Monday, January 28, 2013

::Pregnancy:: What Do I Miss?

It's been 6 weeks since Henley came into our world, early and unexpected. While the time with her has flown by and it doesn't feel like it's already been six weeks, it feels like I was pregnant months ago. All of the discomforts (or physiological discomforts of pregnancy as my doctor called them) and nuisances of being pregnant are a long, lost memory.

The other day as I was soaking in the bath shaving my legs, it occurred to me that not too long ago I was totally winded and sweating after shaving one leg. Oh how quickly we forget! I thought it would be interesting to do a post of things I miss (and don't miss) about being pregnant. It's true that by the end, I was uncomfortable and so excited to meet Henley that I was ready for it all to be over but there are a few things I miss.

I have to say one of the best things about being pregnant is being comfortable with the overall appearance of my body. I wouldn't say I have body confidence issues but like most women, pre-pregnancy I was self conscious about this bump or that bulge and I may or may not have photoshopped a beach photo here or there before posting (shameful I know!). With the pregnancy however, the bigger the better! There's no need to suck it in or look thin. Everyone expects you to gain weight and get bigger. I really loved tracking my bump and wearing form fitting clothes that showed off the bump. 

Now that she is here, I already am finding myself worrying about getting rid of the baby weight and planning my workouts once I get clearance from the doctor (hopefully tomorrow!). I wear clothes that hide my mid-section and I am constantly plastering on as much stretch mark cream as possible to help minimize and fade these marks. (For those that following my pregnancy, you know I didn't get many stretch marks however, it turns out that breast feeding was the little gem that would create all of my stretch marks---well that and the fact that I had some under my belly but I obviously had no idea until about two weeks post-partum.)

Something I obviously miss is Henley being inside of me. Her bumps and wiggles, no matter how uncomfortable, were simply amazing. I loved trying to figure out what she was doing and how she was positioned. I loved dreaming of what she would look like and how she would act. Wondering would she have Teddy's passion for life? My creativity? Would she be tall or short? Have blue eyes or hazel eyes? The ambiguity of everything was amazing! On the flip side obviously, it's the best thing in the world having her here. Seeing her and getting to know her is awesome. She is changing every day, just like she was when she was inside, and I love that and I love learning about her and how to take care of her.

Lastly I miss maternity clothes. I miss the comfort of the elastic bands and I miss maternity leggings (best purchase ever). I also bought some really cute maternity clothes and I'm bummed I won't get to wear these again (or at least for a while!) All of these got packed up yesterday, hopefully I'll be blessed and get to wear them again someday.

Now onto things I don't miss---these are going to be shorter and more to the point as they are pretty obvious.

  • Not being able to paint my toes, shave my legs, pee into a cup without peeing on my hands
  • Bumping my stomach into the grocery cart, my desk at work, the sliding glass doors (since I never opened them wide enough)
  • HEARTBURN! I do not miss this at all. I should let you all know that I had heartburn the whole.entire.time. I had it from the first trimester all of the way to while I was actually pushing. That's right---I had heartburn while I was actually pushing her out!
  • Not being able to have caffeine, sushi, lunch meat, Excedrin
  • Not being able to run long distances and outside
  • Not being able to hug my husband comfortably! (I have been loving the ability to hug Teddy lately!)

Having Henley has been the most exciting, scary, rewarding, and amazing thing I have ever done. I am in awe at what the human body is capable of. I'm so thankful everything went well and we are all healthy and doing great. I'm grateful for friends and family that have been so great about checking in on us, bringing us yummy food, and just being there when I needed a nap, especially in the beginning when I was too stubborn to call for help. I feel I am back to normal and into a solid routine with her which is exciting. 

I'm excited to see where this journey takes us and at the same time, I just want her to stay this little forever. I am already noticing changes in her, she's growing so fast!

Happy Monday, have a great week!!

Mere :-)

Friday, January 18, 2013

::Henley:: One Month Old!

Did I really just type this---one month! I cannot believe little Henley has been in our lives for a whole month. It really feels like just last week that she came into our lives! This month has truly been one of the best times in my life and I know my husband feels the same way. There are days I look at her and am amazed that she is ours.

I was initially thinking that I would do weekly updates for her but I think that may be too frequent so I am going to switch to monthly updates and see how that works instead.

For the monthly updates, I'm going back to the chalkboard---I feel it's only right since we used it to document when she was growing on the inside.


She doesn't go to the doctor again until two months so we weighed her as best as we could. She now weighs 9 pounds.


She's doing great. Her rash cleared up and then we went back to our old ways and the rash came back. We have been airing it out again and it's almost gone. Our plan is to get it 100% cleared and then try some things I have read online.

