I wrote a post a couple of months ago (see it here) after receiving our TwinGo Carrier. Our twins were too little to wear on the back yet, so my husband and I had been wearing it as single carriers and loving it that way. As previously mentioned, as a single baby carrier the TwinGo is very comfortable and my favorite part is the large storage pocket in the front. So, if you're running a quick errand, or if having to park the stroller and wear your baby into the play gym, let's say, you can throw your phone, wallet, and keys in the carrier and be on your way!
Now that our twins are 6 months old and sitting independently, I finally built up the courage to start tandem wearing them occasionally. The first time was for a quick 30 minute walk through the neighborhood with my toddler. Going out without our massive double stroller was exhilarating!! Having my hands free to play with my son or hold his hands was amazing. By the end of the walk, I have to admit my shoulders were aching and I was totally ready to get the girls out. But still, I was so excited to have the ability to throw them both on and go out without a stroller! And they were happy little campers all snuggled up tight with mama!
Wearing two babies definitely requires some building up of strength and endurance, there's no way around that. I try to wear my girls for at least 30 minutes twice a week so that I build my strength, can last longer, and can keep wearing them as they get bigger.
The TwinGo is hands down the best tandem carrier option out there and here's why:
The TwinGo isn't just for twins - it works well with a baby and toddler as well since each carrier is good up to 40 pounds! When tandem wearing, just wear the heavier child in back.
You can purchase a TwinGo on their website or Amazon for about $215, or try to find one secondhand in a local MoMs (Mothers of Multiples) group. Used ones usually go for about $100 but are hard to find because they're in such high demand (which is a good way to justify purchasing one new - you'll get about half of your investment back after you're done using it!)
So, what do you think?? Do you tandem wear your kids? Would you? How do you get around with your littles? Share in a comment below!!
Disclaimer: Although I did receive this product and service free of charge, all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
KID GRID Photo in Brooklyn
There are a TON of amazing photographers in New York City these days - one for every budget and every style of photography. From natural to glam, in the studio or in the park. To really stand out in this market, one has to be exceptionally talented, creative, and a pleasure to work with. I'm thrilled to introduce to you one such photographer who is offering a really cool and unique product - KID GRIDS™.
KID GRIDS™ came about organically through over a decade of photographer and mother, Justine, shooting families and kids. It became so oft requested that she decided to start offering it as a stand alone experience. But what are KID GRIDS™? They're a series of images (20 for a single child, 16 for twins or siblings) that capture your child's movement and personality. Almost like snapshots from a video, or a flip book laid out. They tell a story and your child is the star! And they are really really cute!!
Because a range of emotion is ideal, a parent helping out at the shoot is key to getting the kids to feel comfortable and be themselves. Whether you have a goofball who makes silly face after face, or a baby who goes from laughing to crying, or a child who gets messy with his or her food, the sky's the limit for the fun captured in your KID GRID.
I was nervous but really excited to do the photoshoot with my twins. Justine's studio is in a beautiful warehouse located in Park Slope (near the B37 and R train, across from Whole Foods and 1 block from the Old Stone House) and it was nice and warm inside since we had planned on my girls going sans tops. We plopped them up in some high chairs, she arranged some white walls around them to get the lighting right, and got right to shooting! She had an assistant (who acts as lead photographer for some shoots) and was great at giving us directions for where to stand and how to get the babies' attention. It took them a while to warm up, and it was HARD to get certain shots such as them both laughing at the same time. REALLY hard! Twin parents, you feel me!
All in all I think Justine shot for about 15-30 minutes or so (it's all a blur of me acting a fool to get the babies to laugh). She then loaded the pictures on her computer and we sat down together to pick out the winners. I was hopeless at this. As my toddler was running around the studio, I just sat there nursing one baby and then the other going "Uh huh, uh huh" while she went through the bazillion shots. She had a vision, it was clear. But for me, it was like at the eye doctor when he's like "Which is clearer, this one or this one" and you're like "Ummm I have no idea, can we go back to that last one?!!" I'm the mother, I loved every single photo! But we had to knock it down to 16 photos that told a story. Yikes.
