Baby Registry

Raising a baby apparently takes a lot of stuff. {At least that is what retailers try to lead new moms to believe.}  As a soon-to-be new mom, I am bombarded with ads for diaper cream, breast pads, sleeps, swaddlers, teething remedies – the list goes on and on. And that is just from the retailers. Nevermind the unsolicited advice I get from complete strangers. Sometimes I feel like if we don’t have the highest end of everything, our kid is going to fall behind the others, flunk out of preschool and be destined to live in my basement the rest of his life. It’s a lot of pressure.

The other day I was freaking out because the rocker/glider I had my eye on was out of stock. This was my first irrational pregnancy meltdown. It didn’t actually turn into a full-fledge meltdown, but I was thoroughly upset by it.   People kept telling me, “You don’t need it right away”, “All the baby really needs is a roof and diapers”, etc. etc. While that is all well and good, and a rational person (not full of pregnancy hormones) probably agrees. However, crazy-seven-months-pregnant-first-time-mom-zilla begs to differ.

It did get me thinking about our registry and what our baby boy ACTUALLY needs when he gets here. I put our registry together around week 22. I have a very dear friend that I have known since our freshmen year of high school who I bribed with lunch to help me with my registry. {I think she probably would have accompanied me even if I didn’t buy her lunch, but I wanted to ensure her participation.} This friend also happens to have an adorable two and a half year old and suffers from the same shopping addition I do. She and I tend to be each other’s voice of reason when the other is on the ledge. {At least she is for me; I don’t think she is on the edge as much as I am.}

Registry PictureThis would probably be my biggest piece of advice to anyone putting together a baby registry – take an experienced friend/family member with you! Between the nipple pads, pump accessories, and over-priced shiny toys, it’s very overwhelming for an emotional pregnant woman. My friend met me at Target early (for me) one Sunday morning, we walked through the aisles, she pointed, I zapped it with my fancy registering gun and we were done in 30 minutes. We repeated this process down the street at Babies R Us and were sitting down the lunch by 11:30. As we walked through the store, there were a lot of things I questioned her on – do I need this? How many of these do I need? But for the most part, I trusted her and listened to her advice. Having an experienced mama with me really helped me focus my list.

Side note: You may wonder where my dear husband was during all the registering. He was at home working on our house. We learned very early on in our relationship/marriage that anything shopping-related is best left up to me. His attention span while shopping is that of a fly which really gets under my professional-shopping skin as I sit there and analyze the price vs. quality vs. quantity of everything that goes into my cart/on the registry. When I got home, I did go through the whole registry with him and asked his opinions on a few things. His response was “whatever you want.”

I feel like our registry has a good mix of wants and needs. Of course there are the big things – car seat, pack-n-play, baby monitor, etc. Then the essentials: nursing pads, diaper cream, car-charger for the breast pump, bottles, plain white onesies, etc. Finally, the things that would be nice to have, such as the bumbo, boppy, squeeze pouches for baby food, teethers, etc.  My second piece of advice to expectant mamas is to focus your list and try to have a good mix of the above three categories. When I attend a baby shower, my mind immediately wants to buy the new mama the shiny, over-priced toy. But then I take a look at her list and realize something from the need/essentials list will probably get more use and help the new family out more than the toy.

So, to all of you experienced mamas, what did you put on your registry? On the same note, what are some must-have baby items that you would suggest new mamas consider adding?

Katie Ripke
Katie is a mama of two rambunctious, sweet, cuddly and highly energetic boys. Growing up in Mount Vernon, Iowa, she briefly left the area to attend college at the University of Northern Iowa, had a brief stint living in Chicago before settling down in Lisbon with her husband Bryan. Katie has been in the marketing field for over 10 years and is currently a marketing manager for an area health care organization. When she is not balancing life as a working mom, Katie enjoys binging on Netflix/Hulu, learning about all things boy and squeezing in a workout from time to time. Her current addictions include coffee, LaCroix, and cookies.


  1. From an *old* mom and *new* Grandma – please, keep it simple. Babies used to sleep in dresser drawers, when the cribs/bed were full of other children. Those babies became members of the “greatest generation” and not only survived, but thrived, and protected and defended our great country. I personally came from a “poor” family – I just didn’t know it – because I had clean clothes, good food, and a loving family. I was the only one of my family to have a “new” bed (it came from a used furniture store, but it was from a store and not a hand-me-down!). I slept in my crib prior to getting the bed – the sides got removed & and by magic, it was no longer a crib – it was a BED! The VERY most important things that parents can provide for their children is Love & Consistency! Stuff is just that – it’s stuff…. Good luck with the new baby and May God Bless Your Family with a Happy Home and Good Health!

  2. i think it’s different for everybody! Some things I assumed were essentials like nursing pads and receiving blankets ended up going unused. Whereas, for me, the Boppy was an essential for breastfeeding! It’s hard to know how to plan perfectly.


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