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Charlene's French Baby Registry

Charlene shares all the essentials she wants for her French babies.

Charlene's French Baby Registry

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For the past nine months, I’ve longed for all sorts of things that are reminiscent of my childhood in France. And so here I am, pregnant with baby number 2, re-re-re-reading Le Petit Prince, trying to nail the whole French-girl look by sporting way too many striped shirts under my maternity jumpsuits, and craving all the French food -- croissants, stinky cheeses, charcuterie, pâté, profiteroles, champagne, snails… ok, not snails, but you get the gist. My pregnancy craving is France, and it has me filled with nostalgia.

So it comes with no surprise that when I was putting my baby registry together, I ended up picking the kind of stuff that, yes, I thought were essential, but that also had that “je ne sais quoi” taking me back to my good old “young” days in Paris, when things were comfortable and worry free.

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Curious to see what I, as a French mama and expat, want for my French babies? From the quintessential Sophie La Girafe to baby moccs named after my grandfather, here are 15 baby essentials that make me swoon (and dream of a vacation in my beautiful home country).

1. Babyzen Yoyo+ stroller. Speaking of vacay… The Yoyo+ has made traveling with my firstborn a breeze. This stroller, which was imagined by a group of five Frenchmen, is small but can really pack a punch. It folds in a jiffy and is so compact that it fits in the plane’s overhead bin -- au revoir stroller gate check! And now that big brother can hop on Babyzen’s newly launched board, I can’t wait to conquer the streets of Paris once more, this time with two little ones in tow. I know I've been in the US a while, but the Yoyo+ is literally on every corner of Paris, so I’ll fit right in. $645, buy here.

2. Bloom Alma Mini crib. Much like New Yorkers and other city dwellers, many Parisians have to figure out how to make their small homes livable, happy and, well, stylish -- a task that can be especially tricky if you have children crowding all your cozy quarters. Now that baby number 2 is on his way, I have to make the most of my two-bedroom apartment, which means prioritizing baby gear with the smallest footprint possible. That’s why Bloom’s Alma Mini is at the top of my registry list. It's the smallest mini crib on the market, but can still be used for the first 12 months of my little one’s life; its four lockable castor wheels give me the freedom to move baby at will and with ease; and I can fold and stash it away in a closet corner when not in use. Plus, with its super sleek design, my baby’s tiny universe is sure to be bursting at the seam with style! $340, buy here.

3. Solly Baby French Stripes wrap. From Coco Chanel to Jean-Paul Gaultier, stripes are a staple of French fashion; and this Solly Baby design, which has a natural base and thin navy blue lines, is a modern take on this emblematic nautical aesthetic. Not only will it give me French-cool-girl vibes, it will also be a nice reminder of all the coastal shops in Normandy, where I used to summer. So excuse me while I layer my stripes with more stripes -- can we ever have enough stripes, really? $60, buy here.

4. Noble Carriage French Frog baby gift. What screams “French” more than a frog, a croissant and stripes (again)? This bundle from Noble Carriage truly has everything my baby-to-be needs to let the world know that he's French: Lewis the French toad by Hazel Village, a white onesie by Goat-Milk, striped leggings by Hansel from Basel, and a croissant teether from LexyPexy. Although, I can’t guarantee I won’t be munching on that croissant myself. *hashtag French mama’s hungry* $121, buy here.

5. Beaba Babycook. When my oldest started eating solids, I was so excited to finally give homemade baby cooking a try. So for the first year or so, I made all of his meals from scratch. But it turned out, I wasn't equipped for the task. Sure, my trusty food processor was great, but it took way too much space and was always a pain to clean. Enters the Beaba Babycook, an all-in-one baby food maker that steams, blends and reheats your little one’s foods -- from fruits and veggies to meats and fish -- in 15 minutes or less. With a sleek design, this one-stop-shop baby food processor earns a prime spot on your kitchen counter and will save you time and space -- two things that you most definitely need more of as a mama. $149.95, buy here.

