Meet Amber – wife, mama to 2 kiddos, and co-owner of Dulcet Creative, a Southern California-based creative agency. When she’s not at home with her family renovating their little fixer upper, you’ll probably find her traveling, instagramming (we’re obsessed with her account!), and/or developing creative gatherings for other talented ladies. Oh, and did we mention that while doing the bazillion things she does on the reg, she also always manages to look incredibly stylish, too?
“There’s nothing cooler than a graphic tee.”
Munster Ride the Bowl Tee
“Every little guy needs a good trucker hat.”
Tiny Whales Local Trucker Hat
“I’m loving this shirt with cool cutoffs.”
APPAMAN Dream Blue Harvey Shirt
“These look so cute with a chambray top.”
APPAMAN Golden Brown Punk Shorts
“Perfect to rock on those brisk summer nights.”
Sol Angeles Black Waves Jogger Pant
“This is the softest tee ever! I love it.”
Chaser Old Soul Muscle Tee
“The epitome of boho beautiful. I’m obsessed!”
Velveteen Sienna Gold Skirt
“These pants look perfect with a basic tee.”
Pink Chicken Harper Pant
“Great for pool time or party time!”
Hatched Baby Navajo Blue Kimono
“A classic stripe tee looks good with everything.”
Mini Rodini Navy Stripe Rib Wing Tee
“This embroidered jean romper is just too much.”
Rock Your Baby Kitty Ruffle Romper
“A white flowy dress is a summer staple in my book.”
Velveteen Frankie Ivory Dress
“Love this skirt with the Navy Stripe Wing Tee!”
Velveteen Eloise Floral Gauze Skirt
“The coolest way to keepthose rays at bay.”
APPAMAN Casey Fedora
Shop Amber's Collection for the Hatched pieces Amber’s picking up for summer.
In honor of Father’s Day, we’re dedicating this month’s Mom Crush Monday to a well-deserving dad instead (aka our Man Crush Monday!). And while we’re super-lucky to know some pretty rad dads, we reached out to one of our nearest and dearest friends, Pete Suprenant, founder of one of the coolest menswear stores in the game, North Menswear.
We chatted with Pete about everything from balancing work with fatherhood to how he stays inspired. Read our interview with Pete below.
How do you balance working with being a dad?
You'll probably think I'm crazy, but a large reason I started my own business was so I could be more present as a father. I'm my own boss. No 9-5. I can be at home when needed. However that's not to say being a small business owner has its challenges when it comes to taking time off.
Favorite pieces from North for Father's Day?
Richer Poorer 2 Pack Tees
Freenote Aster Shirt
SeaVees Legend Sneaker
Tell us about the idea behind North.
I wanted to create a timeless capsule of menswear rooted in quality and authenticity. A place where fast fashion had no place and where people felt comfortable to come shop, share stories and be inspired.
Speaking of inspiration, how do you stay inspired?
I find inspiration in all sorts of places. The outdoors, the ocean, a movie, a painting, a book…but most of my inspiration for the store and clothes stems from style icons like Paul Newman.
What do you enjoy doing most with your little ones?
Being outside with them whether at the beach or on a walk, because being out in nature seems to bring out the best in all of us.
What's your idea of an amazing day off?
A breakfast out followed by a beach day with the fam.
How would you describe your "dad style"?
How do you choose the lines at North?
Quality is first and foremost. It has to be made well and made ethically. I also try to source things locally. The majority of the product is made in Los Angeles. Then I look at the styling. It has to be "timeless" and never overdone. Simplicity is the higher form of elegance in my opinion... I think Tom ford might have said that...
What are some struggles you've faced as a business owner?
The ebb and flow. Sometimes you're high and sometimes you’re low. I've learned to not overthink or over analyze. Trying to predict fickle consumer trends can get maddening.
Proudest moment so far as a business owner?
The shop was featured a few times in Men's File Magazine which is my favorite men’s magazine. That made me feel like we finally made it.
What do you love to do in your free time?
Be with my kids and catch a surf when they're napping.
Any advice for budding entrepreneurs?
Chase your dream and don't stop until you achieve it!
What's your favorite thing about being a dad?
The absolute unconditional love! And lots and lots of hugs and laughter!
