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new mom must haves by Pamela pekerman

New Mom Must Haves, As Seen On TV

Hey Mamas,

So, I’ve been getting around the country (Washington, D.C., Miami, Dallas) sharing new mom must haves, while trying to manage my own mama drama – hello sick kids galore and a new house that we likely will not move into until late 2018!

Any who, today is the first day in nearly three weeks that both kids are not sick, and, thus, attending daycare. With a slew of “free time” on my hands, I wanted to share my new mom must haves with all of you.

If you’re expecting a little munchkin, or know someone who is, check out these great products and services that will make motherhood a little easier – just a little.

NEW MOM MUST HAVES

Medical Innovations

New Mom Must Haves Medical Innovations

PreTRM, preterm blood test for premature birth
I can’t stop talking about this important blood test, which is a clinically validated prenatal blood test women can take to determine their risk of delivering prematurely. Results can now empower moms and their doctors to better manage and prolong their pregnancy and improve the health of the baby. Check out my full blog post about this new mom, game changer.

Pacidose Pacifier Medicine Dispenser ($14.99)
If you’ve ever tried to give a baby medicine you know all about the mama drama that can occur. Pacidose attaches to a hospital-grade oral syringe for perfect measurement, and a tiny tube down the middle that prevents the liquid from being wasted in the nipple. It’s a fuss-free, safer and more effective baby medicine dispenser.

TempTraq Wireless, wearable thermometer ($19.99)
When babies are sick, the last thing you want is to wake them up for a temp check. TempTraq monitor fevers continuously via an FDA-cleared, wearable, wireless temperature monitor in the form of a soft patch that continuously senses, records and sends temperature data to mobile devices through the free TempTraq app. Mamas, you can receive alerts when a child’s temperature hits a user-set red zone level. Otherwise, just keep sleeping.

Dream Support Team

Baby Brezza Formula Pro, Formula Mixer & Dispenser ($179)
The Formula Pro is the best way of prepare your baby’s formula bottles. It uses patented technology to measure, dispense and mix water and powdered formula to the perfect temperature and consistency! No more midnight formula mixing and mess ups!

Baby Brezza Safe + Smart Bottle Warmer ($69.99)
App-Connected Bottle Warmer that saves you time and energy! Mom can enjoy a 5-minute (yes that counts) power nap, or go to the lady’s room with peace of mind. The only Bluetooth-connected bottle warmer to warm both breast milk + formula. Its integrated Bluetooth capability – allows you to receive notifications from a smartphone app once the bottle is ready.

Baby2Body Digital Content Platform for Expectant and New Moms
Beyonce and Amal Clonney don’t get generic baby advice, and neither should you. They have a dream team of support and this new iOS app gives new and expecting mom’s direct access to the same star treatment. Basically it’s a personalized nutritionist, stylist and motivational expert in the palm of her hands… guiding women through all their trimesters and beyond.

New Mom Must Have Products

Better Bed Time

Olababy Trimmo Electric Nail File ($39.95)
Trimming babies nails isn’t just a beauty ritual, it’s a medial must. It’s also a maddening fuss!!! The Olababy Trimmo is an electric nail file designed for parents to delicately, yet effectively trim their baby’s soft, growing nails. It features a central disk with a rotating buffer pad that can be interchanged with various grit sizes to trim babies’ nails at 0 months through 12+ months.

Nanit by PENSA Re-imagined Baby Monitor ($279 + $50/year for insights)
Forget what you know about old-school baby monitors! Nanit is the smartest baby monitor ever because it learns how your baby moves, and tells you if they’re fussy, awake or sleeping like a dream. Insights help parents identify sleep issues, track sleep patterns, parent visits, room conditions and much more. Plus, a Sleep Score let you know if baby’s sleep is improving.

Kepi Kozy Kit safer swaddle($98)
Kepi Kozy Kit is the first-ever swaddling system to support and protect newborn’s head, neck, and spine thanks to a clever “spoon” nicely tucked under the swaddle. The design allows friends and family, from the youngest to the oldest, to support and hold a baby without worry. Seriously, this is the safest, smartest way to swaddle your baby.

New Mom Must Haves Baby Sleep Aid

Looking for more, new mom must haves? Check out my TV segments from ABC’s Good Morning Washington, NBC’s Miami 6 In The Mix, and EyeOpener TV syndicated to several markets including my new #CityCrush Dallas.

