All the Baby Stuff…

… you don’t need. Living in a small condo has really helped me simplify and do without. I’m not a huge “stuff” person anyway, so it’s been relatively easy… but still a learning curve, especially with a baby. I had a hard time figuring out what I needed to register for and what I didn’t… I thought I’d help any others in a similar situation out.

So here’s what you DON’TΒ need, at least for awhile:

A Crib

A nursery

A changing table (changing pads on the bed or floor works well)

A high chair (we bought a simple, inexpensive one after six months when he started solids… if you have a table (we use a coffee table that lifts up) you can use a booster seat thing on one of your chairs.)

A swing

A bouncy seat

A bumbo

A baby bath tub (if you have a sink or a tub… we co-bathe or wash in the sink. Now that he can sit, he sometimes takes shallow baths in the tub “alone”. We did get one, but he ended up hating it. I wish we hadn’t registered for it.)

A baby monitor (He sleeps in the same room as we do, obviously, and the house is so small he’s hardly away from me… just a couple steps to go check on him.)

A noise machine (there are many noise apps, some free! We use Sleep Pillow)

A nursing cover (nurse uncovered (two shirt method works well for most women) or use a blanket/burp cloth to cover your breast. Noah hates covers as do a lot of babies.)

A diaper pail (use a wet bag instead)

Baby lotion (I have never used any lotion on Noah… just coconut oil occasionally. I just don’t bathe him too frequently and use very little, very natural soap)

Diaper cream (coconut oil again. Also cloth diapers.)

Baby powder (unnecessary and some of them are dangerous)

Formula

Pacifiers (but then if you want to use them, they’re pretty small.)

Baby dishes (we do baby led weaning, so he just smashes stuff on his high chair tray for now)

Baby hamper (we just wash all of our clothes in a hypoallergenic, dye free, natural-ish detergent so no need to separate clothes)

Diaper bag (we use Pete’s school back pack)

Swaddler thingies. Blankets work just fine for most babies. Also some babies hate being swaddled, like mine. Ahem. If yours loves it, you may want to invest in some.

Baby shoes. Until they’re like 6 months or older. They fit them for like a day before that. Plus it can be bad for their growth if the shoes are at all restrictive/hard.

Any gagety things

Cart cover

Hand mitt thingies. They use their hands/arms in nursing and to regulate temperature… so covering them can be an issue. Also if they do scratch themselves, it heals very quickly.

What you DO need, in my opinion/experience:


A baby carrier or two! Preferably one wrap type carrier and one soft structured carrier.


Diapers (we did disposable for the first couple months and then switched to cloth (Soft Bums for the win!) with cloth wipes. It’s actually not bad, especially when exclusively breastfeeding.)


Some baby clothes, but keep in mind they grow SO FAST so you only need like maybe 10-20 outfits per size. At least if you do laundry frequently.


Changing pads. The soft ones that fold up small.


Carseat. (duh) Read up on carseat safety! It’s fairly simple… but so important and so easy to get wrong.


Books (I love Usborne and so does Noah. I am a consultant if you’re interested. :))


Some toys, don’t go crazy… they don’t need much. Think toys that can be used for years. (Sophie really does live up to the hype, btw)


Those expensive big muslin blankets. Seriously, we used them a lot more than I imagined. As play mats, backgrounds, nursing cover, for comfort/warmth, etc.


Bibs. a couple soft ones for drool and a couple rubber ones for food.


Hooded baby towels, ’cause cute. But you don’t NEED them, technically. Babies can use adult towels just fine. Same for baby washcloths.


A pack and play (didn’t bother using it at all till after 3 months because we bedshare and newborns don’t do the sleeping alone thing too well), but after that we started doing some naps in it… and from around 5 months or so he starts the night in there.


A rock and play (one of the only places besides your arms newborns will be content for longer than 1 second)

The Wonder Weeks app (very helpful for understanding the developmental stages of your baby!! Big sanity saver.)

Sound machine app

Burp cloths (could use rags or wash clothes or prefolds)

A couple hats

Socks and/or footed pjs, though keep in mind that baby’s feet are naturally cold. Use the core temp (chest/belly) to determine layers, not feet or hands. If the belly is warm they’re fine. Also, keep in mind that being too warm is more dangerous than too cold for them. If they are held, skin to skin especially, it will help keep their temp just right. 😊

Nose frida/snot sucker (sounds gross but seriously, you will do many more worse things in your mom carrier. That thing works well and really isn’t as bad as it sounds.)


