January 01, 2009,
B.D. asks from Overland Park, KS on December 25, 2008
Need Baby Registry Advice - Overland Park,KS
I'm expecting a baby girl in February, and we just brought home our new 10 and 5 year-old sons from Russia. Life is a little hectic right now, and most of my time is spent taking care of our new boys. A few friends are wanting to host a baby shower for me in January, and I am hearing mixed stories about certain "necessary items" to put on a baby registry. For those who've recently had babies, what items could you not live without? Also, I'd like to just list a few questions:
1) I am going to be able to purchase a new breast pump from my employer (I'm in health care), but I'm not really sure how these things work. Do I need to buy special bottles to fit the particular brand, or is it a one-size-fits-all kind of thing?
2) What is the best way to sterilize bottles, binkies, etc.?
3) What kind of car seat accessories do I really need? Strap covers? Neck Wings? Head Support? Full-Body Support? (I'm going down the Babies R Us checklist.)
4) Is it really okay to use a Pack N' Play type of system if we want the baby to sleep in our room for awhile? The bassinet part of the Pack N' Plays I've seen just don't seem that firm, and I've heard a firm sleeping area is needed to decrease the risk of SIDS.
6) How many crib sheets do I really need?
7) How many sleep sacks/swaddle blankets do I really need?
Thanks in advance for the advice!
J.G. answers from St. Louis on December 26, 2008
I have a medela pump in style. The Dr Brown bottles fit on it.
I rarely sterilized bottles... but I did boil paci's & would use sterilizing bags by medela for bottles too.
The only thing I used was a head support & most car seats come with one. We did use strap covers for a little bit too.
We used a pack & play for his bassinet. For sleeping positioning, I just rolled some towels at his sides. He slept in the bouncer a lot in the beginning b/c he spit up a lot. The bouncer was awesome...
a CD player with instrumental music is good for white noise.
4 crib sheets should be plenty.
Maybe 4 each sleep sacks & swaddle blankets.
I used boppy & MBF, but prefered MBF.
L.B. answers from St. Joseph on December 26, 2008
1) Most of the breast pumps come with pumping bottles. What I pumped into was not what I ultimately gave my children bottles in...they were just temporary storage for me (we used the Playtex Ventairs). But most use the same sized mouth bottles...eventually, I ended up just using the Ventaires on my breast pump. I can highly recommend the Medula dual breast pump (electrical in a bag)...it's awesome and holds up over the years...I've used it for 2 kids and have no doubt in my mind it will last for many more.
2)When I had my first child we bought a sterilzer...it worked fine for about 2 months then petered out...then we just started boiling it all in a big stock pot. Dishwashers are perfectly fine if you have one of those. By the time I had my second we weren't nearly as concerned about the whole sterilization process and my second is healthier than my first.
3)Well your first car seat is generally the pumpkin seat so if you have multiple cars an extra base is nice so you don't have to switch it out. The belt wraps are nice only if it is rubbing baby...for the most part, they don't because you have them in so many clothes. However, the little neck pillow (that looks like the ones adults buy for airplane rides - a U shape) is REALLY nice for holding an infants head in place. When they sleep in those seats they are really limp noodles and it just holds their heads in place. I don't know if it does them more good or us since we always looked at the kids and just automatically felt a crick in our neck looking at them in that position...LOL. The rest is really superfulous stuff they sell you.
4) Perfectly OK to use Pack and Play system in your room. My BFF had her kiddo in it for nearly a year before moving him more permanently to his crib. The upper bassinets are good for such a short time due to the weight restrictions (just like a regular basinnet...about 25 lbs) I wouldn't worry about it.
5) NO you don't need a sleep positioner...they are a waste of money and more reports have shown they are more deterimetal to the kids than helpful. More accidents have been caused because of those - some kids are able to wiggle out of them and suffocate because of them. I would skip it.
