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Preschool Favorites + Meet the Teacher

Parker and Jolie are just days away from embarking on the next big milestone in their two and a half years of life.. 
p r e s c h o o l.
They have never been in any kind of program outside of the home aside from Sunday morning kids church and right now would be the perfect transition to getting them into some sort of structure after their world has more or less been turned upside down with the introduction of Baker into the family.  
I am SO excited for them to be starting this 'new adventure'.. even if its just two days a week.  I have been preparing them and myself (physically and mentally) for their first day and have rounded up a few of my favorite preschool things.

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 //
These Itzy Ritzy wet bags have been a favorite this summer- we have one in our pool bag for wet bathing suits and one in my diaper bag just in case theres a baby blow out.  I put one of these filled with a change of clothes and extra panties in each of P+J's backpacks // I was first introduced to these smart planet silicone lunch boxes via Jen and after reading her recommendation of them, I placed a quick order on Amazon (less than $15/each) to see what I thought.  When they arrived a few days later I fell in love.  So easy to use and perfect size compartments for Parker and Jolie's lunch.  As badly as I wanted to try these fun lunch boxes out, I couldn't bring myself to spend that much on not just one, but two lunch boxes // Our preschool program still encourages nap time for the older 2 year old class and I liked this mat because it has a larger blanket and a pillow all wrapped into one mat // nothing is cuter than these backpacks.  They were on the twins' christmas wishlist and have been patiently awaiting their use for this fall // We've used these labels since the twins were born (got them as a baby shower gift) and LOVE them.  We started using them on their bottles and then transferred them to their sippy cups once they got older.  These labels are dishwasher friendly, and after 2.5 years of wear and tear, they are still in excellent condition - not even so much as a fade in color.  I also got a few of these monogram adhesive labels for other items that need tags as well. 
Last night was 'meet the teacher' at our preschool and as stressful as it could have been - it wasn't at all once we arrived.  I was more stressed out because I wasn't exactly sure what to expect at all. Parker and Jolie's teachers are absolutely darling and the girls walked right into the classroom (Farm Friends), shook their hands and sat down to start playing like they owned the place.  We got to meet a few of the other parents as well - this year is going to so much fun!   

School starts next Tuesday at 9am.
..I also signed up to be 'room mom'.  
This is happening:)


Day in the Life

..with 3 under 3.  My life is a revolving door right now and while we aren't officially on a schedule with a 6 week old babe, we've managed to maintain a semi-normal routine simply because our regular day to day activities with the twins must go on.  To be completely transparent, this day in the life has only really been true for probably the last couple weeks or so.  I mentioned in yesterday's post how impressive full-time stay at home moms are.  It basically took me four weeks to figure out that I needed to actually make a plan for the day or else I would get NOTHING done.  I am notoriously a list-maker, so why it took me that long is beyond me.  Lately we have been filling our day with playdates + errands, going to the park (when its cool enough) and bringing out 'rainy day' toys and puzzles I've stashed away on a random Tuesday afternoon when I am basically out of ideas.  I feel like we have finally hit our groove and are in a really good place.  Having 'plans' helps me get out of bed and moving- or I would just assume sleep the morning away with miss Baker because, hello.. we are all tired.  So, this is pretty much how our days go during the week.

6:00-7:00am -- Baker wakes to eat.  She eats really well during this morning nursing session and will often go back to sleep right away- letting me get another hour or so before the twins wake up.  The morning is when she does her best sleep- and I am usually waking her to eat again by 10:30am.

