The pregnancy shopping list

Every mum remembers being pregnant, puzzled, clueless and confused. It was so unclear what to buy and in what quantities. When, after 20 weeks, the first part of nausea and sickness had passed I sat down and created a pregnancy shopping list to keep track. (this is a LONG post).

With a detailed pregnancy shopping list in my hand (on my laptop) I was finally able to tell family and friends what we need when they offered gifts. Since then, this list have served a couple of my friends. They all found it helpful, so I figured it should go on the blog.

The pregnancy shopping list is divided into sections. You can download the pictures to be printed and stick to the fridge or put in your wallet.

There is no list that will make everybody happy. This one is very basic. Of course, one can argue you don’t really need a changing table or a carrier/sling. Yes, if you’re very stubborn you won’t need any of these things except for few pieces of clothing and diapers (btw diapers are so obvious they are not even listed).

Let me walk you through.

You don’t really need any other equipment. The biggest challenge is the pram – it took me few months to pick the right one. Then comes the mattress saga. My research told me to buy a latex mattress not all natural coco buckwheat things as they like to grow mold. Yack. When buying the car seat check if it’s compatible with your car and pram.

You really don’t want to fight the mattress protectors, and I advise you buy the fitted ones. A leaked diaper, a bit of vomit here and there and you’re headed to the shop for a new mattress. The mobile is not a must but babies like them (on the condition they can actually see them as most mobiles are designed for parents to look t not the baby). If you’re overprotective (like me) you’ll want a baby monitor with movement/breath control or even a camera – there is something for every need (and wallet). Sleeping bags, swaddling blankets and other baby-covering-devices are very risky: your baby will either love them or hate them.

When it comes to choosing a bath it may be as overwhelming as with the stroller. Choose a bath with a support (baby can lie on her own) and a plug. Or a bathing bucket, anyone? Take care of your back – choose a bath with a stand or another solution that makes it easy to use. Any towel will dry the baby but those with hoods make it easy to keep your baby warm.

Saline bullets were my most used product: to clean the nose and eyes daily, when travelling. I always kept few in the diaper bag, too. When it comes to nasal aspirator a bulb is not as safe as an actual aspirator. And it’s really not that gross, it is not possible to swallow the snots, I promise. For a newborn you’ll want a thermometer with flexible ending to the rectal temperature (most accurate), I also use an ear thermometer. That leaves us with meds: with newborn and small babies you won’t use them without consulting a health-care professional but have them on hand in case they tell you to use it quickly.

Oh, crap. I forgot the socks. Add socks. The tricky part of this section are the sizes… I bought everything in 54 cm, my daughter was born being 50 cm and everything was huge on her. But what if I bought all 50 cm and she was born being a 56 cm baby? Buy a bit of each size. Buy all sets for few months ahead. You have no idea how these first weeks going to be, babies grow FAST, better be prepared.

Only 3 first things are important to have. All the rest can easily be bought later (e.g. teether, bibs) or never (silver nipple shields aka silver nursing cups – although they saved me big time!). Diaper bag should be on that list, too – or should it appear under “basics”?

You probably already have few of the things listed. Never underestimate the wisdom of people who designed maternity and nursing bras. Pregnancy pillow will make life much easier, it is a non-disputable must have. Kamilosan (the concentrate) you want to have straight after birth to make the healing quicker.

“What to Expect” is good. Tracy Hogg is not a god. “My child won’t eat” is a book every parent should read. While reading “Battle hymn of the tiger mother” keep your distance, it’s an interesting good read. If you like travelling “French children don’t throw food” is a fascinating trip to France – it’s not a book advising how to parent although if you like you can draw few lessons of it. And before you ask, black and white board books for kids are amazing. The contrast makes it easy for newborns and small babies to look at, we had one on the changing table always and I would tell Z stories about each pictured objects.

There is one part I couldn’t make – the bottle feeding. I simply have no idea how many bottles and other gadgets you should have if you plan to bottle feed (either breast milk or formula). I will be very grateful for your help in making such a list – what is the satisfying minimum, what can easily be omitted? Please leave your comment below.

I am very curious on what your take on buying is. And remember this is not the list for the whole first year or first six months. I only listed things that are worth having when the baby is born. Have I forgotten anything?

Happy shopping!