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improve your sleeping beauty routine

The Gift of Sleep, a Mom Essential: Sleep Comfort Month

Hey Mamas,

I hope you had a blessed, joyful holiday weekend.

Okay, I actually hope you got lots and lots of sleep. Really! Isn’t that what we all want? Just a small spot (pillow optional) to curl up and drool for a few hours.

With the holiday hustle-and-bustle upon us, does anyone find it odd that November is National Sleep Comfort Month?

Forget about comfort, how about just lobbying for National Mom Will Sleep Anywhere Anyway Month? (PS I’m so going to try and make that official, some day.)

Day-care holiday parties, Thanksgiving decorating, charity fundraising, corporate gatherings, gift shopping, fa la la la la la la la la ….
Sleep, when?

But, seriously, quality sleep is a luxury me and most moms could not put a price tag on. And, it’s something we need to try and prioritize.
TRUTH – I’m sitting at Le Pain Quotidien on Lexington Avenue and 64th Street, at 3pm on Monday barley keeping my eyelids open, as I draft this post. This has become my permanent state.

Which is why I’m committing myself to focusing on sleep.

Oxygen. Food. Sleep.

Here are a few tips I’m trying to incarnate into my life, in order to improve my sleep routine. I hope they resonate with you, as well.

1. Learn to Say NO

There are only so many hours in the day, and 9pm-12am is not the time to work on an arts-and-crafts project for your son’s class. (Guilty – but I’m trying to change). It’s okay to say no to someone or something else, and say yes to you time, sleep time.
Don’t volunteer for every cause. If you pass out while gathering canned soup, you’ll be of no use to the charity you’re supporting, or your own family. Don’t agree to bake a cake for your kid’s holiday party – buy it! Don’t feel the need to accept every holiday invitation. Your friends will understand. And, they would much rather you focus on the dark circle under your eyes. Seriously, they told me so.

2. Learn to Let Go

Your kids will be fine if you go on vacation, mini vacation, or frequent date nights. They will live if someone else tucks them into bed. You are a kickass mom. But, if you are running low on fuel, you will burn out and be a miserable Grinch. Don’t be a Grinch.
Get yourself to a bed – even if it means you sleep at your mother-in-law’s house during the day, while a babysitter comes and watches the kids for a few hours. YES, I’ve done that. I’ve actually called a babysitter to come and watch my kids while I “go to work”. Work meant sleep … one block down … at my in-law’s house… at 2pm. #ChooseSleep

This Works Deep Sleep sleep comfort month

3. Go to Your Bedroom

Going to your bedroom doesn’t mean you have to go to sleep. But, commit to being in your sleep space by a reasonable hour. I’ve trained my kids to be in bed by 8pm. Now, I’m aiming to train myself to be in the bedroom by 10pm. This can be journal time, reading time, meditation time, bath time, whatever time. #MeaningfulMeMoments

Me Time Sleep Time Sleep Comfort Month

4. Get Soothing Sleep Supporters

From sleeping on silk, to spraying your pillow with sleep-supporting essential oils, the below are my absolute favorite sleep props. You’ll especially want to get everything – EVERYTHING – from This Works, a UK-based brand that puts sleep at the center of its beauty empire. All their products focus on your body’s natural circadian rhythm (aka your sleep/wake cycle or body clock). This Works’ Deep Sleep Superblend, is a must for any mom looking to reboot her sleeping beauty routine.

essentials for beauty sleep1. This Works Deep Sleep Bath Soak $41  ;  2. Shhh Silk 2-Pack Queen Marble Pillowcases $139  ;  3. This Works Deep Sleep Breathe In $33  ;  4.  Slip Silk Eye Mask $45  ;  5. This Works Deep Sleep Pillow Spray $29

Enjoy the last few days of Sleep Comfort Month, and keep me posted on your sleep strategy and success. As always, I’ll be sharing my highs, lows, and sleep-deprived woes on Instagram, Facebook ,and Twitter. #GiftMomSleep

Always Be Your Best You Pamela Pekerman

Spa Week $50 Treatments are Back, Moms Rejoice & Rejuvenate

Hey Mamas.

It’s Sunday. And …

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Spa Week!!!!!

