When I was a new mum four years ago the first piece of kit I bought was a baby monitor. It looked like a walkie-talkie and crackled if you took it too far out of range. During the first few months though, there really was little point in me having a monitor. I was so anxious about leaving my baby in another room that I practically cellotaped the monitor to my face, before repeatedly checking on her at least every ten minutes.
Fast-forward four years and I’m a new mum again to another baby girl. At the moment during the day this baby tends to sleep on me in her sling, as we’re out and about for the school run and trips to the park with my eldest. She’s now eight weeks old and a couple of weeks ago we passed a pretty big baby milestone: putting baby girl down to bed in the evening.
For the first six weeks baby girl would have a bath with her big sister at bedtime, before being brought downstairs to sleep in the living room. I wanted her near me just so I could gaze at her tiny eyelashes and listen to her sleepy grunts.
A couple of weeks ago though, we noticed that she wasn’t settling properly downstairs any more (SOB – she’s changing too quickly already!). So that’s when we started putting her down to sleep for the night in her moses basket in our room, before going downstairs ourselves.
I won’t lie, the first night I did this I was up and down those stairs every five minutes to check on her. I was gutted to find I didn’t suddenly have legs like Gisele Bundchen after all that stair action. Gradually though I’ve come to trust the Babymoov touch screen monitor and allow myself to get some work done, watch some TV or even have a bath without feeling the need to check on my baby every two minutes.
There’s a huge peace of mind in being able to actually see my baby sleeping as well as listen to her snoring and snuffling. The monitor comes in two parts: a camera and a touch screen. You can add extra cameras to the screen too, if you want to have another angle of the room.
We positioned the camera so that it looks over the moses basket next to our bed – the camera has a handy tilt action so you can move it up or down depending on where your baby is sleeping. It does need to be on a surface nearby though, so this is something to keep in mind. You won’t get a good view if the camera is on the other side of the room, obviously.
The other part of the monitor is the touch screen, which we keep downstairs. Once it’s charged you don’t need to worry about plugging it in. This is particularly handy if you’re moving about downstairs as you can carry the monitor from room to room.
A word of warning – when the battery is running low the monitor beeps to let you know it needs charging. This is very loud! So loud in fact that it woke our sleeping four year old who’s bedroom is above the living room. Lesson learned – make sure you keep the monitor fully charged and plug it in if it’s running low.
The touch screen capacity means it’s incredibly easy to navigate around the monitor, even for a gadget-phobe like me. You can alter the settings, making it louder or quieter, altering how long the display is set to show the camera and you can even play a lullaby through the camera to calm your baby if they wake up.
So how much does this bit of baby gadgetry cost? Well it’s on the upper end of the scale, at £159.99. When I compare this to the £35 we spent on our very first baby monitor four years ago it might seem a bit steep. But when you look at what you actually get for your money it becomes clear that this is more than just a run of the mill monitor.
For me, the security in being able to see my baby sleep really helps me relax about her being in a different room to me during the evening. The house we live in now is a lot bigger than the cottage we used to live in when her older sister was this age. Plus, this baby has a much quieter cry than her big sister did (and has). It means that if she wakes up I wouldn’t necessarily hear her without a monitor – and being able to see her on the screen is helpful to reassure myself she’s sleeping soundly and hasn’t pushed herself too far to the top of her moses basket.
Is it worth the cash? Yes. It really is. For me, I’d be willing to spend that money in return for the ability to relax properly in the evenings and have the peace of mind that I can see my baby as well as hear her.
Disclosure: I’m a Babymoov ambassador. All views expressed in this post remain my own. I was sent this product for the purpose of review.