the real baby registry necessities, a full list of what you need for baby
Babies,  Birth and Postpartum,  Motherhood,  Pregnancy


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I think almost every pregnant mama is at least a little caught off guard at the sheer amount of STUFF that comes along with having a baby, and figuring out what essentials to put on their baby registry… wondering what are the actual baby registry necessities?

Fortunately for those of us who care about not blowing a bunch of money on stupid crap, a ton of it is totally unnecessary!

Much of it will be different for every family in different situations, living in different areas, and having different priorities and activities.

So breathe easy, this list will cover ALL of the major purchases you need to think about making. The absolute must have baby registry necessities, with recommendations of highly rated, reputable brands that you can look at for these items.


Of course you will get some frivolous baby items. But this will get the bulk of the most essential things out of the way so you can then go and pick out all of the more “fun”stuff…

You know, the frou frou infant bedding sets (that you can’t actually use until baby is bigger), stuffed animals, themed decor and whatnot.

I will give you some information on these essential baby items for your registry, and below that I will also note which ones I chose for my babies and why, with some other recommendations for different scenarios.

Also, every link in this article will open in a new window… So if you’re in doubt, open the different options so that you can compare them easier.

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click a link and then choose to make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. You can read my full disclosure here. Thank you for your support and understanding!


This is first and most important. No matter where you live, you have to have some essential items for transporting baby from point A to point B.

This article WAS nearly 17,000 words and was WAY too long. So I made this section on the best strollers, best car seats, best travel systems, into it’s own post, which you can READ HERE! (It will open in a new window so that you can easily come back and finish this one)

It goes over pros and cons, which strollers are compatible with which infant seats (which is especially important for jogging strollers!), convertible car seats, and lots more.

BUT I will go over some of the cliff notes here, just be sure you check out the full article which is much more in depth.


Before you ask me… “Wait! Why can’t I use a converitble car seat that will work from when they’re a newborn until they’re 25?”

(no, those don’t exist)…

But in all seriousness, you want an INFANT CARRIER because you can take baby in and out of the car, already in their seat, which is invaluable lots of reasons. So here are my favorites!

Infant Car Seat Recommendations

All of these top 3 seats fit babies between 4 and 35 lbs height permitting, and have 4.8 star review ratings on Amazon.

They have an impressive list of safety features, and are compatible with various travel systems (I’ll list my favorite travel systems next).

1. Graco SnugRide SnugLock 35 LX Infant Car Seat

2. Britax B-Safe 35 Infant Car Seat

3. Chicco KeyFit Infant Car Seat

Before registering for any of these, keep reading to see the best Travel Systems! This will ensure compatibility so you won’t have to worry about returns.

And like I said before, if you want the full deals on these car seats and strollers, go to my full post here.



First, consider some things:

  • Will I need to travel with this often? (if so, you might want a separate one for that purpose)
  • Do I live on or near dirt roads, or just crappy roads with lots of potholes?
  • Am I likely to go jogging (even occasionally)?
  • Do I want my infant carrier to attach to the stroller easily? (YES, YOU DO. TRUST ME.)
  • How big is your (smallest) vehicle? Will the stroller fit in the trunk?
  • If you ride public transit, can your stroller fold up small enough?
  • NICE strollers can be heavier (not just jogging strollers), so getting it in and out of vehicles easily, vs. luxury options should be considered.
  • If you are having twins, then the game changes on what your stroller options are. Here’s the double jogging stroller I use.

I do NOT recommend being a penny pincher on this item, especially if you like to jog once in a while (or a lot).

Infant Car Seat / Stroller Compatibility

Since there are MANY different types of stroller and car seat, the MOST convenient way to choose a stroller is to match the brand of infant seat.

There are various travel systems (keep reading), which allow you to buy the infant seat, base and stroller all together, usually saving quite a bit of money.

AND this way, you know for sure that they are compatible.

If you’re dead set on two separate brands, you’ll have to do some research on compatibility, or check out my recommendations.

Some (not all) stroller brands sell stroller adapters to allow you to safely attach a different type of carrier to the top, or add a snack tray for baby. If you end up choosing the BOB Pro Jogging Stroller, they have a TON of adapters available on Amazon.


1. My Favorite – The BOB Revolution PRO Jogging Stroller Bundle

for your baby registry necessities list

BOB is well known as the top brand for serious joggers, and now that I have 2 kids, I currently use the Bob Duallie Double Stroller (which is like this but for 2), and I LOVE it even more than my Graco, especially for running.

SO I put this one as my #1 choice, because I do think it’s better for runners and worth the price point. I think if I had my first child now, this is what I would purchase for myself.


They even have a travel system now! (they didn’t have that when I had my babies).

2. The Runner-Up – The Thule Urban Glide 2 Jogging Stroller

3. My Go-To – The Graco FastAction Fold Jogging Stroller

This is the stroller I’ve used for both of my kids, and I LOVE it. Graco is one of the only brands that features JOGGING stroller travel systems, other than the BOB/Britax system.

Here is the Graco Travel System, which comes with the infant car seat, 1 car seat base and the jogging stroller. This saves you around $100 to buy or register for them together.

Don’t forget to set up your Amazon Baby Registry now if you haven’t yet, so you can start adding things to your baby shower registry!


These all get great reviews, and come separately or in a travel system.

1. Most Versatile – Evenflo Pivot Xpand, Single-to-Double Convertible Baby Stroller with Compact Folding design

Ok so this one really impressed me. It has up to 22 (!!!) different configurations. It comes as a travel system, OR you can get the stroller alone here, but you won’t have as much versatility without the matching infant seat.

2. Best Mid-Priced Travel System – Graco Modes Element LX Travel System

3. Best Stroller for Travel (6 months and up) – Pockit Lightweight Stroller

4. Best Stroller for travel (newborn to 12 months) – Graco SnugRider Elite Car Seat Carrier

5. Best Low Budget Option – Kolcraft Cloud Plus Lightweight Easy Fold Compact Travel Stroller

Get full details on all of these strollers here!


You don’t HAVE to register for these right away, HOWEVER, most families will need more than one (if they drive separate vehicles), and you won’t have people buying you as much stuff later, so I say put it on there.

Whatever you choose, pay special attention to the weight and height limits on both the infant seat and the convertible seat so that there are no gaps in between.

And be sure to get ones that are good for rear facing AND forward facing. It is recommended for optimum safety to keep the seat rear facing as long as possible, up to age 3-4.

1. Best Compact Convertible Car Seat – Graco SlimFit 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat

Best Compact Convertible Car Seat - Graco SlimFit 3 in 1 Convertible Car Seat

This is number 1 because it’s the one I chose, for the simple fact that I have a stupid little car which I loved before having kids, and not so much now that I need to fit 2 car seats in the back seat.

It has great reviews and safety features, and it FITS IN MY LITTLE CAR.

Always take measurements into account before buying a car seat. Don’t assume that the one you like the best will fit.

