Friday, April 18, 2014

4 Month Must Haves for Mommy and Baby

4 month mommy must haves

4 month mommy must haves by coachgaines featuring New Balance

Freezer Bags: I am just now at a point where I can start freezing a surplus of milk.  I'm actually using Target brand bags and they work fantastic in my Milkies freezer.

Sneakers: I just bought this pair and they are so comfy.  I love that they are bright and cheerful, too.

Tula: I can't say enough about this baby carrier.  It is so comfortable and easy to use.  Carson loves being worn and it lets me be hands-free around the house or out in public.  It is was a saving grace while traveling to New York.

Retro Metro foldover bag by Thirty-One: I bought this on a whim when my friend offered up her half-price deal.  Wow.  I am so pleased with it.  It is much bigger than the picture alludes to (in a good way) and has pockets on the outside and inside.  I was able to put wipes and bottles on the outside, my iPad and Kindle on the inside, and use it as my carry-on and diaper bag while in New York.  It is going to get soooo much use.

4 month must haves for baby

4 month must haves for baby by coachgaines on Polyvore

Lullaby CD: Music is the greatest pacifier for Carson.  If he starts fussing I just play some lullabies and he instantly soothes and becomes quiet or falls asleep.  I keep them in the car and at the house.

Short Creepers: It's starting to get hot in the south so these have been perfect.  They are easy to wash and are much more comfortable than sleepers in the warmer months.

Bibs with vinyl backing: Carson is starting to drool.  A lot.  These keep him semi-dry.  (Planning to purchase one of these and see how they help with the situation.)

Blanket:  We call this his "wubby" because our neighbor (also his sitter) gave it to him and that's what her grandchildren called their's.  He loves this.  Seriously, hangs onto it all day long and rubs it on his face.  I have a feeling this is going to be his personal favorite.

What are your 4 month must haves?

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Definition and Perception of Healthy

Most of you know I teach middle school and since we were all middle schoolers at one point we know how awkward and difficult that period of time can be.  It was brought to my attention recently that some of my middle school girls have been skipping lunch because they are "fat" and "need to lose weight."  (There words, not mine, not ever.)

This alarmed me and made me realize a few things:
1. The lack of health education our students are receiving is hurting them.
2.  My own body image plays a role in the body image of my students.
3.  Students need to be educated on the true definition of healthy, not the media's perception of it.

Now I know we all struggle with body image at some point in some way.  If not, go you!  I wish I could say the same.  I just feel like we are doing our youth a huge disservice not educating them on the definition of healthy vs. the perception of health.

Skinny does not = Healthy

We all (myself included) have this idea that to be skinny means health.  That is so not the case, particularly when young girls are skipping a meal to be thin.  So, I'm doing my best to infiltrate as much literature and information about health into my lessons for the last 9 weeks of school.  It hurts my heart to think that these girls don't value themselves and are aiming for the media's portrayal of beauty.

There are so many things we can do to be healthier and none of them include skipping meals.

I guarantee you are more influential in the life of a young woman than you realize.  Please, be careful what you say and do in front of them.  When they see us judging ourselves and struggling with our own body image, they learn to do the same.  When they see us stepping on the scale, they worship the number that floats to the top.  We are way more influential than we realize.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Top: OldNavy, Scarf: SamMoon, Pants: Joe Fresh for JCPenney, RayBans, Bracelets: Alex & Ani

Ever since I decorated CT's nursery in elephants I find myself loving them.  Suddenly it was really important that I get an elephant scarf and when I saw this one, I couldn't help myself.  It was in my cart and headed to my door within minutes.

My Papa collected elephants and growing up he would let me get all the elephants out of the armoir in the living room to play with them.  They were really delicate and it always made me feel special to get to play with them.  There were elephants made of marble, rock, glass, jade, and wood.  I lined them up and paraded them around the coffee table.

I'm not sure why or how Papa started collecting the elephants.  He and Mimi traveled quite a bit and I think he picked up elephants along the way.  When he passed away Mimi let us each choose a few to keep.  When it came time to decorate the nursery I knew I wanted it to be a compilation of sentimental pieces so I decided to choose the decor around 2 elephants I chose.

Is there an animal print you love?

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Things People Don't Tell You: Back to Work After Baby

I decided to write a mini-series titled Things People Don't Tell You because there are so many things that people don't tell you in regard to pregnancy, parenthood, etc.  In fact, Pinterest and blogs and social media make it all look so easy and glamorous and natural.  And a lot of it is, but a lot of it isn't.

