Domusaurea Portraits Newborn Photos

True Story: I did my own newborn photos with Eleanor. I thought since was a photographer myself, I didn’t see why I needed to hire someone. While I love the photos and that Brice and I shot them ourselves, I always wished I had better ones of the entire family. So when Eloise was born, I knew I wasn’t going to make the same mistake. That was around the time the very talented, Renee, of Domus Aurea reached out to partner. Once I saw her beautiful and very professional looking photos, I knew this was my photographer.

Renee was amazing to work with. She was so patient (even when I had to feed Eloise half way through the shoot) and made the entire experience so enjoyable. Wrangling a two year old and a newborn was quite the feat but Renee never made me feel bad for all of the “whoops” that happened. Let me just say, Eleanor refused to take photos with anyone but herself for the first half of the photoshoot so I was worried we didn’t get any “usable” shots. I now laugh as I type that. Renee got so SO many usable photos that I cried when she first send them over.

I am beyond grateful for Renee and the magical photos she captured of my family. I know we will all look back on these and smile at all of the little things she was able to capture – like Eleanors squishy feet between the bars of Eloise’s crib. Photos are able to capture beautiful memories but they also have the ability to transport you back to exact moments in time. I will cherish these moments for the rest of my life!

Mary Hafner Family Photos Mary Hafner Family Photos Mary Hafner Family Photos Mary Hafner Family Photos Mary Hafner Family Photos

The Find
Whereabouts: Dallas, TX

Baby • Cygnet Living

I started following Cygnet Living a few months ago on Instagram. It is no surprise that I adore classic clothing for children. I am happy to spend money on pieces that are quality and timeless. Cygnet is exactly that. The way the monogram their pieces is so exquisite. I can’t properly explain how beautiful each piece is, all I can say is for you to check them out yourself. shop Cygnet here

• The Three Swimsuits I Love

Searching for a swimsuit is daunting, especially post baby. For my recent trip I purchased so many options that did not work. It was so discouraging. I finally found three that I really liked and are worthy of sharing! You can check out the swimsuits and read the post by clicking here.

Alexis Isabel Shoe

Outfit Details // Alexis Isabel ‘Uni’ shoeRhode Resort ‘Ella’ dress, J.Crew sunglasses

True Story: I have always saved my money for nice accessories. I feel like you can buy inexpensive clothing and make it look expensive by adding nice accessories. When I first graduated college I was earning next to nothing. I decided to stop highlighting my hair (thank goodness ombre was trendy), I never got my nails done, and I ate at home a lot. I chose to save and spend when I saw a nice accessory or something that would last. I still have and love the YSL ring that I saved up for and “splurged on” during that time. This is why I always recommend investing in quality accessories, they last!

During quarantine I made an effort to dress up everyday. I bought a few inexpensive, comfy dresses from different shops but wanted a fun shoe to dress them up. I searched and searched for something unique, beautiful and quality. When my friend sent me the Alexis Isabel Uni sandal I melted. Not only was the color to die for, but each jewel is handset in Napoli, Italy. Does it get any better quality and craftsman than that?

I have already worn them multiple times and love them more and more each time. The Italian leather gets softer and more beautiful with each wear. I know I will have these for years to come and like a fine wine, they will just get better with age!

Outfit Details // Alexis Isabel ‘Uni’ shoeRhode Resort ‘Ella’ dress, J.Crew sunglasses

at home • The Placemat

I recently went to a lunch at a beautiful home in Punta Cana. The table was set to perfection, which had me realizing I needed to up my placemat game! These Deborah Rhodes placemats were the same we ate on that day (except in green). I purchased the natural color immediately and am now wanting the pale pink! They are GORGEOUS! buy them here

Outfits • $14 Statement Earring

All of a sudden I have such a love for statement earrings. Since I dress pretty minimal I have found that it can add the pop my outfits often need. I absolutely love these sparkly earrings from Bauble Bar. They look like they are $50 but are on sale for $14! shop them here

Outfits • The Kids Sweater

I bought this for Eleanor a few months ago and received so many questions. But what I really want to know, does it come in my size? It is the sweetest little kids sweater and I can’t wait to dress Eleanor in it. It would also make for the perfect gift! shop it here

Everything You Need to Know About a Night Nurse

When I did a questionnaire a few days ago I was blown away by how many questions I received on a night nurse. Everything from “what are they,” to “What do they cost”. I was going to do an Instastory to answer all of your questions but newborn snuggles won over. Instead of Instastories, I hope this blog post will suffice. Here is a list of every question I received and your guide to Everything You Need to Know About a Night Nurse:

 

