Favorite things: Months 13-16

It’s been a while since we posted a list of Suzianne’s favorite things. Here’s a grouping of her go-to books, foods and toys over the past few months:

Books. The good old fashioned board kind. Since she could sit up on her own, she’s had a thing for pulling every book off the shelf and wading in a pool of cardboard. These are her favorites. Note: if you buy these, you’ll be reading them over and over again. Unless you hide them under the ottoman like we do. So, don’t blame me–you’ve been warned.


But wait! Where is MY favorite book, Llama, Llama, Red Pajama? Yeah, so, she could not care less about that book. It breaks my heart, since reading that book to her while making her sit awkwardly in a Bumbo is basically the only reason I had a baby and of course my child hates both of those things. (geez)

Food. Unless she’s teething, this child will pack away the food. She’s especially fond of red foods, like watermelon, tomatoes, red bell peppers, strawberries and cherries.IMG_7897

Even as easy-going eater, she still goes through picky phases. For three days, the only thing she’d eat was this banana pouch and cheddar bunnies. Also, every now and then, she’ll refuse to eat cheese unless it is sliced in a certain way. Last week, she wouldn’t eat a green bean with strings hanging off of it. So, daddy picked off all the strings for her, naturally.

When my foodie turns fickle, I always giggle/cry and think about this hilarious/true/depressing Honest Toddler post. As a friend of mine commented on Facebook last week, it’s amazing how universal this behavior is. Continue reading

11 months!

This time last year, my momma was stuffing a king cake in her mouth and whining about her cankles!

This month, it became quite clear that I birthed a giant person. I’m not sure how I created this incredibly long and lean creature, but I’m feeling pretty accomplished.

Could wear my jeans right now.

I could wear my momma’s jeans right now.

She towers above other babies her age. In fact, I’m pretty sure she could ride a roller coaster today. I was 13 years old before I could do that.

This month, it also became clear that felt, paper and cardboard are more exciting than the 30,000 toys her daddy has purchased for her.

FELT: If you don’t own a set of felt fruit and root veggies, your child is missing out. Suzianne goes through spurts where she plays with this stuff for days on end.

Favorite toy ever. (Thanks Krissi! Sometimes we love you for that, sometimes we hate you)

Favorite toy ever: felt fruit in a basket.

Even when presented with a new, loud toy. Even on Christmas morning! This child prefers the basket o’ hand-crafted felt that our dear friend Krissi gave to her when she was a few months old. Thanks, Krissi! Sometimes we love you for this gift, sometimes we curse you. 

PAPER: Suzianne loves everything about books and could spend all day flipping through them, pulling them off shelves and nibbling at their corners. A good book currently is the best “soothing” toy we can offer her.


Flippin pages

Once an hour

IMG_0023She’s got a thing for these tabbed DK books, that my friend Nicole introduced us to. I highly recommend them all. Baby Bonus: they apparently make effective teething mechanisms.

CARDBOARD: when Team Newman receives an especially large box, we play with it like this:


It’s a box cave!

When Melissa-the-awesome-nanny gets hold of the same box, it turns into this:

Made by Melissa in like 22 minutes.

“Tiny’s Place”: Made by Melissa in like 22 minutes.

Yes, Dave’s nickname for Suzianne for the past six months or so has been “Tiny.” Not so sure how accurate that name is now, but it’s still cute.

And finally, this month, Suzianne began experimenting with kneeling, pulling herself up on furniture, and standing. You’ll find her like this a lot:

IMG_5711I have a feeling that by next month, she’ll be walking. We’ll see!

In the meantime, watch her grow! Take a scroll through the Month-by-Month archives.

Suzianne’s first food review.

Since Mommy is a slacker, it’s Daddy’s turn.

Suzianne started “eating” (eating is a relative term. Wearing, spitting, drooling could also be substituted here) stage 1 food recently and here are her votes:

Suzianne enjoys her carrots. Thoroughly. 

Peas: Meh. She’ll eat them but not that enthused.
Apples: OMG Yesyesyesyes. Please more now.
Pears: See Apples.
Sweet potatoes: Mostly positive. Don’t overdo it.
Bananas (or Nanners in the Newman household): She’ll eat them but doesn’t go crazy like Apples and Pears.
Green Beans: Green Beans are verboten for the near future. Remember the “beans, beans are good for your heart” song? Yes you do. Anyway, it’s real and it kept little Z up all night making noises from everywhere humans can make noises. And she was screaming. So yeah, this is a thumbs down.
Carrots: She likes these but she has to be nakey nakey to eat these or they stain whatever she’s wearing.
Bacon: Come on. I didn’t really feed her bacon…yet.

I’ve been mixing up the brands on these and don’t really see a difference in how much she likes one over another brand of the same food. I should pay more attention to that, though. I’ve been purchasing Gerber, Earth’s Best, O Organics (Safeway’s organic food), and Plum Organics. Also, we tried rice cereal:

Not interested.

Favorite Things: Month 3

It’s time for the third edition of Team Newman’s Favorite Things! Many of you are reporting that you, too, are finding success in ordering and using the products we are mentioning. The mobile and ugly pacifier seem to be your favorite of our favorites. We are thrilled these posts are helpful!

Suzianne’s Favorite

The Woombie: our friend Andrea suggested we try this right after I posted about the likelihood of Suzianne busting out Month Two’s favorite, the Miracle Blanket. And bust out she did–the night I published that post. Suzianne loved the Woombie during month three. Dave and I like it because it’s fool proof. And when I say “fool proof,” I mean you can’t do it wrong when you are too tired or slightly tipsy.

Margie and Dave’s Favorites:

Diaper Genie: you either love or hate this thing, apparently. We currently are loving it, though the lid does get a little out of sorts every now and then. We’ll see how long it holds up.

