Postpartum Must Haves

Postpartum can be a roller coaster & anything you can do to make life a little easier or comfier is a no brainer. Below are 10 of my postpartum must haves this time around!

  1. After Ease drops – this tincture helps with afterbirth contractions that typically become more painful with each consecutive pregnancy. I added a few drops to my water before breastfeeding & I noticed a big difference when I used it versus when I forgot.
  2. Frida Mom Ice Maxi Pads – These are AWESOME. I know at the hospital they give you ice packs but i found these to work SO much better, colder, lasted longer – highly recommend.
  3. Cute Button Down Pajamas – It’s easy to feel really frumpy & gross postpartum, none of your clothes fit, you want to wear something comfy & easy to breastfeed in. Treat Yo Self & get yourself some cute soft pajamas, you won’t regret it.
  4. Heating Pad – I tucked this into my hospital bag. Depending on your labor you can definitely feel like you got hit by a train. Although my labor was significantly quicker & less dramatic this time around, once my epidural wore off my back was SO sore. I don’t know if it was from the epidural itself, or if it was from a way I was laying, either way a heating pad can offer relief if the advil just isn’t cutting it!
  5. Placenta Capsules – this is by far my top postpartum must have! I encapsulated my placenta my first pregnancy & did it again this time around. Although still not widely practiced here in the US, placenta encapsulation is extremely popular in Eastern Medicine – benefits include: replenishing Iron stores in your body, decreased postpartum depression, decreased anxiety, increased energy, increased milk supply. Last pregnancy I wasn’t certain that the pills helped, I felt good but I didn’t know if the pills were part of that. This time it was our second day home & I remember this feeling coming over me of just wanting to bawl. And I hadn’t taken any of my pills yet, Chris suggested I take one & see. Within two hours I felt SO much better. I felt like myself. Now I take 2-3 daily. I notice a boost in energy & mood when I take them. If you’re interested in encapsulating your placenta but don’t know where to start, I have found that often times doulas will offer encapsulation services!
  6. Nursing Tanks – I like these from H&M they come in a lot of colors / prints & are fairly affordable.
  7. A good water bottle – I personally couldn’t live without my hydroflask, I love ICE cold water so this bad boy serves me well. I’m never without it. When I’m breastfeeding I’m incredibly thirsty & it’s one of the best ways to keep your milk supply up.
  8. Nipple Cream – I used this nipple cream when I was breastfed William. A little 1oz jar will last you for so long.
  9. Hakka Pump – Breast pumps can be SO pricey – this little silicone pump from amazon is a great snag. It’ll run you under $15 & just put it on the opposite breast while feeding & it’ll catch the let down. However it’s not great if you have an oversupply of milk as it can cause your oversupply to be worse.
  10. Tap Light – this little light is one of my absolute favorites. In fact I often gift it to new mamas. It is super light weight, cordless, and can be dimmed & changed from warm to cool lighting. I packed it in my hospital bag this time & I loved having instead of having to turn on the aggressive hospital lighting. Once we’re home I keep it on my bedside table for middle of the night feeds & in fact we still use the one we got for William two years ago!

5 Ways to Beat the Heat with a Toddler

It’s officially summer & San Francisco already had it’s first heat wave of the year. Temperatures got up into the 90’s which is about 30 degrees higher than our usual summer temps! Keeping a toddler entertained as well as trying to get them to sleep when it’s 90 degrees in your apartment is no joke. So in the spirit of summer I thought I’d share some ways to beat the heat with a toddler & share some photos from the heat wave & the weekend we spent enjoying the heat at my brother’s house.

