Baby registry input

3 September 2015

One of my September goals is to start our baby registry, and I think we’re going to tackle it this weekend! The plan is to use a universal service like MyRegistry, Babylist, or Amazon (we used Amazon for our wedding registry) so we can add things from places like West Elm, The Land of Nod, or Etsy. We’ve already had a preliminary outing to look at strollers, but there are lots of other things we’d like to touch and feel, so research trips to Target and/or Buy Buy Baby are part of this weekend’s game plan.


20 weeks!

Other preparations? I have about a bajillion (that’s an approximation) registry guides pinned (here, here, here, here, and here to start). We took a guided tour through the baby section of Target with our new parent friends. We’ve watched other friends and siblings use, complain about, and praise everything from wraps to high chairs for several years.

We’ve got some good background, but before we head out, I would love to turn to y’all for any advice you might like to offer, too! If you could recommend just three products for our registry, what would they be? Or, if you’ve used one of the registries we’re considering (Babylist, Amazon, MyRegistry), would you recommend it? I know not all of my readers are in the parenting stage (my impression is about half of you are!), so even if your glowing recommendation comes secondhand (maybe from something your sister-in-law raves about), that’s okay with me. Can’t wait to hear from you, and wish us luck!!

Affiliate links are used in this post!

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
September 3, 2015 8:22 am

Congratulations! I’ve loved following your blog since I stumbled across it a few years ago! I got married around the same time as you and John and now have a 2 month old. My 3 must haves (for the first two months since that’s all I know) are the Baby K’tan Breeze, My Brest Friend nursing pillow, and SwaddleMe Velcro swaddles. Good luck!

September 3, 2015 8:52 am

Hi Em!

Will you share the registry so others can learn from yours?

Have you heard of crickets circle? They have a great blog. The concept is they choose three products in each category to simplify the registry process. Not saying you should use it but a good starting place for recommendations – because they stand behind their choices and they are well-vetted.

Good luck!


September 3, 2015 9:55 am

So exciting! I have a 2 year old and another due any day. My top 3 recs are the 4Moms MamaRoo, the Miracle Blanket swaddle, and BOB stroller. Good luck!

September 3, 2015 10:04 am

Emily, I don’t have any advice for you since I don’t have a baby and my sister-in-law lives in another country where things are most likely a lot different than in the US. BUT I just wanted to say that it’s really sweet of you to also include your readers who are not in the baby stage ;-)

Victoria B
September 3, 2015 10:26 am

I do not have kids, but I have heard the recommendation to not buy those baby bouncers and stuff until after the baby is here. They can be pretty expensive and every baby is different, so she may not like it. The person who recommended that said that you can rent or borrow one or two to test it out before taking that plunge. I thought that was pretty good advice that I would keep in mind if and when it is ever my turn. And that could be applied to most things, except of course car seats!

September 3, 2015 11:27 am

So fun! I don’t have a baby yet (due in 1 month!), but I did a lot of registry research. I ended up registering at both Amazon and Babies R Us. Amazon was great to add a broad range of items and appealed to my friends that are my age, and Babies R Us was great to walk around in and for our parents’ age friends to buy from at the brick and mortar store or online. Good luck, so excited for you!

September 3, 2015 12:36 pm

I have a 20 month old and have been asked by many moms-to-be about registry recommendations. If I had to pick 3 items, I would say the BOB stroller, the Fisher-Price Rock N’ Play and Aden and Anais brand muslin swaddle blankets (multi-purpose use for swaddling, burp cloths, and blankets in those first months). And to throw in a 4th, get the Ergo baby carrier and/or Moby wrap for getting things done around the house while baby-wearing. :) Let me know if want other recommendations, I have tons! Also, we used an Amazon baby registry and it was awesome – highly recommended. Congratulations and good luck!

