Sunday, April 29, 2012

Baby Gifts for the Mom of Many

Or, "What to Buy for the Mom Who Has Everything. Or Pretty Damned Near." ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Lest you think this is a thinly disguised plea for gifts, please know that I've already bought most of this stuff. That is, in fact, what prompted the topic. My mom recently asked what I needed for the baby, and I told her I'd already pretty much gotten what I needed. Sorry, Mom. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------- But, it is true that baby gifts are few and far between when you are having your third, fourth, fifth child. People assume that you have everything you need and want by now, I imagine. And that's pretty nearly true. Still, there are always things you need, and always things you'd like. So here's a few ideas--feel free to add your own in the comments section! ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Baby showers with scads of cute baby outfits are pretty unnecessary. Mom probably has plenty of clothes. It's not like newborns wear out their clothing or anything. Unless she has had five boys and is expecting her first girl or something, clothing is probably not needed. But one clothing-like item we've bought for this baby is cloth diapers. This the first time I will attempt two in cloth, so even though I have cloth diapers, I needed more. Find out what kind your mom-to-be prefers. Most of us are pretty opinionated about it. :) Or get a gift card to be put towards the purchase. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Consumable stuff is always a welcome gift. Disposable diapers...even moms who use cloth use some disposables, baby lotions and potions, wipes, etc., are always nice. Gifts of food and freezer meals are always very appreciated. A couple of times a friend who doesn't cook much has given a gift card to a local take-out place, always with an apology that it wasn't a homemade meal. Silly! My kids were thrilled! I was thrilled, believe me! Shoot, if I don't have to cook it or clean up after it, bring it on! Or consider the gift of your time...friends who offer to pick up my older kids and take them to have fun are always a blessing. It gives them a needed change of scenery and gives mom a break too. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Maybe she has a largish piece of baby equipment that needs replacing? If you don't have a "large gift giving" type of relationship, maybe you are part of a group of friends that can go in on something together. By your fifth baby, things can start to look pretty haggard. We replaced our portacrib with Henry. I am looking for another rocking chair for this one. Car seats, strollers, all these things can start to look pretty worn, if not downright falling apart. Also, baby equipment mom considered unnecessary when she had one or two kids might start to look more appealing as her hands become more full. A mom who once scorned baby swings and exersaucers when she was in the throws of "first baby idealism" may find them more appealing when trying to cook dinner with a houseful of little people. Uh huh. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Moderately sized baby equipment often needs replacing as well, just because of the beating anything in a house full of kids takes. Maybe her three year old bent the tar out of the baby seat frame by sitting in it. Or maybe her six year old broke the mobile by using to climb in and out of the crib. Not that that sort of thing happens in this house or anything. Ahem. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- And some things just need replacing with pretty much every child. I always get a new diaper bag for each baby. If the one I've been carrying for the last two or three years has even survived that long, it's looking pretty ragged and tired. I love to get a new one for the new little arrival. I refuse to use it until the new baby actually arrive, packing it with the "bringing home clothes" and taking it to the birthing center. The old one gets thrown out before I even come back home. Similarly, I always need new nursing bras for the new baby. Talk about ragged and tired. Again, ask, or get a gift card...we usually have strong preferences about this item as well. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Something pretty! John's cousins sent a huge bouquet of balloons and flowers after one of our babies. It was totally unexpected and sweet. I love flowers, and no one ever sends you flowers for your fourth baby. It seriously made me cry. Hormones, you know. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ Sometimes there is something sentimental to be gotten for the new baby too. A little tradition that has always been, or maybe one worth starting. Maria always buys a small stuffed something for the new baby, a tradition that started when Jack was born, and even though we need more stuffed animals like we need another hole in the drywall I know she will buy something for this one too. Each baby has gotten a new pretty blanket (but comfy...always comfy...can't abide by some scratchy blanket). And each baby gets a new book. Just to start off right. :) (I am still looking for a book for this baby! Any suggestions?) If you knit or sew or have a talent for crafting, your one-of-a-kind gifts are always special. Our sweet friend Lori made a precious little lovely for Henry. Jack's Godmother made him a scrapbook, a blank one but with pages that she templated herself for me to just be able to plug pictures into...a beautiful gift, I love it dearly. Some pretty keepsake that will set this baby apart from the others is always sweet- something that says, no, we don't really need another something, we have plenty of hand-me-downs,,,but you are special. You are baby #5, and even so this baby-having business is not taken for granted. You are new and loved and wanted right here, now, by God and by us. Even though you are one of many children in this house, you are the only one of you we will ever have, and we can't wait to meet you and kiss your sweet face.


Erin said...

great ideas! i have a friend pregnant w/ number 6 and i want t throw her a "casserole shower" where everyone brings her meals for her freezer, because that has always been the most helpful gift for me. since she already has stuff from the previous babies, i'm thinking of having a teddy bear theme and calling it a "bear essentials" shower... dorky, no?

and car seats are always needed, it seems, since lately they are so big that kids can stay in them for years, so you ca't give your toddler's carseat to the baby since he can still fit in it himself for the next three years!

mysteryhistorymom said...

This was a delight to read, Melanie! Every baby, and I mean EVERY baby deserves to be celebrated! You presented this in such a cute and helpful way.:) Excited about your newest little sweet pea! Lori

Hating blogger right now, too.:(

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