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List of baby essentials--sustainability + affordability

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Nourishing life

Postby Literatriz » Fri Jan 09, 2009 4:20 pm

Hi all,
thank you Esperanza for starting this thread. I need to learn a lot about modern ways of taking care of newborns and going green requires a lot of effort and commitment. Thank each one for posting suggestions - it saves us time and give us hope for this planet. The economic crisis make it more fashionable and even patriotic to reuse/recycle/preserve. And our babies will start life liberated from the pressure to buy and discharge without thinking about the conectedness of all living things on this Planet.
I have a question about buying second-hand cribs: what is the current distance between the posts in the crib? I know that they changed the safety rules a few years ago but I am not sure.
Best, best wishes, Literatriz
me 50, dh 54
2 BFN after IVF in Brazil
1 BFP after IVF in Brazil (Clinic Origen, thanks!)

Three little girls born February 27th!!!
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Postby lynniecat » Sat Jan 10, 2009 6:55 am

I love this thread but I am wondering if we can start a list of essentials.

Obviously we need:

Crib
Sheets
mattress
Diapers/disposables or cloth
Pack and Play (whatever that is) -- can that be a crib too?
Car seat
Stroller (maybe this incorporate the car seat??? dunno)
Is a glider essential??? I know a lot of people get one, but do people use it?



What else? Anyone??? I know so little at this point!
Me: 44 severely reduced reserve
DH: 44 perfect
IVF 1: Feb 08 -BFP twins (lost one at 7 weeks, one at 13 weeks) :-(
IVF 2: June 08 -BFN :-(
IVF 3: September 08 -BFN :-(
IVF 4: November 08 - Katherine Emma born 8/9/2009 :D
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Postby JamieP » Sat Jan 10, 2009 3:07 pm

I never used a glider. I do highly recommend a car seat that also clips onto the stroller - makes life so much easier to transfer the baby without waking them. I also think if you are tall (as I am) a changing table helps your back out!! It can be a long down to the floor or the bed when you are changing 10 diapers a day. Ikea has great cheap ones and I am sure they are the things you can get cheaply second hand. I know some people set them up on top of dressers they already have which also works well.

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Postby CT_Michele » Sat Jan 10, 2009 4:07 pm

Lynnie- Good idea, to start the list, I will respond with my opinion for each

crib- Obviously an essential. I go a convertible one that will convert to a toddler bed and then a full size bed with optional rails I have to purchase. It wasn't the cheapest crib ($350-$400) but I figure worth it because it will be used for many many years and quality is pretty good.

sheets- again a necessity. I have 4 sheets I think, which seems to be sufficient. One came with the bedding set, which I reccomend against, only b/c it was so expensive only to find out the quilt and bumper (the 2 most epensive parts of the set) aren't even supposed to be used because of sids and suffocation. The bumper looked pretty while Ella slept in a bassinet in my room, but as soon as she moved to the crib, I had to take it off. I ended up having to get a mesh/breathable bumper b/c she was putting her arms and legs through the rails. If I could do it over again, I would find a bed set I like, buy the sheets and valance seperately and decorate around it.

mattress- I did not buy the cheapest one, even though I was tempted. I only spent more b/c they had one mattress that served a dual purpose, one side was very firm for infants, and the other side softer for toddlers. I never knew there were 2 different types, an infant and toddler mattress, I wonder if people switch them?

Diapers- I use disposable, but get the huge boxes at sams club to save money

Pack n play- even though she is still not really old enough to play, I love my pack n play strictly for the purpose of an extra changing station. I have it downstairs and it have a heightened changing station (good for moms back) so I can change her downstairs instead of always going upstairs. I guess you could use these as cribs, but probably not good all the time, it doesn't really have a mattress for support, but it is definitely good for portablility and travel in case you go to grandmas and need a sleeping or playing place.

Car seat/stroller- one of the best purchases I made. My infant car seat does attach to the stroller, which is a jogging stroller. It is all made by babytrendz, which I think is a babies r us brand. It was the only jogging stroller I could find that had an infant seat that attached. I am not a jogger and will never run with it, but the wheels on joggers are so much better, they move so easily. We have a base for the seat in each car which we had installed by our police department for free, and we can easily snap the seat into either car and then remove it without disturbing her and put it in the stroller. I also get so many compliments on the stroller, people think it was ridiculously expensive, but it was not. Actually much cheaper than other ones that were there!

