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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday - Pretty Pink Bows

This is from our most recent photo session. Pink bows and Black T's, how cute are they?

Monday, April 26, 2010

What to do with my Swagbucks

How many of you use Swagbucks search engine? Ok, I see a few hands raised. For those of you going "What the heck are swagbucks?" let me give you the rundown.

Search & Win

Swagbucks are points that you earn just from searching for different websites. When you build up enough points you can trade them in for giftcards, video games and systems, dvds, electronics....well you get the idea. "Well, that sounds easy, how do I get started?" All you have to is head over to Swagbucks and sign up. Then you download their toolbar, make sure you use it for all your searches and start earning major points! The best part? It's completely free!!

Ready to get started or want to learn more about Swagbucks? Just click the icon right here in this post to get started! Easy Peasy!

Now, I have some swagbucks saved up, not a lot but enough for a few $5 Amazon giftcards. So I am debating if I should go ahead and trade them in now for the giftcards or wait until I have more. Hmmm....I think I'll cash them in.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Why is it so hard to pack for vacation??

Bug and I are headed back down to stay with my grandma for the week. BooBoo is already there and missing us terribly. While I love going to visit my family, I hate having to pack. It is literally an all day event to pack everything. I have to make a "Don't forget to pack" list. Since we are leaving in a few hours, I spent all day Saturday packing and re-packing. What could I possibly need to pack that takes an entire day, you ask?

Well, it is not so much what I am packing as it is who I am packing for. I have to pack for myself, Bug and BooBoo (because she only has two outfits to wear at the moment). That is at least one week's worth of clothes for each of us, bath supplies, extra shoes, hairdryer, straightening iron, and ring sling in our ginormous duffel style suitcase. Then there is the diaper bag which has an extra change of clothes, cloth wipes, 3 diapers, camera, bibs, burp cloth, sippy cup, and toys. (There is more but I cannot remember it all). Next is my purse (small size), which currently holds my wallet, keys, cellphone, dayplanner, makeup bag, bottle of lotion, body spray, deodorant, ibuprofen, and sunglasses. Plus, a smaller duffel which is strictly for Bug's cloth diapers and detergent. Ok, dolls and toys get stored in there as well! I also have to take the Pack n' Play, stroller and a tricycle (not coming back with us). That is a lot of stuff! Thank goodness we have an SUV or I don't know what we would do. Now, I know that some of you are reading this and saying "Well, you could just take a couple of outfits each and just wash them". This would be true if we did not live in Ohio. Because as most Ohioans know, it does not matter how many times you check the weather it is bound to be the exact opposite. So I had to pack a couple of short sleeve shirts, a couple of long sleeve shirts, pants and shorts each. Packing is exhausting and gives me a headache. What sucks the most is that we are planning a summer trip to visit my grandparents in South Carolina. If I am this paranoid about what to pack for a trip two hours away, imagine what I will be like for a 12 hour trip!!!!

To my readers, when you take your little ones on vacation or even an over night trip, what do you bring? How do you decide what is absolutely necessary? Do you find it harder to pack for multiple little ones?

Friday, April 23, 2010

While BooBoo's away, Bug will play.

I miss my BooBoo =( She is currently visiting my grandma who lives two hours away. We went down last weekend to visit and when J, Bug and I got ready to leave; BooBoo asked if she could stay. So, J and I told that she could stay since Bug and I would be coming back down on Sunday the 25th to visit for a whole week. I think that BooBoo has been enjoying being the "baby" at Mamaw's but I miss my big girl. The one positive this week has been that I have cleaned like a mad woman. I caught up on laundry and rearranged the girls room. Plus, I have been able to catch up on some of my favorite blogs.

Also, Bug has hit a few milestones in the past month or so. She loves to clap her hands when she is happy or listening to music. She even sounds like she is saying "clap" when she does it! She has also had her two bottom teeth come in! This has made breastfeeding interesting. She actually got made at bedtime one night and bit me so hard she drew blood! (Daddy put her to bed that night)! She has managed to learn the "Army crawl" to scoot around the living room. Her 9 month check-up is set for May 12th so I will post her new stats then.

I will be out of town April 25th -May 2nd (at least) but I will try to post a couple of times while I am away!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Cloth in Hospitals Earth Day Telephone Game Giveaway

I learned about cloth diapers when I was 8 months pregnant with Bug. I wanted to cover her baby booty in cloth right from the get-go but was not able to start until she was two weeks old. Our hospital, while very breastfeeding friendly, does not use cloth diapers =( I know that many other hospitals do not use cloth either, so why not try to change that?

