Meet Our Favorite Nashville Moms

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We are so excited to be heading to our 1st Fall Gearapalooza stop this year in the Music City!  We can’t wait to be back in Nashville on September 12 evening!  It’s going to be so great to bring this ultimate baby gear and registry event to the city — as always, we will be featuring TheBabyGuyNYC who will have the BEST baby gear, products, services + safety information in one action-packed night!   If you’re a new or expectant parent this is a DO NOT MISS event!  The gift bags are also incredible and there are thousands of dollars in giveaways (strollers, car seats, carriers, and so much more)!

To celebrate our arrival in Nashville, we want to introduce you to some of our favorite Nashville moms!  We are so lucky to have these amazing women as part of our BCB community & most will be joining us at Gearapalooza so be sure to stop by and say hi!

 

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Dawn Burns

Age: 38

Kids and Ages: Owen (9) and Lily Caroline (6)

Where do you live: Nashville, TN

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: I am the publisher of a lifestyle and family blog, The Nashville Mom. I also host a podcast sharing makers, doers, dreamers called The Nash Chat.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? What a joy it has been to see my children grow into their unique personalities and to become our best, little friends!

What’s your best “Mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? It’s the little things-like keeping paper plates on hand to make the mundane dinners seem a little bit more fun! Or taking meals outside! Adding a little something special on the day to day to make memories!

What is the best part about where you live? Nashville is full of family fun! There’s always something fun to do from outdoor events, concerts, museums and so much more!

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. We love exploring the rivers around Nashville-canoeing, swimming and catching crawfish!

Favorite date night in your hometown. It is always a special night seeing a show at The Grand Ole Opry

What are 5 things you could not “mom” without? Clorox Wipes, Google, snacks, my husband and friends!

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? I love to read, watch old movies or stroll the aisles of Target.

Who are your “mom idols?” Sally Clarkson has been a mentor to me for years through her books, blogs and podcasts! She is someone I truly look up to!

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? I have made the best girlfriends through my church. They are always there to listen, have fun with and be supportive of each other!

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? To not sweat the small stuff, just take it one day at a time and enjoy each stage.

How do you balance it all? Juggling work and motherhood can be tough! I try to plan ahead, not add too much to my plate and my husband and I work together as a team.

If you had a theme song, what would it be? Ha-I am a Clemson graduate and our football theme song would be my go to. Always ready to be “in the game”.

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it:  The Nashville Mom is a place to share about kid-friendly places, people and events in the Nashville area! I share all my favorite spots to go with your family, girlfriends, spouse, etc. I also host events to bring moms together! On my podcast, you’ll get to meet lots of my favorite inspiring people! Join along on @thenashvillemom and @thenashchat

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Laura Janicek

Age: 42

Kid(s) and Ages: Donovan (16)  Doug (15) Mikey (13) Lexi (8)

Where do you live?  Brentwood TN

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: I run my photography studio, Laura Janicek Photography, in Brentwood, TN.  My business focuses primarily on newborns, first year babies and expectant mothers.  I’ve been photographing newborns and their families since 2013 and I moved into my commercial studio in 2016.  My photography style is clean and classic with simple props and a lot of white.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? I think the biggest reward of motherhood is just being mom.  I love being the one my kids come to for just about everything and the one they turn to when they need help, reassurance, or a hug.  I love when they’re excited to tell me something or show me something.  I know that won’t last forever, so I am hanging on to it as long as I can!  My teenage boys often still come down to give me a hug goodnight… that is the best. 

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!)  Meal planning is my biggest thing.  If I don’t plan out what we’re eating ahead of time, we most likely won’t be eating good dinner.  I use a program called Plan to Eat and it is AWESOME.  I’ve loaded my most of my commonly used recipes (as well as lots of others that ultimately I’d like to try)  They’re all in one spot where I can drag them into the calendar/ grocery list each week.  It’s incredibly user friendly and such a great way to feel like a good, organized mom.  It’s also a great way to get out of a dinner rut.  Highly recommend!!

What is the best part about where you live?  Because I come from the Chicago area, I think the weather in Nashville is the best thing about living in Nashville.  The winters are so mild.  Even if it’s really cold outside (which definitely does happen!) the sun will often be shining so it doesn’t bring down your mood and energy.  It’s also really nice to live in an area that allows you to experience four seasons each year… without having to go too long or extreme in the winter.  😉

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. There are a lot of great things to do with kids in Nashville.  Tailgating for the Titans games is probably my favorite thing to do as a family.  I was surprised to learn how family friendly tailgating was here.  It’s just as much fun as going to the game and makes for a full day event!

Favorite date night in your hometown.  Anywhere with great food and live music!

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without?  (Products, apps, anything that helps you to be a better mom.)

  1. Plan to Eat
  2. Qustodio (App for monitoring kids device usage)
  3. Kroger Grocery Pick Up
  4. Google Calendar
  5. Life 360 app (for my new driver)

 

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag?

Sadly I no longer have a diaper bag for my kids, but when I did…

  1. Snacks, snacks, snacks
  2. Wipes/ Sanitizer
  3. Little toys/ crayons/ paper
  4. Plastic grocery bags for garbage and wrappers
  5. If I had a baby now, I would have the Summer Infant Soothe and Vibe portable soother. I use it in my newborn sessions all the time to help settle my babies. You can find it on Amazon!!

