Let’s be Honest Mamas: Simplified Holidays

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Happy Holidays everyone!  Christmas is just around the corner and it makes me a little sad to be honest.  I want the holidays to feel a little longer, but they never do! I am so happy to be back this month with the Honest Mamas group of beautiful ladies.  This month the lovely Kacie from www.elementsofellis.com asked me and a few other mamas to be part of this month’s Q&A about Simplified Holidays.  I love that title because its something I want for my holiday traditions and overall life, to be simple.  I love the minimal Christmas decor and style and we are pretty laid-back with how much we do the day off.  So, I hope you enjoy reading my answers and make sure to read the other collaborating mama’s posts!  Links are attached at the bottom 🙂

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1. How do you make the holidays less hectic around your home?

Since Atticus was born, we decided we wanted to make the holidays less hectic and more chill.  We agreed not to go to several family houses in one day and that is will be easier (with a baby) to just decide in one meeting place, even if that meant not seeing the whole family.  So far, we have planned all our holidays to be at our house and family to come over.  As of food, we try to keep it simple and not stress with making a feast.  We keep it traditional with a turkey for Thanksgiving and pork for Christmas.  A few sides and one easy to make dessert.  We have kept it minimal with decorations, as you have gathered we are super laid-back on everything haha.  We want to make a tradition of always put up and decorate the Christmas tree on Thanksgiving weekend.  A few Christmas decorations around the house, including fresh garland and greenery.  The one thing we are horrible about are gifts, we don’t know how to buy gifts!  With Atticus so far it has been easy and we know exactly what we want for him.  However, for each other or the rest of the family… not so much!  We are very much the worst procrastinators.  I know even know what I want for myself! LOL.  We feel it is really important to make this a very special holiday for Atticus and we really don’t care if we get something for each other or not.

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2. In a season inundated with receiving, how do you teach your kids about giving?

Atticus is just a one-year old toddler and still doesn’t quite comprehend the act of sharing let alone giving.  Still, this is something we want to teach him.  I would love for him to make his own gifts to give to grandparents and ourselves.  I think is just the cutest, most especial gift to give and cherish forever.

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3. In order to enjoy the holidays, it’s important to be thoughtful with your celebrations and only do the things that make you happy. Are there traditions you’ve said “no” to? How did you make that change/tell your friends and family “no” is a way that didn’t upset them?

We haven’t set any big traditions in stone with family and friends.  The one big one was not going around several houses in one day.  Saying “no” is hard, but the comfort and sanity of my child, and ourselves, is first.  Having one big gathering is more especial to me than being so stressed getting in and out of the car with a bored hungry baby.  Am I right!?

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4. It’s easy to overspend this season. Share your tips for limiting the amount you spend on gifts. (example; making gifts, the 4 gift rule, etc.)

I have noticed I tend to spend more during the black Friday weekend and I want to control that for the years to come.  Again, I need to get better at planning way before the holidays come around.  I know for Atticus so far, we want to get him one “big gift” and a few smaller gifts to go with the bigger gift and books, always books.  I want to get better at the tradition of stuffing the stockings, every year we try to do this!

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5. Preparing meals for the family can be stressful. Do you have a simple meal you prepare ahead of time to help lessen the stress?

We are pretty laid-back with food.  I seasoned the meat one or two days before and keep it in the fridge.  That is the most preparing I do to be honest.  The rest is done since we wake up the day of, like potato salad, bread in the over, rice, mac and cheese.  Food is one thing I want to bring a little bit of my culture so rice and pork shoulder, and probably plantains,  is an always definitely on Christmas day!

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Love,

Natalia

Collaborating Mamas:

Kacie Ellis elementsofellis.com // Amber Hill amberlately.com // Kymberly Janelle lifewithkymberlyjanelle.com // Stephanie Pollock stephpollock.com // Emily Lindsey happilylindsey.com // Camille Burley theburleytribe.com

my outfit:

jeans- Madewell / top- Everlane / shoes- Lotta from Stockholm  / hat- Target / watch- Daniel Wellington

his outfit:

top- Zara / pants- Zara (similar) / shoes- Vans

 

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Curious Natalia

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Let’s be Honest Mamas: Postpartum

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Wow, it has been a while since an Honest Mamas post!  We took the summer off to spend time with our family and friends and go on any planned vacations.  This month the lovely Kacie from www.elementsofellis.com asked me and a few mamas to be part of this month’s Q&A.  This one is an important one for me since we are talking about postpartum  depression and postpartum life.  Hope you enjoy reading my answers and make sure to read the other collaborating mama’s posts!  Links are attached at the bottom 🙂

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1. Did you deal with the baby blues or postpartum depression? If yes, how long did it last and how did you cope? 

