Eloise's Nursery Tour

Monday, January 23, 2017
During my entire first trimester, we were convinced Eloise was a boy. We would've put money on it, kind of convinced! At 21 weeks, when we were told by our ultrasound technician that it was definitely a girl, Jordan and I were quiet and in shock. So quiet that I actually turned to her and said, "I promise we're excited! We were just convinced it was a boy!" Thankfully, she found that funny.

Because I was so certain she was a boy, I had the entire nursery planned out....for a boy! I even had paint swatches sitting in the nursery. The walls were going to be navy or dark grey and it was going to be a camping sort of feel with string lights, a tee-pee, stars on the ceiling...the works.

So, pink was hard. I mean really hard! And this is coming from a woman who loves pink. 

I want to switch out the curtains for something more colorful (but am being super picky) and will decorate her name above her crib a little more, but for now, here is what I have managed to put together!

Add me on Snapchat to see a video tour: kelseyyycase

Items and Where to Buy Them:
Tassel pillow | Fur rug | Crib | Chair | Basket | Silver table (on sale at Hobby Lobby. Originally blue - spray painted silver) | Dresser | Knobs on dresser | Knobs on closet doors | House Kleenex holder | Pink flamingo | Pink fox | Lamp | Curtains (TJ Maxx)

Christmas in Iowa

Friday, January 20, 2017
I'm finally sharing our Christmas up North. It was cold (well, colder than we are used to) but Eloise got to spend her first Christmas in Iowa meeting family and friends and I was so happy about that. It was one of my favorite things. Seeing family and friends love on her was the absolute best!

She went to her first church service (which she tooted the whole way through). She got to help surprise a much deserved birthday girl. She got to meet her Great Grandparents, Aunts and Uncles, cousins and second cousins, friends...everyone!!! She got lots of presents, cuddles and love!

It was a great trip and we can't wait to see everyone again soon!

Grandma and Grandpa Lindaman with all the grandchildren

 Eloise and Aunt Erica talking about how cool her Mom and Dad are. Right, Erica? ;)

Sweet cousin, Charlie! Just missing a picture with her cousin, Jack. He was a little too busy being a boy! :) 

Aunt Theresa and Aunt Erica and of course Ellie in her Grandma gear!

Cousins Alza, Lakin and Broden

Great Grandma Case

Bath time with Grandma and Great Grandma

Getting cuddles from Aunt Terri and watching cousin Nora play dress up. She put on quite the show singing many songs from Frozen. That girl is an entertainer! ;) 

Great Grandma McGregor

Great Grandpa McGregor and cousin, Halle

Cuddles with Aunt Missy and Aunt Megan

Meeting cousin Greta, who clearly wanted her socks! Do you blame her? :)

Christmas morning

"That's enough of the pictures, Mom."

Hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! 
We can't wait to see what 2017 brings! 

Sleep Deprived Sleep Talking

Tuesday, January 17, 2017
The last 2 and a half months have been...how do I put this...slightly, uh, tiring?

We are exhausted. All we do is clean, change diapers, sometimes we get to shower and eat a hot meal in the same day but most of all, we day dream about getting a full night of uninterrupted sleep.

Yes - it's all worth it. Yes - we love her very much. But yes - we also miss sleeping (and eating a hot meal, and enjoying a nice long hot shower, and date night).

Because we are running on fumes most of the time, my hilarious sleep talking husband has been in top notch when it comes to our 3am conversations.

The other night I woke up not feeling well. When I climbed back into bed, Jordan gave me a look as if to say, "Where the hell were you?"

Me: "I don't feel well."
Jordan: "Maybe because you're sleeping on a board of old fish."

I wish I was making this up.

Hope you're all getting some good nights sleep. Send one our way!

Dear Husband and Soon-to-be Daddy...

Sunday, January 15, 2017
While I was pregnant, I wrote as a form of stress reliever. While looking through some of the things I wrote, I found this. I never posted it. I never even shared it with Jordan. I kept it to myself but now, I think I'll share.

For all you soon to be Daddy's out there, here's a little insight into what goes through your very hormonal and very pregnant soon-to-be Momma.