Dresses: if you know me, you know I’m fashion-challenged. I have no sense of style, or knack for what is trendy. Dave, on the other hand, has an eye for these things. And I love that if he is the one to get Suzianne up in the morning, he will always put her in a dress:

He’s always done this, even when Suzianne was fresh out of the oven and fancy clothes with buttons scared us to death:

Infant leg warmers: I think teeny tiny leg warmers are cutest things I’ve ever seen, though they are a bit too Flash Dance for Dave. They make diaper changes easy and keep the sun off your baby’s legs when you’re out and about. This is an old picture, but the only one I have of her in my favorite pair that Abby gave us:

Tune Band: since I’m sticking with my 5k training, I’ve got to have the perfect iPhone arm band. I believe I’ve found it in the Tune Band. Its design allows for it to fit securely around my nonexistent biceps, which is an important quality in an arm band. I’m still in love with my YurBuds, too.


Favorite things: Month 2

In month two, we started to find a tiny bit of a routine, thanks to a little more sleep and a few favorite products.

Suzianne’s Favorites

The Mobile: Geez o Pete, she’s obsessed with this thing. Our friends Albert and Angela get the award for Most Mesmerizing Gift That is Also Good For Brain Development. The mobile hangs over the changing table and Suzianne lights up like a little, Dave-type Christmas tree every time she sees it:

The Mat: Suzianne is also a fan of this play mat. I purchased it because she was crazy-alert for a then six-week-old, so I wanted her to have something fun to look at while I took a shower/ate breakfast/folded laundry, etc. She loves the mat. And it currently is the only thing that she tries to have a conversation with, when she’s not trying to force milk out of it:

Margie and Dave’s Favorites

The Miracle Blanket: we touted the Halo swaddle in month one, but in month two, The Miracle Blanket is the winner. Suzianne is freakishly strong, so she was busting up and out of the velcro. The Miracle Blanket pins her arms by her side; she now sleeps like a champ and has not (as of this posting) figured out how to escape it.

Epiphany: it’s not just for nighttime sleep. She’s a much better napper when swaddled, too.

Grass Drying Rack: breast pumps have many parts that need washing and drying after each session. I was setting the parts out on paper towels until Dave gave me this. It’s fun and enables the parts to dry out much faster.

Uppa Baby Stroller & Peg Perego Car Seat: yes, these items are pricey (I got a great deal on Zulily), but we love the way the stroller and car seat are so adaptable. The car seat snaps into the fold up stroller, car seat base (that stays in the car), and even Dave’s fancy jogging stroller. The stroller comes with a bassinet and an older child seat. So, one piece gives you three options, which is nice, since our apartment is only 990 square feet.

Warning: the car seat is insanely heavy, but I guess if it’s protecting your baby, it should be sturdy.

Our Favorite Things: Month 1

There’s so much baby stuff out there, it’s overwhelming. To help cut through the clutter, here are some must-haves for the first month, as approved by Team Newman:

Suzianne’s Favorites

Boobs: but when she can’t have a boob (because the boob is taking a nap, or at Chick-Fil-A), she prefers her milk from the Comotomo Natural Feel Baby Bottle. We think it is because it touches her nose, like a breast does.

Natursutten BPA-Free Natural Rubber Pacifier. We tried several pacifiers and she rejected all of them. But Amazon reviewers swear by this one, so I tried it. And it works! Again, we think it’s because it touches her nose. It’s insanely ugly. But it “pacifies” her, so whatevs.

Baths by Granny Sue Sue. For some reason, in the first few weeks, the thought of bathing my child scared the crap out of me. When I bathed her, she screamed like crazy; and this is a baby who (knock on wood) never screams. But a bath administered by her grandmother is like a day at the spa to this child. Find a person who would like to soothe your baby with a bath for the first few weeks and make let them do it; it will take a load of stress off of you until you gain some confidence.

Margie and Dave’s Favorites

Halo Sleepsack Swaddle. This thing is genius. Yes, you can use a normal swaddle/receiving blanket to swaddle your newborn. But about a week into life, she’ll suddenly become The Strongest Tiny Human On Earth. And I don’t care how tightly and expertly your husband wraps that child, she’s bustin’ out, beyatches. Rather than resort to duct tape, which many of my sleep-deprived friends have done, the Halo velcros her alarmingly strong arms to her side. It’s magic (and check out my nails):

Cradle n’ SwingMy co-workers purchased this for me and said it would be a God-send; they were right. You need something sturdy, swing-y and noisy to put your baby in so you can do things like pee, eat, and shower for the first time in five days. It’s a rather large contraption, but so worth it. Get one.

Video baby monitorFor the first few weeks, you’ll want to keep your newborn in your room at night so you can obsess over her breathing patterns and whatnot. But after you decide your own sleep is important, you’ll want to put the baby in her room at night. Last week, Suzianne started sleeping in her fancy nursery. Every now and then, it’s nice to ease my worried momma mind by taking a peek at her while listening to her odd goose-like sleep sounds. It’s even nicer to turn the volume down after I’ve had my fill of them.

Happiest Baby on the Block DVDI read the book, but the DVD shows you how to properly swaddle, swing and shush the baby. The techniques really work; I swear.

Bag-like pajamas/gowns. There’s just something so awesome about not having to remove pants or snap anything to change a diaper at 3 a.m. Plus, Suzianne looks adorable in these little things. When I first started receiving them as gifts, I thought the concept was weird. Now, they are my favorite thing to put her in. See! Look how cute:

Total Baby iPhone App: let’s you track your baby’s nursing, bottles, baths, poops and pees. Yes, your parents will make fun of you, but it’s 2012, ladies. This is how we do it.

If you’ve got first month favorites, please share them in the comments!