Friday, April 8, 2016

Newborn products I've loved

Quick 6 week Baby update: Harrison is transitioning to Size 1 diapers {because pretty much every dirty diaper is a blow out aka everything is stained}. He is getting better at using a pacifier, more to keep him asleep than to sooth him when he gets really upset. He has taken a couple of bottles from me and two from Mom!! 

Sitting up in the stroller is much better than the car seat! 

Onto the list of things we have used a lot these first few weeks.
  • Mustela Bebe Dermo-Cleansing (aka hand soap). It is the simple things. With a new baby and lots of dirty diapers, you wash your hands a lot. I use less than a dime-size amount because I don't want to run out. This stuff smells SO good. The scent should be called "newborn baby." 
  • Brest Friend nursing pillow. Everyone debates this pillow with the Boppy. I liked this one because it hooks around me and is a flat, more firm surface. {I use the Boppy more now that nursing is more established and the squiahiness of the pillow is more comfortable, but it does move around a lot which is why the Brest Friend worked better in the beginning}. 
  • aden + anais blankets. I used this on top of the nursing pillow and then am able to easily fold it under Harrison's head to prop it up or tuck it behind his back to minimize his squirming and pulling. At first I used a smaller burp cloth for this, but the bigger blanket has been more ideal recently. 
  • Diaper tote. I used this as a nursing station. It was especially essential in the early days. I used one side for my water, snacks, kindle, phone. The other side had everything else... burp cloths, lanolin oil, nursing pads, hand sanitizer, pacifier... 
The nursing pillow... In our fav nursing chair. 
Diaper tote used to hold all my nursing station stash (sometimes it also included my medicine organizer, TV remotes, magazines, phone, Chapstick)
  • Lanolin oil. I used this before and after each feeding. I also use a prescription all-purpose nipple cream for when things are worse. The prescription has restrictions on no feeding 30 minutes after application and no wiping off, which made it tricky during cluster feeds and growth spurts. The lanolin oil worked really well - no restrictions. 
  • Glow Baby app. I used this to keep track of all the details... when he last fed, which side, for how long, how many diapers did he have, etc. When we first got home there were too many things to keep track of that my tired brain couldn't handle it. Ryan downloaded this app and when he'd hand me Harrison to start feeding, he would start the timer for me. I'm sure there are other apps that so the same thing. The only thing annoying is always trying to track down my phone when I started feeding. 
  • "Happiest Baby on the Block" video by Dr. Karp. We watched this the week before Harrison was born. Knowing how to trigger his calming reflex was CRUCIAL. We still had to figure out exactly how to apply these techniques, and we each apply them differently to be effective, but this knowledge was HUGE.
  • SwaddleMe newborn swaddles. Even though we got pretty good at swaddling in blankets, the SwaddleMe's are faster and tighter. They are less bunchy and easier to use. 
  • Greco's sound machine. I didn't understand spending $35 on a sound machine when you can download noises on your phone. BUT this has several different sounds that aren't horrible static. And the blue night light is easy to turn on/off and not as bright as a dimmed lamp. We have the light and sound on all night long. I'm so glad that I got this as a gift, it's not something I would have bought myself! 
The sound machine & must see video by Dr. Karp. 
  • Medicine chart & organizer. This helped us keep track of when I took meds (pain meds, prenatal vitamin, antibiotcs, etc.) and having them in the tray so I didn't have to think about it. I would have loved for this to be in the Baby app I used. I ended up setting alarms for meds so I wouldn't get behind, which helped too.
  • Hospital supply items that I brought home and really used included.... water bottle with large straw, ice packs, mesh undies, mini lanolin oil tubes, "the" spray bottle, flushable wipes. {However, take anything they're willing to give you... diapers, wipes, petroleum jelly, gauze pads...}
  • Pumping accessories.... The Medela steam bags for easy sterilizing. The "grass" drying rack for pumping/bottle accessories. 
  • Some helpful online resources... kellymom ( , la leche ( - both mostly for breastfeeding info. Some comical relief from Pregnant Chicken ( - I get an email once a week that I like reading, titled "What the Cluck?" Lucie's List ( which has great product reviews {when comparing bottles, car seats, strollers, baby carriers, etc) and baby things. I also get an email from them that is specific to how many weeks postpartum I am and like reading it too {the emails are NOT about what products I should be buying/using}. 
I am definitely not a huge product person - mostly I don't want to spend the money and I don't have the space. I took the approach that less is more, and even still, there were things we got that haven't been used. I'm sure each baby is different, so who knows what will work in the future. 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

ONE month!

Harrison Joseph Wildenhain, born March 3, 2016 at 12:38am. 7 lb 15 oz. 21.75 inches long. Ryan was right by my side when Harrison was put on my chest as he let out a whimper cry with a small puckered mouth.

