Must-Haves 6-8 Months Old!

This post is about our experience with our 6,7 and 8 month old – what worked for us may not work for you, and what I deem a necessity may seem like a luxury for you (or vice versa!). To see all the posts in the ‘Must-Haves’ Category, click here

Bumbo Seat – When Eleni was much smaller, it was fun to sit her up in her Bumbo and watch her observe the world from a different angle. However, with my especially independent and inquisitive child that luxury did not last very long! Gone are the days where I can sit her in it and turn away – she has been known to pop right out of it trying to get to the nearest toy. So now, we use the Bumbo in our very own way. Since Eleni has grown out of her baby bath my husband had the genius idea of suctioning her Bumbo to the floor of the bath (you just have to push down real hard – without the baby already sitting in it) and she loves to splash about in it. It’s nice for me too because I’m not struggling to keep her from slipping and sliding all over the place. (Please note that it was not designed for this purpose and I cannot be held responsible for any mishaps!)

Baby Hair Clips/Hair ties – If I only had a dollar for every time someone commented on my baby’s hair. She was born with a lot of hair and never lost it. It has just kept growing and growing and I absolutely love it! I even braided it the other day. While I knew when I was pregnant that I would buy plenty of hair accessories for my baby girl, I didn’t imagine it would be out of necessity so soon! Eleni’s hair is constantly in her eyes – enter hair clips and hair ties! Often I will pull her hair into a pony tail (or a ‘sprig’ as her Grandaddy calls it) on the top of her head. I love these fabric hair ties that pull her hair less than regular ones. I found some at Walmart, but I’m sure any drugstore would have them. I also use a lot of hair clips – you can find really cute ones with bows, flowers, anything! The ‘snap’ ones are really good too.

Eddie Bauer Classic Wooden High Chair – This has been an absolute LIFESAVER now that Eleni is big enough to sit comfortably in it. We’ve found ourselves scooting this chair all over the dining room/kitchen when I’m cleaning or cooking. I put soft toys on the tray, or give her a wafer or a carrot stick to chew on and she will sit happily for 10 minutes or more as long as she can still see/hear me. She sits happily while I cook our dinner and when Chris and I eat it, she sits happily in the mornings while we’re waking up and sipping on our coffee – she is just so comfortable in this chair! I am equally comfortable leaving her sitting in it – even when she’s being energetic and a bit wild – because it is so sturdy (thanks to the real wood). I chose this one because I know it is sturdy, I know it will last for more than one child, and I chose a gender-neutral pattern for the cushions just in case we have a boy next. Another feature that I love about this high chair is the detachable snack tray and the actual tray underneath – both of which are dishwasher safe, and also the little shelf at the back in which I keep some of her bowls, bibs and spoons. So handy!

Winter ‘Bundle Up’ Clothes – We have had unusually cold temperatures this year, and a lot of snow too. I absolutely love winter and cold weather, but I had to give some thought on how to keep my baby comfortable yet warm at the same time. Our lovely friend Laurel, who is an absolute gem, bought Eleni a sweet winter jacket that has been such a blessing! It is waterproof and blocks the wind, and it has a big fleeced hood with fur trim – so cute and so practical! The other thing that Eleni has worn on chilly days which is not quite as bulky, so better if we’re driving somewhere and she has to be in her carseat, is a full body suit which I bought in South Africa (in the middle of summer – bizarre!). It is fluffy and adorable. She looks like the abominable snowman and I love it! Last the list of things to mention is a good hat (we lose tons of heat through our head, especially as babies) and a good pair of boots to keep those little tootsies warm. We were fortunate enough to have a matching set passed down to us. Both the hat and the boots are from Baby Gap and they are fleece-lined and gorgeous!

