Moms And Babies - Amber






This week I'm featuring my dear blog friend, Amber from His Grace Is Sufficient! Amber's blog was the very first blog I followed, and she was my very first follower. We've become good friends over the years, and last year I was thrilled to learn she was pregnant and due just a couple months after me! She is warm and friendly (even over the internet!), and I love reading her blog. Read on to learn more about her.

Tell us a little about yourself.

I'm a 20-something year old wife to Corey and momma to Eden. Corey and I have been married 3 years but together for 7. I occasionally work for my landlady (who is also a church friend) helping in her home office a few hours a week and get to bring the baby with me. I'm hoping to built a clientele before too long and work on refinishing furniture pieces. It was something I planned to start last year, but I got pregnant (pregnancy and paint fumes don't mix well). I'm hoping to get back into the swing of things by the end of the year.



What's your baby's name and how old is she?

Our baby girl's name is Eden Grace and she is 4 1/2 months old!

Give us an idea of what a typical day looks like for you.

Oh boy...this depends on if it's the weekend or weekday and whether I'm working or not. For the sake of keeping this shorter, I'll go with a non-working weekday. Eden is usually up between 7am and 8am. She nurses and gets a fresh diaper. We play in bed for an hour or so. I stick her in the rock-n-play and bring it in the bathroom while I shower and get ready for the day. By the time I'm done getting ready, she's usually hungry again. She nurses and then plays on her activity mat while I eat breakfast and try to catch up on blogs or pay bills online. She goes in her swing for a nap between 11am and noon. She usually sleeps for 2 - 2 1/2 hours. While she naps, I have some "me" time. This is typically when I read my bible/journal and then get to other "me" tasks. What I do varies but is typically one of the follow: making lunch and watching something on netflix, cleaning up the house and doing some laundry, take a nap of my own, and sometimes I craft. It really just depends. Once she's up (usually around 2), she's ready to nurse again. If I have any errands to run, this is when I do them. Otherwise we just have play time on the activity mat, I read to her, sing to her, etc. Just mommy-baby time. She will usually take another 30-45 minute nap between 3 and 5pm. Corey's work schedule can vary pretty greatly. If I know he's going to be home by 4 or 5pm, I'll wait to start dinner until he's home and can occupy her for a bit. Otherwise I bring her in the kitchen and stick her in the boppy while I work on dinner. If it's a bath day (we do baths every couple days at this point...we'll go to every day when she's more mobile), she gets a bath around 7:30pm. Once she's out, it's usually snuggle time with daddy while I fold some laundry, wash dishes, vacuum, etc. She nurses again and goes down for bed around 8:30 or 9, and then it's Corey and Amber time until we hit the sack around 10:30 or so. She usually wakes up 2 or 3 times during the night to eat before we start the whole process over again :) On the weeks Corey is out of town for work, the swing and carrier get a LOT of use!

If you had to choose three words to describe your baby's personality, what would they be?

Determined, curious, loving



What's your favorite part about being a mom?

Oh...it's hard to pick. I love pretty much every part of it. I guess my two favorite things are probably watching her learn new skills all the time and developing those skills, and I love to see her smile and laugh. Funny how one smile can just melt you!


Do you have any tips on losing the baby weight?

I'm probably the wrong person to ask. I started pregnancy being underweight...I've struggled with maintaining a good weight my whole life (I have super high metabolism and borderline thyroid issues). I've always been about 10-15 lbs below a "normal" BMI. I gained about 35 lbs during my pregnancy, which was a good thing and felt really healthy. I had actually hoped to KEEP about 10 lbs of the baby weight afterward to put me in the "normal" range. I kept it at first, but I'm almost back to the pre-pregnancy weight now. I think it's probably because I don't eat as many calories as I should (supposed to eat 3000 a day to get my weight back up...which is basically impossible when you're running around the house with a baby!) and I nurse her. I know this probably sounds ridiculous to many of you, but it really is a challenge for me. Thankfully, I've been able to maintain a good milk supply thus far despite being a little underweight, but it's something I worry or get anxious about often and have to give it to the Lord!