Also, I read somewhere, never buy car seats used, since the safety updates are so frequent and you never know what happened to one that is not knew, like of someone dropped it which could cause it to not function properly.

Ah, The glider- I thought I ould never use one but wanted one since everyone with a baby has one. BUt I refused to pay the baby store $400 or more for something like that. So I ordered one on walmart.com for in store pickup so I didn;t have to pay shipping. It was by storkcraft and came in a variety of wood colors and cushion colors. Many people said it was not comfy online, but I find it fine and I am a heavier person. It was $150 for the glider with the ottoman. I definitely am glad I bought it because I used it for all of my nighttime feedings and for rocking her when she needed to be. Sure I could have stood up and swayed her back and forth, but the glider made it so easy, and it is nice enough to put someplace else in my house when it is done in her room. One time it started squeaking, but was fixed with wd-40, never squeaked again.

Ok, my opinions on those items...go ahead, ask me about more and I can try to help. I did a lot of research and bargain hunting once I found the items I knew I wanted. I read lots of reviews and checked all recalls and such, so I was informed. I hope this helps.
Me- 28 DH- 33 Male Factor
1st IVF- 12/07- BFP! Ella Michele was born 8/26/8
2nd IVF- 04/09 - BFN
1st FET- 09/09 - Chemical
3rd IVF - 04/11 - Embies didn't make it to ET
4th IVF - Fall 2011??
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Postby esperanza » Sat Jan 10, 2009 6:32 pm

Thank you for such valuable information friends. This is great! keep it coming. One of my professors just offered a crib, so I guess we'll be recycling and saving in that regard. I think we might buy a new mattress.


Literatriz-- I don't know what the regulations about the distance betwen posts, but I know my professor told me that her son's crib (the one she's giving us) is "up to date" with all the regulations.


JamieP -- thank you for the info on the diapers, I've been debating in my head between cloth diapers and disposable ones, but after reading your note, I think I'm more set on cloth ones as well. I think I might have a few disposable ones for long trips, and every now and then "special" occasions when it might be more convinient. One question, what specific brand or system do you use? is there a website or store in particular you use? I'd love to hear more of your "rant" hehehehhe :lol:


To add to the list:

Bottles (glass preferable?)
Baby's Bath tub (is this the right name?)


Question: I'm planning on breast feeding, what's your opinion/knowledge on breast pumps? I barely know anything about those. I know I will need to pump milk because I go to school and work part time, so I know that dh will have to stay with the baby for a few hours at a time. Thankfully we are both in academia so we can "play" with our schedules.
me: 33 dh: 40
2 miscarriages (natural pregs. #1 Aug 2006, #2 May 2010)
IVF # 1 jan 08 BFN
FET #1 March 08 BFN
FET #2 July 08 BFP (DD born on April 2009)
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Postby babyloves » Sat Jan 10, 2009 6:36 pm

CT michelle: what brand of pack and play did u get? i think those seem really worth it as you can work in the kitchen and have an extra changing/sleeping station instead on putting them on the floor...i'm having twins so i need one that's bigger...

i already have a glider and it seems to rock them to sleep while i'm still pg. CT michelle is right tho' - you can get a cheaper one online, i got mine from target at $260 since i needed an espresso one to match the other furniture.

about bumpers in the crib..i don't really believe that a bumper can cause sids...i know the pediatric academy says otherwise...what if they bump their heads...i think covering the babies with extra blankets and stuff sounds dangerous...i've bought the crib set just because i feel i can use the blankets for going out, etc. There usually about $75...don't know how much sheets are separately
me 33 DH 34
TTC 4 yrs
unexplained, 3 failed IUI
7/7 IVF #1
7/18 ET - 2 embies
8/1 BFP!
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Postby CT_Michele » Sat Jan 10, 2009 7:43 pm

babyloves- My pack n play is graco, and it was the catalina design, because it matched my living room. It is a pretty big size, but I have never put 2 babies in it, so I don;t know about twins, but I do think it is on the larger size.

I also needed an espresso glider to match my furniture, and walmart had espresso too.

The whole bumper situation- I know in the old days, like my mom says, we all had bumpers and we all turned out just fine. I was scared enough to remove it and I was glad I did, only because she moved so much and a couple of times I found her with her face up against the rails. If the bumper had been there, I see how she could have suffocated, and honestly, I would rather her end up with a bump, which she never has yet. But I think its up to each person, if your baby is a mover, I say take it off. The sheets seperately were like less than $20 for a 2 pack, and I am sure you can find them cheaper online.

