Our Most Loved Baby Items
One of the things I got asked most over this last year of having my 3rd babe was if I would share my most loved baby items. So now that Graham's 1st birthday is almost here I feel like I can give a good opinion of our favorite things over this past year.
I've broken things down in the the categories of Sleep, Play, Eat, Wear, Stay, & Go to make it easier if you're looking for a specific item!
Monitor - When we had our first baby 7 years ago, one of the things I KNEW I wanted was the Angelcare Baby Monitor with the Sensor pad. I was kind of a Nervous Nelly first-time mama so knowing I would get an alert if no motion was detected gave me the peace of mind I needed to sleep at night once I put him in his crib. Fast forward 6 years later and when I was about to have my 3rd baby boy I knew I still wanted to use Angelcare but our old one had gotten damaged in the move so I got their latest model (without the sensor - as much more more relaxed mama of 3, hah!) and have zero complaints. Very user friendly, nice big video screen, and good night vision. Check, check, check.
Lounger - Honestly, what I wanted to put here was the Fisher Price Rock n' Play. That was the real MVP for all of my babies. But they got recalled, sad day. So I don't think you can buy them anymore but if you can get a secondhand one, I loved ours for napping the baby around the house. I also used it for all 3 of my babes to sleep next to me at night before I transferred them to their cribs. My babes could never roll while they were in it but please do your own research on sleep safety. They did do a similar bassinet redesign after the recall but I don't have any experience with it so I can't give my full recommendation.
So instead, I'm recommending the Snuggle Me Organic Baby Lounger. I only had this one for Graham but I absolutely loved having it for him to nap wherever I was in the house. I would put it on the couch on the dining room table or on our bed depending on what I was working on that day and he would just snooze away alongside me.
Swaddles - I had a lot of different swaddle blankets but this Max and Moose swaddle is the one he liked the most. I used it as true swaddle when he was really little and then when he could bust out of it, it was one of his favorite cuddle blankets in the stroller. Once he could bust out of blanket swaddles, I switched to these Halo velcro swaddles and they were lifesavers.
Pacis - With my first son, I was gifted several different brands of pacifiers and tried my darnedest but he would never take a pacifier. He eventually found his fingers and sucked his two middle fingers for comfort. It was super endearing...until he was still doing it at 6 years old. Hah! So when it came to my second son, I was determined to get him to take a paci but he was super picky and after much trial and error, we finally found MAM pacifiers. Then this time around, I tried to get Graham to take some cute, trendy pacis but he wasn't having it and I knew which brand he would take, MAM. I've had several friends confirm this was the only brand their babies would take too.
Sleep Sack - I'm pretty strict on the no blankets or anything else in the crib so once my babes are done being swaddled, I move them to a sleep sack so I'm sure they're staying covered at night. These Kyte Baby sleep sacks are the softest thing you'll ever feel. And available in different kinds of thickness depending on the season. I'd want to sleep in it, too.
White Noise - I swear by white noise for my babies. I've used it with all of them and I feel like it's that signal they learn early on that it's night time. Also helps with not having to tiptoe around the house while they're sleeping.
Play Gym - It's funny to think about now, but when I had my first baby, I was so worried about how to entertain a newborn. Now I know that they just sleep and when they're awake they just want to be fed or have something interesting to look at. I loved this wooden play gym when he was itty bitty and just laid on his back and tried to bat at it the toys. It was also great for when he was learning to sit up and I'd stick it in front of him. It also looks pretty, so that helps too.
Activity Center - I know having extra baby gear around the house can be annoying but it's also SO helpful to getting things done. My guy hung out in this activity center everyday once he was old enough - it was so nice to know he was contained and content. I could cook dinner, run laundry up and down the stairs, and go to the bathroom knowing he wasn't getting into stuff.
Teething Toys - Oh teething, one of those things that just comes with the territory. I had so many teething toys but I liked these wood/fabric ones the best because they could chew on something soft or hard depending on their preference.
Walker - Once they get steady on those legs and start to think about walking, these push toys are the best. They can practice walking and stay steady. I love this firetruck one, so cute and a great price point.
Swing - The swing was pure GOLD for me for all of my babies. Each one loved to swing and would nap for HOURS in it. This was so incredibly helpful for me since I work from home, knowing I could put them in the swing for one of their naps and know I'd get a few solid hours was amazing. I would only do it for one nap during the day as I didn't want them to get dependent on the swinging motion to go to sleep. 10/10 recommend.
Learning Toys - It's so fun to get toys once they finally start being super interactive and enjoying them and being entertained for longer periods of time by them. I love the wooden learning style toys - especially the brand Kids Concept that you can find at ScaniBorn. They are well made and grow with them so well. So worth the investment in my opinion.
Bowls - We love these bamboo bowls with a suction bottom. The suction works really well and if you've ever had a baby knock an entire bowl of anything off their high chair, then you know how essential the suction bottom is. It comes with a nice spoon too when they start working on the self feeding.
