Apr 16, 2013

Twindom: Three Months

TrippDavy
 
Dear Pip and Pop,
Our third month together has been really amazing. You are both such little personalities. Every morning we sing songs and have a dance party and you both just laugh and smile. You boys are so loveable and so perfect. We all really do belong together.
Our Perfect Family
At McKinley's BaptismEaster Sunday
You are certainly not my tiny infants anymore. I might have cried big alligator tears when I packed up your newborn clothes. You aren't my tiny preemies. You aren't my little newborns. Now you are infants. Perfect babies with big personalities. The first two months were hard. This month has been fun.
Melt my heart cute. Holding hands in the crib.
 
You have both developed so much and now notice everything around you. You are so alert and love to lay (or even better be held) and take it all in. You like to watch the ceiling fan spin, look out the window and see the world, be carried around the house and hear the names of all the things. You love to talk and be talked to. You are much more active this month and enjoy looking at toys, holding your "things", and watching lights. You are both "always up for a good game of peekaboo" but like playing with Daddy a lot more than with Mommy. You are still not big fans of tummy time, although Davy did manage to scoot his way across the room during tummy time this month. Maybe you'll be an early crawler. You both smile. You both coo. You both bring such joy to everyone you meet.
Playing together
Checking each other out.
Playtime with Rory.
 
You are both champion nighttime sleepers. We start bedtime around 9:00 and have you tucked into your RockNPlays by 9:45ish. You both will sleep until between 4 and 5! We wake up, eat, and go back to sleep from 6:30-9:30. Your daytime sleep isn't as impressive, but that's okay! You boys keep being my awesome nighttime sleepers.
Last nap together in the crib before you got too big to share it.
 
You had a big month this month with two birthday parties for your cousins, your first trip to church to see your cousins baptism, your first trip to the mall (and your second), your first big holiday (Easter), meeting your great-grandparents, meeting your great-aunt and uncle, visiting the arboreteum and continuing to grow and be awesome.
 
 
Tripp,
Three Months Old
You are a content and happy boy. You always look so serious in photos and have one photo face you give every time the camera comes out, but in real life you are expressive and smiling and so alert and engaged. You look right into my eyes when I hold you and love nothing more than to be held and talked to.
 
You are still my peaceful guy. I wonder if you get jealous of the attention your brother demands, but you seem so content to sit and ponder the world. You are an independent guy though, so I know that even when you are laying in a Boppy or in the BabyBjorn Bouncer you are okay. You are a patient thinker, like your daddy. Your intelligence and thoughtfulness are things I admire in you and hope I can learn from you. You inspire me everyday to be a better more patient mommy.
Your Photo Face
Holding all your "things"
Serious Little Man
Growing as big as a Dinosaur
 
 
 
 
Davy,
Three Months Old
This month Mommy spent a lot of time worrying about you. You are still generally a cheerful happy guy and have the biggest, brightest, open mouth smile when you choose to share it, but your reflux is causing you a lot of pain. We received a referral to a specialist this month and I am looking forward to getting it all under control so we can have our Davy back. There is nothing I wouldn't do to make you feel better. I love you with all of my heart and seeing you suffer truly hurts my heart. Many of our photos of you this month have you crying, but we do have some great big smiles captured too!
 
You are still an opinionated guy who knows what he wants. You are vocal and demanding and will never settle for less than exactly what you wanted. I love this about you. I love your strong will and your stubborn determination. It will serve you well throughout your life. Your mama is strong willed too.
Peaceful Sleeping Davy
My Other Growing Dinosaur
Crying Boy
Mommy Trying to Comfort You for the Picture
 
 
 
My boys,
 
You bring me so much joy every day. You are my boys. You amaze me. You fascinate me. You always keep things interesting. I love you unconditionally. I love you forever. I love you with no strings. I love you with no boundaries. I love the babies you are. I love the men you will become. You are my boys.
 


I'll love you forever,
I'll like you for always,
as long as I'm living
my babies you'll be.
Loving you forever,
Mom
My Big Guys!

