I did almost all of my baby product research by reading personal blogs rather than website product reviews. In my opinion, most product reviews are very one-sided; someone who is satisfied with a product that she/he expected to be usually isn’t going to take the time to review a product (at least I don’t unless my expectations are far exceeded – usually not the case!).
So like I said – I relied on personal blogs. I figured if friends and family graciously wanted to purchase us gifts that I might as well take the registry thing very serious and make sure that what we registered for was practical for not only Hadley, but other future kid(s) as well.
Hadley is only 2.5 months old, so there are several things we received that I haven’t even touched yet. My review below is based purely on the products we’ve used and loved so far.
1.) Fisher Price Swing – We absolutely, positively could not live without this swing. Hadley has slept in it since the day we got home. She didn’t like sleeping in her bassinet, so she’s been taking most naps and sleeping at night in this swing.
2.) Fisher Price Bouncer – We started using the bouncer about four weeks ago. Hadley actually loves watching TV for about 15-30 minutes at a time, so this is her little seat. 🙂 It sounds crazy, but it actually helps her do her business as well. We think it’s just the way she’s angled when she sits in it, but 75% of the time she’s in it she will go. Ha!
3.) Baby Cache Crib and Dresser – We are in LOVE with her furniture and are excited to use it for all of our future bab(y)(ies). The style we picked out is gender neutral (we will just have to change out the faux-crystal knobs on the dresser if we have a boy!) and will convert to a full-size bed one day. It’s super durable but light enough to move around the room. We’ve been thrilled so far.
4.) Babies R Us Glider – This is the best chair around for the price!
5.) Britax Travel System – I did not take picking out a car seat and stroller lightly! I wanted one that was top-notch in safety, gender neutral, durable for several years for multiple babies, and that folded up with one hand. I visited Babies R Us to do some “test driving” three times as well as had a lot of conversations with other mamas. I am thrilled with the Britax! Plus, anything that’s good enough for the royal baby is good enough for Hadley. 😉
6.) BOB SE Revolution Jogging Stroller – So I haven’t used mine yet, but it’s sitting in my garage waiting for warmer weather! Since Jamie and I both like to run, we are pumped to take Hadley with us!
7.) Diaper Genie – Kind of a pest to keep up with the inserts, taking out the full bags (Jamie’s job – hehe), but in our opinion it’s 100% worth it to keep the smell of dirty diapers out of our house!
8.) Stroller Arch – This is the cutest thing in the world! One of my students had a baby last spring, and when she came to visit me I noticed the arch and how much her daughter was captivated by it! Sure enough, Hadley loves it too! We usually put her in her carseat first and then put the arch on it. If she’s crying when we first put her in, she usually stops as soon as she sees the arch! It has a little mirror on it that she loves staring at. In my opinion, it’s a must-have.
9.) Carter’s Zip Up Jammies – Can’t. Get. Enough! By far the BEST pajamas!
10.) Cloth Diaper Burp Cloths – We have a bunch of burp cloths, but the ones my friend Mel Hall made me are by the far the absolute BEST! She doesn’t sell the ones she makes, but this link is similar to the style she made me. My friend Bethy also makes some gorgeous burp clothes (shown below), and she does sell hers! Cloth diapers make the BEST burp cloths!
11.) Dr. Brown Bottles – Don’t try another kind! You can’t beat these. We used Avent at first, but switching to Dr. Brown has made a HUGE difference! We’ve had very few (if any) tummy issues since we switched.
12.) Medela Double Electric Breast Pump – I definitely had sticker shock when I saw how much breast pumps are. I wasn’t expecting to exclusively pump, but I do (ask me about it if you’re interested/have to go this route with your babe), and this pump is my buddy! We spend 20 minutes together six times a day, so I’d say the investment was a good one!
15.) Travel Wipes Case – My friend Mel also made this for me! Mine looks similar in style to this one, and it’s great.
16.) Changing Pad Covers – We got three, and that was the perfect number. We have two from Babies R Us and one from Target.
17.) Changing Pad Liners – I kind of wondered at first if these were necessary, but anything that reduces the amount of laundry I do is a big win in my book! Even little girls have surprise tinkles that make a mess!
18.) Graco Blossom 4-in-1 Seating System (highchair) – Holy moly! This thing is awesome! We just started putting Hadley in it a couple weeks ago, and she fits so great! We won’t need it for feeding purposes for a few more months, but it’s fun to put her in it while I’m doing dishes, cleaning the kitchen, etc. Like the name implies, it can be used four different ways as the baby grows, so this is one item that will be around the DeSpain household for a long time! So glad we got a good one.
19.) Baby Einstein DVDs – Call me the worst mom ever for letting Hadley watch TV at such a young age, but she is totally captivated by these DVDs! It’s so fun watching her in her bouncer kicking and giggling at the screen. She watches these once or twice a day for about 20 minutes at a time.
20.) Wubbanub – May the Lord be with us if we ever lose this thing! It’s her BFF and a total lifesaver when a meltdown is near! She loves to hold it like her baby.
21.) Stride Rite Crib and Crawl Shoes – We LOVE these shoes because they actually stay on her feet! Plus they are super cute. 🙂 You can see them on her feet in this pic!
22.) Crib Mobile – I’ve read that crib mobiles are actually a bad thing because they don’t teach the baby that the crib is for sleep, but Hadley loves laying in her crib and watching this thing go round and round! Anything that keeps her happy and occupied is a win for us!
23.) Boon Lawn Drying Rack – Phenomenal bottle drying place.
24.) Bottle Warmer – We currently use the Avent bottle warmer since we used to use Avent bottles, but it’s nothing I’d recommend. I’m only putting it on my list because a bottle warmer in general is a must-have if you use bottles.
25.) Kate Spade Diaper Bag – I got this bag super cheap during the Kate Spade online Secret Sale, and I am 100% obsessed! It’s the best purse/diaper bag combo. It has a zillion little pockets for diapers, bottles, pacis, burp cloths, you name it! Plus I keep all of my usual purse junk in there as well! Love love love.
26.) Thick Hooded Towels – Can’t get enough! We thoroughly enjoy picking out what little animal she’s going to be every night. 🙂 The thick ones that you buy individually are the warmest and snuggliest!
27.) Johnsons Baby Wash and Baby Lotion – There’s few things better than snuggling a little baby in a hooded towel who smells like Johnsons. Swoon.
28.) Costco-brand wipes (Kirklands) – They are HANDS DOWN the BEST wipes! They don’t stick together, are really thick, and very soft on Hadley’s cutie booty!
29.) Sleep Sheep – We put the sleep sheep on once we’ve laid her down in her crib for naps, and it seems to help put her into a deep sleep. Another winner.
30.) Snuggly blankets – We have about six we rotate through!
31.) Bottle Brush – Get a few!
32.) Milk Storage Bags – If you’re going to pump, keep these on hand!
As aforementioned, these are just the products that we received/purchased, loved, and definitely feel are worthy of a recommendation! Feel free to message me on facebook or email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any questions.