Saturday, November 22, 2014

Aelah Grace: 1 Month

An entire month (plus a few days) has gone by since the birth of our precious miracle!  I can't even believe it!  When everyone tells you how time flies, they really, really mean it.  I want to rewind and go back to the hospital so that I can treasure each moment again, relive every single second, write it all down so I can soak it all up at a later date.  She will never be that tiny again.  Her skin will never be quite that soft.  And her eyes...they change 




Ah...but enough of that for now.  For now, I must take joy in every little thing she does.  Live in the moment.  

I am a few days behind with this post but I wanted to wait until after our first well-child visit to see just how much our Aelah Grace has grown!

This basket may not work for as long as I had hoped...  ;)

How am I growing?

Aelah weighed in at 9 lbs and 12 oz yesterday!  She has almost gained 2 lbs since birth...just one ounce away!  :)  Her weight is pretty average, 50th percentile.  But her length, that is an entirely different story!!  At 23 inches (and I'm fairly sure they measured a little short with all of her squirming) she is in the 95th percentile!  We have one tall little lady on our hands!  But that isn't a surprise since Hubby and I are both fairly tall.

What's new?

The first month outside the womb has been an interesting one.  We went from smiling in our sleep the first week or so to smiling when she is awake!  And laughing in her sleep.  Which is one of Mommy's favorite things!  :)  If she is being held, she will lift her head and look around for as long as she can.  Lights can be VERY distracting - even when she is eating.  haha.  

How are we sleeping?

Sleep the first few weeks wasn't too bad - up every 2-4 hours to eat.  Then somewhere between that 3 and 4 week period she decided she was going to be a night owl.  She LOVES to be awake anytime from 9pm - 2am for at least 3 hours.  And she usually isn't very happy that Mommy and Daddy want her to sleep.  So, we have started sleep training.  A bit early, yes, but a must if I am going to survive.  

And by sleep training, I just mean having a nap/bed time routine.  When Aelah starts to get sleepy we go read a story, sit quietly for a bit, swaddle her up, and lay her in the bassinet before she falls asleep.  During the day she wakes to eat every 3 hours and we follow the Eat/Wake/Sleep pattern.  Lots of lights and brightness from 7am until about 7:30 and then we dim the lights.  At this point we don't worry much about noise because we want her to be able to sleep through "the static" so to speak.  But if it comes to it, we will try to be more quiet in the evenings.  We've been trying this for 3 days and 2 of those 3 nights have been splendid!  Asleep by 9-9:30 and up around 7, waking every 3-5 hours to eat.  The night it didn't work we had gone grocery shopping and she took an extra long nap which messed things up I think.  

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Baby Stuff: Dear Husband

I wrote this a few days before my due date and planned to give it to Hubby the night our baby girl was born.  I actually forgot about it in all of the excitement but gave it to him at some point the next day.  ;)

I wrote this letter to show my husband that our marriage was still and will be a priority in my life.  Yes, we have started another chapter, but adding a member to our family will not change the way I feel about him!  

Dear Hubby,

Today will forever change our lives.  Today our Baby Girl was born!  I still can't believe we are parents!  Us....parents....even though this is something I've wanted since the day we said "I do," it still terrifies me.  We are officially responsible for another human being.  Ah!

Anyways, that all isn't the point of this letter.  There are actually two things I desperately want you to know.  And never forget.

First, you are going to be an amazing father.  And I mean that with all of my heart.  I have no doubt our little girl is going to have you wrapped around her finger.  I know you will want to give her the world.  I love that!  I also know that you are going to teach her how she should be treated as a woman as well as how to ride a bike.  You will dread her first crush, her first date, and the day you walk her down the aisle.  And because she knows how much you love and walk with the Lord we will be able to trust her decisions when it comes to guys anyways.  But when they break her heart, because they will, I know your shoulder will be there for her to cry on every time.  I also know I'll have to convince you to not strangle those boys, no matter how truly terrible they might be.  I hope you know how much I believe in you when it comes to this 'dad thing.'  You are going to be amazing!

