Labor & Delivery

5 Amazing Items for your Hospital Bag to Make the Stay Comfortable.

If you are a first time mom then you are going to experience so many firsts, and it’s such a huge part of your life I can almost guarantee one thing will skip your mind, the hospital stay itself.

If you are a bit more seasoned momma then you know that the hospital stay has some discomforts that are more than actually bringing your baby into the world.

Body Pillow

You probably have heard that it is nice to have a comfy pillow from home, but it’s more than a homesick comfort item.

I dreaded the hospital bed. The one in delivery was horrible and made my bum fall asleep and if you had an epidural (I still felt this annoying pain) or if your water broke, and you’re not moving around as much, then you doing whatever you can to get some relief for your tail bone.

I would place the body pillow behind me folded up and sit on the 2 or 3 hospital pillows. This honestly made the stay so much more comfortable each time, bonus is that it gives your arm a nice prop when feeding baby.

Water Bottle

Most hospitals will give you a cup with a straw and its a nice size and all, but having one that doesn’t have the “hospital smell” is even better.

Not only that (and maybe I’m just weird) but trying to navigate a straw to drink in between pokes, prods, and some times pushing was adding an annoyance that could have been avoided.

Easy solution is go with what you know. If you work out or just drink water on a regular basis then use what you would in the same situation. I mean this is one of the biggest “work outs” of your life (see what I did there?).

Small Fan

This is one that I don’t see on most lists but it is my swear by.

After you have your baby, no matter how you had them, you have a large fluid shift and when you have that fluid shift it has to go somewhere…

You will be using the bathroom a lot, and you will sweat even more.

A personal fan like the one you would put on a work desk helped with this wonders, yes they keep the hospital on the cooler end but it still only helped so much…also a breeze is well welcomed when you can see out side but can’t be outside just yet.

Phone Charger

I know this one seems like something you wouldn’t forget but I have and my hubby has all of the brand new baby photos that I wish I had right away. Not only that but labor doesn’t always go to plan and let’s face it phone are everything. Pictures, entertainment while waiting for an induction to get things rolling, music to play while you are rolling on a ball and so much more. You’ll want your phone, so buy and pack up the extra charger.

Granny Panties

Need I really explain this one? Nothing tight but they feel better than fishnet undies and hold the mega pads in place a bit better.

Life Blog

Back to School

So it is the beginning of August which would mean getting school supplies, meeting teachers, and getting the kids back into the swing of waking up and going to bed earlier.

This year is a tad bit different

School supplies are still including a lot of the usual but a bit more being that this year will be at home (all distractions included) and the teacher will be wanting a glass of wine by noon.

Photo by August de Richelieu on Pexels.com

I am seeing the their are growing options for school this year, in my state (if you go through public school) you can have the kids in school 2 days out of the week or going the virtual route. As you probably guessed from above, decided that going virtual was the right choice for us.

If any other parents are in the same boat and are thinking with dripping sarcasm “Well this is going to be swell!” I hear you and trying to look at this with silver lining like I get to spend more time with my babies and enrich their lives in way that I wouldn’t have been able to otherwise.

The hard part now is all of the little extras that I didn’t really have to think about before. Like headphones so that they can hear their teachers and not each other, an actually space in my house that has limited distractions, note pads and pencils, and a slew of websites showing me why the hell this new math is a thing and why haven’t we all just accepted that calculators take a fraction of the time (Don’t get me wrong I know WHY we need to know how to do math, but it feels like the way it is being taught now is not only harder but takes twice the time of when I learned it in school.)

As I become a teaching assistant for a 1st, 3rd, and 6th grader full time while also trying to juggle a toddler and infant I can see my blog becoming a “How Not to Lose Your Mind” type of deal.

We all got this and will continue to grow and thrive with our ever changing world.

Mom to Mom

Natural Help for a child with ADHD

ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) can drive even the most patient parent up a wall, but it doesn’t have to.

My 7-year-old has taught me the beauty of deep breathing and counting to 10 on more than one occasion and in retrospect, I wouldn’t have him any other way. When he was younger his doctor told me about a range of medications to help him and I decided I would consider medication later down the line. I would like to put in here quickly that I have no problem with medications if you or your child needs them, you have to make the best choice for your family and I fully support. I also have ADHD and was treated at different times with Concerta and Adderall, both causing me to do better in school but came with side effects that I don’t want him to experience if he doesn’t have to.