Lucky for me Justine was a pro and within about 15 minutes "we" were done and she had compiled the product: The babies are sitting all cute, they reach out and discover one another. Then they see something, rattles, and they appear in front of them. They're confused, they taste the rattles, they don't like them. They share and play, and then poof the rattles are gone.
I love how it came out and think it's such a unique piece of art to hang up on your wall. We went ahead and ordered the 16x24" gallery block and can't wait to see it and figure out where it's going to go. Stay tuned for an updated photo of it up on the wall!!
Many of her clients love the product so much they end up making it an annual thing. I think that's a really cool idea! What amazing keepsakes! The pricing is simple and not too painful - from $285 (includes the sitting and a ready to hang 11x14" metal or wood print). They can also create grids with less images, to gift a grandparent let's say. Get more info or book your shoot on her website here!
Disclaimer: Although I did receive this product and service free of charge, all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
Tumble Leaf on Amazon Prime Video
As if you needed a reason beyond the free 2-day shipping to get Amazon Prime, membership also includes an amazing array of books, movies, and TV shows to stream! Of course you will need a great internet provider to get the most of your Prime membership and video streaming, so be sure to check out what Infinity Dish has to offer.
I was recently compensated to watch and review an Amazon Original Series, but you know me - I'm no sell out! I only publish and promote what I genuinely love and this is no exception! On that note, I'm truly excited to introduce to you a super cute show you and your preschooler will love, that fosters lifelong creative learning, and is only available for Prime Members... I give to you, Tumble Leaf!
Season 2 of Tumble Leaf will premiere on Prime Video on May 6 and while totally bummed we missed out on Season 1 (still available online, of course), we had no problem jumping right in on the second season's episodes. You follow the main character, a sweet blue fox named Fig, on his adventures around his beautiful neighborhood, Tumble Leaf. When I say beautiful, I mean it. He lives on a shipwrecked boat on a sandy beach surrounded by crystal blue-green seas and deep blue skies! Made me a bit envious, actually.
The music, characters, and visuals are stimulating, appealing, and yet very gentle. It's definitely not one of those shows that gets your kids all hyper and crazy. It reminded me a bit of Franklin and Friends, actually. Each episode starts with a crab silently finding something on the beach (giving you and your child the chance to discuss what he or she thinks the item is and what it does) and tossing it up into Fig's "Finding Place", which rings some bells to tell Fig there's something new there. Fig rushes to look, saying, "The Finding Place! I wonder what we'll find today!" in such a sweet and innocent way. I just really love that part! It encourages our little ones to be inquisitive and make an adventure of every day! The episode goes on with Fig making use of that item in several ways through nature-filled adventures, discovering science through play. Tumble Leaf is seriously super cute, age appropriate, entertaining, and educational! Win-win-win!!
But you don't have to take my word for it. Season 1 of Tumble Leaf won daytime Emmys for Animation as well as Outstanding Pre-School Children's Animation, the Parent's Choice Gold Award, the Annie Award for Best General Audience Animated TV/Broadcast Production for Preschool Children... the list goes on.
Prime members can watch Tumble Leaf (and other shows and movies) through the Amazon Video app for TVs, connected devices and mobile devices, stream online, or download for offline viewing on iOS, Android and Fire devices. If you're not a Prime member yet, you can get a free 30-day trial here and check out what all the fuss is about!
Are you hooked on an Amazon Prime Original series? Are you a binge-watcher?? Share in a comment below!
Disclosure: This was a sponsored post through Kid Vuz, but all thoughts and opinions are my own and completely unbiased.
Spring Baby Shower Faves Giveaway
I'm thrilled to help announce the second annual Mommy Scene 2016 Spring Baby Shower Faves featuring a wide variety of baby shower gift ideas - mom-favorites, best sellers, and basic must-haves for families! Whether you are a seasoned a brand new mom, these products can help make life easier, more eco-friendly, and some of them are just plain adorable!
Gift Collection 1
Gift Collection 2
Gift Collection 3
Gift Collection 4
Gift Collection 5
Enter for the chance to win one of these FIVE Gift Collections!