Dear Husband...

I can't sleep but I could sleep all day! It doesn't make sense. I know! But, I'm tired all the time. In everything I do through out the entirety of my day...I'm tired. But, when I try, I CAN'T SLEEP! I try everything I can to get a little shut eye for myself, for our unborn daughter and even for you but it doesn't always work. Mainly because I'm sooo uncomfortable. So, if I fall asleep on the couch or tell you that I'm going to lay down, please let me because maybe, just maybe, I will be able to actually get a little shut eye.

These hormones are a bitch. I found myself crying to a cereal commercial one day. It wasn't even cry worthy but I was balling like a baby. If a patient yells at me at work, it makes me want to cry. If I'm frustrated, I want to cry. I just want to cry all the time. I know you know I'm not weak but I need you to understand this baby makes me crazy and when I'm crazy, it doesn't help to hear I'm being crazy. So, let me have those hormonal moments every now and then. Don't worry - I totally see my crazy and try my hardest to stop it.

Food is a constant battle. Please don't let me run out of hot tamales, fruit popsicles, apples and please don't drink the last of the chocolate milk. Why? This is not meant to be selfish. It's just that nothing ever sounds good to eat so when I crave something (which majority of the time is one of the above), I need it and I need it now. Oh - and please stop with the popcorn. The smell makes me want to gag!!!

I'm constantly checking myself out in the mirror. No - it's not because I think I'm hot stuff. It's because I love to see my belly growing and I love to see how different my body can look from one day to the next. Every day, I'm amazed by the amount of change that can occur in 24 hours.

I constantly ache. These stretching pains are no joke! She's growing so quickly and my body is trying to keep up with her but I'm constantly achey. Especially when I wake up in the morning. She must party all night?

You are ALWAYS on my mind. Always. I think about you all day. I think about what you're thinking, feeling, seeing, experiencing. I want to know how you are dealing with all of this change. I want to know if it's even hit you that our world is about to be rocked in t-minus 3 months. I want to know if you wonder what she will look like, act like, sound like, what foods she will like, her favorite color...like I do.

I can't wait to see what you're like with her. I can't wait to see you hold her for the first time, kiss her, rock her to sleep, change her diaper, feed her, make her laugh. I can't wait to see how you discipline her, talk with her, hang out with her, cheer her on and everything in between. I told you I think about you all the time!!!

I love to see you excited about her. Watching you paint her room, precisely put together her crib, talk about how cute her little clothes we have hanging in her closet are...makes me melt. Please never stop being excited about her!

I'm so in love with you. Going through this experience with you has only made me love you more. To be honest, I didn't know that was possible! Keep being the amazing person you are.

Newborn Survival Products You Didn't Know You Need

Thursday, January 12, 2017
Since having Eloise, I've been asked by a few beautiful and new expecting Momma's I know, "What are your must have items you can't live without?" Everyone is different but to help, I thought I'd start by sharing what I can't live without.

1. Plugin Light Dimmer
First and foremost, get yourself a light dimmer. I can't stress this one enough. This is by far my best baby buy!!! For those middle of the night party sessions, this has allowed me to only use the amount of light I need to see but not too much that it fully wakes her up. Seriously. This is my number one answer when others have asked me what they should buy or register for. GET THIS. I mean it!

We use this light dimmer and bought it at Lowes but it's also available on Amazon. I even pack it up when we head out of town. Life saver! Click here to buy!

2. Milk Snob Carseat Cover
I tried the Velcro carseat cover that you see everyone using and I hated it. The Velcro straps kept sliding everywhere and the sides were always open allowing the cold wind to get in at my sweet baby. Then I found the Milk Snob cover and it was like the angels started singing. This cover provides coverage around the entire carseat but allows you to be able to peek in at baby from the top because the fabric is so stretchy.

A plus to this cover... it keeps strangers in Walmart from touching and poking at your clean, germ free baby. Can we all agree the touching other peoples baby's you don't know thing needs to stop?

This is the cover I bought and love. I've been stopped in public many times asking where I got it. The name might be strange but the product doesn't disappoint. Click here to shop!

