The Ultimate Wish List for Your Entire Pregnancy

I’ve been pregnant quite a few times over the last 19 years (I can’t believe it’s been that many years!) and have learned that there are some things that my body and baby need from day one. I’ve compiled this list of items I can’t live without from first positive test and throughout my entire pregnancy. Do you have more favorites to add? Leave a comment and let us know what we should add to this list. Be sure to subscribe to our email list to receive new blogposts directly in your inbox.

Vitamins and Prenatals

There are a lot of prenatal vitamins to choose from. I moved to a prenatal with folate instead of folic acid when trying to conceive after Jimmie. According to American Pregnancy Association, “Folate and its cousin folic acid are vital for developing a healthy baby because it prevents neural tube defects. Since the neural tube develops within the first 28 days of pregnancy, it is recommended all women of childbearing years consume folate. Folate prevents certain heart abnormalities, cleft palate and cleft lip. It also lowers the risk of developing anemia, miscarriage, preterm delivery and low birth weight.” Folic Acid and Folate are both forms of B9. However, “there is an important difference. Folic acid is the synthesized version that is commonly used in processed foods and supplements.” I took folate separately before we conceived Jimmie and throughout my pregnancy.

In addition to taking Pink Stork prenatal with Folate available here, I also take Liposomal Vitamin D3 and Magnesium. Every time we’ve had my Vitamin D levels checked throughout my adult life, they’ve been low. Increased Vitamin D levels are important when trying to conceive and throughout pregnancy.

Belly, Dry Skin and Joint Help

Body Butter lotion. I tend to get dry skin and this is especially true when I’m pregnant. I love this ultra-rich spa quality lotion formulated with naturally-soothing ingredients including cocoa butter.

Body Butter Key Ingredients
• Theobroma cacao (cocoa) seed butter • Hydrogenated avocado oil
• Simmondsia chinensis (jojoba) seed oil • Caprylic/Capric triglyceride

Burt’s Bees Mama Belly Butter with Shea Butter and Vitamin E This lotion is my go to ease my stretching skin while baby and belly are growing. I use this every single night while pregnant and keep using it once baby is born. Burts Bees Mama Bee Belly Butter contains no phthalates, parabens, petrolatum, or SLS, and it wont irritate your skin so you can use this balm with peace of mind. Pamper yourself during your nine month stretch, or give as a gift to a new mama!

Liquid BioCell Life is the best collagen out there-by far, in my humble opinion. I love this Liquid Collagen when TTC and throughout pregnancy. It improves joint mobility and lubrication, reduces joint discomfort, increases skin’s collagen content, promotes healthy hair, nails, gums, eyes and so much more! I want to feel like my body is working well when I am trying to nourish a growing baby.

Belly Support

Maternity belly support, undies and leggings
Click here for links to Belly Support & Undergarments

Belly Band I like this Asotony Pregnancy Support Belt sold at WalMart. It’s breathable and something that I will wear once I am about six months pregnant and until delivery. I don’t like to wear it at night, but some women say that it works well while sleeping. I need the extra support when walking and moving around throughout the day.

Leggings Over the belly leggings are my favorite when pregnant. Seriously, I love the additional support and live in leggings for all of my pregnancy. They are especially helpful once the belly gets a little bigger. I also love them postpartum.

Pregnancy under the belly and over the belly underwear. The under the belly underwear are a necessity for those times when your belly is more exposed. I’m not talking about mid drift action. I’m speaking about times when you are wearing something that is tighter on the belly and you don’t want to see the line of your underwear across the top of your belly. I like support like these spanx and these spanx shorts too when I’m dressing up and want the underwear support for my belly.

Sleep Support

Pregnancy pillow I only got a pregnancy pillow with my rainbow baby pregnancy in 2019. I never used one with my previous pregnancies. Boy, was I missing out!? I had no idea what a game-changer the pregnancy pillow is. I have always been a tummy sleeper. But, the moment I am pregnant, I stop being able to sleep on my belly. It’s a mental thing for me. However, it’s been my favorite way to sleep for most of my life, so sleeping during pregnancy is a challenge. This pillow allows me to sleep with part of it between my legs and another part supporting my back. It also keeps me on my side, which is my preferred way to sleep when pregnant.

Maternity Clothes

Favorite Basic Dresses

ElMomma’s favorite dresses that grow as your bump grows. Perfect for bump progression pics, here are a few everyday styles that I love wearing when pregnant. I also think it’s really fun to have one dress or outfit that can grow with you and that you can wear your entire pregnancy. I also love these Overalls and think this is a super cute maternity look.

