Monday, May 7, 2012

A few of my favorite things

Oh hai!  So, life with a baby is BUSY to say the least!  I had every intention of keeping up the blog much better than I have the past four months, but yeah...didn't happen.  By the time Colin goes down for the night (now around 7-ish), I'm so exhausted that blogging is usually the last thing I'm thinking about. 

Anyway, this blog isn't going to become Baby Central, but I figured a few posts about some of the most helpful baby products would still be in line with what this blog is.  So, here are a few of the things that made our life so, so, so much easier the past 4 months.  (I'm not getting paid for any of this; this is nothing more than my opinions.)

Aden + Anais Swaddle Blankets--these blankets are awesome.  They're muslin, so they're lightweight and breathable, but they're huge, so it's easy to swaddle babykins in these.  I have 8 of them and I'm glad I bought so many: I use them in the stroller, around the house when it's a little drafty, and I keep one rolled up on either side of Colin in the crib so he can't move around too much.  I tried the Miracle Blanket and the Swaddle Me and while those do a great job of keeping him swaddled, it's like putting together origami, which isn't great for those every-three-hour-during-the-night diaper changes that happen the first few weeks. 

Angel Care Video Monitor--This monitor rocks.  We transitioned Colin from the Pack 'n' Play in our room to his crib when he was about 5 weeks old and this monitor was crucial in allowing us all to sleep better.  The video monitor has night vision and a zoom and panning ability, so you can see if your little one's eyes are open or not before walking in the room and definitely waking them up.  Genius.  The motion sensor that goes under the mattress calmed my new mom fears a bit (an alarm sounds if there's no motion detected for 20 seconds--like if they were to stop breathing).  A few false alarms just about gave me a heart attack, but adjusting the sensitivity settings took care of that issue really easily.

BOB stroller--Words can't express how much I love this stroller.  Yes, it's a bit on the pricey side (but it's not NEARLY as bad as some strollers!), but  It, like, glides.  It turns on a dime, is super quiet, and it's ridiculously easy to fold to put in the car.  Plus it's orange. 

Itsbeen Timer--I fully realize that some people might roll their eyes at this one because it's so ridiculously simple that it's dumb.  But that's also why it's genius.  There are four buttons on it: a diaper, a bottle, a sleep button, and a miscellaneous button.  You press the button when you change a diaper (or feed the baby, or put him to sleep or whatever) and it just keeps track of how long it's been since you've done that particular thing.  When you're completely sleep deprived in those first few weeks, this is brilliant.  It doesn't do anything fancy and so it's super easy to figure out.  In the first few weeks, I used the miscellaneous button to track how long it'd been since I'd taken my painkillers (or antibiotics during my bout with mastitis). 

Rock 'N' Play--another stupidly simple item that's genius.  It's basically a foldable bassinet that holds the baby at an angle and cradles them in a way that the crib can't.  We used this a TON in the first few weeks  and still use it in the family room mostly as a safe place to put the baby when I just need to set him down for a few minutes.  It's great for babies with reflux because of the angle and it makes them feel all cozy and secure because of the sides.  We borrowed this from a friend, but it's about $50 and I'd gladly pay that.

So those are just a few things that helped get us over the past four months.  Obviously, all babies are different, but these things worked for us and have been worth their weight in gold.  Hope this helps someone out there!
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