Guest Blogger ~ Moore From Katie

I often get emails from people interested in having me give them a little write up on the blog. Usually it is something that I don’t think fits here on Wife, Mom, Woman or they just want me to sell you something. (I love getting the word out about awesome products and handmade sellers but I’m not going to try and sell you anything!) It was so refreshing to hear from Katie that she was interested in doing a guest post for me. Her blog theme fits in perfectly with what I do over here and she wanted to do a post for Pregnancy Awareness Month (and I just so happen to be nearing the end of my pregnancy!). Thanks Katie, and welcome to Wife, Mom, Woman!

New Motherhood: A Few Tips for Hospital and Home 

The excitement of motherhood starts well before delivery day. The moment a woman discovers she is pregnant, she begins to envision what her new baby will be like and how she will change in her new role of motherhood. Preparing during pregnancy for delivery day and bringing baby home can help make the excitement of becoming a mother far outweigh any nerves.

The Hospital Stay

Labor and delivery is a big event in a woman’s life, so adequate preparation and education will make this event a more manageable and exciting one instead of a nerve-wracking event. Taking childbirth classes is a great way to prepare and learn about options available during delivery. Learning about pain management choices and optional services will help a woman make important decisions regarding her labor. Exercising and maintaining a healthy diet throughout pregnancy will help a woman handle and recovery from delivery better.

There are a number of procedures that take place following birth that a mother should be aware of. For example, a mother can choose to have her baby’s cord blood collected and stored for umbilical cord blood banking. This blood comes from the umbilical cord and is rich in stem cells that can possibly be used in a medical treatment. After the baby is born, there are also tests and immunizations that need take place before he or she can go home. For example, hospitals will take a few drops of blood from the newborns heel before the baby goes home. This is a standard procedure to screen for different medical conditions.

Nurses are there to work with new mothers and are a great resource for a mother to learn from.

Nurses can coach new mothers on baby’s feeding, handling, and hygiene; a mother should ask as many questions as she can think of as she learns to handle her newborn and become comfortable with the idea of doing all of the caretaking without the aid of the medical staff.

Once at Home

The baby is not the only vulnerable human in the household; new mothers need time to rest and recuperate from childbirth and adjust to life’s changes. Recuperation includes a lot of sleep, good nutrition, drinking plenty of fluids, and sharing peaceful moments with her baby. Every mother hears sleep-deprived tales from other woman, but a mother should remember to grab extra sleep while baby is sleeping to help keep sleep-deprived feelings at bay.

When it comes to baby’s sleep time, allowing them to sleep alone in a safe crib without blankets and extras will help prevent SIDS. Many mothers want their baby close to them often, including snuggling during nap times; however, this can be dangerous for a newborn.

Simply having the guilt-free time to sing, rock, hum, and hold one’s very own baby is priceless and not likely to happen if there is a houseful of people. Limiting visits by friends and family to certain hours a day for the first few weeks can be helpful.

All of the above health tips can go a long way to helping a woman sail smoothly through labor and into motherhood, where life will be full of rewarding and special moments with baby!

“This article was written by Katie Moore. Katie is an active writer within the blogging community who discusses maternity, motherhood, prenatal health, childbirth and other topics within this niche.  If you have any questions or would like to connect with Katie please contact by visiting her blog, Moore From Katie or her twitter @moorekm26.”

Pinspired for Baby

When I realized that I had done absolutely nothing to get ready for baby, I suddenly panicked and for some reason turned to my sewing machine.  The kids and I went to the fabric store and I let them help pick out some fabric for our baby and some for my sister’s baby. I know new babies get bombarded with blankets, but I wanted some special from me.

I had pinned a post from delia creates on some sweet and simple swaddling blankets and since I had just been gifted a hand me down serger that I had no idea how to use (I had no idea how to use any serger for that matter) it seemed like a perfect easy project to start with.

Can you tell Miracle picked this one?

