5 Qs with Monica

Bump Envy

Name: Monica Ashby
Neighborhood: Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Occupation: Owner/Maker of Ashby Candles; stay at home Mama; forever Saturday bartender at Berry Park.
Baby’s Sex: Oh BOY

*We’ve partnered with Bravado Designs to show off some Bump Envy style. Share yours with #bumpenvy.

How would you describe your pregnant style?
Low maintenance, comfortable, easy.

Have you had any challenges learning to dress your body during this pregnancy?
Honestly, not really. I dress in super fluid, roomy linen and cotton dresses, many with no waist or empire waist, so throughout both pregnancies I haven’t had to buy any actual maternity clothes, with the exception of some maternity AND nursing-friendly camis. I did get addicted to those American Apparel high waisted yoga pants during my last pregnancy 5 years ago, and I have been wearing them since. I have at least 8 pairs. I use them as tights, pajamas, pants (when paired with something that covers my backside like my long army jacket or a poncho) really, I live in them! My husband calls them my “uniform”. They are like a constant gentle hug. Normally I don’t like to feel my clothes on me, but I love these. No muffin top either! Woo Hoo!

Monica Ashby of Ashby Candles

So far, what has surprised you most during your pregnancy?
I’m surprised by how much more I can feel my body this pregnancy. My first pregnancy I was 35 and it was truly a piece of cake. A few leg cramps, perhaps a bit bitchy that first trimester, but I almost felt compelled to fake complain so I had something to talk about. I worked 5-6 days a week bartending and managing up till I was 8 and a half months pregnant, with absolutely no problems. THIS pregnancy, I was a raging bitch the first trimester, and sooooo tired. I started cramping almost immediately and it still comes and goes almost daily. I get up to pee about 5 times a night, I have wild heartburn…I mean, nothing too horrible, just by comparison I’m feeling my age. I think it could have a lot to do with having to parent a 5-year-old this time around and running all over town with him daily. There’s not a lot of resting going on.

What are you most looking forward to sharing with your baby?
Oh man…I can’t wait to look him in the eyes and kiss his sweet little lips. The happiest moment I can imagine is Alerick (my son) getting to finally hold his baby brother. He spends so much time throughout the day talking to him and giving him kisses. He always puts a blanket on my belly when i’m sitting on the couch to make the baby cozy. He’s VERY ready to be a brother. Every night for over a year he wished to the stars for a baby brother or sister, so he is pretty stoked.

Beautiful pregnant mama #bumpenvy

What’s your top 5 registry essentials?
A friend gave me the best words of wisdom during my last pregnancy. I was spinning on all the gear and brands and she said “listen, all you REALLY need when the baby gets here is a car seat and boobs”. It’s an exaggeration of course, but there’s a lot of truth to it. I suppose if I had to make a registry from scratch today I’d ask for:
1. The Heidi (diaper) Bag. I had mine shipped from Israel 5 years ago, not sure if local places carry them yet but it’s an awesome stylish diaper bag with snap off convertible straps that works as a purse or a backpack. I loved front carrying baby while back carrying my diaper bag/purse. Hands free! (shop similar here)
2. Bravado Designs Body Silk Seamless Nursing Cami. I started using this during pregnancy since it’s nice and stretchy and covers the bump, but know I’ll be continuing my daily use once baby arrives and I’m nursing.
3. Ergobaby organic carrier AND a woven wrap. I recommend going to Wild Was Mama, or your local baby gear store if you’re not Brooklyn based, and trying every carrier on. The wraps too. The wraps can be a little intimidating at first but once you figure it out it’s so easy, and you can put baby in there from day one. I have the Girasol woven wrap and I love it.
4. Boppy nursing pillow. I would have died of shoulder pain without this. It’s so lovely for breastfeeding, for holding baby on your lap, for sticking baby in the center of (while still immobile, of course)…it got a whole lot of use. Get a couple covers so you can rotate them out and not have to do laundry all the time.
5. Sleep sheep. The travel sized one so you can stick it in the stroller, the car seat, the crib…The white noise really helped Alerick sleep wherever we were. Bars, restaurants, etc.

Bravado Silk Seamless Nursing Cami

Monica is wearing: 
No 6 clogs
H&M maternity jeans. These are worn and torn! I got these from a friend. Apparently Lanny gave them to Katherine who gave them to Julie who gave them to me. Sisterhood of the Maternity Pants?
Bravado Designs Body Silk Seamless Nursing Cami. I put this on right before the shoot and I haven’t taken it off since! I seriously love this article of clothing. Paired with my high waisted leggings and an oversized button down shirt I’ve got a new uniform. It’s great to sleep in too.
Free People Poncho. I bought this for my wedding in Yosemite 3 years ago and It’s one of my favorite pieces. It’s the softest cotton with big chunky colorful yarn embroidered detail. It’s mood changing in the best way!

Photography by Belle Augusta for Well Rounded NY.

SHOP MONICA’S STYLE

Bravado Seamless Silk Nursing CamiBravado Designs Body Silk Seamless Nursing Cami

No. 6 Shearling ClogsNo. 6 Clogs

H&M Mama JeansH&M maternity jeans.

Free People PonchoFree People Poncho

Jessica Pallay

Jessica Pallay

Jessica Pallay is Co-Founder and Editor of Well Rounded NY. She is a Brooklyn mama to Libby and Elsie, and writes about all things pregnancy and new motherhood.

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