new mom hair – Lilla Rose review and giveaway

ditch the claw

Hudson is a big time hair puller.  In fact, since he was four days old he’s been grabbing on to and yanking anything he could get his hands on (I learned the hard way and haven’t worn dangling earrings since he was four days old…).  Needless to say, my hairstyle of choice most of the time is up and out of his reach.

That gets pretty boring and usually means a lot of ponytails.  Lots and lots of ponytails.  They’re fast and easy…but not very exciting.  At home I was using a beat up old claw clip to flip my hair up in a twist (hello middle school!) but couldn’t bring myself to wear it out in public so when I went out I mostly stuck to ponytails.

Enter Lilla Rose.

I don’t remember when I first heard about the Lilla Rose Flexi Clip but it’s been quite a while, maybe even a few years ago.  I remember being intrigued but never pursued them any further; then a few months ago I stumbled across them again on Pinterest and really wanted to give them a try.  The Flexi Clip looked like a perfect, updated substitute for my beloved claw clip up do.  I got hooked up with Independent Consultant Linda Sears and she helped me determine what size would be best for me.  I ended up ordering one clip and then she sent me a second one to try so I could write this review and she is also sponsoring this giveaway for one of you lucky readers!  Yay!

I really wanted to be able to wear my hair all the way up and back, so based on the sizing video and Linda’s recommendations I ordered a medium.  There are so many beautiful designs and colors, but I wanted to start out with one that was simple and would match everything so I choose the Celtic knot pattern.

It was perfect!  I wear my hair in a french twist of sorts probably every other day now.  It’s almost as quick as flipping my hair up in a claw but looks much more polished!

And, bonus, it holds so well and is super comfortable.  There have been many days that I have put it up in the morning and basically forgotten about it.  I can go all day being pretty active and not have to re do my hair; in fact, I’ve even taken a Sunday afternoon nap and then gotten up to go to church again that night and not had to fix my hair since it still looked good!  Wow!  My head doesn’t get sore, either.  The Flexi Clip isn’t tight or put pressure on my head like bobby pins or barrettes do so I can leave it in all day and it doesn’t hurt.

lilla rose celtic knot french twistLilla Rose Flexi clip Gibson Tuck

Linda then sent me an extra small to try out so I could so some other hair styles.  The extra small is perfect for a loose half up, a tails up, or a pony tail.  When I first tried putting it on my pony tail I was nervous about how tight it was, but then I realized it needed to be that tight in order to keep the ponytail in place.  It ended up being exactly what I needed!

lilla rose Hawaiian flower half uplilla rose Hawaiian flower ponytaillilla rose Hawaiian flower braidLilla Rose Flexi clip tails up

I just can’t say enough good stuff about Lilla Rose.  I feel much more put together now that I have an alternative for my hair.  I’m able to get it away from Hudson’s grabby hands but not have to wear a boring old ponytail anymore.

Lilla Rose has other products besides just the Flexi Clip.  They have these You-Pins that I really want to try.  My other previous go-to hairstyle (besides the pony tail) was a bun.  My Flexi Clips aren’t big enough to hold my hair in a bun (and I think it would look kind of silly anyway), but the You-Pins look like they would be perfect for my buns so they’re on my wish list to purchase next.   I’m especially crushing on the Sparkling Star and the Open Flower!

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flower

They also have some beautiful headbands, hair sticks, and bobby pins.

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So….do you want one??  The good news is one of you will win a Flexi Clip of your very own!  Check out the Rafflecopter giveaway below to enter to win.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Didn’t win?  Don’t want to wait?  Ready to Christmas shop?  Think you’ll need more than one?  Then go ahead and purchase one (or more!).  Linda has a special for new customers – buy 3 get 1 free.  Grab a variety of sizes to try or buy several to use as stocking stuffers for the girls in your life.

Before you purchase, make sure you watch the sizing video so you know what size you need for your hair type and length.  It is super helpful!  If by chance you order the wrong size, Lilla Rose will gladly exchange your flexi for free within 90 days. There is also a one-year guarantee on defective items.

(Fine Print: Giveaway is open to US residents only.  This giveaway is sponsored by Independent Consultant Linda Sears.  I was sent a Flexi Clip in exchange for my review but all comments and opinions are mine.)

Hudson’s 7 month update

Whew, I’m way late on posting Hudson’s seven month update!  The hard drive on my computer was completely full and I couldn’t download all the pictures I took last month.  Michael installed a new, much bigger hard drive this weekend so now I’m good to go.

So, seven months.  Here’s what’s up with Mr. Hudson:

growth

We’re a month off on Hudson’s well baby check ups so we had one this month (rather than at 6 months).  Either they forgot to give us the little card with his stats on it or we left it laying in the exam room; either way, we don’t have his official height/weight, but I know that he weighed 20 pounds (and some ounces, but don’t remember how many) and was 27 inches long.  According to the snazzy charts they give you (which did somehow make it home with us), he is in the 32% for height, 81% for weight, and 72% for head circumference.  His pediatrician seemed pleased with everything and he had a good check up.

7 month dr comparison

food

Hudson had his first bites of food this month.  We are doing Baby Led Weaning, which is just a fancy term for skipping baby food and giving baby a variety of table food to choose from.  We really aren’t pushing food much since “food before one is just for fun”, but we have given him a few things to try.  The first thing he tried was steamed squash and he was not a fan – I think mostly the texture was weird to him.  He has also tried avocado, bananas, broccoli, carrots, and refried beans.  I gave him the refried beans when we were eating out at a Mexican restaurant and he loved them!  However they gave him bad gas so we’re holding off on more for now.  He doesn’t really eat much and basically just plays with his food, but that’s ok for now.  He likes playing with his spoons and forks so I give him those a lot since it keeps him occupied and I figure it’ll help him learn how to feed himself later.

Starting solids has definitely shocked his little digestive system.  He seems to have a bit of constipation after each time he eats solids, so we’ve been spacing it out and only trying something every few days.

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We also started giving him a sippy cup with a little water.  He loves to reach for anything we are drinking so we thought he might be ready for his own cup.  So far I don’t think he has gotten a single drop out of the cups (we’ve tried two different kinds: the Grow Up cup you see in the picture and also a Nuby cup with a straw) but he enjoys chewing on them and banging them on his high chair tray.  All in good time.

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So pretty much he is still exclusively breastfed with a few bites of table food every now and then.

sleep

This month has still been challenging sleep-wise.  We still try to put him to bed around 8pm and get up between 10 and 11 for a late night feeding before Michael and I go to bed.  Some nights he will then sleep through the night (although he is waking up really early) and others he will wake up around 3 or 4 to eat again.

