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Since I am currently pregnant with our third child, I found this article to be very insightful–and comforting!

Did you ever wonder if you become a bit dumber once you have children? Many women are concerned about losing their “intelligence” after having a baby as a result of being surrounded by milk bottles and diapers all the time. You must have heard stories about women putting nipple cream on their toothbrush and just being forgetful about many things. Childbearing does take a toll on your body and some feel on the mind as well. However, this is far from true. In fact, there is now evidence that suggests that giving birth does nothing but boost your brainpower so that you end up getting smarter post pregnancy.

What does this actually mean?

The “smartness” experienced by women post-pregnancy can be broken up into five categories, with each category supported by animal and, in some cases, human studies. The first category, which is perception, deals with the five senses and studies have shown that pregnant women have more advanced sense of smell and sight. What this means is that they are able to notice more things and are capable of sensing any unfavorable smells, both of which help them in protecting their baby.

Studies have also shown pregnant women to experience a boost in three other categories, resilience, motivation, and efficiency. Pregnant women are more fearless, get better at multitasking, and can also handle stress better. In fact, the hormone oxytocin, which is important for labor and breastfeeding, also boosts your ability to learn and memorize many new things.

The fifth category, emotional intelligence, is where mothers benefit the most. They gain the ability to see the world from someone else’s eyes. To be a good mother and understand your child better you automatically learn to broaden your mind and your perspective.

When you become a mother, you also learn to strategize and prioritize. You may have noticed new mothers exchanging information while their babies played. What they are actually doing is collecting each other’s experiences to make things easier for their own baby. This may include anything from teething troubles, bedwetting, the best school, the best daycare, and so on.

Things to do yourself to boost your brainpower

Even though there are many changes that automatically take place in your body to make you smarter during your pregnancy, there are some things you need to be careful about and consciously do to improve your brain power post pregnancy. Don’t be lazy to breastfeed your baby as the oxytocin hormone released during breastfeeding helps to calm you and bond better your baby. You are bound to be sleep-deprived, but make a time table or a schedule and ask your husband to help you out and share some of the sleepless nights with you. Getting adequate sleep will help in keeping your brain sharp and alert.

Just because you are pregnant does not mean you sit in one place and munch away. Engage yourself in some form of experience, but only after consulting your doctor. Eat fresh vegetables and fruits; studies have shown that these help in preventing decline in brain function. Don’t forget to socialize. Make friends with other new mothers. Join a mother-toddler group and share your experiences with each other. Not only will this help in better brain functioning but also helps in warding off postpartum depression.

Have a positive outlook

Lastly, new mothers or mothers-to-be must realize and appreciate the level to which your brain gets challenged by learning so many new things. Even if you feel exhausted, just concentrating on the amount of learning you are experiencing in such a short span of time, is enough to energize and keep you on your toes.

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About the author: Ellen Spencer is a blogger and writer. She is a health freak and very environmentally aware. These days she is busy in writing an article on Psoriatic arthritis. Beside this she loves reading. She is also a big fan of Baby Strollers.

After my first post last week about my son’s eczema, I realized that I should really start a separate blog for this topic. There are a lot of reasons for my decision, not the least of which is that I would like to target readers that might not be interested in all the other things I write about on this blog.

I went all out and bought a domain and everything. So go check out My Baby Has Eczema, and please share it with anyone who has a baby or young child with eczema!

Whenever something I post on that site is relevant to my readers here (for example, another installment in the story I started last week), I will post a link here on my blog, so you can follow it from here.

In the process of making the decision to start a completely separate blog, I learned some great information that any blogger who is thinking about a second blog should consider with regards to buying a new domain and the alternatives. I sent it to my favorite learning-about-blogging blog, Blogelina.com, and you can read it here.

Blogelina.com is a great resource for blogging moms. I find myself going there whenever I have questions about how to make my blog better. If you are a mom blogger, I recommend that you subscribe to her site. No matter what your goal in blogging is, there is something for everyone, which means there is something for you!

I never learned the art of couponing, so I have asked TJ from Measuringflower.com to share this very useful tip for saving money.

Hi! My name is TJ. I am the author of MeasuringFlower.com. I am very excited to share a guest post I have written for Lisa of Life of a Happy Mom!

Let me begin by telling you a little bit about my couponing experience. I began to coupon in December of 2009 out of necessity. My husband and I had been married for only three months and, in spite plans of not having any children for several years, surprise! I was pregnant with our adorable son! And since my husband and I had decided before we were even married that I would be a stay-at-home mom once children entered the scene, this meant I would soon have to quit my job as a chef. Which also meant a decrease in income. Thus, I turned to couponing as a means to remain a stay-at-home mom. And I began my website, Measuring Flower, to help others learn the art of couponing.

Now let’s go over the basics of couponing. There are two different kinds of coupons: manufacturer coupons and store coupons. Manufacturer coupons are found in Sunday coupon inserts and through various other sources; store coupons are most commonly found in the store’s ad or in a store-distributed booklet.

When you go grocery shopping, you can stack coupons. Let’s use a toothbrush as an example. Say you have a manufacturer’s coupon for $.50 off a toothbrush that costs $1.75 full price and a store coupon for another $.50 off. Use the two together (i.e. stack them) and you receive $1 off, which puts the price of the toothbrush down to $.75, a savings of 57%.

You can also stack coupons and use them in combination with a sale. Say the $1.75 toothbrush is on sale for $1.25. Take advantage of the sale and use the manufacturer’s coupon and the store coupon and you get the toothbrush for $.25, an 86% savings.

Even better, lets say the $1.75 toothbrush is on sale for $1.25 at a grocery store that doubles coupons. Use your $.50 off manufacturer’s coupon which doubles to $1 off and the price drops to $.25. Use your $.50 off store coupon which usually doesn’t double in its own store and the price drops to -$.25. You just got a toothbrush for free (sorry, the surplus $.25 disappears), a 100% savings!

Using coupons strategically like this, I save anywhere from 40 to 90% each time I go grocery shopping. Unfortunately, the misconception about this is that it takes a ton of work in order to save this much. This is not true! Utilizing deal sites such as CouponMom.com significantly cuts the work out of couponing. These sites match the sales and the coupons for you so all you do is pick which deals you want to use, gather the necessary coupons, and go shopping.

What about all the clipping? Well, if you use a site like Coupon Mom, there’s no excessive clipping involved. You simply save the coupon inserts from the Sunday paper and date them. Then check your local grocery stores on Coupon Mom and it tells you which inserts contain the coupons you need. Therefore, you clip only the coupons you need when you need them. No extra clipping! Using this system, I only spend about 15 to 20 minutes a week planning my grocery trip (including clipping coupons).

Now that you know the basics of the art of couponing and how to do it quickly and easily, I hope you’ll give it a try! Oh, and for more information and for more ways to save, please read my article How to Coupon and my various posts on savvy saving.

Thank you for letting me write a guest post, Lisa! And thank you for reading, Life of a Happy Mom followers! Have a great day and God bless!

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