6 months + baby stuff update!

Avery is six months old today! (She can’t believe it either!)

6months

She had her 6-month well visit and another round of shots this morning, so today has been a little rough. It took a few tries but I was finally able to snap enough photos when she was in better spirits.

IMG_6064

These are the same jeans she wore for her 3-month shoot, but I don’t think they will fit for much longer! (My stepdad made the “Avery” onesie. He bought a 3-pack to make her “Apocalypse Survivor” onesie so this one was a by-product.)

IMG_6099

IMG_6091

IMG_6033

Behold, the power of Sophie! Look deep into my beady black eyes, Avery…

IMG_6103

Did you get enough? Ok. It’s also been awhile since we did the last product update post, so I figured we were due.

Last time we were at the tail end of the “4th trimester” so a lot of our baby stuff revolved around sleeping and comfort. As I was taking photos this time around, I realized that we hadn’t really acquired many new products or contraptions. The one thing I did finally buy – toy storage.

IMG_6139

Super cute, right? I saw a similar 3 Sprouts storage bin on Stefanie’s blog a while back and had to go for the squirrel (because they’re cute and creepy?). Avery’s favorite pastime (besides eating or sleeping) is to lay on the floor and play with toys/books/Bailey or anything within reach really. We had received a few toys as gifts and they sat neatly on one of the shelves in the wardrobe. And then Christmas came. All in all, everyone did a good job about not going crazy, but when you have 3 sets of grandparents, extended family and lots of aunts and uncles, it adds up. Fortunately, she got some really great toys so there wasn’t any, “oh…I’m sure this Disney Princess karaoke machine is age appropriate!”.

IMG_6133

Avery is a reluctant sitter but an avid wormer and lunger, so floor time is her jam. It’s hard to catch her in focus.

This baby has always been eager to use her legs, so we knew she would love a jumper. I’d heard mixed reviews about the kind that clamp to the door frame (from a health and safety standpoint) but seeing as how we don’t have any traditional doorways it was an easy solution. I started doing some research and came across this jumper from Canadian company Merry Muscles. It was more than we wanted to spend, but as soon as Kyle and I watched the YouTube videos on their website we were sold.

Adorable, yes?

This jumper has a couple of different installation options, but the easiest solution for us was to simply screw the included hook into our exposed joists in the living room. The height of the jumper is determined by which chain link it’s hung from. We’ve had this for a few months now and while it took her a few weeks to get the hang of it (and be tall enough to see over the front bib) she LOVES it. She will happily spend 30 minutes to an hour in it, bouncing…spinning…appreciating the architectural decisions that her parents made. The harness part has a series of snaps to grow as the baby does and everything seems incredible well made and durable. I have not had any safety concerns since we’ve owned it. Plus, it’s super easy to take down (I just stand on the couch and slip it off the hook).

IMG_6050

Here’s a rundown of the other must-haves or lifesavers that we continue to use on a daily basis.

Crib: Although this is an obvious daily use item, I wanted to give a quick update on our decision to go with an IKEA Gulliver. No regrets! Yes, I’m sure I would have loved the Oeuf (my second choice) but not enough to shell out an extra $900 or so. Avery isn’t into the gnawing or jumping phase yet, but so far the Gulliver has held up just fine. Here’s another thing, I used to think that the crib was important because it would be the focal point of the room. Well, it’s really not. Who knew?

Monitor: As mentioned last time, we received an Angelcare monitor that detects both sound and movement. Our house is small enough that we don’t really need the sound component, but the movement detector has been a luxury. Avery started rolling over to her tummy at about 3 months, so we stopped swaddling and relied on the monitor to ensure us that she was ok (an electronic pad goes under the mattress and an alarm goes off in no movement is detected for 20 seconds). Once or twice a week there’s a false alarm (when she’s wormed her way to the corner of her crib), but I don’t mind a few of those for the peace of mind it gives me. Now that she’s older we’ll probably stop using it soon, but I am thankful for all the shut-eye that was saved not having to go and check on her to ensure she was still breathing. :)

Now that I think about it, we still use and love almost everything that was profiled in that first roundup post. The only things we’ve retired are the swaddles and the bassinet. (It’s marketed as a chair too, but she doesn’t have much interest in lounging anymore.) I still carry her in the K’tan – it’s great because I can keep it in my purse or diaper bag (yeah, I got one of those too) and comes in handy at the grocery store or for going on a walk with a weaving golden retriever at my side. (It was indispensable for traveling last month!)

