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Tuesday
Jun122012

Practical Parenting: Infant Gear Top 10 - Beyond the Basics

When preparing for the arrival of your little bundle of joy, of course you need a crib, a car seat, diapers, a stroller, etc.  But here's my list of some of my favorite baby gear items that made my life easier with an infant or toddler in our house.  Can you survive the first 12 months of your baby's life without these things?  Absolutely.  But will these things make the chaotic first few months a little easier or less messy?  Absolutely!

1. Spooneez: A fantastic product designed by two stay-at-home moms right here in Winston-Salem to contain roll up the mess after you've fed your baby and the spoon is wet...Spoonez contains two pockets to secure your utensils, while an extra long pocket can hold anything from a pacifier, to baby food, or wipes. Fold over, roll up, secure with velcro or tie, and your mess is gone, keeping your diaper bag, purse or pocket clean!"  And the "Travel Pack"  design is great for storing crayons on the go!

2. Inchworm Orbit Labels:  The Original Orbit Label is every parent's solution for labeling bottles, sippy cups, snack containers and other various drink/toiletry containers. This innovative product is non-adhesive, reusable and personalized to meet your needs. These dishwasher and microwave safe orbit labels are awesome!

3. ICKY Wet Bag - there are HUNDREDS of times when we've been out and about,  and I've needed a place to put something sticky or wet  (a half eaten snack, a soaked burp cloth, an outfit when the diaper leaks, etc) - the Icky Wet bag is the perfect solution.  Pretty meets practical in this great "wet proof" zip bag. Lined with ProCare, a waterproof barrier fabric and a great size for on the go.

 4. Boon Squirt Spoon:  Another genius invention to make meals on the go less messy! This contraption allows you to put pureed baby food, applesauce, yogurt, etc. inside the spoon (sealable with a lid closure over the spoon).  When your little one is hungry, just pop off the lid and squeeze the contents out onto the spoon!

5. Tiny Diner Portable Placemat: Anyone seeing a trend with my Top 10 picks and avoiding mess!  Here's another great product for eating away from home.  The Tiny Diner is a ruber placemat with suction cups and a cool "pocket" trough area to catch crumbs that can be used in restaurants, picnic tables, etc. when your little one is eating.  Instantaneous clean surface for Junior to eat off of... and when dinner is over just wipe it off, roll it up and stores it in the bottom of your purse or diaper bag.   

 

6. Padalilly: Another great local invention (designed by a woman from Charlotte, NC)!  The padalily is a cute cushion to ease the weight of the heavy as lead infant car seat carrier when you hold it in the crook of your elbow.  It doesn't magically make your baby light as a feather, but it takes the pain down a notch (and they are super cute).

7. WubbaNubThe concept is simple - a little stuffed animal attached to the pacifier....and it makes your life easier in so many ways!  It's easier to reach the pacifier from the front seat of the car when it falls out of your baby's mouth....It's easier to hold the pacifier in their mouth while doing any number of things.....And for those of you who have seen babies do the "pacifier push" when in attempt to start sucking vigorously on the pacifier, they inadvertantly push it out of their mouths - this helps prevent the "pacifier push." 

It's not weighted so it still easily comes out, but the little legs/arms of the animal help your little guy hold on to it.  We had the lion.  We named him Lambert (see photo of Henry age 2.5 months and his beloved "Lambert the Friendly Lion").  Lambert went EVERYWHERE with us for the first 3-4 months of Henry's life! 

8. Hooter Hider: If you are breastfeeding and modest (like me), this is a life saver!  This cleverly designed shield allows you to breastfeed and maintain your modesty.  There is even an area that allows you to visualize the baby's head which is very helpful if your little one sometimes has trouble latching on correctly like my fella did!

9. Exercise Ball: I know this may seem like a strange item to find on a "Infant Gear" Top 10 list but hear me out....My niece, Sloane, was a happy baby as long as she was in constant motion and being held at least 90% of the time she was awake!  The Baby Bjorn worked sometimes...but holding her and bouncing on an exercise ball never failed! My son, Henry, also loved the motion of bouncing on the ball and we lulled him to sleep during his fussy period bouncing away (3-7 weeks of age were a bit hairy in our house).  Our friends have an adorable little baby girl who had a terrible bout of colic and again - the exercise ball worked it's magic!  Give it a try!

10. Sophie the Giraffe: I have no idea why, but every baby that I've ever seen who has this toy is OBSESSED with it!  It is a cute squeaky toy that doubles as a teether.  The design makes it easy to hold on to and kids just gum and chew away having a grand old time!  

 

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Reader Comments (2)

These are great...thanks for sharing!

June 28, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKB

I don't have any kids of my own (yet), but I've given most of my friends' babies a Sophie the Giraffe and the little ones all seem to love it! I will definitely be referencing your list when I have a baby!

July 4, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEmily Thrasher

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