Baby Beach Essentials

We just got home from the beach this past weekend! It was our first time taking our son. He was 10 months and actually turned 11 months while we were there. We had a great time but it is certainly different traveling with a little one. I’m sharing a few essentials that made our time at the beach much easier! *This post does contain affiliate links that a make a very small percentage of commission on if you purchase from them. This helps me pay for my domain name, WordPress subscription, etc which are all costs I have to maintain this website! :)*

Beach Tent

This is an absolute must have for me. Not an umbrella but an actual beach tent. Make sure it is one that has a bottom attached so your baby will not be directly on the sand. This is the exact one we have. I found a more affordable option here! Our tent kept him shaded which protected him from the sun and kept him cool.

Kiddie Pool

We just grabbed one once we got there but you could totally bring one with you! We placed the pool underneath the tent and killed it with fresh water. We were afraid the saltwater might irritate his skin. We only put about an inch or two of water in the pool but he was more than happy with that. It kept him cool especially one on day it was super hot with no breeze.

Stroller Fan

We used this inside the tent to circulate air. The one we have charges using a USB port. It also has 3 different settings. I take this thing everywhere and it comes in handy!

Hat + Rash guard

Keeping him protected from the UV rays at the beach was very important to me. I know he was still exposed to them despite spending 99% of the time in the shade while we were there. I love these hats since they shade the entire head and stay on well. I have him wear a rash guard to cover more skin as well!

Baby powder + make up brush

I had heard about this trick forever but was pretty skeptical it would actually work. I purchased some baby powder and a cheap makeup brush to apply it to his body to remove sand. It works really well! If you use it on skin with wet sand you do have to work a little harder but it truly is a lifesaver. I will never go to the beach again without it!

Sunscreen

You want to have plenty of sunscreen! We applied it before we even headed to the beach. I have been using Babo Botanicals both the stick and spray all summer. It has not irritated his skin ever. He will even rub it into his eyes sometimes and there has not been any issues! I love that the ingredients are pretty clean so we aren’t putting a bunch of chemical junk on his skin.

Squirt bottle

I literally had a 99 cent squirt bottle in my bag for tanning and ended up filling it up with freshwater for him to play with. He loved for us to squirt him and he would also play with the bottle himself. Cheap and easy entertainment!

Water book

A friend had one of these at the pool recently. It floats and this exact one changes color as it gets wet. He has been loving it lately!

Wagon

We did not need this because we stayed on the beach this time. If you aren’t staying directly on the beach then I would highly recommend having a wagon for transporting everything and baby. I have heard amazing things about the Veer Wagons but they are super pricey! A less expensive option I have looked at is the foldable Radio Flyer one. It has great reviews!

Pool float

We did not take Turner in the ocean and also did not have a pool where we stayed so we didn’t take a float. We do have floats at the pool we use at home and lake. He liked this one when he was much younger and now he enjoys this one. The one he likes now is pricier but it will last a long time. You can put them in it so many different ways and it has a pretty high weight limit so we will get a ton of use out of it!

Bonus things to bring are lots of patience and another set of adult hands to help if you are able! We had my parents and sister which was so helpful for getting him up to the room for nap time. We also had more people to help set up at the beach. I highly recommend help if you can swing it! What’s your biggest baby hack for the beach? We head back in March so I’d love to have some more tips for the next trip! Leave them in the comments.

Love,

Megan

Farmers Branch Family Travel Guide

My parents and I recently took Turner on a quick family getaway to Farmers Branch, Texas! I was so impressed with the area and loved that it is only a 2.5 hour drive from where I live in Northeast Texas. It’s also literally in the heart of the DFW Metroplex and only takes 15 minutes to get to downtown Dallas!

Where To Stay

There are many places to stay in the Farmers Branch area but we stayed at the DoubleTree by Hilton Dallas near the Galleria. We really liked that it was only minutes from restaurants, attractions, and shopping. It was quiet and clean plus the room was a nice size for the four of us. The hotel has a bar downstairs if you fancy a cocktail, an outdoor pool and Starbuck’s coffee on hand. I would definitely stay in this hotel again!

What to Do

On a hot summer day the best place to be is be in the water to cool off! We spent an afternoon at Frog Pond and there truly was something for every age group.

We spent our time in the kids area where there are smaller slides, water features and a bucket of water dumps every 10 minutes! I liked that the water was shallow and we could sit along the edge so Turner could play.

