Breast to bottle: Why I made the switch

There’s a crazy amount of pressure put on new moms to breastfeed. Believe me, I experienced it first hand. Women are made to feel inadequate if they don’t succeed with it, which is definitely not what a new mom should be worrying about. We all know the phrase “breast is best,” it’s on all the handouts from the hospital and it’s all over the internet as well, only putting more pressure on moms to “tough it out.”

I toughed it out for 8 days. For 8 days, I went through the pain, engorgement, latching problems, sleepless nights, the tears. And I wonder if I would have saved myself from the physical and emotional pain that came with breastfeeding if I wasn’t doing it because it was what I was “supposed to do.” Every time I fed my son (which was sometimes as often as every 45 minutes) I would cry out from the toe curling pain from his latch, even though I was doing everything that the lactation consultant told me to do.

I was also dealing with recovery from delivery. I could hardly sit down without being in a tremendous amount of pain. I had zero appetite, and would go until 5pm before realizing I should probably eat something. Even going to the bathroom was a 20 minute task- with the pain of going and cleaning up- it was like a crime scene in there. (Sorry- but I feel like everyone needs to know just what women go through.)

I was miserable. I was not enjoying this sweet time with my newborn like all these other moms were. I cried every day. And I cried when I fed my baby his first formula bottle, because I felt as though I had failed. I remember googling to try and find some support for moms like me who switched to formula and finding hardly anything. Why is society shaming moms for doing what is best?

My son is almost 7 weeks old, and he now has a mom who is happy, more in the moment, and better rested to be there for him. My baby is also happier, gaining the weight he’s supposed to, and is doing great with formula feeding. I do not regret making the switch. And no mother should. We need to normalize moms who formula feed because of latch issues, or because of poor supply, or because they simply just don’t want to. It’s not only their choice, but it’s also no one else’s business.

I hope any moms that are reading this can feel reassured that they made the right choice for their baby, and to not kick themselves for choosing to stop their breastfeeding journey. Just remember- fed is best!

Getting ready for baby: Packing our overnight hospital bag

We’re now 20 weeks pregnant with our little guy and can’t wait to welcome him into the family! As the day gets closer, we’re accomplishing some tasks to make sure we’re as ready as possible. We’re doing everything from planning nursery themes to onesie shopping to reading parenting books. You can never be too prepared, right?!

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One of the first things we’re accomplishing is packing an overnight hospital bag. We decided to head over to our local Kmart to pick up some essential items to help us through the labor and delivery process. Here’s what we’ve packed so far!

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We’re packing everything in this awesome five-piece diaper bag – we’re all about using things for multiple purposes and being frugal, so this is perfect for us.

This is just the beginning of our overnight hospital bag. We’ll be adding some more essentials we get closer to our due date. If you’re a parent and have any suggestions for us, feel free to let us know in the comments below!

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Thanks to Kmart for helping us out as we get ready to welcome our baby boy into the world!

The BEST dog food for picky eaters

Ever since we brought Zira home in November 2017, she’s been a picky eater. She would literally rather eat leaves than dog food.

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During those first few weeks, she would only eat food out of our hands. She’s nearly 2 years old now and it’s been a consistent struggle to get her to eat enthusiastically. We’ve tried numerous dog food brands, mixing wet food in with dry food, and we even had a period of a few months of making chicken, rice, and veggies to mix in with her food. She would be excited about these new things for a little bit, but would always go back to her usual ways of protesting her meals.

We’re so happy to say that we FINALLY discovered a food that Zira loves! It was a completely random find – we got a sample bag of this freeze-dried raw food at a pet store that we’ve only gone to a few times. We decided to mix it in with her kibble to see how she liked it. Turns out, she’s obsessed! When she kept scarfing it down, we immediately ordered another bag and it’s been smooth sailing for about 2 months now. She’s excited about eating every day, which is such a miracle!

The food is Sojos Turkey Recipe.