2017

Please let me know if you enjoyed this list by sharing on social media and commenting here. I would also love to hear what other products you recommend while pregnant and postpartum. Please comment here or join in the conversation on Instagram or Facebook. I love to hear from you! Wishing all of you who are TTC or expecting a Happy and Healthy 9 months! Xo

Our Miracle Baby. 🌈💙🙏🏼

The last two years have flown by and yet, as they say, the days have been very long. At this time, two years ago, we were 10 weeks pregnant. It would be three more weeks before we would have another ultrasound, learn we were expecting a baby girl and announce the pregnancy. Our Mary-Linda was on her way. But, having our healthy baby girl in our arms in January of 2018, never happened. In mid-August our Daughter’s heart stopped beating and we delivered her and held her in our arms way too soon. The pain and numbness we felt was like nothing I had ever experienced before. Loss of our daughter and the loss of every dream and hope for her life on earth. It nearly broke us. In fact, it did break us. 
We are not the same as we once were. Sometimes I think we battle with past perceptions of ourselves. But, the truth is, we are changed. We are not the same as we were before our daughter was born sleeping. Perhaps we are stronger now, more tender, gentler, more loving, tough? 
We are parents of a child in heaven. Our daughter died. And, we lived. It’s hard.
Over the next year, our outward and inward focus was on grieving, healing and figuring out how to move forward. How could we move forward with our baby girl in heaven?
So, we leaned in to God. We leaned in to family. We kept busy with work. That Fall, I wrote five new songs – one, as a cry to God after losing Mary-Linda and four songs during the season of advent. I continued to grieve outwardly, and share my experiences by writing. This really helped the healing process for me and I’ve continued to receive messages from grieving parents telling me how much this meant to them.
Exactly one year after losing Mary-Linda I experienced a chemical pregnancy and I found myself without a traditional job (I have plenty to do with four living children!) I hit rock bottom and yet, all I had to cling to was my family, friends and God. And, I knew peace. Such a strange experience to know a peace that just doesn’t make sense. But, I knew God had this. The very next month, we learned we were expecting again. I had the entire school year, while I was serving as PTO President, to just be pregnant and grow this sweet baby. We had two doctors overseeing this pregnancy. My care was so much better than my previous pregnancy. 
What a dream. I didn’t ask for this but the Lord knew what I needed. I needed to be surrounded by love and to care for my baby. And that’s exactly what I experienced. It has not been easy. There have been huge financial burdens on our family but somehow we have always been provided for. 
And, that brings me to this moment. 
Two years almost to the day since learning I was pregnant with Mary-Linda and I’m holding her baby brother. The relief. The peace. The grateful heart. It’s all there. Delivering a baby with a heartbeat. It was everything I dreamed it would be and so much more.

A case for a big age difference in kids

I grew up in a family that was mid-sized. Two parents and three kids. My oldest sibling, my brother, was thirteen when I was born. My sister was eight. I was a surprise. Not that my parents didn’t want more children, they just didn’t think it was possible given all the time that went by in between pregnancies.

We just shared via this video that we are expecting our 5th baby El in January. We are beyond thrilled. We spent a lot of time praying and hoping for this little baby. There will be 7 years between Leeland (our youngest) and the baby and almost 13 years between our oldest and youngest! Very similar age difference to my big brother and I.

My brother and I when I was in High School



I loved growing up with a brother who was thirteen years older. He gave me so much attention when I was little and it continued when he went to college. I missed him a ton when he graduated from high school. But, we stayed close. He saved me from many a near-crisis when I lived in Los Angeles. (Thank you, Michael!) Our relationship has only grown over the years and now we remain very close friends.

From the perspective of the older child(ren), I believe giving them this younger sibling is going to be an amazing growth opportunity. No, I am not expecting my children to mature overnight. But, I do believe this will help along a very natural progression in their maturity and development. None of my children were old enough to appreciate the miracle of life or really helping in the house when any of my babies were born. That is all going to be very different this time. They have no idea how much change is coming, but I believe they are going to be over the moon for this little one and we are all going to love having a new baby El in the house! 

39 weeks and 6 days

Tomorrow is our “due date!” I can’t believe we’re this close to meeting our newest little family member.

Did you know that fewer than 5% of babies are born on their due date? So, the odds are, we are not having a baby tomorrow. But, who knows? I have a tendency to try and go against the odds at times.

I’m feeling really well currently. I still have contractions a lot, but nothing REALLY painful has started yet. Trinity was born 3 days after her due date. I took the week off from yoga this week, because I really didn’t want to have the baby until I could come home to my new bedroom from the hospital. The painters finished today. So, I think I am in the clear to deliver and go home after! If I haven’t had him by Monday, I’ll resume my regular exercise routine (yoga 2-3 times a week) and running after small children. So, maybe that will convince him to come out and see us!

Me, our 21 month old daughter Trinity and Baby El4 at 39 weeks, 4 days