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Minimal baby needs

Last post Mon, Jun 28 2010 2:49 PM by Brandy. 33 replies.
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  • Sat, Jan 9 2010 5:38 PM

    Minimal baby needs

     I wasn't sure where to put this but I figure that pregnancy and eary childhood count as stages of life. :) I have a question: What would you consider the minimum needs of a baby, and how would those needs be met frugally? Here's my list to show you what I mean:

    Maternity clothes - Save your bigger clothes if you previous weighed more; or alter your smaller clothing; or get secondhand clothing from friends and family; or buy a few basic outfits at thrift stores or yard sales.

    Diapers - Use cloth, especially to save money in the long run.

    Wipes - Use cloth.

    Feeding - Breastfeed, then make your baby's food at home.

    Carrying your baby - Use a baby sling to keep your hands free during the day and to avoid the cost of strollers. As an added plus, mother and child share body warmth.

    Clothing for baby - Sew your own; or get seconhand items from friends and family; or buy a few basic items at thrift stores and yard sales.

     

    What does anyone have to add or say to this? I'm sure there are costs I'm forgetting.

    Thanks!

     

     

     

  • Sat, Jan 9 2010 6:23 PM In reply to

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    Don't forget about cribs and carseats.

    It is my opinion that these should be bought new. I say this because you'll want to have your product registered with the manufacturer so they can notify you in case they have a safety recall.

    Carseats have a limited service life. I read somewhere that they generally last five years, but I'm not exactly sure. (So don't quote me on that...) In any case, never ever buy a used car seat unless you are absolutely positively sure that it has never been in a car accident. Once a car seat has experienced an accident, it should be discarded immediately.

    I used to feel okay about buying a secondhand crib, but there have been so many recalls lately that I believe they should now be bought new as well.

    Stacie

    http://holdinghandswithmyhoney.blogspot.com/
  • Sat, Jan 9 2010 6:29 PM In reply to

    • Toni B.
    • Top 25 Contributor
    • Joined on Fri, Apr 4 2008
    • Seneca Falls NY
    • Posts 3,826

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    When my kids were young, we used umbrella strollers. Those stroller SUV's that they have out now are ridiculous. I had just gotten rid of all the baby stuff when I got pregnant with DS #2. Knowing that babies grow fast, I didn't go overboard. Bought some clothing second hand and stocked up on diapers.
    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in Stages of Life
  • Sat, Jan 9 2010 9:17 PM In reply to

    • MarthaMFI
    • Top 10 Contributor
      Female
    • Joined on Wed, Apr 16 2008
    • New Westminster, BC, Canada
    • Posts 10,850

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    I believe in second stuff esp clothes and toys but I think a stroller is a handy thing to have.  someplace to put groceries etc.  slings etc are hard on necks. plus if you have other kids to watch too, its handy to have one strapped in for a nap while you are chasing another.

    Officially recognized Stretchpert in Hobbies and Crafts
  • Sat, Jan 9 2010 9:40 PM In reply to

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    Wearing larger clothes for maternity wear doesn't work for me.  I guess if I were home all day and didn't go out much, it would be an option.  But I would want at least a couple of outfits that looked nice on me and actually fit properly everywhere and not just my belly, so that I wouldn't feel self-conscious when I was out in public.

    I agree that carseats should be bought new and disposed of immediately following an accident.  However, on the crib, if it meets the newer standards (slats X inches apart, no spike-y decorative bits on the corners, etc.) I would get it second hand and just replace the mattress.  My DD's grandma bought us a crib and I just replaced the mattress.

    Depending on how much you invest in cloth diapers, if you only have 1 child the cost can be comparable to a supply of diapers.  The real savings kicks in with the 2nd child.  At least that's what I read in some articles on cloth diapering.  I didn't have easy access to a washing machine and I was working 50 hour weeks on a regular basis, so I went with disposable.  I would have loved to cloth diapered regardless of cost.

    Officially Recognized Stretchpert in the General forum
  • Sun, Jan 10 2010 8:54 AM In reply to

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    sunshinetreva:
    agree that carseats should be bought new and disposed of immediately following an accident.  However, on the crib, if it meets the newer standards (slats X inches apart, no spike-y decorative bits on the corners, etc.) I would get it second hand and just replace the mattress.  My DD's grandma bought us a crib and I just replaced the mattress.

    I bought my DD's crib second hand. I didn't even replace the mattress. I just scrubbed it really good, and it was fine. But now I feel that cribs should be bought new, because of that massive crib recall recently. Over a million cribs were recalled because the front side of the crib could come loose, making a hole big enough for the baby to strangle. Unfortunately, some babies did die before the recall was issued.

