Wednesday, October 29, 2008

3 pieces that go to a sippy cup, 3 more pieces that go to the bottle. Straws, valves, bottle nipples, and more. Doesn't it get old washing them by hand? At the same time, you've probably had pieces melt in the dishwasher or had the problem of them not getting washed well enough. You are nodding your head as you read this, right? The Munchkin Dishwasher Basket attempts to solve this problem for us.

Pros: This is basically a basket that you put in the top rack of your dishwasher. The basket opens up and is a great place for your sippy cup valves, nipples, straws, and any other little piece you may have. If you are washing bottle nipples, you actually pull them up through the top and they actually get washed well. Too many times I have washed bottle nipples on the top rack only to find them still dirty, turned on their side with dirty dishwasher water and other junk still in them.  This solves that problem which is so nice! The top has room for 14 bottle nipples and then also has room for other things such as sippy cup lids and valves. There is also a handy straw holder on the side if you have straws you need washed. (The straw holder can be removed)The plastic on this is very tough so it holds up well.

Cons: This does take up some space in the dishwasher, so if you live in an apartment like I do and have a small dishwasher, it's hard to really make room for it. It also makes it awkward when your dishwasher is small and you are trying to unload other cups and bowls from around it.  I've had a few problems getting it open up when it is wet. I like what the product is for but ended up getting rid of ours as it just took up too much space. One day when I have a big new dishwasher, I'd invest in another one of these.

The Bottom Line: Cool product, does it's job.

Price: $4-6

Where to Buy: Amazon, Target

Rating: Great

Monday, October 27, 2008

Johnson's Baby Cream

Johnson's Baby Cream is that classic baby smell in a thicker cream instead of just a lotion.

Pros: It's nice to have this lotion in a cream for dry skin. It does a great job moisturizing and has that great baby scent. It is a very mild formula and is allergy tested. I feel like it does a much better job than the original baby lotion. It comes in an 8 oz size and a soft squeeze tube.

Cons: This isn't the best cream for babies with exzema. I think there are better alternatives to help deal with this type of dry skin. I also think you have to apply often for it's moisturizing benefits.

The Bottom Line: A good lotion with that smells wonderful.

Price: $3.99

Where to Buy: Most major retailers (Walmart, Target)

Rating: OK

Saturday, October 25, 2008

The First Years Take and Toss not only has sippy cups that I have reviewed before, the have a whole line of products that inexpensive enough to "take and toss"


Pros:  I love the bowls and cutlery that you can get.  The bowls are the perfect size for cereal and come with lids so that you can throw snacks in the diaper bag.  They come in bright fun colors and wash up really well in the dishwasher.  They have baby as well as toddler cutlery.  We have had the toddler cutlery for 2 years and it has held up so incredibly well.  It is also the perfect transition size from baby spoons to full size cutlery.

Cons:  No Cons from this mama!

The Bottom Line:  This Take and Toss line is reasonably priced, holds up well, and is definitely recommended!

Price:  $12-15

Where to Buy:  Right now at Amazon, you can get the 28 piece set for $11.95 and free super saver shipping.

Rating:  Excellent

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Good Bites

Good Bites are another mom inspired invention.  How many little kids don't like a crust on their bread?  I could raise my hand on this one as I didn't like them when I was little.  I do now, but it took me time to warm up to the idea.  I remember tearing the edges off my bread many times when I was a child.  With Good Bites, you don't have to do that.  Available in 4 different designs, Good Bites will cut the crust for you.


Pros:  We have the mini version, which cuts the sandwich into 4 pieces, and into triangles.  The edges of this are sharp enough to cut bread, but not so sharp that they would cut a  child using it.  My 3 year old Chandler loves that his sandwich is in bite size pieces.  They are easy to pick up and easy for him to dip, which he loves to do.  What I also like about this is that it almost seals the edges when you cut the crust off, which helps keep the contents of the sandwich inside.  We've had this for well over a year.  It washes up nicely and is dishwasher safe on the top rack.  It also doesn't get dull and the plastic is still as strong as the day we bought it.  I love that it is available in different shapes too.  The heart shaped one is super cute.

Cons:  If you don't push down hard enough on the bread, you have to re cut it or pull it apart.  I really haven't had this problem though.  Other than that, no complaints here!

