Newborn Baby Gear: Must haves for a city dweller.

What does a baby really need? : Gear (0-3 months)

Want just the basics? Don’t have room for much more than that?  Here is my list of things I bought, recommend,  or saved for our newest addition.  The bare minimum this mom of 4 would say you should get in preparation for your new bundles first few months.

Let’s start with the basics, which I have broken down into the following categories:
sleep- play- eat- travel-bathe-diaper
SLEEP

-Crib:  a place to sleep in your room… or theirs!  A crib/pack and play,  or co sleeper… whatever it is you use.  We used a pack and play or co sleeper for the first few months which each kid, then they went to their crib.
Everyone has their own ideas on sleep, but the most important thing is that the baby sleeps, can I get an amen, moms?
-Baby chair/swing : I think our babies used their baby chairs more than their actual cribs for the first 3 months.  I put them in the living room or wherever I was sitting/recovering for the first few months, and since the newborn life is the sleep life, they slept perfectly in it all day in between nursing and visitors.
-Binkys/pacifiers:  I think Jack may be my first binky baby, and I am pretty happy about it, because how cute is a baby sucking on a pacifier?!
-Blankets: I swear by these ones from Aden & Anais (only the bamboo ones!).  They are so soft, my husband jokingly says he wishes they made them in adult size.  I use them  also as a nursing cover, carseat cover, blanket to lay the baby on, and burp rag.   I also recently bought these Solly Baby swaddles and love them too!  Just as soft and heavier than the muslin, if you have a fall/winter baby.
-Swaddle:  We use these, and love them.
PLAY
-A playmat:  Anyone will do.  Just something to look at for those few hours they are awake as newborns. Jack is just starting to really want to stare at something while he is awake, and watching him kick and coo at the animals that hang from the top, is just adorable.  If you want a beautiful one, I had my eyes on this one , but never actually spent the money to buy and ship it here.
EAT
This is one of the most complicated and cluttery part of babies gear… Whether nursing or bottle feeding (or both), you need so many things to feed a baby well.
-Burp rags:  Something to wipe up the spit up…anything.  ha!  old t shirts. or something fancy, Lord knows we don’t want to be smelling like cheese from our kids spit up all over us.  I use little muslin ones I found in here, but also loved having my favorite thin swaddles around to use as well.
-Boppy/nursing pillow:  Save your upper back now, and invest in a good nursing pillow.
-Bottles:  I have used these bottles   based on the recommendation of one of my first mommy friends 10 years ago!  Lots of pieces to wash, but less gassy babies, so I’d say it’s a good return on your investment.
-Breast pump: handpump  or normal pump depending on you r budget and how much you will need to pump.  I have used both, but really like a good hand pump because you can control the pull/suck.
-Storage bags for milk
-Formula
-Bottles
-Bottle drying rack
-Bottle brush 
-Nursing cover:  a friend recently bought me this one and swears by it!  The other three babies, I just used one of the apron looking covers you get at Babies R us.
TRAVEL
-Stroller: This could be a dissertation if I wanted.  So many strollers, so many price points (from  the price of a t shirt to a new car!).  I am gearing up to try a couple, but I’d say this is a need. Our city is pretty bumpy and cobblestoney, so I don’t use one here unless we are travelling or I know we will be somewhere that is easily navigated with a stroller.  Like a mall, or a specific park.
-Baby carrier:  My two go-tos with Jack are the Sollybaby, and the Ergo.  With previous babies I used the Moby Wrap, and all sorts of random clip on carriers, but overall I would say I love the Solly and Ergo the best.
The Solly is my favorite for the newborn days, when they just are so sweet, snuggly and sleep on you for a long time.  This is particularly helpful for outings, when your baby just sleeps through it all.   I will say the Solly, or any wrap for that matter is an investment in your time to put on.  I can sling mine on in a minute or so after 9 years of baby wearing, but in that rush of a crying baby, or trying to get out of a car with other kids it adds some time.
The pay off of snuggling your baby though, that’s priceless.  The ergo, is fast, and you can carry a kid from newborn until they are about 3…so if I were you, I would get both!
-Carseat: It’s the law!  Even in Istanbul, where we don’t have a car and use metros, buses, trams etc…  we use our carseat if we are in a taxi.  This is the one we have used for the last 3 kiddos, and we really like it.
BATHE
-Washcloths
-Soap: something gentle, pure and delicious smelling
-Towel
-Bath:  I had the big invasive baby bathtub with our oldest, but when it comes down to it throwing this bath seat in a big sink or bathtub is much easier, and takes up way less room.  Also, if you travel much- it folds up perfectly for your suitcase!
DIAPER
-Diapers: My all time favorite, which I can’t get in Turkey 🙁  I used them with Nora, and I can testify they work!  Also, they are soooo cute!
-Booty creme: To keep the rashes away!
-Wipes

