10 year momiversary

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There’s nothing like becoming a mom for the first time! It’s magical and demanding and surprising and exhausting all at once. I’ve been a mom for almost a decade now, (hard to believe) and as I reflect back on that long journey from the birth of my first baby to my current toddler in training I realize just how much I’ve changed and how much I’ve learned. Inspired by a local group of moms and in honor of mother’s day …

 

30 things I’ve learned since becoming a mom

 

 

 

  1. I can recite by heart several children’s books
  2. I’ve learned how to talk a fearful child off a ledge, out of a car or into a pool.
  3. I have bionic hearing
  4. But I can also focus like a laser & block out the sound of crying, fighting or screaming
  5. I’ve learned to laugh at myself and not take life too seriously
  6. That being a kid is fun
  7. That being a kid is hard
  8. I’ve learned to clean up a living room from trashed to tidy in 5 minutes flat
  9. I can sleep sitting up
  10. I’ve learned that dad’s aren’t moms and that’s a good thing
  11. That reheated coffee tastes just fine
  12. How to deal with & teach to different learning styles
  13. I can do almost anything with one hand
  14. I’ve learned that 8 yr old boys can be very annoying but still lovable
  15. It doesn’t take much to be a hero for a day in your child’s eyes
  16. I have lightning fast reflexes
  17. I’ve learned that date night is of paramount importance
  18. To embrace chaos
  19. That every cliché rings true when you’re a mom
  20. That teaching a baby to climb the stairs is very boring but also very important
  21. I’ve learned how to make the perfect crepes
  22. And that you can’t take too many pictures of a three-year old
  23. I’ve rediscovered the value of time spent alone to recharge
  24. To get what I get and not throw a fit
  25. I’ve learned that I can function like a pro on minimal sleep
  26. That variety is the spice of life
  27. That you need a team to raise a child
  28. I’ve learned how to nurture and serve others and enjoy it
  29. How to be proud and humble at the same time
  30. And finally, to have grace for other moms, especially my own!

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!


my inner archivist presents the ultimate baby book

baby-bookI like to think that all mom’s have specialties, maybe you have a passion for cooking and you pass on your love and knowledge of food to your lucky offspring. Or maybe you’re a talented teacher, taking every opportunity to expand your children’s minds.  I have friends who impart their love of the great outdoors and gardening to their kids.

 

If I had to think of my own specialty it’s probably the archiving of my kid’s childhood. I take a lot of pictures but I also try to do it in a strategic way that enhances the fun times and doesn’t take away from being in the moment with them. I take annual pictures, conduct birthday interviews, have long-term projects in the works to give them upon highschool graduation and we cherish many, many other traditions. I believe I’m building their memory of childhood. I want them to look back and never ever doubt that their mom, dad and family loved and valued them!

 

As I said in my book, one’s inner archivist often emerges when you are expecting your first child (or at least it did for me). One of the things I’m most proud of is my children’s baby books. Like all kids, my boys love looking at a book that is all about them.  You can see the delight in their eyes as we cuddle and re-live their entrance into the world and the many details of their first year of life.

 

So many times parents take a million photos of baby #1, a few less of the next child and when additional siblings come along parents are too busy or exhausted to keep up with it. I had a friend tell me that her mom actually tried to pass off a photo of her older sister as her. So my aim when I created my first son’s book was making something that I would be able to repeat several times, no matter how many kids I was blessed with.  I didn’t make it perfect and I didn’t include every photo I had but, I was thorough. I didn’t want my last child to feel like he or she got the shaft because I got over-eager with my first child.

 

I also love to help other mom’s be the hero and archive their children’s lives. I once typed out a complete list of ‘how to make a baby book’ for a friend who was admiring my kid’s books. So I thought I’d share that list with you too. If you kept a pregnancy journal you can store it with/in the baby book. I did this but also copied short excerpts onto certain pages as it was appropriate.

 

Journaling about your pregnancy & birth experiences will give your book a personal tone and add to the archive quality. Plus your impending lack of sleep will soon make these amazing experiences a distant, faded memory.

 

Include any or all of the following information & items in your child’s baby book:

  • Baby’s full name with origin & meaning
  • Birth date, time, doctor’s name & birth location
  • Baby’s weight & length
  • A sample of the Birth Announcement
  • First photographs of baby & photographs taken during labor & birth

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  • Records of birth from the hospital (you can request these from the hospital)
  • Hospital bracelets & umbilical cord clamp (or photos of them if you’re making a digital book)
  • Contraction timing notes
  • JOURNAL: About who was in the labor room & what it felt like to see baby for the first time
  • Photos and cards from hospital visitors
  • List of gifts & flowers received in the first few days
  • Copy of your personal birth plan

 

When you look back 10 years later it will blow your mind how much life has changed since baby arrived so including who was there at the beginning & keeping scraps from that time of life will become extra special.

