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Top of Mind, 08.05

new modern mom top of mind




Written by:

Barbara Mighdoll

COOKING Sesame Chicken Thighs

WATCHING Only Murderers in the Building

MOVING Robin Arzon’s Postpartum Core Strength Program on Peloton

PLANNING August in Italy 

REFLECTING Our week at #TahoeBearDen enjoying Truckee summer

Disclaimer: This post was written in the beginning of August prior to my trip to Italy, so it’s a bit less “Top of Mind” lol than my future posts in this series will be. The perfectionist in me couldn’t get around to publishing it during the chaos of our trip. That said, it’s not too late to squeeze in a trip to enjoy the last bit of Tahoe summer in September while the temps are still hot, but cool off at night!

I haven’t spent nearly as much time as I’d like writing for New Modern Mom over the last year. The craziness of balancing a demanding career, an active toddler, pregnancy and emerging social life post COVID lockdown has made it hard for me to prioritize this platform I built two years ago. But I vowed to change that this maternity leave. Much like my mat leave with Caden, I’ve found a renewed energy to curate the best products, brands and advice from me, a real modern working mom, to make your lives easier.

I decided to start a new series on the blog, ‘Top of Mind,’ as an approachable way for me to share the latest things going on in my life. I’m not going to commit right now to the frequency of this series – being two months postpartum, I’m trying not to overwhelm myself with intimidating goals – but I’m hoping it becomes a staple, consistent piece on the blog.

The theme of this ‘Top of Mind’ in the quote above relates directly to how I’ve been feeling the last two months since Willow’s arrival. This postpartum I feel drastically different than I did after Caden. I’m less anxious, happier, and find myself living in the moment so much more. Because of this positive spirit, we’ve been venturing out and making memories, memories I wish we had built when Caden was this little, but my birth recovery, health, and our COVID precautions unfortunately prevented us from living life this way.

It feels like summer

For those of you new here, we bought #TahoeBearDen in early Fall of 2020 (book it here). Going anywhere with a newborn is overwhelming (here are some tips), and staying for multiple days is very intimidating, but we decided to roadtrip to Lake Tahoe when Willow was 6 weeks old for a ten day family vacation. I’ve always said Lake Tahoe summers are my favorite time of year there, but this trip reminded me truly how much I love it and how beautiful it can be. 

Here’s my curated list of summer must-dos in Truckee & North Lake Tahoe, a signature section of this new series ‘All the things’ noting the products, brands or hacks I currently cannot live without, and a repeat section ‘Food for thought’ where I’ll be sharing personal observations, current events, or topics of conversations I've had with friends.

What to do in Tahoe Donner, Truckee & North Lake Tahoe

  • Trout Rec Center Pool in Tahoe Donner
  • Tahoe Donner Beach Club Marina
  • King’s Beach – grab sandwiches from Tahoe Central Market
  • Sugar Pine Beach
  • Glacier Way Trail
  • Brockway Summit Tahoe Rim Trail
  • Raft the Truckee River – my FAVORITE summer activity. Dog and children friendly, but no babies under age 2 so sadly we couldn’t go this year 🙁
  • Coffee and breakfast from Coffeebar in downtown Truckee
  • Shop at Bespoke, Jake + Emmy, CA89Home
  • Truckee Thursdays – food trucks, local vendors, live music – super fun!
  • Alibi Ale Works Truckee Public House – covered outdoor space, child and dog friendly. Get the mustache pretzel.
  • Messy backyard play! Butcher paper, washable paint, brushes.


  • UppaBaby Minu V2 – The travel stroller you’ve been searching for!! This stroller is lightweight, folds up small (can fit in the overhead bin), easily connects the Mesa infant car seat with added adapters, or you can use it for your toddler as a much more comfortable alternative to the GB Pockit+.
  • Diaper Caddy – This thing can hold everything necessary for a week away for Willow including changing station necessities like diapers, and is easy to move room to room.
  • SnuggleMe Feeding Pillow – I literally bring this everywhere with us so I can nurse hands-free.
  • Hatch Rest Sound Machine – We started using the toddler clock feature at home, and its helped keep Caden on schedule no matter where we are.
  • Swim vest – This takes the stress out of Caden being in the hot tub and pool. Obviously still must stay within an arm's reach, but this floatie gives me peace of mind.
  • Reusable swim diaper – Much better option than disposable swim diapers.
  • Stroller fan – This keeps Willow cool and made naps more comfortable for her.
  • Beach umbrella – 100% necessary under the hot sun
  • Yeti Backflip 24 – I love this cooler. The zipper is leak proof so no spilling in the car when ice begins to melt or while bending over to pick up a toddler. You can wear it like a backpack making it easier to tread through the sand. And it fits a surprising amount of stuff.

Food for thought

Where did all the workers go? You can't go anywhere in Truckee without seeing “help wanted” signs. We went out to eat at Como on Saturday night, had a 45 minute wait for 4 people, yet half the tables outside were empty and zero were seated indoors. The restaurant blamed staffing shortages. RiteAide’s shelves were half empty and a mess, and is considering closing Saturdays and Sundays because they can’t staff the store. The “great resignation” is so blatantly apparent in the retail and service industries. It's hard to imagine how these small businesses will be able to survive. I found this episode of Planet Money’s The Indicator fascinating to explain how critical just a single table in a restaurant is for profitability. Listen now.

My theory: COVID + creator economy + desire for flexibility + easy and affordable access to skill development online has opened up the eyes and opportunities for workers to be their own boss, follow their passion and make a living doing it. So the question is… how will retail and restaurants continue to operate and attract workers when there are seemingly better alternatives for work?

More to come

Thank you for following along on my motherhood journey the past two years since launching New Modern Mom. Like I said, I haven’t gotten to spend nearly enough time in this space I’ve created as my full time job and life in general has taken most of my attention, but I am hoping to change that moving forward. Just like New Modern Mom was cultivated while on maternity leave for Caden, I’m spending a lot of time this maternity leave with Willow imagining and building the next evolution of what I’d like this blog to be about. A fresh look, more helpful content and new series are in the works. Your support means the world to me. Stay tuned for more to come.

XX have a great week,


New Modern Mom Top of Mind


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