Friday, May 15, 2009

Dicas da Tina

Achei fuçando o site da Tina, uma designer suiça que mora aqui no Brooklyn, essa lista para novos pais. Como ela é super moderna e tem um bom gosto do caramba, não pude deixar de dividir com vocês.

Here are a few products or tricks I came by after we had our little Peanut Ella. I’d like to share what I’ve learned, hoping it may help you with your arrival! I will try to add new ‘insights’ as I go along on this exciting journey of parenthood!

Tina / aka swissmiss


- I am not sure what I would have done without my Bellaband during my pregnancy! I wore my regular pants up til the very end. Really. Also, it comes in handy after you have your little one…

- Have a LOT of diapers ready when you get home from the hospital. It’s unbelievable but these little nuggets poop all the time. You should buy the newborn diapers, they are smaller and have a slightly different shape around the belly button. (We used the Huggies Newborn diapers). Now I use the Seventh Generation Diapers, as they don’t have any bleach in them. I am dying to finally try the gDiapers. (next paragraph)

- Consider buying the gdiapers. much better for the environment and cute looking. I know several people that swear by them. You can flush (yes flush) the inside down the toilet or just put them in the trash. If you have a backyard you can even compost them, no kidding). Read up about them on their site – they won tons of awards!

- Dont’ schlepp! Order diapers/formula etc online at

- Buy lots of wipes, but don’t buy Huggies. (They gave Ella and my friend’s baby a BAD diaper rash and trust me, you don’t want that to happen.) I personally love the Seventh Generation (at health food stores) ones. The Pampers Sensitive ones are good too, I especially like the dispenser those come with.

- When it comes to tending to the baby in the middle of the night it’s all about not putting on too much light. You don’t want to ‘totally’ wake the baby (and yourself). I use Candelas, they give the perfect amount of light! I use them EVERY night and LOVE them!

- If you need to bottle feed the baby, get the Dr.Browns. They don’t create a vacuum and the babys are therefore less colicy. They made a huge difference with our little Ella. Also, if you’re thinking about buying a bottle warmer, I prefer the Munchkin one over the Avent. The Munchkin one stops heating after a certain amount of time. I regularly ‘boiled’ the milk in the Avent one because I got too distracted tending to the baby…

- As for bottle cleaning and sterilizing, get the “Medela Quick Clean Micro Steam Bags”. So easy!

- If you’re considering buying a swing (which i would highly recommend) Target sells one, that is not as ugly as all the others, that only costs $40. It’s called the Open Top Take along swing. Otherwise: my friend’s baby loves the McLaren Activity Baby Rocker. It vibrates and you can manually rock it. Gary and I were totally against a swing, but after several parents and our doula told us that the swing might be a big saviour in getting the baby to sleep and nap, we gave in. (There goes the minimalistic stylish urban apartment, ha!) Ella took r-e-a-l-l-y long naps in the swing, sometimes even spent the entire night in it. (which helps them if they have acid reflux) Dr. Karp (the Happiest Baby on the block author) swears by them as well. Really, buy one!

- Make sure to have a digital fever thermoter at home. Actually, they recommend having two, in case the battery dies in one of them. Also, stock up on Tylenol Cold Drops for infants. Ella had a fever in the middle of the night (after she got her shots) and with the help of the drops we got it down within about 40 minutes. It’s really scary when you realize that your baby is hot like an oven in the middle of the night….

- We bought a bathtub, actually we bought two: a plasticy, molded
one and a mesh/fabric one, that folds down. Both are ok, but not worth it. BEST is the simple Baby Bath Cradle made by Munchkin… Place it in your bathtub, run water and lay the baby on it. Much easier and relaxing for both of you. This way, you don’t have to worry about the baby slipping out of your hands. Also, that thing uses no space and only costs about $4.

- Make sure to have a yoga ball at home. Whenever Ella got totally fussy and worked up, sitting on the yoga ball holding her and bouncing her up and down was the only thing that would calm her. I was literally bouncing her for hours in the very beginning. Also, it was a great way to get her to fall asleep, when nothing else worked. We were told that the up and down movement mimicks what babies experience in our belly.

- Also, a rocking chair really does wonders. I didn’t like and simply didn’t have room for the typical rocking chairs/nursing chairs you can get. Gary and I found a perfect one at DWR. It’s called the Rex Rocking Chair – it’s comfortable AND it folds up. Yes, you read right, it folds up so you can put it away if you don’t need it or have company come over and need that space in your living room. We love it. The amazing thing is, that just by slightly tilting your head forward it starts to rock. Truly amazing. Try it!

- I have Ella sleeping in a moses basket next to our bed. (Our bed is really low) I know from my friends, who have the typical high american beds, that a co-sleeper works really well. I just discovered this one converts into a toddler bench. The usual co-sleepers are really big and ugly if you ask me.

- I seriously thought the “My brest friend” pillow was silly when I first saw it. After spending pretty much all day on the sofa breastfeeding Ella in the beginning, I realized that it was a good idea to have a pillow that attaches to you. That way, if you need to get up and change the baby or get something, you don’t have to deal with the taking away/putting back of the pillow. I sometimes had that thing strapped to me the entire day. HA!

- Make sure to have a sling carrier at home. Babies love it to be tucked into them and being carried around. They love being close to your body and hearing your heartbeat.

- If you’re going to be driving alone with your little one, make sure to get a mirrow which will allow you to see your little peanut. We love the Bear View Infant Mirror. It’s not as bulky and view-obstructing as the regular, plain big ones you can get. Once the little one starts looking at him/herself, you can also attach this one to your crib. It’s cute looking.

