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Toddler Gear for Grandparents

Around 6 months, babies start to learn all kinds of exciting new skills, like rolling over, sitting up, eating solids (and pooping solids!), babbling, and even crawling or scooting around the house. And once they start walking, it’s a whole different ball game. This is why we put together this guide to toddler gear for grandparents.

Grandparents Guide

You may want some age-appropriate gear to support your grandbaby’s new skills (and protect them from themselves), such as feeding utensils, babyproofing items, an umbrella stroller (or other lightweight stroller), and eventually some potty training gear (they grow up so fast, don’t they?). See also: Babyproofing for Grandparents

Grandparent’s Guide Stage 2: Older Infants and Toddlers

Let’s begin 😃

High Chairs for Grandparents

Because feeding babies in anything other than a high chair becomes a bit of a Jackson Pollock experience, grandparents should definitely consider getting their own high chair to make meal-time easier (read: cleaner).

Grandparents Guide

In the high chair world, there are 3 types of chairs: chairs that sit on top of an existing chair (low cost, low impact), those that clamp onto a table or bar top, and those that stand alone.

Here are our favorite high chairs for grandparents, in order of price (from lowest to highest):

Space-Saving High Chairs

Fisher-Price Healthy Care Booster Seat ~ $34 – Economy Pick

Grandparents Guide

This seat is a simple, space-saving high chair (for kids 6 months to 50 lbs) that attaches with straps to any size dining chair. Once baby doesn’t need the tray anymore, you can use it as a booster for your toddler/preschooler right at the dining table. It’s easy to clean and doesn’t take up a lot of space. Best of all, it’s small and easy to store away.

Grandparents Guide
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Chicco FastLock Hook On Chair ~ $59

Most “hook on” chairs require a lot of screwing and manual adjusting (while crouched under a table… not fun). Not this one. This hook-on chair from Chicco clamps right on to tables and has rubberized feet to enhance the grip and protect the table from scratches.

Chicco clamp on highchair for grandparents

It also has a 3-point harness, and a removable seat for washing (this is key!). It can hold kiddos up to 37 lbs.

Important note: your table or bartop can be no thicker than 1.5 inches (yes, you should measure). If yours is thicker, keep reading…

Chicco grandparent high chair folded

Inglesina Fast Table Chair ~ $79

While this hook-on chair isn’t as convenient as the Chicco mentioned above, it’s the one for people who have a table or bar top up to 3.5” thick. This seat also holds kids up to 37 lbs, has a removable seat for washing, and easily folds up into a little bag storage bag.

To attach this chair, you twist the knobs beneath the arms to secure it to the table (much like a giant C-clamp), which takes a lot longer than the easy pull tab on the Chicco seat (above). Check out the video review here.

Grandparents Guide

Stand-Alone High Chairs

Ikea ANTILOP ~ $19 – Economy Pick

Grandparents Guide

Although it seems like any high chair that costs 20 bucks must be less than desirable, the Ikea ANTILOP is actually AWESOME. This high chair meets ALL of our requirements for grandparents: it’s cheap, cleans up super easily (there is no upholstery on this chair, which is amazing), and comes apart for storage simply by popping off the legs.

We used this chair for both of our kids, and I have no complaints— it’s easy to clean, doesn’t take up much space, and is super lightweight for moving between rooms. Learn more about the ANTILOP here.

Grandparents Guide
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Joovy Nook ~ $119

This is one of our favorite high chairs for grandparents. First of all, we love this chair for its unique swing-open tray. That’s right, you don’t have to fumble with holding the tray and the baby all at once. Genius, I tell you.

Grandparents Guide

This nifty (and dishwasher-safe) tray also adjusts front-to-back, which minimizes the crevasse (between your grandkid and the tray) that SO much of their food inevitably falls into.

This high chair comes assembled right out of the box (no work required—yay!), is easy to clean, and has a very compact fold (so you can just slide it out of the way when the grandkids go home). In our opinion, its compactness makes this one of the best high chairs for grandparents on the market, and for a decent price. Check out our full review of the Joovy Nook here.

Grandparents Guide

Booster Seats

Around the age of 2, many toddlers become adverse to sitting in a “baby chair,” but still require a boost so they aren’t resting their chins in their mac ‘n cheese.

Here are our favorite booster seats for grandparents of toddlers and preschoolers:

A Large Book — Free

As long as 1) it’s big enough for their tushies, 2) it doesn’t slip around, and 3) you don’t mind if it gets destroyed, a large book or textbook can work quite well as a booster seat in a pinch. This is what my parents do, and my son hasn’t complained yet!

