Maternity Monday: Pixie Pants

Maternity Pixie ChinosI was intrigued to see that Old Navy’s popular Pixie pant comes not only in numerous colors as maternity pants, but that they also have the side panel and the full panel pants. I always preferred the full panel pants personally — ladies, which were your favorites (and why)? The side panel pants are available in three colors, sizes 1-18, and full price at $34 — the full panel ones are available in this sage green and marked down to $21 (very limited sizes left, alas). Maternity Pixie Chinos


Building a maternity wardrobe for work? Check out our page with more suggestions along both classic and trendy/seasonal lines.


  1. Favorite swim shoes? says:

    Which are your favorite swim shoes? Had a good brand I bought on Amazon that I can’t remember now — Skideez or something? I see Old Navy has some too but generally try not to buy shoes from them.

    • Meg Murry says:

      I have a pair from Lands End that have lasted forever and a day. Never pay full price there though – they always have some kind of sale going (and if they don’t, wait a day)

  2. I had a demi-panel version of these pixie pants, and LOVED them for the first 24ish weeks, but not so great when I got bigger. Be warned, though, that the seams came undone multiple times in different spots — you get what you pay for in terms of quality. I just resewed them, since I was only wearing them for a few months, but you may not want to deal with that.

  3. quailison says:

    I liked side panel pants for the first half of pregnancy and then preferred the full panel styles. The side panel pants have come in really handy postpartum. I don’t have these in particular but a similar style from J.Crew that have held up well.

  4. 1. Can I get a big old UGH for pregnancy related insomnia?? At first mine was tied to nausea but now it’s just stuck around for funsies.

    2. Thank you all for such great ideas on how to camouflage a pregnancy. I am 12 weeks and not showing and have some strategies on how to get to 16 weeks before I tell work.

    3. I ordered some maternity clothes from seraphine and am thrilled with the quality. The jeans in particular fit wonderfully!!

    • Manhattanite says:

      Be careful on fit for jeans. Your hips will expand as your ligaments loosen with hormones. You may want to wait a few more weeks before you pick out jeans. 12 weeks is pretty early still. I think I got away with my regular jeans until around 16-18 weeks even on pregnancy no 2 using a Bella band or a rubber band.

      • Thanks for the heads up. I’ve got some room plus a good amount of stretch in the hips. I can still fit into my normal jeans and expect to for a while.

        (I ordered these clothes figuring they’d take 2 weeks to get here because of international shipping, etc. but they got here in just a few days.)

      • Katarina says:

        I think it really varies. The maternity pants and jeans I bought at 13 weeks fit throughout my first pregnancy, and seemed more comfortable than a bella band or especially a rubberband, but I outgrew the tops I bought at 16-18 weeks by 30 weeks (in the bust).

    • Re: the insomnia — it absolutely sucks. I have a 9 month old now, and by my calculations, I haven’t slept well in at least 18 months. I hear magnesium helps — might want to ask your provider about that.

      • Thanks! Will do. My prenatal has a higher than normal dose of magnesium but I’ll ask.

    • waiting says:

      Amen! I’m so insanely exhausted all the time, and then spend all night tossing and turning…. really hoping it gets better.

    • Due in December says:

      Seriously. And I had never heard about pregnancy-related insomnia before I became pregnant. Never.

    • PregLawyer says:

      Take unisom – not the gel tabs. It’s in your grocery store. Worked like a dream to help me fall asleep. I only take half a tablet a night.

  5. nuna travel crib sheets says:

    Seems like such a silly question, but not sure if I’m missing something. We are thinking about getting the nuna travel crib as the crib/bassinet for our apartment when baby arrives. For those that use pack and play or travel cribs as their full-time crib, what kinds of sheets do you buy? Only what is compatible with that brand? That would make me a little sad as nuna’s options seem limited, but not sure what the other options are – put on a too large sheet and fold it under?

    • We got a couple of the Nuna-branded sheets from Giggle (they owed us a credit after screwing up a furniture order!). You’re right that they’re not exciting, but they fit, and the waterproof-ness has been a huge plus in keeping the sleeping pad clean throughout the Great Spit Up Month.

      We were nervous about trying to adapt Pack & Play size sheets because of extra fabric / SIDs, but now that the baby can roll, lift his head well, etc., I would do it.