3. Diaper Caddy/Basket
If you're like us and change baby on the couch in the living room, do yourself a favor and get yourself a diaper caddy or a basket. Instead of running back and forth to the nursery, everything you need can be transported room by room or just stay tucked away in the living room.

This isn't the one we use but you get the point! :)

4. Binky Holder
My Mother-in-Law got me a binky holder that attaches to Eloise's carseat. It's the best! Instead of having to dig through the diaper bag to find the mute button, it's in a fast and easy to grab place all the time.

I believe the holder I have, my MIL bought at a local place in Iowa but I found these online that are similar. Click here to shop! ...Or here!

5. Burp Rags
Get all the burp rags you can! You will use them constantly.

I like the burp rags from Target but Jordan found some bigger ones at Walmart that he likes. Mine absorb better but his are much wider which are nice for the Daddy's shoulders.

6. Nose Frida
Yes, it's gross. Yes, you might gag. However, when your little one is so congested and is struggling to breath, your Momma bear instinct jumps in and will do just about anything to help them out. 

During the first two weeks after Eloise was born, she was very congested. the Doctor said it was normal for newborns to be congested because they are still trying to get rid of everything they breathed in while in the womb. That's all fine and dandy but my baby girl couldn't breath well and I had to do something about it. The normal bulb nose sucker didn't help and instead just irritated her tiny cute nose. Finally, Jordan and I gave in and bought the Nose Frida and loved it! Jordan (who gag's at everything) was the one who did it to her the most and he had no problem with it. I think it helps when you hear and see the difference it makes for your baby. Buy it here!

Now... as for the FridaBaby Windi...that's still a grey area for us. If you are brave and get it, let me know how it works!

7. Free Prints App
This isn't a must have but it's a nice to have. I downloaded this app a long time ago but didn't really start using it until I started to collect a buttload of pictures of Eloise on my phone and no way to really keep them around. Now at the end of every month, I'm ordering prints of all the pictures I took that month and storing them in a tub I've already started with her keepsakes in it. You can never start organizing too early, right? ;)

Hope this helps! :)


Sunday, January 8, 2017
My oh my how time is flying by! My little baby is already two months old (well, two months and a week old...I'm behind!)

Dec 14 - 10lbs 4oz
Jan 6 - 11lbs 10oz and 23 1/2 inches long

Ellie, Lou, Lill (her middle name) and my favorite, Pumpkin (because she's a Halloween baby...duh!)

Follows us with her head
Interacts with you when you play with her
Smiles all the time
Loves to do dramatic 5 minute stretches after every nap/waking up in the morning
Sleeps 4-6 hours at a time at night
Eats 4-5 ounces
Coo's and gurgles any chance she gets

Smiling is her favorite!
Purses her lips

First trip to Iowa/out of state
First Christmas
First time meeting her great grandparents, more aunts and uncles and cousins
First roadtrip. She was the best road tripper ever (9 whole hours!)
...all of these firsts are will be shared on a blog post soon!

Likes to lay flat on her back
Loves when Mom and Dad talk to her
Her binky
Looking at herself in the mirror

Tummy time
Laying on her belly against your chest
....actually, just being on her belly in general!

This is more embarrassing for Eloise than it is me....we were heading to a surprise party when Eloise pooped (a lot but somehow managed to not blow out of her diaper). As I was changing her, she started pushing out even more almost all over my hands. Thankfully I was quick enough and put her diaper back under her before it went everywhere!

I had multiple favorite moments this month. When she got to meet her Great Grandparents,  Aunts and Uncles and cousins. I loved watching everyone love her up!

"Gagging when Ellie almost pooped all over you!"

"Every time she attempts to laugh. It comes out as more of a loud yell but you can tell she wants to laugh. It's the best!"

We love you so much, Pumpkin!

Post Pregnancy Struggles No One Tells You About

Wednesday, January 4, 2017
It wasn't until I was sitting down with my sister-in-law over Christmas and she started to ask me questions no one had asked me yet. She didn't ask me the typical "how is she sleeping?" or "is she eating ok?" questions like everyone else. She asked me the blunt, real and raw questions. The questions that everyone else is too scared to ask.

