Wednesday, October 31, 2012

{Fortuna Family Happenings}: Avengers Halloween 2012

      This is the first year that I think everyone is looking forward to trick-or-treat. Last year was a mess. I made our own Transformers costumes out of cardboard boxes. Since Sky was just under 2 years old, I assumed he wouldn't want to wear a box costume, so I bought him the regular "Ironhide" costume from the store. Not understanding the concept of Halloween yet, he refused to put it on. So Brian carried him in his normal clothes and since Brian was carrying him the whole time, Brian could not wear his Optimus Prime box costume I slaved over. It was a temporary buzz kill.
     This year is much different. Both Coral and Sky are ecstatic. Sky is very much into the costume/dressing up thing and his love for Captain America runs deep. He's been carrying around his  shield everywhere for months now. It's been his little security blanket {this worn-out shield pictured is actually the second one we had to buy after he left his first one at the zoo in San Diego}. Since I bought their costumes a few month before Halloween, we've had plenty of practice. SO much practice in fact, that Sky's costume is literally ripping to shreds after his daily wearing and washing {It will be a surprise that I bought him a brand new one to wear tonight.} 
       Coral wanted to  be "Black Spiderman" or Venom. He has no idea that it's the "bad spiderman" so we just went with it. As for Brian, Baby Ocean and my costumes... Sky had designated us to be the rest of the Avenger crew. Daddy will be Thor {pretty perfect with his long blonde hair}, Ocean will be a "Baby Hulk" and Mommy will be that Black Widow lady {I still have no idea what I'll wear, but I guess I have the red hair thing going}. 

    {Brian was able to get only a short window off of work tonight to trick-or-treat so I am not sure if we will be able to get photos of the entire crew. }
I hope everyone has a safe and
H A P P Y   H A L L O W E E N
With love,
Maryam

Monday, October 29, 2012

Exercise Routine for Breastfeeding Mothers with Erica from Mi Todo Blog

    Really excited about this special guest post from one of our lovely sponsors, Erica from Mi Todo! She is another Oahu mommy blogger and former fitness trainer. I have been in awe (jaw dropping awe) of her post baby physique. I asked if she would share some tips and tricks for us breastfeeding moms who want to stick to a fitness routine while breastfeeding. THANK YOU ERICA!

Aloha! My name is Erica. I am a first-time mom to a 7-month-old baby and I blog over at Mi Todo (MyEverything). Before moving to Hawaii (the second time) for law school, I was a certified personal trainer in Encinitas, California. I love helping people get in shape and meet their fitness goals. Part of my blog is dedicated to fitness during and after pregnancy, so Maryam asked me to share a breastfeeding-friendly fitness routine.

A common misconception is that breastfeeding is all that is needed to get fit after having a baby. While this might be true for a lucky few, it is not always the case.  Yes, breastfeeding torches calories and generally takes this energy from fat stores, but unless you keep your calorie intake relatively high, your supply will likely suffer.

This does not mean that you can eat whatever you want, and it also doesn’t mean that you can’t diet or exercise. Getting fit while breastfeeding requires a balance that is unique to each mother. So before I go on to talk about exercise, I want to address this issue of supply. Typically, a nursing mother can do the same types of exercises as anyone else. What will have to be adjusted is the diet. This requires you to listen to your body and figure out what you and your baby need. I recommend keeping a food journal, and writing down each and every item of food you eat throughout the day. MyFitnessPal is an excellent (and free) online food journal. You can use a calculator like this one to get a general idea of how many calories you need while nursing. I recommend slowly decreasing your calorie intake (from your current intake) until you find your sweet spot. If your supply becomes unacceptably low, increase the amount of calories. Find a “calorie budget” that works for you. As far as the types of food you eat, I recommend a 40-40-20 protein to carb to fat ratio. This is easier than it sounds. Just make sure you have 4-6oz of lean protein and one serving of complex carbohydrates with each meal. You can read more about my nutrition plan here.

