Wellness Wednesday || My Favorite, Do Anywhere, Booty Band Moves

 When I was packing for our trip last week, along with an inappropriate amount of sweaters, I tossed in my booty bands at the last minute, in hopes that I could squeeze in a quick morning workout. So on Friday, TJ and I came up with this efficient booty bands workout with some simple moves you can do anytime, anywhere. It gets your heart rate up, tones your body, and is does the trick in a short amount of time…. I ended up sharing a little on instastories and the feedback was overwhelming. People wanted some ideas on how to use the bands… some mentioned that they have them sitting in their desk at work in the hopes of squeezing in some toning moves at lunch/break… and others said they only know one move and would appreciate some suggestions… I hope the workout above helps!

And, with the holidays upon us, sometimes getting in longer workouts is tough. Yet, I think we can all spare at least 15 minutes a day to move and release some good feeling endorphins. If you’re looking to hit the restart button after the Thanksgiving weekend, complete this workout and then sip one of my favorite banana chocolate smoothies. I’ve listed the workout moves below too, just in case the video won’t play for you….

But before that, I wanted to wish you and your family a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! I am so grateful for all your support over the year and wouldn’t be where I am without it. Thank you for all your kind messages and encouraging words. I hope that this holiday is one that is filled with love and happiness (and a libation or two) with those you love! See you Friday!

Repeat 3xs, for a 15 minute workout (give or take, depending how quickly you move through the moves)

25 sumo squat jumps
10 squats with side raises (on each side)
15 walking side lunges (on each side)
30 mountain climbers
15 lateral shoulder moves (on each side)
15 shoulder raises (each side)
15 jump lunges (on each side)
15 standing crunches (on each side)
15 donkey kicks (on each side)
50 jumping jacks

(Velour pullover, capris)

(pullover (extra 25% off with code dontstress), leggings)



Family Snow Day || Family Photos

Before we headed to Park City, my mom and I headed to the mall with Harper to buy some winter weather gear for her. Not knowing how she’d warm up to the snow, I decided to hold off on the full blown snow suit, figuring I could buy one there if need be. I knew that I needed to follow the same strategy I take when dressing myself for colder temps: layers. Knowing we had some great basics with these jeggings + this adorable peplum top, I went on a mission to find the perfect “outerwear” pieces for her and started our search at Nordstrom (she’s always enamored by the balloons in the shoe department so it makes shopping a little easier….). They have some of the cutest pieces for those chilly days, so I knew I’d have success. I had purchased this anorak for her a few months ago (featured here), and I knew layering it over her favorite sweatshirt would be perfect for a non-freezing day…..

And then I stumbled across this faux fur coat and thought game over. It was warm, she loved it (had to beg her to take it off in the store), and I knew it would be perfect to snap some photos of her in for our Christmas card (we didn’t have any plans to take family photos… they were scheduled the day we arrived since I thought the fresh snow would make for beautiful photos….)… and I figured it would be great for the upcoming holidays….

When it came time to playing in the snow after our photos, sure enough, Harper was lukewarm to the white stuff… preferring to stomp on the ice, kick around snowballs, and run on the perimeter rather than jump in head on…. so, these rain boots were the perfect option. They kept her feet dry and warm, and will be perfect for our rainy days at home (Nordstrom has tons of kiddo options of Hunter boots)….

A few other outerwear pieces that I am loving for the little tikes include this faux fur parka, reversible rain jacket, faux fur hooded vest, and fleece bomber jacket. I also love this little pom beanie and ear flap hat… as well as these quilted faux fur booties and these waterproof boots….. I also bought her these little mittens (which she wore in the morning but took off as the temps warmed up).

For the little guys I’m loving this forest green bomber jacket, waterproof parka, and North Face Jacket. I also think this pom beanie and ear flap hat are adorable. As far as warm, waterproof boots go, these are stylish, yet practical.

