Gift ideas for a 9 month old girl

I love brainstorming for gift ideas, I love finding that special something that I know someone would just love! That’s why I am so excited about Christmas this year. I mean, I’m excited every year, but this year is going to be the best. It’s our first year as a family of 4, Emma can actually understand what is going on  (i.e how to open her own gifts), and Alina is mobile enough to enjoy the festivities as well! I just can’t wait to hear the little girl squeals when they open their gifts. I already made a list of gift ideas for a 2 year old so now it’s time to get my list going for Alina, my 9 month old.

9 month gift ideas

1. Baby’s first Bible.  For Emma’s first Christmas we gave her a baby Bible with an inscription from her dad in it so we are making it a tradition for all of our children. I don’t know if this is the exact one we will get but I like the look of it.

2. Laugh and Play Love to Learn Sis. I’ve seen a similar one  around for awhile but always thought it was a little too pricey. Well, now there’s a smaller version for a smaller price! It sings, counts, says the ABC’s and lots of other fun stuff! I like that it is a toy that can grow with her.

3.Bath Toys. Since she’s about to graduate to the big tub and out of the baby tub I thought some new tub toys would be nice. I like these.

4.My first purse. At this point we own about every girl toy out there so trying to find something we don’t have is a challenge. Surprisingly we don’t have a purse. This girl needs a purse right?!

5. Baby Einstein Bendy Ball . This looks like something she will love! She loves balls and this one looks bright and easy to hold onto.

6. Karen Katz BooksWe are a little crazy about these books in our house. My girls absolutely love them. Each page has something you lift to “find” what’s underneath. So much fun for a baby! We have a few already but I am loving this one for Miss Alina.

7. Hootie Cutie. Alina loves stuffed toys and I love how this one looks. I know she will like all the gadgets on this one.

8. Melissa and Doug puzzle. I love Melissa and Doug toys so I really like this puzzle as a beginner puzzle for her.

That’s all the ideas I have for now. Do you have any ideas for a 9-12 month girl? Let me know in the comments.

Top 10 items you need for a new baby

When it comes to registering for and buying items you need for a new baby, the options can be so overwhelming. I know when it was my first time I would often go and just stand in the aisles staring wide-eyed and clueless. Did I need a crib right away or just a bassinet? What brand of car seat should I buy? What about a swing, do I need one of those? So many choices and all the advertisements you start getting in the mail and via email don’t help  matters. How does every baby company automatically know when you get pregnant?

So I have rounded up a list of what I think are the top 10 items you need for a new baby. You’re welcome! Note: I am not including diapers, wipes and food in this list because..well…obviously you need those.

items for baby 2

1.//A swing. There’s a reason I put this first. Hands down the best purchase we have made is this Snug- a-Bunny cradle and swing.  I know some moms are afraid that if they let their babies sleep in a swing then they will never sleep in a crib. I am 100% pro swing. I say use the swing as much as you need to mama. Your babies will be fine and will eventually sleep in a crib. Get a swing. Get one that plugs in and that is very comfortable looking. Use that sucker. If you want to know other sleep items I recommend read here.

2.//Swaddle Blankets. These are my favorite type of swaddle blankets. I’m not crazy about the swaddle me brand or really any of the others. I like these because they are big and you can get a good tight swaddle with them every time. Want to know my secret to swaddling a newborn? Watch here.  Once I started swaddling my babies like this using the Aden and Anais swaddle wraps, I never looked back. Oh and want to know my secret for weaning from the swaddle? Read here.

3.//Rock and Play sleeper. In my opinion you don’t need a crib (right away), you don’t need a bassinet, you don’t need a co-sleeper. You need a Rock and Play. This thing is a miracle baby item. Babies love it because it’s inclined but not too inclined and cuddles them close. Some of the newer models even vibrate.  If you have to go somewhere over night, take it with you in lieu of a pack and play. My babies sleep so good in it, right beside my bed.

4.//A Boppy Pillow. There are other nursing pillows out there but I love my Boppy. Of course I use it the most for nursing to get a comfortable hold but I also use it for when baby is awake and I want to let them kick and look around. It props them up nicely to take pictures too. Please never leave a baby unattended on a Boppy though!

5.//Glider. You have to sit somewhere when you feed, rock, burp, cluster feed and rock some more. Why not sit somewhere comfortable? Do yourself a favor mama and get a comfy glider with a foot rest as a gift to yourself. Put it close to a window and a side table. You will love it and so will your baby. Here’s the one I have and its a bargain!

