POSTPARTUM & NEWBORN MUST-HAVES.

HAPPY FEBRUARY! It’s been a little over two months since I’ve given birth to Eloise and I thought it would be helpful to share with you my postpartum & newborn must haves! There are so many products out there to choose from, that it can be a little overwhelming.

POSTPARTUM MUST-HAVES:

Get yourself some good vitamins! Your body needs to replenish itself and get the needed vitamins and nutrients, especially if you’re breastfeeding/pumping. My little sister got me these vitamins from Whole Foods & I love them. Side note: I have read some reviews of people having a decrease in their milk supply- but it hasn’t happened to me. So just be aware of that!

Right after giving birth? Get perineal spray! Your lady bits will thank you. Although I had a really GOOD recovery (mind you, I didn’t tear at ALL), some others have a harder time healing- so I highly recommend this perineal spray. I used mine for about a 3-4 weeks & didn’t need it anymore. Some things I love about this brand? It doesn’t have any parabens or artificial fragrance + made with organic herbs.

Next up: NIPPLE CREAM! The first two weeks of trying to breastfeed I had cracked nipples. No joke, they were so messed up & I was in SO MUCH PAIN. This organic nipple butter did wonders! It healed my nipples right up (also, I had to stop breastfeeding to help the healing process, but that’s for another blog post altogether!) This is the same Earth Mama brand that I love.

Something that I’m using every single day- breast pads. You don’t need to get any specific brand, as I think Target’s breast pads work great! Leaking is so annoying!

NEWBORN MUST-HAVES:

There had been many times where Ellie was gassy/uncomfortable & gas drops were such an important part of helping her feel better. We got her these gas drops (you can get from Target or Walmart) & they worked wonders! I highly recommend gas drops or gripe water to relieve them of any discomfort! A screaming baby is NOT fun to deal with ūüôĀ

Next up: infant probiotics. Not everyone will agree with this, but I think giving your baby probiotics is important. It’s good for their digestive system & gut. This particular brand I linked is from Amazon, but I buy mine from Whole Foods. Ellie got really bad baby acne when she was 2-3 weeks old, and I really think this contributed to help clear it up.

My next product for baby is a game changer. I heard about this product from my sister, and once I used this product for just 3 days, it made Eloise’s skin perfect! Like I mentioned above, Eloise got baby acne, and once I started her on probiotics it started to get better! But once I put on Tubby Todd All Over Ointment, it went away completely! I love this stuff & can’t rave more about it! You can literally use it everywhere: for cradle cap, diaper rashes, baby acne, rough patches, cuts & scrapes, etc. I HIGHLY recommend! 5/5 stars.

These items are my top picks & I hope at least one person can find these helpful/useful. Of course there are other items like the mamaroo, snuggle me organic infant lounger, a really good pump (I use this Medela one that I got through my insurance), bottles (if you’re exclusively pumping/giving formula- I love these ones!), and lastly a nice baby carrier (this one is so easy to use & inexpensive!).

I hope you all have an amazing month ahead! Valentine’s day is right around the corner… would you all like to see what I’m getting my daughter for her 1st Valentine’s Day? I could do a fun “gift” idea post!

xo

*** All reviews/thoughts are my own. This is not a sponsored post, I bought all items with my own money.

ELOISE IS TWO MONTHS OLD!

I’ve been so busy being a new mom, blogging has taken the backseat. I’m still trying to figure out how to balance my time! Since Eloise is still so small, she isn’t on a set “schedule” yet, so she sleeps when she sleeps! I try and get housework done, eat or catch up on some of my favorite shows when I have some downtime .

Anyhow, Eloise is officially TWO MONTHS OLD! Holy moly. She’s 10lbs 6oz, and is getting her first set of shots tomorrow! I’m so not looking forward to my baby girl crying & being in pain! It’s going to be the saddest thing ever.

Ellie went on her first road trip to Southern California & did amazing! I’m so proud of her! She didn’t cry at all, and slept most of the way. She met her great-grandma for the first time, and it was so special. I am so grateful that my grandma is around for this chapter in my life.

