Time is truly fleeting. Our dark-haired beauty is already a month old and becoming more and more curious about the world around her. She is working hard on earning that double chin and loves cuddling in the warmth of our arms (we don't mind one bit). As we continue on in the throws of newborn parenting: exhaustion, no set routine, learning all about this new tiny human, and still connecting with each other and Owen, I wanted to take some time to reflect and share some thoughts.
Labor and delivery this go-around was a dream. After having a hard labor with Owen, I found myself anxious throughout my pregnancy with Micah wondering what my next experience would be like. The day I went into labor, God gave rest to my anxious heart and allowed me to focus solely on the joy and expectation of meeting her. I wasn't fearful and I think that was a game changer. I knew relatively what was going to happen next in the birthing process and I leaned into my husband and doula for assurance and support. Yes, it was still painful and hard, but beautiful. I hope this can be encouraging to you expectant mamas!
These last few weeks, I have really enjoyed loving and caring for Micah. Despite reflux/stomach issues we are still working through (anyone else deal with this?), I have had the capacity to be fully present with her - and for this I am grateful. Our family and community has played a big role in allowing this by bringing us meals, playing with Owen, and holding or feeding Micah while I take a nap or a mental break. I encourage all new mamas to ask for help, even if it seems awkward, or if you long to be super-mom and do it by yourself. There's no weakness in letting others love on you.
Turning the corner with month one under our belt, there are several products that I have really enjoyed having with Micah and I'd love to share them with you!
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1. // 4Moms Mamaroo - This thing is amazing and makes us feel so fancy (hahah)! Our neighbors let us borrow theirs and it has been so helpful to use for sleeping and lounging, especially when I need a safe place to put her down when I tend to Owen. The rocking motions are very calming to her and the built in sound machine is great. It has a higher price tag than most rock n' plays, but I think it's a good investment.
2. // Lifefactory Bottles - These glass bottles come in 4oz and 9oz sizes with silicone sleeves that make it easy to hold. I love these because I don't have to worry about any health concerns with plastics and I also appreciate the modern design aesthetic. Lifefactory has made it so the baby bottle can transition with your baby as she grows - from a bottle, to a sippy cup, to a water bottle or snack container.
3. // Natursutten Pacifier - With Owen, we didn't use a pacifier, but Micah loves hers. I like this particular brand for a few different reasons: it's made out of natural rubber; free of artificial color, parabens, PVC and phthalates; and the shield is designed to touch the baby's nose to give the same secure feeling they would have during breastfeeding. The design of the pacifier makes it easy to clean (no cracks or crevices) too!
4. // Baby Brezza Formula Pro - To all the mamas out there who are exclusively formula feeding, this product is awesome and a time-saver! I refer to the Formula Pro as our formula "Keurig" - you place the bottle under the dispenser, select how many ounces you would like and press start. From there, it measures out the correct amount of formula and water for you as well as mixes it! Your bottle is ready to go in seconds, which is especially helpful during nighttime feedings. I wouldn't say this product is portable for travel, but it's great to have at home!
5. // Ollie Swaddle - The Ollie swaddle is very user friendly, and I love that. It has three velcro closures that keep Micah's arms from wriggling out (so far!) and a tie at the bottom that wraps around just under the feet. The swaddle is made out of a moisture-wicking material which gives me a peace of mind knowing that she will stay dry and free from sweat during the warmer months and will stay warm in the colder months without causing overheating. We've tried MANY different swaddles, and this have been my favorite.
Moms (and Dads!), what products did you love for your kiddos, especially during the newborn phase?
*all photos of Micah taken by the lovely Jess Shiflett.