Oahu Recap + A Few Tips For Traveling With A Baby

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

When we were trying to decide where to go for TJ’s birthday, we threw out a few ideas. Cabo was on the top of it for a while, but we threw it out the window when we started to think about taking a baby down there. We eventually decided that a return trip to Hawaii would be the best option. The summer months had been busy, and we were looking for a place where we could disconnect, reconnect, and enjoy a little relaxation. Having been to Kauai at the beginning of the summer (recap here), and having rather inclement weather, we were hoping for sunny skies, lots of pool + ocean time, and mai tais at sunset. All of which we happily enjoyed.

What we weren’t expecting, was that little miss would have a harder time adjusting than the previous trip. The first morning was to be expected… and she greeted us at 4:30am, ready to conquer the day. We made light of the situation, and figured that, since we were up, we might as well catch a sunrise. Yet, as the days moved on we continued to have rough evenings. She was teething, not napping, and having difficulties sleeping at night. TJ and I had two options. We could be frustrated or roll with the situation  (we chose the latter)…

I’ve been asked so many times for travel advice when bringing a baby in tow. My biggest advice is to be flexible and adjust your expectations. If you can do those two things, you’ll have a great time. What do I mean? Well, before little miss started joining us on our adventures, TJ and I would do whatever we wanted… sleep in, go on long hikes, make late dinner reservations, stay up until whatever hour we wanted… you get the drift. We knew that when we started to bring Harper, that would all go out the window…. and we were okay with that. When we go on trips, we know that we will still be on a schedule, and that we will need to stick to her usual bedtime. So, instead, we opt for fun breakfasts + lunches, and focus much of our attention on daytime activities. Given that, I thought I would share some of the highlights from this trip, as well as some of my top tips for traveling with a little one (you can see my first travel advice post here).

1. Flexibility, Lower Expectations: Please, I beg you, do not go into the trip expecting to do everything that you want, when you want,  and seamlessly. You. Will. Be. Disappointed. Instead, try to be flexible. Example?  I am big on having Harper nap in her crib, yet, when I realized she was not having it, we decided to take a day trip to The North Shore. We knew she would sleep in the carseat, so it ended up being a spur of the moment win-win situation.

2. When The Baby Goes Down, Have Some Fun: One of the most frequently asked questions I receive is “What do you do when she goes down, where do you put her?” Well… where we put her depends on the floor plan of the room. If there isn’t a hallway where the pack and play can go while we are up, then we place her in the bathroom… it’s nice and dark for her, and we can keep a light on for us. Once she is down, we have fun! If we haven’t eaten yet, we get take out and eat it in the corner of the room… sometimes the lights are out, sometimes they are on (that all depends on where little miss is sleeping). We open a bottle of wine, and just enjoy ourselves. It’s not ideal, but we’ve come to look forward to this time of the night. It’s all about that flexibility and lowering expectations.

3. Traveling On The Plane: The last time I gave tips, Harper wasn’t mobile. She was perfectly content sitting on our laps. Not the case on our trips to Boston or Hawaii. Which makes the flight a little more complicated. The best thing we did was bring our baby carrier. When she started to get feisty, TJ would put it on and walk around with her… sometimes he ended up in the back of the plane chatting with the flight attendants (who graciously gave him a beer….). It seemed to calm her down, and often put her to sleep. If you have a mobile baby, don’t forget this!

4. Schedule: I’ve been asked if I follow Harper’s schedule on vacation. Once again, this comes back to point #1. I follow it, but I am flexible… I mean, who wants to sit in the room the entire vacation? I know that her afternoon nap is the most important, so we typically have her take the morning nap while we are out and about exploring. It’s worked for us on the past few trips, so I imagine we will continue if we go anywhere soon.

