Life

Motherhood // The first three months

Just yesterday my little Stella had her 4 month appointment which really got me thinking about how quickly this whole thing has gone down. It’s so true what they say! Throughout my pregnancy, I was happily surrounded by a large group of friends and family who were also pregnant (no seriously, my cousin, two sister-in laws, my best friend just to name a few) so I had no shortage of resources for asking questions as what to expect and it’s been so nice to have them as support from day to day (and I’ve been using them!). As a new parent, there are so many things happening for the first time and I hate to admit it but Andrew and I would turn to google almost every night when something we thought a bit off was happening and guess what, it was all natural and fine. Reading our search history would be comical and I feel like we’ve only just begun! As I’m writing this and reflecting on Stella’s first three months, it’s amazing how much I already forget but here are a couple of thoughts experiences that stick out and thought I would share.

Feeding

Feeding a big deal for your little one and I think I only slightly realized how big of a deal until we were in it. I took a breastfeeding course in preparation and felt like I was ready to hit the ground running! While we were in the hospital, with the help of the lactation consultant we were able to get Stella to latch but it wasn’t an awesome one. I literally almost lost it on one of them (they really get in there and grab and squeeze) and I just wanted to get out of there! They suggested that I start hand expressing my colostrum which I basically laughed at the lady for. It was the tiniest, smallest little drop that would come out and she wanted me to collect like an ounce of it. Tedious was a huge understatement. Luckily once I got home and with the help of my mom, we got it figured out and all seemed swell until week 2 when I got mastitis. After that feeding has gone quite smoothly but it was a major hurdle for us and involve some painful feeds.

Sleep

So yeah, it’s not great! That being said, it’s not all that awful either. I went into this journey knowing that I wouldn’t be getting an uninterrupted sleep for a long time. Years, since we plan to have more children but again, that’s an obvious statement right? What I didn’t expect is how much of a “thing” it is for Stella. It’s like once you pass the breastfeeding hurdle of motherhood (if you so choose to do so) it’s the sleep and then I imagine once you overcome that hurdle, guess what? There’s a new one! For about the first two months of her life, she would sleep pretty much everywhere which was great – she had a serious love affair with her car seat and would sleep in there for hours! For my birthday this year, we went to a pub with some friends and she slept the whole time which was amazing. But we’re now entering a more structured schedule which we’ve actually already experienced great results with. If anything, I have to teach myself to get to bed earlier! I’m such a night hawk and I experience a second wind around 9:00pm and have to remind myself of the cute little wake up calls I’ll be getting soon.

Stella Baby 

She has many nicknames, Stells, Stell Baby, Stelly, the list goes one but she really coming into her own personality which is so nice to witness. Everyone told us, wait until the 6 week mark, it’s a real game changer and they were right! At first their sight is limited (as well as their cognitive development, naturally) and don’t make connections with your face etc so it could sometimes feel rewardless. But after about 6 weeks we as parents had grown and so had she. We were better at understanding what she needed and were able to be a little more proactive. It’s so nice when they do recognize you and they give a little smile, it melts you! Now that she’s in her fourth month, she’s able to grabs things and loves toys. My living room has been overrun with things that I said I would never keep in my living room but she loves them and it’s great to keep her happy and occupied so I can get other things done as well. I think I underestimate how much fun I would have dressing her and shopping for her. I really have to hold myself back because I could go completely bananas and the sad part is, they grow out of it so quickly but when they have that outfit on… it’s the best!

Me, myself and I

One thing that I’ve learned over these past couple months is acceptance. That may seem strange but I had so many ideas of what life would look like, what I would look like and things I knew I DID not want to happen yet I’m just accepting things as they come now versus having any expectations at all. I’m no longer on my own schedule (which is a major adjustment) and getting little tasks done take me much longer (should be no surprise here but I’m still surprised at how long things are taking me now versus life before babe). It’s exciting to add the role of mother to my life and it’s certainly been, and will continue to be quite the learning experience. In the beginning weeks I would make a list of things to get done around the house. Well that was a big eye-opener. I would be home ALL DAY and not get anything done? It was hard to accept that fact but I had to learn to move on from it. I stopped making those giant lists and started with one task a day. I think I was forgetting that the parenting part was supposed to be number one and that it was OK to not get to the zillion other things I wanted to.

