You and Me & Chasing Little G

Trello Hacks: Organizing Your Grocery List

TrelloSabra GilbertComment

THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. THAT MEANS IF YOU USE THEM TO MAKE A PURCHASE, I'LL EARN ENOUGH MONEY FROM THAT SALE TO MAYBE BUY GEMMA SOMETHING PRETTY - BECAUSE CLOTH DIAPERS ARE ADORABLE.


Physical grocery lists ALWAYS get lost in my house.

It’s just doomed to happen and there is no saving it. It gets lost on the way to the store. Or it falls off the fridge and a dog eats it. Or now I even have a baby who thinks that paper is the best snack in the world. facepalm. So going digital was the way to go for us. But many “grocery list” apps drive me crazy. They just have a single list or the list is broken up into catagories that just don’t work for me. See, Simeon and I are bargin shoppers. We know where to get some of the cheapest food for basics, but also like to go to different stores for better quality meats or produce. And most apps, you can’t label what store you want to get the item from.

Enter Trello.

I had already started my love affair with trello months before I decided that this was where we were going to house our grocery list. Actually, I wrote about it on the blog for Beauty Bright Design. It also shares a peak at one of the ways that I have tried doing a grocery list board in the past. But Simeon didn’t like it that much, so we are onto idea two which is much simpler! But I’ll be sharing both ways in case it works better for you the other way as well!


But Why is Trello So Amazing for Grocery Shopping Lists?

1 || Update on the Go - Ever see an amazing meal on TV or have a random thought in the bathroom about how you are almost out of toilet paper? Has that thought ever made it to the kitchen to put these items on a grocery list? Very rarely. I love being able to just pop Trello up ON MOBILE and add whatever I need. It’s perfect.

2 || Connect with Your Spouse - Gone are the days of accidentally starting two separate grocery lists and someone not getting what the other person needs. We are both on this board TOGETHER and can see if the other person has already added something, or if one person is actively at the grocery store, they can see what the other is adding in real time. No more calling the other person a million times during one shopping trip! Just update Trello and shoot a quick text or turn on notifications that something has changed!

3 || Less Waste - Once a list is used, it is soo hard to re-use it. You probably crossed things off, the paper got crumbled, or it got smeared to high heaven when you dropped it in that puddle. So you grab another piece of paper and another and another. Going digital starts to slow down your carbon footprint and it’s just a small change you can make today to start going ZeroWaste.


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So first things, first.

If you don’t have Trello already, SIGN UP NOW! Seriously, how have you lived your life so far?!? Then go ahead and make a Home Team, this is so you can link up with anyone in your household that needs to be adding things to the grocery list.


Route #1 Of How to Build Your Trello Grocery List


Make Your Lists

This is the meal planning and grocery list all in one package! It starts with 5 Lists: Grocery List, Dinner Ideas, Lunch Idea, Breakfast Ideas, Snack Ideas. You can also add more lists if needed (Drink Recipes, Baby Food Recipes, Dessert Recipes, etc)

Trello Grocery & Meal Planning Example
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Filling in Your Lists

Start by filling in your lists with all your favorite recipes. Use the checklists to list your ingredients (this is the most important part!) and then in the description, you can link to the actual recipe if needed. Or type it out. Or if you have it memorized just leave it blank :)

Putting the ingredients in the checklist is important because you can change checklist items into cards for your actual grocery list in the first list. It does make the item disappear from the checklist, but you can duplicate the checklist before you change things over.

Organizing Your Grocery List

I go to multiple different stores when I grocery shop, so I LOVE to color code on this grocery list which items I get from which stores and put them in the order of those labels.


Route #2 of Building Your Grocery Shopping List


This is the method that we currently use and is the easiest to use. The board simply has the places that we shop listed and we put the items that we need in each list as we go. We do our meal planning on Google Calendar now because it gives us a good look at our day in one glance.

Simple Trello Grocery List

It takes a lot less maintenance and is very simple. It was how we originally used the board, but then I thought I could improve on it. For people who have the Type A personality or don’t have a new baby clinging to them, it still works great, but we need something that is simple for now. Meal planning that we can easily just move around. Grocery lists that we can easily transfer to grocery pick up sights.

How to Fight For Your Breastfeeding Relationship

MotherhoodSabra GilbertComment

AS AN AMAZON ASSOCIATE, I EARN FROM QUALIFYING PURCHASES. THIS POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. THAT MEANS IF YOU USE THEM TO MAKE A PURCHASE, I'LL EARN ENOUGH MONEY FROM THAT SALE TO MAYBE BUY GEMMA SOMETHING PRETTY - BECAUSE CLOTH DIAPERS ARE ADORABLE.