6) I would go for 4-6 crib sheets (keep in mind pack n' play sheets are a different size than crib sheets). Here's what I did...get a matress pad protector, then put a crib sheet on, then I got some of the wet pads (like they use for hospitals and nursing homes for incontinance) and put one on top of the sheet and put another crib sheet over that...that way, if baby peed through to the sheet and got it wet I could easily strip one set of sheets away and have the bed already made without having to remake in the middle of the night (a REAL pain in the butt and wakes you up too). Works like a charm...:)
7) How much laundry do you do in a week? i.e. how often? Base it on that...I would say about 5 each...the blankets are really really handy for throwing over pumpkin seats and extra warmth in a car if you need it too...I always had extra of those but not the nursery flannel ones...I liked the waffle style blankets b/c they were cool in the summer and warm in the winter.
8) I personally liked the boppy better b/c I didn't have to worry about inflation levels. The boppy also comes with cover changes and are easy to clean in the washer.
9) The humidifer and heater are more than enough for white noise. I would also recommend one of the womb bears as a comfort item for baby...there were times when nothing I did would soothe my 2 and just activating that did the trick in 15 seconds. Well worth the $20!
As for other stuff I highly recommend...Johnson & Johnson Lavender bedtime bath (AWESOME), A & D diaper CREAM (with zinc)...Babies R Us used to carry them in a pump bottle that was super great for diaper bags...no chance of the bottle opening up and sqeezing out. And definitely, get yourself a supply of Little Tummies Gas Drops, a bottle of Infant's Motrin, and Infants's Tylenol. You never know when you are going to need the stuff and it is handy to have. If you get multiple diaper bags, keep them and pack out extras to go into your car...sometimes baby pukes through everything you have (or think you have) in your regular diaper bag and having an extra is just nice. I also always kept an emergency bag packed in case I had to leave in a hurry. The other item that really rocked was the Fisher Price aquarium that attaches to the crib...some kind of soothing music for baby to play or a button you could press on the pack and play just to help them get back to bed...it's a comfort item that works really well instead of picking them up all the time...My daughter had a really hard time letting go of hers and wanted to move it to her big girl bed b/c she liked the music so much. And definitely get yourself a good baby monitor. Best of luck to you and congratulations!
S.D. answers from Topeka on December 27, 2008
I can help with a few of these questons my opinion
1)Most bottles are compatiable with the breast pumps I have a Medeal and use all sorts of bottles.I'am now switching to only BPA Free bottles
2)Sterilze I love the Medela bags just fillit with the items add a little water and pop it into the microwave can beused over and over upto 10 times and not expensive
3)You don't need any carseat accessories just use what comes with the carseat purchased Why because research is showing that the baby is incorrectly installed with other store bought items that are added to the carseat leaving gaps between restraint and baby if you find it hard to believe go to a carseat check lane
4)A pack in play is only ideal for a baby who is a little older you don't want them to sleep in it over nite a nap is ok but limit it to when you are in the same room they aren't firm at all and really I don't see them being all that comfortable for baby a crib is the best for baby on back only
5)Sleep positioner isn't necessary it'll only increase the risk of SIDS
6)Crib sheets I can live with 3 anymore thye become in the way and where do you store them they hardly wear out
7)Sleep sacks I have 3 as well and blankets well to many to list because they are needed at home and on outings
8)I use the boppy the only one I have ever used but don't let them fool ya a bed pillow will work just as
9)White noiseI hate it you'll get enough from the baby monitor
I'm a sahm of 2 and 1 more on the way 10 weeks left to go!!!
S.H. answers from Kansas City on December 29, 2008
Congrats B.! On all your new children! Okay, here goes... We just has a baby girl 6 months ago. From my experience:
1. Breast pump- they are btl brand particular. I have a 3 year old Modela I bought from a friend. I got the new tubes and sanitized the btls and I was good to go. I only used 4 bottles. 2 to use while I'm pumping and while those were dirty I put 2 in the pump bag to take to work with me. I bought those plastic storage bags and the cheap ones worked just as good as the modela ones, although they were a little thinner. Your Local leche league ( they will contact you in the hospital) will help you with the pump. They will start you in the hospital with a hospital pump too, which is very helpful.
2.Sterilize- I use the dishwasher and I bought those microwave bags that use steam.
Those seem to work but I had to take the items out and rinse them off. I also just use hot water and soap. She still healthy.
