A few months back I tweeted something along the lines of "do I really need an $800 stroller?!?" and I was pretty surprised when most of those who responded said they really loved their expensive strollers. I read a TON of reviews of the big guns (Bugaboo and Stokke, I'm looking at you), but really didn't want to make quite that kind of investment in a stroller. We settled on the slightly more reasonable choice of the Bumbleride Indie Stroller which we love and was recommended by Heather Drive. Our carseat fits into it for use that way as well.
Although we think we'll get a lot of use out of this stroller living where we do, almost everyone recommended getting a second lighter-weight and more compact stroller for traveling. The recommendations on this type of stroller are pretty all over the place, so I depended mostly on Amazon reviews, of which there are A LOT. We settled on the UPPAbaby G-Lite Stroller.
Other Places to Stick Your Kid
According to a lot of mommas, some babies hate these and some love them. According to my parents, I was a huge fan of my Johnnie Jump-up back in the day, so we went with a Graco Jump N Jive Doorway Jumper. It came with a mat that plays music when you jump on it... how could that not be fun?
In the interest of not crapping up our house with yet ANOTHER baby seat type object, I almost didn't register for a bouncing/vibrating seat. But then I went to a new mom get-together with some new mommas in my yoga class and they said I was crazy. We went with the Fisher-Price Rainforest Bouncer. This is probably the brightest-colored, loudest, most obnoxious baby item in our home right now. Which probably means my kid will love it the most.
I looked at a million high chairs and ultimately chose one that wasn't terribly expensive and had good Amazon reviews. This one converts four different ways from an infant seat, a toddler chair, booster, and later a youth seat. Graco Blossom Highchair:
Keeping Your Kiddo Clean
I dare you to read this post by That Wife Jenna and not want to get a Puj Tub. Obviously I've yet to try it out, but after seeing how cool it is in person I'm betting that I'm going to share her enthusiasm.
Looking for a good way to suck some snot out of your baby's nose? Aren't we all? How about with your mouth? After reading numerous positive reviews of the Nosefrida Snotsucker, and most notably this hilarious one by I Love You More Than Carrots, I decided we couldn't live without one of our own. My stepmother thought I was nuts when I put it on my registry. (But then she bought it- ha!) Dare I say I'm looking forward to trying it out? You might be thinking this is unnecessary since you can just steal the little bulb-type suckers from the hospital... but hello... those are supposed to be DISPOSABLE. There is no way to get the boogers back out of them. And that is way grosser than sucking out snot with a tube.
Diapers and Changing Them
Sarah at Stinkerpants raved about the BabySmart Cooshee Changer and it seems like a no-brainer to me. Change a dirty diaper over something cloth-covered that you have to wash if it gets dirty, or change a dirty diaper over a soft wipe-able surface? Sign me up for the latter.
bumGenius One-Size Cloth Diaper 4.0 Ahh, the great diaper debate. It was definitely reading a million reviews from happy cloth diapering mommas that led me down this path. I'll be blogging a lot more about our adventures in cloth diapering once we are in the trenches, but let me refer you to the wonderful researcher Julia at Life in Transition for the time being. After checking out all of the options, we've decided to try out pocket diapers first. The cloth diapering decision has been met with
As for dirty diaper duty, we're going to try both the Planet Wise Hanging Diaper Wet/Dry Bag on a hook in the nursery and Kissa's Antibacterial Pail Liner with a closed-lid trash can to see which system works better for us. We also registered for a couple of the smaller Planet Wise bags for traveling.
Everyone seems to go with the Medela versions, but after reading this post at My Life In Transition, I decided to check out the Enjoye Pump by Hygeia. I'll be writing a lot more about it after I get to try it out... as a working momma I'm hoping to become BFF with this thing.
Bebe Au Lait Nursing Cover- This was recommended by a few different people as a cover-up while nursing. I'm going to try using it while pumping as well, because the room designated for me at work doesn't have a lock on the door, and I don't need to be giving any free shows. Note to boy-mommas: don't forget you can get a pink flowery one of these if you want! It's for you, not the bambino.
I plan to live in yoga pants, a robe, and one of these tanks for awhile after Baby O' arrives. Thank you Target for making something so inexpensive that everyone (here's a rave by Kate at Bless This Nest) seems to love more than the expensive ones.
Other Fun Stuff
Rockabye Baby CDs. My brother and his wife had a few of these and they were also recommended by Kimberly Michelle. They are basically lullaby covers of popular songs, and we registered for the Beatles, Coldplay, U2 and Dave Matthews Band versions. These are awesome and I've actually been listening to the Coldplay one in my car. They were among the first items to disappear from our registry.
