baby talk | the not so wonderful “wonder weeks”

The Wonder Weeks. An amazing time for your baby (mentally + physically) but a brutal, exhausting time for mom & dad (mainly mom, especially if you’re breastfeeding!) 


Hunter was 4 weeks old and gearing up to meet his Grandma & Grandpa (my wonderful mother & father-in-law) for the very first time. They were flying in from Ontario to finally meet their first grandchild; I can only imagine the anticipation they were feeling as they boarded that flight!


Not even 48 hours into the visit and it was like a switch went off with our super chilled out, cuddly, sleepy baby boy. All of a sudden, he was demanding my FULL, undivided attention. Twenty. Four. Hours. A. Day.  What could have possibly happened in such a short span of time? Two short days ago, he only needed me every couple of hours for some milk but was perfectly content in anyone else’s arms as he slept the days away, just living the sweet, sweet baby life. Just like that, he was needing his mama in a way that was entirely new (and exhausting) for both him and I. After two days of his intense nonstop, cluster-feeding, I felt SO emotionally and physically rundown; how much longer would this go on for? More importantly, what on EARTH was going on with our precious babe? My sisters, both of which are loving mommas themselves, casually said “oh, he’s going through his first Wonder Week.” Ummm…a what?! Within two minutes, I had ordered the book The Wonder Weeks written by two geniuses Frans X. Plooij and Hetty Van De Rij and spent many hours researching these glorious, horrifying mental leaps.


I won’t traumatize bore you with all the details of Hunter’s first Wonder Week but needless to say, I was very excited once those harsh five days were up. I did everything I could to survive these long days that felt like they were never going to end, things I swore I would never do. Co-Sleeping? While not ideal for our family, was the ONLY way I was getting through these long nights that basically just consisted of me laying down in bed, nursing our sweet one as we both nodded on & off in between those very short feeding breaks. Putting myself on the back burner? Becoming a mom, I always thought I would make the time for myself each day no matter what; even if that meant soaking in a hot bath for 10 minutes each night. I am actually laughing out loud as I write this for two reasons; one) I couldn’t have been more wrong & two) I mustered up the courage to do this once towards the end of Hunter’s Wonder Week and it went horribly wrong. I wound up frantically leaving an acupuncture appointment and full-on sprinting home to help console our poor little peanut who was totally out of sorts.


We have since survived 3 more Wonder Weeks, two of which honestly didn’t even phase us at all. Some are much harder than others and from talking with other moms out there, many go totally unnoticed!

One thing I do know, is that I wish I had been somewhat mentally prepared and knowledgeable on The Wonder Weeks rather than experiencing it & frantically trying to figure out what the hell was going on. I mean, I obviously knew growth spurts happened frequently but I guess I just didn’t really know what that really meant for me (& peanut!) It’s super scary as a first-time mom when all of a sudden your easy-going baby needs to be hanging off of you 24 hours a day, so much so that your husband literally has to spoon feed you in bed as you nurse & you have to brush your teeth while wearing your wee one on your chest!


Wonder Week. Two terrifying yet amazing little words that are completely necessary for our thriving wee ones. While very tough on us mamas, they are even tougher on our little babes. We are the only ones that can help our little loves get through these difficult and challenging leaps & growth spurts.

Patience, support, love, and gratitude for our little man are what got me through our two toughest Wonder Weeks. What got you through yours, mamas? Were you aware of these so called, Wonder Weeks? I hope you were better prepared than I was! I would love to hear your experiences!

For new mommy’s and mommy’s-to-be, I urge gently encourage you to order The Wonder Weeks book or better yet, download their app to get notifications on when a Wonder Week is coming your way. 

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As always, thank you so much for reading! xoxo

 

 

easy+healthy meal prep | yummy mummy bowl

This is the very first post in my easy + healthy meal prep series. I will be sharing some of our household go-to’s that are super delicious, healthy and best of all, EASY to make it large batches so you have leftovers for lunches and dinners.

I have ALWAYS loved being in the kitchen, ever since I was kid. Cooking and baking have been one of my favorite hobbies and a fun way to relieve stress and keep my mind (myself) busy. Before baby Hunter arrived, my husband and I spent about 6 weeks (usually one day a week) preparing healthy meals that we could store in the freezer so we didn’t have to worry about cooking in our early weeks as new parents. My mom was SO incredibly helpful during these weeks she stayed with us and ensuring we were well-fed however, once she left (I swear I’m not crying!) we wanted to be able to focus on our little family and not have ANY distractions from our new little bundle of joy. It was probably one of the best things we could have done for ourselves. We made tons of veggie packed soups + stews, gluten free lasagna (I’m celiac), zucchini muffins + some easy to snack on, nutrient packed little snacks.


Four and a half months into motherhood and the time I’m able to spend in the kitchen is still enjoyable but has definitely forced me to get much more creative (with HOW I cook & WHAT I cook!) There are nights when Hunter will just chill out in his baby chair or on his play mat while we cook & eat but other nights, I’m dicing vegetables and doing as much as I can while wearing him in his carrier. Needless to say, we like easy, healthy and YUMMY food in the Davis household!

