I’ve attended plenty of baby showers in my life and the gift pile always looks similar from party to party. Onesies, diaper pails, and breastfeeding pillows fill the tables. As each gift is unwrapped I cross my fingers the recipient isn’t about to receive a double of whatever I got them.
Now that most of my friends are on their second or third child I’ve shifted my way of gifting to avoid giving them something they already have stored away.
Here are five creative baby gifts for you to put into use at the next shower you attend:
New Baby Journaling Kit
We’ve all heard of baby books, but give the new mom a creative outlet with a journaling kit. Start with a basic journal, some fancy pens, and add in washi tape, baby-themed stickers, and colorful paperclips then toss in a photo storage box. It’s so therapeutic as a new mom to have something for yourself, especially when you’re getting all your thoughts out on paper.
Hospital Survival Kit
This one is perfect for the brand new moms who don’t know what to expect at the hospital. Fill a small cosmetics bag with essential oils, rosewater facial spray, moisturizer, chapstick, and a sweet note of encouragement — all little refreshers for mom on her big day.
Newborn Photography Session
With the pressure mounting at the end of pregnancy and when baby first arrives, we totally forgot to get newborn photos done for both boys. Take care of finding a photographer and maybe even throw in a cute swaddle or onesie to outfit baby during the photoshoot! These will be keepsakes for the entire family to have for the rest of their lives.
Babysitting Gift Coupons
If you’re running low on funds, consider getting crafty with a handmade coupon book filled with babysitting vouchers for the new mom and dad to use once baby arrives. Whether you take care of the kiddo while his/her parents are on a date night or simply come over while they nap, this is a wonderful gift for novice and experienced parents alike.
College Savings Plan
Give the expanding family something to make their bundle’s future a bit brighter. Make a contribution to a NY 529 College Savings Program Direct Plan account. New York’s 529 College Savings Program Direct Plan makes it easy with a gifting portal called Ugift. If you have an account already, you can provide a specific code for your account and family and friends can make a contribution online. Here are some benefits in gifting them a New York’s 529 College Savings Program Direct Plan account:
-Start saving at any time: Whether you have a toddler or a teen, it’s never too early or too late to save for higher education.
-Take on less debt: The more you can put aside for college now, the fewer loans you and your child may have to take out later on. Saving rather than borrowing also makes your overall college cost much lower.
-Choose any eligible school: Your child can attend any eligible higher-education institution, not just a 4-year college or university. This includes vocational and trade schools, as well as community colleges and graduate schools.
Check out NYsaves.org for a full list of NY’s 529 benefits.
Which of these gifts will you be giving at the next baby shower you attend?
Up to $10,000 is deductible annually from New York State taxable income for married couples filing jointly; single taxpayers can deduct up to $5,000 annually. State tax benefits for non-resident New York taxpayers may vary. State tax deductions may be subject to recapture in certain circumstances such as rollovers to another state’s 529 plan, nonqualified withdrawals, or withdrawals used to pay expenses for tuition in connection with enrollment or attendance at an elementary or secondary public, private, or religious school. Please consult your tax advisor.
Investment returns are not guaranteed, and you could lose money by investing in New York’s 529 College Savings Program Direct Plan.
For more information about New York’s 529 College Savings Program Direct Plan, download a Disclosure Booklet and Tuition Savings Agreement at www.nysaves.org or request one by calling 877-NYSAVES (877-697-2837). This document includes investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other information. You should read and consider them carefully before investing.
Before you invest, consider whether your or the beneficiary’s home state offers any state tax or other benefits that are only available for investments in that state’s 529 plan. Other state benefits may include financial aid, scholarship funds, and protection from creditors.
The Comptroller of the State of New York and the New York State Higher Education Services Corporation are the Program Administrators and are responsible for implementing and administering the Direct Plan.
Ascensus Broker Dealer Services, LLC, serves as Program Manager and, in connection with its affiliates, provides recordkeeping and administrative support services and is responsible for day-to-day operations of the Direct Plan. The Vanguard Group, Inc., serves as the Investment Manager. Vanguard Marketing Corporation provides marketing and distribution services to the Direct Plan.
No guarantee: None of the State of New York, its agencies, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), The Vanguard Group, Inc., Ascensus Broker Dealer Services, LLC, nor any of their applicable affiliates insures accounts or guarantees the principal deposited therein or any investment returns on any account or investment portfolio.
New York’s 529 College Savings Program currently includes two separate 529 plans. The Direct Plan is sold directly by the Program. You may also participate in the Advisor Plan, which is sold exclusively through financial advisors and has different investment options and higher fees and expenses as well as financial advisor compensation.