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You didn’t actually think I would say holiday shopping? It’s WAY too soon to think about that, so stop stressing me out.

In fact, stop stressing yourself out, and indulge in Spa Week $50 treatments during the week of October 17 – 23, 2016.

It’s still not too late to save money on a luxurious facial (try a diamond facial, it will glow you up and remind your skin what it’s like to look like you actually get enough sleep), or a foot massage (because mama’s feet scream at the end of the day.)

Whenever I’m near my hubby’s office in midtown, I try to get a foot therapy massage at Sheva Spa NY. Outside the spa doors, it’s the business buzz of one of Manhattan’s most frantic, dollar-driven neighborhoods, inside it’s a zen-zone of purple and orange flowers, gilded deities and all-you-can-drink Thai tea.

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I never cared about foot massages until I became a mom. Mom is the most on-your-feet job I’ve ever had, more demanding and damaging (physically …. and mentally) than anything I could have imagined.

So, I indulge. I indulge whenever, wherever.

I create Meaningful Me Moments at home (hello kid-free bedroom with candles), in the bathroom (because locking the door and putting on Brazilian bum bum cream while munchkins are screaming outside counts!!) in the car (yes, I’ve been know to stay in the car longer than needed while my mom or nanny are with the kids, so I can listen to music, or just listen to my brain go numb … like you haven’t don’t that?) and, at the spa (by far, the best option).

Like I always say, I’m no good to anyone else, if I’m not at my best. And, I’m not at my best, if I’m not taking some time outs.

My good friend, Latham Thomas, whom I recently profiles in my momBOSS series (more inspirational moms coming soon, promise) says, “You need to mother yourself first.”

So, if you’re looking for your next mommy-time-out that’s actually away from the house, check out SpaWeek.com. And, while you’re there, check out my latest articles for SpaWeek’s blog, where I discuss why it’s so important to make time for yourself.

There are tons of high-end spas and medi-spas participating in Spa Week October 2016, all across the country. So, moms everywhere can rejoice and book up.

Share your #MeaningfulMeMoments spa experience with me @PamelaPekerman on Instagram, and let me know how taking time out makes you feel better about yourself, makes you more productive and even makes you a better mom.

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Summer Beauty Inspired by BBQ and Beach

Summer Beauty Ingredients Inspired by BBQ & Beach, on Great Day Washington, Plus How I Almost Missed My Shoot #MommyHood

What a week! How is it only Wednesday afternoon? For those of you who don’t live in DC, below is my “Summer Beauty Inspired by BBQs and the Beach” segment, featured on Great Day Washington wusa9, yesterday. Thank you to my girl Meaghan Mooney for rocking it out with me, once again.

Summer Beauty Great Day Washington Pamela Pekerman Meaghan Mooney

Before I go ahead and share all the retail credit (I hate when shows don’t actually tell you where you can buy items … That’s why I post it on this blog), allow me to vent about the past 72-hours in mommyhood.

Saturday Morning – Ilana, my 3-year-old has been on antibiotics for three days. Strep isn’t contagious anymore. It’s okay to play/interact with David, my 2-year-old. The heatwave is keeping all of us indoors. Family bonding and fun.

Ilana_July_2016

Saturday Afternoon – everyone is napping. I usually get anywhere from 2-3.5hrs to do my own thing. “my own thing” could be laundry, sleep, shower, prepping for segments, planning the kids week ahead, blogging, etc. Time is cut short when David wakes up with a deep wheezing cough. Right away, my husband and I know David has croup. Been there, heard that. Text doctor. Calm David. Open fridge doors and sit next to cold air with him.

Saturday Wraps Up – David is being nebulized with Meds to help open his airways. We now have these on hand. Doctor has approved. Does he have strep? Tomorrow it’s another office visit. Meanwhile, what about my trip to DC? Shoot!!

Sunday Morning – Ilana is with my in-laws, while hubby and I take David to Brooklyn where our Pediatrician practices on weekends. Okay, no strep, just croup. Keep nebulizing.

Sunday Afternoon – I can’t cancel on “Great Day Washington”. I did that last month when I rushed a very dehydrated, stomach-aching Ilana to the hospital. Who’s going to book me? Why bother working even a little?