2. Best Overall Convertible Car Seat – Britax One4Life ClickTight All-in-One Car Seat

3. Best Mid Price Convertible Car Seat – Graco 4Ever DLX 4 in 1 Car Seat


There are some things to consider before registering:

  • How much space do you have for a crib, bassinet, pack n’ play, or other sleeping apparatus. YES, you need to actually measure.
  • Are you planning to safely co-sleep?
  • Do you have a separate nursery, or will the baby’s bed be in your room?
  • Even if you don’t PLAN to co-sleep, 70-80% of moms say that they do eventually, even some of the time. Because they get more sleep that way. Just saying.
  • If you don’t co-sleep, it is WAY easier to tend to baby in the middle of the night if you have them sleep in your room by your bed at first.
  • Will your baby be sharing their room with a sibling? If so, you definitely don’t want them in there right away for lots of reasons.

Since the answers to these questions vary so much depending on your views and living arrangements, here’s some options, starting with the biggest necessity for baby sleep (you’ll be surprised what it is).


Why is this first, BEFORE a crib?

Because people go places with baby.

Or people might think they want baby in the crib in the nursery, and once baby has arrived, you completely change your mind about it (trust me, this will happen a lot).

Personally, I had a pack n’ play next to my bed with both of my sons, and I used the crap out of it. I actually have two of these, and I do USE BOTH.

It would be a SUPER pain to always fold up the one I had by my bed to take to the babysitter’s every day. Or go to Nana’s house. Or whatever.

At around 6 months, I transitioned my second son into the crib in the shared room with his older brother.

But it wasn’t done…

  • We use it for travel.
  • For naps at the babysitter’s house.
  • To put baby down in otherwise unsafe spaces.
  • For the toddler who wasn’t quite ready for his big boy bed.
  • We use it to put the three year old into when he becomes untrustworthy, throwing things around in his room at night and otherwise not sleeping.
  • For a long time as a changing table on the main floor of our house – to keep the toddler out of the baby stuff, while not having to climb the stairs for frequent diaper changes.

Depending on the model, they also come with a variety of handy attachments, like bassinets and easily wiped changing areas.

AND they all fold up easily (just read the instructions to avoid frustration).

Not everybody will use it for all of those things, but it has been the most versatile, long-term piece of baby equipment I’ve ever had, except maaaybe my letter boards, which are not what I would consider essential.

BUT I have used them countless of times including in every weekly baby photo for my second son’s first year.

1. Most Versatile – Graco Pack ‘n Play Snuggle Seat Playard

Most Versatile - Graco Pack ‘n Play Snuggle Seat Playard

Ok, this one is really cool. It has a special stand for the bassinet (great if you have limited room next to your bed), or you can attach it to the actual pack n’ play.

I would have LOVED the stand and bassinet combo, because I did a lot of travelling to my parents’ place in Canada while my babies were tiny. It’s a super nice option that takes up less space.

It also has a rounded, ROCKABLE bottom… Mine did not do that!


  • Graco pretty much invented (or at least perfected) the playard… so it is a trusted brand.
  • The baby bassinet is rockable (in case you didn’t get that already)!
  • It comes with a folding stand for the bassinet to attach to.
  • A changing table attachment is included.
  • Three baskets for baby supplies are included that can attach to the side of the pack n’ play.
  • Most versatile option available for sure.


  • It’s $300 at the time I’m writing this. There are cheaper ones out there.
  • There is a harness in the bassinet, which some purchasers didn’t like for nighttime swaddling. Lots of others loved it though so you’ll have to decide for yourself.

2. Graco Pack ‘n Play Reversible Napper & Changer Playard LX

for your baby registry necessities list

This is the exact pack n’ play I use.


  • It’s affordable ($139 at the time I’m writing this).
  • Reversible napper which flips over with a secure one hand mechanism to turn into a water resistant changing table on the other side.
  • Lots of space next to that where you can put diaper caddies, organizers or other supplies
  • Attachable hanging stars for baby to reach for and look at.
  • It has lasted almost 4 years and going strong.


  • It doesn’t have all the cute frou frou stuff that some of the others have.

3. Baby Trend Go Lite ELX Nursery Center

for your baby registry necessities list

I chose this one because it has a changer and baby bassinet, but this bassinet has an electronic vibration setting and plays music!

And if you’re not sure about the brand, you don’t have to worry because Baby Trend is owned by Graco, it is their “economy” brand.

So depending what you want in a pack n’ play, these three were the ones that stood out to me.


Here are a few things you’ll probably want to get to go with your playard or pack n; play:

Pack and Play Sheets 3 Pack – This 3 pack of sheets measure 38/24/5 inches each, which is a regular pack n’ play size, like the options listed above. Always check dimensions before ordering.

Hiccapop Pack and Play Mattress Pad [Dual Sided] – This is a 5 star rated mattress pad with a waterproof cover, which is firm for babies and soft for toddlers on the reverse side. I recommend having this if they do a lot of sleeping in the pack n’ play.

Hanging Diaper Caddy/Organizer – This is a nice hanging caddy which has clips for a changing table or pack n’ play, and also has straps for hanging from a regular crib. You could do without it, but it’s certainly good for organizing your nursery.


If you have a nursery, you probably need one of these, unless you’re using your pack n’ play.

The cribs I’ll show you below will all convert into toddler beds for when your baby gets older.

So you’ll get years of use out of it, even if you don’t use it for your newborn.

Here’s a few things to consider:

  • MEASUREMENTS ARE KEY! Many cribs are sized differently.
  • Ensure that you register for the correctly sized crib mattress for your crib. Some brands size things in strange ways so that you have to keep buying their products.
  • Usually you need a separate conversion kit, which adds extra cost. You will want to make sure that you are checking prices INCLUDING any conversion kit that might be needed.
  • Cribs range in price from $100-$3000 or more. I’ve chosen several options here that are a range of prices, all below $500.

1. Highest Rated – Great Price – Delta Children Lancaster 4-in-1 Convertible Baby Crib

for your baby registry necessities list

This crib gets an average of 4.8 stars, which is really high for furniture!

I find that furniture pieces typically have a very hard time getting this close to a perfect 5 stars, so it says a lot.

This crib and it’s accessories all come in white, gray or black, and they also have an option to purchase it with the mattress, which will save you some money AND ensure that it will fit your crib.

NOTE: If you compare prices of the accessories and matching furniture as well as the included mattress and changing pad, this one wins hands down price wise.

2. Best High Quality/Premium Option – Evolur Santa Fe 5-in-1 Convertible Crib

for your baby registry necessities list

This is my favorite on Amazon. This crib comes in 4 different colors, which all look beautiful and very high end.

They also have a full selection of matching furniture, depending on what items you need and want in your nursery.

3. Low Cost Option – DaVinci Kalani 4-in-1 Convertible Crib

for your baby registry necessities list

This is a very affordable option under $200. A highly rated crib that – like the Evolur – comes in lots of different finishes to match any color scheme.

