Tottini & GGC Present: Must-Have Baby Gear and Giveaway!

*updated with winner, below!*
IMG_7035
gear ye, gear ye!

I'm super excited to be teaming up with Tottini.com for the next few weeks both here on GGC and on tottini.com, re: latest must-haves for newborn and baby. For those unfamiliar with Tottini, they're a small mom-owned and operated store + web destination offering the latest and greatest essentials for newborns and beyond. Brands and designers include Ouef, Monte, Stokke, Maclaren, bloom, Medela and more. Basically, Tottini is a one-stop shop for quality goods for baby, child and parent. And the owners (Hi, Melissa and Melissa!) are super rad.

As well as partnering with Tottini on this and other posts, I'm also a customer. Remember those hairclub for men ads? Yeah, that. The following post wasn't paid for, but Tottini did generously hook me up with some of my must-have gear items. (Noted, below.) Thanks, Tottini!

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There are SO many things one needs when baby-rearing and even though this is my third pregnancy, I have little in the way of gear to show for hand-me-downs. I'm the opposite of a hoarder and tend to give everything away as soon as it's no longer in use, so I'm basically at square one as an expecting mom. Which is annoying but also kind of fun. Anyway! The following pieces are some of my must-have gear essentials for the soon-to-be newborn(s) in my life. Behold:

Treetop Activity Gym
I happen to love this Baby Gym because it's cute without being obnoxious. One of the few of its kind in the Baby Gym department, which for whatever reason, insist on being hideous. I love that it's gender neutral and isn't PINK FOR GIRLS! or BLUE FOR BOYS! Instead it's just cute for everyone. Dig.


Triumph Stroller 2011

When Archer was a baby, I knew nothing of strollers. For the first few months I pushed around a massive Graco Travelsystem. That was massive. After a few months of knocking people over, we took the Graco to my parent's house to use as a spare and snagged ourselves a Maclaren. It folded up like an umbrella (hence the term, "umbrella stroller", had plenty of storage and we all lived happily ever after. This time around, we're rocking a Snap n' Go for the first few months and then we're going double Mac. Because, even though we're upgrading our wagon to a Minivan, six people and two dogs will BARELY fit in that beast so the most packable stroller is kind of a total must. Also, one of my besties has one for her (Irish) twins and claims it absolutely fits through doorways and hallways, which, again... very important.


Twin Triumph

And speaking of strollers, Snap n Go's are my #1 recommendation for the first six months:


Clic it! Universal Carrier

The price is right and they're the most practical things that exist. I just ordered my double snap (via my search, Baby Trend is the only brand that makes them) and will use it exclusively in the beginning as not to be constantly pulling babes in and out of carseats. There are several fab "universal" carriers out there - make sure the one you order fits your carseat(s).


Go & Glow Audio Monitor Set

Anyone remember when Baby Monitors were just things you put by the crib to hear your baby cry from another room? Yeah, those were the days. Apparently, today, in the year 2011, monitors now double as television video-recorder-x-ray-vision-bomb-detectors. You know... just in case. The Safety First monitor is right up our WTF-is-all-that-really-necessary? alley. Besides, I'd rather spend the hundred-bucks saved on monitor devices and splurge on a really slick portable bed. Ahem... this:

Portable Bed: Phil & Teds Nest, $99

Nest


I haven't purchased this because I don't think it's safe for twins. It definitely maxes out its capacity at one human child, but how awesome is it? Especially for those of us who do lots of traveling and/or like to keep baby close. I never liked porta-cribs because of their humungousness. This "nest" is ideal for those with smaller spaces or those looking for a travel bed for babies. (Nest is for newborns to nine-month-olds.)


Wide Neck Baby Bottles

I've only purchased ten of what I assume will be 78928312893 bottles, but Green to Grow are some of our favorites. They're cute and they were Fable's brand of choice when she was drinking out of a bottle. And by "was" I mean "is". Because sometimes a lady needs a bottle before nap time.



Lawn Drying Rack

We bought ourselves two of these suckers because, A. they're totally adorable and B. uh... yeah, we're going to need them. In the words of Hal, "I don't mind spending a few extra bucks on a dry rack when it LOOKS LIKE GRASS HOW COOL IS THIS?" Bonus? When we're done using them to dry bottles, they can TOTALLY double as Barbie's (eco-friendly) backyard.


Infant Dishwasher Basket
For the first time EVER we will be able to wash bottles in our dish washer which is very luxurious after living ten years (and two babies) without one so we bought a couple of these as well.


Harmony Breastpump

I used an electric pump ONCE and I haaaaaaaaaaaa(infinity a)ted it. Not only did I feel like a dairy cow, but it sucked. No pun intended. I remember calling my mom and being like, "Mom! I hate these! Nothing is even coming out and I feel like I'm hooked up to a machine and what is happening to my life!???" and she was like, "buy a manual pump! they work much better." So I did. With both babies I pumped with my own BARE HANDS and no electric sockets. Medela just happens to be my brand of choice. Highly recommended for those who don't have $500 to spend on a pump and/or prefer not to feel dairy-cowesque. Bonus: manual pumps are fantastic work-outs for lower arm enthusiasts.



Nursing Cover (more colors)
I still have my Bebe Au Lait nursing cover from the days of nursing Fable (score!) and I love it. Highly recommended.


Backpack Owl
Backpack Fox

Several of you commented on Fable's backpack when I posted about her first day of school. We purchased her penguin at a gift shop of a local museum but Tottini ALSO has them for sale, as well as the Owl & Fox (above) which I ordered for the twins to keep their things separate. Keeping a "baby pack" is really helpful for me. Beyond having a diaper bag (which I am still shopping around for) small backpacks I'm assuming will be ideal for twins with different needs, preferences in bottles, pacifiers, etc. This way I can keep their things separate (one backpack beneath each stroller seat). Plus, they're goddamn adorable.

Baby Carrier: Ergo Baby (organic) carrier, $145 c/o Tottini:

Nautilus

As well as pushing my babies in a Snap n Go + lightweight stroller for the first few months, I plan to wear one baby at a time as much as I can. This way, I can bond with the babies as individuals. I carried both Archer (Baby Bjorn) and Fable (Baby Hawk) on my bod for the first several months but have heard nothing but fantastic things about the Ergo and look forward to giving it a spin, soon. (ED: Don't forget the infant insert!)

Bare Naked Pillow

Regardless of whether or not you plan to nurse, Boppy pillows are awesome. They're supportive, comfortable and easy to clean, wash, love. We have two and I keep envisioning the babies propped up in their Boppys staring at each other, reading each other's MINDSSSSS! There are also a million fabulous Etsy shops with Boppy covers to fit your taste and style. So buy bare now and deck it out later.

