Thursday, March 19, 2015

Parenthood at 5.5 Months


Here we are. Five and a half months into parenthood. In short, it's amazing. It's so interesting how much I can love a little person that can do nothing for me. How happy seeing her little face makes me. She has what Hubs calls a "cuteness vortex." If she catches you in it, forget about productivity. Next thing you know it's an hour later and all you've done is repeat the same sound over and over to hear her laugh, or watched her try to do something as simple as reach a block just out of her grasp... and then put it in her mouth, because everything goes in her mouth.

Parenthood has brought my ingenuity to a whole new level. I can do pretty much anything one handed at this point. I've also learned to accept things being a bit messy.

BabyCakes is amazing. She has two teeth. She's rolling. She can sit up supported. She's expanded her diet from solely Breast milk. She smiles all the time. She's truly the happiest baby I know, and I love her to pieces.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Help me choose a new hairstyle.

I've never had a haircut before, and I think it's time. Coco Chanel said " A woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life." My life has already changed and I think it's about time my hair follows suit. Operation Hide My Edges has been going well but quite frankly I'm tired of hiding. The shape of my hair is so BLAH right now with the thinning in my edges and other areas due to postpartum shedding. I don't feel like managing my hair at this length anymore. I could make time for it, but I'd rather have less hair that takes less time, giving me more time for things like sleep, playing with my baby, and my ever growing TV backlog. 

I want a cut with shape. I want color. I want a change! I'm thinking of something like one of the looks below, or maybe something completely different, I don't know!

Which style do you like the best?




Thursday, February 5, 2015

Win a Valentine's Day Makeover!

Attention Philadelphia Naturals! Tressenoire is having a special contest. You can win a Valentine's Day Makeover, both hair and make-up. 

Who is Tressenoire? They are a traveling hair styling service in the NY, MD, Philly/NJ area. What makes them unique? They cater to women with natural hair! You could get anything from an up-do to to a professional twist-out all in the comfort of your home on your time. If you aren't in the mood for the traditional salon experience, this is a great service to try. They can style natural and transitioning hair. 

How do you enter? The image below has the exact rules. 


GOOD LUCK!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Get a Fitbit!


Hubs got me a Fitbit Flex for Christmas and I've really been enjoying it. If you aren't familiar, Fitbit is like a SUPER pedometer. Not only does it track your steps, it can also track your sleep, distance walked and calories burned. In the Fitbit app you can track your water intake. Probably my favorite feature is the alarm clock. Rather than a blaring tone, Fitbit gently wakes you up with the vibrating band. This comes in extra handy if I have the baby with me and she's sleeping but I'm waiting for the alarm to actually get out of bed. All of this wrapped in the package of a cute little wrist band. 

It has been pretty nice to have. The Fitbit really makes me more conscious of how many steps I'm taking and has made me get up and MOVE more. It's usefulness has only been amplified by the Challenges you can set up. You can create a daily step or goal challenge between you and friends. Five other people on my staff have a Fitbit, and the competition has really been keeping us on our toes...literally lol. We find ourselves just making laps inside around the building. 

Have you purchased any interesting Wellness products lately?

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Operation Hide My Edges


14 weeks postpartum, and postpartum hair shedding has hit. Particularly in my edges. 

Pregnant women's hair is gloriously long and thick because hormones keep the hair from shedding the usual 50 to 100 strands each day. Following delivery, when hormones start to return somewhat to normal, the hair shedding cycle catches up and hair begins to shed again. I've noticed a lot more shedding when I wash my hair, most noticeably around my hairline in the front. So, Operation Hide My Edges has begun. 

I'm doing this with a few different styles. I don't really like my hair in my face, but hair in my face styles cover my edges. The photo above is a twist out, in my face. I'm also doing wash and go's: 


Even with the hair somewhat pulled back here, in a wash and go my roots are so curly/fluffy that it kind of masks where my edges should be. Another method I'm doing is rolling my twists a little in the front, like a faux bang: 


And headbands, if I have one to match my current outfit:


There really is nothing that can be done. It's all hormonal. But, I am using Jamaican Black Castor Oil on my edges every other day or so, and not pulling too tight on them when styling. 

Have you dealt with thinning in your edges?
What was your plan of attack?

Sunday, December 21, 2014

What to Pack for Labor and Delivery

I have quite a few friends with babies on the way so I thought it would be useful to go through what I packed, what I used, and what I could have left home. Here was my list: 

Cellphone chargers: NEED

Birth CD: I didn't get to listen to any music because in the induction room I was in with another woman, and by the time I got to labor and delivery I couldn't even think about the room's atmosphere before I was whisked off to an emergency c section. But if I had been in a single room for the beginning of labor it would have been nice to have music.

Lotion: NEED. Unfortunately I brought a really perfumed Shea Moisture lotion with me so I didn't use it much, because I didn't know how it would react to babies skin. If I had to do things over, I would bring something with a more mellow, or no scent at all.

