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How to Get Things Done with a New Baby

Updated on November 3, 2015

Getting anything done beyond caring for your newborn can be surprisingly difficult

Having a new baby in the house whether it's your first or fourth is such a special time and yet always takes some adjusting. It would be wonderful if you could just snuggle and cuddle your baby all day. However there may come a time when you find yourself under mounds of dirty clothes, with dishes stacked to the ceiling and dust bunnies swinging like Tarzan across your living room. It is then that the realization hits that you have other things that need attending to beyond just baby. The only problem is baby might not see things your way... These tips will help you gets things done with your baby in a way that keeps baby entertained and happy.


A Baby Jumper Entertains Baby Safely

I'm in a unique position where I have the best and worst of both worlds. I'm a stay at home Mom who owns a business so in addition to taking care of the kids I also work from home. I'm glad to have the ability to be the one to raise my children but the amount I have to do in a given day is endless. Taking care of the kids, working on my business, paying the bills, cleaning, cooking, running errands, the list goes on and on. My marker for an absolutely successful day is a day that I manage to get a shower... I have two of the most lovable children who also happen to be two of the most high maintenance kids you can come by. So it's been especially hard for me to figure out how to get anything done, particularly when they were little babies.

The best tool in my bag of tricks is definitely having a good jumper. Babies just love to go bounce. These aren't the death traps from my day where I was left to hang in the doorway like a trapped jackrabbit. These are safe units that have toys galore so baby can alternate between bouncing and playing and when bored can turn and find new fun and interesting distractions.


The Baby Jumper both of my children loved

bab-activity-station
bab-activity-station

Create Stations for Baby

As much as the bouncer has to offer, eventually baby will get bored. I like to create what I call stations so if baby tires of one thing and I still need to get something done, baby moves to the next station. I place these in different rooms of the house in various areas so it's not baby overload in any one given space. Plus if I'm cooking dinner it's nice to have a place to put my baby in the kitchen. If I'm working in my office I bring baby with me where I have a station nice and ready. It makes life a lot easier and most importantly it keeps the boss happy.

An Activity Station is the mecca of all toys and distractions. My recommended station as seen below is great because in addition to all the fun things to do, it can actually help baby learn to walk. However it's a stationary unit so you don't have to worry about it running into things or toppling over. Baby will be able to go in circles to play with the various toys while being completely safe. My 3 year old daughter actually still fits and enjoys going in. I really liked the fact that I could put my younger baby in the seat and my daughter could still play with him and the other toys. She also loves pushing him in circles which gets him giggling.

Photo © melissamio - all rights reserved

A Baby Gym is a Portable Baby Station

Another easy station is a baby gym. What's great about these is they're very portable so you can carry them from room to room or easily bring them with you to Grandma's house. Baby can sit back, relax and enjoy the entertainment. It's also a fun way to get in some tummy time.

Photo © melissamio - all rights reserved

Fun and Affordable Baby Gym

Tiny Love Gymini
Super Deluxe Lights & Music Play Mat
Tiny Love Gymini Super Deluxe Lights & Music Play Mat

A baby gym is a must have for any new parent and makes a great baby shower gift idea.

 

Baby Bouncer

A bouncer is very similar to a jumper with a few key differences. Since a baby sits upright in a jumper and lies down in a bouncer, it makes a bouncer the more appropriate choice before baby can sit up by themselves. Even once baby is big enough and strong enough to use a jumper there is still a good period of overlap where both can be enjoyed, giving you just another station for baby to enjoy. I personally used each and valued them differently.

Photo © melissamio - all rights reserved

baby-mat
baby-mat

A Soft Play Mat for Baby

Another favorite for both tummy time and play is a Bear Baby Mat. We received this as a baby gift for my son and at first I wasn't sure if it would really have much appeal. Boy was I wrong- he loved it! It even wins the prize for being the first source of sibling rivalry between my two children. My daughter ended up loving it too and felt strongly that it really had been intended for her. It's incredibly soft so it's a comfortable place for relaxation or play. Just lay baby out with a couple favorite toys. My daughter has to sit on it when she watches Sesame Street. This is a lovable item that will be enjoyed for years to come, long after baby has outgrown many of these other items.

Soft and Cuddly Baby Play Mat

This is available in a large variety of different animals and colors. It's so soft and fun for a baby to lay on. Even my toddler loves it!

