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Any experienced moms have advice on baby gear? - Page 2

post #21 of 39
Just a side note emmalala: I had the same problem with "onsies" with one of mine. I found "snap extenders" these worked great! This baby is not long waisted but I bought some awesome organic "onsies" and because they're more expensive I'm using the snap extenders again so I can use the shirts longer.

post #22 of 39
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much for all of your awesome advice!! Do any of you have favorite websites for AP products that are hard to find in local stores?

post #23 of 39
This site lists a lot of places you can by AP products on line.

post #24 of 39
What a fun thread this has been to read! I wanted to mention something that I learned regarding the carseat mirrors. I think you're talking about the kind that suction to your back window so you can see a rear facing child via by pointing your rear view mirror toward it. Did that make any sense Anyway, I had one and loved it...until I went and had our carseat professionally inspected at the fire dept. The inspector (they're all certified) told me not to use it because they are not all that adhesive and not permanently mounted. So, if you're in an accident, it's a projectile in your car. And since it's positioned to be facing your child, it's a projectile right into your child's head. Once he said that, I realized how they really aren't that secure suction-cupped to the window and immediately took mine down. I missed it sooooo much, I also loved being able to see my baby!

Just thought I'd pass this along.
post #25 of 39
That's great to know that naturalJoy! Actually, I couldn't use a suction cup one because I drive an SUV (I know, I know : ), so i used the kind that attaches to the backseat headrest with velrco. It came with a large safety pin which i assumed was to secure it so that it would not become a projectile in a crash, but I think these types have unbreakable mirrors, as opposed to the suction cup ones, although I may be wrong about that.
post #26 of 39

trust your own instincts

I got tons of advice about what I needed and what I didn't need. What I've found is that I pretty much knew what kind of mama I wanted to be, and I just sought out things to help me achieve that (and didn't get all the extraneous crap).

Good luck!

post #27 of 39
I loved the infant gowns. I didnt use the onsies until ds was about a month old and his umbilical stump fell off. I used cotton clothes that were like sweat material. I always dressed him the way I would dress if I was lounging around the house and wanted to be comfortable. I really like fleece outfits for winter. In the summer it gets very hot in kansas and he wore diapers and cotton shorts and thats it.
I bathed him in a giant bowl with a towel in the bottom until he was about 3 months and then we switched to the sink. I found a sink mat in the dish department of walmart that is a squishy foam material and has six little suction cups on the bottom. Ds still uses it at 2years. He is almost too big for the sink now though. I still use a bath hat. Its like a sponge sun visor, it keeps water from running into baby's eyes and very inexpensive.
I used the swing when he slept during the day and I wanted to take a shower. If the oppertunity to shower during one of his naps diddnt arise... I waited until dh could hold him. I didnt work for the first year so I didnt use the breast pump much but I do have a gerber electric pump and I was able to get about 4 ounces after ds ate from one side but I made enough milk for 4 kids!!! I had a sling but never got the hang of it. I bought a jogging stroller and used that like crazy. We would take walks to the library (about a mile and a half away) 3 or 4 times a week and it is so much smoother than a stroller with the hard little wheels. The jogger has big rubber tires that absorb a lot of the shock.
Ds loves his outside swing. We have it hanging from a giant walnut tree in the back yard and we spend a lot of time swinging in the sping and summer.
I did buy a boppy nursing pillow for this baby. My arms got tired holding my first ds while nursing and I had a c-section so having him lay on my incision was painful at first. I am planning a natural birth this time so I wont have to worry about the incision but I want to relax fully while nursing instead of getting tired.
I found that less is best. The less stuff I have to look at cluttered around the house is best especially if it never got used!
good luck
post #28 of 39

*car seat that has the longest measurement between back of seat and buckle, which should be soft and flexible; belt covers or something for baby to lean head on when s/he goes to sleep

*several warm, soft receiving blankets (I bought a few nice cotton ones, made a few from polar fleece, which you don't have to hem)

*comfortable diaper covers, I like polar babies a lot: http://www.diapercovers.com/cgi-bin/diaper/diapercovers I also like their fleece liners, though they aren't essential

*bibs, hats, booties! drool and drafty house make these necessary

*union suits (pants are binding, shirts ride up, onesies are worthless); these are my favorites in the whole world, the legs don't ride up, and the fabric is nice and stretchy: http://instylekids.com/babownlonuni.html

*thermometer -- I just got a digital one from One Step Ahead that only takes a few seconds, really nice

*diaper rash cream: my favorite is Country Comfort, it works wonderfully, no zinc oxide (but be forewarned, it smells a little odd): http://www.weebees.com/web_page/country_comfort.html

*sling -- neither the OTSBH or maya wrap worked for me, finally I just took a square piece of stretchy cloth, wrapped it around me and tied a knot with opposing corners -- it works pretty well
post #29 of 39
What about a rocking chair? Necessary or extraneous? We're thinknig of getting a 2nd one for downstairs....
post #30 of 39
I have a glider that my parents bought that I wouldn't have wanted to be w/out. I loved rocking and nursing, rocking and nursing. I kept it in the family room, central to the house, but would have loved to have had another in the nursery.