    • I have the Bjorn travel cribs and got a second set of portable/mini crib sheets from American Baby Company, available on Amazon. You should check the dimensions to see if they will work for your mattress. I love the Bjorn cribs and used them as their primary cribs for about 6 weeks while we were moving. The babies tolerated it fine, but it is hard on the back to lift them in and out of, and much worse if you are recovering from a c-section. Depending on your setup, you may also want to look into a rock-and-play as a bassinet alternative for the first 3 months. They are pretty affordable and particularly useful if your baby has reflux issues.
      But a good travel crib is great to have. In addition for using them for travel, they also make great play pens

      • In House Lobbyist says:

        We use a mini-crib and have always just got the pack in play sheets. I love the velour ones from American Baby (I think) but also have some Carters ones. I also ordered a real mattress that was much better than the one it came with – I’m not familiar with the one you are talking about so that may not be an issue. We are in kid 2 with the mini crib and love it even though our families think we are insane.

    • I have this and we used the Nuna sheets (which are overpriced, and stain easily, but are very soft), and aden and anais sheets. Really, you can use any sheets with the Nuna, but I would suggest thicker ones as the mattress is a little rough. The mattress slides down tight enough that you can pull the sheets firm against it and won’t have any worry about loose sheets/SIDS concerns.

      • nuna travel crib sheets says:

        Thanks! Do you like it overall? How old is your baby now, if you don’t mind me asking?

        • You didn’t ask me specifically, but we love it. Baby slept in our bedroom (in bassinet) until almost 5 months. That bassinet is so, so sturdy.
          Now we mostly use it as a playpen at home— he hangs in there while I get ready for work.

          Agree about the Nuna brand sheets— re both softness and stainability.

        • He is 14 months, and now we leave it at my parents, but he slept it in almost exclusively for the first 3 months or so while he was in our room. We really like it. It is very easy to put together, the quality is great, and I like that they now have the changing table thing you can put on top (which I would have bought as well) for the times at the beginning we had visitors sleeping in his room, while he was in ours (or to leave at my parents to have a changing table there).

          Don’t get the mini though. It is so small it is not worth it (IMHO).

    • Is it wrong that I have never put sheets on a pack n play? I just put the baby on the mattress. We’ve never even owned pack n play sheets. For some reason, the whole “sheets on a pack n play” thing just seemed like too much to handle.

      • I am firmly in the whatever-works-for-you camp. Outside of actual health/safety issues, I say there is no “wrong”!

  6. anon for this says:

    We’re moving soon and my MIL, who lives 2.5 hours away, wants to have my almost-4-year-old stay with her for a few days before we go.

    I’m trying really hard to be ok with this but she’s not good with boundaries — regularly puts him to bed late, ignores other house rules, etc. They live right on a lake and I know that she has already bought kayaks for everyone. My kid cannot swim. Grandma is almost 70; my FIL is slightly younger but shows no real interest in my son (sees him twice a year, etc).

    Do I trust that the boating will be a non-issue? Does under-4 feel like too young to go away to grandma’s for several days? I’m not sure I could be “on duty” for 3 days by myself, let alone while 70 years old.

    • (former) preg 3L says:

      My knee-jerk reaction might be unfair, but here it is. H3LL NO don’t let this kid stay by himself with grandma and grandpa.

      (Obligatory single mom confidence boost: you could absolutely be “on duty” for 3 days by yourself.)

    • I would be really nervous about that, too. You can get him a life jacket to wear, obviously, but if you don’t trust that MIL would actually put it on him, that’s an issue. Could you (all) go for an extended weekend visit before your move? So you get some quality time in but you’re there to keep an eye on things? Or invite MIL to come stay with you? Maybe she could watch your son (with you nearby) while you pack.

      FWIW I don’t trust my MIL with our child, either, and don’t plan to ever leave him alone with her. It’s a bit easier in our case, though, as they live much further away.

    • Meg Murry says:

      I was going to say “it will be ok, send him to Grandma’s” until I saw the part about the lake. My 3.5 year old has zero self-protection when it comes to pools – he would jump right in if we weren’t physically holding him back, so I would lean toward no. My oldest was much more of a rule-follower, and more timid, so he wouldn’t try to go anywhere without an adult, so I might have given in on him, but never my youngest.

