Holiday Firsts Baby Month Stickers Review

I thought these stickers were SO cool! We’ve all seen the monthly stickers you can use for your new baby’s photos, right?! Well… these are for your baby’s first holidays! I wish I had been able to get these when Bird was first born so I could have done her first Christmas and New Year’s, but unfortunately I did not. I also missed Groundhog Day but I honestly forgot that holiday until February 3rd, ha!

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You get all the major holidays including New Year’s, 4th of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas as well as some minor holidays including Groundhog Day, Valentine’s, Father’s and Mother’s Day, etc. You can see all the images below.

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For Bird’s 2 month birthday I took some Valentine’s Day photos as well, I used the Valentine’s Day sticker stuck directly onto her onsie as well as on the blanket beside her. It was super simple and I was able to place the sticker back on the original sheet so that I can use it again for Mustard Seed Baby #4 someday! My only concern is that when Bird gets older I can totally see her ripping the sticker off and possibly apart!

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How cute is she? She doesn’t mind having her photo taken, unlike her older siblings… though I imagine that will change when she realizes how many pictures mommy likes to take!

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These are high quality stickers, the colors are stellar and the stickers are the perfect size for photos like these. They have TONS of different monthly stickers to choose from as well, including pregnancy stickers! Beyond that, icustomlabel has everything from cupcake toppers to gift tags and candles! So, if you’re looking for baby/pregnancy stickers, or some products for an upcoming celebration, I highly recommend icustomlabel!

Boogie is 4…. and 1 Month

That’s right… I’m over a month late on Boogie’s birthday update. Mom FAIL. My only excuse is that having three awesome kids keeps me super duper busy! You’ll forgive me right, Boog?

Anyways, so, yes! My sweet Boogie turned FOUR on December 28th! I can’t believe it! She’s getting SO SO big. So this will be an update from her 4 years of life and a little update from these past few weeks. I’ll start with telling you a little about how my sweet girl has been doing, and then… yep. You knew it. PHOTOBOMB! MSM loves photos, so you know there are going to be a TON on this post.

This past year I have seen so much change in my oldest princess. Not only has she grown physically, but the change I’ve seen in her heart has been amazing. She’s getting to know Jesus and she’s EXCITED about it. That makes this mommy’s heart SOAR. Lots of caps in this post, but I’m just so thrilled to be this beautiful little girl’s mommy. She is so incredibly smart, she’s learned so much this past year and is just beyond anxious to start learning more and more. She has become an amazing big sister, she’s absolutely above the moon about having a baby sister, she loves to pick out her outfits and cuddle with her. Boogie actually annoys the pee outta me wanting to hold her ALL the time, but she’s figuring things out! She and Bubby are best of friends and they get in some pretty insane bickering matches, but I think that comes with the territory of having a little brother (I would know… Dyl and I had some doozies growing up… and maybe still do…). Enough talk, let’s move on to some pictures!

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My baby girl is FOUR. And as you can see from that last picture… she’s now a tiny beautiful ballerina. I cannot wait to see her blossom and bloom over the next several years. Boogie, I love you to the moon and back, and back again. You are my sunshine on the cloudiest of days and the precious baby that God chose to make me a mother. I am SO grateful for you and your loving little heart. Happy (late) birthday my love, I can’t wait to see what this year brings!

Family Update

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I thought it might be about time to do a little update, lately all I’ve been posting is reviews and giveaways, but honestly that’s all I have the energy and time for! If you don’t blog… then you probably don’t know how much time it takes to keep one going. I’ll be back in full swing again at some point, but right now I’m focusing mainly on my family and reviewing some products here and there, so keep an eye out for some great giveaways (there’s one live right NOW!)

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Baby Bird is 1 month old as of yesterday… how did that happen so quickly? She is so incredibly precious, she’s super laid back, easy going, and she handles the craziness of our household so well. She, just like every other baby, gets fussy now and then (like now… she’s currently wrapped tight to my chest and listening to “Baby Got Colic” while I type), but really… she’s just perfect.

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Bubby is his normal, ornery and naughty self. I love that kid, he constantly keeps me on my toes and is the BEST at getting belly laughs out of anyone around him. He’s also, and I say this with SO MUCH affection, kind of a turd. This child already knows how to get on his big sister’s nerves, and let me tell you… he is a professional. He tortures that poor girl and finds it HILARIOUS, taking her dolls, throwing her toys, pinching her, just being downright naughty. BOYS. Boogie will figure things out eventually, but I’m afraid Bubby may regret these days eventually when he realizes he has TWO sisters to gang up on him! Uh oh! No, really he’s a fantastic little boy and he absolutely lights up my life.