(Outfit Details || Harper’s Jacket | Harper’s Top | Harper’s Jeggings (wore these tights underneath) | Harper’s Boots | Harper’s Beanie (identical) | My Coat (runs large, 3 colors) | My Sweater | Leggings | Boots | Beanie | TJ’s Jacket | TJ’s Hoodie | TJ’s Jeans | TJ’s Beanie)

Thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post. 


Weekend Recap || Park City

(After a full day of snow, this sunset was spectacular)

I’ve been looking forward to this trip since we left last year. As a born and raised California native, snow isn’t something we get to experience often… unless we head to our local mountains… and even then it’s hit or miss. So, as I monitored the weather reports the days before the trip, I was utterly ecstatic to see snowfall forecasted for one of the days we were here (I know, I sound crazy to all those on the East Coast and Midwest….). It ended up snowing, heavily the day after we arrived, which afforded us lazy time inside (something that was much needed), some naps, and family coloring time….. the days that followed included much of the same, along with playing in the snow and warming Harper up to the freezing stuff (pun intended)….

And while no trip with a toddler is without challenges (we had a 3am wake-up from little miss and it took and hour and half to get her to fall back asleep… something that rarely happens… or how we hired a photographer to shoot family photos and Harper refused to let us put her down…. and then decided after the shoot that the snow looked fun… ), we have learned to lower our expectations, roll with the punches, and just create memories wherever we can. Which was exactly what this trip was… one big memory for the books… both the good and the bad (which I am sure we will look back on some day and laugh…). So, while we have one last evening left, I intend to soak up every minute with my little family….

Also, I received a few questions regarding a review of the hotel. We stayed here last year as well, and couldn’t recommend it more. It’s very kiddo friendly, and they have a fun s’mores hour, indoor pool, and lots of space to play outside.

(We went cozy for a quick day of travel…. Harper’s tee, Mocs, My Leggings, Henley, Cardigan (other cozy cardigans), Bootie)

(Waiting for the snow storm…..)

(Warming the insides… because it was freeeezing outside….)

(Some of the best food at Harvest Cafe…. the paleo banana bread and avocado smash were our favs…)

(It was all fun and games until she thought she was stuck…. My Jacket, Faux Fur Vest (other great outdoor vests), Beanie, Harper’s Jacket, Harper’s Beanie, Harper’s Booties)

(We seriously couldn’t get over how gorgeous the snow fall was….)

(I immediately put my jacket on after this photo….. henley, beanie (more favorite beanies), scarf (gorgeous comfy scarves))

(S’mores hour…..)

(Bundled up for s’mores hour….. Faux Fur Anorak (other faux fur coats))

(Loved being held by daddy the entire trip! Harper’s Vest, Tee)

(One of the most beautiful views, with smooches from little miss… Pink beanie, Harper’s leggings)

(Chilly beverages on a chilly evening…. totally normal….)

(Cozied up with the boo…. Beanie, Sweater, Vest)

(Sunday comfies…. until little miss wanted to go outside again… joggers, hoodie)

Hard to believe Thanksgiving is a mere 4 days away…. if you’re looking for a delicious, and healthy, stuffing recipe, I’ve been making this one form my family for the past several years. I end up doubling it because everyone always wants seconds. It’s also delicious the day after!

 A few items I purchased recently include this cute ruffle sleeve sweater (obsessed), deep plum chenille sweater, beautiful lace sleeve tee, fuzzy white sweater, and oatmeal colored v-neck peplum top…. love them all for the fall/winter months.

I’ve also had my eye on a few cozy lounge items… like these off duty sweatpants, plaid pajama shorts, and star sweatshirt. Also, my favorite joggers from last year were restocked (I own them in black and the olive color…).

Also, how gorgeous is this rust colored velvet blazer??

I also didn’t anticipate that it was going to be in the high 80’s for us on Thanksgiving day… insert sad face… so I also think this sweatshirt dress is the best of both worlds… cool enough with a slight cozy factor.