I’m trying to find the balance of being a mom, working part-time, social life and being a good friend and it’s been harder than I thought. I’m sorry if I’ve had to cancel plans with you but I find myself over committing and then having to cut back. This month, I’m trying more than ever to tailor the amount of plans I make so I leave time to be more in the moment, do fun spontaneous things with my little family (Mackie included) and then also just do nothing with them as well. I’m also in love with other moms. I think I lacked something in my soul before – maybe it’s because I wasn’t fully comprehending the task at hand or maybe I was a witch but other moms are the bomb. I was terrible, I would be the biggest eye-roller out there “Oh you have to cancel plans because your baby is sick? What does that have to do with you?”, “Oh, you’d rather go on a vacation with your family than with your girlfriends?”, “Oh you have to leave work to deal with child-care issues?”. Yeah, I was the WORST but happy to report that I have mad respect for moms (you too Mom!) and even more so for those single moms. HOW do they do it? I’ll never know.

Photography by: Laura Collins Design 

xx

This Weekend

:: A cute new catch all from one of my favourite cities ::

I may be alone here but I find it hard to find balance on weekends. I’m always excited for them because hey, it’s the weekend yet I suffer from the weekend list syndrome. Throughout the week I’ll take note of things I wasn’t able to get to and ensure that I do them on the weekend. These lists can get quite lengthy and even with Andrew’s help they can seem overwhelming yet week after week, I make them. Why do I do this to myself? I only get upset if we don’t check off enough things and then next thing you know it, it’s Sunday evening and I feel like we barely relaxed. Same goes for making plans. I’ll make too many weekend plans on top of the list and BAM, there it goes without a long brunch with my favourites (Stella, Mackie and Andrew). So that’s it – no more lists and minimal plans (how am I just sorting this out now?). The snowfall we had here in Toronto was warmly welcomed on Sunday because that literally slowed everything down, it was almost like Mother Nature knew. Here are some pics from my weekend.

 

:: Stars on stars on stars for Stella! (crappy iPhone pic but that face!!!) ::

:: This is kinda funny, I was just casually filling this out and afterwards thought it was hilarious that Pizza came up quite quickly ::

:: Coffee date with these cute gals ::

:: Already shared my excitement for these dining room chairs I acquired from Elle & Eve consignment – it feels really good when its worth the wait and sitting on foldable IKEA chairs for months ::

xx

Motherhood // The Start of Life with Stella

Little Miss Stella is three months old this week and I’m in full on disbelief. It oddly feels like she has been with us forever while also only arriving yesterday. So much has happened with her development and us as parents it’s impossible to document it all (tell that to the million pics on my iPhone) yet I wanted to start a motherhood series on my blog. Share my updates and learnings as I take on this new role as a mother. It is STILL so weird to type that out. Now lets start from the start, shall we? I have a draft of a post sitting there that I had started before Stella had arrived and was too nervous to share! It was my thoughts on motherhood, pre-motherhood. I’ll considering sharing that post later down the line perhaps? I’m sure there will be come comical statements being made.

