New parents know babies can be expensive, especially if you purchase expensive baby gear. Baby cribs these days can cost over $300, with the average being around $200. Even if you shop at discount stores like Wal-Mart for your baby’s crib, you’re going to pay at least $150. There are affordable alternatives to paying out the ear for your baby’s sleep quarters, though. There are also ways to at least put the expensive off for a few months while you save more money.
Some parents chose to sleep with their babies. There are many benefits to this. Not only does it save money, sleeping with mommy helps regulate a baby’s breathing and heart rate. It also makes late night nursing sessions much easier. You can share your bed with your baby for as long as it works for your family. It costs nothing for your baby to sleep with you. Just make sure you follow safety guidelines to keep your baby safe. A device such as a nest or bedside rail can also help.
Arm’s Reach offers bedside bassinets in various colors for less than $150 at most retailers. The mini-cosleeper is an even cheaper crib alternative. These attach to your bed, with the bedside rail lower and nearly at the same height as the bed. They are suitable for twin babies to sleep in, too. With a weight limit of 30lbs, they are an alternative to cribs that you can use for several months. Cosleeping with your baby not only saves money but allows you to get more sleep, because you can respond more promptly to your baby’s nighttime crying.
Moses baskets are suitable for very young babies, up until the time that they can sit up. They will run you less than $50. If you really do not have much to spend, you can line a laundry basket with soft cloth for your baby to sleep in. She won’t know it’s not a crib. I wouldn’t recommend a low drawer, because drawers are not very deep and don’t really protect the baby from rolling out. My husband’s grandmother slept in a shoebox for a few weeks when she was a little baby; she was born premature.
Swing or Bouncer Seat
Some babies enjoy sleeping in a swing or bouncer seat. Some mothers say their babies slept better in a swing than anywhere else. You can usually get either of these items for your baby for $30, plus the cost of batteries. These items are suitable for several months as well, up until your baby can get out of them. Be sure to use the straps; they’ll keep your baby safe! Don’t forget to stock up on lots of batteries.
These range in price from less than $100 to maybe $200, depending on the model. I purchased a Graco Winnie the Pooh Pack-n-Play from Wal-Mart for about $90 for my baby. This can convert from a bassinet to changing table to playpen quite quickly. Until your baby learns to sit up he can sleep in the bassinet. You can then convert it to a playpen and let your baby sleep in it. Babies don’t care where they sleep. Many people use these as travel cribs for their babies.
You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars for your baby to have a safe sleep environment. There are many alternatives that cost far less and can at the very least buy you some time to save money for a crib. You can always share your bed with your baby for free; that has many benefits for babies. Babies don’t need an expensive convertible crib; all they need is a safe, soft nest to sleep in. It doesn’t cost much to give your baby that environment.