Wednesday, January 28, 2015

From the trenches

Do you ever have days where you think (or cry) to yourself, "I am not cut out for this job!"...? If you're a mom, likely yes. It seems I cry that outloud nearly everyday. 

"This is a hard job, the hardest you'll ever have." ... "But the most rewarding." so they say. 
From the trenches, dinosaur chicken nuggets and pigs in a blanket make a perfectly acceptable dinner. (don't worry, we sliced up a banana for the big guy)

From the trenches, you let them pick out any toy because your mommy guilt is so bad.

From the trenches, photo collages like this are what you LIVE for right now!

From the trenches, you get this in your kid's backpack at the end of a stressful day and somehow all the stress vanishes. Kinda. ;)

From the trenches, you give chocolate milk and cake pops on your mommy/Jakey dates because. Just because.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Postpartum Favorites

I feel like a seasoned vet this time around. Healing and dealing came pretty easy for me this time around, which I cannot say happened with Jacob! Here's a quick round-up of my favorite postpartum items.
postpartum favorites
Squirt Bottle  I know this is totally TMI, but you will absolutely L O V E  this thing at the hospital, and when you come home. I honestly used it for the first 3 months with Jacob. I didn't use it quite as long this time around, mostly because I didn't have time to keep refilling it.

Tucks Pads  Another TMI, but these really help cool and comfort your lady bits. I also had pretty bad hemorrhoids with Jacob and these were great!

Always Infinity Pads  I tried a TON of different pads and I think these are the best! They are thin so you don't feel like you're wearing a diaper, but really absorbent so you don't have to change them every few hours. You will have pretty heavy bleeding for at least 2 weeks, and it slowly tappers off. I'm still wearing panty liners daily.

NUK Overnight Nursing Pads  Another item I've shopped and tried. These are the best I found. They are really absorbent, soft, and they are NOT individually packaged (which is such a silly thing to think about, but it's a total pain in the butt to unwrap these, especially when you use 4/day)!

Mason Jar  I like to have a large plastic mason jar around with water at all times. I used to use my camelbak, but I think this is more convenient and you don't have to fill it up every 10 minutes.

Heating Pad  My back is constantly aching at the beginning, so a heating pad is really nice to have. I think it's from holding 10lbs. for long periods of time, my body just isn't used to it! I lay on this every night before bed.

Nursing Camis  I have said this over and over on all my "favorites" lists, but these really are the best! Super soft, easy to use and cheap! I purchased a few more because I really do wear these every single day.

Baby Feed App  I love this app. I used it the entire time I breastfed Jacob (over a year!) and am now using it with Judd. You can set it to alert you every 2 or 3 hours (or however long you want) and it reminds you what breast you ended on last feed, etc. It also has the capability to track diaper changes, naps, etc. I haven't really used those functions though, I tend to have more trouble remembering what time I last fed the baby vs. when he last napped.

Chapstick  This Advocare chapstick is hands down my favorite. It's yummy flavored, sticks around for awhile and doesn't tingle or sting (which I can't stand in winter).

Something I didn't include on this is a nursing bra. I still haven't found a nursing bra that I love. I bought this one this time around and it's just ok. I guess for the price, it's good, but I still wouldn't recommend it. It's hard to re-clasp, the center piece of fabric (between the breasts) sticks out awkwardly so you can see it through your shirts, it makes my boobs look pointy and it's kinda hard to pull it back up from under you boobs. The bra I bought with Jacob isn't available anymore, but it was another Gilligan O'Malley from Target. Something tells me I need to bite the bullet and go to Motherhood for a nice quality bra.

Anyways, there's my top postpartum favorites! Y'all have anything else you love??

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

From the trenches

I want to start a weekly-ish series called "From the trenches" to document this  c r a z y  time in our lives. I hear it time and time again that we'll eventually miss these days, and while I'd like to believe all those people, something tells me I won't. Ha!

I'm going to highlight some of the craziest/funniest/ridiculous things that happen around here because I think in 20 years, that's what I'll want to laugh about. 

So here we go.

