Posts tagged ‘Baby’

Baby Items You Cannot Live Without (1)

This is a very necessary post.

Several months ago I asked for your advice on baby items. What do you recommend? What do you love? What do you hate? You were extremely helpful and I’m forever grateful for your help.

Now my baby is here and he’s three and half months and (shocker shocker) I have some opinions of my own. So today and tomorrow I’m going to share those opinions with you. I have no idea how long this list is going to be, I’m just going to go with it. So pull up a chair and listen to momma.

(The bold items are links. Most link to the company’s website unless I couldn’t find that product, in which case it just takes you to a place to buy it.)

The Miracle Blanket
This is HANDS DOWN the best baby item we own. It’s a swaddle that is practically a straight jacket. I don’t know how anyone gets any sleep without them. There are several other swaddles out there and they may be equally as awesome, I just have never used anything but The Miracle Blanket. They aren’t sold in stores (that I know of) so you have to order them from the website. Each swaddle is $30 and while that may seem pricey, it is SO worth it. You cannot put a price on sleep.

The Medela Breast Pump
I hate pumping. I hate it so much. I feel like all I ever do is change diapers, make bottles, and pump. Pump. Pump. Pump. I’m tired of it. BUT I am so thankful that I can do it. I’m thankful that I can provide food for my child even though I have to be at work. And I’m thankful that technology is so advanced that I don’t have to manually pump my milk. I don’t know how people do that. I know you can rent pumps from the hospital and if that’s your thing, go for it. I’m glad I own mine though. I pump so much that it’s practically my second child. I’m sort of attached to it and I’d feel really weird if I had to give it back to the hospital when all of this is done.

Music & Motion Soother
There are a bagillion of these out there, so you don’t necessarily need this exact one. This is just the one we found and liked. I’m fully aware that not all babies are as awesome as Jansen when it comes to bedtime, so please don’t assume this will be your lifesaver as it has been ours. As long as Jansen is in a good mood, we can put him in his crib (swaddled in his Miracle Blanket, of course), turn off his light, and turn on his soother. He seriously just stares at it until he falls asleep. It lights up and the animals move and it plays music. Light, motion, sound– a winning combination for a baby!

The Moby
Okay so I only got my Moby yesterday but that is exactly how much I love it. I originally got a different sling that goes over one shoulder. It was fine when Jansen was tiny but now he’s too heavy, it hurts my shoulder and back. I’d heard that the Moby is THE BEST product for baby wearing… I honestly have no idea why I didn’t get it to begin with. I’m a fool. I’m kicking myself for waiting over 3 months to get one. It fits wonderfully, doesn’t hurt my back, Jansen loves it, and I can actually get stuff done without putting him down when he’s in a mood.

Lansinoh Breast Pads
If you’re breastfeeding, breast pads are a must. A non-negotiable. I’ve only used two brands (Medela and Lansinoh) and these are far superior. The Medela ones are gross and they don’t allow your skin to breathe, but the Lansinoh are wonderful and you can’t even feel them.

Chicco Cortina Travel System
My sister-in-law told us that Chicco had the best line of car seat/stroller combinations since they were the easiest to use. She’s about 5’2″ and tested all the strollers to see if she could fold and unfold the strollers with a purse and car seat in hand. This one passed the test. Stephen and I decided to test it out on our own. We whole-heartedly agree. The Graco one made me want to scream and throw things. This one is so user-friendly. And to top it off, Jansen loves it. He falls asleep almost instantly and stays asleep throughout our car trips. He likes to sit in there sometimes at home too, since his owl friend hangs from the handle and he likes to talk to him. Plus, it rocks! (I mean literally, you can rock it while it’s sitting on the ground.)

Binkies! Binkies! Binkies! (Each word is a different link.)
We are full supporters of binkies. Babies have a natural need to suck, if you fight that, be prepared for some hissy fits. I don’t think I can help you too much here since all babies have their own thoughts and feelings on the matter. We started with the Soothies that the hospital provided, Jansen was immediately attached. The problem is that the don’t have a loop on the back so I could attach one of those strappy things to it. Many a paci has fallen on the ground because I didn’t have a strap thing. So I tried to get him onto a brand with a loop. Dr. Browns were highly recommended, but Jansen hated their guts. He literally gagged them out of his mouth, even the newborn sized ones. He has recently decided he likes the Avent and Mam brands. Praise the Lord, we can use a strap!