      When you say “right on the lake” do you mean – her front or backyard is the lake? That would be a 100% no for me – my kid is too sneaky, and has been known to get up and wander out of the house at 6 am if the door wasn’t locked. If there is a fence or something I might be a little bit less worried, but without it – NO.

      Can you make it about the kid and not her? Don’t say that you don’t trust her to watch him – tell a story about how he’s snuck away from you, etc.

      • Me too. Four year old on a kayak with aging grandparents who don’t respect your boundaries? Nope.

        But on your more general question, I wouldn’t leave a four year old for a multi-day stay. Maybe an overnight, but only with my parents who are extremely trustworthy and overprotective. I’d respond with “that’s a lovely offer, but he’s not ready to be away from us for that long.”

      • anon for this says:

        so glad I’m not the only one knee-jerking NO to this one. I just remembered he’s been getting freaked out about the move and has been crawling into bed with us almost every night where he has bad dreams — sometimes I think he’s wandered around our apartment at night while asleep. Of course they live in a house with very steep stairs — and Grandma sleeps below grade so he’d have to go down there to crawl into bed with her.

      • Yep. No because of the lake. Water and cars are the things that scare me (well, now that my boys are past SIDS age). I’m pretty relaxed about everything else, but water and cars I’m neurotic about.

    • The idea of kayaking with a child who cannot swim would also make me extremely nervous. I wouldn’t trust/assume anything. Talk to your MIL about her plans for kayaking — is it a double kayak, where your FIL will paddle and your MIL will hold your son? Is your son able to sit still and willing to be held? Do they have a life vest for him? If you don’t trust that your in-laws will refrain from kayaking with your son, against your wishes, then I would be hesitant to leave him with them. Which is a shame, because otherwise spending a couple days on a lake with the grandparents sounds like heaven for a little boy!

      The other things (going to sleep late, etc.) I wouldn’t worry about too much — both sets of grandparents do the same thing with our toddler (putting her to bed an hour late, not letting her nap, not sticking to her meal schedule, etc.), and it’s not that big of a deal. But I also have never doubted that she’s safe with them.

    • I just wanted to say that I think it could be OK to leave your son with your parents/in-laws for multiple days at that age, if you’ve done one or two night overnights before as trials. I’ve left my kids with my parents for 5-7 days (they were 6 mo and 3 years, and then 2 years and 4.5 years at the time), and I would do it with my in-laws if they volunteered. But in your case, no, I wouldn’t do it – if you have any misgivings, it’s not worth the risk.

      • Meg Murry says:

        Yes – you are right – overnights at this age are ok in general, but also ok to say no. I’ve left my kids with my parents for multi-day stretches, and my in-laws for single overnights. My parents are always completely exhausted after these overnights though – its easy to forget how exhausting it can be when you can’t get a kid down at night (and they sometimes get up in the middle of the night) and then they are up again at the crack of dawn and go-go-going all day long.

        If part of her worry is “you are moving far away and now I’ll never seeeeeee grandson any more so I need an overnight now” could you temper this by putting a family visit to her on the calendar for sometime in the next 3-6 months if you are moving somewhere in a 1 day drive range or 1 year if you will need to fly?

      • Spirograph says:

        I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks it would be ok in general. Maybe not in this specific case with the lake if it’s actually right on their property with no barrier, because of everything above about kids being sneaky and having no self-preservation instinct. If boating is a separate trip to the lake that is nearby though, I would think it’s fine. I’m sure 70 year olds have enough sense to put a life jacket on a small kid who can’t swim! And a few nights of late bedtimes and lax rules never hurt anyone. I’ve left my 2-year old for multiple nights with my mom, and will continue to do so as long as she’s up for it. I have no idea whether she follows all my rules and normal bedtime schedule. A few nights of freedom and letting my kid have special time with his grandma is worth it to me. I figure, I’m never going to be 100% comfortable with my kids being out of my sight, but that’s something I have deal with.

        All that said, I’m not sure what you’re including in the “other house rules” she ignores. If you have serious misgivings, there are a million graceful excuses you can and should use.

