. Our son LOVED his.
- Bouncers – Do your homework but our son loved his bouncer
- Swings – YES, YES, YES – Greatest invention ever!
- Door jumpers – not needed if you get a bouncer but easier to transport if you need to.
- Infant positioned – They say you aren’t suppose to co-sleep so I have nothing to say about this other than we tried 2 and our son wiggled out of both. We just used a bassinet/pack and play next to our bed.
feeding & nursing
- Warmers & sterilizers – Yes, maybe. Warmer no… sterilizers… yes. Get one where you wash the bottle then stick it into the micro to sanitize it. Cheaper than the type you plug in and quicker than the dishwasher!
- Burping cloths (Qty: 6-12) – yes, get them for spit ups…
- Cloth diapers (Qty: 6-12) – we use cloth diapers for burp rags… that’s about it though.
- Lap pads (Qty: 6) – Um… no
- Bibs (Qty: 8-12) – yes, invest invest invest in these! If not for food, for the times your child drools!!
- Breastpump – This is where you invest your money again in something good if you plan on going back to work or you plan to continue to breast feed. I tried for 2 months and my son didn’t want to participate in this action at all. I pumped for a few months so he could still get the benefit. Great item if you invest in a good one!
- Breast pads, shields & cream – You will leak so get the pads! I recommend disposable. The washable ones are fine but you have to wash them and then you lose one and not the other like socks! Shields are good too but consult your doctor for the necessary uses for them. Cream… YES!! Load up on good cream specifically for breastfeeding mothers so the baby won’t be hurt if they ingest some of it.
- Breast milk storage– I recommend the storage bags that come with the Medela system… also Dr. Brown bottles fit on the Medela system along with most other narrow mouthed bottles.
- Containers or bags – Bags? See above.
- Nursing pillow & stool – Nursing pillow isn’t necessary. I just used a bunch of our pillows at the house. A stool though is highly recommended from my experience.
- Nursing wrap/cover– If you plan to breast feed – Yes. Especially in public. It’s hard when you’re new to fumble with this but do it at home a number of times with your wrap before trying it out in public. I’m a little modest so I highly recommend this.
- Bottles for formula (Qty: 6-8) – Yes, you’ll need 6 – 8 bottles because you’ll be amazed if you don’t wash them EVERY few hours how quick you go through them. Even if you plan to breast feed… get a few to have on stand by. Just in case!! I planned to breast feed and my son didn’t want to participate in this lovely activity.
- Bottle nipples – If you buy bottles, you’ll get nipples with them but check the age on them. They have 1, 2, 3, and 4 … and Y shaped holes in the nipples… size 1 is for little ones all the way up to Y shaped to let older babies get cereal and milk out.
- Bottle drying rack – use a rag and turn the bottles up side down.
- Bottle brush – highly recommend but get a new one every month or so… like a sponge, they will go back.
- Dishwasher caddy – I recommend the mesh ones… easiest to use and we went through quite a few.
- Insulated tote– Yes, get one but you might go through a few different ones. I recommend getting one that can fit in your baby bag and will remain standing up in the bag. If it tips over, they can leak if the bottle leaks.
- Feeding sets – You won’t be feeding your little one solids for a few months so there’s no reason to register for this right away.
- Training cups – see above… Training cups came for us after 12 months.
- Infant spoons (for home) – get a few but you won’t use them for a number of months.
- Baby food processors & accessories – great if you are going to make organic baby food. I wasn’t so ambitious so I didn’t register for one.
- High chairs – YES… but you won’t be using this until 6 months …
- High chair cover – To cover what? NO!
- Splat mat – Maybe for your toddler at the kitchen table but most high chairs come with a plastic piece that comes off of the main tray to wash.
- High chair toys – Not necessary in my opinion
- Extra high chair pad – Maybe but just take the dirty one off and wash it. We made it through our first child without issue.
- Booster seats – Yes, but you won’t use it until 12 months or later.
- Splat mat – Yes, but see above. You won’t use for a long while.
- Feeding accessories – get spoones, forks, etc later on. Trust me! You won’t use them for a while.
bath & potty
- Bathtub & seat – Yes, get a baby bathtub that converts into an older baby one.
