TCoM: Quick Tip

Quick Tip-diaper foldsKeep that diaper folded down.

When baby first arrives, we always folded down the top of the diaper until that little belly button healed. I’ve continued to do that in particular at nap time and bedtime to prevent the diaper from leaking. When Georgina started to crawl and become more active, she would sleep on her belly, knees under her and her little bum in the air. Well inevitably, during her nap or bedtimes, sleeping in that manner would cause a gap at the top of the diaper and the pee would run right out. This would obviously wake her up (and Mommy too!) for a change of the pjs and bedding.

Folded over diaper
Baby diaper folded in at the top as shown here on G’s Baby Dolly.

By folding the diaper in and down a little bit at the front, you’ll save yourself some laundry and have a rested baby! Let me know what diaper hacks you’ve used on your little one!

Happy folding! J.

My Top 8 Favorite Baby Products

My Top 8 Baby Products canvaWhen I found out Baby G was on the way, my favorite thing to do was peruse the usual baby gear websites, other blogs, etc to find the best items for my munchkin. Well, until you have that bundle of joy in your hands, you have no idea! At least I didn’t anyway. The following are 8 of my favorite items I used for myself and Baby G.

Boobs & Pumps

Medela1. Breast Pumps. My experience with breast feeding was unfortunately short lived when my little G was born… approximately 4 months. Not sure why the milk dried up as I tried everything to keep it going, but I gave her all I could during those 4 months anyway! I used the Medela Breast Pump, which my insurance company graciously provided to me for free. Just the basic pump and a few bottles; it didn’t come with the fancy tote bag you see on the link here or some baby websites, but that’s fine. If I needed to travel with it, a large purse or tote bag worked just fine. The pump is amazing with varying levels of suction and speed with easy to clean parts. Check with your insurance company as most will provide one to you for free!

2. Breast pads vs. Breast Shields. Breast pads are for when your milk comes in to prevent it from leaking into your bra and shirt. DON’T BUY THESE! I mean, you can if you want to of course, but think of it this way- sore, leaky nipple dries and sticks to the pad; then it’s like ripping off a band aid when you try to feed your baby again! A good friend told me about the Medela Softshell Breast Shields. These are a MUST HAVE item! Yes, you may feel like Madonna putting these into your bra, but the nipples will air dry and heal more quickly and make breast feeding easier. I wore these night and day. If you wear slightly thicker or padded bras, no one will ever know you have them in.

**A side note to the whole breastfeeding thing; an item I did not prefer: Lanolin (for treating sore nipples during breastfeeding)- bought it based on advice and multiple blog sites, only used it but one time. It was too waxy. The product says it’s safe for baby, but I felt weird not wiping it off prior to G breastfeeding.**

Baby Bottles

3. I used the yellow Medela bottles that are compatible with the Medela pump because G was only drinking a few ounces at first.

4. Then we got the Dr. Brown’s bottles. They have two additional parts to the bottle, which is more to clean, but definitely is worth it. They prevent extra air from getting in as she’s drinking as well as preventing the inversion of the bottle’s nipple. She’s never had an issue with gas or colic!

Ointments

There are so many different creams, pastes and ointments out there to choose from! And it’s so hard to choose, but here are few from my experience.

A&D Ointment
Great for preventing diaper rash on your little one. A little goes a long way!

5. A&D Ointment– great for preventing diaper rash. I use the A&D every day with every diaper to stay ahead of any rash. G just turned 17 months old and we still use it everyday!

6. Desitin Cream– great for treating diaper rash. Although we’ve had to use it maybe one or 2 times, it works like a charm. A little difficult to wipe off between diaper changes, but still effective.

7. NoseFrida- Best product to remove mucus from your little one’s stuffy nose and it works so well! Listen, don’t be afraid like I was…you won’t suck up anything into your mouth! There is a little sponge there to save you. Plus it comes with a bunch of placement sponges if your child is extra snotty.

Diapers

Pampers Swaddlers8. Pampers Swaddlers– the best disposable diaper. And now that G is walking, we are using the Pampers Cruisers. I have tried other brands as well. Huggies Pull-Ups are a definite MUST when potty training starts! These are great because they also open at the sides for easy removal. When first starting out with your newborn though, usually you will need size 1‘s. The size 2‘s, while the most popular size in diapering, will be too big for your little one…unless you have a 10-lber!

What are YOUR favorites?!

These are some of the items that worked for us, but remember, every baby is different. Every mom and dad are different, so if you have a question about a product, check with the manufacturer or your pediatrician prior to use.  I’d love to hear your stories and see which products are YOUR favorites!

The Lost & The Found

The Lost & The Found canva

Tragedy- The Lost

This past week we’ve seen two celebrities, seemingly happy and prosperous, take their own lives in unimaginable ways. I’m speaking of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain. Two very famous, self-made and successful people. Both plagued by mental health issues that were wholly unknown to the rest of us. But what about all the other people on this planet wrought with the same mental illnesses? Their names are not mentioned in the press. They are remembered only by their friends an family.

