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home>>family>>babies>>baby need

What Does Baby Really Need?

by: Brandie Valenzuela

When it comes to what you "must have" for your new baby, everyone has an opinion. If you don't think so, just ask around. Your mother, mother-in-law, best friend, and neighbor will all have a different list. Sure, some of the items in their lists might be similar, but you will notice that for the most part, they are vastly different.

With that said, I will be the first to say that my list isn't for the shopaholic or someone who wants every luxury for their newborn. You will find that my list is simple and practical. I like to think of it as a "budget conscious" or "frugal" list of baby needs. You won't see "battery-operated cradle" listed on my list, because, is not a necessity. You will also not see a list of items for creating the perfect nursery. What you will see listed are items that are important and worth spending your hard-earned money on. Items that I recommend that parents check local consignment stores, garage sales, and thrift stores for. So, for all you parents, like myself, who want to know what you really need to buy, read on!

SLEEPING

* Crib:
If your newborn will be sleeping in a crib, you will want to make sure you have approximately three to four fitted crib sheets. Optional items for the crib include a bumper, comforter, dust ruffle, and mobile.
* Bassinet:
Many new parents use a bassinet for the newborns early months. If you will be, you will want to have a couple of bassinet sheets as well.
* Parent's Bed:
If you newborn will be sleeping with you, you won't need to buy anything unless you sleep in a waterbed or on a very soft mattress. If that is the case, then you will need to buy a new bed that has a firmer mattress. Not exactly inexpensive, but it is crucial that your mattress is not too soft if your baby will be sleeping with you.

LAYETTE

* 6 one-piece underwear (AKA Onesies)
* 3-6 hats and booties/socks
* 4-6 bibs
* 3-6 receiving blankets
* 3-6 sleep play outfits
* 3 gowns
* 4 dozen cloth diapers per month (if using cloth diapers)
* 8 diaper pins (if using cloth diapers)
* 10 disposable diapers per day (if using disposable diapers)
* 3-6 baby blankets

FEEDING

If breastfeeding: Good news! If you are breastfeeding, you won't need much, which is perfect if you are trying to be frugal. Many mothers use breast pads, which you can purchase disposable or washable ones. Also, if you feel that you will need to give your baby breastmilk from a bottle, you will need to purchase a breast pump and a few bottles.

If bottlefeeding:

* 2-8 bottles
* Bottle brush
* Formula

SAFETY

* Outlet covers
* Safety gate
* Cabinet latches
* First aid kit

BATH TIME

* Baby bathtub
* 1-3 washcloths
* 1-2 hooded towels
* nail clippers or scissors
* brush and comb
* toiletries: baby shampoo, baby soap/wash, cotton swabs, rubbing alcohol (for umbilical cord), baby wipes

ON THE GO

* Carseat (I recommend only buying new carseats)
* Stroller or Baby Carrier/Sling
* Diaper Bag

MEMORIES

* Camera and Film
* Baby Book

As you can see, the needs of a baby are great, but keeping away from the luxuries, will help you keep to your budget. If your income is very limited, I am sure you will find some items on this list that you will decide you don't need. Every new parents list will be different -- it just depends on where you put your priorities. Just remember, your baby doesn't care if you have every little gadget or new product -- he only cares that he has you!

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About The Author
Brandie Valenzuela is married and a mother of three children, who enjoys working at home as an editor and freelance writer. If you like this article, be sure to sign up for her free Family First Newsletter at: http://members.aol.com/BMValen/index.html. Or sign up for her free Daily Holiday Recipe ezine at: http://members.aol.com/BMValen/dhr.html
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