No, I’m not pregnant.
I am, however, a big fan of babies. I am completely incapable of resisting their soft tufts of hair, delicious wrist rolls and tiny, bird-like mouths. I’m no fool though. I also remember the long, sleepless nights, desperately trying to translate cries and nipples that felt like they were about to fall off.
New mamahood is the strangest mixture of pure bliss and torture. One minute your heart seems to have expanded into your throat. You are so filled with love and gratitude that you might actually burst. The next minute, you’re almost positive that if you don’t get five minutes of sleep you are going to completely lose your shit.
As I transition into a brand new stage of motherhood—my tween starts middle school in a couple of weeks—I wanted to give a little love to the new moms out there. The mommas who can’t see passed the mountain of dirty diapers to a time when life feels manageable again. Whether that’s you or you have a friend or family member in the throes of new parenthood (or some about to find themselves there), this giveaway is one you don’t want to miss.
Cuddles & Chaos’ ridiculously awesome Big, Fat Baby Giveaway
Before I tell you how you can enter, let’s take a look at the four awesome companies that are making this giveaway happen…
Have you ever read a book that makes you want to go on an adventure? I’m sure you have. Maybe you wanted to hop over to England after reading Harry Potter, wander around Italy after reading Eat, Pray, Love or explore the Pacific Crest Trail after finishing Wild.
But have you ever stopped to think about the idea that children’s books can do the same thing to your kids?
After reading Ladybug Girl (more on that in a second) with my littlest, she suddenly got very into ladybugs. She wanted to go everywhere in her ladybug rain boots—and, sometimes, the matching rain jacket and umbrella (no matter what the weather). She wanted to stomp in the biggest puddles and conquer the world one polka-dotted step at a time.
It got me thinking about other books we’ve read that inspire outdoor adventures…
I’m not good at lying, so I’m not going to pretend here. I am not prepared for the school year to start. I know that a lot of the country is already back in the swing of things, but my girls have another few weeks before the big yellow bus comes rolling down our street. And I’m not so good with the whole preparedness thing (although sometimes I really do try).
That’s sort of my problem: a lack of preparation. I always have good intentions, but my complete and utter lack of preparation sidelines my big plans more often than not. I’m really good at making lists of things to do. But the getting started part? Not so much.
So I’m going to try to be better this year. And I’m going to start with Ellie’s lunchbox.
I can feel my husband’s anxiety rise as the seashells clink into the bucket from their little sandy fingers. The girls’ faces are full of the bright-eyed joy that goes hand-in-hand with discovering treasures. My husband’s face is tight and thin lipped and definitely wondering where the hell are all of these seashells going to end up and how long do I have to wait to throw them out?!
Me? I fall somewhere in between. I’m one part embrace the magic and one part at what point will we tip the scales and become eligible for Hoarders?
My girls like collecting things. Gemstones. Birthday cards. Sticky candy wrappers that are still holding on to the scent of their favorite treat. While I totally understand the desire to hold on to things that make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, I also understand not wanting to live in a house that looks like the local dump.
The attempt at balancing both sides had me scrambling for a way to deal with our current seashell collection ituation. Our house was littered with partially-filled Ziploc bags of seashells waiting to find a home. We could have thrown them all out, but I liked the idea of doing something special with them, in hopes of bringing back a little of that bright-eyed joy whenever my girls see them.
I have been a mess lately. I don’t know which way is up, what time what activity starts, where I put the mail or what the hell I’m supposed to be doing with myself. I realized, by accident, that this was directly related to the fact that I had fallen off the Using My Brand-New Planner bandwagon.
In January I was all hopped up on thoughts of organization and go get ’em inspiration. My new planner was perfect for that. I could keep track of everything meticulously and feel very organized and official. It was great. But the farther we got from the ball dropping on New Years Eve, the more my enthusiasm dwindled. I slowly began using the planner less and I became more and more scattered and unorganized.
Then one day I woke up and had no idea what my goals were any more. I felt so lost and confused and unsure of what to do with any pockets of free time I found. What the hell do you do when you don’t know what it is you’re doing?