Things for MIL to bring from the US, and things that can wait until we go home 6 weeks after EDD — The Bump
International Bumpies

Things for MIL to bring from the US, and things that can wait until we go home 6 weeks after EDD

Hello all! I'm new to this, so hopefully I do this right, but I moved to Italy almost a year ago and am due in November. We won't go back home until December for Christmas, but we have several family members and friends visiting this summer and all of them want to know what they should bring for us.
Our families and friends are also insisting on having a baby shower for us when we get home, which is so sweet and I feel very lucky, but I really have no idea how to do this whole international registering thing, and everything here seems to be so much more expensive... We have decided we will pay the airline fee for an extra suitcase on the way back and try to have extra space in our suitcases on the way home, but I don't anticipate being able to fit any large items in the suitcases

So, my questions are

1. What things are essential to have as soon as the baby is born?
That way I can have them sent to friends/families houses before they come visit, or search for the big items here (hoping IKEA will have the furniture we need without breaking the bank, but we are penny pinching and saving for what we need)

2. What are things that can wait until the baby is about 4-8 weeks old, but are essential in general?

3. Does anyone know of any multi-use type strollers available in Europe? Italy tends to not have quite as many options but we can ship from other european countries more easily than from the US, and I assume we need this before coming home?

Thanks for your help! I've been looking at the Babies R Us registry checklist, but it's a little overwhelming and I don't know if all of the things listed in the "must-have" section are actually must-haves.

Re: Things for MIL to bring from the US, and things that can wait until we go home 6 weeks after EDD

  • Hello! I'm in a very similar situation. Due end of September and planning on going back to the States in November or December. I'm in Rome, Italy.

    I organized my registry on Amazon (dot com, not dot IT). I love it because there is EVERYTHING and all the reviews to help me decide. Then I got crazy with the organizing. I put notes on stuff I need for newborn. Notes for stuff I should buy in Italy. Right before my shower I'll move everything left over to either Buy Buy Baby or Babies R Us. I think that will be easier for my family. But for me, I like seeing it all in Amazon.

    Everything I can, I want to wait for my shower. And there is a lot of stuff that a baby needs but a newborn doesn't. Everything related to feeding, potty training, teething, most bedding (I'm keeping the baby next to my bed at first, so I don't really need the crib set), toys, miscellaneous.

    It's a big question: what do I need the first 3 months? As best I can figure, I need...
     * a way to bring the baby home from the hospital / to the airport (travel system)
     * a way to give the baby a bath 
     * a way to change the baby, both at home and on the go
     * a plan for sleeping with the baby
     * a way to feed the baby, feeding pillow, pump, bottles, formula, depending on your plan
     * something for the baby to wear, and lots of changes, but remembering everyone is going to give cloths
     * stuff for me, like feeding bras, stretch-mark cream, a girdle for after, possibly some special undies (I haven't researched that yet)
     * I also got a newborn wearable carrier, nail scissors, 3-month+ headphones (I'm thinking for the plane), lots of blankets, and some cute stuff that was small and I just wanted. 
     * supermarket stuff like wipes and diaper cream

    I try to remember that women have babies in Italy every day. Italy even has a lower infant mortality rate than the US, so they have to be doing something right. If I need anything that I don't have, I'll buy it here. Prenatal is the biggest store, but there are a few. 

    My mom is bringing over most of that list. Bulky things that would take up too much suitcase room I'm buying here, even if it costs more. I figure that will be the changing pad-pillow, breastfeeding pillow, all furniture, breast pump, and the little bathing tub. Also stuff that gets plugged in, like a humidifier. And, naturally, the supermarket stuff that I could never predict how much I need. Also liquid/gell things are the hardest to bring over since they are heavy but not allowed in carry-ons.

    Ikea has lots of baby furniture. Also Mondo Convenienza (like Italian Ikea). Prenatal has lots of baby stuff and lots of package deals. I've furnished our apartment with used antique furniture and plan do do the same for the nursery. I got everything either at Mercatino ( they are franchises and they're everywhere. Or at, like Italian Craig's List. As for rockers and bouncers and vibrators, I may regret it, but I'm getting none of it for now. Space is a premium. 

    The things that are still stressing me are... 

    (1) Diapers. I want to do reusable, but that seems to not be a thing here. I could get them from the US, but then I would need to know all I need from the start. And commit to certain brands/styles all up front. 

    (2) Travel System. I hate how different they are here. Even Chicco has a 100% different line here in Italy opposed to the US. You should visit a Prenatal store and look at them. You're probably looking at a "Trio" system ("Travel System"). That is the car-seat/carrier, the stroller, and a bassinet. I think the bassinet is stupid, but they all have them. The carseat-carrier and the bassinet will probably both had hooks so they can be used in a car w/ just the seat belt (no base). The carseat-carrier should also have an optional base for your car that's sold separate. Inglesina has all their info in English ( ) which I found helpful to read. But they are the most expensive brand. I think I'm going with the Chicco Sprint, it's really light weight and narrow which are the two factors that matter most to me. Plus it's really cheap, which is a nice bonus. I'm asking my in laws to buy the stroller, so I wasn't looking at prices :p

    This stuff is definitely cheaper in the US (and having things bought for you at a shower is even better). At first I was really stressed that I needed it all for a newborn, but it turns out toddlers need a lot of stuff too! So there will be plenty left for the shower. 

    As for getting it here, on major airlines, you each get a checked bag, a carryon (overhead), and a personal item (underfoot). Coats don't count as anything. Your lap baby still needs his/her own ticket, which United sells at 10% the lowest available fair (pretty reasonable considering how unreasonable everything else is). But that also means Baby gets her own checked bag and carry on besides yours! Also a car seat and a stroller can be checked / gate-checked for free. Put your heavy stuff in the carryons and your bulky stuff in the checked bags. It really is a lot of space. I brought all my wedding shower stuff over that way; 

    You can also request a bassinet on the plane. There are only a few seats where they can do the bassinet, and I think they are the bulk head ones (extra space!). Paying for an extra bag is a good idea, there is no cheaper way to get 50lb of stuff from the US to Italy. I'm also considering paying the extra fee (I think it's only $15) to book over the phone and make sure I have all the baby stuff worked out with the airline (I'm also traveling with our cat, it's gunna be a sh*t show). But you can just call and ask them this stuff. That's what I did. There are a few other threads here on International Bumpies about flying, I won't blab on any more. 

    Let me know if you find out anything else! It's nice to meet someone in such a similar situation. Sometimes it feels really difficult and like I'm the only one dealing with this stuff. Good luck! 
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