One of the best parts of having a second child is that a large amount of the anxiety that came with the first is replaced by a peace that only experience can bring. Additionally, if you’re planning for another child you will likely already have the baby items needed.
Here are seven things that you would do well to keep for future use, so that when baby number two (or more!) arrives, you have more time and money to focus on the new addition.
A crib that has been well-taken care of is a crib that can provide a safe space for little ones to dream for years. When your first baby has outgrown the crib it’s worthwhile to take the time to ensure that the crib is stored properly to make it’s reconstruction as seamless as possible.
Take a picture of how it looks assembled. The easiest way to ensure that the end goal is clear when it’s time to put the crib back together, is to get a visual aid. A picture will decrease confusion when dealing with a pile of components that all resemble one another.
Designate pieces as you disassemble. When you take the crib apart, label the hardware as you remove it. This step doesn’t have to be overly complicated, but labeling where the hardware goes will be a major timesaver.
Use a plastic container to keep hardware with the crib. Place the hardware in a plastic container along with the photograph and the assembly instructions, to be stored along with the larger pieces of the crib frame. This will ensure that when baby number two comes along, reusing the crib is an easy process.
Using a baby carrier with your first child is a matter of convenience, but using a baby carrier with a second child is a matter of necessity. A baby carrier is a shining example of an item that should be stored and saved for a second child, because it’s value will not only remain the same, it will increase. With a carrier, you’re able to keep your little one close while still being able to use both hands to tackle life.
Some carriers have the added convenience of coming with their own storage sack. However, for those that don’t, it’s important to store the baby carrier in a sack or box that will keep the straps from becoming tangled or broken, the body of the carrier from becoming deformed, and the color from fading.
Many parents, when awaiting the birth of their firstborn, receive and purchase hefty amounts of baby clothing; the pull of miniature dresses and button-downs is often more than anyone shopping for a new baby can resist. But after baby outgrows the clothing, it can be tempting to make space for new, larger sizes by giving outgrown clothing away.
According to Katie Adams from Investopedia, the average amount parents spend on clothing each month for the first year of a child’s life is $60, which amounts to a total of $720. Thus, if you’re planning on having another child, there is a clear financial incentive to store and reuse baby clothing.
If you’re truly considering downsizing a child’s wardrobe, there are two primary reasons to do so. The first is to move clothing with sentimental value into long-term storage. For example, a baptismal dress that you want to keep pristine is a good candidate. The second way to strategize downsizing is to throw out the clothing that is no longer in good condition. If the amount of wear and tear would keep you from giving it to a friend in need of second-hand clothing, go ahead and part ways.
Toys can pile up quickly, but like clothing, they’re also quickly outgrown. Parents know that most toys have a targeted age range, and the toys that last longer than that range are a rarity. For that reason, parents are notorious for purging in an effort to keep order within their home.
However, a second child means that those toys will not be without a purpose. While the firstborn may have moved on long ago, a second baby will look at everything with fresh eyes. The key to not losing your mind amidst a mountain of outgrown toys is thoughtful and organized storage. Get rid of the toys that no longer work, and store the rest in containers that are labeled with the appropriate age range.
Every baby is different, but one of the few constants is that babies love being rocked. Holding and rocking a baby for long periods of time is the best way to add to new baby fatigue, and end up with a sore back in the process.
Thus, keeping bouncers, swings, and rockers is a smart choice. It’s best to give the item a thorough cleaning before storing, and to have new batteries on hand for when the second baby makes their arrival.
Much like a baby carrier, a stroller is a friend of the parent with multiple children. Strollers save energy, free hands, and secure children. Not only do they make your job easier, they provide space for kids, often in unfamiliar places. A stroller can become a hiding place or a napping spot. Why get rid of that?
Making a well-informed investment in a quality car seat is one of the best things you can do for your kids. The right car seat, used correctly, can literally become a lifesaver. Thus, it makes sense that if you’ve spent considerable funds and put a lot of research into your chosen car seat, you would keep it.
It is important to remember that some car seats should be replaced. A car seat involved in an accident should always be replaced immediately. Additionally, the general rule of thumb is that a car seat older than five years should be replaced. Not only because materials made of plastic may become less stable over time, with sun exposure, but also because new technologies, which can provide better safety, are continually being introduced.
However, if the infant seat used by a firstborn is in good working order, then keeping it for reuse is a smart way to ensure that you have the funds to get a new one for the next stage your firstborn enters.
Planning for children puts everything in perspective, and when you’re planning for children after your firstborn there’s the pleasure of knowing the joy to come. Not only is there the anticipation of future happiness, but there’s less anxiety, and more baby stuff!
Instead of a large shopping list, if you’re planning for more kids you can instead find a convenient place to store what they have to utilize down the road! Doing so will not only save money, but it will also save time, which of course can then be directed to more important things, like family.