Next on the horizon is solids. I made pureed pears, apples and sweet potatoes last weekend. We started with pears and she loved them (so much that she dived toward the spoon rather than wait for me to bring it to her mouth!). Right now she sits in her Bumbo (another lifesaver, another item I didn’t know what the hell was before having a kid), but we need to upgrade. Originally I wanted the Stokke or OXO highchair (brown and wood!), but I just can’t justify the cost (around $250 or so) when I can get the well-loved IKEA one for $25 (which is also smaller and you can rinse it off in the shower!). Of course now I’m thinking of holding off on the high chair all together and instead I ordered this table chair (it was recommended on Lucie’s List and got great reviews on Amazon). Since the dining room table is my office these days, we’ve been eating at the island so it made sense to go this route with Avery. It will also allow her to be part of the action as I’m cooking, eating, etc. (And in true Zerbey fashion I ordered it in brown.)

So there we are, six months in! Do you guys have any must-haves or great tips? I’m guessing my next post like this will be all about baby-proofing our house. That’s going to be fun (prooooject!).

And for those of you that have made it to the end of this post and aren’t so much on the baby train, our next post is all about BIG, SEXY ARCHITECTURE. Watch out.

I wasn’t compensated for any of my reviews. Just trying to pass along good info from one design snobby parent to another.

Comments

39 Responses to “6 months + baby stuff update!”

  1. Stacia says:

    Cute pictures and I love that squirrel bin. Our kids loved their jumper too. Just wanted to put in a plug for the Stokke. Our 4.5 year old still loves and uses his ( and prevents him from having to kneel on an adult chair at dinner) and it is in fantastic condition. It’s why when we had our second, the only things we bought her were her own Stokke and a carseat. With the exception of the ikea chair (which is a great deal and design but doesn’t grow with he kid like a Stokke) all the others you’re lookin at are not the easiest to clean. We liked our clamp on chair for travel, but wiping it out daily got old fast and that’s when we bit the bullet for the good stuff. We fully expect our kids to be using their Stokke’s as desk chairs when they’re tenagers.

    • Amber says:

      Just want to second the trip trapp endorsement. Our son is two and a half and loves his chair. Our dining room chairs have open backs and are not very safe for him, but his chair brings him right up to the table height. He has been able to climb in and out of it for about a year, and we like that it promotes independence. Like Stacia, we are about to buy another for our second baby. We also started with the clip on high chair but found it very difficult to clean on a day to day basis.

  2. Isabelle Nuenninghoff says:

    Great to hear from you guys; was wondereing already what you were up to. Avery is growing more and more gorgeous. My compliments!
    Regarding the high chair, I am with Stacia. The Ikea one had safety troubles some time ago here in Europe, and gets bad reviews repeatedly in official consumer tests (don’t how to translate the organisation for that in Germany). You can use the Stokke much longer and it gets its real value in later years when classical highchairs like the Ikea ones don’t do the job anymore. Calculating the cost on a price vs. time of usage, I guess the Stokke even has the better ratio. As they don’t deteriorate much in quality, maybe get a good deal on craigslist? Looking forward to your next post, you sure made me curious? ;-))) All the best from snowy Zurich.

    • Lauren says:

      Ok, ok…you and Stacia are totally swaying me now! What to do, what to do…

      Hello Zurich! I don’t know how you do it, I just took a 15 minute walk in 40 degree weather and was miserable. :)

      • laura says:

        I agree, the stokke is totally worth it. I did not get one with my first, but many of my friends did, and their kids are still using them at five years of age. for my second baby, i got a stokke. So glad i did. she is 18 months old now, not really talking yet, but she can climb into the stokke, sit down, and let me know it’s snack time.
        You can get the anniversary edition on albee baby for $180, and they seem to resell for about $150, so it’s a pretty low net cost.

  3. Suzanne says:

    Holly has the 3 sprouts toy bin, except it’s a raccoon, and super creepy, but I love it!!

  4. Elizabeth says:

    The Keekaroo is a great alternative to the Stokke. We’ve had ours for 4 years and still love it. We bought it at 6 months, along with the infant insert, which worked great for the phase you’re in now.