Cloth diapers don't wick moisture away from their bum like disposables since the chemicals in disposables are what keep the baby dry. Since cloth doesn't have that, we bought fleece liners to use in the diapers. It's a thin piece of fleece that you lay on top of the diaper and that part stays dry against the baby's skin while the rest gets absorbed into the diaper.

The other thing I read doing research is that newborn poo is sometimes too acidic for their skin. I cut out acidic foods this week (tomatoes, berries, etc) hoping that will help. I think her skin will eventually get acclimated to the acidity but until then, I am hoping this routine will help correct the current rash and prevent any new ones.


I think she has figured out her days and nights which I am very happy about. She is getting up three times a night to nurse and then goes right back to bed. She typically naps in the morning and early afternoon but is then wide awake from about 1-6. At first I was bummed she wasn't napping then but I realized I should be grateful she is awake when we are and not at 2am.

She is still sleeping in the Rock n Play. I have attempted the Pack n Play a few times and she can be dead asleep when I put her down and she will be wide awake just laying there when I check on her. I am going to keep trying it out. She doesn't cry or get upset in the Pack n Play, she's just wide awake. 

I'd like to get her into her room in the crib at 6 weeks so this is something I really want to start working on soon.


She is wearing some 0-3 months! The majority of her clothing is Carter's and she is in 0-3 in Carter's but is still wearing newborn in other brands. I am really excited about her being in this bigger size since she has so many cute clothes in this size.

First night in 0-3 sleeper!


Loving mama's milk. I've started pumping once a day in the morning to start building a freezer stash for when I go back to work. It's going pretty well. We are planning to introduce the bottle to her soon, I just need to figure out the best way to do this where she won't reject the breast once she sees how easy a bottle is.

After she eats she is in a total milk coma, cracks me up every time!

Baby Gear Love

This week we had our first successful go in the Moby Wrap. I was ecstatic. We tried it a few weeks ago and she seemed to hate it but the other day, she was fussy and it was right around dinner time so I thought I'd give it a try. I tied it as tight as I could and the minute she was in it all cozy, she was dead asleep. My only concern after that was making sure I didn't drop any of my dinner on her head. :-)

This week she also started to really enjoy the swing. She would go in the swing here and there for short stints but now she will swing for a while awake and even put herself to sleep in it (she is actually asleep in it right now). We have the Little Lamb swing from Fisher Price--it's adorable!

Crying here and there, mainly when she has gas. She will be totally fine and then all of the sudden have a high pinch squeal/cry, then she will burp or fart and be back to normal. I have no complaints on her crying, I feel very blessed.


Henley is becoming quite the social butterfly. On Monday she met a really good friend of mine Tammy. We went to Panera and she was such a good girl. She slept the whole time. We even went to Daddy's work afterwards to meet his co-workers. She was perfect the whole time.

On Wednesday, my team from work came over to meet her. They brought us lunch and visited for a little while. Everyone was excited to meet her. 

Last weekend, we had our first normal "romping" weekend with her, it was great. On Friday, we went shopping to Motherhood so I could get some nursing clothing and bras. Then we went to Five Guys for dinner. On Saturday we were planning to go downtown and take a walk around the river basin. Once we got downtown, we saw it was Bike Night and thought the sounds of revved up Harley's would defeat the purpose of our relaxing stroll. Since we were already out, we decided to eat dinner at one of our favorite Italian restaurants. She slept the entire time. Then on Sunday after visiting Grandma, we went to have some sushi and then to the Gap to spend some Christmas gift cards. She wasn't too interested in shopping (we will have to work on that!) but once Dad took her out of the store and just walked around, she was back to happy status.

I'm getting much more comfortable going out with her alone, feels great to have some normalcy.


Feeling great! I am getting the itch to get back into a workout routine. I'm ready to get back to running and training for a race. I've been looking for one to register for. I can't wait! I tried my old jeans on and they fit and button but I have a muffin top that I am not too fond of so I am going to continue to wear my maternity jeans until I can button those comfortably.


She is really starting to focus on our faces and toys in her play gym. I love seeing her focus. She also makes a ton of funny faces, especially when getting kisses from Dad.

Thanks for stopping by! Have a great weekend!

Mere :-)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

::Random:: Dreams!

Being home these last few weeks with Henley has really got my "dreaming mind" up and running. For the past 10 years or so I have dreamed of owning a bakery. Every time there is a bakery in a movie or a tv show, I am immediately in love.

Since I have been off, despite the craziness of having a newborn, I have taken some time while Henley is sleeping to bake. Just keeping this little bit of normalcy has made me fall in love with baking all over again and therefore my "owning a bakery" dream is alive and kicking, stronger than ever!

