First Trimester Tricks of the trade

Ok, so now that the secret is out-- (Baby Garay #5 is due this Summer!!) -- I've had SO many people ask me how I am getting through the first trimester with so many little ones and so much energy.

My Secret? Ningxia Red. Well, really it's the combo of Ningxia Red, Ningxia Zyng and Ningxia Nitro every morning.

Wait, let me back up a second. So in all three pregnancies, the MOMENT I pee on that stick, coffee is a no-go. I can't handle the smell, let alone the damn taste (oh my gosh just typing about it makes me wanna vom). So, I've had to resort to new things to get me through 12 entire weeks of a coffee-less life (plus the rest of a pregnancy of decreased caffeine intake).

Enter: Young Living. OH DEAR BABY JESUS how I wish I had this stuff with the triplets' pregnancy. My life would have been CHANGED. But, there's no use in harping on the past. *le sigh*

So, Ningxia Red is Young Living's antioxidant drink. It's a combination of juices and oils, with the main ingredient being from the WolfBerry (you can read about the Wolfberries benefits here). It's been INCREDIBLE for keeping sustained energy, decreasing the number of headaches I get (thanks 1st trimester + caffeine withdrawal!) and helping me keep up with these other 4 hoodlums! Ningxia Zyng is a different soda blend of the same kinds of things in NR and Ningxia Nitro is like the concentrated version, but all three are different blends of the same incredible product.

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The REAL secret though? putting ALL THREE together in one glass and #boom.

One of Young Living's Corporate guys calls it the "Zyng Bomb" and it's basically the greatest thing to happen to my sanity.

Also, it's widely known that Progesterone is VITAL in the first trimester for fetal development and throughout the pregnancy to maintain a supportive environment for the growing babe! So, I've been SUPER thankful to get some natural progesterone support from Progessence Plus. It's an oil blend with Frankincense and wild yam extract (plus so many others) that I roll on my forearms every night. Benefits: mood stabilizing, sleep promoting, and progesterone boosting! Y'all! Seriously! this stuff couldn't get any better!

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Smooth sailing through this first trimester (Four more weeks left! Hallelujah!) and beyond! I cannot wait to meet this sweet little #fifthbabe <3

Also, some other things I from beginning and end and after for all those postpartum daze are: Super B (sustained energy from B vitamins), Multigreens (because a girls gotta poo), Mineralessence, Mindwise, and Life 9 probiotics!

Happy Hump Day!

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Mishka Moushka + other weird things motherhood teaches

I knew I wanted to be a Mom based on three things (before I was a mom, obviously)

1. I love kids 2. The concept of pregnancy was absolutely amazing to me 3. I thrive in the midst of chaos

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I wish someone had prepared me more. But, apparently that's not how it works. They just throw you in the trenches to learn on your own because you LITERALLY wouldn't believe them if they told you the truth. I'm almost three years into it (#rookie, I know), but a LOT of my friends are just starting. So, this one's for you.

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+ It didn't matter if I liked wine (or even alcohol...), I wouldn't get through some days without it.

+ mom powers are real. when the last thing you hear is your baby's heart rate in the 50s, you move your body from a bed to an OR table with a fully functioning non-mobile epidural. and you have no idea how.

+ Target laps are crucial in the first year (especially when you're HORRIBLY isolated with high order multiples). Pack up two feeds worth of milk, put two in the stroller, one in a carrier, get that buckies, and just start walking--with absolutely no purpose, but to just see other humans and the light of day outside that nursery that has trapped you. #momtherapy #avoideyecontact #callyourmom

+ You've never known stress or swamp ass until you're trapped in a bathroom stall without a stroller or a carrier or a place to put your baby with three toddlers who arent listening and touching #ALLTHETHINGS and you have to figure out where to put the baby so you can hold each toddler one-at-a-time over the toilet while they're all YELLING about how much they have to pee. so, you put the baby in the sink. #notaproudmoment

+ kids gain smarts WAY faster than you expect them to.

+ even as a nurse, you'll be scared shitless the first time your kid falls down the steps and ends with the biggest lump ever, and you WILL go to the ER.

