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

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

Beautiful Oops! Book Review

You may or may not know that before staying home with Turner I was a teacher. For 5 of those years of teaching I taught Fine Arts: Art, Music, Drama to Kindergarten through 5th graders. I absolutely loved it and it was something I was passionate about. One thing I always tried to do when teaching an art lesson was pair it with a piece of children’s literature. My mom discovered a Barney Saltzburg book called “Arlo Needs Glasses” quite a few years back and I started using it with one of my art lessons. This led me to purchasing some of his other books like “A Little Bit of Oomph” and “Beautiful Oops!” and incorporating them into my lessons in the classroom. 5th graders usually do not care much for read aloud but they would beg me to reread these books to them because of all the cool elements! I was recently gifted another copy of “Beautiful Oops!” from Workman Publishing (@workmanpub) and have been reading it to Turner. He is just beginning to be able to really see and recognize colors and shapes and he was mesmerized by the illustrations!

A cool feature of the book is that it has pop-outs, flaps to life, overlays and more! It really gets your attention and keeps it on each page. Even though Turner is only two months old literacy is something that is not only important to me as a former teacher but also now as his mom. I love stories that have a positive message and lesson behind them. Beautiful Oops! is all about taking mistakes and making them into something else thats positive. I love the creativity behind each mistake it uses as an example and how it really encourages readers to think outside the box.

I have seen first hand in the art room how hard kids can be on themselves when something does not turn out as they have visualized. I always tried to take those instances as an opportunity to teach about being gentle with ourselves and making their “mistake” into something else! We always also talked about not being perfect because no one is. Today, with social media and our constant need for our self image to look a certain way it is more important than ever to teach children to learn from mistakes and use them to create something positive. Want to get a copy of this book for your own children or classroom? “Beautiful Oops!” is on sale wherever books are sold. #beautifuloops #beautifuloopsbook

Love,

Megan

Month 2: Most Used Baby Products

Turner is two months old today and time has certainly flown! His little personality is really starting to shine through. He’s usually pretty happy unless he wants to eat or has a wet diaper! Today, I am sharing our most used baby products for month two of his life. You can shopping all of these products by screenshooting the above photo and/or visiting my liketoknow.it!

We had a small bout of baby acne and completely banished it in about three days with Tubby Todd’s All Over Ointment! I applied it to his face each night after bath at bedtime and saw improvements in the baby acne immediately. It can be used for a variety of things on babies so it is a great product to keep in your diaper caddy! A little goes a long way so it will last a long time.

I debated not adding this because it is kind of gross but cradle cap is very common in babies. It is basically a flakey scalp. Thankfully Turner had a very mild case of it but we got this Cradle Cap System from Fridababy and used it twice over the course of a few days and it completely went away. We just did it as a part of bath time. It has not come back yet but we will keep this on hand in case it does.

This may truly be my number 1 baby product of all time. No exaggeration. The Boppy Lounger is SO affordable and we use it every single day. It is not for sleeping but rather a place for baby to lounge when you need a hands free moment. The heavier Turner gets the more thankful I am for this! The fabric is easy to wipe down and the pillow itself is machine washable. It comes in several different prints. This would be a great baby gift if you do not know what to get someone because it will definitely get used!

This is one of those little things that actually makes a huge difference! The Baby Bump Brush is an easier and more sanitary way of applying diaper cream. We have not had a diaper rash yet but we do use Aquaphor at night where the diaper meets the skin on either side since it gets red and we want to keep it from getting irritated. We use this brush to apply it and it saves our hands from having to be coated in it. It is super easy to clean as well!

What do you do when you do not want to keep holding your baby or need your hands free? Wear them! The Ergo 360 Omni Carrier is so comfortable for adults and baby. As an infant you have them facing you until their neck control gets better and then they can face out and even ride on your back. It is a little tricky to get into without another person but it is doable since I have done it before. Turner goes right to sleep in this thing 99% of the time! Our friends all have these and love them too!

We have a couple of baby items that are 4 months and up only because they need better neck control. This Huggapod supports your baby so they can begin using things like this sit me up now! We only use it for about 15 minutes a day but Turner loves to sit up and watch us make dinner. It can be used in high chairs and really anything that your baby is not quite strong enough to sit in unsupported yet. The front and back pieces can eventually be used separately when they need less support.

If you have any questions about any products I have listed for this month comment below and let me know! I will be glad to answer.

