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One of my biggest concerns when I found out I was pregnant was how many items babies need. Rob and I both try to avoid having “stuff” and I was worried that baby items would infiltrate our house – which they have – and never be used. With all the recommendations I read online, or chatted about with family and friends, I was skeptical about some of their suggested baby must haves.
Since Zoey was about 6 months old, we have been using these items constantly. As I was writing out each description, I found myself wanting to write, “We literally use this everyday.” I thought that would be redundant, so just know that we literally use each item in this list every day (See what I did there?).
Cloud b Gentle Giraffe Sound Machine This little guy was a gift from my mom for Zoey and it has quickly become a bedtime staple. We have fondly named it Gerald after one of Zoey’s favorite books – Giraffes Can’t Dance. This little guy is also the item that my sister, Kate, had two of for her son, one at daycare and one at home because it was so essential to him when sleeping.
Evenflo Exersaucer Bounce & Learn – As Zoey gets bigger, she wants to be an independent woman as much as possible. Being able to move around and “stand” in her ExerSaucer makes her super happy. We often put her in this toy to play while we do chores around the house. It keeps Zoey entertained for at least 20-30 minutes. Plenty of time to get some things done and provide our little lady with feelings of independence.
BABYBJORN Bouncer Balance Soft – My sister, Kate, recommended this bouncy chair to me and gifted it to us for my baby shower. As a bit of a minimalist, I was hesitant to have another thing in the house, but this is a vital piece of our baby equipment. From birth to now, this has been one of Zoey’s favorite spots to be. We can put it anywhere – in the kitchen while cooking, in the bathroom while I’m showering, outside on the patio – it’s ideal and a definite must have.
Nuby Icybite Hard/Soft Teething Keys – This gift from Grandma Marie is one of Zoey’s absolute favorite toys. The textures, the moveable parts, and the ability to put it in the fridge to cool down make it a winner. Any time Zoey sees them, she reaches for them with laser focus. For a teething baby, I cannot recommend these Nuby keys enough.
Board Books – As active readers (though less now with Zoey), Rob and I are trying to instill an early love of books in Zoey. Reading a few books is part of our nightly routine, and now that she can grab, regular pages are out. For my baby shower, my hostess asked guests to bring a book instead of a card. As a result, we have a whole bookshelf full of all sorts of books. Our plethera of board books keep Zoey, and us, entertained with a rotation of fun stories to read.
Munchkin Soft-Tip Infant Spoon – Learning to eat is tough, and messy, work! Since Zoey is taking after both her mom and dad, she is becoming fiercely independent when it comes to meal time. Spoon feeding her purees only last about 4-5 weeks. Now, she grabs at the spoon to try to feed herself. Usually, she ends up missing her mouth, waving the spoon around, and smacking it around on her tray. Get some soft spoons. In fact, get two packs because you will most likely go through three a day.
Boon Lawn Countertop Drying Rack If you are using bottles in any capacity, I cannot recommend this cute drying rack enough. Not being one to want to spend money on nonessentials, I hemmed and hawed about this for a week or two. Once we had it in our kitchen, I berated myself for how long it took me to purchase it. Bottles dry quickly, it’s easy to clean, and it is not an eyesore on the countertop.
A Great Stroller – Graco Fastaction Fold Jogger Click Connect Travel System, Gotham 2015 – As a runner, I knew I wanted a durable running stroller. Rob and I researched strollers for a week and settled on this Graco version, which my parents gifted to us. We considered the Bob, the leader in running strollers, but read that it was not ideal for taller parents or babies. With this stroller, Rob can reach the handle, our feet don’t hit the storage area, and it turns insanely easily.
Baby Food Freezer Tray with a Watertight Lid – When Zoey started purees, it was both exciting and a bit heartbreaking. Our little lady was growing up! Instead of buying multiple pre-made pouches each day, I took to making Zoey’s purees. It is super easy with the use of a handheld blender and silcone freezer trays. Just mix the food to the right consistency and load into the trays. I stored the cubes in labeled baggies and put a few in a tupperware for her each day for daycare. They were melted and ready for her by the time lunch rolled around.
Matimati Baby Bandana Bib Set – Zoey has always been a bit of a drooly mess. We tend to go through at least 3 onesies every day after she has soaked through the front of each one. These bandiditos are a lifesaver. Not only are they adorable, but they prevent us from having to change her outfit every few hours. Now, we just have to change her bandidto every few hours, which is much easier than trying to dress a squirmy little one.
RQ: What are some of your 6-8 month essentials?1