Three Month Stats

Tripp:

Weight**: 10.6lbs (10lbs 10oz) -- this is a 27.5% increase since two months!
Height: unknown
Diaper Size: Best Bottom Cloth on the smallest rise with one button showing in the center
Clothing Size: NB; 0-3 months

Davy:

Weight**: 10.4lbs (10lbs 6oz) -- up 19.7% in the past month!
Height: unknown
Diaper Size: Best Bottom Cloth on the smallest rise with one button showing in the center
Clothing Size: NB; 0-3 months
 
**no pediatrician appointment so these are very official weigh myself holding the baby calculations
 
 

Two Month Milestones

First Birthday Party: March 17 for Ryan
First trip to the Mall: March 23
First time in Church: March 24 for McKinley's Baptism at First Baptist Midlothian
First Bible Study: March 27 at Kitchen Group
Meeting Grandma and Grandpa Parker: March 29
Meeting Uncle Chad, Landry, and Cooper: March 29
Switch to 0-3 month clothes: March 28-31 (gradual change)
First Time Hosting Friends: March 30 when friends came for dinner
First Easter: March 31
Meeting Aunt Ellen and Uncle John: April 2
First Trip to the Arboreteum: April 5
First Concert: April 12 an outdoor Concert in the Park in Grand Prairie
 

Apr 9, 2013

Cloth Diapering Twins: The First Month

Or the post where I smugly declare success.
 
We have been cloth diapering for about a month now and it is safe to say that I LOVE it. I might be obsessed with these two fluffy butts. How could anyone not be?!? They are just too cute!
 
 
 
I received so many snide comments and underhanded remarks while I was pregnant and told people I planned to use cloth diapers on twins. Well let's just say that I want to smugly declare my success to every one of them.
 
I admit, I wasn't as positive that cloth diapering two would work as I appeared in my posts, but I REALLY wanted it to. And it does.
 
We started with cloth diapers when the little guys hit 8lbs and began using Best Bottoms Diapers and FuzzyBunz Diapers. Since then we have also tried Grovia, Sweet Peas, and Happy Heiny. We still have swaddlebees, blueberry, trend labs, bummis, and little monsters to try. The Best Bottoms are BY FAR my favorites. Sadly, no local DFW stores carry them but ordering online is SO easy!
 
A run-down of the brands we have tried from least favorite to favorite:
 
Grovia: I really like that these are AI2s (which means they have a liner and an insert that snaps in). This is an advantage because for a damp but not soiled diaper you can pop out the insert, replace it with a clean one and reuse the outer shell. I love that this means less to carry with me when we go out and less laundry. However, I don't care for the liners that Grovia sells. They also use a proprietary snap so I can't use their shell with any other brand of liner. Annoying. These diapers also don't fit my guys right. We have tried them three times (twice on Davy who is bigger and once on Tripp) and I have had one blowout and two leaky diapers. Not impressed. My four Grovia's and 10 liners will be listed for sale soon.
 
Happy Heiny: These diapers are pocket diapers which means the absorbent insert stuffs into the diaper. This means the whole diaper (shell and insert) needs changed with each diaper change. I thought I would like pocket diapers the best because touching the insert that had been peed on or soiled sounded pretty gross, but it isn't gross at all. And so these are just more work because you have to stuff them after doing laundry. These don't fit the little guys well, but since they aren't awful I will keep them and try them again when the boys have a bit more meat on their bones.
 
Sweet Pea in a Pod AI3s: Like an AI2, an AI3 has a snap in insert, but the insert is in two pieces for extra absorbency. The inserts in these diapers are very nice and very absorbent, but the actual diaper doesn't fit on my small guys. I think I will like these diapers better when the boys are bigger, but for now they gap around their little thighs. These diapers have a single gusset so that little gap means they leak every time.
 
FuzziBunz: FuzziBunz is a big dog in the cloth diaper world and has a great design. I love that the legs are a separate piece of sizable elastic so you get a really good snug fit. I dislike that they are pocket diapers. I just really prefer the AI2s!
 
