1. A great stroller
2. A high quality white noise machine
3. Ten really adorable non-white outfits
4. Ten long sleeve and ten short sleeve white onesies
5. Receiving blankets
6. The Rock n Play Sleeper
8. A Pack n Play
9. A crib
10. A baby carrier
1. A great stroller. Sure Graco makes decent strollers, and that's what we registered for, but in the end you're going to wish you had chosen something a little nicer. My recommendation is find something high quality second hand (gently used) from Craig's List if it isn't in your budget. If this is your second baby maybe invest in a double stroller.
If I could choose a new stroller that fit my budget- here's what I'd pick. And it's on sale! Britax is probably my favorite car seat brand and this stroller gets great reviews.
2. A high quality white noise machine. We've been using these with all of our kids and it makes a huge difference in their sleep. You don't need to tip toe around the house after bedtime, and if one of your other children wakes up the baby is less likely to hear. All of my kids sleep with white noise... they might be fifteen years old before I wean them off. Disclaimer- since you use these for about 14 hours a day, they aren't going to last forever. Either buy the $100 model or be prepared to replace them yearly.
Here's the one we have. $24.95 on Amazon.
3. Ten really adorable non-white outfits. I say non-white because your baby is going to vomit and poop all over them. Just being real. Let this be your warning. Choose something you can wash and that your baby won't ruin in one wear. I recommend picking several high quality outfits that you really love- maybe its Baby Gap or Janie & Jack. YOU pick them, not Great Aunt Mildred. Stay away from Target, Walmart, or discount brands. I found myself dressing my babies in my five favorite outfits constantly, while much of the rest of their wardrobe went unworn simply because I didn't like it.
4. Ten long sleeve and ten short sleeve white onesies. This is important. Have these stocked and ready to go, you'll go through them like crazy. Like I said, poop, vomit and drool are going to take their toll. Be prepared!
$10 for five on Amazon. Gerber is the way to go.
5. Skip burp cloths, go straight for receiving blankets. I know this sounds kind of crazy... in the beginning I really don't think you need them. Go straight for some great, generously sized receiving blankets in prints you really love. They double as burp cloths, swaddles, blankets, nursing covers, instant changing tables, and play mats.
Well these are cute.
6. The Rock n Play Sleeper. This is a MUST HAVE! The first three months I tend to sleep on the couch in the living room with our babies, because I feed them on demand through the night. So if they're crying, I'm pulling them onto the couch nursing them. This is just what works for us... Andrew doesn't wake up, the kids are less likely to hear, and I can put on Netflix to keep myself awake. (Memorable series I've watched with newborns have been Parks and Rec (complete series), Heartland (complete series) and Hart of Dixie (embarrassingly, complete series, ugh). Anyway- I set up the Rock n Play next to the couch, and grab the baby as needed to nurse. Then they get swaddled as tightly as possible and put back in the Rock n Play after nursing.
Here's one from Target, $53.
7. Diapers. Um...duh. I did cloth diapers for a while but after two kids couldn't keep up with it. Pampers Swaddlers are what they give you in the hospital for your newborn and you will never forget the smell. Every time I have a newborn it brings back so many memories. So stock up on those, I think they make them up to size two. It pays to have a high quality diaper at first, but after their poop is more solid (6 months-ish) there is no reason that child shouldn't be in Target/Wal-Mart brand unless you're Jessica Alba. Babies r Us diapers are terrible, FYI. So skip those.
Available everywhere, but here's the link to Target.
8. A Pack n Play. If you go on vacation or leave your house overnight, these are useful. Graco brand is totally fine for this since it isn't in use every day. Mine has lasted through three kids and I'll use it with my fourth.
9. A crib. Again, duh. And I've used the same white Target crib with all of my kids. I believe its middle of the road priced. Yes they've gnawed on the rails so if that bothers you get something in a composite material. Honestly, no complaints here and this is based on your taste so you really don't need to spend a ton.
They still sell our original crib! $200.
10. A baby carrier. I couldn't have functioned without my Mei-Tei wrap. My three year old still rides on my back in it sometimes. This one is affordable and has lasted through all three kids with daily use. And if it wears out... it's only $30!
The Infantino Sash Mei Tei $34