 

Netflix – Oh, this is going to make me sound like a terrible mother in the world of PPPs (Perfect Pinterest Parents) but let’s be honest, we all do it. And if you don’t yet, you probably will. It might not be Netflix, but you will find whatever it is that makes your child sit still without you for a minute so that you can go pee/put on make up/grab a bite to eat…I promise you, you will find something and you will use it. Now I am not a fan of plopping your child in front of the TV for hours but I really don’t think that 15 minutes here and there is going to do my baby any harm, and if it helps me to regain what’s left of my sanity for the day then I’m all for it! Her attention span at this age is not that expansive anyway. I am also quite adamant that even at this age, the shows that she does watch need to be educational. Eleni loves to sit in her high chair and watch Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood which is an updated version of Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood and it is full of sweet lessons relevant to toddlers from potty training to going to the doctor to sharing toys with friends. While she is still too young to understand any of that, it makes me feel good.

Plum Little Yums – Eleni LOVES these! Even though she mostly plays with them, she’s learning to suck on the wafers and get some of the flavor and texture in her mouth. Eleni has always preferred finger food to me feeding her pureed fruits and veggies (although we are still pursuing that avenue as well) and so these are perfect. In the beginning I had to watch her quite closely but now I feel like she has somewhat of a handle on how they work (ie she doesn’t shove them down her throat!) I love that these are affordable, organic and packed full of flavor.

Boogie Wipes – Eleni has had a couple colds/sniffly moments in her 8 month old existence. The first time she got a cold we were so worried, but now we’re quite used to it. I love these Boogie Wipes because they allow me to wipe her nose/face without worrying that I’m going to irritate her skin with a normal wipe or make it raw with a tissue. They are gentle saline wipes, and you can also get them infused with menthol which helps to clear up noses too.

Paci Wipes – These have been an absolute LIFESAVER. Eleni only started using a paci religiously a month ago, and since then I cannot tell you how many times they have been thrown/dropped on the floor! These wipes are safe enough to use on anything that Eleni is going to put in her mouth – pacifiers, toys, bottles etc.

Toys: We are having so much fun now that Eleni is old enough to play with her toys! Not to mention the fact that it is so nice for me to be able to leave her on the floor (on a big fluffy blanket, since we have wooden floors) and get on with chores while she plays happily to herself. These are three of our absolute favorite toys that she plays with at home. When we go out I always pack her Sophie Giraffe, her soft ‘My First Doll’, and at least one set of teething play keys. 

Fisher-Price Musical Lion Walker – Although Eleni is not quite at the stage where she can use this to walk behind, since she got it for Christmas she has played with it every single day! She loves to sit in front of it and push all the buttons, and she’s figured out that if you rock it back and forth it plays a song or two! I can’t wait to see how much fun she has when she’s learning to walk too.

Activity Cube – The activity cube that we have is Playful Basics from Little Tikes, and Eleni absolutely loves it! I bought at a very cheap price from a consignment event (which, by the way, is where I get all of her clothes) and she loves to sit there and explore. I’m so proud that she’s already learnt how to spin, push, shake all the little parts on it!

Fisher-Price ‘Go Baby Go’ Crawl Along Drum Roll – I swear, Eleni is going to be a drummer. This is another toy that I got at a consignment event and Eleni beats on it like it’s going out of style! The drums light up and play different beats, and they also fold together to roll around on the floor.

Must-Haves 6-8 Months Old!

Must-Haves – 3 Months Old!

 This post is about our experience with our 3 (or 4) month old – what worked for us may not work for you, and what I deem a necessity may seem like a luxury for you (or vice versa!)

 

Vulli Sophie Giraffe Teether – Baby E absolutely LOVES this! It’s the perfect size for her to hold onto, and her favorite thing to chew on is Sophie’s nose! One time we thought we’d dropped Sophie in Walmart and absolutely panicked (we found her under the front seat of the car, eventually) because E loves her so much and we couldn’t imagine life without her! Definitely a must-have as those little toothy-pegs starts to push on baby gums!

vulli vulli giraffe leni

Dr. Brown’s 8oz bottles – Up until 3 months old we were using the 4oz bottles which were awesome for our little guzzler (she gulps down her milk!) but now that she’s bigger (actually she’s 4 months at the time of this post) and sometimes eating more than 4oz per feed, it’s so much easier to use big bottles! And something about these ones make her eat even slower which really helps with gas problems!

