Newborn Favorites

*Before we start this post, just letting you know that I’m doing a giveaway over on my Instagram page with a couple great baby favorites/items!!

I can’t even believe that baby Flora is about TWO months old, already. When do babies stop being newborns? I’ve read that stops at two months and I’m not ok with that. Can’t she be my newborn for at least a few more months? However, if that phase does truly end at two months (insert crying emoji here), then I guess I need to hurry and tell you about all of my newborn favorites this time around! There have been a lot of things I’ve loved having for my new baby, but I rounded up the ones I’ve noticed I love the very most this time around with our third baby.

MY NEWBORN FAVORITES

LouLou & Company Swaddles

This was my first time buying swaddles from LouLou & Company, and I regret not buying from them before with my other babies. Best. Swaddles. Ever. They’re stretchy, soft and perfect. Flora likes to sleep being wrapped up tight in something, and I’ve found these swaddles are perfect for that. Plus the patterns you can choose from are adorable.

Bibs Binky

I reeeeally wanted Flora to take a binky. Harrison was obsessed with his and Emmett refused one and let’s just say, our experience with a kid who takes a binky was a lot easier then the experience with the kid who doesn’t. I bought a few different brands and let Flora kind of tell us which she liked the most, and this one won, and is coincidentally also the cutest! We have several colors and have been very happy with the soothing they bring our baby.

Mushie Binky Clip

First of all, so cute. There are so many colors to choose from AND the clip is perfect. It’s strong enough to clip onto things, but it’s not so strong that you have to struggle unclipping it. It’s perfect.

Adi’s Babies Bracelets

When I found out Flora was a girl, there was no doubt in my mind that I had to get her several brackets. But where? My cousin recommended Adi’s Babies and I’m beyond thrilled. The quality is awesome, the prices are great and there are so many adorable styles!

Little Poppy Co Bows

Cutest bows you’ll ever find. Serious. I’m a part of their monthly subscription program and I can honestly say that when I get that pink package in the mail every month I am giddy. I’ve never received a bow I didn’t totally love. I’m obsessed with bows, but these are hands down my favorite. There is such a variety and the different styles are all great. I could not recommend this company enough.

Old Navy Jammies

There is something about this style of pajamas that I’m super loving right now. Flora wears these really often. I feel like I sound like a broken record saying this so many times, but really – the selection is awesome and the quality is nice.

Aquaphor Bum Cream

Hey, it’s just stuff you’ve gotta have. I decided to try this one on a whim and I really like it! My kids tend to have very sensitive skin, and this hasn’t irritated any bums in all my time using it.

Mittens

Baby nails are as sharp as knives and they’re real good at scratching up their perfect little faces. When Flora gets mad, her little hands just attack her face and that left her with a lot of sad scratches on her face – some that even bled! So put these mittens on and the problem is solved. Flora is pretty much past wearing these now, but for when they’re being used, they’re incredibly handy.

Milk Snob Nursing Cover

These things are awesome and they have a Disney line! Win, win. I like this particular brand because the fabric is breathable. I enjoy the nursing covers that go around your whole body, so if you need to lift your shirt up, you aren’t exposing your back, you know what I’m saying?

Burts Bees Burp Cloths

I bought these on a whim about a month before Flora was born just because the other burp cloths we had were all a little more ‘boy’ looking than I wanted. Mainly I love these because they are the perfect size! The cute patterns don’t hurt either.

Solly Wrap

I feel like everyone loves these, so just go ahead and add me to the long list of lovers. I don’t know what it is, there’s something just awesome about these particular wraps. They’re sturdy and strong but still lightweight. They’re genius. I love mine.

Kate Quinn Clothes

If you’re looking for the cutest clothing ever with the softest fabric ever, look no further. I truly could not be more pleased with this company. The styles of clothing they offer is amazing and I can’t get over the fabric. It’s so soft and cozy. I have several pieces from them for Flora and the designs on them are incredible. They’re unique and different than anything else you can find anywhere. Just the best of the best.

What are some of your newborn favorites and must haves?

Be the Good

First of all, how great is this t-shirt from Poppy & Dot? I’m in love with the phrase on it. I know my influence on the world, and sometimes even my own little corner of it, is very small – but regardless, I do try really, really hard to be a force for good. To be the good. To be kind. To spread happiness. To be a friend. The world is really chaotic and messy right now, but its comforting for me to remember that there are still good people and good things. I’d just like to remind you — and me — that all you have to do is look for the good and you can still find it. Also, you can be it. Don’t let the darkness of the world dim your unique light. Be the good!!

