registry_for_adoption.jpgHere’s our follow-up to last week’s post, Buying for Baby: Should we stock up now or later?

So you’re ready to start your adoption registry or wish list, but aren’t sure where to start? Lifetime has created this adoption shopping checklist so you can be sure you have all the needed essentials on your registry for adoption.

Remember, you may need to customize your own list, based on your adoption search goals. For example, if you’re open to a child between the ages of newborn to 2 years old, you may not want to stock up on newborn clothing or buy an infant car seat until you know for sure the age and needs of the specific child you adopt.

For Your Adoption Travel

  • Luggage
  • Diaper bag 
  • Bags for dirty/soiled clothes
  • Laundry detergent (travel size)
  • Travel-size first aid kit
  • Gifts for your baby’s birth parents (check with your adoption attorney first to make sure it’s allowable per state laws)

Baby Gear and Travel

  • Stroller and/or umbrella stroller
  • Stroller accessories, such as a rain cover, sun shade, foot muff, and hooks for bags or purses
  • Car seat
  • Additional car seat bases, for all of your cars
  • Car seat accessories, like a mirror, sun shade for the windows, and car seat cover
  • Baby carrier (like these ones from Baby Bjorn, Ergobaby, and Infantino
  • Swing, bouncer, and rocker
  • Pack N Play Playard and two to three play yard sheets
  • Diaper bag 

Nursery and Décor

  • Changing table
  • Changing pad
  • Changing pad covers (2-3)
  • Crib and crib mattress
  • Waterproof mattress pads (2-3)
  • Fitted crib sheets
  • Crib sheet protectors (2-3)
  • Color-coordinated valance, dust ruffle, quilt, etc
  • Dresser
  • Co-sleeper or bassinet
  • Rocking chair or glider
  • Storage bins or baskets
  • White noise sound machine
  • Laundry hamper
  • Baby-sized hangers (12-15)


  • Formula
  • Bottle and nipples (8-12)
  • Dishwasher basket for bottle parts
  • Bottle warmer
  • Bottle sterilizer
  • Bottle brush
  • Drying rack for bottle parts (like this cute one from Boon)
  • High chair
  • Booster seat for dining out
  • Bibs (8-10)
  • Burp cloths (8-10)
  • Pacifiers (5-6)

Bath and Potty

  • Bathtub
  • Baby wash or shampoo
  • Rinse cup for shampoo
  • Bath toys
  • Mat for parents to kneel on
  • Hooded baby towels (4-6)
  • Baby washcloths (7-8)
  • Diapers (in various sizes: preemie, newborn, and size 1)
  • Diaper pail
  • Wipes
  • Diaper rash ointment

Safety and Health

  • Baby monitor
  • Humidifier
  • Forehead or ear thermometer
  • Nasal bulb
  • First Aid kit
  • Baby medicines: Tylenol, gripe water, gas drops
  • Nail clippers and baby-sized nail files
  • Brush and comb
  • Night light
  • Shopping cart cover


  • Books
  • Activity mat
  • Rattles and toys 
  • Baby “lovie” (it’s a stuffed animal with a soft blanket attached)
  • Extra batteries

Clothing and linens

  • Undershirts (4-6)
  • Long and short-sleeved onesies (4-8) 
  • Caps (1-2)
  • Mittens so they don’t scratch their face (1-3 pairs)
  • Socks (9-12 pairs)
  • Receiving/swaddling blankets (6-8)
  • Wearable blankets (1-2) 
  • Sleeper gowns (4)
  • Footie pajamas (4-8)
  • Pants (4-8 pairs)
  • Outfit to wear coming home!

We recommend that you print this list, or save it to your smartphone. That way, you can keep organized before you build your adoption registry for your newborn. If you’ve already registered, then you can use this list to find out if you’ve forgotten anything.

Lifetime Adoption
Written by Lifetime Adoption