Friday, August 29, 2014

Ryan's newborn photos

Larissa Schmitz from Larissa Rene Photography did the best job with Ryan's newborn photos. We can't wait to use her again! If you live around the Atlanta area, you should definitely consider her for your photography needs. She is so sweet, super talented, and very affordable. Everything you want in a photographer, right?! You can check her out here.

And speaking of photographs, this weekend Tiny Prints is offering great Labor Day deals! Tiny Prints is offering $25 off a $50 purchase (click here for the deal and use promo code TPSAVE25), 30% off your entire purchase (click here and use promo code LABOR14), and free shipping on orders over $49 (click here and use promo code FREESHIP49)

Thursday, August 28, 2014

How to swaddle with an Aiden+Anais blanket

We are crazy about the Aiden + Anais swaddle blankets in our house! I made this video for a friend who asked about our swaddle technique and decided I should share it on here as well in case it could work for any of y'all too.

Ryan is one month old in this video and weighs just under 11lbs. These blankets with this swaddle method have been our go-to sleep helper since we brought him home from the hospital.

For a list of my other recommended products for the first month, click here and here.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Recommended baby products for the first month

I can't believe our little guy will be one month tomorrow! The time has flown by and he has already grown and changed so much. We're still using most of the recommended products for the first two weeks, but we've added a number of new ones to the mix!

I want to keep a list of what has worked for us so that hopefully when we have more kids in the future, we'll remember what we did and what we used the most. And if any of y'all can benefit from this list, well then that will just be a bonus. 

Sound Machine
Ryan slept in his crib for the first time the night before his 3 week birthday. I'm not sure if it was the room, the crib, the swaddle, or the sound machine... or maybe a combination of it all, but he has been sleeping like a champ! We use the HoMedics Sound Machine and set it on the ocean waves setting.
Aiden and Anais Easy Swaddle Blanket
I wrote about their original swaddle blankets in my recommended products for the first two weeks, and then just this week, my friend Andrea introduced me to their new easy swaddle blankets and I absolutely love them! In fact, I just ordered two more (this one and this one) today. They're made of the same great natural muslin material and button instead of velcro like other swaddles. I am a BIG fan!

BABYBJORN Carrier One 
The BABYBJORN Baby Carrier One is their newest model baby carrier. It allows you to carry your baby four different ways and all the way up to 33lbs. I like it better than the Ergo because I want Ryan to be able to face out when he gets a little bigger. My sister's boys loved facing out in the BabyBjorn when they were babies- I can't wait for Ryan to do the same! Okay, actually I can- I don't want him to grow... ;)

Medela Pump
You should definitely check with your insurance to see if you can get one of these for free. Yes, FREE! My insurance offered a choice between three different pumps, but the Medela Pump is the one I had heard the most about. And now they are so much smaller too, which is great for someone like me who doesn't like to take up too much cabinet space. Check out this website for more info to see if you qualify for a free pump through your insurance. But if you can't get one for free, the one I have and love is on sale on Amazon right now for $145 including shipping. That is a great price!
Also, these Medela Steam Bags make cleaning the bottles after pumping SO quick and easy! I'm so glad my sis-in-law Jennifer told me about them- they are great! And thanks to my friend Andrea's recommendation, I also have the Medela soap for an occasional deeper soak/clean in the sink.

Simple Wishes Hands Free Breast Pump Bra
This thing is awesome. My sis-in-law Karen let me borrow hers, and I feel like it's a hidden gem for making pumping easy and efficient. I'm a major multi-tasker, so the thought of pumping AND doing something else at the same time is definitely appealing. If you plan to pump, you need this bra!

Tommy Tippy Bottles
I love these Tommy Tippee bottles. Before Ryan was born, I had read about them being great for predominately breast-fed babies, with a nipple that makes transitioning between the breast and bottle easy and natural. And we have definitely experienced that! Matt usually gives Ryan his before-bed bottle each night while I pump. It could be completely in my head, but I feel like him taking the bottle before bed is why he is giving such long stretches at night already. And he hasn't had the least bit of trouble nursing with me during the day. Plus, Matt likes that time of feeding him at night, which I think is super sweet. :)

Maximum Strength Desitin
Y'all, I am totally one of those moms who wanted everything to be all-natural. I bought the more expensive, all-natural bath products and lotions (which I do happen to love- you can check them out here), and even got the diaper rash "barrier cream" by the same brand. Poor buddy had a diaper rash that would come and go basically since we brought him home, and I felt like I was trying everything (airing out, breast milk, corn starch, expensive "all-natural" wipes) and then, my friend Steph let me use her maximum strength Desitin (you know, the stuff we all grew up on and survived just fine with?!) and I kid you not, his diaper rash was cleared up by the time I changed him again after his next feeding. Seriously! The stuff's amazing.

Diaper Changing Pads
We keep one of these diaper changing pads on top of Ryan's changing table and carry them in the diaper bag for on-the-go changes. I imagine these are extra great for boys since they tend to "release" at the perfect time in between the dirty diaper coming off and the clean one going on. ;) While I have still washed his changing pad cover a few times, it has been spared a number of extra washes thanks to these nifty little disposable pads.

Crib Sheet Saver
Just like the diaper changing pads, these crib sheet savers help prevent you from having to change the sheet (which is not a quick or easy job!) when your little buddy spits up or tinkles through his diaper, clothes, AND swaddle thanks to mama forgetting the "point south" rule of a diaper change. :)

Boon Grass Drying Rack
The grass drying rack gives you a space for drying your bottles, and it's kinda fun looking too. I have this one, known as "the grass," but they also have a larger version called "the lawn," if you have more bottles and need more drying space.

So that's it for now! I'm sure I'll have more favorites to share as he continues to grow... although for now I just want time to SLOW down!