7:30am-8:00am -- Parker and Jolie are awake at this point.  They used to come in and wake us first thing in the morning, but will now find something to play with (usually their play kitchen or puzzles).  We recently bought a picnic table to go in the play room and those two will sit and play by themselves for what seems like forever.  It doesn't take long before I hear them playing together and I am up and out of bed.  Once they know I am awake- they follow me around like little ducklings.  Even to the bathroom.  I never ever thought twice about the luxury of peeing by myself before I had kids.  The last time I did one of these posts (almost a year ago!) there is a picture nearly identical to this one.. some things just don't change:)
8:30am-9:00am -- On most days I shower before bed, but sometimes if I am able I'll shower in the morning.  "You get ready to go in twenty minutes, mama?" Everything is in 'twenty minutes' with Parker and Jolie these days.  I set them up in my bed with a smoothie and dry cereal (move Baker to her rocker next to my bed..) and hop in for a quick shower.
9:00am -- Out of the shower and I'm dying for a cup of coffee!  I craved coffee during my last trimester of pregnancy and it has carried over to postpartum.  If I don't shower in the morning, coffee is the first item to check off my list for the day.
#girlmom tee // emerald sky
9:15am-9:30am -- breakfast + morning chores.  While I make my coffee and breakfast, I usually unload the dishwasher and get the house ready for the day (dishes, laundry, meal prep for dinner).
Jesus coffee mug // linen + lace shop
Breakfast for me these days is usually peanut butter + banana toast.  I think about it at 2am when I nurse Baker.. thats how much I'm loving it right now.  I also have a habit of eating the same thing for months and months and then never eating it again.  If its not PBB toast I'll eat a bowl of multi-grain Cheerios or oatmeal - wishing the entire time I would have eaten the toast.  Thats what second breakfasts are for, yes?
I always have helpers when I unload the dishwasher.. I think she takes the opportunity to steal some of the cooking utensils to play with.  For whatever reason, the girls l o v e to play in the empty bathtub while I get ready.  Fine by me- keeps them out of trouble and contained:)
9:30am-10:30am -- getting ready.  I blow dry and fix my hair.. and on this day we made plans to meet up with Auntie, so I did a quick version of my makeup routine (i.e. concealer + blush + bronzer + lip gloss) to look presentable.  I don't put it on if we are staying home.  Hair and dress for the twin babes also happens during this time and I haven't quite mastered getting out of the house on time with the girls after doing my hair AND my full makeup.  I'll get there.  Just not today:)
10:30am -- nurse.  I wake Baker to change her diaper, get her dressed and to feed a very hungry girl.  Parker and Jolie stand at the changing table to 'help' me, so it always take a little longer, but its all worth it to make them feel included in all things that have to do with her.

11:15am -- and we are off!  I usually like to be out of the house between 10am and 11am mainly because if we are planning to have any kind of nap that day, I need to be home by 1:30pm for the girls to go down and it not infringe on their nighttime routine.  We can miss nap here and there and it not result in total meltdowns at 5pm, but for the most part we try and limit being out of the house during their typical nap time (between 1pm-4pm).  On those days we are out and about - Jolie will usually cat nap in the car between errands.  Parker is notorious for falling asleep 3 minutes from pulling into the driveway.

We made a couple stops: fill up gas, post office, and then to grab lunch before meeting Auntie.
12:00pm-4:00pm -- playdates + errands. On days when we 'don't nap' we will make a day of it and run what feels like a bazillion errands and usually stop to play or do something fun for the twins at some point.  Typical: lunch, Sams/Costco, Target (<<duh), Barnes and Noble..they have a train table in the children's section - P+J love playing and reading the books..and there is a Starbucks for mama.)  There are several churches in our area that have indoor playscapes that we have been taking advantage of during this summer heat.  It wouldn't be so bad for the twins, but having Baker outside isn't an option unless we can get out before 9am when it isn't sweltering.  We have gone to the splash pad or the pool around that time of the morning.

The Ark in Coppell has an area with tables so we could eat lunch before the girls took off to play.  Lots of other moms had the same idea:)
While the twins ran and played their little hearts out, me, Auntie, Baker and Baby Grayson spent some time catching up.  That girl loves her Auntie.  She was chatting and flirting all over the place!  She's pretty laid back as long as she isn't hungry:)
1:00pm-4:00pm (if we are at HOME) -- Usually when the twins nap, I try to get Baker to take a nap as well.  Even though we aren't on a regular schedule, the afternoon tends to be more structured for her simply because her sisters have a pretty solid afternoon/evening routine.  I still feed her 'on demand' but it is consistently every 3 hours, so I kind of know what to expect as the day goes on.

