Having “It ALL”

August 31, 2017

It’s confusing a little bit, this idea of having it all. There seems to be this pressure to have “it all,” but no real understanding about what “it all” actually is.

When I decided to get back to my business I really struggled. I had big dreams for my business, and I had big dreams about staying home with my babe. I felt conflicted most of the time.

Every day felt kind of like a shit show. The babe and puppy run wild, then everyone eats, then I clean up and the puppy baby tag team nap while I try to do absolutely everything else. While nap times are aaaaaaamazing 😉 it’s tricky trying to cram laundry, showers, meal prep, and all things business into 3 hours a day.

I felt like I never got anything done, which was so frustrating. I finally realized that I was just trying to do way too much, and that I was chasing some fictional idea of “having it all.” I needed to really redefine what “having it all” meant to me. 

When I took a step back and evaluated my version of having it all, I definitely realized I was chasing something other than what I actually wanted. I also realized that there were definitely things that I had to let go, which became a lot easier when I got clear on my top priorities.

My version of having it all definitely includes the blending of my mom hat and my entrepreneur hat – but I had to change up my vision, let go of some control and get nice and comfy with things being messy and imperfect (yikes!).

We all have our own versions of having it all, and what ever that vision is is exactly right. The key is to get clear on it, be willing to let things go and step into the beautiful, imperfect mess!

Emily xo



When your toddler drops the f-bomb…

August 30, 2017

My advice for when your toddler drops the f-bomb multiple times while at story time:

Step 1 – smile politely

Step 2 – respond to the judgmental looks with a pleasant “mind your effing business”

Step 3 – keep doing what you’re doing

We’re all doing our best here. Some of us have a little bit more colorful language at home than others. I get that it may not be socially acceptable for kids to run around dropping f-bombs at the library, but don’t we have bigger things to worry about?

At least he used it in the right context…as far as I’m concerned, that’s a win!

Emily xo

Learning the Rules of Parenting

June 6, 2017

Last week at the dentist, the hygienist was asking about my baby boy. I love talking about him because I think he’s amazing, but I was keeping my answers short and sweet – I wanted to get down to teeth cleaning business.

Trying to have a conversation while having my teeth cleaned is on my current top 10 list of least favorite things.

Luckily, she was loving sharing about her 6-month old grandson. Kids are cool and a lot of fun to talk about. We all have these baby geniuses who are absolutely amazing 🙂 I get it.

She said something though that really struck me – parents these days have so many rules. She was explaining that she didn’t want to watch her grandson at first because of all the rules, worrying that she’d do something wrong. She went on to talk about how different things used to be and how she just doesn’t agree with some of the rules today.

I have heard this sooooooo many times – it too is on my current top 10 list of least favorite things.

I just sat  there and let her do her teeth cleaning thing, but I actually had A LOT I wanted to say. Yes, the rules of the game are a little different – thanks to all the lessons learned – but why, instead of learning the new rules, do so many people want to take themselves out of the game?

I still consider myself a very new mom – 16 months in and I still don’t actually know what I’m doing. There is so much to learn, so many choices to make, and as soon as I think we’ve got something down – everything changes.

On top of that, everyone seems to have an opinion about everything. I’m not kidding you. From the grocery store clerk to my mother- in- law  and everyone in between, there is no shortage of someone having something to say.

Maybe I’m a little sensitive on this topic, but I want to stick up for myself and all the other new moms out there. This first time parent gig is hard and pretty scary.  We’re responsible for a tiny human who we absolutely adore and are surrounded by really intense information all of the time.

There is so much pressure to teach and to protect and to nourish IN THE RIGHT WAY. This makes it  hard to hear your own inner voice telling you what that means.

I stopped participating in some of the “mom support groups” early on because it was too much listening to all the things these moms were doing in an effort to be good moms. Plus, I knew that these things just weren’t’ me.

I remember time and time again moms talking about the intense things they were doing in order to nurse their kiddos exclusively. Power pumping and being exhausted only to ultimately donate their extra breastmilk that they had stored.

So much crazy making work which was making a tough transition even harder. It really highlights that we’re all trying to learn and follow all the new rules too. It’s intense and it kind of feels like there is someone lurking behind every corner waiting to judge us or tell us that we’re crazy or doing it wrong or effing up somehow.

We need to stack our team with people who have done this before, who can show us lots of love, empathy and understanding AND who will help us to find our way. Our intuition is there, but our voice is constantly being challenged. We need supportive people who help us feel confident in who we are and how we’re doing this mom thing.

This is not a competition. It’s not about who is right or who is wrong. It’s about figuring out how to be the best moms we can be, and the only way to do that is with a lot of TLC.