- Washcloths (Qty: 8-12) – We bought disposable ones or we used ours. Waste of money in my opinion.
- Hooded bath towels (Qty: 4-6) –Don’t waste your money. They are cute but unpractical. Get a super cute towel instead that’s just his/hers.
- Bath robe – again, waste of money in my opinion.
- Gentle shampoo & body wash – yes, get baby stuff… splurge!
- Baby lotion– get a bottle but we didn’t use it too often.. no need to go nuts.
- Bath accessories – we got a duck that went over the faucet.. helps him from hitting their head as they get older but a pain for guests to get off to use the shower feature of the bath tub!
- Bath toys – They will use more as they get older.
- Step stool – Not for the bathroom but yes, in general. You don’t want your child to crawl over and into the tub before you’re ready for them to jump in.
- Travel folding potty set –Have you ever seen a potty trained infant… get this later.
- Stand alone potty seat – get this later. You won’t be potty training until 12 months or later.
- Toilet training seat (ring) – see above. Not for an infant registry.
baby care & grooming
- Nail clippers – Maybe but for a little one, it’s a waste of money. The best advice I ever got was to bite their nails off rather than clip because you won’t cut the skin.
- Brushes & comb – If you have a little girl, but no need to get a goofy little baby brush. They are cute but impractical.
- Digital thermometer – yes, get a quick reading one. No one likes the thermometer you know where!
- Ear thermometer – We never got one because of the cost and we can just quickly take their temp in the rear. Waste of money in my humble opinion.
- Grooming kit – Maybe, but not at the top of my recommendations to register for.
- First aid kit– Yes, yes yes!! Babies can’t take the same medications we can…
- Humidifier/vaporizer – You’ll thank yourself if your baby is sick in the winter. Great items.
- Baby mittens – keep your babies nails short and you don’t need these.
- Lotion– I think I mentioned this above.. get a bottle but you don’t go through tons of it!
- Baby oil – I think I used mine twice. Since then, I use it for my hair but not on our son. Lotion is better.
- Cotton swabs – get baby cotton swabs – regular ones are too little for baby ears and can go in too far.
- Cotton balls – We had 3 tons in the house but we didn’t use them that much with our son. Register for some but don’t go nuts.
- Petroleum jelly – Eh… just get really good butt paste for diaper rash. Some kids react differently to different types. Get small trial sizes of a few if you can and try them out to see which one works best on your baby’s bottom.
- Gas relief drops – Never used it…
- Teethers– Our son didn’t like the frozen kind but liked the others that you didn’t freeze.
- Pacifiers – Our son didn’t like them but get a few different types and see what type they like. You don’t want to get a single kind and your child doesn’t like them.
- Pain relief products– YES! Baby/infant specific but consult your doctor first.
diapers & formula
- Diapers – Yes, of course. But don’t buy TOO many new born. We bought a bunch and our son was 10 lbs. He was in size 1 when he was born. Keep receipts. Oh, and buy in bulk.. you’ll need them… trust me.
- Baby wipes – again, buy in bulk!!
- Diaper pail refills– I think a diaper pail is a waste of money. Buy little garbage bags or use plastic shopping bags to throw them out.
- Wipe warmer – Do you really need this? No… if you are out and about, you won’t have a diaper warmer so you don’t need it at home.
- Diaper pail – take it out after you change your little bundle… you don’t need a special diaper pail.
- Formula– Don’t go nuts buying one type… your child may not like the type you buy or have a special need for soy or other types.
- Diaper bags – Get a nice one, splurge! Get one that will be practical and will fit your life style. I’ve gone through a bunch trying to find the perfect one.
- Baby changing mat– Yes, great item. We bought a diaper bag and the pad came with it.
- Diaper ointment – yes, get trial sizes and make sure the ointment agrees with your little one’s bottom.
- Travel wipes– Rather than travel wipes – Get a travel case for wipes and put some of your bulk wipies in the travel case!
- Audio monitor – Yep… it’s a staple. Get one that lasts too and splurge. If you go outside, you want it to go with you and not die in 30 minutes!