:: This is Stella a couple weeks old – perhaps even a month? It almost feels like a blur ::

My Birth Story of Stella

Don’t worry – I’ll spare you any gross or gory details 🙂 It was a casual Saturday, I had just finished hosting a bookclub brunch and Andrew had just arrived home from closing up his family cottage. He had considered not coming home that evening but looking back, I’m SUPER glad he did. We had ordered some of our favourite Thai food and I remember now, when we went to pick it up, I was having these “cramps”. I had just figured that they were nothing. I was due on November 9th and this was the 29th of October so I really didn’t imagine we would be moving towards labour so soon. Fast forward a couple of hours and we’re just lounging in our living room and I was enjoying a glass of wine and I remember turning to Andrew and casually saying, these cramps are coming and going, I wonder if these are contractions? How are people supposed to know what contractions feel like without having felt them before? I texted my sister-in-law and she said that she felt that if they were coming and going to start watching the time and see how close/far apart they were. I also consulted this hilarious 8.5×11 print out from the OB titled the Labour Decision Tree and it was basically a little map that told you when it was go time. My water hadn’t broken and my mucus plug (they should rename this guy, just sounds gross) hadn’t dropped. Anyways considering neither of those actions took place, I just figured these “cramps” would go away. It also just felt like I had to use the washroom, a number two. I never knew that’s what it felt like! I headed upstairs to bed around 11:00pm and wanted to try and sleep it off. It’s actually kind of hilarious because I was so clearly in labour with contractions coming quicker and the paint of them increasing yet I was still in denial. It was around 1:00am that Andrew and I decided to call triage who then proceeded to suggest we come in and get checked out. I was so sure that we would be turned away, I didn’t even think we would be needing our hospital bag. Good thing Andrew was smart enough to ignore me.

We checked in and I remember leaning over the chair in pain while we were registering and trying to breathe through but I still didn’t believe that this was happening. We head into triage, I get undressed and the nurse hooks me up and starts gathering info. The doctor wasn’t around so a student came in and chatted with us hinting towards the reality that these things can take a long time and not to get too excited. While she is there with us, these contractions are REALLY coming… super painful and I’m just trying to get through them finding comfort in standing, leaning over (random). I’m now slowly turning into the frantic ladies you see in the movies and squeezing the bejesus out of Andrew. The initial nurse who checked me in is noticing (read: hearing me groan) and decides that since the doctor is busy she should head up there and just see if I’m getting close. She pops up and says “You’re 5 cm dilated, you’re going to have this baby very soon!” I turned to Andrew and was like whoa, this is actually going to happen and happen fast! We hadn’t texted our family until this point and Andrew sends out a text to our fam. The nurse asks if I would like drugs and I say YES.

We head upstairs to the delivery room and I’m all about getting these drugs because, well it’s damn uncomfortable and painful. It felt like HOURS before the anesthesiologist arrived. Like HOURS. I remember just staring at the door waiting (while trying to make it through each contraction) and every time someone new came in (a lot of people come in by the way, it’s like a kitchen party) I would look at them like “is it you? are you going to help me?”. Since my OB wasn’t in that evening (this is now around 3:00am) a member from his team came in to introduce herself and she immediately entered the room by saying, I’m not the person you are hoping for but I remember thinking she was cool, smart and I was happy she would be delivering the babe. Around 45 minutes later the epidural was administered and MAN was that a game changer. I also didn’t realize that you CANNOT move while they are giving it to you. As I mentioned, I’m rolling around the bed like a crazy person, moaning and groaning in pain, how the hell am I not going to move. Andrew held me still and I tried not move at all (they also tell you the scary damage that can be done if you do move) which is a good motivator.

