Browsing Tag

newborn

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Motherhood + Baby

Henry’s 5 Month Update!

Time is surely flying! It’s hard to believe Henry has been with us for five months already! I know it’s SO cliche.. but where does the time go?!

In all honesty (because I’m very honest about motherhood!), Henry’s fifth month of life hasn’t been my favorite. Not only have we been battling his reflux and trying to find the best remedy to keep him comfy, but he’s cutting his first tooth. The combo of those two with his new skill of rolling onto his belly has caused what is known in the mama world as the dreaded “4 month sleep regression.” So with that being said, I’ve been drinking more coffee than usual lately! Although this past month was tough, I still make sure that I enjoy and cherish every moment – good or bad – and remain optimistic about next month. Here’s what else has happened in the past month: Continue Reading

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Motherhood + Baby

Henry’s 3 Month Update!

Henry has officially graduated from the “fourth trimester.” If you’re a new mama, you know exactly what the fourth trimester is all about – am I right?! For those of you who have never heard the term (or just thought it was a cute play on words), the fourth trimester is the first three months of your babe’s life when they are adjusting to the great big world around them. It’s the period of time when they need to be swaddled, feel the warmth of your body and are figuring out the whole day/night thing (more on that later). While time is flying by WAYYYY too fast, I’m so happy with where we are now and how much Henry has grown in the last few months. Here are our updates:

Stats:

Weighing in at 15 lbs & 24 inches
Sleeping 10 hours at night

New skills:

Big happy smiles, rolling from tummy to back, grabbing (ouch!) and making lots of new (baby dinosaur-like😆) sounds!

Loving:

Mornings, this Jumperoo (on sale!), drying off after the bath, this super soft & cozy swaddle (this company gives a swaddle to a child in need with every purchase!) for naps, the Noggin Stick, chatting it up with Mama, seeing Dad come home from work, spending time with the Grandparents & two Aunts and of course.. MILK!

Hating:

The carseat, being tired & overstimulated. Did I mention the carseat? 😐

Looking Forward To:

Our new Mommy & Me classes, the possibility of introducing solids in the next few months, more adventures out & about, planning our first family vacation & hopefully some big baby belly laughs!

We’ve come to learn and realize a lot about our baby in such a short period of time. It’s crazy to see how these tiny humans have preferences already, as well as strong likes and dislikes. Henry takes his longest naps when we’re out and about.. the louder the better! He knows when it’s not his Dad giving him his last feeding before bed & lets you know he knows. Henry is learning his routine just like we are. He yawns the minute I put him into his nighttime bath, every time! He’s not just a sleep-all-day newborn anymore.

I’m really trying to soak up every moment. Every time he falls asleep on my shoulder, I never want him to let go. And when he smiles, I just want to forever engrain that image in my mind. This, for me, is the hardest part of mamahood – trying to freeze time, moments and feelings. As much as I can’t wait to see the boy & man he will become, I want his little baby self to stay forever too. On that note, cheers to the next month!

If you guys have any questions about our new parenthood life, please leave them below!

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Motherhood + Baby

How Is He Sleeping?

That’s one of the most popular questions asked when you have a newborn at home. Everyone knows, whether a veteran mama or someone who’s only seen a diaper in a TV commercial, that a newborn baby doesn’t allow their parents much sleep in those first few months. However, I was determined for all of us to get a good night’s sleep. I thrive on routine, schedules and to-do lists. And while parenthood has taught me that things definitely don’t always (maybe “rarely” is a better word 😂) go as planned, I set out right away to get Henry on some type of schedule that shortly became our “new normal.” So when friends ask me, “How’s Henry sleeping?” I can answer them bright eyed and bushy tailed with “like a champ!” How did we do it? Keep reading to find out! 👇🏻

When I was pregnant, I was quite the bookworm (I am in general, actually). I was particularly drawn to the book “Baby Wise” and what they had to say about getting your baby to sleep through the night, especially the part where it said it would happen sooner than later! Babies, like myself, also thrive on routine and begin to learn “what happens next” in their day. That was music to my ears. Soon enough, I began implementing the Baby Wise principles paired with the “Moms On Call” schedule and Henry started sleeping ALL. NIGHT. LONG. Yes mamas, it CAN happen! For us, it’s all about our day & night routines which look like this:

**This routine/schedule worked for us but obviously might not work for every baby. I would recommend reading Baby Wise and Moms on Call for more information and tips! If you are a family with an unpredictable nighttime schedule (ie out until different times every night), this won’t work for you.

