Smoothie Hack!

Smoothie Hack!

The weather has finally started to warm up here in the PNW so I thought I’d do a post on a fun little smoothie hack (Obviously, smoothies are my life). I’m probably not the first to think of this, but it’s still pretty cool!

So first of all, I bought a big thing of bananas, kiwis, and strawberries. I sliced them all up, laid them out on a  cookie sheet and stuck them in the freezer for a few hours (I left them in there for about two hours). They weren’t super frozen, but just enough that they weren’t smooshy. Next, I divided all my fruit into muffin tins!

IMG_0811I just layered everything in the tins (I love chia seeds so I added a half a tablespoon to each tin), topping off with my almond milk last before throwing them in the freezer overnight! You could use any liquid you want, I just prefer almond milk in my smoothies.

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In the morning they were nice and solid.

IMG_0812I used a spoon to pop them out, setting a few aside to make a smoothie and put the rest in a big freezer bag to use for another day.

To use for your smoothie, just drop two disks into your blender with about a half a cup of your preferred liquid and blend! This makes about 12oz.

 

I hope you enjoyed this post!

-Shayna

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Postnatal Must Haves!

Postnatal Must Haves!

I know I’ve been talking a lot about my c-section lately, but I just wanted to do a short post and share some tips that really helped me through the first few weeks after having my little one!

**I’m not affiliated with any of the products mentioned below, I just love them and they made my new life a little easier**

First and foremost: Water. Water is to me what coconut oil is to most women. Especially if you’re breastfeeding! I shouldn’t have to tell you why water’s good for you, it just is.

Nipple cream! (If you’re breastfeeding) I used Earth Mama Angel Baby Natural Nipple Butter. It went on a lot easier and didn’t leave that weird sticky feeling that Lanolin leaves behind, not to mention the Natural Nipple Butter’s main ingredient is olive oil whereas Lanolin is a wax secreted by the sebaceous glands of wool-bearing animals (seriously, google it). I don’t know, that just feels weird to me.

The Boppy! When I was pregnant I really didn’t buy the hype about the Boppy. Like, why couldn’t I just hold my baby the entire time I nursed him? Oh naïve Shayna, who didn’t know about cluster feeding or that I was going to end up having a c-section so using any of my abdominal muscles to hold him up while feeding was going to hurt. I’m two months postpartum now, so I don’t use it as religiously as I did when I first had my son, but now he’s big enough to lounge in it, or if I use it when I need to get some writing or eating, done and he wants to nurse.

Postpartum belt. It helps when your uterus is trying to shrink back down to its normal size, and you’ve had a c-section it helps hold your posture and take some of the pressure from your incision.

This is the one I got. even though the first handful of days home I ended up using my grandma’s back brace because my belt was a tad too small, I still wore it a lot the weeks following. It was a little difficult to get it smooth, and it made a crunchy noise from the velcro when I moved, it still did a pretty good job for the price.

Freezer meals or a food train. About a month before I had my son, I made my mom come over and we made about two weeks of mostly crock pot meals or meals that could easily be dropped in a pot on the stove for a few minutes. You’re going to be tired, cranky, dirty, and hungry so having a nice easy meal that’s really filling helps a lot.

Your favorite lotion. This one is just a nice indulgence! Whether you’re still at the hospital and feel gross, or you’re home and have had a stressful and sleepless night and have a loving husband that will use it when he rubs your feet/legs, it’s important to treat yourself!

(If you’re breastfeeding) Good, comfy, nursing bras and lots of nursing pads! I have a few of these sports bras from Cake that are my go to every day, but a stretchy shelf bra can be useful too (especially for sleeping!). I love these Lanolash nursing pads for sleeping because they have a sticky back and don’t move around all night, and these Evenflo ones are comfy for day time! Or you can make your own, which can be time-consuming if you don’t have a sewing machine and have a little one attached to you. (I’m currently making my own, this is where I found the instructions)

Granola bars with peanut butter. Perfect snack for late night feedings, or if your babe just won’t let you put them down. Really anything with lots of fiber and protein helped me.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this post!

-Shayna

My Birth Story. Part Two: My Cesarean and Recovery

My Birth Story. Part Two: My Cesarean and Recovery

I left off in my last post explaining why I ended up going for a scheduled c-section, now it’s time to gab about everything that came along with that!

Honestly, I think I went through some grieving over the fact I was having that moment, and my ideal birth, taken away. I knew what I was doing was the mature, responsible thing, but I still mourned the loss of what could have been.

The doctor told me that IF my baby turned before the surgery date, then they would just cancel and I could continue with my homebirth. I had updated most of my family and friends on this drastic change of plans, and they all gave me advice on how to turn him, saying that they were praying for him to turn and that they just had a feeling he’ll turn. It was all sweet, and I knew they meant well, but deep down I knew he wasn’t going to turn.

