Friday, October 24, 2014

Weekend Bloggy Reading :: Link Up!

TGIF! Welcome to my Weekend Bloggy Reading link party. Fridays are fun because this is the day of the week where other bloggers stop by to link up their best post of the week here at Serenity Now, and readers get to browse tons of fun project ideas. If you're new here, don't forget to "Follow" or subscribe so you don't miss future parties and projects!

*Please be sure to read my guidelines before you add a link--I've had to bypass so many great projects lately because they didn't include a link back to my blog in the post!

This party is a great place to showcase your very best post of the week (home decor, crafts, party ideas, recipes, DIY, tips and tricks, etc.) and to see what else is out there.

Did you miss this week's features or the newest post in my Mommy's Must Haves series, First Trimester Pregnancy Must Haves?




Time to link up your best post of the week!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

First Trimester Pregnancy Must Haves {Mommy's Must Haves series}


Welcome, moms, moms-to-be, and moms who want to share this series with their friends. (haha) Today brings the first post in my new series, Mommy's Must Haves...all about the essentials for pregnancy and baby. Written by a mom of three on a budget!


If you just found out you're expecting, congratulations. This is such an exciting (and emotional!) journey you're embarking on. Trust me, now's the time to start planning and preparing for your new arrival. Don't ask me how I know, but it stinks to wait until the last minute. {wink}

If you're planning and hoping to be pregnant soon, welcome to you too! It's a great idea to make healthy choices and plans before you 

As I mentioned in the series opener, every single pregnancy is different! You may have morning (or afternoon, or night) sickness; you may not. You might go up three bra sizes; you might get away with just wearing something stretchy. What worked for me might not work for you, so take my tips with a grain of salt and be prepared to try some other ideas!

You really don't need much for your first trimester, but here are some items that I found to be helpful over the course of my three pregnancies!



1. Saltines
I had awful, terrible nausea with all three of my pregnancies. All day, all afternoon, and all evening until I went to bed. I was the most tired with baby #3, probably due to the fact that I was exhausted from the pregnancy...plus taking care of my two other kiddos. Saltines were something I could nibble on without feeling like I was going to hurl...right away.

You may have morning (or afternoon, or night) sickness; you may not. Find something, anything (!) you can eat without wanting to throw up. With my first baby, fresh fruit helped me feel better. Find your thing and hold onto it!

2. Water Bottle or Straw Cup
Again with the morning sickness! Sometimes the only thing that kept me from "tossing it" was taking little bitty sips of very very very cold ice water. If I felt the nausea coming on, I'd start sipping, and sometimes it would keep things at bay. Also, water is good for you.

3. Ginger Ale
I don't think the brand really matters, but sometimes Ginger Ale also helps curb the nausea...also, it's nice to be able to order something besides water when you go out to eat as a treat. (Especially since you'll be turning down margaritas for the next nine months!)

4. Ginger Pops
I'm adding these (Preggie Pops) to the list because they were recommended to me by so many friends. There wasn't much that seemed to work for me, but friends have sworn by the ginger pops! You can find them at CVS, WalMart, etc.

5. A good OB/GYN
This should be a no-brainer, but I've heard so many mom friends talk about how much they dislike their docs and end up switching when they get pregnant. Find yourself a good OB/GYN! Look for someone who is empathetic, takes the time to listen and answer your questions, and isn't pushy. Also be sure you like the staff! I've had the same OB/GYN since I got pregnant with Natalie, my oldest. Not only is my doc excellent, someone I trust (she's done all three c-sections!), but her staff is fabulous. They are kind, friendly, and don't keep me waiting!!!

6. Pregnancy Journal
I'll level with you. You probably won't have time to do this if this is not your first pregnancy. You have enough on your hands to deal with, so don't beat yourself up. If this is your first baby, a pregnancy journal can be a fun way to record your feelings, experiences, and health. My sis gave me one when I was pregnant with Natalie, and I loved it. You'll also be able to look back and compare if you have more little ones later on.

7. Prenatal Vitamins
Hopefully, you're already taking some for the folic acid. My OB/GYN prescribed some prenatal vitamins during my first two pregnancies, but they were so expensive ($50 a month with our new insurance!!) with baby #3 that I just took over-the-counter ones and never noticed a difference. Ask your doc what he/she recommends, and they probably have some great samples for you to try. 

8. Pregnancy and Baby Books
One of my top pregnancy tips? Start reading those pregnancy and baby books now, and take notes! First-time moms, I don't need to tell you. You probably already have a stack of them on your coffee table. I'll share a list of my favorite pregnancy and baby books next week, but you can also check out my list of best pregnancy websites and blogs! If this isn't your first pregnancy, it's still kind of nice to dust off those pregnancy books and brush up on your knowledge.

Other first trimester tips:

-Nighttime vitamins
If you are unable to keep anything down, try taking your vitamins at night after you brush your teeth. I found I was less likely to hurl them back up, and it also helped me to remember to take them since I was following a routine.

-Avoid caffeine
My doctor told me that small amounts of caffeine (ie. one small cup of coffee a day) are okay, but I preferred to play it safe and went cold turkey. If you're experiencing morning sickness, the thought of that coffee, mocha, Coke, etc. may make you feel gross anyways. I held off until around 20 weeks and then allowed myself a small amount after that so I wouldn't go nuts. Ask your doctor!

-Rest up!
You're growing a human being. I found this trimester to be the most utterly exhausting of all. I suppose it's kind of a shock to introduce a human into your system. When I was pregnant for the first time, I used to come home from working 9 to 5, take a 2 hour nap, and then still go to bed by 10 because I felt so awful from throwing up all day. My husband, who was possibly the least sympathetic partner ever (don't worry, he learned his lesson by subsequent pregnancies!) did not understand this at all, and frequently made me feel awful about wanting/needing extra rest. Don't let anyone give you slack for needing a nap or two! By baby #3, T was the one telling me to go put my feet up and take a load off. 

