With all of the little furniture and cutting-edge baby gear available, it’s tempting to grab a shopping cart (or a registry gun) and go wild. But first, take a moment to think about your baby’s safety — and your wallet.
After all, the last thing you need when you have a newborn is a case of baby-related buyer’s regret. So before you buy, here’s what you should know about each piece of baby gear.
The car seat
You could be lured to a convertible car seat, which can fit a baby as small as three pounds and endure until a toddler. However, a large convertible seat will be difficult to get in and out of the car while the infant is sleeping. Furthermore, most convertible seats lack wheeled frames, so you’ll need to transfer the infant to a stroller if you’re traveling more than a few steps.
On the other hand, an infant seat easily slides into and out of a car base at the push of a button. (If you frequently travel by cab, infant seats can also be easily and safely installed with a seat belt.) Look for one with an easy-to-grip handle and a large sunshade, and test it out with a stroller frame if you intend to use one. Avoid used car seats, which might be contaminated if placed in an accident-damaged vehicle.
You get the best of both worlds with the Doona Car Seat Stroller. The seller may be converted from a stroller to a car seat and back again in seconds. It fits the base of a vehicle seat and even works on aircraft.
Strollers are subject to a lot of wear and tear, so unless you’re positive you’re buying a lightly used model, get a new one. Shop for a stroller in person and have everyone who will be spending a lot of time behind it — at the very least, Mommy and Daddy — take it for a test drive. If the handles cannot be adjusted, ensure they are comfortable for the person who will be using them the most. Consider the quantity of storage space it has (the more, the better) and whether it will be easy to access once a small child occupies the stroller.
If you want your baby to sleep in the stroller, make sure it has a good slope (at least 45 degrees) and is easy to modify without disturbing your child. If you spend a lot of time on rough sidewalks, go for a model with air tires, which provide a more comfortable ride than plastic wheels. Apartment residents should experiment with collapsing and transporting a few strollers; lightweight umbrella strollers with carrying straps, such as the Bumble Bee Flite, are the easiest to transport up and downstairs. A large sunshade is a nice feature, but if you fall in love with a stroller with a little shade, various tie-on shades are available, such as the Protect-a-Bub.
This stroller is ideal for everyday use because it reclines flat, allowing your child to relax comfortably and safely. The tires include shock-absorption suspension for a pleasant ride, and there is a roomy storage basket for parents.
Crib While vintage cribs are appealing, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) strongly advises against using any crib more than ten years old. (Before you buy or borrow from a friend, check the CPSC website.) Cribs should have fixed sides (drop-side cribs are no longer available in the United States) and slats no more than two and three-eighths inches apart. Look for a brand that holds the Juvenile Products Manufacturing Association (JPMA) seal, which indicates that it has been tested for quality and safety.
Because cribs vary in height, you should go shopping for one in-person to ensure that Mommy and Daddy can both reach the baby when the mattress is at its lowest point. A type that transforms to a toddler bed provides a comfortable transition from the crib and will last through numerous birthdays.
Parents adore the Dream On Me Synergy crib because it changes to a toddler bed, daybed, and full-size bed. In addition, it complies with JPMA safety regulations and is available in a variety of colors.