New Mom Advice…

Is everywhere, literally, and it is absolutely annoying! People will always offer their unwanted advice and as a mom, you have to decide if you will take it or not.

Now, for starters, people need to understand that just because you are a mom, does NOT mean you are an expert… at anything. And beyond that, most of the advice you will get is either irrelevant (b/c every family/mom/baby is different), outdated, or just plain ‘ole bad!

So I have decided to share with you some “great” advice that we have decided to straight up ignore:

  • NEVER let baby sleep in your bed,   
    • So this is actually great advice, as it comes from the American Academy of Pediatrics for safe sleep. And honestly for that reason, I am 100% against cosleeping and bed sharing, however, I must admit, we are bed sharing. This was not by choice but let me tell you, if you have a c-section, it will likely happen. Here is why, after having major abdominal surgery, you will not be able to easily bend or twist to retrieve the baby from a bassinet and it will cause a lot of pain when you attempt it. When we first got home, he would sleep in a bassinet without any problems but it was too painful for me to lift him out. I pushed through and kept trying for about a week before giving up and I partially believe that was one reason my healing process took longer than expected.

 

  • Give your baby mashed potatoes or pet’s milk to help him gain weight,
    •  Oh HELL to the NAW! So quicky story, Maxy would vomit up to eight times per day due to some unknown GI issues, so he had (and still has) poor weight gain. So someone, who will remain nameless, thought it would be a good idea to give him some abnormal milk and table food. This is the dumbest thing I have ever heard, why would I give him something that could possibly upset his GI tract even more? *rolls eyes*

 

  • Do not give baby a pacifier,
    • This is what they tell you if you are breastfeeding since it could cause nipple confusion. However, we gave Maxy one for two reasons: 1. I never planned to breastfeed so I did not care about nipple confusion and 2. Thumbsucking is one ugly habit to break. I see it first hand with my nephew.

 

  • Do not put baby on a schedule, let him lead you, 
    • Nope! Growing up my mom was great – but she was an unorganized mess. (Lol, trust me, everyone would agree!) That actually drove me to (literally) be OCD  about planning and scheduling. So I firmly believe children crave and NEED structure from a young age. And I will say, Max is three months old and he is already on a schedule that he recognizes. I believe he is so comfortable with his schedule b/c it started the day he was born.
    • Lil’ backstory: at the hospital, we were told to feed him 1oz every two hours. So… this stuck, and as he grows and eats more, we just incorporate a few more things. For ex: He eats 3.5oz every 3 hours. At night, I massage or bathe him, feed him, then leave him to sleep. And get this – he puts himself to sleep. 😉

 

  • Do not read parenting books/articles b/c it will not teach you to be a parent, 
    • It could be b/c I love school or it could be that I love planning, but I read everything I could get my hands on! After all, I am not able to go to my mom to just ask for advice about everything so I am alone in all of this. I truly believe all the great things we read and the classes we took, has helped us to parent Max. And he is one little independent guy.

 

  • Be quiet when baby is napping,
    • Based on things I have read, this is bad for baby. If you are always quiet when baby is napping, baby will grow to only be able to sleep if everything is 100% quiet. This means every little noise will wake your little one. No one wants that! We have been doing this and guess what? Max will sleep through the tv, talking, and even the fire alarm. Literally. Disclaimer: at night, you should keep noises to a minimum b/c that helps baby distinguish between naps and bedtime.

 

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Its A Boy!

Okay, as you can probably guess, the baby is here!

And he has been here for a little while now; 2 months and 20 days to be exact!

 

The Babe: arrived via c-section on August 14 at 12:25PM. He came in weighing 7lbs 10oz and 21 inches long. He was literally the most beautiful baby I have ever seen. I was put under so I did not get to meet him right away. I am not sure what his very first cry sounded like but I bet it was beautiful. He is the sweetest little boy, much like Jake.

The Mom: I am doing great! My recovery went really smooth and I was not in much pain at all. I was actually able to comfortably walk before leaving the hospital. I was even able to quit my pain meds before the prescription even ran out. S/o to my amazing DR.

The Dad: Jake has been a real trooper during this whole entire process. He is the best dad anyone could ever ask for. He stays up late after working long shifts. He makes bottles in the middle of the night. He changes tons of diapers. He does it all, lol.