 

  • JOURNAL: The story of your birth experience. How did your child enter the world?
  • Birth certificate (or a photocopy)
  • Social Security card (or a photocopy)
  • Photos of nursery & baby’s first house. In one of my child’s books our house is covered in snow and it really sets the tone of when he entered our world. JOURNAL: About setting up the nursery, inspirations, special touches, who helped
  • Photos of family and friends holding baby for the first time 
  • JOURNAL: About what family and friends did to welcome baby, meals, gifts, time off work, watching other kids etc
  • Several pregnant photos of mom’s growing belly. The first time you’re pregnant you’ll probably have a huge collection of side-view photos of your evolving figure.
  • JOURNAL: About what it felt like to be pregnant, physically, emotionally, and how you felt as a couple expecting a child

 

Each pregnancy is as unique as the child it produces and should be recorded for posterity

 

  • Ultrasounds photos JOURNAL: About the day of the ultrasound and what you felt if you found out the sex
  • Baby shower invitations, photos, cards and lists of gifts  JOURNAL: Who was there and the general experience
  • The world around baby (include top news stories, trends in popular culture, cut outs from fashion magazines of the day, gas prices etc.)

 

Trends in popular culture are a particularly entertaining thing to look back on when your child is  15, 20 or 30.

 

  • Journal entries, dates and photos (if possible) of baby’s ‘BIG FIRSTS’ (bath, solid food, rolling over, walking, words etc.)
  • First holidays (including photos & cards)
  • Baptism or dedication photos, cards & certificates
  • Family Tree
  • Growing baby photos of baby each month of the first year (there are so many creative and pinteresting ways to do this, here’s what one clever mama did)
  • Well-baby check up dates, including weight, height and head measurements and percentages (some pre-made albums have a page available to record these items).
  • Immunization record/blood type
  • First Birthday, including party invitation, photos & cards
  • JOURNAL: A summary of the first year with baby and your feelings at the first birthday

 

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Now this is my version of the Ultimate Baby Book list and obviously very thorough. Including everything can be daunting so pick what is important to you and record the precious details that will soon be forgotten in the busy realities of parenthood. And keep in mind that you want the book itself to be durable so that little hands can enjoy it for years to come.

 

One of my favorite tools for recording the first year of life is a calendar. Use your regular wall calendar or purchase a pretty, printable version like the Fractions of Baby’s First Calendar.   Keep it handy and jot down those darling firsts as they happen. The best thing about the printable version is that you can three-hole punch it or tuck it into a clear sleeve and add it right into the baby book! I’ve given this printable calendar to several moms as their paper bliss gift and it’s always a huge hit!

 

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I will be honest and admit that I too am guilty of procrastination when it comes to this task. My youngest’s book is still in mid-assembly and she’s just turned 3 years old.  But sharing this list with you has motivated me to get it done and I can’t wait to share it with her!

 

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What do you use to archive your children’s lives? And what are your favorite paper gifts to give and receive?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


gift bliss basket

6322995_xxlWondering about the friend who is due soon and her baby shower is fast approaching? Is it too late to give her bliss? Of course not, a baby shower is the perfect opportunity to put together a bliss basket. A bliss basket contains a gift from each symbol and is a fun way to introduce the new tradition. (If you’re new to the concept yourself, you can read more here) Plus, I always feel like gift baskets give the recipient a little more bang for her buck!

Fill a basket or stylish container of your choosing with all seven bliss symbols and give it at the shower. I like to be sure my ‘basket’ doubles as the wood or cotton gift. For example, fill your wood diaper caddy with a cotton swaddle blanket, baby lotion, a miniature photo frame, a silver coin bank, and a pile of homemade chocolate chip cookies for the food symbol. The guide to bliss makes a perfect paper gift to share the background of the tradition with the expectant mom. If you want to skip the shameless promotion of my book you can find a bunch of clever paper gift ideas here. And, viola, you have a wow-factor gift to present your friend.

 

 

Baby showers are a great way to share the gift bliss tradition with family and friends.

