Isla is at the age where she really enjoys reading books. For many months, I felt like I was sort of forcing them onto her, but now she’ll pick them up and ‘read’ them herself. She definitely has favorites, like Tickle, Tickle, Peter and Good Night, I Love You, and then I have my preferences too (i.e. all twenty books below). We’ve been gifted so many wonderful books, many of which I love reading but Isla isn’t quite into yet (mostly because her attention span isn’t that long!). I seriously love Eloise and Room on the Broom, and I can’t wait to read these to her when she’s a little older.
As for now, the following books are the ones we cycle through most often, but I love changing it up by grabbing a random book off her shelf too. I am dying to know (seriously, that’s why I made this post!) – what are your favorite baby books? I would love to add to our little library.
Our favorites include:
- Diary of a Wombat: I bought this book because we’re going to Australia in January, and I’m glad we did because it’s so cute. The story follows the life of a wombat and his new ‘pets’ (i.e. humans who move in next to him). It’s a fun read for both parents and kids.
- Peach Tree Farm: This was one of my favorite books growing up, and I still love it today. The story rhymes, which I adore. It includes known characters like Jack and Jill and Mary (whose lamb goes missing!). I highly recommend this one.
I am a very Type A prepared person, so you’d better believe I had my hospital bag packed and ready to go a month before my due date. I seriously laugh at what I packed now, as I had way too much stuff – for both me and Isla. If you’ve picked a good hospital, you’ll get most of your essential items while you’re there (diapers, wipes, sanitary napkins, etc.). Most hospitals offer tours during which they’ll explain what you really need to bring for you and the baby. I would say the most important thing to remember is the car seat, as they won’t let you go home without it!
Although I am by no means an expert mom already, I do know what I’ll be bringing to the hospital for baby #2 – just the essentials (i.e. not 6 different outfit options like last time!). My friend, Julie, raved that her large L.L.Bean Boat and Tote Bag is perfect for a baby’s hospital bag. L.L.Bean kindly sent me one to try, and I agree with Julie – I love it. It is really sturdy, has a top zipper, and fits everything you need to bring (even the Dr. Brown’s Gia Nursing Pillow!).
When it comes to baby’s clothing/accessories, Carter’s has the best selection of every single baby essential item, which includes swaddle blankets, mittens, hats, socks, sleeper gowns, long-sleeved onesies, footed pajamas and pacifier clips. Even if you’re ‘against’ pacifiers like my husband once was (he’s definitely changed his opinion now!), I recommend bringing a few MAM pacifiers just in case. Trust me: This is all you need. I’ve listed a few optional items below as well, but if you stick with the ‘necessities’ list, you’re golden.
- Monogrammed slippers or blankets – we love Seaside Stitchery!
- Personalized baby book for guests to sign (and to photograph!) – we love Emily Ley’s!
- Diapers, wipes, rash cream (or use those provided by the hospital!) – we love Honest Co.!
And the best part of all is that L.L.Bean, Carter’s, Dr. Brown’s and MAM have all partnered with Snapshots & My Thoughts to offer one lucky reader an entire baby hospital bag set, which includes every single ‘necessity’ item. The winner will get to choose between the boy or girl options (or gender neutral) and pick the color and monogram of their L.L.Bean Boat and Tote Bag. I’m so jealous! I would have loved this for Isla! The giveaway ends on Friday, April 24 at 11:59pm. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Earlier this fall, we discovered that Isla loved being in the pool. Sporting her Honest. Co pineapple swim diaper and Babyiators, she put on her best sassy pout and worked the water like a champ. Sasha and I had a great time playing with her, but kept getting splashed as she flailed around with her arms and legs, dying to explore the waters on her own.
Enter the otteroo. This baby floatation device goes around Isla’s neck and provides support to keep her afloat without being held. At first, she seemed a little confused (but not upset) by the otteroo (‘What is this contraption you’ve put around my neck?‘). However, after she started moving around in the water by her self, she was sold.
We did a family swim date recently at Life Time Fitness, and I’m not sure who enjoyed the otteroo more – Isla or me and Sasha. We loved playing with her in the water without having to hold her and make sure we kept her head above the water.
As I mentioned before in this previous ‘Isla Loves’ post, we love the Honest Co. Their diapers are absolutely adorable and getting them delivered to our doorstep is such a godsend. If you’re not using them already, I highly recommend that you sign up to get the premium diapers and wipes for less than $20 a week from Honest.com.
Not only do we use Honest Co. diapers and wipes, we also use the Shampoo and Body Wash. Sasha takes bath duties every night, and the two of them have a grand old time in her bathroom (lots and lots of giggles). Isla wriggles all over, and gets the suds in her eyes and is not bothered one bit. We love how soft it makes her hair and skin feel too – and the sweet vanilla-y smell is a plus.
The Shampoo and Body Wash only costs $9.95 for a 8.5 oz bottle, and it lasts for ages. I highly recommend you buy it, or… enter the giveaway below!
One of the things an experienced mom will tell you when it comes to bottle feeding a baby is that you need to have a number of different bottle brands for your little one to try, as the silicone nipples are different shapes and sizes and you don’t know to which your baby will take. We bought three brands, and Isla would only drink from her Dr. Brown’s bottles – specifically the pink Natural Flow ones. The internal vent system works to mimic a mother’s breast production (watch this video), and the only negative thing I have to say about these bottles would be that I couldn’t figure out how to assemble it the first time (total new-mom-brain!). We were also gifted the Dr. Brown’s bottle warmer at one of my showers and love it. It’s small, easy to store in a kitchen cabinet and quick to heat up a bottle for a hungry baby.
Dr. Brown’s kindly sent me a few other products to try, and I have to genuinely tell you… I’m a serious brand lover now. Isla absolutely loved the PreVent Contour Shield Pacifier. The contoured surface makes it easy for Isla to keep the paci in her mouth. I love all of the colors and designs that the pacifiers come in too.