We Registered. It Was Overwhelming.

5.01.2015


I have officially dubbed 2015 "The Year Where I Realize How Little I Know About a Lot of Things."

Example A: Houses

We waited a long time to buy a house because we wanted to properly save up a down payment that would make our Realtor go, "You guys are freaks." Which is, in fact, the exact words she used when we said we had 20%.

However, we also waited so long because the entire house-buying process intimidated both of us so much that we were afraid to start.

We still know nothing about the house-buying process except to recommend that no one ever attempt to buy a house in the middle of storm season in Oklahoma. If we ever have to move after this, I am going to hire one of those giant trailer trucks to come and pick up our house and carry it to our next location. You think I'm joking.

Example B: Pregnancy

I know next to nothing about pregnancy. I have a book called "Your Pregnancy Week by Week," and I'm pretty sure that and Google are the only reasons I know what I do about growing a human, which again isn't much. 

Jordan and I don't actually flip to the next week's section of our book until I'm there, so every stage so far has been a joyous surprise. In the section for week 23, we discovered that my pregnancy mood swings, which seem to have lessened in fierceness, might be soon on the rise again. Jordan, as you can imagine, is overjoyed. (He's probably scared of this happening again.)

Example C: Babies

Apparently babies do come out at the end of a pregnancy, or so I've heard.

And yes, one does need to register for baby things, or so my friends keep telling me so they can actually throw me a baby shower. I in turn asked them if it was appropriate to register for new running shoes and a gym membership. They said not so much.

A few weekends ago (the same weekend this happened), Jordan and I entered the illustrious land of Target blissfully unaware that in approximately .0056 seconds we were both going to be completely and utterly overwhelmed.

Picture the scene: We were in Texas for my sister's birthday, and I decided it would be helpful for my mom to take us to Target and help us kick-start our registry process. Indeed, I am almost 29 and unable to register for my own baby without my mom nearby. DON'T JUDGE ME. I don't judge myself, and you shouldn't either.

My brother and sister-in-law came too, because my family likes to run in herds. We also randomly ran into my dad there buying milk. Literally all he had was 1 gallon of milk in his cart, which made me question the validity of his statement that he just "happened" across us in the baby aisle. 

Right.

So there we were, just me, Jordan, my parents, and my brother and sister-in-law, armed with a scanner phone/gun thing and a collective number of zero knowledge points. My mom turned out to be as helpful as someone can be who last birthed a child 18 years prior.

Also, every time we did find something to scan, I couldn't find Jordan, who had the scanner. I'd shout his name, and he would come sprinting from the direction of the Nerf guns and the Star Wars Legos. This happened at least 3 times.

We ended up skipping the strollers, car seats, cameras, cribs, dressers, and any other large item and went for the pacifiers and the swaddle blankets. Every time my mom would point to something bigger than my hand, I would cover my face and shout, "It's too overwhelming! Something smaller!"

In the end, we did register for a few things, and I feel confident in my ability to return most of the stuff we get for gift cards, which I will then use to pay for my running shoes.

Because at least when I go into a running store, I know what the heck I'm doing in there.

People with babies! Any must-have registry items? Clearly we don't know what we're doing.

44 comments:

  1. This is hilarious! And I agree totally! My two "must-have" items? A running stroller....I love the bob revolution. Annnnd a baby carrier (for me this was a MUST!) For me early on, it basically gave me my life back....and u can be hands free! I love the solly baby wrap, the catbird baby wrap and the ergo. All awesome. Solly is great for infants and the other two are great for older babies and toddlers.

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    1. Hurrah! I did register for both of those. I must not be a complete idiot! There is hope for me yet :)

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  2. It is SO overwhelming! I remember trying to calculate exactly how many outfits of each size we would need to register for... Which was totally silly because people loooove buying baby clothes and just bought what they wanted to (in abundance, I might add). Haha.

    As for useful things...
    Swaddleme sleep sacks (totally a lifesaver in the early days. I buy them for every new mom)

    We also love the Tinylove 3-in-1 Rocker Napper. It's a seat AND a bassinet so you're saving space and it's so versatile. Both my babies slept in there in our room until I was ready to move them to the crib.

    Lots of people will say you don't need an infant bathtub, but I'm too paranoid to put my slippery newborn baby in the sink so I love having one.

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  3. I've been seeing a lot about rock'n'plays. They were not around when I had my kids, but they look awesome. Lots of sheets, mattress pads, and changing pad covers. An exersaucer will come in handy later (Christmas gift?). A high chair that you can attach to a chair (saves room).