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Baby books – This is such a fun age to read books with her. We’ve read to E since she was born but at this age she can actually focus and enjoy looking at the pictures. Her favorites are the Hello Animals & Hello Bugs black and white ones (babies love harsh contrast) and the ones with pictures of other babies.

animals bugs

Stroller – Since Baby E was born in the summer, it was honestly too hot (or too rainy!) to take her out very often so we have only started using the stroller regularly in the last month or so. She loves to be outside and intently watches and listens to everything! Not to mention getting her outside in the stroller helps to give her a good dose of vitamin D, which my doctor tells me is the only thing that’s slightly lacking in exclusively breastfed babies. Since I don’t want to give her anything other than breastmilk (such as vitamin D drops), we try and get her in natural sunlight as much as possible. We have the EvenFlo Featherlite Stroller/Carseat combo and absolutely love it!

Baby Banz – These are a must-have for my family specifically, and you can see my product review for these awesome earmuffs here.

Boppy Pillow – We had been using our boppy exclusively for nursing up until she hit about 3 months, and now it has an additional use: to help her practice sitting up! She loves being tucked into it’s U-shaped padding and playing with a block or chewing on her Sophie Giraffe. Super cute, and useful if I need to pump but she’s still awake. She’s usually content to sit there on the bed while I’m busy!

Sleep sacks – See my post on sleep sacks here.

Car mirror – This has been a must-have since day 1, but somehow it got left off of the Newborn list! I absolutely love the fact that I don’t have to turn all the way around when I’m driving to check on the baby. Just one glance in the mirror and I can see everything – I can see if she’s fussing because something’s wrong or if it’s just because she’s sleepy, I can see if she’s awake or asleep – everything! A handy feature on ours (Brica Day & Night Light Mirror) is the remote control that I keep up front with me which switches on music (quite pleasant music too!) or a light so I can see her in the dark. Rather over the top (or so I thought, before I had her) but so handy.

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Fisher Price Rainforest Jumparoo & Fisher Price Rainforest Melodies/Lights Deluxe Gym – These two items have provided SO much entertainment for Baby E and provided some good time for Mama to do housework/pump milk too! My grandfather bought them both for us and now that she’s older it is such a delight to see how much fun she has. The gym/playmat is great for her to roll around on and the Jumparoo helps her to strengthen her legs and learn about cause and effect (among other things). We have a very active baby so it’s nice to get some of that energy out! A definite must-have in my book!

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Must-Haves – 3 Months Old!

Baby Product Review – Baby Banz Earmuffs

Being musicians and heavily involved in various events as well as experiencing relatively loud contemporary music on a Sunday morning at church, this product was an absolute must-have for us with Baby E. I haven’t labeled it as such because some of you may not need these at all!

Baby Banz Mini Earmuffs
Baby Banz Mini Earmuffs

Babies are extra sensitive to sound and their hearing can be damaged a lot easier than grown ups, so with our lifestyle and the fact that we like as much as possible to take Baby E with us rather than have someone babysit her at home we knew we had to find a way to protect her little ears! Chris’ hearing is damaged from many years of going to concerts with his dad (who is also a musician) as a child, so we want to prevent that as much as we can with E!

After doing some research, I decided to go with Baby Banz. They don’t cut out the noise altogether, they just reduce the levels of noise that are harmful to hearing. The size we bought were the Mini’s, as babies 3 months and older can safely wear those. She wears them on the tightest setting so they will grow with her. The price was extremely reasonable ($30) and they are extremely comfortable – they don’t squeeze her head too tight and are nicely cushioned. She doesn’t really seem to notice that she’s wearing them. In fact, the first time we put them on her she sat on the stage during band rehearsal with monitors and amps blaring, right in between a pair of subs and fell straight to sleep in no time. We couldn’t be more pleased with them and recommend them to everyone who feels the need to protect their kids’ hearing (they would work great on a loud boat, at the shooting range, various sporting events etc).

Baby E during band rehearsal on the stage
Baby E during band rehearsal on the stage

 

Baby Product Review – Baby Banz Earmuffs

Baby Must-Have – Sleep Sacks!

