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12 things I’ve learned in the first year as Mom

I’m still in awe that you are a year old. How in the heck has this past year gone by so quickly? I remember it like it was yesterday, your dad and I thought we were going to a football game, and about 8 hours later, you were born. ( See that post HERE )

It’s easy to say this has been the best year of my life. This has also been a year of reflecting, learning, growing, and developing for myself, too. Watching you grow and learn isn’t the only thing we do. We grow and learn right along with you.

So, in honor of your first birthday, I want to give you 12 things that I’ve learned in this first year.

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  1. Everything you thought you “would” or “wouldn’t” do, throw it out the window. – Remember when you thought you wouldn’t drive around in the car to get your child to sleep? Remember when you said you wouldn’t give into letting her/him have the phone? The Television? Yeah. Go ahead and throw it all out the window. Take bits and pieces of what you want, or don’t want to do, and make it your own.
  2. You seriously have no idea what you are doing. – You have read all the books, you have researched it all on the internet. You think you are going to be prepped, ready, and you have loads of information just at your disposal. Let’s also remember, there is no handbook. So while all those things are useful, they have NOTHING to do with your child, family, or life. Take bits and pieces of everything you’ve read, learned, or researched, and make it your own.
  3. Shop all the diapers, and figure out what is best for you. – Don’t just think that one brand is going to be better than another. Sure, they might be for one child, or family, but for your child? NOPE! What works for one, doesn’t always work for another. Try them all, and see for yourself.
  4. Eat the peanut butter. – Let your child experiment with foods. Give them anything and everything you can while they are young. If they don’t like it now, they might like it tomorrow. Eggs, peanut butter, lunch meat, chicken, pork. Whatever we are having for dinner, you are usually eating too. Baby foods are ok, but let’s face it, who really wants to eat that stuff?
  5. Call your parents, and in-laws often. They appreciate it more than you know. – It is just as important for your families to see and hear about different growth and developmental stages as it is for you to see them for yourself. Call them. Send pictures. Give updates. They really do appreciate it.
  6. Smile. Laugh. Cry. – It’s ok to roll with the punches. Remember when I said that you have no idea what you’re doing? Sometimes you get frustrated. Sometimes you think you’re a failure. Sometimes the realization of having no idea what you are doing hits you. It’s ok to smile. It’s ok to cry. It’s also ok to laugh. Remember, “this too shall pass.” Also remember, “The days are long, but the years are short.”-Gretchen Rubin
  7. What really is sleep training? – THIS. IS. A. HOT. TOPIC. I can honestly tell you I have NO IDEA what works or doesn’t here. I can tell you that your dad and I have been blessed with a good sleeper, for the most part. It really didn’t take me long to transition you into sleeping all night once I tried it. I will thank all the heavens and angels above for that.
  8. FaceTime is just as important. – Use the technology you have for good. Keep in touch with your family. Again, they really do appreciate it.
  9. Spend time outdoors. – We live in Texas. This summer has been crazy hot for a baby. But going outside even for just a few minutes a day has helped tremendously. Babies seem to really love the outdoors, and it makes me feel less like a prisoner in my own house. Play outside. It’s ok to get dirty. You will get a bath, I promise!
  10. Put the phone down. – This is hard for me, too. I work from home, so I need to use my phone during the day. But I’m also a mom, and I don’t want to miss things. Spending time with my family is also important. Having some disconnect time is good for the soul. It’s good for your relationships, too.
  11. Take lots of pictures. – Remember that time when my phone was filled with nothing but pictures of my animals? Fast forward a year, and now we have pictures of the animals with the baby. TAKE THE PICTURES! They are amazing for looking back, and for remembering the sweet times                                                                               **This can be good, and bad for baby fever! 😉 **
  12. This  IS the best time of your life. – Seriously though, I can’t think of another time in my life that I can say has been the best time. Sure, the day I married your dad was AMAZING. Relocating, vacations, dinners, parties, anniversaries. They have all been truly spectacular, but this, THIS is really the BEST time in our life.

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Do you have any insight to add to the list? What are some things you learned in the first year of your child’s life?

**Link to our amazing photographer HERE 

 

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An Ode to Mom – My first Mother’s Day

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As Mother’s Day is drawing near, I can’t help but think about how lucky I am to be a mom. I’m celebrating my very first Mother’s Day this year, and while I’m so excited, and honored that I can now be a part of this amazing group of women I know, love and respect, I also want to reflect on the many lessons I’ve learned in just this short period of time. So here it is, an Ode to my mom – and all the mom’s out there, on Mother’s Day!