July 2020

GOOD

  • I feel pretty excited to say that we are in a pretty good rhythm, just a month after having Flora! I could go into lots of detail about this, but I’ll just leave it at that. It feels really good!
  • Harrison and Emmett are dreamboat big brothers. They ADORE their sister. They are so patient and kind with her and they dote on her 24/7. When she screams and cries, they don’t even mind. They give her, her binky all the time. They talk to her in these precious baby voices and they are never far from her. They can’t get enough of her. What makes it even sweeter is that Flora loves them just as much. She is entranced by them and loves to stare at them and she gives them the best smiles.
  • Speaking of that – Flora’s smiles. They deserve their own bullet point because those things are magical.
  • Hamilton is on Disney+ and Craig and I are beyond delighted. Just thrilled. We have been listening to the music non-stop and its the very best.

NOT-SO-GOOD

  • I’m pretty sure Flora has colic. Anywhere between 5 and 10 in the evening she is so unhappy. Nothing can calm her down. She’ll nurse for a while and be ok with it, but then just nothing works. Its so sad. I feel so helpless. From what I’ve read, it doesn’t typically last past 12 weeks old (is this true?) but I just wish that she could feel better even faster. I want my baby happy!! It wears Craig and I out on a nightly basis.
  • The boys hate bedtime. Especially Emmett. We’ve officially entered the phase of them getting out of bed and saying the most random, hilarious things. Heaven help me.
  • The AC in my van broke at the end of the month. My car was so stinkin’ hot, driving in it was torture. We got it fixed this week and it reminded me of how grateful I am for cold air. The price wasn’t necessarily my favorite, but it was absolutely necessary. Getting my kids out of the car and seeing them red in the face and covered in sweat was so sad.

HOME

Ok, real talk. I got behind on home stuff in July. Thats definitely due to having a new baby, but truly we were so bad at Come Follow Me this month and the cleanliness got out of control many times. BUT I have promised myself I’d try really hard to be patient and kind with myself – especially now in this season of life I’m in. We’ll try harder in August and see wha happens!

June 2020

I’m going to go ahead and bet that June will be the best month of all of 2020 for our family. I mean, how do you top the birth of a new, precious baby!? Especially when she’s as perfect, sweet and squishy as Flora! I think between starting the month being very pregnant, tired and just done with pregnancy and then spending the rest of June with a newborn, it’s all felt a little but like a blur. A sleepy, wonderful, magical blur.

GOOD

  • Flora, obviously. You guys, she is perfect. She is beautiful and makes the most adorable squeaky sounds constantly. She loves staring at her brothers and listening to people talk. She is a generally easy baby who sleeps pretty decently and nurses like a champion. She fits into our family seamlessly and honestly I am just so grateful I get to be her mom and that she’s a happy, healthy little girl.
  • I have 3 kids. THREE! That sunk in about a week after having Flora and I’m beaming! All I’ve ever wanted to do is have kids, so being able to grow my family and have another baby be born is just making me feel all the happy feels.
  • Craig had a birthday and Fathers Day! That guy deserves to be celebrated far more than just those two days, but I’m glad that we had those days to celebrate him – even if they were very low key and probably a little boring because we are living the newborn life.
  • I’m still being careful and cautious with social distancing and such, but before Flora was born and a few times afterwards we have been able to spend some time with family and that just feels really good. Especially because coronavirus cases keep on rising so I feel like I may need fo make the decision to be extra careful with my family again.
  • I keep thinking about my doctors and nurses. I’m so thankful for those people and what they do so selflessly for people. For what they did for me. There was one point, ahem, the first time I used the restroom after delivering my baby, that the nurse was helping clean me up, etc, and I just couldn’t help but feel an overwhelming sense of gratitude for her and what she was doing. Those are good, good people.
  • Harrison started soccer this month and oh my heck, it’s the cutest. He is the happiest little athlete I’ve ever seen. The smile never leaves his face while he plays and he is just so dang happy to be on the field. I love his enthusiasm.

