Day 28 of Countdown to Oliver: Finish a Book

Today was a slow day, and I actually had quite a bit of time to myself coupled with not a lot of energy. It was hot outside, the daughter took two long naps and the husband worked through lunch. So, today was a perfect day to cross off “Finish a book” from the list.

I finished “Song of Solomon” by Toni Morrison, which I had started several months ago and simply got distracted before I could finish. I don’t know if I could label Toni Morrison’s writing as “enjoyable” for the sake of being pleasant, but she forces her readers to really dig down deep and come face-to-face with scenarios that we’d often rather ignore. For that, I find her writing enjoyable for the sake of making me feel something and forcing the wheels in my mind to turn.

Book

However, if you want some lighter reading or simply want to stick with the pregnancy/self-improvement mode, I really enjoyed “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” during my first pregnancy and “The Happiness Project” just a few months ago. Both were great reads; they’re educational and motivational.

 

The Countdown List:

1. Create the segment “Countdown to Oliver” and make list
2. Make a hospital bag
3. Create a baby registry
4. Prepare the baby’s space
5. Set-up pediatrician visits and appointments
6. Install the carseat
7. Have a pampering day
8. Prepare birthing plan
9. Wash shower curtains, rugs and sheets
10. *Reader’s idea*
11. Finish an art project
12. Finish a book
13. Create an exercise regimen for the final 4 weeks
14. Take a sewing class and make something for the newest babe
15. Have a special mom and daughter day with Ella
16. (Re)organize files and paperwork
17. Finalize plans with the OB
18. Prepare for visiting family
19. Cleaning day
20. *Reader’s idea*
21. Meal prep (frozen meals)
22. Write a letter to the new baby
23. Prepare announcements to send out after birth
24. Date night
25. Invest in post baby clothes
26. Clean pumping and feeding items
27. Take a class
28. Clean the carpets and floors
29. Stock up on toiletries, diapers and groceries
30. *Reader’s idea*

Day 29 of Countdown to Oliver: Registry

I’ll start with one of the simplest and most enjoyable on the list: Create a baby registry.

My suggestion (and what we’re using this time around) for an online registry is Amazon. You can add any item (normally for a better price) from Amazon or there’s also an option to add items from other websites and stores, which is awesome. For in-store registries, Target, Babies R Us, and Buy Buy Baby are pretty standard.

Our registry is fairly short and sweet considering we have a toddler (daughter) whose baby items we saved, and we purposely kept most of our major baby items gender neutral as we were shopping and registering for our first. The plus side is, since it is our second time around, I can include some suggestions from experience in this post that I think every first-time mom needs, along with some unique, fun ideas as well.

And since this is our first boy, feel free to comment below with your helpful ideas and favorites for baby boy items!

Registry Items Every First-Time Mom Needs:

  • Jogging stroller–I say this because, in my opinion, a jogging stroller is the most versatile. If you have a jogging stroller, you won’t need to worry about purchasing any of the other types of strollers because this will cover all your bases. 
  • Bouncy seat–These bring comfort, sleep, relief and are just a great overall item to have for baby. I’ve found bouncy seats with vibration work best, but I’m sure swings or music work just as well for others. 
  • Diapers–Whether disposable or re-usable, it seems a lot of moms forget to include this on their registry. The more diapers, the better, because they’re expensive and buying/using them won’t end for a couple years. So, stock up!
  • Pacifier clips–I hear a lot of moms complain about constantly losing pacifiers. We used pacifier clips from day one, and I can proudly say we have never lost a pacifier. They’re a good investment, for sure.
  • Car seat–Of course, you have to have a car seat to even leave the hospital. It’s also good to include a couple higher-priced items on your registry because someone might want to get them for you or a group of people might want to go-in on a bigger item that you can really use. 
  • Swaddles–Life savers for us. At first, we didn’t use them too often, but eventually they were a must. They stopped our daughter from waking herself up with her arms and legs or cutting herself with her nails, and she slept so much sounder in general. 
  • Baby carrier/sling–If you want to function throughout the day, hands-free, these make it ten times easier. So nice. Personally, I prefer a sling because it’s more intimate, but both are great. 
  • Pacifiers, bottles, wipes, burping blankets, butt cream, lotion, bathing items–Of course, don’t forget the essentials!
  • Pack n’ Play–We found one with a newborn insert included and used it next to our bed when our baby slept in our room the first three months. Then, as she got older, we used it to set her in to play for a while so she couldn’t always crawl off. And we’ve always and are still able to use it every time we travel. It’s come in handy and has also been an extremely versatile item for us. 

