When a “Boy Mom” Has A Girl on the Way

Boston’s fave Insta-Mom gets personal.

When a “Boy Mom” Has A Girl on the Way

Name: Anna Maria @anja_mari

Neighborhood: Southshore Boston

Occupation: Digital Marketing Communications

Children: 2 + 1 on the way

Gender: girl

How would you describe your pregnancy style?

Free, effortless and comfortable. I have never spent much time doing my hair or choosing corresponding wardrobe elements -- that is just not me. I have always picked items that go with “my flow,” and I am trying to do the same during pregnancy. I don’t like putting labels on things, and I don’t like stereotypes but it seems like a pregnancy style has a little bit of an inflexible stereotype attached. Everyone has an idea of what a pregnant woman should look like or wear, as if there was some rigid structure to it, and that is something I am trying to escape from, play around and just not fully conform to.


What is one pregnancy ritual you’ve built into your routine?

Taking the time to really pamper my skin. This third pregnancy takes a toll on my skin, especially around my belly and hips, things tend to stretch a lot, and I feel like skin elasticity is sparse this time around. So I am using oils and special belly creams to really do what I can to save whatever is left (hahaha) -- something I wasn’t the best at during my two other pregnancies.


What’s your favorite pregnancy product that you cannot live without?

A good belly band, a good pregnancy undershirt (with these two, you can rework almost every pre-pregnancy outfit into a pregnancy outfit!). Also some decent compression stockings (tired legs at night will thank you!).

What will you miss most about being pregnant once the baby arrives?

I think the connection to another life, the feeling of being two in one, and the little moves in earlier weeks -- from little “hellos” to well-defined and sometimes painful kicks (“oh hey you, stop stretching in there”). It is an unbelievable wonder of a female body, to be able to contain all this and create life within itself, it blows my mind every time, and I think the mystery of it all, will be always the magic and wonder I will miss the most.

What’s one piece of pregnancy advice every mama to be needs to know?

Don’t be scared of your body changing; it knows what it is doing. Trust your gut carrying the baby and then having the baby. Nobody has all the answers to motherhood -- we all make them up as we go and do what is right for us. It has been designed this way for thousands of years, so you will be fine -- just give into the process instead of trying to control it too much or worry yourself unnecessarily.

What are you looking forward to the most about having a baby girl?

Finally be able to peek into the other side of the baby section clothing! Girl section is always so much bigger (LOL!). But seriously, I am looking forward to learning more about myself through raising a little girl. I think it is a self-discovery of sorts… what I want her to know and remember, what kind of a woman I want to help her be, what kind of mistakes I think I have done and could help her avoid. I think that is the difference between having boys and girls: with a girl you get a little closer to understanding how your sex is wired, and figure it out better or at least more naturally.

What’s your top registry essentials?

1. Infinite number of baby onesies -- simple and necessary, 100%cotton, machine washable, you will use them as many as diapers a day.

2. A good car seat, like the Cybex Cloud Q, which is designed to last up to 18 months!

3. Hospital bag essentials from Francis and Henry.

Anja is wearing:

First photo:

Camel coat (similar).

Second photo:

Grey coat (similar).

Third photo:

There is rightfully a lot of emphasis on preparing for the arrival of a new baby. The clothes! The nursery furniture! The gear! But, the thing about a baby registry is, well, your kids will keep on growing. Before you know it, they'll have new needs—and you'll probably have to foot the bill for the products yourself.

Thankfully, you don't have to break the bank when shopping for toddler products. Here are our favorite high-quality, budget-friendly finds to help with everything from meal time to bath time for the toddler set.

Comforts Fruit Crisps Variety Pack

Comforts fruit snacks

If there is one thing to know about toddlers, it is this: They love snacks. Keeping a variety on hand is easy when the pack already comes that way! Plus, we sure do appreciate that freeze-dried fruit is a healthier alternative to fruit snacks.

Comforts Electrolyte Drink

Comforts electrolyte drink

Between running (or toddling!) around all day and potentially developing a pickier palate, many toddlers can use a bit of extra help with replenishing their electrolytes—especially after they've experienced a tummy bug. We suggest keeping an electrolyte drink on hand.

Comforts Training Pants

Comforts training pants

When the time comes to start potty training, it sure helps to have some training pants on hand. If they didn't make it to the potty in time, these can help them learn their body's cues.

Comforts Nite Pants

comforts nite pants

Even when your toddler gets the hang of using the toilet during the day, nighttime training typically takes several months longer than day-time training. In the meantime, nite pants will still help them feel like the growing, big kid they are.

Comforts Baby Lotion

comforts baby lotion

Running, jumping, playing in sand, splashing in water—the daily life of a toddler can definitely irritate their skin! Help put a protective barrier between their delicate skin and the things they come into contact with every day with nourishing lotion.

Another great tip? Shopping the Comforts line on to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices—and follow along on social media to see product releases and news at @comfortsforbaby.

This article was sponsored by The Kroger Co. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.


Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!


Detective set

Plan Toys detective setDetective Set

This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.


Wooden doll stroller

Janod wooden doll strollerWooden Doll Stroller

Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.


Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.


Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.


Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.


Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.


Wooden rocking pegasus

plan toys wooden rocking pegasus

Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.


Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.


Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.


Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.


Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.


Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.


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