I’m going to start with the obvious.

Breastfeeding is so freaking hard

I knew from the get go that I wanted to breastfeed. There was no doubt in my mind that I was going to make it work. And even if I struggled, I was going to fight tooth and nail for every second I could get breastmilk to my daughter. I knew that I had worlds of science against the thought of me even trying this journey. But I was going to do it anyway.

Screw infertility. Screw PCOS. Screw having a cesarian section. I was going to breastfeed my daughter!

And with knowing that I had the world against me. I did a crazy amount of research on how to fight for breastfeeding.

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Now before I go too far, I want to point out that this is NOT a formula bashing post. It just wasn’t what I wanted for my daughter. And as a mother, I am allowed to say that. I can fight for my breastfeeding relationship and NOT be bashing the mother who chose to formula feed.

In the world of Fed is Best, I believe that it has suddenly made it so that encouraging and celebrating breastfeeding is bad. It is somehow shaming other mothers who did not choose or could not go down the breastfeeding path. That is not what I am doing. But I am providing support for those who have decided as I have that there is no other option. I don’t want to give formula because I strongly believe that breast milk is biologically better for my child. My body literally makes this JUST FOR HER, not some generic recipe that works for most babies. It is OK that others have decided the same as well. It is OK that others have decided that that is not their path as well.


It has not been easy. Doctors tell me that my body is naturally working against me with my PCOS. Women who struggle with infertility often struggle with the hormones that make the precious milk that i wanted to provide Gemma. Then I had a long and strenuous labor. I had a cesarean section. Gemma swallowed meconium and I didn’t get her on my chest until fifteen minutes after she was born. It was another half hour before I could even try to position her to breastfeed without a sheet draped over my body. Then there was the issue of her weight. She was born a big baby. Big babies struggle with their sugar levels. Big babies from cesarean sections tend to drop more than 10% of their body weight. Her latch was shallow. She struggled to gain weight. She’s still skinny.

Gemma has never had a drop of formula. Or even donor milk.

She has been 100% mama fed and this has ALWAYS been supported by my husband and pediatrician.

And you can do this too! Set yourself up for success straight from the get go.


Before Baby Is Born


Educate Yourself on Breastfeeding

Guys, THIS CLASS, take it. Love it. It really is amazing! Simeon and I watched it together in the weeks before Gemma was born and it taught us so much. Milkology

Find a Pediatrician Who Will Support Breastfeeding

Everyday, I see mama’s in my breastfeeding support groups who ARE NOT being supported by their children’s doctors. Who are actually telling them that formula is better and that there is no way their child will thrive on breast milk. While this may be the case in a baby here and there, I think way too many women are being told this.

I have been so blessed to have a pediatric office that has a certified IBCLC pediatrician that also educates all of the doctors on staff to support breastfeeding mothers. Even with Gemma gaining weight slowly, they have always been supportive of our journey. Telling me that Gemma’s weight wasn’t a major concern (especially with her father’s figure) and to just keep doing what we are doing! Even when I was personally concerned, we did weighted feeds and were educated more by the IBCLC.

Get Items to Support Your Breastfeeding Journey

While breastfeeding is “cheaper” than formula, there are still supplies you need to get ready to breastfeed! Your nipples will hurt. Baby will sometimes still need a bottle (so you can get a break!). And you will have cravings. Not to mention getting comfy, dealing with leaking, and catching all that extra milk!

Haaka’s are amazing for catching the milk you leak and helping you build up a milk stash. I have the NatureBond brand which works amazingly as well!

For soothing your newly put to work nipples, I feel in love with Earth Mama Nipple Cream and Soothies.

I also don’t think I would have survived those early days without my boppy. And check out this adorable cover! I might need to get it for LIttle G #2!

Talk to Your Spouse about Breastfeeding

THIS IS SO CRITICAL! If you don’t have support in your Spouse, breastfeeding can go south so quickly! Simeon would have to pick Gemma up for me to feed her in the beginning because of my unplanned c-section. He also had to cheer me on through the days of tears when it seemed like Gemma and I were never going to get it. He cheered me on through the multiple weight check appointments where I questioned if we were making the right decision. And proudly would count up the ounces in the freezer so I would know that I made plenty of milk for our baby girl. His support was CRITICAL to my breastfeeding confidence with Gemma.

