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Having a baby? Here’s five things you don’t need

You always hear how expensive it is to have kids. In my day job I wrote recently about IRD estimates that it takes hundreds of thousands of dollars to raise a small person to adulthood.

It seems one of the pricier times is before the baby is even born.

When I was pregnant with number one, I was desperate to know what I could buy that would make it easier.

Would a magic gadget help my baby sleep through the night? What bag did I need to make trips stressfree?

Bad news, former me: Nothing you buy makes it any easier.

But here’s some stuff that I think you can definitely drop if your budget is starting to get a bit tight.

A nappy organiser.

It looks super cute to have nappies stacked away in an organiser next to the changing table. But you don’t need one. I never remembered restock mine, so I was always pulling them out of the box anyway, and I found I still needed somewhere to store the nappies that didn’t fit into the organiser – and that was usually under the change table. So that was $40 I could have kept for wine.

A nappy bin.

Some of my family swore by these contraptions. You pop the nappy in, twirl the handle bit and away it goes, with most of the smell and mess contained. But most of them are too small so you end up having to empty them all the time – or if you’re like me, you don’t, and the nappies end up piled on top of the bin until your dog eats them and reminds you you’ve got a problem. And there’s all the plastic – I feel bad enough anyway about using so many disposables, wrapping them in more plastic just seems to make it even worse.  And at $80 just for the bin and  $50 or so for the refills? That’s money that could be spent on something that doesn’t involve poo.

Newborn clothes.

Yep, when they’re born they’re really REALLY small. I had forgotten just how small and when number two came along, she was swimming in a 0-3 months outfit I had thought would be totally fine. But I made it through with just three newborn onesies because within a couple of weeks she was into the next size. They’re so, so little and so, so cute but too many newborn-sized clothes are just a waste of money.

A baby bath.

We had an elaborate baby bath contraption for number one, complete with drain bit so the water could run away through a plug hole. We used it once. It’s hard to wash a baby without getting wet yourself, so I figure you might as well get into the bath or shower with them and make it fun. They’ll grow out of a baby bath before you know it, anyway.

Baby shoes.

If your kid isn’t walking or crawling, they really don’t need shoes. Socks are fine, much cheaper and last much longer.