We love how honest Bachelorette turned blogger Ali Fedotowsky-Manno is about motherhood, and how real she is whenever she talks to us here at Motherly.
It has been a whirlwind three years for Fedotowsky-Manno, who welcomed her oldest, daughter Molly, in July 2016 and son Riley in May 2018, and she says parenting looks a whole lot different when you're doing it for the second time.
For example, Molly's babyhood was a bit cleaner than Riley's, because Big Sister definitely got more bath time back when mom and dad only had one baby to deal with. "We've always given Molly a bath every day ever since she was a couple months old, which probably wasn't even a good thing at the beginning. But it was just part of her nap time routine. We worked with a sleep coach. She said it was important to have the same routine every night," Ali tells Motherly.
"But with Riley my son, the poor kid, probably for the first six months of his life, until we could put him in the big tub with Molly, he probably got a bath once a week," she explains. "We'd always say he was the dirtiest stinkiest baby ever, because he barely ever got a bath. But we were just always so busy. Like it was so hard!"
Shifting from one baby to two is really hard and we love how Ali doesn't sugar coat that. It's a difficult transition, but she proves that it does get easier, mama.
Now that Riley is approaching a year old, Ali and her husband Kevin have the bathing system down, and Riley is getting more tub time. "It's like put Molly in the bath and then dunk Riley, wash him real quick, take him out. Now they both get baths every night. So as soon as you can get them in the same bath together, I recommend doing it," Ali explains.
Tub time is not the only challenge that comes with adding another child to the family. For Ali, Riley's arrival has also meant her diaper bag has grown as she's now toting supplies for two little ones (Molly is in that tricky potty-training spot where you're toting extra clothes everywhere, too).
So her diaper bag now has outfits for two, changing supplies for Riley, snacks, teething crackers, water cups and a pack of Puffs Plus Lotion tissues (Ali partners with that brand, she's a big fan of those ones), because a mama of two has to be prepared for hunger, thirst and messes times two at all times. "And then I usually always have a toy for each kid in my bag too when we're out and about," Ali explains.
The bag is bigger, the household is busier, and things are different for Riley than they were for Molly, but that's okay.
"Like I pumped very little when I had Molly. But now with Riley, I can't nurse him because Molly's singing Moana at the top of her lungs across the room. So I'm distracted," Ali explains. "So I pump almost exclusively, because otherwise I can't get a good nursing session in. I only nurse him in the morning when he first wakes up, or if he wakes up in the middle of the night."
Being a mom x2 is different than parenting a solo child. But just because your second kiddo isn't getting as many baths doesn't mean they aren't getting as much love. A little dirt is good for kids anyway.
Thanks for keeping it real, Ali!
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