Indispensable Baby Items - Mothering Forums

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Old 08-30-2010, 01:04 PM - Thread Starter
 
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DP and I are getting ready to register for our shower! It's SO exciting to be at this milestone! Our moms scheduled the shower in November (a little early) so we can beat the winter snow storms here in the Northeast. And that means it's time to register (so our moms can stop bugging us about needing to get those invitations out)!

We're not having a huge shower. It will be fairly small, compared to many that I've been to, and I want to make sure that we include only the most important things on the registry. So, my question is...

Are there one or two baby items that have proved to be indispensable for your and your family?

Thanks so much to any feedback you can offer! Hopefully this thread will help us newbies be better prepared!

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Old 08-30-2010, 01:25 PM
 
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Hmm, just one or two? There were so many things that made life infinitely easier.

I'm big on breastfeeding, so a pair of Lily Padz reusable nursing pads were my constant companion for the first month or so. Some people don't like them, but I preferred them to absorbent pads and they REALLY stopped leaks.

I had a couple of Glamourmom tops for easy nursing access at night and when I didn't want to get dressed all day. SOoo easy to nurse in, and very comfy.

My Medela InStyle breast pump was irreplaceable. It's like the best pump out there and it was comfortable and easy to use.

I thought a regular pillow was as good as a Boppy, but I was wrong! I love my Boppy and used it everyday until my son was weaned.

Sleep sacks were great for the cold weather. Never had to worry about DS kicking off his blankets.

I took my sling everywhere! I got a ring sling, and honestly, I have no idea why we bought a stroller. We never used it...DS was always in his sling.

We had lots of electronic stuff: swing, vibrating chair, musical mobile....but in the end DS just wanted to be held and nursed a lot. The things I listed above helped save my sanity in the first months.

Sarah~ Crunchy, Wiccan, AP, Gemini mama who loves her amazing 3 year old little man and energetic DH. Learning to cope with the idea of a 2nd son.
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Old 08-30-2010, 01:40 PM
 
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Moby wrap, Moby wrap, Moby wrap!!

I (along with lots of my friends) liked the Moby more than a ring sling or pouch sling for the itsybitsy newborn phase. I found my son was more secure in it than in another sling, since I could tie it according to him - and we actually still use it now that he's two! They're super, super soft - ours is the "natural" color, so it matches everything. It's my one indispensable baby item (other than my breasts - well, I guess those are two items, and they weren't on our registry ).

ETA: Oooh, yes, and reusable nursing pads are a great suggestion. The plastic disposable ones can actually cause blockage sometimes, and aren't very environmentally friendly. The Lily Pads unfortunately never worked for me. In case you're not familiar: they're a kind of silicone flower that you push down onto your nipple, and the pressure is supposed to stop a letdown. For me, though, there was no stopping my letdowns! As a result, they were really uncomfortable, and I'd feel the pressure build behind them, but I make A LOT of milk for my babies! These were the only ones that worked for me: http://www.cottonbabies.com/product_...roducts_id=229. They aren't very subtle (you can definitely see a circle when I'm wearing them through a t-shirt if my bra is unpadded), but man, do they work. I'd recommend having a couple pairs around of very absorbent cloth (wool or hemp blend) for the beginning when you'll make lots of milk and just be at home nursing a baby anyway (so the way they look doesn't matter). A wool or hemp blend (rather than just cotton) is nice because it'll wick the moisture away from you, and then I'd try Lily Padz later when your supply evens out a bit - but that's just my opinion! If you can register for both kinds and have both around, then it'll be whatever works best for you.

Kelley, lucky partner to my Canuck and momma to Peter Gwydion (9/08) whistling.gif, Eliot Theoden (2/11) sleepytime.gif, and Harper Ophelia (m/c 6/12) rainbow1284.gif . We breastfeed exclusively, cosleep peacefully, vax selectively, homeschool joyously, and love each other unconditionally! luxlove.gif 
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Old 08-30-2010, 01:52 PM
 
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i 2nd the moby wrap....dd LOVED to be in it the first 4 months of her life, which also helps because then you have 2 free hands. cloth diapers if you plan to cloth diaper would be good too. prefolds are great for cleaning up spit up too.