Babysitter Brown & Beige


This identical bouncer was what Fable lived in her first six months. We didn't have a lot of room in our apartment, so we'd sit out on the patio and I'd write and she'd bounce and giggle and throw her rattle and I'd go chase it, pick it up, dust it off, give it back to her. We have one for now and will likely purchase a second, depending on how much either (or both) twins enjoy a good afternoon bounce. What I love about this bouncer? It's been passed around among friends and is still in amazing shape. Totally timeless and gender neutral and practical and yes.

Wait! There's more! Tottini has agreed to give one Baby Bjorn bouncer ($180 value) to a lucky GGC reader. To win? Tell me about your must-have baby GEAR items. I'll select one winner via random.org next Friday, August 5th. Good luck and thanks in advance for sharing! Still in baby shop mode, so it's super helpful to hear what gear is near and dear to you.

GGC

P.S. Shop Tottini now through September 31st and receive 10% of your total purchase by entering code: child10 at the register. Happy shopping!

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Congrats to commenter #46, Kelly! And thanks to all for participating in the giveaway! Many more giveaways to come, stay tuned!


441 comments:

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Leigh | 3:21 PM

Sophie the Giraffe was my son's favorite thing. He loved clutching it when he was a baby and it really helped him through teething later.

Stephanie | 3:21 PM

I don't have any babies yet, but I'm ready now and hoping that my husband will soon jump on board. (That's not a euphemism.. or is it?! *wink*)
I'm bookmarking this post in the meantime!

Isahrai | 3:31 PM

I've 2 months to go before my first is born but had the absolute pleasure of carrying around a friend's 5 month old almost all weekend in a Beco and it worked like a dream... Helped my late stage pregnancy posture as well!!!

Eryn Marie | 3:33 PM

Burp cloths!! Never enough. and the bumbo, I love the little lavendar bumbo I got my best friend!

L.L. | 3:48 PM

I loved my snap & go as well. I got one to avoid the bulky travel system deal as well. Happy I did, plus spent a whole lot less $.

Hyatt | 3:51 PM

I would have to say our Fischer Price Lamb Swing. It seemed to be the only "soothing" item of baby gear my son seemed to like. The pack n play and the other stuff that had the so-called soothing vibarations were a bust.

JachiCue | 3:53 PM

The moby baby carrier. It helped me be able to get dishes done. Amazing.

Robin | 3:54 PM

Ooh, great giveaway! I second that the medela harmony and the ergo were total essentials. Also halo sleep sacks and aiden and anais blankets.

Andrea | 3:54 PM

I don't have kids, but if I did, I think my must-have gear would be noise canceling headphones. For the really loud times and sleep training.

Z | 4:00 PM

must-have: medela pump-in-style advanced breast pump!

Marnina | 4:00 PM

A king size bed, for sure! We love our Beco carrier too.

MJB | 4:03 PM

I love my ergo. It's so comfortable and can be put on in a snap. Baby girl likes it too.

Z | 4:07 PM

current must-haves for my 2 month old = boppy newborn lounger, baby bjorn, and bouncy seat!

Anna | 4:10 PM

I'd have to say swaddling blankets and my new pretty Ergo carrier. Can't wait!

alissa | 4:24 PM

i LOVE our boon grass drying rack!
hialissa@gmail.com

Larry & Tara | 4:26 PM

Baby gear must have Baby bjorn

Brandee | 4:26 PM

I use the Ergo and infant insert every day. You will LOVE it! Aden + Anais blankets are a must. Maybe a Little Giraffe luxe blanket too? My son can't sleep without his

Yay for discount codes!!

Abby G | 4:33 PM

A play-yard gym is a babys first form of entertainment-- must have to stimulate those 1mo olds!
&& steal a few Nuks from the hospital... those little green paci's are awesome!

Anonymous | 4:39 PM

ohhhhhh i would love to win that bouncer- i'm on baby #4 and have no seat for hers somehow after all these babies!
essential gear is huge aden a+ anis cotton baby blankets- i have about 10 of them- perfect for swaddling, laying on, covering up when nursing, shading the stroller or baby carrier, light weigh so not too hot in so cal. perfect item and get better the more you wash them

Andi | 4:40 PM

Call me evil, but I LOOVVVEEDDD a good pacifier when my son was screaming for seemingly no reason. I'm hoping #2 doesn't scream, but.. you know. The best laid plans...

jess weliwitigoda | 4:42 PM

My must, must, must have is already on your list, but so necessary. My #2 is almost three months and lives in the ergo (with infant insert). She loves it, and it allows me to chase after #1. I've tried so many brands, but the ergo, while not the cutest, is by far the best.

www.kimonobaby.blogspot.com

jlo | 4:54 PM

Just starting my protocol to receive a donor egg, fingers crossed that I will soon be looking to make such a cool list of must haves!

nicole | 4:55 PM

the moby wrap. oh, the moby wrap! I could write an ode to its stretchy, supportive, swaddle-for-big-people-and-baby-togetherness. it's teh awesome. also? when they're little, it can hold twins.

sonja | 5:01 PM

We have that playmat and I LOVE THE HELL OUT OF IT. Oh man, my son is OBSESSED with the shaky bird toy.

My #1 must-have (and I see I was beaten to it) was the Aden & Anais swaddle blankets. Seriously saved my sanity in the first few weeks!

#2 (which you already have covered) would be the Ergo. Love the hell out of that thing.

Heidi | 5:12 PM

29 weeks with my first - so my must haves are pretty much everything! Very helpful post and comments.

fancyfish13 at yahoo dot com

Tyler | 5:27 PM

Must be my Aden&Anais swaddles.. they are so soft and can be used as a impromptu diaper.. ya know, when you need one :)

Becky | 5:38 PM

Oh, How I LOVED my Ergo...I didn't get it till Baby #2 was 4 months old, but I wish I had had it with my first. what a lifesaver!! Somedays it was the only way I got dinner on the table, or my older son dropped off to preschool.
Also, a good bouncer without a huge footprint (still looking for one). sometimes baby just needs to be off the floor and off YOU in a safe place that doesn't take up your entire kitchen table.

Also, burp rags. the old fashioned, prefold diaper kind. I have 40. My kids are pukers (and it's not reflux...I have had the prediatrician check 4 million times). n I assuming my Baby #3 due in January will be more of the same where this is concerned. Would love a new Ergo, only because mine old one has some spit up stains I can't get rid of.

Katie V | 5:45 PM

Our cradle swing for sure. My Clara naps in hers every single days for hours on end. And the Aden and Anais swaddling blankets that I swaddle her in when I put her in that swing are also a must.

