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Chic Baby

Chic Baby
Mom Guilt: Why We Really Need To Let Go Of The Shame and Start Living Our Lives
August 8, 2017 at 1:32 am 0
Hey Ya'll I am back. Sorry there was a short hiatus here, but I have been working on a couple of things for all of you. One of them being this new series which you can follow over on my Instagram. Motherhood, it is an amazing journey filled with endless love. Yet, there are many aspects of Motherhood that people just really try not to talk about. We all have many, as I like to call them, "not so chic moments" of Motherhood. One of them being, Mom guilt.   Mom guilt as I like to call it, has many...many forms. You leave your kids to go to work and make a living... you feel guilty. You go out to see your girlfriends once a month... you feel guilty. You tell your child the cookies are gone and you secretly ate them in the bathroom, well because you needed that cookie and some alone time... you feel guilty. Oh and the above image is when my child decided to one up me and put herself in time out. Guess what?? It seriously gave me Mom guilt because I started to think I put her in time out too much! Okay, that last one is a true story...guilty as charged over here, but is anyone else tired of the Mom guilt? I think we can be honest that we all don't love every single minute of Motherhood. We aren't robots and we most definitely are not perfect. So I am starting this little series in which every Monday I will share on my Instagram and blog a favorite Mom guilt from the last week. I hope this sparks conversation for us in which we can talk about it, laugh about it and for goodness sakes start living a little without it? Have you had any Mom Guilt Moments?  
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Mommy And Me Style: The Perfect Dresses For Spring And Summer
March 5, 2017 at 4:46 am 0
This weekend we had no set plans and I honestly can't remember the last time that happened.  It has been really lovely to wake up and go at our own pace with no set agenda ahead. I have even been to the gym twice...who am I? So while my sweet little babe is napping, I am getting ahead of some long awaiting blogging. I wanted to share this Mommy and Me look that I shot with Willow some time ago. I have posted about it several times on my Instagram, and it is finally making it's debut. With warmer days ahead these breezy dresses are the perfect fit for spring and summer.

Shop This Look:

Photo Credit: Kate Hauschka Photography

 
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Chic Baby
The Perfect, Kid Friendly Guacamole Recipe
February 22, 2017 at 6:29 am 0
Does your household celebrate taco Tuesday? Turkey tacos and guacamole is a constant in our house. One of my biggest cravings that I had when pregnant with Willow was avocados. It's no wonder that she also loves them! As a Mom, I really appreciate finding easy recipes that I know the whole family can enjoy. I snagged this 5 minute recipe from one of my best girl friends, India and it has remained a favorite for the last several years. You can really make it two ways, one for your children to enjoy and one with a kick of jalapeños that really gives it a spicy kick.

Gather your ingredients:

4 Ripe Avocados (press them gently, they should give a little)

1/4 red onion, finely chopped

1/2 vine tomato, finely chopped

1/2 lemon

salt

 

Instructions:

  1. Cut Avocados in half, remove the pit. Score the inside of the avocado with a knife and scoop out the flesh with a spoon into a bowl. I mash the avocado just a bit, as I really like it stay chunky.
  2. Add chopped onion and tomatoes, mash again to mix.
  3. Squeeze half a lemon to add juice to guacamole and salt to taste. Mash again to mix.
  4. Serve immediately with your favorite chips, raw vegetables, or as a topping to your tacos! Enjoy!

*To make the spicy adult version, I add a 1/4 of a fresh, chopped jalapeño to step 2.

Photo Credit: Kate Hauschka Photography  
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Chic Baby
Comparing Preschool Philosophies: Finding The Right Program For Your Child
September 5, 2016 at 10:33 pm 0
unspecified Preschool, did I just really say that? Is my baby going to actual school, with classmates, teachers and leavinggggggg meeee? She is my first born ya know, I may cry a little watching her march into the classroom for the first day and become even more independent. You know what else made me cry a little? The list of 15 preschools that I applied to, set up tours with and basically stalked. I mean when did preschools get waiting lists? When I grew up (I just totally aged myself there), you went to the preschool in your church, or whatever was down the street, just simple and easy. I think my Mom was happy I learned my ABC's, 123's, and colors. Nowadays there are quite a few different philosophies including  Motessori, Waldorf, Progressive, Traditional, and Reggio Emilia to name a few! Feeling flustered yet? Well that's where I come in! I wanted to make The Chic Mamas a place where parents can come to find easy and simple information on how to choose the right preschool program for your family! I know it feels like a big task, so let me help break down each philosophy for you below to make it a little easier on you.
  • The Montessori Method
    • This is a child-centered approach in which the child's play is considered their work and they learn at their own pace. Teachers serve as a guide to help foster independence, self-esteem and confidence in each child. Classes have mixed age groups that encourage older children to help younger children learn. Materials in the classroom are called "manipulatives" which are based in three different learning groups: practical life skills, sensory skills, and language/mathematical skills. Think puzzles, or a ribbon tying station for example, each material allows the child to determine if he or she has done the exercise correctly. A teacher doesn't correct a child's work, rather they are encouraged to try again,  ask the teacher for suggestions or ask another child for help.
 
