When you announce that you're pregnant people suddenly start giving you all sorts of advice that yes, might be useful, but also sometimes leaves you a little miffed... "don't spend money on this, spend it on that!", "oh you don't need that", "You won't be able to live without this"
Now that the child is 6 months old, I know tonnes! I'm full of wisdom, busting at the seams with wisdom! I'm no expert by any stretch, but the last few months have taught me a few things as well as baby wrangling on a budget. This isn't advice, I'm just sharing a few bits.
Below is a few things that I couldn't live without, a couple of bits I didn't really need + a few things that would've been nice to have.
1 . Marks and Spencers.
Basic everyday baby stuff isn't cheap in this country and Marks has been amazing! These cotton vests come in packs of 7 and have built in hand mitts, I know, amazing right? It gets better, Marks also offers free postage for orders over $50! When I was pregnant i had grand ideas of dying these all sorts of colours, but I ended up working right up until her birth. That kid, always early.
2 . Bouncer.
This was an amazing buy, just get it you won't regret it. 6 months in and we're still using it. I got my one at a second-hand store (brand new too!) but The Baby Factory also sells them.
3 . All day night clothes.
I spent the first week in a blur, it was crazy. But I also only wore maternity singlets, bras, button up shirts and dressing gowns. I also brought a few XXL mens flannel shirts from Kmart once she was here, I just wish I'd stocked up on more of the above before I gave birth!
4 . Reuseable nappies.
I brought a small amount of these ones before she was born and did a couple of pre-washes, little did I know that a couple of washes weren't going to do jack. It took 4 washes, 2x24hour soaking and 2 hot washes to get them absorbent! They are great now though. A friend mentioned that buying used nappies off Trade Me is a good idea as you know they are absorbent and work. The second lot I brought were off Trade Me and had been worn by two children and are amazing! Second-hand is the way to go! Also, pocket nappies are my choice.
5 . Muslin.
Best thing I have brought (and been given) is muslin wraps. We didn't wrap Eilidh, but used the wraps for cleaning up spills/sick. We had them stashed all over the house! I now cut them up and use them as flannels in the bath. We purchased a couple 'pretty' ones to use while we are out and about and the dark colours hide sick quite well.
6 . Long socks.
Eilidh was born at the end of summer and lived in long socks and short sleeved body suits - much easier to change a new born 10 times when you only have to unclip one set of domes and not 10 in the middle of the night!
7 . Bassinet.
I'm so pleased that we got a basket bassinet, she slept next to me in her basket until she out grew it at 3 months old. Our one also rocked so when I was trying to get rid of the 1am feed and then the 4am feed i just leaned over and rocked her back to sleep. So good! I use to take the basket outside and pop her on the table it was super useful and I highly recommend getting some form of a bassinet!
8 . Highchair.
I only brought our one a month ago, when it was needed. I'm glad I did as it's meant I've only been tripping over it for a month and not 6.
9 . Baby Sling.
This sling was AMAZING when she was a new born as it meant I could do normal things, like the supermarket shopping, visit cafes, make dinner and I even did a couple of photoshoots. Sometimes she wouldn't sleep so I'd put her in the sling and bam! she would sleep. Get a sling of some sort, baby wearing is amazing, do it! I brought this sling in the UK years ago for my cousin, but the Natures Sling is similar. I now carry her around on the hip with the aid of this sling.
10 . Teething.
We have lots of sucking friendly things stashed around the house so that we always have one at a moments notice. I also give her fridge cold, large slices of apple. Teething toys are expensive, but wooden pegs and cold fruit aren't!
11 . Bits.
As soon as the word 'baby' is attached to anything another 50% is also added to the price. I didn't get a change table or a rocking chair because of just that. Instead I brought a change mat and put it on a set of dresser draws, easy. I have a rocking chair that I thought was a little silly but it's a stunning Danish chair that belonged to my grandparents and I felt that Eilidhs room would be perfect - and it needed to go somewhere! It's come in handy 6 months later so if you wanted to get one I wouldn't rush. My baby friends have mixed feelings about nursery chairs, just make sure you have a comfy sofa as you will be creating a bum groove in the first few months!
I hope this non-advice helps!