best of 2018: baby purchases!
Last week we started a January series all about my best purchases in 2018, by category! Last week I shared my best beauty buys, and today I will be sharing our best baby purchases (with a little pregnancy things mixed in too)! Just a little disclaimer though: remember that EVERY baby is SO different and prefers totally different things! These are just some things that have worked really well for Shiloh, or things that I’ve loved as a new mom! Here’s a collage of all my faves followed by full review of each!
Click any image in the collage to shop my favorite baby + pregnancy items!
I think I will do an entire blog post review on the Doona sometime within the next few weeks so I won’t go into TOO much detail here. But, we just used our Doona for the first time when we flew to Charleston for a wedding, and omg I am obsessed. If you have a baby and you travel a lot – this is 100% a necessity. If you’re not familiar with the Doona, it’s a stroller that also collapses down into a carseat – all in one, no attachments. It’s SO nice when you fly because you can just wheel her through the airport in this stroller, and then collapse it down before you board the plane to gate check it. [We actually lucked out and could bring it on the plane and put it in the seat next to us, but more details on that in another blog post haha]. The Doona is SO convenient both for traveling and everyday life. You literally just get it out of your car and pop it up into a stroller in one easy step. I am obsessed!
Michael makes fun of me because I think I legit ordered every swaddle ever made after Shiloh was born…because she kept breaking out of all of them! OR they were too loose or too complicated. I refrained from buying the Ollie for a while because it was more expensive than other swaddles…but it’s hands down my favorite one! AND you can totally customize how tight to make it because of the velcrow, so your baby can use this no matter what age they’re at. I’ve found this swaddle to work the best for us because you can make it SO tight, and she breaks out of this one less than any other swaddle. [Our second favorite swaddle which you will see pictured above is the swaddleme swaddle! it’s really easy to use and also keeps her arms down by her sides really well]. I literally tried every other swaddle out there and these are our two favorites!
This is another item I probably purchased 100 of before landing on a paci that finally worked for Shiloh haha. She LOVES pacifiers, but struggles to keep them in her mouth [which can be pretty annoying when she wakes up 100x during naptime because the paci fell out haha]. The mam pacifiers stay in her mouth better than any other one we’ve tried!
Y’all have probably seen this a ton in my IG stories. TBH Shiloh didn’t really like this seat until recently (when she hit about 2 months old). We didn’t get the infant insert for it and it just swallowed her the first two months haha. She LOVES it now that she’s a little bigger though. This is a bouncy seat that has 5 different options for motion (ie: car ride, wave, tree swing, etc) with different options for the speed as well. Shiloh girl LOVES motion haha so we typically put it on “car ride” level 5! She loves to move. But she hangs out in this all the time while I’m working, naps in it, and is just so happy in here. We’ve tried about 4 different “bouncy seat” swing type things and this is by far her favorite! [This is definitely an area though where every baby is totally different, and you gotta find what works for you!].
This is the car seat / stroller system we use on a day to day basis. We used the Doona when we traveled, but the uppababy is our go-to! [Side note – you definitely could make the Doona your everyday if you wanted to!]. We love the uppababy for SO many reasons. First of all – Shiloh loves this carseat. She falls asleep pretty much everytime she’s in it haha. Second of all, it’s super easy to use. The car seat clips right onto the stroller without any hassle or attachments. We also have the bassinet that clips onto the stroller which I love! The bassinet is also convenient for traveling because you can use that as the baby’s bed! This stroller is so nice because the wheels are BIG so you don’t have to worry about your baby bouncing around like crazy if you’re strolling on a bumpy road. The quality on both the carseat and the stroller is top notch and we plan on using this for years to come with our next baby / babies!
Prior to finding this pillow, I was either using the Boppy or wasn’t using any pillow when I would nurse Shiloh. The boppy worked okay but I was still having to add extra pillows or rolled up blankets under it to get comfortable. The brest friend pillow works SO much better for me than the Boppy! It provides more back support, and you can wear it up higher than the boppy so you’re not hunched over. It just feels way more secure and supportive to me! When we went to Charleston last weekend I didn’t bring it with me and forgot how much harder it is to breastfeed without this pillow! I highly recommend looking into it if you’ve noticed back, arm, or shoulder pain while nursing!