Head over to the We want to see cloth diapers in hospitals Facebook page to join the cause. Or if you want to win some free fluff (and who doesn't) head over to the Cloth Diapers in Hospitals blog to join the telephone game. There are numerous chances to enter and all you have to do is spread the word about getting cloth into hospitals. How much easier could it be???

I know that I will be contacting my local hospital to see about getting them to use cloth, or pass out cloth information. Why not join me and other cloth diapering mamas to make a difference this Earth Day?

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Get The Inside Poop - Cloth Diapers Twitter Party

You have been invited...

To the Get Real- The Inside Poop Cloth Diapers Twitter Party!

When: Earth Day, Thursday, April 22nd

Where: Twitter

Time: 9:00pm-10:00pm EST

Note: Make sure to use hashtag #GetRealDiapers

Interested in cloth diapers? Not sure where to start? Come join other cloth diapering mamas, newbies and those not yet into cloth on Twitter, Thursday, April 22nd from 9-10pm EST. Just search hashtag: #GetRealDiapers. (I use Tweetgrid for Twitter parties!) There will be numerous cloth diaper prize packages to win. All you have to do to be eligible to win is register here. And because I know how awesome you all are, make sure to let them know that I referred you :)

Referral Info:

Name: Jess Charleston

Blog: Life With BooBoo and Bug (http://lifewithboobooandbug.blogspot.com/)

Twitter ID: @graceandbrynley

Can't wait to see you all there!!!!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Juicy Baby Designs Review

"Juicy Baby Designs specializes in Nursing covers, Nursing pads, and Burp cloths & Bibs for your "juicy" baby." They also carry Bumgenius brand cloth diapers and Crunchy Clean detergent.

Ruthann, creator of Juicy Baby Designs, contacted me about doing a review of her burp cloths or "juice catchers". I let her know that I would be happy to review and we worked out the details. Ruthann sent me not one, but two of her burp cloths. These could not have come at a more perfect time. Bug is currently teething and since she chews on everything, there are pools of drool throughout our house. Not to mention my shirt sleeves often look like I sweat all the time.
About the Designer (taken from website):
"I am the proud mama of a sweet baby boy, and the story of Juicy Baby Designs starts about 3am one bleary-eyed morning...after what seemed like the hundredth burp cloth and bib I had used to clean up my baby boy's spit-up, I sat wondering if there might be a better solution to my messy plight! In the three short months since my son was born, my husband and I had often found ourselves covered in spit-up, having to change outfits (both ours and baby's) only after the burp cloth and/or bib had failed to collect all the milky spit and drool! I called my son my "juicy boy", because he spit up just about every time he nursed and often between feedings, too! The more I thought about it, the more I was inspired by the idea of super quick absorbent burp cloths and bibs! My son's nickname "juicy boy" was the perfect inspiration for my line of burp cloths and bibs and "Juicy Baby Designs" was born.

About the Product:
These burp cloths are contoured to fit against the neck so that they stay in place. They are made of flannel, ProCool wicking jersey, and zorb. This combination makes these burp cloths super absorbent. I was sent a "Lil Juicer" for regular messes in Pink Giraffe print and a "Juice Catcher" for really "juicy" babies in Pink & Flowers print. At Juicy Baby Designs, you get to choose the flannel print that you would like for your burp cloths.

The Review:
We put these burp cloths through many tests and washes. Bug chews on them, throws them around and even sleeps with the "Lil Juicer"! These burp cloths show no signs of wear or tear which really impressed me. The contoured shape fit both my shoulder and J's and did help the cloth stay in place. One bonus of the contoured shape is that it makes the burp cloth into a handy changing pad for emergencies. The absorbency of the "Lil Juicer" worked well for nursing sessions. Bug often falls asleep nursing and the lighter burp cloth kept drool from soaking my shirt as I transitioned her to my shoulder. The heavy-duty "Juice Catcher" really holds a lot of liquid! We had one particularly drool covered day and this little bad boy really came through! I rigged the burp cloth into a make shift bib and after 30 minutes of hardcore drooling Bug's shirt was bone dry. That made for one happy mommy and baby :) If you are looking for a strong, absorbent burp cloth then head on over to http://www.juicybabydesigns.com/.
I received two Juicy Baby Designs burp cloths free of charge in exchange for my review. This, however, in no way affected the review. Everything is 100% my own opinion.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Look at my WONDERFUL new blog layout!

