Category: "parenting tips"

Returning to Work While Breastfeeding: A Checklist for Moms

August 28th, 2017 | no comments

Every nursing momma who’s heading back to work experiences a little uneasiness about how things will go once she’s back in the office. Questions swirl like, “Will my baby eat?”, “Will I produce enough milk?”, or “How awkward is it going to be around my co-workers?” Thankfully, this back-to-work checklist from Mom Loves Best will help ease your mind about what to expect, and make sure you’re properly prepared well before your maternity leave ends.

When your baby is brand-new:

You shouldn’t even be thinking about heading back to work yet. Your main concerns should be snuggling your babe and establishing your milk supply. But during this period do make sure you’ve got a good-quality pump, and once your baby is three weeks allow friends or family members to start giving your baby the occasional bottle. This will help your little one get accustomed to switching between bottle and breast, but also send the message that mom is only available for breastfeeding.

Read: Preparing Baby for Your Return to Work

About a month before heading back to work:

It’s time to start building a freezer stash of milk. At a minimum, make sure you have one day’s supply (about 25-30 ounces) in your freezer. You should also begin to talk with your boss about your return-to-work plan along with your pumping needs. You should be provided with a clean, private space that has an electrical outlet to plug in your pump.

The week before your maternity leave ends:

It’s time to do a trial run. Start pumping every three hours to get your body ready and to start building a regular pumping habit. Arrange a “practice day” at daycare, or invite your nanny or babysitter over to the house for a few hours. This will allow you to see if there are any unexpected challenges with your arrangements that need correction.

Read: Pumping at Work: Could We Make it Any Harder?

Your final piece of preparation will be to gear up emotionally for your first week back at work. Expect that you’ll be tired and cranky. Expect that your baby will be, too. Expect that you will feel mom guilt. And also, expect that it will get better.

The first week back:

The first week back is always the hardest, so if you’re emotionally prepared it won’t catch you off guard. You’re likely to feel a lot of stress during this time, so don’t panic if your milk supply takes a bit of a dip.

Once you’re back at work find ways to connect with your baby through evening play, frequent nursing, and lots of snuggle time. And be sure to keep your off-hours schedule clear – this adjustment week is not a time to make lots of social commitments but is instead a time to give yourself lots of grace and rest. Order take-out for dinner and leave the laundry for another day.

Before you know it, your “new normal” will actually feel normal. You, your baby, and your family will adjust. You’ll fall into a groove, and it will feel comfortable. Don’t let planning for your return to work overtake your precious maternity leave, but do be mindful of small preparations that will make your transition more smooth. One step at a time, momma. You can do this!


About the Author

Jenny Silverstone is the mother of two, a mommy blogger and an avid breastfeeding advocate. You can find her sharing her journey through motherhood her blog and on Facebook.

How to prepare your kids for summer camp

May 16th, 2017 | no comments

As parents you have the final say on where your child goes to summer camp. In the end you know best, and you should never send your child to a camp that you don’t feel 100% comfortable with.

Having said that, it’s vital to talk to your child and let them be a part of the process. They’re the ones that are doing the camping after all, and without their input you may be setting them up for a less-than-optimal experience. Here are some tips on what to discuss with your child when picking a summer camp that’s perfect for them.

What kind of stay are they comfortable with?

Summer camps fall into two categories in terms of stay – day camps and sleepover or overnight camps. With day camps, your child will participate in activities every day but you’ll pick them up before nightfall. With sleepover camps, your child will be at the camp site 24/7 for however long they stay.

Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and some children do better at day camps and some do better at overnight camps. Sleepover camps allow for kids to experience an immersive experience and helps them to foster their sense of independence. Day camps allow kids not quite ready for overnight camping the opportunity to experience a good amount of what summer camp can be. You should always encourage your child to take risks and confront trepidation, but you should never force them. Make sure your child says they are ready for a sleepover experience before shipping them off.

Also remember to discuss length of stay. If it’s your child’s first overnight camping experience, you may want to opt for a few days or a week – even if the full camping package last for two weeks or more.

What are they interested in?

Apart from type of camp stay, the most important question concerning summer camp is whether your child wants to go to a specialty camp or a general camp. The former focuses on one or two specific activities – think dance, music, horseback riding, sports, archery, etc. The latter tends to have kids participate in a wide range of activities.

