Mama’s must haves

February 1, 2017

When I was a first time Mummy I honestly had no idea what I’d need. I was one of the first of my friends to have a baby so didn’t have the tips from friends that sometimes inspire great purchases. As you learn and as the months go by I started to realise what was brilliant to have and what I could have done without.

Here are my top products that I have found really useful first time around and also now as a Mummy of two.

Amelie didn’t sleep for about 18 months and I was shattered! This time around things had to change and I was prepared to try anything for a baby that slept! On recommendation of my sister (who has an angel baby) we tried the Sleepyhead and it really is brilliant. Evie is really snug in it which is perfect for the 4th trimester when they just want to be close to you or be held. It’s really portable so at first when they sleep everywhere you can very easily pick it up and move her sleeping place.
We have two covers for the Sleepyhead which I would definitely recommend for those nighttime sick emergencies!
This is a product I found two days before my c section and I am so glad I did. The Snugglebundl is a wrap for baby which you snuggle them up in and it then acts like a baby hammock, which also supports their neck. It’s fab as you can transfer them from car to pram to house without waking them – it’s the dream!! I also used this to help me lift Evie after my c section both in hospital from the crib to my bed and after as it was less awkward to lift her and move her in the Snugglebundl. I didn’t have this for Amelie and would definitely say its really useful for the early days.
We had a moses basket for Amelie which was good but I found myself always having to get out of bed to check she was OK in the night and found it quite hard to get her in and out after having an emergency c section. As I knew in advance I would be having a c section with Evie I looked for things that would make life easier and the Snuzpod was something that caught my eye at a baby show.
It’s brilliantly designed so the crib can attach to the side of most beds and even with the side up you can see your baby as it has a mesh side. If you need to feed baby in the night you can unzip the side and then roll them into bed really easily. I found this wonderful for helping my recovery after my c section and loved how close she was to me but still safe in her crib. You can also use it as a standalone crib, which we do now Evie is a little older and the top comes off so when they are very new they could sleep downstairs in it.
I think the Snuzpod is one of the nicest looking cribs out there and they also have gorgeous colours such as grey and blush pink.
4moms Rockaroo 
You know when your baby won’t settle, you’ve tried rocking, a soother, a sling, a feed and everything again and they’re still awake, crying and over tired? You throw them in the pram and go for a walk right? Well add a toddler into the mix and its a little bit more difficult. This is where the Rockaroo by 4moms comes into play. I stick Evie in it, turn on white noise and hooray she’s asleep! It might not work for all but it does for us and it’s saved me on numerous occasions.
Bugaboo Donkey / a double buggy
We’re on our second Bugaboo now, we had the Cameleon for Amelie which we absolutely loved, it handled really well, she always slept in it and seemed really comfortable in the seat as she got older. When Amelie got to about 18 months we decided to buy a lighter pushchair but I found it really hard to push so I changed back to the Bugaboo.
When we found out we were expecting a second we decided to buy the Bugaboo Donkey which is Bugaboo’s double pram/buggy which can also convert back into a single. With the age gap between the two I thought there would be times when Amelie needed to be in the pram (when she was tired, I needed her to be safe or needed to get somewhere quickly) but there would also be times on short journeys were she could or would want to walk. I love the Donkey for giving me the versatility to use it as a double or a single and the ability to change it really easily (it takes me about a minute to do).
I was worried that with a side by side double I would have problems getting in and out of shops and along pavements, but so far I haven’t had too many problems getting around with it.
I like that Amelie and Evie can see each other easily and I can also see them both.
To put it in the car I convert it back to a single and then stack the seats on top so it really isn’t too much bigger than my Cameleon. The downside of this buggy is its weight, its really heavy. I suppose it needs to be to support two children, but I do find it hard to lift into the car at times but for the practicality of it I forgive the weight of it!
We have a bouncer both up and downstairs for ease of popping your baby in it quickly when your toddler needs you… It doesn’t have to cost a fortune, we used Amelie’s hand me down bouncer upstairs and have borrowed my sisters Baby Bjorn one for downstairs.
Out of all of the ones we have tried we do love the Baby Bjorn bouncer. Evie seems so comfortable in it and was from an early age as you can adjust how upright it is. Now she is a little older she loves the activity bar and is really playing with the toys. It is an expensive buy but the quality is good, it looks good and doesn’t take up too much room.
A good highchair 
I am ashamed to say we are on our 3rd highchair! This is something we never got right but think we have now…
We started with a fairly cheap highchair which did the job but I found Amelie almost slipped out of it as she was very petite. I also found it very hard to clean as it was one that had a plastic material covering.
We decided to buy a new one a few months into weaning Amelie and bought on recommendation of a friend the Baby Bjorn high chair which we love! It is so easy to wipe clean, the tray lifts up easily, it can fit under the table so your baby / toddler feels like they are eating with the family and also looks good!
Amelie has recently decided she is too old for a highchair, which at nearly three she is, so we recently bought her the Stokke Tripp Trapp which again is proving fantastic. She can easily get up and down on her own, it can be adjusted as they grow and most importantly she sits well at the table in it.
Changing bag

