Sunday, July 24, 2016

Diaper bag essentials

There are a few items on my list of things I hate about having a baby.  That list includes car seats, diaper bags, spit up and blow outs...oh and sleepless nights.  But I'm not kidding when I say that I can now check diaper bag off the list.
It's taken me two kids and countless amounts of diaper bags to finally figure out what I need IN my bag and what I need my bag to do for me.  At first I started out with one of those giant hideous diaper bags and it was chocked full of an endless amount of what nots that I never used.  Plus it was like a black hole in there.  I'd empty it out about once a month and would find a slew of things I thought I had lost. Ha ha ha.  It just didn't work.  Then I thought I'd try out one of those name brand diaper bags that looked super cute and had an over the shoulder strap cause it was stylish and cute and yet it didn't function at all the way I wanted it to.  It constantly fell over spilling all of my essentials all over the car, dirty floor, and store cart.  It was so frustrating that once I was out of the diaper bag stage I immediately donated it so someone else could suffer through the awfulness of that bag.  Maybe that was mean of me?  Now that I have my Kiki Lu diaper bag I feel like I'm not driving myself nuts by having to carry around all the goods my baby needs.  This bag is amazing!! It's not only stylish and beautiful but it's completely functional for all of my needs.  It's made from a durable faux leather that's easy to clean and it has ample amounts of pockets and zippers to keep things in their more black hole.  It has straps to wear as a backpack, which is one of my favorite things because, hello, hands free!! But it comes with a strap to wear as an over the shoulder option too. Anything that has more than one option is fine by me!

Now let's talk about what's IN my diaper bag.  Once again, because this is my third baby I've narrowed my needs down to a few essentials.  One of the reasons is obviously because I don't actually need a million things in my bag.  I used to have 3 or 4 burp clothes, bottles...even though I was breastfeeding, like 5 diapers, 2 outfits for baby, a water bottle, toys, and the list goes on and on.  It was seriously ridiculous and my bag got so stinking heavy.  

I've narrowed it down to just a few essentials that I know I need and baby needs and that's it!  First off is the obvious...stuff to change diapers.  I like to keep either a onsie or a cute romper at hand in case baby has a blow out.  Depending on how long I'll be out of the house is how I determine the amount of diapers I'll need.  For a quick trip to the store or a meal out I pack 1 to 2 diapers, longer trips mean more diapers.  I also have been loving my gathre mat.  A friend gave me this mat and it has made changing baby girl while out and about so much easier.  I don't have to lay her on the nasty changing station in the public restroom cause I have this mat as a barrier.  It's easy to wipe down and sanitize and it folds up to about the size of a diaper.  I'm a lover of Huggies wipes and these new wipe holders are awesome.  They used to have the hard cover ones and they just didn't work well and would sometimes not seal and then you were left with dry wipes.  No bueno! These bags are easy to refill and have super cute patterns to match whatever your style.  I stuff all of these goodies in a zipper top bag (mine is from Old Navy, pictured in the top photo) and allows all of the diaper changing needs to be in one spot so I don't have to take the whole diaper bag into the bathroom with me.  I just grab the zipper top bag and I have everything I need.  Easy peasy.

Tubby Todd is my new favorite baby brand.  After a bout of nasty diaper rash with Daisy, and nothing was working, we tried the All Over Ointment and in a day it was completely gone...not better but GONE!  This stuff is not only great for diaper rash but we use it for cradle cap, baby acne, and dry skin.  It's seriously a must have for baby!  The Dream Cream is for momma's dry hands, cause we all know how often we wash our hands...they get all dry and nasty and this stuff does the job at moisturizing without leaving an oily feeling behind. 

Lastly, let's talk fabric.  I, of course, carry burp clothes with me cause we all know...spit happens.  But I also keep with me a swaddle blanket.  Now usually it's draped over baby girl's legs in the car seat but on occasion I grab one quickly as I run out the door and stuff it in my diaper bag.  I also always have a wrap baby carrier with me.  When it comes to having three kiddos with me it's just easier to have baby in the wrap so I can have both hands free to shop, grab my kids before they run out into the road, or hold their tiny hands. I may be outnumbered but at least I've got both of my hands free to keep them all close. 

I'd never claim to be an expert diaper bag packer but I will say I've definitely had my fair share of lessons learned and because of that, my diaper bag packing has improved.  Maybe your bag looks a bit different than mine and that's fine but I'm pretty sure all of us moms can agree that all of our kids are different, their needs are different, and our own must haves differ.  Being a momma is rough but now a days these handy diaper bags make life a little easier.  Can I get an AMEN?

