J.P. and Ashley Hebert Rosenbaum: How We’re Tackling Breastfeeding As a Team

10/17/2014 at 01:00 PM ET

J.P. and Ashley Hebert Rosenbaum‘s love story just keeps getting sweeter.

After paying tribute to their whirlwind romance with a travel-themed baby shower in July, the parents-to-be turned to planning a nursery for their baby boy — and it was obvious which direction they were heading.

“Ashley and J.P. have many memories of traveling together, so the nursery features a subtle travel theme,” designer Vanessa Antonelli, who worked with the couple on the room, tells PEOPLE exclusively.

Using a paneled wall as the focal point, the couple created a sophisticated sleep space featuring wall clocks representing the places they’ve visited together, chic accessories that play into the theme, including sailboats and maps, and a neutral color palette that can easily grow with their child.

“Ashley knew exactly what she wanted and worked with me to choose the pieces that went into the room,” says Antonelli. “But even more surprising was that she is a little contractor! Ashley actually put up most of that Stikwood wall all by herself.”

And just as she took to carpentry, Hebert Rosenbaum is already excelling at motherhood since the Sept. 30 arrival of son Fordham Rhys.

“Ashley has taken to motherhood like she has been doing it all her life. It always makes me smile to see how she handles Ford,” Rosenbaum says.

Christina Mendoza of Tutti Bambini

In an exclusive interview, the proud new parents opened up to PEOPLE about everything from the moment they met Ford to overcoming the initial challenges of breastfeeding and their favorite room in their home: the nursery.

PEOPLE: Congratulations on your baby boy! What have the first few weeks been like as new parents?

Ashley: The first two weeks have been great. (Knock on wood.) Fordham has been a sweet and easy baby so far, but we know things can change!

Parenthood has brought J.P. and I closer together and has allowed us to realize what is important to us. Our lives revolve around caring for this sweet little boy and making sure we provide him with all the things he needs to be fulfilled! We are loving every moment of it!

Courtesy J.P. Rosenbaum

PEOPLE: Ashley, you’ve mentioned it was a tough recovery. How have you been doing? What’s been the hardest part?

Ashley: I ended up having a c-section so my recovery has lasted a bit longer than what we expected. J.P. really had to take care of both me and the baby for the first few days. He really stepped up his dad and husband game!

At the hospital, he was up for every feeding, brought me anything I needed, and changed every diaper!! I couldn’t have done it without him. I am so proud to call him my husband and baby daddy!

Christina Mendoza of Tutti Bambini

PEOPLE: What was it like seeing Fordham for the first time?

Ashley: Seeing Ford for the first time was a moment we both will never forget. To me, he was the most gorgeous baby I had ever seen. After months of dreaming of the moment I would first get to hold him, it was finally here. It felt surreal.

I was also mesmerized by how much he looked like his Dad. The first thing I said was, “He looks exactly like J.P.!!” He still does!

Christina Mendoza of Tutti Bambini

PEOPLE: How has your relationship with each other changed since becoming parents? (Other than fighting over who gets to hold the baby!) Who’s handling most of the diaper duty?

Ashley: Throughout our relationship, our bond always seems to grow stronger with each milestone we reach. It’s still very early in our parenting careers, but it’s easy to see that it’ll take a lot of teamwork, support for one another, and patience when raising this child. You really need to be on the same page all the time. Ask us this question again when we are seasoned parents.

J.P. claims that I’m a bit of a baby hog. I don’t think I am! I just enjoy waking up with him in the middle of the night, cuddling with him in the rocking chair and changing his diaper. So, I guess I am the one on diaper duty. Okay, maybe I am a bit of a baby hog.

Courtesy J.P. Rosenbaum

PEOPLE: Ashley, can you tell us how breastfeeding is going? Have you hit any road bumps or did Fordham get the hang of it pretty quickly?

Ashley: I will say that the one thing I was not prepared for was how difficult breastfeeding was at the beginning. Everyone warns you about the sleepless nights and c-section recovery, but breastfeeding was the most difficult part of my recovery.

It was the only thing that made me break. It was so painful and emotionally exhausting. I would dread feeding and couldn’t enjoy the time we were supposed to spend bonding. Luckily, it only lasted a few days, and it’s become a lot easier. Why doesn’t anyone talk about how difficult it is?!

Christina Mendoza of Tutti Bambini

PEOPLE: J.P., how do you support Ashley and Fordham’s nursing routine? Do you get up for the late-night feeds?

J.P.: Believe it or not, there really is a LOT for me to do while Ashley is nursing. It ranges from cooking to cleaning to foot massages, to just about anything that will help her relax and focus on Ford.

