One of my readers tipped me off to a sweet German website with heartwarming portraits on family life called Little Years. With a little one who just turned 1 on Monday, family life is always on my mind. I adore my son so, so much and want to be the best mama to him while still reaching my own goals and dreams. It’s nice to find a site dedicated to normal, working families who live nicely yet not perfectly, and are somehow able to do it all and still reach career goals in addition to being great parents. It’s encouraging to see, in particular, families much larger than my own who are making it all work.
By the way, did you recently catch the interview Jimmy Fallon had with Gone Girl actress, Rosamund Pike? If you didn’t watch it, you can catch a segment of it here on Hulu. First, she showed up looking gorgeous and not at all like she just had a baby, and next, she spoke so candidly about how she was on the phone being interviewed, while in bed, with her two boys crawling all over her and that her eldest son got his truck stuck in her hair during the call. She confessed to basically having to cut it out before her dress arrived that day for a fitting. I mean, it’s so easy to forget that many other strong and hard-working women are out there playing magician on a daily basis to make their dreams come true while also being great moms to their little ones.
The story of Cecile and Charles in Paris. Cecile is the founder of Smallable.
More from Cecile and Charles
Please visit Little Years for stories in English and German and for more photos too.
Hello and happy new year! I’ve not been in this space to blog since December 26th, the longest blog break I’ve taken in years! Crazy! It’s nice to be back since blog breaks aren’t as fun for me as I guess they should be… I’m always so super eager to get back to blogging! For instance, on Friday I had two lovely things happen in my life. This blog celebrated its 9th anniversary since I’ve been blogging since January 9, 2006 (read my first post). I seriously can’t believe that I’m now into my 10th year and that this time next year, I’ll be a blogger for an entire decade. I never imagined this would become a company and a life altering path for me. This fantastic journey has been so rewarding in countless ways but most of all, I’m grateful to you for joining me.
Also on Friday my dear little son turned 11-months-old. It’s a very lovely feeling to have a baby, so new and helpless in many ways, and then to watch him grow so beautifully, become strong, handsome, clever, spirited, even develop his own likes and dislikes in mere months. He began crawling at 6 months at top speed, walking at 10 months and he has 6 teeth and is already eating solids (in addition to milk) — and is in perfect health. He has a beautiful personality too – a real mix of colors – he will definitely grow up to have strong opinions and a love for people – I can clearly see this already.
Our pediatrician told us she is so impressed by him, that even she isn’t used to babies his age being so bright and ahead of most other babies. Though, honestly, she could have said nothing and I wouldn’t have cared because I’m not invested in making him better than others, I simply want him to follow his own path naturally and on his own terms. Though, of course, being new parents we couldn’t help but to feel very pleased to be praised by our doctor for our dedication. This gave us both a very proud parents moment, and when you are so new to parenting, you need those confidence boosters because it’s a very unknown and long road to embark on – having a child – and an occasional cheering squad is nice from time-to-time. I’m so happy that all of the love and care we put into our son is paying off like this – with both of us home with him full-time, we may be struggling for work balance and trying to squeeze in everything while he’s napping or asleep at night, but it is soooo worth it to see him this healthy and happy. He looks a bit serious in the photo above, he was tired when I shot this on Saturday, but I prefer these quieter moments when he’s not clowning around because I love capturing his silence, his beauty, how lost in thought he appears because I feel like I’m catching a glimpse of “future” him and it really warms my heart.
But enough about parenting. How are you? I hope you all had a very restful and joyful holiday season. Ours was such a delight, we spent it with good friends and family and ate far too many of my homemade cookies and cake, but now I’m off of sugar doing a bit of a detox and my energy is coming back again and I feel like I’m getting my mojo back, slowly, after the lag of the holidays, celebrating a little too much, and chasing an 11-month-old who already looks and acts like he’s 2 or 3!
It’s all so good though – life – and to think that this time last year I was unpacking boxes in this new home with my huge belly and my due date drawing closer and closer. And today I’m talking about my energetic baby who is already walking. Yowser! So much can happen in a single year. In fact, I think that is what my dear little boy has taught me among a slew of other important things – how every moment should be felt and experienced, good and bad, and that so much can change about a person in such a short period of time that nothing is impossible if we will it to be.
Happy 2015 to everyone – I’m so happy to be back to give you another year of (hopefully) happiness, inspiration, creative ideas, support and community.
(Photos: Holly Becker for decor8. Please do not use these images without my written consent since they are of my little boy, thank you. Just pop me an email. Thanks!)
Hello dear friends! This week has been CRAYZEEEE. Really crazy! I mean, beyond crazy! We had our wallpaper finished in the entryway (LOVE) but some needed to be stripped and reapplied because it was installed wonky. Ugh. But it is all set as of today. Plus I’ve been supah busy with my little boy because he is mega active crawling and practicing his mad walking skillz — we are just a non-stop party here at planet baby from dawn to dusk. AND. WELL…
(There is always an “AND, WELL…” with little ones) Our baby has entered some new stage – it’s like BOOM! – he turned 9 months on Sunday and the next day he was having major attachment anxiety whenever we laid him down to sleep at night and during the day, my little scheduled napper (2x a day, sometimes 3!) from the day he came home suddenly turned into I SLEEP WHEN I WANT napper. None of this bothers me, I mean what can you do, he’s a baby for God’s sake. I can’t take away his iPhone or ban him from using SnapChat, so I’m just rollin’ with it.
