We all have the friend who didn’t register. Maybe it was her third baby, maybe she already thought she had everything she needed, maybe she just didn’t have the time. Whatever it is, there is no guide to what she needs or what she wants. Sure, we could go out and pick out the cutest outfit for her new bundle-to-be (and maybe do that too!) but one thing I always strive for in baby gift buying is practicality. Yes, I usually throw in a cute accessory or my favorite book, but after having two babies, I am always the one who follows a registry to a T, as I know the mama to be needs those things. So when there is no registry, I’m thrown for a bit of a loop. My goal is to gift something pragmatic (and something sweet!) and I’ve come up with a list of go-to gifts, based largely on what I need – and use most – with my two boys.
Onesies. A new mom can never. have. too. many. onesies. Take it from me, the mom who seems to be scrubbing messes out of every onesie we have. Simple white onesies are so cute on a little baby, plus they make the perfect base layer to keep that little one nice and warm. Grab a few in different sizes – newborn all the way up to 12 months.
Diapers. Babies eat, so babies poop. It’s the one present that you absolutely know will be used. Grab a pack of diapers (in any size really, I promise, they’ll be put to use!) and wrap it up with a bow. I try to always give a pack of diapers with my shower gift – or I’ll drop a pack off when I bring the new parents dinner after their little one has made his arrival!
Books. While toys coming out of my ears may drive me crazy, I am of the mind that my boys can never, and will never, have too many books. Try to pick out something a little offbeat, as they may already own three copies of Goodnight Moon (The Runaway Bunny is a great alternative and such a sweet story).
Pajamas. Another thing babies always need – something to sleep in. When they are tiny, it’s pretty much all they wear anyway, and that mama is going to want to have a lot of options to combat spit up stains, diaper explosions, milk leaks, etc. My favorite are these because they are simple, they ZIP!, and they cover little toes + hands easily.
Breast pads. Whether she’s planning on breastfeeding or not, she’ll need breast pads. You can go with the disposable kind or the reusable, both have their merits, but they are the ultimate in sensible gifts.
Chocolate/expensive lotions/candles/etc. If this is the third baby (or fourth, fifth, etc) the new mom may not actually need much. But one thing she may need, even if she herself doesn’t realize it? To be spoiled. So splurge on an expensive and amazing lotion, or get her the really good chocolate, or grab a gift card for a prenatal massage. Take care of that mama because you know she’s going to be focused on taking care of that baby and not herself.
Crib sheets. Chances are if she didn’t register, she didn’t even think about the crib sheets she still has on hand. After one baby spent a few years on those sheets, it may be time for new ones, even if only to spoil the new baby a little bit. If you know her style/what the nursery looks like, try to tie the sheets into that. If not, you can’t go wrong with a simple, white crib sheet. (Same goes for changing pad covers!)
Baby First Aid Kit. If she’s anything like me, she probably had a great one when her eldest child was born. But after a few years using the pieces up, it may be lacking – and she might not even realize it. Restock her baby first aid supplies!
Dinner. Whether it’s a nice dinner out before baby comes, or a yummy soup dropped off after baby arrives, gift your friend something delicious. I promise, food will never, ever go unnoticed. Bonus points if you make her favorite dish (scour her Pinterest board!).
What else should we include in this list?