Pam does Miami
NBC6 6 in the Mix with (mom of two) Roxanne Vargas

Pam does Dallas
EyeOpenerTV with (new mama) Neeha Curtis

Pam does Washington, D.C.
Good Morning Washington with Autria Godfrey

Premature Birth Breakthrough PreTRM blood test

Premature Birth Blood Test: One Less Pregnancy Stress

Hey Mamas,

Pregnancy is the stressful, pre-game to being a juggle-as-much-as-you-can, without dropping ANY ball, mom.

Who Should Worry About Premature Birth?

Ball 1 – Your Health

Ball 2 – The Fetus’ Health

Ball 3 – Your Looks

Ball 4 – Home Prep

Ball 5 – Work

Ball 6 – Your Fitness Routine

Ball 7 – Your Nutrition

Ball 8 – What’s the New Norm? What’s the Happy Formula?

…. And so on.

Who Should Worry About Premature Birth?

With regards to Ball 1 and Ball 2 – i.e. the health of mommy and baby – there’s a new blood test called PreTRM that aims to relieve stress in the health department.

PreTRM is a prenatal blood test a woman can take during the 19th or 20th week of pregnancy, that determines her individualized risk for delivering a baby prematurely.

Having gone through two pregnancies, I truly never considered myself at risk of delivering prematurely, which is defined as delivery before 37 weeks. Boy, was I naïve.

PREMATURE BIRTH SHOCKING FACTS

The March of Dimes estimates that the preterm birth rate in the U.S. is approximately 1 in 10 pregnancies, one of the highest rates in the developing world.

50% of women who go on to have a premature birth, have no risk factors

The best predictor of preterm birth is a previous spontaneous preterm birth. However, 40% of women who have a premature birth are first time moms.

Premature babies are at an increased risk of developing serious and sometimes long-term health issues including: neurological, pulmonary, gastrointestinal, vision and dental problems, and behavioral issues such as ADHD and anxiety.

PREMATURE BIRTH BLOOD TEST

As mentioned already, the PreTRM test is a breakthrough in helping reduce the problem of premature birth by simply taking a prenatal blood test at your doctor’s office. Your doctor shares your individualized risk assessment and determines the next steps for your pregnancy management.

The goal is to identify women, who are carrying one baby, show no signs of delivering prematurely, but still test at a higher risk of having a preterm birth, according to the blood results from the PreTRM test. Essentially, the PreTRM blood test now let’s doctors create the best plan so the mom-to-be is less likely to delivery before 37-weeks. The test doesn’t prevent preterm delivery, but it’s an awesome tool for your health care provider to do his/her job and hopefully keep the bun in the oven for a longer period of time. #StillCooking

PreTRM blood test deliver baby prematurely

PREMATURE BIRTH BLOOD TEST PreTRM LEARN MORE

Mamas, if you’re currently cooking a bun, or plan on getting pregnant, check out PreTRM.com. You’ll learn all about their clinically validated studies, as well as other useful peer-reviewed medical journal reports.

Since PreTRM is a new, first-of-its-kind test, your insurance may not cover the hefty $945 price tag. However, years ago, the genetic testing that today is covered by most insurance companies, was also not covered. Once the insurance companies understand the financial benefit of having less premature babies to take care of (sad but it always comes down to their numbers!) PreTRM will probably be covered. That, of course, is my hope!

If I’m blessed to have another baby, I certainly am going to ask my doctor to perform this test. I’d rather downgrade the cost of clothing and fancy strollers, for the peace-of-mind of a potentially healthier pregnancy and healthier baby.

Premature Birth PreTRM Blood Test

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.

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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?

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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.

Pamela + Vanessa #momsandwhine Ep.2 Mother’s Day pet peeves, gifts we really want, & shoe giveaway

Good evening mamas!

I hope you enjoyed watching Episode 2 of Pamela + Vanessa #momsandwhine. We’re having so much fun with these videos, in case it’s not obvious enough.

As always, each episode ends with a little show & tell. This week, I shared my love for Shh-oes, the quiet shoes I recently featured on PIX11 Morning News. They are super comfy, very quiet and moderately priced given that it’s leather.

Meanwhile, gadget guru Vanessa, my fabulous co-host, showed the new Nook Sleep feeding pillow that I might need to get for myself . I’ve been falling asleep in odd position on the living room floor. #MomBurnOut !!

