Favorites throughout the first year

Monday, April 29, 2013

1 week until the big 1!

Here are links to all of my "favorites" for the first year

Nursing: Must Haves

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

More about my nursing experience is in this post.

My Pros to Nursing: great nutrition & antibodies to keep him healthy, bonding, 
you can eat whatever you want and still lose weight, it's free!

What I'm looking forward to when i'm no longer nursing: unlimited coffee and wine!

I know I included most of these things in previous "favorites" but I thought I should organize and make a separate "Nursing must have" post.

Boppy- I have 3.  Excessive, perhaps! But I keep one in each car and one in the nursery.  In the beginning I would have one upstairs and one downstairs.  I always had to be sitting with a boppy to nurse.  I know some girls walk around, cook etc while nursing.  There's no way I could do that!  In the last few months I can use pillows, but still prefer a boppy.

Le Mystere Sexy Mama Nursing Bra- So supportive.  And pretty and comfortable!  Get this from Amazon because it's so much cheaper than anywhere else!!  I saved like $30 by using Amazon!

Target Nursing Tanks- My pj top every night for 11 months!  The ones with the buttons work the best for me.  But the one in the picture is ok...a little tight in the chest.

Medela Pump In Style Advanced- I used this for 6 weeks (when we were giving him a bottle once a day with rice cereal in it for reflux) and hated every second of it!  Ha!  As soon as he went on meds and we stopped the rice cereal bottles I stopped pumping (and he never took a bottle again.  Ugh!)  Pumping was not for me.  But this pump was great.  Would totally recommend it.

Microwave steam bags to clean all the bottles and pump parts are a must have too!

Lansinoh Nursing Pads- In the beginning you leak, but that doesn't happen anymore.  I wore these mostly in the first few months.

Winter Clothing Favorites

Carter's clothing and shoe essentials for colder weather:

A little late, since it's spring now, but here are our must-haves for Carter's first winter.  I did have a few other things that he wore once or twice, like a puffy jacket from Zara and a few of the puffy fleece one pieces from Old Navy and Gap but it really didn't snow much so we really didn't need them.

North Face Fleece- He started wearing this in October and still wears it almost every day.  Super easy to put on and the hood is great too. (size 6-12 months)

Ugg Booties- We got these around January and he was in between sizes so we got the 4-5.  They are super easy to put on (and take off).  Super cute and warm and have grippers on the bottom.

Widgeon Fleece- We got this in the fall at a little boutique and it is the best to easily put on (velcro closure) and warmer than the North Face.  And adorable!  He wore this every cold day.

Zutano mittens- The string through the arm holes is key so you don't constantly lose the mittens.

BabyGap Jeans-I couldn't find a pic of his exact jeans he wore all winter...but they are so cute.  Size 6-12 months and they are still fitting but getting a little short.  The elastic waist is key.

Carter's onesies- He wore the long-sleeved ones everyday under everything.

Carter's Footed Sleep & Plays/ PJs- He wore the fleece pjs every night with cotton footed ones underneath them when he stopped wearing sleep sacks.  The 12 month pjs have the gripper feet so he can stand and walk safely too.  (When he was younger, he wore these most days.  He lived in these in December, remember the rotation???)

BabyGap hats- He had a bunch of these and they are so cute and warm.

the first 11 months, a reflection

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

I've been thinking back a lot lately.  One year ago I was 36ish weeks pregnant and dreamy-eyed and naive.  I had no idea how dramatically my life was about to change.

You know when you're going into the hospital that your life is about to change...but really you have no idea.

I still look at pregnant girls and want to tell them that their lives are about to be turned upside-down and give them a little heads up and reality check (see this post)

I know that this isn't the case for everyone.  A few of my friends recently had babies and their experiences have been much different than mine.  Their babies sit in swings and bouncy seats, and don't cry all the time, and they sleep (like all the time...and through the night, starting super early) and they went back to work and their lives haven't changed as dramatically as mine.

I've always been a believer that things happen for a reason and this year I've come to believe that God gives you what you can handle.  And Carter (and his high-maintenance little self) was made perfectly for us.  There were aspects of my life that I had to come to terms with and "let go" of...like always being in control and having everything be perfect.  Carter has shown me that I can't always plan everything out and I have to go with the flow, a bit (because obviously, he's always in control!)

I've also learned about love.  And the ridiculous, all-consuming love that comes with having a baby.  I call him my swimfan, because he's kind of obsessed with me.  But honestly, I'm his swimfan too.  In over 11 months I haven't been away from him for more than a few hours.

But, in a few months this will all change.  I'm going back to work in August and Carter is starting daycare in July. I'm already thinking worrying about how our lives are going to again, change dramatically.

I'm trying to remember this:
Throughout this year I've had different thoughts about being a stay-at home mom and going back to work.  I feel so lucky that I've had the ability to take a year off and still have my job waiting for me and we were ok, financially.  There are days that I really miss working (teaching writing workshop and morning meetings, especially) and I totally miss my friends at school and daily adult chats.  Being a stay-at-home mom is lonely sometimes.

I had no idea that staying at home left you virtually no time for yourself, (especially when your kid doesn't nap!)  And it's honestly the hardest, most exhausting "job."  Those first few months were brutal.  I remember holding a screaming baby and watching Christian leave for work with tears in my eyes feeling completely helpless.  I was jealous of the 15 minutes that he had to himself just in the short ride to work, that was more alone time than I had all day.

I have to say though, sleeping through the night around 6 months made a huge difference, and the older he gets, the more of a routine we have and that makes life much easier (type A-planner remember?!)...it only took like 9 or 10 months to figure it out. ;)

The spring weather has finally arrived and we are outside all the time and loving parks and pushing little cars around and I'm working on my green thumb and planting flowers and making our teeny little outdoor space a little spring-ier!  I'm taking it all in and appreciating this time with Carter.