Mum Life

Hi, Im Janelle. Owner and Mama behind MLJ. My blog is a space for me to share a personal side of my life. From Business to Mama tips, to amazing stories I feel to share. I hope you enjoy this little space as much as I do. 

xx Janelle 

Hospital Check list

Posted by Janelle Spies on

Its always hard working out what to pack when it comes to the Birth and Stay at the hospital. I find speaking with other Mums, and following a check list makes being organised alot easier! Here is my check list for what I have packed for #3 hospital bag. 

This list is created to stay for approx 2 nights, 3 days. 

 

 

The extras I would suggest also: 

  • Have a note on the hospital bag with the few things you need hubby to grab if youre not in the mind to remember (this would be things like: Phone, Charger, toiletries you were still using that arent packed...) 
  • Pack outfits in little sandwhich bags (I do this in my day to day nappy bag also) - that way you just grab out a bag and it has the whole outfit ready in it (easy for husbands to grab and not be confused) 
  • I try not to overpack, but tend to try pack one extra of each clothing piece in case of leakage etc... 
  • Pre write and plan your birth announcement - I have a draft message saved in my notes on my phone with a text that only needs to have the name and details filled in that we can easily copy and paste to family and friends. I have also been super organised and even sent a group text to those who I plan on messaging her arrival to, so that way I don't have to worry about forgetting people or spending forever drafting messages.
  • If you're a little worried about 'stinging' down there later on - bringing a water spray bottle is helpful to 'spray' as you wee can help relieve the sting. 
  • Try to avoid strong fragrances in your toiletries - its good to smell like 'you' for skin on skin time with baby. 
  • Check with your hospital if they provide nappies and wipes or if you need too. Allow around 10 per day (so I have 20 packed actually)

 

Whats in MY hospital bag? SHOP now: 

MAMA:

BABY:

_________________________________________________________________________

I have mentioned using BIRTHCARDS during my labours. These are great to give to birth partners to help encourage you during labour when things are seeming pretty tough. My Husband and Mum read these to me, and it definitely helped keep me focused and strengthened. Some points have been taken from reading the book 'Birth Skills' by Juju Sundin. Birth pain is healthy pain, and I found the more I focused on each contraction, the better I worked through them. 

I have shared my faith of being a christian, and how its a huge part of my life. Prayer and scriptures also helped me through labour, so I printed out my favourite during hard times when I was fearful or needed strength. 

Feel free to use any of the cards for your own labour. 

 

 

 

 

 

Read more

Hospital Check list

Posted by Janelle Spies on

Its always hard working out what to pack when it comes to the Birth and Stay at the hospital. I find speaking with other Mums, and following a check list makes being organised alot easier! Here is my check list for what I have packed for #3 hospital bag. 

This list is created to stay for approx 2 nights, 3 days. 

 

 

The extras I would suggest also: 

  • Have a note on the hospital bag with the few things you need hubby to grab if youre not in the mind to remember (this would be things like: Phone, Charger, toiletries you were still using that arent packed...) 
  • Pack outfits in little sandwhich bags (I do this in my day to day nappy bag also) - that way you just grab out a bag and it has the whole outfit ready in it (easy for husbands to grab and not be confused) 
  • I try not to overpack, but tend to try pack one extra of each clothing piece in case of leakage etc... 
  • Pre write and plan your birth announcement - I have a draft message saved in my notes on my phone with a text that only needs to have the name and details filled in that we can easily copy and paste to family and friends. I have also been super organised and even sent a group text to those who I plan on messaging her arrival to, so that way I don't have to worry about forgetting people or spending forever drafting messages.
  • If you're a little worried about 'stinging' down there later on - bringing a water spray bottle is helpful to 'spray' as you wee can help relieve the sting. 
  • Try to avoid strong fragrances in your toiletries - its good to smell like 'you' for skin on skin time with baby. 
  • Check with your hospital if they provide nappies and wipes or if you need too. Allow around 10 per day (so I have 20 packed actually)

 

Whats in MY hospital bag? SHOP now: 

MAMA:

BABY:

_________________________________________________________________________

I have mentioned using BIRTHCARDS during my labours. These are great to give to birth partners to help encourage you during labour when things are seeming pretty tough. My Husband and Mum read these to me, and it definitely helped keep me focused and strengthened. Some points have been taken from reading the book 'Birth Skills' by Juju Sundin. Birth pain is healthy pain, and I found the more I focused on each contraction, the better I worked through them. 

I have shared my faith of being a christian, and how its a huge part of my life. Prayer and scriptures also helped me through labour, so I printed out my favourite during hard times when I was fearful or needed strength. 

Feel free to use any of the cards for your own labour. 

 

 

 

 

 

Read more


Baby buy list

Posted by Janelle Spies on

Baby buy list

- Janelle, My little Joy

 
A little list in preparation for baby on the way. This is my own personal list and why I recommend certain products, because thats what has worked for me with my first two babes. All are personal preference as to what brand or style you may like. At this stage I have not included clothing in this list :) I will attach a few 'check lists' I have found helpful on some websites which may help you.  

For the baby: 

Wraps/swaddles

  • I loved having swaddles, even if your baby doesn’t like to be swaddled, they are great for extra blankets (and light weight ones too!), pram/capsule covers, feeding covers (if you prefer to cover up a little) and they are also great to put down and lay baby on (on the couch, playmats, beds etc…).
  • I also loved BLACK swaddles to cover up the pram and give a little bit of black out darkness for bub! I grabbed some from baby bunting.

Sleep suits

  • I personally prefer the ‘love to dream’ sleep swaddles. I found its great for the baby to have their hands up next to their face to self soothe and have a little wriggle, while still feeling ‘secure’. For Myla we used other types of grow suits that were more like ‘cocoons’, but she would always wriggle her fingers out the top (cute…just not as practical).