Best Bottom: These are my favorites BY FAR. They fit great. They have a number of adjustments for fit. The inserts snap in and out really easily. They have a double gusset around the leg opening to contain any messes. My husband also likes these ones best, so they are our go to for diapering the boys.
 

We have enough of these that we are using them almost exclusively, which is the reason I haven't gotten around to trying all of the other brands in my stash. Best Bottoms always have snaps for the rise, but the waist can be either snaps or velcro. I only purchased snaps originally because I had heard that older babies will take the velcro off themselves, resulting in diaper catastrophes. After trying a velcro diaper (my grovias were velcro) I have ordered five velcro Best Bottoms to add to our stash. The velcro are so easy to use in the middle of the night when I am trying not to turn the lights on.


Same diaper. Snaps vs Velcro
In summary: I'm seriously loving cloth. Like giddy about the fluffy butts. Don't mind the laundry**. Smug satisfaction with each diaper. Loving cloth diapering. Even for twins!
 
Or maybe especially for twins. Who can resist this!
 
 
Fascinated by the dog.
Sometimes we wear clothes with our fluff and BabyLegs
 
 
** A full post of my laundry routine is being written, but the boys don't let me blog frequently so it might be a few days!
 

Unbreakable Swaddle?

The last two nights have been miserable sleep nights. Swaddling has become a problem. The boys have both discovered their hands and always want to be playing with them and trying to suck or gnaw on them. This isn't so great for swaddling.
 
We've outgrown the Swaddleme Blankets. They say 7-14lbs but started getting tight around 8lbs. Now at close to 11 lbs they are unusable.
 
Our favorites, the SwaddlePods were outgrown weeks ago. We miss those.
 
The Halo Sleep Sacks with Swaddle used to work great, but when the boys concentrate on finding their hands they can squeeze them up and lower the "wings" to below their armpits.
 
At this point, a swaddled receiving blanket is working best, but it's by no means perfect and with lots of struggling both boys can break it.
 
So, this has been my night:
9:30 -- Bedtime routine completed. Boys in RNPs to sleep.
9:55 -- Tripp asleep.
10:36 -- Davy asleep.
 
11:46 -- Davy breaks swaddle. Awake.
12:23 -- Tripp breaks swaddle. Awake.
1:49 -- Davy one arm out. Awake.
2:21 -- Davy breaks swaddle. Awake.
2:26 -- Tripp one arm out. Awake.
 
2:35 -- I give up. Who needs sleep.
2:40 -- Bottle. An hour earlier than normal in an attempt to calm them both down.
 
At around 2:45, Casey wandered into the nursery and asked if I needed help. I'm exhausted because I have yet to really fall into a good sleep so I sarcastically reply that unless he knows an unbreakable swaddle, there isn't much he can do. He disappeared into the bedroom and I wonder if he'll even remember asking. (The few times he's woken overnight, he normally doesn't remember what happens in his sleepy stupor).
 
Imagine my shock when he walks in 15 minutes later and hands me his iPad cued to this:
 
 
An unbreakable swaddle!
 
Both boys are now back in the RNPs. Tripp is asleep. Davy is close (darn coughing won't let him fall all the way asleep). I'll let you all know in the morning how it worked. Praying for a good 6 hour stretch.
 

Apparently, I ask and Casey delivers.

 

Apr 8, 2013

I Bought All the Things: Newborn Feeding Edition

Throughout my pregnancy, I did a decent job of posting my thought process and research on the baby things we purchased. Now we can analyze what we have. The NICU Edition can be found here.
 
Once we got home with the boys, we started using different (and more!) things. In fact, our living room turned into this:
Can you spot two babies?
 
The sheer amount of baby stuff available, and even the amount we have, is overwhelming. Some of these things are amazing while others are big busts. Lets look at a few of our heroes and our duds.
 