If Baker is able to sleep at all during 1pm-4pm nap time, this is usually when I'll do laundry, answer emails, and straighten up the house.  The twins are a constant tornado of energy and while I once was able to walk behind them picking things up as they went, since Baker's arrival, I just don't have enough hands to do so.  SO- it stays a shambles until nap time and again until the girls go to bed for the evening.
4:00-5:00pm -- snacks + play.  My straight house is a mess again.  It takes them NO time to undo all my putting away. Toys.Books.Puzzles.Everywhere.  Playtime is usually combined with a snack (right at 4pm) and sometimes a movie if we had a busy morning and the twins are ready to be awake yet.  Afternoon is also when Baker spends some time on her tummy.  This is new for us.. I waited to start tummy time until she was a month old.  Parker kept saying "Hi sugar!" When Baker has the stimulus of her sisters' company, she will lay on her tummy for longer than if she is doing without them.
5:30pm-6:00pm -- bathtime!  We don't take baths every night but when we do (about every other day) it is always of request to have a bubble bath.  I had just fed Baker and while she normally would be content in her bouncy seat while I bathed her sisters, she insisted on being held.  I had plans to bathe her after the twins went to bed anyway, so I just stuck her in there, too:)
6:15pm -- Post bath squeaky clean babe.  She loves to sleep on her tummy.  After the last nursing session of the late afternoon (between 6:00pm-7:00pm) she will sleep through the rest of the early evening.
6:15pm-7:15pm -- dinnertime!  I like to give a bath before dinner time mainly because we have been eating a little later than normal due to the summer hours of light.  Before Baker was born we were sometimes staying at the pool until 6:30pm!  In order not to feel completely rushed after dinner due to an impending bedtime, we've been doing bath before.  Usually we eat together as a family, but Daddy was at the fire station, so is was Annie's mac and cheese, watermelon + grapes, and Bubble Guppies instead.
7:30pm-8:00pm -- wind down. 'Chocolate milk' (1/2 packet carnation instant breakfast mixed in skim milk) and one more toddler show before bed.  Lately its been Peppa Pig or Mickey Mouse.

8:00pm-8:30pm -- bedtime for Parker and Jolie.  If Jordan is home he will rock them in the rocking chair in their room while they sing worship music in the dark OR read a book.. but 9 times out of 10 P+J will choose the music. If it just mama, I'll snuggle them in their beds and chat about the day.  Jo usually stays on topic and tells me all about her day - even when we have spent every moment together..
Please excuse my looking like a 12 year old, makeup-less face:)
..while Parker is just all over the place!  Last night she was talking about something (I couldn't make out what) blowing away and BB putting in her car so it wouldn't blow away - and then her story quickly turned to something about Bubble Guppies and then asking for more chocolate milk.  I just nod and go with it.  She does all the talking.
8:30pm-11:30pm -- dinner/tv/shower/blogging.  Occasionally Jordan and I will wait until the twins are down for the night before eating dinner, but when Jordan is at the fire station, I almost always eat after the girls go to bed.  This is also the time for the hubby and me to catch up on our DVR shows.  That is sort of our thing to do.. Bachelor in Paradise, anyone?  We have approximately 43 shows we love to watch together.  Before Baker was born I was one to wake up early, before the rest of my house, and do my quiet time + spend some time blog planning + blogging.  In this stage of life that just won't happen.  Blogging at night or in the late morning if we don't have plans is the easiest.. and my quiet time (right now I am following the She Reads Truth study: This is the Gospel) is whenever I can get to reading it that day.  I am sure once I go back to work and get into that daily routine again, it will be easier for me to be up earlier - but until baby girl is sleeping through the night and we have a better schedule I'll be fine to 'work' at night.
Our bed time is all over the place right now, so its almost easier for me to stay awake until its time to feed Baker again between 10:30pm-11:30pm (whenever she tends to stir and wake hungry.)  After I feed her I swaddle her up and lay her in the rocker next to my side of the bed.  Sometimes she will sleep for an hour and be up again to eat and other times she will sleep through until 3am before she wakes to eat again.

Writing it all out like this makes me realize how busy we are when I actually make plans.  I am probably just catching up from the lack of doing anything during the early weeks:)  I havent done one of these details posts since last September, and looking back it is crazy how much has changed.  I mean.. my big girls were SO little, just weeks into being potty trained and although I don't feel like things have changed all that much, it really has!

I know eventually we will get back to some normalcy, but right now, this is our normal.



Soaking up the Sweet Mess

Halfway through the week and I feel like my days are running together.  
I'll tell you what.. being a full-time stay at home mom right now has been amazing - but you ladies that really do this SAHM gig all the time -- and do it so well -- are a different breed of women.  You ladies are r o c k s t a r s.  The days of being at home with my girls have bene amazing.  Totally amazing.  But the moments when you want to pull your hair out because a couple of toddlers are jumping on the couch and you have said over and over to STOP jumping on the couch.  But since you are feeding a baby -- and they know it -- they both laugh.  In your face.
I'm telling you.  They smell the frustration.

