Out of Hibernation

I can’t tell you how many times i went into work puking during my first trimester or had to pull over on my way to work to puke- more times than I can count. Rushing to appointments after my shift or pushing through days where i had hip pain or barely any sleep. I did that because I wanted to save every bit of my maternity leave for AFTER Brylee got here so I could spend time with her. FMLA gives you 12 weeks but you take away from that if you call out sick due to pregnancy or if you have to leave for appointments.

After 2.5 months home with my B’s, I finally had to venture back to the working world. Bittersweet but overall I’m glad to be back! Im also glad I didn’t have to drive through ANY snow storms this year!!! As I have said before, being a stay at home mom is just not for me. I admire stay at home moms and women who run  in-home daycares- it is not as easy as people make it seem. They certainly don’t get enough credit. People think they sit around and watch T.V. all day. uh. no. They literally break a sweat- chasing toddlers, tantrums, screaming babies, poopy diapers..or even worse poopy highchairs or tubs!!!! ugh!

So I am glad to get back to work. Its actually a break from the chaos. I get to have a lunch break!!!! wha??? 30 minutes of quiet solitude? count me in!!

oh AND I have a reason to shower and put makeup on! feels so good to feel good about myself! I won’t even go into how many days in a row i skipped showers……

I had friends ask me to write what my schedule was like so I’m trying to be as detailed as possible. sorry if i bore some of you lol

I have allotted myself TWO HOURS AND FOURTY-FIVE MINUTES for the mornings. Over the weekend, I set out clothes for both of the kids for the whole week so i can just grab and go. Up at 5:15. I get one hour to get myself ready. 35 mins to get Brayden and Brylee ready. Between chasing a toddler and begging him to let me put his shoes on to praying for baby girl to burp that time fliessss by! Takes me 30 mins to get to the daycare (which is on my way to work) and about 15 mins to get them inside and say our goodbyes. Every bit of the last 30 minutes is spent fighting traffic and running into work.

Branden helps where he can if Brylee wakes between 5:15 and 6, he feeds her while I’m still getting ready. He has to leave at 6 to be to work by 7. Our daycare opens at 7 so thats why i am in charge of drop off i also pickup since branden works long shifts. He has off on Fridays so that will be my easy day! 🙂

I get up with the babies at night because… its easier that way. Like most men, he is a deep sleeper and I have mommy ears and hear every little sound. You girls know what I’m talking about.. you know…you never TRULY sleep, we are always subconsciously awake. For over a week now Brayden has been getting up in the middle of the night because he is teething a molar – it just popped through – hopefully that means there is an end in sight. He gets up once a night i just change his diaper, give him his paci and put him back in bed. Its not that hard but its one more time I have to get up during the night. Remember when Brylee was throwing up? we found out we were feeding her too much in a sitting. she can’t drink more than 2 oz at a time- this lasts her two hours. She used to sleep in 4 hr stretches sometimes even more but this past week she wakes up every two hours on the freaking dot…right down to the minute. I usually get up two-three times with her and once with Brayden… in an 8 hr time span. Its a good night if i get two hrs of interrupted sleep with these kids. I think they call people in my situation- a mombie.

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Drop off was 100 times easier then dropping off Brayden for the first time. Partially because I trust my babysitter and partially because I knew what to expect, I had already been through it so I knew my babies would be fine. I didn’t cry at all. i almost did but just because I was mortified that Brylee was screaming her head off like the diva she is [and no I don’t know who she gets it from ;)]. My biggest worry is that Brylee will scare away the babysitter…lol… but seriously I’m terrified…Brylee can be a pain..a cute pain.. but a pain. BTW, getting two kids in and out of the car is not as hard as I thought.