This giveaway is sponsored by Mommy Scene and is open to US entries. FIVE winners (1 for each gift collection) will be chosen and displayed on the giveaway widget after the giveaway ends on May 31st, 2016. Mommy Scene and participating blogs are not responsible for fulfilling brand-sponsored prizes. Prizes will be shipped directly from each brand.
NY Baby Show Ticket Giveaway
If you're a new or expecting parent in the Tri-State area, the New York Baby Show is a must! You'll find amazing products to test out (150+ brands will be exhibiting, and you'll even find a stroller test track), samples and giveaways galore, helpful seminars, and fun activities for the kids. Keep reading for details and enter to win tickets below!!
Where: Pier 92 (711 12th Ave, Manhattan)
When: Saturday, May 14 and Sunday, May 15; 10 AM - 4 PM
Speakers & Seminars: Amazing seminars on topics from pregnancy to photography and carseats to breastfeeding. Check here for full schedule.
Kids classes & concerts: From Music Together to French Institute Alliance Française and Tambourine Kids, there's lots of entertainment going on for the kids! Check here for full schedule.
Relax: For your comfort, you'll find a mom's lounge, a dad's lounge, a nursing lounge, a kids' play area, and a cafe!
Tickets: $20 for individual and $30 for family (2 adults and up to 4 children); get 25% off with code "USJapanFam25"
I'll be giving away 10 individual tickets with 2 offered to each winner (kids are free). Should any winner only need 1 ticket, another winner will be selected for that extra ticket. So... we'll have between 5-10 winners depending! Open to US residents ages 18 and over. Giveaway will end Thursday, April 28 at 11:59PM EST. Winners will be emailed on Friday, April 29 and have 24 hours to respond before another winner will be chosen. Enter to win in the Rafflecopter box below - good luck and see you at the Show!
NYC Mother's Day Giveaway
We can't always count on our kids and our partners to celebrate us as much as we deserve on a daily basis, let alone on Mother's Day. With that in mind, I put together this fabulous giveaway full of fantastic pamper-licious products and services for mamas in New York City. Read about the prizes (valued over $1,100!!!) below and enter to win at the bottom! Good luck mamas - you ALL deserve to win, but alas, there can only be one...
Photoshoot with Christina Marotto Photography
Christina Marotto is a fabulous high-end lifestyle photographer in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn offering everything from boudoir to maternity to newborn and children sessions. Our grand prize winner will receive Christina's "Beauty Session" package, including full hair and makeup by Exclusive Stylist Danielle Paquette, a 60-minute photo shoot, 2 signature 11x14 prints with web copies, and 15% off any additional prints with digitals. What's more? Your kids can enjoy playing at indoor play gym Play Days and Parties during the shoot (Christina's studio is in the back)! A $700 value! (Read about my amazing experience with her newborn photoshoot here).
$150 Gift Certificate for Garden Acupuncture
Garden Acupuncture, located in the heart of Park Slope, is owned by Alex Goldberg & Lisa Metgzer - they’re not only partners in business but also in life, sharing two beautiful daughters. Named one of the top 5 places to get acupuncture in Brooklyn, Garden Acupuncture offers Traditional Chinese Medicine, including acupuncture, herbs and nutritional counseling. Their team has over 50 years of combined clinical experience and unique training, allowing them to offer specialized services for Women’s Health, Pain Conditions and Pediatric Care. Enjoy the one-on-one care and personalized service while you zen out in their tranquil space. Our grand prize winner will receive a Gift Certificate to Garden Acupuncture for Initial Consult, Examination & Treatment ($150 Value Gift Certificate expires 1 year from date of issue and is not transferable; does not cover herbs or supplements and fertility consult/services).
$25 Gift Certificate to The Coop
The Coop is the latest and greatest cafe to come to "Ba(b)y Ridge". Located just off the R-line's Bay Ridge / 95th Street Station (at 9504 4th Ave), this oh-so kid-friendly restaurant and coffee bar features a kid's indoor/outdoor play area (or "coop"), allowing parents and caregivers to enjoy their coffee, brunch, or beer/wine (alcohol license pending) while their littles have fun! At this family-run eatery you'll find plenty of organic grub, as well as the only "draft latte" and "draft cold brew" in all of Bay Ridge! Our grand prize winner will receive a $25 gift certificate to The Coop, to be enjoyed with or without her kiddos in tow!
