I think it’s worth painting the scene of where I am as I type each character. I’m sitting in Fiji, the curtains are blowing in the breeze and the hum of the white noise is my background while baby girl naps and mama watches the waves and sits in gratitude. I can’t believe I’m writing yet another update, meaning another month with our girl has gone by. Since they all blend together, it’s hard to think of exactly what happened in the last 30 days — thank goodness my camera roll is filled with photos and video evidence, never leaving me hanging.
One thing I’ve learned is that working while being a mom means writing in paragraphs and not pages. Oops, I’m back… because, you know, writing these posts takes a few days if I’m being honest and now I am sitting in Australia, Sydney to be exact, with the same white noise playing and my baby girl sleeping again (she’s a great sleeper) while I come back to continue writing this post… that’s motherhood for ya, right? You just chip away at what you can with the time you’ve got and never drink your coffee while it’s still warm!
We’ve been on the road and in 3 different timezones in the past week and I am blown away by Coco’s resilience and ability to just come on the adventure. Last night we were flying and she slept in my arms, I sipped some champagne and looked down at her long lashes and just gave thanks… like if my arms weren’t asleep and I was capable of lifting them, I would have with straight praise hands because after seasons of loss and waiting, I am fully embracing this season with my baby earth side.
Conley’s personality is blooming and dang is she a funny girl. She loves attention (we better watch out) and will stare at people until they look at her and when they finally do, she gives them her biggest, gummiest smile. She’s babbling a ton, we’re working on Mama but she whispers “da-da-da-da” a lot, so there’s that! She’s an exceptional eater and loves food, specifically scrambled eggs! The cooks in Fiji made her special soft scrambled eggs and she lived for them. She’s also tried just about anything we are eating and so far, she hasn’t found a food she hasn’t liked. It’s so fun to watch her discover and while we miss having the pups at our feet to catch her scraps, she’s really enjoying the whole food thing.
Beyond food, she’s a moving machine. We’ve always got to keep an eye on her because she’s a mover and a shaker. She’s pulling herself up on all the things, crawling around to chase whatever she can find, and doesn’t like to be still! The only time she WILL be still is when we’re reading to her, she has the best attention span and we probably read ten books a day and she will just lounge on back and listen. We’re on the hunt for some new kids books since we only packed four for the trip and have read them on repeat…. I mean, Drew and I can recite “Pete the Cat” if you ever want to see a hidden talent of ours.
Coco loves music and does this hilarious dance move where her arm swings around when it comes on, she’s a big fan of Lizzo and also loved the traditional Fijian music we got to take in. She was a hit when we were in Fiji. Everyone loved her and if we dared walk around without her, people would ask, “Where is Coco?” The Fijians would just come and snatch her and they loved touching her thigh rolls and kissing her feet. She was a ham and loved the attention and it was a beautiful way to connect with a different culture over the love of our blonde hair, blue-eyed baby.
What we’re loving
Since we were preparing to be on the road for 3 weeks, I wanted to share a few of the things we wanted to pack this time around — I mean, we’ve traveled a ton with her, but it’s a whole new ball game with a baby who loves to be up and moving and exploring — especially with an itinerary that includes 12 flights in 3 weeks! So here are a few of our must-haves that we packed along for this grand adventure overseas.
- Guava Travel Crib: This was a bit of a splurge for us BUT since we were going to be in a bunch of different places (including an adults-only resort that didn’t have cribs) we got this to travel with and we LOVE it. I kind of wish we would have never gotten a pack and play and used this for both travel and day-to-day life! We got the extra cover to block light which came in handy when we were in a room without blackout shades and I’m super thrilled with how easy it is to set up and take down and travel with.
- Doona Carseat/Stroller: This was gifted to us months ago but I recommend it to everyone I know that travels with a babe. Eliminates the need to bring a carseat and stroller separately and travels easily. You can also easily push it through the airport and gate check it and it’s really easy to hook into taxi’s — you don’t need a base, so it’s easy peasy! This has been a game changer for travel. (At home we use our UPPAbaby system and we are equally obsessed, it’s just a bit bulkier to travel along!)
- This White Noise: We actually bought two of these and we love them. They are so great for being on the move. We use them on the plane, set them up by her crib, and we personally love them for ourselves as well. Plus they are small and compact so they are easy to bring along. We’re big on sleep these days and switching timezones 4 different times, made us want to give her the best shot for sleeping well!