Feeding:

 
Consistent with NICU Edition:
 
I still love the Medela Symphony Breastpump. I still haven't gotten brave enough to trade it in on a purchased pump and in fact extended my rental until the end of June. I'm giving myself lots of time to get comfortable with pumping! When it comes time to purchase I am torn between the workhouse Pump in Style and the more portable Freestyle. Luckily, my insurance will cover a double electric pump, but probably not one of those and I have heard a lot of really questionable things about the pump it will cover. To go with my pump, I have switched to Pumpin' Pals flanges instead of the standard Medelas. Many women say they see an increase in output with these. I noticed a little bit (maybe?) although it might have just been that I was having a bad few days before I ordered. What I did notice was how much more comfortable they are! It is also easier on my back. Since the Pumpin Pals tilt downward I don't have to lean forward while pumping. Win.
 
We have now increased to two Boon Grasses set up side by side in the kitchen. I wish we had started with the larger Boon Lawn, but I had no way of knowing we would be a bottle-feeding family.
My bottle drying/storage set-up.
 
I still wear breast pads and still like the ones my MIL made best. They are softer than any of the other brands I have purchased. And cuter! Of the ones she made, I currently like the ones with PUL on one side best because I can't leak through them. I also really like the ones with minky or microfleece on the side closest to my skin because it wicks the wetness away and so I don't get as cold. What fabrics to use in homemade breast pads is hottly debated online and seems to really be personal preferences. With my Renaud's, the flannels feel to cold directly against my skin and cause problems for me.
 
The differences from NICU Edition:
 
I no longer like the Medela Hands Free Pumping Bustier. I discovered the Milkalicious Double Nursing Tank that allows nursing, pumping, and all day wear. This tank is absolutely amazing! I seriously LOVE it. I also bought the Rumina Pump and Nurse Tank, which is a better known more popular pumping tank, but it didn't fit me as well in the shoulders so I didn't find it as comfortable. I wear a pumping/nursing tank 24 hours a day and own three total, with a fourth being shipped as I type! I recently started leaving the house a bit more and so the tanks aren't always practical. I was introduced to the Arden bra, which is new to the market (in fact pre-orders for the bra won't ship until the end of April). I took advantage of the pre-sale and I am hoping that since it is a regular bra it will give me a bit more flexibility and work under dresses for summer but is still a hands free pumping bra that can be worn all day.
 
While in the NICU, the boys used single use bottles and nipples designed for preemies. We took a bunch of these home and continued using them. Eventually they wore out and we had to switch to a more permanent bottling solution. We started with Avent bottles because we had been given four of them from another twin mom. They were okay, but Avent doesn't have a preemie nipple and the flow was more than the little guys could handle. They were choking and spitting up quite a bit. We switched to Dr. Brown's with the level 0 nipple and have never looked back. Our only mistake was not getting enough to start with. Our advice: once you choose a bottle, get enough to last all night so you aren't washing bottles at 2AM. We now have enough to make it 24hrs, but I don't like seeing my sink that piled up so I only keep 6 bottles on the counter. If I'm too lazy to wash, I can always grab two bottles out of the cabinet.

While the little guys are feeding, I need baby chairs. They aren't to the high chair stage yet, so we use two baby lounge chairs (also known as Boppys). They are perfect for holding the babies up.
 


Boppys are NOT perfect for breastfeeding. In fact, I find it pretty uncomfortable. For our attempts at breastfeeding I use a My Breast Friend Twins Deluxe. This is comfortable for feeding one and allows tandem feeding, which we have done successfully but not with much frequency.
 

Finally, since Tripp and Davy are still small and below their ideal weights, I religiously track every feeding, every diaper, and every pumping session. To do this I use an amazing iPhone/iPad app called Total Baby. It tracks doctors appointments, shots, nursing, pumping, bottles, diapers, sleeping, baths, medications, etc. Most importantly, it will do it all separately for multiple children. I don't normally like having to pay for apps, but this one at $4.99 was a bargain.