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  4. I only registered for things online. I knew I wouldn't have been able to handle registering in person.

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  5. It is like we spend 12 years in school learning state capitals and algebra which never ever come into play when real life is happening. When Fredrik and I sent in my first set of paperwork to be a resident in Sweden we actually high fived that we did it without getting help from either of our parents!

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  6. If you're having a shower before the baby is born I would add some things to the registry that aren't exclusively for the baby: gift certificates, laundry baskets, a blender etc. Some people (myself included here) are brought up to be uncomfortable with the thought of giving baby gifts before the baby has arrived. I'm always floored that this doesn't come up in the blog world because it's not that uncommon in my real life.

    FWIW it's easy for me to get around when I'm not invited to or can't attend a shower - I'll simply give the mother a gift certificate for dining out/massage/house cleaner, depending on what she'd like. But showers, and especially showers that make a big event out of gift opening are trickier. When baby does come home I do bring something from the registry. And if the registry is either taken down or totally picked over by that point I'll opt for outfits in the 6-12 month range.

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  7. My favorite registry items were the Moby wrap and Ergo carrier. We received many, many, many blankets. I had one swaddle blanket that I used all the time.

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  8. Regardless of what you register for, plan on getting a ton of clothes, especially since you're having a girl. ;) I took a friend that had a child within the last few years with me to register in store, and then I spent a ridiculous amount of time obsessively adding, changing, and deleting things on the registry from the comfort of my own home. You're doing just fine! Hold on to your receipts, and hopefully most people will include theirs as well. I didn't get many receipts, so I had to make my Target returns in two large batches because they do have a limit.

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  9. I almost spit out my coffee laughing about Jordan disappearing to the nerf guns and legos. Ben still does this every single time we go to buy baby (now toddler) supplies. I have to point out the "only for ages 3 and up" label countless times before we leave the store. I seriously think buying toys might be the only reason he wanted children. As long as you have diapers, swaddle blankets and onesies, you're good for a month or two at least!

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    1. I thought for sure people would think I was just making that part up to make the story funnier, but that was not a lie! Seriously, every time I needed him to scan, he was nowhere to be found. What on earth? Good to know I'm not alone with a crazy husband, I guess. ha!

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  10. ha! I can't imagine! If it's as overwhelming as registering for a wedding (which I imagine it is because there are necessities), then I will be bringing my mommy too!!!

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  11. I totally understand the overwhelming ness of baby registering. When we were getting Elizabeth I was like, "We have a crib and some diapers, aren't we good?" My sister-in-law was like..."No." And she dragged me to Target and made me register for a tun of stuff. I just bought the "ingenuity" high chair they have at Target for Hunter, and I like it more than any of the high chairs I had for John and Elizabeth. If you are planning on formula feeding, don't forget to grab at least two of those formula dispensers and a basket thing to put your bottle nipples in the dishwasher. Little things, but pretty much all I can think of. There isn't a whole lot of baby stuff that's indispensable IMO.

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  12. You need to get the "Baby Bargains" book...it saved my sanity, seriously! It lists all the products and gives every brand a grade based on quality/value/parent reviews, etc. It's an awesome resource. Just be sure to get the most recent one bc they update it every two years....it has a purple cover!

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    1. Amen all over this. Baby Bargains saved my sanity!

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    2. Thank you for the tip! I hadn't heard of this book.

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  13. i have never bought a house, been pregnant, or had a baby... so i am completely in the dark! registering for our wedding was fun.... but i imagine registering for a baby to be overwhelming! there are SO MANY choices and you realize you're going to have a live human being to take care of & how much stuff they actually need!

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  14. I cannot recommend Baby Bargains enough. It helped us immensely. You definitely want to register for a car seat, rocker/swing/whatever you decide you have room for. Also, burp cloths, sheets, changing pads, maybe a floor playtime mat type thing. Bottles, even if you decide to breastfeed. Sometimes mama needs a break, and baby Bum being ok drinking out of bottles will help when/if she goes to daycare. Don't register for clothes or diapers, you'll get those anyway.

    It is overwhelming! Who knew such tiny people needed so much stuff!?

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  15. Hahaha! Well, obviously you guys need to be registered for Nerf guns and Legos! It's only 5 or 6 short years before the baby is going to need those things! Yes, all for the baby. Just like the running gear. I mean, obviously the baby needs you have those things so you can keep exercising and make sure the baby is healthy. And worse case scenario, if you haven't managed to figure out diapers by then, you can always make use of the running gear! Multi-purpose!

