Baby Essentials: What do I need? Help!

 At my last appointment my doctor asked me who my pediatrician was and I was like, ummm I don't have one yet and she told me I need to find one ASAP because they can have a 6 month waiting list for a new baby- WHAT?!!?! Low and behond she then proceeded to tell me that furniture can take 4-6 months to get delivered, the hospital classes and tours are ususally booked months in advance, etc, etc, etc.  I thought I had a lot of time but apparently I'm wrong.  Needless to say I am officially freaked out! 
I've started browsing Baby's R Us,  Target, and google searching and I have a rough list of baby items that I believe we'll need but to be honest I feel so lost.  I've been back through some other bloggers lists of must have but I swear everyone has something different on their list. 

So I'm asking for your help- Is there a general list somewhere of everything you need to keep a baby alive?  What did you find were essential baby/new mom items that you could not live without?    What was a complete waste of money or overrated?   Where do I find all these consumer safety ratings everyone talks about?  What reviews should I trust- the ones I see on Amazon or Baby's R Us or am I looking for some official safety review?   What about recalls?  What brands were your favorites? 

Any advice you all can offer is much appreciated!  Thanks!


  1. I so wish I could help you! lol I'd be freaking out too. Just stay calm and research! :) Are there any books out there that could help??


  2. I'm gonna be no help girl. Sorry!!! But have fun shopping!

  3. I'm sorry your doctor freaked you out. You'll be fine! It was not my experience that pediatrician's had wait lists but I guess that might vary from city to city. My OB recommended having one selected by about 30 weeks, just in case you end up in labor early. Some pediatricans go to the hospitals to visit the babies when they're born, some peds use hospitalists, which are basically pediatricians who work in the hospital. So it's important to have a peditrician chosen so you know who will see the baby in the hospital and who to take them to shortly after you're discharged.

    Furniture can take a while but there are also many options that can be picked up in store or delivered quickly. I ordered a crib and waited 20 weeks for it to arrive. 3 weeks before my due date it was VERY late and still hadn't arrived so I ordered a crib from Pottery Barn and within a week it was in my house. Wish I'd just done that from the beginning!

    As for what you NEED to keep a baby alive, very little. Some blankets, a few sleepers/onesies/gowns, diapers & wipes, and a place for baby to sleep. If you breastfeed that's it, if not, add in some formula and bottles. Everything else is just for the sake of convenience. I wrote a post about what we purchased and liked but I really feel like so much of it just a preference.

    Here's the post I wrote, with what we liked and found helpful. http://forthelove-mb.blogspot.com/2012/03/another-baby-gear-post.html

    If you have any questions, feel free to send them my way! And don't worry - you'll be great!

  4. I checked Amazon when buying stuff for their reviews but there aren't any items out there that get 100% approval, someone will always not like something.

    The main things you need-
    -some onesies/sleepers (I recommend the ones with zippers and not snaps because trying to
    snap a sleeper in the middle of the night is a pain)
    -place for baby to sleep- crib, bassinet or pak n play (we did bassinet for 8 weeks then the crib)
    -bottles (if you plan to bottle feed)
    -a swing (most babies love to sleep in swings)
    -pacifiers (if you want to use them)
    -boppy pillow

    We actually didn't find our pediatrician until after our son was born while still in the hospital, my doc told me the opposite of yours, that we didn't need one til he was born and we ended using the same one my sister-in-law takes her kids too. We had no problem getting him in last minute. The only thing that I've seen that can have really long waiting lists are daycares so if you plan to put your kid in daycare that's something to check out sooner than later.

  5. what all my friends did was use another friends registry list, and basically copied it. if you don't have any friends who recently had babies, let me know and i can give you some names of my friends and you can pull theirs. good luck!!

  6. I second a lot of what Melissa said. You need very little at first and your doctor should not have freaked you out like that. You have PLENTY of time.

    Pediatrician - I asked my OB for a few recommendations, then asked my friends with kids about who they see and whether they'd recommend them. One name kept coming up, so we went with him. No interviewing, no wait list, no nothing. We just put his name on the form as our pediatrician and made an appointment with him (for day #5) after the baby was born. Easy.

    Furniture - every place you order from is different. Yes, some take forever. I was expecting that and then ended up with the furniture at my house 3 days after ordering it and having no place to put it b/c I wasn't expecting it so soon! Most websites are pretty up front about when your stuff will be delivered. Don't stress about this.

    Registry - It's horribly overwhelming. Everyone has a different idea, different likes and every kid is different. You have no clue whether your baby is going to like something or any idea how many of everything you need and what's a waste. Honestly, registering was one of my biggest fears. So, I did my homework online and read up on everything. Then I recruited 2 of my friends with kids and made them go to Babies R Us with me, walk me down every single aisle and give me their opinions on things (strollers, high chairs, pack and plays, bedding, toys, bottles, breast pumps, etc.). The both had 2 kids each and it was great getting their feedback on what worked for them, what they learned, what they wish they had, what's changed, what was a waste of money, etc. I highly recommend you do this. I know you'd probably rather go with your husband, but husbands are totally helpless and will drive you nuts with their indecision. Take a girlfriend (mom) instead. Maybe two, or three.

