Even if your Insta feed chronicles baby’s every move, it’s worth your time to record big milestones and memories in a baby book. You’ll want to remember them, and your child will love to learn about those magical early days. From app-powered baby logs to sleek hardcover baby memory books, here are 20 modern takes on personalized baby books.
A Private Social Network
Privacy is one of parents' top concerns when sharing photos and videos of their kids. Tinybeans provides a closed social network where you invite the friends and family you want to view your uploads. You also control whether people can comment on your photos and videos, or download them to share on other social media sites. But it's more than just a place to store (unlimited!) photos and videos. It's an online journal where you can track your kids' growth, milestones and other developments, and print photo books for yourself or loved ones. Grandparents not so tech-savvy? It's user-friendly and they can view photos on the website or an app. Plus, they get email updates when there's new content for them to view.
Available at tinybeans.com, Google Play and the Apple App store. Downloading the apps and using the website are free; there's also a Family Premium version with additional features for $8/month, $50/year or $250/lifetime.
Three Years of Memories
Document the first three years of your child's life with this handy baby book. In addition to space to record the basics about your birth and family, there are lots of fun prompts about your home, baby's visitors, daily routines at different ages, favorite activities, holiday celebrations, and friends. There's an expandable pocket at the back of the book for storing keepsakes, with an elastic enclosure to keep things all together.
Available at quartoknows.com, $22.99.
Gender-Neutral & Gorgeous
This gender-neutral journal covers your pregnancy and the first year of baby's life in style, with a linen cover, gold embossed title, illustrated end pages and a linen box to store the book in. The guided journal features prompts you'll look forward to filling out, including favorite toys, funny things baby is doing and memorable moments for each month.
Available at writetomeshop.com, $59.95.
Go Beyond the Book
This baby memory book from C.R. Gibson, "A Book of Baby's Firsts," includes a washable-ink pad so you can document and remember just how teeny your baby's feet and hands were. The Bundle Bright line also includes the smaller and very Instagrammable "Our Magical Memories" ($6.77), which comes with 25 flippable cards you fill in with baby's milestones. Pages can be rearranged however you like.
Helpful Photo Prompts
In addition to lots of space for your photos, this interactive photo journal from Artifact Uprising includes written photo prompts to help you tell your child's story: bath time snaps, favorite spots to snuggle, the day baby met special people. Thanks to the four-ring binder, you can rearrange or remove any pages that don't work for your family. The customizable construction also means you can add extra pages where you want them.
Available at artifactuprising.com, from $99.
Focus on the Family
When We Became Three documents mom and dad's relationship and pregnancy as well as the milestones for baby's first and second year. And yes, there is a When We Became Four book. Clever questions and checklists make this book fun for couples to fill out, which is a big plus for busy new parents.
Available at amazon.com, $6.71.
A Walk on the Wild Side
Record the first 12 months of baby's life with National Geographic's Welcome Little One keepsake baby book. In addition to spots to record baby's amazing milestones, the book includes cute animal photos, heartwarming poems and quotes, and stickers for each monthly milestone. This is one book you and your child will love to page through for years to come.
Available at shop.nationalgeographic.com, $24.
Share with your little one what the world was like when they were born with This Is Your Book, by graphic artist and father Ryan Maconochie. In addition to recording baby’s vitals with sleek visuals, this book includes prompts about current events, pop culture, your favorite things and musings on baby, like which names you scratched off the list.
Available at amazon.com, $9.98.
The Total Package
The Story of You has thought of everything new parents could want in a baby book. There are prompts you can fill out (about pregnancy, funny moments, and holiday memories), plus open spaces to record special moments and add photos as you like. The binder format lets you add, remove and reorder pages. And you can buy additional pages to record circumstances such as adoption, foster care, a NICU stay, infertility, and a heavenly baby.
Available at emilyley.com, $62.
No matter how far away your loved ones are, they can feel like they are with you for all of baby’s firsts with the free Moment Garden app. All those precious moments are backed up and kept private for you to share with those you choose. Want a physical book too? Print a hardcover or softcover book whenever you like.
Available at momentgarden.com; the app is free, and a book costs $9-$49.
The Dreamcatcher black-and-white baby book from Etsy shop Mushybooks offers a sleek, gender-neutral design. Its 50 pages include all the moments you would expect from a baby book (birth story, firsts, favorites. etc.) with an aesthetic that's clean and simple so your baby can shine. Pages can be added or removed as desired.
Available at Etsy shop Mushybooks, $66.26.
Mini Brag Book
Take photo books to tiny dimensions with Minibooks from Social Print Studio. Compile all your favorite baby photos into laminated, spiral-bound photo books. Slip them into your purse or pocket, so you always have pictures of mini-you to share with friends and family. This makes a great gift idea for grandparents too!
Available at socialprintstudio.com, 2 books for $17.
Take a non-traditional approach to memorykeeping and celebrate all of those alternative baby moments with Baby’s First Tattoo, by Jim Mullen. With this humorous approach to baby books, you'll never forget those other important moments, like: baby’s first tantrum in a crowded grocery store or places baby crawls that parents didn’t think possible.
Available at amazon.com, $4.79.
Box It Up
Not every baby milestone fits into a book. The fabric boxes of The Library: Baby Keepsake Box can be displayed like books but hold so much more than a traditional tome. In this handcrafted memory box, you can save baby’s favorite blanket, a lock of hair, the first pair of shoes and more. There are even vertical files for important documents or photos.
Available at savor.us, $79.95.
Do you have trouble remembering to jot down those milestones? My Own Little Story is an online baby book that offers free email reminders to help you keep track of baby’s special moments. It even has a snooze button for those milestones baby hasn’t hit yet. Print your book once you have 10 milestones, or wait to create a larger book with up to 36 milestones or 72 printed pages.
Available at myownlittlestory.com, $38.99-$78.99.
Easy Phone Photos
Chatbooks took a candid look at the craziness that is motherhood and offered a supremely simple solution to printing photos from your phone. The app will automatically arrange your photos in chronological order for you. All you have to do is add captions and pick your cover to capture all of baby’s special moments.
Available at chatbooks.com; hardcover books star at $20, and softcover books start at $10.
With an emphasis on your baby’s interactions with the natural world, The First 1000 Days: A Baby Journal by Nikki McClure lets you record your baby’s birth story as well as their first tree, moon and garden. The bold papercut illustrations will captivate even the youngest eyes.
Available at amazon.com, $6.41.
A Noteworthy Book
The Mom's One Line a Day book simplifies the baby book by letting moms write one short note a day to document an event, experience or that day's feelings. With room for five years' worth of notes, you can document the magic of your little one's early years without too much effort.
Available at amazon.com, $12.79.
Letters to My Baby allows you to write your child letters about your hopes, dreams and memories. Once written, you seal them until your child is old enough to read them. There are prompts for each of the 12 letters to help you craft what you write.
Available at papersource.com, $14.95.
The Guilt-Free Baby Book
No need to spend countless hours creating a scrapbook-like memory book because this book from Lucy Darling has done the work for you. Available in a variety of themes, there's space to document firsts, favorites and monthly milestones amid beautifully designed pages.
Available at lucydarling.com, $34.99.
Psst, did you know Tinybeans is a free modern family album app that gives parents a happy space to enjoy their children’s life stories with family? Effortlessly organize pics, videos & milestones, print cute keepsakes, and share with family in one safe space off social media.
—Katie L. Carroll & Jane Putnam