I love flannel receiving blankets, but most of them are so tiny. These are such a great size! And I am pleased to say I mostly figured out my serger. Axel picked out some fabric for Auntie Amber’s baby too, but I forgot to take a picture of that one. I highly recommend this quick, easy and inexpensive project. They make excellent baby gifts!

I love this fabric!

I had another Pin for an embellished minky blanket from the fiCkle piCkle. Originally I was drawn to the embellished aspect of the blanket, but when it came time to add them I changed my mind. I was afraid of possible choking hazards and I didn’t want them to get in the way of coziness.

I normally would never have chosen this fabric, but I love it so much!

This is another simple project and great baby gift. Once again, I love the size and I tested the snuggle factor on my other kiddos. These blankets are fantastic. The minky can be a bit tricky to work with, but just take your time measuring and pinning and you will be fine. Also, make sure you buy the minky on sale or with a coupon or it can get pricy.

I loved the first one so much I had to make a second!

Of course I made one for my sister too. I wanted the babies to be matching so I used the same green minky. Then for a matching onesie, I cut out one of the rectangles from the flannel fabric and stitched it on. I also cut out some of the flowers from baby girls flannel and stitched it on a onesie for her. LOVE!

Possibly my new 'go-to' baby gift!

Belly Pics

I am so grateful to finally have that amazing family photo you saw yesterday as well as some beautiful pregnancy photos. I haven’t been much of a belly pic girl and so now that we are on #4 and most likely the final pregnancy it was suddenly important to me to capture the beauty of life.

My amazing husband took and edited all these photos (and more). He is so fantastic. Sometimes I get a little annoyed because I dreamed for so long of having a nice camera, and Andrew got me one for Christmas but he is so much better at using it than I am! Oh well, at least someone knows how… Learning is on my to-do list.

Evangeline has always been a little obsessed with my belly. Now that it has grown I think that is all she sees when she looks up at me. She always says, “I like your belly” and then kisses it. Or when she gets tired she will cry, “Belly, belly, belly” and want to rub her hand or cheek on my stomach. It gets a little overwhelming for me but Andrew keeps telling me I’ll miss it when she grows out of it. We’ll see.

Appropriate Title

Around our house we have a pile of old half flattened pillows. The kids use them for movie nights to make little pillow beds on the floor but I really just want to throw them all out. Enter Pinterest. I found a tutorial for making pillow mattresses. How could this not be the most perfect idea ever for my kids!

The tutorial comes from No Rest for the Creative, which is a perfectly appropriate title for my week last week trying to get these  made.  I originally came across her tutorial for the same thing only using knit fabric, but I really liked the idea of using cotton better.

They took me forever to make because I was being a super perfectionist, but I think you need to be if you want it to look nice! There is a lot of measuring long fabrics, sewing long seams and smoothing out and lining up. Not to mention my preggo belly kept getting in the way and crawling around on the floor all hours of the night didn’t do much for my pregnancy induced reflux. I could only work while the kids were sleeping, because they were gifts.

I found some perfect pillows at Wal-Mart for $3.97 each. You could go even cheaper at $2.50 for Standard pillows from Wal-Mart or even $.99 from Ikea, but Andrew encouraged me to get nice pillows since I put all the time into making them. The $3.97 pillows were technically Jumbo size but they weren’t stuffed full so they fit into the opening perfectly. (Ok, it took a little work to get them in, but they are so cozy and look great.) I adjusted the tutorial a bit so that Axel and Miracle’s mattresses each had 5 pillows in them. I looked like a bit of a crazy lady purchasing 14 pillows! I had two carts full.

I love that you can fold the top pillow under to prop up the top of the mattress. Axel even realized that if you roll the top three pillows it works as a perfect chair for gaming or sitting up to eat a snack.

Five pillows was a bit excessive for Miracle, but at least it will grow with her! I also found another tutorial from Southern Disposition on Pinterest that looked way simpler, but the finished look wasn’t as polished. Also, the way I did it was cheaper. But look at this cute idea for how to set up the same bed that we already have! Right now Miracle sleeps on top and Evangeline underneath, but hopefully that will change soon…

Princess Fort Bed Idea from Southern Disposition

The pillow mattresses are getting used like crazy which makes me super thrilled especially after all the time and love I put into them. Now I’m off to throw away a bunch of old half flat pillows… or maybe I’ll search Pinterest for some ideas of what to do with them! Have you been Pinspired lately?

