inspired by pregnancy

To my daughter,
Even before you were born, you inspired me. During the first weeks of my pregnancy, I knew the enormous effort you were making—rapidly growing, building every muscle, organ and bone. It might sound silly, but I could feel your energy circulating through me—and it was both calming and reassuring.

And thus, we began a daily dialogue; one without words.

My mother gave me the name 'Bliss' as an ever-present reminder to find joy in hidden places. And—when joined with you—I instantaneously felt a new essence that was bright and palpable. It emanated a feeling that I wanted to bottle up forever, to one day share with you.

I wondered if that moment, that feeling, was felt by every future mother so I decided that those nine months—or, rather, 10 in your case—was enough time to create a collection of jewelry to capture that feeling and dedicate it to you.

I never could have imagined the energy that I felt with you inside me. I anticipated weakness, illness and slower days. Those came but were far and few between. Instead, what was most present during this pregnancy was my creativity. You, my darling, were enigmatic in the power you had. For something so small, so dependent, it was on you that I felt reliant. You were a source for me throughout those months.

When designing before you, my process was twofold. It was introspective: I would search within myself—pose questions—to find inspiration. First, for my visual inspiration, and then again to pinpoint the feel I wished to infuse into each design. Armed with those two elements, I would then begin to sketch.

With you, though, inspiration arrived in a visceral, tangible form. I no longer needed to search for it.

The shift happened rather abruptly. One day, in our first trimester, I was walking around New York City and a stranger commented that I was smiling. There I was, incognito, walking through the city, moving with a beautiful secret only my nearest knew.

You were on your way and the world was about to feel full, the light more bright. This moment of anticipation and excitement eventually became a state of being. I wanted to remember the feeling forever.

During our second trimester, there's no better way to describe it other than having felt like a warrior. It was inner strength and vibrancy like I had never known before. Throughout those weeks and months, creativity blossomed, work flowed, conversations inspired and life seemed wholly in place.

And then, during the third trimester throughout a balmy August in New York City, your weight barely slowed us down. Up until your arrival, on the eleventh of September in the late afternoon, I worked diligently to put the pieces into place for this new commemorative collection—in which, one day, I hope you'll have so much pride.

For you, my baby, I made a gold necklace with a delicately carved half-moon pendant made of crystal quartz. I named that piece Brevity, as it was meant to represent the fleeting moment of time when we were sharing the same energy as one being.

Meticulously designed so that the stone—which is, by nature, energy neutralizing and a representation of clarity, intention, and connection—would rest upon the skin, my skin, our skin, and absorb our shared energy. A tiny keepsake of this precious time together.

I wore that necklace every day of my pregnancy with you, and while giving birth.

As I write this today, we are now two, and the tables have turned. Now, it is me who is excited to try to inspire you. We live in a world of firsts together, each new experience an opportunity to show you beauty, activate your senses, spark your curiosity and encourage your own ideas.

In your new life outside, our entire world has shifted. A new world has emerged, one where minutes are experienced with heightened clarity and sunsets represent an evolution that I could never have imagined. Shadows and light which always inspired me, are fascinating to you which then motivates me to view shapes and contrast anew. In daydreaming of what is happening inside your eyes, I have now come to a new place of inspiration.

It leaves me wondering if we'll continue our conversation without words forever.

I'm excited to find out.


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Who says you have to wait for birthdays or holidays to give your bestie a great gift? A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs in these more-than-trying times. We've rounded up some of our favorite go-to gifts that are certain to be a bright spot in her week. But be warned, you may want to snag a few for yourself. (You deserve it, mama.)

Here are some our favorite "just because" gifts to give our hardworking mama friends.

New Mother face + body care duo

volition face + body care duo

This correcting oil and stretch mark minimizer is perfect for the pregnant mama looking to keep her pregnancy glow. The correcting oil brightens the skin while reducing dark spots, and the stretch mark minimizer works to smooth her ever-growing belly.


Allover roller

esker allover roller

This jade roller goes beyond your typical face roller and can be used anywhere on the body. It works to increase stimulation and reduce puffiness and is perfect for applying any oils to the face or body. Plus, it feels like a mini spa treatment.


Kombucha making kit

farmsteady kombucha making kit

What could be a more perfect gift for the health-obsessed friend? This kombucha making kit comes with everything you need to brew your own homemade green tea kombucha. They'll think this is the tastiest gift ever.


Laetitia lipstick

cupid & psyche laetitia

This red lipstick is perfect for your makeup enthusiast bestie who is looking to spruce up her life in quarantine. Crafted in the United States, these bee and vegan-friendly and cruelty-free lipsticks are created to flatter all complexions. Cupid and Psyche Beauty makes finding the perfect red lip way too easy!


