mama chats

meet marissa smith
fist time mama, .....

im happiest when...

im with my family

when i need space...

when my stresses become consuming, I find plugging into some music and a serious look around as a sort of reality check is just the “space” and freedom I need to feel at ease and brought back to the present and all its glory, but now seriously looking and breathing in my girl is a quicker and sure-all fix.

favorite place...

my bedroom when all the  laundry is done and Santa Cruz (wish we could get there more.) 

I believe in the power of...

kindness, of saying hello with words, a smile or just a head nod, of being as present as one can be, and to be better at the next one if you messed up this last time.  

on becoming a mama

q: how many children do you have & what age?       

a: 1 baby girl, she is 16 weeks!

q: your baby girl has such a unique name! can you share your inspo?                 

a: Rez, her daddy always had it in mind for when he would have a little girl, he shared it with me early on in our relationship - from that moment, it was always going to be her name. It is of Hungarian origin, meaning “girl of copper-colored hair”, which seemed highly unlikely, but here she is with a slight hue of copper. 

q: what was it like when you found out you were pregnant, and how has this experience been for you?                                                                                

a:  i was nervous but I really trusted my husband and myself to bring life into this world, to raise a good human. Pregnancy was an incredible journey, I realized I am capable of so much more than I ever knew. Any ordinary tasks while pregnant made me feel like a superhuman - I’ve developed a whole new respect for the female anatomy and humans in general. 

q: what does being a mama mean to you and how has it changed you?                

a: responsibility doesn't seem to do it enough justice, but the fact that everything I do to, for and with Rez will have weight in her life is the greatest responsibility I could ever imagine.  It’s a big role, and I just hope I can set a tone that will help guide her as she grows, and once I’m not a part of her everyday, once she’s completely her own. I feel motherhood has allowed for me to be more present and aware of myself and the world around me. I want to be the best, most honest version of myself for her, for my family, and for anyone, we as a whole may touch. 

q: now that you've experienced childbirth first hand with Rez, any advice for those expecting?                                                                                                         

a: Simple, an epidural. THANK YOU to modern medicine, I appreciate you. Though I totally get the desire to go completely natural, I still felt 100% connected to our childbirth journey while at a peaceful ease physically. I felt I could really be present mentally with each push because the pain was under control. Whatever you choose, once your baby arrives, It's the greatest high of your life and any pain you endured was only temporary.  Also, try to take a poop before. That helped.

q: what are some challenges you have faced while navigating mama-hood thus far?                                                                                                                     

a: Immediately (like days after meeting Rez) multiple people ask “when are you going back to work”, and I think the pressure of that question made me feel guilty for not wanting to go back anytime soon and made me question if I still had the chops to be good at what I was before, am I even a sommelier if I’m not working as one,  will i still have respect when I return to my restaurant ? Initially,I felt I couldn't be both, but now as I bring work and wine back into my life, I remember that these are important parts of me, parts of me that I like, and that now it’s just a matter of navigating and seeking balance as it has always been. The quest for that is the journey, and I’m working on embracing that notion with grace. I’ve got to show Rez that her mom is a badass, but first I have to believe it for myself. 

q: special moments you cherish with your babes.                                                

a: Our morning hello as she stretches her arms as she is taken out of her swaddle is pretty cute. As we’re all still in bed she has her first feed, she’s got her sleepy eyes looking at me and I just love the stillness of the moment. 

q: they say it takes a village! can you tell us about your’s? where did you find support? any helpful resources you want to pass on to the next mama?                  

a: It truly does! We are so lucky to be surrounded by family in the same town. Rez has her grandmas, papas, aunties and uncles on both sides that want nothing more than to be of help and love on her. Beyond them, we have friends turned aunties/uncles for additional support. We feel all of their love in our home even when they aren't here. Rez has so many people to seek out cuddles, slumber parties and wisdom from. 

Take them up on their help, it’s not only good for you, but it brings joy to them and then we’re all happy. Also, if your mom wants to clean, maybe switch it up sometimes and say “mom you cuddle with the baby and I’ll do the dishes”. 

q: favorite activities to do with your family in the wild’?                                       

a: laying outside, looking up at the sky, talking to her about what is passing us by. Did I just rhyme? Singing and rhyming up nonsense makes her smile, anything to make her smile. 

q: help a mama out! insider mama secrets you care to share? we’re always learning and love to pass on what works for one mama/family to another!       

a: I think babies really sense the vibe of the room. We’ve got to keep our cool and nix the heat of frustration and especially anger when she’s around.  Staying connected to my spouse, loving on him = is loving on me = is loving on her. Throughout the day she is so patient with us, I feel her kindness even though she can’t speak, she may be a  sweetheart by nature  but also, maybe the good vibes are working. 

Also,  We try to do every bath together, a fun, intimate routine that we can all look forward to. 

Also, Also, coconut oil for the cradle cap and staying up on hydrating her skin! 

on sustainability 

q: how do you feel about sustainability?                                                             

a: It is difficult in a quick world to achieve, but having a child allows me to broaden the scope of  reality, to think when Rez is older and realize small changes now will have great effects for her future. 

q: how important are clean (natural, organic, non-toxic) products to you? has this changed since having a little of your own?                                                         

a: If I’m considering natural products for her laundry detergent and dish soap, this should carry into the garments she  wears. I never really thought this way before having her as it’s not the more accessible option. Our daughter is our responsibility to the world, repping clean products is a small, important part of that duty. 


Thank you for sharing your mama truths with us. We hope this will inspire other mamas & parents to know that you're not alone. After all, it can get a little wild and we want you to know- we hear you. we see you. we want to support you. from one mama to all!  #mamachats 


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