Friday, February 28

Four Months Old.

Striped Old Navy Dress//Headband

This little nugget turned 4 months old today... WHAT!? She is the happiest, most animated baby around {I'm not saying that just because I'm her mama either- other people say it too!}. We really can't believe that she is ours to raise and be responsible for. It's one of the most humbling experiences. The fact that the Lord has chosen us and given this gift to nurture and grow- it is unreal. We do not did not feel like we were ready to be parents, but each day that passes we feel like we are slowly being transformed! We love our new role and life as parents, and honestly can't remember what we did before having her.

It's amazing that it was this time A YEAR AGO that we found out we were preggerz!
But more about that later! 

Each month we have written a little note to Sullivan, all about what she has accomplished. Eventually it will all be compiled into a baby photo book like this

Four Months
You are still our happy baby! You don't fuss much at all, but if you do it's very easy to calm you. Your doctor says you are a petite, healthy baby. You are weighing in at 12.6 pounds. You love it when Mama and Daddy make silly faces and sounds. You have started taking a nice, looong morning nap {2 hours}!  You are drooling EVERYWHERE and we cannot keep your hands out of your mouth {you choke your self with them on accident}! Your jumperoo has officially become your favorite toy, even though your feet barely touch the ground. You really enjoy being outside and going on walks. Bath times with daddy is still one of your favorite times.
We love you soo so much Sullie Girl. 

Officially done with pictures. 

Sunday, February 23

Month Two: Need-to-Haves

1. Burt's Bees Baby Bee Shampoo & Wash: It smells SO great! After we give Sullivan a bath we always spend sometime smelling her {seriously}. We give her a bath almost every night and it doesn't dry out her skin at all. It is also gentle and tear free, which I'm sad to admit, but we know it REALLY is tear free. It's so nice to only have one bottle/product for bath time.

2. Baby's Journey Bath Hammock: We used it for her first baths on the counter in our kitchen, and now we use it in the bath tub. I am somewhat of a minimalist and HATE clutter and things that aren't easily concealed. This hammock folds up so perfectly and hides anywhere {under bathroom sink}. It's easy to travel with if needed. I just knew I didn't want one of those big baby tubs, and now I'm so glad I didn't.

3. Wubbanub Soothie Pacifier: At first we had the soothie pacifier with a clip/lanyard thing, but then found this. There are several reasons this is great. First, it's so easy to find when the pacifier falls; second, it adds a little weight to the pacifier which helps keep it in the mouth better; third,  Sullivan is able to grab it easier {although she ends up chewing on the stuff animal rather than trying to get the pacifier back in her mouth} and finally, she cuddles with her "friend" and it's SO cute!

4. Medela Pump in Style Advanced Breast Pump: On-The-Go-Tote: WE GOT THIS FOR FREE! Everyone check with your insurance company BEFORE registering or buying a breast pump. Recently, a lot of insurances are paying/reimbursing breast pumps! I didn't use this much for the first month or so, but as I started leaving Sullivan {for basketball games and going back to work a little} it was great! The black "purse" makes it so desecrate. I work at an elementary school part time and the students have no idea that the bag I carry around is my breast pump. I also love the battery pack it comes with, I've used this a lot in the car. Personally, I had to buy different sized flanges {the funnel piece}, because the standard size didn't work well for me, but no big deal. The cooler and ice pack that it comes with are great and add to the convenience.

5. Hooter Hiders Nursing Cover: I try to avoid breast feeding in public {personal choice}, but sometimes it's impossible. This has been perfect to hide under. It has a flexible "bar" in the neck line so that you can look down an easily see your baby. AND when we hang out with friends, rather than be exiled to a separate room for what seems like forever, it's been so nice to have this cover {as long as everyone is comfortable, knowing what's happening under}.

6. Pottery Barn Classic Mom Diaper Bag: I love this diaper bag. It's a bit pricey, but this isn't JUST a diaper bag, it's my new purse as well. I carry this bag everywhere I go with the baby. It took Jeff some time to understand and cope with the price tag, but now that he sees how much we use it, he's in support. Unlike a lot of diaper bags, it comes in neutral colors, so a man can carry it with dignity {your welcome- I've actually had guy friends comment on this being the diaper bag they want their wife to get too}, but it's also classy and cute. It includes a detached changing pad {which I use ALL the time} and has plenty of pockets and sections, so it's easy to stay organized. I had mine monogrammed at a local shop, with a bright turquoise encircled T {for ALL future Thompson children as well}.