David_July_2016

Sunday Evening – okay maybe mom can help. Nope not the whole time. Nanny, but not all Monday and Tuesday and plus it’s two sick kids. Nobody can handle that but mommy! But I need to go.

Monday Morning – still haven’t canceled. Gotta cancel.

Monday (late) Morning – a combo of mom, in-laws, nanny, cleaning lady (my daughter loves her!!) and hubby make my 30-hour business trip possible. This was a close one.

Monday 1 hour later – I’m heading to the airport!!

THAT’s mom life. It’s a crazy, cooky existence. But, I truly appreciate every insane moment. When you see me on TV talking about time savers, products that help me (try to) keep it together, I’m speaking from my heart. To be a (semi) decent mamager, you have to be flexible and know that the plan doesn’t always go according to plan!

Now, where’s my moisturizer, silk sleep mask and Rose?

CHARCOAL 

Activate charcoal is a clear winner for adsorbing oil and debris from pores on our face and body, making it the must try beauty ingredient of the moment. I’ve already raved about this black magic wonder on PIX11 NY.

Summer Beauty Charcoal

  • HASK Charcoal with Citrus Oil Collection ($2.49-$5.99) A complete line that features a Shampoo ($5.99), Conditioner ($5.99), and Deep Conditioner ($2.49) that are formulated to give you a deep clean and bring hair back to life. Charcoal, a hero ingredient derived from coconut shells in the Philippines, acts as a magnet and attracts and removes impurities – like product build-up from all the anti-frizz us East-Coast gals are using during list latest heat wave – so you are left with hair that is full of body and shine.
  • First Aid Beauty Cleansing Body Polish with Active Charcoal ($28) This multi-tasking treatment cleanses, exfoliates and smooths to banish bumps and reduce flaky skin. The clay-based paste turns into a foaming scrub when blended with water, making it an ideal prep step for flawless self-tanner application.

SEAWEED

If you love the Vitamin C, iron and calcium boost you get from your seaweed salad, you’ll want the superior hydration as well as anti-aging and anti-inflammatory benefits it gives as a hero beauty ingredient.

Summer Beauty Seaweed

  • The Body Shop Seaweed Clarifying Toner ($15) Don’t skin on toner, like many gals do. This alcohol-free toner,  refreshes the skin, removing traces of makeup (ya you still see plenty of makeup even after a good cleanser) and bladderwack seaweed from Ireland leaves skin looking shine-free. looking skin.
  • Aveeno Pure Renewal Shampoo and Conditioner ($5.79) Due to FedEx errors, these products didn’t actually make it into my segment, which is a shame because I’m such a fan of this sulfate-free shampoo. The Seaweed Extract and naturally derived cleansers help rebalance hair’s  moisture levels, so we’re not dryied out and lack-luster.

WATER

You know drinking 6-8 glasses of water keeps your body hydrated, but did you know the ingredient is just as important in keeping your skin healthy? It’s all about 24/7 hydration perfection.

Summer Beauty Water

  • BECCA Aqua Luminous Perfecting Foundation ($44) The 32% water composition of this liquid foundation makes it super lightweight and easy to apply. It’s also free of parabens, sulfates and phthalates.
  • SkinMedica HA5 Rejuvenating Hydrator ($178) Your skin will want to drink this up! The serum helps diminish appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and supports the skin’s natural ability to replenish its own hyaluronic acid ( you know, that cool stuff young kind produces in abundance making it look plump!!).  Use HA5 twice daily, once in the morning and once at night. Apply it after toning, and treating your skin, right before you moisturize.

ALGAE

Summer Beauty Algae

They may be the bottom of the underwater food chain, but up here, algae are sitting reaching the top of the beauty world. The living plant organisms are the latest ocean ingredients making motion on land because they have many proteins, amino acids and minerals.  Think stimulating collagen and evening out the skin tone, for starters!

  • Elizabeth Arden Ceramide Lift and Firm Night Cream ($76) If you invest in one beauty item, it should be nighttime rejuvenation. This award-winning cream normalizes your levels with moisture-magnet lipids called ceramides that are made in abundance by young skin. Wake to skin that looks strengthened, younger-looking, smoothed, firmer, more lifted, and minimizes the appearance of lines and wrinkles thanks to key ingredients like algae extract.
  • Tata Harper Beautifying Face Oil ($48) You know I adore this company! This lightweight, fast-absorbing face oil hydrated skin surface, and creates a brighter and firmer appearance. The brown algae extract reduce the appearance of dullness and fatigue – ya, I’m talking to you new mom. You want this in your bathroom cabinet.

