MommyMandy l California Mom Blog

Bonding with your Newborn #formulaforhappiness #gerbergoodstart

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I still can not believe that my little boy is already five months old. I feel that time is just flying by so fast and I am trying to savor and hold onto ever little moment I can with him. Every time he achieves a new milestone I am so excited for him.

I still remember that very first day home with Mikey and I have a few tips for a great Formula for Happiness and bonding with your newborn.  The first day with Mikey  was home just a few hours after he was born, the perks of having your baby at a Birth Center. It was absolutely wonderful to just be in my own bed with Mikey and getting to know each other. Cuddles, nursing and looking at every single detail of my little guy. That first day is exhausting yet it goes by so incredibly fast!

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One way I found to be a great way to bond and get stuff done is Babywearing! I totally agree that babywearing is a great way to Formula for Happiness when you are trying to still care for other children and keep a happy newborn.

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Baby needs to also bond with Daddy and Siblings! Mikey is already in love with his family. Everyone spends time with him each day talking to him and singling to him!

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Lastly, because Newborns grow soooo incredibly fast take photos! Take lots of photos. Of their little hands, feet, back of their head. If you can hire a photographer to take month photos do it!!! Here are a few of the professional photos from birth to 4 months of Mikey.

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Be sure to also make a FREE appointment with Gerber’s new certified sleep consultant, or with a nutritionist or certified lactation consultant at gerber.com/experts.

Wonderful 4th of July with Tommee Tippee

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4th of July with Tommee Tippee
4th of July is one of my favorite times of the year. I love spending time with my family and celebrating our country’s Independence! We usually spend 4th of July out on the lake boating and swimming followed by a wonderful BBQ and then head back to the lake for Fireworks!

This year we did it all different with a BBQ at the house with friends and the whole family. Then in the evening we headed out to the Lake where my husband and his band Doobius Distinction played a concert on the lake! At 9pm the fireworks started and we had such an amazing time!

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Tommee-Tippee-2-Pack-9--pTRU1-20012248dtOf course we had our trusted Tommee Tippee cups with us for Shelby! The Insulated Straw Tumbler has quickly become her favorite cup. Perfectly designed to keep your toddler happy and hydrated. Insulated base to keep drinks cool and encourage drinking. Straw flips down between sips to stay clean and stop spills. Super soft straw makes drinking easy and is gentle on gums. All tommee tippee cups are BPA free, with swappable parts.

 

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DIY Backyard Retreats

DIY Backyard Retreats

With Summer in full swing many people are thinking about ways to spruce up their back yards into a fun retreat. A place to sit and spend the summer days or evenings relaxing and having fun.

We love the idea of creating a special space outside where you can call it your own little retreat! It can be for you, or even a place for the kids. From an outdoor bar to a reading nook there are tons of ways you can create your own special space.

The great thing is you don’t have to spend a ton of money either. You can purchase a ready to go shed from Tesco then paint and customize it how ever you like.

A few ideas:

shed for teens to relax

Using a Mercia 8 x 8 Dutch Style Shiplap Shed is a great retreat for teens. You can paint it and add in a couch and other goodies that teens love to have like a mini fridge and snack bar.

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I love the 7×7 Timberdale Overlap Double Door  Shed. You can replace the doors with window doors and create a special place for mom to go and read or have some girl time.

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You can turn the simple Lifetime 10 x 8 Plastic Shed into an amazing playhouse for kids! You can add a kitchen set and a little table. It is a great space for kids to go and use their imagination!

Do you have any ideas on using sheds as a Backyard Retreat? Tell us in the comments!

Mikey is 4 Months Old!

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I am so late on posting this update on Mikey! I didn’t get his 4 month photos back and then time got away from me. Anyways! We are enjoying this little guy so much!

The day he turned 4 months he rolled over!

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This month Mikey celebrated Father’s Day with Daddy, went in a swimming pool, Celebrated his first 4th of July and became a great little sleeper!

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A video posted by Amanda (@mommymandy) on

 

He has a great bedtime routine. bath, nursing and bed by 8pm and he sleeps in his crib until around 4am.