7. Baby K'Tan Baby Carrier: This has been perfect for me, as a cheerleading coach and being on the go. On nights I have to take Sullivan to games with me, she spends over 6 hours in this thing and loves it. It's really convenient because it's already formed for you, there's no long pieces or strips of long fabric and no learning how to wrap. It also comes in different sizes so it will be a perfect fit for whoever is going to use it {this is also a minor downfall, because unless someone is your size, they can't use it}. When Sullie Girl is in this she instantly falls asleep, I think she feels like she's in the womb again. She's super close to me, hears my heartbeat, is rocked with each step, really tight, and warm.

Sullivan helping me coach while in the Baby K'Tan carrier!
Throwback to 4 weeks old- a different Baby K'Tan "wrap".

Sullivan sleeping with her Wubbanub- we call him "Cliff Dog"
Throwback to her very first bath ever- in her hammock! Baha... she loved it! {she seriously does LOVE bath time now}

Wednesday, February 19

Charleston Trip.

We went to my favorite place EVER Charleston, South Carolina. One of the many perks of living in Hilton Head is how conveniently close we are to so many neat places. This trip was sort of a birthday/Valentine's Day/relax after the banquet kind of trip. We have some great friends who are super generous and let us stay in their AMAZING house for the night! Look how beautiful it is, I just can't get over it! The house is right in the heart of the city, perfectly located between King St. and the Battery. Sunday we walked around and visited with a friend in college there. It was cool to see the College of Charleston "campus".  Monday morning Sullivan and I walked to King St. for Starbucks and did some browsing. Jeff met up with us later and we just walked around the city all day and met up with friends for lunch, before heading back to our island. I love the city life of being able to walk almost everywhere you need to go. This weekend i decided that one day, in the very far off future, that Jeff and I will retire to Charleston. i should have taken more pictures, there is SO much to see and explore. If you haven't been to Charleston PLEASE do yourself a favor and go, go, go!  

Baby Gap Dress//Gymboree Leggings
They have baby sized rocking chairs on the porch for their grandbabies... I die! 
She get her expressions from me
But she looks JUST like him

Trowback to our FIRST time in Charleston, March 2012

Two years and counting....


December 18, 2012

We just celebrated two years of being married. I must say year two has been less eventful and more stable than year one. Well at least the second half of year two...

In year two we...
Got through one of the hardest times in my life
Joined a church and a small group
Went to Disney World for Young Life's ASC
Spent a weekend in Jacksonville
Spend a weekend in Charleston
Jeff got a convertible
Took a great camp trip to Young Life Camp
Successfully started Young Life on Hilton Head Island
My sister lived here for 5 months
I coached a winning cheerleading team (7th in the state)
Jeff coached the State Champion football team
We got a new sister- Lexi Thompson
Spent a week in Arizona, hiked Camelback Mountain
Got an iPad
Paid off my student loans

Obviously so much more happened in 2012, but at least this provides highlights. Here's some pictures to help recap our second year as the Thompsons.

Valentine's Day, gone wrong.

So this Valentine's Day.. I actually cared. Jeff and I are not the most sentimental people around, and aren't particularly into holidays. But this year, I was excited, I guess having a baby makes things more fun to celebrate. I woke up early and made a special breakfast, I felt super good! The heart shaped Dove chocolates melted too quickly but it was super cute. I am investing in this for the future and other holidays. Jeff, Sullivan, and I had plans to head to Charleston in the afternoon. Once breakfast was cleaned up, I went to go finish packing. As I'm in my bedroom, Jeff starts yelling at me from the kitchen. See the pineapple in the purple bowl? Well I threw away what we didn't eat... I know it's a little wasteful {sorry}. It's also important to mention that it was canned {50 cent} pineapple, not fresh.

Well, as I was being yelled at for throwing away the fruit, I got super angry too. Obviously our issues and argument were not JUST about pineapple... it's never really just about pineapple, riiiight? I refused to go on our trip {despite REALLLLY wanting to go}. The day was fairly miserable, and at about 6pm we finally talked. Jeff went out and came back with all the fixins' for fondue and flowers for me AND Sullivan. After that, I got the nerve to ask if it'd be possible for us to still go up to Charleston the next day...


