It started out innocent. A&D, Pampers and whatever else my sister, her 3 month old in tow, urged were necessary in anticipation of my son’s birth. Maybe I added in booties for free overnight shipping. Then B was born, along with a whole new world of necessities. A featherweight compared to the 12-pound wonders typical of the Hammond clan, my son swam in most of the clothes in the drawers. Likewise, loved ones gifted us with duds our son “could grow into.” A wardrobe in the 0-3 month size? Find it on, my sis Marla reminded me. Of course the site also brimmed with diapering, burping and feeding essentials, my husband got wind, enticing him to open an account online.

Month two and three of my son’s life, about the time I awakened from the sleepwalking stage of giving birth, I became riveted by the sales and reviews on Why need a mommy network just yet when I could trust my fellow shoppers? Moms giving a flawless five stars for a nursing tank? Wait, what fit of my current clothes were hackneyed beyond repair by being a milk machine. Maybe I needed to take stock in the site’s Moms & Maternity section. After all, I lacked the time, figure and finances to shop in person. But thanks to hubby putting his credit card on file, I felt free to bulk shop for babe and throw in a fun extra for me every few orders on Hey, when you’re no longer making bank you gotta take it where you can get it.

I also didn’t want my kid to be without anything he might need. One day, feeling a tinge of shoppers remorse after upping my usual weekly orders from one to two, a mommy friend turned me on to the partner site,, a smorgasbord of everything from Brillo to natural cleaners and beauty products. Perhaps I could perk up my barely peepers. Yeah, I still felt exhausted. The friend also relied on the affiliated for pet needs. “Order from any of the partner sites,” she said, “and things come in one box, all from the same account.” Done and done. Only we didn’t have a dog so when the site started partnering with other sites, like for toys and for home goods, I became hooked. Well, we needed bins to put all of the toys! And consider all we were saving from not getting pet items.

Month six postbaby, I divulged to another mommy friend that I might be becoming a compulsive buyer on the site. Jess admitted she shops on with the mentality that she’s spending someone else’s money. Is it a mom thing? A stay-at-home mom thing? Maybe it’s New York mom thing for the immediacy and ease of shopping. Thing is, I am generally frugal. And now that I’m just freelancing, I feel as if I can’t rely on the site for all of our needs and then some. Or at least I’m feeling some shopping guilt. I guess I’ll cut back where I can, continuing to sort by least expensive. However, a writer and editor by trade, I take pride in being mommy homemaker, and all of the cleaning, cooking and caring for others that goes along with it. I hope hubby breadwinner thinks my purchases are worthwhile, when and if he notices. I especially hope he keeps the account active. I could use a new mascara.