Now that Baby E is 12 weeks old, I am trying to get her used to sleeping in her crib for nap time so that when we decide to transition her into her nursery (which will be a while, because it ‘s on the other side of the house) she will already be familiar with her surroundings. Along with that, I am on a mission to get her used to sleep sacks versus blankets. So far she has been sleeping in her Fisher Price Newborn Rock n Play Sleeper (see my review of it and other newborn sleeping must-haves here) with blankets on her. Since she’s so near to my bedside I’ve not been worried about her getting smothered. However, when she’s far away from me in her nursery, I just don’t feel comfortable covering her up with blankets and not being able to just look over and check on her. The solution: sleep sacks! We just started using these last week when I bought some second hand at a local consignment event, Duck Duck Goose. She absolutely loves them! We only use them at night (another thing that she can associate with bedtime when we’re winding down) and I love that she can’t kick them off so her little toes don’t get cold! She wears a long sleeved onesie underneath. Honestly, I kind of wish I had a sleep sack too!

 

Baby Must-Have – Sleep Sacks!

Must-Haves – First 8 Weeks with a Newborn (Mommy Care)

As an overly organized and very eager mom-to-be, when I was pregnant I did extensive research on what everyone was buying and what we really needed vs what was more of a luxury. This post is about our experience during the first 8 weeks of life with a newborn – what worked for us may not work for you, and what I deem to be a luxury may end up being a necessity for you!

This is really important – I learnt very quickly how easy it is to ignore yourself and your needs while you’re in the midst of the craziness of trying to care for a newborn! I was so blessed to have an extremely easy labor and delivery experience so there was a very minimal amount of healing that needed to happen, that’s why I’m not recommending things like ‘padsicles’ etc because while I’m sure those are awesome, I did not need to use them!

Maternity/nursing pajamas – Chris’ grandmother gave us some money while I was pregnant and I knew that I had to indulge and buy myself a treat: soft, comfortable pajamas. The ones that I found were on Motherhood Maternity were so awesome (unfortunately they are not for sale anymore so I can’t link to them!) I absolutely love them. I didn’t want anything frumpy-looking (when you look frumpy, you act frumpy) and I wanted to be able to wear them while I was pregnant, in the hospital, and nursing at home too.

Maternity/Nursing pajamas from Motherhood Maternity
Maternity/Nursing pajamas from Motherhood Maternity

Nursing Bras – I actually bought some nursing bras to wear while I was pregnant as well, since I didn’t want to spend money on regular bras that I ‘d only be wearing for a few months! The first two I bought were from Motherhood Maternity and were really cute. I had put off buying nursing bras because all the ones I had seen before were so ugly and old lady-ish! Thankfully, Motherhood had some lovely lacy ones so I was very pleased. Once I had Baby E and my milk officially ‘came in’ I obviously had to buy some bigger bras so I went to Target and found some that were still cute but much cheaper (I got one for $18 and one for $16 on clearance). The key to buying nursing bras is to find one that is not under-wire (as I hear that is bad for your supply) but still provides enough support! The only problem with the Target ones is that they don’t keep their shape as well as my other ones but for that price, it really doesn’t matter if they don’t last very long.

Post-Partum Support Band – The thing that I struggled with the most post-partum was the back pain and overall tenderness around my mid-section. As soon as I got home I knew I had to find something that offered some amount of support for my back and belly. At the time I didn’t think about the added benefit of the band helping to shrink the belly-pooch but I’m telling you, it worked!!! I wore the band everyday for about two weeks and then every now and then for another week after that and I have regained my shape so quickly! My stomach is back to flat (don’t get me wrong, there is still a good amount of stretchy skin and its not toned at all since I haven’t done any exercise) and I got my waist back too. I will not have another baby without one of these in the future. I am aware that you can buy belly bands for $80, sometimes $100, but my mother in law found one for me at (surprise!) Motherhood Maternity for $25 and it was exactly what I needed. Don’t spend a whole lot if you don’t have to!

