Our first day home…the necessities


I’m happy to announce that I had my baby girl over Labor Day weekend. She was a week early but couldn’t have come too soon for me. This being the second child…we thought we had all our bases covered, but you never do. For new moms, I wanted to share what she actually used in the 24 hours from leaving the hospital until this morning. Most of the stuff we had or were given at the shower. The only thing I should have bought was #5 (the Art Baby Cards). Last night, she wanted to stare at the bassinet wall, so I gave her some of Antonio’s flashcards to look at for the meantime. I’m definitely getting her the art cards soon!

I was most surprised that I liked the make and designs of a lot of Carter’s items. The outfit , gloves a and swaddle blanket set…we got at our shower.

For her going home outfit, we made the mistake of originally packing a dressing gown for her then realized that we would have to hike it up to get her in the car seat for the ride home. We had to change it to these pjs with footsies.

When Antonio was born, I drifted towards brands like Aden&Anais, Gerber, Circo & independent companies. This time around I guess, I’ve changed my tune.

We also use the Pampers brand because that’s what the hospital used on her, and we have a ton of them from our diaper shower. When those run out, I might try the Honest diapers.

1) Fresh new baby (Stella born 8.30.14)

2) Life Factory 4oz. glass bottle w/size 1 nipple

3) Carter’s Hot Air Ballon Swaddle blanket set

4) Chicco Car Seat in Aster (Part of our KeyFit 30 Stroller Set)

5) Wee Gallery’s Art Cards for Baby (contrast pictures that cater to baby’s visual development)

6) Pampers Swaddlers (size NB)

7) Fisher Price Neutral Bassinet (her sleeping quarters for the next couple of months)

8) Carter’s White Gloves (to prevent scratching)

9) Carter’s Crab Print Sleep ‘n’ Play (size Newborn)


Mom Judging takes a turn…when a McDonald’s Mom gets fired over her parenting decision

web-judging-momsEarlier in the week, I read this story of the McDonald’s mom, Debra Harrell, who was arrested for letting her 9-year old daughter play alone at the playground while she worked her shifts. Most recently, Harrell was fired from her job at McDonalds, and her child was taken into state custody. Now out on bond, Harrell has been reunited with her daughter while the case heads to court.

Many issues come into play with this story…lack of sufficient wages, low-income childcare options, parenting choices and mom judging. Did the woman who called the cops on Harrell have the right to report the unattended child or was she simply teaching another mom a lesson by mom judging? Now, I’ve been guilty of my fair share of mom judging…we all kind of do it…both knowingly and unknowingly. I’ve been told to bud out of the “to spank or not to spank” debate on occasion, but having someone arrested and having their child taken away from their custody is not the answer. How many moms can say that they were 100% supervised while playing outside as children? When did this become a crime? Or will it become a crime because of this case?

At the very least, this case brings McDonalds wages to the forefront. I’m curious to see where this case is headed…I’m on Team Harrell. Let’s hope everyone keeps the 9-year old in mind. What are your thoughts?

Cartoon courtesy of www.thatsmyapple.com

Easter Weekend…Have a Good One!


Photo copyright of Number 9 Photography

I  Photo copyright of Number 9 Photography

Easter weekend is finally here, and I’m pretty excited to see this little guy crack his first Easter eggs (cascarones)…and run around and such. I didn’t realize how much I missed the real excitement of Easter until I became a mom. Now, I understand how fun it was for my mom to dress us up, build Easter baskets, take bunny photos and dye eggs.

I took this photo last year right before Antonio’s first birthday, so this year will be the first Easter where he understands the holiday. I’ve got a shopping bag full of Easter basket bits to put together. We’ll be coloring the rest of the eggs tonight, and on Sunday, we’ll be visiting my sister for her Easter sacraments ceremony. I’ll say that Antonio has a full Easter experience ahead of him. Happy Easter, everyone…here’s hoping there’s a chocolate bunny in your future!

Finding time with the second pregnancy


When I first started the idea of a baby blog, it was during a 4am feeding, and Antonio was just 3 months old.

I would learn things about other moms and newborns through blogs mostly on my iPad while Antonio slept in my arms. Things were nice and calm…and easy.

Here we are almost two years later planning Antonio’s second birthday, and I’m 19 weeks pregnant with our second child. Time has flown by, but mostly it’s that quiet time that’s gone away.

I don’t have a pregnancy book that I fill in every week with my thoughts and cravings. I’m not taking monthly bump snapshots, and I have yet to make it to the maternity store.