Thanksgiving Day Look 3 || All The Cozies Please

This is, by far, my favorite part of Thanksgiving Day. A full belly, a fire in fireplace, pie on the way (I take 3 pieces… pumpkin, apple, + chocolate….), and bubbly in a coffee mug (well, I actually don’t discriminate what it comes in….). It’s after extended family has left, when it’s just our immediate family, that we all get cozy, and kick off the Christmas Season with The Griswold’s Christmas Vacation. We laugh at the same parts every year… even though we’ve watched it several dozen times (my personal favorite scene has to be the very end… when Clark goes crazy….. ). Some people fall asleep in the middle (I won’t name names….) and so we inevitably end up watching it the next evening too. It’s the small traditions, like watching a stupid movie we watch year after year, that I cherish most…

Buuut, before all of that, I immediately kick off my shoes from the day and toss on comfy slippers and cozy pajamas. Every year, I go on the search for the comfiest pair of slippers for the season. I always start that search at Nordstrom, because they have the best selection… especially of my favorite: Uggs. They’re like walking on clouds and keep my toes toasty. My favorite this year has to be these pom slippers… but I also own this classic option…. and my sister owns these moccasins which I wear from time to time when I forget mine. I just bought she and I these matching bear bootie slippers (seriously, so cute)… something I started doing a few years ago. And, if you don’t like having your toes covered (I get it, I don’t either during the summer months) these plush slide slippers are a perfect option (I got them this summer in the blush). Either way, comfy clothes at the end of the Thanksgiving holiday are always a must for me…..

(Outfit Details || Slippers (wearing size 7, 3 color options) | Pajamas (run large) | Lounge Cardigan | Beanie | Mug | Pom Throw | Stripe Throw)

Thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post. 


Thanksgiving Look 2 || Dressy To Casual In A Cinch

So, if you have two Thanksgivings, things can get interesting…. first of all, how do you make room for two huge feasts in your belly?? And how do you dress when you have homes that have two different dress codes for the day… you know, what if one is a little dressier than the other… or one is dressy and the next is super casual? Enter today’s outfit, with Everlane to the rescue (they have some of the best basic pieces ever, all at honest prices, and excellent quality). The top layers are all business, and once you peel them off it’s a casual party….

Perfectly polished with an oversized tweed blazer… and über comfortable and casual with a super soft hooded cashmere pullover (hooded sweatshirt for an identical look). Toss these velvet low block heel beauties on for the dressier get together (and BTW they are oh-so-comfortable and make being on your feet for any extended amount of time a cinch… trust me, I never buy heels anymore and these fit all my criteria) and change into a sleek sneaker.. or just toss the jeans and heels all together and throw on these cozy joggers for the ultimate casual look.

A few other favorite items to take your look from dressy to casual include Everlane’s selection of casual tees (all so cute but love this stripe option), beautiful silk cami (great price, lots of color options), and these elastic waist casual pants (um… are they not perfect for a day of eating???… and easily pair with the blazer, hoodie, + heels). In conclusion… it’s Everlane to the rescue for a dressy to casual Thanksgiving day!

(Outfit Details || Blazer | Hooded Sweater Jeans | Heels (come in multiple colors) | Scarf)

Thank you to Everlane for sponsoring this post. 


Wellness Wednesday || 9 Ways To Stay Healthy During The Holidays…Mentally + Physically

I always find it ironic that one of the most festive times of the year is often filled with illnesses and stress (sorry to be a downer, but we’ve all heard of the holiday that was ruined due to flu that took down the entire family….). With the cooler temps, indulgent lifestyle, and festive celebrations, sleep, exercise, and an overall sense of taking care of the self is often neglected. And with so much on the “to-do” list it’s easy to see why it takes a back burner. Yet, I always find that when that happens, I tend to feel lethargic, and to be honest, not in such a “festive” spirit…..

For me though, health composes of both mental and physical components…. if I’m feeling good physically but stressed out of my mind how “healthy” can I really be? So, today I’m sharing the 9 ways I’m prioritizing my health this holiday season…..

