My Favorite Things: Baby Edition

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Seems like pregnancy comes in waves—I knew a ton and a half of people who had babies between December and February and now I have a ton of friends who are due in July and August… And most of the winter babies were girls, while now it seems like everyone is having boys.  Crazy how these things work…

{Side note: my friend Lindsey told me about the Chinese Gender Predictor Chart—it is right probably 90% of the time for everyone I have put in.  And if anyone cares about predicting gender, it’s the Chinese right??  Was that mean to say?}

ANYWAY.

I’m talking about babies not because I’m going to talk my own {SHUT the front door—really??} but because I have a lot of baby showers to go to!  And without a doubt, when I was pregnant with Charlotte, the best gifts I received were gifts from other Moms.  So I’d like to put together a Favorite Things basket for them.  Problem is, I have a lot of favorite things, so they all can’t make the cut—money don’t grow on trees, son!

So if I were gonna go all Oprah on you, this is what I’d give…My Favorite Things: Baby Edition.

Happiest Baby on the Block DVD—I tell every expectant or new parent I know about this.  It was seriously a game changer for us.  I won’t even go into…just watch it and use it.

 

Avent Glass Bottles—we originally registered for Dr. Brown’s bottles but Tyler insisted they weren’t “cute enough.”  Lucky for him, my friend Kelly gifted these to me at a shower and we’ve never used anything else.  They are sturdy and super easy to clean.  We hand clean them because it’s faster, but they could easily go in the dishwasher since you don’t have to worry about plastic breakdown.  We have a pair of 4oz and a pair of 8oz and love them both.

{In my google image search, I came across THIS bottle—holy smart!! I might have to try this out…}

 

Inchbug Orbit Labels—gifted to me from my sister, I LOVE these bottles bands.  They are great for keeping track of your bottles between children and at daycare or nursery, and you can easily transfer them to sippy cups and water bottles when they’re older.  If any of my friends were revealing what they’re naming their babies, I’d buy them!! But they’re not.  Oh well.  There are eight colors to choose from and you get four for $12.95.

 

White Noise—we live and die by white noise.  Okay, we sleep by white noise…and by “we,” I mean Charlotte—I hate sound machines.  It was the biggest reason we were ready to move her to her own room—so we didn’t have to listen to white noise all night!  Anyway, we registered and received the Sleep Sheep, which is adorable. But it turns off after 45 minutes!  And in those early days, the turning on or off of white noise was like turning on or off her freak out button.  These days, she’s not so temperamental but we still swear by it for filtering out background noise, especially when we’re in public and want her to stay asleep.  So I found this myBaby Sound Spa at Buy Buy Baby for $10 and LOVE it.  It attaches to her carseat, so it’s everywhere we go.  You can set a timer or let it run endlessly.  It runs on AAA batteries and it lasts for awhile.  I think I’ve only replaced them once or twice.  For her room, I’m embarrassed to admit we use an old iPad…I know there are sound machines that don’t turn off, I’m just too cheap lazy to go get it.  So yes, the sound machine in her room is a first generation iPad. Don’t judge me.  This is the app we use—it’s always on “heavy rain.”

 

Speaking of sleep… My next favorite is the Summer Infant Pink SM® 2PK Sweet Trees  - M SwaddleMe Sleep Sack—we have used four different brands of swaddles and this is our favorite.  It’s not flawless, they’ll always figure out a way to Houdini themselves out of it at some point.  But it works the best of any we’ve used… {We’ve also used the Miracle Blanket, HALO Sleep Sack, and Perfect Swaddle—you will find yourself searching for anything that will help them sleep!}  And just a heads up—you might think your kid hates being swaddled based on their reaction to the actual swaddling process—Charlotte fought it every time.  But there was a significant difference between how she slept with and without it…The second we finished wrapping her up, she was completely calm.

 

fridababy® The Windi® Gas & Colic ReliefThe Windi—my friend Kelly also told me about this.  This thing is AMAZING.  I admit, it’s weird…”I’m supposed to do what with this?”  But it will take one session of your sweet tiny baby screaming and looking at you like, “Please make this stop!!” and there’s nothing you can do but bicycle their legs and hope it passes quickly.  When they’re teeny tiny, they really freak out about gas. Enter the Windi!  You massage their belly, stick this thing in their booty and it instantly sucks out all the air in their tummy.  And your screaming baby instantly quiets.  It truly is amazing…

 

OXO Tot Perfect Pull Wipes Dispenser—another gift from my friend Kelly {I think she gets Friend of the Year!}.  We don’t use a wipe warmer—cold wipes have never bothered Charlotte.  But this dispenser is fantastic— single handedly removing ONE, I JUST WANT ONE!! wipe from the bag could be the next challenge on Minute to Win It.  This container has a weight that rests on top of the wipes and allows you to just pull out one at a time, even using one hand.  I give you one 2am diaper changing session of shaking the wipes bag with on hand, holding your baby down with the other so they don’t roll off the table and die, for you to appreciate the novelty of this device.

