Category Archives: Parenting & Family

Out and About: Better #Babywearing with our lillebaby® COMPLETE™

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I had a carrier for my first child, and I knew the benefits of babywearing but I really never did it. Maybe it was because my husband and I fought over who got to hold him all the time, or maybe we were just intimidated by our baby carrier, with all its straps and buckles. Whatever the reason, it worked out OK for us. But this time? This time is WAY different.

I kind of knew it would be, since I’d have to adjust to having a newborn along with an energetic 3-year-old. I’m also running a bigger household and no longer heading out to the office each day (it’s still weird to say it!) I spend all my waking–and even sleeping–hours with these kids, and once in a while, I just really need to get something done. Babywearing has been an absolute gift from the heavens this time, and I owe much of our peace these days to lillebaby!

lillebaby

I was given the opportunity to review the lillebaby COMPLETE in warm orange and cream, shown here. Without knowing much about the carrier beyond the good reviews I’d heard, I chose it based on color alone. I love the warm orange tone, and it looked like the perfect carrier for fall.

lillebabycarrier

Well, once I actually got my hands on my new carrier, I realized that the color was only one of a million things to love. It’s sturdy, well made and comfortably padded, with great contours and shoulder straps that are thick enough for support, but not so thick that they get in the way or look too bulky.

lillebabycarrierstraps

Now, I could write you a book about everything this carrier offers…but lillebaby has done a fantastic job with their extremely thorough and user-friendly website.  All the different carries, safety information, and features of the lillebaby COMPLETE are listed there, along with info on how to breastfeed while babywearing and other helpful tips.  If you’re thinking of buying a lillebaby, I encourage you to check out lillebaby.com – I’m sure you’ll find every answer you could possibly need there.

But I will tell you about some of the features that we, personally, found very helpful and valuable when using our lillebaby COMPLETE.

What I Love:

1. Most importantly, I recommend this carrier because it truly is a complete solution for babywearing. It’s the only carrier you’ll need from infancy to toddlerhood, and your baby will be comfortable and safe in it (and you’ll be comfortable, too!) the entire time you’re using it. Right now we’re only using the front carry/face in position, but you can wear it on your back, hip or front with baby facing in, out or in the fetal position. All adjustments are quick and easy and you don’t need a degree in engineering to figure it all out. (Yay for easy!)

lillebabycarrier

2.  As parents, we’re always learning, and I definitely learned something new from lillebaby. There is a period of time when nearly all babies become too big for the infant insert (which puts them in the fetal position) while still being a bit too small to wrap their legs around a parent’s waist. This is known as the “babywearing gap” and usually falls between 3–6 months, depending on both baby and parents’ sizes and preferences. Lillebaby has this problem solved with their adjustable seat. The width adjusts to provide ergonomic positioning in every carrier setting. This feature is recommended by the Hip Dysplasia Institute because it allows baby’s legs to spread apart naturally, without being forced at all, reducing the risk of hip dysplasia and allowing healthy development during the high risk months (0–6).

lillebaby carrier positions

3. The adjustable width seat could, in fact, save your babywearing experience altogether, since many babies express discomfort during the “babywearing gap”, leaving their parents to assume they just don’t like being in the carrier. When I read this, it was like a light came on. Who would ever be able to figure this out? I know I never would have thought of it without the help of the experts at lillebaby.

4. Comfort! There are countless comfort features found on the lillebaby COMPLETE, and I just don’t think other carriers can compare. From an optional lumbar support and padded straps to accessories like stirrups, lillebaby truly has comfort covered. (See all the comfort features here.) I can attest to this firsthand, since I wore my lillebaby with 17-lb Elliette from 9am to 5:30pm at MommyCon! We were both still smiling by the end of the day, and I had NO discomfort whatsoever.

lillebabycarriers

5. The main reason I’m using our lillebaby COMPLETE nonstop? Ellie is just SO happy in it. I know that she’s safe and supported because the carrier holds her snugly and there’s no slipping or shifting, but I can tell that she feels secure, too. Nearly every single time I take her to the grocery store, Target, a random walk, anywhere, she lays her head down on my chest and falls asleep. It’s the best feeling ever. I can also nurse her in it very easily, especially with the attached sleeping hood that keeps her from getting distracted. Had I known it was possible walk through the grocery store nursing my baby with my hand free to push the cart, I’m sure I would have been doing a lot more babywearing with my first!

6. As a company, lillebaby wants the best for your baby in more ways than one. Learn more about their commitment to green practices and sustainability here. After all, someday this world is going to belong to these babies we’re carrying, right?

What would I change?

Ok, so a review isn’t a review without a few cons, right? Well, I’ll say this: I’d love a pocket! I really, really missed having a pocket for keys, cash, whatever, because I just don’t like to carry a purse while I’m babywearing. (Or at all, really.) So yeah. A pocket would put this thing over the top. And if I had it to do all over again, I might choose the more lightweight, breathable mesh lillebaby COMPLETE Airflow carrier  for summer. But now that we’re headed into fall, this carrier isn’t leaving my side. I guarantee it!