It’s hard for me to recall but after the epidural, it was really just a crazy, miraculous set of events. I felt SO MUCH better and shockingly enough, they suggested that I try to get some rest before pushing, Yeah, totes, I’ll just have a quick nap before I do the scariest thing in my life, cool. I was almost fully dilated (!!!!) and it would be go-time shortly. Andrew is a great sleeper and can sleep anywhere so I think he caught some zzz’s while I remember just lying there being like HOLY moly. Before I knew it, the OB was back in the room and was like, lets do this! She checks me out and is like WHOA your babe’s head is right there! Want to touch it? GROSS! Was my immediate thought and then I was like, welp, not sure when else this will ever happen in my life so I went for it. WEIRD!!!! And we started pushing (not feeling anything a this point which is awesome) and after a couple rounds STELLA WAS HERE! They brought her right up to me and I think I was still in full-on shock, looking at Andrew and saying “this is our baby” over and over. I didn’t cry and I don’t think he did either? But the nurses asked him if he wanted to cut the umbilical cord and he politely declined. They were not taking no for an answer so he did it but I remember being squirmy. It was funny. I feel really lucky that my labour only lasted a couple of hours. She was born at 7:11 am and most of the nurses reminded me that this was pretty unusual for a first-time mom like myself.
It was absolutely the most SURREAL moment of our lives. I do feel like I was in shock for a little while after the fact. You know once you’re pregnant that you are going to give birth but man, it’s SO crazy how it all happens! Not to sound super lame-o you but really do love the baby RIGHT AWAY, it’s nuts. To be clear, I wasn’t like an all-loving baby person. You know those ones who just LOVE babies, want to hold them, see them, visit them – yah, not me. So in all honestly there was a time that I considered not evening going this route, I mean I just didn’t really see what the deal was all about but Andrew and I knew we wanted a family. We went for it and I’m so glad we did.

:: Proud Dad heading home! ::

xx

This Week

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:: Her slipper game is stronger than mine ::

It’s been a bit of a blah week weather wise which has lead Stella and I to be indoors perhaps a little more than we like. We’re actually gearing up for a walk with my sister-in law and Stella’s cousin Henry (it’s so nice to have family so close by!) so we aren’t locked indoors and tempted by all the Black Friday deals available today. Are you participating in any Black Friday shopping? I have to admit that it’s easy to get caught up in the savings but I’m trying to resist the urge. Our weekends look a little different these days however I look forward to when A is home to spend some time together (and the potential to sneak away for a badly needed pedicure). Here are some pics from my week (a small selection because somehow, I barely took any pics) – hope you have a great weekend lined up and enjoy it!

img_3079 :: Mackie is adjusting well after a rocky start ::

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:: Stella’s new addition to our coffee table tray. This will not be a permant fixture FYI but I don’t mind the pop of pink ::

xx

Introducing // Stella Rose Bosomworth

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I’m so super happy to be sharing the news of our little arrival – Miss Stella Rose Bosomworth. She was earlier than expected, 10 days early to be exact so we were a little caught off guard but in the best way possible. I’ve been super lucky to have our family be so supportive over these past couple of days and I’m literally trying to savour each and every, teeny, tiny little moment. Everyone always shares how quickly they go by. She’s been such a good baby (not really sure how I can be the judge of that since she’s my first one). Thank you to all who have been in touch, shared kind messages and sent their love – the love around us right now is paramount!

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xx

This Week

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:: Our front step – still not 100% complete but we’ve been focusing on the interior of the home to start. Also – our neighbours are killing it with their Halloween decor, can’t wait to step up our game next year! ::

Since Laura and I work for ourselves (pssssst – check us out at ElsieAndKelDesign.com) I’m working right up until out babe-to-be is ready for arrival but being 38 weeks and moving furniture around has become a bit of a challenge. My mobility for one, is much more limited as well as my energy levels seem to plummet towards the afternoon so when a gross, rainy day showed up yesterday, I slowed things down and took it easy. It was so nice and I actually took a couple of moments to recognize that this could be the last little bit of me time before she arrives (read: so concerned about losing my me time).

