My must haves for newborns

A few months ago when I was still pregnant with Hadessah I made a wish list of all the things that I was excited to use/try when she arrived.  Now that she is here and she is now a little over a month I wanted to share with you guys my must haves for a newborn.  These things are tried and true and we literally use them everyday.  They truly make life easier so I am so excited to share them with you all, especially if you are a new or expecting mommy!

1. A few months ago I had mentioned that I wanted to try a baby wrap, specifically the Moby Wrap.  When my husband and I went to go pick one out I realized that they are absolutely huge!  There is so much fabric involved and we just thought that it was way to complicated for our taste so we decided to go with the UltraSoft Magic Infant Carrier by Chicco.  Oh my goodness I can't even tell you how much I LOVE this carrier.  It is so simple to put on and adjust and it is so soft!  It is also extremely ergonomic and fits the baby's body like a glove. I put her in it sometimes when I am just doing chores around the house and she loves to just hang out watch me (she's just starting to smile...MY HEART).  She falls asleep in it often too, which means it has to be comfortable enough for her taste! 

2. So far my husband and I have noticed that Hadessah is almost the complete opposite of Ezrah (our first born) when she was a baby in every way and swaddling is first on the list.  Ezrah loved to be swaddled and would fall asleep almost right away when we laid her down for the night.  Hadessah on the other hand will do everything in her power to escape the swaddle. For safety reasons we decided to try out these swaddle blankets by a brand called NoJo, which have a pouch that you put the baby in and velcro on the flaps to keep the blanket from opening up.  These things have been such a great help when it comes to bedtime.  They have darts in the shoulder area, which makes the blanket just fit her body perfectly and in a few simple steps she's as snug as a bug in a rug!  I will admit that Hadessah is a fighter and she has managed to get her little hands out a few times but the beauty about this blanket is that there is no extra fabric so even when she does manage to wriggle her way out she is not in any danger of getting her face caught in the blanket. It helps this mommy sleep a lot easier and I seriously cannot recommend this blanket enough!

3. Hadessah is still doing a lot of napping during the day, which is great because I can get a lot work done but she does not sleep very well at night and by the time ten o'clock comes around, when the rest of us are ready to go to bed she is wide awake. We decided to try a noise machine to see if it would help sooth her to sleep and I have to say it works really well! We picked this one up my MyBaby at Target.  It has three different lullabies and you can also choose from the sounds of rain or the ocean.  You can also adjust the sound, which is great because we can set it where it's not too loud for Bryan and I.  The best part about this sound machine though is that it has a projector that shines on the ceiling.  The projector changes between three different sea animals and the images are really bright and clear so the baby gets really engrossed in the movements.  Overall this had made a significant difference, especially after late night feedings and I don't think we could ever go without it! 

4. This one seems like the most obvious but it is a MUST!  Hadessah is still at the point where she swims in bibs so we aren't using them just yet.  Instead we use burp cloths whenever we are feeding her, and she is a messy eater!  We literally have one in every single room and it just makes it so convenient that we don't have to change her clothes several times a day.  I use the ones from Carter's.  They are super cute and soft so they are non-abrasive on her skin.  They also come in packs of four, which is great because burp cloths are like pacifiers, constantly getting lost! 

5. Since I am not breast feeding Hadessah we of course have to use bottles, although even if you are breast feeding these can come in handy for those times when you are pumping, or even if you pump exclusively.  So it's obvious that bottles are a necessity for us but it's more about the brand than anything else.  I highly recommend Dr. Brown's bottles because there is a venting system that helps with an even flow and it reduces air bubbles.  This helps with digestion and ultimately reduces gas making baby a happy camper!  We used these with Ezrah when she was a newborn as well and I would never use anything else! 

6. Ok, so I saved my very favorite for last! Since I became a mother for the first time, three and a half years ago I have gone through at least five or six diaper bags.  Every time I got a new one I was convinced that it would be "the one" and they always disappointed me.  I first heard to Petunia Pickle Bottom when I was out shopping with my mom one day when Ezrah was only about a year and a half and I really loved it but I looked at the price tag and was like "oh no!" I won't lie they are not cheap.  So I never really got it out of my head but I just wasn't willing to spend the money.  I continued to get frustrated with the other bags I was buying because they were just low in quality and didn't do what I needed to do.  I will admit that I am a bit OCD when it comes to organization and when it takes twice as long to go out with your kids you really want something that is going to keep everything well organized to you can get to what you need right away, with no digging.  So when I found out I was pregnant again I told myself that I was going to get one of these bags.  The number one thing that I was not going to compromise on was that the bag had to be structured enough to stand up on it's own when nothing was in it.  In my opinion there is nothing worse than a floppy diaper bag.  

Structured=OCD satisfied 

Determined that this would be the last diaper bag I bought I read all the reviews on the website and watched about 10 reviews on YouTube before I actually bought it, which in the research made me feel a lot better.  So I ended up going with the black and gold Boxy Backpack, which matches my style really well.  I have had this bag now for about three months (I bought it while I was still pregnant) and I LOVE it so much!  The quality for one is fantastic and it has all the pockets I need to stay organized and I can wear it like a backpack, which is my favorite because it keeps my hands free for baby and toddler business.  It also has a changing pad that is built in so when we are out I can just set it on the end changing table and unzip the pad out so I don't have to lay my baby on gross changing tables.  Anyway, I have gone on and on but I just wanted to say that it was totally worth the investment and at the end of the day going from bag to bag cost me just as much.  I wish I would have made the decision much earlier! 