Grandparents Guide

Prince Lionheart Squish Booster Seat ~ $27

We picked this seat because it’s lightweight and doesn’t take up much room. The Squish Booster Seat has safety written all over it with a slip-resistant, stable base and straps to securely attach to your dining chair.

Eiury Booster Cushion ~ $26

Another wonderfully simple option is the Eiury Booster Cushion, a 4-inch foam cushion that’s very easy to clean by wiping down with a sponge – or in the washing machine. It’s simple, easy and can easily be tucked away for storage.

Feeding Supplies for Grandparents

Once your grandbabies start eating solid foods, it can be extremely helpful to have a few feeding supplies on hand for when they visit. Namely: utensils, bowls, mats, bibs and “snack catchers.”


Nuby Spoons and Forks ~ $6/4-pack (2 spoons & 2 forks)

Nuby utensils are made of soft plastic for soft baby gums, and feature non-slip handles. You can find similar sets from Gerber Graduates and Munchkin.

Grandparents Guide

OXO Tot Training Fork and Spoon Set ~ $19 for 2 sets

These stainless steel utensils feature softened edges for kids who are just learning how to use them. They have thick, non-slip handles. There are plenty of other options out there too, including Gerber Graduates (spoons and forks or set with knife).

Grandparents Guide

Bowls and Plates

Bumkins Suction Silicone Bowls ~ $17

These bowls have a suction cup on the bottom that really works! They’re a great way to keep the majority of your grandkid’s meal off the floor (ha—good luck!).

EZPZ Mini Mat ~ $22

This cute placemat is made of silicone and suctions to the table to contain mess. It’s smaller, so it’s great for taking to restaurants, and it will fit on almost any size high chair tray (like the smaller one that stays at the grandparents’ house).


Bumkins Bibs ~ $14/for 3

Bumkins bibs come in adorable designs and can be easily washed or wiped clean— even in the laundry. They have little pockets that catch fallen food really well, and they fold up tiny for travel and easy storage in your kitchen.

They come in different sizes: starter (3 to 9 mos.), super (6-24 mos.) and sleeved (6-24 mos.).

Grandparents Guide

Snack Cups

Munchkin Snack Catcher ~ $5/for 2

These are great for snack-time—especially when you take your grandkid out of the house. Their lids stop food from spilling all over the floor. Ingenious!

*If you prefer to avoid plastics, they also make a stainless steel version.

Grandparents Guide


If you’re a local grandparent who has your grandchild over a lot, you may want to get a baby tub and some bathtime gear; after all, you’re going to need to get your grandbaby clean after those inevitable spit-ups, blow-outs, and food messes.

Grandparents Guide

Best Bathtime Gear for Grandparents…

Munchkin White Hot Ducky Inflatable Tub ~ $11

“Rubber ducky, you’re the one… you make bathtime lots of fun!”

Grandparents Guide

When both of my kids outgrew their infant tubs, but were still too small for (and frightened of) the regular tub, this duck flew in and saved the day. It was the best $12 I ever spent! They LOVED sitting in it, quacking, and splashing around in the water. Best of all, this duck can be used inside your regular tub or even on the floor (just keep some towels nearby!). When you’re done, deflate it and stuff it in a closet: score!

Puj Grippy Bathtub or Shower Treads ~ $14/6-pack

These 6” wide grippy treads are a nice alternative to placing a full slip-proof mat on the bottom of your tub. They stick to the bottom of the tub and you can clean right over them. They can be removed without damaging your bathtub, although you’ll only be able to do this once, as they can’t be reused after removal.

Grandparents Guide

Skip Hop Moby Non-Slip Mat ~ $14

Perfect for grandma’s house, this non-slip bath mat is small and easily stores/dries by hooking the tail over your shower head.

Luvable Friends Animal Hooded Towels ~ $13

You can use regular towels to dry your grandbaby after a bath, of course, but once you see them in one of these adorable hooded animal towels, you’ll never want to! Also, let’s face it… regular adult towels take a lot more space in the wash and energy to wash/dry.

Grandparents Guide

There you have it—our top picks for bathtime gear for grandparents. Now grab some baby shampoo, bath toys, washcloths, and maybe one of these ingenious hair rinsers, and you’ll be all set!

Compact Strollers for Grandparents

After 6 months, babies can generally go into any stroller without a car seat or bassinet, so you can get any stroller you darn well please.

Grandparents Guide

For grandparents who don’t need all-terrain capabilities, we highly recommend a compact, lightweight stroller. See also: Top 10 Favorite Single Strollers and Top 10 Double Strollers

There are umbrella strollers that you’re probably familiar with (they fold up like a large golf umbrella) and there are general purpose strollers that are compact, like the City Mini. See also: Best Urban Strollers

All of these are lightweight and easy to lift in and out of the car; the prices, however, can vary greatly.