1. Don’t Compare: This is such an easy time of year to get caught up in this trap…. from someone going to more parties than you to that person having the “perfect” family photo (something I don’t ever think I’ll experience with my little tornado… haha). I’m completely guilty in this category, but always feel like crap when I do it. For me personally, it’s so important to take inventory of all I have to be grateful for regularly… that way, when the desire to compare creeps in, I can easily recall the blessings I’ve been given.

2. Practice “The Season Of Giving”: While there’s no doubt that this “season” is commercially marked with gifts and getting, I think it’s crucial to “give back” to embody the true meaning of the season. It’s been proven that giving back lowers stress levels, depression, and blood pressure, while increasing self-esteem and overall happiness. Each year my family and I adopt a family to take Thanksgiving and Christmas meals to (we drop off the ingredients for the meal). We started this about 9 years ago, and I still remember the first time we dropped off the basket. The family didn’t speak English… and my parents, sister, nor myself speak Spanish… so, thankfully TJ was there to guide the process with the Spanish he knows. The family was profoundly grateful and I remember the immediate mood lift I received. Of course, there are smaller ways to give back during this time as well… if you see a homeless person in front of a grocery store, buy them a few items from the store…. volunteer time for a cause that means a lot to you, adopt a child to provide a gift to (I feel like stores have these opportunities all the time)…. whenever I’m considering “giving back” I’m always reminded of the quote from Anne Frank: “No one has ever become poor by giving.”

3. Simple Swaps: While there are some things I don’t care about being “waistline friendly” (i.e. pumpkin + apple pie… just give me the real thing) there are other indulgences that I can make simple swaps with and find they taste just as good. I like to sub apple sauce for butter, coconut sugar instead of regular granulated sugar (benefits explained in more detail here), and alternative flours (my favorite is almond flour). I guess I feel like making simple swaps can often ensure my little indulgences are filled with “real” ingredients. This is one of my favorite Christmas cookie recipes I made last year.

4. Move: It’s so easy to fill your schedule with fun festivities, but when I schedule in time to exercise it ensures I don’t slack in this department. Moving releases serotonin and has been proven to help remedy “the blues.” It’s also a great way to catch up with friends and family from out of town…. enjoy a walk together, go on a hike, take them to your favorite workout class…. kill two birds with one stone and then head to a delish workout after.

5. Manage Stressors: As I mentioned above, with all the holiday activities and get togethers, sometimes it can get overwhelming and stressful (especially if you’re hosting dinner…  or family members don’t get along). I chatted about managing stress in this post, and think it’s a great reminder for this season…. take deep breaths, ask for a hug when you need one, prioritize, check things off your list…. You’ll enjoy the season more and people will enjoy being around you more (at least in my case….).

6. Have A Clean Eating Plan: I think it’s so important to indulge in life…. but to balance that out with a “clean” plan when it’s time to get back on track. While the holidays tend to be a marathon of indulging, I try to get back on track at the start of the week (something similar to this meal plan). It’s a simple way to ensure that I don’t go too wild during the holiday season (another chocolate martini please… and yes, there was a season when those were my go-to libation….).

7. Say “NO:” I could chat about this topic for days… but I’ll make it short and sweet for this post. It’s ok to say “No” if you start to feel like you’re overextending yourself this holiday season. It took me a while to realize that I was an extroverted-introvert and that continually saying “yes” to every invitation I received was draining me of my energy… leaving me feeling fatigued and frequently sick. I needed some “alone” and “down” time to recharge myself. All that to say, it’s completely ok to not accept every invitation that finds itself in your inbox, and doing a quick check-in with yourself to see if you’re feeling rundown is a great way to assess whether or not to accept the invite.

8. Sleeeeeep: I probably don’t need to chat about the impact lack of sleep has on your health, but it’s true (I mean, I remember how I felt after being sleep deprived with the arrival of little miss). I wrote a post on sleep and while it doesn’t work all the time, it helps the majority.