I could feel the amount of space there was in my womb for him to move and I could even feel him trying to wiggle his way around so he could face down, but he was vacuum sealed in that position. I told this to a lot of people, and they acted like I was taking the easy way out, stressing too much, or they would just outright tell me I was wrong and that my baby was going to turn. It was kind of insulting being told that, apparently, people that aren’t me know my body better than I do.

By the time the day had arrived, I’d pushed my feelings aside and was just focusing on how excited I was that I was going to meet my little one.

Soon as my husband and I arrived at the hospital, they checked me in and hooked me up to my IV right away. I remember joking with the nurse about how I always hate IVs because I feel like I can’t move because I was always worried I’d pull it out and how I hated when the fluid got pushed through my veins because it tickled. The nurse made a weird noise and said, “Well, I don’t have the IV in yet…”

I whipped my head around to look at my arm (I was looking as far away from the needle as I could, because I’m a giant chicken), just to find that the nurse had attempted to draw blood and I guess she didn’t have the tube attached right because my vein was spraying blood all over the nurses chest and on the right side of the hospital bed. Not a great way to start. Don’t get me wrong, the nurses and doctors were great, but that wasn’t a positive start to my day.

I had arrived two hours early to my surgery so I could be properly prepped, but man did those two hours fly by. Nurses, doctors, and one anesthesiologist made their way into my room to properly introduce themselves and explain what’s going to happen and how long it will take. Before I knew it I was walking down the hall to my operating room.

For legal purposes (at least I think that’s what they told me) my husband had to wait in another room while they gave me my spinal. I’d spent months planning a un-medicated birth, and I’d never been a big fan of needles, so having someone with a huge needle pointed at my spine while they told me to relax was a kind of nerve-racking experience. Oddly enough, the shot was what hurt the most. It burned and took my breath away; the nurse I was leaning on rubbed my arms and told me it was normal.

After they laid me down and my nerves were dead from about my chest to my toes, they brought my husband in. Now, I’ve been told by other moms that even though you’re numbed up, you can still feel some slight pushing and tugging; the nurses warned me before hand too. It’s honestly a really weird feeling, knowing that on the other side of the curtain your belly’s cut open with people’s hands digging around inside.  The whole surgery took about an hour, but they got my little one out in about nineteen minutes, which would have been sooner but he was really cuddled up next to my rib cage.

From what I’ve heard, normally c-sections can hurt or delay the bonding between mom and baby, but luckily the hospital I was at was all about the skin to skin and breastfeeding, so I felt pretty blessed knowing we were all on the same page. As soon as they pulled him out, they plopped him on my chest on the other side of the curtain and let us get a good long look at him through the little window on the curtain, even take video! My doctor was kind enough to delay cord clamping and even left the cord a little long so my husband could cut it. Once they had him weighed and measured, they brought him back to me, so the rest of the surgery he sat snuggled against my chest.

                                                            Recovery.

I stayed three days in the hospital, which is about average. My incision healed up really fast, but I was still in a lot of pain and having some trouble getting my little one to latch properly or else I would have only spent two days there.

The pain was like nothing I’ve ever felt before. It was a sharp burning that would happen whenever I turned or tried to stand up. I have a pretty high pain tolerance, it takes a lot to make me cry, but just reaching my hand out to try to see my baby hurt. It makes total sense though, I just gave birth an eight pound human, lost blood, fluids, and everything else that comes with growing a small person on top of having major surgery. I remember the nurse having to talk me into taking a shower because walking those five feet to the bathroom felt like someone was ripping the skin off of my waist. But I gave in and took a shower, bent over in half and in a crouched position because I was afraid if I fully extended myself I would have started crying in pain again. Unfortunately, when the water ran down my incision, it felt like fire and I ended up crying anyway.

By the time I got home though, I was pretty mobile and more energetic. I had gone from serious pain killers, to maybe an ibuprofen every couple of hours. I had my mom stay with me for a few days, to help me at night. I couldn’t lift my baby, or bend over to set him down, it was really frustrating. The first week of my son’s life I couldn’t go and cradle him when he cried, I had to find someone to do it for me or else I’d be in a whole bunch of pain, or risk hurting myself. I think that along with my hormones trying to figure themselves out put a slight hindrance on bonding with my son. But I’m no quitter! I nursed and did skin to skin contact every second I could. I’m so thankful to not have gone through postpartum depression because I know a lot of women have, and I feel deeply for them because I cannot imagine how hard that must be to have a new baby and not feel close or even want to feel close enough.

I did, however, have a touch of the baby blues about a week after having him, which is completely normal, that lasted about two days. So I spent those days curled up in bed with my baby, everything making me cry, but after venting to my husband and my mom I came out of it and haven’t had a real bad day since!

Thank you for reading! I know how much it helped me to read other women’s experiences when I was pregnant, so if you have any questions or would like to share your own story, I’d love to read them and talk to you!

-Shayna