NOT-SO-GOOD

  • For about a week and a half after Flora was born, Harrison and Emmett had a rough time. Not with her, not at all (they super aggressively adore her), but with… everything else? It was really hard. They were easily upset, extra emotional and pretty much never listened and would do a lot of things that otherwise, they knew were naughty. I expected some kind of reaction from them – I mean, they’re 4 and 2 and getting a new little sister is a major life change! It just was harder to navigate than I assumed it would be. But we made it through and I’m proud of us!
  • I didn’t get my epidural in time to deliver my baby. So I had an unmedicated birth. I’ll just leave that there.
  • Having a baby during a pandemic and navigating the extra precautions for germs, social distancing, etc. is rough. Its been a little complicated figuring out how to let family meet the baby without feeling like I’m exposing her to things. Theres a lot of feeling pulled to different sides, but Craig and I are doing our very best to listen to our guts and ultimately do what we believe is best, no matter what people say. That isn’t always easy, but we’re getting better at it. I think.

HOME

Newborns bring the most precious spirit into your home. I swear there are extra angels, extra love and extra spirit in your home when a tiny one is there, and I’m trying to be mindful of soaking it all in because I know this time passes fast. As sleepy as we feel and as tricky as it can be to get used to new schedules and a new life, its just magical. We slacked a little with doing Come Follow Me this month, and I kind of feel like thats justified because – you know – newborn. But we still managed to learn new Book of Mormon stories and did our best not to miss family prayer and opportunities to talk about the gospel.

Baby Sister!

Flora

June 11, 2020

Details and birth story coming soon. For now, just know that we are all doing so, so well. Our hearts are full as full can be. We have already been so blessed by having this sweet little girl in our family! I can’t wait to share more of her with you later. In the meantime, I’ll be soaking up all the newborn snuggles, smells and sounds because this is my heaven on earth!

My ECV Experience

On June 4th, Craig and I went into the hospital to get Baby Sister moved from a breech (head up) position to a head down position. This was so I could have a much better chance at vaginal delivery and a VBAC. It was also because we didn’t want to possibly risk another experience like Emmett’s birth, which was a bit scary (thankfully only for a moment). We had a few different options of how to go about this all, but ultimately, Craig and I felt best and most peaceful about attempting to move her, and now that all is said and done, and she’s still head down, I feel that it was all very worth it and I’m glad we had the procedure done.

My experience with an External Cephalic Version, or ECV, was painful, but good. Here is the quick recap of how that day went.

Early in the morning we went to the hospital and got all registered and situated in a labor and delivery room. I got into a gown and was hooked up to the heart monitor to track Sisters heart, and a contraction monitor, just in case. I was hooked to an IV and then my doctor came in to explain to us what was going to happen. He told us about things that could go wrong and how they would handle those situations. An anesthesiologist came in, also just in case I needed to be whisked away to have an emergency c-section. The anticipation of the procedure about to happen was slightly nerve wracking, but I knew, I truly knew, I was in good, prepared hands.

I was given some muscle relaxer drug that kicked in really fast and made me feel so loopy and a lot more relaxed. It definitely wasn’t anything that muted any pain, but it did help my stomach stay soft and easy to work with. I was also given a shot in the back of my arm (not sure what that was?) and then a few nurses came in, the anesthesiologist stood nearby, Craig stood near by head and my doctor positioned himself beside me and began the ECV.

Overall, the whole procedure took less than ten minutes. It went smoothly and thankfully the baby cooperated with everything going on for the most part. My doctor definitely knew what he was doing and I was grateful to see how often he checked the ultrasound to make sure she was doing ok in there with all this chaos. Right towards the end when she was nearly all the way head down, her head was being a little stubborn and getting into place, and then all the sudden it was like a puzzle piece fitting perfectly where it should, I felt her head pop into the exact spot it was meant to be. I don’t know how to explain it except that all the sudden she just fit really well where she was at. The procedure was not comfortable at all. It hurt really bad. I kept my eyes closed the entire time and just tried to focus on breathing. I got so hot and felt so sweaty. I could feel my feet flexing hard (nurses later commented on that, too) and my hands were squeezing my gown as hard as I could. It was tolerable pain, but it was not fun at all. I was terribly sore the next couple of days and am still sore in one specific spot. It was rough, but thankfully, not long.

When it was all finished, I was monitored for the next hour, as well as sisters heartbeat. We both checked out just fine and were able to be discharged!

I was told to take it easy the next couple of days and be mindful of good fetal movement (which thankfully there was so much of). Now that it is all said and done, I am grateful for the experience. I’d say it was totally worth it and I’d recommend it to someone who was faced with that possibility with a breech baby.

10 Best Things About Pregnancy

I’m just about to have my third child and have officially reached the point of just being done. Every night and every morning, I plead/pray that labor will start within the next few hours, and I’m not going to lie, when it doesn’t, I get pretty bummed. I’m ready. I’m so, so ready. I want this baby out of my belly and into my arms.