  1. Water tables – these are an awesome investment! We got this one for William’s birthday. And it was a serious lifesaver during the heat wave. I highly recommend water tables – they are fairly affordable & provide so much entertainment for toddlers. Even when it’s a little too chilly to be playing in the water William has a great time playing with the table without the water. He loves putting the balls down the track & finding things in the yard that can go in the water table. If you live somewhere remotely warm I’d totally invest in a water table.
  2. Popsicles – pair a Popsicle with a water table and you’ve got yourself one happy toddler, enough said!
  3. Baby wipes in the fridge – talk about a quick & inexpensive way to cool off. This is such an easy trick to make your baby or toddler or even yourself just slightly more comfortable in the heat.
  4. Stroller fan – this is a good gadget to have if you live somewhere that experiences a fair amount of heat. This is perfect for car rides where kiddos don’t always get the best airflow in those hot car seats especially facing backward. You can also clip it onto a stroller.
  5. My final tip for beating the heat is to seek out AC wherever possible. Libraries are a great free place to take a toddler to try to get some reprieve from the heat. Even just an hour wandering around the grocery store or target was a great way to get out of our stifling apartment. So if you have a membership to a museum, a local library you’ve been wanting to check out or if your kids are old enough a movie theater these are all great places to try and escape the summer heat, especially if you’re living somewhere without AC like we are!
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I said I’d never; but I already have…

As a new mom this phrase, I said I’d never but, I already have, speaks to me. I’ve just barely dipped my toes in this motherhood journey & I’ve already quickly realized that you can have all these grandiose ideas about parenthood & how you plan to raise your babies & sometimes you have to throw things out the window.

“I said I’d never but I already have” pretty much encompasses how our first week of parenting went. We never planned to formula feed. We had mixed feelings on introducing pacifiers, we certainly never anticipated spending time in the NICU . In some ways I’m thankful that our journey forced us to toss our plans out the window & just move forward.

One of my biggest I said I never woulds – the Google machine. As an ER nurse I know googling random medical questions is a cardinal NO NO. In fact it’s one of the fastest ways to get an eyeroll in an emergency room. As a new mom I found myself struggling to fall back asleep after Will’s 5am feeding, knowing he’d be awake again in 90 minutes. So, I unhealthily spent most of that early morning time on Google: wondering if his baby acne was something more, if his head looked too flat, if I should worry that he favors looking to one side and on and on. Every nurse bone in my body would yell at me to stop! Usually by day break I would have talked myself down… Once William started sleeping through the night I found myself not doing it quite as much but every once and awhile I’ll find myself scrolling through a mom forum discussing things that I know I don’t need to worry about it typing something absurd into Google!

I think motherhood is all about walking this line of sticking to your guns but also making concessions on things when it’s what is needed. We weren’t super into the idea of pacifiers, but in the NICU they use them all the time for the babies, especially during procedures. I wasn’t about to sent him some of that comfort because of what I’d been told in a breastfeeding class. So our “no pacifiers” went straight out the window. And guess what? Life moved on. He continued to breastfeed without issue despite what lactation consultants would tell us and ironically at nearly 7 months William has little to no interest in pacifiers

What are some concessions you had made early on in motherhood? What are other things that you don’t budge on?

I know there will be more. Probably today. We’re leaving this morning for Miami & then tomorrow we’re heading to the Caribbean for a week. Wish us luck.

Six Months

Six months. Half a trip around the sun. I feel like all of the sudden my little baby isn’t such a little baby anymore (cue the tears!). Even though he’s still physically fairly little, only weighing in at 15 pounds. This month seemed like William took a huge developmental leap. He has figured out to army crawl around, he learned to whisper when he babbles – which to be honest, is hilarious. He started the journey of solid foods. One of the biggest changes I’d say is how much more cuddly he’s become. He’s never been a super snuggly baby, but now when he gets tired he’ll lay his little head on your shoulder and totally nuzzle in. As much as I wish time would slow down & I say it in every single one of these monthly updates, this month William has seemed to grow up so much & it honestly makes me so excited to see what this cool little guy is gonna be like. We have a big month coming up, William will be going on his first international trip, plus we’ll be heading to Austin for Thanksgiving, needless to say his seven month update will be here before I even know it.

5 months

Time is flying! I feel like I blinked and it’s October. This month William went on his first plane ride, discovered the possibilities of rolling over & sleeping on his tummy. He continues to babble & learned how to blow spit bubbles. His budding friendship with his fur sisters is just about the cutest thing I’ve seen. I can’t get enough of his tender curiousty with the world around him.

