Daily Mom Essentials & Survival Guide
At over 9 months postpartum, I can finally say I’m settling into the groove of being a mom and getting a routine down. Ayla has a pretty strict daily schedule (if you’re interested in hearing about that, comment and let me know!). This makes it a lot easier to plan my day and get work done! I’ve also learned some really great tips and found a few products that have quickly become mom essentials for me, and they’ve made this whole “mom life” way more manageable!
5 Mom Hacks for Stress Free(ish) Parenting
Get yourself a “mom bag.” Now, I’m not talking about your basic, everyday diaper bag. I have one of these, I’ve been using it since Ayla was born. I’m talking about a “carry all yo shit, carry all yo baby’s shit, carry all yo man’s shit too cause he wont’ carry his own man bag” type of “mom bag.” I didn’t even know I needed this until it was sent to me. I love this one from Mom Kindness and OH MY DOUBLE GOSH, it has literally SAVED my life! This bag is actually three bags in one (a diaper bag insert, a canvas tote bag, and a leather crossbody), and you can wear it THREE DIFFERENT WAYS: as a traditional tote, as a side satchel, and as a backpack. Like, whaaaat??? Can you tell I’m obsessed? Seriously, YOU NEED THIS, even if you’re not a mom! Check out all their fun styles and colors here!
Take some time, every day, to do something for yourself. For me, this means dropping Ayla at daycare for two hours so I can either work out, answer e-mails, or slip into a coma and lounge by the pool. I seriously cannot stress enough how important this is. I was way more stressed before I started taking Ayla to daycare. Now I look forward to that two hours of alone time, and guess what? Ayla loves it too! She gets to play in this crazy bouncy thing that she’s obsessed with, so it’s a win win for the both of us.
Invest in a comfortable and flattering pair of jeans. I’ve written an entire post on my favorite denim jeans for postpartum women that you can check out, but I’ll just say here that finding a comfortable and flattering pair of jeans is a game changer. It can make you feel so much more confident, and that’s worth a lot, am I right?
Find some baby-friendly jewelry. Ayla grabs my necklaces and earrings all the time. I’m always afraid she’s either going to break something, rip my ear open, or swallow something she shouldn’t. One of my insta-friends has a little boutique in SE Portland called Whimsy Wandering and she carries these amazing teething necklaces that I’d been eyeing for forever. She was kind enough to gift one to me and it’s a life saver, Ayla loves it and I don’t have to worry about my nice jewelry getting ruined. Unfortunately you can’t shop her store online, but you can check it out here!
Get comfortable saying “no.” This one is so hard for me. I’m a people pleaser and I hate feeling like I’m disappointing someone. But the reality of becoming a parent is that you really don’t have time to do some of the things you once did (at least not as frequently, anyways). Do I enjoy having to decline offers to happy hour and brunch? Absolutely not. But I have to think about what am I giving up by saying “yes?” That would mean I have to either take Ayla with me (which also means I won’t enjoy the quality time with my friend as much), or I have to leave her at home, which means finding someone to watch her. I also have to find the time to get ready, which usually means either getting up before the crack of dawn, or taking Ayla to daycare for an hour or two so someone else can watch her. Sometimes, it’s just too much and I have to say “no,” and that’s OK. I’m still working on not feeling bad about it, but I definitely think it’s one of the more important mom essentials to have in your pocket.