Category Archives: Pregnancy

Celebrating the Wait for Baby Bird #2

Papa Bird took this picture of me in our neighbors’ backyard the other day.

Little Bird #1 ran back and forth between his legs and mine.

She turned two this week and is excited to be a big sister. A couple more weeks, give or take…

Updates and News

Hey all, I’ve got a few quick updates!

1. I’ve joined as a regular blogger. My first post, on Breastfeeding While Pregnant, was published this week.

Breastfeeding While Pregnant

2. Next, if you read my post on Our Baby Centered Approach to Introducing Solids, you may have seen that I recently joined a taping of the Boob Group podcast on “Breastfeeding and Introducing Solids” as a panelist. The podcast is now live and available here or through the podcast app on your smart phone.

Introducing Solids

3. And congratulations to Tamara, winner of our giveaway of three of our favorite natural morning sickness remedies! Although her selection was random, I was happy our winner is someone who can currently benefit from some relief. I hope at least one of the products helps her!

Win a Morning Sickness Prize Pack!

Win Mama Bird’s Natural Morning Sickness Remedies Gift Bag!

Want to win the natural morning sickness remedies pictured in my post, Mama Bird’s Big List of (Mostly) Natural Morning Sickness Remedies?

Win a Morning Sickness Prize Pack!

I’m giving away a prize pack of three of my most favorite! All you have to do is comment on the original post with which method you would most likely try, who you would like to give the gift to, or with what worked for you. You may enter once each day, starting NOW, and ending at midnight (PST) one week from now (Thursday, May 9th.) The winner will be selected randomly from the comments, using Remember to comment on the original post, not on this one, so that the comments are all in one place!

One winner will win one (1) package each of Psi BandsPreggie Pop Drops, and Ginger Chews (as pictured above.) The prizes will be mailed free of charge within the United States.

That’s it! No other catch or requirements. But feel free to share with friends and subscribe to the blog in the box in the upper right, “like” us on Facebook, and/or follow on Twitter and Pinterest!

Mama Bird’s Big List of (Mostly) Natural Morning Sickness Remedies

First, an announcement: I’m pregnant again! I’ve shared about baby chicks, baby goats and now a brand new (human) baby bird is coming.

Next, a proclamation: I hate feeling nauseous and throwing up! The good news is that I learned a lot of natural morning sickness remedies (and a few not so natural) my first go around. I had it pretty bad and now consider myself a bit of an expert. The next day after my positive home pregnancy test, I jumped on Amazon and ordered a few provisions.

18 (Mostly) Natural Morning Sickness Remedies

Not a fan of being sick, either? Here is a list of all of the remedies I have tried and found helpful. They are roughly in order from more natural to more intensive. Please remember that I am not a physician and you should always consult your own midwife, doctor, or care provider regarding your own particular health.

  1. Preggie Pop Drops. These are little sour candies. The company also makes lollipops, but I find them too big. The drops can really help you get to the place where you are ready to eat something else. They are also good to have stashed in your purse, diaper bag and desk at work.
  2. Crackers. Keep them on your bedside table. Eat them when you wake up in the middle of the night and upon first waking. My first pregnancy I liked water crackers, but this time I like Hawaiian soda crackers. (I have heard that there is something about baking soda that settles the stomach.)
  3. Psi Bands!!! These are bracelets that push on a pressure point on your inner wrist that directly reduces nausea.  Crazy, but they really work to take the edge off. On bad days, I wore them nearly the whole day and took them off to sleep. Sea Bands are a similar concept but look a little like an ace bandage.

  1. This may sound gross, but if you are for sure going to throw up, eat something that isn’t so bad coming up, like applesauce. My first pregnancy, I could guarantee vomiting at least once in the morning throughout weeks 8-16, and this helped it go a little easier.
  2. Fresh Ginger. You can make tea, add it to smoothies…
  3. Ginger Candy. There’s ginger hard candyginger chews, ginger gum, and crystalized ginger. Spicy, but effective.

