View Full Version : Not enough product recommendations

06-11-2004, 11:20 AM
While I found Toddler Bargains to be a useful resource, I felt it did not contain nearly the detail that Baby Bargains did about specific product recommendations. For example, it did not contain enough detail for childproofing-I was hoping for specific product recommendations because as we all know, there are a lot of proofing products that don't work. Instead of finding it in the book, I had to search the message boards. I love the message boards, don't get me wrong-but I ordered the book to save me the time of having to search them when I'm in a hurry to buy something. I was sorely disappointed to see very little detail about childproofing, which I think is a big concern with active toddlers. Where is the discussions on cabinet locks that work, what products are the most essential, window guards, etc. Also, while many of us have Baby Bargains as well, I think it'd be helpful to repeat info in the toddler book that is pertinent to Toddlers-such as info about the best diapers and wipes, good quality sheets. My Baby Bargains is outdated and I hoped my new Toddler Bargains book would cover the essentials for toddlers, even if they are also covered in Baby Bargains. I don't think I should have to keep buying the Baby Bargains book once I only have a toddler just to find out info for my toddler...I know you can't repeat all of baby bargains for space reasons, but maybe the bare essentials that are most relevant to toddlers.

Unless I missed it, there wasn't any info on good toys for toddlers. Certainly, while every child is different and it would be very difficult to come to a universal consesus, there certainly must be the toys that most kids tend to like. Mr. Potato head? Candyland? I don't know-I haven't got to that stage yet-again why I bought the Toddler Bargains book.

What about a section on miscellaneous products that people seem to love on the message boards-the learning tower, for example? I would never have known about this were it not for the message boards.

Regarding the food section, how about listing some useful food resources other than just the recipe books? Eating is another huge concern with toddlers-how about internet sites for tips and toddler-friendly recipes and any other info that might be helpful to parents with picky eaters?

Keep up the good work and please improve on the book.


06-12-2004, 06:32 PM
I know what you're saying. FYI - there is some info. on toys toward the end of the book. It talks about websites that rates toys & some favorites (Kalypso trike, software, etc.) It's not a ton of info. but it's helpful.

06-13-2004, 09:33 AM
I agree that I have not found the info in Toddler Bargains to be as in depth as the info in Baby Bargains. I bought the first edition of Toddler Bargains and flipped through the second edition in a bookstore. I didn't really see any big changes so I skipped it. I might have missed it, but for example I didn't see the Fisher Price Healthy Care booster seat reviewed in the second edition, even though it is a fairly new seat by a major baby products company.

In addition one thing that really bugs me for some reason is that in Toddler Bargains the spelling of "The First Years" company is wrong. It is always spelled "1st Years" instead of "The First Years" even though their website is listed correctly. I cringe every time I see it written the wrong way, and it looks like it was not fixed in the second edition either. It is too easy to confuse it with the company "Saftey 1st" when it is listed the wrong way.


06-13-2004, 11:56 AM
Chris - I just wanted to say that you have made some excellent points. I am to the point where I was considering Toddler Bargains as a next book, but I think your suggesions are very good and would be helpful to me if I were purchasing the book. Thanks for a well thought out post.

ETA: My version of Baby Bargains is also outdated, so that makes this post very important. I also don't want to purchase an updated version that has all the info for newborns, just to get updated info for my toddler on bedding, clothing, carseats, high chairs & boosters, toys etc.

06-21-2004, 06:03 PM
Thanks for the feedback on the book.

Well, a couple of comments:

1. We DO have lists of recommended toys in TODDLER BARGAINS on page 263 (including a list of classic toys, another for just fun toys, another for educational toys, etc). And yes, we do recommend CandyLand.

2. We should beef up the toddler proofing section, but we were focusing on more toddler areas of concern (bike helmets). We assumed you have already "baby" proofed the house with cabinet locks and window guards, as we discussed those in Baby Bargains and gave specific product recommendations.