Swings are a mother's best friend

Last but definitely not least is the baby swing. Modern swings are a wonderful invention. Use them! I've gone through about 5 swings for my two babies. They are so helpful that in addition to my regular home swing, I make sure to have one at relatives we visit frequently and also have a portable one on hand for vacations or other outings. I've had several conk out on me but for the amount of use we get I can't be too upset. Not only do they keep baby occupied but they soothe baby and help baby to fall asleep. Look for one that can be battery operated but also can plug into the wall, that has a variety of soothing sounds and music, various speeds, different positions depending on whether baby wants to sleep or play, a mobile for entertainment and fabric that is machine washable.


Top Baby Swing Choices

Baby swings offer a wide variety of features and options. You can definitely find the right swing to suit your needs. I always like having one portable swing and one more permanent decked out with features baby swing. Features can include running on batteries, song selections, option to move side to side in addition to back and forth, trays, toys and more.

Use a Baby Carrier

Get things done with a baby on the go

A good baby carrier can really help in almost any situation. If you have a clingy baby and you're trying to get things done around the house then keep your hands free by "wearing" baby. I've done dishes, put away laundry, swept floors, and more with my kid strapped to either my front or back. Our old mailbox was about a block away and my youngest baby was very heavy. It was much easier to put him in the baby carrier than have to hold him up and back while juggling the mail.

Of course it also helps to have a baby carrier when you're out and about. A stroller is great but a lot of times a baby will only be happy in one for so long. If you have a long day planned it's not realistic to hold your baby in your arms the whole time so a good baby carrier that's easy on the back can be a life-saver.


Best Baby Carrier

There are a lot of choices when it comes to your baby-carrying options. They vary in price dramatically. I've bought probably 10 carriers between my two children. I tried saving money at first but in the long run I would have saved money by buying a nicer one to begin with. This is the one I found worked best for me and my children:

Get a baby seat such as a Bumbo Seat

These chairs enable a baby to sit upright before they'd otherwise be able to do so. It's very comfortable and helps them get used to sitting. The seat is contoured for the right posture for baby. The chair is lightweight so you can take it anywhere and set baby down in a safe place. They can watch you while you cook dinner or watch siblings play. Some of the Bumbo's come with a tray or you can add on a tray. This is great for snacking or playing with toys. I know a lot of Mom's who will use this to help their child watch TV though I typically follow expert recommendations to wait until age 2 for a child to start watching TV. But if you're okay with it this is a great option. Either way this seat will make life easier for you and will be something that baby enjoys.

Please note some of the older models were recalled for safety. They now include a belt for safety so baby doesn't fall out so be aware of that if you buy one used.


Bumbo Seat for Baby

The bumbo seat is available in a wide variety of colors to match any nursery or household decor.

Last Resort

If nothing else works or cost is prohibitive, stick baby in an Easter Basket!


Which station to entertain baby do you like best?

Which station would your baby like best?

See results

© 2012 Melissa Miotke

How do you gets things done with a baby in the house?

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    • noner profile image

      noner 3 years ago

      My little one still can't hold his head up, so he's not ready for the activity set yet. But we get a good deal of use out his swing. Its the same swing we used with our first kid (who is 4 now) so t was very durable.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Whew, talk about one stop shopping for all the items to keep baby happily occupied and engaged....I love the idea of creating stations, hadn't heard it put that way but that seems to be something we might naturally happen upon. You do have a wonderful situation and organization is a must for your so you would be the expert for sure...well done. Also, you don't need one more thing to do, so instead of returning a visit....just take a few moments for yourself or meet someone new....all the best to you!

    • jdwheeler profile image

      jdwheeler 4 years ago

      A great topic of discussion. I know new moms and dads are looking for any information on this subject! It's tough but can be done!

    • TACTCI LM profile image

      TACTCI LM 4 years ago

      Had to come back and stick this up on my Stay at Home Mom board on Pinterest!

    • TACTCI LM profile image

      TACTCI LM 4 years ago

      Those Bumpo seats are definitely a great fit for this lens, so helpful when trying to get things done around the house! Another great lens Melissa, love the personal touch.

    • TACTCI LM profile image

      TACTCI LM 4 years ago

      Those Bumpo seats are definitely a great fit for this lens, so helpful when trying to get things done around the house! Another great lens Melissa, love the personal touch.