On another note, I know that a baby, now matter how precious she may be, will change our relationship.  And while I am pretty sad that our 'just the two of us' chapter has come to a close, I know our marriage is strong enough to weather any change - no matter how small or how big.  ;)

I want you to know how much I truly love you - with all of my heart.  

I am going to do my best to always put you first.  You deserve it.  Our family deserves it.  You might need to remind me from time to time.  And while I may get mad at first, I will eventually remember you are right.  Every day I will strive to love you more.  Then someday, far from now, when we're empty nesters, we will be even more in love than today.  I know that watching you be a dad will make that easy.  But I want to be more intentional about 'dating' and keeping that spark alive because you are so worth it!  I never want to lose what we have - our affection, our silliness, and our willingness to follow where the Lord leads.  At this point in our marriage I am so proud of us, so proud of you!

I am so excited for our future.  I can't wait to watch our Baby Girl grow and change every day.  I can't wait to see how we grow as a family.  God is before us so we cannot fail!  Here's to another chapter on our journey - the start of a new adventure!

I love you!!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Aelah Grace: What's in a Name?

Naming a child may be one of the most difficult decisions people ever have to make.  Do you want the name to be original?  But not weird.  Or maybe you want a family name?  But can it be turned into a horrible nickname?  Do you want the babies name to be able to be shortened?  Or maybe you aren't a fan of nicknames.  What about meaning?  Do you want a name of significance or does it not matter?  And then you find a name you like but your spouse absolutely hates it.  Or at least isn't sold on it...

As I'm sure many other women have done - I had a list of names I loved long before we got pregnant or even started trying.  However, unlike most, I had an actual list on my computer.  Yep...I may be a little crazy.  Over the past few years, if I heard something I liked, I would add it to the list and find out the definition or basic meaning.  Hubby knew of my list - and, justifiably, thought I was a bit nuts.  

Once we found out we were expecting I pulled out my list and we looked it over.  He quickly eliminated probably 75% of the names I had written.  Throughout the coming months we added a couple of others and then narrowed it down to two boy names and two girl names.  And after discovering that we were expecting a beautiful little girl, it was on!

And the winner is....

Aelah Grace Sherman.

Grace was Hubby's grandma's name.  He fought hard for Grace to be a first name.  But I had my qualms and we finally agreed on using it for a middle name.

So where did we get Aelah?  Elah is the Hebrew word for "oak or terebinth tree."  We added the "a" to help with pronunciation so she wouldn't get "Ella."  It has helped a bit but, as with anything different, pronunciation has been a bit difficult.  To clear things up - it is a long a sound - so it is prounounced "A La"  We debated whether or not to spell it simply "ala" but I desperately wanted to keep the original Hebrew.  Spelling took us longer than picking a name I think.  ;)

But anyways, back to the meaning.  We loved that 'Aelah' brought together the passions of Hubby and I.  Hubby, simply put, is a landscaper and has a sincere passion for all plant life - especially trees.  I love to study the word of God, especially the original Hebrew and Greek.  Neat, right?

Bur the significance doesn't end there.  When we were still debating names, we decided to look a little more into meaning.  It was then that I stumbled across this blog post from The Road Less Traveled.  To briefly summarize - the terebinth and oak trees both have a lot of Biblical significance.  First, the Valley of Terebinth is where David defeated Goliath.  Which is pretty awesome.  But the thing I love most is that these trees, because of their strength and long lives, Biblically signify a place of belonging, a place where God is, a place where you meet with God.  

Beautiful isn't it?

Once we read those words, we were both sold.  Our baby girl's name would be Aelah.  I can't wait to one day share the meaning of her name with her.  And I hope she thinks it is as beautiful as we do.

You really should go here and read the full post that we stumbled across.  She really did her research and there is SO much that I left out for the sake of simplicity.  ;)

How did you choose your little ones name(s)?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Baby Stuff: Our Birth Story

Can I first say that it is super surreal to be writing a birth story?  I have read so many and dreamed of the day I would write my own.  And now I am beyond thrilled to be doing so!  

