22 May 2013

ahoy, discoveries! vol. 10 [newborn edition]

I have kept a small person alive for more than a month. Does that entitle me to have opinions on baby things? Yes? Well, here we go.

First of all, babies have a tendency to make messes at inopportune times. Like you're in the middle of changing them and they decide to pee without a diaper on. Well, for moments like that, you have handy dandy changing pad liners: toss the dirty one in the hamper and switch it for a clean one. Smart.

Want to give that messy kid a bath? You need Gerber's washcloths. They are soft but thin, exactly right for the small nooks and crannies on a chubby baby. A more substantial washcloth wouldn't be as effective.

Everybody registers for Aden + Anais blankets, but I would actually recommend these instead: Bambino Land organic swaddle blankets. (I got mine at half price on Zulily, so keep your eyes peeled.) They are delightfully fluffy. They also have a bit of stretch and are larger than Aden + Anais, which makes swaddling a cranky, flailing baby much easier.

And speaking of swaddling, The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp has been a lifesaver. I read it before Ellie was born and it made perfect sense-- recreating the womb environment, comforting baby rather than trying to make her "independent," looking to history and tradition instead of new and improved ideas. I tried his technique when she became inexplicably fussy and . . . magic. No more crazy fits of screaming.

I love the Ergo so much I can't even say. Allows me to weed the garden, wash dishes, fold laundry, and go grocery shopping with two hands and a contented baby. On fussy days when she doesn't want to nap by herself, I pop her into the Ergo and she drifts off while nestled against me. My back doesn't hurt either. (I must say that Ellie is definitely a cuddler; if your baby is not, she might not like it as much.)

We have the infant insert, and while it's nice to boost Ellie up higher on my chest, it isn't truly necessary for her. However, if any of our future little ones are smaller than this Amazon baby, the insert will be perfect.

Sometimes, of course, I do have to put Ellie down. Bouncy seat to the rescue! This one is made by Fisher-Price; it's sturdy but lightweight, cute (no garish colors), and easy to tote around the house. Ellie likes it. She watches me in the kitchen, sits on the table while we eat, and hangs out when Mommy and Daddy's arms need a break.

I suppose there isn't a lot of variation between pacifiers, but we have these (I picked them up at TJ Maxx one day, attracted by the cute design and the "natural" way they are supposedly designed). They are extremely useful when Ellie needs something to amuse herself.

Baby fingernails grow fast and double as dangerous weapons. I like these nail scissors a lot: they are precise but safe. And the duck logo is adorable.

Clothes. Well, basically you can never have enough of these basic onesies, then cute pants and a cardigan to dress it up. Don't forget socks that are actually molded to fit around tiny ankles and chubby feet, rather than silly, shapeless foot mittens. Little Mouse has striped ones, but these in argyle are precious.

Ellie is a stomach sleeper. So when she wakes up at night and starts yelling for the milks, she can move. Once those little legs get going, as Jared says, "She migrates!" I have found her turned 180 degrees from where she began, halfway across the crib, even scooched up into a corner. Crib bumpers have saved her from whacking her noggin many a time. We have the Harper set from Pottery Barn, and I like it not only because of the pretty pattern, but also the very firm material. I never worry about her squishing her face up into it and suffocating.

Also on the crib front, I would recommend these organic cotton sheets. They have very deep gussets (so they fit tightly on the mattress, no slipping at the corners) and are very soft, which is especially important to me because Ellie does sleep on her stomach and has her face pressed up against the sheet all night!


  1. One of my biggest disappointments with my baby was that he was NOT a cuddler! He hated the sling/carrier unless he was moving and even then it was only for a little while. And I'm totally with you on the little washcloths. They work so much better than the big ones.

  2. I think you have learned all the big secrets already. ;-)