Elyse is 8 weeks old this week! yikes! She is growing so fast! In the past 8 weeks we have definitely discovered some things that are working wonderfully & others that she doesn't really care about...babies are certainly all completely different & you never know what will work for one baby over another, but here are just a few of Elyse's favorite things and also a few of my momma must-haves!
The Halo Sleep Sacks--seriously these things are like magic! Elyse loves to be swaddled! We originally swaddled her arms up at her chin with her elbows bent because that's how it seemed she was in the womb; however once she got a bit older she would get her arms out and then startle herself awake while she was dreaming. Once we started swaddling her arms down she slept so much more soundly and for much longer periods of time! We have 4 of these that are on constant rotation!
With a December baby & the fact that Hubby & I like to get out of the house, we knew we needed something to keep Elyse cozy in her carseat. I found this JJ Cole Urban Bundle Me at one of our local specialty stores, but it's also available at Babies R Us. This is such a wonderful thing. It's stretched onto the carseat & zips at the bottom. The top part just kind of flops over making it easy to leave on when she's in the car. We just flop back the top part and she can still see out! Kind of hard to explain, but a fabulous purchase!
We started putting Elyse in her crib in her own room less than 2 weeks after we came home. No one was sleeping very soundly including Elyse! One night after her last feeding and when she was practically asleep I swaddled her up, placed her in her crib, and turned on her Sleep Sheep. We all slept much better that night and we've never looked back. We start the "whales" on her sheep every night before she goes to bed and I use it most days for her nap as well. This sheep isn't necessarily magic, but I would definitely recommend some sort of noise maker.
I had always hoped to be able to breastfeed and I knew that inevitably I would have to feed Elyse either while in the car or somewhere that wasn't in the comfort of my own home. And of course that happened only a few days after coming home when we were at one of my family Christmas celebrations. I wouldn't consider myself a crazy modest person, but I also wasn't about to just breastfeed Elyse out in the open. I decided to buy a stylish nursing cover/apron and it was the perfect solution. It's definitely made those otherwise very awkward feeding times much more comfortable for everyone!
When deciding on a swing/bouncy seat for Elyse, we had originally planned on getting the Fisher Price Snugabunny series. However, Hubby found the Mamaroo at our local baby store & fell in love. With our fairly small living room the Mamaroo took up so much less space & we decided that it could serve both purposes....a swing & a bouncy seat in one. For Elyse it has worked just fine and she enjoys being in the Mamaroo when I'm fixing dinner or folding laundry. My mom does have the Fisher Price bouncy seat & Elyse seems to love that too, of course every baby is different & has their own preference.
This probably goes without saying, but every mom should have a Boppy or something similar. My mom made a Boppy cover from a pattern she found at a local fabric store & we used the fabric from Elyse's nursery to make it a little more fun! The Boppy is great for nursing, but also wonderful for when your arms are just tired or when you need to sit your baby down for a bit and want them to be able to sit up just slightly on their own.
During our hospital stay, Elyse seemed to have these mid-afternoon breakdowns and we knew it wasn't because she was hungry or dirty...she was just unhappy. Hubby & I had decided that we hoped to keep Elyse from being a thumb-sucker so we made the decision to try and give her a pacifier to soothe her. She took to it right away and it instantly seemed to calm her. I realize that some moms are completely against a pacifier & are concerned with nipple confusion; however, I didn't ever experience any confusion problems & the pacifier seems to make her happy when nothing else will. A happy baby definitely makes for a happy momma...so a pacifier it is! We eventually switched from the hospital issued Soothies to a Nuk just because she can keep it in her mouth easier.
I'm sure there will be other things that become favorites as time passes, but for now these are the things that are must-haves for our family!