newborn, Crunchy Moms, baby, mommy, budget, love, crunchy, cuddles, nursing, diapers, wipes, potty, clothes, sleep, crib, high chair, booster seat, formula, breast milk, car seat, breastfeeding

A while back I wrote an article “10 Things You Don’t Need for Your Newborn.” Today I’m going to write about the absolute MUST-HAVE’s for a baby’s first year! There is A LOT more that you COULD get, but this is a bare-bones minimalist, or Mommy on a serious budget, take on what you MUST-HAVE for your baby.

  1. Love-The MOST important thing that you can give your baby is LOVE! Quality cuddles, calm nursing sessions, and uninterrupted play is the most important thing your baby will get from you.
  2. Diapers, Wipes, or place for baby to potty-Whether you decide to practice elimination communication, use cloth diapers, or disposables, your baby will need a place to go. Check out our post about Cloth Diapering on a Budget.
  3. Clothes-Baby has to wear something… instead of buying new, check out local thrift stores or consignment shops or sales for baby clothes. There are baby clothes everywhere AND buying used will save you money. Just make sure you wash them since you don’t know where the clothes have been.
  4. Place for Baby to Sleep-Crib, bed, co-sleeper, any of these will work. For your cheapest option, bed-sharing will provide your baby a free place to sleep. Be sure to practice safe co-sleeping!
  5. High Chair/Booster Seat– Once your baby starts eating solids, she will need a place to eat. A simple high chair (we like the one found at IKEA) or a booster seat will be your smallest, cheapest options.
  6. Food/Milk-Every baby HAS to eat. As a Crunchy Mom, I highly recommend exclusively breastfeeding. When you decide to introduce solids, check out Baby Led Weaning. This method doesn’t require any fancy tools or preparation, your baby eats what you do! You can also make your own baby food which saves you from buying endless jars or pouches.
  7. Car Seat– If you plan on going anywhere, you will need a car seat. For his first year, you can choose a “bucket” seat that you can remove from the car, or a larger, non-removable convertible car seat that will grow with your child.
  8. Basic First Aid– A thermometer, baby nail clippers, brush or comb (if your baby has lots of hair), and a nasal aspirator (if your baby catches a cold) are all cheap necessities to keep baby happy and healthy.
  9. Optional, but the crunchy in me can’t go without saying it… Baby Carrier-Having a baby carrier makes doing things around the house and outings SO MUCH EASIER. And while you could get away without one, its the most necessary “optional” baby item.

What baby items would be impossible for you to live without?