    Chair: http://www.amazon.com/Keekaroo-Height-Right-Chair-Natural/dp/B0044R7I00
    Insert: http://www.amazon.com/Keekaroo-Comfort-Cushion-Set-Chocolate/dp/B001L1EJTA/ref=pd_bxgy_ba_text_y

    You’re entering the best part of the first year! Enjoy!!

  5. hjc says:

    Avery is A-very cute baby!

  6. amy h says:

    My girls loved bouncing, too. This jumper is so much nicer than what we had though. We had a Jumperoo, and it was SO noisy. And they couldn’t spin either. So good choice!

    We have a couple Stokkes that I found on Craigslist for about $50. I like the concept, but they cause problems for our kids. They have always had trouble sitting still at the table, so they fall out of the chairs a lot — more than with regular chairs. The foot panel seems to encourage standing at the table. Also, the legs stick out on the floor, so everyone is always tripping on them. I think we’re about ready to give up on them and just make the kids use the regular chairs. I know lots of people love them though.

    • Stacia says:

      How old are your kids? Wondering if when you bought the used Stokke’s (lucky duck, used they go for $150 by me) did they come with the harness straps? I’ve never had falling out or standing up problems, but I made my big kid use the strap around his waist until he was over the shananigans stage.

  7. ali thompson says:

    shut up that first pic is adorable. really like the squirrel bin too. super cute.

  8. Sara says:

    We just got the stokke for our 18 month olds. We were really happy with the Ikea chairs up until now, they were cheaper than the stokke baby set and we could easily take them when we went to friends. Plus they were easy to clean for the purée stage which I’ve heard from some can be harder wit the stokke.
    So that’s also another option

  9. Jenn says:

    Your Avery is just the sweetest little baby! Holy moly.
    I still remember my jolly jumper (yes, I realize it was almost several scores ago) that my mom and dad made for me, which was very similar to the one you’ve found! I got too big for it, but would stretch the spring as far into the living room as possible and they let myself spring forward into the kitchen where my mom was making dinner. Oh, the fun times.
    We had the table chair with our two, the only thing that can happen is the apron of the table is too wide for the arms to fit underneath. We had to take one of the legs off of the table, mount the chair through the gap, and then reattach the leg…but it worked, and the table was unscathed.
    Can’t wait to see your big architectural reveal!

    • Lauren says:

      Haha, love the description of the homemade jumper! Thanks for the tip on the table chair, we might run into the same issue if we use it with our dining table.

  10. Skye says:

    The Inglesina table chair was one of the best baby items that we purchased. We used it all the time at home and it’s easy enough to unscrew from the table, so that you can take it to restaurants. Never found a table that it didn’t fit. Also, cleaning it was surprisingly easy. It wipes down well enough, but looks as good as the day you opened it, when you put it in the washing machine. Oh, warning though: people will come up to you, and ask about and marvle over this chair.

  11. Mindy says:

    I didn’t know about the Stokk chair until my 2nd child. I really wish I had it for my first child instead getting 2 chairs, one for when he’s a infant and one for when he’s 2+ and can get on and off the chairs. The STOKK chairs are well worth the money considering it’s a chair you can practically use forever, like using it for a desk chair. My 6 yo still uses it when my 2yo is not sitting in it. You can often find gently used ones on cragslist for half or a third of the price of a new one. That’s where I got mine.

  12. Lilly says:

    She’s a cutie! We had the Merry Muscles too and it was the best. In our case our older molding were actually too large for the typical bouncers, but having loved those when I was a baby I was determined. I was so glad when I found that one, great in the summer too because we took it outside and slung it iver the beam on our porch and took it to my mom’s and wrapped it around a tree limb- awesome :)

    As for high chairs, I think they are important, but the Ikea one is really fine too. We got the crazy expensive and loaded with bells and whistles one from Bloom. It’s been worth it for us and we do use the features, but I think we’ll graduate our toddler to a craigslisted Trip Trap (since he can easily climb up himself) when we have a new baby. We also have the Ikea one at my mom’s though and it’s not as snug as the Bloom so he spins around, but it’s just as good as most high chairs. The only safety issue was with the straps and they corrected it (we hardly ever even use the straps in any high chair anyway). Decisions decisions! :)

    • Lauren says:

      Thanks Lilly, great idea to take the jumper outside! We don’t have a tree large enough to hang it from but maybe we can come up with something…

      (By the way, I’ve been following your blog for a while now…such beautiful photography (and kiddo!). Also, I really, really want to make that banana cake!)

