Having a baby shower? Pass along these tips for gift givers (hint, hint)

Consumer Reports News: May 28, 2008 05:20 PM

Stick to the baby registry. “So many people don’t buy things on the registry. That's how I ended up with a dozen hooded towels!” says Sarah Francomano, the mother of 13-month-old, Jack, from Foxboro, Massachusetts. If you decide to go off-list, don’t forget to enclose a gift receipt so new parents can return the gift, if they need or want to.

Feel free to get creative. Or, go far off-list by buying products babies can grow into. Toddler toys, a rocking horse, a toddler table and chairs, a portable DVD player for long car trips down the road, or gift cards that have no expiration date (The Gap, for example) make popular shower gifts new parents will appreciate as their baby gets older. New moms will also relish thoughtful gestures such as a personal chef or housekeeper for a day, week, or a month, or a gift certificate to a local day spa.

Don’t buy designer duds. Babies may be able to wear them only once or twice before they outgrow them, which inspires new-mom guilt and the sense that the money could have been better spent on diaper wipes or formula.

Don’t nix necessities. If diaper wipes, breast pads and milk storage bags are on a new mom’s registry, somebody should buy them. It might as well be you. If you want more of a “wow” factor, toss them in a wicker basket wrapped in cellophane with a bow on top. Who doesn’t go ga ga over baby baskets?

For more ideas on what to buy for a baby on the way, check out Shower power. Illustration by Cindy Luu.


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