Dear Husband (from your Stay-at-Home-Wife)

~This post is in collaboration with PinkBlush, but all opinions are my own.~

Dear Husband (from your Stay-at-Home-Wife),

I write this as you drive ten hours and work thirteen today. I appreciate you and hope you understand the extent of that statement.

I know we made this decision together when we chose for me to stay at home. There was never an argument, only understanding and support from day one. I think it was something we both wanted equally.  I have always been thankful for the fact that we are on the same page more often than not.

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You have never made me feel guilty for bringing in little to no money over the last three years.  It has only ever been me who ever felt upset or saddened as an empty box appeared in our budget line for my portion of the monthly income.  You never blinked an eye and were just grateful that I could be home.

On that note, you have never asked me to start making money even when our budget dropped so low and we knew something needed to change. Instead you went out and found ways to make more money for our little family. I never doubt warmth in our home or full cabinets of food.

You work hard to provide and still come home at the end of the day and play with the kids and help put them to bed. Neither of our days ever really end. Sometimes I feel bad, if I am being honest, when both kids nap at the same time and I just relax. I know this isn’t what happens in the middle of your day. And yet, whenever I’ve admitted this, you just say, “Good for you. You need to rest.”

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I love the way our son’s face lights up when you walk through the door or call us in the middle of the day. Our daughter might not like everyone, but she sure loves you. I know they feel the same warmth and love that I do.

I know I have complained and let phrases slip from my mouth that I would like to take back.  Those are the days you have found me at my worst. Those words are never an indication of ungratefulness for what you do. It is my selfishness talking about my day. I really don’t wish these days away. Perhaps some seasons ( 😉 ) but you really have given me the best gift.

You have given me a life of learning and teaching and service. You’ve unknowingly opened up my life to so many opportunities I never knew existed or dreamed about.

And lastly, when I told you this summer I wanted to start working from home, you made sure it was the right decision and then jumped all in. When I ask you to watch the kids because I have a photo shoot or a writing deadline, you are there.

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My prayer for our children is that our son becomes a father like you and our daughter knows what a true, loving man is because of your example.

So, Husband of this Stay-at-Home-Sometimes-Working-Wife-and-Mom, I love you and thank you.  You are my teammate for life.