        • In House Lobbyist says:

          I’ve left my kids for multiple days with my parents starting from early on. But now that there are 2, the younger one goes less often than the older one. But my parents are in their 60s and it takes both of them and they are exhausted at the end. So I agree it’s ok to stay overnights and that long ( my 4 year old just went to the beach 9 hours away with my parents last week) but only if you trust them. The water would be a red flag – my parents have a pool but are very safe and keep it locked up and don’t let the kids near it without them both. Drowning is the number one cause of death on children and you have to make sure grandparents get the right kind of life jacket and use it properly. But occasional late bedtimes and extra ice cream won’t kill him – my 4 year old loves to tell me about the ice cream and juice boxes he gets at Nana’s. But my husband’s father and his wife would never be allowed to keep my dogs and never my kids so I think different rules apply to each person.

    • Anonymama says:

      In general, I would be fine leaving a three year old with grandparents for a few days, even on a lake (actually have done this). That said, depends on the kid and level of “not following house rules” … Letting kid stay up an hour past bedtime is not the same as letting kid go in a boat without a life jacket on. Can she be firm on really objectively important things? Also, it depends on your kids personality, if he’s okay being away from you. It could be really good for his relationship with his grandma.

    • You’re not being ridiculous.

      Related side note- as a former swim instructor, I encourage as many people as are able to make sure that kids are taught basic self water rescue techniques as soon as possible. Even non swimmers can be taught to flip on their backs and grab the edge if they fall in a pool.

      I used to teach infants through adults and although there is no substitute for careful watching, it’s very good to have kids practice what to do in an emergency.

      (I had some of my 5-6 year olds practice in clothes and that was always the MOST FUN for them. Being allowed to wear shoes in the pool?? Awesome!)

    • anonymom says:

      OK in general for an almost-4-year-old to stay with grandparents as long as they understand and can be trusted to abide by reasonable safety rules. With a lake and a grandma who routinely disregards instructions, NO WAY. And this is coming from the mom who was considered negligent by the rest of the moms in the neighborhood for packing a 6-year-old off to camp for a week. If even I wouldn’t send a kid to grandma’s in this situation, I think very few parents would.

  7. This weekend I learned that the current primary reason why pumping at work blows is because my flipping shields are too small. When I first used my pump under the guidance of a lactation consultant, she explained the proper shield placement to me, but never said that I should not experience rubbing or that my n!pples could change size over time. In reading the wonderful Work. Pump. Repeat. (I think I heard about this book, or the author’s blog, I talk about boobs, here), the author mentions that there shouldn’t be any rubbing and that if there is, it can affect your output. OH. New, larger shields to the rescue!

    (FWIW, the instruction guide that came with my pump does mention this, but I am sure I am not the only one who did not crack this open until well after using the pump regularly.)

    • Carrie M says:

      That is so annoying, but glad you’re getting the right size! I sometimes would rub coconut oil on the flanges too for extra protection. There was also a stretch where I sometimes used a larger flange in the morning but a smaller one at night (or maybe it was vice versa….so funny how the details that seem SO important at the time become so hazy so quickly!).

    • Large flange says:

      I have the same issue as you!
      I tried the standard flange size that came with the pump on and off during the first couple of months when I was on maternity leave, it seemed fine and I ordered 2 more sets. The replacements however are NOT fine and cause chafing! I am now at work and struggling through. Did I change size or are the replacements just off by a few millimetres?

  8. Moms of older kids – what did you do for sunscreen? My 6 y/o is starting summer camp today, and he is supposed to bring sunscreen and apply it himself. I bought him a little spray bottle, which he sort of knows how to use, but I’m a little worried it’s just too tricky to make sure he gets the hard-to-reach spots (like the back of his neck). I know the counselors won’t apply it for liability reasons. Are there any fail-safe sunscreen options? Has anyone tried sunscreen wipes? (Last summer he was still in preschool, where the teachers doused them with sunscreen liberally.)

    • I put it on my kids in the morning before they leave and make them wear a hat with a brim all the way around. No one way my 6 yo is competent to make sure he’s thoroughly covered.

      • Do you think that’s enough? Everything I read says that you should reapply after a few hours (and in a few weeks, he starts swim camp. Ugh.) I apply in the morning before he leaves too, but he just gets browner and browner (luckily, he won’t burn, but still).