 
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:: My make-shift closet shows off all the neutrals ::

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:: Received this in the mail, can’t wait to snuggle up with it this weekend ::

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:: Cool looking pumpkins or are they squash: Either way, into them! ::

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:: Checking in on the progress for our custom closet being built for our master bedroom – can’t WAIT to see this bad boy installed ::

xx

This Week

img_2742 Rolling into the weekend again and I couldn’t be more thankful! As I get further and further along in this pregnancy, I’m feeling a little more anxious. I feel like I’ve been quite cool, calm and collected for the most part until I realized that I’m now considered full-term and could deliver at any day (WHAT?).  This past week was a big one for us in terms of progress – car seat has been purchased (a big one for bringing the babe home!), pre-natal class was attended (and was super helpful) and our dresser for the nursery arrived today (baby laundry in process and smells so good).  Excited to slow down a little this weekend with a spa day tomorrow celebrating my cousin who is a bride-to-be. Hope your weekend treats you well!

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I feel nothing like these photos today – here is sunshine and smiles and I’m feeling a little more like the weather, a little tired, gray and moody (hormones?!).

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xx

This Week

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:: My Grams picked these up for me at Nordstrom and they are the best gummi bears I have ever had! Apparently they are actually made with Dom Perignon ::

Thanksgiving weekend has arrived and brought with it the most glorious fall weather! We’ve been lucky this past week, it’s really been a joy and the ultimate mood pick me up from the gray days we were experiencing last week. A and I are hosting our first Thanksgiving dinner for our families in our new home – which will be super fun. I’m mostly excited to set the table (now that we officially have one!) and have everyone over. Our home is still slowly creeping it’s way to be completed but another major milestone will be hit when we finally receive our sofa on Sunday! So excited to share which one we ended up going with.

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:: Shout-out to my bro for getting festive at our Oktoberfest themed baby party last weekend! :: img_2676

:: Signs of fall that I’m loving – the city gets so pretty around this time of year ::

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:: This STEAL of a dresser we found for our master bedroom. Needs some loving and a stain job but just guess how much I paid for it? You’ll never guess so I’ll have to tell you – $67!!!!! ::

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:: Started the week off with a coffee date with Dad while pretending I’m still in France ::

xx

This Week

Another hectic weeks in the books. I know how everyone talks about how “busy” they are and it gets really annoying when you ask how someone is doing and that’s their response but will it slow down? Considering we have a baby on the way I’m going to go with no, it doesn’t and I just need to adjust to the new norm. This weekend our friends and family are throwing us a co-ed baby party – it will be so nice to see people who we haven’t seen in a while and just overall celebrate this little life milestone we’re about to hit. Each evening we have alone to ourselves I think to myself, these are limited!!!! I hope you have a great weekend!

img_2578 :: The ceremony setting at my best friend’s wedding last weekend ::

img_2558 :: Wedding flowers! ::

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:: Visiting a cute local flower shop, Leaf and Bloom ::

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:: Sourcing tiles, may be the best part of our job ::

xx

This Week

Phew! It’s Fri-yay and I know I’m not the only one celebrating. These past few weeks have been busy to say the least and we’re finally feeling more “at home”. Yesterday evening as I was preparing this post, I was thinking to myself, shit, I don’t have any pretty photos to share of my week and then I was like welp, that’s reality so instead I did a quick tour this AM of our new space and figured I would share what I’m loving thus far. I hate to be “all about the house” (reminder to myself – stop using air quotes!) but they do tend to take over your life especially when you’re more of the DIY type person versus hiring people (lets clarify, I’m totally the type to hire people when necessary but it’s also sometimes great to challenge yourself sometimes, yah?). So tonight, Andrew and I are having a date night which feels like we haven’t had in EVER and it’s a casual one starting with dinner and then a Blue Jays game! Hope you have a good weekend in store, friends.

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:: Hair-tie dish from Andrew’s granny ::

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:: We have a porch people! And a fern! This makes me very happy except, I need to remove those little dead parts ::

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:: We’re usually out of town for this festival and I’m super happy to be finally checking it out this weekend ::

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:: Paint contenders for the nursery! ::

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:: OK this is a life changer – a King sized bed. Andrew and I have spent the majority of our relationship in a double bed and now, we have so much space it’s insane. Please ignore the coverless duvet ::

xx

 

 

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