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Kids Should Be Free to Be….. #FreeToBe

Silly…Athletic…Creative…Goofy…Lovable…Artistic.. to be kids!

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Sometimes it still blows my mind to think I have four kids. And each one of them brings something incredibly magical to my life. They love to be outside, to play, dance, cook and be creative. I love sitting and watching my 3rd grader do arabesques and Samantha hitting a softball way out to center field.

Shelby is loving to get outside and explore her surroundings and now that Summer is here what better ways to let our kids be free to explore outdoors!

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A photo posted by Amanda (@mommymandy) on

With getting outdoors does come dirt.. and messy clothes! lots and lots of messy clothes! Two of my kids have extremely sensitive skin so I am glad I can turn to a clothes detergent that is gentle on our clothes yet gets them nice and clean, all free clear.

Yep, that’s right now my kids can get outdoors, be creative , get dirty and I don’t have to worry about their clothes!

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all free clear is the #1 recommended detergent brand by Dermatologists, Allergists, and Pediatricians for sensitive skin. It’s tough on stains yet gentle enough for the whole family. Plus, it’s safe for use in standard and HE machines. It rinses clean and has a gentle, hypoallergenic formula. Powerful Clean. Gentle on Skin.. all free clear is also 100% hypoallergenic.

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NEW From the #1 Detergent Brand Recommended by Dermatologists Allergists and Pediatricians comes all® free clear liquid fabric softener, dryer sheets, OXI mighty pacs and OXI boosters. Use together to make fabrics cleaner, softer, and more comfortable against your family’s sensitive skin. 100% free of dyes and perfumes. Gentle on skin. Safe for all washing machines. Find it in your fabric conditioner aisle!

Also, you can get a Coupon to save a $1.00 on any all product! 

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Like That he is 3 Months Old!

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My sweet boy is three months old ad boy are we having a lot of fun with him! He wakes up smiling and goes to bed smiling. He coos all day long and loves to be outside checking things out.

He is a big boy already weighing in at around 15 pounds and 25 inches long! He wears 3-6 month clothes but at the rate he is growing he might move up quickly! I like to call him Chunk or Bubba.

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Here is our third month with Mikey! Lots of fun! In his third month Mikey celebrated his first Mother’s Day with mommy. Went on the boat, started to giggle and well have lots of fun exploring the world!

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ZAQ Dew Aromatherapy Essential Oil Difusser

*A product was provided.
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I absolutely love using my Essential Oils. It has bee two years now since I was first introduced to oils and since then I use them for everything! Over the past few weeks I have literally been using them on a daily basis because well.. they help my family and I!

One way you can use Essential Oils is to Diffuse them. This is a must have for me because some days I need something to uplift me, or to help me when I wanted support to open my airways or if I just want my living room to smell awesome.

The ZAQ Dew Aromatherapy Essential Oil Difusser is a great diffuser to have if you are looking for one under fifty dollars. The Dew is filled with inspiration and good wishes for each day. The dewdrop-shaped diffuser releases refreshing aromas from its custom-designed top, creating a unique and trendy diffuser design. Sleek and compact, Dew brings the freshness, optimism, and inspiration of the early morning into your everyday life.  It runs for four hours! The Dew covers 200-300 square feet of room space which is great for a living room,

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It has LED lights as well that you can choose to either have them on or you can run the diffuser with the lights off.

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As you can see I really like duffusing Lemongrass and Wild Orange in the diffuser. You just add a couple drops of each oil along with filling the diffuser with water to the water line and then turn it on.

You can purchase the ZAQ Dew Diffuser along with all the other ZAQ products on Amazon.

Two Months Old

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My sweet little boy is already two months old. Time can’t slow down. Every day flies by so quickly and I still spend most of my night up with Mikey.

But he is such a happy baby. He loves to smile and kick his feet and flail his arms around. We still swaddle him when he really cranky. He also loves to take a bath with mommy but obviously hates it when he has to get out. It’s cold!!!

