Making Your Pregnancy Even More Special!™

This article originally appeared on HuffPost

Back-to-school time is back. If you have a newborn and also have children attending school, it’s a lot for everyone in the household to deal with. Over the summer, you probably had more time to give everyone what they needed. Now, the days will be going quickly as the school schedule moves forward and you will want to keep up with it.

There are many things you can do so that the family doesn’t feel overwhelmed during the school year. While sleep is at the top of the list, it’s also about sticking to a schedule, keeping life balanced, knowing where to find things in your home and more. Here are 10 back-to-school tips for parents with a new baby and a school-age child.

1) Rest on the Same Schedule: Put the kids in bed and then get in bed as well. No TV watching. You will probably have to get up in the night for a feeding. By the time the baby is going to be fed at night, you will already have had some rest. Do the feeding and get back to sleep. People start resenting each other when they are tired, so rest is more important than anything else for you and your spouse.

2) Ride to School Refreshed: In the morning, mommy will feel refreshed if she went to sleep right after the children did. Put the baby in the car seat and drive the kids to school. The sleep was important because you want to get behind the wheel with your family in the car feeling rested in the morning.

3) Organize to Save Time: It doesn’t matter how much space you have, if you are organized it can work. One of the hardest things to do during the school year is to get the children’s clothes together. When each child has their own drawer or a cubby hole, you can easily find things rather than spending time searching through a hamper.

4) Pre-Pack Lunches: At night while daddy is holding the baby, you should lay out the children’s clothes for the morning as well as pack their lunches before you go to bed. Remember to refrigerate their lunch boxes.

5) Restock on the Weekends: Weekends are a good time to get restocked on everything your family needs in the house during the week. Make sure the laundry is done, the snacks are available and so on.

To read the rest of this list, head over to

What are your tips for Back-to-School?  Let us know in the comments below!


This article originally appeared on Pregnant Chicken.

I think I can, I think I can, I think I can… the final (ahem!) push is on until your baby arrives and changes your world forever. While your hormones have probably already brought on some major nesting, your pregnancy brain might leave you feeling like there’s something you’ve forgotten.  (And there inevitably is.)  Here’s my list of 19 must-do’s for month 9 of pregnancy.

1. Treat yourself to a mani/pedi.

Not only do you deserve some pampering, but your hands will feature prominently in a zillion photos of your new bundle of joy. Plus, you’ll likely be doing a bunch of shuffling around in flip flops post-labor.

2. Pack a “going home” outfit for baby.

You’ll most likely keep your newborn swaddled in (awesome) hospital blankets until you head home, so no need to bring cute outfits for wearing in the hospital, but don’t forget to pack that Instagram-worthy outfit and hat.  #Homewardbound!

3. Go on a date…or 6.

It’s tough to predict when you’ll next head out solo with your significant other. Take advantage of the last few weeks by doing things as a couple before your family grows by one or (eek!) more.

4. Upgrade your phone storage.

You are about to become the next Anne Geddes, at least in your world, taking so many photos and videos of your baby that you’ll hit your storage max quickly. Don’t let that video of your baby’s first coo get cut off because you feel too guilty to erase the 75 pictures you took of the first stroller walk.

5. Speaking of photos, research a newborn photographer.

Get some recommendations from friends, then get the low down on fees (there can be a big difference between the cost of having them taken and actually getting them printed). Photographers like to do these in the first two weeks of life, so do the legwork now so you’re not scrambling to hire one in a sleep-deprived, zombie-like state.

6. Ask for a foot rub.

Cankles or not, propping your feet up and having them rubbed will feel ah-mazing. Your significant other or anyone within arms reach of your perch on the couch will do.  (You’ve earned it – and it’s pretty hard to turn down a woman who can’t reach her own feet.)

7. Sign up for Amazon Prime.

If you haven’t already, do it now, because ordering baby supplies from your phone and receiving them within two days is one of the greatest conveniences in the modern world.

8. Invest in a nice, new yoga outfit.

Kate Middleton left the hospital with a bump, and you will too. The good news about not being a princess is that yoga clothing is acceptable as everyday wear. Purchase an outfit that is comfortable and makes you feel good (don’t get too ambitious on sizing), and you can wear it leaving the hospital and when visitors swing by. Grab a headband and some dry shampoo too, since washing and drying your hair will become a luxury.

9. Make new playlists.

You’ll never be so grateful to Steve Jobs for putting 1,000 songs in your pocket than when you’re a new parent.  Make a playlist for the hospital, one for car rides or long walks with baby, and one with some soothing, mellow tunes that will keep you and baby relaxed. Your Pandora will be set to Raffi station for the next 6 years, so enjoy your favorites now.

10. Fill up your Netflix queue and download some page-turners to your Kindle.

Newborns nurse or bottle feed 10 to 12 times a day, for 20 to 30 minutes at a time (and that’s once you both get the hang of it… in the earliest days, it can be an hour or more). That’s a lot of time captive in a glider or on your couch, and we survived it by reading the Hunger Games and re-watching 30 Rock and Arrested Development in their entirety.

To check out the rest of this list, visit and let us know in the comments what your last month of pregnancy checklist includes!  And don’t forget to order yourself a Post Bump Bag from The Stork Bag!