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  16. I haven't been in any of these boats yet, but they overwhelm me from afar so I can only imagine!! I am continually amazed by how much stuff a baby needs though. So crazy!

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  17. jon and i felt overwhelmed the first time we registered - babies r us - and i remember gawking at baby gear and trying to figure out a) did i really need it all b) how did it work and c) how did people afford all this stuff? it was funny going back when i was 9 months and realizing a) i had most of the stuff now b) i knew what everything did and c) you get so many gifts that you eventually have everything you need :)

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  18. Go you guys for having 20% down!!! We have a similar plan, that once were out of debt to have a HUGE down payment. It would honestly make me happy to hear someone call me a freak in that case ;) I'm glad you guys registered for some things. Your man totally sounds like mine. Hanging in the toy section ;)

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  19. You guys are awesome :) I regret not having a larger down-payment when we got our house- we DEF didn't know what we were doing. But you can't go back, and now we're just paying our mortgage down which feels good to! It's good to be freaks sometimes :) Registering is crazy, I'm sure. I think I'd rather bring a recent mom-friend than Jared.... haha, he would definitely end up looking at blu-rays and nerf guns.

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  20. Haha! Oh goodness, that does sound rough. I loved the mental image of Jordan running over from the toy aisle, though. ;) And the image of your "herd" of a family moving about Target together.

    I am a big believer in registering for things you won't buy for yourself. Sure, sure register for the other stuff as well. The stuff you need like plain onesies and plain burp cloths and bathing supplies and diaper rash cream. But don't forget about registering for some "luxury" type things that you don't really NEED, but also that you know you won't buy for yourself.

    I'm not a mom, but in my years as a nanny I've discovered a couple of things that I know I'll register for some day later:

    Boogie wipes - you don't need these. You really don't. You can use a regular wipe if necessary. But these things are kind of miraculous. They work on snotty noses SO much better than regular wipes. And they are gentle on baby noses. I always buy a pack for every baby shower.

    Swing - nearly every baby I know has loved his/her swing. It's something that is used often in the first months of your baby's life and then less and less as they become more mobile, but it's SO worth it in those early months when you need your hands free for something, but your babe is fussy.

    Adorable Stuff - your kid's bodily fluids will end up all over every outfit, blanket, and crib set that you buy. So having some plain every-day, can-easily-go-in-the-wash-on-high-heat items is important. But having some lacey hand-wash-only items are precious. And the occasional completely frilly, ridiculously impractical outfit... totally worth it. Especially if you're not paying for it. ;) It gives you something adorbs to put your kiddo in on those few occasions when you want her to look extra precious. Just be prepared that she will most likely spit up all over it eventually. ;)

    Boppy - you could also use a "my breast friend". Whether you plan to breast feed or not (clearly I didn't breast feed the babies I nannied), the Boppy is awesome. Once kids are taking their whole bottles, it's a great spot to prop them up with the bottle and hold them stable while they eat. It was also one of Mallory's favorite spots to nap. And of course, if you do choose to breast feed then it's super helpful for that.

    Compact Diapering Kit - I LOVE these. As soon as Mallory was old enough to go out for several hours without needing a bottle or change of clothes (she spit up a lot when she was little), I quit carrying the diaper bag. Instead I left one of these in the car and it was AWESOME. It's just a little clutch that can easily be tossed in another bag if necessary, or left in the car. I can't tell you how many random places I ended up changing diapers because I had this with me (and it's nice to be able to lay her on this instead of a public restroom changing table). Again, this isn't NECESSARY. You can easily do without it. But I loved having it!

    Baby Carrier - I loved the Ergo personally, but I've also seen the Moby do amazing things. Either way, it's so wonderful to have the baby close by, but also be hands free!

    I'm sure there are so many other things that I'm not thinking of, but these are the first ones that popped in my head. So yeah, longest suggestion list ever from someone who isn't even a mom, ha!