Don't you just love my new layout? Well, I sure do! I won a blog makeover by So Stylilized from Life Happens During Naptime back in March and it is now up and running. Jessica from So Stylilized was so great to work with. She took my likes, what I wanted my blog to represent, and a few little tidbits and made the wonderful layout. Honestly, it is way more than I was expecting and I could not be happier with it. So while you are here, take a look around, grab my button if you'd like and leave me a comment letting my know what you think. =)

Wordless Wednesday - Sleepy Time

Monday, April 12, 2010

I love breastfeeding, even in public!

I love being a breastfeeding mother. Yes, you read that right, I love breastfeeding. Sure we (breastfeeding and I) have had our ups and downs, we almost broke up once when BooBoo was about 3 weeks old, but we managed to put our problems behind us and keep going. Let me share with you some of those ups and downs. :)

When I had BooBoo I was unable to nurse her within the first hour of her life because the doctors had knocked me out after my c-section. Right from the beginning BooBoo had some problems latching on. I, as a first time mom, had no idea what I was doing during her feedings. The LC at the hospital was no help, I think I met her once! The nurses were not supportive and I had one that roughly shoved BooBoo on my breast causing me severe pain. So, the first three weeks of BooBoo's life involved me having raw, bruised nipples (TMI-but part of my story) and so much pain that whenever she nursed my toes would curl. J hated seeing me in pain and told me that if I wanted to I could just switch BooBoo to formula. I decided that I would just keep trying different nursing positions and continue correcting BooBoo's latch. J even asked if there was anything he could do to help! It took two more weeks but finally Booboo and I had got the hang of nursing. She began nursing like a champ and I no longer curled my toes.

Then came our next obstacle, nursing in public. I like to believe that today I am an old pro at nursing in public. But back in the day, it took a little while to feel comfortable nursing around strangers. I thought that covering up with a blanket would help, WRONG! BooBoo consistently tried to claw her way out, got overheated and would not nurse for long. So I quit covering up. Wow, I gained more confidence in nursing by giving up the blanket. BooBoo was happy and I realized that people stare MORE when I covered with a blanket than without because they KNEW what was going on under there. It was like a giant "look at me" sign. I learned to wear button-down, v-neck or wrap around shirts. If I wore a t-shirt, I made sure to wear a nursing tank underneath. BooBoo gave up nursing at 14 months and while I was a little heartbroken, I was happy I never gave up and we made it more than a year!

Bug has been completely different. In the hospital, the nurses brought her right into the recovery room to nurse. They were amazed that she latched on perfectly the very first time! Bug never once had a bottle and I am so glad. We did see the LC a couple of times but that is because Bug started having trouble latching (which the LC said was from my having large nipples, again TMI). But by the time we left the hospital, we were back to an enjoyable nursing experience. When Bug was 10 days old, I ended up in the ER with Mastitis. I knew what was wrong right away because I felt like I had been hit by a bus, my breast had a huge hot, red spot and it hurt my chest to lean over or feed Bug. I was given a prescription for antibiotics and told not to nurse Bug from the infected side, just pump and dump that side. But I took the advice of a few moms and continued to nurse Bug on both sides and just watch her for any problems. Thankfully, my Mastitis cleared up and I have not had another bout since. I will be honest, it was the worst pain and I felt awful.

Nursing in public with Bug has been a piece of cake. The first large place we nursed at was the zoo. Sure a few people looked as they were walking by, but they were more interested in seeing my gorgeous baby girl rather than my "girls". Now, I have covered up myself a few times while nursing but never Bug. I am currently reviewing these wonderful burp cloths (review coming this week) and they are perfect for covering my breast but not Bug's face.

Again, I love breastfeeding and I have no problem nursing in public. Now, there has been large debate on Twitter over the past few days about whether or not a woman should have to cover up when nursing in public. I say no, I should not be made to cover up my nursing child just because it makes someone else uncomfortable. If that makes me sound selfish, well then I'm sorry but making sure my child is getting the most out of a feeding is more important than you seeing my breast. Quit staring at me and it wouldn't be a problem. I will not be made to nurse my child in a bathroom (ewww), under a blanket, in a corner, or another room. If you have a problem then maybe you should be the one to leave. It is my legal right to nurse in public. It is not as though I am completely taking my top off, throwing my breasts on a plate and saying " Here little one, eat up!". Breastfeeding is natural and those who complain about see a breast are the ones who make it seem unnatural. Do not make my feeding my child sound like a criminal offense.

