If you’re anything like us, you were super excited when you found out that chic wedding blog 100 Layer Cake was launching a family blog, 100 Layer Cakelet. And when we found out one of their editors, Junia Montaño, was pregnant, we had to know more about her turning her beautiful family from two into three. Junia, due July 24th, also just so happens to be a friend of my fiancé’s from back in their San Francisco days. While we have only met through the powers that are social media, she’s one of those people I wish lived close enough to set up playdates with. You’ll feel the same after reading more about her. How has pregnancy been treating you? It’s been really great. Now that my nine months is almost up, I've made sure to slow down and enjoy these last few weeks of being pregnant. Random strangers have actually helped me with this. It seems like everywhere I go now, people want to chat with me, ask me when I'm due, if we have names picked out, etc. It's nice! Are you finding out the sex of your baby? Yes. It's a girl! We actually didn't want to find out for the longest time, but as the months went by we needed it to sink in that yes, we were actually going to have a baby. Finding out made it more real for us. How does being in your field inspire baby purchasing or nursery decisions? My husband is a graphic designer, and I look at pretty weddings all day, so we both have an eye for modern decor and colors. We know for sure that we didn't want to buy things that were baby pastel pink or had cheesy images, words and phrases like "princess," "daddy's little girl," etc. on them. We're more attracted to the organic, cleanly designed, muted or neutral-colored products that we feel also complement what we already have in our apartment. We're also not into having a lot of baby stuff around (who knows, that could change), so we're going to try to keep things minimal. That being said, we decided not to dedicate our second room, which I use as my office, as the nursery. So where will the little one sleep? We want to keep her close to us, so she'll be sleeping in our bedroom. Plus, I work from home, so keeping the second room as an office is key for the time being. How are you approaching maternity style? I told myself I didn't want to buy maternity clothes so that I could wear anything new that I bought well after the pregnancy. So far it's worked! I use the pregnancy as an excuse to buy and wear more dresses, which is something I didn't really wear before but quickly found out was so much more comfortable than wearing jeans with the belly band. How is being pregnant in L.A. unique? The heat is definitely the unique (and challenging) part of being pregnant in Los Angeles. Even before becoming pregnant, I'd swell up when the temps got high, and now my fingers and toes balloon up to plump little sausages even quicker. Sadly, the warmer temps and being pregnant at the same time has made it so I no longer fit into any of my cute shoes and sandals. I've had to resort to flip flops and a comfy pair of Nike’s. Any fears of becoming a mama? You know, I don't really have any fears (yet). My husband and I have talked about having kids for so long that all I'm feeling is pure excitement to meet this little one. I should also thank the childbirth prep classes we've taken. They've helped me prepare mentally for different situations and I am hoping to enter the labor and birth of our little one feeling empowered. If I did have to pick one thing though, I'm worried about how our two cats will take to our new family member. Any tips to make the transition easy, please share! What are you most excited about? New adventures! My husband and I have known each other for 17 years and have done practically everything together. We're both ecstatic to become a team of three and experience life all over again through her eyes. Even the most mundane activity, like staying at home to veg and watch TV, will be that much more exciting, and we can't wait. We imagine we'll spend a lot of time just staring at her in amazement that we created her. Photo of Junia in polk-a-dot jumper by Scott Clark. All other photos provided by Junia.
Having a newborn is challenging at the best of times, but during forced isolation and in a climate of fear and uncertainty, it can become overwhelming.
The coronavirus pandemic is setting up our communities for genuine mental health concerns. This may be especially true for new parents. When will 'normal' life return? How will I pay for diapers and baby food? Will my mom be able to help us now? What if my baby or my family get COVID-19? Unfortunately, no one knows the long-term impact or answers just yet.
Most families have built a network of social support by the time they have their first child—if they don't already have a support system, they develop one through various baby classes and groups set up for parents. The creation of the village can be instrumental to the mental health of new parents. Social distancing, the lockdown of cities, and isolation will inadvertently affect the type of support available.