(Closed) All the baby gear – Mama's, tell me what you needed, and what you didn't!

posted 4 years ago in Babies
Post # 31
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1245 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

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teacherbee01 :   My two cents now that I have an almost-18 month old. And congratulations!!!

  1. Stroller. I have the Chicco Keyfit travel system (~$300 or so), and in the early days it is really nice to have a stroller that works with the bucket car seat. Once they outgrow the bucket, it’s less important obviously, but the Keyfit is still a very nice stroller for my toddler and is something I can manage independently. I also got a used Cybex something-or-other on mega sale at Once Upon a Child (always check used stuff for recall notices). I feel like a two-seater isn’t really worth the weight/hassle until I actually have two kids to seat. 
  2. Baby food maker. Just no. We did a mix of purees and BLW, and food processor works just fine. 
  3. Exersaucer/Jumper/whatever. YES. They are big and obnoxious and short-lived and you do not want to over-use it due to developmental concerns. But in that window of time during which they are useful (from when your kid can sit independently until crawling), they are SUPER useful. eLook for a used one if cost is an issue. 
  4. Thermometer. I’m terrible with remembering brands. We have a good rectal one that we used for most of the first year (actually easier than under-arm for small babies, I find — just mind the, um, emissions, which can be a lil explosive), and have since switched to an ear one. I have not had good luck with forehead thermometers. 
  5. Diaper bag. I have the Skip Hop Duo and lovveee it. Very practical, and we got a color that my husband doesn’t mind carrying. But if I could do it again, I’d maybe get a backpack because the messenger shape is not the world’s most comfortable thing. 
Post # 32
Member
201 posts
Helper bee

1. Stroller – We have a Britax B-Ready, and I think I mainly picked it because it converts to a double and because it was part of the Britax travel system and I really wanted to go with the Britax car seat as I read lots of great reviews for infant car seat safety. It is heavy, but I think that makes it sturdy. It gets pricey because of the attachments and such, but we love it.

2. Baby food maker – Personally I don’t think it is necessary. We used our Nutri Ninja after steaming the vegetables. I actually remember using both freshly made food and also store-bought food (our baby is now a 2 year old).

3. Exercisers – We did get an exersaucer and did use it quite a bit. It was convenient as a place to keep baby entertained while getting stuff done. I think some people have mentioned consignment and this would be one of those purchases that could be bought second-hand – and then even consigned back after you are done with it as it is only used for a certain amount of time.

4. Thermometer – We have a rectal one and it works great (Vicks brand I think). We paid under $15 at a drugstore. Really accurate and easy to use.

5. Diaper bag – A backpack has been the most convenient for us. But don’t get me wrong, there are so many super cute ones out there, especially for mamas, so temptation is always there to make it cute, but functionally, the backpacks we use are really great and not too pricey. I find a duffle or luggage-style bag also works, and they have lots of cute, inexpensive ones at places like TJ Maxx or Marshall’s (not sure if those stores are in Canada!).

I also agree with others that for the most part you will figure out as you go along what works for you and baby. The good thing is that you can consign stuff or return stuff that you don’t use (our baby did not like the bumbo seat for example and this one type of swing/rocker that we got before we found one he did like). And there are soooo many things out there that are made for “babies” and they look like they are a necessity, or at least they market them that way, but really, there is probably a cheaper and easier way of accomplishing the same thing (ie: formula makers, super expensive diaper bags, and baby food makers).

Just a few things I got that I am so glad I did (not mentioned): diaper pail, a baby bath tub with a built in thermometer, swaddling blankets and wearable blankets, humidifier, diaper clutch.

 

Good luck and congrats again!! 🙂

Post # 33
Member
1470 posts
Bumble bee

I’m 21 weeks pregnant and also want the Uppababy Vista stroller – the 2017 version is actually lighter and leaner than the previous years’ versions.  🙂  I love the new colors, too.  It will be the only stroller I use (my sister has a Bob and never runs with it) and we are going to definitely try for a sibling within 2 years so the option to add the 2nd seat was super important to me!

I also love that it comes with the bassinet you can use in the home or convert the stroller into a pram.  My sister has the matching car seat and loves it – super safe and easy to click in.

