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Here’s a pep talk for the days when you don’t want to adult

What truly matters today? 1. I show up with love. 2. My babies are safe and loved. That’s it. 

Here’s a pep talk for the days when you don’t want to adult

This morning, I needed a pep talk.

A pep talk for myself, by myself.


Many mornings I wake up (and almost) immediately joyful and ready to face the day. Some mornings I feel it even more strongly—not just face the day, but own the day. To make it the best day ever. Those are the magical kinds of days—the ones that start with inspiration.

This morning wasn’t that morning. Not by a long shot. Among other factors, it was one day too many I was woken up quite early. Way too little sleep, for way too many nights. This was a morning my first thought upon waking was Why won’t anyone let me sleep? and then, immediately following came the onslaught of lists ticking in my mind.

Things I have to get done, things the kids need, all the places I was supposed to go, on and on and on. Thrown in there too was a bit of my critical self—she tends to pop up when I’m over tired and over whelmed:

You haven’t baked with the kids in ages. Why don’t you bake with the kids? Other moms do that. You really should be reading more with Tucker. Even if he says he’s too busy to sit and read—he’s going to Kindergarten, he needs to read more books. Other moms read all the time with their kids. You snapped at Grace yesterday. Don’t snap today. She’s only 3 once!

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I tried my first line of defense for my anxiety-filled mornings—an approach an old teacher taught. She advised us to lie in bed for a moment and take in a few big breaths. She said there were two ways to start the day, and the variation on three words could could create your attitude for the day. One could either say “Good God … morning...” OR “Good Morning, God!” (Substitute whatever you need for God…Sunshine, World, Love…)

I tried it this morning. It sort of changed my attitude. But not quite. Still felt heavy.

Nothing was really wrong, per say, I just didn’t want to do it. Didn’t want to be in charge of everything for everyone else. Wanted to crawl back into my bed, hide there a few more hours, then slowly rise, sip a coffee (that would remain hot until I finished it), walk the dog, and maybe, just maybe, then join the world.

But. Not a possibility. Not even close.

It was time for a pep talk.

What matters today? What truly matters today?

1. I show up with love.

2. My babies are safe and loved.

And that’s it. That’s truly it. The rest of it doesn’t need to be done—TODAY. All other expectations can go out the window. Nothing else is imperative. I needed to feel that.

This, I believe, is the great advantage I have as a person who has dealt with depression and anxiety in life before becoming a mother. I have a tool box to help me see the light. I have tools to call upon to help me swim my way above water.

One of the biggest tools is to let go.

So long as we are safe and sound—we are okay. The rest can wait.

I let go.

I got my kiddos involved in an activity, made a cup of tea, and meditated. I sat quietly with myself until I could feel my heart soften, notice my brain slowing down, and relax into truth.

My most important job of the day was to love. To approach the world with an open heart and an open mind. To find delight in what came my way—not to attempt to force the day into the vision I had. To remember I don’t need to do anything better, or more, or differently, but that I’m already doing enough, more than enough, by showing up. By being present. By bringing love and joy to my little corner of the world.

I reminded myself to lower expectations for myself. I took another breath and lowered them again. I’m already enough—my anxiety and heavy heart were unnecessary.

I moved through a couple of quick sun salutations, inviting my body to stretch. I decided to change out of yesterday’s comfy pants and I put on cute jeans and top, actually brushed my hair, and put on a little mascara.

I would own this day. I would fill it with love.

I opened Mary Oliver’s Felicity, knowing whatever poem I opened to was the one I needed to hear. I opened to The World I Live In.

I have refused to live/locked in the orderly house of/ reasons and proofs. The world I live in and believe in/is wider than that. Any anyway,/what’s wrong with Maybe?

You wouldn’t believe what once or/twice I have seen. I’ll just/tell you this: only if there are angels in your head will you/ ever, possibly/see one.

At that point, my babies seemed sparkly again and I was ready to rock and roll. I’m now writing this from The Little Gym, watching my courageous little three year old cross that dreaded balance beam all by herself, “Nothing Gonna Stop Us Now” blaring from the speakers, and yes, tears of complete and utter love for this life are spilling out of my eyes.

Some days it comes easily. Some days it needs a pep talk.

Time-saving formula tips our editors swear by

Less time making bottles, more time snuggling.

As a new parent, it can feel like feeding your baby is a full-time job—with a very demanding nightshift. Add in the additional steps it takes to prepare a bottle of formula and, well… we don't blame you if you're eager to save some time when you can. After all, that means more time for snuggling your baby or practicing your own well-deserved self-care.

Here's the upside: Many, many formula-feeding mamas before you have experienced the same thing, and they've developed some excellent tricks that can help you mix up a bottle in record time. Here are the best time-saving formula tips from editors here at Motherly.

1. Use room temperature water

The top suggestion that came up time and time again was to introduce bottles with room temperature water from the beginning. That way, you can make a bottle whenever you need it without worrying about warming up water—which is a total lifesaver when you have to make a bottle on the go or in the middle of the night.

2. Buy online to save shopping time

You'll need a lot of formula throughout the first year and beyond—so finding a brand like Comforts, which offers high-quality infant formula at lower prices, will help you save a substantial amount of money. Not to mention, you can order online or find the formula on shelves during your standard shopping trip—and that'll save you so much time and effort as well.

3. Pre-measure nighttime bottles

The middle of the night is the last time you'll want to spend precious minutes mixing up a bottle. Instead, our editors suggest measuring out the correct amount of powder formula into a bottle and putting the necessary portion of water on your bedside table. That way, all you have to do is roll over and combine the water and formula in the bottle before feeding your baby. Sounds so much better than hiking all the way to the kitchen and back at 3 am, right?

