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Making room for baby in a small space? These 9 products do more with less

Want to avoid baby overload in your tiny space? This gear does double duty.

Making room for baby in a small space? These 9 products  do more with less

City mamas get an especially strong solidarity fist bump from us. ? Whether you’re navigating subway stairs or struggling to fit a nursery in a 1-bedroom apartment, there are certain challenges that urban mamas take on every day.


Here are genius 9 small-space products that will get you almost as excited as a Starbucks on every block.

1. When you hit the streets: BABYZEN YOYO+ Stroller

Tricky city streets (and building vestibules), you have met your match. The savvy BABYZEN YOYO+ converts to accommodate either an infant or a toddler, maneuvers like a dream, and folds down to roughly the size of your gym bag—it can even fit in an airplane overhead compartment. And at a mere 13 pounds, you won’t even mind lugging it up subway steps to take your little to the outer boroughs.

Pro tip: Part of what keeps this ride so lightweight is a lack of frills. But for mamas who need to bring a bag and can’t get through a playdate without Starbucks (AKA, all of us), we recommend investing in the cup holder and travel bag.

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2. When you need counter space for the toaster: Boon Grass Drying Rack

When counter space is already at a premium, you want everything that you have to keep on display to at least contribute to a stylish aesthetic. And we haven’t found a cuter way to air dry all those bottle nipples than the Boon Grass Drying Rack. The simple design is the perfect place to dry all baby’s things that you’d rather keep separate from your other dishes.

Pro tip: Still need more drying space? Think up! Pair your Grass with the Boon Stem Accessory.

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3. To wash off that city grit: Puj Tub

While we love infant tubs with bells and whistles, they tend to take up more room than most urban mamas can spare. The Puj Tub is made from soft white foam that folds and conforms to your sink during bath time, and then hangs or store flat when you’re done. Think of it this way: The quicker the cleanup, the faster you get to the snuggling-a-freshly-bathed-baby moment.

Pro tip: If you’re dealing with a seriously small bathroom, opt for the Puj Flyte—it’s so compact, it can fit into a suitcase.

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4. When Grandma wants to check in: Phillips Avent uGrow Smart Baby Monitor

Life moves a little faster in the city, which is why urban mamas will appreciate how quick and easy it is to set up the Philips Avent uGrow Smart Baby Monitor. The clever design lets you (and the baby sitter, and Grandma, etc.) keep an eye on your little using SafeConnect Technology that works across 3G, 4G, and wi-fi—all from your smart phone. It also features lullaby songs, temperature control, a built-in nightlight, a microphone for 2-way convos, and alerts that you can personalize based on noise volume or temperature.

Pro Tip: The design is great for travel as you only have to bring the one device—your phone functions as the monitor.

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5. When your playroom is the corner by your couch: Skip Hop 3-Stage Activity Center

We love the Skip Hop 3-Stage Activity Center for being entertaining without over-stimulating baby (like other activity centers can be—you know what we mean). The construction is solid and the simple toys are engaging, meaning the center can last for YEARS as it moves from baby play space to toddler toy to child's table. It’s also amazingly compact. You know, in case you 2-bedroom has started to feel even smaller lately.

Pro tip: We are total suckers for a product that grows with baby (who has the space for more toys??), and this activity center fits the bill oh-so beautifully.

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6. When you can’t find parking near your apartment: Doona Car Seat

The feeling of knowing you have to carry your heavy car seat and baby six blocks because you can’t find parking? Disheartening. The feeling of knowing you can simply turn your car seat into a stroller and wheel your way anywhere? WINNING. The Doona car seat features integrated wheels that flip down, transforming it into a compact stroller with a 360-turn radius perfect for zipping over city sidewalks. Warning: This all-in-one piece is so amazing, strangers will fawn over it in public.

Pro tip: Practice the folding/unfolding technique without baby inside the seat for the first few times. And definitely spring for the All-Day Bag—so worth it.

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7. When the closest swing is at the park down the block: mamaRoo

Besides offering one of the smallest swing footprints on the market, 4moms’ MamaRoo has a clean, modern look that will blend with your urban aesthetic. The base features a speaker that can connect with your mp3 player (to play jams for baby and you), and the whole swing can be controlled through Bluetooth on an app on your phone.

Pro tip: It’s the perfect swing option for babies that are still sharing a room with mama (hello, one-bedroom apartment!).

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8. When your dining table is a coffee table: Summer Infant Deluxe Comfort Folding Booster Seat

Having a baby doesn’t have to mean giving up dinners out—you just need to come prepared. The folding mechanism of the Summer Infant Deluxe Comfort Folding Booster Seat creates a streamlined, flat design that you can tuck into your stroller’s undercarriage or a large tote bag. It’s perfect for stopping at a friend’s for lunch, navigating restaurants without high chairs, or simply substituting for bulkier high chairs.

Pro tip: The tray is dishwasher safe—hooray for no scrubbing!

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9. When you need one that does it all: Bugaboo Stand

It would be great if you could fit a bassinet, stroller, car seat and high chair into your tiny apartment, but for those of us still trying to find room for an actual dining table (#adultgoals), there’s this nifty little stand. The Bugaboo Stand easily transforms your stroller bassinet into a sleeping solution and your seat into an adjustable high chair—and when folded down, it’s roughly the size of an umbrella.

Pro tip: The stand is compatible with the Bugaboo Cameleon3, Bugaboo Buffalo and Bugaboo Donkey strollers, but you will need to purchase the appropriate adapters for your model.

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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.

$30

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!

$75

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.

$40

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.

$120

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.

$30

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.

$100

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.

$40

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.

$121

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.

$100

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.

$45

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.

$179

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.

$100

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.

$33

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.

$88

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