Ellie also got to spend time with her cousin, Adelaide! I love seeing my niece. She is 5 months old, and is smiling so much. She reaches and grabs for Eloise, and it’s the cutest thing ever. I can’t believe our babies are growing up so fast!

Here are some pictures of Eloise Audrey Colette:

It’s been a fun and tiring month, and we just love watching this little girl grow! I have to say, I’m looking forward to seeing her smile more & hopefully laugh very soon!

SOME GOALS FOR 2019

Happy 2019 everyone! I’m really excited for the new year. Now that Eloise is with us, I’m thinking of all the memories we are going to make this year! There will be a lot of “firsts”, and I just want to make sure I soak it all in.

2019 GOALS:

read more books (my goal is 5-8 books this year)

go back to school in the fall (juggle being a full-time student & mommy)

practice gratitude/ be more positive

pay off debt & save more money

go on one family vacation

blog more & write more

go on more walks & be outdoors more

I really wanted to make goals that were attainable to reach… how many times have you made goals that were just unrealistic? I have, and it’s a waste of time. So, this year I’m focusing on things that matter: my family, hobbies, finances, etc. What are some goals you have for 2019?

ELOISE IS ONE MONTH OLD!

As of the 30th, Eloise is officially 1 month old! As I sit and type this, I cannot believe how quickly this month has flown by. I won’t lie and say this month has been rainbows and sunshine… because it hasn’t. This month has been extremely hard, exhausting, and at times frustrating.

My biggest struggle this month has been breastfeeding. Not only was I in so much pain because her latch wasn’t good, but I developed mastitis and needed to get on antibiotics. It is FINALLY getting better, and I’m able to breastfeed Eloise more. Thank goodness. Breastfeeding is NO joke, and I always thought it was something that was going to come easy and natural… that isn’t the case at all. I’m glad I didn’t give up, and I was able to get help from my lactation consultant and have endless support from Dexter.

Eloise is gaining weight perfectly, and is a healthy girl. She is 8lbs 12oz. Eloise loves to sleep, loves to be held by her daddy, and loves drinking her milk. She is small (that’s why I call her my fairy girl) but she is feisty & so strong. She has amazing neck strength, and can hold her head up by herself. We are so in love with this little girl— she is going to be a daddy’s girl for sure. I’m pretty much chopped liver over here, and I GAVE BIRTH TO HER! HA!

I’m looking forward to watching her grow, and making memories as a family. The first month was HARD, and exhausting! But I wouldn’t have done it without having such an amazing partner. Dexter has been the one to get up with Eloise, while I’m pumping every 3 hours. Dex will let me sleep in a few more hours, and makes sure I’m eating. Having Dexter be on baby bonding leave has been truly incredible! I will be so sad when he has to go back to work.

ONE MONTH HIGHLIGHTS: Ellie has gone to Target, the park, and on her first long car ride to Marshall & Bodega Bay. She celebrated her first holiday- CHRISTMAS! Eloise has been to three restaurants with us already (and did SO GOOD)! She still fits in Newborn clothing.

I can’t wait to see what milestones month two brings! I hope you all have a Happy New Year! I’m so excited for 2019!

ELOISE AUDREY COLETTE: BIRTH STORY

Hi everyone! It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Well, a lot has happened! It’s been 15 days since Eloise was born, and I need to write her birth story down before I forget it all. But lets be honest, a lot of it’s blurry already. So weird how the brain basically wipes away such a painful experience.¬†

So, starting from the beginning…

On Thursday morning, November 29th, I woke up randomly around 4-5 am (which is so strange because I am not an early riser) and I just felt wide awake. I started to text my twin sister because she’s awake early for work. Dexter was getting ready for work, and when I got up to use the restroom I noticed my pantyliners were soaked. I knew that wasn’t normal, because that never happened before (and it was clear liquid). I made a mental note, and told Dexter, “Hey, my pantyliners were soaked! I wonder if my water broke! Make sure to keep your phone on you at all times, just incase it’s time.” Eeeeek! By now, I was EXACTLY 39 week pregnant, mind you. I told my twin sister and mom about my soaked pantyliner and told them I’d call if anything else happened. Dexter left for work, and I went about my normal day. I was having inconsistent contractions, but not really sure if it was the real deal.¬†