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Boogie, my sweet, beautiful Boogie turned 4 last week. I need to post a birthday update for her as well, I’ll probably work on that this weekend. You think Bubby’s birthday update had a ton of pictures… you just wait! Boogie is trying to figure this whole “big girl” thing out, meaning she’s testing boundaries, learning how to cop an attitude (ay yi yi), and is trying to find her way in this world. It’s hard on her and it’s hard on mommy, that’s for sure. I’m trying some new things in the hopes that maybe, just maybe, things will go a little smoother. My hope is that she and I will have a good relationship throughout these many trials and battles… Lord willing. Anyways, Boogie is super excited about trying some new things for school with me, she is smart as a whip and has been asking to learn how to read, so we’re starting that, I’m also creating some workbox drawers for her, and she also received a “big girl” Tag Reader/pen for Christmas and has really enjoyed using that during Bubby’s naptime. I can’t wait to start posting some more home school posts about all of those fun things!

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J has been at his new job for about a month and 2 weeks now, he’s so much happier and I’m so glad for him. I dislike how far he is from us (almost an hour commute, and it may be an hour or more commute when they place him in his own facility), but hopefully this will be his forever job and will create amazing opportunities for all of us in the future. We’re praying that they place him in his own facility by next month so we can get into a normal routine around here.

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As for me, well… I’m just doing the mommy thing, taking care of my babies, my hubby and home. Not much time to do anything else, but honestly I’m good with that right now. The moments when things ARE quiet and I’m not overloaded with chores and tasks to be accomplished, I’ve relished in having a new baby in my arms.

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I mentioned in a recent Facebook status on my private profile that I can understand why Michelle Duggar kept having baby after baby after baby… they are pure bliss. I think I finally have J convinced that one more wouldn’t be so bad, I think I’ll feel like our family is complete after that! And I’m secretly (or not so secretly) hoping for another little girl… I’m not so sure I could handle another Bubby, ha!

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That’s it for now, like I said, things are busy busy around here, but I’ll be around. Look for a (late) birthday update on Boogie and some more reviews/giveaways soon! Until next time, God Bless!

Baby Bird is HERE!

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She’s here! She’s here! She’s here! Sweet Baby Bird decided that December 8th was to be her birthday, so she finally arrived at 40 weeks and 2 days gestation!

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All night prior I had menstrual like cramping, it was uncomfortable… but more annoying than anything else. I didn’t think anything of it because it didn’t feel anything like the beginnings of labor I had with Bubby. I tossed and turned, drank water, used the restroom… nothing helped so I just dealt with the cramping and tried to sleep. I had my 40 week appointment scheduled for 10:30am and thankfully, Janelle and I had planned ahead for her to tag along with her youngest two and my two children in case I DID go into labor. Seriously… we couldn’t have planned that any better.

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The plan was for my midwife to strip my membranes if I was dilated enough so that we could hopefully kick start labor, otherwise if I didn’t go on my own I would have to be induced the following Friday (tomorrow)… and I DID NOT want that. I had to be induced with Boogie and I ended up with an epidural instead of the natural birth that I wanted. So, anyways, we made it to my appointment (and all morning I had continued having the menstrual cramping, it was slightly more painful though nothing I couldn’t handle… it truly wasn’t more painful than my real menstrual cramping is) and Janelle hung out with the kids in the car while I went in.

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My BP was high, which is abnormal for me (and had only been high once before a few weeks prior), and they started me in the room with a NST since my midwife was running behind. I was starting to wonder now if my cramping was finally turning into something because the NST machine was picking them up as contractions, so I texted Janelle to let her know what I thought. A little later my midwife came in and she had the “look”. You know the “look”? The one that says that she doesn’t want to give you bad news, but it is bad news?

 

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Basically what it came down to was that due to my elevated blood pressure at this particular appointment, and the appointment a few weeks prior, I was at high risk for preeclampsia and was officially diagnosed with gestational hypertension. Because of that she wanted to go ahead and send me to the hospital to be induced, HOWEVER, because I was already contracting she was willing to go ahead with our original plan first, to strip my membranes. Once that was done she said we could head back towards Janelle’s house to walk, eat, and then head to the hospital in the hopes I wouldn’t need any other methods to be induced.