    • Mamabyrd profile image

      Mamabyrd 4 years ago

      The baby jumpers were my saviors when my twin girls were babies. They loved those things and it gave me a few moments of peace.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      It is my turn to bless you now that I've earned my wings. Thank you for all your blessings and encouragement. I hope you and your family are doing well.

    • norma-holt profile image

      norma-holt 4 years ago

      A new blessing on this lovely lens and may you have a wonderful, successful and happy 2013. Hugs

    • BlogsWriter profile image

      BlogsWriter 4 years ago

      Raising a baby is a beautiful experience, one can surely make use of these tips.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Melissa, I am laughing for Joy because of the pictures you share, especially the ones of your little boy. Hey nice ideas for getting things done, Mom! God Bless! :)

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      No babies in the house here, but I appreciate how you've highlighted how you use various practical toys and practical items to get things done with a new baby. God bless you and your family...stay blessed y'all! :)

    • Didijudy profile image

      Didijudy 4 years ago from Canada

      Surely did appreciate the jumper and the activity center when I used to babysit my nieces. Awesome lens and great tips for new parents!

    • LouisaDembul profile image

      LouisaDembul 4 years ago

      This brings back so many memories trying to do things with baby in one hand.....These tips are great, both mother and child will be happier!

    • VspaBotanicals profile image

      VspaBotanicals 4 years ago

      Such beautiful photos. You definitely have to create a station for the baby, or you won't get much things done at all. Great lens.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      I don't think we would have ever gotten anything done without our baby swing and our bouncer shaped like a car. Definitely can't leave baby unattended for a minute. A safe way to get what you need to get done done, while your baby has a little fun.

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      anonymous 4 years ago

      Brilliant ideas! Thanks!

    • profile image

      poutine 4 years ago

      I did use the baby jumper, but it was nothing fancy like today's.

    • profile image

      djroll 4 years ago

      A very helpful lens for new parents and grandparents too. Thanks!

    • Jogalog profile image

      Jogalog 5 years ago

      My baby loves her jumper at the moment. Her favourite activity is always changing though and I wish I had more space to put different activity stations in.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      At the moment my baby is totally in love with remot controller (a music toy) ... I'm listening the sounds of that toy from our living room right now:). I really enjoyed reading this lens, thank you.

    • Carashops profile image

      Cara 5 years ago

      Beautiful lens that brought back wonderful memories of when my boys were babies.

    • Annbulance2000 profile image

      Annbulance2000 5 years ago

      lovely! Maybe there will be another grandchild some day, with all the bright colours and different textures to choose from now, it certainly makes little ones lives exciting. Thanks.

    • maryLuu profile image

      maryLuu 5 years ago

      Very useful lens!

    • Andrejk profile image

      Andrejk 5 years ago

      Very nice lens, thanks for sharing!

    • Andrejk profile image

      Andrejk 5 years ago

      Very nice lens, thanks for sharing!

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      gusti-agung 5 years ago

      @trand82: same with me.. glad that I found this lens.. thanks

    • profile image

      trand82 5 years ago

      I will become a father very soon, It was a really nice reading from your lens.Thank You for sharing this, Its very useful.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @RandomBlock: Congrats on your baby! The first couple of weeks are harder than I think most people expect. This was true for me. It seems like it's going to be tough forever and it's hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. However it gets easier so quickly and will be the best experience of your life! Get lots of sleep now...

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Rosaquid: Thank you!

    • RandomBlock profile image

      RandomBlock 5 years ago

      great lense, our first is due in 4 months, I think I am going to have to bookmark it for then. Any advice for a soon to be parent?

    • Rosaquid profile image

      Rosaquid 5 years ago

      I remember those sweet, bygone days. Our babies found my husband and me to be their favorite entertainment. They just loved being with us and hearing us talk. They still do!Congratulations on your new baby and on achieving Giant Squid-dom!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @ecogranny: Thank you so much!

    • TolovajWordsmith profile image

      Tolovaj Publishing House 5 years ago from Ljubljana

      It is a tough job, it takes a lot of creativity, a lot of energy, a lot of time and you always have to expect the unexpected. One great tool for keeping babies entertained are boxes.It seems the can sometimes have even more fun with a box than a toy inside!