 

Here’s a set of free printable gift bliss tags to make your basket complete! Go ahead and drag them onto your desktop, print on card stock, cut and attach to each gift!

gift bliss free printables

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope you enjoy the freebie! For more gift ideas feel free to visit our gift bliss Pinterest boards.

What will you put in a bliss basket?


it’s a movement | gift cotton

month 5 - cotton

 

I’ve been surprised and delighted in the last few weeks as I bump into friends (& friends of friends) who mention that they bought my book and started gifting bliss to loved ones. And for those of you who have listened, encouraged me and offered constructive feedback for getting the word out about bliss, I’m so grateful. Thank you for embracing my original gifting concept.

I wrote the Bliss guide to pass on my family tradition and I hope you will make it your own!  But I have a lofty goal. I always imagined that writing the guide to bliss was just the beginning of getting the ball rolling. My ultimate wish is that one day gifting bliss for pregnancy will be as common as a baby shower and that women who have never heard of me or my book will be gifting bliss. Bliss is not a book, it’s an idea… it’s a movement!

And it’s in this line of thinking that I’ve made some changes to this website. Gift Bliss is my attempt to help make STARTING and GIFTING bliss EASY FOR YOU. Not only is this site here to promote my book but it is a RESOURCE for those of you who like the idea of bliss but feel overwhelmed with implementing the concept. Through my blog and Pinterest boards (& possible upcoming products) I’ll do the heavy lifting for you.

Starting with a bunch of cotton bliss gifts! Cotton bliss gifts are given in month 5 | weeks 22-26 of pregnancy. The abundance of cotton baby items make it one of the easiest gifts to find. And the range of prices will work for any budget.

 

latchy catchy

As every mom knows even the best little sleeper seems to pop awake at the slightest click of their door. My first gift suggestion is small, hand-made and really reasonably priced at $9.95. The Latchy Catchy is a clever little mom-invented product that makes baby’s door nice and quiet to open and close.

 

 

 

 

Unless she’s going old-school and waiting to be surprised in the delivery room, your sister, friend or daughter will find out this month whether she’s expecting a boy or a girl. So now you can get a little more customized with your giving. But keep her own personal style in mind too, many women aren’t ready to embrace baby colors and patterns just yet.

 

nursing scarf

For the expectant mom who plans to nurse, I love this scarf that doubles as a nursing cover! Hold Me Close is made in the USA and at the $20 price point makes an easy and stylish cotton bliss gift for mom.

 

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If your friend is expecting her second or third child and already has much of the major gear, a car seat slip cover is an inspired gift idea. Big brother’s car seat can get a girlish makeover and mom will get raves as she totes baby around town in a chic fabric covered ride. Chubby Baby is an Etsy shop that offers these covers in a wide range of fabric from $40-65.

 

hospital gown

And for the ultimate pampering give your expectant daughter a thoughtful, custom-made hospital gown from Annie & Isabel. The nurse, sisters who founded the company discovered that the generic hospital gown was often a patient’s number one complaint. In one of these beautifully designed creations (that cover the backside) she will look good and in turn, feel good!

Here a bunch more lovely cotton items to gift bliss … and it’s not just inspiration, you can click and purchase any one of these products. I told you I was trying to make it easy for you! I can also assure you that non of my opinions are paid for. Friends are always asking me for gift ideas and these are simply the cool items that I’m happy to share with anyone who is looking for a creative idea.

 

cotton toy

diaper covers

maternity fashion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope you’re having fun giving bliss gifts and remember, if you need more ideas and inspiration, I’m here for you! Check out our Pinterest boards and pass it on, it’s a movement folks!


giving bliss | the lotion symbol

month 4 - lotionOk, you’ve started giving bliss. I hope your expectant friend was a little surprised and a lot excited by the concept. You gave her a thoughtful paper gift a month ago and now it’s time to come up with an idea for the lotion symbol.

Lotion is the second bliss symbol given in month 4 | weeks 18-21 of pregnancy. There are so many lotions and clever little potions that can make the transition into motherhood a little smoother. Giving a lotion gift is easy, I usually opt for one of two choices. Either lotion for mom’s belly or bath goodies for the babe-to-be.

Naturally, as an expectant mother’s belly (and let’s face it, entire body) expands, she may be getting nervous about stretch marks. There is no 100% guarantee that moisturizing can prevent these badge-of-honor lines from getting too out of control, but it can’t hurt to attempt preventive measures. There are two types of emollients that are considered the gold standard when it comes to preventing stretch marks, shea butter and cocoa butter. You can find a range of pricing and packaging for these products, so take your pick.

