Our younger child is turning two this month, so we’re past the “baby” stage at our house. But with several friends who have recently had or are expecting their first babies, I’ve been talking and thinking a lot about baby products lately!
So for all of the new and expectant moms out there, here’s a look back at several of my favorite baby products:
1. Baby Carrier
Our first baby in particular wanted to be held A LOT, and I was amazed at how many things I learned to do while wearing the carrier: washing dishes, folding laundry, writing thank-you notes (standing up), participating in maternity-leave conference calls, going for walks, and shopping for groceries—just to name a few.
Specifically, I used an Ergobaby Carrier. I can’t say enough good things about it. It was very comfortable and easy to use.
I also have some friends who like the Baby Bjorn carrier, and others who prefer softer, wrap-style carriers and slings. I think it’s just a matter of figuring out what you feel most comfortable using.
For more on Baby Wearing, see this Dallas Moms Blog post by Amanda L.
2. Baby Seat
I never used a baby swing, but I loved our Maclaren Universal Rocker. It was light enough to carry from room to room (you can’t carry it with the baby in it, though). You can adjust the Maclaren seat’s recline, and it can be stationary or rocking. The seat also has a vibrating function (uses batteries).
When our second baby was born, our first child was only 19 months old, and we actually got a second baby seat that sat higher off the floor, the Fisher-Price Newborn Rock n’ Play Sleeper. I still preferred the Maclaren seat, but we used the Fisher-Price rocking seat whenever our toddler was in the room. I was worried he would accidentally fall or drop something on our newborn when she was so close to the floor in the Maclaren—something to keep in mind if you have other young kids or pets.
Another thing to keep in mind: you will probably take A LOT of pictures of your baby when he is sitting in a baby seat or rocker. (The neutral background of our Maclaren seat turned out to be great for pictures!)
3. Baby 411
I was one of those new moms who bought or borrowed at least a half-dozen baby books during my first pregnancy. The one book that I kept going back to was Baby 411: Clear Answers & Smart Advice For Your Baby’s First Year by Ari Brown and Denise Fields. The book is a fairly quick read, and it’s well organized with a great Table of Contents and Index. And it’s relatively easy to understand, even when you’re a sleep-deprived new mom (think lots of bullet lists). If you get one baby how-to book, I’d recommend Baby 411.
And if you get a second book, I’d get one specifically about sleep. I like Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth M.D.
4. Swaddle Device and Wearable Blanket
We experimented with A LOT of swaddling techniques and devices with our two babies.
Our first baby slept best when swaddled snugly, and my favorite for him was the Miracle Blanket.
Our second baby liked the Summer Infant SwaddlePod, and when she grew out of that we used the similar Woombie. Both zip up the front and have stretchy material that fits snugly but still allows your baby to move her arms around some if she wants.
When our babies learned to roll over, we stopped swaddling and switched to the HALO SleepSack wearable blanket (the cotton ones—I thought the micro-fleece material was too heavy for Dallas, even during the winter).
5. NoseFrida the Snotsucker
The Nosefrida: The Snotsucker Nasal Aspirator has been mentioned a few times before on the Dallas Moms Blog—there was this entire post by Kali in November 2011—but it’s worth repeating. The NoseFrida may sound gross, but it works so much better than a traditional “bulb” nasal aspirator. When your baby gets her first cold, you’ll be glad you have it.
6. Skip Hop Pronto! Changing Station
The Skip Hop Pronto Changer Diaper Bag has a travel changing pad that folds up with 3 pockets that I use for a small wipes case, 3-4 diapers, and a supply of diaper disposal baggies. It’s perfect for when you don’t want to carry around your entire diaper bag but need to be prepared for a quick diaper change. I keep our Pronto! Changing Station in the car or in the bottom of the stroller. The older each of our kids have gotten, the more I have carried the Pronto! Changing Station with me, leaving the diaper bag at home or in the car.
7. Safety 1st Small Object Choking Tester
I always have trouble identifying “small parts” that are truly choking hazards simply by looking at them. With the tester, you can know for sure whether or not something is really a choking hazard.
This can be particularly helpful if your baby has an older sibling with toys that might have small parts. For more information about the Small Object Choking Tester, you can click here.
Obviously, this product list does not include some essential items like carseats, cribs, diapers, baby monitors, strollers, and nursing/feeding supplies. (I think entire posts could be written about each of these categories!)
For more information on some of these products and others, here are a few other DMB posts to check out: