Jasemet

MOM BOSS MONDAY 

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Black and white Jasemet Cover with the cutest baby inside!!!

So this new mom thing…I think I’m starting to get the hang of it. What I’m actually getting the hang of is winging it. I’m a pro when it comes to Q’s blow outs and forgetting the diaper bag at home. I can nurse just about anywhere with almost no one noticing and I have to say, it feels good. It feels great to feed my kid whenever I need to, without going to bathroom stall or somewhere inappropriate to eat. One of my favorite Mom accessories are these multipurpose car seat covers. They have allowed me to protect my baby from all those baby crazy stranger hands and come in handy on any occasion. I use mine to feed Q wherever we are, as a blanket when it becomes unexpectedly chilly, and as a seat cover when he sits in shopping carts. It’s definitely a product I would recommend for all moms to have. This week’s mom boss is Shelly of Jasemet and she makes these lovely covers. Be sure to check out her story and receive 20% off  using code: livewellmama!

This week’s mom boss is Shelly and her business is Jasemet

I knew breastfeeding was going to be part of my motherhood journey from the very beginning of my pregnancy. Mother nature always has plans of her own so my first son was born at 26 weeks and I decided to exclusively pump for him. I was blessed to have the opportunity to breastfeed my second son and I quickly realized that I needed a nursing cover. This is when I decided to take out my sewing machine (that my husband gifted a year earlier) and create an extra wide infinity scarf.

My nursing scarves were my “golden item” in my breastfeeding journey. It provided me with that extra layer of privacy that I desired while nursing my son in public. I wanted to give other moms the same feelings that the nursing scarves gave me so I decided on creating and selling them on Etsy. Fast forward to present day; I now offer three types of nursing covers, nursing scarves, nursing ponchos and Jasemet covers.  All of the nursing covers are a 5 in 1 product. You can use them as a nursing cover, car seat cover, hair chair cover, shopping cart cover, and scarf/poncho.

A pregnancy struggle Shelly experienced 

It took us about 2.5 years to finally conceive our first son. Finally being able to see a positive pregnancy test was pure bliss. I had a fairly easy pregnancy with him until my water broke at 26 weeks. I have never in my life seen a baby as small as my son, he weighed 1lb 8 oz and stayed in the NICU for 4 months. Our second son came as a complete surprise but we were over the moon to be pregnant again. I was considered a high-risk pregnancy because of my first son so from 16-36 weeks I had to take weekly progesterone shots. He was born a few days shy of 37 weeks. My boys are now 6 and 3.5 year old and I feel so blessed to be their mother.

A motherhood tip from Shelly

I don’t think you can ever be prepared in becoming a mother.  You can read as many books or talk to as many people as you like but at the end of the day you will find out what works BEST for YOU.  Somedays  you will feel like a complete failure and other days you will be like Super Woman.  Remember to take a breath and enjoy the journey.  At the end of the day, all our children need is love.

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Beautiful Mom Boss, Shelly of Jasemet 

 

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Super fit? Or Fit-ish?

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I’m totally ok with being FIT-(ish)!!!

Before my pregnancy, I naturally had a pretty active lifestyle without even trying. We love being outdoors and the ocean is our favorite. Not until I was pregnant did I decide to top off my active lifestyle with a workout routine. This was mostly due to the Gestational Diabetes. So, shout out to you Gestational Diabetes! You kill-joy party pooper! At the same time, I’m thankful. It really helped me change my lifestyle for the better. After I gave birth to my wonderful gentle giant, I thought I was going to be able to whip it back without any issues. WRONG. Here’s the thing. I actually slept part of my pregnancy and those hormones gave me a boost, making me some type of freak of nature. I labored hard and birthed harder, so I thought I would be back to my pregnancy strength in no time! I surfed some days out of the summer after Q was born, but lost a lot of my confidence and skill. The reality is, there were so many factors and obstacles for me, it was frustrating that I was unable to be where I wanted to be, physically.

