First-Time Parents: Suckers!

Cynthia Dermody
3

wooden high chair
Flickr photo by klynslis
During my first pregnancy, I walked into the BIG BABY RETAIL store to meet my much wiser mom girlfriend, who was helping me register for baby shower gifts. She was late, so I took the gun aimer thingie and, deciding "I can do this, how hard can this be?" took off into the wilds of small plastic things, big plastic things, small soft colorful things, and big clunky things.

I had registered for all of three items before my girlfriend arrived and rescued me, dazed and never feeling more overwhelmed than I had at that moment:

-- A wooden high chair. Because every mom with a newborn knows you need a high chair to feed baby the minute you bring him home, and wood because it's always best to pick the hardest, most uncomfortable material possible to hold a young baby.

-- A crib mobile. Because the zoo animals made me smile. And I liked the color scheme -- blue and green. Never mind that I didn't even have a crib or any idea where the baby was going to sleep yet.

-- Leather baby shoes. Because it's very important to protect a newborn baby's feet. Yes, footwear is the very first thing all new moms should worry about when trying to clothe a person who won't be walking for at least another year.

Like I said, my girlfriend rescued me and un-zapped the items from my list. All except the wooden high chair with the stain and finish that matched perfectly with my dining room set. I convinced her I really needed that.

Rebekah Hunter Scott sums up the First-Time Parents at Babies-R-Us Syndrome perfectly in her new book, Motherhood Is Easy ... As Long As You Have Nothing Else to Do for the Next 50 Years:

You can spot first-time parents a mile away. They wander around the store with those scan guns, tentatively aiming it at every piece of baby gear with a five-foot radius like they're at a shotting gallery. Wipe warmers, pacifier cases, his and hers diaper bags, little tiny paris of Nikes -- they load up on everything they thought they could possibly need, everything they didn't even know they needed, and everything they didn't know even existed.

Oftentimes, that little What was I thinking? voice doesn't speak until months or years after the baby comes, and you discover this little gadget or contraption in one of those boxes you packed up ages ago just to get some of the baby crap out of sight.

I'm getting ready for a big tag sale and I came across that gorgeous utterly useless stylish wooden high chair, the one without any belts or straps, lack of adjustible tray, and so slippery that the baby just slides through onto the floor.

Used once, maybe twice. It will be sitting out in my yard next weekend if anyone wants to buy it.

What items would suggest first-time moms NOT include on their registries?

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