Another item I've been using already and am in love with is the iHome Color-Changing Speaker. I read a review of it on Young House Love, and it's just as cool as they say it is. You can turn on just the lights (solid or changing colors), just the music, or both. You can also download a white noise track to your iPod and use it as a white noise machine. Love. Baby O' will be using his with his Mom's old pink iPod, which comes complete with Shakira's "My Hips Don't Lie" and lots of other gems circa 2005.
We registered for a couple of these adorable Wubbanub Infant Pacifier recommended by Sara at Stinkerpants, and a couple of more basic ones too.
this post on Making it Lovely a million years ago, and since then have seen the Boon Grass Countertop Drying Rack on Kimberly Michelle's blog and others as well. I think it's adorable.
Blush !nk made her own adorable closet dividers, which really are helpful in organizing crazy amounts of baby clothing. I found these cute ones by Sugar Booger and there are lots on etsy as well.
Making it Lovely: Skip Hop Moby Bath Spout Cover.
Uncle Goose Alphabet Wooden Blocks look so cute in the nursery and will last forever, and you can't go wrong with Melissa and Doug... we got the Geometric Stacker.
Universally recommended by everyone and their mom:
*Pack 'n Play aka "play yard" (but like Kleenex and Bandaids, nobody calls it that). We went with the one that has a changing area and a bassinet built in. It will probably live downstairs and hopefully serve as a second changing station.
*Bumbo Baby Seat.We also registered for the attachable play tray.
*Boppy. We got an extra cover too (I read somewhere that babies are messy?).
* Graco Snugride Infant Car Seat. Seems to be the overwhelming favorite in the infant car seat category. We got an extra base for hub's car. Also, it fits into our Bumbleride stroller really easily.
* Miracle Blanket My friend Emily (*who should have a blog but doesn't, hinthint*) raved about these blankets, and even demonstrated their magical powers to us on her daughter, Amelia. We registered for two and hope that Baby O' loves them as much as Amelia does. We also got a set of the Aden & Anais swaddle blankets which get rave reviews too.
*Skip Hop Versa Diaper Bag. No sense thinking hubs is going to carry this so I just got the one I liked best.
*Baby Bjorn Carrier and Moby Wrap. Everyone has a different favorite carrier, but these were both well-liked and highly recommended. I hear the Moby is a bit complicated but super comfy and the Bjorn is a bit more dad-friendly.
*Vulli Sophie the Giraffe Teether Giraffes are so hot right now. And Sophie is the hottest.
*Flip UltraHD Video Camera Key for out-of-state Grandparents.
Yes, this is A LOT of stuff. We were fortunate to have three baby showers and had to keep adding stuff to the registry... which I am NOT complaining about; this is a fabulous problem to have! So this is certainly not a list of MUST HAVE and CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT items. But it's a list of a lot of things that a lot of people said would make our lives easier. Easier life? Sounds good to me.
A few other tips:
1. Don't register for any clothes. I couldn't resist adding a few cute things to our registry, which I'm thrilled to have, but EVERYONE will buy you clothes regardless of whether you register for them. Same goes for blankets, shoes, socks, and stuffed animals.
2. We registered at Amazon, Babies 'R' Us and Jillian's Drawers (for cloth diaper supplies). People far and away preferred Babies 'R' Us. Some of my mom's friends even asked why we were registering at Amazon, wondering "do they really want that many books?" Easiest for you does not equal easiest to your shower guests! (Is it obnoxious to register at more than one place? Maybe, but as a gift-giver I think more options are better than fewer.)
3. Amazon has a one-time use 10% discount for registry completion on *some* of their items. You get the option to use it starting 30 days before your due date... if you want to use it earlier you may want to adjust the date you enter accordingly (I tried to change it later but didn't get the coupon until 30 days before the date I'd originally entered).
4. No one wants to buy you diapers.
5. No one wants to buy you breastfeeding stuff except your Mom. (Thanks, Mom!)
And finally, here are the posts that I found most helpful in navigating the baby registry craziness:
JustBee: Ultimate Baby Registry
My Life In Transition: Baby Gear, the First Year / Pump Talk / Cloth Diapering Update
Stinkerpants: My Favorite Things
That Wife: The PUJ Tub
I Love You More Than Carrots: Just When I Thought Being A Mom Couldn't Get Anymore Gross
Bless This Nest: Stuff I Love
This Casita: The First Six Weeks
OMG I'm a Mom: Smart Mommy/Stupid Mommy Purchases
Other Pieces of Me: Five Things
(Disclosure: All of the product links on this page are Amazon Associate links.)