The other area of the park is geared toward older kids and adults. It has a few large waterslides that I contemplated going on! It also has a lazy river with floats and a lagoon pool. I really appreciated that there were plenty of lifeguards keeping everyone safe in both areas.

There were plenty of umbrellas and pavilions for shade plus chairs and picnic tables. They had concessions available and they were very affordable. You can also pay a small fee to bring in your own cooler! Overall, we really enjoyed our time at Frog Pond and would love to return sometime.

Another cool summer activity we did was visit the Dallas Aquarium! It was only 15 minutes from our hotel. We skipped through the first few floors pretty quickly in order to get to more of the sea life since Turner’s attention span is pretty short currently. It was fun to see all the different animals throughout the aquarium. Kids under 2 are free!

We went close to opening time and there were more people than I thought would be there at that time on a weekday. It still wasn’t overly crowded though. You could get around pretty easily even with a stroller.

There were other things we didn’t get a chance to do like catch a show at the local Firehouse Theater, visit the Rose Gardens, or check out all of the newly built Mustang Station. Other things to do within a 15 minute drive of Farmers Branch: Galleria Mall, Dallas Zoo, American Airlines Center, Perot Museum, Dallas Arboretum, and Dallas Museum of Art.

Where to Eat

We had lunch at Bay 34th Street Pizzeria. The owners are transplants from New Jersey. They have a lunch deal that is pizza by the slice plus a drink. It’s not only delicious but also very affordable!

We had breakfast at the Starwood Cafe that consisted of breakfast burritos and cinnamon roll French toast. Yum! It came out quickly and we enjoyed it all. It was super cute inside too.

We grabbed coffee at Native Coffee which is a great spot to also catch up on a little work. It has WiFi and plenty of places to get comfy.

We ended up having Salt Grass Steakhouse for dinner because it was across the road from our hotel and Turner needed to eat ASAP. It was good as always! A few places we wanted to check out but didn’t get to: Nuevo Leon Mexican Restaurant, Cattleack BBQ, and C Poke Bowls. I have heard good things about them all!

Overall, I liked how easy the Farmers Branch area was to navigate. We never encountered any traffic and felt safe the entire time! It’s such a quick and easy trip plus I feel like there’s a little bit of everything for families to do. Do you have questions about our trip to Farmers Branch, Texas? Let me know in the comments and I’ll be glad to answer!

5 things I Learned From Becoming A First Time Mom In A Pandemic

The good, the bad, and the ugly. I’m sharing 5 things I learned from becoming a first time mom during a pandemic.

  1. Family and friends being involved in your child’s life is one of the most precious gifts.

It began with the hospital. Due to restrictions no one else was allowed to be at the hospital. I had always thought I would have my mom there with me while I was laboring. That truthfully was really hard for me to come to terms with. We were blessed enough despite the circumstances to be able to have both sets of our parents around from the day we brought Turner home from the hospital. Having the help was really nice. My mom came everyday for the first few weeks for a couple of hours since Tyler went directly back to work. He has been able to see his grandparents often since we are in the same town. Other family and friends he wasn’t able to meet until months later. Some just met him for the first time this past weekend and some still haven’t met him. I definitely envisioned all my family and friends meeting him within the first few weeks and definitely by two months old. It didn’t happen that way due to COVID but it made me treasure the time I did get with loved ones. I’m so grateful for every moment now and don’t take it for granted.

2. Having an empty calendar is a blessing in disguise.

Due to many things being closed, postponed or capacities limited our social calendar certainly cleared quite a bit. In some ways I wasn’t thrilled with it because I was so excited to get out and about after having a baby for some normalcy. Having a much more free schedule allowed our little family to spend lots of time together. We were forced to slow down and enjoy the small moments with Turner. They pass too quickly not to hold on to them and treasure each one! We have spent more quality time together than we would have if things had been different and I think we will definitely keep it up even as things return to normal.

3. Less is more.

Oh boy, this may also just be a first time mom in general thing but we definitely overdid it on the baby items. Spending all day everyday inside your home makes you analyze what all you have. Babies do not need 5 different options to sit in. They also do not need more than 2-3 holiday related outfits; especially if you have no where to go in order for them to wear them. (Don’t ask me how many Christmas outfits my son had. Far too many.) Additionally, a few toys are more than substantial. Most of the time they would prefer playing with a box, diaper rash cream tube, or your shoe. Trust me, you can always place an order on Amazon for anything you need!