6. Maptote Paris wall hanging. When I’m homesick, I usually look at old family pictures and imagine myself perusing the streets of Paris while devouring a Nutella crêpe on the go. But another way I beat nostalgia is by decorating my home with bits and pieces from the places I love. This Maptote Paris wall hanging is the perfect addition to my French baby’s nursery. Its minimalist design keeps it cool as it showcases the most emblematic monuments of Paris. Plus, it will let me and my little one travel through the different quarters of my hometown. Oh hey… Here I am again, wandering the Quartier Latin, eating my crêpe and trying not to drop Nutella all over baby’s head. $26, buy here.

7. Petit Bateau onesies. Petit Bateau is zee French baby brand that all French babies should wear at some point in their French baby lives. Case and point: My brother and I sported the brand on the daily, and thanks to my relatives in France, my firstborn had a lot of it too. It goes without saying that I expect my family to keep up with the tradition and dress bébé-to-be with lots of Petit Bateau’s signature prints, which, you guess it, involve a lot of sailboats and stripes (duh!). $75, buy here.

8. Sophie La Girafe. I remember snatching this French classic from my little brother’s hands because, “it’s mine,” I kept asserting. Indeed, my parents passed Sophie La Girafe onto my brother once they thought I outgrew it. Little did they know that I would be forever charmed by this quirky, retro teething toy. Major plus: it’s made from natural rubber and non-toxic coloring. $24.99, buy here.

9. Freshly Picked Jacques moccasins. I know, I know -- one more item with stripes. But these moccs are extra special. It’s not just that they are inspired by nautical French textiles. They actually share my grandfather’s name, Jacques. Papi Jacques took me ski in the Alpes and swim in Normandy; he unfailingly convinced me to eat those yogurts with fruit bits that I hated so much; and he sadly left us way too soon, just before I turned six years old. No question about it, these Freshly Picked moccasins won my heart and therefore a special spot in my little one’s wardrobe. $60, buy here.

10. Le Petit Prince pop-up book. Everybody knows -- Le Petit Prince is a classic for kids and adults alike, and I lost count of how many times I’ve read this book. I honestly can’t wait to share this whimsical story (in French, of course) with my children. This pop-up book is going to make it extra fun, as it brings the illustration to life with unabridged text and folding, popping and spinning surprises on every page. $38, buy here.

11. Uncle Goose French ABC blocks. “Ça y est, je les connais, toutes les lettres de l’alphabet.” I got these wooden blocks for my firstborn, and they passed the test of time. Simply put, they are still a hit and are thus, in my opinion, a registry essential for all French parents who want their kids to explore their knowledge of the French language early on. $36.95, buy here.

12. French Kids Eat Everything. Unfortunately, my French kid doesn’t eat everything. Arthur tends to go for bread and croissant over cauliflower and broccoli. So this time around, I’m determined to raise a healthy and happy eater; and if this book can help me put an end to food fights and pickiness, well, I’ll take it! Give me all the tips and recipes -- I’m ready to feed my littles, à la French. $9, buy here.

13. Charlie Crane changing station. Do you have a shortage of square footage? If so, forget about the full-size changing table. This hangable changing station, which I can proudly say is a French invention, is a dream come true. Not only will it save you tons of space, it also opens into a comfortable nappy station that allows you to also access all your baby care products without losing sight of your child. $479, buy here.

14. Babymoov zero emission camera. We didn’t use a monitor right away with our firstborn. That’s because we kept him by our side at all times. This time around, I plan on giving everyone a little more freedom, but I still want to keep an eye on baby when he’s snoozing. With this Babymoov baby video monitor, you can do just that without the potentially harmful electromagnetic waves making their way into baby’s bedroom. Plus, the zero emission camera plays lullabies for baby and can also serve as a nightlight. $199, buy here.

