As a doula, especially in my postpartum role, I'm pretty up to speed on most of the gadgets out there that are meant to make your life as a new parent easier. Friends and clients are regularly asking me what they should splurge on, what to buy secondhand, and what to skip all together. When I was pregnant with Linden I remember a friend telling me not to waste my dollars on a video monitor - that an audio-only one would do just fine. I didn't act on any monitors until after Linden was here, mainly because I knew we'd be cosleeping for the first little while. Of course this absolutely did not stop my overly anxious mind from being riddled with every scary scenario in the book. Anyone who has been a first time mom knows just how terrifying it can be to just function while saddled with those worries. Once Linden was out of our bed and into his own space, I opted to buy a monitor that would alert me if he stopped breathing for more than 3 seconds - it laid under his crib mattress and it had audio-only speakers. That particular monitor definitely helped me feel a little bit better, but I would find myself having to constantly tiptoe back to his room to see if he was asleep or not, and I still worried about it not working properly - Postpartum anxiety is real and frustrating and exhausting. After a few failed attempts at being sly when checking on L, I sought out to buy a video monitor.
After poking around online and in a couple stores, we ended up with a one-camera Wi-Fi system that we set up in Linden's nursery. The wi-fi capabilities allowed us to view the feed from our phones in addition to the LCD display. All of this was before I had read all about wi-fi baby monitors could be hacked into and ours allowed us to talk back through the camera sooo you can imagine the level of anxiety that came with that realization...) - Sidenote: Levana's monitors use ClearVu digital wireless technology (which if you're like me and shrugging your shoulders with a blank stare, that means it's digitally secure and can't be hacked). Overall we were very happy with our video monitor, but after less than a year, the app stopped working on our phones and there was no way to fix it that we could find. The monitor was used less and less, despite working otherwise, until I just recently packed it up and gave it to a friend who was looking for one. Now that Linden is sneaking up on 2.5 years old, I was really starting to miss having a video monitor. He's been climbing up and down to the top bunk of the bed for almost a year now... yep, that little daredevil. And being one adult in a household with two children, two dogs, and a whole lot of work means that I could really use another set of eyes. Guess who got another video monitor? Yep, this girl.
I opened my inbox to an email about this Levana campaign for their new line of baby monitors and even though I'm sure you're all sick of sponsored content, especially around the holidays, I couldn't sign on fast enough. I was mainly stoked that the Levana Willow system came with two cameras and the touchscreen display was huge! Like, 5 inches huge. Once the monitors got here I set them up in all of 5 minutes - and most of that time was spent moving furniture to get to the outlets haha! I actually threw away the instructions by mistake but it couldn't have been more simple to setup. I also like that can just grab any of the cameras and pop it up in a different room - no additional attention needed. I ended up putting one in the boys' room and then one in the living room for the time being. The living room one tends to migrate depending on where I am in the house and where Linden is. He likes to watch tv in my bed so I regularly move it to my room in hopes this might help prevent any future Febreze incidents (Did you hear about that one? He sprayed almost an entire bottle on my bed... mhm. One spray at a time... all while I thought he was asleep. He was totally silent. Video monitors, people!)
The Levana tagline kind of makes me chuckle a little - "Do More Knowing Your Child Is Safe" - well, to be honest, right now I don't worry so much about Linden being safe, but more so Toby at the hands of Linden. Linden is at that stage where he's defiant and sometimes a little rough. He's finding his place in the sibling hierarchy (and I'm getting a crash course on what it's like to have a sibling at all). So it's more like I have a camera on Linden in order to keep Toby safe haha! But to be honest, it really does allow me to do more. The other day when it was a solid 74 degrees out (followed by a high of 31 the next day...), I took advantage of Linden and Toby playing games on the iPad to hop outside and take care of the leaves on the deck. When Linden was napping yesterday, I toted the display with me to the neighbor's front porch and had a cup of coffee. The neighbor's house is literally right there, but I was actually shocked that it worked at that distance - only because our original one would cut out halfway through the yard. Last night I even wrapped Christmas presents knowing I wouldn't have to listen for tiny footsteps along the hall - I could see they were both tucked into bed (see the video above!). It allows me to be productive, and it allows me to relax. I'm sure you've noticed I don't really have anything negative to say about it haha! I try really hard to be very objective, especially for sponsored posts, because what good is a review if it's not honest? I really can't find anything I don't like about this system - I mean, if I had to find something, it'd just be the cording from the cameras - it's not noticeable if on a shelf or something, but cords hanging down walls always bug me. Totally minor, right? Grasping at straws here.
If you're not sold yet then just know that Levana actually launched the very first wireless, handheld baby monitor in 2002, and they exclusively manufacture baby monitors, so they know what they're doing. The battery on my display lasts forever. I'm really bad about not charging things on the regular, and I usually only have to charge my display like twice a week. The system also includes temperature sensors, feeding timers, built in lullabies, and a super simple navigation. I'm a big ol' fan and I think you should totally enter the giveaway below and check out Levana on Facebook. Even if you don't have kids - you can watch your dogs or cats or spouse - whatever haha!
Moral of the story: If you've got a baby on the way or a toddler of you own, go for the video monitor. As a doula and as a mom, I stand behind these things. Even though our original one didn't last as long as I would have liked, I still think it was one of our very best purchases. I can't wait to see how this one stands up with the test of time.a Rafflecopter giveaway
PS; Wanna see a silly video? The Diaper Change video is prettttttty cuuuute.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Levana. The opinions and text are all mine.