Courtney | 5:48 PM

I just had baby three and I would say my must have has always been a good swaddling blanket. Once the babes are burritofied they calm right down and out they go.

cALyPsO | 5:52 PM

I used the pack n play with the changing table attachment. It was AWESOME those first couple months. I kept all baby boy's clothes in the pack n play, stored all his toys and things when it was night time and it held all his wipes and diapers beautifully. When you're not using it, just fold it up and store it under the bed and you're good to go.. Also helpful to cart around..

ona | 6:04 PM

Beco baby carrier and wrap style carrier. both have been essential with my 2nd daughter, because I spend a lot of time chasing my first:)I would love a bouncy chair!

larsello@yahoo.com

In Due Time | 6:06 PM

Such cute things! Love that bottle rack!

laura | 6:20 PM

I love this Baby Care Timer.. keeps track of the last time I fed, napped, changed or WHATEVER.. so tired & sleep deprived me doesn't have to :D

http://www.amazon.com/Itzbeen-Baby-Care-Timer-Blue/dp/B000MEB3GE

Mariel | 6:22 PM

I think my top baby gear item will be a breast pump (type yet to be determined). I'm expecting my first child, and I will have to return to work full time after 6 weeks of leave.

Anonymous | 6:30 PM

I have a 3 week old and I love my halo sleep sack for newborns! My son sleeps 5 hours straight in that thing!

Beth | 6:32 PM

must haves i think - baby bjorn - made grocery shopping soo much easier. and in the super early days - a good swing. expecting #2 in february, so would love the awesome bouncer. last one we had was a loaner!

Shalyn | 6:33 PM

Love the adorable backpacks. I loved my baby bjorn carrier for my first born and look forward to using with my second :)

Lauren | 6:39 PM

I am newly pregnant (13 weeks) with my first, so I don't yet know what is essential! My MIL swears by NUK pacifiers, and my friend (with a one year old) swears by sleeping gowns. I have about six months before I find out what my little one thinks is essential gear!

The Pimple Whisperer | 6:46 PM

I'm at 17 weeks with my first, so like many here, I'm still trying to figure out what is essential! This list has been soooo helpful!

lisa | 7:02 PM

My friend who is a nutritionist gave me one of these for my first baby and it has been one of my most useful baby things.

http://www.amazon.com/Munchkin-13701-Baby-Food-Grinder/dp/B000GB0NZA

Also, I am a twin and I clearly remember my sister and I as babies in our crib "talking" and we understood one another. Maybe that makes me sound nuts, but I believe that memory.

caley22 | 7:34 PM

I LOVE my Boba organic baby carrier. I tried several different carriers, and happily settled with this one. When they are teeny tiny, love the Moby Wrap as well for around the house.

c a l e y 2 2 @ h o t m a i l . c o m

Renee | 7:55 PM

The best breast pump money can buy

stacey | 7:57 PM

Another vote for Aidan and Anais swaddle blankets/bug covers/etc., etc.! Love them, especially in hot weather.

Stef | 8:06 PM

No favorites or must-haves yet, but this post will be helpful later this year after we start trying to conceive (did I really just type that? eep!).

Megan | 8:15 PM

I'm a newbie at this but the things that I've HAD TO purchase before my baby shower have been: my balboa nursing pillow, my moby wrap and I'll likely get a Becco or something similar.

There seem to be way more things we're NOT getting to start with than there are things we ARE getting!

Liesel | 8:20 PM

I'm not pregnant but trying through the long and arduous IVF process. As such, I don't have many suggestions for baby gear because I don't want to jinx us by assuming it will work. That said, I have a friend who is pregnant with twins (IVF) and right behind you. She has a toddler and highly recommends the Orbit carseats. They swivel! Which means no bending and climbing for parents. Yahoo!

Margo | 8:46 PM

What a fantastic giveaway! My favorite baby gear so far (I have a 17 month old and we're planning for number 2) are my BOB jogging stroller and my box of books. Both of them seam to sooth Adaline by shear suggestion. Actually, they both calm me down, too :)
*Right now her favorite book is Go Dog Go, which was my favorite book for years. I have yet to get tired of reading it repeatedly.

MelissaHall | 8:48 PM

I have an Ergo for my 18 month old so I can chase my 5 year old so when baby 3 comes in March I will be set!

This post was my favorite ever, though, because you linked to the post about Fable's bottle and I so needed that. Thank you. Everyone is making me crazy about my baby still having hers but she is so fiercely independent, has no favorite "lovely" and cuddles when she drinks that bottle. I have no desire to take that away! Thank you.

Mindi | 8:50 PM

My must have is our cloth diapers. We use the fuzzibunz one size diapers and I LOVE them so much. I love not having to make emergency runs to the store for diapers and the cost savings are amazing. not to mention that I just can't get enough of my little ones adorable fluffy bum:)

Teeka | 8:51 PM

You covered most of my must haves- including the bouncer I would love to win. What I'm shopping for now is literal must haves: cloth diapers and a car seat. I'm eyeing the Combi Coccoro- such pretty colors!

meghandrew(at)mac(dot)com

Mrs. H | 8:57 PM

The Ergo carrier is freaking amazing. Supportive, light, easy (even to get a toddler in on my back without help!), and wonderful to have my munchkin close.

jackie | 9:02 PM

The medela manual pump was one essential item in my experience! Could not have gotten by the first year without it! There were lots of other little things too, swaddlers (miracle blanket) and carriers (ergo was our favorite), also loved my baby bath wash (earth mamma angel baby)... I could go on and on with must-haves! Wonder if they will change for baby #2...

Cat | 9:08 PM

We wouldn't have survived the first five months without our papasan swing for our reflux-y, independent little girl. She LOVED being in that swing, even more than being more than my arms. I was slightly jealous of the swing, but I also panicked when I thought the batteries were anywhere near getting low!

Lin Snow | 9:28 PM

I can't say enough good things about our Wee Urban sleep sacks. They are comfy soft bamboo/organic cotton blend, come in ADORABLE designs, and are incredibly comfortable for baby. I love how the zipper goes around the edge so baby won't lie on zippers or snaps if she rolls to her belly. I bought two of these so we have a spare if one gets suddenly dirty. I seriously wish they made adult sizes. LOVE these. Plus they're made in my country, Canada!

http://www.weeurban.com/item_3/h2Wee-Dreams-Trendz-Collectionh2.htm

HollyB | 9:55 PM

I carried my son in a sling until he was 9 months old. It was the only way to get him to sleep! I also used the Moby, Bjorn, and Ergo. It's good to have choices!!

Sadie's Mama | 10:19 PM

We love our BOB stroller. It is so important to get out of the house and roam the world.

Sullivan Family Blog | 10:32 PM

My MUST HAVE is our excer-saucer, or as we love to call it our "circle of neglect." Our little man doesn't spend a ton of time in it, but just enough for me to do one of the following: make lunch, eat lunch or put on my make up. He is four months old and is just starting to play with toys and loves when he can make it make a sound.

mckechniem @ yahoo dot ca

marissa welch | 10:39 PM

OMG! BOUNCY SEAT! My must-have baby thing is a 45" x 45" giant piece of hemmed flannel that a girlfriend made for me. Best swaddling blanket ever! My first child was born in November in Oregon and it was very cold. That blanket kept him snuggly and warm all Winter. Baby number two is currently baking and will likely be born in November in Oregon (same due date, six years later, WTF?!). Good thing I saved that blanket!

