S: Precious Moments. Advice. Must Haves. Friendships. Support. For Lindsay 2011
BC: Made with love, friendship and endless free passes to call me when you want advice, have a question or just need someone to listen.! I love you- Congrats Mommy! xxoo, Sarah Surritt | "Build me a son, whose heart will be clear, whose goals will be high, a son who will master himself before he seeks to master other men, one who will learn to laugh, yet never forget to weep, one who will reach into the future, yet never forget the past." -Author Unknown
FC: To Mama-to-be Lindsay With love, Sarah
1: Dear Lindsay What an exciting time! I am so thrilled for you! Before you know it Colton will be here with us! Here’s something I put together for you to reference when you just need a moment to yourself to figure things out! I interviewed close to 40 moms (even a couple not-yet moms!) and asked them for their must haves, advice on parenting, favorite quotes or any other advice that stuck in their minds and made an impact on who they are today and what they do with their own little ones when the goin' gets tough. It was all pretty thrilling for me to be a part of. I have collected these thoughts and put them down in this keepsake book for you to thumb through when you wish. Each page you come across includes a familiar face along with the mom, family member or friend who shared it. You'll also find some of the popular must haves in the gift box . I hope you will enjoy this as a dear friend made a similar gift for me. and it still holds a special place in my heart! One day,... or several!... you may find yourself breaking out in a deep sweat (these are the days you need the wine handy!)due to ultimate embarrassment because of your child’s behavior in public, or you may be on the phone crying to your friends (call me any time!), your sis, mom or your pediatrician because Colton won't sleep, eat or has a fever. You may also become overrun with pride, admiration and a new inexplicable love for someone you never thought possible.. When these days happen take a deep breath, close your eyes and take a picture and know that everything will be okay. Just when you think it can’t get better, it does! This too shall pass!Memories will last a lifetime. So many moms told me ”it goes so fast, they grow so fast”..it’s true, so enjoy each and every moment. I wish you and Jon all the best in this next chapter of your life. I hope you enjoy motherhood every bit as I have. . It's the hardest, yet most rewarding job I've ever had and every day I am thankful for the experience. You've been an amazing friend to me and I know you are going to be an even MORE amazing mama! I hope this gift brings you a few laughs, some tears and most of all empathy for all moms in the world around us. It did for me. Welcome to the club! With love and endless friendship, Sarah Surritt May 2011
2: Must Haves!!! Baby Bjorn that's what got us through her fussy evenings-life saveR! Papasan a Cozy place for them to sleep Alison Donaldson Mother of Haley, 2 yrs | Tucks Pads For some of us, the pushing had some longer term reminders. Have in case you’re a bit extra sore down there when you get home from the hospital. Amy Abola, Mother of 2 | Aspirator and Saline Drops AKA: The booger sucker works wonders!!!! All Moms | Charlie | James
3: "Being a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs... since the payment is pure love." - Mildred B. Vermont | Advice Be sure that you can always say "I am my kid's mom" and "I am my husband's girlfriend." - Dr. Laura | Pear Cider is awesome on those nights you want to rip your hair out-AManda Stroberg, Mother of 3
5: Advice: The most important thing a Mom can do is show love with lots of touching, holding, smiling and talking to both infants and toddlers. When their behavior is less than perfect take a few deep, yoga breaths and always sit down with them for discipline. Standing up is too aggressive and we look so big when they’re looking up at us. It’s extremely important from toddler through high school to keep them busy with lots of confidence building activities. Must Have This is old fashioned now but when you girls were small I used the book “Hints from Heloise” many times for stain removal and other problems. Always have scotch tape and duct tape handy for book and toy repairs. Love, Mom | Linz & Steph