Here are some other matching furniture pieces for this one:

4. Drawer and Changing Table Options – Graco Solano 4-in-1 Convertible Crib with Drawer

Drawer and Changing Table Options - Graco Solano 4-in-1 Convertible Crib with Drawer

Bonus 4th option… I wanted to include this one because:

  • It’s available in three colors.
  • Very reasonably priced at $199.
  • Highly rated.
  • It has a drawer under the bed (who doesn’t want extra storage?).
  • You can also get it with an attached changing table with shelves underneath.

This one doesn’t include the crib mattress, so click here for that.

I won’t go any more in depth on these because there are a LOT of options out there. You can definitely check out more here.


There are a few things that you do really need if you have a full crib setup, so I’ll link to them here.

1. Waterproof Crib Mattress Protector

You will know why, after the first poop blowout, giant vomit or pee leak that happens. I recommend buying at least 2 of these so that 1 can be in the wash while the other one is on the bed (here’s the 2 pack that I bought).

I recommend organic ones because baby will be sleeping with their face right by the mattress. Maybe not right away, but once they can roll over, many babies prefer sleeping on their belly.

2. Crib Sheets

Same as the mattress protector, you’ll want to have at least 2 of these, and preferably organic (it’s worth the extra few dollars). Here’s my favorite set by Cambria, which come in a 2 pack and they have some really nice color/pattern options..


Whether you want a sidecar that connects to your bed, or a traditional bassinet, or maybe you don’t know any want to keep your options open.

Here are some recommendations for highly adjustable, versatile options for your infant bed.


All three of my choices offer similar features, have adjustable heights and have great reviews, so I’m not going to go in depth about the features of each one.

The Cloud Baby (pictured above) is #1 because it has a 4.9 star average review rating.

1. Cloud Baby Bassinet and Bedside Sleeper

2. RONBEI Bedside Sleeper / Baby Bassinet

3. Baby Delight Bassinet & Bedside Sleeper


Here I’ll go into items like the best baby monitors, baby gates, and the wide world of baby-proofing your home.

Hopefully you’re finding this guide helpful. Just remember, take this one item at a time until you can be decisive, bookmark this page and come back to it. Take breaks. You’ve got this!


This was one of the most difficult items for me to research when having my kids.

There are PLENTY of flashy, high tech, phone compatible options out there. I had some very unique reasons that I didn’t want any of that, which I’ll share here because I believe they are very important.

First, I have a big problem with having any wifi, 4G, 5G or Bluetooth signals in my baby’s room (AND in my own).

These signals have been studied and shown to cause harm, and disrupt sleep. For this reason, I don’t care at all about phone compatibility, because I don’t want my phone near my bed unless it’s on airplane mode.

SO, with all that being said, here’s the options I chose.

Second place, which has been a FABULOUS choice of baby monitor for my family and our needs, got beat by a new one which looks better in just about every way, but they are both solid choices.

1. VAVA 720P 5″ HD Display Video Baby Monitor

VAVA 720P 5" HD Display Video Baby Monitor

This one gets even better reviews than the Infant Optics (#2), at 4.8 stars (very hard to do with electronics).

It has better specs in just about every way.

So I can’t say from personal experience, but if I was picking between the two right now, I would probably buy this one.

This baby monitor uses a radio frequency, which is why I feel comfortable recommending it.


  • 5 inch screen.
  • 450-900 foot range.
  • 24 hours battery life (audio only)
  • 10 hours of battery life (screen on)
  • You can connect up to 4 cameras (here’s where you can buy extra cams).
  • It uses radio signal, so NO 4G, 5G, Bluetooth or Wifi signals in baby’s room OR your room.
  • On screen temperature reading of baby’s room.
  • You can buy a wide angle lens here if you need it.
  • It has a digital zoom feature built in.


  • No availability of add-ons and replacement parts. However, you could potentially get these by contacting the company directly.
  • I couldn’t find an optical zoom lens available.

1. Most Tested and Reliable – Infant Optics DRX-8 Baby Monitor

Most Tested and Reliable - Infant Optics DRX-8 Baby Monitor


  • It uses radio signal, like the VAVA.
  • On screen temperature reading of baby’s room.
  • You can press a button to talk to baby through the monitor
  • It comes with an optical zoom lense. I haven’t needed mine, but depending on your room setup, that might be something useful for you.
  • Wide angle lens is available ($11)
  • You can add on up to 4 cameras (buy those here), and view them from the same monitor, or scan through all cameras.
  • Additional monitor screen units are also available for purchase here.
  • Rechargeable battery with a micro USB cable.
  • You can buy a replacement battery ($11) and easily install it if needed (I didn’t need one for 3 years).
  • You can buy an angled wall mount ($11) to improve the adjustability of your view.
  • It is VERY tested and true. It has over 30,000 reviews on Amazon, and been getting these great reviews for over 5 years
  • You can even get a travel case that fits this monitor (I wish I’d known sooner). If you’re like me, I send this baby monitor to the babysitter’s daily so it’s nice to give it adequate protection.


  • The screen is small (3.5 inches), which made me unsure about purchasing, but it didn’t end up mattering to me at all.
  • The VAVA has better specs.

SIDE NOTE: I’ve NEVER seen another baby monitor system that has as many very affordable, widely available replacement parts, add-ons and accessories as the Infant Optics baby monitor.


Baby will often learn to climb before they learn to walk, so gating off staircases is essential when they start learning that ability.

If there is an area where baby is never allowed to be, then there’s no need to babyproof there, simply set rules for the household regarding what spaces baby is allowed to be in, and gate those spaces off.

I’m going to share my favorite baby gates. There are A LOT of crappy gates out there, and my favorite brand has held up for years, and multiple babies.

No matter which gate you like, make sure you take measurements! if it’s even 1/4 inch bigger or smaller than the range listed, it WILL NOT work.

1. Best Pressure Mounted Baby Gate – Regalo Tall Baby Gate with Extension

Best Pressure Mounted Baby Gate - Regalo Tall Baby Gate with Extension

I really like the height of this gate. I have it between the main living area and the bathroom/family room/fireplace/basement stairs area in my home.

If you want one that isn’t so tall, you can check out this other Regalo Extra Wide Baby Gate instead, to see if it fits your needs.

My 3.5 year old only JUST gained the height and strength to unlock it, which is fantastic because at age 3 they are all about independence and doing what they want.

This one comes with an extension kit, so it expands to fit openings between 29-36.5 inches wide, and can be pressure mounted or installed with screws.

If you’re not sure where you want your gates at first, go ahead and pressure mount them. Especially when baby is small, they don’t have to weight to knock down a gate that’s properly pressure mounted.

Once you know where they’re needed and wanted, or if you have older kids with more strength, you will want to fully install it with screws and/or wall anchers.

