So you are having a baby…Congrats!
In this blog post you will not only learn about some of the great baby freebies you should sign up for while you are waiting for your special delivery, but what to keep in mind as you stock your home while preparing for baby!
1) Hospital Freebies:
A lot of new parents, friends and family will tell you that the hospital is a gold mine for getting started on some pretty awesome freebies. Hospitals not only supply you with FREE diapers while you are there, but they also give you formula, diaper rash creams, Johnson and Johnson baby body wash, cozy warm blankets to borrow, and so much more goodies and you just have to ask. Some hospitals even have soothers, free loans of breast pumps and baby wipes.You are welcome to take home a few special gifts from the hospital, just make sure you ask the nurses, but that is what those samples and freebies are there for, so enjoy!
2) Company Baby Sample Freebies:
My favourites include Similac, Nestle, Good Start, Enfamil, and the list goes on! Check out this complete listing of baby samples and freebies for all the details!
3) Registering at Babies R Us and Sears
Your family, friends, and colleagues will want to buy you gifts and perhaps spoil you with a baby shower, so head on over to Babies R Us and Sears and have fun scanning all your special wish list items! When you leave Babies R Us, make sure you get your FREE welcome baby gift pack ~ full of coupons, samples and awesome freebies like baby bottles, soothers and infant Tylenol. At Sears, make sure you hear more about their “guess your baby’s birthday and win Sears vouchers” game.
Well not really a game, but if you register with Sears and your friends and family purchase from your Sears registry, and your baby is born on the SAME day you indicated on your Sears form when registering (by natural delivery only, not C Section), you will WIN FREE vouchers from Sears (some restrictions apply as to the departments you can use the vouchers in) for the dollar amount your family/friends spent on gifts for you! So if your family bought you $300 worth of baby gear from Sears, your baby is born on the day you put on your Sears form, Sears will give you $300 worth of Sears vouchers to be claimed in store any way you wish! Amazing!
My top 12 items I could not live without that I put on my baby registry included:
1. A bouncy chair, sling chair or swing (that is NOT battery powered, but plugs into a wall)
2. A bunch of receiving blankets for spit up, swaddling, etc.
3. Zippered sleepers, I found I got easily frustrated with the snaps, and a zipper was so much quicker for a screaming baby
4. Infant tub (consider looking on Kijiji or other mom to mom sales online for this item)
5. Bath products ~ Johnson and Johnson mails coupons, so take a look at this product if you want to save money
6. Diaper Bag
7. Clothing for baby appropriate for season ~ don’t go overboard with clothing before baby, you will be surprised how quickly they grow out of things
8. Crib and mattress
9. Car seat
10. Monitor ~ consider looking on Kijij or other mom to mom sales online.
11. Bottles ~ you may have a fussy baby, so keep in mind you may try a few bottles and nipples before you have success
12. Stroller ~ again, not mandatory to get new so keep in mind you can get second hand as this item will get pretty dirty, tossed around and dragged a lot across the back of your car
Stocking Up For Baby
Once you get home, what should you have in your house to prepare for a baby?
In my opinion, whether you are deciding to use disposable diapers or cloth, the first few weeks of a baby’s life is full of really yucky diaper changes and it is always a lot easier to use disposable diapers until the baby works things out of his/her system. Most babies will be in size 1 diapers for about a month. So you will not need too many boxes or bags of size 1 diapers. I suggest you buy a maximum of 2 boxes (approx. 200-240 diapers = 8 to 10 diaper changes a day x 7 days a week x 4 weeks in a month) of size 1 as most companies will have diaper sales running constantly and if you need 1 more box you know you or partner can run out and grab another on sale with a coupon.
I would also stock up on 2 or 3 boxes of size 2 diapers (if you are deciding to stick with disposable). If you find a really great diaper deal, you can also buy a box of size 3 and 4, but I wouldn’t fork out too much money as typically you will find great deals on diapers as time goes on.
If you are deciding to stick with disposable diapers, look for disposable diaper prices at a MAXIMUM of 17 cents a diaper (training diapers/larger sizes are a bit more pricey), anything more is not saving you much. If you find deals around 13 – 15 cents or less, you have a bargain!
Another item to have lots of on hand and ready for when baby comes home! There are some really great frugal ways to make your own wipes, but if you are deciding to purchase them, look for around a penny a wipe or less. Huggies/Pampers and Kirkland Costco wipes are 3 very popular diaper wipes. Huggies has some coupons out from time to time, Pampers rarely has coupons and Costco’s Kirkland brand will drop to $15.64 for 900 count which is the cheapest you will find. Wipes don’t expire BUT they will dry out if they are left in a hot and humid spot.
Keep in mind, wipes are wet and environment and storage are very important so that they don’t grow bacteria. So stock up with the space you have in a nice cool spot. I would typically have about 500 wipes on hand per month. You will go through a lot more in the first few months of birth as you get used to wiping and feel that you need 7 wipes to get the job done, but you will soon realize that you really only need 2 or 3 max for those dirty jobs!
Consider buying a few bottles of fragrance-free detergent to wash baby clothing, sheets, towels, etc. You don’t have to use this detergent with your items, so you won’t go through it very quickly. Baby’s have very sensitive skin and are often times effected by strong odours, so keep this in mind when your baby is fussy around women/men with very strong perfumes/colognes!
BABY SHAMPOOS and WASH
Similar to above, babies are very sensitive to smells! Try and find a fragrance-free brand, and remember you do not need much to clean a baby. Most doctors/care professionals recommend only bathing your baby 3 x a week max. So you will not need much stocking up on this item. Johnson and Johnson (when requested) sends you a coupon for a FREE travel pack, you could try this product line and see if it works for you and these samples will last you a month.
Medicine? I wouldn’t personally stock up on any medicine prior to a baby’s arrival ~ why? Well expiries as well as typically you will be seeing your doctor a lot for the first year of your child’s life and they have samples too. I got 1 bottle of Advil and 1 bottle of Tylenol prior to my daughters arrival and ended up not using either for the first 6 months and it all expired:(
Baby Food? Your baby won’t be eating anything from a jar/dish until at least 4 months. Don’t worry until then and by then you will find out from other mommies that making your own food is not only cheaper but better for them
Formula? Every baby will be different, with all the samples I suggested you sign up for above, you will luck out to try a bunch of them with your little one! If breast feeding works, then stocking up on formula was a waste of money as it is one of the most expensive items!
Having a baby is so exciting and preparing for their arrival should be blissful and fun, not stressful. Reminder that stores and aisles dedicated to babies are full of temptation to make the transition to being a parent “smooth” (and often times expensive!) from cradles that mimic the womb movements to specially designed ergonomic high chairs. Remember … as long as your child is fed, warm, dry and above all loved ~ you are doing amazing!
Congratulations on your new bundle!
This post was written by CouponChristine exclusively for Real-Mommy.com!
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