Monday, January 31, 2011

Why I love...

Co-sleeping!
I went into pregnancy with this beautiful sleeping arrangement in my mind. You know. The ideal baby sleeps through the night {7pm - 7am} at 2 weeks old. I laugh at myself as I knew no way was this realistic, especially with breastfeeding. I knew I wanted baby close to us, in our room, but I was not a fan at the thought of baby sleeping in the bed with us.
I introduce you to the best of both worlds - The Arms Reach Co sleeper, mini. :-)
I cannot recommend this item more if I tried! I absolutely love it! I love that all I have to do is roll over and I can touch her, pick her up and bring her into bed next to me, lay her down in it after falling back asleep, and yet still have room to get in/out of bed with minimal grunts. :-) Yes, she has spent numerous nights in bed with us sleeping directly under me it seems. I love these moments too...
Charles loves having her nearby as well. He often times wakes at night to barely sit up to look over me to check on Little Miss himself. {Gosh I love that man!} Neither of us see her moving into her own room and crib at night until around 6 months old. We are thoroughly enjoying these sleeping arrangements and see us doing it with all future children.
The pad is a bit hard and uncomfortable for baby so I've put a couple blankets down that she sleeps on top of to soften it a bit for her. It has worked as she sleeps wonderfully in it now, most of the time anyways. :-) It works for us. I will be sad when the day comes and she leaves my side, literally, to sleep in her own crib at night.
By the way- the photo is the exact Arms Reach Co-sleeper Mini that we own and love! Co-sleeping is different from bed sharing where the baby sleeps in the bed with you.

Daddy's Girl!

Little Miss is such a daddy's girl!

I savor the moments now that only I can give her {nursing} as I know the day is coming when she is going to wean and will run to daddy...

Nothing warms my heart more though than seeing my husband cuddle his sweet baby girl...

Their relationship is special. I hope it continues forever!



He was home for ten minutes. Gave kisses. Talked to her. And then she was out for a nice needed nap. :-)

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sippy Cups!

While at Babies R Us spending my R Us Bucks, we decided to get several varieties of Sippy Cups. I have worked with way too many kids to be naive in thinking that the first one I try her on, she'll love and forever use! I know kids are picky and each have their own likes/dislikes so we stocked up on a variety! I seriously think we got like six different types of sippy cups. :-)

I am most excited to try her on this Tommee Tippee one! It's adorable! And yes, we will give the first go on her 4 month birthday just for laughs. She has only had a bottle a whopping like three times so far and I'm okay with that. If we can skip bottles all together, that would be a-okay in my book!

Sippy cups from 4 month to 12-18 months. Sometime between 12-18 months start on open lid cups and hopefully have spills down to once a day by 2 years old. I say that's the way to go!

I am super excited to see how she does with this sippy cup. It isn't shaped like a pacifier or the Playtex Drop Ins bottles or the Medela Bottles that she has taken to without a problem...

So for further laughs, kicks, grins, and giggles- what sippy cups did/do your children favor??? I will have to look into my stash and perhaps take a photo of all the varieties. :-)

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Why I love...