I thought, “Hey, I was on a diabetic diet for nearly 9 months. Why not do it again?” So I decided to cut down on carbs. It was easy and it felt good. On top of this, I added a workout routine to my schedule, mixed with breastfeeding and very little sleep. Talk about needing a chill pill. It started to become too much for me and even affected my milk production. I learned that it wasn’t wise to just get up and change my eating habits without realizing how my body would react or how it could affect my baby’s food source. My milk production did not stop but it did decrease significantly. I was pumping 9-12 extra ounces a day and it went down to 4 oz, sometimes even less. Now in retrospect, I should have given my body enough time to catch up on rest and allowed for more healing.

I was too concerned about staying fit, not educated enough about the birth process, and what it really meant to “heal” before going full force again. Through my research, I found a Birth Fit group here in San Diego.  We get to bring our babies, meet other moms, and really focus on strengthening those muscles that may have been weakened through our motherhood journey. So as much as I would like to be a super “fit mom,” for now, I am okay with being “fit-ish.” My focus now is to strengthen from within, slowly, carefully, and efficiently.  I don’t know if you have seen my kid, but he’s only 4 months and weighs 19lbs, so I need to get fit the right way in order to keep up with him.

As of now, I welcome carbs. I try my best to stick to the healthiest forms and I’m not hating it. I actually feel thinner than when I was avoiding them, which really shouldn’t matter but it’s definitely a plus. I take long walks with the baby in the morning, a couple of baby and me yoga classes from home (Youtube videos), and have just started the postpartum mini-series at Birth Fit San Diego. My milk production is exactly where I want it to be. My baby is clearly eating well and now I just need to take it easy and strengthen slowly. The rest will follow. The point of this post is, it’s ok to chill. Listen to your body. Exercise is great but it doesn’t have to be aggressive, so if your body needs more time, give it that. For the time being, as long as my family and I are healthy, I’m okay with starting from scratch, and instead of being super fit, I’m owning that I am “fit-ish”.

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Birth Fit San Diego – Keirsten

Learn More about Birth Fit 

Use coupon code: livewellmama for 15% off your FIT-ish apparel!

Born Free and Me

MOM BOSS MONDAY 

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Baby Q rockin’ his Panda Party Raglan from Born Free and Me

Do any of you other Moms out there get bored with the same old, boring, repetitive prints to dress your little one in? Well, I found a Mom Boss that wasn’t impressed with what kid’s fashion had to offer, so she was inspired and created some pretty awesome stuff for our littles!  Can you even believe the cuteness of this Panda Raglan outfit from Born Free and Me?! Being this cute should literally not be allowed! Okay, so you already know that I meet amazing Moms doing what I do, but I mean come on! This week’s Mom is a SUPER Mom Boss! Keep reading to find out what her other WORK is! Like creating kid’s fashion or being a mom wasn’t already enough…

This week’s Mom Boss is Jules from Born Free and Me

I started Born Free & Me whilst on maternity leave with my first baby, Evangeline as I was fed up with a wash if baby pink florals and Disney themed clothes. I wanted my brand to be fun and playful letting our littles be little.  Like every mum working from home, you try and squeeze as much into nap time as you can and then work away when they’re tucked up at night (or at least that’s the theory). So in between the constant demands of mum life, various tantrums, bouts of teething and sleepless nights, you just kind of get on with it.
My day job is a doctor. I graduated in 2010 and I’m a junior pediatric doctor. When I go back to work this time round, I’ll be working on the neonatal intensive care unit which looks after the extreme prem babies as well as those with serious medical/ surgical conditions in the region. I LOVE IT. That being said, I wanted to find a way to reduce my hours at work so I could be home more with my babies and watch them grow up, so I started a business. It’s so different to everything I’m used to doing but I have enjoyed every minute of it and have found some really kind people who totally get that. I know I’m not the only mama out there trying to make it happen!
A pregnancy struggle Jules has experienced
My pregnancies have been pretty plain sailing I have to say but run into problems with repeated mastitis whilst breastfeeding. I had to be admitted to hospital first time round. (I’m actually sat in the waiting room at the doctor’s surgery waiting for some antibiotics as I type!) Regarding mastitis, I’ve had multiple bouts of it, which mostly I’ve been able to sort out myself (lots of hot/cold compresses and hours spent glued to a breast pump). Glamorous I know. I’ve always chosen to carry on feeding each time it’s happened. I guess I wanted to decide when to introduce formula milk rather than feeling forced to do it. And despite the booby drama, I actually really enjoy breastfeeding my babies. I’ve ended up in hospital twice (once with each baby) because it got so bad. Miles is 5 months old and I’ve started to introduce some formula milk during the days and feed him at night.
A motherhood tip from Jules 
Tips for mums would be to let yourself off the hook if you’re still in your pajamas at lunchtime, your house is a mess or you can’t remember the last time you washed your hair! Just be proud of yourself for making a small human and that they’re alive and well at the end of every day!
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Doctor, Mom Boss, and Creator of Born Free and Me  – Julie, with her adorable son.