As my attitude about being pregnant feels like it’s steadily declining here at the end, I decided this morning that I was going to try my best to change the way I’m viewing it for today at least. Today I want to dwell on all the things I love about pregnancy and the miracle that it is. I want to remember how very fortunate I am to be able to carry children. I want to have the blessing this phase of life is, no matter how uncomfortable or long, at the front of my mind.

So with that being said, here are

The 10 Best Things About Pregnancy (according to me):

1: The Movement. It’s both magical and crazy all at the same time. Admittedly, it’s also a little painful at times too. But to feel all the kicks, rolls, stretches, jabs, hiccups and twitches is something truly phenomenal. That is a real life, living, human baby inside of me growing and wiggling! It’s amazing.

2: The Connection. Before baby is born, no one is connected to her/him like you. It’s this special bond only the two of you have until they make their debut into the world. I love that currently, I’m the only one that really knows my daughters movements or the only one that really has (the tiniest) grasp at what her personality will be.

3: The Belly. I know women have varying opinions on pregnancy bodies and big growing bellies, but I personally adore mine. I really do. I feel most confident in my skin when I’m pregnant and I am dang proud of my giant belly! With my boys I never got stretch marks, but this time around I have a couple small ones and I’m strangely excited about them! I love what my body is doing and the crazy changes I’m going through. It’s a blessing that I’ve wished for since I was a little girl, and to be living it now is a dream come true.

4: The Food. I’ll be honest, not being judged on what you’re eating or how much you’re eating because you’re pregnant? Ah-mazing.

5: The Stories. I could talk pregnancy/birth all day long for the rest of my life. I love creating all these memories that I can share with people. One of my favorite things ever is sitting around with fellow moms and sharing stories about our pregnancies, births, etc. It’s bonding and it’s beautiful and it never ceases to blow my mind just how different each experience can be.

6: The Daydreaming. I love imaging the baby. Who will she/he be? What will their name be? What will they look like? What will their personality be? What will their interests be? Will they be born with hair? Who will they most resemble? It’s thrilling.

7: The Anticipation. Ok, anticipating your babies arrival can also be terrifying or feel excruciatingly long, but when looked at with the right attitude, it’s exhilarating. Waiting to add another little soul into your family is so special and exciting!

8: The Shopping. Buying tiny baby clothes and accessories is the. best. It also helps makes things feel real. Once you get a significant little stack of items for them you’ll find yourself obsessing over them and looking through them frequently.

9: The Attention. I’m just being honest here – you get special attention when you’re pregnant and hey, it’s kinda fun! You’re a tiny bit of a celebrity when you’re walking around with a big bump. People treat you a little kinder. It can be awkward for sure, but it’s also kind of sweet.

10: The Space. My current favorite thing is just starting at the space my daughter will take up once she arrives. Her nursery. Her bassinet in my bedroom. Things like that. She is going to figure out quickly how she fits into this family and fill that space so beautifully and I am beyond thrilled to watch it all take place. I know she’ll change the dynamic in our family and rock our world in the best possible way and seeing her spaces helps me remember that and get SO stinkin’ excited!

Delicious and Easy Banana Pudding

You know how so many recipes online can’t be accessed until you read (AKA skim over) 100 paragraphs that kind of have nothing to do with the recipe? That won’t be happening here.

(keep in mind I’ve never claimed to be a photographer. this is not an attractive picture of banana pudding. maybe I could have focused more on keeping it neat when I assembled it, but I was also getting help from a four year old, so.,..)

Here is the recipe to a delicious and easy, quick-to-make Banana Pudding recipe!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • Large package of Instant Vanilla Pudding – 6oz
  • 2 1/2 cups of whole milk
  • 1 14oz can of sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 16 oz container of cool whip
  • 4 sliced bananas
  • Nilla Wafers

DIRECTIONS

  • In a large bowl, mix together pack of Instant Vanilla Pudding with 2 1/2 cups of whole milk
  • Add sweetened condensed milk and mix well
  • Fold in half of the Cool Whip
  • In another large bowl, start assembling the dish, alternating between pudding, bananas and Nilla Wafers
  • Top with the remaining half of Cool Whip and decorate with remaining bananas and wafers
  • Refrigerate for a least one hour before serving

Enjoy! Quick, easy and oh so yummy!

ECV

Today I am going to the hospital to have what will hopefully be a successful External Cephalic Version. In other words, today I am going to the hospital and my doctor is going to attempt to spin my baby. If you didn’t know/didn’t remember, she is in a breech position with her head straight up and her little bum straight down. Ideally, she should be flipped the complete opposite way of where she currently is.