It was so nice to come home today! Brylee was all smiles and cooing for me and Brayden gave me so many hugs and kisses. I could tell he really missed me which was such a great feeling. When I put him to bed tonight he grabbed my head with both of his hands and pulled me in for a big kiss… he did this twice <3<3

He already had a night terror tonight which I honestly saw coming. Any time there is a big change in his life he does this. I know he loved daycare, he has a boy his age there to play with. He has so many new toys to play with that he barely even said bye to me this morning!!

Today was a success as I had hoped! Im running on fumes but as my mother in law always reminds me – this too shall pass! I’m so excited for our families future! ❤

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Child Lock Feature

I am a huge promoter of technology. Technology is the world we live in now. You would be holding your children back if you didn’t expose your children to it. I am SOOO glad that I was introduced to it when I was younger- it has helped me so much in my career. Now don’t get me wrong, I will NOT use gadgets as a babysitter. My kids WILL go outside and play. However, I do want them to understand how to use a computer, phone, iPad, etc. Technology is progressing so fast its almost hard to keep up so allowing them to explore different gadgets is the least we can do.

Brayden is only 18 months so he doesn’t have too much exposure. We allow him to play with the IPAD about 2-4 times a month. He plays educational games and I usually sit and play with him to show him how to play them. He loves to tap the screen aimlessly and he lovessss pressing that ‘home’ button. Drives me crazy!! He was exiting out of the apps every 2 seconds and I would have to keep opening the app back up for him. Even worse, he would press the button so much that it would make it so he could delete my apps.

My in-laws were over and I thought it was so cool that they had a ‘child lock’ option on their androids. I thought “why didn’t APPLE have that option?” so i did some research and found out that they do 🙂

The child lock feature allows you to lock into an app so you don’t have to worry about your child exiting the app. It also has a way to block the area where ads are located so you don’t have to worry about them hitting it and straying from the app. This works for your Ipad or your Iphone. It has made my life so much easier.

Maybe I’m just way behind but just in case I’m not the only one that didn’t know about this cool feature, i thought I would share. 🙂

Here is how the feature works:

1. Go to Settings on your iPhone or iPAD

2. Go to General, then choose Accessibility

3.In Accessibility, find the selection box titled Guided Access; turn this ON.

4.You will need to set a passcode.

5.Open an app to use the feature

Open up any app you want your child to play with. Triple click the home button and a new screen pops up that allows you to adjust the guided access for that specific app:

At the bottom of the screen, you have the option to turn hardware buttons off, turn touch on or off (I leave this on as the game needs to be able to touch around within the app) and motion on or off (I also leave this on). While in guided access, if you circle any area a grayed out box will appear, as shown in the picture above (see the little box with a small “x” on top-left corner).  This area will now become unclickable when guided access is turned on. This is a great tool to use over those annoy ads or maybe the play/pause buttons of a movie app. If you want to change this grey coverage, there is a little ‘x’ you can click to delete that selection and make a new selection. Once all your settings are the way you want them, select the blue Start button at the top-right corner and the app will resume as normal.

6. Stop the guided access feature

When your child is finished playing with that app or you want to enter a different app, you triple click your home button, but this time since guided access is turned on you have to put in your passcode.  Once you type in your passcode you can select End if you are finished, or make changes and select resume to continue with the guided access on.  After you hit end you are able to click the home button and return to your home screen.

I hope you can get as much use out of this feature as I have!

Transitioning to a Big Boy Bed

I have a tendency to jump the gun on a lot of things. When Brayden was 14 months old we transitioned him to a toddler bed. The reason we transitioned him so soon is because we wanted to get him while he’s young. We wanted to make this “his normal” before he got older and more stubborn, basically we were trying to avoid bedtime battles.

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This is how we set it up the first night. Stupid move on our part. Having it like this increased the chances of Brayden falling out of bed. We should have had one side against the wall.

