Disclosure: All reviews are my true and honest opinions. Posts may contain affiliate links where I earn a small commission from your purchase, but I will always let you know which links those are. :)

Saturday, December 30, 2017

26 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Dec. 26, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Doctor Appointment:
Calvin was not having it at the doctor appointment this week, so it wasn't a long, enjoyable ultrasound. Cervix measured 3.9 which is still super. :) Didn't get a weight measurement, which was disappointing.

I was watching and reading my updates with Calvin and around this time he was already up in my rib cage. Every once in awhile I feel Eren up there like if I'm bent over and squishing the belly, but overall, I think he stays pretty low, so I'm grateful for that so far.

Been trying to do more yoga and stretching for my hips and back, I can't decide if it is helping yet or not though.

Physical Symptoms:
Headaches seem to be returning. They're not super terrible, but just a little annoyance.
Feet swelling is beginning. They don't look super puffy just yet, but by the end of the day you can definitely tell there's some swelling going on.

Week of Christmas. Didn't eat the best.

Sleep & Dreams:
Restless nights, hard to get comfy, hard to fall asleep.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Christmas was this week. This year was much more exciting with Calvin than last year. He was just too little to understand last year so it was cool to see him get excited about opening gifts.

Random Thoughts:
Less than 100 days until Eren is due!!!

Alaina & Baby Brother Eren

Saturday, December 23, 2017

25 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Dec. 19, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Calvin distinguishes between me and brother in my belly. He will pat my belly and say "bubber" then pat my leg or my chest and say "mom." He even came over to give brother some chips. He placed them on my belly, waited a moment, then ate them himself lol.

Took an extra walk this week, so I felt a little productive exercise-wise. Even when I wear my support belt, walks can really bother my hip and low back. I know that movement helps, but perhaps walks aren't the answer. Maybe some stretching and yoga are the better way to get my exercise in.

Physical Symptoms:
Zits everywhere. Dude wtf?! Looking back at my 26 weeks update with Calvin, I had some bad zit face going on then too, so I guess we've just reached that point in pregnancy. Haha.
Hip and back ache, blah blah blah.
Restless legs.

Baked cookies.
Baked some poppy seed bread at home. The recipe makes two loaves...
Mom baked a big cinnamon roll and brought it in to work.
Went out to dinner and the movies with Justin.
Just all over, too much unhealthy food and snacking this week!

Sleep & Dreams:
Acid Reflux kept me up in the night once this week.
Keep getting what feels like the start of a calf cramp but it never fully turns into a cramp, especially in the the night.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Went on a date night with Justin to see the new Star Wars in theaters. We saw the last one when I was pregnant with Calvin. Sitting in the theater was legit super uncomfortable, and it's one of those cool theaters with the recliners. I could not get comfy, it sucked. But the movie was good lol.

Random Thoughts:
I hope I'm not jinxing myself here, but I feel like I was way more emotional when I was pregnant with Calvin. Like little comments would set me off. But they don't seem to bother me much this time around. 
Also this week it totally feels like pregnancy is too long! It feels like I've been pregnant forever and why isn't Eren here yet?! I don't remember it feeling this long with Calvin and I spent five weeks in the hospital waiting on him! I just can't wait to meet him and I want to see him sooo bad! :)

Alaina & Baby Brother Eren

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Green Mountain Diapers Review & Comparison : Muslin vs. Birdseye Flat Diapers

We have recently switched to using flats much more often. My husband still enjoys our snap-in inserts, but for the most part, flats are our go-to since Mr. Calvin has turned from an average wetter to some kind of super pee-er.

Birdseye (left) Muslin (right)

Flats are awesome for your wallet. They are affordable individually, plus they dry super fast so you don't need a large stash in order to get through laundry day. Plus they can hang dry overnight, saving you money not using the dryer. Flats are just super and I say it all the time, but I totally should have just started out with them in the very beginning!

Birdseye (left) are much more trim than the Muslin (right).

When I was first looking into flats, I would have loved to see a review and comparison between these two. I know everyone loves Green Mountain Diapers, they are THE go-to, so I knew they were the brand I wanted to try first. I originally purchased the Birdseye flats because they were cheaper and they were my first flat diaper purchase, so I didn't even know if I was going to enjoy using flats. Once I learned to love these versatile diapers, I had to go back and pick up the ever-praised Muslins.

Birdseye Diapers 6 pack Organic One Size $15.95, 29x29 inches
These are trim. I'd say they would totally work from birth to potty.

Muslin Diapers 6 pack Organic One Size $19.95, 28x30 inches
Because these are so fluffy and plush, I think they would be pretty bulky on a newborn. They're pretty thick for pad-folding on my 29 pound toddler.

