Thursday, October 22, 2015

Baby Prep

Nursery. Nearly complete, needing a few minor touches here and there. Tour coming soon.

Name. Got it, love it, yet saving to share until the his big arrival.

Pump. Ordered and should be arriving any day. I am excited to give breastfeeding another shot. The first go-round came with lots of challenges. From latching initially, to dozing during his midnight feeds... Al could just never seem to nurse long enough to fill his little belly. He was tearful, I was tearful, and so the unfortunate double breast-pump was our solution. It did the job, but it was more of a hassle than anything else. I was bottle feeding, pumping, washing bottles, repeat... it was three times the work and eventually, after about 5 months, I tuckered out. My supply dwindled during his recovery, mostly due to stress, but also because I headed back to work, which was an additional stressor. Towards my final month of nursing, I did breastfeed him some during the day here and there, and my comfort level did grow quite a bit. I started to kind of love and look forward to those quiet, special moments of bonding with my boy. I really pray this next time comes easily to both me and my littlest one. I know now not to put too much pressure on myself. I know to focus on his hunger cues as opposed to the clock. I know about 'cluster feeding' in the evening and how to prepare for it. I know that breastfeeding is beautiful and to not be overly modest about such a normal and natural thing. I'm ready to give it another go.

Hospital Bag. It's packed and ready to roll. Just the essentials.
For Mom - a button down pj set, slippers,  flip-flops (for showering), two nursing tanks, new (large, cotton) black undies, leggings, a loose tunic or two, and my go-to prenatal vitamins.
For Dad- comfy sweats, slippers, chargers, iPad, camera, and snacks.
For the Babe - a going home outfit, hat included (newborn and 3 months, just in case he's a chub), swaddles, a boppy pillow for nursing, pacifiers, and a soft blanket for the ride home.

Big Brother. Well, I'm not sure if he's fully prepared, but it's safe to say we have made a solid effort to prep Alec for this huge life change as much as possible. We've read about five books about becoming a big brother (at least 15 times each). We've taught him the importance of being mommy and daddy's big helper once baby arrives. We've purchased at least three new 'big bro' tees for him to rock when he visits his new little brother at the hospital. We have lined up my parents to watch him overnight for a couple days or so. They will be staying at our house, with the goal being to disrupt his routine as minimally as possible. We have put together a special big brother kit, consisting of some new toys, movies, games, and snacks to keep him occupied while we are away. I realize that no matter what we do to plan for our new babe's arrival, it will no doubt be a large adjustment for Alec. But I figure every effort to make the transition just that more gentle is worth it.

Baby Gear. Fortunately, because it's our second, and because it's a boy, we have most of what we need. We have the swing, the rock'n'play, and the pack'n'play. We have a play mat, a bumbo seat, and about a hundred swaddles, velcro included. We have bins upon bins of clothes that will hopefully translate into the appropriate season. We have three different baby carriers, an infant car seat with two bases, and three different single strollers. But although we have a ton of things baby, there were a few new things we needed to invest in.

A double stroller, we chose this one, currently on sale at Babies'r'us for only $239.99 (which is actually a stellar price). I was initially interested in this one, but after reading a ton of reviews and an actual test drive at the store, I was super happy with our choice.

A bassinet. I actually didn't have to purchase a bassinet, as my sister had one that she was willing to lend. I'm sure some folks don't think this item is incredibly essential, but to me it is, and I'll tell you why. Alec slept in the rock'n'play for his first few months of life. Because that darn piece of baby gear is so dang cozy, we literally had to wean him out of it. The crib transition was incredibly challenging, involving a wedge, a fleece blanket, AND a towel roll. Excessive I know, but it was about survival. Sooo, in an effort to avoid all the extra hassle, the bassinet is going to be my initial go-to.

An additional crib. We chose this one, super basic, but all we should need for the first six months or so. I just didn't feel like Alec was ready to go into a toddler bed. He has been sleeping so well in his crib, I figure, why disrupt the routine right before a huge life adjustment. So we will attempt the crib weaning, as well as, potting training after the hustle bustle of the holiday season. Hey, if all is well, why rock the boat?! At least that's my motto.

Some fresh pacifiers and a few bottles. I didn't go to town when purchasing these two items, because I remember going through lot of trial and error before we found the go-to pacifier and bottle that worked for Alec. Every kid is different, so I didn't want to limit baby number two to what worked for baby number one. I'll let him decide what he likes best, and take it from there.

A sound machine. A must in my book, especially now that we have two children. These handy little devices drown out just about every noise, and allow for a restful night's sleep, even when chaos is potentially brewing in another room of your home. That noisy trash truck, not a concern. Putting away dishes during nap time, no problemo. I also love the projector feature on this particular model. We didn't use it initially, but now gazing at the stars has become part of our nightly routine with Alec.

Anyways, that's the extent of our baby prep. I've done some intense cleaning, rearranging, and organizing as well. And at this stage in the game, I am feeling more than ready to welcome our new little babe into our home. I pray that labor comes easily. I pray that Alec adjusts well. I pray that God gives me the strength and patience to handle two little ones on my own each day. Wish me luck! And a huge shout out to all you moms out there doing your best to make it work each and everyday. Motherhood is quite possibly the most rewarding, yet challenging, adventure that I have taken on in my lifetime that is for sure.
I am so ready to experience this cuteness all over again. Bring on that baby smell, those snuggly warm naps, and milk comas galore.