I am doing this page more for me than for anyone else, but maybe you will all find it interesting.
LAST UPDATED: NOVEMBER 8th 2014
- Pregnancy: First Trimester Trials and Tribulations
- Pregnancy: Second Trimester Trials and Tribulations
- Pregnancy: Third Trimester Trials and Tribulations
- Secret, Practical Advice for First-time Mothers
- Giving Birth via C-Section
- How much it might cost to give birth in Toronto
- Baby Observations Series: Round One, Round Two, Round Three
I live in Canada, land of lovely universal healthcare and polar bears, not the U.S., so paying for doctors, obstetricians, and hospital visits and stays is a foreign concept to me, and luckily, a cost that I have not ever incurred in my life, even with my little stint of living in the U.S.
What I am not listing because it’s free in Canada:
- Doctor’s visits are always free.
- Pregnancy test was free, because I went to my doctor and she tested me right away.*
- Obstetrician visits are also free; I didn’t go to a gynecologist.
- Sonograms are also free.
- Bloodwork and all kinds of tests are also free of charge.
* Fun anecdote: I bought pregnancy tests before going to see her, not realizing she could test me for free, so I returned the tests right after I found out I was pregnant, and got my $20 back.
What I think about before I buy something:
I want to spend as little as possible and accumulate as little stuff as possible.
No cutesy outfits here, or furniture that they’ll grow out of in a year. I’m not interested in accumulating more junk, but I also want to be sure I am adequately equipped to take care of a baby. Immediate convenience versus benefits, and all that.
Anything I buy for the kid, I think about it for the long-term.
I don’t like baby-sized things if it isn’t necessary. Why buy a baby-sized towel when a larger one will do, even if it’s not as cute and a little awkwardly large for the first little while? They’ll “grow” into the towel.
If baby clothing stores had their way, I’d be buying 10 onesies for each of their months, and spending a boatload of money along the way.
Instead, I am buying slightly larger onesies and waiting for them to outgrow it, before putting them into another, slightly larger onesie.
As a result, my purchases will look inflated for now, but I won’t be buying a toddler-sized bed, or a child’s-sized bed as they grow.
I only like organic cotton, natural fabrics and non-Chinese crap I can help it.
Polyester is the P-word in my house, and anything from China, unless I simply can’t do without it, will be avoided like the plague. This makes things a lot more expensive.
Anything I buy for myself, that is in direct relation to having the baby goes on here.
I am tempted to put ALL MY clothing under here, but I will be reasonable and only put things I bought specifically to use as maternity-wear, even though I can wear it long after the kid is born.
I also put things like trying out prenatal yoga, because I didn’t know what I could and couldn’t do with a baby. Turns out, I shouldn’t do anything on my stomach, my back, or try to squish my little one.
We got a good pile of clothing from a family member already.
Thank goodness for hoarders in the family.
We had a pile of baby clothes that we estimate will save us about $1500 (even with our minimalist tendencies). They saved the clothes for 15 years if you can believe that.
Anyway, we inherited most of it, and we are now only buying things to fill in the gaps (newborn stage).
I only bought one book What to expect when you’re expecting which has been quite helpful especially with the first pregnancy (it’s also nice to know how your baby is doing week to week), but these other books are also very helpful if you are so inclined to read them:
- What to Expect the First Year, Second Edition
- French Twist: An American Mom’s Experiment in Parisian Parenting
- Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting
I didn’t agree 100% with any book above, but I agreed with parts of each, which is good enough for me.
All amounts are in CAD$ unless otherwise noted.
Note: I am also only really paying 50% of everything that is listed here, as my partner is paying the other 50%.
FROM CONCEPTION TO BIRTH ONLY
SUMMARY OF PURCHASES THUS FAR
My drinking milk is almost $1000 for the entire 9 months because it’s organic and in glass, and I need about 3/4 of a liter a day, including taking prenatal vitamins. I don’t want the baby to suck calcium out of my bones and teeth just because I am not getting enough…
Under Bed / Bath, are a lot of things I bought for the baby to use for life well into adult years if they want to, like their bed, pillows, room heater, bath towels…
Whatever we had on hand, we tried to re-purpose for the baby, but frankly, we are minimalists, so we don’t really have old towels or old ANYTHING lying around that we DON’T already use for ourselves and need.
