All posts by Mama Next Door

About Mama Next Door

mama to Caden. wife to D. wannabe photog. instagramming fool. weird obsession with domo and the hulk. world's worst baker yet i can't stop, won't stop. finding joy in the [extra]ordinary days of motherhood and hoping to one day finally find my inner Martha Stewart.

Current Obsessions

The most important day of the year is this Sunday!  But I’m sure everyone has already been thinking about spoiling the special women in their lives for a while now.

It’s my 2nd Mother’s Day (technically 3rd since  I became a mama the minute I found out I was knocked up  – well, after the tears and dread, but that’s another post) and it really is the best club to be a member of.

I’ve requested a simple picnic at the park w/ my men so hopefully hubby, who is notoriously bad at planning, will step it up and at remember to pack some sandwiches or a couple of Capri Suns. Of course, a few extra goodies is always greatly appreciated and never hurts.

Mother's Day Goodies

Mara hoffman

Chloé cross body handbag

Baublebar jewelry

Jo malone

Our First Vacation Away

I’m alive! Kinda, does half asleep, walking zombie count?

Back from vacation and now back on that daily grind. Aruba was awesome – I highly recommend a visit there if you can. But then again, you can’t really go wrong w/ a sugar sand beaches, turquoise waters, and endless adult beverages. And even better — my sweet mom, God bless that woman, came back from VN back in time to watch Caden for us so we actually got to relax and totally enjoy doing nothing. It was pure bliss. On our last day, we stayed in our room to watch a movie, something we haven’t been able to do in almost a year. (ok, and because I was a tad bit hung over). hehe.

After 4 days away from little man, we were ready to go home and smother him w/ hugs, but he totally was mad at us and pretended we weren’t even there when we got home for a whole 2 minutes – an eternity in toddler time. That little shit. He’s forgiven us, and I’ve given him many M&Ms to make up for it so all is right in the world again 🙂

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I watched this video today and it left a big impression on me.

The premise: from behind a curtain, a forensic artist sketches different women based on their descriptions of themselves vs how strangers’ see them

Raising my hand over here. I admit it. I am so guilty of self loathing and and criticism – these love handles, these post baby boobs, this nose, my small teeth…the list can go on and on. I think it is a part of our female genetic makeup to over-analyze and over-think everything. I know my husband loves every part of my imperfectness – that I do not doubt…but it’s a struggle to love myself when everyday we are bombarded with Victoria Secret campaigns, Kate Upton Cat Daddy videos, and clothes that I swear are getting smaller and smaller every season!

I’m still struggling w/ post baby weight – g’damn those last 7lbs are hard to shed – and there are days when I just feel like just rolling into the office in my yoga pants because nothing feels right. Don’t get me wrong. There are days that I feel like a hot shit supermodel because my jeans are holding and sucking in everything in all the right places. But it’s a process and a journey I think I’ll always be on as a woman. But as a mother, I know that I have to start loving myself sooner, rather than later. I may not have a daughter, but it’s equally important to me to teach little man to be grateful, happy, and confident of everything God gave him and appreciate his quirks and differences, and also of others.

To Wear or Not to Wear


Me: “What do you think of these shorts? Are they too pajama-y?”

Hubs after raising one eyebrow and looking me up and down (never a good sign): “Uhh, are you wearing them outside?”

Me: “YES. They have pockets! See?”

Hubs: “Can you make me some lunch?”

Me: “C’mon! Return or keep?”

Hubs: “Definitely return”

Me: “Whatever, I’m keeping them.”

Hubs” “WHY do you even ask when you already knew you were going to keep them?!”

These are cute, no?  They have pockets! AND elastic. a win/win on this mama’s hips!

                                                                                          Forever 21 – Serape Pattern Shorts

Friends & Family Shopping

I have a confession. I am a shopaholic. I don’t splurge on a lot of designer duds, I can’t pull the trigger on that but I can go nuts at Target w/o a blink of an eye and not think twice. Why, yes, now that I think about it, I do need to pick up a lamp, this picture frame, and colander while I’m here getting toilet paper.

I also window shop at least twice a week, usually before bed, aimlessly putting things in shopping carts all over the web. Then I get angry at myself for not going to bed sooner and wasting precious sleep time and abandon all together. Then I lay there for at least 20 minutes wondering if I should just buy it since I spent 30 minutes prior deciding what size and color to get. Oh, the vicious cycle.

Since we’re going on vacation soon, I’ve been using that as an excuse to get a little crazy with the spending, but this weekend is also Spring’s Friends and Family sales! 20-30% off. I mean, that’s the best time to stock up on essentials and basics M’IRITE???