- Video monitor – Get it if you want but don’t register for both the audio and video. I don’t think this is necessary unless you have a mansion and you can’t run to your baby without doing a marathon.
- Cabinet/drawer latches– You’ll need these later on but not right away.
- Safety gates – You’ll need it later on, not right away unless you have an animal. Great for keeping dogs out too.
- Outlet covers – Yes, but maybe not right away
- Corner guards– see above…
- Edge guards – see above
- Smoke & carbon monoxide alarm – YES RIGHT AWAY!!!!!!
- Cradle, bassinet or portable crib – Yes, very worth the money!
- Bedding sets– Yes, this is something personal. We got a Quilt with our son’s name embroidered on it. Great item to give to him when he gets older.
- Cradle, bassinet or portable crib sheets (Qty: 2-3) – Eh… up to you but most have plastic or washable bottoms.. should be ok.
- Cradle, bassinet or portable crib toys – DON”T PUT TOYS IN WHERE YOUR BABY SLEEPS!!
- Crib – Yes, but you can get away with a bassinet or pack and play for a few months.
- Crib toys – Don’t put toys in your child’s bed. Only 2 cents would be something that STRAPS to the side of the crib or a mobile.
- Changing table– We used our bed. I don’t think it’s necessary.
- Armoire/chifforobe– Do you not have a closet?
- Dresser/chest– We had one from my childhood that was solid wood… I recommend getting something though to help with closet organization.
- Drawer linens– Eh… no
- Hutch 6 Glider or upholstered rocker – I got a nice lazyboy.
- Ottoman– If you get a glider… sure! But again, I got a lazyboy that matched our son’s room.
- Blanket chest– I know this sounds odd, but yes. Not a chest, but rather a tub or large holder. We got a large holder from Pottery Barn Kids and got the word “Blankets” embroidered on it. We put all the loose blankets or sheets in there.
- Crib mattress – splurge on this guys… it will take your child through a toddler bed too and you know what it’s like to have a horrible mattress.
- Crib mattress pads (Qty: 3) – We got one. It’s something extra to wash if your child gets sick but it adds a little extra softness to it.
- Vinyl mattress cover– get a mattress with a plastic cover on it. Worth it.
- Cradle, bassinet or portable crib mattress– Um… most good ones come with it.
- Crib bedding set – Yes… end of story.
- Fitted crib sheets (Qty: 4-6) – We have 3… you don’t need 6.
- Blankets (Qty: 4-6) – You’ll get a million of them.. trust me… but you only need a few
- Receiving blankets (Qty: 4-6) – You only need a few guys…
- Waterproof pads (Qty: 4-6) – For what? No… get a good mattress.
- Sheet savers (Qty: 4-6) – No, waste of money
- Changing table covers (Qty: 2-4) – We used our bed…
- Changing table pads – we used our bed…
- Sleep positioner– Don’t co-sleep … or most people say. We used a pack and play in our room.
- Wall hanging – Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Switchplate cover – Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Crib mobile– Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Lamp – Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Wall border – Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Window treatments– Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Diaper stacker – Sooooo not needed. We got a plastic bin that we could take from room to room. Much better.
- Rug – Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Hamper– Very subjective… shop throughout your pregnancy and get what you want.
- Waste basket– We usually just threw stuff out in the bathrooms or kitchen.
- Storage solutions – Start collecting the stuff for your baby and then shop for storage.. You may find one thing works and another doesn’t.
- Organizers – Yes, get a good closet organizer and put it up early so as you get stuff… you can put it away. We store diapers in the top shelf and have double hanging shelves from there. Works great.
- Shelves– See above
- Baskets/storage bins (Qty: 2-4) – Very selective. Don’t register for these items.. go to a home depot or lowes and get what you need once you figure out how much you get.
- Bibs (Qty: 8-12) – Get plenty
- Burp cloths – Yes, very much needed
- Washcloths (Qty: 12) – We bought disposable or used our own. Waste of money for baby washclothes
- Towels (Qty: 4) – get one or 2 really cute ones for your child… J
- Bodysuits (Qty: 9-12) – get a bunch of onesies… worth it but get quality ones… not cheap thin ones.
