Tag Archives: We’re Moms Too

We’re Moms Too: Watching Her Learn

Watching Her Learn

Written by Ashley

It’s amazing in how in just 14 short months I’ve watched my daughter grow into a giggling and babbling mobile little girl. The milestones I’ve witnessed are incredible – from rolling over, to sitting up, to pulling herself up, to cruising, and now just moments away from her first independent step. She amazes me every day. She’s developed her own little personality and loves to play chase, zoom up the stairs, try new foods and play with her puppy. She also enjoys learning, and I am amazed to see her develop her fine and gross motor skills through play. My husband and I try to expose her to new sights and sounds every chance we get. From playgrounds and festivals to ball games and museums, the more she sees, the more she learns.

This past weekend we visited the Great Lakes Science Center. And while my husband may have played with the exhibits more than her, she learned a great deal. Watching her face light up as she looked at the exhibits, from bubbles and gears to electricity and spaceships, reiterated how important it is to us as parents for her to have these experiences as a child.

Playing With Blocks

It’s not every day I see her use her tiny pointer finger to turn the gears without me showing her how. Nor is it every day that a smile as wide as her ears appears as she slides down a slide. And it’s certainly not every day she gets to try on her own space suit.

Space Baby

I often wonder what she’s thinking and how the human brain develops from infancy to adulthood (I was never good at science). For her to just grasp things, follow our lead, say a new word; it boggles my mind. How does she know that her play food isn’t real food when she “eats” it? How does she know that “doggie” really means her furry friend? How does she know that by flashing me a huge, bright smile, I’ll smile?

Early childhood development is incredible. I am grateful to be there to see her learn something new, to see the gears in her head turn as she figures out that can knock down the blocks, turn her ride-on toy to prevent her from bumping into the wall, and push down on the princess castle to make the princesses talk. While she may be learning something new each day, as am I. I learn each day how to love even more just when I don’t think I have any more room in my heart; how to be patient; how to be comforting; how to be encouraging; how to be a mom.

WM2_AshleyAbout Ashley
Ashley is a self-proclaimed fashionista, social media maven, and proud new mama. Together with her husband, they welcomed their first child last August. They also have a fur-baby named Peak, an 80-lb. yellow lab whom they adopted during a ski trip in Denver. She is the Social Media Manager at Step2 and you may have recently communicated with her if you’ve chatted with Step2 on Facebook or Twitter.

We’re Moms Too: Cry Baby

MomsTooButton Cry Baby
By: Meghan

Last week we experienced a number of firsts at our house. My 18 month old uttered her first full sentence:  “No Mommy,” proving that she’s going to give us a run for our money. I broke down and bought our first family calendar to mount in our kitchen, admitting that I can’t in fact keep it all in my head. And Clara, our spunky 3 year old, started preschool.

My plan was to take Clara on her first day, and then head to a nearby coffee shop to get some work done, before picking her up for that abbreviated first day. Clara had been in daycare from an early age so this wasn’t her first experience at school.  Nor was it my first time dropping her off with teachers I didn’t know, in a classroom that seemed so foreign. But this was a different school and it all seemed more grown up. Clara seemed to know that too.  She had her new glitter shoes, her backpack, and her lunch box (mind you school only lasted until 10:30 this first day, but the empty lunchbox was going with us no matter what!)

Clara first day

As a walked into the school I noticed a tent outside with moms socializing underneath, coffee cups in hand and toddlers and babies hanging in strollers nearby.  I later learned it was the Parent Committee, hosting a first day drop in coffee hour for new or weepy moms and dads.

Clara practically skipped ahead of me into her classroom.  There was nothing not to love. First things first they greeted Clara with a hug and then walked her over to the miniature sink to wash her hands, so the day could begin. The room was set up like a cozy home, with cushions and book corners and a nature themed at every bend.  Clara found her nametag and headed over to art corner where she got busy exploring. I looked at the teacher, who looked back at me and said “She seems quite comfortable”…. And I couldn’t disagree. After I watched her for a few minutes, I walked back to sneak a hug and kiss, and then onwards towards  the door. Clara didn’t skip a beat. She didn’t even turn her head but kept exploring her new environment.

