I'm Saving BIG with Member’s Mark Advantage Infant Formula by Erin Baynham

Tracking Pixel Note: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Member’s Mark® Advantage® Infant Formula. All opinions are honest and sincere.

When it comes to my son's health, as you can imagine, I want him to have the best. I breastfeed nightly, and give the baby formula while he's at daycare. Every time we ran out of formula, I would cringe at the thought of buying more. It was just so pricey! This campaign prompted me to try Member’s Mark Advantage Infant Formula. I've been a Sam's Club member for years, and it makes a lot of sense for me to try their brand of formula.

Member's Mark® Advantage® Infant Formula Review

Cam and I went to the store to get this together. This is a HUGE deal for me. In his two month lifespan, he's only been to family's homes, the doctor and a kid's birthday party. I've been terrified to take him to a store because I've thought of every scenario I didn't want to go through--mostly him going nuts. But ya know what, I told myself to build a bridge and get over it. He's a kid, and stuff happens. But look, we did it!

shopping at sams

When we got to the aisle, the box automatically caught my eye. We're a household with plenty of bills. Anything that's going to save us that much money is worth a look!

Member's Mark® Advantage® Infant Formula Review

Member’s Mark Advantage Infant Formula is designed for babies to consume from birth to 12 months old, helping brain and eye development as well as overall essential growth. When I read that pediatricians and experts agree that store brand formulas like Member’s Mark Infant Formula product line offer high quality formula at an economic advantage, I was even more eager to try it. You can make about 87 4 fl. oz. bottles in one formula tub. That's WAY more than I was getting with my other formula. One of the biggest kicks, as I found out when I got to the store, was Sam's Club members saved $500 buying Member’s Infant Formula products compared to Similac and Enfamil. That's A LOT of savings. They have a handy formula finder that helps determine the right formula from the line for your baby, and you can even try the savings calculator to see how much you can save with Member’s Infant Formula!

Member's Mark® Advantage® Infant Formula Review

The tub is much larger than my other one. I typically spend about $26 for a 22 ounce tub of formula, but this is $23 for 48 oz. That's insane savings!  Also--How brilliant is it that there's a scoop holder on the side?! I hate getting formula in my finger nails when I have to dig it out of the powder itself. My husband even said he wishes they'd do something like this in his protein shake tubs.

It's been about four days, and we've been using this formula exclusively. I've set up the subscription through so we get a new tub every three weeks. We couldn't be more pleased with this formula, and I'm so glad we found out about it!

Note: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Member’s Mark Advantage Infant Formula.

I'm Scrapbooking: Project Life Basics and Starter Post by Erin Baynham

I received a lot of great baby shower gifts for baby Cam; clothes, sheets, books, etc. One of the gifts I'm most excited about is Project Life. In a nutshell, Project Life is a way of memory keeping or scrapbooking that uses plastic pockets (similar to a photo book) and journaling cards to capture memories. I was given a 6 X 8 book and three packs of 12 4x6 photo pockets, to start.

I was absolutely clueless about how to get started, so the resources I depended on were this basics post by Elise Cripe, FAQs by Kelsey Especially and videos by Fabulously Creative and Kelly Purkey. I couldn't stop looking at Azzari Jarrett's (see image above) spreads. I followed all of the scrapbooking companies and looked at several hashtags for inspiration. Once I fully wrapped my mind around the process, I jumped on the website to find an assortment of core packs, mini packs, etc. Bad news.

Don't do what I did If you want to be smart with your money, plan your memory keeping experience by using your own photos first. Think about the themes for each book, and use what you've got! I did it all wrong. I bought and bought and bought. Do NOT do this. I think it's smarter to start off with actual photos, since those are the memories that you will cherish most. As it turns out, my favorite kits are the Midnight and Everyday editions. If I could do it all again, I would have only purchased these two kits. You don't have to purchase the kits at all, but they add a creative touch to the books. 

FYI, I paid full price for nothing. I found most of these kits at Michael's and Joann, which have 40% and 50% coupons basically every week. The other items came from sales on the Becky Higgins website. (Note: Once I found out about the digital kits, I did purchase three kits for $4, regular price.  Oh, and the 7P page protectors were also full price, $4. But really, that's it.)