One of my favorite things to do is to make a dinner that will be just as tasty the next day for lunches (sometimes even another dinner!) I wanted to share a recipe I recently created that is AMAZING for this!

Introducing the yummy mummy bowl…jam-packed full of protein, fiber + tons of nutrient dense ingredients:

2 cups of brown rice (quinoa works great, too! choose your favorite grain!)

4 cups of water

  1. Bring rice + water to a boil in saucepan before turning down to low for 35 minutes until rice is nice & fluffy. Once cooked to your liking, take off the burner, fluff with a fork, and let cool with lid on saucepan for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Prepare shredded or julienned raw carrots + purple beets, sliced cucumber
  3. Prepare a few handfuls of fresh, mixed baby greens
  4. Prepare garlic miso dressing; the creamy goodness that pulls this recipe together!

GARLIC MISO DRESSING

3 tablespoons white miso (also known as soybean paste; found in oriental aisle)

3 tablespoons rice vinegar (I like to use natural unseasoned)

3 tablespoons agave syrup (I’m sure honey would do!)

3 cloves of garlic (disclaimer: I looove garlic & have been known to overdo it, if you’re with me, do 3 cloves, if not, take it down a notch with 2 cloves)

1.5 tablespoons fresh ginger (peeled + thinly sliced)

1 teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice

3 tablespoon of water

1/2 cup of EVOO

*blend all ingredients in your blender/food processor until nice and smooth

5. Layer your bowl with your rice, then add a handful of fresh mixed greens, a layer of your fresh veggies & finally, drizzle this seriously delicious garlic miso dressing ALL OVER & ENJOY! I like to finish my bowl off with some sliced avocado!

NOTE: This makes about 8 servings and takes about 2 minutes to recreate for lunch and/or dinner the next day! Just be sure to prep extra veggies!

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Being a new mom, I never take a warm, yummy meal for granted as there are days when I honestly forget to even eat if my little guy is demanding my full, undivided attention. It is SO important to make sure we keep ourselves well-nourished, especially when you rely on your body for feeding and nourishing a little one. I know I’m not alone when I say there are nights I am sitting down for dinner and realizing this is my first meal of the day! This is why meal prep and lots of snacks are super important in our household.


Do you find meal prep helpful for your family? What are some go-to dishes you like to make sure you get yourself (& your family) well-fed? Are there days when you’re sitting down for dinner and realizing it’s basically the first thing you’ve eaten all day, too?!

As always, thank you for reading! I hope you + your family enjoy your yummy mummy bowls!

 

mama talk | fighting fatigue

Throughout most of my final trimester of pregnancy, I had the absolute most horrific insomnia. My days would often start at 3:00am (no joke) where I would usually find myself aggressively cleaning, baking or cooking up a storm while my husband slept like a baby (a saying I now use very loosely!) I remember thinking to myself during these painfully long days when I would still be working full-time, that I could not possibly be more exhausted than this. People would often say to me “rest while you can before the baby arrives!” This was something that drove me crazy, how was a more than slightly OCD, insomniac preggo suppose to relax and rest? These two words simply didn’t exist in my vocabulary of life, neither before my pregnancy and certainly not during.


Fast-forward a few weeks to when baby Hunter made his big, long-awaited debut into the world. I was surprised with how much more tired I could feel after all, I thought I had maxxed out on the fatigued-scale in those final weeks of my pregnancy. BUT, this type of fatigue I was feeling was different, it was something that I could cope with (as if I had a choice!) I was running completely on adrenaline, day in and day out (honestly, I still am) While my hormones were still raging, my heart was literally bursting at the seams with love and joy for this teeny tiny, precious baby boy.


There were many ways that helped me fight off this fatigue during pregnancy and in these early postnatal weeks + months while my body adjusted to waking up every 2-3 hours to feed my little one. For starters, I DRINK TONS OF WATER. If you’re not a huge water drinker, make your water FUN by adding fresh lemon, frozen raspberries and a few sprigs of rosemary! Or adding cucumber for a simple yet refreshing flavor boost. The possibilities are truly endless for making your water enjoyable, find what one you like best and start chugging that H20!


Diet is also a major one for me. We always eat clean, healthy, wholesome food in our household but when I would get those irresistible pregnancy cravings (hello Cherry Blasters, Reese’s & Mini Eggs!) I would notice a HUGE difference in how I felt, mentally and physically. Mostly because, I had zero not much control when those cravings hit, and boy they hit hard! (Who am I kidding, I still don’t)

Don’t forget though, we ALL deserve to indulge and treat ourselves! Don’t ever skip out on this. You’re allowed to eat a bowl of popcorn for dinner while enjoying a bottle nice glass of wine. I certainly won’t judge!


