Monday, July 30, 2012

Baby Registry Helper: My Favorite Baby Products

By: Alexandra Holmes

I remember the first time I started looking at what to add to my baby registry when I was pregnant with my oldest boy, I was totally overwhelmed and ended up with stuff that I never actually used. There is enough to stress yourself out about when you are newly pregnant: "Will I be a good parent? Am I going to raise a crazy person? What if Baby grows up and marries someone that I don't like? Do I need to apply for Baby's preschool now??? AAGH!!". Hopefully the list below can give you some ideas for the baby registry and take this stressor off of your list.

I will say there are a lot of items listed below, I tried to put everything that I used or have found that I really liked or found useful. I included a few extra specialty categories, I had NICU babies and included some things that were helpful during that trying time and my sister in law, Amy, helped me create a section that I call "Granola Extras" for more natural oriented mommies. There is so much interest in this right now that I think this will end up being it's own topic coming up but I will give you the readers digest version today.

Consider this list some stand in "Seasoned Mom" advice if you happen to not have many veteran mommies around, I know that, outside of a few family members, I didn't when I had Aidan.

I tried to put links to as much as I could.

Ok, there is a lot here so if you're pregnant go take a potty break and get a bowl of ice cream and a rib-eye steak to tide you over through the reading. ;)

Wellements 56811 Wellements Gripe Water for Colic- 1x4 OZ: This stuff is A LIFESAVER! I gave it to my boys for almost everything from tummy aches to mystery fussiness, it is yummy and natural and I can't say enough about it.

Dr. Brown's Natural Flow 3-Pk. 8-Oz. Bottles: The only bottle that I ever recommend.

Poly-Vi-Sol Vitamin Supplement: I added this to pumped breast milk and formula when my boys would get sick, transition to new foods, or just have times when they weren't getting as many nutrients or needed a vitamin boost. Keep in mind my guys were preemie little tots and needed some extra help sometimes but all babies have some times when they are not getting the full daily amount of nutrition.

Soft tip. Flexible spoons: these make the transition to food much easier for your and little beebee.

Plain white cloth diapers: Not the fancy, expensive ones for diapering but the plain rectangle ones. these make the best burp rags and are cheap.

Breast Feeding:
Medela Silicone Nipple Shields: See my post on new babies where I already covered why I love these.

Medela Pump in Style Breast Pump: This is the same system that they used at the NICU but in a compact size and in a easy to take along bag.

Nursing Cover: I wasn't into showing off all my "assets" when I was feeding my crew of heathens so I bought one of these chic nursing covers which are way easier than covering with a blanket and stay put. I usually was doing this with no hands available so it helped.

Breast Friend Nursing Pillow:I fed two at a time, no problem on this thing and there is a belt and a pocket for the remote and breastfeeding accessories...LOVED IT!

Lactation Specialist: Ok, this isn't a thing it's a person but the one I had is the main reason that I successfully breastfed the little guys and they are amazing. Most midwives can do the same thing and most hospitals have them available by request. Ask your doctor about it.

I don't have list for this but I will give you the summary of my opinion on diapering. Let me start off by clarifying, I didn't use cloth diapers and know nothing about them. I will go into those in a later post.

Pampers Swaddlers, Size 1 (8-14 lbs.), 210 ct. - Diapers Pampers Swaddlers Sensitive for the early days, again, this is what the NICU uses so I defer to their expertise. Luvs will do for the 3 to 6 month phase before they really start filling up diapers. Huggies or Sam's brand have been our staple from 6 months on and now we are potty training and use pull ups FINALLY!

Wipes are a different story...Huggies are the way to go....Pampers are too thin and stretchy and wet and off brands tend to be rough or sting their bottoms.

My personal favorite thing to use for baby baths is a foam sponge cushion in a sink. I had three different baby baths, the most recent had a detachable sprayer and made a whirlpool, and in addition to the fact that these baths take up a lot of awkward space they are also for the most part useless and a waste of money. It is, like everything, just about personal preference.

