Baby’s First Three Months

So you’ve waited nine long months of carrying your child. You’ve enjoyed their little kicks, watched them on the sonogram screen and finally, you’ve endured hours of labor. They’re finally here, and everyone couldn’t be happier! images (48)But now that the pregnancy is over, what are some of the milestones that you can expect from your little one? When will you see the first smile, or when can you expect your tiny tot to roll over? Not all babies will progress at the exact same rates, but this is a handy timetable to learn what you can expect your child to learn within the first three months of their life!

Month 1
When your baby is first born, you may certainly feel like it is just a constant cycle of feeding and changing your child. Your infant isn’t able to hold their head up at first, as their necks aren’t strong enough to support their heads just yet. But soon enough, your little one will be able to lift their head when they are lying on their tummies! Within the first month, you will also begin to notice that your child will be able to track your voice when they hear you, and sometimes may even be able to look around and follow the sound of your voice! You may even wake up one day and peek in the crib to see your child smiling up at you. While not all children can do this within the first month, some can. Remember, each baby learns and progresses differently, all at their own rate.
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Let’s Talk About the Skin You’re In

When I am not blogging for Ooh Belly, being momma to the two best girls, or being wife and friend to love my love, I am running a small, natural and organic, handcrafted skincare business called Naturalized Citizen Skincare. Somehow, even though I live, sleep and breathe natural skincare 24/7, I have yet to blog about it. I figured it is about time, and I am going to begin with the basics. Here’s over the counter Big Cosmetic skincare decoded, and answers to the five most frequently asked questions I hear about your average drugstore products. (Please feel free to chime in on the comments section with any other questions. I will be more than happy to answer them if I can.)

On antiperspirants- READ MORE HERE

On SLS- READ MORE HERE

On SPF- READ MORE HERE

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Why You Should Hire a Doula

If there is ever one time in your life that you’ll need a lot of extra help, it is most definitely when you are going to have a baby. If you are already a mom, you’ll surely know this! Mom’s and dads will be incredibly busy getting ready for ther new little bundle of joy, and if you don’t have some extra help, other areas of life may suffer a little bit. Babies require a lot of our time, so sometimes we may forget to go to the take some time for ourselves, and we may even overlook the benefit of having someone else there to talk to about our feelings.image

Doulas are not medical professionals, but they are there to provide emotional and physical support for the expectant mom. Unlike your doctor, who will be in and out of the room during labor, your doula will be there from beginning to end. If you choose that you want to labor at home for a little bit before you head to the hospital to deliver, your doula will be there with you too, offering you their support. While in labor, your doula will be there to keep you comfortable, sometimes massaging key pressure points to try and ease your pain or even set up a hot, relaxing shower for you. A doula is there to serve you!
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It Will Never Be The Same

ImageThis week, for me, has moved in slow motion. I have waded between various unrealized thoughts, in and out of moods barely formed before they change, and through a growing sea of painful numbness, as though the blood flow to some vital part of my psyche has been staunched. This week, my baby turned two, which any mother will tell you is a traumatic experience in and of itself; keenly bittersweet, especially when it is your last child. This week while driving to pick up my eldest from school, my usual NPR programming was interrupted to say that there had been explosions reported at the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Like most of the nation that still suffers from some degree of PTSD after September 11th, I went cold. Ten minutes later I walked in to my daughter’s classroom and was pulled aside by the teacher who informed me that the mother of one of my child’s classmates committed suicide last week, that the children were told of the death that day, and that there may be questions at home. There were. This week I watched a city and a nation rise, I watched a tiny town in Texas burn, and I saw a young boy who I have known and interacted with almost every day for the past two years struggle with the fact that his life will never be the same…and try to cope with levels of pain, guilt, and grief that I cannot even begin to understand.
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How to Choose the Right Doula

Childbirth is a difficult thing, made all the more complicated by the fact that there will be countless people around you and your family as you prepare for the birth, go into labor, and then bring the baby back home afterwards. But in the process leading up to the birth itself, it’s critical to surround yourself as an expectant mother (or father!) with people who can help you achieve optimal health for both your pregnancy and the baby.