Favorite dad moments?
How do I pick!? Every day there's a new one. My boys fill my life with favorite moments!
Looking for something special for dad? Browse North’s laid-back collection here.
For this week’s Mom Crush Monday, we chatted with Erika Altes, the gal behind one of our favorite blogs, Whiskey & Lace. Erika is not only a blogger and mama to Austin, but she’s also the Northern California Sales Rep for Roxy.
How do you balance running a blog, working full-time, and being a wife and mom?
It's not always easy, but I believe a part of me sort of enjoys the craziness in having to balance a lot of things. However, I must say it takes a village! On any given day, my front door may as well be revolving. I have so many great people in my life that help with Austin and with my job. I just couldn't do it without them. Someone once told me to "be present wherever you are,” and I think of that statement every single day. If I am working on Roxy or the Blog I am 100% focused on that and when it comes time to be a mom/wife, I set the work aside and focus on them. It's not always easy but I try and remind myself it's important to give all of you to wherever you are in that given moment and it seems to work. I am not going to lie, though, a nice glass of champagne also helps me get through the craziness.
What prompted you to start a blog?
I have worked in the fashion industry for almost 11 years now, and I have always loved tapping into my creative side. I wanted to start a blog to not only share my creative ideas, but to show women that you can be a mom, have a job, and still be fashionable all at the same time! It's only been a short time since I started the blog, and I have to say, it has quickly become my passion. I wake up excited to come up with new ideas to share. The comments and emails I get from my readers make it all worthwhile.
What do you love most about being a mom?
Hands down, the unconditional love. I never thought a love like this could exist. The hugs, kisses, and laughter are pretty awesome too.
How do you relax?
Anyone that knows me knows that relaxation is not an easy thing for me to do. However, I do find myself most relaxed when I’m sitting with family listening to music – with a glass of champagne in hand, of course!
Champagne in the prettiest glass I can find.
Favorite children’s brands?
I am obsessed with Hatched Baby of course, but a few of my other favorites are Zara, Old Navy, Target, and Gap Kids.
Advice for moms trying to juggle it all?
Know you are doing the best you can and if you need a break, take one. Don't forget to take care of yourself as well.
Favorite local vacation spot?
Solage in Calistoga! My husband Mark and I are fortunate enough to live in the wine country and this resort is top notch! If you are headed to Napa, you must at least stop here and have a cocktail - it's gorgeous!
What do you love to do most with Austin?
Mark and I both LOVE to take Austin out on our beach cruisers. When the weather is nice, we try and take him out each evening after dinner. His face lights up and he literally cries when we turn the corner on our street to head back home. He never wants it end!
Is there anything you wish you knew before becoming a mama?
I wish I knew not to take sleep for granted because I most certainly did prior to being a mom.
Meet Staci – fashion and beauty writer, wife, and new mama to Delilah Mia. We sat down with Staci to chat about everything from life as a new mom, to getting in shape after baby, to managing work and mommy duties.
Read on to get to know her better.
Congrats on being a new mama! How does it feel?
Crazy! But…it’s getting a lot more normal. The first few days were hectic – my husband and I had never really cared for a newborn, and everything we learned in our baby classes kind of went out the window once she popped out. So far, it’s been pretty much trial and error. We learn something new about her everyday, and I feel like it’s been the same for her. Things are finally getting easier since we started to get her on a schedule. Now that we have a schedule, we’ve been able to make some time for the two of us (and a glass of wine!) at the end of the night before bed.
What was the most challenging part of your pregnancy?
Oh, that’s easy: at around 32 weeks, I fell down the stairs at our friends’ house and broke my ankle. It was the most depressing news ever because I was already starting to feel that end-of-pregnancy discomfort, and the break not only made that worse, but it also kept me from working out which was very important to me throughout those 9 months. Oh, and sushi. I love sushi, so it was really hard to keep away from it! My husband actually brought me sushi from my fave local spot the night I delivered Delilah.
Any tips on getting back in shape after a baby?