                            .      

https://lovetodream.com.au/swaddle-up-original/

  Baby Comforter

  • This is completely preference. These are the 2 I have used previously – Mylas was a bamboo blankey/teddy which felt AMAZING, but not dummy attachment. Azaleas was a Kippins flamingo which was great for dummy attachment. This baby we are trying a new one from Willing Barkis (over in Ireland) and I'm pretty excited for it to arrive!!!

http://willingbarkis.com/

Baby carrier 

I have used a few carriers in my parenting over the years. I am PERSONALLY not a major 'baby wearer' as I am a very busy person and I like to have my space when getting things done. Thankfully my bubs have been great sleepers and allowed this for me. The carriers I have used and loved are:

  • Ergo sport (qld is super hot! so this fabric was great for me!) The ERGO allowed me to wear baby on my front facing inwards or outwards! I picked this one up from gumtree for about $60 second hand. 
  • Stretchy Wrap - great for the earlier months. They can be fiddly to work out but once you do they are amazing! So many beautiful ones online too! 

 

 Baby Camera

  • I never wanted to be a ‘helicopter mama’ and hover over my child while they slept, but Myla became a tummy sleeper after a few weeks and a video monitor gave me piece of mind! We used a Uniden one, but had a lot of trouble with the one we had. This baby we have the Lollipop Baby Camera, which is both stylish and practical and runs through your phone which is soo great – meaning hubby can watch too and we can also have a little ‘nanny spy camera’ when we go out later on down the track (hehe a bit sneaky but why not!)

https://www.lollipop.camera/

Baby breathing/heart monitor

  • Another ‘helicopter’ moment I have is this one! Same again- because Myla was a tummy sleeper, this gave me piece of mind! Basically it sounds an alarm if baby stops breathing or is having issues of the same sort. We used the Angelcare one.

https://www.catch.com.au/product/angelcare-deluxe-movement-sound-monitor-ac401-2pu-378465/?offer_id=111148&&iv_=__iv_p_1_a_876727627_g_43047373654_c_205608443694_k__m__w_aud-476032970597:pla-367500626599_n_g_d_c_v__l__t__r_1o1_x_pla_y_11248162_f_online_o_378465_z_AU_i_en_j_367500626599_s__e__h_9068962_ii__vi__&gclid=CjwKCAjw_b3cBRByEiwAdG8WqgFbzqgdro51nELe725xKyf3rzJ8opfUO3yCxKTB1O1V3Aw3AneGURoCulYQAvD_BwE

Terry towelling / burp cloths

  • I am HUGE on this one! We bought quite a few packs (maybe had 30 in total in the end as I was given heaps of personalised ones at my baby shower also!- I would say 15-20 is fine). These are used mostly for ‘spew rags’ pretty much! Chuck them under bubs head at night, on the playmat/bouncer/rocker/FLOOR CUSHION ;p, over your shoulder, under baby when burping… seriously… AMAZING. 

https://www.kmart.com.au/product/cotton-terry-nappies---pack-of-12/887804?gclid=CjwKCAjw_b3cBRByEiwAdG8WqijfNmZ3vSV67i7CYaBwfTcmC3uEee2i938YJApiKKvfmx0iXKIKUxoCHrAQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds&dclid=CIjWseSmo90CFcwcKgod0fwJTQ

Other things for baby

  • Bassinet/cot sheets and blankets depending on season.
  • Bassinet/cot mattress protectors - MUST 
  • Bath cloths (just some little ones from kmart are great!)
  • Bath lounge/seat - great for bub to lay in shallow water so you can wash easily. 
  • Change mat (portable ones for the nappy bag-either washable or disposable are great!)
  • Nappy bags (put those stinky ones in and shut them tight!)
  • Nappies and wipes- all personal preference – we are going to try THANKYOU brand this time round! Ill let you know how I go!
  • Dummy/Dummy chain- If you choose to go down this line, its another personal preference- we used Avent for Myla, and the old style white Dummy for Azalea- which we LOVED-big teat, easy to find and stayed in her mouth easy. They have been discontinued that exact style, but now have come out as a stylish cute version called BIBS dummy. Many online stores stock them now!
  • Portable cot- great when going to friends houses and holidays! 
  • Thermometer – we had one where you scan it over the forehead- easiest way to check a newborns temp! Loved it.
  • Pram fan – for hot summer months!
  • Car shades + car mirror
  • Baby Hair and Nail kit
  • Sound machine – some white noise is great! We have a Gro company Owl who plays soft white noise and music, but our baby monitor also plays music.

 Products:

  • Nappy rash cream
  • Bath wash/shampoos etc
  • Massage oil
  • Gripewater/infants friend (for wind… a few drops and it helps their tummy settle during feeds

BOTTLES

  • This one is hard- as some may breastfeed exclusively. I chose to have a few bottles on hand JUST in case- Which came in handy very quickly as we had major feeding issues. The bottles we loved most were Tommee Tippee and Medela. 

Big ticket items: 

I always recommend looking up second hand items on gumtree or marketplace for some of the big ticket items! You can pick up a bargain. 

  • Nappy bin- For my first two girls I had a smell proof nappy bin, which was amazing! We sold that years ago, so this time round we may just have a normal small bin, and empty it more often as our bin outside is easily accessible.Cot
  • Bassinet – this is complete preference, I personally love having a little bassinet in our room near my bed so I can get up to baby at night easier. They usually stay in the bassinet for around 10-16 weeks depending on your babys growth.
  • Play mat – just something nice for bubs to lay on and even lay under (having a playgym over them is good too!)
  • Bouncer/rocker – I personally LOVE a rocker that rocks from side to side as a lot of babies tend to not enjoy front and back rocking (some don’t mind at all- Myla was fine, Azalea didn’t like front to back rocking). We decided to get a NUNA CURV this time round. We picked up a second hand one for $130 on gumtree (brand new they are around $380).              https://www.nuna.eu/en/leaf
  • BIG GIANT CUSHION… say maybe like a round floor cushion ;p = So this is the reason I started my business- I wanted something both my girls could enjoy. A cushion for Myla to sit and read books, but also a cushion my baby could snuggle down into and have cat naps or be happy laying around… Babies feel super snug in the floor cushions…so this is obviously a MUST on my own list.                                      https://www.mylittlejoy.com.au/collections/the-floor-cushion