6. //Long sleeved ,footed sleepers.  I know the question still remains, do I get button or zippered? That’s just a personal preference. I actually like both. Zippered because they are oh so easy to maneuver in the middle of the night. Buttoned because it doesn’t uncover their chest during a diaper change. You decide. One thing is for sure. Get footed because newborn socks are from the devil and get long sleeves, yes, even if it’s summer. Carters makes great sleepers.

7.//Nail Clippers.Here’s the thing. You either buy nail clippers or mittens. And while mittens are cute, I find them difficult to keep up with. I prefer to just clip their nails from the get-go. It gets easier and you get quicker. You have to protect them from scratching themselves somehow.

8.//Diaper bag.  Say what you want but I think a diaper bag is essential. It doesn’t have to be a traditional diaper bag per se but something to carry baby items in. Let me tell you, newborns are unpredictable so leave the house prepared. Whatever that looks like for you. I really like this bag, stylish and functional. Want to know what I think you should pack in a diaper bag? Read here. 

9.//Travel system. The travel system that we have isn’t being made anymore. It’s from Graco, it didn’t break the bank and we love it. I found it extremely convenient to have the car seat that  just snaps right into the stroller perfectly. Graco has cleaned up their act since the big recall, even though we have never had any problems with them in the first place. Here’s a similar one to the one we have.

10.// Happy Baby Wrap. I can’t shout it from the rooftops enough. Get a baby wrap!! I love my Happy Baby Wrap but there are other great brands out there too. I can’t tell you how many newborn cranky meltdowns my baby wrap solved. It’s like magic. Plus they come in amazing colors and styles that make you want every single one.

There you have it! My top 10 items for a new baby. What do you think? Would you add or take something away from this list? Let me know in the comments.

items for baby 2

 

Favorite Kids Books

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When it comes to kids and books…at least my kids, I have found that there are stages. These are the ones we’ve been though so far.

First there’s the newborn stage where they lay quietly on the boppy pillow cooing at you softly while you read aloud and turn the crisp pages of your beloved collection of children’s books. Next comes the drooly, grabby stage. Where you still can read aloud to them but you must keep the book out their reach and away from their teething gums, its like a game. Once they’re mobile you either hide the books or only leave out the ones in which you don’t mind the pages being bent and  ripped . Any attempts to read a book to them will be met with the book being promptly taken from you and either eaten or thrown. There may come a stage after that where they are obsessed with a particular book and demand you read it over and over, often turning the pages before you can finish said page, then demanding that you read the whole thing over again.It’s a fun cycle.

For a small time books were forgotten due the influx of new toys and an exciting new baby sister. Finally…finally  we are at a stage where I can read a book out loud and she actually sits, listens and enjoys it! Of course at the same time I am playing keep away with my youngest. It definitely makes for an interesting story time.

Here are some books that Emma is loving right now, I can’t speak for Alina. I know she loves to eat them, but read …not so much. Click on the links below to see where they can be purchased.

books

1. Emeraldalicious//2. The New Baby//3.The Going to Bed Book

4. Moo Baa LaLaLa//5. Opposites //6. Blue Hat, Green Hat

7. I’m a Big Sister//8.Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You?

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What are some of your kid’s favorites?

It’s the little things – Sisters

I always thought I would be a boy mom. I had my future all planned out by the age of 19 and I saw only boy babies. I imagined 3 or 4 miniature versions of my husband running around shirtless, toy trucks in hand with dirt smudged on their cheeks. I don’t know why I thought it would be this way but I did.

However, almost the moment I found out I was expecting …both times. I knew they were girls. My dreams of having a brood of boys were quickly replaced with visions of hairbows, pigtails, baby dolls and everything soft and sweet. My girls. Sisters. I feel like I have been given the sweetest treasure of all.

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I’m not exaggerating when I say that they are the best of friends. As much as any little person can be. They both light up when the other one comes into view. They look at each other and giggle all the time. They roll around in the floor squealing on a daily basis.

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Emma is always saying “she’s so cute mama” or “sister is so sweet mama”. She won’t let me put Alina down for a nap until she gives her a hug AND a kiss. Must not forget one. If she hears her waking up from a nap she jumps up and says “let’s go get sister mama”. She makes sure Alina has a toy or her paci if she hears her getting fussy. She’s my protective one.

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Alina is the little clown. She’s always trying to get Emma’s attention and then when she has it she runs with it. She loves to constantly grab Emma’s clothes or talk jibberish to her. I can see her being the brave one. It’s magical.

