Another amazing baby show (the ABC Kids Expo) this year in Las Vegas, y’all. I love my job!!!
The show is full of brands of all kinds, from economy to luxury to “only celebrities can afford this.”
As I observe *most people in the world* pushing their newborn babies in a Graco SnugRide/SnugRider, I am reminded of my mission, which is not to bring you the most expensive, trendiest stuff (as fun as that might be), but to bring you the best values.
Value is what I’m after, people (can I get an Amen!?). And if you can make value look great, even better!
One exhibitor that knocked my socks off this year was “GB” (short for “Goodbaby”). GB is a new company that has been manufacturing goods for others for years and just started their own brand. When I say they have amassed some amazing tribal knowledge, I am not kidding. With their recent acquisition of Evenflo and Cybex, these guys are on fire.
Without further ado, here are the faves —
Best in Show for 2015
Skip Hop Uplift Baby Bouncer ~ $150(ish)
Coming in May 2016
It’s a bouncer that can go on the floor — orrr… can be cranked up to eye-level — or any level in-between. Want to pull baby up to the table to hang out during dinner? Great. Want to keep her at floor level while you take a bath? No problemo. It’s cordless but it comes with a music/vibration feature and a cute toy to boot.
We love the versatility.
4moms High Chair ~ $299
Coming in early 2016
The high-tech baby gear company, 4moms, has entered the category of high chairs.
When designing this product, they took into consideration the two big complaints parents have with feeding: the trays are hard to use (while holding a baby, etc.) and hard to clean.
They decided to use magnetization to fix both of these problems. The one-handed magnetized tray pops into place very easily (one-handed while holding a baby in your arms – yes!).
Use it with the special 4moms bowls and plates, whose magnets help keep them on the tray where they belong [the chair comes with one large bowl and lid — you can purchase additional bowls and plates separately].
Add to that the sleek design and the 4moms highchair is an easy winner.
UPPAbaby G-LINK ~ $499+
Coming in December 2015
Ain’t nuthin but a G-thang, baby.
If you love the G-LUXE, you’ll love the new double umbrella G-LINK. It ain’t cheap, but for those in the market for a serious, high-quality daily-use double umbrella, the UPPABaby G-LINK will not disappoint.
At 24 lbs., it’s one of the easiest double strollers to schlep up and down the stairs [like. we. do.]. Oh yes, don’t I remember the days of hosting a nanny share in our 2nd story walk-up in the City — so cumbersome.
The width is a narrow 29.5″, so it’s sure to fit through any doorway. The weight limit is 55 lbs. per seat, which is very generous, and each seat operates and reclines independently.
On each amazingly huge canopy, there’s a peekaboo window and a pocket behind each seat for your essentials. There’s even a cup holder that will actually stay on.
The stroller stands by itself after being folded — for all of those times you are squeezed into those tiny, urban cafes and restaurants that we love so much. Furthermore, the compact umbrella fold will allow it to fit into the smallest of trunks.
It’s perfect for airline travel. Even though my oldest is five, there is nothing worse than landing late after a cross-country flight and forcing your already-asleep child to march a mile down to baggage claim, then stand there for an eternity waiting for luggage, etc. No thank you. Bring this double umbrella and let them sleep!
If you’re in the market for a high-quality, lightweight, full-featured, double umbrella… you’re welcome 😉 P.S. Like Hondas, they have great resale value.
*Available in three color options: silver, black and green. The black frame will be $530.
Ergo took the best features from the most popular nursing pillows to design one with the best-of-all-worlds. The Ergo Natural Curve has a unique contour that helps position baby in a tummy-to-tummy position for lasting support while nursing. Because it sits taller than other pillows, it prevents back pain caused from slouching after marathon nursing sessions.
The Ergo pillow is also contoured to tilt your baby’s head and body toward you and lift baby’s head above tummy to help aid in digestion. It’s made of firm foam and has an interior lining to protect against spills, plus it’s easy to machine wash. *Winner of a 2015 JPMA Award.
A great video by our friend Jessica at the Leaky Boob ^^.
Graco Modes 3 Lite Click Connect Stroller ~ $230 ($330 with car seat)
Available now, only at Babies R Us.
Graco also had a great showing at this year’s show.
Knowing what moms want, they took their very popular Graco Modes (regular, 4-wheeled version) — lopped off a wheel and shaved off several pounds to give us a lightweight (19 lb.), sporty, 3-wheeled, affordable reversible stroller. For comparison sake, it’s not quite as light as the City Mini (17 lbs.), but the City Mini can only face forward.
It also happens to be the only reversible stroller with a simple one-hand fold (the one-second Fast Action™ fold). It comes with a wonderful parent tray and a huge storage basket.
With the ability to use it just as a frame stroller (for your car seat only), this could be the only stroller you’ll ever need (well, maybe an umbrella would be nice for later on).
Buy it with the SnugRide® Click Connect™ 35 infant car seat and you’re good to go.
Again, Graco delivers terrific value with their travel systems and their strollers continue to improve every year.