  • The Waldorf Approach
    • This approach aims to educated the whole child, "head, hands and heart". There is an emphasis on creative and imaginative play with a focus on teamwork and community. With the Waldorf approach, what may seem like extracurricular activities in other schools are the main learning tools in this setting with hands on play including art, gardening, puppetry, cooking, dress up, foreign languages, singing, etc. Teachers must be certified and aim to enable students to choose and realize their path in life. The Waldorf classroom will look and feel "homey" with natural materials such as different textured cloths for dress-up, wooden blocks for building, kitchen utensils, musical instruments, etc.
 
  • Progressive or The Bank Street Model
    • This model is child-centered in which the child is a planner, participant and problem solver. Usually there is no pre-planned curriculum, and the teacher follows the child's lead in areas of interest where they encourage children to pursue their own projects. Children learn and explore through art, imaginative play, block building, etc. Every child is acknowledged as an individual that each have different needs. A classroom may be set up with "stations" different materials to foster the child's imaginative play.
 
  • Traditional Method 
    • This method is very structured and formal. It is teacher-led with a pre-set curriculum. The teacher drives each lesson by explaining and directing, while the child learns from listening and absorbing the information, rather than exploration. Goals of the curriculum are built around teaching letters, numbers, sounds, problem solving, shapes, math and listening. In this setting, classrooms may be set up with desks for each child.
 
  • The Reggio Emilia Approach
    • This multi-sensory approach focuses on providing opportunities for problem solving through creative thinking and exploration. The teacher puts a great deal of energy into the detail of the classroom. The classroom is looked at as an educator, and is made to be inviting and stimulating. You may find different areas dedicated to art, exploration with natural materials like sand or water, science and building, dramatic play, math or writing. In this setting children are invited to explore and problem solve. The teacher observes each child to see an area of interest and then acts as a guide by asking the child questions helping them to discover hypotheses, ideas and theories.
  You may find that many schools take a part of each philosophy to build a blended learning environment as well. I hope that you can use these tips on each philosophy to go into any tour or preschool setting feeling knowledgeable and aimed with information to help narrow down your choices. I found that understanding each philosophy helped me stay focused when choosing preschools to tour. Later this month I will also be sharing the most important questions to ask on a tour and my downloadable spreadsheet to help you stay organized with all of this craziness! Let me know which method you prefer and works for your family in the comments below!

XOXO,

Abby

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Chic Baby
Tame the Toddler Tantrum
April 12, 2016 at 1:48 am 0
2016.03.30_ChicMamas_FINAL-20

Dress | Sunglasses | Sandals

As parents, we love our children unconditionally, yet that does not mean that we don't run into some daunting situations when our beloved toddler is on the verge of a major meltdown. Tantrums are at times inevitably a part of the growing pains in which your little one may not be able to articulate their needs yet or just have you in the mist of a straight power struggle. Let's be honest, it is exhausting! Here are a few ways that I deal with my toddler's tantrums that help keep my sanity on a day to day basis!

  1. Stay Calm
From the countless number of child development books I have read, and scouring the parenting chat rooms to gain knowledge from other's shared experiences, staying calm is key. Your children act out for attention, and the kind you give them in the heat of a fit is really important, as they really don't care if it is positive or negative. All they care about is that they are getting a reaction and/or attention from you. Which perpetually can cause them to continue to act out to receive that same attention. So I take a deep breath, use a normal tone and usually wait for Willow to realize she isn't getting too much attention from me for her behavior. 2. Diversion Small children usually have small attentions spans. This is a hidden gem when your toddler decides to have a complete meltdown because they can't hold that death trap of a knife, or climb over the railing of the stairs. Reasoning with Willow usually does not work for me with Willow when a tantrum is brewing. Diverting her attention to other items in the room or asking her questions about different topics until something sticks is how I avoid the screaming and the crying. If we are in the store, I try to distract her by asking her to help me pick out apples, or take her to the sushi counter to let her see the Chef make some rolls. It isn't 100% effective, but it definitely helps me avoid a major scene. Oh and let's just talk about that scene! I read somewhere once that laughing it off, while your kid flails around on the ground is actually a great way to deal with tantrums. It doesn't give the kids the attention they want. Yet  most parents got nervous about what others would think about their child's behavior to have that mentality. Interestingly enough, studies have shown that people do judge parent's reaction to the meltdown, not your child's actual tantrum. So laugh it off if you can, calmly wait for your child to come back around to reality, pick them up, hug them, talk about the crazy rant after the fact, and pat yourself on the back for being awesome (a glass of wine doesn't hurt either). 3. Hug It Out Finally, after your tiny human being returns to their adorable self. Hug it out and breathe a sigh of relief that we made it through the storm! I usually make one comment about how that wasn't very fun, and try to positively reinforce her good behavior. I really think Willow shows her anger at the beginning of the tantrum, and then I see it go away when she starts crying because I honestly think she feels herself losing control of her emotions. At times this can be a lot for a 2 year old, and if I really take as step back to look at how adults go through life, we still have meltdowns too! Remember these are milestones in your child's development and they will pass. So even after that wailing, flailing, screaming and God knows what else, you still love them and its best to show it.   These are ways that I deal with my daughter and her ever-growing, independent self. How do you deal with your toddler's emotions?? I would love to hear! 2016.03.30_ChicMamas_FINAL-19 Photo Credit: Kate Hauschka Photography
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