 

Born Free and Me Social Media 

https://www.instagram.com/bornfreeandme/

http://www.bornfreeandme.com

Sacred Legacy Arts

MOM BOSS MONDAY

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My beautiful locket made with Mom’s ashes by Sacred Legacy Arts

My sweet baby Q was a wish that my mother made before she passed away. Although I was not ready to start a family, it happened (unplanned) and I couldn’t be more grateful for this beautiful son of mine.  Every time I look at him, I see her and am reminded of how much she wanted me to have a child. Cancer took her from us in April of this year, only 2 months before Q was born. On many occasions I find myself imagining the joy he would have brought to her during her final days.  During my pregnancy journey, I met a remarkable Mother who creates special DNA keepsake jewelry for loved ones to keep their memories close. The necklace I am wearing is made with some of my mother’s ashes and it brings me so much comfort to be able to keep her so close to me at any given time, in such a beautiful way. If you are looking to have a special piece made I highly suggest reaching out to this mama. There are so many beautiful pieces to choose from and there are even keepsakes for you breastfeeding mamas out there! I’m so thankful that Kelly from  Sacred Legacy Arts has taken the time to share her story with us.

Kelly and the story behind Sacred Legacy Arts

I (Kelly) started Sacred Legacy Arts in December of 2014, right after my second son was born.  I was looking both for a creative outlet to give me something to focus on while wrestling with postpartum depression as well as searching for a way to truly honor and manifest a symbol of my birth and breastfeeding journey with both of my children.  I was in the middle of dealing with low supply while fighting to breastfeed my second child.  We needed to use an SNS feeder because I just was not producing enough and my son was losing too much weight.  I wanted to find a tangible, creative way to honor our struggles and triumphs and my experiences as a mother.  That’s when I began experimenting with jewelry making and creating DNA keepsakes.  To me, it just seemed so natural and perfect to fulfill the longing in my heart of what I was looking to manifest.

Sacred Legacy Arts was originally named Ollie & Jai (after my two sons — Judah and Oliver) and was in the beginning a side hobby for me as a SAHM.  As I practiced my skill, it gathered interest from friends and family and I began creating for others.  I soon learned that this was more than just a hobby for me.  It was a therapeutic outlet for both me and the people I created for.  The DNA keepsakes I created were more than just jewelry.  They were tangible expressions and sensory stimulating tools for honoring memories, struggles, and celebrations.  People expressed such joy and fulfillment in being able to have a part of their story casted into wearable jewelry for them to carry and see.  This is when I began branching out and offering my art to others… when I realized just what a positive impact this art form could have on people’s lives.  As the identity and mission of my work began to unfold, I rebranded into Sacred Legacy Arts — describing my work as “tiny time capsules of wearable art [created] out of the most precious, sacred moments of your life.”

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Memories of my mother that I will always have close to me. The Crystal Point is another piece made with my mother’s ashes. 

SLA has since grown into my full-time job.  I work approximately 35 hours a week and am the sole designer and creator of the jewelry.  In May of 2016, I hired my first part-time assistant, Beth, who is both my personal friend and the best employee I could ask for.  Beth is very much an integral part of Sacred Legacy Arts and she is just as much a face of the brand as I am.  To me, she is much more a partner in SLA than an “employee.”  She handles all of our social media and email communications and is responsible for checking in customer’s inclusions for processing and packaging completed jewelry for shipping.  Beth has had her own profound experiences in motherhood from exclusively pumping for her first baby and being a milk donor (she donated approximately 40 gallons of her breastmilk to babies who needed it!)  to then going on to having a second child who she was able to nurse for over a year and counting. (She is a warrior mama, I tell you!)