At that point I wanted Janelle to hear all of this so that she could help me explain the details to Justin, not only did I think he would need her reassurance but I was kind of shocked that all of this was happening. Sweet Janelle… she was such a trooper, lol. She herded her two 4-year-olds, my 3 year-old and 2-year old into the office to be with me, thankfully all of our kids are pretty well behaved and were GREAT!

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When my midwife went to strip my membranes my water broke… if you could have seen her face! I had been feeling some mild pressure that morning, so I’m thinking that maybe my bags were bulging and therefore broke when she began stripping my membranes! So of course, our plans changed again! If you remember Bubby’s birth story (you can read it here, and Boogie’s here) than you know that he came very quickly, so quickly in fact that we had about 4 back up plans in case we couldn’t make it to our choice hospital or if J couldn’t make it to be with me. (Not gonna lie, I had major anxiety over that!) Now that my water was broken we knew we didn’t have a LOT of time. I had already called J and by the time we were out of the appointment he was waiting in the waiting area for us. We decided that our best plan of action was for Janelle to take all of our kids back home with her, she’d have my mother in law meet her to get my kids and she’d make plans for her brood so that she could head back to the hospital to be with us. (She was our support person or “doula” if you will for Boogie and Bubby’s births…. as well as being their godmother). J and I needed to grab a bite to eat and then planned to head straight to the hospital, even if it meant just walking around the building until I was ready to go to labor and delivery.

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By the time we made it from the midwife’s office to Chick Fil A my contractions had already increased in intensity and timing, and then by the time we made it from there to the hospital I knew we needed to head on up. I was hesitant because I didn’t want to go up too early, but then I was also worried that if we didn’t, we might have a baby in the parking deck… because really. Bubby came FAST.

We made it up to labor and delivery, I was still able to walk and talk through my contractions so I don’t think my nurse really thought I was serious about this going quickly like my last baby. She definitely wasn’t in a hurry to get things going. When my midwife had checked my cervix, prior to my waters breaking, I had been 5cm dilated. When the nurse checked me in labor and delivery I was only 6cm. I was shocked… I thought there was NO WAY I had only dilated 1 cm! This is when I started to become fearful, I was NOT trying to “birth without fear” anymore.

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I told J that I may very well want an epidural this time, I was giving up on myself, I was fearful, my best friend hadn’t made it to the room yet… I was freaking out y’all! My nurse decided to go ahead and start my IV and take my blood for the tests they needed before giving an epidural, but to do so I had to lay down. Whomever thought it was a good idea to make a laboring woman lay on her back during contractions is an idiot. Seriously. Stupid stupid stupid. It makes your contractions even worse, you can’t rock or sway or do anything to get through them. It is pure torture. And while I really did love our nurse by the end of the afternoon, she didn’t do such a great job at trying to get my hep lock in… I ended up with a goose egg and a giant bruise from the two places on my right hand she tried to do, and then finally another nurse was able to get it in on my left hand. Once that was finally done I was able to get up again and BAM… pressure.

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I asked the nurse to check me again, I may have begged her to do it quickly because my contractions only had a small bit of peace in between, and I was then at 7cm. In my mind I’m thinking… this is happening too slowly! But in reality, I was dilating VERY quickly, but I was in so much pain that I didn’t realize how quickly things were going. That was a major difference between Bubby and Bird’s birth. With Bubby there were NO breaks between contractions, it was incredibly intense, but not as painful as expected. This time there WAS a small bit of time between contractions, but I think because of those breaks it felt more painful than intense.

Just a few minutes after that, the pressure I was feeling increased and the anesthesiologist walks in with the paperwork for the epidural… I looked at him and said, “Um yea… we don’t need you anymore!” I think he was a little shocked, because not only was I saying “buh-bye” to him but I was pretty much naked at this point. Goodbye modesty! J hurried him out the door and I was BEGGING to be allowed in the shower. I WANTED that heat on my back, but J and the nurses were right in thinking it wasn’t a good idea. Not only were we very close to having a baby, but I was already sweltering from the heat. (I wonder if my BP contributed to that).