 

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do?  I actually love planning and thinking about future projects.  That tends to be my go to when I have some quiet time to myself.  If I don’t want to think too much, I love a great tv show or movie or if I’m feeling indulgent… a good old spa day.

Who are your “mom idols”?  I don’t know if I really have any true mom idols… I definitely have friends and family members who have characteristics that I really admire.  It might be how they handle specific situations, their creativity, sense of humor or just their overall mom-vibe. Everyone has things that they’re really good when it comes to parenting and it’s nice to notice and try to emulate what I admire in different people.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? My very best friend has 3 boys who are just a little older than each my three boys. It’s really nice to have someone who’s been through all of the stages as I enter them with my kids.  We definitely understand each other!  We met playing tennis about 10 years ago when the boys were little.

I’ve always sought a lot of advice from my own mom.  I know she loves my kids (and me!) and wants the best for all of us, so she has always had invaluable advice.

It’s true when they say ‘ it takes a village’.  There are so many parents who I’ve gotten to know through the kids shared activities and friendships.  We all help each other out as far as carpooling, playdates or comparing notes, stories and experiences.  We’re all in this thing together!! 

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Stay true to your own heart when it comes to parenting.  You’ll get lots of advice from lots of different people.  It doesn’t hurt to listen to different perspectives.  Welcome the advice and always keep an open mind…  but then always follow your own gut.  Ultimately, you know what’s best for your family.  

How do you balance it all?  For me personally, I think not trying to do it all has actually helped me feel more balanced.   I have to prioritize and constantly remind myself to say focused on my priorities.  Ultimately that means that I say no to a lot of things that I would love to say yes to in a world with unlimited time and energy.  I’ve have to learn to be ok with not doing it all.  😉

If you had a theme song, what would it be?  I really love Have it All by Jason Mraz.  I don’t know if that’s necessarily a theme song for me, but it’s absolutely everything I hope for my kids.  Does anyone NOT want their kid to be as fascinating as a snap bracelet?? 😉

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it: You can follow me on Instagram and my website.  My website is a great place to see samples of my work and to learn more about me, my business and why I think photography is so important.  I have a few behind the scenes videos on my website that I think are helpful for new parents.  My Instagram is a good place to view current work and to see adorable babies who’ll make you smile.

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Caroline Broadbent

Age: 27

Kid(s) and Ages: Gatlin (2 years) and Brooks (Due November 2019!)

Where do you live? Franklin, TN

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: As of last week, I am officially a SAHM! I have a bachelors degree in nursing, and most recently worked in the recovery room at Williamson Medical Center. I also blog in my spare time, focusing primarily on motherhood, marriage, and mental health topics.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? Watching my son grow to be a kind human is absolutely the most rewarding. We all try so hard to parent our kids to the best of our ability, and constantly worry we are screwing them up. To watch them share, show love, and give back makes it all worth it!

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!)

Pedialyte popsicles when your little one is sick, instead of the liquid form! They like them so much better, so you can push the fluids easier!

Use a Haakaa (can buy on Amazon) on the opposite side while breastfeeding, to catch all the milk that leaks! This way you start building your freezer stash without ever having to pump.

What is the best part about where you live? The small town feel of Franklin has always been my favorite. It is quaint, while being in such close proximity to the big city. My husband and I were both born and raised here, so it is so special to us to raise our boys here as well.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. We love going to the Farmers Market with our son every Saturday and buying fresh fruits/veggies, flowers, and sweet treats. We also love going to Cheekwood gardens, as well as the local splash pads and parks!

Favorite date night in your hometown. My husband and I love going to a restaurant called Scouts Pub in Westhaven. It’s off the beaten path, with a farm fresh menu that is constantly changing. Not to mention a great drink menu and beers on tap!

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without?

  1. Breastfeeding App! Any of them will do, but it is SO helpful to keep track of how long you are feeding, and which side your baby last fed on!
  2. White noise machine/ Shusher. These are ESSENTIAL for baby sleep. We had one in the nursery, the stroller, and one for traveling!
  3. SnuggleMe Organic/ Dockatot. Regardless of which one you prefer, having a safe, comfy place for your little one to lay is such a lifesaver.
  4. Nose Frida/ ALL of the Frida products! If you haven’t discovered this treasure trove of products, you’re missing out. The nose Frida is so much more effective than a regular bulb syringe, and now the even have products for mom postpartum.
  5. Baby carrier! We were not huge fans of baby wraps, but I swear by the Ergobaby 360. Baby can face you or face the world, the mesh is breathable and not sweaty, and the buckles around the shoulders and hips save your back.

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag?

  1. High chair wipes. Use them on restaurant tables, chairs, toys that fall on the floor, etc.
  2. Wet bag. I cannot tell you how many times we have had blow outs or leaking diapers in public. When an outfit gets soiled or wet, you just stick it in your wet bag and its sealed until you can get home to wash!
  3. Copper Pearl multiuse cover. Use it as a cover for the carseat, breastfeeding, highchair, or even a grocery cart.
  4. Sunscreen- we use and love Babyganics!
  5. Extra outfits (Including socks!) This is a no brainer, but you’d be surprised how many times I’ve forgotten this!