  • Pram- Total preference for this one! I am a pram snob! I have been through 4 prams! (Rozibaby, strider compact, icandy and now a baby jogger Versa). Im super happy with my versa- its light, easy to move around and fold up and has all the extras I need! Unfortunately though, they are discontinued- so only second hand ones for this one!
  • Car seats vs capsules – I decided to have both. I borrowed a friends capsule, but now I have my own. I found they are great for non disturbance and hook into the pram too! They can last anywhere from 12weeks-10 months (roughly…my guess…)- my girls stayed in theirs for 7 months!
  • Breast pump- This is really something best to put money aside and wait to buy once you have bubs. I ended up borrowing a friends when desperate and I had so many issues I went a bought a double swing medela pump – Which I HIGHLY recommend if you pump often!
  • Nappy handbag! - I have been through too many! You want one that fits everything but isnt a suitcase! I have two which I love: Mimco nappy bag- its big but its got great room AND my new favourite is Milki.co Nappy bag- this is the LUXURY handbag! Perfectly sized and sooo perfectly stylish with SO much room for everything you need!                               https://milkiandco.com/

 

FOR THE ROOM

  • Change table – My husband is a builder and made ours with beautiful written carving to our first born. Lots of storage under it in baskets which is super easy!
  • Feeding chair- I LOVED having a feeding chair in the room, even if bubs slept in our room at night, they have always slept in their during the day, so a chair is great for those quiet time feeds (especially with siblings running around!) – we got one from Vinnies for $5 and redid it for about $55.
  • Lamp – something soft dimmed is great!
  • Baby mobile for above the bed- now this can be great once they are a bit bigger and you want them to just chill in bed until they fall asleep… though I found my girls stare for ages at them and kept them awake for too long! So I moved it above the change table the first 2 months.
  • Nappy bin- For my first two girls I had a smell proof nappy bin, which was amazing! We sold that years ago, so this time round we may just have a normal small bin, and empty it more often as our bin outside is easily accessible.
  • Laundry basket- for dirty washing. 
  • ALL THE PRETTIES!!! Style and decorate! ENJOY.

 

FOR MUM

  • Breast pads – Washable or disposable, it really depends on your flow and what you like. Im going to be stocking both this time. We have some gorgeous washable ones from MISS MAE STUDIO.
  • Maternity singlets/bras - I loved BONDS ones best personally! 
  • Nipple cream – Lansinol is your BEST FRIEND - mostly as a protective, if you do get cracked nipples then finding a good healing nipple cream is ideal (mine unfortunately got so bad I needed prescribed cream)- but I’ve been recommended MooGoo MudderUdder balm. 
  • Nipple shields (IF YOU NEED)- I needed these badly! Unforuntately I had (yes had…my whole life, until a few months after having myla… now im normal hahaha) inverted nipples, so my nipples were so severely crackes, cut and blistered my midwife had never seen it so bad before. I was pumping bloody milk every feed…which meant baby…wee and poop was red tinged… fun.
  • Movicol (stool softener) – YEP we are going there. Vaginal birth, or C section… your first #2 is going to be TERRIFYING… even if its not that bad… youll be a bit scared, so this helps so much!!!!
  • Ural – I have just been told this trick! Take some and it helps with the after birth STING when you wee each time…and the sting can be… yeh BAD.
  • Biodegradable wipes- Speaking of sting… Heres a little tip for you… toilet paper after giving birth=Not pleasant. So I picked up some bamboo towelettes (needs to be biodegradable and flushable) and I would have a spray bottle next to the toilet and spray my wipes each time..to wipe. Another option is spraying ‘there’ while doing a wee… it really does help!!
  • Maternity pads/underwear/adult nappies! – so heres one for you to decide. Ive always picked up some big ugly nanna undies from big w, and used maternity pads for after birth… they weren’t comfortable personally and always bunched up…plus I felt very unclean and gross. I have recently posted about ‘Adult Nappies’ and had some amazing feedback FLOOD my messages. Countless messages about how great they are. Comfortable, easy to dispose of and leak proof! SO… yes I'm going to be packing both! Ive been told TENA and also DEPEND are both easy brands from woolworths you can pick up! 

 

https://www.babybunting.com.au/media/doc/checklist.pdf

Read more

Baby buy list

Posted by Janelle Spies on

Baby buy list

- Janelle, My little Joy

 
A little list in preparation for baby on the way. This is my own personal list and why I recommend certain products, because thats what has worked for me with my first two babes. All are personal preference as to what brand or style you may like. At this stage I have not included clothing in this list :) I will attach a few 'check lists' I have found helpful on some websites which may help you.  

For the baby: 

Wraps/swaddles

  • I loved having swaddles, even if your baby doesn’t like to be swaddled, they are great for extra blankets (and light weight ones too!), pram/capsule covers, feeding covers (if you prefer to cover up a little) and they are also great to put down and lay baby on (on the couch, playmats, beds etc…).
  • I also loved BLACK swaddles to cover up the pram and give a little bit of black out darkness for bub! I grabbed some from baby bunting.

Sleep suits

  • I personally prefer the ‘love to dream’ sleep swaddles. I found its great for the baby to have their hands up next to their face to self soothe and have a little wriggle, while still feeling ‘secure’. For Myla we used other types of grow suits that were more like ‘cocoons’, but she would always wriggle her fingers out the top (cute…just not as practical).

                            .      

https://lovetodream.com.au/swaddle-up-original/

  Baby Comforter

  • This is completely preference. These are the 2 I have used previously – Mylas was a bamboo blankey/teddy which felt AMAZING, but not dummy attachment. Azaleas was a Kippins flamingo which was great for dummy attachment. This baby we are trying a new one from Willing Barkis (over in Ireland) and I'm pretty excited for it to arrive!!!

http://willingbarkis.com/

Baby carrier 

I have used a few carriers in my parenting over the years. I am PERSONALLY not a major 'baby wearer' as I am a very busy person and I like to have my space when getting things done. Thankfully my bubs have been great sleepers and allowed this for me. The carriers I have used and loved are:

  • Ergo sport (qld is super hot! so this fabric was great for me!) The ERGO allowed me to wear baby on my front facing inwards or outwards! I picked this one up from gumtree for about $60 second hand. 
  • Stretchy Wrap - great for the earlier months. They can be fiddly to work out but once you do they are amazing! So many beautiful ones online too! 

