WE’VE BEEN PARENTS FOR 3 MONTHS!!! SHE’S STILL ALIVE!!! *pats self on back*
As you probably have noticed, I have not been blogging much this year. Pregnancy was hard. Parenthood is harder (no surprise).
My Current Life
The hardest thing is getting more than 30 minutes to myself that isn’t needing to be spent on something NECESSARY for our continued existence…like peeing, feeding our pets, scheduling for Crystal’ Cozy Care Pet Sitting, doing actual pet sitting jobs, showering occasionally, staying in contact with our support network of family and friends, payroll for the pet sitting business, shoving food into my mouth, etc.
All of that is accomplished between the baby’s naps, play sessions, SMILE-A-THONS (she’s freaking social smiling and trying to giggle already!!!), and coo sessions (she wants to talk soooooo bad!!!). It’s around 11pm at night when she’s down for the count, I do a last round of the necessaries until midnight, and then I crash until 5-6am when she wakes up. Repeat 7 days a week.
All of that said, I LOVE BEING HER MOM. Baby BFS is awesome. Tries so hard to communicate in whatever ways she can pull off. Wants to sit up and be in the middle of everything. Spunky as hell. Refuses my nipples and demands her boob juice via bottles.
I swear she gives me the stinky eye anytime I offer my breasts at this point. Like “Mom…I love you but that is just not right. Keep yourself to yourself, thank you very much. Where is my faster food delivery device?”.
So I am an exclusive pumper (moo). 🙂 She’s a cute human puppy.
Stuff We Actually Used Regularly During the First 3 Months
And in the last 3 months, I have been making mental notes for all of you. Whether you are going to have babies of your own or just need good gift ideas, here are the things we seriously use:
Spectra S1 Plus Breast Pump – the one with a rechargeable battery
Hands Free Pumping Bra
4 Nursing Bras
2 Nursing shirts
Bra pads so I don’t constantly leak through
6 Dr. Brown 4 ounce bottles
3 Dr. Brown bottle travel lids
4 Size 1 Dr. Brown nipples
Breastmilk freezer bags
Grass drying rack with a few tree-like attachments
Ready-to-use formula bottles as backup
Orthodontist-approved pacifier(s) though she only uses them in 2 minute spurts once in a while
Two comfy robes (one to use while the other is in the wash)
10 Newborn onesies
10 0-3 Month onesies
10 3 Month and 3-6 Month onesies
5 Newborn PJ’s
5 0-3 Month PJ’s
5-10 3 Month and/or 3-6 Month PJ’s
Hazardous Waste and Meds
Diapers (only like a big pack of Newborns and then two big boxes of Size 1’s and now a big box of Size 2’s so far)
Diaper wipes or hand towels and a water spray bottle
Portable basket to use for diaper stuff so you can do changes anywhere in the house
Butt paste for diaper rash if it pops up
Off brand Lotrimin AF from Dollar Tree if yeast blisters pop up
Laundry hamper from the Dollar Tree
Baby Tylenol though we haven’t had to use it yet
Vitamin D Drops if Solely Breastmilk
Nose Frida (yeah, they seem gross but they really work and you don’t eat snot)
2-3 Mats that you can just plop down for diaper changes or floor play time
Spit up blankets like the hospital uses
Cloth diaper inserts since they make excellent burp cloths (Hubby says that this is the one thing that you won’t think about that you absolutely must have. Don’t get tricked into fancy burp cloths.)
1 digital thermometer
Fisher-Price Auto Rock n Play
2 fitted crib sheets
2 water proof crib mattress protectors
Black out curtains
Bassinet (either light or with wheels – something easy to move around)
Chest of drawers
Curved changing table pillow pad thing so they don’t roll off
Other Hot Air Balloon Decorations
Google Home Mini that we use to play white noise in her room or Pandora
Books – board books with bright colors or high contrast images are great at this age
Baby Boppie pillow to keep her inclined to eat next to me or for play time
Foam puzzle mat squares to make a padded area in the nursery or main areas
Toy box (she’s just now starting to play with toys like the rattles)
Light-show elephant that projects the stars and a planet on the walls and ceiling.
