Friday, March 4, 2011

The ultimate BumGenius stash booster!

Kelly Wels is hosting a fabulous, amazing, not-to-be-missed BumGenius 4.0 sweepstakes! I know I already posted that I have a *lot* of BumGenius, but not 4.0's, and not brand new ones! I need more....(I need, I need! I want, I want). Super excited about this giveaway, especially since it includes a sprayer, which I haven't gotten the chance to try out yet. Go look!

The website is here, and you can sign up with the facebook entry form.

Happy Heinys giveaway!

I mentioned before that I have a HUGE cloth diaper stash (>60) but all of those are BumGenius 3.0 and sunbabies 3.0. I have some BumGenius 4.0 snaps coming in the mail, but I've been itching to try some other brands.

Imagine my excitement - over at the Cloth Diaper Whisperer there is a happy heinys giveaway! Two "one for all" diapers are up for grabs!

Bumbo Sitter

Before I had Atlas, there were two things that I was very concerned that we have in order to be Ready for baby. One was a cloth diaper stash (I had over 60 before I hit the third trimester!) and the other was a bumbo sitter.

If you're not familiar with bumbos, they are a soft foam seat designed to help your infant sit up before he/she is truly able to sit on their own. They provide excellent support for baby's torso, allowing him to interact and play without being held by an adult. Bumbos have a detachable tray, so baby can snack or have toys easily available. Its a pretty neat item, and it was one that I thought my baby MUST have.

I was lucky enough to have a friend purchase one for me in snazzy orange. I eagerly awaited the right time frame to try it out on Atlas (manufacturer states its for 1 month and up). At about three months, we put him in it for the first time - lo and behold, my baby can sit! Alas, he listed to one side, not quite ready. Two weeks later we tried again, this time using it in the bathtub to change up our nightly routine. Success! Atlas loved being surrounded by water while sitting securely and played happily. It is very important to note that using the bumbo in the bath required me to keep my hands on it at all times, as it was fairly buoyant. Babies should never be left unattended in the seat, and certainly not in the bath. In fact, the seats were briefly recalled a few years ago when babies were falling from high surfaces while in the bumbo. That sounds like user error to me, and not the products fault. So, requires supervision but still, very fun.

All in all, we liked the bumbo. However, it is a niche item, useful only for a few months while baby is too tiny to sit by himself. It comes with a hefty price tag ($49.99 at for a bumbo with tray) for such a small window of use. They are usually available on Craigslist for $20 or so used, but even that seems like a steep price to me for what is essentially a hunk of foam. LOVED the bumbo as a gift, but I'm not sure that I would purchase it on my own after trying it.

Thred UP!

New Gymboree SweetPea Outfit is an awesome website that helps frugal mamas find gently used brand name clothing for their kids. For $15.95, you can have a box stuffed with seasonally appropriate, great condition clothing in your child's size shipped right to your front door!

The way it works is you search for the gender, size and season of clothing you would like. Each link is to box of clothing that has been "stuffed" for that size/gender. The mamas (and some papas)  list descriptions of the items and note any special features. Boxes are $5 each and all come in a USPS medium flat rate box ($10.95 shipping cost). Boxes can have one unique item like a fabulous octopus costume for your four year old or be packed full of 30 onesies for the brand new baby. Since you pick the box you want to come, you should have a pretty good idea of what to expect. Mamas can list clothing, books, toys - I've even seen maternity items and jewelry! Once you find a lister you like, you can be alerted of new boxes they pack or even make special requests. ThredUp requires you to stuff and ship boxes of your own once you have picked a few boxes, but sending boxes is absolutely free - they even ship you a 10 pack of flat rate boxes at no charge!

My son is now 4 months old, and I can proudly say that I haven't once bought him a new article of clothing. We were blessed in the baby shower department, and he has more clothes than he'll probably ever get to wear, but my goal is to always upcycle his clothing and to buy used from yard sales or consignment stores. It frightens me that some stores want more for my infant's clothing than I'd be willing to pay for my own clothes! ThredUp is a great way to get a large amount of clothing in superb condition for about a dollar an item (sometimes less!) Even though he still has tons of clothes, I wanted to check it out so I picked a box of 6-9 month old clothing.

I received my box less than two days after ordering it, and it was packed full of adorable clothing. I got some NWOT Robeez (a $30 value) and 8 outfits - the outfit from Gymboree alone was worth the $15!  Listers include size, season, and brand of each article of clothing. The website doesn't include pictures of the items, but if you MUST know, you can request pictures from the person listing or  check out the facebook page where mamas have posted more details about their boxes. I found that it was fun to be surprised by what comes.

ThredUp also partners with retailers to present their Golden Threds, which are boxes stuffed with NEW items, often from boutiques. These boxes cost exactly the same as the others, and are "hidden" among the regular boxes for a fun treat while browsing.

 ThredUp is a great way to get clothing for your kids in excellent condition for the same as or less than consignment store prices.  The ThredUp golden rule is that you never send an article of clothing that you wouldn't be pleased to receive in the mail yourself, so it is a website that encourages the joy of giving also. A great site!