Aelah Grace was born on Sunday, October 19th at 11:27 a.m.  She was 7 lbs 13 oz and 22.5 inches long.  

Saturday, the morning of the 18th, I started the day as usual with the addition of eating a half of a fresh pineapple with my breakfast (apparently it contains an enzyme called bromelain that softens the cervix and causes muscles to contract...since we were trying to avoid induction, it sounded like a good idea.  Plus, it worked for a friend of ours so it was worth a shot).  The other half of the pineapple, I began to snack on throughout the day.  Just a note - eating a whole pineapple in one day makes for a very sore mouth.  haha.  But by 5:30 that evening my contractions were consistently 10 minutes apart.   By 11 that night they were only 5 minutes apart.  I told hubby I was going to jump in the shower to see if things would continue.  After I got out contractions slowed to almost 15 minutes apart.  I was a little disheartened.  I thought for sure we were about to have a baby.

But then....I woke around 2 a.m. to intense contractions that were only two and a half minutes apart.  Before we rushed off to the hospital I decided to walk around, rock in the rocking chair, etc. - just to be sure.  By 3 contractions were still consistently 2-3 minutes apart and getting stronger.  We grabbed our stuff and out the door we went.

After my initial exam, I was only 2 cm dilated.  And they were charting contractions at 2-4 minutes apart.  The on call doctor suggested walking for an hour and then returning for another exam.  So off to Walmart we went at about 4:30 in the morning....

This worked out well because I was able to eat a small snack!  I had intended to grab something when we left the house but in the excitement (and nervousness) I completely forgot.  And Hubby was able to get in a good breakfast.  We got a few odd looks as we walked  around Walmart, especially when I would stop, slump against Hubby for the worst of the contraction and then bend in half so he could rub my back.  I'm sure we were quite the sight!  As we headed back to the hospital I was sure they would send us home.  Contractions were back to 5 minutes apart.  Maybe this wasn't it after all....

But I had dilated another centimeter!  Yay!  Officially admitted around 6 a.m.  I was a bit worried that we weren't further along since I had wanted to labor at home for as long as possible to avoid intervention.  All I could see was 12 hours of laboring at the hospital and them wanting to induce just because things weren't progressing "fast enough." But we were here.  And it was happening.  

And then they took us to one of the "nice" rooms.  We would labor, deliver, recover, AND stay in one room!  I had been hoping and praying for one of only two of these rooms since we had taken the hospital tour.  It may have been a little thing - but I was SUPER excited about this!  Especially because it helped me relax and find comfort when I would have been a bit disappointed otherwise.

Labor was relatively smooth.  I did have a lot of back labor but Hubby was right there to rub whenever I asked.  The Bradley methods we had studied were extremely helpful.  When I remembered to breath the right way and to completely relax I really noticed a difference.  And I mean really.  I noticed at one point that I kept clenching my butt muscles and my upper thighs because of my back pain.  When I could consciously avoid that it hurt much less.  But it was extremely difficult to focus on not tensing.

By 9 there hadn't been any more change.  Because of this, when the doctor came just a little while later, he first respectfully recognized the fact that I wanted an intervention free delivery.  Since he was the only doctor at the hospital that doesn't work at the practice I go to, it was refreshing to hear him respect my wishes.  At this point, because of no progress, he mentioned that we could add pitocin but also gave me the option of going back home.  

I was a little broken.  I couldn't fathom the idea of going home.  My contractions weren't super close together but they were very strong.  I was losing heart.  The idea of getting in a car was unbearable, I could barely get through the pain as it was.  And the drive to the hospital when my contractions were probably half as bad was pretty miserable.  As my brain went 1 million directions I was able to stay calm enough to reiterate my desire to avoid drugs and asked if they could, instead, break my water.

Apparently my cervix was a bit posterior which would make the procedure extremely difficult if not impossible.  But the doctor agreed to check and see before we made any final decisions.  Thankfully, he did, because my cervix, though not dilated any further, was now in line with where it needed to be.  So he broke my water.    