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Mom,

I just want to tell you – I get it now. While I might not get all of it at this point, I do somewhat understand what it’s like to be a mom. I always wondered if I would hear myself say those words, and now I’m excited and honored to be a part of this amazing journey we call Motherhood.

Remember all those sleepless nights? I get it now. I understand the sacrifice that you made for myself, and my siblings, working, providing for, and making sure that we were nurtured in the best way that you could. You did all these things while staying strong, and trying to keep a smile on your face at all times.

Remember all those missed, or cold meals you had? I get it now. There are times when you would have rather been entertaining your friends and family at gatherings, or times when you were hungry, but we needed you more. You went without those meals, or ate them later, because you love us, and you knew that these times would also pass. You smiled, and rolled with the punches, and never let it get the best of you.

Remember being happy that we were growing and developing, but sad at the same time? I get it now. You were so excited that we were growing, and learning new things, but at the same time, your babies, your children were growing up into their own people, creating their own personalities, and becoming the independent people that we are today. You smiled, laughed, and cried with us all. And did it in the most gracious and loving ways.

Remember thinking that this is the hardest, most tiring, most stressful, but most rewarding job of all time? I get it now. Being a Mother is the hardest, most tiring, stressful job I’ve ever had, and ever witnessed you do. You did it the best way that you knew how, and you did it with a smile on your face. You showed up when it seemed everyone else was walking out, and you have always been by our sides.

Remember that word you always used – Balance? I get it now. I know that you had to balance a job, family, home, and all the other tasks that you took on, all while making sure that we were safe and taken care of. You did it, and you were always there for games, practices, and whatever else we were a part of. You did all of these things, and you did them all with the highest level of integrity, and devotion, daily.

So mom, I just want you to know, after all these years. Thank you. Thank you for being one of the best role models that you could be. Thank you for teaching me valuable lessons on how to be the best mom that I can be. Thank you for sticking by my side, and thank you for being so loving, nurturing, and understanding.

Oh, and mom. I get it now.

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Yummy Spoon – My thoughts!

Jamie is 7 months old now. I seriously don’t know where time has gone. I find myself staring at her in awe, more often now-a-days because I just am amazed that Seth and I made this perfect little human. For the last month or so, we’ve been experimenting with solid foods. I said I was going to make all of her food, and for the most part I do, but I found some of the least expensive packages at Aldi, and have bought some from time to time.

You can imagine how excited I was when my sweet friend from Yummy Spoon sent me this!
If you haven’t guessed it by now, it’s called a “Yummy Spoon.” This thing is SO COOL, too! Basically, all you have to do is put in some food, like I’m doing in this video, mash it down if it’s a solid food, I used some already pureed baby food from Aldi, but if you have something like a banana, or avocado, you can put it in there, mash the food up, and it will dispense out of the spoon, perfect for your little one! It’s so easy to use, it’s not as messy, and Jamie LOVED it!


It is a little larger than that she’s used too, but that didn’t seem to bother her, and honestly it was probably easier for her to grasp once she got the hang of it. The plastic is great for younger children – like Jamie, and I can totally see her using this spoon when she’s older too!

Oh- best of all, you can throw this in the dishwasher, and you don’t have to worry about anything else! You can ALSO freeze it, so if your little one is teething, it would be nice to have around. We are going out of town this weekend, so I can’t wait to take it with me to experiment with it some more.

All in all, I’m excited for her to have this, and I can’t wait to see her grow and continue to use this YUMMY SPOON!

You can check out the website HERE 

ALSO- Because my friend is so sweet, you can ALSO purchase this amazing spoon with a discount by using the code “MOMWANT” you will get 20% off your order! HOW AWESOME is that?!

You can also go to my Instagram page, and see some more videos of Jamie using this Spoon. Trust me, you won’t want to miss it! @momwantstoeat

Let me know what do you think about this spoon?!

 

 

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Girls and Bows

Before my daughter was born, I swore I wouldn’t be one of those parents that put all those crazy bows on my child.  I don’t know, I’m just not into that fashion trend. We tend to keep things a little more light and airy around our house, and in our wardrobe. So, this sweet friend of mine, who happens to own a bow boutique sent me 2 of her handmade bows. Ya’ll, I’m here to tell you they are GREAT!