  1. What is a Night Nurse? What do they do?
    • I stole this defnintion from google: “A night nurse or baby nurse is an expert in newborn care who helps new parents during the first few weeks of life at home. Also called “newborn care specialists,” they typically work at night, feeding and changing the baby so Mom and Dad can get some much-needed rest.”
      With Eleanor I learned SO much from my night nurse. I would have been completely lost without her. She weighted Eleanor every week so we knew exactly how much she needed to eat. She also came up with a “wake” and “sleep” time schedule for me. She was a wealth of information and calmed my first time mom anxieties. The big advantage of a night nurse, minus the sleep, is that they also help sleep train your baby so by 10-12 weeks your baby is sleeping 12 hours a night.
  2. How long do they stay?
    • This is totally dependent on you. I always book mine for 12 weeks, however, I have read some people only book them for the first two weeks so they can rest and recover. My main goal for my night nurse is to help sleep train my baby to sleep through the night, so I need them to stay longer. But like I said, you should have full control over how long you want yours to stay.
  3. Can you use one if you breastfeed?
    • Absolutely! All of my friends breastfeed and they all use a night nurse. The nurse will bring your baby to you in bed and ready to eat. Once the baby is done they take the baby, change the diapers, re-swaddle and put the baby down. So you are able to feed your baby without having to fully “wake-up”.
  4. How much do they cost?
    • This is 100% dependent on each individual nurse and where you live. I would say on average a night nurse is between $25-$30 an hour. However, based on where you live you might find one for $20 or one that charges $35, but all of the ones I have found in Dallas were $25-$30.
  5. How many nights do they come?
    • This depends on what you prefer. I have friends that do 7 nights a week and have heard of people only doing 1 or 2 nights a week. I have our current nurse 4 nights a week with the opportunity to increase or decrease when I need to. Since I formula feed I like to do 4/5 nights so that I can get rest to deal with my toddler the next day, but I still get a few nights to be with and feed my baby at night.
  6. What hours do they work?
    • Again, this is totally dependent on what you or your night nurse prefers. Our original plan was to do 6:30pm – 6:30am so she could take the baby while I fed and bathed Eleanor. However, the one benefit of Covid is that Brice is working from home so he doesn’t have a commute home from work and is able to help a little more. Because of this we switched her to 8:30p.m. – 6:30a.m. with the opportunity to change. If you can’t tell, my current night nurse is VERY flexible, which I love. She can come at 5:30pm one night so me and my husband can go out to eat (which we aren’t doing in this current climate) or she can come later. It is whatever I need (find a night nurse like this). 8:30p.m. is great for us right now because Eloise is eating at 9p.m., so the nurse has time to arrive, chat, settle-in and then feed.
  7. How do you find one?
    • All of mine have been word of mouth from friends who have used them in the past. This is the absolute best way to find one. Just ask around. Any mom you meet, ask! Do not be shy! I have even heard of women asking the nurses at the hospital and finding excellent recommendations from them. However, I know word of mouth isn’t always possible (especially if you just moved to a new town) so I recommend googling services who provide night nurses. Going through a service can be more expensive but they do the background checks, etc. for you so you have peace of mind. I also think reaching out to children’s boutiques, your doctor, or other child services might lead you to a “word of mouth” score.
  8. Do you tell them what to do or do they run the show?
    • You should ALWAYS run the show when it comes to your child. ALWAYS. My first night nurse had a different approach than my current nurse but it was what I needed at the time. I needed someone to come in and tell me everything I needed to do or was doing wrong. For Eloise, I didn’t need that as much. However, I have never felt like I couldn’t tell my night nurse what I wanted and what my expectations were. I recommend interviewing each night nurse, ask a million questions, set your expectations, and go off who you feel most comfortable with. You will have a very innate sense of protectiveness over your newborn so whoever you hire, should put you at ease. If they add stress or anxiety, you don’t have the right nurse!
  9. What questions should I ask my night nurse during the interview?
    • Because my night nurses had worked with so many of my friends my interviews were sweet and simple. My main question was, “Do you sleep train?” However, if you are interviewing a nurse that has not worked with anyone you know I found this article to be a great resource of questions. I personally don’t think any question is off the table when you are interviewing someone to watch your newborn. Whatever answer you need to make yourself feel comfortable, ASK!
  10. How are you handling your night nurse during Covid?
    • I received this a lot. A few moms even said they cancelled their nurse out of fear. I spoke with mine and asked how careful she was being and her concern level. We both felt comfortable with the levels of pre-cautions we are taking and decided to move forward. Like anyone you let into your house, you can ask them to wear a mask and take their temperature before entering. However, like I said above, if having your nurse around is going to add stress, DO NOT HAVE HER COME. I am SUCH an advocate to find ways to cut as much stress out of your life as possible!
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