So if you're very observant (or if you've spoken to me at all in the last six weeks.) you'll know that I'm pregnant again! We've seen our baby three different times and we heard the heartbeat for the first time yesterday! We're pretty excited as I'm sure you can imagine. I've already begun collecting supplies for new baby. I was searching the blogosphere this morning for posts about registering for a second child and I found a post that was quite interesting over at alphamom.com. in it, Amy detailed the products she found both the most and the least useful for her two children and I was shocked to discover that three of the items she'd listed as least useful were some of the most useful for me when Betty was a baby!
But how can that be? My baby loved them so they must be universally well loved, right? clearly not. both of her babies were boys and, I have never met them so I can't even guess at their temperaments, but I do know that Betty was a very easy baby to care for and a girl. She didn't gripe a whole lot about anything and was pretty happy for the most part. I'd take credit for it if I could but I can't. I just got lucky. My doctors called her a "sucker baby" as she was sure to sucker me into having another one that might be trouble. Anyway, this got me thinking and I think I'll share with you my own personal list of the most useful new baby things I had when Betty was little. They were great for me but my baby is my baby and your baby will be your baby... He or she might hate all of them. I guess that's part of the "fun" of the first part of parenthood.
here's the link to the other list"
Betty's Best Baby Things:
1. Our Graco travel system. ( the car seat being the most important part - Graco makes great car seats.) Of course you need a good car seat but the great thing about having the travel system, other than that it matched and looked so cute, was how convenient it was. I honestly can't imagine trying to travel across the country, like I did several times, without it. Traveling with a baby with multiple connections is stressful, especially if you're lugging all of your stuff through the airport. The travel system was great because I could click in the car seat, shove the car seat base into the storage basket underneath, put my tickets in the main compartment on the handle and put my purse/ diaper bag in the stroller seat underneath the car seat along with any blankets or lovies I may have brought with me. this way I avoided checking her precious car seat (which can cause tremendous damage to the seat making it less safe) and I had a very convenient way to get everything around without actually weighing down my body. I even got a professional massage in Seattle while Betty napped peacefully at arms reach. it was AWESOME! another reason this is great is that if you've only bought one seat and planned your little one to ride as a lap infant you can still have your car seat on hand if another seat opens up. It is, of course, much safer for the little one to be buckled into their own secure seat while flying in case of turbulence. The first thing I would do when getting to my gate would be to ask if there was an open seat and more often than not there was. People would gladly move to make room for me and we never had to pay for the extra seat. Only a couple times did Betty have to ride on my lap and when that did happen. I just dropped her stroller and car seat (already clicked into the base so as not to damage either) at the door of the plane before boarding and it was waiting for me when I right outside the door when I got off the plane again. The lot of it was so easy to operate and put back together that I could easily do it with one hand. people were often very impressed with the stroller. I honestly can't say enough how great it was.
this one is very similar to the one I had.
P.S. Chad just told me that he loved having the Graco travel system for when Betty had fallen asleep in her carseat. It is really nice to be able to transfer a sleeping baby from car to stroller or vice versa without disturbing them. We literally used this every time we went out for a long time. It made life much more enjoyable.
2. A messenger style Diaper bag, or cross body bag. I have never been able to understand how other parents cope with the regular "purse" style diaper bags like this one. I tried wresting with one of those for like five minutes before I decided it was garbage and needed to be destroyed. I love the cross body bags because you don't need your arms to hold it so your arms are then free to hold baby which is great for travel, but also great for every day life. If you've got a massive bag on your arm and a baby in your arms also, how are you supposed to fish something out of your bag when you need it? You're not. You have to stop and put your bag on the ground (yuck) and then kneel or squat with your baby and fish through it awkwardly. If the bag is just hanging from your body you can hold baby with one arm and search with the other. you don't even need to stop if you're bag is well organized. everything is right within reach. So much easier! I honestly don't think I would've ever left my house if I didn't have a good bag, I would've been way too stressed out about it. For Betty we just bought a nice red and brown Timbuktu bag from ebay. My thinking was that it would be manly enough for Chad to use which was right but he didn't end up using it all that much. Big shock, haha! As mommy, and stay-at-home-mommy, at that. I will be the one using the bag so this time I opted for something more attractive. Side note: chad now uses the Timbuktu bag daily as his lunch box so I was right about it being manly enough. This is the bag we have for this time around. I'm really not too worried about it being too girly for Chad when he does use it though as he has grown accustomed to holding my purse when we shop or when I take Betty to the potty or whatever. I think at this point he's secure enough with himself to use a bag with flowers. haha.
