Wednesday, March 30, 2016

obsessed...

she is 9 days old and we are trying to get the hang of everything.  bowie makes it easy on me, but there is definitely a learning curve with it all.  we are getting the hang of breast feeding and night time is unpredictable.  thank goodness for my parents being here to help out with meals, letting me nap and just getting us on track and feeling comfortable and confident.  i haven't had time to give a good update, but here are some pictures in the meantime.  she changes everyday and her features are starting to take shape.  all i can say is "we are in love."

8 days old and deep in thought...

 
we love when daddy gets home from work!



trying out the ergo, i think we need a little more time before using it...
milk drunk...

Monday, March 28, 2016

happy birthday sunshine!!!

happy happy birthday to the love of my life, my rock and my sunshine.  you are an amazing partner and daddy and i love you forever!!!


Sunday, March 27, 2016

introducing...

this would be about the time i would be blogging about my 39th week of pregnancy, but instead i get to give you a better update...bowie rae made her debut on march 21st at 9:14pm, she is 21.5 inches tall and 7 pounds 15 ounces!!!  she came at 38 weeks and 6 days for me, and it just so happens that my last blog post was on that day, so i went into labor that night.  here we are a week later and now that you have read all about my pregnancy journey, here is the birth story and some catch up from the last week.


last sunday (one week ago today) we meet our good friends from out of town in the city for lunch.  i was feeling good, having had some cramping and mild contractions all weekend.  we had a great lunch and headed home late afternoon.  i even sent out this picture of me to my friends that day asking when they thought bowie would come?!?!


everyone responded with dates late in march or even in april.  sooo...when i got home and took a nap it was around 5pm and i woke up around 7:30pm to my water breaking.  i wasn't completely sure at this point if i was absolutely correct, but as i got up and started to "leak" (sorry) i realized that i was pretty sure this is what had happened.  i came down the stairs and jarad was working in the garage, i asked him if he could come inside the house.  i wasn't panicked, but the thought that i could be in labor started to sink in.  i told him the news and we called the hospital, who told us to come in when we were ready (since i was not having contractions at this point) there was no rush.  we called our families and i took a shower and made sure the babysitter was situated with wilfred and double checked i had everything i needed for my hospital bag.  around 10pm we made our way into the hospital and checked into the birth center.  they confirmed that my water broke and that at that point i was admitted.  i started to get some contractions in the car, but nothing too painful, so i was watching the timing of them.  once admitted in the hospital they were coming more frequently and with some pain to them.  we were put in our birthing suite and i wanted to take a bath, but this was in no way comfortable for me or helped relieve any of the pain from contractions.  i asked the nurse (this was around 2:30am) what kinds of pain relief were available to me prior to getting the epidural.  they gave me something in my IV that lasted for about 30-40 minutes, it did not take away the pain but took the edge off of the contractions.  at this point i also put the order in for my epidural and received it around 4am, i was extremely nervous for this!!!  i got my epidural around 4am and although it wasn't pleasant, it was not as bad as i expected and the relief from it came pretty quickly.  however, my right side went completely numb and i still had feeling in my left leg.  this was a very strange sensation.  at this point i got really itchy from the medication and they were able to give me benedryl to help with the terrible itch, but this made me really sleepy.  this wasn't a bad thing because i was able to get some rest from the early hours of the morning until afternoon.  and i was so happy my parents were able to catch a flight out monday morning and arrived in the hospital around 11am!  with plenty of time to spare.  the afternoon was good, i was comfortable, however my dilation was only at 4 cm and not progressing fast enough.  they started giving me pitocin to increase the frequency and strength of my contractions.  this was working, but very slowly.  my doctor arrived and we discovered that bowie was what you call "sunny side up" and her head was facing upwards, instead of towards my back like babies should be when  you deliver.  this was causing my dilation to slow down and the doctor tried to manually move and flip her, but this was not working.  around 4 or 5pm i was starting to get very uncomfortable and in pain and they increased my epidural.  i was told to push since her head was down so low, but this really didn't work.  we stopped pushing and the doctor reassessed.  i had enough room to deliver her, but i would have to wait to be a full 10 cm dilated first.  the last few hours from 5-8:30pm were very rough on me and i was in a lot of pain.  i was using a peanut shaped yoga ball to see if this would help with correcting her position and all i can say is i was hurting at this point.  it was also around this time that my indigestion kicked up and i was having the worst heartburn ever.  the woman in the suite next to me also had this same situation and she ended up having a c-section, which is what they have to do most of the time.  by 8:30pm i was officially dilated to 10cm and it was time to push.  i had a great team on my side, a fantastic doctor, one resident doctor, 2 nurses and of course my supportive and encouraging cheerleader of a husband.  it took about 45 minutes and they kept telling me her head is right here, and then finally one big push at the end and she was here and was immediately put on my chest.


