Menu

The Mama Morning Juggle

3 perfectly put-together moms share how hard it really is to get out the door.

The Mama Morning Juggle

*We've partnered with Bugaboo to make your mama morning juggle a little easier.

Oh how we love that quintessential image of motherhood: the perfectly put-together mom cruising down the street, with her smiling, cooing baby tucked sweetly inside her stroller. What you don’t see (and what we sure didn’t know about before motherhood!) is the storm that came before the calm...otherwise known as the mama morning juggle. The spills, the tantrums, the spit-ups, the rushed showers, the mascara applied while nursing. You know, the magic that every mom must perform every single day, just to get out the door.

The perfect stroller can certainly make your morning juggle easier....or at the very least, give you something to look forward to when you step out onto the pavement. So we've partnered with Bugaboo to help put some context behind those quintessential images of motherhood. Below, 3 of the most put-together NYC mamas we know to get honest about their morning juggles, and share exactly what it takes to get them out on that first morning stroll.

FEATURED VIDEO

Mignonne Smith, owner/founder of Mignonne Gavigan

Photographed in Tribeca with son Fielding Thomas Smith, 4 months.

“My biggest challenge in the morning is time management. So much more happens in the morning than I ever could have imagined -- we basically have an entire day together before I head out to work!

Since having Fields, the entire morning has changed -- nothing about it is anywhere near the same as it used to be. I love to sleep, and used to sleep until the very last minute, but with a newborn, sleep is a complete afterthought. Fields sleeps from until about 5:30 or 6:30am, and I work so hard to pack everything in before I leave for work at 9:15am. I cherish the time I have with him in the mornings...seeing that huge smile when I pick him up out of the crib, feeding him, having him hang out with me while I have a very needed cup of coffee, and watching him do some tummy time. Then the nanny comes and I jump in the shower and race out the door.

On the weekends, though, we just chill... there is some serious pajama time, and showers don’t get taken until much later in the day. Maybe some brunch in the neighborhood, definitely a good long stroll and maybe some couch time to wind the day down. These are my favorite times…no plans.”

Mignonne is strolling Fields in the Bugaboo Bee5.

Belle Augusta Savransky, Photographer

Photographed in the East Village with Levon, 1, and Lou, 4 (not pictured: Biet, 6)

“When it comes to my morning routine, I’m still adjusting to the different way that each child wakes up, and working on allowing everyone to have a peaceful, stress-free morning. While my two boys wake up early and are ready for the day immediately, my daughter (much like myself!) needs some time to slowly get into the flow of the day. I find that by getting to bed early, waking up before everyone, and giving myself a half and hour or so to meditate and enjoy my coffee alone before the household rises, I have infinitely more patience to give each child what they need. That little pocket of extra time for myself reflects back on everyone, and gives me the peace of mind to deal with getting our family of five woken, fed, dressed, and out the door.

A little prep work the night before does wonders for our morning routine. Before bed, we all pick out our clothes, jewelry, and shoes for the next day, and lay everything out in a row. Even my one year old excitedly chooses his outfit for the next day, which is the cutest thing. The kids discuss and decide what we’ll have for breakfast, and I get to work packing lunches and prepping the stroller with diapers, wipes, and toys. The mornings run so much more smoothly this way, and we can get out the door and into the city first thing.

After dropping Biet at school, my boys and I like to stroll through either the East or West Village. We’ll swing by the farmer’s market for veggies and hit up a playground or two along the way. The baby usually takes his morning nap while we’re out and about, and I love being able to recline his seat separately from Lou's and pull the shade down to create a little bed for him. Walking the blocks of the city has always been one of my favorite past times, so it’s really special for me to be able to continue to enjoy it even after having kids.”

Belle is strolling the Bugaboo Donkey Duo.

Marisa Zucker, Brand Partnerships at Well Rounded

Photographed in the West Village with Julien, 1 (Not pictured: Sage, 4)

“Getting out of bed is so hard! Before my son was born, and I just had a toddler, I could buy some snooze-time with Sesame Street. Now, my son wakes me with his calls for cereal and Elmo. It's the cutest way to wake up, though. I'll never be that mom who gets up early to work out and get shit done. But I try to be appreciative of these extra hours with the kids, and remember early wake-ups won't last forever.

Mornings usually start with a good amount of snuggling in our bed. I juggle the kids’ breakfasts, then clean up, pour coffee, and pack lunch for my daughter while my husband showers. Coffee and music are essential to getting into a good headspace! The first few months with two kids and no sleep were awful, but thankfully my husband has always been very hands-on in getting my daughter to school. He usually races her to get dressed, to keep things moving, then they’ll leave for school and work together.

The days I’m on double-duty are craziest kind of mornings! I’m lucky if I get a few moments to slap on some sunscreen, lip gloss and my favorite jeans while ushering the kids towards the door. I'll strap the baby into the Bugaboo, where he'll happily watch my daughter put her shoes on, excited that he's going along for the ride. I'm usually up and down the stairs of my stoop a few times, grabbing everything I've forgotten, then off we go. With two kids and lots of stairs to descend, finally hitting the pavement feels like living the urban mama dream!”

Marisa is strolling with the Bugaboo Cameleon3 with the Niark1 special edition tailored fabric set.

Photography by Belle Savransky for Well Rounded. Photos of Belle by Gaby Savransky.