Stroller… I didn’t use it till he could sit up, personally, and I still carry him a lot. But strollers are handy for all the stuff you don’t want to carry. And sometimes it’s nice to put baby in there.

Nail clippers or scissors, though I just tore or bit his nails the first several months.

Tooth brush (we just use water for now)

………

That’s not an exhaustive list, but it covers a lot of the non essentials and essentials. A lot of that you can get second hand, and people also often are willing to chip in for bigger things. Having a baby isn’t as expensive or as cluttery as “they” say!!

Feel free to comment with your experience/items for either list!

Staying at Home

What’s it like to be a stay at home mom of one baby?

It’s lying in bed with your sleeping baby latched on; staying there because you know he needs you right now, even though other things are calling to you.

It’s laughing with your baby while you read a book with a sore back because of all the hunching over and lifting you do.

It’s anxious, fearful moments because you’re alone with your thoughts, your phone, and a helpless, non verbal baby.

It’s constant stopping and starting; never ending interruptions on the same tasks over and over.

It’s your heart bursting inside you with the overwhelming sweetness and brilliance of your baby.

It’s wondering what your life purpose is; feeling like you’re not doing anything worthwhile even though in the back of your mind you know there’s nothing better you could do.

It’s walks outside, enjoying the sort of fresh air, trying to push the overwhelming thoughts aside and just live… it’s so easy for babies, but not for mommies.

It’s being amazed at the fact that your baby is doing super basic things–but it’s so wonderful to you because you grew this person and they’re doing the things!!

It’s trying to eat. A constant battle, because you want to eat healthy but every time you actually try to cook/prepare something, either baby needs you before you’re able to do it, or baby needs you before you can eat it. So you end up not eating enough, and/or eating junk.

It’s the nap time dilemma–do I have time to shower? Should I eat? Maybe do a project? Just sit and veg? Clean? Read? So many things to do, so little time!! Nevermind, he woke up. (Or, I miss my baby….. wait why is he still sleeping?? Is he dead?? No, not dead, but now I just wasted a whole hour (or two) I could have showered! I could have made real food! I could have cleaned the bathroom! I could have painted!! Wrote a book!!! Ahhh!)

It’s trying to come up with activities for your baby but not having ideas.

It’s feeling like you’re not doing enough, like you should be doing more stimulation or something.

It’s being afraid to love them so much because what if something happens to them?

It’s being frustrated because you can’t seem to get anything done, but yet you can’t possibly imagine not having this sweet squishy mischievous little one in your life.

It’s praying and hoping that they’ll make a difference in this world, and then wondering if there even will be a world worth growing up into.

It’s being so lonely and anxious that you continually go to social media to distract yourself and feel connected, only to read something that makes you more anxious or feel less connected. But it’s hard to find another option so you keep repeating the same dumb cycle and feeling like you’re such a mess.

It’s going way too many days without a shower, but your baby sure is clean.

It’s precious moments of gazing into your giggling baby’s eyes, or watching them sleep and feeling like you can’t bear the cuteness.

It’s the wonder of watching them learn and explore.

It’s the frustration of them pulling everything within reach on the floor and chewing on it.

It’s never being off the clock; 24/7, you’re on call. Thankfully my husband shares in the load quite a bit, so it’s way better than it could be. But I still feel that constant “on”.

It’s feeling like your failing but being unsure of how to do better or what to change… having bursts of inspiration that are squelched by either your own tiredness and anxiety or just your baby’s constant neediness.

It’s beautiful, challenging, worthwhile, anxiety-inducing, thought-provoking, exhausting, hilarious, and so sweet.

I’m so thankful for this opportunity, and still working to figure out how to better manage my thoughts, emotions and time. It’s challenging, but it strange ways. In some ways it’s extremely simple–keep myself and the baby alive and relatively happy and healthy. But the mental/emotional side is much more complex, especially in our day.

So… I’m writing this in a dark room with my baby sleeping on me surrounded by boxes and thoughts. I’m wondering what’s going to happen after this–will he stay asleep if I put him in his bed? I can’t keep working on the boxes because it might wake him up. (One bedroom) What else can I do? I’m hungry. Again. Ugh. Better eat. And pee, that’s important. I need a shower but that’s tempting fate; besides I want to finish planning the menu and paint and shop for Christmas and I should do dishes……

Nap time dilemma strikes again.

I’m gonna try putting him down and see what happens. 😬

P.s. Isn’t he darling though??!

