I have been a mother for exactly three weeks today. Justin and I welcomed our beautiful baby girl into the world November 26th, at 7:01 pm after 24 hours of labor.
As a new Momma, I've found myself clinging to certain items this first month that have definitely made my life beyond easier and, I'm hoping to share those things with you so you can stock up before delivery, get you through your first weeks, or to give to Mommas you know are expecting in your life.
Because I'm sure you're curious, Maisy's birth story went something like this:
I went in to be induced Sunday night at 7 and went into active labor before they could administer any Pitosin.
"You lucked out!" they kept telling me. But my active labor consisted of a constant pattern of three straight minutes of intense contractions followed by a minute of rest and then I was back aboard the pain train. Was I really lucky?
When the doctor came in to check me to see if I could get some pain meds, my water broke which is officially the weirdest feeling in the world.
At one point during a long stretch of contractions, my mother was trying to calm me down by showing me pictures on her iPad of our dog Addison and I started to hyperventilate. I kept repeating that I couldn't feel my face and I heard my dad from across the room casually saying "Nan, she's hyperventilating".
Little Maisy Jean was born at 7lbs, 9 oz and 20 inches long. Momma pushed her out as her epidural was wearing off and that is one thing I will never let that little girl forget.
1.) Baby Tracker App by What to Expect When You're Expecting
Now that you're no longer expecting, the next step is to meticulously check everything your baby does. From the moment you pop that little bundle out you will be bombarded with numbers:
"The baby should be feeding 8-12 times a day..."
"...Should have about 6 wet diapers...."
It's impossible to keep track of all that when your only concern every hour of the day is to feed baby, change baby, soothe baby, repeat.
Enter this app, it has convenient timers and keeps detailed logs so you can easily see how often baby needs to be changed, how long she feeds, etc to ensure she's falling into healthy habits.
The best part? It's so easy it takes literally seconds to record activity. Start the timer, end the timer. Boom, activity logged.
The app is available for free on iTunes
2.) Swaddle Plus Muslin Blankets by Aden + Anais
I received some of these blankets as a shower gift and bought another pack before Maisy arrived and I have to say we absolutely love them, and Maisy likes them too!
The material is soft and breathable, making them perfect swaddling blankets. They are also absorbent making them the best on-hand burp rags, and their length is long enough that they make great on-the-go nursing covers too.
We have used them as car-seat covers too when we're out around town.
Plus, each blanket has the cutest little design on it, making them perfect props for your early shots. We wrapped Maisy up in one for her first hospital pictures as well as her newborn photos!
Blankets come in packs of three or four and are available at Target
3.) Medela Nipple Shields
Throughout pregnancy any Momma will be told that breast feeding is so important. So, when you're first told that your baby may have a problem feeding due to the shape of your nipple, it can be an instant disappointment.
I've been using these Nipple Shields since Maisy was born and they work so well for us. They make it easy for her to latch on and stay latched on and allow me to feed her naturally without too much poking and prodding of my already sore nipples!
You can pick these up for around $10 at any Medela retailer.
4.) Boppy Pillow
My Boppy has been with me since delivery and I could not be happier about that. I threw it in the car on a whim and it has quickly become the best thing we have for our baby.
The pillow helps hold up my tired arms during 3am feedings, supports Maisy's back when she's meeting her new family, and all around is just simply amazing.
One extra tip, invest in both a waterproof liner and a few extra covers for the Boppy. They are all washable and will keep the pillow looking cute after lots of spit up, leakage and surprises from diapers.
These things are seriously the best thing you could ever get for your little one. My cousin Jackie suggested them to me at my baby shower so we picked up one little duck at Babies R Us.
The soft plush is attached to the pacifier making it easier for little hands learning to grab and grasp to hang on to and keep in their mouth (and just as easy to take out as well!).
The best part? Because the paci is attached to the little stuffy, they don't get lost in blankets, strollers, car seats, or cribs.
If you're breastfeeding, you've heard of all the woes of using a pacifier. Here's my stance on it:
If you have a baby like I do who is very orally fixated (likes sucking on fingers, hands, falls asleep gumming a nipple during feeding) pacifiers can help soothe without becoming too addictive.
We never give Maisy her Wubby if she's crying for something we can give her (food, sleep) but some babies just need to soothe and a Wubby does just that.
To find a retailer near you, visit the Wubbanub website here!
These five little things are huge helpers, trust me. We couldn't have made it through these past few weeks without them.
Whatever you Mommas pack in your arsenal, nothing gets your through those stressful days like a peaceful look on your little one's face.
When Maisy falls asleep in my arms, I know I'm doing something right and I know it's all worth it.
Hang in there Mommas!
Thanks for looking :)