share your stories and join in on the discussion on Facebook!

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Mom of the Month - Larissa Ragazzo

Congratulations to our Mom of the Month, Larissa Ragazzo! She has two handsome boys and is a hard working mother, who is learning to make time for herself.

Such a great read, thanks for sharing your life with us, Larissa!

Images shared from Larissa Ragazzo

1. Describe your children in 3-5 words. How did you choose their names?
Both boys have family names. My oldest, Robert Paul II, is named after my FIL while my youngest, Kevin Lawrence, is named after my father and grandfather.  Robby is sweet, silly, quiet, and loves to learn new things.  Kevin is my wild-man, but he is also super sweet and loving.

2. How old are your children? How did you tell people you were expecting a baby?
Robby is 7, we couldn’t wait to tell family and told them right away!!  Kevin is 4, we called family, then posted a picture of Robby holding a big brother book to Facebook.

3. How would you describe your pregnancies? How was delivery, birth and labor for you?
My pregnancy with Robby was a roller-coaster.  At the very beginning they couldn’t hear a “strong enough heartbeat” for his calculated age, I was told that I might have a miscarriage and had to wait a week to go back for another ultrasound - turns out I wasn’t as far along as they thought!  Then at around 3 months my bloodwork came back indicating a potential for CF so I had to go get a more specialized ultrasound.  The ultrasound cleared him of CF, but showed a potentially horrific genetic disease so I made the decision to get an amnio (chances of said disease were less than 1% but I couldn’t live with the uncertainty for 6 more months).  Towards the end of my pregnancy, my blood pressure became high and a few days before my due date I was sent to the hospital for monitoring which led to an induction that took FOREVER.  There were a lot of babies being born that week and they kept having to wait to give me my next dose of meds because they didn’t have enough nurses on duty…  When I finally went into labor, I had been at the hospital for 3 days.  The actual labor took about 12 hours - I never realized how close I was to an emergency c-section until well after the fact.  

My pregnancy with Kevin was much less eventful ;)  His labor was also much faster - I went to the hospital in the middle of the night because my water broke.  Several hours later when contractions had still not started, I was induced with him as well.  Things were pretty uneventful until a nurse came to catheter me and saw Kevin’s head!!  15 minutes later he was here!!

4. Describe yourself as a mom in 3-5 words.
supportive, loving, frazzled

5. What type of mom do you hope your children think you were someday when they're old enough to tell you?

I hope my children realize that I was always there for them, no matter what.  That I supported them when they needed the support and pushed them to be the best that they could be.  

6. What things have you done as a mom that you're most proud of?
Instilling a love of reading and a desire to be active are the 2 things I am most proud of.  That my boys are pretty awesome is a nice accomplishment too ;)

7. What have been the most difficult parts to being a mom?
Taking time for myself has always been a challenge for me.  So much of my life is devoted to my boys (which I love) but I sometimes sit back and realize that I have not spent time nurturing my friendships or doing things for myself.  Now that they are older I am beginning to take more time for myself and my husband.

8. What is your favorite baby/child product(s) that makes your mom job easier?
It’s not really a baby/child product, but my whiteboard calendar on the fridge makes organizing our life so much easier.  Everything is written on the calendar - Related Arts classes for the day, days that my son is buying hot lunch, any commitments outside my normal work day, sports practices, and fun family activities are all put up so we can be prepared for the week ahead.

9. What advice about being a mom would you give to a brand new mother?

Take the time to snuggle your babies - some of my favorite memories are of those first few years just snuggling on the couch.  Also, no matter what, you will make choices that you second-guess - do what your gut tells you and move on.

10. What is a typical day like for you?
Get up around 4:15/4:30 go to the gym for about ½ hour.  Home to shower and get ready for work,  then downstairs to make lunches and breakfast.  Out the door by 6:55 (with lots of “I love yous” as I walk out the door) for my 10 minute commute to work.  I work at the local middle school as the Title 1 Coordinator which means that I spend a couple of hours working with small reading intervention groups and the rest of the day looking at data, or in meetings.  I leave work around 3:30 (even though the day ends at 2:30) to go pick both boys up at daycare/after school care (which just happens to be the same place!).  If we don’t have any afterschool commitments, we are home by 4:00 for homework and some time to chill before I start to make dinner/unload the dishwasher.  Dinner is usually around 6 then the boys can play while I catch up with my husband (he gets home anytime from 6-7).  Bedtime is 8:00.  Then I usually collapse and leave the kitchen clean up to my husband :)  

11. What 5 things would you like to do with your kids someday, if anything were possible and money no object?
Visit all the National Parks (they’ve already been to Acadia and we are going to the Smoky Mountains this summer)
Full week at Disney staying on property
Ski trip to Colorado
Drive across country
Travel to Europe

12. What are 5 things you LOVE about being a mom?
watching them turn into “real” people has been amazing
being the person they turn to when they are upset and knowing how to calm them
watching the boys play together and get along
did I mention hugs?

13. Tell us a time where you felt like you failed at parenting... but then realized you truly had not failed, things worked out fine.
Any time I have lost my temper with my boys I have felt like a failure.  I told myself that I wouldn’t scream at or spank my children, but in the heat of the moment, when I am truly overwhelmed, I have screamed and I have spanked.  I am not proud of it.  Every time it happens, I feel horrible.  However, without fail, every single time, my boys still love me and I them.

14. What makes you a strong mom?
Knowing that I am doing everything I can for the boys.  And being able to recognize the things that I cannot do.  

15. Anything else you want to add?

I am not an extraordinary mom.  I am just someone who loves her boys more than anything and will do whatever it takes to help them become well-rounded adults.  I see so many other moms who seem to have it better figured out than I do.  I do what works for my family and it probably isn’t what works for other families.  At the end of the day, my boys are happy and healthy, so I must be doing something right!

1 comment:

  1. Another frazzled mom right here!

    It's amazing how moms from all over the world seem so alike when it comes to loving and taking care of their little ones. Being a mom takes so much work, but it is also extremely rewarding. I can say that the best decision I have ever made for myself and for my whole family is deciding to be a stay-at-home mom!