Of course, not everyday is like this. Having a sister close in age myself I know that fights and arguments happen. But I also know that I have a friend for life, a confidant..forever. I am grateful that I was given these two sisters first, even if our future does hold a shirtless boy with dirt smudged cheeks. I am soaking in their gentle natures and their quickly growing friendship.

::Linking up today with Ashley and Jess::

 

Mommy Meme Monday

Time for another Mommy Meme Monday, because it’s Monday and we could all use a laugh. Click on the image to see source.

Enjoy!

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mom meme

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How to make easy homemade baby food

When it came time to start solids with my oldest child, it never crossed my mind to attempt to make my own baby food. It seems strange now that I didn’t at least try.  We were hardcore store bought puree users. This time around we are in a different financial situation and I knew we needed to save the money by making our own baby food.

So I got started like any good, respectable mother does…I Googled “How to make baby food”, then “How to make easy baby food” . While I found many helpful tutorials and you can probably find lots better than the one I’m about to give you, I thought I would just add my 2 cents since It’s so easy to do. So here you have it, How to make Easy Homemade baby food.

Things you will need:

1. Food of choice (fruit, veggies, meat, etc.)

2. Something to steam the food, can be stove top or microwave

2. Something to blend the food, I use a Nutri -Bullet but anything will work (processor, blender, etc)

3. liquid (breast milk or water)

4. Ice trays

5. Gallon size storage bags

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Step 1. Choose what food you want to make. There are so many out there that are very easy to make. For this tutorial I was making butternut squash and avocado. Some others that are our favorites are apples, sweet potato, banana, carrots. blueberries, squash, peas and pears.

Step 2. Prepare the Food. Depending on what you are making it may need to be prepped. If you are making something easy like bananas or avocado it’s as simple as peeling it. Most others will need to be cooked first. For the Butternut squash I sliced lengthwise and laid face down in 3/4 inch of water and microwaved on high for 8-9 minutes until soft. Apples, carrots, pears and peas can all be steamed or boiled until soft.

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Step 3.  Once the food is cooked drain and scoop into your blender of choice. I use the Nutri -Bullet since we already had it and it works great! A plain blender will work well too. I find it works best if I only fill my container or blender only half way with the cooked food.

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Step 4. Next  Add the water or breast milk . There is no exact science to this, start by adding  a little until you get the desired consistency. At first you may want it thinner for your baby and then thicker as they grow. You can always add more you can’t take it away so use caution.

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Step 5.  Blend! Mash, puree…whatever you want to call it. You can always stop and test it, then add more liquid if needed.

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Step 6. Pour or scoop your pureed food into your ice cube trays. If the consistency is too thick to pour easily I have found scooping with a smaller spoon works nicely. Place your trays into the freezer. Freeze until solid. I usually leave mine there overnight.

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Step 7. “Crack” your ice trays and pop the frozen food into your labeled gallon bags. If they are being stubborn, try a knife around the edge to loosen it or let them sit a few minutes on the counter and try again.  Then stash your bags in the freezer for easy access and feeding.Feel free to mix and match, try bananas and peas or avocado and pears….get crazy!

Voila! There you have it. Easy right?

Interested in trying the Nutri-Bullet? Go Here .

A Day in the Life

8:30am

 I stir to the sound of a little voice and the jingle jingle jingle of a stuffed elephant being played with coming through the monitor on my nightstand. I roll out of bed, stop to brush my teeth and head to the laundry room to start a load of clothes. I then quickly dress myself before I start to get the girls up.

9:00am

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Breakfast time, where Emma usually requests a banana or pancakes which most days are the frozen kind.  A toy or stuffed animal from the crib  is always present at the table. And milk, always almond milk, because it’s her favorite.  Alina sits in her highchair playing with toys or attempting to get a few banana pieces in her mouth.  I fix a bottle and feed Alina while Em finishes her breakfast.

9:30am

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I wipe them down and situate them in the living room with toys to play. I finish cleaning up breakfast, move the clothes to the dryer and sit down to pump. My pumping station is set up where I can see them playing. Emma usually rides up on her car and wants me to push her backwards with my feet. I always do. I talk to Alina and watch her play with whatever she can get her hands on. Today she’s in the exersaucer. She’s not crawling yet so sometimes I just sit her on the floor with a basket of toys.