Newborn Essentials

I thought I would put together a list of a few things that we found ourselves Amazon Priming to our house in the first few weeks of having William home. Even though I thought I was well prepared to have baby come, I found myself realizing we really needed a few things I hadn’t thought of or I had under estimated how many of certain items I needed.

Night light – This is probably my number one recommendation. I LOVE this night light.After our first night home with baby I realized we desperately needed some kind of light, a quick Amazon search led me to this bad boy, with 4.5 stars & 1200 reviews, I had this at my doorstep the next day & have used it ever since. Not only is it wireless, ultra light weight & small, making it completely portable. You control it by merely tapping & when you hold your finger down the light brightens or dims. You are also able to easily toggle between both warm & cool. It’s perfect for late night feedings, providing enough light to change a diaper but not so bright it disturbs your newborn.

Changing pad covers – I had purchased a pack of 3 of these thinking oh that should be enough. No. It wasn’t. I went ahead and order two more packs of 3. In the first week Will had peed on the 3 we had & I realized unless I was doing laundry daily a pack of 3 wasn’t going to cut it. These are realatively inexpensive & you don’t have to feel guilty tossing one if a blowout happens.

Plain Onesies – We learned our son hates being hot. So all those adorable zip up pj’s I had stocked up on, paired with a swaddle made him way too warm at night. So I found myself using just plain long sleeve body suits. We still use them today, nearly 5 months out. They’re plain white or grey so if there’s a blow out I don’t think twice if I feel like I need to toss it. I also keep these in the diaper bag, or the car as a back up outfit.

Gripe Water aka life saver. Whether it’s hiccups that won’t quit, or colicky gas pains this magic liquid is amazing. I think it’s nice to have in your arsenal for days when warm baths, leg exercises, burping just doesn’t cut it.

Finger nail scissors – I was gifted these baby scissors at my shower by another momma. They make the incredibly intimidating task of trimming your babies nails manageable. With a curved design and blunted tip you can feel comfortable that you won’t accidentally cut those tiny fingers or toes.

Head scrubber– This little silicone scrubber is a great way to prevent cradle cap and to clean eczema prone skin! Initially we used a little hairbrush to clean Will’s head but he hated it. I found this handy tool on amazon & swear by it. There’s no more crying when it comes to scrubbing his head.

I think any of these would make for a great addition to a baby shower gift! Let me know what some of your must have items were!!

 

 

4 months

William turned four months old on Monday. This month was a big one, we went on our first family vacation to Calistoga. Will got to swim for the first time & he loved it! At the end of the month he mastered rolling over!! And he has continued to sleep though the night (hallelujah!) Although I will mention that now that he knows how to roll over he occasionally ends up on his belly or in a section of the crib he isn’t used to so he will occasionally wake up & need some assistance getting back into the middle of the crib, but he goes right back to sleep. William also had his first true belly laugh this month! It was the best. He also has definitely increased his awareness of Juno & Peggy & he’s been enjoying petting Juno & he takes getting licked like a champ haha. He also transitioned out of 0-3month clothes & is now in 3-6month.

Month 5 has a lot lined up for us – William will be going on his first plane ride, I’ll be heading back to work & I have a feeling his first tooth with pop through!

This weekend we are headed to my parents for a last little summer getaway.

3 months

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And just like that William is 3 months old. In some ways it feels like it has completely flown by & he looks huge to me & in other ways it feels like so much time has passed! It feels like forever ago I was pregnant, even though I still have the linea negra to show it wasn’t all that long ago! This month Will has started to grab at toys and pull them to his face, he’s getting more comfortable at tummy time & everyday seems like he’s finding a new part of his voice. Last week he discovered he could scream(!!). He continues to sleep through the night (bless him!). & he’s taking 2-3 naps per day. He’s also becoming a lot more aware of our dog & cat & has taken to petting/grabbing Juno’s fur. He’s our happy little guy & everyday I love him more!