6: Motherhood Motherhood just keeps getting better and better! There is nothing like hearing your daughter say "mommy" in her sweet, girlie voice and giving you a big hug accompanied by a wet, open mouthed kiss! -Pam Blumenkranz mother of Sawyer Advice “Set a good example.” Penny Coleman, mother of 3, grandmother of 8 "You've always been excellent at your job and excelled at all tasks. well being a mommy is your new job. Embrace it with the same focus and enthusiasm." -Tanya Hauer Advice work as a team- multi-tasking is a must- you have to give up some things and pick and choose your battles in order to remain sane, enjoy all the little moments-they go by fast, trust your gut-it's probably right 90% of the time, play with your kids and be creative-they enjoy even the simplest things like rainbow sprinkles, shake-milks, pancakes for breakfast, a new box of crayons and a blank piece of paper... Jacqui Campuzano, Ryan 7, Caden 5, Keegan 2 | Must Have Video baby monitor. I didn't start using this until Sawyer was about 5 months old, but when I did, there was no turning back! When your baby criesou just turn on the monitor to view the activity in the other room. You don't even have to get out of bed! Plus, if the monitor is by your bed, it doubles as a night light in the middle of the night. A multi-purpose machine! Amy Darcy, Mother of 2 Must Have Umbrella Stroller I love the umbrella stroller, it's soo easy - especially for shopping, gets around all the tight spots and Chelsea is big enough that she likes to push it too. -Megan Eriksen, mother of 2 Favorite Quote (Jill Jones) "I had a mind once. Now I have small children." The unconditional love of a child is amazing, but the mother that cares for the child is astonishing! Mothers can be referred to as heroes, super human, and sometimes crazy people! -Stacey Little,, mother of 2 | Advice Don’t do anything at home that you can’t do or bring “out and about”. Ie: Diaper wipe warmer heating up bottles of formula. And always have lollipops in your car. Libby Perry, mother of 3 Must Have Vaseline Some doctors require you to take the baby’s temp through the rectal area. If so, you want plenty of Vaseline. -All Moms Must Have Snacks! Once you hit the toddler years be sure you pre=pack a mini cooler of on-the-go snacks!! You will be so thankful you did. In the car, in the stroller, at the the park. WHEREVER you are....you will hear the statement: "mom.....I'm hungry, I want a snack!"
7: Advice Never turn down help from those who offer Aways keep wine stocked Take a lot of pictures (there are never too many of your own kids) It's ok to NOT like breastfeeding Don't be afraid to sleep train when they are old enough. -Dana Neuhausen Mother of Reid 4 & Colby 2 | "Enjoy the ride and be not in a hurry to get to the destination for it is closer to the end." - Jeanette Ferrera | "Youth fades, love droops, the leaves of friendship fall; a mother's secret hope outlives them all." Oliver Wendell Holmes | Whatever the challenge, whatever the task, whatever your striving for give it your best. -Carly Vermes | Reid & Colby | Charlie Brown
8: Must Haves Arbonne diaper rash cream Earth Mama natural nipple butter Fruit snacks from costco (It's harder to throw a tantrum with them in your mouth!) -Stephanie Davis You really don't know what love is until you look into your child's eyes for the first time!
9: Advice Try to find humor in everything they do. Its so easy to get frustrated when you're sleep deprived and in a hurry and they are pulling everything in reach off the shelves at Target and have a full blown tantrum when you take their 5th baby doll away. But if you step back for a moment and try to watch as an outsider its really pretty funny. It goes by so fast. Try to find joy in even the most trying times. -Stephanie Davis Mother of Charlotte, 2 Advice The best advice someone gave me was to think about a habit you are starting and ask yourself if it is something you want to keep doing EVERYDAY. -April Amoroso,Paige 6 & Sydney 4
10: The first 30 days of being a new mom comes complete with a roller coaster of emotions, steep learning curve, and challenges of every kind. Every woman deals with the challenge of new motherhood differently - there is no right way. But one thing is for sure - you will fall in love like you never have before! As the Baby gets older, diaper changing will get harder. The Baby will wiggle, squirm, bolt away, and even try to play with their poop. Be sure to reserve a toy just for diaper changing time to keep their attention so you can get the task done! Peggy Hawksford Mother of Tyler, 20m | Motherhood While some think of this as the marriage vow of love, it certainly has true affinity to loving the children who will test us, question us and some days, wonder where we came from, but despite that, we are the mothers who bear them, and we have the honor of raising them and showing them the way, and loving them unconditionally. Therefore, this holds the test of time with children, to always keep them in that most sacred place. Love is patient,love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. Becky Vermillion, mother of 2