-Changing pad/area: Changing table, floor, pad etc. Somewhere to diaper the little love.

Welcome, Jack

October 3, we welcomed our little guy into our family.  He is just what we need, and so sweet and snuggly.  Soaking up this baby baby stage, knowing too well how fast it passes.  Here are some pictures of Jack our third boy, and fourth baby!

XO

the first two pictures are in the hospital. the right is at 2 weeks old!

How To Capsule a Family

Capsule wardrobes may seem cool, but the organizing process can be overwhelming… and doing it for 6 people even more so!   Here are some simple tips or steps to follow to help you figure out the process.
1.   WHAT DO WE HAVE? ::       
Take an inventory of what you have in your closet- I prefer making it visual by laying it all out there.  You may be super surprised at how many clothing items you actually have!
Go through your piles (person by person is probably less overwhelming than every clothing item in your whole house).
Get rid of things that you don’t like, don’t fit, or your kids grew out of.  If you have a huge pile (which I hope you do) of old clothes… donate  them, sell them, or trade them in!
I literally wrote down every single item of clothing my family owns… Type A much?  As I was going through everything, I realized I have some items already that I had seen in the mall and wanted to buy.  I had just forgotten about them in storage.  For me, it felt good to have this all organized.
2.  WHAT DO WE WANT?::  
Ask yourself these questions as you decide what to keep::  What has inspired me ?  What trends do I want to copy?  Why do I want to  keep it?  Does it fit?  Does it make you happy?  Is it even my style, or it something I wish I could pull off?
Throw it in a pile if the reason to keep it isn’t good enough.
Thought’s on wanting:
From what you have:  Think about whether or not it actually fits, if you’ve worn it in the past year, or if you’re even keeping it for a realistic reason.  If not.. toss it!  The real reason you want to keep it may be silly or not even make sense when you actually stop to think about it.
From what you don’t have:  I actually keep Pinterest boards of things that i see that i think are cute, or I want to copy basically.  This could help you as you plan out your wardrobe/style and shopping for the next season.
See my Pinterest boards for my whole family here!
3.  WHAT DO WE NEED?::
          Is there anything that we just need to complete our wardrobe this next season?  Did you just tear your rain boots and need a new pair? Did you kids grow out of all their jeans or rip holes in them?
Did you lose your favorite jacket?  Figure out what you need, add it to a list…
 4.  SHOPPING TIME!!::
Make a list of what you actually need so you’re not just buying whatever catches your eye!  Simplicity  and not just buying crap will make you feel better, I promise 🙂
Take your pictures or ideas of looks you want to copy and  go online, in the store, or on one on one dates with the kiddos.. however you like to do it, Go get your goods so you don’ have to shop for a few more months!

Capsule Wardrobe: Infants!