Sacred Legacy Arts has grown very quickly into being one of the largest DNA keepsake design companies in the world.  We’re very blessed to have an international reach and to create some of the highest volumes of keepsakes seen worldwide.  Before becoming a full time jewelry designer, I had actually been a social worker previously for six years.  Community development and “doing work that matters,” is critically important to my values.

When Sacred Legacy Arts shifted from being just a “hobby,” to my “vocation,” I vowed that I would found a company committed to making a difference in the world.  We’re involved in multiple projects in an attempt to “give back,” and be mutually supportive to our local and global community.  Ten percent of every sale through SLA goes to a local maternity home for expecting mothers.  This maternity home is an empowerment center who, while giving these women a place to stay, equips them with the education and resources they need to reach self-sufficiency through stable housing, education, and employment.  We’re very proud to be a regular supporter of their mission.  We also strive to partner with as many small businesses as possible for our jewelry supply.  Well over half of our metal jewelry settings come from other small businesses like us versus large wholesale corporations and many of these small business metalsmiths have their own philanthropic endeavors that we are able to help sustain by purchasing from their shops.  For example, many of the copper pieces we’ve featured have come from a women’s empowerment workshop in a Mexican village that teaches vocational skills to the women in the village along with educational and life skill opportunities that help lift these women out of poverty and into self-sufficiency in a dignified, empowering way.  We’re always looking for these kinds of connections to keep the ripple effect going.

Sacred Legacy Arts is also well known for our design collaborations with other artists.  One of the best ways we are able to offer worldwide exclusive, unique designs to our customers is through collaborating and using the artistic vision of other jewelry designers in other material mediums.  Some examples of this include our exclusive tree of life wire wrapped design from Maid in the Woods and our hand casted solid gold ring from Anueva Jewelry or our DNA meditation mala in partnership with Blue Moon Holistics.  Not only does this give us a very unique edge to our design collection, but it helps other small businesses just like us to broaden their reach and influence to our customer base as well as theirs.

One of the biggest lessons I have learned in my life, but especially in motherhood, is to just “let it be,” and to let go of your expectations.  So many times in life, without even realizing it, we gather all of these expectations.  What our children will act like, the kind of support we’ll receive from a partner, how you’ll behave and interact as a mother, what you’ll accomplish, what your relationship with your children will look like…. All of these things are shaped from our life experiences of what our family life was like, what we witnessed within our community, and what we’ve decided we want to repeat or avoid.  But when reality doesn’t line up with our expectations (as it often doesn’t), it can be so hard to face that disappointment.  We get clouded with self-doubt, with comparison, with jealousy or feelings of failure — even resentment.  All of these things hold us back from being able to grow and develop within the actual circumstances that we find ourselves in.  But when we release these expectations from our heart, it frees up the space we need to blossom into who we are within the life that we are living and to see the beauty in what is versus what we thought it would be.  My advice to all of you is to release those expectations, breathe, and just let it be.

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Kelly (on right) and her assistant Beth of Sacred Legacy Arts 

You must check out more of Sacred Legacy Arts:

Figure 8 Maternity

MOM BOSS MONDAY

Happy Monday all! I had to take a little blog break so I wouldn’t miss out on my baby boy. He has definitely been keeping me super busy and I am learning how to live without sleep! I’m breastfeeding my bub exclusively and am always on the lookout for nursing wear that isn’t lame. Honestly, Figure 8 Maternity has some of the best options out there. They carry the cutest range and the quality of their pieces are legit. You can even find items for your little bub, if you haven’t yet, you should definitely check them out. Not only do they have great products but the owners Stephanie and Ying are the sweetest! These 2 have been friends or over 20 years! These Mom Bosses have been kind enough to share their story about how Figure 8 Maternity started. Give them some love and check out their links below.

This week’s Mom Boss is actually a duo, Stephanie and Ying. Here is an excerpt from Figure 8 Maternity.  

Figure 8 was founded in 2005 by Ying and her husband, Min, after discovering there was a need for stylish maternity and nursing clothing and accessories for Moms-to-Be that was easily accessible and provided the best customer service.  Stephanie, Ying’s long time family friend and neighbor,  joined the couple in 2009, and learned as much as she could about being a mother, before actually becoming one.  She is still trying to figure it all out.  Inspired by our own pregnancy and breastfeeding journeys, Figure 8 revolves around this fashion sense- Feel Good, Look Good.  Our collection is inspired by our own experiences as moms and while we look to top designers around the world, we’re also incredibly selective.  We try on every piece of clothing to make sure it looks, feels and “works” properly.   We’re all about bringing you the uncompromising style, quality, comfort and service you crave.

