Boy Mom

I knew once my maternity leave was over, the laissez faire lifestyle we had all grown accustomed to would soon end. And oh, how quickly it did. Once back at work, I got a promotion which has proven to be challenging and rewarding in every way. (Side note: hip hip for getting a promotion two weeks after being back at work, eh?) Thomas' schedule got more intense as a UPS driver and his hours have been longer and longer. Caleb is teething and eating solids (which makes dinner time more interesting), and Liam is soaking up learning letters, spelling and reading books every day.

All wonderful things but the challenge of being a working mom has been more prevalent than ever. I don't get home with the boys until about 5:30 and from there I hit the ground running. Dinner, packing the next day's lunches, making sure Caleb has enough milk to bring to daycare, baths, and laundry all greet me the second I get home. And then there's that little bit of trying to spend quality time with the boys.

Some days it feels seamless and others....well, not. Liam is grumpy, Caleb is hungry and wanting to nurse for an hour and my arms are stretched thin. When one of the boys has a bad day, it wears on us all. We are all tired at the end of the day and it can be difficult to be patient. I can get so focused on all the things I need to get done before I go to bed that I forget to just love on my boys.

Like when I keep saying "later" to Liam after his incessant requests to read a book together.

When I let Caleb play too long in his gym instead of cuddling him.

When I take things too seriously instead of remembering that in 5 years, the tempter tantrums will diminish.

Since Caleb was born, I've learned how different my personality is from Liam's. Caleb has my temperament and Liam has Thomas'. He's emotional, dramatic, sensitive, pushes boundaries, needy, and so NOT a people pleaser. He has been my greatest challenge. On a particular difficult night, I called my mom in desperation. She reminded me that I am exactly the mother that he needs. When God created Liam, he knew I would be the perfect mama for him. Perhaps it's good for him that I'm easy going. Imagine the tiffs we would have if we were both tornadoes!

As Caleb matures I notice how him and Liam balance each other out. They are so different from each other and I'm so thankful for that. Caleb LOVES Liam and does not care that he lays on him, pretends to be Batman and fight the bad guys with him, or squishes the crap out of his cheeks (I don't blame him for that one). I hope that love for each other never ends.


First Day of Summer

These days we've been barbecuing almost every other night which basically means we've been eating like kings. Chicken, baked potatoes, veggie skewers, salmon burgers, turkey burgers, hot dogs, sausage, we've had it all and I'm loving it. Thomas will swim with Liam in between checking the grill and slowly Liam has been learning how to swim. If I can get my act together, I'll put him in swim lessons in the next month or so but life with a newborn really changes things. Working on it.

This little guy has been loving his play gym. I DIYed this which now looks much different and more how I intended it to look. I was waiting on a few wooden teethers that I ordered from Etsy to come in. He loves batting them and smiles and laughs at them. It's the cutest when I catch him cracking himself up. Caleb is such a joyful baby and it's such a pleasure spending our days together.

Liam is his usual self again. Right after Caleb was born, he was super defiant and threw a lot of tantrums. Thankfully, I think he's fully adjusted to life with Caleb and his attitude has shifted. As the weather heats up (or is already hot rather!) it's hard playing outside since Caleb is still so little so I've had to get creative with daily activities. Sometimes that means jumping on the bed, playing in a tub of water outside, packing boxes with me (he strangely loves this), coloring together, activity worksheets from education.com , etc. And some days I just send him off to daycare for some socialization. 🙈 

^^^Always watching big brother^^^


High Rise Flares

 Tank: Target | Pants: Asos | Hat: Target | Heels: Zara, similar

Skinny pants will always be my favorite and most reliable style but as I've gotten older I've turned to flares more and more. Nothing super dramatic but with a high waist they can be super flattering, especially since I'm still losing the baby weight. Gotta hide that tum tum. Oh, how I missed my high rise pants! These are last season from Asos and still one of my favorites because of how long they are. At 5'11 it's hard to find pants that are long enough and I like my flares to be about half an inch longer than the standard length. Shopping the tall section on Asos' website is a game changer because everything is the perfect length!

Hope y'all have a happy Monday!
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Nursing Friendly Diet

It was important to me that when Caleb was born I would breastfeed as long as possible. I wasn't able to nurse Liam longer than 6 weeks and I was determined to nurse at least 2 months with Caleb.

It's been a bumpy road as it often can be with breastfeeding. I had mastitis, a bad latch, blisters. It was excruciating making it to this point but it's been well worth it. Caleb is a big eater (6-8 oz per feeding and he's only 7 weeks!) and now that we've mastered breastfeeding, my focus has shifted to my milk supply. Thankfully I've only had to supplement a handful of times and though it feels like life centers around feeding him it's been well worth it.

A healthy diet is crucial to maintaining your milk supply. I've found several foods to aide in feeding my little chunk of love.

Granola: I add granola from Trader Joe's to plain greek yogurt with a little honey and eat it daily as a snack. It's delicious and the honey makes it seem a bit like a dessert. A bit. 😉 I also eat oatmeal for breakfast every day.

Flax seed: I'm still experimenting with this but so far it's a great additive to oatmeal and lactation cookies (more on that later). 

Eggs: Scrambled or fried, it's one of my favorite healthy breakfasts. Or dinners. 😜

Healthy protein: Think salmon and chicken. Even if you're not a nursing mom, this is some of the best healthy protein you can eat. I make it a general rule to avoid red meat.

Lactation cookies: This is my favorite recipe and even the boys love them. I bought these too and while they're more convenient, the homemade version is more delicious (and cheaper). Cookies are nice to have around for those hangry moments when you're starving and need a little something. Plus I feel okay about eating them since they're boosting my supply. Right?? They're particularly great at 3am. Just sayin.

Mother's Milk tea: I drink a cup a night and notice a huge difference. Plus it's been nice to have hot tea every night. 

WATER: Staying hydrated is essential; water helps your body make milk. I drink about 80-100 ounces a day and make a point to keep my favorite water jug by me at all times. As a general rule when the baby is nursing, I be sure to drink water as well. He eats, I drink.

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