Note: For breastfeeding moms, a lot of times pumps and breastfeeding supplies are covered (at least partially) by insurance. So, ask about it at the hospital or call your insurance carrier!

Clever and Unique Registry Items:

  • If you’re having a baby shower, have people bring books instead of cards or put gifts in baskets/storage boxes instead of wrapping paper/bags.
  • Subscriptions–We registered for a year’s worth of Citrus Lane, which is a different package of toys, books, goodies and essentials delivered monthly. It’s a fun gift that keeps on giving and continues to provide you with new items and fun things for baby. 
  • For a shower, have a diaper cake instead of a cake–Cake only lasts a few minutes, but you can always use diapers!
  • A mom and baby class–Register for a mom/baby swim class or yoga class; it can be 1 class, a month’s worth or a year’s worth. Regardless, it’s a fun, unique experience to include.
  • Newborn photography session–This is a unique, personal one to consider registering for. A lot of times someone will know a photographer or likes to support a photographer-friend, so this gift ends up benefiting the gifter as well. 

 

The Countdown List:

1. Create the segment “Countdown to Oliver” and make list
2. Make a hospital bag
3. Create a baby registry
4. Prepare the baby’s space
5. Set-up pediatrician visits and appointments
6. Install the carseat
7. Have a pampering day
8. Prepare birthing plan
9. Wash shower curtains, rugs and sheets
10. *Reader’s idea*
11. Finish an art project
12. Finish a book
13. Create an exercise regimen for the final 4 weeks
14. Take a sewing class and make something for the newest babe
15. Have a special mom and daughter day with Ella
16. (Re)organize files and paperwork
17. Finalize plans with the OB
18. Prepare for visiting family
19. Cleaning day
20. *Reader’s idea*
21. Meal prep (frozen meals)
22. Write a letter to the new baby
23. Prepare announcements to send out after birth
24. Date night
25. Invest in post baby clothes
26. Clean pumping and feeding items
27. Take a class
28. Clean the carpets and floors
29. Stock up on toiletries, diapers and groceries
30. *Reader’s idea*

Day 30 of Countdown to Oliver: The List

I have 30 days left until my due date, June 26. Now, I know it’s highly unlikely Oliver make his appearance right on his due date; however, considering I still have several projects and random things I’d like to get done beforehand, I thought it’d be fun to do a “Countdown to Oliver” segment that includes something specific to do each day up until he makes his appearance.

There will be three slots in the 30 days where I’ll pick a *reader’s idea* of preparing to bring home a newborn and do it. So, leave your ideas in the comments below!

This is a list, in no specific order, of all the things I’ve thought up thus far:

1. Create the segment “Countdown to Oliver” and make list
2. Make a hospital bag
3. Create a baby registry
4. Prepare the baby’s space
5. Set-up pediatrician visits and appointments
6. Install the carseat
7. Have a pampering day
8. Prepare birthing plan
9. Wash shower curtains, rugs and sheets
10. *Reader’s idea*
11. Finish an art project
12. Finish a book
13. Create an exercise regimen for the final 4 weeks
14. Take a sewing class and make something for the newest babe
15. Have a special mom and daughter day with Ella
16. (Re)organize files and paperwork
17. Finalize plans with the wonderful OB
18. Prepare for visiting family
19. Cleaning day
20. *Reader’s idea*
21. Meal prep (frozen meals)
22. Write a letter to the new baby
23. Prepare announcements to send out after birth
24. Date night
25. Invest in post baby clothes
26. Clean pumping and feeding items
27. Take a class
28. Clean the carpets and floors
29. Stock up on toiletries, diapers and groceries
30. *Reader’s idea*

One human life, your entire existence, seems comparable to one leaf on a single branch somewhere in the vast forests of Earth; it’s unlikely that any other leaf not hanging from your growing tree will ever even know you exist. Regardless, always remember you can endure the storms and blow peacefully in the sun with the company of those around you, or you can choose to fall from the tree and disintegrate aimlessly on the ground. And every once in a while, someone higher than you might come by, pick a leaf off its branch, and mold it into a stepping stone to somewhere. If willing, it may be your leaf.” –TLS (Homemade Experience)