white plum giveaway!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

cozy sweater anyone?!?  white plum is back giving away a $50 credit to their store and with it you should get this (the one above) or this.  they do have other things, but their sweaters are speaking to me these days.  whether it's their ability to so effortlessly cover up a let down leak or to mask the strange post baby belly, i basically throw this one on all the time.  thank you white plum!

this giveaway is open through the 24th.  also, use TALESHOLIDAY25 for 25% off until december 24th.  fyi: they're also offering free standard shipping on ALL orders until new year's eve.  

this post is sponsored by white plum.

Bridget's Baby Favorites.

Monday, December 15, 2014

first and foremost, thank you so much for all the love you've given my family over the past week.  it's been a really sweet time here and things are going so well.  we had our first true solo day today and it went great.  we didn't venture too far (you know, that postpartum bleeding that tells you to slow down and take it easy even though you're feeling really good!) but did get outside and put our faces to the sun.  anders has a reputation that he continues to maintain as quietest and sleepiest hunt and i'm crossing my fingers that he's not going to simply wake up one day and be like, "psyche!  i hate sleep!"  parker and i did some puzzles together, i watched barbara walter's fascinating people special, and i even did a little bit of laundry and vacuuming (don't tell my mom.  she's pretty strict on the, "take it easy" rule.).  anyway, while we're on the baby subject, i've had emails and/or comments before asking if i could do a "registry" post.  i never really have, aside from some favorite things posts here and there because i guess everyone is so different?  what's a necessity for one is entirely overlooked for another.  i don't really think babies require that much.  onesies and burp cloths and some blankets and diapers, but a lot of the other bells and whistles are not so much necessities as they are wants.  this list is a little bit of both.  my favorite necessities (a baby carrier!!!), and a few wants (a beautiful baby blanket, when really anything will do, beautiful or not!).  let me know if you have anything terribly important to add to the list!  this one certainly is not exhaustive...

thanks again everyone.  the hunts love you back!

// this brand is my favorite thing to dress babies in.  parker and anders both came home from the hospital in different pieces by them.  they fit tiny babies so nicely, everything is soooo soft, and their solid colors are awesome.  

// a really great baby blanket that you end up using nearly every day (so long as it's not in the wash). 

// swaddle blankets.  these by aden and anais have been so useful to me and the ones i have from when parker was a baby look good as new.  they've caught many a let down, spit up, shielded sun from a baby's face, been tucked in the carrier with them, so on and so forth.  can't recommend them enough.

// a great carrier.  i used to work at a high end baby and maternity store and between this brand and the ergo, they flew off the shelves.  waist/hip support is a must for your back (which bjorn doesn't have).  there are definitely more brands that fit the bill besides beco and ergo now, but the beco quickly became a staple for me and it was never far when parker was a baby.  when my mom left last week, i had a momentary, "what do i do!" with anders in my arms all the time and then i got out my beco and... new lease on life!  plus, babies love it too.  win win.

// freshly picked moccasins.  are they as good as everyone claims them to be?  yes, they really are.  they're adorable, and they stay on a kid's feet.  having a winter baby, even the tiny trumpettes are barely staying on.  crib moccasins to the rescue!  (i'm so glad she came out with the "crib moccasin" for the real wee ones!)

// this humidifier.  having a baby in the dry winter, i'm feeling like the humidifier that i rarely used with parker is more of a necessity this time around.  i've had it going a lot, and i'm pretty sure the mornings it's on, my nose feels way less dry and yuck when i awake.  to clean it i've been running it outside with a generous splash of white vinegar and water until it's empty.