Grandparents Guide
Umbrella Stroller

Umbrella strollers are great for strolling around places like the zoo, the aquarium, or any paved walking paths—just keep in mind that their tiny wheels are not going to do so well on rougher terrain.

Umbrella Strollers

Summer Infant 3D Mini ~ $59, 11 lbs

Grandparents Guide

For an amazing price, the new 11 lb Summer Infant 3D Mini umbrella stroller delivers some excellent bang for your buck. It’s a bare-bones, economy umbrella stroller, but it actually has features!!

It comes with two cup holders in a storage console that can also store your phone and keys. The seat reclines for nappers (somewhat), plus it has a flip-out canopy visor to protect your grandkid from the sun (it’s not the largest out there, but much better than most at this price).

See my video here:

This stroller is for the 6 months and up crowd. It’s got a super compact fold, so it won’t take up much room in your car or garage. This is one of the best strollers for grandparents who want something lightweight, compact, and very reasonably priced.

If you’re looking to go a step up in terms of build quality, Summer Infant also makes the 3D Lite ($99), a 13 lb umbrella stroller with a carry strap, larger storage basket, cup holder, and anti-shock front wheels that do quite well on pavement, dirt, and cobblestones (but not on gravel or rougher terrain). The 3D Lite’s seat reclines and it has a sun canopy— though it doesn’t provide the best coverage. If sun protection is a priority for you, keep on readin’!

See also: Complete List of Recommended Umbrella Strollers

If you’re looking for a stroller that’s a little more substantial (but still lightweight and easy to handle), check out Best Strollers for the City – or, if you’re looking for something more rugged and sturdy for rolling over any terrain, check out Best All-Terrain/Jogging Strollers.

A really great compromise for a lighter weight, all-terrain stroller is the City Mini GT2. This is a grandparent favorite.

Grandparent’s Guide to Potty Training

Once your grandchild begins the process of potty training (usually around 2-3 years of age, give or take), you might want some items to make it easier for them to use the potties at your house. 

The most important items are a potty seat and a step-stool, though a few other items will certainly make life easier if you have the kids at your house more frequently.

Potty Seats

Because little tushies can fall right through a regular toilet seat… potty seats sit right on top of your regular toilet seat. They take up less room than a potty chair in your house, though some younger children may find them a bit intimidating if they’re just starting out with potty training.

Grandparents Guide

Avoid the really cheap Disney (and such) potty seats you can buy at the drugstore. They tend to slide around too much and can cause falls.

Summer Infant Potty Chair

We much prefer potty seats over potty chairs (shown above) for grandparents, because with potty chairs, you still have to bend over and clean up the… mess, which…. I don’t know about you, but I’d much prefer not to! See also: Potty Chair Guide

The following potty seats are great for kids who are already potty trained, or who seem ready to sit on the “big potty.”

BabyBjorn Toilet Trainer ~ $34

This toilet trainer has a knob you can adjust to get a tight fit on your regular toilet seat so it doesn’t slide around. It also has a splash guard and a handy hanging hook so you can hang it up when it’s not being used. It’s the little things that make a big difference!

Grandparents Guide

Step Stools

You definitely need a step stool at your house.

Your grandchildren need them to reach the faucet to wash their hands, brush their teeth… and do just about anything at the sink. Kids use them until about age 7 or so. Trust me, you don’t want to lift them up to the sink every time they need to wash their hands – gah.

Here are our favorite step stools:


This step stool is 5 1/8″ tall and has an anti-slip bottom and top for extra sturdiness. I love this one because it’s inexpensive (woohoo!), not super “kid” looking, and small enough to store away when your grandbabies go home. There’s also the BOLMEN (~ $8, also from Ikea), which is a bit taller and can hold a max weight of 330 lbs (!!) — meaning it’s suitable for kids and adults.

Grandparents Guide

Bumbo Step Stool ~ $14

This step stool, which is 6.5” tall, is very stable because of its anti-slip bottom and top. (I have one of these in every bathroom in my house, and they work exactly as they’re supposed to.)

Grandparents Guide

Aqueduck Faucet Extender ~ $9

This faucet extender helps kids wash their hands without needing Grandma or Grandpa to lift them up to reach the water. It’s totally worth buying – your back will thank you!

Grandparents Guide

That’s it, grandparents! Thanks for sticking with us! Now go enjoy those delicious grandbabies of yours!

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