I’ve walked into so many houses with “baby supplies” encapsulating the entire first floor of the home. When preparing for our baby, I wanted to adhere to a minimalist baby mindset. One of the most overwhelming things during my pregnancy was walking into Buy Buy Baby with the goal to create a registry. There is a booklet that walks you through every baby category from eating, diapering, medicines, sleeping, traveling, playing, and more. That booklet guides you to register for bibs, but there are ten different types of bibs! Which one should you select? Well, each mom will have a different answer there. The main lesson is only you will know what ends up working best for your baby.
Everything is overwhelming when creating a baby registry. This blog will walk you through preparing for a minimalist baby registry experience. Even if you are not planning to have a baby shower, I still recommend creating a registry. I did not have a formal baby shower but did use our registry as a way to track items I still needed.
Why create a registry?
- You get a free gift for creating your registry.
- I created an Amazon registry and one with Buy Buy Baby. I then just reguarly checked each registry and updated them based on any purchases.
- Extra coupons start coming your way.
- If anyone did want to get something for you, they’ll hunt down your list. Why not share what you need?
Why focus on a Minimalist Baby Registry?
- Minimizes clutter.
- Allows you to get comfortable and confident taking care of baby without bells and whistles.
- Focuses dollars on safety
Now, each baby will gravitate to different things, perhaps one baby loves laying in a rocker while another baby just wants to be held. This minimalist baby registry should be looked at for the basics; what are the necessities for my baby to be comfortable and safe. As you and your baby grow and find a routine, you will most definitely add baby supplies, however, my guidance is to hold off initially.
The Minimalist Baby Registry
The minimalist baby mindset still comes with some significant costs. If you are looking to save on some of the necessities, check out my post “Buying new versus Used. What does your baby really need“.
Diving into each category for a Minimalist Baby Registry
This includes a carrier, base, and stroller. Travel systems range in price but are well worth the investment. Stalk these travel systems, wait for sales, coupons, and look for floor models that are no longer being stocked. If you are patient, you can significantly save. All the carriers on the market are safe, or they wouldn’t be sold in reputable stores. Focus on needs for your daily life.
Items to consider:
- Size – How easily will this fit in your car?
- Weight – Style is nice, but make sure you can easily lift the carrier and stroller.
- Amenities – How will you use the stroller? Look at wheels based on the terrain you typically encounter.
- Growth – How does the travel system transition as your child grows? Will the travel system accomodate more than one child?
This includes wipes, diapers (cloth or disposable), diaper bag, diaper creams. You might think, “I don’t want to stock up on diapers until I know which my baby likes.” Momma or Dad, you will go through so many diapers and fast! Register for size 1 and size 2 diapers. Depending on the size of your baby, you may quickly move out of newborn diapers. The hospital will most likely send you home with newborn diapers and you may only need one package before you move to size 1, which happens around 8 pounds.
- I love Huggies, due to the high absorbency and blow out flap on the back of the diaper. Pampers also worked well for us for absorbency. The only diapers that did not work for us at all were the Target brand. Our daughter needed a higher level of absorbency.
- You will go through roughly 8 diapers a day. I recommend registering for two large boxes of size 1 and size 2 diapers. Feel free to mix up the brands, so you can determine which brand works best for your baby.
- I have diaper rash cream, but have not used it. Only register for one tube, in case you are in my situation and are four months in without a rash.
Clothing and Swaddles:
You will find yourself doing a lot of laundry with a baby. I always like our daughter to have clean bibs, burb cloths, swaddles, and clothes. Budget the time to do small loads of laundry every three days. I use All baby detergent and just wash my husband and my clothes along with our daughters. All is more cost-effective than draft and works well for us. I use the liquid for home and have the pods for travel.
- Swaddles – Register for a minimum of two swaddles. Try to get different brands in case your baby prefers one over the other.
- Clothes – As a newborn, our baby was dressed in onsies with leggings more of the time. Purchase a going home outfit and place in your hospital bag (newborn and 0-3 month sizes). This might sound odd but beyond the going home outfit, hold off registering for clothing. People love buying baby clothes and you will most likely end up getting a lot of baby clothes. If you are two weeks out from your due date and baby clothes haven’t started to arrive, pick up five newborn outfits and five 0-3 month outfits.