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? Sleep. (haha, only kind of kidding) My other go-tos are reading, writing, exercise, and online shopping!

Who are your “mom idols”? Shannon Tripp (@shan.tripp) is definitely one. She is a nurse, and a mom of four. She does videos on baby choking, CPR, safe medications, and so much more. Genius!

Lynzy (@lynzyandco) is another one. She is SO relatable and really focuses on affordable outfits, products that make life easier, and fast/easy recipes!

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? Two of my best mom friends are Maggie and Payton. I met Maggie on the “Moms of Franklin” Facebook page, after I posted asking for mom friends! (haha, it can get lonely!) Maggie is the social planner, and always hosts activities and playdates! Payton and I met while we were both very pregnant with our first boys at a wedding. We were hoarding the appetizers, and that’s when I knew it was meant to be.

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? No mom is an island; You were never meant to do this alone! I’m pretty sure this is a cliche piece of advice, but if you can master asking for help and using your mom tribe, it is the KEY to surviving motherhood.

How do you balance it all? I don’t! There are days when I am just surviving. But I will say- you need a planner! Sit down with it at the beginning of each week and plan out meals, activities, and appointments. Write it all down so you are as prepared as possible. Other than that, just wing it. Each day is a chance to start fresh!

If you had a theme song, what would it be? I Will Survive- Gloria Gaynor haha!

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it: You can follow me on Instagram and my website.  My blog started as a private, online journal that I used as an emotional outlet throughout nursing school. After graduation, I had a few traumatic years and events that shaped who I am as a person today. I decided that keeping my words private was not serving anybody; So, I began posting public entries every few months. My goal is simple: To relieve others of the pressures of perfection, by providing an open and honest account of my life. The struggles, the shortcomings, and the triumphs are all on display here without a filter or rose-colored glasses. So, whether you are a mom, a spouse, just finding your way, or even struggling with mental illness… there is a place for you here!

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Whitney Miller

Age: 32

Kid(s) and Ages: Miller Humphrey 3-years-old, Harrison Humphrey 5-months-old

Where do you live? Franklin, Tennessee

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: I am a chef (Fox’s season 1 MasterChef winner) and cookbook author.  I am blessed enough to be able to keep my boys home with me and work from home. I work with companies as a brand ambassador and recipe developer. I am a contributor to magazines.  I am currently pursuing a cookie business.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood?  I love being a mom. It is one of the best gifts I have ever received. Motherhood opened my heart to a love I never knew existed. My boys are my whole world. I would do anything for them.

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!) I have learned that instead of struggling to get things done with your kids around. Get your kids involved with what you are doing. For example, my son loves helping me unload the dishwasher.

What is the best part about where you live? I love Franklin. Everyone here is so nice and will do anything to help you.  It is a very family friendly city.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. I love taking my sons to the park. My big boy loves to play. It makes my heart happy seeing him happy.  

Favorite date night in your hometown. My husband and I are foodies so we love trying new restaurants. We will venture into Nashville on occasion as well. We always end up finishing the night with Jeni’s Ice Cream.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without? Reminders on my phone help me to remember things when mom brain hits.

Books

Essential Oils

Music

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag?  Wipes, burp cloths, change of clothes for my boys, diapers and pull-ups, and water bottle

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? I love to read magazines especially food and décor.

Who are your “mom idols”?  My mom is my mom hero. She was so patient with my sisters and I. I am encouraged to be more patient when I think of how well she parented us. She continues to encourage me by the example she sets with being an amazing grandmother.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? I am blessed to have met my mom friends. We met in different places including church, our neighborhood and events.

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Do not be hard on yourself. Take one day at a time.

How do you balance it all? It is not easy. I have mom guilt for not spending enough time with my oldest son while I try to get my work done and be attentive to my baby boy. I do my best each day to balance my work with my mom role.

If you had a theme song, what would it be? “This is the Stuff” by Francesca Battistelli

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it: I love inspiring others to have fun in the kitchen cooking.  I also encourage moms to create memories in the kitchen with their kids. My website features delicious recipes.  My social media showcases beautiful food, restaurant dishes, and my kids. Follow me on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Bonnie Dalager

Age: 47

Kid(s) and Ages: I have a 15 year old

Where do you live? Brentwood, TN (near Nashville)

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: I work part-time doing IT tech support at DaVita. I also am a freelance web designer (heymisterdesigns.com) and I run several websites, including Music City Moms.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? The biggest reward has been watching my child grow into a bright, funny, artistic person.  

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? Do as much as you can the night before because mornings are always hectic. And do the dishes before you go to bed. A clean kitchen sink starts the day off right.

What is the best part about where you live? I love that middle Tennessee has all four seasons, the people are friendly, and it’s just a nice place to live.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. My teen would rather hang out with friends these days, but we used to frequent The Adventure Science Center, Cheekwood Estate & Gardens, The Frist Art Museum, and The Nashville Zoo.  

Favorite date night in your hometown. There’s so much to do here, it really depends on what you like. My favorite, though, is eating at The Melting Pot.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without?  Family, Friends, Google Calendar, the Bible, and Facebook

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag? It’s been too long and I don’t remember, but in my current bag, it’s always helpful to carry Band-Aids, Advil, hand sanitizer, and a phone charger.

