Welcome to the Homestead!


Hi, my name is Jessica May. I’m a mom of 7 crazy kiddos, baker, blogger, and much more! I love Swimming in the river, hiking the Hill Country, paddling, tubing, surfing, flying, and spending time with my family at home or on the road. We live on a small farm in Boerne, Texas. We have lots of animals, and we love to garden. We are passionate about conservation and sustainable living and farming practices.

Ditch the Baby Shower! 10 Gift Ideas for a Postpartum Party! I Hill Country Homestead Texas

Ditch the Baby Shower! 10 Gift Ideas for a Postpartum Party! I Hill Country Homestead Texas

Baby showers have always been a tradition when anticipating the arrival of a new baby. The final get together before the newborn arrives can be a delight for ladies to unwind, relax together and swoon over tiny socks and outfits that will soon clothe the tiny new person. I know those last few weeks of pregnancy are HARD and a baby shower is a nicety to help mother prepare in advance for baby. The newest thing catching popular attention is Postpartum parties, a way to support and love on the new Mama once the baby has arrived and the reality of the new role is setting in and wearing on little sleep and constant need. Mainstream news channels are encouraging patrons to ditch the baby shower and give what every new mom needs, a Postpartum party. Makes sense to me! Considering we are headed into the holiday season, I put together a list of products I have been using in my personal postpartum journey that make great gift ideas for mom’s to be or loved ones. I use these items daily to keep myself healthy, rested, relaxed and pampered as I adjust to life after pregnancy.

1. Shiatsu Back Massage Chair With Heat

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This Shiatsu massage chair has TWELVE massaging nodes, heat, remote control and a car adapter!!! This is the first on the list because this has been the biggest game changer for me. I can’t stop ‘doing’. If I’m not taking care of the baby I feel the urgency to check as many things off my list as I can. Whoever said ‘sleep when the baby sleeps was unrealistic and didn’t run a homestead. My need to continue ‘doing’ even on the continual brink of complete and utter exhaustion, leads to physical stress which I’m sure any mother can relate to. I tend to store this stress in my muscles; neck, shoulders, and back. Throw in nursing a newborn intermittently all throughout the day and chasing two toddlers tails, Mama hurts!

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3. Doterra

This is a no brainier. Essential oil’s have so many physical healing benefits and one of them is that they just make you feel better. No one can be educated enough on essential oils and it can’t be done in one paragraph. If you haven’t chosen sides yet between Doterra and Young Living you should. If you happen to choose team Doterrra, I’m here for you. Let me help if I can, message me. We could always choose to grow and produce our own essential oils here on the homestead but this is something we choose to still outsource, and I make a little side money for the house by doing it that way. Mom win.

4. A New Pair of Glasses

I think every Mom mourns the loss of the convenience of showering, am I right? I can No longer wake up, shower, get my makeup done all while I drink my coffee. I have to be ready to go at the crack of dawn and sometimes I don’t even get a split second to pee before the requests and squeals start rolling in for the day, let alone time to put in a pair of contacts. Glasses are key to rushing into action, pouring two cereal bowls one handed while nursing and infant. You have to be able to see in situations like this. Take notice if the new Mama has outdated frames and offer to place an order. A modern stlye of frame can be enough to get a new Mama feeling like her pre-baby self again. I have loved having a pair of glasses to throw on when we are zero to sixty in the morning. I got mine here from Firmoo.

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2. The Joovy Boob and the Joovy Boob Diamond

Don’t they just look like diamonds?! They are SO iridescent. These glass bottles are so dreamy and an essential item for any postpartum Mama. You can pop the entire bottle in the freezer with milk in the bottle and take the bottle straight out of the freezer and to the warmer with no transfer from milk bag to bottle or plastic waste! A must have for every crunchy Mama or anyone looking to reduce their waste footprint. We are not even close to being a no waste family but we are always striving to do better and do more. I love looking classy while conserving also! These bottles are so sexy and sleek. They come with a silicone bottle cover which makes it shatter resistant but I just love how natural they look out of their bottle covers and in all their glassy beauty. Joovy is a very cool and innovative company. Their products are designed with parent’s needs in mind. Definitely a company worth checking out!

5. Ozonated Carrier Oils

These oils seem to be popping up everywhere online and rightfully so. The oil is able to stabilize oxygen and when you use the oil it delivers oxygen more effectively to your skin, reducing fine lines and wrinkles and making the skin healthier. I make my own at home and they charge a pretty penny for it also so if you end up with a jar, use it sparingly or learn to make your own. Definitely get some one way or another because your skin will literally thank you. My favorite one to use online is from Dr. Jess here.

6. A Dry Brush

The idea is to have a nice bristled brush with a handle and you dry brush your skin to promote blood circulation and reduce the appearance of cellulite. This is an ancient Ayurvedic practice and the proof is in the pudding. If you try this you will notice a complete change in skin color as you activate your blood cells and get them moving and working faster and more efficiently. If your giving the gift of rest and relaxation, be sure to include a beautifully crafted dry skin brush. You can read more about the benefits of dry brushing here.

7. Epsom

Epsom salt is such a powerful and effective ingredient. Left alone in it’s bag the salt isn’t much to look at but Epsom salt makes an amazing base to many DIY Spa and Bath gifts. I took Epsom baths daily leading up to labor and delivery and returned to them quickly postpartum. Aside from regular massage, I have not found a natural remedy as powerful and effective as Epsom Salt. Some of my favorite inspo ideas come from Martha Stewart here and the Soap News here.

8. Blood Pressure

This seems a little strange but this isn’t something new Mom’s think to buy for themselves. Blood pressure is one of those vital signs they keep a close eye on after pregnancy and it stops when you leave the hospital. Adjusting to life when the new baby comes home can be a lot of work and very stressful for a new Mama on top of impending house work and anything else that was put on hold leading up to baby. It’s safe and comforting to check your blood pressure quickly at home. I had some complications postpartum and had to keep a very close eye on my blood pressure at home. This model was fool proof and did the trick.

9. Organize a Meal Train

This was one of the most helpful and beneficial gifts I received after having my last baby. My Church small group organized it and it made meal time a dream for the first two weeks. People could sign up through the app for a day to deliver a meal to the family of the newborn. Mealtime was stress free and no cleanup needed. It made it so easy to just focus on baby and being a family in those precious first weeks. It allowed us as parents to sit everyone down as a family and enjoy time together even while we were still adjusting to a new family member. SUCH a blessing! Visit here for the Meal Train website!

10. Be a Helping Hand

Too often the gift of a helping hand is overlooked. Some of the most helpful times for me in the past is when someone just held the baby for me so I had two free arms to pee and throw the latest round of spit up rags into the laundry. My sister came and deep cleaned my bathrooms as a gift to me. It was so wonderful. Offer to babysit while mom takes a nap, and look for things to do that she might have trouble doing for herself during this trying time. I think this gift idea rings true to any gift giving situation in life. Acts of kindness and acts of service are awesome gift giving opportunities that are often overlooked and it’s time they made a comeback!

Organic and Eco Friendly Cleaning Essentials I Hill Country Homestead Texas

Organic and Eco Friendly Cleaning Essentials I Hill Country Homestead Texas

Working from Home with Toddlers I Montessori at Home

Working from Home with Toddlers I Montessori at Home