Maybe they didn’t used to be, but now that they’re online, a registry becomes a constant source of obsession and worry. I’m always checking mine to see what’s on sale, what’s out of stock, what I need to order, what might be discontinued…and what people have bought. It’s terrible of me to ruin the surprise like that, but with a million things to buy it’s nice to know what I DON’T have to save up for. I actually shouted for joy today when I saw someone had bought the super cute high chair I wanted. Bless you, friend or family member, and I’ll write you a lovely thank you note once I know who you are.

The real problem with registries is that they’re mostly useless. There’s no polite way to tell people where to shop. Some of your friends and family live no where near a Target or a Babies R Us (hard to believe, but possible). Many things are “online only” but the shipping costs are almost as much as the actual stuff. Plus buying things off a list takes a lot of the joy out of spending an afternoon squeeing over tiny socks and brightly colored rattles. Who wants to buy a changing pad or a pack of spit-up cloths?

The worst part is I feel greedy and selfish. One of the reasons we waited to have a baby was so we could afford to provide all the crap that comes with them. It seems ridiculous that people are expected to buy gifts just because I’ve (almost) managed to reproduce. Whoopee, we figured out how all the parts go together, now open your wallets! Ugh, no. All I really need is people to tell me I don’t look so bad and my baby is sure to be adorable and I’ll love them forever. But to be fair, if any of my friends want to throw a Sex and the City-style “I’m NOT Having a Baby Shower”, I promise I will buy you a $50 bottle of booze to celebrate. I’ll even wrap it in pastel alphabet block paper.