I feel like this second baby is already falling victim to his/her birth order. Antonio is becoming a little boy just as this new person is becoming our next baby. I wish I had more time to prepare and plan, but that’s just not in the cards.

With first trimester morning sickness and less free time to write, I barely think about posts…much less have desktop time to craft them.

For now, I’m going to try mobile posting. If this new baby is going to move around at 4am…then maybe that’s the magic hour, and my phone will have to be my new pen.

Natural Nursery with homemade Texas flair

As a wedding photographer, one of the things I get to do is follow couples as they start their families.  It’s always exciting to hear that the couple has a new little person in their life.  Part of a newborn … Continue reading

Social Media and a Parent’s Death


Last month, I experienced the most heart-breaking moment of my life…my mom died. I was with her from her last conversation to her last breath.

A post on Bluebird Kisses prompted me to finally post about it, since the topic of social media and death has started a debate on ‘sharing’ too much.

The man behind the controversy is Scott Simon, a NPR radio personality, who started tweeting from his mother’s hospital bedside. His tweets shared intimate moments of cradling his mother, holding her hand, her heart rate dropping and when she died. Just reading the few comments below you can see the tug of war between support and criticism.


During my mother’s last days, I wrestled with using the word “death” in a tweet or status update. I was feeling so many emotions that I felt were insensitive to share. I didn’t want to invite sympathy or distraction, so i stayed away from posting. That being said, I appreciated Simon’s posts.

Simon gave a voice to the experience that I didn’t want to share. I didn’t want to break people’s hearts by telling my story, especially those who have not lost a parent. Simon made me feel connected and calm, because I knew he shared my pain.

In the days following my mother’s death, my family found comfort in memorial Facebook posts friends and family put in their status updates. My mother didn’t want a funeral, and she chose to be cremated, so in a way, online posts served the purpose of a funeral and obituary. It never even occurred to us to place an obit in her hometown newspaper.

We filtered through family photos, and posted them onto her Facebook page for people to download as keepsakes. Having her life in pictures helped me grieve and relatives were grateful to have photos with her tagged to their profile.

In the next few months, we’ll have to cancel her email and Facebook account, but for now, it’s nice to see her face online everyday. It’s like a bit of her is still here. It’s not insulting or disgraceful to share if sharing helps you cope.

So I say, Simon, handle your grief for you, and let others have their opinions for themselves. Something about being able to share this experience makes it real. I’m glad that Simon’s sharing prompted me to post.

Mother’s Day: What I Really Want


I’ve been a mother for exactly one year. Last year, I had this new baby and this new title…Mom. This year, I’ve had 12 months to figure out what that title means. It means becoming a cook, a housekeeper, a teacher, a playmate, a coach, a cuddler, a tickler, a sanitation worker, an encourager and so on.

With my days full, the best part of my day is the moment my little roommate is sound asleep, because I know that it’s time for me to do what ever I want. I can take a long shower, catch up on my Netflix, start a good book, chat with my husband, waste time on Facebook or fall asleep playing on my iPad. The point is that I can do whatever I want, and what’s more of a Mother’s Day gift than the gift of time. Time to do what I want to do, not what I have to do.

When Sunday comes, I still want to get up, put on a nice dress and go out for a Mother’s Day lunch with my family. After all, they are the reason I’m this new person now. It’s just nice to know that my husband will be on diaper duty, feeding duty, bathing duty and bed time…if only for the day. I’ll just take the play-time on Sunday.

Here’s a cheer to all the ladies who take on the job of motherhood. I wish someone would have told me sooner that raising a little person is just as rewarding as any work merit can ever be. 🙂

How will you be spending your holiday?

While You Were Out Drinking


Just after my son was born, I former coworker sent me this onesie. We used to sell it at the shop we worked at, and when I first opened it, I laughed. Shortly, thereafter, I cringed. How in the world could I let my son wear this without looking like a liar.

To turn this dilemma around, I decided to use it as a motivator. So while everyone was out drinking for St. Patrick’s Day, I started drinking water. I decided that I will stop eating things that I would never put in my baby’s mouth – caffeine, artificial sweeteners, fried foods, sugars, salt, etc. I’m calling it the “Antonio Diet”.

I promised myself that I would lose the rest of the baby weight 15lbs by his first birthday. So I’m on a 6 week journey to get healthy and fit. The other thing I won’t do is let the scale intimidate me, so no weighing in until April 30th. Wish me luck!