This Grand Adventure: Chelsa-Bea

February 15, 2015

Motherhood at 6 Weeks

Welp, six weeks in and I’m writing my first blog post minus Mr. Henry’s birth announcement. Can it already be six weeks? Time feels like it is has both moved at a snail’s pace as well as warp speed. I’ve sat down to write this post about 10,000x’s but between feedings, lack of sleep and getting the groove of this parent thing, well you know. So here I am, finally able to get you all updated on life with our baby Huck while he takes his second morning nap and I pump off a bottle for Chase to give him before bed tonight.

Anyway, to give you a little insight on what’s going on at the Smith household, we are finally starting to get our feet under us. I say that very cautiously because just as soon as we feel like we’re getting the hang of this thing, well, the next day… not so much. But we are learning. Learning about our new life, learning to adjust expectations, learning to forgive, learning to ask for help (lots of help), learning to be more patient, learning what to do with a six week old, learning to stay away from mommy blogs, Facebook groups and Dr. Google when we don’t know what to do and, lots and lots and lots of learning to trust our instinct. Learning how to un-learn what I thought was multi-tasking. Doing one thing at a time seems to accomplish more than trying to do it all at the same time. For someone who once considered herself a world-class multi-tasker, this is a hard lesson to unlearn.

Henry is thriving. He is an incredible baby, but of course, I’m biased. The kid has almost doubled his birth weight in six weeks. Woah. Apparently, babies typically hit this landmark by the first 5-6 months. But no, not my kid, he’s an overachiever like his Mom and Dad. No wonder we basically didn’t sleep for the first three weeks of his life because the kid was ALWAYS eating. But things are slowing down and my little chub-ster is already filling out his 0-3 month clothing and starting to move into a few of his 3-6 month items. He’s a very chill baby but will tell you when he’s not into something or a little uncomfortable. He rocks at napping in his stroller, his Boba carrier and most of the time his crib (yippee!). He’s obsessed with looking at the gallery wall in our living room and the stars on the wall in his nursery. He's started to social smile and just recently began changing his newborn squeaks into little coo's. We try and make a least one outing a day and so far have visited The  Public Market, the indoor botanical gardens, the Art Museum, two different mom’s groups and several different restaurants.

And how is this Mama doing? Well, every day is better. And, every day I’m falling more and more in love with my little boy. Each week, if not each day, I’m introduced to a new and more wide-eyed and wonderful Henry. The last six weeks have been the longest and the quickest six weeks of my life. I now understand why they say nothing can truly prepare you for parenthood because no matter how many books or blog posts I read, no matter how much advice I’ve gotten, no matter any of it, there’s nothing that could have prepared me for motherhood. Learning to be a parent is really scary. I didn’t realize how much I would truly have to trust my gut and I’m only 6 weeks in. Woah. I’m not sure what I thought it would be like but I never realized how much I would have to have faith that whatever decision I make, regardless of what other says or think, is the right decision for my family.

Thankfully, oh so thankfully, my amazing networks of friends and family across the country have been here for us. I have never been so grateful in my life. Whether it’s been via text, email, or a late night phone call, Facetime, running to the grocery store, bringing lunch, sending care packages or coming over to hold the baby so I can take a nap. Saying yes to help has been hard but I have never been more appreciative. I cannot say it enough but I am forever, forever grateful to my friends and family for all the love, support and help they have provided us in the last 3 weeks. When they say “it takes a village to raise a child” this is no joke. I am so very, very thankful for my village.

What else have I learned in the last six weeks? Well, despite how scary being a parent may be, it’s also one of the most beautiful and extraordinary things I have ever done. While there are certainly moments where I have questioned what I’ve gotten myself into there is nothing on earth like holding my newborn next to my chest and realizing that somehow, by some type of miracle, Chase and I created this person. It’s so surreal and wonderful.

If you're interested in more regular updates I've been sharing lots of photos over on Facebook and Instagram

January 7, 2015

Welcome Baby Henry

Henry William stepped out to meet the world on January 1, 2015 at 3:14 in the afternoon weighing 6 lbs. 14 oz. and 21 in.

We could not be happier with our new addition and although a bit sleep deprived, our family has never felt more complete. My mama heart is bursting with love for this little man. I could never have imagined that my New Year would start off so perfectly.

From the absolute bottom of my heart, thank you to everyone for your kind emails, texts, phone calls, visits and letters. I have never felt so loved and supported. The generosity and kindness of our family and friends continues to astonish and amaze me. And although I hate using this word, I feel truly, truly blessed and grateful to be bringing Henry into a world filled with so much love.