Hatch Sound Machine [with nightlight!]
This is the sound machine we use for Shiloh EVERY night! We turn the white noise on as loud as it will go and it calms her down right away! There are so many sound machines out there, but I love this one because it has a nightlight on it too AND it works with my phone. So, when I go in there at night to nurse her, I’m not fumbling around trying to figure out how to turn the white noise off or turn a light on. I just press a button on my phone and it’s done! You can also program your favorite settings on your phone. So for example when Shiloh is sleeping at night, we have the white noise on as loud as it will go with no lights. When I’m nursing her in the middle of the night, we have no noise on and low light. You can program these favorites on your phone! You can also create custom programs on here to cue your toddler for bath time or bedtime!
We actually just got this product a few days ago so it’s technically not a 2018 purchase, but I wanted to include because it’s one of my favorite baby items we own. This smart changing pad has helped ease my anxious mind SO much when it comes to nursing, because it weighs your baby before a feeding, and after a feeding and calculates exactly how much baby drank! Any day that Shiloh is more fussy than usual or not sleeping as much at night, my mind instantly resorts to “its because she’s not getting enough!” I was always questioning if she was getting enough at each feeding and it’s SO nice to be able to see “your baby ate 4oz!” (or whatever the number is). You can also track your baby’s weight gain on here, and then it’s obviously a changing pad as well! If you also worry about your supply or if baby is getting enough, I can’t recommend this smart changing pad enough!
I got asked all the time what the best maternity jeans are, and this pair is definitely my favorite! I didn’t want to spend a ton of money on maternity clothes, so I mainly stuck to oversized tops and sweaters and leggings. These maternity jeans saved me and I got SO much wear out of them! They’re also insanely comfortable. I basically lived in them throughout the end of my pregnancy! I love that they just look like normal, cute jeans and they never fall down/slide while you’re wearing them. If you’re pregnant, I definitely recommend grabbing a pair of maternity jeans from Madewell – they’re the BEST!
I’ve shared about these pumps on instagram stories before, but I definitely had to include them in this post! I am OBSESSED with these pumps! If you aren’t familiar with the Willow pumps, they essentially allow you to pump on-the-go. You just put them in your bra and you can pump while you’re moving around and getting other things done. It’s a total game changer and just takes multitasking to another level! Plus, if you’re like me and get bored sitting/pumping, then these are amazing. I will say there’s a huge learning curve with these at the beginning, but that’s where their incredible customer service comes into play! They talked me through it all and answered every question I had, and I got it all figured out! These can definitely pump just as much as the Medela or any hospital grade pump.
Y’all, I can’t imagine having a baby and NOT having this rock ‘n play sleeper! Seriously, it has been such a helpful thing to have in the house. Not only is it under $80, but it’s also lightweight and easy to move around the house. It’s essentially a small sleeper / playtime seat, but it also plugs it and can rock the baby. Shiloh LOVES it and enjoys just sitting in it, but also she has taken some naps in here. It’s just so helpful for when my arms need a break, plus since it’s light it’s easy to move around the house or even bring on a road trip!
This may be the item I’ve worn that has gotten hands down the MOST questions ever haha! Y’all love it just as much as I do, which makes me so happy. I had to include it here because it’s my favorite necklace and I wear it every single day. It’s so delicate and the quality is incredible. I know I’ll have it forever! I love that since it’s so understated, I can wear it with everything and even layer other necklaces with it. Any expecting mommas out there – this makes a great push present!
As I said before, every baby/pregnancy is different, but these are the items I can’t imagine not having for Shiloh and me. They have been SO helpful these past few months and I know I’ll be grateful to have them for any future babies. I know motherhood can be so overwhelming and it can be hard to know what you need and what works or doesn’t work, so I hope this post helped provide insight and guide your search a little bit!