Meet Stephanie:

  1. Mom of Two:  Andrew  4 (nursed for 13 months), Ce-Ce 19 months (nursed for 15 months)
  2. Grew up in NJ across the street from Ying and now lives in CT.
  3. Favorite Time of Day:  Snuggled in Bed reading books together.
  4. How do I get it done…I don’t, the lists keeps growing : ).
  5. Tip:  Let your family and friends help you.  
  6. Favorite Product:  Dote Giselle Elastic Waist Nursing Dress.  I was tired of wearing maternity dresses and loved that this dress was so easy to nurse in and so discreet. I wore it with my first and even more with my daughter.  I was able to nurse Ce-Ce anywhere and still was able to take Andrew to all of his activities and no one knew what I was doing.  https://www.figure8maternity.com/item/1474401

Meet Ying:

  1. Mom of Two:  Kaelin 9 (nursed for 2 yrs), Justin 5 (nursed for 3+yrs!)
  2. Grew up in NJ across the street from Stephanie, and now lives in Singapore.
  3. Favorite Time of Day:  Anytime it’s quiet.
  4. I love what I do and the best part is that I get to work with friends and family.
  5. Tip:  They are little for just a season.  You gain many moments when you don’t lose sight of that.
  6. Favorite product: Baju Mama Audrey Boatneck Nursing Top.  Simple, chic and absolutely comfortable – this is the reliable favorite that keeps up with all my daily demands.  I remember walking around the supermarket somehow navigating the cart and nursing Justin at once, and nobody had a clue! Here is a link to all the color options: https://www.figure8maternity.com/product/15101

Check out Figure 8 Maternity’s Social Media and Website 

https://www.instagram.com/figure8maternity/

https://www.facebook.com/Figure8Maternity/?fref=ts

https://www.facebook.com/Figure8Maternity/?fref=ts

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Stephanie and Ying of Figure 8 Maternity

 

 

Breastfeeding On the Go & Bamboobies Giveaway!

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Being a new mom that exclusively breastfeeds I am learning that it can be a real pain in the ass, especially when you are on the go. You can have the most functional top or outfit, but if you didn’t prepare and put on the right nursing bra, forget about it. It’s a hassle and a milky mess! Well, for me anyway. Now that I am regaining brain cells, getting an additional hour of sleep per day, and feeling confident enough to have a conversation, I won’t pass up the opportunity to get some fresh air. It’s summer and I refuse to stay in! When I have the opportunity to get out of the house, I jump on it! So this means no planning… grab that diaper bag hoping that it has enough diapers and bail!

Let’s talk about breastfeeding in public.  Everyone has their two cents about it. While I believe it should be normalized, it can still be a little intimidating and takes some getting used to. I am still getting the feel as to when I need full coverage or when I am comfortable enough to just go for it and feed my lil’ guy out in the open. Bamboobies makes a simple, chic shawl that is also a nursing cover, and I always have with me. I can literally breastfeed in line at Starbucks with this thing on. If you haven’t invested in one yet, you can get your’s here.

I don’t know about you ladies out there,  but OMG I am producing like a machine! This means LEAKAGE, and lots of pads = lots of trash. I LOVE Bamboobies super absorbent, reusable, and eco-friendly nursing pads. They are extra soft, come in cute colors and heart shapes, and you can get a multipack for light or heavy leakage.

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I keep hearing painful stories about cracked nipples, making the experience that much more of a challenge. My method of intervention is Bamboobies Organic Nipple Balm.  All you Mommies out there working your tails off to feed these growing babies, if you are suffering, this is the stuff you are looking for. What I like about this product is that it is all organic, pesticide free, and non-toxic, making it safe for you and your baby.

Breastfeeding is such a beautiful and natural experience, but not all of us have it easy. All of the challenges can make it rather discouraging. It’s nice to know there are products available to us that assist through the process or prevent issues early on. Bamboobies has a selection of awesome breastfeeding products that you can browse here.