Anders' birth story.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Here I sit typing out another birth story and feeling really, really blessed.  I have another sweet baby boy that I absolutely adore and who has quickly become an incredibly loved and cherished part of our family (and yes, even by his next older brother, Parker!).  Number six Hunt child, number eight Hunt, and we wouldn't want it any other way.  I think he's the last piece to our somewhat large puzzle and I can't imagine my life without him now.  We're totally smitten with our Anders.
My due date was December 6th.  My Mom and Dad had come early, while Steve was in California, as a just-in-case.  Luckily there was no need, but they planned to stay on through Thanksgiving and the baby's arrival.  It was so nice having them.  They gave us such a precious gift--their time, and so much of it.  My Mom and I nested together while my Dad worked alongside William and Steve doing his own tinkering in the garage and a few odd jobs for us.  We celebrated Thanksgiving with a delicious meal, and continued getting things done, as we eagerly awaited a baby. 
Parker came two days early, so I wasn't sure what to expect with this one.  My due date was nearing and I decided to do a few things to encourage labor.  Some dance parties (we had one a few days before I was due that lasted at least an hour in the living room to this playlist), some bouncing on one of those big exercise balls, drinking red raspberry leaf tea, a brisk walk.  To say I was feeling conflicted about this birth would be an understatement.  Even as I did these things to encourage labor, the moment I'd have an intense Braxton Hicks contraction, my thoughts would go, "Yes!  Maybe it's time!  But no!  Wait!  Not yet!"  I couldn't entirely get my mind and heart on board for what I knew my body was inevitably going to do. 
It was strange and different from the thoughts I had anticipating my labor with Parker.  I know why, but it was foreign to me just the same.  So here we were, December 6th.  My Mom made a chicken caesar salad and during dinner I had some Braxton Hicks that were a little more distracting than the ones I'd been having for weeks.  We finished dinner and I started to get Parker ready for bed.  Brushed his teeth, got in bed with him.  We read a story together and I had another while in his bed.  We finished the story and I cuddled with him until he fell asleep.  It was probably 7:00.  
I went up and told my Mom that it might be happening tonight.  I made sure I had everything I needed in my hospital bag, told Steve to get anything he'd want ready.  We put It's a Wonderful Life on and everyone but me sat to watch it.  I paced around the house as things became more regular.  I peeked in on Parker, kissed his hands, imagined him as a big brother which both made me ecstatic and a little bit heartbroken.  Him no longer my baby?  How could this be?  Around 8 or 8:30 we started timing my contractions (this app that I downloaded once they started--better late than never??--came in very handy!).  I was bouncing on the exercise ball through many of them, but as they got more intense I went into the kitchen and would lean on the kitchen counter and breathe through each one.  No water had broken, no mucous plug had been lost, but I was still sure that this was happening.  
They were coming every three to four minutes and lasting roughly a minute and a half for awhile.  We live close to the hospital, and I didn't want to get there too early, so we remained at the house till I had one that I moaned through (you know that labor moaning that sounds almost like an animal??  That's the one!).  That was about 11 pm.  My Mom has been with her daughters for many of our births and that was a signal to her that we should go.  I was more than happy to be on the way too.  I had one more as we entered the hospital (arriving at the doors that were locked for the evening!  Luckily someone was able to let us in.) and one more as I checked in.  It was about 11:20pm.  
Once in the room they asked me a few of the necessary questions, and had me on a monitor for twenty minutes so they could see how the baby was doing through them.  My midwife came in and checked me and I was 6 cm.  I remember being disappointed, hoping I was 8 or more!  I told her that I'd like to try the tub for some of the labor and they began to fill it up while I was on the monitor.  The contractions were really intense, I remember being relieved when each one would end and being entirely in the zone when I was in the midst of one.  I had my playlist going, having told Steve during a break from one to plug it in.  Most of the contractions I took while standing up and rocking with my head down breathing deeply.  After twenty minutes, they said the tub was ready and I could get off the monitor.  I went next door to the room with the tub and got in.  The warm water felt so nice on my body, almost like it was taking some of the contraction from my belly and back, and I was really happy to be in there. 
