Hi! I’m Victoria. I’m mommy to two, beautiful boys—Zion Jeremiah & Koa Zane! I’m just another mama trying to navigate through the beautiful craziness that is motherhood—the good, the bad, the ugly & the indescribable moments that make you feel “home.” I’m here to share all of that with you through my own personal experiences in motherhood as well as what you can expect (& what most won’t tell you about) when expecting. Motherhood is, after all, a lifelong journey & I’m learning every day! It’s hard but it is so worth it! I want this to be an authentic & genuine place to talk about the realness of motherhood, a place where I can share my laughter and my tears, & a place where you can say “me too” & not feel alone! I’m right there with you, friend! Let’s learn together!
THESE ARE A FEW OF MY FAVORITE (MAMA) THINGS...
Hi, mama friends! 👋🏻 Some of you have asked me about what items from my registry I have found to be most helpful. Below I have created a list of my “must have” items—things that have helped make things easier, more convenient or more enjoyable for me as a mother. Mommying is hard! These make it just a tad bit easier.
P.S. These are in no particular order.
All items are linked below for your convenience.
(I will likely continue to add to this list.)
If I’m being honest, I am obsessed with these and have a few of them around the house. One of my favorite ways to use it is as a breastfeeding cart (aka “lactation station”) where I stash all of my breastfeeding essentials so that they are within arms reach when needed—breast pump/breast pump parts, burping cloths, breast pads, nipple cream, etc. & even some galactagogues to munch on. I also have a larger cart that I use as a diaper caddy & changing station that carries Koa’s swaddles & clothes that currently fit him. I love that you can roll these around the house so you can pump or change baby wherever you want. I have collected a few of these carts from different stores but Target’s has to be my favorite & is the easiest to assemble, in my opinion.
Silicone breast pump
Not going to lie...I loathe pumping! But I loathe washing and cleaning breast pump parts even more!!! This little boob sucker has been a Godsend and is easy to use AND easy to clean...no assembly required! It has helped me collect so much milk! I used it to help give me some relief when I was engorged & to catch any letdown that would have otherwise been wasted onto a breast pad when feeding baby on the opposite breast. It has helped a ton to build my stash before I went back to work. I love this one from Haakaa! I purchased the pack containing the lid (to avoid getting dust into your milk), flower stopper (to prevent spills—I personally haven’t tried using this yet so I can’t attest to how effective it is at preventing your milk from spilling) & the suction base. I also have another silicone breast pump from NatureBond that came with a stopper & lanyard (to wrap around your neck and prevent your pump from getting knocked off/slipping off your breast while feeding baby). And a third from LaVie! I love all of them but do prefer the Haakaa the most simply because it can hold up to 5oz. while the other hold up to 4oz. Order of favorites: Haakaa, LaVie (very close second if not for size), & NatureBond.
8 ounce breastmilk storage bottles
I keep one of these within reach when using my silicone breast pump and pour in what I have collected when it starts getting full. I particularly like these Medela bottles because I have found them to have the most accurate measurements which has been very helpful when transferring my liquid gold into breastmilk storage bags (which you probably know by now never have correct measurements). They also conveniently come with caps for when you want to store them in the fridge.
Breastmilk storage bags
You know how I mentioned that most breastmilk storage bags have inaccurate measurements? This has got to be the closest to accurate I have found! They are also very durable & of good quality. Compared to other breastmilk storage bags, these are my absolute favorite for many reasons—they freeze flat, are durable, they don’t leak (at least not for me, so far), the label area is not over your milk (which is a plus for a mama with paranoia about plastic permeability), they have a double zip closure with a good amount of space in between each & they are pretty affordable! These are only sold at Target!
Baby nail clippers
If you’re a new parent, you will soon discover that trimming your newborn baby’s nails is one of the most terrifying things you will ever experience! These nail clippers have eased so much of my anxiety with it’s peek through hole to view exactly what is being clipped! Clipping my baby’s (AND my squirmy toddler’s nails) are now a breeze!
I love these large changing pads & own two of them—one to use at home anywhere around the house & one for my diaper bag to use on the go. It is large which helps keep all of baby’s parts away from germ-y tables and walls. They can easily be folded down to a convenient size for storing, easy to wipe clean & easy to carry around. There is a tab to help distinguish which side is for baby’s head and which side is for baby’s bottom & a ruler edge to measure baby’s growth.
Portable breast pump
Breastfeeding is exhausting & while you’re sitting & pumping, you will also probably be thinking about the million other things you have to do. This breast pump is as small as a TV remote control & can be worn around your neck with a lanyard so that you can pump with free hands! It comes with silicone liners for the flanges which help relieve some pain when pumping. The suction is quite strong & I find that I am able to collect more milk & in less time than most other pumps I have tried.
I know I can’t be the only one who wants to pick out my baby’s booger when I see one! But our fingers are much too big for their tiny nostrils! This is where this little booger picker comes in handy. It’s gentle and safe to use on (or should I say in) baby’s noses AND ears.
Okay, so this one can be a hit or a miss with your baby! Fortunately, both of mine took a liking to it. Unfortunately, Koa had bad acid reflux & I was hesitant to start him on medication for it because he was so young. One thing I love about this bouncer is that the seat can be repositioned so that baby can sit up or lay down. This allowed me to put Koa down after feeding and burping and sit him up comfortably while he digested his food. There are multiple versions of this bouncer & I’m sure older versions work just as well! We bought ours used & it works great! Read more about it on Amazon, linked below.
High capacity breastmilk storage bags
These breastmilk bags freeze bulky no matter how flat you can get them, they have super inaccurate measurements, the thermal dot indicators don’t work, and the tear off feature for easy pouring was a great idea but didn’t work very well. BUT, the plastic is THICK & DURABLE!!! I dropped a few bags of milk on cement when transferring my milk bricks to our deep freezer and the bags survived certain demise! That alone is a win for me!
Suction bulb syringe
I loved this simply because it was easy to clean and also because it eased my anxiety about mold growing inside of the bulb and making baby sick. I was able to take it apart for cleaning and even run it through the sterilizer if I felt it was necessary. Of course there is also the NoseFrida as well as the electric nose suctions on the market but this was still a convenient and more affordable alternative.
Besides the fact that this bottle cleaning brush set is super cute, it has all of the brushes you need to clean all of your baby’s bottle parts and breast pump parts! The only downside is that over time, the big bottle brush’s bristles tend to bunch and misshapen, but bottle brushes should be changed out every 3 months like toothbrushes anyhow so it doesn’t bother me too much! The base/“vase” is also a little tricky to take apart when you’re wanting to drain the water that collects at the bottom. Other than that, I adore this baby bottle brush set like no other!
Don’t fall for those expensive bottle sponges...this one is more cost effective and gets the job done without scratching or scuffing up your bottles or breast pump parts. Added bonus: they come in a pack of 3 and are plant-based/all natural! They can easily be stored with the Boon bottle brush set if you place it in between the cacti.