This one is also really good for my dog, who can jump over a smaller gate easily.

2. Most Versatile – Regalo 192-Inch Super Wide Adjustable Baby Gate and Play Yard

Most Versatile - Regalo 192-Inch Super Wide Adjustable Baby Gate and Play Yard

This is hands down the most useful gate item we’ve purchased. Here’s some of the MANY ways we’ve used it.

  • You can add and remove links
  • Installs to a wall for a more secure fit
  • Fold it up for travel
  • Create an enclosed space to use it as a playard or a safe play space in your home or office
  • This baby gate is highly portable, so you can set up temporary gates in different areas in just a few minutes.
  • At the top of our stairs is an extremely strange and inconvenient space for a gate and after trying several gates I could NOT find one to fit. So I have a few links of this gate set up in the upstairs hallway instead (not directly by the stairs).

We have found this particular gate system so useful that we actually ordered a second set to have more links to utilize in different areas of the house.

If you use this gate freestanding, you need to understand that baby will be able to move it and make it wobble. If that makes you uncomfortable, then you should attach it to the wall.

3. Best Staircase Suitable Baby Gate – Munchkin Extending XL Tall and Wide Hardware Baby Gate

Staircase Suitable Baby Gate - Munchkin Extending XL Tall and Wide Hardware Baby Gate

Staircase baby gates are tricky because everybody’s space is different. It took me 4 tries to get one that actually worked in my house, and even that one eventually tore the drywall where it was anchored.

This is probably the reason that almost all of these have a 4 star or lower average rating. It doesn’t mean the product isn’t quality, they just don’t work for everyone.

This one has the highest rating I could find, at 4.4 stars. It extends 33 – 56 inches wide, and as you can see, it mounts to a wall so there is no bar across the bottom to step over. That is super important.

Installing a regular gate such as a pressure mounted one at the top of the stairs is like a death trap. Just don’t do it.


Baby proofing is a tricky thing because everybody’s home and hazzards are different.

I take a semi cautious approach to babyproofing. You will find that you do NOT need to babyproof in the beginning. When baby starts to get more and more mobile, you will start to notice things that they are able to get into.

And since babies should never be allowed to roam freely without supervision, you will be there to notice, tell baby no, and explain to them why they can’t touch a certain thing (they understand more than most people think).

Once you notice their new ability, or sense that they are close to being able to reach something they shouldn’t be touching, you baby-proof that thing.

NOTE: Every baby will go through a head bumping phase. Some more than others, but it typically only lasts a few weeks, and because they are low to the ground, you’ll find that they don’t fall hard.

Baby will LEARN from bumping things, and they will become more coordinated.

Surrounding them in a room padded in every direction will actually hinder the process of developing coordination and learning to handle their environment.

That being said, if you have exposed sharp brick corners or something similar, you may want to cover them or gate off the area.

So here is my list of Baby proofing items for your baby registry, starting with the ones I actually found that I needed, and I’ll include some others that I didn’t need, but you might.

And if you are confused about it or really not sure what you’ll need, then just wait! don’t get anything until you meet your baby, and start to understand your babyproofing needs better.

1. Magnetic Cabinet Locks – Set of 12 and 2 Keys

for your baby registry necessities list

When I finally got sick of my 1 year old emptying the pantry onto the floor every hour or so, I decided I had to finally lock the cabinets.

But I didn’t want anything that made my kitchen look ugly, or damaged anything.

So on more research, I found these magnetic cabinet locks, that you install inside your cabinets. You then use a magnet on the outside of the door to unlock it so you can open the cabinet or drawer.

TIP: At first, until you remember where the locks are located, you will have to put some kind of label on the outside to remind you.

Anyways, I absolutely love these. You can even remove them carefully using a hair dryer to warm up the adhesive.

I recommend this particular set because it comes with a unique installation device that would have made installation a lot more fool proof for me.

You can also flip a simple switch to turn off the lock entirely, which is a SUPER nice feature if you’re doing a bunch of cooking when baby isn’t around.

2. Double Door Cabinet Baby Proofing Locks

for your baby registry necessities list

We tried the magnetic locks on our cabinets but we found that baby is still able to pull the bottom of the door open quite a bit when the magnet was installed at the top, and we didn’t want to cause any damage from tugging.

So these are quick and easy to use on any double door cabinets you might have in your kitchen.

3. Furniture Tethers

for your baby registry necessities list

YES, you need these for tall furniture. Don’t rush, these are much more needed for older toddlers… But don’t forget either.

For example, my 3 year old recently told me nonchalantly as he was putting his clothes away in the top dresser drawer, “this is where I practice my pull-ups”… And I about died.

Fortunately, it is strapped to the wall, and I gave him a long, serious lecture about how he could seriously hurt or kill himself doing that on furniture.

This is a very bright kid who has had this explained to him before. That’s why it’s important to be safe. Many kids die every year because of furniture tipping over, so please use the safety wall tethers on your furniture.

4. Door Handle Childproof Covers

for your baby registry necessities list

These are great to have once baby can reach door handles. They won’t figure out how to open them right away, but when they do, it’s important to have these on hand to pop them onto doors that shouldn’t be opened.

For example, we keep one on the inside of our son’s door, simply because we don’t want him running around the house at night without us knowing about it.

5. Alternate Style Door Handle Locks

for your baby registry necessities list

These ones look great for those of you that have this door handle style. They are a little more pricey because they require a more sophisticated locking mechanism.

6. Stove Knob Covers – Set of 5

for your baby registry necessities list

We do have these on our stove, and they have held up well. These didn’t become useful until my first son became older.

In my opinion, the biggest danger here is when your 3 year old decides he wants to be independent and do some “cooking”, even though he knows he’s not allowed to touch the stove.

7. Oven Lock

for your baby registry necessities list

I don’t have one of these, personally. My older son knows he’s not allowed to open it, and the little one can’t reach and isn’t strong enough to open the door yet.

For some ovens that can tip easily when weight is put down on the door, I would DEFINITELY have one of these.

You can test this by putting 30 or 40 lbs of weight down on the door and seeing if it starts to tip.

8. Edge and Corner Bumpers

for your baby registry necessities list

If you have some particularly sharp edges that need to be covered, these look great, and come in 3 colors.

This isn’t something I needed, but some furniture is more hazardous than others for sure, so you’ll have to judge this for yourself.


As many parents can attest, there are times in every baby’s life that they JUST. WON’T. SLEEP.

This section should help you to have what you need to assist baby to sleep when needed.


So this one, you will find out, is TRULY ESSENTIAL. I specify a bouncer and NOT a swing, because we found the swing very disappointing in comparison to the bouncer with our kids. Some people love them though, I just can’t recommend them personally.

For both of my babies, having a bouncer SAVED our sanity. For real. You don’t know until you experience it.

NOTE: I never found an electronic bouncer that actually bounced my boys enough for their liking. So the recommendations below are based not only on the electronic bounce, but that you can manually bounce them with a foot or hand.