Carter's Sweater//Converse Crib Shoes
Circo Sleep n' Play {similar here}
Baby Gap Love One PIece//DIY headband 

Tuesday, February 11

Month One: Need-to-Haves

1. Aden & Anais Swaddle Blankets: Everyone raves about these, and I'm apart of that parade! These are the best. They are so lightweight with a little stretch, so you are able to swaddle so tight! We had a couple of the "easy" swaddles, with the snaps and/or velcro, but we could never get them as tight as she liked to be. Once we mastered the perfect burrito wrap, when she would get fussy, all we had to do was wrap her up and she instantly calmed down. And even our escape artist struggled to get free.

2. Little Remedies for Tummys: Gripe Water: We didn't use this THAT often but when we did it was literally magic. When we didn't know what else to do or couldn't get Sullivan to calm down, we would resort to this and it worked EVERY TIME. The pediatrician and lactation specialist said you can use it as much as you want, because it's all natural ingredients. I definitely recommend to have this as a "just in case" tool.

3. Carters Long Sleeved Onesies: Sullivan lived in these for at least the first month! The best thing is the newborn size has little built in mittens that pull over the baby's hands, to avoid the dreaded scratching with those tiny razor nails! We barely left the house, so there wasn't really a need to have her looking cute and dressed to impress, but even when we did dress her up-we put one of these under whatever she was wearing.

4. Boob-Ease Natural Nipple Balm: First off, the name, hilarious "boob-ease" get it? Boobies. ha. I loved this stuff when I started breastfeeding. I never, not once, has sore or cracked nipples. Hard to say if all the credit goes to this stuff, but I loved it! Plus it's all natural and safe for baby, so you don't have to worry about washing off before the next feeding.

5. Happiest Baby on the Block: This book was wonderful! My biggest take away was the idea that babies are in the womb for 9 months, and when they are born we expect them to just adjust to a world that is the complete opposite of everything they knew. Karp {the author} calls the first 3 months of an infant's life "the fourth trimester". We can emulate the womb with the 5 S's {Suck, Swaddle, Swing, Side, Sound} in our big, cold world. It also helped me to have patience with Sullivan when she seemed to be fussy for no reason and also to keep in mind where she had lived before gracing us with her presence.

6. Baby Nursing App: This app has been a life saver! It is free if using just the nursing feature {definitely the most important and beneficial}, but you can pay $1.99 per feature {diapers, sleep, doctors visit, shot records, pumping sessions, bottle feedings, solids, etc} or the whole app for $5.99. I use this about 50 times a day. Especially in the beginning while establishing breastfeeding, i wanted to know what time she started eating, how long she ate for, I counted her diapers, and I also tracked her sleeping. It's NOT realistic to carry a pen and paper around your house, but as sad as it is I almost ALWAYS have my iphone with me. I also track her weight gain, and you can use it to record shot records, bath times, doctor visits etc.

7. Boppy Nursing Pillow: I know this isn't anything new, but we use this ALL the time. It's so great to have something to rest your arm on while nursing or just holding your baby. We also use it to prop her up. So many uses! I bought this custom cover. I normally wouldn't spend this much money, but with how much we use it and SEE it, it was worth it to me!

8. Jesus Calling: As a new mom with a newborn I wasn't having much quality time with the Lord. I love this devotional because each day quick and always on point. Scripture references are given each day as well. There is also an app you can purchase, which I also have, again making it convenient when nursing or holding the baby.

Please know that these things worked for us. I read a blog when I was registering for baby things and saw a post similar to this and I thought it was VERY helpful. There is SO MUCH baby crap stuff out there, and so much of it is unnecessary, in my humble opinion. Obviously this isn't the ONLY stuff we used/needed in the first month, but when I think about what was the best and most helpful.... this is it.

As always please comment and ask questions or give suggestions!

Sunday, February 9

Birthdays all around.

Today was a big day in the Thompson household. Jeff turned 27  and Walter turned 10! Woo hoo for both of them being born! They are the best guys I know, for real. 

I'll tell you what though... today was absolutely anticlimactic. Tomorrow we have our Young Life banquet, which is our largest fundraiser of the year, and it kind of stole the birthdays' thunder. Our church hosts the banquet, so after right after our church service ended this morning our Young Life committee showed up and we got to work. They did buy a nice {and delicious} birthday cake to at least acknowledge Jeff's birth, in the middle of all the frenzy.

Sounds super fun right? Here's a fun fact though {get ready for a lot of numbers}... last year our Young Life banquet was March 4th {four days before my birthday}. We found out we were pregnant with Sullivan just TWO days after the banquet, and TWO days before my birthday. We also adopted Walter on March 11th- so this is our first time celebrating his birthday {with him at least}.