Emily xox

One of My First Promises Was a Lie

May 13, 2017

“I won’t ever let anything hurt you.”  This was one of my first promises to my son, and it was a lie.

The lie wasn’t intentional. I truly wanted to protect him from any and all pain, until I realized that was an impossible task and I had to change my promise.

As a mom, it’s natural to want to protect our kids from any and all pain.  Pain hurts and we don’t want the people that we love to hurt.  In our minds we think pain is bad. That pain will break us or prevent us from being happy.

The truth is, pain is a part of life. It comes in many forms, but it comes no matter what, and it’s not up to us to block it.  Even when we try, there are so many times there is nothing that we can do.

I know this for myself, but watching it with my baby is so hard.

Last week during his 15 month check up they drew blood and it was so very painful for him.  On Monday he tripped and face planted on the window seat and got his first bloody fat lip. Yesterday he waved and said hello to kids at the store and they walked away from him.

We’ve had a long list of other stings and he’s survived them all. Honestly, he’s shown a lot of resilience. There is a part of me that wants to wrap him in bubble wrap or tell people to eff off…and lets be real, some days that part will get the best of me, but I’m trying hard to remember that is not my job.

My job as his mom is to love him fiercely, and to help him see his strength and his courage.  If I transport him away from the pain, that won’t happen – he will doubt himself, he will believe pain is bad and feeling sadness and fear is wrong. He will second guess his actions and stop being who he is at the core.

He deserves to be exactly who he is meant be. My job is to support him in being that person. Navigating pain and knowing that he will be okay, that he will survive – even if he gets some bumps and bruises – that is where his confidence will come from.

I want him to know that true happiness in life comes from going into the pain and coming out stronger on the other side. I want him to know that it’s okay to be afraid, that he should listen to the message fear is sending and then decide what to do.  That he doesn’t have to always run from scary or hurtful things (sometimes yes, but not always – he needs to know the difference). I want him to know that vulnerability and feeling feelings is what makes up the beauty of the human experience, and that he is an amazing human exactly as he is.

I want him to trust himself, to fight for what he believes in and to always do what he thinks is right.

This means that sometimes he might feel pain and that’s okay. I trust that he will be okay. Actually, I know he will be, I know that he will be stronger and better because of it.

My new promise to him is that I will do my very best to show up strong with him. I will stand beside him and support him in being exactly who he is. I will do my best to be there for him, even though there are so many things that I can’t fix or stop from happening. I will love him and do my best to lead by example.

The truth is, I know this will be messy. I have a temper and am driven by emotion…so there are days when heads will roll. Other days I’ll be able to take that step back and handle things all calm, cool and collected.

I will always want to protect my baby boy – he’s my heart, living outside of my body – but I know that it is so important to let him learn how to be the strongest, bravest version of himself and the only way to do that is to fully go into life, pain and all.

Phew! This parenting thing is intense. Every day there is so much to learn, so much new to navigate.  Good news is –  we are all in this together, doing our best in any given moment – hoping to not totally lose our $h!t – and just taking it one day at a time.

Emily xox


Biggest Struggle, Greatest Strength

April 24, 2017

This morning I was listening to the Oprah & Deepak 21 Day meditation – Day 11 to be exact.

The meditation was about peace being our greatest strength, and that our biggest struggle leads to our greatest strength.

As I was laying there, breathing in and out, focusing on the mantra and the grounding thought what kept coming to mind was that my struggle with unexplained infertility led to my strength as a mom.

That struggle forced me to learn how to be vulnerable – to open up, be honest and ask for help.  It taught me to accept that I am imperfect and that things mostly don’t go as planned. It taught me how to trust myself more and to worry less about what everyone else was doing and saying.

I learned how to love in a way that feels like my heart is always fully exposed – it feels really scary, and raw, but also like the only way to live.

There is so much that I am uncertain about. I know that I don’t walk around with an all encompassing inner peace on a daily basis.  But I do walk around knowing that I am strong. I love my son unconditionally and I am a good mom.

Even when I do things imperfectly, even when things feel hard, even when I am beyond tired. I know that my commitment to do my best and to love fiercely is enough.  I don’t have to do anything to prove it, to force it or to fake it.

The 7 years of struggle, of pain, of persistent effort even when the statics were not on our side – I dug in deep and stayed the course – not always gracefully, but I knew deep down that I was meant to be his mom. I didn’t know how or when but I knew in my heart that it was meant to be.

That paved the path for now. Now I get to express that love, to live in it. And I love that it gets to be messy. I love that there is no pressure to be perfect. I love that we all get to show up each day and simply do our very best – whatever that may mean that day.

This was an especially good way to start the day since today my little peanut is working on 4 teeth. He’s miserable, we’re both a mess and the house is a disaster – but whatever!  I know that all I have to do is show up and love him like crazy today. When that’s my focus, everything else seems a little bit easier and a lot less important.