10:30am

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Time for Lina’s first nap. After laying her down I get Emma ready for the day. She doesn’t care to pick out her own clothes yet. I spray her hair with water and put it in pigtails. I love the little ringlets. Next, we get the clothes from the dryer to fold. She loves to help me fold clothes. This usually consists of her taking each article of clothing out of the basket a few pieces at a time until the basket is empty, then she climbs in the basket and sits. After folding clothes I fix her a snack, usually a bowl of grapes. I let her choose a show to watch. She picks Curious George. Some days it’s Daniel Tiger or Strawberry Shortcake. But usually George.

11:00am

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I sit down to check my emails and various social media while Emma watches her show. Today I get in about 15 minutes in before I hear little sister stirring awake. This was a short nap for her, I know she’ll be sleepy again soon. I watch her on the monitor quietly playing with her stuffed animals and know that she’ll be okay for a few minutes while I finish up. She always rolls her way to the end where her animals are and plays. Her favorite is the elephant that jingles.

11:15 am

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Emma and I go get sister up from nap, which always excites Emma because it gives her a chance to climb on the guest bed and jump. It’s a battle I don’t fight. She loves it. Alina greets me with a grin and a happy exhale. I unzip her from her zippy and we climb on the guest bed with Emma. Lots of bouncing and rolling on each other ensues.

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We head back into the living room to play some more. Some days we use this time to run errands or go outside. Today we just dump the toys on the floor and go for it. They love it when I sit down there with them. They usually both end up in my lap.  Building blocks is a favorite too. I get up after awhile to fix Alina a bottle since she’s getting fussy. I feed her and know that she’s ready for another nap.

12:15pm

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Alina usually joins us for lunch but today she is extra tired from the short nap. Emma and I sit down to lunch. She’s having cheese shapes, cuties, raisin toast and olives. She’s not a big lunch eater. I eat then quickly pump again while she finishes up. We head outside to take the trash out and get some fresh air. I take the monitor in case we stay awhile.  Emma always wants to see the neighbors dogs who bark incessantly at us, but she doesn’t seem to mind. She’s thrilled all the same.  We go and get the mail, stopping to pick up a few rocks.

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We go back inside to pick up toys and fold another load of laundry. Emma is pretty good about picking up toys and putting them back in the basket. She gets distracted by a toy she finds eventually. Today the rug needs vacuuming, so she climbs on the couch and watches while I vacuum.

1:15pm

Dad’s awake! Jonathan works night shift but today is one of his days off so he’s up early. On a work day he would sleep until about 3/3:30pm.  Emma is so happy to see daddy and they go off to the kitchen for their coffee routine where she helps him make coffee. She knows exactly how many cups of water and how many scoops he likes. After this they snuggle in his chair for a bit and get the blocks out again that we just picked up.

2:00pm

Nap for Emma is always at 2pm. Today she chooses a tennis ball and a little people toy to take with her. She always picks a ball but the other toy can vary. I sit down to finish up a blog post and return a few emails as well as chat with my hubby while he drinks his coffee and eats his breakfast.

2:20pm

I Hear Alina stirring on the monitor and feel relieved that she had a good long nap. Daddy goes and gets her and I can hear his singsong voice talking to her and her happily exhaling through the monitor. Some days If I need a break I can get their naps to coincide some but other days it doesn’t happen and I’m okay with that because it gives me one on one time with each of them. Daddy brings Alina to the living room where I have her bottle ready. I feed her then she plays awhile on the floor. Later she wants me to hold her again. So she sits with me while Jon and I talk. She likes to chew on my phone and I usually let her. I take her to the kitchen where I fix her some solids. She loves apples and sweet potatoes mixed together.

3:45pm

Time for Alina’s 3rd nap which is usually a short one. I sit down to pump again after putting her down.

4:00pm

We hear Emma stirring on the monitor. Some days she wakes up grumpy or weepy but today she is in a good mood. Especially when we tell her we are going to the park as soon as sister wakes up. I start gathering things I know we will need for the park. Extra snacks, drinks, a bottle and light jackets.  Alina wakes up soon and they play a bit before we load up in the car.

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5:00pm

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We go to our favorite park where Emma immediately heads for the swings. Her favorite is the swing meant for smaller children. For whatever reason that’s the one she likes. Today we talk her into letting Alina swing in that one.  She tries the other swings but then decides she would rather slide. Emma was too busy playing for pictures today.

6:00pm

Tonight we have to stop and get groceries on the way home. I am so glad that Jonathan is able to come with us. I wear Alina in the Ergo while Jon pushes Emma in the big , bulky shopping basket with the race car attached. He never denies her this.