Not only do you need your husband on your side when it comes to breastfeeding in general, but discuss your plans for when you are out in public and baby gets hungry. Now I do warn you that this is a topic that many men are uncomfortable with. Simeon was too. But I laid out my feelings and listened to his concerns as well. We came up with a game plan. I would try to usually feed Gemma before we went somewhere or even in the car before going in anywhere. If she still needed fed while we were out and about, I used the two shirt method. If I was somewhere that I didn’t feel comfortable breastfeeding without a cover, we keep a light muslin swaddle in the diaper bag. This is something that I see couples fighting over ALL THE TIME. Don’t be bullied, but don’t be a bully either. You both just want what is best for baby. So compromise.

Find out Any Concerns with Breastfeeding

As I have explained before, I have PCOS. This can be a major concern with breastfeeding as well. I knew this from the get go and so I was not surprised when at my first IBCLC appointment, it was brought up. I was warned again that it might be a hindrance in having this wonderful relationship with my daughter. Hormones, they rule everything that your body can do.

Since I knew ahead of time what I was going to be up against, I was able to research and be prepared for these concerns from doctors. I also already had the mindset that I was going to have to work a million times harder than most mothers to even begin this journey, which is why I did my best to set everything else up as perfectly as possible.

Create a Birth Plan

Which brings me to my birth plan. While I didn’t get everything that I wanted in my birth, I still did the best research I could to set us up for breastfeeding success from the get go. This included taking a natural birthing course, and letting nurses know exactly what I wanted to happen immediately after birth. I came to the hospital with multiple copies. Next time I plan to even frame one and prop it up so that it is immediately noticeable to staff caring for me. It wasn’t long or excessive and would fit perfectly in just one paper sized frame.

Find Your Breastfeeding Support Group

I will say this over and over again. You DO NOT have to do this alone. Even if you are the first in your family to breastfeed in generations. Even if none of your friends breastfeed. Mama, you have so many people that will gladly join your team, including me! I am a part of two breastfeeding facebook groups that I adore: Milky Mamas and Breast, Bottle & Beyond. You can learn from mamas who have already been there. Have solidarity with mamas doing the same thing as you (there always seems to be one middle of the night “whose up feeding their baby right now too?!” post somewhere! Some cities also have in person groups where you can bond and ask questions with moms in your area!


After Baby Is Born


Baby to Breast ASAP

This is something that I freaked out about the most when they started wheeling me down for my cesarean section. I was worried that I wasn’t going to be able to breastfeed Gemma as soon as I wanted. My dream had been for Gemma to pop out and for her to immediately be put on my chest to latch while we waited for her chord to cease pumping. I didn’t get that dream. Not only was my chest covered by a sheet and she had to be put practically on my neck when I got to see her finally, but Gemma had swallowed meconium as well and had to be suctioned before I ever got to see her. BUT they did encourage latching as soon as I was in the recovery room. As soon as they were done stitching me up, she was skin to skin with me and having her first meal.

Skin to Skin As Much As Possible

The more time that you can spend directly skin to skin with your baby, the better. This may mean putting up some rules in your birth plan, such as if anyone is going to be squeamish about seeing your skin or breasts, they might just need to wait until you get home to visit. It’s ok to stand up for your bonding with your new baby. You don’t have to hand her off right away so another family member can see her. You don’t have to put a shirt on if it is just going to get in your way. You just birthed a baby that you’ve been baking for 10 months. You get to make the rules!

See a Lactation Consultant in the Hospital

Even with all the education and videos to watch in the world, latching your baby is still a completely different story when you go to do it. It’s great to have a professional take a glance at your latch and make sure that you are doing great. It also is nice to have someone take a peak into baby’s mouth and check for any tongue or lip ties that might make breastfeeding more painful.

Immediately Communicate ANY Issue with your LC, Pediatrician, and Spouse.

If you think there is ANY issue. ANYTHING at all. Tell someone right away. Don’t let it get to the point that your nipples are gushing blood or that baby is loosing weight. If you have any question or concern, work with the professionals to figure out the answer. I was so happy that our pediatrician for the first few weeks was also a IBCLC. We were doing weight checks on Gemma for a few days after coming home from the hospital because she was slow to gain weight. But with working with someone who is a professional at breastfeeding, we were able to get weighted feeds at her appointments and be given advice on the best ways to latch her and keep her awake for feeding! I was re-assured that breastfeeding was the right path and so excited for it. We were able to trouble shoot and figure out any issues before they became major.

Many mothers seem scared to go to their pediatrician with any problems with breastfeeding because they fear they will be pushed into formula immediately. If you don’t think that you can trust the people that you are working with to raise your baby, you need to re-evaluate who you have allowed into your babies life. Any professional that is in your child’s life still should work with you because you are mama! You made and will be raising this little being!