Thinking about a lillebaby of your own? Order from lillebaby.com and use code ABCGP20 to save 20% off your purchase! (Valid through 9/30/13) I think I’m getting some teething pads!
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Disclosure: I received a product sample at no charge to facilitate this review. As always, I was under no obligation to provide a positive review and all opinions are my own and honest based on my experience with the product mentioned above. 

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Filed under Baby Guide, Parenting & Family, Product & Service Reviews

Wordless Wednesday: The challenges of this new life

Life is different now.

Every day, I make a list. At the end of every day, I find myself frustrated by all the things left on it.

I’m failing.

Work is piling up. Mail is piling up. Emails need to be answered.

And the vegetables don’t wait. As I stand by my sink, snipping the ends off purple beans so I can blanch and freeze them for winter, I can see one of the two drainage streams in our yard. They stretch as far as I can see from my window, and they’re so overgrown with weeds that you can’t see the water in them. This is a problem, because rainy season is coming and if they’re blocked, we’re just asking for our property to flood.

creek

Homesteading requires a ton of maintenance. There is no downtime, and we haven’t even turned our property into a homestead yet. It’s just a really big lot with a garden on it. But with my new business, the kids at 3 years and 6 months old, my husband’s overtime…it’s taking all we have to just barely keep up. And the things that need to be done? They don’t care about how hard we try. Whether we’re worn out, tired, or not in the mood, they still need to be done just the same.

The ditches are on the list. They need to be taken care of soon, and it will take an entire weekend to clear them out. But for now, I look down at my daughter with her brand new tooth, trying to perfect her downdog pose on the floor (she is so determined to crawl any minute) and I keep on snipping, trying not to look at the clock.

Because one thing at a time, mama. One thing, one day, one week at a time. You’re doing a good job, even if it doesn’t always feel like it.

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Filed under Green Living, Home & Garden, Parenting & Family, The Everyday, Uncategorized

The First Years® Breastflow® Memory Pump – On Sale at Target Now!

In honor of National Breastfeeding Month, I’d like to share some info I was given about a great breastpump that is on sale at Target now – The First Years® Breastflow® Memory Pump.  For the sake of disclosure, I will clarify that I have not used this particular pump, but I think the data storage feature could be really beneficial to lots of moms who have trouble pumping.

Read on for details!

The First Years Breastflow Memory Pump

The First Years® Breastflow® Memory Pump is designed to make breastfeeding more comfortable and efficient. It features an easy-to-use digital touch screen that automatically tracks and stores data for up to 10 sessions, automatically recording important information including the date and time, suction and speed. For a complete profile, mom can enter milk volume for each session. Plus, the unique handle allows double pumping with one hand. Breastflow Memory Pump comes with a custom designed tote bag, plus a cooler bag with removable ice pack, two 5oz. Breastflow bottles with storage lids, 2 sizes of Flexi-fit™ breast shields and a rechargeable battery pack for ultimate portability. MSRP: $179.99, now available in Target stores nationwide and on Target.com.   

 TFY Memory Pump now on sale at Target

From Aug. 18 to Aug. 24, all The First Years products – including the new Breastflow Memory Pump – will be on sale for 10% off on Target.com

WIN IT!

From now through Sept. 1st, Enter to win a The First Years Breastflow Memory Pump on Facebook!

Facebook Sweepstakes

Signature*Disclosure: I was not compensated in any way for this post.

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Filed under Breastfeeding

MommyCon Philly 2013: A Recap

Are you following me yet on Instagram?

If so, you probably saw a few pics from MommyCon last Sunday. If not, well head over there and do it now! (I’m wendykate99 and I’ll follow you back!)

So, MommyCon. How fun, right? There really was no question that I’d love the event. Babywearing, cloth diapering, my online idols all in one place. It was even pretty close to me – just a few hours away in Philly. Easy day trip.

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And I didn’t have to go alone! For a minute I thought it would just be me and my baby girl making the trek to Philly, but then Emily from Mama Days got her hands on a ticket and we picked her up on the way. I’m so glad because I think it was much more fun as a trio! Continue reading

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Filed under Baby Guide, Breastfeeding, Cloth Diapering, Family Fun, Parenting & Family

Kids’ Activity: Indoor Butterfly Hunt

When it comes to parenting, there are two things I know for sure. 

1. Bored kids do not equal happy kids, so when a rainy day hits, the day can go south quickly.

2. Browsing Pinterest for creative ways to fill the day can make your self-esteem as a mom go south just as quickly. I mean, we all have our genius moments, but when I’m in a hurry to occupy my kids on the spot with what I already have in my home, I don’t want something over the top. (I feel inadequate enough already because I don’t bake in mason jars.)

So, without further ado, I give you:

The Easiest and Least Pinterest-worthy Kids’ Activity Ever!

ButterflyKidsActivity

Continue reading

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Filed under Crafts & DIY, Family Fun, Parenting & Family