Tiny Love Take Along Mobile Review

For the first two months of my baby’s life, she was content only if my husband or I held her. Adorable, yes, but we do occasionally need to do other things. (Aside from scrolling through our iPhone with one hand.) As new parents, we weren’t experts at how to soothe, distract or entertain her. I bought different types of baby gear like swaddles and swings, but nothing was doing the trick.

We still aren’t experts, but we got a reprieve after I happened upon the Tiny Love Take Along Mobile. In a writer-mom group I’m in on Facebook, someone wrote a post asking for baby shower gift suggestions for a recipient who lives in a small apartment. Among the responses was one praising this portable mobile as “baby crack”—as in, it’s that addictive. So entertaining that your baby forgets about you. Sometimes, for just five or 10 minutes, which is precisely what you need to go pee or gather your wits.

I as $5 contra if this less thanption would perform as promised? It was available on Amazon for next day shipping, so I figured it was worth a try. We really needed to do the dishes and maybe even start brushing our teeth again.

Setup Was Easy

I eagerly unpackaged the mobile from the box and set it up over our babe’s bassinet. Setup involved attaching the arm and adding batteries; it required a screwdriver, but the whole job took less than 5 minutes. I laid her underneath the friendly pastel fox, deer and owl as they started to spin—and she seemed instantly transported to a world of her own. She laid quietly in the bassinet while we revealed in the calm, not quite believing something so small and inexpensive could work so well. So, I can confirm the baby crack lore.

Sounds: 5 melodies | timer: Automatic shutoff in 30 minutes | Batteries or plugin: Batteries | Weight: 1.2 pounds

Months later, it still does. My husband peeked over my shoulder while I was writing this at 5 am and asked blearily what I was doing. I explained about the mobile, and he said, “Oh yeah, that thing worked.” (The fact that he remembered it at all is a ringing endorsement.) Setting it up truly was a breakthrough for us in those early parenting days.

You can do a lot of things in 10 to 15 minutes. That’s why I love the Tiny Love Take Along Mobile. It’s a screen-free toy that completely captivates your baby and gives you the break you need. If you’re lucky, your LO will sail right into a peaceful nap.

It’s Quite Portable, Too

This Tiny Love baby mobile has a lot going for it, but No. 1 for me is its versatility. It has an arm with a rubbery grip at one end that you can tighten onto a crib, bassinet or basically any edge that’s between 1 and about 2.5 inches thick. We keep our bassinet downstairs, and unfortunately it has an oddly shaped plastic frame that the grip couldn’t grab onto. No problem: I just pulled the bassinet over to a bookshelf and attached the arm to that instead. Later, I attached it to our Lalo Play Gym for baby playtime as you can see in these pictures. It also has a clip and a Velcro strip you can use to attach it when the grip won’t work, like on your stroller for walks.

Speaking of travel, the Tiny Love mobile weighs less than a pound, so it would be easy to pack up in your diaper bag and take along.

The no-brainer settings are another pro. You can set the Tiny Love mobile to spin with or without the music, which consists of tinkly versions of five standard nursery rhymes. (It’s actually pretty zen and not too annoying.) It also turns itself off after a half hour, so you can’t drain the battery by accidentally leaving it on when naptime’s over. The first pair of batteries I put in have lasted for over three months now.

I also love that the mobile encourages my baby’s own curiosity and even movement as she wonders at and reaches for these curious creatures. You can choose a version that goes with your decor to an extent: Meadow Days (a primary-colored fox, porcupine and owl), Princess Days (a pastel bird, squirrel and mouse) or Treasure the Ocean (a crab, jellyfish, and turtle). Variations come and go in and out of stock.

The color scheme options are my only real criticism, though. Like so much of the kid gear that works, this thing is zany. My baby’s room is muted tones of apricot, cream and beige. I picked out a mobile for it that matched perfectly, with pastel felted swans hanging from birch rods.

