Sunday, July 31, 2011

Babies are expensive. Sheesh.

As I was lying in bed last night, waiting for my body to decide it was time to fall asleep, thoughts filled my head.  It’s always like that for me.  My mind just races once I lie down—and it’s gotten particularly worse since I had the munchkin.  I am tired all day, and when bedtime comes, I just lie there wide awake, while my husband just snores away.   

Rather than plot against my husband—who is peacefully resting J I allowed my brain to wander for a time—in hopes that I would finally relax and drift off.

Last night, I got to thinking that perhaps I should write a post about the necessities for having a new baby around.  As a military wife, we can’t just go out and buy every little thing our heart desires.  We might have to move it all across the country—multiple times!!  Alas!  We must be selective! 

So, I decided to compile a list for all the moms-to-be out there.  Let me preface this by saying that I’m pretty practical.  The reason I say that is—this list, in my opinion doesn’t have any fluff.   

  • Crib
  • Changing table—I had a lot of people say that it was going to be a waste—but because I’m a “everything in it’s place” kinda gal—I LOVE my changing table.
  • Rocker/Glider etc. 
  • Dresser for baby—or a way to organize blankets, bibs, and bedding

  • 5-7 Sleepers (more for newborn) I recommend either sleep sacks, or sleep n plays with footies—and I also recommend 100% Cotton
  • 10-12 “outfits” that you would take them out in (Less for Newborn)
  • 5-7 “outfits” that you would hang out in the house in—unless you are ok to leave them in their pjs (which I totally did)
  • Don’t forget bibs (10), baby blankets (10-15—depending on the season), burp rags (10), and crib sheets (2)           
Tips on clothing a newborn—

  • Socks are hard to keep on—so I would just leave my little one in pjs with footsies—that way his feet stayed warm.  In fact, my son is now six months old and he has YET to wear a pair of socks.
  • Remember that putting them in pants might be tricky until the umbilical cord falls off (which took almost 3 weeks for us)
  • Buying onesies with the little pockets that tuck over their hands are helpful and keep them from scratching their face

You’ll need a Bathtub a few wash clothes, and a couple towels.  I would recommend this tub


  • A swing
  • A exersaucer/play seat
  • A monitor (I HIGHLY recommend getting a video monitor)
  • Stroller and Carseat
  • High chair/booster chair
  • Play Mat
  • You might want a bassinet/cradle/packnplay for your little one to sleep in if they are in your room
Extras that I LOVE

  • Baby Beaba—Steams and purees food for my LO (I make my own babyfood—much cheaper and healthier—and pretty easy!)  It’s an investment, but in the end is WAY cheaper than buying the jars.
  • Noise machine
  • Bottle dry rack
  • Baby gate—we use it more for a doggie gate.  I’m sure that will change once my munchkin is mobile
  • If you are planning on nursing—I HIGHLY recommend getting a breast pump.  They are VERY helpful!! 
  • Also, I LOVE this diaper organizer.  LOVE.  LOVE.  LOVE.  It might not be a must for everyone, but for me it is a MUST.  It's called "Diaper Depot" by Prince Lionheart.

I would encourage you to register for your big ticket items so that people have the option of buying you those for your shower gifts.  Friends can go in together to purchase the large items and you will have them when needed instead of having to go buy them.   

Tips to make mommyhood easier!           

  • Order your diapers and wipes from (through the Amazon mom program—which is awesome)
  • When you purchase diapers, keep the box they come in.  Then, when you need a place to put all of the clothes that your munchkin has outgrown, you can put the clothes in there and tape it up.  Free box…and, for the military wives—you automatically know that diaper boxes=baby clothing (or baby stuff).  J
  • Do a load of laundry a day to keep up with it!  Then it won’t seem overwhelming.
  • Ask for help. 
  • Have a “mobile changing station” in your car.  Keep a basket or bag with diapers, wipes, etc. in it so that you don’t have to dig all the time in the diaper bag when you are out and about
  • Also, I get free shipping through Amazon—so I order anything and everything I can to make my life easier.  I get my dog food through Amazon—and it’s awesome!  I don’t have to go to the pet store and lug the 30 pound bag out of the store while trying not to drop my new bundle of joy.  It comes right to my doorstep—for the exact same price I would pay for it at the pet store.  WIN.