Below are a few outtakes from his 3 month photos!

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Weekly Roundup

I finished week 3 of BBG last week & I’m LOVING it! I’m so excited to start week 4 tomorrow.  I’m doing the program with two friends & it’s so much easier when you have other people keeping you on track. We don’t do the actual workouts together, but we keep one another motivated with a group chat.

This pumping bra is awesome! I ordered it on amazon & highly recommend it. So if you’re a new momma & are looking for a great & cheap pumping bra check this one out.

This weekend we took William out to brunch & he did so well, he was just sitting on Chris’ lap just taking it all in & then decided he’d spend the second half of brunch snoozing.

Chris & I started watching The Crown on Netflix & it’s SO good. I wasn’t sure if I would like it but the show is really well done. We realized we knew very little about the Royal Family at the start of the series & each episode we end up googling something that comes up.

We got William a little activity seat (it’s what he’s sitting in on in the first photo) & he looks SO big to me! He’s still a little small for the seat & doesn’t love it right now, but when he’s in there holding his head up he already looks so grown up!

I’m starting to plan out my work schedule when I return & even though I’m not going back to work until mid September, I have to submit my requests for my schedule at the end of this month & it makes it feel closer than it is. It’s so bittersweet thinking about having to go back to work. It makes me so sad to think about leaving William for 11 hours at time but I’m admittedly getting a little stir crazy being at home with not much on the calendar

Chris & I went on a date this weekend, we went out to dinner & to a Bob Schneider concert. It felt so nice to get out for a few hours.

Below are some of the workout songs I’ve been loving. I usually listen to “Firestone” station on Pandora & then I get ideas for what to put on my Spotify playlist.

hope everyone has a great week!

Weekly round up!

I’m trying something new & am posting some of the highlights from the week before along with some photos.

The best moment last week was waking up at 7am & realizing that Will had slept through the night!!! It was amazing. He slept through the night twice last week & the nights he didn’t he slept from 7pm until 5am! I have to say I feel like a whole new person getting so much sleep last week. I’m definitely hoping for more of the same this week.

My go to breakfast that is great for breastfeeding mamas has hands down been oatmeal, either regular or rolled oats. I love having it in the morning usually after Will goes down for his first nap. I usually top it with cut strawberries & walnuts & some brown sugar.

I’ve started working out again & this week is week 3 of BBG. I love that it’s only 28 minutes & it’s such a good workout. I’ve had to make some modifications but overall I’ve been able to keep up with it, plus I’m doing the 12 weeks with two other people so it’s nice to have some accountability.

Along with working out I’ve been making an effort to take Juno out for walks alone in the evening. It’s nice that the sun sets well after William is in bed & the weather has been really nice. So it’s been a great way to get some fresh air & clear my head after busy days with my busy boy! The photos of the USF cathedral were taken on my walk Friday night.

This might sound silly but I bought these ice cube trays last week because our old ones kept cracking and leaking water & honestly they are AMAZING. I remember listening to Gretchen Rubin’s podcast Happier & she would talk about how simple upgrades can make you happier & it’s so true. I love having ice water & I was drinking less water because I didn’t want to deal with our annoying old trays. Well $12 later problem solved!!

We took William to Costco for the first time. Chris & I don’t venture to Costco all that often although we have a few set things that we like to get there & it was time for a restock. Costco on a Saturday in general can be a nightmare but I feel like the Costco in San Francisco is made worse with the crowds & city size isles. Will did awesome though!! he was awake the whole time just taking everything in.

Will has been LOVING the play mat we got him a few weeks ago! It’s so fun to watch him swing his arms & try to grab the hanging toys, he also is such a little kicker that the paino part of the mat is great (although the same song on repeat can only get a liiiittttlllleee annoying haha!) If you have a newborn & are looking for an inexpensive activity mat I highly recommend this one.

We don’t have too much planned for the beginning of the week but the second half of the week Chris’ parents will be here visiting so we’re excited for that!

Hope everyone had a great weekend.