 

 Baby Camera

  • I never wanted to be a ‘helicopter mama’ and hover over my child while they slept, but Myla became a tummy sleeper after a few weeks and a video monitor gave me piece of mind! We used a Uniden one, but had a lot of trouble with the one we had. This baby we have the Lollipop Baby Camera, which is both stylish and practical and runs through your phone which is soo great – meaning hubby can watch too and we can also have a little ‘nanny spy camera’ when we go out later on down the track (hehe a bit sneaky but why not!)

https://www.lollipop.camera/

Baby breathing/heart monitor

  • Another ‘helicopter’ moment I have is this one! Same again- because Myla was a tummy sleeper, this gave me piece of mind! Basically it sounds an alarm if baby stops breathing or is having issues of the same sort. We used the Angelcare one.

https://www.catch.com.au/product/angelcare-deluxe-movement-sound-monitor-ac401-2pu-378465/?offer_id=111148&&iv_=__iv_p_1_a_876727627_g_43047373654_c_205608443694_k__m__w_aud-476032970597:pla-367500626599_n_g_d_c_v__l__t__r_1o1_x_pla_y_11248162_f_online_o_378465_z_AU_i_en_j_367500626599_s__e__h_9068962_ii__vi__&gclid=CjwKCAjw_b3cBRByEiwAdG8WqgFbzqgdro51nELe725xKyf3rzJ8opfUO3yCxKTB1O1V3Aw3AneGURoCulYQAvD_BwE

Terry towelling / burp cloths

  • I am HUGE on this one! We bought quite a few packs (maybe had 30 in total in the end as I was given heaps of personalised ones at my baby shower also!- I would say 15-20 is fine). These are used mostly for ‘spew rags’ pretty much! Chuck them under bubs head at night, on the playmat/bouncer/rocker/FLOOR CUSHION ;p, over your shoulder, under baby when burping… seriously… AMAZING. 

https://www.kmart.com.au/product/cotton-terry-nappies---pack-of-12/887804?gclid=CjwKCAjw_b3cBRByEiwAdG8WqijfNmZ3vSV67i7CYaBwfTcmC3uEee2i938YJApiKKvfmx0iXKIKUxoCHrAQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds&dclid=CIjWseSmo90CFcwcKgod0fwJTQ

Other things for baby

  • Bassinet/cot sheets and blankets depending on season.
  • Bassinet/cot mattress protectors - MUST 
  • Bath cloths (just some little ones from kmart are great!)
  • Bath lounge/seat - great for bub to lay in shallow water so you can wash easily. 
  • Change mat (portable ones for the nappy bag-either washable or disposable are great!)
  • Nappy bags (put those stinky ones in and shut them tight!)
  • Nappies and wipes- all personal preference – we are going to try THANKYOU brand this time round! Ill let you know how I go!
  • Dummy/Dummy chain- If you choose to go down this line, its another personal preference- we used Avent for Myla, and the old style white Dummy for Azalea- which we LOVED-big teat, easy to find and stayed in her mouth easy. They have been discontinued that exact style, but now have come out as a stylish cute version called BIBS dummy. Many online stores stock them now!
  • Portable cot- great when going to friends houses and holidays! 
  • Thermometer – we had one where you scan it over the forehead- easiest way to check a newborns temp! Loved it.
  • Pram fan – for hot summer months!
  • Car shades + car mirror
  • Baby Hair and Nail kit
  • Sound machine – some white noise is great! We have a Gro company Owl who plays soft white noise and music, but our baby monitor also plays music.

 Products:

  • Nappy rash cream
  • Bath wash/shampoos etc
  • Massage oil
  • Gripewater/infants friend (for wind… a few drops and it helps their tummy settle during feeds

BOTTLES

  • This one is hard- as some may breastfeed exclusively. I chose to have a few bottles on hand JUST in case- Which came in handy very quickly as we had major feeding issues. The bottles we loved most were Tommee Tippee and Medela. 

Big ticket items: 

I always recommend looking up second hand items on gumtree or marketplace for some of the big ticket items! You can pick up a bargain. 

  • Nappy bin- For my first two girls I had a smell proof nappy bin, which was amazing! We sold that years ago, so this time round we may just have a normal small bin, and empty it more often as our bin outside is easily accessible.Cot
  • Bassinet – this is complete preference, I personally love having a little bassinet in our room near my bed so I can get up to baby at night easier. They usually stay in the bassinet for around 10-16 weeks depending on your babys growth.
  • Play mat – just something nice for bubs to lay on and even lay under (having a playgym over them is good too!)
  • Bouncer/rocker – I personally LOVE a rocker that rocks from side to side as a lot of babies tend to not enjoy front and back rocking (some don’t mind at all- Myla was fine, Azalea didn’t like front to back rocking). We decided to get a NUNA CURV this time round. We picked up a second hand one for $130 on gumtree (brand new they are around $380).              https://www.nuna.eu/en/leaf
  • BIG GIANT CUSHION… say maybe like a round floor cushion ;p = So this is the reason I started my business- I wanted something both my girls could enjoy. A cushion for Myla to sit and read books, but also a cushion my baby could snuggle down into and have cat naps or be happy laying around… Babies feel super snug in the floor cushions…so this is obviously a MUST on my own list.                                      https://www.mylittlejoy.com.au/collections/the-floor-cushion

  • Pram- Total preference for this one! I am a pram snob! I have been through 4 prams! (Rozibaby, strider compact, icandy and now a baby jogger Versa). Im super happy with my versa- its light, easy to move around and fold up and has all the extras I need! Unfortunately though, they are discontinued- so only second hand ones for this one!
  • Car seats vs capsules – I decided to have both. I borrowed a friends capsule, but now I have my own. I found they are great for non disturbance and hook into the pram too! They can last anywhere from 12weeks-10 months (roughly…my guess…)- my girls stayed in theirs for 7 months!
  • Breast pump- This is really something best to put money aside and wait to buy once you have bubs. I ended up borrowing a friends when desperate and I had so many issues I went a bought a double swing medela pump – Which I HIGHLY recommend if you pump often!
  • Nappy handbag! - I have been through too many! You want one that fits everything but isnt a suitcase! I have two which I love: Mimco nappy bag- its big but its got great room AND my new favourite is Milki.co Nappy bag- this is the LUXURY handbag! Perfectly sized and sooo perfectly stylish with SO much room for everything you need!                               https://milkiandco.com/

