Musings on Baby Gadgets: What Works and What Does Not

Gadgets that work

Crib — Invest in a decent crib. Our crib lasted through 3 kids. We did not buy a crib that could convert in to a bed, instead we bought a regular twin bed when the time came to switch our toddlers in to a bed.

Graco Playyard — square, folded in to zip up bag. Perfect for hotels and condos.

Exersaucer or other stationary device — Ours worked for 5 kids (my 3 plus 2 cousins).

High chair — buy one with a removable tray that is easy to clean. Buy one with a fabric seat cover rather than plastic.

Step stools — but one for each bathroom. Great for short kids who can’t climb on toilet. Also great for teeth brushing.

Booster seat for kitchen table — Buy one that fold flat so that you can carry it to restaurants. Make sure straps can be securely fastened.

Diaper bag — Buy a sturdy bag for first child. Large bags are great for two children so that you can carry two sets of everything. For my 3rd child I used he hospital issued black diaper bag. It was tiny, which meant I could only carry an outfit, a couple of diapers, a bottle plus formula, and one or two toys.

Gadgets that are useless

Changing table — good for when you have one child, but beyond that not helpful. As a mom of a toddler and infant I did not feel comfortable leaving toddler downstairs while I went upstairs. I changed my babies on the familyroom floor on a changing mat. I borrowed a changing table from my parents with my 3rd child.

Wipe warmer or bottle warmer. Wipes can be cold…No need to warm up. Just one more piece of equipment needing an electrical outlet. The bottle warmer was a tricky device to use as it did not have a timer. Couldn’t regulate temp.

Snuggly — I’m the rare mom who found the snuggly useless. I’m larger chested and although I could wear the front-facing Snuggly, I could not move well. My husband loved it — he wore the baby in it when he vacuumed.

Toddler beds — large Little Tikes cars are hard to fit in a room, plus tall kids are too long for toddler beds. A twin bed with a bed rail works well as an alternative to a toddler bed.

What was your all-time, can’t live without it baby gadget? What was the “I can’t believe I bought this” gadget?

2 comments for “Musings on Baby Gadgets: What Works and What Does Not

  1. melaniet42
    May 12, 2009 at 2:19 am

    I’m only on my first, but I think the best thing we invested in was a glider (with gliding ottoman) for the nursery. Actually, it was a gift from my parents. We got a sturdy one with a fabric that would match our other furniture, so once it outlived it’s usefulness in the nursery (which after 16 months, it’s still in use), it can be placed in another room. Also, we already had a La-Z-Boy rocker/recliner in the living room which has also proved to be fantastic.

    Biggest waste? An expensive baby monitor. We wanted something digital to prevent interference problems since we live in a townhome community. We got the most expensive one out there after reading review after review. We didn’t use close to half the features and stopped using it completely well before our little one was a year old.

  2. msprimadonna67
    May 12, 2009 at 4:03 pm

    I agree with Melanie–the glider that I got when I had my first was probably our best investment. All three of my kids loved to be rocked and nursed in that chair. Believe me, I logged lots of miles there.

    There are three other gadgets that I would recommend to anyone having a baby. The first is a Medela breast pump, if the mom is planning to nurse. I tried others with my first-born, but nothing worked. When I bought the Medela, the difference was amazing! The second was a womb bear. If you’re unfamiliar with this, it’s a stuffed animal. There’s a sound box inside of it that recreates the sounds of the womb. All of my kids loved it, but my son especially cozied up to that thing for months to fall asleep at night. The last one is actually the diaper wipe warmer. I know you said you weren’t a fan, but I loved mine! It helped keep that shocking cold of the baby wipes from fully waking up the baby if he/she needed a diaper change in the middle of the night.

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