and do you know that so many people are preggers right now? 3 of my sweet cousins, and 2 bffs, and 2 of my cute past roomates ,both of which always have the best tans and hair, and maybe you who are reading this? and i'm super jealous, of course, because that is my job in life, being jealous of those who are going to get to be pregnant right now and give birth before i do again! oh, the life of you. but you know, there are some things about being pregnant that i feel like i got a pretty good grip on. and here are some notes about it:
1. register for everything under the sun. mostly at places like target or walmart where you can register for things OTHER than baby stuff (cause really, you don't need all that much to take care of the little dudes) such as clothes and stacks and home storage and furniture and whatever else your heart desires. cause you get a discount on EVERYTHING on your registry! Wheat thins? Check. Dr. Pepper for milk production? Check. Nursing bras that make you go ooooh? Check and check. candy cause once he's born that's all you'll want to eat? add that too! nobody told me this till it was waaay too late and i couldn't add more stuff on account of the discount only works for stuff on your registry RIGHT NOW!
2. speaking of the discount... change the due date you put on that there registry to a month BEFORE you are due. then you get that handy dandy discount and you can shop for the stuff you need before the baby comes (trust me, walking in the 2 weeks after baby debuts is not something you want to do much of) and after your shower when you get all the goodies that you love (but trust me, aren't on your registry. we got super cool gifts, and had 2 fun showers, but only got one thing that we registered for).
3. things you really don't need... bottle sanitizing anything- dishwasher. wipe warmers- they dry up wipes pronto. diaper genies- refills are expensive and they are a pain to empty- we bought vanilla scented trashbags and a small can for the baby's room- and just throw out diapers with the trash, which is often. a diaper bag- i searched high and low for one i wanted and could afford. and i don't even use it. especially nursing, at this point all i need is a diaper or two and a small pack of wipes, which are fine in my purse and way easier to carry. a stockpile of diapers right away- i wish we hadn't bought huge boxes of huggies and kirklands diapers from costco... cause i hate huggies. so i've either had to exchange or grin and bear it. if i could do it over, i'd buy gift cards to places that sell bulk diapers- diapers.com, costco, walmart, whatever. and then see what i like and buy them AFTER baby is born. you leave the hospital with plenty of diapers (if you are smarties like us and hide the pack in your room after using one or two diapers, and then ask for another, repeat repeat repeat till you have a nice stockpile- it'll last you a bit) and bonus, add diapers to your registry and get them at 10% off! (diapers.com is a great place to get discounted diapers too- i think they do 30% off your diapers for your first 3 months of memberhip- which is free).
4. things you really do need... different kinds of pacifiers. the hospital will give you a few soothies. i don't know many babies who like them long. ellis takes nuks, kinda. i hear mams are great. basically, register for one set of each, and then see what baby likes, if any. a moby wrap or ergo type carrier. i made my own moby wrap for half the price- all it is is a 6 yard long piece of stretchy fabric, and mine works perfectly plus you get 2 since bolts of fabric are folded in half width wise. we use this thing all the time, and especially in the beginning, Ellis loved to be in the wrap against us and would sleep and sleep and sleep (perfect if you need to do some housework). I traveled from Texas to Iowa with him in it the whole time through the airports and planes- he slept the entire time. an ergo won't kill your back, they are awesome and go on sale half price every couple of months on babysteals.com (we got ours there for $57). also, swaddling stuff. we swaddled till about a month then ellis was breaking out of every blanket but woke himself up if he wasn't swaddled... enter the swaddlepod- genious! babylegs! we love babylegs! they are little leg warmers and Ellis wears them most days- no pants on and off during diaper changes, plus, i think they are just too cute. they also go on sale often on babysteals.com. a wubanub. sounds ridiculous, but if your babe is like mine and pops that paci out of his mouth every 2 seconds (really not fun when you are trying to get him to sleep, or in the car when you're driving and he's screaming) this thing will weight it down a little and it's something for him to hold onto. they are about 15 smackers online, so i made my own- have an old beanie baby around? just break off the paci "handle" and sew a few rounds of thread through the paci hole onto the mouth of the beanie baby- works perfect!
5. something i didn't know about till way too late: Babies R Us does this great trade-in event probably twice a year (you could call and ask when) where you bring in an old carseat/crib/other big ticket item and get 25% off a new one! so you could go dig a free old carseat off craigslist, or a friend, or pay $10 for one at a garage sale, and trade it in for the discount (which can be a lot when, like us, your carseat is $190 or your crib is a couple hundred). maybe your mom has your old drop-side crib (which are like, banned now) and you want a sparkly new thang for your baby, go for it! i so wish i'd known about this...
6. best thing i ever did, after Ellis was about a month old: move him to his own crib/room. we had him in a bassinet next to the bed till then and we were feeding every 2 hours. well that gets old pretty fast, and after a month i felt like he would be ok to go longer stretches without eating so we sent him packing. the first night, he slept 5 hours, ate and then another 4 hours. it. was. awesome. turns out i was getting him up to feed him when he really didn't need to feed. babies make a ton of little noises and movements in their sleep, and i was picking him up at every one, thinking he was waking hungry. wrong. when he was in the other room, i only heard him when he really was waking up hungry and crying, not all the little junk in between. after a month of sleeping in his own crib, he'd gone up to 9 hours sleeping a night (then wakes up to eat and usually sleeps another 2 or 3 hours in his swing). sleeping through the night i think would happen faster for people if their babies weren't so close to them at night... just a guess though.
7. also, you get tons of samples when you are pregnant- including lots of formula and formula coupons. we got 2 full cans and some bottles of liquid formula, and while i breastfeed exclusively, they are great for our food storage, in case of emergency or even if a friend is over and runs out of formula, or if for some reason Ellis has to start supplimenting or switch to formula all the way. you get lots and lots of coupons, so save them up and use them during sales, like BRU sales when they do $5 giftcards when you buy formula, etc, and start saving up those for other purchases!!
whew, that's a lot of info, and there's way more of it every which way on the internet. i'm super happy for all you pregnant ladies, and i love talking pregnancy and birth and now motherhood, if anyone ever wants to chat!
Happy Cinco De Mayo folks!!! Ellis and I are about to start making our Mexican dinner- PW's tequila lime chicken, mexican rice, black beans, mexican soda, and Pandora's Cinco De Mayo party station!