Hello Spring! It’s time to introduce our new parent of the season. Today we are celebrating a world traveling, fashion forward, full time mom who loves the Miami sunshine! Patty joins us to talk about everything from nighttime baby tips, her journey into motherhood, and memorable family traditions.
Welcome Patty! Thanks for being our Spring Parent of the Season!
Q. Can you tell us about yourself (interests, occupation, etc.)?
A: My husband and I own a property technology business, and I’m a full-time Mom. I enjoy weight training, walking in our beautiful neighborhood, making daytime plans with our friends, going out to see movies, crafting, hiking, mountain biking and cuddling with my dog.
Q. Tell us a bit about your family and what they mean to you:
A: My husband and I were only two years into dating when we got a dog, a new business and outfitted a jeep for camping and off-roading. In 2016 we moved to Miami for year-round warmth, a water view, and a diverse international atmosphere. We are important to each other because we love one other, obviously, but also because we only have each other in this part of the world. My husband was raised in California and Pennsylvania, and I have lived in 9 countries so far. Our families are everywhere except here, but this is the only place we want to be. Now I bask in the Latin culture, sunshine, glittering waters, and the beautiful people of this city!
Our legal marriage ceremony took place at the Miami Beach district court which did have its charm, however I decided that I wanted a big wedding! So, on our anniversary we celebrated with a “boatload” of friends and family. Literally, I mean on a boat, and it was a dream! During that time and throughout the pandemic we were trying to conceive. Finally, after one miscarriage and with a little help from hormone therapy we were successful with a baby boy! He is now 4 months old, the cutest I have ever seen and certainly the most smiley!
Our most recent milestone is sleeping through the night, thank heavens!
Q: Do you have any family or cultural traditions that you want to ensure you pass onto your children?
A: I want to be sure that my baby can speak at least one of my other languages. I think it helps with brain development and sensitivity to subtlety in meaning. I did promise my mom that my children will learn to speak Portuguese.
My parents took us traveling somewhere every summer. It didn’t need to be anything fancy or an educational trip. Sometimes they would take us to our cousin’s farm for the entire summer, which were the best vacations! This is a tradition I would like to continue. I think being exposed to different people in different situations, cultures and climates helps me appreciate things I would never have imagined. I would like my children to also gain empathy and open mindedness toward others.
My husband comes from a Spanish family heritage which he honors. His parents have perfected Spanish family recipes and we will continue that tradition with our own family. In fact, this week we are making paella. As my son gets older, he’ll have more and more responsibilities with preparing the family recipe. I’m sure he’ll make a few tweaks of his own!
Christmas traditions are cherished by my husband. They have memories relating to grandparents, kids, great food, and beautiful decorations that we will be passing on as well.
Q. What is your most memorable family moment?
A: So far, the birth of our son takes the cake! It was a water birth at a birthing center. My husband sat in the tub behind me to support my body and we were surrounded by the doula, the midwife with her assistant and my mother-in-law. It was a beautiful and relatively peaceful experience. Rather than an epidural, I used laughing gas. In place of overhead fluorescent lights, we had candles, and instead of all the incessant beeping in a hospital setting, we listened to jazz music while I pushed.
I am so grateful to have chosen this type of birthing experience!
Q. What is your personal style?
A: I am very feminine. I keep it tasteful, and I am a sucker for anything with bows, ruffles and the color pink! I like to wear my hair long. I never leave the house without a pair of earrings and don’t wash off my mascara until it is seconds before hitting the pillow at night.
Q. Where do you like to shop?
A. The highlights in my wardrobe are probably Ted Baker – great quality and fun – and Dian von Furstenberg – perfect fit. I also like to pepper in some interesting finds from White House Black Market and refresh with Rent the Runway. The rest of my wardrobe is filled with Nordstrom and Amazon Try Before You Buy. For comfortable heels, yes they do exists, I shop a Brazilian brand call Schultz. For bathing suits anything Brazilian as well.
Q. What about husband and kids?
A. My husband’s stores of choice are Ralph Lauren, especially when we were in the Northeast, and Orlebar Brown now that we’re in Miami. When I am in Brazil, I usually buy him a few pairs of linen pants from a store called Richards. He went from wearing suits in Philadelphia to casual but polished Mediterranean attire in Miami. As for the baby I started out trying to only get GOTS certified clothes and gear. He did end up with a lot of Burt’s Bees and Honest brand outfits. I chalk that up to first child overprotective paranoia! As cute as those outfits are, and I come from the fashion industry, they are just too….basic. I am now gaga for the likes of Janie & Jack. This child could not look more preppy, and I love it!
Q. Can you share your morning and nighttime routines with your kiddo?
A. In the mornings my husband takes the baby and gives him is first feeding. This gives me a chance to do what I want such as sleeping in, going to the gym, doctor appointments, house chores, etc. He will usually watch him all morning. Sometimes even during video calls for work!
Our evenings usually consist of quality time with the baby. Taking a walk, reading a book, bathing or just playing, then breastfeeding around 8 pm and putting him to bed. Then it is “free time” for hubby and me. We might make dinner, watch TV, or even just keep working. If my husband and I watch a TV show he’ll usually have the baby fall asleep on his chest. That’s the only situation where the baby will happily do tummy time for a prolonged period!
Even though my son is breast fed having my husband give him a bottle every morning has been so freeing. I can wake up as “me” and after a quick pump for the next morning’s bottle I go about my business. Then I take over parental duties in the late morning for the rest of the day.
Q. What mom tricks work for you that you can recommend others may give a try?
A. I know every child is different, but here are a few things that have worked for my baby and me:
When sleep training and/or transitioning out of bed-time swaddling, I recommend putting the baby to sleep on top of a Velcro strap made for swaddling. I have one that came with a wearable blanket. If the baby needs to be swaddled, you can easily wrap it around your baby while still in the crib, without much disruption. My baby sometimes startles awake, but if I wrap the swaddle strap around him and put his pacifier back in, he’ll be comforted and go right back to sleep. They may be waking up out of hunger, though. If you’re not sure if the baby is getting enough calories, feed them to be on the safe side!
If the baby is tired but is having trouble falling asleep, wiggle a pacifier or tap it gently in the baby’s mouth. Somehow, that gets my baby to pass out within a couple minutes.
Extra pump parts are often covered by insurance. Take what you can get because washing pump parts is torture. This way you can throw the parts in the dishwasher, and you still have extra sets for later.
If you’re the type that eats pizza, wings and French fries with a knife and fork (sorry, but I can’t stand getting my fingers dirty), then you’ll absolutely want to get a baby bum brush for applying ointment. You’ll never get that stuff under your nails!
“Studies show” that studies can often be wrong. So do whatever works for you.
Thank you Patty for taking the time to share your mom life with all of us, and for being our spring mom!