Truth is, you (and your baby!) will be fine with the minimum amount of stuff that is out there and marketed to you. That's not to say that some of that stuff can't make your life a little easier for a short period of time (in the scheme of things), but you may find that this stuff just takes up space, costs money and remains unused for most of the time. With that said, as parents, YOU get to decide what you provide to your baby and what you put in your home.
Whether you receive gifts, hand-me-downs or go shopping, consider a few things:
- Do I already own something similar?
- Does my child "need"* this object? *need is used loosely!
- Is there a way my child would have access to this object elsewhere?
- Is this object well-made, safe for my child and the environment?
- Is there something I already have that could be a substitute for said object?
- If I keep or buy this object, will it add to the growth and happiness for my child/our family or will it add stress/chaos due to size, upkeep or other factor?
Let me stress, there's nothing wrong with having a home full of baby toys, clothes, gear or other stuff...as long as you feel at peace with the quantity and quality of it all. But if it's stressful, hard to manage or chaotic sorting through everything related to baby, then perhaps you need to look at it with a critical eye and pass on, sell or store anything that is not helping or adding to the growth of your child or family.
What are MY top five?
- set of toy keys for my baby to shake, chew and suck
- set of blocks (and watch how your child plays differently with them as she grows!)
- Baby Legs leg warmers (perfect for adding or removing when the weather changes)
- outdoor ball
- baby carrier (I prefer Ergo for it's durability and comfort)
What are YOUR top five object?