If your child is obsessed with dance, for instance, they may do better at a camp that focuses on what they love. Anything else may be a distraction.

If your child doesn’t yet have a specified interest, sending them to a specialty camp in the hopes of developing an interest may backfire. General camps allow kids to experience many things, and can help them figure out what they love for themselves.

Don’t shy away from the “homesick problem”

You might think that as soon as you mention the word homesick, you’re setting your child up for failure. But according to Christopher Thurber, PhD, co-author of Summer Camp Handbook, and a spokesperson for the American Psychological Association, that’s simply not true.

“There’s a conventional idea that if you mention homesickness, you’ll just make them focus on it. But it doesn’t work that way. Have an open discussion with your kids about how they feel about going away. What’s most important here is that the parent gives the message that he or she believes the child can handle the stress of being away, that the child is competent at handling temporary, uncomfortable feelings,” he tells WebMD.

The more your child feels like they have a say in the decision making, the less likely they are to be overcome with feelings of homesickness when away.

Camp can be a great way for your kid to make new friends and learn new things while they’re off from school. However, if they have been struggling in a particular area of study, looking into summer tutoring services as an alternative is not a bad idea either.


Thank you to our guest post from Alex of !!

Creating a theme for 2017

January 7th, 2017 | no comments

As we enter a new year there is pressure for resolutions, changes, improvements or somehow stating to the world that you are dissatisfied with your current state. I’ve never been disciplined enough to keep a resolution top of mind for 365 days straight…who does, really?!

So, instead, this year I’m gonna roll with a theme because it’s more of an intention. And intentions are not so restrictive, limiting or have so much pressure attached. I’ve got enough pressure in my life, thank you very much!

This year for me it’s, FLOW. Ahhhhhh, I even relax just saying it. I don’t mean roll over and take all the crap that rolls your way this year. No. It’s not about inaction. This is coming from a place of intentional action. I interpret FLOW as a willingness to not judge the present and just go with it, pivot, embrace, fight, dance with it, ect. Because, after all…

“What you resist, persists.”

I wrote on my Instagram feed:

My theme for 2017!


As in EASE.


Be in the moment.

Delight in synchronicity.

Go with the flow.

Yes please! All of it and a side of 🍟!

Being in the flow probably feels a bit foreign for a “go-getter”, for a professional woman climbing the corporate ladder or a mom who’s just trying to figure out why her baby is crying so much!

This state of being is not an American value. Could it be perceived as lazy, bad mom, not career-oriented? So don’t feel bad if FLOW feels weird. We were not raised like this, this behavior is not rewarded in sports, taught in school or promoted at work.

But I argue that it’s the strongest place that a working mother can operate from!

  • Flow cuts out worry, anxiety, not-enoughness, or keeping-up-with-the-Jones syndrome.
  • Flow frees you to accept and then in turn, like the situation you are in.
  • Flow expands possibilities
  • Flow says “I’m okay”, “I’m a good mom right now”, and “I’m enough.”
  • Flow strengthens resilience
  • Flow doesn’t judge
  • Flow helps conserve your energy
  • Flow frees you up to experience life

How do you stay in the flow?

  1. Keep faith that everything will all work out. Trust that life is working FOR YOU not against you.
  2. Have awareness of yourself in each moment
  3. Don’t judge yourself or your circumstances
  4. Allow and don’t label it as good or bad
  5. Ground and center yourself so you have a clear head
  6. Protect your energy and keep going!

I’ll keep my #flow2017 vibe alive on Instagram and I hope inspire you to to keep your intentions going all year long too.

Leave a comment below about how the word FLOW feels for you?

Mother’s Day Gifts Working Moms Really Deserve

May 8th, 2016 | 2 comments

Happy Mother’s day! You deserve a day of pampering, filled love, appreciation and joy! In honor of you I’ve gathered some of my favorite women to share some of their gifts that you really deserve. While most of them fit into a gift-wrapped box they are gifts you can give yourself every day of the year.

