Tuesday, June 10, 2014

My Mommy Must Have Gadgets

We all know I shop a lot. I shop more than your average human. It is no surprise that when I found out my little man was coming, I went into shopping overload. I stocked up on everything, big and small! Here are a few of my favorite things:

1. Maxi Cosi AP Infant Car Seat
This carseat is so light and airy. It fit my small baby perfectly from day one. It fits 5 - 22 pounds and it basically molds to the baby's body. It is always hard to see a sleeping baby with their head hunched over uncomfortably. We never had that with this seat. Twenty-two pounds is heavy. Parker just barely hit it at 16 months. You can use it for so long!
Recommendation: get extra bases for every car you plan to be in for the next year or so. I got one for my car, Eric's, and my mom's. Don't wait until after you have the baby! It is hard and time consuming to use the seatbelt and not as safe as using the base.

2. Bugaboo Cameleon
This bad boy is a little pricey, but worth every penny. The Bugaboo Cameleon comes with the seat and a bassinet! That bassinet worked miracles. He loved it. We went on walks and he just stayed nice and cozy, without any straps all over him. When I would cook, I would just lay him in there and stare while cooking. Yep. I did a lot of staring. I guess that was my first three months with him. Staring and kissing. You can add a kick board that you place on the back and your older babe can stand on it. PS They have an awesome warranty. I accidentally broke the bottom basket and all they needed was a photo and they sent me a brand new one immediately! I was shocked. 
Recommendation: if you are going to have kids close together, get the Bugaboo Donkey. It extends to  a two seater, but when you just have one, you get a nice little storage basket!

You'd be surprised how quickly and how forcefully your milk will come in. A few days postpartum, I woke up huge and it was oddly lumpy. Not know whether I would breastfeed, I didn't purchase a pump before hand. I just assumed I could get one when I needed one. Wrong. I needed one and I needed it BAD. He wasn't eating as much as I was producing. In fact, sometimes I was producing so much that he just couldn't latch. I had to pump a little bit before I fed him. This pump was so easy to grab and go. I spend a lot of time at my mom's and everything was so convenient to bring. 
Recommendation: get all the accessories. Get a lot of bottles and get an extra set of connectors and shields. Sometimes you don't have time to wash in-between pumpings and it makes things easier. 

I wouldn't get one of those "breathing" under the bed sheet monitors. I would constantly freak out, I know it. I know me. Not only are those dangerous (there was a recall because they were linked to strangulation), but they are so sensitive that the moment your baby squirms, you will jolt out of bed and run to the baby's room faster than Uriah Bolt could ever dream of. It isn't a good way to live, especially when you are already so exhausted with feeds. That blast of adrenaline will keep you up all night. I opted to get the video monitor and love it. We weren't consistent co-sleepers, it kind of depended on the circumstances of the evening. The one time  a week he was in his crib, we'd watch him fall asleep. It actually comes in handy more now than when he was little. He has officially learned to crawl out of his crib and I have to watch  when he starts squirming to make sure to get him before he breaks free and gets hurt. 

I loved this carrier in the beginning! Well, I love it now too, but in the beginning, this was Parker's go to place. He fit so perfectly in the infant insert. I could do everything with him right next to me. We went on walks, vacuumed, conquered cheer competitions, and just casually hung out with family. He absolutely loved sleeping in this. He also enjoyed the back carry. Unfortunately, there came a time where he didn't want to just nuzzle up to mama. He wanted to see the world! I felt super uncomfortable doing hip carry with the Ergo. 

This carry is the one I use daily, now. When Parker wanted to be nosey, we switched to this carrier. I was not comfortable using this when he was teeny tiny. I probably did it all wrong and I will definitely try again next time. We are just comfy in the Sakura Bloom wrap. He can see everything going on and wave and play. His arms are not constrained and he needs that freedom to do all sorts of activities! Five star rating from us!

When the time came to upgrade to a big boy carseat, I knew I wanted to go with Britax or Maxi Cosi. Britax's safety record is out of this world! This seat is going to be with him for along while and it was important it was a good quality product. I went through Buy Buy Baby with the sales guy and had him explain everything. I ended up leaving that day with two of the Advocates. I love everything about it, from the straps, shape/size, to the cushioning for baby boy. 

Okay, okay, so I wasn't exactly loyal to Britax. I needed another carseat, one for my mom's car. We spend a lot of time with my mom. At least three or four days a week, my mom calls me and says she is going to be at my house in fifteen minutes we are going to xyz. It is only logical that she has a car seat too. As soon as I touched this bad boy I was wishing for a grown up on. I cannot believe how comfortable it feels! It is so nice and squishy, Parker just sinks into it. For some reason, it always feels cooler temperature wise. I just love this one! 

This high chair starts for baby and grows with child (or adult if you look at the creepy photos Stokke post on the box). It is simple and stylish and has a lot of different size options. We have a tray or we push him right up to the table. That is his favorite option. How dare we not have him right next to us! He is a little silly goose. But, really, we will be buying one of these high chairs for each baby. I can't believe how great this chair is for toddlers. 

This pillow made an uncomfortable situation comfortable. It wraps around your body and you set is where you are comfortable on your stomach. It has these little bumps where baby's head rests. We did not use it for the first few months, but around two months, it was our go to gadget. We were both comfortable and I will keep using this bad boy. 

Oh, the things you do for your baby! This freaks my husband out. He will not even touch it, let alone use it. This is the most effective booger sucker you will ever find. You control the suction amount and aim it to get what you need to get. Nothing has ever even come near my mouth, there is a filter to prevent it. This thing works miracle!

You have to be very careful when you breastfeed and supplement. Nipple confusion can cause a drop in milk supply or your baby may not want to nurse at all! It is important to find a bottle that can closely replicate the real thing. This bottle does. It is shaped similarly to a real breast and we had no confusion. Definitely our favorite bottle.

These blankets are worth every penny. Parker was Houdini. He could escape every swaddle. That little hand always ended up right at his face. These blankets were no exception, but he usually fell asleep before you could escape. We swaddled him for a very long time. I believe we did not stop until he was about eight months. He loved it though, so why not do it? They are light and airy, so perfect for Arizona. They made impromptu nursing covers, stroller and carseat covers, and perfect play mats!

At the end of the day, every mama has her go to gadgets. These are a few of my favorite. What are your mama must haves? Or what brands do you prefer for carseats or strollers? Let me know! I want a huge family, so I will hopefully have many chances to try things out!

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