Big Gay List Product Reviews

A Few of My Favorite (Newborn) Things

Having been a father for 134 days now, I think it’s fair to say that I’m an expert on parenting...

Having been a father for 134 days now, I think it’s fair to say that I’m an expert on parenting.

Just kidding. I have no freaking clue what I’m doing.

But for the sake of this post, I’m a professional. A full-time stay-at-home dad who has successfully kept his twins alive for more than four months. That should make me qualified to provide you, the reader, with life-changing advice. Right? Right.

But I haven’t done it alone. I’ve had assistance from a few consumer items that helped me through this difficult time. Also, from my tirelessly supportive husband. But mostly from the consumer items.

These are my must-haves for any new parent:

BABYBJÖRN Bouncers

I’ve known of BABYBJÖRN for a while now, and loved the look of their products even before I became a dad. If you’re anything like me and feel kind of bad about dropping your child in a motorized rocker and just walking away, the BABYBJÖRN Bouncers will be perfect for you. It isn’t motorized. It’s just a molded metal rim with a fabric cover that your baby reclines onto. It bounces naturally as the child moves, or from the light tap of your foot. It’s the same bouncing motion that you’ll quickly learn helps put your child to sleep, without the expense, technical glitches and cold mechanization of a motorized bassinet.

Additionally, if you’re a parent of twins, you’ll be able to have one child in your arms while comforting the other by tapping the BABYBJÖRN with your foot. OR you can copy us and buy two, tapping each child with a different foot, while you juggle.

And if you can find it, get the wooden toy attachment. Our twins absolutely love it!

Where we got it from? Jet

How much did it cost? $140.79  

Chicco Car Seats & Double Stroller (or pram, in Australia)

When I was searching for a stroller for the twins, I knew I wanted to invest in a travel system. Having separate car seats and strollers from different companies didn’t seem sensible. And I’m a sensible guy. Apart from the whole having twins thing.

The Chicco Cortina Together Double Stroller and Keyfit Infant Car Seats are perfect. Together they are a one-stop travel system that allows you to take your car seat directly out of the car and pop it into the stroller. Plus it has a fully-reclining rear seat for a bassinet, a large zip-open basket, independently adjustable canopies, an interchangeable arm bar, kiddie cup holders, a parent’s tray and a convenient one-hand activated fold. Don’t know what all that means? Me neither. I’m just copying and pasting from the website.

What I do know is just how easy it is to handle. You can pop the car seats in and out with just one hand. You can dump them in the stroller. You can sit them on the ground. You can slot them right back into the car.

Don’t take my word for it. When the nurses at the hospital saw our car seat, they gushed that it’s the brand they recommend. They were more impressed by the stroller than by the babies. Clearly, we did something right.

Where we got it from? Amazon

How much did it cost? $299.99 (stroller) + $179.99 (per car seat) = $659.97 (travel system)

Baby Tracker App

When you’re parents of multiples, it can quickly become difficult to keep track of who was fed when. Heck, when you’re parents of singletons it can become difficult to keep track, especially if more than one person is doing bottle feedings at different times of day. A lot of parents use whiteboards or even paper to document this information, but having a master list at home isn’t ideal if you plan on being an adventurous parent who ventures into the sunlight in the first few weeks. Enter: the Baby Tracker smartphone app.

We were drawn to it initially because it syncs instantly between multiple devices. That meant we could split the kids up with different family members, or hand them off in the middle of the night without needing to discuss when and what needed to happen next. Who wants to talk to another human being at 3:00am?

Once we started using it, we quickly realized that syncing was far from the most useful element. You can keep track of nearly every aspect of your child’s life. From baths to first smiles, growth records and health details, Baby Tracker became our go-to digital source for all things baby. So much so that we would open it up at the doctor’s office and give accurate answers to questions like “How often are they pooping?” and “How long are their naps?”

Oh, and you can upload photos. It’s basically a less hip, data-filled version of Instagram.

Where we got it from? App Store

How much did it cost? Free

Milk Snob Car Seat Cover

If you decide to venture out of the home with newborn baby twins, then you quickly learn that privacy is no longer a luxury. People love all babies, but twins?! Twins are next-level exciting.

So parents of twins have to quickly get comfortable fielding questions and being prepared for one in every ten people to pop their dirty fingers in your baby’s face without asking. So if you’re anything like me (OCD and worried about people touching your pre-immunized nuggets), I suggest you purchase these car seat covers. They’re just a stretchy fabric shield that completely covers the car seat and the baby while you’re carrying them around.

We absolutely love these covers from Target, and so does everyone else. They provide the perfect amount of fashionable shade for your kids, and are the classy alternative to getting “DO NOT TOUCH MY CHILDREN” tattooed across your face.

Where we got it from? Target

How much did it cost? $32.99

Eddie Bauer Fashion Heather Back Pack

I think dads gets the sh** end of the stick when it comes to looking cool as a parent. It makes sense. Women were traditionally the primary carers, and many women have better fashion sense than dads. But it’s 2018. I’d like to see some more fashionable male accessories, please.

That’s why this backpack made the cut. It’s a rare backpack in a sea of diaper bags, and its design is simple enough to match any outfit without being too boring or bland. I like the bag enough that I would have purchased it pre-parenthood.

