Top 10 Baby Products that Saved my Sanity
I’m rapidly approaching my due date with baby #2, and I thought I would share a few of things I have learned from motherhood so far…. This is the first in a series of posts about the products I really loved for my son and that helped save my sanity during the “newborn phase”. To start, I will say I didn’t LOVE this phase, I was extremely anxious and struggled a lot. I felt alienated and alone with a tiny baby that couldn’t communicate how he was feeling, and it was terrifying. I heard people say over and over again “I just LOVE the newborn stage!” and “Oh, your motherly instincts will let you know what to do…” which ultimately made me feel like a terrible person since I wasn’t loving the newborn stage. I felt completely lost when my “motherly instincts” didn’t have a clue how to handle a situation. Since then, however, I have had some wonderful conversations with wonderful moms who felt exactly the same way. It is so nice to know that we aren’t along in this crazy journey of motherhood. So, if you’re anything like me, just remember to enjoy it as much as you can, but don’t feel bad if you’re relieved when your child starts to become more independent, eating solid foods and sleeping through the night (if you’re lucky enough to have a child that does)!
Disclaimer: As usual, I am not being compensated or endorsed by any of these companies/products so just keep that in mind – these are my own opinions about products that I either received as gifts from family/friends at my baby shower or I purchased entirely on my own.
Top 10 Baby Products that I Loved….
- Undercover Mama Nursing Tanks – these were a gift from my sister-in-law who had her baby 4 months before me. And they were an absolute lifesaver! I was pretty busty to begin with and then add several sizes while nursing, so I didn’t feel comfortable in nursing tanks or bras that didn’t offer good support. With these Undercover Mama nursing tanks, they hook right on to your nursing bras (I preferred underwire nursing bras) and allow you to easily feed baby in public or private without showing your entire stomach off. I really loved them and will be getting more for baby #2. If you are interested in them or want to know more about how they work, you can check them out here.
- Feed Baby App – I can honestly say that I’ve never paid for a mobile app before I had my son. However, after I tried the free version of this app, I decided that I wanted to upgrade to the paid version (it was like 1.99 or 2.99 for forever). It is a great app for nursing or bottle feeding or feeding solids, keeping track of baths or diaper changes…pretty much anything and everything baby related. It allowed me to tap a button when I started nursing with one breast and then stop and do the same for the other side. It was a lifesaver for me…I was so sleep deprived that keeping track of the last feeding, diaper change or which side I fed on last, was impossible and this was a super easy way for me to keep track of these things. I could also keep track of pumping and if I fed a bottle instead of nursing. Basically it was the only thing keeping me organized in the new baby delirium that I was living in.
- Music/White Noise Machine – This really helped cover up the background noise when LB (Little Bear) transitioned into his crib. Our house is old, creaky, and loud…so in order for LB to nap more than 15 minutes without us (or our dogs) waking him up we kept some background music or white noise going. It was definitely a sanity saver so we weren’t tip-toeing around and scared of waking him every second.
- Little Remedies Gas Drops – This is something that I was VERY reluctant to try. Let’s face it, I didn’t like the idea of medicating my baby from day one…but when I discovered he would have bloody diapers when I ate too much dairy or soy (MSPI mamas know what I’m talking about) and my doctor said he would likely outgrow it (he did!), I resorted to trying anything that would make his tummy hurt less and ease the gas. We ended up doing gas drops on a regular basis and they were a life-saver. He wouldn’t have slept even close to 4 hours straight before we discovered gas drops, and after he was so much happier and more comfortable. Even though it was a struggle for me to adjust my diet to limited milk and soy protein (as I’m already allergic to meat), I did the best I could and we all lived through it! Eventually LB grew out of it and now he loves milk, ice cream and all things dairy!
- Video Baby Monitor – This is a necessity! Any brand will do…for us, there is only one bedroom on our main floor and it’s the master, and then two small bedrooms but no bathroom on the second floor. While LB slept in our bedroom for almost 6 months (mostly for ease of nightly feedings), when he finally transitioned to his crib, having a video monitor was the best thing ever! I didn’t love the idea of having our 6 month-old baby sleeping on a different floor than us so I needed a video monitor to make me feel better at nights, and we could check on him anytime without having to risk walking up squeaky, creaky stairs and waking him up.
- Ergo 360 Baby Carrier – I loved being about to carry him around and still have my arms and hands free to do other things. While we didn’t use it every day (I do think I’ll get even more use out of it with baby #2), it was so handy to have, and even my husband used it! That’s the true test of a useful baby product, right? Although any baby carrier would probably work, I liked the idea that this one can be used four different ways and does not cause hip dysplasia.
- Loves 2 Dream Swaddle Up – We had a rough transition from the Rock N’Play to the crib (I’ll talk more about this in my next post on things I’ll do different this time) and nobody got a decent nights sleep in our house until we discovered this sleep sack. It kept LB feeling secure and swaddled, and calmed his startle reflex just enough to keep him sleeping for several hours at a time. I did so much research on these and found several options, one called Merlin’s Magic Sleep Suit that a bunch of people liked, but for me, I liked that this one allowed the arms to zip off so it could be used after the baby learned to roll over, and that I could buy it at a store near me. Because they were a little pricey, I wanted to actually see it before spending the money. If you are interesting in seeing this product (or buying one) here is a link. I actually bought mine at Buy Buy Baby, but I think I even saw them at Target the other day so they are becoming more accessible.
- Bottle Warmer – A friend gave me one and I had heard that these were overrated, but honestly, the few times we did bottles with LB, this was so handy to have. I don’t even know what brand we have, Munchkin maybe? But it would heat up a bottle in 30-60 seconds and when there’s a screaming baby, every second counts!
- Temporal Thermometer – Call me paranoid, but when babies are little, I feel like you are constantly checking their temperature. It is so hard to tell if they feel too warm or if their fussiness is related to something more than just hunger, wet diaper, or gas. Having a temporal thermometer made taking LB’s temperature much easier. The one time I misplaced it and had to use an under-the-arm thermometer, it was nearly impossible to keep him still long enough to get a decent reading. Let’s just say, there’s a reason why people are getting these and I am on board with it.
- Babiators – Okay, this one is meant to be light-hearted. My MIL found these super cute baby aviator style sunglasses that we put on LB in the car to keep the sun out of his eyes and they were not only ADORABLE and stylish, but they actually serve a purpose. oh, and did I mention they are super durable and come with a lifetime guarantee against lost, broken, or stolen. It’s a win-win for everyone and I just might have to buy a pair of pink ones for the baby girl in a couple months!
I hope some of these things can help others navigate those hard and stressful first months with a newborn and if you have any other amazing products to share, I would LOVE to hear about them. I realize that every child is SO different and I’m sure that baby #2 will be a new journey filled with things we didn’t think of the first time and hopefully a few things that are easier the second time around. I hope you enjoy and have a great day!