Let’s face it…the tinier the baby, the more stuff they require!!! Why is that?? Why do we take the approach that more is more? Will more baby gear make our job as parents seem less overwhelming? NOT SO!!! Whatever our reasons, we want the best for them at the best price! I for one have been through multiple high chairs, strollers, carriers, swings, etc. and feel like a baby gear aficionado!! I can’t wait to share my favorites with you. Please make sure to pass this along to all of your friends/family that are expecting or recently had a baby. I hope that this list will help you/them find the best items for the best price on the first purchase!!
1. Safety First Adaptable High Chair. Not only is this my favorite high chair, but it is also extremely affordable!! It is priced just under $80.00, but the model I own is on sale for $52.99!! I own two of them for my twins and couldn’t be more pleased. Specifically, they boast 3 different recline positions, which is perfect for babies drinking bottles, 6 different heights, and a 4 position tray. Best of all, they have dishwasher-safe insert trays that actually fit in your dishwasher and machine washable seat cushions that are easy to disengage and reattach. They also have wheels with locks, which make them very easy to move around when need be. For the record, I started out with a Keekaroo Right Height and was completely disappointed. Not only was it extremely expensive (just under $300.00), but it was also heavy, hard to use, and way too bulky. I also own a Chicco Polly (just under $150.00) for our son, which was a huge improvement from the Keekaroo, but the seat cushion does not disengage and the strap locking mechanism broke after a month of use. We’ve never been able to use the straps since. Bottom line: Go for the Safety First!! You’ll love it.
2. Baby Jogger City Mini. This has been such a wonderful stroller for us. It is the perfect all around, dependable, easy-to-use stroller. It folds up in a cinch and it’s effortless to steer and push whether you’re on city sidewalks, or in the grass at the park. We have both the City Mini (just under $250.00) and the City Mini Double (just under $580.00). We use the Double most of the time now. In both models, the seats almost completely recline for naptime and they have large multi-position sun canopies with sun windows that Velcro open to check on your little one(s). Baby jogger also offers a riding board that we use for my son. It attaches to the back of the Double and allows him to ride along while holding onto the large rounded handlebar right in front of me. Perfect Stroller; it’s a little pricey, but it’s well worth it!!
3. Wubbanub. If you haven’t heard of this ingenuous item, check it out!!! Simply put, it’s a stuffed toy with a soothie pacifier attached! The soothie pacifiers are used in most hospitals and were in all three of my little ones’ cribs as they were wheeled into my hospital room after birth. Wubbanubs are easy for babies to hold onto and also rest on their little chests without falling too far from their reach. Best of all, they are machine washable and babies love their texture and bright colors!! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE these.
4. Homedics Lullaby and Sound Spa Projector. If you value your sleep at all, you’ve got to have at least two of these on hand for nighttime (one as a backup). I have been through a myriad of white noise machines, light projectors, and lullaby playlists, and this one machine has it all!! Did I mention that it costs less than $25.00?? My cousin, Jen, first introduced me to it and it has been a Godsend!! Macy’s carries them and I have also found them at Bed Bath & Beyond. Either way, you can apply your store coupons to get an even better deal. The only downside is that they don’t last long. In my experience, the projector or the music stops working after a few months, but I simply replace it. For the price and the rest it provides my babies at night, it’s well worth it!! As an aside, we live in Pittsburgh and on a recent trip to Sesame Place in Philadelphia, I left the “do-dee-do” machine (that’s what we call it) at home!! Not to worry, we found a Bed, Bath & Beyond and picked one up on our way to dinner!
5. Fisher Price Starlight Papasan Cradle Swing. Ah, the swing, the wondrous little cradle of comfort. I am indebted to this swing. After trying a plethora of other, more modern and even more expensive swings, we came back to the classic. It worked the best and retails anywhere from $143.29 to $176.99. All three of our little ones found comfort and SLEEP in this swing. It’s snuggly soft and swings front to back or side to side, whatever your little one prefers. It also boasts a starry night light show that projects onto the canopy and offers eight lullabies. Six swing speeds and two recline settings also help make this swing a favorite. When our babies were tiny, I loved to move these swings around the house to offer them some variety, while still knowing they were secure and comforted. As an aside, I did try the Mamaroo ($199.99-$239.00) and desperately wanted our little ones to love it, but none of them took to it. I did pass it along to a dear friend of mine a few months back and he says his little one likes it. For efficiency sake, Fisher Price is your best bet! And for all of you naysayers out there…YES, you do NEED a swing!!
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