Mine wasn't tall enough in the back for me to rest my head and didn't have padded armrests. These are things that I would definitely get if I had it to do over. Sam bumped his head so many times on those hard armrests and I wanted to cry when it happened. Next baby, I'll make something that'll cover them.

If I were to buy a 2nd rocker, I'd get a nicely padded rocking recliner. My parents have one and I loved feeding Sam in it while visiting. Sometimes, we'd both just doze off in it. Next baby, I think I'll get one for downstairs!

As you can tell, I like to spend lots of time just rocking and nursing, rocking and nursing. Whenever I get pg again, I'll have a toddler running around, so I probably won't have so much luxury time...
post #31 of 39
I would buy for yourself first, IMHO baby has fewer needs & will get gifts.
My must haves~
*lazy boy rocker with vibrator back massage unit and padded arms, skip the glider~ the lazy boy fits mom and 2 kids
*nursing slant footstool
*fleece dark color thick long bathrobe with deep pockets to store your flannel nursing pads in and soak up tea spills
*used book store romance novels, the cheap funny thin ones to read while you are nursing, stock up a nursing station
* Caller ID
* a couple really good flashlights to keep by your bed (especially good for hunting around for a diaper on the floor when you don't want to wake Daddy or sleeping older child)
* a neat thermos mug and some nursing or comfort teas/juices for the mid of night sessions, also a couple sports bottles
* a leopard print nursing bra to make you feel sexy regardless of poop and spit up on your shirt
* a pile of comfy cotton nursing nightgowns and a couple cute sweats outfits for yourself with elastic waist (pockets also) to wear while your other clothes are sitting
* a huge pile of cheap white washcloths (Kmart), you can cry into them, use them as baby wipes, spit rags, they fit in a diaper bag better then a cloth diaper folded, fold them into your bra or underwear in emergency as soakers, throw them at SO to get his attention while he is sleeping and you are not. You can bleach them as needed and not worry about bleach in baby's cloth diapers.
* lastly a humidfier or small fan, they make great white noise to help you & baby sleep longer

mom of 4 I loved reading the posts here
post #32 of 39

On the other hand....

On the other hand, I have a baby who hates to be rocked. Personally, I'd wait and see if the baby digs it and *then* get an extra one if you need it (but I also have a tight budget and a tiny house).

post #33 of 39
Just a couple of comments...

We didn't co-sleep...we used a crib, but the pack 'n play play yard was great when I wanted to work outside in the garden and it was baby nap time. I put the sun-shade up and she slept outside in the fresh air. Also when we traveled to visit family since we don't co-sleep it was helpful to have a bed for DD.

Never used a diaper changing table...just got a bunch of waterproof pads and put those down in the crib or on our bed covered with a cloth diaper when we changed DD.

Never used a baby tub...seemed like a waste of money when I could clean out my sink and put a big fluffy towel down and then fill the sink with lukewarm water. When she got bigger and a bit more fidgety, I just crawled in the big tub with her.

Didn't like the front carrier because I always felt like the baby was getting too warm in it. Will try the sling this go around.

I found our rocking chair uncomfortable for nursing, but we recently purchased a chair from IKEA (can't remember style name of chair but you'll know it when you sit in it...MMM!) that has a bit of a bounce to it if I need to rock the baby, and a foot rest as well.

You don't need a fancy-schmancy diaper bag but any bag will do. I found backpacks were helpful after a while. Just be sure it is pre-packed with the stuff you need so all you have to do is grab the bag and lock the door behind you when you are inclined. I had a a girlfriend that took HOURS (well...maybe not HOURS ) to get out of the house because she repacked her diaper bag just before we were ready to leave EVERY TIME...UGH! If you are using wipes (we didn't because DD developed a rash early on from them...even the hypoallergenic ones) have them in a small baggy, toss in a few diapers (cloth or disposable depending on preference) and don't forget a ziploc bag to put the dirties in!! Some rattles, a book or two and a changing pad (see above...waterproof pad and cloth diaper!) and you are ready to go. I found it easiest to repack the bag when I returned rather than waiting until I was ready to go...much quicker. You have to empty the dirty diapers anyway so might as well pack the stuff all up ahead of time.