What have you and your husband done since your baby's arrival to keep your relationship strong?

The couple of hours between when Eden goes to sleep and we go to sleep is our time. Computers go off, phones get put on chargers in the other room, and it's just us. What we do varies. Sometimes we watch a movie or play a game. Other times we might bake together. Sometimes we'll make coffee and/or tea and sit and talk. And other times (not to get awkward on you all, but it's important to make time for this!) we go to the bedroom if you know what I mean. We also take advantage of her naps on the weekend to be intimate. I really believe that intimacy is key in maintaining a good marriage. I find that we bicker less, respect each other more, and generally just get along better when we purposefully make time for that aspect of our marriage. I got some excellent advice from a good friend right before I got married. She said "never say no to love-making." I will be honest in saying there are times I've said no, but because of what she said, I purpose in my heart to set my selfish desires aside and say "yes" to my husband as often as possible. I think our marriage is better because of that. We're both blessed by it. So even when I'm exhausted and just want to sleep from a long day, I know that my husband also needs me. I think it's even more important now because so much of my time is devoted to Eden that it can be easy to forget about him and being more than just a house-wife and mom; I'm also a lover.

Are there any must-have products that you would recommend to other moms?

If you have a clingy baby like I do, you NEED a carrier of some sort. That thing is the only way I get stuff done around the house sometimes. I think another wonderful thing are the Aden & Anais muslin blankets. LOVE those. And she loves them too. They're lightweight enough for summer, but they work great as swaddlers, burp clothes, car seat covers, nursing covers, for putting on the floor for her to play on, etc. I use them for everything. Another thing are washable nursing pads. The disposable ones can get pretty pricey, especially when you are first establishing your supply and going through quite a few. I have both the Bamboobies and the Natural Organic Cotton ones and love them. And last, but not least, a swing. I guess not all babies love swings, but that is the only way I can get mine to nap.

What has been your favorite moment or outing as a family so far?

I'd probably have to say either our day at the beach or our recent play date. Eden LOVES the outdoors, so the beach was a blast for her. And I had a good friend and her baby boy over (he's a month older than Eden) a few weeks ago. We were sitting on the couch chatting, and decided to put the babies sitting right next to each other facing so they could interact. Her boy starting giggling. Eden started cracking up at him laughing, and then he laughed at her laughing at him...and on it went. It was a good 5 or 6 minutes of laughter and hilarity. She and I were laughing so hard we were in tears. Neither of us had seen our babies react like that to another baby, so it was really fun.



Any advice for first-time mothers?

Follow your motherly instincts. Seriously. Just do what feels right to YOU. Even though it's your first baby, it's like God put a built-in mommy mechanism. You know your baby better than anyone else, so stick with what you think is best for YOU and YOUR baby. What works for some moms/babies may not work for others. Also, I would say not to hesitate calling your pediatrician's nurse hotline. It put my mind at ease a few times when I was unsure about something to call and talk to the nurse. That's what they're there for. They're used to new mommies having questions and uncertainties. Finally, PRAY for your baby! When you're unsure about something, pray. When your baby is sick, pray. When your baby is fussing and crying for seemingly no reason...pray! Pray for their future spouse, for every little body part, for their dreams and thoughts, for the lives the Lord has planned for them, etc.


Thanks Amber! Check out Amber's blog to read more!



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Dove of Snow said...

Wonderful! I loved this post. Thank you, Amber, for sharing such sound, sweet advice and a glimpse into your life and your adorable baby girl! Loved the entire article. :)

Oh, quick note: I am giving away a book I read and enjoyed on my blog, so please, if you're interested in entering to win a free book go to http://doveofsnow.blogspot.com Thank you! Pass on the word if you'd like, as I could always have more followers and I know there are gals out there wanting free books!

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