Saturday, February 6, 2010

The BabbyMama Buys: Bumbos, Boppies, and the Buzz

Lounging in the Tripp Trapp

Way back when I was pregnant, I set up everything I needed to write a blog that I dreamed of calling "The Buy Nothing Baby." In my mind, we'd get plenty of things as gifts, have other stuff thrust upon us by people not having any more kids, source the rest on Freecycle and Craiglist's freebies board, and then do without all the trappings of babyhood that seemed so ridiculous at the time. Good plan in theory, yeah?

But then Paloma came early, which meant that the shower that was in the works for me, as I found out later, had to be put on hold. There was no way of knowing when Paloma would be coming home or when she'd be big and strong enough to cope with a party in her honor. Long story short, the whole presents-from-a-registry thing kind of fell through except for the smaller stuff. Still awesome, but not all the necessities one thinks one needs. Oh, we'd registered for everything from nursery furniture to a stroller, but that's the sort of thing family usually buys, and they were too blown away by Paloma's arrival to be thinking about that sort of thing.

So we have this baby and no crib or anything much else to go with her. What we do have is some secondhand gear -- thanks Jeff and Mandy! i=It turns out we can't exactly use some of it, though. Hospitals, it turns out, have rules about car seats. They'll let you take a standard baby home in a secondhand seat as long as it looks road-worthy, but they don't let the preemies out until they've had a good look at your car seat and they know a thing or two about car seats in the NICU. The first big thing we bought? An infant seat that could accommodate babies weighing four pounds and up. It's a nice infant seat, too. Not the fanciest you can buy, but nothing too shabby, either.

What else did we buy in those early days? Clothes because Paloma being early meant that her clothes were just a bit seasonally incorrect. Disposable diapers, because she was too small for the cloth diapers we wanted to use. All sorts of different sorts of bottles because we wanted to find ones that would facilitate (not f*ck up) nursing. In that vein, we bought a boppy and a nursing stool. The Bumbo seat that our EI therapist suggested we get. A secondhand bassinet that turned out to be part of a huge recall, but it didn't matter since Paloma was sleeping with us anyway. All in all, it wasn't much, at least compared to the people who buy everything and everything for their wee ones.

Fast forward, and there's going to be snow on the ground soon. Our secondhand stroller is getting the job done, but I'm an all-weather walker so I ask my own mamman for a Quinny Buzz for my birthday because it has fat tires but doesn't weigh a gajillion pounds. All right, *we* didn't buy it, but I did go out and buy a Quinny Zapp shortly thereafter because I was so spoiled by having the infant seat stroller base in the car all the time.

Dad bought us a crib, but just our luck, it may have been part of the giant crib recall. We never exactly found out, but the drop-side mechanism came undone enough times for me to have my suspicions. So there we were in the upscale baby stuff outlet warehouse looking at fancy-pants transformer cribs that turn into toddler beds and full-size beds for when the baby isn't a baby anymore. We found one we could sort of afford that was also pretty and had inexpensive conversion rails.

Okay, I'm thinking, maybe I can change the name of that blog to The Buy Everything Baby.

Oh well, such is life. The funny thing is that so many of the things that we either bought ourselves or were given that felt really unnecessary or even a bit luxurious have become some of my favorite things. That infant seat is still her car seat at a year into her life and has an upper weight limit of 30 pounds, not that she'll fit that long. Paloma loves riding around in the Buzz with its coordinating sleeping bag attachment and rain cover in almost any kind of weather. The Zapp is lightweight and folds down to nothing. And the Tripp Trapp? Oh goodness, I love it so. And yet, the earliest that Paloma will have her own room will probably be this summer. We have no nursery suite... never had the fancy bedding or all the silly junk that will only decorate their lives for so long.

Is that good? Bad? We kind of like having Paloma in our room still even though there are plenty of people who think we're nuts. The payoff is that I get to take my baby out walking in the dead of February and she stays toasty warm.


  1. Yeah, I was a less is more person as well - although we did buy a thing or two. Including the crib which I found on Craigslist with the mattress for $50. (Score!) What I find odd is that I go out with Ev and only have my little diaper bag with me. And it is rarely stuffed, if it is it's only because I'm taking him to grandma's house for her to watch him and I want to make sure he's got books and toys. Every time I head of out of the house and I feel so light and unbowed by oodles of junk I wonder what the heck those tv shows and movies are talking about when they show parents taking a carload of crap everywhere they go once they have kids. Is it the same for you or am I freakishly lucky in the 'dragging crap around' department?

  2. Nope, not just you! All I ever take is the diaper bag, which even though I'm making a slightly deeper one, just has diapers, wipes, a snack, etc. in it. I think that they start wanting more stuff when out and about as they get older, but by then the hope is that they can carry a bit themselves!

  3. Isn't it amazing all the things such a little person needs??

    Droppin' in from SITS

  4. What a sweet baby you have : ). Precious!

  5. Just loved this post... coming from SITS. Random, but are you going to Bloggy Boot Camp in Baltimore?

  6. Kat: Baltimore is a bit out of my way just now, but I wish I could!

  7. My rule with my baby is Expect The Unexpected! you never know what's going to happen...I'm a new follower.

  8. That's funny, with our second we kept thinking "We won't need ANYTHING except for boy clothes and bedding..." but we keep thinking of more things we "need" for his birth, when he comes home, things he deserves just because he's the second baby and should get some stuff of his own...

    Tara at

  9. Oh, Miss Paloma is a cutie pie! (o:

    I wanted to have the "buy nothing" baby, too; but then we had to deal with acid reflux and screaming colic around the clock. We ended up with 3 swings, a crib, a bassinet and a pack & play, a bouncy seat, a bumbo and another infant seat, 2 high chairs, 2 tummy time mats, about 6 different sleep positioners, 3 mobiles, and a crapload of light-up toys to try and keep his attention. Sigh.


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