        • It’s probably not enough, but that’s all I know for sure he’ll get. I also send a bottle of lotion with strict instructions to reapply, but I doubt it gets done regularly or well.

    • anonyc says:

      Same position as you, except it’s a 4-year-old (so, application by himself would probably do more harm than good). I thought that perhaps a sunscreen stick might be the answer, and may try to pick one up on my way home tonight. But mostly I just slather it on in the morning and hope for the best. I’ve done okay with this approach during summer camp season in the past with other kids. I try to get more zinc-y stuff (I use California Baby on faces, for example).

      • Lorelai Gilmore says:

        I LOVE the Neutrogena sunscreen stick that’s in a broad bar format. It goes on beautifully, doesn’t get in eyes, and I think my five year old could apply it by herself with appropriate reminders. I think this is one of those things where you have to do your best and let the rest go. However, for swim camp, you should definitely get a rashguard – that’s my favorite “sunscreen” solution.

  9. Transition to Nursery? says:

    At what age did you transition your baby from a bassinet (or baby containment device of your choosing) in your room to her own nursery at night? My baby will be 12 weeks in a few days. When I was pregnant (and thought I knew exactly what I was going to do once baby was here…sigh…) I thought we would want to move her at three months. But now she’s so little! And so cute! And it’s so easy to just reach over and nurse her and put he back to sleep when she wakes up in the middle of the night.

    But I don’t want to wait too long to the point where it becomes more difficult to transition her in the future. A sleep consultant who visited my mommy and me group said four months seems to be a magic cutoff point for a smoother transition.


    • Spirograph says:

      We did it around 4 months, mostly based on our procrastination at buying a new bed for my son and converting his toddler bed back to a crib for the baby. I think the bigger issue is whether your baby is getting too big or too mobile for the bassinet. Mine was definitely pushing the limits, there.

      FWIW, we had no issues. But baby’s always been a great sleeper.

      With my first, he was in a crib in his own room from the time we brought him home. Really no issues there either, that I can recall. *I* slept a lot better, actually, because babies are so @#*$& noisy when they sleep, and when he was across the hall, I couldn’t hear him until he cried.

    • Amelia Bedelia says:

      I moved my baby at 6 months. She has never been a great sleeper, and I decided it was time because (1) she was outgrowing the co-sleeper (!); (2) she was only feeding once during the night and I was planning to start weaning her off the mid-night feeding; and, (3) no matter how quiet my husband and I were at night, she would often awaken when we went to bed.

      It was SO nice to get our room back, but I’m glad I waited as long as I did. It made night wakenings infinitely easier, and, frankly, I liked having her near all night. I wasn’t worried she would die during the night or anything like that; I simply liked the feeling of having her in the same room.

      If you aren’t ready at 12 weeks, that’s okay. Move her when you are ready or you will regret it later. I waited longer than I thought I would. And when I moved her, I felt confident and happy in my decision.

    • CPA Lady says:

      …6 or 7 days old? I could not sleep with her in the room with me. Every noise, every rustle, and I was wide awake.

      I also stopped feeding her at night around the time she was 12 weeks old, and she started sleeping more or less through the night.

      ETA: I agree with Amelia Bedelia, do what makes you happy! It’s so easy to make plans before you know what kind of baby you have. I just wanted to let you know that a baby can be perfectly fine sleeping in a different room from a young age.

    • So late… so very late. 15 months! I had all sorts of reasons why, but really I just liked sleeping with him in the room / bed with us. Ultimately none of us were getting enough sleep, though, so we moved him to his crib in his own room and we all slept like champions after that.

    • We moved our daughter to her room across the hall around 8 weeks. I was sad and wanted to put it off, and then we had a really rough night where her every move woke me up, and my every move woke her up. It was easier to stomach after that frustration and we both slept better!

    • Maddie Ross says:

      I did at 15 weeks, because I went back to work at 16 and wanted to make the crib transition before returning to work. It went… ok. She slept much better in the rock and play and we ended having to try all kinds of weird tricks with the crib (Magic Merlin Sleep Suit FTW!). Her bedroom was right across the hall from us though and she had pretty much given up nighttime nursing at the point we moved her. If she still nursed in the night or was on a different floor, my answer may have been different.