He actually did great, he didn’t fight us at all. When he would wake up, he would stay in bed and cry for us until we came and got him. The problem that we had was that even though we placed one side against the wall, he was still falling out of bed twice every night. He’s a tough boy and its not a long fall but falling out of bed is a harsh way to be woken up. Not fun momma either! I was woken up twice a night to a loud thump followed by a loud cry. I never got used to hearing it, i would freak out every time. My heart would be racing making it hard to fall back asleep. I would run in there, put him back to bed and he would immediately fall back asleep. I was 9 months pregnant, not getting any sleep as is, so waking up two additional times was not working out… for me. For that reason we decided to go back to the crib.

About a month and a half later, at 16 months old, we I decided to give it another try. While Branden was at work, I dragged the toddler bed up the stairs and put it back in Brayden’s room. I left his crib in their too just in case things didn’t work out again. Its been a month and he hasn’t fallen out of the bed ANY. Not even once!!! Most nights go smoothly, he doesn’t fight, he gets in himself, kisses us good nights and lays in bed until he falls asleep. We have had an occasional issue at nap time but i can talk to him through the camera and tell him to go back to bed and he will listen. We don’t go in his room when he is fighting sleep because we don’t want him to get in the habit of crying to get us to come in the room.

Now when he wakes up, he gets out of bed and bangs on the door. no warning, no crying- just loud thumps on the door lol. Overall I feel that its safe to say that we have successfully transitioned to a big boy bed!!!!! 🙂

This is Brayden in his big boy bed, he is not really sleeping. I told him to lay in his bed so I can take a picture and this was the end result, lol.

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6 Things I’ve Discovered since Becoming a Mom of 2

We found out that I was pregnant with Brylee when Brayden was 6 months old. Brayden had just gotten over pneumonia and back to back double ear infections. Later that month he had surgery to put tubes in both of his ears. He was a crawling machine! Already making us fight him when we were changing his diaper.

My first trimester I was sooo tired and sooo sick. I was miserable but it was managable because Brayden had started sleeping 12 hours at night. He started walking at 10 months old, right around the time I started showing it started getting difficult to keep up with him since he needed so much assistance with walking and fell down a lot. It just required me to get up and down a lot. The hardest part was my third trimester i was huge and had to get up and down off the floor several times a day. I also had to get Brayden in and out of the crib, my belly was a large obstacle. Brayden kicked my stomach all the time when i was changing his diaper. He also jumped on my lap too and would slap my belly. I hated it, I was so worried he was going to hurt Brylee but he didn’t know what he was doing.

There was an infant at his daycare and he wasn’t very mindful of her. One time he tried to step on her and one time he tried covering her mouth when she was crying. When i would hold her he would throw a fit. I was so worried that he would do the same with Brylee. I thought for sure that he would throw a fit every time i would hold Brylee. That was my biggest worry. I wasn’t worried about Labor and Delivery- been there, done that. I was worried that he would cry every time I held Brylee. That would be such a nightmare.

Boy did I worry for NOTHING! Brayden loved her from the moment he saw her. The day my children met each other is by far the best day of my life. The best feeling I’ve ever felt. My heart melted when he wanted to hold her and smiled so sweetly at her. So young but already understood that she was HIS sister.

Having 2 kids is hard but nobody said it would be easy. I chose to keep Brayden at home with me while I was on maternity leave. I had the flexibility to send him to daycare if i got overwhelmed. I sent him about 1-2 days a week for the first 4ish weeks just so I could get some sleep and at the end it was so he could get some socialization, mommy was boring.