I was reminded by the midwife that I couldn't give birth in the tub which I knew.  (Massachusetts passed a law--I believe--that at a hospital you cannot have a water birth but you can labor in water.)  By about 12:10 am I was in the tub and had one contraction there that was quickly followed by another with a serious need to push. The midwife and nurse had left the room, thinking I'd be in the tub for awhile and it was just Steve, my Mom, and I.  I couldn't believe I already felt myself bearing down and it made me panic a little bit.  I was 6 cm 40 minutes ago!  I signaled as best I could for my Mom to get the midwife and when that contraction slowed I told her I felt myself bearing down.  She asked if I wanted to get out of the tub but thinking it was a fluke, and that I couldn't possibly be pushing yet (with Parker I arrived at 5 cm and was at the hospital for five hours before I had him, and that was after pushing for almost an hour.), I decided to stay for another contraction (the water was so nice!).  I was gripping the sides of the tub when another came and again the absolute need to push.  I flipped over into a sitting position as I pushed out his head, pointed down to signal to them, and then the midwife said, "Stop breathing, just push!"  And then I pushed out the rest of him.  Between her and I, we brought him to my chest where he immediately began to cry.  
I was in disbelief.  How did I get to this point so soon??  I had no pain upon pushing him out (a far cry from the experience I had when Parker crowned which was a second-degree tear.  This time?  None!).  I was thrilled to be done, shocked to be done.  We all were, from the midwife to the nurse to my Mom and Steve (to the other nurses I vaguely recall gathering outside the room asking, "She already had the baby?").  They helped me out of the bed where I remained until the placenta came out and the cord stopped pulsing.  The midwife asked, "Do you want to cut it?!"  I did.  He immediately began nursing and didn't stop for a good 45 minutes.  It's hard to capture what I was feeling.  Such surprise at having already given birth, such immediate love for this little boy, such wonder that he was perfect.  Steve and my Mom and I just kept making eye contact and laughing.  I recall Steve saying, "Gosh, I feel like we dodged a bullet."  (Because a long labor is so intense for him, you know.)  Anders was here!  He missed his due date by a mere 20 minutes.
The next day, William and Lindsey came to meet him, as well as my sister and brother in law.  My Mom came back to visit with my Dad (Anders and my Dad share the middle name, Emmett!).  That night Steve came and watched the game in our room until late, and then I sent him home for some good sleep.  I pushed to be discharged early, and this incredibly kind nurse did her absolute best to have all of his testing done (hearing, bilirubin, etc.) so that I could leave first chance I got.  By Monday morning at around 9 am, we were on our way home.  That's when Parker got to meet him and... guys!  I am so happy to announce that it went well and has been going well ever since.  No doubt we have trying times still to come, but I'm already so pleasantly surprised at the sweet tenderness Parker shows Anders.  That night Jordan came home for dinner and to meet the baby (Nathaniel hasn't had a chance to yet!).  
We're exactly one week in right now and it's going so well.  He's a dreamy little thing.  He sleeps and nurses and as of Thursday was already back to birth weight.  He'll be packing on the pounds in no time.  I want every moment to go slow and steady.  I smell him a lot, I look at his little fingers and toes and I kiss his lips.  I watch his spastic little movements and swaddle him so he feels safe and whisper in his ear, "I'm here!  It's Mama!" as we sit down to nurse.  I am completely in love with him, just as I knew I would be but couldn't believe I would be.  He's perfect and he's ours and there are times when I literally cannot believe how blessed I am.  It all just feels so miraculous.  Forgive me.  Between the hormones and the baby bliss, I'm a big pile of mush over here.