This dream I have had is so appealing in so many ways. Since I graduated college in 2006, my entire work life has been a very black and white---accounting doesn't afford much creativity and if it does, well that is where situations such as Enron and WorldCom come into the picture. Creativity and accounting do not mix. Despite being successful in accounting, I have a very creative mind and I know owning a bakery would be a great outlet for this creativity while allowing all of my business and accounting education to be put to good use.

Here are some inspiration pictures I have saved of a bakery if my dream were ever able to come to fruition, mainly from the movie "It's Complicated" which by the way I could watch over and over again!

One day maybe this dream will be a reality, until then I will continue fattening up my family with homemade croissants, eclairs, cream puffs, and cupcakes! 

Mere :-)

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

::Henley:: Week Three!

Can you believe it's been three weeks already? I can't!!!


Back up to birth weight. We went to the pediatrician last Thursday and she was 7 lbs 11.5 oz. which means she is eating plenty!


Overall very healthy. In the last few days she has gotten a small diaper rash and we are trying to figure out what is causing it. Hopefully it clears up soon, I hate seeing her little bum irritated.

She is sleeping really well. She has been sleeping in the Rock n Play almost exclusively. She did take one nap in the Pack n Play but it was only for about 20 minutes. She doesn't like her arms included in the swaddle and when she is in the Pack n Play, she has nothing on the sides of her so her reflexes almost always wake her up. My mom suggested rolling receiving blankets and putting them beside her so she feels more secure so we may try that.

She is up about three times a night to nurse but she almost always goes right back to sleep. We had one night where she slept five hours, I almost didn't believe it! Since she is at her birth weight now, we don't need to wake her every 2-3 hours to nurse.


Still wearing Newborn sizes only. There is one sleeper we put on her last night and it was definitely a little short on her. She wore it last week and it fit so she must be growing!


Still just mama's milk. I think she is going through her three week growth spurt, she has been wanting to nurse almost every hour and a half.

Baby Gear Love

This week we got a Wubbanub Giraffe Soothie for her pacifier. It works great because she can hold onto it and put it in her mouth if it falls out---plus it's super cute!

Still doing great and only crying when something is wrong.


On New Year's Day we went to Grandpa's house for dinner and she did great. 

We also went to sushi on Saturday for lunch. I didn't have any during my pregnancy so I couldn't wait any longer. We tried to time it so she would nurse in the parking lot and then sleep while we ate but when we got there, she was in a really deep sleep so we thought we would be ok for 30-45 minutes while we ate. She slept for the majority of the time but about 10 minutes into our entrees she woke up and wanted to eat asap. Ted took her outside while I ate then I stepped outside to nurse her while Ted ate. Lesson learned---never take the gamble, we should have nursed her like we planned. It was still great to have sushi--it was delicious!

On Sunday we went to my mom's for dinner and she pretty much slept the whole time, just wanting to nurse on schedule right around the time we started to eat (that seems to be her M.O.---eat when mom eats) :-)

Today Henley and I went to Publix, it was my first trip out of the house with her alone and she did great (and so did I, no breakdown YAY). 


This week has been really good for me. I'm feeling great and not really sore at all. Overall, I'm just loving being back to normal---I haven't missed heartburn at all, I painted my toe nails without losing my breath, and I'm back in most of my normal clothes (haven't attempted jeans yet).


This week Henley took her first real bath and she loved it! She hates getting a sponge bath so I was kind of dreading a real bath but I was pleasantly surprised---she loved it!

She was checking herself out in the mirror the whole time.

Thanks for stopping by!

Mere :-)

Sunday, January 6, 2013

::Fluff:: Cloth Diapering...Thus Far

Well we are almost three weeks in as new parents and things are actually going pretty well (I'm a little scared to type that as I feel I may jinx something). I really wanted to cloth diaper from the beginning and since we have been home, we have stuck with it and I have to say----I am in love! (check out this pic of her in her red Lil' Joeys!)

First up, our stash: I purchased a few different brands for the newborn size but I didn't purchase a ton as I wasn't sure if she would fit in them long or if I would even like the brands I purchased. Initially, our stash consisted of:

1 Grovia
1 gDiaper Tiny Pants
3 Swaddlebees
4 Lil' Joeys
2 BumGenius Newborn

About a week into cloth diapering Henley, we had learned which ones we loved and which we hated. The Grovia worked once or twice but then started leaking every time. We haven't used that one since. The gDipaer is ok, it doesn't leak or anything but it's usually one of the last ones I grab. We were doing laundry every day with this stash, especially since the BumGenius doesn't have a cutout for the umbilical cord so we couldn't even use that one until recently. With our stash only consisting of 8 useable diapers, we decided we needed a few more.  We loved the Lil' Joeys and the Swaddlebees so I ordered two more of each bringing our total to 14 now since she has lost her umbilical cord and can use the BumGenius. Here is our current working cloth diaper stash for the newborn stage (missing a few that are dirty or that she is currently wearing).