3.Car seat- Strap covers kept her head up and the head /full body fuzzy liner was good but we did use it long (2months?), she got hot and she was too big. The strap covers we had to cut almost half off to push the harness up, but they worked.
4-pack and Play (still using the top part) LOVE IT! I have a graco travel crib without the little raised diaper changer pad thing. It has a suspended top part with a pad and it works great, she slept in our bedrm in it for the first 2-3 months. She's 6 mos and is almost touching both ends, so she will graduate to the bottom part to play in. U can use rolled up towels next to her side to keep her on her back and from rolling over. Keep those bumper pads AWAY and out of your crib till she's about 5 months (rolling over and sticking her feet in the slats). She needs the air circulating, the ceiling fan also is known to reduce the rick of SIDS. I had hers on low every night, you never know.
6.Crib sheets- I have 4. 2 are still in the package. I have used those square waterproof pads which are great! I put those down on the top of the crib sheets then a recieving blanket over that. It works well when change her and wash those weekly.
7. Sleep sacks- everyone gave me them, you will use these a lot when she's young, so depending on how often you do laundry is how many you need. She was in hers every day, For the first... 2 months maybe. They are great! No buttons, no zippers! She didn't like to be swaddled til she was about 3-4 months, then I only had 2.
8. I had the best friend pillow. gives you great back support, but your baby grows longer than it is. The boppy you can use even after your baby is starting to sit. I would go for the boppy. I wish I did.
9. We have both and we do not have a noise device. I still might go get one at target. I have a radio in there and it just doesn't work as good. I have to do that by Wed, thanks!
Sorry this was soooo long, I hope it helped.
Also I'm 40, been married 10 years and my little girl is almost 7 months old. When you look things up, check the reviews from other people too. It's alway good to know what other people have experienced, good or bad.
Good luck and take care!
B.S. answers from Kansas City on December 27, 2008
1) No idea! :)
2) Before first use is the only time bottles are recommended to be sterilized. When ours need to be washed now I just wash them in the sink or dishwasher if there is room. For the binkies, I can't help, I have thumb suckers.
3) The only extra we have is a coverall for the carseat where her face sticks out. It's too cold here in KC for her to not have one of those.
5) I tried to use this for a while with Ellie because of her reflux but she hated it. I guess it's good in the end because I don't want her to be so accustomed to having certain things that we have to pack the whole house for her/Emme to spend the night somewhere.
6) I only have two.
7) I have one swaddle blanket (it's called the Swaddle Me) and two sleep sacks. I do have lots of receiving blankets but we didn't use those much.
8) I liked the Boppy.
9) We use a box fan in both girls' rooms.
S.S. answers from Kansas City on December 26, 2008
I understand where Stephanie is coming from with the SIDS issue, but I do recommend a sleep positioner because the baby needs to sleep on her back to reduce SIDS. I had a brother die from SIDS and I am extremely paranoid, and do tons of research. They have all different types of sleep positioners, the one I used with both of my girls was the - The First Years Air Flow Sleep Positioner by Learning Curve it's $11.99. I would also recommend the Angel Care Monitor, it has a motion board that goes under the mattress and if baby stops breathing for 20 seconds the alarm sounds. This was a HUGE life saver for me, I lost alot of sleep with my first until I got this !!! I would get a wedge for under the mattress to heep her elevated. Oh and a new thing to reduse SIDS is to keep an oscalating fan in her room to where the fan will blow air in her face, it keeps them alert ! I would be cautious about SIDS, but you have 2 things going for you, #1 she is your first biological child .... SIDS occurs more often in the 2nd child (I am not sure why), and #2 SIDS is more common in boys (I also dont understand that). SIDS is also more common in from age 2 - 4 months and in the winter months ! I hope I have helped ease your mind and didnt overwhelm you ! Congratulations on the new baby girl, and the two boys !!! I have 2 girls and they are a handful ;D
S.B. answers from St. Louis on December 26, 2008
Congrats on your new baby! As far as most of the things it really is a personal preference. I just had to make one comment. DO NOT GET A SLEEP POSITIONER!!! They increase the chances of SIDS despite what they claim. They are not endorsed by any SIDS organization. A close friend of mine had their baby die while in a sleep positioner because she rolled over and got wedged to where she was rebreathing her own air (A huge SIDS risk factor). For the crib/bassinet area you are correct in saying that you need a firm fitting sheet and I am glad to see you are interested in sleep sacks instead of blankets. (Another SIDS risk) I think it is important to remember that you will need at least one for the baby to wear, an extra in the drawer and one that could be in the laundry. Babies are known for having diapers leak, explode or spitting up all over themselves.
