Sunday, September 22, 2013

Being Featured!

Sounds cool eh?!  Well it made me fluff my feathers with pride ;)

I'm excited to share that one of my go to sources for paint colors, featured the Little Miss' nursery on Friday.

Hop on over and check it out and go see all the amazing rooms she has showcased.  It is an awesome way to see paint colors in action in a normal room.  Her home blog is also amazing.  Check out the link for the incredible before and afters of her house.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Nursing Through Pregnancy

When I first found out I was pregnant in December one of my first thoughts was about Sammy nursing.  He was 14 months at the time and was still nursing 5-6x a day.  I began doing some research on nursing during pregnancy and not only came up short but also full of conflicting information.  There were obvious biases on and the towards it being safe and then of course less breastfeeding friendly sites were on the cautious side and told you to wean.  I fortunately knew a few women who had successfully nursed during pregnancy and their encouragement as well as their healthy thriving children gave me the courage to continue on with my goal of allowing Sammy to self wean.

Had Sammy been knocking out his nursing sessions like other toddlers his age I may have just encouraged weaning, however he was still nursing as much as he did at 8 months and clearly needed the comfort and nutrition.  Just like with bottles as a young infant, he was not interested in milk from any other source aside from straight from the tap.  This trend continues to this day.  I'm now 4 weeks post partum and Sammy is 23 months old.  As you can see Sammy loves dem boobies ;)

 During the first trimester there didn't seem to be any change for me in continuing nursing so on we went.  However, almost immediately into my fourth or fifth month of pregnancy, nursing became incredibly uncomfortable almost to the point of what it felt like to nurse a newborn who didn't know how to latch onto breasts that had no idea what they were doing.  I would literally count to get my mind off of the pain.  It was horrible, especially because it was my body's doing and had nothing to do with Sammy.  I had to start cutting his nursing sessions short.  In a way I wonder if this was my body's way of making sure I allowed my pregnancy to continue without harm (My OBs concern was that my toddler would be taking away the nutrition my pregnancy needed).

All of a sudden around month 7, in the midst of counting and using the length of a song to get through a nursing session with Sammy the pain just went away.  I started to feel like Sammy wasn't dry nursing anymore and could hear him swallowing vs just suckling.  I also was able to hand express to see what was up and while the milk coming out wasn't cream in color (it was more clear) it was there and easy to produce.  I didn't ever have colostrum leak when I was pregnant with Sammy, so I'm not sure if that is what it was.   I showed the lactation consultant in the hospital a few hours after I had given birth to Lexi and she called it transitional milk.  I have no idea exactly what that means, but it wasn't my full milk and wasn't colostrum either.

One of the few pictures of us nursing.  Side lying ended up being the most comfortable position once I was pregnant.  Bailey likes to get in on the morning snuggles too.  And don't worry, I'm wearing shorts, they just are short and my belly as you can see was HUGE.
A few benefits to nursing during pregnancy were the ample amount of times I was able to sit still with a toddler.  I honestly don't know if I could have survived pregnancy without the "downtime" of nursing.  It gave me an extra 20 minutes in bed in the morning with Sammy, as well as anytime I needed to rest I was able to just ask him if he wanted to nurse.  Normally the answer was yes. Nursing through pregnancy also without a doubt made the transition for Sammy from only child to first child easier.  He understands without having to be explained what the Baby is doing.   It also made breastfeeding a newborn again one billion times easier.  I was insanely shocked.  Even the hospital lactation consultant couldn't believe how great my nipples looked for having had a newborn latching on for several hours.  I haven't had any pain whatsoever this time.  I was dreading it and am so glad I was spared.  I also think the engorgement process didn't last as long as my breasts are already set to regulating a supply.

Also, shockingly, Sammy started to really wean once the baby came home.   I'm not sure if it was because I spent two days away from him in the hospital or because he saw the baby nursing from me, or the taste, or it was finally time for him or a combination.  Either way, he went from nursing 3x (morning, nap, and bedtime) to 2x a day (morning, nap), then 1x  (morning) all withing a week of being home.  It was a very welcome change!  I had been wanting to stop the bedtime nursing session for a while just because I was so tired by that time of night.  Over the last few weeks, he'll occasionally ask to nurse before his nap or bedtime or at odd times like during a playdate (hi Steph).  Normally as long as his sister has just nursed I'll let him get some leftovers.  Otherwise he waits. 

