Secondhand Cribs – Yay or Nay?

Rebecca's, and now Franci's, crib

Rebecca’s, and now Franci’s, crib

Back in 2011, the sale of second hand cribs was banned. While you’re still allowed to give away a used crib, the question is still out on whether or not it is safe to use a second-hand crib.  In the interest of frugality, reusing and family heirlooms, we put Frances in a used crib.

This is not a new topic here on The Green Baby Guide.  Joy wrote about giving their used drop-side crib away but making sure to include a crib immobilizer kit.

Rebecca posted about her second-hand crib and said she felt safe using it, despite the fact that it is from the 1970s, because it meets all the safety standards.
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Product Review: Travel Highchair

It’s usual to find a restaurant these days that doesn’t have a high chair, but there are other uses for a travel high chair.  Perhaps you are visiting relatives that don’t have one, or you have friends for dinner that have a little one.  Rather than be stuck with a baby on your lap while you’re trying to enjoy a nice meal and good company, stick that kid in a travel high chair!

Brica

Brica

There are a couple of good options out there, depending on your needs. A great one for the price is the BRICA Fold N’ Go Travel Booster Seat. It folds up flat, weighs 1.8 lbs and will hold a child that weighs up to 40 lbs. We took this one on our latest trip and it was worth every penny. We stayed in a suite with a kitchen, so Franci had lots of meals and snacks strapped in her portable chair.
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Product Review: Stacking Cups

Stacking Cups

Stacking Cups

As expected or a 10-month old, Frances favorite Christmas present was the tissue and ribbons that came wrapped around the toys. She spent the majority of the morning tearing the tissue into tiny pieces and, when we turned our backs for the briefest moment, sticking them in her mouth. Now that the tissue and ribbon have been stashed away and only the gifts are left, she’s turned her attention to an actual toy: Fisher-Price Brilliant Basics Stack & Roll Cups.

Franci loves the way they sound when she hits them together, and she likes tracing the ridges and bumps with her fingers. If I nest them and put them in front of her, she likes to sort through them. Although she’s not able to stack them herself yet, she likes to knock down the stack I make for her, usually before I can build it all the way up.
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Product Review: Bouncy Seat

Lounging

Lounging

Even 9 months in, Frances spends the first 15 minutes after eating in a reclined position. Although she spits up less than she used to, it’s still a threat after each meal. As a result, nothing has gotten quite as much use in our household as Franci’s bouncy seat. She has spent hours sitting in it, on the back porch in the shade, in front of the fireplace, next to me while I type up blog posts.

There are a lot of choices out there for bouncy seats and, to be honest, we hardly ever turned on the music or vibration. Bouncy seats are pretty easy to come by used or borrowed. Still, we’ve loved our Fisher-Price Little SnugaMonkey. It’s soft, easy to wash, gender neutral and the colors don’t make the living room look like a daycare. From the beginning, Frances has loved staring at the dangling monkeys overhead and, more recently, grabbing for them.
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Caring for Baby Teeth

Check out my pearly whites!

Check out my pearly whites!

So far I’ve heard varying advice on when to take your baby for his first dental check up, ranging from when the first tooth appears to when he turns two.  Frances has five teeth now, and it just occurred to me that we might need to start thinking about her dental health.

Taking her to the dentist now seems drastic, but it’s probably time to think about brushing. A quick Amazon search for Infant Toothbrush returns so many different types of teeth-cleaning devices, I don’t know where to begin. Do we start with a finger toothbrush? Or a silicone toothbrush? Or should we start right away with a toothbrush with bristles, since that’s what she’ll use eventually?
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Product Review: Footed Pants

Footed pants keep ankles warm in the Jump-up!

Footed pants keep ankles warm in the Jump-up!

Now that the weather is colder, Frances can no longer go around barefooted all the time.  I have a hate-hate relationship with baby socks, which either fall off or are too tight, so I’ve been on a quest to find footed pants for Frances. I mean, sometimes it’s just time to get out of pajamas and put on some real clothes.

After finding a pair at Goodwill, on my first try, I thought they’d be a lot easier to come by.  As long as your baby isn’t too tall, what’s not to like?  Well, it turns out they are not as prolific as I would have imagined.  I haven’t been able to find footed pants anywhere locally.  The thing about buying footed pants online is that they are expensive.   I finally broke down and bought a set of fleece pants with a sweatshirt, but that was a month ago.  Now the same set sells for 40% more!
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Product Review: Difrax Pacifiers

classis 0-6 monthsDifrax has two categories of pacifiers, Classic and Orthodontic. Each type comes in different sizes depending on the age of your baby.

Frances tried both kinds of Difrax pacifiers, with mixed results. She had never tried an orthodontic pacifier before, and wasn’t about to start now. After sterilizing the set, I took them to my breastfeeding group to see what the other babies thought. It turned out that there weren’t any infants there that had ever taken an orthodontic pacifier, so it wasn’t much of a surprise that they didn’t take the Difrax one either.

Next up were the Classic shape. To be honest, Frances is more of a thumb sucker, and really isn’t taking any pacifiers. But she did suck on the Classic for a moment longer than she would the Ortho. Once again I sterilized the set and took it to my group to get some other opinions.
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Product Review: Mesh Feeder

Now that Frances is in full-on teething mode, she’s been using her Munchkin Fresh Food Feeders every day. I slip in a combination of frozen banana, mango and peach and she obsessively sucks at it until her face is cold and red and her fingers are frozen themselves. If it’s close to nap time, I add a cube of frozen chamomile tea to the mix to encourage sleep.

I’m very grateful that mesh feeders exist, but I have a few complaints about the Munchkin variety. For one, they can be hard to open. I had to use pliers once to get the darn thing open. My biggest grievance is that they are incredibly difficult to clean. Banana in particular doesn’t even come out with scrubbing. Even a toothbrush isn’t that great a cleaning tool, and sometimes I have to scrape it inside out with my fingernail. Where the mesh meets the plastic is an especially tricky spot. And you better clean it immediately after use or you’ll be tempted to just throw it in the trash!
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Soothing a Teething Baby

We’ve finally entered The Teething Zone. I’ve heard plenty of stories about this stage in infant development, but I guess it’s not something you can fully grasp until you’ve witnessed it first hand.

For months Frances has been drooling and rubbing her index finger obsessively over her lower gums. When someone pointed it out I’d shrug and say, “I guess she’s teething”. Ha! In the past week she’s gone from a quiet, happy baby who contentedly plays by herself for hours, to one who can’t be left alone for more than five minutes.

One thing I didn’t anticipate was the scream that accompanies the fussing. Movie scripts would write this as, “blood curdling”. It’s the kind of scream that sends you running towards her, only to find Frances grinning widely at the look of concern on your face.
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Amber teething necklace winner

And the winner is…Chris DeHart!

Thanks to everyone for participating in our latest giveaway! And a big thanks to Amberbeata for providing the amber teething necklace. Please make sure to check out all the different amber teething necklaces on their website. If you’re shopping for a unique gift or something for yourself, check out all the beautiful jewelry on the site as well.