I am sorry if I seem over the top with all of my SIDS recommendations. My infant son died of SIDS May 1, 2008 and I use any opportunity to help educate people about safe sleep.
R.Y. answers from Wichita on December 26, 2008
Congrat on all of your new children!!! As a mom of 5, with the first I wanted all of it but by the end needed and used none but the breast pump. get the pump or look at it for bottle connections, usually standard and they usually come with 1 or 2 bottles. The most beneficial things for me were big square blankets, not the cheap recieving blankets from the store but 1-1.5 yard square cotton for summer and breastfeeding cover and flannel for winter. big square towels. these were standard new baby gifts my family members made for every new baby. the new car seats that have the 5 point harnesses hold the baby so much more securely so all the "extras" or positioning tools end up in the way.secure the straps around the baby and they don't slouch like in the old 3 point harness. The other extras that I couldn't live with out was a highchair (for later) and a bouncy seat with vibration (this I actually had for a baby I watched and loved it but my own children only had one that bounced. Good luck and don't bog yourself down with the "stuff", ask people for clothes in a wide range of sizes and seasons and diapers(they will get you nicer stuff than you will get yourself). buy the "stuff" for yourself as you feel you need it. You will be much happier with the item if you pick it out yourself for the need you have when you need it. you also find many other creative ways of doing the same thing with out spending a dime. oh I almost forgot, I really liked the covers for the carseat for my winter babies, they could peek out when it was safe and I could keep them covered to go in and out of the car and buildings, it also helped to contain the random blanket that helped cover the babe and i didn't loose so many in the wind. Steralizing bottles is not a necessary thing the guidelines are for clean, but not sterile anymore. but if you are really concerned, use the dishwasher it sterilizes, just be sure that any curdled milk is scrubbed out.
Any way enjoy your children this will be the most challenging adventure of your life but the most pleasing and rewarding. smile lots!!
K.K. answers from Springfield on December 26, 2008
Check into getting a Miracle Blanket, it is great for swaddeling and it is a good idea to have larger recieving blankets for this. I didn't use sleep sacks, and with the blankets get as many from the hospital as you can, my nurses said I could take everything but the clothes I believe and I took two blankets wrapped my baby in them when we left the hospital, and they are the best even if they aren't that "pretty" but I wish I had gotten the miracle blanket before he was 2 mos old as it was the best thing EVER! http://www.miracleblanket.com/
My newborn slept in the pack n play from the moment we returned from the hospital home until about 2 months old when we started co-sleeping, he still sleeps some in his pack n play.
we never used a sleep positioner with the baby.
I prefer the Boppy Pillow, it was just great!
Noise canceling, just having a fan in the room is a good idea, not only does it make a little sound but it helps reduce chances of SIDS.
Since I don't use a crib I can't help with the crib sheets question.
I personally only used the car seat, not any add on accessories. We used the carry type until we got to about 6-7 months old and then switched to a "leave in" type seat.
I use the medela Pump in Style and I bought some bottles to collect the milk in, they are not the same bottles I use for feeding. They make bags you can just "strap" on to pump into but I found it much more simple to use the bottles, I did by lansinoh bottles to collect milk into and they fit the pump just fine but they are not "regular" bottles if that makes sense.
My LO never did pacifiers and has only had bottles with the baby sitter, I have BF only, so any bottle cleaning has been the caregivers responsibility but I always boiled a pot of water and dipped the nipples, and rings, and bottles in the water with tongs for sterilization, but if I had a dishwasher I would just wash them in that as that steralizes just as well.