So this section is pretty important because you are by far the most important baby care item. If you don't take proper care of yourself then you can't possibly take the best care of your little one. I only included a few of my favorite mommy care things but as long as you remember how important your self care is.

Burt's Bees Moma Bee Nourishing Body Oil: This stuff smells like bright fresh lemon and feels SO good. When I was pregnant I would put it on after a shower and lay on my bed under the fan and I still use it all the time in my bath or after a shower. I absolutely love it.

Dermoplast Pain Relieving Spray: Ok, so don't go putting this on your registry....but I feel like this is a secret that has to be shared. This spray was given to me by a really nice nurse as soon as I got to the post partum floor with my oldest and it was awesome. It is used for your nether regions and gets rid of ALL post partum soreness down there.

Malimoo Baby Pretty Pushers Delivery Dress: I didn't know about this when I was having babies but I think it is so cute. It is a pretty halter dress made especially for the big day! Gone are the dingy hospital gowns that have been worn by tons of people, these dresses are not only soft and comfy but they have as many openings as any hospital gown and give you flexibility to be in any position you end up in. It's perfect for any stylish soon-to-be pretty pusher. The best part of these dresses are the themes that each dress has from "Dreams of Sushi" to themes of coffee and other things that we give up until after the big push. The one below is "I Dream of Mai Tais".

There is so much more but like I said, the most important part is that you have to remember to TAKE CARE OF MOMMY! (Show your hubby that last part)

Baby Carrier/Wrap: (e.g. Moby Wrap, more in the granola section) These are an all around good thing, my main use was for doing dishes but there are many benefits to these wraps. As a side note, you can easily fit two babies in here and I even fit all three little guys when they were pretty small.

Granola Extras: This section is named just for my sister-in-law, Amy, and is not my area of expertise but these are product that many people swear by so I wanted to include them as well. I am going to do another dedicated post on this soon because I got tons of great information from Amy and I have learned more about it recently while doing this. Below is the short list of the top must haves and I will go into deeper detail in the next post.

Amy's List of Granola Must Haves:

1. Coconut Oil: This is used for so many things from cooking to making your own cloth diaper safe cloth diaper ointment. More Information on Coconut Oil

2. Essential oils: These are used to treat anything from skin issues to sore throats, anxiety, pain, fever, nausea, birth, and much more. It's important to know that oils need to be taken seriously and can be poisonous if ingested the wrong way and most of the time they need to be diluted in a carrier oil (like coconut oil) when put on the skin...especially with babies and always check with a guide or experienced user before using them on a baby...some can even hinder breathing. More information on Essential Oils

3. Baltic Amber: Baltic amber naturally helps with teething pain and is said to offer many benefits including immune boosting properties, naturally has a calming effect on baby, natural anti-inflammatory and therapeutic properties, and is recognized by allopathic medicine as a natural analgesic. More Information on Amber

4. Baby carriers (wraps): The Moby wrap and different types of woven wraps are a favorite tool for many new parents but in the natural circles they even come along with a trendy name and are somewhat of a movement. I tease about the "baby wearing"  term just because it seems goofy to give something so simple a name but with that said I completely believe that physical closeness from early on is a very important and sometimes overlooked tool. It isn't just for mommy's emotional benefit but actually offers many health benefits to Mom and Baby.Not to mention, as I said earlier, this is the only way I ever got any laundry and dished done.  More Information on Baby Wearing

5. Cloth diapers: Ok, there is TONS of information on cloth diapers...Google it...even I am a little overwhelmed with the wealth of information available on these. I will put all the secrets and details that my sister in law gave me on my next post, so come back if you are interested. More information on Cloth Diapers

Well, that's it...are you worn out now? I am! I hope this helps and check back for more information.

Now you can email me any questions, comments, or feedback that you may have about anything here on the site at I look forward to hearing from you.

Thanks for Reading!