The Best Toys for 4 Month Olds

Watching her play in this is basically the highlight of my entire day. Click for a link to my favorite activity center!

Annie B recently made a huge developmental leap! It’s been so fun to watch, and even more fun to play with new toys! We’ve started to retire some of our favorite newborn items. Gone are the days of swaddling and lounging in her swing. Now, she’s all about being 100% stimulated whenever she’s awake. So, we’ve introduced a couple new toys to her lineup.

I’m not crazy about the idea of filling up our house with baby stuff from top to bottom. Before Annie even came into this world, I thought our house was overrun with clutter. As you can imagine, it’s taken a lot of adjustment and deep breathing to allow so many baby gadgets into every corner of our house. I’m trying really hard to be less of a control freak, because so much of being a parent is totally out of my control.

It’s a little sad to see Annie growing out of her favorite itty bitty baby items so soon. I recently did a huge clean out in her nursery and organized all of the clothes she’s grown out of into boxes for the attic (just as an insurance policy in case she has a sister or hopefully a cute little cousin) and reorganized all of her drawers. When I was pregnant, I spent so much time neatly folding all of her little onesies and ordering them by size and color in tiny drawer organizers. It didn’t take long for me to realize what a complete and total waste of time that was. Now, her drawers are organizers with three plastic containers for pajamas, onesies, and pants. I’ve instituted a no-fold policy. What’s the point? She changed five times a day anyway and I usually change my mind about her outfit just as many times.

I’m happy to say that, thanks to a great deal of research, friends and family that have done this before, and a bare essentials mentality, we managed to put everything we received and purchased to good use in Annie’s first few months at home. But there were some things that I’m just sure we couldn’t have done without. Maybe that’s dramatic, but they really did make life so much easier. So, here they are. Hope this helps!

Newborn Essentials for Months 1-3

  1. The Boppy Newborn Lounger. This is #1 in my heart. Truly. I don’t know what I would have done without this thing. It’s the easiest way to dock a newborn wherever you are. It got us through countless loads of laundry, dinners in silence while she was asleep, movie nights, and even bath times. After a good scrubbing, I would cover it with towels and wrap her up so she wouldn’t get chilly. It’s very womb-like. Annie nestled right into it, especially when she was swaddled. And even though it’s not for sleep, it was great for getting her to fall asleep so I could transfer her into her bassinet.
  2. Graco Baby Simple Sway Swing. She still fits in this, but we moved it back into her nursery. It used to be in the living room because we absolutely needed to use it every single day. The rocking motion was a great way to keep her occupied while our hands were full. The only reason we don’t have it in the living room now is because it doesn’t do anything particularly stimulating, so it’s better for calming her down before nap time.
  3. Urbini Omni Plus 3-in-1 Travel System. I’m just in awe of this thing because it is so easy to use, looks just as chic as the more expensive options, and costs less than $200 at Walmart. Seriously. Some travel systems we looked at with all the same options and supplies cost up to $1000. I was so thrilled with it, especially the bassinet stroller option. Once the weather got warm enough for walks, it was a guaranteed way to get Annie to go down for a nap. And it’s so easy to click the car seat into place.

Honorable Mentions

There are so many different options for a sleeping newborn, but we chose to have Annie in a bassinet in our room for at least the first six months. She’s been sleeping in the Chico Lullago Bassinet and loves it. We haven’t need to yet, but I chose this option because it was easy to pack up and take places if you travel often, or if you just want something that collapses when you’re done using it so it doesn’t take up space. For late night diaper changes, this diaper caddy is a must. I always recommend it as my go-to baby shower gift. Every new mama should have one so diaper changes can happen any place, any time without having to run around for supplies.

And even though this is unique to my situation, our Moses basket has been so essential for taking Annie to work with me. It’s pretty enough to sit in the shop without looking like we’ve filled the place up with baby junk. If you just want a prettier option for a bassinet in your master or living room, it also fits these stands available from Amazon.

New Baby Supplies We’re Trying for Our 4 Month Old

Toys and Activities

This activity center was just delivered yesterday and I’m pretty sure we’ve already gotten our money’s worth out of it. I would buy it over and over again just to see the look on Annie’s face when I first put her in the seat. She loves the spinning toy with all the beads in it. Now that she can hold her head up on her own, I’m all about watching her play with interactive toys. It’s the best entertainment! And I really don’t mind having this in the place where the swing was because the design is so cute. I really kind of hate myself for talking about Annie’s toys as if they’re junk taking up space in my home. But let’s be real – baby stuff is usually designed to be the loudest, ugliest possible.

We’re upping our tummy time, and that comes with challenges when your baby suddenly wants to be stimulated all the time. Since she can’t see as much when she’s on her belly, this Bright Stars Tummy Time Mat helps her stay engaged and interested, plus it props her up so she can still use her arms and hands to knock toys around. I love when she catches a glimpse of herself in the mirror. She always looks like she’s saying, “Oh, wow. I look good.”

Baby Seats

To replace the Newborn Lounger that we used the absolute hell out of, we now have the Bumbo seat, which is the cutest. I did ask a chiropractor about it, who told me that most doctors don’t recommend using the seat as a means of teaching your child to sit up. Every morning, we practice sitting up on our own – I hold her hands and she sits on my lap to build up strength and get her balance right. We just use this seat to dock her while I’m making my morning coffee or getting dressed.

She loves to watch us eat, and I’m so glad she can fit in her table chair. It attaches to the end of our dining room table and she gets buckled right in. This does less to support her, so she has to do more of the work herself, unlike the Bumbo.

Baby Tech

One of the biggest changes that came with this developmental leap is that she needs a very specific nap environment. Something as little as a pretty pattern on a rug or a ceiling fan can distract her enough that she can’t sleep. So, most naps are now taken in her nursery, where I can shut the blinds and curtains and really control the environment for longer, uninterrupted naps. And with that comes the need for a baby monitor. We chose this one from Infant Optics because it was cost effective and didn’t work over the phone. Wifi baby monitors are all the rage these days, but a lot of work takes place on my phone and I didn’t like the idea of having to stay on the app for her entire nap if I wanted to see her.


And finally, the greatest swaddle of all time! Okay, so she’s not being swaddled like she used to when she was itty bitty. But it’s getting to be summer time in Eastern NC, and it’s way too hot for heavy blankets. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that our Loulou Lollipop blanket goes everywhere. It block the sun when we’re out for a walk, it’s her go-to nap blanket, and it gets softer every time you wash it. I wish they made these things for grownups.

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becs lynk

there's a first time for everything, and I share those firsts here every week. to chat one on one, follow me on Instagram @becs.lynk

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