    Also, I think this site is good for baby reviews and stuff. http://thewisebaby.com/

  7. Don't worry it will be fine! Shame on your Doc for freaking you out!!
    Here is my list:

    1. good car seat/stroller situation-I have a graco 'system'(rear facing infant car seat that attaches to stroller) that I love! also if you have cold winters get a warm car seat cover (if baby will still be in the infant car seat in the winter of course. my youngest is seven months old and growing out of his but most will use it until about 9 months...my kid is huge!)

    2. diapers (and wipes)! disposable/cloth?!? as far as disposable, most of my friends agree that pampers work better for boys and huggies for girls, weird i know but it seems to be true. i, however use luvs and LUV them ;)

    3. burb cloths and bibs...whether you breast or bottle feed you'll need some

    4. crib...duh ;)

    5. my boys LOVED their swing and bouncy seat! total life saver if you are home with baby and ever want to shower again. we got a new swing last summer when we had our youngest and the model we got plugs into an outlet instead of using batteries-this was REALLY important for us as our kids have always been heavy and use the swing a lot. we would buy batteries in bulk at sams club/costco and go through them in two weeks...$$$$!!

    6. cotton receiving blankets, my boys all liked to be swaddled and cotton didn't make them sweaty/overheat.

    7. if you are planning on nursing invest in a good nursing cover and a boppy pillow, bottles if not.

    8.some good cotton sleepers(with zippers like shannon said), when my baby's are little it's all they wear during our cold winters in MT. Gap, Hannah Anderson and Carters are my favs

    As far as things that are a waste of money:
    1.wipe warmers-why make your baby used to warm wipes? I mean what do you do when you're not at home? wipes are cold, they get over it!

    2.bassinet-if you have the room to scoot it up to your bed, get a pack and play instead-you will use it forever! otherwise co-sleepers are great and small!

    3.whatever you do don't buy a changing table! buy a changing pad cover and put it on top of a dresser in baby's room, you don't need a dresser and a changing table.

    Check with your friends about what pediatrician they use- I asked my 'friends' on Facebook and it was so helpful! Try to enjoy your pregnancy, it will be over before you know it and it's so easy to be stressed the whole time, especially with your first. If you don't have the book What to Expect When You're Expecting get it, used mine ALL THE TIME! They have a great section about what you'll need for the baby and what to take to the hospital for labor/delivery too. Oh and they also have What To Expect The First Year! Hope this helps, you'll be great!!

  8. Oh and like Shannon said previously: if you are going to be putting your child in daycare start looking now! We've all heard the horror stories (we just had another incident at a daycare in my city this week) you can NEVER be too careful about who is watching your child.

  9. This list was SUPER helpful in terms of what you need/want for your registry - http://www.lucieslist.com/

    In terms of daycare - if your city has a high rate of working mothers, I'd get on it soon. We had Sadie in April, and she was pretty much signed up for daycare in March (looking for her to start in Sept). You just want to make sure they have a spot available, since there needs to be 1 teacher per 4 infants in a room (at least by me)

    Pediatrician I'd do some research just in case they aren't taking new patients. Group practices tend to take on new patients more, since they have a lot of doctors they can rotate through.

    But don't worry - its like planning a wedding. You will plan and plan and plan and plan, and then all of a sudden it'll all be done with months to kill with nothing to do! I couldn't make Sadie's nursery until AFTER she was born since we moved - that SUCKED.

  10. I agree with a lot if the previous commenter. You really don't need as much as you think you do. That's true when the baby gets older too.

    Clothes wise you will be doing laundry more so you don't need a million baby outfits. I found that zippered sleepers are much easier especially for night time, your half asleep and don't want to find 10 buttons. Muslin blankets for swaddling are the best investment. Aden and Anis are my favorite for blankets and bibs/burp cloths. Worth every penny. A play mat for us was huge and my son didn't like the swing so even even if this baby loved something you baby may hate it. It's trial and error. I tried to borrow things from friends and family if I could to try it out and if Brayden liked it I would buy it.

  11. i've got lots of advice once you have the baby, like any problems or help you'll need. and i've never had kids, oddly enough. congrats to you!

  12. I don't have any advice for you... but I am going to follow you to take yours! I just read your pregnancy story and it sounds like once you stopped trying it happened - which is what everyone tells me to do!

  13. Everything Aden and Anais is fantastic and breathable and SAFE! Boppy pillows and a small swing and bouncer are key. Do you have a Buy Buy Baby near you? They are the BEST!


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