Lisa, wife to Jacob, mom to DS Ryan (4), DD Clover (2.5) and DD Mae (born 2/3/2011)
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Old 08-30-2010, 01:54 PM
 
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Moby Wrap for the earliest weeks, then mei tai, then Beco.

My brest friend nursing pillow

Miracle Blanket

Those are the things I couldn't live without!

Laura, married to Daniel 12/16/2000
Claire b. 6/29/06 and Andrew b. 4/20/08 and #3 due 2/8/11!!
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Old 08-30-2010, 01:55 PM
 
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I third or fourth the moby wrap, I lost track.

Also, the travel swing.. It was the only places (besides me) that she was happy being, and I needed to shower occasionally.

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Old 08-30-2010, 02:19 PM
 
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Add me to the Moby wrap bandwagon... With twins, it was indispensable in the first few weeks home.

Also muslin swaddle blankets ( I love Aden&Anais).
My Medela Breast pump ( I loved it more than the hospital pump I rented).
and a baby swing. I had one twin that would only nap in the swing because of her colic and it was nice to have a safe place to put a baby down when I needed to.

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Old 08-30-2010, 02:51 PM
 
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We liked the Boppy in the beginning when i was getting the hang of breastfeeding, but then i liked side nusing better (like at night time) so we didn't tend to use it as much.

I LOVED my "sleepy wrap" another brand that is popular is "moby" (same basic thing). As my baby got older i preferred the "ergo"

me, dh and 2 boys = our family (oh and a cat...who is also a male...lol)
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Old 08-30-2010, 03:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Wow, this is such great feedback! Thank you all so much, and please keep the suggestions coming!

stork-girl.gif She's here! She's here! She's here!
Baby Girl T - January 30, 2011
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Old 08-30-2010, 03:57 PM
 
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Breast pump (Medela PIS worked great for me)
Nursing bra--I liked Bravado
Bulb syringe
soft bristle brush
GOOD diaper cream, I liked Budreaux's or Triple Paste
prefolds! Esp DSQ--great diapers, spit up catchers, and all around mess cleaner uppers.
receiving or swaddling blankets
ring sling

Cami, wife to a guy and mom to some kids. Expecting someone new in Februrary!â¢â¢â¢â¢5â¢â¢â¢â¢10â¢â¢â¢â¢15â¢â¢â¢â¢20â¢â¢â¢25â¢â¢â¢â¢30â¢â¢â¢â¢35â¢â¢â¢â¢40
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Old 08-30-2010, 04:26 PM
 
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Baby nail clippers! (and a basic baby grooming kit: brush, thermometer, bulb syringe)

My girls have some SHARP nails that grow insanely fast... I still don't feel comfortable clipping them with adult sized clippers.

read.gifLibrarian, Wife and Mostly Crunchy Domestic Engineer. Mama to two little "birds"- ID di/di twin girls (3/09)twins.gif and a "fuzz" (2/11) babyboy.gif
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Old 08-30-2010, 04:46 PM
 
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Some type of baby carrier...I never liked the moby wrap because it was hot (for me), I'm a maya wrap-type ring slinger. Or a mei tai.

Mommy to ds (4.5), dd(3) and growing a little Valentine's Day babe!
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Old 08-30-2010, 04:59 PM
 
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a wrap.
diapers
prefolds/flats for burp cloths, piddle pads, leaky breasts, to wipe down baby in lue of bath, changing pad etc
Car seat.

That's all we needed for the first few weeks.

We returned most of what we got during showers and the like, and bought slowly as time went on. I really felt like we made the most of what we got. We bought very little gear, and have very few regrets. The other pieces of gear that we use most often are the playpen and rocking chair. We used the play pen as 'downstairs crib' when I wasn't fit to go up and down the stairs, but still needed a bed to put DS in for naps. We still use the changing table, and plan to use it as a day time bed for baby #2.

ETA: thermometer and bulb syringe! We didn't need to use one for the first 11 months of DS life, but when he was sick for the first time, I was so, so, so very greatful not to have to find an open store at 2am.

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Old 08-30-2010, 05:03 PM
 
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I second the Aden + Anais swaddle wraps. I used them for everything!!! They get softer with each wash, wear well, dry quickly (from spitup, spills, whatever).