Lego Birthday Party – Decor and More

Continuing on from my last post and our Lego Birthday Party Awesomeness – the food edition… I’m really excited to share the decorations and other touches we did for the party. Super fun! So let’s get started.

the Invitations

After being inspired by this Etsy listing I set to making my own Lego invites. Want some directions? Here you go!

Supplies:

Black Cardstock

Colored Cardstock (I chose red yellow and blue)

White Cardstock

Printer

Circle Cutter (or something circular to trace)

3D Pop up foam adhesive

Glue Stick or other adhesive

Start by cutting your black cardstock into 8 1/2″x 5 1/2″ strips. Fold in half. Cut your colored cardstock into 5 1/8″x 4″ rectangles. Adhere the colored cardstock onto the front of your black card using a glue stick, double stick tape, or whatever your preferred method. Using your circle cutter (or circular object) cut 4 circles approximately 1 3/4″ out of the same color of cardstock. Apply a piece of 3D pop up foam adhesive to the back of each circle and space them evenly on top of your colored rectangle.

For the inside of the card I used my computer/printer to type up our birthday invite. I used the line “Let’s Build A Party!” (which the kids loved) and then I searched Google images for a Lego logo. I added our time, date and location info using colored ink and then printed it out on white cardstock. I then trimmed the cardstock to size and used the glue stick to adhere it to the inside of the card.

These invites fit perfectly inside a standard 4×6 invitation envelope. They were super simple and turned out very sharp with the black and bright solids.

the Present

I wrapped Axel’s gift the same way I did the juice boxes. Just some blue wrapping paper with blue wrapping paper circles and some more 3D pop up foam adhesive. The gift was pretty cool too! Axel wanted to watch a movie for his party and so I thought a Lego movie would be pretty great. I was so excited when I came across this:

the Gift

Shatterpoint Entertainment has put together a couple of movies using stop motion animation and Legos that retell popular Bible stories. Their newest one is on the story of Jericho and it is straight from the Bible. They also sell comic books of the story and we purchased those to go along with Axel’s gift and one for each of his friends to send home in their goodie bags. The movie was fun and the kids were all so amazed with the animation. They kept asking how they did everything. I may have to purchase the how to book that Shatterpoint sells as well!

the Goodie Bags

Excuse the lighting on that picture! Someday I will learn how to use my camera… I wish I had gotten a picture of all the goodie bags lined up in a row. They were so cute. I was inspired by this Etsy listing and I knew I could do it myself simply. Cardstock didn’t look right with the shiny bags, so I used the wrapping paper to make circles and affixed them with the 3D pop up foam adhesive. I used 4 dots of the adhesive because the wrapping paper was a little more flimsy and I didn’t want it curling. My gift bags were approximately 7 1/2″ x 9 1/2″ and the circles I cut were approximately 3 1/4″. Add some red tissue and they looked great! (Inside the goodie bags were their comic books, a Lego man ($2.99 at Target) and the crazy straws that they used with their supper.)

the Bag Tags

These were one of my favorite parts. I took a Lego and had Andrew drill a hole in the end of each one. Then I threaded the hole with embroidery floss and wrote their name on the side with a sharpie. Unfortunately I couldn’t find my black sharpie so I had to use a red one, but it still worked. I did most of the bags with a yellow Lego so we could have all the party colors represented, but I ran out and had to do some in red too.

the Game

I also found a fun idea for a Lego Collaboration game. We gave each child a baggie full of Legos and they decided they were going to build a tower. They went around the circle and each put on one piece at a time. I wasn’t sure how it would go over but they all loved it!

the Table

I kept the table decorations simple. I found red square plates, yellow plasticware and blue napkins. Along with some blue and yellow crazy straws just for fun.

the "Streamers"

I saw this listing on Etsy, but we were sticking to squares and rectangles so I decided to make my own garland. I simply cut out several different sizes of squares and rectangles out of red, blue and yellow cardstock and then ran them through my sewing machine using white thread. After each piece went through I raised the presser foot and pulled  some excess thread in between the pieces. I originally sewed them into one long strand but didn’t like how that looked and so then I cut them to have between 3 and 5 pieces on each strand. Love, love, love how it turned out and we left them up a few days because I didn’t want to take them down!