I hope all of you new or expecting moms found this helpful and I hope you all have a wonderful week!  See you again soon!


Introducing Hadessah

Hi guys!

I know I have been MIA for the past couple months but I had so much on my plate with Thanksgiving and Christmas and school AND preparing for the arrival of our second baby girl! Plus if I am completely honest the last couple months of pregnancy for me was totally miserable and I just needed to take a few things off my plate in order to allow myself more time to relax. So now that it is the new year and I am finally starting to feel like myself again I am going to start writing again and what better way to start then by introducing our newest addition!

When Bryan returned from his year long tour in Korea a year ago we knew that we wanted to have another baby.  If you do the math you will quickly be able to tell that we didn't waste any time! We found out that we were pregnant in March and couldn't have been more excited.  Now the most exciting part is when we fast forward to June.  We initially were going to wait until our 20 week ultrasound to find out the sex of our baby but I got the idea to surprise Bryan for Father's Day and go to a private technician to find out early (I was only 15 weeks then).  So I booked the appointment and tried to surprise Bryan.  Of course, just like all surprises involving Bryan, I failed, he figured it out on the way there (sigh, I'll get him good someday!).  So we got there and the technician started the ultrasound and...nothing.  The baby was snuggled up right in my side and did not want to move so after about 15 minutes the technician had me jog up and down the hall, I even through in a few jumping jacks.  I was way to excited to have to wait and come back!  Well it worked!  He continued on with the ultrasound and said we were having a GIRL!  I seriously could not even believe it.  From the beginning of my pregnancy I had a feeling it was a girl but I honestly went in convinced that we were going to have a boy but here we were about to bring in our second girl into the world!  I left completely elated.

After a few moments of sorrow Bryan was excited too! ;)

Fast forward a few more months and we come to the day that Hadessah was born.  I woke up at about four in the morning with contractions they quickly progressed to become about three minutes apart so I knew it was time to go to the hospital.  Once we got there they took my blood pressure and it turned out to by higher than normal so they had to test me for preeclampsia and said they would not be able to admit me until the test results came back.

No admission. No epidural.

I am so not the kind of girl that wants to deliver naturally...give me the drugs, give me all the drugs!

I spent the next five hours waiting to be admitted and it was HORRIBLE!  My contractions were so intense and at that point they were coming about every minute so once one contraction ended I was experiencing almost no relief until the next one started.  This was my second child so I had done this before but I didn't remember it being so beyond painful!  I literally thought I was going to die!  Thank the Lord for my husband who held my hand through it all.  My mom was also there with us the whole time and she was such a great support too!

At about nine in the morning just when I felt like I couldn't go any longer in such pain they finally came in and told me the test results came back normal and that they could admit me.  The got me a room and the anesthesiologist came almost immediately to give me my epidural, which was basically the highlight of my entire year!  After that I felt amazing and just got as much rest as I could before it was time to deliver.  They came in later in the early evening to check on me and told me it was time it was time to deliver and about ten minutes later Hadessah was here!

She was born on December 8th at 5:50 pm.  She was 7 lbs. 7 oz, 18 inches long, and had a full head of hair!

When they first laid her on my chest my heart absolutely exploded!  I never knew I could be so blessed with two such beautiful girls!

Ezrah has also been so amazing!  It's something we really prayed about during my pregnancy, that God would prepare her heart to share her mommy and daddy with her new sister.  He has been so faithful.  Ezrah loves to help dress her and change her diapers and is always giving her lots of hugs and kisses! Our days are never perfect.  We wake up two to three times a night and now we experience two times the whining and two times the tantrums and we are tired!  But through all of the stresses of each day there is one thing that remains consistent and that is the fact that we are immeasurably blessed!  We thank the Lord everyday for our two girls and we are so excited for the journey that lies ahead as parents of two!

The Story Behind Hadessah's Name 

When it came to picking names for our children Bryan and I not only wanted to choose unique names that not many other people have but we also really wanted to focus on the meaning behind them. Both our girls names are Hebrew in origin but we decided to spell both a little differently. So Ezrah's name means the Lord's helper, which we absolutely love.  Her middle name is Elizabeth, which runs in my family so we knew we wanted to use it but it also means devoted to God.  We want to raise our children to become Godly women so Ezrah Elizabeth seems so fitting of our desire for her to grow to become a follower of Jesus who goes out to be his hands and feet. 

Ok, so now for the story behind Hadessah.  Unlike our first Bryan and I actually agreed on her name almost immediately (we talked about a few other names before we fell in love with the name Ezrah).  Hadessah is inspired by the name Hadassah found in the book of Esther.  Queen Esther actually had another name before she was declared queen and that was Hadassah.  The direct translation of Hadessah is myrtle tree, which doesn't seem like much at first but myrtle is known for having a pleasantly sweet fragrance, which directly reflects the character of queen Esther.  She was a compassionate woman and leader. Now contrary to popular belief we did not come up with her middle name Rey by watching Star Wars (although it is a fun coincidence). Rey actually means king in Spanish so paired with her first name Hadessah Rey translates into Compassionate King, which is to serve as a reminder in our household that we serve a tender and compassionate God and that he is good. 

So there you have it, the story behind our girls' names.  I know it seems kind of complicated but we love them because they really mean something special to us as followers of Jesus and as a family! 

I hope you all have a lovely weekend, I will be back with more soon!