Products and Suggestions for the Soon-to-be and New Mom

By: Mama Mary

If you are expecting or have just welcomed a little bundle of joy into the world, take a time out and wish yourself a Happy Mother's Day. As a mom, you are constantly in demand. Rest assured, in just a few weeks time, you will become a master of time management and multi-tasking. Just remember to take 5 minutes and breathe. Your well-being is just as important as taking care of your little one. With all that being said, let's take a look at 3 products that make life a whole easier with baby in tow.

A Good Baby Monitor

From that fateful night your baby sleeps alone for the first time in the crib to having a full-blown panic attack when you see your baby rollover during the night, a dependable baby monitor keeps you in touch with your child. With so many monitors on the market it can be overwhelming finding one that fits your needs. Here are a few recommendations:

  • Owlet Smart Sock 2 Baby Monitor (around $300): If you love smart gadgets, this monitor is for you. For around $300 you can rest easy as you track your baby’s vitals. Slip a pair of socks onto your baby's feet and enjoy the hi-tech features. The socks track your infant's heart rate and oxygen levels and reports this information back to the base station letting you know when something is wrong. Lights and sounds alert you to what’s happening with baby.

    Pros

    • Keeps you informed of baby's vital signs.
    • Comes with 3 sock sizes so it grows with your baby.
    • Alerts are sent to your phone via the Owlet app.

    Cons:

    • iOS compatible only.
    • Expensive.
    • For that price, more features should be included.
  • Infant Optics DXR-8: Winning the Bump's "Best of Baby Awards" in 2018, this is a video monitor equipped with multiple lenses, night vision and zoom, pan, and tilt camera capabilities, alarm function and two-way talk. Priced just right around $170 it's an excellent choice between functional and budget friendly.

    Pros

    • Interchangeable lens allows you to view your baby the way you want to.
    • Features full color LCD display.
    • Super easy to setup, just plug it in and play!

    Cons:

    • No app integration.
    • Many users reported issues with the device claiming it was "out of range."
    • Some users reported issues with the battery life.
  • iBaby monitor M6S: Easy on the wallet at around $120, this monitor offers enough of what you need to feel like you've got a close eye on baby. Download the iBaby app and you can view and control the camera. It features 1080p video, motion and sound detection, and plays pre-programmed lullabies or even lets you add your own!

    Pros

    • iOS and Android Friendly.
    • The ability to add your own music is definitely unique.
    • Loads of additional features (temperature sensors, video clip recording, and two-way talk to name a few).

    Cons:

    • Users reported the alerts were subpar.
    • Cannot access the camera via the web.
    • Many users complained of Wi-Fi connection issues in order to get the device to work properly.

A Dependable Travel System

I suggest purchasing or asking for a car seat/stroller combo. Don't be shy to add one of these items to your baby registry or even ask friends and family to pitch in on this gift. Baby travel systems tend to be a little pricier because you are getting two necessities in one. Keep in mind, you don't have to spend thousands of dollars here. Listed below are three travel systems that offer a lot of bang for your buck!

  • Chicco Bravo Trio Travel System: This stroller/car seat powerhouse comes in at around $380. This travel system is noted for safety and offers a removable stroller seat, single hand collapse capability for fast pack-up and storage, and a convenient holding tray to place a beverage or cell phone while walking through the park.

    Pros

    • Easy to assemble.
    • Long Lasting. Children up to 30 lbs. can fit in the car seat and the stroller can hold a child up to 50 lbs.
    • Keyfit base can be easily installed from one car to another.

    Cons:

    • No snack tray for the kiddo.
    • Heavier than other systems.
    • Many users complained the fabric was too warm and of poor quality.
  • Graco Aire3 Click Connect Travel System: Prices vary on this travel system and can range from $160 - $300 so be sure to check for sales or coupons at participating retailers. Now this car seat/stroller combo has received a ton of user reviews giving it a general 4 out of 5-star rating. Users appreciated that it is lightweight, loaded with handy features like a zippered pouch and cup holders, and has a three-or-five-point harness that grows with your child.

    Pros

    • Easy to maneuver.
    • Lots of useful storage.
    • Can recline to a flat position. Perfect for a napping baby.

    Cons:

    • Many users complained of brake issues.
    • Several users had issues with the car seat latching properly into the stroller.
    • Reported canopy malfunctions.
  • Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 Travel System: The Baby Trend EZ Ride 5 Travel System is fantastically affordable (around $140) with a lot of cool perks. Rated as an "Amazon Choice" this travel system as a 5-point safety harness, 3-wheel design for flexible movement, and thickly padded seats and comfortable head rest.

    Pros

    • Equipped with nifty swing-away cup and snack tray.
    • Roomy storage compartment.
    • Great price.

    Cons:

    • Many users complained this product was not as well made when compared to other travel systems.
    • Poor wheel system.
    • Several users found it difficult to adjust the straps.

Onesies…Like a Whole Lot of Onesies

So let's not beat around the bush here, babies are MESSY. They spit up their food, they blow out their diapers, and they love to grab and pull at everything when they're old enough to. They are little masses of destruction, but golly are they cute! Whether you call it a onesie or a bodysuit, stocking up on these are a life saver. Quick tip: Zippers over snaps (IMO). And make sure you grab a variety of sizes as your baby grows at what seems like warp speed. Some great places to pick up affordable, adorable baby clothes are at Old Navy, Carter's, and Children's Place.

Just admit it, a part of you is slightly jealous that your kid is enjoying life in some super comfy, socks included loungewear. Lucky for you, adult onesies are totally available now too! Snuggle up next to junior wearing a onesie that fits your personality. Check out Kohl's, JCPenney and Amazon to see current inventory.

Now that we've established some helpful and practical items to help mom out, let's take a moment to check out items to treat mom to. While every woman is different in terms of style and taste, here are three suggestions to show your appreciation to the special mom in your world.

Mom Inspired Necklaces

Whether she loves to sparkle or prefers to keep it understated, you can find a wonderful necklace that will always remind her of her little one. For the gemstone loving Mom, visit Zales for a dazzling selection of necklaces. To find something one-of-a-kind, Etsy has a beautiful assortment of styles from vendors all over the world. While it might not be Mother's Day specific, check out Macy's for a wide variety of necklaces. Filter down the options and choose metals, stones, and styles that she will actually like.

Spa Packages

Every mom deserves a little pampering. Now depending on the service or package desired, the price can go from affordable to downright out-of-sight. May I suggest a happy medium? Visit SpaFinder Wellness 365 and pick up an egift card or enter in your zip code to find local spas and salons that offer a variety of services. From massages to facials, pedicures to acupuncture, treat mom to a few hours of relaxation; away from dirty dishes, away from screaming kids, away from mowing the lawn. Just a few hours. All. By. Herself.

Wine

Last but certainly not least, draw a nice bubble bath, dust off a large goblet from the liquor cabinet and treat mom to a bottle or two of her favorite vino. Perhaps a gift basket or wine subscription even?... ok, so this may be more of a hint for my husband. At Wine.com choose wines from a preferred region, highest rated, or even wine combos that are paired with tasty chocolate treats or food. Visit Wired for Wine and shop for wines by price point or check out their collection of vodkas, whiskeys and other spirits. For something different, have a bottle or accessory engraved with a special message.

With every year comes a different challenge and with every baby comes a new perspective. It's not easy at times but I can say honestly as a first-time mom, it is wholeheartedly rewarding. Mistakes will happen, and messes will be made but enjoying the journey together is what it is all about. To all the moms out there new and seasoned, thank you and Happy Mother's Day.

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