He has gotten in a bad routine of waking up for good between 5 and 6am, which is no fun.  I am so fortunate because Michael almost always gets up with Hudson if he wakes up that early and lets me sleep until he has to leave for work at 7:00.  I know he enjoys getting to spend a little time with Hudson before he leaves for work, but I also know it’s no fun to get up early so we’ll be happy when Hudson starts sleeping later again!

Some mornings he’ll put Hudson in the co-sleeper while he gets ready for work and it’s so funny because Hudson just sits there and stares at me, waiting for me to wake up.  Other mornings he puts Hudson in bed with me and he’ll lay there and smack me and pull on my hair.  What can I say, the boy loves his mama :).

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Hudson is still sleeping in his co-sleeper at night.  Or rather, he starts out the night in his co-sleeper.  If he sleeps all night then he stays in there; if he wakes up to eat in the middle of the night then I put him in bed with us to feed him and he usually sleeps the rest of the night with us.

Nap time is definitely a challenge.  Most of the time he wakes up in about 10 minutes after I lay him down for a nap.  Some days I’ll keep rocking him and putting him down, other days I just say “forget it” and let him get up.  Lots of times I wear him during the day for at least one “wrap nap” because if he is snuggled up next to me he’ll actually sleep for an hour or more.  Wearing him allows my hands to be free to I can read, type, etc.

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Most nights he goes to bed very easily at his normal 8ish bedtime, but this one night he was WIDE awake and laid there playing in his bed for forever.  Michael was in the bedroom trying to pat his back and get him to sleep and he texted me this picture of Hudson trying to look under the mattress instead of sleep.  What a silly goose.  Also, do you see that tag in the background on his bed?  He would sit and pick and pull at the tag when he woke up from a nap or if he was trying not to go to sleep.  Michael finally got fed up and tore it off so he couldn’t mess with it anymore.

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napping with his cute little booty in the airIMG_6022

mobility

Hudson still isn’t crawling or scooting, but he is a champion roller.  He can move himself all over the place and I have to keep a close eye on him!  He loves to try to get my phone, computer, phone charger, shoes, and paper…he’ll bypass all his toys to get to the things he shouldn’t have.

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other firsts

Hudson got his first sunburn(s) this month *Mommy hangs head in shame*.  The first one he got at Jackson’s Orchard during our weekly playdate.  We were in the shade most of the day and I just didn’t think about it.  I had used our homeade bug spray/sunscreen on his arms and legs to protect him from bugs so the added sunscreen kept his limbs from burning, but since I didn’t think to put any on his face and he got scorched.  I felt terrible!

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Then a week or so later he got another sunburn!  It wasn’t as bad but still, I felt terrible.

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Hudson got his first black eye this month.  He was playing on his activity gym play mat thingy and he whacked himself in the eye with one of the toys that’s attached to the mat.  I know this is probably the first of many, but I still felt awful.  It didn’t really phase him though!IMG_5640Hudson wore his first suit this month.  It was so, so adorable!  Check out that tie and pocket square.  A baby in a suit is just precious.  We did’t have any black shoes or socks so he just went barefoot :).

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We hung his jumper in the door way of the dining room/play room.  It’s kind of iffy…sometimes he’ll play in there for 20 minutes or so while I’m cooking, but most of the time he will only tolerate it for a minute or two before he wants out.  I think once he figures out the actual jumping part he will like it better.
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We started putting him in a high chair when we eat out.  This was his very first time in a restaurant high chair and he was still not very good at sitting up so I used my wrap to tie him in and help keep him upright.  Now he’s much better at that and can sit in the high chair unsupported.  IMG_5800

new skills

Sitting up!  Hudson started sitting up just in time for his 6 month pictures.  The improvement in his sitting over the course of this month has been so cool to watch.  He started out at the beginning of the month needing to be positioned just so and I had to stay right next to him to catch him when he (inevitably) toppled over.  By the end of the month he was sitting up on his own for long periods of time.  He still falls over some, but often he’ll catch his balance and fix himself if he starts to fall.

(side note: look at those adorably chubby knees!!  squee!)

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adventures

I started back to running (or rather, slow shuffling) consistently (2-3 times a week).  Hudson goes along with me of course and he’s a great running buddy.  He usually just sits and looks around, occasionally he’ll fall asleep.  Sometimes he will start to get fussy the last few minutes of the run but overall he does great.

The rough part is when we get back.  I am dripping with sweat and need to take a shower before I do anything else but by that point he is pretty tapped out and wants to be held.  If he’s in a semi-calm state then I’ll roll him in the bathroom and leave him in his stroller with some toys while I shower.  If he’s already pretty upset then I’ll make a pallet with some toys on the floor in the bathroom and set him there.  Either way he usually ends up crying through my whole shower.  It’s less than relaxing but it’s worth it to get some exercise and a shower.

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I also tried to do baby wearing yoga several times this month, but each time resulted in one very upset baby (I’m usually walking or bouncing when I wear him and I don’t think he liked being so still while I held the yoga poses).  So that was kind of a bust for now and I was disappointed because I was very excited about yoga!

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We’ve been going to story time on weeks that our playdate doesn’t conflict.  They have lots of toys at the library that the kids play with after story time and it’s a good way to see what things he likes.  He enjoyed playing with this piano so when I went to a big local consignment sale I bought him one to play with at home.

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Napping with Daddy

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Michael preached one Sunday at this tiny congregation in our area that some of the men in our church help with occasionally.  Hudson and I went with him; it was challenging (no place to take Hudson if he was fussy or hungry because the church just has one room) but Hudson did better than I expected and I’m glad we got to go.
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My brother brought these little sandals back from Central America last year when we went there on a mission trip right after we announced we were pregnant.  I was so excited that Hudson was finally big enough to wear them!  
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We tried to take some pictures of him after church but he was not having it.  Check out that huge pouty lip!  He does that a lot and it’s so sad but also cute and hilarious!

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other stuff

Keeping Michael awake while he tried to nap one Sunday afternoon.