 

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products-pumpkin-body-butterFor a friend who loves all things pumpkin this time of year, consider a jar of Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Body Butter. For the girlfriend who appreciates handmade products Carriage44, a shop that specializes in handmade soaps and lotions, offers whipped shea butter in several different scents. Etsy.com is always a fun place to search for special gifts!

 

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Bathing a baby is an experience most parents quickly grow to enjoy and there is a huge array of bath washes, vapors, lotions and even water coloring tablets to make the experience truly blissful for all involved. Go for the classic (& budget friendly) Johnson & Johnson baby products or to go the extra mile, sign your expectant friend up for a subscription to The Honest Company’s eco-friendly baby products, how cool would that be to get as a new mom!

 

If you’re looking for a really creative lotion bliss gift, once again, I found it on Etsy.com! The Ouch Pouch is a beautifully designed, waterproof travel bag, perfect for organizing all of mom and baby’s essentials in the diaper bag. These handmade bags come in a huge selection of fabrics and it always makes me feel good to support small-business moms.

 

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So there you have it, whether you pick up some baby lotion next time you grocery shop or go online and search for something extra special, make sure you wrap it up and make it pretty. Bliss is a thoughtful tradition and you’re expectant friend will appreciate the extra effort you’re making to celebrate her little miracle.

 


book launch party

Thank you to friends, family and bliss fans who joined us for an evening of sharing and celebrating the publication of my little guide-book. I was so delighted to see family from far away walk through the door! Paper Delights was the perfect host and I think we all found something we needed from their beautiful selection of cards and gifts.

Alicia Olson’s bliss merchandise display delivered the perfect example of how bliss can partner with baby retail shops. Local shop owners were able to see more clearly how the new tradition of bliss symbols for pregnancy can actually promote the baby goods they already offer. A bliss display can elevate the baby section of any gift shop.

I wanted to toast several of the people who helped make my vision come to life. To Peter, my soul mate, for giving me three babies and for your support throughout my writing, designing and self-publishing ups & downs. To my mom, Debbie Kellogg, an inspiring writer and in this case my editor. Special thanks, to Alison Ashmead and Gretchen Cook, graphic design friends who offered critiques and advice and without whom this book would not be nearly as lovely. Thank you to Arlene Brown of Brown Foto Bug for the gorgeous photographs of the evening (seriously, call her for your next event). And to my dear group of girlfriends, you are a constant source of support and encouragement.

THANK YOU FOR A WONDERFUL EVENING!

 

 


early birds

19063823_xxlI wish I was a morning person. I’m not. I like to stay up late and I’m not in my right mind until I’ve had my morning coffee.

A few days ago, my two youngest both woke me, consecutively, in the night. How is it that siblings know when you’re just starting to fall back asleep from helping the other? I was pretty annoyed. I was particularly tired that night and they are both well past that night waking stage. It made me think about all the times I’ve woken with my babies through the years. Somehow, that isn’t annoying to me, it’s just part of the package deal of having an infant and I did it willingly. Don’t get me wrong, it’s exhausting but somehow I have grace for that season and I know it will pass. 

I was looking through a long list of notes I keep and I came upon something I scribbled down when my youngest child was about six months old. And I thought I’d share…

I woke one morning, early, maybe 4am to feed my baby girl. She is a great sleeper (knock on wood). I could hear birds chirping when I got back in bed. In fact, it was quite a ruckus, hard to fall back to sleep it was so loud. I thought to myself that those early birds were feeding their darling little babies just like I was. What an amazing bond to nature and fertility I feel when I have a baby. 

 


start giving bliss | the paper symbol

month 3 - paperCongratulations, your daughter is having her first baby! Or your best friend just told you she’s expecting her fourth, BOY! Let’s say your sister finally adopted and promptly found out she’s pregnant…Yep, it’s time to start giving bliss! Paper is the first bliss symbol, given in month three | weeks 13-17 of pregnancy, when most expectant parents feel comfortable sharing their happy news. Paper is a timeless and practical material to represent the first symbol in a series of seven gifts given throughout the pregnancy of a close loved one. It’s also probably the easiest bliss gift to find.

BOOKS | When it comes to paper bliss gifts my first thought always turns to books. There is no shortage of subjects that make great gifts for a mom-to-be. From pregnancy journals and infant care to favorite children’s stories, books always make thoughtful gifts. These are a few of my (& my kids’ favorites).

