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

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

What I’m Packing In My Diaper Bag

36 weeks over here! Things are getting real. I packed my diaper bag for baby boy last week. I’m not planning on bringing it the hospital but wanted it to be ready for his first doctor’s appointment and anywhere else we may have to go soon after birth. I have been loving my Freshly Picked diaper bag. It’s so roomy and of course super cute! It can be worn as a backpack as pictured above which is most likely how I will wear it.

It can also be worn as a cross body as pictured above. My dogs loved helping me pack the diaper bag! They are good helpers. I also consulted my mom for suggestions on things I should add. I am a first time mom so this is what I am thinking I will need. Here’s what I packed:

*Extra onesie

*Burp cloths

*Diapers

*Diaper Cream

*Wipes

*Premade Similac formula bottles + nipple

*Pacifier

*Swaddle

*Boogie Wipes

*Lotion

*Nail clippers

*Extra mittens

*Extra socks

*Portable changing pad

*Cover for pad

I’m keeping it basic for now and will add more things in coming months when we actually leave the house for more than an hour. Can you think of anything else that should be added for short trips away from home? Please leave me a comment below if you think I am forgetting something!

Even with everything packed the bag is only halfway full at this point! Plenty of room to add more items as he gets older and we need more things with us. I love how sturdy the bag is and that it can grow with us!

My diaper bag comes in so many other great colors if you are not interested in camouflage and black. I love all the different compartments it contains which makes organization a snap! Everything is so easily accessible between the different pockets. Freshly Picked doesn’t often have sales but they have given me a code to share with you for 25% off your purchase: FPXMEGAN25 and you can shop the bag directly here. Have any questions about this Freshly Picked diaper bag? Leave them below and I’ll be glad to answer them!

Love,

Megan

35 Week Bumpdate

We are exactly 30 days from Turner’s due date! I wanted to give an update over the past few weeks of my pregnancy. My bump has grown quite a bit! I’ve gained 12 pounds total during pregnancy so far and baby boy was weighing 4 pounds at the last ultrasound a few weeks ago. We had a bit of a scare at our 32 week appointment as my fundal measurement was 2 weeks behind for the first time. We were sent for an ultrasound and gratefully everything was all right. Baby boy was just curled up in a comfortable position which threw the measurements off! It was so amazing to see him for the first time since our 18 week anatomy scan. He was opening and closing both his eyes and mouth plus playing with the umbilical cord! Starting next week we begin to go to the doctor weekly as we begin cervical checks. It is getting very real at this point!

I’ve mentioned before how easy this pregnancy has been for me. I really haven’t truly felt pregnant and uncomfortable until I hit week 34. My right side back pain began to become more frequent and my nightly heartburn got pretty bad. Thankfully I have started different medication suggested by my doctor that has helped so much. The back pain is definitely still there and I use the heating pad as much as possible. My newest symptoms at 35 weeks are right side rib pain and swollen ankles and feet. Neither of which are much fun! Just trying my best to stay positive.

The nursery is basically almost finished at this point. The diaper bag, hospital bags, and nurses baskets are prepared. I’ll be sharing blog posts in the coming weeks on how I packed all three of those. Just need to install the car seat and wait on baby boy to come! I am interested to see if he comes early, on time, or late. I was born late and my husband was early so it could go either way!

Looking forward to the coming weeks and praying for a safe delivery and baby.

Love,

Megan

Hospital Bag Packing List

Obviously I am a first time mom who has never delivered a baby therefore take my packing advice with a grain of salt. I’ll definitely do an updated what we actually used post after baby is here. I also would encourage you to check with your doctor and the hospital on current policies due to everything rapidly changing with COVID. I will also mention I am a chronic overpacker and just feel more comfortable having everything possible. It somehow eases my anxiety. The current policy at the hospital I will deliver at is only one support person which will be my husband. He is allowed to come and go but will probably only go to the car or pick up food delivery from the door. I really prefer to have him with me since I will be alone otherwise. I packed with all of this in mind.

Luggage I packed in for myself, husband and baby: Samsonite Hardsided Carry-On and Tory Burch tote. I did include two reusable shopping bags within the suitcase in order to carry anything else home we acquire during the stay.

Packing List for Mom

  • Hospital gown: I’m fully aware of how extra this is. Obviously this truly isn’t a necessity but I ended up getting this one and washed it before so it would hopefully be more comfortable. I’m really picky about textures on my skin with fabric so I felt like this might help especially since who knows how long I’ll have to wear it for.
  • Two button up night gowns. Both in dark colors and button up. I have one long sleeve and one short sleeve. They’re my favorite pajamas!
  • Silk robe
  • Sleep mask
  • Barefoot dreams cardigan
  • Maternity underwear, two pairs of socks with grips, and bras
  • Dollar store flip flops for shower shoes
  • Maxi, slip and Birkenstocks for going home
  • Basic toiletries: soap, lotion, deodorant, toothpaste, toothbrush, extra contacts/case/solution, glasses, face wash, makeup wipes, aquaphor lip balm, hairbrush and minimal makeup products.
  • Daily medications