*Accepts all Graco Click Connect car seats.
GB Lyfe ~ $379(ish)
Coming in March 2016
Another fantastic value for a modular (rear-facing) stroller/travel system: the GB Lyfe. For approximately $379, you get a fabulous travel system, including the Asana Infant Car Seat.
This stroller comes with everything you need, including a bassinet that converts into a regular stroller seat. That’s right people, just say no to bassinets sitting in our garages collecting dust — this is one piece (see video).
Plus, usually you have to pay $100-$200 for a bassinet — and it’s really nice to have for months 0-6, not gonna lie.
Car seat, bassinet, modular stroller (one that can front- or rear-face) — check, check, check!
GB Pockit ~ $229
Coming in Spring 2016
Again, GB, ya’ll. Knocking my socks off.
It’s 9 lbs. and works from 6 months – 55 lbs.
Just watch the video. City dwellers, your life has forever been changed 🙂 You’re welcome 😉
Graco Dream Suite ~ $149
Coming in December 2015
Everyone loves the convenience of a bedside bassinet for those s l e e p l e s s newborn months. With this bad boy, you push a button, flip it over like a pancake and — boom! Portable changing table.
Yes, after your babe has outgrown it, keep using it as a changing table (changing poopy diapers on your bed is just…. I can’t).
Again, for $149 — a great value!
7 A.M. Enfant NIDO ~ $69
The 7 A.M. Enfant “Nido” goes up to 18 months. Designed in conjunction with the Car Seat Lady, the unique design eliminates layers between the car seat and baby’s back while allowing full access to the five-point harness. Safe, cute, comfy and warm — check, check, check.
Baby Pibu Skincare ~ $ Various
There are a handful of ailments that nearly every infant experiences in his/her first year of life: cradle cap, diaper rash, dry skin – oh, and let’s not forget about diaper thrush from h-e-double toothpicks. And don’t even get me started on the eczema.
My fellow Atlanta homegirl dermatologist Dr. Amy Kim developed these products specifically for baby. The starter kit comes with everything you need including cue cards about when and how to use them.
All of the ingredients have been scrutinized by a panel of doctors and recognized by the National Eczema Association and the Skin Cancer Foundation. Their products are made in the USA in an FDA regulated, organic-certified facility. Ingredients are naturally-derived and FREE of parabens, phthalates, sulfates, formaldehyde-releasers, SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate), peanuts, dairy, soy, fragrance and dyes.
Check them out here. *Psst — makes a great gift for a new mom.
Tiny Beans ~ $ Free
Many parents are leery of putting their kids on social media due to privacy concerns and allllll of the creepers out there.
And then there’s the issue of making baby books — something many of us intend to do, but never get around to [ahem, sorry Alice]. Yes, we have ALL THESE HUNDREDS of digital pics and vids — and we pray we don’t lose our hard drives or cell phones.
Then I met Sara Jane, the Founder of Tiny Beans. We ate, we drank, I learned….
Tiny Beans is a mobile app that allows you to capture special moments and details of early days and beyond. Whether it is your baby’s first smile, first steps or the first time she says ‘daddy’ or ‘mommy,’ you easily record those precious memories and share them privately with your family and friends (yes, celebrities love this thing!).
Remember all those funny things your kid said? You don’t, do you, because you never wrote them down, ha!
The product is a free iOS and Android mobile app that can be accessed on tablets and desktop too. The paid version lets users upload multiple photos at once and videos longer than 30 seconds. Paid users can also create cute slideshows and photo collections and back-up all their moments easily.
Petunia Picklebottom ~ $ Various
Petunia Picklebottom bags are known for their gorgeous designs and easy-to-clean canvas material. Their diaper bags achieve the ultimate goal: to not look like a diaper bag.
Also, their dude bags (Sons of Trade) are amazing and don’t-look-like-diaper-bags.
A great showing this year for Petunia Picklebottom. I want one!
ezpz Happy Mat ~ $25
If your child eats, you should get a Happy Mat.
It’s a placemat and plate in one that suctions to the table: a true game changer for parents. The mat has three compartments for all of the food groups that they won’t eat (kidding!) (sort of).
The Happy Mat is made of 100% silicone, BPA & PVC free, and contains no phthalates. This mat is very durable, super easy to clean (dishwasher safe) and easy to store and travel with.
Owlet Baby Monitor ~ $249
While I have really conflicted feelings about SIDS-type monitors, I’ll admit — if you’re going to get one, make sure it isn’t false alarming all-the-damn-time.
Owlet has changed the game because they use hospital technology (pulse oximetry – that little red light they clip on your finger when you go to the hospital) to monitor breathing. Owlet alerts parents if their child has stopped breathing or if their heart rate drops too low or spikes high.
It’s worn in a sock while your baby sleeps and reports information wirelessly to the base station or to your Apple device. This product has a hefty price tag, but for worried parents or those who have lost a child before, I’m sure it’s well worth the peace of mind.
Thank you Las Vegas and ABC Kids for hosting another fabulous show — see you next year!