Things to Prepare for During Pregnancy

Finding out you’re expecting is so exciting, but other than that little plus sign on a stick it’s not always immediately noticeable that you’re pregnant. You might not be climbing into the maternity jeans just yet, but when you first find out you’re pregnant there are some things you should prepare for so you’re ready when they come.

Maternity leave

If you work, find out your company’s policy on maternity leave. Plan ahead of time so you can make arrangements if you plan to go back to work, completing projects, adjusting deadlines, or arranging replacements for your absence. Remember that these dates should be flexible – babies tend to operate on their own schedule, but as long as you are in communication with your HR department so they’re in the loop you should be good to go.

Maternity clothing

I was both eager and nervous when it came to wearing maternity clothing. Shopping was the fun part, but finding things that fit well and were comfortable was a whole other ball game. Buying a full wardrobe before you’re really big may mean you have another big shopping trip when you ARE big and shopping is the last thing you want to do. You can probably wear your regular clothes for a while at first, and when they start feeling tight you can buy a few universal pieces that will stretch no matter how big you go. Once you are bigger you’ll know for sure whether you like pants that cover your whole belly, sit under your belly, or don’t want pants at all. Flowy dresses were where it was at for me.

Travel adjustments

Once you are past a certain point, many doctors recommend against traveling while pregnant. If you have plans to travel or something comes up, you may need to make adjustments to your plans. Buying travel insurance or rescheduling a trip early on to avoid fees is a good idea for trips you can’t cancel completely.

Staying hydrated

As soon as you find out you’re pregnant, start prioritizing your water intake. Your body produces and circulates a higher blood volume to deliver nutrients to the baby and aid in development, as well as keep your own body functioning through the changes, and drinking water is essential to keep all of your body’s fluids replenished.

Breastfeeding

I didn’t realize that my boobs would start leaking and changing during pregnancy, MONTHS before my baby was born. It’s never too early in your pregnancy to start reading up on these expected changes and buying some staple items. You should probably wait to buy a bra until you know for sure what size you’ll need, but you can stock up on Lanolin and nursing pads.

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7 Springtime Baby Shower Ideas

I don’t know about you, but spring is by far my favorite season. There’s just something magical about blooming trees and flowers… plus, it’s lilac and peony season. Springtime is also a fun time to host a baby shower! So, if you or someone you love is expecting, here are seven springtime baby shower ideas:

1. April Showers Bring May Flowers

You knew I had to go there, right?! While this may seem like an obvious theme for spring, the decoration possibilities are endless. Decorate with a raindrop banner, fresh blooms and serve desserts in little rain buckets. And don’t forget the umbrellas! I’m envisioning a diaper cake embellished by some die cut umbrellas, clouds and flowers.

2. Peter Rabbit

This is an especially fun idea if the mama-to-be is a bibliophile, or if she really likes rabbits. Think crisp, fresh veggies and fruits, cute stuffed animals and lots of whimsy. You can even throw in a bunny cake topper and/or bunny shaped cookies for good measure. If you’re into having live floral arrangements, go for a more organic, wildflower look. And don’t forget to gift the book.

3. Mommy to Bee

Who doesn’t love a great pun? Use all of the bee-themed decorations to create a sweet (literally, because there definitely should be honey involved) shower for your favorite mama-to-be. Ideas include honey sticks as party favors, yellow tulips and accents, as well as black and white striped straws.

4. Secret Garden

This is a fun way to host a great garden party, and give it a little literary twist. It could even be a fun tea-themed garden party (mix and match tea pots and saucers for a fun vibe), or you could stick more to the element from the story. But this is a great gift to consider. This garden themed shower featured grassy placements and floral garlands galore.

5. Little Bird

If you love birds, or if you love the idea of birds, this could be the baby shower theme for you. Decorate with birdhouses and branches for full effect, and create little nest desserts filled with all the best candy eggs. (I’m looking at you, Cadbury and Reese’s.) You can make all of the accents light blue or light pink, and take advantage of those pastel colors to make it seem extra spring-like.

6. Paper Flowers Everywhere

If fresh flowers aren’t your thing, or if they induce too many allergies, think about paper flowers. This party provides great inspiration for some ideas of how to incorporate said flowers into the decor, desserts and favors for this type of a shower. There are also some amazing artists who create delicate floral bouquets out of paper, and this could be a meaningful gift to the expecting mom.

7. Little Miss/Mr. Sunshine

If the gender of the baby is not a surprise, this could be a fun route to go. Using soft pastel colors and flowers to create a sunshine-filled shower feels perfect for spring. You could go really literal with the sun theme, or you could go the referential route and decorate and serve things that seem evocative of sunshine. Either way, it’ll be sure to be a happy, bright event.

What are some of your favorite springtime baby shower ideas? 

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7 Ways New Moms Can Decompress and Find Peace of Mind After Baby

Having a baby changes everything. You transition from being more self-oriented to being fully engaged in the care of a tiny human. And that transition can be difficult. Today, we’re sharing seven ways new moms can decompress and find peace of mind after baby.

1. Schedule some “me” time.

Whether it’s five minutes, or an hour, actually writing down a timeframe for some “me” time can be really effective. Give yourself permission to nap while the baby naps, or to let your significant other take a shift while you relax. You’ll be amazed by how much setting a concrete schedule will help you establish a routine, and give you something to look forward to. Plus, you need to rest and recover too.

2. Practice yoga and/or meditation.

The great thing about technology is you have a wealth of it at your fingertips. Therefore, you don’t even have to leave your house to find some amazing yoga videos and meditation practices. Some are as short as five minutes long, but can really help reset your stress levels and provide a calming influence throughout the day. Find what works for you, and enjoy the positive effects.

3. Go outside.

Never underestimate the power of a breath of fresh air and a little bit of sunshine. And, if it’s not currently sunshiny where you live, a change of scenery is always a good thing. Especially if nature is involved. So whether it’s a little walk around the neighborhood or a short trip to a local park, get outside.

4. Ask for help.

Never be afraid to ask your loved ones for help. Maybe it’s your significant other or maybe your mom, a close friend or a trusted neighbor. Regardless of who it is, you will have people in your life who are more than willing to help. And they’ll ask you what they can do. So, tell them, and allow them to help you out when you need a break.

5. Treat yourself.

I feel like all of the world’s problems could be solved by a good massage, but maybe that’s just me. In all seriousness, a massage or other spa treatment can be restorative and help you decompress. If something like that is out of your budget, grab your favorite nail polish and have your own little mani/pedi session. Or buy your favorite treat from your local bakery. Or go see a movie all by yourself. Maybe you can just binge watch all of this show again. Don’t be afraid to treat yourself, even if it’s just a tiny bit.

6. Call a friend.

Sometimes you just need one (or more) of your ladies. Never underestimate the empowerment that can come from communing with your friends. It’s an important way to process stress and handle it accordingly. Plus, it’s always nice to chat.

7. Take up an old hobby.

Taking up an old hobby is a great way to connect to who you were before you had your baby. Because it’s really easy to forget, especially during those first few months. It’s important to remember that it’s healthy to have your own interests and pursue them. Maybe you’re a serious pianist or a decent watercolorist. Maybe you used to cross stitch when you were ten and have always wanted to take it up again. Whatever the activity is, reconnect with something you enjoyed and allow it to become a new way to relax and enjoy yourself.

New moms: what are some ways you like to decompress? 

 

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