welcome to the world, anders emmett hunt.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

he's here and we're smitten.
thanks for all the love.  we're feeling it!


Tuesday, December 2, 2014

it's a funny time, the waiting on a baby time.  it's like... how far can i venture from the house do to errands... what day, what hour will he come... are these braxton hicks or is this more... how far do i want to venture from the house based on the fact that my pelvis feels a little like it's going to crack in half... is this the last load of laundry i'm going to do... who's driving the kids to school tomorrow if i go into labor... or is this the last load of laundry i'm going to do... you know.

tell you what makes it all way easier... having your parents around.  i have been blessed with fantastic parents, the kind you're happy to have stay day after day after day.  they've been here a little over a week already, since steve was in california, and they've still got a bit to go as we wait on this grandchild of theirs.  having them around is such a blessing.  on instagram i joked that my mom is a little florence nightingale plus ina may gaskin plus martha stewart combination.  and it's totally true... but better.  she joked that she's feeling the nesting too, and i think it's true.  yesterday she cooked (i did make dinner!  i'm not entirely useless!  white chili and it was delicious!) and watched parker while i vacuumed the car (i couldn't bear installing a car seat until i vacuumed out all the miscellany almonds and crumbs and sand etc. etc. that were floating around the floor of our old honda), she swept our front stoop, my dad and she wrapped some of our more delicate outdoor trees in burlap, she folds the laundry... as soon as i see something that needs doing, if i look away from it for a moment and look back, it's been done.  every morning there's a delicious steel coat oatmeal brewing with coconut oil and bananas and a big scoop of yogurt (william and lindsey are definitely loving the hot breakfast at the ready before they leave for school!) and she'll even do reiki on her anxious daughter (that's me.  i had a moment of anxiety yesterday as i got too far ahead of myself and worried about things that needed doing and kids and difficult phases and adding a baby to it all.  is it just me or do you cry at least once the week leading up to delivery too?).  and while that whirling dervish of a woman whirls, my dad is a little bit tim the tool man taylor plus he does know his way around the kitchen too. he made the thanksgiving gravy, dessert, and he's been doing other random house projects for us too.  basically, power couple, and we couldn't love them more if we tried.  steve comes home from a long day to continue getting stuff done (we've been building a garage for the last couple months so it's been essentially a race to the finish--baby or garage and we need the garage space to lessen some of the stuff in our house!) so to have their help... god-send.

i thank them constantly but it's worth having it in writing.  THANK YOU MOM AND DAD.  WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH.

i had an ob appointment yesterday and my midwife casually asked, "want me to check your cervix?" and i sort of froze.  what did i want the answer to be?  if she told me i was dilated, would that make me panic or would that be a cause for celebration?  and then it can mean nothing anyway... women can walk around for weeks dilated already... so what would knowing that information do for me?  thus, i said no, and she agreed.  i can't believe i'm already at a "want me to check your cervix" stage.  i swear, i just found out i was pregnant a few weeks ago.

in the meantime, i have a few odds and ends left to do.  changing sheets on beds, restocking our meat and bread supply, packing a hospital bag (every night i think... finish the hospital bag?  nah.  i am too content in my procrastination.), grabbing a few last christmas gifts.  i got a present from baby to parker, which was definitely on my must do list.  (yes... a sword-wielding knight... which on second thought seems a bit of an intense present for a brand new baby to be giving his big brother but parker does love those knights...).  i don't really take these off ever (closet options have widdled down to... about three things)--such a broken record at this point.  in fact, steve, please get me another pair for christmas?  solid black.  thank you.  and i am thinking of little activities that parker can do while i nurse a sleepy baby (my sister loves these little activity books.  fun and no mess!  any other must haves in this arena?).  and... what else?  we wait.  and soon, i will lay eyes on this new little person who's going to steal my heart and i can't hardly believe it.

hunt christmas extravaganza, iv.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

i love this picture of these two.

now, click to read more because this post is picture heeeeeavy.

thanksgiving! black friday!

Friday, November 28, 2014

hope you had wonderful thanksgivings full of turkey and gravy (extra gravy, always) and all the special people you love around you.  my mom and i did all the cooking here and it was so delicious.  we listened to christmas music and played in the snow and ate and watched football and movies and it was pretty great.

now, switching gears to the consumerism of the holiday to come (christmas!!!), here are some of the better black friday sales i've seen if you're starting (or finishing?  or neither?) your shopping today!



Transitioning to another baby.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

I'm really, really excited to meet this baby.  I'm visualizing that moment when you've just had your last push and you reach down to grab your slippery baby and your heart is instantaneously ten times bigger and I am so excited to do it again.

But my biggest mental roadblock is the question of how Parker will do with this transition.  I think it's safe to say that the transition will be biggest for him, more than any of us.  Maybe bigger than even my own?  He and I have spent nearly every day of the last three-plus years together.  I'm excited to give him another sibling--my own sisters are some of the greatest gifts my parents gave me--and also scared to do so.  He'll barely remember life before a little brother, right?  But I know there'll be growing pains.  He's a sensitive boy, and I'm a sensitive Mom, the growing pains will be real.  

So, asking you more well-seasonsed Moms: how can I ease this transition?  Is it wise to have him meet the baby in the hospital or better to do so at home?  I know the baby shouldn't be in my arms when he sees him for the first time, but what else?  I've heard it's nice to have a little gift from the baby to the big sibling.  Throughout this pregnancy, I've kept discussing the baby pretty light.  Calling the baby "our baby" and telling him all the things he'll get to teach the baby one day, or how the baby will love to watch him play.  There are times where he's so tender like putting his hand on my belly to feel the baby move, but other times when he seems so disinterested.  I figure this is normal.  I'd love to continue little dates with just Parker and I but I know that won't happen right away.  I'm all over the place.  So, here's where I ask, any tried and true tips???  I would love to have them in my arsenal for a few weeks (days?!) from now!  