Emily xox

All in a Days Work ;)

April 18, 2017

This morning I woke up at 6:30am. I did the Oprah & Deepak meditation, I journaled for a bit. It was a peaceful start to my day.

I was really optimistic for the rest of my day. “Yes!” I thought, “I’m going to get so much done today.”

When I have a morning that starts off exactly as I would love my morning to start off – I totally assume that the rest of my day will fall into this beautiful alignment.

But then I remember I have a toddler and an 8 month old Bullmastiff puppy, and I am a stay at home/ work from home mom. Which essentially means the rest of my day will be a giant shit show, with much of it spent as my tiny humans snack bitch.

(Seriously, he is like a bottomless pit. We spend hours every day eating. I don’t understand).

Another chunk of my day is spent chasing the dog, trying to remove from her mouth whatever non food item she has found.  Clothes, toys, mulch, remotes, shoes, kitchen chair legs – it’s all fair game to her.

I do get a 2-3 hour break during nap time – ya know, when I eat, do laundry, check email, write and work to build my very own business empire 🙂

All in a days work, right?!

At the end of the day I’m wiped and I am always wondering wtf I even did?!

But then I remember I did a lot. A lot of things got my attention…even if a lot didn’t get done.

Overwhelm comes from trying to do too much, and from not acknowledging what we do.

As moms, we so often put our attention to everything outside of ourselves. We down play things. We compare ourselves to other moms who we think are doing way more than us.

When what we really need to be doing is having a glass of wine and giving ourselves a freaking high five – acknowledging that we rocked the day.


Emily xox


Do it Today!

April 4, 2017

I remember when my daughter was a newborn, thinking that once the cold weather broke, we would spend our days getting things done as a team: visiting friends and family, running errands, perhaps stopping for a coffee or bite for lunch.

Yeah, about that.

Life, and more specifically feeling like a productive member of society, with young children is tough. As a mother of one 10-month-old, I sometimes feel like I get nothing accomplished in a days time. Trying to get any errand squeezed in between bottles, meals and naps leaves pretty much 40 minutes to accomplish one burning task. A typical errand run includes dashing out of the house, grocery shopping like I am a contestant on the 90’s game show “Super Market Sweep,” then flying home (sometimes playing Notorious B.I.G. so that my babe will not fall asleep in the car) just in time to get her to nap in her crib. I have yet to achieve a successful carseat-to-crib nap transition, so any car shut eye means I either keep driving or forgo afternoon peace of my house (aka time to fold laundry and cook dinner). I just never really thought my days would pass so quickly. I relish how filled with snuggles and stories our days are and appreciate the real privilege of getting the be the one home with our little one, shaping her heart and her mind – but sometimes I long to go to Target then Costco in one outting and not throw off the whole day’s schedule.

And then one day I got some much needed perspective.

My husband and I were over the moon to learn we were expecting and would soon give our daughter the best gift parents can give – a sibling and lifelong friend.

And as thrilled as I was, I suddenly thought of all the logistics that being parents of two children would bring. Almost overnight, I thought about how I really ought to be relishing my days with just one baby and how easy life right now will seem once our next child arrives.

The universality of this lesson was not lost on me – perhaps one day we will be fortunate enough to welcome additional children, and likely I will look back on having just one or two kids and think “why did I feel overwhelmed then” and shake my head and my younger, less-wise, self.

Since gaining this perspective, the logistics of getting out the door with an infant have not changed. The amount I ‘accomplish’ in a day also has not changed. But, we sure are having more fun and are experiencing more together. We have gone out for lunch, just me and my now eleven month old. Enjoying babbling conversations as she explores shrimp pad thai. We have gone to more playgrounds and on more than one occasion, have been 15 minutes late for nap. Not only have we both survived, we are having good times and relishing the few months we have left as a family of three.

Hopefully, when I am in waist high with my two sweet babes, I will remember the first lesson baby #2 taught me – these times are simple and sweet and tough. Don’t be held back by the tough logistics, push ahead and find just how full and enjoyable your days can be.


Navigating the hard choices

February 15, 2017

Over the weekend I was having a conversation with a mom who works part time.  She was sharing with me the conflict that she feels between being at home with her kiddos and being at work.  Always sort of feeling pulled between the two.

I can totally relate…even though I am a stay at home/work from home mom. I feel like I’m always making tough choices. Today even is a great example – my assistant is here. She helps with my business and she helps with my little peanut. It’s a great deal but doesn’t always flow seemlessly.

Today for instance he is working on his molars (which is a total bitch by the way). He hasn’t slept great the last few nights and today he doesn’t feel great.