Plate - Again with the necessity of having a plate with a suctioned bottom. This plate stays put really well and I love the dividers in it. Helps me to serve him different food groups to try at each meal.
Utensils - I have a love/hate relationship with when babies start feeding themselves. It's SO cute and SO messy. These spoons are great for new hands learning to hold and eat. You can find these and other cute dinnerware at Shop Bitte.
High Chair - This high chair is definitely as good as it looks. Crazy well made with two different style of tray options. It was the only high chair that I could find that would slide under our existing kitchen nook and not take up a ton of extra space in our already-small kitchen. It's definitely on the higher end price point wise, but I would still recommend based on the quality. lt also converts to a kids chair when they highchair stage is over. (I partnered with Micuna earlier this year but all opinions are my own.)
Shoes - Speaking of not falling off, we loved these Freshly Picked oxfords. Easy to put on and stay put. So well made and can wear for a long time. We've got the ones with soles ready to go for when he starts walking.
Hats - This was my first winter baby but man, I didn't realize how hard it would be to keep a hat on his head! He constantly ripped them off and threw them out of his car seat when I wasn't looking. Get a hat with Velcro or ties around the chin is my advice. H&M carries some cute and affordable sets.
Outerwear - So hard for me to invest in outerwear for babies when they wear it for such a short amount of time. I love ThredUp for finding good, quality secondhand pieces - you can search by size and brand and they make it very easy.
Rocker - I'm in the camp that believes a good rocker is essential in a nursery. Especially if you put your baby to sleep in their own room. You need a good spot to rock them back to sleep in and catch some Z's in yourself. I absolutely love this rocker - I love the look of it and how wide it is. I can easily cross my legs and curl up in it or have one of my other boys sit next to me in it.
Books - Starting to read to a baby at even a young age is so important. It's one of those special things that starts growing that bond and helping them learn. There are SO many books we love and it's definitely one of my favorite ways to spend time with my babes. Board books are a great place to start with age 0-1 to they can touch and play with them without ripping any pages. There's a great selection of books at Shop Bitte.
Bath - I absolutely loved having this bath - designed to drain into a sink when they're little and then fit right into a regular tub as they grow. My almost one year old still lays back and totally relaxes in this for bath time and it is so sweet.
Wrap - Keeping my babies close during those newborn days is one of my favorite things. Laying around the house and letting them nap on my chest those first weeks after they're born is the best. Then real life hits and I have to get back to my schedule and doing things with and for my other boys so the Solly Baby wrap came in so handy. Once you get the hang of how to wrap it, it is so incredibly comfortable to wear a newborn in.
Blanket - This blanket was a gift from his Grammy and I had no clue we would end up nicknaming him Lamby when I got it but it's so special and one of those things I'll hang onto forever. Nice, thick and beautifully made.
Animals - We loooove Cuddle + Kind dolls. Crazy adorable and well made and a company with a mission to give back by providing meals to those in need through every purchase. For every doll purchased they provide 10 meals to children in need working with World Food Program USA, Children's Hunger Fund, Breakfast Club of Canada, and WE Charity.
Diaper Bag - I don't know where the backpack diaper bag was with my first two boys but it is a game changer. This one from Freshly Picked takes the cake for me - so pretty, so roomy, so many pockets, and has held up so well.
Diapers - Graham has been my first son with sensitive skin but after the worse diaper rash I've ever seen, I knew I had to switch to a natural diaper. Parasol Co. diapers have been amazing, and we've had no diaper rashes since the switch! Not to mention they come in adorable designs and this company has amazing customer service.
Ointment - Speaking of sensitive skin, I also found out that Graham has eczema this winter. His poor cheeks get so red and dry and I was at my wit's end trying to get anything to make it less severe. Finally I heard about Tubby Todd All Over Ointment and cannot say enough good things about what it's done for his eczema. In just a few days, a severe breakout will be almost gone and then if I keep up with it daily, his skin continues to look great.
Sling - This was my first baby I had tried a ring sling with and I have loved it. Honestly, the easiest way to baby-wear in my opinion. Once you get the seat right on fitting a WildBird sling, you will not go back. They come in the prettiest colors and fabric options and I felt so confident taking him out in public in the winter months but still being able to keep him close and covered. I'm seriously not sure how I would survive teething without one of these slings.
Stroller - What do you do when you need a stroller that can accommodate 3 boys? You get the Evenflo Pivot Expand + Rider Board. I love that it can either be a single stroller that fits a car seat or an upright seat or a true double stroller. We go for walks every single day when it's nice out and we have loved how user friendly and durable this system is. (I partnered with Evenflo earlier this year but all thoughts and opinions are my own.)
Snacks - Once those babies start eating, it's all about the snacks. Do not leave home without them. I repeat, do not leave home without snacks. This snack cup filled with cheerios is my lifeline right now.
I hope this was helpful! There are SO many baby items out there and I know it can be overwhelming. So these were just the things that were the most used and most loved by me + my three boys!