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Postpartum Bliss

A Mama Moon after baby is just what the doctor ordered.

Postpartum Bliss

Just one glorious day aaalll about you. Sounds like perfection right about now doesn’t it, new mama? Learning to be the perfect diaper-changing, baby-soothing, breast-feeding goddess is harder than Instagram made it appear. Exhausting even. We get it. But taking care of you is just as important as taking care of baby. Because a happy and healthy mom is exactly what baby needs. This is where the Mama Moon comes into play. Earlier this week, we showed you how one New York mama-to-be spent her last days of pregnancy indulging in some me-time at Equinox’s luxe East 74th Street location, and it made us drool with bump (and time!) envy. But then we remembered that we mamas could do that too. Sure, it might not be an endless day of spa and yoga, but sometimes as a mama, all it takes is knowing that baby is in good hands at a place like Equinox’s Kid’s Club, and the ability to take a shower without baby tears on the other side, to make you feel human again. Mama Moons are highly encouraged post-baby. On a very regular basis. Especially when it involves getting those endorphins on the up and up. With a schedule filled to the brim, no one knows what we’re talking about more than new mama, spin enthusiast and founder of Terez, Zara Terez Tisch. We recently caught up with her during her own lovely Mama Moon at the Equinox High Line, which with their latest cycling class experience, The Pursuit, was the perfect place to find out how this spin enthusiast is getting back into the workout saddle. Why is taking time for own health and fitness so important? Between being a new mom and running a company, I can get exhausted pretty easily. I have found that working out not only makes me feel good but also energizes both my mind and body so that I am able and happy to do all the things I need to do. What are some of your favorite things to do at the gym? Spinning is by far my favorite thing to do. How are you navigating taking time for yourself now that baby has arrived? It isn't easy. My calendar has become my life and I want to make sure that I get as much time with my baby as possible. As everyone has told me, these moments go by so fast, so I try to make sure to have time carved out everyday that I get to spend just with her. Tell us about your perfect afternoon (or hour) to yourself. Because my mind is constantly churning, I love to try to turn it off and give it a break. I live in the West Village, so it's always fun for me to walk to the Highline and then drop into Equinox for a sweat. I’d end my afternoon cuddled up on the couch watching the newest movie that came out. A lot of women get nervous about hitting the gym after baby -- what advice would you give women to help them get back into it? I'm not going to lie, I was pretty scared. After months of not stepping foot inside a gym, the thought of getting back into it frightened me. It's kind of like jumping into a cold pool -- you are so nervous and then you finally just JUMP! It's refreshing! You just need to do it at your own pace. If you are taking a class, don't feel pressured to keep up with the rest of the room. You know your body, so all you have to do is listen to it. How does working out help you balance being a mom and entrepreneur? Working out helps gives me "me time." In order to be a great mom and entrepreneur, I need to be the best version of ME. Working out has allowed me to take time for myself with no distractions. Photography by Evan Gubernick of 485 Creative. *We are so grateful when brands support our content and community. This post was sponsored by Equinox. Join Equinox for an exclusive offer now!

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After 4 kids, this is still the best baby gear item I’ve ever purchased

I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work.

I have four kids 8 and under, so you might expect that my house is teeming with baby gear and kid toys.

But it turns out that for me, the more kids I have, the more I simplify our stuff. At this point, I'm down to the absolute essentials, the gear that I can't live without and the toys my kids actually play with. And so when a mama-to-be asks me what things are worth registering for, there are only a few must-haves on my list.

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer seat is on the top of my list—totally worth it and an absolute must-have for any new mama.

In fact, since I first splurged on my first BABYBJÖRN bouncer eight years ago (it definitely felt like a splurge at the time, but the five star reviews were really compelling), the bouncer seat has become the most-used product in our house for baby's first year.

We've actually invested in a second one so that we didn't have to keep moving ours from the bedroom to the living room when we change locations.

BABYBJÖRN bouncer bliss

baby bjorn bouncer

The utility of the seat might seem counterintuitive—it has no mechanical parts, so your baby is instead gently bounced by her own movements. In a world where many baby products are touted for their ability to mechanically rock baby to sleep, I get that many moms might not find the "no-motion" bouncer that compelling. But it turns out that the seat is quite reactive to baby's little kicks, and it has helped my kids to learn how to self-soothe.

$200

Lightweight + compact:

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer is super lightweight, and it also folds flat in a second. Because of those features, we've frequently stored it under the couch, in a suitcase or in the back of the car. It folds completely flat, which I love.

Entertainment zone:

Is the toy bar worth it? The toy bar is totally worth it. Not only is the toy bar adorable, but it's one of the first toys that my babies actually play with once they discover the world beyond my boobs. The toys spin and are close to eye level so they have frequently kept my baby entertained while I cook or take a quick shower.

Great style:

This is not a small detail to me–the BABYBJÖRN bouncer is seriously stylish. I am done with baby gear and toys that make my house look like a theme park. The elegant European design honestly just looks good in my living room and I appreciate that parents can enjoy it as much as baby.

It's adjustable:

With three height settings that let you prop baby up to be entertained, or lay back to rest, we get years of use. And the bouncer can actually be adjusted for bigger kids and used from newborn to toddler age. It's that good.

It just works:

I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work. But I have used the seat as a safe space to put baby while I've worked (I once rocked my baby in it with my foot while I reported on a breaking news story for the Washington Post), and as a cozy spot for my second child to lay while his big brother played nearby. It's held up for almost a decade with almost-constant use.

So for me, looking back on what I thought was a splurge eight years ago, was actually one of the best investments in baby gear I ever made.

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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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Becoming a mother has been life-changing. It's been hard, tiring, gratifying, beautiful, challenging, scary and a thousand other things that only a parent would ever understand.

It is these life-changing experiences that have inspired me to draw my everyday life as a stay at home mom. Whether it's the mundane tasks like doing laundry or the exciting moments of James', my baby boy's, first steps, I want to put it down on paper so that I can better cherish these fleeting moments that are often overlooked.

Being a stay-at-home-mom can be incredibly lonely. I like to think that by drawing life's simple moments, I can connect with other mothers and help them feel less alone. By doing this, I feel less alone, too. It's a win-win situation and I have been able to connect with many lovely parents and fellow parent-illustrators through my Instagram account.

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