Babiessss, man. They take up more gear than adults ya know?
I remember when we had Evan, who will be 9 next month. I literally had to mourn the whole process of leaving the house.  I used to be able to leave in 20 seconds.  Grab my purse, phone, wallet and jump in the car.
When you have a baby, you make sure they are fed… in a clean diaper, and going to be happy in the car for whatever amount of time you will be trapped in a small box with them.  On top of that, where you’re going matters… Do I need toys, gear, extra outfits ? bottles… nursing gear?  I will just say now, having a baby and trying to live minimally is going to be a pull in may directions.
Sooooo, if you’re a mother, caretaker, father or are ever around babies… you know they take a lot of gear.  So welcome to this post,  and series  “What does a baby realllly need?”
This first post is on clothes.  And since I am on my fourth kid, I am going to say, I may have something to share about this, but also may not because I forget things a lot.  SO here we go, what does a baby really need and why?
 
Here is what I am going to prepare with upon bringing Jack baby home from the hospital.  I am hoping this small wardrobe will be good for him for 0-6 months.    I will update you as time passes to let you know if it worked or not, but I am going super minimal and see if it works.
Either way, I promise you, you need way less than you think you do clothing wise in general. Even with babies.
  Jack Baby’s Newborn Capsule Wardrobe::
10 onesises (long or short or both sleeved):: Seasonal obviously.
4  Pants:: Based on the season, you can do thin ones for summer or thicker fleece/sweats for winter.
4  Pajamas:: Unrelated to practicality- baby pajamas are the cutest.
4  Outfits
10 pairs of socks-:: hese things get lost like it’s their job, .
2 hats :: I am doing one warmer hat since he is due in October and one thinner normal hat.
2 mittens.:: Mostly for those first few months when they just want to scratch their eyeballs out.

What’s Up What’s Up?

Been gone for a while, but am returning to the blog, and the capsuling, and the documentation of life. 🙂

What’s been going on in Istanbul… welll…

I’m 30 weeks pregnant. So there’s a little something. 😉

 

March
Easter
Mother’s Day
July sometime 😉

 

 

We have had a crazy summer, with  extended family health issues, two trips to America, a 10th anniversary getaway to Italy, pregnancy and life with 3 kids in a big city.

I am back though, and excited, and ready to capsule some maternity wardrobes… baby outfits, and even talk minimalist living with 4 kids, one of which is a newborn.

We all know newborns can accumulate a lot of stuff, so join me as I figure out how to do this thing.  Any favorite things or items I have to buy for the 4th baby?

I feel the need to have less stuff for this kid, then I ever did for the other ones.  He just needs, clothing, food and love right??

 

Fall Refresh// Summer Reflections

It’s fall in Istanbul, and I’m refreshing not only my blog, but our wardrobes.  So far, it’s been a warm fall, but it is supposed to get colder next week… so I am looking forward to bundling up in sweaters and napping with my baby girl in the afternoons!

We had an amazing summer in California with family and friends and are back to the grind, working, schooling, city-life-ing it up.  Here are some wardrobe reflections on summer, and a few pictures since my blog game was down while we were running all over California squeezing in every last minute with loved ones.

Reflections on our Summer Wardrobes, if I could do it again (and notes for next year):

-Too many clothes for the kids.  37 pieces was way too much, especially in California when we were either swimming or lounging.  At this point, especially for the boys, 37 pieces was a little excessive.  In trying to not be too legalistic, considering I named my ever loving blog after the pieces in our wardrobe, I will be lowering the number of items in each of their wardrobes this fall.  #rule-breaker

-Kim::  Too many shorts.  Not enough tank tops, bathing suits or accessories.  I realized while back in the good ol US of A, that I preferred to wear dresses over shorts, and bought way too many for my summer wardrobe.  Oh well.  Next time, I know better.  Also, didn’t have enough tanks, or proper accessories.  Learning, learning.

-Derek::  No complaints. No worries. One bathing suit did him just fine.  #men

Cheers.  One last iced coffee (maybe), before the cool weather hits!

img_3059.jpg

Can I also say, for one second that I am so excited for fall?

I think everyone thinks this likely, buuut I am from Southern California, and it is still 90 degrees there.  They will likely see fall for one or two weeks in November or December, and are all probably acting shocked (like this doesn’t happen every year), that it is still hot now.