The Life: I would actually say were killing it. No, really. We are very lucky this little guy sleeps through the night and rarely cries. He is the best! Whenever we go to appointments, the staff always comment on how great we look, how organized we are, and how intuitive we have been. They always tell us they have never seen new parents handling things the way we do. This makes me really happy b/c I believe it. But it really is b/c we have the best baby, so he makes everything very easy for us.

Since I have been away for so long, I have decided to do weekly posts on various topics. I just want to share some things I am thankful for, some things we are up to, etc. Now, although I have decided, it does not mean it will happen. But I am going to try extra hard to make it happen. 🙂 

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Max Steele, the babe. ❤

Not MY Delivery!

This is a long-ish post about the devastating news I recently received that changed my entire birth plan.

 

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Here is the beautiful drawing I created as my birth plan for delivering this August. Unfortunately, none of this will happen as I am not allowed to deliver vaginally. My DR thought it would be beneficial for me to have an MRI to test for a neurological disorder that runs in my family.

I had no worries b/c I knew it would come back negative. Right? WRONG! It came back positive; I was diagnosed with Chiari Malformation Type I. This means my cerebellar tonsils are herniating down through my magnum foramen.

Therefore pushing during labor could cause too much pressure, resulting in a seizure, deeper herniation, and even death. Although I was bummed about being scheduled for a c-section, it was not so bad b/c at least Jake and I could experience this wonderful time together. I later learned that I cannot receive neither an epidural or a spinal, as those also pose too many risks for my condition. So now I’m forced to get general anesthesia during my c-section, which means Jake cannot be present for the baby’s birth. He may not be able to cut the umbilical cord and I will not be able to nurse the baby, as a result of the anesthesia.

 

On to better news: 

We are officially hospital and baby ready! The bags are packed, clothes are washed, and the nursery is complete. All that is left is to sanitize bottles the week before baby arrives and install the car seat next week. We are also having our carpet professionally cleaned but that is not as exciting.

And How is that Little One?

Baby is doing great! Gaining so much weight; coming in at an astounding 6 lbs and 5 oz. This means the baby is measuring in the 85th percentile, 🙂

Pic 1 shows the baby’s adorable face, although s/he is blocking the view b/c s/he is obviously tired of taking photos. Or maybe the baby is just being dramatic. Pic 2 shows the “fat rolls” the baby accumulated over the past few weeks. We are so grateful this little one is doing well and gaining a lot.

 

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And here is the most beautiful 3D ultrasound of the baby at 35 weeks and 4 days old. One upside to the c-section is that we know the exact date the baby will come. We are now just 22 very short days away.

Arriving:

Saturday, August 12, 2017, in the AM.

 

How’s Baby Anyway?!

Believe it or not, we are 54 very short days from meeting this little bundle of joy!

Baby:

Everything is going and great and progressing right along. We decided to hold off on posting until we had more very cute pics to share! The good news is, we just had an appointment this week, therefore, we do have new pics to share!

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A little profile of this sweet kid. 

 

We found out this little chunker is measuring 10 days ahead of schedule. (Coming in at a whopping 4 lbs!) And the little one is already head down. We meet with the DR again next week for another routine visit. Since we are nearing the end of this portion of our journey, our visits will become more frequent.

 

 

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The little one has hair!

 

Mama and Papa:

Jake and I are doing great, just wrapping up things around the house and at work, as we prepare to welcome the little one. We have bought all the baby necessities and essentials. Now we just need to start packing our bags, install the carseat, wash the clothes, and sterilize the bottles.

We have completed our baby care class and started our weekly birthing classes, which have been very informative. We have narrowed down the list of potential baby names.

We have even found out the gender! (Well… Jake has.)

 

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The chunkiest cheeks in all the land!

Now just look at this cute wittle face!! We are dying to meet this kid. Stay tuned.

 

Scrapbooking for Baby!

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Hey!

I’m so excited to share one of the cute things we have started this pregnancy. It is a scrapbook! Background: this actually started as our relationship scrapbook; I started creating pages to record various milestones in our relationship. (I have a page for our first birthdays together, our first car/apartment, etc.)

