When I first got pregnant, I had this grand idea that I would be the healthiest I've ever been because I wanted create the best home for my baby to grow. I failed pretty hard when cravings kicked in and I didn't feel I had the energy to chop fresh veggies and make a salad. My lesson learned was I needed to start before I got pregnant so the habit would already be there. I mean we eat pretty healthy *most* of the time, but we have a good greasy pizza at least every other week. (It's all in moderation, right?) Anyway, why am I talking about all this healthy eating? Because I our Ma of the week is a health coach! 

Let me introduce you to Celeste. Mom, wife, health-coach, friend, encourager, twin, crazy-awesome woman in general. We've known about each other for years, having had a bunch of mutual friends, but it wasn't until she was pregnant and we had the same doula did we actually spend a little time together. I hope to  get to know her better but for now she is one of my favorite people to follow on social media because she posts so many great tips on health and wholeness (@wholly_mama). Not to mention she powered through pregnancy with the habit of eating healthy and really took care of her body pre and post pregnancy. She has this brilliant way of encouraging you towards health and wholeness without making you feel shamed for shoving a taco in your face whilst reading said Wholly Mama posts. Needless to say, I was really excited when she emailed me with an interest to be part of this project, and I mean isn't banner so stinkin' cute?

Tell me a little about your lifestyle.

I am a first time mama of a precious and perfect baby boy, Banner. He was born November 11, 2014 in the most glorious timing of Jesus! I am in love with my husband, Brandon, who works from home as a freelance graphic artist--HE IS AMAZING. I'm starting a health coaching practice this year to help women who want to become pregnant, pregnant women, and young families rock at fully LIVING with energy and vibrancy. I feel so honored to be a mom. I feel like part of my heart has settled into my calling because of having Banner. My desire is to show others that this journey of motherhood can be so enjoyable and life-giving, even when we are pouring ourselves out for our families.
Banner is THE CUTEST baby boy I've ever known! Yes, I am biased, but I can't help but smoosh his little cheeks and tell him how amazing he is every chance I get.

I often struggle to reconcile dreams that I had pre-motherhood with post-motherhood. What are you wrestling to find time for?:

I am wrestling to find time to actually START my health coaching business! I'm still in school until the end of April, and my brain is constantly in planning mode! I have to surrender the normal things about having a clean house, read emails, painted toenails ;), weekly kid-free date nights, and drinking alcohol and caffeine whenever I want. I also can't wait to travel on a whim! I like to think of myself as a low maintenance traveler who can leave on a whim, but having baby throws that out the window! (Does it have to though? :)

We know there's few things more vulnerable than birthing a baby (whatever way you did) or the embarrassing moment you unexpectedly let-down and were covered in your own breastmilk. All in the name and beauty of raising a child. Share a funny or honest or sobering moment when something happened that put you way outside your comfort zone.

Where to start?? 3 weeks after having Banner, Brandon and I went to his office Christmas party. It was our first time away from Banner and we were nervous! I was nervous :)The previous year, there was wine, we made delicious food, and essentially had a date night out with a bunch of other couples. So we show up to the party (I thought I'd gotten over my postpartum bursts of emotion...so cute of me to think that!), I meet a ton of new people (which is hard for me anyway because I'm an introvert), someone hands me a glass of some sort of sparkling grapefruit juice and says there's no wine this year, and they lead us to our tables where they have split up all the spouses in hopes of getting everyone to socialize more. EXCUSE ME I JUST HAD A BABY AND I NEED MY HUSBAND AND DID I MENTION SOME WINE?

I burst into tears. In front of all the new people. In front of the sparkling grapefruit juice station where there was no wine to be found. I had to excuse myself to the bathroom for quite awhile. So now they all think I have diarrhea AND I'm an emotional basket case. COOL! Haha.

In all honesty, those first weeks were the most raw and authentic I had ever been around people. 2 other moms came out and helped me process a bit before we went back into the party. It was very humbling, but I just owned my new mommyhood and enjoyed the rest of the dinner. They allowed Brandon to sit next to me. And we shared an entire bottle of wine once we got home :)

Expectation vs. Reality: Share a time when these were awfully unbalanced.

Brandon works from home, so when he told me up front "I will do whatever you need!" I expected him to be available to watch Banner for an hour while I napped. (And every interruption would start the hour over.) He actually meant "I can change his diaper and hold him for 10 minutes if you'd like." We worked through that one pretty quick after a huge emotional, fatigued, hangry outburst from yours truly.

What do you hope your children know about you? and/or What do you hope to impart to your children?

FULL LIFE. I want them to know me as a vibrant mama who is healthy and whole--even when I mess up or have to work through fatigue or failure. I want them to learn grace and unconditional love from an amazing Heavenly Father who is teaching their parents how to have grace and unconditional love as well. I want them to know ultimate freedom unto love.

What have you done in the past week that you are proud of?

I have exercised, eaten healthy, and also had several margaritas. I guess I'm proud of being balanced!

If she hasn't already won your heart, her favorite quote was "Margaritas are really yummy." And when asked what other mom inspires here? Her sister, who has "3 beautiful kids. She is raising them with grace and strength." To follow her WhollyMama posts and more see the links below!

Ma Dreams is a project I started this year (2015) after having a creative craving that I felt like I couldn't quench. As a recent first-time mom I've found it extremely hard to find time for the things I love in addition to my sweet babe. I guessed that most moms feel the same. To brings us together and remind Ma's of their dreams too I started this series. Read more here: Ma Dreams.