to begin again

[artwork by Simon Page]

So much has changed since I first started writing this blog. I was living in Santa Monica with my husband in a house we were struggling to make feel like home. I was still in my twenties and my mind would wander into the years to come and wonder where I'd find myself. I was running my business as an academic manager working alongside families of children with disabilities like autism, dyslexia, ADD and ADHD, auditory processing, and even hearing impaired. I would travel around the world often with my husband and around the country to visit my girlfriends. I was living a dreamy life amidst the hustle and excitement of a city that never seemed to sleep. I came to this place to write about all of my adventures. To write about everything I did; food I cooked, things I bought, magazines and books I was reading, projects I made at home.

Fast forward almost three years and I am living in the South Bay, with my husband AND our baby boy. We love our home and it is our perfect place to anchor ourselves each night. It is our safe harbor. I am in my thirties now and I am living the life I also dreamed about; I'm a wife and I'm a mommy. My mind still wanders and dreams and draws up vision after vision for our life and the things I want to enrich it. I realize now that day dreaming isn't about hoping for something other than what you have but rather gathering up the images in your mind you want to create in your life. I get to stay with my baby boy most days. While pregnant with him, I completed a certification program to become a Pilates instructor. We still travel often but it is simply not as easy as it was before our little guy was born.

I am now at a place where I still want to share but my heart holds more than it used to. My thoughts are deeper, more vulnerable. I want this to be a place that women and mommies can go to be inspired by, and connected to, each other and that others (outside the circle of this sisterhood) can go to understand them better. I want this to be a place that people draw from to create the life they want. I plan to share: about movement and the its importance in your life and for your full health, food that nourishes both your body and your soul, stories of love, parenthood and connection. You'll also find companies and sites that I love, beautiful words that pull me along, and mini tours around the towns I love.

Cheers to beginning again! If you've been here before, welcome back!

bring home your baby...



As I think back to my little man being a small baby, I remember the things that I couldn't have lived without during his first couple of months and I thought I'd share some of them with you. Whether you have a baby now, are planning on having one, or have friends who are having babies, I hope this list can be of help. Over the last couple of months I've had three women stop me in the baby section of Target and ask me questions about what things I've needed/wanted/would give a friend. Here is my little list:

Dr. Browns glass bottles
We loved using these glass bottles so that my husband could give our little one 1 feeding a night. It made me feel amazing to have that one longer (ahem...4 hours if you're lucky) stint of sleep and was a good bonding opportunity for them. With the glass bottles you don't have to worry about many of the things you have to with plastic. We never used them in the microwave but you can since they are glass.

sleep sheep
This little guy was a sleep saver for me! The first ten weeks my son slept in his moses basket, parallel to us, near the foot of our bed. (Thank goodness for a king size bed!) We loved having him close. Bringing home a baby for the first time, wanting rest, not being 100% sure what the heck you are doing...it's all hard. It's even harder when you aren't sleeping. When your new little precious life is breathing in the same room as you it's almost impossible not to overanalyze each little sound they make. Having the sleep sheep going helped me not to focus on every sound he was making and be able to fall asleep. (Running a load of laundry and we were falling asleep helped too.)

Five year daily journal (not pictured)
Truth be told, I found this journal at Madewell years ago and saved it for just these days. I knew I'd want to keep track of little details but wouldn't have time or the focus to write them all down. The journal has small spaces for just a few lines or words for each day of the year. Each day has divisions for 5 years worth. It has allowed me to keep track of mini milestones but also precious moments, like watching the clouds pass over the full moon during a 3 am feeding when my son was 4 weeks old.

sleeping gowns
Boy or girl...there is no baby that shouldn't sleep in a gown for their parent's sanity. With a little babe who is in constant need of feeding and changing and sleeping, having no snaps, buttons, or zippers to work around is a lifesaver. Plus, in the beginning days there is no real day and night so you can just keep them in these twenty four hours a day.

aden + anais swaddles
These blankets do it all! We used them as traditional swaddles (our little couldn't sleep without being swaddled for months), to drap cover the carseat to block him from the sun and more, as a burp cloth and just about anything else you can imagine. They are lightweight, easy to wash, easy to pack, and come in the cutest prints.

moses basket
Our moses basket was given to us by a dear friend and I'm so grateful for it. I mentioned above that we used it to cosleep in the beginning. Once we were ready, we put it in his crib so that he would get used to sleeping in a new room while still in a place he was comfortable with. It is easy to move from place to place, our son would nuzzle his face into the cozy fabric on the side as he fell asleep, and the lining comes out easy for the wash.

puppy training pads (not pictured)
As silly as it may sound, we loved the confidence these gave us while diaper changing. We used them on the changing table so that little accidents didn't become HUGE headaches. We only used them for a few months because we didn't want to create excess waste but while we had them, there were plenty of times that were so glad to have them down. 

mother's day 2013

Mother's Day is always an important day for me. I find it entirely important to acknowledge the legacy of mothers who were given to me and set an example of what mothering means. In the years past I have loved celebrating my grandma and mom with my sister. We have gone to some extremely yummy restaurants, wandered through gardens full of blooms, watched movies about both babies and babies of the wild and so much more. 

This year, I got to celebrate them (even though my grandma is no longer with us), my mother-in-law, and my sister-in-law, as well celebrate being a mommy myself. We gathered, sixteen of us, perfectly fitting into our backyard for a brunch. We ate mixed berry bread pudding, baked eggs in ham, roasted potatoes in bacon and dates, chocolate, almond and plain croissants, and much more while sipping champagne from the mimosa bar. We sat amongst the freshly planted garden and newly decorated patio under the glowing bistro lights, all along one long table filled with blossoming peonies. BUT, most importantly, we celebrated and enjoyed each other. My husband gave a beautiful toast to us mommies and we were able to relish in all that being a mommy means...surrounded by beauty and decadence, baby cuddles and giggles, and love, love, love.   

Just few a snaps from our day:




this amazing man...


our teeny tiny family... one, two, three of us!

mother's day


Yesterday, as I celebrated my first Mother's Day my thoughts went back to last year. The day I found out this little was growing rapidly in my belly. I can't believe an entire year has past and he is here to celebrate this year with me. My little man made me a mommy back in January and he has already taught me so much in such a little time. 

He has taught me to be more humble, less reactive, and more soft than I was before. He has helped me learn how to ask for help (I still haven't come close to mastering this one) and that it is okay to not be able to do it all on my own. He has shown me that I am even stronger than I already thought I was. He has allowed me to be reflect on what is truly important, what is loving and true. Through so many smiles and laughs he has transformed my identity. I am a mommy now, and will now forever be. And for that, I am thankful of him. It is the best because he is the best. 

41 weeks and 2 days of progress...

At the beginning of my pregnancy I knew that I wanted to do something creative to document my ever growing bump. I got the idea to make a stop motion video that showed the progress of my little babe. Next up I had to choose a location, an outfit, and a photographer. All these things were complicated. The location needed to be somewhere that I could get to easily, conveniently, and would look the same for 40 weeks. The outfit needed to be one that fit (properly) for 40 weeks. The photographer needed to be someone that would be willing and able to help me execute my vision during and after the 40 weeks. The video below is the result of that. It wasn't easy to always get out there at the right time of day and when all necessary parties were willing and able but...we did it! AND...I'm ecstatic that we did. My husband and I love the final cut and I know my little man will one day too.

 

Location: my parent's backyard. Outfit: dress from Anthropologie. Photographer/Editor: my amazing sister