When people find out you’re having a baby people are more than happy to tell you everything you need to buy (and exactly how to be a parent).
Despite getting plenty of advice from pretty much every other parent I know before I had kids, there are some things that slipped through the cracks.
Here’s what doesn’t show up on the baby registry:
1. A good cordless vacuum. If vacuums had odometers ours would be approaching 100,000 miles at this point. It comes out multiple times a day to clean up after meals, snacks, and outdoor playtime. We’ve gone through a couple of different vacuums to find the right one.
The Bissell Multi Reach is the best one we’ve found. It’s got everything you need to clean up after the kids: it’s light, cordless, powerful, and has the ability to change into a handheld to get rid of all the Cheerios and Goldfish crumbs on the couch.
2. A good dishwasher and washer/dryer combo. I’m not sure there’s a day that goes by where we don’t run at least one load of wash and/or dishes. This is one of those areas in life where it makes sense to pay up for quality and don’t skimp.
3. Comfortable sweatpants. Comfort is a must when you have little kids. You’re constantly on your hands and knees either changing diapers or playing on the floor or grabbing toys your kids chucked under the couch and such.
I love the Mack Weldon sweats because they’re comfy enough to wear around the house but stylish enough to wear out and about (because when you have babies you’re always running to the store for things you forgot you needed). My wife opts for Lululemon.
4. Multiple pizza cutters. Gillette has a razor with 5 blades so why can’t I find a pizza cutter with multiple blades for cutting up quesadillas, grilled cheese sandwiches, and PB&Js?
Always have an extra pizza cutter or 3 because one of them will always be dirty from the last use since little kids always need their food cut up.
5. Portable chairs. With our first daughter we discovered high chairs are a giant pain in the rear end to deal with. They take up too much room and always seem to be in the way.
With our twins we decided to try the Inglesina Fast Table Chair. They’re portable, can attach to either tables or countertops, and fold up to bring with you for use at restaurants or a friend’s house.
And because they go on and off so easily, you can even put them away when you have company over so your house isn’t completely overcome with baby stuff at all times.
6. Mr. Clean Magic Erasers. Kids are messy. They love touching the walls with their greasy little hands. Then when they get older they move onto markers and begin drawing on everything.
These things work wonders cleaning up the walls. Add them to your Amazon Subscribe & Save list and thank me later.
7. Kindle Paperwhite (or another e-reader). When you have a newborn there is a surprising amount of downtime for scheduled feedings, naps, and nighttime activities.
You need some form of quiet entertainment that doesn’t put off a lot of light or noise while trying to feed and sleep train a baby. I got a lot of reading done on my Kindle during the 3 am bottles trying to rock my kids to sleep as newborns.
Your Biggest Expense as a New Parent