The rumors are true: taking care of yourself and taking care of a newborn baby as a new mom is incredibly difficult and overwhelming. For the last few months, I have spent most days struggling to find time to eat or shower -- never mind the fact that I’m also juggling a freelance career, a strict sleep training schedule for my daughter, basic housework, and my own social life. It’s been a tough but exciting journey. It’s also been full of more baby items than I ever thought possible. While many have been good, a few stand out as truly fantastic. Below is a look at the things that have helped me survive every single stressful day, with enough time to truly enjoy all the little moments:
Miku Smart Baby Monitor, $399 at Amazon: The Miku checked all my boxes for a perfect monitor, making it worth the hefty price tag. The Miku Smart Baby Monitor keeps a close eye on your little one: it uses SensorFusion technology to track your baby’s breathing, sleep patterns, movement, and sound, as well as the temperature and humidity of the room. It alerts you if baby is no longer moving, has a setting to play white noise to lull baby to sleep, features an HD camera that allows you to see everything whether it’s day or night (a blessing and a curse for anxious parents), and works with an app on your phone so you can watch baby in their crib no matter where you are -- even if you’re not home. Another plus? The Miku looks surprisingly sleek and chic thanks to the minimalist design and cord protector. I can rest easier with just a glance at my phone, and as an anxious mom, that’s all I can ask for.
Happiest Baby Sleepea Swaddle, $25.95 at Amazon: Most babies love to be swaddled, but swaddling with a blanket is not easy -- I found that the hard way when I tried it, my daughter always managing to bust out within minutes, making bedtime and sleep more than a little strenuous. So, I bought the Happiest Baby Sleepea Swaddle, which was created by baby sleep expert Dr. Harvey Karp. The Sleepea swaddles baby in less than two minutes. There’s no complicated wrapping technique; you just tuck baby’s arms under soft material and keep them in place with Velcro (that is actually quiet), then zip up the front. The two zipper feature allows you to change baby in the middle of the night without unswaddling their arms, and there’s even a little vent on the legs to keep baby from overheating. I’m not exaggerating when I say that our sleep completely changed when we started using it.
Lululemon Align Pant, $98 at Lululemon: These Lululemon leggings are one of only a handful of clothing items that I successfully wore before pregnancy, throughout almost my entire pregnancy, and after pregnancy. They stretched with my growing belly up until about 30 weeks, and they were comfortable the entire time, which is impressive, considering almost no clothing is comfortable when you’re pregnant. They went right back to my post-pregnancy size as well, and the stretchy but tight waistband has been just as comfortable since giving birth. Plus, black goes with everything.
Owlet Smart Sock 2 Baby Monitor, $299 at Target: The Owlet is a little sock that monitors baby’s heart rate and oxygen levels. If the numbers dip below the appropriate level, an alarm sounds to alert the parents. As an anxious new mom, the Owlet has given me peace of mind throughout the night. It just makes me feel more comfortable knowing my daughter’s vitals are being monitored even while I’m sleeping.
American Eagle Chill Bike Shorts, $14.97 at American Eagle: My personal experience with a postpartum body is that you never want to wear anything besides stretchy leggings, except when you’re hot (a combination of hormones and weather can make this happen), and then you want to wear shorts. Enter these bike shorts from American Eagle. They’re stretchy in the best way, very comfortable, not see-through, and have a wide, high waist that accommodates your shrinking belly.
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