Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Breastfeeding Tips & Challenges

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Today I'm guest posting about a topic that is very important to me over at Lovely Little Things

Breastfeeding challenges and tips :-)

Also, I read this article and it made me cry. So beautifully well written!


Monday, September 23, 2013

Eight Months Old

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Your seventh month has been such a fun one! You are now 8 months old which just suddenly seems too close to being a year old. I wish time would slow down a tiny bit. Do I say that every month? I'm trying to soak up every stage but they seem to be flying by. Here's how your seventh month went...
Sleep: You have put yourself on a pretty strict nighttime schedule. You completely melt down if we try and keep you up later than 6:30 pm. You wake up pretty consistently at around 6 am. The few times I tried to stretch it and keep you up until 7:30, you retaliated by waking up at 5 am instead. A 6:30 bedtime makes it challenging because daddy doesn't even get home until 5:30. If we're going to go out to eat, we have to make it snappy.
Loving: You are loving bath time! You can happily sit in it for 30 minutes babbling and splashing. The cup I use to rinse your hair is your favorite toy, and the only thing you want to play with in the bath.
Food: You are still nursing every 3 hours or so. You eat solid food twice a day. Usually lunch and dinner, and then some puffs in between :-) You've now had green beans, peas, squash, carrots, apples, pumpkin, spinach, pear, bananas, peaches, and avocado. Pureed of course :-) We've also put grapes, melons and plums in your silicone mesh feeder.
New: You are so fast in your walker! You know how to navigate the whole house now, and chasing Lucy is your new favorite pastime. You can back up and turn around, and when you really get going you put your hands out at your sides and you look like a little airplane ready to take off. You also continually bash into my ankles when I'm trying to cook dinner. You've started pulling on my legs or dress. 

You waved hi for the first time! To a lady in the grocery store, go figure. She came up to you and waved and I turned to look at you and you were doing it back. I squealed out loud, and proceeded to wave to you in every aisle just to watch you wave back at me. It is amazing how fast you pick up on things. 

The past few weeks you have figured out how to pick up your puffs and put them in your mouth. You starting trying to do this a couple of months ago, but now you're a pro. If I put 4 or 5 of them down on your tray you want to hold them all, and shovel them all in your mouth. 

It's been so fun watching you recognize words. If I ask you, "Where's doggy Lulu?" Your head darts around until you find Lucy and then you smile very pleased with yourself. I can also sing the baby signing time song, and you speed in your walker over to the tv and wait for it to come on. We usually watch this once a day when I'm trying to make dinner and you're getting tired and starting to meltdown. 
A couple of days before you turned 8 months old you crawled for the first time! We were face-timing with Gigi and Pops (Brandon's parents) and you started crawling towards the phone. You can get your knees under, and then you kind of lunge forward. You go back and forth between this, and dragging yourself forward with your arms. You have to take a few breaks in between to rest your heavy head, hehe. The best "bait" is my phone or a remote control. How cute is the picture above of you face-timing with gigi? So excited to recognize people on the phone!
You really are my little buddy. I love spending my days with you.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Citrus Lane Box Review: For All Mamas

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If you decide to join, use this link and receive 50% off your first box!
Box subscriptions are all the rage right now. It seems like they have a box for everything these days! Make-up, accessories, snacks, dog treats! You name it, they have a box subscription service for it. And really, who doesn't want to receive a wrapped gift every month containing several surprises? When I realized they had one for babies, I was ecstatic! Citrus Lane was started in 2011 by a group of moms who hand select 4-5 products every month that have been researched, tried and tested.
My package arrived wrapped in bright yellow tissue paper with a note card describing each product in the box. They tailor boxes for children from newborn to five years old. I received the 6 month old box.
Okay, let's see what we got!

