Sunday, July 22, 2007

Best (and worst) baby buys

Many of my mommy friends seem to be making babies lately. Whether it's their first of final I seem to be getting a lot of wonderings on what they should be buying. So, I decided to devise my own best and worst baby buys to help you out. Remember however that this is purely my opinion and what's worked for me and Little Lady may not work as well for you. This is simply a small guide based on my best and worst days under my mommy umbrella.

Best breast stuff: My Hooter Hider hands down. Had my hooters not been so well hidden I may have had a much more horrible nursing experience and most definitely would not have been a milk machine this long. This chic, cute cover keeps the breasts and the baby under wraps while still allowing you to adore your baby, keep eye contact, and have easy access. No wrestling with a bouncing baby and a blanket which repeatedly wants to slide away. No wondering what that babies up to under there. I’ve had so many mothers ask me about this invention. It really warrants you the freedom to breastfeed in public and still keep yourself private. Plus, it comes in a plethora of cool patterns!!

Worst breast stuff: I’m not sure my breasts would have given up their milk for anything but my baby… but they definitely didn’t for the Gerber manual breast pump. Plus it had a hundred creases to clean and I never was satisfied with how it was sanitized. PLUS, it broke after only a handful of meetings with my breast. I tried a First Years electric pump for awhile and it worked a little better but my girls just wouldn’t give it up. My advice? I know it’s gross but if you want to bottle feed only on occasion maybe try to borrow a breast pump from a best bud first. If you like it and it works then go out and get it but don’t be like me and waist money when your breasts won’t obey anyway.

Best savy soothers and feeding finds: These two products are a must for teething time. The Sassy Teething feeder, Or Munchkin’s Fresh Food feeder. They are the same concept by different companies and both work wonders. Before I trusted Little Lady’s chewing skills I saved myself a world of worry with this great gadget. Just stick in a cookie, a cracker, or a piece of frozen cantaloupe and baby can crunch away without a chance of choking! And a quick feeding tip: Little Lady loves Munchkin Safety Spoons for being fed. We’ve tried a ton and these are nice for her tiny mouth and soft for her tender teeth. The colour indicator isn’t accurate though but I don’t find that a disadvantage.

Worst (sucky) soothers and feeding flops: I vowed I would NEVER suck my baby’s soother to rinse off rubbish so when I saw the Keep it Kleen pacifier by Razbaby I snatched that sucky up. The reasons for the this soother literally sucking are three fold. 1) It doesn’t actually ALWAYS land safe side down first. ( I tried it a ton of times) 2) It’s terribly uncomfortable, clunky, and leaves lines on Little Lady’s face. 3) Little Lady thinks the only thing worth sucking is a breast, she never even took a bottle. So if your kid sucks ANYTHING then it might save you a few sour tastes of floor scraps… but don’t bother to buy ‘til you know your sweethearts sucking habits. And a tiny feeding tip: Beware plastic spoons that are too round, hard, or have any kind of lip. You’ll just be making a mess.

Best baby toting: Technology takes like two point two seconds flat to advance. When I was pregnant we bought the peg perrego A3 pramette because it was the only stylish stroller that could also pose as a pram. I LOVED this option for Little Lady. She was much more comfortable shopping when she could lay in the pram rather than sit in her car seat. But now peg perrego’s come out with something even better for your baby. The Pliko pramette which would have been the stroller we bought if not for the lack of lying down option. (It did recline but we wanted the real pram). We also love our peg perego primo viaggio car seat carrier. I only wish they made seats for older than infants.

Worst way to wear your baby : Now I’m not suggesting you shouldn’t “wear” your baby, although this may sound like it. Afterall, Little Lady and I were practically Siamese twins ‘til she was six months old. I just never found a carrier I would call worth it. The two I detested most were Cuddlywrap baby carrier and the Snugli by evenflo. Little lady and I were just that…little, and the cuddlywrap has a LOT of fabric. I could never tie her tight enough and always felt I had to hold her anyway. We bought the snugli because Prince Charming thought it was more manly than a wrap and because it was cheaper than a Baby Bjiorn. We should have just bought the Bjiorn. The snugli was so clunky and chunky with so many blasted buckles I hated having it on. Plus Little Lady didn’t like it much. I recently tried on a ring sling at a store…this may be a better solution.

Best bottles and sweet sippers: Never have I seen a sippy so sweet as Nuby . Little Lady loves hers. She won’t even let us suggest switching. I wish I had known about their bottles before I had her because they may have been just the ticket to getting her to take something other than the breast on occasion.

Worst bottle buy: Buying bottles before you know if you’re nursing or not. Have one or two on hand just in case you can’t or won’t be able to become baby’s bottle but otherwise don’t bother. I bought billions of bottles thinking I would pump and maybe another type of nipple would help my breast addict baby bottle feed, it was not to be. Now I have a bundle of unused bottles. Here are a few we definitely didn’t like: Gerber reusable and Gerber comfort hold bottles .

