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The Best Baby Gifts (We Never Asked For)

baby gifts

A few years ago, like many (type A) first-time moms, I created a baby registry of carefully selected, must-have baby items. Our list was minimal compared to most, and we were fortunate to receive (or buy ourselves) everything. That being said, for both of our babies, we also received a lot of non-registry gifts. Most were clothes and blankets (seriously, so many!), some were returned/exchanged/donated, and a handful made this list of the best baby gifts we never asked for!


This gift came from my husband’s friend, who first called to ask what kind of diapers we were using. He told us that they still had unopened gifts from their daughter, and they wanted to get us a baby gift that we’d definitely use. A couple of days later, the largest box of diapers arrived at our doorstep, and I didn’t have to buy another diaper for months! I know this isn’t the most fun gift to buy (although Honest Diapers are totally adorable), but it was the best gift to receive.

Lands End Monogrammed Canvas Tote Bag

This was a gift for my second daughter, who is just over 2 1/2 years younger than my first, and the same gender. We already owned all of the baby gear, supplies, and clothes that we need, and now, we have this great big tote as the perfect way to bring everything with us, any time that we leave the house for more than just a quick outing.

Personalized Puzzle Step Stool

Over the past three years, this stool has served as both a toy and a learning tool, has kept doors open and shut, has been a nightstand beside my daughter’s toddler bed with tissues and water when she’s sick and is currently in the bathroom. When I first opened this gift, I thought it was cute, but never would have guessed how much we’d use it.  Check out this DIY stool (and more great gift ideas) here.


I’m a firm believer that a child can’t have too many books, mainly because they come in so many shapes, sizes, story lengths, and page materials. Not to mention, the number and variety of topics and themes. Check out FCMB kids’ favorite books or this BabyList guide for Baby’s First Library for some popular titles. My only suggestion is to include a gift receipt; we rarely receive duplicates, but when we do, I find books are surprisingly hard to exchange.

Restaurant Gift Card

On one of my mother-in-law’s early visits, she brought us a restaurant gift card and hoped that we’d get a chance to treat ourselves to a date night. Let’s be honest, that’s not always easy to coordinate with a newborn! Instead, we ordered in dinner, four Fridays in a row. I love date nights, but as a new mom, no cooking and no dishes were a real treat!

I also asked my co-contributors to share the best baby gifts they never asked for. Favorites include:

What’s the best baby gift you received?

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4 Responses to The Best Baby Gifts (We Never Asked For)

  1. Avatar
    Cedaewalla December 29, 2016 at 5:57 PM #

    Best one I got was a cool mist humidifier & a new baby “sick supply pack.” Gas drops, gripe water, baby probiotic, Tylenol, etc.

  2. Jess Grutkowski
    Jess Grutkowski January 1, 2017 at 8:57 PM #

    So TRUE!!! We had twin girls so everyone wanted to buy us cute clothes but the reality is there are many presents new families actually need.

    Now my top gift to give is a pack of diapers, good coffee and wine!

  3. Avatar
    Llewellyn January 31, 2017 at 12:02 PM #

    As a company who manufactures personalised baby gifts, I can sympathise with those parents who receive baby gifts from people with the best intensions, but never the less you do not want or like the gift. We have mums calling us to see if they can return the personalised item, usually because it has the name spelt wrongly or in the wrong colour. I am sorry to say that as it is personalised we cannot accept the return as we cannot resell it with the name on it. We recently had one with Tracy Boo! on it.
    So please remember to ask the receiving parent, what personalisation they would like on the item.

  4. Avatar
    Selena Sophiya February 22, 2020 at 3:46 AM #

    Really nice post. Thanks for sharing such a beautiful post. Hope you will share more about the best baby gifts. Market Stree has also helped me about personalised baby gifts. Thank you both.

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