Thursday, January 28, 2010

More Gear and Registry Essentials, Part II (12 Days to Baby)

According to my mother, it’s time for me to finish up listing my registry essentials. Apparently these gear posts are a bit boring to the mom’s no longer in the consumer trenches.

“Back when you were a baby, we didn’t have all these fancy options. We made our own baby carriers out of twine and backpack frames. And you have seen the photos of you coming home from the hospital – there was no car seat.”

I’ve seen the photos. In the first one, my mother is sitting in the passenger seat, smiling a toothy grin at the man on the other side of the camera, protecting a little white bundle on her lap. Her skin looks soft and dewy and fresh and she oozes joy. Her pretty blue dress matches a ribbon woven through her perfectly coiffed hair. This is a happy mother. In the next photo, there is my father. His youthful, tall and lanky frame is emphasized by his proud pose, hands on his hips like a superhero. He smiles as if someone just told a funny joke and while his eyes are disguised by a pair of thick rimmed Buddy Holly glasses, you can see the ambition and the confidence in his gaze. This young couple is so clearly overflowing with joy at the promise of a future filled with bottle feeding and diaper changes.

“When you were little, I had the toughest time getting you to sleep. I would put you in the crib for a nap or down for the night and you were perfectly happy to just sit in your crib and play with your books and toys. I would stand outside the door and listen to you talk to your toys. I needed you to sleep. So, I finally cleared every single toy out of the crib and left you nothing but a blanket. Oh, I felt so guilty. I thought for sure you would erupt in tears. But I stood outside the door, and could still hear you in their talking away. Well, I went into the room and found you playing with the tassles on your blanket. You had a Mommy tassle and a Daddy tassle, an Erik tassle, a Katryn tassle, a Kirsten tassle and a little tassle that was meant to be the family dog. You found some way to make that blanket into a dollhouse and I just gave up! So no matter what you think you need to have for your little girl, just remember that kids don’t need all the little things we think they do.”

Thanks Mom. And since yesterday was your birthday, I will hurry through these last five registry essentials.

The Diaper Genie

The only thing my father insisted we purchase was a diaper genie. I had no idea what this was until he explained, “It’s for dirty diapers, so your entire house doesn’t smell like baby crap.” This handy little device opens when you step on the little foot pedal and makes an airtight seal when you take your foot off the pedal. It contains a deodorizer and can be sealed off at the top whenever you are ready to take out the trash. My mom told me that if we didn’t get one, we were not likely to get a visit from my father. We registered for the Diaper Genie II Elite Pail System and a 3 pack of bag refills.


(We thank Kevin and Mary for keeping our house smelling fresh for Papas next visit)

The Baby Bath

Did you know that you are supposed to bathe an infant nightly? Nightly! That’s a lot of bathing. And for two people that live in an old Brownstone with a bathroom that basically sits on the fire escape and runs about 25 degrees in the winter months, we knew right away we were going to have to bathe our baby in the kitchen sink. Sink bathing requires a small tub and eliminates most of the available options. We were rethinking our strategy when I stumbled upon this Infant To Toddler Tub with Sling. Despite being an awful bright shade of pink plastic, it fits perfectly in our kitchen sink, has a little sling for a newborn and includes a caddy for our little washcloths and soaps. It got great reviews on Amazon and at $17.99, it was way cheaper then all the other models.


The Swing’n’Bounce

My sister-in-law insisted that we need something to put our baby in that would shut her up immediately when nothing else would.

“It will be your favorite baby gadget,” She assured me.

We surveyed the options, read the safety ratings and took our BuyBuyBaby Gearologist’s recommendation and went for the Graco LIttle Jungle Swing N Bounce. After an afternoon putting it together, we found the perfect spot for all its adorableness. This little toy makes me want to be curl up in fetal position and let it rock me to sleep. We love the little giraffes and can’t wait to place our little bundle into its super soft vibrating, swinging, singing seat.


(Susan and John gave us the worlds largest box at my baby shower and inside of it was a much smaller and more manageable box that contained this fabulous swing’n’bounce for which we are incredibly thankful)

The Breast Pump

I promise, no photos. Gabe and I decided that we want to breast feed and pump in between so that we can both feed the baby. To do this, you actually need a breast pump. I had no idea what this was or how it worked or what it cost. Well breast pumps allow you to extract and store your milk. You stick these funnel like devices over your nipples and flick a switch that starts pumping out your breast milk into a tube that runs to a bottle. Have you ever seen someone milk a cow? Well it’s kinda like that. Except that breast pumps have really evolved and depending on how much you want to spend, you can get one that you have to manually pump or you can get one that pumps for you. Hands-free pumps are expensive, with some over $400. We pooled our BuyBuyBaby gift certificates and coupons and for $245 bought this Medela Pump in Style Advanced Breast Pump with Backpack. I have absolutely no idea how it will work or if I will ever use it. I pulled it out of the bag and tried to hook it up the other day and the whole thing just freaked me out. I’ll keep you posted on this.

Storage Bins

Now that we have all these lovely gadgets, toys, blankets, washcloths, burp cloths, and diaper products where do we stick them? I saw the perfect little cubby bench at Pottery Barn and then I found it for about $300 less on Amazon. Behold, the Monterey Cubbie Bench.This beauty will keep us organized and Daddy can use his new label maker to be sure we don’t mix up the bins. For me, this cubbie was a registry essential and it really helped turn our bedroom into more of a nursery.


So Mom, I think that about does it for our registry essentials. However, I reserve the right to keep you informed as baby tries out all her new gear. What we have should hold us through the first six months of babies life. And should we find ourselves in need, I know where to go for the twine.

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