Category Archives: Parenting

Night Weaning and Losses

The Journey Continues

If you are a regular here, you probably read my post about our unexpected gift around Thanksgiving and maybe…just maybe you have been waiting for some type of update on how things have been progressing.  Initially, I contemplated a creative way to share my journey with you all.  I knew I didn’t want to vlog about it.  I also didn’t really feel up to creating a post every week to chronicle the milestones and growth of the baby as well as my cravings and feelings I had experienced either.  So honestly, I started to think that maybe I just want to create a series of pregnancy posts that would help others during their pregnancy.  Not necessarily in any specific order, but as I was inspired to write and share.  I still look forward to doing this.  If you have gotten to know me a bit through my blogging, you are probably now understanding that it’s hard for me to make things all about me even though this is my blog.  Perhaps it has to do with my core values where I’m always seeking to put others before me in my every day life.  I don’t think my personality should emit anything different through my blogging.

Ok so since we found out we were expecting, I started experiencing a boat load of fatigue and all day sickness all at once.  I can remember being sick last time with JR from weeks 7-14, but this queasiness is a bit different.  I’m more tired this time around for sure.  Chasing after JR on a daily basis might have something to do with that.  We also started to night wean our little guy because we want to make sure that by the time the new baby is here, he is used to not breastfeeding at night and is sleeping in his own bed most of the time.  I honestly love to still breastfeed and co-sleep with JR, but I realize that co-sleeping with a toddler and a newborn could be dangerous.  Also, I know that my nights could be long with nursing a newborn.  Knowing that a newborn’s primary nutrition is breast milk for the first year, I definitely don’t want JR to feel jealous because of my nightly nursing sessions with the baby.  If he still wants to, I plan to tandem nurse my two nurslings for as long as JR wants to nurse.  Night weaning may happen at the one year mark though with baby number 2.  With all of my first trimester all day sickness and fatigue, night weaning a toddler right now has been even more of a struggle some nights.  He’s been doing ok.  I think overall he understands that after a particular hour he can’t nurse again until the sun comes up.

Another reason why it has been a bit difficult for me to create posts focused around pregnancy is because I have two blogger friends who have experienced miscarriages during their first trimester very recently.  Call me crazy, but I guess I just felt like seeing posts about pregnancy when an experience like that is still new might take them back to thinking about their loss.  Perhaps I was mourning their losses in my own way, too.   I could imagine how I might feel if it happened to me, I could remember how it felt when it did happen to me.  I have experienced the loss of a pregnancy in the past…one that I was forced to lose so maybe the feeling they had experienced was similar to what I felt…they wrote about their losses, but I knew that I could never really know so I just wanted to be sensitive to how they could feel if they read a post about a pregnancy that was progressing.  I believe one day they both will be expecting again and when they both are, I hope that I still know them so that I can encourage and support them along their journey of growing life within them.


Potty Training In 3 Days

Potty Training in 3 Days


I originally thought this post was going to be about how we potty trained JR in 3 days. It will actually be about how we attempted to potty train him in that time frame, specifically during the Thanksgiving weekend.  If you aren’t  familiar with this method, you can take a look here at the Babycenter post that I used in order to learn the steps to complete a “potty training weekend” or what I like to call potty training in 3 days.


As a first time mom, I’ve often heard things regarding potty training like “you know, they will do it when they are ready right?” As far as I’m concerned, this is one sided experience talking. I know every child is different because I know of many parents who have potty trained their kids as young as 15 months using this method.  Not everyone is old school and just makes their child sit on the potty for a long time after the age of 2. My thing is, if you never show your child the potty or attempt to expose them to it in some way even if it’s not with a method like this, how could you know whether or not they are ready any earlier than you would have anticipated?


As far as I’m concerned, the pros list for this method in our situation outweighed the cons.  We are in an ideal situation to try it.


-I’m a stay at home parent so follow up with the potty training weekend for the recommended 3 months afterwards can be done by me most of the time.  If your daycare or caregiver is willing to follow up on it for that long, you would also be in an optimal situation as well.


-As far as I was concerned, I didn’t realize how exhausting it would be following around or keeping a 19 month old to a specified area for a full day.  It actually became very stressful the first day between me and hubby because even though we knew he would pee and or poop on the floor, it happened pretty frequently and one of us had to keep watching him all day like a hawk so we could put him on the potty when this happened.  Imagine us doing that and trying to do things like get something to eat, etc.  We didn’t have a lot planned or anything, but I’m warning you, it is definitely harder than I thought.

We never made it outside (which is recommended that you do for day 2 for up to an hour).  It didn’t seem like JR knew when he was peeing.  He would just let it go even after we told him repeatedly that pee pee goes in the potty.  We even put his hand on the rag and ours over his to help us clean it up.  I wonder if the expert put that tip in there with the notion that most kids don’t want to help clean up.  Well my son loves to! So I’m not sure if he saw that as a punishment or something fun he would help mommy with. Knowing JR’s history with helping around the house, I’m pretty sure it was the latter.