Fast forward to around 6:30pm, Dex came home from work. I was sitting on our living room couch, and we were all talking when all of a sudden I stood up and felt a small gush. Dex said, “Your sweatpants are wet!” I’m not sure why, but I instantly freaked out and ran to the bathroom. Sure enough, my underwear and sweatpants were soaked! But for some reason I was still unsure if my water broke… I think I was in total denial! (this was around 7pm) I called Kaiser to see if I should come in, and they told me to lay down for 30 minutes and if I stand up and I’m leaking to come in. So, I did just that.

It was clear that I was leaking, so we decided to pack the rest of our hospital bags, get the baby’s carseat, and drive to the hospital.¬† Now, if you were wondering if I was having horrible contractions… I wasn’t. I was definitely timing them, and they were around 5-6 minutes apart, but VERY tolerable. We arrived at the hospital around 8:30-9:00pm.¬†

Once we got to the hospital, I went into the triage room to get monitored and to test the liquid to see if my water broke. It tested back: POSITIVE! My waters did indeed break. I was so shocked! Looking back, I’m not sure why I was in such shock, clearly it was my water that broke! Haha! I think a lot of it had to do with not knowing what to expect since this was my first time being pregnant, and going into labor. The Midwife decided to admit me, not only because my water broke, but also because my heart rate, and baby’s heart rate were elevated. They brought us to our room, and started an IV and gave me fluids. (around 10pm)

This is when things get blurry for me! At around 11:30pm my contractions really started to come on strong and HURT LIKE A BITCH. A doctor came in and wanted to start me on Pitocin because I wasn’t even a full centimeter dilated yet. So, they started the Pitocin at 1:20am (November 30th). So from 11:30pm to 1:20am I was having the WORST back labor pains. Once they gave me the Pitocin at 1:20am, I asked for some type of pain relief. They ended up giving me two doses of Fentanyl. Honestly, it helped only a little bit. The pain was all in my back, and it was by far the worst pain I ever experienced in my LIFE. I had Dexter rub my back, I used heating pads, and plus the two doses of Fentanyl, but it wasn’t enough relief. I finally got an epidural at around 5am.¬†

Getting the epidural was the best decision, personally. I admire women who do without it, but mentally I couldn’t. The pain was so excruciating! My nurses and anesthesiologist were AMAZING. I was so scared of getting the epidural, I started crying before getting it. They were kind and talked me through the entire process. They were angels. They kept me calm, and let me feel the emotions I was feeling! Also, getting the epidural, wasn’t horrible at all. I had this image in my head, and it wasn’t at all what I expected. So if you’re terrified to get the epidural, the first initial prick (to numb you) is only the worst part & it lasts a whole 3 seconds.¬†

So, from here on out, was a lot of waiting until I was 10cm dilated. I don’t really remember sleeping that much, or even at all! My sisters and mom finally arrived at the hospital around noon. I was so happy my twin and mom were able to make it on time, since they had to drive up from Southern California! I really wanted them all in the room with me when I delivered Eloise. Finally, after a lot of waiting, around 5pm I was 10cm dilated. It was time to push.

To help me feel the contractions, they had to turn down my epidural (UGH, hello horrible back labor pains) and adjust the Pitocin (since my contractions were a little far apart). I had the most AMAZING nurse coaching me, and helping me mentally. I was terrified and so emotional, so before pushing I broke down again. (You guys, I cried so much during my labor) Her name was D.L. and I will never forget her kind and encouraging words to help me get through the hardest experience of my life. I pushed for two whole hours before Eloise was born. And it was the most exhausting two hours of my life. During pushing, I had the WORST acid reflux/heartburn, and it was really fucking up the way I was trying to focus pushing. So the nurse brought me tums to try and help with the acid reflux. I also could feel so much of my back labor pains, so when a contraction came… it was not fun. Dexter held one leg, and my mom was able to hold my other leg while I pushed. Once Eloise’s head was poking out, Dexter was able to touch her, and I could see her in a mirror, and I also touched her head.¬†

Then at 7:52pm, on November 30th, Eloise Audrey Colette was born. But the final pushes were the hardest, since the Midwife was having a hard time getting her out. The cord was wrapped around her neck two times, so when they placed her on my chest she was purple and not crying. I was so out of it at this point, everything was so blurry. A nurse came, and whisked Eloise away, I only had about 5 seconds with her on my chest. The amazing nurse took Eloise and started working on her to breathe. She also cleared out all the fluid from her lungs. Then I heard my daughter cry for the first time. I cried. My mom cried. Dex, and my sisters were crying. She is healthy, she is perfect. 