Unlike the first time where i could sleep every time he slept like every one told me to, I have to be up every 2 hours at night with Brylee and then have to get up with Brayden in the morning. The first month was hard because I was so tired. Brylee had a raw butt rash so she was constantly uncomfortable making her restless and crying even if she peed. We both had to walk away from her a couple times because we had grown so frustrated and couldn’t make her stop crying 😦  We thought for sure that she was just colic and my doctor said it could be like that for months but it was too soon to tell if she was colic at that point. We were able to clear up her rash finally, what the doctor told us to do was not working. My friend was going through the same thing with her son but he was in the hospital so they gave him medicated diaper ointment that she shared with me. Finally something worked and my baby didn’t have to suffer any more!
Taking them out in public together? Uh no thank you. I’ll stick to keeping them at home where chaos is acceptable. But every day is getting better now that Brylee is a happy baby public trips won’t be so terrifying. I have not taking them both out by myself yet, I only go out Fri- Sun when I have Branden’s help. 2 adults vs. 2 babies is still very overwhelming at times. When I go back to work I will have to get them in and out of the car by myself and that scares me. I worked with Brayden while I was pregnant on getting out of the carseat by himself. I lean back and unbuckle him and taught him to slide out and walk to my side of the car where Brylee’s carseat is. That way he can walk to me and i can grab Brylee’s carseat and go, that’s my plan  anyway. My biggest fear is going back to work – working on little sleep and rushing around with the kiddos, got to make supper, give baths, change diapers, have time to play with them- they are little time thieves.

Here are 6 things that I have discovered so far about having a second child:

  1. Your love for your second child might look different than it did for your first
    • The overwhelming love that slammed into me when we hadBrayden was unlike anything I’d ever experienced before. I naively thought it would be exactly the same way the second time around. When I didn’t immediately feel that same overwelming bond with Brylee, I felt worried and guilty for the first month. I finally realized that this time I already knew what a mother’s love was like, so it didn’t take me by surprise like it did with Brayden. Just in the short time that Brylee has been with us I have come to realize the  bond might feel different this time, but I will absolutely love my second baby as much as my first. Its just a different type of feeling,this is the best way that I can explain it.
  2. Seeing your two little ones together is a new level of incredible life moment that you could never have anticipated.
    • Seeing the automatic adoration that Brylee has for her older sibling is so amazing. I had no idea how beautifully and automatically this happened. Also, watching Brayden fill the role of big brother is awesome, too. Brayden takes so much pleasure in helping Brylee from bringing me diapers and wipes to helping me feed Brylee her bottle. Oh, and when he has a tender moment with her – like hugs and kisses – it fills us with pure, unexplainable joy.
  3. Everything seems easier the second time around.
    • It’s easier because we’ve probably already figured out our parenting philosophy and made decisions on big issues and found support groups and friends in the same situation. It’s also easier because we’ve done it before and we have an idea of what’s coming next and you have less time to overanalyze everything.
  4. All of the cliches about growing a second heart for your second child are true.
    • I will tell you the honest truth- I wondered from the moment I saw the positive pregnancy test until the last moments of labor how I could possibly love another person as much as I love Brayden. He had become the center of my world and how could I possibly have two centers? My love for him was beyond definition, and I truly believed it would be impossible to love another child as much. I can’t tell you how wrong I was, and I think it is one of life’s most amazing surprises. I really do love Brylee with the same exact intensity AND I love her in an additional, very special way. ❤
  5. You can’t help but compare and contrast.
    • I hate measuring children according to any set standard – whether it be the growth chart at the pediatrician or the baby milestones that everyone looks for. I see my two B’s as individuals and cherish every aspect of them. Still, we have many moments of deja vu with Brylee, and we can’t help but remember how things were the same or different with Brayden. These thoughts seem to naturally occur without judgment, its amazing. Regardless of the path your our babies take, we still think they are both the most perfect children in the world. I love that they are so alike yet so different!
  6. Chaos will be your normal
    • Two babies crying at the same time? no problem. I can only take care of one kid at a time. I won’t lie though…I am a huge fan of multitasking! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat on the couch, indian style, Brylee laying on my legs, one hand holding the bottle in her mouth as she chugs away and the other hand is shoveling oatmeal into Brayden’s mouth. Using my chin to hold the bottle in Brylee’s mouth to get something for Brayden has become a daily thing. Most of the time I make it work by having Brayden “help” me. Having Brayden “help” me burp her or have him bring me a diaper and wipes for her really helps him not only feel included and important but it also helps ensure that he doesn’t get jealous of Brylee for getting more attention.

