Sunday, March 29, 2015

Pregnancy: 29 Week Update

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How far along? 29 Weeks

Size of Baby:  Butternut squash. Is it just me, or is that like....THE SIZE OF A REAL BABY.  

Weight Gain: Haven't checked since 26 weeks. Another week and I'll find out the damage this month. 

Nursery: Well, one of the items on my Someday List was to clean out LW's closet, and I did that this week! All newborn-y items were moved over to Mo's closet. I haven't started the dresser yet so things are a little bit disorganized since I don't have anywhere to put his clothes other than on shelves in the closet. 

Over Christmas we purchased blinds for Mo and LW's rooms but unfortunately they won't work for Mo's room. One has broken from LW's room and one in Mo's room clicks...which will not do. So next weekend Hubs will be tasked with taking the two broken blinds down and installing the one good blind from Mo's room into LW's room. I'll return the two broken blinds and use the store credit to find an alternative for Mo's room. The blinds we bought were on clearance because the store was going to discontinue them. While I am there I may find some curtain rods with a few coupons as well so we can get all of the window treatments up and ready. 

Also, WE SOLD OUR HOUSE! Pending a few final details, we will be able to begin moving our furniture over in the next few weeks. That means LW will get the twin bed that has been staging the old house....and it means we will be setting the crib up for Mo :) 

Movement: Hubs thinks because I am so relaxed now being a SAHM that Mo is finally able to be his "true self" which is a WILD MAN! Here I hoped we would get one docile little nugget baby and it's proving not to be true lately based on his actions inside me! He's just bopping all over in there all the time lately. It's kind of fun...but kind of nauseating. 

Symptoms: HEARTBURN!?!?! First time in my life yesterday I had heartburn for hours. What. The. Heck! Of course, I'm cheap and bought the generic brand TUMS to have in the house and they are AWFUL. I ate them all night long when I got up to use the bathroom and my mouth still tastes like chalk. Note to self: Buy the real thing to have on hand. The really good smoothies kind. Because these Costco ones are the worst. (Sorry Costco. Still love you otherwise.) 

My belly band made me feel sick to my stomach yesterday and as soon as I took it off, I felt better. I concluded that I have outgrown it (already) so I just ordered a replacement using Amazon points today. It's not the same brand, but it's the same style - wide back brace/under belly support/over belly support. And it was less than half of the cost of the original. Should have bought this from day 1! 

I'm also swelling a lot lately. Today I made a conscious effort to spend the late afternoon/evening drinking A LOT of water, using the bathroom every time I got the slightest urge and snacking on fruit. My wedding rings have gone from, "I may need to take these off for the rest of the pregnancy" to, "I can't even tell I'm pregnant based on my hands". That's significant! I must drink more water and put my feet up more frequently. Must, must!!!

Cravings: Nothing really this week! Lemonade give me mild heartburn so I haven't really been drinking that and cinnamon rolls just aren't front-of-mind. Nothing is screaming "EAT THIS NOW!" to me this week, which is nice! If I eat too much, I get heartburn too so I am trying to just snack a lot on healthy stuff instead of have "meals". Meals make me feel gross. 

Looking forward to: Meeting our sweet little Mo. I can't wait to see what he looks like. 

Things I can't stop thinking about: The nursery! I am excited to be making strides. We have budgeted and couponed so well that we haven't spent more than a few dollars total on all of the items we need for him from the registry. Items like window treatments will be more expensive, but thankfully the savings from purchasing the other items with Amazon rewards points and Kohl's coupons/Kohl's cash or Jamberry earnings will allow us to buy those other necessary items with ease. It took some serious planning and patience, but was completely worth it!!!! 

By my calculations we have three more weeks of purchasing items from the registry and we're done (at $25/week). Should have just been two after today's purchase (a stroller lock!), but last night LW's humidifier died so he had to take Mo's. Thankfully we have 10ish more weeks before we NEED any of the remaining items

So Darn Lucky

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Knowing our family dynamic is going to change significantly in a few weeks with the arrival of Mo has been on my mind lately. I have been trying to be sure to give LW extra adventure and help him excel at every skill now while I have the time, because I know when Mo arrives I will be a human feed bag again and my patience for "adventure" in the mud or the dog dish will dwindle. 

But, LW isn't the only man in the house that I have been attentive to lately. Bringing a baby into the mix is going to take a lot from my husband too and having the groundwork to a strong, healthy relationship is important now more than ever. This article (http://www.goodhousekeeping.com/life/relationships/advice/a25665/habits-happy-couples/?src=spr_FBPAGE&spr_id=1443_161413181) gave me the warm and fuzzies because it reminded me how lucky we are. 

Yesterday Hubs and I went to the aquarium with some friends who are visiting from out of town. The whole drive down Hubs and I talked. It wasn't just "we should save this much money for this" or "we should remember to do that" typical chores talk, it was genuine, wonderful conversation. Moments like that remind me that we are so damn lucky. It is such a blessing to have a completely honest marriage. Even when he bugs me, I can tell him exactly what he did. I can talk about what bothers me and he is respectful of that. He listens. 