i could hardly believe i did it!  there were a few times in that 23 hour period of time from my water breaking to her delivery that i told jarad "i don't know if i can do this."  and his response was always the same "you are doing awesome, and you already are doing it."  it was a beautiful moment and you fall in love at first sight.  and then when i got a good look at her, i could not believe the amount of hair she had!  i can now say that i am a believer in the old wives tale about bad heartburn and a hairy baby.  we did a lot of skin to skin time and she got to have that with jarad as well and then they start with breast feeding right away.  that night is all kind of a blur, we were so filled with emotion, and you have nurses coming in all the time to check in and do some testing.  since she was born late at night and they need to keep you for 24 hours, we were not let out of the hospital until wednesday afternoon around 2pm.  coming home was so nice, we were ready at that point.  we came home to my parents here with a fridge full of food, some flowers and balloons and it was exciting to see wilfred's reaction to her.  he has been so curious and gentle with her.  i know he is having a hard time not being the baby anymore, but i can tell he will be good with her.  here are some pictures from the last few days...





she is 6 days old at this point and around this time one week ago i went to take that nap that would forever change our lives.  now as i write this i am using my breast pump and feeling like i need another nap.  my dad left today and my mom will be here for another week while we get the hang of things.  there sure is a learning curve when it comes to a newborn.  no matter how much you read and research i am learning something new everyday!  i am happy to say we are all happy and healthy and getting adjusted to our new normal, i will blog about my adventures in breast feeding and postpartum later, but for now this is a glimpse into my happy place...



Sunday, March 20, 2016

38 weeks!!!

she could come any day now!!!  my sister in law texted me this week saying this was around the time she went into labor with my niece!  i feel good for the most part, but i am also starting to get uncomfortable.  i feel so lucky that i have gone this far with minimal discomfort, no sickness and an overall easy pregnancy.  and i am still having more good days than not so good days, but this week i am experiencing some symptoms that make me feel like we are getting near the end.  i won't gross you out with the details, but you can imagine the weird things your body does to prepare for labor.

my doctors appointment this week went well.  the baby's heartbeat was in the 140's and my belly measured at 37 cm, which is what it was last week.  the doctor doesn't believe i have dropped yet, but said that it is common for first time moms to go into labor give or take 1 week of the due date.

some days i want to snack all day and other days i don't have much of an appetite at all.  there isn't much i have been craving lately, but i certainly am enjoying doing some cooking in our new kitchen, and i know jarad is loving it too!  and i am still working on my bags of ice, which i gnaw on daily!  i love being in our own bed and i was sleeping so well when we first moved, now i am having a harder time falling asleep and usually wake up around 3am and have a hard time falling back asleep.  it's annoying, but still much much better than the sleeping situation at the temp apartment.  i have to support my belly with pillows, otherwise i will start to cramp and in a painful way.  i was able to take a couple of naps this week and that was really nice.  i went on some walks too, but am not able to go as far as i was before the move to the rental house.  a mile and a half walk is a good distance for me and of course at a slower pace.  but it gets me and wilfred out of the house and staying active, so it is good for the both of us.

we had a busy weekend with friends...jarad rode his bike, friends for dinner and met up with some out of town friends who were visiting seattle.  i told jarad after this weekend i won't be making anymore plans. however, the entire weekend i was experiencing some braxton hicks contractions, cramping and pressure, which makes me think she may be starting to drop and we are getting close. i want to enjoy the last few days of pregnancy relaxing and i have a couple of things to get done during the week, but this is now "me time" until bowie arrives.


weight gain this week = 0 pounds
total weight gain = 23.5 pounds

baby is as big as pumpkin!!!

