All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten (and from my mother)

Everyone deserves a safe and happy nest. Email not displaying correctly?
View it in your browser.

From the moment I stepped out of my front door to get coffee across the street at the local market, I was looking for inspiration for this Mother’s Day newsletter.

It came in the form of the #19 bus and the handful of mothers and fathers holding their children’s hands as they crossed the street on their way to school. 

Stop, look and listen before you cross the street. 
Use your eyes, and use your ears, and then use your feet.’ 

I had learned this rhyme in kindergarten a half a century ago, and suddenly my brain was on rewind, my heart was in control, and I could see ‘mothering’ is all around me.

All I had to do was stop, look and listen.

Just as suddenly I missed the days when my little ones reached for my hand to cross the street, and the second cup of coffee in my left hand (a long-shot of espresso) made me want to run home and tell George how grateful I am to have shared my life with him. I missed my mother, father, and siblings, and even the dogs that I have said good bye to — all this in a matter of moments just looking for inspiration to share with my Nesting Days ‘people’. 

Mothering, I think, is a state of mind, like the one I slipped into this morning when I could see just how precious all of life is. Some of the best ‘mothers’ I know are not biological parents or women, but people who live their life with an open heart and a willing hand. It knows no gender, age, ethnicity or sexual orientation.

Mother’s Day began with the mission of honoring our individual mothers for all they do for us, and also as a peace movement. I think I created Nesting Days for the same two reasons.

(Hop over to http://doubledutymommy.com/2014/05/nesting-days-newborn-carrier-review-giveaway.html/  to read the review we got this week from a mommy blogger fan when you’ve finished reading this. We really are changing how we welcome babies into the world, one baby at at time! )

At my niece’s recent wedding last month, she had her kindergarten teacher read an excerpt from the bookAll I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten — by Robert Fulghum.

I hope you will take a minute to read it, open your heart, think of your Mom, pat yourself on the back for all of the ‘mothering’ you do, and have a very…
Happy Mother’s Day!

JulieYour Chief Mother Officer
Nesting Days Newborn Carriers

———————————————————————————————————————————————-

All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten — by Robert Fulghum 

All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten.
ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW about how to live and what to do
and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not
at the top of the graduate-school mountain, but there in the
sandpile at Sunday School. These are the things I learned:

Share everything.
Play fair.
Don’t hit people.
Put things back where you found them.
Clean up your own mess.
Don’t take things that aren’t yours.
Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Flush.
Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.

Live a balanced life – learn some and think some
and draw and paint and sing and dance and play
and work every day some. 

Take a nap every afternoon.
When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic,
hold hands, and stick together. 

Be aware of wonder.
Remember the little seed in the styrofoam cup:

The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody
really knows how or why, but we are all like that. 

Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even
the little seed in the Styrofoam cup – they all die. 

So do we. 

And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books
and the first word you learned – the biggest
word of all – LOOK. 

Copyright © 2014 Nesting Days, All rights reserved.
You are receiving this email because you opted in on our website or at an event and want to learn more about the ultimate mother-baby bonding experience.

Stay Close to Nature

Screen shot 2014-04-26 at 5.05.35 PM

We’re at our cabin in the Sierra Nevada mountains for the weekend. It sits on ten acres of wilderness on the San Juan Ridge just outside of Nevada City. We bought the property twelve years ago and slowly turned an old barn into a sweet cabin. Recent rains have turned everything around us a vivid green, the  birds are singing, and spring has sprung.

IMG_0440Screen shot 2014-04-26 at 5.11.11 PM

 I drew the plans myself, and got them through the planning commission on the first try. I wanted the round, smooth rocks of the Yuba River to be the grounding force of the cabin, and the exterior to blend into the landscape. George and I spent weekends hunting through salvage yards for windows and doors, and the doug fir plank flooring from an old Oakland warehouse to give it ‘character’, and also save money.  I hunted through boxes of Heath Tile seconds to find enough to do the kitchen counter tops (which I laid myself) and their buttery tones became the color scheme.  The cabin literally glows, inside and out.  To transport everything, we bought a truck, which I love driving to this day, and when I’m here, I feel at peace.

photo (21)

 I needed to blog more…but the day is coming to and end and I’m going to enjoy it. I’ll leave you with this poem, that pretty much sums it up.

“I Meant To Do My Work Today”

by Richard LeGallienne

I meant to do my work today,

But a brown bird sang in the apple tree,

And a butterfly flitted across the field,

And all the leaves were calling me.

And the wind went sighing over the land,

Tossing the grasses to and fro,

And a rainbow held out its shining hand,

So what could I do but laugh and go?

Happy Nesting Days!

Julie

Chief Mother Officer

More twins!

Meet the Morrow twins, Elizabeth and Annabel!

The girls were born 7 weeks early and weighed just over 3 pounds at birth. After 4 weeks in the NICU the twins, healthy and tipping the scales at 5 pounds, came home.  Their mom, Jenny, had a freezer full of breast milk waiting, and their dad, Scott, had two of everything ready. I was invited over to greet the babies and tuck them in skin to skin against Jenny’s heart, which was literally bursting with joy.

Elizabeth and Annabelle Morrow

Elizabeth and Annabel Morrow

For the first six weeks home the twins shared the space in their Nesting Days carrier, but thanks to all that breast milk, the girls have doubled in size!  Each now weighs almost 9 pounds and are now ‘taking turns’.