4. Both parents need an outlet outside of being just mom or dad.

This is probably one of the things I struggled with the most. There weren’t as many things to go and do for me earlier on in Turner’s life due to all of things being closed/limited. I definitely had to get creative at times. I got quite a few pedicures and walked around Target. My husband is a little better about this because he actually has concrete hobbies he does. As a couple I think it’s also important to get a break together. We have had date nights and we then day arrived I truly didn’t feel like putting the energy to get ready to go somewhere. Despite that I always found a way to make myself go and we enjoyed the time together every time! It’s so important to put in that effort for your marriage.

5. Modern technology and pick up services are one of the best things to happen to the 21st century.

Call me lazy but being able to roll up to a business and complete my transaction without even getting out of a car is the best thing ever! I’ve done Walmart grocery pick-up since 2019 so I was no stranger to that. I hate grocery shopping and love just going on the app to do it quickly. Due to the pandemic there were many new curbside services taking place. I think I have had a Target pick up order almost every single week. Chick-Fil-A curbside has seen my face more than I care to admit. Not having to get a baby in and out of the car is truly the most convenient thing ever! And, I’ll say what most of you are thinking: driving through to grab Mexican food plus a margarita to go for the house isn’t too shabby either. Don’t get me wrong, I still love to stroll around stores and see things in person or eat a meal in an actual restaurant but; convenience is definitely king when you have a baby. I’m glad these services are here to stay!

If I knew beforehand that I would have my first baby during a global pandemic would I purposefully choose that time period? Maybe not. Now that I have met my son though I can tell you I would do it over a million times just for him! I’m choosing to take the high road and use these lessons I’ve learned going forward. I’ll treasure the memories but I’m ready to move toward normalcy!

My Melasma Journey with Musely

Melasma is something that began showing up on my face in the late spring of 2018. I had never had it before. At this time it was concentrated on my upper lip area – talk about embarrassing! It constantly looked looked like I had a mustache but was literally just a highly pigmented area of skin. It seemed to get worse through the summertime and fade somewhat during the fall and winter months. The next year it came back with a vengeance. I didn’t understand because I wore SPF every single day even when I wasn’t leaving my house! I started wearing a hat every time I was out in the sun. It still didn’t go away or lessen. I tried many products and didn’t see much of a change.

When I got pregnant my melasma got much worse. It migrated from my upper lip only to my cheeks as well. Virtually the entire bottom part of my face was covered. (Pictured above and in the two photos below.) It was a source of stress for me because I was constantly looking for makeup products that could potentially cover it but they never did fully. I knew while I was pregnant I wouldn’t be able to try anything to treat it but I started doing research during this time. I found Musely through a group for people with Melasma. The before and after photos were truly unbelievable!

I started my Musely journey a few weeks after I had my son. I didn’t have high hopes considering nothing had worked for me in the past. (My before photos are pictured above and below.)

To begin my journey with Musely I downloaded the app on my phone and completed the questions and submitted my before photos. Soon, a dermatologist reviewed my skin concerns and prescribed me with a formula specifically for my face! I was given the Spot Cream to use nightly. I loved how easy the diagnosis process was and that I didn’t even have to leave my house. Extremely convenient with a newborn!

(Pictured above after 30 days of treatment with the Musely Spot Cream)

My prescribed Spot Cream came directly from Musely to my front door. I began using it nightly as directly right away. I didn’t change anything else about my skincare routine during my treatment. I washed my face as usual, used the Spot Cream, and moisturized before bed each night.

Personally, I did not experience any irritation on my face during my journey. It is possible though depending on your skin type. I began to see results especially on my cheek area a few weeks after beginning my treatment with Musely.

My results after 50 days are pictured above. All of my melasma on my cheeks is gone and above my upper lip has lightened so much! I am still continuing my treatment with Musely in order to listen the upper lip area even more. I love the ease of using Musely and the results I’ve seen. Don’t have melasma? You can still use Musely for other skin concerns like wrinkles, pores, or texture! Let me know in the comments if you’ve ever tried anything to treat your Melasma and whether it worked or not!

10 Baby Registry Must Haves

I originally was going to write this post last summer. In fact, it’s been saved as a draft since June 2020. I think now that I’ve been a mom for almost 9 months I have a much better idea of what we really used daily and what we didn’t. I’ll be honest, we definitely had way too many baby things. If I had it to do again I would definite minimize the amount. I’m sharing the 10 most essential things we’ve used that you should consider adding to your own baby registry!