Otherwise, we tried our best to use whatever was around without having to buy anything new.
|Health / Medicine||$1,331.31||Pregnancy Book, Prenatal Vitamins, Organic Milk for the entire pregnancy (accounts for about $922), Shea butter for stretch marks, Pads, Thermometer|
|Feeding||$100.48||Nursing Pads, Glass Baby Bottles and Nipples|
|Bedroom||$759.06||Japanese Futon, Pillows (Head and Body), Linens, and Room Heater (All to be used FOR LIFE!!)|
|Toys||$108.81||Teething Toys, Bath Toys and Regular Toys|
|Bath / Cleaning||$98.43||Bath mitts, Bathtub mat, Toiletries (Hairbrush)|
|Diaper||$620.30||Cloth diapers, Disposable Diapers, Diaper liners, Diaper pails, washboards|
|Transportation||$270.12||Stroller, Car Seat, Baby Sling|
|Baby Wardrobe||$84.21||Baby Clothes from 0-12 months (we had the rest given to us from a family member)|
|Maternity Wardrobe||$746.73||Admittedly I did not need to spend this much but I did not want to wear a muumuu or anything made in China|
|Other||$36.95||Baby Memory book and Piano Book|
|TOTAL||$4119.45||During the pregnancy up until the birth of the child (prep for the first year)|
LINE BY LINE SPECIFICS
|$19.90||What to expect when you’re expecting (Book)||Kind of necessary. The Indigo guy found out before anyone else in my family or circle!|
|$14.11||Folic Acid (365 pills)||In hindsight I should have just bought Prenatal vitamins that already had folic acid in them|
|$4.41||Small garbage bags||To be used as barf bags for the plane/traveling|
|$150||Blue Cross Pregnancy-Specific Travel Insurance||For peace of mind.|
|$41.21||Benadryl, Tylenol||Pregnancy-safe medication for allergies and headaches|
|$921.20||1L of organic milk in a glass bottle per day for the entire pregnancy||For the extra 1000-1200mg of calcium pregnant women need a day|
|$16.45||Cedar blocks for the closet||To keep moths away from the baby’s clothes|
|$60.99||Small shredded rubber pillow for when the baby is older and Organic Cotton Wipes||No pillows when they’re a newborn, but as they get older, they’ll want a pillow to sleep on and this is the only place we can buy one|
|$4.58||Organic cotton Bath Mitt||To wash the baby|
|$27.66||2 boxes of Prenatal vitamins||Enough to complete the pregnancy; Will stock up for post-pregnancy if I see a sale|
|$8.48||Organic cotton Baby Hat||It’s large enough that they can wear it even past the newborn stage|
|$22.60||Prenatal yoga (1 drop-in class)||Having done yoga before but unsure of what to change now, I wanted to see the difference. Not worth the expense, I’m doing yoga at home.|
|$56.94||2 X Organic cotton nursing pads and 3 Organic cotton Baby Wipes||We need 24 wipes (face and hands, and butt have to be separate wipes), so we’re slowly buying out the stock of what we can find.|
|$54.24||2 X Bathtub mats||We are using these absorbent mats to lay on top of the changing table instead of buying specific changing-table covers.|
|$40.66||2 x Twin-sized fitted sheets||We are skipping the crib/baby bed and buying a twin-sized 2-layer all cotton futon (firm enough so the baby won’t suffocate)|
|$7.33||Organic cotton footed leggings||We only needed one more in this size range.|
|$3.02||10 x Emery boards||Made in the U.S.|
|$12.56||2 x cotton footed leggings||Filling in the gaps for a newborn.|
|$313.58||J Brand Mama J Maternity Jeans and a Ruched Maternity Top||My first 2 maternity-specific pieces because I hate maternity wear.|
|$327||Aritzia stretchy long dresses||I call this maternity-wear, but really they can be worn afterwards; Bought them because most of my dresses cut into my belly now.|
|$62.15||Thigh-High Black Wolford “Maternity” Tights||Wolford does not do maternity; these are the warmest leggings they have, as thigh highs so that they don’t cut into my bump any more.|
|$28.20||Be Maternity Leggings with a full belly cover||Couldn’t go without these; I caved to have something to wear at home. It’s the last of my maternity wear pieces.|
|$9.91||2 X cotton onesies||The last onesies we needed in the newborn size.|