  1. Ginger Beer and Ginger Ale. Start by sipping just a little.
  2. Eat like a toddler. Really the secret is to keep food in your stomach. Frequent, small meals are the way to go. At the peak of morning sickness, I ate something every 30 minutes. This time around, I snack whenever I feed Little Bird a snack (usually the same thing), and it works out. Also, snacks and sweets are good to get you to the place you can eat, but the goal is to eat a mini balanced meal. Protein and complex carbohydrates are especially important in making you feel good again.
  3. Humor your cravings and aversions (as long as they aren’t totally unhealthy or unsafe.) Pregnancy likes/dislikes are fickle, but for the most part, go with them. Can’t get enough fresh watermelon? Great! My first pregnancy, after days of not wanting to eat anything, I found that I could eat fresh Vietnamese spring rolls. I then ate them four days in a row.
  4. Going for a walk outside. Yup, the last thing you probably want to do. But getting outside and getting the blood flowing can help. Other gentle exercise, like yoga, could help, too. I like to stay very active during pregnancy, typically with Bar Method, but first trimester is definitely a time to find balance with gentle, easy exercise.

  1. Coca-cola. I know, not very natural. But my mother is from the South and gave us a little bit of coke when we were sick and it strangely can settle the stomach. (Like the ginger beer or ginger ale, start by sipping a little, a whole can would probably make me feel worse from all the sugar.) If you are worried about GMO corn syrup, try a Mexican market. The coke sold in bottles is usually made with cane sugar. You can also buy the mini cans instead of 12oz ones.
  2. Vitamin B-6 was recommended by my doctor. I personally didn’t find it super helpful. A fried of mine found good results with a shot of B-6, which is usually a much larger dose.
  3. Soothing teas. I personally didn’t find tea appetizing, but others find pregnancy teas soothing. A Facebook friend suggested drinking it iced. I found making my Red Raspberry Leaf tea iced for the third trimester vastly improved the taste. Here is a recipe.

This next section are remedies that you may want to tell your doctor/midwife you are using, just to be sure that they aren’t contraindicated in your particular case.

  1. Acupuncture. Chinese Medicine has been the single most helpful remedy for both of my pregnancies. When selecting a practitioner, find one who specializes in OB/GYN. For my first, even after morning sickness subsided, I continued going regularly for all of those pesky, but normal, pregnancy symptoms throughout the entire term. If you are in San Diego, I recommend Eti Domb, L.Ac. (You can also read in this post how it helped naturally induce my full term baby.)
  2. Along with acupuncture, Chinese Herbs have been used for millennia. It has always seemed strange to me that western medicine  says to avoid herbs of any kind during pregnancy, while still prescribing heavy pharmaceuticals. Their answer: there hasn’t been enough studies to prove the safety of herbs. Well, turns out there is plenty of peer-reviewed evidence published. It’s just in Chinese!! I have been amazed by the benefit I’ve received from herbs given to me in conjunction with acupuncture. Many of the ingredients are not that scary: ginger, licorice, orange peel, cinnamon, date…  (I tend to be a rule follower and dutifully informed my doctor of everything I am taking. At first the doctors got into a tizzy that licorice could raise my blood pressure, but since mine remains 100/50, they have grudgingly approved of the tincture.) If you want to consult with someone, Eti is available by phone for those outside of San Diego. My friend Ahlea also consults locally and by phone on pre- and postnatal nutrition and herbs.
  3. Two over the counter medications that I did not try, but that my doctor recommended are Benadryl and Unisom (especially in combination with B-6). I didn’t try them out, but it might be worth discussing a trial of one or both with your doctor before trying a prescription.

And if all that fails and you are interested in talking to your doctor about a prescription, here are my thoughts on a few medications I have tried. Remember, I am not a doctor, just offering my own personal reviews.

  1. Zofran (Ondansetron) is prescribed for nausea and vomiting associated with surgery, cancer and Hyperemesis gravidarum (extreme morning sickness marked by dehydration.) In my case, I was given a pill that dissolved in my mouth and tasted like mint and artificial sweetener. It worked like a miracle but had a catch, the next day after using it I invariably suffered from painful constipation. Thankfully, this pregnancy I have only had to use Zofran once, but during my first, although I treated it as my last resort, I did have to use it regularly in order to function at work. I also used the smallest amount possible, and often found a quarter of a pill helped. Although I tried not to use it, sometimes simply having it in my bag with me eased the anxiety that I wouldn’t be able to get through the day. For other nursing mothers: my doctor (and my own research) indicated that Zofran is acceptable to use while breastfeeding, but obviously do your own research and use caution. (Thankfully I managed to always keep myself hydrated and nourished and did not have to go to the ER. But for those that do, Zofran is often given IV, along with fluids.)
  2. Phenergan (Promethazine) is also prescribed for Hyperemesis gravidarum. It is  an antihistamine and is very sedating. Its use is NOT recommended during breastfeeding.  I did not like it at all. Even a quarter of a pill knocked me out completely in a “drugged” kind of way. I can’t imagine anyone being able to use it while caring for a toddler. But everyone reacts differently!