Miranda | 10:45 PM

I think the Boppy might just be my must have item. It was so great for nursing/bottle feeding or just to give my arms a little help after days of holding 9 pounds 24/7. We have two that I'll be dusting off this winter.

Darcy | 11:11 PM

You covered a lot of it! the snap and go and the Ergo were my faves! Other must haves? an awesome rocker! my dutalier, couldn't live without. Also loved nursing bras from pea in the pod and bibs from mighty nest! you can just wipe them clean!

Crystal | 11:48 PM

I love my Ergo and Aden & Anais swaddle blankets!

Kathryn | 11:57 PM

Aug. 5th is my birthday, so if that helps...My lifesaver were nipple shields for breastfeeding if you have thrush, an injury or an infection. If that's too personal, then I'd go with the hooter-hider and the tip that anywhere you go shopping has dressing rooms. Skip the bathroom or open-air couches when you're a noobie and hide out in a private stall while you struggle with your newborn. A double jogging stroller was also my go-to item because no one would feel left out and I could go outside and feel free as a bird! With child #3 in the works, outside freedom will be crucial for me.
And Tottini, excellent work! As I scrolled down I kept thinking, there's no way that cuteness can be topped, and BAM! Another awesome item that actually made me think, "I want that!"

OneRadMother | 4:37 AM

We did the full-on need-everything-for-the-bebe the first time around. Most of the stuff was a waste. I did love our bjorn carrier - used it until we couldn't. We are still using our Jeep Jogging Stroller - small, doorway friendly, and encourages a good workout. This next time around we will def. be cutting back.

Anabelle Tess | 6:04 AM

If I had to recommand one thing, it would be a nursing pillow. It is a must-have (or your can make yourself one, since it is quite expensive) because it's better to be comfortable while you nurse your baby, especially in the beginning when baby wakes up very often at night.
I got mine from a lovely French brand called "Ava & Mr Joe", they have a website.

More about it on my blog here:
http://pregnancyjoyandotherthings.blogspot.com/2011/03/at-home.html

jesse k | 6:13 AM

I need a bouncy seat desperately. I gave mine away, got pregnant again and they are life savers!

Tirzah Hochreiter | 6:20 AM

The one thing I MUST HAVE for this baby is an Ergo. A friend of mine let me borrow hers for a trip we took out to San Francisco when my daughter was coming close to 2, and I LOVED it and wished I had had one the entire time! They are great quality and easy to use :)

17 beats. | 6:25 AM

i am having my first in October ... i have NO IDEA what my must-have item is ! but i want it to be that bouncer !

bethany | 6:31 AM

My must haves are similar to yours. My must have stroller is the Bugaboo. We were able to snap on our carseat and used the bassinet when the baby was little and then the sit up seat. The stroller was also in perfect condition with baby two. We added a ride on and still use it.
Bugaboo has a double stroller now too. I don't know how wide it is, you should look into it though.
Love the giveaway!
bethanypitman@gmail.com

Nikki | 7:06 AM

Well. I'm pregnant with my first... and feel completely unprepared! I have no idea what will be my must-haves. At the moment, I can't live without MILK! oh yummm!

Jenny O | 7:11 AM

Babywearing gear of any kind. We had a ring sling until my daughter was a year and a half, then bought an Ergo (love it!). I was constantly telling people that the sling was the best baby purchase we ever made. We didn't buy a lot of stuff (tiny one bedroom apartment, tiny budget - wish I'd known about that nest back then!) but both the sling and Ergo are the best best things. Also, now that I think of it, one of the few baby things I can think of that you can't substitute something else that doesn't have an exorbitant price tag because IF YOU LOVE YOUR BABY YOU WILL BUY THE EXPENSIVE ONE. Like, change your baby on the bed instead of buying a changing table, use a big tote bag instead of a $200 bells-and-whistles diaper bag, etc. (Nothing against people who buy stuff if they want to and can, just a little issue with the way baby gear is marketed towards future/new parents). Wow, that rambled. Sorry. BABYWEARING!

Nissa | 7:54 AM

Expecting my first, so I don't have any essential gear yet...which made this list incredibly helpful!!

CallieAnnie | 8:30 AM

Our Graco Pak n' Play was the overall best purchase we made. Sam used it when he was first home from the hospital as a bassinet and the removable attachment was a terrific and very stable diaper change station,then it became his play pen. Even at four, he still uses the play pen as a ball pit where he can jump. It can also work like a huge toy chest without the added complication of a lid. I plan to use the bassinet part and start again for our baby due in January.

Bianca | 8:43 AM

BUMBO SITTER! My girl isn't chubby like most babies so sitting on her own has taken longer. The sitter supports her so she doesn't fall sideways. There is a tray so I can feed her right there and it's easy to throw in the car and take to Grandma's!

Rhiannon | 10:58 AM

My ring sling was my most used baby item, at 3 1/2 and over the weight limit my son still likes to ride sometimes.
Cloth diapers both for his butt and for spit rags. Lots of terry cloth bibs. He was covered in spit up for his first 9 months and changing the bibs is much faster/easier than changing outfits all the time.
rnraupe(at)yahoo(dot)com

Lemonpuss | 11:00 AM

I wanted to chime in with two of my biggest must haves:

the Nose Frida. It allows you to clear the congestion from your baby's nose so s/he can nurse, sleep, etc. all without ever having to touch it. A lifesaver if your baby is sick. We used them into the 3rd year with my kids, until they were able to blow on their own. There is nothing as pitiful as a tiny baby unable to properly eat due to congestion.

Also, Lily Padz silicone nipple shields are the best for staying leak-free if breastfeeding. Around the house cotton washable ones are great, but when you are out in public avoiding milk spots on your shirt is a huge benefit to confident social interactions.

Best of luck!

Pixie508 | 11:21 AM

I don't know what my go to piece of baby gear is yet, because I'm still expecting our first baby! However, all of my mommy friends swear by their boppy pillows, so it's certainly on the top of my list!

Ashley | 11:24 AM

My "must have" baby item is my Sleepywrap (much like a Moby). With a 4 year old and a 2 year old as well as our 3 month old, this mama needs her hands free as much as possible! Plus, our youngest daughter is super comfortable in it and loves to be close to mama.

I've seen mamas of twins use them in the early days/weeks, too! =)

Jamie | 11:30 AM

Little cotton hats! My son slept much better when wearing one of those little beanie hats and being swaddled too of course.

Clare C. | 11:37 AM

Any sort of back carrier is perfect for little ones. They get to be close, and you still get to have the freedom to get work done!

Jenski | 11:54 AM

Aden and Anais swaddle blankets, and the Fisher Price Rock and Play sleeper, definitely not something I thought I would use but it is the only place my son will sleep other than on top of me.

