Monday, November 30, 2015

10 thoughts | for those who struggle with breastfeeding

For those who struggle with breastfeeding, I am truly sorry. I am one of those women, and I understand from the bottom of my heart how difficult it is when you and your baby have a hard time breastfeeding.

Before I get started with this post, let me first say that I in no way shame those who formula feed for one reason or another. I’ve been there, and there is no judgement here. For those of you who judge moms that formula feed, here’s to sticking my tongue out at you and saying “Shame on you.” You have no idea what another mom may be going through in her breastfeeding experience.
Okay, anyway. 

Even before I became pregnant with L, I always knew that if I had kids, I wanted to breastfeed them. It was just what I felt was going to be best for me/my children. That didn’t change throughout my whole pregnancy with L. 
I wanted to breastfeed L. That was it.

Haha. If only it were that easy.

Now, for some moms, breastfeeding is that easy. I wish I could say that I am one of those moms.

So as one of the moms that do struggle with breastfeeding, here are 10 thoughts for you to hopefully help you in your experience.

1. It's your choice. If you choose to breastfeed, then that is your choice. If you choose to pump and feed your baby breastmilk, then that is your choice. If you choose to give your baby some breastmilk and some formula, then that is your choice. If you choose to give your baby formula, then that is your choice. Whatever your choice, you are doing what is best for your baby, and that is all that matters.

2. Some days will be harder than others. With L, we have some days where I’m like, “This is it! It’s working! I love breastfeeding!” and then others where I go cry in the bathroom and yell at my boobs. (Really though.) You will get through it.

3. Don’t listen to those who don’t understand. I can’t even tell you the number of times where I’ve had a mom say, “You need to breastfeed because anything else is horrible for your baby.” No. For one, as long as you are feeding your baby, then you are doing what’s best for your baby. Two, your situation is just that. YOURS. It’s no one else’s place to judge you, and if they are, they don’t need to be a part of your experience.

4. Breastfeeding isn’t all or nothing. I’ve had this said to me so many times. Even if you give your baby one drop of breastmilk, you are giving him/her one drop of your goal! You are working towards your goal, one drop at a time!

5. Lactation consultants are incredibly helpful. L and I go to a breastfeeding support class every week that is guided by lactation consultants and it’s one of the best parts of my week because I can just relax, get help with any problem we are having, and work closer and closer to our goal. Seriously, look into seeing one. They are awesome.

6. But, you don’t have to stick with just one (lactation consultant). I saw 3 lactation consultants before I found Michelle. Michelle and I instantly clicked and I trust her with all of our breastfeeding endeavors after that. Not all lactation consultants are the one for you, so don’t settle. Find the one that you want to help you through your journey. You may be with them for a year at least, so again, don’t settle.

7. Don’t compare your experience to that of others. I haven’t met one woman yet that has had the exact experience that I have with breastfeeding. Similar, yes. Exact, no. It can be helpful to swap stories and advice, but don’t get so upset that it isn’t going how it went with “her”. Your experience is special to you and your baby. It wouldn’t be as special if everyone had the same experience.

8. Don’t beat yourself up. I need to take my own advice on this one. I’ve sat and cried, so angry with myself, thinking it was my fault that we have had the problems that we’ve had with breastfeeding. It is no ones fault, and it definitely isn’t your fault! Some people just struggle with it. Just like some people struggle with cooking. Some do and some don’t. That’s all it is! It will get better. And just like with cooking, practice makes perfect progress.

9. Don’t set expectations. If you don’t set expectations, then you won’t get your hopes up to just have them beat back down by a bad day. I go into my day saying, “If we have a good breastfeeding day, then that’s great! If not, we will try again tomorrow."

10. This too shall pass. That bad day, or bad week, will pass. You will get to that point where it will work out in one way or another and you can take a huge breath and say, “We did it.” 

{I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. -2 Timothy 4:7}

xoxo, Brandi

Friday, November 27, 2015

fav on a friday | Mother Earth Creations

Hi loves!
How was your Thanksgiving?! I hope it was absolutely wonderful!

I had such a great time yesterday! It was L’s first and I’m just so thankful for our family. It was a wonderful day filled with family, friends, food, and laughter!

This week for my FridayFavorite, I wanted to rave about my new favorite products that I have been obsessed with since I first used them: Mother Earth Creations body scrubs.

(Yes, this smells like you are rubbing Starbucks on your face. Yes, it is the best thing ever.)

I first became really interested in organic/natural products when I was pregnant with L. I became super conscious about what I was putting on my body since I was growing the cutest little baby in my body. That interest didn’t diminish after I had L because I just felt much better about my body knowing that I was cutting out so many chemicals and uneccesary ingredients that I was putting on my skin.

So when I found Mother Earth Creations, I was super excited. Her products are not only affordable, but they work wonders on any kind of skin type: dry, oily, aging, wrinkles, eczema, stretch marks, you name it! She just recently came out with a diaper rash cream as well that I’m planning on buying for L!

No matter what kind of skin you have, you should definitely check out her shop (listed down below)! I only had to use my scrub once and my face felt completely different.

(I was in no way paid or endorsed to write this blog. This is 100% my own opinions and experience.)