Thank you!

Let's be fancy, shall we?

Monday, November 24, 2014

I'm someone who gets a bit of a high off a fancy drink from a restaurant.  Be it a morning latte (especially with the art in the foam!) or an evening old-fashioned with one giant ice cube (a drink I only discovered I liked right before getting pregnant), it's nice to feel a bit, well, fancy.  The normal ho-hum Monday through Friday grind doesn't give me a lot of opportunity to feel fancy.  I gotta find those opportunities where I can.  My favorite lipstick, a cute pair of socks, or in this case, a nice coffee.
When I was sent the Nespresso Vertuoline coffee and espresso maker, it brought my mornings to a whole new level.  The spread you see in this post... well, it's every morning of the week now.  (Lies.)  Pastries and berries and foam and that's just how we roll in the Hunt house.  Fancy a stop by?  You'll find us sitting around the table discussing lofty things, sipping our frothy drinks, and nibbling on delicious flaky crusts, popping berries into our mouth.
While I might be exaggerating a bit (just a wee bit!), I will say it is a seriously awesome machine.  It's one-handed (I can already see a very groggy Bridget with a nursing baby in one arm literally kissing this machine in the early morning hours to come), it's really good coffee (OR espresso), it's nearly instantaneous (!!), the milk frother that comes with is amazing and great for the kids too (check out Parker's warm chocolate milk up there!), and it just brings your morning coffee to a new level which is really a quite nice way to start the day.  Look at that foam!  Basically, I have a coffee bar in my kitchen now!  I've already made a mocha latte with it too (using both the machine and the milk frother) and that might've been my favorite.  And now I'm looking forward to the post Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner drinks (for my guests until this baby makes his debut!)--decaf with a splash of Bailey's?!  How about some Frangelico?  The entertaining potential is really fun too.

I suggest you take advantage of the sale (through the end of the day!) and give the coffee-aficionado in your life one of these for Christmas.  We can all be fancy together.

Thanks Nespresso for sponsoring this post.

Thoughts before you leave for the weekend.

Friday, November 21, 2014

There are so many thoughts swirling around my head right now.  Let's get them down on paper ("paper"), shall we?

+ I really hope this baby and Parker become best friends and that it's like the best thing that ever happened to him.  I'd be lying if I didn't admit, though, that once in awhile, I'm like, "What if they hate each other?"  Tell me you've had the same thoughts when you added another?  Of course, I hope William and Lindsey (and the older boys for that matter) love this baby too, but I suspect the adjustment won't be quite as big for them.  

+ Sleep is getting trickier, blah blah blah, so imagine my delight when I was sent one of these.  It is so easy to use.  That shouldn't be my first point to highlight about it because there are way cooler features than its ease of use but when you stumble downstairs after a semi-sleepless night, it's pretty great to pop in the capsule and still feel sophisticated when I look like crap but have an inch of crema on top of my coffee.  (Even saying crema makes me more sophisticated than I was last week.)  More to come on it, but wanted to give you the heads up that there's a 25% off sale on them this weekend.  (Thank you Nespresso!)

+ You know how all those articles or blog posts get shared like rapid fire on Facebook: why you need to slow down and say "yes" to your kids more or why Mom-guilt is crap and you're entitled to take your alone time when they are sitting watching a cartoon.  You know the ones.  Well, they each have their valid points, no doubt, but there are times when Mom-guilt is going to getcha no matter how many articles or blog posts you read that say, "Don't let it!"  So, last night when I checked on a sleeping Parker, I felt so bad for always taking his Charlie Brown Christmas watching to get stuff done.  He almost always asks, "You wan watch wiff me?" and I basically always turn him down to get stuff done.  To my umpteen-month-pregnant-self it was enough to make me cry last night.  This is a point that needs so much unpacking and would be worthy of its own post, I think.  But I would like to ask, how do you all deal with that?  What do you do?  This will only get more complicated when I have another, so I think that post is in the works... 