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 5 years ago from San Francisco

      P.S. Congratulations on achieving Giant Squid status! That's how I learned about this page. : )

    • ecogranny profile image

      Kathryn Grace 5 years ago from San Francisco

      My new grandbaby just loves to play on the Einstein Rainforest Baby Gym. The hanging toys mesmerize her, and she gets so excited when she kicks one and it makes a sound. Watching her develop hand-eye coordination as she learns to make her hands move to touch the toys is sheer joy.

    • culwisdom profile image

      culwisdom 5 years ago

      GREAT!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @PAVION: Yes nap time is one of my favorite times!

    • Bonfire Designs profile image

      Bonfire Designs 5 years ago

      Lovely lens and nice to share for busy families with newborns who think they just can't get enough time, because really it's so much work and so worth every minute!

    • profile image

      PAVION 5 years ago

      One thing that always helps you and the child was a set nap time. They stop being cranky, you get to do things they stop being cranky.

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      A very helpful lens.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Rfiskaali: I'm sure even once the baby stuff ends it will always be the beginning of new things. Until you have an empty nest and then you'll probably end up missing the stuff:)

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @DrBillSmithWriter: Thank you Dr Bill!

    • Rfiskaali profile image

      Rebecca Fiskaali 5 years ago from Florida

      We had the jumper, the bouncer and a few scattered staions around the house. It was hard back then cause I had two infants ("Irish Twins - born within a year of each other). So it seemed like the bouner, high chairs, and activity stations NEVER left. Now with my oldest starting kindergarten it's "new" clutter....crayons, art supplies, "kitchen supplies" dolls etc. Does the baby stuff ever end?

    • DrBillSmithWriter profile image

      William Leverne Smith 5 years ago from Hollister, MO

      All good suggestions... Thanks for sharing. Welcome to Giant Squiddom, as well... keep up the good work! ;-)

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @IncomeFromHomeT: Good idea!

    • IncomeFromHomeT profile image

      IncomeFromHomeT 5 years ago

      Oh, do I remember those days! Sometimes putting the older kids to work making bright and fun pictures to hang on the wall above the new baby's crib helps keep them ALL occupied! Even better, put them to work making mobiles.

    • seashell2 profile image

      seashell2 5 years ago

      Great ideas for entertaining babies!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @shahedashaikh: Great tip- thanks for sharing!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Rankography: Thanks so much!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @shellys-space: Thank you!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @montanatravel52: Thanks so much!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Lisa Remmick: I know I love watching babies bounce particularly when it's new to them. I have tons of pictures of my babies in bouncers:)

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Doc_Holliday: Yeah there's no way I could have handled that at that age. I don't think I could handle it now!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Inkflo: You're welcome:)

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @montanatravel52: Haha:) Thank you!

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      anonymous 5 years ago

      I think that the swing and jumper were things that my kids enjoyed most and many of the grandkids too.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @poldepc lm: Thank you!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @pawpaw911: Yes I totally agree. Although I love each new stage:) Thanks so much

    • shahedashaikh profile image

      shahedashaikh 5 years ago

      A roller with colorful balls inside and tingling sounds.This keeps the baby moving and crawling as the baby pushes the ball.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @RichLeighHD: Thanks! I'm pretty excited:)

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      Ladybird 5 years ago

      A new baby turns your life upside down. Great lens.

    • Rankography profile image

      Rankography 5 years ago

      Congrats on becoming a Giant!

    • shellys-space profile image

      Shelly Sellers 5 years ago from Midwest U.S.A.

      I love the baby play stations! Congrats on Giant Squid!

    • Lisa Remmick profile image

      Lisa Remmick 5 years ago

      The jumper is great and it also helps baby to develop their leg muscles. Soo much fun to watch because they get so excited when bouncing!

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      Paul Turner 5 years ago from Birmingham, Al.

      Been there done that three times. Where was this article when I needed it? Oh that's right.the internet had not been invented yet. :)

    • profile image

      Doc_Holliday 5 years ago

      Just watched a story on TV of an 18 y/o mother who has 2 y/o triplets. Boy, does that take organising. A bit like herding kittens !!

    • profile image

      Inkflo 5 years ago

      On behalf of all new parents everywhere, we send our thanks!

    • Aster56 profile image

      Aster56 5 years ago

      I like the baby mat . Leave the baby with some toys on the mat to play till they fall asleep playing.

