A Blogger's Confession

Ok guys, I need to publicly confess something and it has to do with a nighttime beauty routine. I am going to be totally honest here, as shameful as it may sound.

I was never great at washing my face every single night, but after I had a baby and now live a completely sleep deprived life, its something I struggle with even more. I just want to crash into bed so I can get at least two hours of sleep before the baby wakes me up again and that is my only priority. But then during a 2am feeding and my face feels disgusting, I'm kicking myself for not taking the five minutes to do my nightly routine. 

I have tried so many different incentives. I have bought myself really expensive Bobbi Brown regimens so I would be more motivated. I have told myself if I go seven days straight I'll get myself a pedicure. But the truth is, I'd get that pedicure either way ;) 

So here, I am....my LAST resort. A public, full out confession on the World Wide Web. I figure I can't let the world down now! I just need some help staying on track!

MY GOAL---wash my face every night for seven days in a row. Last night was night number one. So that's February 5th-February 12th. 

MY PRIZE---I will buy myself a Clarisonic or DDS cleansing brush! If anyone has any recommendations, they are very much welcome!

Wish me luck! I will report back, hopefully with the good news!


New Mom Style Guide

Its a whirlwind when you finally get to hold that baby in your hands and all of a sudden you carry a mantle of life provider for this infant. Amidst all your bodily and hormonal changes not to mention lifestyle changes that come with a baby, also comes adjusting your own wardrobe.

I remember the day after Eve was born and my uterus had begun to shrink, I couldn't wait to put on normal clothes and get out of my pajamas, even just for an hour! I wanted to feel normal again and walk around. After recovery, I now make it a daily goal to GET DRESSED...even if I'm stuck in the house nursing a baby nearly every hour and fighting her to take a nap. I'm a much happier mom when I am dressed for work, working as a mom!

 First time we took her to a restaurant. BCBG skirt and Joe Jeans silk button down top. Handbag and diaper bag in one. 

Needless to say, my style has had to make some alterations to fit my new lifestyle. I acquired a lot of nursing friendly tops, with wide v-necks and cottons to handle frequent laundering and lots of baby spit up. I got some from Target, Loft, and Nordstrom Rack. I try to wear things I don't have to care about getting dirty. I wear lots of comfy leggings also from Target, Loft, and H&M. But I definitely have a couple super comfy jeans to really feel dressed on days when I need to. 

Speaking of jeans----I highly recommend buying a new pair of jeans for your post-partum body as soon as that baby comes. Even if you plan on working hard to get your body back, you will feel a hundred times better in a pair of jeans that properly fit around some of those extra love handles than your old super tight skinny jeans. That will only depress you if you try those on two weeks post partum.  

For me, I felt closest to my "old self" after the first three months. Before then, I still felt sort of not in my own body. 

Shoes--get a couple of super comfy go-to shoes. You want to wear things you enjoy wearing while also being practical. I prefer a couple of great flats that are casual, a few sneakers, and other "mom/walking" shoes.

Going out---Even when I know I will be away from the baby for while, I am always prepared to nurse no matter what. Just in case I need to right before I leave or right when I walk through the door, I still dress accordingly so that my outfit is nursing ready. That means, no dresses for quite a while! Oh well! (unless they have buttons) 

---when I go out, I like to wear heels. Thats my way to feel like a non-milk machine and to feel like a plain ol' woman...I bring out the heels!
Four months post-partum...Michael Kors heels. 

Some great tanks are awesome to wear underneath shirts if you plan on nursing in public. I love the nursing clip on tank from Amazon, Undercover Mama. 

Nails---its a small detail, but even as small as painted nails will help you feel fresh!

Jewelry--I had to go shopping for some baby friendly earrings....non-dangly, and some more dainty and less bulky necklaces. I used to be a huge bracelet person, but its not so friendly when your baby is trying to rest her head on your clunky accessories. 

Finding yourself as a new mom, is a very important transition. Its filled with wonder, newness, excitement and some frustration, confusion and lots of sleepless nights. It takes a while to feel comfortable in your new skin, just embrace where you are because that baby is more important than even the most luxurious new trends. You might be surprised to learn some new things about yourself in the journey as well! Fashion will always be around, your baby won't always be a baby. Take care of yourself in whatever ways that feed your soul most. If that's being trendy, then go for it! 


Maternity Wardrobe Essentials

The dress above is Marc by Marc Jacobs and is non-maternity.

I survived my pregnancy only purchasing 3 maternity tops and one pair of shorts!!!

Now--- before you flip out...there a slight catch. This does not include borrowed clothes and gift card purchases. ;) More on that in a bit.

Here's how I tackled the fashion dilemma and what my emphasis was throughout the months:

1. My first goal early on was to wear every last bit of clothing I already owned for as long as possible. I bought the bella band and wore non maternity jeans until I just couldn't take it anymore. I utilized all my looser fitting clothing.

2. I did shop mind you---just not much maternity. I bought a size or two larger and looked for the looser cuts of fabric. I highly recommend this method! First off, its MUCH cheaper! Secondly, I found them more comfortable than some maternity stuff.