The Duds:
 
In terms of feeding supplies, we haven't experienced much in the way of duds. We have a bottle warmer we recently purchased in the nursery. It was on clearance at Target for $7 because it was an online return. For the price, we are happy with it, but honestly putting the bottle in a bowl of boiling water works just as well and doesn't take any longer so I wouldn't spend much money on a bottle warmer. That said, it does make middle of the night feedings easier because I can have the bottles ready to go in the attached cooler and then transfer them to warmer when the boys wake up. It is nice not having to go to the kitchen before the feed.

I am now trying to feed two babies and do it on my own for the large majority of feeds. This means I need a system because holding and feeding one while the other screams absolutely breaks my heart. So, I bottle prop**. I tried a fancy bottle swing, but the angle it held the bottle on caused it to flow too quickly for my little guys so those are now living in the closet. We have good luck using a rolled cotton blanket on the Boppy pillow (preferred; pictured top) or even the tummy time pillow on the Boppy pillow (pictured bottom).

 
Still to come: Newborn Entertainment and Newborn Transportation (get excited for this one -- it has a giveaway!)


**Go ahead perfect mothers and judge. I for one am completely comfortable with it. I sit on the ground with them and talking to them and this way they both get to eat. We get plenty of skin-to-skin and one-on-one time when we practice breastfeeding, during storytime, when we sing songs and play, etc.
 
 

Apr 7, 2013

Homemade Gripe Water Recipe

By popular request, the post where I share more of of my crunchy granola side and how I make my own homeopathic gripe water for the boys.
 
First, the backstory:
 
Before we even left the NICU, the boys were both dealing with upset stomach problems, at that time primarily painful gas, but eventually also reflux. In the beginning, we used Mylacon to help them, but the NICU nurses all recommended we use gripe water when we get home as a natural cure for painful gas. I liked the idea of a homeopathic solution, so once we got home we tried it out.
 
I was impressed. Just a little bit in their night time bottles alleviated their pain and their fussiness. I'm not saying its a perfect cure-all, but it certainly cured a lot.
 
But, we have twins and we were going through a lot of it. At $10 a bottle, it wasn't a good long term solution.
 
So, now I make my own.
 
Their are three primary ingredients in gripe water: chamomile, fennel, and ginger. Fennel has been used by herbalists and homeopaths for centuries to help with indigestion and as a gas-reliever. It also has some pain relieving properties. Ginger is a great herb for any problems in thr gastrointestinal tract, including nausea and gas. The third ingredient I use, chamomile, is great at reducing restlessness and insomnia and helps with irritability and anxiousness.
 
Some brands can also include peppermint, sugar, honey, agave, caraway, and/or aloe. Both peppermint and honey have properties I would like to include in my gripe water recipe, but aren't recommended for babies under 6 months. I'm unsure why the commercially available gripe waters would include these. I do plan to experiment and perhaps edit my recipe when the boys get older.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups water
  • 1 finger ginger
  • 1 Tbsp fennel seed, crushed
  • 2 chamomile tea bags (or 2 tsp fresh)
  • Agave or sugar to taste

Recipe

  • Add ginger and fennel to water and bring to a boil. I should put my crushed fennel into a tea ball but I can't find mine, so the loose tea attachment for the Kuerig works well. I know others who allow it loose in the pot. I cut my ginger into large chunks so it can go loose. You could also do finer ginger and put it in your tea ball as well.
  • Allow to boil softly until it reaches a golden amber color.

  • Add chamomile tea.
  • Cover and allow to steep for 20-30 minutes.

  • Strain.

  • If you are going to give it with a syringe, add agave or sugar at this point. I mix it into bottles and so don't feel the need to sweeten it.

  • Serve to baby. I add 5-10mL to each evening and overnight bottle. You can give up to an ounce from what I have read. You can also use a medicine dropper and give it to them directly.
  • Watch the content little fellow emerge!

  •  
    I also dilute it with water and ice and drink it myself to help make my breastmilk easier for the boys to digest. When I drink it myself, I find the taste a bit bitter and so add a wee bit of honey into my glass. It really helps with Tripp and Davy's gas and reflux and is easy to make. I store it in the fridge and find it is good for a few days. It does eventually start to become less effective so I don't keep it more than 3-4 days.
     