So that’s all for today, I’ll have more recommendations for you tomorrow. I hope this is helpful to you. I know many of you are pregnant or will be in the next few years. And if you’re not, these are great baby shower gift ideas!

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December 15, 2010 at 7:15 am 15 comments

90 Day Trial Period

Today Jansen turns three months, which means it has been 90ish days since the hospital let two clueless kids (read: Stephen and me) take him home and raise him without any adult supervision. I wasn’t sure if we could handle it or if I could maintain my sanity and keep him in one piece… but I must say that I have impressed even myself. Not only is Jansen alive, he’s happy and healthy and I haven’t dropped him once. I always remember to feed him and change his diaper and he rewards me with giggles, fat rolls, and warm cuddles.

We’re three months in, the trial period is over. I’ve taken his tags off and run him through the wash, there is no turning back now.

Sometimes I look back at his newborn pictures and mourn the growth of my baby. He only stayed tiny long enough for me to blink four times, then he grew. Now he’s holding up his head, pushing his little body up, and discovering his hands. While he may be bigger, this new phase is pretty darn fun. I mean, you saw that video yesterday right? Bliss.

Check out this kid’s growth. It’s unbelievable.

He’s growing up so fast it’s scary. He’s so active and alert now! It was actually a two person job to take this photo because he didn’t want to sit still!  Hard to believe that just a month ago, he laid there like a blob! Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to drop Jansen off at college.

December 2, 2010 at 7:15 am 17 comments

A Midweek Smile

If you know me in real life, chances are you’ve seen this.

If you don’t know me in real life but you’re anything like me, chances are you don’t watch videos on blogs.

I don’t care if you’ve seen it before or if you have never watched a video online before. Watch this. It’s guaranteed to make you smile. It even makes me smile when I watch it at work without sound. I’ve seen this about a million times and every time I watch it I turn 17 shades of happy.

Enjoy!

December 1, 2010 at 7:08 am 13 comments

It’s Been A Few Days Since I Posted A List

– Do you miss the lists?

– I’ve had my glasses since last Friday. I went back to the eye doctor on Tuesday to have them readjust them because they were too tight behind my ears. They still feel a tad bit tight but I’m scared if I have them loosen them anymore, they’ll fall off. Is it something I need to get used to? Or do I need to take them back in to have them readjusted again (re-readjusted)?

– It’s 10:35 on Wednesday night and Jansen has been WIDE AWAKE since 8:00. I hope that means he’s going to sleep well tonight. Monday and Tuesday night he slept in his bassinet instead of his swing. (You know, like a normal human being.) It went well. I’m hoping we have a few more good nights in the bassinet so I can move him to his crib.

– He has a Baby Einstein Pack N Play set up in our living room. It has this thing that hangs above him that plays music and has flashing lights. He LOVES it. He lays there and stares at it! Unfortunately the song and lights only last about a minute or two and then you have to push the button to make it start again.

– And now he’s asleep on my lap. PASSED OUT. Like, hard! His mouth is wide open and his binky is on his chest. Goodness gracious this kid is cute!

– I sat down yesterday to cash in all my Swagbucks for Amazon gift cards. APPARENTLY you can only make 2 purchases in the Swag Store per day. UGH. I have enough Swagbucks to buy 36 $5 giftcards. It’s going to take me 18 days to finish buying them! I wish I would have known that ahead of time. Then it takes 10-15 days for the Amazon store credit to show up in your account. So I’ll be done with this process in about 33 days. Dumb.

– Jansen is awake again. He’s farting and smiling and it is so cute.

– Did you catch my Tweet on Tuesday night? Frito Lay is discontinuing the biodegradable Sun Chips bag because it’s too noisy. It IS too noisy. Every time we go to the grocery store, Stephen grabs one from the shelf and makes as much noise as he can before I say, “Yeah. OKAY!”

– I’m no longer pregnant but I’m still addicted to Double Stuf Oreos. I think I’ll allow myself to keep this addiction until I stop breastfeeding, then I’ll need to get it under control. I just can’t help it, they are Heavenly. I swear, Nabisco needs to jar that icing.

– Has anyone seen The Social Network? Is it good? I kind of want to see it because I think it looks interesting. I also want to see Life As We Know It… not sure if that’s out yet. Stephen and I recently rented The Killers and Valentine’s Day from RedBox. Neither were excellent, but neither were bad. One thing I was reminded of? I love Ashton Kutcher!

