The baby registry: How-tos & must-haves

Tips for your baby registry

For me, making a baby registry was kind of stressful. Don’t get me wrong—it was fun thinking about all the wonderful gifts loved ones would shower me with, but I quickly became bogged down with the overwhelming abundance of choices. And I had no idea where to start.

Good news: It doesn’t have to be like that for you! Here is the best advice I can give you as well as some must-haves for your baby registry. And remember: If you don’t get something crucial off of your registry, or if you forgot something, you can always buy it later!

Research other moms’ lists

I quickly discovered that other moms have already done the work for me—and the same goes for you! The number one, most helpful tool when I was researching what to register for? Pinterest. One night when I was ready to tackle the assignment, I went on Pinterest and typed “baby registry” into the search field, and a billion curated lists popped up. I decided to take five of those baby registry lists, print them out and cross-reference the suggestions. They were each a slight variation of one another, so within a night or two, I was able to come up with a very solid list of needs and wants for my little guy. I showed my list to two of my friends with toddlers, and they confirmed my choices were good ones.

You don’t need it all

You may think you need everything in the baby department, but honestly, you don’t. I found that I didn’t use half the newborn clothing I had, because my little guy grew so fast. I didn’t need a portable bottle warmer, because he didn’t mind his formula cold. Once you get to know your little one, you will learn their likes and dislikes. At that point, you can get some specific baby products to suit them (and you!).

Don’t stress

Don’t overthink your baby registry. Rely on pre-made lists, customer reviews and what you like the look of. It’s not worth stressing over. It’s a fun process, so enjoy it and let people shower you!

Go-to items for new moms

  • Swing. AMAZING! I did not register for one, and I wish I had. I ended up buying this one later.
  • Baby PJs with zippers. Trust me when I say this: Buttons are a nightmare! A crying baby in the middle of the night is stressful enough.
  • Muslin swaddlers. A few good wraps are essential for keeping your little one cozy and snug while they sleep.
  • Bathtub. This one is easy to use, flattens and hangs on a door for easy storage.
  • Soothie pacifiers. These are great for newborns and definitely helped relax my son. I have about 75 of these because I’m always losing them!
  • Play mat. This safe spot for putting your little one down is great for their development and gives mom a bit of a break!

Share photos of your registry experience or your baby shower! Post pics of yourself choosing or receiving your baby essentials on Twitter or Instagram with hashtag #WalmartBaby.

4 maternity wear must-haves

New mom in maternity top

Shopping for maternity clothes is a nightmare. I don’t believe anyone has ever gone maternity shopping and gotten that giddy, excited “Oh my gosh, I can’t believe how many cute things I just bought!” feeling. Your body changes so quickly, and the choices out there are extremely limited. Then there is the sticker shock. Maternity clothes are generally 30% more expensive than the non-maternity version. Add the fact that you only need them for 6–9 months, and you can blow through a clothing budget before know it.

I have four kids and bought a new maternity wardrobe with each pregnancy. How? I wore the same few things over and over again. (And I wanted to burn every piece as soon as I got back into my pre-pregnancy clothes!) So after four rounds of this, here are some absolute must-haves to make it through your nine months.

1. A ponytail holder or rubberband is the best tool you have. It’s a cheap, MacGyver-ish way to get some breathing room as you gain those first few pounds. I recall one afternoon when my pants felt so much tighter than they were that morning. I pulled off my ponytail, looped it through the buttonhole, wrapped it around the button—and voila!—I could breathe again.

2. Loose, blousy tops were a great investment, because they hid my bump in my first trimester and lasted all the way to the third.

3. Full-panel maternity leggings. You will never want to take these off. Enough said. Definitely check these comfy leggings out, and stock up.

4. A top or a dress that makes you feel pretty. Sometimes you just need to look good even when you don’t feel good. So I bought a beautiful, printed dress that showed off my bump and garnered tons of compliments. On those days where I was suffering from complete exhaustion, bad heartburn or morning sickness, that dress was a miracle worker. This sleeveless dress is one that just might do the trick for you!

Share your magical maternity photos with us! Tag your baby bump pics on Twitter or Instagram with #WalmartBaby.