A modern lifestyle brand redefining motherhood

Anything and everything little ones could ever want (or need, or wear, or read!) to celebrate their first holiday season in style.


WANT

1. Plum + Sparrow Moses Basket
We’ve been swooning over these one-of-a-kind handwoven, sustainably-made, and absolutely gorgeous Moses baskets all year. They provide baby with a safe place to sleep and add a touch of beauty to any space.

2. Cheengoo Organic Crocheted Veggie Rattles
It’s never too early to start that farmer’s market obsession! We love these organic, hand-crocheted rattles that are perfect for little hands and can then be used as pretend-play toys for toddlers, too.

3. Oli & Carol Origami Boat Teether + Tub Toy
The perfect teething and bath toy for the coolest baby around. Handmade from natural latex hand painted with safe, natural food grade dyes.

4. Ouististine Small Wool Teddy Bear
Sweet, simple, and beautiful—what more could you ask for? The perfect snuggle-worthy companion to pass down through generations.

NEED

5. LexyPexy Leo Teether
Your babe will be the coolest teether in town with these wooden shades, and you’ll feel good about the all-natural, sustainable maple which is naturally antibacterial and non-splintering. Win, win!

6. Clover and Birch Wooden Play Gym
A simple, sturdy play gym that also looks awesome in your living room? Check ✔ Etsy wins again with this solid pine handmade beauty that will entertain your little one for hours.

7. DockATot Baby Lounger
The multi-functional, multi-cute, and must-have piece of baby gear of 2017. Perfect for lounging, tummy time, supervised sleep, playing, and so much more.

8. BabyBjorn Bouncer Bliss
Give your arms a (much-needed) rest while baby bounces away. We ? this bouncer for its minimalist design, amazing portability—it folds completely flat and weighs only 5 lbs—and four adjustable positions. And as your kiddo ages, it turns into a seat!

WEAR

9. Winter Water Factory Romper
These trendy Brooklyn-based unisex rompers are newborn wardrobe staples. Made with organic cotton, they’re warm, comfy, versatile, and beautiful.

10. Copper Pearl Holiday Bib Set, Noel
Drool in style this holiday season! These baby bandana bibs are some of the softest and most absorbent around and will add the perfect amount of holiday cheer to any celebration.

11. Freshly Picked Moccs
Dress up your babe’s holiday style with these soft, durable moccs. They’re super cute and come on and off easily—and won’t fall off like some others we’ve tried.

12. Petite Soul Bonnet
These whimsical, sweet vintage-inspired bonnets will make you want to post about 55 photos of your little one on Instagram this holiday season. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

READ

13. Littles: And How They Grow
“A love song to babies and how quickly they grow.” Yup, we’re already crying.

14. Wee Gallery Art Cards for Baby
The simple, bold black and white images will capture the developing eyesight of even the tiniest of babies. These make a great stocking stuffer!

15. Petit Collage Wooden Stroller Book
Sturdy, easy to turn pages and bright, bold illustrations make this book perfect for the littlest of readers, and the cotton strap secures it to strollers, car seats, or wherever your little one needs her reading fix!

16. The Binderie Organic Cloth Books
These hand stitched cloth books are truly a work of art! Order early; quantities are limited.

Motherly is your daily #momlife manual; we are here to help you easily find the best, most beautiful products for your life that actually work. We share what we love—and we may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

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Summer heat has a way of making the house feel smaller, more congested, with less room for the air to circulate. And there's nothing like heat to make me want to strip down, cool off and lighten my load. So, motivation in three digits, now that school is back in, it's time to do a purge.

Forget the spring clean—who has time for that? Those last few months of the school year are busier than the first. And summer's warm weather entices our family outdoors on the weekends which doesn't leave much time for re-organizing.

So, I seize the opportunity when my kids are back in school to enter my zone.

I love throwing open every closet and cupboard door, pulling out anything and everything that doesn't fit our bodies or our lives. Each joyless item purged peels off another oppressive layer of "not me" or "not us."

Stuff can obscure what really makes us feel light, capable and competent. Stuff can stem the flow of what makes our lives work.

With my kids back in school, I am energized, motivated by the thought that I have the space to be in my head with no interruptions. No refereeing. No snacks. No naps… I am tossing. I am folding. I am stacking. I am organizing. I don't worry about having to stop. The neat-freak in me is having a field day.

Passing bedroom doors, ajar and flashing their naughty bits of chaos at me, is more than I can handle in terms of temptation. I have to be careful, though, because I can get on a roll. Taking to my kids' rooms I tread carefully, always aware that what I think is junk can actually be their treasure.

But I usually have a good sense for what has been abandoned or invisible in plain sight for the lack of movement or the accumulation of dust. Anything that fits the description gets relegated to a box in the garage where it is on standby in case its absence is noticed and a meltdown has ensued so the crisis can be averted. Either way, it's a victory.

Oh, it's quiet. So, so quiet. And I can think it through…

Do we really need all this stuff?