  13. Maja says:

    Hi, Lauren,

    I’ve been following your blog for about 2 years now and this is the first time I just have to say something. The topic: Stokke Trip Trap :)

    I’m 30 and I still own and use mine! Unbelievable, I know … but I have my own baby pictures to prove it. It’s still in top shape even though it was used every.single.day. The wood is amazing. I switched the seat and footer to accommodate my adult size behind. I adore it and am definitely going to use it for my kid.

    I live in a small EU country where Stokke used to make them. They moved the production line to another country but the chairs remain the same quality.

    Buy it. You won’t regret it.

    Love,
    Maja from Ljubljana

    p.s.: your house and your ideas are amazing!

  14. jeannette says:

    http://www.amazon.com/Kidco-F710-Baby-Food-Mill/dp/B000E46IU8/ref=pd_sbs_ba_4

    low tech, washable, portable to restaurants where you can grind up food for baby on the spot.

  15. jeannette says:

    plus, forgot to say, her fuzzy little head in that headband is over the top. yum yum.

  16. Colleen says:

    Our daughter turns 6 months next week so we are in the same spot. We started solids a couple months ago and apples with rice cereal and sweet potatoes are her favorites. Excited to try all the other foods she can eat now that she’s 6 months old. We have the same clip on chair (in my signature orange) and we are super happy with it! She hasn’t made a mess of it at all yet. Glad to hear it cleans easily when we get to foods like spaghetti :)
    We were lucky enough to get the Tripp trapp as a shower gift from a group if friends. I got a lot of hand me downs in owe areas so we didn’t need as much at the beginning. I hope you can find a good deal on one!

  17. Kristyl says:

    So cute (baby) and so boring (blog) – it’s your blog, so of course, you must post what you’re excited about – love babies and really don’t want to read about baby stuff on a house-reno blog.

    Sorry….she is so adorable….

  18. FLT says:

    Honestly, unless someone plans on having tons of kids and handing stuff down, I think any expensive baby stuff is much more about the parent than the baby. That time passes so quickly that you get very little use out of things that cost $900 (which would be better put into a kid’s college fund). I guess I’m lazy, but I don’t want to bother with reselling things to recoup the cost when I have a toddler to deal with!

    Call me a pragmatist, but we could afford more and I was happy with my Ikea crib. And your baby is adorable!

  19. Heather says:

    What a cutie Avery is!! I always love reading your blog when I can, and I especially love it now that we are also new parents (we have an 8.5 month-old daughter). We’re going through a lot of the same things as you, both parenting- and home-wise, as my husband and I are also design-conscious to a fault! It’s hard to know where to draw the line as far as whether or not to go with something design-y for the kiddo. We’ve got a combination of relatively high-end and lower-end stuff for our Maeve. (Thank goodness for Ikea — I love that their stuff is both attractive AND affordable!) We’ve generally found that, like with the rest of our place, we’re getting by with an even combination of Ikea and second-hand items, with a few high-end items thrown in as well (we got the Stokke Tripp-Trapp as a gift from my sister, luckily, and I am smitten).

    One place where I’m very picky about her having high-quality, though, is with her toys. I only want her to have a handful of really well-made toys (i.e. not plastic, noisy, made in China, battery-operated, tied to movies or TV shows, etc.) that she loves and can use to play pretend when she is older. I had to lay down the law with our folks before Christmas — setting up a Pinterest board of quality toys I called “Maeve’s Wish List for Santa” worked surprisingly well! :)

  20. Jacob says:

    What an active kid you have there! She’s growing so fast! For having so much to do she still seems very active all the time.

  21. KMP Modern says:

    There really isn’t enough blogs that feature beautiful baby stuff that isn’t overly cutesy. I love the jumper! Too much fun. And I didn’t realize that was an Ikea crib. I was thinking how modern it looked. But we did splurge on the Svan highchair. Its gorgeous, and it’s been well loved for two kids. Our second child who is now 4 years old still uses it and jumps all over it. It really is sturdy and worth the money and the time it takes to put it together!

  22. jenna and zeke says:

    YO we need to get together! lets get something on the calendar. let us know what works!! xo J+Z

Leave A Comment