On the flip side, as a pregnant mom right now, I'm sure many of you understand when I say that I don't have the longest fuse. I'm not as patient as I normally am or as understanding at times...and Hubs doesn't have a problem giving me gentle reminders. He is sincere about it but he is honest and tells me when my attitude is getting out of line. 

I'm so thankful to have that kind of man in my life. I know we aren't perfect and marriage isn't always easy, but one thing I do know is we both work for it. We both do all we can to give the other what they need. And, we both do everything we can for our boys. It's true now before Mo is in our arms and will continue to be true when he is here and squealing, spitting and pooping everywhere.  

While many of you busily and excitedly prepare for a new arrival, be sure to take an assessment of the relationship you have with the man who helped put that baby in your belly. Because he is the one who will be up with you on sleepless nights. He will be the one you beg to hold the baby for five more minutes so you can shower. He will be the one who is your cheerleader to keep breastfeeding. To keep trying a new swaddle technique. To turn the house upside down trying to find the favorite paci. 

Build him up, because he gave you the most incredible gift in the world. He made you a mom....and you gave it right back by making him a dad. Give that man a smooch and remind him how special it is to have him in your life today and every day. 

I love you, Hubs! Thanks for being my main man. I can't wait to see what being a family of four is like with you.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Someday List

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My first few days as a SAHM were pretty surreal. The weather in Chicago went from winter to spring overnight, the air smelled cleaner, the house seemed bigger...everything really felt ideal.

And then reality hit.

Kidding, but really, there were a few days of "honeymoon" period where LW and I did everything and went everywhere and now things are settling into a nice little routine for us.

Every morning, we start by having breakfast together, followed by him watching some Daniel Tiger while I do the breakfast dishes and dinner dishes from the previous evening. Then I head upstairs to sneak a shower while he's still enthralled in Daniel. Around 9:30-10:00am we head to an open gym, library or friend's house many days during the week to blow off a little steam. He falls asleep on the way home, takes a solid nap and that's when I can do as I wish.

This is the "golden" time, as all moms know and understand. Nap time is the one quiet, blissful, beautiful time during the day where we can eat candy bars without hiding behind the pantry door or do our nails without also being a jungle gym.

Every day I have a list of things I plan to accomplish. I love having lists - even if I put things on it just to cross them off. I feel so accomplished watching my list dwindle.

In addition to my "Daily Chores" list, I now keep a "Someday List". This list is full of those tedious, seemingly impossible, challenge-packed tasks that when you realize they need to be done you chuckle to yourself and say "Someday". Someday. As in....never. Me telling myself "Someday" might as well be me telling myself "No chance in Hell I will ever actually do that".

WELL, I've actually started the list. AND I plan on doing the items that are on it! Because....if an item is on my list, I mean business. If I share mine...will you share yours?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Newborn Cloth Diaper Organizer

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Mo's diapers are ready!!!!!! I'm so excited. Walking by them in the nursery every time I am upstairs gives me happy feelings all over.
I love cloth diapering and started with LW when he was 9 days old. That seemed like an eternity so this time around, we may come home from the hospital with Mo in cloth. Sposies stink (literally) and blowouts are probably my #1 for most disgusting thing on the planet. Especially with newborn poop. Ohh gag.

When I started talking to a friend about cloth diapering before LW was born, she said the best advice she'd received was to have a newborn stash...and I have to say that has been some of the best advice we received as well! Thank you, Lindsey!!! Not only can you use newborn prefolds all throughout your cloth diapering journey (and beyond! Hello, window rags) via pocket or Flip inserts...newborns poop like A HUNDRED TIMES A DAY. So buying disposables during that time can be nearly $100/month! Ain't nobody got time (or cash) fo' dat!

This is what's in my (robust) newborn stash:
18 Gerber prefolds – these are HUGE and take some creative folding from the beginning, but they don't hold much pee so they're really only useful for newborns.

24 OsoCozy size 1 prefolds – OsoCozy makes the best prefolds. Period. That's my opinion because that's what we use but they're the darn-tootin' BEST! And now after LW has been using them for almost two years Mo is getting the softest, fluffiest, most wonderful feeling prefolds ever. What a lucky duck!

3 Snappis – Mo has to share. LW is still in prefolds too (size 2) so he only gets 3. We'll just be extra careful to try not to lose any.

12 NB AIO – These I have a variety of brands. Mo got his very own brand new Thirsties NB AIOs (thank you, Hubs!) and will use LW's old Rumparooz Lil Joeys (DID YOU KNOW they sell these at Kohl's now!? HELLO 30% off + Kohl's Cash + coupons – MAMAS GET ON THAT NOW!), BumGenius, GroVia and some off-brands sprinkled in.

Lil Joeys were my favorite AIO with LW as a newborn, and I think Thirsties new NB AIO are VERY similar in style, so I have a feeling we'll love those too. The new Thirsties NB AIOs will definitely be in our hospital bag so Mo's newborn photos will be taken while he wears them <3 (OMG I'm melting just thinking about that).