Mrs. Bialobrzeski's First Grade Classroom | 12:48 PM

I love Bum Genius Elemental One Size All In Ones - the ones that are organic with snaps instead of velcro. Cloth diapering is not so bad once you get the hang of things, though with twins...I don't know. =)

maggie.sosinska@gmail.com

Toraason | 12:55 PM

I love my 2011 Double BOb! I use it everyday!

nmg915 | 1:25 PM

I love my babyhawk, it let me be mobile, nurse and move at a normal pace without tons of gadgetry!

kellina | 1:50 PM

i couldn't ahve survived without my moby wrap. sophie hated all slings, carseats, bouncy seats, strollers but loved this. it kept her happy and gave me hands!

Suzie | 2:00 PM

Waterproof mattress pads, both for the baby's bed and yours! And 3-4 fitted sheets for the crib. We layered ours for those 2 AM barfs/poops that go everywhere, so we could just peel off the top sheet and put the baby back in the crib. The bouncer looks awesome - I'm due in February. :)

Meghan | 2:17 PM

I LOOOOVE my Ergo!

After trying multiple carriers with my son, a friend recommended the Ergo and we were hooked!

I now use it with my daughter and she is 14 months!

Alyssa | 2:20 PM

I loved the swaddle-me blankets and the halo sleep sacks. Our daughter still wears her sleep sack to bed.

christine | 3:16 PM

My sleepy wrap and then ergo were my #1 must have item. Looking forward to using them again with #2 soon!

Brooke | 3:34 PM

The Ergo is a MUST. My husband and I both used it with our son on a daily basis -- allowing us to be pretty mobile and use both of our hands while also staying close to our sweet boy.

MGS4783 | 3:34 PM

I'm newly pregnant with my first, so I have no favorites yet, but LOVED everything you posted. Great advice!!

lee | 3:35 PM

my must-have was to keep a change of clothes for the baby, as well a change of clothes for MYSELF! after wearing my baby's lunch down my back couple of time, i learned that keeping an extra shirt and pair of black pants in the bottom of the diaper bag was worth its weight in gold!

Camille | 5:06 PM

I'll submit TWO must-haves: a sound machine and a video baby monitor. Once we moved Henry to his own room at 7 months, I couldn't sleep unless he was (already) asleep and I could see his little face. Those two items helped me do just that. Ah, sleep.

Walkingborder (Karen) | 5:50 PM

Mine is so simple, so stupid, and all of 6$... but when I found out I couldn't find my old one from when my soon to be middle child was a baby, I PANICKED.

I will not raise a baby without a "Sassy 4-Section Powdered Formula Dispenser" Forget lugging around pre-made bottles that go sour/spoil or a canister of formula. Measure it out, and then dump into water on the go as needed. Freakin' hells to the yes!

Jessica | 6:03 PM

The sling was a life saver for me in the begininng. Later the baby einstein jumper was great for when they are alittle older. My daughter loved it which was a surprise since she hated her swing. I also loved have the safety mirror for the car so I could see her.

Eve | 6:58 PM

We could not have survived the first three months without swaddle blankets (the ones with the velcro tabs) and Nuk pacis. Our boy had colic/reflus/cried a LOT, but the swaddling plus paci combo did wonders.

Sarah | 6:59 PM

The Harmony pump is AMAZING!!! Bought the electric $300 pump for my first son and HATEEEEEEEED it too!!! for my 2nd a lacation consultant gave me the harmony for free and i never looked back!! Took it everywhere with me!! love it! people, dont waste your $$ on the electric ones!!

Maggie | 7:20 PM

Muslin swaddling blankets - I'll be giving them as baby gifts to first time moms forever!!

ChefSara | 7:32 PM

For baby #1, must haves were my medela pump in style (i worked initially), cosi bouncer (how i showered), and my ergo (the only way he'd sleep in the morning was in the ergo while i was walking the dog). For #2, must-haves were velcro swaddle blanket (the only kind he couldn't bust out of), the swing (with refulx, it's the only way he'd sleep) and my moby wrap.

FWIW, I HATED the infant insert for the ergo. You can go without it and just put the infant in sling-style, with both legs coming out one side. Much more comfortable!

Lindsay Collins | 7:41 PM

My must-have was my boppy... I agree, nursing or not, it's a must-have.

Wendy | 7:57 PM

My awesome Ju-Ju-Be diaper bag is my favorite!

Brooke | 8:36 PM

The video monitor. I didn't have one with my first son because I thought they were over the top but I got one for my daughter and LOVE it. Having my third a week after you and could definitely use a new bouncer.

Anonymous | 8:39 PM

I have a four month old and my favorite buys have been the snap n go, my soft carrier Baby K'tan (loooove it) and the $4.99 pack of Links. You hang hang nearly any toy from nearly any ot and they are fun just on their own.

Carin | 9:12 PM

I love my Baby K'tan carrier. It's like the moby, but no wrapping. Just throw it on!

Anonymous | 9:26 PM

The snap and go was a must have for my second daughter. She will only sleep in her carseat and will wake if she gets pick up. The snap and go was a sanity saver many time.

iceymocha(at)hotmail(dot)com

Milk Mama | 9:34 PM
This comment has been removed by the author.
Milk Mama | 10:00 PM

Must haves, must haves... Boppy, nursing cover, pump, nursing bras, baby carrier... Lots on my list and just three months to go! Thanks for the chance to cross some of this off. :)

sarah DOT pemberton AT northwestu DOT edu

(previous comment deleted because of miswriting the email address...)

@bananaramafoFin | 10:31 PM

A sling or carrier is my must-have item.
Thanks for all the mini reviews on all the great products!

Anonymous | 12:41 AM

Must have items for our twins were: Kiddopotamus swaddles, then on to the Miracle Blanket, and then when a bit older Aiden & Anais sleep sacks; Boppies and Luna Lullaby nursing pillows; GroBag Egg thermometer for room temperature monitoring; Weego twin baby carrier; Sophie the Giraffe for teething; Dish Doctor drying rack; and a sound machine.

(libbyrowen at hotmail dot com)

Mama Seoul | 4:26 AM

Love the Moby Wrap for the first few months and then Ergo or Beco Baby carriers afterwards. Mountain Buggy Swift stroller has the easy handling of a 3 wheeled stroller but is smaller and more compact. JJ Cole Diapers and wipes pods.

Sue | 6:09 AM

The one thing I couldn't live without with either of my babies were the hand-sewn swaddling blankets my mother made. I had ample children, and regular receiving/swaddling blankets could not contain them. My mother loving hand-fashioned and stitched, oh, about 20 for each of my babies. AND THEY WERE AWESOME! My three year old still loves to snuggle up with his favorite and a good book. I could smile all day long thinking about those swaddling blankets...

memphispets@yahoo.com

Romina | 6:24 AM

My mom life was transformed when I finally bought a diaper bag around the time my son was 4 months old. This http://www.skiphop.com/product/22000.html bag is awesome. Lots of pockets, zipper areas etc. They have a bigger model that might be better for lugging around stuff x2. I've also recently seen these http://www.soyoungmother.com/products/charlie-bags/ which look AWESOME and have little built-in coolers. Good luck with all the gear-shopping!

