Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Our regular Mom Generations (formerly Pinks & Blues) readers will notice something different around the site.

First of all, we will no longer be updating the Pinks & Blues Girls blog – but don’t worry, we’re still blogging, and all our old posts can still be found here!

From here on out, we’re just going to be organizing our blogging differently… and each of our blogs will be separate:

Audrey can be found here, and she will continue to blog about being a girly-girl fashionista who moved from the big city back to suburbia to raise her 4 boys under 4 years old.

Jane can be found here, and she will continue to blog about life as a no-longer-a-newlywed dog mom who loves being an auntie and is learning to be more domesticated wife (because she wants to be).

Sharon can be found here, and she will continue to blog about life as a former teacher who is now a grandmother to 8 (soon-to-be 9) grandchildren 7 years old and under… and the joys and tips and secrets she has to share.

Also, you can find Mama Loves Giveaways, Smart Mama and Celebrity Scoop in their new locations by clicking the links.

Please update your feedreaders so you can (hopefully!) all enjoy our blogs from our new locations.

You may encounter some kinks as your navigate through the new site, so please just bear with us as everything is straightened out.

We will be having a GREAT contest soon to celebrate Mom Generations launch, so stay tuned!!

– Audrey, Jane and Sharon

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I remember so vividly bringing Audrey home from the hospital.

She had arrived six weeks before her due date (June 26, 1978… 30 years ago today!), on May 23. She spent a couple of days in the intensive care nursery, then graduated to the convalescent nursery, and then on to the regular nursery.

Audrey’s journey home took 12 days, but I was sent home on day 8. As you can imagine, going home without my baby was just so difficult. My husband and I drove to the hospital for each feeding during those 4 long days… so her homecoming was such a celebration of health and happiness.

As I walked into my kitchen with my bundle of joy, I sat down to feed her in her home for the first time. But all I could focus on were the dust bunnies dancing (no, mocking me) under the kitchen sink. We had one of those big basin sinks with the exposed plumbing underneath… and the dust bunnies were multiplying as I stared.

I remember bursting into tears. Not joyful tears of having my Audrey home. Not postpartum tears. But tears of doesn’t-my-husband-know-that-I-have-been-so-overwhelmed-with-missing-my-baby-and-recovering-from-my-c-section-that-he-should-have-known-enough-to-annihilate-the-dust-bunnies?

I knew I could care for my beautiful baby. I knew I could recover my health.

But those dust bunnies? Thinking of swiping them clean just pushed me over the edge.

So… ahem. I have been spending a lot of time at Audrey’s home helping with her boys. The older two are just about perfect with the baby, but a baby is a baby and he needs to be watched at all times. Benjamin is only 14 months old, so he needs supervision with kissing and caring. And Audrey is recovering from a c-section… besides having a husband, a home, and 4 boys under 4!

This is a message to Daddy… and all daddies out there. Here are 4 things to remember about new babies:

1. load the dishwasher, often
2. clear the counters, often
3. toss a load of clothing into the washing machine and dryer… and FOLD it
4. attack the dust bunnies

These “new baby” necessities will be remembered for years. I am going out on a limb here… but these 4 things are probably more appreciated than rest, food and changing diaper duties.

Clean goes a long, long way, Daddies!

(a note to Mommies… have I left anything out!?)

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Summer is officially here! While you’re taking a break from playing outside with the kids, be sure to check out these links from around the web:

  • From Dates to Diapers asks: Do you worry about your kiddos growing healthy bones and a healthy body? Enter to win a couple of the best products to keep your kids healthy – Staying Healthy
  • This Full House Reviews: Kit Kittredge – An American Girl Movie, the first feature film based on the hugely popular American Girl book series (she and her youngest daughter were invited to the New York City screening!) – Mom and Mini-me’s Most EXCELLENT Adventure!

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In the midst of baby central over here, I’d like to just give Boston area moms the heads-up on a campaign Mom Central is doing for American Standard.

They’ve created a site for Boston area moms to connect with each other about allergies and asthma, tips about keeping indoor air healthy while dealing with allergy season… and best of all, there is a chance to sign up to win an AccuClean whole home air filtration system.

They’re giving one away to a Mom living in the greater Boston area!

So if you live in the Boston area, check out the site HERE and sign up HERE.

Even if you don’t live in the Boston area, check out the site for the tips about allergies, asthma and keeping indoor air healthy!

(As most of you know, I recently began working as the Social Media Manager for Mom Central, so I’ll be sharing some of the exciting things going on there from time to time on my blog!)

And now for an adorable photo of Audrey and Henry, taken this morning:

– Jane

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The Bassinet Tradition

Today, Audrey referenced the “bassinet” in her post about getting ready for our little baby Henry.

The Bassinet.

The same Bassinet that Audrey’s father slept in when he was an infant.

Of all our family traditions, the Bassinet is the most special of all. And it began more than six decades ago with my mother-in-law, Florence.

By the start of 1946, Florence and Joseph Couto had been married for seven years, and still no baby. Now I must tell you here that Florence was born to be a mom. She was… and at 89, still is the most giving, caring, generous person I have ever known. Her two sisters were having baby upon baby, so Florence did shower all of her maternal-ness on her nieces and nephews, but she longed for her own bundle of joy.

And in fact, her older sister would find out that she was expecting her third child in October of ’46. Her younger sister would find out the she was expecting her second child in November of ’46.

Well, 1946 would turn a corner in the life of Flo and Joe. A little morning sickness and a positive pregnancy test would tell Flo that she too was expecting a baby… in December of ’46.

Can you say post -war babies!?

