This ‘six of the best’ is slightly different that usual, but I wanted to share with you the top six products that I have found to be most invaluable as a ‘baby mama’. There are so many products that could have made the cut, but for me these are the items that have made my life a lot easier.
This has been an invaluable baby item in our household. I’ve used it everyday since Phoebe was born (she’s now nearly one) when i’ve needed to take a shower and before she could sit/crawl it was great to pop her in it whilst I was making dinner and she could sit safely and securely and watch me attempt to cook!
The 3 adjustable height settings offer a good range, from an almost horizontal position for sleeping to a more comfortable upright position for feeding/playing. The bouncer also folds flat very easily & is really portable due to its small, flat footprint.
Apart from the ergonomic design that ensures Phoebs is snug and secure, what I like most about the BabyBjorn bouncer is the ease at which it can be bounced; in the early days it was easy to bounce with my foot whilst having a drink or eating dinner, and now Phoebe is strong enough she can easily bounce herself. We also bought the wooden toy that attaches to the front which is a great distraction. Even now, she still loves playing with it and giving it a good bat.
Longevity wise the bouncer can be used up until approximately 2 years of age. It can be used as a bouncer from birth and once your child has learned to walk and sit down unaided, you can turn the fabric around and use it as a comfortable chair.
2 // Baby sleeping bags
It was a no-brainer to include baby sleeping bags in my ‘top 6’ and apart from in the early weeks when I used a Little Green Sheep Newborn Baby Pouch (which was amazing btw!) , I wouldn’t consider putting Phoebe to sleep in anything else. Not only are they convenient to use and snug for babies, they also give parents peace of mind that their little ones aren’t at risk from loose bedding which can contrubite to SIDS. Parents of active babies will also appreciate that no matter how much they wriggle during the night , their little one is still covered.
Baby sleeping bags are sold all over the show, at varying prices, but having tried numerous different brands, I can definitely say that they vary wildly in terms of quality and comfort. My three favourite brands are Aden + Anais, Grobag and Slumbersac, all of which offer sleeping bags of varying togs, materials and gorgeous patterns.
In the summer months, I’m a huge fan of Aden + Anais’ classic muslin sleeping bags (0.6 tog). They are super soft, have lovely patterns and wash really well.
For normal year-round use, Grobag are my go-to sleeping bags. Slightly more expensive that other brands, but totally worth it, I really can’t fault them. There are lots of lovely patterns and colours to choose from to suit every taste, they are made from the softest cotton and each bag is sold with a free nursery thermometer and guide of what to wear.
For extra cold nights, Phoebe is kept all warm and toasty in a Slumbersac luxury duck down sleeping bag. Suitable for use when the room temperature is 18 degrees centigrade or lower, this sleeping bag definitely keeps Phoebs warm and snug. Slumbersac has a brilliant range of sleeping bags of differing togs, patterns and materials, plus they do a range of travel sleeping bags like the Bubble Dot one pictured above. Ingeniously, they have also just introduced a range of baby sleeping bag with openings for feet so your little one can walk freely without tripping up while staying cosy in their bag!
3 // Cuddedry bath towel
A must have for any parent, the Cuddledry bath towel is such a clever invention. By wearing the towel like an apron, it allows me to have both hands free to safely lift Phoebe out of the bath to dry her and the hood is perfect for keeping her head snug and warm.
Made with staysoft bamboo and pure cotton, the towel is thick, soft and highly absorbent. It’s also huge, so not only does it keep Phoebe toasty after her bath, it also keeps me dry and protected from her over exuberant splashing!
4 // Angelcare AC401 Movement and Sound Monitor
I was in two minds whether to add the Angelcare to this list or the BT Video Monitor 7500 Lightshow that I recently reviewed, but although I now use and love the video monitor, it was the Angelcare AC401 Movement and Sound Monitor that gave me peace of mind in the newborn days.
Having read horror stories about SIDS, I wanted a way of monitoring her breathing and I can’t fault the Angelcare. It’s reliable, easy to use and has a whole host of other useful functions to help ease anxiety and worry. We still use it nearly 4 years later as a monitor for Jack, without the movement sensor pad of course!
I love this clever, ergonomically-designed bath support. It holds Phoebe comfortably and securely during her bath, and it leaves my hands free to wash and play with her. The reclining position also allows me to wash her hair without getting her face wet which is a must for a little one.
6 // Baby carrier
A well made sling or supportive soft infant carrier is a must have for new mums. There are endless options on the market and I always advise friends to try lots of different styles on until you find one that fits perfectly, is comfortable and offers both you and the baby lots of support. I have three that I chop and change between:
BabyBjorn Baby Carrier Original – This has been with me since Jack was a newborn and I love it. Both Andy and I find it comfortable to wear and most importantly Phoebe is well supported in it.
Babymoov Anatomical Baby Carrier – This is a recent addition, but I love it. Phoebe is more enclosed and snug in it, so it’s brilliant when she wants a snooze or in a grump and needs extra cuddles! I also really like that there are 3 wearing positions, facing the carrier, on the hip and on the back and cleverly there is a UV protection sun cap and detachable cloak for additional safety when you’re out in the sun.
the babasling – Now Phoebe is older and likes to sit on my hip a lot, I tend to use the babasling in the ‘side saddle’ position, which is essentially her sitting on my hip with the main fabric of the hammock supporting her back and putting less strain on my arms! Hurrah! I keep it in my car so I always have it to hand for little jaunts to the shops / trips to the park. Read my full review of the babsling here.
What baby products could you not live without? Leave me a comment below.