Trying to find the right baby gift, especially for a mom who is not a first-timer, is not always easy since becoming a mom myself. Before I was a mom, I’d give clothes, but after I had my first kid, I realized I received far more white onesies and wash cloths than I ever needed. Plus, everyone wants their gift to stand out as something special, right? Citrus Lane is the easy answer.
Started by two Silicon Valley moms, Mountain View-based Citrus Lane is a subscription based gift service – or at least it can be. It can also be a one time gift. Or it doesn’t have to be a gift at all. It’s all up to the buyer. Citrus Lane can work many ways, but the way I like best is as a monthly gift. For a new mom (or before, as a shower gift), I can buy a monthly gift for $25 a month. So for say $75, I can buy three months of great age-appropriate gifts to be sent along to the mother. Long after the initial newborn thrill has passed for family and friend, when the long nights and colic have set in, when no one is bringing buy meals or sending cards, a box from Citrus Lane brings more than a baby gift, it brings sunshine. On those days when I didn’t have a chance to brush my teeth until my husband came home from work, on the days I counted down until nap time, I would have loved a surprise delivery.
This is what the teething box looks like, aimed at babies around three months:
The boxes are filled with high quality, very Eco-friendly items, and many of the toys and food I’ve seen at Whole Foods, making the $25 a box a huge bargain. The value of the boxes tends to run between $30-$50, giving the gift giver a huge bang for their buck.
Another option is to give a box to the mom to be at a shower. And yet another is the shameless option that I would have taken, which is to buy a few months for myself. There are many possibilities on how to use Citrus Lane. The company is flexible and has a high standard for customer service, using the Zappos model of going all out to ensure customer happiness. After each box, the company seeks user feedback and makes changes based on that. Take the example of the owl lunchbox. I love this lunch box. The lunch box is a part of a box aimed at babies “dining out.” The box went out for the first time, and instead of falling madly in love with the owl, like I did, some people thought that it was too feminine for boys. As a mom of a boy, I would have happily taken the owl as my own, but in response to the customer feedback, Citrus Lane immediately shifted to sending the owls to girls and bees to boys (oddly enough, a female classmate of my son uses the bee lunch bag).
Another cool thing is that Citrus Lane has mom interns, moms looking for recent work experience before re-entering the workforce. I love the idea.
It’s a company with a great product and equally great customer service. Win-win-win. The third win is for you, because the new mother will quickly rank you her No. 1 friend when she receives this gift, and she’ll be reminded of your awesomeness each month after.
Disclosure: Citrus Lane provided me with two boxes to review, one including an owl lunch box of my own, and the other the teething box that will cement my status as the best aunt to my little nephew. While I don’t have a child in Citrus Lane’s target age range (currently 0-18 months), I was thoroughly impressed by their product, price, and customer service approach.