I hope that I have given good advice!  So, other moms out there---what are your tips to make mommyhood easier?  Is there any thing I missed that you consider a MUST in your home? 

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Catching you up to speed...

I decided I would use this blog as a personal blog, as well as a public forum to encourage other military wives and share information. Sharing information and helping people is one of my favorite things about the military life. (More on that another day)
This post is to tell you readers (if I have any at this point) a little more about my situation. My husband and I have been married four years now. We have moved four times (about to be five), and have lived in 3 different states. He is a pilot in the Navy and will soon be attached to an Aircraft Carrier. He flies the E2-Hawkeye. We have two crazy pups, and a wonderful son together. I love my life and even though I miss my family dearly, and of course the homeland (no, not the US–I’m speaking of Texas :) ), I LOVE the military life. Today that is.
There are days that it is very stressful. But, that is true with any life that I could have.
My husband is awaiting his next big block of training flights before he goes to the boat to become carrier qualified in his plane. Once he does that, our life could spin into a dozen different directions. He could be sent to California, Japan, or stay here. He could deploy right way for six to nine months, deploy for only a month, or he might not deploy for several months. What I’m saying is, I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT MY LIFE WILL LOOK LIKE IN 90 DAYS. Aaaaah! (Just breathe, Ashley)
Ok…now that I’ve talked myself off of a ledge, I just have to remember that I’ve been in this place before. The place where I have no choice but to breathe and know that it will all be ok. The place where I choose to have faith that there are friends waiting for me wherever we are sent. The place where I know at the end of the day, I love my man more than anything and that my family–while challenged quite a bit in our four short years, is resilient beyond its age. And then…I choose to be excited about the news. Excited that we will have an adventure of sorts–we just don’t know what that adventure will be!
In preparing for a deployment or a move(or both), my list is growing:
  • Power of Attorney
  • Passports
  • Purging/Organizing
  • Researching possible options for housing in each place
  • Savoring all the moments we have with my husband here
  • Taking lots of pictures and videos of Daddy for the munchkin to see…

Oh, and dog food. We definitely need dog food. Nice to know that even though life will be turned upsidedown, there are things that will remain constant.

Marrying into the Military...

Great–the man you love has proposed to you! Congratulations! Now is the time for you to just enjoy your engagement, smile longingly into one another’s eyes, have all the time in the world to set a date (and order anything and everything that will display your date–napkins, gifts for your guests, candies, etc.), and just genuinely enjoy planning your one special day
rush to find a place that will get you hitched before your honey heads out, you move across the country (or world), and have to completely start anew with said man. This means moving your things, your life, making new friends, finding new jobs, a new church, a new home, and sometimes the most daunting—finding your way around town (gasp!). Thank goodness for GPS!
My personality is to research and try to know exactly what I’m getting myself into before any decision. Ha!! If there’s one thing that you should know about military life right now it’s that you’ll never get the full “scoop” on something from your military member. Sure, they’ll tell you everything they’ve been told–and everything they know. But, things will usually have a way of turning out very different than you will ever imagine! (Which isn’t always bad!)
Ok–back to the topic–a new military wife. If you are about to become a military wife, I would go out and pick up the book, “Married to the Military” by Meredith Leyva. It’s an awesome book that will give you a ton of answers. It will also help you navigate the acronyms of the military! It was a lifesaver for me!

By: Meredith Leyva

Hello [blog] World!

I’m new at this–blogging. However, as my title would suggest, I am simply a military wife, who thought I would never end up with a man in uniform. And now, I’ve uprooted and moved multiple times–each time making new friends, creating a home, and adjusting to a new community. I decided that, perhaps, I DID have something to say. Some knowledge to impart. Some truth to share.
I’m not always positive. I’m not always politically correct. I am not the perfect military wife. But, I love my husband, I love my country, and I will do my best to support the things I love.

Here we go…