If you already have little ones at home, start enforcing a nap time or quiet time. I promise, it won't kill them. Take some time for yourself and rest up for your new baby.

What are your top must haves for the first trimester of pregnancy? Any good tips?


If you enjoyed this post or found it helpful, I hope you'll click your "Pin It" button to add this post to Pinterest, or a +1 for Google+. And I always appreciate kind comments.

Follow on Bloglovin

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Inspiring Project Ideas {link party features}

Hello! How are you today? I've got some creative inspiration for you, and today I'll be sharing some Features from the weekend link party. If you're new to the blog, I take a couple of days each week to let other bloggers showcase their project ideas here, and I take a day to feature a few of my faves. We have crafts, home decor, DIY, recipes, party ideas, organizing, tips and tricks, seasonal projects, and more!

There aren't many features this week because, to be honest, I clicked on dozens of links before I could find anyone that bothered to take the time to link back properly to the blog party...which was really discouraging.

Here are some projects that caught my eye this week:

~Craigs List Chairs Makeover via 29 Tuesdays


~Classic Vanilla Pound Cake with Salted Caramel Drizzle via Living the Gourmet

~Rustic Harvest Wreath via The Scrap Shoppe








Friday, October 17, 2014

Weekend Bloggy Reading :: Link Up!

TGIF! Welcome to my Weekend Bloggy Reading link party. Fridays are fun because this is the day of the week where other bloggers stop by to link up their best post of the week here at Serenity Now, and readers get to browse tons of fun project ideas. If you're new here, don't forget to "Follow" or subscribe so you don't miss future parties and projects!

*Please be sure to read my guidelines before you add a link--I've had to bypass so many great projects lately because they didn't include a link back to my blog in the post!

This party is a great place to showcase your very best post of the week (home decor, crafts, party ideas, recipes, DIY, tips and tricks, etc.) and to see what else is out there.

Did you miss any of this week's posts? I showed off some fab features and announced a fun new series for expecting mamas: Mommy's Must Haves {essentials for pregnancy and baby}.


**Also, the Best of the Blogosphere will be up at Centsational Girl some time this weekend! Kate and I have rounded up some fab DIY to share with you. Head over to see the BOTB after you link up here!**


Time to link up your best post of the week!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Inspiring Project Ideas {link party features}

Hello! How are you today? I've got some creative inspiration for you, and today I'll be sharing some Features from the weekend link party. If you're new to the blog, I take a couple of days each week to let other bloggers showcase their project ideas here, and I take a day to feature a few of my faves. We have crafts, home decor, DIY, recipes, party ideas, organizing, tips and tricks, seasonal projects, and more!

Here are some projects that caught my eye this week:

~How to Add Beadboard to a Rental Home's Walls via May Richer Fuller Be

~Target Inspired Painted Pears via Home for now

~Cinnamon Bun Baked Donuts via Ms. Toody Goo Shoes



Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Pregnancy and Baby Must Have Lists (a New Mom Series!)

As a mom of three, I've had the chance to test out a lot of baby gear over the past eight years... between my two girls and the boy, I've learned about what works and what doesn't. Over the the next few weeks, I'll be sharing some Pregnancy and Baby Must Have Lists...a guide to the essentials for mom and baby. If you're expecting, I hope this new series will be helpful in your planning, prepping, and nesting for a new baby.



What makes my series different?

I'm not writing this in the first weeks of that labor-newborn-sleep deprivation-fatigue. I've seen what works and what doesn't...over the months and years...and with several different kiddos! I'll absolutely be writing this series from the perspective of a mom on a budget. The items I consider to be "must haves" are genuinely useful products that are affordable!

What will this series cover?

  • Pregnancy 
  • What to Register For
  • Hospital Packing
  • Breast Feeding, Pumping, AND Formula Feeding
  • Baby Gear
  • Wardrobe for Mom
  • Wardrobe for Baby
  • Nursery
My lists will include tried and true items. My only beef with the "must have" lists I found online when expecting baby #3 was that so so so many of them were written by first time moms whose babies were a month or two old. To me, that just isn't enough time to really try out your gear and determine what will be the best fit for the long term. What worked for me might not work for you, but I hope to offer some food for thought. 


Please feel free to bookmark, Pin, or share the URL to this post. As I write each new post for the series, I will include the link here so that they are all rounded up together...easy to find and read later on!




Experienced moms, what would be your number one must-have item? Moms-to-be, what are you most excited about trying out?

And a big thank you "shout out" to my friend Erin from How to Nest for Less for creating the main graphic for this series!

If you enjoyed this post or found it helpful, I hope you'll click your "Pin It" button to add this post to Pinterest, or a +1 for Google+. And I always appreciate kind comments.

Follow on Bloglovin

Friday, October 10, 2014

Weekend Bloggy Reading :: Link Up!

Happy Friday! Welcome to my Weekend Bloggy Reading link party. Fridays are fun because this is the day of the week where other bloggers stop by to link up their best post of the week here at Serenity Now, and readers get to browse tons of fun project ideas. If you're new here, don't forget to "Follow" or subscribe so you don't miss future parties and projects!

*Please be sure to read my guidelines before you add a link--I've had to bypass so many great projects lately because they didn't include a link back to my blog in the post!

This party is a great place to showcase your very best post of the week (home decor, crafts, party ideas, recipes, DIY, tips and tricks, etc.) and to see what else is out there.

Did you miss this week's features




Time to link up your best post of the week!

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