|$35.58||1 X Terrycloth mattress protector; 100% waterproof||This is for the twin-sized futon we will buy for the baby. One bed, for life.|
|$16.93||Hevea Teething Ring (Similar)||Natural rubber teething ring|
|$28.24||Hevea Bath Toys (Similar)||Natural rubber bath toys|
|$35.59||7 Organic Cotton Wipes||Baby wipes in organic cotton|
|$15.80||5 Washable Hospital Panties||Sounds gross but you need something secure to hold up post-hospital pads|
|$5.62||Evenflo Glass Baby Bottle||The only brand we found so far with glass baby bottles|
||2 sets of Evenflo baby bottle nipples||2 different nipple flow types (medium / strong) Returned them because they’re made in China|
|$11.27||Hevea Pacifier (Similar)||Natural rubber baby pacifier|
|$16.94||Cocoa Butter||Bought more cocoa butter for stretch marks; this is a softer formula that is easier to melt & rub on|
|$40.68||Wooden baby toy||No plastic toys in our house|
|$45.20||Aquapac Scuba diving bag||For dirty diaper changes when outside; really seals in the stink/liquid, etc, as it’s a scuba bag|
|$7.90||Plastic pail||For washing the dirty diapers in|
|$15.70||Natura Maternity Pads (20) and Pantyliners (30)||For fluid during pregnancy *ahem* & after the hospital; they’re biodegradable|
|$52.82||Natural Rubber Pillow||In anticipation of when they’re older and will not suffocate themselves and be able to sleep with a pillow, we bought a natural rubber pillow for them.|
|$157.07||Twin-sized 4-layer all-cotton Japanese futon as a baby bed||This will be their permanent (baby to adult) bed on the floor. Any cover will be securely fastened so they can’t suffocate and we’ll be swaddling the baby.|
|$40||2 organic cotton swaddling blankets||Canadian-designed and manufactured from Oemi Baby|
|$25.89||Natura Maternity Pads and Pantyliners||Stocked up for the entire pregnancy|
|$0||Philips Avent Breast Pump (Originally $56.42)Ameda Purely Yours Breast Pump||The only brand not made in China, other than Lasinoh (their quality looked/felt like crap).UPDATE: Returned this because a friend gave me her old Ameda electric breast pump made in Switzerland|
|$72.29||Braun Thermoscan 5 Thermometer||We don’t even have a thermometer, so we needed to buy one. It’s digital.|
|$22.04||Baby Hairbrush||Made out of goat’s hair and made in Germany|
|$16.26||Lifefact Glass Baby Bottle||Another glass baby bottle with a silicone cover for grip|
|$32.04||7 Organic Cotton Wipes||For the butt|
|$5.93||Baby Mittens||So that they don’t scratch their faces (they don’t know any better)|
|$10.80||More Organic Cotton Wipes||For the face|
|$42.91||Changing pad for baby||Bought the Serta changing pad made in U.S.A.Found it on sale, was originally $54.23|
|$25.99||Washing board to scrub diapers||Scrubbing baby poo is gross. We have a board just for this so we don’t gunk up the machine.|
|$22.59||Cocoa Butter for baby bump||To prevent stretch marks; I already ran out!|
|$82.69||6 organic cotton cloth diapers (Similar)||From Motherease. We are using these as diaper covers instead of plastic diaper covers. We’ll buy pre-folds for padding & diaper liners too.|
|$16.26||Lifefact Glass Baby Bottle||Bought a third glass baby bottle (now we have 3 in total) with a silicone cover|
|$85.02||Bummis Prefold Diapers (6-each)||3 sets of Bummis prefold diapers, going to use these as baby soaker pads|
|$395.49||Dyson Hot + Cool Fan||We bought one for ourselves already, this one is for the baby / future childrens’ room|
|$152.53||MacLaren Triumph Stroller||Scored it on sale for $45 off on Boxing Day!|
|$117.59||Safety Enspira First Car Seat||Enspira 65 Car seat on sale for $38 off the $150 price, but the Guide 65 is very similar. We wanted the Guide 65 but it never went on sale and this was much cheaper.|
|$0 [Gift from Grandma]||2 X Baby 100% Cotton Slings||We’re using the sarong method, video located below. It’s the cheapest and it is not a bulky ridiculous contraption|
|$22.37||4 packs of 6 Bummis cotton wipes (diaper)||We’re using reusable cotton wipes for diaper changes rather than actual disposable diaper wipes|
