Posts Tagged ‘new moms’

New Mom Gift Guide

Thursday, December 8th, 2016

screen-shot-2016-12-05-at-12-19-13-pmI recently became a new mom for the third time. I welcomed my sweet little baby girl, Audrey Faith, just two weeks ago. I shop regularly from Mom’s Milk Boutique and have discovered a few products that are must-haves, in my opinion, for the new mom this holiday season. Prepare to be amazed.

Milk Makers Cookies: Every nursing mom can use a boost to help with her supply and every woman can use a cookie now and then. I recently purchased these cookies in the oatmeal chocolate chip flavor. They cost $21.99 and 10 cookies come in the over 1 pound bag. The cookies are already made, which is great for a new mom who has her hands full. The key ingredients, including brewer’s yeast and flax seed, in the cookies can help with milk production. There are 220 calories per cookie, so you can eat them without feeling guilty. I usually eat a cookie after my kids go to bed, and they do not disappoint. I have noticed they help with my milk supply, too.

Eco Sprouts Coconut Stick: I purchased two of these sticks after a friend recommended them for my hospital bag must-have list. I was a little skeptical, but I am so glad I bought them. I bought one for baby and one for me. This stick is huge and costs $11.99 on Amazon.com. It can easily be thrown into a hospital or diaper bag. I have used it for those first days of sore nipples in the hospital and for a diaper rash healer for Audrey already. It is cloth diaper safe, so no worries there. It can be used for many other things and smells like yummy coconut. I have also heard it works great for those first meconium diapers, as well.

Earth Mama Angel Baby New Momma Bottom Spray: I bought this spray on a whim, but it has been my favorite postpartum item so far. It comes in a bottle and costs $14.95. The spray is a cooling perineal mist that helps after baby arrives. It pairs great with any products your hospital or midwife encourage you to use down there after delivery. It is said to help with vaginal soreness and even hemorrhoids. It contains witch hazel, lavender, and peppermint essential oils. It smells like a cucumber. It is amazing, my friend. I use it regularly for any discomforts.

Boba Wrap: Every new mom needs a baby carrier for those moments when baby just needs to be close but mom needs to do something, too. I have used my boba baby carrier wrap with all 3 of my littles from birth and on. This carrier is perfect for babies from birth until 18 months and retails for $49.95. I have it in a pretty floral print, but it also comes in solid colors. It isn’t hard to figure out how to use and is perfect for keeping a little baby close and safe, while you need your hands. It stores easily in a bag and is machine washable, which is great with a baby who regularly spits up on you. I use this carrier at home daily to clean, get ready in the mornings, or just put my little one in when she doesn’t want to be put down.

So with the holidays approaching, here are some fun and useful new gifts for the new mom in your life. It amazes me of all of the new products available to moms. Find some that work for you and try these out!

Karyn Meyerhoff is a mom of three in Arkansas where she highly endorses all of these amazing products at the holidays and year round. 

Making Mom Friends

Friday, September 9th, 2016

making mom friends

At some point when my older daughter was around four months old, I began to feel more human again. I was coming out of the fog of having a newborn.  Unfortunately, this is when the loneliness set in. I was a new stay-at-home mom. Many of my friends from high school and college had older kids.  My friends in my current city did not have children yet, and they didn’t understand why I gave up a job I loved to stay home.  I felt like I no longer fit in anywhere.

One morning, I brought my daughter in to meet my husband’s coworkers, and an older woman asked how I was transitioning to being home.  Without waiting for me to answer, she said something to me that has stuck with me.

“Don’t be afraid.  Get out and do stuff.  Make the first move, ask the other mom to get a cup of coffee.  She’s just as scared and lonely as you are.”

She then told me how lonely she was at first being a stay-at-home mom.  Like me, she worked a while before having kids and took a break while they were little.  She also said that some of the moms she met when her oldest was a baby are still her best friends even though their kids were grown up.  It seemed like she knew exactly what I needed to hear that morning.

I took her advice to heart and began looking for mommy and me classes and mom meet ups to do. I used meetup.com and found a mom’s knitting group to go to.  I went to baby story time. I joined MOPS.  And I took the plunge and began asking some of the other moms to get a cup of coffee or lunch after the classes or meet ups.  Some of the moms I clicked with, and some I didn’t. It almost felt like I was dating again, only this time I was looking for new friends.

