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17 simple + beautiful holiday gift ideas for the minimalist mama

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Sometimes, less really is more. We've found 15 of the best gifts where style truly meets function this holiday season that we're sure the minimalist mama will treasure.

WANT

1. MISSHA The Original Tension Pact, Frida Kahlo Edition

Light foundation + wrinkle care + skin brightening + UV protection all in one stunningly beautiful little package. Add a little blush, mascara, and lip gloss and you're good to go.

The Original Tension Pack, Amazon, $20.62

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2. Artifact Uprising Wooden Photo Ledge

We love the clean lines and modern feel of this walnut wood photo ledge. We also love that you can quickly and easily swap out photos, making it simple to keep everything up to date.

Wooden Photo Ledge, Artifact Uprising, $49.00

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3. Lo & Sons Catalina Weekender Bag

Nothing warms our minimalist hearts more than an item that's simple, stylish + efficient. This weekend travel bag has a perfectly-sized compartment for all of your stuff, is spacious yet lightweight, comfy to carry and folds down teeny tiny when not in use. Swoon.

Catalina Weekender Bag, Lo & Sons, $120.00

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4. Lorena Canals Basket

The first step to a minimalist lifestyle is getting rid of all of the clutter, but the reality is there will still be lots of 'things' you'll need to find a home for. We love the look and feel of this natural basket. It's not too big so it won't get in the way, but you'll be able to fill it up with toys, blankets or those cords you keep losing.

Basket Zoco Vintage Natural, Lorena Canals, $65.00

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5. Roku Ultra HD

Cut that cable cord, mama! Roku makes it easy with simple setup, brilliant picture quality and access to endless streaming content.

Roku Ultra HD, Amazon, $104.48

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NEED

6. Olli Ella Reva Changing Basket

Nursery furniture does not have to look like nursery furniture. This handmade seagrass basket does double duty as a changing station when baby is young and then can be used for... just about anything else afterwards.

Reva Changing Basket, Olli Ella, $70.00

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7. Kindle Paperwhite

Don't get us wrong—we LOVE actual books. But we also love curating our shelf space, saving some trees and being able to hide our love for YA romance. Kindle for the win! Bonus: Add on an unlimited membership plan.

Kindle Paperwhite E-Reader, Amazon, $129.99

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8. Rothy's

The perfect pair of loafers to take mama from drop-off to date night. They're incredibly comfy, machine-washable and made from recycled plastic bottles. We 💜them.

Rothy's Loafer, Rothy's, $165.00

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9. Le Creuset Signature Dutch Oven

No kitchen should be without this piece of cookware. While it's splurge, this classic dutch ovens are epitome of style + function—beautiful, superior heat distribution and retention, easy to clean and unbelievably useful.

Le Creuset Signature Dutch Oven, Amazon, $329.95

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10. Stowaway 'Be Polished During Playdates' Makeup Set

This pint-sized pouch packs a big punch. Brighten up your day—and your face—with this mascara + blush + lip gloss set that fits neatly into any bag, big or small.

Be Polished During Playdates Set, Stowaway, $29.00

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WEAR

11. Tilden Gift Card

Curated, fashion-forward clothing that flatters you before, during, and after pregnancy? Yes, please. View the same look on models both pregnant and not to see how the fit will change with you. Brilliant!

Tilden Gift Card, Tilden, whatever price you choose!

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12. Sonnet James Reese Dress

A classic, simple piece of clothing that you can dress up or down is the key to the minimalist's wardrobe. We love the easy, versatile fit of this dress and that it looks great during a morning at the farmer's market with kids in tow or on any given work day.

Stripped Reese Dress, Sonnet James, $158.00

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13. Sole Society Oversized Blanket Scarf

Adding a scarf is the perfect way to turn a simple outfit into a standoff. This one's soft, cozy and perfect for the chilly winter days ahead.

Sole Society Oversized Blanket Scarf, Nordstrom, $39.95

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14. Anthropologie Issoria Drop Earrings

Jewelry is another great way to dress up—or down—any outfit. These versatile earrings compliment just about anything and will quickly become one of your go-to's.

Issoria Drop Earrings, Anthropologie, $30.40

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READ

15. Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up

Ever wish decluttering guru Marie Kondo could come to your house and show you how to tidy up? This illustrated guide walks you through her step-by-step instructions. We feel calmer and more organized already.

Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up, Amazon, $13.29

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16. Texture Subscription

Texture provides an all-access digital pass to top magazines, no paper required. Unlimited access allows you to totally customize your content and also includes back issues—all at your fingertips.

Texture App, all app stores, $9.99/month

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17. The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own

"Live a better life with less." Enough said.

The More of Less: Finding the Life You Want Under Everything You Own, Amazon, $12.23

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If there's one thing you learn as a new mama, it's that routine is your friend. Routine keeps your world spinning, even when you're trucking along on less than four hours of sleep. Routine fends off tantrums by making sure bellies are always full and errands aren't run when everyone's patience is wearing thin. And routine means naps are taken when they're supposed to, helping everyone get through the day with needed breaks.

The only problem? Life doesn't always go perfectly with the routine. When my daughter was born, I realized quickly that, while her naps were the key to a successful (and nearly tear-free!) day, living my life according to her nap schedule wasn't always possible. There were groceries to fetch, dry cleaning to pick up, and―if I wanted to maintain any kind of social life―lunch dates with friends to enjoy.

