It’s absolutely amazing just how much STUFF you accumulate when you have a baby.  I feel like I’m constantly battling with about a million stuffed animals and endless piles of cute, ruffle-ly, pink clothes.  Since we live in about 900 square feet with two adults, one baby, and two kitty cats everything in our space needs to be useful in order for us to have it around.  I’m constantly editing and getting rid of things that we no longer need.  So, as I’m sure that you can imagine, I’m pretty picky about what baby items are allowed to stay in our home.  Here’s my list of our favourite baby items (so far…):

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TOYS & PLAYTIME

Sophie the Giraffe.  I’m sure that you know who Sophie is, even if you don’t have a baby.  Sophie is EVERYWHERE.  But now I understand why.  She’s easy to grab, makes noise, and has a bunch of different parts which are super fun to chew on/stick in your mouth.  I’m sure that if you’re pregnant somebody will buy you a Sophie, and it will become your baby’s favourite toy.

O-ball.  I love these things!  They come in many different shapes and sizes, but I find them all great.  They’re super easy for a baby to grab onto.

Jumperoo.  We have this one, but really, they’re all  pretty much the same.  I love the jumperoo rather than an exersaucer since Olivia LOVES to jump around in it.  It’s like an exersaucer and jolly jumper all rolled into one!

BOTTLES & FEEDING

Dr. Brown’s natural flow glass bottles.  To be honest, these are the only bottles that I have used, so I really don’t have anything to compare them to.  That being said, however, I still think they’re great.  I’m a huge fan of the glass bottles, and I also really love the fact that they “feature an internal vent system that: helps preserve vitamins C, A, & E by minimizing oxidation of breast milk and formula; provides positive-pressure vacuum-free feeding similar to breastfeeding; and helps reduce colic, spit-up, burping and gas by eliminating negative pressure and air bubbles.”  Maybe this is just a great marketing strategy, but Olivia has never really had a problem with spit-up, burping, or gas.  And that makes me happy.

Nursing pillow.  My sister-in-law bought me a great nursing pillow and we’ve gotten so much use out of it.  I’ve used it for breast-feeding, bottle feeding (so does Hubby!), tummy time, and floor play time.  It’s been GREAT!

Boon grass drying rack.  I love this thing.  It’s small enough to not take up too much counter space, but large enough to dry four bottles and my breast pump.  We got the all-white one and it doesn’t look odd on our counter.  I’ve even used it for drying Hubby’s whiskey glasses, so I think that this will stick around even after we’re no longer using bottles.

SLEEPING

Swaddle-Me Adjustable Infant Wrap.  We used these FOREVER.  Like, until Olivia was too strong and the velcro no longer kept her contained.  They were a lifesaver.  Sure, they look a little like a baby straight jacket (which they kind of are), but they really help with the startle reflex and they allowed Olivia (and us!) to have many hours of consecutive sleep.

Aiden and Anais bamboo swaddle blankets. These. Are. Amazing.  Once Olivia was too strong for the Swaddle-Me (see above) we started swaddling with these.  They’re big so you don’t need to even really know how to “properly” swaddle, you can just kind of wrap them around the baby a couple times and they’ll stay put.  They’re also really versatile.  We use them during sunny days to shade Olivia’s delicate skin from the sun, and they’re so breathable and light that she doesn’t get too hot.  I like the bamboo ones as they’re so much softer than the regular ones.

Sleepsacks
.  Once Olivia was too strong for any more swaddling (and her startle reflex calmed down a bit), we started putting her  to bed in a sleepsack.  It’s like a wearable blanket so it keeps her warm without having a loose blanket in the crib.  We currently have two, a Halo Organic cotton one and I recently bought a bamboo Aiden and Anais one for those warm summer nights.

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MISCELLANEOUS

Ergo Baby Carrier.  The only thing that I love more than this carrier is the fact that Hubby uses it more than I do.  It’s comfortable, doesn’t take up a lot of space, and super easy to use.  Plus it sits the baby in a position that is good for her hips (unlike the Bjorn).

Moby Wrap.  I NEVER thought that this type of wrap would be good for me.  But I ended up LOVING it.  I’m finding that I’m not using is as much now that Olivia is getting bigger (and heavier), but I love it for the first three months.  It was a lifesaver on those days where she just wanted to be held.  It allowed her to snuggle close to me and for me to get things done around the house (and even go to the washroom!).

Our stroller.  I knew that I wanted a good stroller, but I also knew that I didn’t want to spend hundreds and hundreds (even thousands) of dollars on one.  I ended up being a second-hand one and buying a new fabric set.  So we basically got a brand new stroller for about $400.  We went with the Bugaboo Frog (which is now discontinued), but there are a lot of similar ones out there that I’m sure are just as good.  The ONLY thing that I don’t really like about our stroller is the fact that the under-seat storage isn’t very big.  But I love that it’s so light, easy to manoeuvre, looks pretty, and didn’t cost us a crazy amount of money.

Hydrasense Nasal Aspirator.  In Olivia’s four short months of life she’s already battled a cold and bronchitis.  During those tough periods I wanted to do anything I could to help her.  Her poor little nose was so stuffed up so I ended up trying saline drops and a nasal aspirator.  This thing worked wonders!  It’s kind of gross to SUCK SNOT OUT OF ANOTHER PERSON’S NOSE, but it’s got a filter so nothing actually goes into your mouth.  It helped a lot with her stuffy nose.  She didn’t like it, but it was easy to use and did the job waaaay better than the useless bulb syringe.

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