As I headed out I found myself choking up.  Her teacher waved and said softly, “There’s a bench down the hall if you need it.”  I kept going, through the hallway and past the school administrators who were taking all the necessary paperwork and permissions and out the doors into the courtyard.   At this point, the tears were visibly rolling down my cheeks.  I couldn’t hold it in.

I wondered why I was so sad about Clara. Its not that I wanted her to be running after me through the hallway; I was so proud she just dove right in. Still, I couldn’t help but feel like this was the beginning of the end. First preschool,  then college.   As I was fast forwarding through the next 15 years and all the other teary moments I would have,  a mom touched my arm and introduced herself.   And a moment later,  I was following her over to the tent  to make a few mom friends and dry up my own tears.

Have any of you had eventful first days of school with your kiddos that you want to share?


About Meghan
892Meghan is the Communication and Licensing Director at Step2. Meghan is a mom to three little girls, all under the age of 5, who are best friends and worst enemies at the same time. Meghan, married to her husband of 8 years, loves to travel, try new foods, and has recently become a big fan of Downtown Abby. It’s a real treat when she and husband get a babysitter and over-order at their favorite sushi restaurant.


We’re Moms Too: Planning Our First Birthday Party

We're Moms Too

Written by Tena

We are in the process of planning our first birthday party for our son Myles; not to be confused with planning a birthday party for his first birthday.  Confused?  Probably not half as confused as I typically am with planning events!

There are those of us who enjoy entertaining; making food for large groups of people and getting family and friends together for celebrations.  Then, there are people like me.  I have anxiety about planning events; specifically around planning events at my house.  Is it too dusty?  Is there cat hair on the couch? Does anyone have dietary restrictions?   Will my childhood friends get along with my mommy friends?  Will my family embarrass me in front of my co-workers? How much food is enough?  How many variations of beverages should I offer?  The list is endless  as to what I will find to stress out about so it should come as no surprise that I am not a fan of entertaining.

Because of this irrational fear (logically I know it is irrational) it is no wonder I skipped on having a bash for my son’s first birthday.  Last year, I wanted his birthday to be low key and with immediate family.  I wanted to enjoy every single second of his day and not stress about it in the least.  That didn’t happen.  We had other, unforeseen circumstances that I ended up stressing about.  Stressing is part of who I am and while I’m hoping that I will outgrow it (maybe when I’m in my 40’s or 50’s) for now, I have decided to embrace it.  That decision has led me to planning a party for Myles’ second birthday.

Much to my surprise, I am actually having some fun planning this event.  I’ve found small ways to manage my stress level; like having the party two weeks after his actual birthday so that we can still have a nice family celebration together.  Additionally, I am having the party at a park instead of at my house.  I planned the party for the middle of the afternoon to avoid a typical “meal time” and have also strategically planned around his nap schedule.  I am making Mac N’ Cheese (his favorite food) and serving it in martini glasses and offering some grown up topping options (like bacon, tomatoes, and onions).  The party theme is Monsters, Inc. (ever since we’ve introduced him to Movie and Pizza Night, it has been Monsters, Inc. every Friday night).  I am serving cake balls (cake pops without the stick because I find the sticks too difficult) and Sprite with colored ice cubes to drink or water.

For activities, I am not planning anything too grand.  Myles enjoys dancing so we have rented a speaker to hook up to the iPad and will be downloading kidz bop volumes 20 – 23 to our iTunes account.  Since we are having it at a park, the kids can also play on the swing sets and I may decide to bring over a few Step2 toys that we gave him as birthday presents.  I am actually excited for the party and hoping it will be a huge success.

When we celebrated on his actual birthday this past Sunday, I told him that I wanted to make a wish too.  My wish for him is that every birthday he has is better than the last; whatever that means to him.  I am confident that I can help that to come true by becoming less of a basket case with each passing year, or at least finding ways to manage around it.

What is your wish for your children?


We're Moms Too
Tena and her best friend (and hubby) had their first child in July, 2011. Their little guy has a congenital heart defect and he is one tough little cookie; don’t ever think about calling him sick though – “his plumbing is just different.” Tena is an animal loving vegetarian and is excited to teach her son about compassion and the importance of volunteer work. She secretly hopes her son will be left handed like his momma. She is the Online Marketing Director for Step2.