Overall, being a mama to two little ones is easier and more amazing and more intense than I ever could have imagined. I am sooo glad that we chose to have another one(although, I was totally not feeling that way a month ago, lol). It’s a beautiful road, and I feel blessed to be on this journey.

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Making the leap…

I’ve had some friends ask me to write about having 2 babies- especially close together. Im going to start with how we came to the decision to have a second baby. On another day, I’ll write about post-second-baby.

Branden and I have known for a long time that we wanted a second child. I actually wouldn’t have minded 3 but branden says 2 so gotta go with the lower number and believe me two is plenty!! We also decided years ago that we wanted to have our children close together. Mainly because we wanted them to grow up together and wanted to be young parents so we can enjoy them and not be tired and be able to watch our grandkids grow up. yes, we are 23/24 yrs old and thinking about grandkids already, hahaha.

Anywho, we wanted to be responsible about bringing another child into the world. We talked about it a lot before and after Brayden. Our answer was the same- we definitely wanted another baby right away. Now we had to figure out if we could. just call me fertile myrtle so that wasn’t the issue. Im talking about career and finances.

I pretty much started planning while Brayden was still a newborn, haha.

I worked up 2 mock budgets – one with one of us staying at home and one with both of us working full-time.

The one with one of us staying at home was pretty easy. Branden and I get paid the same salary. The only difference is I have the insurance coming out of my bi-weekly paychecks. If one of us stayed home, we would still need to carry insurance so i just used my monthly salary as the amount we would be earning.

Before I could work up a mock budget with both of us working full time, I needed to figure out what we would be paying in daycare expenses for two kids. Brayden was currently at a big name daycare. They charged $205 a WEEK for just one baby. For two? Over $400 a WEEK. Whoa… Some people can afford that. I, however, cannot. I was already looking to go elsewhere, I was not comfortable sending him there for other reasons. I began looking into in home daycare, I was able to find someone that I really trusted. For two babies it would a tad bit over what i was paying for one baby at the other daycare. She was willing to take on Brayden and save a spot for Brylee. BTW, Brylee wasn’t even conceived yet. We didn’t know if we could have a another baby?? lol

Now that I found an affordable daycare for two kids, I was able to work up the budget for both of us working full-time. Taking into consideration daycare, gas to get to work, etc. We would be making quite a bit more money if i continued to work.

THANK GOD! I really wanted to continue working. I enjoyed having an adult social life, getting out of the house, and providing for my family. Plus, I know i would lose my mind if i stayed at home all day.

We knew that having another baby would come with even more sacrifices. We just decided it was worth it. Brayden having a playmate was very important to us. My family just didn’t feel complete and i wanted to complete it ASAP so baby #2 didn’t feel left out of family events that happened before she was born.

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Brylee’s Nursery

When I was pregnant with Brayden I went all out on his nursery. I bought so much stuff for his room and spent a lot of money. This time around I realized we didn’t need all that, nor could we afford it. So I just bought a couple things and called it good.

Dream big. Use kind words. Say I love you. laugh. giggle. be silly. share. say please and thank you. keep your promises. Be grateful. help others & don’t whine. Take a moment to breathe. Try new things. keep calm and carry on. Laugh out loud.

This was the one item that I splurged on. It was $60 but I really wanted it because it says exactly what i want to teach my children.

…and its super cute 🙂

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The mirror was given to me from a friend. The lamp and the basket were 70% off at Michaels. Dresser is Brayden’s. We hang almost all of his clothes so he just has plastic drawers in his closet. IMG_8130

Flowers and milk can were 70% off from Michael’s and i just wrapped some lace burlap around it for a more girly look.

IMG_6608Milk bottles and flowers were on sale at Michael’s. I used acrylic water to keep the flowers in place.  The shelves were handmade by my dad.