I also really liked the Hugamonkey sling and got the most use out of it compared to my other baby carriers.

Wife to Krisztian and Mother to three little ones Rose (2006) Alina (2007) and Ben (2009). Expecting another miracle Dec 2010
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Old 08-30-2010, 05:12 PM
 
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- an Ergo carrier - our girl is 9.5 mo and we still carry her in it daily, it is great!! (and much, much more comfortable than a bjorn)

- aden & anais swaddling blankets

- swaddleMe wraps

- a bouncy seat (so you can shower!)

- breastmilk storage bags, if you plan to pump/return to work - they are expensive, so a great thing to register for!

- a good nursing bra and a variety of nursing tops

good luck!
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Old 08-30-2010, 05:40 PM
 
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- I will add a vote for a carrier. I loved my mei tai (http://www.meitaibaby.com/) and Ergo. All the material with the moby felt consticting and hot to me. Slings kill my shoulders.
- Sleep sacks and swaddling blankets
- Bath and medical supplies (we like our thermo scan thermometer) Bath tub, nail clippers, etc.
- Car seat with an extra base if you have 2 cars
- Someplace for naps. We co-sleep, but I like a bassinet for naps.
- I had a Bobby, but will likely get a My Breast Friend this time.
- Nursing Bras are essential. Not sure if you should register for them though- you will likely need to be sized after you see what size you are. I buy 1 cheap one until after I'm "up and running"
- Registering for basics (onesies, etc) in 0-3, 3-6, 6-9 might encourage guests to buy different sizes.
- Changing pad and a couple covers. We used one on top of an exsisting dresser.


I bought an expensive pump for DS#1 and have used it a total of TEN times for both kids and a combined FOUR years of breastfeeding. I am a SAHM and never really needed it. I never bought nursing tops. Again, they felt bulky to me.

Basic registry advice - register for more than the essentials. Give people choices on what to get for you. As "texmati" suggested, you can always return/exchange. If you don't give people enough choice, they may venture off the registry making it more difficult to return. I wish more people would have suggested I scour craigslist and garage sales!

~Debra, wife to the best DH, Nuno (9/98). Blessed SAHM momma to DS Diogo (3/04), DS Cruz (9/07) and DD Beatriz 2/2/11!!  
 
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Old 08-30-2010, 08:51 PM
 
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I also loved the Moby Wrap, the aden and adenis swaddles (DS still snuggles w/them) we also really loved the infant sleep gowns instead of onsies all the time, they are also really easy for the baby at night/frequent diaper changes.

I loved the Glamourmom tops and good nursing bras, but I wouldn't buy a lot before your post partum period and I don't think I'd register for them (but a gift certificate wouldn't hurt I guess) you just can't know really what will happen when your milk comes in in terms of size and where they will 'settle' at for nursing.

I think reusable nursing pad are a great idea. We also needed/used extra crib/bassinet/co sleeper sheets.

Baby wearing Mamma to DS, dealing with all his allergies....and thriving w/another little bundle due in Early Feb
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Old 08-30-2010, 09:38 PM
 
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For me the things that made the most differance-
My breast friend nursing pillow- Im one of the like 1 in a 1000 that got a back injury from a messed up epidural (the person hit my spinal cord when she removed it) and this pillow really saved me, I had a Bobby as well but it didn't give the back support this one does.
Pump in Style- with DD1 I had to return to work 6 weeks PP so this was a good purchase, also helped when DD2 was in the NICU and I needed to pump, worked better than the hospital one I borrowed in the beginning
Some kind of carrier- neither of my children were willing to be put down if I was awake so the carriers I have saved me a lot
A bouncy seat for next to the shower
The nursing stoll I borrowed from the NICU was awesome as well. I had a really tough recovery from my second (i was almost readmitted to the hospital because of sever swelling) and the stoll really helped releave the pain from the swelling in my feet and legs

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 08-30-2010, 10:52 PM
 
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I really loved my boppy. I work from home, editing, so I could have my sons sleep on the boppy, nursing on and off and work at the same time. Buy a few covers since they can get spit up on, etc and I would change them alot.

I love my ergo and my sling (for earlier).