It was a super fantasticly successful party and fun was had by all. Don’t forget to check out my Lego Birthday Party- Food Edition for more Lego birthday party ideas!

Lego Birthday Party- Food Edition

We really had a blast at Axel’s Lego themed birthday party. It was so him and I loved adding all the little details. He was so excited about each part of it which made everything even more fun. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much all at once so I’m splitting it into two parts. Today… the FOOD!

Axel decided he wanted to have supper at the party and determined that pizza would be best, so that was easy. For drinks I was inspired by this pin and made ice cubes that were supposed to be rectangular… like Legos. Andrew thought that was stretching it a bit, but I think it fit the theme just fine! I used Kool-Aid packets and mixed them using  half the sugar and half the water so that they would be super concentrated in color and flavor. If I do it again though I would use 3/4 the sugar because they were a little bitter. We then poured Sierra Mist over them and the kids loved it! When their soda was gone they crushed the ice with their spoons and added a little more soda to make slushies.

Yellow Red and Blue Lego Ice Cubes

I also had pinned these cute Lego cookies and wanted to give them a try. I found this recipe for sugar cookie bars and decided to combine the two. They were pretty tasty, although I wish I had made the frosting darker. I just used regular vanilla frosting and added food coloring, but I actually ran out of red so they are kind of lighter than the theme. Oh well!

For the cake I wanted to use this idea but I just didn’t like the idea of using giant marshmallows (it just didn’t work in my brain). Instead I baked one cake in a regular rectangular cake pan. I cut it in half, and then I cut one of the halves in half. So I ended up with one square cake and two smaller rectangular cakes… Make sense? Then I took 8 cupcakes and cut the tops off (Andrew had no problem helping me eat the tops) and put the bottom of the cupcake on the cake and frosted them. Four cupcakes on the square cake and two on each of the rectangle cakes. I forgot to take pictures of the smaller ones though. I frosted one yellow, one blue, and one red.

And last but not least… the juice boxes. I saw this cute idea on Etsy, and it was pretty simple to do myself. I took the straws off the juice boxes, wrapped them in blue wrapping paper (just like you would a gift) and then taped the straws back on to the back of the box. Don’t forget to mark where the hole is for the straw! Then I cut out two circles for each juice box out of the wrapping and affixed them to the front of the juice box using 3-D foam pop-up circles.

 

The kids thought they were pretty neat. I also found this post with a free printable for your juice boxes if you prefer.

That wraps up the food edition! Coming soon… invites, decor and more! haha.

Birthday Breakfast

I had the pleasure of celebrating my amazing seven year old yesterday! I am so proud of Axel. He is sweet, loving, considerate, attentive…. the list goes on and on! I really wanted to make his day special and since he was having a friend party for supper and would be at school for lunch I decided on a birthday breakfast for the family.

The kids helped with some prep work. I found this idea for rainbow fruit kabobs and blogged about it last St. Patrick’s Day but we had never got around to trying them. They were so fun to make and delicious to eat! I liked our fruit choices a little better than the original post and there was less prep work too. We chose strawberries, oranges, pineapple, kiwi, blueberries and grapes. (Make sure you supervise young ones with the skewers.)

I had never made monkey bread for the kiddos before and I figured now would be a glorious time to introduce them to it. I just followed the recipe on the biscuit package and it was delicious. They were definite fans.

It was fun watching Axel reading all his own cards this year! Getting so grown up. Stay tuned for more birthday details regarding our Lego themed birthday party!!!

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