When to buy your own registry items — The Bump
Baby Showers

When to buy your own registry items

This isn't really about a baby shower but not sure where else to put it. I'm a few days shy of 34 weeks with my first. I'm not having a baby shower (at least not that anyone has told me anyway), and no one has asked about our registry or bought us anything. We went out at the 28 week mark and bought the bare necessities in case of an early arrival (real possibility), but now it's getting far enough along that I'd like to have things more ready so we don't have to worry about buying things after she's here. My question is, when should I just buy the things off the registry on my own? I read all these posts about baby showers and getting gifts, but we've only gotten some homemade blankets from my MIL and some hand-me-downs from my SIL. We're not hurting for money and are happy to buy our own things, just wondering if it's normal for people to wait until the last minute/baby arrives to give things or if I should just shrug my shoulders and use the completion discount to get everything off my registry.

Re: When to buy your own registry items

  • meggymemeggyme
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    If it will make you feel better to buy it now, then do it. Keep the receipts and you can always return or exchange it if someone buys it for you.
    ME: 32  DH: 32 DD1: June '16 DD2: March ‘19 :::: Married since 2011 :::: USN Wife ::::
  • I found that a lot of the traditional things you get at a baby shower were either: 1) not really all that necessary after all, 2) for older babies, or 3) actually less useful than the non-baby version of the same type of item.  So, if you don't have all the stuff you registered for prior to the baby's birth, it's probably okay.  I think there's actually some wisdom in waiting until you see how you like to roll as a parent before buying a lot of stuff.

    For example, I was SO excited to put a swing, a high chair, a diaper disposal system, and a diaper bag on my registry.  I got all 4 as gifts well before my first child was born.  But all of these bigger items wound up collecting dust in my attic. For some reason neither of my kids liked the swing, so it fit into category 1 - just something that turned out to be unnecessary for my family.  I wish I had borrowed a swing to try it out. 

    The high chair fit category 2.  Why did I need that before the baby was born? I had plenty of time to shop for a high chair while I was on maternity leave.  By the time my kids were 3 weeks old, I was eagerly looking for an excuse to get out of the house every day.  A trip to Target or the baby store would have been a great break at that point.

    The diaper disposal system and the diaper bag are things that other new moms told me were MUST HAVE items. But for me they were both category 3s. I found it easier to put stinky diapers directly in our outside dumpster than to constantly hassle with diaper sausage link chains and expensive refills.  I had no idea what to look for in a diaper bag when I registered around the 24 week point of my first pregnancy, and wound up with a bag that was great... except when full it would not stay on my shoulder.  I wound up gutting some of its parts and just using a regular backpack, which, if not so cute, always stayed on me.  It's been many a year since my youngest was fully potty trained, and I still favor backpack style purses to this day.

    So buy what you absolutely need, and add products as you need them in the following days.
    High School English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

    DD, born 9/06/00 -- 12th grade
    DS, born 8/25/04 -- 7th grade
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