The next installment of Lexi Awards brought to you courtesy of Alexis and me.
I realize it is a very long period of time and much happens in a world of an infant in 6 months.
None of these are must-haves, of course. There is nothing that is a must have for an infant besides a boob and a care taker , however these are all wonderful and make life easier or fun for both mom and baby.
This post has been sitting in my drafts for almost a year now, so I thought I’d finally get it out. I know many of my readers have young babies, so hopefully this will be of use to them. Since the post was written almost a year ago, some things have changed as Lexi grew but these items were the MVPs for us during the 3-9 months stage.
We received the mobile at 6 months when it was almost past the age for mobiles, yet it was an instant hit just like suspected. You can see a review here, it’s great because it has little animals whose bellies light up with soft muted lights and a million different lullabies to play. For a baby who has a constant need to be stimulated, yet has trouble relaxing enough to go to sleep, this is a perfect functional mobile (as opposed to one you use for room decor).
This was a GREAT find. So great that I had received multiple emails asking about it from readers and then multiple emails thanking me for introducing them to such an awesome mat. It’s also a joy to see the mat all over my Instagram friends’ photos 🙂 Someone asked me to describe what was so great about it. It’s really hard to do. It’s just a perfect mat for young babies. It’s huge, it’s colorful, it has a few toys and a squeaky pad, it’s padded really well, easily portable and babies just love it.
Lexi has not taken to a lovey in the common sense of the word, but nonetheless she has really enjoyed playing with her Apple Park loveys. They are organic and in the shape of animals with a head, a tail and paws. I bought her 3 of them back when I thought she’d want a lovey and her favorite is the bear. Now that she’s almost 1.5 years, she is actually hugging them more than playing with them.
This one is hard. She had so many favorites and they changed so fast. She loved all the Btoys (review here), with the Fish N Splish being her favorite in the 3-6 months age range, and Meowsic being her favorite at 6-9 months and it actually continued being a toy that she plays with. At that age, she adored her Begin again bath toys so much that we had to bring them out of the bathroom and use.
If you’re in UK, I was sent a link to coupons for half price on selected toys. US readers can always search for coupons for specific toys and stores. There’s always something out there that can help save money.
Alexis LOVES BOOKS, so it is very difficult to name just one that she liked during that time, because her favorites are changing as she is growing and we’re buying new books. Here are her biggest loves from 3 months up to 9 months(in order): Mr brown can moo, Cat in the Hat comes back, ABC, all Dr Suess & other board books, Ocean/Farm babies, Baby Listens (it’s a really amazing book)
It’s a tie between Finn & Emma Organic gym and Tiny Love Nature Pals Gym. I am a huge fan of both companies, our first gym,Tiny Princess, was by Tiny Love. Finn & Emma gym is awesome, because it’s so portable, non-toxic, clean looking and the toys have served us so well (we still used them on strollers at that age). Tiny Love, being the brighter one, is of course is Lexi’s favorite. Just like her Princess gym, she love the Nature Pals one and the toys that come with it. We switched to Nature Pals though, rather than continuing to play with Princess because of a few improvements in the design, though the mat itself IS smaller.
As I wrote in the Baby Beach Essential post, it took me quite a long time to find a swimwear company that doesn’t use chemical UPF protection. Tuga is it, hence the favorite part. (OMG Lexi is so chubby here!)
EVENFLO JAM SESSION! WOW!
When I did the review of the exersaucer months ago, I couldn’t have known that she’d still be using it and, more importantly LOVING IT even more well past a year! Being more mobile and strong gives her the perfect freedom to twist however she wants and she now REALLY gets the whole music playing ( before it was just a bunch of button pressing). You should see her concentrated face as she flips the pages and twists over to the drum, pressed that, then pulls on a guitar. Man! And being in the 99th percentile for height, her feet are still not flat on the floor on the highest setting. A definite winner!
One of my favorite green companies, Green Toys, has a sand play set that is biodegradable, so if it’s “lost in the sea”, it won’t junk up the oceans. Plus it’s non-toxic and super cute looking with its pastel colors. We love it.
Loved loved loved this tent for Lexi’s first year of life. It’s really hard to keep an infant out of the sun in Florida especially with beaches on the agenda. This tent was the only way we could venture out to the beaches without Lexi getting a sun/heat stroke. I would highly recommend it to anyone. I can’t find this particular tent anywhere, but this one is comparable price wise and size wise: Infant Tent
I love how eco friendly and unisex some of their clothes are whithout being boring an drab. I am not trying to teach Lexi gender equality, or keep her from being a girl. I am a girly girl and a tomboy (depending on my mood) myself, but I just don’t care to only dress her in pink only. If I like an outfit, I’ll get it REGARDLESS of what color it is. PO.P do a great job keeping the colors and styles from being too girly or too boyish. And I adore their prints and classic styles.
Being a big Boon fan, I usually buy their products before exploring other options. Their suction plates are awesome and should be a staple of any BLW household. I bought a bunch of different Boon plates to try out and they are all great. And the no PVC, no BPA, no Pthalates is a welcome bonus. Recently I wanted to find a cup/sippy that Lexi would like. This straw cup is the best invention hands down for this age range ( it occasionally leaks, though, so it’s no good for diaper bags or travel per se ). You don’t need to tilt it to drink out of it. If you need something leak prove, this other sippy cup works really well for us as well. And finally, just a few months ago I stumbled onto the most beautiful toddler set I thought could exist by a Danish company TODDLER.