December 29, 2014

Bumpdate - 38 Weeks

38 Week Bumpdate
photo courtesy of Kate Weinstein

Oh hey! Remember me. Oh ya, I blog here every once in awhile. Just hanging out and being pregnant over here. We’re full turn ya’ll. 38 weeks! Woot! Woot! Actually, 38 weeks and 3 days to be exact, but who’s counting. I mean, this babe is only supposed to be here in 11 – count ‘em - 11 days. Let’s cross our fingers on that one. Like seriously cross and say a prayer. Of course, we totally wouldn't mind if this little bundle decided to show up teensy bit early. This mama likes things early or on time, and I’m sincerely hoping that our little one doesn’t take after Chase and show up a bit late. I’m prepping myself for it all at this point.

On that note, are we ready? I would say I’m prepared. Probably over prepared actually. The nursery is done. The car seat is installed. The stroller is ready to rock. Our hospital bags are packed and ready to head out the door. We’ve taken the birthing and breast-feeding courses. I’ve read about a million mom-blog posts about birth, bringing baby home and body post baby. And now, I just wait. Which of course is probably one of the greatest lessons in patience I have ever had to endure. And I consider myself to be a patient person, but I feel like life is constantly trying to teach me to be more and more patient. I feel like I’m getting ready for the biggest and best party of my life but have no idea what time it’s going to start. It's exceptionally wonderful and complete torture all at once.

Pregnancy since my last update has been a bit more challenging. Early on I couldn’t understand why women are so ready to be done being pregnant. My pregnancy had truly been so easy and blissful. And in some ways it still is. I love every moment this baby moves in my belly, and I couldn’t love my bump more. But friends, these last few weeks, they’ve been tough. Heartburn, swelling, fatigue, SI joint and round ligament pain, tiny baby feet giving little kicks under my ribs. Yup, all those “pregnancy symptoms” that I so joyously ignored for 7-8ish month came roaring in all at once about 3 weeks ago. I’ve been trying to stay positive and upbeat and grateful to have this baby in my tummy but that doesn’t mean that some days it isn’t really tough.  I know that these aches, pains and discomfort are fleeting and in just a few weeks the swelling will be gone and I’ll have my baby to hold in my arms. And when the moments get really rough, I try to breath through it, focusing and telling myself, “Your body was made for this You can do this. Stay strong.” While it doesn’t fix everything, it does actually help. 

So, now I’m afraid this baby will forget it’s supposed to come out. My logical and very intelligent husband reminds me that the baby doesn’t get a choice and that it will come out no matter what. But I’m so ready, so ready to hold this baby in my arms and love on it. I’m ready for the challenges (or at least I think I am?) of being a new parent and sharing in this adventure with my husband. It’ll just be the two of us for the first few weeks, depending on when this babe decides to arrive. And as scary as that sounded early on, I think it’ll be good for the 3 of us to get to know one another. For us to get to share this special time together and form our family. But I really can't wait to share Baby D with our family and friends and welcome it to the world!

And don't worry, whenever baby decides to arrive, I'll make sure you all have a heads up whether it's here or on Facebook or Instagram. Until then, may you all have a fantastic New Year and thanks for a wonderful 2014! Here's to a fabulous 2015!

November 24, 2014

Last Minute Thanksgiving Menu Ideas

Delicious Thanksgiving Sage and Sausage Stuffing | Recipe by

Remember when I used to be a food blogger? Me, too. Last year I was killing it on the Thanksgiving front and posted some seriously delish family recipes. This year...well, you know the impending baby and crazy schedules, and such. We' will be spending Thanksgiving sans family once more but we'll be amongst some dear friends. I'll be making my amazing Sage and Sausage Stuffing (pictured above) and these phenomenal Soft Brioche Pull-Apart Buns.

Just in case you were perusing the Internets and looking for some last minute Thanksgiving items to share on your holiday menu, I figured I was share with you all of my Thanksgiving recipes from last year! You can't go wrong with any of these. Promise.

Fancy Green Bean Casserole | Recipe by

Seriously phenomenal Fancy Green Bean Casserole. I will be making a small portion of this for us to have around the house just so I can eat the leftovers. YUM!

Nantucket Cranberry Pie Thanksgiving Dessert | Recipe at

And this Nantucket Cranberry Pie for Thanksgiving dessert. Yes, please.

Leftover Thanksgiving Mashed Potato Beer Cheese Soup | Recipe by

And, if you're looking for something incredible to make with all of your Thanksgiving leftovers, then look no further than this Mashed Potato Beer Cheese Soup. Sooooo good. I may just have to make a batch of mashed potatoes so we can have some of this around the when Baby D decides to make an appearance.

Happy Thanksgiving, my friends. Hope your holiday is filled with fabulous food, friends and family! Much love!