Baby Gear... Then and Now

It is funny how your needs and wants change when you have a second baby. With Keating, I did everything by the book. I took countless hours to perfect my baby registry by researching consumer reports, asking friends for suggestions, and trying things out in store. What stroller would be the best bang for my buck? What pack and play would fit our needs? How many kinds of bottles should I purchase to try?
With Archer I didn't register for anything, he was our second baby and we didn't need anything new. Things that we didn't have or things that we wanted, I planned to purchase myself. Most of our things that are our favorites I eventually learned from experience the first go-round. A few of these are new to us though.

Diaper Bag #1- I searched high and low for the perfect diaper bag with Keating. I decided on a Kate Spade tote style diaper bag. This really is a great bag but it wasn't a great bag for me. It has a few pockets in the inside and came with a cute kelly green changing pad. I wasn't crazy about this bag because it wasn't deep enough. I am not an organized person, in case you haven't noticed, so this bag became a dump all. I am considering selling my tote. It is lightly used if you are interested.
Diaper bag #2 - Knowing that I had to begin carting junk for two kids, I needed more organized space. My bag has to fit diapers, wipes, a change of clothes for a potty training toddler, 300 matchbox cars, snacks... the list goes on. I decided on the medium sized bag with short handles. My Lands End bag has kelly green straps and our last name embroidered on it. I. LOVE. THIS. BAG. The pockets are the perfect depth and surround the inside of the bag. The straps dont dig into my arm when I have it loaded to the max. If it gets dirty, I just toss it into the wash. Best part is, I think I only paid $25 dollars for it. I highly recommend this bag.
Swaddler- For Keating I used the Swaddle-me swaddles and then sleep sacks when he was older. My cousin let me borrow a Miracle Blanket to try for Archer and I love it just as much. We have started to use the Miracle Blanket at night because he can't Houdini his way out of it. The Swaddle me is still perfect for naps.

Swing- A swing is something I never initially registered for. I had heard a lot of babies didn't like them, so I decided to borrow before I bought. We used my sister in law's swing with Keating and sadly it stopped working. Thankfully we had been given an old travel swing similar to this one that has held up through countless children, and now my two. I couldn't be happier with my free swing. It works great, travels easily, and both boys have loved it. I don't think a big fancy swing is always a necessity, and we don't have the room for one in our house. This has been perfect.Paci's- After trying every brand in existence, Keating was a fan of the Nuk Genius (naturally the most expensive paci they sold) I kept and sterilized all of Keating's paci's that he didn't like... call me cheap or gross but those things start to add up. Archer isn't much of a Paci man, but when he wants one, he likes the MAM's.
Formula- Archer drinks Similac when we have manufacturer's coupons, and when we don't he drinks Costco's Kirkland brand. This formula is the best and he loves it. Thankfully neither of my kids had any formula allergies becauses this is the most affordable kind to buy.
Bouncer- We didn't register for a bouncer with Keating. I didn't see a need for one when we had registered for the Lamb Chair. I quickly realized that the Lamb Chair was only good for the first few weeks. After they are done wanting to be snuggled, they want to move around. I decided we needed a bouncer for Archer and randomly picked this one up in Wal-Mart. I didn't read a consumer report, ask for reviews, or research fabric patterns. It was the cheapest one, and it works just fine... even if it is kind of ugly!
Bottles- For Keating we tried the Dr Browns bottles, the Nuk bottles, and finally ended with pricey Coddle-life bottles. I was an admitted bottle snob, I never even considered trying these cheap Gerber bottles until I signed up for Mom's On Call. They explained that these bottles work just the same as the expensive brand's, they just dont have all of the marketing behind them. For only $3.99 for a three pack, I decided it was worth a try. These bottles work GREAT! All of the air bubbles float to the top, just like the fancy bottles with the straw in the middle. Best of all, when the dog ate one... I didn't have a cow, because I was only out about $1.25. Great deal in my opinion!
Diapers- We used Target's Up & Up diapers with Keating, and they are all we have used with Archer. I can't say enough great things about these diapers. I love that they are plain polka dots, I hate characters on things. Also, the every day, non sale price, is cheaper than Costco diapers ON SALE. They average about .10-.12 cents cheaper per diaper than Pampers and Huggies. Highly recommend.

It is funny to see how things change, and the little bit of clarity that you gain from being a mom. I know my choices aren't for everyone, and everyone has their own opinion of what babies need. This is what worked for us.


  1. So glad you wrote this blog! Being a soon to be first time mom is information overload. It's always nice to hear honest opinions from real moms rather than facts and statistics from all of the research!

  2. That's great to know about Target's diapers. I am going to use them as gifts at showers now. I hate characters too!


  3. This was so fun to read! I did the exact same thing when buying/registering with my first (and only). Granted, I do feel as though we selected carefully and used everything we registered for, but I think I'm going to give those Target diapers a whirl! Thanks for the tip!

  4. Also, I'm curious how much you'd ask for the Kate Spade bag if you decide to sell?

  5. Thanks for the advice! I love posts like these. I am registering now and it is very overwhelming. It sure is nice to know what people liked and didn't like! :)

  6. I couldn't agree more. I have friends that have registered for new toys, high chairs, towels, bottles etc. and all for their second baby!! We used what we had from our first and my daughter, who played with trucks and tractors for the first year of her life, is turning out just fine! I also think that some people have a hard time letting go of brand name items ...you know, just in case someone who asks actually cares where it came from or how much it was!

  7. I'd also like to know how much you're asking for the Kate Spade bag, should you sell :)

  8. OK I am going to have to try those Target diapers for sure! I have heard good things about the Costco brand ones too and have been wanting to try them. As for the diaper bags mine is busting at the seams! I end up just using a huge beach bag this past summer!


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