Actually, because I’ve also already posted a very detailed workout routine here (and this post is getting a bit long), I’ll speak in more generalities when it comes to exercise as well. I’m a big proponent of good ol fashion cardio and weightlifting. Fad diets and exercises come and go, but traditional bodybuilding has always and will always remain- because it works. Weight training builds muscle, which raises your metabolism and allows you to burn more fat throughout the day. Weight training alone will not make you “bulky” (supplements are required for women to achieve that look). Instead, it will make your body firm and youthful. You should weight train each body part at least once a week, and perform around 30 minutes of cardio 4-6 days per week.

One potential problem for breastfeeding women is sore or heavy breasts. My cardiovascular exercise of choice is running, so I know how achy boobies can ruin a good workout. What I did was wear three (yes, three) sports bras while running. When I finished my run, I would immediately take off the extra bras. I would also shower as soon as possible to keep my boobies clean and prevent infection. If running is too much for you, try a low-impact exercise like cycling. Just remember to keep your heart rate up and break a sweat!

For a detailed diet and exercise program, visit my blog and check out my Post-Baby Body Bootcamp plan! If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me at mitodoblog [at] gmail.com.

Friday, October 26, 2012

{The Sakura Bloom Sling Diaries}: Delight


     I am very honored to be joining 14 other stellar families in Sakura Bloom's second edition of the Sling Diaries. For the next six months, I will be chronicling Ocean's life and growth as he's perched up with me in his sling. Each month there will be a different theme to reflect on and this month, the theme is delight. {I am wearing the Simple Silk sling in Amber.}

Oh my dear Ocean baby,
      At just three months old, the sling has been your safe haven. Ever since you were just a few days old, you've curled up happily inside your sling, just as you did in mommy's belly. Mommy keeps you safe and close so you can snooze off into baby sleepyland. You sleep and she plays with your big brothers, cooks dinner and even picks up toys with her toes. You've already slept close to mommy's heart on two airplanes, at the safari park (twice), on a mountain hike, on our walks on the beach, to the mailbox and to name a few.
     Now that you've grown into a wide-eyed, smiley little 3 month old, you've delighted in your ability to take all these new sights in. No longer do you only hear the dull sounds surrounding Mommy's heartbeat and the murmur of her voice. Now you can hold your head up strong and use your beautiful baby blue eyes to see all the new colors and shapes in your environment. The first second you lock in on a familiar face, your eyes light up and you give a huge grin. You really are a joyful little baby and a true delight to get to know.  
With my whole heart,
Mommy

Photo Credit: Amelia Samari

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

{Breastfeeding in Style}: Comfy Sweaters

Breastfeed in Style: Comfy Sweaters

Breastfeed in Style: Comfy Sweaters by milkfriendly

      As the weather is starting to cool off (in most parts of the world), sweater wearing is in order. When you have a breastfeeding baby in tow, you want to be comfortable, stylish and have the effortless ability to feed the baby whenever need be. If the sweater has a sheerness to it, and you want to cover up, you can pair it will a nursing tank like this one from Yummie (I have one, and it's amazing), or you can go with a regular nursing bra, or a sweet lacy unconventional breastfeeding bralette {I adore all of Free People's "bandeaus", "bralettes" and "cropped" bras.}
     And I love knit sweaters as much as the next girl, but finding one that you can easily pull up to nurse the babe isn't always that easy to find. Here's a few "easy-up" knit sweaters that I am loving.
$58
$98

$58
$128
$68
$108
Happy Sweater Shopping!