One Year Ago Today…


This happened. We were suspecting it for a few days, but we waited until we were sure the test would show positive if I really was. Even before I tested, I was noticing a heightened sense of smell. I also noticed a heat flash or two. So, after church, we went to Walmart and picked up a test, among other things, before we headed back. (Peter and papa were working on something at church) If I remember correctly, we didn’t have a church key at the time, so we had to wait outside until my dad came. Which seemed like a very long time to me. 😜 Fortunately he had a key, and I went to take it, rather nervous/excited/curious.

The results showed up almost instantly, which surprised me. I waited the full two minutes to be sure that was really what it was saying, and I was a very odd mix of emotions. Happy, scared, curious… Even though I was pretty sure I was going to have a baby, and even though I had wanted this for a long time, it was quite an overwhelming realization when I knew for sure. I realized my life was going to change drastically (again, I had only been married about two months) and that no matter how this went, I would be forever changed. Which was both thrilling and disturbing. Anyway. I whispered a prayer of amazement and thanks, and went to go tell my husband. He was watching my face as I walked toward him, and he said later that he wasn’t sure how to read it… He thought it was negative at first, because I looked rather solemn or something. When I got close enough, I told him and he smiled and kissed me. And papa of course was pretty close by, so he picked up on what was going on and said, “am I the first to know something??” And I said “no you’re the third, but yeah!” πŸ˜› (God, myself and Peter first, haha) And he was very happy and hugged me. πŸ™‚ So then I texted mama and Hannah and everyone (most of my siblings that is) came to church and I told them and they were all very excited. Except Matthew who pretended to be freaked out. Haha.

And later we got to talk about it some, about how amazing it was that we were really going to have a baby. 

Now we do.


He’s very darling and he has indeed changed our lives completely. And sometimes it’s hard, like today when my back was spasming (going to the chiropractor tomorrow!!) and he would cry unless I held him while walking, or the times when my husband and I are finally able to just sit and chat and such and he wakes up right in the middle of it. 

But a lot of times it’s amazing. It’s kind of hard to describe parenthood so far, because it’s like the hardest thing we’ve done, and it doesn’t sound very good when you describe it, but yet… It’s really so great at the same time. And I’m so excited when others are going to have a baby, even though I know about how hard it is at times. Nothing worthwhile is ever easy, though. And this is definitely worthwhile. 

Five Minute Free Write

With a baby on my lap. Said baby is eating a giraffe at the moment. Adorably. I bet you never knew giraffes could be eaten adorably… Well, I have news for you. Pretty much everything babies do can be adorable, even down to burping. Sometimes even their cries are cute. Not so much for us grown humans, however. We have to work a lot harder to do adorable things. Oh well, life is just tough that way. It’s a good thing God made babies cute, though, cause they sure are a lot of work. Mine is fussing already. I think he needs a diaper change. Or maybe he’s just mad that I’m not talking to him. He’s really into talking already. And eating giraffes. Mostly. He also likes trying to crawl; that is, until he doesn’t  any more, at which point he proceeds to wail. Babies have pretty intense mood swings… My husband was surprised when he noticed this, haha. I guess it is startling if you haven’t seen it before. Only seconds left… Can I make it before he totally breaks down? Talking and typing is hard. I might start writing things like hey it’s okay! If I’m not careful. There time’s up!

Stitch Fix Box 1: Outfits

Okay, so most of my life I have not really cared about clothes. I just wore clothes and tried to make sure they weren’t hideous, though maybe some were; I don’t know. It wasn’t until I started going out with my now husband that I started caring. He, on the other hand, already cared about clothes and dressed nicely. We’re weird like that.😬

So anyway. Point being, these are not really great outfit pictures. Also did I mention I have a sick baby? Okay okay, here they are.

Item one: a navy blue blouse/shirt thingie. (Sorry, I don’t know the lingo) I do know enough to know it wasn’t very flattering on me, though. My postpartum belly is actually pretty small, but this shirt makes it look bigger. Not good. 😬 Also, it wasn’t super nursing friendly. I mean, when a baby is hungry you do what you have to do, but it’s nice if it’s convenient. And if I’m paying $58 for a shirt (which I literally never have done in my life, hello goodwill!), I really need to love it. I did like the color, though, and I liked the detail on the fabric. For a simple piece, it had a lot of interest. It was also comfy, so points there. But… No, I’m sending it back.

See? Pretty. πŸ™‚


And now for the skirt. I was really excited about this one when I pulled it out, but it turned out to be quite a bit big on me. I realized that apparently I am already back to a small skirt, so I shouldn’t have put medium on my style profile. Oops. My bad! I liked the print, the fabric, and the style… But I wasn’t going to pay $58 for something I would have to alter. So… Back it goes. Sniff.


