Bouncers, Swings and Other Hoppy Things

You can’t hold your kid all the time–there are just some things that require the use of your hands. Darn that evolution, phasing out the nifty tails that other primates got to keep! Unless you have unlimited funds and unlimited space in your home, you’re probably wondering what gear is vital and which doodads are just, well, annoying. Here’s what’s what:

Bouncer–not really “hands free”


  • Pro: Easy to move from room to room.
  • Con: Super boring for the kid. It doesn’t actually bounce unless you’re sitting there, bouncing it.  So much for hands free!
And he's down for the count


  • Pro: It swings on its own and often has an entertaining mobile for baby! Fussy babies are often soothed by a swing when nothing else works.
  • Con: Clunky to move from room to room. Goes through batteries like a newborn goes through diapers.

After all that jumping, this happens a lot.


  • Pro: Fun exercise for baby! Also very portable.
  • Con: Not for newborns, only for babies with good head control. Another con: You have to find a doorway or arch to hang it in.
Suspected cause of ADHD

Suspected cause of ADHD

Activity Centers:

  • Pro: Full of fun flashy things.
  • Con: Can barely get the huge monstrosity into the house, much less move it around.

Super boring

Moses Baskets, Cradles, and Bassinets:

  • Pro: Great for napping newborns. Very portable.
  • Con: Super boring. Babies older than two or three months old won’t abide just laying there, they’re going to want something to do!

Conclusion? Buy a swing and a jumper!

 A swing will accommodate a newborn, since it swings it will also lull your lovely child to sleep and it has a mobile for an older baby that wants to look at stuff.  A jumper will keep your baby happy until he or she starts walking–then you’ll really wish you had your tail back.


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