Updated January 2017
A related item and something that many moms will say is their #1 must-have item is a baby swing.
We chose not to get a baby swing because we had a small apartment and they require a lot of real estate, but many (many, many) moms and dads are completely nuts over baby swings. Most swings not only swing back and forth (like a pendulum), but they also play sounds and have other visual goodies.
You can also use a swing like a bouncy seat to stash your baby away while you GSD (get stuff/sh*t done) around the house. **Warning: These can be VERY overstimulating, especially for newborns. Use them sparingly in the first two months!
Fisher-Price has the market cornered on swings, the most popular one being the Cradle ‘n Swing (above^^). Click here to see all Fisher-Price baby swings. This is a great item to buy used on Craigslist, etc.
** Note that baby swings are big and heavy and are not portable like a bouncer or Rock ‘n Play.
1. Graco Glider Elite Swing ~ $180 ($151 on sale)
Want a bouncer seat that also swings and takes up less space than a traditional swing? Sorry, counselor, I know I’m leading the witness [snort].
If the answer is yes, take a look at the Graco Glider Elite. The seat portion is a stand-alone bouncer than can pop off the swing and can be carried anywhere; hence, a really versatile 2-in-1 product. It has a soothing vibration setting that babies love. Can be plugged in or run on batteries.
Another popular combo item, but more of a space-hog is the Graco DuetSoothe Swing + Rocker ($169, on sale $148). If space is not at a premium, check it out.
2. 4moms mamaRoo ~ $219
This could have landed in the “bouncer” category, but I felt it was more of a swingy thing.
4moms also came out with the rockaRoo for a little less (~$159), which swings in a gentle, back and forth, gliding/rocking motion, creating more motion at the baby’s head. If you get one that actually works (there are many quality complaints!), it’s a nice little gizmo to have.
Give Yourself a Break
Sometimes you hear new moms complain that they don’t have enough time to get dressed in the morning or take a shower. My goodness, it doesn’t have to be this way! You must take care of yourself — this includes eating well, showering every day, and getting out of your PJs (okay, the first two weeks, you get a pass)…use these bouncers/swings to help you stay sane.
Essentially, you’ll need one of these “baby holders” on each floor/separate area of your house. For example, get a bouncer for upstairs and a Rock ‘n Play for downstairs, or a swing for the nursery and a bouncer for the kitchen. You definitely won’t want to be carrying equipment up and down the stairs each time you need to put your baby down. Trust me on this one!
You can take the bouncer into the bathroom with you so you can shower. Yes, it’s fine! Pull it into the kitchen so you can cook, eat, do the dishes, or fold some laundry. Put your Rock ‘n Play or Skip Hop Uplift next to the dinner table, so you can actually eat your food. You get the picture. 😉
Deal? Okay good.