4. Divide serving sizes for outings

Before leaving the house with your baby, divvy up any portions of formula and water that you may need during your outing. Then, when your baby is hungry, just combine the pre-measured water and powder serving in the bottle. Our editors confirm this is much easier than trying to portion out the right amount of water or formula while riding in the car.

5. Memorize the mental math

Soon enough, you'll be able to prepare a bottle in your sleep. But, especially in the beginning or when increasing your baby's serving, the mental math can take a bit of time. If #mombrain makes it tough to commit the measurements to memory, write up a cheat sheet for yourself or anyone else who will prepare your baby's bottle.

6. Warm up chilled formula with water

If you're the savvy kind of mom who prepares and refrigerates bottles for the day in advance, you'll probably want to bring it up to room temperature before serving. Rather than purchase a bottle warmer, our editors say the old-fashioned method works incredibly well: Just plunge the sealed bottle in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes and—voila!—it's ready to serve.

Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on Comfortsforbaby.com to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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9 products that will help baby sleep better (and longer!)

For many parents, attempting naps and bedtime can seem like a never-ending cycle of rocking, shushing and hoping for some kind of magic sleep solution.

How do I get my baby to sleep? This is one of the most commonly asked questions among new parents, and it makes sense, given that babies are born with their days and nights mixed up. For many parents, attempting naps and bedtime can seem like a never-ending cycle of rocking, shushing and hoping for some kind of magic sleep solution.

And while that might not exist (yet), we have found some of the best products out there that can help baby fall asleep faster and for longer durations. Because when baby is sleeping, so are you!

Dreamland Baby weighted sleep sack and swaddle

Designed by a mama, parents swear by this weighted sleep sack. It mimics your hug to give your baby security and comfort that helps them get to sleep faster and stay asleep longer. The detachable swaddle wing makes it easy to transition as they grow.

It's also super easy to get on and off, and includes a bottom-up zipper for late night changes, so you don't have to wake your baby in the process.

$79

Yogasleep Hushh portable sound machine

Yogasleep hushh sound machine

With three soothing options, this is a perfect solution to help your baby settle when naps are on the go and during travel! I love how compact this noise machine is and that it can run all night with one charge.

$30

Bebe au Lait muslin crib sheets

Burt's Bees Organic Crib Sheets

With a variety of print options to choose from, these breathable sheets are *so* soft and smooth, even through multiple washes. The luxury fabric keeps little ones warm without overheating—a formula that helps ensure more sleep for everyone.

$32

The Simple Folk perfect pajamas

The Simple Folk perfect pajamas

You know what's going to help baby have their best sleep ever? Some quality, super soft pajamas. The timeless (and aptly named!) Perfect Pajama from The Simple Folk are some of our favorites. They last forever and they're made from organic pima cotton that is safe on baby's precious skin. They come in a wide range of sizes so siblings can match and feature fold-over hand covers on sizes up to 12 months.

$37

The Snoo bassinet

Snoo

Designed by expert pediatrician and sleep guru Dr. Harvey Karp, the Snoo bassinet gently rocks your baby to sleep while snuggled up in the built-in swaddle. Not only does it come with sensors that adjust the white noise and movement based on your baby's needs, there is also an app that allows you to adjust the settings directly from your phone.

While this item is a bit on the expensive side, there is now an option to rent for $3.50 a day, which is a total game changer!

$1295

Hatch Baby Rest sound machine + nightlight

best baby sound machine

The Hatch Baby Rest is a dual sound machine and nightlight that will grow with your family. Many parents use this product with their infants as a white-noise machine and then as a "time to rise" solution for toddlers.

The thing I love most about this product is that the light it gives off isn't too bright, and you can even select different color preferences; giving your toddler choices at bedtime.

$59.99

Crane humidifier

Crane Humidifier

The only thing worse than a sick baby is a baby who is sick and not sleeping well. The Crane humidifier helps take care of this by relieving congestion and helping your baby breathe better while sleeping.

Personally, I think the adorable design options alone are enough of a reason to purchase this product, and your child will love watching steam come out of the elephant's trunk!

$46.99

Naturepedic organic crib mattress

Naturpedic Lightweight Organic Mattress

In the first few months of life, babies can spend up to 17 hours a day sleeping, so choosing a mattress that is safe (read: no chemicals!) and comfortable is incredibly important.

Naturepedic uses allergen-friendly and waterproof materials with babies and children in mind, making them easy to clean and giving you peace of mind.

$259.00

Happiest Baby sleepea 5-second swaddle

best baby swaddle

There are baby swaddles and then there is Sleepea. Similar to the brand's swaddle that is built into the Snoo, the Sleepea is magic for multiple reasons. First, it's got mesh panels ensuring baby never overheats. Second, the zipper zips from the top or the bottom, so you can change the baby's diaper in the middle of the night without ever waking them. Third, it's hip safe. Fourth, the patterns are SO cute. And fifth, the interior swaddle wrap that keeps baby's ams down has a "quiet" velcro that won't wake baby if you need to readjust while they're asleep.

$27.95

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A few years ago, while my wife's baby bump got bigger and my daddy reading list grew longer, I felt cautiously optimistic that this parenthood thing would, somehow, suddenly click one day. The baby would come, instincts would kick in, and the transition from established couple to a new family would be tiring but not baffling.

Boy was I wrong.

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