Post # 34
Member
1149 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

Stroller:  I have a 5.5 month old and I am obsessed with my Uppababy Vista and Mesa car seat.  I walk everywhere and it is so smooth on any surface.  The basket is amazing.  It is a bit wide and heavy but it’s worth it.  Everything with strollers is a trade off.  If you get one that’s lighter, it’s not as sturdy.  I like the Cruz too but it doesn’t go over curbs even remotely as well (much smaller back wheels) and it’s not as sturdy or smooth.  We used the bassinet constantly at first but my (giant) DS grew out of it around 10 weeks. At that point I started using the regular toddler seat with the infant snugseat.  My baby is so happy and comfy in the seat.  If I’m driving somewhere, I use the car seat with it.  I don’t have a snack tray yet but I’ll get the uppababy one.  I have the parent organizer and it’s great.  It gets bad reviews so I wa scared off but someone got it for me and it’s great.  It fits a drink.  You don’t need a separate cup holder. 

I feel like the stroller is the most important purchase.  You use it every day for years!  

Baby food: I just started purees and you do not need anything special.  I steam or boil stuff and put it in a regular ninja then freeze individual servings in a silicone ice tray.  The purée phase is just a couple months.  Those special baby food makers are a total waste of money.

Exersaucer:  I got one as a gift and my baby loves it so far.  Even more important than that is an activity mat with hanging toys.  You need that from birth onward.  You can use it for tummy time and they can lie on backs and grab at the toys which is important for hand eye coordination.  We use it daily and I feel like we’ll use it for several more months.  I think it’s worth splurging on stuff that lasts longer.  I also have the Baby Bjorn bouncer which is great because it converts into a chair that the kid can use when he’s a bit older.  On the other hand, I have an expensive swing which is a waste because my baby stopped liking it after two months.  But yes I think some sort of exersaucer type thing is good.

Thermometer:  I have an ear one and just read another post here saying that I shouldn’t use it before six months.  Oops.  DS has never had a fever…at least not that I know of lol. 

Diaper bag:  i went fancy with a Marc Jacobs one.  I like it.  It’s navy and my DH is ok with it.  Backpacks or the skip hop ones seem fine too.  I rarely carry the diaper bag for prolonged periods of time.  It’s always in the stroller basket.  I wouldn’t get a leather one because I think that adds a lot of weight but other than that just pick whatever you like that has enough space.  And always bring at least two extra outfits for baby.  And one for yourself.

 A lot of other stuff depends on the baby.  I thought I’d love babywearing so I got the solly wrap and ergobaby 360, but I am not that into it and neither is my baby.  If you are in a big city, you could probably find a store that lets you try on different baby wraps.  Or try a friend’s (with the baby) before you buy.  

Feel free to ask more questions.  I am/was obsessed with baby gear.  I went to Nordstrom baby section today and was chatting with the saleswoman about strollers for 40 minutes.  It’s addictive lol

Post # 35
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1541 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

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pickles325 :  it’s so addictive! I was in a baby store the other day and a couple looking at strollers asked me about mine (Bugaboo buffalo). I spent like 15 mins talking strollers with them. I think the sales person thought I was crazy, esp since I knew stats off the top of my head like weights and widths etc. 

i did get a second stroller the Babyzen yoyo, you should check it out! There are a billion videos of the fold out there, it’s been feeding my obsession lately haha. Love my buffalo so much but like the Vista it’s not the smallest. 

Post # 36
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1470 posts
Bumble bee

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pickles325 :  Your post is so helpful, thank you!!  What do you think about the “rock-a-baby” or the bunny?  My friend said we HAVE to get it.  And hell, while we’re at it, any other must-haves or loves?  🙂

Post # 37
Member
9541 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

Stroller: If you’re sure you’re going to try for another, I’d get one that converts to a double. If you might only have the one, get a single. I like my City Mini GT for a single. Easy to push and fold, not too heavy. 

Baby food maker: Totally unnecessary. Use a regular blender/food pro or just go with baby led weaning.

Thermometer: I think the ear and forehead ones are crap. If I call my pedi with a temp from a rectal or ear, she always makes me retake it. I I use under the arm for an easy check and rectal for a real check. 

Diaper Bag: I didn’t want a purse looking bag because I wanted my husband to be able to carry it. We have a JuJuBee BFF and I like it, but in retrospect, we would have been fine with a cheaper bag. My biggest piece of advice is get a diaper changing clutch that you can grab instead of hauling the whole bag into the bathroom. 

Post # 38
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1547 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

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teacherbee01 :  

1. A great baby carrier, one that is proper for the baby’s little leg joints. I used a moby for the first 12 months and moved up to a Boba as the kids got older. Babies should be facing you in their carriers when little.

 

2. Don’t get a cheap stroller. I have 3 strollers and am happiest using the City Mini. I can steer it with one hand, which is great for taking walks with dogs, beer festivals with drinks etc. 😉 It folds easily and I don’t find it heavy at all.