6:45pm

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The girls play a bit outside with daddy while I cook a quick dinner. The days are getting shorter so it’s almost too dark outside.

7:20pm

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Dinner is messy and loud but everyone is hungry from playing at the park. Tonight it’s hamburger patties, black beans with rice and steamed broccoli. Emma devours the black beans and requests ranch dressing to which we tell her no. Alina eats a little of this and that and mostly just makes a mess on her tray.

8:00pm

Bedtime. Tonight we don’t do baths. Usually every other night. So getting ready for bed is a quick affair. Dad changes Emma and helps her brush her teeth while I change Alina and fix her last bottle. We gather in Emma’s room for bedtime prayer. We always do this when Daddy is home. Kisses and hugs all around while Jon settles into the rocker with Emma and I take Alina to her room for her bottle and snuggles.

8:20pm

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I quietly close the door to Alina’s room just as Jon quietly closes the door to Emma’s room. He stops to give me a hug in the hallway. I sit down to pump one last time for the day. After that I take a shower. While I shower Jon cleans up . Usually the dishes, trash and toys. After showering I stop in the kitchen to fix us a drink or snack. Tonight it’s lemonade for me and sweet tea for him. We both sit down in our chairs and sigh. We pick a movie to watch. Transformers. Some nights we watch our shows and sometimes we just sit in silence while we both work on our respective projects. Blog for me and app work for him.

12 midnight 

I make myself go to bed, even though I  wish could stay up longer and hang out with Jonathan. He will be up until 4am or so. Night shift. It was a good day. I put the monitor on my nightstand and hear the white noise from their rooms coming through. I close my eyes and sleep.

It was a good day.

“The days are long but the years are short”

 

 

 


Meal time favorites

mealtime favorites

Most days I feel like we spend half of our day either in the kitchen or around the table. I’m always fetching snacks and sippy cups, wiping peanut butter from bibs and brushing crumbs from high chairs and booster seats. Toddlers and babies can consume a surprising amount of food and make a not so surprising mess doing it. I’ve comprised a list of my 10 meal time favorite accessories. I’ve tried many different brands and models of things but these are what works for us. If it’s complicated to put together or store I don’t like it. I think the easier to clean the better!

Click on the item names below to see where it can be purchased. Enjoy!

1. Snap Bibs no longer avail.//2. Munchkin Bowls//3.Soft tipped Spoons//4. Training Sippy

5.Straw cups//6.Cups for Smoothies//7.Spill proof cups

8. Target Dollar spot Plates //9. Booster Seat

10. Highchair (Similar)

Weaning from the swaddle: My secret weapon

**Update: Since writing this post my daughter went on to sleep happily in the Zippy until she was 18 months. Eventually moving up to a size large. My newest daughter is using them now and we are having the same success. We love this item!

My daughter who is now almost 8 months old was a swaddle baby. I don’t mean she was a baby who enjoyed being swaddled, I mean she was a baby who HAD to be swaddled. You mamas of swaddle babies know what I’m talking about.

It started out innocently enough, swaddling her in the early weeks as moms often do with newborns. It comforts them, keeps them warm and helps contain the startle reflex from jolting them awake and the subsequent wails that follow. I don’t remember at what point exactly I realized that she was addicted to the swaddle. Maybe it was when I noticed that I was the only one who could successfully put her down for a nap. It was because of the way I was swaddling her. I guess you can call me the enabler.

By the time she was 3 months old I knew we were in trouble. I tried the gradual weaning method but that was laughable, girlfriend just could not fall asleep without her arms secured. She was like a crazy ninja with those hands. We tried a few sad naps of going cold turkey without it, too much crying for this mama. It probably would have worked eventually but I personally don’t let my little babies cry that long if I can help it.

By 5 months old she was busting out of every swaddle we owned. Did I mention that she was in the 99th% for weight? You try swaddling that. The only one that could contain her was an Aden and Anais swaddle blanket. And even that was failing us. To make matters worse I couldn’t even move her to her crib yet since she was rolling,so she was still sleeping in the Rock and Play sleeper. She was miserable, we were miserable and I didn’t know what to do.

Enter the Zipadee-zip.

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I first read about the Zipadee-zip on one of my Babycenter birthboards that I frequent. I researched it and my honest thought was “The last thing I need is another thing for my baby to get addicted to”. I put it in the back of my mind and about a week later as I was up yet again with a baby who couldn’t sleep because she was miserable. I ordered it. Right then and there, from my phone in the middle of the night. It was shipped SO fast. I was shocked and elated. I put her in it right away and she napped well. Much better than usual.