    This is BY FAR the most popular post on my blog and I am so glad I am able to share this little money saving trick with all of you.  I feel so great knowing exactly what in in the things I give my boys.  I have made gripe water for the twins and the little guy and really think it's great.  If you like this post, check out my other homemade homeopathic trick: homemade pedialyte! Another chance to save some money and not fill your little one with unnecessary chemicals.



    I also hope you decide to stick around and explore the blog.  Let me introduce myself!. I'm Lexy a stay-at-home-mom née doctoral candidate (and hopefully a full PhD by the end of 2014!). I'm married to Casey, my college sweetheart and the most amazing man I have ever had the honor of knowing, and together we have 3 little men (the twins, Tripp and Davis born 1/13/13 and little James born 7/2/14) and an 8lb dog.
    The first picture of our family of five!

    I blog about our crazy life with three kids born in 17.5 months. I blog about living dairy free (Davis has a severe dairy allergy, Tripp has a dairy intolerance, and James was recently diagnosed with a dairy intolerance. All of these issues with milk protein break this cheese loving mama's heart!). I blog about my dissertation and the process of finishing it while raising three little boys. I blog because I have a heart for mama 's and want to share my struggles, my joys, and my reality with y'all.

    I'm glad you are here and I really hope you decide to stay a while. I have a heart for moms and a heart for this online community. I would love to connect with you.  Follow me on Instagram or Twitter - my personal handle is @LexyJill both places or you can follow the blog @CrazyCassLife. Or Follow me on Bloglovin (link off to the right) and get notified every time I post here at Crazy Cass Life.


     

    Apr 5, 2013

    On My Own

    Wednesday night, my iPad died. Totally completely kerputz.
     
    Obviously this isn't okay. All of my pumping logs and feeding logs are on my iPad. All of my while pumping entertainment is on my iPad. All of my half written blog posts are on my iPad. Did I mention my pumping logs? And feeding logs? Really not okay.
     
    So, Thursday morning I got myself and the boys dressed and ready. Alone.
     
    I got my diaper bag packed. Alone.
     
    I loaded two car seats and the double stroller into the car. Alone.
     
    I unloaded two car seats and the stroller from the car. Alone.
     
    I headed into Northpark Mall. With two infants.
     
    And it was great!
     
    In the Apple store
     
    We went to the Apple store and got my iPad fixed.
     
    We went to the food court and met Casey for lunch.
     
    We went to the nursing room in the mall and nursed Tripp (OMG I nursed a baby. And he was happy. I haven't done a post on nursing and breastfeeding and pumping and exclusively pumping and trying to nurse so unless we've chatted you don't realize what a HUGE deal this is!) while I finished giving Davy a bottle.
     
    We walked around the mall for a few hours.
     
    I didn't shop.In fact, the boys stayed covered up completely in their car seats. (Confession: I did try on a skirt. But it was adorable. And on sale. And too big. Whomp Whomp.) Just walking around and seeing all of the people was cathartic.
     
    And more importantly, knowing I did it on my own (and successfully!) really increased my confidence that I can handle this mother of twins thing.
     

    Apr 3, 2013

    I Bought All the Things: NICU Edition

    Throughout my pregnancy, I did a decent job of posting my thought process and research on the baby things we purchased. Now we can analyze what we have.
     
    Medela Symphony Breastpump: I didn't buy a breastpump before the boys arrival and instead opted to use the hospital pump. If I had a spare $1500 lying around I would buy this thing. So great! So wonderful! So useful! Right now I am actually still renting it from the hospital. At some point I will need to return it and buy a pump for permanent use, but I'm just not ready to give up my Symphony. We are really fortunate and our insurance is covering the cost of the rental (well, theoretically, they havent actually paid yet) and will also buy me a double electric pump when the time comes. I am currently exclusively pumping for the boys (although we have had a smattering of success with nursing so their is still some hope!) and I am so glad I am able to pump enough for them to receive exclusively breast milk. I will write a full post on the joys of exclusive pumping at some point. Get ready.
     