     

    sunshinetreva:
    I was working 50 hour weeks on a regular basis, so I went with disposable.

    I wasn't even working at all, and I went with disposable. I know they're not environmentally friendly, but it seems all my kids refuse to sleep, have colic, and generally do everything they can to keep me away from housework. Adding to the ever-mounting hill of laundry wasn't going to help!! LOL

    Stacie

    http://holdinghandswithmyhoney.blogspot.com/
  • Sun, Jan 10 2010 9:19 AM In reply to

    • happy
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on Sun, Jul 29 2007
    • Posts 134

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    Good question! As many of you know from other posts I am busy preparing for a grandchild in July.

     I have been sewing and collecting anything I can get my hands out to help out DS and his wife. To say this baby came at a time when they are struggling financially would be an understatment!!!! So I am trying to help anyway possible. I wasnt sure what all they would need so I consulted baby websites for a list of items needed for the first year. There is no way you need all those items! I still dont understand how a carseat expires and we have been given a stroller/carseat combination from a cousin that has an expiration date of three months ago.

    Its clean, sturdy and has never been in an accident is there anyway to have it recertified?

    What a burden to our landfills to have all these baby items going to the dump all because of an arbitrary date.  

     

  • Sun, Jan 10 2010 10:36 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    My youngest is six so it's been a few years since I have had a baby but these were the things I found most necessary: Diapers- I did use cloth for the last one. Wipes- I used cloth at home and disposables for when out of the house. Bottles and formula- I am anemic with children who had issues at birth. I did breastfeed as much as possible but having bottles on hand were lifesavers for both baby and I. Breastfeeding apron- A blanket works just as well but I found a cover specifically made for this was even better. I am a private person when it comes to some things and worked in the office of my husband's business with baby in sling and nursing. I could cuddle, nurse, have one or both hands free to work and deal with people coming in and out, also worked out well for homeschooling the other two. Carrier/sling- See some of the above. This allowed me to have the baby close but kept my hands more free for other things too. Stroller- We lived where I could walk to stores when the youngest was an infant. The stroller allowed me to push them around and enjoy mobility or became a great place to stash stuff when on the go. Durable toys- Babies like to chew and explore so a few things that will last and encourage exploration and enjoyment of their world helps. Large bibs- great for keeping food off clothes. Clothes- for me, maternity was a must. I am a small person so my regular clothes was not an option and altering would have been more costly. For baby, sewing would have cost more than buying. High chair- I found this to be necessary when my children were of an age to sit up and eat. Having them join us at the dinner table and eat with us early on was a positive experience that developed early habits. Food grinder/blender/processor/potato masher- something to mash and/or grind foods is a must for the parent who makes their own baby food. Car seat- this is absolutely necessary. Crib- necessary if baby is not co-sleeping. Blankets- I found both heavy and light ones necessary Fleece!- blankets in this were great but a fleece coat that was given to us was fantastic for my youngest. It's warm enough to keep baby warm but not bulky to interfere with a car seat's straps. When I had my last child, I was fortunate to have friends with little ones who were outgrowing infant clothes and items. I was able to get stroller, high chair, clothes, toys and more free or low cost. I am also fortunate that I had access to thrift stores that sold baby clothes for $1 a piece or less. I was able to buy a nice wardrobe at very little cost.
    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Sun, Jan 10 2010 10:39 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    Ack! My husband is having me test a different browser to see if it resolves some issues with the computer. It does not work with DS. I am so sorry for lack of spacing. It's not allowing spaces and some of my functions are not available for posting.
    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



  • Sun, Jan 10 2010 10:44 AM In reply to

    • Brandy
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on Wed, Mar 28 2007
    • Saving in South Mississippi
    • Posts 25,145

    Re: Minimal baby needs

    sunshinetreva:
    Wearing larger clothes for maternity wear doesn't work for me.
    Wearing larger clothes wouldn't work for me either. I am five feet tall and at nine months pregnant for my first child was a whole 122 pounds, I was 134 at nine months for the last one. If I could have made something fit for the belly, it would flop loosely somewhere else. For my third, I hit the thrift store and was able to get some nice things at low prices. I cloth diapered only for my last and found it cheaper than disposables. I did NOT pay full price for the diapers and that is like everything else we frugal folks know is the key to spending less or saving more.
    The Dollar Stretcher Community Manager



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