onsdag 21. oktober 2015

Welcome to my baby gadget blog

In July 2010 I became a mother for the first time. Like many others in my situation, I feel a strong sense of responsibility for doing everything I can to support my son's physical and intellectual development - which in combination with a passion for clever, technology-based innovations led me to discover a whole new world of gadgets targeted at making life easier and more interesting for young babies and their caregivers! It is however easy to get lost in the jungle of stuff out there, and my ambition with this blog is to share my and my son's experiences and favourite gadgets to help and inspire others in the same situation. I hope you will enjoy the reading and please feel free to leave comments on my posts! :-)

mandag 21. januar 2013

Handy and flexible twin stroller

Product name: Babyjogger City Select (http://babyjogger.com/city_select_dtl.aspx)

What is it? A very clever and flexible twin stroller allowing parents to adjust both the number, position and direction of seats in several ways. Folds away to an almost flat 50x30 cm package which makes it easy to fit into a car or storage room
Why did it catch my attention? Having used a Phil&Teds for a week with a then 3 month old and her 2 year older brother, we bumped into a family with twins at Santa Barbara Zoo and saw how much better it would be if both kids actually were able to see out when walking
How old was my baby when I bought it? Our youngest was 3 months and her brother 2 years and 4 months
What value does it add for us?This is the best stroller I have ever owned! It is flexible and we both use it as a single stroller for the baby, a double stroller which both of them can sleep in (with both seats in either of the forward-facing or rear-facing position and leaned backwards) and occasionally as a single stroller for a tired 2,5 year old. We have also added the Glider Board, which is how our son most often prefers to travel when we are out walking
What does it replace? For us it replaced a Phil&Teds that would transport both kids safely, but that was much less flexible, more difficult to fold, and where the baby did not see very much when stored away in the lower seat. For twin parents this is a much slimmer (and easier to navigate) alternative to a traditional twin stroller. It also doubles as a highchair for our baby at the breakfast buffet in the hotel we are currently staying in
How did my baby respond to it? They have both responded very well
How much does it cost? Around $400 on Amazon + $56 for the Glider Board
Can I see any drawbacks? My son will soon grow out of the seats, but he would have grown out of most other strollers too. When keeping the heaviest kid in the frontmost seat the stroller can be heavy to navigate. The wheels are made for Californian weather, not for Nordic winter roads

torsdag 29. november 2012

Imagination + Magnets = Imaginets

Product name: Mindware Imaginets (www.mindware.com/p/Imaginets/44204)

What is it?A box with 50 magnetic blocks in various colours and a bunch of “challenges” in the form of images of things to build with the magnets. The inside of the box itself is made from whiteboard material, which can add to the fun of playing! It has won several awards, among them “Parenting for High Potential Recommended Award” and “Parents’ Choice Gold Award”
Why did it catch my attention?During a long stay in Silicon Valley with my two kids we went to the fantastic Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose and fell for this product when browsing the museum store for intellectually challenging toys for a 2,5 year old
How old was my baby when I bought it?My son was 2,5 and no longer a baby! The package says Imaginets is suitable from 3 years and up, but my son loves it and is able to build some of the easiest challenges (and many self-invented ones!) already
What value does it add for us?This is a great toy to keep a toddler busy on his own for a while, in the same way as crayons and paper, iPad games or Lego would do. The foldable box makes it very easy to bring along when travelling
What does it replace?Crayons and paper, iPad games, Lego and any other intellectually stimulating toys keeping a toddler and his/her imagination busy on their own
How did my baby respond to it?He absolutely loved it from the start! Has not let it go since we bought it yesterday
How much does it cost?Around $20 on Amazon.com
Can I see any drawbacks?Some of the pieces are very small and can cause hazards to potential younger siblings (like our 4 month old who puts everything in her mouth)