Since learning about baby, we decided to switch gears so this little one can have a little keepsake about its parents and our life before baby.

The Page:

This page just simply explains our lives and hobbies before we met each other. Next, there is a little section that explains things we enjoy doing together, once we started dating. I intentionally created two different backgrounds for our pics, to show how opposite we are, LOL. I also used different fonts for our headers, on our personal sections. As you can see, Jake was such a sweetie and helped with the page. He added in his own handwriting, for authenticity (wink, wink), and he also helped give me ideas for the page’s layout.

 

BONUS: Scrapbooking Tips:

  1. Keep it simple, especially if you are a beginner, like me.
  2. Get inspired, look online to find resources and ideas. (IG, Pinterest, etc.)
  3. Use themed pages, this helps you create an organized piece of work.
  4. Have fun! Everything requires practice, so do not get upset if your 1st book is not perfect.
  5. If it is too stressful, pay someone else to make it. (Like Shutterfly!)

Baby Talk:

Pregnancy is still going well, thank God. (No, literally. Thank God!) Tune in for the 16th week update, coming soon. Ps… I want to wait until the week is officially over, the pics are taken, and we have some good content! So pretty please come back. 🙂

Until Next Time, C. L

Pinch Me, I Must Be Dreaming.

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Oh. Em. Gee! (I literally keep screaming b/c I cannot even believe I am about to announce this.)

Jake…and I, had our first baby, together. (:

I know I never announced that we were expecting but that is b/c we built our baby.

Now. Without further ado, I introduce to you: Cassio R-D. Our Build-A-Bear son.

Today we had the pleasure of creating him. As exciting as this is, it is not the biggest part of our news.

Today, we even had the pleasure of checking out…PAUSE.

Lets first take a quick look at our relationship, how I feel about him, and how he feels about me.

*Note: This is long, feel free to skip to the next italic section to get the short version of this post.*

Our Story:
we met ‘online’ Jan. 2014. We hung out soon after. Our first meeting was really laid back and casual. While I thought he was a little boring, and he thought I was crazy (I pulled my taser out on him. Lol.) We both wanted to see each other again.

By Feb. 2014, we knew we would be together. He asked me out, and I agreed. We have exclusively been dating since then.

Not long after, he expressed his love for me. While I was a little surprised (b/c technically he claimed to have loved me before we were dating), I actually believed him.

Well since then, we have moved in together. Met the parents. (Grand parents and cousins too). Etc.

Recently, during a deep conversation with him, I realized just how much he means to me. I realized that he is literally he most amazing man that I know (and in the world). There is nothing I would not do for him. And I really love him. Everything about him.

I enjoy how he keeps me grounded and can always calm me down. I enjoy how easily he can make me laugh and smile. I enjoy how he interacts with my family. I enjoy how dedicated he is to making me happy. I enjoy how he makes me a better person. And most importantly, I enjoy how he accept me as I am. (Like really, I am in serious need of anger management and he is so dedicated to helping me through the process.)

Just for the record, I have never felt like this about anyone before. He is my first love, as well as my first serious relationship. There is not anyone else I would rather be with. He impresses and surprises me everyday. I cannot wait until we can spend the rest of our days together.

Back to the initial story…

Today, Jake and I looked at some rings! Yes, rings. Wedding rings. Engagement rings. Promise rings. Etc.

It was soo much fun. I tried some things on. We talked prices, styles, colors, materials, etc. The women were so nice and helpful. They took my ‘no vision’ (b/c this was our first day looking, we had nothing in mind) an turned it into a beautiful ring.

Yep, this means we picked the ring out. (Pics coming soon, as it first has to be sized and picked up).

I cannot wait to share the pics with everyone.

Now, as anyone can imagine, this day was beyond perfect and special. I do not think you guys actually understand!

The past few days, we stayed the night at my moms place (to celebrate Mimi’s birthday -pics coming soon). However, my mom mentioned that (long story short) I was smothering Jake.

And jokingly, he agreed. I was devastated. Not b/c he agreed, but b/c this was the first time anyone has ever said anything. And… I know it is true.