Other things we are really loving are:

We use both of these to put under her when we change her. Her new thing lately is to pee right when I take the diaper off of her. Using these under her keeps up from changing the changing pad cover over and over again.

Henley hates when the wipes are cold and it really wakes her up which isn't good for middle of the night diaper changes. We soak the wipes in the homemade wipe solution that I made here and it works great. 

Lastly here are the products that we have needed next to the changing table:

California Baby Diaper Cream: her little bum has had a little red spot on it and this cream cleared it up really quickly. Only downfall is that despite this cream being "cloth diaper friendly", it clogged our diapers and was causing repelling (no absorbency and therefore leaks!). We had to strip the diapers yesterday and now they are back working great---lesson learned. 

Coconut Oil: We are now using this to prevent any rashes before they get there.

Alcohol and Q-Tips: To clean her umbilical cord before it fell off.

Hand sanitizer: It's important to clean my hands after poopy diapers but it's really inconvenient to get to the sink without really disturbing her so I have been using this organic hand sanitizer while standing next to her and it works great.

With all of this, we are currently going about a day and a half between laundry washings. It's actually not too bad. Our wash routine is to throw all of the dirty diapers and wipes into the washer and fill with cold water. We let them soak for 20-30 minutes in the cold water. We run a rinse cycle to clean out all of the cold water. We then add two scoops of Rocking Green Laundry Detergent and wash with hot water. All of the diapers and wipes get two cycles in the dryer and then are ready to go.

Overall, this process has been really great and I love it. With the help of my hubs, we really haven't noticed it being too much more work and I think it's so much better for her in so many ways. We don't wear scratchy paper and plastic underwear so why should she?! The diapers are cute and functional and work really well. 

Any of you cloth diaper? Any questions or comments about our process? Any other tips to add??

Hope your Sunday is going great!! 

Mere :-)

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

::Henley:: Week 2

Happy New Year and Welcome 2013! I had such a great 2012 and I cannot wait to see what 2013 has in store for my family, friends, and I. 


We went to the doctor on 12/26/2012 and she was 7 lbs 2.5 oz which means she only gained half an ounce since the first pediatrician visit. We have another appointment on Thursday and we are hopeful she is gaining weight. She has been doing really well with breastfeeding.


Healthy as can be! 


She is still sleeping in our room, mostly in the Rock 'n Play. She doesn't like the Pack and Play at all. I am going to start trying to get her to nap in there during the day to try to get her used to it. She would much rather be held while she sleeps but can you blame her, we are cozy parents.

During the night, she is up three times (midnight, 2-3am, and 5-6am) and usually goes right back down after eating. A couple nights ago she was wide awake from 3-5 but wasn't fussy, just wanted to watch from Friends on the Tivo ;-)


Still wearing Newborn sizes only. I have been making sure to put all of her newborn outfits on her before she grows out of them. Here are some "outfits of the day" from this week.


Mom's breast milk She's still doing pretty well with the feeding. Her latch has been a little wonky the last 2 days but was back to normal this morning so hopefully she was in a little funk and it's over. She has spit up a lot of milk twice, both times she didn't really seem hungry but I still had her eat since 2-3 hours had passed by. I think I am going to let her show me when she wants to eat rather than force her based on time.

Baby Gear Love

Still loving the Rock and Play as it's really the only thing she sleeps in.


She is a very good baby, only crying when something is wrong. We are learning what her different cries mean and are able to fix them most of the time.


This week was much more mellow than last week but we still had some great visitors. Grandma Fletcher came to visit a few times and Henley got to spend some time with her before she left for Virginia yesterday. Grandma Reynolds stopped by a few times as well.

We took her to Babies r' Us and Bass Pro Shops to pick up a few items. I ran inside while Dad stayed in the car with her, then I stayed in the car while Dad went to Bass Pro Shops. (Being flu season we haven't taken her out in public just yet but it was nice for us to get out).

Yesterday we put her in the stroller and did two laps around the condo. It was a really nice day. There are many more walks in her near future, especially considering this great weather.


Mom is feeling much better, almost totally healed. I weighed myself this week and I am only up 9 lbs compared to my pre-pregnancy weight. I haven't attempted to put any pre-pregnancy clothing on just yet, I don't want to get discouraged before I even get started trying to get back into shape.


This week Henley really started to focus on us with her eyes and she is keeping her eyes open a lot more frequently. She also lost her umbilical cord. We are still doing sponge baths but hopefully this week she will get her first real bath.

I hope you all have a great week and a great New Year's Day!

Mere :-)