We have been raising children for almost 16 years, in three different states, 4 different cities/towns, in some pretty unusual square footage situations…We had our first two in a tiny city apartment, you know the ones you hear about in NY city, where everything happens in one room? We had had loft beds and fold up tables before there was IKEA. Next we moved in with my in-laws, where we raised three children in a two bedroom and one bathroom space. After that we had 4 kids in a 900 square feet student townhouse. 5 kids in a 1,500 sq. ft. rental house (ONE bathroom), and now we are in 2,500 sq. ft. house with six kids (with 3 bathrooms!). I have learned that you can perfectly raise children without a changing table, baby swing, or Exersaucer. However here are my top 5 items that I have enjoyed in most of those spaces and wouldn’t want to go without.
1. Baby bouncer.
These are great for having a safe place for baby to hang out while you do stuff. They are small and light weight to carry from room to room. I love them for feeding babies their first rice cereal.
2. Mclaren umbrella stroller.
I only discovered this stroller with our last baby. Too bad. I could have used them on a couple trips to Europe. They are so lightweight, great for city travel, yet sturdy. They are high enough where you don’t have to bend over, and easy to push even an older child. The only drawback is that they don’t work for infants; I mostly use carseats for that age.
3. Trip Trapp chair.
I could never afford the real Tipp Trapp by Stokke. I bought a cheaper version somewhere else. What I like about these chairs is that you can use them from about 12 months to adult. The chair grows with the child by changing the hight of the foot rest and seat. Often when babies grow out of high chairs they are still too small to sit on a regular chair. I like that toddlers can be strapped in, but older kids can climb up and down themselves; it saves a lot of lifting.
4. Ikea crib.
We bought this bed for about $100 and used it with all of our 6 children. It converts into a toddler bed. It is sturdy (believe me, if it can survive us, it can survive anything) and a great value for the price.
5. Infant bath tub.
I know you don’t really need these, but boy do they make bath time easier….
How about you, what is your favorite baby gadget? Are you secretly hanging on to a couple even though you are way past the baby stage? I know I am going to have a real hard time getting rid of our crib…and the chair. So many memories…
Have a great day,