  • Sephora – 15% off Beauty Insider Members. Use code CHIC. Stocking up on these:
  1. Clarisonic Cleansing Brushes – my 2x daily cleaning ritual
  2. Benefit Porefessional Primer – best primer to keep my makeup from sliding off my greasy face!
  3. Lotus Eye Gel – love this eye cream that keeps me looking less like the walking dead
  4. Clinique Moisture Surge Intense – never been a fan of Clinique until I used this product. My face is dryer than the Sahara during the winter and this kept me ultra moisturized.
  • Rebecca Minkoff – 30%; Use code Friends30
  • JCrew – 25% Swim; Use code SUNNYDAYS
  • Kate Spade – 25%; Use code S13FFUS
  • Gap – 30%; Use code 4FRIENDS13


The countdown begins for our first family vacay to ARUBA in just 15 days! I’m starting to overcome the dread I normally feel when I think about Caden on a plane for 4 hours and actually feeling a bit excited! I know I have a tendency to be a majorly impatient asshole with my hubs – and I admit it – kinda uptight on trips just because I’m not one to do well with changes. Throw a crazy, apple juiced up toddler into the equation, and we might have situation. HOWEVER, I am DETERMINED to make this trip memorable and Shutterfly album worthy and not drink myself into mommy obliteration to take the edge off. (Husband is not a drinker, so I could if I wanted 🙂 )

So of course, I have been shopping like a mad woman and using every possible excuse to go run to Target because we “need” something for Aruba. Since I doubt we will be basking on the beach and relaxing w/ a mai tai in hand w/ my little man running around, I’ve scouring the internet and malls for a swimsuit that is mommy friendly so I won’t have to suck in my left over baby weight 24/7 or run the risk of indecently exposing myself.

With all the drama and sickness boggin us down lately, I am uber excited for the change of scenery for our little fam.




Happy Valentine’s Day!!

I have a love hate relationship w/ Valentine’s Day. I hate all the fuss, the pomp and circumstance that comes with this Hallmark holiday. However, Husband’s birthday is also on the 14th, and as much as I kid and joke about getting jipped every year on Love Day, I never have expected anything extra. Hubby sent me flowers anyway and I got to kiss all over my little man. How lucky am I?

Forget Me Not

Today was hard.

I just had a feeling the second week would be worse than the first. From the moment I woke up, I rushed and hurried to get to work. Rushed so that I could possibly leave a little earlier, to fight the traffic back home – to hurry back home to my baby.

I was thrilled to see that he was awake – yes! no time wasted for hugs and kisses! – so I scooped him up from G-ma’s arms. And then it happens. The brows furrow. The tears well up. The bottom lip quivers. And then the wail that breaks my heart. He doesn’t realize it’s his mama. I’m like a stranger he doesn’t recognize. The same thing happened the day before and I chalked it up to gas. But two days in a row? MY BABY IS FORGETTING WHO I AM! Of course I bribe him with milk and eventually win him over, but still. so sad.

Everyone tells me it gets easier – but when does that actually start? Because to me, it’s getting harder and harder every morning to say goodbye. And now it’s becoming equally hard to come home.  😦

The Daily Grind

My maternity leave is now over and I finally had to go back to work this week. The days leading up to it were awful and full of anxiety. I woke up everyday with a heavy weight on my heart and a deep sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach knowing that I’d soon have to leave my precious little man. And everyday, I’d have to remind myself that every mom goes through this, they have all survived it before me, and moms everywhere after me will continue to make it through their first day back at work. I’m incredibly lucky to have G-ma be able to stay with us and watch Caden while I adjust to going back to work and not everyone is fortunate enough to have that support.

Honestly, my first week back hasn’t been bad thanks to my awesome coworkers and boss who have all been so great in welcoming me back and being understanding of my new mommy needs. I’m not sure how my 2nd week will be – it might finally hit me that I’m really back at work, doing the 9-6 shift, trying to beat traffic, having to rush home to spend just an hour with baby boy before it’s bedtime – and that this time, it’s back to the permanent grind and I don’t have another 12 weeks leave to spend with him. In an ideal world, I’d give work the finger and live in my pjs and snuggle with little mister man all day.
I never thought I’d be the one to want to be a housewife, a stay at home mom – but I find myself aching for it.  This former party girl? The one known as the Hulk? psshhh. I’m not sure if this is just a new mama phase and if it’ll pass but it doesn’t seem to be getting better in the mornings. It’s taking longer and longer to leave the cutest face in the world especially when he is getting so good at giving me this goofy grin. How. Can. You. Leave. This. Face? 


For 9 months I was on a rollercoaster of emotions about becoming a mom. This definitely wasnt planned, but we were joyful of God’s plans and what he had in store for us. I’m rolling with the punches and learning that shit happens. Literally. But nothing can ever trump the joys of motherhood, even poop up the back. And on the couch.