1. BabyBijorn Bouncer

for your baby registry necessities list

This bouncer is pricey. It looks simple. But it’s worth EVERY PENNY. BabyBijorn is hands down the industry leader when it comes to bouncers, and with good reason.

If you don’t believe me, read the reviews (over 2000, average 4.8 stars) by parents who reluctantly bought this, and ate their words after seeing how great it is, all the way through the toddler years.

Eventually your baby will learn to bounce themselves, which can occupy them for quite some time. You can buy a toy attachment for it as well, but that’s certainly not required.

This one folds down completely flat, so it’s fantastic for travel, going to grandma’s house or the babysitter, or for people with a smaller home.

2. Fisher Price Fawn Bouncer

for your baby registry necessities list

This is the first one we purchased (eventually we got the BabyBijorn bouncer as well). It is less useful than the other one when the baby gets older, but it works VERY WELL for helping to put baby to sleep at night or for naps.

It is much less expensive, but it is not foldable so it takes up a much bigger footprint when it’s not in use.

This one does have an electronic bouncing function that the BabyBijorn doesn’t have, but like I said above, it wasn’t bouncy enough for my babies so we had to manually bounce them anyways.


I have never met a mom who used a baby carrier that didn’t LOVE IT. Here are some of the reasons why this is an absolute newborn baby necessity (and for that matter, a toddler must-have as well).

  • Most babies calm down, stop crying and often go to sleep within minutes of being placed in a well fitted, good quality carrier.
  • It allows easy, hands-free skin-to-skin time with baby.
  • Sometimes you can even nurse baby while they are in the carrier.
  • DADDIES are able to use them to bond with baby, and give mommy some me time without having to be stressed that baby is upset.

That being said, this is not an area to skimp, or pinch pennies. Here are some reasons why:

  • Cheap, poorly designed carriers are not good for your body, sometimes causing stress on the neck or shoulders and can cause headaches. You should be able to comfortably wear your baby in a carrier for several hours straight with no discomfort.
  • Sometimes the cheaper carriers don’t offer as many carrying options. Once they get past the newborn phase, many babies will prefer front facing, or piggy back carry, so you’ll want a good carrier with lots of options.
  • The materials will be cheaper quality, and for something you will probably use every single day for quite some time, you want it to hold up well.
  • Daddy and mommy won’t always find the same carrier is comfortable for them. It is worth it to have two different ones (like me and my hubby), OR just get on that is highly adjustable and well reviewed by people of all different shapes and sizes.

1. Best Overall – ErgoBaby Omni 360 Carrier

for your baby registry necessities list

This is the highest rated, most adjustable, and comfortable carrier on the market.

There are a LOT of new companies making carriers that are cheap, inferior products. Ergobaby carriers have been around a while, and are tried and true.

This is the only carrier out of 4 that I’ve owned that didn’t give me a headache or body pain of any kind after a long day of walking while babywearing, so I highly recommend it.

If you want to use these carriers for a small infant from 7-12 pounds, you will need the infant insert attachment as well.

2. Most Versatile – Moby Wrap Carrier

for your baby registry necessities list

Wrap style carriers are great, and SUPER versatile, because there are a ton of different types of carry that you can do. I’ve even seen people carry twin babies one on each side with the same wrap.

The drawback to this type is that there is more of a learning curve. You will have to practice getting this on with baby, which can be intimidating at first.

There are a LOT of YouTube tutorials that will help you to learn how to do it, and even facebook groups for babywearing.

If you feel like this is too hard, then I suggest going with the easier option and get the Ergo 360 above.


Swaddling is not something that every baby likes.

BUT, it should definitely be a tool you are prepared to use, because MANY babies do SLEEP BETTER when swaddled, even if they scream their little lungs out at first.

The startle reflex is very strong in newborns, and this is sumething that can wake them up very frequently.

Here are my favorite swaddling products. You should probably learn to use a standard square swaddle cloth, but many parents find them frustrating, and lots of babies learn to wriggle out of them in very short order.

So these can be lifesavers, making new parenting life a little easier. I recommend having at least 2 different options to try, and here are my favorites.

1. Happiest Baby Sleepea Swaddle

for your baby registry necessities list

This one is my favorite. It’s even been improved since I got mine, it now has an inner swaddle for the arms before you do up the zipper.

The Sleepea Swaddle zips from the top or bottom, for easy diaper changes without taking the whole sack off.

I used this with my boys as newborns through when they began rolling over (because swaddling is no longer safe at that time).

2. Halo Sleep Sack

It’s important to consider what season it will be when your baby is a newborn. This one is made of micro-fleece, which might be too warm for the summer months, unless your baby’s room is air conditioned.

This was one of the few swaddling items that we could get tight enough for our sons to not wriggle out of.

There is also a 100% cotton version, which is a little stretchier, and cooler. Personally, I had one of each kind, and I used the crap out of them, because even after the can roll over, you can simply velcro under the arms instead of over.

My second son is 15 months old as I’m writing this, and he still fits into his size small sleep sack (he’s on the small end) so we’ve gotten quite a bit of use out of it.

NOTE: This sack also comes in a newborn size if you want it. I always used the small for my boys, who were both 7 lbs.

3. Burt’s Bees Organic Cotton Sleep Sack

for your baby registry necessities list

There will come a time (usually around 4 months) when your baby will start rolling over, and you won’t be able to safely swaddle them anymore.

So if you want some regular sleep sacks without the swaddle wings, these ones are good. I picked the Burt’s Bees Sleep Sack because they’re reasonable priced for a 100% organic cotton product.

You don’t need one with sleeves, as you can simply dress baby in some warm jammies underneath.


This is under the “sleeping aide” section, because having a nightlight may not help them sleep, but having the WRONG one will make it more difficult for them to sleep.

You COULD go with a $2 plug-into-the-wall light from just about any store.

You will need a nightlight, but here are some things to consider.


  • You might not have a plug in an appropriate spot (like me).
  • Nightlights are typically too bright, messing with baby’s sleep.
  • Some nightlights have colored covers. Blue light is particularly harmful to human sleep cycles and circadian rhythm. Go for a red or yellow hue for the best sleep.

My recommendations below are not $2. And I don’t recommend the super cute, musical, animal toys that project colored lights on the ceiling. For the same reason you won’t find a mobile on this list, because they DO NOT help babies sleep.

And you’ll find out soon enough, that your baby sleeping will be the top of your list of priorities.

After trying MANY nightlights for my boys, both cheap and expensive, I can tell you definitively, that you truly get what you pay for.

1. VAVA Home VA-CL006 Night Light for Babies

for your baby registry necessities list

I found this one after researching the VAVA Baby Monitor (above), and I was very impressed with the thought put into this product.