But then again - waking up to sleepy snuggles every single morning.  Spending quality time with my people all the time.  Going to Target to shop the $1 bins whenever I want (you do it, too) -- I would love that.
Trying to soak up all this sweetness -- or sweet mess that life seems to be right now.  These last 6 weeks have slipped by in a blink and I have 6 weeks left before going back to work.  It is messy and some days I feel like we have sat in front of the tv for too many hours and some days when I am solo for 24+ hours I find myself texting Jordan to tell him that 'I'm a bad mom because..' only to have him remind me that I am not a bad mom.  
But truthfully most days, even the messy ones, are absolutely amazing.

Anyway- a few of my random thoughts for you on this Wednesday.
Most of which occur during the wee hours of the morning and most of which are also mindless.
A mind mess, if you will.
 ..and just because she's so darn cute..
  Good gracious.  The double chins.  Never looked so good!
I hope you are having a great week!



Baker's First | Big Sister Bottle

Another first in the books for our baby girl.  Over the weekend Baker hit 6 week old - I feel like time is such a thief.  ALL of my girls are growing like little weeds and I cant help but just sit and admire them as I notice new things about them almost on a daly basis.  Jolie was sitting in my lap last night and I was playing with her bleachy blonde hair -- which is halfway down her back these days -- and she said, "Hey like playing with my hair?" I sure do.. Since when did conversations with my toddler get to be this causal?  Its amazing how fast Parker and Jolie have grown up in the last 6 weeks since bringing Baker to this world.  All this growing up has made for a couple of pretty awesome helpers around the house.  They are always eager to be involved.. they stand on their bathroom stool at the changing table to 'help' change her diapers, bring me her Wubby when she is fussy, and help me burp her after she eats.  Before Baker was born I knew I wanted to include them in every which way I could and in pleasing my mama heart, when it came down to big sister responsibilities, these two

Breastfeeding this time around has been much different than how it went with the twins.  I was very successful in nursing my two babies for 13 months - but it took a ton of work.  The first 8 weeks were exhausting.  I was feeding around the clock, and when I wasn't nursing them, I was pumping in order to make my body aware that I needed more milk - enough to feed two hungry littles.  Thankfully it figured it out and I was able to stop pumping after every single feeding before going back to work.
With Baker, my milk came in on day 2 and I was in so much pain.  My body was reminded of the last time I produced milk and was producing enough milk for two babies. Even after Baker would nurse for 30 minutes I still felt like she wouldn't make a dent in the milk that was left in my breast.  I was icing my boobs (yes, you read that correctly) as well as pumping for relief after she ate.  I had to do this after most feedings while I was in the hospital and ended up coming come with over 20 ounces of milk to store in the freezer.  This carried on for the first week after we were home, and finally my body figured out that I was in fact only feeding one baby.  Since Baker was about 2 weeks old, I started pumping here and there- usually first thing in the morning for about 20 minutes and before I go to bed for 20 minutes.  During that time I get anywhere between 3.5 ounces to 6 ounces, depending upon how long Baker decided to nurse.  Much less stressful and definitely not as time consuming than what I had to do with Parker and Jolie.
I waited until Baker was 5 weeks old before offering her a bottle - mainly because I didn't want there to be any kind of confusion, even though she and I made a connection very quickly.  My concern with all that was low, but I also hadn't had a need to offer her a bottle yet.  While Baker is a fairly easy going babe, we deal with gas a lot.  My let down can be pretty aggressive, so she pulls off several times to catch her breath and in turn ends up sucking down a lot of air.  Not every feeding is like this, but at least once a day we battle a 'tummy ache' due to gas pains and she will burp for at least an hour after eating.  I was worried how well she would do taking a bottle for this reason alone.  
After an exhausting three days of cluster feedings during the day and into the night (hello, 6 week grow spurt - please don't stay long) Jordan offered to feed her a bottle at the 3am feeding.  It is outrageous how refreshing it is to get 6 solid hours of consistent sleep.  I was feeling great, she was sleeping great, and Jordan was getting to spend some one on one bonding time with his newest daughter.
When I was pregnant three years ago, I had heard of the Dr. Brown's bottle - all the parts seemed like a ton of work when I had two of everything to wash, dry, and store.  So - we tried a different bottle with the twins that worked just fine.  When I started to recognize Baker's issues with gas and sucking down too much air, I started to look into the different bottles we could try out that would alleviate this issue - not only now for practice while I am on maternity leave, but definitely to get a head start for when I go back to work and she's having to take at least two bottles while I am away.  Enter in the Dr. Brown's newest release: the Options Bottle.  This particular bottle is designed to grow with your baby and to be used with or without the vent system, not to mention a vent system with much fewer parts than the original bottles by Dr. Brown's.  Just what I was looking for - a bottle with little assembly required, but with promises that it won't exacerbate my girl's gassy issues (as well as any issues of colic + spit-up).  Once she is older and past the slower-paced feedings (and hopefully has grown out of sucking in too much air when she eats) I have the option (get it?) of using the bottle without the vent and using the paced nipple flow alone.  After three successful practice bottles with her daddy (and basically zero gas), we decided have the girls feed their littlest sister for the first time - and, you guys.  YOU GUYS.  I basically cried my postpartum heart out.  How long can I use this 'postpartum' excuse without looking like a train wreck and crying tears of joy at every single interaction between the three of them. 
I feel like I am approaching the end of that road, yes?   
Probably.  Just give me a few more weeks.

