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Having a kid means getting to be a kid all over again.  Who knew?!  I’m thrilled!  Little Friend has given me ample opportunities to stumble across some of the coolest toys, baby gadgets, and clothing (because who knew kids outgrow yesterday’s clothes overnight—sheesh!).  Here are my top ten (okay, top eleven, no, top twelve, because I can’t restrain myself) favorite baby- and kid-gear posts from the past year.  They’re worth re-visiting to buy for your own tot, a baby shower gift, or lacking all other excuses, yourself!

BabyBabyOhBaby DVD – My favorite shower gift, BabyBabyOhBaby is an informative, relaxing, and inspiring guide to infant massage.  The bonding moments created between baby and parent are a priceless gift to any new parent.

Dabawalla Bags– My newest fav in the Back-to-School line-up, Dabawalla bags (backpacks and lunch totes) avoid featuring the ubiquitous action heroes and princesses and instead champion designs that are creative, unique, and above all, kid-friendly.

Dr. Robin’s Sunscreen – Finally a sunscreen that protects my baby’s skin (and my skin, for that matter) without adding harsh, toxic chemicals to the mix.  Dr. Robin’s all-natural sunscreen is safe, easy-to-apply, and effective.  I won’t pack a pool bag without including a bottle of Dr. Robin’s.

Happy Baby Co. –  Green living and child-raising just got infinitely easier with Happy Baby Company.  HBC specializes in cloth diapers, baby carriers, eco-friendly toys, and organic clothing, making me one happy mama.

Julian & Co. jewelry – One of the most fashionable and memorable ways to commemorate the birth of a new baby, Julian & Co jewelry offers personalized, modern designs that will collect compliments each time you wear a piece in public.

Livie and Luca shoes – I’ve given up buying any other brand of shoes for Little Friend (and am not-so-secretly jealous these shoes don’t come in my size).  Adorable to the point of disbelief and luxuriously comfortable, Livie and Lucas are a Must Have!

Matilda Jane Clothing – Little Friend is quickly turning into a walking billboard for Matilda Jane clothing design, because I just can’t get my hands on enough MJC pieces.  The clothing lines are whimsical, vintage-inspired, and one-of-a-kind.

Moby Wrap – My favorite wrap to use from newborn days through the toddler years, the Moby Wrap is a baby carrier that’s soft, loving, nurturing, and ridiculously portable and packable.

Signing Time DVDs – I’m thinking of re-writing “God Bless America” to the tune of “God Bless Signing Time” because at (almost) two-years-old, Little Friend can say only 13 words, but she can sign (count them!) over 60 words.  (Start humming “God Bless Signing Time” now.)  This series of baby sign language DVDs increases communication to the point that the dreaded terrible-twos tantrums disappear.  I swear.

Toddler book list – If Dr. Seuss has numbed your tongue, and one more repetition of good nights to the objects in a great green room will send you to the loony bin, turn to these great titles for sure-to-please-parent-AND-toddler reading times.  Also a great resource for baby shower gifts.

Toddler Tote – Creativity and parental sanity have a savior in Lauri’s Toddler Tote.  The perfect toy to make plane rides, car rides, or restaurant dinners bearable (dare I say enjoyable?) with toddlers and preschoolers.

You Are My Little Bird CD – Elizabeth Mitchell’s intended audience for her folksy album is kids.  Here’s my dirty little secret: I play it for my own benefit!   Bursting with wholesome lyrics, bluegrass roots, and exquisitely arranged songs, Little Bird will have the whole family singing and dancing.

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