Friday, July 20, 2012

Pregnancy Essentials :: My Guide To Surviving The First Forty.

Now, I'm no Michelle Duggar but as you all know, this last pregnancy was not my first Pregnant Rodeo. After publishing this post all about the nitty-gritty newborn necessities imperative to surviving those crucial first few weeks of motherhood, I received a number of emails asking me to share my list of Pregnancy Must-Haves. 

Granted, the things on this list aren't nearly as cute as the ones you'd find on this post, but they are certainly things, in my opinion, that any pregnant mama shouldn't be without. In no particular order, here are the things I couldn't have survived either of my pregnancies without: 

1. Humor
Belly Laughs: The Naked Truth About Pregnancy And Childbirth

Be prepared to laugh at yourself. I understand wholly that this will become harder and harder to do as both your belly and behind begin to expand, but I promise you, you will not survive 40 weeks with your sanity intact if you cannot laugh. With my first pregnancy, I read Jenny McCarthy's book "Belly Laughs" and its a book I recommend to all of my newly pregnant friends. With my second, I read blogs. Lots and lots of mom blogs. You know, like the one you're reading now. 

2. A Great Pair (or four) of Maternity Denim

7 For All Mankind Secret Fit Belly(tm) 5 Pocket Boot Cut Maternity Jeans

Speaking of growing behinds, nothing makes you feel better about yourself than a great pair of jeans, am I right? The same goes for pregnancy. I invested in a couple of pairs of fabulous designer denim very early on. With my first pregnancy, I was working full time and had the funds to procure my most favorite pair of jeans found here. With my second, the budget was much tighter but I turned to eBay to find even more designer denim at an absolute steal. If you're ever in a rut when it comes to dressing your bump, I wrote a post here about how to do so without feeling "frump-tastic."

3. A Maternity Body Pillow such as The Snoogle

Snoogle Chic Jersey - Snoogle Total Body Pregnancy Pillow with 100% Jersey Cotton Knit Easy on-off Zippered Cover

I have no other words for this pillow other than "life-changing." Unfortunately, you may need to ask your significant other to sleep on the couch in order to accommodate this sucker into your bed at night but believe me, it is well worth it. You may even find your significant other spooning your maternity body pillow in the wee hours of the morning, much like mine did. Relegated to sleeping on your sides for much of your pregnancy, I found that this pillow helped maintain alignment in my hips and spine and helped to alleviate some of the pressure that my shoulders, neck and hips often bared the brunt of. 

4. Therma-Care Wraps - Heating Pad - Hot Water Bottle

ThermaCare Air-Activated Heatwraps, Back & Hip

Whether it's round ligament pain or a lower backache, during pregnancy both can feel like the end of the world. In the beginning, a simple nap with the heating pad did wonders but as a pregnant Mom to the Crazy Wildebeest Toddler, a simple nap wasn't always in the cards. That's where the Therma-Care wraps came in handy. Worn like a belt, these wraps did wonders for the insane lower back pain that I felt towards the end of my second pregnancy.

5. Mocktails and Sparkling Water 

Zero Proof Cocktails: Alcohol-Free Beverages for Every Occasion

We all know how important water is during pregnancy. If you're anything like me, you'd rather gouge your eyes out with molten hot blunt forks before consuming the recommended amount of water per day in which case, sparkling water was a god send. Even better, when mixed with fruit juice during the hot summer months, you can almost, almost trick your body into thinking you're actually drinking some sort of spritz-y wine cooler. No matter where you are, try drinking it out of a wine glass. Believe me, it makes it taste that much better. 

6. Stretch Mark Cream

Bio-Oil PurCellin Oil Facial Treatment Products

As a nurse, I'll be the first one to call bullshit on these products. Why? Because I remember learning somewhere, sometime that stretch marks during pregnancy were more genetic than anything else. So friends? If you're wondering how your midriff will fare during those forty weeks, I suggest you talk to your mamas about it. That being said, that certainly didn't stop me from trying a handful of products out on the market designed to prevent/hide/treat those suckers. If nothing else, at least it helps with the crazy itchiness that comes along with a growing belly. 