 

FOR THE ROOM

  • Change table – My husband is a builder and made ours with beautiful written carving to our first born. Lots of storage under it in baskets which is super easy!
  • Feeding chair- I LOVED having a feeding chair in the room, even if bubs slept in our room at night, they have always slept in their during the day, so a chair is great for those quiet time feeds (especially with siblings running around!) – we got one from Vinnies for $5 and redid it for about $55.
  • Lamp – something soft dimmed is great!
  • Baby mobile for above the bed- now this can be great once they are a bit bigger and you want them to just chill in bed until they fall asleep… though I found my girls stare for ages at them and kept them awake for too long! So I moved it above the change table the first 2 months.
  • Nappy bin- For my first two girls I had a smell proof nappy bin, which was amazing! We sold that years ago, so this time round we may just have a normal small bin, and empty it more often as our bin outside is easily accessible.
  • Laundry basket- for dirty washing. 
  • ALL THE PRETTIES!!! Style and decorate! ENJOY.

 

FOR MUM

  • Breast pads – Washable or disposable, it really depends on your flow and what you like. Im going to be stocking both this time. We have some gorgeous washable ones from MISS MAE STUDIO.
  • Maternity singlets/bras - I loved BONDS ones best personally! 
  • Nipple cream – Lansinol is your BEST FRIEND - mostly as a protective, if you do get cracked nipples then finding a good healing nipple cream is ideal (mine unfortunately got so bad I needed prescribed cream)- but I’ve been recommended MooGoo MudderUdder balm. 
  • Nipple shields (IF YOU NEED)- I needed these badly! Unforuntately I had (yes had…my whole life, until a few months after having myla… now im normal hahaha) inverted nipples, so my nipples were so severely crackes, cut and blistered my midwife had never seen it so bad before. I was pumping bloody milk every feed…which meant baby…wee and poop was red tinged… fun.
  • Movicol (stool softener) – YEP we are going there. Vaginal birth, or C section… your first #2 is going to be TERRIFYING… even if its not that bad… youll be a bit scared, so this helps so much!!!!
  • Ural – I have just been told this trick! Take some and it helps with the after birth STING when you wee each time…and the sting can be… yeh BAD.
  • Biodegradable wipes- Speaking of sting… Heres a little tip for you… toilet paper after giving birth=Not pleasant. So I picked up some bamboo towelettes (needs to be biodegradable and flushable) and I would have a spray bottle next to the toilet and spray my wipes each time..to wipe. Another option is spraying ‘there’ while doing a wee… it really does help!!
  • Maternity pads/underwear/adult nappies! – so heres one for you to decide. Ive always picked up some big ugly nanna undies from big w, and used maternity pads for after birth… they weren’t comfortable personally and always bunched up…plus I felt very unclean and gross. I have recently posted about ‘Adult Nappies’ and had some amazing feedback FLOOD my messages. Countless messages about how great they are. Comfortable, easy to dispose of and leak proof! SO… yes I'm going to be packing both! Ive been told TENA and also DEPEND are both easy brands from woolworths you can pick up! 

 

https://www.babybunting.com.au/media/doc/checklist.pdf

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A Mothers Hope: Part Eleven - Shared Hope

Posted by Susie Bartlett on

Many people have stories of trials and tribulations in their life..... They are hidden in their hearts and rarely surface. I am blessed to have been able to share this testimony with you.
.
1 Peter 3:15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.
.
Life after the Alpha Interferon arrived is a bit of a blur now. I am sure that there were weekly visits to the hospital, appointments with specialists and the trials of fitting into the routine back home with the other children. I think it was about four weeks later that the doctors told us that the drug seemed to be working and the birthmarks were shrinking. Graphs, photos, Catscans and charts had been recorded since Janelle's first arrival in casualty at three weeks old. Janelle was nearly eight months old when we visited the hospital and I was shown these records. The graph is what I recall the most, it showed an rapid incline of growth, then slowed down steadily levelling out, then had the decline after the Interferon. I was fascinated that the levelling out had started soon after the time our church had fasted and prayed. Had God heard our cries and slowed, then stopped the growth back then? I believe He did. As the Hemangiomas decreased, Janelle was featured in medical magazines, articles and discussed at conferences around the world. One of those articles I still have.
Being hospitalized and having medical procedures never seemed to have an adverse effect on her early years and social skills, in fact I think it was the opposite. As a toddler Janelle would gravitate to men, often climbing up onto strangers laps or asking men to pick her up before I could stop her. I remember one visit to the local doctors surgery. In a waiting room full of children and mothers, Janelle headed straight to the corner, bypassing the toys and climbed up on an old gentlemen's lap. I believe her love of men was because of all the doctors attention she had received over those months in hospital.
Slowly her Hemangiomas shrunk over the coming months, she may have been injected for six or seven months before they felt they had it under control. Gradually some of my fears were dissolving. Being at home now, I was under the impression that our small town of Healesville knew about Janelle's condition, but when she was eighteen months old, I was in for a rude shock. While shopping in a local gift store, Janelle was playing on some stairs, just three steps that dropped to a separate level. The lady working there was quick to tell me to remove my child from the stairs, as she looked like she had already been hurt. The accusing tone in her voice indicated that she believed that I had hurt Janelle. I left the shop and went straight down the road to the local newspaper, where I asked them if they would do an article on Janelle to clear up any misconceptions. They had asked me to print Janelle's story when she was six months old, but because we didn't know if Janelle would live, I declined. So they agreed to do the story and Janelle was featured in the local newspaper and also the New Idea magazine..... I still have both the articles.
Over the next 3-4 years we still visited the hospital regularly and Janelle had only one operation to lower her eye so it was in line with her good eye. All the talk of extensive plastic surgery never eventuated and basically as Janelle got older it got harder to see that she had ever been so disfigured at all. I think the greatest sign God gave me that He had always been in control over the time of Janelle's illness, was her name. I mentioned in chapter one that her name was seen in the back of a newspaper, an unusual name, hardly ever heard in Melbourne. We three years later I was in a Christian Store and saw a book on the shelf of baby's names. I found the name Janelle and looked up her scripture.
Psalm 138:8
The LORD will perfect that which concerns me: thy mercy, O LORD, endureth for ever: forsake not the works of thine own hands.
 