Studies have shown that babies respond to familiar sounds they hear while in the womb whether it be mom and dad’s voices or a book read aloud. Oh, Baby, the Places You’ll Go!: A book to be read in Utero
is kind of like a starter Dr. Suess book to read while baby is in utero. No No Yes Yes (Leslie Patricelli board books) has been a favorite with all my kids. The simple communication style and darling illustrations are entertaining and help kids understand their world.

 

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baby owner's manual

 

 

 

The Baby Owner’s Manual is a clever little book designed and written as a technical manual and makes learning to care for your offspring humorous and entertaining.

Dunstan Baby Language is the amazing discovery of a pattern of sounds that infants worldwide use during the first three months of life. Once parents familiarize themselves with these sounds they are able to understand their baby’s needs and respond with confidence. It worked wonders with my last two babes, I only wish I knew about it for my #1 son! Remember, when giving a book, add a little dedication on the inside cover.  “To baby Smith, this was your mom’s favorite book and I can’t wait to read it to you too! Love Grandma B.” These little gems make a simple book a true bliss gift.

 

GIFT CERTIFICATES | As a gift giver, I’ll admit that giving a gift-certificate is not very creative, however I have many friends who would prefer a day at the spa or a dinner out with their spouse to almost anything else I could buy them. This is especially true for the veteran mom who doesn’t often take the time to indulge herself. Keep the gift certificate specific so that she can’t spend it on the kiddos and has to treat herself! Maternity clothing, professional infant photos and restaurant gift cards would all be fun ways to express your friendship and excitement for her new bun-in-the-oven.

 

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MEMORY BOOK | One of my favorite items to give is materials to build childhood memories. My inner archivist wants to collect pictures, cards and cute kid’s quotes to save for posterity. There are so many different ways to do this and it’s a big job. Most of the moms I know feel overwhelmed when it comes to organizing photos or scrapbooks.

 

bithday interview blurb link

This brilliant little album keeps things simple. It’s a 20 Questions Birthday Interview. Conceived and designed by a mom. Basically, during birthday festivities each year take a few moments to ask your child about their favorites. What is your favorite breakfast food? Favorite color? What are you grateful for? What do you want to be when you grow up? Slap a photo on the opposite page and you have a fun annual tradition and archive of your quickly changing child. This book starts on the third birthday when children can start expressing clear opinions, but I stuck a few pages in the front with general growth statistics and fun facts about my babes in their first few years. New moms will love this album and be excited to know they have a really doable way to capture memories.

So that’s it… choose a paper gift be it a book, gift certificate or just a beautiful greeting card. While expressing your sentiments, include a short explanation of bliss, preparing her for six more surprises over the course of her pregnancy and …you’ve started giving bliss.

An expectant woman who is finishing up her first trimester, depending on her circumstances and how bad her morning sickness has been, may be having a hard time getting excited for baby. The first bliss gift is a wonderful way to show your support and excitement for her. Believe me, your expectant friend will be blown away by your thoughtful gesture.


the day after delivery

5619784_xxlI’ll admit it, I’m no better than my princess obsessed 2-year-old daughter. I was glued to the coverage of the royal baby this week. I could not get enough of all the articles, the TV coverage and Twitter has been highly entertaining.

I celebrated the birth of the royal baby and then watched William and Kate graciously make an appearance the next day. Kate looked great but she also didn’t attempt to hide her post baby tummy and rode away in the backseat, next to the baby, like most first time moms do. It made me think back to the first few days after the birth of my own little heir, 9 years ago.

If I had a royal beauty team, my hair might have had the potential to look camera-ready the day after delivery but nothing else about my body or emotions would have. Enter the indignities of giving birth.

I won’t go into the colorful details of my labor (although if you know me at all you know love to hear labor stories) but I remember the first night in the hospital I could not sleep for fear that the perfect little baby sleeping in the salad bin next to me would succumb to SIDS during his first few hours of life. But I was equally upset with the idea of the nurses watching him for me. What kind of mom am I if I actually want my child taken away just after meeting him? What if the nurses don’t watch him well enough?

I had a rough delivery and of course all these thoughts were just the irrational emotions of a woman who had just gone through 14 hours of labor, was exhausted and who’s own body was working hard to heal. But I didn’t realize all that at the time. Possibly because of my own recovery, my milk took 5 days to come in and our little guy had colic, which means a lot of inconsolable crying (by both of us). Suffice it to say my first experience of motherhood felt like trial by fire.