 I've never seen my girls so proud to be big sisters.  When I mentioned feeding Baker Baby they both were jumping up and down in excitement.  I'm telling you- every inch of this little girl is loved by these two.  Their real life baby doll.  Would you believe me if I told her that they have named three of their babies "Baker"?  They sure have.
 THIS.  I was so glad to watch this be such an easy experience for both Baker and the twins to help with.  Zero fussiness at the nipple, zero choking/coughing or pulling away from the bottle.  I had yet to witness Baker taking a bottle because Jordan has done it at 3am this last week while I was basking in perfect slumber - so while this whole bottle feeding thing was new to Parker and Jolie, it was new to me, too!

 Whether your new babe is experiencing feeding challenges or not - this bottle would be a great option to try.  It is such a relief when I am able to be confident in choosing whats best for Baker.
I know this will be an uphill battle for most of her baby life, but the best bottle for Baker is officially checked off the list!  
options bottle c/o dr. browns
boppy cover / little moose
pinstripe overalls / old navy (similar)
polka dot hair clip c/o zozubaby
leather knot headband c/o jb handmades
baby halter c/o golden hill designs
beach shorties / lulu + roo


WE EAT | Crock Pot Pork Verde + Roasted Sweet Potato Tacos

This meal made me proud.  Proud that I am finally getting back into the kitchen on a regular basis..but I might be a little embarrassed to admit how easy it was to throw together.  Dinner is dinner, yes?  The oohs and ahhs at the dinner table would have had you thinking that I put in the hard work to make this meal as delicious as it came to be.. but  My secret ingredient: store bought salsa.
Yes friends. My secret to cooking the meal that earned household praise from husband and toddlers alike is a jar of green salsa.  I had you all fooled by the fancy name Pork Verdedidn't I?  It sounds time consuming with a bajillion ingredients, but honestly, it’s so simple and the results are so fantastic. Ready for the step by step?
Dump, stir, start.
I had seen a recipe via Pinterest for a pork + butternut squash taco..but it felt like a crime to use butternut squash in August so I modified this idea to use sweet potato instead.  Plus.. my grocery wanted a small fortune for the single mediocre looking b'nut squash they had.

 I cannot express how grateful I am for recipes like these in times like this.  I served this with my favorite recipe for pico de gallo and a sprinkle of mozzarella cheese -- although feta or queso fresco would be equally delicious.  
3.5 pounds pork tenderloin
1 (24oz) bottle salsa verde (I used Herdez brand)
3 cups peeled + cubed sweet potatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
 2 teaspoons garlic salt
pico de gallo (store bought or homemade) 
shredded mozzarella cheese
lime juice
taco size tortillas (we use the corn/wheat blend by Mission brand)
for the pork: arrange your pork tenderloin in the bottom of your slow cooker.  Pour the salsa verde evenly over pork.  Cook on LOW for 8 hours.  Remove pork from the slow cooker and shred with two forks OR rough chop.
for the potatoes: preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Arrange the cubed sweet potatoes on a large foil lined rimmed baking sheet.  Drizzle with olive oil and season with paprika and garlic salt.  Bake for 30 minutes, or until tender.
Assemble the tacos over corn or flour tortillas; pork and potatoes + topping with desired cheese, pico, and lime juice to taste!
Completely ridiculous.  
Ridiculous in flavor + ridiculous is how easy this was to throw together.
..and look how pretty!
This pork recipe can be transformed into a million different ways.  We like the heat in this house, so I went with a salsa that had some kick to it, but feel free to adjust to your liking.  You could serve as I have described, but also over rice/quinoa/farro with sour cream and guacamole.  With only 5 minutes of prep time, this is going into our regular rotation -- so perfect for a weeknight but fancy enough for a weekend to entertain with.  Not to mention the leftovers.  Even better the next day.
You hungry, yet?  I think I will have that leftover pork for breakfast.. pork verde egg tacos, anyone?
Happy Friday!


