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The McAllister Family ∙ "Enjoy the moment and be present, the days are long but the years are short."

BirdRock Baby- Brooke McAllister

The McAllister Family

Heuvelton, NY

What is your favorite family tradition?

Olivia is about to turn one in July, so our family traditions are just beginning. However, holiday traditions are important to both James and myself so we are excited to continue creating new ones with our little family. Every year we love going to a local Christmas Tree farm (the weekend following Thanksgiving!) and walking out to cut our own tree.

I have gone to this special tree farm since I was young with my own family, it is so special. We both love the feeling of cheer and family excitement that comes with the holiday season. This past Christmas was extra special for a few reasons like being able to celebrate Olivia's first Christmas on top of the first year in our new house.

Tell us about your favorite family story.

The past year we have enjoyed watching Olivia grow, but at the same time we work hard to navigate life as a new family of three. Since James works long hours, any time we get with all 3 of us is so appreciated. One of my favorite family stories also goes back to last Christmas.

We had just come downstairs, breakfast was cooking and James said he and Olivia had a special surprise (close my eyes). As I sat in my Christmas jammies waiting, he set Olivia in my lap and told me to open my eyes. Olivia was changed out of her holiday jammies and wearing a onesie that said "Mommy will you marry my Daddy?", as James knelt behind her.

An engagement was a real surprise on Christmas morning, but so perfect. I have always loved the holidays, to be in that moment with just our little family will be something I cherish forever.

What is your family's motto?

Enjoy the moment and be present, the days are long but the years are short.

Share Your Parenting Wisdom

BirdRock Baby- Brooke McAllister

What's your number one tip for new parents?

As a new mom myself, I try so hard not to give any unsolicited advice with new parents because I remember how overwhelming every opinion or piece of advice could be! My number one tip is to listen to your gut- whether it's advocating for your wants&needs at the hospital/during birth, saying no to visitors after baby is born, when to ask for help or knowing what your baby needs. You were meant to be that baby's parents, help each other and learn from the baby as you go.

What has been the most surprising thing you've learned as a parent?

The amazing community that is "motherhood". People with children want to help you, are happy to give tips/advice and truly believe in you because they have been there also. Raising babies is truly wonderful, but also SO HARD!

I have been so happy to find out that "the village" it takes to raise a child, is real and you CAN depend on it. This doesn't just mean your family- it's the support groups online, women you knew in high school who also have kids, friends of friends, wives of friends, etc. Trust your instincts but also trust when to ask the questions!

Tell us about your funniest parenting story (we all have them!)

I imagine our stories will only get more funny as Olivia continues to grow, but for her first year- we had a great laugh a couple months in when James took her upstairs to change after an extreme blowout and when he came down and I looked at her, I noticed something was weird... it took a second for me to figure out Dad had put her pants on and then buttoned her onesie over the pants. He couldn't figure out why I was laughing so hard!