6 Ways to Record Baby’s First Year

Mark every milestone with one of these cool ideas.

6 Ways to Record Baby’s First Year
As a Mama of two young toddlers and a third baby on the way, I am all about new, modern and easy ways to record those momentous milestones of your baby’s first year and beyond. Let’s be honest, the first baby gets most of the memories recorded (um, hello, I dedicated an entire year + to blogging about my pregnancy and first year with my daughter!) Sure, keeping up with monthly milestones is a time consuming task, especially with a newborn occupying all of your attention. But the work you put in is oh-so-worth-it when you sit down a year from now and reminisce on those early days! Make your job a little easier with one of these 6 smart milestone recorder options.
  1. Recently Photobook App. The folks over at Recently have figured out a pretty genius way to help busy parents get the photos and memories off our phones and into a book. Rather, a high quality magazine printed on premium heavy stock that displays your photos beautifully from the past month! The app is insanely easy and quick to use, even sending reminders when it’s time to choose the photos you want to use and publish to your monthly book. At the end of your baby’s first year you are going to have beautiful memories and not have to worry about sitting down to go through thousands of photos to pick which ones go into that baby book! Price: $8.99/Month. Buy it here.
  1. Milestone Cards. A modern, timesaving take on yesterday’s photo albums to catalog cherished moments? Keepsake Milestone Cards. Grab a card to mark that special moment, like the first night your little one slept through the night, dressed themselves or said "Mama" (sigh). You can mark the date to the line listed on the card and easily add to scrapbooks. Then later you can reminisce about all of those moments, even when baby’s not so sweet anymore. Price: $24. Buy it here.
  1. Batz Kids Milestone Blanket. We’ve seen some adorable swaddle blankets come out of the woodworks lately but there’s one that has struck my interest - this milestone blanket from Batz Kids. It makes sense since it was inspired by a mama herself! Not only is a unique way to record your baby’s age or a special holiday BUT it’s also one of the easiest ways to photograph! Baby just has to lay there and look as cute as they are. I love that we can use it for a blanket, keepsake, or even a special lovey as the baby gets older. Price: $33. Buy it here.
  1. A Mother’s Memory Journal. For those of us that want to keep it classic and hand write all the memories, this new baby book from illustrator Samantha Hahn is as beautiful as it gets. Stories for My Child: A Mother's Memory Journal has ample space to record everything baby, as well as spots for mama’s thoughts and experiences. A bound-in envelope can hold a special letter from mama that baby can read many, many years from now. Price: $16.95 Buy it here.
  1. Blinkbuggy Milestone Poster. Blinkbuggy has developed a line of custom designed posters that are meant to celebrate your baby's most important information (i.e. milestones & stats) in a way that's both visually beautiful & fun! The process is quite simple: just select and purchase a design, fill out a short form with baby’s info and recieve your custom-designed infographic as a high-res jpg to print or share! Price: $5-$10 depending on graphic. Buy it here.
  1. Pearhead Monthly Stickers. We’ve seen the belly Milestone stickers before, but Pearhead is making them extra special and cute! Their stickers range from felt monthly animal stickers to important milestone moments. Put the sticker on a plain white onesie, snap a photo and share away! They make adorable gifts for baby showers too.Price: $19.95. Buy it here.


14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.


Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!


Detective set

Plan Toys detective setDetective Set

This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.


Wooden doll stroller

Janod wooden doll strollerWooden Doll Stroller

Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.


Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.


Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.


Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.


Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.


Wooden rocking pegasus

plan toys wooden rocking pegasus

Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.


Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.


Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.


Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.


Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.


Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


Every week, we stock the Motherly Shop with innovative and fresh products from brands we feel good about. We want to be certain you don't miss anything, so to keep you in the loop, we're providing a cheat sheet.

So, what's new this week?

Meri Meri: Decor and gifts that bring the wonder of childhood to life

We could not be more excited to bring the magic of Meri Meri to the Motherly Shop. For over 30 years, their playful line of party products, decorations, children's toys and stationery have brought magic to celebrations and spaces all over the world. Staring as a kitchen table endeavor with some scissors, pens and glitter in Los Angeles in 1985, Meri Meri (founder Meredithe Stuart-Smith's childhood nickname) has evolved from a little network of mamas working from home to a team of 200 dreaming up beautiful, well-crafted products that make any day feel special.

We've stocked The Motherly Shop with everything from Halloween must-haves to instant-heirloom gifts kiddos will adore. Whether you're throwing a party or just trying to make the everyday feel a little more special, we've got you covered.

Not sure where to start? Here's what we're adding to our cart:

Keep reading Show less

My 3-year-old is eating peanut butter toast with banana for breakfast (his request), and we are officially running late for preschool. We need to get in the car soon if we want to miss the morning traffic, but he has decided that he no longer wants the food that he begged for two minutes earlier. What started off as a relatively calm breakfast has turned into a battle of wills.

"You're going to be hungry," I say, realizing immediately that he could care less. I can feel my frustration rising, and even though I'm trying to stay calm, I'm getting snappy and irritable. In hindsight, I can see so many opportunities that fell through the cracks to salvage this morning, but at the moment… there was nothing.

Keep reading Show less