In-Home Haircut by Laura Dyer
Freelance hairstylist and Brooklyn mom, Laura Dyer, brings 10 years of licensed experience right to your living room, offering in-home haircuts for children and adults! Our grand prize winner will receive one complimentary adult hair cut in the comfort of her own home ($75 value; travel fee may apply if outside of the Greater Bay Ridge area).
Custom 10" Cake from Gigi's Sweet Revenge
Whether you have an upcoming baby shower, birthday party, smash cake photo session, or just like devouring sweets that are almost too pretty to eat, Gigi's Sweet Revenge has got your cake needs covered! Our grand prize winner will receive credit for one 10" custom-design cake of her choice, which serves about 20 people. ($60 value; delivery fee may apply beyond the Greater Bay Ridge area).
You've seen those "crazy wrap" photos, but now is your chance to try one! Our grand prize winner will receive one It Works Ultimate Body Applicator ($59 value), a cloth wrap infused with a botanically-based formula to tighten, tone, and firm your skin in just 45 minutes, with progressive results over 72 hours.
$50 Gift Certificate to Dashing Diva
More than a nail salon, Dashing Diva is a destination! Featuring their own line of nail lacquer, they take sanitation seriously with each customer having their own personal manicure or pedicure kit and no whirlpools foot baths, razors, or reusable foot files. Our grand prize winner will receive a $50 gift certificate to the Brooklyn Heights location (130 Montague Street), courtesy of Allaya of Babydroppings.
3-Month Birchbox Subscription
Birchbox offers monthly deliveries of deluxe beauty, grooming, and lifestyle samples, tailored to your profile. Try cult brands, up-and-coming lines, and everything in between. Shay of Bebe To Bee will be contributing one 3-month Birchbox subscription to our grand prize winner, a $30 value.
Perfectly Posh carries naturally-based products to pamper your hands and feet, body, hair, face and lips, and even your man! Our grand prize winner will receive the Posh to Meet You Set ($19 value) which includes Good Vibes (hand crème), Strawberry Fields Forever (soap), and Santa Monica Smooth (lip balm).
dōTERRA Essential Oils
dōTERRA essential oils can be used for a wide array of emotional and physical wellness applications. For example, they can be diffused for calming effect, applied topically to reduce skin imperfections, or ingested as dietary supplements! Our grand prize winner will receive a 5mL bottle of Wild Orange for energizing and revitalizing, as well as samples of trio, blends trio, On Guard natural whitening toothpaste, and deep blue rub ($14 value).
There you have it! The giveaway is open to US residents over age 18 and will run through 11:59 PM EST on Monday, May 2. The grand prize winner will be chosen randomly and e-mailed on Tuesday, May 3. The winner will have 24 hours to respond before another winner will be chosen. Should the grand prize winner pass on any of the prizes, another winner will be chosen for those select prizes, so there's a possibility to have more than one winner! OK, ready... set... GO!!! (enter in the Rafflecopter box below).
Most pregnant women have heard about the option of donating or banking their baby's cord blood. Maybe you've flipped through a pamphlet in your OBGYN's office, read a blog post, or chatted with some cord blood bank reps at an Expo. But have you heard about placenta banking? Placenta blood banking (available ONLY with LifebankUSA) and placenta tissue banking can increase the amount and type of stem cells collected from cord banking. Stem cells are used to treat and cure over 80 diseases, with tons of other applications currently being studied - such as treating Alzheimer's, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and spinal cord injury!
Why Bank Placenta Blood?
60-70% more life-saving CD34+ stem cells can be collected when banking the placenta blood in addition to the cord blood, which is awesome for 2 reasons: 1) studies have shown that the more stem cells transplanted increases the likelihood of transplant success and survival, and 2) more stem cells available means the possibility to provide more than one treatment (to that same child or another friend/family member).
Why Bank Placenta Tissue?