6:30-7am: Henry wakes up (like clockwork) & has his first feeding of the day. We let light into his room and change his clothes so he knows it’s not nighttime any longer.

8/8:15am: Henry hangs with Dad before he goes to work while I get ready for my day with him. So when hubs leaves for the day around 8-8:15, I take Henry on a stroll in the Baby Bjorn. We do this EVERY morning and I love seeing how much more aware Henry is of his surroundings as the days go by. He will typically take a cat nap between his first and second feedings of the day.

9:30am: Henry’s next feeding, activity time & then naptime. We do tummy time, read a book, practice rolling over, etc. If I have errands to run, I typically do them around this time with him and he will nap in the carseat/stroller.

12:30pm: Henry’s next feeding, activity time & then naptime.

3:30pm: Henry’s next feeding, activity time & then naptime. Usually after this feeding we hang in the nursery for a little bit and read & listen to music or he will watch me put away his clothes.

6:30pm: Henry’s next feeding, activity time & then naptime. Naptime is often shorter during this period. We start dimming the lights around the house at this time of day so Henry knows it’s not party time any longer!

8:30pm: This is when we begin our “nighttime routine.” At 8:30pm sharp, I start his bath. While the bath is filling, hubby hangs with Henry and I set out his pjs and clothes for the following day with their respective diapers (use an overnight diaper at night! That is KEY!), get the bottle ready (Dad feeds Henry before bed with a bottle) and get the swaddle in place & ready to go. Once the bath is all set, I bathe H for about 10-15 minutes and keep the atmosphere calm & relaxed (low voice and no excessive excitement). He starts yawning in the tub – it’s too cute!

After the bath, I get him diapered and dressed in his pjs. I turn down the lights, turn on the sound machine and the ceiling projector, and Dad knows that’s his cue. Henry gets swaddled in his Halo SleepSack (arms free) and fed while listening to lullabies (around 9-9:15pm). When all is said and done, our sleepy baby gets tucked into his DockATot (SO NECESSARY) and settles himself to sleep.

This routine has worked for us since Henry was between 5 & 6 weeks old. The first few nights we tried this consistently and had our DockATot, he gave us 6 hour stretches. So we knew we were on to something! We stuck with it and soon enough he started skipping that 3am waking time. The first time he slept until 6am we were SO HAPPY (and kinda worried – but the pediatrician reassured us this was okay based on his weight/age!). The important thing to do is keep the morning and nighttime feedings around the same time every day. So if H wakes up at 6:30 OR 7am, he still eats again at 9:30. Depending on the day, sometimes this schedule will fluctuate by a half hour — but I haven’t let it change much more than that. Soon enough, H should be transitioning to go even longer between his feedings and sleeping even longer at night. I’ll keep you updated if anything changes!

Motherhood + Baby

Top Newborn Must-Haves

Being a new mama is so many things – exciting, amazing, emotional, terrifying and overwhelming just to name a few of these new feelings. All of a sudden your mind becomes consumed by this tiny human that never existed before – and I’ve heard that that never goes away! I’m always wondering if I’m doing what’s best for Henry with every decision and I think I’ll do that for the rest of my days. When I was pregnant, I read so many articles and blog posts on the quest for the best products for new moms and newborns, but I never really felt like one single post had everything I was looking for. So now that I have (a little) experience under my belt and somewhat of a routine in our newly adjusted household, I figured this was the best time to share what products and gadgets are working for our little family!

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1. DockATot Deluxe:

I had seen this product on Instagram and around the internet long before Henry arrived but really couldn’t justify spending almost $200 on a “pillow.” But when Henry arrived and I realized just how precious sleep was, I quickly changed my mind! So when Cyber Monday rolled around, I bit the bullet and ordered our first DockATot. Let me tell you, this thing is a lifesaver and not just a “pillow!” The first night we used it, our little babe slept SEVEN hours straight at just 6 weeks old. I’m a believer!

2. Baby Bjorn Bouncer:

For Henry’s first five weeks of life, this chair sat in the corner collecting dust. Until one day, not even the Mamaroo could make the little dude happy, so we had to try something new. We pulled out the Baby Bjorn chair and it has quickly become our household favorite! While Henry can’t bounce it himself yet and we do have to sit there and bounce it for him, he absolutely loves it and is so peaceful when he’s bouncing away. When he has better head/neck control, he’ll be able to bounce it on his own. In the meantime, it’s a mini workout for mom & dad.