First of all, Jamie has been blessed with my small head. That’s a blessing and a curse. The trouble is that no headband really seems to fit her. I have a few that work, but most of them are too big. But the bows from 2ndavenueboutique work great. The elastic on these headbands are PERFECT! They aren’t too snug, nor are they too big. When she moves, they seem to move right with her.

Melissa-the owner of 2ndavenue boutique can do pretty much anything too! As you know, our family is a Clemson Tiger family. (National Champs… WHAT, WHAT!!) Knowing that, Melissa made the CUTEST headband for Jamie! It’s a little bigger than I would have picked out for her, but OH MY GOODNESS, it’s still perfect!


Obviously Jamie loves this bow too. Can’t you tell from her expression?!

There are so many other options that Melissa can do. She’s made bow ties for the men, even a tutu for a wedding! Whatever you can dream of, I’m sure that she can do it. The sky’s the limit with this boutique!


Are these not perfect?! And if you really still don’t believe that she can do anything and everything, look at this cute puppy!


So do me a favor, my family and friends. Go Here and check out her etsy shop! You won’t be sorry that you did. I promise you, I’m not!

Happy shopping, friends! 🙂

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Alcohol at Wholesale Stores

Are you one of the many people that shop at Costco? If you are like me, and the 1,897,650,432 people in the world, you probably shop at Costco, Sam’s Club, BJ’s, or some other wholesale warehouse type place. I love going to Costco, but truthfully, you really have to plan your trips there. Timing is everything in these places, and if you want to know my personal opinion, they need to serve alcohol. This is why-

First of all, you all know I have a child. I love my child. I honestly never knew that motherhood could be such an amazing gift from God. HOWEVER, I – probably like the rest of us parents – HATES when my child screams in a store. It’s so embarrassing, and there isn’t much you can do about it unless you want to get 0 things accomplished during the day. So serving alcohol to the nice members, with or without children, might make the fact that ALL the children in these stores are screaming at the top of their lungs a little less noticeable.

Second. Bumper baskets. Come on. You can’t even tell me that you haven’t thought about ramming one of those big shopping carts right into another one. Especially when the person is in the middle of the aisle, stopped. Taking up ALL the space. Move it Susan, I’m busy here! Having a glass of cabernet while strolling the aisles might make the fact that I’m wasting my life away in a wholesale shopping center, while my child screams, a little less terrifying. Also, who wants to spill your wine or beer?

Third. THOSE SAMPLE PEOPLE! What else goes best with pretzel bread than a nice red blend, cabernet, or pinot grigio? Maybe even a IPA or hefeweizen for you non wine drinkers out there! But seriously, there isn’t enough drinks for all the samples I can have. I’m honestly feeling like I don’t even get to clean my pallet from the last sample and I’m off to test something else. We don’t get to sample enough drinks, so maybe, if there were wine and beer available- I would be more apt to try ALL the samples!

Costco Profits Rise In Weak Economy

Last, but definitely not least – If I have a glass of wine, or a beer,  I would probably stroll the aisles a little longer, filling my basket with more than the things that I had on my list. I would be happier, and more relaxed. I might even stop and grab a bite to eat from the concession stand.

So if you, or someone you know works at one of these wholesale chains. Please do us all a favor and tell them that they are missing out on a big thing here!

Thank you, and you’re welcome! 🙂

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I’M BREASTFEEDING MY BABY!!

So, if you didn’t know by now- I’m one of “those” people who takes it upon themselves to tell everyone that I possibly can that I chose to breastfeed my child. Do I knock the people who don’t, can’t, won’t? NO! I’m VERY convinced that as a parent, and spouse, you need to do whatever is best for your family- no matter what that decision is. I also believe that you stink to your guns, and don’t worry about what others think. HOWEVER, since this is MY diary  blog, I get to choose what the topic is. I’m going to tell you something about this. It’s nurturing, invigorating, and fulfilling. It’s also a great way to lose that post baby weight! I’ve lost about 32lbs so far, and only gained about 27! Above all of those great things-what I would like to tell you more about, makes me so hungry all the time!

I think this is the part that no one really talks about. When people say “eating for 2” I’m not sure they take into consideration breastfeeding. Let us take a stroll down this path. Shall we?