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I was expecting a miracle and while it wasn’t an overnight success it was a vast improvement from what we were used to. I originally ordered her a medium, then went back and ordered a small. After we received the small we were home free. The small was snug enough that she still felt secure. We moved her to her crib and there she has been soundly sleeping for 2 months. She knows when the zippy is put on it’s sleeping time. She has moved to a medium and is sleeping 12+ hours at night with 1 wakeup to eat. She naps 3 times a day for at least an hour. I call that a success!

I thought I would feel frustrated that she is “dependent” on the zippy to sleep. But you know what? I don’t. because it’s not hindering her in any way.  She can roll and move around. She can pick up her paci and put it in her mouth and it keeps her warm. My mind is at ease. Plus have you seen how cute the prints are on the Zipadee-zip website? I know I will have no trouble picking her out cute patterns to wear. Speaking of, I really need to order another one!

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***This was not a sponsored post. Just me sharing what really works in hopes that it will help someone.***

Items to help your baby sleep

I am convinced you could sell anything to a sleep deprived parent. The desperation you feel is at a level that cannot be described and you would do the rain dance if it promised your baby would sleep better. I have been there, I know. I know about those nights when you wonder “will they ever sleep?”, “will I ever sleep again?”. While this is NOT a post about sleep training ,it is a post with a list of items that I have found helpful in the sleep department. I don’t promise they will cure your sleep woes but give them a try if you haven’t. Also, I am here to tell you that YES, you will sleep again.

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1. A Crib. As with most things baby related there are differing opinions as to whether you need certain items and what not. We bought a crib as one of our first purchases and I am very glad we did. It was something we wanted to invest in for all of our babies to come. We bought from Target online and got a great deal (and free shipping!) on a beautiful crib. You could also find it on Amazon and get free shipping! While My babies do not sleep in the crib until they are around 5 months old, it is invaluable to have when you are ready for them to be out of your room. And trust me, the moment can come upon you  suddenly.

2. Crib Mattress. We bought a mattress similar to this one. There are about 5,876,966 mattresses out there so you have to do your research and make the best decision you can. We have bought the same mattress for both of our girls and they seem to find it really comfortable. A good mattress in very important.

3. Swaddle Wraps. For the first few weeks of Emma’s life and for the first 5 months of Alina’s ,swaddling was essential to our sleep and theirs. I loved Aden and Anais swaddle wraps because they are lightweight and have the cutest patterns. When you are through the swaddling phase they can be used as a lightweight blanket or nursing cover. There are other types of swaddle wraps out there and by all means try them! If you haven’t given swaddling an honest try, you may be missing an important key to help your baby sleep.

4. Loveys. At first I didn’t know what a lovey even was or what it’s purpose was. Both of my girls have one now and I used them in the early days as a sleep cue. When the lovey came out they knew it was time for sleeping. Or that was the idea. Now they still sleep with them and really find comfort in having their “lovey”. I have to say, please use caution. Don’t leave a sleeping baby alone with a lovey. 

5. Rock and Play Sleeper. Do yourself a favor. If your baby has reflux or even just doesn’t seem to like sleeping flat in a bassinet. Stop what you are doing and go get a RNP. You can thank me later. Both of my girls slept in this in lieu of a bassinet.

6. White Noise. I cannot say enough good about using white noise. We have used it since day one in some form or another. Either a fan, portable heater or most commonly the white noise app on my iPad. There are many different free white noise apps out there. Just choose one you like. Or if you prefer to get a portable white noise machine, that works just as well.

7. Zipadeezip– This is a new addition to my ” must haves” list. There was no need for this item with my oldest, however when when my baby was 5 months old and still addicted to the swaddle but sleeping terribly, I desperately searched for a solution. This is an ingenious product that helps your baby ease the transition between swaddle and no swaddle. She now sleeps 12+ hours at night in her zippy. See what I mean? Go get one. Read more about how I used the Zipadee-zip to transition out of the swaddle here. 

8. A swing. Like I said, sleep deprived parents will try anything. When a pregnant mom asks me what is the #1 item she needs. I say, get a swing and get a good one. Get one that looks comfortable enough to sleep in because that’s what they’ll be doing. And get one that plugs in to an electrical outlet so you don’t break the bank on batteries. My babies spent a lot of precious hours resting comfortable and happily in their swing. It saves your sanity.

These are the most important sleep items that have helped my babies sleep. I would love to hear what has helped you.