Tag: motherhood

La Petite Peach_Yellow Dress 4La Petite Peach_Yellow Dress 1 La Petite Peach_Yellow Dress 2 La Petite Peach_Yellow Dress 3

I have been thinking lately about the “balance” between being a mother and a freelancer. It seems like there is never time to do everything. Recently, (the past year) I made the most conscious effort to put family before anything work related. Here’s what happened, work has lagged a little behindbut honestly not by much. Am I happier? Heck YES! I feel like I have been giving my family 100% and it feels great. No, I haven’t made a ton of money this year. And yes, I could have blogged more, taken on more clients, wrote more guest blog posts, shot more sponsored posts but really I am not sure it would have mattered a ton.

What I do know is that I went on a ton of family trips, spent time with my beautiful children, drank wine on my patio with my husband and read more lovely books than I can count. So I have to say, life is pretty amazing. With that said, I am always striving for a balance, not a perfect one (there really isn’t such a thing) just one that works right now. Isn’t everyone? Here are my new five mantras to fit in some studio time this fall…

1. Set boundaries on business hours: I wrote about boundaries last week on how to be a better freelancer, and I stand by my wacky business hours! I work when the kids are sleeping. Period. If I am working while I am with them, then I am ignoring them and it’s just not the type of parent I want to be.

2. Unplug from your business and plug into your life: Social media has been amazing for me in the blogging and business world. However, if I am trying to edit an Insta what am I missing out on? SO MUCH! Get out there and live! Take tons of pictures, but share them later and not in real time. Stressing over what to say, share or not share is never as fun as living in the moment.

3. Let go of perfectionism: Nothing is perfect, you can only do what you can and what brings you happiness. People aren’t perfect and that is what makes them wonderful. If I don’t blog on a Thursday or show up a little late for pickup, it’s not the end of the world. Everything will be OK.

4. Get focused and establish a routine: My routine so far has been working. However, we have another little on the way and that is definitely going to get all muddled. I am not sure how it will all work out, but Luke will be back at school and Wesleigh will be at nursery school two mornings a week so that gives some wiggle room to establish a new routine. Just because you get organized doesn’t mean that your routine is set in stone. It will change and evolve.

5. Cultivate your tribe and support system: You can’t do everything alone and neither can I! I have an amazing family and group of friends I can count on. I also have some amazing colleagues I can send work to when I am on maternity leave. You better believe I will be calling on them! Your family tribe and your work tribe are those you can count on for support, but also those you return the favor to when they are in need.

motherhood

Whether you are having your first baby or your fourth, compiled here are a few pieces of advice I discovered through my own journey as a new mom. These tips will be sure to get you through those first few weeks after bringing baby home. You will feel exhausted, overjoyed, stressed, and blissfully happy all in one day, or even in one hour! Staying positive and knowing when you need to take a breather is the key to new mom success!