Also, I had a travel swing for #2. I'm not a super big fan of the mechanical things to hold babies, but my stubborn son would not sleep in his crib and I didn't feel safe with my baby in the king sized bed all alone, not that he would have slept there without me.
He slept (for naps only, we cosleep) in that darn travel swing until he was about 15 months old, and the thing was literally creaking under his weight. He never slept in his crib, not once. I found a newer one at a yard sale for $5 for this baby, it's the only thing I've bought. He just needed to be more upright I guess and snuggled in that thing.

All babies are different so what might work for another mama might not work for you.
I definately recommend asking friends for hand me downs, or scouring craigslist or yard sale for some things. (like bouncer, exersaucer, etc). But I would buy your car seat new, and be careful with cribs since a ton of them were recalled this year (with the drop down sides).

Of course, cloth diapers as a must for me, and good nursing bras but that kind of stuff might be harder for others to buy for you.

Michelle, Mama to ~ F (10/06) ~ S (7/08) ~ H (2/11) ~ B (11/12)
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Old 08-31-2010, 10:17 AM
 
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A carrier (I prefer the meitai to a stretchy wrap - it'll last longer)
Diapers
Car seat (plus make sure to have your installation checked and have a Car seat tech teach you how to put it in the car. www.safekids.com in the US.)
A place to put baby while you shower/cook (we had a swing and a bouncy chair)
Nursing pillow (set up a station or two with remotes/book/snacks/water/phone for the growth spurts. DS nursed for 9 hours straight at 3 weeks old.)

Really that's all we had when DS was born - clothes enough to fill one drawer in my dresser.

*looks around living room* Where the hell did all this stuff come from! At three, they have a lot more!

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Old 08-31-2010, 03:04 PM
 
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clothes enough to fill one drawer in my dresser.
OMG this is a great idea! I've been trying to figure out where I'm going to put a few clothes for this baby, at least for the newborn stage til I figure out where it's going to sleep post-cosleeping.

ANYWAY - I agree with the suggestions above and just wanted to add a few packages of baby washcloths. I had a TON of them and used them for bathing baby, obviously, but also for reusable wipes if you cloth diaper. I still use them for post meal wipe ups of hands and faces and my kids are 3 & 5.

Amanda - wife to DH Kellyjog.gif, Mummers to Trentreading.gif born 03/03/05 Bridgetdust.gif born 08/08/07 and a IT'S A BOY! Kennedy babyboy.gifborn 02/20/11!
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Old 08-31-2010, 03:11 PM
 
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OMG this is a great idea! I've been trying to figure out where I'm going to put a few clothes for this baby, at least for the newborn stage til I figure out where it's going to sleep post-cosleeping.

ANYWAY - I agree with the suggestions above and just wanted to add a few packages of baby washcloths. I had a TON of them and used them for bathing baby, obviously, but also for reusable wipes if you cloth diaper. I still use them for post meal wipe ups of hands and faces and my kids are 3 & 5.
When DS was born we were living in an apartment the size of a shoebox. We moved shortly after, but at the time there was no room for another dresser. And little ones grow so fast, it's easier to just change out a drawer! (DS was out of newborn sized clothes before we moved when he was 3 weeks old)

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Old 08-31-2010, 04:15 PM
 
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When DS was born we were living in an apartment the size of a shoebox. We moved shortly after, but at the time there was no room for another dresser. And little ones grow so fast, it's easier to just change out a drawer! (DS was out of newborn sized clothes before we moved when he was 3 weeks old)
I just wanted to say we do this too. DS get's 2 drawers (one for bottoms, one for tops) It's working well even now at 11 months old. They simply just do not need that much clothing.

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Old 08-31-2010, 06:00 PM
 
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They simply just do not need that much clothing.
Yes I agree with that, too. I'm thinking a few onesies & sleepers or gowns for at the start then when summer rolls around probably onesies or rompers or whatever.

I also have way too many clothes and I do laundry frequently enough that we don't need tons. My kids have WAYYY too many.