9. Essential Oils: Several people requested a few “natural” ways to stay healthy during the holidays and I’ve had some success with essential oils. When I was sick last week, I used the blend “breathe” on my chest and around my nose and it drastically helped open my nasal passage (I was able to breathe with ease). TJ also had a horrible ear infection when we returned from Hawaii (woke up in the middle of the night in pain), and although he needed an antibiotic to treat it, in the middle of the night he used a blend of On Guard, Peppermint, Lavender, and olive oil and the pain subsided to the point that he could sleep through the night.

I reached out to my girl Kate who knows all about oils and she recommended the following:

On Guard: 1 drop in hot water or tea will help increase immunity… also take it at the beginning of a cold to minimize symptoms + duration.
Peppermint: A great option in tea to help with sore throats
A Blend: A drop of peppermint and a drop of lemon or orange is a great energizing mix to help you get through all the holiday shopping!

That’s it! Would love to know if you have any to add…..

(Leggings, Tank, Necklace)


Thanksgiving Day Look 1 || Casual In Boots (4 Best Boots For The Day)

Thanksgiving has changed for me over the years. When I was younger, all my cousins came into town for the week. We’d head to Disneyland, see movies, and do the whole Black Friday thing. As we all got older, and schedules became more complicated, Thanksgiving was spent with local family… a short drive away. In college, there was the occasional roommate who joined us, and now that my sister and I are both married, there is a blending of families: Turkey Bowls, Turkey Trots, Thanksgiving lunches, and Thanksgiving dinners. And, with all the different festivities of the actual day, having a versatile outfit makes shifting between events a cinch…..

My three requirements for the day are that my pants must always be stretchy…. my shirt loose…. and my feet comfortable. And while this makes me sound like a complete slob, there is an art to making the aforementioned requirements look seemingly pulled together. So, this week, I will be sharing three different Thanksgiving Day looks… all fitting my requirements… and all hopefully fitting the attire of your day… casual, dressy casual, or outright comfortable.

Today’s look is for the casual Thanksgiving day…. the one where you want to look pulled together until your day of visiting multiple families, or having a house full of people,  is over and it’s reasonably acceptable to change (or, in my case, until it’s time to turn on Christmas Vacation). For that type of Thanksgiving I always like to have a comfortable shoe option… since I’ll likely be on my feet for most of the day (playing with kiddos, helping cook, etc…)….. and more often than not turn to some form of boots to get me through the day. Nordstrom carries some of my favorite, well priced, boot brands… Sole Society, Hunter, Franco Sarto, and Vince Camuto. So today, I’ll be sharing with you the four booties perfect for Turkey Day… and any day after that…..

1. Over The Knee Boots: One of the easiest ways to dress up any outfit, toss on a pair of over the knee boots. And while they tend to dress things up a bit, what you pair them with determines how much. A slouchy oversized sweater +jeans keeps things on the more casual side… while a pair of velvet leggings + a blouse make it a bit fancier. I love this pair for a day of multiple Thanksgivings. They’re super comfortable, the perfect heel height… and if you’re like me and have a tornado tagging along with you, a pair you can easily run around in. I also own this flat over the knee boot (invested in them several years ago, budget friendly option here).

2. Bootie: Another perfect option if you’re house hopping, and another one that can be dressed up or down… I love pairing them with a frayed hem jean. One of my favorite pairs is this Sole Society bootie (which I own in navy)… extremely comfortable + I love the cut at the ankle. This white studded pair + this studded bootie in black would both be super cute options if you were wanting to dress it up a bit. This taupe bootie is also a great option, at a good price point.

3. Rain Boots: Every year I wish for rain on Thanksgiving… just makes the day that much cozier. So, if you have several houses to go to in the rain, and can’t stay inside all day, my favorite comfortable and stylish rain boots are these Hunter boots (I own in black and green) as well as this bootie option (which I own in black, but comes in several colors). Both will keep your toes dry, and look super cute with jeans, leggings, cute sweater, and warm coat.