BG NBs were my least favorite with LW because he was such a heavy wetter from the start - one little pee and he was leaking out of those puppies. BUT, Mo may be different entirely so I will be using them on him.

10 NB Covers – These are primarily Thirsties size 1, but a Real Nappies, gDiapers and a Bumkins snuck in somehow :)


I have the bottom shelf filled with OS things that Mo will have - He's gotten some of his own brand new BG pockets as gifts and LW's old hook & loop flips were passed down to him, since LW now thinks it's a party to rip them off vs. wear them. Burp cloths are down there too, as you can see. This will eventually be where I shift some things around so I can put his OsoCozy prefolds but until it is closer to his arrival date, LW will keep using them.
If you have any questions about my stash - please comment below or on Facebook!! I love to talk diapers!

***All links to Amazon on this blog are now affiliated. Thanks!!***

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Pregnancy: 28 Week Update

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How far along? 28 Weeks


Size of Baby:  Large eggplant! LARGE! 

Weight Gain: Last checked at 26 weeks was 14lb. Hopefully not too much more than that :) 

Nursery: IT IS STARTING TO BECOME A ROOM! I brought the paint home from the old house to start the dresser (so I work in small steps, okay...) and put together the diaper cart. I organized it and prepped all of his tiny newborn cloth diapers...... It is BECOMING A BEDROOM!!!! This week I will share what I have in the diaper cart. 

Movement: This morning I made a green smoothie for Hubs and I that was pretty strong and Mo was BOUNCING ALL AROUND IN THERE! It was so fun to sit in church and feel all of his kicks and wiggles while I drank my smoothie. The recipe (albeit misspelled because I'm the best at paying attention when I write things...) is on @whatifeedmykid

Symptoms: Zzzzzzzz. Let me SLEEP! I've been alright during the day this week, but at night I hit the pillow like a ton of bricks and I sleep HARD. It's nice though because I wake up feeling rested in the morning! 

Other than that, wearing my belly support band makes a huge difference in how 'heavy' I feel. It really keeps my posture in check and supports the weight of sweet, sweet Mo. That was money very well spent

Cravings: This week has been a little weird. At one point I actually text my girlfriends that if Aldi didn't have Cheetohs puffs the next day when I shopped I may die. But then by the time I was shopping I saw the cheesy puffs and had no interest. However, I did elbow my way through a pile of cheese danishes to find the one remaining box of their cinnamon rolls. Totally worth the struggle. 

Lemonade is also still a favorite. I'm down to one (gigantic) glass a day mainly because I have a personal goal to drink more actual water. I try to save my lemonade for a "good" time, like when I am driving somewhere alone so I can really enjoy it or after bedtime. I'm mean, I don't share. 

Oh, and Cadbury mini eggs. The chocolate ones. No cream. Get that crap out of here. Straight chocolate. Yeahhhhh buddy. They jumped right into my cart while I ran errands two days in a row. Who am I to stop them!? 

Looking forward to: Everything. I'm so genuinely happy and I just want to tell everyone. I'm so dang happy and thankful for the women in my life who make every day better and better. I have the best friends on the planet. 

Things I can't stop thinking about: His bedroom. I placed the diaper cart right by the door, so every time I walk out of LW's room I get a little glance of it as I walk by and I want to squeal. TINY BABY THINGS!!!!!! So adorable. 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Don't Say Baby!!!

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I found the idea for this game on Pinterest and used it for a shower I hosted a few weeks ago. 

That got me thinking, I bet I could make more of these and sell them!! This is an order I created for a baby girl shower and I love how it turned out!!! So sweet and girly. 

If you are hosting a baby (or bridal!) shower soon and would like one, please let me know! 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Favorite Toddler Sensory Play

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I am a big believer in sensory play. While cuddling on the couch to watch a favorite show is always nice and going to the park with friends is fun, sensory play is another important part of our day.

Some of LW's favorite sensory activities are the simplest, too. The snow has melted now, but there were a few days this winter where we were able to get outside and roll around in the snow. Feeling the cold and hearing the crunch under his feet are sensory!
Since the snow has melted, it's left LOTS of puddles, mud, stinky piles of rotting leaves and crisp, dead grass. Letting him explore the yard can be REALLY messy, but it's always rewarding. He gets so much from just being allowed to experience nature, no matter how disgusting.
Indoor sensory play is fun too, and really handy for cold or rainy days when we can't get outside. A friend told me her son loves to play in a container of beans and it gave me the idea to use pasta! I was cleaning out our pantry and found a few packages of shells and cheese that had made not one, but two moves with us...so I made the executive decision that the cheese would best be served to the garbage can and the shells could become our new sensory activity.

LW is OBSESSED with this activity. He knows where I hide the bin of pasta and always asks me to take it out. The first day we played with the pasta he was wonderful about keeping every shell and noodle in the tub...but since then he's gotten a little careless. I have to watch him very closely with this activity because before I know it, he has a mouth full of raw pasta. Gross.


Giving him measuring cups and spoons allows him to work on some motor skills (pouring from one container to another) and letting him play barefoot encourages the full sensory experience because he ALWAYS climbs in the tub!

What are your favorite toddler sensory activities?