Pictured here are nine babies I use in my childbirth classes. I am cheap -- I mean, frugal. I could have purchased very expensive dolls from a company that specializes in education materials for this purpose. I could have eve gone to Toys R Us and bought them brand new. But being as I love saving money and find it a challenge to see how little of it I can spend and still have a useful item, I decided to scour my local thrift stores. It didn't happen in one day, it took time and persistence, but one by one I acquired these dolls.
See the one on the top shelf, middle position, with the tattoos on his head? He's my favorite, and I bring him out every week to show a baby's position in the womb, or how a baby's head appears when crowning, or how to breastfeed in a laid-back position. The other dolls only come out in the breastfeeding class.I also purchased newborn clothes from thrift stores so they wouldn't be cold and naked.
I bet I paid no more than $25 for the whole set. After the class when they are used, I clean their hard surfaces with a Clorox wipe and return them to their cupboard. Once every 6 months I wash their clothes. In "Coach's Notebook," by Linda J. Smith, she cautions about handling dolls as carefully as you would real babies, to model positive behavior for your participants. I have a habit of sitting my little model baby in my lap, facing outward, with his feet crossed at the ankles in a comfy, watching-TV-in-the-recliner position during class. It makes people smile, although a real baby wouldn't sit like that for long.
I have a fake uterus I use as well, also purchased at a thrift store -- but I will save that for another post (hint: it was repurposed from something else). There are some things you will just have to buy, like your favorite DVDs or copyrighted printed materials, so anything you can creatively recycle leaves you more in your budget for the things that just won't budge.
♥ four young boys and a boy dog (offspring)