  • It has a charging dock
  • You can also charge it with a plain USB cable on the go.
  • Baby safe, made from kid friendly materials
  • It’s ok for them to handle/play with.
  • Super portable, so it’s great for middle of the night nursing sessions.
  • White or yellow light.
  • VERY dimmable (watch their video to see for yourself)
  • Easy touch operation.

2. Mothermed Owl Night Light

for your baby registry necessities list

If you want one with a remote, I like this one. I don’t recommend you use the other available colors except for red or yellow if you’re using it at night during sleep time.

Personally, I have the nightlight right by the door. But if you don’t, having a remote might solidify your choice.


I put these under the same category because they both improve core strength for babies who can’t sit up yet.

They are used at different ages and stages, so I had one of each and found them SO useful.


The sitting assistance seats are super helpful. I loved mine for helping my baby (as young as 6 weeks old!) sit up to feel like he was more of a participant with the family, and able to see what we were doing.

Baby isn’t supposed to use a jumper until 4 months old (although I confess, my first son was ready for his at 3 months and did just fine), so that’s why I had the sit-me-up seat in addition to the jumperoo.

NOTE: This kind of seat is NOT safe to be put onto countertops, tables, or any other kind of height while baby is sitting in it. They can and will bounce or nudge these off the edge, and there are many babies who have been injured because their parents ignored this fact.

4. Fisher-Price Sit Me Up Seat

for your baby registry necessities list

You can use this one starting at around 6 weeks old, and it is fantastic. It has a nice wide base, and extends under baby’s feet so you can put it outside on the grass or sand or wherever.

This one comes in 4 different themes. I have a froggy one for my babies, but I picked this panda one because it has the paws on the front, which is just an additional thing for baby to play with.

These fold up quite flat for storage or travel, and well worth the money.

5. Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up Seat with Tray

for your baby registry necessities list

I found this one which is new since I had babies. It’ just like the last one, but with a tray! This is a really nice option for more sensory play for your little one, in addition to the two attached toys.

6. Bumbo Sitting Aide

for your baby registry necessities list

This is a very popular and well rated brand.

I was happy with the Fischer-Price seats above, but I know there are a ton of parents who swear by these. There is also an attachable tray available as well.


These were absolutely LIFE CHANGING for my sons and myself.

Life changing for him, because all of a sudden, he had this new ability, he could sit/stand and even BOUNCE by himself…

And life changing for me because all of a sudden I had more freedom to walk around and be able to get a few things done while he played, happy as a clam.

1. My Favorite – Fisher-Price Rainforest Jumperoo

for your baby registry necessities list

Alright, I’ve done a ton of research on these, and there’s no denying that Fischer Price makes the best Jumeroos. And actually they even have “jumperoo” trademarked.

Some of the other brands look very cheaply made and breakable in comparison. I can attest that this one is very sturdy.

But seriously, this jumperoo is amazing. This is the exact one I have, and I will always recommend it. It’s provided me with countless hours of “get sh*t done” time while baby played happily.

You can take it apart to store it or travel if needed, but if you travel a lot, check out #3 below because that one is easily folded and meant for travel.

2. Newer Theme – Fisher-Price Animal Wonders Jumperoo

for your baby registry necessities list

This is another, newer themed option from Fischer-Price.

It’s hard to say if it’s any better than the first one because I haven’t used it personally, but the reviews are similarly awesome, and it looks like it’s solidly constructed like the rainforest Jumperoo above.

3. Summer Pop ‘n Jump Portable Activity Center

for your baby registry necessities list

This one made the list because it’s super portable. If you travel a lot, I would definitely go this route instead of (or in addition to) one of the others above.

It comes with a carrying case and folds up easily for transportation. If I had known about this when I had my first baby, I would have definitely owned one, just to take with me various places (I traveled a lot with my babies).


But in my effort to this article became so long, that I decided to remove it and make a separate post. So click here to visit my Breastfeeding Essentials article!


Every parent has a different approach to feeding baby once they hit 6 months (no sooner or you compromise baby’s gut health).

Here are the things you’ll need whether you choose baby food or not (like me).


You won’t need one until 6 months, when your baby is ready to try their first food, but it should definitely be on your baby registry must haves list.

I recommend getting one that will be very versatile no matter what age your child is.

1. Best Value for it’s Features – Ingenuity SmartServe 4-in-1 High Chair

for your baby registry necessities list

This is the newer version of the high chair I’ve been using for the past 4 years with my two kids.

They have improved it now so it features a swing-out tray (!), which my older model doesn’t do. This matters because it’s not always convenient to have to hold the tray in one hand.

This way you can swing the tray away from baby while you’re cleaning them up, so they can’t get their hands dirty again.

I love mine because I can use one high chair for both my toddler and my baby, both kids can be fastened in without having to buy any additional booster seat or high chair.

2. Most Complete and Versatile – Graco Blossom 6 in 1 Convertible High Chair

for your baby registry necessities list

This also looks like a great option. A little more pricey then the Ingenuity above, but even MORE versatile, because you can detach the high chair AND the booster seat so that either one or both can be fastened to regular chairs if desired.

3. Space Saving / Travel Option – Cosco Simple Fold High Chair

for your baby registry necessities list

This one folds up easily to a compact size, making me really sad I hadn’t bought this a long time ago.

This is a really nice option if you:

  • Travel a lot with your baby.
  • You need to take your high chair to the babysitter’s or family member’s homes.
  • Or you don’t want to spend a lot (it’s only $44!).


So some parents decide to use baby food, and some people (like me) prefer Baby Led Weaning, where babies eat solids and finger foods starting at 6 months old.

Depending on what method you choose, your feeding needs will differ.

I’m going to start with what I know, as a parent who has never given baby food to my boys. Then I’ll give you a few ideas for puree baby feeding as well.


I love using silicone for my kids. I don’t use ANYTHING plastic for them. Why? Because silicone can be heated up by any means safely, and it doesn’t leach chemicals into baby’s food like plastic does.

I would use stainless steel, but if it ever got put in the microwave by accident… Goodbye microwave.

I would use glass, but…. Duh.

Even if you don’t heat up the food in plastic, it doesn’t matter. The AAP released a recommendation to never use the dishwasher for plastic because this releases the chemicals in the plastic.

The numbers needed below are considering when your baby will be up to 3 meals per day, usually around 12 months.

You can get away with less, if you’re willing to hand wash some of it in between meals. With my first baby I did, with my second… LOL.

1. Silicone Bibs – You Will Need 4-8

for your baby registry necessities list

It is good to keep one bib in the diaper bag at all times. These silicone bibs don’t catch everything, but they are really essential to make cleanup easier (although I still recommend stripping baby down to their diaper at mealtimes, if they’re feeding themselves like my boys).

Also, your baby will learn very quickly that they can scoop up and eat what they’ve dropped in their bib, so less wasted food.

I picked out three sellers on Amazon that have adorable options for boys and girls, you can check them out HERE, HERE and HERE.

