Do you live in the LA area? Are you pregnant or do you have a baby? Are you looking for a place to register or to shop for some new baby products? Or maybe you have a present to buy for a little one between the ages of newborn – 3 years old?
Seeing as my last post was about toys for 0 – 6 months, I figure its only appropriate to follow with toys for 7 – 24 months. Up until 6 months old, babies focus on developing their fine motor skills . Between 6 – 24 months of age, they also practice gross motor skills, such as crawling, toddling, walking, running, kicking and jumping. I know 7 – 24 months is a huge range, but once baby starts crawling, standing and walking, a lot of toys tend to grow with baby’s development.
Right now Charlie’s favorite activity is music – any time he sees a maraca, a tambourine or an egg shaker, he must shake it. Emptying out a basket and refilling it or taking books off of a bookshelf and flipping through the pages are a close second.
I got an email earlier this week from someone looking to create a gift basket for a baby shower. They wanted to know what toys I would recommend for Newborns through the age of 6 months. First of all, thank you so much for the email! I feel honored that you are reading my blog and have asked me for advice. Here’s my list of great toys for babies age 0 – 6 months.
I am known amongst some of my friends as the mom who has every toy under the sun. I’ll admit I have an online shopping addiction. It all started with boredom during late night breast feedings. Since then, Diapers.com and Amazon Mom have become my best friends. I feel this confession qualifies me as a mom who knows about toys.
We first tried to put Charlie in exersaucer when he was 4 months old. He didn’t really care for it at that time. Mostly, it just bought me some time to run to the bathroom or make some lunch. At 6 months, that all changed. The exersaucer became one of his favorite activities.
We have the Evenflo ABC Exersaucer. He likes it. We have tried the Fisher Price Rainforest Bouncer at a friend’s house. He LOVED that. Charlie is also more of a dare devil than some other babies. He loves to be thrown in the air and bounced up and down. In fact, the harder you bounce him (obviously, within the parameters of being safe) the happier he is. Anyway, here is a video of him in the exersaucer. At this point I can probably get about 15 – 20 minutes of time before he wants to get out of here and move on to the next activity.
Mini Sleep sheep to attach to their car seats – We use a noise machine in Charlie’s room because it stays on all night. The mini sleep sheep is perfect for car seats. It stays on for up to 45 minutes and is a perfect way to get baby to sleep.
Swing– our My Little Lamb swing has saved our life. No joke. He slept in it for the first weeks and takes a nap in it every day.
Car seat swing– if you get a Graco car seat I recommend the Graco Snuglider Swing. The seat simply snaps into the swing, which is great if you get home while they are still sleeping and need the motion to stay asleep. It is also good when you know you are going to go out but they are about to go down for a nap. Just strap them in their seat and put them in the swing. Speaking of car seats, I do not suggest getting the grago snugride 32. There is no point. I don’t think we are going to keep Charlie in his car seat up to 32 lbs. It just makes the whole thing too heavy. I think the graco snugride 28 will save your arms.
Diaper Dekor (or something similar for smelly diapers). Problem with Diaper Dekor is that you have to use their bags. With other kinds, you can use tall kitchen bags. Otherwise I am happy with the Diaper Dekor though.
Glider/Ottoman for feeding, etc. – I recommend one that reclines for when your little bean falls asleep on you. Sometimes, you are just gonna want to take a nap too.
Exersaucer/Jumperoo (4 months+)
Itz Been – it’s a timer for feeding, diaper changes, naps, etc. – I love it. That way, you don’t have to write everything down – especially in the middle of the night. You will either love this or hate this. I am a control freak so I loved it at first then I felt like it was controlling me.
Bath Luv Frog – to cover baby with in the bath – only available at Babies R Us online. You could also just use washcloths. You basically use this over their tummy to keep them warm and just keep rewetting it.
Bumbo and tray – Charlie is just starting to use this now. Although not to freak you out but the occupational therapist said that these are horrible for their spine.
Bouncer seat – we did not get this and I regret it. You can bounce with your foot or hand and it is great to keep them propped up after eating to help prevent spit ups. If they do have refulx, it can even go in the crib.
Swaddle Me – we used these for swaddling – I love them!! So much easier to deal with in the middle of the night than a real swaddle. When he got older and strong we cut a whole in the sack so his feet would not push off the swaddle.
Baby Bjorn Active, Ergo Baby and Moby wrap- we seriously used all of these. Moby for the newborn stage but it can be overwhelming bc it has 6 feet of fabric. The ergo is amazing because he will almost always fall asleep in it. It is great for some hands free time and it blocks out stimulation yet keeps him close. The Bjorn is great for us for when Charlie wants to face out and enjoy the world. You can also face in with the Bjorn but Charlie doesn’t like to.
Here is another popular mat that isn’t so in your face
Bumper– we are using a “breathable bumper”. We had a cute one at first but switched when he started moving all over the crib.
Video monitor – this thing saved us. We didn’t feel the need to always run in when Charlie was crying. We could see that he was fine and just working something out in the monitor. People will tell you not to waste your money but I 100% disagree that it is a waste. It just gives you piece of mind which is sometimes hard to come by as a new parent.
Dreft/Dreft Stain Remover – to wash baby’s clothes. Regular detergent is too harsh for baby.
Bottle Warmer – we had a “Munchkin” one – hated it. We just use hot water at this point.
Diaper bag – I love my skip hop diaper bag because it is like a purse. I can wear it out even when I don’t need it for a diaper bag.
Strollers – I am bad for advice on this one. I havethe Bob (great for jogging), theCity Mini(super easy to fold and light) and the Uppa Baby (it has a bassinet and 5 reclining positions when the seat is attached). I love them all for different reasons.
Rock n Play sleeper– Charlie slept in this for the first 4 months (well 2 – 4 bc we found it later). It is also great to transport room to room or even to take to a friend’s house because it can fold down. We use it to hold him when we go in the shower.
Scissors, not nail clippers. Everyone I know has cut their baby’s skin with nail clippers. Get the scissors that are curved. It makes cutting their nails so easy.
Car seat adapter – instead of a snap and go that you will only use the first 6 mos or so, you can buy an adapter for your stroller so that you can place the car seat on it. I don’t know if the Uppa Baby has a car seat adaptor or not.
Changing table for upstairs and downstairs - or you can use the couch or floor, but we like having a changing area in both places.
Winkle – this toy is seriously all the rage. EVERY baby we know loves it. For use at about 3 – 4 months.
Baby Flash Cards: Black and white and sometimes red for the baby to look at
Car seat toy – Charlie loves this now that he is older. We clip it on to everything to keep him entertained (chairs with arms, his changing table downstairs, his car seat, etc)
Munchkin Wipes Warmer- We tried the Munchkin and the Prince Lionheart warmers. The Munchkin is much easier to use and doesn’t require upkeep.
I understand that products change all of the time and there may be new or improved versions of what I have included here once you see this list. These are just my opinions based on my experience. If you do not have a lot of space, many of these products are not a necessity. They are just nice to have.
Feel free to add to the list or comment on products you may or may not like from my list.