How to Not Get Overwhelmed While Registering

confused-woman-420x0If you’re registering for a baby for the first time, and are feeling overwhelmed, fear not. You are not alone.  There are thousands and thousands of products to choose from.

Let’s first think about why you might create a registry when you’re expecting a baby. Babies [can] require a lot of gear that you likely do not have in your home if you don’t already have a baby. True, babies don’t need much, but odds are you don’t have the essentials like a crib or car seat in your possession if this is your first child. At least in my circle, baby showers are the norm – and creating a registry is a helpful way for guests attending the shower to pick items you ‘need’ for your baby.

So, keeping that in mind, there’s a lot of decisions you’ll need to make as to what to add to your registry. First, you need to decide WHAT you want, and then you’ll need to choose between dozens of different styles and brands of each item. Then you’ll need to pick colors, themes, sizes… it can add up to a lot of decisions quickly.

Fear not! I’ve put together a few tips on how to not get overwhelmed when registering.

  1. Talk to someone with a baby. Ideally, you’ll need to talk to a few different people – someone who recently had a baby, someone who has several kids of varying ages, and someone who has a toddler / preschooler and is pregnant with another baby. You’ll get someone who is actively using (or not using) their baby gear. You’ll get someone who is reflecting back on what was used, or not used, when their kids were babies, and someone who is preparing for a new baby with the knowledge of what they used with their other children. Spoiler – just because a certain item exists does NOT mean that it’s a necessary item! Case in point: walking wings. Ask them about what they used, what they didn’t use, what the loved, what they found unnecessary, and so on. Take notes.
  2. Take inventory of your home. It’s no secret that baby stuff is mostly big and bulky. Sure, there are some exceptions, like folding high chairs, but it’s a lot of big equipment overall. Take inventory of your home – unless you have tons of empty rooms and no shortage of storage space, you’ll have to be very intentional in your decision making. Where will that jumperoo go? Where will you store it before your baby is old enough to use it, and what will you do with it once they outgrow it? Will you store it for a future baby or sell it? Where will you store it then?
  3. Put the time in to research. Walking around the store with the scan gun can be a lot of fun, especially if you have time to kill. It’s like shopping without spending any money! Because of that, it’s very easy to get carried away and add things to your registry that are “fun” and unnecessary items. I really recommend building your registry over time – read up on various products that you may be considering and READ USER REVIEWS! You can also check out other people’s registries to see what they added to give you some ideas.
  4. Choose the right place to register. Most stores should offer easy returns and exchanges off of your registry, but confirm this ahead of time. I’d also recommend registering at a store that’s convenient for you to get to – making returns to a website vs. a store is not easy. Other stores offer rewards for registering with them or using a private credit card. Also, consider your shower guests that will be shopping from your registry – try to register at a store that’s convenient for many people. Even though you may love shopping online, remember there are still a lot of people who prefer to hold the item in their hands!

What would you add to the list?

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Tom and Lauren Tate met each other in college and fell in love (there may or may not have been alcohol involved). Years later, they got married, had a baby and now live happily in Southeastern PA with their little boy. Lauren manages the home, while Tom manages projects at a software company. While their interests range from cooking and working out (her) and playing guitar and video games (him), together they manage to maintain a blog, Little Old Home (www.littleoldhome.com).

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