And while it’s easy on the eyes, it’s also quite functional. Let’s be honest, once you have two screaming children, you quickly learn that ease and functionality are all that really matter. This bag has a main compartment with large enough pockets to securely hold four small bottles or two large ones, and various powders too. Additionally, the exterior includes an insulated bottle pocket to keep bottles warm or cold, and another easy-to-access pocket to store your wet wipes. It also comes with a matching changing pad, so there’s one less thing to add to your registry.

Where we got it from? Target

How much did it cost? $49.99

Babies R Us Wipe Warmer

Baby Wipe Warmer

If you’re wiping your child’s bottom with anything other than a previously warmed wipe, you’re missing out. We learned the hard way that cold wipes can startle a tranquil baby – especially when they’re very young – causing them to scream and cry.

There are a ton of options out there, some of which are very expensive. But this device is already an extravagant first-world luxury, so dropping real moulah to warm a baby’s bumhole feels frivolous. We found the basic Babies R Us Wipe Warmer to work just fine. It’s only $24.99, it comes with two heating settings for your babies specific needs, a window to look in and check on wipe counts, and a changing light that turns off automatically after 10 minutes. Additionally, in comparison to other wipe warmers we experimented with in-store (Munchkin Warm Glow Wipe Warmer and Prince Lionheart EVO Wipes Warmer), we found the latches on this one to be more secure.

Where we got it from? Babies R Us

How much did it cost? $24.99

Infantino Flip Advanced 4-in-1 Convertible Carrier

Before the babies were born, I tried searching for a twin-specific version of those high-tech slings that carry your baby upright on your chest. Every dad looks bad-ass with a baby strapped to him. Two babies would make me twice as bad-ass.

But that isn’t really convenient. How would I put one child in the front and then put the other child on the back, or visa versa? And what would my physiotherapist say?

The compromise was a really nice carrier that could be used a few different ways and, if possible, stay with us as our twins grew from infancy to toddlers. That’s how we found the Infantino Flip Advanced 4-in-1 Convertible Carrier. It’s perfect. There are four ways to carry your child: facing-in (narrow seat), facing-in (wide seat), facing-out and back pack. And because you can adjust the shoulder straps, waist belt and head support, your child can use this carrier from 8 to 32 lbs (3.6 to 14.5 kgs).

Where we got it from? Babies R Us

How much did it cost? $29.99

Q-Tips (or cotton buds, in Oz)

If you’ve had the pleasure of popping a lubricated cotton bud* into your constipated child’s bum, then you’ll understand why this item has made the cut. After 24 hours of grunting, bright red faces, and concerns that your child may pass out and die, you’ll wish you had known about this trick, too. The gentle insertion of a well-lubricated cotton bud can unleash volcanic geysers of pent-up poo. Ahh, the delights of parenthood.

Where we got it from? Target, but you can get them, well, absolutely everywhere.

How much did it cost? $2.00 – $24.00 (500 counts)

*Click on this link if you’re interested in why American’s call cotton buds q-tips.

Soothie Shapes Pacifiers (or “dummies”, down under)

I know the pacifier topic is highly debated in the parenting community, but for a number of reasons, including having premature babies that required medical-grade pacifiers to ease the transition to oral feeding, we decided to keep giving our twins pacifiers.

In Australia they haven’t had the Soothie Shapes Pacifier for long, so I’m often reminded just how unique they are. I happen to be a massive fan, and here’s why: The Soothie Shape is unique in comparison to other pacifiers because it has an indentation for your finger, like a plastic thimble which the baby sucks. Your finger is basically in your child’s mouth, which feels soft and warm and nipply to the baby, and cute and connected to you. I also found that it was easier for me to understand whether they were hungry or irritable, which also aided in the bonding process.

Where we got it from? Target

How much did it cost? $2.99 (2 pack)

Woombie Swaddle

Finding the perfect swaddle for your child can be a nightmare, especially because they seem to grow so quickly, developing arm and leg strength that makes previously perfect swaddles useless. I’ll be writing about our swaddle journey and the NUMEROUS swaddles we’ve experimented with down the line, but because we’re focusing on newborns here, I wanted to highlight our original favorite: The Woombie.

The Woombie is a kind of the anti-swaddle swaddle. It’s a peanut-shaped pouch that you zip your baby up in, rather than trussing them up like a thanksgiving turkey as some swaddles make you do. Other swaddles can also be quite hot. This design is lighter and breathable. The Woombie can be zipped up and snapped on in under five seconds, which means your baby stays put once inside.

Where we got it from? Amazon

How much did it cost? $29.12

That’s our list. With the help of these ten products we were able to stumble through the first few months of fatherhood with slightly less hassle. I know word-of-mouth matters when deciding what to buy for your new baby, so take it from me… these products rock.

Until next time, stay crafty.

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3 comments on “A Few of My Favorite (Newborn) Things

  1. How did Art survive without all of these amazing things?! Luckily we never had to use the Q-tip procedure. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That was a great read thanks. I have baby number 3 on the way and really liked your recommendations. Cute pics too x

    Liked by 1 person

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