Love,

Megan

Most Used Baby Items: Month 1

Our sweet Turner was one month old yesterday! We’ve got a month of parenting in the books and I’m not sure we know that much more than when we started but we are certainly trying to figure it out as we go. I wanted to share the main baby items that have made our life a little easier with an infant this first month. My plan is to share products monthly that we found helpful. There are so many “must haves” out there that it is hard to know what you really need. Obviously, nothing I’m sharing is an absolute “must have” but rather things we found helpful during our first month with Turner. You can shop all the items I am sharing on the free liketoknow.it app: www.liketoknow.it/whenpigsflyblog.

Babyshusher – Admittedly, I did not even pick this up the first week or two until I got suggestions from other moms to try it. It makes the “shush” noise over and over in either 15 or 30 minute increments. I started trying it when we wanted to put Turner down to nap or sleep for the night or even after night feedings. It definitely helps along with rocking since the sound mimics the womb. It is also great because it is extremely portable. We use it everyday at different times and the batteries are still going.

4Moms Mamaroo Swing: This is one of those items I had heard mixed things on. Some babies like it and others hate it. It is pretty expensive as well as takes up a lot of space. Luckily, I was able to purchase it secondhand from a friend. Turner absolutely loves it especially the car ride setting! He will often fall asleep in it. It has different ride settings and sounds. This is a must have for me and truthfully I would be fine paying full price for it now since it has worked so well for him.

BabyBrezza Formula Pro: If you are formula feeding this is an absolute must. It is pricey but for the convenience it is worth it. It is basically a Keurig for formula. You add distilled water and powdered formula and it will make the bottle for you with the press of a button. You choose room temperature or warm along with the ounces desired. There is nothing like pressing a button at 3 am and having a bottle in 10 seconds. It also reduces gas and other stomach issues due to air bubbles since the bottle does not have to be shaken. My only complaint and you have to clean the funnel every four bottles and truthfully you need to clean the entire machine a time or two a week to keep it working its best. I would only purchase this if you are exclusively formula feeding!

Fisher Price Kick & Play Piano Mat: I call this the ugly mat. It’s hideous but my son absolutely loves it! It plays music and grows with them as they get older. We do tummy time on this mat as well. If you only buy one play thing for your infant this should be it!

SNOO Bassinet: I really do not think we could survive without this. I will do an in-depth review after we have been using it longer on here but so far it has been amazing. It is a smart bassinet that rocks your baby when they need soothing using movement and sound. It has an app connected to it that monitors sleep habits. The claim as that it will have your child sleeping through the night by the time they are done with it at 6 months which is when you wean and transfer them to a regular crib. The only downside to this bassinet is the price tag. It is very expensive but we were fortunate enough to borrow this from my sister in law. If buying it is not in the budget you can also rent it a month at a time as well as purchase it secondhand at a cheaper price. If you do purchase it the resale value is great and they resell easily. We absolutely love the SNOO and highly recommend it to everyone. It is worth it!

Magnetic Me Pajamas: These are the softest pajamas I have ever felt! The best part is that there are no zippers or snaps to fumble with in the middle of the night. All of the sleepers and gowns use magnets to keep them closed. We especially have loved the gowns for nighttime because they keep his legs and feet warm without socks plus they are so easy for changing him! We like the pajamas for lounging during the day. They have tons of cute prints for boys and girls. They are a little pricer than Carters, Target etc but I would personally rather have less pajamas that were these and just wash them. We find ourselves pretty disappointed when all the Magnetic Me pajamas are dirty. Needless to say I do laundry quite frequently so that does not happen!

What is the one item you could not live without the first month of your little one’s life? Let me know below in the comments! I know there are tons of other amazing products out there I am sure I do not even know about. If you have a question about any of the products I shared today feel free to ask! Remember, you can shop any of these items in the liketoknow.it app and even save them to your favorites for the future!