That was an experience that was nothing like I imagined.  Talk about a gush!  And I felt like it was never going to stop.  But things were happening!

By the time the doctor was done 'doing his thing' down there...which was only a matter of minutes, we had gone from 3 cm to 7 cm!  Things were going fast now!  I was also shaking unbearably and couldn't control it.  Apparently I had entered the transition phase of labor - which was also a good sign!

Since my contractions were mostly in my back, they assumed Baby Girl was lying posterior - sunny side up.  ;)  Because of this they suggested laboring on my hands and knees.  This wasn't in our original plan - but, it helped take the pressure off of my back AND it helped me focus on my breathing.  Which progressively got worse....I was having such a hard time focusing on everything at once.  So, unfortunately, my breathing was struggling.

My mom and Hubby both swear that according to the monitors my contractions weren't as strong after they broke my water.  But for me they felt worse.  I think it was because they were coming much closer together and I didn't have enough time to refocus between.  The few things that kept me going:

1. The knowledge that it was too late for meds.  ;)

2. My awesome coaches (Hubby and Mom) - they never let me down and were always there to help me through whatever I needed.

3. My mom kept praying.  And I kept chanting Philippians 4:13 in my head - "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."

Before long, I knew I had to push.  I had thought so previously but when the nurse checked I wasn't quite there.  So it took her awhile to come check the second time.  But she did.  And she told us we were ready to have a baby!!

The next 20 minutes were the hardest part of the whole process.  My body was telling me PUSH!  And everyone else kept telling me to wait for the doctor.  It...was...agonizing.  Probably the worst pain I have ever experienced.  Contractions are bad enough but when you are literally fighting everything your body is trying to do, it magnifies that pain...apparently times 1000.  This entire time, Hubby and Mom kept having to remind me to breath properly - slowly - in through my nose, out through my mouth.  I was taking quick, shallow breaths instead.

After what felt like eternity, the doctor and his "sterile field" were finally ready.  At 11 a.m. on Sunday the 19th, it was time to push.  I had lost a lot of energy and the first couple of pushing contractions were not very productive.  It was also during this time that I agreed to an episiotomy.  This is the one thing I truly regret...but we'll get to that later.  Two more pushing contractions and the episiotomy was complete.  Somewhere along the way they had to give me oxygen.  I couldn't get my breathing under control and apparently started hyperventilating.  The only thing I was aware of was that I couldn't feel my hands.  Yikes!  The oxygen definitely helped...almost immediately and I was able to focus a lot better.  

It was then I realized the nurse telling me to push through the burn.  I had no idea what she was talking about.  There was no burn!  But then it clicked - "Oh my word, she must be crowning!  The nurse is talking about the infamous 'ring of fire.'"  So, with my next push I gave it everything I had.  I was ready to see my Baby Girl.  And apparently, she was ready to see me because she came all at once - head, shoulders, knees, and toes!  I was done!  27 minutes from the time I started pushing, she was here!!  Not too bad for a first time mom! ;)  

As I took her in my arms I could hardly believe it.  I was reveling in the skin-to-skin I had so desperately wanted.  She was beautiful.  I was trying to get her to nurse but she was so slippy and so not just wasn't going to happen.  hehe.  I eventually let the nurses take her to clean her off and weigh, measure, etc.  Her little cries broke my heart...

It was then I was able to take everything else in - apparently because of her abrupt appearance, I ended up with a 3rd degree tear.  Ouch!  It took almost a half an hour for the doc to stitch me up - the whole time Hubby still had to remind me to keep breathing the right way.  I remembered at this point why I hadn't wanted an episiotomy - it could mean a worse tear then if I tore naturally.  In fact, it is really rare for 3rd or 4th degree tears to happen without episitomies.  However, it could have been much worse and I am so very thankful it wasn't.  But the 'what if' bothers me.  What if I hadn't gotten the episiotomy?  Would it have been as bad?  In reality, this is a small 'what if.'  I will heal.  And I will forget the pain of those stitches.  No big deal.