These are items for the nursery. If you are planning on the baby sleeping in your room initially, some of these items might move to your room and then back to the nursery once baby transitions to their own room.
- Crib with sheets – Get at least two sheets. Your baby will sleep in the crib with only a fitted sheet, no additional blankets.
- Changing table and pad – I have a dresser changing table combo. It works great! I did spend money on changing pad covers, but after two months stopped using them. I just clean the changing pad with baby safe cleaner regularly.
- Sound machine – This was essential for us. We purchased a plug in basic sound machine, however, these range in capability and price.
- Baby monitor – I recommend a baby monitor where you can hear and see baby. Our monitor has two cameras and then a hand held monitor and phone app. The battery life on our hand held monitor is horrible (60 minutes max), so I will not recommend our brand. I do encourage you to explore monitors with the visual display.
This category includes bottles, nipples, bibs, burp cloths, breast pump, pump supplies, and milk storage. Eating items for a minimalist baby registry differ based on your desired feeding method. Remember, fed is best. I had a desire to exclusively breastfeed, however, that vision did not fully actualize due to a variety of uncontrollable items. Although you may have a strong desire, either way, I urge you to plan your minimalist registry with both aspects in mind.
If you end up exclusively breastfeeding, you may also pump, and therefore bottles and nipples will still be useful.
- Bottles – New mom gifts bags from stores typically include a bottle or two. Through free store gifts, I ended up with six, four ounce bottles. This allowed me to figure out which nipples and bottles worked best for our baby and me! I recommend keeping these off your registry until you know your babies preference. If getting one package makes you more comfortable, I recommend Avent natural with nipple size 0 for a newborn.
- Nipples – There are various flow speed and nipple shapes. Nipples will be included with the free bottles you receive. Do not register for nipples until you experiment with the free bottles and nipples.
- Burp cloths and bibs – If you give bottles, formula or breastmilk bottles, you will want bibs. I love greensprout bibs with the milk catcher collar. I recommend registering for a minimum of 12 bibs and 12 burp cloths.
- Formula – Do not register for formula. Sign up for samples from Enfamil and Similac. Our daughter likes the Kirkland brand formula from Costco. The Kirkland formula runs about $18 per 42 ounces, however, make sure to keep an eye out for deals. Several times a year you can purchase formula for ~$3.00-$4.00 the retail price.
Talk to your Pediatrician about Pacifiers if you have questions on when and if to use them. Our Pediatrician is supportive of their use and we started using them when our daughter was about a week old. Pacifiers are something you should buy new and there are so many varieties. Register for a variety of 2-pack pacifier styles and types. I recommend registering for two separate styles. Take note that pacifiers are designed for different age groups. Our daughter will take any pacifier from Avent, Medela, Nuk, and Talbots.
Pack ‘n’ Play:
Before you register for a Pack ‘n’ Play determine your purpose. We purchased a Pack ‘n’ Play with a bassinet and changing table attachment. In lieu of a stand-alone bassinet, we decided to use the bassinet within the Pack ‘n’ Play to avoid another piece of furniture in the house. This system worked well for us and if we have another child I will use the same set-up. The Pack ‘n’ Play will also be used in the future to create a safe area for her to sleep when we are at a friend’s or relative’s house. Whether you plan on using your Pack ‘n’ Play as a bassinet or not, I recommend this as a registry item. If you are not using as a bassinet, you will want to register for a traditional bassinet.
Talk to your Pediatrician about best practices for babies when sleeping.
Swing versus Rocker
There will be times that you need to put your baby down. Many times this will happen when you are in your main living area, perhaps cooking or cleaning. I recommend registering for either a baby rocker (lounger) or swing. This is a safe place to lay baby, although, you should always be watching them even when in the lounger or swing. When exploring these items, make sure you can buckle in your baby. As your baby continues to grow, the wiggles start to appear and you will be grateful for those buckles.