I hope this information helps other women in the same situation.  If you have a normal healthy pregnancy, trust your body and your gut.  If your child is ready to wean, pregnancy is as good a time as ever since it can at times be very hard.  If your child is showing no signs of wanting to wean and is old enough to get nutrition from other sources, keep on trucking on.

Friday, September 6, 2013

A Beach and Bailey (doggie) Nursery for Sweet Baby Sammy

So this post really cracks me up.   When I was writing up the post for the Little Miss' nursery, and wanted to link back to Sammy's I realized I actually never took pictures of Sammy's room once it was complete!  I honestly can't believe I'm two years late in posting these pictures.  That's one for the record books.  

So without further ado, here is the reveal for Sammy's nursery.

The Dali Decal I had designed and the beach and Bailey print we purchased in cape may long before Sammy was even a poppy seed in my belly.  He loves pointing out Bailey every morning.
These three Ikea shelves were a last minute edition.  I love them!  They hold so much art.  Sammy loves having pictures of his family in his room too.
A few closeups.  The big silver frame is from PBK and was an awesome baby shower gift from my Paul's brother and wife. We love it so much, we bought one for the Little Miss' nursery too.
Another wonderful PBK gift from a dear friend for Sammy's dedication.  She even took the picture of him too!

An empty frame still left to fill and a cute shot from our maternity session

The target bookshelf was the last thing we added to his room.  We accumulated a lot of well loved books over the first year and a half of Sammy's life, so this was a needed last edition.  For $80 it looks great too!
I love this shadow box I bought at homegoods.  It holds Sammy's coming home outfit and hat, his footprints from the hospital, his hospital id bracelet and his birth announcement.  I wish I had a matching pink one for his sister's room.
I actually lied, these starfish plaques were the last thing we purchased for Sammy's room.  We got them during our OBX trip this past May.
Paul's mom received an old rocking chair from the church nursery and gifted it to Sammy last summer.  He loved it, even at 9 months, so I refinished it with a quick sanding and spray paint and put it in his room.

So, two years later, the new big brother finally has his nursery revealed.  I hope he continues to love his room and crib for quite a while!

Summer Mantel and Decor 2013

I figured I'd squeak in one more summer post before I down any more PSLs and enjoy anymore fallish weather.  

Here are a few pictures of our Summer 2013 mantel.  Lots of starfish, sea glass, sand and shells from beach vacations.  A lot of the shells are from our trip last year to Marco Island.

Hope you liked our simple summery decor.  Hopefully I'll post our fall mantel before NYE 2013.

2013 Spring and Summer Flowers

Seasonably appropiate and fashionably late post as always.  At least I'm dependable. 

Fresh Cut Flowers from whole foods fair lakes.  Freshest and cheapest I can find in the area.  This is a $10 bouquet 
I love, love, love, love flowers!  They make me so happy.  I've posted a few times about my love for gardening see here and here.  This years flowers made me even happier because they were planted after the coldest dreariest winter ever.  They were also cheap!  For the Front, Back Deck and Patio we purchased all clearance flowers from lowes and then the $4 for $10 white buckets from home depot that I split up into containers. 

The flowers below in my favorite christmas tree shop planters were the first I planted in late March and were purchased at Merrifield Gardens using a 50% off Groupon.  Since it was so cold out, the plants that were for sale were cool weather flowers which meant that while they were an awesome first pop of color right outside our kitchen, a lot of the blooms don't look so great now that it is September. 
This is what the flowers look like now in late summer

We always buy a bag of bulbs in the fall from costco.  Each spring, they are always such an awesome surprise in the front of the house.  Putting this post together 5 months later just amazes me.  I can't believe how much Sammy has changed!  Also, I had a baby girl  in my belly girl in who is now happily sleeping next to me!  

These are the $4 for $10 plants from home depot.  They are a great buy and great for containers.  I planted all these into 8 baskets and containers.

Here are the clearance flowers from lowes in the front as well as a shot of our crepe myrtle.

Lowes clearance flowers on back deck.  I love the hanging vines.  The limey color is so vibrant and the way it falls off the container makes me think of green dread lock plant hair.

Hope you enjoyed the last pop of summer color from our outdoor spaces we love.