In conclusion, JR was not ready to be potty trained.  If your child isn’t showing about a 75% success rate or if they seem to not notice the pee coming down his or her leg, it is suggested that you stop and try again in 6 to 8 weeks.  This is what we intend to do.

I realize now that JR pulling down his pants and trying to take off his diaper isn’t really a sign of readiness.  He just enjoys being nakey. :)

How was your potty training experience with your little ones?

Have you ever tried this method before? 

Would you try it with your kids when you have them?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!


Please, please don’t forget to visit my sponsor for this month:

Rachel at The Random Writings of Rachel



How to Decide If You Want to Become A Stay at Home Mom


This post is literally just going to be a brainstorming tool to get your wheels turning.  I hope this helps you to answer the question how to decide if you want to become a stay at home mom.  I realize that some people’s values and beliefs may play a factor in this so bare with me.  For some families, the idea of one parent staying home may seem old school or just not practical because of today’s cost of living.  Many people are also very comfortable with where they are in their careers and feel they will be missing out if they do decide to stay home for good or even for a few years while their children are still young.  

What I have realized is apart of being a parent sometimes means we have to sacrifice many things that we want in order to do what is best for our children and entire families.  With our cut throat, corporate style careers and enticing advertisements provoking us to constantly want more out of life and to strive for the American dream, this can become a bit complicated to decide.  I admit when we were pregnant with my son, there were many things that we thought that we could not live without that we now no longer possess and we surprisingly have no regard of most of these material things.  
I would never criticize a parent or family for choosing to have both parents go back to work, so if that is your decision, this post is not focused on making you feel less of a parent because that was your decision.  Here are some things that if staying home has crossed your mind, that you might want to consider:
1)  Some moms who are thinking about staying home have a fear of being bored and missing their jobs when they decide to leave to be home with the kids.  I will admit after I first left my job, there were days that I actually missed seeing people and just going to work, especially on the days that I was extremely exhausted and too tired to decide how I was going to make other mommy friends.  And sometimes there is the desire to want more adult interaction besides that of your significant other when he comes home each day.  Here are some things that you can do if you decide to stay home once you are ready:  you can join mom or parenting groups in your area.  I have found so many online groups that cater to moms and parents.  Some of them are online only and many more are local.  

If you are breastfeeding, you can join your local La Leche League chapter.  If you are into it or want to learn more about it, you can join a local group for Babywearing International.  There is Mommy’s Network, Mocha Moms and I musn’t forget  These are only a few of many that are out there.  I’ve also joined online ones that also sometimes have groups that cater to your specific locale like Facebook (you can join groups), Babycenter, Cafe Mom and Circle of Moms.  Again, there are many more.  I’m just naming a few.  Not to mention your local library that usually offers free story time and playdates for kids, as well as gymborees or the YMCA where you can get memberships and go to Mommy and Me classes.  
2)  Finances.  Isn’t that some people’s reason for not letting one parent stay home?  Married couples tend to get double taxed when they both are working so it will be nice to get rid of that with one solid income coming into the house.  Do you need to have 2 vehicles.  You might say yes.  We thought we did as well.  We survived fine on just the one vehicle, actually.  
Talk about sacrifice! Would you be willing to give up some luxuries like cable?  We found some cheaper internet TV versions people use, some decide to go with basic cable or no cable at all.  We mostly watch videos anyway.  We have tried things like Netflix before too.  We can watch our own DVDs on the computer and we have an iPad where we still have apps like PBS and things like that for our 16 month old.  
Have you considered doing some side business opportunities to see if you can make some money while you are home?  The wonderful thing about deciding to stay home with your kids is it doesn’t have to be a just stay home, watch the kids and clean up the house all day like most people think. Fellow Christians should know that even the woman that was referenced in Proverbs 31 in biblical times worked sometimes from her home.  She  made clothes and gave them to a merchant to sell.  Do you sew? Would you like to get into direct sales and host parties or market products online?  You could even start a blog and learn how to begin making money from that or even social media sites.  Some people start a home business or simply work freelance as a Virtual Assistant.  
I personally have gone into some direct sales for health and wellness and I have this blog that I am starting to build in order to generate some income as well.  The possibilities are endless with the internet and technology.  We are to the point where even a single parent can do these things right from home!
These are just some ideas to get your wheels turning if you are thinking of becoming a stay at home mom.  I hope I was able to help someone out there in the world who is thinking about taking a leap of faith and just doing something like this!  I must say, it has been pretty amazing watching my son blossom and grow each passing day that I am home with him.  Are you a stay at home parent?  What is some advice that you would give to someone thinking of doing the same?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.  Until next time!  