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His friend Lilah still just loves him!  She was “holding him” in her lap at church one night (never mind that he’s nearly as big as she is!).  If he leaned forward she would put her arms around his waist and yank him back because she didn’t want him to crawl away.  It cracks me up how she’s only 10 months older but thinks he’s a baby and she’s so big.  I’m so thankful we have lots of kids Hudson’s age at church and that he will grow up with lots of friends.IMG_5880

I love rocking Hudson to sleep.   I know they say you shouldn’t nurse or rock to sleep…but y’all know how I feel about most of the things that “they” say to do.  I love it and I think it’s a special time that we have together and it won’t last long so I’m enjoying it while I can.IMG_5865

Hudson is so full of personality!  He’s happy (usually) and funny and expressive and dramatic (don’t know who he got that from *ahem*).  IMG_5537IMG_5539IMG_5540IMG_5672IMG_5708IMG_5725IMG_5765IMG_5833

Sometimes he does this and it’s quite sad.  Poor pitiful pearl…you can tell that no one ever holds him or plays with him (huge sarcasm sign there people).  Woe unto the one who decides to set him down so they can get dressed…or clean…or cook…or anything else.  Yep, much of my day consists of tending to him and I get very little else done, but that’s ok.  I wouldn’t trade if for the world.

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Here’s our 7 month comparison collage.  It’s crazy to see how much he has changed!7 month comparisonI love you my sweet, precious, big, growing boy!

cloth diapering 101

cloth diapering 101

After cloth diapering for five months I am by no means an expert and this is definitely not a comprehensive course on cloth diapering (hence the 101), but people ask about Hudson’s diapers pretty frequently so I thought I’d give an overview for you curious folks.

(for the sake of brevity, I’ll use cd or cd’ing for cloth diaper/cloth diapering sometimes, m’kay?)

What we’ll cover (aka class syllabus):

Why cloth?
What are the different types?
How much does this cost?
How many do I need?
Eeww poop…how do I wash them?

Let’s get started!  Pencils ready, class?

Why cloth?

So many people, especially from the older generation, cannot seem to fathom why you would choose to cloth diaper over using disposables.  Part of this, I think, is because the cloth diapers of old were much less convenient than our options now (which you’ll see later).  But here are some reasons why you might want to use cloth.

– For some, the environment is a huge factor.  I’ll be honest, this was not why I wanted to cd.  Sure, I try to reduce, reuse, recycle, and all that jazz and I’m glad I’m not contributing tons more trash via disposables, but it really wasn’t the main reason that I decided to use cloth.  But I know many people are very passionate about that and that’s why they cd.

– The main reason I decided to use cloth diapers was to save money.  Have you seen the cost of disposable?  Yikes.  We decided to use disposables for the first few months until we got used to the whole new baby thing and I was mucho surprised at how much we were spending on diapers.  We didn’t have any newborn disposables before he was born so we had to go out and buy a bunch of those…whoa nelly.

– Less chemicals.  I know there are some babies with sensitive skin and the chemicals of disposables diapers irritate their sweet little bums.  Cloth is a good alternative that isn’t chock full of icky chemicals.

I really can’t think of any other biggies – anyone want to weigh in here?  I think mostly it’s an environmental or cost thing, but if you have another reason, please share!

(pssst….you don’t have to be a crunchy hippie to cloth diaper!)

BumGenius AlbertHudson when we first started cloth diapering (2 and 1/2 months old)

What are the different types?

There are several options for cloth diapering (hint: none of them use pins…I mean, I suppose you could but I don’t think anyone really does that anymore).  I’m not going to go into detail about all of them because I don’t want to overwhelm you (this is a 101 class after all), so I’m just going to share the three types that I have and that I think are typically the most “mainstream”.

1. Pockets – There are probably the most popular kind.  You have a diaper that usually is made out of a waterproofing fabric (PUL) that keeps it from leaking on the outside and  on the inside a fabric that wicks the liquid away from the baby.  They use snaps or velcro to fasten.  There is a pocket in the diaper where you slide an insert, a piece of fabric that absorbs the liquid – microfiber, hemp, cotton, and bamboo are all widely used materials for inserts.

Pros: easy to find since they are so popular, you can use whatever inserts you prefer, you can add more inserts if you need more absorbency, very similar to disposable diapers when it comes to putting in on baby
Cons: removing the inserts to wash and then stuffing after they are clean take an extra step

cloth diapering 101 BumGenius pocketsBumGenius pocketsAn example of a pocket diaper – a BumGenius 4.0.  The insert slides all the way into the pocket, you don’t leave it hanging out the way I have it in this picture, but I just wanted to show you how it goes in

2. All in Ones – Also known as an AIO, these diapers are made just like they sound…all in one.  The insert part (that absorbs the liquid) is sewn in to the diaper so there is no stuffing or removing inserts from pockets.

Pros: no stuffing/removing inserts; all one piece so less intimidating for those who have never used cloth, also very similar to disposables
Cons: most are made with microfiber inserts so if you don’t like microfiber (which many don’t) you are stuck with it; can take longer to dry

cloth diapering 101 - all in ones unfoldedcloth diapering 101 - all in onesTwo examples of All-in-Ones, a BumGenius Freetime on the left and a Thirsties one size AIO on the right.  You can see that the BG inserts attach at the front and back but the Thirsties is sewn in on the sides.

3.  Pre-folds or flats and covers:  With this diaper system you use covers that are made of PUL and then some sort of insert that is folded into a rectangle and laid into the diaper.  Essentially, a pocket diaper without the pocket.  The ones I have include a rectangular insert that lays in the diaper and is already the right size, but many people use “traditional” cloth diapers (think: burp cloths) and fold them to fit.  Usually the cover can be used for several diaper changes, just changing out the cloth insert.

Pros: Less bulky to take with you on the go because you can reuse covers and only have to carry inserts, typically cheaper
Cons: Can be more time-consuming if you have to fold the cloth

cloth diapering 101 Flip diapersFlip diapersA Flip cover and insert

This is very, very rudimentary.  There are several other types but these are the three that like I said, I use and have experience with, and I think are the most widely used types of diapers.

All of the diapers that I use are one size.  They have snaps that can be adjusted as Hudson grows.  Typically these can be used pretty soon after birth (they may be a little big right at first) all the way up to potty training, just adjusting the size as you go.  There are also sized diapers that will work for a time but then once baby gets too big you have to move up and buy more in a larger size.

BumGenius rise optionsThree BumGenius 4.0s (pockets) showing small, medium, and large

Of the three types of diapers we have, the covers are my least favorite.  I’m not really sure why, I just don’t prefer those as much.  I only have two covers, so I keep them in the car with a few inserts and they are my back-up diapers just in case something happens when we are out and I’ve forgotten to pack enough diapers.  Some people love, love, love covers though, so it’s definitely personal preference.

I started out with all pockets, then added some AIOs to my collection.  I like them both equally and they have pros and cons (as I listed above).   Time will tell which one (if any) I like the best.

different rise snapsWe mostly use BumGenius diapers, but have a few other brands so I put them side by side to show some differences.  The BumGenius (blue) has three rise settings, the Rumparooz (green) has four, and the Fuzzibunz (orange) doesn’t have any rise snaps but instead has a button on the inside the adjusts the elastic.