PS Shout out to my beloved David, who’s doing much better, and taking a nice nap, while mommy types away.

Mom Musings: Toddler Temper Tantrums Have Arrived in My House, SOS HELP ME!

Oh, hi, remember me? It’s been a while, again. What can I say, being a mom isn’t easy! It takes over your life, zaps your energy and spits you out at the end of the night with just enough willpower to eat, hug a pillow and pass out.

Sorry, I should be more uplifting. Usually, I’m gabbing about staying positive, realizing you can’t do it all, all the time, telling you (and myself, in the process) that you should just slap on some mascara in the morning, find a little Meaningful Me Moment in the middle of the day, an
d go about your business cultivating an Always Be Your Best Your attitude.

Well, these past two weeks have burned me – err, scorched me.

My daughter has gone from one ear infection to the next. So, we are now seeing an Ear Nose Throat doctor. I’m praying our current course of action (a month of Flonase) will be enough to finally get rid of the fluid in her ears. If not, it’s ear tube time. My poor baby.

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Goofballs. Girlfriends. This is a the silly after the storm. Toddlers have more mood swings than PMSing teens! Wait, I haven’t raised a teen, yet. Oh SH*T, does it get worse? SOS. SOS.

In the middle of all that she also got afraid to go to the bathroom, thanks to a hard poop. The bulk of this drama – and it was DRAMA ten times over – unfolded while I was on vacation in Anguilla.

Vacation – what vacation? I woke up every day at 6am to watch home footage. I called in hourly. I spoke to doctors and parents. I tried to take a few breaths, but they were few and far between.

I came home to a daughter that was agitated and moody. I get it. She’s been through the ringer.

This week, with most of the health issues in check, I’ve been trying to minimize her outbursts.

What do you do when toddler temper tantrums become a real problem? Anyone? Anyone?

Yesterday, I cried.

Yesterday, I walked in the pouring rain talking to no one in particular.

Yesterday, I wanted to run away.

Yesterday, I still loved her.

Yesterday, I still squeezed her tight.

Yesterday, she was still my Ilanachka.

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My Mom Crazy Eyes after a very stressful, tantrum-filled morning. And, do you see munchkin giving me her version of the Stink Eye?

Motherhood is crazy. Fortunately, I do crazy eyes.

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A little Patchology therapy to unwind after a long, emotional day. #MeaningfulMeMoments … I passed out on the couch not long after.

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There’s always another day. We still smile. We still love. We can handle anything. The elder of the “we” combats whine with wine #MomsandWhine

PS For those who follow me on Instagram, this post was meant to go up on Tuesday, but, you know, motherhood and exhaustion … Any who, here it is. I’m sharing and eager to hear any tips on how you handle your toddler temper tantrums.

P2signautre

 

 

Screaming at Your Toddler, How I Blew My Lid & Why I Want to Wine About It

The lid was blown. I had had enough. It was only 9:05am.

But, we were late to daycare. I called to make sure they would still provide breakfast. Breakfast usually ends at 9:20am. We just left the house. Daycare is a 10-15minute drive from the house.

The lid was blown. I had had enough. It was only 9:05am.

But, she was so cranky this morning. Getting dressed was a disaster. Brushing hair was brutal. Eating fruits and taking vitamins was on a whole new level of bad behavior.

The lid was blown. I had had enough. It was only 9:05am.

Did I mention it was only 9:05am?

But, from 6:45am – 9:05am there was whining, squirming, misbehaving, screaming, crying … Did I leave out any other naught –ing words?

Oh, and, a female-favorite, changing her opinion.

So, YES at 9:05am, in route to daycare, after barely leaving the house and being on the road for all of two minutes, during which time she asked – correction: whinnied and cried – for her pink bag, which she had dropped to the floor at the start of our journey. In between explaining to her that mommy cannot stop the car until we get to day care, she decided to get on another rant involving asking – correction: whining and crying – for me to turn on / turn off “ballet music” (it’s what she calls the classic station).