15. Miam Miam subscription box. I know new mamas need nutritious foods to recover from birth as fast as possible. But the heart wants what it wants, and right now, my heart… err, belly wants a yummy trip down memory lane. So send a MiamMiam’s subscription box my way… I’ll be one happy mama, chomping on Bonne Maman lemon tarts, Fraises tagada and Prince tout choco… with bubbly in hand, of course, because, hey, I just made a baby! Learn more here.

Want to win a couple of goodies from this list? Head over to our Instagram right now!

Homepage photography by Stylish Hip Kids Photography.

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By its very nature, motherhood requires some lifestyle adjustments: Instead of staying up late with friends, you get up early for snuggles with your baby. Instead of spontaneous date nights with your honey, you take afternoon family strolls with your little love. Instead of running out of the house with just your keys and phone, you only leave with a fully loaded diaper bag.

For breastfeeding or pumping mamas, there is an additional layer of consideration around when, how and how much your baby will eat. Thankfully, when it comes to effective solutions for nursing or bottle-feeding your baby, Dr. Brown's puts the considerations of mamas and their babies first with products that help with every step of the process—from comfortably adjusting to nursing your newborn to introducing a bottle to efficiently pumping.

With countless hours spent breastfeeding, pumping and bottle-feeding, the editors at Motherly know the secret to success is having dependable supplies that can help you feed your baby in a way that matches lifestyle.

Here are 9 breastfeeding and pumping products to help you no matter what the day holds.

Customflow™ Double Electric Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's electric pump

For efficient, productive pumping sessions, a double electric breast pump will help you get the job done as quickly as possible. Quiet for nighttime pumping sessions and compact for bringing along to work, this double pump puts you in control with fully adjustable settings.

$159.99

Hands-Free Pumping Bra

Dr. Brown''s hands free pumping bra

Especially in the early days, feeding your baby can feel like a pretty consuming task. A hands-free pumping bra will help you reclaim some of your precious time while pumping—and all mamas will know just how valuable more time can be!

$29.99

Manual Breast Pump with SoftShape™ Silicone Shield

Dr. Brown's manual breast pump

If you live a life that sometimes takes you away from electrical outlets (that's most of us!), then you'll absolutely want a manual breast pump in your arsenal. With two pumping modes to promote efficient milk expression and a comfort-fitted shield, a manual pump is simply the most convenient pump to take along and use. Although it may not get as much glory as an electric pump, we really appreciate how quick and easy this manual pump is to use—and how liberating it is not to stress about finding a power supply.

$29.99

Nipple Shields and Sterilization Case

Dr. Brown's nipple shields

There is a bit of a learning curve to breastfeeding—for both mamas and babies. Thankfully, even if there are some physical challenges (like inverted nipples or a baby's tongue tie) or nursing doesn't click right away, silicone nipple shields can be a huge help. With a convenient carry case that can be sterilized in the microwave, you don't have to worry about germs or bacteria either. 🙌

$9.99

Silicone One-Piece Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's silicone pump

When you are feeding your baby on one breast, the other can still experience milk letdown—which means it's a golden opportunity to save some additional milk. With a silent, hands-free silicone pump, you can easily collect milk while nursing.

$14.99

Breast to Bottle Pump & Store Feeding Set

After a lifetime of nursing from the breast, introducing a bottle can be a bit of a strange experience for babies. Dr. Brown's Options+™ and slow flow bottle nipples were designed with this in mind to make the introduction to bottles smooth and pleasant for parents and babies. As a set that seamlessly works together from pumping to storing milk to bottle feeding, you don't have to stress about having everything you need to keep your baby fed and happy either.

$24.99

Washable Breast Pads

washable breast pads

Mamas' bodies are amazingly made to help breast milk flow when it's in demand—but occasionally also at other times. Especially as your supply is establishing or your breasts are fuller as the length between feeding sessions increase, it's helpful to use washable nursing pads to prevent breast milk from leaking through your bra.