Sports

A large thing that has helped my son is playing a highly active sport such as soccer this has been altered these days due to social distancing but a game of tag with his siblings seems to work just as well. There are countless other benefits of sports a large one being the release of cortisol ( the stress hormone that can only be released via tears or sweat) on a day that may be on the stressful side for him.

High Energy Pet

You may have read my Best Dogs for Kids post and saw that I own a wonderful husky, while the breed didn’t make that particular list… They are GREAT pets for someone who is high energy because they can keep up and some time out- do their loved ones. We also have a Savannah kitten who can play for hours and keeps my son entertained. (because he is cute so darn cute) 

Keeping a Routine

One trick that I have noticed works for not only my son but for myself and other people I have spoken to that have ADHD is that a routine is optimal. Knowing what to expect and when just kind of makes transitioning from one task to the next easier to manage and keeping it at certain times only boosts it. A routine helps us kind of go into an “auto-pilot” on some tasks that we would usually get distracted from.

Use Colors

Here’s something else that I used once I hit my teens and use with my son to help him with memory in school. Associate learning materials with colors or do equations in bright colors, it seems like it would be more of a distraction but it helps focus on the material in front of you by keeping it more entertaining.

Examples of this are that I personally will do my drafts and highlight different portions in different colors. For my son we do math problems in his favorite colors.

Those are the tricks that I use to help curb my ADHD as well as for my son, of course always talk with your doctor and come up with a plan that works for you and your family.

Cheers

Mom to Mom

Mom 2 Mom Series

This month I am launching my Mom to Mom series which is taking questions asked by moms and answered by either myself or mom that have the experience to answer the questions submitted.

I would like to add that this will be more like girlfriends talking together over a glass of wine (or tequila if that’s your thing). Whatever may be written is nothing more than personal experiences and outcome and in no way replicate or replace someone such as a counselor. Here’s to moms helping moms.

Cheers!

Review

“Konny” ready wrap Baby Carrier.

In the midst of having my last baby I had learned about “baby wearing”.

Baby wearing is more or less the practice of constantly having your baby doing skin to skin or “wearing” them with a bay carrier for the first three months after delivery to kind of help baby adjust to the outside world (I’m almost 30 and still not adjusted but hey if those extra 3 months attached to me or my hubby helps them feel more comfy just means all the more cuddles).

So this brings us to the quest of which carrier is best for the baby? Which is best for me? Which can withstand longer periods of time? And in my case, due to bubs being born in March, which one will do well and not overheat my lil guy in the warmer months?

I had narrowed down ultimately two carriers and the first one was the “Konny Summer” (we’ll get to the second in another post)

After a few hours (days) of research I had found my first baby carrier to try my baby wearing experience.

The Ready To Wear Wrap

To my current knowledge there are a TON of baby wraps that are a solid very long article of fabric that you can wrap and morph into a saftey caccoon for you and your baby.

This scares the shit out of me.

I had one with an older child of mine and I could never wrap it quite right with out help and the whole time I used it I felt afraid she was slipping out. So naturally when I saw the ready to wear wrap I was over the moon, because it honestly was quite easy to use.

The wrap I had bought was the “Konny Summer” and it is as easy to put on as a tee shirt (in fact that might be one of their selling points, but im not here to sell, just to give my humble opinion). Another thing that I liked about it was the fact it definitely ran cool due to the construction of a large mesh. Lastly I love that I can transition to toddler mode if need be due to the fabric being able to hold up to 20 Kg or 44 lbs. So high point of this baby product was the fact that it would keep bubs cool, for a few years at that, along with being as hassle free as you can be.

With that said the carrier did have a few down sides which did ultimately have me get a second carrier.

The first issue I had is that you order this product to size, there is a saftey strap/ tie around band but THAT IS THE ONLY ADJUSTMENT. This is very well is a Me problem, the product is made in Korea and while that itself is not an issue (c’mon I’m a mutt married to a Lao- Brit I’m the last person to be judgy on where someone is from) I am not from a country that has the same thin giving eating habits, not to mention that my chest likes to play an interesting size change game the duration of breast feeding so I can go between a Large and an XXL easily with my chest alone. So some days I felt like I was sqeezing bubs to much (he slept the whole time so I guess he didn’t mind) while other times I felt like he could slide out. This is what led me to letting my hubs use this wrap and me switching to a different carrier for myself.

