The Smith Project

finances

Is Breast Best?

Motherhood, Family, PregnancyAndrea SmithComment

Oh, the highs and lows of breastfeeding

When people tell you that breastfeeding is best for your baby, it really is true. But no one tells you how hard it really is. I was an avid researcher while I was pregnant with learning all the things I needed to know with what was going on with my body and my baby.

In my third trimester was when I started to do research of breastfeeding. I highly recommend The Art of Breastfeeding by La Leche International. It really is the bible for breastfeeding. I read up to half of the book before my son decided to make his debut. It was really helpful in getting me a head start mentally with how much work you have to put into breastfeeding. But nothing, I mean NOTHING prepares you until you actually go through it. I knew breastfeeding was hard. But I did not know HOW hard it was until I was facing engorged breasts, painful nipples, fear of yeast infections, nipple shields, 3AM feedings, on-demand feedings and more.

I don't care what people tell you about breastfeeding. It is bleeping hard!

Is it worth it? Yes. There are so many benefits to breastfeeding. Bonding with your child, free milk, saving money long term, portable, high percentages with learning are better, extremely low chance of being obese, the list goes on. Would I do it all over again? Yes. Do you use formula? Yes! If I don't have time to pump, (which a lot of the time I don't) when my son goes over to Grandma and Grandpas house, if they don't have the milk I pumped, he drinks the formula, and guess what... he's fine. Seriously this is NOT an article to bash moms who couldn't breastfeed their child. I give you a standing ovation for trying or not trying! It is a lot of work. But for me and my family, I decided I wanted to breastfeed.

Here's my journey so far with breastfeeding. All my milk came in the day after I delivered. Some of you may think wow that's amazing! Eh no it wasn't. I woke up from a nap, and my boobs were freaking rocks and I mean rocks! I didn't get to see a lactation consulate until the following day and I was in so. Much. Pain. Plus, they massaged the crap out of my breasts that I am pretty sure I have damaged scar tissue and my right breast literally hurts all the time. Being a first time

Starting Fresh

MarriageAndrea SmithComment

When you get home from your honeymoon and you've had some down time, you now need to get things moving. First things first, food. Your fridge is empty and you need to shop ASAP. But where do you start?! My husband and I like to have a game plan set before we make purchases. We are a newly wed couple, barely getting by with the rent and need to wise about our spending. So this might sound really rigid. But, for newbies who are broke, we wanted to start out with the right foot financially. Below I have some suggestions that have helped me and my husband out so far.


Here are 5 Tips that have helped me when shopping “Together”

  1. STICK TO THE BUDGET When it's your first time shopping for groceries make sure you have enough money to get everything you need. You'll be surprised how quickly things add up. We ourselves ended up going over the budget. But we underestimated on what we needed and how much everything would cost, and I don't want you to make the same mistake. So try not to blow ALL your money on the honeymoon so you have some money for when you get home. Luckily we had some left over money and were able to cover it. But from now on we've agreed, we stick to the budget.
  2. MAKE A LIST I find lists to be a lifesaver because it saves me time and money. Even when I was single it helped me so much in making purchases that I NEEDED, and wait on other things that I WANTED.
  3. GO SHOPPING TOGETHER I've heard it's important to go shopping together often during the year of marriage. I think it's fair to say that's true. Think about it, you are two different people starting to live together FOREVER! So you need to figure each other out, give and take a little so your spouse can see what you like and dislike.
  4. BE PATIENT My husband gave me this great pointer and it's so true! You really need to be patient and gracious with each other when you go out. Jared and I had a good time out shopping our first time. Until we came to the checkout :-) but we learned from our mistake and will move on. Even though you have been dating for x amount of years, or engaged, it's so different when you start living together and you're stuck with them. ;-) You have to work it out. You've gotten this far from when you first dated to your wedding day. If you're having a disagreement about which cereal to buy, take a step back and breathe.
  5. EAT BEFORE YOU GO OMG I don't know how many times I've done this, but I tend to be in a rush and go run errands but forget to eat! Then I end up spending WAY more than I wanted to, and end feeling discouraged. But when I eat BEFORE I go grocery shopping I am much less tempted to spend extra money. I think I am not alone here. We all have done this so start making it a habit now before it gets crazy.

How to save Money-

Coupons

-Decide where you want to shop and look online or in the paper for coupons, you could save more than you think!

Farmers Market

-Purchase fresh, organic foods and spices for super affordable prices. Ask around. People know where to shop and save money

Food Pantry

-You'll be surprised, but if you are on a tight budget lots of food pantries and churches get donated great food from places like Panera Bread, Dean and Deluca etc. And it's all free!

***I would LOVE to hear your suggestions and comments regarding this post. I want to make this a place where people can come and give advice and suggestions for married life. Look forward to reading your thoughts! :-)