I knew the ‘essential items’ that were needed for having a baby – cot, car seat, stacks of nappies, muslins, baby wipes, etc. I’d read enough articles, spoken to enough new mummy friends and used my (baby brain fuelled) common sense to know the absolute ‘must haves’. Now Austin has been with us for 9 whole months, I have made my own list of items that we probably could have done without but without them, life would have bit that little bit harder. May I introduce my ‘Not Quite Essential’ Essentials…
Video baby monitor:
We wanted a video baby monitor, not only to be able to check on our Little Bear sleeping without risking waking him when creeping into his room, but also to watch his funny antics when he gets a bit bigger and starts trying to emulate Houdini!
Using a Y-Cam camera (we have the Knight SD) and the Baby Monitor HD iPhone app from Sunshine Apps, provides a fab video and audio link to Austin’s room. It’s great and has been AMAZING since we moved Austin in to his own room at 6 weeks old. Both hubby and I have the ability to watch Austin whenever he’s in his room.
I have the app open on my phone all through the night (I tend to wake up and check my phone with one sleepy eye, see Austin hasn’t escaped and go back to sleep) and have set the sound to mute, until he starts crying, then an alert sounds on my phone. You can even close the app down and still listen in to whatever baby is doing! Genius.
Ewan the Dream Sheep:
This sheep, from Sweet Dreamers is amazeballs! I bought him after my friend received one at her babyshower. None of her guests had heard of Ewan before so we passed him around listening to his soothing womb sound. He has four different sounds (one on each of his legs – of course!), an actual womb/heartbeat recording; vacuum cleaner, rainfall and a relaxing harp recording. He also emits a lovely pink glow which Sweet Dreamers say when combined with the sounds, help settle babies and toddlers to sleep.
I love Ewan so much that one of my good friends very recently had a baby (an incredibly gorgeous little fella!) and I gave them a Ewan too. Apparently it’s helping to settle him which is fab news.
Austin suffered with colic symptoms when he was really young, due to his forcep birth. Ewan and his womb/heartbeat sound was the only thing that would help soothe him. We would hang Ewan over the side of the moses basket (he has a handy velcro tail so you can secure him wherever you like) so the glow lit up the basket and the sound filled the room – helping mummy and daddy sleep too!
We still put Austin to bed with Ewan now at 9 months old, only now he cuddles him to sleep. In fact normally he falls asleep with Ewan in one hand and Eeyore in the other. Super cute!
Ohhhh Eeyore, how would we survive without you! My Mum gave Austin a small, soft – incredibly soft – Eeyore toy, when we first returned home from the hospital. We placed him in the moses basket with Austin and that’s when their love affair began! Since then, Austin and Eeyore have been inseparable. A month or so ago, we were out shopping and hubby saw a giant Eeyore and made the mistake of showing Austin, whose eyes lit up! We bought the giant Eeyore.
We now have four Eeyore’s in total (it’s impossible to walk past an Eeyore in a shop, see Austin’s little face light up and NOT purchase said Eeyore), in various sizes. I noticed one in Boots yesterday and thankfully managed to steer the stroller away from it! I fear Eeyore will take over our house.
Like most babies, Austin is always on the go and as soon as he was old enough to hold his head up, he wanted to be upright all the time. Step forward the Fisher Price Rainforest Jumperoo! The best invention, EVER.
Why, you ask? Well I’ll tell you:
- The seat spins 360 degrees (baby can move this around themselves once they realise they can do it) and the seat has three height settings
- It helps baby to improve their co-ordination while they try to grab at the dangly animals above their heads.
- There are different toys to spin, turn and grab (and dribble over and bite if the urge takes them – which it will).
- The music settings allow you to turn music up and down (or off!), to play only when baby jumps/hits the toys or to play constantly, just to ensure you really do have the tune wedged tightly in your head *fondly remembers humming whilst trying to get to sleep EVERY night*.
Austin loved it from the first time he used it. It gave him the opportunity to stretch and kick his legs before he was able to crawl. It was great as I could pop Austin in it while I enjoyed a hot cup of tea (that’s right people – HOT CUP OF TEA!) and a bourbon biscuit. He honestly would have stayed in it all day if I’d let him! The only time he got bored of it was when he was on the verge of crawling, but by then he was at the top of it’s weight limit (25lbs – he’s always been a heavy boy!).
So there we have my ‘Not Quite Essential’ Essentials! Perhaps Austin is the only little fella with an Eeyore infatuation but I REALLY recommend the baby monitor and app, Ewan the Dream Sheep and the Jumperoo! We couldn’t have done without them!x