Since we have learned she’s breech, we have just been planning on a c-section. But apparently a c-section wouldn’t be able to be scheduled for me until 39 weeks, and with my last pregnancy (which was frank breech and ended up being kind of a scary delivery I’d rather not re-experience) I didn’t even make it to 39 weeks. My water broke just a little after 38 weeks. So my doctors concern was if we waited to schedule me until 39 weeks, there was a very good chance I’d go into labor before then.

There is a lot more detail to all of this and all the different options that I’m choosing to leave out, but ultimately, Craig and I decided to go in and attempt to have her moved. If this all goes successfully, I’ll have a shot to have a regular vaginal delivery – something I truly believed was just out of the cards for me this time around. So this could really be exciting, but I’m also not trying to get my hopes up either way.

Overall, we are just hoping and praying that our sweet girl will be safe. We pray that her heart rate won’t do anything it shouldn’t and that her umbilical cord will cooperate. If possible, it’d be awesome if she decided to stay in the head down position. Then we’d just be able to wait for me to go into labor and have a vaginal delivery, which is what I’ve always wanted deep down. But this all comes down to her. Just as long as she is safe and healthy, I don’t really care how she comes into the world. But right now, the ECV is what feels best to both Craig and I.

Wish us luck!

May 2020

Good

  • Harrison had his adorable little preschool graduation this month and he felt like a star, which made my mom-heart nearly burst into a thousand pieces. It was the cutest. We drove by his preschool while music played and his teachers cheered for him and gave him a gift bag and a balloon. He was on cloud 9 and you could see pride just beaming from him. It was a really awesome experience.
  • My sister also graduated from High School! Best. Graduation. Ever. Can we just start always having drive-by graduations? It was still totally special and personal, but without the uncomfortable chairs, long speeches and the hardship of trying to keep your kids quiet.
  • I’ve been on a nesting spree and I’m all about it. I’m actually a little sad when I realize that after I have baby and I’m healing from my c-section I won’t be able to do all this upkeep on my house that I’ve been so, so obsessed with lately.
  • I’m due next month. Next month! Thats like…soon. I cannot wait. Everything is ready for her. Now we are just waiting for her!!
  • The boys are kind of figuring out bedtime, finally. I mean, its still a pain in the butt getting them to bed and keeping them in bed, but stuff is slowly catching on, especially with Harrison. I’m excited about it and proud of them for trying so hard! They have no idea how much I appreciate it.
  • I love home church. It looks like our church will be starting up again soon, and honestly there is part of me thats bummed out about it. I love doing church from home and I truly feel like my own testimony has grown, as well as the testimony in my little boys. Its exciting and really humbling and beautiful. I actually don’t think my family will be going back to church for a while with me being at the tail end of pregnancy and then we’ll have a newborn. So I believe home church will continue for us for a little bit, but to know its kind of coming to an end does make me a little sad, oddly.
  • I’ve planted my garden flowers and I kid you not, each and every time I see them, I smile. I love flowers so, so, so much. I’m proud of them. They become like children to me and they just bring me so much joy.

Not-So-Good

  • I’ve started having contractions that hurt. Like bad. Especially at night time. So this could totally be on my ‘good’ list too, because that means we are getting closer and closer to baby time, but I’m a big baby when it comes to pain, so its making the not-so-good list currently.
  • My heartburn had kind of slowed down, but its back with a vengeance. Enough said.
  • I feel like postpartum anxiety is already starting in me. Uh oh. I mean, I’m not surprised though. I’m very grateful that Craig is so supportive of me and in tune with my mental state. He helps me in every way possible and helps me feel validated and not like a psycho woman. I’m trying to be patient and kind with myself. I’m trying to remember that having anxiety doesn’t make me any less of a mother. I’m also clinging to the calm that Craig brings me when it comes to all this. I’m thankful for my family that respects me, especially around baby time – its so appreciated!

Home

  • Mostly, ‘Home’ has been used this month with just lots and lots of cleaning, sanitizing and organizing. A happier mom lives in this house when its orderly and clean. That also helps the spirit live here more abundantly, so its a win-win.
  • We have also been doing pretty well with our daily Come Follow Me study together as a family. I feel like I say it all the time, but I have loved seeing the Book of Mormon stories come to life in my boys minds. I love the questions they ask and the lessons they take away from what we talk about. I love hearing them talk about how the stories we’ve learned can apply to our daily lives. Its special and spiritual and has created such a wonderful feeling in our home.