The Perfect Piece of Portable Gear You Need for Your Toddler

portable playardYou guys remember how I used to put Gwen in the “Gwen pen” at the gym so that I could (baby gods willing) work out? Well, I’ve found a much better way. Like, a life-changing way. And it’s good for the gym, yes, but also awesome for SO. MUCH. MORE.

The Summer Infant Pop ‘N Play Portable Playard is one of those items that I wish I knew about months ago. Summer Infant sent me the portable playard for free to review, but it’s an item I’m going to be getting for all the new moms I know. Well worth the $79.99 price tag. Heck, I may even buy an extra one to keep at the gym. I love it that much, guys.

Summer Infant Pop ‘N Play Portable Playard Review

And here’s why: it really is ridiculously simple to set up and break down. And not, like, in the way most products say it is. It REALLY is. I liken it to setting up a tailgate chair. Where you just take it out of its cover and open it up. It’s basically like that. The portable playard pops open, you pull straps over the corners and you are done. Then, once you’re finishing using it, you unstrap the corners, and it folds up into a convenient travel bag that even has a strap so you can throw it over your shoulder. It weighs 12 pounds and in the travel bag is just a little bit larger than a yoga mat. Totally easy to take with you wherever you go: vacation, play date, gym, family or friend’s house, beach, park … the options are limitless!

And although Gwen was a little “er, what is this contraption and why am I in it?” at first …

summer-infant-portable-play-yard-gwen-unsure

Within just a few minutes and with the help of her fave toys and snacks, she was digging her new gym digs.

summer-infant-portable-play-yard-bubbles
Don’t worry; there’s no solution in that bubble container.

I love how — unlike a traditional Pack ‘n Play — she can totally see what’s going on and is safe from the action, but not entirely removed from it. I think this was key for her actually enjoying her time in it. Also, it has a weather-resistant canvas floor that is easy to clean up (thanks, crayons) and can be used indoors and outdoors. We’ve yet to try it outdoors, but plan to soon.

Summer Infant LIV Cam Review

Summer Infant also sent me the LIV Cam to try out. And, like the portable playard I was pumped to try it. We were going on a family vacation up to see some friends in Wisconsin and didn’t want to drag our full baby monitor system up there (car space, oye). So this travel-friendly option seemed like the perfect fit.

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The cam works without WiFi or cellular service, indoors and out. Via an app, it streams live video and audio (no data charges) directly to your smart phone. Which is really cool! And the camera itself has a suction and a strap, so it can be placed pretty much anywhere your travels take you and your babe.

summer-infant-liv-cam

And the set-up really was easy, and the app really was cool. Except it only worked on my husband’s Samsung and the night vision was … lacking. Like, we pretty much only used the audio it was so poor quality. The camera and app have other cool features like a one-minute replay to see and share baby’s cute and funny moments. Which is fun, but I still wish the camera quality itself was better. When I’m in a new place and so is my daughter, I want to be able to see what the heck she’s doing, ya know? Fit Bottomed (Mama) line: For $99.99, I’d go ahead and save your money and just bring your regular baby monitor with you.

But that portable playard? GET ONE. —Jenn

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