Exercising has always been top priority of mine. I made it a point to do something active every day while I was pregnant. Whether it was Barre, classical Pilates, or just walking my dog, I made sure to get out and do something for at least 30 minutes a day. While I wasn’t always breaking a sweat, it made me feel good inside and out knowing that I was doing something good for my body and soul. After Delilah was born, I immediately signed up for Pilates Platinum, which is the most hardcore Pilates class in LA. It’s the key to changing your body fast, and I’ve already seen results.
Go-to travel spots?
My husband and I LOVE Cabo. It’s so close, easy, and we’re absolutely obsessed with the Caesar salad at The Office (we’ve legit tried to recreate it at home). Ojai and Palm Springs are up next. We have a really close-knit group of friends, and our Palm Springs trips have become pretty legendary. I can’t wait for Delilah to experience these things with us.
How has your style changed since becoming a mom?
My style’s always been pretty low-maintenance, but since becoming a mom, I’ve gotten even more lax. These days, I pretty much live in Lululemon, sweats, and tees. Now when I have a reason to get dressed up, I go all out.
Favorite baby brands?
Hatched Baby, Gap Baby, H&M, Firefly in Venice, and Oeuf.
How are you balancing mommyhood with your career as a freelance writer?
To be honest, it hasn’t been easy. Since having Delilah, I have an all new appreciation for stay-at-home and working moms. Being a mom is literally a fulltime job, and I never truly understood that when other women told me it would be. I’m really lucky to have my parents and in-laws close by, because my mom and mother-in-law each watch the baby one day a week. It gives me time to work, run errands, and get the occasional mani/pedi. And when that’s not enough, I’ll work on projects at night when my husband gets home, or on the weekends when I have his help. It takes a lot of strategic planning, though, haha.
What are you most excited about as a new mom?
Delilah’s changing every day, and it’s amazing to watch these tiny (but still amazing) milestones happen right before my eyes. My heart feels so happy and full as I watch her grow, and knowing that it’s totally up to us to nurture and love her makes life that much better. There are so many things I can’t wait to do – Disneyland, holidays, manicures and pedicures, her first hair cut, first walk, first words…the list goes on and on. Right now, I’m just taking it day by day and soaking in every precious moment.
For this week’s Mom Crush Monday, we chatted with Maritza Bernard of Milkshop. A personal shopping and wardrobe styling agency, Milkshop helps women everywhere create their own style regardless of their weight, age, or income. Read on to learn more about how Maritza stays inspired while also balancing mommyhood.
Can you tell us a little about Milkshop?
Milkshop is a personal shopping and wardrobe styling company that specializes in closet detoxes. Our goal is to help our clients look and feel fantastic in what they are wearing.
How did it launch?
Milkshop launched in August 2012 when I was asked by an acquaintance if I would do some personal shopping for her. I had such a great time doing it and loved the fact that I was able to run my household and do all my mom stuff at the same time. It was then that I decided to make it a full time job.
What inspires you?
Whether it’s people, colors, fabrics, etc, I constantly find inspiration around me. I don’t consider myself trendy, and try to really listen to what my clients needs are before I determine the “look” or “style” that will work for their everyday life.
What are some hardships you've faced so far?
Trying to juggle it all without getting stressed out! Also, learning how to market myself has been hard. I’m terrible at it and know I need to invest in help.
How do you balance being a mom and owning your own business?
It’s definitely a struggle. When my kids and hubby are happy, I go to bed feeling like I’ve got my shit together. Then, there are days when absolutely nothing gets done. It can go from one extreme to the other, which can be hard. With that said, I find I am most successful when I wake up before my kids, take a moment to pray and write everything down that I need or want to accomplish and go. Having that moment to myself is key and seeing my to-do list on paper helps me to not get overwhelmed. Plus, I love to check things off the list – it makes me feel fantastic.
Proudest moment so far?
Relocating from New York to California and being able to grow my business. My clients are amazing and their referrals help me continue to do what I love.
What's your favorite part about owning your own business?
My favorite part is being able to make my own schedule. I love that I can volunteer in my kids classes and then head off to detox a clients closet. It’s important for me to still be there as much as I can for my kids and husband.
Any advice for other moms wanting to start their own biz?
My advice is just to START. The hardest part of starting your own business is the fear that holds you back. It’s important to get out there and talk to other moms who are doing something you want to be doing – you’ll be amazed by the kindness and support you’ll encounter. Don’t compare yourself to others, it’s your own journey so do it your way!