It is believed that mesenchymal cells (MSCs) and MSC-like cells contained in the placenta may have amazing regenerative powers and studies are currently underway to look into their potential in therapeutic applications. Placenta banking increases the chances that the life of your child or someone you love could one day be saved by the very the organ and cells that once nourished your child in the womb.
How Can I Bank My Child's Cord Blood, Placenta Blood, & Placenta?
First you need to choose the bank (see my comparison list on Mommy Nearest) and sign up, usually between your 28th - 34th week of pregancy. There are tons of companies out there offering cord blood banking, and a few offering placenta tissue banking, but LifebankUSA is the only one that also offers placenta blood banking - meaning you can bank all 3 types together and the most stem cells possible!
Once registered, the collection kit will be sent to you, you'll discuss the plan with your delivery team, and after your baby is born the blood and tissues will be collected (completely painlessly to you and your baby) and sent to the facility for processing and storage.
But I Want To Delay Cord Clamping
No problem! In most cases you can delay cord clamping and still obtain enough cord blood and stem cells, especially if you also consider placenta blood and tissue banking!
I'm Having Multiples...
Some may incorrectly assume twins or siblings will be a close enough match if they are ever in the need of stem cells, but this isn't necessarily the case. Banking every child's cord blood, placenta blood, and placenta tissue will give everyone in your family the best chances. Think of it as insurance... not everyone can afford the highest level of protection, but if you can afford it, wouldn't you want it? Suppose cancer, heart disease, diabetes, or a debilitating car accident effects someone in your family and treating or curing it was as simple as having a close match of stem cells or placenta tissue available. The possibility of this happening is very real and so is the need to think seriously about whether or not cord blood banking is for you.
You can fill out the form here to receive a free info packet from LifebankUSA, or call them at 1-877-543-3226 with any questions. They have frequent promotions, may offer discounts for multiples as well as payment plans!
What If I Don't Bank The Placenta?
It'll go in the garbage as medical waste. Now, that's a real waste if you ask me!! Or... you could eat it. Seriously though, it's quite common practice in many cultures - even here in the US some moms will have the placenta encapsulated or made into a tincture in an attempt to avoid postpartum depression (I seriously considered it since something like 85% of twin moms will experience PPD!) Some other options include planting it under a tree, your "tree of life" so to speak. Or using it as a kind of stamp to create placenta art. Yep, that's a thing!
What about you? Did you bank any of your babies' cord blood, placenta blood, or tissue? Do you plan to? Why or why not - share in a comment below!!
Sponsored Post Disclosure: Opinions are my own and not swayed by compensation of any kind. This was a sponsored post, but I limit such posts to companies that meet my moral standards and I feel I can really stand behind (hey, I'm not a sell out).
Must Haves for Baby Twins
**updated in 2020: rock 'n plays and similar products have been recalled - DO NOT purchase these second hand, they can be dangerous**
In celebration of our twins' half birthday, I'd like to present you with the products I deem must-haves for baby twins - the things we simply couldn't have survived without! I'll also throw in a few which may not be *essential* but are fun to add to your baby registry or splurge on if you have the budget! Ready, set, GO!!!
Twins Prep Book & Classes
"What To Do When You're Having Two" will educate you on how to eat for three and get through your pregnancy, what to expect at the birth, how to tandem breastfeed or bottle feed, create schedules, interview pediatricians and nannies, you name it!! While you're at it, check out author Natalie Diaz' awesome website, Twiniversity, and in-person and on-line twins prep classes!
Tandem Nursing / Feeding Pillow
There are 2 awesome pillows out there for tandem feeding twins. Mothers tend to be divided over preferring one over the other, so I really can't say definitively that one is better. Personally, I preferred the My Brest Friend Twins Feeding Pillow but only because I found the height of the pillow higher and better for me. The Twin Z Pillow (see my review here) is the other beloved one, especially if you have a c-section or are bottle feeding. It also doubles as a baby lounger, and has built-in back support for mama.