Postpartum Favorites | Baby

Since the last time I was dealing with a couple of newborns I have come across some amazing brands, products, and the sweetest baby things that have me thinking "where were you two and a half years ago?"  Looking back I realized that there was not enough research I could have done to prepare me for motherhood.  BUT - the most invaluable information and recommendations came from other mama friends - and hopefully one or two of you might find this helpful.  I still cannot believe we are 5-ish weeks into having Baker in our lives, but I suppose time truly flies when you are living your life in three-hour increments!  
Postpartum Favorites
B A B Y 
1. graco little lounger // when the twins were born we bought a pack and play and set it up in our room for them to co-sleep and it worked well for what we needed it for.  We planned to do the same for Baker and for her first couple nights she slept in the pack and play.  On the Saturday after coming home from the hospital we planned to run the errands we had hoped to accomplish the day I went into labor.  We were browsing the baby aisles (at Target) and Jordan walked upon the display of a million and one options for a sleeping baby.  I had mentioned early in my pregnancy that I wanted to get a bassinet for Baker and he quickly told me 'no' and later I learned, and then laughed, that he was thinking of a traditional bassinet .  Looking at all the options he was super intrigued and we ended up going home with the graco little lounger.  While I cannot say that this one is better than another, because I never used one like this with the twins, I really like it!  It seems to be comfortable for her, semi-elevated for easing her tummy after nursing at night, and a huge plus is that its affordable comparative to other options on the market.
2. just born deluxe swaddle //  this swaddle was recommended to me by my pediatrician after I told her that I woke one early morning to Baker being on her side (???).  The little thing wiggled herself in such a way that she was sleeping on her side instead of on her back.  This swaddle has a 'cradle pad' that promotes back sleep and basically encourages her to stay put during the night.  My Houdini baby always finds a way to get her arms out- and this swaddle has the option for both arms-in and arms-out swaddling. I was so glad to be introduced to this product!
3. little unicorn swaddle blankets //  cotton muslin blankets are a favorite in this house- especially these ones.  They are the softest and most comfortable blankets we own.  We use them for swaddling her during those newborn catnaps throughout the day, but also as a nursing cover, carseat cover, and carrying them around the house as a place for Baker to lay.  Not to mention that Little Unicorn has the most adorable prints, ever.  I took a couple in my hospital bag and got several compliments on them from doctors, nurses, and guests.
4. mustela hair & body wash + lotion // I talked about our first try of mustela HERE when Baker had her first bathtime experience.  She cried the entire time but I am happy to report that her bath taking has become much less of a screamfest and more enjoyable on her end.  We are still using the Mustela and really love it!  Her baby skin remains moisturized until her next bath time - and not to mention how yummy she smells.  In the early months we had a heck of a time trying to find out what exactly we could use on Parker's sensitive skin (Jolie has used several soaps and lotions and nothing seems to irritate), so I'm always a little hesitant to try new products, but mustela has proven to be all that it say it is:)
5. solly wrap // where have you been all my motherhood life?  I say this as more of a statement, because holy free hands, baby wearing is amazing. As I sit here and type out this post remembering the long day before of cluster feeds and cranky babies (x3) I have Baker wrapped to my chest sleeping soundly.  I also made dinner, bathed, and put the girls to bed all whilst wearing her.  I borrowed the Moby wrap from a family member after the twins were born, but the fabric was thick and I couldn't get a tight enough wrap - or at a least I didn't feel like I could - with their small size.  By the time they were big enough to be worn correctly I sort of felt like I missed that window because they hated it.  Not this time.  I was determined because I knew I needed more hands to manage Parker and Jolie.  I also appreciate that the fabric is stretchy and lightweight for the summer months here in the south.
6. cloud b on the go travel sound machine // we have this machine for her nursery, but have been using the travel sound maker while she is in our room.  Its easy to tote around with us in the car and around the house as we need it.  While Parker and Jolie love ( and still love) the white noise, Baker is a big fan of the music sounds.  She loves her a lullaby.
7. nursing pillow // I have the boppy as well as dr. brown's gia nursing pillow  // my only experience with a nursing pillow has been with the gigantic My Breast Friend Twin nursing pillow.  The thing has clips to make sure it stays put.  I received a boppy pillow as a gift while I was pregnant but never used it because I always fed Parker and Jolie at the same time.  This go-round with a singleton I have gotten great use out of these nursing pillows!  I keep one in the bedroom and one in the living room so I don't have to move one from room to room.  The Dr. Brown's nursing pillow is designed to put the baby at an angle while nursing to help with digestion.  Anything to assist with my baby girl's tummy, especially when nursing at night.  I use them interchangeably and often will prop Baker on the traditional boppy pillow while I am nearby.
8. golden hill onesies -- for summer babies these are uber soft, light and breathable.  We have been living in them! These are super stylish for my teeny babe and the prints are pure perfection.  I am not ashamed to mention that I have nearly every print these hip mama's offer in their shop.  Darci and Becca started their small business from scratch with the girl mom in mind.  For the cooler weather months approaching (yippee!) these would be awesome as layering pieces - under cardigans and sweaters for a smooth non-bulky look.  I wish these onesies were around 2.5 years ago for Parker and Jolie to wear.  Stay tuned for a fun giveaway with golden hill!  I am excited to be partnering up with them and sharing some of their goodies with you!

