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Archive for February, 2013

On a fairly regular basis I have friends ask (either directly or via a general question on Facebook) what baby items they should register for.  I am REALLY passionate about baby gear and I have the strength of winning others over (via StrengthsFinder test) so I have a really hard time giving them a good answer.  I want to cover all the bases and tell them WHY I liked/disliked certain items.  So this is my attempt to compile all of those thoughts in one place so I can point my friends here for my thoughts on baby gear three years into this parenting thing…

(This is going to be really boring for 90% of the world’s population and super exciting for the other 10%. Sorry if you’re in the majority)

-Carseats–we had the Graco Snugride, and it was great.  I think the Chicco Keyfit is wonderful too.  I wouldn’t worry too much about your baby carrier though…anything will work.  Your convertible carseat on the other hand is the one your child will use for years.  Annelise has been in hers for over 2 years and isn’t even close to outgrowing it.  Both of our girls are in the Britax Boulevard, and I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it.  It has an awesome headrest and reclines.  With all the traveling we do, it’s amazing.  

-Strollers–this is probably the hardest thing to recommend because it is SO dependent on your life situation. My life on staff with Cru gives me very different stroller needs than a mom who lives in a small town versus a mom who lives in Chicago.  For me, I’d say get a stroller that you love.  This is not an area to skimp.  If I had it all to do over again, I’d probably just get a BOB jogging stroller and nothing else.  I do NOT recommend the travel systems.  They are big and bulky and heavy (with a few exceptions), and when your child is old enough to actually sit up in them, you’d probably just want to get an umbrella stroller.  We did have a Snap n Go frame, and I absolutely loved it.  Highly recommend.  We have the double BOB jogging stroller.  I love it, but after spending a summer with a friend who had the inline Phil and Ted jogging stroller, I’d probably get that.  A little easier to maneuver.

-Monitor–I have mixed thoughts on this.  We don’t have a video monitor, and I was really thankful for that when I had little babies…I would have constantly watched it and worried about my itty bitty babies.  When we switched Annelise to a big girl bed however, I think it would have been wonderful to have one.  

-Baby containment devices–bouncy seats rock! We’ve survived without a swing, but I always said that I wouldn’t hesitate to go buy one if we needed it.  My babies were fine without it so I appreciated having one less item in my house. If you have a two story house (and especially if you have another toddler in the house), I recommend having a bouncy seat for each floor.  (I wouldn’t buy two full price, but find a second one at a yard sale or borrow from a friend).  This is nice because you just need a safe place to keep the baby on both floors.  

-Exersaucers–Buy one! I was so hesitant to get one.  They’re so big and bulky and brightly colored and take up your entire living room.  But I’m telling you, if you want to cook or shower after your child reaches five months or so, get one.  I can’t recommend this more highly.

-Pack n Play–Get one. They rock.

-Boppy/Bumbo seat–I really like having a Boppy, but the lifespan is really short (like 8 weeks or so for us).  However during that short lifespan, we used it all the time.  There are so many people who sing praises of the Bumbo seat, but both of our girls hated it and figured out how to wiggle their leg out and fall out of it in no time.  I do use it for early solid food feedings so I’m not getting rid of it, but I would NEVER pay full price for one.

-Bottles–everyone has different thoughts on this. Avent works for us.  I would recommend starting simple (like Avent or Born Free) and only use some of the more complicated bottles (like Dr. Browns) if you have to…so much more to clean.

-High chairs–We have a wooden one from Carter’s. I highly recommend it.  I know a lot of people use the ones that hook onto one of your chairs.  If we had a six seat dining table, I’d want to do that, but since we only have four chairs, I’m glad we have a separate high chair. It’s very convenient for when we have guests over.

-Baby carrier–Ergo, Ergo, Ergo! I absolutely love this thing.  Even now, I can carry Maribelle in it FOR HOURS and not feel a twinge of soreness the next day.  It is incredible. I had the Baby Bjorn before the Ergo, and the same cannot be said.

-Other–some kind of swaddling device (we used the swaddlers from Kiddopotomus, but I’ve heard good things about the Halo sleep sack swaddlers and the blankets by aiden & anise)

That’s all I can think of right now. I’m sure I’ll be back to edit this post in the future.  

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