Monday, October 5, 2015

Bigger Baby Stuff Review

I wrote a pretty in-depth post a while back reviewing baby gear. I'm back again with a bigger (older) baby stuff review.

The Stroller: Chicco Liteway Plus
When I first reviewed the stroller, it was only holding Lila's infant seat. Now she sits in it facing forward like a big girl and loves it. I have a love/hate relationship with this stroller. If it wasn't my only stroller it would be only love. 
Pro: It's super lightweight, doesn't take up a lot of space in my trunk, reclines nice and low for strolling naps, etc. She seems comfy in it.
Con: The wheels. I wondered about this in my original review and my wondering was right. The front wheels don't swivel very easily anymore and don't handle good sized cracks in sidewalks. The basket is  also really small. 

Rating: 3.5 Stars

The Wagon: Radio Flyer All-Terrain Cargo Wagon
Our alternate ride is this awesome wagon. It was a gently used gift from a family friend. I strapped Chris's belt to it as a makeshift seatbelt for Lila and it's perfect for stopping at the farm stand close to our house or to roll our feeble old dog around. 
Rating: 5 Stars

Baby bathtub- Stokke Flex Bath
 Lila outgrew her Puj tub a while ago the bathtub seemed too mammoth for her so I ordered this little tub. I was so excited that it's portable, folds flat, and was nice and small. I use it on the bathroom or kitchen counters and fill it with a pitcher. I just slide it over a sink and pull the plug to drain it.

Pro: Fun for Lila to teethe on, collapsable, and small.
Con: Really expensive substitute for a kitchen sink. I fell for a gimmick. (If I didn't have a bathtub or a usable sink I would 100% recommend it!)

Rating: 3 Stars

Better choice- The kitchen sink or Patrull Bathtub Mat from Ikea

The little lady has 2 adorable bottom teeth so far so now we're on to teethers. 
She's a classic and Lila really likes her. Especially when she was smaller, before she cut her teeth.
Bendable Banana Baby Toothbrush:
This is the winner in our household. Lila loves this thing. I attached a pacifier clip to it and I clip it to her shirt when we go grocery shopping to keep her distracted and from chomping on the cart (too much)! It has lots of chewing variety too, so she loves it. 
Silicone Teething Necklace:
This is a close second to the banana. I really knew I was leaping into the mom world if I got mom jewelry, but it was necessary! I actually love the look of this necklace and Lila grabs it ALL the time. I especially wear it grocery shopping and nursing. It's important to have her attention at both! 

Vibrating Teether:
I picked this gem up at Target, at the recommendation of another mom that had just been through teething. It's hard plastic on the handle, the berries are silicone, and it vibrates if she bites the berries. She likes it but it's not our go-to. 
Amber Teething Necklace:
Some people think it's a scam, others don't. I was indifferent but figured I'd try anything to help with her pain. This is actually Lila's second necklace. I became a believer after I washed her first one in the washer on accident. I put it back on and drooling and rage ensued. I bought a new necklace and the drooling went away and the joy came back. So I'm a believer! She doesn't sleep with it on though, and that seems just fine. 

Highchair- Ikea Antilop 
Lila's cheap-o highchair is one of my favorite purchases. We use it without the tray so Lila can "help" cook
She also loves to be at table level for her reading (!) and to eat at the table with us
And the tray is really easy to hose off. I highly recommend the insert to help prop the baby up a bit. We still use it daily and I take it out only when I anticipate Lila is going to make a crazy mess and I don't feel like doing laundry. I talk more about it in this post
Rating: 5 Stars

Diapers: BumGenius, Flip, Kawaii, and Honest
I've branched out in my cloth diapering. I still primarily use BumGenius all in ones. Lila's at a point where she has almost graduated to the next rise and I'm having issues with sizing. She is a tummy sleeper and I'm having leaks on her stomach after a long nap, and side leaks occasionally. I'm hoping it's temporary while we figure out how to adjust the size as she grows. They're easy to wash and still look 100% perfect. I've picked up a few more during a seconds sale too.  
I also got a few Kawaii pocket diapers. I LOVE them and the fit! I also am a big fan of my Flips.
 We are still using Honest diapers at night. Lila outgrew the only bundle we ordered when we were only half way through it. I was wowed by Honest's customer service when they did a free, fast, exchange for the next size up for us. With Lila belly sleeping, and sleeping a 10 hour stretch, they do leak overnight though. I use a cloth diaper cover over them to keep this from happening. Once we finish them up I'll probably convert to cloth overnight. I do keep disposables in my diaper bag for when she is being babysat to reduce the caregiver's learning curve.

Baby Carrier: Ergo
I am THRILLED to have bought an Ergo! I think it's so comfortable now that Lila's heavier. 
I pop the hood up and walk when she is beyond tired and needs a nap. Chris loves to wear it too. This was definitely worth the hunt and waiting  and watching on eBay. 
Rating: 5 Stars

Mesh Crib Bumpers:
Lila started getting trapped limbs so I busted out the mesh bumpers I'd registered for. 
I'm a minimilist, so I kept them off as long as possible. I didn't mind the look once I got it up though. Unfortunately, they seemed to just be something Lila would use to prop her legs up when she put them through the bars! She was also using them to pull herself up. I ended up using them for a couple of weeks and then packed them away. To me it was more important for Lila to learn how to get her limbs back out of the bars when possible. 
Rating: 3 Stars

Infantino Squeeze Station:
 I did a hybrid of baby led weaning and some purees
I've ended up not using many of the purees since Lila seems to like grabbing the food herself. But, they were crazy easy to use and the things like applesauce are great for traveling. I'm almost through all of the pouches that I made but do plan making more apple sauces for us to use out and about and banana oatmeal to speed up my mornings.
Rating: 5 Stars

Playpen: Journey Bee Play Yard:
I had my heart set on the Baby Bjorn travel crib or the Lotus travel crib. Unfortunately, neither got snatched off of my registry and I lost a few eBay auctions. I wasn't willing to lay down hundreds of dollars for something I didn't plan on using Then I found this guy for 1/3 of the price. 

Pros: Lightweight, super easy set up and take down, flat package make storing it under a bed easy. Seems strong. I like the two dark sides. It makes putting a baby to sleep easier since they can't track you from all 4 sides. Lila seems to like it.  
Cons: The velcro sheet sticks to itself, making it nearly impossible to apply smoothly. The storage bag/shape is tall and awkward with the strap placement. Walking with it on your shoulder isn't really an option. I wanted something with a small footprint. The inside is the size I pictured but the outside fans out really far to add stability. I wouldn't order it again based on that. 
Rating: 3 Stars

I started with a couple of Skip Hop tuck away bibs that were adorable. Unfortunately they couldn't stand up to wet and her shirts would be all wet after eating and drinking. I think these are more for baby cereal and foods that we fast forwarded past.
4 Stars if you use baby food

Baby Bjorn Soft Bib:
I am in love with these things. They catch everything and tighten nicely to keep things from leaking. I was able to get a two pack as part of an open box special on Amazon. 
Rating: 5 Stars

Baby Gate: Munchkin Easy-Close Metal Safety Gate:
I'm so glad we got this one! I also found it as part of an open box special on Amazon and got it for about $10 less than normal.

Pro: Easy to install, holds up great to pressure, slamming, etc. You can lock it so it only swings in, out, or not at all.
Con: The bar at the bottom makes me afraid of tripping and falling to my death.

So that's the latest update on baby stuff in our house!

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