by Ashley on October 27, 2011

Word on the street is that babies need a humidifier. When Hudson was a few days old, he sounded a little congested so Aron looked around at reviews and tried his best to find something (a) well-reviewed and (b)not hideous/ginormous. The combination of a plus b seemed elusive. By the time we found something even approximating a simple design, Hudson sounded better; the humidier has occupied a not-insubstantial portion of our bed area ever since.

I wish we’d known about this humidifier–praised by Rebecca–sooner. As much as a humidifier can be, it’s a beauty!

[images: Stadler Form Oskar and Fred, via The Daily Muse]

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“I am a father. Whoops.”

by Ashley on October 26, 2011

I almost woke Hudson up yesterday morning while laughing along with this completely irreverent take on new fatherhood: Asshole Baby.

[found by Aron via Thrillist]

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Playing Doctor

by Ashley on October 25, 2011

No, not that kind of “playing doctor.”

With his dad being a urologist, I’m of course drawn to doctor kits for Hudson. This wooden one seems especially like an especially nice one to start with (at least until he’s old enough for “Operation”).

[Top image from Soopsori via LMNOP; Second photo from the Bruhn family–that’s Aron at age six!]

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A babysitter–eek!

by Ashley on October 24, 2011


In an optimistic gesture, pre-Hudson, I bought tickets for us to see Andrew Bird play at the music hall in Tarrytown for Aron’s birthday. We figured that he would be anywhere from 8-14 weeks old, depending on when he arrived, and that we should do our best to get comfortable with using a babysitter early on.

On Thursday night, (the night before the show), I remembered about the tickets. Hudson has had a banner week as far as bedtime goes. Every night he falls asleep between 7 and 7:30 and stays asleep at least six hours. So with butterflies in our stomachs, we decided to start frantically asking friends for trusted babysitter recommendations and crossed our fingers that someone would be free and up for an evening of Netflix and babysitting at the last minute. And score!

When Hudson was about 10 days old, Aron and I snuck away to a party while my parents walked him around the West Village (which they loved), but this felt completely different. I think it took the entire drive out to Tarrytown to relax. By the time we walked into the tiny music hall and then went, beers in hand, to our seats, I was fine. It went so well! (The only hitch: I’m not sure I’m ready to stay up past 11pm yet.)

When do you think you will first use a babysitter? Or when did you? Were you able to relax while you were away? All I know if that for me, there’s no way I could have done this without feeling Hudson was learning to soothe himself to sleep. I can’t believe we thought we would be ready at 8 weeks! No way.

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Not enough wallspace

by Ashley on October 21, 2011

There are so many amazing new wallpapers showing up lately. Recent favorites by Famille Summerbelle (top) and Emma Molony. I love how you don’t immediately see that Molony’s are scenes from Peter Pan; they could be for a grown-up who doesn’t want to wear a serious expression in the middle of July…  Both could be, really.

[Images via Famille Summerbelle and Frolic]

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Opening Ceremony for Kids

by Ashley on October 20, 2011

Opening Ceremony just added retail for kids! Duds by brands like Jean Paul Gautier seem a little decadent for our bebe, but you gotta know I love the French Sailor shirts. And there are some really cool things for gifting.

[Via Style Revue]

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Dressing for cooler temps…

by Ashley on October 19, 2011

I just went back and looked at this guest post I wrote (pre-baby) for Alyson about a potential outfit for a nursing mom, and I’m happy to say that I still think it would be a good one! (The one challenge I encountered was that most of my pre-baby button-downs didn’t fit my post-baby chest–at least at first.) That said, this outfit along with some jeans and boots are probably going to be  a bit of a uniform these next couple of months.

Still, despite the fact that it has barely dipped below 70, I already have half a dozen questions about how to really be comfortable yet stylish in colder weather. Does this mean I won’t be using my silk longjohn tops? Do I just put away all of my non-cardigan sweaters for the season? Will going under the shirt cease to be as viable an option when he’s six months old? Will my coats work with a carrier? And that’s not even counting questions about dressing him.

Those of you who have been through a winter already, what were your staples? Is the button-down-and-scarf combo going to be all I want to wear? Did you feel like you needed a different kind of coat to keep you warm in spite of lower necklines or the presence of a carrier?

