Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Postpartum Recovery Must Haves

Are you nearing the end of your pregnancy and are wondering what recovery is really going to be like? With my #1 I had NO IDEA! We missed that part of my birthing class because I had Mason before they got to it. I was in complete shock about what it was going to be like. I knew that you bled like a period for a time after, and my doula said to get some depends but she didn't say it was going to hurt worse, in a way, than labor did. I think it felt like it hurt worse because it lingered for so long. I tore during the birth of Mason, only a 1st degree but I still had a stitch, and I had hemorrhoids, from pushing so hard so I couldn't really sit very comfortably. Everything was swollen, oh and since I am a red head, we bleed more. So instead of the lovely "up to" 6 weeks of bleeding I had 8-10 weeks. If I did anything too strenuous I would start to bleed again even after the 8-10 weeks. UGH! 

Well, I learned really quickly, within the first couple of days after having Mason and doing research, what I really needed. And I used this same list to help with recovery for #2, which I also tore a 1st degree and had hemorrhoids again, and will use this same list for #3. I honestly think that this is THE BEST list of things that you really need. I have added a link to AMAZON for easy ordering! 


My step by step process: Clean with the perineal bottle. Gently spread the bottom balm, Then spray with the bottom balm spray. Then the dermoplast. Then prepare the depends with the pad placed in it, and the 3 tucks pads placed on top of the pad. And then done! I know it sounds like a lot, but this has been the one thing that has really helped with healing faster, and swelling less. Really I do this routine for the first 2 weeks. Then move on to the thin pads for the next 6-8 weeks.

You will get a perineal bottle.
 You can't wipe after having a baby and you get to squirt warm water on your goods to clean you off. It sounds weird but IT FEELS SO GOOD! How to use: Fill it with warmish hot water before you sit down to pee unless you have someone there to fill it up for you. Then as you go it will cool down a bit. You do not want cold water on your bits! And too hot is ouch! 

Bottom Balm (for mom): I LOVE Earth Mama Angel Baby bottom balm. How to use: Spread it on your lady bits, gently, every time you go to the bathroom. The spray bottle of Earth Mama Angle Baby  as more easy and less messy, didn't have the same potency as the balm did. But you can use both if you want. Start with balm first, then the spray. This will help you heal and get less swollen too. 

Dermoplast: You might get this from the hospital. You need to check. This is a freezing spray that is nice too use especially if you have hemorrhoids or a tear. I numbs everything. How to use: Spray on AFTER you use the bottom balm to get the cooling effect from that first. Then spray. Use until you run out.

Depends: You only get a few mesh undies from the hospital. And yes these are embarrassing to wear, they are amazing! And super helpful. How to use: When you run out of the mesh undies from the hospital, use these as you would underwear to catch spillover of excess bleeding. Only need to use up to 2 weeks. Change as often as you need.

Pads (2 kinds): LONG for the first half of the after bleeding. How to use: You will put these inside the depends and change the pad every time and the depends catches everything else. I use Kotex overnight for this purpose. These were so similar to the extra long and thick ones that I got from the hospital.

When things start getting lighter I use the 7th Generation chlorine free extra long, thin with wings until I stop bleeding. 

Tucks Pads: You might get a jar of this from the hospital, make sure you check ahead of time. How to use: To be used just after birth until you feel less swollen, or until you run out. Put about 3 pads on top of your pad and just let it rest against you. The cooling is nice. Use until all pads are used.


Coconut oil in a small tub- You will want this before and after every time you nurse to help your nipples from cracking. This is instead of Lanolin cream (which is really sticky and smells funny to me) How to use: Rub a little on before you breastfeed and rub a little on after you feed. I put like 1/4 cup in a plastic tub to put in my hospital bag cause I didn't want to take the glass container. Make sure to get organic. I like Trader Joe's coconut oil or Spectrum (linked above) is good too! 


Sitz Bath: And for your first few days after baby it is a good idea to take a sitz bath. And even with baby. How to do: You just fill up the tub with a little bit of water. Not a lot at most a foot and use this sitz with the herbs in the muslin bag so that the herbs don't get all stuck in areas you don't want them and that are healing. Let it soak like tea before you get it. It will feel so good and will help with the swelling.

This time I am going to try a full belly wrap. I have tried just the hip wrap but I didn't like it. But I really do want to try the full belly wrap to help with shrinking my uterus back down faster as it becomes more difficult with each baby you have. After tons of research I decided to do the Belly Bandit B.F.F. How to use: Start wearing as soon as possible after birth. In the hospital. It is supposed to be so comfortable you can even sleep in it. Just take off to shower! Listed below are the benefits of it.