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? I like to get caught up – on the computer, yard work, house work, seems like there’s always something to do. But I do like to get out of the house some and play Pokemon Go with friends. My child got me into it and then quit playing. I’m still hooked.

Who are your “mom idols”?  All of the mothers that have gone before me – my mother, step-mother, mother-in-law, grandmothers – they are all rock stars and taught me so much.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? Most of my mom tribe came from my child’s preschool and elementary school years. I was fortunate to be able to be so involved in volunteering at school to meet other moms and build those friendships.

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? You don’t have to be perfect. You don’t have to do it all. Ask for help when you need it. Don’t let pride get in the way. We all struggle those first weeks, months, even years. It takes a village. Really, it does.  

How do you balance it all? It’s very hard to balance everything. I used to stay up late at night to get work done on the computer after my child went to bed. Now, with a teen, it’s preferable for me to be in the other room (ha!) so it does get easier.  

If you had a theme song, what would it be? According to BuzzFeed, it’s “Don’t Stop Believin’”

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it:  Music City Moms is locally owned and operated by moms in the Nashville, TN area. We believe it is important for moms to have a safe place to connect with other moms. Music City Moms is an online community where you are safe and free to talk about anything and everything about being a mom. We can’t wait to meet you!  You can find them online, Facebook and Twitter!

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Kelli Carver and Emily Matlock

Age: Kelli, 36 and Emily, 33

Kid(s) and Ages: Kelli – Owen, 4 and Griffin, 1  Emily – Nate, 4 and Wesley, 2.

Where do you live? We both live in Nolensville, TN.

Elle Jackson Photography

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: Kelli is a dance teacher at a local dance studio and owner of KC Dance, a dance program for child care centers and  Emily is a healthcare consultant.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? Getting to experience life through our children’s eyes.  It is like seeing things for the first time all over again.  Also, all of the compliments.  There is nothing like a “Mommy, good job!” when cleaning up a mess you didn’t make to really lift up your day. 

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!) One hack we love is to set up a basket with wipes and diapers in every room.  It is nice to have a cute changing area, but more often than not you will need wipes IMMEDIATELY.  Also for a rainy day activity, put the kids in swimsuits and throw them in the tub – indoor swimming!

What is the best part about where you live? We live outside of Nashville so one of the best parts is all of the music! There is live music everywhere and it is great entertainment for the kids.  The best part about the small town we live in outside of Nashville is it is a lot of young families in a similar stage of life.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. We love exploring new places – restaurants, breweries, events, festivals, etc. 

Favorite date night in your hometown. Anywhere that we wouldn’t take our kids! First stop would be a rooftop bar followed by a nice restaurant that doesn’t have a kids menu.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without?  Amazon Echo – this thing is great for playing music, but we love using it to set timers for the kids (5 minutes left before we leave, etc.), Hatch sound machine – it changes colors to tell the kids when they can get out of bed and you can set it automatically or change it manually on your phone, Halo sleep sack, Marco Polo app – the best video chat app to immediately alert your mom friends when you are having “one of those days” or need advice and Netflix.

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag? Hand Sanitizer, gummies or candy for bribes, sunscreen, more wipes than you think you need and extra clothes for everyone.

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? Pedicures just feel so luxurious these days and we also have a monthly girls dinner with our friends to keep us sane.

Who are your “mom idols”?  We are really lucky that our own Moms are incredible women to look up to not just as parents, but also as strong women.  Also, Chrissy Teigan for keeping it real.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them?  We met each other at Auburn University and our husbands went to University of Tennessee together so we are really lucky that  a lot of our mom tribe has known each other since our college days and we’ve grown over the years adding in other friends or wives of our husbands’ friends.  We have a really amazing group that ranges in likes, dislikes, careers, age and life stage. 

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Trust your gut. You are going to get lots of advice and read lots of stuff on the internet, but at the end of the day you know your child best.  

How do you balance it all? We don’t! Seriously, it is not always possible to keep all of the balls up in the air so sometimes you just need to let. it. go.  For us it is learning when to say no and also that it is ok to not have the perfect Pinterest lunch sent to school (PB&J does not need to be cut into stars to be delicious). 

If you had a theme song, what would it be? Not a theme song, but our anthem would totally be Party Rock.  There are going to be some hard days, but sometimes you just have to blast this song and have a dance party.

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it: Nashville Parent Guide is our way of showing off Nashville in a different way.  It is not your typical kid-friendly activities, but more like fun activities that are also kid friendly.  We like to explore different restaurants, bars, festivals, etc. that you might not think about being specifically for kids, but great places that you can bring your little ones to.  It is easy to stay at home when you have little kids, but NPG helps us get out and experience new things with them and we hope it encourages others to do the same.  You can follow us on Instagram or check out our blog!

 

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Alyssa DiCicco

Age: 33

Kid(s) and Ages: Hollyn (4), Adler (1 1/2)

Where do you live? Franklin, TN

Kara DiCarlo Photography

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: I own two websites that are great Nashville resources. The first is Nashville Baby Guide – we cover family stories in Nashville and feature newborn photography, family and lifestyle photos, birthday parties, baby showers and even business spotlight interviews!