Ash’s parents have been in town to help out for the first two weeks, so I’ve had it pretty easy. Ash has really been great about the late night feeds. She’s usually the one to get up because she knows I have work early the following day.

Don’t get me wrong, I offer and I’m more than happy to do it, but I think she actually loves doing it. Plus, it kinda helps if you have boobs!

Ashley Hebert J.P. Rosenbaum Son Ford Photo
Courtesy J.P. Rosenbaum

PEOPLE: Tell us about the nursery. Did you have a theme in mind from the start? Was there one item that you liked and used to build everything else around it?

Ashley: I am obsessed with our nursery. I went into my design session with Vanessa Antonelli from NessaLee Baby with an open mind; I wasn’t exactly sure which way I wanted to go with it.

I knew I didn’t want anything too babyish and I wanted a room he could grow into. Travel has been such an important part of our relationship, we thought it would be an appropriate theme. We also knew his name was going to be Ford, and that also went along with the travel theme! Perfect.

I was torn between doing a rustic or a modern room, so we decided to combine the two! I could not be happier with the way the room turned out. It is the best room in our home and Ford LOVES it too!

Ricky Stern Photography

PEOPLE: J.P., did you let Ashley handle designing the nursery or were you equally involved?

J.P.: Yes, this was something that Ashley has been dreaming about ever since we found out she was pregnant. I let her have free reign.

Plus, I was a bit superstitious when it came to doing things for the baby prior to him being born.

Ricky Stern Photography

PEOPLE: What’s your favorite part of the nursery?

Ashley: It’s so difficult to pick only one favorite part of the room, so I will pick three! Visually, my favorite part of the room is the Stikwood wall. It’s really the centerpiece and adds such a cool, rustic feel to the room.

Functionally, my favorite part of the room is the Little Castle glider. It is where I nurse, cuddle and rock Ford to sleep. It holds many special moments for us.

I also love my Kidsmill changing table and dresser. It is the most gorgeous piece of furniture we own and adds a modern touch to our room.

Ricky Stern Photography

PEOPLE: How has your dog adjusted to Fordham? Was there anything special you did to prepare her for baby?

Ashley: Our dog Boo has really surprised us. She usually requires a lot of attention, but she’s stepped back and has been much less maintenance since the baby has arrived.

She’s getting more comfortable with the baby, but hasn’t cuddled with him yet; she even runs away from him when he cries.

We brought her one of his blankets from the hospital the day before we brought him home, but I’m not sure that really did anything!

Christina Mendoza of Tutti Bambini

— Anya Leon

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Showing 58 comments

Valerie on

I very much appreciate that she talks about how difficult breastfeeding is. Kudos to her for having the guts to talk about it. Congratulations on your beautiful baby!!

KingKing on

Sweet couple, beautiful baby. Congratulations to Ashley and JP.

Catherine on

Aww, he is so cute! He does look a lot like his daddy. I do wish more moms would talk about how hard breastfeeding is. A lot of women make it sound so easy but it can be difficult, and painful.

twinsmom on

Beautiful nursery! Beautiful Family! Congrats!

Tara on

I think this is a really lovely story and the baby is so cute and alert. One picture had me concerned – they need to trim his nails. I’m glad in one photo the baby was wearing mittens so he wouldn’t scratch himself but during bath time and other times they so quickly touch their face and can scratch themselves pretty easily. It’s hard cutting a newborn baby’s fingernails since they are so fragile but it needs to be done. They are WAY too long.

Cute nursery!

maryhelenc on

They seem so happy & he is so cute. I’m glad she talked about how hard nursing can be. I struggled & I’d hear people say it was so easy & it made me feel like less of a mom. It can be tough!

Andrea on

Congratulations! What an adorable baby! JP and Ashley will make great parents,

joanna on

It offends me when people spend a lot of money on a nursery. Notice I wrote “it offends me,” because it is merely what I think, not an attempt to influence or judge. It offends me. When my son was born we had a dresser we got at a garage sale and I painted it with rainbows and circles and stars…we used a desk as a changing table (padded on top) and had a wall mural with hot air balloons on it. All his clothes were from garage sales too. We had the mandatory mobile over the changing table.

that’s a really cute baby, and I rarely think babies are cute.

yeah, breastfeeding can be challenging, and she’s wrong, everyone talks about it EVERYONE TALKS ABOUT I! Why are there “lactation consultants”? All the books talk about it. And why rave about a husband who is supportive after a C-section, any decent husband would be! DUH! Mine did everything too, and that C-section scar still hurt 5 years later ;-(

Nicole on

Omg that baby is sooo cute! She looks great. Love the pic with the baby’s feet and their heart shaped hands around them awww

dancer92136 on

He has the bluest eyes. He is an adorable little man.

