I wanted to take a moment to introduce you to some new friends I’ve made during the past 8 1/2 months. Maybe you can become friends with them too, they sure were good to me!

Craigslist is my friend. I’ve found so many great things on Craigslist, let’s start with maternity clothes. I am so incredibly frugal, it was hard for me even consider paying the exorbitant prices that stores wanted for clothes that would be worn for less than six months. I turned to Craigslist and found loads and loads of great clothes for just a fraction of what I would have paid at full price, some things for only a dollar or two a piece. Buying the majority of my clothes on Craigslist at huge discounts (and of great quality, I might add), made me feel better about buying just a few things at retail sale prices when I needed to or wanted to. I have bought very few items new and don’t feel like I missed out on anything by doing so. Plus, it helped us to save some money that can go towards the IVF bills that we’re still paying off. But Craigslist isn’t only good for maternity clothes. I bought a couple of cloth diapers off of Craigslist, one of them used only a couple of times, and one of them brand new, for less than half of retail prices. Even the co-sleeper that my parents bought us came from Craiglist (at my insistence) at a steep, steep savings. There are so many great things to be had on Craigslist, I feel somewhat guilty when we buy or are given things that are brand new. In fact, Craigslist made registering for baby items really, really difficult for me. It was hard to scan a brand new Bumbo and play tray for nearly $50 when I knew I could pick one up a used one in great condition on Craigslist for $25. It was hard for me to open the $70 swing my sister bought us knowing that I could likely find one for $30 or less on Craigslist. So many of the “necessities” are just not used for very long and it seems like such a waste to invest in for the short period of time that they will actually be used, if used at all. I will definitely be turning to Craigslist again when it comes time to buy the bigger baby things, like exersaucers and high chairs. Craigslist is my friend.

Ranitidine is my friend. For a long time I dealt with the heartburn reactively, popping Tums when I needed them. Then a girl in my birthing class told me how great the over the counter acid reducers worked for her. My husband had been pushing me to try them for a while (he takes acid reducing medicine on a daily basis), so with the two of them giving such glowing recommendations, and with my OB’s approval, I took the plunge. Oh how I love you, Ranitidine. This stuff completely eliminated all of my discomfort and any need for Tums completely. About a week and a half ago, I ran out. I decided to make sure that it was safe for breastfeeding before buying more and discovered that it wasn’t as safe as other medications like generic Tagamet. So sadly I said my farewells to Ranitidine and picked up a package of Tagamet instead. Oh Ranitidine, how I miss you. The Tagamet is far better than nothing at all, but definitely does not hold a candle to my beloved Ranitidine. If you are struggling to keep your heartburn under control, I cannot recommend Ranitidine enough. Ranitidine is my friend.

The swimming pool is my friend. Way back when my friend Jill miraculously got pregnant on her own after two IVF pregnancies that ended in miscarriage, she started going to a prenatal exercise class. It was both land and water based, but she really appreciated the water part of the class the most and talked often about how great she thought it was. Of course I fully intended on taking said class once I finally got knocked up, but like most things I fully intended on doing once I finally got knocked up, it just didn’t happen. It wasn’t until 22 weeks that I got in the pool for the first time and that was just a quick swim during an overnight hotel stay. It was heavenly though, and definitely served as a reminder that I wanted to sign up for the prenatal exercise class. Of course I completely forgot about it and didn’t go swimming again until we visited my in-laws in Florida at 29 weeks. I remember thinking to myself how I MUST sign up for the class when I got back into town, which of course I never did. I was 36 weeks when my chiropractor asked if I’d been swimming to help turn the baby that I finally got back in the pool again. The pool is divine. The pool takes away all of the extra weight and the result is heavenly. To just be able to float without all of the pressure and compression felt on land is a feeling unlike anything else. The pool let me once again move my body without feeling as though all of my muscles were completely atrophied. I felt like a regular woman again, despite the enormous belly I was sporting. A leisurely float in the pool, enjoying the water sliding across my body…the pool is definitely my friend.