They stay square!
Muslin underneath, Birdseye on top. (Muslin may be ever so slightly larger)

Both stay very square after washing and drying, which makes folding much easier.

I put them to the absorbency test by pad folding and laying them both on the counter. I then added water concentrated in one spot (like a real diaper being peed in) and poured until I saw water starting to leak or pool from the fabric onto the counter.
The muslin diaper held 1 cup of water.
The birdseye weave held 3/4 of a cup.

I would recommend them both. More specifically, if you're starting out with a newborn, I'd say go with the Birdseye. And if you have an older baby, try the Muslin. And if you have a heavy wetter, perhaps skip the birdseye.

Thanks so much for reading.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Imagine vs. Nicki's Bamboo Flat Diapers Review & Comparison

$25.95 6 pack
32x32 inches
55% bamboo, 45% cotton

Nicki's Diapers
$21.95 6 pack
32x32 inches
55% bamboo, 45% cotton

Imagine might be ever so slightly larger

Judging by the stats listed above, you may be saying, "holy crap these are the same thing but one costs more than the other." That's what I thought at first too. Having heard awesome things about bamboo flats, I started out with the Nicki's brand first because they were cheaper. I loved them so much that when the Black Friday sale came around and the Imagine were the same price as Nicki's, I figured I'd give them a go and see if they were really worth the extra $0.67/ea.

Why bamboo?

First of all, bamboo flats are soft. If you line dry and are always finding your cotton flats to be a little stiff, I would totally recommend checking out bamboo flats. They feel so good! Straight off the line, they are soft, but out of the dryer they feel luxurious.

And they hold so much pee. I don't think I have ever taken one off my son that was over halfway saturated. Most of the time they don't even feel 1/3 of the way saturated after our usual every two hour diaper changes.

How do they compare?

After testing them out for a few weeks, I have come to the conclusion that the Imagine could actually be worth the extra money. And honestly, I was very much anticipating finding no difference between the two.

The Imagine do feel softer than the Nicki's brand. I will have a pile of flats ready to fold, fresh from the dryer, picking them out one at a time, and I can always tell when I've just grabbed the Imagine brand, they just feel extra soft and dreamy.

Neither stay perfectly square, but I think that's just the nature of the bamboo.

As far as absorbency is concerned, I put them to the test by pad folding them, laying them on the counter, and pouring some water on them to see which could hold more. I concentrated the water pouring in one spot, trying to mimic an actual diaper in use and measured it once I saw the first sign of leaking or water spreading onto the counter from the fabric.
Results: the Imagine held ever so slightly more water than the Nicki's brand diaper!
1 1/4 cup for Imagine.
1 1/8 cup for Nicki's.

So overall, Imagine actually does have its perks. It's not simply an overpriced version of the same Nicki's Diaper bamboo flats, like I was honestly expecting. Perhaps one will last longer than the other in the long run. With baby brother Eren arriving this spring, I will keep an eye on it. :)

both birdseye weave

I hope you enjoyed and I really hope this helped someone trying to decide between the two!

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Flower Beauty Reviews : Lipstick, Blush, Foundation, Brows

I picked up a few new items from Flower Beauty recently. Some of these are old favorites and some are brand new products that I've been dying to try! Enjoy. 

Miracle Matte Liquid Lip Color
Cooling effect
Whipped texture
Super lightweight
Long-wearing without looking dry and yucky
No feathering 
Transfer resistant - I wouldn't call them totally transfer-proof because I do get a slight residue on my water bottle, for example
Yet easy to remove - the bold shade does leave a bit of a stain, but overall they aren't a big pain to remove like other liquid lipsticks where you need to pull out an oil to get that color off

Melon Pop, direct window light

Overall, they are awesome, affordable liquid lipsticks. I just wish they had more colors, especially bright, unique shades, maybe some purples? I also feel like their online shades aren't super true to color, I definitely had to look up a swatch video on YouTube in order to figure out which ones I wanted to try.

Rosewood, indoor office lighting

The shade is a little red-brown for my liking. I prefer a cool toned brown. Opaque, can totally work all on its own. It doesn't really have any hold though, it's pretty much just color. The wand is a little large. 
Probably won't repurchase this one. I really like the NYX Tinted Brow Mascara in Espresso. 

I have enjoyed these liners in the past and this color in particular is my very favorite natural, deeper, "my lips but better" kind of lip color. However, I feel like these newer liners are more creamy than the formula I first tried from Flower. I actually preferred the older, dry ones. Although the new one glides on the lips like butter, it doesn't help things stay put, which is kind of an important part of a lip liner. Still a pretty color but I swear the formula is different. 

