Judging Mom

Last night I was scrolling through Instagram when I came across a picture of a mom laying with her son in bed. It was a beautiful capture. I scrolled and read the caption that she was actually breastfeeding; I thought that makes the picture even sweeter. Then I scrolled and saw the comments. Some of them were just awful, commenting on how she was thin so she must leave her child with a nanny while she worked out, etc. It broke my heart for the mother in the picture. Not once did that ever cross my mind, I never thought about her weight and what she looked like, I noticed the simplicity and beauty of the photo and the representation it had on motherhood.

In the nine months I was pregnant I gained 29 lbs. I was in the “normal” range and I was happy about that. I had Emersyn and three days later came home to try on my pre-pregnancy pants to see if they would fit, to my surprise I couldn’t get them past my hips. I was devastated as I put my maternity pants back on. But why? My body just gave birth and I had this unrealistic expectation that my body would suddenly lose 29 lbs that took 9 months to gain, in the matter of three days. It took time and honestly I ignored it and focused on my daughter. Flash forward 6 months and I’m now 2 lbs less than my pre-pregnancy weight and I’m proud. With that said there are women who don’t lose the weight right away or ever for that matter and that’s fine. I will never judge a mom based on the weight she gained/lost. I will never judge a mom period. That is not my place. We don’t know what that individual has gone through or is going through. We all have struggles and dealing with negative comments from other mom’s should never be one of them. I’m sure there are still plenty of momma’s who have a few extra pregnancy pounds left or momma’s who can’t keep weight on, but you know what, that doesn’t make her any less of a mom. Being a mom is hard work and the last thing any of us mom’s need to do is feel bad about ourselves. We created life and in some cases adopted life. We are raising tiny people to be decent human beings and how are we supposed to do that when grown moms are making those hateful comments. We need to stick together, there is enough hate in the world that we are trying to protect our kids from. We are a group of powerful women, we are raising the future. I hope that my little girl will grow up to show love to others and acceptance, never hate. I never want to be the reason my daughter learned to have hatred towards others. So please ladies be respectful, understanding and judgment free. We’re all beautiful and in our kids eyes, we are the greatest people, live up to that.

 

Baby Travel Tips

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Hi Y’all. I wanted to write about how we survived a 3 ½ hour plane ride with a 5 ½ month old. (Honestly, it wasn’t that bad!) I found some super helpful tricks and I wanted to share them with you other mom’s and dad’s out there.

Tips and Tricks:

Pacifier holders- Buy some pacifier holders and clip the toys to your baby! This prevents the baby from throwing toys and you attempting to find them on the “clean” floor.

Pacifier clips

Overnight diaper- We packed a couple of night time diapers with us and changed E right before we got on the plane so that the diaper could absorb a lot more and we could try and avoid a possible blowout. (We successfully avoided)

Nursing/bottles- When the plane takes off and you start to descend make sure to either nurse or bottle feed your little one. This will help pop their ears so that they aren’t in pain. Even sucking a binky may help since their jaw is moving.

Toys- If your child/baby is older buy them a new toy so that they can have something they’ve never played with before. I bought emmie, Sassy Wonder Wheel Activity Center, we stuck it to the window and she had a blast!

Sassy Wonder Wheel

Blanket- I brought a receiving blanket for E and it came in handy. The plane is chilly and this helped her snuggle up.

Car seat carrying case- We bought the J.L. Childress Backpack Padded Car Seat Travel Bag. This specific one was a backpack style and helped us carry it through the airport. Also, I recommend checking it at the gate, this allows for less of an opportunity of getting damaged.

J.L. Childress Link

Clorox wipes- Trust me the plane is not clean and your baby will be touching everything. We made sure to wipe everything down so that if she touched it we wouldn’t have to worry about constantly cleaning her hands.

Ergo Baby- Baby wear! This freed up our hands so much and was a lot easier than lugging E around on our hip. This will also free up the stroller (if you’re bringing one) and you can put bags in it.