+ Moms and Dads have fairgame to potty candy. but remember what's stated above--kids get real smart, real fast. watch out for that 2-year-old calling you out to SEE THAT PEE-PEE after you stick your hand in that jar. #eatinsecret

+ On that note, you'll learn to never actually SHOW your kids that you're eating. or you won't be soon enough.

+ I wouldn't care AT ALL that I spend more money on tiny little clothes than I do on a 401k.

+ continually throughout EVERY SINGLE DAY you would have impulse urges to shake, kiss, run away from, scream at, hug, cuddle with, and laugh at your children --all within MINUTES of each other. and no matter how terrible the day was, when they're sleeping you have even STRONGER urges to just go up and scoop them up to cuddle because SOMEHOW you miss them.

+ you'd have to tell them CONSTANTLY to stop touching their own and each other's genitals.

+ no matter your parenting philosophy, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse would save your life one day. YOU JUST WAIT. #toldyouso #mishkamoushka (WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN?!)

+ It's completely unavoidable to have dried waffles smashed in your car floor boards. no matter HOW MUCH you used to clean your car before kids, no matter HOW MUCH you clean it now, it happens.

+ that sudden urge to run far away is IMMEDIATELY challenged by the sudden urge to procreate. #allthebabies

+ You've never relied so heavily on drive-thrus and full tanks of gas before in your LIFE than you have when you have three babies asleep for what you KNOW will be their only nap that day.

+Bandaids are a toddler's version of your caffeine. they fix EVERYTHING. (and if you don't drink caffeine I don't trust you one. single. bit.)

View More: http://tiffanyhudsonphotography.pass.us/shannonmorning

these children test my limits and motherhood is NOTHING and EVERYTHING I thought it would be.

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The Baby Cubby | my new favorite bag!

Umm, guys.HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS SITE WHEN I WAS PREGNANT. either time, I don't care. I'm just so happy I finally found it!!

The Baby Cubby

EVERYTHING BABY. and my obsession right now-- the perfect bag.

Your pick of the latest diaper bags from Skip Hop to petunia pickle bottom, and beyond. AMAZING prices—everything you could want in a site when you’re SO overwhelmed by options already!!

They have the “Diaper Bag Buying Guide” to walk you through step-by-step and help you choose exactly the bag you need. Including a LIST of things that are most commonly kept in a diaper bag for a newborn!! Y’all! Where was this 2.5 years ago when I went out for the first time alone with newborn triplets!! OH HOW I WOULD HAVE KILLED FOR THIS!!!

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 Diaper Bag Buying Guide

But, they don’t just have diaper bags.

Guys, The Baby Cubby is NOT just “another baby store.” One thing they try really hard to do is let people know they are so much more than that and they want that to come across to parents so whenever you engage with them, whether on their website at babycubby.com, in their retail store, or through social media or their Cubby Community Blog you feel that difference knowing they are there not just to sell "stuff" but to be a resource for you through the amazing journey of parenthood. 🙌🏻

Lord knows we could all use more help getting through this crazy season of life, amiright?!

Here’s a little blurb from The Baby Cubby about their “Why”:

"Why We Do What We Do

The Baby Cubby is for every parent out there who has ever felt overwhelmed or discouraged about becoming a parent. Our Baby Cubby team is made up of parents who have been there, we know what it’s like and we are passionate about encouraging, inspiring, and reminding parents how amazing they are and how important their role is.  

The way we do that is by finding the best and safest baby gear and providing it to parents in a fun shopping experience where we do things like test strollers on our stroller track, price match everyday - even amazon, offer free shipping nationwide at BabyCubby.com and actively engage with parents via social media and our cubby community blog to discuss some of those hard topics of parenting.

You can read a little bit more about what we're passionate about and why we do what we do on our about us page here - http://www.babycubby.com/about-us/"

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Some more reasons to make this company even more FABULOUS:

- They always price match, even amazon, so you know you're getting a great deal

- They carry only the best and safest gear so you can shop confidently (they spend hundreds of hours researching so you don't have to—PRAISE THE LAWDDDD!)

