A new thing in our house is a baby that likes to tangle himself up like a pretzel in his crib – resulting in obscure yoga like positions requiring mommy or daddy to save him. It happens every night and morning. He is just learning to sit and cannot do it for long so the fear of a climber is not here yet – but a yoga baby, I was not expecting.
We have a decent audio monitor that has done us well for the past seven months. But as a tech savvy mom – I wanted more. Yes, I’m still frugal and yes I still coupon the crap out of my shopping trips – but a video feed just seems to make sense. Besides, nothing is more relaxing than being able to check in with your little yoga master digitally without waking him up with your cracking bones and loud footsteps (I’m only 30 but wow am I creaky).
So off I went last week, baby in tow, to Babiesrus to check out their selection of baby video monitors. They had a lot to choose from and as a newbie in the monitor zone, I was completely overwhelmed. So I went to my trusty side kick, Google. Together, with the world’s most patient baby, I stood their analyzing all of the feedback and reviews for several of the cheaper models of monitors. Twenty minutes later I determined that everyone hated and loved EVERY monitor available. No monitor had consistently positive reviews. I am aware of the variances in housing styles which could affect the efficiency of each models range and quality, but to be frank – everyone was quite miserable about each model reviewed.
What would I do?
Well being a frugal lady, I went for a cheaper model. I took home (The First Years – Crisp and Clear) model. It was on sale for half price. Normally $90.00, it was down to $45.00. So off we went, home for the first night of project baby monitor.
The video was clear, the audio was decent – it seemed promising. Until the lights went out. Yes, it had night vision – but the night vision was so unclear about whether to be on or off that it switched back and forth every five seconds. Needless to say, it was useless. I took it back the following day and purchased the next model in my experiment – a V-tech video monitor. At home we turned it on and noticed immediately that the screen was not clear and that there was little chance of seeing past the creepy beady black eyes that it gave my baby. But we persisted and waited until night to give the final assessment. Night vision worked, horror movie eyes aside, however it went to sleep. And it was a medically induced sleep – nothing triggered that monitor to turn on, even baby screams.
So back we went to return the failed monitor. As I was receiving my refund the lady looked at it then me and stated that it had such positive reviews. This baffled me. I was online and knew that it did not in fact have a host of positive reviews.
I quickly resigned to the fact that I was not going to get anything decent by being cheap – BUT that went against all of my rules about money. I hate money stereotypes. There is no good reason why a cheaper model shouldn’t “work” as well as a higher priced model. Having a baby isn’t expensive – it’s the traps that are set in place by retailers who prey on a parent’s desire to have a decent, ‘working’ product.
So I went home empty handed to re-ponder a solution. If we get one at all, it won’t be from a baby store. Thank goodness for techy dads. My dad suggested a d-link monitor that I can connect wirelessly in my home to my smart phone. Why didn’t I think of that?!
I will put up a post once it is purchased and hooked up. I am hopeful that it will work as there is nothing “baby” imprinted on the label – so surely it must be priced reasonably.