Thursday, May 10, 2012

A Day in the Life of a One Week Old Baby

This is my Baby ESP app the first night home. Whew! That was a LONG night...

All the baby books and blogs couldn't have prepared me for what our first week with Evangeline would be like.  Here's a rundown of a typical day:

5:00 am     Evie wakes up crying, wanting to be fed.

6:00 am     We finish the feeding, but Evie isn't ready to be put down yet. She's staring at me, wide awake.

6:30 am     Evie finally starts to doze in my arms, and I put her in the bassinet.  I crash hard in our bed.

8:00 am     Evie starts to cry, ready to eat again.  We start another feeding.

8:45 am     Now done with nursing, I'm starving from nursing all night, so we head to the kitchen.  I put Evie down on the Boppy lounger and pour a bowl of cereal.

9:00 am     Evie starts to fuss, so I pick her up and rock her to sleep.  She falls asleep, so I set her back on the lounger. I start a load of dirty diaper laundry while Kemi hangs with Evie.

9:30 am     Evie's still asleep, so I go to the office to pump.  I'm trying to stockpile as much milk as possible for when I go back to work.

10:00 am   Done pumping, and Evie's still asleep. I'm hungry again from pumping, so I grab a quick snack.

10:30 am   Evie's awake, and wants to be fed.  We snuggle into the couch for a feeding.

11:30 am   Finally finished nursing. Evie's had a lot of gas pain recently, so nursing takes twice as long
because she stops eating frequently due to the gas pain.  Poor baby!  Evie hangs with Kemi while I get in the shower.

12:00 pm   Finally showered and in clean clothes. Hair's wet and in a bun, no makeup.  Makeup (and sometimes blow-dried hair if we're lucky) are now reserved only for church on Sunday.  These days, wearing deodorant and clean clothes is a big deal.  We sit down for lunch, and I'm starving.  Again.

1:00 pm     We have visitors come to see Evie and I awkwardly nurse under my hooter hider and pray no      
side-boob has decided to make itself visible.

3:00 pm     After everyone leaves we bring Evie into the nursery for some tummy time. This is one of our
favorite things lately.  We're amazed at how strong our girl is! She wears out after about 10 minutes:)

3:30 pm     Another feeding, diaper change, and pump again.

5:00 pm     We eat dinner, then head out for a walk.  I'm finding it necessary to leave the house each day,     even if just for a walk, to preserve some sanity.  I want to start to get back into some activity too.

6:00 pm     Back home, and back to pumping. The rest of the evening involves feeding Evie, and          changing dipes. Again and again and again!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

A Dozen Newborn Must-Haves

Now that Evangeline is two weeks old, I thought I'd share with you a few of the products that helped us get through those first days.  A lot of moms have their list of must-haves, and this is mine! I hope all you expectant moms find it helpful.  Those of you who already have little ones, did you find these same items indispensable? Anything you would add?

1. Miracle Blanket. A friend gave us one of these because their child hated it, but for us it's been indispensable! We swaddle Evie only for sleeping, and she sleeps so much better when she's all snuggled up in the miracle blanket.

2. Medela Pump In Style Breast Pump.  Any breastfeeding moms planning to go back to work, or leave baby for an evening out should definitely invest in a good breast pump.  This one is pricey, but it's been so helpful for me.  I've been pumping since the day we got home from the hospital to make sure Evie will have enough for when I go back to work.

3. Onesies.  Friends and family love to buy baby girls the sweetest little outfits, and while we love those for church and any time we go out, nothing beats onesies for hanging around the house.  And now with Evie guzzling milk every hour, we change onesies two or three times a day anyway.  I'd recommend having both newborn and 0-3 month sizes on hand.  For the first two weeks, newborn size onesies were the only thing that fit her tiny 6 lb. body!

4. Aden and Anais Swaddle Blankets.  These are one of the most used baby gifts I received.  They are very big, but super thin, so they're great for Arizona summers.  They work really well for throwing over the car seat so the sun doesn't get in her eyes, swaddling, etc.  We love them!

5. Earth Mama Angel Baby Natural Nipple Butter. Awkward name, great product!  Breastfeeding moms, I really recommend getting this product and applying it after every.single.feeding. Don't skip applying this after a feeding and your nipples won't feel like they were attacked by tiny razor blades.

6. Earth Mama Angel Baby Milkmaid Tea.  This tea is supposed to help with milk production.  I don't know if it actually works, but I drank it the morning Evie was born, and have had a cup or two every day since, and I never had any issues with my milk production.  I like the taste, too!

7. Hats. Nothing fancy needed here...we just used the hats the hospital gave us.  New babies lose so much of their heat through their heads, so we kept a hat on Evie when sleeping. They're super cute too!

8. Gripe water. The first night Evie had painful gas, I was nearly in tears.  Kemi's mom made us Nigerian food for dinner, AND friends brought us Thai food! It didn't occur to me that eating spicy food might affect my breastmilk.  I sent Kemi and his mom to the drugstore for gripe water, and five minutes after taking it, Evie was sound asleep.  I'd recommend new moms have some on hand, just in case!

9. Boppy Newborn Lounger. A friend lent us this, and for the first two weeks, this was the only place Evie would sleep besides in our arms.

10. Infant socks. Nothing fancy, but baby feet get cold fast, so we almost always have Evie in socks.

11. Boppy Nursing Pillow. The first few days, it's hard to breastfeed without pillows piled up under you.  It doesn't even really have to be a special nursing pillow, just any pillows.

12. Gowns.  We got these from Baby Gap and love them.  They have built in mittens to cover baby's hands for sleeping. Newborn nails are so thin and sharp, and they grab their face all the time.  It's so nice to have a gown for late-night diaper changes, instead of messing with a bunch of snaps on the onesies.

That's it! Hopefully all you expectant moms find this list helpful!

Cloth Diapering a Newborn

We bought a lot of different cloth diapers before Evie was born, not sure what type we would like best.  The bulk of them are prefolds, but I also purchased about 10 fitteds, 10 pockets, and 2 or 3 AIO's.  When Evie came home from the hospital, the nurse sent us with a whole package of disposable newborn diapers, so we decided we'd use those until they were gone.  It was helpful to just use disposables for the first few days while we settled in, and we found the prefolds rubbed her umbilical cord stump a lot.  Once those were gone, we switched to prefolds with a cover.  This cover has been my favorite, because it's just so cute!  We got it in the newborn/preemie size and it's still on the smallest snaps!
Unfortunately, after a week, Evie developed a terrible diaper rash.  I think maybe because the prefolds don't wick moisture away (they feel wet to the touch once they're wet, unlike microfiber) that contributed to the rash.  I finally decided to try some of our pocket dipes to see if they finally fit.  The first to fit was our rumparooz.
Currently we have the rumparooz pocket and two Blueberry pockets in our rotation.  Luckily our Blueberry dipes have velcro aplix closures, allowing us to get a tight enough fit.  I'd recommend keeping a couple of aplix closure dipes in your stash for times when baby is between snap sizes.  

So that's what I've learned the past two weeks cloth diapering an infant. Hopefully it's helpful to some of you new mamas!