“It was great when I could fit them both in the carrier together, but now that they are bigger, it is also great to be able to tuck one baby in while I hold the other.  Nesting Days is is still a huge help!”.

Screen shot 2014-02-17 at 5.26.24 PM

I’m so happy that the girls are thriving, and Scott and Jenny, you’re both awesome!  xoxo, Julie

IMG_0459

Honoring lessons from the past and bringing new ones to life

Nesting

When I was in college studying Early Childhood Education at the Merrill Palmer Skillman Institute in Detroit Michigan, I had the good fortune of having a teacher named  Luella Lutz.

I credit Mrs. Lutz for sparking the passion in me that still burns bright, forty years later, and has lead me to this point in my life, and to Nesting Days.

While I was her student this grey haired lady (she was younger than I am now)  went to Botswana, Africa to study the child rearing practices of the bush people, and came back to share her stories with us and her theories about ‘nurturing’.

One story that has stayed with me all my life, and is responsible in part for the creation of the Nesting Days Newborn Carrier, is the story she told about how the mothers held their babies out over a bush when they had to urinate or move their bowels. (There were no diapers in the village.)

Amazed at how easily they did this, she asked them how they knew when their baby needed to relieve themselves? Their answer was simply, “how do you NOT know?”

Her teaching technique was Socratic, and she left us on our own to come up with an explanation, without ever telling us ‘the answer’.

I ask you, the reader,  how do you think the mothers knew? (Hint: the point of this story in not about early potty training!)

Recently, neuroscience has rediscovered the wisdom of these ‘primitive’ women, and has presented us the answer: skin-to-skin contact not only stimulates the newborn’s innate survival instincts and reflexes, enabling it to survive, but also the mother’s maternal instincts and her ability to bond and care for her young.

My teacher could have told them that 40 years ago and saved a lot of new mothers a lot of hear-ache. I know my teacher would be delighted to see these changes taking place as a new generation has access to the latest research and tries to reconcile it with the vestiges of the past hundred years, which pretty much said the opposite and saw the woman in Botswana as uneducated and backward (my teacher being the exception).

I’m am also confident that she would be very proud of the Nesting Days Newborn Carrier I’ve invented and would want me to have it reach as many new mothers and their babies as possible, across all economic and social segments and around the world, and that is my plan!

However, she also instilled in me the realization that the human nest is more than a place. Our nests are where the roots of love are sewn and the early experiences in the first three months of life can have a profound effect on a little life.

With her, and all of the mothers and babies I’ve had the pleasure of knowing since then, I’ve created a workshop that explores the union of recent scientific breakthroughs and ancient wisdom, and how to use that information to create the optimal environment for  your newborn.

I’ve called it, The Art of Nesting, to honor the lessons of the past and to bring new ones to life. 

This workshop is really for anyone who is in interested in learning about the newborn’s natural habitat and how it shapes the infant’s world, but is especially helpful for expecting moms and parents with newborns.

We will delve into the role skin-to skin plays in both the newborn’s and mother’s well being and glimpse the world through the ‘senses’ of the newborn.  We will look at how quieting your analytical left-brain can free your intuitive right brain, rediscover the power of instinct and intuition and explore some old and some new techniques in breastfeeding and newborn care.  And finally, there will be time for Q&A, and a practical guide to take home with you to help you make the most of your nesting days.

The location of the workshop is at the beautiful new business hub called NextSpace, at 365 Vermont Street, on Potrero Hill.

I hope to see you there!

Julie,

Your Chief Mother Officer

Time to tune in to your baby…

Halloween is tomorrow, then it’s a race to the new year and a very busy season! Before getting wrapped up in the chaos of the holidays, take a moment to tune in to your baby. If you are expecting, it’s never too early to prep and if you have recently brought a new baby into the world, it’s never too late to learn your baby’s cues!

Here are some tips to get started:

LearningBaby'sCues

Want to learn more? Sign up for our workshop at NextSpace in Potrero Hill, San Francisco, on Saturday, November 9th from 10:30am – noon. We’ll be covering everything from laid-back breastfeeding to nesting!

Sign up here: The Art of Nesting

Here’s a clip from our focus group at Natural Resources early this year!

Julie,

Your Chief Mother Officer

our first workshop!

Come join us for our first workshop:

Nesting Days the Art of Nesting Workshop

The Art of Nesting

Creating the optimal environment for your newborn

If you thought that the ‘nesting instinct’ was just about buying cute tiny clothes and outfitting a nursery, think again! The latest evidence-based research is placing a new importance on ‘nesting’, and it has nothing to do with what you buy and everything to do with you.

Your skin, your body, your ability to learn baby cues, your milk, your attention and how you ‘attach’. Sound scary? Fear not! It turns out Mother Nature did an amazing job preparing you for the task of nurturing your baby.

You are a remarkable nest.

In this workshop you will learn about the innate infant instincts, mommy instincts, the importance of skin-to-skin, laid back breastfeeding, and baby body language. It is an exciting time to be having a baby! It is your time! Enjoy it to the fullest. It will be gone in the blink of an eye.

Saturday, November 9th 10:30am – noon
NextSpace Potrero Hill, 365 Vermont Street, San Francisco

RSVP here on eventbrite.  All mothers, dads and babies are welcome.