Our little Ella turned one a few weeks ago and I want to take a moment to point out the most practical, most useful products that got us through the first year:
Peapod Travel Bed. Dont' know what we would have done and still do without this unbelievably lightweight travel bed. As a matter of fact, we still use it every day. Our nanny takes care of two little ones (Hello Julian!) and the little man sleeps in the Peapod every single day.
Oeuf Lounger: Another item we still use to this day. Ella *lived* in the Oeuf Lounger for a good portion of her early days. We remember the days bouncing her with our feet, so we can have dinner. Thank god for Oeuf! And ontop of being practical it's just oh so designy!
Candeloo Nightlights: These cute little nightlights are perfect in the beginning when you want to change or feed your little one without waking her up entirely with full on lighting. We use them now for 'ambiance' lighting when we put Ella down. Personally, I think they are just so adorable. (I have to admit though that they don't recharge as well anymore after a while. You can logon to the Candeloo website and get all kinds of advice on how to make the batteries work the longest. You can also get replacement bulbs and batteries)
Skip Hop Changing Pad Use it to this day... Love it.
Sleep Sheep Babies love to fall asleep with background noise. Something every parent learns shortly after the baby is born. The SleepSheep has been a steady companion in Ella's life to this day. Both G and I even like to fall asleep to it's wave or stream sounds.
Ergo Baby Carrier: G and I pretty much bought every carrier out there. The Ergo never appealed to me, to be honest, I always thought it looked too 'granola'. When Ella was about 10months old, we finally gave in. What an awakening! The Ergo is BY FAR the best carrier we've seen. (and we've almost seen them all!) Ella seems to approve as well! Two baby thumbs up!
The Swiss Zewi Blanket. It's basically a fitted sheet that has a sown in vest for the baby to zip into. The baby can sit up, turn, but not get out. I know, it sounds weird, but it works like a charm. Ella loves it. (As picture shows) This blanket allowed us to skip the crib alltogether.(Don't think it's available for sale in the US)
The swiss Kaengurooh Baby JoJo is a lifesaver for parents with a 'colicky' baby. Ella needed to be bounced for hours on end. There's only so much bouncing on a yoga ball you can handle. My sister, living in Switzerland, heard about the BabyJojo and was told that the minute one uses this 'baby hammock' baby tend to stop screaming and actually slep peacefully. If only we would have gotten our hands on it earlier. It works wonders as it mimmicks the up and down movement the baby experiences in the belly. (The last time I checked they are not allowed to deliver to the US!)