March 17, 2011

Planning Makes Perfect


Between Helping Parents Select Their Ideal Birth Plan To Outfitting A Nursery, This Resourceful NYC Mom Turned Her Knack for Assisting Other Expectant Moms Into A Growing Business

By Kristen Drybread


Preparing for the birth of a baby is an exciting time, but many new parents are surprised by the stress of their seemingly endless to-do lists. From learning how to assemble nursery furniture to deciding on a stroller, sometimes even the best-prepared parents find the need to call on an expert.

New York City mom Jennifer Link comes to the rescue of many overwhelmed parents as the owner of New York City Sweet Pea Baby Planners, the first all-inclusive baby planning firm that boasts a nationwide network of seasoned baby planners, baby experts, and manufacturers of baby products. Link, who previously worked as a business development executive in music and media, assists parents with everything from outfitting a nursery to drawing up a birth plan to correctly installing a car seat. She gives parents the low-down on breast pumps, bottles and baby-carriers, and can talk through various techniques for sleep training. The only thing she doesn’t do is give medical advice, but she can direct parents to the appropriate specialist. Her role is best described as part personal shopper, part therapist and part older sister—one with great advice and plenty of experience to share.

It all began in 2009, when Link and her husband brought their daughter, Lucie, home from the hospital. Despite all their preparations, they found themselves scrambling and stressed. “Lucie was far smaller than expected, so everything we’d bought was too big,” she explains. “We had to rush to the store to get diapers instead of spending the day at home. I remember wishing there was someone we could call to do the shopping for us.”

Recognizing the need for help during this stressful time, Link began to assist expectant friends preparing for their own babies, and her spot-on recommendations soon spread by word-of-mouth. As more and more expectant moms starting calling her for advice, she had an idea. “I realized how important it can be for new parents to have someone there to guide them, and I realized that I wanted to do that full-time,” she says.  

Now two years into her position with Sweet Pea Baby Planners, Link says that many parents find her expertise especially useful when it comes to researching and testing baby gear. “Baby stuff befuddles. With thousands of products out there, no parent can learn all there is to know,” she says. And frankly, she argues, no parent should. “You only need to know about the products you have and the products you need. Encyclopedic knowledge of baby gear won’t make you a better parent.”

While some might balk at the thought of paying a professional to compile a baby registry or locate the perfect pediatrician, Links wants new parents to know that her services can actually save them money. “I can help a family avoid buying a ton of useless gear or wasting a lot of time trying to find a resource or the right professional,” she says.

And what does she consider the best thing about being a baby planner? “Watching the relief wash over parents’ faces when they realize they don’t have to run to the store for diaper cream or unpack and set up the new Bugaboo. I can do it all for them.”

For more information, visit sweetpeababyplanners.com/jlink.


Jen’s Gems
Jennifer Link Shares Her Favorite Travel Products For New Parents On The Go

ZoLi Baby OHM Diaper
Changing Mat

“This changing mat is fantastic. It’s non-toxic, easy to clean and rolls up for
easy storage. It’s a great way to introduce a little ‘ohm’ into anyone’s life.”
(zolibaby.com)

Summer Infant BabyTouch Audio and Video Monitor
“Both the camera and the monitor are portable, which is great if you need to
watch your little one in other places besides their crib. The monitor also is
touchscreen and super easy to use.” (summerinfant.com)

phil & teds Nest Travel Bed
“This product is actually a place for the little one to sleep. But, you can
also pack things in it for your journey, so it’s a carryall, too. You can take
it on vacation or just to the park for the afternoon, because it features a UV
mesh cover.” (philandteds.com)


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