SCREAM!!!!

The lid was blown. I had had enough. It was only 9:05am and I screamed at my daughter in a voice and tone I don’t even use on adults.

She quietly whimpers. I quietly drive in shame.

Screaming at your toddler leads to nothing. It’s a fool’s tool to get children to stop whatever it is we want them to stop. And, it doesn’t usually work. It might scare them, shock them or both. But, it teaches nothing of substance.

I’m all for using a slightly harsher tone, but screaming is low brow. I don’t do anything to my children that I don’t want them to do to me or others, i.e. screaming or spanking.

My normal response in hard-to-handle, where-is-my-eject-button situations it to talk through it, raise my voice just enough to create a change, and state that there will be a punishment if the action doesn’t stop. Punishment usually involves sitting in “the cage” until I feel they have learned their lesson, apologized, and explained why they were punished.

Side bar: “the cage” is actually a 3ftx3ft area we created from colorful playpen walls used to keep kids in a set, safe place.

Where was I, oh, yes, screaming and blowing my lid!

Another tactic I use to avoid going off the rales, is singing.

I find it helpful to sing really ridiculous songs, while my toddler (or toddlers, if they are double teaming me) is crying or making ridiculous demands in a whining voice.

Sanity songs of choice include: Katy Perry Roar, Dolly Parton 9-to-5, and Chicago’s Cell Block Tango

She had it coming … She had it coming … She had it coming all along … If you’d have been there, if you’d have seen it … I betcha you would have done the same …

Oops, sorry. Back to 9:05am.

It was 9:05am. I’m only human. Okay, I’m a mom, so I’m actually super human. But, even super humans have lids that sometimes burst.

To all the moms that have blown their lids, I feel you. We are on a crazy journey. Some days our kids are angels, other days they are monsters. Some days we sing. Some days we scream. But, every day truly is a blessing!

Oh and TODAY is National Drink Wine Day.

Blow off some steam over a glass of your choice. I’ll  be enjoying a sweat Moscato from Bartenura.

If you’re up for a chat, let’s tweet while we drink. Join me from 9 – 9:30pm to talk about toddlers, tantrums and how we deal with crazy mornings! I’m @PamelaPekerman and the hashtag will be #WineandScreams … get it wine and scream … wine and cheese … whining and screaming

Always Be Your Best You Pamela Pekerman Signature

 

Mom Musings: Working Mom vs. Stay-at-Home Mom, or both?

I don’t want to be a stay-at-home mom – it’s just not for me, and I’m Okay with that realization. I spent enough time judging myself over wanting to work, and I’m done with that negative dialogue.

But, here’s the shocker — after devoting the past year to my babies, I’ve discovered that I can’t just walk back into my previous life. In fact, I’m perfectly happy to give up chasing certain goals, all-be-it temporarily, in order to be more present for the only-gunna-happen-once moments … like Ilana’s first attempt at snow angels, which just happened an hour ago!

So, how do I marry my love for full-time(ish) motherhood with my passion for entrepreneurship without becoming a cliché of a woman that feels torn from one thing or another, at any given time? Because, I have to be honest, I can’t stand when I hear women complaining at work that they miss kids or are with kids complaining they miss the work force. Life is brief gift. If you aren’t happy, take steps (no matter how small) to improve your situation. Me, I  want to make an effort to create a system that melds all my worlds together. And while I’m all about rosy glasses and perfect, positive thoughts, I’m walking into this plan with the sober knowledge that it’s never going to be perfect. Life will be messy and complicated. Baby sitters will flake out. A project will be canceled. Money may be lost. Moments may be missed.

I spent much of my flight home from Switzerland, last Sunday, contemplating the possible options for the next phase of my life.

As I learned the hard way when I leaped back into work after Ilana was born, in order for mom to work (in ANY capacity), the foundation (aka baby coverage, orderly home, food in fridge, meal on table, etc.) needs to be solid.  Above all else, one needs ORDER and ORGANIZATION, which aren’t my strongest characteristics. On the positive side, I am getting better with each child. I can only image how fabulous I’ll become at juggling when I have three or four (oh, yes, I want more!) kids. But, I digress.