  1. Boppy Lounger

This is an absolute must have for me. I cannot believe how much we used and still use it to this day! Essential it’s just a specially designed pillow for babies. They start at about $32 and go up to $44 for some of the special prints on Pottery Barn. We have the grey preferred one and it’s great because it’s neutral and doesn’t show dirt as much. You can throw the entire thing in the washing machine and let it dry. It’s not approved for sleeping but if he dozed off on it while I was next to him I allowed him to continue sleeping since I was supervising. Otherwise it’s just a great safe spot to rest them when you need a hands free moment. Do not ever set it on any elevated surfaces even when baby is brand new. Newborns are stronger than you think!

2. Burp Cloths

I vastly underestimated how many of these you use the first few months. I also tried to use the “cute” ones. I have some from Milkbarn and they don’t absorb hardly anything. Get the plain white old school ones from Amazon. I recommend 2 packs and keeping them everywhere in the house!

3. Pajamas

You will live in pajamas especially the first month or so. Zip pajamas or gowns are my recommendation! We personally loved gowns for nighttime sleep. You just whip it up, change the diaper and back down. We did zipper or magnetic pajamas during the day. Do not ever get the snaps. Just trust me. Some brands I like are: Magnetic Me, Milkbarn, Kissy Kissy, Magnolia Baby, and Little Sleepies. They’re all great quality and last through countless washes. They are definitely more expensive than most but I would rather have fewer pajamas and do more laundry. I’m a do laundry everyday person so it wasn’t an issue. If you don’t like doing laundry as much you probably will want more pajamas. I think 5-7 in their size is a good number. We were probably changing 1-2 times a day depending and then a night pair. For more affordable options on pajamas I like: Cloud Island from Target and Burt Bee’s because they both have cute prints and zip up.

4. A Way to Feed Baby

You’ll have to choose what you want to do whether it’s nursing or formula or a combination. We chose formula only so we made sure to have bottles, nipples, and formula before. I wouldn’t buy any formula though because we ended up switching week one but I was able to donate it. The hospital gives you formula bottles as well to take home. We also have the Baby Breeze Formula Pro which I’ve spoken fondly of and is still a real MVP for us but it’s definitely not a must. You can mix a bottle by hand with water! We also have a sterilizer but it’s not essential either. You can wash bottles by hand but it just adds an extra layer of cleanliness.

5. Monitor

You can go old school and get a sound only monitor for around $20 or get a video monitor. Technically this isn’t a must have but it does allow you to let your child sleep without you being in the room with them. I really like the Lollipop Camera since it can be used anywhere. It has a grip that you can mold onto anything so you can move it around your home or take it with you anywhere. It also has a user friendly app that can be accessed from your phone or tablet!

6. Diaper bag

You don’t necessarily have to get a diaper bag but you need to set up a bag with baby essentials. Namely, diapers, wipes, a change of clothes, burp cloths, pacifier, swaddle. I love my Freshly Picked backpack so much. You truly can use a bag you already have if you like! You’ll be the one carrying it so do what you want.

7. Sound machine

It’s not something you have to have but having it is very convenient. Especially once they start going to bed before you. We like our Hatch because you can even control it from your phone. There are also sound machines as low as $10 on Amazon. My husband literally was hammering a drawer in the other night and Turner never woke up. Thank you, Hatch!

8. Car seat

You must have one to leave the hospital and they will check it! Make sure if you get a used one that it’s newer than 7 years old because that’s when they expire. The date is often on the bottom. We love our Nuna Pipa Lite but it’s definitely more expensive than a lot of them. $50 is the lowest I have found for newborn car seat. You want them safe though so it’s worth it.

9. Kick ‘n’ Play Piano

It’s probably the ugliest baby item of all time but it’s perfect for tummy time! Babies love all the colors to look at. Turner would lay under the hanging toys in awe! He still uses it now at almost 9 months and the piano comes off for them to play with when they’re older.

10. Somewhere for baby to sleep

This is totally up to you! It can be a bassinet, pack n play, or crib. A lot of parents like to have baby in their own room at first and the AAP actually recommends it. We did it for 5 weeks and if we were to do it over I would’ve moved him to his nursery the first week. I slept so much better when I couldn’t hear his every move. We used the SNOO Bassinet the first 5.5 months but it’s definitely not necessary. As long as baby has a safe place to sleep you are good to go!

