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May 30 / Amy

Favorite Baby Products – Part II

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In my last post, I focused on my favorite phone apps since B was born.  In this post, I’ll focus on our favorite items that we’ve used with B.  And then in Part III, I’ll tell you about the products we really wanted to love – but they didn’t make the cut!

I’ve linked to all the items using Amazon.com, but there’s a chance you can find each product cheaper elsewhere (especially if it looks really high).  We didn’t purchase most of these from Amazon, but it’s the easiest site to find everything online at once!

Products (In order of usage)

Itzbeen Pocket Nanny Baby Care Timer

After playing around on Amazon.com, looking at baby product after baby product, I came across the Itzbeen.  It’s a little timer that helps you track feedings, diaper changes, medicine, etc., by allowing you to track how long “itzbeen” since you did “X”.  In the first few weeks, there’s no mentally tracking the time between events.  You’re tired, the baby is crying, you just can’t easily keep track of that kind of thing (without writing it down, using a timer, etc.).  This timer can follow you room to room via the belt clip (that Josh broke a couple weeks in…not very sturdy) or you can just carry it and place it on a table/counter with the “kickstand” on the back.  Tracking events is as simple as hitting a button.  And if you’re nursing, it can help you keep track of where you last nursed, with a switch that indicates “left” or “right”.

I realize there are apps out there that do this too, in fact, Total Baby does all of the above (and I LOVE it), but I’m the only one that can tracks events on the app because it’s on my phone – I can’t sync it with Josh and have us both update on there. With a physical timer, either one of us could push the button, and if one of us left the house (or the room) and came back, we’d know what took place while we were gone.

Admittedly, after awhile, I stopped using the timer for diaper changes because there were so many of them, I did use it for feedings and sleep.  And now, we don’t use it anymore.  We pretty much stopped using it right before I went back to work, but it was VERY helpful at the beginning when time went by quickly due to lack of sleep!

Fisher Price Rock n Play Sleeper

The Rock ‘n Play (RnP) is one of those products that every mom I knew loved. It was the one thing everyone told me I needed.  Many used it as a location for their baby to sleep at night, until they moved them to the crib, worked great for babies with reflux, etc.  And this is what B slept in for the first two weeks that we were home, because his other bassinet was upstairs and we were camping out on the lower level of our house because I couldn’t walk up the stairs after my c-section.

Then I got on the internet and started reading the reviews, and they freaked me out.  I stopped letting B sleep in it overnight once we moved back upstairs, and only put him in it during the day when I couldn’t hold him or while we were eating.  Not saying that you can’t let them sleep in it overnight, we just chose not to do so.

It’s a great chair for him to sit in because he can see things going on around him better than if he were laying down.  It’s lightweight and it folds up, which makes it easy to move around.  We still use this daily, while we’re eating B sits in his RnP and watches us (and lately, giggles at us). :)

Hanging out in his RnP

Hanging out in his RnP

 

TinyLove 3-in-1 Napper

After moving back upstairs and having access to the rest of our house, B started sleeping in his 3-in-1 Napper.  It was the perfect height to sit next to the bed in our room – so I could keep an eye on him when he slept.  I wasn’t ready to put him in his crib right away, so we didn’t. :)

B slept in this when he napped during the day, and at night.  It has a mobile that hangs over the top that plays music (peppy music and lullaby music).  There’s also a vibrate function on the base of the napper.  When B got fussy to the point nothing would calm him down, we’d “buzz” him and turn the vibration and he’d calm down and sometimes even just fall asleep.

I will say the vibration is listed as being quiet on the site, but I found it to be loud and somewhat annoying.  Plus, when you turn it off, it’s a sudden change and it can sometimes wake the baby if they’re sleeping.  I’d always try to turn it off before he fell asleep for that main reason!

The Napper can be used in 3 positions: flat, slightly inclined, and sitting up.  Now that B has better head control, we put him in the Napper now to sit while we’re getting ready for work in the morning, etc.  We keep the Napper upstairs at all times, and the RnP stays on the main level, so we’re not moving things around constantly.