September 3, 2015 1:22 pm

I did a ton of researching/asking friends, too. Our registries are with BBB & Amazon–I started babylist, but Amazon does the same thing and you get sign up for their diaper club, something I will be considering along with cloth diapering. Most folks recommend the MamaRoo–(definitely scope ebay! my dad got us ours for less than $200, brand new, 2015!), swaddles (Aiden & Anais, however my MIL made tons for me with an organic muslin cotton, same thing.) and the Miracle Blanket/Swaddle. I’ve heard to get just 1 of several types of bottles–you never know what your baby will like/take. Insurance can help with breast pumps–but don’t invest until you know it’s going to work. Though, it is best to buy new. Maybe rent/borrow at first and then get the Madela. I added a bunch of fun stuff to my registry-bath toys/the red wagon/cute outfits/wayyy too many clothes but in all sizes to hopefully cover the first year, and also for me to go back and remember what I liked so if down the line I need to do some shopping, it’s all in one place…I don’t know if all the things on my registry are necessary, but it was fun!! I also overdid it on the registry so there are tons of price points and you get a discount if it’s listed on your registry with Buy Buy Baby, so if we get giftcards or need to return stuff we don’t need, we can get what we do need. A lot of our family will want to shop in person, so we did BBB and they were actually fairly helpful in explaining some of the gear. Our stroller is probably the biggest ticket item, but we fell in love with the Uppababy Vista for several reasons- 1-the maneuverability 2- the storage 3- the all-terrain aspect- we don’t run, so we don’t need a bob, but we do like trails and neighborhood walks/jogs and the wheels work with that, on a beach, and for shopping around/errands 4- it will expand down the road with our family and 5-my favorite thing-I love the facing options. The only other stroller I may get will be a cheap and easy umbrella stroller as she gets a little older. Check out Magnificent baby gowns!! I gave these as gifts, as we sold them where I worked in TX and everyone raves! They are on amazon ;) And they use Activity Mats pretty early on, so that’s the first “toy” you really kind of need, and a boppy with no hole are great to have early on, too. We’re hoping to set up a changing station downstairs and upstairs, so using a caddy for downstairs felt essential–also having duplicates of some stuff in each place is convenient, in addition to having duplicates for your diaper bag, too so you’re not out without a paci or lovey, etc. and having to remember to pack it up each time. I hear sound machines are awesome! And I was surprised at all the car gear at BBB-window shield, toy bin/organizers, etc. I just went ahead and added it all to my list. Things I would not have otherwise thought about!

September 3, 2015 3:09 pm

My favorite baby site for gear is the Wise Baby, their real mom features are the best! My favorite baby items are probably the Graco Little Lounger (similar to a rock-n-play), the Dohm sound machine (but I love our Sleep Sheep just as much), and the Britax car seat and stroller travel system (the B-Agile). And Aden + Anais swaddle blankets are the best!!

September 3, 2015 4:28 pm

We did not buy a ton of things for our little one before he was here. However, I do regret not getting a few things and we ended up scrambling to get them after he arrived.

My recommendations:
– some sort of baby swaddle with velcro, but not the generic blanket kind. You will be too tired to figure it out and your baby will not stop moving. ; ) We used the Summer Infant SwaddleMe Adjustable Infant Wrap.
– Baby Swing – We bought the Fisher-Price My Little Lamb Cradle Baby Swing. This was a life saver and we bought it after our son was born. It was the only way I could ever eat lunch. I never let him sleep in it unattended because of safety reasons, but it was perfect if he was in the room with me. Seriously a life saver!!!!
– Car Seat: Britax B Safe, works well in mid size and smaller sedans and fits perfectly with the Britax B-Agile which is my third recommendation. My son is almost two and we still use the stroller regularly. It is very compact and folds with one hand which is really hard to do with some strollers while you are carrying the baby. They also have a nice color selection and the price is more mid-range.
– Ergo Baby Carrier with infant insert – the only way I could grocery shop with baby. This took a while to get used to, but once I watched a few videos on youtube it made perfect sense.
– Leachco Podster Sling-Style Infant Seat Lounger (Purchased on Amazon). We used this until my son turned about 19 months. He just outgrew it and he is in the 95th percentile for height and weight. It was great for putting him on the sofa with us and good for propping him up when we started bottle feeding.

The one thing we never ended up buying is a nursery glider and I completely regret it. We are expecting baby no. 2 and I will be buying a glider. You will spend so much time nursing/feeding and correct posture is so important. I found it very difficult to nurse sitting on my living room sofa or in my bed. Both spots were too soft and I had to use a million pillows to get in the right position, which again is hard to do with a wriggly baby and you are sleep deprived.

Good luck!!! Shopping for baby is so fun.