My second site is Nashville Bride Guide – covering Nashville engagement sessions, real weddings, styled shoots, vendor interviews and more! Both are great places to find resources for your wedding or for your kids.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? Motherhood is the absolute best! It’s definitely hard to juggle being a mom and owning two businesses, but I wouldn’t trade it. Seeing your kids learn new things and teaching them how to interact and even put smiles on others’ faces is so rewarding. Also feeling this new kind of love as a mother is unlike any other feeling. It really has helped me understand more how God loves all of us as his children. 

What’s your best mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!)  Oh man, I hate going to the grocery store, so my mom hack is getting my groceries delivered with Shipt!

What is the best part about where you live? I absolutely love living in Franklin, TN! There are so many families and kids around my kids’ ages. And there’s so much to do that is kid-friendly! We live close enough to walk to The Factory which is an indoor shopping area with lots of fun places to eat and shop. There’s a school right outside of our neighborhood as well, so we like to take the kids to play on the playgrounds on weekends and after school lets out.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. We’ve made it a tradition to go to the Farmers’ Market every Saturday to get Ellie’s Donuts. It’s so much fun and the kids look forward to it every weekend.  

Favorite date night in your hometown. Seeing a movie at The Franklin Theatre and then heading out across the street in Downtown Franklin to Gray’s on Main for dinner. And maybe out for ice cream or drinks afterwards.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without? I could not mom without my kids’ camelback water bottles. We take them everywhere! Also, the munchkin snack cups – they help us to not make a complete mess and leave a trail of crumbs everywhere we go! I also take my City Mini Stroller everywhere – and the velcro cup holder add on is a game changer. I can hold all of our cups and my cell phone in there for easy access. This might be silly, but my iCal – I’ve signed my kids up for a lot of activities already and I wouldn’t be able to keep our schedule together without it! And finally, coffee – haha! It’s a must for me every morning – especially if the kids have had a rough night and we have lots to do the next day!

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag? Oh, I’ve got to have my travel diaper changing pad (with diapers and wipes of course).

A change of clothes and underwear for the kids – you never know what’s going to happen. And my friend just told me to add in an extra shirt for yourself. There have been countless times the mess spills onto me, so having a fresh shirt for me is a game changer.

Wet bags for such incidents!

Snacks and water

Toys

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? My alone time consists of totally checking out… watching TV and scrolling through my phone. I also love to online shop – but it’s mostly browsing through pretty dresses that would be pointless for me to purchase since I have nowhere to wear them! Haha!

Who are your “mom idols”?  Of course I look up to my own mom – she worked from home while we were growing up. My brother and I were running around being crazy all the time and she somehow managed to still get work done while being a mom. As a mom now, I know how hard that was for her to juggle both! I also have mad respect for moms who foster or have a child with a disability or illness. They are the real heroes here and do not get the recognition they deserve.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? I have the best mom tribes! I’ve been blessed to have many groups of friends since moving to Nashville. My main tribe consists of all moms with kids ages 10 and under. I like to say I married into the group as they’re all college friends of my husband’s and they’ve known each other for 15+ years. I’ve known them all for 11 years and although we’re all different, we’re able to connect on such an amazing level as friends and moms. Most of their kids are older than mine, so I’ve been fortunate enough to ask for their expertise when it comes to parenting. Especially in the early days with a newborn! I’m also getting to know many of the wives of my husband’s co-workers. Our husbands all travel with a band for a living, so it’s amazing to connect with other moms who are also road wives. And finally, I have met so many amazing momtrepreneurs through Nashville Bride Guide and Nashville Baby Guide! 

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Don’t wish the stages away! And don’t say, “I can’t wait until he/she can _____.” Embrace every stage with your kids. You’ll look back and as much as that certain stage may have been annoying or hard, you’ll wish you could have it back just to see them little again. When everyone tells you it goes by so fast, IT GOES BY SO FAST. For real. Put down your phone, play with your kids, and make some awesome memories with them. I need reminding of this daily. 🙂 

How do you balance it all?  I don’t! Haha! I’m a constant work in progress and I don’t know that I’ll ever feel like I have it all figured out and have a “balanced” life. I constantly feel tugged in different directions all day every day. But there is beauty to it and I wouldn’t trade being able to spend time with my kids and work on my own schedule! 

If you had a theme song, what would it be? I’m a big fan of late 90s bands and I’ve recently introduced my daughter to No Doubt and Ace of Base. So let’s say “Spiderwebs” and “The Sign” – both songs get me amped!

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it:  Yes! I am the owner of NashvilleBrideGuide.com (@nashvillebrideguide on Instagram). It’s an online resource for couples getting married in the Nashville area. The main purpose is to connect couples with quality Nashville area wedding professionals. I also feature real Nashville weddings, engagement shoots, styled shoots, and vendor interviews.

I’ve recently started NashvilleBabyGuide.com (@nashvillebabyguide on Instagram). It’s structured much like Nashville Bride Guide, but helps connect local Nashville parents to resources and products for their kids. Plus, I love featuring family stories through newborn photography, birthday parties, baby showers, family photo sessions and more on the blog!