Cindy | 6:32 AM

Miracle blanket was the it item with our first. I think we still have it, but I know it has seen better days.

peaandbean | 7:54 AM

I found the "Eat, Sleep, Poop" journals essential for keeping track of my twin girls' feedings.

Taryn | 9:48 AM

Must Haves:
Snap N Go Stroller. So much easier to move the carseat from the base to the stroller.

A Boga Babe playmat. Baby love, love, loves hers. She plays on it all the time, we take it to music class, she cuddles up to it, talks to the owls on it. And it's washable!!

And help. Either your mom, or mother in law, or a friend, or a nanny, or a mother's helper. Someone to come and watch over even just for 30 minutes so you can shower, or read, or just sit in silence.

Kristen | 9:51 AM

No idea what my essentials will be--15 weeks pregnant with my first!

Aurora | 10:09 AM

The Fisher Price rock n play sleeper! We just had baby #4 and she refuses to sleep anywhere else - it's awesome. Also the mamaroo bouncer/swing whatever is awesome - no batteries!

Lara | 11:02 AM

Hmmm. I'm newly preggers, so I'm not sure I have any must-have baby items in mind yet, but there is this awesome turtle that Babies-r-us sells that projects stars on your ceiling as a night light :) First thing I'm putting on my registry when I get one.

Chantel | 11:10 AM

For us, our "must have" baby gear was a portable swing. Both of my kids loved to be rocked and sometimes Mama just needs her hands free to do things like wash dishes and take a solo shower! The regular swings were just too big and bulky, so we spent the same amount of money on a portable swing and lived happily ever after. The vibrating bouncy seat ranked a very close second, even if just because my eldest had digestive issues and my youngest had reflux. Total lifesavers!

Alyssa | 11:15 AM

Baby swing! My son slept in it for the first 7 months because he HATED his crib, and I loved sleep. LOL alyssa (dot) visscher (at) gmail (dot) com

Anonymous | 12:16 PM

If you fo plan to breastfeed you need a twin bf pillow- singles won't work! Even though its gigantic I highly recommend the twin "my brest friend" pillow (even if I hate that silly name!)

Anonymous | 12:20 PM

Manual breast pump, fo' sho'!

unicorn2themax | 1:21 PM

most used items were any absorbent cloth, the oft cited crappy cloth diaper that aren't really for diapers being the best! babies sure leak a lot.
fave items were various conveyances to strap the wee one to my bod. moby, mei tai, boba, ring sling. snuggly.

Kristin | 1:35 PM

Muslin swaddling blankets and a Sleepy Wrap were our must haves! (That and my boobs, which fortunately were always around and free!)

~april | 1:43 PM

wow! i love all these products! great list. the little grass dryer is pretty darn cool as well as the fox backpack! my go-to item...the co-sleeper! nothing like having to just roll over and pick the baby up to nurse in the middle of the night! aprilwz at gmail dot com

mary fran | 1:47 PM

i don't know what baby gear will be essential for me yet because this is my first pregnancy. but i'm thinking i'll be needing/wanting a sling.

bbmowery | 2:44 PM

I'd have to say that the Boppy pillow has been terrific because it give your arms a rest. It has a lot of different uses, and we haven't gone a single day since our baby was born without using it. Love love love my Boppy.

bbmowery [at] hotmail [dot] com

KG | 2:51 PM

Uh, yeah, pregnant with twins - my first (two) so I have NO IDEA what will be essential baby gear, except that we live right on some great hiking trails, so some way to get out into the woods with these two will be key. A carrier plus an off-road single stroller? A double off-road stroller (how maneuverable can one of those suckers really be)? Who knows? But your list is going to be SUPER helpful!

Becka Robinson | 2:57 PM

I'm not sure yet since I'm about to be a first time mom but... I really love the sakura bloom slings and they're on my list of must haves. :)

Rach | 3:48 PM

Must have? A rocking chair for the middle of the night!

Sara | 3:53 PM

My absolute must have baby item was a big yoga ball, or balance ball, or whatever you call those huge exercise balls. It was enormously soothing to my daughter. Swaddle and bounce: that was our first three months. Then as she got older and started taking actual naps, I used it to sooth her to sleep. The slight bounce mimics the womb, I guess--seriously it's like magic. You can also bounce a baby in a carseat, holding onto the handle (duh). Also see: Labor! And see: Ab rehab!

Also, my favorite swaddling blankets are from a brand called ABC. They're waffled so they can get tight and stay tight. They stretch out but shrink again when you wash/dry them.

robin | 4:03 PM

Before my final baby, I would have said the followings are must-haves:
1) swing (my first 2 LIVED in their swings, while sleeping, for their first 10 months!)
2) Moby (for 1st couple months), then Ergo
3) Co-sleeper/pack n play combo
4) Entertainment center of some kind
5) Swaddling blankets for the early days

Now, since having babe #3, my list has changed
1)bouncer, instead of swing
2) Kangaroo corner sling, then ergo
3-5)same as above
6) Bob stroller. Not the most compact, true, but also not the bulkiest. The twin one may be a bit on the gigantic side, though.

I think there may be a couple of baby wearing devices out there that allow you to wear twins at the same time. If you wanted to (which you may not, after carrying them around on the inside for so long! One at a time may be better ;)0

Alsgal aka Kristy | 5:07 PM

Our exersaucer. Corbin spends half the day in his...he is happiest in there :)

Lindsay Yuasa | 5:30 PM

Pregnant with my first right now (18 weeks), so not sure what my must have gear will be yet. This post was super helpful though, thank you!

Sarah | 5:37 PM

this is our first but I've seen these bottle slings that attach to car seats & they look like huge lifesavers for people with multiples.

right night my savior is cocoa butter in stick form for my nips to prep for bf'ing. Recommended by my grandma who nursed 6 babes, including twins!

Becky | 6:39 PM

Definitely my Moby wrap! My daughter loooved the cozy snuggly feeling.
rma910 at gmail dot com

sahrabara | 6:52 PM

Not due till February, so I'm not sure exactly what my must-have's are - that's why lists like yours are so helpful. I definitely want a wrap (mei tei?) and I've heard many wonderful things about Aiden & Anais blankets.

Belle K Miller | 7:00 PM

I purchased an expensive-ish sling when I had my daughter (Heart to Heart, but there are loads of brands out there). It's a ring sling, totally light, comfortable (hello shoulder padding) and easy to adjust. We have travelled to Bali and Chile with her and I used the sling almost daily.
PS I am expecting Number two in September so I am totally enjoying following your growing belly and empathizing (sp) with your joys and pains.

Stephanie Rose | 7:13 PM

The Miracle Blanket, the swing, and the video monitor were all three our MUST haves to survive baby-hood

Emily | 7:13 PM

LOVED the boppy - and cheap cloth diapers as burp clothes!