|$123.60||7th Generation Disposable Diapers (for the hospital); 3 packs of Bummis cotton prefold inserts and 3 packs of Bummis diaper liners||We need to provide our own diapers at the hospital, and we finished buying the rest of the cloth diapers we need (prefold padding for instance) and bio-liners|
|$22.54||Plastic Snapware (tupperware boxes)||We’re using corn starch for the baby instead of talc, plus baking soda for the diapers (deodorizing), soap, etc and needed plastic containers to store these items in as glass would be too dangerous around a baby.|
|$14.46||Natura Maternity Pads||I read that you have to change your pad about 3 – 4 times a day, so my initial estimate of 1 a day was far too low. I need to stock up a lot more of these for post-birth.|
|$11||Baking Soda (stocked up a few packs) and Corn Starch||We are using baking soda to deodorize the cloth diapers in the pail, and the corn starch is in lieu of using talc on the baby’s butt.|
|$10.14||Bathtub for baby||Bought a simple bath tub to bathe the baby. I wanted to use the sink but partner was not on board.|
|$20.96||4 packs of Bummis diaper liners||More liners as I anticipate changing these a lot.|
|$30.22||Delora Diapers for a newborn||Only for hospital / emergency use. We have to provide our own newborn diapers after the first day. Oddly enough, Seventh Generation Disposable Diapers no longer makes newborn sizes or sells them in Canada.|
|$5.40||Bottle Brush||Brush to clean the baby bottle|
|$11.69||Baby Math Kit||It’s so cute, we have a little math kit ready to go for the baby to learn with|
|$11.80||Peter Rabbit Baby Book (Peter Rabbit Naturally Better)||Bought a memory book for the baby (I hate paper but I really appreciated that as an adult, my mother had one for me); Printed in Italy on eco-friendly paper / natural inks|
|$8.25||All-in-One Course for Children: Lesson, Theory, Solo, Book 1 (Alfred’s Basic Piano Library)||In anticipation of teaching the baby piano!|
|$34.34||Prenatals||DHA for the baby’s brain|
|$16.80||Peter Rabbit Baby Book (Peter Rabbit Naturally Better)||Take 2 on the book. I royally effed up the first one. O_o|
THE FIRST YEAR ONLY
SUMMARY OF PURCHASES THUS FAR
We decided to supplement the cloth diapering with disposable diapers but only at night. It was getting to be too much to have the baby sleep, only to wake up in a fright because he was soaking wet.
To have our baby (and us!) sleep better and to avoid changing him every 2 hours, we put him in disposables during the night and cloth during the day.
For feeding, we fed him formula (supplements) when I was unable to produce enough pumped milk to feed him but only twice and then we switched to goat milk as formula had a list of ingredients that scared me.
|Health / Medicine||$99.94||Infant Tylenol; Diaper rash creams/ointments|
|Feeding||$797.85||Goat Milk for when I did not make enough milk to feed him yet|
|Bedroom||$247.25||Had to replace changing pad and pails|
|Toys||$70.00||Pacifier and a used baby swing (purchased online via Craig’s List)|
|Bath / Cleaning||$11.02||Mini Thermos|
|Diaper||$614.26||Disposable Delora Diapers that are Biodegradeable|
|Transportation||$141.36||Chimparoo Mei Tai Carrier|
|Baby Wardrobe||$57.03||Baby Sun hat!|
|Maternity Wardrobe||$||Don’t need this category any more!|
|Other||$529.68||Birth Certificates; Stokke Chair|
|TOTAL||$2038.71||First Year Only|
LINE BY LINE SPECIFICS
|$17.98||Enfamil Infant Formula||When I did not produce enough milk and then I stopped and used goat milk|
|$20.92||Enfamil Infant Formula||When I did not produce enough milk then I stopped and used goat milk|
|$11.02||Thermos||To hold water to wet those cotton wipes for when I wipe his bum|
|$15.11||Delora Diapers for a newborn||For when we leave him with someone else (parents) or at night to sleep through the night|
|$20.30||Delora Diapers for a newborn||For when we leave him with someone else (parents) or at night to sleep through the night|
|$14.68||Medela Nipple Shield||For when I tried to get him to breastfeed directly; I have since given up|