Ergobaby

**Breastmilk- you can bring breastmilk through security, they just have to check it if it’s above a certain number of ounces. The flight attendants also took the bottle and heated it up in hot water for us. They were very accommodating you just have to ask.

Relax! Don’t forget to relax; your baby will do just fine. If he/she starts to cry it’s okay. Things do happen and people will understand. Chances are you won’t be the only one with a baby on the plane. The babies can sing the song of their people together!

Baby Booty

 

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Hi Y’all! I’ve had some questions from some other momma’s on what diapers I use. This is a loaded question because we’ve tried many. I have outlined them all below along with my review. What we are currently using is The Honest Company diapers. I absolutely love them and would recommend them to anyone. When I was pregnant I knew I wanted to use the least amount of chemicals on/around Emersyn. (I know, I’m one of those mom’s) I did a lot of research and found that The Honest Company diapers are plant based diapers made without chlorine or bleach processing. These diapers are also made without latex, synthetic fragrances or lotions.  Only downside is, these diapers are more expensive. They do offer a bundle option that costs $79 for six packs of diapers and four wipes. (Normally those wipes are a whopping $4.99 each!) However, they run frequent promotions and often have a discount code. Another great place to buy these diapers is at Target. Target runs a promotion on their Cartwheel app that is usually for 20%. They also sometimes offer a $10 giftcard with a purchase of two boxes of diapers. This makes each diaper. 25. GREAT DEAL! Plus it doesn’t hurt that they have such cute designs for each season. Also, if you do the bundle you can schedule diaper delivery each month! Extremely convienent.

Diapers we’ve used:

Huggies- Little Snugglers: We used these for the first couple of months really liked them. Em didn’t have any blow outs or leaks (until she got older and was sleeping 11 hours at night.) The diapers were thick and had the yellow line to indicate if she was wet or not.

Huggies- little Snugglers

Huggies- Snug & Dry- I was not a big fan of these, I felt like they were thinner than the Little Snugglers and didn’t hold as much, which in turn meant we were going through diapers more often. They would also leave the little gel balls on Emmie.

Huggies- Overnight Diapers- I REALLY recommend these for babies who sleep through the night. Emmie has never leaked out of these and she doesn’t wake up in the middle of the night needing a diaper change. I haven’t switch these over yet and we continue to use these.

Huggies Overnights

Luvs- I would not recommend these diapers, I don’t feel like they hold a lot and we had to change Emmie almost immediately after she went. We didn’t finish using the bag we bought and switched back to Huggies.

Luvs

Pampers- Pampers wasn’t my favorite. The diaper would leave little marks on Emmies hiney and I wasn’t crazy about that. I also think she was sensitive to these and caused her to have a little bit of a diaper rash. Other mom’s love Pampers, so they may just not have worked for Emersyn’s skin.

Pampers

Honest Company- We LOVE these, like I mentioned in the post above, these are plant based diapers. They come in adorable prints and fit Em well. She doesn’t leak out of them and we don’t have to constantly change her. (She does have the occasional blow out but unfortunately those aren’t avoidable, gross but unavoidable.)

Honest Company Diapers

Out of every diaper we used, I would highly recommend, Huggies- Little Snugglers and The Honest Company. What diapers do you all use on your little baby bums?

Baby Takeover

Hi Y’all! I wanted to discuss an important topic today, baby takeover. If you’re a mom or dad you can relate to this all too well. When you’re pregnant with your first it’s just you and your SO. All the alone time, date nights, and snuggles with the dog are uninterrupted by baby.

