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What did you buy before baby arrived?

Hi. I wondered if anyone had a list of things they purchased before baby arrived, and the sort of things they waited to buy once baby was here. For example, chair bouncer, swing, baby wrap, all seem to me like things that you might be better off buying once baby is here and you can see whether they prefer to be bounced / rocked etc? But I of course, have no clue! Similarly with a breast pump - surely it is better to see whether you can actually breast feed first? And a baby monitor - have seen some reviews where people haven't been able to use them until baby is out of the moses basket. I just don't want to end up buying lots of things I won't need but at the same time want to be prepared. Its hard to get that balance right when your new to it all! Any advice is welcome. I know I'll need clothes, nursery furniture, changing bag, materials for changing nappies, so its really anything outside of that where I'm getting a bit stumped and not knowing whether I'm wasting money or not.


  • We bought most things in advance tbh as we didnt want lots to buy once I went onto mat pay!! Our moby wrap I bought when she was about a week old and I wish id had itbin advance. A basic chair bouncer or swimg but I wouldnt spend much on either of those. Depends if youll have many friends with ones to try once baby is here ss uou really cant tell much unless they go in them a few times. Monitor we bought in advance as I wanted a movement monitor as those as used from dsy 1. I intended to bf (and did) and bought a basic set of bottles, manual pump etc which didnt cost much. If you dont open the boxes until you need them you could always sell on. Ive got an electric pump time but certsinly wouldnt have got one of those in advamce. To be honest the first 3 months are such a haze that the more you hsve and less you have to think about getting the better. I wouldnt buy faddy extras but getting all the main things in will make your life easier.

    I highly recommend speading the cost buy buying a few things per month, facebook local selling sites are brilliant and look up nct sales in your area. I think 90% of p's clothes wegot in advance csme from nct sales

  • Pretty much what AR said - we've also bought most things with SMP in mind but also life is only going to get more crazy. I can't see that we won't get use out of the monitor and I spent time researching the one I wanted (which I won't have when bubs arrives) and I got it while on offer. It might be difficult knowing whether they like being rocked or bounced without having something to test drive on! I'm hoping that a bouncer/swing with lots of options will mean there is something the baby enjoys! I think its inevitable we will have bought some things we won't use which I'll sell on at a later date. I guess its impossible to predict what babies will take to or not (some hate Moses baskets but you'll no doubt want something bought in advance for them to sleep in) but from our perspective we wanted to be as organised as possible while we could. The only thing we haven't gone crazy on is clothes or too many nappies/wipes of any one brand or size.

  • I agree with AR re spreading the cost. We've got 90% of our bits now. Some guy at work was really funny about us browsing prams at 20 weeks but I just didn't want to feel unprepared, I guessed the last tri would whizz by with other things to do.

    I will be buying a cheap bouncer (possibly used) and upgrade to something higher spec if baby loves/needs it. I'm not going to get a monitor until we've got to know baby a bit. I've got an electric pump, but that's because I know I won't be able to only BF, last time I had bottles and a mini-pack of formula in case of emergency, but no pump as i didn't know whether I'd need it. I'm struggling with what sling to get, but I will probably try and get something secondhand so I have *something* and take it from there.

  • We got things like monitor, bouncer, swing and breast pump after S arrived. We got the bouncer when he was a couple of weeks old, he wouldn't have used it much before then as he was either feeding or sleeping. The swing I bought a few weeks ago from eBay out of desperation after rocking him to sleep for the millionth time (he still doesn't fall asleep in it but I keep trying). The monitor we got for Christmas and use occasionally in the evenings when he's asleep upstairs and I need to go downstairs for a bit to prepare bottles etc but as he will be in with us for 6 months at night so it doesn't get a lot of use atm. The only thing I wish we had got before he arrived was the breast pump, I think everything else can wait - if it's a case of spreading cost you could put money aside?

  • I've gone down the organised route (for once in my life). I've got a moses basket, cot and nursery furniture, travel system inc changing bag, mobile, baby monitor, changing mats, baby clothes, blankets, bottles, and two drawer full of nappies etc.. The things I'm left to get are a baby sling (as per other post) and a breast pump/formula depending on whether BF is an option.

  • Equipment wise I pretty much bought everything I thought I needed in advance.  Stuff I didn't use immediately.. jumperoo (bargain), travel cot (gift but i used carrycot), cot (in a crib in our room for 7 months), on that basis pretty much the whole nursery,  including nursing chair as I fed in bed until she moved into her own room. Sleeping bags. The cot duvet we got too and still hasn't been removed from the packet!