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      I like your perspective on baby entertainment. Great lens

    • montanatravel52 profile image

      montanatravel52 5 years ago

      Fun and great ideas, you almost make me want to go back and do it again with all this neat stuff! Almost:) Congrats on becoming a giant!

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      Stephen J Parkin 5 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      I can not really comment as the last time Iooked after a baby was over 40 years ago! LOL

    • Mariajomith profile image

      maria 5 years ago

      It has been a while for me, but I really enjoyed your beautiful photos

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 5 years ago

      thx for sharing this lens, and congrats on becoming a giant

    • profile image

      pawpaw911 5 years ago

      Very fun time. They are so cute at that age. We have a 2 year old grandson, and sometimes miss the baby stage. Congrats on becoming a giant.

    • Elaine Chen profile image

      Elaine Chen 5 years ago

      great lens and thanks a lot for sharing. This lens really make me recall the time I bring back my newborn baby from hospital :-)

    • RichLeighHD profile image

      RichLeighHD 5 years ago

      Great lens... And congratulations on becoming a Giant Squid!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @athomemomblog: It's funny how each child is so different:)

    • athomemomblog profile image

      Genesis Davies 5 years ago from Guatemala

      Love that activity station! I am a WAHM, too, and with my first two kids, no problem. The third, however, I've found more difficult for some reason, even though he's my calmest baby!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      @Melissa Miotke: That's the life which all of us dreamed of.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @TreasuresBrenda: Yes that's so true. Mine aren't that old but I still don't know what's happened to the time. They seem to grow and change every day. Sometimes I do find a busy day and realize I haven't focused on them enough which defeats to whole point of being a stay at home mom.... But these tips help me to get my work done efficiently so I can focus on what matters most:)

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 5 years ago from Canada

      Lots of great ideas -- I remember how hard it can be to get things done when you have little ones -- but make sure to stop and enjoy your wee ones, too, because before you know it...they'll be 20 and 18 and you'll be wondering where the time went.

    • Rosetta Slone profile image

      Rosetta Slone 5 years ago from Under a coconut tree

      I love this. My son didn't want to be in a bouncer, swing or anything other than in my arms for the first few weeks. Having a sling was essential, and let me get on with chores while having baby cuddles.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Suzi63: Thank you:) Yes carriers are a god send!

    • profile image

      Suzi63 5 years ago

      Great ideas for new mums, always hard to find things to keep the little one busy when you need to get other things done. Love the baby carriers, used one all the time when my daughter was at that age. :))

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @fifinn: I'm glad to hear that. Congrats on your baby!

    • profile image

      fifinn 5 years ago

      I will soon have a baby. The information contained on this lens is very helpful to me.

    • ussiandiram profile image

      ussiandiram 5 years ago

      i like the bouncer

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @anonymous: Congrats on your pregnancy!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      Thank you for sharing. My wife and I are expecting in December and these items can be very useful.

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      Kristen 5 years ago from Boston

      Great tips. Too bad my 1 year old is always on the move and has outgrown all of the swings, bouncies and other wonderful things that keep babies confined (I mean happy ;)

    • TaraWojt profile image

      Tara Wojtaszek 5 years ago

      I should really get an activity station, that's a great idea. Usually I alternate between the bouncer, play yard and the high chair (with some toys on the tray). The Fisher-Price Newborn to Toddler rocker was my saving grace that allowed me to get a shower in. Great suggestions, and it's great you're able to get so much done each day : )

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @Gypzeerose: Thank you so much!

    • Gypzeerose profile image

      Rose Jones 5 years ago

      Wish I had had an activity station when my kids were younger! Another excellent lens - Squid Angel Blessed.

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      Guided Abundance 5 years ago from Mobile, AL

      My Niece will be having her 4th child in August. It's right around the corner. Can't wait.

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @bob-brown lm: Thank you!

    • bob-brown lm profile image

      bob-brown lm 5 years ago

      Thanks for great suggestions!P.S Your children are so cute!!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @JoshK47: Thank you so much!

    • profile image

      JoshK47 5 years ago

      What an excellent guide - certainly can be rough with a new little one! Blessed by a SquidAngel!

    • Melissa Miotke profile image
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      Melissa Miotke 5 years ago from Arizona

      @LadyKeesh: Wow you have your hands full! Congrats on the pregnancy!