Love, Me

~~~

How beautiful is this Black Floral Crochet Trim Bell Sleeve Wrap Top from PinkBlush? I am probably going to wear it out too much this holiday season, but I absolutely don’t care! It’s just the perfect shirt for holiday gatherings, date nights and photo shoots with my husband! ❤

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xo, bethany rose

What’s on my Baby’s Feet | Potato Feet

My sweet little girl has teeny, tiny feet.

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So tiny that even with the blessing of all the clothes from friends and family, she still didn’t even fit into the shoes gifted us! The weather outside was getting oh so much colder (someone please tell me why summer has to end in Pennsylvania?!) and I knew I needed to find some warm, comfy shoes. Because, let’s face it, socks just do not stay on babies’ feet!

Well, I find a lot scrolling Instagram and someone had posted these adorable shoes on their little one. Naturally, being in the shoe dilemma I was in, I clicked and it brought me to Potato Feet.

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I was instantly hooked. Not only did they have a bunch of different styles and colors of shoes, but they had warm, snug, tiny shoes that looked perfect for Hadley.

The irony about this company though is that the owner created it because her son had bigger feet before he was ready to walk and she needed something soft and comfortable that did not have a rubber sole just yet!

(So honestly, if you’re hunting around for shoes for big OR small feet, this is your place.)

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We got the Dusk Booties because I was looking for a color that was neutral and could go with pretty much any outfit (however, I was totally eyeing  the Minted Lace ones because they’re so pretty!). The booties are such a good style for smaller babies because they are soft like slippers and completely comfortable for the baby.

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Also, bonus, I am not saying any shoe is “fool proof” in the falling off department, but these are pretty darn close. They fit well around her ankles with a stretchy elastic band on the top of her foot making them super easy to pull on, but then snug enough to keep on as well!

These shoes are a total winner in my book and I am so happy to have stumbled across them! Be sure to check them out and use code WELCOME to get 15% off your first order!

xo, bethany rose

Postpartum Hair Loss

Ok, I just need to be real with you all for a second.

I think my baby is the cutest thing since April the Giraffe had her baby. She (sometimes) smells like roses and sunshine and when she is sleeping it is the most peaceful thing ever. I love when my son holds her and looks at me with his humongous, all-cheeks, proud smile.

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What I don’t love are the things that happen to me postpartum. Everyone knows those first few weeks after having a baby include bleeding, ouchies, a stomach that no amount of pizza can fix and you may as well start dragging around a water fountain if you plan to nurse.

But when all of that is said and done and you think life is on the uphill…your hair starts falling out.

Say whaaat?!

Those prenatals that gave you those glorious locks just aren’t doing the tricks anymore. Instead your estrogen level drops taking a ton of hair along with it. When I had Emmett this happened and I took some biotin and eventually my hair was back to normal. This time though it feels like it is rougher. The amount of hair that I can lose is intense. 

I became slightly desperate to help my hair and put to rest the balding spots (they were for real happening). I wanted to do this naturally for my hair and not harm it in any way. In my ‘quest for knowledge (and to defeat this dragon of a problem)’ I came across three resources that I wanted to share.

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1.Biotin. I mentioned earlier that I started taking this after giving birth to Emmett. I decided to do so again because I think it may have helped the hair loss stop a little sooner. If you decide to take Biotin, know that it is measured in micrograms. You can take a tablet anywhere from around 30 mcg to 10,000 (not sure if it goes higher). If you do a quick google search you will hear different arguments for how much should be taken while breastfeeding.

2. Collagen Peptides. If you follow me on instagram you may have seen my post earlier this week about Vital Proteins. Collagen is an extremely beneficial and natural protein. It helps strengthen hair, nails, bones and even helps your skin. You can read all the science and awesomeness of it here. As for me, I’ve been taking this in my smoothies and apple cider 1 or 2 times a day.

3. Essential Oil Spray. I wish I could give the person who came up with this credit, but I ran across it on instagram I think! Anyways, I took a tiny spray bottle, filled it with water and added 10 drops of the following: lavender, rosemary and cedarwood. I will say that some websites say don’t let lavender near your babies. I feel comfortable using this spray though because I literally spray maybe 3 squirts in the morning and at night directly to my scalp. It is do diluted that, for me personally, I am not concerned.

Ok, so you obviously want to know if this all worked, right? Well, it did. it did not all work immediately. It took a little bit of time. But in a couple of weeks my balding spots were already starting to fill in and this week less hair was falling out of my head in the shower!

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Which of the 3 worked best? Well, I am not sure. I used all 3 simultaneously because I was a bit desperate.

Did enough time pass that your hair just stopped falling out on its own? Possibly. But I know I had nothing to lose taking these three things. If anything, the collagen and biotin are making my nails strong and my skin smoother (less breakouts, people!!!). And the essential oil spray is making my hair smell lovely.

xo, bethany rose

An essay at Mother.ly

Before Hadley was born I wrote an essay about the end of pregnancy. I submitted it online and then kind of forgot about it to be honest. Well a couple weeks ago I got a message that  Mother.ly had accepted it and decided to publish it. I was so excited!!!

Then this week I got notice that it had officially gone live on their site. I wanted to share it with y’all. Thank you for reading here and I hope you enjoy it there.

