Month: July 2013

Tried and True: Swaddle Me!

SwaddleMe Review | oliverandtara.com

Liam sleeps best as a baby burrito – nap times, bed time, it doesn’t really matter! We’ve swaddled him since birth and he knows it mean “sleepy time”! If he’s tired, he smiles the biggest smile in the world when you begin to swaddle him. If he’s fighting sleep, you get QUITE the dirty look if you try to wrap him up. Haha! We were gifted a variety of swaddles when he was born, but the Summer Infant SwaddleMe is our favorite. Quick and brainless, perfect at 4am!

Pros:

  • Velcro! Need I say more?
  • SO quick to get them wrapped up!
  • A variety of sizes
  • Cute colors and patterns!
  • Machine washable

Cons:

  • Velcro… ug… (read below)
  • Getting legs in when they are asleep or squirming is a feat …
  • Our little Houdini can still get himself out!

As you read above, the Velcro is a pro and a con. It’s a pro because, let’s face it, in the middle of the night you don’t have any brainpower left to remember how to wrap that receiving blanket around them. The company was even kind enough to make washing tabs, so the Velcro doesn’t get wonky in the wash! It’s STRONG Velcro too, it doesn’t just pop open, it takes a good tug to undo! But it’s a con for one reason alone – loudness. Invariably it gets stuck closed when you need to slide a sleeping babe in, and ripping it open could wake the dead. Also, Liam has discovered the joy of “scratching”. He love to scratch things. This includes the Velcro. In the middle of the night. Yep.

Our Houdini is able to get his arms out when he is awake and wants free. Although a con, I really don’t mind. I know that he could get out if he needed, and he never gets out while asleep and then wakes himself up. It’s created some hilarious moments, as well as magical.

One night I woke up to the sound of things crashing. Liam had gotten his arms out of his swaddle and was clearing off my end table, one item at a time. Some things he was even able to fit between the bars and place in bed with him. I think my middle of the night exclamation was something along the lines of “You’ve GOT to be kidding me!” as I leapt from bed, just as the Angelcare Monitor hit the ground.

The other morning I rolled over in bed to see his arm out of the swaddle, reaching for me from inside his crib. He was staring right at me, straining his arm between the bars, not making a sound. My heart melted. I reached my hand off the side of my bed towards him and he grasped it, smiling at me.

A funny little video I shot the other day, showing how much better he falls asleep/stays asleep when swaddled. Heck, this very post is brought to you by a nap in his SwaddleMe!

Did your little one like to be swaddled?

❤ Tara

Happy 6 Months!

IMG_20130714_195133

 

Dear Baby Liam

You are 6 months old today. I can’t believe it’s been half a year since the day we met you. We waited so very long for you, the whole day was surreal. I still remember the little things about that day. The music playing in the OR. Daddy’s smile. The look on Papa’s face when we told him your name. Mommy’s friends taking turns holding you. Since then there have been so many wonderful firsts for both of us. The first time you latched, smiled, laughed, reached for me, slept through the night… rolled over, sat up, woke daddy up by tapping him.  Just this past week we went to a library lapsit. As I sat on the rug, singing and listening to stories with you, I looked around at the other moms and started to cry. At one time, I had convinced myself I would never be able to attend something like this. But there I was, being a “mommy”. At the end of the song and story time we sat, chatting with other mommies and babies. I was even given my first mommy playdate card.

Each night, as you sleep in your bed, I say a prayer for you. As each of these firsts happen, I find my prayers get longer. I find I have to add a new item. When you were first born I prayed against SIDS. Then I began praying for physical, emotional and mental health. Soon I added your wife, your developmental milestones … all along always praying that daddy and I will be the parents you deserve, and that we can raise you to be an amazing man of God.

I’ve documented so much of your life. I’m sure I’m driving people crazy by filling up their social media feeds. But it’s just too much joy to keep to myself. To keep bottled up. You are such a blessing, and you bring so much joy to so many people. You are loved, prayed for, kissed and snuggled by so many. Daddy used this “snap happiness” to create a very special gift for us.

For the past few weeks, daddy has been working VERY late. Tonight, when I got home, daddy sat me down. I was afraid he was going to tell me some bad news. He turned his computer towards me, and showed me this…. I cried…

(thank you Uncle Ryan for helping daddy!)

Happy half birthday little man. Happy happy birthday. You didn’t get a cake tonight, but instead some water from your new cup and your current favorite – avocado!

