About a year ago (almost exactly), I put together a two-part post on baby stuff that I had discovered and really liked since Cedar was born. Part One was on stuff for 0-6 months and Part Two was on stuff for 6-12 months. Cedar was only about ten months old at the time and a certain friend, who shall remain nameless,
mocked teased me about posting a list that went past how old my baby was, especially if I found anything else I really liked before Cedar was past twelve months old. With that in mind, I would like to clarify that the majority of the stuff in this addendum has been stuff that I’ve discovered and really liked since having Genoa. So there! *smile* Though we ended up not buying much more for a second baby, there definitely have been a few things that have come in very handy when juggling two little ones.
Ergo: I’ve long been a wrap girl, and for the newborn days, that is still definitely my preferred mode of babywearing. However, for most of the families I’m around, they all love their Ergos. So for a long time, I was very against ever getting an Ergo since that’s what everybody else had (yes, that’s immature). But, during my pregnancy with Genoa, God worked on my heart and broke me of that pride, and so I asked for one for Genoa’s baby shower. Several of my friends went together and got me this lovely green one…and after a few weeks, I was hooked. Like I said, I still prefer wraps for the newborn days, and my Bali Breeze wrap is still the coolest babywearing item for our hot, hot summers, but especially as Genoa gets older, I find myself reaching for my Ergo more and more. It’s just so fast to put on compared to wraps, which is a good thing as you’re trying to keep track of a busy toddler while you put on the baby. I especially appreciated its versatility during a recent shopping trip to IKEA. Genoa started out in it, but after awhile wanted to get out so she could face front for awhile. I was able to just unbuckle the top strap and leave it fastened around my waist, ready for whenever she wanted to cuddle back in it again. It was so much nicer than having to figure out where you’re going to put several yards of fabric while shopping. So, yeah, I’m very glad that I finally got over my pride in this regard…as I now am happily joining the ranks of Ergo-lovers.
BabyLegs: For the past couple years, I’ve heard of BabyLegs on different natural baby stuff sites. They sounded cute and convenient, but I was never a big fan of legwarmers on boys so I didn’t try to find any when Cedar was little. I had kind of forgotten about them until about a month ago when my mother-in-law gave Genoa some…and they were great! Not only do they look absolutely adorable on her chubby little legs, but they’re so much easier to deal with when changing diapers. Also, as the seasons change, we have cold mornings that warm up a lot by the afternoon and the BabyLegs make it much easier to layer warmth and not have to go through several outfits during the day. I also recently used them on Genoa’s arms to protect them from the sun during a trip to the beach (it wouldn’t have worked that well if it had been a hot day, but it was breezy and cooler). They can definitely be pricey, but I’ve found a couple at a local children’s store that were majorly marked-down. I also know of several mamas who made their own out of clearance knee highs and the like.
Bouncy seat: Before I had Cedar, I was of the hard-core babywearing mindset that you should always wear your baby and never use any kind of “baby-holder” (YAY for all-or-nothing personalities!). After Cedar was born, that mindset wasn’t too hard to maintain. It was winter and so I cozily wore in him the Sleepy Wrap (now called the Boba Wrap) most of the time, and I loved it. When he got old enough to enjoy playing with toys, he would spend a little time on a blanket on the floor. And when I got pregnant with Genoa and it wasn’t as comfortable to wear him so much, by that time he preferred being down so he could explore anyway. But then I had Genoa. She lived in the Sleepy Wrap for about the first six weeks, but then we started to move into our intense CA summers and wearing her for any prolonged period of time was very hot for both of us (even with the gauze wrap). That, and, as thankful as I am to be able to wear her when I need to deal with Cedar, it honestly is much easier to change his diaper, help him onto the potty, etc. when I’m not wearing Genoa. So…at my husband’s suggestion, I had to swallow my pride yet again…and we bought a bouncy seat. !!! One of those supposedly horrible “baby-holders”. And it’s actually been really nice to have. Having a place to put her while I’m doing something with Cedar is convenient and she really enjoys it. And, at least in regard to her big brother, it’s a lot safer when they “play together” because I don’t have to worry about Cedar accidentally falling on top of her, etc. I’m still a big fan of babywearing and use it often, but I’ve just tempered it a little with what works best for our family.
Vicks Baby Rectal Thermometer: In the past several years, we’ve had kind of a sad history in regard to thermometers. My parents gave us a nice one when got married (as part of an inside joke), but for some reason it never worked very well. Several came home with us from the NICU and there’s always been one in each birthing kit. But those always end up stopping working after a couple uses. We’re not sick very often, but especially with babies, I wanted to make sure to have a thermometer that consistently worked (novel concept!). After reading many different Amazon reviews, I finally ended up going with the Vicks Baby Rectal Thermometer. I didn’t really get a chance to test it out until after Genoa was born. Because I had tested positive for Group B Strep and hadn’t used the antibiotics during labour, we needed to monitor Genoa very closely for the first couple of days to make sure that she didn’t show any signs of infection. I took her temperature with pretty much every diaper change for awhile and that thermometer was great. It only took a couple seconds (and for some reason, it always calmed Genoa down when she was upset because she was getting her diaper changed) and was very accurate. It’s been used pretty regularly since then and has continued to work great. I’m very thankful we finally found a thermometer that liked our family!
Graham Gardens’ Tailfeathers Zinc Cream: I mentioned this cream in my post on cloth diapering, but it bears mention here too. In short, this stuff is amazing! It has helped heal every single rash I’ve put it on…even when other creams couldn’t do it. And, one of my favourite features…it comes in a tub so you can get every last bit out (and control how much you use), something that never happens with the stuff that comes in a tube. Love this stuff!
Hyland’s Colic Tablets and Chamomilla Tablets: I’m planning on doing a post soon on natural teething remedies since it’s something that I’ve had lots of experience with in the last year and a half. But I thought I’d mention two remedies here that I think every mom should have on hand. Hyland’s Colic Tablets are great for when the baby’s stomach is full of air from nursing too fast, etc. We’ve also found them pretty effective for teething pain too, if you don’t have other options available. And I started using Hyland’s Chamomilla Tablets after the FDA took the Teething Tablets off the market (don’t get me started on that though!). Chamomilla is the main “ingredient” in the Teething Tablets (and in the Colic ones too) and seems to work pretty well for teething pain and the general irritability associated with teething.
Sippy cup update: Not that any of you were particularly interested in our sippy cup saga, but I’ve found a couple other good toddler cups that I thought I’d briefly share about. We loved the Thermos sippy cup we bought for Cedar, but after about a year or so, it started to get moldy in places that we couldn’t clean. I’m all for buidling kids’ immune systems, but I didn’t really want Cedar regularly drinking out of something with black mold in it! We ended up getting Thermos’ next size up from his old one and taking the inside valve out of it. Because of that, it’s no longer leak-proof, but it also is much easier to clean. And then, on a friend‘s suggestion, we also tried the EIO Glass Kids Cup. If a toddler has been used to a normal sippy cup that regulates water flow a bit more, this one is a little hard to get used to (there’s no valve at all, just a slit for water to come out of), but Cedar is getting the hang of it. We especially love that one for smoothies since it’s very easy to clean and the thicker nature of the smoothie slows down the flow a little bit.
Well, there you have it! Some new baby things we’ve discovered since having two. Do share some of your favourites as well…