Wednesday, January 16, 2013

baby things i love

huge adorable baby pic via

even though i have some friends that amazingly get away with having almost zero baby things i just couldn't help myself- i love shopping! however, baby stuff shopping made me overwhelmed right at the beginning. after talking to friends and family about what to get and what not to get i started my shopping quest.

i had no idea how much baby stuff there is out there. just too much!

but through the nine months (tomorrow!) of being a mommy i have come to find certain baby things that we have loved. i love reading other people's "baby stuff" lists and im glad i can finally write this. hope it helps!

Cool baby bottle! - Add the formula at the bottom and water up top then twist when you need the bottle made.

what's for dinner mom?
 why milk of course!

right after colette was born i found out pretty quickly that breastfeeding would be a challenge. my mom was not able to breastfeed but i was just hoping for the best. that somehow i would be overflowing with milk. nope. no milk- well a little bit. at two months the most milk i would produce was 2 oz. it was quite sad. at one point i was "triple feeding". first breastfeed on both sides, then formula feed, then pump. so basically i was getting maybe 20 mins to sleep in between all that. not fun!

we ended up going to formula feeding after seeing a lactation specialist who told me my breasts aren't the type that hold much milk. but what a relief! it was so great to go to formula and seeing colette happy. and mom was happy too (and dad!). 

out of all the brands of formula we used similac advanced. it was gentler on colette's tummy and didn't make her poop super weird. its pricey but its her health! costco is the best place to buy it. we used the premade liquid formula for the first month then switched to powder after that. i also loved using the 2 oz. premade formula bottles for night feeding- it was just easier. 

 if you do end up formula feeding sign up for similac's Strong Mom program. you get $5 coupons and every dollar counts right? 

in the beginning, our favorite bottles were medela with the enfamil slow flow nipple. as colette got older i started using the playtex ventaire bottles and the avent bottles. i love that the avent bottles don't have so many parts to wash and it never leaked when i stashed them in my diaper bag.

the munchkin sterilizer is such a timer saver. since i bottle feed i sterilize about once a week and this lets me microwave instead of boiling water.

baby timer!
the itzbeen timer saved me. i love this little gadget. best $17 ive spent. it helped me know how long its been since her last feeding, her last diaper change, nap, and a wild card button. it also has a tab to remind you which side you last started breastfeeding on. so great!

solid foods!
as for solid foods i use the munchkin spoons  and little bowls that ive collected through my flea market adventures. to store homemade baby food i use munchkin freezer food cups which i love! they make storing baby food so much more organized.

 i dont't have a particular favorite but i am looking forward to trying these. i've heard many good things about them. and colette is only getting messier by the day!

we have the graco contempo. it takes up a bit of space but we like how high up it is and how it stores compact.

cleaning up!
the boon grass countertop drying rack is amazing. between the lawn (a bigger size) and the grass im glad i bought the grass because i don't have much counter space. you can fit quite a few bottles. rings, nipples, and caps on the grass. very fun and useful- i like that i can separate it from the other dishes.

Big sister and little sister.

sleep training books! 
i did not get much sleep the first two months but colette started to sleep 7-8 hours through the night somewhere around 3 months. thank you babywise. i know lots of people hate this book but it worked for me and ry. maybe it will for you too! just use your common sense- we didn't follow it precisely but it still worked.

sound machine!
instead of a baby sound machine we used my iPod and docking station to play ambient white noise on repeat. works great and it doesn't take up a lot of room.

the baby burrito is so cute! we love the aden & anais muslin blankets (the twinkle pink is colette's favorite of the bunch we own). target has a pack of four but the quality and size are not the same as the single blanket we purchased on amazon. hope to get more for the next little one. also, my aunt handed down some swaddle me's  which we loved once colette started to attempt escape from her swaddle.

baby monitors! 
another aunt gifted me a wonderful, wonderful baby monitor. we LOVE it. i love being able to see if colette is breathing and not have to get out of bed (paranoid mom- i know) and the night vision is fantastic. its also nice that you can continue to add up to four cameras so you can keep an eye on your other kiddos. con? pricey.

colette is not a pacifier baby- although she is trying to find her thumb :(. you can take a binky away but not a thumb!

we love the nosefrida the snot sucker for getting out boogies and these baby nose cleaning tweezers.
the crane adorable hello kitty humidifier perches on her dresser. its just so cute and functional of course too. see here.

a friend gifted me a few babyganic products and we really like them. colette's cheeks are red and dry from teething and the dry weather- aveeno cream has been good to keep her cheeks looking cute.


she loves her toys!

hanging out!
colette adored the boppy newborn lounger. even though babies are not supposed to nap in it colette totally loved to nap there when she was super little- we just made sure to supervise her all the time.
she also loved to just hang out and stare at everyone/everything around her.

sitting up!
the bumbo was great up until now (9 months) but colette is getting too big for it- i bet in the next two months she won't be able to fit in it anymore. it did help her learn to sit up and she looked so adorable sitting in it. *the bumbo was recalled because mom's were using it incorrectly* the only way we use it is on the floor (carpeted floor) with my supervision at all times! we received the seat belt attachment in the mail and plan on using it with baby no. 2

my uncle bought colette the fisher-price rainforest jumperoo and generally she loves it. it depends on her mood, but when she's happy the jumperoo makes the day even better. hopefully she keeps falling more and more in love with it. cons? it takes up a good chunk of space.

here are some of colette's favorites:
01. take along tunes
02. stacker
03. sophie
04. rattle
05. teething ring (i have a different one from my friend A but this is sort of similar)

pee & poop

after encouragement from friends and family, i took the plunge into the world of cloth diapering- all the cloth diaper types and information out there can be really confusing!