Formerly used for sleeping, now it's used for sitting!

Formerly used for sleeping, now it’s used for sitting!

Munchkin Steam Guard Microwave Sterilizer

Every night when I wash bottles, I sterilize them in this microwave sterilizer.  It’s nice not to have to boil things the old fashioned way.  In two minutes, I can have 4 bottles knocked out (was able to do 4 bottles, 4 nipples, and 4 connector rings when we were using the smaller bottles).  I typically wash 7-8 bottles at night, and can have everything done in 3-4 microwave sessions.  I like that it’s simple and easy to use!

Munchkin High Capacity Drying Rack

We started off with the Boon Grass drying rack, but that wasn’t cutting it for the number of bottles we were using.  When I pumped we had a LOT of bottles that accumulated and it just wasn’t big enough to hold them all when I did a mass washing.  I sought out something bigger, and found this.  I love it!  Super easy to setup, it has 16 different rungs, so you can get a lot on there.  I use the bottom area for bottles (8), and then use the top section for the connector rings (8) and nipples (8).  The bottom shelf area is where I let the lids dry, and pacifiers goes up top for drying.

Aqua Scale 3-in-1 Baby Bath Tub, Scale and Water Thermometer

When B got a little bigger (two weeks away from being 2 months old), our first bath option quickly became “not an option”.  Josh and I went out one afternoon while my mom was watching him and we went to Babies R Us to see what our options were.  There were the standard plastic tubs, the bath seats, and then this overly gadgetry bath tub – that tells you the water temperature and it has a scale built in – so you can weigh your baby.

We went with the fancier one, because that’s how we roll (and we like gimmicky things sometimes).  Plus, it was on sale.

The tub has an infant “butt rest” to keep them from sliding down into the water, that’s removable for when they get bigger.  B loves his bath, and seems to enjoy them more now that he has room to splash and kick!

We use this on the bathroom counter for now, and when he gets a little bigger, we’ll move it to the tub.  For now, I’m saving my knees and back and standing while bathing him!

Splish splash!

Splish splash!

Samsung SEW-3037W Wireless Pan Tilt Video Baby Monitor Infrared Night Vision and Zoom, 3.5 inch

Even though there are only 16 steps between my bed and B’s crib in his room, I wanted a video monitor.  Call me lazy, or just know that I like my sleep.  Having the ability to check on B at any point in the night, without crawling out of bed, is amazing.  There’s a setting you can keep it on at night so that when they make a sound or movement, it’ll turn on.  I usually hear him moving before he does something worthy enough for the monitor to turn on, but I hear that’s just a “mom thing”.  And since B makes noises in his sleep, I’m able to tell if he’s truly awake or just making noise in his sleep – again, without getting out of bed.

Lately, B’s noises have been legitimate (getting over being sick AND teething), and require me to get out of bed – which is fine, but at least I can tell without prematurely getting up!

The night vision on this monitor is great, I can see B’s chest rise and fall as he’s sleeping, and it rotates and pans pretty well too!

"I always feel like...somebody's watching me..."

“I always feel like…somebody’s watching me…”

 

TinyLove Gymini Move and Play Activity Gym

B loves his activity gym!  The music, the animals, he lights up when we play on it!  I realize that most activity mats are the same, and this is one of the links that displays a price higher than what it originally was (thanks Amazon!).

The animals hang and are easily moved.  The music player also lights up, which B enjoys watching.  It’s flexible too, so we can adjust the arches and have the light up area closer to the floor when he’s doing “tummy time” rather than keeping it above him.

There are multiple sensory items on the mat: some toys vibrate/shake when pulled, some make crinkling noises, etc.  He’s still just pulling on toys, but that keeps him entertained.  And sometimes, he’ll even pull the elephant’s foot down and into his mouth.  Gotta love teething! 😉

The music that plays is repetitive, and will play for about 12 minutes before it turns off (I’ve timed it).  There are too volume settings: quiet and not quiet (but not loud).

