You guys!! We’ve been in newborn heaven, this glorious, precious little bubble for the last week and a half and life feels so magical. How we ever lived without this little boy is a mystery to me. He is such a mild, sweet and easy little guy. We are feeling overwhelmed with the blessing that he is to us. He’s here! Finally!! My perfect little man.
Eventually I’ll tell you about his birth and gush about him some more, but for now I just wanted to tell you that he’s here and perfect and smoosh as can be and we are both doing really well and feeling great! Life is good.
I can’t believe it. You are almost here. Only a few weeks stand between now and the day I finally get to hold you. Touch you. Love on you. Kiss you. Feed you. Swaddle you. Stare at you. I’ve been looking forward to it for so, so long – and now its almost here.
You’ve saved me, buddy. I know the power a rainbow baby holds and the healing they can do for a mama’s heart. Already you’ve eased so much in me and I can only imagine the peace you’ll bring when you are physically in my arms. Oh, I can’t wait.
I can’t wait for you to meet your big brothers and big sister. They have been so eager to meet you. They’ve daydreamed about you for so long. They’re so ready. They can’t wait to be the very best helpers with you. They can’t wait to hold you and smother you (hopefully semi-gently, at least) with all of their big, big love.
Keep on growing sweet little boy. Keep on wiggling. Hey, if you feel like it go ahead and go head down unless being breach is what truly brings you joy 😉 I hope you’re just as excited to meet us as we are to meet you!!
We are so excited and honestly, so surprised! Most people close to us guessed this baby was a girl, and our whole family, except Emmett, had all guessed girl, too! But this little boy was proud to show off exactly what he was haha. Honestly, I don’t know why we ever decided to guess against what Emmett was guessing. He called that I was pregnant before even I knew. There have been several instances where Emmett and this babies connection have been very evident, so why on earth did I not guess boy, too? Of course he was right!!
Having another sweet little boy in our family is going to be so much fun!! We feel so grateful and this just feels so comfortable and lovely. What an exciting time!!
It isn’t a club I wanted to join. Its one I prayed so hard that I’d be lucky enough to somehow avoid all my life. But, despite all of my best wishes, its one I’m a part of now. I’ve actually been a part of this ‘club’ for a couple years now. I miscarried recently this year, but I also had a miscarriage in 2019.
I stayed silent about my first one. I was embarrassed and ashamed. I didn’t want the pity or the sympathy. I didn’t want people to bring it up with me because I wasn’t sure how I was ‘supposed‘ to handle it. I didn’t know if I’d burst into tears, get angry, or feel peace. I just didn’t even want to try and see what would happen. So I said nothing. I locked it up. For a while it was ok, but I realized I felt so isolated and alone in my miscarriage, and it was all because I chose to keep it a secret. Somehow it made it all worse.
So this time I’m choosing to just say it. I had a miscarriage. Again. And it sucked really bad. It still does. But I don’t want to feel alone this time. I also don’t want the pity, but I’d rather risk it than feel so alone, again.
I know I’m not alone. Miscarriages happen all the time. They’re unfortunately so common. They’re a tragic loss. The second you find out you’re pregnant, your babies whole life flashes before your eyes. You visualize everything about them. You start daydreaming about who they’ll be. You love them like your other children. So then, when you find out you don’t get to keep that baby here on earth…its gut wrenching. Its terrible. Its awful. Its lonely.
My first miscarriage really rocked me in a lot of spiritual ways. It took a long time to get back to where I am now. This one, I’ve found, has been a lot more of a mental trial. Its just hard. Then there’s the fact that for some reason I still look barely pregnant… Its like salt in the wound.
I’m trying to have a positive attitude. But I’m also mourning the loss of my child and the person they could have been here on earth. I’m missing them. I’m sad that I had to lose them and had no control over the situation. I’m disappointed. I’m confused. I’m sad.
But the one thing I keep reminding myself of is the rainbows that follow storms.
Flora is my first rainbow baby. She saved my soul and filled me with joy. I one hundred percent believe that I will get my second rainbow. I know it will be ok. I know I will be ok. But I also know healing takes time, and some things we’ll just never fully understand in this life.