Baby bath with the inclined place to lay them
1 bottle of Johnson & Johnson Tip to Toe Bath Wash will last us forever
1 little baby brush helps brush away cradle cap flakes
1 set of baby nail clippers for when she is asleep and the talons can be trimmed
1 nail file for any times clippers scare the crap out of you
Storage solutions (we used plastic bins)
The book, Eat Sleep Poop, has been the most helpful with all things baby
Easy to install car seat with great reviews and two bases
Mirror to put on the headrest of the car seat chair so you can see your kid is still alive
Comfortable-to-Carry Diaper Bag
Stroller that a car seat snaps into OR a body carrier you enjoy using
Stuff We DIDN’T Use
And here is the stuff that was just a waste for us – either never used or used only once or twice and ignored:
Socks. We just don’t use baby socks. She just kicked them off and doesn’t want anything on her feet anyway.
Hats. Same thing.
Hair bows thus far.
100+ outfits. We were given soooo much. It was extremely thoughtful and amazing. But she grows so fast that we have literally outgrown 100+ clothing items before ever wearing them at all.
Wipe warmer…yeah, she just has to deal with cold wipes. Doesn’t seem to mind.
Bottle warmer…yeah, freshly squeezed boob juice or right out of the fridge works just fine for her.
Tried three types of strap-on-the-baby carriers but the front wearers, they hurt our backs. We’re waiting to try again when we can strap her to our backs.
How NOT to Go Broke
So, how do we have a list of like 60+ things that we actually used over the first 3 months and we aren’t completely broke? We have an amazing support network and I rarely buy new stuff.
We are truly appreciative of everyone close in our lives. Our families, friends, neighbors, and even pet sitting clients gifted us with new and hand-me-down awesome stuff that truly covered a giant chunk of the list. We didn’t buy any furniture other than the book shelves and some organizing containers. We also won’t have to buy diapers for at least her first 6 months if not longer. We’ve used about half of the diapers we were gifted so far. I need to exchange some unopened Size 1’s for Size 2’s or 3’s soon. I’ve been told that Target and Walmart will allow that for any brands they carry.
Asking for what you need is a great way of actually receiving what you will use.
I’ve heard some people don’t want “used” things like clothing and furniture. Well…yep, you’ll spend more and that’s totally up to you. 🙂 We definitely don’t mind hand-me-downs!
Anything that wasn’t gifted to us and works just fine used, I hunted down on:
Facebook in my local groups
Other kid stuff resale stores like Once Upon a Child and Kid 2 Kid
For example, all of the burp blankets and cloth diaper inserts that my husband adores were bought in one big box for $20 from someone local on Facebook Merchant. Bags and bags of hand me down clothes were gifted to us from neighbors on my community Facebook group and by a couple of my friends. I bought the changing table padded mat and a large foam puzzle floor mat of the ABC’s and numbers for $5 each off of Nextdoor.com. I spent $60 on a stroller, play seat, and a few big play toys that she can use in the next 3-12 months. I spent another $50 on the $225-at-Walmart car seat stroller using Facebook Merchant. And $40 went to neighbors on Facebook for a $120-on-Amazon baby gate system that will come in handy as soon as she can get around on her own.
So…yeah, Baby BFS is healthy and happy! My hubby and I are falling into new routines. I’m enjoying the hell out of her these past couple of months…just had to survive the first one, lol. I am loving watching her experience everything for the first time…so many firsts! I can see why people kept saying that parenthood was awesome. I can also fully understand why some people prefer not to ever go through this. It’s like a bootcamp for a job that lasts forever, so you better love it because you can’t quit. 😉
FYI: I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year. I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home. If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!). Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!