Over all, I am beyond happy with our birth experience.  True, it wasn't exactly what I had envisioned.  I would have preferred to remember to breath, to not have back labor, and to not have any interventions whatsoever.  But it was an experience that is uniquely ours.  And the most important part, the safety and health of our Baby Girl, was successful!!  

I will always treasure the memories of my Hubby as my coach.  He rocked it!  Even when I wanted to punch him in the face for saying "in through the nose, out through the mouth" for the hundredth time.  He was calm and collected and never left my side for a minute.  

And the moment I saw Aelah's precious little face and heard her tiny little cry will forever and always be one of my very favorite moments.  In an instant, all of the pain was forgotten.  I can still hardly believe she is here.  It is still so very unreal.  :) 

So precious

Look at those chunky little cheeks...they have already shrunk a little.  :(

This may be my favorite picture - she is just so snuggly!

Snuggling with Daddy!

Our trip home.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Baby Stuff: Gender Reveal Party (FREE Printables)

So our gender reveal was about 5 months ago.  I've been meaning to write this post since that week but life is just full of surprises - especially when preparing for a baby.  ;)

I have this thing about pink - not a big fan.  So when we started planning our party I knew I didn't want the typical blue & pink.  So to Pinterest I went.  Don't you just love the ease of finding a million ideas in one place?  It's like stepping into a meeting where everyone is trying to talk at once and you can't take any one thing in completely.  But I was determined.  And after some searching, instead of blue & pink, I settled on mustaches and lips!

After looking at wording for probably close to 100 different gender reveal invites, I blended a few together and created my own.  This is the finished product (personal info covered):

I am a perfectionist so putting this all together took a bit longer than it probably should have.  ;)

We had the party outside and we were on a very tight budget so I kept our decor to a minimum and included things we already had around the house.

I had the "Love" piece hanging in our apartment before we moved - glad I remembered it for the party!  It was perfect!
Basically, everything decor wise was set up at or around this table.  I found the printable for the mustache and lip photo props here (thank you Pinterest).  I only had popsicle sticks so that's what we used, but you could definitely do something different....

At the table, there was a place for everyone to vote on what they thought Baby Sherman was going to be:

Please excuse my horrible handwriting.  I have tried for years to change it but to no avail.  :P

And then we had a place for everyone to write name suggestions.  We pretty much had it narrowed down to two girls names and two boys names at this point.  But everyone loved putting their two cents in - and some people really had fun with it!  ;)

The chalkboard clips were leftover from my parents anniversary party and I had the red, black, and white notepad.  And of course, I only picked out our red and black pens.  ;)

Then we hung some of the old wives tales as well as our ultrasound pics on the tree above the table.  It was really amusing how many people consulted the wives tales before casting their vote!  ;)

Yes, I did break down and spend a little to buy some chalkboard paper at Micheals.  BUT, I did have a 50% off coupon!  ;)

We have SO many more pics now.  Even got one of her sticking out her tongue!  ;)

The cake was a surprise - but we only got a small one.  So I made cupcakes and DIY'ed some cupcake toppers with PicMonkey.  For this FREE PRINTABLE just right click the second image below and save as.  You should be able to print as an 8x10 from there.

You can do the toppers front and back but I chose to do one-sided because of time issues.  ;)

Right Click and Save As - Enjoy!

And here is the cake reveal.  For those that don't know how this works.  We got a sealed envelope from our ultrasound tech with a picture that revealed the gender.  I took that envelope (unopened to our baker.  If you are local we got it from Cake Shotts.  I simply gave her the invitation as well as the ultrasound pic and this is what she came up with.  We absolutely LOVED it!  She dyed the inside pink or blue depending on what the ultrasound picture revealed.  :)  That way, when we cut the cake everyone would find out at the same time if we were having a boy or girl.

Just darling isn't it??

