My first playard, the one I purchased while pregnant with Emma, was one of the most inexpensive I could find.  It also was a pain to put up and take down, had no bassinet or special accessories (which I definitely could have used), and had a very hard “mattress” bottom.  I wouldn’t even let Emma sleep in it without adding a puffy twin-sized comforter beneath the playard sheet.  Needless to say, Emma didn’t sleep in that playard very often.

She did, however, do a LOT of playing in it.  It was really a lifesaver when it came to keeping her out of mischief while mommy cooked, cleaned, or worked (I worked as an MT at home then).  Honestly, if I had realized in the beginning just how much it would have been used, I would have spent a little more and purchased something nice.

Like THIS:

This is the Carter’s Elephant Parade Collection Comfort ‘N Care Playard from Summer Infant and let me tell you – it is royalty compared to my old “peasant” playard, which still resides under the crib.  I’m thinking that old one is going to go in the trash because I don’t even want to give it away – it’s that bad.

The Elephant Parade Comfort ‘N Care Playard

Thanks to Summer Infant, I received this beautiful playard with bassinet and changer for review.  Oh. My. Word.  I LOVE this thing.  And I’m mourning the fact that I wasted my time with the cheap one for two years when Emma could have had something like this.  But now it’s time to look toward the future.  Emma’s little brother will have this lovely bed to come home from the hospital to – lucky little guy!

Receiving and Putting It Together

When you purchase this playard, it comes in this huge heavy box.  I wondered if there would be a lot of assembly, but was VERY pleasantly surprised to find this upon opening the box:

I love that it comes in a bag with a handle like that!  I can’t tell  you how many times I took my old playard places and had the playard itself fall out.  This will eliminate a lot of frustration.  You’re still able to wrap the mattress around the playard frame and carry it that way… but who would want to?  Oh, and all of the accessories fit into the bag, too! How cool is that?

Putting the entire playard together including bassinet was really easy.  First, the playard itself is ready to go the minute you receive it – no assembly required.  And putting it up was a breeze! I immediately noted that it was much easier and faster to put up than my last playard, which required holding it just right or it wouldn’t go up at all.  Each wall of the playard snapped into place with no effort whatsoever.  LOVE IT!

Emma immediately wanted to get inside and test it out for us.  Wow, the mattress is SO soft and very padded. I would have no qualms about letting my baby sleep inside without extra padding if need be.

This playard is also a lot roomier than the old playard, something I appreciate.  It’ll grow with your child nicely.

Accessories & Features

As far as adding the accessories, the bassinet part basically snaps onto the side rails and you place the mattress inside.  This is the bed for infants and babies who cannot yet push themselves up.  And isn’t the little elephant mobile cute?  Each of those elephants is stuffed and super soft – Emma can’t stay away from them.  The mobile also spins around.

The changer is AWESOME.  You’ll see why in a minute.  First of all, it has a security belt so you can strap your baby in while changing him or her.  This is good for those times you know you’re going to be distracted by something and are going to step away for a moment.

The changer also has buckles as seen above that secure it to the playard.  But the best feature of this changer is that it folds up and down so that it’s always attached but out of the way while baby is sleeping.  :)

Next is the snap-on storage tray.  This has three mesh compartments with firm bottoms, and one of them has a lid.  Emma decided this was a good place for her pacifier.  ;-)  I love the way this is set up because it makes it easy to store diapers, wipes, oils and creams (that I can never seem to find), and toys for baby right where you need it.

Also included is a sound machine that plays womb sounds, nature sounds, and music.  I wasn’t a huge fan of the music – it’s kind of easy listening rather than nursery lullabies, but the nature and womb sounds are great!  This takes 3 AA batteries (not included).

The last thing I want to note is that the fabric and embroidery is both adorable and great quality!  Everything is also easily washable – you can throw the entire bassinet in the wash if need be, and the mattress is easily wiped down.

Quick Overview of Features

  • Fold-aside changer
  • Full-size bassinet
  • Mobile with three elephants
  • Musical Unit that plays music, nature, and womb sounds
  • Wheels for portability
  • Deluxe fabrics and embroidery
  • Accessory tray with three compartments

Final Thoughts: I think my favorite feature of this playard is the fold-aside changer.  It’s nice that it’s not just a separate accessory that I have to try to find a place to store!  The bag that I can carry everything in and zip up is also a huge plus because it would be hard drag the playard and accessories everywhere otherwise.  I would probably have been put off by the necessity of taking off all of the accessories (bassinet, changer, and mobile) before folding this up and putting it away, but when I did it myself I found it all so easy to remove that I couldn’t count it a downside in the least.  Carter’s and Summer Infant really did an awesome job designing this playard – it really does make life easier for mommy and more comfortable for baby!

Want One?

You can purchase the Carter’s Elephant Parade Comfort ‘N Care Playard in-store from retailers such as Babies R Us, Toys R Us, Target, and Walmart.  See a complete list of stores here!  If you’re ready to purchase online now, check our Amazon.com.  This playard retails for $169.99.

Other baby gear in the Elephant Parade Collection:

Thanks to the wonderful people at Summer Infant, one of you will win the Carter’s Elephant Parade Collection Cuddle Me Musical Bouncer!

Giveaway Closed – Congrats to Mrs. Smitty!

{Prize} Summer Infant Cuddle Me Musical Bouncer ($60.00 value)
{Eligibility} Open to the United States and Canada.

{Mandatory Main Entry – do this before moving on to extra entries}

Visit www.summerinfant.com and tell me something else you would love to own!

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(Leave a separate comment for each extra entry!)

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    I just entered to win a Carter’s Musical #Baby Bouncer from @SummerInfant & @Kindred_Spirit!  #Giveaway ends 12/9 http://bit.ly/cYSBCW
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Giveaway will be closed on December 9, 2010 at midnight PST and winner notified by email.  Winner will then have 48 hours to reply to my email or I will have to re-draw another winner.  Good luck, everyone!

I would like to thank Allison from Summer Infant for sending me the Comfort ‘N Care Playard in order that I might give you a thorough review. This post is 100% my own opinion, thoughts, and experiences, and was not edited or reviewed by anyone.  I do not feel obligated to write a positive review – I’ll always share my honest thoughts on products. I was not compensated monetarily for this post.

See full review, giveaway, and disclosure policy here.

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