Best baby beauty products: I always said that if I would have a girl our budget would be broken. I’m a shopaholic and I gravitate to anything girly. Thankfully my Little Lady loves all things feminine so far so we haven’t had to fight. One of my favourites is the Gymboree mini curlies (magnetic clips). Little Lady is a little lacking in the luscious locks area but with these amazing magnetic clips you only need a curl of hair for a super cute do. Plus, they don’t pull.

Worst baby wear: Any sleeper that snaps up only one side so you have to scrunch up one leg under that adorable arm pit then twist and tug into place. Major pain and outgrown easier.

Best way to watch your baby: I confess I’m a compulsive worrier. When she’s in bed I worry whether she’s warm, whether she’s cold or whether she’s breathing. I wonder how she’s sleeping and if her sheets are wrinkled. So rather than waking her by walking into her room at all hours, this mother invested in a video monitor. My opinion is that nothing gives your more piece of mind then being able to almost be there in the room with them. This way I also know whether she’s awake and waiting for me and for what reason she’s raising her voice. Another great way to watch is a back seat baby mirror for those rear facing car seats. Little Lady loves to play peek-a-boo with us in hers and it really helps calm her by making her feel like she’s got our company.

Best bum and body products: As new parents we tried the Pampers but our Little Lady’s bum was just too tiny. She needed a more secure, small, shaped fit to avoid the absolutely amazing experience of poop plastered inside her sleeper. Huggies natural fit with hug flex and gentle care with cuddle weave worked wonders. I’m also a firm believer in the Johnsons bedtime bath products. Little Lady has super sensitive skin and reacts easily to perfumes and heavy products. The light lavender of these products is pleasing to the senses, gentle on sensitive skin, and actually DOES work as a seditive. I actually notice a difference in Little Lady’s sleep patterns after we’ve pampered her with a lavender bubble bath and massage. I even consider it calming to use on myself. Another favorite is the Aveeno diaper rash cream. It’s the only one that worked for Little Lady’s sensitive skin. And a tip: Aveeno didn’t clear up the severe raised rashes caused by immunizations and allergies, but a combination of other creams recommended by our public health nurse did. Ask about it at your pharmacy or Make your own .

Worst bum and body products: Personally I hate penaten cream because it only irritated Little Lady’s bum beyond how bad it already was... but others do like it. I’m also opposed to baby oil which I found greasy, not that great smelling, and absolutely no use for and therefore a great big waste of money.

Best (bought) toys: Little Lady is actually less amazed by most toys then by my make-up or someone’s shoe... but here are a few of our best toy BUYS: Her Woozit water filled activity toy by Manhattan Toy has been hands down the best diaper bag toy we’ve bought. It was her first Christmas present at four months and at almost eleven it’s still a pretty sure fire entertainer. It’s bright colours, varied activities, and crazy shapes can keep her occupied for up to an hour and we can cart it anywhere. Another small and sure fire toy is the Baby Einstein Color Kalidescope Discovery Center. She’s also had this one since four months and doesn’t get sick of it….hey this toy even entertains me (and most people who visit want to play with it too)! And not that it matters much but she gets to learn in English, French and Spanish for a brain boosting bonus! She also really enjoys her laugh n’ learn walk and drive car because it has so many activities in one. Her laugh n’ learn learning home and her leap frog learning table for the same reason. She’s had hours of enjoyment out of all three already and these are all toys that will grow with her for at least awhile longer. The Leap Frog Learning table was also instrumental in helping Little Lady learn to stand and to walk around furniture. I’ve heard this from other mothers as well.

Worst toys: Want to teach your tyke road rage and listen to really annoying songs all day? Buy the v tech learn n discover driver. Little Lady got this as a gift and it’s the only toy I can NOT STAND. The voices, songs, and sounds are annoying, rude, and did I mention REALLY annoying!? Plus it short circuits so it sounds like a skipping cd!!!! Definitely do NOT let this driver through your door.

Hope this list is of a little help for all you lovely moms wondering about what you need. Feel free to leave your own favourites or counter statements in the comment section. I would love to hear about your worsts as well. Wondering if I've reviewed any other products? Just ask.


Ike and Jen said...

My goodness, that sure is a lovely list of things to get and not to get. I personally really appreciate all that wonderful info. It sure does help when buying things for our upcoming little one and saves us the trouble of maybe getting something that won't really work that well. It also makes me so excited to actually get to meet our baby! Only 5 1/2 more weeks! We'll talk to you soon!

Stephanie said...

Thanks for sharing your list of best & worst baby buys. I definitely want to try out the bebeaulait nursing cover for my next baby.