As a parent there are certain things that you know going in you will need. You know, the standard crib, stroller, highchair, etc.
Some things are less obvious and I'm going to share with you the unexpected, yet completely genius products that I'm obsessed with as a parent!
This one is a live saver! There is nothing worse than the scent of vomit or urine in a car seat. Yes, you can wash the covers but they take days to air dry and let's face it, no one has time for that! Throw this universal car seat cover on and just rip it off if it gets dirty for a quick wash and dry. It'll also keep your car seat from getting the dreaded cheerio or snack build up down in the bottom. The final selling point for me was the price. To get a replacement/back up cover for my Britax car seat is $90 dollars!!! This is cheap enough ($30) that I can buy a couple. Just trust me, you need it!
All is simple when you have an infant and can use one of those nifty little carrier covers to keep them warm on walks, but once you switch to a regular stroller, things get complicated when it comes to taking walks in the cold. If you think you'll get your 6 month old to keep her gloves and hat on, you're crazy. Not to mention that your sweet little babe's face is going to get cold! The solution? Easy! Just throw this convenient stroller cover on and you'll be able to walk in any weather. It holds in heat really well, so unless it's below freezing I don't even put my daughter in a coat. It comes in various sizes, so it'll work with whatever stroller you already have. It is super easy to take on and off. It also folds up small, so I can easily keep it in the bottom of my stroller in case you need it. If it suddenly starts to rain my kiddo will stay nice and dry! Also the clear viewing area is large and extends to both sides so your little one can still see all of the sites! For $15, this is a complete game changer!
Ok, so this is a lifesaver for parents with pets! This nifty door strap keeps your kids from going down the steps or into rooms that you don't want them in but allows the door to stay open just enough (adjustable of course) for a pet to fit through. We love this for our basement so our cat can go down to his litter box. It also comes with a door bumper to keep the door from shutting. It's truly genius! It also comes off easily with a little heat (hairdryer) and doesn't leave marks like other child gates. It's super easy to lock and unlock (much quicker than a child gate). You can grab 1 for $19 or a pack of 2 for $30. Not bad!
So I was really irritated upon becoming a mom by how expensive Dreft laundry detergent is. In order to get a container for 96 loads it costs $27! My initial thought was that I would just do my daughter's laundry in this detergent and the rest of our clothes in the detergent we were already using. Well that just isn't feasible given how tiny baby clothes are (it takes so long to have a full load). So I looked for a more economical option that I could use for all of our clothes -- that's when I found Puracy! I love their plant-based, non-animal tested products! You can get a container for 96 loads for $16 or a 2 pack for $26. There is a scent-free option or fresh linen. Most importantly, it does an excellent job! I rarely have to use stain-remover on any of our clothes when I just use this detergent. Give it a try!
So you'll find out soon enough, that there comes a time when your baby starts to stand/walk and can't really wear a traditional sleep sack anymore. The problem is that they also certainly won't be old enough to keep blanket on. So what do you do? Well, that's where these awesome wearable blankets come in! They come in adorable patterns, different fabrics (a soft minky for winter and a cotton for summer). I can't say enough about the quality of this blanket. I've been using it for at least 18 months and wash it often -- it still feels like it did the day it arrived! It's just $20 and once you see the cute patterns you'll probably end up with a draw full just like me!
Do you ever accidently slam a door and instantly regret it as you hear your sleeping baby wake up? Argghh! It's the worst! But lucky for us there are these awesome little silicone bumpers you can put in your door jams to prevent such a travesty! You can get a pack of 30 for $10. You're welcome!
So let's assume that you like to clean your kid's toys. Maybe just regular cleaning or maybe some snot-faced kid just came over and got their germs all over your precious baby's things. Well you probably want to disinfect them but if your baby is still young, they often put things in their mouth and probably shouldn't be licking Lysol or bleach. That's where this awesome disinfectant comes in! It has no harsh chemicals but still kills 99.9% of viruses and bacteria. No need to rinse afterwards like you do with bleach water. Oh! And it's pet friendly. I love this simple and safe solution! Just $14 for two 16oz bottles!
So speaking of germs... those disgusting germs on shopping carts and high chairs are just totally gross. As a new mom, I would just Lysol the shit out of a cart or high chair before putting my baby in it. That is a lot though. As they get bigger they can start to reach in place you don't think of: under the table, under the high chair; gross places that don't see the light of day. That's where this product saves the day! Its quick and easy. Just throw it over top of the cart or high chair and no gross germs will touch your little one. You can throw it in the wash at home and call it a day. There are several similar to this on the market but I like how much full coverage this has. Trust me, your child won't be touching anything icky. It's $24 and will last for years.
So we took our 8 month old daughter to Nashville in the heat of the summer and were super concerned about how to keep her cool in the 90-100 degree weather. Well this clip fan was a godsend! The rechargeable battery lasts for days, the positioning options are endless and the clip holds really tight! We've continued to use this fan well past that Nashville trip and it has held up wonderfully. We rely on it each summer to keep our kiddo cool and we couldn't be more pleased. You can snag this for $20!
Especially if you are a new mom, listen up! You absolutely need this bath tub! You can use it from infancy all the way through toddlerhood. It has two sides, one to lay your baby in a reclining position and the other for when they can sit up and want to splash around. My 30lb 2 year old still fits in this great. Now I'm sure you're wondering: "why wouldn't you just put your toddler directly in the bathtub?" Good question! This things saves so much water- it's awesome. Not only that, it's something much smaller to clean vs. an entire bathtub. I can't say enough good things about this tub. You can snag it for $35 (and it even comes in pink and blue!)
There you have it! My top 10 favorite items so far as a parent. Please share your favorites below with me in the comments!