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

Packing List for Baby:

Miscellaneous Packing List:

I started packing my bag at 35 weeks slowly and putting things in. As I have gotten closer to the end of my pregnancy I have put mostly everything in except the things I still need until we actually go to the hospital. I used gallon sized ziplock bags as I always do to pack everything like outfits for easy access. I love doing this because you can put dirty items back inside the bags without getting anything clean exposed to it. I also roll everything as I put it into the ziplocks to use every inch of space. I put the things we wouldn’t necessarily need during the delivery in the suitcase including baby’s things. In non-COVID times I would probably leave the suitcase in the car as I am aware you do often change rooms a few times until recovery. The tote is packed with things my husband or I might need during delivery including chargers, snacks, medication, and toiletries that way they are easy to access.

Obviously, everything I have packed isn’t necessary. In fact, you could literally show up with your ID and insurance information. The hospital gives you the things you actually need. I hope that my lists gives you some ideas of what you might want to pack for your own stay. Moms, did I miss anything? If so please let me know below in the comments!

Love,

Megan

2nd Trimester Bumpdate

I’m officially in my third trimester as of last week. I am currently 29 weeks as of this Saturday! (Pictured above. Dress is last year from Vici Collection but they have it again this year in a sage green. It is not maternity and I am wearing a small.) I wanted to give an update of how my second trimester went and on how baby Turner is doing so far.

(Pictured above at 16 weeks) I entered into my second trimester in January around the time we announced our pregnancy on social media. My biggest pregnancy symptoms throughout this trimester were exhaustion, headaches, and acid reflux. I tried everything known to man for the headaches. They were everyday pretty much as soon as the second trimester began. When I was still and not moving they weren’t has bad but that’s not really an option when you’re a middle school teacher. I just pushed through the best I could everyday and tried to be grateful this was the worst pregnancy symptom I had. Thankfully they started to get less frequent in March and by the end of the second trimester they were gone. I feel like I’m always tired and have acid reflux even when not pregnant so those two symptoms didn’t really bother me. Overall, I would say I had a pretty easy second trimester and I feel very blessed to be able to say that!

(Pictured above at 19 weeks) We had our anatomy scan around this time and Turner measured almost exactly to the day on all of his measurements. I had so much anxiety of the appointment that I was such a relief to get good news and see him moving around a ton on the ultrasound.

(Pictured above at 20 weeks) I didn’t do as good of a job as I had originally planned during the second trimester of documenting each week in photos. Honestly, it’s because I wasn’t showing much so I felt kind of silly taking photos. We were also traveling a ton because in February we found out we would be moving before the baby was born. If you saw my last post then you know that we sold our current house and bought another in March back in home in Texas. Then everything got worse with COVID and the entire state of Arkansas schools went to online schooling. The county we lived in had the first case in the state and gradually was seeing many more cases confirmed. We closed on our new house at the end of March and decided to go ahead and move. My husband felt like it would be better to get me close to our families and my new doctor back home that would be delivering the baby. I had been starting to get pretty bad anxiety with everything happening plus just pregnancy in general and I can honestly tell you that once we got settled in our new home it greatly reduced.

(Pictured above at 25 weeks) A major positive of being in our new house is that we’ve been able to begin on the nursery. We have a crib and bookcase put together so far and are working on the dresser. Other than some decor and accent pieces we just have quite a bit of organizing to do in his closet and we will be ready for his arrival! It has been nice having extra time to do this that we had not planned on originally having.

(Pictured at 27 weeks above) I had my first visit with my new doctor who actually was my doctor before I moved so just new to this pregnancy. I was tested for gestational diabetes and do not have it which was a huge blessing! I have gained 9 pounds so far and Turner is measuring exactly perfect to the week. I started feeling him move around 18 weeks and he started moving consistently and more often around 24 weeks. Since then he moves all day everyday and Tyler was finally able to feel him moving! I’m still feeling comfortable even entering the third trimester and feel so grateful for that.

(Pictured above at 28 weeks) Our next appointment will be at 30 weeks and the time is really starting to fly by. We are getting excited and nervous as it becomes more real each day! The only disappointing thing we have experienced so far is having to cancel our original shower date due to COVID. Thankfully, since Turner is not due until mid July we are rescheduling for this summer and hoping things will be better by then.

(Pictured above at 29 weeks) Thank you for allowing me to share our pregnancy journey with you! This has been the most exciting experience of our lives as a married couple and overall we are just so grateful for good health for both Turner and I. We are praying this continues over the next 11 weeks while we prepare to meet him! This time might not look like we had planned due to COVID but we are thanking God for his provision despite what is happening in the world. Nursery posts and things I couldn’t live without during the second trimester are coming this month so make sure to subscribe so you won’t miss them!

Love,

Megan