Monday, 16 June 2014

Bib and Cloth Organization Solutions

Once we started feeding Everett solids, close to 7 months, we realized we needed some storage on the main floor to keep things contained.

The first solution was a hamper attached to the back of the high chair.

 We used a wet bag and simply attached it with to scrap pieces of fabric. Quick and simple and very effective.

The best part about this is that I can simply take this laundry and do a pre-soak before I wash it so that the food crusties and stains are minimized.

I also wanted to have a place for the clean bibs and cloths to be stored. I found the perfect container at Target . There's plenty of room to store all of our bibs and a bunch of cloths.

No more bibs/cloths all over the place, clean or dirty.

Friday, 6 June 2014

Birthday Photo Tradition

Having seen a cute idea for a photo - one year old sitting beside a frame of said baby as a new born - I decided to give it a try. The plan is to then take the photo of the one year old, put it in the frame next year and take a photo with the then 2 year old.

Two problems:
I went back to look for my inspiration source but couldn't find it and now can't compare.
The glare on the photo in the frame. I might have to photo-shop the picture to fix it.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

E's First Birthday Party - Little Man Theme

So, I was not planning an elaborate 1st birthday party at all. Just family and few friends for a BBQ at the at a Conservation Area 2 minutes from our house. Then I started looking at Pinterest... Here are the birthday details!



We used the downloads for decorations including the cupcake picks (which were attached to toothpicks with washi tape) as well as the bottle covers. Not shown here was a sign with the punch saying "Wet Your Whiskers".

We made favours using the favour download. We scooped turquoise jelly beans and candy lime slices into bags and stapled the downloaded favour tags onto each bag. 

We also attached the "Thanks!" tags onto the favours for the kids by hole-punching the tag and using a sheer ribbon to attach them onto squirter toys and bubble wands. I put the kid's names on each one to assure everyone got one before leaving.


Here is our version. We accordion folded each small dessert-sized napkin then attached it to the fork with a ribbon and a double-sided adhesive.


My mom made this adorable onesie for E and we paired it with his grey chevron BabyLegs for his birthday photoshoot.


I ordered 200 ball pit balls from and used an inflatable pool, added in a couple of bigger balls too :)


I was really hoping to turn a picnic table on its' end and do the photo collage posted above. Ran out of time and instead posted the photos on the 4 sides of the main post of the picnic pavilion.



My mom and I cut out lengths of ribbon and pinned them to a slim grey ribbon then sewed across the grey ribbon to hold everything together.

Friday, 17 January 2014

Pregnancy Photo Series

This link has 9 great ideas for pregnancy photo series.

I/we loosely based our photo series on #6:

I liked that the outfit and backdrop remained the same so you could really see the differences! So here is our pregnancy photo series!

Of course I was planning to take weekly photos... gave that up pretty quickly. And actually I was going to take another one the weekend after Everett was born (36 weeks). So I'm not at my most pregnant here.

Thankfully we were able to squeeze in our maternity photos the night before Everett was born! Here's one where I look my most pregnant:

Thursday, 9 January 2014

A Nursing Tale

A friend recently brought it to my attention that through the feeding experience with Everett, I learned a lot of precious information (and so did Andrew!).

I thought I would share much of it here, in hopes that it helps someone else! That being said, if you have a health practitioner you should ask their advice and follow that - this post should give you lots of things to ask them though :)

Our Schedule at the Beginning when Everett was in the NICU:
  • Nurse as soon as you can see the baby.
  • Go every three hours to feed the baby (or as often as the NICU nurses will let you).
    • Do a combination of attempting to nurse and bottle feeding.
      • Nurse for a few minutes, then bottle feed (or let partner), then pump for 15 minutes on a medium setting.
  • Drink a glass of water and have a snack every time you feed/pump.
Other tips for increasing supply:
  • Nurse more often (if that's humanly possible...)
  • Skin to skin
    • Also known as cuddle time :)
    • Helps promote milk production.
    • Helps baby to moderate their temperature (up or down).
    • Good for partner too!
  • Pump, pump, pump!
    • Have a picture of your baby nearby or visit the NICU and imagine your baby nursing while you pump, or if possible sit near your baby!
    • Make sure you have correctly sized phalanges.
    • Invest in a double electric pump, it saves time and makes it easier to actually pump when you don't want to.
    • This is my pump. (I love it).
      • Drink nursing tea
      • Sleep!
        • If your baby is taking a bottle/supplementation anyway, take one of the 12 feeds off a day and sleep/rest through it. This will help with supply as a well-rested body can make more milk!
      Don't be afraid to try other things:
      • Bottle feeding:
        • You may need to bottle feed while nursing is being established, don't feel bad about this!
        • Use a bottle that has a wide nipple to simulate the size/feeling of a breast. We used this kind.
        • Have someone help with the bottle feeding at the beginning as nursing and pumping is more than enough effort and you will need your rest.
        • Someone else will need to wash (and if using formula, sterlize) the bottles. This is something that should be delegated at the beginning.
        • Have baby sit up to eat out of bottle so that he is forced to draw the milk down the nipple and it isn't poured in (simulating real nursing I was told).

