Our baby is nearly ten weeks old already. Not sure where all that time went, but we’re having a blast getting to know him, and judging from his more frequent smiles and laughs, he seems to be enjoying it as well. One thing he’s doing is growing. Very quickly. He was 6 lb, 15 oz when he was born, and he’s 13 pounds now. He’s getting taller, wider, stronger… pretty much just growing everywhere. I’ve already had to alter all the diapers we made before he was born, otherwise none of them would fit him anymore. And he’s outgrown all of the “newborn” clothes that he had. Happily, they were all hand-me-downs… we haven’t bought any clothes for him at all yet.
Watching how fast he’s growing, I’ve come to the conclusion that having large quantities of baby clothes is a huge waste of money and space. Our son has a dresser full of clothes, a bunch in the closet, and a big pile in the crib (he’s still sleeping in our room, so his crib is for storing clothes right now, and it’s our cat’s favorite place to nap). Some he outgrew before he ever wore them. I notice that I tend to put him in the same things over and over – the ones that are easiest to put on and take off. I wash them, hang them up to dry, and then put them back on him, straight from the drying rack. In reality, we probably needed about a fifth as many clothes as we have. I’m glad that most of it was hand-me-downs from friends, some of it third and fourth hand, and yet still in great shape. Their babies only wore the stuff a few times before they outgrew it too.
Most people get more than enough baby clothes as gifts, but what do you do when your baby outgrows all the gifts you got while you were pregnant? A lot of mothers (and some fathers) start to go clothes shopping with a vengance. (a lot go shopping while they still have stuff that they were given – inexplicable, but true). It’s hard to resist the pull of cute little baby and toddler outfits. Little plaid shirts and khaki overalls? Freakin adorable! I’m not immune to it – I know they’re cute, and I can pretty much picture my little guy in any cute outfit I see. So my solution is to avoid seeing them in the first place. I don’t shop in “first hand” stores at all, but I’m even avoiding thrift stores. I’m trying to eliminate clutter from my life, so shopping for fun – even in thrift stores – is not on my list anymore. We’re planning to stay in our current house forever, so we really need to make sure we don’t keep accumulating stuff. That includes baby and kid stuff.
When our son outgrows the clothes we have now, I’ll go to my favorite thrift stores and find several outfits for him. Then I won’t go back again until he’s about to outgrow those. I don’t want to fall into the trap of continually shopping for clothes for him. Because, let’s face it – if I go into a thrift store “just looking” at all the little baby boy stuff, what are the chances that I won’t buy anything? He couldn’t care less what he’s wearing, and we think he’s adorable no matter what he’s wearing. So we’re going to try to keep it all to a minimum. But it will be fun to shop for cute little outfits once he outgrows the stuff he has now…