Saturday, March 19, 2016

postpartum pinterest project...

nothing like a little postpartum pinterest project to start your weekend!  i hear these are a necessity after labor and i thought i'd give it a try.  they are called "postpartum padsicles" are are meant for the healing process after delivery.

supplies:


~overnight maxi pads
~witch hazel (alcohol free!!!)
~aloe vera gel
~lavender essential oil
~ziplock bags for storage




 how to:

in a spray bottle pour witch hazel with 5-7 drops of lavender essential oil.  then carefully unwrap your pad and apply a thin layer of aloe vera gel on the entire pad.  with the back of a spoon spread it out evenly.  then take your spray bottle of witch hazel and mist over entire pad.  you want enough liquid to freeze, but not soaked or overly saturated.  wrap back up and place in ziplock bags and store in freezer.

***an important tip is that alcohol free witch hazel is hard to find!  i was a bit limited with my options here, of course i could have ordered online, but that came at a premium cost.  most witch hazel is called an astringent and has 14% alcohol in it.  a good health foods store with a beauty section may carry it (like whole foods) or a high quality ma and pa pharmacy.  there seems to be 3 popular brands that sell it this way and they are; thayers, humphreys and dickinsons and it tends to run anywhere from $10-$15 a bottle***

freezer ready!

Friday, March 18, 2016

anniversary dinner! lousiana bbq shrimp & lava cake...

one of my favorite cooking shows is called "cooks country" and i got their cookbook for christmas.  this is the only cooking show i watch that jarad will watch as well.  we saw an episode where they made "louisiana bbq shrimp" that jarad has been craving since we saw it.  i wanted to make this for our anniversary dinner as a surprise (even though i don't eat seafood) and i think it came out well.  i adapted this recipe from the cookbook, but had to really make it my own since i don't have all my own spices.

ingredients:

2 pounds of colossal shrimp (raw, cleaned and de-veined)
2 T vegetable oil
6 T unsalted butter
3/4 cup white wine
2 T all purpose flour
1 T bbq spice (or grilling spice meant for chicken and/or fish)
1/2 t red pepper flakes

how to:

in a large skillet heat up vegetable oil and cook shrimp with .5 T of bbq spice (make sure shrimp is dry) for about 1 - 1.5 minutes.  once they get some color remove them from pan and place on plate.  then add 2 T of butter and flour and make a golden colored rue.  then add wine, remaining butter, pepper flakes and rest of bbq spice and combine until the sauce comes together.  add shrimp back to sauce and cook for about 2-3 minutes until thoroughly coated and serve with warm crusty french bread for soaking up sauce.  i did this recipe by taste, so add more bbq spice, salt, pepper or heat to your liking.


my sister has this awesome cookbook that is called "dessert for two."  she recently made some lava cakes that came out well, so that seemed like a nice thing to try to get a little fancy.  plus one of our friends gave us the cutest ramekins before our move, so i was excited to bake them in that.  here is the recipe straight out of the book so you can see how easy it is and you probably have all of the ingredients in your pantry!


serve warm with ice cream or whipped cream!

Thursday, March 17, 2016

muesli...

while my sister was visiting she made some "overnight oats."  this was basically some rolled oats with almond milk that sat overnight, she would have them for breakfast with some fruit or nuts the next day.  well i LOVE muesli and had a favorite spot in venice beach that i always used to get it from.  i didn't realize that a lot of the cereal companies are making their own dried version that you can prepare in the fridge the same way my sister does.  i found one at the market this week and decided to give it a try and i was pleasantly surprised at how good it was!!!


how to:

before bed i placed 3/4 cup muesli mix in a bowl, added 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk and covered with plastic wrap in fridge.  in the morning i added a splash of cream and a splash of vermont maple syrup and diced in a banana.  that's it!  it was so good and satisfying.  you could add in any fruit or nuts you want to make it your own.  i added up the calories on this and it is around 430 calories, however to cut back on calories, you could omit the cream and syrup or pick a less calorie rich fruit, and the suggested serving size of the muesli is a 1/2 cup and i did 1.5 servings.  either way, i would feel better eating this over a bagel or donut.  it can also be served warm, but i prefer it cold.  give it a try, hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

happy 3 year anniversary!!!


erin,
since the very moment i first saw you, i knew there was something different about you. i was instantly drawn to you. it was a feeling i had never felt before in my life. over the years getting to know you better and better i started to see what was different. you are the most caring and thoughtful person i've ever met. i never thought i’d find a connection with someone where i could be myself and be accepted. when everybody calls me weird, you call me funny, that has always stuck with me. you make my life easier and better.
i want to tell you that...
i will always be there for you
i will always be there to teach you things
i will always be there to share new experiences with you
and of course, i will always love you.


happy anniversary to my amazing husband!  so much has happened in 3 years!  you are the best partner and i know you will be the best daddy!  the last year has brought us many adventures and i know we have countless adventures ahead of us.  i know the best is yet to come.

part of my vows to you that day were "you are my heart, my home and my happiness and i promise you a life time of adventure."

and those words have never been more true and i thank my lucky stars for having you as my husband, best friend and my rock.