In This Article

    These challenges from Nike PLAYlist are exactly what my child needs to stay active

    Plus a fall family bucket list to keep everyone moving all season long.

    While it's hard to name anything that the pandemic hasn't affected, one thing that is constantly on my mind is how to keep my family active despite spending more time indoors. Normally, this time of year would be spent at dance and gymnastics lessons, meeting up with friends for games and field trips, and long afternoon playdates where we can all let off a little steam. Instead, we find ourselves inside more often than ever before—and facing down a long winter of a lot more of the same.

    I started to search for an outlet that would get my girls moving safely while we social distance, but at first I didn't find a lot of solutions. Online videos either weren't terribly engaging for my active kids, or the messaging wasn't as positive around the power of movement as I would like. Then I found the Nike PLAYlist.

    I always knew that Nike could get me moving, but I was so impressed to discover this simple resource for parents. PLAYlist is an episodic sports show on YouTube that's made for kids and designed to teach them the power of expressing themselves through movement. The enthusiastic kid hosts immediately captured my daughter's attention, and I love how the physical activity is organically incorporated in fun activities without ever being specifically called out as anything other than play. For example, this segment where the kids turn yoga into a game of Paper Scissors Rock? Totally genius. The challenges from #TheReplays even get my husband and me moving more when our daughter turns it into a friendly family competition. (Plus, I love the play-inspired sportswear made just for kids!)

    My daughter loves the simple Shake Ups at the beginning of the episode and is usually hopping off the couch to jump, dance and play within seconds. One of her favorites is this Sock Flinger Shake Up activity from the Nike PLAYlist that's easy for me to get in on too. Even after we've put away the tablet, the show inspires her to create her own challenges throughout the day.

    The best part? The episodes are all under 5 minutes, so they're easy to sprinkle throughout the day whenever we need to work out some wiggles (without adding a lot of screen time to our schedule).

    Whether you're looking for simple alternatives to P.E. and sports or simply need fun ways to help your child burn off energy after a day of socially distanced school, Nike's PLAYlist is a fun, kid-friendly way to get everyone moving.

    Need more movement inspiration for fall? Here are 5 ways my family is getting up and getting active this season:

    1. Go apple picking.

    Truly, it doesn't really feel like fall until we've picked our first apple. (Or had our first bite of apple cider donut!) Need to burn off that extra cinnamon-sugar energy? Declare a quick relay race up the orchard aisle—winner gets first to pick of apples at home.

    To wear: These Printed Training Tights are perfect for when even a casual walk turns into a race (and they help my daughter scurry up a branch for the big apples).

    2. Visit a pumpkin patch.

    We love to pick up a few locally grown pumpkins to decorate or cook with each year. Challenge your child to a "strongman" contest and see who can lift the heaviest pumpkin while you're there.

    To wear: Suit up your little one in comfort with this Baby Full Zip Coverall so you're ready for whatever adventures the day brings.

    3. Have a nature scavenger hunt.

    Scavenger hunts are one of my favorite ways to keep my daughter preoccupied all year long. We love to get outside and search for acorns, leaves and pinecones as part of our homeschool, but it's also just a great way to get her exercising those gross motor skills whenever the wiggles start to build up.

    To wear: It's not truly fall until you break out a hoodie. This cozy Therma Elite Kids Hoodie features a mesh overlay to release heat while your child plays.

    4. Have a touch-football game.

    Tip for parents with very little kids: It doesn't have to last as long as a real football game. 😂 In fact, staging our own mini-games is one of our favorite ways to get everyone up and moving in between quarters during Sunday football, and I promise we all sleep better that night.

    To wear: From impromptu games of tag to running through our favorite trails, these kids' Nike Air Zoom Speed running shoes are made to cover ground all season long.

    5. Create an indoor obstacle course.

    Pretending the floor is lava was just the beginning. See how elaborate your personal course can get, from jumping on the couch to rolling under the coffee table to hopping down the hallway on one foot.

    To wear: These ready-for-any-activity Dri-FIT Tempo Shorts are perfect for crawling, hopping and racing—and cuddling up when it's time to rest.

    This article was sponsored by Nike. Thank you for supporting the brands that supporting Motherly and mamas.

    Our Partners

    A Montessori-inspired gift guide—for newborns to 6-year-olds

    There are plenty of Montessori-friendly toys that are beautiful and engaging, but also appeal to children's developmental needs.

    With so many toys out there, it can be hard to find intentional gifts for our children that are both fun and meaningful. Using a Montessori approach to your shopping doesn't mean your choices need to be academic. There are plenty of Montessori-friendly toys that are beautiful and engaging, but also appeal to children's developmental needs.

    Montessori toys are usually made from natural materials, non-electronic and foster independent play, creativity and concentration. Montessori materials are simple and somewhat minimalist in general, and this is especially true for infants and young toddlers. The world is so stimulating for these little ones already, that simple toys made of natural materials spark the child's curiosity without being overwhelming.

    Keep reading Show less
    Shop

    Mama, all I see is you

    A love letter from your baby.

    Mama,

    I can't see past you right now, I'm so small and everything's a little blurry.

    All I see is you.

    When you feel alone, like the walls are closing in, remember I'm here too. I know your world has changed and the days feel a little lonely. But they aren't lonely for me.

    You are my everything.

    When you feel like you don't know what you're doing, you're making it look easy to me. Even though we're still getting to know each other, you know me better than anyone.

    I trust you.

    Keep reading Show less
    Life