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Always one to make a dramatic entrance, my kid arrived two weeks late after an emergency C-section, wedged in between twin snowstorms. And I was ready, presiding over a nursery fully stocked with hand-crafted wood rattles, cashmere onesies and cloth diapers.
I quickly learned that babies prefer soft stuff they can gum and chew, cashmere anything is akin to financial dysentery and there’s a reason that roughly 27.4 billion disposable diapers are used each year in this country.
And if you have Amazon Prime, you’ll get free shipping, of course. Not yet a member? No problem. You can sign up for your free 30-day trial here. (And by the way, those without Prime still get free shipping on orders of $25 or more.)
As a mom, convenience is the top consideration when you’re buying stuff for yourself, your house or your child. Bonus points for aesthetics and performance. From adorable hand weights to a powerhouse robovac, are the 10 best items I’ve ever bought at Amazon.
So let’s say there comes a day when, overcome with a weird sense of culinary ambition, you decide to make pesto or salsa or vegetable soup from scratch. You’ll need a food processor. But because you’ll use said food processor twice a month at best, this is the one to get.
It’s tiny enough to sit in a cabinet without attracting unwanted attention, but powerful enough to chop or puree anything. It has what the brand calls a BladeLock system, which is a fancy way of saying that unless the bowl clicks into place, it won’t work. So there’s literally no room for error. Bonus: This little guy is 46 percent off right now.
Shop it: Cuisinart FP-8SV Elemental 8 Cup Food Processor, $100 (was $185), amazon.com
Once upon a time, you could urinate in peace, without a toddler banging on the door. Better yet, you could drink a cup of coffee without a small human knocking it out of your hand.
This isn't a fantasy. It's a reality if you set up what I call an indoor child jail. You can use these outdoors, but honestly, they saved my sanity indoors; your kid has 18.5 square feet of contained space. You unfold the panels, connect them and watch your child play with his soft toys or trucks or puzzles, while you sit nearby and ... read a book.
Shop it: Evenflo Versatile Play Space, $68, amazon.com
Getting kids to stay hydrated is a job onto itself. Which is why you need a great water bottle. What makes it great? It should be easy to open and close, for starters, otherwise the whole point is moot. The bottle should be leakproof, easy to clean (with no weird places for muck to collect), and sized right for small hands.
The Yeti is that bottle. It has a smart straw cap that clicks into place when open or closed, thus preventing spillage in backpacks. And you just run it through the dishwasher. Choose from seven colors.
Shop it: Yeti Rambler Kids' Water Bottle, $30, amazon.com
So yeah, pressure cookers are nothing new, but this one is next level. Why? Because it has a built-in scale. You never knew it mattered, until you didn’t have to either rely on guesswork or measuring cups when you’re dumping in ingredients.
Plus, it does all the thinking for you, thanks to its hundreds of guided recipes. It has four integrated smart sensors that measure ingredients so your sauce is never too dry and your pasta isn’t too soggy. Just download the app, pick a recipe, throw in the ingredients and your work is done.
Shop it: Chef iQ Smart Pressure Cooker, $173 (was $200), amazon.com
This is the Tom Brady, the Lebron James, the Michael Phelps … ok, you get it. I’ll stop. It’s the best robot vacuum I’ve ever used, and yes, I’ve sadly tried them all because between allergies and cats, my son and I are in competition to win the congestion Olympics.
The Shark is half the price of a comparable one that also has a self-emptying base that holds up to 30 days of nastiness. The vacuum is one of the quietest I’ve used (and I’ve used them all), it sucks up cat hair like it’s its job (it is), and you can control it via the app or Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. Plus, it's $100 off right now. Convinced?
Shop it: Shark IQ Robot Vacuum, $450 (was $550), amazon.com
Once upon a time, I wore fancy button-down shirts with collars and waistlines. That went the way of Andrew Cuomo’s reputation. Now, it’s all about looking somewhat human, without terrifying anyone you come into contact with outdoors.
Daily Ritual’s entire line is perfect for the work-from-home ethos but this shirt in particular skims your body, politely glides over any unfortunate bulges, skims your butt, and generally, makes you look put together.
Oh, and you can run it through the dryer on the highest setting and this thing never shrinks or fades.
Shop it: Daily Ritual Women's Jersey, $19.50, amazon.com
Maybe you live near a highway and honking cars are your cross to bear. Or perhaps you have cats who decide to wrestle (and screech at each other) at roughly 2 a.m. every night. Neither scenario is fun and neither makes for quality sleep; what’s even less fun is trying to rouse an exhausted child in the morning.
This tiny wifi-enabled sound machine can help lull him or her to sleep and helps them stay asleep — it plays one of eight soothing sounds, including a clothing dryer or rain. You control it via an app. It’s roughly the size of your palm, so it’s beautifully unobtrusive.
Shop it: Hatch Rest Mini White Noise Smart Sound Machine, $40, amazon.com
Before I shared space with a child who routinely kicks soccer balls at delicate objects, I prided myself on my dinnerware. Specifically, minimalist ceramic plates and bowls that were made in Portugal, using locally-sourced clay.
Today, I have switched to these dishes made of bamboo because to me, it just seems a better choice than plastic. Simply put, they make me happy: They’re bright, they’re unbreakable, they can be used indoors or out, and did I mention that they’re unbreakable?
Shop it: Ekobo Bamboo Plates, $36 for four (was $52), amazon.com
Let’s be clear: Mustela makes products for moms and babies. To which I say: Whatever.
This cream is meant for stretch marks, but it’s so rich (in the best sense) that I use it on my hands, which beg for moisture after I wash them roughly 62 times per day.
It’s made with avocado and shea butter, but all you need to know is that it has a very gentle, subtly summery scent, and leaves your digits buttery soft without feeling greasy.
Shop it: Mustela Maternity Stretch Marks Cream, $22, amazon.com
These look like statement bracelets, but they’re actually chunky one-pound weights you can wear around your wrists or ankles. They're also internet-famous at this point.
Given that I loathe exercising at the best of times, and these aren’t the best of times, I slip these on before my morning walks, grab a coffee and do a quick jaunt around our local park. They’re lightweight enough that you almost forget that you’re wearing them, but solid enough that your arms (or legs) feel like you made them do actual work.
Shop it: Bala Bangles, $49 for two, amazon.com
The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.
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