1. On-The-Go from ZoLi (Retail $15?)
This could not have come at a better time! I've been carting around a huge container of puffs in my diaper bag, and was considering using a small Tupperware container. This travel container from ZoLi is cute and practical. Since Avery is only eating puffs at this time, I just use the orange top part with the lid. You can stack as many as you need - one, two, three or all four. When she starts being able to eat other finger-foods, I'll add on the rest, one by one. It's such a convenient way to bring a whole meal for your child out to a restaurant, or the park, etc. It's also BPA and phthalate- free! I found a similar one on Amazon but it's a 3 tier. It seems the 4 tier is no longer available.

2. Jittering Giraffe from Tiny Love (retail $7.99)
I love that this cute little guy comes with a giant clip that I can clip on to almost anything! The great thing about this toy is that it vibrates when you pull on it. There is also a bell that rings when you shake it. Each part of the giraffe is made of a different texture and will help little one master hand-eye coordination.

3. California Baby Travel Set (retail $2.00 ?)
California Baby skincare products are all toxin free and recommended by more than 50 pediatrician and dermatologists. This is their travel set which makes it easy to throw in your diaper bag. I'm guessing at the retail price. The travel sets on the website are $5-6 and contain 5 products.

4. NurturMeals from NurturMe (retail ?)
I have only given Avery fruit and veggie purees and have skipped rice cereal or any kind of grain so far. This mix is made of peas, quinoa and apples. No other additives which I loved! It's certified organic and gluten-free. You can add breast-milk, formula or water and voila, a meal. She LOVED it and actually cried when it was all gone. They are only $1 for each packet. I really enjoy making Avery's food in our babyfood maker, but I think I'd love to have a few of these packets to throw in her diaper bag. I don't have to worry about them spoiling or getting too hot (like I do with her purees). With these packets I can just make them when I need them if we're out and about. I love that I never would have discovered something like this without the Citrus Lane box.

5. Little Buddy Wipes from Me4Kidz (retail $2.50)
Again, these wipes came at a great time (this box really was tailored for a 6 month old). Now that Avery eats solid foods, things sure can get messy around here. It's so nice to have these in my diaper bag to wipe her hands and face after a meal. She is also putting everything in her mouth these days, so it's nice to wipe down her toys (or cough, my phone, cough) before handing them over. They kill 99% of germs which I love, and they are alcohol and sting free :-) The scent is cucumber and tea tree.

6. Postagram from Sincerely Inc. (retail $10)
I cannot tell you how excited I was to see this! A week before I got my Citrus Lane box I actually used this app to send my mother-in-law a thank you card for watching Avery the other night while Brandon and I went to a baseball game. You can do it all right from your phone. You just choose a picture, and enter your text, voila! Postcard sent. There is actually a perforated edge around the picture so you can pop it right out and stick in on the fridge :-) There is also a section in the app to keep track of friends' and families birthdays, so you can always send a last minute card. It couldn't be easier for a mom who can't always run out to the store to get a card! 
This card is good for 10 postagrams cards!

Overall, I was impressed with what we got! They guarantee that there will be at least a $25 dollar value (which is how much the box will cost you). In this case, the ZoLi containers, Giraffe, and Postagrams alone retail for $32. When you add in the wipes, sunscreen, and the meal, it's probably around $37. I really think this is a genius idea for a mom! There are so many baby/kid products out there that it gets slightly overwhelming. There have been things I have wanted to try, but I don't want to waste my money in case Avery doesn't like it. I like that this box is hand-selected by other moms who have actually researched and tried these products. If you don't have kids of your own, it would make an excellent gift for a new mom/baby shower gift. It would also be a great gift for a toddler, or 4/5 year old because they get a box every month with toys/products/surprises.

I found that our box really was tailored to Avery's age, and of course now I feel compelled to sign-up for a monthly subscription. I can't wait to discover more products that I otherwise would never have tried!

If you decide to join, use this link and receive 50% off your first box!

*Only new, first-time Citrus Lane subscribers who start a monthly subscription are eligible to redeem this offer.  Multi-month packages and gift subscriptions do not qualify.
**I was not compensated for this review but did receive a complimentary box. All opinions are my own. However, if you do choose to buy a subscription and use the link provided in my blog, I will get a credit and love you forever!** 

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