Breastfeeding!
I always knew that I would breastfeed, or at least give it one heck of an attempt. I knew all the benefits it has for baby. The immunity, the natural antibiotics, the amazing only God derived function of the milk changing to suite baby's needs specifically pending age, etc. I knew of the health benefits to mom too. The relaxant. The happy hormones. The weight loss. The breast cancer chance reduction. The bonding.
It's a beautiful thing!
What I didn't know and only ever hoped for, was how amazingly convenient breastfeeding is {directly from the source anyways}. I don't have to pack bottles. No dispensing formula before outings. No needing to plan my day so I can try to predict feeding times and bring appropriate bottles/formula. No need in using both arms, one to hold baby and one to hold bottle to feed baby, when out and about. No need in worrying where to get the water from to milk formula to feed baby.
I love that when out and about if she gets hungry, I take a few minutes to adjust things accordingly and then we're back off to whatever we were doing while she's happy nursing away. I love that it is our time. When family is here, I have a reason to get my baby back for some much needed snuggles. I love that she knows I am her food source and comfort. I love that she almost instantly calms when nursing regardless of what has happened previously to upset her so.
I especially love the middle of the night feedings where all I have to do is turn over to get her out of the co sleeper attached to our bed, lay her next to me, and I drift off to sleep while she fills her tummy. Me, sleep deprived? Nope. {Most of the time anyways} Thanks to breastfeeding!
I am so thankful that I have had such an amazing support network surrounding me and encouraging me through the difficult times {those growth spurts are killer!} when I questioned if I had enough milk to satisfy her... I am so thankful that my husband is a supporter of breastfeeding as well since he is missing out on the feeding part 99.999% of the time.
I am looking forward to continuing to breastfeed for the next couple of years! {Before all you go gasping in horror at at 2 year old still nursing, the World Health Organization recommends it as it is best!} Or at least until she self weans... I hope to at least reach the 1 year mark though. :-)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Teething...

I do believe the dreaded teething word has officially struck our household... Little Miss has no longer taken to sucking on my finger, no, she wants to bite. Thankfully this has not happened during any nursing sessions yet. :-) She's whiney, chewing on her own fingers, drooling a lot. The beginning signs of teething...

I have read quite a bit, even in the midst of Infertility you-know-what, I would occupy my time by dreaming of our one day baby and read up on any and everything I possibly could. Baltic Amber Teething necklaces included.

This is the Milk and Honey Baltic Amber teething necklace I am anxiously awaiting to arrive {from Hazelaid.com} for Little Miss. I have read such fantastic success stories by those that used such teething necklaces that I too hope to be sharing a success story sometime soon!

Charles thinks it's a bunch of hooey. I disagree. We'll see!

Amber is not a “stone” but a natural resin. So as it warms with the body’s natural temperature, amber releases its healing oils (these oils contain succinic acid) which are readily absorbed into the skin and then into the bloodstream. Baltic Amber has some of the highest concentrations of succinic acid found in nature, and this is what makes it so special. Succinic acid is a natural component of plant and animal tissues, and it's presence in the human body is beneficial in many ways.

Commonly known as "teething jewelry" in Europe, Baltic amber has been a natural remedy for pain relief for hundreds of years. Baltic amber is a natural analgesic that will help relieve headaches,reduce inflammation of the throat, ear and stomach and fight irritations, infections and respiratory diseases as it dramatically improves the body’s immunity.

Makes sense to me... {No worries, the Hyland's Teething tablets are on my to get list as well!}

I also purchased one for myself. :-) I hope to share a success story from my end too over the coming weeks!

Anyone used one themselves or for their little ones? Know of someone that has used one?

Monday, January 24, 2011

3 Months!

I cannot believe 3 months have passed already... My baby girl is 3 months old!

Everyday she is doing something new to amaze us. I feel so blessed to wake up each morning to her smiles and go to bed each night just staring at her. My heart overflows with love...

How could it not looking at this sweet face though!? Oh Little Miss, you have stolen our hearts, again and again and again and...


Kristine from Kristine Lynn Photography came to our house on Saturday to do Little Miss' 3 month photos. Kristine is an amazing photographer and such a delight to have capturing such precious moments for us! I am so looking forward to the next several milestone photo sessions with her! This is just one photo... the teaser. I cannot wait to see and share other photos from this session!

On Sunday, Charles and I did the unfancy 3 month photos with my boring camera. :-) Little Miss is still adorable if you ask me!

