Esther Garfield - Buy Modern Baby
This week's Supermom is Esther Garfield of Buy Modern Baby! Esther has a Master's degree in television production, but self-admittedly rarely watches TV. (She's too busy working on her website and blog!) Esther started Buy Modern Baby in 2006 as a resource for parents to find the best in modern baby and nursery products, followed by Buy Modern Baby the blog in 2010. Her site has been incredibly useful to me with my idea board service and in finding products for my own home. Esther is also mom to two little boys. Read on to learn more about this week's Supermom:
My brother-in-law kept telling me (for years!) that I needed a blog to go with my product guide but I wasn’t convinced. There were so many blogs out there that I already enjoyed reading, but I starting running into so many interesting things that didn’t fit the categories in the guide, so I finally gave in and decided to give blogging a go.It took a few months before I found the blog’s groove but once I realized I had my own unique perspective in the world of kids design, I knew I had a lot to add to the conversation.
My favorite part of being a mom is the interesting talks that I have with my kids. Even before they went out into the wide world of school and friends, it was so interesting to hear their unique thoughts and perspective. I wish I could record all of our conversations.
The toughest thing for me about becoming a mother is just that there’s never a moment where you can just put being a parent on a pause. There’s not a single second where you don’t worry about your children’s well being. Even if I’m in a dead sleep, if they make a peep from their rooms at night, I’m wide-awake and ready to help if they need me. It can be exhausting, but it’s just part of my job and I wouldn’t trade it with anyone!
My philosophy for baby items has always been to use as little as you can get by with and keep it as simple as possible.
These are three things that I love, but if your circumstances and lifestyle are different, they might not work or be necessary for you!
1. When I got home from the hospital, I realized I needed a place to put my baby when I wasn’t holding or wearing him. A simple bouncer like the Baby Bjorn Babysitter does the trick perfectly.
2. Some lovely baby wash, moisturizer and diaper balm like the ones from Mini Organics make me very happy. I love all the Mini Organics products and whenever my baby’s skin had any irritation, I knew I could count on them to gently soothe and bring things back into balance. And they all smell perfectly wonderful. I love using them for myself as well!3. This one is going to sound strange, but all the little baby clothes stressed me out. You get so many cute little things, either as gifts or you buy things yourself, but then you have this crazy wardrobe with tiny clothes in all kinds of sizes. I was always worried that I’d miss things or forget to put the boys into certain outfits until they had grown out of them, so closet dividers were a must-have for me. I had to keep all those cute little things organized.
1. Before you know it, your little ones are sitting up on their own and trying solid food. Our Ikea Antilop with the additional tray served us perfectly for both our boys.
2. Now I know these aren’t as eco-friendly as I prefer to be, but for eating out with a toddler, especially those who are still eating off the high chair tray at home, there’s nothing like having a pack of Table Toppers in your diaper bag. These make eating out a little more hygienic and you can leave the table without having made too terrible of a mess. I particularly liked the designs that had a road on them. Bring a toy car as well, and you’ve got an activity while you wait for your food.3. The perfect nightlight is essential at our house. Hopefully your toddler won’t particularly NEED a nightlight, but both my boys have gone through stages where they don’t want their rooms completely dark (like right now). Even if they don’t need it, it doesn’t hurt to have a little illumination in the room for when you go check on them. We have a Mobi TykeLight, but I also like OXO Tot lights and Boon’s Glo.
Can I say a cook, a housekeeper and a great babysitter? Heheh—unfortunately I have none of the above.
But really, sometimes there are a few products that help it all go more smoothly.
1. iPhone. I don’t know how I got through nursing my first child in the pre-iPhone era. It was so much easier the second time around when I could sit and read news and twitter and even blog posts using just one hand wherever and whenever. Even getting up in the middle of the night is easier if you have twitter to keep you company.
2. Spanx. These LITERALLY help things go more “smoothly.” Get it? I know there are a few of you that put on your old jeans back on a couple weeks after the baby arrives, but I’m pretty sure that most of us need a little extra help. I particularly like the High-Waisted Shapers. They’ve got the maximum amount of shaping without impeding on nursing.3. Slow Cooker. To make mealtime go smoothly, you really can’t beat a slow cooker. Put a meal together during naptime and at dinner time, it’s ready to just serve. The food is cooked and soft enough to mash up for babies and if you make enough, you’ve got leftover lunch done for the next day as well. I really need to use our slow cooker more often! We have the 7-quart Crock-Pot from Costco and I’m happy with it but don’t have anything else to compare it to.
I don’t. Lol! Once the kids are in bed, I leave the dishes in the sink and the pile of papers on my desk and I blog. Also, I don’t watch TV anymore. I prefer surfing the web and interacting online. The rest of the time I just do my best.
There are as many different moms out there as there are people. You don’t have to do what you think everyone else is doing, you just have to be the best mom that the person you are can be. And you don’t have to be the same mom for every child you have. Each child is different and will require different things of you.
I’m sure it’s cliché, but MY mom is a supermom. She can still take care of me like no one else. When she’s here, she looks after my boys, does the gardening, makes dinner, and I’m pretty sure she stays up long after I’ve gone to bed to clean up... well, you know... all that stuff I left undone while I was busy at the computer!
Thanks to Esther for your thoughts and advice! I can definitely relate to never putting being a parent on pause. That's been the most difficult thing for me to adjust to as well. But you're right - I wouldn't trade it for anything! See more of Esther over on her blog, Buy Modern Baby.