“It will only be so much longer that my son runs over to me to kiss and hug my belly, unknowingly kissing and hugging his little sibling from the outside world….People will stop genuinely asking how I am feeling….Seats will not be miraculously opened anymore for the woman with a huge belly…It will not be forever that my husband whispers his love to an unseen child, telling them about the world they will soon enter.”

Read the full essay here, “There’s no way to speed up this pregnancy, so perhaps I should slow down.

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xo, bethany rose

My [raw] Motherhood Essays #2

edited to add: I’ve received such wonderful feedback on this already and I am so appreciative of that. I did want to reiterate though that I realize this “resting period” is a season. With our son we had him in China at 6 months of age and did a lot with him. This time is just different–and that’s okay with us. It’s still early 🙂 

It was a summer with one item on the bucket list and it wasn’t a traditional item either. A summer where I learned to just say, “Oh well.” A summer where whatever happened happened and I learned to say, “Next year.” As I planned for this summer I even kept my hopes and lists down and yet I still felt the sting of disappointment. Disappointment that was soon turned into a smile exchanged between my husband and me because we knew….we knew it was just a season.

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When I found out I was due with our second baby at the beginning of the summer (bucket list: check!) , I shrugged it off and said, “No plans. No commitments. We’ll just stay home all summer and adjust to life with two. ” And while that is what we did for a large portion of it, I soon realized my whatever attitude might not be enough to glide through.  I came up with a tiny list of things I’d like to do over the summer. I made it small and simple:

1. Blueberry pick.

2.Work on my photography.

3.Go hiking.

4. Roadtrip to our friends’ house 4 hours away.

5. A day at the beach

Instead this is what happened: We arrived to pick blueberries on a somewhat rainy day just as the baby needed to eat. My husband and son started picking without us and by the time I was done, the rain was in full swing. They returned to the car with a small bag of berries and I never left the car.

Work on photography? If you count pictures of my new baby, that’s about it.

Oh, we went on a hike. It actually went really great. But the amount of time it took to figure out food for a gluten intolerant child with limited options, picking a place to hike that was over an hour away and a baby that was still eating every two hours…well let’s just say we did it only once.

And as for our road trip to see our friends, I got the phone call en route that my grandfather had passed away. That road trip turned into two back to back trips and sleeping in five different  places that week.  I did, however, get my beach day in.

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If there was one thing that could make me slow down, it was the birth of my daughter. My daughter has showed me that I cannot do everything. Nay, I should not do everything. Even more, four months later I still find myself quitting things and saying no to things as I just try to survive and navigate “mom of two” life. I find it ironic that my daughter’s name in Hebrew means “resting” or “rest of God.” I feel like that is literally being thrust upon me and I have no choice but to “give up.”

It can be a negative or positive thing depending on your outlook. I never wanted to be someone who stopped doing things because I had children. Go ahead. Laugh. Judge me. While I admit it part way has to do with pride, it also has to do with the belief that I think too many people really put their kids in front of themselves too much and stop doing things. Please. Let me explain.

I want to give my children the world. I want to be selfless and teach, love and show them what it means to be a kind human and love Jesus with all their hearts. My prayer every day is that my children will be in Heaven with me eternally. I will do anything in my power to be a catalyst in that relationship.

So when I talk about people putting their children in front of them I mean this: we are parents but we are also wives, friends, daughters and workers/volunteers/etc. here on earth. We need to take care of ourselves. We need to still find our identity in Jesus and pursue passions and talents of ours. As parents though, I realize we might not be able to pursue it 100% as we did before. But we can still pursue it to some degree. I believe finding that balance lies in conversation with God and your husband and possibly a mentor if you have one.

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Ok, that was a long tangent. I digress.

 I am learning to rest. I am learning to say, “not this season” or “just because we can’t do that now, doesn’t meant we never will.” I may or may not have started that mentality with some kicking and screaming. But I am at peace now. I am at peace that I made it to the beach once this summer. I am at peace that we ate outside for one meal. I am at peace that a new summer wardrobe was not bought. I am at peace that we didn’t even make it to the zoo.

I’m learning to focus on specific things in life and not 842 of them. It’s making me really think about what I want to spend my time on and where it should be. TV has become a luxury at times.

I look at my son and he has no idea he spent his summer playing at a water table we found on the side of the road and going to the same park repeatedly. He’s happy he has a new sister and his family eats dinner together every night, even if we ate pasta salad entirely ten too many times.

I look at my husband. He knows what I have learned. His summer was not what he hoped either. He made it on maybe five motorcycle rides this summer, a number entirely too low for him. He is the most laid back, kind man I know though and I am grateful our children have his attitude and character to look up to.

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And I look at my daughter amd I think, “You did this.” She slowed us down. Her presence made us rethink our commitments and hammer down where we are meant to focus our talents. She is teaching us to rest. Even if I am kicking and screaming.

xo, bethany rose