This article originally posted on Working Mother

Motherhood is a blessing. It comes with its share of pleasures and aches. Being with your baby at home all day long makes you happy. Work life seems like a blurred memory. But, as soon as you realize that your maternity leave is about to end, you start to worry!

You may have thought through your decision to go back to work a dozen times. However, you still need to be prepared for the avalanche of emotions that will hit you when you actually get down to doing so. You may feel guilty about spending time away from your baby or leaving him/her in someone else’s care.

Such times can be quite difficult, but by keeping certain things in mind, getting back to work won’t be that stressful. In fact, a study led by the New York’s Columbia University School of Social Work clearly proves that returning to work after maternity leave doesn’t result in the baby’s suffering in any way. So, keep your qualms aside.

Here are five tips that will help you transition back to your professional life smoothly after the maternity leave.

1. Prepare Yourself for the New Routine

The more you’re prepared for your new life, the better you will get at managing multiple demands. Here’s what you can follow:

  • The transition to becoming a working mother is about organization and being prepared. Start making a daily to-do list in order to get more organized. This can cover tasks related to your home, work and your baby.
  • Take extra precautions. Make sure you set your alarm so you wake up extra early during your first week back at work in order to give yourself enough time to work out the kinks (you never know) in your schedule.
  • Schedule a meeting with your boss beforehand and discuss your job duties so you’ll know what’s expected of you after your maternity leave.
  • If you plan to breastfeed after returning to work, talk to your employer in advance and come up with a pumping schedule that works best for both you and your baby. Ask your boss if he/she could provide you with a clean and private room. Most importantly, after about a couple of weeks, have someone else feed your baby a bottle of breastmilk to help your baby adapt.

2. Try Your Best to Keep It Together

When you go back to work, you may find it difficult to get used to performing your daily tasks. Keep the following in mind:

  • There’s no harm in asking for help. If you are not able settle in at work, don’t shy away from accepting help from your co-workers. If this happens at home as well, ask for support from your partner and other family members.
  • Consider a daily phone call or text message to your baby’s caregiver to find out how your baby’s doing.
  • Make sure to be prepared with backup plans to deal with situations effectively when your baby is sick or the caregiver is unavailable.

3. Stock up on Essentials

Carrying the following along with you to work can be quite beneficial:

  • Remember, how you had considered to buy used ultrasound device for listening to your baby’s heartbeat during your pregnancy, and had later rented one. It’s time to keep that device aside and buy a breast pump.
  • Carry extra nursing pads.
  • Get some healthy and nutritious snacks and keep them at your desk.

To read the rest of the article, please visit

Do you have any back to work tips? Please leave them in the comments below, we would love to hear from you!

(This article originally appeared on Scary Mommy.)

On Thursday, the internet powers-that-be, specifically Unicode, “the computing industry standard for encoding,” are gifting us with 56 new emojis for 2017. These include a zombie, a bowl of cereal, an elf, a bearded dude, a woman with a hijab, men and women in lotus positions, gender non-binary adults and children, and — may the heavens open and lactation consultants rejoice — an emoji of a woman breastfeeding.

Sisters in boobage, we have an emoji.

I don’t have to tell you this is a big deal. Unicode approved a baby bottle emoji in 2010, and since then, that bottle’s been the only way to use emojis to express infant feeding. And this has been a big deal, for several reasons: According to the proposal for the breastfeeding emoji, the baby bottle ranks in the top 50% of emojis used. It’s also important when U.S. breastfeeding rates are only 49.4% at six months, and 40.7% exclusive breastfeeding at three months — meaning 59% of mothers are supplementing by three months (this can include formula or food). So more than 50% of mamas do need that bottle emoji by then. Nobody is taking issue with that, I promise.

The CDC’s goals for 2020 have 60.6% of mothers nursing at six months, and 46.2% nursing exclusively at three months. The only way we’ll accomplish that is to make breastfeeding more accessible, and one of the key ways to make it more accessible is to make it more acceptable, more normal, more woven into the fabric of society.

Cue our new emoji.

The breastfeeding emoji was submitted for just that reason by Rachel Lee, a registered nurse at University College of London Hospital. She argued that it would fill a gap “given the prevalence of breastfeeding in cultures around the world, and throughout history.” She cites the frequency of breastfeeding, especially at birth (nearly 80% in the United States), and argues that other apps and sticker packs include breastfeeding moms. Apparently a breastfeeding emoji was one of the top 30 emoji requests, and inspired a petition, in addition to many tweets asking for it.

To read the entire article, please visit the link below:

This article originally appeared on, Mother Rising: A Holistic Pregnancy Blog.


The Best Foods for Morning Sickness Relief

My readers and friends have been so kind with all their suggestions for the best foods for morning sickness relief. Just as it takes a village to raise a child, it takes a village to help a woman through the plight of “morning” sickness.

Feel better soon by eating the best foods for morning sickness.  The right foods make all the difference during the early months of pregnancy.  Without any further rambling, here is a list of the best foods for morning sickness relief!

Foods for Morning Sickness Relief

To read the full article, please visit


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