Motorola Digital Video Baby Monitor with 3.5" Color Screen and Two Wireless Cameras - $299.99 Babies R Us
I have to give it to Nick as this was his find and purchase. He researched and researched baby monitors and settled on this one since it had all the features we were looking for (and more) and came with an additional camera. I wasn't willing to skimp on the monitor since I knew I wanted to Brandon to sleep in his room and crib early on. I wanted peace of mind knowing that I could see him without constantly going in the room to check on him.
I have to say, this monitor does it all. It has night vision which works well, it can zoom, pan around the ENTIRE room (literally), it has 2 way talk so you can actually talk to your baby though the monitor and it plays lullabies. We haven't even used all the features yet but this is something that definitely gets used every day.
The only negatives I have with this is that the cameras have to be plugged into the wall and the monitor doesn't have to longest battery life but we just tend to plug it in every night so no issues with it dying on us yet. I do see this being used well into Brandon's toddler years to keep an eye on him without having to constantly hover over him making sure he isn't getting into too much trouble.
This is a pricey system at $299 but we ended up getting it on sale and only paid about $200 and got free shipping through Babies R Us.
Nightstar Contour Changing Pad - $29.95 Amazon.com
The changing covers were a waste of time but this changing pad is not! I have realized that this is the only place that Brandon has been changed in our house since we brought him home from the hospital.
This is super easy to clean and fits on the dresser in his room with plenty of additional space for additional stuff to still be on it. I am sure there are nicer changing pads out there but this one has been used numerous times daily and seems like it will last for the long haul (or at least until Brandon is too big for it). It's 32 inches long so we should be good at least until Brandon starts running around everywhere.
Playtex Diaper Genie Elite - $34.39 Target
I got this at one of my baby shower's and swear to you that it is worth the purchase if you have to buy it yourself. This thing really works! Brandon's room never smells like soiled diapers and the fact that I don't have to touch anything makes it even better. I have read many reviews and for the people that don't like this then you must not be using it correctly becuase both Nick and I LOVE it. I like the fact that diapers have their own place to go and aren't mixed in with the rest of the trash in the house. The diapers literally go straight from here to the outside trash 2x a week (I just change this out when the trash runs). The bags have never ripped and are not expensive. If you have an infant in your house then I HIGHLY recommend getting this or some similar brand. You will thank me when you change that first smelly diaper and then throw it away in here to never smell it again!
Baby Einstein Activity Mat
I actually purchased this for $10 at a consignment sale. Brandon loves this thing. If he is being fussy, I can put him on this and turn the music/lights on and he starts smiling and laughing. We started tummy time on this when he was only a few weeks old and he now loves grabbing at all the toys that hang from it. I am not kidding when I say he can spend about 30 minutes on this before getting bored or fussy (which is a lifetime for a baby). This is perfect for when I am getting ready in the mornings for work. I can turn this on and take the baby monitor into my bathroom and get ready knowing that he is playing and having a good time.
Of all the toys/baby activity stuff we have, this has received the most use and for only $10 bucks, I can't complain.
Boppy with Slipcover - $29.99 Target
Oh Boppy, how we love you. This thing is by far the BEST baby product on the planet. Brandon loves this thing and it makes my life so much easier. He eats on it, sleeps on it, plays on it, does tummy time on it. It's also great for propping him up for pictures. This thing allows him to do it all. I love it, he loves it, Nick loves it, even Nick's parents bought one for their house for when Brandon is over there. If we are going to someone's house with Brandon, I take this with us. We are totally attached to it and I do not mind at all. If you don't have this and have a little one, please, run out and buy it today!!! Your life will be better for it; mine is.
We have 2 covers for ours so when one gets dirty I can just switch it out and we can keep using without having to wait for laundry day.
Munchkin Sprout Drying Rack - $9.99 Target
I wanted to mention this becuase we bottle feed and it is so nice to have somewhere to put the bottles instead of laying them along the counter to dry (which is what I did before buying this). This is a very inexpensive way to keep clutter at bay and have everything handy in one place. This will even work once we transition to sippy cups and solids.