Surviving the Holidays Pregnant

5 wellness tips that will help mamas-to-be make it through the holidays.

Surviving the Holidays Pregnant

The holidays, though full of cheer, love and celebration, can be a very stressful time for many. It's important to listen to your body -- always, but especially when you're pregnant -- and take time for yourself so that the stress doesn't catch up to you.

Here are some easy tips to help you survive the holidays when you're pregnant:

  1. Travel smartly. If you're planning to travel in any capacity, it's important to stay comfortable throughout the journey. When packing, be sure to include a variety of preferred snacks (especially healthy ones for pregnancy!) in case there are travel delays or you feel your blood sugar dropping. Also, be sure to dress comfortably to allow for extended period of sitting or standing. Compression socks (we love these ones from Vim & Vigr) may be a good snag during this time.
  2. Sit down! When attending holiday parties, be sure to find a few minutes every 30-45 minutes to sit down. It's important to rest your feet so that you prevent additional foot soreness you may already feel from the pregnancy itself. You'll be surprised at the relief you feel with just 60 seconds of resting your feet. If you can, rub some Mama Mio Lucky Legs cooling gel on your feet when you return to home base -- your feet will appreciate it!
  3. Eat before you party. When it comes to food at holiday parties, it's hard to always eat healthy. If you're able to, try to eat a mini-meal of approximately 200-250 calories beforehand so that you're not famished and gravitating to the heavy dips etc and instead noshing at a slower pace. Many times, overeating where the feeling of your eyes are bigger than your stomach can lead to gas, indigestion or discomfort. This will help minimize those sensations.
  4. Stay active! It's hard to prioritize a workout during the busy holiday season, however, even a 15-minute jolt around the block or light stretching on a yoga mat can help rejuvenate you during all the hustle bustle. Try to focus on short, efficient ways to incorporate physical activity into your day.
  5. Meditate. Feeling overwhelmed and stressed with all the family drama? Take a few minutes to yourself and try to meditate or clear your mind. There are a variety of meditation podcasts including a free version on Headspace to help you cool off and relax. It's important to continue the positive vibes during this time!

Here's wishing you a safe, healthy and happy holiday!

Image source.

Rarely is a woman more concerned with what her body needs than when she's pregnant. We start to question and research everything, right? From swearing off turkey sandwiches to diving down the rabbit hole of prenatal supplements that make up what we lack, the stress of overthinking is real, mama.

One of the main reasons we launched the Motherly Shop is to help take some of that stress away. We've tracked down the best brands and products developed by people (and in many cases, women!) that truly work to serve the needs of real mamas, especially throughout the overwhelming transition into motherhood.

That's why we knew we had to introduce mamas-to-be to the science-backed and expertly-formulated protein collagen for pregnancy from Needed. And as one of our bestsellers, it's clear you've been looking for it, too.

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I never wanted to be a mom. It wasn't something I ever thought would happen until I fell madly in love with my husband—who knew very well he wanted children. While he was a natural at entertaining our nephews or our friends' kids, I would awkwardly try to interact with them, not really knowing what to say or do.

Our first pregnancy was a surprise, a much-wanted one but also a unicorn, "first try" kind of pregnancy. As my belly grew bigger, so did my insecurities. How do you even mom when you never saw motherhood in your future? I focused all my uncertainties on coming up with a plan for the delivery of my baby—which proved to be a terrible idea when my dreamed-of unmedicated vaginal birth turned into an emergency C-section. I couldn't even start motherhood the way I wanted, I thought. And that feeling happened again when I couldn't breastfeed and instead had to pump and bottle-feed. And once more, when all the stress from things not going my way turned into debilitating postpartum anxiety that left me not really enjoying my brand new baby.

As my baby grew, slowly so did my confidence that I could do this. When he would tumble to the ground while learning how to walk and only my hugs could calm him, I felt invincible. But on the nights he wouldn't sleep—whether because he was going through a regression, a leap, a teeth eruption or just a full moon—I would break down in tears to my husband telling him that he was a better parent than me.

Then I found out I was pregnant again, and that this time it was twins. I panicked. I really cannot do two babies at the same time. I kept repeating that to myself (and to my poor husband) at every single appointment we had because I was just terrified. He, of course, thought I could absolutely do it, and he got me through a very hard pregnancy.

When the twins were born at full term and just as big as singleton babies, I still felt inadequate, despite the monumental effort I had made to grow these healthy babies and go through a repeat C-section to make sure they were both okay. I still felt my skin crawl when they cried and thought, What if I can't calm them down? I still turned to my husband for diaper changes because I wasn't a good enough mom for twins.

My husband reminded me (and still does) that I am exactly what my babies need. That I am enough. A phrase that has now become my mantra, both in motherhood and beyond, because as my husband likes to say, I'm the queen of selling myself short on everything.

So when my babies start crying, I tell myself that I am enough to calm them down.

When my toddler has a tantrum, I remind myself that I am enough to get through to him.

When I go out with the three kids by myself and start sweating about everything that could go wrong (poop explosions times three), I remind myself that I am enough to handle it all, even with a little humor.

And then one day I found this bracelet. Initially, I thought how cheesy it'd be to wear a reminder like this on my wrist, but I bought it anyway because something about it was calling my name. I'm so glad I did because since day one I haven't stopped wearing it.

Every time I look down, there it is, shining back at me. I am enough.

I Am Enough bracelet 

SONTAKEY  I Am Enough Bracelet

May this Oath Bracelet be your reminder that you are perfect just the way you are. That you are enough for your children, you are enough for your friends & family, you are enough for everything that you do. You are enough, mama <3


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The 6 biggest lies I believed before having kids

Just about all of us had set assumptions about raising kids before we became parents ourselves.

Just about all of us had set assumptions about raising kids before we became parents ourselves. Some of these ideas might have been based on our own ideas of how we would absolutely do things differently than everyone else. Others, we believed what everyone else told us would happen would apply to our littles, too. But, that's not always the case, mama.

Below are six of the biggest lies I believed before having kids—and the reality of what actually happened for me.

1. Put your baby down drowsy, but awake

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