$8.99

Breast Milk Storage Bags

Dr. Brown's milk storage bags

The essential for mamas who do any pumping, breast milk storage bags allow you to easily and safely seal expressed milk in the refrigerator or freezer. Dr. Brown's™ Breast Milk Storage Bags take it even further with extra thick walls that block out scents from other food items and feature an ultra secure lock to prevent leaking.

$7.99


Watch one mama's review of the new Dr. Brown's breastfeeding line here:

This article was sponsored by Dr. Brown's. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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Time-saving formula tips our editors swear by

Less time making bottles, more time snuggling.

As a new parent, it can feel like feeding your baby is a full-time job—with a very demanding nightshift. Add in the additional steps it takes to prepare a bottle of formula and, well… we don't blame you if you're eager to save some time when you can. After all, that means more time for snuggling your baby or practicing your own well-deserved self-care.

Here's the upside: Many, many formula-feeding mamas before you have experienced the same thing, and they've developed some excellent tricks that can help you mix up a bottle in record time. Here are the best time-saving formula tips from editors here at Motherly.

1. Use room temperature water

The top suggestion that came up time and time again was to introduce bottles with room temperature water from the beginning. That way, you can make a bottle whenever you need it without worrying about warming up water—which is a total lifesaver when you have to make a bottle on the go or in the middle of the night.

2. Buy online to save shopping time

You'll need a lot of formula throughout the first year and beyond—so finding a brand like Comforts, which offers high-quality infant formula at lower prices, will help you save a substantial amount of money. Not to mention, you can order online or find the formula on shelves during your standard shopping trip—and that'll save you so much time and effort as well.

3. Pre-measure nighttime bottles

The middle of the night is the last time you'll want to spend precious minutes mixing up a bottle. Instead, our editors suggest measuring out the correct amount of powder formula into a bottle and putting the necessary portion of water on your bedside table. That way, all you have to do is roll over and combine the water and formula in the bottle before feeding your baby. Sounds so much better than hiking all the way to the kitchen and back at 3 am, right?

4. Divide serving sizes for outings

Before leaving the house with your baby, divvy up any portions of formula and water that you may need during your outing. Then, when your baby is hungry, just combine the pre-measured water and powder serving in the bottle. Our editors confirm this is much easier than trying to portion out the right amount of water or formula while riding in the car.

5. Memorize the mental math

Soon enough, you'll be able to prepare a bottle in your sleep. But, especially in the beginning or when increasing your baby's serving, the mental math can take a bit of time. If #mombrain makes it tough to commit the measurements to memory, write up a cheat sheet for yourself or anyone else who will prepare your baby's bottle.

6. Warm up chilled formula with water

If you're the savvy kind of mom who prepares and refrigerates bottles for the day in advance, you'll probably want to bring it up to room temperature before serving. Rather than purchase a bottle warmer, our editors say the old-fashioned method works incredibly well: Just plunge the sealed bottle in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes and—voila!—it's ready to serve.



Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on Comfortsforbaby.com to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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Chrissy Teigen/Instagram

When Chrissy Teigen announced her third pregnancy earlier this year we were so happy for her and now our hearts are with her as she is going through a pain that is unimaginable for many, but one that so many other mothers know.

Halfway through a high-risk pregnancy complicated by placenta issues, Teigen announced late Wednesday that she has suffered a pregnancy loss.

Our deepest condolences go out to Chrissy and her husband, John Legend (who has been by her side in the hospital for several days now).

In a social media post, Teigen explained she named this baby Jack.

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"We are shocked and in the kind of deep pain you only hear about, the kind of pain we've never felt before. We were never able to stop the bleeding and give our baby the fluids he needed, despite bags and bags of blood transfusions. It just wasn't enough," she wrote.

She continued: "We never decide on our babies' names until the last possible moment after they're born, just before we leave the hospital. But we, for some reason, had started to call this little guy in my belly Jack. So he will always be Jack to us. Jack worked so hard to be a part of our little family, and he will be, forever."

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