But despite the aisles and aisles of pink and blue fluffy baby "must-haves" screaming "BUY ME!" you won't find anything you actually need for your new baby in a big box store. I'm not having a baby shower, but if I were, here's my top five list of what I would register for if only I could:
1. A freezer's worth of Trader Joe's everything. Barring TJ's, delicious meals prepared by loving friends and family, especially beyond the first two weeks post-birth. I can only handle frozen burritos and pizza so many times before I might start crying. Oh, wait - I'm already crying. Hormones!
2. A maid. Okay, maybe not a live-in - but maybe two or three appointments during the first two months to do things like scrub the floors, sanitize the bathrooms, and anything else I'm not going to have time to get to. Which is everything.
3. A playdate for my older child that doesn't involve me. Come to my house and spend an hour tearing apart our playroom with my daughter and your child(ren) while I feed the baby and take a nap or a shower. Alternately, hold my screaming newborn for an hour while I get a chance to play with my toddler so she remembers who I am.
4. Gift certificates and subscriptions to Netflix, Hulu Plus, audible.com, iTunes, amazon.com, and anything else I can use on my iWhatever to stay informed, educated, and entertained during marathon nursing sessions. My brain is going to turn into mush anyway, but I might as well go down fighting.
5. A wet nurse. Or 6-pack abs. Surprise me.