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Morning Musings: Nicole Ryan

Get up early with everyone’s favorite (pregnant) radio personality.

Morning Musings: Nicole Ryan

We partnered with NYDJ to share how a great pair of maternity jeans is a morning must-have for any mama who’s going places. Made by women, for women, NYDJ understands our bodies…especially during pregnancy.

There are some mamas you feel like you know without ever meeting them, and Nicole Ryan is one of them. As host of The SiriusXM Hits1 Morning Mashup, she’s with you when you wake up for that early morning feed, and again when you sit down for that first, very necessary cup of coffee. She’s there to make you laugh or smile after a hard night of sleep-training or a particularly rough bout of pregnancy anxiety. She was your mom friend before you were a mom, or possibly before she was.

Since she’s been such a big part of so many of our mornings for so long, we were curious to see what her morning looks like. Especially now that she’s pregnant with baby number two. And guess what we found out on a very early visit to her NYC home? She’s just as normal as you hoped she’d be, from hitting the snooze button to get some more pregnancy ZZZZs, to rotating the same three pairs of cozy and chic NYDJ maternity jeans every day, to giving Katy Perry her breastfeeding play-by-play. Well, maybe not that last part. But just like the rest of us, this talented mama is working her heart out to make a better life for her daughter Parker (2.5) and her baby boy on the way.

Get a glimpse into Nicole’s morning, and find out how this superstar DJ and working mama gets it all done.

5:25 - Alarm rings. Since I’ve been pregnant, I set my alarm a little earlier so I can snooze a few more times, because getting up has gotten more difficult as the months have gone on.

5:50 - Shower.

6:00 - Beautify, and get dressed, usually in a T-shirt and one of my three pairs of NYDJ jeans, which have been part of my go-to uniform because they might be the softest, coziest things that have ever touched my body. I love that NYDJ makes me not only look great but feel great. It definitely helps wearing jeans that make me feel confident to take on my day!

6:05 - If Parker wakes up, I grab her and throw her in bed with Daddy, and maybe even hop in for a quick cuddle!

6:10 - Get Parker a yogurt or cereal and a drink. My morning routine hasn’t really changed that much since Parker came into our lives since (knock on wood!) she has been an amazing sleeper since birth. That, coupled with me leaving before the sun comes up, means I don’t always see her. If I do, we snuggle in bed for a little, and then juggle grabbing her breakfast and playing in between showering and literally running out the door. NYDJ provides the support and comfort I need so I don’t have to spend time worry about my outfit and I can give my full attention to Parker when we’re playing.

6:15 - Pack my bag, say goodbyes and fly out the door and into a cab. My favorite part of the morning is the group hug Parker insists on before I walk out the door – my husband Matt, myself, Parker and Leo must all embrace before I leave, and my day doesn’t feel complete without it.

Matt is on Daddy duty until our amazing nanny Emi comes at 7:30 and takes over. He’s the most unbelievably hands-on father and has wildly exceeded my expectations of how a working father should be with their kids. He is her everything, and we are all very lucky to have him!

6:35-640 – Grab my coffee from my fave coffee guy and get into the studio to begin prepping. Being a parent definitely impacts my work. I’m always struggling to balance staying young and relevant to my audience and not fall into total “Mommy Mode.” Being a mom can consume your life, and our show is not about being a mom… it’s funny, it’s games, it’s celebrity gossip. It’s supposed to be light, so I have to really work to switch gears once I get there.

It definitely bonds me with my guests, though. People love pregnant woman! Lady GaGa was obsessed with touching my belly when I interviewed her. Katy Perry wanted a play-by-play of me breastfeeding when I broadcasted while Parker was eating and she was the guest. And, of course, pregnancy has its perks: no one has ever said no to talking to me on the Red Carpet because, well, who says no to a pregnant woman!?

7:00 – We go live! It’s hard being a working mom. But I hope Parker learns that this is a choice I’ve made. Working helps me be a better mom. I’m also blessed to have the ability to have such a flexible schedule, so I am home in the afternoons and get to spend tons of time with her – time that a lot of working moms aren’t afforded.

I also want Parker to know that being a working mom makes me feel strong. This job was a huge part of my identity before her, and having her did not mean I needed to give it up. It meant I need to work that much harder to make it all work and I do, and each day I'm proud of that. I also work very hard to help give her an incredible life and to make money to try and give her the world...because she deserves it.

Check out NYDJ's maternity collection and get 15% off with code BABY15 at NYDJ.com. (Offer expires 10/16/16).

Photography by Amy Frances for Well Rounded NY.

14 sweet 'just thinking of you' gifts for every mama

A sweet surprise that tells her you've been thinking of her might be the pick-me-up she needs.

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.

$70

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.

$65

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.

$45

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!

$23

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.

$30

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.

$39

'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."

$35

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.

$24

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.

$22

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!

$25

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.

$32

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.

$105

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.

$17

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.

$68

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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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This viral post about the 4th trimester is exactly what new mamas need right now

"We are alone. Together. You are surrounded all the other mothers who are navigating this tender time in isolation. You are held by all of us who have walked the path before you and who know how much you must be hurting. You are wrapped in the warm embrace of mama earth, as she too settles into this time of slowness and healing."

Artist and teacher Catie Atkinson at Spirit y Sol recently shared a beautiful drawing of a new mom crying on a couch—leaking breasts, newborn baby, pile of laundry and what we can only assume is cold coffee, included. Everything about the image is so real and raw to me—from the soft stomach to the nursing bra and the juxtaposition of the happy wallpaper to the palpable vulnerability of the mother—I can almost feel the couch underneath me. I can feel the exhaustion deep in this woman's bones.

My heart feels the ache of loneliness right alongside hers. Because I remember. I remember the confusion and uncertainty and love and messy beauty of the fourth trimester so well. After all, it's etched in our minds and bodies forever.

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