BOON FLAIR! I freaking love this chair! And so does Lexi, though what does she know. She DOES NOT like the 5 point harness, but I hear that’s common. Otherwise, this chair is really the best chair we could have gotten. I am a HUGE fan. Takes 2 seconds to clean, wheels all over the place, is very comfortable and looks YUMMY! For more info you can read the review here.
Our car seat story was far from a happy one (read it here). So Maxi Cosi Pria saved us from miserable car trips with a screaming baby. I can imagine that getting ANY convertible car seat would have made things better with Alexis, but there are a few things that I loved about Maxi Cosi that made it a must for me. For a baby that is older than 6 months, another great convertible seat is Clek’s Foonf.
At that age it was my favorite for a grab’n’go LIGHTWEIGHT stroller. It’s an affordable stroller with any feature you can possibly need. They had just came out with it in the US and were making a splash. If you’re on the market for a stroller in the $200 price range and aren’t willing to sacrifice some of the features like in most lightweight strollers, check it out. The true full coverage canopy is unheard of in any other stroller, it will hold a full diaper bag without tipping backwards (while empty), UPF 80+ protection, big storage and a seat certified by Health Backs Association. Buy here!
This one is tough, because a different carrier is good for different situations, but I guess our favorite carrier of the moment is Boba Air. My husband still adores Nordic, I have really started to enjoy Boba 3G for the back carry and there is K’Tan for every day home use.
BEST TRAVEL ACCESSORY:
This is a true life saver when it came to co-sleeping and travelling. In fact, we still use it for travel at 18 months old. Hotel beds are way too high, and as soon as your baby becomes mobile, they become dangerous. Babyhome sides are super portable, come with a carry bag and easy to install. They lower with a press of a button and store out of the way when you don’t use them. I am about to move Lexi to a full sized bed in her bedroom and these are the sides we will be using to prevent falls. Read a full feature on BABYHOME products here (a video included).
Proper footwear is surprisingly important for your baby’s foot health, their developing walking skills and their comfort. Pediped designs incredibly comfortable shoes for early walkers that don’t restrict their step and have a great fit for chubby wide feet of most infants. We are huge fans here of their line for toddlers as well, with grippy surfaces and flexible sole. All materials are natural: leather and rubber.
BEST OUTDOOR ACCESSORY
A swing cover/shopping cart cover/high chair cover is a must in the early days of hands-to-mouth.
Originally we had the cover you see in the pictures below and it worked fine, but my biggest complaint was it was floppy and big. Since then I’ve been using a 2RedHens cover that folds into a neat pouch and we just keep in the car when we need it. Read about 2RedHens and what we love about it here.
BEST HAIR ACCESSORY
I loooove Hopscotch Boutique for its bows and clips. They are simple hair accessories in beautiful colors and with that little bit extra without going over the top. It’s my only destination for bow clips.
Modswad! All the way, no questions asked! It’s hands down THE BEST, COMFIEST, SOFTEST sleeper to date. We used Modswad’s swaddle which was literally something that saved my sanity (read about it here) and once Lexi no longer wanted to be swaddled, we switched to the sleeper and she wore it for as long as she was ok with her legs being a in sack.
BEST BATH TOY
The problem with most bath toys is that they are ALWAYS made of PVC (see dangers of PVC here). I had the hardest time finding one that is not made of PVC and looked fun.
Begin Again’s toys are completely safe and made of natural products like rubber (without the nitrosamines). The Bathtub Ball is designed to work as teethers for smaller babies and role playing toys for bigger kids.
SPECIAL OCCASION DRESS:
If you have a serious occasion ( a wedding, a baptism), there are few classier dressier outfit places than Baby, Beau and Belle. Their special occasion dresses are classic and made of very rich looking fabrics like silk. Boy’s sets are so handsome that they make me want to have a boy. Lexi wore her dress to our Princess Tea Party at Disney during her first visit and she was just the most beautiful little girl ever.
BEST FIRST BABY PROOFING ITEM
I’ve raved about these gates from the very beginning. This was one of those finds that took a long time, but once I saw them – I knew they were perfect!
Sturdy, well made, long, fit weird angles and turn into a play yard. I don’t know what else you can ask of a set of gates. We have other gates for the top of the stairs and bottom of the stairs, but if you have a large opening to cover or need a play yard, these are the best looking highest quality gates you will find. I promise.
Where to buy
I linked most of the items to places where they can be bought via Amazon or US sites. You can also get free delivery on all items over £50 for most of these if you’re in UK.*
THINGS THAT DIDN’T WORK OUT
BOON SQUIRT TOYS
As much as I love Boon, their squirt toys are lacking. The funny part is that I can’t call them a complete failure, because Lexi loves playing with them in the bathtub and chew on them. But as squirt toys they… well, don’t squirt. So if you need waterproof, non-toxic, non-PVC bath toys, these are fine, but for squirt toys, get something else.
If you hadn’t read the previous edition, click here for more items that have become a staple in our household. For more baby products we love, you can read this post about our obsessions.
*Sentences marked with an asterisk were sponsored. Some of these products were sent to me for a review, others were bought on our own. The opinions expressed in this post are only ours and have in no way been influenced by brands or whether the product was sent for free.