MotherMadelinewith baby Beau

What was your childhood like?
My childhood was playful and cozy. Filled with good music, delicious food and lots of family time. I have a million memories of laughing with family and doing weird, silly things with my big brother whom I was obsessed with. From him dragging me around the house by my feet (which I loved, because he was my hero), to rolling on the floor laughing at something no one else would understand, we were partners in crime. With that said, we also knew exactly how to get under each other’s skin. Lastly, I can’t sugar coat the truth, which is the fact that I was absolutely notorious for being a little sh*t.

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What were some of your favorite memories as a child?
My brother and I used to play practical jokes on each other all the time. We’d hide weird plastic toys in each other’s beds so they’d tickle our feet and freak us out as we curled up for a cozy night’s sleep. We would take the time to make fresh squeezed orange juice, press flowers, take family hikes (which I would usually refuse to go on), spend every single weekend at our cabin A-frame on Candlewood lake (there was never any other option), and lounge around a lot. I also have vivid memories of my parents singing Beatles and Talking Heads songs to us in the car. Those were some of my favorite moments…

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What about your teenage years?
I was moody. Actually, moody is an incredible understatement. Gosh. Sorry Mom + Dad. I was seriously horrific. I remember never giving my parents the satisfaction of telling them how wonderful they were or how much I appreciated all they did for me. Karma. Oh karma. I am scared of you.

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Do you have a mother role model you look up to in your life?
My Mother. In addition to being my everything, she is the most reliable human being in my life. Jordan is my other half, of course, however, my Mom is my ultimate home base in a different sense. When I lean into her and feel her skin on me or smell her hair, I am home and I feel safe and calm. When I am sick I still want my Mommy. Is that weird?

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What makes them your role model?
My Mom helps people for a living and not only is she incredible at what she does, but she finds such joy in doing it. I never wanted her advice growing up, and now I don’t know what I would do without it. Also, her devotion to her own Mother is something I have always admired.

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When was the moment that you decided that you wanted to become a mother?
I always knew. It was just always there for me. I could never imagine not being a Mom.

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The moment you found out you were pregnant- what were your feelings? Where were you?
I knew I was pregnant before taking the test. I could just feel it and it was a very normal feeling for me. I was in St. John with my family when my instinct told me something exciting was going on and we were home in our then Bridgeport loft when it was confirmed. Jordan and I were together when I took the pregnancy test. We laughed and cried and said “holy shit” a lot. haha.

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How has life changed for you since becoming a mother?
I have had to relinquish a lot of control. I feel more deeply. I marvel at the little things. I pause, when I can remember, to say out loud, “this life is beautiful and I am so grateful.” I can’t remember who I was or what I used to do. I can’t imagine a life without Beau.

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What has been the biggest change for you after becoming a mother (both good and bad)?
The good is that I feel I have a more meaningful purpose. Jordan and I are having the time of our lives. The bad is that I trail off into day dreams about what I “should have” done with my free time before baby. I hate the phrase “should have”. I have to remind myself that I had the freedom to do whatever I wanted and I chose to do what felt right at that time.

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What was the biggest surprise to you about having a child?
We were completely surprised by how difficult having a child was. Before the birth, we would turn to each other as say, “are you nervous? I’m not. I feel like we should be, but we got this…” It’s a good thing we were clueless. We were also surprised by how much Beau cried. Breastfeeding was a great challenge too. We thought newborns were supposed to sleep, eat and poop. That’s it. Well, we quickly learned.

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Did you do anything to prepare yourself before having a baby?
We are homebodies and so making our home comfortable and lovely was at the top of our list. We made changes around the house to make it just the way we wanted. It felt like we were preparing for a Prince. We wanted everything to be beautiful and comfortable for our babe. From wallpapering and a new bathroom, to fresh linens and cozy layette. We also went on dates and visited with friends and family, knowing that we’d be consumed after Beau’s arrival.