4. The Cozy Boot: When you’re going super casual for your day of feasting, this is my favorite option…. coziness prevails. This short lined boot has been my favorite for the past two seasons and I love wearing it with jeans and a cozy cardigan. It’s pretty much like wearing slippers all day…

(Outfit Details || Boots (come in black too, runs TTS) | Sweater (comes in several colors, wearing XXS) also think this cable knit option would be cute | Jeans | Earrings | Bag | Sunglasses)

Thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post. 


Weekend Recap || Contention While Contending

(Bubbles with the sista…..)

We spent this past weekend celebrating my grandmother’s 90th birthday… family came in from out of town, and we spent time catching up, remembering old times, and watching a new generation of kiddos play together in the same backyard my cousin’s and I spent countless hours growing up. And, as a new generation took our place… and our former juice cups were filled with livelier libations… we got to asking Gram what her advice to all of us would be. While I can’t remember the exact sentiments, the gist of it was to take each day as it comes + to love those around you… since life is short, make the most of the time you have…..

Of course, that got me thinking. As of late, I’ve felt this huge need to “be better.” That what I’ve accomplished isn’t enough… almost an insatiable drive without relishing in the positives, or the successes thus far. With my grandma’s words loud in my head, I had to question why I put so much pressure on myself, instead of relishing in accomplishments and enjoying the journey. Then I remembered a conversation I had with one of my best girlfriends about a year ago… as we sat chatting about dreams and goals… and that aforementioned insatiable drive to “do better.” She mentioned that she tries to come from a place of “contention while contending….”

Whenever I have the feelings of not living up to my own standards, or feeling as if I’m not “doing enough,” I come back to those words… as well as the advice of my grandmother. I remind myself that it’s so important to be content and happy with where I am, all while working towards my goals. Enjoying the adventure of life, including ups and downs….

So, as we enter this week ahead, I do so with the intention of being content while contending. I hope you all have a good one! xx

(Walking into the weekend with this little lady…. her dress, her shoes, my cardigan, booties, tee)

(Comfy neutrals for a day of birthday prepping…. pullover, scarf)

(Back to our spin, avocado toast date mornings…. pullover (on sale), leggings)

(A full day celebrating grandma’s (or great grandma’s) 90th birthday with family….)

(Champagne sipping knit (wearing it backwards))

(Fireside hangin’)

(After a looooong night of minimal sleep, we moved a littles lower Sunday morning…. Harper’s onesie, My joggers)

 I had a slight cold at the end of last week, so I cut my workouts short…. looking forward to getting back into the swing of things this week. Hoping to try my hand at a healthy pumpkin muffin recipe… but in the meantime will likely make a batch of my favorite paleo pumpkin bars (SO good).

We’re heading to Park City this Thursday and I’m so excited. I’m bringing along this cozy fuzzy cardigan, teddy bear jacket, faux fur vest, floral embroidered hoodie, cozy pullover, waffle knit sweater, velvet leggings (that fit like a dream), faux wrap peplum top for a nice dinner (inside….), reversible faux fur jacket (that I hosted a giveaway for last year), and my favorite down faux fur hooded jacket (it’s supposed to be 29 degrees on Friday!).

I’ll also be bringing a lot of cool weather accessories, including all my favorite beanies…. this knit oatmeal pom beanie, red pom beanie, and grey pom beanie, along with this stripe one (a few other cute stripe beanies). Also loving faux fur fingerless gloves (easier than full mittens!) especially this pair and this pink option. I also plan on bringing my favorite free people scarves, as well as this fringe woven scarf (that comes in tons of different colors).

As far as shoes go, I’m bringing my black hunter boots (I also got Harper these….), fur ugg booties (my favorites from last year), and I’m loving the Sorel boots (or these faux fur hiker boots).

I also found two adorable bralettes this past weekend… at excellent price points…. this lacey black option and this longline bralette are both so pretty.