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Nikki Burdine

Age: 36

Kid(s) and Ages: 1 daughter, Andi, 3 months (but she was born 12 weeks premature)

Where do you live?  Nashville

Work life: Morning news anchor for WKRN in Nashville

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? I’m new to motherhood, so I am still figuring this whole thing out! My journey to motherhood has also been different – the first 2-and-a-half months, my daughter was in the NICU, so we didn’t have her home to be ‘normal’ parents. After 71 days, she came home, so the most rewarding part would be just being able to be her mother in our home, tuck her in, feed her and cuddle her!

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!)  Since I’m such a rookie mom I don’t have many tips, but I will say doing feedings every 3 hours has been challenging, so making as many bottles ahead of time really helps! We have a mini fridge upstairs next to the nursery, so I can go straight from pumping to bottle without going too far away.

What is the best part about where you live? Nashville is truly a wonderful place to raise a family. I’m a Tennessee girl, so being around our family and best friends is huge. Our neighborhood, my coworkers and even strangers have been incredible, reaching out and asking how they can help. It’s meant so much to us.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. Since Andi was so premature, we haven’t been able to take her out many places yet. We love taking her on walks in our neighborhood, though! Any place that’s not inside the NICU is a treat for us. I can’t wait to take her to brunch with the girls, though!

Favorite date night in your hometown. Nashville has so many great restaurants! My husband and I love trying different spots around town. I would say a perfect date night these days is an early dinner followed by a walk around town and a glass of wine al fresco.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without? 1. Hatch sleep machine/noisemaker 2. MamaRoo 3. Uppababy Vista stroller 4. Snoo bassinet 5. Halo sleep sack

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag?

  1. Honesty baby wipes
  2. Hand sanitizer
  3. Burt’s bees burp cloths
  4. Noodle & Bo diaper cream
  5. Milk Snob privacy cover for stroller

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? I haven’t had much of that lately, but I imagine I will take a workout class like the old days!

Who are your “mom idols”?  My mother.  She raised 3 girls, much of the time by herself. My dad is a Marine and was overseas a lot, so there were many months she did it all by herself. I have no idea how she did it. I have one and brushing my teeth before 4pm is a win.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? My mom tribe is growing by the day! One of my best friends, Lindsey, lives just a few blocks away and she has been my go-to for everything. And even though some of them aren’t moms, I would add our NICU nurses to this list. They have been amazing, even since coming home from the NICU. Some are moms, some aren’t, but they know how to care for babies like none other!

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Make time for yourself, it’s so easy to let the days go by and not leave the house. I am much happier when I make myself take a walk or even run an errand. Sunshine is your friend!

How do you balance it all? I don’t! But I am learning to take on less and be selfish with my time. Having a NICU baby can be isolating and you don’t get the same experiences as other moms, so being selfish with her and my time is something I’m learning to do.

If you had a theme song, what would it be? That changes depending on my mood and the day, haha! I can’t get enough of Kacey Musgraves, and I find there’s a song from her Golden Hour album to match just about every mood I have. Slow Burn is my jam.

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it: I’m a new, first-time mom and a morning news anchor in Nashville. My husband and I left Washington, DC and  moved home to Nashville to start a family 2 years ago and it was the best decision we’ve ever made! My Instagram is full of morning news shenanigans—I go to work at 3am so life can be bizarre. And my coworkers are crazy, in the best way.  I post a lot about being a new mom and of course and my adorable furbabies. I am a big animal lover and try to raise awareness for adoption.

I’m also a wanna-be lifestyle blogger sharing tips, tricks, finds and everything in between on my blog. I don’t know it all, but I share what I figure out along the way…with a lot of goofiness and REALNESS in between.  You can find Nikki on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Ashley Goldman

Age: 25

Kid(s) and Ages: 4 months old

Where do you live? Nashville TN

Tell us a little bit about yourself…

Work life: I own my own event planning company called Evergreen Events located right here in Nashville! We plan weddings, birthday parties and corporate events!

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? So many things! For me the reward comes in the form of small moments such as reading time before bed, snuggling my baby close to me, watching them learn new things everyday and seeing him develop into a little person.

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!): Utilize grocery pick up and delivery services to save time and not having to worry about getting your little one out!

What is the best part about where you live? There are SO many things to do for families in Nashville! From splash pads to museums, this area is so family friendly and we always can find fun things happening.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown: I have a 4 month old so we do not do a ton right now haha 😉

Favorite date night in your hometown: True Food Kitchen for dinner and Jeni’s ice cream for dessert:) We also love concerts in the park in the summer time and will hit up local food trucks! The farmers market and Five  Daughters donuts are our favorite Saturday day date spots!

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without? Snuggle Me Organic baby lounger, Bibs pacifiers, Honest diapers, Water Wipes, Ergo, Wild Bird Ring Sling and our EvenFlo stroller and car seat combo!

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag? Water wipes, honest diapers, Nose Frida, extra swaddle, ring sling and bibs pacifiers.

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? I love me some self care so anything that makes me feel pampered such as getting my nails + hair done or having a coffee date with a friend:) I also LOVE baby-free trips to Target + Costco.

Who are your “mom idols”?  My own mother!