When I saw this I cried, standing right there in the store. God knew that if Janelle grew up still with the hemangiomas, it would concern her. It would affect her life greatly to look like that. Would she have ever married and had her beautiful family? However God did not forsake the works of His hands.... He did not forsake my precious little baby girl... Janelle Kylie Bartlett! ......My beautiful blessing...... My hope ❤️
 
.
.
.
A big thank you to my amazing Mother, who opened her heart to re live the memories of my childhood to share this journey. I have learnt so much more about myself and also about you and what we went through. I truly believe this was the start to the amazing relationship we have together. You're my best friend, through thick and thin. I love you Mama. 
xx Janelle
 
Thank you everyone for coming into my life and following along on this journey we have shared. I appreciate all the lovely messages I have recieved in response to both my story shared via Instagram, and this blog. xx
 
 

Read more

A Mothers Hope: Part Eleven - Shared Hope

Posted by Susie Bartlett on

Many people have stories of trials and tribulations in their life..... They are hidden in their hearts and rarely surface. I am blessed to have been able to share this testimony with you.
.
1 Peter 3:15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.
.
Life after the Alpha Interferon arrived is a bit of a blur now. I am sure that there were weekly visits to the hospital, appointments with specialists and the trials of fitting into the routine back home with the other children. I think it was about four weeks later that the doctors told us that the drug seemed to be working and the birthmarks were shrinking. Graphs, photos, Catscans and charts had been recorded since Janelle's first arrival in casualty at three weeks old. Janelle was nearly eight months old when we visited the hospital and I was shown these records. The graph is what I recall the most, it showed an rapid incline of growth, then slowed down steadily levelling out, then had the decline after the Interferon. I was fascinated that the levelling out had started soon after the time our church had fasted and prayed. Had God heard our cries and slowed, then stopped the growth back then? I believe He did. As the Hemangiomas decreased, Janelle was featured in medical magazines, articles and discussed at conferences around the world. One of those articles I still have.
Being hospitalized and having medical procedures never seemed to have an adverse effect on her early years and social skills, in fact I think it was the opposite. As a toddler Janelle would gravitate to men, often climbing up onto strangers laps or asking men to pick her up before I could stop her. I remember one visit to the local doctors surgery. In a waiting room full of children and mothers, Janelle headed straight to the corner, bypassing the toys and climbed up on an old gentlemen's lap. I believe her love of men was because of all the doctors attention she had received over those months in hospital.
Slowly her Hemangiomas shrunk over the coming months, she may have been injected for six or seven months before they felt they had it under control. Gradually some of my fears were dissolving. Being at home now, I was under the impression that our small town of Healesville knew about Janelle's condition, but when she was eighteen months old, I was in for a rude shock. While shopping in a local gift store, Janelle was playing on some stairs, just three steps that dropped to a separate level. The lady working there was quick to tell me to remove my child from the stairs, as she looked like she had already been hurt. The accusing tone in her voice indicated that she believed that I had hurt Janelle. I left the shop and went straight down the road to the local newspaper, where I asked them if they would do an article on Janelle to clear up any misconceptions. They had asked me to print Janelle's story when she was six months old, but because we didn't know if Janelle would live, I declined. So they agreed to do the story and Janelle was featured in the local newspaper and also the New Idea magazine..... I still have both the articles.
Over the next 3-4 years we still visited the hospital regularly and Janelle had only one operation to lower her eye so it was in line with her good eye. All the talk of extensive plastic surgery never eventuated and basically as Janelle got older it got harder to see that she had ever been so disfigured at all. I think the greatest sign God gave me that He had always been in control over the time of Janelle's illness, was her name. I mentioned in chapter one that her name was seen in the back of a newspaper, an unusual name, hardly ever heard in Melbourne. We three years later I was in a Christian Store and saw a book on the shelf of baby's names. I found the name Janelle and looked up her scripture.
Psalm 138:8
The LORD will perfect that which concerns me: thy mercy, O LORD, endureth for ever: forsake not the works of thine own hands.
 
When I saw this I cried, standing right there in the store. God knew that if Janelle grew up still with the hemangiomas, it would concern her. It would affect her life greatly to look like that. Would she have ever married and had her beautiful family? However God did not forsake the works of His hands.... He did not forsake my precious little baby girl... Janelle Kylie Bartlett! ......My beautiful blessing...... My hope ❤️
 
.
.
.
A big thank you to my amazing Mother, who opened her heart to re live the memories of my childhood to share this journey. I have learnt so much more about myself and also about you and what we went through. I truly believe this was the start to the amazing relationship we have together. You're my best friend, through thick and thin. I love you Mama. 
xx Janelle
 
Thank you everyone for coming into my life and following along on this journey we have shared. I appreciate all the lovely messages I have recieved in response to both my story shared via Instagram, and this blog. xx
 
 

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A Mothers Hope: PART TEN - Rebuilding Hope

Posted by Susie Bartlett on

They say patience is a virtue, yet it is definitely not one of my better qualities. I wanted things to happen in my timing but God had prearranged everything to His timing.
.
Psalm 27:14 Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord.
.
Janelle's first few days being injected with an experimental drug called Alpha Interferon, were nerve wracking to say the least. 'Peace ' is such a weird emotion, it can be with you one minute, bathing you in warmth and positive thoughts and then can be snatched away the next minute, leaving behind doubt and a terrible hollow feeling. Those feelings actually stayed with me for many years as not only were there immediate dangers with using this drug, but the long term effects were also not known. Janelle was only the sixth child in the world to try it and a very rare case with her hemangiomas. It wasn't like I could talk to twenty other parents and compare notes. I did however somehow get in contact with a mother of a boy called Daniel, they lived in Sydney. He had spent the first five years of his life on what she called 'the wall'. Basically this was in ICU hooked up to equipment that kept him alive. He had massive hemangiomas that were threatening his vital organs in his abdomen. Daniels mother wrote a book entitled 'Daniel' and she would encourage me occasionally on the phone during our dark days at the hospital. A few years later I was saddened to find out that the hemangioma in Daniels abdominal area eventually took his life. He was 14 and fell over at a birthday party, somehow this triggered the birthmarks to grow again and from memory might have crushed his lungs. I asked our doctors if this could happen to Janelle also and they said that there are lots of different types of birthmarks and hopefully we didn't have the same type.