3. The Ergobaby carrier. We didn't discover this little peach until Betty was already a couple months old but it was an amazing addition. We had a couple different types of carriers before finally buying an ergo on ebay and no matter how we adjusted the straps my back would be in crazy amounts of pain and Betty didn't look comfortable either. It was hard to go for walks which was hard because we tried to go for walks often. I never tried slings. Here's why. And for trail walks the stroller was just not practical but the ergo was a God send. it is so comfy and so easy to use. you can strap yourself and your little one in without any help from anyone (I bring this travelling also.) And you can wear it several different ways. It's a front carrier, a backpack and a hip carrier all in one. I highly recommend the Ergo carrier to everyone with a new baby. We'll be buying the infant insert for this one to see how that works but I've heard great things. Here's the ergo we have.
4. The Fisher-price Rainforest Open-Top Cradle Swing. I did not register for this, I didn't even know it existed, but my aunt and uncle and cousins bought it as a baby shower present and it was amazing. Betty loved it. This one was great because it swings baby either front to back or side to side which is great because Betty didn't always want to be swung the same way she had been the day before and also, when friends came over with their kiddos, they could use it too and it would swing just like their swings at home. I was able to get so much done that otherwise would have been impossible because of this swing. It plays music or rain forest sounds and it plugs in or can be battery operated. It does take up a lot of space so I'm not quite sure where you would take it that it couldn't be plugged in but whatever. I'm sure such a place exists. Anyway, we don't have it anymore but it is a must-buy for sure this time around.
5. The Fisher-Price Soothe and Glow Seahorse. We had a nice crib soother but Betty slept in a bassinet in our room so we got virtually zero use out of it. This seahorse was awesome because we could put it next to her wherever she slept - it went to daycare with her every day. Betty had some rough nights and she loved white noise. We'd run the shower, the vacuum, the washing machine, whatever worked but the thing that was most successful (luckily) was this cute little seahorse. It would just put her right to sleep and then glow out. It has no buttons or small parts all it takes is a squeeze and its back on. Super handy.
6. Our Papasan style bouncy seat. This was great to have in addition to the swing for when I just needed half a second to myself, like when I had to go to the bathroom. I set the papasan just inside the bathroom door and showered or whatever I needed to do while baby looked at the toys hanging from above her or the steam from the shower. Our batteries ran out after a while but Betty didn't seem to mind too much when it stopped vibrating - although that feature did seem to put her to sleep pretty quickly. She was never out of my sight or more than an arm's reach from me and I still felt free to care for myself. I was definitely on a timer though so I had to hurry.
7. Mylicon drops. We only needed to use this a couple of times but when we used it, it worked! For those annoying burps that just wont burp and make baby scream and scream. Or for tummy bubbles that just wont stop. I was hesitant to use anything but I read up on this and it's designed for itty bitty little ones. another mother recommended it to me and I was certainly glad to have it when I needed it.
8. Little Noses Saline Drops. These, again, were a huge help when needed and were another surprise gift from another mom. I never would have even thought of it. the weird nasal aspirators do work but only for a few minutes it seems. one little drop of this stuff and Betty was breathing clearly for the rest of the day.
those are my favorites. let me know what yours were! I'm always interested in new discoveries!