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Personal Shopper: Baby Gifts Sarah Can Give to Crunchy Mom Friends

Sarah writes, "My friends are starting to popp out babies, and I'm way behind on gifts. Most of my friends are whole-food, green-earth types, and want to provide their babies with that sort of lifestyle. Not being a momma myself, I'm not really sure what to give. I just want it to be super-cool and actually useful to them or the baby!"

Hi, Sarah - you've come to the right place! There were several Outblush babies born over the last year, including my own darling baby girl. I'll get right to the point. Earth-lovin' mamas tend to follow Attachment Parenting guidelines, and get the most use out of things that help them keep their babies close. It may sound like mumbo-jumbo to many non-parents, but understanding a few basic AP fundamentals will help you pick the right gifts for your baby-making friends!

1. Baby Essentials Bundle ($46) A preferred brand of all-natural, gentle baby lotions and soaps, Earth Mama, Baby Angel makes potions and balms for soothing baby during diaper changing and bath time. This essentials kit will have moms prepared to pamper sensitive baby skin.

2. The No-Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley ($11) and The Happiest Baby on the Block ($10) by Dr. Harvey Karp will keep new parents sane during the first few months with their new baby. Seriously, The Happiest Baby on the Block kept my newborn comfortable. The No-Cry Sleep Solution may help your friends establish and keep a good sleep routine, which is worth all the wealth in the world!

3. & 4. Baby Carrier Gift Rental ($flexible) and/or Moby Wrap ($48) There are a few online shops out there that will let moms rent baby carriers. Because they can be expensive, renting is a good way to find the carrier that works best for a mom and baby before she shells out for the commitment. Though if you're not crazy about handing over a gift certificate, a Moby Wrap is almost a sure bet. Most moms find it comfortable and easy to use.

5. Vulli Sophie the Giraffe Teether ($19) The French giraffe has been delighting drooling, teething babies for over fifty years. Sure, she squeaks like a dog toy and collects dirt particles and pet fur every time you set her down, but babies can't resist all of the chewable legs and nubs she offers.

6. Blooming Bath Baby Bath ($47) We like the Blooming Bath so much that we've already reviewed it. It seems much safer to set down your fragile newborn in a soft, squishy flower than to try and wash her in a slippery plastic tub.

7. Braun Thermoscan Ear Thermometer With ExacTemp Technology ($38) Alternative medicine advocates and baby Tylenol believers alike will all agree that a reliable digital thermometer is a MUST. Baby colds and fevers are scary, and your mom friends will want to keep a thermometer close at hand.

8. Sassy Ring O Links ($3) By far the best three dollars I've ever spent. My eight-month-old has been making the best of this ring set since early infancy. Attach a pair to all your gifts!

9. Alphabet & Numbers Wooden Blocks ($43) If your mama friends are dead set against plastic, wooden toys should do the trick. A sweet set of wooden blocks will last for ages.

10. aden + anais Bamboo Muslin Swaddles ($40 for three) Every mom should have a few of these blankets kicking around. They're big and thin, perfect for everything from swaddling and covering up while breast-feeding to cleaning baby spit-up and covering a stroller/infant seat from the elements.

Frustrated in your search for that perfect leather handbag, red stiletto pump, or whatever makes your heart go thump in the night? Click here to check out our requests for you, the reader, and to contact us, and we might do the shopping work for you in a future Personal Shopper feature!

layla-pic.jpgLayla here: At a strapping 5'2", I've got plenty of tricks up my sleeve for fellow petite girls who need to look fashion fabulous. Plus, I make all of my beauty purchases online just so I can get free trial size samples in the mail. If you're not sure about a product, chances are I've tried it! I'd be glad to recommend my favs. I also have a knack for men's apparel and gifts, especially geek guy gifts, thanks to the expertise of my own gadget-inclined guy.

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