Here’s a good post that goes into more details about the different types of cloth diapers.

How much does this cost?

The cost can vary widely depending on how you purchase and what you buy.

If you just want to buy your diapers all in one swoop and get it over with you can buy a starter pack of 24 BumGenius diapers for about $400 (24 is a pretty average “stash” that’ll have you washing every two-ish days).

If you don’t have a bunch to spend but really want to cloth diaper, I think you could easily find a stash for around $100.  A very cheap and quite popular option for inserts/flats are flour sack towels.  They are thin but very absorbent squares of fabric that you can find at Walmart in the kitchen hand towel section.  I think you can get a pack of 5 for $5.  Using those inside some covers would be a very budget-friendly option.  Here is a great post from Kelly’s Closet (my go to for all things cloth diaper related) about buying diapers on a budget)

I bought almost all of my diapers used (or “pre-loved” as some like to say…sounds better than “used” I suppose).  I have 25 diapers and have spent about $200.  Before Hudson was born and I was buying diapers I thought that was so much money, but after seeing how much we were spending on disposables at first I realized we would have burned through$200 worth of disposables super fast anyway!

You do have an added detergent cost, which I haven’t figured up.  We use homemade detergent for our clothes but you can’t use homemade for cloth diapers so I have to purchase detergent (I like Tide).  As far as water goes, we have not seen a significant increase in our water bill (we do have a High Efficiency washer and some sort of special heat pump that Michael tried to explain and I didn’t really understand…but regardless, there may be some people who see more of an increase in cost just based on how your washer uses water).

How many do I need?

I covered this already, but I think 24 is a really good number to shoot for.  That should be enough to wash every other day once they get past the newborn stage (they go through a lot more diapers at first!).

cloth diaper stash shotHere’s a “stash shot” of my diapers.  Four of these don’t get used (one is a sized diaper that Hudson has grown up of, two are Flip covers that I keep in the car for backups, and one is a Fuzzibunz that is too big still) so in all I have 22 that we use regularly.  Some of the colors are my favorites and I’d love some more fun prints, but almost all of these were bought used at a very good price so I can’t really complain about the colors!

Eeww poop…how do I wash them?

Ok, this depends on what your kiddo is eating.  If your baby is exclusively breastfed then this is super easy.  Breastfed poop is water soluble, so you don’t have to spray them off or anything…you just toss it in the washer and that does the trick!  If your baby is on formula or once you’ve started solids then you’ll have to do a little more work – most people get a diaper sprayer that attaches to the toilet so they can spray the poop off before washing or you can dunk the diaper in the toilet to rinse it off.  If you’re baby’s poop is more solid and will just fall off into the toilet then you can just plop it in there.

So my routine.  After I change Hudson’s diaper I pull out the insert (if I’m using a pocket diaper) and toss both parts in a wet bag (if he has eaten something recently besides breastmilk recently and there are chunks in his poop then I spray it off).  On wash day I dump all the diapers and the wet bag into my washing machine (I have a top loading HE washer).  I do one cold rinse, then a heavy duty hot was cycle with an extra rinse.

After they are washed, I like to hang mine to dry.  You do not have to do that, but I like to if I have the time.  The sun bleaches out any stains so I try to set them out on my porch to dry.  If I’m in a rush, though, I’ll toss them in the dryer and dry on low or medium.

Washing diapers is very specific to your washer, your water (soft or hard), the detergent you use, etc.  There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution.  I highly recommend this Facebook group if you need help figuring out how to wash your diapers.

Just Simply Baby bee diaper

Additional resources:

Again, this post was very rudimentary.  This was meant as a brief overview of diapers and to maybe pique your interest about learning more.  If you decide you want to know more or are ready to dive in and get started there is more to it than just this, of course.  Thankfully we have the internet at our fingertips!

There is a TON of information on Pinterest!  If you go to Pinterest and search “cloth diapers” you will find so much to help you learn more.  I read many, many blog posts on Pinterest about cd’s while I was pregnant with Hudson and that helped so much.

Here are some Facebook groups I like

Cloth Diaper Support
I <3 cloth diapers
Fluff Love & CD Science (that’s the cloth diaper washing group I mentioned)

Also, if you know anyone in person who cloth diapers ask them to let you look at theirs (trust me, people who cloth diaper LOVE to show them off and educate others about them so she won’t mind!).  I have a friend who showed me several of hers so I could look at the different types, which was very helpful.

cloth diapers

Final Thoughts:

I love cloth diapering!  We don’t use them 100% of the time.  We use a disposable overnight and occasionally during the day if the diapers are in the wash or when we’re traveling out of town for more than a few days.  But when we do use disposables I miss my cloth!

My best advice: just buy some and try them out.  If you aren’t sure what you want then get a variety.  Cloth diapers resell really well so you won’t be out a lot of money if you decide to sell them.  In fact, if you buy used you can usually make back what you originally spent.

I asked Michael to read through this post before I hit Publish in order to see if I left anything out that was crucial to a beginner.  He typed up some of his comments and I thought it would be great to hear a his perspective

“I love saving money so I was on board. But actually using them takes some figuring out.  A question I had at first was how tight should I make them? I don’t want to cut off his circulation, but I definitely don’t want poop to come flying out around his legs either (I later learned sometimes poop explosions are unavoidable regardless of the type/design diaper).

Caitlin’s note: There are lots of YouTube videos that show you how to use a cloth diaper; this is the one that I used and I think it’s very helpful.

My advice is once you find a diaper you like, sell all the other kinds you tried and buy more of the preferred type. Its easier to remember where the snaps go if they are all the same type. When you start mixing brands and types the snaps are in different places and you’re thinking “on the red diaper go in 1 snap, on the orange diaper go in 2 snaps, on the blue diaper go in 3 snaps… wait this diaper has hip snaps too! I can’t remember!”

The diaper sprayer is an easy install at the toilet. You’ll need a flexible supply line, which you can get at local hardware store for about $6.99. Price will vary with length. Be sure and turn the spray water valve off and relieve the pressure from the sprayer after every use. Otherwise you are inviting flooding and an unplanned major remodel.”

Thanks, Michael for a daddy’s perspective!!

I hope this was helpful!  Let me know if you have questions.

the dining room “after”…and a playroom “before”

Oh hi there.  Remember when we moved into our house?  That was…um…October of 2012.  And how many completed rooms have I shown you since then?  That would be two: the master bathroom and Hudson’s nursery.

Let’s just say I have a lot of unfinished rooms.  But guess what?  Here’s another completed room…sort of.

