18 August 2018

favorite baby things

maybe the first thing both mums-to-be and mums-to-a-brood love to ask is ~ "what's your favorite baby product?" and, you know, it's fun to answer. so much fun that robbie, too, listens for this one like a hawk and is jumping in to the conversation before i can stop him, like, you know, pouring a healthy glass of wine, dimming the lights, grabbing a throw pillow, lighting a candle, leaning into this chat like, "let me tell you all about this cosleeper..."

talking about baby stuff is just plain fun. it is. it's tender and sweet and life-giving. but it's also a near-spiritual experience for someone who sees the poetry in these things. 

the truth is you just don't need a lot of stuff. you don't. your baby doesn't. you can nurse nude, you can wrap them in your own sweater in a pinch, you can get white onesies delivered same-day some places, you can carry babe in your arms. baby will fold into your life organically and earth-shatteringly and perfectly --- with or without all the things. but the right things can make your life smoother, i promise you that and this smoothness will open floodgates of precious time, and this, this will help you write the memories. 

oh, and the other (vitally important) truth: you will learn for yourself what those things are. 

thank you for asking for mine, though. i'm humbled, i really am. and here they are...grab something cozy to sip as this is a long one...a few favorites and then a few more, from both me and robbie...


*hands down our favorite baby product. we feel so assured putting him in something so rigorously tested and well-made and it was so easy to use from birth. it's beautiful, machine washes & dries, soothed his moro (startle) reflex, and can easily be taken along if babe needs to nap at nana's or in a hotel...just a really wonderful thing that helped us to write our sleep story with roo.* 

* our favorites have been max + moose and fog linen co. * 

* bibs pacifiers from denmark or natursutten are faves* 

pacifier clip
*we have this wooden one and will probably grab this silicone one as he starts teething more* 

*these burpies are huge, soft, malleable, and thin but amazingly absorbent. and beautiful. as a mama to a babe with severe reflex, i have been around the block with burpies and these are iiiiit.*

*so far we've used solly baby & wildbird and love both so much. carriers are wonderful not only for out n about, but also around the house. keep 'em snuggled close with hands free to clean, etc. we're ordering up a dove gray mesh ergo next. 

a bassinet / side-sleeper 
we used a bedside moses basket and rocker which we loved. this was another contender. or a bedside-attaching one like this. 

*i'll do a separate post all about clothes, sooo many feelings and thoughts on this! but if you were to buy your babe one thing, i say kimonos or kimono style onesies. organic cotton if you can, lil baby skin is delicate, and organic, i find, is the most sensitive, softest, and holds up best. here is a trusty one.*

*prevent cradle cap, and a soothing after-bath ritual for babe*


our favorite toys (at 6 months)

*like clothes, i'll do a whole post on this soon. i will say "day dreamers" is currently in our diaper bag at all times & is roo's very favorite.*

6+ months food prep
babycook food maker / spoons / bowls / sippy cup (put ice cubes in for a fun shaker toy!) 


*such a personal thing, but for what it's worth, i love and live in these bras. my advice is to find a bra you feel pretty in, can lounge in...and then buy like three or four of those.*

* so personal; i love these organic cotton ones. washable and so soft. * 

i use boppy, but my sis-in-law swears by my breast friend and both seem wonderful.  

some new clothes 
cozy, feminine things you feel lovely in. if you're breastfeeding, a few button-up house dresses. cozy wrap or kimono sweaters. a few more robes and nightgowns and pajamas than you think you need. 

BELOVED NONESSENTIALS (or "semi-essentials")

*at first not totally necessary thing as roo would sleep all night through anything. as babies grow, though, their sleep pattern changes and they more readily wake if disrupted (if, for instance, you have two boisterous dogs). using one from the beginning helped because even if he *could* sleep through background noise, he now associates the sound with bed time.* 

*makes the perfect nightlight as red-tone lights are less disruptive to sleep than blue-tone. also comes as a wall nightlight if that's your vibe.*

*didn't need this at first, but now roo can move a bit more, it's comforting to observe his naps without peeking every three minutes. of course you'll just watch the monitor all the time anyway because is there anything sweeter than watching babe sleep? we did tons (literally hours-made-days) of research and are so so happy with this model. the camera is excellent, good battery, great size monitor. we spend all of his nap times just talking about how much we love this monitor, haha.*

*the uppababy vista was admittedly a splurge, but we are so happy we got the one we loved. we are bigtime walkers and this makes it so easy to get out and about. it's so smooth, packs tiny, stylish, and can be used as a double or triple. we got the loic white color and even living in rainy washington it's kept tidy!* 

pram cover 
* a car seat /pram cover of some sort is essential, though you can always tuck a muslin swaddle around in a pinch! that said, we have this one and it helps with stroller naps as well as privacy & protection from germs. 

