If you've ever been to a baby shower, you've seen the same gifts over and over again: baby bottles, baby diapers, baby blankets, baby clothes.
Sure, people who are expecting to have a baby-type person enter their lives need those things. But there's a ton of other shit that Babies R Us and other baby-centric retail stores are recommending that you register for that you just don't need. So, put down the baby-wipe warmer and register for this actually useful list of tiny-baby-person essentials instead:
1. Maker's Mark Or whatever your booze of choice happens to be. You need to stock up on your "fixes everything" drink now, before the baby comes. Once babymageddon hits, that window of time your body used to have between "I'm fine" and "MUST HAVE BOOZE DRINK NOW" will close completely. Prepare thyself.
2. Eight thousand D batteries Someone bought you a baby swing, but you didn't realize you'd have to power that thing yourself. If the baby swing runs on batteries, stock the eff up, friend. We still refer to the one time our baby swing ran out of batteries in the kid's second week of life as "What Is Happening Who Would Do This To Us What Just Happened Oh My God No" Day. Don't let this happen to you.
3. Netflix subscription. What will you do during 4 a.m. feedings? Get hooked on five straight seasons of Sons of Anarchy, obviously.
4. A coffeemaker that a dog could figure out You'll need espresso. Nothing fancy, just the drugs. One-button preferable. If you have a smart dog, start training it to start the coffeemaker today.
5. Cup of water next to your bed This will not fail. When you've finally fallen asleep at 10 a.m. after a sleepless night, your phone will ring. It will be a caring, loving, interested-in-how-you're-doing friend or family member. To avoid this, simply drop your phone in the water. It's not like you'll have time to communicate with friends and family via mobile device anymore anyway.
6. Home test for booze in boobmilk Hey, Drunkie. If you're going the boobmilk route and you're also human and you like to drink beer, you're going to want this. It tests your boobmilk's booze level, to make sure you've got food on tap that's safe for the kiddo. Genius.
7. Household cleaning products, preferably organic and delicious. There will be barf. And piss. And poop. And blood. Everywhere. Instantly. And it's not just a baby thing -- it's a once-you-let-a-kid-into-your-house-at-all-and-forever thing.
I didn't believe this until the day that I had to explain to my toddler that "we don't wipe poop on the walls." She was actually shocked and a little embarrassed. She said, "Oh," as if it was a complete revelation and was thankful for this pro tip.
Floor cleaners should probably be organic, as you or your kid will likely be licking the floor at some point. For the kid, it'll be curiosity. If it's you, it'll be the delusions brought on by sleep deprivation.
8. Those bumper corner things for tables and pointy furniture, safety latches for some doors, outlet covers Buy Buy Baby probably has this on their list, but they don't have the right method for knowing where to put the stuff. They recommend that you buy a metric shit ton of it and cover every surface of the house with it. That's not necessary. Just get a trusted friend really drunk, let him crawl around the house, see what he breaks his face on, which outlets he sticks his fingers into, which knife drawers he tries to open, and baby proof that stuff.
Do not skip the outlet covers. If there hadn't been outlet covers in the outlets in that poop story I told a second ago, there'd be poop inside that outlet for life. If all else fails, make bubble wrap clothes for the kid and hope for the best.
9. Paper napkins, plates, plasticware Dishes? Ha. You're cute. Your whole dishwasher is now full of tired baby bottles.
10. Gift cards from restaurants that offer delivery Can you register at Thai To Go? You should find out.
11. Books. Bon Jovi Songbook, Grocery List, it won't really matter as long as you pass on the board books in the beginning. If you start reading a board book to a tiny, tiny infant, you'll start to die a little inside. Don't do that shit to yourself until the kid is old enough to laugh while it chews on the corners of Go The Fuck To Sleep.
12. A sign you can hold up to your friends and family that says, "Nope."
To be used when you hear:
"Did you see on the news about ..."
"Did you hear the newest track by ..."
"Have you seen that movie that came out three months ago that everyone's been talking about?"
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"Do you want to hear me tell you more detailed information about how the baby bottles you've chosen (sub: anything about what you're currently doing with your newborn) are wrong?"
13. Whatever material is used by the mothers of amateur drummers to soundproof the garage Some sort of foam, maybe? Who knows. Whatever it is, at around three months you're going to want to use it to line the doors of the nursery and the door to your bedroom. Then you're going to wrap the baby monitor in it a few times. Then it's time to CRY THIS SHIT OUT.
14. Screw the diaper bag. Get a good backpack. You don't need to register for a fifty million-dollar, one-shoulder strap diaper bag. Get a good backpack and keep some Ziploc bags and extra clothes in it -- clothes for the baby and a shirt for you, too, because poop and pee and barf don't discriminate -- for blow-out situations that will occur as soon as you get cocky and think to yourself, "Going out of the house with an infant really isn't that hard, you guys."
15. See No. 1 Seriously, though. Forget painting the baby's room. Get some booze in your house. Now.