Let’s check out the dining room.  When we moved in our whole entire house was painted this drab builder beige.  We threw the furniture in there and called it good for a while.

dining room before

Then Michael and his dad painted it a beautiful, happy apple green color and we did a little decorating.

Here’s the dining room looking in from the kitchen (I really wish I had a wide angle lens when I try to take pictures of room decor!)

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There’s my trusty white china cabinet that has travelled with us from house to house.
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The quilt is an old one that belonged to one of my relatives (grandmother? great grandmother?) that my mom now has and she’s letting us borrow it for now since it matches so nicely.  We just used a large curtain rod to hang it on.
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Some of my pretty aprons on an old rake

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I love this hutch.  It’s so pretty and rustic and it serves as the perfect place for us to store (and display) the food we canned and some of our serving pieces that we can’t fit in the kitchen.

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The rolled up quilts are also some of my mom’s and the white high chair I found at Goodwill.

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One of my favorite pieces of decor – the fence.  (you can read its story here)
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So, about that furniture set.  Don’t you love it?  Me too!  It’s actually my mom’s.  Prior to moving into this house we’d never had a dining room so we didn’t have any furniture to put in here.  My mom needed a place to store hers so rather than paying to put it in storage she “stored” it at our house – we got dining room furniture, she got storage, everyone wins.

Well she no longer needs us to store the furniture set, so sadly we had to give it back a few weeks ago.

And that’s why this is actually a before picture.

empty dining room

Rather than purchase a new dining room set to take up the whole room and get used maybe once a month, we’re converting this into A PLAYROOM!  The location is perfect – it’s right off the kitchen so I’ll be able to keep and eye on Hudson while I cook and (hopefully) it will give him a place to play so he can be near me but not right underfoot in the kitchen.

Right now we don’t really have a plan.  I’m thinking we’ll put a rug down, some storage for toys, a small table or desk for me to do work in there while he plays (make it a hybrid playroom/office), and maybe a cabinet of some sort to store kitchen items (we had quite a few that were stored in the dining room that we need to find a home for).  If we homeschool it will be the perfect space for that, too.

I’m so excited about this!  At first I was apprehensive about getting rid of the dining room, but when I thought about how little we used it and how much better it would be to have a place for Hudson to play, the idea grew on me.  Plus we have a large folding table and chairs that we can put up when people come over if we need extra seating.

So stay tuned (someday) for a playroom reveal!

 

Hudson’s 6 month pictures

Oh y’all.  Hang on to your hat because these pictures will melt you into a puddle.  Every time we get pictures made I don’t think they can get any better…and then they do.

Hudson did so great for these pictures.  When we did his newborn pictures he didn’t want to cooperate and go to sleep.  At his three month pictures it was like pulling teeth to get a smile out of him.  But at his six month pictures he was super smily and happy and cooperative.  It was the best picture taking experience yet and we were well rewarded with some absolutely adorable ones!

Please hold as I become “that” mom who posts a hundred pictures of her baby in identical poses with just a slight change in expression.

(I totally understand now, it’s too hard to choose because they’re all adorable when it’s your own child)

(I promise this is still less than half of the pictures)

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Fun fact: this was only the second time Hudson had ever sat up on his own.  I had gotten him to sit up very briefly the day before so we decided to try it for his pictures and I’m so glad we did because he did really well (with a lot of propping and steadying from mommy) and the pictures turned out fantastic!

It’s funny because when we did his three month pictures he wasn’t even holding his head up well enough to do any on his tummy, and now not only did we get great tummy shots we also got him sitting up!
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Sigh.  I love this one with Michael’s boots and a Carhartt diaper cover

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(P.S. Carhartt needs to get their baby sizing together…this diaper cover says 0-3 month but is still to big and he’s in 9 month clothes yet the Carhartt onesie we have that says 9 month is like Spandex on him.  Come on now.)IMG_0727_2IMG_0734

This one cracks me up, he’s giving his classic “sly-brow”IMG_0746IMG_0749IMG_0761IMG_0766IMG_0789BWIMG_0817IMG_0826IMG_0848IMG_0857

Check out those baby blues!  I die.

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Finger dimples!!IMG_0869BWIMG_0873IMG_0882

As always, thanks to Shelley at Sweet Dreams Photography for these fantastic pictures!

essential oils for the classroom

essential oils for the classroom

It’s back to school time and while I’m not actually going back to school (this is the first time in 22 years that I haven’t had a “first day of school” either as a student or a teacher…so weird!) I know I have a lot of teachers who read my blog so I thought I’d share how I’d be using oils at school if I were still teaching.

I didn’t start using essential oils until a week before I went into labor so I haven’t gotten to try them out in a school setting.  I SO wish I had though!  I always (well, until I got pregnant and couldn’t stand most smells) had a Scentsy warmer running in my classroom/library.  I loved making it smell nice and I think it felt more homey.  I would have loved to use my diffuser so that it would have been beneficial and more than just an enjoyable scent.

If I were going to be diffusing oils in my classroom, these are the ones I would use.

In the morning: Joy and peppermint to get us woken up and in a happy mood (that’s my favorite combo when I’m cranky or need some pep in my step) or Valor for motivation.

After gym class: Purification to combat that sweaty kid smell.  Shew.  That is not a pleasant aroma, y’all.  I wish I could say that’s limited to middle school but this is not the case.

After a kid throws up (What?  It’s a totally legit and unfortunately frequent issue when you teach elementary school!): Thieves is a germ fighting powerhouse!  I’d use this one regularly, especially if I have a student I know is sick or a bug is going around, and I would be diffusing daily during cold and flu season.  Much easier (and better for you) than trying to Lysol everything in your classroom (or wipe down every book that gets checked in to the library…not that I’ve attempted to do anything crazy like that…ahem).

During a test: Peppermint and lemon have been shown to improve cognitive function.  So cool!  I’d for sure be diffusing those a lot, especially during tests, to try to help my students do their best!  (can you see why I totally wish I’d had oils earlier?!?).  Plus they are both very uplifting oils.

During that wild, hour-before-school-is-out time:  Lavender, Peace & Calming, or Stress Away are all good choices to help calm the afternoon crazies and keep the kiddos from bouncing off the walls.

So, who’s ready for a great school year?  What oil would you like to use most in your classroom?

Ready to kick of the school year with oils?  Go here.  Want to read more about my classroom?  Check out my classroom organization series.

Who does he look like?

One of the most popular topics people like to discuss is who does baby look most like?  I’d say 95% of the time people say that Hudson looks just like Michael.  I dug up some old baby pictures and did some comparisons so you can decide for yourself.