She was finally placed in my arms and Dexter and I fell in love with her in that moment. It was a moment I had been anxiously waiting for, for nine months. I was in shock that she was actually here, finally. Let’s be honest, I’m still in shock two weeks later. I’ll look at her and just can’t believe Dexter and I made her. Half of me, half of her daddy. We are blessed.¬†

She weighed 6lbs 5oz, 19 3/4 inches long. Born Friday, November 30th at 7:52pm. 6 days early from her due date. She decided she wanted to be a little November baby! 

Also, a funny story: my family and I placed bets of when Eloise would be born, and I was the one who guessed it right. Mother’s intuition?! Lucky guess?! Who knows! But I thought that would be so funny and cool to tell Ellie when she’s older! I guessed her birthday.¬†¬†

Anyway, I hope you all enjoyed her birth story. These last two weeks have been overwhelming, stressful, beyond difficult, but so joyful with this perfect little human. I hope to do a one-month update, in two weeks. Dexter is an amazing father. He has been such a great partner, so supportive and loving. Eloise is so lucky to have him as her daddy. 

BIG ITEMS PURCHASED FOR BABY GIRL

There are so many baby products to choose from, it can be really overwhelming deciding what you actually need and what you can do without. I love to do research, but Dexter is for sure the researcher in our relationship. He will read endless reviews and compare products. Here are the main expensive & big purchases we decided on:

 

4MOMS MAMAROO 

My parents were kind enough to buy us this amazing rocker! I’m so excited because I knew I wanted this rocker from the moment I got pregnant. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things, my twin sister has one for her baby and she loves it. They purchased it from BUYBUYBABY and here is the¬†link if you’re interested.

 

 

NUNA PIPA LITE LX

Trying to find the perfect car seat was a challenge! At first we were dead set on the uppaBABY Mesa car seat, but after months of research we decided on the Nuna Pipa Lite LX! Not only is it beautiful, but it is the lightest car seat ever (5.7lbs)! This will really come in handy when I am by myself & have to lug the baby around. We also got to see it in person, and we love the Aspen blue color! The thing that “sold” Dexter is the true lock base installation, which is 50% stronger than the typical belt latch. We are excited to install it in the car, and see our little girl snug in it for the first time. We are getting ours from a local baby store:¬†here is the link if interested.

 

NUNA 2019 TAVO STROLLER IN ASPEN

Since we are getting the Nuna car seat, it was a no brainer to get the matching stroller! It is GORGEOUS! I absolutely love the way it looks, and how easy it is to fold & unfold.¬†(watch this video to see the stroller)¬†I’m looking forward to using it, and maybe I can make a blog post with my honest review, in 6 months or so! Here is the link¬†to the stroller.¬†But if you’re like me, and buying them TOGETHER, you can see it from¬†this link.

 

SNUGGLE ME ORGANIC IN BLOOM

I wanted to get Eloise a lounger that she could use for naps + sleeping in, but also to lay her on to relax. This snuggle me is super soft, and is made from organic fabric. It is machine washable, and hypoallergenic. There are a few other baby loungers on the market, but this one seemed to be the most comfortable for baby. I also got it on sale, which was a huge PLUS! If you are interested here is the link. I purchased the bloom color (so pretty) but also love it in Ember. I might pick up this shade after she is born, so I have a backup cover when one is dirty. My twin sister also has one for baby Adelaide & she loves it!