Before we get to this week’s giveaway rules, the winner of last week’s giveaway is …. Aubrey Rochelle.

Good luck with this week’s giveaway, ladies.

MomsandWhine Giveaway

Giveaway Rules
2. Leave a comment on Episode 2 (keep it classy and sassy)
3. Follow @PamelaPekerman and @TheNessaLee on Instagram
Contest ends May 8, 2016 11pm EST, and is open to all continental US residence over the age of 18.
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momBOSS interview: Ramy Sharp designer Ramy Brook fashion

Several years ago, while filming a makeover segment for CBS’s The Couch (RIP – I loved that show and crew), I met designer Ramy Sharp of Ramy Brook. Assertive, vivacious, impeccably coiffed, yet effortlessly casual, Ramy embodied her sexy, sophisticated brand. Several lunches and conversations later, I was hooked on the woman, her fashion brand (PS the Robi sleeveless top is a style staple) and the motherly wisdom she could share with me – I was a new mom with one baby, she already had three kids. I’m so happy Ramy was eager to be interviewed for this feature. She everything I think about when I envision a momBOSS*.Ramy Sharp of Ramy Brook

Pamela Pekerman: In your 20s you were a big shot advertising gal. When and why did you decide to take a break from work?

Ramy Sharp: When I graduated college I was determined to move to NYC. Once I decided not to go to law school, like both of my roommates, advertising seemed like a good field for me. It was corporate and social at the same time. After 10 years in the business, I had my first son. I went back to work on a freelance basis to keep my head in the game. However, it was tough for me to balance both work and being a new mom. So, I stopped working in advertising and took my skills into the philanthropic world where I could create my own hours, interact with adults, do good and be a mom.

Pamela: Since the launch of Ramy Brook in 2010, you’ve had tremendous success in a short period of time. Many moms have dreams, they never chase. What gave you the courage to follow your passion?

Ramy: When I launched Ramy Brook I was fulfilling a need for my own wardrobe. Every day, I would look in my closet and couldn’t find anything to wear. All I wanted was a sexy top to wear with jeans. I had no clue what I was doing, so I asked everyone I knew in the business for help. Jennifer Miller(jeweler) helped me secure the name, Stefani Greenfield (owner of Scoop) sat with me all day and taught me retail math among other things of how to build a brand. My friend hooked me up with her high school friend, Anika, a renowned pattern maker for a brand called Tuleh. Timing seemed to be on my side, as Tuleh closed its doors, so Anika and I worked day and night to create the first 7 pieces of the Ramy Brook collection. As I look back, I realize I didn’t have time to worry or question myself. I found a way to overcome my fears and stumbling blocks, because at the end of the day, I believed women needed these clothes as much as I did.

Pamela: With Ramy Brook, at what point did you realize, “Wow, I’m onto something big!”?

Ramy: I brought my collection to the famous personal shopper Betty Halbreich at Bergdorf Goodman. She had me hang my 7-piece collection in her dressing room. Betty had an appointment with Chelsea Handler’s stylist and when she walked in and saw the collection she wanted to take every top, I knew I was on to something. Chelsea ended up wearing the VR2 (very Ramy 2) in sky blue to her opening night at the Beacon.

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Pamela: Who are some of the fabulous momBOSSes wearing Ramy Brook?

Ramy: Cindy Crawford is one of my all time favorite “momBOSSes” and wears Ramy Brook. Julianna Margulies, Alyssa Milano and Lisa Edelstein are some of my favorite celebrities wearing the brand as well.

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Pamela: Who do you have in mind when you design the collections?

Ramy: Our girl is the multi-tasking woman who wants to feel confident in her clothing. She is busy, she is smart, she is happy and the clothes reflect that image to the world.

Pamela: What’s next for Ramy Brook?

Ramy: We have a few shops in the works, one in Southampton and one on the Upper East side. We are focusing on our website, in addition to scouting locations for a new brick and mortar store. Ramy Brook is a lifestyle brand and over the next few years the brand will grow in many other categories– accessories being one of them.

Pamela: How do you find time for YOU in your busy world? What do you love to do during Meaningful Me Moments?

Ramy: My free time is spent with my family– first and foremost. If my kids have a game, show, or school event I try to make it. Family dinners have become even more important, it’s a great way to connect even if it’s a few times a week. Because my days and nights are sometimes hectic I can appreciate the downtime more than ever before. I’m more focused when I have more to juggle.