My arsenal, so far, includes:

Kits  Midnight Edition Core Kit Everyday Edition Core (Partial kit, From Etsy. I bought 2 for $10, but I like this edition A LOT. Kind of wish I just bought the core edition, but ended up purchasing some of it digitally. We'll see how that goes. ) Dreamy Edition Core (Which I'm not really crazy about. The color and scheme isn't really doing it for me.) Southern Weddings Value Kit (Still not sure how I'm going to use this. We don't have a wedding book, so I might do one) Baby Boy Value Kit  Inspire Value Kit Be Fearless Value Kit 

Digital  Project 52 2016 Complete Baby boy journaling cards Everyday filler cards

12 X 12 (Cameron's baby book) Clementine Cloth book Big Variety Pack 1 (60 pages in a variety of layouts)

6 X 8 (Project Life/Personal Journal) Tribal book 4X6 pack (three) 7P Handbook 6x8 Page Protector Multipack (4 Ring) 7P Handbook 6x8 Page Protector 3x4 Pockets (4 ring)

Don't judge me. 

To simplify the process, there's a Project Life app that basically lets you do everything conveniently from your phone. I've played around with this just a bit, but I've purchased enough to use what I already have.

Over the next few weeks and months, I'll share the spreads from the books that I'm working on. I'd like to use the 6x8 book that I received for Project Life, as well as a personal journal. I'll try to start in March, but if that doesn't work out, I'll give it a whirl in May, the month of my 31st birthday.

Baby's First Month: The Happiest and Hardest Month of My Life by Erin Baynham

first month with baby My first month as a mother was by far the happiest and most difficult time of my life. All of a sudden, that little baby that you've been carrying in your tummy for all those months is in your arms, looking into your eyes. It's the greatest thrill, and the highest honor. Every moment is precious. And on the flip side, you're thrown right into the night feedings, diaper changes and the balance between your old life and new life. As I said in Cam's one week update, you can read all the books and listen to as many people as you want, your experience will be your own, and nothing can prepare you for this.

I think I was honestly a little delusional about what the first few weeks would be like. I thought I'd feed him, change him and let him sleep just like I read in Baby Wise. I thought he'd easily sleep in his bassinet, and I'd be able to cook, blog, clean and scrapbook as much as I needed to. Nope, not for me. I felt like I was holding him constantly for hours a day, keeping me from handling what I need to get done. The hours would pass and I'd accomplish nothing but caring for my baby boy. It took me almost five weeks, but I'm putting him down much more and handling business.

As you can imagine, the hardest part is waking up in the middle of the night to take care of baby. I'm delirious for the first few minutes, but I eventually snap out of it to change and feed baby. One thing that has helped is packing snacks to have by the night stand. My faves are Dole fruit, Ritz crackers and iced tea. I use this bottle warmer, which has a super convenient cooler that holds two bottles. No more running up and down the stairs while I'm half asleep with a screaming baby on my chest! I usually keep the TV on all night so I have a form of constant light. It's usually on mute, and I'll play white noise on the Spotify app.

It takes awhile to get into a groove. Trust me, there were some bad days. My lowest moment came when Cameron got a cold, which I'm pretty sure he caught from his dad and I. To hear your baby constantly cough and seem miserable, and to know there's no medicine that you can give him--it's torture. I cried and cried. It broke my heart. During that time, Cameron went five days without a BM. He would strain and his tummy was rock hard. More crying from me. I was seriously going crazy. But as the days went on, we all felt better, and then I became a much happier mom.

I lost twenty pounds during pregnancy, and for some funny reason, I thought I'd have it back right after pregnancy. Wrong! Breastfeeding definitely isn't helping me pack on the pounds, either. I'm not into my new body at all. I honestly avoid mirrors because the hips, thighs and butt that I used to have are completely gone. I barely recognize myself. When I start work again, I have no idea what I'll wear because my pre-pregnancy wardrobe literally hangs off my body. But the only way to snap back is to take action. I'll be incorporating as many calories as I can to get me back to my pre-pregnancy weight of 150-155 pounds. I also have to get on track with a better diet, because my sugary latte and obsession with chocolate chip cookies shouldn't be huge parts of Cam's diet.

You also have to remember that it truly takes a village. There's no way I could do this alone. My husband seems to always swoop in at the right time, taking the baby and making him feel like a piece of gold. He even surprised me by contacting my bestie and telling her I needed a break desperately, so she showed up at my door and we went out for a few hours. (That was one of the sweetest things he's done for me in our marriage. He had no idea how badly I needed that. I shed a few happy tears that night.) I also spend a lot of time at my moms house, and she's been a colossal help. I've been able to take naps, run errands and have personal time. Text messages with Brittany of Clumps of Mascara got me over some serious hurdles too.

And while I've tried to be honest in this post and tell you about a lot of ups and downs, I love every single thing about my baby boy. Every ringlet, every cry, every boogie, every fidget and stank diaper. He has absolutely changed my life, making me rethink the little things and strive for more forever.