Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Thursday Thirteen: Useful pregnancy stuff

In no particular order, here are 13 items I found useful while I was pregnant:

1. Blush topless undershirts. I first heard about these from a friend, but heard even more about them from a few of the mom bloggers. After I lost a few contests for them, I bought two for myself for chanukah with money my MIL sent. I LOVE them. They worked great to cover the annoying belly panel in my maternity pants at the end when I got so big my shirts no longer did it. Plus, on one occasion, I was able to wear a regular pair of dress pants and use the Blush to cover the fact that the top wasn't zipped (or anywhere near that) plus it held them up. I wear these all the time now to keep me covered when nursing. Honestly, I'm far more freaked out by the idea of someone seeing my postpartum stomach than my breast. Plus, these work great for helping to hide the belly bulge. They don't suck you in at all, but having the extra layer over it helps to cover the extra rolls.

2. Yoga pants. I believe it was Ima on the Bima who made the suggestion via twitter (see #10). After trying and failing to find decent maternity pants at reasonable prices, I sent out a tweet asking for tips or specific stores. At first, I wasn't sure about buying regular yoga pants (not maternity), but then I realized the new pair of maternity pants I had just spent a fortune on (with elastic waist rather than the panel) were really just glorified yoga pants, only not nearly as comfy as my much cheaper yoga pants had been. So I hit Wal-Mart and was shocked to find that even while hugely pregnant, the regular yoga pants (I went with Danskin) had enough give for me to wear a small. I saved a ton of money and I can still wear them now.

3. Earth Mama Angel Baby's Happy Mama Spray. I won a small bottle of this in a blog giveaway (along with some other Earth Mama Angel Baby products) and I LOVE it. The smell is wonderful and it really does help with nausea. Dh had to deal with something that had an awful smell and made him feel nauseated. I sprayed some of this on fabric and had him hold it over his face. It helped. My only complaint is that it fades quickly. Don't bother putting it on your skin. Instead, put it on clothing. The fabric holds the scent much better. I wish I had had this earlier in my pregnancy (when the morning sickness was kicking my butt). It's great.

4. Pepermint oil. I LOVE taking baths with pepermint oil. The scent helps wake you up which is much needed during the third trimester. Plus, pepermint has a warming sensation which helped with my sore muscles. Be VERY careful, though. You only need a few drops in the bath. I also used a few drops mixed with olive oil and applied directly to the areas where I was sore. Smells much better than the comercial alternatives. Again, be very very careful and only use a tiny bit.

5. SinuCleanse Squeeze. I had a netti pot, but was not a big fan. I could never hold it comfortably and it hurt. My midwife admitted she had the same problem and suggested I try this. I LOVE it. It helps so much with stuffy noses. During pregnancy, you're limited in what drugs you can take plus you tend to get bloody noses and everything irritates your nose. This helped with the congestion, it helped prevent bloody noses and it didn't bother my nose at all. The pack I got came with premeasured packs of salt which helped as well. This is SO much easier than the netti pot and it works great.

6. Funny videos. We always need a laugh, but we particularly need one (or many) while pregnant. I LOVED getting (and sharing) funny videos while I was pregnant. It didn't matter if my back hurt, if I was feeling hormonal, or if I was exhausted; I still laughed and felt a bit better.

7. Platform shoes. In the last month of my pregnancy, I could no longer comfortably reach the pedals in the car. Wearing platform shoes was the only way to do that. No, I'm not kidding. My chiropractor (see #8) said that as long as they were flat, I was fine.

8. Chiropractors. This was my third pregnancy, but the first time I saw a chiropractor and I wish I had been able to see one with my other pregnancies. I got relief for my back, pelvis and shoulders. It was wonderful. I found myself trying to will time to move a bit faster so that I could get to my next appointment.

9. Wii Fit. We didn't do individual gifts to each other for chanukah. Instead, we got a Wii and dh found the Fit (not an easy task before Xmas). I was able to do most of the yoga moves and a good deal of the strength moves all through pregnancy. It's the first time I've exercised during pregnancy and I liked it. Dh has lost 20 lbs since we got the Fit. I didn't lose any, but it did help keep me in shape. Plus, there is NOTHING as hysterical as a woman 9 months pregnant hula hooping on the Wii Fit. FTR, even while pregnant, I still made it to Professional Penguin.

10. twitter. Twitter was fabulous for getting reviews, finding giveaways, and just keeping me distracted. I was able to win some free things for the baby through giveaways I found there. I was able to try (and avoid) products after reading reviews. I found other pregnant women with whom to compare notes and share stories plus I found other great parenting-related blogs through twitter.

11. Comfortable slip-on shoes. Luckily, my platforms (see #7) were comfortable, but one pair required tying (very difficult while pregnant) and the other pair are sandals (not always useful in the winter). So I typically wore low simple slip on shoes. I had one pair that got worn to death. They were flat and had velcro, but could be slipped on easily. I also found a pair on clearance at Wal-Mart for $3.50. Yes, they were those horrid croc knock-offs (I am generally not a fan of crocs), but they're comfy and they have removable fur lining which made them warm and they could easily be slipped on and off. I took the lining out of them the other day and wore them in the yard. Anything that's cheap, comfortable and can be used postpartum is fabulous even if it is ugly.

12. Music. During labor, my playlist came in particularly handy. I found singing helped me get through contractions.

13. Birth necklace (will post picture in the morning). At my shower/blessingway, my friends made me a birth necklace. This is something we have done at every shower for the past few years. I started it when I came across the idea online and we did it through everyone else's shower even when I didn't know if I would ever get pregnant again. It truly was a blessing not only to be among friends, but to actually be pregnant and surrounded by friends. Everyone picked a bead for each of their children and added it to the necklace. I was wearing the necklace when my daughter was born. It was so neat to have something that represented my friends and their prayers and good thoughts for me.

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Hootin' Anni said...

I'm long past the pregnancy days myself, but that peppermint oil bath sounds heavenly.

My 13 is posted. What I see on the back of a cereal's a fun 13 this week...come join me if you find time.

I am Harriet said...

How I don't miss any of it...

Brenda ND said...

Yep, these things sound very useful. Happy Beginnings.

xakara said...

Yoga pants are the secret to many things. Glad you found them and the other wonderful things. The necklace sounds beautiful.

Happy TT


Phyllis Sommer said...

great list, thanks for the shoutout.

makes me want another....

TheFeministBreeder said...

OMG I LOVE the EMAB spray. My friend Kathryn brought me a gift pack of EMAB stuff to the hospital, and she sprayed that stuff all around the room while I was trying to come down from the screaming match with my (s)OB. I really REALLY think it helped change the energy in the room. Thanks EMAB for helping me have a more calm VBAC!

The pack also came with some great lip balm and postpartum tea, but I never got around to using it because I didn't have a tea pot at the time.

Reiza said...

I got the PP tea too, but it's loose and I have no clue how to make tea unless it's already in a tea bag. I know it's probably not that difficult, but in the postpartum days, trying to figure that out was the last thing on my mind.

I got the EMAB bath tea (it's a soak for the tub after birth). I actually got 2 jars of it (won one and my niece sent another). I really liked that stuff too. It seemed to help plus, when you're done, the stuff is supposed to be good as fertilizer.