3. Luckily, I have a fabulous friend Fran, who so generously lent me some super stylish maternity clothes! Her Asos skinny jeans were a lifesaver!! And a super duper light weight olive green pair of shorts! So, I highly recommend borrowing where you can!

4. Also, I received a gift card to Gap and totally took advantage of some maternity denim shorts, a tank and a tee. They have served useful and pretty comfy too.

5. I bought a tank top from Target and although I wore it quite a lot, I wouldn't go back there next time. The fabric was way too low quality, and made me itch. I did buy a couple elastic waist band skirts that were great staples. The other store where I was happy purchasing maternity was H&M! They had some really cute tops and were pretty affordable. I bought like 4 non-maternity mini skirts from H&M which have been amazing! They are easy to wear, wash, and pair anything with! These last three-four weeks, I won't be wearing them much, since I pretty much can't close my legs at this point. :)

6. The non-maternity clothes that I purchased were mostly from Banana Republic Outlet, Loft and TJMaxx. I tried to get good brands so the clothes would hold up really well.


Try to buy as much cotton stretch as you can, I HATED cotton by the end, but its worth it to help you be able to have room to grow. It also prepares you for having a slobbering baby as well. Silk and spit up doesn't mesh too well.

In case you aren't familiar with pregnancy sizing... its basically your same size...depending on how tightly or loosely you like your clothes to fit. But when your belly is huge, too tight is not much fun. 

My life savers were my solids and staples! A good long skirt, good pair of jeans, colors that go with anything like black, white, red, etc. Those pieces saved me! Again, I nearly wanted to burn every single item I had by the end, but hey, I saved a lot of money! And trust me, most of your maternity clothes you won't want to wear again after that baby comes, so it pays to make a little go a long way. 

Under garments--- I'm HUGE on having nice under garments! What you wear underneath helps you feel better about the outside! I pampered myself in this area. I regularly bought Victoria's Secret bras and panties as my size changed. I don't regret this at all! Even though, those bras are obsolete now, since they weren't nursing bras. In retrospect, next time I may splurge on fancy nursing bras to wear during pregnancy. 

Pajamas---You better get the most luxurious and comfortable things to sleep in! Sleeping is a challenge enough when you're pregnant and you don't want your clothes to bother you either! Stick to light weight and airy fabrics. No matter what time of year you are pregnant, you will most likely be warm!

Workout clothes---There were quite a few tanks and tops on the market that were designed to fit loosely. Those were super comfy! I didn't buy any work out clothes that were specifically maternity. Just went up a size in looser cuts of fabric.

Overall the key to having a great pregnancy is to be good to yourself! So do whatever you feel good about and wear what you feel good in! Good luck and remember, it will be over before you know it!

Maternity top from H&M, non-maternity skirt from Target


Pregnancy Tips

When it is your first time being pregnant you have absolutely no idea what to expect! You can read about the common things people go through, but you simply won't know what it will be like until you go through it for yourself. If I had to sum up one overarching pregnancy tip it would be...

Everybody is different!! Don't compare. Be thankful you are you!

Some tips I'm sharing that are general enough for other women to learn from: 
Diet---Although I never really had any cravings and still continued to eat healthy, I wasn't aware of the amount of protein you need to intake! Try to eat some form of protein with every meal. And of course small frequent meals are a must. Also, if you're not used to consuming a lot of calories a day, make sure you take in about 300 extra calories a day.

Emotions---I actually had fewer breakdowns than I expected to have, but WHEN they happen, they are almost impossible to stop. Even when you know its for no reason. Just be patient, let it play out, and it will go away before you know it. Make sure you communicate this with your husband so he knows its YOU not HIM. I can't believe how many times I have had strong urges to tell complete strangers a piece of my mind! If this happens try to distract yourself and move on so you don't follow through and say something you might regret.

Communication---This one sort of goes along with the emotions. But as you are constantly changing to your new state, your husband will need a few hints about this. So make sure you clearly communicate your needs, aches, worries, etc. He might not be used to some new needs for you, so this is pretty important.

Gratitude---It can be easy to get the "complaining" ball rolling when you're feeling so many new and uncomfortable bodily changes. One thing I started doing about half way through pregnancy is writing a gratitude list every night before bed. This helped take my focus off myself and changed my attitude too.

Research--- With a plethora of information in the world about health risks and what to avoid when pregnant, it can be overwhelming and scary. I recommend having a few close resources who have been through it and can give you sound advice and of course a trusted care giver. I was amazed at how many in home remedies there are for nearly every pregnancy discomfort (thanks to my midwives). You don't have to spend a fortune buying all the gadgets and accessories when you know how to research home remedies!

Relax--- Overall, try to relax about things. It is not the end of the world if you skip the prenatal vitamin for one day. If you have one terribly emotional night, your baby will be fine. Expect to have some sleepless nights, but be thankful they are preparing you for the baby. As long as these don't become a daily pattern it will be okay. Especially at the end of pregnancy, just focus on self care and enjoyment! Preparations are made and now its time to just have fun! Which is why, I'd recommend getting the hard things (nursery, shopping etc) out of the way sooner rather than later.