Let me tell you....we set the time for the reveal 45 minutes after the start of the party.  And it came FAST.  If I could do it again, I would probably make it an hour.  I felt like everyone had just arrived and I was rushing inside to grab the cake.  That extra 15 minutes would have been really nice.

Here we come with the cake!!  It is so funny to me that I thought I looked pregnant that day.....

Cutting the cake was so exciting!  I was SO nervous.  Would it be pink?  Would it be blue?  I knew we wouldn't be disappointed either way - we are so tremendously happy just to be having a baby!  I just had these crazy butterflies.  It was fun!  Hubby and I decided to cut it together:

I peeked inside and said quite loudly.....

"It's Pink!!"  hehe.  Baby Girl was officially announced!  My mom's reaction might be my favorite:  

And I love the expression on Hubby's face....
 While I was overjoyed in that instant, I think it took a little bit for it to all sink in....Hubby had to cut a whole piece out before I really responded:

And there it is.... We're having a little girl!!

We are SO thrilled to be bringing a precious little lady into this world.  And we cannot wait to meet her!  I hope you enjoyed perusing our day.  

I am always anxious to hear from my  Did you have a gender reveal party?  Did you already know and keep it a secret?  Or were your surprised as well?  How did you reveal?  Let me know in the comments below!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Bump Update: 40 Weeks

Unreal.  I never ever thought I'd be writing this bump update.  Thought for sure our Little Sprout would come before now.  But she is being so stubborn.  Just like her Daddy.  ;)  

We haven't made any more progress since a little over two weeks ago - still 1 cm dilated and 80% effaced.  The PA was a little shocked I was there this week, apparently he was pretty sure I would have this baby over the weekend.  But I didn't....  We kind of started talking about induction since we've reached my due date.  But as long as she and I are doing okay, we will try to postpone it as long as we can..  Especially since we got pregnant, when we weren't trying, the first cycle after our miscarriage.  I'm highly irregular anyways and I know I don't ovulate in the typical window that most women do.  So there is a very good likelihood that my due date is inaccurate.  We shall see.  Just so long as she is safe and healthy, we are happy!  :)

Picture time!

Not sure if it is the clothes or the way my hands were sitting but I feel like my belly looks so small in this pic...

But then again....maybe not.  lol.

Bigger???  I didn't measure any bigger at my doc appointment this week....but I think I can see a difference....

Amazing the difference 10 weeks makes!!  Seriously.  Whoa!

This week, baby is as big as: A small pumpkin!  Pretty appropriate for the time of year.  But not very comforting to a Momma preparing for labor.  ;)

Next appointment: I have a Bio-Physical Profile and a Nonstress Test tomorrow and Monday morning. And then an appointment Monday afternoon.  

Total Weight Gain/Loss: At my appointment on Tuesday I had gained 2 lbs since Thursday.  Guess I need to lay off those EL Fudge cookies.  ;)

Exercise: Really should be better about this.  I've really slacked off with not having a "schedule."  And maybe if I get some more walking time in this little lady will decide to join us!  

Maternity Clothes: I've managed to get away with sweats and a t-shirt at home - though my belly does stick out a little.  It's just much more comfortable than an elastic band somewhere mid-belly.  :P 

Sleep: Pretty good for the most part.  I've been letting myself wake up on my own time (instead of an alarm) lately since I know I need to rest and it has been about an hour or so after my usual wake up time.  Which drives me crazy.  haha.  But I know rest is best at this point.

Food Cravings/Aversions: Nothing.   

Movement: She'll have days where she is pretty calm and then there are the days she is super active.  Some days it is fun for me and other days just a little painful.  I think her daddy got to feel her more than ever the past few days.  Sunday he was playing with her foot (or knee) on my side and kept laughing.  And then Monday night he was laying his hand on my belly and she just kept moving everywhere.  He loves it!  And I absolutely love those moments.     

What I Miss: Thinking this little lady was going to come early.  Ha!

