Monthly round-up: motherhood faves

The best swaddles + making breastfeeding more comfortable

Fall is here, the kids are back in school, Starbucks has pumpkin spice lattes again – all we need now is some cooler weather in Houston!

After photographing several first-time parents and their babies over the last several weeks, I’ve been thinking a lot about what saved my sanity after each of my girls were born. Fortunately I had several friends who were veteran mamas by the time I had my first daughter and they were full of wonderful advice.

The motherhood learning curve is so steep: learning to swaddle, soothe, nurse and bathe a tiny baby. Healing after delivery. Adjusting to much less sleep than you’re used to.

In the midst of the challenges, there is so much joy. I recently photographed two brand new moms swept up in the moment of simply gazing down at their newborns. There is such beauty in those relatively minor moments. While my girls are past the baby stage, the moments when I watch them sleep soundly in their beds make my heart burst with happiness and I long to stop the clock, to keep them little forever.

I’m passing along some helpful hints from myself and other mamas today for October’s monthly round-up of motherhood faves, especially for mamas of newborns.

Swadde: Aden + Anais 

Aden + Anais swaddles are hands down my favorite! They are light enough to be used in the summer and warm enough, when paired with sleeves and pants, to be used in winter months. I often bring along a few of these adorable muslin blankets to in-home newborn sessions because of how beautifully they photograph, too. I love the simple, classic patterns and the large size means they can be used long after baby has grown out of the swaddle stage.

Breastfeeding: Lanolin 

Lanolin is a lifesaver while nursing! In fact, the hospital always sent me home with a trial-size tube after the births of my daughters. It helps ease the discomfort you might feel during the first few weeks of nursing, and it’s all natural so you don’t have to worry about any negative effects for baby. You can pick them up at the grocery store or places like Target or WalMart.

Breastfeeding: Soothies Gel Pads

Another must-have for nursing mamas: Soothies Gel Pads. You can stick them in the fridge to pop in your nursing bra for relief if you’re experiencing some soreness after nursing. Paired with Lanolin, these pads make adjusting to breastfeeding a little easier. They’re pretty easy to find at grocery stores and places like Target or WalMart.

App: The Wonder Weeks

We used The Wonder Weeks app with all three of our kids and it gave us so much insight into what was going on with the girls at different developmental stages. From their website: “How to stimulate your baby’s mental development and help him turn his 10 predictable, great, fussy phases into magical leaps forward describes the incredible mental developmental changes (leaps) and regression periods that all babies go through. Understanding the real reason behind crying, eating and sleeping problems is the only real solution every parent needs. The Wonder Weeks reveals what’s going on inside baby’s mind.” This app brought me so much peace of mind during those extra fussy periods because I understood why the girls were upset, instead of wondering if they were getting sick, teething, etc.


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