What’s the one thing from your registry you couldn’t have lived without? Let me know below in the comments!

Baby Proofing Your Dogs

Baby Proofing Your Dogs

If you know me in real life then you know I absolutely adore my dogs. My black Labrador retriever, Reese, has been a part of our family since my husband and I were dating. We got her together and she was at our engagement and in the photo for our save the date. After getting married we got our Golden Retriever, Maddux, who is the energizer bunny of our dogs. My dogs were actually the first to know I was pregnant since they waited for the results with me because my husband was out of town! They kept me company throughout my pregnancy and months of quarantine once COVID started since my husband still had to go to work daily. They truly are my best friends! I cried a lot leading up to my due date because I was so worried they would be upset with me for bringing a baby home. Everyone would say when I was pregnant: “Just wait until that baby gets here, things will change!” I’m here to tell you that they do but for the better.

Maddux is technically “my dog,” since I was the one that got him and took care of him from being a puppy onward plus he is a male so he naturally gravitates more toward me. Once I got pregnant Reese must have been able to sense what was going on because she got very protective of me. I’ve heard dogs sometimes know people are pregnant before they even know themselves and I could definitely see how that’s true!

I want to share some tips that helped us with transitioning our dogs to their new baby brother. I obviously am not an expert in dog training of any kind but this is what worked for us!

Before we were ever pregnant we let our dogs be around kids as much as possible! We let kids pet them and love them while closely supervising them both. No matter what kids did to either dog they absolutely loved the attention and were so gentle! I know with COVID this may not be as much of a possibility but if you do have kids you see in your life and their parents are comfortable with it then expose your dogs to them! Of course remember some kids are afraid of dogs and in that case it’s better if they are put up. All of our friends that came around our dogs had dogs themselves so they were fine with the kids playing with them.

Play sounds of baby crying, babbling, laughing! Anything baby noise related play it for the dog often leading up to birth. That way they aren’t startled when they hear any of the noises. Our dogs don’t even bat an eye if Turner cries or makes noise of any sort!

Let the dogs be a part of the preparation process for baby when possible! We went in the nursery every single day and would hang out in there. We let them sniff around and even left the door open for them to go in as they wanted to explore.

Once baby was actually here we made sure to send a blanket and hat with his scent on it home for the dogs to investigate. I had my husband go downstairs and send it with a parent to take to our house. In COVID times this might not be possible but if it is not then maybe send someone in for a few minutes before you go inside with an item with the baby’s scent on it.

Once we actually got home the dogs were very curious. Maddux wanted to be close to him right away but Reese took a day or two to warm up. That’s just her personality though! She’s a bit of a diva. We still let our dogs sleep in our room (yes, they sleep in our bed) even when Turner was staying in there. We left the door open because some nights one or both of them would leave the room at first during the night. We let them be near baby as much as possible but we do supervise them very closely and never leave them alone just to be safe.

I try to show them the same amount of attention I always have throughout the day. They hang out with me during nap time and after Turner goes to bed we all cuddle. I’ve heard people say to only give them attention when baby is around and ignore them when baby is gone. We didn’t follow this advice and just give them attention whenever and it has worked fine for us.

Turner is starting to show a lot of interest in the dogs now! He has started to reach for them, turn his head to watch them and sometimes they actually make him laugh! As he gets older we will make it a point to teach him how to treat them kindly but will always supervise them when they are together. We have had zero issues with either of our dogs and interacting with baby. They do both like to lick him quite a bit so we say “Thank you” to them and move them away instead of saying no. A baby fence or play yard is a great idea to keep them separated if you want to! We don’t do it much yet but definitely will once Turner is on the move.

One last thing I worried about before baby was here was barking. Our dogs only bark if they think someone is at our home. That means every delivery truck, neighbor slamming car door, kids riding their bicycle past etc. I guess Turner hears it so much that 99% of the time it doesn’t wake him up when he’s sleeping. I think he just got used to it so it doesn’t bother him! Overall, the transition has been very seamless for us and it melts my heart seeing my original babies with my human baby!

Do you have any questions about bringing a baby home with dogs? Leave them below in the comments and I will be glad to answer!