Esperanza- the items you asked about-

Bottles- I use playtex drop-ins. I love them but I don;t know about how environmentally friendly that is. Of course you reuse the bottles, but the liners are disposable. It was just better for us because of our busy lifestyles and no need to sterilize. Of course if you go with glass bottles, no bpa, but there are many plastic bottles now that are bpa free, such as the playtex ones I use, dr browns and avents.

Bathtub- I originally registered for a nice fancy tub, I got it and soon returned it before the baby was even born. It had this shower contraption on it for rinsing the baby, it was difficult to use and not made very well. I ended up getting just a regular tub that folds up for compact storage. It fits right in my sink and was less than $20. I also bought one of those nonslip baby sponges that are in the teddy bear shape, like $5 at target. I could use that in the sink, but I don;t trust the cleanliness of the ssink, so for now I use it as a pad on the counter for unchanging her for bath and drying for after, but when she moves to the big tub, I will use it there.

Ok ladies, keep em' coming!
Me- 28 DH- 33 Male Factor
1st IVF- 12/07- BFP! Ella Michele was born 8/26/8
2nd IVF- 04/09 - BFN
1st FET- 09/09 - Chemical
3rd IVF - 04/11 - Embies didn't make it to ET
4th IVF - Fall 2011??
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Postby wolffie » Sat Jan 10, 2009 8:39 pm

Esperanza -
Cloth Diapers - I use the BumGenius - Organic - All in one - one size diaper and LOVE it! Mydh loves it too, it is so easy. we also sued the fuzzi bunz pocket diapers when ds was a newborn. checkout www.diaperpin.com for reviews on different cloth diaper brands.
Disposable Diapers - we also use disposables when we are out or when ds is with the sitter. we use either seventh generation or nature baby care and both are good. the 7th gen seem to be a little off on the sizes. for example, the newborn seemed to big and then ds grew out of the size 1 very fast (before the suggested weight).
Bottles - i use the BornFree brand which is plastic and BPA free. Last year there weren't many BPA free plastic bottles out so we got these and we like them. they also have a valve system that i think really helps my ds. never had an issue with gas. there are lots of BPA free brands now. the BornFree are also recyclable but i think man plastic and glass brands are. i was told that the bottles only need to be sterilized prior to the first use. i jsut wash them by hand now or throw them in the dishwasher if the load is almost full.
Pump - I LOVE my medela pump in style. i exclusively breastfeed (my ds just began solids) and was home during his first 5 months. i just returned to work and use my pump about 3 times a day. LOVE it! if you are planning on freezing any milk i like the lanishnoh bags and the medela bottles. for breast pads i like the medela washable. i think the gerber washable pads are horrible.
Bathtub - I have the Eurobath tub and like it. It is a bit bigger than most baby tubs but i think my ds will fit better in it when he's a toddler. i got a ton of hooded baby towels at my showers and really don't think they are necessary. a regular towel works just fine!

Liberatiz -
In regards to the crib rails - i was told that a soda can should not be able to pass through the rail width.

glider - i have an okay one from target. it was on the less expensive side and i use it daily.
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Postby JamieP » Sun Jan 11, 2009 7:34 am

Forgot to say I use fuzzi buns and Mio diapers. I don't think you can get Mio in the US. And I do not use anything aside from white vinegar and regular washing powder to clean them. White vinegar is a great cleaning fluid for all sorts of things.

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Postby Rubylee » Sun Jan 11, 2009 5:42 pm

I am having twins any day now and just finished with buying/getting all the stuff. For sure if you can get things from friends, neighbors do so. We have been lucky enough to have received a lot of barely used items like bouncy seats, exercise jumpers, clothes, bumbo seats, etc. This is also a much more sustainable way to go, you're not buying new stuff to end up in a landfill some day.

I agree with the crib bedding packages. You don't need or want all that padding in the crib, just sheets now and a breathable bumper at about 3/4 months when they are starting to move around. If you can't afford the crib right away you can use a pack n' play for a few months. They will probably be sleeping all over the place anyway. I got the Graco one with the Noah's Ark theme and it was around $50. One of the cheaper ones but my friend who is on her third swears by it. Just set it up as a bassinet at first.