I fully believe that Heavenly Father has a plan for me and my family. I believe that the babies I’ve lost are under His watchful care and I believe He allows them to know just how much their earthly mother loved them. I believe I will see them on the other side. I believe they’re ok. I believe they’re with our family.
I’m not sure how to wrap this post up. I just had to be sure I didn’t lock myself up this time around and make myself feel even more lonely than this already can feel. I’m in the club. Reluctantly, but a two-time member, now. If you’re in the same situation, I’m here to talk. I don’t know if I have any advice, and I certainly don’t have words to fix it for you, but I have ears to listen and a heart to feel for you. I’m here for you. And I’m sorry if you know the same feelings that I do, but lets feel it together.
Since having my first child five and a half years ago, I’ve been wondering just how I would store my kids important papers/documents/keepsakes. Everyone has their own method that they’re passionate about, and I listened to so many ideas, but ultimately I (finally) landed on this, my own, method. I’ve seen this same idea all over the internet, so I’m not at all claiming it as my own. I’m just super excited about it so I’m sharing it with you in case you’re on the hunt for a good storage idea too! And believe me, if I can do it, so can you. It was super simple and very satisfying.
I ordered file folder boxes and files. The boxes I ordered came in a pack of 4, so I even have one ready for my next baby! Then I ordered a pack of files for each box – the packs I ordered came with 25 (I think) and there are several extra folders in each box, should we decide we need them for something in the kids future. I put the folders in the box and labeled them (in this order):
Then, with my cricut machine, I cut out their first initials in vinyl and applied them to the front and voila! Told you it was easy!
I don’t plan on keeping every single paper from school or piece of art they create (like adorable scribbles on scraps of paper, you know?) But I’m going to mindfully keep the papers that my kids worked extra hard on or are extra proud of. The papers that have a funny story behind them or are particularly adorable. The ones I think they’d be happy to see someday when they’re adults showing their own children their memories.
I have put the bracelets we wore in the hospitals for their births in the Baby folder, along with ultrasound pictures, etc. In the boys Toddler folders, I put the bag of clippings from their first haircuts. Things like that. I also knew I had to have a folder dedicated to their stats from doctors appointments. I’m obsessed with my kids stats so I wanted them readily available.
K guys. If you pay any attention to me, you probably know that I don’t sleep at night very well. Why? Well, besides crippling anxiety, it’s because little Flora struggles so hard at night time. It was more common than not to get like maaaaybe two hours of sleep – and not consecutively. I rode the struggle bus – heck, I think I drove the struggle bus – daily, and I knew I needed to figure this out. When I don’t sleep, the first thing really affected is my mental health and…obviously I don’t want that. It also made Flora struggle to be the happy girl she naturally is and it was negatively affecting her naps during the day! It’s safe to say, things needed to change.
So I started simple and hey, somehow it’s working finally! I’ve tried this many times, but now it’s clicking for us both and I’m not lying when I say I have cried about this.
I love sleep.
How We’ve Done It
•At dinner time, I make sure she has a nice, full belly
•She takes a nice, warm bath and thoroughly enjoys every second of it (it’s adorable how much she loves baths)
•We lotion her up and put her in cozy jammies and her sleep sack
•We go in her brothers room to read a book, do scriptures and prayer, then we kiss her brother goodnight
•I nurse her for a few minutes then put her in her crib. Sometimes she is asleep, sometimes she is drowsy. I’m not a stickler on that.
•I turn the video monitor on and leave the room and close the doors
Typically she’ll cry for several minutes, but is then able to soothe herself back to sleep (YAY!) And each night she falls asleep quicker. I’m so proud of her. Seriously.
During the night she will occasionally whimper, but is able to fall back asleep on her own. If she is really sad, I go comfort her for a minute by patting her back and speaking softly to her. She also typically wakes up around 2:30/3 and we nurse – in all honesty, this ones for me. My boobs can’t handle going all night without nursing yet.
It’s amazing. It’s so refreshing and it feels strange and so satisfying to be able to sleep so well at night again. It’s been a long time, after all.