For this month’s Mom Crush Monday, we had the pleasure of chatting with Melissa Brown, an infant sleep guru with some seriously amazing tricks up her sleeve. Thanks to years of professional study and personal experience, this inspiring mama of five has made it her mission to help other families find peace and joy in a usually chaotic time. Intrigued? Read on for more!
First of all, you’re one of SIX children! How did growing up with so many siblings shape what you do today?
I think it made me appreciate the chaos. You realize that so many things are out of your control and you have to be able to just go with it. I also learned that you can cut down on the chaos, and I think that’s what I try to encourage families to do – to make sure all the baby’s needs are met before chaos ensues.
You started off working with families in a hospital setting. Can you tell us a little about what you did and how that inspired you to do what you do today?
Before I started SleepShop I worked as a Hospital Chaplain, which was hands down the most incredible job I ever had because I learned to work with people through all different walks of life. I take the same approach as I meet with different families today, helping them find a rhythm that works for them while also staying true to what they value most.
What’s your favorite part about being a mom?
The laughter the random things they say, the embarrassing things that they do, the unabashed way they love, the ridiculous conversations they have with each other. I want to remember all the weird and funny things because it truly is my favorite part.
You have extensive training helping parents and children get a good night’s rest.
Do your teachings change based on the family you’re working with at the time, or are they pretty much consistent? The end result is usually the same but the journey is always different. I want to incorporate their individual parenting style into the process. If they don’t believe in it, they won’t stay with it and it’s important that they feel good about every choice they make for their baby!
What inspires you?
Family. I truly love the family I was born into and the one God has so graciously blessed me with, and I love being around other families too. I think kids build their inner confidence starting from their home, and I believe when they get that from their own family, they are able to share it with all other future relationships.
Sleep issues are a huge worry for new parents. How do you help them ease into trusting you?
I try and be as up-front as possible from the beginning. I am clear about what my suggestions will probably be, but also share with them ways we can do things a little differently so they are comfortable with the plan. I want things done with as little tears as possible (from everyone!), which is why I take the extra time to walk families through each step, explaining the reasoning behind it.
How do you balance work with family?
Boundaries. I try to only take on a certain amount of clients at a time and that helps a lot so I can manage my time better. I give myself a lot of grace, and I ask for help when I need it. Honestly, I would be lost without my husband and my nanny!
How do you like to relax?
WINE. And Netflix. :)
What’s your favorite local family activity?
We love having people over and letting the kids all hang together. I would love to do more physical activities with the kids once they are older, but right now the easiest place to let them run wild is at our house.
What’s your favorite family vacation spot?
Anywhere that’s in the sun by a beach or a pool!
For this month’s Mom Crush Monday, we chatted with the ah-dorable Lorin Kelly of LorinKelly.com. She was not only honest about mom life, but she also gave us some super-helpful tips on life, beauty, and fitness. If you haven’t already checked out her blog, we highly suggest you do it now!
What do you love most about being a mom?
Whether it’s a first coo or a first look, being a mommy is absolutely heartwarming. However, for me, the best part of mommy-hood is growing with my daughter. She has taught me so much about myself and truly changed my personality and outlook on life - I am more patient, more kind, happier and definitely more social. At the risk of sounding cliché, she filled the space I didn't know I needed to fill. I can't imagine life without her.
What are some style tricks you hope your little one learns from you?
When is comes to style, I can’t say I’m your quintessential fashionista. Trust me, I’ve had my share of high platforms and rhinestone tops, haha. I’m a big believer that you don’t have to spend a lot to look stylish – I love to mix and match pieces from high end and budget brands to create the perfect look. I just hope my little one knows that less (skin) is more!
What has been the biggest surprise since becoming a mom?
Sleep deprivation! It’s crazy how you can still function with such little sleep. To be serious, the biggest surprise is probably how natural having this little girl feels with our relationship. My boyfriend of 9 years says he wishes he knew sooner that she would add so much to our lives.
What’s your go-to beauty item?
This is going to sound completely lame…but I’d have to say chapstick! Next, is definitely my Shu Uemura eyelash curler. Shiny lips and curled lashes? What more do you need!