  1. Keeping your Body Healthy: Eat right, drink water, and keep taking prenatal vitamins for the first few weeks after baby. You want to make sure you are getting all the nutrients you need. Staying hydrated is SO important for your body to heal.
  1. Eye Contact: This sounds a little “woo woo” but take 10 seconds from your day and make eye contact with your baby. I swear it will take your mood from a 1 to a 10 in a second.
  1. Deep Breaths: When someone tells me to take a deep breath I usually do a mental eye roll. Taking three deep and conscious breaths (in through the nose and out through the mouth) will calm and clear your head.
  1. Quiet Zone: This means you are taking time to do something for yourself and not the laundry! Take a hot shower, find a reading nook, or go for a walk. Look for anything you can do to give yourself at least 20 minutes of uninterrupted quiet time every day.
  1. Learn to Say No: You need bonding time with your baby and you may be feeling overwhelmed with visitors (who have good intentions), but having company can be exhausting! I never said no with my first, but when the second came I learned to say no. Instead I threw out times that worked FOR ME and friends and family could come see the baby then. I also had no visits the first week home so we could all get used to our new schedule.
  1. Get Fresh Air Every Day!: It is SO cold here in the Northeast in the winter but even if you stick your head out a window/door for just a minute and breathe in some fresh air, it will boost your morale. I love going for a walk in the summer or having a coffee at a café with outdoor seating. In the colder seasons, I take a long slow walk to the mailbox even if it’s snowing just to be outside every day.
  1. Baby Wearing: When I had my oldest 10 years ago, I started baby wearing. It’s so great for your healing body and for bonding with your newborn. My babies slept better while I was wearing them AND I got SO much done with all the quiet time.
  1. Pick up a New Book: You may feel like your brain is just too tired to possibly read a book, but it’s the ultimate thing you can do for yourself. Take a peek at the Best Seller List or ask a friend for a suggestion. There is nothing like getting lost in a great book.
  1. Listen to the Zen Parenting Podcast: While you clean, cook, shower, etc.Zen Parenting is a genius podcast I wish existed 10 years ago when I become a mom for the first time. Hosts (and spouses) Todd and Cathy guide you through parenting to become a better you and, in turn, raise better children. I can’t say enough amazing things about this series.
  1. Accept Help: Especially with household chores! Give your husband dish duty, the older kids or your mom some laundry assignments. Accepting help can be hard, but your first few weeks at home are way harder and you need the time to recuperate. A stressed mama does not make a happy baby!
  1. Trust Your Gut: When I was first pregnant I remember family, friends, and even strangers telling me how with their first they called the doctor about everything. They stressed about every little thing. I was afraid to be the “annoying mom” who always calls the pediatrician. However, I quickly let go of that and I STILL call the doctor about everything. I trust my gut, and when my gut says there is something wrong then I call. I can say that a few times I was right about needing to take the baby in. It’s better to be safe than sorry!
  1. Go on a Date with your Baby: Take your baby out to a café for coffee or treat yourself to a delicious breakfast at your favorite place, just the two of you. Don’t forget to pick up the style section of the newspaper or a great magazine. Just sit, people watch, and be!
  1. Take Advantage of Grocery Delivery: I actually love to grocery shop, but the first few weeks after you bring a baby home the last thing you want is people you don’t know getting too close to your baby OR anyone seeing your “I don’t have time to shower” hair. Take advantage of food delivery services like Peapod. We have a local grocer who delivers as well!
  1. Write a Grateful List: Write down numbers 1-5 (or more if your ambitious) with something you are grateful for and keep it in your side table drawer for easy access when you’re feeling down. It can be as simple as: “I am grateful for my baby’s health.” Reminding yourself of the little things is empowering.
  1. Keep a Video Diary: I wish someone told me this with my oldest. I was so sleep deprived that I barely remember those first few weeks of being a new mom. I didn’t take any videos of him as a newborn. Let’s face it, they don’t do too much in the beginning! But we forget SO easily those first few days, I wish I had taken more videos. I took a TON with my second baby and even though she is only 18 months, I look back at those little clips and I am SO grateful I have them!

 

This article first appeared on the Boston Day Book. Photography is by Rachel Castillero from The Fox and the Sparrow Sessions.

Currently in FASHION

IMG_7598

Finding Inspiration

la-petite-peach-3

Animal Coats from Little Goodall

mariechantal-263-copy

Marie Chantal Fall 2016

I was in Boston last week, and I did something so ridiculous.

LPP_Blanket2015

Wesleigh and I where in the city for the day then spent the night after a delicious meal with a great friend.

The next morning I went to one of the coziest coffee shops for a brain storming session with a new blogger friend (if you don’t read the Boston Day Book, you should asap). Wesleigh and I decided to walk there and it was literally 5 degrees. Since she screamed the last two blocks, and was a total baby-cicle, I decided to “Uber it” back to Beacon Hill.

What happened next is a blur. I got back to the hotel and realized that we DID NOT have Wesleigh’s blanket (pictured above). The one she has had since a newborn, the blanket that we definitely had on the way there. I called the front desk, nothing. Followed by calling my Uber driver, nothing. Then finally I called the cafe…NOTHING! I left my name/number JUST IN CASE someone turned it in. Then…5-7 minutes of crying like a babyme, not Wesleigh.

Confession: I did this with Luke too when he was the same age. The only good thing is that he had two blankets that where exactly the same, and I lost the “newer” one and not the one he had as a newborn.

I am pretty sure this was an official “mommy melt-down”?!

But I stopped freaking out pulled it together and decided on the way home I would drive the car down Newbury Street and look for the blanket. I was hoping it would be there, but was prepped for the worst. When I got there, I actually/seriously, found it. It was 50 feet from the cafe and in the middle of the road. I stopped the car, ran through the middle of the road to get it, and then danced back to the car.

Every bad experience has a lesson. I hate this saying, but it’s so true. From now on we are traveling with a special “travel” blanket, so that the original can stay SAFE AT HOME! Have you ever done anything like this? Please say yes…