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? Mom Facebook groups have been so helpful in finding a community of mom friends who are in similar stages of life.

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Give yourself GRACE upon GRACE! This is all so new for you and your baby. You are learning on the job. Have fun with it and find joy in all the little moments.

How do you balance it all? Control the controllable. For me I can control my morning and night. We stick to a strict schedule in the am + pm and keep that routine consistent. The middle of the day looks different everyday so we have learned to roll with it and embrace that everyday looks a little bit different for us as I own my own business and work from home. In the morning I start my day with meditation and a cup of coffee while the baby takes his first nap, this helps me be still for the craziness of the day. At night we go for a walk to wind down and have a set bedtime routine. We are not perfect and everyday brings its own challenge but by controlling the things we can control it has allowed me to experience balance in our home.

If you had a theme song, what would it be? Demi Lovato – Fight Song

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it: I am a Nashville mom who is just like you. My life isn’t perfect and I hope to never portray that! I try to keep it real on this motherhood journey and have talked about breastfeeding struggles, PP weight struggles and more. I hope my instagram can be a safe place where other moms come and say “me to.” There is so much comparison and negativity on social media and my heart is to be different and share the realness of life! You can find me on instagram at @ashleybgoldman.

We Want You To Meet…

Name: April Escobar

Age: 32

Kid(s) and Ages: Martin, 20 months

Where do you live? Nashville, TN

Work life: I am currently a stay at home YouTube Mama!  I have been blessed to stay home with my son and that has always been a dream of mine.  I have also found a passion for YouTube and sharing this wild journey with other parents.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? The biggest reward has been watching my son grow and learn.  Getting paid in his kisses and hugs is the BEST paycheck!

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!) Having a toddler who can sometimes be a picky eater, I would say cutting food into fun shapes is a major mom hack!  Sometimes it isn’t about what you serve but how you serve it.

What is the best part about where you live? They don’t call it Music City for nothing!  The access to amazing live music year round all over the city is amazing.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. Right now my son LOVES animals & we are often found at the Nashville Zoo.  They have an awesome playground that is great for kids of all ages and tons of animals.  It is mostly shaded so we even enjoy it in the summer.

Favorite date night in your hometown.  Pearl Diver in East Nashville for sure.  My husband and I love it!  It is a tiki bar with great vibes and drinks.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without?

lillebaby carrier

Video baby monitor

Dom sound machine

Magic bullet baby turbo steamer

Silicone bibs

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag?

Costco Diapers

Costco Wipes

Honest company spray hand sanitizer

Kids hydroflask

SNACKS

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do?  I love to workout and have been blessed to attend a gym with child care.

Who are your “mom idols”?  My mother in law, she is everything I strive to be as a mom.  She was and is always there for her kids (me included) and would drop anything for them.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? Majority of my Mom tribe I have met through social media.  None of my friends have kids and it has been great connecting and going through this journey even though it has been virtually.

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? The newborn stage is the easy time, its toddler life where things get hard.

How do you balance it all?  I am a planner but, always keep things flexible.  I like to make a guideline for the week every Sunday but, know that things always change.

If you had a theme song, what would it be? Let it go! Let it go!

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it: @boomitsaprile, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoFDI0u7SgVSDf0D9x70IbQ

I am primarily on Instagram and YouTube where I share all things motherhood, lifestyle, and Nashville.  I started my YouTube to connect with other Moms on this wild journey.  I share the good, the bad, and the messy.  Motherhood is wild and we are just trying to hang on at times.

We Want You To Meet…

Name : Diana Gillean

Age : 33

Kid(s) and Ages : June Belle – 10 Months

Where do you live? Spring Hill

Work life: I’m a stay at home mom, I am @tennesseepretty on instagram and I have a blog tennesseepretty.com. I also have my own party pack business launching this month. It’s a box including everything you need for a party – just add cake!

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? The bond that June Belle and I share is the most rewarding part of motherhood. She’s my best friend!

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? Okay so I’m a huge fan of ‘Taking Cara Babies’ sleep training. I wish I had heard of it sooner, I would have gotten alot more sleep!

What is the best part about where you live? We live on the outskirts of Spring Hill and I love how rural it is. It’s quiet, we can hear a donkey from the farm next door and my husband keeps bees here on our property so we get our own fresh local honey.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. Honestly, my favorite thing to do is take baby girl to Target! We’ve been doing Target runs since she was brand new and it’s still our favorite pastime. We also love baby time at the Spring Hill Library.

Favorite date night in your hometown. We love to go to Jonathans. We’re also a fan of brunch dates at the Spring Hill Bakery followed by coffee from the Fainting Goat.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without? 1. Dock-a-tot – I tell every new mom to get one 2. Fawn Design Backpack Diaper Bag 3. Bumbo Multi Seat 4. Little Unicorn Sleep Sacks 5. Cart/Highchair Cover

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag? 1. Sun Bum Spray Hand Sanitizer 2. Babyganics Wipes for restaurant tables – can also be used on toys that fall down 3. Skip Hop Changing Pad 4. Happy Baby Teething Wafers 5. Sofie the Giraffe And diapers of course! We love Hello Bello

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? I love to read and browse pinterest. I also love the occasional pedicure or reflexology. Of course, I almost always just end up looking at photos of June Belle.

