Happy Wednesday (already)! Today’s real mama has a really, really awesome list of favorites. Leah’s list is compiled of great pieces of gear, a few unexpected (like the yoga ball – love this!) and all around a list of products that makes a mama’s life easier and sweet little Etta’s life more fun – what is not to love? Big props to Leah for sharing her wise mama advice with us and if you have some favorites you’d love to share we’d love to share ‘em! Email me for the easy details.
Hello! I am a new mom to an adorable and high-spirited (she definitely knows what she likes and dislikes!) 2-month old – Etta. We live in Minneapolis in an 1800 sf house in a cute little neighborhood filled with parks and bike trails. Etta is a winter baby and this winter has been a doozy – polar vortex mean anything to anyone? While I was pregnant, I read every real moms favorite baby product blog post. They are so helpful! I created my baby registry from many of the featured moms favs. Here is a list of things that both Etta and I love and could not imagine the last two months without:
1. Fisher-Price Rock n’ Play Sleeper – this gets featured all the time because it’s worth it’s weight in gold. Etta sleeps and naps in this gem. She will not sit in any other baby apparatus (we’ve tried them all – swings, bouncers, etc.) but she loves her Rock N Play. It kind of cradles her in, keeps her a little elevated and has a vibrating function. It is lightweight and highly portable and you can wash the cover. All a must when it comes to baby gear!
2. Miracle Blanket Swaddler - these have been a lifesaver! Etta started sleeping in 5 hour chunks at night starting at 4 weeks once we figured out she loved to be swaddled (it took us a few sleepless nights to figure this out – okay more than a few to be honest.) I also use this to swaddle her for her naps and she gives me a couple 2-3 hour naps most days when swaddled up. This is the only blanket she can’t break free from – giving us all a lot more rest! I highly recommend watching the video tutorial on how to get the technique down; it can be a little intimidating at first.
3. Marpac Dohm-DS Dual Speed Sound Conditioner – best white noise machine out there in my opinion! Etta missed the womb when she came out – and we soon realized the louder the white noise, the better to calm her down. This one has 2 volumes and we keep ours on high. The first few weeks we ran it almost all day around Etta, now we turn it on for naps and bedtime.
4. Yoga/exercise ball – my kid loves to bounce! One day I figured out she loved the up and down motion so I sat on my yoga ball and bounced her and she was a happy babe. This is actually what we use now to calm her down at night when she gets fussy and it helps lull her to sleep – and her father and I get a workout while we’re soothing her.
5. Sassy Go Go Bugs – these are Etta’s first toy that she actually responded too. We hang them on her carseat or wave them over her when she’s laying on the floor and she loves to watch them and coo at them. She especially likes the one that jingles.
6. Zippered and footed one-pieces – Baby Gap’s are my favorite! I love the footed one pieces that zip; they are easy to get on your baby (especially a newborn when you are a first-time parent and nervous about putting clothes over your baby’s head) and they keep baby’s feet warm, because really, who can keep baby socks on a baby? The Baby Gap ones are very soft and cute and fit my baby perfectly. In fact, these one-pieces are still the only thing her father will dress her in.
7. Honest Company diapers and wipes – best diapers and wipes in the business. Not only are Honest diapers cute, chemical free, and come from a great company – but they really work. In my opinion, they contain blow-outs the best. They may be a little bit more than other diapers, but they are worth it. The wipes are great because they clean everything from baby’s bottom to baby’s toys. Etta personally loves the skull designs. I really like that they get delivered right to my door. It’s been hard to get out and who doesn’t love to get a package?
8. Baby Jogger City Mini GT - I admit, we haven’t had a chance to use our stroller yet – it has been too cold! I can’t wait for spring to get out and hit the trails with Etta. Her father and I test drove many a stroller, did a ton of research and settled on this one. I love it! It has amazing wheels that roll easily no matter what the surface (we have gravel trails by us so it was important to get a stroller that could handle gravel) and has a great turning radius. Another huge plus? It folds up super easily with one hand! I mastered it with one try – it is also not that heavy.
9. Baby Dolphin Burp Cloths (available on Etsy – Baby Dolphin Designs) – these were a gift and took me by surprise at how great they are. They are so soft and made from organic cotton and velour and have the cutest designs. They do a great job of soaking up baby spit and Etta doesn’t mind one bit when you rub them on her face to clean up her “milk face.” I think she rather enjoys their softness! These will now be one of my go-to shower gifts.
10. Ubbi Diaper Pail – I wanted a diaper pail that didn’t look like one, one where I could use my own garbage bags and one that contained the stink. This one fit the bill! It’s quite a bit more than the plastic ones on the market, but it’s worth it. Right now we are emptying it 2 or 3 times a week. We have the hot pink one – they come in all sorts of colors to match your nursery or wherever you’d like to put it.
11. Newborn pictures (frame): I would advise new mamas to get newborn pictures done. Those first week images they are able to capture are priceless and your baby changes so fast. I will always cherish Etta’s baby pictures – our photographer (Gina Zeidler) did an amazing job!