Next, this silk top. Yes, silk, as in 100%, as in $88 for a top. 😱 It was pretty, and very, uh, silky… Ha. Seriously, though, it felt nice. As one of my friends said, it’s rather “mom chic”-ish. (Yes I’m wearing jeans, I just don’t do it often. Also these are my pre pregnancy jeans!)

Anyway, I did not really love it, and it was just too much to pay for something I didn’t really love.

The fit was a bit funky, too. 😬


On to the last two pieces… This knit maxi dress!! Fit perfectly, I can nurse in it, my husband likes it, I like the pattern… It’s a keeper! It did cost $78, which is a lot for me, but… I liked it so well that I’m willing to pay it. Well, my husband is. Ahem. I did use $20 of birthday money towards it, though! 😬

Close up of the print and Sophie, who, yes, lives up the the hype. Noah loves her. Hence she was on the bed with him; hence she ended up in the picture. Because why not.


And here’s Noah with her because CUTE!


Okaayyy… And now for the sandals. I actually liked them, which is saying a lot. I’m super picky about shoes. However, a. They cost $90 😱, and b. They didn’t fit quite right. So.. Back they go.

Close up. And baby legs. 😍


I kept one out of five items they sent, which is kinda what I figured would happen. I liked all five, though, which seriously impressed me!

So, what isΒ Stitch Fix?Β I’d been seen that name floating around on Pinterest, so I wondered too. I finally read about it recently, and this is what I found out.

First, you fill out a style profile. Lots of questions about size, likes and dislikes, and so on. Very thorough. You can also link it to your Pinterest, blog, etc, so they get an even clearer picture of your style.

Second, you schedule a “fix”. You can set it up to come as often as you’d like, or just go box to box. Each box costs $20, which goes toward any items you keep. If you don’t keep any, they keep your $20. If you buy all five, you get 25% off the whole thing!

Third, you wait with great anticipation for the box to come!! πŸ˜„ It really is pretty exciting. Haha.

Fourth, you open it eagerly and exclaim about what you got! And go try everything on and mix and match with clothes you already have. (This is definitely one of the big pluses of this service!)

Fifth, you go on their app or website and check out–let them know what you liked and disliked about everything and choose what you’re keeping and sending back.

Sixth, you pack whatever you’re not keeping in the prepaid bag they give you and send it back. You have three days to send it back; otherwise you’re automatically keeping all of it. 😬

And that’s it! Well, almost. If you refer a friend, you get $25 credit when they order their first box! πŸ˜„ If you’re considering trying it, I’d be very grateful if you usedΒ my link. 😊

And that’s all for now, folks! I really enjoyed it, but highly doubt I will do it again soon just because of budgets and stuff. Unless lots of people use my link. πŸ˜¬πŸ˜„

Stitch Fix 1: unboxingΒ 

First, my sweet baby is doing quite a bit better today, thank God. 😊 He’s still not 100%, but much closer. 

Second, to pick up where the last post left off…

First thoughts when I saw the stack: all blue! Both a good thing and a bad thing. Good, because I like blue and look good I it. Bad, because I already have tons of blue. 😬

First thoughts: I like this color! Interesting pattern. Looks a bit shapeless/too big. 😦


First thoughts: hmm, interesting. Not sure about the sleeves. Kinda pretty, not sure it’s my style. Noah was into it!


First thoughts: I love it!! Pretty color blue, nice pattern, breathable fabric…


First thoughts: yay a maxi dress! Looks nice enough, not sure on the pattern.

 

First thoughts: simple and classy, would match with the dress!

I have to say, I was really impressed with how well my stylist did for my first box. I’m really picky, and I actually liked everything. I did get some pictures of me trying everything on, but those are going to have to wait till tomorrow. Cause I’m too tired to keep going tonight. 😴 I think I’m getting sick now too… Between sleep deprivation and being sneezed and coughed on constantly, it’s entirely likely. Oh well, I haven’t been sick in around ten months or so… Can’t complain.

Anyway, I’m still excited about my first stitch fix box. If you want to learn more, here’s my stitch fix link so you can check out. If you order a box, I’ll get a credit!

Till tomorrow!!

It came!!


Oh the suspense! You’re just going to have to wait and see… (Cause I’m a mom now and am writing this with my thumb while walking and nursing because my poor recovering baby only wants to nurse while I’m standing… So I don’t have time to take pictures of me in the clothes yet.)

Okay, fine, here’s a sneak peak: 

P.S. To those reading this from Facebook… I’m not on there right now so if you want to comment, do it below. 😊