One of the first tasks that you will have as a parent, is to purchase clothes, toys, and essentials for your baby. Obviously you will want to shower them with love and attention too, but at the end of the day, they are 100% reliant on you for all of their needs, which can be an intimidating and scary realization for some. This may seem pretty obvious, but you wouldn’t believe how many parents take for granted just how important it is to get a walking start when it comes to taking care of your newborn, and improper handling during the early stages of their lives can set them back for a life time. Not trying to scare you, but it’s true!
A Head Start: We are influencing our children all of the time. Heck, even when we aren’t actively influencing them, we are influencing them, and it is up to use to give them a strong foundation of moral, emotional, intellectual, and physical framework from which to grow from. We’ve heard worst case scenarios of parents who haven’t done this, they are called feral children, or you just have kids who are poorly behaved and develop tons of severe social problems. On the other end, are prodigies and children with a good base to work from, it’s up to us whether we want to give our little ones an upward spiral, or a downward spiral from which to work from.
Help Yourself for Later: If you aren’t lazy with your efforts early on, you can really save yourself a ton of trouble later. Purchasing baby products which engage your children, help with memory retention, enable them to walk, and provide them with good nutrition and care, can really pave the way for them to be self-sufficient. Once they hit this stage, you become more of a chaperon than a caregiver, and a lot of potential stress will be avoided.
Safety: A parent’s worst nightmare is to hear that something has happened to their little one, and it was a problem that could have been avoided. No matter what, priority numero uno is to create a safe and nurturing environment, so every toy, article of clothing, of piece of food that goes into your newborn’s mouth, has to be safe.
Baby Products That You Can’t Live Without
No doubt, with enough friends and family around, you will have no shortage of help or pointers when it comes to what to purchase. Hey, heed the advice of those who have walked before you, but just in case you need a few ideas, here are some items that you absolutely have to have to make your life easier!
A Stroller: You’ll need at least some form of transportation no matter what lifestyle or budget that you are on. Today, baby carriers are extremely popular, and they do make a lot of simpler tasks easier, but there really is no substitute for a nice stroller that you can leave your little one in. Strollers can be easy to transport and store, are usually very versatile with some carrying space on them for bottles and car keys, and give your child some place to sit when they are tired.
Carryall: Carryall’s are like the swiss army knife of baby products, and can be a huge money saver. There are some strollers which are called travel systems, allowing you to morph a stroller into a car seat, then into a mock carriage. The key is to purchase one that adjusts easily, as some cheaper models can be cumbersome to adapt into the proper position.
Bassinet: As tempting as it might be to snuggle with your newborn, you’ll need some place to keep them at night, and they’ll have to get use to being by themselves.
Toys: Pick a few fluffy, choking hazard free toys for your new born, and then let them choose which they like. These can be very cheap. In my experience, blankets(or “blankies”) are ideal as they can cover them up.
Bouncers/Walkers/Activitiy Centers: As soon as they are old enough, our young ones will begin to mimic us and our interactions. This includes bouncing, walking, talking(babbling), and plenty of other incoherent nonsense that only they understand. It is essential that we foster an environment that they can refine these skills, it’s the difference between a fully potty trained two year old who can feed themselves, and a six year old wearing diapers. Yes, if your lax with this stuff it is going to hurt their development, your also making life a heck of a lot easier on yourself by training them early.
Top 5 Brands
Fisher-Price: The first really big toy making company, Fisher Price was one of those baby boomer brands that really took off after World War II. Fisher Price prides themselves on creating toys that are durable, cheap, interactive, and create some kind of intrinsic value that facilitates learning.
Graco: Founded in the middle of the 20th century, Graco is a renown American based company which has created many mechanical baby products, including the first company to push forward the travel system. Although it has gotten a bad rap in recent years for faulty products, Graco continues to be an industry leader in strollers, car seats, and automated swings.
Britax: Britax is an industry leading provider in childcare transportation and utility products, including high chairs, car seats, and strollers. The British answer to Graco, the company was originally founded in 1938, and now has over 180 patents. Britax prides itself on cutting edge innovation and progressing the industry as a whole with new safety features.
Avent: A British based company, Avent was originally just a baby bottle making company. In the last few decades however, Avent has led its collective market in innovation and has done a ton of progressive work for mothers in general. Some of their early work included changing the design of bottles to prevent infant choking and gas issues, developing more natural teats and nipple attachments for bottles, and the creating of more effective breast pumps.
Gerber: Founded in 1927, Gerber is the premiere baby food provider in the United States, and produces more than 190 products in at least 80 countries world wide. So massive and popular is Gerber, that they control over 80 percent of all baby food profits in the U.S. and across the world.
How to Buy Gear on a Budget
Look, purchasing proper necessities for your baby at one point might have seemed like a pretty cheap venture to the ill-informed. After all, they eat less than, and use less than us adults. However as new parents often have found out, once you tally up all of the expenses, what you shell out for your newborn for the first four years of their lives will far exceed that of what you need in order to support a fully grown adult. Between the diapers, toys, cribs, car seats, and doctor bills, you are going to be shelling out a ton of money, and that says nothing about the time investment needed.
Don’t Buy What You Don’t Need: The first step to buying on a budget, is to cut off all of the fat. Do not buy what you do not need, plain and simple. Throughout this site, you are going to be bombarded with a lot of very cool features and some helpful items, such as baby and wipe warmers, interactive play yards and doll houses, and baby food processors. These are usually luxuries that most young parents on a paltry salary cannot afford.
Adding on to this, scaffold what you are shelling out into short waves. Its ok to save up for the future, but if you have a new born, why are you throwing down one hundred dollars for a cutesy walker? As tempting as it might be to grab everything at once, be patient, plus where are you going to store these items in the mean time?
Hand me Downs: Luckily for most of today’s well to do societies, tight niche social circles and family structures pave the way to make baby handling a lot easier. My grandma for instance, dropped a dump truck load of baby clothes and toys at my house, and insisted on seeing our little one for five days a week. Do not be too proud to use hand me downs, as others will be all too eager to make use of their short lived in baby products. As a last resort, yard sales and garage sales can also be an excellent resource to grab items at a fraction of the price you would pay in stores.
Coupons/Discounts: Some items you are going to have to purchase new. It pays to be thrifty, and for those who are particularly frugal, they can make a lot of headway by managing what they buy and when they buy it. Make a list of your favorite stores, and keep an eye out for sales through online emails, through the mail, or in the newspaper. Amazon often times has some ridiculous offers on quality brand name products.