Yes, I realize my Swan Lake mobile is more for me than for my baby. It’s The Little Prince of mobiles—adults love it, but kids? Meh. The Tiny Love mobile, on the other hand, is the cars 3 of mobiles. The colors are bright, the animals are cartoonish, and the textures are shiny and crinkly, not matte and plush. It might not coordinate, but there’s a certain point in new parenthood when that starts to matter less. I’d say it’s right around 8 weeks.

I’ll also note that these little gadgets seem to sell like hot cakes. I bought the Magical Tales version in black and white, and it’s not available on Amazon right now, although several other versions are.

Tiny Love does make a bigger “classic” mobile that’s not designed for travel, but in my opinion it makes sense to buy one that can do everything and go with you everywhere. In this case, the least expensive option is pretty perfect.

We’re still honing our baby distraction skills, but we’re getting better at it. In addition to the Tiny Love mobile, here are some other baby toys we’ve found to be worthy of the “baby crack” title. Like it, they’re screen-free, easy to clean and portable.

Shop More Baby Toys And Distracters

The Classic Sensory Toy

Our lactation consultant recommended classic Oball toys to encourage our babe to develop dexterity with her tongue and hands. They’re easy to grip, so even very young babies can bring it to their mouth and explore it, which helps many babies who have difficulty latching work on their tongue strength and extension. In addition to all that helpful stuff, the primary colors are apparently captivating. It’s simple, it’s cheap, and it’s a hit. I love that it can go in the dishwasher for easy cleaning.

An Unbelievably Entertaining Piece of ‘Paper’

The rustling of this unassuming black-and-white 6-inch square recently kept our babe entertained for an entire family dinner. I strapped her into her stroller and put it under her feet so she could stomp on it. It was a huge hit with her and with my husband and me—we got to eat dinner at the same time. Like the Oball, it’s no mess, machine washable and practically indestructible.

The Cutest Animal Flash Cards

Stand these high-contrast animal flash cards up around the edge of your baby’s bassinet, and she’ll likely love ogling all the fine details. Not only are they adorable, but they’re great for strengthening her memory and vision of her. They’re also fun for newborns and older kids alike; we know that the stories we tell our daughter about them will just change as she grows. We have the baby animals set, and we love that it includes unusual animals like tapirs and alpacas as well as your more standard lambs and ducklings. Our parenting editor used to hand these cards to her babies during diaper changes for a little distraction.

A Soft, Crinkly Book

Whether they’re chewing on it, or excitedly absorbing the sweet images within it, these soft, crinkly baby books from Jellycat are usually a great bet. It’s an early and colorful introduction to reading.

A Handheld Music Device For Babies

Sure, it’s a bit loud and bright, but we suspect that’s why babies like this flashing, handheld musical toy so much. Also, the buttons. There are buttons to push! Recommended for ages 3 and up, and yes, it requires batteries but those come installed. It’s also wipeable and there’s a volume control.

A Fidget Spinner For The Win

A few years ago, on my nephew’s first overnight flight, we stuck one of these to the tray table and he spent the whole trip playing with it. It was a better distraction than The Lion King given his age. He loved sticking it everywhere: to his high chair tray, the sides of the cabinets, the wood floor; it can even go in the bathtub. There’s no mess, no pieces to clean up—just giggles and intense focus. Note to self: Buy one before our babe’s first flight. Ages 10 months and up.

When All Else Fails, Let Them Jump

This one is for the older babies, the ones who are ready to move but not quite walking. They can hold their heads up safely, though, and they just want to bounce those legs. The Fisher-Price Jumperoo sure is bright and it takes up a bit of space, but our parenting editor swears by this jumper as the ultimate baby distractor for high-energy kids. Besides jumping, they can spin around in the chair, reaching for all those additional toys attached to it. There are lights and music, too, but you can disable those by removing batteries. You might just gain a whole 20 minutes with this one.


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