[Top image via Totokaelo]

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Three months

by Ashley on October 17, 2011

For some reason, for the past couple of weeks, when folks on the street ask how old Hudson is, I’ve been answering three months. So this time our little photo session has actually felt a long time coming! Perhaps it is because he seems to change so much with every week?

Something that hasn’t changed: I still can’t seem to choose just one photo. I have so many favorites! I held myself back to five this time.

Hudson continues to love standing, and is quite adept at lifting his head and standing from a recline–with a little hand-holding, of course. Toys are starting to become more interesting, especially now that he occasionally opens his hands to pinch at or reach for his favorites (which we tend to describe as Mr. this or that: Mr. Elephant, Mr. Birdie, and Mr. Scrapuloctopus). Mornings are the most fun as he smiles and shrieks and shares about a hundred different expressions (all while drooling profusely). One of the most notable new ones, however, is less happy: he now sticks out his lower lip when he starts to cry (it’s at once both incredibly sad and sort of funny). He loves to look around and prefers facing outward in a carrier when awake, and will often happily watch me do things around him from the vantage of a bouncy chair during the day. He watches everything with great intensity; he especially watches our mouths, often trying to mimic movements and then making little soft sounds. There were a few days where he seemed obsessed with sticking out his tongue and would sort of “lap” over and over! Lately he prefers to have his hands in his mouth–sometimes both, but usually just one, as much in as possible.

We just returned from our first road trip and he did such a good job in the car–even if the car seat is probably still not his favorite spot. We timed drives to naptimes and either gave him expressed milk from a bottle or a pacifier to help him drift off to sleep. He slept so well with all the jiggling. In fact, he slept so well on that trip! Every night was better than the last… six hours turned to nine hours by the end. But we haven’t been as lucky since returning  (in fact the first night back was reminiscent of week six) and so we are working hard to simulate vacation at home (as contradictory as that sounds). It was disheartening, and Friday–our first day back–felt really overwhelming. We had been especially excited because just before the trip we were looking into solutions for colic–cutting dairy from my diet, keeping him upright as much as possible… and were so relieved by the change that seemed to come simply with time. Now we are working on establishing our nighttime routine.

Finally, while we were taking his monthly photo, Hudson seemed to notice his toes for the first time! It was so funny; it was as if they suddenly appeared out of nowhere with a little sound effect–something like “boing!” from an episode of Bewitched. He was puzzled. Then transfixed. And then he kept pushing out his feet along the couch and feeling it before kicking about. It really is so incredible to watch his eyes widen as he discovers something new. We can actually see him learning.

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Packing List

by Ashley on October 7, 2011

We’re packing up for a family road trip. We leave tomorrow morning for the Berkshires; we’ll be staying in Lenox. Hudson has been able to fall asleep on our last two car rides, so I’m crossing my fingers for some peaceful drives through displays of colorful leaves.

I’ve been composing and editing a packing list over the course of the week in attempt to avoid tossing everything in the trunk at the last minute. I love this idea of keeping your packing lists as reminders of where you have been and of what was once important to you.

See you in a bit! (Wish me luck!)

(Top photo by Craig McDean for Tommy Hilfiger)

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A less practical gift

by Ashley on October 6, 2011

First off, the folks who are receiving your meals and diapers as gifts are super lucky! I agree that new parents really appreciate any help they can get with keeping themselves fed.

Here’s another–less practical–gift idea for new parents: family photos. Aron and I are secretly (well, until now I suppose) always wishing that someone will take a candid photo of the three of us (and used to wish for one of the two of us). I  know it sounds funny; we take a gazillion photos and have plenty of each other, but it’s more rare that we’re in photos together. Occasionally we’ll ask someone to take one, but those snapshots–where we stand awkwardly posing with wide smiles–are never my favorite.

When I saw this lovely photo Joanna’s cousin took of her with husband Alex and son Toby, on vacation in England, it occurred to me that such a candid moment captured so beautifully is something so many new parents would treasure.  So the next time you visit your friends with the new baby in the hospital, or even when you see them all gathered around their one-year-old’s birthday cake, be sure to take pictures–and send them along!

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