    • Manhattanite says:

      We moved DD at 5 months from our room to hers with no issues. And then did sleep training a few weeks later to move her from the rock-and-play into her crib. Sleep training was not fun, but it only took 3 days as I remember.

    • 2 weeks, ha. Bub is the NOISIEST sleeper. And his room (really an alcove) is close enough we can hear him easily without a monitor.

    • EB0220 says:

      My first moved to her room part-time around 10 months. My husband traveled four nights a week so it was easiest to pull her out of the Rock N Play, nurse, and put her back in bed. Even when she wasn’t up constantly I felt better having her near me. #2 went to her room at about 3 days. None of us slept when she was in our room, so I moved her to her room and she slept very well (relatively speaking).

    • Katarina says:

      At six months, and everyone slept better. I wish I had done it at 4 months, which is my plan for my next one.

  10. DC Mom says:

    We just tried moving the baby to her room this weekend, at nine months! It did not go well…
    She still nurses twice a night, around midnight and then around 3:30am. Fun! I would really like to drop the midnight feeding, but have not been successful. Any magic tips/advice?
    She usually goes down between 9-10pm. And we have been training her to fall asleep on her own since she was about 5 weeks old, so I know that she can do it, but there something about the middle of the night wakings where she must have boob.

    • Have you been away overnight yet? It’s almost guaranteed that when mom is away an older baby will sleep 7:00pm-8:00am for daddy with not one wake-up. Mine slept until 8:45am the first time I was away! (meanwhile I woke up at 6:30 in my hotel, wide wide awake.)

      • Meg Murry says:

        Or at least – not one daddy wake up :-) I’m pretty sure part of it is that as soon as my baby squeaked I was awake, and moving toward him like a zombie automaton, while it took a good 5-10 minutes of escalating fussing and crying to get my husband to wake up.

        Might be too late for this advice but my take is:
        1) Give it at least 5 minutes of fussing before going to baby when waking up to see if she actually is waking up fully or just fussing in a light sleep period. If she’s actually wailing before 5 minutes by all means go to her – but if just 5-10 minutes of fussing I’d see if she falls back asleep before intervening.
        2) Send daddy in to her first to try shushing/patting/bouncing before offering the boob
        2a) consider having daddy offer her a sippy or bottle of water if she’s already started solids? An ounce or 2 of water at this age should be fine
        3) If you do wind up actually nursing, just do it for a few minutes and then pass her to daddy to bounce/pat/shush
        4) If all else fails, this may be a growth spurt (they tend to happen every 3 months) so try again in a couple of weeks

        tldr: I’m not a fan of “cry it out” with full on wailing, but I did find at this age that baby often “fussed it out” and fell back asleep if we left him alone.

  11. PregAnon says:

    27 weeks and everything is irritating me. Last week started with our annual raise / bonus conversation (which is supposed to be based off of our annual review from February, which was outstanding), which ended up as a “do over” on the review where they changed their minds and only gave me a tiny cost of living increase.

    Basis of mind changing was that I’ve worked from home no more than 2 days / month because of SEVERE morning sickness and dehydration as an ADA accommodation through HR, yet they don’t seem to feel that matters. Awesome. After being here over two years, they’ve also decided they don’t like my “contract negotiation style” (event though NO ONE has ever bothered to watch / listen to me negotiate a contract, and my contracts are typically more favorable to our company than other contracts negotiated by other attorneys!). At least I’m past the worst of it and shouldn’t need to work from home anymore, since my leave starts in 10 ish weeks. This is a HUGE, HUGE violation of ADA and company policy (we can work from home on an intermittent, as needed basis), but I seriously don’t have it in me to fight it. Yes, this is all documented in writing.

    At the same time, my family thinks they now are entitled to call and talk to me every day, when we weren’t that close before I got pregnant, and they get snippy if I don’t call them right back. My phone is now on perma-silent except for work calls. It doesn’t help that hormones are making me a little rage-y anyway. Argh!

    • (former) preg 3L says:

      Ugh, that’s so frustrating. Commiseration? I’m no closer to being divorced than I was in November, and I’m so annoyed about the whole thing. I desperately need some money in child support so that I can move out of my parents’ house, but STBX is the worst. I’m so frustrated and I had to fire my lawyer because she was useless (even though I’ve paid over $15k of legal bills).