Jennifer | 7:15 PM

Essential gear after my twins were born--double nursing pillow, arms reach cosleeper, and my Beco Baby Carrier...

Oh and living around the block from my mother--absolutely ESSENTIAL;)

Ida Mae | 7:26 PM

my baby carriers.
I used both the Baby Hawk and the Ergo. Love them both!

ida_mai at hotmail dot com

Lena | 7:36 PM

An extra big swaddling blanket.

Amanda | 7:56 PM

I love my Ergo. I even carry my twins together in one. They're 6 lbs and 6lbs 12oz right now and we're getting close to them not fitting, but as long as they both fit they will get crammed in there together. My tip though is to keep the hood up so you get stopped fewer times with the list of questions (are they twins? how old? are they identical? how big were they when they were born? etc.)

M | 8:13 PM

There's no way I could have gone without a sling for my boy! I bought so many different styles in cute prints- I couldn't resist!

SKhan | 8:32 PM

Thank you for posting the must haves. I don't know what my "must haves" are since we are 24 weeks pregnant with twins. From my time as a nanny, my must have would be a bouncy seat.

Kathryn | 8:46 PM

Our faves were a bouncy chair, and a swaddle blanket, occasionally even at the same time. Whatever works, right?

janenoir | 9:46 PM

I love my Bumgenius cloth diapers! Incredibly economical and environmentally friendly!

C.G | 11:56 PM

The most essential baby gear item I used would most definitely be my Hotsling. It was awesome as a newborn, great as an infant, and good as a younger toddler.

beersincannes | 12:07 AM

Swaddling blankets are KEY! I had the muslin ones as well as one little "mousie" blanket that I scored from Old Navy. It went everywhere and was a swaddler until my boy was 9 months old! And, a small (good quality) umbrella stroller is key!

Emily | 2:13 AM

If you are planning to use a pacifier, get WubbaNubs! WubbaNubs are pacifiers with little stuffed animals hooked on them. It sounds weird but they are super cute and practical!

fo | 3:23 AM

I'm going to be a first time mom and am 20 weeks so still trying to figure out what's necessary. This list is SUPER helpful!!

Fo | 3:26 AM

I'm going to be a first time mom in Dec and I have NO idea what i'll need!! This list is super helpful and i'm going to need to refer back to it when i'm lost in Buy Buy Baby!

redheadkjn | 4:36 AM

As a working mom, I'm a big fan of the double-electric breast pump, and also of our bottle warmer. SOOO much safer than using the microwave, and super quick too.

The other thing I couldn't live without (although this is for older babes) was our exersaucer. Whenever our daughter was in a bad mood, we plopped her in there and she was happy for HOURS. Total lifesaver.

#2 is due in November, so loving your list for looking at what I might want to pick up this time!

Althea | 5:05 AM

Husband and I are trying for # 2 right now and boy have things come a long way in three short years.
I love my Bjorn and my Boppy. Essential. Thanks for hosting this amazing giveaway!

Carrie B. | 5:33 AM

My must have was a swing that plugged into then wall, instead of using batteries. My son fell asleep in that thing every night for the first 4 months, plus napped there during the day. I don't know how many batteries we would have gone through if it wasn't electric!

cdisab | 5:39 AM

2 words: Miracle Blanket! We swaddled ours for the first 6 months and could not have lived without one!

Martha | 6:40 AM

My must-have is probably a big pack of newborn white onesies :) I also really loved my Kolcraft universal stroller, like the snap and go you posted about. I used it for the first six months or so. My Archer slept in the carseat like a champ so it was so helpful!

tolmema | 6:42 AM

We used a Graco Snap and Go (I think that's what it was called), where you just hook the carseat into the stroller. It was so convenient because I only needed to have one travel system.

I also use a Jellybean baby wrap with my LO pretty much every day! That's been a lifesaver many times when I have a tired little girl; she can just fall asleep in the sling and I can continue with whatever I was doing. :)

SuperT | 7:10 AM

I think THE most essential is the bouncer. It is the only way I got a shower or a few minutes of hands-free time when my son was tiny. Also, swaddle blankets seem to be pretty essential for my babies.

the flashbulb | 7:15 AM

You've already listed a lot of the top gear we've been using (Max is 5 months today) - but the yoga exercise ball we bought for his birth has come in much more handy for bouncing him to sleep. Best. Purchase. Ever.

Lindsay | 7:33 AM

I loved the Aidan & Anais swaddling blankets as well as MAM glow in the dark pacifiers... in the middle of the night I didn't have to feel around for it, there is was glowing! Our son is so active and loves jumping so the our Jolly Jumper is amazing, so much better than a Johnny Jump Up. It is Canadian so I don't know where you can buy it in the States but I found the Jump Up pointless.

Liz | 7:44 AM

I'm in the same boat as some of your other readers... NO IDEA WHAT I'M DOING. Expecting my first in February and my sister in law came over the other day and just laughed at my registry-in-progress. I'll buy what you tell me to buy. How about that?

Stephanie | 7:47 AM

Definitely my beloved Ergo. I love it because it is sooo easy to nurse in them (if nursing is your situation, that is...). My most triumphant nursing-in-Ergo moment with my (now 3 y.o.) daughter? On a suspension bridge, in Mexico, at night. Awwww, yeah. I now have a cutie 6 week old son who just seems like he would like a good bounce. Wishing you the very best with the rest of your pregnancia. So cool! Love you blog, am a long-time reader. xo

Anna | 7:50 AM

My fav. is definitely the baby bjorn bouncer that my parents have at their house for the babe. Would love one for my house that is 14 hours away from the parents and miracle bjorn.

Leslie M | 8:05 AM

Definitely a sling or other baby-wearing device! My 5-week-old won't tolerate his bouncer or his swing. Sigh. Mommy's tired. :)

whitney | 8:10 AM

I'll be a new mom in February! This is my first and I'm so excited. I have no ideas what my must haves may be, but I love the information you've provided.

Lori | 8:18 AM

I got the baby gym you listed and the grass dryer. My son is only 12 days old but they both rock. He loves that gym and the animals makes sounds. My other must have so far is the Mamroo. It is a hybrid chair swing with white noise and an iPod hookup. He LOVES it! We put a summer infant snuffler to boost him while he is still small. I love the bouncer you listed looks fantastically portable and much more comfortable than the car seat I have been using.

-Lori

Lori dot cavanaugh at gmail dot com

ell_soprano | 8:23 AM

My must-have item with my son was his swing for sure. It was the only place I could put him, besides my arms, where he would not cry incessantly.

This giveaway is so perfect, with baby #2 on the way in January a bouncer is one of the few items on my must-purchase list!

Grace Miller | 8:37 AM

I just got this pillow for a futon in my son's playroom & noticed that is matches your bumper PERFECTLY! Wow! http://www.etsy.com/listing/77459259/contemporary-patchwork-pillow-cover

Also, I recently bought the SkipHop puppy lunchbox for my son too.