    Boon Grass: While the boys were in the NICU, I was pumping. And pumping. And pumping again. Every two hours at the beginning. This means I spent a good deal of time in front of the sink washing pump parts and storage bottles. We were so glad we had this drying rack! Once we got home with the boys and were washing bottles and nipples as well, we wished we had registered for the larger sized Lawn instead. Our solution: we have two sets of grass sitting side by side at the house now.
     
    Adorable breast pads made by my MIL
     
    Breast Pads: I was given some of the Lansinoh Disposable Breast Pads. They itched. I hated them. I bought the Medela Disposable Breast Pads. They itched worse. I hated them. (If anyone wants them, I have an almost full box - they are individually wrapped so no eww factor in passing them along). So, I bought cloth breast pads. My favorite ones I purchased were the Bamboobies. Since I bought them, my mother in law has made me numerous pairs using flannel, microfleece, and PUL and they are even more comfortable than the Bamboobies are. Sorry, can't link to that favorite thing!
     
    Motherlove Herbal Nipple Cream: Thank you, Casi, for cluing me into this stuff! Lanolin is the traditional choice for nipple cream and I started out using it at the hospital, but Motherlove is superior in every possible way. It is gentle. It is all natural. It doesn't stain my clothes. I don't feel oily and gross. And most importantly, it works better. I also have Earth Mama Angel Baby Nipple Butter and it is very similar to the Motherlove. I'm really not sure which I like best. I do know I'm not going back to Lanolin.
     
    Our NICU room. The poof is sitting between the two gliders.
    Poof: We have an outdoor fabric ottoman (actually we have two) that we took up to the NICU with us to use as a footrest while we sat holding the boys. It made the hospital chair SO much more comfortable! I highly recommend making the space in the NICU your own because you will be spending a lot of time there. Added bonus to the poof: it isn't a baby item it is an item that lives in our sunroom. After we left the NICU it went back to living in the sunroom.
     
    In the hospital wearing my PJs. Not wearing makeup. Haven't brushed my hair.
    Soma Button Down Pajamas: Buy yourself good pajamas for the hospital stay. I was there for four days and spent a lot of time walking around the L&D floor as I went from my room to the NICU throughout the day. These PJs were perfect because I could quickly unbutton to pump or do skin to skin time with the guys.
     
    Medela Pumping Bustier: While I was in the NICU, I thought this pumping bustier was amazing. It allows you to have the use of your hands so you can get a drink, use a TV remote, or hand express to increase output. The only downside to the bustier is that it has to be put on and taken off before every pump. After I got home, I found a hands free pumping tank which is day and night better than the bustier because you wear it all day long, but this is NICU edition so I'll save the tank for another post!
     
     
    If it seems like all of our favorite things during the NICU days are related to breast feeding you would be correct. As a NICU Mom, the most important thing I could do for the guys was feed them. They were too young to use carriers, toys, or anything stimulating. During the NICU time, the boys spent the majority of their time sleeping with a feed every three hours (on schedule at 2, 5, 8, and 11). During the feedings we were able to hold them, snuggle them, get good skin to skin time, change diapers, and generally love on them. Basically premature aren't born yet and so they do the same things a baby in the womb does: NOT MUCH. Even less than a newborn! They eat and sleep.
     
    Stay tuned for I Bought All the Things: Newborn Edition with more products that are relevant to more people (since I hope none of y'all have to experience the NICU!)
     
     
     

    Apr 2, 2013

    Easter: PhotoEssay

     
    Happy Easter!
     
    The Easter Bunny brought us our first Bible, two Winkels, and a collection of Dr. Seuss board books.
     
    We read the Easter story together.
    On Good Friday we me our great grandparents for the first time.
    Four generation of Parkers on Easter
     
    All of the Cass grandkids
     
    The whole Cass Clan
     
    Happy (Hoppy?) Family on Easter