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Thursday, January 26, 2012

mama must haves.

with finn's first birthday fast approaching, i decided to take a look back at the past year and the products that i have found the most essential.

when finn was two weeks old i wrote this post on what my favorite products were so far.  a lot of them still hold true (i still live with my camelback water bottle).  but here is my updated mama must have list, after almost a year of mama-ing.  most are for real necessities.  towards the end it gets a little bit fun.

1) the medela pump in style.
i have a wonderful friend who lent me hers so i didn't have to buy one! 
those suckers are pricey! (pun intended). 
okay, so let's be honest- it's not that stylish.   but this thing was and is still a lifesaver. 
i went back to work at the shop a couple of days a week when finn was just four weeks old and it's because of this pump that i have been able to still be breastfeeding.
the double pump really is the way to go.  it's a lot harder to get the hang of with just a single.
in the beginning it was a little tough... i had to kind of trick myself and look at pictures of the baby and imagine waterfalls... you know kind of like when you're little and you can't pee in the public bathroom and your mom has to run the water in the faucet for you to help get things moving? same deal.  but after a week with double pump it was no problemo.  i highly recommend it.  i still use it when i'm at work to pump finn's milk for the next day. 
i also now have a lot of empathy for dairy cows. 

2) the ergo baby carrier.
i went through every possible type of baby carrier and this one is my favorite.  if we ever have another baby i will just buy the infant insert and use this one the whole way through.  it's very versatile and it absolutely saves your back like no other carrier does.  finn feels like he weighs half as much when he's in it.  it washes well, it folds up relatively small, and it's easy to put on.  it's extremely convenient for shopping or outdoor activities.  but beyond that, if you have a fussy baby this thing is like magic.  when finn was in the midst of his three months of nonstop ear infections i used it all day every day.  i would have been lost without it.  it's one of the most expensive baby things i ever bought, and it was worth every penny.

3) the snap 'n go.
we did not go the traditional "travel system" route.  i bought finn's car seat on craig's list and my mom got me the snap 'n go as a shower gift.  i absolutely love it.  it is so small and lightweight but it has a huge basket underneath that fits lots of stuff (i honestly would go grocery shopping with finn in the snap 'n go and could fit all my groceries underneath!) and it has convenient cup holders and a little compartment for your cell phone.  it's so compact and you don't feel like you're taking up the whole aisle at the store with your big baby caravan.  winner.

4) bumgenius 4.0 cloth diapers and lionheart cloth wipes and wipes warmer.
we are still cloth diapering finn and loving it.  the bumgenius cloth diapers really have been awesome.  they are growing with him great and sheesh, disposables are expensive.  we've been using the same 15 cloth diapers for almost a year and they look as good as new.  i have no doubt that they will carry us all the way through potty training days.  billy has become a huge proponent of cloth diapering as well, and he was a big skeptic in the beginning.  it really is just as easy as using disposables.
the lionheart wipes are great too.  they fray in the dryer but i just trim the edges.  i use the cloth wipes for everything.  they are just as great for dusting or wiping your countertops as they are for baby bum bums.  they are also good for wiping sticky baby hands and faces or spills on clothes.  i use them constantly.  they come with a cute little "recipe" book on different mixes... i like being able to make my own batches of wipe soap with olive oil, lavendar oil, bronners, etc.  you soak the cloth wipes in your mix and then wring them out and fold them up in the wipes warmer so they're ready to go when you need them.

5) the planetwise wet bag.
on that same note, i have two wet bags that i use all the time.  the bigger one that i linked to is the one that is in finn's room and i toss all of his wet diapers in until laundry day.  the bag is great at containing smells too.  it washes very well.  i have this smaller bag that i keep in my purse for travel.  beyond storing wet dipes on the go, it's also great for wet swimsuits or outfits that got leaked on, even yucky bibs.

6) good night sleep tight.
as mentioned in previous blogs, this is the sleep book we used to help sleep coach finn.  my wish is that everyone else has magic babies that sleep perfectly, but in the event that you do not, and you one day find yourself slightly more concerned with dropping your mug of coffee than you are with dropping your baby, perhaps turn to this book. 

7) dr. brown's glass bottles
i have four 4 oz bottles and two 8 oz bottles and it's been plenty.  they are the bottles finn uses on thursdays and fridays with his babysitter and on saturdays home with dad.  i have tried other bottles with him but he only likes these.  the quality is great and although i find all of the pieces somewhat tedious to wash, it certainly helps with air flow and gas bubble prevention.  so it's worth it.

8) follow that bird.
i have mentioned this sesame street video before.  it is a life safer.  it fascinates finn and it buys me time to get ready in the mornings.  he doesn't sit through the whole video, but there is an option to just play the songs in the movie.  waylon jennings sings one of them!  in other words, billy watches it a lot too.

9) timex originals camper watch
billy got me this watch for christmas.  i have never worn a watch, but started to find one necessary when i was trying to get finn on a schedule, because i am terrible at keeping track of time.  i like this one.  i wear it all the time now. 

10) rex and goliath free range red.
what says "i'm a tired mom" better than a bottle of cheap red wine?  haha, seriously though we like this wine! don't let the bargain basement price fool you, it's delicious!

there you have it.  my little mama must have list.  i should also put billy at the top of it really, because i certainly couldn't do it without him, but that goes without saying.  alright mamas, time to dish on your must haves now! :)

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