So there you go! More than enough ideas to at least start with.

Enter a giveaway of a prize pack with my favorite remedies here!

What worked for you? please comment and share morning sickness remedies that you recommend or would like to try.

Disclaimer: I am an Amazon Affiliate, meaning qualifying purchases made through links in this post, any post, and in our Store, are fulfilled by Amazon and may result in a small percentage as a referral fee being paid to Baby Birds Farm. Your price will never go up because of that, in fact, you will automatically get the lowest price Amazon offers. Purchasers are strictly anonymous, and we are never informed of who makes purchases or what they buy. If you do buy something I’ve featured, or even just do your general shopping of anything on Amazon, we appreciate your support!

Everything You Need to Set up a Cloth Diaper Changing Station

Perhaps you are reading this post because you have decided to start cloth diapering and are getting ready and organizing! Hooray! You won’t regret it. Here is a list of everything you need to get a cloth diaper changing station organized, set up and running.

Organize a Cloth Diaper Changing Station

Maybe you are still exploring options. There are lots of reasons why parents today are choosing cloth diapers, including the environment, saving money, being softer and less toxic for baby, less diaper rash and looking cute! To see a lot of great diaper statistics check out this link.

My path to cloth diapers was kind of round about. My mom loved to talk about dunking poopy cloth in and out of the toilet. No way was I going to do that. (Of course, now that I am 16 months into this parenting thing, a little poop doesn’t faze me, but don’t worry, it is not a requirement anymore!) Neither was I interested in using diaper pins, folding up sad looking rags, or being the parent of “that” child with the pee leaks.

Luckily, sometime before I was even pregnant, I stumbled upon the website for a hybrid diaper company and bookmarked it. (Yes, this was in the days before Pinterest.) An option that uses less plastic, creates less waste and was less toxic to baby immediately appealed to me. As it turns out, hybrid diapers were my gateway drug to cloth. And what is a hybrid diaper? Basically, a reusable outer diaper cover with a disposable or biodegradable insert. They may also be used with a cloth insert.

A day or two after bringing baby bird home from the hospital, we realized cloth wipes were so much softer on her little bum than disposable wipes. In about a week (when she was back up to 7 pounds), she fit into newborn sized gDiapers. We started with the biodegradable inserts, but once we got over our fear of washing something with poop on it, we realized how great it is to use cloth. You buy it once (or twice) and done! No late-night trips to the store for a box of Huggies.

We are in no way endorsed by or receiving money from gDiapers. Full disclosure: I am an Amazon affiliate and may receive a small percentage from them for sales made after clinks on these links. There are other great cloth diapers out there, and I know of moms who try lots of brands before settling on the ones they like. However, we started with their newborn pack and loved them. I have tried only one other cloth brand and hated them. I also believe that “one size” diapers that are meant to fit all babies from newborn to toddler… don’t. For us, the option to use gDiapers with either biodegradable or cloth inserts has been great. We use cloth during the day and biodegradable while she sleeps. We take the bio while flying on planes, but have been able to use cloth on vacation. For more on composting biodegradable inserts, check out the next post.

After it languished on our baby registry, we purchased the newborn package which includes newborn and small sized gPants plus a package of biodegradables. But I started thinking that maybe that wasn’t all I needed. Because you don’t put dirty cloth diapers in a diaper genie, do you? So, I am now writing the post that I wish I could’ve read 1.5 to two years ago!

Here is a list of supplies and products that help make cloth diapering easy as pie! As many of us do with our first baby, I spent hours upon hours researching each and every product. Please comment if you have any questions. In the photo below you can see our set up.

