I’m only 7 1/2 months into being a mama, so I’m not expert by any means, but these items have been my favorites things to use with Prim so far this year. Or if you’re pregnant and planning a registry, here’s a list of things I use and totally recommend!
Bath and Diapering
I like to keep the products I use on Prim as natural and basic as possible, but now that the weather has gotten colder, she’s developed a bit of eczema (clearly she’s her father’s daughter with that sensitive skin!) so the Dr. Bronner’s soap I normally use on her isn’t cutting it for the winter months. I tried a number of lotions designed for eczema relief, but the Aveeno is by far my favorite and has actually made a real difference with Prim’s skin.
As for bath time, the Summer Infant sponge has been so great (and it’s SO CHEAP). When she was teeny-tiny I used it in the kitchen sink to bathe her, and 7 1/2 months later we’re still using it in the regular tub with her — I can’t recommend it enough! It’s also great if you’re low on storage space (seriously, how do people store those gigantic baby baths?)
I’ve already done multiple posts about Prim starting solids and how I make her baby food, so none of this should really be a surprise. The Lifefactory bottles are a little pricey, but I love that they’re glass rather than plastic, and they can convert into a sippy cup when your baby is a little older, which I think makes the price tag a little more bearable (because glass sippy cups are surprisingly hard to find!)
I ended up going with the Kiinde bottle warmer after doing a bunch of research and finding out that it’s the best bottle warmer for use with breastmilk because it uses water rather than steam to warm the bottle. It takes a little longer than other bottle warmers because of this, but I like knowing that it’s maintaining as much of the nutrients in the breastmilk as possible since it’s not heating too quickly or getting too hot. If you’re going to be heating up formula, I’d recommend a different bottle warmer (one that’s cheaper and faster) because formula isn’t as easily compromised by heat as breastmilk is.
We try to stick to toys that are made from natural materials like wood, natural rubber or food-grade silicone, since we know that most (or all) end up going in Prim’s mouth at one point or another. We ended up buying the IKEA play gym on a whim shortly after Prim was born, as I wasn’t really into the crazy neon play mats/play gyms I saw everywhere else, but also didn’t want to spend $150 on a beautiful wood one. The IKEA one ended up being an awesome purchase (it’s only $30!) — Prim still plays with it, and I love that it’s not a hot-pink eyesore in the middle of the living room.
Out and About
I think there are plenty of strollers out there that are awesome, and what works for you is really personal. You should research strollers based on what you like to do and your family’s living situation. Someone who hikes frequently or runs outdoors is obviously going to have different needs from someone who needs a stroller for a tight, urban environment. We wanted a general, all-purpose stroller that was both compact and easy to maneuver. We ended up choosing ours because I have severe restrictions on how much weight I can lift due to my bad back, and our stroller was the lightest all-terrain, urban stroller we could find.
I’ve already posted about baby wraps, but haven’t talked about structured carriers before. We initially got the Ergo 360 carrier, but I couldn’t put the freaking thing on by myself (which, uh, is kind of a deal-breaker), so we returned it and tried on a bunch of other carriers. I liked the Baby Bjorn, but we ultimately chose the Beco because it fit KC better (and he likes carrying Prim in the carrier, whereas I use the wrap more). The Beco is really comfy and easy to use, and it’s awesome that it allows us to wear Prim in four different positions (front facing in, front facing out, side carry, and back carry).
The Halo sleep sack with wings is awesome for when you’re transitioning your baby out of the swaddle for sleeping. Also, if you have a baby with eczema (or even if you don’t), the humidifier is a must. It’s actually so awesome I’m considering getting one for mine and KC’s room!
If you’d like to know what I use for anything else baby-related that’s not on the list, leave a comment and I’ll respond! 🙂