It's national "All Krista's friends have a baby" month. You didn't know that was a thing? Apparently it is because I have 5 different people to who need baby gifts this month, and they are all having boys! (Yay!) When I have the time, I try to give baby gifts that are one part handmade and one part store bought. Lately that means that one part is knitted, and the other part something cute and cuddly. Local shops are one of the best place to pick up high quality useful baby items. Plus, as always, there is an added benefit of shopping local.
Brookings has a gem of a baby and maternity shop. Bundle of Joy Maternity and Baby Boutique (Click here for their Facebook page) is right on 6th Street in front of the movie theater. It has some seriously cute baby clothes and some stylish maternity offerings.
Most of all, it features some of my own favorite brands when I had newborns in the house. Boba carriers in stock (I love love babywearing). Sophie the Giraffe (what is it about that french giraffe that kids love?), aden + anais swaddle blankets and burp cloths, and Ruffle Butts (as seen on my husband and I's favorite show, Shark Tank). Loads of items for breastfeeding and fetal monitoring are also available.
When I had my daughter, I did the typical big box store registering/shopping trips. I got the big items on the "must register for" lists. However, I realized after I had been a mom for a couple of months, that the "must register" items available at big box stores didn't always live up to the hype. For instance there are baby carriers. You go into register, you see something like a Baby Bjorn, you think "hey, everyone uses these things, I should get one." You get one and realize your kid thinks it's form of torture, and you don't use it. I started to do some research on baby wearing when I had to fly alone with my 18 month old and just like that I started to learn about some awesome babywearing options. I got a stretchy wrap and a Ergo and never looked back. So, do yourself a favor and skip the must have items other people tell you to get, save yourself time and money, and visit a local baby shop. They have the expertise and experience with the newest products on the market. A Ergo might not be what is perfect for you, but a local business can talk to you about what will be perfect.
In addition to having some real quality products in the store, the owner Laura is a joy to talk with. She is helpful and enthusiastic about her work. When I mentioned that I had been in search of Jellycat stuffed animals (which is the best stuffed animals, in case you're wondering), she pulled out her iPad and wrote down the brand. Her packaging is also gift worthy in itself.
So check out Bundle of Joy if you're expecting or are also celebrating your own "All My Friends Are Having Babies" month!