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Real Mom Talk: Building A Baby Registry

Hi All! My name is Anna Richardella and I am a mom to 2 boys, wife, BCBA and parent coach. I recently gave birth to my second son and am here to share all of my opinions-- the good, the bad, and the ugly-- of building a baby registry. Since this was my second time around, I didn't add much to my registry but I found there was so much that I didn't use from my older son.

Let's start with my all time favorite baby product: The Nanit Camera. Don't get me wrong, the camera is a little pricey if you're only looking for a monitor/camera combo, but if you're looking for something a little more high tech, this might be for you. Some of my favorite features include a user friendly app, split screen, temperature monitor, and that it is easy to install. The Nanit App is great because you can monitor your child no matter the distance, as long as you have WiFi. We have the app on both of our phones and iPads. I will say that we did not use the Nanit Breathing Wear much because we got a lot of false alarms with our older son, and just used the Owlet instead. If you want a great camera with excellent picture and sound quality, add this to your registry immediately! Keep an eye out for Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales to get a great discount on the Nanit website or Amazon.

I'm not going to get into the whole breastfeeding/formula debate, please just feed your baby however works for you! But if you're opting to formula feed, the Baby Brezza Formula Pro is a game changer. I had no intention of buying this until I started fumbling with bottled water and powder at 2:00AM. The Baby Brezza dispenses the perfect amount of formula in increments from 2-10 oz. and has 3 temperature settings, as well as an option to dispense water only. My husband, who was initially against spending the money on this, was asking when I was going to take it out before we had our younger son. I will say, cleaning the Baby Brezza is a bit of a pain, but aside from that, I have no complaints! Again, be on the look out for deals-- I got ours on Zulily for a good price!

One more item that we could not live without as first- and second-time parents was the Owlet Smart Sock. This sock monitors your baby's breathing and heart rate and graphs awake times, deep sleep and light sleep throughout the night. As a mom with postpartum anxiety, the Owlet gave me peace of mind. The Owlet comes with 2 socks for little feet and 2 socks for bigger feet and you can order replacement socks in different colors on Amazon. My only complaint with the Owlet is that while the sock itself is easy to clean, the monitor that snaps into the sock gets gross and can only be wiped down (I learned from experience).

Some other baby items that we loved include the SnuggleMe Organic Pillow, Infantino 4-in-1 Carrier, Solly Baby wrap, Yookidoo Elephant bath toy, and Pack N Play with changing station. I would highly recommend asking for pajamas with zippers or magnets and onesies with fold-over mittens. We loved the Love to Dream arms up swaddles and Halo sleep sacks and swaddles for both boys, as well as SwaddleMe swaddles for our younger son. I also loved the Babylist bottle and pacifier boxes so that you could try out a variety and find out what your baby likes best. Oh and do yourself a favor and register for an electric nail file. Don't waste your time trying to clip or hand-file those little razor sharp nails.

For moms who plan to breastfeed, I highly recommend the Haakaa manual silicone pump. While I didn't have much success breastfeeding my older son, the Haakaa was a game changer with my younger son. I was able to collect and freeze a TON of extra milk just by collecting letdown.

Alright, lets get into the things we didn't use or wouldn't register for again...

I cannot explain to you how annoying snap pajamas are. Do not ask for them and if you get them, kindly return them. You do not want to be fumbling with what seems like 50 snaps while your baby is screaming at you in the middle of the night. Your exhausted self and wiggly baby will thank you! Same goes for the little mitten sets. Return them immediately. They will fall off, get lost, and your baby will still end up scratching their sweet face.

I had such high hopes for using the Boppy pillow. If I remember correctly, I even brought it to the hospital with me when I delivered my older son. Well, I'm here to tell you that I hate it. When I had my younger son, I decided to give it a second chance and was just disappointed. For me, the Boppy pillow just doesn't sit at the right height to be comfortable to me for either breastfeed or bottle feeding. I will say, my husband used it more than I did, but we could have done without it and just used a regular pillow.

Another item that I thought was a must-have was the Bumbo seat. After registering for it and researching later, I came to find out that it isn't great for babies' physical development including posture, hip mobility, and core strength. If you do end up wanting this, try to limit your baby's time to no more than 15 minutes a day and balance that out with lots of tummy and floor time.

Some honorable mentions for products that we didn't use or wouldn't buy again are a crib mobile, bottle warmer (just use a can koozie with hot water), infant swing, Boon lawn drying mat, and bottle sterilizer.

If you are a soon to be mom or veteran mom, I hope you've learned something! If you're a friend or family member wondering what to buy for a new parent, I hope you got some ideas!

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