5 Things every new mom needs

Mar 1, 2011 at 10:00 a.m. ET

Let's be honest -- shopping for a new baby can be really fun. So much fun, in fact, that it's easy to get carried away buying bibs, onesies, adorable little blankets, and footie pajamas, not to mention big-ticket items such as a crib, stroller and rocking chair. The truth is you probably don't need all this stuff. Here is our list of the five must-have items:

Car seat

You'll need a car seat for that first ride every baby takes -- home. Conduct some online research in advance and check out ratings for various car-seat makers. You'll also want to double-check and make sure your car seat doesn't have any product recalls on it. And make sure you install it properly. If you're stumped, many Highway Patrol officers or hospitals can show you how, according to Jon Ann Steinmetz, Yahoo Shopping's resident gift-giving expert.


While you could buy a bassinet, a crib and a toddler bed, there are also a number of beds that serve as all three. MyBargainBuddy.com shopping expert Karen Hoxmeier suggests looking into a 3-in-1 crib.


You can get the old-fashioned kind that you tuck under a baby's armpit, or you can opt for the new digital kind that'll give you an accurate ear-reading in a jiffy.


Whether you have a winter or summer baby, you'll use these either by themselves or underneath other clothes. And they're just so darn cute.


The kind of stroller you buy is entirely dependent on your lifestyle and where you live. If you're in the city, you'll probably want a small, lightweight model. If you're a runner, you might want a jogging stroller. Be sure to kick the tires (literally) before you buy one. And check out all the bells and whistles. You don't want to be the mom or dad we've all spotted in the parking lot, struggling to figure out how to open that gigantic contraption.

More from family.com