- Free Shipping everyday at BabyCubby.com over $49. 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻

Seriously, why have I been going anywhere else for so long?! I guess it’s just time to push out some more kids and get full use of this place while I can! 😂😂😂 OMG Stop. I cannot even think about that right now as I have one kid asking me to wipe her butt, another asking for Peppa Pig, another missing, and a newly confident crawler trying to clear the tile steps…… Come back to me in 8-10 years!! ;) Meanwhile I’m going to suggest to The Baby Cubby that they sell a line of anti anxiety items and some toddler hearing aids!! HAHA!

Seriously, though. get there. now.

What did I choose?

Little Unicorn Marindale Backpack Diaper Bag

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First of all, that name?? Sold. Gold. Secondly, BACKPACK!!! In this time of our lives with 3 2.5year olds and an infant (don’t get me started on the whole “almost toddler" thing 😭😭)  We NEED something that we can easily (and without serious shoulder pain!) strap to us so we don’t forget it. We are already struggling with the whole “don’t forget a child” thing let alone a bag. So, there’s that. The Diaper Bag Buying guide wants you to focus on these things:

Storage, Function + Style, Size + Weight, carrying options, and Fabric.

Storage: it has SEVEN POCKETS. enough said.

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Function + Style: BACK PACK!!! Also, it’s got a little masculinity to it so Brandon won’t feel like a total goob with a big flowery bag on his back when he’s carrying! (which invariably is 50% of the time!)

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Size + Weight: it’s the perfect medium bag for anything, and as much as I love my oversize LV bag, I can’t STAND an oversized diaper bag. I end up overpacking it and can NEVER find what we need. Also—Adjustable, padded shoulder straps. #PTL (praise the lawd….let’s get that hashtag going so I don’t have to explain that it isn’t a starbucks drink)

Carrying Options: (like I said...) BACK PACK!! and shoulder strap, and stroller straps!! AND I’M NEVER GOING BACK.

Fabric: Cotton canvas with vegan leather and a wipeable inside liner. because why not look SUPER DAMN CUTE and be SUPER DAMN FUNCTIONAL while also being real sweet to nature and the world?? #whythehecknot (and we went with the Grey because i LOVE grey and brown contrast!)

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So, there’s MY whys, and like I said, I’m not going back.

Thank you SO MUCH Baby Cubby for making this such an easy decision for a mom that has 2 jobs, 4 kids under 3, 29905235 other things going through her brain and just can’t when it comes to choosing new baby things. I always end up regretting my decision and have to buy 2 or 3 of something. NOT ANY MORE!

After you get to the website and inevitably buy #allthethings, tell me what you get!!! <3

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Not on my terms.

to the mammas who tried to breastfeed at delivery and never got the hang of it: fed it best to the mammas who pumped and supplemented and cluster fed and drank #allthewater and took #allthesupplements and downed #allthemothermilktea in a desperate attempt to make enough for their babe/babes: fed is best

to the mammas who adopted or fostered sweet babes and couldn't find donors or couldn't lactate: fed is best

to the mammas who had radical mastectomies before they had sweet babies: fed is best

to the mammas who's milk dried up before their want to stop breastfeeding did: fed is best

to the mammas who's babes were born with oral aversions or ties or clefts: fed is best

to the mammas who make skim milk when their babe needs whole: fed is best

to the mammas whose minds are taken with postpartum depression: fed is best

to the mammas who pump and pump and pump and pump just to feed their babe one bottle a day of mamma's milk: fed is best

The internet has a tendency to mom shame a little too often, and I see a lot of that manifested in patients on labor and delivery. I was personally shamed for giving Stella formula last week, but what the person who shamed me doesn't know is that I went back to nightshift full time, sooner than I wanted to, when my baby was sleeping through the night and my body couldn't adjust. My Milk couldn't deal. I pumped and pumped and lost sleep and semi lost my mind trying to keep up, and I couldn't. I made it 8 months exclusively breastfeeding Stella, yet someone made me think that wasn't enough. and what I want you to know is FED IS BEST. Breast is fabulous, but FED is best. <3 

 This all happened sooner than I wanted, sooner than I expected, and on different terms than I planned. But, I'm coming to peace with it. and I'm flat out over the mom shaming. 

"Kindness doesn't cost a thing. Sprinkle that shit everywhere."