|$11.87||1 Ameda Purely Yours Flange||I broke one; Had to buy a replacement|
|$118.10||Newborn Prefold Diapers (Bummis); Diaper Covers and Delora Diapers for a newborn||The cloth diapers we bought were too large of a size and we needed to buy the newborn size as well which is what we did|
|$10||Natursutten Pacifier||Bought another one|
|$60||Graco SweetPeace Baby Swing||Bought online (used); normally retails for $300|
|$9.93||Infant Tylenol||In case he gets a fever after being vaccinated|
|$50.37||Delora Diapers for a newborn||For when we leave him with someone else (parents) or at night to sleep through the night|
|$60||Birth Certificates||Long and Short Form|
|$41.23||Goat Milk||I am exclusively pumping breastmilk (not feeding directly) and cannot feed 100%|
|$85.89||Breast pump accessories||Extra flanges (I broke a few), extra valves (they split)..|
|$87.21||Diaper Covers||His legs / thighs got fatter but his overall body shape is still too small for the original diapers we purchased which I think are meant for toddlers|
|$39.79||Sunhat||I am starting to walk outside with him and he needs this hat to not burn|
|$131.08||Chimparoo Mei Tai Carrier||I use this carrier to carry him for walks. Will review it after I get used to it.|
|$150.54||Supplemental Formula||This is a cost that is going up and up because I am starting to pump less and less in anticipation of going back to work.|
|$1.93||Vitamin D Drops||Used a $50 gift card I got from a friend to buy these drops for the first year and onwards.|
|$45.49||Diaper Cream||He got a serious diaper rash and started having eczema flare-ups, which is where this cream comes in|
|$8.61||Non-Petroleum Jelly||His skin is getting SO DRY|
|$91.40||Baby changing pad and so on||In our haste to move cities, I left it all.|
|$16.99||Diaper Cream (take 2)||Another ointment because the first one didn’t work, this one treated his fungal diaper rash like a charm|
|$9.18||Batteries||For the pump; I pump at night in a closet to stay as quiet as possible and there’s no outlet there, so I use batteries|
|$155.30||Delora Diapers||I’m starting to get lazy and use these more often when we go out for long stretches. I use cloth at home exclusively but sometimes you just don’t want to change a cloth diaper every half hour when you’re out and about.|
|$4.59||AA Batteries for the pump||Double electric breast pump needs batteries sometimes when I can’t use the AC adapter (no outlet)|
|$5.74||Baby First Birthday Card||I am too excited to be doing this stuff, I bought it well in advance|
|$18.04||Baby Bottle||He needed another one|
|$6.89||AA Batteries for the pump||I burn through theses|
|$17.24||Sunhat||His head got bigger|
|$2.29||Disposable Baby Wipes||For an emergency, if he poos or something and I have no other alternative, I use disposable wipes|
|$463.94||Stokke Tripp Trapp Chair w/ Baby Seat Attachment||Baby Chair! Made in Romania, Baby attachment seat made in USA.|
|$16.99||Diaper rash cream||I have it just for when I see flareups|
|$77.65||Night Diapers||Moved up a size in the Delora Diapers|
|$10.28||Stroller Cover||For the rain|
|$10.28||Second Trash Bin||For the diapers (cloth), I do laundry every other day now|
|$32.01||Life Factory Y Cut Nipples||6 of them, to feed him semi-solids|
|$155.85||Baby Locks||We are baby proofing the ENTIRE place… little bumpers, the whole nine yards|
COTTON SARONG METHOD TO CARRY THE BABY
I hate the idea of baby carriers and baby slings of any kind. This is the simplest, most minimalist method, and you can just buy 100% cotton cloth and do it yourself.
It’s very safe and secure. You can even go farther and knot it to make it more secure so the knots don’t come out, but it has been done for years in other parts of the world.
ARE YOU FROM THE U.S.?
J Money has a similar page from Budgets are Sexy, and has been listing out the cost of the baby so far, which is where I was inspired to do something similar.
He lives in the U.S., so just seeing how much it costs for sonograms and visits, blows my mind and makes me kiss this maple-syrup scented ground a little more fervently.