In honor of Lucas turning 5 months old earlier this week, I have compiled another must-haves list (previous ones include: Our Month 2 Must-Haves, 7 New Mama Essentials, and Baby Bump Haul: 5 Things I’m Loving This Pregnancy). This one features our recent most favored, most useful baby things (outside, of course, of anything previously mentioned such as our stroller, and our diaper bag):
#1: Bjorn Soft Selection Bouncer
This is one of the single most wonderful things we’ve ever used in our early life as parents. It was a gift from an angel/Secret Santa whose identity continues to evade us, so if any of you out there know who got us this amazing contraption: please let us know so we can thank this person profusely! We do so much with Lucas in this thing and he seems to love it! It’s in our living room and we do all of our read-aloud sessions in it, we feed him in it, and we perch him in it if he happens to be awake while we are having a meal or watching a movie. My only gripe is that it doesn’t have anything you can hang teethers/rattles/etc from. But that’s a small problem and doesn’t seem to affect the hours of fun and good use we get out of it in the long run.
#2: Playgro Dingly Dangly Horse
This was a thoughtful gift from our friend – Vysh, and has been a mainstay since the first week we moved here (so really quite a bit earlier than Lucas’ 4th month, but still). He has always loved it as it is incredibly versatile (it can hang from his Bjorn [see above], and his stroller [see previous entries]; and it rattles on one foot, squeaks on another, can be theethed on, and is generally goofy and fun to look at). However, he’s taken an even greater shine to it now that he can actually shake it, grab it, squeeze it himself. This is the only toy we cart around with us wherever we go (it was even the only toy we brought to Bali), and has proven incredibly useful particularly in restaurants or whilst we warm up his milk and want to keep him distracted.
#3: D-Link IP Camera (DCS 930L)
I didn’t really realize how great a Nanny Cam would be until I hired my own nanny and suddenly wanted to be able to check in on Lucas throughout the day without sending a barrage of messages her way constantly. This D-Link IP Camera is small, lightweight, and cheap (approximately US$33); and, best of all, it hooks up to WiFi and its feed can be accessed via the app or the Chrome plug-in at any time of the day. The funny thing, honestly, is that I rarely ever check it while I’m at work, but just the thought of it being there and accessible offers me peace of mind.*
#4: Lamaze PondMotion Gym
Special mention to my Mama (“Nonna” to Lucas), who got us this back in the Philippines as a “tummy time” aide. This has been a staple in our home since Lucas started tummy time, and has only gotten more and more useful as he’s gotten older. We put him on it multiple times a day, and often just leave him there (supervised, of course) to explore the limits of his own strength. It is on this mat that he has perfected rolling over onto his belly (and then back again onto his back); and it has even helped with his reaching and grabbing skills. Lately, he’s also taken to creeping: a new favorite of his which involves pushing and pulling himself across / over / along the mat to reach different toys / sides of it.
#5: IKEA Solsta Sofa Bed
Though we have a really great airbed, we knew that for Lucas’ room we also wanted something I could: 1) nurse on, 2) read on, 3) offer to guests to sleep on, 4) turn into a “mat” to play on. Thus, enter: the Solsta Sofa Bed. It can literally do all those things. Sure, it isn’t the most comfortable bed to sleep on, but with a mattress topper it does the trick better than many others in this price range (US$124). It even dismantles small enough and flat enough for you to take it home in your own car, and is easy enough to assemble yourself in a 20 minute time frame. We use it daily to place his Lamaze Pondmotion Gym (see above) on top of for him to play.
#6: Books! (See the list I posted earlier this week here)
As I’ve already mentioned in another recent post: as a family, we really love our books.
So there it is folks! Our little list of must-haves. What’s on yours? 🙂
*For what it’s worth, I really love our nanny. I think we made a great choice employing her. So the nanny cam isn’t in because I don’t trust her. However, the truth in this world is you can never be too careful. And when it comes to our son, I’d rather be safe than sorry. 🙂
+And once more, thank you to each brand (Bjorn, Lamaze, IKEA, PlayGro, and D-Link) for the product shots.