Love,

Megan

5 products, 5 minutes: everyday makeup routine

There’s just something about getting dressed and putting yourself together that seems to make the whole day more productive even if you’re working from home. I don’t like to spend a lot of extra time doing either since no one other than my son sees me during the day. Honestly, when I was still teaching full time I still didn’t put much effort into my appearance! I’ve made it a goal to always get dressed in real, yet comfortable clothes everyday plus try to do a little makeup. I’m sharing my 5 minute (or less) routine using 5 products all of which can be found at your local drugstore or Ulta. As always all of the items are linked on my liketoknow.it account!

After I get dressed and brush my hair either leaving it down or throwing it up somehow I make sure to start with a clean face and moisturizer. My first step is to apply Tula’s Blurring Primer with my hands. I do have a discount code for you to use: PIGSFLY.

Second step is to wet a sponge, I like RealTechnique’s version. It’s affordable and I replace them monthly for sanitary reasons. I then go in with a small amount of It Cosmetics Illumination Tinted SPF using the damp sponge. I throughly blend that and make sure to apply a little to my undereye area as well.

Third step is to apply a small amount of Physican’s Formula Butter Bronzer with a large face brush. Make sure to get your neck as well so it blends!

Final step is the curl your eyelashes and brush eyebrows. I then apply L’Oreal Voluminous Primer and Mascara in Blackest Black. You can do as many coats as you like! On weekdays I usually just do a quick one on top. Feel free to apply lipblam/gloss of your choice and even use a setting spray if you like.

I love that this whole process doesn’t take long or many products. It gives me just enough coverage to feel confident and put together for the day. I did a short video on my Instagram if you’d like to see the whole process. All of the products I shared today can be shopped in the free liketoknow.it app and you can even save your favorites for shopping at a later time!

What’s one thing that helps you feel motivated for the day? Let me know in the comments below!

Love,

Megan

My Honest Review of the SNOO Bassinet

We are officially a SNOO graduate as of this weekend. We started sleeping in the crib at night for good! Since the SNOO Bassinet is a newer product and technology I wanted to write an honest review about our experience with it. [I have zero affiliation with Happiest Baby – the creator of the SNOO. All of these opinions are my own as a first time mom!]

What in the world is a SNOO?

I got this question a lot. It’s still not widely known in the parenting world even though it was been around for a few years now! I heard of it before I was even pregnant and knew it would probably be what we chose for a bassinet for a baby. In short it is a WiFi enabled smart bassinet that mimics the sounds and movements of the womb. It is supposed to help the baby transition into the fourth trimester! (If you don’t know what that is Google it. It’s a thing.) If it your baby is upset and needs to be soothed the bassinet will use the sound and movement to help do that. It has a special swaddle sleep sack that clips in on either side of the bassinet that you place the baby in to keep them safe. It has an app that connects to it where you can view sleep logs and level the motion and noise up manually if you choose. It was also created by the Dr. Harvey Karp who wrote The Happiest Baby on the Block book which covers helping your newborn sleep more efficiently.

Why did you choose the SNOO?

We thought as first time parents that it would be helpful to have an extra set of hands. We also really liked the safety aspect of it. Additionally, anything that will help you get more sleep in those first few months with a newborn is priceless so we thought it couldn’t hurt!

Is the SNOO difficult to use?

Not at all. Truly anyone could use it. It only took minutes to put together. It was easy to set up and connect to Wi-Fi. It’s also easy to put baby in and and tak out of. The app is very simple and user-friendly as well. You can have the app on as many devices as you like so you and your partner can both have it on your phone as well as an iPad or any other device you would like. If you do run into any issues they have a number you can call or you can email them whether they’ll help you troubleshoot.

Did you feel safe allowing your newborn to have that much motion?

[Disclaimer the pillow pictured in the snow with Turner is not recommended by happiest baby. In fact they recommend that nothing is in the bassinet with the baby other than the baby itself and the swaddle. We chose to use this in order to help combat flat head and the loss of hair on the back of his head but it didn’t work. We quit using it after a couple of months. I probably wouldn’t use it with another child because it was just a waste as well as it’s technically not safe sleep practice.]

Honestly at first, no. They are swaddled with a Velcro band and zipped into their sleep sack so they are in there very safely. The first time that you see this new level up to help soothe the baby it is a little surprising. They don’t have much neck control at first so it looks like it’s moving a lot more than it really is. You can turn motion limiter on at any time which just means that it will not go over level two when soothing your child. We actually turned the motion limiter on for the first month and then turned it off until month three. At month three we found that he was getting much more upset when it would go to level 3 and 4 and could not be consoled and we would have to intervene. He was still responding well to levels one and two though so we just put the motion limit her on so it wouldn’t go up any farther. You also have the option to completely lock it on baseline so it won’t level up at all but I personally don’t see the point in doing that since the point is for the bassinet to help with the soothing process!