 

NUNA X PBK SENA AIRE PLAYARD IN BROKEN ARROW

So, technically I haven’t purchased this yet… but I definitely am going to. I think it’s important to have a travel-ready playard for when we visit family in Southern California or take weekend trips. It’s also good for her to take naps in or to play in when she’s a toddler (she can use this until she’s 3 years old). I love the color & design– it’s very clean and simple. Here is the link¬†if you’re interested.

 

These are some of the big items we have decided on! I hope this was helpful for some of you, if you’re expecting or getting ready to start trying to have a baby! I am happy with the choices we have made. Some items aren’t on here like a crib or changing table because 1) she’s not getting a crib until she’s 6 months old, she will be sleeping in a small bassinet and 2) we didn’t purchase a changing table, instead we have a changing pad on top of her dresser!

If you have some big items that I didn’t mention, I would love to know. ūüôā I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead!

 

 

 

*I do not own any of these photos, I got them from their websites

*I am not affiliated with any of these links, and do not get paid for linking these items. These are all purchased with my own money, or gifted from family.

36 WEEKS PREGNANT

I haven’t updated you on my pregnancy, since week 30. There’s been a lot of things to update you all on. I am getting so big, it’s incredible to see my body changing so much! I got my first stretch marks on my stomach *insert sad face*. There’s about 3 on my stomach, it was bound to happen though! I keep lathering oil & lotion everyday, just to keep my belly moisturized.

I officially packed my hospital bag! AHHHHH! I have the majority of it packed & ready to go, including baby’s blankets, outfits, and bows! I just need the last items thrown in there (toothbrush, toothpaste, hair brush, contact solution & contacts, etc). Packing my bag made things SO REAL. It’s insane that my due date is exactly 4 weeks away! I’m hoping she comes a little earlier though ūüėČ We are just too excited to meet her, not to mention I’m very uncomfortable!

SYMPTOMS: 

  • Insomnia– Man, this one has been killer. Sleep is¬† a luxury now! I cannot get comfortable to save my life! I’m usually up past midnight, and waking up every few hours tossing/turning. When people tell you “Oh, get all the sleep you can get before baby comes, because once baby is here… you won’t get any” Can I just vent & say that is a crock of shit?! Now that I’ve experienced pregnancy & am 36 weeks, that statement is a LIE. When you’re pregnant, you’re not sleeping peacefully! I honestly think it’s the body’s way to prepare for whats to come though. END RANT. Haha!
  • Exhaustion– This one is a no brainer! Since I’m not getting a good night’s sleep, I have ZERO energy throughout the day. Sometimes I take naps but I try not to, so when night comes I hope I’ll just knock out. Hah! It’s a horrible cycle these past few weeks!
  • Peeing all night– I’m up every hour or two, peeing. It’s like my first trimester all over again!
  • Increase in aches & pains– Pregnancy is no joke! Eloise’s head is DOWN now, and I’m pretty sure my belly has dropped because I feel a lot of pressure on my bladder! Getting out of bed is hard, tying my shoes is nearly impossible, and putting on my jeans is painful.
  • Braxton Hicks and Cramping– Sometimes I get cramps that feel like period cramps, but they don’t stay around for long periods of time. I was getting braxton hicks contractions a few weeks ago, but I haven’t felt one in awhile.
  • Nesting– I’ve been nesting for weeks! It’s not an everyday thing, but I’ll get these random bursts of energy/feeling the urge to clean and organize. I’ve washed all of her clothes and blankets, I’ve organized her dresser, and I’ve been trying to keep my own room clean! I can’t wait to install her carseat and buy her stroller (the last things I need)!

 

I have the baby’s bassinet set up, her mamaroo ready, and some diapers bought! I think I’m as “ready” as I possibly can be. My twin sister gave birth almost 3 months ago, so she’s been my go-to person to ask for advice and comfort me when I’m feeling overwhelmed or really anxious.

I can’t wait to meet this little peanut. I’m feeling so many emotions these last few weeks of being pregnant! I’m going to do my best to savor these last moments because who knows if and when I’ll ever get pregnant again! I know one day I’ll miss my pregnant belly and her kicks!