I hope you are inspired by these these self-care tips, practical advice and divine goddess wisdom. Happy Mother’s Day to you mama! Enjoy your day and take a little time to nourish your soul,Cheers!

mothers day gifts we deserve ThriveMomma


Gift of Support

Busy career women need a strong partner. Not just to open that jar of spaghetti sauce but a true ally in the day-to-day raising of children, managing the home and in support of their careers.  Emily of Women, Work and Life mentions ways how men can support women in their career and it’s a beautiful thing!

Men Take Note: What women really want for mothers day


Gift of time

So not all gifts come in a Tiffany box, but giving yourself the gift of time and freedom from stress is almost more valuable. Monica at Redefining Mom never holds back and her five tips on how to manage your busy mom life are the best. So go ahead and give yourself the gift of sanity.

5 Practical Time Management Tips for Working Moms


Gift of Recognition

And don’t forget the other working moms at your work. They deserve a little props for all the work they do too. Lori of Mindful Return gives some great suggestions on how you can recognize and appreciate other working moms you work with!

Celebrate your mother colleagues this Mother’s Day


Gift of Love

When we give love we get so much more in return. Courtney’s moving love-note to her cutie daughter Madeline is a great reminder of why we endure this motherhood thing, after all. It’ll make you wanna hug your little cutie a little bit more.

Celebrating my daughter on Mother’s Day


Gift of Peace

Life is stressful. Sometimes stress is thrown at you like when your child has a 102 degree fever or when your business goes through a reorganization and you don’t know what’s gonna happen to your job. Whatever life challenges us with, the key to finding PEACE among the chaos is about how we DEAL in the moment that counts. My Mother’s Day Momtra (mantra for moms) is a simple tool to help you relax IN THE MOMENT!

Mothers Day Momtra


Enjoy your special day today Mama! You deserve it!

What gifts are you looking forward to getting today? Leave comment below!


Moms Making Memories online summit

March 26th, 2016 | no comments

I’m honored to be one of the 21 amazing women who will be interviewed for the Moms Making Memories free online summit!


Elizabeth gathered premier  experts on health, wellness, mom-life, parenting experts and more so that you can have some sanity in your busy life!

I’ll be talking about how:

1.  How I birthed ThriveMomma for one of the most traumatic times in my life…going back to work after maternity leave
2.  How can busy moms incorporate mindfulness and balance into their busy schedules
3.  What the heck time management and what little things can you do today to get organzied
4.  Some of my favorite work/life balance tactics
5.  Return to the workplace after maternity leave tips and tricks
Each interview is an easy 20 min and they are delivered to your inbox daily.
After the interview you can download my Time Management for Busy Moms Essentials guide + a BONUS!

Sign up for the summit

and I know you will enjoy them all!


What is positive parenting

November 30th, 2015 | 2 comments
I am many things in this world (wife, mother, Working Mom Support Coach, employee, short order cook, solver of all toddler related problems) but I am NOT a parenting coach! I pride myself that I am a ninja at helping moms go back to work after maternity leave, manage their time to successfully run a household and have a fulfilling work life.  But I defer to the experts when it comes to child behavior and what the HECK to do with it! So I’m so thrilled to introduce you to an expert on Positive Parenting, Debbie Zeichner, lCSW! I know her personally and have benefited so much from her compassionate approach that WORKS! Enjoy this guest post from Debbie!
Positive Parenting ThriveMomma Debbie Zeichner

How did you become a parent coach  and educator and why is it your passion?

I knew from a very young age that helping others would be my calling – I was always told that I had a “gift” for listening in a way that allowed others to feel heard, understood and supported.  After finishing high school, I went on to receive a bachelor’s degree with a major in Psychology and a minor in Family Studies.  From there, I went on to pursue graduate studies in Social Work and received my Master’s Degree.  The favorite part of my training was working with parents and families.  I recall doing an internship at Rady’s Children’s Hospital’s Outpatient Department and realizing, early on, that the most effective way to positively change a child’s future was by helping and supporting the parents.  My dream was to have my own private psychotherapy practice, which I built and maintained for many years.  

After having our first child, I felt completely overwhelmed. Although I had led tons of parenting groups and classes, having my own child threw me for a very big loop! I felt anxious and had way more questions than answers. Fortunately, my husband and I were introduced to two amazing parenting courses, Redirecting Children’s Behavior and Positive Discipline, which completely changed our lives!  These classes had a more contemporary view of parenting, backed by neuroscience and they really resonated with me.  I was so enthused and passionate about what I was learning and we saw such a positive shift in our kids as well as in our own confidence, that I became certified to teach both of these courses.  Now, I have the absolute pleasure of both teaching and working to support parents individually in my coaching practice.