We had a jogging stroller but I rarely used it because I gave up jogging (had knee surgery 6 months after I had DD). I agree, however, that it is great for city use, particularly if you are using it on uneven sidewalks. It is also great for "country/off road" use because the tires are pretty sturdy.

If you are using cloth diapers...either get a delivery system or purchase diapers/wraps/pail/etc. If you are using disposables, 'diaper genies' help keep odor down. We used an excellent delivery service until we moved to a place that didn't have a local service. Used disposables (mostly Tushies and Huggies) for last year of diaper use (between 2 1/2-3 1/2 yo).

Since I was a working mom, I needed a breastpump. I had a friend who could hand express like a champ but I never got the hang of it. I got a small electric/battery pump from Medela and it worked marvelously.

Last bit of advice...I'm not one for shopping at Baby Gap (TOO EXPENSIVE AND TOO TRENDY) but I got a pair of socks from them for a gift and they NEVER fell off of my DD's feet. All other socks did!!!! I vowed at that point that my children would never wear anything else but Baby Gap socks!!!! They have NEVER let me down!

We were d-mn poor when we had DD and we made it with second hand stuff borrowed from friends and also purchased from "Once Upon a Child"...even with a decent income now, we expect to do the same for baby #2! Keep it simple...babies don't care...they just want you to hold and love them!

post #34 of 39

baby gear

Isn't baby stuff overwealming?

I haven't read the other posts, but here's what I use while babysitting and what I"m planning on getting:

- Baby has to be safe in the car. I can't remember which infant seat I have but my toddler/older child carseat absolutely rocks - the Alpha Omega car seat. It's around $140, but worth it - it seats up to 80 lbs and is very nice; looks spiffy in my car. It puts the toddler up high enough to see out the window, which they like. It also has side head rests (when they fall asleap and tilt) and a pillow. The butt end of it is also soft! Lots' of padding there, unlike some others. I wouldn't use it for a newborn, but from 9 months on (facing backwards) it's great. For all carseats, go for a five-point harness system, it's the strongest and safest for baby.

- Baby likes to be close to mama - get a good sling. Try finding a 2nd hand store that re-sells slings and try them on with the baby to see what you like. I thought I'd hate padding, but I actually kinda liked it. There are a billion posts here on slings and their accompanying pros & cons.

- Baby's got to poop somewhere. I'd suggest a cloth diaper package from Katie's Kisses. I found her prices reasonable and I think she sells good stuff! I also supplemented that basic package with various other wraps and all-in-ones and dipes as the mood struck me. LaLa also has a nice hemp diaper!

- Baby's got to wear clothing. Find a good re-sale children's clothing store. They grow so fast, you could spend a fortune on clothing alone. Don't buy any more than two or three newborn outfits - other people will buy you or give you alot more than you imagine. Or borrow.

Baby's got to sleep somewhere. Most babies here sleep in a "family bed". Some use bassinetts. I wouldn't waste money on a bassinette that will be used for a couple of months at the most. If you buy a crib, make sure it's up to standards; all new cribs will be. I personally am planning on buying an organic mattress. I can't co-sleep because I have a bad back and sleep with a half dozen pillows - a definate no-no while sharing sleep in a family bed.

Baby also has to eat. If you are planning on nursing (and I'm assuming you are, this being Mothering), get nursing supplies - boppy, a few shirts, nursing pads etc. A good blender or food processor for mixing homemade baby food.

Baby likes to play and have "tummy time" occassionally so he doesn't look like Charlie Brown like my nephew did (he always laid on his back, and his head flattened out!). Have a few receiving blankets to lay on the ground. Also, get a good bouncy seat with safety straps. Some moms here may advise against that, but feed him baby food from it later on, getting more use out of it if baby likes it.

Some kids also like swings. As long as it isn't used as a babysitter, it can keep baby near you while you try to eat and do laundry while she's sleeping!

I'd also get a nice colapsable Combi stroller for around $90 from Babies R Us for those times when the sling won't do. Bring the sling anyway in the basket below cause half the time you'll be carrying baby and pushing an empty stroller anyway. Carry groceries in it.

Ask for books or gift certificates to a bookstore. You can never have too many books. Also, get a library card - and you'll always have more than enough to read.

Another thing I love is a tape called Heartbeat Lullabies. They are fantastic and *I* love it! So did all the babies at my preshool. It is various lullabies set to the beating of a human heart. Very relaxing! (for parents AND babe).