Of course, Florence was beyond joyful. She set about sewing and knitting and crocheting and preparing for this miracle that she had so longed for. And soon enough, a nephew arrived in October. A niece arrived in November.

And Stephen Couto arrived in December. All was right with the world. All was ready.

Except a bassinet. Florence had always admired and loved the white second-hand bassinet that her older sister had purchased for her first baby… and used for each baby. Florence had dreamed of her own child sleeping in that bassinet. But that would not happen because her baby nephew was using it.

So Florence set off to the same second-hand store where her sister had purchased her bassinet several years earlier… and there it was. An identical bassinet. The Bassinet that would start a long Couto family tradition.

That Bassinet was admired and loved by Florence, most especially while watching her own baby boy sleeping in it. But soon, Stephen would have to vacate the Bassinet… as Florence had the surprise of her life. Barry. My husband. Born 18 months later. Florence could not believe her blessings in having her two boys. Her Bassinet.

But wait. There’s more! There would be a third son, Richard, born two years later. Another baby for that precious Bassinet.

That would be it for Flo and Joe’s babies… but Florence wrapped and preserved that lovely Bassinet for another generation. Barry would be the one who listened to the stories, the traditions. And each of his children would sleep in that Bassinet. Keith. Adam. Audrey. Jane. Different ribbons, trimmings, bumpers and bows. Different skirts. Different colors. Each unique. Each touched by Nana Flo.

Each of Barry’s grandchildren has slept in the Bassinet. Taylor. Madison. Andrew. Jacob. William. Alexander. Benjamin. And when Henry arrives home… Henry will continue the tradition. Each touched by Great-Nana Flo.

My mother-in-law… Florence Couto… she has given our family more than a beautiful tradition of the Bassinet, always delivered with grand celebration to the home of the new baby. Florence has given us the tradition of the greatest love of all. Family.

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PR guru and all-around cool guy Peter Shankman wrote a post yesterday in which he gave advice to this year’s graduating class. And it got me thinking about my own experience as a high school graduate 10 years ago. Ten years ago TODAY, to be exact.

Wow. Ten years. Exactly 10 years ago today I said goodbye to the first (and most lengthy) phase of my education, grades K-12, high school diploma in hand.

And boy, was I ready to get out of there.

I thought about the future then, but on a much more short-term scale. At the time, graduating from college seemed light years away. Getting married, buying not one, but two houses, starting (and sticking to) a career… these things weren’t even on the radar.

And yet, these are some of the significant, life-changing things that these past ten years have brought.

It’s amazing how quickly time passes when you’re busy living life.

The high school years were not the best years of my life. At some points, they were downright horrible. Even back then, I remember thinking , “It has to get better than this.” Once I had that diploma in hand, I was ready to begin the next chapter of my life, leaving the rest behind. And I did.

I went off to college. I took 2 years off in between my sophomore and junior years. I transferred to Brown. I became an aunt. I became a first-time dog mom. I started dating the man who would become my husband. I graduated from college. I started my first real job. I bought my first house. I got married. I bought my second house. I helped start a company, Pinks & Blues and have watched it grow… so much so that we’re renaming and rebranding it as Mom Generations (like, soon!). I started a new job as the Social Media Manager at Mom Central.

All of these things – college, career, marriage, family – they were floating in my mind 10 years ago today as part of the future… but the way that they would be concretely reached within the decade could not have been determined. And I kind of like it that way.

Regrets? I don’t believe in them. Sure, sometimes I wonder how things would have turned out if I had done something differently. But there is no other place I would rather be in my life right now, so somehow everything turned out as it was supposed to.

In many ways, I am the same girl I was back on June 11, 1998. But time and experience has made me a bit more sure of myself. A bit more confident. A bit more assertive.

There are some things about that girl that I have held on to. Her penchant to root for the underdog. Her empathy for others.

Her excitement about the blank slate known as the future, just waiting to be filled with experience.

I didn’t attend my 10 year reunion last month. I felt no need to relive that uncertainty and insecurity that 10 years has taken me to the other side of. If someone had told me then that 10 years from now, things would be better, things would work out, things would be good (actually, maybe my parents did tell me that…!), I may not have completely believed them (or been listening).

But I do now. Because now I know.

– Jane

My senior portrait

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Today, my best friend turns 60.

Barry. My boyfriend. My honey. My love.

The father of my children. The grandfather to my grandchildren.

60. Did I say 60?!

I met Barry when he was 26 years old. I thought he was a bit “old” because I was a mere 22. But it didn’t matter, because it was love at first sight.

I first fell in love with this hot guy (did I just say “hot guy”?) because he was the funniest guy I had ever met. All I did was laugh. Of course it didn’t hurt that he was pretty good-lookin’. We both also loved the Red Sox. We both loved the beach. We both loved to read. And did I mention that he was that perfect combination of intelligence and common sense. Barry could, and still can, figure out anything about anything.

Barry is a gift. He is a gift to everyone he meets. He is respected for his honesty. He is treasured for his ability to include everyone in his circle… there are no divisions or levels. His seemingly endless energy is a marvel. He honors people.

Barry writes poems. He sings (well, he tries). He loves to dance. He loves the Celtics (go, Celtics). He loves tennis. He loves golf. But most of all, Barry loves his family. This love is written on every crease in his face. In his smile. And in his voice.

Today, Barry turns 60. My “Rocket” turns 60. And that young guy who I fell in love with all those years ago… he just gets more perfect by the day. Thank God I didn’t let his age get in the way.

So I give a shout out to the world… HAPPY BIRTHDAY, HONEY-BOY!

This world got a miracle the day you were born. June 11, 1948.

I love you into eternity.

-Sharon – Honey-Girl

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