Our goal is to provide information, ideas and support for working women who are also full-time mothers.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Must haves from the convenience queen.

I personally, love the gadgets. I love anything and everything that will make my life as a working mom easier. Unfortunately when I had my first child, NONE of my friends were working mothers, and some of their needs were different than mine, so over time, I discovered "my" list of must haves. I will try to do them justice:


Carseat: A good lightweight 5 point infant carrier that will last at least 6 months. I prefered to get the seat and the Snap-n-Go rather than a full size stroller. I used our umbrella stroller when she was awake (long time spent in a carseat isn't good for baby, so take them out as much as you can!) I hated the travel system I had with my first child. For my second baby we had the Graco Safe Seat and it was a GREAT carseat.

Swing: Full size or travel size, this was a must in our house. My kids both loved to be rocked, and there's only so much rocking a mommy can do when she's cleaning up dinner too!

Breast Pump: If you are nursing, the Medela Pump in Style is a great take to work pump, and it comes in a backpack. Since I was pumping a lot, I also had a Medela Symphony that I rented.

Boppy Pillow: For nursing or formula feeding, this is a must! Or a pillow like it, but I loved my Boppy and my 18 month old still uses hers.

Swaddle Blankets: I got a few from the hospital but when it became clear I had babies that LOVED being swaddled, the Miracle Blanket became my best friend! It swaddled my daughter until 8 months.

2 diapers bags: 1 stays in the car, stocked with everthing but the kitchen sink. Then a little one I can throw on my back with a couple diapers a snack and pacifiers to run into a store!

Sling: I loved my Peanut Shell and New Native carriers for the first year. They are easy, compact, and very very comfortable.

Bumbo Seat: my daughter loved this seat.

For Daycare: I love the idea of sending a disposable camera to school, so that your daycare provider can take pictures of your kid(s) during the day. It's wonderful to see them!

Older Babies
Again, a good carseat. Convertibles that have higher height and weight limits (look for high top slots) will ensure your child gets the MOST use of out their convertible seat. And allows them to rear-face longer (which is safer, for more info go to http://www.carseatdata.org. )

Umbrella Stroller: I have a double and a single, which is nice when I go out with only 1 of my two kids. The Chicco, Inglesina lines are a less expensive alternative to the well known Maclarens, and they hold up really well!


Tuesday, March 27, 2007

"Must Have Baby Items"

I think a lot of "must-have" baby items vary from baby to baby. Each kid is different and has different needs. When you're about to become a parent for the first time there's a certain amount of pressure to buy the right things and have certain things. But the truth is, a lot of this stuff can wait until after baby (your baby's personality may not require it) or simply not be bought at all. Here's a few things I've discovered as the mom of two.

What should every parent splurge on before baby comes?
  1. A high-quality carseat. There's no price on safety.
  2. A good digital camera and video camera. You can't get those moments back!
  3. If you are going to be breastfeeding--get a Boppy pillow (or some other specially designed support pillow) and bring it with you to the hospital.
What should you wait until after baby comes to buy?
  1. Bottles. You need to buy SOME but don't go nuts. Buy a pack of the ones you'd like to try. Just remember that Baby may have a different opinion and want a completely different kind.
  2. Miracle Blanket. Not all kids need to be swaddled. My first one didn't, but my 2nd one did. And when she started wriggling out of her receiving blanket swaddle, the Miracle Blanket was a lifesaver!
  3. Baby Bjorn. My first child didn't care for being carried this way. Of course I had the cheapo version of the Bjorn which really hurt my shoulders and back so that might've made a difference. My 2nd child wanted to be held and carried all the time. I was reluctant to use my old front carrier because it was so uncomfortable. A friend loaned me her Bjorn and it made all the difference in the world. I carried baby everywhere in this thing and my back was fine.

What can be skipped to save some money?

  1. Highchair. We bought the fancy highchair for our first child. We have a small dining area and the thing took up SO much room. I was so happy to move her into a booster seat. It straps to one of our dining room chairs and can be used with a tray or just pushed up to the table. When our 2nd one came alone, I did not want to pull that highchair out of storage. We tried her in the booster seat from day 1 (six months old). It worked great and took up much less room. If you have a small dining area like we do, go straight to boosters and forget the highchair!
  2. Changing table. Some people love theirs. But think twice before shelling out the big bucks on one of these. With both kids we actually used it AS a changing table for maybe the first 6-8 weeks of their lives. After that we just changed them on a floor or couch or bed. The changing table was just a storage place for diapers, wipes, etc. Now we have this thing to get rid of... I wish we would've spent the money on an extra dresser instead. We could have used it for diapers early on and clothes now.
  3. Umbrella stroller. Again, this is just me. Some people love the convenience of the umbrella stroller. But personally, I never used ours. The regular stroller folds up almost as compactly AND it has cup holders, a tray, a storage basket for the diaper bag, etc.

Happy shopping!

Monday, March 26, 2007

Must Have Baby Items!

My "baby" is almost four years old now. Man time flies. Anyway, I'm having a hard time remembering the things that helped me the most during his infanthood. Memory is a tough thing when you are in multi-tasking overload as a working mom!!!

Here are a few things I felt were useful:

camera -- take millions of pics - time goes by fast (see paragraph above!)

Baby swing -- if they make them now where they plug in that would be better. We used TONS of batteries in the one we had. It was the only place he would sleep most of the time.

Playtex bottles with disposable inserts -- made bottle feeding easier since you tossed the insert and didn't have to wash inside those long & thin bottles.

Something I'll buy if I ever do it again: co-sleeper baby bed. I ended up co-sleeping (still do) with my son and I wish I had started that way from the beginning.

Sense of Humor -- babies and sleep deprivation make you crazy! Try to laugh....lots! :)