- Babies love to be swaddled. To make your life easier, get the Miracle blanket. We got other ones but they don’t work as well as the ‘flaps’ are too small and the baby can easily get ‘undone’.

- Planning for our first vacation, we were in shock when we saw how big and bulky Pack-and-Play’s are. Oy! We found a GREAT travel bed called Peapod TravelBed. It’s a mini tent with an inflatable mattress. Ella loves it! The practical thing, besides it being really small and light when folded up, it also protects your baby from mosquitos and the sun.

- A swiss company came out with a brilliant product called Baby JoJo. It’s a baby hammock that is hanging from a spring. It basically mimics the up and down movement the baby experiences in the womb. It works like a charm on Ella. The company apparently is not allowed to sell directly to the states. I think it has to do with liability and insurance issues. Too bad.

- Ella LIVES in the Oeuf lounger! Invented by a Brooklyn based couple, we can’t thank them enough! It’s superstylish (not like the average kids/baby stuff) AND it’s practical. It allowed us to have many relaxed dinners as you can easily bounce the baby just by touching the bar on the bottom with your big toe. We take it on travels with us (comes apart easily) as it is truly Ella’s favorite way of hanging out. We recommend getting a head-support like this one from Eddie Bauer though. In the very beginning they tend to ‘fall over’ and there’s not enough support. You want to see how Zen she is the Oeuf Lounger? Here you go!


Do you live in NYC? Are you considering taking any classes? We took the Epidural Birthing Class, the “how to take care of a newborn” and the “Breastfeeding” class at the Realbirth Center?
All worth the money and time… If you can, try to take one of the classes with “Hallie Greider”, she was amazing. Also, she acts as a labor doula, I would have hired her in a heartbeat. Such a great woman. Check out her site:


Some of these things might be obvious to you, they weren’t to me. I wish somebody would have told me. (I should have read the books,huh?):

- The first three months are rough, as the babies can’t hold much food in their little bellies, so they wake up all the time. Now I belive it, the first three months will pass quickly and then it’s going to be REALLY fun. Everybody told me that. But when you’re a sleepdeprived new parent, three months seem like an eternity. It’s amazing how all of a sudden they ‘turn the corner’, become happy, interact, smile, look at you and most of all sleep more! SLEEP! Just mentally prepare yourself for a challenging first 2-3 months.

- Babies need to nap A LOT! If they don’t, like our Ella, try everything to help them sleep. They shouldn’t be up and awake more than 2-3 hours at a stretch. Look for signs of tiredness (rubbing their eyes, yawning etc and TRY TO PUT THEM DOWN right away. Once they get overtired, they get all worked up!)

- Babies need to be burped after feedings, always. I didn’t realize in the beginning how important the burping is. They get superfuzzy and uncomfortable when they have a ‘bubble’ stuck in them.

- The ‘Five S’ technique by Dr. Karp really works. Buy the book or better the DVD and learn how to comfort a newborn.

- It sounds weird and never made sense to me, but it’s true: The more your baby naps during the day, the more she/he will sleep at night. Sleep begets sleep. Putting them down later in the evening will not result in sleeping longer. It does not work.

- Babies can get overstimulated. One sign to look for is when they move their head to the side and look away.


I thought of some things to consider adding to your list: the cloud b sleep sheep. Paloma fell asleep to the waves noise every night for the first two months. I found the other sounds scary—especially the whales!—but the waves were very relaxing for the whole family.

Also, we used the close and secure sleeper for the first two months, and it was a life saver. I didn’t have to get out of bed to nurse and never worried about rolling over her. The design is ugly, and it requires a large bed, but other than that, it was a great thing to have until she started sleeping longer stretches and we moved her to her bassinet.



- Ella was a screaming/unhappy baby in the first few weeks. After 3.5 weeks of only getting 1-1.5 hours of sleep at a time, nursing being a nightmare and Ella being generally unhappy and crying, I went to see an Osteopath. What can I say, I walked in with a screaming unhappy baby and walked out with a zen, smiling Ella. WHAT A MIRACLE! Read up about Osteopathy here. She seriously made a little miracle happen with Ella. She picked her up and knew right away what the problem was. After 15minutes of treatment, Ella was calm and happy. I am NOT kidding!

- I always post cute/cool kids stuff on my blog.


(sorry for the mess, I’ll clean them up eventually):〈=&id=42229

If you have any tips you’d like me to add to this list, email me at tinaroth [at]


Anonymous said...

Juliana, que máximo! Obrigada pelas dicas. Hoje de manha estava pensando em postar sobre esse tema que tanto me preocupa, ou seja, tudo o que eu tenho que comprar. Pra nao ter de menos nem demais, né?

Nathalia said...

Nossa, adorei todas as dicas (morri de rir com o comentario do swing - "There goes the minimalistic stylish urban apartment"). Tambem adorei as sandalias ali de cima. E ainda posso justificar a compra com os meus pes inchados de gravida :)
E, obviamente, AMEI os cupcakes dos quatro meses do Thomas. Que capricho! Da para ver pela foto que foi feito com muito amor.
Um beijo,

Anonymous said...

Que show de lista! Essa mamadeira Dr. Browns é muito boa, tenho tb da MAM com o recurso de tirar o ar, usei ambas algumas vezes e gostei. Elas só são mais chatinhas de lavar. Os lecinhos da Huggies tb deram assaduras na minha baby :/ Agora swaddle, impossível, já tentei de tudo, com manta, com fralda, com kidopotamus de malha e de soft e nada... aqui nunca funcionou, minha filha fazia de tudo para soltar os bracinhos e não sossegava enquanto não conseguia!