Motherhood Update || 23 Months

I finished yesterday’s blog post before TJ actually arrived home with my “new” phone. It appears we had a miscommunication (I mean, that never happens between couples, right???)… after fiddling with my phone for a little while and getting all my apps back, I asked him where the old phone was so we could try and get it turned on to back-up + restore 2 years worth of memories. He looked at me quizzically and said, “Um, it’s at the store. They’re destroying it since they gave us a new one.” Cue tantrum. My mind went through the past two years and all the memories that had seemingly disappeared with a simple technology glitch (and, let’s be honest, negligence on my behalf for not backing it up… or purchasing three dollars worth of extra cloud space….). Tears started to run down my face…. Harper’s birth, those precious few days right after she was born…. our first trip together as a family of three… Hawaii trips…. her first Christmas… her first birthday…. and then I fast forwarded to years later and her questioning me why she didn’t have more photos from her childhood (I know, I’m catastrophizing slightly….)….

I ended up calling Apple, and to make a very long 5 hour afternoon spent at the store short, I have my memories back. Yet, as I sat there, with nothing else to do but think (it’s amazing what can happen when you can’t use your phone) I started to think about why this was so important to me. They’re just photos. Yet, they’re so much more than that. Sometimes I look at my little girl and realize just how much time has passed, yet it feels like yesterday I went into labor. It’s hard to really remember those first few weeks… between the exhaustion + overwhelming sense of everything being new… and that’s where the photos come into play. Simply looking at them can bring me back to those moments (both good + bad). Seeing the photo of her on my chest for the first time brings back that same mixture of feelings I felt… so full of love for my little girl, yet fearful of my abilities all at the same time. And I know the years will fly by so quickly, and one day the furry of these hectic days will pass, and these images will be what I have to remind me of the feelings (all of them, no matter what they are) and memories we all made together….

And so, had this whole thing with the phone not have happened, I’m sure this post would have taken a different perspective… but it was a great reminder (and probably 5 people at the apple store also reminded me of this) to cherish those memories and keep them safe (or, in my case… back that it up!)…..

(Leather leggings, Fur Vest, My tee, Harper’s Vest)

The Most Challenging/Most Rewarding: I lumped these two categories together this month because for me, they’re one in the same. One of the most rewarding things for me, as Harper’s mom, is to see her budding independence… her preferences maturing… and her wanting to have a say in her life. It means she feels comfortable expressing herself… and her needs… which is something I always want her to feel as she grows. Yet, when it’s time to go and she can’t decide which pair of shoes she wants to put on… it can be a little crazy making (but then again, I wonder where she gets that from… I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree)…. Or, maybe a better example is how she likes to choose where she gets her diaper changed. She used to refuse to let me change her diaper, so I learned to give her the choice. I have to change her diaper, but she can choose where. We’ve chosen the closet…. her tipi…. the kitchen floor… and she tried to get me to do it in a chair, but I had to veto that one since there simply wasn’t enough room. Through the challenges, I’ve learned that choosing my battles is essential. Standing up on the kitchen table, not an option, too dangerous. Where I change your diaper, totally negotiable. I guess that’s what parenthood is… striking the balance and figuring out which situations are worthy of the battle.

(My anorak, Jeans, Thermal, Booties, Harper’s Jacket, Dress, Jeggings, Shoes)

Harper’s Favorite Things: Hands down, her two number one (if that makes sense) things right now are books (she just wants us to “reeeee” to her) and Goldie + Bear (the TV show). And while she doesn’t watch much TV (just when I need to get ready) there is something about that show that makes her laugh and smile (I like it too since Goldie is always problem solving and demonstrating how to be kind)…. and her favorite books are anything to do with animals (she has a taken a real liking to frogs as of late). She loves the moon and looks for it every time we are outside…. and jumping on the bed has become her favorite athletic activity. I love seeing how her likes change over time. It always leaves TJ and me guessing as to the type of little girl she is going to grow up to be….

