So here is a rundown of the baby gear I think we will really need for the baby's arrival and first few months. Most of what we have amassed is due to the generosity of others and came as a hand me down or gift.
- Car Seat: Got the Primo Viaggio Infant seat as a free hand-me-down from friends, so we will be using that and then investing in the Britax convertible seat we planned to get as soon as the baby outgrows the free seat.
- Crib: We got the Arm's Reach Mini-Co-sleeper as a shower gift, and we intend to use that as a sidecar option for our bed until the baby gets bigger. Many friends of mine never needed a larger crib, they just co-sleep, but we are going to just see what works best for us -- We do happen to have a fancy crib as a backup, but I dont know if we will end up using it or not. We'll see. The super-fancy ultra cool Black Bugaboo Gecko Stroller that my parents gave us came with a detachable baby bassinet, which I plan to use as a crib/ Moses Basket when I need one downstairs.
- Slings/Wraps: Maya Wrap was a gift from my sister-in-law -- and I know it will be handy right away; We also borrowed a Moby Wrap on loan from my friend Virginia, because apparently they are great for newborns, but a bit too stretchy for when the kid gets bigger. We got other carriers for later on, but basedon testimonials from friends, those are the ones I suspect we will most use in the first few months.
- Clothes: We were lucky to get lots of hand-me-down infant clothes, but I bought a few gowns at Target (to make nightime changes much easier), a few little hats and some socks just to fill in the gaps. I still want to get some of these Zutano Booties, which my friends swear by. I also have a great red (hand-me-down) Lands End Snowsuit, so I have a feeling the baby will be wearing that a good deal in the beginning...Oh, and my friend Virginia gave us some Rainbow Baby Legs, which are absolutely adorable.
- Diaper Bag/ Changing Stuff: We converted an old kitchen cart into a changing table by securing a pad to the top of it. As for a bag, I did buy a Little Tripper from Land's End, but I also got a large plastic changing pad and waterproof bag and I plan to use these interchangeably with my messenger bag or hiking daypack when I need a larger diaper bag... I just don't see the point of buying a fluffy looking diaper bag. Lord knows we have enough bags as it is!
- Diapers: Since the volume of waste to landfills is significantly lowered when using cloth diapers, and we know so many people who successfully use cloth diapers, we're going with cloth diapers. So, we secured a diaper service (about $15 /week) for the first six weeks... (we have gotten our first delivery already and boy are the cute little diapers!). We also have some Seventh Generation Disposables on hand for travel and night time but I hope not to use disposables too much. Eventually we may move away from the service to washing-our-own diapers after the first 6 weeks (which seems much much cheaper than buying disposables or paying for the service), but we'll see....
- Nursing bras/gear: We were lucky enough to get the Medela Pump in Style as a gift which will be terrificly helpful as I do plan to go back to work and wold like MIke to have the ption of feeding the baby too. We also got a My Brest Friend which my cousin Lisa gave us, and swears by (over the Boppy). I also got recruited for a nursing feedback group at Motherswork, which is going to supply me with several free nursing bras and tops to try...All I have to do is go to their feedback sessions once a month and report on how I like the products!
- Books: After the Baby's Birth: A Woman's Way to Wellness: A Complete Guide for Postpartum Women by Robin Lim, and The Baby Book by Dr. Sears are the two books that I got that I think will be most helpful in our first few weeks.