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In his second month Mikey went on a boat for the first time. Celebrated his First Easter and got to meet his Aunt Shannon and Uncle Mark (Aunt Rose).

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This month I also fell in love with babywearing. I didn’t realize how much more I could get done if I wore Mikey!

Here we go onto Month 3!

 

Create a pretty spring flower arrangement using silk flowers from Silk Plants Direct

*A product was provided.
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Spring is finally here and I really wanted to brighten up my home with some fun flowers. I love fresh flowers but they never last very long and I wanted something bright for my dining table.

Silk Flowers are a great option to go when creating a flower arrangement that you want to have around longer than a week. For Spring and Summer I wanted bright colors and fell in love with the Gerbera Daisy Sprays in orange, fuchsia, and turquoise.

The Silk Flowers come shipped neatly where they wont get smashed. They come with long stems so you can cut them however long you need them.

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After I cut the flowers (you need a wire cutter to cut them) to the size I wanted I just placed the in my glass vase.

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Such a fun, bright bouquet for this time of the year! You can purchase these Silk Flowers from www.silkplantsdirect.com.

He is One Month Old!

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Our sweet guy is already five weeks old and I can not believe how fast the time is flying. I knew that it would be fast, I knew the days would feel long but pass quickly.  He is the best reason to get no sleep and he absolutely loves to be held or worn in a carrier.

We are all just smitten by this sweet boy. He is usually pretty calm and cries when he is hungry or wants me to pick him up. He loves to nurse and his binkie.

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Michael’s Birth Story

These days are just flying so quickly and I want time to slow down. These first few weeks with a newborn are so special… and exhausting.

February really flew by. As soon as I hit 37 weeks I was excited and anxious to meet this baby boy but I was also sad to see the end of my pregnancy. I actually really enjoyed the last 9 weeks of pregnancy and loved to feel the little person moving inside. I had him all to myself and laughed when I could see him shifting his body from one side of my stomach to the next. I knew I would miss being pregnant. This is our last baby so I really did try to savor every moment.

39 weeks

I had my 39 week appointment with my midwife on Thursday Feb. 19th (39W2D). I had been having contractions all week long, some where I thought they would turn into labor but didn’t so she did try to check to see if I had any dilation but my cervix was too high to even reach. I figured I better prepare myself to go past my due date and possibly be pregnant into March like I did with Shelby.

The next day on Friday I sat and had a really great conversation with my friends Kari. It was nice to talk to her about my fears of going post date, child birth and overall my feelings. Patrick and I decided we would go to bed around 11 pm. Both of us were really tired from the long day and it really was the best decision because we were able to get a few hours of sleep. (We usually had been going to bed around 1 am)

on Saturday Feb. 21st I woke up at 2:20am with really bad heartburn so I got up out of bed to get a tums and to use the restroom. I then sat back down on the end of my bed. For some reason that night I decided to add an extra blanket on my side of the bed for extra protection. Sitting on my bed I felt wetness in my underwear and freaked thinking I was spotting again so I stood up and walked back to the bathroom and  felt a little more come out. I checked my underwear once I got to the bathroom. . It was clear liquid so what else do you do? Smell it. Sure enough that very distinct amniotic fluid smell.  Standing in the bathroom i had a little more gush onto the bathroom floor. I whispered to my husband  who jumped out of bed, and told him my water broke.

That was around 2:25 am. Hubby jumped out of bed and was in “Lets get the F out of here” mode. I was like nah, lets wait for the contractions to start. He called my midwife, tried calling our photographer, called his mom to come stay with the girls and I sat there texting my Doula sitting in my underwear.  He is ready in about 30 seconds and is like “uhh Amanda, you need to get ready! We need to get out of here!” So I throw on a bra and some sweatpants and I notice very light contractions that are exactly 2 minutes apart.  My mother in law shows up and we leave the house. It is around 2:55am at this point.

We head down the mountain. By the time we get to Running Springs to head down 330 I was over sitting in the car. Good thing my van’s seats have arm rests as I tried sitting and just clutching onto them!