Sorry to hijack the thread, OP, back to our regular scheduled programming

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Old 08-31-2010, 09:03 PM
 
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I do have to say I have a ton of baby clothes and I do go through them weekly. My babies have very bad problems with spit up and I can't stand leaving them in dirty clothing so I go through between 7-10 outfits a day when they are little. I usually do laundry every week and Ill go through the whole bookcase(we don't have dressers, we have a small bookcase for each child) full of clothes during any given week. Unfortunately you never know how your child is going to be with reflux so you can't plan ahead, luckily with DD1 I had some wonderful friends who gave me a ton of clothes right before I was due so I had more than I thought I would need and I used it all.

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 09-01-2010, 12:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, ladies! You all are the best! I've just gone through all your posts and compiled quite a nice list! Hopefully this thread will be helpful for the other new moms, too.

Regarding the baby clothes and how many are too many...well, that's a little out of my control because the Grandmas have already gone gangbusters! But hey, I'm not complaining! My brother and SIL have been running out of newborn clothes for my nephew because he pees on everything. Apparently, he peed in his own eyes while being changed yesterday.

I do have one question that I'd love to get your opinion on! I have a friend who recommended Bundle Me's for the car seat. I'm not sure I think they're necessary, even though I see them on every registry. Any thoughts on these?

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Old 09-01-2010, 04:34 AM
 
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I do have one question that I'd love to get your opinion on! I have a friend who recommended Bundle Me's for the car seat. I'm not sure I think they're necessary, even though I see them on every registry. Any thoughts on these?
How cold does it get where you are? I had something similar to that when DD was an infant because my father lived where it could get very cold and I knew we would visit him at least a couple of times. Well, I didn't feel comfortable using it because it came right up to where the baby's face was and Im a paranoid person so I was worried she might not be able to breathe. I found that she kept just as warm by having a blanket wrapped over top and not taking her out to the car until it had been warmed up. However, if its freezing where you are then I could see it being useful (if you aren't paranoid like me that is..)

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 09-01-2010, 09:00 AM
 
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Hi, I'm a car seat tech. DO NOT use a Bundle Me, or any other device that goes underneath the baby. Not only is it against proper use clause, voiding the manufacturer of any liability in case of accident, it creates excess space between the baby and the back of the seat, and when the cover compresses in a crash, the baby can be thrown from their seat.

Having spoken to the 'top dog' at Transport Canada, who is a Forensic Anthropologist, about them, I would never ever use them, and it scares me that they sell them. Babies have died from them.

If you are interested in a cover for cold weather, look for the kind that looks like a shower cap, and does not sit between the baby and the seat.

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Old 09-01-2010, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Twinklefae View Post
Hi, I'm a car seat tech. DO NOT use a Bundle Me, or any other device that goes underneath the baby. Not only is it against proper use clause, voiding the manufacturer of any liability in case of accident, it creates excess space between the baby and the back of the seat, and when the cover compresses in a crash, the baby can be thrown from their seat.

Having spoken to the 'top dog' at Transport Canada, who is a Forensic Anthropologist, about them, I would never ever use them, and it scares me that they sell them. Babies have died from them.
Well, that settles it then! Thanks for the great info!!

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Originally Posted by OkiMom View Post
How cold does it get where you are? I had something similar to that when DD was an infant because my father lived where it could get very cold and I knew we would visit him at least a couple of times. Well, I didn't feel comfortable using it because it came right up to where the baby's face was and Im a paranoid person so I was worried she might not be able to breathe. I found that she kept just as warm by having a blanket wrapped over top and not taking her out to the car until it had been warmed up. However, if its freezing where you are then I could see it being useful (if you aren't paranoid like me that is..)
Thanks, I like the idea of using a blanket over the strapped in baby. I live in NY so it does get cold, but I think a lot of people overdo it when it comes to keeping the baby warm. Even my mom was like "Maybe you should get a newborn snow suit to bring her home in!" !?!?! I laughed out loud. It's literally about 10 steps from the birthing center to the car, and our garage is attached to the house.

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Old 09-01-2010, 01:08 PM
 
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@ korey: blankets work just fine. This time we live in a much colder climate, but having two children I can't imagine hauling the infant bucket and a toddler to the store... I think baby will be worn, I can do that in the car... I personally find the bucket so heavy.
I have seen people putting some sort of blanket that has elastic around the carseat (so it is not udner baby) with on opening over the face... Maybe that's safe?
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