Move Over Mary Poppins!

The real life adventures of one nanny, her husband, child, dogs, house, and whatever else crosses her path.

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The Gear Report

Recently, I was asked by my mother to gather up a list of baby products that I felt were useful, if not necessary, and a good value, for my sister-in-law, who's expecting in May. The same day, pal Fibby asked a few of her friends the same question via email. I thought, aha! here's a relevant topic for the blog, so, forgive me, Fibs, here is the meat of that email, edited for blog format. Feel free to find my thoughts preposterous, you know I don't mind.

I heart:

~The Fisher Price Space Saver Highchair, because it works for infants as a seat, all the way through to a meal time toddler booster, and it just attaches to your existing chairs - no extra space needed!

~The Infantino Giddy Up & Go Gym, and
~The Tiny Love Tiny Smarts 5 Pack
**I got these two gifts together, and Felix LOVES them! He spends hours playing in the gym, at 2 months - it's a miracle!

~I love my Vera Bradley diaper bag, since it's classy and functional, and I've added a Purseket to it, for added organization

~While I'm not a Baby Einstein believer, I do love Bard the Dragon from the original Baby Mozart, and so does Mark, so we picked the Graco Baby Einstein Exersaucer.

~We've used this sleep positioner since the day he came home, and it's inexpensive but good if you feel the need to have one, but the best bedtime thing when he was tiny was this sleep sack, since we don't keep the heat very high in our house, especially at night.

~I needed a tough, adaptable urban assault stroller for the mean streets of Boston, in all weathers, due to work, and while those Bugaboo ones are awfully sexy, after much research, I discovered the Britax Vigour stroller, and Companion infant car seat, and they are all the best of the Bugaboo's features for about half the price, even with the car seat, which is an add on, and you'd still have to buy the car seat and an adapter kit for your Bugaboo. I've tricked my stroller out for city nannying outings with a rain cover, sun shade, and stroller caddy.

~We registered for, and use, the Fisher Price Baby Papasan, but Felix actually enjoys the Carter's Bouncy Seat that the family I work for saved for our use. It's not on the market anymore, makes a similar one. What I like about this style seat versus the Papasan is that you can hang/interchange different toys, which keeps my little one happier longer.

~If you're looking for a breast pump for occasional pumping, versus serious pumping for going back to work, I recommend the Avent system. The hand held Isis model is inexpensive, easy to use, and effective.

~Any board book by Sandra Boynton!!!!! My personal favorites are "Snuggle Puppy," "But Not the Hippopotamus," "The Going to Bed Book," and "Birthday Monsters."

~Cloth diapers for burp cloths. They're super absorbent, bleachable, and cheap. A dozen gets us through two weeks, on average.

~A Dutaillier glider rocker and footstool AND Boppy pillow for the nursery, especially if you're nursing. I know the gliders are pricey, but you can usually get good deals on them on Craigslist and Ebay, since people sell them after they're done having babies.

~I use this changing pad because I like the Serta Sheep, and I don't recommend a cover, it's just more laundry to do. This cleans up nicely in a pinch with baby wipes, and with dish soap and warm water for a more serious clean.

~I DON'T recommend our monitor. We got the Graco Digital iMonitor, since it had a lot of the monitor features I wanted, but what it also has is one of those rechargeable battery packs, like you find in a cordless phone, and it doesn't hold a charge when it's out of its dock for more than about five minutes, so you're limited to places near an outlet. I'd go for one that uses regular batteries in the receiver. That way you can recharge your own batteries.

I'm sure there's more, and I'm sure I'll have more to say on the subject as Felix gets bigger and more active, but that's it for now.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see you are in the Sandra Boynton phase. I still have those books memorized. My son is 3 1/2 but still makes me read them. The cardboard is a all bent and shredding from being chewed on a baby. So you have that to look forward to. Pictures?

1/23/08, 7:27 PM  
Blogger CDG said...

oh, i know all of the titles I mentioned by heart already :) eight years of nannying will do that for you...

1/23/08, 8:47 PM  
Blogger phoebe said...

The sun has set, not long ago - Now everybody goes below... I sometimes find myself reciting the books in my head as I walk places.

1/23/08, 8:48 PM  
Blogger Smokey Jones said...

I have a love/hate relationship with my Graco iMonitor. When it works, the audio quality is awesome. Get the transmitter or the receiver positioned not quite right though, and it's the unrelenting "Beep! Beep! Beep!"

The battery pack, like most cordless phone battery packs, won't take a decent charge anymore after a year or so of heavy use. Unfortunately, the folks at Graco apparently wanted to make it as difficult as possible to find a replacement battery. I found one at a local Batteries Plus, but I had to bring the battery in to match it up myself. It seems that it's almost exactly the same as a very common NiMH cordless phone battery, except they switched the red and black wires in the connector. Bastards.

5/28/08, 4:24 PM  

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