3. You don’t need a baby food maker.

4. No fancy bottles, once I was done breast feeding my little one had to try a few different brands, so don’t stock up on one.

5. A & A swaddle clothes are the best, get the boutique ones vs chain store as they are larger. We sued them for everything, creating a play space on a floor while out and about, naps, burp clothes. They’re light weight and come in cute prints. They wash well too.

6. My kids loved their bouncy seats $40. We also used a rock n play a lot the first three months and a jumper as they got older. I hated our $200 high chair and wished we bought the Ikea one for $15. We did use our portable high chair that latches onto a table a lot when visiting friends and family.

7. don’t go crazy with the infant car seat and make sure to get one that is lightweight. We bought average infant seats and bought really nice (Diono Rainier, all steel frame) seats for the kids as they will be in those for 3+ years. (I’m one of those crazy rear-facing mamas).

Post # 39
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1547 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

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teacherbee01 :  Just get a basic thermometer. I got this $60 one that swipes across the forehead and the thing sucks. I’m so glad I second guessed it when one of my littles was sick, it’s never accurate. Now I just use a rectal one, no bells and whistles but doctors appreciate it when you get a temp that way when calling them and you know it’s accurate.

Post # 40
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5285 posts
Bee Keeper

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teacherbee01 :  Congrats! I’m currently 27 weeks pregnant with my first and like you I enjoyed doing alot of research in the earlier months before I set my heart on buying anything.

1.Stroller- I’m getting the Uppababy Vista my best friend has it and loves it and I have pushed it around while with her and loved the smoothness and the basket underneath. I plan on getting the Skip Hop holder for the handle of the stroller as the uppababy acessories for the cup holders are not that great (according to my friend)I will also be getting the Mesa carseat to match it. The price tag is pretty hefty but I fugure it wil last a long time and we plan to have another child in the near future. I’m lucky enough that my inlaws have agreed to buy it for us 🙂

2.Baby Food maker- I like all things natural so will be making all my own baby food. I registerd for the Baby Bullet because I liked the individual containers it comes with and 2 friends have it and like it so figured I will try it out. If I don’t like it I will just use the normal bullet or my blender and get the baby food holder cubes.

3. Exersaucer- I didn’t register for any of these. I figured I will decide on something once baby gets big enought to use it. I didnt want to have uncessary things that I wont be using for awhile

4.Thermometer- just a normal one from the drugstore

5. Diaper Bag- I got a black Skip Hop diaper bag and I love it! I got it on sale online so was pretty happy about that. My husband insisted on having his own diaper bag so I also got him a Skip Hop bag (on sale) that is a grey messenger style bag. The best thing about these bags is the clips on each side so you can attche them to the stroller

Post # 43
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1541 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

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teacherbee01 :  yep the $15 IKEA high chair is the best!! 

Post # 44
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1609 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

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teacherbee01 :  We have a Graco, and it can be hard to clean.  Right now we are just using it as a toddler chair.  It also has wheels which I thought would be useful, but it drives me crazy.  I say go for the Ikea one.  If you liked the Uppa Baby, you may want to look at the Britax B Ready.  It is similar and a bit cheaper.  I have an older model, so I know it has been redesigned, but I don’t know if it is good or bad, but it does convert to a double.  

Post # 45
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1036 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: City, State

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teacherbee01 :  

1. Stroller We got a Graco travel system. The bucket car seat was awesome, and just popping it on the stroller part was handy. But, now that our daughter has outgrown the bucket car seat, the two part stroller is too big and would take up our entire trunk. I’m not sure I’d get a travel system in hindsight but I would definitely get a bucket car seat instead of going straight for the convertible car seat.

2. Baby food maker – A blender and your kitchenware will be fine. I used my baby bullet for 2 months until my daughter refused all purees. Then we did finger feeding/modified baby led weaning. The best part of the baby bullet was the little containers and you can buy small containers on a tray anywhere.

3. Exercisers – we used ours all the time. To keep baby contained and for fun. Definitely worth it.

4. Thermometer –  We started with the under the arm, but the one I had was not consistent with temperatures. So we got the no touch. I love it. I can check my daughter’s temperature 500x when she’s sick without waking her.

5. Diaper bag – The most practical is a big one lol. I started out with a cheap winnie the pooh then got one that looks like a fancy handbag. But it fits sooo much stuff. The back pack vs traditional bag decision will be whatever you prefer.

Any other gear regrets or tips? Get a baby carrier. Sling/ergo360/lillebaby whatever. It’s defintiely the best thing we had.

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