11: Advice Keep a Journal, Get their hands and feet imprinted, Get dressed first thing in the morning or you'll never get another chance all day! Drink lots of iced tea and beer--its good for breast milk and you too! Christina McTigue, Haley 5 & Joseph 2! | "It is not what you do for your children but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them successful human beings." -Ann Landers | Tyler
12: The most moving thing about motherhood is the feeling you receive from holding them close seeing that sweet little face looking up at you and also watching them change so quickly in each new phase. Enjoy them all because they grow up very quickly. -Mom
14: "The greatest thing she'd learned over the years is that there's no way to be a perfect mother, but a million ways to be a good one" -- Author Unknown I'M STILL WORKING ON THIS LESSON...DON'T BE TOO HARD ON YOURSELF!!! -Aubree Smith | Nathan
15: Advice Any mother who says "Enjoy every moment" is either certifiably insane or has sunshine up her @$$! My advice would be: Try your best to live in every moment. Not every aspect of motherhood is enjoyable, but every moment passes - some with just a beat of your heart. Often, the most humbling times, or frustrating hurdles, end up being those that you look back upon with laughter and pride, as the hurdles are overcome. Aubrey Smith Mother of Nathan 3 & one more on the way!
16: Q-Tips These are great for getting boogers out of the little noses.. I know, gross but a Kleenex and your big finger just don't work that well! All Moms | Must Have Hand Sanitizer -Dana | Must Have WINE Andrea Coleman, mother of 3 | Charlie | Once the baby is old enough to get out of the bassinet and into a crib, do not keep the baby in your room. The baby needs to learn to fall asleep by himself. Any questions, please ask Dana, she is the best Mom ever. Don't listen to any grandma's, because we spoil the grand kids. With love, Barbara Malmberg
17: Advice Double wrap your crib mattress with a mattress pad and sheet twice so when you have to change it in the middle of the night you can peel off the top two layers and then have a fresh set of sheets already on it – cribs are a pain to change so it gives you an extra round of use! - most moms | Quote "You don't really understand human nature unless you know why a child on a merry-go-round will wave at his parents every time around - and why his parents will always wave back." ~William D. Tammelus Care of Dana
18: Kleenex Tissue - cause we all have our moments of "joyful-torturous emotion" | Advice Sing. When you are at your wits end and Colten can't be consoled, sing or hum ANY song, commercial, lullaby, etc. It doesn't matter whether or not you can carry a tune. The results are magical for both of you. Jeanette Ferrera, Mother of Drake, 18m | Must Have My Skip Hop Diaper bag. Brilliantly designed and super functional.
19: "Today's beautiful moments are tomorrow's precious memories". Enjoy every moment with your Child - they grow up way to fast!!! -Peggy | April 22, 2011 My Dear Linz, Being so very far away while you were growing into this wonderful person you are, I missed a lot. My only trip to CA leaves me with the memory of a bubbly little curly-haired blonde who had so much energy and was so busy with gymnastics and dance that you reminded me of a humming bird. I know you will make a wonderful Mom and raise a happy, healthy little boy (probably with blonde curls and lots of energy. My advice to you is to never, Never, NEVER, leave home without the little round, yellow, cheerios cup filled with, guess what?????, CHEERIOS! I've never known a child yet who couldn't be calmed by this little round cup of goodies. Another thing to remember juice is not good for their teeth. As old as I am I didn't know this and I gave Ashley lots of juice and nearly rotted her teeth out! When it comes to Potty Training, be patient and: -Stay at home for a week. -Take the diaper off. -Prepare the potty chair. -Give him a book to look at, a song to sing, and lots of praise and, guess what??, it works. Right Start (company) also has little pee-pee targets that float in the toilet and helps them with their aim. Make some time for you and Jon to have a date nite once in a while. I know motherhood totally consumes you, even if you think it doesn't. You will be sleep deprived, exhausted, and still have to get up and go to work – unfortunately, that's life. Remember what most of us forget – there was life before children and there will be you and Jon left in the golden years of your life. AND, your children will have their own lives. From this day forward, you will ALWAYS be a Mom, so love it, embrace it, and be sure to let us watch your baby grow! Thank God for the Internet Photos (remind Steph that I haven't seen new pics of Charley for a while). We love you, Mazie and Bill