I’m trying to figure out how to say this without sounding insensitive. It’s been on my mind for the past week and I just want to share my thoughts on the topic.
The last few days I have seen several posts about how parents shouldn’t complain about their children. Mainly, the reasons seem to be because it scares future/hopeful mothers.
Here’s the thing. I totally get that! I remember when we were trying for Harrison, it never sat right with me when people would complain about their kids. I mean – you have a kid! That’s something people dream about and pray so hard for. So complaining about these little miracles just seemed downright awful. I still fully understand why people would say this, too. If you know me, you know I 100% believe people should have their own opinions and have every right to believe what they want to. Everyone has their own thoughts and that is GREAT! and I mean that!
However, now I’m a mother. I’ve had this title for a little over 5 hours now. It’s a beautiful thing. It’s my grandest blessing and greatest honor. I love my three children with my whole heart and life with them is even better than the best adventure I could have ever imagined. But motherhood can also feel really isolating and lonely sometimes. Sometimes you feel that way because of what your kids are doing. And..hey, I know it’s not great, but sometimes complaining a little bit feels good. I know that personally, when I whine a little and other moms can relate and share their advice or even their solidarity, it helps me feel less isolated. It helps me feel like I’m not doing motherhood all wrong. It helps ease the mom guilt. I promise I’m not doing it to scare anyone about motherhood. I’m not doing it to make anyone feel like I’m ungrateful for my children. Nothing could be farther from the truth. It just helps me feel less crazy. It reminds me it’s ok if every second isn’t a piece of cake. It reminds me that motherhood isn’t always a walk in the park, and THATS OK. I’m just grateful that there are other moms out there who validate these feelings. I hope I can validate them in other moms, as well. Motherhood is a journey and we are in this together!
As for you wonderful and valiant hopeful mamas and mamas-to-be, I truly hope that when I periodically complain about my kids sleep habits, picky eating or tricky behavior, you don’t see it as me trying to scare anyone or be inconsiderate to people. I’m doing it because just like you are on your journey, I am on mine and this is how I handle it. Guys. I promise you that I’m not trying to scare you. Motherhood is lovely and I’d never try to convince anyone otherwise.
Ok now I feel like I’m rambling. Do you get what I’m saying? I just basically want to say – I get both sides!! But I don’t feel like people should feel like they should be silent about things that help them mentally (like talking about all aspects of motherhood) out of fear of offending. Does this make sense?
Please just know I’m not trying to ruffle any feathers. I adore all of you. Everyone. I will validate all your feelings. Whatever side of this matter you’re on, I absolutely get it.
Alright I need to stop now because I feel like I’m talking myself in a hole. Haha! All of you keep being incredible. I love you all dearly.
On June 11th, our little Flora was born at 8:30am after a quick and kind of crazy delivery. She is absolute perfection and has changed our family for the better. Life with her in it is pure magic. Yesterday, she turned two months old (how??) and I have finally finished up her quick birth story for you guys. I think about her delivery a lot. It was not what I planned, but it was really incredible.
Now how about a birth story?
On the evening of June 10th I’d started feeling contractions that were different than the Braxton hicks contractions I’d felt the past few weeks. These ones weren’t super painful or anything, but I could tell they were slowly and surely getting more powerful. Harrison had a soccer game and then we went to my parents house for a while and the whole time I could just tell some things were changing, but I decided not to get my hopes up yet at this point and just tried to continue to be patient.
That evening around 9:30pm I felt like there was another shift in my body. More pain. A little more intensity. But nothing serious, yet. I got some stuff done around the house after putting the boys to bed, then decided to go to bed myself around 10:30 to see if I could sleep off the pain. I could until about 1:30am. I woke up somewhere around 1:30 hurting significantly more. I decided to finally download a contraction timing app and laid there in bed, timing my contractions for a while. They were coming anywhere from every 10-30 minutes, their intensity varying all the while. I texted my sisters just to let them know I may be needing them to come over in the middle of the night, then went back to waiting and timing and breathing.