The Bottom Line:  Great Simple Product, worth buying.  Here is a Good Bites video that shows them in action.

Price:  $5-6 or $15 for a 4 pack that cut different shapes

Where to Buy:  One Step Ahead, Amazon

Rating:  Excellent

Monday, October 20, 2008

RazBerry Teether

The RazBerry Teether resembles a raspberry and although it doesn't taste like one, it really helps babies with teething.

Pros:
The RazBerry Teether is made of a food grade silicon which I think is a great idea. It has a bumpy texture that that resembles a raspberry which really helps massage your baby's gums. The first time I gave this teether to Rowan, it was an instant hit. He is working on two more bottom teeth and he immediately started chewing on it. He pulled it out of his mouth, looked at the bright colors and went right back chewing on it. I really think it gives him some relief. I like that this is designed somewhat like a pacifier. He can chew on it while he is crawling across the room. It fits in his mouth nicely and he also loves to look at the bright colors. And did I mention it looks super cute in his mouth? On the packaging, it says that it can be frozen for extra soothing comfort. This is a great idea and gives your baby the bumpy texture while also cooling their gums. A great idea is to get a pacifier clip and clip this to your baby for teething, even if they don't take a pacifier. That way you always have teething comfort right at hand!

Cons:
This looked a little big at first like it might be a bit bulky, but it works great for my 9 month old. I can see how it might be a bit big to put in a 4 or 5 month old baby's mouth who is teething.

The Bottom Line:
A great teething alternative to other toys and pacifiers. For more information visit the RazBerry Teether site.

Price:
$3-$4.50

Where to Buy:
Amazon

Rating: Great

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Introducing...

Baby Shower Savvy! This is the site I have been working on that I referred to in a post last week. I'm still working on building content but feel I have a really good start! My focus is to provide a free resource for baby showers. I want others to be able to save time and money and still throw a great baby shower. Anyways, if you could pass the site onto anyone who is having or throwing a baby shower, that would be great! And if you have any ideas, input, stories, or pictures from your baby shower or a baby shower you have attended that I could add, that would be great as well. Thanks for checking it out!

Just wanted to give some of you a heads up on a great sale at Kohls. A bunch of the Fisher Price gear is 50% or more off. They have the rainforest & papasan swings for $50-60 which is a steal. So for any of you needing baby gear like this, click this link for more info.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

YoBaby Yogurt

YoBaby Yogurt is an organic yogurt, specially made just for babies.  


Pros:  It is made with whole milk which is recommended for children up to 2 years.  Whole milk is important for babies and toddlers because it contains a higher amount of fat which is essential for brain development.  It also contains DHA which helps develop the visual and central nervous system.   I like that everything in YoBaby yogurt is organic.  I love that they come in a 4 oz size which is optimal for baby.  It's also nice to be able to feed your baby yogurt as it has cultures that aid in digestion.  YoBaby comes in an original, simply plain, fruit & cereal, and drinkable. The texture is very smooth. Rowan has really enjoyed this yogurt and eats one everyday.  He started eating this yogurt at around 7 1/2 months as a recommendation from his pediatrician.

Cons:  It has a bit of a runny, sticky consistency which I think can be attributed to the amount of fat. It also has a bit of a bland flavor from my perspective but probably tastes a lot different to a baby. It also tends to get watery a the top and the fat comes to the top as well.  This can be fixed with some good stirring.  I think it is a bit pricey - around $3.50 for a 6 pack, but then again when do you put a price on something that is good for your baby and aids with development?

The Bottom Line:  Great Product, Pros definitely outweigh the cons.  To learn more about YoBaby yogurt, visit the YoBaby yogurt site.

Price:  $3.50 for a 6 pack

Where to Buy:  Most grocery stores carry this

Rating:  Great

Monday, October 13, 2008

Boppy Pillow

The Boppy Pillow is yet another mom inspired invention. It was intentionally designed for young babies who couldn't yet sit up by themselves. It has many versatile uses and has quickly become a very popular product.