Flip Flops: Good for use in the shower.

Slippers: These were useful for when I was walking the halls. better than the hospital socks, but didn't expose my toes like my flip flops. I couldn't reach my toes at the end of pregnancy, so they were looking ROUGH lol.

Nursing Pillow: This was great to have while I was establishing nursing positions. I have the My Brest Friend Deluxe Pillow. I don't use this during the day anymore, but I still use it for night feedings, so she can fall asleep on it and it's easier to transfer her back to her crib. 

Going home outfit for baby: I brought one in newborn and one in 0-3 months. Even though she was almost 9lbs she still fit the newborn outfit.

Her first outfit. 


Pajamas, tank tops, going home outfit: all unnecessary. I wore the hospital gowns while I was there, and left in the same outfit I came in. 

Nursing Tanks/bras/pads: personally, my milk didn't come in until about an hour before we went home (3 days after birth) so I didn't need any nursing clothes and used my first pair of nursing pads on the way home. 

Belly Binder: I have this one and didn't wear it while in the hospital. The BIG mistake I made was not wearing it on the way home. Every bump the car hit on the way home was painful. I learned my lesson and always had it on for rides for the first couple of weeks. It really helped with abdominal pain and helping my organs get back to where they were supposed to be after the baby left a big space in there.

Socks: never used them. The hospital socks were much better.

Lanolin: my savior when I first started breastfeeding. I only had a cracked nipple for a few hours and no other nipples problems outside of normal soreness. If you are going to breastfeed, don't forget this. I don't know why hospitals don't provide it.

Underwear: never used. The hospital's mesh underwear are the way to go. I wish I had more to take home with me when I left!

What did you bring for labor and delivery?

Friday, December 12, 2014

Getting Started with Cloth Diapering


I am so excited by all the feedback from my previous post - My Cloth Diaper Experience. Multiple people wanted to know more about my favorite brands and types of diapers so I figured a follow-up post was in order. 

PURCHASING

I will only buy a diaper new/retail if I cannot find it on the Facebook Cloth Diaper Swap, or the Babycenter.com Cloth Diaper Swap. You'll save a lot of money on the swap boards, and it's also nice to help out other moms who are trying to monetize their unneeded diapers. I also sell my unneeded diapers on these boards. If you buy used, throw a 1/4 cup of bleach in a couple gallons of water and let the diapers soak for 30 minutes before washing them.

QUANTITY 

If you're diapering a newborn/infant you want to have about 34 changes if you want to wash every two days. If you're starting with an older baby, I would say start with having the same number as you use disposables per day. Sage goes through 6-10 diapers a day. She's currently nine weeks old.

SIZING

There are One Size diapers and there are sized diapers. Kinda like Small, Medium and Large clothes, vs. One size fits all clothes. Snaps, or a combination of snaps and velcro allow you to adjust the sizing. If you are starting from newborn you will likely need to buy some newborn sized diapers, and then you will move on to One Size or sized diapers after baby gets bigger. We moved into One Size diapers around six weeks. These One Size diapers will hopefully take her all the way through her diapered life.

EASE OF USE

The type of cloth diaper the most easy to use are called All in Ones. These diapers function the most like disposables. They have snaps or Velcro to easily put them on and take them off. My favorite brands of All in One Diaper is Blueberry Simplex and Thirsties. If you have a childcare provider these are usually the only type of cloth diapers accepted by daycare centers. 

The second easiest type of diaper that I have are pocket diapers. These function the same as All in Ones, except you have a pocket that you can stuff with different types of inserts to change the absorbency. These add some additional steps to laundry, because you have to unstuff and stuff the pockets before and after washing. All my pocket diapers are Bumgenius 4.0s

The third easiest type of diaper I own are fitted diapers. These diapers require two parts. A cloth portion that fits and snaps like a disposable, and a separate waterproof cover to go on top. My absolute favorite type of fitted diapers are Green Mountain Diaper Workhorses. And my favorite waterproof covers are Blueberry Diaper Coveralls. I should also note that the diapers in the photo above are also fitteds. Those are my two overnight diapers and I purchased them from a WAHM (work at home mom) on Etsy - Soothebaby

Another type of diaper, the fourth easiest,  that is used with a cover is called a pre-fold. You can do fancy folds with a prefold or just tri-fold it inside of a cover. That's what we do. Using pre-folds and covers are the absolute cheapest way to cloth diaper.

Note that I ranked these all easy, because no type of cloth diaper is really that hard. 

ABSORBENCY 

We very rarely have leaks. In my personal collection the two diapers that I can compare to disposables are my Bumgenius 4.0 pockets, and my Soothebaby fitteds. The others have good absorbency but get very wet on the inside, so I don't leave her in them long.  

Let me know if you have any other questions!