Yes, I have dealt with postpartum depression.  When Atticus was 2 months old I broke down and was diagnosed with Postpartum OCD and Anxiety.  I am still coping with it, but much better! Still go on monthly doctor visits and still on medication.  I relapsed once around July, but I can say that this week I am back to my old self.  Things I have done to make myself better are getting out of the house during the week, have lunch with friends, some therapy, sometimes exercise, travel and talk about it my PPD journey.

2. What are your must-have products for postpartum life? A belly band? Pads? Certain types of clothing?

For a few weeks after birth I rely on pads with witch hazel rounds.  I had a really bad tear, so that helped with pain and healing.  Flowy clothes, I couldn’t stand tight form-fitting clothes because they felt uncomfortable and I didn’t like myself in them.

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3. What is one thing you wish you would have been more prepared for postpartum?

I should have gone back on medication, since I was on them during my second and part of third trimester.  I should’ve read more about what postpartum depression looked like.  I know what depression feels like, but didn’t know about other types under postpartum like OCD and Psychosis.  As for my body, I really didn’t expect to have a third degree tear. I wasn’t prepared for that, but I guess is not something you can prepare for other than follow instructions about healing.

4. Share your favorite postpartum recipe…an easy meal, lactation cookies, etc.  

I would say tacos and fajitas were the easiest recipes to make.  Brown some ground beef and throw a taco seasoning packet.  Or cook some chicken with onions a peppers with fajita seasoning. White rice and chicken was on the menu too.  And of course take out and PB&Js!

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5. What do you love about your postpartum body?

I feel I like my body more postpartum than before I was pregnant.  I feel I am healthier than before and care more about taking care of myself so I am able to take care of my baby boy.

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Collaborating mamas:

Kacie Ellis elementsofellis.com // Amber Hill amberlately.com // Emily Lindsey happilylindsey.com // Camille Burley theburleytribe.com // Victoria Schneider thesoutherntrunk.com

Dress by: Dwell and Slumber 

Pictures by: Merè and Me Photography

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Curious Natalia

I Know You Love Me

One of my worst struggles when Atticus was born was my breastfeeding failure. I tried literally anything I could and ask for all the help in the world. I know I’m not a failure and I know my baby will love me not matter what. Still, the guilt was like a knife in my heart. So I though, if I give him some of my milk once a day I’ll be happy. So I pumped a few times a day. A few times a day made one bottle… ONE! I didn’t produce enough, but I kept being told that I should. At the end I had to decide between getting treated for my postpartum depression or keep giving him my few drops of breast milk. I decided to stop completely and those weeks were so hard. I cried and cried, I was a failure. I though, he is not gonna love me or I will not have this special bond. My heart was broken. But I really needed to get better, my postpartum was getting out of control. Five months have passed and the guilt is gone, as well as my postpartum! Praise Jesus! I know now that that’s not the only way I can be close to him. I’m his mama! I can see in his eyes how much he loves and adores me and I adore him oh so much! So to all those mamas who couldn’t or decided to not breastfeed, you are not less of a mom because of it. I’m so glad for all those mom that could make breastfeeding happen, I wish I could! Still there are others who try to shame us and I really don’t appreciate that. So I decided to let go, for my sanity and health, and to take care of my baby. He is a healthy and big boy!

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In the search of the best bottle for my baby in our formula feeding journey, I found the MAM bottles. So far, they have been the best ones to work for Atticus. He spits up a lot and still does, but with this bottles the amount of spit has calm down and gassiness. The MAM Anti-Colic Bottle helps reduce the stress associated with feedings reducing gas and colic symptoms. Patented ventilation holes in the bottle’s base regulate the pressure balance of baby’s milk, allowing it to flow evenly without bubbles or air pockets. It is so easy to clean and sterilize as well! He really does love this bottles!

Follow MAM:

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Have a great weekend!

Love,

Natatia

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Curious Natalia