Virtual baby shower, masked up birth and quarantine baby are all a part of our dear friend, Courtney Fos's, first year of motherhood. Courtney has been a friend of Annie Claire and Chelsey for what feels like forever.....really since college, and an avid supporter of SoSis from our store's first day open. But like really - we LOVE when Court walks through our doors on the reg and are always happy to deliver her purchases to her home around the corner from Chelsey. She's just one of the very bests.
Each year, we anticipate our "Moms that Make it Happen" blog series with much excitement and this year was no exception. Celebrating Courtney during her first year of "momming so hard" is something we were more than thrilled to do.
In part 2 of a 4 part series, meet Courtney Fos. In this post, Courtney shares why she be came a morning person (ish), the importance of grandparents, timing and waitlists, and what it means to let go of control. Read every line of this one, y'all. It's just that good.
I work as a Membership Manager for an oil and gas trade association in downtown Baton Rouge. The association represents all sectors of the oil and gas industry operating in Louisiana and the Gulf of Mexico. In a nutshell, anything dealing with our membership of approximately 100 member companies and 1,000 individual members, I am involved in it.
As of today, Hayes is a few days shy of 7 months old. I feel like we’re still in the “new” phase though. He’s a super sweet momma-loving little boy! In the last 2 months, we’ve gotten to really hear some belly laughs and see some of his personality. He loves "Itsy Bitsy Spider," "You Are My Sunshine," and "Peek-A-Boo" – not the actual game, but just hearing the words "Peak-A-Boo." It sends him into hysterics.
He’s a very curious little dude. I think he gets that from his Dad (Grif) proving the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree! Just recently, we started introducing solid foods – starting with sweet potatoes. Up until this point he's only had milk, so obviously he was in Heaven. As for me - I think as he grows, we'll find it hard to keep enough food in the house.
We are at a place right now where, although we are literally learning something new every day either about Hayes or ourselves (first time parents over here!), Grif and I really do make a good team. With that said, it does take a village. We are so blessed to have both sets of grandparents stepping up in a major way.
Hayes was born in October 2020 right in the middle of COVID. I knew I was going back to work in January 2021. We were coming up on 8ish months of being on daycare waitlists (4 daycares to be exact, and we’re still currently waiting), so we had to come up with a plan and FAST for what would happen with Hayes during weekdays starting in the new year.
Around Thanksgiving, my mom offered to watch him starting in January when I went back to work. She said, “Well, I can watch him for 3 months. Maybe until April.” I remember thinking, “Court, get the specifics and confirm with her that this is real!” It was in fact a real offer, and here we are, rolling in to May, and she’s still going strong for our little fam. She stays with us during the week and travels back home to LaPlace for the weekends. I tell her all the time that I’m not sure who’s going to be more upset when she’s no longer staying with us, me or Hayes (it’ll definitely be me!). Did I mention she's a great cook, and spoils us with homecooked meals during the week? She's a saint! We truly have the sweetest deal!
To give her a break, my in-laws have started to come to stay for a week at a time as well.
Two years ago, none of this would have been an option. At that time, at least one grandparent from each set was still working full time. We’re grateful.
It’s so nice to have both sets of grandparents so much in Hayes’ life. I know they, as well as Hayes, really enjoy their time together. They go for walks and swing on the front porch every day. He’s currently teething, so we are doing our best to keep him comfortable and saying our prayers that we make it out of the other side soon.
We’re enjoying having him all to ourselves, but are also ready to introduce him to friends and family we haven’t gotten to see this past year due to quarantining and COVID. Really looking forward to all of the adventures in our future!
I’ll start by saying I am not a morning person…at all. And I don’t drink coffee, so no help there. I say all that to help you understand why this “hack” is big on my list. I heard an influencer who’s a mom of three say, “Wake FOR them, not TO them” meaning start prepping before your child/children actually wake up because if they wake up before you, you’re already behind. If they eat cereal for breakfast, grab their bowls and box of cereal to have ready on the table, start packing their lunches if that’s your thing, have clothes laid out and ready to go, etc.
Hayes is still young and sleeps until about 7 a.m., however, prepping has become part of our routine to help get things rolling in the morning. I try to make it super easy for my mom, so the night before, I usually lay out on his changing table whatever I’d like him to wear for the day (it’s just a suggestion), we prepare his bottles for the next day (currently doing a mix of breastfeeding and pumping), and reload his diaper bag with diapers, an extra set of clothes, a toy or two, and wipes just in case they decide to take a day trip.
I do not leave much wiggle room for myself in the morning (snooze much?), so the bottom line is, anything I can do the night before to get a few extra minutes of sleep in the morning is worth it for me.
Well, there’s been so many. I actually keep a little book of memories that I will share with Hayes once he’s older. Each day, I write down something special from that day – experience of first time meeting a cousin, how he celebrated his first Mardi Gras by going see the house floats in New Orleans – those types of things, could be big or small. I want to remember it all!
I’m patiently waiting for the day he says “momma” which I just know will come first before he says “dada” because I’m the one who carried him for 9 months right (fingers crossed)?
Until then, my favorite mama memory would have to be the 6 month half birthday celebration we had. That’s a thing right, celebrating half birthdays? Grif, Hayes, and I grabbed brunch and went to take some photos with some birthday balloons and a half cake that I made. It was all very simple, but sweet. It’s a tradition I plan to keep up for years to come.
Allow yourself to accept help. Everyone needs a break sometimes. For me, I have always been one who likes to control everything. Since becoming a mom, I’m actively working on letting things go and not having a detailed plan for every part of the day.
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Ultimately, you as the momma know what’s good for your babe, so feel confident in yourself that you’re doing the best YOU can do!
Pre-baby - well I guess pre-Covid - I enjoyed dressing up! Cute dresses with a heal or cute sandal would be my jam.
Now that we’ve been home, quarantine, etc., I have added some new staples to my wardrobe. First of all, lounge sets should always be a thing from here on out. Also, I’m in to sneakers now thrown on with a basic tee. I have several shoes and shirt options from SoSis in my collection. And I love a good pair of white skinny jeans – I’m holding on to my skinnies for as long as possible; Gen Z can hate on me!
I am aware of trends, but I would not say I necessarily keep up with them. I love color and bright pieces and am trying to get more into prints especially with the summer months coming up.
Accessories…always YES to accessories. I was taught to make sure I’m wearing earrings whenever I leave the house, and believe me, that’s stuck with me into my adult life. You can always find me sporting a pair of Annie Claire Designs earrings and necklace whether I’m dressed for a wedding or a walk around the block. Just a fun little touch!
We love to love you. You are the girl we wish we could keep in our back pocket when we are having a hard day. You brighten up every room you walk in and we thank you for sharing your precious family with us and for supporting our small business from the verrrrrryyyyyy beginning.
Call your Mama - we're going out with you soon!
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