What is your philosophy on parenting?

My philosophy of parenting is based on Positive Discipline, which is a positive parenting model rooted in Adlerian Psychology.  This model highlights the notion that all behavior is a communication and that a misbehaving child is a discouraged child.  Recent research tells us that we all have hardwired needs for belonging (connection) and significance (that we matter/are of value) as well as the need for attention and a sense of power/control over our world.  When one or more of these core, emotional needs are not being met, we are likely to see misbehavior in the form of tantrums, defiance, back talk, aggression etc.  It’s so natural for parents to focus solely on the behavior itself (we just want it to stop!), yet, when we focus only on the behavior and not on what’s causing the behavior in the first place, we miss out on the opportunity to effectively guide our children in learning valuable social and emotional life skills.

Positive Discipline is a non-punitive method, emphasizing mutual respect, which honors the notion that children don’t need to suffer (be punished) in order to learn.  Limits are set with both kindness and firmness at the same time. At the core of the approach is the importance of building and maintaining the connection between parents and their children – children who feel connected to their parents, have much less need to misbehave!  I feel so fortunate to be able to offer these practical, effective and wonderful tools to parents and their families!

What are some of the biggest challenges you hear from parents and what do you recommend?

Parents face all sorts of challenges these days…everything from tantrums to back talk to homework battles and everything in between!  So often, kids act out or misbehave because they are either feeling disconnected, have mistaken beliefs about how to get their needs met and/or have some big emotions they are not able to understand and process on their own. Parents have a wonderful opportunity to teach their kids valuable skills every time a challenge appears. Understanding how the brain functions and why their kids act as they do can be very helpful in approaching behavior.

The most important tool for parents to know about is that of “connection before correction.”  When emotions are running high (either ours or our child’s), we can not think logically, rationally or clearly.  When our kids are having a hard time, it’s important to know that yelling, nagging and lecturing won’t solve the problem. It feels like the answer in the moment, but in reality, our kids only tune us out when we lash out.  In order to effectively handle those most challenging parenting moments, it’s important that parents first focus on centering themselves.  Our kids learn how to regulate their emotions by how we regulate ours, so we want to model what rational behavior looks like, first and foremost. This involves self-care – taking deep breaths, walking away and responding, rather than reacting. Parents need to model the very behavior they want to see in their kids.  Kids listen after they feel listened to.

4.) What are your favorite resources for parents?

Debbie Zeichner LCSW
My favorite books/resources are listed on my website and I regularly recommend that parents read anything by Dr. Laura Markham (, Tina Bryson and Dan Siegel as well as the Positive Discipline series by Dr. Jane Nelsen.
Check out my site  for my schedule of my San Diego workshops. “Parenting without Power Struggles” will take place in Encinitas on December 15th, 7-9pm.  Please check website for details and registration.
Debbie Zeichner

Natural DIY Baby Products

October 10th, 2015 | no comments

Happy to bring you a guest post from Edna Thomson who breaks down how to make some of the most commonly used baby products. I remember when my girls were  babies and their skin was ultra sensitive and I worried about the harsh chemicals in our household. If you have the time and desire to make these natural

DIY baby products ThriveMomma

Some people decide to use products that they make themselves. They clean their homes with DIY detergents, use their own products for personal care. What about when it comes to your baby? Would you prefer to use cosmetics that are commercials or you would rather do it the natural way?

Most of the commercial products for babies are not the best choice. They contain chemicals that can actually affect badly to the skin and the organism of the new born. Baby’s skin is really soft and it absorbs anything you put on it. Therefore it is really important to use natural products. Of course, there are companies that produce only natural baby cosmetics, but they are actually really expensive and not everyone can afford it. Here are some natural and more inexpensive solutions when it comes to the hygiene of your baby.

Cloth diaper is more natural and cheaper. Babies rarely get rash. But you should not use commercial diaper cream, because it will leave the smell. But here is a natural home-made diaper cream that will not cause such troubles and helps dealing with rash.