– I thought I’d leave you with the photos I took of Jansen on his one month birthday. Each month I will take two photos of his in his custom monthly onesie- one up close to show his cuteness and the cuteness of the onesie, and one far back to show his growth in the chair.

October 7, 2010 at 7:26 am 16 comments

Like It Is (Part 2)

This is the second post in this two post series. If you missed Part 1 you can click here. Basically, this is an honest list of things you need to know about childbirth. In no way is this list meant to scare future moms. It’s purpose is actually the complete opposite… I want you to be prepared. NEWSFLASH: Some aspects of childbirth suck. If I’m the first to tell you that, well, you cannot be helped! Really though, it’s really not that bad. But if you scare easy, you shouldn’t read. All others, read on!

16. When people ask if Stephen stayed up by my face or down by my Baby Exit Zone, I wonder how they gave birth. Based on the position of my body as I was pushing, those places are so close that there isn’t much of an option. “Did he stay up by your face?” “Yes.” “Did he watch the whole thing?” “Yes.”

17. While in the hospital, you’re given some mesh undies. They are these one-size-fits-all thingies. They may look ridiculous but they are bliss. I wish I could wear them every day.

18. You bleed for weeks. Don’t like pads? Too bad!

19. Incase breastfeeding doesn’t suck enough, you also cramp while you feed. Your uterus literally contracts while you’re feeding. So you get to feel a very strong baby try to suck your boob off WHILE your entire belly aches.

20. Oh and you bleed while you breastfeed. And I don’t mean your boobs.

21. Stretch marks often show up AFTER you have the baby. I thought I only had two stretch marks. WRONGO.

22. Post pregnancy is much like your first trimester. You are always tired, seriously hungry, and if you don’t take stool softeners, you won’t poop for weeks.

23. Boobs leak. And they don’t care if there are visitors in the room. Around day 2 or 3, bra pads are extremely necessary.

24. All the pregnancy books tell you to pack this and that in your bag. I even went out and bought a nightgown and robe to bring with me. Not necessary. I lived in their gowns. I wasn’t about to ruin my new gown with all my blood and… other fluids. In my opinion, all you need is: socks, toiletries, an outfit to go home in, a sleeping nursing bra, bra pads, and some DVDs.

25. Don’t buy a nursing bra until you have the baby. There is no way of knowing what size your boobs will be ahead of time. (And don’t expect them to stay the same size from one hour to the next.) This excludes one sleeping bra. They are thin so just guess a size and it should work. You’ll want it once your boobs start behaving like a leaky faucet and you have to wear bra pads.

26. The first pee after childbirth is the longest pee of your life. It also takes a lot on concentration and it’s awkward because your nurse is there to help.

27. When they put your baby on your chest the very first time, it’s very odd. On one hand you want to hug him and stare at him. On the other hand, you are very aware that he is covered in white stuff and he’s still attached to something that is still inside you. So you kind of just lay there awkwardly while the rest goes down. And have no fear, your baby will look MUCH cuter in about 30 minutes.

28. Even when the seconds are slowly ticking and you’re on your second episode of Home Improvement and third episode of Cash Cab, time still flies. Take notes if you want to remember it.

29. The hospital runs on weird hours. They bring breakfast around 7:30 and dinner around 5:30. I don’t know why they think we function on those hours. Many a pot roast has been wasted because mommas aren’t ready for dinner at 5:30.

30. It’s a blur. It’s crazy. It’s not easy. But it is the best day of your life!

September 23, 2010 at 7:34 am 11 comments

The Reveal: The Themeless Nursery

I’ve been talking about the nursery for months. You’ve given advice, links, and opinions. You’ve asked for pictures several hundred times and have been (semi) patient when I told you to wait. Now the day is finally here. I’m going to show you Jansen’s room.

There is so much love in this room. I’m not a decorator, I will never pretend to be. But I think this room rocks. People tipped their heads in concern when I said I wanted to paint the walls bright green. They hesitated when I said I wanted to take off the closet doors and hang turquoise curtains. But I had a vision. A vision of bright colors that didn’t include farm animals or trucks or footballs. A nursery without a theme. I am 100% satisfied with the way it turned out!

Many many thanks to Lauren for taking pictures of the nursery last weekend while I was sleeping. She took some fantastic pictures. There will be a changing pad on the dresser but that was in our room since Jansen is currently sleeping in a bassinet by our bed.