About Face Foundation
I love this as an everyday foundation. It's light coverage and doesn't look intense or cakey. It's very comfortable and doesn't get oily or heavy throughout the day, even with my super oily pregnancy skin. It's just overall a really nice foundation and I'll continue repurchasing it.
The only downside is that it can be frustrating to use with a sponge. Sponges are my favorite method of foundation application, but because this is already such a light formula, it seems to get soaked up into the sponge a lot and it feels like you're wasting product, you end up using a lot more than if you were to apply with your fingers.

Petal Pout Lip Color
I picked up the lightest of the matte shades, Naked Blush. I love a matte lipstick. This is creamy, pigmented, and feels super comfy on the lips. The lid is clear plastic and gave me the first impression that it would be cheapy, but it's actually pretty sturdy and feels a lot nicer than it looks, if that makes sense. And the formula totally makes up for any bad first impressions based on packaging.

Flower Pots Powder Blush
I've been eyeing these blushes for awhile. I mean just look at it, it's adorable! I picked up Warm Hibiscus, a rosey blush with a sheen. Which is totally not what I normally go for. I am usually all about matte blush, I don't want anything to make my skin look oilier than it truly is. But holy crap, I am sooo glad I chose this one. It is so gorgeous.

You don't need to wear any highlighter to get the most perfect sunkissed glow with this baby. It's just beautiful on the skin, I love it. 

I hope you enjoyed this informal review of some new stuff from Flower Beauty. I'm so glad I was able to pick up a few items because it feels like I haven't bought makeup in forever! #momlife 

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, December 17, 2017

24 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Dec. 12, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Doctor Appointments:
I was totally was not looking forward to seeing how big my bump is measuring, but I met with the midwife, not the doctor and she's much more relaxed so she didn't make a big deal out of it. She did say I was measuring big, but I didn't bother to ask how big. It feels like Eren could be up into my rib cage in the next week or so. I don't remember that this early with Cal!
I had a MFM appointment and my regular OB right afterwards. Justin was able to stay home with Calvin so I didn't have to worry about dragging him along, which was nice. I got to enjoy the ultrasound time.
Cervix is measuring at 3.8 cm, which is awesome. Eren is estimated to weigh 1 lb, 7 oz now, which is ahead, but not unexpected because he's been about a week ahead the whole time, plus Calvin was a big baby. The midwife says Eren will probably be over 8 pounds too, but that's no surprise.
Got some cute profile shots of little Eren and my sister is convinced he has our nose, so he's going to look like me, not Justin. Calvin is totally a Justin twin baby, so of course I'd be happy to see what a little me baby would look like. Lol.
I heard Eren's heartbeat at the MFM ultrasound and recognized it as about the same tempo that Calvin's was at. I spent weeks 32-37 in the hospital with Calvin listening to his heart rate being monitored twice daily, so the 138-143 bpm range sounded super familiar to me. It was cool to recognize it and remember listening to Calvin like that many, many times.

Ordered a support belt. It can be irritating to wear constantly all day, but I do think it's helpful. It definitely helped on a walk.
Otherwise, the belly doesn't really look that giant, I guess, but it sure feels huge. 

Chasing around a toddler is hard work man. Plus my hip and back hurt a lot lately, so chasing a toddler when you feel like an old lady is super hard.

Physical Symptoms:
My left hip hurts pretty much every day and it sucks. Why do I feel so achey already? And it's not only in the evenings, it can be achey in the middle of the night when I get up to pee and first thing in morning when I roll out of bed. It's sucky. I was actually reading back through my updates with Calvin and I was feeling achey at this point last time too, which surprised me to read.
I've had my first leg cramp the last day of this week. I was stretching in bed in the night and it was just a split second but it reminded me of how sucky those leg cramps are! Haha. I thought I was going to get away without having them this time.
I've had a couple zits this week on my chin, which is pretty unusual for me.

I haven't been as good as I have been in the past. Instead of coming in with 100-200 calories left each day, I've been using up every little bit and sometimes going 50-100 calories over. Not a good habit to get into, especially since we're still in the third trimester here.
As I've experienced pretty much this entire pregnancy, there are just some days when what we have planned for dinner totally does not appeal to me and we have to switch things up. I might have looked forward to this meal for a couple days but when the moment actually comes, I don't want anything to do with it. Haha. Crazy hormones.
Justin and I stocked up on some ice cream we both like. Lately, we have been going out to get ice cream maybe once or twice a week, but at least this way we will be spending our money a little better by eating at home. I love cookie dough ice cream with Hershey's chocolate syrup. I even added some crushed up Keebler Striped Fudge cookies. Yummy!

Sleep & Dreams:
Sleeping on my side is getting easier. This belly is just getting so big.
Had some super weird dreams this week but can't seem to remember them all. I feel like it's been awhile since I've had some weird ones.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Seeing Eren on ultrasound and chatting with my sister about how he might possibly look like us instead of another Justin clone. I'll probably have my hopes up this entire time that he's going to look like me, then when he's born, he's totally still going to look like Justin and Calvin lol.
I actually told Justin this past weekend that I thought Calvin was looking to have a little more of me in him as he's grown up. I think he has my chin. I always joke with Justin that we're going to have the best looking kids in town. We live in a pretty small town, but that does not detract from my statement! Haha.