Post Partum Support Band
Post Partum Support Band

Lindt Chocolate – Or any treat that tickles your fancy. So I know that everyone is all concerned about losing the pregnancy weight and blah blah blah. GIVE YOURSELF A TREAT for goodness’ sake! You just either popped a human being out of your body or underwent major surgery and are now having to keep the thing alive and healthy. Have some chocolate. Or some ice-cream. Or anything else your heart desires at the time. I’m not saying that you need to over-indulge, I’m all about healthy eating and am proud to say that 10 weeks post partum I am back to my pre-pregnancy weight. The thing is, it does a weary new mama’s heart good to sit, even if just for a minute or two, and enjoy something that is only hers. For me, it’s Lindt chocolate. Being non-American, I am a chocolate snob. I will not eat Hershey’s unless I absolutely have to. While I was pregnant it was Lindt dark chocolate with sea salt, now that it’s almost fall I am all about Lindt dark chocolate with caramel AND sea salt. What could be more delicious?! Seriously though, it’s like my little reward for having consoled my crying baby after an hour of her having trapped gas. Do it and DON’T feel bad about it.

Lindt Chocolate
Lindt Chocolate

Mommy-time – Once I went back to work (4 hours every morning during the week) my days became more and more crowded with things that needed doing (the main reason I’m trying to become BFF with my CrockPot). That left zero time to spend in the Bible and in prayer, and zero time to relax in silence! So I decided to set my alarm for 5:30am every day. Sometimes I get up at that time, sometimes if we have had a worse night than usual I stay in bed until 6 or 6:30 but regardless, I make sure I am out of bed before my husband and before Baby E. Sometimes she will wake up so I change her, feed her, and lay her in bed beside her sweet daddy and they snuggle and sleep. I wander bleary-eyed to the bathroom, put in my contact-lenses, stagger to the kitchen to turn on the kettle and rinse out the French Press to make coffee. To be honest, the promise of coffee is really what motivates me to actually get out of the bed at that time. As soon as the coffee is made I high-tail it to my comfy chair in the nursery, wrap my dressing gown and a big old blanket around me and settle down with the YouVersion Bible App on my iPhone. Recently I’ve been doing two devotional studies a day. At the moment I am doing one video study by John Piper called Popular Verses and Revealing Jesus with Darlene Zchech. John’s is just a few minutes long per day and he really gives you a new take on some well-known verses – lots of food for though. Darlene’s is peppered with practical tips at pursuing righteousness in your life and making your relationship with God a priority, and on some days it includes songs on YouTube that you can worship along to as well. This is my special time in the mornings with God, and I am fierce about protecting it. I am so blessed to have a husband who is on board with this plan, and if Baby E starts to fuss I know that during this time he will take care of it and I don’t have to get up and tend to her. Uninterrupted time to myself in the morning is one of the greatest gifts I give myself and one of the greatest ways that my husband serves me. Once I’m done, I can then get on with putting dinner in the crockpot or other bits of housework that need to be done. This helps me too as I hate to come home from work to a messy house! It kills me 🙂

Let me know how you take care of yourself as a mom, whether you’re a new mom or have children that are all grown up, I’d love to hear from you! Comment on this post or send me a message.

Must-Haves – First 8 Weeks with a Newborn (Mommy Care)

Must-Haves – First 8 Weeks with a Newborn (Feeding/Nursing)

As an overly organized and very eager mom-to-be, when I was pregnant I did extensive research on what everyone was buying and what we really needed vs what was more of a luxury. This post is about our experience during the first 8 weeks of life with a newborn – what worked for us may not work for you, and what I deem to be a luxury may end up being a necessity for you!

