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happy babyThe big news has been announced, friends and family are busily arranging the baby shower ...and you're invited!

Now what?

Shopping for baby shower gifts shouldn't be rocket science, although there are always baby shower gifts more appreciated than others.

Just up ahead, check out some of the most popular gifts to buy for that expectant newborn and the mom-to-be ....

Diapers, diapers, diapers

Try to avoid gimmicky gifts (i.e., diaper warmers, monogrammed diaper bags) and stick to the tried and true baby shower gifts that every new parent will love. Disposable infant diapers, for instance. They get used so fast that it can safely be said that any new mom may use them by the truckload.

Alternatively, if mom prefers eco-friendly or plans to use cloth diapers, a gift certificate from a diaper cleaning service would also be greatly appreciated.

Bath toys, teething rings, and baby bottles make perfects gifts to deposit into a baby shower wishing well.

What else do new parents most appreciate? The traditional all-inclusive diaper bag that will go with them everywhere they go. Diaper bags are great not only for diapers — but for storing bottles, snacks, lotions and baby wipes, baby's favorite toys, and a change of clothes.

popular parenting magazines
Story books and learning toys are great
as baby grows. And they do grow so fast!

Into the future

Infant toys or baby clothes are other traditional baby shower gift options. However, don't limit yourself to onesies or infant-sizes - babies grow fast!

So consider fitting babies with older outfits as well. Learning toys will also come in handy as baby grows.

If money is no object, find out what the new mom needs and consider the big ticket items like a bassinet, a baby swing, high chair, or walker. To help defray costs, arrange to chip in with other friends or family members.

Memorable ideas

Want to give something that will be especially remembered? Here are a few more ideas for the new baby as well as a special thought for mom to make her feel extra special, loved and pampered:

• Make it easy for mom to transition from home to maternity ward with a gift bag filled with things she'll need at the hospital. Be sure to include travel-size soaps, toothpaste and toothbrush, shampoo, deodorant, a comb and brush, along with a nice comfy pair of slippers.

popular parenting magazines
New moms can find out the latest in baby care and gear
with a gift subscription to a popular parenting magazine.

• Create a "3AM Kit for the New Mommy" by filling a small tote with infant diapers, baby wipes, rash lotions, baby aspirin, gas relief drops, baby teething gel, and freezable teething rings.

• Write out a check for $20-25 and designate it as "Baby's College Fund."

• A subscription to a parenting magazine makes a great gift that keeps on giving. After purchasing the subscription, buy the latest issue from a local newsstand and include a card that lets them know they can look forward to another issue each month of baby's first year.

• After the baby's arrival, mom and dad are going to need some help! Consider including an IOU for babysitting services, a gift certificate for a spa day, or dinner at a restaurant (even if it's a fast food joint) for a much needed night off.

also see -> Gift ideas for new parents

More tips & advice about baby shower gifts around the Web:

Baby Gift Suggestions - The Berkeley Parent Network features a host of more great ideas submitted by community members including gift advice for the second child, and gifts for twins and triplets.

Baby shower gift ideas and inspiration - Check out the Babycenter guide to the most popular gifts, including bath kits, books, baby slings, and more.

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