From the trenches, this is a perfectly acceptable morning/breakfast. 

From the trenches, this is what we do when it's too cold to play outside. 

From the trenches, your husband sends you text pictures like this and you leap for joy! First bottle!

From the trenches, you wear your baby while sitting down because your arms and back hurt so bad from holding him allllll day. 

From the trenches, this is how we do dinner. Donald Duck is totally invited. (and mom and dad finished 20 minutes ago because we don't know how to eat at a normal pace)

From the trenches, it's perfectly normal to find us in our PJs swinging in the backyard in the middle of the afternoon. 

But look at that smile. 

Monday, January 19, 2015

Heart racing-ly cute valentines

See what I did there?? Is racing-ly even a word??

Since Jacob is in school this year and I have  z e r o  free time, I needed a cute and easy valentine idea for all his classmates. I also wanted to go with something that Jacob enjoys, because they are from him after all- right?? ;)

Look how cute these turned out! And let me tell you-  e a s y, e a s y, e a s y!!

valentine for boys

I threw together the printable in Photoshop real quick, printed them, cut them, glued them to construction paper, bought 84¢ Hot Wheels from Target, glued the cars to the paper and TA DA! So simple.

you make my heart race
The hardest part was keeping Jacob from ripping all the cars off the paper before the month of February!

Soo...whatcha think? Do they get your heart racing? ;)

Friday, January 16, 2015

Quinoa & chicken skillet

This recipe has been floating around Pinterest lately and it fits my no dairy or spicy food diet criteria, so I made it! I changed the original recipe a bit to add chicken and more flavor.

Quinoa & chicken skillet
1 tbsp. EVOO
1 tbsp. minced garlic
Chicken (I used pre-cooked fajita chicken)
1 can black beans
1 can corn
1 can rotel
1 cup quinoa (uncooked)
1 cup vegetable broth

1) Put EVOO and garlic in large skillet on medium heat and sautée for a minute or two. 
2) Add cooked chicken to skillet for a few minutes to brown. 
3) Add all remaining ingredients. Bring to boil. 
4) Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes (or until quinoa is cooked).

I ate this over a bed of lettuce with a bit of salsa on top. My husband and son ate it with cheese on top. Both ways are delicious and I can't believe my husband, the world's pickiest eater, likes this! Add it to the weekly rotation! :)

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Breastfeeding - excess lipase

excess lipase

When I first started introducing the bottle to Jacob, over two years ago, he strongly resisted it. I tried different types of bottles and had people besides me attempt to feed him, but he just wouldn't take it!

Finally one day it dawned on me to try the milk myself. I followed all the breastmilk storage guidelines, but ya never know! Low and behold, my milk had spoiled after less than 24 hours in the fridge. 

I started doing lots of research on what could cause this and eventually settled on the fact that my breastmilk had excess lipase, which is the enzyme that breaks down fat. So basically my milk was breaking down way faster than most people's, causing it to turn really quickly (like within a few hours).

In order to stop this process you have to inactivate the lipase, which is done by scalding the freshly expressed milk on the stove. 

Sound like a big pain in the a$$? It is. But if it allows  Y O U  to get out of the house for a little bit, you do it. 

So here's the deets...

After you pump, put a small pot on the stove on high heat and pour your pumped milk in there.
excess lipase

In the meantime, you can throw all your pumping stuff in the sink with hot water and soap.

Once you see bubbles around the edge, remove the pot from the heat and turn the heat off. You just want to scald the milk, not actually bring it to a boil.

After that, use a funnel to pour the scalded milk back into the storage container and immediately put it in the fridge. You need to cool down the milk immediately, even if you plan on serving it later. 

excess lipase
That's it!  From there you can use the typical guidelines for serving, storing and freezing.

I hope this helps someone, as it has really been a lifesaver for me! I've started pumping when Judd goes down for his morning nap to start a little stash! So excited to actually be able to bottle feed this time around!

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Judson - 1 month

Somehow we survived the last month and I can't help but marvel at how quickly it went! Some days were longer and harder than others, but it was definitely easier than the first month with Jacob!