Eating enough calories, drinking enough water. You know if you don’t have anything in your body, you can’t produce enough milk. Eating enough calories and drinking enough water is so important. Here’s the thing. You’re hungry and thirsty pretty much all the time. Oh- and those growth spurts that your child goes through? Yeah- just know you will be  acting as a human garbage disposal during those periods.

Watch what you eat. Yeah- I found this one out the hard way. Broccoli, onion, beer? If I would like to stay up all night with a SUPER gassy infant, then I’ll eat all the of those things. This one is tricky, but you kind of have to do trial and error here. I know there are certain things that my child doesn’t agree with, so I stay away from them. It’s hard, but I do it. I’ve also realized the more “bland” of a diet I have, the better off we will be. Do you know how boring that is for someone who likes to eat spicy foods?! CRAZY, RIGHT?!

Food Cravings. You thought that went away when you delivered? HA! Joke’s on you! I think I crave more different foods now then when I was pregnant. I think this has to do with getting enough calories and eating the right foods. Thai food, wings, Juicy Hamburgers? You name it, I’ve probably had a craving for it at one time or another.

Did you crave anything, or have any strange things happen while you were breastfeeding?

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Seriously, RSV?!

4 months old. My daughter is 4 months old! I can’t believe it happened all right before my eyes. I swear I blink too fast and she is another month older. How can this happen so quickly? I can tell you I’m thankful for being able to spend time with her, and watch her grow. I’m thankful for the late nights, early mornings, diaper changes, nursing sessions, I even don’t really mind the 123,456,789,087,654,321 times that she’s spit up on me already. I did a lot of research before getting pregnant, during my pregnancy, and even some after she was born. In NONE of those books, blogs, and research documents that I read, did ANYONE mention the way I would feel the first time she got sick.

It all started on a Tuesday. I took Jamie to her doctor for a 4 month checkup, and shots. They checked her out, I mentioned she had an onset of a cold, and the doctor checked her for that as well. Everything was fine. We went home, continued on with our schedule, and kept moving ahead. Wednesday she started getting a terrible cough, but I still didn’t think a lot about it. No fever, just a cough. By Thursday she was so bad with the cough I was getting concerned. See- we were leaving on Sunday to go on a trip, and I knew I needed to make sure that everything was in order before going on a plane with a 4 month old. So, after talking with my sister in law, I made an appointment for the doctor.

Friday morning. We go to the doctor. They run the tests. They check her lungs. And then they give me the scariest news. RSV. For real? My child, who is at home with me primarily, has RSV? How in the world? I wanted her out of the daycare life for these purposes. What does this mean? Is she going to be ok? Oh, no, I’m going to cry again, aren’t I? -(Cue all the mom emotions starting to flair up!)

Here’s what they don’t really tell you about this RSV business. What it stands for is “really scary virus,” (Respiratory Syncytial Virus) but that’s for parents only. In all my research on this topic,  I’m almost certain that this is just a really bad cold. The issue for most is that it’s not caught early enough because the child doesn’t have symptoms other than a cough and possibly a runny/stuffy nose. What happens is that all the mucus gets blocked and they don’t have any way to pass it because they are so little and can’t blow their noses, etc. Yes I’ve heard of cases where children have been hospitalized, and even worse. I’m thankful that this wasn’t the case for my child, but because of this “scare” on sickness, I watch her like a hawk, especially now!

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We were awarded with this cute little Pink Panda looking nebulizer and a prescription, and off we went. Honestly, I know I am lucky that it wasn’t any worse, but Jamie has been handling this treatment like a champ and I could see a difference in her within the first 2-3 days. It’s now been a week, and we have a couple more days left of her medicine, but there is no more cough, everything has seemed to pass the way it’s needed too, and my child is still laughing and smiling like she should be! Seeing my daughter with this oxygen mask on, it breaks my heart. I know that it’s for the best though. Really, she doesn’t seem to mind it either!

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My caution to everyone else out there is to do your research. I know from my own experience in just the 4 months Jamie has been on the “outside” that this shit is scary. It’s freaking scary being a parent. Especially when these cute little babies can’t communicate with words to tell you what’s going on. Also, take your children to the doctor. I am glad that I didn’t wait, and that I acted as soon as I could to talk Jamie to the doctor. My last piece of advice. Trust your instincts, whatever they are. We have a crazy sense as parents. Don’t be afraid of it. Just keep on doing what you’re doing. WE ALL are doing great. WE ALL will make it!

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