Raising a baby in Bococa

See? Parenting = easy. (Haa!)
So now I do this thing. When I meet a mom with a little baby in our neighborhood, I ask immediately how she is doing. I'm probably overstepping (which glides so easily into oversharing, probably!) but I feel the need to bring these thirsty moms water. When I was wandering the 'hood like a zombie only a few short months ago, I was dying for a drink of experienced momdom. I really just wanted someone with a slightly older baby to tell me it was going to be okay because anyone who did NOT recently do sleep training or have sore boobs did not qualify.

Anyways, now I just overshare and I take people's email addresses or phone numbers and tell them to call me ANYTIME (no really, anytime) and I also promise that I'm going to send them a list of Things That Will Save Their Lives. So here goes; now I can just send them the link to this blog post. Donezo.

THINGS THAT WILL SAVE YOUR LIFE (when you are raising a little baby in Brooklyn):

  • 61 Local - a bar with lots of room for strollers, a killer ricotta-honey-toast situation, and almost always at least one mom wearing a baby and drinking a hard cider.
  • Vered's music class (so, so, so, so good!)
  • Andrea Syms-Brown- Lactation consultant extraordinaire. 
  • Breast-feeding Support Group at Gumbo- led biweekly by Andrea Syms-Brown; this is where I made so many mom friends. It is an incredible group and a perfect place where your baby can eat, sleep, play, whatEVER while you connect with the other ladies in the circle.
  • The library! I always have books on hold to pick up, which is a great excuse to leave the house.
  • Cobble Hill Park- Also known as the Ted & Honey Park because it's nearby. 
  • PetSmart on Atlantic and Court has a changing station in the women's bathroom! And it is awesome.
  • Cookie's on the Fulton Mall - This is a super-cheap place to buy pacifiers, bottles and general baby supplies. Unlike the little shops on Court Street that are crazy expensive. 
  • Baby swings at Pierrepont Playground and Van Voorhees Park
  • Every park down at Pier 6

When in doubt, send me an email. For real, I am happy to help anyone going through the tough first few months!

P.S. I also have a list of therapists who specialize in Postpartum issues, so definitely drop an email if you'd like that.


On Mother's Day Eve.

This is the first year that I have a child who calls me mom. The past seven months have revealed life to be more complex and more sweet than I ever knew it to be. For that, and for the continuous process of evolving as a mother and a woman, I am very grateful.

But I have mothered before this year. I've comforted and encouraged and listened and guided and smiled and chided and provided for and loved loved loved many people in my life. Maybe you have too. And so tomorrow is a day to appreciate the mothering and nurturing that women do for us when we need it most.

Pinch someone's cheek tomorrow. Hold someone's hand while crossing the street. Bring someone a napkin or a glass of water or their favorite socks when their feet are cold. In doing these things, we're honoring all of our moms in the very best way.


Gone Fishing.

I have wanted to write on this blog over the past month, but the truth is that I have been hanging out in parks instead. You truly don't care that your apartment is only 10 square feet when you can easily put your baby in a stroller and spend the day hopping from park to playground to coffee shop to book store to library to park again.

All of this outdoor time in a city reminds me so much of my time in Paris, when I could literally spend the entire day eating baguettes in a park with whoever was around. I had no other responsibilities, nothing that I needed to be doing in the background of everyday life. 401k accounts and grocery lists for the next week and moving clothes backwards in the closet... none of these background life activities are required when you are living abroad, a year at a time.

So I've been trying to go with the flow of this. (Clearly my memoir of this time will be called Don't Leave the Park on Time So You Can Vacuum.)

We are having a great, great time. I - I- am having a great, great time.


Right now my husband is in DC at a conference where he is having 1,000 ideas per minute and I'm at Starbucks in Yorktown while my mom is hanging out with Noah. The normalcy of this stuns me. When you are in that first period of a baby's life, a period that I lovingly call HOLYSHITWHENDOESTHISKIDGOHOME???, it is literally impossible to imagine that one day you might be allowed to have 1,000 ideas per minute or write a blog post. I am so grateful that we are past the most intense part of that. Most nights I get in bed and can't wait to wake up so that I can drink a cup of coffee and snuggle my son. 

I still have stress dreams, though. Most of these involve tiny, tiny babies who I've forgotten to feed or accidental pregnancies that have us going through the ringer again later this year. The short answer to "do you want a second?" is probably - but not until it sounds like a great idea. Right now we are enjoying the one we have.


And this all brings me to the mantra that Chris and I have agreed on: "Do what works for as long as it works." Right now working 3 days a week is perfection. One day it may not be, but it's not worth spending energy solving problems that don't exist yet. I am in a period of intense non-planning and sometimes it makes me want to breathe into a paper bag for a few hours (because PLANNING! Love it!). But I got to the end of the road with the planning, the perfectionism and the peace-keeping. Now I make the time to sit in the sun and think slow thoughts.

On that note, closing this laptop to drink my chai in the sun. See you back here soon, friends.