HannahSwancott

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I’ve really not achieved much in lockdown so far. I’m just over here literally trying to get through each day without gaining 45 stone in biscuits & keeping my child alive & healthy.

So, it’s about time I do something useful. I’ve popped together a little guide of things we’ve found really useful with Arla since she was born. If it can help just one person, that’s a big enough isolation achievement for me!

Now, I’m no professional – These are just things we have found really useful & have massively helped us so far.

I’ve split it out into categories to make it a little clearer, as it’s quite a long list. (soz)

S L E E P

Ok let’s start with sleep, the saviour of everything!

☐ From 0-4 months Arla slept with us in her SnuzPod bedside crib. The side comes down which is what I wanted, for her to be as close to me as possible. It’s so good for night feeding too, I would just roll over and feed her without having to get up!

☐ We kept her Moses basket downstairs for when she was napping in the early days. Little Green Sheep has such lovely baby things!

☐ From 4 months Arla has slept in her Mokee Cot. They have some really cool colours, but we were super boring & had white. I love her room so much though!

We discovered noise machines far too late! (Who knew they existed before babies?!) We tried Ewan the sheep that everyone raves about, but he only plays music for 20 minutes which just isn’t long enough, I was literally awake all night pressing the button in fear she would wake up if the noise stopped!

☐ We have this one, it’s £14.99 from Amazon. It plays continuously – The best!

OK let’s talk Baby Monitors. We have two (because I’m a psycho)

☐ We have the Angel Care with movement monitor – It sets off an alarm if she stops breathing. It just gives me some peace of mind shes OK!

Then we have the Lollipop Baby camera. It runs from wifi which is amazing. Quinn watches her from work on his phone, it’s so cute!

I think I’ll leave that in her room forever, just to spy on her and see what she’s up to, even when she’s 18 😂

☐ Arla literally does a full 360 in her cot in the night, so sleeping bags have been a lifesaver. We’ve used a mixture of the SnuzPouch & Little Green Sheep’s sleeping bags since she was born.

☐ Mokee also do a Travel Cot.

It’s so spacious, it can double up as a playpen too, but it folds down small to easily transport it!

T R A V E L

I seem to be a pushchair hoarder, oops! We have 3 different ones. (All for different purposes though!)

So we have a Cosatto WOW XL, Bugaboo Ant & Mlle Venture.

☐ The Cosatto WOW XL is honestly amazing, that’s our everyday pushchair! It’s so sturdy. Arlas super comfy in it too. It’s easy to collapse & put together. The wheels are huge, it can go anywhere! The only downside is that it’s quite big, it’s a squish in my tiny boot, but it fits! It’s great from birth and you can switch the car seat in & out easily.

☐ The Bugaboo Ant – I can’t praise this enough for traveling! It’s amazing. It folds down super small and Arla loves being in it – She can see everything! Probably not so great on rough/bumpy terrain as it’s so lightweight.

☐ The Mlle Venture. It’s a great all-rounder! It’s lightweight, sturdy, folds down quickly & it’s small. I had this one to keep with our parents, we’ve used it from about 8/9 months – It’s perfect!

C A R S E A T S

Car seats are complicated huh? Joie make it so simple!

We have two car seats, one in each of our cars. It just helps make our lives so much easier having the two.

We have the Joie i-Spin 360 & the Joie Everystage FX.

They are both suitable from birth, it saves having to keep finding & buying new car seats, these will both last years!

They are both super stylish. I love them & Arla is so comfy in them. There’s a little toy pouch on the side which I especially love! (It’s the small things!) 

Joie Everystage FX is suitable from birth right up until 12 years.

Joie i-Spin 360 is suitable from birth – 4 years. 

☐ We love a good walk, the Osprey Poco has been AMAZING! We’ve used it most days in Isolation, she prefers being up high and of course loves pulling her dads hair!

It will last ages too, result!

F E E D I N G

I’ve mainly breastfed Arla since birth. I would always recommend giving your baby a bottle alongside breast just to get her used to it from the start! I wish we would have done that when Arla was born. She refused a bottle for 5/6 months. When she finally drank from it, I could have cried with happiness 😂 It’s so nice to get just one little break. I tried just about every bottle brand with her, the only one she’ll drink from (still now!) is MAM.

MAM Easy Start Self Sterilising Anti-Colic Bottle Pack of 2 (2 x ...

Again, I’m here with my two breast pumps. (Gosh I’m so greedy but these things are SO useful, it’s all about finding what works best for you as everyone is different!)

☐ I love the Elvie pump. You can read a full post here.

I’ve recently tried the new Lansinoh pump too. It holds so much milk for such a compact pump, which is great for me because I seem to have a never ending supply!

I can barely feel that it’s pumping, yet it’s collecting so much milk, I’m really impressed!

ESS1

I love Lansinoh products in general too. If you’re breastfeeding, their nipple cream is an absolute life saver. I started using it before Arla was born & I never had any issues with cracked nipples or soreness etc, I think Lansinoh are the reason I’ve had such a lovely feeding experience, they’re the nipple saviours!

ESS

We’re getting to the real attractive bits here now…Breastpads!

☐ I couldn’t leave the house without them for 6 months. They’re really soft, easy to pop in & out of your bra and to clean.

They stop any embarrassing leaks! 🤭 These are Close Parent. They do reusable nappies which we used when Arla was born too!

T E E T H I N G 

We’ve used a few things to help Arla with her teeth.

☐ First up, Ashtons & Parons Teething powder seemed to really help her when she was under 6 momths.

Ashton and Parson teething powder and gel image on day and night image

☐ For over 6 months, we went to the hard stuff! Baby Bonjela. It just helped when her teeth were really cutting through.

Bonjela Soothing Teething Gel 15ml For Baby Teething 6 Months +

Arthur the Avocado has been a massive help!

He seemed to be the one Arla would always go for. He is easy to hold and has a little ridge to really help soothe her gums. They’re designed by a mum based in Sussex – She is amazing!

Arthur the Avocado Teether

B A T H

We have loved baby Aurelia Skin Care since Arla was born. She had cradle cap as a baby & their products were the only thing to help.

She gets really dry legs too (random ha ha) so we love using their skincare.

☐ We have the Sleep Time Top to Toe Wash & Cream & Comfort & Calm Rescue Cream

P L A Y 

I’ll keep this short & sweet, but generally newborn babies love lights, sounds & anything sensory based.

From birth, Arla would react to bells, flashing lights or basically anything that made a sound, I’ve made a little list of some of our favourites that she loved as a small baby. They’re often quite hard to buy for.

☐ Bells & Musical Instruments from Panda & Pip

☐ Someone bought Arla a Lamaze Dragon when she was born. If she was crying, we’d make the dragon flap his wings and she would stop – He’s magical!

☐ Peekaboo Singing Elephant – Oh my gosh, the best thing ever! She had it for Christmas, she dances around, flaps her arms and shakes in excitement as soon as she hears it!

Definitely a winner, I’d probably say from birth, we had it from 6 months old.