However that fear hovered over me and for a long time I felt like I had only been blessed with Janelle for a certain amount of years and she would pass away during her childhood. It was an unwarranted fear but sometimes it was hard to shake, I suppose going through what we did had to leave a person with some aftermath. In that first week, after making sure that Janelle was having no adverse effects, I had to learn how to inject her before we could go home. A nurse turned up at the ward one morning with an orange, she had multiple spare needles and we sat down to a lesson in inter-muscular administration of a drug. First I had to learn to draw the needle up with water and tap the needle to expel air bubbles. Then at the right angle, I had to insert the needle into the orange, drawback the syringe to make sure I wasn't in a pretend vein and then slowly squirt the water into the orange. I had to practice lots that day because the following morning I would have to inject Janelle. To this day I am quite competent with injecting into the muscle and I can even do it intravenously and I sometimes need to apply this to horses. However I really don't like it because of the memories that are attached.
I can't remember the first time I injected Janelle, but I do recall it the drug had to be kept cold and administered at the same time everyday. Sometimes this meant that I had to take it with me in an Esky. Once of my most vivid memories was injecting her each week at Pastor Jocie's house during women's bible study. We would lay her on the kitchen bench and Jocie would hold her leg still. The top of the thigh was the best place to inject as they were chubby. Janelle was now over six months and quite aware of the routine that happened daily, she would often cry knowing what was about to take place. For a month or two they increased the Alpha Interferon to twice a day to really attack the growth. I suppose even now some of those women at that bible study would remember helping with Janelle. Although I often felt alone in that hospital, I knew I wasn't. There was our family, friends, church and community all praying for our little baby to get better. Now it was just a matter of time......waiting to see.
READ THE FINAL CHAPTER (11) NOW 

Read more

A Mothers Hope: PART TEN - Rebuilding Hope

Posted by Susie Bartlett on

They say patience is a virtue, yet it is definitely not one of my better qualities. I wanted things to happen in my timing but God had prearranged everything to His timing.
.
Psalm 27:14 Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord.
.
Janelle's first few days being injected with an experimental drug called Alpha Interferon, were nerve wracking to say the least. 'Peace ' is such a weird emotion, it can be with you one minute, bathing you in warmth and positive thoughts and then can be snatched away the next minute, leaving behind doubt and a terrible hollow feeling. Those feelings actually stayed with me for many years as not only were there immediate dangers with using this drug, but the long term effects were also not known. Janelle was only the sixth child in the world to try it and a very rare case with her hemangiomas. It wasn't like I could talk to twenty other parents and compare notes. I did however somehow get in contact with a mother of a boy called Daniel, they lived in Sydney. He had spent the first five years of his life on what she called 'the wall'. Basically this was in ICU hooked up to equipment that kept him alive. He had massive hemangiomas that were threatening his vital organs in his abdomen. Daniels mother wrote a book entitled 'Daniel' and she would encourage me occasionally on the phone during our dark days at the hospital. A few years later I was saddened to find out that the hemangioma in Daniels abdominal area eventually took his life. He was 14 and fell over at a birthday party, somehow this triggered the birthmarks to grow again and from memory might have crushed his lungs. I asked our doctors if this could happen to Janelle also and they said that there are lots of different types of birthmarks and hopefully we didn't have the same type.

However that fear hovered over me and for a long time I felt like I had only been blessed with Janelle for a certain amount of years and she would pass away during her childhood. It was an unwarranted fear but sometimes it was hard to shake, I suppose going through what we did had to leave a person with some aftermath. In that first week, after making sure that Janelle was having no adverse effects, I had to learn how to inject her before we could go home. A nurse turned up at the ward one morning with an orange, she had multiple spare needles and we sat down to a lesson in inter-muscular administration of a drug. First I had to learn to draw the needle up with water and tap the needle to expel air bubbles. Then at the right angle, I had to insert the needle into the orange, drawback the syringe to make sure I wasn't in a pretend vein and then slowly squirt the water into the orange. I had to practice lots that day because the following morning I would have to inject Janelle. To this day I am quite competent with injecting into the muscle and I can even do it intravenously and I sometimes need to apply this to horses. However I really don't like it because of the memories that are attached.
I can't remember the first time I injected Janelle, but I do recall it the drug had to be kept cold and administered at the same time everyday. Sometimes this meant that I had to take it with me in an Esky. Once of my most vivid memories was injecting her each week at Pastor Jocie's house during women's bible study. We would lay her on the kitchen bench and Jocie would hold her leg still. The top of the thigh was the best place to inject as they were chubby. Janelle was now over six months and quite aware of the routine that happened daily, she would often cry knowing what was about to take place. For a month or two they increased the Alpha Interferon to twice a day to really attack the growth. I suppose even now some of those women at that bible study would remember helping with Janelle. Although I often felt alone in that hospital, I knew I wasn't. There was our family, friends, church and community all praying for our little baby to get better. Now it was just a matter of time......waiting to see.
READ THE FINAL CHAPTER (11) NOW 