It is a strange feeling of time flying by but also working hard learning how to be his Mama through long nights and long days. So much has happened over the last month. He went from a sleepy newborn, learning how to nurse, barely opening his eyes to knowing exactly what he wants (his Mama and Mama's milk, straight from Mama herself). He has alert happy mornings, gets fussy between 7-9pm and during the night likes to sleep on Mama or Daddy's chest {which we are working on...}.

There are SO many, I mean how detailed should I get on these baby blog posts...? He had his first yellow, seedy poop on Sunday, March 4, which means Mama's milk had processed through completely. Ok, so maybe just some highlights, not every count of wet/dry diapers...? Maybe instead of milestones a little timeline will fit better here.

The first night home after the hospital was MISERABLE. We planned to be discharged early afternoon on 3/4. Somehow, we ended up finishing all our discharge checklist by 3/4:00, but weren't able to actually leave the hospital until after 7:00. Going into that first night, we didn't even know where the gauze pads and jelly were that we were supposed to change every diaper change. I was not ready to comfortably sit up and nurse when I'd only done it in the hospital bed with 5+ pillows propping us up. He cried so much and we hadn't figured out A N Y of his soothing cues yet. It was the W O R S T night ever. I cried A L L night.

March 5

Looking prettttty rough at Harrison's first Pediatrician appointment after our miserable night at home.

It got much better after we regrouped. Ryan went on a shopping spree for all the things we weren't prepared for to get us on track. On 3/5, at his newborn check up, he weighed 7 lb 6 oz. It is expected for newborns to lose weight after birth. So we went into the weekend knowing we had work to do to gain it back. On that Monday, 3/7, he weighed 7 lb 14.5 oz. In four days, he was almost back to his birth weight. Mom Victoryyy.

Over the next week, our babe was {slightly} more predictable. We didn't set an alarm for feeding every 3-4 hours and he was sleeping in the rock n' play by our bed. There were several days where my own body was the worst part. There are things people don't talk about, even on full disclosure blog posts, and I won't either. Just know, it is bad. I ended up having a pretty bad night about a week out {read - another night of crying}, went to my OB just in time to catch an infection, and got some meds to get back on the healing track. I can't believe they discharge you from the hospital and don't plan to see you for 6 weeks. There is A LOT of healing to do and it's hard to even know when something is not "normal". Your body is a mess. My midwife was great and reaffirmed that it was good that I came in when I did.

March 10
After 7-10 days, Harrison started having awake spells, usually in the mornings. I was feeling better, so Ryan and I were getting out to do somethings while he was off work. We went to Target. We sat outside Starbucks. Drove around looking at potential neighborhoods. Rearranged the bedroom {again}. Harrison enjoyed his first bath until we washed his hair and pulled him out of the tub. I panicked about not having newborn pictures done, so we got some newborn pictures done. He lost the pealing skin on his face and feet. Ryan and I both learned how to sooth him with Dr. Karp's calming techniques... he likes his left side, the bath water running, the microwave vent/fan, "shushing", swaddling in a tight SwaddleMe, swaying/rocking movement up and down, and sucking on my pinkie finger. It was really nice to have Ryan home for two weeks so we could figure out new parenthood together.

Time has started to blur and the following week is fuzzy. I was home by myself during the day and did a lot of nursing and holding a sleepy baby. It has been so great having my parents soooo close. {We are currently living with them, so VERY close}. My mom has been great with helping troubleshot growth spurts, fussy evenings and keeping us fed! When we move {hopefully this summer!}, grocery shopping and preparing meals on our own will be a big transition.

After his two week appointment {I only remember this day specifically because I'm not in sweats}.
March 17
The last week or so, Harrison has wanted to be in my arms 100% of the time. Nursing, some awake time and sleeping, in MY arms. At night he was only content sleeping on my or Ryan's chest. Exhausting. This went on for 4-5 days straight and was really starting to wear on me. It was ridiculous to not be able to get a shower or even brush my teeth in a whole day. I hated hearing him cry and cry when someone else is trying to sooth him, but I just needed a break when he didn't actually NEED me for milk. After his doctor's appointment, with a vaccine shot in his leg, he finally slept the night in his bouncer. Praise the Lord.

March 31 - Loving a warm sink bath

At one month Harrison is finally starting to take a paci on occasion, being introduced to a bottle {but not actually sucking at all}, is on the verge of giving us a smile, focuses on our faces, out of newborn clothes, turns his head when people are talking and sleeping/napping is touch-and-go. Everything we read is still no schedule, no pattern, and, "keep trying different things." He is a growing boy and we love him!

Yesterday, at his one month, he weighed in at 9 lb 11 oz and measured 21.75 inches long {I think they way over measured his length at the hospital so he's been working back up to his measured birth length}! He has outgrown his newborn clothes =( and three month clothes are already snug! Eeeep, we have some clothes to wear before he grows out of them!