Will my son really notice if I toss all this stuff?

Will my daughter be heartbroken if I donate all this stuff?

Will I really miss this dress I wore three years ago that barely fit my waist then and had me holding in my tummy all night, and that I for sure cannot zip today?

Can we live without it all? All. This. Stuff?

For me, the fall purge always gets me wondering, where in the world does all this stuff come from? So with the beginning of the school year upon us, I vow to create a new mindset to evaluate everything that enters my home from now on, so there will be so much less stuff.

I vow to really think about objects before they enter my home…

…to evaluate what is really useful,

...to consider when it would be useful,

...to imagine where it would be useful,

...to remember why it may be useful,

…to decide how to use it in more than one way,

... so that all this stuff won't get in the way of what really matters—time and attention for my kids and our lives as a new year reveals more layers of the real stuff—what my kids are made of.

Bring it on.

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In the moments after we give birth, we desperately want to hear our baby cry. In the middle of the night a few months later it's no longer exactly music to our ears, but those cries aren't just telling us that baby needs a night feeding: They're also giving us a hint at what our children may sound like as kindergarteners, and adults.

New research published in the journal Biology Letters suggests the pitch of a 4-month-old's cry predicts the pitch they'll use to ask for more cookies at age five and maybe even later on as adults.

The study saw 2 to 5-month olds recorded while crying. Five years later, the researchers hit record again and chatted with the now speaking children. Their findings, combined with previous work on the subject, suggest it's possible to figure out what a baby's voice will sound like later in life, and that the pitch of our adult voices may be traceable back to the time we spend in utero. Further studies are needed, but scientists are very interested in how factors before birth can impact decades later.

"In utero, you have a lot of different things that can alter and impact your life — not only as a baby, but also at an adult stage," one of the authors of the study, Nicolas Mathevon, told the New York Times.

The New York Times also spoke with Carolyn Hodges, an assistant professor of anthropology at Boston University who was not involved in the study. According to Hodges, while voice pitch may not seem like a big deal, it impacts how we perceive people in very real ways.

Voice pitch is a factor in how attractive we think people are, how trustworthy. But why we find certain pitches more or less appealing isn't known. "There aren't many studies that address these questions, so that makes this research especially intriguing," Hodges said, adding that it "suggests that individual differences in voice pitch may have their origins very, very early in development."

So the pitch of that midnight cry may have been determined months ago, and it may determine part of your child's future, too. There are still so many things we don't know, but as parents we do know one thing: Our babies cries (as much as we don't want to hear them all the time) really are something special.

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For many years, Serena Williams seemed as perfect as a person could be. But now, Serena is a mom. She's imperfect and she's being honest about that and we're so grateful.

On the cover of TIME, Williams owns her imperfection, and in doing so, she gives mothers around the world permission to be as real as she is being.

"Nothing about me right now is perfect," she told TIME. "But I'm perfectly Serena."

The interview sheds light on Williams' recovery from her traumatic birth experience, and how her mental health has been impacted by the challenges she's faced in going from a medical emergency to new motherhood and back to the tennis court all within one year.

"Some days, I cry. I'm really sad. I've had meltdowns. It's been a really tough 11 months," she said.

It would have been easy for Williams to keep her struggles to herself over the last year. She didn't have to tell the world about her life-threatening birth experience, her decision to stop breastfeeding, her maternal mental health, how she missed her daughter's first steps, or any of it. But she did share these experiences, and in doing so she started incredibly powerful conversations on a national stage.

After Serena lost at Wimbledon this summer, she told the mothers watching around the world that she was playing for them. "And I tried," she said through tears. "I look forward to continuing to be back out here and doing what I do best."

In the TIME cover story, what happened before that match, where Williams lost to Angelique Kerber was revealed. TIME reports that Williams checked her phone about 10 minutes before the match, and learned, via Instagram, that the man convicted of fatally shooting her sister Yetunde Price, in 2003 is out on parole.

"I couldn't shake it out of my mind," Serena says. "It was hard because all I think about is her kids," she says. She was playing for all the mothers out there, but she had a specific mother on her mind during that historic match.

Williams' performance at Wimbledon wasn't perfect, and neither is she, as she clearly states on the cover of time. But motherhood isn't perfect either. It's okay to admit that. Thanks, Serena, for showing us how.

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There are some mornings where I wake up and I'm ready for the day. My alarm goes off and I pop out of bed and hum along as I make breakfast before my son wakes up. But then there are days where I just want 10 more minutes to sleep in. Or breakfast feels impossible to make because all our time has run out. Or I just feel overwhelmed and unprepared.

Those are the mornings I stare at the fridge and think, Can someone else just make breakfast, please?

Enter: make-ahead breakfasts. We spoke to the geniuses at Pinterest and they shared their top 10 pins all around this beautiful, planned-ahead treat. Here they are.

(You're welcome, future self.)

1. Make-ahead breakfast enchiladas

www.pinterest.com

Created by Bellyful

I'd make these for dinner, too.

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