Tuesday, May 29, 2012

My first foray into "mommy blogging"

Ok, I don't really plan on turning this into a "mommy blog" because a: I still can't quite believe I'm going to be a mom (whose bright idea was that?!) and b: I don't really enjoy reading "mommy blogs" so why would I write one? But, being pregnant and having a kid are definitely a part of my life now, so I will be posting about childy things on occasion.

Today's topic? Baby registries. 

 swag bags from Target, Buy Buy Baby and Babies 'R Us

I know several people who are pregnant and have gotten questions on registering for baby gifts. Registries are funny things. When you get right down to it? They're tacky. "Here's a list of all the things I took responsibility for supplying my child when I decided to get knocked up, in a handy list in case you want to foot the bill for any of it."

While I'm thankful to have friends and family who are throwing me baby showers and people who are requesting registry information, I still think it's kind of a funny thing. And if you were one of the people who got an invitation to a shower, and you don't want to buy me a present? Don't, but please come anyway, because I love my friends and family and I like to hang out with all of you. If you didn't get invited to a shower, but wanna come? Let me know, I'll hook you up (and you don't have to bring a present).

Registering for baby stuff? In a word? Terrifying. There are SO many things a baby needs, bottles (even if you're breastfeeding), furniture, bedding, clothes, diapers (disposable or cloth), travel accessories like car seats (plural) and strollers, and books. Then there are all the things designed to make your life and baby's easier. Toys, chairs, gliders, gates, outlet covers, changing tables/pads, the list goes on and on. There are so many "things" you can get when you're having a baby, it's slightly ridiculous to think about. Then you have to also think about safety concerns. Which car seats are good, which are ok and which are just overpriced? Is it ok to use your old crib from when you were a baby? (FYI, probably not, it was probably drop-side which is now illegal). What bottles will work? Oh the research.

But, people ask where you're registered, and at the end of the day, when you're talking items with safety concerns (car seats) or just what your preference is (diapers disposable v. cloth) it's easier to register.

Which brings up an entirely different dilemma. Where do you register? There are lots of things to consider. Where do your friends and family live? What is available to them? Can you do online only, or do you have to have a brick and mortar store to go to?

I actually had a very, very difficult time registering. In the end, we spread ourselves a little thin and registered at FOUR places. Which is a lot, but let me explain. We registered at Amazon, Target, Babies 'R Us and Buy Buy Baby. Amazon we chose mostly for us. It's easy to use, you can add things from ANYWHERE and you get a discount on completing items after baby is born. Since we also have a prime membership for free shipping, Amazon was the way to go for us. But we knew we couldn't do an online only store, as when people shop for baby/wedding showers they tend to shop last minute, which precludes ordering online. So we also registered at Babies 'R Us, they have a lot of locations and you get a 15% discount on completing after baby is born. But where we really wanted to register was Buy Buy Baby. A subsidiary of Bed, Bath and Beyond, BBB is fairly new (at least to my area) but the return policies and product lines are great and high quality. They also accept those precious 20% off coupons that Bed, Bath and Beyond hands out like candy. So we registered there for our benefit. Lastly, we have Target. If I had to use one word to describe Target's baby area it would be: sucky. Target's baby area is tiny, changes over incredibly quickly and their return policy is pretty craptacular too. (Rumor has it you can't return ANYTHING without a receipt, even if it's from your registry). But, Target is the most universally available store and with a large number of friends and family living in small towns, we wanted to make shopping easy on them, so we added some basics there.

One perk of registering for baby is that the brick and mortar stores give you free stuff. I've always been a sucker for free stuff, so let me show you what each place gives you. (This is for the moms-to-be out there, the rest of you, I promise, there's a house/yard post on Thursday, you can quit reading here, if you haven't already).


Reuseable envelope bag, breastmilk storage base, coupons, a newborn-size diaper and breast pads for breast feeding. Meh. However, there is a $20 credit to Shutterfly in there, and that alone almost makes starting a registry worth it.

Babies 'R Us:
Free magazine, product guides, buttpaste, baby catalog, reusable bag, boogie wipes, coupons newborn-size diaper and a registry guide. Eh, not bad, the product guides are kind of helpful.

Buy Buy Baby:
Three free magazines, a $5 off coupon, lotion sample, breast cream sample, boogie wipes, throw away bag, breastfeeding guide, pacifier and a 4oz bottle. All in all, this is the most useable swag bag.

Amazon doesn't give you a "swag bag" of any sort, but their registry is the easiest (for me) to use and manipulate. Plus, it creates a Thank You card list for you. That's handy.

The in-store registering experience I found most comfortable was at Buy Buy Baby. Target is tiny and Babies 'R Us is Hugely Overwhelming (yes capitals are appropriate here). We quit walking around BRU before we even got to the bottles and things because we were tired.

So there. People have asked for help on registering, and now it's available. If you don't care about any of this, I'm sorry, I promise there's a yard post scheduled for Thursday. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go write a yard post to publish on Thursday.


  1. Some friends that you have are extra responsible and have a gift for you already, pre-registry. So... you better like it even if it's not on your list :)

  2. Babies R Us is very overwhelming. I hate going there to buy stuff for my niece and nephew.

    And for what it's worth, I'm going off-registry for your shower gift. :)

  3. To be fair, Babies R Us has a huge online selection and free shipping on larger items. I got a great deal on a very high quality changing table last summer and never had to leave the house.

    I'm not a fan of baby showers (especially the god awful games like guess how round the expectant mother is using this string), but I once went to an "unshower" where a friend who was a surrogate had a drunken bash a few weeks after giving birth to twins. No gifts needed and lots of alcohol. Good times.



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