Pros:
This C-shaped boppy pillow is a simple idea but serves it's purpose well. It can be used around your tummy as a breastfeeding support. You simply put the pillow around your waist and have automatic support for baby. I have heard that it isn't optimal for mothers who have had c-sections as it puts pressure on the incision. I have had both of my boys via c-section and had no problems using this pillow. If anything, I felt like it alleviated the pressure. Because baby rests on the pillow, it helps mom relax as well, giving her arms a much needed break. It isn't just for breastfeeding, it works great with babies who are bottle feeding too. Once your baby is a little older, it is great for tummy time. It helps strengthen neck and back muscles. You can also prop baby on their back so that they can look around while having a support system. I also loved using this pillow for the boys to sit in the middle of, around 5 months, when they couldn't quite sit up by themselves, but really wanted to. If they tumble to the side, they have a soft landing. Another great feature of the boppy - slip covers. I have a few different covers including the boppy luxe cover. It is a soft velvety cover that I would definitely recommend. I love that if my baby spits up on this pillow I can easily change the slipcover. The covers wash up wonderfully too. Lastly, this pillow is awesome at holding it's shape. When I had Chandler, I had a similar pillow to the boppy, but it wasn't the boppy. It served it's purpose but got lumpy and didn't have the interchangable slip covers. I've had my boppy for 9 months and it still has a great shape and hasn't gotten lumpy. To the right is a picture of my sweet Rowan laying on his boppy at the hospital.

Cons: I wish that this pillow were a little smaller in ways so that you could take it places with you. Because of the size, it seems too large to take on an outing or in the car. Other than that, I think the boppy is great in every way.

The Bottom Line:
Great pillow, great investment! The Boppy Pillow website also offers more information on this pillow.

Price: $30-$35 for the pillow, $10-15 for slipcovers

Where to Buy:
Target, Babies R Us

Rating: Excellent

Saturday, October 11, 2008

V-Tech Move and Crawl Ball

Learning to crawl is a huge milestone in a babies' development.  It's fun to encourage and want them to crawl.  (Ok ok - so I encouraged my first one and didn't do it so much with my second son.  After all, it's all downhill once they get mobile, right?)


Pros:  The is a fun interactive toy for babies.  It rolls around, giggles, laughs, sings, and lights up.  Once baby gets to it, they can push different buttons to hear animal sounds and names.  It has 2 volume settings so you can set it louder or on a quieter mode. Like most toys, it has a little song it sings everytime you turn it on. It's fun to see your child reach for it only for it to roll away a little bit and encourage them to come after it.  

Cons:  This toy is HEAVY.  It weighs a couple pounds and is not such a good idea if you have an older child who likes to throw things, aka my son.  I assume it has to be heavy for it to roll around the way it does, but I think it is a little ridiculous. And the ball doesn't even roll that far, just around in circles. The animal sounds will also randomly go off without your baby touching the buttons which I think is a little annoying, as well as the song that the balls sings over and over.

The bottom line:  Cute toy but very heavy  for a baby toy and somewhat annoying.

Price:  $12.99

Where to Buy:  Amazon

Rating:  Not So Great

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Gerber Fruit & Veggie Puffs

So your baby has mastered pureed foods.  He is starting to get that cute pincher grip down with those chubby little fingers.  Self feeding.  


Pros:  These airy light puffs are a great starter food.  They dissolve almost instantly and have a nice light flavor.  They are shaped like stars and are thick enough for little fingers to get ahold of.  The packaging is great as it is a re-sealable container.  This means you can throw it in the diaper bag and go.  They also have lots of different flavors.  I think they are a great starter food and help pave the way for cheerios & small crackers.

Cons:  My only complaint about these is the fact that they have little nutritional value and a baby would have to eat a LOT in order to get any calories out of them.   80-90 puffs are only 25 calories.  But what do you expect from a first finger food?

The Bottom Line:  Convenient, delicious, and great for babies learning to self feed.

Price:  $1.99

Where to Buy:  Most retailers such as Walmart, Target, Kmart.  Can also be found at grocery stores

Rating:  Great

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Any parent of a baby or toddler probably experiences diaper rash.  They are horrible.  A sad crying baby who doesn't understand why they have a sore bottom.


Pros:  It goes on smoothly and wipes off easily as well.  It is one of the cheaper diaper rash creams   The original is probably the best as far as protection.  It is made up of 40% zinc oxide which is the barrier that really helps seal out wetness & chafing.    The original is a very thick cream and a little goes a long way.