When Baby E arrived, I had planned on nursing exclusively for 6 weeks and then pumping when I returned to work part-time. As it happened, it was very difficult for her to get a good latch on my right side in the first few days and by the time she would have developed a good habit on the left for it to work on the right, I was so full of milk that it overwhelmed her and she still couldn’t nurse on that side! After a few frustrating days and nights, Chris and I went to see a lactation consultant and we tried pumping on the right side – it was incredible! Since that point, I have been nursing about once or twice a day and she takes a bottle with pumped breastmilk the rest of the time. It’s been like that since she was a week old and I have to say, I do not believe in nipple confusion. Baby E nurses, takes a bottle and has a paci (or ‘dummy’) and has not had any trouble switching between the three. I love that pumping my milk means that other people can feed her (if she wakes up at night I change her diaper, and then Chris feeds her while I pump) and that wherever we are I can just pull out a bottle and feed her in public without having to fuss with a nursing cover or feel self-conscious. I do believe that if I had nursed exclusively for 6 weeks like I was planning and only introduced the bottle when I went back to work, it would have been a lot more difficult for her to be away from me and feel settled with whoever is keeping her in the mornings. She would have been so used to that time with me and not familiar with the bottle at all – very difficult! I have to say that if I was a stay-at-home mom, things may have been different. With our current setup though I do feel like I have the best of both worlds – I get to work and pump but I still get the bonding experience of nursing.

Medela Hand Pump – I think everyone is so different, it’s hard to recommend things like this for others but what works for the absolute best is the hand pump instead of the electric one. I have an electric one that I used for a while in the beginning but I have more control with a hand pump and I feel like I get more faster. It is also helpful that if we’re going on a long car ride I can just take my pump and use it in the car if I need to. One particular day that this was handy was when we went to Pigeon Forge, TN for a day of shopping – I pumped on the drive there and halfway through our shopping trip too! Here’s a tip: I forgot the little white ‘membrane’ thing that goes on the inside on that trip and found out that Walmart sells them, thank goodness! So don’t panic if that happens to you, just find a nearby Walmart (they were only $7 too!).

Medela Harmony Hand Pump
Medela Harmony Hand Pump

Boppy Pillow – Whenever I do nurse, this comes in handy like you wouldn’t believe! It provides just the right amount of cushioning and support that Baby E needs. Since I can only do the ‘football position’ on my right side, I love that I don’t need to fool with a bunch of pillows – all I need is my trusty Boppy! This is a must-have for everyone. I have three different pillow cases for it –  I would definitely recommend having at least 2.

Boppy Pillow

Neosporin or Triple Antibiotic Cream – Here’s the thing, everybody swears by Lanolin ointment for sore nipples (I have some by Lansinoh) and I have to go against the grain here and say that I am not a fan. It is pretty thick and gloopy, you have to wipe your fingers after you apply it and it rubs off on your bra/clothes (I still have an oily looking stain on one of my nursing bras)! It’s also pretty pricey. After struggling to get a good latch, especially on my right side, it really made me quite tender and I was so worried that I would crack and bleed like all the horror stories I read when I was pregnant so my lactation consultant actually recommended Neosporin (or any generic brand of triple antibiotic cream) which I never would have thought of! It soaks into the skin really quickly so you don’t have to wipe it off or wash up before you nurse, and it took the tenderness away immediately! I got a couple tubes for a dollar a piece at Dollar Tree and never looked back.

Lansinoh Milk Storage Bags – If you are blessed and have enough of a supply to store milk, these are by far the best storage bags to freeze with. I have never, ever had one break on me and have recently been storing up to 6.5oz per bag! They are reasonably priced and easy to defrost too.

Lansinoh Milk Storage Bags
Lansinoh Milk Storage Bags

Dr. Brown’s Newborn Natural Flow Feeding Set – These are the only bottles we have ever used, so I don’t have anything to compare them with but they have worked wonderfully for us. Since my baby is a true guzzler (she eats very quickly and greedily!) the insert that slows everything down helps so much. At the moment she feeds from the 4oz bottles and I pump into the 8oz bottles.

Dr. Brown's
Dr. Brown’s

Muslins – I don’t know if Americans call them muslins, but that’s what I grew up calling these light, airy, breathable blankets. They are perfect for soaking spit up, wiping dribble and pretty much anything else! We have a set of 4 Aden + Anais muslins, a Laura Ashley one and a couple from Chicca Chicca Boom Boom. The Aden + Anais ones are larger and we also use them to lay over Baby E when it’s cool enough for some kind of covering, but too hot for an actual blanket. I can never have too many since they’re completely multi-use items. I’ve also used the Aden + Anais ones for nursing/pumping covers on occasion (for example, in the car!)

