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Monday, September 12, 2016

Friends without Kids: Baby Shower Gifts Ideas for under $50

So you've been invited to a baby shower. This is such an exciting time in the life of the parent to be and you want to show them your love and well wishes by showing up and giving a great gift. The only problem is, what should that gift be? This can be hard for anyone, especially if you aren't close to the mom to be, but it can be especially hard for the friends without kids.

This is when I would first and foremost direct you to the gift registry. You absolutely cannot go wrong by picking up something that the mother-to-be herself hand picked out. Trust me, blood sweat and tears go into curating those baby registries! But, if you insist on not looking at the registry, or there are slim picking on said registry, here are some great gift ideas that the mom to be will love. All of these are items that I have and have bought for other moms.

Anything for 6 months and beyond
When people think baby shower, they think about squishy little newborns. Those teenie-tiny clothes look super adorable on the hanger, I know, but most moms want you to leave them right where they hang. It's not that we don't need baby clothes, trust me, we do! The problem is that for the first baby, 9 out of 10 times, we will get way more newborn and 0-3 month sized clothes than our kid will ever be able to wear! I didn't register for any baby clothes and still ended up with a ton. I returned a bunch and she wore a new outfit every day but we still had clothes she didn't get to wear. She grew that fast!

So put the pack of newborn onesies down and opt for 3-month sizes and up. A set of 6 or 9-month sleepers would be perfect. Or ditch the clothes completely and step outside of the box. Since most people will buy things the baby will need for the first 3-5 months of its life, you should aim to get things for the months afterward.

Teething toys are great. Baby P started teething around 4 months. It was nice to already have a few chew toys ready to go for her. Look for toys with multiple surfaces and textures to chew on.
Spoons and bowls for starting solids are also a necessity that many people tend to forget about when shopping for a shower gift. Baby's can start solids as early as 4 months, although most start at 6 months. Showing up with the cool easy squeeze spoon or other feeding gadgets will surely impress the parents to be.

If none of these wow you, you can also opt for the never fail Training potty or a walker. All of these gifts are great and I'm sure no one will show up with your gift. Many of these items are between $3-$20 so you can mix and match to come to a total that you are comfortable with.

Boppy pillow + pillow cover
This is one of the items I added to my baby registry but no one actually bought me. After the baby shower, I returned some of the unwanted gifts and bought this with my store credit. I love this thing. I mainly used it while Baby P was a newborn and up until she was about 4 months but you can use it longer. There are so many uses: nursing, tummy time, helping the baby sit up and during play time. In addition to that, the price makes them a great gift for when you want to spend a decent amount of money but don't want to break the bank. Even if the mom-to-be wants to return it, she can and will have enough money to get two boxes of diapers or $50 to put towards that fancy stroller
The Boppy Pillow its self is usually around $29.99. Obviously, this is the most important part, but I think getting a cover adds a personalized touch. They come in a bunch of cute colors and can be easily washed if they get dirty. These usually run about $8-$13.99.

So on the high end, this gift will set you back about $44.

Moby or Boba wrap
To those of you without kids the whole wrap/ baby carrier thing is probably strange, but trust me, they are great! This was another item on my registry that no one bought but I knew I needed it from watching other moms use it. It came in very handy when my baby refused to stop screaming unless she was on my body. Without it, no house work would have gotten done in those early months. Now I use it when I want to run into a store and not use the stroller or carry the car seat. It's great! I can fold it up and toss it in the diaper bag and I'm good.
The Moby & Boba wrap are essentially the same thing. The only difference is the name & color options. The Moby Wrap is $44 at Target but it is sold at other stores, the Boba Wrap is $39 at Target. Both are available in 6 different colors. The Moby has more vibrant colors while the Boba has more neutral. I got mine in black, which allows me to wear it and it doesn't clash with my outfit.

This gift will run you $39-$44 total. 

Breastfeeding supplies
If you know that the mother-to-be intends to breastfeed, she will love this practical gift. She will need a box of breast pads, nipple cream and storage bags to start off. I would throw in a nipple shield, because I personally love them, but if you like you can add in a set of bottles.

Lansinoh 100ct breast pads $9.09
Lansinoh nipple cream $8.09
Medela Nipple shield $6.99
Medela breast milk storage bags $13.39
Total $37.56

Or grab a manual pump and maybe one other breastfeeding related item. My manual pump is also one of the items from my baby shower that I use frequently. I usually keep it in the diaper bag just in case I need to pump on the go. I even carry it in my purse when we go on date night without the baby. Nothing ruins a date like leaky boobs so carrying your pump is a must when out without your baby.
Medela manual breast pump $27.49

Here you have a few options. This gift could run you between $37-$40

Bulk diapering supplies
If all else fails, you can't go wrong showing up with a huge box of diapers or two. And don't forget the wipes! A lot of moms are having diaper raffles at their showers now. I did and it worked out great. If not you can bring diapers in bulk as a great gift by themselves or as an addition to whatever else you think of. Ask the mom to be if she has a preferred brand and stick with that. Also, remember to get larger sizes. Like I mentioned before, people tend to buy smaller diapers but we need bigger ones too!  If you buy a large box of size 3 and 4 diapers with a box of 7 baby wipe refills you will knock the socks of the mother-to-be!

A large box of 100+ diapers is usually $24-34. A bulk box of wipes is about $14.
With one box of diapers and a box of wipes you've got yourself a head ache free $50 gift that you know won't be returned.

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