20: Must Have Cheerios MORE snacks Never leave home without a snack! It helps with everything- From distractions to avoiding possible nuclear meltdowns! ( I said I would never let my daughter eat in the store.little did I know!) Steph Rossler, mother of 1 Toy On your long walks or trips out to conquer your errands, make sure you have a little something to keep the little one entertained. All moms | Must Have Coloring book and Crayons Don’t assume your child can entertain themselves and don’t assume that the Dr.’s office or restaurant will provide things for your little one to play with. Super Nanny Lansinoh If you wantJon to enjoy your boobs again some dayyou will put this on religiously! Anonymous | Advice Sleep when the baby sleeps. The dishes and laundry will be there when you wake up! Routine, routine, routine. Nighttime routines are a MUST! It took 9 months to put the weight on... you have to give yourself at LEAST 9 months to get it off! -susie Metzger, June 5, TJ 3 | Charlie
21: Must Haves Socks Shout Extra Wipes Extra Diapers Spare outfit Baby Orajel | Must Have Extra Outfit Always keep an extra outfit and diaper with wipes for the baby in the car and at least a pair of pants in the diaper bag. I've had Liam prance around in his diaper with only a shirt on too many times you'd think I'd learned my lesson. I usually put an outfit in the bag that's not my favorite so it wasn't too missed. Amber Wilson, Liam 4 & Sophia 8mo | Must Have Duck thermometer Use this all the time so you don’t have your toddler look and say to you ”you burnt the baby!” - Katherine,Babysitter | Must Have: Motrin Just a quick tip that you can alternate Tylenol and Motrin every 2 hours when baby has a fever or is sick. Also, Motrin is much stronger than Tylenol. -All Moms
22: Must Have Books Books Books It's never too early to start reading to Colton.! They are never too young to listen. I think we started at about 6 months old. James and Charlie LOVE books. Their first favorites became: Goodnight Moon, Brown Bear Brown Bear, The Big Red Barn and I love you through and through. It made my heart skip a beat in utter amazement the first time James pointed to the red balloon when I asked him where it was (Goodnight Moon). Damn he's smart. Ha Ha. Proud mama moment. Nothing better than having your little one grab a book and walk up to you wanting to cuddle into your lab on the floor so you can read a story. At 16 months James did it and NOWCharlie tells ME what books he wants me to read. I love that they love story time so much.! Sarah Surritt, mama of 2 | Advice For the safety of your child, don't teach or promote your children to be magnetized to dogs. Choosing the fantasy of look how much the dog loves the baby leads to heartbreak too many times. -Sarah, dog mom | James
23: Advice Go with the flow and give up expectations of yourself. Follow your instincts and his cues. You will learn his language. Be patient with him, with yourself and with your loved ones. Be sure to have a bottle of wine on hand. And lastly, ask for help. -Sarah Surritt, proud mama of 2 boys | Camera Splurge and buy an SLR Digital Camera. Take pictures -lots and lots of pictures. Each month during his first year, take a photo next to a favorite stuffed animal to see his growth. Use your camera to take little video clips- that way they are simple, 1 minute videos you don't have to worry about editing later. Even if you don't print every photo, you can keep them organized on your computer. Sometimes it's nice to just sit down and look back on your little ones to see how far you've all come....time goes by so fast and trust me, you'll be so glad you captured those moments. And don't listen to Jon if he tells you that you take too many!! PS. Don't forget to label those photos- when he's a year old (or older) and you go back you'll forget how old he was in the photo.... was that 2 weeks? 6 weeks? 12 weeks?? Sarah Surritt, James 4 & Charlie 2yrs | Charlie & James | Being a brother is better than being a superhero!