In this ongoing update, we’ll fill you in on the latest in gear, gadgets, and new ideas that can make caring for your baby safer, more efficient, or more fun.
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Leapfrog’s LeapBand fitness tracker, available at Amazon for under $25, makes it fun for kids to be fit.
Geared toward children ages 4 through 7, the LeapBand can be preloaded with 50 different activity challenges, from wriggling like a worm to marching like an elephant.
There’s a built-in reward factor, in which activities garner points and prizes once completed. And kids can choose a pet mascot from among an array of eight, name the pet, and use rewards for challenges to feed their pets or simply help their pets thrive through the children’s physical activities.
The LeapBand also functions as a digital or analog watch, and helps children to learn time through verbal cues. It runs on a rechargeable battery that can be charged via a USB port, and includes parental controls.
Leapfrog’s LeapBand is available here.
Priced at under $20, the First Years Infant-to-Toddler Tub is a great deal with great Amazon reviews from parents who use it. As its name says, the ergonomically designed tub grows along with your baby. It comes with a soft mesh netting and a padded headrest that cradles baby during bathtime in either tub or sink, and both the mesh and the headrest are mildew-resistant.
The drain plug changes color and alerts parents when the water is too hot, and the well at the base of the tub holds bathingsupplies and toys. The angle is adjustable from a slight slant for young babies to a straight back once baby can sit up.
Reviewers notes how the mesh hammock keeps baby in place during the slippery process of bathing, and the sturdiness of the tub. They also love the fact that it props newborns for beginning sponge baths, but is just as handy for immersion bathing once baby grows in size.
The tub fits both single- and double-wide sinks, and easily drains out the dirty water when you’re done bathing baby.
Reviewers point out that once baby reaches toddler size and mobility, it’s sometimes easier to just place baby in the bathtub, especially if baby moves around a lot. But most agree that for newborns and babies under 18 months, the tub provides unbeatable stability, ease of use and convenience.
The First Years Infant-to-Toddler Tub comes in blue or pink, and is available here.
Parents on the go will love ZenKid’s stroller organizer, currently on sale at Amazon for about $25. The collapsible and durable velcro-attached bag includes room for a few large bottles, keys, wallet, cell phone, wipes, diapers, snacks and other miscellany and keeps your hands free from purses and bulky diaper bags while walking baby or using a jogger.
The organizer comes with an insulated cup or bottle holder, which keeps temperatures stable, and both a zippered and mesh mini-compartments. The velcro straps are long, and adjustable, so the organizer fits even the bulkiest strollers.
Amazon reviewers love the organizer bag and have rated it 5 stars. They point out that it’s easy to clean, holds as much as far-bigger diaper bags, and is a lifesaver on family outings where you’d bring a stroller.
The organizer weighs only 8 ounces, and measures 13 x 4 x 6.5 inches. ZenKid offers a no-hassle money-back guarantee and will provide you a full refund if you aren’t happy.
Buy it here.
Yet another amazing learning toy from VTech: Its Touch and Learn Activity Desk, geared to toddlers aged 2 to 4 years old, will provide your child with hours of educational fun.
It comes with four double-sided activity mats that overlay the top of the desk and include activities that introduce numbers, letters, animals, people and more. Flip up the desktop and there’s a chalkboard/easel for your child’s creative masterpieces.
The desk, which runs on four AA batteries and has an LED display, includes 30+ learning activities, 20+ songs, and 160+ vocabulary words. There’s a volume control for sound, and an auto-shutoff feature to prevent battery rundown.
The Vtech Touch and Learn Activity Desk is currently priced at just under $50 on Amazon and is available here.