7. Morning Sickness Remedies

Preggie Pop Drops (21 Pieces) - Assortment of Sour Flavors

My morning sickness- wait, who am I kidding? My ALL DAY sickness was never so terrible to warrant prescribed medication. Had it been so, you know I'd be first in line for some Zofran. During those first few weeks of pregnancy, however, when you wake up with the sudden urge to run to the nearest porcelain throne, I suggest having the following on hand: 

8. The Belly Bandit

Okay, so this little ditty may not be something you use during your pregnancy but you sure as heck are going to want to use it just days after giving birth. With my first pregnancy, I used the cheap (read: flimsy) abdominal binder that was given to me in the hospital in the weeks following Carter's birth. By week 3 it was so stretched out that it hardly "sucked" me in so I made a mental note to purchase The Belly Bandit should I find myself pregnant again. Not only had this compression wrap done wonders to shrink my postpartum belly but having had a repeat C-section, it really helped reduce a lot of my post-surgical and incision pain. 

So... Congratulations! Hopefully you find this list helpful now that you've peed on a stick (or ten, or twelve) and are preparing yourself for the wild adventure that lies ahead. Remember above all else, don't forget to laugh!

If you have any questions about anything, feel free to email me at iloveyoumorethancarrots (at) gmail (dot) com. 

Happy Friday! 

**I was not and will not be compensated for the purchase of any of the above mentioned items. I am simply expressing my personal and honest opinion regarding products I love.


  1. So I wanted to try the Belly Bandit after KP but got mixed reviews on it. It really works?! I'm thinking I may need one post Baby Dew #2. Also I big pink puffy heart Jenny. Her books make me feel normal.

  2. I really wish I would have invested in a snoogle this time around. I have the bobby prego pillow, but its small, and I basically end up hugging 3 other pillows lol. I DO have the belly bandit this time around and can't wait to try it out!

  3. Have you ever seen the Bak-Up Plan with Jennifer Lopez? There are some of the funniest lines about the pregnancy pillow and whenever I would use mine I'd think of that. It was seriously life changing, as were my maternity jeans that I wore until Blake was like 6 months. Haha!

  4. Okay. So I need the Belly Bandit. Crap! I only have 10 days! I'm on it:)

  5. I sleep pretty much like a baby all night long thanks to that big ass snoogle. I love it.

  6. I had my husband online in the hospital buying me the belly bandit. It arrived so quickly & yup loved it though I know it gets some flack from the professionals.

  7. I used a lot of these products with my one and only pregnancy and my friend lent me the Belly Laughs book. I loved it!

    I was so pissed that I got stretch marks! My mom had 3 huge babies (11.5 lbs, 10.5 lbs, and 9.5lbs) and didn't get a single one. I thought for sure that I'd be just like her even having a big baby since I heard it was genetic too. I got a bunch on my lower tummy and left hip. Not fair! I used cocoa butter lotions and stuff too, nothing prevented them for me.

  8. I love this post and used most of it! Along with the belly bandit, I used ShrinkxHips, too, which 100% helped! Kinda pricey, but I just sold it on ebay right after I was done, for almost what I paid for it.

    If we decide on baby #3, I would definitely buy some designer jeans next time. You're right, they just make you feel so much better.

    Thanks for this list! It's always fun to see what others consider their go-to products :)

  9. I wish I had known about the Belly Bandit!

  10. Wish I would've known about those preggy pops a couple years ago! Wonderful list!!

  11. What a great post! Thanks for the great suggestions

  12. I just love you. Thank you for this post! I just bought the snoogle, but I think I need to find a soft cover for it? I am on the hunt for a pair of sevens!! I got a pair of skinnies by Heidi Klum at motherhood, and they're actually kind of cute! You looked wonderful pregnant and give me hope to look cute whilst rocking le bump.

  13. What awesome tips - I think that I need to forward your entire posts to some of my friends that are expecting! Thanks you, lady!

  14. As I go through this first pregnancy, I am so grateful to find lists like this this!

  15. I always wondered if that belly bandit worked!! I should have gotten one!!

  16. I've had a bunch of Belly Bandits on "watch" on eBay & couldn't decide... I think you just sent me over the edge to purchase. You enabler, you.

    (I am also currently waiting for my bib necklace from groopdealz to arrive. Discovering your blog has been a costly {but delightful} adventure!}


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