As soon as you find out you are pregnant you will inevitably start being bombarded with marketing ploys to get you to buy everything under the sun that your baby will ‘need’. Somewhere down the line you find out that you didn’t actually ‘need’ half of the things you were told you did! Here are a few things, most of which I ended up purchasing after the baby was here, that actually made life easier for both me and my baby.
Please note: Each item name is a clickable link to view and read more about the item. My hope is that
Ergo Baby Carrier – I don’t leave the house without this thing! I tried several others before finally asking around with friends and several online forums and reading a blog that a chiropractor wrote recommending this one. I can carry my little one around in this for several hours and not have a back ache. I get my grocery shopping done while she naps or is content the whole time! When she was little and didn’t want me to put her down, the ergo allowed me to get things done around the house. One tip I never had to try but I have read works is if they are too big for the infant insert, but too small to be comfortable without it, fold up a small blanket and suff it in the bottom and let them sit on that.
Fisher-Price Deluxe Auto Rock ‘n Play Sleeper – If you are like most parents, your baby will sleep in your room for the first few months and everything you read suggests that they sleep in a pack and play (play yard or playpen) or a bassinet. While those suggestions work for some babies, the rock ‘n play ended up being a life saver! Why is it so great? It’s small and compact so it can fit right next to your bed even in a small space which is really nice when your baby is waking up to be fed several times at night, it folds up and can easily be taken with you on the go, this particular model rocks itself which made my baby sleep for 5 + hours at a time most nights, it’s inclined which is great for babies that suffer from acid reflux, it is small and makes them feel secure as opposed to a pack and play and even some bassinets that can make them feel as if they are vulnerable. (If you think about it, they are used to the womb which is a warm tight space, so a pack and play may feel huge and scary!) This model also offers music and white noise which I later found out, white noise is an amazing sleep aide for babies. (Going back to the womb, it’s not quiet! Baby can hear your heart beat, voices and a multitude of other sounds in your environment, so loud white noise actually helps them to sleep.) One downside to this model is that the automatic rocker is a bit noisy and took me and my husband some time to get used to.
4Moms Infant Tub – I was lucky enough to find this item second hand but still new in the box, otherwise I probably would not have spent the money on it, however looking back, it totally would have been worth every penny had I paid retail! As first time parents we had no idea what temperature the bath water needed to be at and this tub takes the guesswork out of it with an on-board thermometer! It fits perfectly in a double sink and comes with a cup for rinsing as well as a cup holder which is very convenient. (The less I have to search for things, the better in my opinion.) It has several drains which allow fresh water to circulate around the baby while not getting too deep even for a newborn and continually flushes out dirty water so that your baby is not sitting in their own dirty water throughout the bath. I really can’t say enough good things about this tub!
Graco Relay Click Connect Performance Jogger Stroller – I have had this for about two weeks now and I just love it! It has great shocks which absorb most of the impact from rough roads or gravel and a nice padded seat to keep baby comfortable. My Graco Click Connect infant car seat clicks right in snugly and allows my baby to see me while I run even with the sun shade down as it has a peek-a-boo mesh flap which can be opened or closed with velcro. It has a locking front wheel which makes it very stable and smooth. It folds up easily and has a convenient pocket for water bottles, phone and keys. There is also a storage compartment underneath the seat big enough for a diaper bag so you have everything you need. Running with it is much easier than I thought and so far my longest run with it has been 3.5 miles. Please note: Graco also makes a similar jogging stroller which is at a lower price point called the Fast Action Jogger, however it is my understanding that this version does not offer the shock system and there are several complaints about the sun shade snapping closed as soon as you start to jog. If you’re a serious runner like me and don’t want to spend the extra money on the BOB strollers, I highly recommend the Graco Relay.
Baby Einstein Neighborhood Friends Activity Jumper – My baby LOVES this thing! She has gotten to the point where if she is not in it and wants to be she will start jumping in my arms and reaching for the jumper. I love this one because it has adjustable height, many different activities with a swiveling seat which allows me to turn her toward another activity station when she gets board with the one she is facing, the seat is removable cloth so that I can just throw it in the washing machine and the little piano has loud, quiet and off settings which I wish more toys offered! My little one is happy in her jumper for up to about 30 minutes which allows Mommy to get household chores done (or write this blog) with a clear line of site to my happy baby.
Aquaphor Baby Gentle Wash and Shampoo – It has been drilled in my head for as long as I can remember that Johnson and Johnson babywash was the best thing on the market, so naturally that’s what I got when my baby was born. It worked fine in the summer months, but once winter rolled around I could not fathom how or why my 3 month old’s skin was so dry even after a daily lotion massage. I mean, she is a baby and there is a reason they say baby-soft skin is all the rage right? Well little did I know, it was the shampoo and lotion that was drying her out! I switched to Aquaphor and presto! My baby’s soft skin came back in less than 24 hours!
Ubbi Diaper Pail – Okay, I think that we can all admit that smelly dirty diapers are one of the least favorite parts of bringing home that little bundle of joy and it seems to me that the Diaper Gene is all the rage, however it requires specific trash bags and apparently is a huge pain to empty with a twisted mess. The Ubbi uses everyday trash bags, is easy to empty and reload, locks so that toddlers can’t get into it and it really blocks the smell! What more could you ask for?
Do you have an item you can’t live without that’s not listed here? Feel free to lave them in the comments.