3 Baby Gear Secrets That Make New Parent Life Easier

3 Baby Gear Secrets That Make New Parent Life Easier

March 11, 2020

3 Baby Gear Secrets That Make New Parent Life Easier

3 Baby Gear Secrets That Make New Parent Life Easier
3 Baby Gear Secrets That Make New Parent Life Easier

Apart from sleep deprivation, one of the biggest challenges of new parenthood is figuring out the minutiae of your new daily routine. How, exactly, does one prepare a bottle using just one hand, without spilling any milk? Or push a grocery cart and a baby at the same time if your baby can’t sit up yet? And how, exactly, do you minimize the toll of those frequent nighttime wakings?

For almost every one of those challenges, there is a parenting hack. Or at least, an easier way to do things. We’ve partnered with Graco to share a few of the ways you can use your gear to make your new parenthood routine a little smoother.

Minimize Transitions

Babies don’t love being interrupted. Which can make getting out of the house feel like a bit of a logistical puzzle. Is it worth putting them in their car seat, only to take them back out again just for a quick run to the store? That’s why travel systems are so popular with new parents. The coordinated infant car seat and stroller combo cuts down on how often you have to buckle and unbuckle your baby, which means you can put them in the car, take them back out again, pop them onto a stroller, and then repeat the process all using the same carrier.

It isn’t always about making your baby’s transitions easier, though. Sometimes the best gear features make your life easier. For example, the Modes Nest Travel System is basically three strollers in one: you get an infant car seat and an infant bassinet to cover your newborn needs. And when your baby outgrows those, the travel system converts to a toddler stroller (with the option to face you or face the world) which means one less thing to research and buy in a year.

And if you’ve ever tried to assemble baby gear, you’ll appreciate the Slide2Me feature that lets you adjust your baby’s seat to three different heights with a simple sliding mechanism (aka no taking the stroller apart). That way you can keep your baby as close as possible while strolling. Which might not sound like a big deal until you’ve had to bend over and seamlessly pop a pacifier back in your baby’s mouth without stopping your forward motion (10 times in a row).

As for the aforementioned grocery store conundrum? For quick trips, the expandable storage space underneath the Modes Nest Travel System holds more than you’d imagine (big enough for necessities, small enough to prevent impulse shopping).

Keep the Baby Contained

When you have a new baby, it’s always best if people can come to you. But sometimes you just want to say yes to the yearly BBQ or friends-night-in without having to figure out childcare or leave early for naptime. A playard can give you the flexibility to visit friends and family without worrying about a changing table or crib (and with the removable bassinet that comes with a playard like this one, your baby can nap nearby in an environment that feels more like home).

And for those get togethers that might require putting your baby down for a nap in a quiet room and then closing the door, you can hack an on-the-go monitor with two phones in Facetime mode (there are even monitor apps you can download to pair between phones). Or pop your home monitor off the mount and bring it with you. There’s nothing that says you can’t turn a friend’s guest room into an ad hoc nursery.

Bonus tip: when your baby starts moving, the playard can provide a much-needed containment area when visiting friends or family who haven’t baby proofed.

Let the Gear Do the Work

The biggest adjustment to new parenthood is probably the middle-of-the-night routine (remember that thing about sleep deprivation?). The baby cries. You get up to soothe them. Repeat. It’s just the way things go. But newer gear options are stepping in to help ease those moments when your baby doesn’t need to be fed or changed, but simply requires a light rocking or soothing.

For example, the cry-detection technology in this bassinet actually hears your baby’s cries and then automatically enables a series of soothing motions and sounds, adjusting until it finds the one that helps your baby get back to sleep (yes, this is real life). Which means you only have to get up when your baby genuinely needs it, instead of every time they accidentally startle awake or are awoken by a loud noise. The best part? While versions of this technology have been on the market for a while (usually at a price point of $1,000 or more), this one does it for under $300.

New parenthood will always be a time of adjustment. But if there’s anything to be learned from things like hook and loop swaddles and plushie pacifiers, it’s that sometimes the best parenting hacks are nothing more than a simple re-imagining of your gear. Though grocery delivery also helps.

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