Secondly is a slight design issue that could be my personal paranoia, the wrap has a cross or “X” that goes across baby’s back, while I don’t see how else this could be made better ( I’m a writer not engineer) I felt it was easy for my son to throw himself backward and the security band not being tight enough (the material is a smooth and slick feeling polyester and spandex combo that feels like a 90’s sports jersey) to stop him from tumbling outward.

In essence it’s a nice product that I would enjoy if my body was a bit smaller and predictable and if there was maybe a more wrap design that had one one permanent layer over the “X” shape. If traditional wraps are a pain and traditional carriers are cumbersome, then with keeping safety in mind at all times, this could be a great baby wrap for you.

Cheers.

Uncategorized

Covid-19 & MIS-C

Today worldwide there have been more than 5 million cases of Covid-19. That is a lot. To add insult to injury there is now a illness affecting children called MIS-C that is making little ones sick and is potentially more fatal to them than Covid-19 itself.  I don’t want to have too lengthy a post about this because it has been the topic of the world for what feels like forever some days.

 Signs of COVID-19 in children are generally mild and may even mimic a cold for some children. Now that is not to say that children can’t or won’t get more critically ill but these are most common:

  • Fever
  • Runny nose
  • Cough
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

As said before, children generally recover from COVID-19, However there is now an illness that seems to “follow-up” mostly after a child has been infected with Covid. This illness is called multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children or MIS-C for short.  MIS-C appears to develop two to six weeks after infection with Covid-19 or exposure to Covid and affects children mostly from ages 2-21. Complications from MIS-C can include organ damage including heart damage that is irreversible.

Symptoms of MIS-C include the following (remember not all children would have the same symptoms):

  • Fever
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Neck pain
  • Rash
  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Feeling extra tired

 Now I have never and will never use my writing to invoke fear because first off, the media is doing that already and secondly, it’s a crap thing to do. I will however use my writing to help anyone I can by informing them, If I can help even one person with this blog I will be thankful.

Stay safe friends and remember that like many pandemics before this one it will end.

Cheers

Uncategorized

Potty Training 101

Watching your child grow is full of bitter sweetness. There are moments that you will miss along with moments that you might not miss so much. Big example of one you may not miss so much is blow out diapers (in all their stinky glory). Potty training is a monumental milestone and once achieved one that gives your nose along with your wallet a well-deserved break, that is at least until those teenage years.

“How will I know when my toddler is ready for potty training?”

Well a few hints to know when the right time is including:

  • Your child being able to walk efficiently (seems to be a no-brainer but we’ll get to why I say that in a moment).
  • Having the ability to hold their urine for at least two hours.
  • Have solid bowel movements consistently.
  • Has the ability to pull his/her pants up and down on their own.
  • Possesses the ability to sit undistracted for a few moments.
  • Have the ability to express that they need to use the restroom prior to doing so.

While ever single child is unique and will learn at their own pace there are a couple of key points to keep in mind such as the gender of your child. Typically boys will learn how to use the potty quicker than girls, but girls seem to show a need for independence earlier than boys and will learn at a younger age. Also boys seem to become distracted easier than girls (in my experience my sons rather play in the sink than actually sit on the potty)

One thing that does stay relatively the same is how to go about getting your little miss or sir to use a potty. The first thing I learned was to go for a simple toilet. With my oldest child I bought an expensive potty chair that would sing and play music whenever it sensed “she went potty” this turned into sheer horror and she refused to get near ANY and ALL potty chairs for months. Ultimately with her I had gotten one of those seats that you can place onto a normal adult toilet but this led to me having to go into the bathroom every time she had to go and then making the choice of carting a mini toilet seat every where or taking the chance that she may not sit on “the big potty” and take steps backward in our training journey.

The next tip I have is a very simple one and one we use everyday as parents, a ton of praise when he or she does go to the bathroom in the right area. It’s beyond simple but if five babies have taught me anything it’s that a little praise goes a very long way.

This brings me to my third tip (That I’ve only had to use once), just let baby go around in the buff. I kid you not my second child became potty trained because he had no diaper on and peed a little on himself and disliked that so much that from that day on he used his potty chair ( I wish they were all that easy).