here is what i did:

i purchased the Bare Minimum package deal at nikki's diapers, currently they are not available but will be once they get stocked up with the SmartFit prefolds. this package was the most economical and had everything i wanted in it. 6 size 1 wrap covers, 6 size 2 wrap covers, and 24 prefolds (12 size 1 and 12 size 2) and a free mini wet bag (more on that further down).

in the package i chose the Thirsties Duo Wrap Covers with the Aplix hook & loop closures. the colors are so fun and cute but to be more gender neutral i picked mainly white covers. with the prefolds i chose the unbleached indian prefolds. after washing & drying them 5-7 times they fluff up so nice.

snappi fasteners are quick and safer (im clumsy) than a regular pin for holding the cloth diaper together.

as for wet bags i purchased 2 of the planet wise diaper wet bags. they come in lots of fun prints too! some people do the pail method but the wet bag just seemed easier for me.

so here is an example of what i do if colette pees:
 01. have a fresh cloth diaper ready and the wet bag open
 02. undo the thristies wrap and unsnap the snappi
 03. remove the dirty pee diaper and put it straight into the wet bag and zip it up
 04. wipe. slip on the fresh cloth diaper
 05. secure it and go!

what about poop? gah i hate (but happy she is having a bowel movement) it when she poops in her cloth diaper! but here is what i do:
 01. get a fresh cloth diaper with a new wrap ready
 02. slip that under her current diaper without removing it yet
 03. undo the thirsties wrap and unsnap the snappi
 04. stop breathing
 05. wipe. wipe a lot.
 06. remove the dirty diaper and set it aside
 07. secure the new diaper
 08. put colette somewhere safe to play for a little while
 09. head to the bathroom. put on gloves
 10. use toilet paper to scoop the poop from the dirty diaper into the toilet. flush.
 11. hand wash the dirty diaper in the tub (i use dreft) to remove the stains
 12. start breathing again
 13. let air-dry till the next laundry time

whew! i know the poop is a lot of work but that is what i do- if you have any pointers i would love to hear em! by hand washing the poop diapers they have no stains and look really nice and clean- more work but i want to keep them as pristine as i can for as long as i can.

some people say not to use dreft but it works just fine and has not disrupted the absorbency of the diapers at all.

when wash day comes...
i collect my wet bag and the poop diapers that were air-drying and head to the laundry- wash them on hot water and dry them on high heat. and presto! we are done.

i think what bothers me most about cloth diapering is that it makes baby's bums really big- its cute but harder to buy clothing for. a few of colette's clothes just couldn't accomodate her bigger bottom because of the cloth diaper.

during the day i use cloth diapers and at night we use pampers baby dry. when i have used cloth diapers at night there have been big leaks and lots to clean up so i decided to use disposables.

pampers > huggies for sure. i think pampers are softer, more absorbent (yes a bit more expensive), and covers colette's bum better. huggies wipes didn't work for us- they were not as durable as pampers wipes and had alcohol. we use the pampers sensitive.

to make life easier, i do not cloth diaper if we are traveling, having a busy day, and at night. it has been very rewarding mainly for colette's bum (no rashes!) and our wallet (with all the formula we buy i feel it evens out :) ).

for our disposables we use the diaper dekor plus. the only thing i dislike about it is that you have to buy refills. but the best thing about it: NO smells!!! ive been to houses with the diaper genie and diaper champ...sometimes a little smelly...sometimes a lot smelly!

taking a walk around the block

Britax B-Ready Stroller

as a gift from my father-in-law we received the britax B-ready stroller. we loved all the configurations and how it can grow with our family. its really easy to put together and to whip out of the car when running errands or for just taking a stroll.

we own the britax b-safe infant car seat and love it. it's on the heavier side but appreciate that it doesn't feel like flimsy plastic. now as colette is growing bigger we use the britax marathon car seat.

carseat extras!
since we live in a chilly place a carseat bundle cover was a practical choice. we own the jj cole original bundle me and it has been a great help. before i would just wrap colette in a blanket that would eventually fall off but this helps keep her warm and cozy. plus it makes them look even cuter!

for the warmer months we use the carseat canopy- perfect for keeping strangers from coming up to her and touching her..weirdos.

diaper bags!
the diaper bag has become my new purse and here are my two favorites:
01. the petunia pickle bottom velcro boxy glazed in frolicking in fez. (the link is to the magnetic one- mines the old version)
02. the marc by marc jacobs pretty eliza baby bag in kava green multi (a fun bright pink)

the petunia pickle bottom bag was great for the first couple months since i wasn't schlepping around so much stuff but i started to take more trips and found that the marc jacobs bag was better for more things and longer trips. i liked how the petunia pickle has straps to wear as a backpack and the roll out diaper pad. but it wasn't super roomy for holding more things (i guess a bottle feeder has more stuff to carry?). i still use it for shorter trips or when i have to carry my bag as a backpack.

the marc jacobs has been great for airplane/longer trips and not gonna lie- i love the color! and maybe with more kids in the future i might have more to carry- haha.

for mom
things that i loved receiving during pregnancy:
01. visits from friends
02. friends letting you stay at their house for a day when your house smells "odd"
03. phone calls
04. packages in the mail
05. supportive comments ("You look great!""You are glowing!""Wow are you even pregnant?") seriously lay it on thick- who gets tired of a compliment?

things i loved once baby was born:
01. phone calls & space
02. support from friends & family
03. baby cuteness 24/7
04. a flexible & caring photographer 
05. no big belly!

things i did not love once baby was born:
01. not much sleep (join the club right?)
02. being sent sweets- a really thoughtful gesture but really id imagine most women who just give birth watch what they eat right away- no temptations please!
03. hubby having to go back to work sooner than id want (again join the club right?!)

hope this super long list helps anyone who is shopping/prepping for a baby!

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