Friday, August 30, 2013

20 Baby Items I Don't Want To Live Without (Also Great Gift Ideas) {Friday Finds}


When Jeff and I found out we were having a baby girl, I was excited to start our registry, but two minutes after walking into the store, I felt extremely overwhelmed. With all the choices (which one of these 50 different types of pacifiers should we pick?) and suggested items (Do we really need a wipes warmer?), it can be a new parent's nightmare. #firstworldproblems

Now that my baby girl is 18 months old, I've done a lot of trial and error (in case you didn't know, that's pretty much what parenting consists of). Today, I'm sharing with you 10 of 20 baby items I LOVE and would not want to do without. Tomorrow, I will post the other 10. Some of these items I never imagined needing or wanting, but some generous people thought to give them to me. Of course, these are my opinions and these items may not work for everyone, but I think they're great.

So, if you're looking for a great baby gift or wondering what to register for, here they are in no particular order 1-10:

Price: $6.29
Someone gave this to me as a gift and to be honest, I thought I'd never use it. We had a baby bath tub we used until Cupcake grew out of it at about a year old. She loved baths...that is until we stopped using the baby bath. Bath time became horrendous. She screamed and cried the.entire.time. After trying everything-colder water, warmer water, changing the room temperature, toys, putting her in a laundry basket-I threw this in and magic! Turns out our baby is a diva who doesn't like the feel of hardness on her naked bum.

Just don't pay attention to the hot water indicator-it doesn't work, as they usually do not.

Price: $27
We decided to skip the high chair entirely. We didn't really have room for it nor did we have room to store it when we no longer used it. Best. decision. EVER. When Cupcake started solids (we started her fairly early-at about 4 and half months), we bought this booster seat and she's been using it ever since. When she was smaller, I rolled up dish towels and put them in the sides to keep her secure (she was already sitting up pretty well when propped). 

It's super-easy to tote around too, which is great for us as we travel a lot. It's light and compact and you can wash the tray in the dishwasher.

Price: $10 for set of 6 with tray

I decided to make my own baby purees for the most part. These storage containers were perfect for storage. First of all, they are 2 oz cups, which is a great baby serving size. But, most importantly, they conveniently can go from freezer to microwave to table. They are leak-proof too (really), so I could just grab them out of the freezer or fridge and take them on the go. They are also top rack dishwasher safe, BUT I washed them by hand after one of the lids dropped to the bottom of the dishwasher and melted (oops).

Price: $20

That's little Cupcake enjoying the pool in her float. I love this thing! I blew it up ONCE and it stayed inflated the entire Summer. We went to the pool about twice a week. Cupcake is a little afraid of the pool and this helped her get used to the water and enjoy being in the pool.

It comes with a canopy to block the sun, but we didn't really use it. It's convenient to carry because it folds into a circle and comes with a plastic carrier.

BRICA Car Mirror

Price: $15
This is another item I thought was a little ridiculous at first-I figured my baby would be totally fine strapped in her car seat without me seeing her. I have to admit, I was quite relieved when we put it in the car. It's not a necessity (your baby WILL be fine) but it's nice. I am including it, not because it was a life-saver for me, but because Cupcake LOVES this thing. All babies are a little vain, so this is perfect entertainment in the car. She gets so excited when she gets in the car because of this. Also, it allows me to talk to her because she can see me in it via the rear view mirror.

Price: $55

We purchased this with a gift card shortly after Cupcake was born. We picked this one out because when she as in my womb, I was convinced she would one day become a soccer player. Sure enough, it was a life-saver. This thing could entertain her for AN HOUR-yes, as an infant. We laid her on this and ate dinner in the living room every night. 

It was perfect for tummy time because the bar can be moved down to face the baby when they are on their tummy. Cupcake HATED tummy time, so anything that distracted her was good. The piano also flips, so baby can still play with it when they learn to sit up. It was the most versatile and longest lasting baby gym I could find and it was perfect.

Price: $90

We graciously received this from a group of friends and it was one of Cupcakes absolute favorite activities (she still likes to pull up on it from the outside and play with the objects). She went crazy in this thing and giggled and giggled.

It also helped us a lot with her head-as you can see, she had to wear a helmet for a flat spot. She hated tummy time and as soon as she learned to roll over, keeping her on her tummy was incredibly difficult, but the jumperoo helped us keep her off the back of her head. She also has hypotonia (low muscle tone) in her legs. She overcompensated for it by stiffening her legs. The jumperoo helped her get comfortable with bending her legs and her physical therapist actually recommended we use it.

Infantino Cart and Highchair Cover

Price: $30

I confess, I'm a jerk. When I first saw someone using one of these, I judged them as a neurotic germaphobe. But then my non-germaphobic sister set me straight. "It's going to be flu season," she pointed out. "Do you know how many people touch those carts and how much your baby will put her fingers in her mouth?!" Oh yeah. So, I bought one.

I love this one-AND it's incredibly cute! It not only protects baby from germs, but me as well! It also makes the cart more comfortable. This one fits over most carts-even the obnoxiously large Target carts. The cart lap belts fit through slots so you can still strap in your baby securely.

Now that Cupcake's older, we don't use it as much-unless the cart looks incredibly nasty (I am looking at you Walmart on Wendover Ave that I only go to if I'm desperate). I most likely will use it again during flu season, though!

I've never used it on the high chair, so I can't speak to that aspect.

Play Yard

Price: $100-$200

A play yard is a MUST, especially if you travel as much as we do-or at all. It's also great if you have a two-story house and want your baby to nap downstairs. We have a Graco Pack N Play, similar to the one above, and I love it. Cupcake slept in this as an infant, as we didn't have a crib for her until she was about three months old (we were moving, so didn't bother). I never used the baby sleeper because I was new-mom nervous that she would be a baby-lete genius and learn how to roll over at 2 weeks.

But, we did use the higher level bassinet until she was too heavy. She still sleeps in it when we travel. It folds up and packs easily and we don't have to rent hotel cribs. Whoever invented these is/was a pure genius and should win the Nobel Peace Prize for parent sanity.

Udder Cover

Price: $35

I prefer to nurse in public with a cover and The Udder Cover was by far my favorite. They are all pretty much designed the same, but the UC's neckline popped out enough to let me see my baby and when I washed it, it popped back into place. Other covers' neck lines became all mangled and wouldn't lie the same. I'm thankful for the women at my church who bought me this cover!

You can find Part 2 Here!

All opinions are mine. I was not contacted to review any of these products nor did I receive anything free to review. These are simply products I've used and like.

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