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  21. It is so overwhelming! I was reminded a few times that really you don't need a whole lot for a baby! You still of course want it all because you have showers and it's fun to get lots of things, but your baby will be fine no matter what stuff you choose! The big stuff is overwhelming though. I looked online before we went to the store for the big stuff - carseat, monitor, stroller, so we didn't have to stress about them in the store. And I asked friends on facebook/blog what kinds they used and really trusted other peoples research :) We used the citi mini stroller and I love it. A graco carseat, and infant optics video monitor (got it on amazon). I'm also glad we had a moby wrap and used that a ton at the beginning. We got our furniture on amazon too - so much cheaper!!! Hope that helps some :)

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  22. Bwahaha! Too funny. It is overwhelming. BuyBuyBaby is the worst. And 95% of that crap is totally unnecessary. And folks will tell you, "This makes life with Baby sooooo much easier." but they're lying. It's just clutter. Babies need very little. You've been out of the country. You know. You've seen. Get a really good baby carrier like a Pognae or a Tula. Wear that baby! Eventually you'll want a stroller. Get a carseat that doesn't click into the stroller because babies need holding, not being carted around in a bucket 90 million hours a day. Invest in a good pump if your insurance doesn't provide one for you. After that, Baby Bum will let you know what she likes, and you can go shopping after she gets here with all those gift cards that are for HER not your shoes. Ha. :) Ok, that was all really bossy, but I'm just not into an over-abundance of stuff that will hardly be used for babies. Sorry not sorry. :/

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  23. You need:

    A place for baby to sleep

    A way for her to get home(car seat)

    A way to feed her(pump/breast feeding supplies/bottles)

    And stuff to contain her waste products(cloth or disposable)

    The rest is just fun stuff that you don't NEED so, no worries :)

    LOL at your dad and his milk.

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  24. I think Courtney up there is a genius. Angel's grand evil plan is to raise our babies with the least amount of buying of stuff ever, since when we moved last year we decided to become "minimalists." I'm also very convinced that given the culture we're moving to, we won't have much of a chance to even make choices--people will just give us what they decide that we need and we'll be fine. Not an announcement or anything but there's already a stroller and a crib inside the apartment we're moving into next month-haha!

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  25. I am as clueless of you, so I won't be of any help here.
    Although, I have to agree with one thing: go for the running shoes, Amanda. Baby only needs you. You need the shoes.

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  26. I am definitely clueless when it comes to things like this and would definitely be the one bringing my mom along, too. Which would then mean the rest of my family because we, too, shop in herds. Speaking of which, it was actually quite relieving to hear we're not the only ones who do that! :)

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  27. Please take notes so when I have a kid you can give me all the 411.

    I never knew registering for a baby would be so complicated. Maybe we as Americans over complicate it? I don't know.

    I do agree with everyone else that a Bob stroller is good. My brother and sister-in-law have one and it is worth the money.

    I agree with Rachel in her comment above to register for the big things that you would never buy yourself. They do say it is more blessed to give than to receive so girl let people get that big blessing and give to you =)

    Lastly, I need your registery list. or if you would prefer a gift card I can do that too!

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  28. The mental image of your entire family in Target goofing around and finding your dad buying milk while you try to register is pure gold. You are my kind of people.

    As for suggestions? Well, I completely sucked at my wedding registry and sent a ton of that stuff back...so I've got nothing. I do know that I recently went to a baby shower and ended up buying the mom the same book as someone else (The Going to Bed Book), so maybe you need a book registry too. Did your head just explode?

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  29. Oh girl. YES. To absolutely everything. We started the house hunting right when I got pregnant. It was so overwhelming, and then the morning sickness came and we completely gave up. Also, kudos to you for saving the 20%. Now that we've pulled back, that's what we eventually want to do.

    I knew nothing about pregnancy. I was terrified HR was going to call me in due to my insane google searches.

    Registering made me want to sob. My MIL bought us a car seat & stroller right after we told her I was pregnant. It's not at all what we would've picked out, but I'm so grateful she did it because it was one less choice to make. I've learned so far that there are never enough burp rags, so register for those. Everyone will give you clothes regardless, so don't worry about that. Diapers, wipes, changing pads, and hooded towels are good, too. IF you plan to breastfeed, I love the My Breast Friend pillow. I personally hate the Boppy, but a lot of people love it (conflicting advice! so helpful, right?). I would highly recommend one of those.

    One thing we did that I would recommend was register for a convertible car seat. My MIL bought us the infant car seat, but she'll out grow that within her first year. We went ahead and registered for one that works for an infant and will eventually turn into a booster seat when she's much older. that way we wouldn't have to worry about buying one down the line. We use it as the back up car seat in my husband's car, and we'll transition it to mine once she outgrows her current one.