Kara M.
September 3, 2015 9:16 pm

I used the book Baby Bargains to make most of my registry. I highly recommend it! I would put an infant car seat with 2 bases on the registry. We had the Chicco keyfit 30. I loved it, but she was out of the seat by 20 lbs, so the 30 wasn’t really necessary. I also loved our BOB Revolution stroller. I would also put a few things on the registry for when the baby is a little older and there won’t be as many gifts!

September 3, 2015 10:41 pm

Check out!! She breaks EVERYTHING completely down and gives wonderful recs!!

September 4, 2015 10:58 am

We’re also in the same boat (due on Halloween!) and found the amount of information available to be completely overwhelming. I wanted to use Babylist but thought our not-super-tech savvy relatives would struggle with the “reserving” process, and that Amazon’s Universal Registry option functioned closely enough that it would work ok (and it seems like it has, so far). We also set up a much smaller registry at Target because we have some older relatives who don’t shop online.

I can’t recommend any products yet, but the Aden & Anais blankets have also been highly recommended to me. I also found Lucie’s List to be a great resource!

September 4, 2015 12:22 pm

Oh! I saw, too, that one of your registry reviews included the Kate Spade Stevie (no longer in production) diaper bag– found mine at Nordstrom Rack and they carry them on amazon as well. At first I was going to go with a Timi and Leslie vegan leather(—hannah-pastel-collection.aspx) in a brushed metallic because it does look just like a great purse-my best friend has this and has used it for years. It’s great, but it sold out and was only available in Canada! But, as it turns out that was for the best because the Kate Spade is SO lightweight in comparison. Highly recommend!

September 4, 2015 1:40 pm

I highly recommend the Aden & Anais swaddle blankets – they’re a little spendier than some other baby blankets, but we use them for *everything*! They’re perfect swaddles (of course), nursing covers, carseat covers, play mat sheets, the list goes on… And my almost three-year-old still sleeps with his at night as a security blankie. I’d also recommend baby-wearing options that you and your husband both like. We had the Baby Bjorn (for him) and the Baby K’Tan (for me). And my gift to all new mommas – the Sleep Sheep. We haven’t needed it for Baby #2, but it was a real blessing with our first little guy!

September 5, 2015 8:24 am

Hi, Emily! First: congratulations to you and John (and the whole family)! Our baby boy is almost three months old, and a few pieces of baby gear have been so helpful. I think our top three are the Rock ‘n Play (we got ours from Craigslist), the baby carriers (a K’Tan for me and Ergo for Josh – I knew the carriers would be practical for us but didn’t realize how comforting they are for baby) and the Aden & Anais swaddle blankets. Like other commenters, we use those blankets for everything and also love the Aden & Anais Dream and stroller blankets, too.

September 6, 2015 1:02 pm

We chose Amazon for the universal registry option, family knows it well, AND they have a completion discount where you can purchase the remaining items off your list for a 10% – 15% discount (higher if you are prime member which we are). Only catch is fine print does specify discount applies to one purchase only. So you have to be prepared to buy everything all at once. We’re just holding on to all our gift cards until the end so we can use discount and gift cards in one go.

I found baby gear lab really helpful in narrowing down some choices.

September 6, 2015 5:09 pm

The three things I’ve used the most are, a swing (Graco Glider DLX), baby carrier (Baby Bjorn Orginal), and our folding tub ( Boon Naked). We need a lot of space saving stuff, so most of what we got has as small a footprint as possible.
A piece of advice I wish I had gotten is to fold any stroller you’re looking at, and see if it will fit in your trunk. I registered for a travel system, and the stroller didn’t fit, but we were already using the car seat, so I had to get another one, and it’s what I wish I had from the start (Graco Breeze)! The car seat clips in like the travel system, but it folds to be only a little larger than an umbrella stroller. I seriously love it!! I wish I had gotten a co-sleeper, because she sleeps better near me since day 1, and as a result, now she’s just sleeps in the bed with us, which I love, but if I had her in a co-sleeper, I bet she’d be fine, and I’d have more room!

September 7, 2015 7:11 am

Bob stroller since you and John love the outdoors, Diaper Genie Elite is a must if you are using disposables, and I like the Mamaroo so far. Also, I loved our Amazon baby registry and have been exceedingly grateful for loaned items from friends this time around (larger items like regular strollers, Ergo carrier, bath tub, baby swing and boppy pillows are all loaners for us this time). If you need a Bob to borrow, we may have one! So excited for y’all!