Cons:  The first time I put this in my son Chandler my husband asked why he smelled funny.  I couldn't agree more.  I think this diaper rash cream has a very potent smell which is not exactly pleasant.  It might be the high concentration of zinc oxide - whatever it is, it stinks.  It also didn't clear up his diaper rash all that quickly.  Yes, I know that every child is different, but if a product doesn't work well and quickly, I won't use it again.

The Bottom Line:  If you don't mind the scent, it is worth trying.

Price:  $4.00-$6.00 depending on the retailer

Where to Buy:  Any major retailer or grocery store.  I've seen this all over the place

Rating:  OK

Sunday, October 5, 2008

New Site & a BIG Thank you

I want to thank everyone who has been reading, it's been fun to have feedback on the products I am reviewing.  I am currently working on another site - an informational one.  Since it takes a lot of time to review a new product everyday, I am probably only going to  be doing around 3  a week until I get the content for my other site up and going.   I know I've told a few about my new site but I'm going to keep it a surprise to the rest of you until I feel I have adequate content on it. Between getting my new site up, and taking care of my two little guys and hubby.....well, you get the point. Thanks again everyone for your support.  I promise I will have a new product review up by Tuesday!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The winners for the giveaway are:


Jayme & Christine!!

If you two would e-mail your address and preferece of size for your child's Halloween shirt I will get them off ASAP!  Thanks for entering.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Last Day

Today is the last day to enter the Halloween Giveaway.  For more information, click on the link at the top of the right sidebar.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Baby Einstein DVD's


I remember the firs time we popped in Baby Mozart after Chandler was born.  It was my first time watching baby einstein and I couldn't believe someone had produced a show with lava lamps and people playing with toys.  My opinion of baby einstein has since changed.


Pros:  We often joke at our house that baby einstein works as well as tylenol or motrin.  With it's simple shapes, colors and moving objects, the movies easily captivate their target audience.  One night when Chandler was about 3 months old he woke up screaming.  My husband and I tried to console him without success.  After about 10 minutes of screaming we put on a baby einstein dvd.  He immediately stopped crying and started cooing at the movie.  I was sold.  Over the last couple years we've managed to collect 12 of the baby einstein movies.  Some of the movies are geared towards babies at birth, some at 3+ months, 6+, 9+ & 12+ months.  These are great educational movies and Chandler has learned his shapes and colors from Baby Newton as well as some basic signing from Baby Wordsworth.  At almost age 3, he still enjoys watching any Baby Einstein movie we put in.  Rowan loves them too.  

Cons:  My only complaint is that it gets old watching these over and over.  

The Bottom Line:  Great line of products, very entertaining for babies and toddlers.

Price:  $14.99 per DVD 

Where to Buy:  Walmart, Target, Kmart, Amazon

Rating: Excellent!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Hyland's Teething Tablets

I've always felt bad that little  babies have to go through the teething process.  It causes them pain and they don't even know why.  I had these teething tables recommended by a friend and decided to try them.


Pros:  This is a homeopathic blend which is nice because it is an alternative to tylenol/motrin.  I took this from the Hyland's site, so here is what is in them and what they do:
Calcarea Phosphorica 3X HPUS - supports dentition
Chamomilla 3X HPUS - for irritability
Coffea Cruda 3X HPUS - for wakefulness and diuresis
Belladonna 3X HPUS (0.0003% Alkaloids) - for redness and inflammation
In a base of Lactose (milk sugar) NF

These tablets are tiny, about 1/4 the size of a dime.  They dissolve almost instantly so you can give them to babies when they are very young.  Rowan cut his bottom two teeth at 3 1/2 months and we were able to give them to him at this age.  He experienced almost immediate relief and it was nice for me to have peace of mind knowing he was experiencing relief.  

Cons:  There is no quick fix for any baby.  I've talked to moms who feel these don't work for their child.    You can give 2 tablets every few hours but some still feel like they don't work.  Every child is different so every child will react different.  

The Bottom Line:  These are definitely worth trying, they have been a great help in the teething process for our little guy

Price:  $6 for 125 tablets

Where to Buy:  Walmart

Rating:  Excellent