I don’t know how it happened, but suddenly I’m 5 months into my whole “mom of two” experience. I have to tell you, it is flying by! Adding a second baby definitely is a game changer in many ways. While there is chaos, a lot of juggling, and sometimes tears, there is also so much love and joy. And the moments when Charlie just wants to entertain or love on his baby brother, and I see Calvin look at him with so much wonder and love, my heart bursts and I stop and think “this! this is what it is all about!” Read More
Category Archives: mom tips
Happy Friday! I wanted to send you into the weekend with my favorite green smoothie recipe – Charlie and I start our day with one most days lately. I used to make these all of the time and then had a total aversion to them when I was pregnant. So the smoothie is making a comeback in our house in 2015. I love using my Mason Jar Blender to make these, but probably any good blender would work fine. I just find that I’m more likely to make smoothies daily when I keep this little blender out on my countertop rather than getting out my bigger clunky blender.
GREEN SMOOTHIE RECIPE
Ingredients for one large serving:
- 1 ripe banana
- frozen spinach (could also use fresh spinach and a frozen banana if you prefer)
- coconut milk (or regular milk or almond milk if you prefer)
- peanut butter (can use sunflower or almond butter if you have a peanut allergy)
- flax seed mill
- I fill my container pictured above about 1/3 of the way with frozen spinach (approx. 1 cup frozen spinach)
- Cut up one ripe banana
- Add one tbsp of flax seed mill
- Add one heaping tbsp of peanut butter
- Fill remainder of cup with choice of milk (1-2 cups depending on your preference)
- Add a squeeze of honey
Blend, pour into your favorite cup, add a straw, and enjoy! My favorite part is that it basically tastes like a peanut butter and banana smoothie but has all the benefits of eating leafy greens – not mine or Charlie’s favorite thing to eat. Win win!
This is also a great thing to add probiotics to if you give those to your kid, or if you need to sneak a sick kiddo some medicine (just be sure they drink the whole smoothie – which my kid always does!)
What’s your favorite tasty + healthy smoothie recipe?
And if you’d like to catch up on all of my momma posts elsewhere, here ya go:
Why It’s Ok to NOT Breastfeed (I’m trying to start a #nourishwithoutshame movement – join me by reading the post, sharing your photos of you feeding your baby, however you feed your baby, and use the hashtag!)
Oh postpartum issues, why do you continue to plague me? I’ve still got 25 pounds to lose, I have baby hairs sprouting off my head in random places, my moods are all over the place, and now my skin is going nuts. The entire bottom half of my face is extremely dry. Like beyond dry. It has gotten itchy and is now breaking out all around my chin and around my mouth. I am starting to think that this is my body trying to protect itself from ever having the opportunity to get pregnant again, because it is making me the least desirable woman on earth. It’s a good thing they make babies so cute – instead of looking at myself in the mirror I look at his adorable face
Since it is a new year, I’m trying to jumpstart some new healthier habits that will also hopefully help some of those postpartum issues. I’m trying to hike at least once a week and am tracking my steps with my fitbit again. I stopped drinking coca cola (my most favorite thing) and am drinking more water. I’m trying to put my work away early twice a week to spend an evening of tv or movie watching time with my husband without a laptop attached to me. And I’ve started paying attention to my skin again and taking some time for myself. After a couple of days of a new skin treatment, my dry skin has improved drastically. So I thought I would share what has been working for me to help you battle your own dry skin brought on by postpartum hormones, winter, environment, or whatever plagues you.
- Put away the harsh products, especially the cleanser. While I typically use this regimen for my skin (and love it) it is too harsh for my postpartum dry skin. So I’ve switched to using this cleanser, while still using this moisturizer during the day, a DIY moisturizing treatment at night I’ll share below, and still using this eye cream.
- Exfoliate, but not too much. I know that sounds weird, but trust me. Rather than using a gritty or harsh exfoliating cleanser daily, be gentle with your skin but exfoliate once a week. If you have a little money in your budget to treat yourself, buy this exfoliator and never look back. It is amazing. Using it for 5 minutes once a week will give you smoother, healthier, glowing skin that you didn’t realize you had because it was buried under a million dead skin cells. I haven’t needed a facial in two years since I bought it (except I got lazy while I was pregnant and after I had the baby and didn’t use it regularly)
- Moisturize. I didn’t want to buy an expensive moisturizer to get me through this dry patch (pun intended) so I made my own and it is working so well. Want my DIY moisturizer recipe? It’s so simple:
- Fill a jelly jar with coconut oil.
- Pop it in the microwave for 15 seconds.
- Add 4 drops of Melalauca Essential oil
- Add 8 drops of Lavender Essential oil
- Stir well and let harden or pop in the fridge for 20 minutes or so if you need to use sooner.
- Coconut oil is a solid under 76 degrees F, and liquefies above that temp, so if you keep it in solid form just rub it between your palms to get it to liquefy and apply to your face where skin is super dry.
Now if only I could find something that would help me lose the baby weight that easy…
What are your biggest postpartum issues? Have any secrets to share to make postpartum life a little easier?
PS – You read about my experience with postpartum depression after the birth of my first baby here. Luckily I don’t seem to have it the second time around.