And don’t let any doubts bubble up in your mind alone. Go to your spouse and let them set you straight. I was soooo terrified that I wasn’t making enough milk. So Simeon would drag me in front of the freezer and show me the stash that was already building. He wouldn’t let me live in the un-true doubts that circled my head.


Mama, you got this.

Gemma's Newborn Nursery Reveal

NurserySabra GilbertComment

I hinted weeks ago that I was going to be sharing Gemma’s nursery, and I’m finally getting to it! The funniest part is that this is almost nothing of what it looks like now. These photos were taken at our maternity session when I was 37 weeks pregnant and thought I had everything perfectly laid out the way I wanted it by the time Gemma got home. Ha!

Newborn Nursery Reveal || You & Me Chasing Little G

After Gemma came home, things quickly started getting moved around. Many of the daily things needed ended up out of the nursery and heading pretty quickly to our room, where Gemma slept for the first 5 months of her life. We not only had the extra changing table and bassinet in our room, but many of the baby outfits, diapers, little toys, and all the swaddles ended up in our tiny room with all of our stuff too. I will admit that i was quite a mess in there for a while.

I will have to do a 9 months later post as well, because even since moving Gemma into her own room, so many things have changed! I finally got her a diffuser all set up. She has sooo many toys that I try to present in a Montessori inspired manner. And I miss that stockpile of things in her closet. The wipes disappeared fast! We are down to only one box left in the closet, but we have also now switched to mostly using cloth wipes as well.

I hope you enjoy and get some inspiration from her adorable little starter room!

Cloth Diaper Adventures: 8 Months In

Cloth DiaperSabra GilbertComment

Guys! I LOVE cloth diapering! Yes, after 8ish months of using them, I can still say that!


 

Hello, I’m Sabra and I’m a cloth diaper fanatic.

 

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I knew pretty early on that we needed to cloth diaper. There was just going to be no way we could afford disposable diapers (especially the brands that I wanted to use!) full time while Simeon was in school and I was working at the shelter. (Oh, have you noticed that I quit? More on that later!!) Our budgets were tight and use and throw things just weren’t going to be doable for us.

Simeon was pretty opposed at first. And then he did the math. He literally sat on our bed with a pen and paper, googled how many diapers babies go through at different stages, how much it would cost for us to buy the diapers that I wanted (Babyganics or Honest company), and figured out how much that would cost for the next two years. Then we figured out how many diapers are estimated for use a day, figured out how many we wanted in our stash, and did the math there.

You literally save thousands. And he quickly jumped on board.

But I think I will go over all the reasons I love cloth in another post. I’ll stick to an honest review and what it looks like going through the different baby stages with cloth diapers.

NEWBORN

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This was the stage that I was most nervous to use cloth diapers in. Newborn babies poop, a lot. And I was worried about how to clean them at this stage as we still didn’t have a sprayer either. But Simeon was excited to get going and after getting the majority of our diapers second hand, we had some newborn sizes that were great to use!

So we dived into using cloth diapers when Gemma was 2 weeks old. And we haven’t looked back!

Since we had a smaller stash that fit while newborn, we still used disposables when leaving the house (but even using them 50% of the time saves you tons of money!). It was also interesting trying to figure out which diapers would work for this stage since Gemma was so tiny. (By tiny I mean still over 9 lbs but a slow gainer.) So we had lots of leaking during this stage figuring out which diapers fit right and lots of nights researching how to tell if a fit was right. Save yourself a moment and save this pin. It was a lifesaver!

And then in all my cloth diaper Pinteresting, I came across the knowledge that I didn’t have to worry about poop when a baby is 100% breastfed only. Because breast milk is 100% water soluble! Meaning you can just throw those stinky diapers in the wash without them building up in the bathroom because no one wants to spray a diaper when the baby is also now hungry cause she emptied her tummy of poo. All over your wall. Because she was explosive like that (and trust me, the look on Simeon’s face was hilarious!)

Which made cloth diapering pretty easy now. We were on a great every other day schedule after going and getting some more diapers.

Starting Daycare

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So we decided not to ask our daycare to cloth diaper. We figured it would just be easier on them and us! Trying to make sure that Gemma had the right amount of diapers everyday and that we still had enough of a stash at home seemed terrifying. And with Gemma only going to daycare 3 days a week, it just made sense for us.

Honestly, this whole before solid foods stage was so easy for us. It was use them, wash every other day, prep them, and use them again. I also decided that while we were using cloth diapers, might as well use cloth wipes too! So we got some of them. And it was a dream!

