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Best new baby gear of 2012

Maria Mora is a freelance writer and single mom fueled by coffee, questionable time management skills, toaster oven waffles and the color orange. She lives in Florida with her two young sons. If you see her on Twitter, tell her to stop p...

The hottest baby gear this year

Modern baby gear makes the daily tasks of parenting a little bit easier. These top picks from 2012 will make you wonder how anyone ever got by without them. Add these to your list of must-have baby gear and gadgets.

Quinny Zapp Xtra stroller

Quinny Zapp Xtra stroller

Moms who want to use a lightweight stroller and an infant carrier have very little to choose from. The Quinny Zapp Xtra (buybuybaby.com, $300) is a lightweight stroller that folds to nearly nothing and works from newborns to kids up to 50 pounds. Unlike most lightweight strollers, the seat can be used forward or rear-facing and fully reclines either way. As an added bonus, it can be used with the popular Maxi-Cosi infant seat. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come with a cup holder, but you can buy one as an add-on.

Beaba Pro 2X baby food maker

Beaba Pro 2X baby food maker

If you want to make your own baby food, nothing makes it easier than this innovative kitchen appliance. The newest version of the popular Beaba Babycook (williams-sonoma.com, $200) steams, blends and reheats baby food in 15 minutes or less. You can make over nine cups of baby food at a time, using your own fresh ingredients and fruit and vegetable blends. The system allows you to control consistency, making this an appliance that will take you from the earliest solids through toddler days.

Light up Baby's room with portable nightlights in the nursery >>

Beco Gemini baby carrier

Beco Gemini baby carrier

Designed by a mom who wanted to make babywearing comfortable and stylish, Beco baby carriers are ergonomic and ultra easy to use. The new Beco Gemini (becobabycarrier.com, $130) distributes weight for maximum comfort and features quality fabric in unique designs that stand out from your standard black and tan baby carriers. Made in the U.S., Beco carriers are a favorite among seasoned baby wearers who need something with a little more structure than a wrap. Available in 10 colors, the Gemini will quickly become part of your essential baby gear stash.

4Moms mamaRoo bouncer

4Moms mamaRoo bouncer

When it hit the market, the mamaRoo (shop4moms.com, $240) made a big splash. This year, 4moms released an updated model. The mamaRoo sways back and forth and bounces up and down, moving the way you move when you’re soothing and carrying your baby. Super high tech, this cool baby bouncer plays built-in nature sounds or music from your MP3 player. The updated version moves more smoothly and quickly and comes in brand new vibrant fashions. The soft, plush seat can be removed and cleaned after inevitable spit-up and diaper mishaps.

Skip Hop Complete Sheets

Skip Hop Complete Sheets

The new Skip Hop Complete Sheets (skiphop.com, $24) are so stylish and innovative, it’s hard to believe no one thought of this before. With crib bumpers becoming obsolete, these adorable new sheets feature a contrasting pattern around the outside that resembles a crib bumper when seen through the slats of the crib. The seven available prints feature modern design and bright colors that get away from tired pastels. Super cute.

Peg Perego Siesta high chair

Peg Perego Siesta high chair

The stylish, sleek Peg Perego Siesta (target.com, $300) adjusts with your baby, reclining for feeding little ones and adjusting for growing legs. It's a sturdy but lightweight high chair, making it easy to move around your house. And who hasn't dragged a high chair from room to room? This chair is ultra easy to fold, so even though it's chic enough to leave in your dining room, you can fold it away for more space as needed.

Find more of our favorite baby gear for new babies >>

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Double strollers: Which one is right for you?
High chairs: Which one is right for you?

Safety tips for buying used baby clothes and gear

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