Who are your “mom idols”? My mom is definitely my top mom idol – she’s the best I’ve ever known and she’s who I aspire to be. I also follow some great moms on instagram: @victoriamcfall, @malloryervin, @moderndaymoguls, @southernatheart are a few of my faves!

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? My mom tribe are my friends from college and now we all go to the same church. We’ve all had babies pretty close together. I couldn’t get through without them, our playdates and our group text thread.

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Don’t let your anxiety get the best of you. Between the scary articles online, the unwanted advice and your own fears, it’s hard to keep the worries in check. But do your best to not let it steal precious moments with baby. Prayer helps me alot.

How do you balance it all? I don’t. Every day is different around here and sometimes my house is clean and sometimes it’s a disaster. As long as June Belle is happy, fed and bathed, I count it a win. I also make alot of freezer meals so dinner isn’t always a hassle.

If you had a theme song, what would it be? I’m so cheesy but right now I think the Growing Pains theme song “As Long As We’ve Got Each Other” has to be my theme song.

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it:  Follow me on Instagram: @tennesseepretty and my blog tennesseepretty.com I’m all about my family, homemaking, beauty tips and anything pretty. I’m also launching Pretty Party Packs – a party in a box. Everyone wants to throw a pretty party and I want to make it easy for the busy moms out there. Follow me on instagram for updates!

We Want You To Meet…

Name: Megan Ward

Age: 29

Kid(s) and Ages: Brighton (girl) age 7 months

Where do you live? Brentwood, TN – Nashville suburb

Work life: I’m a stay at home mommy! I hold two bachelor degrees – one in advertising and one in global studies. Before becoming a mother, I was a nanny for 10 years while waiting to have a little of my own. Now I enjoy using my advertising skill set on Instagram as my personal blog about my motherhood journey.

What has been the biggest reward of motherhood? I think the challenge to do my best for her every single day. It’s a ton of work, but just seeing her smile and develop new skills is worth it a thousand times over.

What’s your best “mom-hack” you think other moms could benefit from? (We all one at least one time or sanity saving tip that everyone would want to know…spill it!) Mine is pretty basic, but I always keep two liners down on her changing pad at all times. That way if something goes totally poopy, I have a clean liner ready and waiting underneath!

What is the best part about where you live? Hands down, the southern culture. I was born and raised in Tennessee and I’m honestly addicted to southern hospitality. There is just nothing else quite like it.

Favorite thing to do with your kids in your hometown. I’m from a small town on the Alabama border, so there isn’t too much happening around there. However, we do have an apple orchard and we love to stop by there for fresh apple cider and whatever orchard goodies happen to be ripe at that time.

Favorite date night in your hometown. Currently, it’s leaving our daughter with my parents for the night and heading off to the nearest “big city” for a night away, just the two of us! It’s a great way for us to reconnect as a couple.

What are 5 things that you could not “mom” without?  Products would be the Baby Brezza Pro Advance! It’s a absolute lifesaver for those middle of the night feedings. Apps would be Instagram. There is an amazing community of moms I’ve found on there that I couldn’t live without. I think another must have would be to have plenty of loveys always on hand.

What are your 5 must-have items in your diaper bag? Loveys, poop bags, extra toys, Ryan and Rose Cutie Clips, and water bottle!

When you have time to yourself, what do you like to do? Take a nap! Or read.

Who are your “mom idols”?  My mother and grandmother, first of all. Also, pretty much all mothers and parents. We’re all out here working our hardest to raise these kiddos and I look up to all of them.

Who is in your mom tribe and how did you meet them? I have several mom tribes! One I met on Instagram. There are some incredible women who are so awesome to connect with. Also, my MOPS group. Women here in the Nashville area in the same boat as me.

What is one piece of advice for new moms that you wish someone told you before motherhood? Schedules don’t matter. Feed your babe when they are hungry, hold them when they want to be held, and let them sleep when they want to sleep. Your life and theirs will run so much smoother. The housework can wait… your baby is growing up every second. Enjoy it!

How do you balance it all? With lots of help! My family is a huge help to us, especially when our daughter was a newborn. My mother moved in with us for two months and it was a game changer!

If you had a theme song, what would it be? Just Keep Swimming?!

Tell us a little bit about your blog/IG account/online persona and what is your mission behind it:  @raisingbumblebees on Instagram. I share a ton of photos of my baby because I made her and I’m proud of her! I try to share my honest, real, raw, daily motherhood. I don’t have an Insta-worthy home or things, I’m just sharing my real life struggles and triumphs about motherhood in general. Everyone is welcome in my Insta-world!

If you’re an expectant or new parent in the Nashville area, Gearapalooza is an event you do NOT want to miss!  Join these fantastic Nashville moms + us on September 12, 5:30 pm – p:00 pm at the Gordon JCC !

Click here to see even more year-round BCB events in Nashville!  We’re always bringing you the BEST baby gear, products, services, networking + safety information across ALL of our local and nationwide events – Gearapaloozas, webinars, playdates + more!  Follow us on Instagram and Facebook and sign up for our email list to make sure you’re first to know about our latest content, giveaways, events + more!