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It’s the only thing that’s gotten Zira to be excited about the words “breakfast” and “dinner.” Plus, it’s super easy to use. All we do is mix it with water and add some of her kibble to it, and voila! You would never guess she’s a picky eater anymore.

You can get it from Amazon in a 4 oz. trial bag, 1.75 lb bag, or 7 lb bag.

Plus, it’s Amazon Prime Day so it’s the perfect chance to try them out!

As an Amazon Affiliate, we earn from qualifying purchases.

Zira and Ellie are going to be big sisters!

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You guys, IT’S HAPPENING! We are filled with so much emotion as we share this news with everyone. We are SO excited to welcome a new member into our family (yes, a human one)!

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This is by far our greatest adventure yet, even though our lives have been full of them – from Jesse moving 3,000 miles to live in California, to being pet parents to the best animals in the world, to double-proposing to each other at Disneyland.

Zira and Ellie are going to be the best big sisters!! They’ll have plenty of new duties, including food testing, toy testing, teaching the baby how to play, and serving as guard dogs!

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We can’t wait for this new addition to our family to enter our lives. We’ll provide you all with updates as we prepare to welcome our baby into the world!

We adopted a cat and she’s THRIVING! | National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day

Today is National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day and we wanted to share our adoption story! Last year, we made one of the best decisions of our lives: We adopted a cat! It’s one of the most rewarding things we have ever done. Here’s the story:

We went to The SPCA of Monterey County in November of 2018 and instantly fell in love with this face:

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She immediately accepted chin scratches and started purring like crazy. It was like she knew we were meant to be together. Plus, she had similar physical attributes to Zira (blue eyes and a pink nose with black spots!). We just COULDN’T resist! So we made an on-the-spot decision to adopt this beautiful cat and name her Purrdita (named after Perdita from 101 Dalmatians).

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The only thing we knew about her is that she was found on the streets, was estimated to be 3 years old, and the SPCA originally gave her the name Cecilia. Other than that, we knew nothing else about her story. But she just seemed like the perfect cat — and we were right! Apparently she loves living in our home too. Just take a look at how much she’s transformed since November of 2018:

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Purrdita has gotten so fluffy and looks so much healthier. It’s so rewarding to nurture her and watch her live a happy life. She has the best temperament too. She always greets us with the cutest meows. Our lives are so much better with her!

Her and the dogs were a little wary of each other at first, but now they get along great! Zira cleans her ears, Ellie plays with her, and all 3 of them sleep on the couch together. Just take a look at the three of them in this video:

Long story short, we highly recommend adopting a pet when you can. Visit your local shelters and find a pet that’s in need. You’ll get rewarded with so much happiness – we promise!

Can you watch our proposal without saying “Wow?!”

If you ever frequent YouTube, chances are you’ve seen at least one video from FBE’s “React” series – their channel has over 18 million subscribers. Well, our proposal video was featured in one of their recent episodes! It’s the first one shown to the participants in the video. Can you pass the challenge by not saying “Wow”?! We can’t even do that!

Let us know how you did in the comments!

Zira & Ellie the Corgis named as top pet influencers

Zira & Ellie are among the top dogs of social media influencers according to Webfluential, an online platform that helps brands find relevant social influencers. Here’s what they had to say about our beloved pups and the rise of pet influencers in general:

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“Zira is 5/8 Pembroke Welsh Corgi and 3/8 Miniature Australian Shepherd. Ellie is Zira’s half-sister. The Donovan’s, Zira and Ellie’s humans post pictures and videos of their daily lives and adventures with their beloved corgi mixes.”

“Influencer Marketing is not just for humans anymore. In the last year, dogs have made a mark on the influencer marketing industry. These days it is almost impossible to scroll through your Instagram feed without seeing a cute doggo. Some of these dogs have been collaborating with huge brands and making hundreds of thousands of dollars.”

We’re honored to be featured by Webfluential in this list of amazing dogs!

If you’re interested in Zira & Ellie telling your brand’s story, email us at zirathecorgi@gmail.com

Check out Webfluential’s full blog post.