How do I pass off my baby boy when I know he doesn’t feel well???

But at the same time, how do I not work when I only have these very small pockets of time when I can???

What I’ve come to realize (and mostly accept) is that there is always this sort of push pull feeling happening. The reason it’s there is because we have multiple really important things in our lives…and strangely we can’t do it all, be it all or have it all in this very instant.

For me…I’m almost always feeling like I’m trying my very best…but doing a half ass job. I have to remind myself to stop multitasking, to carve out specific times to do specific things. I’ve had to set some serious boundaries around my phone since I now have full 24/7access to my business in the palm of my hand.

I never fully go from one role to the next. My mom hat is always on – and I think that’s part of the role, right? So we’re always a mom and these other pieces and parts that are still really important have to fit in where they can.

Sometimes that can feel hard and frustrating (like the other day I told my hubby I was going  for some me time…to the flipping grocery store) but it’s what I choose. I’ve become much better at navigating the hard choices – trying to make space for everything as much as possible, but I don’t always do a good job.  When one thing is done that most certainly means several other things are not.

Interestingly enough, I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Emily xox

First steps

February 6, 2017

Exactly one week after my little peanut turned one, he took his first steps.

It’s been absolutely fascinating to witness the process.

He crawls himself over to the windows and practices balancing. Then, once he seems to have the hang of that he turns around and takes a few steps. He also practices walking along the furniture and letting go – or going from one piece of furniture to the next.

He is in the zone – he’s practicing – super focused yet having so much fun!

There are a few things that I find especially amazing.

  1. He decided on his own to start practicing. It’s almost as if he was like okay, I’m going to go ahead and do this now. No prompting from us – he just crawled over to the windows and started warming up to walk with some balancing exercises. Then off he went.
  2. He’s having a great time with it. He laughs when he falls – rolls around, smiles, claps – just having himself a good old time. No matter how many times he stumbles, he just gets right back up. He doesn’t look frustrated or tired or overwhelmed – he just looks so happy, so proud of himself and he is having so much fun.
  3. He plays it safe AND he pushes himself. He gauges distance. He looks around to see what he wants to walk to next, decides and then goes for it. He seems to know what he can for sure do and then he keeps pushing himself a little bit farther.  Sometimes he makes it, sometimes not – but he keeps going for it.  Even after a nasty face plant into his RadioFlyer – he took a brief timeout but then got right back to it!

It’s so fascinating to watch this process. I look at it from a parent perspective and from a life coaching perspective. At what point is that carefree, let’s have some fun and learn this new (and really important) thing lost to us? And more importantly, how do we get it back?

He doesn’t care about “figuring it out,” he doesn’t judge himself or get frustrated when he falls, he doesn’t say f-this I’m never going to walk. When he makes it – he claps, when he doesn’t he just chuckles and does it again.

Such a big life lesson wrapped in such a little package. I’m floored by how much I learn from him every single day.

Emily xox

And now I’m kind of freaking out!

January 31, 2017

Last week my baby boy turned one.

And it was amazing.

Mark and I sang Happy Birthday to him as we went to get him up for the day – he looked at us like we had lost it, then laid his head back down and calmly sucked his thumb until we were done.

He loved the balloons tied to his highchair, breakfast together, dancing in the kitchen, and the boxes that his gifts came in 😉

He loved his personal waterproof speaker – now he can drool carefree and hold his jams in his hand. Plus it really helps him get into the beat – a little FloRida anyone???

He loved his party and hanging with his family and friends. He loved wearing his new hats and being pulled around the living room in his new sled until waaaaaaaay past his bedtime.

He loved it all.

And now I’m kind of freaking out. It’s like the worst hangover/mini midlife crisis ever.

Holy $hi! my baby boy just turned ONE.

This past year was the fastest year of my life. And I TRIED to slow it down. I tried to take it all in.  I tried to enjoy the moments.

But damn that still went so flipping fast!

I LOVED the first year and now that chapter is officially closed – I’m just freaking out that it goes so fast.

Seriously – just thinking about it chokes me up.

I want to slow it down. To suspend time. To freeze frame every moment.

But I can’t. And that sort of sucks.

So I guess I’ll take a deep breath and do my best to feel it all. To experience it all and to not miss a single thing.

I will do my best to love my baby boy hard. To laugh with him, to play with him and to have so much fun.

I will do my best – knowing that it will be imperfect. Knowing that I can’t do it all. Knowing that I will make mistakes, miss things and probably piss a few people off along the way.

The good news is that as this chapter ends, a new one begins and I am so excited to write those 365 blank pages.

I’m still freaking out right now, but that too shall pass (and let’s be real – it’ll probably happen at least once every year).

Here’s to year 2!

Emily xox



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