Then there is my savior, who is there for me day in and day out, every morning (& mid morning) without ever letting me down…COFFEE! If it’s been an exceptionally early morning for Hunter & I, we will head downtown and treat ourselves to a gourmet coffee at a local coffee shop. It’s a great way to treat myself and an even better excuse for an outing, which we all desperately need!


Keeping up with my physical activities is the biggest for me. During my pregnancy, I continued to go to the gym a few days a week while obviously modifying workouts so I wasn’t overworking my body or the lil’ bun. I also swapped out my regular yoga classes for prenatal classes. My midwife encouraged me to stick to my routine although, it was NOT easy! It took a lot of motivation and determination to continue with it but I honestly felt so much more energized and at ease when I put the effort in. Now that I have a baby, it still isn’t easy to muster up the energy but it truly works wonders on my overall health and mental well-being; two key things (for me) in managing motherhood!  There are SO many ways you can get a little physical activity in your day! You don’t need to be a member at a gym, or a yoga studio, you can just lace up your running shoes and hit the streets (or trails – one of our fav things to do!) with your stroller or wearing your babe! It’s AMAZING what a little fresh air + natural vitamin D can do (for both mama & baby!) You know your body better than anyone and what it is capable of, do what is best for YOU and YOUR body! Always listen to it, especially when it needs a break.

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Please lookout for an AMAZING mom & baby workout routine I am featuring on my blog VERY soon! 


BEST of all though for shaking that unmistakably foggy feeling of being a mom? Cuddling our sweet boy. Lots and lots of cuddling. This releases all those lovey dovey hormones that make me feel instantly calm and at peace, while making me forget all about the rough day or night we had (I wonder if Hunter will let me do this when he’s grown up?!) 


At the end of the day, we’re all tired. Whether you’re figuring out life with a new babe or have grown children. Embrace it, enjoy it & never take a day for granted. One thing I know for certain; it is TOTALLY worth it, every second of it.


Some of you may be surprised I didn’t mention “sleep while your baby sleeps.” I didn’t mention this for good reason; it’s near impossible for me. I just can’t do it! How would I EVER get anything done for myself or around the house if I slept while my little guy slept?! For me, that is just so far from a reality! If you can do this, I seriously envy you. Enjoy those naps, you absolutely deserve them!


Can any of you relate to my methods? What worked and didn’t work for you!? I want to hear YOUR secrets to fighting that ever so common mommy fatigue!

Thank you SO much for reading! It means so much to me!

baby talk | the early days

This past March, my husband and I welcomed our first ever bundle of joy, Hunter, who is now 4.5 months and I literally can’t believe how quickly the time has gone. Those first few weeks with our sweet little boy are a fuzzy blur of pure joy. Pure, exhausting joy. Looking back now, those first few weeks felt like they would go on forever, each day feeling like it would never end in my  sleep deprived state, each day being full of new little exciting firsts, my anxiety slowly decreasing as I gained more confidence in myself (and my dear husband) that we would not break this beautiful, tiny, helpless little human that we co-created. It is SO scary being totally responsible for a little 7.12oz bag of milk, isn’t it?! My lovely mother, who lives in Ontario (we live in BC) flew down a week before my due date and stuck around for the first three weeks of Hunter’s life and I will forever cherish these 4 weeks with her staying with us. I was so scared of everything, the umbilical cord…his first bath…not supporting his neck enough…literally everything. Between her and my husband, I feel like I was able to stay somewhat sane during those early weeks of recovering physically and mentally from giving birth and becoming a mama. My definition of “somewhat sane” is likely much different than yours. As I sit here, both laughing and crying writing this, I realize how much of a nut I was at times. Navigating my way through motherhood was and always will be a constant journey; a journey that I will never take for granted.


During my pregnancy (my long, sometimes beautiful, sometimes rough, insomnia filled pregnancy) I did so much research, like every mama-to-be. I read all the books, did all the online research, we showed up to each and every midwife appointment with an actual LIST of questions/concerns to discuss, not one of these resources talked about how truly CHALLENGING somethings would be. How come no one told me that nursing would be my biggest hurtle in the early days? In fact, I was told “it’s just natural, it comes easy for you and the baby.” Umm…really? Maybe I’m a one-off, but I personally did not find this “easy”. I found this hard and painful in my early days! My patience, dedication and strong willingness to breastfeed my babe got me through it. Just when I thought this baby making body of mine couldn’t amaze me anymore, the fact that I could grow and nourish my little babe solely with my body, was pretty friggin’ beautiful and amazing. With that being said, I realize it is near impossible for some new mamas out there, and that is completely OKAY. Being a mom, you have to do what is best for YOU (& your body) AND YOUR BABY, no matter what society tells you is “right” or “wrong.” Each mama is different, each baby is different, more than ever before, you need to do you and not worry about what other people think and say. Easier said than done, I know! I never knew how strong my motherly instincts could be until our little bundle of joy arrived, follow them and trust them, mamas!


What was your biggest challenge in the early days? Please share with me!

Thanks for reading!