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Did the aesthetic of your home change after you had kids?
Not so much. It’s always been very important to us that we raise our children in our environment that feels true to who we are. We got the foam corners… but those only lasted a day. We taught Beau how to navigate carefully and work around the things that already existed in our home. Sharp corners and all. (is that bad parenting?) That’s not to say we haven’t had to put gates up, use outlet plugs, and move things out of the way. He is a bruiser. When Beau was 8 months old we moved from an open airy loft in Bridgeport to a quant, charming antique colonial / farm house in Sandy Hook. That aspect of our home environment has changed drastically.

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What is it about your child that you want to remember at this very moment?
The surprise space between his teeth that cracks we up every time he smiles. The way it feels when he nurses and leans into me. The little curls on the back of his head after a bath. The way he raises his eyebrows when he’s trying to engage you. The sound he makes out of his mouth when he’s “smelling” a flower.

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What it is that you want them to remember you?
I want him to remember how playful we are. We’re always making weird noises and down on the floor chasing him around. I would love for him to remember how much family time we have and how much his Dad and I love lounging around, reading books, and taking walks together.

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How was your relationship with your husband before your baby?
Fun, lazy, luxurious and comfortable. We ate out quite a bit and socialized all the time with our local besties. We jet-setted when we felt like it and each had many respective projects going at any given time.

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How is it post baby?
Fun. Not lazy. Not luxurious. We have tapped into a different version of ourselves and found a new joy in being home with Beau a lot and taking lots of walks down Zoar Rd. That’s our special thing together. There are some sweet horses and donkeys along our road who we’ve come to adore. We also eat at home most of the time, which has been wonderful for us. Cooking meals at home has been very rewarding and has provided a healthy lifestyle change.

What do you guys miss about being just the two of you?
Going out to dine and taking long weekends with friends. Sitting through a long meal and eating slowly. Having too many drinks and sleeping in. Before beau we would wake up on a Saturday morning and start the day with.. “What should we do today?!” We had no limits. We still do that, but our options are different. I won’t say limited :)

What do you love now with the 3 of you?
Being in our pajamas on a Sunday morning and then taking a walk down Zoar Rd with winter hats on. Having NO plans is our favorite. Jordan has always had a fantasy of our child coming downstairs in his PJ’s with messy hair and sleepy eyes as we prepared a family waffle breakfast. Soon that will be Beau. It seems like our trend is being cozy, eating yummy food, and staying home.

What is the best / most useful advice you have received about being a mother?
Just keep the kid alive and you’ve done your job. No really, that made me feel much better haha! Also, not to over analyze every phase of development and that things will ultimately even out.

How are you different / similar to your own mother?
I like to think that I am the calm in Beau’s life as my Mother is in mine. He is a very rambunctious little boy with calm moments. I like to weave peaceful, serene moments into his day as to remind him that downtime is just as fun as wild and crazy time. I think it’s important for him to have a balance. I’m not sure he agrees just yet. I am different from my Mother in that I have not gone back to work in the traditional sense.

What are some of your favorite things about Beau?
His sense of humor is ridiculous. He is headstrong and incredibly smart. Sometimes that makes for a very difficult day… but I am so proud of him, even when he’s difficult. I love how determined he is, like his Dad. He won’t give up until he’s finished a ‘project’. I love the little curls in his hair around his ears. Maybe that’s because I have the same ones. I love how observant he is and how much he loves Mimi and Eloise. He won’t pass them by without a cuddle.

What is the story behind Beau’s name?
We wanted something completely new and fresh. My ONE requirement was that his name not be confusing, hard to pronounce or spell. Oops. Last week at the pediatrician’s office they called out, “Bee-you”. He is such a Beau. We couldn’t imagine him with any other name now.

How do you balance Motherhood and work?
I don’t. Still learning. <3

What is love to you?
Laughing. Eating. Feeling like time is floating. Getting that lump in my throat that is pure joy and sadness that time is fleeting, all at once.

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