B/c we live together, we obviously do not get much time apart. However, whenever we go out, I have to hold his hand. Or sit next to him. And basically… smother him.

Now, it is not intentional however, since he started third shift, our schedule has been off. He gets home early, we eat. Nap. I get up soon after, but he is still sleeping. And before you know it, he is getting up and ready for work.

While we are physically together everyday, we have not spent as much time together. We have not done dinner and a movie in a couple weeks. We have not cooked together for a while. And we have not taken a walk for a while. It has been work-work-work for the past few weeks.

Then, to make things worse, we have not even been spending time together on his off days. We used to spend those days staying in bed and cuddling, but b/c he is helping my family paint, we have been with them. And everyone loves him, so they want to hang out with him. And play with him. And talk to him. So I have been forced to share my boyfriend with everyone else, note- our lack of time alone.

I know I should be happy that everyone loves him, and he loves them however, it just makes me feel like I never get him to myself. It also made me realize just how mean I am. Not to him, but to everyone. (I should be excused, I need anger management… like really). But, I shall not justify anything. I guess there is a small part of me that is afraid he will possibly break up with me b/c ‘I am so rude and so mean.’

So after a long few days of feeling like a terrible and annoying gf, I decided to give him a break and stay away for the weekend. But after spending time together today, we assured me that I have nothing to worry about.

It feels good. No great. Well… it is an inexplicable feeling.

Well this has been a very long and emotional post (no, I did not cry… I am not the crying type.), I must bring it to an end. For I have some things to look up and some planning to do.

But… to recap, we had a baby bear and picked out the most beautiful ring in the world today. I am internally and externally grateful for Jake.

A Party For Jake.

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Lets first discuss this pic: It is my ‘Happy Birthday’ page. It includes some hand lettering as well as illustrations. As you can see, I am getting pretty darn good. 🙂

I am really proud of my work, so more pics coming soon.

So July 6 will be Jake’s 25th birthday*. So with his birthday coming up, I decided to buy him a gift and throw him a surprise party.

The Gift:

As you probably can guess, the gift was the hardest part. I could not decide what to get him. He does not play videos games, he does not have any real hobbies, and I hate getting people things they ‘need’ over things they ‘want’ for their birthday. After searching long and hard, I could not choose between a Beef Jerky variety set and Doctor Who disappearing coffee mug.

Well we played a game where I call out random gifts in a random order (with the two gifts I was most heavily considering included) and he told me ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on whether or not he would want it.

It turned out he did not want either. 😦

And my initial thought was to get him a really nice and rather expensive Coach wallet. (It was like super nice and he needed one b/c his old one was falling apart.) But… he needed it and I know he is not particularly into expensive things.

So I literally had no idea what to get him and I wanted to give up. But we went to the outlet mall and could not pass up the great sales going on in Coach and we ended up with a Coach wallet (for him) and a Coach bag (for me). 😉

Everything was great.

The Party:

Due to everything going on, we had to postpone the party to one day later. And right before I knew it my mom had shared the news, so it was no longer a surprise.

So yesterday we grilled a few things, had some pasta, and cake. It was a lot of fun. I think he enjoyed himself. We even saw fireworks downtown and did some sparklers with the littles.

Over the time we stayed with my family, he talked to his parents, who obviously wanted to come visit him for his birthday.

Only problem is, they planned to come Sunday and I would be here Sunday b/c I have a community service-free weekend.

The Parents:

Because they were planning to come this weekend, I asked if he wanted me to go home so he could spend time with them alone.

Well he stated that I could stay, if I wanted to meet him. (Awkward Moment.)

Now, it is not that I do not want to meet them. I just feel that he felt a bit obligated b/c he has met my entire family. I would have preferred he allowed me to meet them on his own terms, perhaps a time when he felt more comfortable and less obligated. I am in no rush to meet them, I just like for things to happen naturally.

So we did not talk about it more, until he was headed to work. I attempted to get out of it, by saying I would go home and come back next weekend. However, it was too late. Apparently he told his dad that I would be here. So I got stuck here in a sense.

And now I just feel awkward b/c I am not really sure he genuinely wants me to meet them.

But for the record, I am not upset nor am I nervous. Everyone loves me.

So expect another post after the weekend.