August 4, 2010

my mommy tips

So its Wednesday (honestly, I thought it was Tuesday), and unfortunately I don't have a post for you. My lovely blogger who was scheduled today gave me decent notice that she wouldn't be able to have her post ready, but the past few days I failed, and never contacted my other girls to see if they could fill the spot. So I apologize that you don't get to peek into anyone's day this morning. Forgive me!

So... I thought I would share some more of my favorite baby products thus far, as well as few tips, and things I wish I had known before I had Ryann.

My most used baby products:
1. Halo Sleep Sack Swaddle
Ryann is a little escape artist most of the time, so at first we thought she hated to be swaddled. Ok, well, I think she did and probably still does, BUT she scratches her face like mad when she is tired/asleep/waking up/etc. This little number was the one of the things we tried that she actually couldn't wiggle her arms out of. I'm sure there are other swaddle blankets out there that would have worked (I never tried the miracle blanket or anything) but I feel like this will make transitioning to just a sleep sack easier. And I am all for a sleep sack versus any blankets in the crib at all.

2. Arms Reach Mini CoSleeper
Our bedroom is on the small side, but I knew I wanted Ryann to sleep in our room for a while. At first I wanted to use a snuggle nest inbewteen Chris and I, but during our test run (sans baby) he woke up face down in the snuggle nest. Uh, not going to work. The mini fit perfectly next to our bed, and I love that with the side rolled down I could easily reach over and soothe Ryann if needed. Some of the reviews complain that the mattress is horrible, but I don't think it is all that bad, and Ryann never seemed to mind.

3. Boppy
I didn't end up breastfeeding, but I still love my boppy. For a while we used it to prop Ry up so she could play with toys on her playmat. Then she enjoyed doing tummy time on it. Right now it is serving as a wall so she can't roll over all the time when she is playing :o). I'm pretty sure it is going to come in handy when she starts attempting to sit up.

4. Chicco KeyFit 30 Infant Seat
This car seat is extremely easy to use, and although I haven't tried any other brands I am very happy with it. It seems safe, sturdy, comfortable enough. It doesn't fit in the top portion of shopping carts (but I don't think that is super safe anyway, whatever). Now we did buy the travel system, and while I like the stroller, I don't love it. I think eventually I will want something different, but for now it works.

5. Dr. Browns Bottles
These bottles have a million parts, which yes, is annoying to clean. But after a couple weeks using these guys (we started with some cheap gerber bottles) Ry doesn't seem to have any gas problems. I love the wide neck bottles because 1, they are easy to put the formula in (have you ever mixed a bottle at 2am? it is hard to get the formula in a small whole without making a huge mess :o) and 2, again I am not breastfeeding, but the wide neck ones seem like they would make switching between bottle and breast easier.

6. Summer Infant Video Montior
We actually have the Summer Infant Slim & Secure Hand Held Color Video Monitor (that is a mouthful!). The monitor does have its slight glitches (apparently our wireless internet and the video monitor compete sometimes) but overall I am fairly happy with it. I love being able to see what Ry is doing in her crib. I'm a bit of a worrier, so it is nice to know whether those noises really warrent me checking on her, or if she is just being a loud sleeper.

7. Bright Starts Automatic Bouncer
When looking at baby gear while I was pregnant, I really wanted stuff that was neutral. This bouncer fit the bill, had decent reviews, and I like the fact that it actually bounced. Looking back, neutral quiet baby gear is not the way I would go again (Ry gets bored more quickly) but overall the seat does a great job of giving us a spot to have Ryann sit while we are eating. She used to nap in the bouncer while I took a shower.

8. Travel Swing
I've mentioned the part where Ry would only sleep in the swing for several weeks right? Life saver (more or less, until you really want to break the baby of that habit). Again while looking for baby products I wanted something either neutral, or in a fabric that I deemed acceptable for my house. Well I couldn't find a swing that I thought looked good, that plugged in, and had good reviews, so we didn't buy one at first. But then we went through our nap issues, and on a frazzled weekend afternoon I had Chris run to target and buy whatever travel swing he could find. It worked like a charm for the napping, and it was great that we could take it to my parents house if we wanted.

9. Munchkin Formula Dispenser
This thing is great for throwing in the diaper bag, OR, for having formula ready to go in the middle of the night :o).

My mom made the ones I use, but in general, I suggest have several. We go through at least 3 a day with our spitty baby, and more like 5. So if you don't want to do laundry too often (which who are we kidding, I hate laundry) I would stock up.

Diapers & Wipes
After working in daycare and preschool for a few years, I definitely had my opinion on diapers and wipes before Ryann was born. My favorite diapers are Pampers. I have yet to have a problem with the dry max ones (as far as rashes are concerned). I have only had one blowout, and one leak. For wipes I prefer the Huggies wipes, they are nice and thick and don't smell weird. I HATE the Pampers wipes. I think the Kirkland wipes from Costco? are alright as well.

I wish I had...
:: known that when clothing says 3 months, or 6 months, that is generally up to whatever age is listed on the size. I doubt that the fleece Cater's pj's I have in the '6 month' size will get much use in this 100 degree heat.

:: read books about parenting/babies BEFORE Ryann was born. I was so focused on the pregnancy and upcoming labor that I didn't read anything on babies. Right now I would personally recommend Baby411 and Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Child. Even though we haven't done any sleep training with Ry yet, the latter book comes with some great insight about sleep.

:: taken advantage of our sleepy baby in the first 4 weeks. I kept thinking that was the hard part, but who was I kidding? I should have taken more naps :o).

Again, sorry for the lack of 'a day in the life' today, but I hope this will tide you over. I considered doing another post about my day already, because it is crazy how much it has changed in the last month. Ry goes to be at 7:30 now, only takes 30 minute naps, and pretty much tells me what we are going to do :o).

Have a good one!


Mrs. D said...

Thank you so much for this, Ashley! Seriously it helps a ton! Luckily I have a lot of the items you love, so that makes me feel lots better about what we got :)

Kat said...

Great post - love reading about what other products other parents love!

Kenzie said...

oh man..
-first let me say that after weeks and weeks of spending our breaks deciding which swing was best, i find it very funny that you just had chris go buy one..
-secondly i thoroughly miss our analysis of diapers and wipes! lol
-and last but not least.. i still thing that ryann needs that giant carrot dresser or the princess carriage bed for 25,000 :)

shawna @ styleberryBLOG said...

Hey girlie! As you move into the next phase, thought you might like my recent post on baby food. :) Looks like you are enjoying mommyhood--fab, isn't it?:)

Aja said...

Thanks, I really appreciate hearing what new moms love and use! I am also trying to find neutral items that will go with our home decor and aren't too bright or babyish.

One question- do you recommend both the bouncer and the travel swing, or can we get by with just the swing?? I'd like to have as little extra gear sitting around as possible.. Thank you!

Ashley said...


I'm sure you could get away with just the swing. For me it was nice to have both because the swing stayed put in the family room for naps, and the bouncer got moved around to wherever I needed a seat for her. Part of that is because my swing doesn't have a toy bar, so it didn't really keep her occupied if I wanted her to just hang out for a bit. So if you can find a swing with a removable toy bar I think that would be perfect :o).


Carrie said...

thanks for the fabulous post! i LOVE reading reviews on what moms think of the baby products they use!

ps- i worked in a daycare too and 100% agree on the pampers diapers, huggies/costco wipes. i had to use pampers wipes when we were out on the go today and they were terrible! why do they feel so slimey?!?!

julie said...

I just found your blog and am definitely following now! love it!

I loved my boppy- I actually had 2! And I LOVE pampers diapers! :)