Natural home-made diaper cream

Use half a cup of coconut oil, 1 spoon calendula and one of chamomile, a quarter cup of shea butter and one tsp arrowroot (or you can use zinc oxide powder). Put a couple of cm of water in a sauce in medium high, then melt the coconut oil and add it into the water. Put the two flowers in the water. Let it boil for sixty minutes on low heat. After the hour carefully remove all the flowers with a strainer. Then with a fork or a immersion mix the shea with the arrowroot and the coconut oil. After you are done put the cream in little jars.

Most of baby oils are based on petroleum.Can you believe it?!. Of course, there is a better way:

DIY Baby Oil

A cup of organic oil of olive, 2 spoons of calendula and 2 of chamomile is all you need. The calendula and chamomile are put into a jar, then the oil. You need to put a lid on. Storage it in a dark, cool shelf and shake it every day for seven weeks. When you happen to see the orange oil, it means that it is ready. This oil is rich in vitamins and calms the baby’s skin.

Most of the powders for babies contain talc, which is not healthy for your infant. A natural way will be the perfect way.

DIY Baby Powder

You need arrowroot powder – a half of cup and 1 tsp of chamomile. You need to powder then in a blender. Mix the two ingredients and put them in a jar. You can use it regularly and will not harm your baby.

DIY Baby Lotion

Baby Lotions may be made at home, too. You need a half of cup of oil of olive or Almond ¼ cup of oil of coconut and the same amount of beeswas. You can put oil of vitamin E – one spoon and coco butter or shea butter, vanilla extract or whatever you like. Use a big jar to put the ingredients in it  and a couple of centimetres of water. Put a lid on it and stir it until the ingredients melt. Then put it into other jars. You can use it regularly like any other lotion. It moisturise the baby’s skin. Six months is the life of the home-made baby lotion.

DIY Baby Wash

Babies do not need shampoos and soaps. They have natural oils that protects baby’s skin and it is better not to wash it off. You can use microfibre cloths to clean the baby or castille soap both for shampoo and soap. This soap is made of olive and soda, so it will not cause any harm.

Home made products are one really good alternative if you want to keep it natural. It is cheap, it is healthier and does not harm your baby’s organism and skin. Better be safe than sorry.

This article was provided by ProCarpetCleaners Ltd. who have a passion for organic alternatives and DIY for healthier homes and families.



BabyTalk Co partnership!

August 24th, 2015 | no comments

ThriveMomma BabyTalkCo partnership

I’m so thrilled to announce an exclusive partnership with BabyTalk Co to host my upcoming NEW online class! It’s THE place I wish I had when I was pregnant. So much to learn, too many websites to cruise. Why not have it all in one place?! Maggie, the founder, is a sweetheart and I can’t not think of a better place for ThriveMomma’s to get their on-demand class than

So, this class is still in the works so hang tight. If you have any questions please email elaine @ thrivemomma . com. Cheers!


BabyTalk Co ThriveMomma partnership


Who is BabyTalk Co?

It’s a baby planning + new parent education site with chic, savvy, and accessible ways to make planning for baby, and navigating being a new parent more functional and fabulous than ever. Babytalk provides foundational maternity + newborn knowledge (and Return to Work!) that the modern family is looking for. It’s through Babytalk’s innovative approach, expertise, accessibility and savvy perspective that make babytalk the first of it’s kind.

Trusting your intuition

July 14th, 2015 | no comments

Mom intuition is our secret mom super-power. It’s our truth, our guiding light, compass, right answer, wisdom, and our divine gift. But it doesn’t come easy for most of us.

We take in so much through Facebook, we hear every one else’s opinion, we can google anything and we are so constantly “plugged in” that it’s no wonder we can’t hear that subtle, quiet voice inside. It’s an intentional choice each day and some mornings…a choice each hour…to listen to it.

1⃣ make a choice to flex that muscle called trusting yourself.

2⃣ find small moments to quiet yourself, get grounded and clear your head.

3⃣ over time hearing the answer and then following it will start to become second nature.

Mom intuition ThriveMomma

Truth about your postpartum body

June 10th, 2015 | 14 comments

This week’s guest blog is from Ari who turned her really tough postpartum experience into a beautiful (and much needed) service and product for the early days of motherhood. Her journey that she will share is real, raw and hits home for me on so many levels. Enjoy!