Diaper Bag : Kiki Lu Designs
Zipper Top Bag : Old Navy(similar)
Romper : Rad Revolution
Baby Creams : Tubby Todd
Baby Wrap : Stekki Bebe
Baby Blanket : Captain Silly Pants
Changing Pad : Gathre

Newborn Milk Bath Photoshoot

I already feel like my little Daisy is getting jipped in the picture department.  I'm just too busy these days holding her, dealing with house duties, and taking care of her sisters.  So my sweet gal doesn't get her spotlight in the photo department very often.  So when I came across a picture of a milk bath newborn shoot I knew it would be so much fun to replicate it in a way with my Daisy.  Luckily I have a talented friend who I also knew would be so on board for the idea.

Catherine I met through my shop on Etsy.  She is a super talented photographer and she is so comfortable to take photos with.  I am so honored that she enjoys taking pictures of my little family and is so willing to hear my wild ideas.  I showed her the picture I loved of the milk bath newborn shoot and she immediately got what I was aiming for.  I wanted all the little details of Daisy.  I wanted to capture the bond Daisy and I have and somehow, through these photos, see how sugary sweet Daisy's personality is.  Well, it's pretty obvious from these beautiful photos that Catherine was able to capture all that I wanted and more.  Enjoy, and if you're wanting these same pictures with your little baby or little ones I'm freely willing to offer up my tub for you!  You can contact Catherine through her Instagram @catherinecallanphoto.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Mom of...THREE?

I was warned over and over again that three kids was going to throw me for a loop.  People had told me that their third was their hardest adjustment.  So when Daisy arrived I was fully prepared to be rocked, but boy was I not ready to be rocked like THIS!

With every baby, I feel like a different lesson was being taught to me.  With my first, slow down.  My second, patience.  And now my third and there's no doubt that Heavenly Father is trying to teach me to let things be.  I'm constantly trying to do it all and it all must be perfect.  I keep my house clean and keep detailed and organized to-do lists.  It's just my nature to want everything to be up to a certain expectation when it comes to how my house is kept.  I can't help it, I just want it all done least in my eyes.  But Daisy's arrival has slowly been teaching me that it's ok to just let things be messy, to-do lists unchecked, and showing up late is A OK.

The other day I FINALLY decided to take time to clean my house.  I nursed Daisy first thing and in the back of my mind I thought 'hurry Daisy quicker, I've got things to do' and it dawned on me that I need to stop and savor these moments with her...and, why in the world am I that eager to clean.  She will soon spread out her feedings and no longer want to be cuddled up close to me and be soothed by the sound of my heartbeat.  She won't be able to fall asleep on my shoulder and my one on one time with her while she eats will be no more.  I think there's a reason why we grow up so fast when we are little and I'm pretty sure it's because God is trying to tell us to pay more attention to all the little and precious moments of parenthood.  If you're a parent I'm sure you've heard countless times how fast time flies.  Before you know it you're kids will be off and married, and while we are still far from that I'm sitting here still in awe that I have a 6 year old.  When did that happen?  I swear it was just yesterday that I was swaddling her up for bed, or at least that's how it feels.  We live in a fast pace world where we are consumed by our phones, Pokemon Go...kill me, and television.  I'm guilty of saying to my kids all too often "hold on just a minute" so I can finish what I'm doing before giving them my full attention.   I refuse to be that absent minded parent.  I'm going to put my phone away more often so when my kids say "mom look at me" I'll be able to quickly and attentively see my children.  There will still be days when I need a break from them.  There will still be times when I hide in the bathroom for a moment alone.  But I know without a doubt that what I want my kids to remember about their childhood is that I was present, not just physically but mentally and emotionally.  My time with them isn't going to be surrounded by big plans, trips, and countless amounts of money spent on their behalf.  It will still be walks to the park and blowing bubbles in the yard, but let's be real kids just want our eyes to be on them and our hearts to be consumed by their cuteness.  

I'm sure the time will come when I get my groove back and things run a bit smoother, but for now things will just have to be hectic and crazy.  I'm not going to get everything I want to get done in one day.  There will be piles of laundry unwashed and dishes in the sink.  Fingerprints on the windows and splatter marks on the mirrors.  The grocery lists will grow and grow before things are crossed off and purchased, but at least I'll know that my time was spent in more important ways.  I'll be cuddling my baby and playing with my kids.  I'll be changing diapers and bathing little bodies.  More time will be spent eating popsicles than wiping down countertops and THAT is what matters most.