+ I plan on taking William to see Mockingjay soon -- assuming he finishes the book (I force my kids to read by promising the movie afterwards!).  I am excited.  And it'll probably be the last movie I go to for like a year, so he better get that book read.  Lindsey is too cool for us and is going with friends.

+ Steve is en route to California for a conference as we speak.  Fear not, doula numbers one and two (my Mom and Dad) are coming both for back up and for a Thanksgiving feast (my Dad isn't actually going to be my doula, though I do adore the man.).  Let's just hope I don't go into labor while he's gone though.  I really would not like that.

+ I bought these for Parker for Christmas and I think they'll be a serious hit.  The reviews look good and I imagine it's something that'd be useful to take on a long plane ride too, right?  What are some total toddler-present wins in your book?  He's always loved the Caterpillar toys, and honestly, Matchbox cars are never, ever far from him.  What are you getting your teens?  Teens are so hard, all they want is electronics or clothes that you don't entirely trust yourself to buy them (style's ever changing!).    

+ What I would highly, highly, highly, highly suggest you add to your Christmas list is these leggings.  I have heard so much hype about them but, come on, $50 for leggings?  Well after asking if it was worth it on Twitter and having all positive responses, I decided to try for myself.  Holy moly.  Lululemon but half the cost, my friends (and apparently the same people behind the company?).  So soft, so thick, good stretch, matte (so they're really not specifically work out but could easily go under a dress in the winter).  The best part of my day?  Putting them on.  Just kidding but sort of not.  I'd honestly write a whole post on how much I love them but I already did that about sweats and two posts about comfy clothing seems a bit much.

Okay, I think that's it.  Thanks for bearing with me, today and all the days!  Have a good weekend.

37 weeks + thoughts on turning 30.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

{sweater: (old) calypso st. barth}
{top: (old) zara}
{maternity pants: c/o emoi emoi} 
{shoes: c/o shoemint}
{hat: forever 21}
{scarf: asos}

Pilot Me by Josh Garrels on Grooveshark

Last weekend I went away for a night with three of my dearest girlfriends.  A little 30th birthday celebration, a little before-baby-comes getaway, but mostly girlfriends just wanting to get together, with or without an excuse.  My friend Jenny is renting a place on the ocean in Maine right now, so it didn't take much cajoling to get us there.

We talked about everything under the sun, from husbands and marriage to careers and our futures.  It's really nice to have girlfriends that you feel comfortable being transparent with.  I am already prone to transparency, for better or for worse (sometimes for worse, I'm sure), but they're definitely a safe place to be so.  Sunday morning, we were sitting around in our pajamas by the fire and my friend Caroline asked me something along the lines of how I'm feeling as I near giving birth again, having another baby.  

I answered whatever came to mind at the time.  Something not-so-deep like, "I can't wait for the scrunchy newborn face, the sweet smell, I worry about the sleep loss."  It wasn't earth-shattering by any means.  But as I was getting ready to go, I thought more about the question and more about turning 30, and more about who I am now versus who I was at 21 when I started dating Steve.

I came back out and said, "I'm more keenly aware of how lucky I am."  I'm not trying to brag because Lord knows I'm certainly not mature in a thousand other ways and I can complain and be a total and complete wretch sometimes, but I do think that as I enter my 30s, I have more perspective that I simply did not have through my 20s.  Whether it's life or age or a mixture of both, it is such a welcome lesson to have under my belt.  That even on my shittiest days it's somewhere tucked in there and I can usually bring it to the forefront, "Bridget, you really are so lucky."  It's a game-changer.

favorite christmas + winter books.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

i'm taking a brief break from baby laundry (such little things!) to bring to you some favorite, though few, christmas-themed (or wintry) books of ours.  this one is about the sweetest and the illustrations are gorgeous.  in fact, all nancy tillman books are really, really precious and are the type that have you crying (in a really good way) by the end.  (thank you sara for turning me on to her in the first place!)  this one is a cute and quirky winter story by jan brett, author of our very favorite--berlioz!  then, you've got the mainstays... the night before christmas and the grinch and such.  but, really, the hunt library could use some more in this area.  your favorites, please?

(a convenient list here, complete with reviews.  i love reviews.)


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