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Momma Interviews, Session 4: Meet Bee

The Momma Interviews is a new blog series by Catherine O'Brien, LMFT highlighting the thoughts, experiences and wisdom of a unique real-world mom each week, to normalize and validate the struggles and triumphs that are a part of the universally human experience of motherhood for women everywhere. 

Want to be the next featured momma?  You can sign up right here.

This week's momma asked that I refer to her as Bee.  Like her name, this interview is short and sweet, but undoubtedly charming.  …

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Momma Interviews, Session 3: Meet Ashley Robillard

The Momma Interviews is a new blog series by Catherine O'Brien, LMFT highlighting the thoughts, experiences and wisdom of a unique real-world mom each week, to normalize and validate the struggles and triumphs that are a part of the universally human experience of motherhood for women everywhere. 

Want to be the next featured momma?  You can sign up right here.

This week’s momma is Ashley Robillard. She has three kids with her high school sweetheart and is a Licensed Acupuncturist at Firefly…

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5 Self-Care Tips for New Moms

Featured on PsychCentral.com

PsychCentral recently published "5 Self-Care Tips for New Moms", featuring an interview with Catherine O'Brien, LMFT.  In it, she gives her best advice on simple, yet crucial ways that any new mom can add in some much-needed "me time" into her day. 

Why prioritize self-care when you have a new little human that needs so much more than you do?  Because, as O'Brien states in the article, "If you are tired and stressed out, honor yourself and take some time to ‘fi…

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Momma Interviews, Session 2: Meet Jessica, the Blogging Momma

The Momma Interviews is a new blog series by Catherine O'Brien, LMFT highlighting the thoughts, experiences and wisdom of a unique real-world mom each week, to normalize and validate the struggles and triumphs that are a part of the universally human experience of motherhood for women everywhere. 

Want to be the next featured momma?  You can sign up right here.

This week's Momma Interview is with Jessica Flannigan, Editor of Livethefancylife.com and ohboystyle.com.   She's a busy work-from-hom…

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Momma Interviews, Session 1: Meet Niki, the Minneapolis Momma

The Momma Interviews is a new blog series by Catherine O'Brien, LMFT highlighting the thoughts, experiences and wisdom of a unique real-world mom each week, to normalize and validate the struggles and triumphs that are a part of the universally human experience of motherhood for women everywhere. 

Want to be the next featured momma?  You can sign up right here.

Kicking off our inaugural post in this series, we have Niki, a 35 year old momma of one in Minneapolis, MN.  Check out our interview b…

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Happy With Baby’s Catherine O’Brien, LMFT featured on Psych Central

Recently, I’ve had the honor to be interviewed and featured in a two-part article series published on Psych Central.  The articles focus on ways for new parents to maintain connection with their partners during the intense transition period that happens when you bring home a new baby. 

Part One, 4 Pointers for New Parents for Maintaining a Healthy Marriage, focuses on the importance of developing a Postpartum Plan for expectant parents, ways to delegate tasks and ask for help in the day-to-…

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Teaching Empathy: The Opportunity in Refusing to Share

My daughter loves her older brother.

She really adores him and I love to watch their sweet interactions together.  Whatever he does she wants to do. This includes doing silly things, eating foods, making their beds, showing off some recent talent. This also includes wanting to play with all his toys--something he’s not always a fan of.  

I sometimes find myself telling him, “Just let her play with it!” as I hear him start to yell at her to stop.

“Don't yell at her!”  I scream from the othe…

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Raising Resilient Kids

Doesn’t it seem like every time you log on to the internet, whether it be Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, whatever…there is always something someone is telling you what you need to do with your children.  There’s a technique for handling any situation.  A research study supporting this or that philosophy. 

And a recent one that I’ve encountered many times--and I’m sure you have too--is teaching resiliency to our kids.

“Shoot,” you think! “I’m just trying to raise  happy, healthy, and well-a…

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Confessions of a Marriage Therapist

There is so much we do to prepare for our sweet baby's delivery.  But what have you done to prepare for after baby comes home?  Watch the video as I share our poor planning for our first child.  FYI, it doesn't have to be that way.  (Don't have time to watch a video...read the transcript below!)

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It's been six years since that fateful day; the day that I think really changed so much for me and the way I look at things and the way …

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When Parents have a Less than Perfect Day

Do you ever feel like there's something wrong with you because you have this beautiful baby and everyday doesn't feel like it's the best day?  Let me just tell you: that is so normal. Hear my thoughts on it in this week's video. 

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I know, people always say, "Oh, enjoy every moment." 