Love,

Megan

Postpartum Essentials

I’m sharing my must haves for postpartum today. Probably the least “fun” post I’ve written so far but definitely the most practical! I will mention I had a vaginal birth with a 2nd degree tear and some stitches. Depending on your labor and birth your recovery and postpartum period might look different from mine. The things I’m sharing today are obviously just suggestions and things I felt that made my recovery more comfortable. You can shop all of the products I’m sharing by going to the free LIKEtoKNOW.it app: Shop my post

Things to keep in basket in the restroom for easy access:

  • Mesh underwear – the hospital will provide these but I liked the FridaMom brand much better. I will say I felt like I only needed these the first week or so.
  • Pads – I liked the large hospital ones for the beginning of my time at home and then transitioned to regular pads.
  • Always Discreet Disposable Underwear – you technically don’t need both the mesh underwear and these but I found that the Always ones were so much more convenient especially when you are getting up all night with a newborn. They are kind of pricey so I would suggest just getting one package to see if you like them. I ended up getting a second package because they were so easy to use.
  • Flushable wipes – you will want these instead of using toilet paper at first. Do not flush them though because they will eventually mess up your plumbing!
  • FridaMom peri bottle – the one the hospital gives you is nothing compared to this one. It’s amazing. If you only get one thing for postpartum and decide to use the hospital stuff for the rest then make it this! I promise you need it.
  • FridaMom pad liners – I liked these so much better than the round Tucks Pads. They are actually shaped like a pad so they fit perfectly. I rotated these and the next product for the first week or two.
  • Dermoplast Spray – they will give you this at the hospital but I ordered extra. I probably went through a can and a half total. Rotating the spray and witch hazel liners listed above helps speed your healing process and keeps you comfortable!
  • FridaMom ice pads – this was my other favorite product. I loved these so much I ordered another box of them. I used these twice a day. Once in the morning and evening. This is a more expensive alternative to padsicles. I just wanted something convenient that would help with swelling and recovery!

Many of the items I mentioned come as part of the FridaMoms Kit which I was gifted from my sister in law. It also had some perineal cooling foam but I personally didn’t use it much. I found the other items I listed more convenient. If you don’t want to purchase the whole kit all the items listed above can be bought via Amazon separately.

Other items to have on hand:

  • A pillow to sit on at all times at least the first week. Trust me – you will want it. I used my pregnancy pillow most of the time.
  • Nightgowns or other easy access clothing. It was so much easier to take care of myself when I didn’t have to worry about getting off pants or shorts. I love the Star’s Above line from Target and rotated my long sleeve and shortsleeved ones.
  • Ibuprofen or other pain reliever. I was given pain pills but I only took them for 3 days once we returned home because they made me feel too groggy and I truthfully wasn’t in enough pain to need them after that. I switched to over the counter pain reliever after that for the first week and then didn’t take anything after that. Listen to your body though and take whatever medications as long as you feel like you need them!

Supplements to take:

  • Colace – they will give you this in the hospital but you need to continue taking it at home. It is a stool softener. Regardless of the type of birth you have you will want this to make sure you don’t have to strain when the time comes. You can take up to 3 times a day which I suggest and then taper down to one time per day once the first week goes by. I also suggest drinking tons of water!
  • Garden of Life Probiotic – I took their prenatal one during pregnancy and then switched to the Women’s Daily after giving birth. This will help with your digestive system!
  • Pink Stork Postpartum Mood Support – this has vitamins to help your body transition as it gets rid of any lingering hormones.

Other bits of advice:

  • Make sure you are getting a shower once or even twice a day. I know it’s hard with a newborn and you’re tired but I truly feeling like keeping good hygiene will help prevent infection and speed your recovery process. I’m a clean freak though and love showers so this was easy for me. If that’s not your thing still make sure your partner watches your baby so you can make sure you get clean daily!
  • Walk as much as possible! Even if it’s just around your house. This truly will help you so much.
  • You might still be swollen from fluids after. My legs and feet were extremely swollen and somewhat painful. This took a week to subside. I tried to drink tons of water and keep them elevate. Moving around also helps!

Things I didn’t use:

  • Postpartum wrap – I bought one from Amazon and used it once. These are supposed to help your stomach and everything go back but they gave me really painful stomach cramps so I never put it on again.
  • Sitz bath salts – I was told I couldn’t take a bath by my OB until after my 6 week check up.

Overall, postpartum recovery has not been as difficult as I thought. I had a fairly easy pregnancy, quick induction, labor and routine vaginal birth which I know helps. Once you get through the first few days you will feel so much better! Let anyone who offers to help you do so. Don’t feel like you have to have it all together and get it all done. Feel free to ask me any questions about post part recovery! I’ll be glad to answer.

Love,

Megan

What I Actually Used From My Hospital Bag

Today I’m sharing the things are actually used from my hospital bag plus the things I could have left at home.

