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Guide to Setting up a Baby Registry

 

If you've just discovered that you are pregnant - it's a time for joy and congratulations. After all, you are about to have a baby, and there is plenty to celebrate. However, it's also a time for you to start planning the future for your little one, and that means setting up a baby registry.

If you're a first-time mom especially, you might get a bit overwhelmed when you see how many choices there are in stores and online when it comes to the baby department. There's no need to stress: Below we've listed some great tips for getting your baby registry started.

1. Finding where to register

First and foremost, you'll want to narrow down the store you'll want to register at. This is the biggest decision in the process, so not just any establishment will do. According to Parenting, you'll need to determine whether or not the store will assemble larger items like furniture and if you can manage your registry online. You will also need to inquire about their return policy to see if the store meets your needs - most return policies will give you 30 days.

"Select a store with nationwide locations and online access."

It's likely that you will invite out-of-town guests or have relatives/loved ones that may not be able to make the shower but still want to send a gift via mail. With this in mind, you might want to select a store with nationwide locations or is easy to order online, such as Target or Babies R Us.

2. Don't procrastinate

For the most part, expecting moms schedule their baby showers around a month to six weeks before their due date. You might think that is a long ways off if you are in your first trimester, but giving people plenty of time is the courteous thing to do for your guests. So, it is best to get your registry set up sooner rather than later.

3. Choose the must-haves first

There are some things that all moms will need for their new baby. Many moms find it helpful to create a checklist beforehand so nothing goes unnoticed. Here are a few baby registry essentials that must top the  list:

  • Mobile.
  • Diaper bag.
  • Pacifiers.
  • Crib, crib mattress and waterproof mattress pad.
  • Bassinet.
  • Changing table and pad.
  • Glider/rocker.
  • Car seat.
  • Diapers.
  • Breastfeeding essentials.
  • Feeding/nursing pillow.
  • Bottles/bottle cleaning essentials.
  • Burp cloths.
  • Wipes.
  • Onesies.
  • Diaper rash cream.
  • Bottle warmer.
  • High chair.
  • Breast pump and pumping accessories.
  • Nursing bras and clothes.
  • Diaper pail and liners. 
  • Baby shampoo and body wash.
  • Bathtime toys.
  • Baby socks and booties.
  • Baby outerwear (hats, mittens, coat).
  • Swaddling blankets.

There are many other entertainment options that you can also include in your list like toys, a play mat, books, a baby swing or jumper or a bouncer seat.

Likewise, you should also throw in a few safety and wellness essentials for your newborn, such as a digital thermometer, a baby toothbrush and teething toys, baby nail clippers, first-aid supplies and common baby medicines, safety gates, child-proofing gear for your home and a baby monitor.

According to Fit Pregnancy, you might want to avoid seasonal gifts or items on clearance, as they may not be available for purchase down the line when your guests are shopping. Gift sharing is another great idea for larger items that might be a bit more expensive, such as furniture or a stroller. 

Planning for your new baby's needs is important, but don't be afraid to add on some splurge items, too, such as cute headbands or bows, or a fancy hat.

4. What's next?

After you have determined your location and filled out your registry, go over everything you've selected and then revisit it a few weeks after to see if anything needs to be revised, added or deleted. Once the registry is complete, be sure to share this information with whomever is hosting your baby shower, and include the registry info on your shower invitations. And, don't forget to pick up thank you cards once you have everything all set.

Try shopping with your mom or a trusted friend who has planned a registry before - she could give you insight into gifts that you hadn't thought of before. And, lastly, have fun while shopping!

 

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