Lydia is wearing the Sumin Dress in Cream
Tell us a little bit about yourself:
I'm Lydia Amorim Jenkins, 26 years old and am currently expecting our second baby boy. I was born and raised, for the most part, in São Paulo, Brasil. My family is still there with the exception of my oldest sister (and best friend) who lives in Arkansas. My husband and I met in college and quickly got married 7 months later. When you know, you know, right? I postponed my plans for law school so we could start having children, which I do not regret at all. Now we are living in Dallas, Texas, because of Matt's career, and are excited to be moving out to Boston next summer for his new job. I am a stay at home mom, full time foodie, travel addict and gym rat.
Any advice on important convos to have with your partner before having a baby?
I think this is such an important question. I've seen so many couples struggling in their relationship because at some point, they didn't set up the stage properly for parenting. I am no expert, but I do know introducing a child in your relationship is beautiful YET extremely challenging. Before having a baby, both parties need to be equally on board. Having conversations like "when do we want to have a baby?', "how will we share responsibilities?", "how do we want to raise this child?", "are we ok with daycare?", "how many children do we want?", "what about parental leave?", "would we both be happy with a positive pregnancy test right now?", "what if infertility comes up- are adoption or surrogacy options?", "what have we learned from our parents' mistakes?", "who are some role model parents we want to follow?", and so many other conversations. The more you talk about these things, the fewer surprises and disappointments you will face later on. The baby will almost take over your entire life, however the best advice I've ever received is that YOUR PARTNER STILL COMES FIRST. So protect your relationship and make sure you talk and talk and talk to make sure you're both on the same page with having a baby. You are equals in the relationship and this will be the most important decision you'll make together.
Favorite go-to snack while pregnant?
As a foodie and a gym rat, my eating during pregnancy is a little funny. I definitely have cravings every so often, like today when I walked by a jar of pickles in the grocery store and immediately put it in my cart. Or a couple of weeks ago when I really really really wanted cinnamon rolls out of the blue and went out of my way to get ingredients and make them homemade - which takes forever. But mostly, I actually enjoy eating healthy meals during pregnancy. I don't have a go-to snack, it changes every day or week. I love variety, and that need for variety comes in stronger during pregnancy. Grapes, strawberries, chopped bell peppers with hummus have been some of my faves as of late. I plan for mostly nutritious meals throughout the week to fuel my body and baby. And then I will certainly indulge as well. I am literally baking crusty bread and eating a cinnamon roll as I type. Yes, cinnamon rolls again.
What is something motherhood has taught you?
Without a doubt, being a mother has taught me to love. Truly love. I wholeheartedly believe love is a verb, and as a mother, I am constantly feeding, bathing, playing, holding, hugging, kissing, praising, following, protecting, clothing, brushing, defending, cooking, nursing, ALL THE VERBS. I am learning what love really is as a mother. Motherhood is precious. You have this little human you created and all you want to do is protect and nurture this child, even when they bite your shoulder, throw a bowl of oatmeal on the kitchen floor, hit you with a shoe or run away in a parking lot. You are willing to sacrifice. You are willing to be patient. You are willing to do anything because you love them so much. And that love starts stretching to others because you understand everyone is someone else's child. I catch myself wanting to feed guests in our home, lend friends some clothes, forgive more frequently, and other "motherly" behaviors because my heart has learned, and is still learning, to love more deeply.
We are so excited for you and for your baby boy on the way! Now as you go your second time around are there any changes you are going to make when it comes to preparing for your little one to come?
With our first child, we were still in the thick of poor college student life. We had one blanket, a hand-me-down pack-n-play as the bassinet/crib, an affordable stroller, etc. We are so grateful for all the gifts we received and items we were able to afford on our own during that time! I ended up loving and appreciating the simplicity and minimalism with our first child, and certainly want to carry that over with our next. However, now I want to pamper myself and the baby a little bit! I don't think there's anything wrong with that haha. Having a new baby is so challenging. The lack of sleep, recovery from delivery, milk coming in, and this time a toddler to also care for!! The list goes on and on. So this time, I want to do things a bit differently to make things a little smoother. I'm going to get the cute moses basket that makes my heart happy. I will get a nice double stroller that will last a long time. I will certainly get more comfortable maternity and postpartum clothes (thanks EMME), ya know what I'm saying?
Do you have a favorite routine or activity that you do with your child/children?
My two favorite things to do with my son are 1) cooking and 2) bed time. I love to bake or cook with the help of my toddler. He even has a tiny little chef's hat and apron that makes my heart melt. We especially like to make cinnamon rolls, muffins, pão de queijo (brazilian cheese bread) and other baked goods. But my all time favorite routine is bed time. He takes a long warm bath every single night. We put on clean pijamas, brush teeth, dim the lights, read as many books as he wants, and then snuggle up in his toddler bed. My husband and I will sing the same song every night together, and our boy Calvin will chime in with the words he knows, with really good pitch actually! The cutest thing ever. We say a family prayer- and then Calvin proceeds to ask "mais! mais" or (more! more!) and so we pray about 5 times haha with his arms crossed and eyes shut. We turn off the lights and say goodnight. He loves to cuddle up with a ball and a ladle as of late...yes, a ladle.
Thanks for sharing your heart and wisdom with us, Lydia!