Exercise--- Each trimester brings on a different set of experiences and adjustments. Some are actually positive reliefs! The best tip I can tell you is---exercise now! Before pregnancy! If you are doing this, it shouldn't be a problem for you to keep it up. If you're not used to exercising, try just walking for starters. Its great for the hips and mental health as well. Don't try any new programs during pregnancy. Prenatal yoga is great, even for beginners. I really enjoyed most any prenatal workout because then you don't have to worry about modifications and it feels great to work out with other pregnant women. Most importantly, when working out, especially pregnant is to listen to your body! Be aware of your heart rate and pains you might feel and make adjustments. Its good motherly practice, because you have to take care of yourself first to take care of your baby too.

Resources--- Apps--I loved the My Pregnancy App. I read the Birth Club Forum every night before bed and it made me not feel alone and know there are lots of other women dealing with their own troubles too. The kick counter tool that comes with it is great for end of pregnancy. If you're not already tracking your cycle with some app, it will come in handy when you're trying to find out your due date, so I recommend finding a good app (I use iPeriod) and starting that habit. I also used a pedometer app to track my walking and the All in One Yoga app for poses and routines any time you need them.
                     Books--Besides books on natural childbirth, I read The Motherly Art of Breastfeeding. If you're planning to breastfeed, its an excellent resource with tips that extend way beyond nursing. My favorite baby book I've read is called CALMS: A guide to soothing your baby. Its an excellent easy read with modern research and I believe every word it says. One thing my husband and I did since we haven't been married for a long time, is read a great marital book. It was a great connective thing for us to do since we will be focused on kids books for the next few years.
                      Other---I highly recommend a birthing class! Ours was six weeks long and pretty extensive, but worth every penny and every moment! We gained so much knowledge about the unknowns of birth. We will be watching The Happiest Baby on the Block DVD really soon! And if you're curious about home birth, The Business of Being Born is quite the eye opening documentary.

Clothes---That's a whole other post!! Coming soon!!

Be flexible---Pregnancy brings so many transitions emotionally, mentally, physically, not to mention the life transition. Thank goodness its nine months long, which allows plenty of time to break habits, start new ones, adjust to new things etc. Its obvious God knew exactly what He was doing when He planned all this! So lets trust it! Just go with the changes. Make healthy adjustments to make sure you're getting good sleep of course, but learn to be flexible. Every day is completely different so be there present for that day. Its a great preparation for Parenthood, I can tell already.

Now, I've still got 2-4 weeks of this, so who knows else might happen over these weeks! I hope this was somewhat helpful for you. Feel free to ask any specific questions. I tried to keep this informative for any type of birth, natural or not. But I can get on my home birth soap box at any time when needed :)


Gender neutral bright colored Nursery

We are all ready to meet our baby, find out the gender, give she/he a name, and pour on the hugs and kisses!

Here is our nursery that just came together piece by piece. The only vision I had in mind initially was bright primary colors. I used my old rug and low Ikea shelf that I had in college and loved. I made the curtains, inspired by an Ikea fabric, but decided to draw on them myself and thought that yellow backing would add a nice glow.

 I really wanted white baby furniture that I got off Craig's List! Other big pieces are also from Ikea and all the adorable handmade black and white items were from my Black and White themed baby shower made by my best friend and sister! I threw in some drawings of my husband's and paintings painted by his late Aunt. Gotta throw some art in the mix!

Take a look...

Our collection of lovable friends given to us by lots of loving people! 

Already started a great book collection!!

The baby wreath I made, one piece on the right fell off because I was so ready to hang it and didn't let the glue dry enough. 

Please forgive my very amateur photography skills. I hope you found this somewhat inspirational, but it will be sooo much better when our brand new little human will reside there! Just a month away!



Up until last week, I had no clue what a labyrinth was. It was at our birthing class, that I learned what it was. Our teacher had us draw a labyrinth with chalk pastel and then trace our finger from start to finish. The significant thing about a labyrinth is that there is only one way in and one way out. We drew in chalk so we would purposefully get a little messy which signifies childbirth and also the journey of birth. This exercise really hit home to me. As I was tracing I would find myself saying things like, "this part is easy" "this part is complicated" "looks like I'm almost done by not quite" "okay, almost there""don't want to get too messy".... all these phrases are things that quite possibly might go through my head during natural childbirth. I'm happy to have a glimpse of an understanding of the process. That's one of the reasons we chose this particular class, since it was very art and hands on based. 

I'm excited to embark in our labyrinth journey when our little one is ready to come out and greet us!

Also, there is this really cool website, where you can see labyrinths from all over the world! Its pretty awesome! 


The Civil Wars

This song really doesn't have much to do with where I am in life right now. But it still brings up so many emotions. Whether its about love in general or past relationships. I think anyone can be touched by the song's deep lyrics and message of conflicting feelings.

And yes, its quite depressing. So yay for that :)

What a superb group this is though! Love them!