The conversation needs to start with each one of us. There is no shame in having a health issue, mental or otherwise. The mind is part of our body and sometimes that needs treatment as well. There should be no shame in speaking about our problems or seeking out a professional for help. People who truly love you will not judge you or shame you or embarrass you for seeking the help you need. If you or someone you know need help, please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. They have experienced people available 24 hours a day and great information on their website as well. Please reach out if you are in need.

Tragedy- The Found

The past week also brought us the most heartbreaking story of Baby June found in Boynton Beach. And as a mom of a two and a half year old, I can’t even speak about this story without tearing up. Being pregnant is hard. Birthing a child is hard. Not to mention all of the challenges and sometimes family drama that goes along with it. And if you don’t have a support system to help you, the outlook on life can be overwhelming for a new mom. There is ALWAYS an alternative. Adoption for one. Two of my best friends have been actively trying to adopt for the past year and circumstances out of their control in each situation have prevented them from bringing home a child of their own. There are people out there who are ready, willing and able to take a child in. Florida’s Safe Haven law is another alternative.

Safe Haven Capture

There are Safe Haven locations throughout the state: “any hospital, emergency medical service station or fire station with full time emergency medical technicians paramedics, or fire fighters”. These places can accept your newborn child, up to 7 days old with no questions asked. There is no threat against prosecution. There is no reason for babies to be abandoned in the State of Florida with this law in place. If you have questions, please visit A Safe Haven For Newborns.com. There’s no reason for the news to report on another Baby June.

Love and peace to everyone. J

547.5 Days

547.5 Days.

That number sounds like forever ago. I can’t believe that 547.5 days ago, Baby G came into our lives. She is such a different little person now. Constantly chattering and saying “hi” to almost every passerby. She knows who her Mama and Dada are and of course she can pick her buddy “Col” (her short for Cole) out of a photo. “Uh-oh”, “no way”, “moo”, “baa”, “meow” and her new favorite “eeewwww” are just some of the things she is saying. She knows where her eyes, nose, mouth and ears are and will practically take out your eye pointing yours out (she did that to me the other day and I was almost blinded by that little pointer finger!).  There’s no more walking, only running and she is loves seeing new things; pointing out airplanes and the moon in the sky to name a few.  Most of the time, you’ll get an “Oooooh” when she sees it.

Start, Stop; Start, Stop.

I truly wish there existed a pause button for life sometimes. I don’t want to miss a thing she says or does and while I’m grateful for the ladies at the daycare who are teaching her so much, I would love to be that teacher for her. At the same time, I’m excited to wake up everyday to see what she is going to do or say next! And based on her constant chatter, I cannot wait until she starts using actual words to have a conversation. I wish I knew baby talk because she knows exactly what she is saying and with so much conviction as well!

Fearless.

Baby G truly has no fear. The most curious child I’ve ever seen.  She will run into the ocean or pool at full speed. She climbs step stools and has all but mastered the steps to the 2nd floor of our home. She will reach out and touch any animal or creature in the touch tank at the aquarium.  While scary at times (i.e. the climbing of the step stools), I couldn’t be more proud of her wanting to try new things. I hope that stays with her all of her life. Love you G. XO

BabyG_StepStool2
“I climbed up here all by myself!”

The Trifecta of Baby Books + 1

Book Report Time! 

So technically I’m reviewing 4 books today instead of just three because before you realize it, that little baby of yours will be getting ready to try solid foods! And that 4th book will be a helpful resource later on when you are wondering what the heck to feed her and in what combinations.

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As you can probably guess by my selection of books is that I tend toward the scientific books. Who better to write a book than multiple pediatricians or even a developmental molecular biologist?!

The Trifecta

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1) The book “The Mayo Clinic Guide to Pregnancy: From Doctors Who Are Parents Too!” is such a great read! It’s organized and well written with so much information. It touches on every aspect of pregnancy, including exercise, the different types of births, breast feeding, diapering, etc. And because it’s written by actual doctors, it gave me an extra piece of mind that the information was accurate. I always did, however, run the information by my own ob/gyn before G’s birth or pediatrician after she was born. It’s advisable check with your doctor before implementing something new for your baby!

2) The book “Brain Rules for Baby: How to raise a smart and happy child from Zero to Five” was written by that biologist, John Medina. This book talks about the science behind children’s behavior: studies on how to praise your child to promote a “growth mindset” based on effort, not the child’s actual intelligence; what attachment theory really is and what to do when everyone’s emotions are running high. The chapter on dealing with temper tantrums is genius as well;-)  One of my favorite excerpts from this book is the following: “Write this across your heart before your child comes into the world: ‘Parenting is not a race. Kids are not proxies for adult success.’ Competition can be inspiring, but brands of it can wire your child’s brain in a toxic way. Comparing your kids with your friends’ kids will not get them, or you, where you want to go.”  Go with what you know for YOUR child. It’s a natural mindset for all of us to compare what our child does to little Johnny down the street. But each child in this world is different and progresses at their own rate…we need to let them do that.