Good luck!
post #35 of 39
A few of you have mentioned some kind of white noise maker. I wanted to put a plug in for the one we just bought

Target has this great one made by Homedics, sold where the foot bubble baths and curling irons are. It's small, collapsable and runs by AC adaptor (plug-in) or battery. It has five great nature sounds and womb heartbeat. We've started using it in my toddler's room to drown out the phone and barking hounds and it's wonderful! We tried a fan, but being winter and all, it made his room too chilly. Oh, it was only $17.88. I searched on-line and the cheapest I could find that worked off of AC adaptor (the battery only ones eat batteries I've read) was like $80. So, I really felt like this was a deal!

So, if you've got barking dogs, a loud neighborhood, or older kids that might wake baby while s/he naps, this might be a great investment!
post #36 of 39
Here is my list:

*An infant carseat with leave in base. Our dd #1 was very small, 5#6oz when she left the hospital. The bottom limit in the car seat was 5# and she just flopped around all over the place. The reason I say leave in base is there may be sometimes when it is cold or slippery out or your baby is sleeping and it would just make more sense to leave baby bundeled in the car seat. So that you don't have to struggel with properly installing the car seat evrytime (and it is a struggle) a leave in base insures that it will stay properly installed.
* If you are going to buy a breastpump get the Avent Isis. It is the only pump for under $250 that is worth the cardboard it is packaged in.
*My kids loved the swing, but we boiught a no frills $12 one second hand. If they won't be taking up residency in it there is no reason to spend a fortune.
*ton of onsies.Gerber makes the best ones. Carters suck.
*Don't buy outfits that snap in the back. These are so hard for first time moms. Don't buy in the newborn size. They are there for like a week. maybe one cute sleeper for going out in. Even the afore mentioned tiny babe grew out of the newborn size by 2 weeks.
*Good books: The Baby Book by Dr. Sears, Mothering and Fatering and The family bed (2 seperate books) by Tine Thevenin,
The womanly Art of Breastfeeding, LLLI, vaccines an issue of our times by mothering mag and some good fiction to read while you are glued to the couch.
* A washer and dryer. We actually got a set and an ofer for another. So ask if you need one. You never know.
*A white sweater if you have a girl. It is a real outfit stretcher.
* A good blanket. larger than your average baby balnket. And about 12 recieving blankets. You can use these for anything. Swaddeling, coushining baby's head in carseat, layering blankets for out door events, wiping up stuff, emergancy diapers, burp cloths,
* a carrier of some sort. i really like a sling but have never been able to use it with a new born. Usually around a month, but never in the cradel position. Usually upright against my chest. If you don't like slings I hear baby bjorns are good and Kelty makes a sweet one.
*a cordless phone
*a big honking water cup. I stole mne from the hospital. We had a $20,000 out of pocket bill. It was the least they could do.
*extra bedding. Doing laundry, especially a comforter sucks right after you have a baby.
*food in the fridge.
post #37 of 39

baby gear--cool stuff

We found a few really great things:

Babytrekker (advertised in Mothering): extremely comfortable for adult and baby and can be used up to 40 lbs. My 21 month still likes to go in it sometimes, www.babytrekker.com

Cozey Rosie: a fleece insert for strollers and baby joggers (what I use it for) so that you can keep your little one warm while you get a bit of exercise. Especially nice for toddlers who get fussy when asked to wear lots of layers. www.sewbeautiful.com

I saw a few others mention Bravado bras--definitely great for both pregnancy and bfeeding. Love the Avent Isis pump (although my dog chewed it up last month .

A glider is a must. My DH had to go out the day after the birth to buy this, and I still use it with my 21 month-old.
post #38 of 39
I think I got through all the replies and I did not see breast pads mentioned. I bought a small supply of all-cotton and all-wool nursing pads and loved them, especially the wool ones which were soft, absorbent and I could wash them by hand in the sink with a little olive oil soap. The wool ones were quite large as well which was supposed to keep my breasts warm adn help prevent "back-up." I can't see why anyone would want to put a piece of paper in their bra (disposables!) but I did see the need for a pad for leakage.
post #39 of 39
you've got some great replies here! My biggest needs have always been....a sling, a few nursing tops (both can be made cheaply from patterns from Elizabeth Lee- I don't sew so a friend made my tops as a baby gift I was able to make the sling myself for about $12) I used a stroller alot for babe #1 as he was easily over stimulated by being carried, didn't use it at all with #2 until #3 came along before she was ready to walk everywhere!
Somebody gave me a playpen before the first. I found it useful for a couple of years at christmas time, to put the tree in so that my adventurous son didn't climb it! Mostly it held laundry!
One thing about carseats...be sure to try getting it into and out of your car a few times when you first get it some carseats seem to fit better than others!
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