How do you stay active?
The "Mommy shuffle" is currently my main source of activity. If you’re not aware of this move, it consists of a figure eight bounce and swing in a vigorous manor. In all honesty, I try to eat healthy and take lots of walks with my little girl. It's so important for your body to heal and recover fully, so I haven't put too much pressure on myself (although I can't wait for her feedings to spread out a bit more so I can go back to yoga training and hit the gym!).
What’s currently on your playlist?
I have a smorgasbord of music because I love all genres. Right now, i’m listening to a lot of Colbie Caillat, Rihanna, Jess Glynne and Major Lazer. I also may or may not have a few Disney songs sprinkled in.
How would you describe your personal style?
My personal style is very LA-brunch meets beach-chic. My favorite outfits consist of loose fitting tees, bandeaus, and jeans with wide-brimmed hats and strappy sandals.
What does Fall mean to you?
First and foremost, fall means family time. It also brings thoughts of warm cozy sweaters, comfy boots, bonfires, homemade pies and lots of trips to the snow.
Fill in the Blank: Motherhood is…
"a connection you could have never prepared for and a feeling that will scare you everyday for the rest of your life because you want to keep it safe.”
7 Must-Have fall items?
A Yummy Candle
I’m currently obsessed with this yummy pumpkin buttercream candle! It reminds me so much of the goodness associated with fall!
Yankee Candle Pumpkin Buttercream Large Tumbler Candle, $27.99, Yankee Candle
A Wide Brim Hat
This is a must-have for every mommy! Zara’s black wool special edition hat looks cute with everything from jeans and a jacket to a maxi dress and booties.
Special Edition Hat, $49.90, Zara
A Comfy Footie
Kickee Pants is one of my go-to brands. Everything is so breathable and comfy! This footie could not be more perfect for fall.
Kickee Pants Lotus Raindrop Footie, $35, Hatched Baby
A Playful Dress
I’m absolutely dying over this little dress by Kira Kids! Who doesn’t love macaroons?!
Kira Kids Mini Macaroons Onesie Dress, $48, Hatched Baby
Tights that Match that Playful Dress
Staying warm in fall is simple when you’ve got some great tights to pair under dresses. I love these striped leggings and know my little one will, too!
Kira Kids Pink Stripe Leggings, $36, Hatched Baby
A Chic LBD
I can’t wait for my first night out (complete with a well-deserved cocktail, of course). Everyone needs an LBD for fall, and this off-the-shoulder dress is perfect!
Off-the-Shoulder Sweater Dress, $19.90, Forever 21
An On-Trend Tote
Burgundy is all the rage for fall, and this reversible faux leather tote is so lovely! I especially love the fact that the reverse side is cognac.
Street Level Reversible Faux Leather Tote, $48, Nordstrom
Meet Dayna - mama, wifey, and owner of Prism Boutique in Long Beach. Her 17-month-old girl, Indigo is an absolute beaut, and she’s currently 17 weeks pregnant with yet another girl! We’ve known Dayna for some time now, so it was great to sit down with her and chat about business, family, mama me-time, and fall fashion.
How would you describe Prism?
When I first opened Prism, I didn't know who my customer was so I just chose to sell stuff I liked. From there, it's evolved into a lovely curated selection with everything from wear-everyday basics to unique, statement making pieces. Our customer is a bohemian fashion lover that likes a little edge too – just like me! We are a small growing business, with only six employees in addition to myself. Our lovely customers enjoy the personal, boutique experience and the clothes we select for them.
How would you describe your personal style?
I'm a working mom so I need to be comfortable without compromising my personal style or sense of fashion. I'm a dress lover and like having unique pieces that set me apart. I also like to wear a lot of jewelry; I honestly don't feel dressed without it.
How has your style changed since becoming a mom?
I never feel like putting heels on anymore! I truly believe your clothes should be comfortable so you can get the true value of each piece. My mantra is ‘if it's not comfortable, don’t wear it.’
How do you like to treat yourself?
Every six weeks, I get a massage and facial. I look forward to it and enjoy spending a little time to myself.
Is there a beauty product you can’t live without?
I use l’Occitane Crème Divine every night.