2. Baby Utensils – You Will Need 3-4 Sets

for your baby registry necessities list

Ok so, when you first give your baby utensils, you’ll wonder why on earth you bother. But keep giving them their tools! They will play with them, throw them on the floor etc., but then they will start using them.

It’s good for their development, plus they have fun, because babies want to use everything that YOU use.

The set pictured above is by far the best one on amazon, and a great value for the 5 pack. I was surprised how hard it was to find these.

3. 360 Cups – You Will Need 3-6 (I have 8… seriously)

for your baby registry necessities list

These are fantastic. I have 6 of them and I use them for breast milk after 1 year of age, and for my toddler also. They are basically spill proof, unless your baby throws it at the floor.

They come with a lid also, which is great if you’re tossing one in the diaper bag.

I can’t really say enough about how useful these are. I started giving these with water at 6 months old. It takes baby a few months to figure out how to get water out of it, but once they figure it out you’re dandy.

And these won’t mess up your toddler’s teeth like a bottle or sippy cup will.

I use the stainless steel ones above because I don’t give my kids plastic, but you can also buy a plastic version here.

4. Silicone Plates – You Will Need 3+

for your baby registry necessities list

These are great, and before you ask…

“What about the ones with the neat suction cups on the bottom?

Those suction cups last about 10 seconds before your baby or toddler will figure out how to pick it up. Babies WILL dump plates, it’s inevitable. It’s part of learning how to create effects, so don’t let it stress you out.

If you want the suction cups anyways, you can get them here. You will pay a little more but these ones look like great quality and they have some fun shapes and characters available too.

5. Silicone Bowls – You Will Need 3-6

for your baby registry necessities list

Again, your kiddo WILL figure out the suction cups,it’s only a matter of time… but honestly it looks like these days they all have them anyways, except for these bigger square ones (which I have and use every single day for my 1 and 3 year old).

Or you can get this set that comes with a bowl, lid and silicone spoon (the lid is nice because often baby might not want to eat all of their food.

6. Safe Drinking Cups – You will Need 3-6

for your baby registry necessities list

I like silicone cups like the one pictured (which comes in 5 different colors), and I also like stainless steel cups. I own several of each kind, but my favorite started cup is the silicone one with two handles.

For my boys, before they figured out the 360 cups, I would simply hold the cup for them as they drank.

Soon they started helping me, and then when they had the 360 cup figured out, I went with that because it’s easier. You’ll know when you can trust your toddler with an open cup, probably over the age of two.

Here’s a 4 pack of simple stainless steel cups that are available in three sizes (I recommend 8 oz to start), and here’s a 2 pack that are stainless steel, with a handle, lids and straws included.

7. Silicone Placemats – You Will Need 2-3

for your baby registry necessities list

These are great for transitioning your toddler from the high chair to the table or kitchen counter.

The set pictured above is one that I purchased for my toddler. They are fantastic now that he wants to move around, eating in different places like the big table and kitchen counter.

These are dishwasher safe and microwave safe (although I don’t know why you would microwave them…). They smell a bit when you first receive them but it goes away after they go through the dishwasher.

I also found this style, which I’ve not tried yet, but it has a food catcher that hangs over the edge of the countertop. I haven’t tried them but for a smooth surface, they look like they would be great.

8. Baby Food Feeding Accessories

for your baby registry necessities list

If you plan to give baby food to your baby, I recommend making your own because of high arsenic levels found in prepackaged baby foods, especially those with rice.

This set includes three sizes of silicone feeders, a feeding spoon and a teething ring.


Regardless of whether you intend to breastfeed (you should, if possible), you will probably need bottles. Here are a few considerations:

  • Your baby may not take the first type of bottle you give them, so you may need more than one brand.
  • I don’t recommend registering for a bunch of the same kind until you’re sure you know what your baby likes.
  • They sell special ones for different purposes, but they are usually plastic, and as I said before, you don’t want to get plastic chemicals into your baby’s milk when you warm it up.
  • You might want to choose your breast pump first. As I said above in the breast pump section, some pumps take standard sized bottles (like Medela), and some take wide mouth bottles (Spectra). It’s a pain to have both, with their lids and accessories kicking around a house already full of too much baby stuff.
  • I recommend buying the bigger 8-9 oz bottles and not the 4-5 oz size, because after a few months, baby will outgrow the small ones.

NOTE: Don’t be fooled by BPA free!!! It is mainly a marketing gimmick. BPA free plastic STILL has endocrine disrupting chemicals inside of it that do leach out into food after being warmed or frozen.

My recommendations are all made of glass. I used glass bottles for my babies and they never broke one, and they are safe to heat up inside a pot of water on the stove (never microwave breastmilk).

1. LifeFactory Glass Standard Mouth Baby Bottle Set

LifeFactory Glass Standard Mouth Baby Bottle Set for your baby registry necessities list

These were my favorite, especially as my babies got older, and they wanted to handle their own bottles.

There were many drops, but with the silicone sleeve, none of these bottles ever broke.

Keep in mind that if your baby doesn’t like the nipple that comes with the bottle, you can usually attach a different bottle nipple/top, as long as it’s a standard sized bottle opening (that’s what I had to do with my first son).

You can also buy flat caps for these bottles. I definitely recommend having flat caps, because as baby gets older they will transition to other drinking devices.

So storing milk in the fridge with a nipple which is harder to clean becomes very tedious.

The set pictured above is a very good value and comes with all the extra tops and stage 2 nipples, but you can get the separate bottles and accessories as well.

2. Origin Glass Co. Wide Mouth Baby Bottles

Origin Glass Co. Wide Mouth Baby Bottles for your baby registry essentials list

If you want a wide mouth option that has a silicone cover, these ones look very nice and well rated.

They have a 9 oz size and a 4 oz size available.

They do not have the optional flat caps and other things to buy separately, but you can probably try other wide mouth flat bottle caps to fit these.

3. EvenFlo Glass Standard Mouth Bottles

EvenFlo Glass Standard Mouth Bottles for your baby registry essentials list

These are inexpensive, and have held up quite well in our home. I prefer the LifeFactory bottles above, but for literally a fraction of the price, you might want to try these.

Pro Tip: Keep in mind that if your baby doesn’t take a certain bottle (like my first son), you just have to find a nipple they like, you don’t have to use a plastic bottle.

I used the super cheap Parent’s Choice bottles from Walmart (around $1 EACH). I used the plastic bottle to pump into (because glass is too heavy for pumping), and my son liked the nipples, so I used the cheap nipples on the glass bottles and it worked out really well for us.


Here are some other essentials you might not have thought of for your own self care.

It is very easy to focus only on your baby’s needs and forget your own, so hopefully these ideas will help you to be prepared to take care of yourself, too.

1. FridaMom Birth and Postpartum Recovery Kit

FridaMom Birth and Postpartum Recovery Kit for your baby registry essentials list

You can certainly buy these items individually, but I thought that this kit was an excellent idea, and it has some great items in it to help you through the initial birth and first few days/weeks of postpartum recovery.

