Why I Chose to Swaddle My Kids…

There were a few disagreements when I began to swaddle my babies after I had them, especially from my mom since that was not something she did when I was born. But there are a lot of good things that can come from swaddling your baby.

I liked to swaddle my kids because it kept them from startling themselves awake at night. After babies are born they have a natural startle reflex where they get scared in their sleep and their arms will fly up and scare them to the point where they wake up. As a new mom, you want to keep your baby asleep and not waking up every 5 minutes. Even when you just try to lay them down in their crib, it can cause them to startle themselves awake. Swaddling helps keep their arms close to their body so they don’t startle themselves.

There are many different kinds of swaddles out there as well. There is the blanket swaddle which includes a lot of twisting, tying, and wrapping. The blanket swaddle is nice because there are so many different colors and fabrics available to you and different positions you’re able to swaddle baby in.

There is also the sleep sack swaddle which only has a zipper going up the middle which requires no wrapping or twisting. I really liked the sleep sack swaddle because it allows the baby to move their arms and legs naturally as they would in the womb, but still doesn’t allow them to fully lift up their arms and startle themselves.

The velcro swaddle was my least favorite because my kids could always pull their arms out of them and it wasn’t tight enough to even hold their arms down since the velcro continued to come loose each time I used it (and it was also difficult to wash).

I think there are a lot of good benefits when it comes to swaddling babies. It calms them down and helps them stay asleep longer, it can keep them warm without having any loose blankets in the crib, and there are many different options for different parents and babies preferences.

Tips For an Easy Labor & Delivery

It can be really scary and nerve wracking when you find out that it’s most likely time for your baby to come. There are so many things rushing through your head that you are trying to not worry about, but unfortunately it’s possible to not worry. You are bringing a new life into the world and it’s a scary feeling.

Here are some tips for having a smooth delivery:

  1. Try to have a birth plan or ideas in mind, but don’t expect it to go as planned. Think of your birth plan as your most wanted things to happen during the birth experience, but know that it can be impossible for it to go exactly as planned. Think about if you want to go all natural or receive an epidural. Prepare yourself that your doctor could possibly not be the one delivering your baby. Mentally prepare yourself that baby will most likely not be born on their due date.
  2. When your water breaks, it will feel different for each individual. Personally for me, it felt like I kept accidentally peeing my pants every 5 minutes. Some people have a huge gush of water. It’s usually a clear fluid and smells… different. But if you think your water broke, then it probably did and you should call your doctor.
  3. If you get an epidural, do not move. No matter how scared you are or how much it moves, really try to not move when that needle is near your spine. When I got my epidural it felt like a burning sensation about the size of a fist on my back where the needle was. Then I felt a shock go down one of my whole legs and it made my leg jump up. Then over the process of having the epidural I felt very cold and kept shaking even though I couldn’t feel anything below my waist. If you decide to get an epidural, they will have to also put in a catheter, so be aware of that!
  4. Try to walk around if you can. It may sound pretty cliche, but walking around will actually help the baby move down and help move your labor along so you begin to dilate.
  5. When it comes to pushing, one of my best forms of advice that I tell people is to not scream. Screaming or yelling will use up your energy that you should be using to focus on pushing. Even though it will hurt a lot and you will want to scream, try not to.
  6. Finally, when you are at the point where it’s time to start pushing, curl up into your stomach with every push as if you were trying to do crunches. If you curl up into your stomach, it’ll help naturally push baby down because you’re not allowing them to stay up if they’re sitting up high near your rib cage.

I hope these can help you make your labor and delivery at least just a little bit easier. Let me know if any of them work for you!

Choosing Your Wedding Dress

It can be a tough decision trying to decide on your wedding dress, especially with all of the different styles to choose from. Here are some tips from my experience when choosing my wedding dress.

  1. People will always have a different opinion. It’s good to listen to people’s advice, but you can’t make everybody happy when choosing a dress. Make sure to choose what you like as well.
  2. Look at pictures and choose a style, but don’t be afraid to try on every style. A picture of a dress can look a lot different than it would on you, so don’t be afraid to explore.
  3. Don’t feel pressured. Even if everyone around you loves the dress on you, at the end of the day you need to love it too.
  4. Have some wiggle room in your budget. When you plan together your budget for your dress, keep a standard number in mind that you want to stay at, but also allow some wiggle room if your dream dress has a price just a little bit higher.
  5. Don’t be afraid to say no. It is your dress after all, so if you don’t like something, speak up. You don’t want to be caught trying to make other people happy and ending up hating the dress you bought.
  6. You don’t have to pick your dress the first time you go in to try some on. If you’re not sure, take the night to think about it and then come back on a different day with a clear head.

I feel as though a wedding dress can be a very important part of your wedding, so don’t be in a rush to make a decision. Try to be focused and have a clear mind and think about the overall picture of what you want your wedding day to be. Your day deserves to be perfect no matter what.