Judy on

Baby is sweet and they look happy.

robinepowell on

What a sweetheart.

heather on

OMG it is J.P. with hair! I cannot believe how much he looks like J.P., it doesn’t even seem possible!

Nadia Nyc on


starbbycat on

that bottom pic of the little feet encircled with two loving hands in the shape of heart is beyond words – thanks for this lovely image.

Jenna hulst on

She called him her baby daddy? Tacky!

Amanda on

What a beautiful baby! Congrats you guys. Love his room, love his name. Many blessings!

Diane on

Ashley and JP are my favorite couple that came from the Bachelorette. Congratulations on your beautiful family!!!!

sandy on

very cute pics, have no clue who they are, and why does the subject of breast feeding even come up,? its like, oh how do you change a diaper, its just dumb, no ones business and I personally think breast feeding is not the way to go, but each their own..

alexa on

T M I on the breastfeeding

Anonymous on

Beautiful baby! God Bless!

mary on

how can breastfeeding “not be the way to go”? Idiot. Even if you choose not to, to imply it isn’t the way to go or what is proven the best, more natural thing for your baby. Ugh. I fear for our future.

Brooke on

OMG….that is hilarious. Ford is JP with hair…..Amazing how much he looks like him

R on

Why would you EVER say that breastfeeding isn’t the way to go? Can you name a way in which is isn’t? It may not be right for YOU but the benefits to the baby are inarguably amazing and beneficial in so many ways.

Ellie on

Fordham Rosenbaum. Not a great name. But a cute little guy.

jones on

I really like them as a couple and I appreciate that she is being honest about breastfeeding. Many women have difficulty with it and many women are so judgmental of others if they struggle and give up.

Tess on

I know some people called her ugly, and homely compared to other girls in the show. Say what you will but I think she’s brainy and is exceptionally blessed in the love department. She is lovely I am very happy for her that she found the right guy. Great decision Ashley!

Natalie on

He is such a little peanut! So adorable!!! What a sweet family:) Congrats on your newest family member!

janet on

Awww, baby is precious and beautiful. Congratulations to the parents!

guest on

Cute baby! He looks like his dad!

Tanya on

Fordham is absolutely adorable! Congratulations to them!

R on

I can’t deal with you people who say breastfeeding is gross or TMI. Grow up, educate yourselves and keep a lid on your moronic comments.

Mel on

Joanna.. Nothing wrong with affirming your husband.. He was being a decent husband.. she was acknowledging that.. You said your husband was decent, you acknowledged that. Your quote: “And why rave about a husband who is supportive after a C-section, any decent husband would be! DUH! Mine did everything too,”. Keywords: “any decent husband”… But, not ALL husbands ARE decent…not a fair statement from you.. Regarding the breastfeeding comment.. You sound harsh on that too… She was just stating her experience thus far… I see nothing wrong with anything she said… Yes, you are allowed to state your opinion.. As am I..

Tee on

Okay, I have to admit that I’m giggling at the thought of a newborn baby “loving” a room. Come on, folks! But other than that, I really enjoyed reading this interview! Ford is absolutely precious and I think it’s wonderful that Ashley worked through those initial days of nursing when things were so hard!

Carrow on

Congratulations to the new parents. I just love hearing about them.

The picture of him swaddled is absolutely adorable and his nursery is gorgeous.

Once again congratulations. What a blessing.

Ana on

That baby looks like a rhesus macaque.

BostonBabe on

Adorable story. Fordham is so cute and those long fingers will be playing piano and guitar. Congratulations!!

kazzy on

Adorable baby! My boyfriend’s name is Ford. He has hated it his whole life. I actually like it and was curious if it would ever come in vogue. I think Owen Wilson’s baby’s middle name is Ford and someone on Glee just named their baby Ford. My boyfriend just laughed and said “poor kids!”

sunnydaz on

I love this couple!!! They are the best couple to ever come out of the bachelor, bachelorette franchise. They are soooo down to earth and you can see that they are very much in love!!! Thanks for the story on them. Wishing them a lifetime of love and happiness!!!!