  • Double Compression, six panel design
  • Luxuriously Soft, Earth Friendly material
  • Lose Inches and Look Slimmer Instantly
  • Doctor Recommended
  • Accelerates Healing
  • Helps Minimize Stretch Marks
  • Provides Comfort after C-Section
  • Supports Back, Leg & Core Muscles
  • Adds Support while Breastfeeding
  • Great for shorter or short waisted women
  • Our exclusive Power Compress Core™ is your secret weapon

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Monday, July 25, 2016

Never Miss A Monday Workout

The one day that everyone dislikes. MONDAY! It is so important to start your week strong so that you can finish it stronger. I have noticed that when I don't workout on Monday, I tend to miss Tuesday too, then jump on the wagon by Wednesday. Get Thursday done, then start making excuses by Friday. But if I get my Monday workout in, I will get my Tuesday workout in, rock Wednesday and Thursday and generally get my Fridays in! Today I am on my game! I got in my normal 2 workouts. I actually got in a morning yoga session, then did my strength training in the afternoon! GO ME! So go get your workout in today to rock the week! You are worth it!

Want more daily motivation and inspiration? Click here get free advice, support and encouragement + a free copy of my Clean Eating guide to help you get started on your health and fitness journey! 

Friday, July 22, 2016

Our Baby Nursery Sneak Peek

I am so excited because I wasn't planning on doing Elyse's nursery yet. I had thought that Collin would still be in the room when she was born. But with the boys sharing the same room so much earlier than expected, and doing well, why not get her room all done!

For 5 years I have been planning her room. Well, just a couple details really. I saw these poppy decals and knew I wanted them behind her crib, and also to add a religious picture in there. (We have one in every room). I had planned on keeping the same bedding that they boys used, and just being as low cost as possible, but...when a friend of mine mentioned crib sheets decorated with poppies, I RAN WITH IT! And got a few items on major sale! I couldn't help it! And it has turned out SO GREAT!

Color palette for her room: 
Light yellow for the wall color, pops or red and light green.

Existing in nursery:
I did reuse a lot of items from the boys to help save some $$:
Green gingham curtains
Lamp with the matching green gingham shade
Mickey Lamp with cross stitch shade-made by my mom. That was in my room growing up.
Table used as a changing table,
changing table pad with cover with the green polka dots
Cross stitch Precious Moments Noah's Ark: My mom made that about 30 years ago
Quilt hanging on the wall: My mom made that when I was about 9 years old and I claimed it for my kids!
Green "Shrek" chair. (We inherited it from my grandmother and it seems to be a very popular piece. We have another one in our room and another rocker but that is a crushed velvet in yellow. All from the 70's)

What we got:
Crib Sheets and quilt: Little Unicorn-
Crib Skirt: Pottery Barn Kids- Petter Rabbit Nursery Bedding
Wall Decals: Room Mates Peel and Stick D├ęcor- Poppies At Play Giant Wall Decals
Pictures: Lowe's- Poppies Double Set (lucky find!) & Greg Olsen- Forever and Ever
Swaddle Blankets: Aden & Anais- RED

Enjoy the sneak peek!

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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Bump Update: 31 Weeks

We just got home late yesterday afternoon from our final vacation as a family of 4! We went out to Virginia Beach for Mason's 5th birthday because he really wanted to go to the beach! Surprisingly, I DIDN'T GET BURNED! We spent a good 3 hours at the beach and I thought I was getting fried. All I came away with was more FRECKLES! So did Mason. he has some new ones across his cheeks. So cute! It was a really great trip and both boys enjoyed the beach and seeing the boats and Navy ships! So glad that we were able to fit in a trip this year that was close to home, not too hot and tons of fun! 
On the baby front, all has been quiet. I am still dealing with minimal heart burn, since we changed our eating times. The only hard part I am dealing with is my ever growing belly which is making sleep more difficult and some pretty hard kicks from Elyse. I have such a hard time getting comfy some times! Still loving my veggies. Thankfully my veggie garden is almost ready to harvest! As Mason said last night, "We are going to have a big feast!" Bell peppers, tomatoes, lettuce, potatoes and WATERMELON! YUM! (well, not the watermelon part for me since I can't eat it but the fam will enjoy it!) 