Tuesday, March 15, 2016

progress on rental house...

having my family here last weekend was SOOOOO helpful!  they got us in good shape to be comfortable and organized in the last couple of weeks of pregnancy.  here are some more pictures of the house and the progress we have made and there are just a few more small spaces to finish!

kitchen
partial view of backyard from kitchen window
large kitchen pantry
dining room
 one side of master bedroom
other side of master bedroom
master bathroom
master bedroom walk in closet
one side of nursery
other side of nursery

Monday, March 14, 2016

37 weeks!!!

this has been an exciting and very productive week since moving to washington!  we moved into our rental house at the beginning of the week, i had a few days of trying to unpack and get organized, but the biggest highlight was my family coming in to help us get settled and do some fun stuff as well.  a lot of my pregnancy feels like we have been in limbo whether on the job hunt, arranging the move or figuring out a more semi-permanent living situation once we arrived here.  it hasn't been easy moving in my 3rd trimester, but aside from a few rough days, i think i am adjusting as well as can be expected and am still going strong.  but there is nothing like your family to help you get on track, and that is exactly what we did.  we spent a full day just going shopping, i mean stocking up on food to cook for freezer meals, pantry items for easy crock pot meals once the baby comes, items for the house and they even convinced me to get a costco membership.  doing all these things made me feel better prepared for bowie's arrival and we have gone weeks without our own dishes, pots, pans and kitchen stuff, which made me one very uninspired cook.  so now i am feeling more empowered to cook and nest, and they left me with some pre-cooked meals that i can pull out of the freezer for easy dinners!  then we focused on unpacking the necessities and getting the house set up so we are comfortable.  they broke down boxes and helped clean and left us in great shape, so we have minimal things to do in the last couple of weeks of pregnancy.  as fun and exciting as this all was, i ended up spending a lot of time on my feet this week, which lead me to have really bad swollen feet and ankles.  i had this a little last weekend after helping my friend paint, but not nearly as bad or long lasting.


i had a doctor appointment and everything is still looking  good so far.  the baby's heartbeat was between 145-150 and my belly measured right on track at 37 cm, so it appears that she has not dropped yet.  my appetite has lessened a bit and my biggest craving is still ice.  i also noticed that my nails that have been so strong and hard during my pregnancy are starting to get brittle, crack and break.  in addition to getting the nursery set up, we also spent some time getting the pack n play built, the stroller assembled and some of the other baby items out of the box and ready to go.  jarad has the car seat ready to go in the car and i think he is enjoying figuring out and playing with some of these baby items...it is like nesting for dads.  i am sleeping so much better in our own bed, it is like night and day.  i know insomnia is common for this late in pregnancy, so it was hard to tell if i was experiencing that or just being uncomfortable when we were living in the apartment.  but i think i was more uncomfortable than i realized.  our bed is so cozy for me right now and i am sleeping throughout the night and only getting up once or twice to go to the bathroom.  and now that the house is 85% ready i am excited to spend the last couple of weeks of pregnancy relaxing as much as possible.  i want to spend some time just napping, watching reality TV and lounging without worrying about all the things i need to get done.

weekly milestones...