Now that Calvin has passed the 4 month mark, I can look back and see that I had definite favorites that were absolute essentials for me during that early time. And since this is my second time with a newborn I feel like I really got the hang of what was and wasn’t essential this go around (like, you really don’t need that wipes warmer!) Here are my top 10 things for life with a baby, 0-4 months edition. The headings are linked in case you want to buy any of these for yourself and your babes. Read More
Sometimes I feel like I write two blogs: this one that you’re reading now (which started as a wedding blog and has organically transformed into a little-bit-of-everything blog) and my instagram feed. I still try to share as much wedding-related content as I can here on Oh Lovely Day, but my instagram feed is my life. That means it is mostly my kids and motherhood-related posts. But it is my real life, my daily journal really, and I try to be as real as possible. It’s a balance between blogger/creative and momma/wife/work-from-home-mom/hot mess. The blogger in me loves styling a photo, sharing pretty things, putting my boys in cute matching tees and instagraming a picture. The mom in me has a messy house, dirty hair, no makeup on, and am probably in workout pants without actually working out. I’ve gotten quite a lot of mom followers on instagram, and sometimes it can be a nice little community where I ask a question about something I’m struggling with or share my favorite tips or products. And since I’ve had another baby and taken a little time away from this blog, instagram has allowed me to stay connected with my readers and my little community.
The downside to instagram (blog reading) is that sometimes you see the edited versions of people’s lives. At the very least you might only see the highlights. Everything looks perfect from the outside. I try really hard not to only share the highlights. I might share that my two month old slept eight hours one night, but three days later he barely sleeps at all – so I try share that too. And the main reason I share that he slept through the night in the first place is that as a second child, I don’t have time to write his milestones down. Instagram is like his baby book, and luckily there are ways to print those photos and captions now so it literally IS his baby book. If I didn’t instagram something, it wouldn’t get documented at all. But I really do try to keep it real. Sometimes though, I realize maybe I haven’t. Maybe things look better or easier than they really are.
An instagram follower emailed me last week and it affected me. I asked her if I could share the email here because I think it is something many of us feel and is good to put out in the open. So here it is:
I follow you on Instagram. I wanted to let you know…..I admire you! I’m a new Mom & First time Mom. I’m a sleep deprived, body aches, nipples hurting, working, hungry (no time to cook a whole meal) new Mom, but You give me hope that this will all get easier. I read how well you breast feed, change Calvin to all these cute outfits all the time and decorate their rooms and you make it look so easy….meanwhile I’m dying. My boy doesn’t sleep thru the night, we struggle with breast feeding and my milk supply goes up and down. The day I had to begin supplementing with formula…I felt like a loser.
Anyway, I just wanted to let you to keep doing what you do….because I see you & you give me hope.
Thanks so much & see you on Instagram
This was my response:
I sooooo appreciate your taking the time to send me that email. First, thanks so much for your kind words – made my weekend! Secondly, I owe you an apology because if I make this look easy, I must not be being honest. It is so NOT easy for me. And my first time around it was so overwhelmingly hard I’m surprised I wanted to do it again. Part of why I blog and Instagram is to share that, because I didn’t see anyone saying “I’m struggling, this is hard” etc. when I was a new mom. I have shared some posts on days I was really struggling. I’ve cried out of exhaustion and frustration many times the last 2 months. I usually try to talk about it with a little humor but it isn’t easy for me, I promise. And I had to supplement my first baby with formula since day 1. He got more formula than breast milk b/c my supply was so low due to a thyroid disorder and I felt the same way. And I had postpartum depression. I was so hard on myself. And you know what? He didn’t get his first cold until 11 months and his first ear infection until he was 3. He’s a smart, healthy, happy boy. And I’m just lucky about the sleep thing – I do nothing special. Every baby is so different. Hang in there! We all have it hard and struggle but it does get better and easier.
Don’t be so hard on yourself. I wish I could go back and tell my first time mom self that. You’re doing great, your baby will be fine, and everything will get easier. It will pass. I promise.
My kids and I don’t go on picturesque picnics on mexican blankets. I don’t make uber-healthy lunches using all organic ingredients. I don’t even cook dinner every night. Or every other night. I don’t keep my child perfectly entertained without the assistance of the television or iPad. Calvin nurses well because it came easy. If it hadn’t, I would have had NO problem giving him formula and calling it a day. I’m 20 lbs overweight and hate it. But I don’t have time or energy to do anything about it most days. My husband and I haven’t had a date in three months. And I’m tired. So tired. I wish everything I did was blog or instagram worthy, but it just isn’t. And if it were, it is only because blogging is currently my job. Moms with regular 9-5 jobs or who are SAHMs and aren’t bloggers should not and cannot expect to keep up with that. That’s what it is like to live in LA – I walk around looking like a regular person amongst all of these beautiful and skinny actresses. I have to remember that so-and-so lost her baby weight in 2 months because it is her job. And she has the resources at her disposal to do so (a nanny, a personal trainer, a plastic surgeon, etc.). She gets paid to look like that. It is not realistic for us regular gals. And we can’t hate ourselves because we can’t keep up.
I just wanted to share that. We are all doing our best. But we all have hard days. Another instagram follower once commented that we shouldn’t compare our behind-the-scenes to someone else’s highlight reel. I love that. Just remember that all those people you follow on instagram or on blogs are real people. They have ups and downs, feelings, and hard days. No one is perfect. Let’s take it easy on each other. Let’s take it easy on ourselves.
PS – My experience with postpartum depression.