I thought I would share some of our product picks- I am by no means an expert, but we tried to do as much research as possible and purchase products that worked for our lifestyle.
The stroller we decided on, after much test driving and debate was the UPPA Baby. We LOVE it so far- and hope we still love it when we actually use it outside. We decided that the Bugaboo was too hard for me to fold up- if I lived in Manhattan, I would get it for sure- because I could just leave it in one piece and drive it in and out of the apartment- up the elevators etc- no problem. But to constantly fold and unfold it was too much for me- The Uppa folds and unfolds really easily (well, comparatively, I still have to get used to it). With the Quinny, we were worried about the size, and weren't sure how long it would last- we heard that most people graduated from the buzz to the zap (the travel version) rather quickly and never used the buzz again. With the Uppa, we are able to purchase an added second seat when/if #2 comes along and one of those kick plates for kids to stand on. All this combined with the fact that it is just as/almost as cute at the bugaboo, and I was convinced. PLUS...as a bonus, the bassinet attachment is included in the price! So there are three options, the car seat (which does require an adaptor, the bassinet, and the regular child seat. We got it in black, although I liked the red and blue models as well, and I can't wait to try it out! If you live in Chicagoland, I would recommend Galt Baby. They were really helpful and even offered free delivery that included an in home demo. I loved the service they provided. They will even store your stroller for you, free of charge, if you buy it early and don't want it sitting at your house. I really liked them.
For the Monitor- I was at a loss- so Big Guy Picked one...cross your fingers. Hopefully if it is terrible, we can exchange it.
We also picked a bunch of things that will hopefully entertain, stimulate and/or soothe the baby. All of this stuff adds up! We have so much baby gear! We settled on the Diaper Dekor as a diaper pail. I didn't want one that needed special refills, but I read that the Diaper Champ smelled like poo, so I had to choose this one.
We received the Evenflow exer-saucer as a gift.
We picked up the fisher price rain forest bouncy chair this weekend- my first selfless act of motherhood. I HATE the look of this thing, but I have heard from so many people that their babies LOVE it, so I made myself get over the fact that it is the ugliest thing I have ever seen.
Seriously...I hate it. I hope the baby loves it.
For the swing, I was convinced I needed to pick another hideous monstrosity- and this one was going to cost around $200. In the end we made a game-time gamble and chose the Graco portable car seat adaptable swing. This has the same muti-speed functionality, music and ambient noise features as the other models, but it isn't enormous and I can move it from room to room. I might have to put a mobile on it or something- Not sure if they care about them in the swing or if they mainly fall asleep- I suppose I will find out if our gamble pays off.
Our baby bath choice was the Summer Infant Bath
My Diaper bag is a Skip Hop- mostly because I HATED everything on the market, and people said this one was nice.
We also got a Baby Einstein Neptune Ocean Play-Gym- Big Guy set this up last night and was actually laying IN it..I think he liked it a little too much.
Plus we finally picked a couple options for going home outfits which is a relief! And we grabbed some Dr. Brown's BPA-free bottles because we heard they were good.
We still need to get a mattress for the bassinet that my grandfather built. It was modeled it after one that my aunt saw in a catalogue when she was pregnant and it got passed to us. It is special to us because he made it, and we plan to use it in our bedroom until we can bear to move the baby to the nursery.
That is all I can think of for now- I know we have purchased a million other things- because they are all over my house and basement. We are so excited about welcoming our little bundle and i can't wait to share the news! I hope this was helpful- feel free to ask any questions about why I chose something- I am happy to share!