3. Yes, we goofed on the 1st Years/The First Years thing. We will correct that!

4. We intentionally did NOT make the content of the books' overlap. The key topics of the TODDLER BARGAINS book (booster car seats, buying a twin bed, kitchen boosters, potty seats) are distinct topics to toddlers. We thought folks would be upset if we repeated much of the BABY BARGAINS book in the TODDLER book, as they would have perceived us charging twice for the same info!

For those who have an outdated BABY BARGAINS book, we have an idea. We are mulling a quick "buyer's guide" version of the next BABY BARGAINS book---it would be half the cost, half the size of the BABY book and just contain product recommendations and reviews. (No indepth shopping advice, etc). That way, folks who have an older edition can get the latest updates without paying the full price.

What do you think?

Alan & Denise Fields, authors

06-22-2004, 12:06 PM
I would be interested in the buyers guide, assuming that, as you stated, the cost would be less and would give specific and updated recommendations, so that i didn't have to purchase the Baby Bargains book again in updated version. Obviously, most of us have already spent out $ on the version we have (and used it like a bible!), but once it's outdated, we hate to buy again just for the updated products when we've already read the rest of the stuff in there before. I like the idea.

I also think, though, that the OP's intent is valid. You wouldn't have to repeat everything in the Toddler book that's in BB. You could simply repeat things that are pertinent to toddlers specifically (like bedding and clothing that is not for newborns necessarily.) and not repeat everything else from bottles to formula to wipes, etc. There could be some overlap without it being too redundant, I would think.

06-23-2004, 10:24 AM
I second what Andrea said. And I do like the idea of the buyers/product guide. I felt like a total cheapskate when I looked up a quick review of cribs one day at the bookstore without buying it. I didn't need the whole book, just needed to know the latest recommendations/ratings on cribs. And yes, the book is a bible!

~ mommy to Declan 3.24.03
and number 2 EDD 9.14.04

06-27-2004, 12:44 AM
You said "We thought folks would be upset if we repeated much of the BABY BARGAINS book in the TODDLER book, as they would have perceived us charging twice for the same info!"

No, we're upset you *haven't* repeated the same info!! :) You could put on the cover of Toddler Bargains "with Bonus info from Baby Bargains, updated for toddlers"

And, as for baby proofing info- I would love toddler bargains to have it. For instance, I've discovered I need a baby gate to keep my toddler out of his brother's room.... this wasn't a problem when he could only crawl, but now that he walks I can't keep up with him so we need it.

I LOVE your books, and hope to see them get even better :)

06-28-2004, 01:39 PM
Just wanted to say thanks again for all this feedback! We do appreciate it.

alan & denise

06-28-2004, 05:22 PM
I love Buyer's guides! I never go on a big-ticket shopping trip without my Consumer Report's Guide. It would be nice to have an updated product list b/c they get out of date so quickly in this market.

06-30-2004, 02:55 AM
Bc I think you are adorable people for the books you've already put out, I'll stick my neck out and dissuade you from publishing a buyers' guide. For one, newbies might buy the BG instead of BB because it's cheaper, when really what they need is the sound advice in BB. Secondly, as someone pointed out, it's virtually impossible to keep up with ALL the products that come out all the time, and you would be hard-pressed to come up with something that seems complete and thorough, which consumers will feel entitled to expect.

I looked at the Consumer Reports guide, and while it was interesting, I didn't think it was worth purchasing and found the BBB i bought a zillion times more useful.

I'd far rather see you put your time and effort into better and better editions of BBB (although I think the 5th edition is fantastic!)...

You can please some people some of the time but you can't please all people all of the time... :)


06-30-2004, 02:36 PM
how about a way to register to get the buyer's guide? oh, i can't think of how, right now, but some way that you would have to have bought the book first to qualify for the buyer's guide?
either way, i love the books.
and i did buy the wedding bargains one twice :)!
trying-to-conceive :)
mama to Jack 6/6/03