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Tuesday, July 21, 2020

Best Things to Give A Frugal Couple For a Baby Shower


A big part of many people's pregnancies is being able to have a baby shower with their friends and family, and with Coronavirus changing the world, this may not seem possible. But there are innovative ideas that have popped up, and baby showers are still an option, whether its for your first or your second baby.

In addition to games and food, a part that has been integral at baby showers has been gifting, so I thought I'd put together a list of items a frugally minded couple might want as a gift at their baby shower. Of course, all of these are personal, and not every frugal couple will want all of these, but this list might be a good starting place for a couple to create a wish list so that their loved ones might know what would best help them. This list is something specifically that will help people save money with their children in the long and short term.

Of course, if you're not having a baby shower and are expecting a child, these are things you might want to stock up on anyhow, because they are useful to have around.


Diapering

Cloth diapering is a huge money saver, especially if you go with cheaper types of  cloth diapers such as prefolds with covers instead of all in one diapers. If the expectant parents plan on cloth diapering, here's some essentials to get started on.
  • Cloth diapers, ideally prefolds and covers. Get prefolds that are large enough to be used for more than one size, and get covers that expand in size to be one size fits nearly all. You'll want ones that have insides that can be wiped clean instead of fabric insides. If you are using prefolds, I also suggest a bunch of snappis, things used to hold cloth diapers in place instead of diaper pins.
  • Washable wipes. Even if you don't use cloth diapers, reusable washable wipes are useful, and are hypoallergenic, and can be upgraded to use as washcloths when you are done diapering.
  • Diaper sprayer. This is an attachment to a toilet that you can use to clean off diapers before sticking them in the wash, and it also can be used as a bidet for family use. We still use ours 10 years later.
Feeding the Baby

Nursing isn't for everyone, but if you can make it work it generally can save a lot of money instead of paying for formula. However, if you are working out of the house or need to leave the baby at times, you might need more equipment. And then when the baby starts eating solids, even more so.
  • Nursing pillow. This makes it much easier to position the baby and makes your back hurt less. I loved mine and used mine regularly.
  • Reusable nursing pads.
  • Milk catchers. This saves the milk that comes out from the opposite side when you nurse or pump or even can be worn all the time to collect milk, depending on the brand.
  • Breast pumps are super useful to be able to supply milk to your baby while you are not there. Before you purchase one, if you have health insurance, see if you can get one for free, since many supply them.
  • Once your baby starts eating solid foods, you may start them on baby food. A food processor or blender stick will help with this, so you can make your own baby food, and it's also extremely useful to have as a general frugal tool at home to make things from scratch. However, I actually recommend that parents look into what is called Baby Led Weaning, which involves giving kids real food from the start, and doesn't necessitate any special equipment.
Transportation

Babies need to get from one place to another, and this can add up tremendously.
  • Car seats. There's so many different types, but if you get an infant car seat you'll need to buy new ones when they become bigger and other ones when they are even older. While more expensive at first, a convertible car seat that works from infancy and until kids are in boosters are most cost efficient.
  • Strollers are useful but make sure they're as useful as possible by getting ones that lay flat for infancy and then go upright for older children, instead of a bassinet and then an additional seat. Additionally if you have more than one child, there are strollers that have attachments for kids to be able to stand on them while you are pushing the other child. When looking for strollers, make sure its one that is able to do all of these, so you don't need to purchase new equipment.
  • Baby wraps/carriers are my favorite thing for babies and toddlers, since they allow so much flexibility when traveling, especially in places that have no stairs. In addition, they allow one to calm a cranky baby or toddler, and hold them while getting things done around the house, so they help be more frugal becasue you aren't tied up holding a baby in your arm and then need to pay for convenience. If you want to do this most frugally, I recommend buying a woven wrap, not a stretchy one or a structured one, because woven wraps can be used from newborn all the way to preschool, and can be worn in various ways by various people.
Gender Neutral

I know there is something exiting about dressing up your girl in girly girly clothes, or boys in very boyish things, but if you plan on having more than one child, you don't know what the future child's gender will be and you then may feel that you need to buy new things, whether its clothes or toys or blankets. Sticking to gender neutral things predominantly will save money in the long run. Of course, even gender neutral clothing can be made more boyish or girly with accessories, like headbands or hats.

Of course there are so many different things that you can want and would save you money when you start off, but I tried to focus on things that, once gifted, will stop parents from needing to spend more money on their baby or on future kids.

I want to thank my Facebook friends who helped me with coming up for suggestions for this post.

What are your favorite things to gift at a baby shower, for a frugal family? What was your favorite gift you got as a first time parent?

3 comments:

  1. My most appreciated gift was 3 months of free diaper service. Since we did not own a dryer yet, and air drying was not an option in the winter, it was a life saver!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My grandparents got that as a gift for my parents when I was born in the 80s. Are diaper services still around?

      Delete
  2. For us a crib and (matching) dresser/changing table are pretty essential baby items. You can make do without anything, but we've been using these for the last 8 years straight.
    Cloth diapers are more frugal, but I've never been motivated to try them. I deal with enough body fluids, and enough laundry, as it is.

    ReplyDelete

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