I have had several moms tell me the bouncy seat is a necessity. They are also not that expensive, you don't need a super fancy one.

On the breast pump, we have a local store that rents them. Buying one is pretty expensive, but if you rent you just have to buy new tubing and attachments which are cheap. Try looking into your local La Leche league to see if they have info on this. If you call Medela about it they will try to talk you out of it, saying it isn't safe (a huge $ loss for them obviously). Though hospitals and stores reuse/rent them all the time. I am lucky enough to borrow one from a friend.

Glass bottles are great. If you get plastic make sure it is the BP free plastic. Most of the big brands carry them now.

I know I am in LA, but we have several moms groups around here that are based online. I can't imagine there wouldn't be similar groups all around the states. Try to google search your area for it. These groups have their own classifieds giving away or selling stuff cheap. They also have periodic multi family garage sales all geared toward baby/kid stuff. Not to mention the play groups and other local information they have. It is worth joining.

Good luck and hope that helps!
Me 33 DH 36
TESE/ICSI
TTC almost 2 years
U/S 6/17 IT'S TWIN GIRLS!!
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Postby lynniecat » Sun Jan 11, 2009 7:56 pm

What about a baby dresser? They are cute, but temporary right? I mean, maybe its lame, but can't I share my dresser and then buy a "big boy/girl" one later?
Me: 44 severely reduced reserve
DH: 44 perfect
IVF 1: Feb 08 -BFP twins (lost one at 7 weeks, one at 13 weeks) :-(
IVF 2: June 08 -BFN :-(
IVF 3: September 08 -BFN :-(
IVF 4: November 08 - Katherine Emma born 8/9/2009 :D
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Postby babyloves » Sun Jan 11, 2009 8:09 pm

we bought a huge dresser that will become our kids furniture later on...we'll put a changing pad on top while we need to. The downside is that its really expensive - $500, but it looks like adult furniture so it can be used even in the guest room later on.
me 33 DH 34
TTC 4 yrs
unexplained, 3 failed IUI
7/7 IVF #1
7/18 ET - 2 embies
8/1 BFP!
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Postby CT_Michele » Sun Jan 11, 2009 9:04 pm

I didn't have a lot of room in the nursery, so I bought a changing table that was also a dresser, matched the crib. I think it was under $200, saved me room and is the changing table and the dresser.

Didn't think i needed the bouncy chair, so I did not register for one. Someone got me one anyway, and it is probably the most used item I have. I have a couch that is kinda "L" shaped with a chaise longe on each side, and the bouncy chair fits perfectly in on corner, so while we are hanging out in the living room watching tv, she is right next to us and the animals don;t bother her. She is starting to outgrow it a little, but well worth it for the first 5 months atleast.
Me- 28 DH- 33 Male Factor
1st IVF- 12/07- BFP! Ella Michele was born 8/26/8
2nd IVF- 04/09 - BFN
1st FET- 09/09 - Chemical
3rd IVF - 04/11 - Embies didn't make it to ET
4th IVF - Fall 2011??
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Postby babyloves » Mon Jan 12, 2009 5:51 pm

hi ladies..this is a valuable post :)
Turns out i might not be having a shower due to family issues - everyone is too preoccupied with things - i think for good reason...although i'm the first in my family to be having kids in 20 yrs :(

Anyway, now we're wondering what basics we really really need - my family will still be getting bouncy seats, stroller, car seats etc - things above $50 or so...but i need stuff i'll use on day 1 - at least now i can shop at stores cheaper than babiesrus.. :D

So far, then we should get - 2 cribs, mattresses, dresser/changing table, sheets & skirt, baby sponge & bath, bottles, breast pump, clothes, diapers...any thing else really essential that can't wait two months or so?

Thanks!
me 33 DH 34
TTC 4 yrs
unexplained, 3 failed IUI
7/7 IVF #1
7/18 ET - 2 embies
8/1 BFP!
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Postby Rubylee » Wed Jan 14, 2009 11:48 am

Don't forget the car seats, you'll need them installed to take your new bundles home.

My friend said to have a little bit of formula, just in case you need to top off or something unforeseen happens. Also mits for their hands so they can't scratch and a few hats. A health care kit with a rectal thermometer.
Me 33 DH 36
TESE/ICSI
TTC almost 2 years
U/S 6/17 IT'S TWIN GIRLS!!
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