~baby is practicing inhaling, exhaling, sucking, gripping and blinking
~baby can measure between 18.9 - 20.9 inches long and can weigh about 7 pounds and she is gaining a 1/2 ounce each day
~if born now she would not require an incubator and lungs are fully formed
~baby is considered near term
~i probably won't get much bigger and have most likely gotten as big as i am going to get!

weight gain this week = 1 pound
total weight gain = 24.5 pounds

baby is the size of a winter melon!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

new fav?!?!

there is a pizza place less than five minutes from the house called "mod pizza."  it is one of the places that has the par-baked dough and cooks in a wood fire in minutes.  it is really good and they have great salads as well, but tonight i discovered they also have SOFT ICE!!!  that was so exciting!  i don't know if they sell it by the bag like sonic, but now i know i can get a quick "fix" close to home.  i officially sound like a crazy lady!


but the best part of the day is that my family is on a plane right now and will be arriving in 2 short hours!  i have a few things i would like to do around the house before they get here, and i am so excited to get in the car and pick them up from the airport.  wilfred has no idea he is about to see his favorite people very soon!

mom & jamie waiting in airport!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

rental house!!!

yesterday the movers came with 2 trucks to deliver all of our stuff from storage!  this is the day we have been waiting for since we moved here!


we are now officially residents of the maple valley area of washington!  the house is plenty big and we are not planning on unpacking everything, but it is hard to find certain things without opening every single box.  our plan is to get the family room, bedrooms, nursery, office, kitchen and garage set up with the basics we need.  we will consolidate boxes and store the stuff we don't need in the family room and garage until we make a permanent move.  we are planning on being here 3-6 months while we get ready for the baby's arrival and can house hunt on a slower more realistic pace.  so i haven't taken any pics of all the boxes and the huge mess around me, but here are a few things i got accomplished in the last day and a half.  keep in mind we are going minimal, so i won't be unpacking much in the way of art or decorations.

start of nursery!  let the nesting begin!

guest room!  ready for visitors!

guest bathroom - upstairs.

entry way

family room furniture in place, but not yet "done."

there is a lot more to do.  the kitchen is a bit overwhelming because we have so many boxes and they are stacked high and extra heavy.  i am so excited that my family is coming up tomorrow through the weekend to help get us settled.  i can't wait to show them the area and explore and also have a few extra sets of hands to help!  stay tuned for more house updates, there will be lots more to see!  the best part was sleeping in our own bed last night!  i put on cozy flannel sheets and we were so much more comfortable (wilfred included). 

Sunday, March 6, 2016

36 weeks!!!

so close, yet so far away!!!  this has been a good week, we are so excited because tomorrow we will be moving into the rental house and you know what that means...i get to set up the nursery, FINALLY!!!  i have this incredibly strong urge to "nest" but i am also in this temp apartment, so i can not wait to unpack her baby stuff and get it set up and decorated.  and thank goodness for family!  my parents and sister will be coming up to help us unpack and get settled!

i had a doctor appointment this week and i will now start going weekly.  my doctor said everything is looking great.  baby's heart beat was high 150's and she was very active!  my belly is measuring 35.5 cm which is right on track as is my weight gain.  i had a couple of important questions on my mind to ask the doctor.  i wanted to know if i go late at what point would they induce me?  she said "if i go to 40 weeks at that point we will make an induction plan and also run some tests for the baby's health." i also wanted to know if there is a correlation between my belly measurements and when i go into labor?"  since i have been measuring right on track every week, i wasn't sure if that means the baby will more likely be on time?  the doctor said "not necessarily, but if my measurements start to drop a cm, then we will do a cervical check to see if i am dilated."  and she confirmed her head is in the downward position.  unfortunately my doctor is booked solid for the next two weeks, so i will be seeing one of the other doctors in the practice.  i think this is good so in case my doctor does not deliver the baby, i will meet one of the other doctors who could potentially deliver her.

this week i packed up the diaper bag and my hospital bag is officially ready!  once my family leaves from their visit, we will install the car seat, and be ready for "go time."  i am still sleeping in the living room on the air mattress, i am getting very little sleep during the night and i haven't taken any naps this week.  one day while getting ready i used a cotton ball with eye make up remover to clean up what i thought was dark eye make, but to my surprise it was actually dark circles.  but somehow i am making it through the day and not feeling overly tired, but i do wish sleep would come easier for me right now.  and still getting restless legs at night, i'm gonna say that i don't think the soap works.  when i feel that way i usually stretch or massage my legs or take a bath.  my strongest craving is still for ice.  this seems to be a big one with pregnant ladies (who knew) but my mouth waters for it the same way it would water for the most delicious steak dinner you can think of.  i've done a lot of reading on this and people seem to really love the "soft ice" from sonic, in fact they say you can buy bags of it.  i have never been to sonic before, but it is small round balls of ice (almost like hail) that are soft and cloudy.  i have found that cloudy ice is softer as opposed to crystal clear ice.  i met a girlfriend for lunch in tacoma this week, and that also happened to be the closest sonic, so i bought a cup of ice and 2 x 10 pound bags for $3.48!  worth every penny!!!  now i can just grab a cup from my freezer and enjoy!  these days i prefer ice over my ice cream, i know it sounds CRAZY!!!