      • Crazy straw mechanism - Lact-aid
        • Didn't work well for us since Everett was annoyed by the straw's presence in his mouth and tried to spit it out.
        • Works amazingly for others!
      • Nipple shield
        • Apparently good for torn up nipples, also has other uses.
        • We used it to get Everett to sustain a latch on the breast as it would engage his sucking reflex much like a bottle.
        • Only warning we heard was to not use it exclusively if you're needing to increase your supply as the baby's direct latch works better for that.
        • Goal was to use for a few weeks only (for Everett to wean the baby off the bottle and onto the breast).
      • Hand expression
        • Not something that was particularly easy for me, especially when establishing a supply.
        • Here's a link to an explanation and how-to for hand expression and massage.
      • Massage
        • Worked well before pumping.
        • Helped with clogged ducts.
        • Brought milk down to make it easier for Everett to get milk sooner (at beginning).
      • Other Supplements:
        • Never used either, but work for lots of mamas!
          • Fenugreek
          • Blessed Thistle
      Great Resources:
      • La Leche League
      • Breastfeeding Buddies
      • Pre-birth Breastfeed Class
      • Health professional (lactation consultant, midwife, family doctor)

      Tuesday, 7 January 2014

      Great Food Over the Holidays!

      As usual we consumed amazing home-cooked meals! I can't begin to describe them all :)

      But I did want to add this soup recipe to the mix:

      We also had food from three family-run restaurants in Whitby over the holidays:

      Blue Sea Restaurant: Best fish 'n chips I've ever had. It's been my favourite since I was a kid and I've never had any elsewhere that competed with it. (We usually get the Halibut).

      Teriyaki House: All you can eat sushi at an amazing price. Super fresh too!

      Wolfgang's on Brock: Amazing German food! Huge portions and reasonable prices. Didn't feel awkward bringing the (sometimes noisy) baby.

      Friday, 3 January 2014

      Everett's Nursery: Embroideries

      So before Everett was born I had grand visions of what his woodland nursery would look like. Why I wanted something fancy but relatively inexpensive I don't know. Babies don't need coordinated prints and all that jazz.

      But, alas, he came early and the only thing in the nursery was the recently assembled crib. I think Andrew and my mom moved the nursing chair into the room while I was in the hospital along with the side table I wanted in there. I was also given parts to the woodland set from 3 Sprouts and 2 coordinating crib sheets for my shower.

      So 7 months later I'm finally getting around to the craft projects I wanted to do during the month of June. Eventually I will be putting everything together too!

      Here is the first:

      I knew I wanted a gallery wall. Everett's nursery will likely be the nicest, most thought out room in our house. The inspiration for the fox and skunk embroideries came when Andrew's mom offered us a choice of cross-stitches done by her mother (Andrew's Granni). I thought the blue jay would look awesome in Everett's room.

      I was looking for free printables of woodland animals that were modern cartoons but not too cutesy and came across a website (Daily Embroidery) that had one free embroidery each day as well as one for members. Members also get access to the archives. I enlisted my mom (who owns the machine) and convinced her this embroidery membership might be good for a short period of time (she could download all she wanted immediately).

      Finally we settled on the skunk:

      And the fox:

      We wrapped the fabric around foam core and took out the glass since we weren't using a mat. I bought the frames at Walmart for ~$10.

      I'm super happy with the finished product! I think my mom should go into business :P