September 8, 2015 3:02 pm

If their is any remote possibility you are having two or more children, I advise you to think smart about the strollers. Why invest in a super $$$ single stroller only to have a second or third child later and have to spend $$$ again? I got the baby jogger city select and I am in love. My husband calls it the Optimus Prime stroller because of all it’s configurations! And now with #2 on the way, all I need is a $150 extra seat (instead of a $400+++ double stroller). And when we go for #3 I can get a scooter attachment! Even if you register online I would go to a store and push/fold/lift strollers.

In regards to baby bottles, decide what you are using and stick with it. I think comments regarding babies not liking certain bottles are a little silly. A hospital nicu or pediatric unit has only 2 kinds of nipples: regular nipples and those for kids with cleft/palate issues. And think of all the kids hospitals take care of….the babies do just fine. Plenty of other things to think about then which baby bottle your little one likes best.

PS. Also loved Lucie’s List, and in general amazon reviews.

September 9, 2015 10:16 am

Everyone swears by something different, and you’ll probably find products that work best for you and your babe, but here are my favorites (my little one is six months):

-A baby wrap: I was working with Samantha and Graham on their stationery when I was pregnant and Samantha emailed me about a baby wrap. I registered and got the simple Boba wrap. It’s so simple, like a fifth of the price of carriers, and is invaluable. I don’t think the brand matters, though, as they’re all so similar. I tell my pregnant friends it’s the only thing they need-ha!

-aden + anais BAMBOO swaddles: they are so soft! I have the Diwali style but they’re all so soft. Skip the cheaper aden + anais line at Target. The bamboo ones are so much better. Key word on the box: bamboo. :)

-Fisher-Price Newborn Rock-n-Play Sleeper: this thing is so ugly that I’m embarrassed to admit how much we love it. We have it in pink and it was where my daughter preferred to sleep for months and it folds flat so we took it to friends’ houses for dinner parties, outdoor movies, etc. The fabric part is so easy to remove and clean, too.

Other random suggestions: don’t get caught up on a designer stroller. Pick one based on the wheels and storage space under the seat. Also, you can’t have enough burp cloths.

September 11, 2015 9:30 am

Visiting the baby aisle with friends/new parents is absolutely the way to go. For us it broke the ice and made it less overwhelming when going to the store for the real thing. My only hesitation with an amazon list is the return policy. What is it like, especially if there is no gift receipt? We did Babies R Us and they were great about returns, especially if they were on our registry but we didn’t have a receipt. Something to consider.

September 12, 2015 9:24 am

Babylist is AMAZING. It’s so easy! You can add stuff easily from a browser with a bookmarklet button similar to Pinterest, you can add things straight from the app on your phone, and their customer service is great. They sent me 100 insert cards for our shower invites and they’re totally free! I originally asked for 75 but then messed up 25 of them while assembling the invites, so they quickly shipped me 25 more after I frantically emailed them. Plus, I love how they partner with small, handmade shops to promote them. Highly, highly recommend. And our friends and families said they really loved being able to buy stuff online and get us exactly what we want! Oh, and also, we’ve been able to easily return things to Amazon and elsewhere. We didn’t have receipts for anything, but all the major baby stores take returns for store credit without a receipt, and Amazon is wonderful about accepting returns as long as you have the email address of the person who purchased it (which Babylist provides). Anyway, just my two cents!! I can’t rave about it enough. And congrats again!! After I got over the initial self-consciousness, registering and picking out things for our sweet babe was my favorite!!

October 5, 2015 5:09 pm

I’m seeing this kind of late, but the three things I recommend are: a Moby wrap or some sort of infant carrier (we used it until our baby was 4 months-ish), an Ergo carrier for when baby is a little bit bigger (the Moby could have worked, but it just got easier to not have to wrap him), and a double breast pump (I used the Medela Pump in Style, and it ended up being covered by my insurance). I went back to work part-time, so this was essential to keep breastfeeding. Honorable mention: my Graco travel system. This was so helpful when our son would fall asleep in his carseat and we didn’t want to wake him up! Babies don’t need a lot though! Prayers and best wishes!