Jeff has been super stressed with the banquet, and we obviously couldn't do anything extraordinary to celebrate. I feel kind of bad about not really making a big deal about BOTH of my boys' birthdays. We didn't get home from setting up until after 6pm... so tonight for dinner we got take-out from a really great restaurant, Frankie Bones. We enjoyed our steaks, and Walter enjoyed the little pieces we gave him {ONLY because it's a special occasion, poor guy lives on only dog food}.

Next year I WILL plan something great to honor and love Jeff {and Walter}. But this year the rock star gift I got Jeff will have to be enough. He's going to LA in April to visit one of his best friends. He's nearly impossible to buy for because he can always find a better deal or just buys things as he needs them {which isn't often}. He always says "I'm about experiences, not gifts" so this year I listened and I delivered.

I also reeeeally want to buy a doggy birthday hat {like this} for Walter, how great will that be?

Saturday, February 8

The Cloth Diapering Life.

Yes, we use cloth diapers! And yes, I love it! 

We made the decision early to invest in cloth diapering. We have friends who have successfully done it and I did my research {blog reading} to get more perspectives and opinions. We chose to go with Fuzzibunz, and I love them. They are so fun, colorful, and easy. 

Cloth diaper pros {for our family}: 
- Save money {Fuzzibunz has a great chart, here, that breaks down the savings for you}
- Good for environment
- Good for baby, no chemicals and artificial stuff going into them. Sullivan only gets diaper rash whenever she wears a disposable diaper
- Minimal leaks/blowouts 
- Super cute! 

Cloth diaper cons: 
- Wash routine every other day
- Using more water and energy {figured into the savings chart}
- Others don't know how to use/intimidating 
- Bulky 
- Not functional for out of town stays 
- Big money investment to start

1. Fuzzibunz One Size Elites 2. Rockin' Green Detergent 3. Kushies Diaper Liners 4. Ikea Trash Can
5. Planet Wise Pail Liner 6. Itzy Ritzy Wet Bag

My washing routine: 
1. I bought a trash can and a reusable pail liner. When we change a diaper we shake out the insert directly into the pail. Then toss the cover in too. 
2. When I have 5 diapers left {I have 16 total} it's time to wash! I pull the liner full of dirty diapers right out of the pail. And put a new liner in {I have two pail liners}. I take it all to the wash, dump it all in the machine, including the liner, and run a COLD soak with NO detergent. 
3. Next, run a HOT/COLD cycle WITH detergent. You can only use specific detergents with cloth diapers.  
4. I do one more cold rinse, just for good measure.
5. Separate the liners from the inserts. I line dry the liners, and put the inserts in the dryer on low heat. When it gets really warm you can dry everything outside AND the sun naturally bleaches the inserts.
6. Once everything is dry I pre-stuff the inserts with the liners and put them in the drawer where we do diaper changes. This is only for convenience.

Now, Sullivan is still strictly breastfed, apparently when babies start eating solids it's a game changer in the world of cloth diapering. I diaper liners for when we cross that bridge.

I also have a  wet bag, which is super cute and perfect for when we are out of the house. The diaper goes into the wet bag to keep the stink and and liquids sealed until we get home. 

How pretty is that! This is all of our diapers, washed, dried, stuffed, and ready to wear! 

See they're bulky, but so so cute//Pretty Little Elm Headband

We call her "big booty" and sing "I like big butts" ALL the time, ha... has anyone seen that Friends episode? 

As always please, please, pleeeease comment and let me know if you have any questions OR suggestions for me!

Friday, February 7

Random Issues We've Had.

It's so easy to make life seem perfect and have my baby appear to be the best thing ever {which, hello, she is...ha}. The reality is that it's not always a walk in the park and fields of flowers. But posting cute pictures is so deceiving because obviously I'm not going to post pictures of her screaming and I'm not really into airing dirty laundry as my Facebook status. 

Some of the problems and issues that have arose with both mama and baby...
**My first month postpartum, I struggled with baby blues. All the warnings I got seemed silly and I thought it was a joke. No joke people, the "baby blues" are a real thing. I couldn't believe they {the awesome nurses and hospital staff} just sent me home with a helpless baby. I was still recovering from a somewhat intense delivery {3 hr pushing session}, and thought "they" should send an in-home nurse or something to help with the transition. I had no previous experience with babies, especially newborns, so it was foreign territory for me and the husband. After 2 weeks I was feeling more stable {emotionally} but still very overwhelmed. By 4 weeks out I seriously told Jeff I as ready to have another baby- whaaaat? Now being 3 months out I know that I was created to be a mama, and I have so much confidence in myself and my decisions in regards to to our baby girl.