IMG_5171Hudson on the left, Michael on the right – both about 4 months old

IMG_5170Hudson on the left, me on the right

What do you think?  Does Hudson look like me or Michael?  Vote below:

No matter who you think he looks most like, there is NO denying that he got his pouty lip from me…

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Hudson left, me right

Hudson is 6 months old

Time, seriously.  Slow down!  There is NO WAY that it’s been half a year since Hudson was born.  No no no!

It just goes so fast.  I want him to still be a teeny tiny baby and I miss things that he used to do, and yet this age is so fun too!

Sigh.

I guess I’ll just have to have a million babies.

Anyway…moving on.

Hudson started off this month with a bang!  When I wrote last month’s post he was still sleeping in his Rock ‘N Play while swaddled up.  I knew we needed to start transitioning out of the swaddle (he was busting out of it during each nap) and out of the Rock ‘N Play (which he was getting too big for).  I was very, very nervous about this.  I just knew he wouldn’t be able to sleep with the swaddle, and going from the snuggly incline of the Rock ‘N Play to the flat open space of a crib seemed so daunting.  I was mentally preparing myself for a slow transition over several weeks and figured I’d need to block off several days to do nothing but help him get back to sleep each time he woke himself up.

Well.

The day he turned five months old I rocked him to sleep as normal and on a whim decided to try laying him down unswaddled in his cosleeper (which is basically a crib that attaches to the side of our bed).  He woke up as soon as I laid him down but wasn’t crying so I left him there for a few minutes to run upstairs and switch some laundry over.  When I came back down I went in the bedroom to to check on him.

He has turned over on his belly and fallen asleep on his own.  He never falls asleep on his own.  Like, maybe five times in his whole little life.

And he slept for three (THREE!) hours, unswaddled, on his belly, in the cosleeper.

So much for a long, difficult transition!

From that point on he took all his naps like that.  We still swaddled and used the Rock ‘N Play for a few nights, but after a few days of seeing how well he did with his naps we switched over completely to the cosleeper for nights too.  He has done great.

The only weird thing is that about half of the time when he wakes up he starts crying immediately.  He never did that in the Rock ‘N Play so I don’t know if that’s related to the cosleeper, or being on his tummy, or what, but since it started at the exact same time we made the switch it seems like it might be.

Oh and that dark mullet left over from his birth hair you see there is gone now.  That was the last little bit of the dark hair he was born with and now he’s just blonde.

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Hudson had his first sick baby visit this month.  There was a little blood in his stool one morning so I called his pediatrician to see if that was something to be worried about.  She had us come in and they ran some tests but everything checked out fine so we’re not quite sure what happened.  He’s been fine ever since though!
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Giving what one little girl at church camp dubbed “the sly-brow”
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Some friends of ours got married in west Kentucky, so we went to their wedding and spent the weekend with my grandparents who live in that area.
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While we were in Mayfield we took Hudson swimming at my aunt and uncle’s pool.  He was not super thrilled with the water but he did like it when Michael swam him around on the boogie board.
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He was so good at the wedding!
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Hudson sleeps in his bed during the night but most mornings when he wakes up for his first feeding I feed him and then he (sometimes) goes back to sleep in bed with us for a little bit longer.

We’ve had a bit of a sleep regression this month.  Most nights he still sleeps through the night but there were quite a few where he woke up several times during the night.  That has been frustrating since he’d been sleeping so great.
IMG_5094I love getting sweet snuggles in the morning!

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Sleeping in the car – a rare sight (this was on the way home from Mayfield, I think he was totally worn out).  He doesn’t scream and cry every time he’s in the car, but I’d say he still does about 50% of the time.  Not fun, but at least it’s progress.
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Wearing Hudson on my back has made life SO much easier!  I’m able to cook and clean and get things done around the house without having to constantly entertain him.  He will ride back there so quietly forever, just watching the world around him.  
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I love wearing my boy.  It’s nice to be able to hold him and yet still have my hands free, plus I think he enjoys being able to see things from up high rather than on the ground.

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Some of the young moms at church have started a weekly play date.  We have so much fun!  Hudson got to swing for the first time and loved it.
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Michael came with me to the dentist to hold Hudson while I got my teeth cleaned.  Hudson did pretty well for a while but started to get fussy and wouldn’t calm down unless he was with Mommy, so I held him on my stomach while they finished my cleaning.  He watched so intently!
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Hudson started wearing an amber teething necklace.  This isn’t for him to chew on (common misconception) but supposedly the amber has natural pain-relieving properties.  Many moms swear by them for their teething babies, and while I’m skeptical I figure it can’t hurt to try.  He doesn’t seem to be teething hardcore yet but he drools and chews on things so I went ahead and put the necklace on preemptively.  I thought it looked a little weird at first but now I’m used to it.
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Hudson loves church.  He’s usually pretty good during worship (although now that he is babbling he can get pretty loud!) and he really enjoys the nursery class.  I started teaching his class on Wednesday night and it is so fun to watch him as we sing and learn.  
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Lilah loves Hudson and even though she’s not even a year older than him she wants to “help” take care of him.  This particular day she was holding tight to Hudson’s hand!
IMG_5358Nolan, John Luke, and Hudson were born within a span of two months (Nolan is the oldest, Hudson is the youngest).  It will be so fun to see them grow up together!

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This little man is so incredibly happy.  Sure, he has his cranky moments, but overall he’s just a joy to be around!  He learned how to splash his legs in the bathtub and now he thinks baths are so super fun.
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Future bookworm!

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Michael is so good with Hudson!  Hudson laughed for the first time this month and it was in response to his Daddy being silly with him.  So sweet!

Another first we had this month was that I went out by myself for a while (prior to this I had only left Hudson twice, and both times were to run a very quick errand)..  We had several extremely fussy days and one Saturday I just reached a point where I badly needed a break from the crying and refusing to nap.  I’m usually pretty patient but I was in tears because I was so frustrated, so Michael stayed home with Hudson and I got out of the house for a bit.  I got a relaxing pedicure and enjoyed a chocolate chip cookie (or two) from Chick Fil A (they have the best cookies!).  It was so nice to have a few hours to myself and take a break.  When I got home Michael had also cleaned the shower for me – what an awesome husband!

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I needed to do some shopping to get ready for church camp and it included trying on clothes – not easy with a baby.  So Michael came with me to help and he wore Hudson in the Ergo around Walmart while I shopped.  IMG_5349
I’ve mentioned it several times already, but the biggest thing we did this month was go to church camp for a week.  We didn’t spend the night; the camp is only 45 minutes from our house and I figured the drive each day was worth it to be able to shower/bathe at home and get to stay on our sleep routine.  But we went every day and Hudson did fantastic!  He watched everything and everyone and seemed to enjoy all the activity (except for when I tried to put him in the cold pool).  Of course he had lots of people to play with and hold him so that was nice.