Favorite local spot?
Scratch Bakery in Long Beach! It’s across the street from Prism, and their coffee donut muffin is divine! I get their treats for every event and party – the best!
And last but definitely not least, what are your must-haves for fall?
Every mama needs a big bag for fall! This style will transition beautifully into winter, too. Cleobella Oxblood Hendrix Fringe Tote, $388, Prism Boutique
This is the perfect wear-everywhere pair of booties. Bonus: they're so comfortable! Matisse Footwear Brown El Toro Boot, $168, Prism Boutique
We currently sell Chaser at Prism, so I will be definitely be stocking up on graphic tees at Hatched for my toddler. Chaser Brand Woodstock Tee, $30, Hatched Baby
Baby bells, you’re killin’ me! Pink Chicken Josie Bell Bottoms, $46, Hatched Baby
I can’t believe I’ll have a newborn again so I can see her wear sweet little sets like this one! Kickee Pants Pink Blackbird Ruffle Set, $42, Hatched Baby
Obsessing over this soft chambray blanket – I’ll be sharing it with my baby for sure! Head Regal Brushed Denim Chambray Fuzz Blanket, $180, Hatched Baby
I am a born-and-raised Oklahoma girl, a wife, mommy, and a founding partner of the mommy and me organization, Motherhood Together. My husband is from California, and we met in college at the University of Oklahoma when fate in the form of a baseball scholarship took him there. After graduating, we moved west and spent a few years sowing some wild oats, then got married and had our sweet baby girl Olivia, who is now almost two years old and the love of our lives.
Olivia was born in the early fall, and I always think of the time after she was born in distinct stages. First, there were the first few weeks. I spent this time in the same fog that most new moms do: I was sleep deprived, overwhelmed, amazed, and playing a tug-of-war of emotions between being madly in love/fall-to-my-knees grateful, and fighting off a nagging twinge of depression that I had never experienced before. It wasn’t until I called a close friend sobbing asking what was wrong with me, that I learned that the slight depression was as normal as could be, and would pass in the coming weeks. It did, thank goodness, and then I entered the next stage: LaLa Land. I loved the newborn stage. I didn’t care much that we were waking every few hours through the night, or that I spent most of the day covered in a crusty combination of spit-up and baby poo. We had settled into a nice routine, I was feeling more like myself, and we were getting to know each other and really becoming a family. The holidays arrived and we spent our days showing off our gorgeous daughter to all our various family members, and then traveled to Oklahoma to celebrate Christmas and do more of the same. By all accounts, it was a lovely time.
The next stage was what I think of as The New Normal. January rolled around, the holidays were over, and having finished traveling for the time being, we settled back in at home. We passed our days managing growth spurts, recording milestones, marveling at every new move. Life was still wonderful, but the fog had cleared and I realized that most of my conversations were with a little person who didn’t yet know how to speak, and the rest of them were all about the little person who didn’t yet know how to speak. One evening as I was counting the minutes until my husband would be home so I could have some actual adult interaction, it hit me – I needed friends. Not just friends, I had some fabulous friends who I adored, but specifically I needed mom friends.
Honestly, it wasn’t until I actually found my amazing mom friends that I realized how very much I had needed them. I always considered the saying “it takes a village to raise a child” to be an overused conversation filler, but then I found my “village” and realized it was the piece of the puzzle that had been missing. The camaraderie between moms is something to be treasured. You’ve been pooped on and haven’t slept in two days and started crying because you realized you were out of your favorite breakfast cereal? No one understands that like a fellow mom. You’re dying to get out of the house to have some wine and adult conversation, but it has to be in the window of time after your husband gets home but before you have to pump again? So are your mom friends. They are ready to laugh and cry with you, hold your hand when your baby is sick, or sit in silence with you when you just. need. a minute. They get it. They’re in the thick of it, too, and sometimes you are each other’s lifelines.