There is way more tricks and tips you can find but I have found those to be my top ones.

Good luck to all mommies going through this milestone and may the porcelain gods be with you.

Cheers

Nursing

Back to Work Bottles for the Breastfeeding Mamma (Pt 1.)

I’ve done it time and time again but going back to work sucks. I had all this time with my little monsters seeing them day in and day out, not to mention having the Newbies skin to skin cuddles and (of course or else this post wouldn’t exist) being able to breastfeed on demand. It’s a special bonding moment that really doesn’t feel like it can be replaced, and after a difficult road of a crappy latch for his first 4 weeks (swear my nipples looked like they had the same crater look to them at the moon) I am not ready to give that up.

After who knows how many hours looking at bottles and reviews and “what to look for in a bottle” This is one I had finally decided on.

The first bottle being the “Lansinoh Momma” bottle which boasts to have a nipple for the most natural latch. This was an instant try it out in my book, I said before Newbie had a horrible latch and I didn’t want anything to change it now that we got it down well. The company is also a breast pump manufacturing company so I figured they would know a thing or two. The nipple is very flexible and has a good shape also it is a more gentle slope than most standard bottle so my son didn’t seem to have much of a problem getting used to the feel of this bottle. There is also a hole on the top of the nipple for ventilation to avoid colic (which I mean we all have to appreciate right?)

The only real con I am finding with this particular bottle is that I do wish there was a slower nipple flow. The flow is a bit slower than a standard bottle but the issue at hand is that he might get lazy on me and decide to prefer the bottle and getting his food quicker than working for it from me. Here’s to keeping the breastfeeding relationship alive for a bit longer at least.

Cheers

If you had to go between bottle and breast definitely leave a comment below

Labor & Delivery

Maternity ward during the Covid19 pandemic.

It was different giving birth during the pandemic than any other one of my pregnancies.

  • No visitors were allowed.
  • Only one support person was allowed to be with me and was not able to leave and come back .( my husband who still slept through a good part of the process so that stayed the same)
  • The whole staff wore masks, the whole time,which gave (me, the person who watches way too many horror movies) an unbelievable eerie vibe.
  • No newborn pictures came (I actually preferred this because newborns look like aliens and one less person to bug the little milk monster I just got off my sore boobs)

It was go time, after a very high risk pregnancy with bubs my OB decided it was time to pull the plug and get an induction going at 39 weeks 1 day. Now this was heartbreaking for me because this was my last baby and I knew for the safety of myself and others that no one would get to meet him (and still haven’t for that matter.) There would be no flowers, no balloons, no smiles from friends and loved ones that have supported me through this tough pregnancy.

I was however lucky enough to be in a state that would allow me to have one support person permitted that they stay the duration of the time I was a patient. My lovely husband Luke stayed true to his job of sleeping through the boring parts and this time actively waking up when my epidural wore off and I was pushing (He was awake for the last baby I swear). Husband holding my thigh and laying, there with about 7 blue masked faces staring down at me, and having a rushing thought of “If aliens are real I’m sure this is what their victims see directly before being probed.”

My little fat man made his way into the world after 3 pushes and was placed on my chest which gave me the feeling of familiarity and amazing emotions that I’ve felt before putting everything at ease… and then he peed on me.

Uncategorized

Something Beautiful during a challenging time.

In the midst of dealing with social distancing, being isolated from family that I would see at least once a week, trying to figure out what the hell is up with this “new- not so new math” and what is going on with the “do not enter” stickers on the store floors… I had my last baby.

Yep had a baby just like so many other strong woman that I know are doing the same during this scary time. I feel for these women because even though I did the same thing there are women who are having their first child and can’t have their mom’s there or even in some areas are forced to give birth alone. no spouse. no support person (except a nurse). Just them and the doctors trying to do something they’ve never done before.

And that experience and view of strength led me to here.

Seeing other women endure sharing the memory of one of the happiest and scariest moments of their lives with the constrictions of a monster like virus, showed me to work through my fears of wanting to write a blog and hopefully help women in all stages of motherhood feel less alone during these times and feel a part of a village in happier times.

Here’s to being a mommy, mom, mother, mum, mama or mumzie in all fashions.

cheers.