i am still staying active and walking daily.  i truly think this has helped me to get through my pregnancy feeling good most of the time.  i did start to get some sciatic pain on my right side, which can slow me down a bit.  but again, i think it feels better the more i move and stay fit.  i am also noticing that i am getting some small dark patches on my face.  i have one that just popped up underneath my right eye brow, and as i looked closer (without make up on) i noticed i had quite a few all over my face.  and my wedding rings are starting to get a bit tight, depending on the weather and my salt intake.  i can still wear them (and they are fine if the weather is cold) but sometimes just wearing a band is more comfortable. over the weekend i helped a girlfriend paint and i think it was just too much for me.  i ended up getting some cramping and extremely tired the next day.  i also noticed for  the first time that both my hands and feet are a little swollen.  that probably explains why my rings don't fit as well.

weight gain this week = zero
total weight gain = 23.5 pounds

 weekly milestones...

~baby is getting closer and closer to being able to breathe on her own
~baby's skin is getting smooth and soft and gums are rigid
~baby's liver and kidneys are in working order and circulation and immune system are almost good to go
~the baby's protective fat layer will make up about 15% of the baby's weight at birth
~baby's cheeks are developing fat and cheek muscles are also developing to give that chubby appearance
~after this week bowie will almost be "full term"
~the digestive system is the only major system that is not fully developed and will not be until she starts feeding after birth
~baby should be close to 19 inches long and about 6 pounds now!

baby is as big as a honeydew!

Friday, March 4, 2016

hospital bag...

there are so many lists online of what to pack in your hospital bag.  i am a minimal packer, so i don't feel the need to go overboard, but after looking over all the lists and talking to my mommy friends, these are the essentials i will be bringing with me...

1. snacks!!!  i hear you should have some easy go to snacks like granola bars, protein bars and even some candy (for a quick sugar pick me up).  you should also include some change for vending machines in case the hospital cafeteria is closed.


2.  toiletries!!!  seems pretty self explanatory, but i am bringing travel sized shampoo, conditioner, soap, toothbrush and toothpaste, chap stick, deodorant and plenty of hair ties (i hear this is a must have!!!).


3.  going home outfit for baby.  i am bringing both a newborn size and a 0-3 month size.  i hear they have long fingernails at birth and the hospital is not allowed to cut them, so i am also bringing the baby mittens so she does not scratch her face. 


4. nursing bra & tank top, non slip socks, robe, underwear and comfy clothes for me.  i am hoping i did well at target for some nursing bras and tank tops (they seemed like the most comfortable options in the fitting room).  i am only bringing one set (as well as nursing pads) since i want to make sure i like what i bought before taking the tags off of the rest.  i ended up buying 3 nursing bras and 2 tank tops from there.  i hear the tank tops are great!  they have straps that come undone like a nursing bra, but give you some support and i think i will also like sleeping in them.  in case you end up walking around the hospital to get labor going, i may want my own bathrobe and non slip socks.  i also am bringing a pair of pajama bottoms and yoga pants.  this may be overkill, but i am really not sure what i will be comfortable in post delivery and going home.  i should also include a tshirt and boxers for jarad, i think he might appreciate it.


5.  phone charger!!!  this is essential!  we should really bring 2 of them, one for each phone!  gotta be able to send those family and friend updates and snap some pics!

6.  birth plan.  i have my wishes saved in an app on my phone, and jarad and i have discussed them so he is aware as well.  i have already pre-registered for the hospital online, but i will also bring a copy of my insurance just in case and the name/information of our pediatrician for bowie. 

7.  properly installed car seat and blanket for bowie.

***a couple of things i may throw in the car last minute would be my own pillow (as i hear hospital pillows are not very comfortable and her boppy (nursing pillow).  my sister in law made a good point that with all the hospital germs she didn't want to bring the boppy with her, so that is why i may throw it in the car (if my head is clear) and decide later if i need it or not.  i think that is it for now, but if any of you mommy's see that i missed any key items, please let me know!***