I’ve lost touch with some of the moms I met that first year, and now with a three-year-old and an almost one-year-old, I don’t have as much time to do all the classes and groups as I used to. I have become close friends with a few of the moms I met, too.  And I always remember the advice I received from my husband’s coworker whenever I am in a new mom group situation.

Becky Nagel is a stay-at-home mom from Denver, CO to two girls, 3 years and 11 months old, who enjoys cooking, running, and hiking.

Amazing Moms: Christina

Thursday, December 31st, 2015

Most women know a few moms who just amaze them. For me, I have several ladies who I look up to, admire, and turn to for advice. One of these ladies is my dear Christina. I have known Christina for just over two years, and the more I learn about this mom, the more I find her amazing.

Christina has two small children who are 3 and 6 months. I always thought she mothered with great composure, but with the arrival of her sweet baby girl, I am continued to be amazed. She mothers with patience, love, and extreme goodness. When her kids are not listening, she maintains her composure and guides them. I have never seen her lose her cool with her kids. Her family isn’t near-by, and her husband works very long hours. His job involves putting himself in danger to protect others, but she is strong and courageous alongside his career.

amazing moms

Giving Back

Christina is always there to help. When I had my son Levi, she was at my house, entertaining my other child outside so I could get some alone time with my newborn inside my house. She brought me food. She stopped at Starbucks on her way, because she knows I need my coffee. If I ever have a problem, she is right there to help, listen, and keep me in line. Christina volunteers at her local church with the children. She nurtures, guides, and loves them. She is also a member of my local MOPS group. She has a willing spirit and often helps with activities and whatever the needs are of our group. She has volunteered to take meals to new moms, even though they didn’t live near-by.

Amazing Talent

As a mom, I often forget I have talents and hobbies. Christina has never lost sight of her creative juices. She has a very successful Etsy shop where she does graphic design. Her work takes time, but she is always on time with her orders. She creates prints, invitations, and other paper goods with creativity and beauty. Christina uses her gifts for good. I admire that she doesn’t lose sight of herself as a person, even though her days are spent in the tasks of a stay-at-home mom.

My friend Christina is just amazing. She is always a listening ear. She puts herself out there to make new friends at our local MOPS group. If anyone is in need, she would give up her home to help out. She is out there making a difference for moms like me who just need encouraged. I am lucky to call her friend. Her kids are blessed to call her mom.

Karyn Meyerhoff lives and writes in Northeast Indiana where she knows a few amazing moms.

Holiday Gifts for the New Mom in your Life

Friday, December 18th, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-12-09 at 9.46.18 AMThere is nothing quite the experience of being pregnant with your first baby. It’s exhilarating, exciting, exhausting and frightening all at once! Take advantage of the holiday season to pamper the first-time mom in your life with some of these fantastic holiday gifts.

Photo session. Too many moms end up looking back and regretting that they didn’t have this time documented in pictures–I know I did! Help the new mom in your life by finding an amazing maternity or birth photographer to document this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Spa gift certificate. Once the baby comes it will be a long time before the new mommy gets some me time to do nothing but relax. Take advantage of the days before the complications of coordinating childcare begins and book a full day of pampering or a specialize prenatal massage.

Restaurant gift certificate. With smell and taste aversions during pregnancy sometimes it’s just easier to just go out for a nice meal instead of cooking at home– especially during the first trimester and the final stretch of pregnancy! Make sure you do some research to find some favorite restaurants so the gift cards don’t go unused.

Food delivery service. Probably my favorite gift for after the baby arrives! Navigating a newborn baby for the first time can be stressful and having a great, healthy, fresh meal can be a lifesaver. Search out local meal delivery services that can either deliver daily or a few days of meals at a time. If the due date is still a few months away you can still set this up and present mom with a gift card to cash in when the time comes.

Monthly goody boxes. It’s the gift that keeps on giving! Focus instantly shifts to the new baby and it can be so nice for a new mom to have a little something just for her to look forward to each month. Birchbox and Julep are great choice for fun, high-end beauty and makeup products. Taste Trunk is great for the foodie in your life and Escape Monthly is fabulous for the travel lover. No matter what the new mom in your life loves you’re sure to find a subscription box that she will love!

