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So you're going to have a baby...

Congratulations!! Once you get through the "Whoa, I'm going to be a mom / dad" to "Can I do this?" to "Okay! I'm ready!" your next thought should be "What do I need?" Some will give you horrifying lists that will cause your head to spin. As Essential Baby List of 2 young children I have figured out that you don't need as much as the lists say, and you certainly don't need it all at once. I have broken my list down into age categories: 0-3mos (thing you should have on hand when baby comes home), 3-6mos, and 6-12mos. A word of advice: your baby doesn't care if the onsie she's wearing cost $5 or $50, so save yourself some money and put it towards the important stuff, like college tuition!

0-3 Months
Must haves:

- Place for baby to sleep: crib, bassinette, cardboard box (kidding) etc
- 10 Receiving blankets - for swaddling baby or cleaning off spit up
- 5-10 onsies - good for under layer in winter, or only layer on hot days
- 5-10 sleepers
- Nail clippers & hairbrush
- Baby soap/shampoo
- Washcloths
- Diapers & wipes
- Car Seat
- Bulb Syringe
- Diaper rash cream
- Thermometer
- Bottles/Formula/Breast Pump (depending on your choice)
- Bunting suit for cold days (if needed)

Nice to haves:

- Diaper Bag
- Baby soap
- Other clothes
- Baby Monitor
- Stroller
- Baby Sling
- Play Pen
- Change Table / Dresser
- Rocking Chair
- Baby bathtub
- Toys, etc
- Swing
- Soothers

TIP - Put all this on your gift registry and you won't have to buy very much!

3-6 mos

- More clothes (assuming baby has grown)
- High chair
- Safety items (baby gate, outlet covers, etc)
- Age appropriate toys and books
- Bibs (a lot of bibs)
- Baby spoons
- Baby cereal (ie: Pablum)
- Jolly jumper

6-12 mos

- Yes, more clothes!
- Baby walker
- New carseat (once baby reaches Federal recommended age/weight limit to move to forward-facing seat)
- Even more books & toys!