- The Nested Bean Sleepsack: One of my friends had posted the Nested Bean sack and we were looking to transition her out of her Merlin Sleep Suit and so this seemed like the perfect solution. She actually flew in this sleep suit a lot since our flights were during bedtime and now it’s what she sleeps in every night and she seems to love it! It mimics the feeling of someone’s hand on their chest to provide comfort and it’s simply adorable.
- Our Ergo Carrier: We literally use this every day for hours a day, especially transit days when we need our hands freed up. I don’t know what we would do without it and Coco loves being in it, so it’s a huge win! Plus, I like to pretend it’s my resistance workout, ya know, on those days when my workout is just being a mom and dancing with her in the ergo!
- Primally Pure Baby Oil: We brought our own products along since we are on the road for a few weeks and I’ve found myself snagging this oil at every turn. From cleansing my face after a flight, to moisturizing our hands, to the start of a rash on her bum, or to lather on her skin after a shower. I swear this can be used in a million ways and I find myself using it just as much as she does!
Being a working mama
Oh, this season has been busy but oh-so fun. From preparing to be away from the office for three weeks to the purchase of our new lake house to allll the things, it was definitely a hustle before we hit the road. It definitely felt a little overwhelming at times, mostly because I wanted to really be wrapped up with work so I could enjoy all of our experiences. Truly, though, I love times like that because it makes me yearn for a slow down and reminds me of why I built a business that can run while I rest (thanks to my incredible team!)
The main reason for our trip was to celebrate the launch I did earlier this year with Tony Robbins and Dean Graziosi! The top 10 got to do a mastermind with Dean and Tony in Fiji which was what was behind our whole trip. Since we were traveling so far and had the bandwidth to stretch out this adventure, we decided to hit Australia and New Zealand, too, before heading home. Being at the mastermind was both invigorating and grounding, because it confirmed a lot of the feelings I’m having in this season (mostly just contentedness being a mama and only saying “yes” to things I’m seriously pumped about!) I’ve been prone to be a woman who always wants more, more, more and in this season I feel like the lord and my life is just telling me to sit, be, and relax. That it’s okay to rest! I’m leaning into those feelings and even though I’ve only been working part time, this will be the biggest year for my business, yet.
I feel affirmed that I’ve “earned” this season of taking a step back, not knowing exactly what’s next, and honoring the feelings I’m having about wanting to be a great mama and an awesome CEO. I know that this season will be fleeting and so I’m trying not to put pressure on myself to know exactly what I want to do next or what that will look like — because right now, is everything I’ve ever dreamed of. It’s crazy what I’ve been able to accomplish while full-time nursing my girl and being home with my family. I’ve been working in super fragmented time chunks and have made some integral hires this year to help me be able to step back while the business is still growing. It’s a lot, but it’s a beautiful time.
Last month I did a shoot with Aerie and flew to Pittsburgh to be with their team on location and I was reminded of how proud I am, both of my body, but also to work with such an incredible company. I feel so thankful for every inch of me that made every inch of her and I am loving my different body. While it’s a bit softer and I can’t wait to focus on strengthening it, I am so proud of the miracle that it is. I’ve been enjoying this season that feels in-between where my body still isn’t fully mine and focusing on fueling it so that I can fuel her until we feel it’s time to wean!
One thing I’ve been super excited about is our new Peloton bike that I bought. I really wanted something that would allow me to get in quick workouts that were effective, to cut back on the time commitment of driving to and from the gym, and to have fun again since working out hadn’t been a priority after having Conley. Going from doing a lot of walking and yoga, the bike feels both challenging and fun for me! Before we got married, I did tons of spin classes, so it reignited a passion in me and I’ve been using it 5 days a week (frankly, on vacation, I’m missing it!) Even just jumping on for a 20 minute ride feels like a perfect break and I’m super thrilled that we got one. My favorite instructors are Robin, Ally Love, and Cody!
This month can be summed up by
Newness. Everything around every corner just feels new. I can’t count how many times a day we comment on how big she is or how much has changed. From her growing hair to the way she’s communicating to the bigger sized clothes… everything just feels brand new and beautiful. We are savoring this new life where we plan our days around nap times, eat room service in quiet hotel rooms while she sleeps, and pack a bag of all the things as we adventure out into the world letting her soak in all the sites, sounds, and flavors this world has to offer.