So we made it through the first six weeks of parenthood! We have learned so much – already – along the way! I can honestly say that we were absolutely clueless at first – but they say the best way to learn is by doing, right?
I sailed through hormonal-induced bliss the first couple of weeks and then the fatigue set in around week 2 or 3. Sleep deprivation is no joke! Since I’ve learned what helps soothe Ava best and what her sleep/wake cycles look like, everyday has become easier to know what she wants and needs! The following is a list of things that have really come in handy over the past few weeks. But, really, it is true when they say all you need is love! 🙂
Ava is quite the happy spitter and these burp cloths and these ones have been regulars in the washing machine. Receiving blankets like these ones are so versatile – a blanket, a burp cloth, etc. they are used all the time. Swaddle blankets like these ones and these ones let Ava relax enough to fall asleep. Seriously, we tried not swaddling her for a bit and we were semi-crazy for doing that – she loves to be bundled for naps and at nighttime. For safe sleep, we swear by these swaddles. She can’t wiggle out of them and they can’t come up around her face. Such a lifesaver and a big reason as to why she is able to typically sleep at night for 5-7 consecutive hours (woohoo!). Ava has been living in cozy onesies, pants, and one-piece outfits. I can’t get over how cute her PJ’s (like these ones) are! I’m always buying seasonal items before the season actually starts to get the most wear out of things, so, naturally my buying habits for baby girl are the same. I love these baby shorts and I just bought this one-piece from Old Navy that is even more darling in person – and I’m loving the entire newly launched Oh Joy! for Target line.
We are still using the Babyganics Baby Shampoo + Body Wash at bathtime and we love it! Also, this bathtub has allowed us to give baths solo – the sling holds the baby in the tub safely which is so helpful. The Babyganics lotion is also getting some serious use every night before bedtime. It smells sooo good. We are also still using these diapers because their absorption is the best plus the wetness indicator is key. I brush Ava’s hair every day with the cutest engraved brush my mom bought her.
Still using the Pack ‘N Play multiple times everyday as it’s our main changing station right now! Ava loooves just hanging out, kicking her legs, cooing, etc. in her the Pack ‘N Play. She self-entertains pretty well in this thing! She is sleeping in her Rock N Play which she loves and I think feels very cozy in at night. We are still loving our Britax Travel System and with this warmer weather we have been having, has gotten some use for walks around the neighborhood. This Swing has been a lifesaver and Ava sometimes naps in it during the day. The music and mobile are just added bonuses. Definitely a hit in our house and allows Nic and I to sit down for dinner together occasionally! The Ergo baby carrier is great and we feel like we will get more and more use out of it the older she gets. Other items we use daily? We love this drying rack and these pacifiers. When we do give a bottle, we love these bottles, the Dr. Brown’s bottle warmer and bottle sterilizer. For breastfeeding, I use the Medela Pump in Style Advanced and appreciate its efficiency. My sis-in-law recommended we use the Medela Quick Clean sterilizer bags to clean the pump parts which have been very easy to use.
While I’ve used multiple mommy resources, including Google, the two most helpful resources for me during these first six weeks have been the book The Happiest Baby on the Block and the breastfeeding website, KellyMom.com. They both have been invaluable! The Happiest Baby book is the best because it has taught me multiple ways to soothe Ava during her fussy times. And what I appreciate is that the book also explains why the strategies work. For example, it discusses the first three months as the “Fourth Trimester.” Basically, it describes the world as a scary place for newborns and all of the soothing techniques that we use and that work are the ones that imitate the womb. It talks about how newborns are not ready to be born until they are three months old but because of evolution and the size of the human brain, they have to be born when they are. The book is so interesting and worth the quick read. And KellyMom.com answers every single question I’ve had about breastfeeding. Which, I’ve had a million. Breastfeeding by far is one of the hardest things I’ve done but it’s all been worth it so far.
While I have not put much thought into what I’ve been wearing lately and have just been doing what is working – I’ve lived in nursing tanks from Target like this one and this one. I literally wear them under a cardigan/jacket/sweater/pj’s all the time. Love them. Cardigans like this long wrap one and this one have been on serious rotation for comfort, ease, and cuteness. While I’m starting to fit in some of my old jeans (thank goodness!), I still have been wearing my favorite maternity jeans, especially around the house. My husband is thankful we have this diaper bag for a gender neutral bag – and I love it too – the size and organization is wonderful!
Photos by Heather Arnita Photography.