CARBON COCO NATURAL TEETH WHITENING: SWEET MINT

Hi everyone! I’m so excited because I get to share a product I’ve been using for a couple weeks now, that I love! If you haven’t read my first review for Carbon Coco-¬†READ IT HERE.¬†I’m so grateful that they were kind enough to send me their new flavor¬†SWEET MINT ACTIVATED CHARCOAL TOOTH POLISH.

After trying the sweet mint flavor, I actually now prefer it over the original, just because I love mint-flavor EVERYTHING! It’s so refreshing and¬† available for a limited time only, so pick up a few of these while you can (a little goes a long way)! After using the activated charcoal tooth polish, I then brush my teeth with the activated charcoal toothpaste, which is in spearmint flavor– yum!

I’m a huge coffee drinker, and I’ve noticed these products helped make my teeth whiter! My teeth were never horribly yellow to begin with, but they definitely weren’t as white as they are now after using the tooth polish & toothpaste!

 

Also, you may be wondering (since I am pregnant) are these products safe to use while pregnant & breastfeeding? If you take a look at their¬†FAQ PAGE¬†it is safe! These are 100% natural products, and when you’re pregnant your gums are more sensitive– so take care of your mouth! Also, for you animal lovers out there– they do NOT test on animals! That’s something I think is super important, and I’m proud to use their products!

Like I’ve mentioned before on my previous review for Carbon Coco, these do NOT make my teeth sensitive, like other teeth whitening products have before in the past. That’s probably the biggest plus about Carbon Coco! If you’re thinking about giving them a try, go to their¬†WEBSITE. The next items from their website I’d love to try is the¬†CARBON AQUA FLOSSER¬†& their¬†TONGUE CLEANER.¬†These both look amazing! I hope you all give them a try as well!

 

*c/o Carbon Coco, all thoughts and reviews are my own.

 

pumpkin patch with my little pumpkin

Last weekend we took a drive to Half Moon Bay, to visit the pumpkin patch. It was my first time here, and it was such a nice drive! I’m so glad I got to cross this off my Autumn to-do list this year. I definitely wanted some pictures with my big bump so I’m able to look back on for memories! It was a little overcast at first, but the sun eventually came out.

I’m 33 weeks pregnant here! Man, pregnancy is exhausting, and sleep is a joke! I am constantly tossing and turning, it’s so frustrating. But I guess it’s good in a way, since it’ll prepare me for those sleepless nights the first few months.

We went on a hospital tour a few days ago, and it’s just getting more real. In under 6 weeks I’ll be holding sweet E in my arms!

I can’t believe we are at the end of October! HOW?! I hope you all have a wonderful rest of the month & a HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

xo

A SWEET BABY SHOWER FOR OUR GIRL

This past weekend, we drove down to Southern California to have our baby shower with friends and family. It was in this adorable event space in Burbank, and it turned out exactly how I envisioned it! My color theme was gold, blush pink, and peach.

This whole time I’ve only mentioned our baby’s first name to close family and friends, but never announced it on social media! Well I thought posting the baby shower photos would be the perfect opportunity to announce her first name (we are keeping her FULL name secret until I give birth).

Our little girl’s name is…¬†ELOISE. Ellie or Elle for short. I am in love with her name.

My sisters did such a wonderful job helping me set up the event space! I’m so glad we got to shower sweet Eloise with love before her big arrival in a few weeks. I was 31 weeks pregnant at the baby shower, and tomorrow (Thursday) I’m turning 32 weeks! HOLY CRAP! We are like 8 weeks away from her due date.

It’s a waiting game now! My sister had her baby one day before her due date, so I’m dying to know when she will be here! Will she be early, and be born at the end of November? Or will she be born past her due date? I’m so anxious! Regardless, she’ll be here in 1 month and give or take 25 days. I still have to do so much: buy a carseat, wash her little baby clothes, organize her dresser, put together her bassinet, etc. I’m in full-blown nesting mode now.

 

I was also thrilled to see my niece again! I hadn’t seen her since she was one week old, and she’s almost two months old now! It’s always hard to say goodbye, but knowing I’ll see my family in under two months again, makes me super happy! And this time… it’ll be with Eloise! We are all so excited for her arrival.

 

xo