Finally around 4 I had a contraction that made me shoot up. I couldn’t do it laying down anymore. It was a real, painful and powerful contraction. I woke Craig up in the process and I just remember him rubbing my back. He told me a little while later than when he saw me sit up, he knew this was the real deal. As I stood up, my water also broke (but in the moment I wasn’t sure if it was my water or if I’d wet my pants), but when I went to the restroom and noticed blood – a true labor sign for me – I quickly convinced myself that this was it.
Craig and I got ready, I told my sisters to come over and we arrived to the hospital right at 6 in the morning. I was hooked up to the monitors and checked (I was at a 4, with contractions coming every 1-2 minutes apart) and was told I’d be monitored for an hour to see if I progressed, and if I had enough, I’d be admitted.
I don’t think it was coincidence that my nurse (who we loved) randomly decided to check me at 30 minutes. Turns out, I was progressing fast, so with that, she admitted me a half an hour early! She called for my epidural, I got my IV and things started getting real. I was in a lot of pain by this point and I was also as hot as I have ever felt in my entire life.
The next little while was just waiting for things to continue to move. I kept dilating and kept waiting for my epidural. My doctor came in to say hi and check me and asked where my epidural was and the nurses explained they’d called for it couple of times and it still hadn’t shown up. He told them to call for it again. Not too long afterwards he came back in to check again and we knew that it would be time to push soon. Its a good thing I was hurting so bad and just totally in my own head, otherwise I probably would have gone into panic mode. When I had Harrison, my epidural was only sort of working, and I just remember that hurting – so I didn’t want to have to have a painful delivery again. But I was too busy focusing on surviving each contraction and trying not to burst into flames (seriously, I was SO hot) to think too much of my anesthesiologist not coming very fast – although I sure wished he would have hurried.
Around 8:20 the anesthesiologist finally came in and administered my long-awaited epidural. This one hurt pretty bad. I’m not sure if its just because everything hurt so bad at that point or what, but I just remember so much pain. Also, Craig couldn’t fan me anymore while I got my epidural, so I felt so hot I wanted to scream at people. Immediately after laying back down after getting that taken care of, I was checked.
It was time to push. Now. She was right there. But guess what? I was told my epidural would take at least 15 minutes to start working. I asked my nurse and Craig if there was anything we could do to make it work faster (in hind site, I see thats a silly question, but I was desperate) and she very kindly told me that I could wait for the epidural to start working, but that things were moving and baby sister was coming out.
So I started to push. I can honestly say that delivering a baby with no epidural to help me was the most pain I’ve ever felt and a lot more awful than I’d ever imagined, but at the same time, doing it without an epidural made me feel powerful and strong – something I don’t feel about myself too often. It was really neat to literally feel her every move as she came out of my body. Delivering her head and shoulders were…there are no words. Just ouch, ouch, ouch. But thankfully I only had to push a few times – about five minutes – and she was born.
Everyone noticed that she was a “good sized baby,” or a, “big baby,” immediately (I’ve got that with all my kids now). Craig cut the cord and my perfect little girl, my first daughter, was placed on my chest. There is nothing more magical than those moments.
A while later she was weighed, measured, cleaned and cared for. She weighed 8 pounds, 1 ounce and was 21 and 3/4ths inches, and 100% perfection.
We only stayed in the hospital one night due to Covid, and were able to go home the next day a few hours after noon. Only a couple of hours before we left, we finally named her Flora. The boys were beyond thrilled to meet their little sister. They greeted her so enthusiastically and sweetly, it melted me.
We are so, so happy to have our baby here safe, healthy and happy!
*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.
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.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.
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?
So full disclosure, this is not going to be a long, elaborate list of things I bring to the hospital. I’ve found I’m actually quite minimalistic when it comes to packing for the hospital. With Harrison, I brought way too much to the hospital and touched less than half of it. For me, the hospital is a time to be laid-back and enjoy those first moments with this new, tiny baby. I didn’t need all the different things I was so sure I would. I followed lots of blogs and lots of friends advice, but found that overall, I didn’t need much at all, and neither did my baby. Plus, the hospital has everything you need. Seriously, they know what they’re doing and they’ve got you covered. However, if bringing nearly your entire home is something that works great for you and helps your hospital stay be more pleasant – then more power to you! You do you! This is just my personal opinion.