In the spirit of Dirty Dancing: "Nobody puts Baby under a blanket!".

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Slowly Getting the Hang of Things...

I finally added an email subscription to my blog! So if any of my wonderful readers would like to receive updates from me via email, go ahead and sign up just to the right of this post!


Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter and My Birthday

Yesterday was Easter and I was very excited about because it was Bug's first Easter! It was also my 24th birthday! Not as significant to some but for me it means that I managed to stay alive one more year. :)

J, Bug and I headed over to J's aunt and uncle's house to have Easter lunch/dinner with all of his family. BooBoo had stayed the night with J's mom so she came with her. For the most part the visit went well, although I did have to excuse myself once or twice to keep from telling a couple of J's relatives exactly what I thought of them (whoops!). I'm sorry but if I tell you that Bug is cranky and does not want to be held by anyone, I mean it. How hard is that to understand?!?! But noooooo, these unnamed relatives feel it is necessary to slowly rip Bug from my arms. Then they wonder why she is crying or say it is because "she only wants her mommy because she is still on mommy's boob." Sometimes I just want to punch them in the face.

*Sorry to vent, I'll take a moment to get a few deep breaths*

Ahhh, that's better. As I was saying the visit went well minus the baby issues. BooBoo played with her cousin the whole time and Bug noshed on turkey and noodles. After most of the family had left, my brother-in-law brought out B's (J's sister and brother-in-law's son) mini quad. BooBoo was so excited she ran over and climbed up on it before they even started it! She managed to step away long enough to put on a helmet and let them start the quad. She looked so dainty in her dress and sparkly shoes riding the quad. Everything was AWESOME, she was having fun because the boys were helping lead her around the backyard. Then, BooBoo decided that she wanted to try to ride by herself, ok, so my BIL showed her how to make it go and how to stop. It took her a couple of tries to get going but she finally figured it out and TOOK OFF FAST!!!!!!! She headed straight for the shed, swerved at the last second and in the middle of the sharp turn...CRASH! She fell off and pulled the quad over with her. That was the scariest few seconds ever. All you saw were people running towards her and her crying. Thankfully she only bruised her elbow and got some grass stains on her knee. She cried for a little while and then she was ready to give the quad another go (as long as it was not started). This Easter was definitely full of excitement and memories. Here are a some photos of the day (*note, the photos of the babies on the quad and the ones of BooBoo and B were taken with the quad turned off.)

Friday, April 2, 2010

BooBoo's 4 year checkup (AKA: Why we have to meet an endocrinologist)

BooBoo had her 4 year checkup at the pediatrician on Wednesday. Unfortunately it did not go as well as I had hoped. We spent about an hour and a half at the office and were told that BooBoo needs to meet with an endocrinologist. I knew that there was a possibility she would need further tests done pending the results of her bone age test.

* A bone age test, for those that have not heard of one, is basically just an x-ray of the left wrist and hand that is used to examine the rate of growth in an individual.

BooBoo's bone age testing showed that at 3 1/2 years old (this was done in August) she was closer to the size of a 2 1/2 year old or 3 year old. She has also only grown about half of an inch in one year. The doctor explained to me that most children reach half of their adult height by the time they turn 2 years old. BooBoo was exactly half of her "predicted" adult height at 2 but then she just kind of stopped growing. So that is why the doctor is concerned, well that and she has only gained 2 pounds since August! I mean I try to get her to eat more but she only takes a bite here and there. There are days where she will eat and eat but not often. :( Sorry, went on a tangent.

J and I are not as concerned about BooBoo's height only because my family is on the shorter side. My mom is 4' 11", my sister is 5' 4", my brother at 18 is only 5' 4" (but his bone age is 2 years behind his actual age), my maternal grandmother is right around 5' 1" and I am only 5' 3". The doctor has never asked about the heights of any extended family and this is why we are not as worried. We love BooBoo no matter what her size!

So, what have we learned? BooBoo is tiny for her age and we have been referred to Children's Hospital in Columbus for a meeting with an endocrinologist *(That meeting has been scheduled for June so I'll update on that then!). Other than being small the doctor said she is a happy, bright 4 year old. He was impressed that on the developmental questionnaire papers they make the parents fill out, BooBoo could do everything on the 4-6 year olds paper!