IMG_8134IMG_8135My twin bought me the chicklet shelf. It has turned into my shelf of sentimental items and its basically the only pink in her room. Brylee’s great grandma gave her the crown. My best friend’s mom hand-made Brylee the hat and booties. My friend made the card, i think she meant for it to be a quick note but I loved it so it is now a part of my decor lol Brylee’s baby bracelet is hanging up there, too.

IMG_9638 I handmade the chevron crib protectors. Bird picture on sale at Hobby Lobby.

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Bought this 50% at hobby lobby. It serves as a table to put her projector and humidifier on. The drawers hold her millions of headbands, socks, and hats.  Rocking chair we had from Brayden.
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Baby Items that I can’t live without!

Baby Products that I can’t live without

Can I blog about blogging? Lol. Well I am for a minute. I am having so much fun blogging and i highly recommend that you start one too. I love opening up and sharing my stories. The response that i have gotten has been overwhelming. I have received so many messages and comments with your own stories and i love it. I love hearing how my own experiences have helped you in some way. I have had almost 600 hits on my blog since i started it 3 days ago..wow!! Now with that being said I think I’m going to write a not-so serious post tonight. I am no expert on this mommy thing and i am definitly not super mom. But i would like to share things that i have found helpful, I’m not saying they will work for everybody but i would like to share what has worked for me. Maybe you haven’t heard of the product and it will help you. As most of you know my mom is not in my life( i’ll get to that in a later post) so the things that most new moms ask their moms about, I’m not able to. So most of the stuff I know I’ve learned from googling, pinterest, finding out the hard way, and of course, all of my mommy friends.IMG_6300


Here are some of my favorite items:Nursery Projector

  • Munchkin Nursery Projector- Can be purchased at amazon or walmart. 
    • It plays music to soothe your baby.  It has 6 noise options-heartbeat, ocean, white noise, rain sounds, lullabies and mozart. Brayden loved white noise when he was little now he loves lullabies. Honestly, the lullabies make me want to stab my ears drums but whatever makes him happy! Brylee likes white noise – it knocks her out almost immediately.
    • Projects on the ceiling- it has three different slides. It has bright colors and rotates so it keeps Brylee’s attention. Brayden has to have both the sound and the projector playing every night. He lays in his bed, arms behind his head, staring at the ceiling. It really keeps him calm, distracts him if he doesn’t want to go to bed,
    • and gives him something to look at while falling asleep.
    • It has a timer and will play up to 60 mins. it is also voice- activated which is great because it will turn off and Brylee will start crying and it turns back on and puts her to sleep. We turn the voice-activated option off in Brayden’s room.

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  • Gripe Water- Can be purchase at any pharmacy or Walmart.
    • It gets rid of hiccups!! Hiccups are annoying to listen to and I’m sure they are annoying for the baby. I didn’t find myself using this after the first couple months with Brayden but it is a most have for the first couple months of their life.

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  • Butt Paste- Can be purchase at Walmart or Target.
    • I found this way too late in mommy life. Baby’s rash will clear right up with this stuff and its instant relief for them! They have a yellow tube which is regular strength and red tube which is max. strength. I always get the red tube because it has 40% zinc oxide when the yellow tube only has 16% in it.

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  • Apple Cider Vinegar- Can be purchased at any grocery store.
    • Best butt rash remedy that I’ve discovered. Basically it balances the pH level of apple cider vinegar is similar to the pH level of the protective of our skin so the soak will help restore balance. I just pour some in the tub and let Brayden soak, he doesn’t even notice.

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  • Summer Infant Baby Monitor- Amazon, Babies R Us
    • Camera in each room, Split screen so I can see both my babies at the same time
    • You can scan the room so if you have a mobile baby you can see what they are doing also you can zoom.
    • Color during the day and night vision
    • Two way audio- works AMAZING, i tell Brayden to go to sleep through the monitor and he listens. If i go in his room then all bets are off. Also its a great way to communicate with your spouse if you need them to do something while in the babies room.