I’m a fan of the TinyLove products, and it just so happens the music on his mat is the same music that the mobile on his 3-in-1 Napper.

He LOVES that elephant!

He LOVES that elephant!

 

Kiddo Tags labels

Since B is going to daycare, we have to label all of his items.  As a new mom, I used a Sharpie marker to put his name on his bottles, and when we arrived the first day, they asked that I used something else.  I didn’t understand why until I washed bottles.  Doh.  It came off like it was never there!

Thankfully, my 409 ladies are a wealth of knowledge and experience, so I can go to them for advice and product recommendations.

My friend Amanda suggested that I go with Kiddo Tags for my labels.  I went on their site, and I’m so glad she recommended them!  I opted to go with the KT Value Pack because I knew we’d end up labeling many things down the line, and I wanted to just have the stickers on hand.  I’ve labeled the tops and bottoms of his bottles, his pacifiers, and his school bag so far.  With the different sizes, I can use them as I see fit for each item.

These stickers are DURABLE.  I’ve yet to have one appear to weaken on a bottle, and they get washed every day!

If you want to order anything from their site, use the discount code “REFERRAL”  for either a 15% or 20% discount.  They ship quickly too – which is nice.

Note: They also have iron labels, temporary stickers, etc.  Lots of options at Kiddo Tags!

Baby Jogger City Mini stroller

Looking for a stroller was pretty easy, since the first two or three people I asked quickly recommended the Baby Jogger City Mini stroller.  I was curious as to why it was so amazing, and when I was volunteering at a golf tournament last fall, a sorority sister had her City Mini with her.  She let me try it out, and it was love at first site.

First off, it’s REALLY light.  I didn’t want a stroller that would be a struggle to push, or put into the car.  Second, it turns on a dime – SO easy to maneuver this thing.  And third, it folds in half very easily!  There’s a small fabric handle on the seat, and once you have your hand around it and lift, it folds in half.  No struggling to fold, and it’s easy to snap into place with the folded position.

Highly recommend this one!  And to make it easier on us, we got one of the car seat adaptors, so we can place B’s car seat on the stroller and go.  It snaps into place and it’s easier than taking him out of the car seat, putting him into a stroller, taking him out of the stroller, and then back into the car seat.  He *hates* getting into his car seat. :)

Baby Jogger Car Seat Adaptor Single, Mounting Bracket

To allow us to use B’s carrier seat on his stroller, we purchased this mounting bracket.  It was VERY easy to install (I did it, and no tools were involved).  Once B outgrows his infant carrier, we can take this bracket off and use the stroller directly.

Note: There are different mounting brackets that support different infant carriers.  We used the Chicco KeyFit 30, so this was the one for ours.  If you order something like this, check to see if it fits your carrier!

Mesh laundry bags

I know this one sounds a bit out of place in the list, but they’ve been one of the best things to have when doing laundry.  I use them to collect B’s socks at the end of the day, rather then throwing them in with his other clothes in the hamper.  Since they’re so small, they can easily get lost in a big load of clothes – so having just socks in the mesh bag helps me keep track of his socks.

If there’s anything on this list that you’re going to get – get the mesh laundry bags.  I picked mine up in the laundry aisle at Publix!

And for now, these have been our favorite products!  As we find more that we love, I’ll be sure to share them.  Are there any products that you’re a fan of?  That you give at every baby shower?  Is there a “must-have” that we should try?

The next post will cover products that we really wanted to love, but they fell short of our needs/expectations!

 

Note: I was not paid for or given any of these products by any company to review.  They were purchased either by us or gifted as baby shower presents, and I wanted to share them with friends.  Now if you’re out there and would like for me to review a product of yours, feel free to contact me at wishiweretherenow at gmail dot com. 😉

Note: WishIWereThereNow.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

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