We were very fortunate to have great weather so I didn’t have to worry at all about him getting too hot.  Plus, I set up Hudson’s pack n play and a bed for me in an air conditioned cabin so we had a place to rest in the afternoons.  I wore him most of the day and he just rode around in the carrier either napping or watching the things around him.  
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I snagged one of the extra camp shirts for Hudson but the smallest they had was an adult small…quite a bit too big for him!  It will be so fun to watch him grow into the shirt through the years.
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We got to visit these precious boys, Grady and Thatcher.  I thought Hudson seemed so small until we put him up next to the boys (who are two months old); compared to them he seems like a giant!  It’s crazy to me that when I first started blogging their big sister Nora hadn’t even been born yet – her baby shower was one of my early blog posts!

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Hudson isn’t crawling but he is absolutely mobile!  He rolls and scoots himself all over the place.  I laid him down on his playmat while I was doing some sewing; I kept hearing a dull thud and looked up to realize that he had somehow gotten off his mat and was hitting the plastic bins.  We’re having to keep a much more careful eye on him now!

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He just melts my heart.  I am so blessed to be Hudson’s mommy.  It is absolutely the best job in the world and I love it!
IMG_54696 month stats: Hudson weighs 18 pounds, 6 ounces and is 27 inches long.

6 month comparison

Hudson’s five month update

It amazes me how fast the months go and how much Hudson changes from month to month.  I feel like I blink and it’s time to write another update post, but then when I go back and look through my pictures and the notes I make through the month I realize just how much stuff has happened in that month!

First up, some stats: We had (what should have been) his four month well baby visit yesterday (that somehow got pushed out to five months).  He weighed 16 pounds 4 ounces (44%) and was 25.5 inches long (30%).  Healthy boy!

We started making it a point to recreate a picture from our first doctors visit to compare.  Look how much he has grown!

dr visit comparison

After we switched from an infant car seat to a convertible car seat last month I started putting Hudson in his stroller without using the infant seat.  He did really well – the seat reclines enough that I don’t worry about his head bobbling around.  He likes the stroller much more now because he isn’t strapped into the carseat.  I went shuffling jogging for the first time in close to a year.
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Hudson and I took a solo trip back “home” to Springfield (where Michael and I grew up).  It’s just an hour drive but that was the longest I’d driven alone with Hudson.  We met up with some friends and went for a walk – look at this gorgeous view!  Hudson did great and slept in his stroller for most of the walk.
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Hudson started trying to roll over at the beginning of the month so we moved his little changing station off the ottoman and into the floor so that I didn’t have to worry about him rolling off.  That turned out to be really nice because now I can lay him down and walk away if I need to.

He loves it when Daddy gets home from own and gets down in the floor to play.

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There are no visible teeth yet, but he is definitely teething – chewing on everything he can get in his mouth and drooling some.
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Hudson went through a phase this month (that already seems to be over) of tucking his lower lip under his top lip.  It was so cute and made him look like a little turtle.IMG_4707 IMG_4712
He seems to like his class at church – he sits and listens and watches so intently.
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Last year the Gaines’ gave out t-shirts if you made a donation to the Tanzanian Missions fund.  We made one for Hudson and got him this adorable little onesie with the t-shirt logo on it (Michael and I have matching ones too and I just realized that I should get a picture of the three of us in our shirts).
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Our swaddling days are quickly coming to an end.  Hudson has gotten to where he busts at least one arm, if not both, out of his swaddle during every nap.  This tells me it is time to move away from the swaddle so we’re working on that.

We also started spreading out his naps and feedings.  He was getting to where he fought me at every nap because he wasn’t tired enough yet, so we I started spacing them out more and keeping him up longer in between naps and that has helped a lot.
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He is still just so very happy most of the time.  Other than the carseat (which, unfortunately, he still hates) he’s a pretty content baby.
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He sits around with his feet crossed all the time.  It makes him look so chill and laid back and it just cracks me up!
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I think all of Hudson’s clothes are adorable, but I’m a sucker for these short overalls in particular.  So, so precious!
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I put the tray on his high chair one day so that he could use it to play with his toys (read: I was tired of picking them up every time he dropped them so I though the tray might catch them before they hit the ground).  He looks so big in his chair!

Side note: that chair is great!  It’s a Fisher Price Space Saver and it straps on a regular kitchen chair.  Not only do we not have to have a big high chair in the way, it is also very portable so we can easily take it with us to grandparents’ houses or wherever there might not be a high chair.  Plus it reclines so you can start them in it way earlier than a regular high chair since he doesn’t need head control to be able to sit in it.  And it’s cheaper.

Ok commercial over.  Just buy one.
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He still loves baths!  He outgrew his baby tub and was splashing water out all over the table so we started giving him his baths in the big bathtub upstairs.
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I have several different carriers that I use with Hudson, but this was my first try at sewing one myself.  It’s a ring sling made out of mesh (like athletic shorts) and I made it with intentions to use it in the pool this summer, but I’ve found myself grabbing it and using it around the house more than I thought I would.  It was super easy (and cheap) to DIY, too.

Hudson is getting to where he likes to look around more when I’m wearing him so the ring sling is perfect.  I also did a back carry with the Ergo for the first time this month.  The first time I did it he cried, but the second time he rode there for a long time and eventually fell asleep.
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We spent two Saturdays this month working out at Big Reedy Christian Camp trying to get it finished up for camp this summer.  Well, I should say that Michael worked and Hudson and I just sat around and encouraged all the other workers.  There isn’t much construction that I can do with a baby.  This is the most time Hudson has spent in the heat and it just wore him out!  Both times he slept much more than usual after we got home in the evenings.
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I feel silly but I want to take a picture of Hudson in every outfit that he owns!  He’s just so stinkin’ cute, but also he grows out of them so fast I want to remember that he actually got to wear them!  This little church outfit only got worn once before it was too small.
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A onesie with a toolbelt like Daddy – yes please!  This is one of my favorites.
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Hudson has been trying to roll over pretty much since he was born but this month he finally accomplished it.  He rolled from his back to his front first, then a few days later he rolled from his front to his back.  Now he can do a complete back to front to back again roll when he wants.  It’s very exciting.
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Sometimes he grabs the edge of his blanket and takes it with him when he rolls…a little baby burrito!