Linking up with: 



Breastfeeding Basics

I’m writing this post because I run into, and know personally, so many women who wish they could have breastfed or wished they breastfed longer than they actually did.  For the people who never wanted to breastfeed, this is not directed towards you.  Professionals in our society (especially in America) don’t seem to know much about breastfeeding in some cases and in others, they seem more concerned with forcing us to use formula that many women find themselves in a place where they aren’t getting enough support from their doctors or even the people around them.  After my experience with my first child and from being around tons of other women who have breastfed, here is a list breast feeding basics that will help you to get a good idea of what to expect:

1)  If you are thinking about breastfeeding know this:  If you are willing to only “try it,” you are setting yourself up for not really succeeding with or not going as long as you might intend to go.  Why do I say that? Because in the beginning, for most women, breastfeeding is very difficult.  I know it is a natural thing, but it does take some getting used to and it can be extremely painful.  If you are not determined to do it and you are in the “try it” mentality, you will definitely give up on it before you have a chance to get the hang of it.  Trust me, the women who are determined often give up or think about giving up often in the process because it is just that difficult.  

2)  Get out of your mind that you may not have enough milk or that you aren’t producing enough milk.  Did you know that according to research only 4% of women truly have a low supply and there is nothing they can do about it?  This means that mostly all of the women I’ve run into who say that they just dried up more than likely were just uneducated about how to get the most out of their supply.  No worries.  I’m not blaming them.  This was not their fault!  Our cultures are not very breastfeeding-friendly as I mentioned earlier.  The key is to get help as often as you can.  Talk to lactation consultants constantly while in the hospital.  See them and call them even when you are home.  I also joined a local La Leche League group where the leaders were voluntarily on-call to answer my questions when I needed help.  

3)  Try to make sure you have a support system that is going to help you stick with it and get through the tough times.  My husband was awesome.  The thing about that was, we were both new to the whole idea of breastfeeding.  Neither one of us had experience being around others who had done it before so I was blessed to have gotten a pediatrician for my son who was tough and said “just do it.”  She reminded me of all the women who did it before me who got through the pain of it in the beginning and she said, “it’s the least I can do for the health of me and my baby.”   She gave me that tough conversation when I wanted to quit and told me what I needed to hear and didn’t let me give up when I wanted to because she knew I really wanted to breastfeed.  

4)  Trust in how your body was made.  So many people are quick to assume that we aren’t making enough milk when the babies are cranky and crying.  Babies cry.  It might sound stressful when it’s happening but they do.  The way our bodies work is if we are constantly nursing baby, we will keep producing milk.  Supplementing with formula is almost never necessary to make sure baby is getting enough to eat and what it does is tell your body to stop producing more milk.  

5)  Let’s say you are noticing a dip in your supply because you went with the advice of people around you and started supplementing.  You can actually get your supply back up by just continuing to put baby at the breast.  Pumping too early when your supply isn’t regulated to baby’s needs will most likely cause supply issues.  For at least the first 4-8 weeks you need to keep baby directly at the breast.  The pump cannot get the milk out of the breast as well as baby can. 

6)  Keep your nipples moist.  I never washed my nipple area with soap for approximately the first 3 months because the soap actually dries them out.  I also used the lanolin from the hospital.  A nipple cream that was even better was Mother Love Nipple Cream.  Both of these creams do not need to be wiped off before baby nurses.  You can also leave a little bit of milk around the breast and let it air dry after a feeding.  This heals your nipples from when they are sore and could be bleeding.  

7)  You can alleviate sore nipples with a nipple shield.  Get help with this if you don’t know how to use it for sure.  But it is great to use a couple of times during a day to give your nipples a break when they are bleeding.  I personally never used one, but I know plenty of people who have and it was a lifesaver. :)

8)  Don’t be ashamed to nurse in public.  This is something that I was so concerned about because sometimes people talk about instances where a mom was asked to leave or something extreme like that.  When I had concerns, I asked a large group of women who had been breastfeeding for a long time and all of them told me that it really is not as serious as people make it seem.  Occasionally, they told me a few of them had gotten a stare or a look but no one really said much.  Often, they told me they had looks of endearment from other moms who probably had been there done that before.  All we have to do is wear layers so that if we do need to lift our shirts, we have a cami or something similar underneath.  But there are many breastfeeding clothes out there too that support you doing it discreetly, especially if your little nursling is opposed to nursing covers like my 16 month old.  

9)  Consider breastfeeding longer than even a year.  There are an astounding amount of benefits for mom and baby the longer you breastfeed.  The World Health Organization actually recommends breastfeeding for the first 2 years of your baby’s life.  Once baby is up to about 12 months or so, you will notice a shift in how often he or she nurses for sure so it most likely won’t be as often as a newborn, but continuing that bond with your little one through breastfeeding can me more rewarding than you think.  Check out some benefits here! 

10)  Don’t feel guilty if you are reading this and you did stop earlier than you would have liked to or if you never breastfed but always wanted to.  My only charge to you would be to either try again next time, if it will be a next time for you, or perhaps point another mom in the direction to learn more and get the support she needs so she will be able to do what’s best for her and her baby. :)

Do you have anything that you would want to tell women about breastfeeding?  Did you learn something new about it?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!