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Pamela: Quick, you only have 2 minutes to prep and pamper your face. What are you top makeup/skin products?

Ramy: Neutrogena face wash and perfect tinted toner is my savior. I like a lot of Neutrogena products– the eye makeup remover is my favorite. As for makeup, I’m a big Laura Mercier fan, especially the lip gloss. I usually carry two at a time.

Pamela: Balance is a loaded, unrealistic goal, I prefer “Happy Formula”. So, what’s your Happy Formula for managing marriage, three kids, a growing fashion/lifestyle empire, and finding time for yourself?

Ramy: I’m not sure I’ve found the answer, but I genuinely enjoy the way I live my life. My husband is my rock and a big supporter both at home and at work. My kids bring me joy every day, which isn’t to say they don’t drive me nuts, but they will always be my reason to smile! Work enables me to have a passion outside my home. I believe in what we are building at Ramy Brook and I’m excited to share it with the world.D86699E3-C70F-4709-93FA-A6235EEBCBD2

Currently reading my sister’s book, of course, Your Best Age is Now by Dr. Robi Ludwig.

Currently drinking Diet Coke by day and chardonnay by night.

I hope my kids think mom is smart and  cool.

Motherhood is a blessing.

The best advice my mom ever gave me was “Be true to who you are.”

 

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*momBOSS – She’s nurturing, compassionate and focused. She’s always directing, managing and scheduling. She IS home. She is the link that brings everyone together. She is her own woman. She is not perfect. She is juggling and trying to find her happy formula for a meaningful life. Her motto is Always Be Your Best You, which could mean a messy kitchen takes a back seat to applying mascara. 

Are you a momBOSS or know one that we should know about? Leave a comment below and you/she could be featured next. Check back every Wednesday for an interview with an incredible mom that, I hope, will inspire you to find your happy formula, whatever that may mean for you.

PS In case you missed it, I’m hosting a new mom lifestyle show Pamela+Vanessa #momsandwhine.

Check out  Pamela+Vanessa #momsandwhine every Monday 9:30pm EST. We’ll be laughing, whining, and wining. And we have amazing weekly giveaways!

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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.

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Day in The Life of Motherhood

Motherhood A Day in the Life aka Why Bother Making Plans

Motherhood A Day in the Life … So, where should I begin … oh, yes, 1am!

1amMs. Ilana Rose (now 2.5-years-old) is whining/sobbing. “Mama, ahah pee pee”. Wait, what? We sleep through the night. But, Okay,  you’re having bowel issues.

5am– Ms. Ilana Rose (who started daycare last week) is whining/sobbing. “Mama, ahah pee pee”. Wait, what? We sleep through the night. But, Okay, you’re a bit off since starting daycare.

5:10am – I’m not moving and not sleeping. Icing up the lower back/coxic bone area with Dr. Teal’s Muscle Relief Cream. Two toddles is no joke.

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5:15am – 5:45am Ms. Ilana Rose doesn’t want to sleep and I’m not in good form. Normally, I’m all for cry and leave me alone, but daycare has her in a tizzy. Striking a balance of comfort without coddle, I wake the hubby (HOW DOES HE SLEEP THROUGH ALL THE NOISE ANYWAY?!!) to go into her room and quietly put her on the potty,then let her know it’s still dark and time to sleep. This doesn’t work – twice!

6:10am – The morning rush has come. Time for my quick bathroom run and edited morning beauty routine, using 3-out-of-6 products. With toddlers you need plan A, plan B and plan S*#T if you want to #AlwaysBeYourBestYou

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6:15am – Ms Ilana Rose has her beauty routine- brushing teeth. Wait, what’s that on your tongue? ____ insert preferred profanity

6:20am – Wake up daddy to show our booboo and enjoy a three-way-cuddle. Ilana is sad about her spot.

6:35am – Ms. Ilana Rose is ready for wardrobe and hair. PS Styling a toddler with curly hair requires patience and good tools. Thanks Wet Brush Mini.

6:55am – Baby Buddha, aka David (now 15-months-old) wakes up and assumes lotus position. He’s mumbling and then he spots us approaching, through the glass French doors of his room. Ilana plays while David does what he does best, laugh, while he’s being changed.