2. Organic Postpartum Herbal Sitz Bath

Organic Postpartum Herbal Sitz Bath for your baby registry essentials list

This is a high quality, organic herbal mix specially made for postpartum recovery.

I used it myself in the tub, but even more convenient that they have these new sitz bath toilet seat attachments, which would make your herbs last a lot longer, and might fit your needs better, especially if you don’t have to time to take a full bath every day.

3. Earth Mama Organic Perenneal Balm

Earth Mama Organic Perenneal Balm for your baby registry essentials list

I love this company and their products. They have a great selection of motherhood products from pregnancy to birth, postpartum and baby. They are excellent quality products that I use myself and love.

Each product page has tips on how best to use their products and there are some really ingenious ideas there, which made me wish I’d read them before having my babies.

4. Earth Mama Organic Sitz Bath Packets

Earth Mama Organic Sitz Bath Packets for your baby registry essentials list

Similar to the loose herbal sitz bath above, this one comes in convenient packets that you can use several different ways, including in a toilet sitz bath attachment, in “padsicles”, and as a healing insert over your pad.

5. Earth Mama Postpartum Herbal Perineal Spray

Earth Mama Herbal Perineal Spray for postpartum

This was one of my favorite postpartum products because you can give yourself a quick spray after each time you go to the bathroom, to help heal your lady parts.

This one features a unique upside down sprayer so that you don’t lose the ability to spray as the liquid runs low.

This one from MotherLove I also highly recommend.

6. Organic Cotton Overnight Pads

Organic Cotton Overnight Pads for the postpartum period

OK, you might not want to actually add this one to your reigstry, but seriously ladies, don’t use the conventional, chemical filled pads and other postpartum products.

Your lady parts are highly absorbant at the best of times, and add that to the sensitivity of healing from birth, and really…

They DESERVE the best, after everything they’ve been through.

7. Motherlove Organic Baby and Postpartum Gift Set

Motherlove Organic Baby and Postpartum Gift Set for your baby registry

This is a gift set of high quality organic postpartum essentials. It includes:

  • Birth and Baby Oil
  • Sitz Bath Spray
  • Nipple Cream (recommended in the breastfeeding essentials section)
  • Diaper Balm
  • Pregnant Belly Salve (just as important when shrinking your skin as it is when stretching it)
  • Reusable Motherlove tote bag



You will always have some people who don’t even look at your registry… Think technically illiterate Aunt Erma, who might not even make it to your baby shower at all because she’s forgetful in her old age.

Some people will make handmade blankets or other beautiful handmade keepsakes (which is always wonderful, you want those!).

And some will just buy you random baby stuff at WalMart or wherever (they have some nice things, don’t get me wrong!), instead of looking at your Amazon registry.


Whether you register for them or not.

You will also probably have family randomly buy you baby clothes that they saw at Costco because it was just “too cute”.

So if you want to put clothes on your registry, stick with just a few essential items (think zip-up onesies and body suits) in a variety of sizes (babies grow out of newborn sizes FAST), because you know you’ll get more than that anyways.

Baby clothes are also very easy to get at mom to mom sales, online marketplaces like facebook or craigslist, and garage sales. You can get clothes that are in great shape (or even new!) in bulk for very little money, which is not something you can say about most other baby items.

You can also buy plain baby stuff in bulk online very inexpensively (here’s some on Amazon you can register for).

If you do register for clothes, be sure to consider what season it will be when your baby hits each age. You can also go by how big you and your family members were as babies, and how fast did they grow, for a general gauge of how big yours will be.


…Of all different brands. Regardless of what you registered for. If they’re a brand you don’t want to use, try to save any gift reciepts you can so you can return them.


Not every brand works for every baby. So you may want to keep a few brands that meet your minimum criteria.

For me, they had to be free of harmful chemicals or fragrances (just another word for harmful chemicals), and even better, biodegradable (A.K.A expensive).

So I recommend putting a few different acceptable brands of diapers on your registry, just in the hopes that people will see them and buy the right kind. Here is my favorite for on a budget, and my favorite luxury biodegradable.

There’s no hope for Aunt Erma though… She will probably get you the discount ones from WalMart.


If you decide to go with cloth diapers (I did!), I highly recommend researching the different types before registering for anything.

There are a lot of different cloth diapering methods or “systems”, and the different parts don’t always go with each other, so do some research on the different diapering systems so that you can make sure you’re registering for the right things.

I chose the pre-fold / snappy / diaper cover system because it got the best reviews for being basically blow-out proof, and I can attest to that. I’ve NEVER had a poop blow out in nearly 4 years of using them with my two kids.

I recommend buying:

  • 2 dozen prefolds in each size
  • 2 sets of 5 snappies (they get misplaced or lost eventually)
  • At least 10 diaper covers in both sizes (I have 15 each, personally).

Let me know in the comments of you would like me to do a blog article about my cloth diapering system.

The covers can sometimes be wiped out and used a second time without being washed (if they’re not soaked, obviously), they are all highly adjustable and so they grow with your baby and you adjust them as needed.

The smaller size will get much less use than the larger size, because baby grows so fast, however they also go through more diapers per day.

That initial investment of around $350-$400 for cloth diapers has saved us literally THOUSANDS of dollars in disposable diaper costs, and nothing goes to the land fill, except for the disposables we use for the babysitter and the diaper bag.

If you haven’t decided on a system yet, ask for gift cards from Amazon or your other favorite retailers so that you can grab them after your shower.



You think you know, but you’ll still be shocked when it happens. Try not to register for a lot of newborn sized stuff, if any (you’ll get some anyways).

An exception to that would be adjustable things such as cloth diaper covers, that you can make bigger as your baby grows.

Some babies are born already fitting into size 0-3 and skip the newborn clothes all together! Even if they do wear NB size baby clothes, they will usually grow out of them within the first month or two.

The other sizes they are able to stay in much longer, especially once they get to 9, 12, 18 month sizes and higher. So try to register for those size, or better yet, grab up second hand baby clothes in advance from garage sales or mom-to-mom sales.

Alright gals, after honestly, countless hours of writing, research and over 16,000 words (!), I really hope this list of baby registry must-haves was super helpful to you.

If it was helpful, please consider pinning it! Or share it on Facebook or Instagram, and tag someone else who’s pregnant and would find this content useful.

I have probably forgotten a few things, and I will add to this article if I remember anything else. In the mean time, make sure to download the free checklist to aide you in building your registry.

Like I said before, these will all be more or less essential depending on your needs and lifestyle, but I haven’t included anything here that I haven’t (or wouldn’t) actually buy myself.

Please leave me a comment with any feedback or questions you have, or feel free to shoot me an email, or message me on one of our social media channels! I’m always happy to hear from readers.

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Baby Registry Necessities - must have baby essentials for your baby registry - ultimate baby registry checklist and free printable pdf


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