I can’t wait to bring on the scarves, turtlenecks, boots, and PUMPKIN SPICE LATTES.  #basic.

 

Xo

 

Old Clothes: How to Part with them

So, you have piles and bags of black trash bags full of clothes, bags, shoes and worn out, or too small kid items.

You’ve gone through all The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up… and bagged up what doesn’t give you life.

partingwitholdclothes

What do you do with them now?  Here are some ideas I have had… along with ideas I am going to try!

  1. Donate them to be re-sold, and make a few bucks toward the growing stock by using Thred Up.  (I have purchased from here before, but just sent in my first bags to be sold, I’ll let you know how it goes!)
  2. If you have time and energy to re-sell them on e-bay, do it!
  3. If you had invested in quality clothes you can also try doing an Instagram sale.  (Tips on having an Instagram sale).
  4. Hand them down to someone your size, or with kids younger than yours.
  5. Send them to your local goodwill, or thrift store.  Someone will love them, and buy them for cheap!

 

Any other fun or creative ideas out there?

Nora’s Summer Capsule Wardrobe:: Toddler Girls

Baby girls clothes, they just about put me over the edge they are so cute!  Dressing a girl is fun, and while she has her preferences which can be quite strong, we have managed to only have a few small fights over clothes.  She’s 2 people.  2 years old and arguing with me about what she wants to wear.  Ok, counseling issues aside, here is what you can find my baby girl running around California in this summer.
Here is Nora’s Summer Capsule Wardrobe::
ToddlerGirl-Summer
13 t shirts or tank tops: 1.tulip striped pink tank 2.teal tank 3.popsicle tank 4.black graphic tank 5.black t strap tank 6.water color tie tank 7. blue anglaise 8. coral embroidery 9. striped henley 10. grey henley 11.  Istanbul t shirt 12. flower shirt navy  13. blue embellished tank
2 long sleeve shirts: 14. ballerina 15. chambray button up
2 swim suits:  23. red, white & blue stripes  24.teal ruffle swim suit
1 swim cover up: 25. swim cover up
1 sweater: 26. side zip sweatshirt
5 shorts:  27. pull on print  28. jean   29. pink denim   30.jersey shorts  31.bubble shorts
4 rompers:  32.. pink denim overalls  33.. neon coral   34. gauze romper 35. chambray romper
2 pants:   36. light grey leggings  37. pink coral leggings

 

 

Eli’s Summer Capsule Wardrobe:: Toddler Boys

Summer time is here!  We are getting ready to head from Istanbul to the great old USA, so you may notice I went crazy with the red, white and blue this summer in our capsules.  Nothing like declaring your love for your country than a Summer Capsule Wardrobe planned around the flags colors.  Ha!
Hopefully I can post some on our travels and time in California.  For now, this is what Eli is wearing this summer!
Here is Eli’s Summer Capsule Wardrobe::
ToddlerBoy-Summer
9 shirts:   1. american pocket t  2. striped neon tank  3.  red pocket henley  4.  red, white & blue striped henley 5. grey & white striped pocket  t 6.grey basic t shirt 7. Palm Springs  8.blue pocket 9. Giants tank
2 polos:    10.red polo 11. navy polo
2 long sleeve:  12. bw striped henley  13. baseball t
1 collared shirt:  14. chambray button up
2 sweaters:  15. American flag  16. grey quilted zip up
3 shoes:  17. adidas sneaker  18.  swim flip flop  19. birkenstock
2 rash guards:  20. whale rashguard  21. long sleeve rashguard
2 swim suits: 22.  striped trunks  23. red trunks
4 lounge shorts:   24. grey athletic   25. black sweat   26. blue sweat   27. red sweat
6 shorts:   28. hurley khaki  29.  seersucker  30. blue roll cuff  31. jean roll cuff  32.grey & blue stripe  33..canvas black cutoffs
2 lounge sweats:  34. camouflage  35. lightening
2 pants:  36. skinny  37.  light grey skinny