Friday, October 11, 2013

my favorite baby products

A long-time friend just had a baby, and as she was gearing up for baby's arrival, I wrote to her about some baby products we loved. Thought I'd share my favorites with you...
These were products we were either so glad to have or ran out to get as soon as she was born because we wished we had them.
1. Footie jammies that zip. snaps are less than ideal. I mean we still used some with snaps, but I will avoid them at all costs in the future. those newborns poop and pee like no other and it is SO hard to snap in the middle of the night. friends of ours have ones that are magnetic, which is brilliant!! on more than one occasion, i almost stole them. [update: we were gifted magnetic jammies with Emma by a sweet friend and they were as awesome as they sound!!! I want two or three pairs in EVERY SIZE!!!! #expensive #firstworldproblems] how cute are these? or these!
2. onesies or jammies with fold over mitten sleeves. especially if you're having newborn pictures taken - you should put these on so they don't scratch up their face. we didn't & addie's face was soooo scratched up before we even left the hospital. amazon has a good deal! (plus you don't have to leave the couch #preggowin)
3. this one is RaNdOm. [side note - remember when alternating caps/ lowercase was the cool way to type. hash tag junior high.] we've had better luck nail clipping with regular revlon nail clippers (a good brand!) those baby ones are too dull in my opinion and actually lead to more cuts. kind of like dull knives you will feel like a crazy monster clipping your itty bitty newborn's fingernails with giant nail clippers but they work way better. They're cheaper on amazon than in walmart :)
4. a playmat with dangly things to look at & grab. ours was very simple but addie loved it. still does actually. this might have been the only toy we had for MONTHS! This one we have was gifted by a friend :) don't get a noise-making one. You'll thank me later.
5. we used a lot of plain white onesies, especially under other clothes in the winter. both short and long sleeved. i think i ended up with a 3 pack of each in every size. i like the way carter's ones fit the best.
6. a nursing cover was convenient - didn't use at first because it's awkward and takes a while to get the hang of without a cover. but i was glad i had one as opposed to using just a blanket. [see my updated post on this - i never used it with #2.]
7. addie had a lot of trouble nursing from the get go. we met with a lactation consultant every few days for 4 weeks. (insurance covered that too. in full. worth it!!! i am SO glad i stuck with nursing. more about this another time...) anyway, since she had trouble nursing, i had to pump and bottle feed her the breast milk. our lactation consultant suggested these bottles. it was what we used the most because it was supposedly the slowest one out there- which makes the baby work hard for the milk similar to nursing in a way. everyone has their favorites though!! this is definitely not a one-right-way type of thing.
8. JJ Cole Bundle Me - it easily straps right onto the carseat or stroller and is easier than bundling them up. If we were going to be outside on a walk, I'd often throw a blanket in too, but for the car, this was all we used. No coat or anything :) I bought my baby-size for $8.00 at a kid's resale store and my toddler-size, which I'm using on the stroller this fall for $20, also at a kid's resale store.
9. SwaddleMe - there are tons of brands out there, but we liked this one. (That's a link to the exact ones we had. Make sure you order a small for a new baby!) It was a life saver for us. Those newborns just love to be snuggled up tight. If I'm 100% honest, I was slightly worried that by swaddling, we would be giving her a 'sleep crutch' or something. But seriously, they outgrow it eventually. We stopped using it when she learned to roll back to tummy, but couldn't get back to her back. It seemed unsafe to keep her swaddled. So we unswaddled her and it took one night of cry-it-out in the middle of the night for her to figure out how to sleep on her tummy unswaddled. My niece used it longer, but would break her arms out of it immediately after awhile. It was kinda her cue that it was time to sleep, even though she could get out of it. And eventually, they just didn't even put her it in anymore. We LOVED these swaddlers.

Love the pacifier lines in this picture from intense pacifier sucking :)

plus, if you use a swaddler and then go un-swaddle when they wake up, you will see this cuteness :)
10. We recently bought a light-weight umbrella stroller for city life. It folds down with one step of your foot, and has an over-the-stroller carrying strap. It has a storage basket underneath, sunshade, and rain cover that attaches separately. Addie is so comfortable in it. This stroller alone convinced Ben that it is worth it to have a high-end stroller. (And if you know my husband, you know this is a FEAT!) On Amazon, the one we have is priced at $280, which wasn't about to happen. I paid $40 for a 2 year old model at a resale store. Score! If you don't live in a city, it probably isn't worth it to have a more expensive light weight stroller. It's worth it for us because walking/ public transportation is our made mode of getting around, and we live on the 3rd floor... so... yeah.  Just yesterday, I had 2 gallons of apple cider in the basket underneath, a reusable grocery bag full to the brim hanging on the handle, and a baby in there! It's pretty heavy duty for an 8 pound stroller. Oh, plus it's made in England, so that increases our cool-factor by at least 2 points.  In case you're in the market, here's MacLaren's website, and I also see a lot of people with Uppa Baby ones. I don't know much about the difference, I only bought the one I did b/c it was what was available used :) I've also heard good thing's about chicco's fancy umbrella stroller - brand new for only $80. Plus it comes in cute colors!

To all the momma readers in the house (and dad readers), what are your favorites?