Jigsaw puzzle

inner piecec jigsaw puzzle

Mamas need to destress now more than ever during quarantine. This adorable jigsaw puzzle is perfect for the mama who needs a brain break! The 500-piece puzzle designed by artist Ray Oranges features an abstract gradient design that fits a standard frame when completed. Bonus: It's printed on recycled paper and the company donates $1 from every puzzle sold to youth mindfulness programs.


Matilda's Bloombox

matilda's bloombox

If we have to be stuck inside, we might as well have some gorgeous florals to brighten up the space. Matilda's Bloombox locally sources blooms, delivers them to her door and provides simple tips on how to arrange it into a beautiful bouquet.


'I Am Enough' bracelet

I Am Enough bracelet

Let this dainty bracelet serve as a constant reminder to your bestie that she is enough. She'll wear this on her wrist and read this daily oath to herself, "I Am Enough."


Glow assorted teas

vahdam low assorted teas

This tea gift box set covers the entire spectrum of flavors from sweet to spicy. Individually packaged in beautiful tins, your gal pal will feel like a queen sipping her morning tea. Originally $40, this set is currently on sale for just $24. We'll take two, please.


Find your voice journal

find your voice journal

Journaling is a great way to ease anxiety and will slow your bestie's racing mind before bed. This gift is perfect for first time journalists and includes prompts, daily quotes and coloring pages to help her unlock her potential and find her voice.


Premium frother

shore magic premium frother

This gift is fitting for your latte-sipping bestie who can't go a day without her coffee. All she has to do is add two scoops of collagen to her favorite drink, and she'll have a perfectly foamy drink ready in seconds. Skipping the drive-thru line has never been so easy!


Bath soak infusion kit

maude bath soak infusion kit

Say hello to hydration! She'll be feeling smooth and relaxed as ever after a long bath soaking in these salts. This vegan + cruelty-free set incorporates dead sea salt and dehydrated coconut milk powder for an ultra hydrating experience.


Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

Tiny Tags 'mama' necklace

It's a hard-earned title she answers to a hundred times per day. Whether she's new to the club or a seasoned professional, this delicate script 'mama' necklace is guaranteed to be a perfect fit.


Superfood honey

Beekeeper's Naturals B.Powered honey

With a lack of sleep and jam-packed days, getting through the afternoon can be a real challenge. Send her a powerful pick-me-up in the form of a therapeutic blend of royal jelly, bee pollen, propolis and raw honey. It makes the ideal companion for tea, smoothies, yogurt or even on its on.


Calming midnight mask with melatonin

Who doesn't deserve a reminder to pamper themself every once in awhile? Even better, this mask does all its work at night while you're sleeping with no extra effort needed. It's an amazing plant-powered antioxidant-packed mask that has melatonin, wild dandelion leaf and hyaluronic acid to rehydrate, repair and reset facial skin. It's so good, you might want to gift it to yourself. We won't tell, mama.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


Why do all of my good parenting or baby-focused inventions come after they've already been invented by someone else? Sigh.

Like the Puj hug hooded baby towel, aka the handiest, softest cotton towel ever created.

Safely removing a wet, slippery baby from the bath can be totally nerve-wracking, and trying to hold onto a towel at the same time without soaking it in the process seems to require an extra arm altogether. It's no wonder so much water ends up on the floor, the countertops, or you(!) after bathing your little one. Their splashing and kicking in the water is beyond adorable, of course, but the clean up after? Not as much.

It sounds simple: Wash your child, sing them a song or two, let them play with some toys, then take them out, place a towel around them, and dry them off. Should be easy, peasy, lemon squeezy, right?

But it hasn't been. It's been more—as one of my favorite memes says—difficult, difficult, lemon difficult. Because until this towel hit the bathtime scene, there was no easy-peasy way to pick up your squirming wet baby without drenching yourself and/or everything around you.

Plus, there is nothing cuter than a baby in a plush hooded towel, right? Well, except when it's paired with a dry, mess-free floor, maybe.

Check out our favorites to make bathtime so much easier:

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Our list of 100 baby names that should be on everyone's list this year includes more choices than in the past of names that are obscure and surprising. That's because there are so many more unusual baby names coming into widespread use and baby namers have become a lot more adventurous.

Expectant parents do not need to be told to move beyond Jennifer and Jason. Their thinking about names has evolved to the point that the most useful thing we can do is offer a large menu of intriguing choices.

Here are our picks for the 100 best surprising + unusual baby names now.

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