Then you have said baby and your life quickly flips and becomes all about baby. I have a harder time leaving baby E than Paul does. He admits it, I don’t know if it’s a mom thing or if I’m crazy. (Surely I’m not alone) I feel like every second off of work I should be spending with my baby. When I went back to work I felt like I was missing out on my baby girls’ life. Luckily, I have a wonderful mom (emmie’s Gigi) who watches her so I get snapchats and baby talk frequently, but it doesn’t help the guilt I first felt. How do you explain to a baby that you have to leave but you’ll be back or the fact that you only get 5 hours with them before bedtime. I have the hardest time with this. When I’m home with E I want to be as present as possible, phones away, not watching TV, just playing with my little girl. On the weekends I want to do the same thing. I always said before having Emersyn my man and I would continue date nights and alone time. Which I know is so very important so that you can continue a great relationship with each other. However, after our little girl arrived I found that so much harder to do. Anytime we are out I’m constantly wondering what she’s doing, or what I could be doing with her. I think my fear is I already miss out on so much since I’m at work, that I don’t want to miss anymore of her little life. I have already seen first-hand how fast they grow. First I’m holding this tiny baby and next thing I know, I have a six month old. I love my fiancé dearly and I love time with him but I have struggled with allowing myself to be okay away from Emersyn. I don’t have anxiety that she isn’t being taken care of; I have sadness that I don’t get to be the one taking care of her. We have a date night planned to go to a concert and hotel. (First night away from baby) and I’m looking forward to it, but I already know I’m going to miss her. I think that’s where us mom’s need to find a balance. Allowing ourselves to take a breather and recharge our battery. If you get excited for the babysitter to come over or can’t wait to get out, I’m not calling you a bad mom by any means. In fact leave a comment on how you learned to just relax away from baby!

Utterly Momma

Let’s talk Boobs!

 

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To breastfeed or to formula feed. I’m not going to lecture you on which is better, I personally feel as long as you’re feeding your baby and he/she is happy and loved that’s all that  matters. Early on in my pregnancy I knew I wanted to breastfeed, and I didn’t have the slightest clue what was next. I started reading (my favorite thing to do) and became overwhelmed. “Try this position if your baby doesn’t latch.” “Cracked nipples” “breastfeeding in private,” I don’t feel like I need to go on. The countless articles out there gave me information but I still had no idea what I was doing. I bought the supplies, Medela Pump, Nursing Pads, Nipple Cream, Pumping Bottles, Breast Shield Wipes, Nursing Bras, and the list goes on. Nothing prepared me for what breastfeeding would take until I actually had Baby E. Thankfully now and days each hospital has a lactation consultant that comes in everyday while you’re in the hospital, utilize them! I was extremely lucky that Em had no trouble latching and was a nursing pro (at least that’s what they told me, I still was in shock that I just gave birth to a child.) The hospital made sure I put her on a strict schedule, every 2-4 hours she had to eat. I took that very seriously, so at 2AM when she didn’t want to eat and she wanted to sleep. I began sobbing, frustrated that I couldn’t get her to latch, and terrified that it had been 4 1/2 hours since she ate last. I called for help, I was then reassured by the nurse that she was okay, and she took her to the nursery and brought her back 2 hours later when she was ready to eat. The biggest lesson I learned from that is, if I freak out she can sense it, if she’s hungry she will eat, and breastfeeding is hard but so rewarding. Your body not only created this human being but now your body is providing food so that this little being can survive.  Nights are hard and I found myself frustrated that I was the only one who could feed her in the middle of the night, envious that Paul could sleep. But then I looked down and saw this tiny little face, in awe that I was finally holding our baby, the moment that I prayed for, for so long. I came up with some breastfeeding tips that I have learned along the way. If I don’t have something listed that works for you, please leave a comment so that other mommas can see.!

 

Breastfeeding tips:

Find a position that baby likes- The hospital will teach you all the different ways that you can feed your baby. Don’t be afraid to try them, what works for one baby may not work for another.

Ask for help- If you feel like you aren’t producing enough milk or baby isn’t latching, contact the lactation consultant. My daughter’s pediatrician gave me a script for me to make an appointment with one. They are there to help, no question is embarrassing.

Stay hydrated and eat enough- If you don’t stay hydrated or eat enough calories your body can’t make the milk your baby needs. I believe the rule of thumb is 8oz of water after each feeding on top of your normal water intake.

Fenugreek- I contacted my OBGYN on things that I could take to increase my milk supply so that I could start a freezer stash and found that the fenugreek capsule seemed to help. (plant-based)

Pump- This may not be for everyone, but this gave baby E’s daddy a chance to feed her. She was two weeks when he finally got to feed her and it helped him feel a part of the process.