So, I'm willing to be honest and open and share the things that people don't tell you in regards to pregnancy, delivery, bringing home a baby, breastfeeding, etc.
You can see my previous posts here and here

If you have questions or suggestions for future topics, please email me.  I'm happy to share!

Going back to work is hard.  But, honestly, the build-up to going back to work is even harder.
I wish someone would have told me that all the worrying I was doing and stressing over how I would cope with going back to work was actually the worst part of doing it.  (In retrospect I think my mom did tell me, but I didn't get it until I actually went through it.)

These are the things you can do to make going back to work easier...

Practice waking up in the morning and getting ready (even if you have nowhere to go) for at least a week in advance.  Getting into a routine before it is mandatory helps work out kinks.

Visit the daycare center/sitter several times with the baby before you go back to work.  Observe how things are done in that environment and how they change/feed/etc. your child.

If possible do a few days or half-days of daycare a week or two before going back to help emotionally prepare you for being away from the baby for an extended time.

Give yourself approximately 15 minutes of lee-way.  Some days you might end up with 15 extra minutes and some days you may need those minutes to change a dirty diaper or an entire outfit after a blow-out.

Prep as much as possible the night before: make the coffee, make the bottles, pack lunch, pack the diaper bag, fill your water bottle, etc.

If you are breastfeeding discuss with your employer your physical needs.  (All employers are required to provide time for you to do this).  Locate a comfortable place in your building where you can go to pump as often as necessary.

Frame a picture, create a travel photo mug, or keep your phone on hand so you can look at pictures of your little one throughout the day.  This helps milk come in when pumping away from home and keeps you happy.

Remind yourself that you are doing this so that you have extra money to buy and do fun things for baby.  It is nice to have the extra.  Acknowledge the fact that you are doing something difficult (and give yourself some grace). Being a working mom is no easy task; you are fulfilling work duties, mommy duties, wifely duties, etc. on a daily basis.  You are a supermom.

Purchase a few new articles of clothing/accessories/shoes to wear to work.  Having some fun new pieces in your closet can make you feel more comfortable and confident in your post-partum body.  It also makes getting ready in the morning more fun.

Purchase items that will make pumping more convenient: a mini fridge to keep your milk cold, a hand pump (I keep this in the car in the event that I forget my pump at home or leave the building without it), a backpack pump to make carrying easier, bottles and lids for storage, and the hands-free pumping bra so you can still get work done while pumping at your desk.

pumping conveniences

Friday, April 11, 2014

What's in my Carry-On

This weekend CT and I are flying home to visit my family.  I'm so excited to introduce him to aunts, uncles, cousins, great-aunts, etc.  A week full of mountains, sap boiling, maple syrup tasting is about to commence.  We couldn't be more excited to see Grandma, Grandpa, and Uncle Poo.

Here is what is in my carry-on for the trip...
my carry-on

Any flying advice?

Thursday, April 10, 2014


I have this burning desire to remember each moment in time.
My sentimental heart is beating out of my chest,
each little milestone we witness with Ct,
his smell, the way he feels in my arms.

I want it all, forever.


Listening to lullabies on repeat.
Reading Insurgent and struggling to get into it.
Making milk.  Like a boss.
Wearing my TOMs with everything.
Sewing burp cloths for the drool monster.
Running a 13 minute mile with the stroller.
Waiting impatiently for spring break.
Wishing time would slow down.
Singing "Happy" by Pharell Williams in my head.
Learning to ignore unsolicited opinions about parenting.
Working on National Boards any chance I get.
Feeling excited for spring break.
Playing with squeaky toys in the bathtub.
Shopping for the perfect swimsuit.
Drinking water like its my job.

What are you up to?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Fire Engine Pants

Sweater: Ann Taylor Outlet, Pants: Joe Fresh via JCPenney, TOMs, RayBans
Before going back to work I dropped CT off for a half day with the sitter and went shopping.  I wanted to get a few pair of pants I felt comfortable in and that reflected my personal style.  Even though I'm not back into all my pre-pregnancy clothes, I still want to be true to myself and my fashion.

So, I hit up JCPenney's Joe Fresh line and became even more obsessed than I already was.  I got these pants and a pair in green and I want more.  I'm a sucker for bright colors.  Here are a few more items from the line that are on my wish list...

joe fresh

What do you love?

Linking up with Shanna, Liz, & Lindsey