3. White Noise Machine:

Who knew that babies loved sleeping to such weird sounds like white noise and vacuum cleaners?! From the very beginning, after reading books like Moms on Call and the like, we knew we would need some type of sound machine. Not only does it comfort our baby, but it also drowns out any noise we might be making in the other room (ie a clumsy mama in the kitchen!). We use this one and it hasn’t let us (or Henry) down, but there are a ton out there.

4. Halo SleepSack Swaddles:

We all know how important it is to swaddle our babies when they’re born – it keeps them cozy and reminds them of their first home in our bellies where they had tight quarters to say the least. However, during those middle of the night feedings when you’re a total mombie, it can be tough to swaddle a flailing baby well. So whoever invented the Halo SleepSack, I thank you. You put your babe in and pull their arms through the openings, zip it up, and then use the velcro panels to swaddle your little one tight.

5. Audio Only Monitor:

Of course we purchased the fancy video monitor before our baby arrived just like everyone told us to. But what they didn’t mention was that if you use a white noise machine, either you have to listen to said white noise ALL NIGHT LONG while you’re trying to sleep or risk not hearing your little one cry by turning the volume down too much. After some research, my husband found this VTech audio monitor that allows you to change the sound sensitivity so that it will only alert you when your baby is crying and completely drowns out your sound machine! Genius! So now we can see him on the video monitor and hear him on the audio monitor.

6. 4moms Tub:

The 4moms baby tub takes all the guess work out of determining whether your baby’s bath water is too hot or too chilly because it comes with a built in thermometer! It’s a little on the large side, so we use it in the regular bathtub where it fits perfectly. We purchased this insert to go inside so it’s a bit more comfortable for him and it helps prop him up a bit more while he’s still small.

7. Moms on Call:

If you’re like me, you thrive on routine. Getting my baby on a schedule was always a priority to me and I knew this long before I ever experienced my first 4am feeding. While Henry was napping one day, I downloaded this book to my iPad and started researching how to best get him on a schedule. This book, which relies on a beginning and end of the day set feeding time, combined with our new DockATot has really improved our sleep around here! Another helpful book is Baby Wise – whichever one works best for your family.

Some other tips I’ve found very useful:

Sleep ‘gowns’ are amazing. While the zip up pajamas and onesies are great and cute, the bottomless gowns are the best during those late night diaper changes when you don’t have to deal with zippers and snaps in the dark.

Don’t waste your money on a bottle sterilizer. Whether your significant other is helping out with feedings with your expressed milk or you’re formula feeding (or both!), you can simply use a large bowl and fill it with hot soapy water to clean your bottles. These sterilizer bags are also great and each bag can be used to to 20 times in the microwave.

You can’t have too many burp cloths.

Always have the next size diaper on hand. They grow out of that newborn size quickly! Our little guy is already bordering size two.

I’ve been peed on a handful of times already. Always cover your babe’s “spout” if you have a boy on your hands! Of course, it has happened twice in public. While many people said Peepee Teepees are a waste, I’ve found them helpful for this particular reason.

Keep late night feedings boring for your baby. Keep the lights dim (or off if you can), don’t change their diaper unless necessary (and use nighttime diapers that last longer!), don’t chat them up, etc. That way, they won’t be too riled and will hopefully fall back to sleep easily. If I have to change the diaper, I swaddle him right after instead of waiting until I put him back in the crib. Sometimes just swaddling him will wake him a bit and doing it ahead of time makes the transition from feeding to bedtime easier.

If you’re pumping, order extra pump parts! It’s so helpful to not have to continuously wash the parts. You can also keep them in the fridge and reuse them a couple times without washing them. I have a set for daytime and a set for nighttime. Anything that saves time is worth the investment.

Go for walks. During those first few months when you can’t tote your baby around Target, walks are a lifesaver. Not only will you get some fresh air and exercise, but your baby will enjoy it (or nap) too.

When friends, family and neighbors offer help, take it! We need it! If grandma offers to babysit for an hour just so you can get out and run an errand or hit your local Starbucks, do it. As much as you don’t want to leave your little one, a happy mom equals a happy baby. And cabin fever does NOT equal a happy mama!

I’ll be doing a post soon on my favorite new mama must-haves! Stay tuned.