Category Archives: Baby

Shopping for our First Car Seat

There is no denying that some decisions are tougher than others for parents. Not only do we have to worry about the safety of our kids, but we also have to worry about the judgement from other parents about the decisions we make! In addition to buying a baby stroller, parents need to consider their child’s first car seat.

I was not too phased about the judgements of other parents ever since the birth of my second child as I felt I was equipped with enough information to make the right decisions for myself. I had a few things in mind when choosing a car seat:

  1. Safety
  2. Convenience
  3. Easy Clean
  4. Price

Lets look at these in a bit more detail…

Safety

I know nearly every parent out there will agree that the most intimidating thing about choosing baby gear is knowing just how safe they are. Of course every product wants to market itself as being the safest but what is actually the safest.

I found independent reviews on safeconvertiblecarseats.com to be a good indication for me, and although the best convertible car seat was not necessarily what I was looking for, it was helpful.

Side impact protection and a 5 point harness were probably the most important things I noticed. Also having the seat face rear for as long as possible pushed up the safety ratings.

Convenience

Convenience probably means something different for all parents. For me it means an easy installation an ability to be adapted to changing situations. I found that meant car seats can be attached to strollers to become a travel system, which you can read more about here.

I knew I needed to balance convenience with safety. I liked the idea of switching a convertible car seat forward facing when my child grows out of their car seat but they differed greatly in their weight limits.

I also liked the idea of having a bassinet in addition to the car seat which is usually seen in a travel system.

Easy clean

I am not interested in spending a bunch of time cleaning a car seat, and maybe it is just me, but I have particularly messy kids. A quick clean was something that was going to be essential for me. By quick, I mean quick. I wanted to wipe the car seat and forget about it.

Price

We are all limited by price, and some of the travel systems I saw were a bit out of reach for me.

What did I choose?

I actually did decide to go with a travel system! I found one that was within my budget and included a bassinet, a car seat and a stroller base. It’s working perfectly for me, and although there were many other great options, this one seems to be perfect for me.

baby bath

Giving your Baby a Bath

There is something about giving your baby a bath that allows you to bond with the baby in a fun and personal way. If this is the first time you’re giving the baby a bath, here are the steps you need to take.

Start by gathering the supplies you need such as shampoo, a towel, a small tub and a small toy for the baby to play with as you’re giving him a bath. Then you will want to fill the small tub with warm water before placing the baby in the tub and washing him gently. Let the baby move and splash around in the tub as this is a good time for him to enjoy himself.

Additional Tips on Giving Baths To Babies

Before you put the baby in the tub it is important that you check the water to ensure that it is not too hot so that it will not scald the baby. Another thing you should do is hold the baby securely so that he will not drown or hurt himself. While giving your baby a bath, teach him words that pertain to his body parts so that over time he’ll be able to identify them each time he is in the tub. Never leave the baby in the tub unattended and don’t give the bath when you’re in a rush.

Baby Baths And Colic

If your baby is screaming constantly due to colic, a warm bath might help him calm down. This may not work for every baby in that situation but it doesn’t hurt to try. According to some medical reports it would be a good idea to give the baby a warm bath to soothe him.

Essential Oils And Baby Baths

When you give the baby a bath, put a few drops of essential oils in the bath water because these oils have soothing qualities for babies and they’re safe to use. Some good oils to put in the water include coconut oil, almond oil, lavender oil and argan oil. Argan oil in particular works well for the skin and be sure not to put too much of it in the water.

Other Benefits of Baby Baths

When your skin touches the baby’s skin as you give him a bath, you warm him in a way that a blanket cannot do. As the baby hears your voice during bath time, he senses your presence and it gives him comfort while bathing. The baby also learns initial language skills because when you talk to him, he may try to imitate some of your words.

Conclusion

Giving your baby a bath allows for greater bonding with the child and it also relieves stress for you because you can take your mind off the stresses of the day and you can focus on the quality of time you share with the baby. Practice safety measures during the bath and you can even sing a few lullabies as a way of having fun.

If you need more help, there is a great video here.

Choosing the Best Baby Stroller

One of the biggest purchases you will probably make while pregnant is buying a baby stroller. There are so many options that it can be quite over whelming. In fact, I have heard people say that they spent more time choosing the right stroller than choosing a car!