Enjoy!

 

So? What do you think?

September 13, 2010 at 7:40 am 40 comments

A House Full Of Talent

I like to brag on my dog. Sometimes she is really smart. Dont get me wrong, sometimes she is a complete fool and I wonder how she functions… but I think that all dogs have that gene. I swear though, sometimes she is a genius.

Rookie loves ice. She thinks it’s a treat, which helps us save a buck or two on Milkbones and Scooby Snacks! But sometimes she’ll come to the fridge and act like she really wants a piece, and then she’ll just drop it on the floor and walk away. So I say, “No ma’am. You asked for that ice, you’re going to eat that ice. Now come here and get it.” And she will. She’ll put her head down and slowly walk to the ice and start chomping away. (And please don’t tell me that ice is bad for their teeth. She’s been eating ice since she was a puppy and the vet always tells us what great teeth she has. So you’re wrong.)

My favorite Rookie trick is when I tell her to go get Stephen and she does. Sometimes she is more successful than others, I think she’s learning that she has to fuss at him, she can’t get run over to him and stare. We don’t read minds.

Last night I took a nice warm bubble bath. Of course it wasn’t too great because I’m the size of a hippo and hippos aren’t meant to sit in standard sized bathtubs. So while there may have been warm water and bubbles, only about 35% of my body was submerged. At one point I needed Stephen to come in there. (We’re married. He’s allowed to see his hippo in the bathtub.) I knew from the sounds I heard in the background that he was doing the dishes and there would be no way that he’d hear me yell his name. However, I also knew that Rookie gets really nervous when I yell and starts fussing, I realized I could use that to my advantage. “STEPHEN.” I yelled. Rookie came running to the closed bathroom door and started fussing. “Hey Rookie. Where’s daddy? Go get Stephen! Go get Stephen.” And off she went, her little toenails tapping on the tile floor. I could hear her fuss getting further away.

About 10 seconds later I heard Stephen’s voice, “What’s wrong? Show me. Where’s Chelsea?” He got closer to the bathroom. “Chelsea? Are you okay?” I was grinning ear to ear, “Did she really just go get you?” He told me that yes, she walked into the kitchen and started fussing at him and walked this way. Seriously, that never gets old.

But I’m happy to say that Rookie is not the only one in Hurst Castle that can do cool tricks. Turns out, this little bun in my oven has a fun party trick. (Although, due to the nature of the party, Stephen will be the only one invited.) At this stage in my pregnancy, he’s pretty fully developed. He can hear and taste. He can feel temperature. He’s like a real human baby, only he’s trapped in my uterus. I’ve read that sometimes they’ll respond to your voice or other sounds at this stage. While that sounds cool, I didn’t believe that it would be true.

It’s true.

As I was soaking my hippo body, I popped my toe against the side of the bathtub. I like to do this. I’m a habitual knuckle cracker. When I did, my belly jumped. Up until that point, Jansen had been pretty still. I was almost certain that he was asleep. But I knew I saw my belly jerk and I wondered if the timing was a coincidence or if he heard me pop my toe. So I tried it again. I popped my thumb under water. Sure enough, he jumped again. I was giddy. Besides me pushing on my belly to get him to move, this is the first real interaction I’ve had with him. He hears me and responds! So that’s when I called Stephen. I knew I couldn’t just tell him about this and not try to show him. You just couldn’t believe how cool it is.

Once he arrived in the bathroom with Rookie, I told him what happened. I tried to do it again but all of my knuckles were popped, so Stephen decided he’d try. He knelt down and stuck his hands in the water. I laid really still and he popped his finger. It was a quiet pop and there was no reaction. It wasn’t enough to scare him. (Is it mean that we get our kicks from scaring our child??) So he tried a thumb. Popping a thumb under water is loud, and it proved to be loud enough to make Jansen pop up from his nap and jerk my belly up.

It was amazing. I can’t even put into words how cool it was. He is like a REAL baby with REAL reactions and emotions (anger… I’m sure he experienced some fierce anger). It was just so fun to see a direct cause and effect with him. It totally made my night.

Now can anyone figure out a way to translate to him that the same evil woman who is scaring him during his precious nap is the same women who is housing and feeding him? I can’t have my child hating me already, that’s what the teenaged years are for.

August 18, 2010 at 9:08 am 8 comments

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