WHAT I’M PACKING IN MY HOSPITAL BAG THE THIRD TIME AROUND
Small, simple toiletry bag with whatever the essentials are for you. For me, my toiletry bag will have contacts, glasses, chapstick, my simplest skincare for morning and night, lotion, dry shampoo, hair brush, a cute hair tie, deodorant, toothbrush and paste, mascara, a brow pencil, concealer and makeup remover.
My tip for the toiletry bag: Likely, you won’t want to pack all of this stuff ahead of time because you’ll still be using it daily. So I stick a piece of paper in the top of my bag with a list of all the things I’ll need to grab last minute before we drive to the hospital. My list this time around for my last minute items include: toothbrush and paste, hair brush, deodorant, glasses, moisturizer, my simple make up items, phone and charger.
Robe. This isn’t necessary at all. The hospital gown is totally great, functional and there’s no pressure to ever take it off if you don’t want to. I just like having the option of a robe. I only wore my gown when I had Harrison and with Emmett I switched between a robe and the gown. This time around I have a robe that matches a swaddle and bow for Baby Sister. I can’t wait.
Phone/charger. Does this need explanation?
Socks. I have a lucky pair of socks that I only wear when I have a baby. But even if I didn’t have a lucky pair, I’d bring some just in case – you’d hate cold feet to inconvenience you during such a special time.
Clothes to wear home. This can be the same thing you wore in, too, keep in mind. With Harrison, I wore exactly what I wore to the hospital home from the hospital. With Emmett though, my water had broken, so the clothing I wore to the hospital was…not wearable (AKA gross), so I was happy I had a going home outfit for myself in my bag. For me, this outfit is something loose fitting and very comfortable. Don’t worry about being cute. Just worry about being as comfortable as possible.
Nursing bra. I forgot one when I had Harrison! I didn’t ever wear a bra during my whole hospital stay, but I wished I had one for the drive home (that wasn’t my regular bra that I wore in).
Shoes. Just wear something simple and easy to put on. Bonus points if you don’t have to lean over to put them on.
Underwear. But this is just a maybe. I’ve never taken my own underwear to the hospital. They provide you plenty of mesh underwear to wear that can be thrown away. You bleed a lot after birth, so its nice to just throw these disposable ones away instead of getting your own messy. However, this time I am bringing one pair of underwear for the drive home. I may not even wear them, I’m just testing them out. Mostly I got sucked into getting them because they’re supposed to be great for after c-sections, so I got them on a whim and decided to pack a pair.
Diaper Bag. My goal is to fit everything both baby and I will need in my new Freshly Picked diaper bag. Its just easier to have everything in once space for me. It feels less messy, cluttered and chaotic, and I don’t want to be worrying about clutter after I’ve had my baby or worrying about what is in what bag.
Take home outfit. Bring something sweet and comfy for your new one to wear home. For my boys, they wore the same little navy blue footed, zip-up pair of pajamas. I decided for Baby Sister, she’d wear the exact same thing, except I found her a white one with little red and white hearts all over it. She also has a matching bow.
Mittens. Babies scratch the heck out of their little faces the second they’re born. You’ll want the mittens, believe me.
Binky. Everyone has their own opinion about when its appropriate to attempt to start your baby on a binky. I, personally, am fine with starting them on it in the hospital.
Swaddle. I’m actually bringing a couple swaddles this time for the pictures we’ll take in the hospital, but just one is totally fine.
Car Seat. Don’t forget to bring the carseat!! We install ours into our car a few weeks before the due date just so we don’t even have to worry about it when the time comes.
Thats it! I told you I was low maintenance when it came to this. In all honesty though, the hospital knows what its doing and provides all the essentials for you. They take care of you. Also, if you want to bring more things like your own pillow/blanket, a new outfit for you and baby each day, etc, then totally go for it! Like I said earlier, you do you.