I don't believe anything is a necessity when you have a child except to love them. So I though I'd share some of my favourite items that make all our lives easier. I love these products for their econess as well as how practical and versatile they are since most are now being used by Gabriel as well as John.
I love my Ergo. It's so easy to use, stylish and very versatile. I have it in the car at all times and use it about a million times a week. I bought mine when John was 6 months old and continued to use it with him on my back until I got pregnant; he was about 2 at this stage. I find using my Ergo is so much easier than trying to carry a heavy 6kg baby and it also keeps my hands free to catch or hold onto a slippery toddler. I love that the baby's weight sits on my hips and the thick shoulder straps rather than pulling on my back.
I love walking and just love my Mountain buggy. I love that it's a New Zealand company so built for our conditions. They are so sturdy and can handle pretty much anything I throw at it. Even better they are still fantastic second hand.
I love cloth nappies we've only ever used Itti bitti and so far they've stood up to a very active toddler and a wiggly little baba. I love the colours and that they are made from organic cotton and bamboo. They are super absorbent, fluffy and super easy to use. I must also mention I love bamboo velour baby wipes. They last for many many years and have so many uses and also wash and dry really well. Cloth wipes will save you a lot of money and rubbish.
Gina Ford's books were a huge help when John was little as we had no idea what we were doing. Gina's easy to follow routines really worked for John and allowed him to sleep through the night very early on. Her routines allows me to know what my boys need, when they need feeding and putting them to sleep before they have to cry for these things.
My favourite kid's toy has to be Sophie the giraffe. I love that she is made from natural rubber and is 50 years old. Both my boys have a Sophie and both of them love her. She was/ and currently is in both my boys bassinets. She was also the first toy/ object that both boys "talked" to. Sophie's not just a pretty face she is a teether and John's Sophie has been so chewed on she has hardly any paint left.
Using a good quality natural balm on my baba's bum really helps reduce rashes and pain. I love my botty balm which I've been making and using for ages now. It's easy to make your own and so much cheaper. When my boys do get nappy rash I use my benzoin ointment.
I was anti-pacifiers before I had children, however they really can be a lifesaver. I really like the Hevea pacifiers. They are made of natural rubber and I like the nose and chin cut outs. Not all children like or need pacifiers but I find they have really helped both my boys get to sleep easily.
Baby's need to sleep somewhere so we bought a second hand touchwood cot. I chose this cot because it's a four in one; bassinet, cot, toddler bed and a children's sofa. Another great New Zealand company; super versatile and long living. Gabriel will be the third child who uses this bed and it will have many years of life left in it. We got a latex mattress made for the bed which is super comfortable and hypo-allergenic.
Second hand clothes or second hand pretty much everything will not only save you heaps of money but is also much better for the environment. Children grow out of clothes so quickly that there really is no need to buy brand new. Clothes are easily passed down from one child to the next and beyond.
What are your favourite baby helpers?