Did the SNOO make you feel like you were a lazy parent? 

Not at all. I really thought it would but you still do have to get up to feed and change them and sometimes even soothe them when the SNOO can’t. It just gave us an extra set of hands that could try to soothe him before we had to step in. It’s certainly no miracle worker which I didn’t expect it to be. If your baby cannot be soothed by the motion and sound of this new within a few minutes it will completely shut off and alert you to go to them. You can feel confident that you’re not neglecting your baby because it’s going to let you know if they really need you.


Do you feel like the SNOO really made your baby sleep better?

This is such a loaded question because I really do feel like it is somewhat dependent on how well the baby naturally sleeps. For Turner we have only had to intervene once when putting him down for the night and he’s 5.5 months old now. It’s obvious to me that his drive for going to sleep is very high and it comes easily to him. The first two weeks he was sleeping three hours and we would have to wake him so he could eat. Once we were given the go ahead to stop waking him to eat at two weeks he started sleeping 4 to 5 hour stretches before his first wake up of the night. This is much longer than the average baby this age sleeps at a time! The wake ups typically were 10 minutes or less where he would get changed and have a bottle, burped and back down. At about two months he started sleeping six hours but still doing 1 to 2 wake ups during the night to eat. He gradually pushed his wake up time each night a little further and tell there was only one wake up for a bottle. At four months he slept fully through the night for the first time randomly and then started doing it consistently a few days later. Typically about 12 hours give or take about 30 minutes. This is still what he is doing even having moved to the crib. Overall I do believe that Turner is naturally a good sleeper and I don’t have any other experience with other bassinets to compare it to since he’s my first child. Do do think this new helped especially at first when he was brand new but I do think his sleeping has been a combination of just his natural sleeping temperament and then also the snoo.

Do you have anything that you regret about the SNOO?

I only have two things because I went into it with super low expectations for sleep because I knew it wasn’t going to be a miracle worker and I knew that he was a baby. The first thing that I regret is not moving him out of our room sooner. Happiest baby and the AAP recommend rooming in otherwise known as keeping the baby in a bassinet in the parents room for the first six months. Turner was a very loud newborn sleeper and was waking me up literally all night. I was getting very little sleep and we even had our hatch sound machine on. At five weeks we decided to move him to his own room since we have the outlet sock and camera. The only other regret that I have is not allowing the SNOO to do it’s thing. What I mean by that is a lot of times I would go to him because it was quicker and easier to soothe him before I really let this new intervene in level up to try to soothe him. Sometime after three months I started allowing it to work first for a few minutes before I would step in and it made a world of difference. He quickly started sleeping longer and needing less motion to soothe him and less often.

Did you do all naps in this new like happiest baby suggests?

We tried to at first. They suggest doing all sleep in the snow exclusively until they transition to the crib full-time. For the first month to probably six weeks I tried all day every day to get him to nap in the snow and he would only sleep for about 20 minutes. Finally I gave up and started allowing him to take swing naps or in a carrier etc. basically anywhere where I could supervise him sleeping to make sure he was safe. At a little before three months I moved him to the crib in a Magic Merlin suit for naps. He has done all of his naps in there since then. Recently we moved him to a Kyte baby sleep sack during naps. I know they say that it doesn’t matter but I do believe that having him nap in the crib for that long has helped our transition be a lot easier. As a parent you just have to do what works for you because sometimes it doesn’t matter where they’re getting the nap as long as they’re getting it!


Were you worried about the transition from the SNOO to the crib?

This was like my biggest source of anxiety even though I had read everywhere that the transition is basically seamless and babies don’t have a problem with it. I literally put off transitioning him from this new to the crib for a month and a half. Truthfully, the only reason we finally transitioned him is because he’s in the 99th percentile for height and he was running out of room. The transition so far couldn’t have been smoother. I literally stressed over nothing. 

Does the SNOO sleep train your child?

It does not. Sleep training is essentially helping babies learn tools to help put themselves to sleep or back to sleep when they wake up throughout the night. Turner is not sleep trained as of yet because you can’t begin the process until they are out of the SNOO since the bassinet itself is referred to as a sleep prop! (Something that helps baby fall asleep. Swaddle, pacifier etc are also props.) At this time we will wait until we need to sleep train him since at this time his nighttime sleep is good. Now, naps are a different story for another day!


