Most items on a baby registry only cover the necessary supplies needed for your newborn, and good reason.
Having the first few months of supplies and clothes ready and waiting makes caring for a newborn much easier.
But what about the items and services that can make your life as a new parent easier? Why aren’t those on your baby registry?
Before you read on and start thinking “this is frivolous and unnecessary” think again!
Babies were meant to be raised by tribes or extended families. Moms have historically had a “lying in” period so they could rest, bond with their babies, and recover from birth. During this postpartum period, family members and friends took care of the cooking, cleaning, laundry, shopping, etc.
Being raised by tribes or extended families isn’t an ancient practice. It was alive and well as recently as America’s colonial days.
“Some hundreds of years ago, Colonial Americans thought it fit for a woman who had just given birth to keep to her bed for three or four or more weeks. For the length of the “lying in” period, as it was called, the new mother would rest, regain her strength, and bond with the baby as her womanly attendants kept up the household. Several of these ladies would be relatives, and others not; none were paid, and all expected to be similarly cared for following their own deliveries.” // TheDailyBeast.com
If you don’t have this kind of support system, life will be much harder on you as a new parent.
In fact, lack of societal support is the reason why American parents are so unhappy. In a recent study, out of 22 English-speaking and European countries parents in the U.S. are the unhappiest.
So skip the fancy baby wipe warmer and the overpriced, designer diaper bag. Add these items to your baby registry and you’ll have more time and energy to enjoy your growing family. You’ll also be happier with it, and a happy parent means a happier baby.
#1 – Meal Delivery Service
It may sound like an indulgence you never thought you would participate in, but having meals delivered, even if it’s once a week, is a must! When you have a newborn, your concentration will be on caring for him or her. But, you’ve got to eat, too! Babies need their parents strong and nourished.
A friend who prepays for meals to be delivered to your house is an excellent friend. You’d be surprised how time-consuming it is to prep and cook meals. You should be resting or cuddling with Baby instead.
You can also set up a MealTrain account and invite your friends/family members/baby shower attendees to sign up! If you won’t want to ask them to pay for meal delivery, maybe encouraging them to drop off homemade meals is more your style.
#2 – Cleaning Service
Another service to pre-order before baby arrives is cleaning. Who wants to clean when you just put your body through labor, you could just let the house go for a bit. After all, your baby is more important. But living in the clutter can be stressful. Also, you don’t want dust and allergens building up with a sensitive new being in the house.
#3 – Dinner Reservations or Event Tickets
You and your partner are going to need a break at some point. Gift certificates can be a great way to cash in on a date night when you are ready to allow someone to watch the baby. Even better if the gift comes with an already lined up babysitter, give the new parents in your life the gift of sanity. Get out of the house even if you spend the time ahhing over pictures of your newborn on your phone.
#4 – Post-Baby Body Clothes
You may be able to go right back into your old clothes after pregnancy. However, you should be ready with some loose, comfy versions, just in case. Great quality yoga pants that you can wear out on the go. A supportive nursing bra and some comfortable shoes don’t hurt. You may not have that nine-months belly going on anymore, but you still have a little one in tow. Plus, after Baby’s born your comfort is what’s most important!
#5 – Movie Subscription Service
You will spend hours staring into your baby’s eyes, but you will need some other form of entertainment for the hours Baby’s napping in your arms. Hulu, Amazon, Kodi, and Netflix are all options. You can spend some time catching up on your favorite shows or rewatching some of your favorite movies. Watching movies and catching up on shows can also help when you’re up in the middle of the night and can’t go back to sleep.
#6 – Body Care/Massage
Self-care for new moms is a must! However, it often falls off the to-do list when your baby needs so much attention. You can make it easier by having a kit ready to go. Now is the time to splurge on the luxurious, all-natural, non-toxic, products to help you feel clean and refreshed while keeping Baby safe from toxic chemicals and harsh, artificial fragrances. Even better, add a 3-pack of at-home massages to your registry to facilitate recovery during your postpartum period.
You can also go with something as simple, and healing, as
#7 – Lactation Consultant
If you plan on breastfeeding, and you’re a first-time mom, a lactation consultant could be the deciding factor between weeks of frustration and months (or years!) of a happy, healthy breastfeeding relationship. The advice you get from other moms comes from only one perspective. Advice from a certified lactation consultant comes from study, experience, and working with many, many moms.
Keep in mind, doctors, nurses, and pediatricians do not specialize in lactation and breastfeeding.
In fact, they get little training in it! At the very least, keep 2-3 lactation consultants’ contact info on hand just in case you have any (and we mean ANY) questions about nursing.
Hopefully, this list will encourage you to think outside the box a little when it comes to your baby registry requests.
When setting up your baby registry, don’t forget to take care of you, too, Momma!
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