Truth about your postpartum body

What you won’t hear about your postpartum body…and What You Can Do About It.

Three days after my first son was born, I lay in bed with my legs spread apart as my mother hunched over to look for hemorrhoids “down there.” Staring at the ceiling fan, all I could think was, “In what parenting book did I see this picture?!”

The realities of motherhood are beautiful, stressful, messy, blissful and crazy all rolled into one. While you might have seen pictures of my handsome squishy baby on Facebook, you certainly weren’t seeing pictures of the havoc having him left on my body. I literally searched for these hashtags: #MamasFirstYear #Roids #LeakingFluidsAllOver #DryLipsAndNips

You can find plenty of books (and social media posts) about pregnancy, labor, delivery and newborn care. But when it comes to postpartum and what happens to your body after your bundle of joy is here, there just isn’t much out there.

This is what they don’t tell you about the first few weeks of postpartum:

Leaking and drying up happen at the same time.

How are these things possible in the same body, at the same time? Your breasts will most likely leak as your milk supply regulates to meet the needs of baby.  It’s also common to bleed for multiple weeks with a vaginal birth. At the same time, your lips might be cracked due to the unquenchable thirst nursing creates. Plus, your nipples feel like they have been rubbed raw by sandpaper as they adjust to your newborn’s suckling. It is hard to believe but, yes, your body will leak and dry up at the same time.

The (important) details are often left out.

People will gladly tell you general things to expect, but the nuts and bolts are left out. When I was pregnant, I was often given the advice “sleep when baby sleeps,” but no one told me how impossible that might be or what five hours of interrupted sleep would do to me physically, emotionally and mentally. Spoiler alert: you’ll probably feel like you are in a deep haze, similar to a really awful hangover, without the fun stories of the night before to go with it.

You’ll probably have to ask for help for YOU.

At a baby shower, how often do you see gifts specifically for mom? Most people are hard-wired to get presents for baby, which is certainly appreciated, but what about mom? You’ll need materials of your own to kickstart your postpartum healing. You may also need support in the form of meals, house cleaning, and baby holding. When they say, “it takes a village,” they aren’t just talking about what’s good for the child. It’s also what’s good for the mom.

You’ll eventually tell your own story.

Postpartum doesn’t last forever. But it does last longer than most women care to admit. Depending on your type of birth your soreness, bleeding and hormonal rawness could last for weeks but eventually go away. I can’t say that motherhood gets easier after the first few months, but it does evolve, and you’ll adapt too. And if you decide to do it again, you aren’t crazy. You are in love, and that love makes it worth enduring some temporary discomfort for a lifetime of love.

After my first son’s birth I remember thinking, “WHY DIDN’T ANYONE TELL ME THIS WOULD HAPPEN TO MY BODY?!?!” I was running out the store for granny panties and an ice pack for my bum. I realized there needed to be a better way for moms to have the right stuff especially at such a tenuous time right after they leave the hospital. So I created Mama Must-Haves with a friend and fellow mom. These care packages are created by moms, for moms.

In a Mama Must-Haves, you’ll find vaginal pads, handmade nursing pads, lanolin nipple cream, Mother’s Milk tea, Summer’s Eve wipes, hemorrhoid wipes, EOS lip balm, and, of course, some little pieces of chocolate. All the items are beautifully wrapped and packaged in a reusable plastic tote, with a supportive note of for the new mama.

Mama Must Have kit

They’re a triple-shot of “it’s going to be OK,” “here’s what works,” and “have a little chocolate.”

If you are interested in Mama Must-Haves for yourself or a mom-to-be, find us on Facebook at Each care package is $18 plus shipping and handling, and we ship anywhere within two days of purchase.

Ari Diaz

Ari Diaz is the founder of Mom Concierge, LLC, a business designed to support women during their postpartum recovery by offering personal assistant services, postnatal in-home massage including childcare, and individualized lists of referrals for the new mom.

Once calling Ohio, Montana, Oregon and Nevada home, she has settled in Phoenix and lovingly lives with her husband, Vic, and two boys, Benny (3 years) and Sam (7 months). She’s a firm believer in, “While mama takes care of baby, someone takes care of mama.”