I started this blog five years ago today. While I haven’t been actively writing here for quite some time now, it seemed wrong to see the date marked on my calendar and not acknowledge it somehow. Even though I’m not posting regularly anymore, this blog is still an active entity and the recipes I published here are still being made, which I think is totally crazy and awesome. It’s still this thing that I created and love and think of often.
When I got pregnant, I imagined I’d continue creating and sharing recipes and start posting lots of things about my new life as a mother. For a long time I was still writing posts in my head and anxiously waiting for the time to begin typing them out, but the truth is that I just haven’t yet gotten to a place where taking that time to really write (and all the things that go along with that—recipe development, photography) feels like what I should be doing.
I’ve found that mothering in the way that feels best to me (which is not to say that it’s better than any other way) takes a lot of time and a lot of myself. And I’m okay with that. It wouldn’t feel right to me to do it differently. I’m a home-birthing, breastfeeding, cloth-diapering, babywearing, bed-sharing hippie and I love it. I mother with the knowledge that I will get more and more Me Time back as our son grows and try to enjoy all the ways he needs me now as deeply as I can—even when things are challenging.
And I’ve found other ways to channel my creativity in the meantime—things that don’t require the full attention and immediate response of lit burners and oven timers.
I mentioned a while back that I started sewing while I was pregnant. Well, I continued after Roman was born. There were many things we purchased for him that didn’t hold up well and that I knew could be made better, so I did. I made us cloth wipes to go with our diapers, changing pads to replace the ones that were literally crumbling after only a couple months’ use, burp cloths because I could, and hand-embroidered bodysuits for fun.
Sewing, it turns out, is very mommy-friendly. You can pick it up and put it down on a whim. Nothing’s going to burn or melt or turn brown. You’re not going to lose the light for that perfect photo or your train of thought while in the middle of a paragraph because someone else needs your attention right now. And—importantly—I really enjoy doing it. Since Roman only needs so many changing pads, I decided to open an Etsy shop so I could keep the needle going.
It’s been great so far. In addition to selling online, I’ve taken my stuff to a couple of markets, which was fun and which I plan to do again. I make things as I feel inspired, ship them as they sell, and take custom orders as they come in (I actually have three in the pipeline right now). It allows me to keep my Mom responsibilities as top priority while also continuing to create. I’ve realized that creating is a huge part of who I am, so it’s an important outlet for me.
The shop is called B&R Babywares if you want to take a peek. Inventory is a little low right now following the last market I attended, but you can get an idea of what I’ve been up to.
The R of B&R is doing amazingly. He is now 15 months old and is a happy, energetic, hilarious little boy. He’s obsessed with his books and always stops to marvel at the pages featuring tractors and trucks. He loves music and dancing and will belt his little heart out whenever his favorite song comes on. The copper-colored hair is holding fast. Every time we go out, we’re stopped at least once by someone who can’t resist telling us how beautiful it is; even people who are very obviously in a hurry have paused and leaned back to say “Gorgeous hair!” We tend to agree. He’s an utter joy and we feel so lucky that we get to be his parents.
And the latest news: About a month ago we purchased and moved into a condo in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. We decided to trade in almost 7 years of waterfront living and city skyline views in Long Island City for a 1-block walk to a big park with a greenmarket, a ton of nearby restaurants with gluten-free and vegan menu items, and half again as much square footage in a place that’s totally ours. There’s still a lot that needs to be done to make it exactly what we want, but we’re really happy. And, because we own it, we can do all those things, which was a huge part of why we wanted to buy in the first place.
Renting always kept us feeling slightly unsettled. You’re living in someone else’s space and you know that any wall you paint will have to be made white again, any nail you hammer into a wall will have to be patched over in a year or maybe two. You can buy that sofa because it fits perfectly in that little nook, but will it have a space in the next apartment, wherever that is? How moved in can you ever really be when you know that moving out is an inevitability? It feels so different now to live in a place that we own. Yes, all the little problems are now ours, but so are the possibilities. Every few days we look at each other and say, “We did good.”
So that’s where I’ve been and what I’ve been up to. Thank you for still visiting and making my recipes. (You guys really love the Buffalo Chickpea Dip! Can’t say I blame you, though.) I do read all of your comments and try to respond when I can. Each one brightens my day.
Hope you’ve been well, and Happy 5 Years to GF in the City!