søndag 6. mai 2012

Educational iPad/Android app suite for toddlers

Product name: Baby Bus educational software suit (http://en.baby-bus.com/)
What is it?Baby bus is a suite of educational iPad/Android apps designed for children between the ages of 0-6 years. Most of the apps are very intuitive (developed by a 2,5 year old and his mother) and teaches your little one useful things like letters, shapes, names of fruits, vegetables and animals and numbers.
Why did it catch my attention?Anticipating a need to keep our then 11-month-old entertained during a 9 hour flight to California last summer, we were looking for apps that would work on his Android Pad, be intuitive enough for a boy of his age and captivating enough to keep him interested over time.
How old was my baby when I bought it?11 months old
What value does it add for us?It keeps him busy for longer than less interactive types of entertainment like movies while he learns something useful. It has triggered his interest in fruits and animals, and to some extent numbers. He actually (but unconsciously) also builds his “digital skills” while playing.
What does it replace?Books, movies, games, toys, walking up and down the aisle on a flight, train or bus…
How did my baby respond to it?He loved it from day 1. His absolute favorite so far is “baby learns fruits”, which at the basic level is a very simple but colorful game where the trick is to touch a twinkling fruit shape to make it move.
How much does it cost?It is actually free.
Can I see any drawbacks?Parents quickly get tired of the monotonous music and you might want to be careful not to let the Pad replace playing and human interaction too much.

onsdag 2. mars 2011

A bright shining friend to keep me company at night :-)

Product name: Pabobo Barbapapa Night Light
What is it?A night lamp shaped as a Barbapapa character that illuminates with a pleasant bright light that shines for up to 11 hours after it is removed from the little docking station
Why did it catch my attention?The interior architecht who helps us finding furniture and accessories for our new house mentioned to me that her daughter loves this light and we bought it on her advise
How old was my baby when I bought it?A little bit more than 7 months, but this product is relevant from the moment a baby starts enjoying to look at bright faces and/or when they get a little bit older and start getting afraid of the dark
What value does it add for us?It looks nice and I think it will be an appreciated friend for my son when he gets older if he (as many children) becomes scared of the dark
What does it replace?Other night lights and other nursery decorations
How did my baby respond to it?As with many things he seems to like he wanted to chew it. He is not yet old enough to be scared of the dark so I don’t have evidence to evaluate the comforting effect on him
How much does it cost?£35 on Amazon UK
Can I see any drawbacks?Not for the moment. It is both nice to look at, seems to work well and the docking station is both discrete and practical

Turn your bath tub into a baby bath with a BabyDam

Product name: BabyDam (http://www.babydam.com/)
What is it?This is a good idea that I want to promote although it did not work well for us in our current bath tub. It is a dam made of a blue rubber material that in theory ‘blocks off’ part of your large ordinary bath tub to become a baby bath – saving water and making it quicker to fill up the bath for your little one
Why did it catch my attention?Having spent time with an impatient baby waiting for the bath to get ready and having struggled to make a baby bath work well in a relatively small bath room, I saw the BabyDam at a competing baby gadget blog and thought it might be the answer to our challenge
How old was my baby when I bought it?A little bit more than 7 months, but this product is relevant from when you start bathing your little one for real (we started at approximately 2 weeks, but I would have waited until he was stable enough to sit on a bath support rather than a ‘floating cushion’ that we used until he was ~4 kilos heavy before I tried the BabyDam in our tub)
What value does it add for us?If it worked it would have saved water and waiting time
What does it replace?Using the whole big bath tub or one of the various baby baths on the market
How did my baby respond to it?He thinks it is a toy and turns around to try to chew it!
How much does it cost?£27,50 with free shipping in mainland UK
Can I see any drawbacks?For us it did not work as the water leaked through the dam – but I am hoping that it was because of our bath tub and not the BabyDam itself. The intense blue colour turned out to be distracting for my son, who turned around and got more difficult to clean than before we got the BabyDam

mandag 28. februar 2011

Smart storage cubes for solid foods

What is it?Plastic food pots with a clever design that differentiates them from other similar products by (a) being ‘clickable’ so that you can store several of them tightly together and save space in the freezer and (b) having a soft base that helps you ‘push’ a frozen cube of food out of the pot more easily
Why did it catch my attention?I bought them on impulse at my local JoJoMamanBebe store when shopping around for splash mats and long-sleeved bibs a couple of months into weaning
How old was my baby when I bought it?He was 7 months, but this product is relevant from the moment you start weaning baby on to home-made solid foods
What value does it add for us?They make it smoother to ‘pop out’ frozen food, e.g lowering the barrier for me to actually cook real food for my son instead of buying ready-made jars and pouches
What does it replace?Other baby food pots or ice cube trays. Before finding these we used Happy Mummy Baby Cubes, which also are good but lack the two differentiating features described above
How did my baby respond to it?He is completely unaware of its existence, but I am guessing he would treat them as a teething toy if he saw them
How much does it cost?£6 for a six-pack at JoJoMamanBebe
Can I see any drawbacks?No, we have been very happy with both the functionality and the quality of this product