As new parents, I remember driving somewhere with my husband and we just looked at each other and said why doesn’t anyone tell you about this stuff? Well, I have a few guesses.

1 | Baby memories fade quickly. All the sleepless nights make a parent’s memory a little fuzzy, selective memory sets in and viola; all the hard parts are forgotten.

2 | My second thought is that some first nights with an infant are beautiful. And some babies are actually blissful infants who are easily comforted and make their parents feel like instant pros. I know first hand because I have a few friends who had these easy babies and my second son and I had an ideal first night in the hospital. He slept in my arms and would periodically wake to quietly stare into my eyes. We fell in love that first night.

3 | Another possibility why I didn’t hear more of the real details of post birth and infant life is that we mother’s have a little guilt about our first emotions as mothers and we don’t want to admit that we were overwhelmed and didn’t have a clue what we were doing at the start.

My wish for the Duchess of Cambridge, and every new mom, is that they have the blissful baby experience first. But for those who are surprised by the harsh reality of post-pregnancy let me assure you that it is not a reflection on you as a mother. You just got your challenging child first, everyone gets one eventually. These children will bring just as much joy and life to your home as the easy ones.

The best advice I got in the early days of motherhood was from my husband. He likened motherhood to a new job. He reminded me that it always takes several months to learn the ropes and adjust to a new routine. It’s the same with motherhood.

Whether you’re royal or just a commoner like the rest of us, it takes some time to feel confident and comfortable with the enormous new role of motherhood.


stop over-thinking

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I’m writing this blog to promote my recently released book, Bliss: A guide to unique gift-giving for the expectant mom.

During the process of writing, designing and publishing my first book I have determined that nothing worthwhile is done alone. So my first few posts here will include shout-outs to the many people who helped along the way. Thank you to the always inspiring KUOW radio and Ross Reynolds at The Conversation for interviewing Chris Guillebeau, his book was the jumping off point for my own.

When I first set out to write a book about the concept of bliss I’m pretty sure a few of my friends had their doubts that my very simple idea could possibly fill up a book.

Bliss is a basic concept; it takes about a paragraph to explain. In a sentence, bliss is a series of gifts given during pregnancy. So why write a book?

Well, I figure that a guide is the first step to sharing my idea with the world. I’d love to see bliss spread far and wide and become a tradition as popular as a baby shower. I also wanted to stop sitting on my hands and do something with this original idea I came up with over a decade ago.

The bliss story started eleven years (and 9 months) ago when the first pregnancy was announced in our large and generous family. We were all excited about celebrating this new life. In anticipation of many more babies to come, I knew I wanted to find a special way to mark the occasion each time. And just like that bliss was conceived.

Every time I shared my idea with a new person they would tell me I should do something with it. So one spring day while listening to an NPR program about people who had found success I decided I’d try the formula that the interviewed author was suggesting. These were the three steps:

 

+ USE EXPERTISE YOU ALREADY HAVE (meaning no research)

+ DO IT IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME (30-90 days, which translated means stop over-thinking it, which I am very guilty of, and just move forward)

+ DO IT ON THE CHEAP (not much more than $100)

 

So I started writing the guide to bliss. At first I wasn’t even sure how to write it but the words just came flowing out. Turns out I know a lot about being pregnant, having been through the magical, emotional and sometimes undignified experience three times now (but that’s a whole other post).

I also seem to have a knack for finding great gifts. I often get a message from a friend who is stumped for a gift idea, and somehow that’s part of the information my brain stores away. Some of my friends still have all their multiplication tables from elementary school cemented up there or the ability to transform random items in their panty into a delicious meals. Well, I have gift ideas, creative solutions, and thoughtful little ideas pouring out of my brain.

I love giving gifts, thoughtful, appropriate, wow-factor gifts. I’m the kind of gift giver that searches for the perfect gift. I make a mental note of your passing comment about a specific want or need and then present it to you six months later when I draw your name in the holiday gift exchange. It gives me a natural high when someone tells me they use my gift all the time, or the ultimate success, that they have given the same gift to other friends. I’m odd this way.

I gave myself the goal of having the book done by the end of the summer but let’s be reasonable I have three kids and I wasn’t putting life on hold so my 90 days stretched into a year. But I never lost momentum, I kept moving forward. And the cost? So far the design for this blog and the cost for the photos in the book is all I’m out, so I did pretty well on that account.

I believe a baby is ALWAYS a reason to celebrate. There’s a whole lot more to the bliss story but that’s what a blog is for, right? I hope you’ll stay tuned.