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The only thing that helped me through my contractions was rocking my hips and swaying, occasionally I’d wrap my arms around J’s neck for support but generally it felt better to hold the side of the bed and bend my knees slightly while rocking. My body started feeling pushy and just like with Bubby, this is when I started to feel weak, shaky and like I might pass out from exhaustion. Birthing is a LOT of work. The OB and residents that were in the room (once again, there wasn’t a midwife available at the hospital) finally talked me into getting back on the bed with me on my knees hugging the back of the bed (exactly as I did with Bubby) and my body was pushing. I can’t really remember much at that point in regards to the people around me. I remember asking J to pray for me, and to pray out loud because Janelle still hadn’t made it to the room. I remember one OB or resident or nurse… I don’t even know… telling me to remind myself that I was ok (and I may have snapped at her that I KNEW I was ok). I also kept asking where Janelle was… and right before she came I said, “She’s going to miss it!” My body was pushing and I felt the “ring of fire”, I still don’t really think that’s an accurate name for it though. And I actually thought someone was pushing back on my cervix around her head, but apparently they weren’t… she was just coming out REALLY fast! I literally pushed for only 10 minutes and she was OUT.

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I couldn’t believe she was already here! 10 minutes of pushing?! They asked if J wanted to cut the cord and I told him to go ahead, I wasn’t thinking obviously because we wanted to wait until the cord has finished pulsating… but I was kind of out of it and in a complete euphoric state. She was beautiful, she had a perfectly round head, big blue eyes, and the most precious cry… she’s perfect. I got to immediately hold her skin to skin and finally rest. I had done it… again. Despite the fear I had felt in the beginning, I did it. We arrived on the labor and delivery floor at 12:40ish and she arrived at 2:22pm. 7 pounds and 5 ounces of cuteness, 20.25 inches long!

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Janelle walked in at right around 2:30pm, she JUST missed it! I hate that she wasn’t there, but I’m SO incredibly thankful that she was able to help care for my older two so that I was able to make it to the hospital in time. If we had to have taken the children to my mother in laws, we never would have made it and she would have been born in the car… yikes!

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We are all madly in love, Boogie is the ultimate big sister… she calls herself the “little momma” and is constantly asking to hold and touch her baby sister. Bubby isn’t 100% sure about her, he definitely loves her and likes to touch her and sing to her… but he is having a harder time with the transition. He has been my baby all his life and he isn’t understanding that Baby Bird needs some of mommy’s undivided attention at times. He’ll get there though, and I know he’s going to be an outstanding big brother.

Baby Bird is a champion nursling, she HATES being swaddled and HATES lying in anything other than someone’s arms… and she LOVES being nudey! She is most definitely related to my Boogie and Bubby!

Thanks for reading! I’ll be posting some reviews and giveaways here and there for the next few weeks but personal posts will be slim pickings while I enjoy adjusting to life with 3 beautiful babies! God Bless!

 

Holiday Shopping with Canon!

Best Buy is the ultimate destination for the latest cameras to capture your holiday memories. The Canon EOS Rebel T5i is one of the best-selling DSLRs. This camera makes advanced photography easy and fun, and gives you exceptional image quality, along with a host of features to enhance your creative expression.
•      Capture Hollywood caliber full HD video
•      Continuous autofocus while taking HD video
•      Features an 18.0-megapixel CMOS sensor and a DIGIC 5 image processor to ensure vivid, crystal-clear images.
•      The 3″ vari-angle touch screen simplifies navigation.

 

All the photos you see on my blog, at least the vast majority of them, are taken with a Canon Rebel XS. I’m a huge Canon fan, I think they are easy to use and learn! These cameras, Canon in general, are great gifts for families, teenagers or young adults who are interested in trying out some more professional photography or for anyone really interested in dabbling in photography. The picture quality, even if you choose to stick with the automatic setting, is awesome… I really can’t say anything bad about these cameras!

The one major difference I notice just from looking at this particular camera (the Canon Rebel EOS T5i) is that it has the screen that pops out AND you can take videos. That’s a really neat feature! Save $150 on the Canon EOS Rebel T5i at Best Buy*. Visit Best Buy to learn more. (*offer valid 12/7-12/20). 

Do you love twitter parties? Best Buy is hosting a Canon Twitter Party on Thursday December 18th at 7pm CST. Feel free to join this party for a chance to receive Best Buy gift cards and other great prizes. Tweet #HintingSeason with your top gifts that you want this Holiday from Best Buy.

The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free