Saturday, February 21, 2015

favorite baby prep ideas

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Whether you are pregnant or growing your family through adoption, expecting a child definitely takes it's toll - I realize you are already drained. And I hate to be the one to tell you this, but this is nothing compared to the exhaustion that's on it's way. With two of my best friends joining me in this new life of motherhood, (one welcomed a baby boy in November, and the other is expecting her baby girl in June), I've been thinking back on what I would do in advance to prepare for a baby if I were a first time mom again. So here's my list of suggestions that will ultimately make the newborn twilight zone a tiny bit more sane and manageable, which in turn allows you to enjoy that short phase more. Only take on the ones that speak to you and forget the rest. Well, actually, I lied. There is one must-do that I included for's super important so don't skip it.

The purpose here is to simplify and prep now so your life is easier later. I promise you'll thank me.

Decide now which mom friend you're gonna call or text when (not if) you have a strange mommy or baby question, need a good cry, or just a pep talk. Let them know they're your "person" - maybe with a coffee and donut in hand as a bribe? - and make sure they'll be pleasant when (again, not if) a need arises at 3 am. 

Download a baby care app on your phone. It's convenient for tracking diapers (wet vs. dirty), frequency of feedings, which side you nursed on, baths, naps, etc. since your brain will be on hiatus especially the first few weeks. This is also helpful for pediatrician visits. Instead of a blank stare when they ask "how many times a day is she pooping?" you can just refer to your app. I used the Total Baby app. 

Also - we STILL use a great lullaby and noise app called Sleepy Sounds. It's nice to have it with me whenever I might need it - in the car, at a hotel, etc. 

Do something to pamper yourself. Mani/pedi, hair trim/color, massage, facial, shopping in Target alone (this would be my pick!) - or all of the above! :)  Because lets face it - becoming a mom means you will often be putting yourself at the bottom of the list.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015


I can't even believe I'm writing this right now, but my kid is ONE. I have a one year old. I've been a mom for 12 months. WHAT.

Funny how all the stereotypical parental sayings are turning out to be one-hundred percent accurate.
"They just grow up so fast."
"Parenting is the toughest job there is."
"It'll be the best thing that's ever happened to you."
ALL TRUE. I guess that's why people say them. Because they're true.

This first birthday has created a strange mixture of feelings inside me. Disbelief/happiness/sentimental to the max/pride/joy/compulsive need to remember everything and take note of all the ways she's still little. But mostly, happiness. 

There are times when I think, how can it be a year already? Weren't we just taking our last drive as a twosome to the hospital to meet this baby? Then on other days it feels like she's always, always been a part of our lives, and how can it possibly be only one year? It's definitely bittersweet. I'm purposely making a point to not describe it as "sad." Being present in the life of my growing, happy, healthy child is nothing to be sad about. (Thank you Kelle Hampton at Enjoying the Small Things blog for this post that opened my eyes to seeing my baby's growth in a whole new, contended kind of light.)

I still wake up surprised that this is my gloriously messy life. Constant exhaustion from the job that never ends. The job that I never, ever want to end because there's a perpetual ray of bright joy pushing through the dark clouds that can easily creep into motherhood.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

The Vintage Honey Shop {a teething necklace review}

I distinctly remember when I was no longer able to wear my favorite jewelry pieces, especially the gold necklace I received for my first Mother's Day that has my daughter's name engraved on it. It's a piece I LOVE and would wear every second if I knew my (almost) one year old wouldn't rip it right off my neck! Aven was right around four months old when she became quite the grabby little thing and also began teething, so everything ended up in her mouth. I started searching for some alternative jewelry options and discovered The Vintage Honey Shop on Etsy. Their handmade fabric teething necklaces are fun for moms to wear and safe for babies to chew on. Win-win!

My first warning: The hardest part is picking a necklace. Honestly - there are so many pretty fabrics to choose from it's nearly impossible to narrow down to a few a favorites.

Once you order, it ships very quickly. (yay....happy mail!)

Second warning: Despite your excitement, you may actually hesitate to rip open the packaging because it comes so beautifully wrapped! I had to snap this picture just to prove my point.