Friday, September 25, 2020

Day-Weaning Olivia

    My sweet Livie-Lou has been a boobie girl since FOREVER. Right when she was born and they placed her on my chest, she did the breast crawl and latched perfectly all by herself. She has never refused the breast. EVER. She always wants to nurse and I have always obliged her. I researched breastfeeding and became a pro while I was pregnant and I was determined to make it work for us and nurse her until she was at least a year old, though the AAP recommends nursing until 2 years old. But, let me tell you... nursing an 18 month old on demand is DIFFICULT. This isn't a tiny little swaddled baby we're talking about, anymore. This is a spirited, rambunctious, heavy toddler who wants to nurse and nurse often. Sometimes, she nurses up to 12 times a day! And it's always right when I'm about to do something important that requires my full attention. She wants to nurse in the middle of Target or right as we sit down for dinner with friends at a restaurant, and frankly, it's started to become quite inconvenient. As much as it pained me to think about weaning her, I could feel myself getting frustrated with her about wanting to nurse all the time, and I have been feeling like it was time for a change.

    Last week I was listening to an episode of "Unruffled" with Janet Lansbury (this podcast is an AMAZING resource for parents who follow the RIE parenting method), and a work-at-home mother was talking about how she had grown apathetic about nursing her 20 month old and she felt like her daughter was picking up on it. Janet mentioned how that wasn't really fair to the child, that something so special and bonding was becoming a point of contention, and she encouraged the mother to set boundaries with breastfeeding, that way the daughter would learn when she could expect a nursing session and wouldn't be asking all the time. Also, breastfeeding wouldn't feel like a burden to the mother, anymore, and nursing would be a sweet time of connection for the both of them, again. It was in that moment that I decided to set some limits with Olivia regarding breastfeeding.

    I wanted nursing to feel special again. I never wanted my baby girl to feel like she's an inconvenience to me. I could also tell that she was picking up on my negative attitude toward her as I grew impatient waiting for her to be finished, so I could move on to whatever important thing needed to be done. So, I decided to day-wean Olivia and reserve breastfeeding for first thing in the morning and before bed times (nap time around 2pm and bedtime around 9pm). I knew I needed to do it for my own mental health, and to preserve the beauty of Olivia's and my breastfeeding relationship. Like I said, Olivia LOVES her "boobie". She will demand it and throw a fit if she doesn't get it. She will try and pull my shirt, stick her hands down my bra and occasionally try to hit me if I don't give it up fast enough. So, needless to say, I was pretty anxious about starting this process. I knew there would be a lot of drama, and I knew I would be having to upset her and endure lots of crying and sadness, but it was easier than I thought! 

    I started the process on Tuesday after she woke up from her nap. Every time she would ask to nurse, I would say "No, baby. We only nurse before you sleep now. You can have boobie before bedtime.". Inevitably, she would throw herself on the floor and cry. I would respond by validating her feelings and offering hugs. "I know, honey. You're really upset because you love nursing and you wanted to nurse right now! But I promise I'll nurse you before bed." Often, she did NOT want my hugs, and the crying would last about a minute and then I could distract her. She asked for it a lot that first day, but the drama subsided as the night went on. And when I climbed in bed and told her it was finally time to nurse, she squealed, did a little dance and said "(Ex)cited! (Ex)cited!". It was so precious and I was refreshed from having my body to myself and I could give her my undivided attention during that special time together. 

    On wednesday, she only asked to nurse a handful of times, and get this, when I told her "not right now. We only nurse at bed times, now, remember?", there were NO TEARS. At all! In fact, I think she only whined a tiiiiny little bit, that first time. And when I put her to bed that night, she actually unlatched, rolled over and let me cuddle her until she fell asleep, instead of falling asleep WHILE nursing. 

    Now, it's Thursday and she only asked to nurse twice, today! And there were no tears and no whining at all. She actually was being silly with me tonight, and saying "num num num" while leaning toward my chest and giving me a cheeky, knowing smile. Until yesterday, the only time she asked me to hold her, she would immediately follow it up with asking to nurse, so I could never really just cuddle her and hug her on my lap, but let me tell you... these cuddles I've been getting, y'all! They're priceless! I couldn't even have told you when the last time was that I just snuggled her and she laid her head on my chest. Somehow, I feel like day-weaning her has STRENGTHENED our bond with one another. It's like, we're nursing less, but we're connecting more and in different ways. My attitude is better when it's time to nurse. I can settle in and snuggle her and savor the time we are spending nestled into each other, because I've had my body to myself for a while. It's so bittersweet, though. I'm realizing that nursing Olivia is the only thing that is really keeping her a baby in my mind. She is so smart and growing so fast. I know that someday very soon, she won't need me as much, anymore, and she will go to sleep without having to nurse. So I'm soaking in this special time with her. I'll keep you updated on how it's going as time progresses. Hug your littles close, mamas! 



Tuesday, September 22, 2020

My 4 Favorite Lip Colors for Fall

I was chatting with one of my instagram engagement pod girls the other day and she described herself as a "very seasonal person". And let me tell you, GIRL, SAME. As soon as the weather starts changing and I can feel fall in the air, I get giddy with excitement and anxious for change. Like, I am going ALL OUT. Let's go get a PSL and hit up the fall candle sale at B&BW. Then, we'll light our candles, bust out the fall decor, turn on Hocus Pocus and pin Halloween costume ideas. 😂 You think I'm kidding, but I'm not!

One of my favorite things to change with the seasons is my makeup and jewelry. Because it is SO dang hot in Texas (even in the fall, unfortunately) you can't exactly bust out the riding boots and chunky sweaters, so makeup is a great way to bring in the fall feeling. Nothing is more classic fall to me than a gold or bronze eyeshadow with pretty plum or burgundy lips. So, I've compiled the 4 lipsticks that I can NOT get enough of this season. All of these are linked in my, which you can shop HERE.

L'Oreal Paris Colour Riche Original Satin - Saucy Mauve

This is the most beautiful purple-y mauve. It's almost a nude but with gorgeous purple hues. The formula is smooth, buttery and moisturizing. 

Milani Lipstick Color Statement- Matte Naked

Milani makeup is so inexpensive and really amazing from the price standpoint. I have so many of their lipsticks and this one is a fave. It looks best on lighter skin tones and is a lovely matte nude.

Anastasia Liquid Lipstick- Heathers

Anastasia products speak for themselves. This matte liquid lipstick ain't coming off. It laughs at your makeup remover wipes, so you know it'll stay put when you wear your mask. It definitely gets darker as it dries, so it's more brown in person than it looks in this pic. Definitely a dramatic shade.

NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream- Prague

Who are we kidding. NYX Prague is my go-to for every season. If I'm wearing lipstick, it's probably prague. It's a gorgeous deep pink that looks good on basically everyone. It's fool-proof and the formula is amazing. It's matte but doesn't dry out your lips or make them sticky like some matte formulas do. And it's very affordable! I counted and I have 3 tubes of it!

There you have it! My 4 fave lip colors for the season. But here's the thing. Hopefully you are wearing your mask when you're out and about, so it's not like anyone but your close, socially distant friends and immediate family will see how beautiful you look in these lipsticks. It can be your little secret. You look GORG under that mask. <3 Let that be a confidence booster for you and #wearyourdamnmask.