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Entries in baby registry (2)


Baby Products: Fantasy v. Reality


I recently found some old imported Google Notebooks. When I was pregnant with Griffin, I used one of these notebooks to organize the baby products I wanted for my baby registry.

Wait, that's a lie.

Let's be honest, I used one of these notebooks to organize my desired baby products before I was pregnant with Griffin. That's right. I had everything picked out for my registry before I was even pregnant. Yes, it is very, very sad. Yes, my obsession with baby products knows no end. Yes, I'm the person you go to if you are setting up your own registry. 

However, did I actually use any of these products? Heck, no!

I've written before about disappointing products, but as I read through the list I didn't just see products that I never used. I saw a woman with some serious fantasies about babydom and what it takes to survive it.

First of all, this document is 58 pages long. FIFTY-EIGHT PAGES LONG. Now, in my defense, there is a lot of space and a lot of photos but still. Do I have an equally long document filled with advice on how to raise this child? Nope. I guess I was just going to wing it.

I have seven different books and Web sites on recommended baby products. When, I ask, was I going to read said books? I sure I didn't have any time after writing (and revising and revising) my baby products manifesto. That's for sure. The best part? THIS is actually on the list! Oh, the irony!

Next up, I have four baby journals and several other keepsake ornaments/portraits/etc. Turns out, I just use Facebook. I'm assuming Zuckerberg sends you an edited full-color photo book when your kid turns 18. Right?

However, the section with the biggest disparity between what I expected and what actually happened is absolutely diaper bags. I have NINE different diaper bags picked out, which means I probably looked at nintey. They are all cute and highly functional and I even ended up with one of them...that I never, ever carry.

Because the best part of me being obsessed with baby products? I rarely, if ever, have a baby product on me. I would say 9 times out of 10 I take my kids somewhere I walk in with my kids, myself, and my purse. No diaper bag, much less diapers or some fancy shopping cart cover. Let me show you what replaced my diaper bag.

Noticed how I showed you a nice manufacturer picture and not my actual car. That's because my car is one giant (very dirty) diaper bag filled with toys and books and sippy cups. (Maybe a diaper, too, if we didn't steal the car diapers when we ran out inside...you know you've done it!) I guess I just figure if we really need something that bad we'll just go out to the car and get it. Not to mention, a majority of the time I'm hanging out with my MUCH better prepared mommy friends who will always lend me a wet wipe. 

Mainly, when I scroll through the pages and pages of baby products, I just see a scared version of myself. I thought that having a mastery of baby products meant I had a mastery of motherhood and nothing could be further from the truth. Seeing long lists of products promising to make life with a baby easier made me feel more at ease. Sure, it was a fantasy but nothing really would have prepared me for the reality...and my diaper bag IS really cute. 

P.S. Here's the link if you want to peruse my manifesto for your own personal enjoyment. There actually is some great stuff on there. ;)

~ Sarah Stewart Holland 


Salt & Nectar's Top 5 Disappointing Baby Products

Following up on our recommendations for great products for the new mom, I thought I would share my list of products I was super excited about and ended up not using that much. I suppose a couple of them could become essentials with Amos, but I seriously doubt it.

Just trust me. No matter how inventive and useful they seem in the store—take my advice and skip these products.

Image via supercoolbaby.com

1. Snuggle Nest Oh, Snuggle Nest I had such high hopes for you. In fact, my entire strategy for the first few nights of Griffin's life revolved around this product. We would just swaddle him up, plunk him between us in the Snuggle Nest, and enjoy hours of uninterrupted sleep. Clearly this would work—look how happy the people in the picture are!


Sorry. Needless to say, Griffin wasn't that interested in the Snuggle Nest and slept much better snuggled up next to me. Even if he had loved the thing, Nicholas and I were both miserable because you really need a California King in order to have room for two adults to sleep comfortably AND fit the Snuggle Nest. (Please notice the happy photo parents aren't actually sleeping.)

Now, in this product's defense, we ended up using it when he was a few months older and sleeping in his own crib. When he was still swaddled and wouldn't move that much, we'd put him to sleep in the Snuggle Nest whenever he was congested and the incline helped him sleep a great deal better.

2. Squirt Baby Food Dispensing Spoon This little product seemed like the smartest idea I'd ever seen when I first encountered it. You put the food in the spoon! Baby doesn't grab at the jars! Less cleanup! Except, there isn't really less cleanup. You still have to get the food in the jar. The spoon doesn't quite hold a full jar and I could never talk myself into pre-loading the spoon so I'd have it ready. Not to mention, I made a lot of Griffin's baby food from scratch and it was always a little too chunky for the tiny hole in the spoon. At the end of the day, a bowl and spoon worked just fine.

Image via babiesrus.com

3. Boppy People are pretty passionate about the Boppy, especially breastfeeding moms. So, I was excited to add this highly touted essential to my nursery. Only one problem. I NEVER used it. I used the My Brest Friend pillow for breastfeeding (my love for his product is a post in and of itself) and the Boppy basically never saw the light of day. I know some people use it to prop their baby up but I'm not sure that's really worth the $40 price tag.

Image via Amazon.

4. Adiri BPA Free Natural Nurser A bottle shaped like a boob! Genius! These bottles came out a few months before Griffin was born and I couldn't wait to get my hands on one. I ended up getting one free from a friend who said her son hated it. I figured that was just a fluke. They had to work!

Sadly, not so much. I found the bottle leaky, difficult to clean, and Griffin was not a fan—and this was not a picky baby when it came to food. He did much better with the plain old Medela bottles. Go figure.

Image via Amazon.

5. Newborn Gowns I remember one registry recommendation list suggesting you have at least seven of these gowns on hand when the baby came home. They were supposed to be easy to use—no waistband to irritate the umbilical cord or deal with in the middle of the night when changing diapers. It all seems so logical, except by the time Griffin fit in the gowns (I could never find smaller than 0-3 months) his umbilical cord was long gone and he kicked so much the gowns always ended up bunched around his waist.

Are there any baby products you found disappointing? Was one of my disappointments one of your favorites? Let us know!

- Sarah Stewart Holland