Which is why the Ergobaby Metro Compact City Stroller was such a life-saver. While I loved that it was just 14 pounds (perfect for hoisting up the stairs to the subway or in the park) and folds down small enough to fit in an airplane overhead compartment (you know, when I'm brave enough to travel again!), the real genius of this pint-sized powerhouse is that it doesn't skimp on comfort.

Nearly every surface your baby touches is padded with plush cushions to provide side and lumbar support to everything from their sweet head to their tiny tush―it has 40% more padding than other compact strollers. When nap time rolls around, I could simply switch the seat to its reclined position with an adjustable leg rest to create an instant cozy nest for my little one.

There's even a large UV 50 sun canopy to throw a little shade on those sleepy eyes. And my baby wasn't the only one benefiting from the comfortable design― the Metro is the only stroller certified "back healthy" by the AGR of Germany, meaning mamas get a much-needed break too.

I also appreciate how the Metro fits comfortably into my life. The sleek profile fits through narrow store aisles as easily as it slides up to a table when I'm able to meet a pal for brunch. Plus, the spring suspension means the tires absorb any bumps along our way―helping baby stay asleep no matter where life takes us. When it's time to take my daughter out, it folds easily with one hand and has an ergonomic carry handle to travel anywhere we want to go.

Life will probably never be as predictable as I'd like, but at least with our Metro stroller, I know my child will be cradled with care no matter what crosses our path.

This article is sponsored by Ergobaby. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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It's been more than a year since Khloé Kardashian welcomed her daughter True Thompson into the world, and like a lot of new moms, Khloé didn't just learn how to to be a mom this year, she also learned how to co-parent with someone who is no longer her partner. According to the Pew Research Center, co-parenting and the likelihood that a child will spend part of their childhood living with just one parent is on the rise.

There was a ton of media attention on Khloé's relationship with True's father Tristan Thompson in her early days of motherhood, and in a new interview on the podcast "Divorce Sucks!," Khloé explained that co-parenting with someone you have a complicated relationship with isn't always easy, but when she looks at True she knows it's worth it.

"For me, Tristan and I broke up not too long ago so it's really raw," Khloé tells divorce attorney Laura Wasser on the podcast. She explains that even though it does "suck" at times, she's committed to having a good relationship with her ex because she doesn't want True to pick up on any negative energy, even at her young age.

That's why she invited Tristan to True's recent first birthday bash, even though she knew True wouldn't remember that party. "I know she's going to want to look back at all of her childhood memories like we all do," Khloé explained. "I know her dad is a great person, and I know how much he loves her and cares about her, so I want him to be there."

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We totally get why being around Tristan is hard for Khloé, but it sounds like she's approaching co-parenting with a positive attitude that will benefit True in the long run. Studies have found that shared parenting is good for kids and that former couples who have "ongoing personal and emotional involvement with their former spouse" are more likely to rate their co-parenting relationship positively.

Khloé says her relationship with Tristan right now is "civilized," and hopefully it can get even better with time. As Suzanne Hayes noted in her six guiding principles for a co-parenting relationship, there's no magic bullet for moving past the painful feelings that come when a relationship ends and into a healthy co-parenting relationship, but treating your ex with respect and (non-romantic) love is a good place to start. Hayes describes it as "human-to-human, parent-to-parent, we-share-amazing-children-and-always-will love."

It's a great place to start, and it sounds like Khloé has already figured that out.

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Kim Kardashian West welcomed her fourth child into the world. The expectancy and arrival of this boy (her second child from surrogacy) has garnered much attention.

In a surrogacy pregnancy, a woman carries a pregnancy for another family and then after giving birth she relinquishes her rights of the child.

On her website, Kim wrote that she had medical complications with her previous pregnancy leading her to this decision. “I have always been really honest about my struggles with pregnancy. Preeclampsia and placenta accreta are high-risk conditions, so when I wanted to have a third baby, doctors said that it wasn't safe for my—or the baby's—health to carry on my own."

While the experience was challenging for her, “The connection with our baby came instantly and it's as if she was with us the whole time. Having a gestational carrier was so special for us and she made our dreams of expanding our family come true. We are so excited to finally welcome home our baby girl."

A Snapchat video hinted that Kim may have planned to breastfeed her third child. What she chooses to do is of course none of our business. But is has raised the very interesting question, “Wait, can you breastfeed when you use a surrogate?"

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The answer is yes, you sure can! (And you can when you adopt a baby, too!)

When a women is pregnant, she begins a process called lactogenesis in which her body prepares itself to start making milk. This usually starts around the twenty week mark of pregnancy (half way through). Then, when the baby is born, the second phase of lactogenesis occurs, and milk actually starts to fill the breasts.

All of this occurs in response to hormones. When women do not carry a pregnancy, but wish to breastfeed, they can induce lactation, where they replicate the same hormonal process that happens during pregnancy.

A woman who wants to induce lactation can work with a doctor or midwife, and start taking the hormones estrogen and progesterone (which grow breast tissue)—often in the form of birth control pills—along with a medication called domperidone (which increases milk production).

Several weeks before the baby will be born, the woman stops taking the birth control pill but continues to take the domperidone to simulate the hormonal changes that would happen in a pregnancy. She'll also start pumping multiple times per day, and will likely add herbal supplements, like fenugreek and blessed thistle.

Women can also try to induce lactation without the hormones, by using pumping and herbs, it may be harder but some women feel more comfortable with that route.

Inducing lactation takes a lot of dedication—but then again, so does everything related to be a mama. It's a super personal decision, and not right for everyone.

The important thing to remember is that we need to support women and mothers through their entire journey, no matter what decisions they make about themselves and their families—whether Kardashian or the rest of us.

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