We even started using cloth diapers outside of the house! We would put one or two clean diapers in a small wet bag on the go, and just swap them out when she needed a diaper change! The only thing that I had to remember is that you do have to change cloth diapers more often than disposable diapers due to them not holding as much liquid. But that’s better for their bum anyway!

Starting Solid Foods (6 Month Mark)

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This was when cloth diapering started getting a little scary. Suddenly, we had to deal with solid food poop. Which means remembering to spray them down before they go in the wash. And that has complicated our routine. We tried using biodegradable liners that we could throw in the trash. But they always seem to move  before she actually poops or we forget to place the liner and she chooses to poop that time. So we ended up spraying anyway. And I will admit that sometimes a diaper or two line up in the bathroom before they get sprayed for one reason or another.

Other than the poop part, we are still in love with cloth diapering! Making sure that the diaper is tucked in correctly in her thighs has turned into a big thing too since she is now crazy on the move and if the diaper isn’t correct, it makes a wet mess all over her cute outfits. And since I’m home now, we’re almost 100% full time cloth diapering!

Sometimes if we fall behind on the wash (coughcoughleaveitinthewasherandforgetaboutitcough) or are going out of town for the weekend and won’t have access to a washer, we still use disposable diapers. But we have never had to buy our own. We are still using a disposable diaper stash that was gifted to us or that we got on sale while I was pregnant. We’ve actually donated and sold a few unused boxes in sizes that Gemma no longer fits!

Why You Need a Fresh 48 Session

Photography, MotherhoodSabra GilbertComment

Have you even heard of a Fresh 48 newborn session?

But I'm telling you guys, you need one! There are so many things that change about your baby and yourself just while you are in the hospital. So many things that need documented in those first few days. Things that you later will realize you were way too sleep deprived to actually remember, like how wrinkly they are and squishy. Or if you are like me, in too much pain and worrying about recovering to remember. To remember where you spent your first few days with your baby.

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While you can do newborn photos once you get home, I've always been a bigger fan of lifestyle photos. (As you could probably tell from our maternity shoot!) You can capture so much more with a lifestyle shoot than just pretty faces. A Fresh 48 newborn session in the hospital means that you can catch how actually tired and worn out you are in those first few days. I know that doesn't sound pretty, but it was real life.

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Capturing Forgotten Memories

While I'll admit that the photo above isn't one of my all time favorites due to how crappy i feel like I look, it was real. The most effort I put in before this photo shoot was actually getting dressed for once while in the hospital! Though part of me even wishes that I hadn't. That I had stayed the way I had been most of my stay in the hospital. In the hospital gown and honestly, mostly topless learning to feed Gemma or doing skin to skin with her.

There is also just so much newborn newness that is already lost in the first couple of days. The first photo that I have of my daughter, she is a fluffed up little purple  thing. And already by day two when we took our photos, she's resembling more of a baby. Already learning to stretch out compared to the bunched up little baby I held the first day.  And then there is a difference waiting a week for newborn photos! So different already!

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Even just the room where we spent our first few days with Gemma. It meant so much to have photos of us sitting in the hospital bed with her or of her in her hospital bassinet that I spent times pushing around the halls while I worked on figuring out how to walk again after c-section. I'll always have those memories now. Memories I know I would have forgotten in the fog of the first few days of being a mother.

All the Baby Details

By a week out of the hospital, all her little wrinkles were gone and so were the flakes of skin that we spent that entire week trying to rid her of. (What happens when little stinkers are a week late and no longer have the vernix protecting their skin in the womb!). She’s already re-gaining the weight that she had lost those first few days (though she wouldn’t be back up to birth weight for another week or so.)

So many things change so quickly. I like to remember all the little bands they had on her feet, how tiny her feet even were those first few days.

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Capturing Baby Keepsakes

We also brought a few little goodies that we knew would be important for family members to see Gemma wrapped in right away. Handmade blankets and hats that all hold so much meaning for us. Simeon's mom had made a girl blanket 30-something years ago and then had all boys and found it for Gemma. My mom made a replica of the baby blanket/sleeping blankie I had when I was younger. And my best friend's grandmother made a sweet receiving blanket and hat for Gemma. These were things I wanted to remember right off the bat.

My little girl is turning 9 months in a few weeks. And man, the things that have changed by now are so numerous, I doubt I could write them all out in a post! She’s still a tiny squish, but her hair turned strawberry blonde! After being so, so dark in these photos! I’ll forever love this Fresh 48 Newborn session and plan to do them again and again and again!