Those questions opened me up and I just let it all come out. It felt so good to tell someone how I really felt during the first few weeks after Eloise was born without being judged but instead being completely understood and told that it was all normal.

My intent for this blog post isn't to scare you or make you feel awful but instead to hopefully help you know it's all ok and totally normal when you have those days that you feel utterly crazy and lost. After all, I wish that someone would have told me about the normal struggles almost every new Mom experiences.

1. It's not always love at first sight. All those women
 who say, "I was in love with her the second I saw her" isn't telling the whole truth. Or maybe they are? Either way, it's totally normal to love your baby but not be completely in love with them yet.

When I first saw Eloise, of course I loved her but I wasn't in love with her. I didn't fall in love with her until a few days after she was born. It's not that I didn't care about her or anything but it was more of a, "I don't know this person yet" kind of feeling. Don't worry, you will love your baby when she arrives but you won't believe just how hard you fall in love with them over time. Just know you're not alone and I promise that true Mother's love feeling will come! Give it some time.

2. There will be times that you feel lost and alone. There is a lot of change happening. Your life literally just changed in the blink of an eye. It's normal to look at that tiny monster and think, "what now?"

I'll never forget the night that I was holding Eloise, sitting on the couch and I looked down at her and just felt so lost. I felt empty and alone. I kept asking myself, what's supposed to happen now?

Again - this is normal! Between the drastic amount of change happening around you and the crazy rushing hormones, you're going to get a bit of the "Baby Blues." Just like I said before, give this some time as well. I promise it goes away.

3. Don’t think you need to do all the work. Let your husband share the load. This was one that took me a few weeks to understand. I kept thinking, since I’m Mom, I need to be getting up with her, feeding her, bathing her, rocking her. No! Let Dad in on some of it too. After all, it’s very important for Dad to bond with baby as well.

I literally made myself sick trying to be Super Mom/Super Wife/Super Housewife. It was too much and thankfully my husband saw me struggling and came in to save me. He's a true Super Dad!

4. A new baby will test your marriage. For the first month after Eloise was born, Jordan and I didn't see eye to eye. We were so happy to finally have our baby girl here but at the same time we just didn't understand each other and honestly, it was all my fault!

Let me explain: Normally, if you ask me to share my feelings, I’m very open and will share away. But, Jordan will also tell you, I can also hide my feelings really well if I want to. If I'm sad and don't want you to know about it, I will hide it like I was hired to keep the president alive. This is a flaw. Why? Because if I would have just opened up to Jordan during that first month of what was actually going on in my head (the sadness, loneliness, feeling of being lost) we could have avoided the chaos.

If there is any advice I want you to take from this, it's to open up and share how you are feeling! Not only will it help your partner understand what you are going through and have him help out more but he may be feeling the same way and you both can then work through it together.

After all, a child wants nothing more than for their parents to love each other.

5. You're going to feel uncomfortable for weeks. When I was about to pop, I couldn't get Eloise out fast enough. All I thought was, I'll finally be comfortable again! Yeah - that was cute. You will be swollen for a few days and uncomfortable for weeks, unless you get a c-section then I can imagine you are a little more uncomfortable than the rest of us. 

6. You're going to be soooo tired. You're body isn't used to being woken up every two hours to feed a hungry little monster and no matter how hard you try, you won't always be able to sleep when baby is sleeping. Can we all agree that advice gets annoying after hearing it 100 times? I tried, I really did, to sleep when Eloise was sleeping throughout the day but I couldn't.

7. This is the beginning of a new and amazing chapter in your life. Even through all the chaos, and ups and downs, you will never feel as much joy as you do with your new baby. Every new change brings highs and lows, just know that the highs will greatly outweigh the lows.

Eloise is two months old now and I can honestly say I've never been more happy than I am right now (as I sit with a fussy baby in my arms trying to type this up!). I better go...baby runs the show around here! Enjoy every second of motherhood you beautiful soon-to-be Momma's!

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