But quite frankly, how in the world do you enjoy every moment? 

And I know so much mom guilt comes up because it's hard and our feelings are all over…

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I am ENOUGH: Permission to Ease Up on the Busy-ness & Enjoy What Matters

I’m not perfect….but, I am enough.

It seems like a day doesn’t pass--shoot, who am I kidding--an hour doesn’t pass that I don’t think about all the things I HAVE to do.  I am such a busy person.  I have two kids, a husband, my own business, all of which need nurturing and demand my undivided attention.  I have parents and in-laws and friends to stay connected with and support with my love and friendship.   I have to-do lists and goals and…and…and….  Right?  We all do.  I’m not unique in all…

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How to Talk to a Mom that is Struggling

I hear this all too often.  A struggling mother will say that she feels misunderstood or that she's failing.  A partner, family member, or friend says the wrong thing with the best intentions or is unsure of what to say at all.  Do you want to know how to support a struggling mom?

 Check out this video to hear my take on it.  (Audio transcript is below.)

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I've been getting a lot of the same question over and over again, this week es…

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1st Grade?? How did THAT happen?

Life transitions seems to be happening everywhere.  

I have friends who kids are off to college, someone I know is getting ready for retirement, some are welcoming new job positions, new babies, a new sibling added to the the mix.  And then, there is the new school year.  So many kids have already started.  My son started back 2 weeks ago, but this week is is first full week--he's in 1st grade.  1ST GRADE!!!!!!  How in the world is that even possible? (See my post from last year when he sta…

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Children & Change: What our kids can teach us about resilience and fun

Roll_with_it_Happy_With_Baby

We’re moving.

Well, hopefully, we’re moving.  We’re putting our house on the market.

I told my husband last night that I’m scared of not knowing exactly what is to come.  I’m sad that this part of our life is ending, but also excited to see what this new phase brings us.

I’m not sure what’s going to happen.  What our next house is going to look like, if it will be set up the way I want, or whether we will have to adjust any expectations we are trying not to have.  While my overwhelming fe…

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Find Your Tribe: How to Build Your Parenting Community

Is new motherhood not looking or feeling the way you thought it would? 

If you find yourself asking questions like: How in the world do other moms get things done?  Why is this so hard for me?  Am I doing it all wrong?  I love my baby, but why do I feel so alone? 

It’s no secret that having a baby changes everything—and not just our physical bodies! 

Having a baby can change our relationship to ourselves, our partners, our friends, our work, our sense of time and priorities. 

The solutio…

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The Perfect Father's Day Gift

Happy Father’s Day!

Yes, I’m talking to you.

I just wanted you to know that we do notice all the things you do.  We might not always say thank you or acknowledge your support. Your encouragement.  Your fun and crazy ways.  But we do appreciate you.  

We know that you make this parenting job easier.  

We know that our children adore you.  We know that your ways are different, but that’s perfectly alright because no 2 people are alike and our children will encounter all sort of differences…

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Post Adoption Depression

Maternal Mental Health Awareness month (May) is over now, but I have another wonderful guest blogpost from my amazing intern, Elizabeth DeFazio.  Not only is she a mom, partner, and Marriage and Family Therapist Intern, but she also has a unique background of being a RN, so her perspective is invaluable. 

Guest Blog By: Elizabeth DeFazio, RN, MFT Intern

As Maternal Mental Health Awareness month ends we are reminded of the toll pregnancy and childbirth can take on a woman and her family. So…

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Why Aren't We Talking About It? Impact Of Having Kids On Your Relationship

Guest blog by Anna Osborn, licensed psychotherapist and relationship specialist


With May being Maternal Mental Wellness month, I decided to share a big secret with all of you.  One that folks aren’t talking about enough.  One that we need to share with each other.  One that we need to have open dialogue about.  One that needs to be shouted from the rooftop so that others aren’t hiding in shame and fear.

Having kids is hard on your relationship!  What? 


I know you’re thinking, well of cour…

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New Mama Sanity Savers: Three Things I Wish I'd Known Before Baby Moved In.

May is Maternal Mental Health awareness month. At HappyWithBaby.com we know it isn't always easy being a parent. But with support, encouragement, and education things can be easier. We are so exciting to be collaborating with some excellent clinicians, sharing some amazing articles, that offer just those things.

Guest Blog by: Shana Averbach, LMFT

"I love the idea of knowledge as power. When I was pregnant with my now 7-month-old son, I thrived on learning the functions of my symptoms. Nau…

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Mommy Monday with Michelle and Rachel

Week 2 of our momma interviews.  this week I want to share two of them.  What I love about these moms is that they had opposite exercise.  The point I want to note is that they are both amazing mommas.  