 

❤ Tara

Fear Is A Thought…

Fear is a thought | http://www.oliverandtara.com/fear-is-a-thought/

A friend liked this on fb today, so it popped up into my feed. And stopped me dead in my tracks. And trust me, that’s impressive. Because I’m moving FAST today trying to get things done! Why did it stop me?

Fear stole so much from me. Joy. Opportunities. Hope. Options. Learning to deal with it has opened so many doors. A private practice. Patience. A big move. Hope. Joy. Liam!

For the longest time, my fear was never having a child… infertility planted the seed of fear for me. Not but I’m not ashamed any longer! And I’m learning every day how to deal with my fearful thoughts! Oh, none of this is EVER easy… my gosh, overcoming fear is harder for me than figuring out how to be a mom has been! It’s an uphill battle against my sinful heart and flesh. What’s hardest is its sneaky…. it gets into your head and heart when you aren’t looking and all of the sudden you are drowning in it!

What do you fear? Sometimes just making it public helps release some of it. I promise not to laugh.

❤ Tara

Tried and True: [Apron Style] Nursing Covers

*”Tried and True” will be an on going thread where I will be reviewing the products we have tried out in our lives as parents!*

Nursing Covers Review at OliverandTara.com

Let me begin with a small disclaimer. If you nurse in public, ok! If you don’t like nursing in public, ok! If you prefer to be covered while nursing, ok! If you don’t prefer to be covered while nursing, ok! Get my drift? Whatever is comfortable for you, works! I don’t care where I am while nursing, but I prefer to be covered. I’m just that way naturally – I’m not comfortable in bikinis, spaghetti strap tank tops, etc. Again, nothing wrong with all of those. I’m just not comfortable! So, I do what is comfortable for me, and encourage you to do what’s comfortable for you!

That all being said, I *love” my nursing covers. Nursing covers come in many styles. Shawls, scarves, sleeved, wraps … I’m slowly adding to my collection and trying many out. But currently I have 3 “Apron style” covers, and I am never anywhere without at least one of them. The funniest part is that second I pull one out, Liam gets *really* excited. He knows what they mean!

What I love about Apron Style Nursing Covers:

  • Rigid neckline – peek in on baby and see when learning to “latch”
  • Hang around your neck because, trust me, it is impossible to keep a blanket up. Especially when they get more active! (Liam now loves to hang on the rigid neckline… I’d be totally exposed if it was just a blanket!)
  • Protects the baby from the elements. And your… um… err… “goods” are protected as well! It gets “nippy” out there!
  • Great as a “sun shade” when babywearing too!

My stash…

Simple By Au Lait
Simple By Au Lait

Features:

  • 100% Linen – breathes yet doesn’t “feel” thin and certainly not see through
  • Organic – because babies chew on everything.
  • Little “pockets” in the corners – great for hiding your nipple pads!
  • One pocket is terry cloth – great for wiping up spillage and dribble!
  • Available on Amazon
  • Rating: ✰✰✰✰ 4/5 Stars

 

The Peanut Shell
The Peanut Shell

Features:

  • Part of a line – I have matching burp clothes and diaper pouch
  • Pockets in the corners for those nursing pads
  • Pockets are made from soft cotton for wiping precious chins
  • Thick cotton, keeps baby warm out in the elements!
  • Available on Amazon
  • Rating: ✰✰✰✰ 4/5 Stars

 

Udder Cover
Udder Cover

 Features:

  • Really thin – extremely light and breathable
  • Folds up very small
  • Available using the codes at the bottom of this post
  • Available on Amazon
  • Rating: ✰✰✰ 3/5 Stars

 

Summary

My Simple and Peanut Shell covers are by far my favorites. I really love them, even if they are a bit bulkier to carry around. The Udder Cover, although smaller, is really quite thin and the neck strap slips loose a lot. What I love about all of them is that most of the time, people just think I am covering a sleeping baby (though yes, some people do know what I am doing…). I’ve even had a client’s dad peek down the cover before, thinking Liam was napping … aawwwkkkwwwaaarrrddd. BUT, it means people aren’t gawking. And I am comfortable walking around, feeding my blessing, without baring skin. Just the way I like it!

Overall Rating: ✰✰✰✰ 4/5 Stars

And they have some other fun uses too …

Hubby sun shade ...
Hubby sun shade …

 

Dress up items for my adorable niece ...
Dress up items for my adorable niece …

 

As your Supermom cape because, let's face it, you are one!
As your Supermom cape because, let’s face it, you are one!

❤ Tara