I’ve teamed up with Bamboobies and they are giving away all 3 of the products I’ve reviewed in this post! Yep, the Nursing shawl, the Multipack Nursing Pads, and the Organic Nipple Balm! Just head over to my IG account @livewellmama for details on how to enter. Get a head start here and leave a comment as part of your entry!

*This blog post was sponsored by Bamboobies.

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY Ends 7/10/16 at 11:59:59 p.m. PT. Open to legal residents of the US/CAN who are 18+ years of age. Winner will be announced on 7/11/16.

My 4th Trimester

 

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Taken 3 days before I gave birth…172 lbs

Ahhh, the 4th trimester. Why the hell was I not told about the 4th trimester? I blame every one of you powerful Moms out there! You run around with your Starbucks, cute outfits on, just going about your business with your super chill baby! You had me fooled, thinking it was easy to be a Pro Mom on the go. This is a compliment by the way. You amazing Moms do it so well that I had no idea what was coming. I have several friends that are fantastic mothers, but none of them told me that I was about to be on serious lactose lockdown. Please don’t take me wrong, I’m not complaining… Ok, maybe just a little bit.  But I’m telling you, it’s a wonderful thing to be able to complain about! Being a full time breastfeeding mother is NO JOKE. It’s making pregnancy and labor seem like a freaking breeze at this point. Don’t even get me started on the hormones, on top of the lack of sleep. And I mean LACK OF SLEEP! And just hoping to see sunlight once again. What a  crazy ride. Now I know exactly what others meant when they said,”You will never be ready.”  For someone that likes to plan ahead and be in control, this can be very taxing and discouraging, and very stressful. I am so thankful that my husband is 100% on my team and we are finally starting to figure it out. So all you lovely pregos that are just behind me on this journey, my advice to you is team up with your hubby and/or family, and team up hard.

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Daddies are so important and so capable, so let them do their part.

My sweet boy is 3 weeks old today and  I’m having a hard time accepting that it’s already been that long. I guess you lose track when you are a milk producing zombie. I’m learning to adjust and it’s getting better. Actually, I can’t tell if I’m getting better at this mom gig, or if the coffee is getting stronger, or if I’m just getting used to not sleeping like a normal human anymore. Whatever it is, I know now why Moms don’t focus on the struggles of the 4th trimester or motherhood for that matter, and why the challenges are kept secret. It’s because no matter what hell you are going through, this little human you created makes a small sound that sends love throughout your whole body and all of a sudden sleep is no longer a factor. Nothing matters but the well being of your precious baby.  Okay…I get it now.

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This is why humans keep having children.

Can we just talk about how REMARKABLE the female body is? I mean seriously? I carried a human for 9 months, birthed an 8.5 lb baby and now I am producing enough milk to provide my child with all the nutrients he needs to grow? I’m waiting to discover what magical thing I’m capable of performing next! Let’s see, maybe regaining a healthy body? In the photo below you can see that I lost 14 lbs nine days after birth, 8.5 of it being baby Q. I will be honest with you. I have not been eating the way I would prefer, but I am not beating myself up about it because I am going to get back on track, and I was good my whole pregnancy damn it! In just 3 more weeks I should be able to pick up surfing again and I have already started making healthier meals at home. Well ok, 2 meals, I’ve made 2.  But you’ve got to start somewhere. I hope you stick with me and hold me accountable for continuing my healthy lifestyle. This time around as a Mom. My goal is not to reach a specific weight, (I’m actually not even allowed to have a scale in the house and I like this rule) but my goal is to maintain my health, energy level, be strong, and be happy. The scale and it’s numbers won’t give me any of these results

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Taken 9 days postpartum…158 lbs.

I think the most challenging part of the 4th trimester for me is being okay with resting. I love to get things done, love being active, and I’m a multitasking queen. So when I am told that I am to just rest and be on call for this amazing little baby, I feel anxious. It took me a few weeks, but I’m finally getting the hang of it. It’s okay to rest, and it’s actually necessary. I am no good to anyone if I do not recover well and if I am not happy due to lack of self-care. For all you moms-to-be, hang in there. You WILL cry, you WILL get frustrated, but you WILL fall in love so deeply that you WILL do GREAT.  I would love to hear about your experiences, and please leave me some tips!