We all have different experiences and I think it is important to embrace our differences.  

It's what makes us unique!

[youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=phKs8JLET9U&w=854&h=480] [youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KTux-ua1TVs&w=854&h=480]

 

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Being a Human Mom is Tough!

Guest blog by: Mercedes Samudio, LCSW

When I think of maternal mental health, I think of more than just mental illness and postpartum depression. I think of the stereotypical super mom who is trying to do it all and ends up neglecting herself. I think of the pressures places on mothers in our world and how impossible those expectations are for mothers to reach. And I think, how can we support the notion that mothers are humans who have strengths and weaknesses and can’t do everything?

One …

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Mommy Monday with Cat

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 Starting a weekly series for the rest of May.  These are just quick interviews with different mommas (a different 1 or 2, each week).  

What I love about them, is that they are all amazing moms with different answers.  

Not one is better than the other.     

They are perfect examples of how different and unique we all are, but wonderful just the same.

 

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Happy Mother's Day to All Mommas!

To all the mothers, moms, mommies, mamas, mommas, grandmothers etc.  Happy Mother’s Day!

To the mom that has lost your child too soon, Happy Mother’s Day!

To the mom that has adopted her child(ren), Happy Mother’s Day!

To the foster mom, Happy Mother’s Day!

To the aunt that is also a mom, Happy Mother’s Day!

To the grandmother that is also a mom, Happy Mother’s Day!

To the mom who is missing her own mom, Happy Mother's Day!

To the mom that is still yearning to bring a baby home, Happ…

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Managing Big Emotions

May is Maternal Mental Health awareness month. At HappyWithBaby.com we know it isn't always easy being a parent. But with support, encouragement, and education things can be easier. We are so exciting to be collaborating with some excellent clinicians, sharing some amazing articles, that offer just those things.

Guest Blog by Bridget Bertrand, Psychotherapist, LMFT 83020

Emotions: the invisible and yet powerful experiences we all have. What is an emotion? Merriam-Webster calls it an “...af…

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May is Maternal Mental Health Awareness Month

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I distinctly remember being told (more times than I can count) that everything would change when I had a baby.

WHOA…they weren’t kidding!!!

I’ve gotten a lot of gifts from being a mom. And one of them is that I finally figured out what I wanted to be when I grow up. 

Don’t get me wrong I was already a therapist, and had wanted to be a therapist since as long as I could remember. 

But when I became a mother, I finally figured out what direction my practice would go.  I finally figured out…

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“I’m SO busy!” - How to Manage Your Schedule in Parenthood –Part 1-

Being a parent takes us to a whole new level of busy, because now we are actually responsible for someone else’s life. 

I talk with parents all the time about how to best manage their schedules.  In Part 1 of this 3 part series (3 parts as I post this, it could be more by the time I’m done with this), I discuss picking your priorities that will positively impact your family.

Take a listen:

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(Transcript of video)

Hi, This is Cat…

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11 Things I've Learned From Having Children

11 things i've learned

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Ways to Show Love to Your Partner

Valentine’s Day is a chocolate candy, and florist’s dream day, but it’s really about the heart and the thought.  It is making sure your loved one’s know you care and love them.  If it takes a holiday to get you to stop, that is fine.  However, it is MORE important to make sure that you take the time to tell your partner, your children, your parents, whoever it is, how you feel about them all year long!

Believe me I know how hard it is to make special time to do the “Valentines Day” things. …

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3 Ways to Increase Your Intimacy

In this edition of Happy with Baby's “3 Tips in 3 Minutes,” we're talking about three ways to increase your intimacy.

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As parents of young children, it can be particularly challenging to find time to make that intimate connection with your partner.  We would love to hear from you about what you your partner do to make sure that your relationship stays strong. Please share in the comments below!

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3 Tips in 3 Minutes ~ 3 Ways to Increase Communication

In this edition of Happy with Baby's “3 Tips in 3 Minutes,” we're talking about three ways to increase communication.

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We’d love to hear from you about your communication with your partner. Please share your great connection tips below.

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3 Tips In 3 Minutes ~ Coping With The In Laws

In this edition of Happy with Baby's “3 Tips in 3 Minutes,” we're talking about three ways to cope with your in-laws.

[youtube=://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-TdibIyYdLQ&w=640&h=480]

We would love to hear from you about what you do when you have particularly challenging family members, please share your great tips in the comments below.

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When it’s noT... the most wonderful time of the year

whenitsnot

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3 Tips in 3 Minutes ~ Family Traditions

In this edition of Happy with Baby's “3 Tips in 3 Minutes,” we're talking about three ways to create family traditions.