Judd started Zantac for reflux at around 2.5 weeks and I haven't noticed as drastic of an improvement as I did with Jacob. Praying that he gets relief soon or that we can switch to Prevacid at his next appointment.

Judd's weekly appointments this first month were all messed up because he got sick at around 10 days old and then we went in at 2.5 weeks for his reflux, so his 2-week appointment was actually on Monday, 2 days before he was technically 4 weeks old, and his 1 month appointment isn't until he's 6 weeks. But oh well! 

Age: 1 month

Height: 22.6" (on Monday)

Weight: 10lbs. (on Monday)

Nicknames: Judd, JudderBug
Milestones: In terms of head control, he can hold his head up for a few seconds and move it side to side while being held upright, and can lift it a little bit off the floor during tummy time. Within the past few days I've noticed him batting for toys on his playmat and tracking things/people more. I can tell he recognizes my voice and will even move his head around to "look" for my voice. He's also starting to "coo" which is just the sweetest little thing, and I think we're real close to a smile!

Sleep: For the first 2 weeks, Judd co-slept with me because he just couldn't stand to be away from me. At about 2 weeks we moved him into the rock & play beside our bed, and that's where he is currently. At night he gives us a good 4 hour stretch at the beginning (~9:30-2) and then wakes to eat every 2-3 hours, so we're usually up 2x each night. During the day he sleeps best in my arms, but that obviously isn't doable when it's just me here. So I just started a schedule and have been putting him down for naps in the rock & play in our room, will update next month on how that's going since it's literally been 2 days. Overall though, Judd is a much more active and noisy sleeper compared to Jacob. Lots of grunting, whining and sometimes crying in his sleep, so we're getting used to distinguishing between real cries and sleep cries, but I'd have to say he's a better sleeper than Jacob too. 

Eating: He's eating every 2-3 hours during the day and anywhere from 2-4 hours at night. Seems like he just recently went through a growth spurt because he was eating every 1.5 hours there for 1-2 days. Exhausting for a breastfeeding mama!

Clothes size: moving into 0-3 month 

Diaper size: size 1
Teeth: none 

Favorite toy: I guess his playmat at this point? He also loves staring at all the pictures on our wall and the ceiling fan.

Likes: his mama!, diaper changes (unless he's too cold), nursing and bath time

Dislikes: being cold or being touched by cold hands, being put down when held, dirty diapers and when he has to burp

Personality: Kinda hard to tell at this point, but I definitely think he's gonna be my mama's boy.

Best moment: Judd had a big first month! Between Christmas and New Years, he's celebrated two months and two years already!

Worst moment: Around 1.5 weeks, Judd got his first cold. Big brother brought it home from school and infected little brother. Judd had a runny nose and congestion and it broke my heart! We had to do saline + suction several times a day to get all the mucus out and he was still pretty miserable. But he never spiked a fever and we never had to take him to the ER, although there was a night I was worried about his breathing and called our pediatrician after hours. I'm already so sick of flu/cold season, and looking forward to spring time and Judd getting his 2-month shots to help protect him!

Looking forward to: getting more sleep and starting to establish a routine/schedule, and spring time!

How is Jacob adjusting?: he's doing better than expected- he never gets mad at Judd, but I can tell he's acting out (throwing things, acting wild, dumping all his toys out) to get attention, which I really can't blame him. Josh and I try to make a point to sit and play with him when we're off baby duty.

A few more pictures from our photo shoot today...

Here's some random pictures from the first month...

first Christmas, someone had fun!

meeting cousin Autumn for the first time

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Judson's Newborn Pictures

I am so so excited to share these with you! We took these when Judd was only FIVE DAYS OLD! He did as good as to be expected, and Jacob was a total h-a-m the entire time.
Love these pictures of our complete family!

Photos by Heather C. King

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Jacob Says

Kate: "Where'd all your cereal go?"
Jacob: "It's in my butt."

Jacob: "Daddy, help me out!"
Jacob (to Josh): "What you doing, my son?"

Jacob: "Where's my baby bruddddderr?"