Summer on

Ok, everyone, please ignore the obvious trolls on here posting anti-breastfeeding one-liners. It’s so pathetically obvious that it’s a basement dweller. Anyway, I agree with another poster who said EVERYONE talks about the difficulties of breastfeeding. My local hospitals have lactation consultants visit nursing mothers’ rooms and also follow up after mom and baby go home. There are also free support groups and other resources for parents. Maybe she wasn’t listening? And I always chuckle at these articles raving over how wonderful a mom is…yeah…the first month is a blur of euphoria. Talk to us after the first few years.

iheartnames on

You’re kidding right? If not, apparently you missed the sole purpose of breasts (feeding children)!

mel on

All those comments about breastfeeding not being the way to go? As someone who was adopted at 8 weeks, i wasn’t breastfed and I think i turned out okay.

And what about those moms who can’t breastfeed because of health issues with her or her child?

I have 6 kids and while I breastfed all of them, i do NOT get angry or pass judgment on moms who make the choice to bottle their child(ren)formula.

I am thrilled that all you ladies who jump on the “bottles are BAD” bandwagon had perfect children who latched the first time, never projectile vomited after every. single. feeding, and slept through the night starting 8 hours after their birth; and that you never had a blocked milk duct or bleeding, raw nipples and were able to clean your house without help and cook gourmet meals since the moment you walked into your home after making that trip home from the hospital.

I hope that someday, me and my children can be as perfect as you and yours.

As long as my child is happy and thriving, then however i choose to feed MY child is none of your concern. Have some sympathy for those that don’t do what you deem to be right.

Marky on

Breastfeeding that first 2 weeks can be difficult…I remember having a plugged duct with the last one, and that nipple was even bleeding for a couple of days. I had plenty of milk, but she still wanted to nurse every hour and 1/2 around the clock, I could only nurse with one breast for 2 days, and wow, I was so tired! By the time she was 3 weeks old, she was nursing like a champ, breasts were fine, she was nursing every 2-3 hours, and I was in the swing of it, but whew! Those first 14-18 days were something else even though I was determined, and so, I felt, was she. So glad i didn’t give up…..

Anonymous on

mel- I think you’re missing the point. We all know that not breastfeeding (whether by choice or not) doesn’t make you a horrible mother (at least I hope we do! If somebody on here honestly thinks that it DOES, then I’m sorry, but they need help!).

However, saying “I don’t think breastfeeding is the way to go,” is clearly implying that no one should breastfeed (rather than that breastfeed simply isn’t the poster’s preference for feeding their children). THAT is what people are objecting to!

Anyway, Ford is adorable! I wish PEOPLE had asked how they chose his name, though. I’d love to know if it was a family name or what. 🙂

Anita on

Joanna, there’s nothing to be offended about here. I’m sure they didn’t pay a penny for this nursery. All the product placements paid for it. Besides, who wouldn’t want the best for their baby? If garage sales do it for you that’s fine. I personally wouldn’t want to go that route for my child.

Librababe on

He is the cutest baby ever! Omg

Hea on

He is one of the cutest babies I’ve ever seen!

Brooke on

Why are new baby pics so cloying and obnoxious nowadays? I miss the days of candid polaroids and unstaged pictures. Ok, maybe you’d have one staged family picture at Olan Mills every five years (that nobody ever liked), but that was it! These days every one and their uncle is a baby photographer taking the same fake, narcissistic “we’re a perfect family” photos.

guest on

That baby’s fingernails are incredibly long and need to be cut. How can a mother see that everyday and not be bothered?

Sarah on

New parents are often terrified to cut their newborns nails and put mittens on and wait for the 1 week pediatrician visit. Get off their case. You don’t live with them. You don’t know them personally. And judging new parents is really not something to be proud of.

Guest on

I LOVE the last picture of his little feet in their hands shaped as a heart. Beautiful!!

Juli on

Gorgeous pictures! I think it’s okay if she’s a little bit of a baby hog, it’s her first child. Fordham is adorable and he does look like his father.

dd on

thanks so much 2 the parents for sharing their beautiful photos. I hope the baby gets the fathers squinty eyes, which i think are really cute. They babys rm is quite unique, but i like it alot. Very cool. They look like a great little family. Congrats.

dd on

typo: The babys room…

dd on

great name, sounds masculine, sounds like a family name, it unique, very nice.

Mel on

Brooke… Completely unfair and judgemental post about the photos…. Calling it narcissistic, etc, etc… So unfair.. Be happy for a happy family… It seems that the most unhappy people have a hard time saying positive things.. And, if you don’t feel like being positive.. keep quiet… Wishing you the best..

CaliforniaTravelHorse on

That is the ugliest baby that I have ever seen!

Joanne on

I watched Ashley on the Bachelor and then Bachelorette….She is a great lady and she finally found her man and now has her baby. Congratulations to you both !!