Is this new really worth the price?

It’s definitely pricey. Currently the price for a brand new SNOO to purchase is $1395. You can also rent it by the month for $129 which for how long we used it would’ve came out to $774 which is still cheaper than purchasing it. We were very blessed to have been able to borrow it from my brother and sister-in-law who had my nephew six months earlier. I’m confident however that we would’ve chosen most likely to rent it anyway if we hadn’t had this opportunity. We really don’t have anywhere to store the SNOO when it’s not in use plus we’re not planning on adding to our family for a couple of years so purchasing really wouldn’t make sense for us. The resell value for the SNOO is extremely high as you can pretty much resell it and get all of your money back if you decided to do that. Overall, I do think for the safety aspect and first time parents it’s worth it. Is it a must have for all parents and babies? Absolutely not! Your baby will be just fine in a regular bassinet or pack and play to sleep their first few months. It’s definitely a splurge item that will make having a baby a little bit easier and I definitely would choose it again for a baby in the future.

I’m thinking about doing an in depth post about our journey with the SNOO plus the transition, would you guys be interested in that? Let me know below!

Love,

Megan

Most Used Baby Products: Month 3 and 4

Hello, remember me? It’s been awhile. I had much better intentions and plans for writing more posts but life happens. We are currently nearing the end of month 4 with Turner and I am finally sharing my must haves for month 3 and 4.

Our Hatch Rest is used for naps and nighttime sleep. I love it because my husband and I can both control it from the app on our phones. It even has timers and favorites you can set. It easily turns on when you touch the top of it. Our favorite sound to use is the “TV Static” one.

We give these Enfamil Probiotic drops to Turner everyday. I really do think it helps him to have less gas and have more regular bowel movements. We chose this brand because we use the same one for his formula.

We started using the Magic Merlin Sleep suit at 3 months for naps only. We are still using the SNOO for all nighttime sleep and will be transitioning soon. The suit helps them feel secure and relaxed without swaddling it. I think of it as the next step after swaddling and before a sleep sack. I do think it helped him nap a little better. It looks like it would be hot but it is not at all. I just recently quit using it for naps because I am trying to get him ready for all sleep in the crib in a sleep sack. You can actually use the Merlin until they roll in the suit. Plus, I won’t lie…it’s pretty cute when they have it on!

This baby Einstein Toy is the best $8 I’ve ever spent. We do try not to overstimulate him too much. Only two of his toys have flashing lights and music and this is one of them. He is mesmerized by this thing! We reserve it for emergencies when either he is very upset and we have tried everything to calm him down or for when we need 5 minutes to eat. It plays snippets of classical music and the lights go with it…so it’s educational, right?

This may seem like an odd thing to include but hear me out: you need a space heater. This idea was given to me by a friend who is also a blogger. Turner loves baths but hates being cold afterward no matter how tightly we bundle him in the bowl and hurry to dress him. I plug this small heater in before bath so it can warm the changing area. He rarely makes any fuss now when getting dried off and changed. Obviously, be mindful of safety with a baby and heater. I always unplug mine as soon as we are finished.

Sensory soft books are a must have! We have an Eric Carle one that has crinkle pages and he loves it! He will literally hold and play with it forever.

I mentioned before Turner loves his baths! He would stay in there until the water turned cold if we would let him. We have this Fisher Price tub. It has a sling for the first three or so months then you remove it. He sits one way for a few months and when he gets bigger it switches to the other way. Eventually, the green insert comes out completely. We use this tub in a bathtub but it would work in a larger sink. He also loves the little fish that has holes for water to come out. It’s lightweight, easy to clean and I feel like he is very secure in it.

I started using this Hair Spritz from Rowe Casa on a whim when he was about 2 months old. He had lost a ton of hair as babies do. I apply it nightly with a brush after his bath when his hair is damp. I cannot believe how much his hair has grown since I started using it! You can also use this on your own hair which I need to start doing. Click here to shop it and use code MEGAN20 for a discount. (Code only good through December 18th)

Want to shop the items I mentioned in this post? Click here to shop the exact products. You can always shop them in the free liketoknow.it app as well as many other products I love! Do you have any current baby product favorites? I’d love for you to comment what they are below!

Hope you guys have a great weekend!

Love,

Megan