Saturday, February 23, 2013

Couldn't live without.

Okay, so if we lived in a cave way back when I'm sure we could have made due without the following things, but we don't live in a cave. In fact, we really like modern conveniences. Therefore, these are the things that have made the first few months of life with our little man easier, lovelier, and more functional...

Monitor --Angelcare
We had some complications with our monitor but eventually we realized the false alarms were due to our own operator errors. I now realize, looking back, how silly it was that I lost sleep over false alarms and middle-of-the night research sessions spent wondering if Sanders had sleep apnea. All the while the problem was that I had the monitor too close to the crib. (It requires a specific distance in order to work correctly.) As it turns out, sleep is far more beautiful a thing than perfectly centered monitor placement. ;P
Diapers --Pampers Swaddlers They're the best.
Nursing Bra --Basics by Bravado These babies are handy.
Nursing Pads --Lansinoh These are life savers, especially for over-producing "mama cows" such as myself.
Nursing Cream --Lansinoh Lanolin I keep a tube on my nightstand, a tube in the diaper bag, and tube in my pump bag, and I use them all. I use it every day and it keeps me going.
Breast Pump --Medela Due to breastfeeding complications there was a month (or more) where Sanders continued getting my "liquid gold" :) thanks to this pump. I continue to use it to stockpile for the future and to have on hand for times when breastfeeding is inconvenient. I'm so thankful for my pump!
Nursing Pillow --My Brest Friend Sanders loves this pillow. We use it for every feeding. I love the back support and the fact that he's ultra comfortable so he eats really well. 
Bottles --Dr. Browns 
Swaddles --SwaddleMe, Aden & Anais We found SwaddleMe's really convenient when Sanders was brand new. He quickly outgrew the ones we had and before we bought the next size we noticed him starting to sooth himself with his hands and fingers, which is why we switched to putting him in sleepers and wrapping him more loosely in Aden and Anais swaddles. (Now, at 3+ months he wears sleep sacks to bed.)
Pacifier --Sanders' chosen plug was made by Born Free.
Bouncer Seat & Infant-to-Toddler Rocker --Fisher Price Sanders refused at first to sleep on a flat surface so he spent his nights (and naps) in his bouncer. He quickly weighed it down though, which is when we discovered his cousin Millie's rocker. (Like the bouncer, it vibrates too!) Thanks [sis-in-law]Amy for letting us borrow Mill's rocker. We love it and use it every day.
Take Along Swing --Fisher Price Two swings were donated to our adoption sale last year. At the time we were planning on two babies, so I kept both swings. I tried on and off to use the full sized swing but it always seemed too upright for Sanders. One day I had an itch to get outside and do the first yard work of the year. I remembered the other little swing which we had folded up and tucked away in the garage. It's tiny, collapsible, comfortable for Sanders, and it has a handle, so it's capable of going everywhere I go, even outside. It's my new favorite "tool." I no longer see why big swings are necessary when you could have this tiny, super functional, convenient swing. It costs less and it literally takes up about 1/5th the amount of room as the other swing. 
Burp Cloths
Freezer Meals :)
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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Pregnancy: Obsessions & Aversions

I came across this list kept throughout my pregnancy. Reading it brought back vivid memories of days filled with fire-roasted hot dog cravings as well as landing myself back in bed (or on the bathroom floor) following every attempt to cook/bake with raw eggs. God was good to me, however, considering that although I spent plenty of time in the bathroom sure I was about to lose the contents of my stomach, I never actually did. I lost 8 lbs between my first and second OB appointments due to a dietary rotation consisting of Saltine's and Graham Crackers. Unfortunately, once over the initial queasy stage, I all too quickly made up for lost time. :)

First Trimester:
Hot Dogs

All the way throughout:
Boneless Hot Wings
Chipotle Chicken Burrito Bowls (with extra black beans and extra spicy salsa)
Dairy, any and all but especially cottage cheese. (Oh, and I no longer have time for nonfat milk. I've happily upgraded to 2%.)