Random Thoughts:
Been wearing more makeup this week. I got a few new products and have been excited to try them out each day. It's nice to get back into that sometimes. We've been really good at budgeting and not spending money on random stuff this year, but it's nice to just treat yourself sometimes. 
I looked back on my 4 weeks pregnant post and remembered how bad I felt in the beginning for removing Calvin from his only child position. I felt so guilty, like I was ruining his whole world. But I am so glad I don't feel that way anymore. I cannot wait to see these brothers interact. I hope they grow up to be just as close as me and my sister are. I hope they learn to forgive each other and always have each others' backs and are the best of friends. I am so happy they are both of the same sex and they get to be so close in age. I really just can't wait to see them grow together. 

Alaina & Baby Brother Eren

Sunday, December 10, 2017

23 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Dec. 5, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018
that boy looks too grown up here! 

How big is this bump going to be in a month, or in four months for that matter?! I feel like it's already absolutely huge.
Also, why does it feel like Eren is trying to tear out my cervix? 

Calvin's been sick, got everyone else sick too, so energy has been crappy all around.

Physical Symptoms:
My hips/low back hurt pretty much every evening.
Some shirts feel like they are so tight they are suffocating the bump!
Restless legs for a couple weeks now in the evenings mostly. It's not super terrible yet, but definitely there.

No big cravings. Watching myself and counting calories, making up for the terrible Thanksgiving week, but it doesn't seem to be helping because I'm up another two pounds this week. That brings us to a total of 23 pounds in 23 weeks. Now if I could end up at a total of 40 pounds for 40 weeks in the end, that would be totally cool, but I know from my first pregnancy, at some point here soon, I'm bound to start gaining a steady two pounds per week and that's not going to lead me to only 40 pounds at this point! I guess all I can say is I tried. :)

Sleep & Dreams:
Learning to sleep on my side better. I did it with Calvin, I can do it again.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
I know it isn't pregnancy related, but this made me super happy. Calvin went poo on the potty! He came over to me, said "poo poo," so I put him on the potty and he went! Ah! Pretty exciting.

Random Thoughts:
These updates seem to be getting shorter each week lol. 
I can't wait to see Justin and our two little boys together. 
I can't wait to see what Eren looks like. I keep envisioning him looking totally different from Calvin.

Alaina & Baby Brother Eren

Sunday, December 3, 2017

22 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Nov. 28, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

MFM Doctor Appointment:
Calvin came along this time, and although he did super awesome at the last ultrasound, he was not having it this time around. Therefore, the ultrasound tech worked as quick as she could and we didn't get to just stare at baby brother and marvel in his cuteness like we sometimes do. Haha. Since Calvin wasn't having a good time, I totally forgot to ask how my cervix was measuring, but I did get a glimpse at the screen as she was taking the measurement and it looked to be over 3.5 cm, which is good. Everything else seemed to check out fine.

Should I get a support belt?
Should I buy more pants?
Why are these pants already driving me insane?
But in other news, Eren feels like he's already newborn size. He is so strong. There are times he kicks where it literally scares me because he's only supposed to be this tiny little one pound baby and yet he can really pack a punch. It seems as if he went from just fluttering around in there to trying to claw his way out in a matter of days. Some days it totally feels like he's trying to dig through my cervix. I remember Calvin would always be up in my rib cage with his little feet and I thought that was bad, but holy crap, stabbing my cervix is way worse. Haha. 

Calvin tires me out man. But I will say, it's great motivation to try and not gain a million pounds. I can't imagine what chasing two of these boys is going to be like!

Physical Symptoms:
Hips ache, back hurts some days, heartburn, all the fun pregnancy stuff.

This was Thanksgiving week. Let's just say the whole counting calories thing was totally thrown out the window and the scale showed it!

Sleep & Dreams:
Weird dreams are still occurring.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Calvin had so much fun at his great grandpa's in the country this Thanksgiving. He loves it down there. Being outdoors is the best thing for that kid. He hadn't napped all day but was still a joyous little boy. If we had been couped up inside under those circumstances, there would definitely have been a meltdown.
Calvin woke up early on Tuesday this week, so we laid in bed together for a couple minutes. It's the only time this guy will cuddle with me, when he's super tired. He is usually constantly on the go. It was nice to just lay with him, knowing we won't have many moments just the two of us like that in a few months time.

Random Thoughts:
Seriously, how am I going to be able to keep up with two crazy little boys?!

Alaina & Baby Brother Eren