What I'm Loving: As noted just a moment ago - Hubby being able to bond with Baby Girl a bit more.  He is so ready for her to be here.  He keeps telling her it's time to come out so he can see her.  Super sweet.
What I'm Looking Forward To: Getting to see her soon!  And the Bio Physical Profile should be at least a little interesting tomorrow since it is basically a really long ultrasound. Not looking forward to the Non Stress Test though....  

Best Moment This Week: .Hubby getting to feel Baby Girl so much.

Milestones: Everything is good to go!  She is just busy gaining more pudge to keep her warm.  ;)

Goals:  Finished my thank you cards!  Just have a few addresses to get so I can send the last few out.  And I think we might actually get to hang pics in Baby Girl's room sometime over the next few days.  Since it is rainy Hubby doesn't have much to do around the house so hoping we can get that accomplished.  Outside of that my goal is to have this baby!!  ;)

Monday, October 13, 2014

WAHM Review: Naturekins Nursing Pads

I received the product to review for free in exchange for an honest review.  There was no monetary exchange.

Barbara from Naturekins was a pleasure to work with, as have been most of the Mommas in this series.  However, Barbara is very unique in that she is a work at home mom from Canada!  She is a mom to three little girls and truly enjoys creating eco-friendly products!

She sent me a set of contoured nursing pads to review.  And I love them!  

Nice packaging is always a plus!

And I love how she includes this card with each set to show exactly what you are getting - she sent me a set for heavy leaking.

She has a ton of options as far as material go, here is a close up of what mine are:

Bamboo is super absorbent and, of course, I love that it is organic!

Barbara's nursing pads are unique because they are contoured and sized in order to prevent them showing through your bra and shirt.  Since I am currently a C-cup (thanks to being pregnant), she sent me the C-D size since I'll probably gain another cup size once my milk comes in.  They fit nicely now and I imagine will do well later on.  Here are a couple of pictures so that you can see the contour

Outer side

Inner side

5 Stars - I love that Barbara has worked so hard to prevent her pads from being seeing through your clothing as I hear that is a common problem.

I think the quality of these nursing pads is fabulous!  You can tell that they are handmade but you can also see the quality.  I have no doubt these will last me the next year as I breastfeed!  

Look at that stitching!  Pretty snazzy for a WAHM.  ;)

5 Stars

Barbara's customer service is great!  She was super willing to work with me and explained everything super thoroughly.  If you had any issues, I'm sure she would handle it professionally and graciously.

5 Stars

She was even kind enough to include some breastfeeding tips for new moms!  Which I personally loved!  I've made a mental note of more than one of these:

1. Avoid a terrible night experience by wearing nursing pads for the first 4 days at night even if you don't know if you will leak.  Waking up with wet sheets is no fun when sleep is a rare treat in those first few days.

2. Buy athletic tops with a build in bra to use as a night shirt so you have a way to keep your nursing pads in place without having to wear an uncomfortable bra at night.

3. Pack a pair of nursing pads in your purse and in your diaper bag...permanently.  So that way you are never without a pair.

4. If you get cracked nipples, turn the nursing pads so the wool side is out or buy all wool pads that keep the moisture away from the nipple.  This is also great when fighting thrush!

5. Make your own nursing tops by simply using your regular tops and putting a tank top underneath that you have cut the breast area out of.  This method prevents the exposed belly feeling when nursing that makes many new moms feel embarrassed.  I (Bri) also stumbled across this DIY Nursing Tank tutorial that I plan to try!  Found a ton of cami's at a yard sale for ten cents each - hoping for that to be my next project!

6. An inflatable nursing pillow is a low cost and great item for travel and home use.  Nursing pillows help prevent back strain and make a good latch easier.  Plus, the inflatable ones take up a lot less room!

I definitely would recommend Naturekins.  And I can't wait to give you all an update once I am able to actually use these!  I'm thinking these might be my favorite reusable nursing pads.  Barbara also makes a ton of adorably cute hats!  A lot of which are upcycled - which is super neat!

5 Stars

Head on over to Naturekins Etsy shop and do some shopping!  Let her know that Learning to Be 31 sent you!  BONUS: Right now the nursing pads are Buy One Get One Free!