But man, my little dude turned his new age and yowser… It’s like HELLO NEW BABY and what did you do with the son I had just gotten used to for the past 9 months?
And there is something else. He is expressing frustration in ways that make me want to laugh really hard. But I don’t. But I want to because his frustration is always shown in the most comical ways. So okay, imagine this scenario. Him: Sitting in his high chair eating his carrot puree something or another. Me. Facing him, also seated, making faces, singing songs and coaxing him into eating because suddenly mealtime went from normal eating to let’s! play! with! our! food! and! grab! the! spoon! non-stop! Eating has turned into a 45 minute circus and I’m the clown.
There I am feeding him and suddenly with the force of 100 men, he grabs the spoon that I’m using and tries to flip it so the food goes everywhere. What I then usually do, depending on my own schedule, is:
- Option 1. Could care less, let him grab it, throw it, smear it, play with it, whatever. Puree for all!
- Option 2: If we need to leave soon or I have work to get to, I usually
pry the spoon from his hand using the jaws of lifetake it gently out of his hand and try to continue feeding him.
A highly emotional domino reaction usually follows if Option 2 was deployed. First, a long very deep grunt. Then, his face reddens. He sticks his arms straight down and makes very tight fists. His grunt gets more intense and deeper. A moan. A bit intimating honestly. He stares into my eyes. His eyebrows go dark red. He wants the spoon back – he did not like that I took it from him. He is literally turning into the Incredible Hulk. I wait for his buttons to fly off his shirt.
The whole time I want to burst out laughing (it’s super cute watching all of this because there is clearly no reason to express so much emotion) but I need to respect his emotions because it feels wrong to invalidate him. So I just talk him down out of his tree in my gentle mommy voice, remain caring and sweet and change the subject. Usually he’ll move on quickly shown by laughing at nothing in particular or planting big wet kisses all over my face.
This has to be a stage. Right? Or is he a teenager trapped inside of a 9 month old body? But wow, baby emotions are something else. Intense. And also very hard to make much sense out of.
Yeah so because his sleep schedule has changed and because I have so much stuff already going on in my life (new book deal I’m negotiating, house redecoration project, tons of work stuff, wrapped up my current 4 week long Blog Boss e-course today with 400 students (!), prepping for 5 business consults next week) it really is bonkers crazy here. Which is why I went missing on decor8 this week.
But you know something that is funny about all of this baby stuff? I don’t mind it now that the sleepy swaddled child changed into an energetic fireball that is apparently a very passionate little person. And I swear I’m not playing Pollyanna to save face nor am I secretly smokin’ funny things in the laundry room so I can fool all of you because truth be told some days I’m like SERIOUSLY? This? Again? But through it all I am learning a lot about myself (I’m a damn patient women and a really committed, good mother, a surprise to me because you never know what kind of mother you will be until you have a child)… I also love having this little boy to care for – my little son – because it’s rewarding and gives me yet another wonderful thing to live for — another reason to get up, work harder, be better. I like the “crazy” in it all. I like that there are new emotions in our home, this new energy, so young and spirited. It’s nice to have a little challenge, some friction, a new opinion around here to shake things up and bring in a fresh new perspective. I’ve always loved having change and movement and zeal in my life and now I do. An 80cm tall tornado.
See you tomorrow, I’ll be back to blogging regularly again.
By the way moms out there, is all I just talked about a 9 month old thing?
(images: holly becker for decor8)
I thought to quickly pop in this weekend to highlight 7 cool brands for baby boys to check out. Most of these shops have things for baby girls too but it seems like stuff for boys can be harder to find, at least cute stuff, so I want to write these posts from time-to-time to highlight brands I love and use. Here’s the first post I wrote with 5 brands for baby boys that was also super cute, so click here to check out that round up too.
1. Baby mocs from Hubble and Duke. I have three pairs for Aidan (tan, mustard and gold) and he wore one out the other day and everyone who saw them thought they were the cutest. And they are. I LOVE these mocs sooo much. These shoes are decor8 tested and approved.
2. A cozy baby blanket (and all of the baby blankets) from Designed By Artists. I especially love that they are dated with the year of birth so I’ll cherish my blanket, And So The Adventure Begins 2014, for years to come. This blanket is decor8 tested and approved.
3. Zuzii footwear from Los Angeles in suedes and leathers. I know, more shoes. I can’t get enough.
5. Super cool trainers handmade in Spain from MAA. When Aidan is walking around I’m definitely picking up a pair for him because they’re just so unique.
6. Petit Bateau clothing from France, the iconic label that everyone loves. I have their sleep suits and some rompers and really like them. Clothing from Petit Bateau is decor8 tested and approved.
7. Mini Boden. I had no clue that Boden had baby stuff until recently. I must order a few things for winter for little Aidan because I love their bright, happy colors and we need that during our gray days ahead. And c’mon, star patches on the knees? Super cute.
Do you have a baby boy (or toddler)? Where do you shop for him? Leave your links and tips below, I’d love to know!
(images linked to their sources above)