Packing List for Mom

  • Hospital gown: I loved having my own gown that had been already washed in my own detergent and was soft. I got so many compliments from the nurses. I threw it away once I showered and changed after birth. There was no saving it which was fine since I planned to get rid of it after.
  • Two button up night gowns. Both in dark colors and button up. I have one long sleeve and one short sleeve. I only wore the short sleeve one. The first night I was in the hospital gown actually giving birth and the second night I was in my own night gown. I suggest short sleeve also because they have to be able to get to both of your arms easily every few hours to check vitals and sometimes give you things through your IV.
  • Silk robeWore this to take some photos of us together. Otherwise did not wear because it was so cold in our room.
  • Sleep mask – did not use.
  • Barefoot dreams cardiganit was freezing in our post part room so I highly recommend a sweater.
  • Maternity underwear, two pairs of socks with grips, and bras – did not use the underwear since they give you the mesh kind. Did use the socks and only wore the bra to actually leave the hospital!
  • Cheap fuzzy slippersadded these last minute so I wouldn’t be walking around in my socks only and getting back into bed after that with dirty feet. Threw the slippers away and got a new pair.
  • Dollar store flip flops for shower shoes – used and threw away!
  • Maxi, slip and Birkenstocks for going home – wore all three leaving hospital! I wore the same shoes into the hospital and out. They are rubber so they could easily be sanitized. Plus they fit my swollen feet!
  • Basic toiletries: soap, lotion, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, extra contacts/case/solution, glasses, face wash, makeup wipes, aquaphor lip balm, hairbrush and minimal makeup products. Used everything listed here.
  • Daily medications – did use
  • FridaMom Peri Bottle – added at the last minute and did use! If you do not bring anything else at least bring this. It is a must have and so much better than the hospital one.

Packing List for Dad

  • Two comfortable outfits (athletic shorts, joggers, tee shirts)
  • Sweatshirt
  • Boxers socks
  • Shower shoes
  • Going home outfit (golf polo and shorts)
  • Basic toiletries: we will share most of the things above but added shampoo/hair stuff for him, any medication he might need (Tylenol or Tums…hospital will not dispense these to spouses). I put the toiletries in a gallon ziplock for easy access inside our tote.
  • Air pods

He used everything listed! My husband said his biggest thing was to make sure you have a sweatshirt and sweatpants because of how cold it was in there. I think he also wished he had a pair of slippers as well instead of just his sneakers.

Miscellaneous Packing List:

  • Instax Mini Camera + Filmdid use!
  • Portable White Noise Machinenever used at all.
  • Stroller Fan (for me for labor!)used when I was in a lot of pain during contractions pre epidural!
  • Tripod/Ringlight (no one will be there to take photos for us)took the photos you see in this post! Highly recommend.
  • Two extra long chargersused them and very convenient. The outlets are in random places.
  • File for documentsdid not use. They give you documents in folders for you and baby.
  • Insulated cups with tops and straws – the nurses would put ice or water in these for us.
  • Insurance info and IDs – a must have!
  • Snacks – definitely another must have. My husband went to go to get something to eat the first night and they had already put the food up. He was glad we had snacks!
  • Electrolyte packets for water – did not use because all I wanted was Sprite after delivery. I ended up bringing some with me at the last minute plus a few huge water bottles of Essentia.
  • Bose speaker for music – never used this since my labor and pain rapidly got worse.
  • Two cheap grey towels and washcloths to throw away after use – we used these and threw them away! Highly recommend.
  • Cheap fuzzy blanket and old pillow to throw away after use – absolutely recommend both of these!
  • Two snack baskets for the nurses (one for AM and one for PM) – these were a huge hit with the labor nurses! I made a mistake by only having two baskets though. I really needed two more for postpartum. Next time I will do four snack baskets for the nurses.
  • Car seat (will stay in car until we need it) – my husband went and got this once we were discharged and brought it up to the room. He ran all our bags down first so we only have the baby and cart seat left to take down. They make you go out in a wheelchair!

Packing List for Baby:

  • Personalized Hello Tagused for photos
  • Two gowns, mittens, hats, and socks – used them all because he spit up on some.
  • Two swaddles – used only one of them. The hospital gives you swaddles but of course I wanted ours for photos.
  • Going home outfitput this on right before we left the hospital.
  • Pacifierdid not use because they give you one!
  • Baby Book (For feet stamping)did not even think to get this out when I was in labor but they give you a card with the footprints stamped on it you can add to the book.
  • Personalized Door Hanger + Calligraphy Pen to write in info – did use.
  • Letterboarddid use.
  • Burp cloths – did not use because they give them to you at the hospital.