Wake Baby Up- Nursing is naturally calming and soothing to your baby, make sure they don’t immediately fall asleep before they finish nursing, otherwise they will be back up again in an hour or so and the cycle will continue.

I have linked the breast pump and nursing supplies that I use below:

Medela Breast Pump

Lansinoh Disposable Nursing Pads

Nursing Bra

Medela Bottles

Medela Quick Clean

A picture of my little love to end the post!

 

 

About This Momma

Hi Y’all! My name is Ashley and I’m a new mom to my little girl, Emersyn. When I first found out I was pregnant I felt overwhelmed. This was uncharted territory and I had no idea what I was in for. The first thing I did was go to Google (naturally.) I researched, read, pinned and took so many screenshots. I think I have done more research now than I did in College! It wasn’t until I was talking with a girlfriend at work about her upcoming bundle of joy that I realized I should put all of my research and life experience of mommin’ down in writing, in hopes to help the other momma’s out there.

A little about myself: I’m 24 years young, and am engaged to the man I’m absolutely head over heels for. I went to University of North Texas and graduated with a degree in Communications and a minor in Public Relations and Advertising. I work for an E commerce company as a Program Manager. I have a little girl named Emersyn Olivia and she has absolutely changed my life. I give her way too many kisses and can’t get enough of her snuggles. I’m an open book and can’t wait to share my life/experiences.

Newborn/Baby Must Haves:

 

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. Clicking these links does not cost you anything. The products are not more expensive through these links. 

Hi Y’all! I hope everyone has had a great day so far and if you clicked into my blog, welcome! I’m happy you’re here. The first official blog post, I wanted to do a must have list for baby. These are just a few items I have personally used and come to love. If you have any items you love that aren’t on the list please leave a comment for all of the other momma’s to see.

  • The Owlet Monitor- This isn’t a necessity but it definitely gives me a piece of mind at night. The Owlet Monitor straps to your baby’s foot and monitor’s his/her heart rate and oxygen level. The alarm will go off if the heart rate goes too low or too high or if the oxygen gets too low. We have had the alarm go off when E was sick and her oxygen went to low. The alarm jerked her awake and her oxygen went right back up.
  • Owlet Monitor
  • Swaddle Blankets- I personally love the swaddle blankets that come with the Velcro so that I don’t have to attempt to tuck any loose ends. ( I attempted and baby E unwrapped herself within minutes.)
  • Swaddle Blankets
  • http://shopstyle.it/l/fC0O
  • Mamaroo- My parents bought this item for us and Emersyn LOVED it. There are different movement options along with sounds. Honestly, any swing would work it doesn’t have to be the mamaroo. I’ve seen several mom’s use the rock and play swing and their baby loves it. The constant motion is what’s key.
  • Mamaroo
  • White Noise Machine- I registered for this and didn’t realize how truly AMAZING noise could be. I have played this for Emersyn since she was three weeks old and she loves it. I turn hers to the heartbeat sound but there are tons of options. Plus the owl one we currently have can also be used for a nightlight when the child is older.
  • Owl White Noise Machine
  • NoseFrida- Before I was a mom the thought of sucking my child’s boogers out with this thing absolutely made me cringe. However, when your kid is sick with a stuffy nose this baby works wonders!! (Plus there are filters to prevent their boogers from coming close to your mouth.) You do have to be careful that you don’t suck too hard; this can cause their membranes to become more swollen.
  • NoseFrida
  • OogieBear- While we are on the subject of boogers, the OggieBear can help get those dry boogers out of their nose and the ear wax out of their ear. This is a little stick with a loop on each end. The bear’s ears prevent you from digging too far in causing pain.
  • OogieBear
  • The Windi- This is made by the same company that made the Nose Frida. The windi is only meant to use when your child has severe gas pains or constipation. We used this on E and it helped relieve her belly and calm her crying from the pain.
  • The Windi