Newborn Twins Baby Carrier
For newborn twins, some parents are able to figure out how to tandem wear using the Moby or a woven wrap. This mama? Not so much. For me, the WeeGo Twin Carrier was a lifesaver. Seriously. (Check out my "Life With Newborn Twins" video featuring the magic of this carrier!). The WeeGo is good from 3 pounds until they're about 6 months, however I found that once they hit 10 pounds each I couldn't use it anymore. I never got it to fit right and it hung from my shoulders quite painfully... still, when both newborns were screaming and they'd been fed and changed, this was often the only thing I could do to get them both quiet and asleep!!
Tandem Baby Carrier
For older twins, or even a toddler and baby, the TwinGo Carrier is amazing!!! You can wear them as 2 separate carriers (one for mom and one for dad, let's say), or remove one set of shoulder straps and hook them together so you can wear one child on the front and one on the back. They also have great pocket storage allowing you to forgo the diaper bag! Check out my full review here.
Stroller for Twins
Strollers all have various features which may or may not be what you are looking for. Many twin parents will go with a twin snap 'n go followed by a Baby Jogger City Select, or something like that, because they get the job done and are budget-friendly. But my family had some unique requirements. Being city dwellers with a toddler, newborn twins, and no car, I needed a stroller that had infant-compatible reversible seats, and preferred side-by-side over tandem alignment. The ONLY stroller out there that fit the bill was the StrollAir MyDuo. (If you're thinking Bugaboo Donkey works, no... it's not infant compatible - you have to use the bassinet until baby is 6 months or so). Overall, we LOVE LOVE LOVE our StrollAir!!! You can use with 2 seats (good for infant or toddler), 2 car seats (with universal adapters), 2 infant bassinets, or any combination of those! You can get standard never-flat tires or upgrade to the air-filled tires for a smoother ride (what we have). It's really an amazing stroller!! We also purchased the Englacha X-Rider sit/stand toddler board which has been a GREAT add-on, and later used the Lascal BuggyBoard Maxi+ with Saddle (which doesn't have as sturdy a seat but is easier to take the seat off while out and about to use as a stand board, or to pull the whole thing up and out of the way when not needed). The StrollAir MyDuo comes with 2 plastic rain covers, but we prefer the Manito (see my review here).
**2020 update note: StrollAir's newer version of the MyDuo is the TwinWay, and their tandem version of that is the Solo to Tango a great stroller that goes from single to double! Evenflo Pivot Xpand is another single - double converting stroller that we loved. Video reviews and demo's below!!
Eventually, unless you plan on one giant "family bed," you will need your twins in their own separate cribs. Some choose to go straight there from day one, others wait a month, six months, a year... It's up to you! You can start them off in co-sleepers or cradles, sharing a crib, or whatever, but one really unique option is the Babyhome So-Ro Twin Cradle (see my full review here). It rocks smoothly and has the babies' heads slightly elevated (good for reflux) and when they grow out of it at around 6 months it flips to the side and becomes a storage shelf (or a fun bartender's nook as some friends advised me!!)
I prefer BB Blocks (wooden numbered blocks) for weekly and monthly photos, but Milesone Cards have a twin-specific set with cards such as "We came home today" and "We smiled at each other for the first time today" which are really fun to use and keep (if you ever find the time to put together baby books for them)! They also include a set for each individual baby because let's face it, they will hit most milestones such as rolling over, sleeping through the night, and crawling at different times.
Crib Mattress, Cover & Sheet Savers:
Soothing & Pacifiers:
So there you go, my must-haves for twins! As far as diapers and toys and bathtime and all that, they need pretty much the same products as a regular singleton baby. I took the advice I received at my Twiniversity prep class which was to get one of each and get a 2nd after we're home and decide we NEED another. For example, we started out with two auto-rocking Rock 'n Plays (which they slept in for the first month - BUT THESE ARE NOW RECALLED - DO NOT GET ROCK N PLAYS even second hand!!!), and decided after a few weeks to go ahead and get a 2nd Baby Bjorn Bouncer and Fisher Price Swing. We still have only got one exersaucer, one play mat, one Bumbo seat, and one activity seat, and I just kind of rotate them through those! We also have one baby bath because I can only bathe one at a time, HA! You will most likely eventually need two cribs, two high chairs, and if you drive, two car seats.