COVID DETAILS

I delivered at St. Michael’s Hospital in Texarkana and cannot say enough good things about the entire staff. I had the best nurses, doctor and experience. I cannot recommend giving birth there enough. The policy when we delivered as of July 23, 2020 was only one support person. That meant my husband was the only one allowed for the durations of our stay. He was allowed to leave which he only did to go out to the car or meet our parents at the entrance for food. I’m going to be honest, when I heard my mom would not be allowed I was crushed. I wanted her there as well and had always assumed she would be. While we missed having our parents there to see him as soon as Turner was born it was nice just having the time with the three of us. I had a vaginal delivery and was there about 45 hours total from induction check-in to discharge. I also was tested for COVID via blood test when I arrived and it was negative. They did not test my husband. We did have to wear masks whenever anyone was in the room or if you left the room but I took mine off when we were pushing. I’m not sure if that was allowed but no one said anything to me and honestly I cannot imagine two hours of pushing with a mask on. Other than masks and no visitors that was the only difference I could tell during our stay due to COVID.

Do you have any questions about what I used at the hospital or what it is like to deliver during COVID? Let me know in the comments and I’ll be glad to answer!

Love,

Megan

Turner’s Birth Story

I’m so excited to be sharing Turner’s birth story today! It was such a positive experience overall. I have loved reading other people’s birth stories throughout my pregnancy. I hope by me sharing my own it will help put other moms to be at ease and get them excited for the birth of their own baby!

I decided with my doctor after my due date be induced electively because I had been 1 cm dilated with a rock hard cervix for weeks. I’d been having contractions for days but nothing consistent. The induction was scheduled for when I was 40 weeks and 4 days. We checked into the hospital on July 22 at 5:00 pm. By 6:30 pm I was in a bed, with IV fluids and given one dose of Cytotec orally. I was checked and was 1 cm, 50% effaced and baby’s head was low. Around 8 pm contractions picked up slightly becoming more painful and I got a little nauseous. They gave me popsicles and ice chips and I felt better. Around 9:30 pm I began having back labor. Contractions and back labor progressively begin getting worse around 11 pm and I was given pain medication through the IV. It did nothing for my pain. They checked me and I was only at a 2. It continued to get worse to the point I felt like I was going to pass out and get sick at the same time. Called the nurse and said we had to do something. She called the anesthesiologist even though they don’t like to do the epidural before a 4 cm. I was given another bag of fluid before he could come and place the epidural. At 12:45 am he came and gave me my epidural. My husband had to leave and the poor nurse that had to help me be still was an angel. I was in the worst pain of my life because of back labor. I kept apologizing to everyone because I was SO embarrassed I was getting an epidural at only 2 cm dilated. I didn’t feel the numbing shot or epidural go in at all. It took the first try. She checked me before inserting the catheter and I was 8 cm dilated and almost completely effaced. The nurse was shocked and went to get my doctor. That means all the pain I felt was my body transitioning from 2-8 cm in a very short period of time. In the mean time I had to lay on my left side to get it numb. It took a little while but it worked. My husband came back and couldn’t believe it! My doctor comes in and says we will be pushing soon! He in complete shock as well. I’m feeling amazing with the epidural and so glad I trusted my gut! If I hadn’t gotten it when I did I probably wouldn’t have been able to at all! We started pushing at 3:00 am. Pushing is no joke. It doesn’t hurt but it’s just hard mentally and physically. It was just my husband, nurse and I pushing for an hour. My doctor checked on me and said I just needed to keep working! Baby had turned sunny side up at some point which explained my back labor. It almost meant after every contraction and set of pushes he would slip back in some. At 4:30 my doctor came in and checked on us again. He called in the nursery and other nurses needed for delivery then got gowned up and said it was go time.

I pushed out Turner David Griffin sunny side up at 4:47 am and had to stop when he was almost all the way out because my water was behind baby boy and never broke all the way. He swallowed some amniotic fluid and had to be cleared of that and have a little oxygen. His head was also a little cone shaped because he was stuck for so long. He was fine in a few minutes though! I had a 2nd degree tear and received stitches. Overall, my actual labor process was only 10 hours long which is great for an induction plus first time mom delivering. I was so upset about having to be induced and not going into labor on my own but it was truly the best experience ever. I am so happy with it and feeling so thankful God guided us to the decision and allowed us to have a positive induction and healthy baby boy! We are so grateful Turner is here with us and we are loving being parents so far.