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  30. That would be so overwhelming! I would have to take all of my mama friends with me to help. A few things my friends say they can't live without nowadays: moby wrap, vibrating chair thingy, a nice video monitor...and that's all I can think of at the moment. :)

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  31. One of my friends (when she was pregnant with her first kid) started crying in BabiesRUs, because it was so overwhelming. As a side note, she told me not to go there, because it was attached to the ToysRUs and I would not like it and I could just order my gift online, LOL!! Good luck!!

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  32. This is pretty refreshing because I'm painfully aware of all the real life things that I know absolutely nothing about. Maybe someday I'll be an adult. As for now, I'm just making my way through each day and learning a little bit along the way. We have to register for wedding things soon and we're pretty clueless. We also don't really want anything because we live in a small apartment and don't need much. We'll see how that adventure goes. Best of luck with yours! :)

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  33. I get overwhelmed just buying baby gifts in Target off of other people's registries, so I can't even imagine registering for myself. Too much stuff.

    You'll get there though! And I like the idea of returning things for gift cards. Hello new running shoes.

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  34. Man... I got a little anxious reading this because I realized how much I DON'T know about any three of those things either! And that's considering I work with babies/children every day. 20% down payment is SO killer! I'm so proud of you guys and super inspired! That's our goal one day and I may have to talk to you so that you can remind me that it's worth it. Also, I would probably take my mom to register with me too because she has a good sense of what is a NEED and what isn't. If weddings are anything like babies, culture is going to tell you that you "need" a lot of stuff that you actually don't. I can't make recommendations on what to buy, but I will have to say that a wipe warmer is the most pointless thing I've ever seen. If I change a diaper in the middle of the night, you'd better believe that I use that cold wipe to wake them up so I can feed them at the same time! Good luck!

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  35. You are freaks for having 20% down but so much smarter since you don't have to pay the PMI or mortgage insurance which adds a few hundred to your mortgage. Babies done come with instructions!!!! How do people decide?! So many choices too.

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  36. Ha ha! This made me laugh because I just went through all of the baby registry stuff a few months ago and I felt just as clueless. My husband refused to go to any baby stores with me while I was pregnant (he told me that it was creepy for adult men without babies to go into baby stores) so when friends and family kept pestering us to create a registry he discovered http://babyli.st/ and we made our registry from home. He seriously worked on the list for 2 hours, and when I checked to see what he had added the only thing he had put on the list was a baby toothbrush. Seriously.

    After that I dragged him to Babies R' Us.

    So far, my "must have" baby product is this jogging stroller and car seat combo http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AHVR1QI?tag=blvisitor-20 and http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AHVR4KG?tag=blvisitor-20 . The car seat snaps into the stroller and the car very easily, so if your baby falls asleep while driving, you don't have to wake her up---just take the car seat out of the car, snap it into the stroller and go about your business. It's great!

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  37. Hahah oh man registering is so stressful! I actually never went to the store to register for baby stuff because to me that is the worst thing ever. I actually don't like shopping in general (which I know is weird considering I post about clothes a lot). Anyway, you should sign up for Lucie's List emails and check out their registry guide. It was the BEST one I found and talks about all of the things you don't need to bother with and talks about price points and stuff like that. Also, they send weekly email updates which are BY FAR the best information I found out there... I could go on and on about it. And the writer is really funny and sarcastic which I really appreciate because people get way to serious about baby crap.

    Anyway, if you have any specific questions let me know! But I definitely agree with what a lot of people said - babies don't need much!

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  38. i don't have babies - but i do have a crazy brain where i research and plan all the things so i do know exactly what i will be buying / registering for when the time comes. if you have any specific questions, i'd be happy to help, which sounds weird because why would you ask someone without a baby but hey, i told you, i know stuff. i also get a lot of info from 2 of my friends who have kids (and different parenting styles, so if they like the same stuff you know it's gotta be good!).
    the thing is, all the lists all over the internet will tell you different things, because - unfortunately - every baby, every parent, every product is different and what works for one won't work for the other. isn't that comforting? not.

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  39. I totally understand the feeling. I got so overwhelmed when we walked into a store to refister that I almost just walked out. There are so many options, and it feels so easy to "do it wrong." I'm going to return to this post and read the comments religiously, in hopes other commenters offered advice on baby products!

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    1. They did! There are a lot of great suggestions in the comments, so I hope you can check them out. I'll be returning to it myself :) So thankful for blog friends to the rescue!

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