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Please share in the comments below what you are doing to create new family traditions.

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3 Tips in 3 Minutes ~ Supporting Dads

As promised, here’s Happy with Baby's “3 Tips in 3 Minutes,” where we're talking about three ways to support Dad when baby comes home.

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Please share in the comments below what you found most helpful as a new Dad, or how you support the new Dads in your life.

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3 Tips in 3 Minutes” ~ Three Ways To Support Mom When Baby Comes Home

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3 Tips in 3 Minutes” ~ Three Date Night Ideas

In this first edition of Happy with Baby's “3 Tips in 3 Minutes,” we're talking about three date night ideas.

 

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Please share in the comments below your favorite date night ideas.

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A Lesson In Living In The Moment


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Oh my goodness!

It’s been a long time since I’ve experienced the “back-to-school” hustle and bustle. If you’re on my email list then know that my oldest child just started kindergarten. It’s only been four weeks, so we’re still getting used to the routine of making school lunches, getting to bed on time, drop-off/pick-up, and doing the dreadful homework! Yikes, I don’t remember doing homework in kindergarten 

Last Friday, after what seemed to be an unusually long week, my husband (who’s…

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How getting a pedicure can make you a better parent!

What is it about becoming a parent that all of sudden we think we shouldn’t get to do things for ourselves?  This can be especially true for moms...right? 

 

So many times we compare ourselves to other people, to other mothers…enter in Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc. This creates feelings of inadequacy. This can be because we feel bad for not being at home with our children, or we feel bad for not “working.”   I think we can often get so caught up in how to do things right, that we ge…

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I am grateful...

 

My plan for this shortened week has me doing a lot of things in a short amount of time. One of those things is editing this blog post.

As anyone with small children knows (I suppose anyone with children of any age knows), the “best­ laid plans of mice and men oft go astray”.

First, my son woke up 3 times throughout the night with what seemed to be growing pains in his legs, and so I ended up rubbing his legs and soothing him back to sleep ­ 3 times. Then of course my daughter woke up for …

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Resolutions for your family

With the New Year comes lots of resolution making and breaking.  Often people forget these resolutions by the time February arrives. So what can you do to make them last?  Since the point of this blog is family and being happy with baby I want to focus on resolutions that emphasize creating a healthy and happier family.

1)            To take care of yourself.  Remember, it is very hard to take care of your family if you are being neglected.  Maybe one of your resolutions could be to go to b…

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“Managing” time for yourself!

You’re constantly on the go…going to appointments, going to work, getting groceries,  taking your child to day care. The list goes on and on. What we often forget in our never-ending to-do list is that one of the best ways to manage the stress in our daily lives is to take time out for self-care.

Part of the difficulty with finding this balance as a parent is the enormous amount of tasks that we have to do.  It can become very overwhelming.

First off, you need to be able to identify what y…

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Connecting with your partner after baby

Until I had a child myself, I did not value “date night”.  I find this to be an important tip that seems rather simple, but often is overlooked as children enter into your relationship.  It may not look the same as it once did.  However, making sure that you can get a couple of hours a week to spend time with your partner is ideal.  This will give you time to connect, which is key to working through the challenging times.  If you are able to connect with your partner in a positive way the th…

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Tips for Positive Interactions with Your Partner

If you have a child you are no stranger to finding that making time with your partner can be almost impossible at times!  It can be so hard to find time to talk to each other let alone trying to connect on a deeper level.

Many couples struggle during the first year of their baby’s life to maintain their groove with each other.  This can lead to dissatisfaction with the relationship.

There are steps can you make to keep your relationship with you partner strong, and even to make it stronger…

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Addressing conflicts


When you have a baby there are countless things to worry about. What type of laundry soap should you use for their clothing?  What diapers are best for the baby? The worries even extend to should the baby be sent to daycare or should one of us stay home? Then there is the ever-present issue of breastfeeding versus formula. The questions are endless and the answers are many, but one important thing that often gets forgotten in the pursuit of raising a happy child is the relationship with your…

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Just Between Moms: Educational and Support Group

Is the summer heat stressing you out?

Do you seem to have less patience for you partner?

YOU ARE NOT ALONE!

Having children often leads to a higher level of dissatisfaction in your relationship. The heat does not help, along with the stressors of work, childcare, housework, planning vacation, etc, etc, etc.

That’s why this months Just Between Moms Educational and Support Group we will be discussing:

- tips for understanding your partner
- ways for getting the emotional and practical supp…

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