Organize a Cloth Diaper Changing Station

A- step can as a diaper pail – There is no need for a fancy diaper trash can, just use a well-made but inexpensive step can, such as this simplehuman one, and use a washable, waterproof liner (B) .
B- diaper pail liner – Tip: Buy two so you always have one available while the other is in the wash. Wash by dumping the diapers straight into the washer and then throw the liner in. (See? No touching poop.)
C- compost pail –  This can hold wet, as in pee-only (no poop) biodegradable inserts before going out to the garden. Even if you have a compost pail in your kitchen, it’s convenient for those middle of the night changes to have one in the nursery. For more on composting diaper inserts, check out this next post.
D- gDiapers gCloth Inserts – For full-time use, I suggest 24-30 cloth inserts.
E- gDiapers gPants  – For full-time use, try 8-10 gPants. This link is to a 6-pack, a great value to get started. but they also come individually or in 2-packs in other colors and patterns. I have seen the 2-packs at Target, Babies R Us and Whole Foods. The cutest, limited prints (and yes, one of ours has a ruffle-butt) are found on Tip: Attach velcro under a book shelf to hang diapers. <–Have to give Papa Bird the credit for that. He’s handy that way.
F- BabyKicks Natural & Organic Baby Wipes (the rolled up cloth wipes)  Plan on having about 40 wipes in total. These BabyKicks ended up being the softest after a few washes. We use these wipes for her hands/face and wash them with her clothes.
G- and/or FuzziBunz Wonder Wipes (folded cloth wipes) – After a lot of use the other wipes were softer, but I still like the size and shape of these wipes. Since we use these ones just for wiping her bum, we throw them in the diaper pail to wash with the cloth diapers.
H- a box of gDiapers Cloth Diaper Liners – These are a cool invention: easily pull off and plop poop into a toilet. The wet-only ones can also be composted.
I- aden + anais 3 Pack Muslin Washcloths – After wiping baby’s bum with a warm washcloth, I use a washcloth to gently pat dry.
J- gDiapers Biodegradable Diaper Refills – Tip: To really save money use Amazon’s Subscribe and Save. The biodegradable inserts hold a lot more liquid than cloth, maybe even more than a disposable diaper. We prefer them for night-time and planes. Also sometimes you just want to change it up!
K- extra Gdiapers Snap-in Liners – I recommend purchasing an extra 6-pack. That way if one gets messy, it can be washed and the gPants can be worn again. I wash poopy snap in liners with the cloth diapers and wet ones with her clothes. Do not put them in the dryer.
L- hand sanitizer (similar) – This is handy in case you can’t wash your hands immediately.
M- diaper area wash  – We spray a spritz spritz or two on a warm, wet cloth. Such a nice way to wipe baby’s bum. (Tip: I’ve found Target has this for the lowest price.) After cleaning baby’s bum, gently pat dry with the wash cloth (letter I).
N,O – changing pad and its cover – Mine was a hand-me-down, originally from Pottery Barn Kids.
P- aden + anais Muslim Hooded Towel – This came as a set with one of the washcloths (I).

Not pictured:
Wet Bag
-Essential if you ever want to leave the house. This holds wet diapers, clothes, bathing suits, etc. without messing up your diaper bag.
Coconut Oil  – Yup, the exact same we use to cook. (And make belly butter.) This is the only diaper cream we use. (Keep in mind cloth diapered babies get less diaper rash.) Be careful, as many conventional diaper creams will block the absorption of cloth diapers. Coconut oil is the only “lotion” we let little one use.
Diaper sprayer – Optional, especially if you use the cloth liners.
Detergent –  I believe in KISS (Keep it Simple Stupid.) I like to use the same detergent for diapers as I do for baby’s clothes and our laundry. There are manufacturers of diaper-specific detergent, but as long as you are using an unscented, natural one, it will likely be fine. Please check out this comprehensive table to see if you favorite detergent is already on there and how it rates. Currently, I am liking BioKleen Cold Water Formula liquid detergent. It is not too expensive at my local health food store (Sprouts) and I haven’t had to strip, or deep clean, my cloth diapers since I have been using it.
Newborn pack – This link goes to the best price by far for the newborn bundle starter pack.

For reference, our little one has always been 50th to 70th percentile in height and 15th to 25th percentile in weight. She wore newborns from 2 weeks old to 5 weeks. She wore smalls from 5 weeks to 7-8 months old. Pictured are her mediums. She is still in them, and hopefully will potty train before she outgrows them! Since mediums fit up to 28 pounds, she might not ever need larges.

Again, please comment with any questions.