I don’t know how some of my 30-something peers do it, it being this thing we call life as a mom. Below, is how I plan to tackle my weeks, at least in the near future, in the hopes of fulfilling all my needs. Wish me luck!

  1. Hire extra help 3x per week (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday )
  2. Tuesday and Thursday are work days. Close the bedroom door and only pop out for occasional cuddles and love. Also, use these days to schedule all meetings/previews in the city.
  3. As much as possible, avoid working on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Commit to being all-in with the kids. If needed, blog before 7am or after 8pm. Avoid scheduling important work calls, unless the other side doesn’t mind hearing David laughing.
  4. Monday, Wednesday and Friday are devoted to David and home-related errands, which are ALWAYS piling up – laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning, ordering gifts for other kid bday, confirming plans and baby coverage for weekend if needed, cooking, researching new developmental toys, creating clever at-home activities, planning Ilana’s 2nd bday …
    1. While David takes nap #2,  go to the gym, shower, have lunch, maybe check emails
    2. Every other Friday, take David to visit great-grandma in Brooklyn
    3. Meaningful Me Moments – mani, pedi, wax, tea time, journaling
  5. Create a dump list Sunday evening and allocate tasks for each day. Keep all info in Erin Condren Life Planner. Don’t overcommit, to avoid being overly disappointed. Remind yourself that you have two little kids in the house and things don’t always go according to plan. Case in point, if the nanny doesn’t make it tomorrow because of what might be the BIGGEST BADDEST snow storm ever in NYC, I can’t attend the Fashion Group International’s Rising Star Awards. C’est la vie.

To all the moms trying to figure it all out, here’s to becoming better jugglers. If you have any tips, I’m always happy to hear from you. Find me on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

P2signautre

Mom Musings: Truth about Draining Breastfeeding Madness, Don’t Judge Moms

Who just ate yummy milk?
The background was me moving in all my office essentials from the
city to the home office. This was another item on the to-do list. 
I confess … breastfeeding is the pits!
As I anxiously anticipate the arrival of my son, this summer, I shiver at the thought of sacrificing my sleep and sanity in order to feed him breast milk. I say “breast milk” because it’s been made VERY clear to me that I did not “breast feed” my daughter, last year.
Apparently, pumping, which provides the same exact nutritional value as does putting a baby to a breast, is not actual breastfeeding. Um, go F*^% yourself. My daughter received the same good stuff and I still had to work very, VERY hard to manage to survive the five months of +Medela madness.  
Sorry all you judgmental peeps, including the nurses at the hospital that nudged me to at least try to breastfeed because “skin to skin is so important for your connection to the baby”. My boobs belong to my husband! I’m in for making the milk, but the sucking part is coming from a glass bottle. We used Lifefactory, in case anyone is wondering.
But, I digress.
 
Breast feeding, round two. Yah or Nah?
 
Yes, breastfeeding / pumping is the pits. It was mentally and physically exhausting the first go around. I didn’t help the matter by jumping back into work (albeit from home, most of the time). I even did a store appearance ten days after giving birth. (PS It was the grand opening of NessaLee Baby in Livingston, NJ. The store and the owners are amazing.) Oh, and I refused to get a nanny because I was flush with energy, initially, despite being up every three hours to first pump and then feed Ilana Rose.
L to R: Trying to look normal with +NessaLee Baby owners Jordan and Vanessa;
with EXTRA Wardrobe Stylist Julie Kozak;
with +Project Nursery  co-founder +Melisa Fluhr 
Of course, in keeping with my Always Be Your Best You philosophy, I did not walk around the house looking like a hot mess. Before the 6am feeding, makeup was applied, along with my post-partum, body-preservation creams.
 
Ilana Rose was doing great. I was calm, so she was calm. We go into a great schedule and in about 5 weeks or so she began to have wider gaps of “feed me” moments, at night. I, however, was still up pumping out the goods.
 