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3) The next book I wanted to mention is titled: “Caring For Your Baby and Young Child: Birth to Age 5 by the American Academy of Pediatrics“.  I received this book after signing up for the Baby Club at our local grocery store. They sent this book to me for FREE. Check the local grocery store near you, they may have a similar program! We also get a monthly news letter and coupons for the store.  This book has every detail you can possibly imagine. I refer to it multiple times per week; it’s more like an encyclopedia of baby knowledge really. It even has sections on infant and baby CPR as well.

The “Plus 1”

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The 4th book is “The Amazing Make-Ahead Baby Food Book” by Dr. Lisa Barrangou. She is a food scientist and expert when it comes to mixing flavors! This books provides step by step program for how what fruits/veg to buy and how to prepare them in three 1-hour sessions, so you’re not spending 3 full hours at the counter at one time. You can do it over a few days. Throughout the book you’ll find instructions for pureeing each food, how to freeze it, thaw and serve to baby. Some people may think this book it ‘too simple’ for them, but let me tell you, once your little one arrives, you need simple. At least I did! My brain was mush there for a while! There is also a chapter on combining puree recipes and even one on finger foods, which is great for when baby starts feeding herself.

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When I bought the book, I also stopped by my local housewares store to buy the silicon trays or you can order them online. They come in a 2 pack for about $9.99. When removing the frozen cubes from the trays though, you will need to let them set on the counter for a minute or so to loosen up. Expect to have cold fingers by the time you’re done transferring them to the ziplock bags!

All 4 books were good reads before, during & after baby arrived!  What are some of you favorites?!

Our IVF Journey to G

So hubby and I began trying to conceive the old fashioned way in 2013-2014. However, with his travel schedule (he works in the oil industry for 4 weeks at a time) and (what we found out later was) a low supply of eggs on my part, we just weren’t getting pregnant. I was 40 in 2014 and things still weren’t happening. I talked to my ob/gyn and got some recommendations for local IVF doctors. I vetted a few out and eventually went with Dr. Moshe Peress in Boca Raton. He and his staff are so friendly, helpful and professional.

Dr. Peress felt that due to my age and low supply of eggs that we forgo the usual drugs (Clomid, etc.) and IUI (Intrauterine Insemination) and go directly to the IVF (InVitro Fertilization) process. Thankfully my insurance through work covered all but the deductible for this entire process, otherwise the out of pocket costs would be around $18,000. This was a true blessing as my husband’s insurance does not cover any infertility treatments.

So Feb 2, 2015, we started the process. I met with a nurse at Dr. Peress’ office and she walked me through the process of home injections with the hormones I would need to “plump” up my eggs for retrieval. Two shots in the morning and 1 shot in the evening. For someone who hates needles, I still do NOT know how I gave them to myself for a week prior to the retrieval. The egg retrieval was completed under anesthesia the following week and 4 eggs were taken out. Three of the eggs were mature enough to attempt to fertilize. Two of the embryos made it to day 4 of 5 and only 1 embryo made it to day 5. That one was the winner! She was already coming out looking for something to attach to (aka my uterus). On 2/17/15, that embryo was inserted back in to my uterus. The embryologist at Dr. Peress’ office (and I cannot remember his name to save my life!) truly loves his job. We sat in his office for about 30 minutes prior to the procedure to talk about the embryo and procedure itself. He even gave me a photo of Baby G from under the microscope prior to her implantation. What a loving, talented man. Heaven-sent for sure.

On Friday 2/27/15, I went in to the doctor’s office that morning at 8am for my blood test to see if we were pregnant. I didn’t do the pee test as I was cautiously optimistic and didn’t want to get my hopes up at all. I’ve never done anything like this before, so who knows if it’s going to work!  Around lunchtime, Amy from Dr. Peress’ office called to let me know that the procedure was a success and we were expecting! I couldn’t believe it. We were going to have a baby! I shared the news with hubby via email unfortunately because he was out of the country and I couldn’t call him. He was over the moon! I shared the news with a few select friends and family, but not everyone. The official announcement would come later.  Our story is precious to me. To think that there are men and women on this earth so talented and skilled to be able to make this happen for us, is truly amazing. They are a Godsend to us and to all of the people they help.

I love telling people this story and in the shortened version, we technically got pregnant in the span of a month, without hubby even being in the country and in a petri dish before my body was!

First photo of Baby G already “breaking out of her shell”.

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Chronicles-2017

Welcome! The Chronicles of Mommy will be host to a lot of different information about preparing for motherhood, the first few months after the little one arrives and the ensuing aftermath of his/her teething, eating solids, walking and other random topics.  I hope you enjoy and find the info helpful!

This is Baby G, aka G-Money, Chubbs Miller, Munchkin. She came into our lives Nov 2015 and life has never been the same. She brings joy and laughter to us every single day. We love her to the moon and back. I had this Andy Warhol-style canvas made in honor of her 1st birthday and the photo we used truly captures her spirit! XO

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