Third Trimester Bumpdate

I cannot believe it’s finally my due date today! (July 18th) Pregnancy is a journey that somehow seems fast and slow at the same time. This baby boy has been 22 months in the making for us since it took us a year to get pregnant. We feel so thankful to be meeting our little miracle soon!

28 Weeks pictured above! This is about the time I really started to show and had an actual bump. It was so exciting to see it and made it more real.

29 Weeks pictured above. This was the weekend our shower was originally scheduled for but COVID canceled and rescheduled it.

30 Weeks pictured above. Third trimester was when I actually started to truly feel pregnant. The beginning of the trimester was fairly uneventful for me other than a growing bump. We spent lots of time getting the nursery ready for baby.

Week 30 pictured again. I somehow did not get a week 31 photo.

Week 32 pictured above. My rib pain started around this time and has worsened as the weeks have gone on. This was also the week we had a scare at the doctor. I was measuring two weeks behind for the first time in my whole pregnancy. We were sent for an ultrasound and found that baby boy was balled up and was completely fine. His position just threw the measurements off!

Week 33 we took our maternity photos! This is something I always swore I’d never do. I couldn’t imagine wanting photos of me big and pregnant. Once I was actually pregnant I couldn’t imagine not documenting this time! I am so glad we did them and especially before it got too hot and I got too uncomfortable. I highly recommend doing your maternity photos before 36 weeks for both of those reasons!

Week 34 pictured above! The bump really started growing around this time and my rib pain started to get extremely uncomfortable. My ankles and feet also started swelling around this time. I was pretty disappointed about that because I thought I was going to make it through pregnancy without that lovely symptom.

Week 35 pictured above!

Week 36 pictured above! My friends gave us a shower outside and it was beautiful. We began our weekly appointment at the doctor. I measured two weeks behind for only the second time in my pregnancy. We were sent for an ultrasound but unfortunately this time he wasn’t in the wrong position. He really was measuring behind especially his stomach. He was weighing about 5 pounds at this time and I was really upset about finding all this out. I felt like somehow I failed him. My doctor explained that I am a small person which often means smaller baby. He was still within 2 weeks of the normal range and not to worry. I concentrated on getting as much protein as possible after this to hopefully help even though my doctor insisted that your body is just going to do pregnancy its own way regardless in terms of weight gain and baby growth.

Week 37 pictured above. This began the most uncomfortable and longest part of my whole pregnancy. Check out my severely swollen ankles above. I also began to not be able to sleep at night due to rib pain and general discomfort. I was crossing my fingers for him to arrive any day!

Week 38 pictured above! We were still going to the weekly doctor appointments. I wasn’t shower any signs of him coming soon at this time at all.

Week 39 pictured above. I just knew he would come this week but no dice. Found out at our weekly appointment that I was dilated to 1 cm but nothing else happening. We got to see him on ultrasound and he was estimated to weigh 6 pounds and 14 ounces which was amazing news for us! Since week 37 I have eaten pineapple (I actually eat it everyday anyway because I love it), walked, bounced and done labor activation exercises on the exercise ball, eaten spicy food (I do this anyway!), drank Red Raspberry Leaf tea, ridden the Peloton as much as possible, and nested. Apparently none of those things are going to induce labor for me. This last few days of pregnancy as been mentally exhausting because I keep waiting for labor to begin. I’ve only had some cramping and Braxton hicks. We go to the doctor Monday and will likely set an induction date at this point. I am disappointed because I really wanted my body to do it on its own but ultimately just really want him here.

Worst third trimester symptoms: acid reflux (was given the okay by my doctor to take OTC medication nightly at week 32 and it basically vanished since then), swollen ankles, swollen hands (began at 39+4 during walking so I had to stop), sleepless nights due to anxiety and uncomfortableness and excruciating rib pain that nothing helps. I gained 14 pounds total during this pregnancy which I am pretty happy with since many weeks I gained nothing and even lost some weeks despite eating plenty.

Now, we are just waiting to meet our sweet boy hopefully next week sometime! I’ve loved sharing my journey here on my blog and cannot waist to continue sharing affordable outfits, home decor, motherhood and life in general in the future! I would love your prayers for a healthy delivery and baby. Let me know below if you went past your due date below in the comments!

Love,

Megan