7:15am – EVERYONE is hungry. We head downstairs. Cue the back pain of holding one that is walking and one that you can’t yet trust to walk while the other is walking. Does that make sense? You know what I mean. If not, pardon my writing. It’s not even 8am and I’m exhausted!!!

7:25am-8am – Feeding David cream-of-buckwheat kasha, while Ilana drinks her milk and feeds herself mashed prunes. Then David chills in his chair with a car book, while I assist Ilana with her kasha.

8am – I scarf down leftover kasha and fruits. This is not an #AlwaysBeYourBestYou, healthy breakfast. I eat less than the kids. It’s one-of-those-mornings.

8:20am – Grandpa is going to work late and lives down the block. Sweet. Watch David, while I take Ilana to daycare!!

9am – Back home and ask grandpa for 5-more-minutes. Grab a LUNA bar (still HUNGRY), green tea with a spoon of matcha powder and my adorable Old Navy walking-the-kids-in-the-park bag. Oh, gotta check emails for a hot minute.

9:15am – I have the best Father-in-Law! David is outside in the stroller waiting for mommy. Off to the park. Secure doctor appointment for Ilana 11:30am, today. Hmm. Rggg. I don’t want to drag David. What if he gets sick. Babysitter comes through, last minute.

9:30am-11am – Swinging, playing, laughing, pushing his bubble machine and making me laugh my tooshy off. I’m so lucky to be David’s mom.

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11am – Babysitter takes David. I take to the wheel. Mad dash to get Ilana and pray to make it back to daycare by 12:15pm or she’ll miss lunch.

12pm – Wait, didn’t we have an 11:30am appointment. Ilana is so exhausted, she rests at the office. Good news: it’s just a canker sour. Put honey or rose preserve on the spot and we’ll be good.

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12:20am – Ilana falls asleep on the way home. Poor thing.

12:30pm – Hungry hippo, aka Ilana, eats mama’s meatballs, pasta and loads of steamed veggies. I’m SO HAPPY she’s eating more.

1:30pm – Ilana is in bed. The babysitter has left. David is in bed.

1:40am – Wait, I’m hungry too!!

2pm – 2:45pm Call hubby to tell him all is well in motherhood land. Field calls from grandparents and great-grandma. Ya, we’re THAT kind of family. #Blessed

2:45pm – 3:30pm Power nap with two phone call interruptions, but i’ll take it.

3:30pm – 4:30pm – Wow, loving the energy rush. Why not change bedding, unpack hubby’s luggage from business trip, and start this post?

4pm – Baby Buddha is awake and talking to himself. 25-minutes later he starts to talk to me “Mama, bee beep” He loves cars. “Mama, amm amm” He loves to eat.

4:30pm – “Mama ah ah pee pee.” A potty trained baby is good, except that they no longer chill in bed. They have needs! I’m coming my darling.

4:45pm – Ilana is dressed and we head to David. My mom pops in after work. Yes! I love help and good company of adults.

5:30pm – Everyone eats – even me.

6pm – Following some in-door play and counting games, it’s off to the park.

6:45pm – Walking back home, Ilana wants to push her brother’s stroller. I lower the handles and watch, realizing this was long, but blessed day. Don’t blink. It will pass. #MakingAMentalPicture AND taking a real one, for daddy.

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7pm – Last meal of the day, then it’s off to bed for David.

8:30pm Ilana is in bed, later than usual, but she got to see grandparents come over.

8:35pm – Too exhausted to eat anything dinner worthy. Tea and grilled cheese sandwich with sliced tomatoes always does the trick.

9pm – Physical Therapist arrives. Like I said, two toddlers is NO JOKE.

10:15pm – Delusional Me meets Reality Me. RM: “Hi, you’re not blogging tonight. You can’t even spell your own name.” DM: “Bi&ch.” But, she’s right. Off to bed, but first: check weather, plan tomorrow’s outfit and prep breakfast. Attempt a few pages of The Paris Wife.

 

If this sounds like a day in your life, grab a glass of Rosé, and park it here when the kids are napping, or when you just need a minute to yourself. I’m going to be making a better effort to post, now that one of the kiddos is in day care. But, you know, things rarely go according to plan in The Land of Motherhood!

As always ,wishing you a blessed day full of style and smiles. Oh, and don’t forget to #AlwaysBeYourBestYou !

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.

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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?