We thought a potty that rewarded our child with loud music (which he loves) would be a wonderful potty-training tool. And it was, until the music started going off at random intervals, followed by the child's declaration that he was finished and it was time for an M&M (our second, and more successful, potty training tool).
Completely, utterly pointless, unless you're using socks made of duct tape. I felt bad about this in the winter, but the children made it very clear that foot coverings were not necessary.
A baby swing
Look at this mother, working away while her smiling baby enjoys a few minutes, maybe even 20 minutes, in the swing. This has never happened at my house.
Elaborate sippy cups
Sippy cups come with lids, caps, handles and little plastic things that are just asking to get lost. And then you have to clean them. I prefer the Take & Toss or Ziploc cups, which are easy to clean and cheap if you lose one.
Color Wonder products
I went thorough a few marker and finger paint sets before realizing that teaching your child it's not possible to make marks on the wall is not necessarily a good thing.
Dolls that urinate
There are anatomically-correct dolls that urinate in an effort to show your potty-training child that he or she, too, can do it, and I was lucky enough to receive one. Ours urinated from the back upper thigh. The child was too busy screaming for M&Ms to notice this malfunction.
Clothing for infants over two months should be zipper-only.
1. Babies don't need jeans
2. Overalls don't fit in a car seat
3. They cost like $40
4. Babies hate wearing overalls
A double stroller
You know those giant plastic kid car shopping carts in the grocery store that are impossible to maneuver? I'm pretty sure my double stroller was bigger than that. I used it exactly one time and then the older child started getting a lot more exercise.
A crib set
Let's see - a crib set costs like $150 and comes with sheets, a bumper, a blanket and sometimes a mobile. You can't use the blanket until they're 1, and you have to stop using the mobile when they can stand up and reach it. You can't use the crib bumper at all. That leaves the sheet, and you can get one of those for $10 at Walmart.
A Moby wrap
I got a Moby wrap and used it for one newborn plane trip, so I guess it did serve a purpose. But I never used it again after that, because it takes about 45 minutes and a series of contortionist moves on the part of both mom and baby to get one on.
Dr. Brown's bottles
It is hard enough to clean normal bottles without giving them an extra, super skinny part. I found Evenflo's plastic bottles, at $4 for a 3-pack, work just fine.
The infamous Diaper Genie
I actually never purchased one of these, because about 40 different people warned me to never, ever get one. A trash can with a tight lid works just as well. If it's an outside trash can, even better.
I never purchased a bottle warmer (more warnings from friends) but there was a brief time when I warmed bottles for my first child. The second child was raised on strictly room-temperature bottles, and from what I can tell there has not been psychological damage.