We arrived at the Birth Center around 3:25 am. My midwife checked me right when I got into the birthing room and was already 6cm. Hubby and I went to the restroom and I had a few contractions in the restroom but I just wasn’t very comfortable so we went and I sat on the birthing ball for a little bit. It felt like eternity but probably only 5 or so minutes.

I was asked if I wanted the birth pool, and all I could think about is I wont have any time to actually be in it…( dumb move on my part. Maybe if I had gotten n the water it would have helped with the intensity)

My Doula arrived and at that point everything became so fuzzy. I felt like all I wanted to do was hide into my husband’s chest and drown out everything and everyone around me. My labor was progressing so incredibly fast I seriously had a really hard time relaxing and breathing through contractions. My midwife was trying to distract me with saying “tap your right foot” or “relax your left shoulder” and I was getting frustrated because in a contraction I couldn’t focus on which was right or left.

My Doula Kaleen did use a few Essential Oils to help with calming me and I just loved the smell. (I can’t remember which oils she used now though)

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I ended up getting on the bed on all fours and it did help me.. I guess. I really just felt out of control and wanted to scream. I did let out a good wail at some point. From my midwife’s notes at 4:05 am I was 9cm but had a cervical lip. I remember her checking me and trying to push the cervical lip back hurt more than the contraction and lunging forward.  I do remember just rocking back and forth  or burying my face into my Husband’s lap. I did have the urge to push and it did feel better to just let my body do what it wanted.

My midwife had me change positions and try sitting on the portable loo to see if changing positions helped and it did because I felt the baby’s head come down. I remember feeling nothing but fear at that point.  I was helped back onto the bed. I really had said I didn’t want to be on my back for pushing but at the time I guess it was the best way? I needed directed pushing because I push hard and fast.  I remember my midwife yelling at me to focus and I guess that is what it took to bring me out of this space in my head where I was tuning everyone out.

I really am thankful for the urge to push because it helped and felt so much better to push than the contractions. Mikey had a big head and once his head was out it felt so much better. Watching his birth video is really cool because you can see him rotate his head and then he was  out.

He was placed right onto me and all I would think was “omg thank you! that is over!”

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This was 17 minutes later. I seriously was just like “let me just lay here for a sec.”

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We laid together like this for a while. It was great we did delayed cord clamping and it was nice to just be left alone with the baby. I can’t remember if anyone asked me if I wanted to sit up. I had the shakes really bad so the blankets felt nice on me. Mikey just laid on me sleeping.

Daddy with Mikey.

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My awesome Doula Kaleen and I

my doula

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baby Mikey

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Happy 3rd Birthday Shelby!

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I can not believe that my sweet little girl is THREE! We have had such a fun year watching her grow! Shelby weighs about 28 pounds and is 33 inches tall. She wears size 3t clothes and a size 7 shoe!

Favorites:

  • Food- mac and cheese
  • Drink- milk (she calls it wilk)
  • Tv Show: Doc. McStuffins and Sofia the First
  • Movie: Frozen

She knows most of her colors, loves to sing her ABCs, coloring, cutting paper (and her hair) and is potty trained!

We celebrated her birthday by going shopping and had a pizza party at my inlaws house.

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Baby Mikey is here!

Our sweet baby boy made his appearance after 2.5 hours of labor on Saturday February 21st 2015! he was 9 pounds 9 ozs and 22 inches long!

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Week in Pics (Feb. 21-27th)

Well this week started off with baby Mikey making his appearance! I was very lucky to have Hubby home for five days before he went back to work. The first few days we spent at various dr. appointments and doing some home re-decorating.

Lots of visitors too!

Samantha received an award for Principle’s Honor Roll where she has a 3.6GPA!

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Week in Pics (Feb. 14th – 20th)

We had another really fun week. I hit 39 weeks pregnant, I seriously can’t believe how fast this month is flying by waiting for baby boy to get here!

I started having edema and would take lots of baths with Epsom salts and it really is helping the swelling.

My mother in law threw me a really fun baby shower and I had a wonderful time with my friends.

The girls had Girl Scouts and cookie booths!

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