With love,
Maryam

Monday, October 22, 2012

{Fortuna Family Happenings}: Our San Diego Trip Part 1

Sky always showing love by holding "earries"
Coral said he had his hands in his pockets like Justin Beiber- ha!
     I wanted to share a few photos from our recent trip back to San Diego. Even though we had planned to come back after Ocean was born, it turned out to be a very spontaneous trip and we ended up booking the flight 2 days before we flew out. Two days to pack the bags for now a family of five and prep the house to be gone for weeks on end. It was some sort of miracle that we were able to stuff the last item in our bags, lock up the house and hand a bag of perishable foods to the airport shuttle driver (to which he was very delighted) just as he pulled up on the driveway. 
    The five something hour flight was pretty easy peezy. We've been traveling with the boys since they were young, so we have a little system that we stick to. Ocean was a happy little clam in his sling and hardly made a peep the whole flight. 
     Our plane got in super late, so we booked a cheap hotel before we stayed with our lovely family friends who had just bought and renovated their gorgeous new home. My friend Pardis is a superb hostess. She cooked us some delicious Persian meals and made us feel more than welcome with our brood of boys. {Check out the amazing service she's offering Moms in the San Diego area}.You can tell what a loving and present mother she is by merit of her smart and affectionate daughter, Pania. The boys really adored little Pania. They enjoyed exploring some of her girly toys and relished in their park-like backyard. It was such a pleasant first part of our trip to be able to blend in with such a wonderful little family.

This was just the first week of three, so there will be more from the rest of our trip soon.

With love,
Maryam

Monday, October 15, 2012

Breastfeeding in Style: Just Zip It

     When breastfeeding, one of my rules is: If it zips, then you buy it. Easiest of easy-open breastfeeding access there is. This top from ASOS is only $31.66 and is both in the "easy-open" and "easy-up"category. A few other simple accessories like these spike earrings from Stella & Dot (on sale for $17.40) and this military jacket and I'd say you're set for Fall.
Breastfeeding in Style: Zip It


Warehouse sleeveless top / Military jacket / Belabumbum / Forever 21 jeans / Print shoes / Stella & Dot spike earrings

Do you like to zip it?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Breastfeeding in Style: Ease into Fall

     Hi Friends!!
Long time no blog! I feel really bad for everyone who's dropped in here and found zilch, absolutely zilch. My apologies run deep, especially to the sweet readers who've actually emailed me to see if I was still alive (to whom I am very thankful).
      Ocean is already 3 months old, can ya believe it? Yeah, neither can I. And I have to say he is a complete and utter joy. Our families were here and then we had some more visitors and then we took a completely last minute trip back to San Diego to see family and friends. So we are finally starting to settle back into life here in Hawaii and getting our groove going as a family of five.
This onesie was a gift from my friend, thegrommom before Ocean was named. Pretty perfect, right?!
*****
     Now having been away from blogging for so long, I felt a little nervous on where to begin. I have a boat load of photos of Ocean and the boys, a ton of post-partum care and breastfeeding stuff... all things I would really want to share at some point. But with all the catching up I had to do, I just got a little stuck on where to even begin. So, I started with what felt like me, where this blog started in the first place, something that comes very easily to me, and that my friends, is putting together an imaginary outfit.
     I think the fall season is everyone's fav and I am really feeling the street-versus-fancy thing, {if that is even a thing}. Even though I have similar items sitting in my closet at the moment, I live in Hawaii where it's 80 degrees and humid all year long, so the chances of me being able to wear this is very slim. Thus, imaginary outfit blog posting it is.
Breastfeeding in Style: Fall 2012



     I have to say that being a new mom is incredibly challenging {it really is}. You take care of the baby, the home, your relationships, do the laundry, cook, you're up all night and the list goes on and on. The simple task of getting dressed can be pretty daunting. And I believe that just becoming a mom doesn't mean you have to sacrifice your style in any way. I want to help make it easy and most importantly, for you to feel confident as a strong, stylish, breastfeeding mom. You need easy pieces that you can turn to when in doubt {and in my case, wear them over and over}. One of those simple pieces you need in your closet is a chambray/denim button up top (so if you don't have one, get one). They are cute, easy to wear and completely Milk-Friendly. There are a ton of price ranges and styles to chose from, so if you see one and it fits, buy it. I especially like the snap button kind because it is truly liberating {and easy} to be able to rip it open to feed the baby. Be careful not to get used to it though, I recently broke off a few buttons of a top because I was so used to just breaking free to feed.
Chambray

Chambray by milkfriendly featuring pocket shirts
Click the links to shop!
oh, and if you're still around, thank you. I hope to keep this train a-movin'!

With love,
Maryam
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