Other baby things.. 
My favorite iphone app // baby connect (activity logger).  I used this app with the twins and brought it back to life again when Baker was born.  I mainly use it for tracking her last feedings and diapers but you can record naps, milestones, pumping, your baby’s mood, and temperature, etc.  I am surely not using the app up to its capacity, but appreciate all that it has to offer.

What about you?  Any newborn favorites you just can live without during those early weeks?   



Postpartum Favorites | Mama

I am approaching 6 whole weeks since Baker was born and I have survived (almost) yet again with a newborn.  
But.. not without a few of my postpartum pregnancy essentials.
Postpartum Favorites
M A M A 
1. seamless hipster panties
They are the softest panties I have ever worn with just enough stretch to make me feel comfortable in my postpartum body.  I am still opting for the full coverage panty *just in case* and these are seamless, making for a smooth look under my clothes.
2. benefit ooh la lift
I'm tired.  Really tired.  It makes all the difference when I wash my face first thing in the morning and use a little of this highlighting cream under my eyes.. hiding those dark circles due to the 11pm-3am-7am nursing sessions.  It is perfect for giving my face the 'oomph' it needs even when I don't bother putting on a full face of makeup - which is happening pretty often these days.
3. lansinoh nursing pads
I never had to use these when I nursed the twins because I always tandem fed them.  I also never had the let-down sensation when I heard them crying.. all those things new mamas experience.  Not for me.  I didn't even buy any nursing pads before Baker's arrival to prepare.  Why would I need those??  Oh.  But I do.  This time around its like I have a whole new set of hormones running because all of the above is what I've got going on.  Thank you Amazon Prime for getting the bulk boxes of nursing pads in the mail to me in 2-days or less:)  I like the Lansinoh brand the best because they are cotton and absorb well.. and they don't stick.  You mamas know what I'm saying.
4. bravado! seamless nursing bra
I have talked all about this nursing bra before (HERE + HERE), and this one is another favorite of mine.. I've actually purchased a couple more of both so I have more on hand and don't have to do the laundry to make sure I have a clean bra.  They have by far been the most comfortable bra I have ever worn.  I have also been wearing my favorite bralettenot a technically nursing bra, it is stretchy enough to be BF'ing friendly and also really comfortable.
5. pure body tees + tanks
These tees and tanks have once again carried me through my entire pregnancy and into postpartum.  I have mentioned them about a million times in my past 'favorites' posts - both in my tin pregnancy and most recently with Baker, and here I am showing love again.  They are very stretchy and hold their shape, so it makes it easy for nursing.  I also layer the tanks under non-nursing friendly tops so I am not exposing my entire (postpartum) midsection when its time to feed Baker.
6. dr. brown's hand pump
I do have a large full function pump and have used it often, but I have started to use this hand pump here and there and really like it!  Baker has been sleeping longer hours during the night, which means I am f u l l in the early morning when my milk production peaks (between 4am-7am) and need to get the rest off for comfort after she has eaten an hardly made a dent.  It is easy to have sitting on my nightstand rather than pulling out my electric pump, untangling tubes and cords, all while making a ton of noise.  This is just easier and takes hardly a thought to use.  I also find it to be handy when we are going out without Baker and I need to pump while I'm away.  Much more convenient.. more on breastfeeding and pumping later:)
7. nipple balm
Baker and I have gotten the hang of breastfeeding now, at 5 weeks, but in the early weeks I was left pretty sore while we both were still learning.  My left side was definitely the worst and applying this (as well as breast milk) in between feedings helped tremendously. There's a bunch of different options on healing ointments, but this one I just ordered in my bundle with Honest prenatal vitamins and DHA. 
8. silicone scar treatment sheets
For my fellow c-section mamas.  After my 2-week post op appointment I was given the go ahead by my OB to start applying treatment to my c-section scar.  I used the regular over the counter stuff after the twins, and it was just okay.  I stopped using it after about 6 months mainly out of laziness, but I honestly didn't see much change.  My OB was able to cut out my old scar, and so I have nothing residual showing, sort of like a 'fresh start' with hopes that I won't get lazy this time.  She mentioned silicone scar treatments, and I found this at CVS but I'm sure Walgreens would have it, too.  The sheets cover right over my scar and you are able to wear them for up to 7 days (according to the box), but I usually change it out every day and use Mederma PM Cream at night.
9. water bottle -- 32 ounce everyday water bottle
Hydration is just as important postpartum as it is while pregnant- especially when breastfeeding!  I usually tote this 32 ounce water bottle around all day - refilling it at least 4 times.  If I don't I totally wake up feeling like I have a hangover.  Nursing is serious business and takes a lot more out of you than you might realize.. I learned the hard way and dealt with a headache for basically the first 2 weeks postpartum.

