If you think it's sad that Jews don't celebrate Christmas, did you know we are also not supposed to have baby showers? I think it's a "don't count your chickens before they hatch" thing. Literally. And although I have never been a very religious person, I did not want to mess with anybody upstairs when it came to giving birth.
So I didn't have a baby shower. I asked for gifts to arrive after I announced Mazzy was born.
No fun, I know.
Now all this seemed reasonable until about nine months into my pregnancy when it occurred to me that I would be bringing a baby home any second and I didn't have a single onesie or a diaper stashed in a drawer. I remember having a minor meltdown where I screamed that Judaism screwed me and my unborn child and then briefly considered storming Buy Buy Baby and purchasing everything in sight.
A good friend calmed me down by making a list of the only things I would absolutely need on Day One. I gave the list to my mom and she assured me that all those purchases would be waiting for me by the time I came home from the hospital.
You know what? Turns out newborn babies don't need all that much. No matter what that fear-inducing overly-prepared crazy lady from Pregnant In Heels told you. (Are they renewing that show? God I hope not.)
Below is a breakdown of practical tips and bare essentials for first time Jewish parents, laid back or lazy pregnant women, fellow Rosie Pope haters, people who have a sneaking suspicion that Wipes Warmers are ridiculously unnecessary, and my friend Bailey who is due in November.
NURSERY: The baby sleeps in your room for the first few months. You don't need a fully-decorated nursery immediately. Mine was empty. I decorated the entire thing from start to finish by shopping online while I was on maternity leave. The only thing I did before the baby was born was have it painted. Wild Aster from Benjamin Moore, if you must know. (Click here for pictures of Mazzy's room.)
CLOTHES: Do not buy a lot of clothes. Especially newborn clothes. All they will be wearing for the first few months are onesies and pajamas and they ruin EVERYTHING. Also, for the majority of babies, the newborn clothes fit for a very small period of time. Plus most people will get you clothing as gifts— in all different sizes. I didn't need to buy Mazzy any clothes myself until she was almost ten months. (Then I went to town.)
GROOMING: Hospitals supply you with a crapload of stuff, all of which you are allowed to take home with you. Pacifiers, receiving blankets, nasal aspirators, baby combs, etc. We were even advised to take the plastic bin that all the stuff came in because it is the perfect size to wash the baby for the first few weeks. Which you should do without soap or shampoo until week three.
SAFETY: A baby has to be able to move before they are in any real danger of pulling a piece of China out of a cabinet and smashing it over their head. You have at least five months to baby proof. And I don't care how many times Pregnant in Heels cut to the knife block on the kitchen counter to illustrate how unsuitable a home is for a child— you can keep it. Children can't reach the back wall of a countertop until they are around 18.
Finally, below is a list of the only things you absolutely need to have on Day One. No paid endorsements. Just the things I owned and used.
THE BARE ESSENTIALS BABY REGISTRY
Boppy or My Brest Friend (if breastfeeding)
Humidifier (humidifier is recommended to reduce SIDS)
Hat and Socks (so strangers don't yell at you)
Fan (recommended to reduce SIDS)
Pack of Onesies
Graco Snugride Infant Car Seat
Pack of Burp Clothes
Bassinet or Co-Sleeper (with one fitted sheet, nothing else)
Changing Pad and Cover
Graco Snap & Go Stroller Attachment
Aden + Anais Muslin Swaddles and/or Kiddopotamus Fleece SwaddleMe
Diaper Genie (or something similar)
Hooded Infant Towel and Washcloth
Nursing bras (i
f you are in Manhattan— The Upper Breast Side is the place to go)
Soothies Pacifiers (you can also just use the ones from the hospital)
Baby Grooming Kit
4 Ounce Bottles (if you are exclusively nursing, you may not need a bottle for a few weeks)
Medela Pump in Style (I didn't use the pump until about three weeks in)
Baby Sling (I used mine religiously from the beginning even though they are not recommended until 4 months)
Lanolin Nipple Cream (added by popular demand!)
Here's a link to this registry in the Mommy Shorts Shop. Did I miss anything?
You have until the end of today to enter the Citrus Lane Baby Shower Box Giveaway.