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Best in Show: 2015 ABC Kids Expo

Another amazing baby show (the ABC Kids Expo) this year in Las Vegas, y’all. I love my job!!!

UPPABABy-show

Photo by Heather Reed

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.

Anywho.

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.

uplift_bouncer

Photo by Heather Reed

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.

4moms_highchair

Photo by Heather Reed

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.

4MomsHighChair

 

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.

Uppa_BestOfABC

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!

UPPAbabyGLINK

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 Natural Curve Nursing Pillow ~ $70

ErgoNursingPillow2

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 ^^.

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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.

modes-rear

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.

gracomodes3main

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).

gracomodes3

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.

buy-now

 

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.

gb_BestOfABC

Photos by Heather Reed

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.

Nido

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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.

pibu_BestOfABC

Photo by Heather Reed

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.

baby pibu

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.

No bueno.

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!

tinybeans

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.

Check it out on iOS or Android — Enjoy!

 

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.

Petunia_BestOfABC

There were so many cute ones – it’s hard to pick a favorite, but I’m a sucker for paprika [Tailored Tote (left) and the Statement Satchel (right)].

Petunia Grey

Grey and gold — behave!!

Also, their dude bags (Sons of Trade) are amazing and don’t-look-like-diaper-bags.

sonsoftrade_BestOfABC

Photo by Heather Reed

A great showing this year for Petunia Picklebottom. I want one!

buy-now

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.

EZPZHappyMat

buy-now

 

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.
OwletWirelessOwlet 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.

OwletSock

buy-now

Thank you Las Vegas and ABC Kids for hosting another fabulous show — see you next year!

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This article has 50 comments

  1. No Dock-a-tot? I’m so curious about this new product. loved your baby registry guide and think I have really done a good job at keeping it simple and weeding out the unnecessary stuff. Appreciate your site.

  2. Would love to know your thoughts on the Maclaren Triumph vs the new UppaBaby G-Link. We are doing some major traveling in 2016 and they seem pretty similar.

    • I love the double Triumph, it’s a great double umbrella. What will be better on the UB: much bigger canopies, better wheels, standing fold, suitable from birth + (Triumph is 6 Months +). Otherwise I think the Triumph is a great runner up.

  3. Notabli is an app similar to Tiny Beans that I LOVE for keeping track of my daughter

  4. Hi! Love your website – thank you for all your research! I am having number two in April and will have a two year old and am looking for a double stroller. My hubby stays home and will have to walk the dog with both kids at least once a day- any suggestions for a backward facing infant seat and forward facing toddler stroller? Does that even make sense?? Thank u!!!!!

    • Hi Sara! Totally makes sense! Did you happen to read our double stroller guide? It lays out all of our favorites for both side-by-side and tandem, price points, umbrella, jogging, etc. Check it out! I’m sure you’ll find one that’s just right for you and your husband.

  5. so the G-Link over the Valco?? My second adopted baby (16-month old) is coming in Nov and I’m now confused!! haha

  6. Tinybeans is the best! My whole family loves it

  7. The dockatot is awesome and well worth the money because sleep is priceless! Wish it was around for my son! Thanks for an otherwise great list! I’m looking forward to the uppa baby!

  8. Tinybeans is the best app ever! I love it, grandparents love it, aunts and uncles love it, far away friends love it…. The best!

  9. Since you were oh so lucky to be able to attend the abc expo, did you happen to take a look at the austlen stroller? It looks amazing but I haven’t been able to see it first hand and was wondering how you liked it? And when they were thinking if releasing it and their price point?

    • Hi Lindsey! Apologies for the delayed response, but we have plans to check out the Austlen Entourage Stroller this year at the ABC kids show. We’ll have a show write-up on this stroller sometime in late October 🙂

  10. I purchased a dock a tot for my newborn and she loves it. I highly recommend it and absolutely worth the price!

  11. I’m due at the end of Feb and am really hoping some of these lovely products will show up in time! Loved this list and also your registry list really helped me as a first time mom create my registry! Thanks 🙂

  12. The 4mom highchair: anyone concerned the kids can just lean on it and pop it off?

  13. I have the GB Qbit lightweight stroller and love it! I was so hesitant to buy it since it had just come out and reviews were scarce. I think we will be seeing a lot of fantastic products from this brand. I’m so jealous the Lyfe wasn’t around when I was purchasing my full-size stroller because that bassinet to seat feature is amazing!