We must have the same taste :-)

I LOVE LOVE LOVE what you're doing with the twins nursery! Keep the room status updates coming!

Grace Miller | 8:43 AM

Also, the Ergo organic baby carrier is our favorite! I still use it with our 17 month old son.

Katherine Vargas | 9:11 AM

I have noooo idea what we're going to need yet - I do have a bit of a list put together of things that we're going to investigate due to helpful posts like this one that come up on the blogs that I read, but I don't personally have any real-life experience with anything just yet as I'm only at 10 weeks {eek}

so far, though, I'll say that we're going to cloth diaper, so bumGeniuses & wet bags to go with them, & slings of some kind? still not sure which yet as there are SO MANY.

thanks so much for the opportunity! A bouncer like this is not something that I'd yet looked in to & I've heard such great things about Bjorn

Brita Mess | 9:13 AM

Not sure yet since I'm due with my first in two weeks. But, I already know that my must-have is my supportive husband who takes such great care of me. I know he'll do the same for our baby!

Michelle | 9:24 AM

I'm pregnant with my first, so my "must have" is only based on what I've heard... but I'm really hoping that our baby is happy in a sling!

Nicky Sahady | 9:27 AM

I am totally overwhelmed with all the gear that's out there. That bouncer certainly looks awesome! We're expecting our first little one in January!

b*schus | 9:29 AM

Well, I'm only 13 weeks along with my first, so no major experience with gear yet! I had purchased toddler backpacks for my 2-year old nephew and its a huge hit with him!

rachel | 9:45 AM

I love Tottini! It's just around the corner from my husband's snowboard shop. I don't buy a lot there... little pricey for my budget; but I love to look. I think the essential piece for families with twins is a good stroller. We had the snap and go for a good six/eight months; and then I got a baby jogger city micro. It fits in our smallish van no problem, is light and easily pushes with one hand. My three year old can ride in a seat (or on the handlebar if it's a short trip - no, not the safest; give me a break!) and I can put a baby in the becco.

KellyDove | 9:47 AM

Love my Boppy newborn lounger. Lets you actually set the baby down -- on your bed on the couch (as long as you watch her), on the floor. Recommended it to friends who love it too. Also, the Maclaren easy traveller (which is just a frame that a car seat sets on. Most convenient thing ever when the baby is you, and for traveling.

Sue | 9:52 AM

I ditto a sling!

Tasha | 10:02 AM

a really good electric breast pump...i worked full time with my first and it was a lifesaver (pumped every 2 hours for months and months!)

Anne | 10:14 AM

I hope this doesn't end up being essential for new baby (I'm 27 weeks today) but with my older son we could not have lived through his colic without a yoga ball. I wore him or held him practically all the time until about 6-7 months, but he wouldn't tolerate me sitting down still. I would bounce him to sleep in a sling for naps and just keep him in there, rarely could I get him off my body. Holy bejeezus I don't want to live through that again, but I have two balls and my small electric pump at the ready just in case. I imagine we'll use bouncing sometimes with this next one but I hope not to have to rely on it like I did the first time.

Of course, the ball will also be useful in labor - they do have the alternate name of birthing balls for a reason :-)

MandyU | 10:14 AM

My son love love loved his Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes. I was super surprised, but this little thing was his favorite toy from a very early age. It is great for the car and has now become one of my standard baby shower gifts.

Holland | 10:21 AM

I'm pregnant with my first but if I could see into the future, it would be the ergo carrier or the aden and anis blankets. You are way ahead of me and our due dates are only a couple of days apart! Must go prepare, aayyyy!

Holland | 10:22 AM

I'm pregnant with my first, just a few days behind you actually!, but I foresee loving the aden & anis blankets. I also registered for the grass drying rack, that thing looks awesome!

Virginia-Ann | 10:35 AM

Each child is so different and so is the must haves for each. Our first it was the infant swing. Our second child demanded a harness that she could not escape from while in a stroller. Our third came shortly after the second, so a double stroller became the must have and remained there for a very long time.
For grandchildren, the must have for our first was and still is a great travel crib! I am entering this contest because the grandma in me thinks that it will not be long before the wails of another infant will be heard in our home!

MadEnoughWorld | 10:44 AM

Baby Bjorn. And earplugs. And coffee. For me, not the baby.

Gaby | 12:21 PM

Aden & Anais swaddling blankets are the bees knees! I got mine at Target for my son (a June baby), and they were the perfect size for swaddling, had great stretch, and also were good for nursing covers in a pinch or a shield from the sun when thrown over a carseat. We used to use a receiving blanket against baby, then use the A&A stretchy blanket over it to really get a good swaddle. Worked great, there's some cute designs, and they're pretty inexpensive. I actually just dug one out to use as a lightweight blanket for said son (who is now 13-months-old, OMG), and I'm still happy with them.

Kate | 12:47 PM

Ooh! Pick me please!
Baby's due August 8th.

My must have: the Miracle Blanket.

Hands down.

Anonymous | 12:53 PM

Love my Moby. Collic be gone with the Moby. k_berger4@hotmail.com

Katie | 1:16 PM

I can't live without her miracle blanket! Life saver!

Tara V | 1:17 PM

Absolutely 100% my Ergo. Couldn't live in a city without it!

Amy T. | 1:47 PM

I haven't gone a day without my Brest Friend Twins plus nursing pillow.
My b/g twins are 7.5 months. You'll be fine!
amylynthompson at gmail dot com

jess | 2:06 PM

my must have baby item...i loved LOVED my pickle bottom diaper bag, it was the best carry all of all time!

cd | 2:31 PM

Boppys are great for everything but nursing. Get a "My Breast Friend" pillow and thank me later. Seriously, game changer.

SeattleCJ | 2:56 PM

I think the Puj Tub, even though baby will outgrow it pretty quickly. It makes bath time so much easier when you're healing (C-section or not) because you don't have to bend over a bathtub. You can comfortably and safely bathe baby in the sink.

SeattleCJ | 2:58 PM

The Puj tub. Even if baby outgrows is in just a couple months it makes bath time so much easier when your body is healing. No need to bend over a bath tub.

grammargeek | 3:04 PM

I'm nineteen weeks pregnant with my first, so I don't know what my "must have" will be yet. But I am excited about all of the advice given in the comments!

Cara | 3:47 PM

I'm 14 weeks, so I'd have to say my must have list so far consists of a crib. I'm waffling between the Baby Mod or the Babyletto (who comes up with these names?!)

lastdogz | 5:49 PM

Love the list! My favorite baby gear item when my son was an infant was the swaddle wrap. There are different ones on the market, but basically he wouldn't sleep soundly unless he looked like a baby burrito with completely restricted arm movement. Thanks for the chance to win!

Leahelenoelle | 6:27 PM

My must have is a Beco carrier! I prefer the fit and fabric options to Ergo, though Ergos are great too.

For the Love of Naps - Sarah | 6:28 PM

my hooter hider...or the more sophisticated name...the bebe au lait you mentioned.

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