She is thriving beyond belief. She's "talking" up a storm. Smiles all the time. Loves to go shopping with mommy. Hates naps. Loves bedtime. Enjoys her weekly bath. Gets a kick out of being naked, er, everything but diaper as pee always follows when that thing comes off. Has mastered rolling from tummy to back since she was like a week old. Is oh so close to rolling back to tummy, that darn arm gets in the way. Grabbing and putting toys into mouth is a relatively new trick. She has daily "conversations" with Charles when he gets home from work. It's their special time and it melts my heart! She loves nursing and instantly fixes whatever may be wrong once she gets into the position. As of today, she gives kisses. Big, wet, juicy kisses. She opens her mouth wide and everything!

Blessed doesn't even begin to truly tell how I feel. Everyday I thank God that He has sent Madelyn to us, even if it took all the heartache and frustration and losses. She is absolutely perfect. I so want to keep her little and cuddly like this forever yet am beaming with pride as she demonstrates a new talent on a hourly basis it seems!

I must go searching for Baltic Amber Teething necklaces now... Why yes, I do believe we are quickly approaching that stage. Fun.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Disposables STINK!

...In more than one way! :-)

Little Miss has spent the majority of her time in cloth {I need a couple more covers to get me through as I always seem to need one disposable diaper on wash day} since 8 weeks. I love the thought of her being in cloth. I'm sure it feels better on her bottom. The fluffy butt, err, shelf back, is adorable! A few mornings back I realized just how much I loved cloth!

It was wash day and sure enough, I needed one single disposable diaper for her as the covers were still drying. She ended up going to bed a bit earlier {I don't change her diaper during the night unless it's poopy since it wakes her up so much that she thinks it's time to get up for the day and then can we say cranky pants?} than usual so she slept in the disposable all night. The next morning I don't awaken to my adorable baby pawing me to eat but instead this horrendous smell! It was the darn disposable diaper!

I'm pretty sure she urinates about the same amount nightly these days so the cloth should stink that much too, right? WRONG! It just was another reason to affirm my love for cloth these days...

So if you're looking to give cloth a try, think of the urine smells you won't be missing! :-)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Laughs, Kicks, Grins, and Giggles

Let's talk sleep! :-) Little Miss' sleep that is...

Blah blah blah, I've been a nanny for several years, random babysitter since I was 11, worked in day cares, church nurseries, helped my mom when she babysat, etc... All the tricks to put babies to sleep, I did. I was {mostly} successful. My own? Ha!

It all started on Thanksgiving day 2010... That was the first day she has flat refused to sleep! She sleeps a whopping 20 to a rare 30 minutes for her naps which only happen a handful of times during the day. Thankfully though, she is a happy non napper and a fantastic night sleeper so I really can't complain. I've learned though that when she first shuts her eyes to jump in and out of the shower really quick if I have any hopes of showering at all when Charles is at work.

So besides swaddling {she HATES being confined and has since like day 3 of life}, tummy/back/side sleeping {she's a side sleeper}, sleeping in a swing/bouncer {hates the swing and bouncer she likes only when well, bouncing}, and white noise things that turn off after X amount of time- what are your tricks???

This 20 minutes is regardless if she puts herself to sleep {I don't let her CIO, she's too young in my book so it's the moments she just lays there and drifts to sleep}, rocking, bouncing, nursing, baby wearing, dark room, bright room, car rides, shopping, loud, quiet, etc.

Example- She fell asleep so I put her in the co sleeper. She slept through the dogs barking, me showering, and my cell phone ringing right next to her. Yet at that 20 minute mark she was wide eyed and ready to roll. Crazy, huh?

The only three times she has had a good long nap since Thanksgiving Day is one day when she was sick she slept for 3 hours on the couch, I took a nap with her in our bed and she slept for 45 minutes, and today on Charles she slept for just over an hour.

She wakes for the day between 6 and 8 am happy and goes to bed between 7 and 8 pm. She sleeps a good 7 hours before waking for her first feeding and then sleeps another few hours before waking for a feed and the day. This I do NOT want to change, obviously.

Again, it's not like she acts tired all day by being fussy or crying. She's happy and talking and smiling and alert and playing all day when not in her little cat naps.

So I'm asking, just to humor me, for your sure thing ways to get baby to sleep!