Total Weight Gain: Gained 18.9 pounds total. Weight as of this morning 256.6 pounds. We just got back from our last family vacation as a family of 4 yesterday. I have been swollen from the heat and being out in it so much. So I am curious as to what my weight does in the next couple of days after I am back to my normal eating (daily Shakeology) and the puffiness goes down.

Symptoms: Minor heartburn this week. Trying not to eat too close to bed time. We are eating dinner around 5:30 pm most night instead of an hour later, like we do when I am teaching. So that has helped a lot. Peeing a ton! But I am making sure I am drinking tons of water though so I don't get dehydrated. My new rule, after every time I go to the bathroom I drink more water.
Baby’s Size: Coconut (~18 inches inches, 3.2 pounds)
Maternity Clothes: Yes, bottoms need to wear maternity or stretchy pants. Tops I wear maternity now and my bigger t-shirts but those are starting to get tight now. Wearing my new Fabletics sports bra in these pictures and LOVE THEM and the fun colors! A ton more coverage and super comfy!
Stretch Marks: I already have a ton that I got when I gained weight years ago. So nothing new. I am using Honest Company belly balm right now though to help my belly stretch so I do not get any new ones.
Gender: GIRL!!! 
Sleep: Sleep is like never ending for me. I am up at 11:30pm, 1:30am, and 3:30am without fail to use the bathroom. Then I have a hard time falling asleep again, and then Matt is up for work around 5am so I get up then too. Basically I am up every 2 hours to pee! Nights just seem to drag since I can't get comfy, or back to sleep easily. Oh and she likes to move A TON around the 11:30-midnight wake up. It is crazy how active she gets! 
Miss Anything: Sleeping comfortably flat on my belly or back! Sleeping through the night. 
Cravings: Veggies. Are really the only thing I really have to have with my meals. I really don't have any cravings of things that "I have to have". I just really enjoy eating good foods. Every night at our hotel they had an appetizer, it really was a meal. I went straight for the salad and had a very large salad or 2 and added extra veggies from the veggie platter!  
Aversions: Sweets taste too sweet for me, so I can only handle a little at a time. I guess that is my only aversion and kind of good!
Excited About: Meeting our little girl. It feels like it is getting so close. And the fact that the nursery is DONE! 
Workouts: Eh for this week! I only got in 2 days of regular workouts this past week. With being on vacation I didn't do my regular workouts but...I did walk 7 miles in the 3 days we were out of town! So that was great! My regular Workouts include: 21 Day Fix yoga & pilates Beachbody On Demand Active Maternity and Diary Of A Fit Mommy's Fit For Two 2nd Trimester workouts in daily. 

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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The Power of a Mantra

My motto of the day: I am too positive to be doubtful, too optimistic to be fearful and too determined to be defeated. I have always been overly positive and optimistic to a fault, and I am damned determined, (my dad says that all the time.) Heck I told everyone I was not getting an epidural when I have a baby and no one believed me I didn't, TWICE! These are some of my strongest qualities, they just have to be used in the right way. When I honestly want something there is NOTHING IN THIS WORLD THAT WILL STOP ME! Come hell or high water, pregnant or not. I do what I want to accomplish, (That was my saying to do my 1/2 marathon at 29 weeks pregnant)

Believe in yourself and never, ever give up. If you want to have a healthy lifestyle: DON'T MAKE EXCUSES! Be so positive that you can not doubt yourself. Be so optimistic that you won't be scared of the "what if I fail" and be so damned determined that you will NOT be defeated by silly cravings or lazy afternoons. You are worth more than any excuse. Do you believe that? Do you really believe that? YOU SHOULD because you ARE! So...I challenge you today, REPEAT this motto 10 times throughout the day and see what it does for you on the inside. I dare you to tell me that it doesn't give you a little fire and passion to achieve what you want to achieve. There is strength in your thoughts and words. Use them to drive you and make you AMAZING! I love you guys and I want you to succeed, and I fully believe in strength in numbers and having a cheerleader. I AM YOUR CHEERLEADER! I want you to be happy.
If you want to join my August exclusive group, try out Shakeology to see how much it really can help you too, Combine it with 21 Day Fix or 21 Day Fix Extreme (Both ON SALE for only 8 MORE DAYS!)  and get amazing results (click here to learn more), let's chat today! This is YOUR TIME! This is YOUR SIGN! Let's do this!

Want more daily motivation and inspiration? Click here get free advice, support and encouragement + a free copy of my Clean Eating guide to help you get started on your health and fitness journey! 


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