*this is such a beloved thing, this keepsake journal from pregnancy through age 18 is simple, timeless, heirloom quality.* 

*if you don't yet have one, you must! this is my favorite way to photograph roo.*

wooden clothing hangers
*the ones from ikea are a steal and so lovely. i find that having beautiful hangers makes me want to curate a smaller and more quality wardrobe for roo. display one of babe's newborn outfits on a knob, so sweet.* 

*i had this long before having a babe, but am ever more thankful for it now. perfect for small spaces (or in inclement weather) and honestly makes doing the wash feel a sacred ritual (which it is, no?). 


06 August 2018

word of the day, baths are fantastic, ocean eyes, and other baby things

it's ten p.m. and roo is asleep in our room and robbie's at work for another two hours -- where you can find me is exactly here. this very bed, cozied up on covers, missing the boys from these photos -- the one i hold and the one who took them. (and lo, how the lil one is the spitting image of the other.)

life lately has been full -- no, spilling over brim and brim. my heart feels peace in the way only at-long-last baby brings. there's so much i want to write and so many ways i want to write and right now it all feels a lot -- i will maybe someday sort it out. and so, poetics aside (for another day) here's just a lil bit about life with ulysses these days...

~ ulysses is a small bird, a roll on each thigh barely emerged, still mostly in clothing tagged "0-3 mo" as we inch towards six months on earth.

~ speaking of six months...how absolutely unbelievable...

~ a pure sunshine beam. he smiles with his ocean eyes. smiles seem his inexhaustible gift (and too: belly laughs, inhaled squeals, heaps of raspberry blows). my favorite thing in the world (in any world -- ask me in my next life, my answer will remain) is when i round the bend and baby is with papa and baby spots me and absolutely tumbles into a fits of giggles and grins. i don't deserve this -- this babylove. but goodness will i take it, arms wider than worlds.

~ for two months, sleep has been fitful. in earliest days, ulysses would settle into dreams lightyears-long -- eight hours or more. these days feel untenable now, like preserved in amber, as we cradle a baby boy who wakes often, sometimes several times, sometimes hour upon starlit hour. the absolute bare-laden truth is that i will take it, my goodness, i will-- i will nurse my nursling and coo my roo as many hours on as many nights as he wishes. i have never felt so needed, have never felt so utterly myself, have never felt so exactly where i am meant to be.

~ if ever our dove fusses we like to ask, "where does peace live?" and point to our very chests, point to his own, a gentle effleurage. (what we want him to know is this, so simple a thing: that peace lives inside.)

~ a new tradition, "word of the day" ~ just something for a mama to study in spare moments (if only a wiki page or webster's) and chat about with babe throughout the day. the first was "stardust" then "enso" and tomorrow i think "water lotus."

~ his nightly bath -- to be counted among baby's greatest delights. at first it was maybe just a feeling of near-floating on water but now it's more: splashing, pawing tub sides, lavender bubbles, water pouring from Baby Cup, catching reflections in faucets.

~ baby's favorite bedtime books "day dreamers" -- which mama now has memorized -- and "yak and dove"

~ a true snuggle bear, likes to be held tummy to tummy while he takes in the world. he gives smiles freely to any recipient and then quickly burrows his face on mama's shoulder (bashful) (a lot like her).


05 August 2018


a new nest in the trees. baby boy cranes his neck in a backwards curve, birdlike, to take in the forest, wide blue eyes wild with wonder here. it smells like christmas on july mornings. windows aplenty and bright, and a porch for drinking coffee. when we first found her i saw them instantly, the other children bounding down the stairs in a funny wavy-haired tumble, saw their names so clearly like etched in sand, so many curving l's and o's and e's and u's. less like dreaming and more like touching, now.

there is so much i want to share -- and soon.