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Sunday, June 5, 2011

Top 10 Must Have Baby Items

With several of my friends having babies in the near future, I have been asked several times what the top must haves are. I must admit, when registering for baby items, it was VERY overwhelming as there are A LOT of products out there. I quickly learned once Addison came, there are really only about 6 items that I use on a daily basis and I MUST have! Please note, this does not include the basics like car seat, stroller, crib, glider, bottles, etc. Here they are in no particular order, drum roll please........

1. Halo Swaddler- I have talked about this many times in my blog but it is a MUST have if you want your baby to sleep. I swear this assists in Addison giving us more hours of sleep than most babies usually get. The key is to put babies arms by their side and wrap tight, I mean TIGHT! This is the difference between a 20 minute nap and a 2 hour nap or 4 hours through the night or 6 hours through the night. I personally like the Halo Swaddler but there are several other products out there that serve the same purpose. It is IMPOSSIBLE for the baby to get their arms out, and if they do, they are the next Houdini!

2. Rock and Play- Yet another product that I have talked about many times on my blog. This is an amazing product and I am not the only one that believes so. Check out Babies R Us's reviews for the product. 5 out of 5 stars with 610 people rating it. There is not one bad review for this product, it is THAT good! This product has no bells and whistles and is pretty basic. The concept is that it is wider at the top, gets smaller towards the end and has a deep butt perfect for baby to get nice and snuggly in it. We have used this for a variety of things; naps, place to put baby in the morning while getting ready for work, by bedside so you don't have to get out of bed, etc. I can't explain how much we love this product. It is guarenteed after Addie's morning 5-6am feeding we can put her in this in our bedroom and she is back to sleep in minutes and for another 2-3 hours. It has a slight rocking feature that is good to rock baby back to sleep if fussy. We use this with the Swaddle blanket and it is pure heaven (please note: this is not where Addison sleeps at night. She sleeps in her crib and we bring her into our room and put her in this after her morning feeding).

3. Activity Mat- The one we have is awesome. Thanks Jennifer and Blake!! This one has lights and music (music that is not annoying) and can provide a couple of hours of endless fun. Who would have thought a mat that has lights and music could provide so much fun for a baby? We put Addison on this several times throughout the day, especially in the evenings when preparing dinner and she is occupied enough so we can get dinner prepared, bottles washed and kitchen cleaned up. We love!

4. Swing and Vibrating Chair these are both useful for pretty much the same reason. A place to put baby to sleep in instead of a crib for naps. We have the Fisher Price Lamb versions of both swing and chair. The swing has several great features. It can swing either front to back or left to right. Addison prefers front to back but we change it up sometimes on her for something different. It also has night music and other sound features, a mobile that has a mirror and spins and it's super cushiony and soft. If they made an adult sized once, I am certain I would sit in it. The chair is pretty basic with a vibration feature and music. Addison usually only sits in this if she is Swaddled but the vibration puts her to sleep rather quickly. Both good products and happy with them both.

5. Light Up Mobile for Crib- this is like baby crack, especially the one we have. It has 3 different music settings (they aren't annoying either), nature sounds, and heatbeat/womb sound. It has a projection that illuminates the mobile and moves which engages the baby and keeps them company. Once baby is big enough to move around in crib, you can remove the mobile part the images are projected on the ceiling. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this. During middle of the night feedings, this mobile kept me company by playing music. Additional, it produces just enough light that we were able to keep the lights off during diaper changes or preparing bottles. Oh, it also has a remote so you can turn it on without opening to door if you want! This is a must have. 

6. Snap N Go by Baby Trend- this is a must have for us right now because it is so lightweight and easily transportable. Basically, this is a lightweight (less than 10lbs) collapsible stroller that the carseat will snap right into. We keep this in the back of our SUV and use it all the time. The biggest thing is it fits in the back of our car. Our travel system stroller is so big that it doesn't fit easily. This is instrumental when traveling in the airport to and from VA. We were able to check the car seat, base and stroller (and incidentally, the carseat AND base fit on the Snap N Go together so if you need the base, this is AWESOME) at the gate and not have to worry about checking it in at the counter. The great thing about this stroller is that it fits most carseats as well so you don't have to worry about purchasing a separate stroller just for your preferred carseat.

Other items that I really enjoy but aren't necessarily must haves:

1. Moby Wrap
2. Mirror for Car
3. Swaddle Blankets (different than the Swaddler and found only at Target)
4. Avent Bottles
5. Security Blanket (Addison loves something up against her face when she sleeps and this helps her fall to sleep or calm down VERY fast and it's nice and small) 
6. Boppy Pillow 

I am sure as Addison gets older the MUST HAVES will change, but for her first 3 months of life, these are our necessities! What are yours?

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