Eleni swaddled and covered in her muslins
Baby E swaddled and covered in her muslins

Let me know what your feeding/nursing must-haves are, whether you’re a new mom or have children that are all grown up, I’d love to hear from you! Comment on this post or send me a message.

Must-Haves – First 8 Weeks with a Newborn (Feeding/Nursing)

Must-Haves – First 8 Weeks with a Newborn (Sleeping)

As an overly organized and very eager mom-to-be, when I was pregnant I did extensive research on what everyone was buying and what we really needed vs what was more of a luxury. This post is about our experience during the first 8 weeks of life with a newborn – what worked for us may not work for you, and what I deem to be a luxury may end up being a necessity for you!

Sleeping:

Fisher Price Comfy Time Bouncer – This is what Baby E slept in for the first 3 weeks of her life! We left the toy attachment off and put in one of those little inserts that are meant for car seats to support her head and she slept so soundly. Since she was little there was no need to strap her in, so we laid down a soft blanket for her too. I think the shape of the chair made her feel snug and safe, while the bassinet at that point was just too roomy. The calming vibrations feature was also a big plus for us – it helped to get her into the habit of putting herself to sleep as I would lay her in there while she was getting sleepy, and the vibrations would soothe her to sleep. Now that she’s older (9 weeks) and more interactive, if she’s happy I’ll put her in the chair and attach the toys and she’ll entertain herself for a good amount of time, leaving me to make the dinner or pump milk or do whatever else needs doing. If we’re going to a friend’s house or if I’m leaving her at someone’s house while I’m at work we’ll take it with us as it’s pretty easy to throw in the car!

Fisher Price Comfy Time Bouncer
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We even took the bouncer to Granny’s camper at the lake!

Fisher Price Rock ‘n Play Sleeper – I found this on a blog somewhere and really liked the look of it.  When Baby E was first born and we were using the bouncer for her to sleep in we didn’t use this one at all. As a newborn (and she was a pretty big newborn – 8.5lbs and 21in!) it seemed to swallow her up a little. Then as she got a little bigger (around 3 weeks) we decided to put her down in it for a nap and it was wonderful! The shape is so perfect as she doesn’t feel like she is totally out in the open, but she can still stretch out pretty well. I think this is a great transitional item to move towards her sleeping in her crib at night. We use this exclusively at night time so that she knows it’s time to sleep and not just nap, and then we occasionally use the bouncer during the day for naps still. It’s been really handy having both of these (the sleeper and the bouncer) so that she can get used to sleeping in different things and places. I L-O-V-E the way that this thing folds up – so handy! Since we have such crazy schedules and just take her along to wherever we’re going, the fact that it’s easy to carry around is a major bonus. Another nice little feature is that if she starts fussing and waving her arms or kicking, it rocks with her movements so she essentially rocks herself back to sleep!

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Baby E in her Rock n Play Sleeper
Fisher Price Rock n Play Sleeper

Swaddle Me by Summer Infant – When we first brought Baby E home, we thoroughly enjoyed swaddling her up in our own blankets/muslins and I actually completely forgot that we even had this! I bought it at a consignment event and put it somewhere in the nursery – out of sight, out of mind! I finally remembered that we had it when she was about 6 weeks old. Although it looks somewhat like a straight jacket, babies absolutely love these! It takes so much less time to put on than wrapping them up yourself and it is much harder to break out of. We only use this at night (again, trying to get her to associate certain things with nighttime vs nap-time) and she on the nights that she has slept without waking up once, it has been when she’s bundled up in this. Some bloggers swear that you need two or three but honestly, one is plenty for us!

Swaddle Me by Summer Infant
Swaddle Me by Summer Infant

Let me know what your sleeping must-haves are, whether you’re a new mom or have children that are all grown up, I’d love to hear from you! Comment on this post or send me a message.

Must-Haves – First 8 Weeks with a Newborn (Sleeping)