There are a crazy amount of options from large full featured options to small lightweight strollers to double or triplet strollers. Every type of stroller has its pros and cons, and usually it is not possible to find one that is totally perfect for every situation. Many people actually end up owning more that one stroller so they can have ones that better suit different occasions.

How to Choose a Stroller?

Online Guides

There are many ways to approach choosing your ideal stroller. My favourite way is to check out online guides to choose the best baby stroller. This can be an easy way to compare different types of strollers and work out whether you really need that big stroller or could be better off with an umbrella stroller.

It is also important to decide how you will use your stroller. do you live somewhere you need to walk on gravel or dirt regularly? Do you want to go jogging with your baby? Do you plan to have two babies close in age so maybe need a double stroller? Once you know these answers, it is easier to pick which type of stroller is best for your family.

Test Drive a Stroller

It is also essential to actually test out the stroller. Go to a baby store and try pushing around a few strollers, folding them up and down and lifting them into your trunk. Ensure they fit into your trunk and that you can lift it comfortably. Also make sure that you push around the stroller with some weight in it – add some weights or heavier baby items so you have a better idea of how the stroller will handle once you are out with your baby.

It is a good idea to also take your partner with you and for them to push it around as well, especially if you are different heights as you may find different sized strollers more comfortable.

Ask Other Moms

Ask other moms that you know in your social circles and from work. This can be the best way to determine what baby stroller may work out best for you. Remember though that everyone has different needs, so what is right for your friend, may not be right for you.

Check Out Safety Requirements

It’s important you only buy a stroller which is safe for your baby. Check out the latest safety guidelines and ensure your potential stroller meets them all.

Picking a baby stroller can be stressful, but if you follow the tips above, hopefully it will be made easier 🙂

Essential Baby Items You Need

So you are pregnant and wondering what essential baby items you need when you bring home your new baby?

Feeding Equipment

A quality, safe breast pump is essential such as an Ameda breast pump, so that you can store breast milk for the baby. Bottles are necessary for new parents and you can buy them in bulk inexpensively from discount stores.  If you are formula feeding your baby, then you need to stock up on formula.

Clothing

For clothing, you should buy plenty of onesies and undershirts for the baby and you’ll also need a lot of nightgowns and socks to keep the baby warm in the cold months. Hats are also important to get for the new baby and blankets should be purchased.

Crib and Stroller

A crib and stroller are essential.  These need to be suitable for newborns and meet all safety requirements.   The best strollers lay completely flat for a newborn, like the Baby Jogger City Select. You can read more about choosing a baby stroller.

Pacifiers And Safe Toys

There are times when your baby will get irritated and cry a lot, so it would be a good idea to buy a few pacifiers to calm him down. As he becomes a toddler he’ll develop his motor skills so a few safe toys would also be nice to have on hand. You can find affordable pacifiers and toys at most chain discount retailers.

Car Seat

Since you’ll travel with the baby often, it’s important that you purchase a car seat that is safe and that fits the baby’s size and needs. Before you buy a car seat, research different brands and models so that you’re getting the best products. Also inquire about any recalls of certain car seats when looking for a car seat.

Changing Station

You want to have a changing station because this makes it easier for you to change the baby’s diaper. Stock the changing station with diapers, diaper rash cream, lotion, baby powder, baby wipes and extra clothing.

Bathing Items

Baths are important for a baby’s health so you should include bathing items such as baby shampoo, baby towels, baby lotion, essential oils, and some tiny wash towels. A small tub to put the baby in should also be purchased if you’re a new mother.

Bedding Items

Another thing you need to get is a variety of bedding items for the crib such as linen sheets and crib liners. You want to buy these in bulk so that you’ll always have some on hand.

Conclusion

You should purchase the essential items a few months before the baby is born and the best way to do this is to establish a baby registry where loved ones can buy some of the things needed for the baby. You should include the most expensive items such as a stroller and crib on the registry if you currently can’t afford to buy them.

While you can buy some baby items used, this is not always the best choice because those items suffered wear and tear and it could be a safety concern, especially used cribs and strollers. Finally, buy items according to your budget.

You may also want to check out my article about what you need to take to the hospital when giving birth.