Hopefully this is helpful!  I'll be back tomorrow with my postpartum favorites for Miss Baker:)  XO!



Weekend Love

It's Monday, and I'm feeling it.  Already on my second cup of coffee (before 9am) and laying in my bed with three babies.  It will be really hard for me to make myself get out of bed to do much else..
Ever have those days?  They always seem to follow a busy weekend, but the busy of this weekend was so good for my soul.  I spent some sweet mother-daughter time with my first girls and got in major belly laughs over good food with great friends.
Life lately there has been a lot about Baker and not a lot about Parker and Jolie. SO- Saturday I set daddy up for a solo success with Baker while I took the twins to breakfast and for a mani and pedi.  We have done this once before and I was impressed with how well they did.  This time they did even better.
 Picking out the perfect color for their little fingers and little toes and then being treated like big girls- just like mama.  Parker picked blue for her toes and hot pink for her fingers and Jolie picked hot pink for her fingers and coral orange her toes.  Me and Jolie picked the same color for our feet:)
 An hour later with a fresh coat of paint we sat down to put our shoes back on before loading up in the car.  They both proceeded to chat about how their nails matched their sun gasses. The cutest little conversations ever.  It was good good good to spend some time with my girls.  They are growing so fast and while I love that we can go and do things like this without a complete meltdown or running amuck, it also makes me wish that time would slow down just a little bit because I don't want to miss a thing.
headwrap / ruby blue inc // swing tank / gap (on sale + 40% off online using code TREAT) 
sunglasses / tommy hilfiger via tj maxx
 Saturday night we stayed in, but had our new neighbors over for dinner.  Luke and Mackenzie are new little friends - and Jordan and I absolutely love their parents, Natalie and Jeff.  They are mutual friends of friends, and we hit it off immediately like we've know one another for years.  Steaks, potatoes, mac and cheese, BBQ chicken + lots of crazy screeching and playing.  It made for an entertaining (and loud) evening:)  
 Saturday night went late and of course Sunday morning started early.  Waffles + peanut butter + strawberries for breakfast to start the day, but not before tutus.  Never before tutus.
These girls would wear them everyday, all day.  Often times I am woken in the morning with them already in full princess gear.
 The rest of Sunday was lazy.  Ran a couple errands had lunch..
And watched this perfect angel sleep.  Do you see those arm rolls?  See them?  They are totally there and getting rolly-er every day.
Her lips and nose kill me.
 After many-a-cap naps we left the twins at home with BB while we had an adult dinner date with these beauties and their hubbies.  Well, adult + a baby.  I'm not ready to leave her at home with anyone yet.   We have some date nights already planned for September that I won't be able to take her, but until then, she's coming along:)
We laughed and chatted and laughed some more over margaritas and chips and queso- realizing that it was time for us to leave when they were putting away the chairs and sweeping the floors underneath our feet.  We ended up shutting down the restaurant (on a Sunday-ha!).

Stella + Andrea are some of the sweetest gals I know and over the last couple of months our families have gotten pretty close.  I'm so thankful for how our friendships have grown and I'm excited for more nights likes these in our future.    
This week had begun with a long list of to-do's already.. but after a refreshing weekend, I think I'm ready for it.
I just have to actually leave this bed and get moving.  
I hope you all had a great weekend and a positive start to this week! 

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