Magazine subscriptions. Another fun little gift that mom can look forward to every month. I would skip the baby magazine subscriptions and stick with a subject that interests her whether it is fashion, culture, literature, travel or science. Having a new magazine to flip through every month can be such a simple, unexpected treat.

Jacqueline Banks is a certified Holistic Health Counselor focused on nutrition and green living strategies. She works with women in all stages of motherhood, from mothers struggling with conception, through pregnancy, lactation and beyond to ensure the best health and nutrition for both mother and baby.

 

 

Baby Secrets: The Best Articles on Newborns

Monday, January 5th, 2015

Baby Secrets: The Best Articles on NewbornsWhen I was a new mom, I so desperately wanted to find “the book” that had all the answers for me. Reading voraciously had served me well with my birth, but it was proving useless with my first tiny, angry newborn. The more I read, the more dependent I felt on baby books to give me the answers. It led to me nearly spending $75 on a CD set that promised to help me “decode” my baby’s cries, and sitting in the aisle of a used bookstore, surrounded by books on newborn sleep, crying in exhaustion.

The right book wasn’t out there, because no one had written a book on my baby. No one has written one on yours, either. The resources I found most helpful were the ones that help new moms tap into their own motherly intuition and instincts and empower them. Like the Good Witch says to Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, “You ‘ve always had the power, my dear. You just had to learn it for yourself.”

Here is a roundup of the articles I think best help new moms learn that they have the power to take care of their baby without any outside help, books, or advice.

  1. Normal Newborn Behavior – The Leaky Boob. This, a thousand times. I learned information in this article that wasn’t covered in all three rounds of childbirth education and breastfeeding classes! I send this to pregnant moms who ask me for good resources, and then I sent it again after baby is born and remind them to read it again.
  2. What You Need to Know about Newborns – Pregnant Chicken. This article reminds you that newborns are hard. No book or baby guide is going to make it easier, no matter what your Aunt Brenda who had 7 kids back in the 70s says worked for her. Find what it takes to survive and do it—no guilt.
  3. Wonder Weeks Chart – Wonder Weeks. The wonder weeks chart helps you tune into baby’s development process and growth so you don’t feel so powerless when they are hard to soothe or cry a lot. It’s not you, it’s not your milk, it’s not because you didn’t begin sleep training on day one. Information is power!
  4. Timeline of a Postpartum Recovery – AlphaParent. So much of what’s covered here was NOT covered by my midwives, ever. Having a baby is a lot like a virgin’s wedding night—all the fuss is centered around what leads up to the main event, and no one tells you what to expect the morning after. This article covers details on recovery from both vaginal and c-section births.
  5. Safe Cosleeping Guidelines – University of Notre Dame. Cosleeping is a great tool to have in your newborn toolbox, but there’s lots of misleading and frightening information on it. This article is from a researcher, so it’s purely information and leaves the decision-making to the parents. What a concept!
  6. The Five S’s – Happiest Baby on the Block. This is probably an amazing book, but I’ve never had time to read it. Here is the clifnotes version via Dr. Phil. I am linking to this video because the steps are clearly explained, and there’s also a demo on how to swaddle your baby without using one of those fancy Velcro blankets.
  7. Latching and Positioning Resources – KellyMom. There are so many ways to nurse, but in the media and in popular representations of breasfeeding, new moms may have only seen one—the cross-cradle hold. A good knowledge of how to latch and how to hold baby to prevent colic, spitting up and gas is invaluable.
  8. The Rollover Diaper Change method – MamasChiropractic. This will be life changing for you if you baby is a super-spitter, or if your baby is crying a lot from colic. I had two babies who were very colicky and spit up a ton, and then I learned this method and used it with my third. No spit up! Amazing.

All of these resources have one thing in common: They teach moms the secrets of babies. Their growth, their habits, what they are going through at this stage in life. These are the things that used to get passed down through a woman’s village–her sisters, her mother, her aunts, the women in town who served as lay midwives and had vast experience with babies. New moms need the baby secrets, not parenting advice. Every woman knows how to best parent their baby from day one. We’re born with it.

What resources empowered you as a new mom? What articles do you pass on to new moms in need?

Erin Burt is a freelance writer and mom to three girls. She lives and writes in Queensbury, New York.