My brain was spinning. My body was flipping out. I felt like I was on drugs, and I’ve never taken drugs so really this was just what I assumed it felt like to be drugged out. I remember telling my sister and husband that I felt like someone was pumping helium into my brain because I felt foggy. Nothing seemed clear. Then, one day, the sh&t; hit the fan.
I used to watch her sleep a lot. I should have listened to my mom
and mother-in-law and slept, as well! 
While feeding my daughter, I attempted to sing her some songs. But, who turned off the play list? I couldn’t remember the words to anything! It was like a part of my brain was gone. Over the next few days, I noticed that I couldn’t articulate my thoughts properly to anyone. And, then, the emotional madness hit. I couldn’t control the tears. It was ridiculous.
 
Turns out, I was seriously sleep deprived. I skipped a few pumps at night, but then felt guilty because if you don’t do it you lose it! I tried to go on more walks. I pulled back on work (although, not nearly as much as I should have!). Then, my family stepped in and we got a nanny. The nanny cared for the baby, while my mother cared for me. Ya, that’s how bad it got.
 
I eventually decided to pump through the summer, use stored milk after that and slowly transition into formula.
 
Yes, breastfeeding is the pits. I had NO IDEA WHAT I WAS GETTING MYSELF INTO! It’s impossible to breast feed, take care of a baby, manage your family and work the way I choose to work without proper help. Even then, the physical demands of being a milk factory are beyond comprehension to anyone who hasn’t done it.
 
So, here comes number two.
 
For those who are wondering, yes, I plan to breastfeed my son. Oh, sorry, pump J. This time, I’m older (this past year basically equals ten years!) and wiser. I’m taking off July and August. My only work will be to be mommy. If the spirit moves me, I will blog. That’s it! I plan to go for about four or five months, but I’ll take it week by week.
My little peanut.
There is no denying that giving a baby breast milk is the best option. But, it’s very personal. Given everything that I’ve shared, you can imagine that it’s not something I can recommend. In fact, all I will say is this:

Do what works for your body and your family. If skin-to-skin is your game, great. If you want to pump into a machine and feed from a bottle, bottoms up. If you want to cabbage up your boobs (I’ll talk about that in a future post) and just do formula, fabulous. We shouldn’t judge each other, because motherhood is a crazy job that we need to figure out and navigate as we see fit. And, of course, we need to do it with confidence, style and a little rough ;-).  You knew I would say that, right? 

Mom Musings: My First Mother’s Day as a Mom!!

Happy Mother’s Day to all the stylish, sexy, & trying to stay sane moms! Oh, and that includes ME.

It is with great honor and joy that I introduce you to my daughter, Ms. Ilana Rose, born April 4, 2013. The past few weeks of motherhood inauguration have been fabulous, fun, occasionally frustrating, but thoroughly fulfilling. I’ve shared, and will continue to share, daily glimpses via my Instagram, Twitter and Facebook channels.

Ms. Ilana Rose

I can’t begin to express the emotions that charge through my body, the happiness that oozes from my pores, the exhaustion that requires major adjustments, the thrill of seeing my husband morph into Super Dad, the blessing of giving my mom her 3rd grandchild/ my in-laws their 1st/ & my grandmother her 3rd great-grand daughter, the urge to constantly clean, the desire to still be desired, the enjoyment of Ilana’s smell … in all forms, the need to get organized, the pain of not being able to share this with my father, the delight of knowing he’s with me through Ilana, the pleasure of a stroll with the stroller, the satisfaction of a content baby you just fed/changed/swaddled and put to bed, the comfort of having a sister who’s done it all … and kept labeled boxes of everything I would need when the time came, the appreciation of under eye cream/concealer/tightening body cream/boob tube/rose water spritz/ etc., the tranquility of sitting in the nursery, the burned fingers from sterilizing bottles, the excitement of fitting into Herve Leger again – oh ya!, the terrifying md.com searches –  never again, the peacefulness of watching Ilana wake up, the fear/fun?!? of sharing my accessories closet, the entertaining milk factory sleepwalking moooo dance, the MIRACLE OF BEING A MOM.

Ms. Ilana Rose and mommy, month one**
**proper bedding from Olio did not arrive at time of this picuter 🙂
Here’s to the journey ahead, full of, as my gal Lyss of DivaMoms, says “strollers and stilettos”. Or, as I like to put it, may I NeverSurrender my sexuality, style and sassiness regardless of what lies ahead. Wait, is that drool on my Barefoot Dreams robe? Darn it! Ah well, the sexy lace number underneath is more appealing for the hubby anyway . . .