This is how the idea for Motherhood Together came to life. There were multiple times in the first year of motherhood that my friends and I would be together and one of us would start talking about how genuinely thankful we are for each other (motherhood tends to make you pretty sappy). We shuddered to think how differently our experiences would have been had we not had each other to hold us up. Sharing the experience of motherhood with fellow moms is a bonding experience like no other. I mean, who else will understand if you whip open your bra, flash your nipple and ask if it looks normal? If you don’t have someone you can show your nipple to, girl, you need some mom friends. We wanted to offer new moms a place to come every week, meet other new moms, and find out what exactly is going to make them thrive in motherhood. At Motherhood Together, we pride ourselves on being “mom-centric”, basing our practice on the belief that taking care of yourself is the best way to take care of your family. The most powerful step a new mom can take is to find her community of mom friends, and we hope to take the work out of it and make the process nothing but fun. Because, as my mom would say, “If momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” And ain’t that the truth?
Meet Sara from Sprouted Kitchen. She is as real as the food she crafts, a gifted writer and cook, married to an equally gifted photographer. Thanks to her adorable baby boy, Curran, she can now add "Mom" to the list of words that describe her. We were lucky enough to have Sara answers some questions for us about motherhood and of course, food.
How are you finding the balance as a new mom?
Oof. I don't think I've gotten there yet. I thought I'd have things more dialed in by four months, but turns out I didn't get a particularly "easy baby". That's my fault for building the expectation that I could (proverbially) just slip curran in my back pocket and carry on with life as usual. I am a lady who likes completing tasks, tidiness, keeping busy and he's a particular fellow who doesn't like going to sleep so a lot of my day is spent encouraging him to rest...to put it delicately ;) I am going down kicking, but I am realizing how much of my personal agenda is going to be compromised in order to honor the joy that is being a mom. The balance you mention has yet to be found, but I'm working towards it and each day seems a little better.
Both my husband and I work from home which makes it easier to care for our son, but harder to get work done. We've been trying to pass him back and forth when the other needs to work, and that work is now much more efficient since we know we have "windows" with Curran (read, less Pinterest and more emails). I've had to relinquish some of my desire to be productive, as this season will happen to be one where the house is a little dustier and meals are simpler. I walk with girlfriends with the stroller for exercise and to catch up or sneak out while he naps to make a pilates class - I am so glad Hugh is around and our families are close so I can do that. Being physically active calms me down, so I find some way to get light exercise, with or without the baby along, for some sense of peace. We're not big television people, so I'm hoping to preserve my time with my husband by having the few hours after he goes to sleep for us to pay attention to each other or maybe go out on a date or two once my tiny sleep resister doesn't put up such a fight.
How have your eating habits changed since becoming a mom?
I'm breastfeeding, so while I feel like eating well and packing in the vegetables and legumes, my babes tum prefers otherwise. I am trying to keep things as non-gassy as possible so I have to think twice about everything I am eating. I don't eat meat really so I eat more fish than I did pre-baby to try and get adequate protein. I eat a lot of avocado, mayo-less tuna salad, eggs, berries, sweet potatoes, brown rice tortillas. There isn't a lot of variety in what I eat, I sort of throw things together. I also double up when I'm prepping food - once I get a window to cook, I make more than I need so I have things ready in the fridge (ie. a big tray of roasted vegetables, extra quinoa to put in a tupperware, a big bowl of cut fruit). Having things ready has been key...and I eat a lot of almond butter toast. A LOT of toast :)
What is fall to you?
Fall, to me, ushers in a bit of quiet and calm. We have bustling summers because it is the busy season for my husbands business and we're trying to be outside, go to the beach, take a trip etc. It is less fruit and grilling and more squash and baked goods. Around here, it is my favorite weather because you can still enjoy dinner outside and go for walks in shorts, but you aren't sticking to your sheets from a balmy night. I like to wear a jacket but still pull off a beach picnic in early october - that makes the cost of living in southern california worth it to me :)
What are your favorite fall recipes?
I am a pomegranate crazy lady - they are gorgeous, tart, crunchy, good for you. I LOVE them. So I really like this salad. These noodles are probably one of Hugh's favorites. And this gluten free Lemon Loaf is probably what I have made most repeatedly from the site.
Fill in the blank: Motherhood is _______________.
Motherhood is the greatest accomplishment, joy and challenge I've known.
We fell in love with their cookbook back in 2011 and cannot wait to get our hands on their second book (slated for 2015). Best of luck to this lovely lady, amazing mama and incredible cook!