- Gowns (Qty: 4-6) – for sleeping, these are great but again, invest or ask for name brand… you’ll use them for multiple children.
- Layette sets– Eh… not sold on these.
- Bedding sets – think about the theme of the room and register from there. You don’t need a sham cover by the way!
- Blankets (Qty: 4-6) – You’ll get plenty from people.
- Sheets (Qty: 4-6) – We only bought 3… unless you don’t do your laundry a lot…
On November 15, 2010, the Yakima Herald published a story about children finding a forever home through adoption. (Full Story) I was quiet interested in the story because:
- I’m personally adopted and have a very interesting adoption story (or at least I think so!)
- My husband and I have thought since day 1 that we would like to adopt a child one day.
Did you know that November 20, 2010 is National Adoption Day? (Source: http://www.nationaladoptionday.org)
Well, here we are “celebrating” National Adoption Day during National Adoption Month (November). As I mentioned before, I am adopted. From the beginning of my memory, I was always told I was adopted… ”Chosen” as my mother fondly puts it. She and my father chose to have me in their lives, which is an amazing gift. Choosing to bring a child into your life and spend the next lifetime raising them is a HUGE responsibility because you decide to give them all the financial, physical, and emotional support you can. While this side of the adoption story is usually the only one shown, there is another side to the story that most forget about.
The birth family is and always will be part of that child’s life regardless of your decision to allow them to know who the child is growing up. Genetically, the child has a tie to the two people that gave them life and in many cases, something more than genetics.
In 5th grade, I found myself asking more and more questions about who gave birth to me and who I was before my parents brought me into their lives. We had a class project that really struck a nerve. We were asked to go home and find out what our family’s ethnic heritage was. The next day, when it was my turn to announce what I had learned, I proudly stated I was Czech on one side and a veritable mutt on the other. Then, it happened. You know that mean child in every class… she piped up very loudly and said that I wasn’t Czech because I was adopted… Adopted children don’t know what they are because they weren’t wanted. (Kids can be super mean and I remember running out of the room crying).
I started to pursue my birth family at that point because I wanted to know where I came from, was I really not wanted, was I a princess in waiting, did I have a bunch of brothers and sisters waiting for me to find them? To say the least, my parents (the ones who adopted me) were a bit unhappy about my venture to learn about my history and it was difficult for me to separate my feelings of curiosity from fear of being abandoned.
I eventually wrote enough letters to the hospital where I was born and they forwarded a letter to my birth mother. I learned I had a half sister and a niece. I learned that certain medical conditions run through their family and I need to be aware of that as I get older. I also learned I was English, Irish, and some native american on my birth father’s side. A few years later (and a LONG blog post for another time) and learned about his side of my tree. After finding all of this out, I felt complete. Learning these facts were not anything my parents could offer me… but something I needed to discover by myself. My birth mother gave me up because she thought she couldn’t give me a good enough life and afford me and my older sister. She was selfless in this effort and really put another human first before herself. I commend her for this action and I commend my parents for adopting me into their family as their own.
Adoption is such a beautiful thing ONLY when lines of communication are open. Always remembering that the best interest of the child is key. Being jealous or keeping the child from exploring their history is a crime in my book. Not allowing the child to know their history is robbing them of a piece of themselves.
I’ve met so many other adopted individuals and some say they know who their birth family is, some say they wish they did and others could care less… but you should leave it up to the child to make this decision. People who are not adopted can’t comprehend what it is like to look at someone and say… ”I have her nose. I have his toes. I have her hair.” Additionally, when or if an adopted individual has biological children, there is an amazing connection that is very hard to describe when you are finally blood related to someone.
So many things to consider when thinking about adoption… but don’t forget that the first concern should always be the well being of the child. Don’t rob the child of knowing where they come from… even if it wasn’t a fairy tale. Give them the opportunity to grow in the knowledge that you are not threatened by them learning their past.
Biological parents gave the child life… adopted parents gave the child the opportunity to grow up and have a life. No matter what – it’s a partnership for the child. What are the other options? I may not have been here if my birth mother decided not to even give me a chance.
Thank you to both my birth mother and my adopted parents… I am who I am today because you all loved me.
Happy National Adoption Day everyone.