{Your beauty should be that of you inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. -1 Peter 3:4}

xoxo, Brandi

Sunday, November 22, 2015

walk by FAITH | not by sight

It was on my heart to write about one of my favorite Bible verses:

{“For we walk by faith, not by sight.” -2 Corinthians 5:7}

Since having Little Baby L, I have prayed on this verse many, many times. L was born 5 weeks prematurely, and even though 5 weeks doesn’t seem like much, it definitely is when it comes to babies. L has had so many health problems since she has been born, many of them stemming from her prematurity.
As I sat and watched her in pain, sick, in incubators, and getting poked and prodded, my heart broke into a million pieces. For L’s first month here, she spent more time in the hospital than she did in our home. Looking at things from my sight, I felt broken, sad, and guilty. 

One day I was driving home from the hospital to grab a quick shower while K stayed with L at the hospital. I turned on my favorite Christian radio station, even though my mind was elsewhere, deep in thought about L. I started to pray, praying that Jesus would heal my daughter, while giving her the strength to get through all these painful issues, and to give K and I the ability to help her in every way that we could.
As I ended my prayers, I turned up the radio to distance my mind from my thoughts. Just as I did, the song “No Longer Slaves” by Jonathan David and Melissa Helser came on. As I listened to the lyrics, I could feel God speaking to me from them.

“I am no longer a slave to fear; I am a child of God.”
Why was I fearing when God when holding His children in His hands? He was holding all three of us, safe in His comforting arms.

“From my Mother’s womb, You have chosen me.”
God chose us to be L’s parents. He blessed us with her because He trusted us to be her parents. Why would I question His reasons for everything going on?

“You split the sea so I could walk right through it; all my fears were drowned in perfect love.”
He loves us SO much that He takes every fear, worry, and hurt for His own and replaces it with His love, comfort, and hope. 

I felt a huge weight lifted off my shoulders as I cried and listened. It was going to be okay because He was with us. He would heal her in His time, and He would give us His strength until that time came.

That is not the last time I let fear into my heart. But, when I feel fear coming, I remind myself that faith is stronger. I must walk in faith, day by day, to save my heart from fear and to give all my worries to Him because there is no point in worrying when He is in control of everything. I must, and we must, walk by faith, not by sight.

xoxo, Brandi

Friday, November 20, 2015

fav on a friday | thanksgiving favs

Happy Friday, loves! 
Can you believe it's almost Thanksgiving?! I feel like we just celebrated the Fourth of July! Even though I can't believe it's already almost here, I'm so excited that it is! Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, and it's Little Baby L's first, so I'm double excited.

So for this week's FridayFavorite, I figured I would write about my favorite things about Thanksgiving!

1} Family. My absolute favorite thing about Thanksgiving is gathering with my family and celebrating why we are thankful. I love cooking all of our family recipes together (and trying new ones!) and sitting around the table enjoying dinner together.

2} Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. It's been a tradition in my family ever since I can remember to watch the parade while cooking and preparing dinner. My mom and I always sit and talk about which of the events are our favorite and how the parade is different from last year. It's a tradition I have grown to love and one that I'm so excited about passing down to Little Baby L this year!

3} Food. Calories? What are calories? I'm pretty sure it's a law that calories don't count on Thanksgiving.. Somewhere, anyway. I'm a natural born foodie to begin with, so Thanksgiving food is definitely on my list of favorites. My favorite thing to eat on Thanksgiving: my mom's broccoli casserole. It's to die for.

4} Full belly feeling. Am I the only one that knows this feeling? That feel of pure fully belly bliss that induces you into the best nap you take all year? No? Yes? 

5} Football. 'Nuff said.

5} Preparing for Black Friday. Now, when I say this, I don't mean that we go out at noon on Thanksgiving to sit in front of a locked door for 12 hours. We are firm believers that we save Black Friday shopping for, you know, Black Friday. However, I do like to sit with K and figure out where we are going when and figure out approximately how many cups of coffee our bodies can handle before we explode. 

What are your favorite things about Thanksgiving? 

{Give thanks to the Lord, His steadfast love endures forever. -Psalm 136:3}

xoxo, Brandi

Thursday, November 19, 2015

the momma behind | little momma life!

I sat and thought for hours what I should write my very first blog post about. Then it hit me: Duh! I should introduce who I even am, since you are reading about my deepest darkest secrets and all…. Just kidding. But really; meet the momma behind Little Momma Life! 

I’m married to the love of my life, K. (Cliche, I know. But it’s true!) We got married on January 4, 2014, and we’ve been peeing in front of each other ever since! Oh, and we talk and kiss and stuff, too.

I became a momma to the most beautiful baby girl ever (I’m biased, but I can’t help it.), L, on September 26, 2015. She’s the best part of K and I, and she’s pretty darn adorable, too! I'm currently a stay at home momma to her.

I was saved by the Grace of God in 2011 and I’ve been living my life for Him ever since! I owe everything in my life to Him, and I have no shame in saying so!

I’m a small business owner! I own Little Stitches by Brandi Little, otherwise known as #LSBBL. Feel free to check out my shop in the link above!

I’m a lover of many things, including: coffee, baking cats, reading, crafting, fashion, shopping, holidays, flowers, glitter, candles, monograms, gold, Grey’s Anatomy, Target…. Okay, so I love a lot of things.
But I love Jesus and my family most of all!

I started this blog to {hopefully} spread some encouragement, inspiration, and love to all those who need it. 
So if you are reading this, I hope that you join me on the rest of my journey, find some hope, and share a few laughs!

Let’s be friends!
Instagram: @brandijolittle
Pinterest: @brandijolittle