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Last summer while we were on vacation, we bought a Harry Potter onesie for our unnamed, gender-unknown baby.  It’s so neat to see Hudson wearing it now!
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(about 12 weeks pregnant with Hudson in this picture)

IMG_2039I was so excited to find a cloth diaper with bees on it.  Our bees are doing much better this summer (we’ve already harvested some honey!) and Michael built a second beehive so we’ll have even more.  I thought it was neat to have a diaper with one of our hobbies on it.
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Guess what else we found this month?  Our toes!  Hudson started grabbing his toes, although he’s only tried to put them in his mouth once so far.  I must say, the combination of toe-grabbing and rolling over has made diaper changes much more adventurous than they used to be.

IMG_4825Such a big boy!
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We got Hudson a Jumperoo.  He’s not quite sure what to do with it yet.  You can see in the first picture that his feet don’t touch the ground yet.  We put a box under there as a platform until he’s tall enough for this feet to touch.
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When we first put him in he totally ignored all the toys – he was more interested in watching me to my exercise video.

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In addition to all of his babbles and coos that he normal does, he started making gurgley noises in the back of his throat, blowing spit bubbles, and buzzing his lips.IMG_4865
We celebrated Michael’s first real Father’s Day (I was pregnant last year on Father’s Day, so that counts of course, but this was his first one with Hudson).  I got Michael a card from Hudson and let Hudson “sign” it – I put the pen in his hand and he waved his hand around and made scribbles….his very first scribbles!

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Michael doesn’t wear ties much, but I just had to give him the “traditional” Father’s Day gift of a tie for his first Father’s Day.  He wore it to church and Hudson wore his bow tie too :).
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Check out this adorable cardigan! A friend of mine knitted it for Hudson and it looks so precious with his bow tie outfit.

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Now that he can roll over, Hudson doesn’t hate tummy time as much.  He still gets mad sometimes when he rolls to his front and can’t get flipped back over, but lots of times he’s roll over and hang out on his tummy for a while.  A big improvement!
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Babies in overalls are adorable.  Babies in overalls, collared shirts, and flip flops are a whole ‘nother level of cute!
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And check out this one!  I just love to squish those chubby knees!

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We never use that beautiful nursery that we worked so hard to finish.  He sleeps in our room and we’ve been changing him in the living room since he was born.  In fact, all of this clothes had migrated to to the living room and his closet was spread out over the backs of both couches.  But I decided it was time to start using the nursery at least a little bit, so I moved most of his clothes back up there.  While I was working on hanging clothes and sorting through some things we got at a yard sale I laid him down in his crib (that he’s been in exactly one time) and he had a good time hanging out in there.  He used his feet to knock the quilt off from where it was hanging on the back of the crib and was fascinated by all the designs.
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Trying out the Halo sleep sack instead of a swaddle for a nap.
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Trying a swaddle with both arms out.

IMG_5005We made a donation to our local rescue squad and in return we got a free family portrait.  It’s a very cheesy, weird background, throwback to the 90s style picture but hey, it was free, and I’m not going to turn down a family picture.  Of course Hudson scratched his face and spit up on his outfit three times before we actually got called back for our picture.  Sigh.

Check out my hair.  It had gotten SO long.  I think this is the longest it had ever been in my life.

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So it was time for a bit of a change – I went and got a bunch chopped off.  I didn’t go full-on mom haircut, but I did get something that takes less time to dry, doesn’t get caught in stuff all the time, and Hudson can’t pull on (quite as easily).

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These pictures aren’t very good – I had the camera on my phone turned around to do a selfie of my new haircut and the quality of the camera is lacking.  But, I had to share them anyway to show how similar our eyes look in these pictures. IMG_4992 IMG_4995
This just cracks me up.  Michael took these one day and it looks like Hudson is doing a little Irish jig.

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And that wraps up month #5!  I can’t wait to see what exciting things will happen this next month. 5 month collage

DIY sleep cream

sleep cream with Young Living essential oils

If you have a little one who does not sleep well then you need this sleep cream!  It’s easy to make and very effective.

Don’t hate me, but Hudson is a pretty good sleeper.  I mixed up this cream for him and use it on him most nights, but it really doesn’t seem to make a difference whether I use it or not since he sleeps fine either way.  However, I have three different friends with toddlers/babies who don’t (or rather, didn’t) sleep well…I mixed up a little sample of this cream for each of them and all three reported improvements in their kids’ sleep within the first night of use!

It works for me, too.  I rarely have issues falling asleep but two or three times over the last few months I’ve been unable to fall asleep right away.  After tossing and turning for a while each time, I finally would get up and rub some sleep cream on my feet…and then fall asleep in just a few short minutes.

It’s definitely something to consider trying if your little guy or gal (or big guy or gal) is having some sleep issues.  Not to mention, it is super easy to make!

It’s basically just a base of coconut oil with essential oils that are good for helping with relaxation and sleep mixed in.  I like to make a cream for several reasons – mixing the oils in the cream stretches them so that instead of using a drop of each one every night you are just using a fraction of a drop at a time and saves you money; plus having the cream pre-mixed saves you from having to open multiple bottles of oil each night.

Here’s what you need:

1/2 cup coconut oil (see below for my recommendations)
10 drops lavender
10 drops Valor
10 drops Stress Away
10 drops cedarwood
10 drops lemon
10 drops Peace & Calming (note: Peace & Calming can have the opposite effect for some people and make them feel energized rather than relaxed.  If that is the case for you then leave it out.  I put it in mine because it doesn’t seem to bother Hudson or me, but I usually leave it out when I mix a sample for someone else)

A glass jar to store the mixture in (a 4 oz Mason jelly jar works perfectly)

sleep cream ingredients

Here’s what you do:

Whip the coconut oil in a mixer (or with fork if you want to get your arm workout in for the day).  Add oils and mix together.

That’s it.

Easy peasy.

Rub a little of the cream on your feet before bed.

Young Living sleep cream recipe

I use Nutiva coconut oil.  Quality oil for a good price.  You can buy it from Amazon or Vitacost (If you are new to Vitacost you should be able to sign up and get a $10 off coupon here…making your first jar of coconut oil free!).

The oils I use are all Young Living oils.  You can go here to find out how to order them.

This recipe can be altered for all kinds of things.  I’ve used the coconut oil base plus various essential oils to make a variety of creams.  Some of them include stretch mark cream (my stretch marks from Hudson have faded a bit since using this), germ-away (I used this every time we went out in public with Hudson during the winter months), pain cream (wonderful for rubbing on sore muscles), and diaper cream.

OBLIGATORY DISCLAIMER: The oils listed in the testimony above were ONLY Young Living essential oils. Do not expect the same results with any other essential oils. These statements were not evaluated by the FDA and were not intended to diagnose, prescribe or treat. Please seek the advice of your chosen health practitioner.