The other day TJ asked “Does she ever just walk? I feel like she is always running….” and then we of course thought that maybe she’ll be a runner when she grows up… and then she goes and kicks a ball and we think she’ll be a soccer player…. but then she goes and uses sidewalk chalk and we think an artist…. so, I guess we pretty much think she can be anything……

(Joggers, Hoodie, Harper’s Joggers, Sweatshirt)

Sleeping, Eating, Wellness: I was pretty certain we were going to have some issues with the time change, but Harper somehow managed it amazingly well and ended up sleeping pretty late… then the next day she came down with a cough, so I think she might not have been feeling well (but TJ and I will always take the extra sleep!). For her cough, the doctor recommended honey… so be picked up some Zarbee’s Honey for her cough and it appears to have helped really well. We also used this humidifier in her room. We spent the past few days just hanging out so that she could get better… and it’s been nice. I feel like life with a toddler is so frequently spent on the go, that just hanging out has been a welcome change.

She goes between wanting to sit in her high chair, and a “big girl” chair to eat… and how successfully she eats in each is different (the former gets better results….). I’ve been sharing a few of her meals on instastories, but if that is something you want an entire post dedicated to, let me know!

(Stripe Tee)

Relationships: I came across this article yesterday and it gave me a few good tears and made me think of all my old girlfriends whose relationships mean so much to me. And since becoming a mom it’s been the biggest challenge for me…. I love my newer friends, but there is something about the bond with my older ones that is just unmatchable (is that a word??). I guess it’s kind of like the song, “Make new friends, but keep the old, one is silver and the others gold….”  I hope to instill within Harper the power of female friendships. That when you find the right friends, it’s as if they are an extension of your family. It’s something I hope to model for her, and a bond that I hope she can witness.

I continue to be forever grateful for having TJ to do this parenthood journey with. Do we argue at times… duh. Do we not agree about things. Who can possibly agree all the time? But do we work well as a team and support one another? Yes (although, in an argument we both might disagree….). And continuing to invest in our marriage with date nights and days makes us a stronger couple, and a happy couple makes for a happy home for Harper.

Wish us luck in this coming month!


Fall Style || Dressing Up Down…. + Listening To Warning Signs

For the past two days I’ve been dealing with iPhone problems…. at first, my phone was just moving real slow…. then the photos I was taking were blurry… then, around dinner, my phone just froze. I acted like a 2 year old and threw a mini tantrum (I’ve been hanging out with little miss too much I guess….) …. and TJ spent about an hour trying to figure out how to fix it. Turns out I needed to do the new software update… the one that makes “I” look like some weird character. So, we did that, and my phone started working again….. No need for any more two year old tantrums….

Oh, but wait. I woke up to my phone reminding me that it hadn’t been backed up in 37 weeks (yes, you read that right, weeks, not days). I thought to myself, “Oh well, it’s working fine now.” Such a responsible thought for someone who depends on technology for their job 90% of the time. Fast forward a few hours. It’s noon. My phone is no longer working. I call Apple “support.” After speaking with a “technician” my phone is permanently in restore mode and no longer working. Annnnd, to make a long story short, I have a new phone, with a restore from 37 weeks ago. Meaning, all photos from February until now are missing. Moral of the story: Heed The Warnings.

I guess that moral goes for everything in life. Warning signs for anything. Fatigue… get some rest… Hunger…. eat… A gut feeling…. listen to it… A relationship that’s toxic… get out…. An odd looking mole… get it checked.  Or, you might end up like my tragic iPhone…. set back entirely too far.

Ok, enough of the sob story. Let’s chat lace… and coziness. Maybe two of my favorite things combined into one sorta dressed up, sorta dressed down look. I’ve had every single piece I’m wearing for a little while now, and decided to blend them all together for a look I’d wear every single day. It’s casual enough to play with little miss (likely an inside activity… not sure how the lace would go over at the park….) and then do something adult-like immediately after.  And these boots, well, they’re a favorite from last year (found them re-stocked at a fraction of the price!) and so comfortable for just about anything.

A few other lace camis that I am currently loving included this deep v bandeau cami (bought it in two colors last year), rust colored silk cami (more on the splurge side, but her camis are like butter), and this lace trim option (that I featured here… such a great price).

(Outfit Details || Jacket (in stock) | Cami (also available in red) | Jeans | Booties (such a great price) | Sunglasses | Long Necklace | Short Necklace | Similar Bag)