Read more


A Mothers Hope: PART NINE - A Vial of Hope

Posted by Susie Bartlett on

There is always a battle between believing for a miracle and having fear that you are setting yourself up for disappointment..... the Alpha Interferon was one or the other, there was no in-between.
.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
.
Life was now a sequence of routines because that is how a hospital functions. Wake up at a set time, breakfast, doctors rounds, bath Janelle, go for a walk, lunch, read a magazine, have a cup of tea, do some knitting, maybe another walk, doctors rounds again, dinner and then settle in for the night. Janelle being life threatened, rarely got to go home and I didn't get to see the other children much. Occasionally I would have them with me for a few days and stay across the road at Ronald McDonald House at night but keeping them amused in the confines of a hospital ward and looking after a sick baby was very difficult, so it didn't happen much.
With the hope of this experimental drug on the way, I had come to a peace about Janelle's life and my newly found relationship with God.  I clearly remember praying to Him and saying that no matter if Janelle lived or died, I would be grateful for the time I had with her and would not blame Him for taking her from me. I believe sometimes to find peace you have to let go. This was not defeat by any means, but an acceptance that dissolved the constant fear that plagued me. Those fears were not only about her passing away but also about what she would look like if she lived. People can be so cruel to those that look different, how disfigured would she be in her teenage years? Plastic surgeons would occasionally visit us on the ward and I recall a specialist one day telling me that Janelle would probably need quite significant plastic surgery. This would involve cutting her around the hairline from one ear to the other. They would then peel down her face to be able to make the corrections. Being told that gave me hope and reassurance that they could help her appearance in the future but the procedure terrified me at the same time.
Doctors were also very concerned about Janelle's eyesight. Her right eye was now protruding about three centimetres from her face (photo of XRAY shows distance the eye was) and the optic nerve was overstretched the same distance. They weren't even sure how much sight she had left in that eye.
Babies under the age of six months learn to use both eyes in unison, but with the Hemangioma altering her eye function, doctors weren't sure if this was happening. So at least once a day, I had to patch Janelle's good eye so as to make her use her bad eye and strengthen it. This also involved putting her arms in tiny splints that fastened with velcro. This was because Janelle quickly learnt to reach up and pull her patch off, so the splints stopped that because she couldn't bend her elbows. Although this whole routine in time showed us that there probably wasn't much sight there, due to the fact that Janelle would quickly fall asleep.... after all, she was bored not seeing anything. 
To this day Janelle is legally blind in her right eye and it was a blessing that her brain never learnt to use both eyes in unison and therefore it was programmed to ignore what her right eye is seeing. I am also grateful that Janelle was too young to remember anything they did to her as a lot of it would have been painful.
Janelle's breathing was getting more laboured and there was a risk that she was not getting enough oxygen to the brain. This would cause brain cells to die and leave her disabled. They needed to know if she needed to be on oxygen full time or have a tracheotomy. To test this they decided to stick a tiny camera up her nose and partly down her throat. It took several attempts to get it in and Janelle screamed as it would have been painful. I hated agreeing to put her through procedures that caused her pain, she had enough to deal with and didn't need more. I can't recall how long the Alpha Interferon took to get to Australia, but finally it arrived. A day or so was taken to prepare a plan to administer it, then we were ready to roll! The first time they injected her with it was totally new territory for the doctors. A nurse sat by Janelle's cot to monitor any reactions..... this moment truly could have swung either way.....joy or devastation!
READ PART 10 HERE

Read more

A Mothers Hope: PART NINE - A Vial of Hope

Posted by Susie Bartlett on

There is always a battle between believing for a miracle and having fear that you are setting yourself up for disappointment..... the Alpha Interferon was one or the other, there was no in-between.
.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
.
Life was now a sequence of routines because that is how a hospital functions. Wake up at a set time, breakfast, doctors rounds, bath Janelle, go for a walk, lunch, read a magazine, have a cup of tea, do some knitting, maybe another walk, doctors rounds again, dinner and then settle in for the night. Janelle being life threatened, rarely got to go home and I didn't get to see the other children much. Occasionally I would have them with me for a few days and stay across the road at Ronald McDonald House at night but keeping them amused in the confines of a hospital ward and looking after a sick baby was very difficult, so it didn't happen much.
With the hope of this experimental drug on the way, I had come to a peace about Janelle's life and my newly found relationship with God.  I clearly remember praying to Him and saying that no matter if Janelle lived or died, I would be grateful for the time I had with her and would not blame Him for taking her from me. I believe sometimes to find peace you have to let go. This was not defeat by any means, but an acceptance that dissolved the constant fear that plagued me. Those fears were not only about her passing away but also about what she would look like if she lived. People can be so cruel to those that look different, how disfigured would she be in her teenage years? Plastic surgeons would occasionally visit us on the ward and I recall a specialist one day telling me that Janelle would probably need quite significant plastic surgery. This would involve cutting her around the hairline from one ear to the other. They would then peel down her face to be able to make the corrections. Being told that gave me hope and reassurance that they could help her appearance in the future but the procedure terrified me at the same time.
Doctors were also very concerned about Janelle's eyesight. Her right eye was now protruding about three centimetres from her face (photo of XRAY shows distance the eye was) and the optic nerve was overstretched the same distance. They weren't even sure how much sight she had left in that eye.
Babies under the age of six months learn to use both eyes in unison, but with the Hemangioma altering her eye function, doctors weren't sure if this was happening. So at least once a day, I had to patch Janelle's good eye so as to make her use her bad eye and strengthen it. This also involved putting her arms in tiny splints that fastened with velcro. This was because Janelle quickly learnt to reach up and pull her patch off, so the splints stopped that because she couldn't bend her elbows. Although this whole routine in time showed us that there probably wasn't much sight there, due to the fact that Janelle would quickly fall asleep.... after all, she was bored not seeing anything. 
To this day Janelle is legally blind in her right eye and it was a blessing that her brain never learnt to use both eyes in unison and therefore it was programmed to ignore what her right eye is seeing. I am also grateful that Janelle was too young to remember anything they did to her as a lot of it would have been painful.
Janelle's breathing was getting more laboured and there was a risk that she was not getting enough oxygen to the brain. This would cause brain cells to die and leave her disabled. They needed to know if she needed to be on oxygen full time or have a tracheotomy. To test this they decided to stick a tiny camera up her nose and partly down her throat. It took several attempts to get it in and Janelle screamed as it would have been painful. I hated agreeing to put her through procedures that caused her pain, she had enough to deal with and didn't need more. I can't recall how long the Alpha Interferon took to get to Australia, but finally it arrived. A day or so was taken to prepare a plan to administer it, then we were ready to roll! The first time they injected her with it was totally new territory for the doctors. A nurse sat by Janelle's cot to monitor any reactions..... this moment truly could have swung either way.....joy or devastation!
READ PART 10 HERE

Read more