**I got terrible stretch marks at 31 weeks pregnant {yes, I cried when they showed up}. After the delivery my marks got real red and puffy and SO freakin itchy. I thought it was normal because my skin was "shrinking". Within a day or two a rash developed all over my upper thighs, waist, and even my arms! I finally called my doctor and apparently I had a unique case of postpartum PUPPP. I had to take some allergy medicine and it took a whole week to clear up.

**A hemangioma showed up on Sullivan's nose at 2 weeks old. These are reaaaally common in babies but not always in super noticeable places. It started swelling and getting bigger, which happens through the first year THEN it begins to reduce and eventually disappear. The doctors {and us} were concerned by the location of Sullivan's, near the corner of her eye and it was starting to swell/grow into her tear duct, so we decided to treat it. The first level of treatment is, get ready for this...  a blood pressure medicine! I was so nervous but it's been almost a month and she's had no negative side effects and the hemangioma has reduced in size, but it's definitely not going away anytime soon, which we're fine with- it's unique!

**Sullivan hasn't been a big weight gainer. She eats great {we breastfeed} but isn't gaining like other babies we know. Doctors say she's totally fine! People just kept making comments {FYI don't do that} and got me nervous about it. At her 2 month well visit she was in the 25th percentile for weight but 75th for height. So she's tall and skinny. Within the last month she's definitely put on weight though. I will be weighing her today actually at my breastfeeding support group {everyone should find one of these}.

**Her poop was green for 2 weeks! As a breastfed baby the poop is supposed to be mustard yellow, and was for the first 6 weeks then randomly turned all different shades of green and different textures. Guess what- the doctor said he doesn't worry about green, yellow, or orange poop! Hooray. Never in my life did I think I'd be talking about or CARE about poop.

**She has a herniated belly button- AKA an outie.

**She had an umbilical granuloma, which she had to have "burned" off 3 different times with silver nitrate. It causes her zero pain but stains her belly button blackish for forever. Good news, it's officially healed, which is reeeally great because the doctors were talking surgery if it didn't. 

We are blessed that all of these things have been/are minor and cause no concern or worry, especially since our little nugget wasn't breathing when she was born! Praise the Lord she is so healthy!
Chambray Baby Gap One-Piece//Hobby Lobby Bow

Please feel free to ask any specific questions you might have! 

Thursday, February 6

Happy Baby, Happy Life.

Since October 30th our life has NOT been the same... duh. We felt like we were prepared for life with baby, but no amount of preparation could have truly got us ready for what was coming. I always heard people talk about the sacrificial life of a parent, especially moms, but man was I naive. I didn't think about the everyday things that I can never just hop up and do. Simple things... going pee, taking a shower, cleaning, cooking, WORKING OUT. I am officially canceling my gym membership because let's be honest, when will I ever be able to go? The selflessness it takes to be a parent is unreal, until you experience it. I have to place someone else's needs above my own at all times. And as the selfish person I naturally am, this definitely doesn't come easy. But luckily the Lord has equipped and prepare me {everyone} to raise up a new generation and be parents, even if, like Jeff and I, you aren't necessarily planning or trying to become parents right this moment.

#Ourbabysullivan has been the sweetest, most incredible gift we've ever received. I still look at her and think how blessed we are to have been chosen as her parents. Obviously, we think she's perfect... but I genuinely believe that she is! She's such a fun and happy baby, she literally just smiles and squeals for hours every day. 

Sullivan's first captured smile at 5 weeks! 

Sullivan began sleeping through the night at 6ish weeks. Before that she only woke up once or twice in the night, so it was manageable. I read a book, Babywise, which I totally recommend to ANY soon-to-be parents. I honestly believe the principles we applied from this book largely get the credit for her being the way she is. I know every baby is going to be different, and I'm positive our next baby will be way more challenging {I like to use the word hellion} but I think this book is AMAZING. Obviously, take it with a grain of salt, and realize every baby won't fit perfectly into the examples in the book. For the first 3 weeks I wanted to know why my baby wasn't a mini clone of the examples given. Then I loosened up and realized it was a process. We worked {are continue to work} toward the goal of helping our baby be happy, predictable, content, and well rested.  

My shirt Jcrew Factory {similar here}//Baby's shirt from Carter {similar here}
Mudpie Leggings

H&M onesie

Dress: Island Child//Georgia&Jane Headband

Peplum Baby Gap Onesie 
She's just so happy, I can't help myself!