 

Gripe Water—there are several different brands out there and they all work.  This is an all natural remedy that uses ginger and fennel to help settle their tummies and cure hiccups.  We preemptively gave Charlotte a dose of Gripe Water after every feeding for the first month of her life.  Their digestive system is just so fragile when they’re little… Keep gas drops on hand too.

 

Boudreaux’s Butt Paste!  Don’t know why but every mom I know uses this stuff and Charlotte has never had any problems with diaper rash.  It does seem a bit thicker than other brands I’ve tried.

 

Travel size Dreft stain spray—Dreft seems to be the baby detergent to beat.  The first time you wash their clothes you’ll be all “Ohhhh…THAT’S where babies get that smell!”  I keep a small bottle on Charlotte’s changing table and spray the collar of all of her clothes after we undress her.  The collar gets so crusty and gross from milk and spit up and over repeated wears it can yellow…so I spray the collar every time, even if you can’t really see any stains.  I also keep a stain stick in the diaper bag.

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Other Stuff…Big Stuff…Other Big Stuff… Stuff Oprah would really give away.

We swear by our BOB Revolution stroller {cheapest we could find it new here—please don’t pay $450 at Babies R Us!}, and also our Chicco Liteway Plus {we didn’t want to invest in a frame stroller since you don’t use it that long—this functions as a frame stroller and converts to an umbrella stroller for when they’re older.  It’s light and narrow and great for every day use}. 

We use this activity gym and Bumbo daily. 

We use this bathtub {though throwing the Bumbo in the tub has become much easier and faster lately}. 

We have the Tripp Trapp high chair with the baby addition {White chair + green seat + stripe cushion = super cute in my kitchen}.

Aidan & Anais blankets are great to cover the stroller, great as a swaddle in the early days, and they’re huge. 

And this is just my favorite blanket of all time—it’s a heavy, soft fleece—not the thin fleece fabric you think of when you hear “receiving blanket.”  It was worth every penny.  All of my kids will have one.

We use a Chicco Keyfit carseat.

We use Pampers diapers and wipes.

We have the non-platinum version of this swing and love it {except for its wide base and battery operated}. A ton of moms from work swear by the Fisher Price Rock n Play, though we didn’t get one.  And I think whoever invented this should be paid a million dollars a day for the rest of their life—it almost makes me want to buy a Graco carseat.

I use a Medela Freestyle pump and love it because it’s small and handheld—no bags, no cords, no need to find an outlet.  If you’re a traveler, this is for you {only thing—it’s LOUD!}.  I also have a Medela Pump in Style Advanced a friend loaned me {it’s not gross—I bought my own boobie parts, ya weirdo} and really like it too {more cumbersome with tubes and wires and plugs, but much quieter and I like the breastshields better}. 

We don’t use carriers a ton yet, but when we do, we use the Baby Bjorn Active and the Peanut Shell sling

We travel with the Graco Pack n Play and we use Nuk pacifiers because they stay in her mouth better than a Soothie {which we used in her first few weeks—it was the only one she would take}.

We have this Mac Daddy of Motorola monitors and love it—especially our ability to scan her entire room from the monitor.  I had no idea how much it cost until now.

And I would punch you in the face if you ever tried to steal my $2 bottle brush.

Things we DON’T use… A bottle warmer, a wipe warmer, or a bottle sterilizer {they have bags for that…or these things called dishwashers}.  We have this car mirror but HATE it because it never stays put.

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And THAT is all I can possibly think of!  I can’t even get into toys because I have too many opinions—I will save that for another post!

Sigh. Grunt.  All that hyperlinking is hard… I don’t even have it in me to write a pull-it-all-together ender.  Just a “This is the baby stuff we use!”

*Note: this is written based on my short four months of experience and I am not being compensated for my opinion!  Additionally, most of these products were passed on to me because they were a favorite of another mom—THANK YOU to everyone who pointed my in the right direction…

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