  14. Were there any new, latest and greatest breast pumps? I had the Medela PISA but was hoping for something new out there that was better.

    • Hi Katie! Sorry for the delayed response, but we didn’t get a chance to really look at breast pumps at the show. But we have plans to this year 🙂 Medela claims to have new products hitting the market by end of 2016 and we plan to meet with Ardo this year. Either way, check out all our breast pump recos here.

  15. We have the EZPZ happy mat and my wild 1.5 year old figures out how to pull it off the table and throw it on the floor with all the food in it every time!!!

  16. Hi Meg,
    Thanks for your reviews and opinions. I have a couple questions regarding the GB Lyfe.
    Firstly, how is the fold? Is it easy? Second, how much does the stroller weigh?
    Thanks,
    Stephanie

    • Hi Stephanie! Thank you for being a loyal Lucie’s List subscriber! All Meg saw was a prototype and I think they’re still working out these details, so Meg’s advice is to hold out and see what develops 😉

  17. I would be very interested to know your thoughts on the Newton Crib Mattress (http://www.newton.rest/products/newton-crib-mattress)?

  18. What about new tandem strollers? What is the must have?

  19. I’m surprised by all the hype over the Pockit stroller — how is it better/different than the Mountain Buggy Nano? We love our Nano, especially for air travel (it fits in the overhead compartment).

  20. I am surprised by all the hype over the Pockit stroller — what makes it different/better than the Mountain Buggy Nano? We love our Nano, especially for air travel since it fits in an overhead compartment. And it is currently $215 on amazon, so it is about the same price.

  21. Guys -I’m thinking about a dockatot too for this 2nd babe due in March. I just saw they offered a coupon code on their IG. Look at their posts and find the blogger. Good through Nov 10.

  22. What are your feelings on the City Mini vs. The Graco Modes 3 over all? Which would you go with?

    • Hi Jessica! They are pretty different in that the Modes is a modular stroller (e.g. reversible seat) and the City Mini has a stationary seat. Generally, Baby Jogger strollers are of higher quality than Graco, but the reversible seat is a pretty great option.

  23. What are your thoughts in the Chicco Bravo and how does it compare to the Graco Modes 3 Lite aside from the multiple seat directions.

    • Hi Monique! The Chicco Bravo is about 4 lbs heavier than the Graco Modes 3 Lite. So if you are highly considering the Bravo, know that it may not be the best option if you’re heaving it in and out of your trunk and/or up stairs in the city, etc. Other than that, the Bravo has great reviews! Best of luck 🙂

  24. I was wondering if you had reviewed the DreamGlider™ Gliding Swing + Sleeper yet? Most reviews are positive, but also mention they received the item for free so I’m still skeptical.

    Thank you!

    • Hi Serah! We haven’t formally reviewed the DreamGlider Swing and Sleeper but it looks pretty cool. I’d say, go ahead and get it, it has good reviews! Just know that it looks like it’s exclusively sold at Buy Buy Baby.

  25. Is the dock a tot something you could get instead of a bassinet or pack n play with the cuddle cove and just place in baby’s crib from day 1? Our baby will be in our room for the first 4-6 months until we move, and I was just wondering if it makes more sense to just set up a crib in our room with that in it rather than buy an additional piece?

    • Hi Jennifer! The DockATot looks great if you have the means…it’s pricey for what it is. We like the Pack ‘n Play too because it’s cheaper and can be used in a variety of ways – like for travel, guests with kids and at Grandma’s house.

  26. Hi – we are expecting our first baby and having a hard time choosing a stroller. I love the uppababy but it is way over our budget (since we are getting a jogger too). What were your thougts on the quality of the GB Lyfe? Gracco is not my favorite because of how cheap it can look and am afraid the GB life will be the same. Or do you have other recommendations for an everyday stroller around or slightly over that price?

  27. This is what we need – an insight to make evyorene think

  28. So the GB Lyfe is only currently available in charcoal and red, and when I emailed them, they said they have no plans for new colors…However, it looks like from your photos they may be planning at least a light grey sometime soon. Do you have any insight?

    Thanks!

  29. Any updates on the GB lyfe stroller? How do you like it compared to the UB vista?

  30. Now that the GB lyfe stroller is out do you have any thoughts on it?

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