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Minimalist Parenting: Seven Things You Don’t Need to Buy for a New Baby

Becoming a parent is one of the most wonderful, fulfilling things you can do. However, if you are a minimalist, or if you have a tight budget, you may be concerned and overwhelmed by the many baby things that are out on the market. The last thing you want to do is blow your budget and clutter your home with a bunch of baby items you won’t use. Here are seven items you do not need to waste your money on.

1. Bassinet

Bassinets are adorable but can be pricey, not to mention the fact that your baby will grow out of a bassinet in just a few short weeks. Instead, just use a crib right from the beginning. There is no reason a newborn cannot sleep in a crib. If you want to have the baby in the master bedroom for the first few weeks or months, consider setting the crib up in there and move it to the nursery later. Or if you were planning to purchase a portable crib for travel purposes, consider setting this up in mom and dad’s room instead of a bassinet. Portable cribs are also a great option if you need to save space.

2. Changing table

Like a bassinet, a changing table is another unnecessary piece of furniture that will only take up space. Rather than buying a full changing table, consider just purchasing a soft changing pad to place on top of the baby’s dresser and change diapers there. You can fill a dresser drawer full of diapers, wipes and other changing supplies. Once the baby is born, you will probably be surprised how often you opt to change the baby on the floor, on a bed, on the couch, etc. So another option would be just to have a few changing pads to be used wherever you find diaper changing most convenient. These pads are inexpensive, can be easily wiped off and cleaned, and are compact.

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3. Diaper pail

If you are concerned with smelly diapers stinking up your house, you may be tempted to buy a diaper pail. These diaper pails are trash cans with liners. Not only will you be taking up valuable space, but you will also have to buy new liners frequently. Instead, use the regular trash can. Your kitchen trash pail will do the job just fine, especially if it has a lid.

4. Wipe warmer

Newborns hate to be cold, so a wipe warmer may sound like a good way to cut down on diaper change tears. However, these warmers will dry out your wipes. In fact, you may find your wipes so dried out that they become unusable.

5. Different types of carriers/wraps/slings

There are many different types of baby carriers on the market today, and each has its devoted fans. You may feel like you need to buy a front carrier, a back carrier, and a wrap for different stages of your baby’s growth. However, most carriers are adjustable and will fit your baby for months. If your budget is tight, pick one and stick with it. It’s a good idea to buy a baby carrier after the baby is born, so your pregnant belly doesn’t prevent you from trying it on in the store.

6. Baby bathtub

The bathroom is typically the smallest room in the house so adding an unnecessary space hog like a baby bathtub just doesn’t make sense. Some parents feel a baby bathtub is needed because the regular tub is just too big for the newborn. However, if the baby just seems too slippery to bathe in the regular bath (or if you only have a shower in your bathroom), wash the baby in your kitchen sink instead. This option works just as well as a baby bathtub. If you’d like something softer for the baby to lean against, then roll up a towel to place behind your baby in the sink.

7. Nursing pillow

When you first begin to breastfeed, you may feel more comfortable with your arm or the baby propped up. However, there is no reason to purchase an overpriced nursing pillow when regular pillows do the job just fine. Keep one or two nearby where you plan to breastfeed, and you’ll be all set. Likely you already have pillows in the places you will be nursing your baby, such as on your bed and the sofa.

There are plenty of baby products that are helpful and necessary. However, most parents are surprised to learn how little they need for their baby. Once you’ve covered the basics such as a car seat, diapers, and clothes, there is little else you need. By knowing which products will do little more than adding to the clutter, you can devote your space and money on the baby products that make your life as a parent a little easier.

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