    Things I neglected to buy and needed pretty soon... cheap foldable stroller as we holidayed abroad when E was 14 weeks,  swaddle blankets,  dummies, sling,  thermometer,  nappy bin,  those disposable nappy mats for nappy off time, groblind. Later we've bought stair gates,  cot wrap, next size morrck and sleeping bags.  A shed load of different bottles during a trial and error period, video monitor afyer ditching the movement one. Wish I'd have budgeted for that too.

  • We had most bits in advance to be honest as wanted to be prepared. Only things we left were majority of clothing bar Sleepsuits/vests (we didn't find out what we were having and aren't again), stair gates, jumperoo and dummies (IMO a must here this time!) we also needed different bottles v quickly as I had terrible colic and the ones we had weren't helping!

  • We bought the monitor before O was born, we have a crib for night sleeping so used the monitor from day 1 home, I don't think I would have slept a wink without it. We also bought a bouncer but purely because it was on offer in boots and they then had 3 for 2 on and also £20 off a £100 spend so I think the bouncer was £45 or something but I ended up getting it for £19! Like popcorn said this could definitely have waited as we only put him in it when he was about 3 weeks. I also just bought a cradle swing last week after constantly rocking him to sleep. Again not sure I would have used this from day 1 and glad I didn't buy a 'normal' swing before as he loves the sideways rocking. I didn't buy a breast pump and was glad as I didn't manage to BF for long so would never have used it.

    I used to keep a look out for offers, from the likes of boots etc and just buy things when they were on offer (like the bouncey chair).

    Things I was very glad to have at home for O getting home were -

    Dummies - After numerous times of trying to feed him as he was flapping about looking for food and him taking basically nothing, my H suggested trying a dummy (we had 2 we got free with the bottles/steriliser). He took it straight away and I realised that he was just looking for something to comfort him and he always always falls asleep with a dummy now, I would struggle to settle him without it.

    Selection of nappies - we tried aldi ones first but they were a bit too big for O's skinny legs but we had boots ones that he got on with perfectly. Glad I didn't have loads of one brand and that I had more than one make to hand so didn't have to rush back to the shops.

    Bottles - I would have used at some point with expressed milk if BF had worked out but was great having them there (and already knowing how to build them up/sterilise etc) before I needed to use them.

    Loads of bibs and Muslins - we go through at least a bib and a muslin at every feed as O has reflux so is often sick or spits up milk.

    The only thing I wish I had bought before he was born was a poddlepod, he was so small and it was hard to settle him in a big empty crib, we bought it when O was a week old and he slept so much better in it, it's very snug and comfy, plus it stops me worrying about him rolling over against the bars of the crib. The only thing I can think that I didn't need, despite being told by everyone, I was totally unprepared for the generosity and amount of baby gifts, most clothes, that we got. I hadn't gone too overboard with clothes and because O was so small we still had to buy some tiny baby stuff, but I genuinely won't really need to buy anything now for when he goes into his next size (0-3!) and probably up until he's into 6-9 months.

  • Here's a list I've used for baby stuff :

  • Thanks all, really helpful.

    Missdeedee - Did you have a moses basket? Just wondering if the poddlepod was just helpful because the only other sleeping area was the crib. I've just looked them up and can see why babies would probably like them! :)

  • Thanks ever so much Dumble! x

  • I don't regret buying anything in advance as it did help spread the cost. Also even once baby is here you still need to buy a lot of things to see if they like them, e.g. A was a crap sleeper and so we bought a slumber bear but it didn't help. But I'd had to buy it, to find that out.

    I think the things you really NEED, and the things we appreciated having to hand, are: nappies, wipes, maternity pads, breastpads, some clothes, nipple cream (if BFing), somewhere for baby to sleep, sling, car seat, old towels (which we used for swaddling and to wipe up sick/wee etc - never used muslins), easy-to-prepare food. Plus I guess you'd need formula, steriliser, bottles if planning to FF. All else can be bought either before or later. This list comes with the caveat that we don't drive, are a fair distance from the local Boots etc, and it was January and snowing.

    What I found really helpful was getting Amazon Prime. I went onto four-day weeks in the run up to mat leave and would order things next-day-delivery so they'd arrive when I was off. I got things like the bouncer, extra nappies and wipes, nipple cream, and lavender oil (put in a jug with water to run over your bits while weeing to avoid the burn) from Amazon and had them delivered, plus I could organise things like the cot to arrive at the right time.

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