Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Balancing Act

There is SO much good.

But there is also the HARDEST of struggles.

I used to wonder why some mothers (many mothers) take it upon themselves to list all the trials they have, every lost hour of sleep, every unpleasant bodily function, every sacrificed luxury. And now I don't fault them, because, WOW, half the time their complaining doesn't even do it justice.

But maybe it is for fear of sounding cheesy, but when I step outside of social media (where motherhood often looks glamorous and perfect), the mothers I talk to avoid the joyful stories. They seem to bond in the struggles and take satisfaction in having a life that is "so hard."

But I don't think we're doing this to be busy. Or to be tired. Or to be miserable.

And so I find that talking about motherhood is almost as difficult a balancing act as the thing itself. Because my goodness, spit up stains on shirts you love and didn't wash soon enough are not glamorous. Neither is feeling great about yourself because you actually remembered to wash your face and brush your teeth before noon.

But that baby, those chubby leg rolls and those wide blue eyes, those arms that start to learn to wrap around you when you pick him up, those tiny giggles that can bring a smile to your face faster than anything else, it is a fulfillment and a happiness I hadn't know before.

And so its hard. When people ask how I'm doing I'm tempted to remind them that because his teeth are coming in I haven't gotten more than three consecutive hours of sleep in days. I'm tempted to respond to every "you look great" with, "well, I'm still 8 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight." I'm tempted to reduce this joyous job to the mundane. I'm tempted to ask for their sympathy because if the pre-baby me knew this is what it was like, I would have given it to every mother, in wide-eyed wonder at their superhuman powers.

But I try to resist the temptation.

Partially, because I want people to want to have babies. Because babies being wanted is important. And because I want people to be happy and this baby thing is the best at that. It is also good for the work ethic, the muscles, and the patience. But more than I thought (and more than I think sometimes when Lincoln is fussing and winning the battle against the naps), this motherhood business is good for the soul.

Linen skirt // gingham top: GAP (old) // watch  // heels: Banana Republic (old) 

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Baby Update + His First Pair of Shoes

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Stride Rite for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine, just like always. It is always fun to partner with brands I've loved since I was a kid...especially when it involves tiny shoes ;) 

This little man has decided its time for his top teeth to start coming in and I feel like I need a second pair of hands around here all the time. I also think he's figured out that laughing is almost as good a way to get attention as crying because sometimes when he's laying on the floor and I've gotten distracted, he'll just start giggling and look at me. If I start to look away, he giggles again. He may be as smart as he is cute. Hashtag biased mother.

Anyway, fun story:

Growing up in Tokyo, my family spent two months each summer visiting relatives in the States. It meant lots of fun with the cousins, plenty of time at the cabin in southern Utah (along Texas and New Hampshire), and epic back-to-school shopping because it was so much more expensive if we needed to get more things in Tokyo throughout the year. In addition to getting a new wardrobe, part of the ritual was heading to Stride Rite. Each of us got two pairs of school shoes (one in our size, and one in half a size up because they needed to last us all year long), and a pair of church shoes. I remember the shoe shopping just fine, but what I can't figure out is how my mom got ALL of that back to Japan.

I also remember my mom insisting on that shoe store or something because they needed to last us all year long. So, I thought it fitting that Lincoln's first pair of shoes is from Stride Rite's new Surprize line for Target (a childhood staple + a current shopping go-to).

^when I first put these on him he was SO curious, as if to say "new toys on my feet, mom?"
^we can pretend he was excited to open a box of shoes...and not just to be playing with a box...

^I died over these little winter boots when I saw them at Target I got them a bit bigger and can't wait for him to wear them just as he starts walking sometime next winter
^not that he needs them right now, but those rubber toes would be awesome for running + playing and not wearing out (they also have flexible outsoles which let your kids have a natural step as they learn to walk).

^he also just decided he liked grass while I was snapping these pictures...
^a boy's first bite of grass documented :D
Surprize for girls   Surprize for boys
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Snaps of Findlay

Just a few quick snaps from a family stroll downtown before my mom and sister left. I do love how visitors help you make the most of where you live, even if its always a bit harder when they leave. Growing up in Tokyo (before spending my teenage years in New Hampshire) we lived thousands and thousands of miles from the nearest family members and I never anticipated living close to family would be a priority for me. But now I'm just counting down the months (years) before these family walks are something I can take for granted.

^Main street has some of the neatest houses. Maddie and I think we'll move into this one.

^or how cool is this? I love the lined walk and that far upper balcony

^so it was a bit passed his bedtime...we're working on getting him back on a schedule because things the past two weeks have been a little bit crazy
^a fountain in your front yard? is this ohio or italy?

^the courthouse will forever be my favorite building...and that sky! 

Have a wonderful day! 

I'm wearing this shirt from Sheinside on sale for less than $20 right now (not a huge fan of how high the side slit goes but I've worn it at least twice a week all summer anyway because it goes with everything), these linen joggers (favorite pants this summer - you can get select sizes on big sale here), and these floral slip-ons. Ben's joggers are thanks to aeropostale (50% off right now) and his shoes are sperrys. Lincoln's little striped outfit is on clearance at Target.


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