First Trimester:
Raw Banana Bread

All the way throughout:
Red Onions

Melted Marshmallows (in coffee and hot chocolate)
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Monday, February 11, 2013

A Little Laid Back. (Just Like Daddy) 9 weeks.

Sanders loves his bathes. 
Following is the documentation of an especially relaxing one that ended with a little snooze. :)

After being washed, he stared, blew bubbles, and conversed with one of his ducks.

Then he fell asleep. :)

He proceeded to sleep, despite being picked up out of his tub.

And suck his two fingers, just like his daddy did when he was a babe.

(Photo of Brian at 3 months old.) 

Genetics can be even better than a hot bath
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Thursday, February 7, 2013

Double Dating with Babies.

I love holding these two. 
Nothing about Skarlett reminds me of August Babe but holding two babies I love at once does bring me back to what I thought our life would look like right now. It's a bit bitter, but mostly sweet. I hope and pray that August Babe is happy, healthy, and most of all, loved.

[Bro-in-law]Brian really, really likes Red Lobster. My Brian is a fan too. I don't fancy fish, in fact I dislike all seafood, but if it means time spent with Brian and Tess and Skarlett I don't care where we go. (As long as I don't have to eat fish. :)
We kicked off the evening of our sleepover with dinner.

 Who puts a baby in a windowsill?! :)

It was such a fun night.

The next morning, following our sleepover, we took our babies for a walk and ended up at Match. We drank espresso and visited, but why talk about that when you could look at this?
 Buttery goodness. He makes me melt.

 She might kick her auntie someday for having posted this, but a silly expression such as this is too good not to share. :) I love you, sweet girl.

 Sisters and our babies...and our coffee!

 Before the little trio took off for home The Starlett and The Colonel partook in some baby bonding.

Sleepover fun was had by all, even the bigger kids, who stayed at their Papa and Nana's house. Thanks Papa and Nana for hosting the bigger of our littles and thereby enabling us to have a special time with our littlest loves. :)

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Making Me Smile.

There have been so many things since Sanders' arrival, most little and some big, that have brought smiles to my face and happiness to my heart. I know I'll never forget the preciousness of the past 11 weeks but the details will fade with time, so here's a little list.

 Both my dad and my father-in-law surprised me with bouquets of cheerful flowers.

We were shown so much love by family, friends, and women from church, preparing and delivering meals to our home. I always knew it was a nice gesture to bring a meal to a family with a new baby but I didn't understand until having my own what an incredible relief it is to not have to worry about dinner.

My friend Laura from church brought us a meal when Sanders was just weeks old. This little Ziploc bag more than made me smile, it made me laugh out loud.

.Brian's Time Off.
In anticipation of Sanders's arrival, Brian saved as much vacation as possible and was able to take 3 weeks off. It was a really special time.

.Nan and Gram.
We're so grateful to our moms, both of which stayed with us throughout our first few weeks as parents. Thank you for being present in our home, getting up/staying up in the middle of the night, teaching us how to burp a floppy newborn, doing laundry, the list goes on and on. Thank you for showing us the ropes and most importantly, for leading by example. We love you. Thanks for loving our little man so much.

.Christmas Music.
Sanders' first few weeks were accompanied by constant Christmas music. I don't want to forget the enchantment of the two combined. I also don't want to forget Sanders' huge startles each time Carol of the Bells played on Pandora. :)

.Sanders' Smiles.
Sleep smile. 1 week old.

.Skarlett's arrival.
Meeting and holding my niece just 13 days after welcoming my own little one was precious beyond what words can describe. So was all the cousins, including Sanders, gathered together to meet her. (Never mind the pesky window pane. :)

Praise God from whom all blessings flow!
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Friday, February 1, 2013

Monthly Photo Chalk Sign: Before

I eyed this double-sided chalkboard sign a couple months back at a charming little shop in our town. Today I purchased it. The plan is to use it for Sanders' monthly photos. The wooden frame is in need of a makeover. What color would you paint it?

Input, please?

I'm pondering cream paint with a distressed finish. 

What do you think?
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