When I had Amelie I wanted to find a changing bag that would look good as well as being practical. There wasn’t a huge amount on the market at the time but I found and really liked the Pacapod. It was really practical with the pods for feeding and changing but after two years it was looking a little tired so when we started buying things for Evie I started my search for a new one.

I love Instagram for inspiration and found Jem and Bea, a relatively new brand to the changing bag market. I loved the story about the founders who believed that a handbag is a wardrobe staple which reflects your style, identity and personality but were frustrated that there weren’t changing bags that could do the same.
My husband actually surprised me in the end with the Jem and Bea Beatrice which is a taupe soft leather bag with all the practical bits you’d need from a changing bag but the beauty of a designer handbag.
What I initially loved about all of the Jem and Bea range was that they didn’t necessarily look like changing bags and they could be something I could use with my girls in the morning and then pop to a meeting or out with friends and it not be noticeable I had a changing bag! I had my bag personalised so it has my initials on the tag in gold which I love.
Inside the bag is surprisingly large, with a main section, a changing mat section, an insulated bottle warmer pocket, two large sections for clothes or bibs, a zipped
pocket and the most useful part ever, a key holder – perfect when you have a crying baby and you need to rush into the house quickly.
I love that I can fit everything I need for Evie and then add everything I need for Amelie.
A sling
I didn’t really use a sling with Amelie, she didn’t ever get on with it and tended to cry anytime I put her in it. Evie however loves the sling. I used it so much in the early days when I needed to look after Amelie but Evie didn’t want to be put down and now it is fab if I’m just popping to the shops from the car and don’t want to put the pram up or carry the car seat in.
I think I will use it more in the summer for trips to the park with Amelie when Evie wants to see whats going on and doesn’t need to be asleep so much. We have a Baby Bjorn sling but from hearing experiences from friends if you’re thinking of baby wearing finding your nearest sling library and trying them out with your baby can be really beneficial.
What are your top baby buys? Anything you can’t live without?
Sarah xx



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  • Reply victorialjames February 2, 2017 at 11:59 am

    I have to agree with some of the things on your list… I love my ‘vintage’ Bugaboo Frog that I inherited from my sister-in-law. It’s 12 years old but still looks good and works perfectly. I also love my Pacapod changing bag that I got after a friend raved about hers, and my Baby Bjorn I have on loan from my brother. Since having my little girl I’ve heard so many positive reviews of the Sleepyhead and regret not having one for her as it took a while for her to be totally settled in her Moses basket. I haven’t got to the high chair stage just yet as my little girl is 4 months but I’ll be taking your recommendations on board when I do start shopping for one ?

    • Reply sarahsurreymama February 6, 2017 at 8:12 pm

      I think the IKEA one is supposed to be quite good but we haven’t tried it other than when out and about. The baby bjorn is fab. The Bugaboos do last well don’t they? X

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