My final piece of advice is to search for your local Mothers of Multiples group. You can save a TON by buying all of these products used and/or selling them used after you're finished with them!! This tip and many others are offered in my article "How to prepare for having twins" - check it out!
Did I miss any great twin-related products? Do you have some I should check out for older twins? Share in a comment below!!
Looking for a sleep sack, swaddle, or wearable blanket to help your baby sleep better? You've come to the right place! The following are products I have either personally tried with my own babies or have seen recommended time and time again by members of my online mommy groups. You probably don't have the budget to buy and try all of them, but read through and perhaps one will jump out at you as sounding like the best option for your little one!
The Halo SleepSack Swaddle is probably the most well-known swaddle out there. It's very very simple and easy to use, and you can swaddle baby with arms in or out. You can swaddle them super tight or just barely, whatever they like! Personally, I love this swaddle and have used it for all 3 of my children. The fleece one is nice and warm and I have a secret special use for it - in the winter I used it in the stroller because they couldn't keep on mittens and I didn't want their hands to freeze! When in the stroller's bassinet you can use it as a regular swaddle with hands in. When in the stroller seat, I put their arms through the vest but kept it unzipped with legs out (in the BundleMe), put their arms through the stroller straps, and then wrapped the swaddle around them to keep their hands in. Definitely a big no-no in the carseat, and I'm not a professional so I'm not sure if this is safe in the stroller or not, but it worked for us!
They retail for about $20 and you can them find on Amazon and in just about every baby store out there.
Bitta Kidda's sleeper and sleep sack provide built in "lovies" which a child can learn to use to sooth themselves. The awesome part is that it's safe because it's attached to their pajamas, as opposed to a loose lovie which can present a risk of suffocation (which is why there should be absolutely NO loose items in the crib with your baby - no stuffed animals, blankets, lovie, etc!). Another awesome feature is the crotch strap that keeps the sleep sack from getting twisted when they toss and turn - I haven't seen this feature in any other sleep sack and it's pretty awesome! They're also thin material so they can be worn with a thick pajama in winter or a onesie in summer. My girls have been wearing the Bitta Kidda sleep sacks, though they're are a bit young to use the lovies for comfort just yet. You can read my personal review here.
The Bitta Kidda sleeper goes for about $25 and the sleep sack for about $34 on Amazon or BK's website.
Nested Bean makes a swaddle and sleep sack that has a little weighted area on the chest, which is supposed to simulate the comforting feeling of a parents hand resting gently on them. The sleep sack can be warn backwards, for a child who sleeps on the belly and needs the weight on their back instead.
The swaddle retails for about $30 and the sack for $35 on Amazon of NB's website.
I've never tried or even seen Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit in person, but going by the way it gets recommended time and time again in my mommy groups, it must be pretty amazing. It's very thick (eliminating need for a blanket) and is supposed to "muffle baby's startle reflex". I've also heard it will delay the child rolling over (to tummy) since they're not quite as mobile in it, so many moms will graduate their baby to this when their baby learns to roll since a traditional swaddle isn't be safe at that point.
This one goes for about $40 on Amazon.
Other awesome sleepy-time stuff:
Lullaby Breeze Breathable / Washable / Waterproof Crib Mattress Cover - when baby starts rolling to tummy, it's terrifying!! But this mattress cover is breathable, giving you peace of mind to let baby go ahead and stay on their tummy if that's what they like. Check out my review here.
QuickZip Sheets - just zip the top part on and off to wash, no need to take the whole mattress out of the crib! They make sheets for all sizes up to California King, and also make pillow cases and waterproof crib mattress covers. Check out my review here.
Have you tried any of these sleep sacks? Or love another? Share in a comment below!!
About Me ^_^
I'm a NYC metro area mom blogger living in NJ with my Japanese husband & our 3 kids (twins plus 1). This blog is chock full of product reviews, family travel guides, and giveaways galore! It's also home to Bay Ridge Families, and several guides focused on kid-friendly activities and guides to South Brooklyn, Hudson Valley, and New Jersey, as well as family-friendly destinations beyond the NYC area (check the menu bar!)