If you may not know Joy Woolbright Sotto well, we bet you've seen one of her kids. Where? At aunt's Ciara Sotto's Instagram account especially before Ciara had her own son Crixus. Joy is married to Quezon City councilor Gian Sotto, the third son of Senator Tito Sotto and former actress Helen Gamboa, and the couple just recently welcomed their fifth child (yes, fifth!).
Joy and Gian--they met at the University of Asia and The Pacific when they were in college and married in 2007--are parents to Hugo, 11, Edrico, 8, Sandro, 5, Rossano, 3, and baby girl Amari, two months old. With five kids, it's no surprise that Joy is a fan of hand-me-down clothes and toy, but the former fashion model admits she got a little excited shoppping for her new unica hija.
"I must admit though that I'm one of those sentimental moms. I still want and I still let [Amari] use a few of her kuya's onesies, swaddles, towels, and blankets... Makes it more meaningful," Joy wrote as caption on an Instagram photo.
Smartparenting.com.ph bumped into Joy at the opening of the newest Baby Company store at the second level of SM Megamall Building A second level and asked the veteran mom what baby stuff had really helped her when her kids were newborns up to a year old. Here are the mom-of-five’s first-year essentials.
1. Muslin/lampin Joy says her daughter Amari use lampins all the time. As newborns, the mom-of-five shared that her kids used it as burp cloths and swaddles.
2. Mustela products She particularly like the scent of Mustela products. Other than that, Joy says that after using Mustela bath products, she doesn't have to put lotion on her kids skin to keep it soft and smooth.
3. Disposable diapers It's so convenient, Joy says. When you have five kids, we bet having a quick nappy change is a big help. She advises moms to find a brand that's hiyang to their kids and stick with it.
4. Baby carrier "Baby wearing wasn't uso with my first and my second [child], but I used it with my third, fourth, and with my baby now," Joy says. She's particularly a fan of the Saya Baby Carrier.
5. Boppy pillow Joy says, "A boppy pillow is a must for breastfeeding moms." She recalled a trip to the States with her third child, then only 9 months old, and the pillow really helped her nurse on demand and in peace during the flight.
The modern mom admitted that she’s not a fan of letting her kids use gadgets. In fact, her kids weren't allowed to use them even on weekends until she finally gave in to her eldest Hugo's request--but not without setting the rules. She says there are some weekends when she doesn’t allow them to use gadgets. When she gives in, it's often when they earned it.
She shares, "Sometimes I feel that when they use gadgets, their attitude changes. Sometimes, they get frustrated easily, they get mad right away, and then, they fight! I always have to remind them and ask them, 'What's more important, brothers or Xbox or iPad?'"
On how she keeps sane and looking young after having five kids, Joy says she just enjoys the time with her kids. "If you don't pick you battles, you get stressed out right away, you get drained and you get in bad mood. I think you should just enjoy the age that your kids are in and just enjoy the time that you have with them. Remember that they're kids," she says.