A doula is one option out there for expectant moms searching for help when it comes to improving their childbirth experiment. Doulas are effectively labor coaches, and are non-medical assistants who help women emotionally, and logistically, to have a healthy and happy pregnancy. But how do you pick a doula who is right for you? And if you have never worked with a doula before, how do you know what to do when it comes to choosing the right one? Let’s review:
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The Momicorn: Because Geek Moms DO Exist.

ImageA smattering of things that I know:

  1. Han shot first. (Duh) He was also the only non-jedi in the original trilogy to ever wield a light saber.
  2. That high elvish is actually based on a nearly extinct dialect of Finnish
  3. That I am Green Ajah.
  4. That George R. R. Martin, outside of Game of Thrones, also penned one of the most believable vampire origin stories of all time
  5. How to use power tools correctly and safely.
  6. How to make minor fixes to my own car.
  7. That “god particle,” is a misnomer, and why…
  8. That, despite the gorgeous graphics of Twilight Princess, Majora’s Mask is still my favorite of the LOZ titles.
  9. How to troubleshoot my own computer.

10. That it’s bigger on the inside.
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Extreme Morning Sickness: Hyperemesis Gravidarum

Morning sickness is probably one of the first symptoms of pregnancy that you have encountered. Throughout the first trimester, most women will feel nauseous and some will be accompanied by vomiting. None of this is pleasant, but it is one of the beginning signs of pregnancy. However, how do you know that what you are experiencing is normal?
Morning sickness is caused by the sudden and rapid release of human chorionic gonadotropin, or HCG. This hormone is released by the placenta and causes the “positive” sign to appear on pregnancy tests. Despite being called “morning sickness,” this can strike you at any time. Most women will feel nauseous at various times throughout the day. Some women will even vomit or have a hard time holding down their food. If this occurs one or maybe even twice a day, it is considered normal. The symptoms of nausea usually go away around the 13th week of pregnancy, although it varies from woman to woman. If you are the lucky majority, your nausea and vomiting will completely go away and stay away in the middle of your second trimester.
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The Shallow End of The Green Pool: Going Green for Beginners

ImageGreen living: Celebrities do it, the interwebs is full of people doing it, magazines, tv shows, books, whole stores have been devoted to the gospel of green. But how does one get to “green,” especially when you’re starting from a water bottles and disposable everything existence, as so many people are? It can be done, you just have to pace yourself, and pick a place to begin. Here are some suggestions from the shallow end of the green pool. When you feel comfortable, wade in a bit deeper, and before you know it you’ll be swimming happily with the other neo-hippy fish in the slightly judgey end of the deep green sea. (Oh, please, like I am the only one who’s judgey? Take a long hard mirror gaze, Grocery Totes McGee, then come on over, and I’ll air pop some corn while we watch Fraggle Rock on Netflix.)

  1. Break down compound packaging.- Pasta boxes, cereal boxes, toothpaste, bulk buys, all of these things come in compound packages, meaning part of the packaging is recyclable cardboard, and the other part is non-recyclable polystyrene. If you break them down, which takes all of five seconds, and can be strangely satisfying, then you can recycle the cardboard and discard the rest. This may seem like a no-brainer, but how many of us actually take the time to do it?

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Acupressure

There are many natural ways to self-induce labor. One of these techniques is called acupressure, which is a form of acupuncture, without the needles. The practice uses the same points on the body as acupuncture does but uses finger pressure to gently induce labor or help relieve the pain of childbirth.
Before we get into what acupressure really is, please understand that you should not attempt it unless you are told it is safe by a doctor or a midwife. There is a chance that you could go into early labor, which would put your baby’s health or life at risk. It is recommended to not attempt acupressure until you are at least 38 weeks pregnant. It is also best that there is a midwife or partner available in case anything should go wrong. You should never attempt these techniques when you are alone.
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