I am excited to be linking up with “What I’ve Learned” with Emily P. Freeman. I have been a big fan of hers (books, blog, and podcast) for a couple of years now and I enjoy reading this particular link-up. It used to be monthly, but she has changed it up to do every season. This is the first seasonal one I am participating in.
Everything I mention is related somehow to my biggest news of the year…as of May 1st, we have a new member of the family!!! A sweet baby girl named Claire Elizabeth (I will devote a blog post to her in the near future)…hence no blogging for the past month. Anyways…everything I mention pretty much correlates to maternity leave/new baby because that’s pretty much what has been on my brain non-stop for the past few months.
What I’ve learned is that there is enough room in my heart to love two kids. I know it seems silly now to even think about, but I was definitely worried about how I was going to be able to love two kids because I love Emmalyn so much already. Your heart truly does expand and there is nothing better. I also learned that my 3 year old is so much more resilient than I give her credit for. She has adjusted to life with Claire so well. I could not want it to have gone any better. I was so stressed about her having jealousy issues and acting out because I wouldn’t be able to devote as much time with her, but so far we have had none of that. She has been the perfect big sister and it’s been such a joy to see her transition into this role.
Mothers Love Nipple Cream
So this is an odd thing to put on here, but I have learned that this stuff is amazing!!! I used plain lanolin when I breastfed Emmalyn and my nipples were so sore and cracked all the time. I decided to give this a try with breastfeeding with Claire because my sister told me about it (she used it with her baby boy) and I had read good reviews about it. It has been a game-changer and breastfeeding has been so much better this go- around. My nipples are still a little sore, but haven’t cracked or bled like I did with Emmalyn. It’s been pretty much a night and day difference and I attribute most of it to this product right here.
Fixer Upper/The Great British Baking Show
I’ve learned that these shows are my happy, relaxing, go-to shows to watch while on maternity leave. My husband was able to take 2 weeks off with me after having Claire and we sat and watched tons of episodes of each and they are just so relaxing and refreshing. I love that my husband enjoys them too and it is nice to watch them with him as we are adjusting to life with a 3 year old and a newborn. These shows have such a positive aspect to them and leave you feeling happy and wanting to bake or redecorate something.
Walmart Pickup Grocery
I’ve learned that with having a newborn and a 3 year old, you need to take advantage of all the help you can get. Enter Walmart Pickup Grocery. It is so hard to leave the house to run and get lunch at a drive-thru with a newborn, let alone going grocery shopping in the small window of time between feedings. This is where grocery pickup comes in handy. I just fill my shopping cart online, pick a pickup time, and someone at the store shops for me. When we get there at our selected pickup time, we just pull into a designated parking spot, call the specified number to tell them we are there, and a few minutes later out comes our groceries (they even load them up for you). You should check to see if it is available in your area…you won’t be disappointed (helpful hint…you might want to shop for your own produce, that can be hit or miss at times).
I learned that new car smells are just as nice the second time around. After 10 years, I got a new vehicle! I have had a Honda Accord for 10 years and really liked it, but it started making noises and had a lot of miles on it so we finally decided to pull the trigger and get a new vehicle. I got a Hyundai Santa Fe and I really love it! Driving it is a lot different driving than my car, but I am adjusting and I am enjoying it a lot! I do sort of feel like a traitor to my old car because I had it so long, but this one has awesome features (i.e. full panel sunroof, Apple CarPlay, heated/cooled seats, lots of room, etc.) and drives so smoothly that I don’t feel too badly about trading in my old car.
London Fog photo credit: delishably.com
I’ve learned that this is my new favorite way to treat myself. I’m trying to not drink as much coffee since I am breastfeeding and so I have discovered this yummy tea drink. I was at our local coffee shop one day when I was pregnant and asked them for a tea drink recommendation and this is what they gave me. It is an Earl Grey tea, with vanilla flavoring and steamed milk (your choice of regular, soy, or almond). It’s not my usual latte, but helps to curb my craving for it. It’s pretty tasty for when you’ve had a rough day with the newborn and just need to get out for a minute and treat yourself.
And last but not least…
I am so very thankful to work at a place where I accrue a lot of sick leave/vacation time. Because of that I am able to take my full 12 weeks of maternity leave and get paid for a majority of it. I really cherish this time with my babies…I did it with Emmalyn and am so thankful I am able to do it again with Claire. I will never have this time again where I can focus my whole days/weeks/months on them and not have to go to work. I have always wanted to be a stay-at-home mom, but that is just not how things have worked out and I am finally coming to terms with that (however, I am hoping/praying that someday in the near future I might be able to lessen my work week hours and have more time to spend with my girls), so these 3 months are the closest thing I might ever have to being a stay-at-home mom and I am doing my best to soak it all up.
Thanks for letting me share with you all that I’ve learned during this season of my life. The first part of this year has taught me a few different things pertaining to mothering and family life and I am looking forward to what the remaining year holds.
Until next time…keep it simple!