I hope these tips help! We have always loved traveling, and promised ourselves we wouldn’t stop when Harper was born. It’s not always easy (actually, it’s not easy), but it’s worth it…. Now onto the recap (you can find all outfit details at the end of this post)…

mai tai moana surfrider, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

diamond head sunset, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences {We landed in enough time to enjoy a half day. Once we got situated, we headed down to the Moana Surfrider Banyan Bar (we stayed there). It is situated right on the water, and they have the best Mai Tais (no joke). After, we headed over to Rum Fire to watch the sunset, listen to some music, and eat an early dinner.}

sandy beach, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

sandy beach sunrise, itsy bitsy indulgences

arvo oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

arvo oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

arvo oahu, itsy bitsy indulgenes

arvo oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

arvo oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

arvo oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

arvo oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences {The morning Harper decided to wake us up at 4:30am was actually TJ’s birthday. So, we headed to Sandy Beach, located on the East side of the island, to catch the sunrise. It was absolutely spectacular. After, we headed to Arvo for some delicious toast. It’s the cutest spot, and a must see if you’re visiting.}

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences {After, we headed back to the hotel for some ocean and pool time with our little fish. Each evening we enjoyed what we playfully called Mai Tai Time (MTT)… which was around 5pm. We would watch the sunset, and stay a few minutes after before heading up to get Harper ready for bed. This night we enjoyed take out from Sansei Sushi (so so good).}

egghead oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

egghead oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

egghead oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

egghead oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences {The next morning we headed to Egghead Cafe. We walked there for our morning workout, and Harper napped on the walk back. This place has a robust menu… and we just had to order the pancake sampler. I mean, how do you not??}

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences {Most of our afternoons were spent in a little cabana we rented. It made having Harper at the pool with us easier. We didn’t have to worry about the sun, since it was shaded, and she was able to crawl around on the cushions… it was also an excellent spot for her to nap on my chest. We enjoyed most of our sunset views from this spot too.}

diamond head acai bowl, itsy bitsy indulgences

north shore, itsy bitsy indulgences

north shore, itsy bitsy indulgences

north shore tacos, itsy bitsy indulgences

moana surfrider, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences {After a particularly rough night of sleep (I believe we had an 11pm wake up with her screaming), we decided to grab an acai bowl at Diamond Head Cove Health Bar… and then made a spontaneous choice to head to North Shore for the day. We figured that Harper could sleep in the car, and we could enjoy seeing a different part of the island. The tacos + quesadilla at North Shore Tacos were delicious. If we had spent a little more time there, we would have checked out all the shrimp food trucks they have (#NextTime). This side of the island is absolutely gorgeous, and so different than Waikiki. We couldn’t have been happier we made this choice!}

moana surfrider, itsy bitsy indulgences

heavenly oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

heavenly, itsy bitsy indulgences

heavenly oahu, itsy bitsy indulgences

diamond head at sunset, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences

oahu recap, itsy bitsy indulgences {On our last full day, we headed to Heavenly for breakfast. We were looking for something a little healthier, and they had some good options. After, we parked ourselves in the little cabana, and stayed there until well after Mai Tai Time. After Harper went down for the evening, we enjoyed take out from the most delicious Thai spot- Siam Square.}

If you’re heading to Oahu baby-less, check out this post I did when TJ and I went several years ago.


{Outfit Details || Charcoal Peplum Tank | Denim Shorts | Stripe Coverup | Slouchy Off The Shoulder Sweater | Tan + Black Straw Hat}


Motto Leggings + Oversized Poncho: The 90’s Elevated

motto leggings, fall outfit, itsy bitsy indulgences

A few weeks ago, I was looking back on old photos. There have been a lot of changes in our family over the past year, all good, that brought about some of that nostalgia within me… namely, the birth of Harper. As I moved out of the “baby book” era, and into the later years, I couldn’t help but laugh…. the crimped hair, in your face hair bows, and leggings…. stirrup to be exact… paired with oversized tees abounded everywhere….

Then, I looked at these photos. Hmmmmmmm…..

Leggings. Check.
Oversized Top. Check.

Buuuut, in my defense, this is a more refined leggings + oversized top combo than my eight year old self would have worn (at least that’s what I am telling myself). In all fairness though… it was comfortable then, and it’s certainly still comfortable today. I stumbled across these leggings when I was working on this post… and decided that I wanted to try them out. When I put them on, I was sold. They are pretty much a perfect pant, IMO. They combine style + comfort… and can be dressed up, or down. I opted to pair them with my favorite flats + poncho for an evening of… you guessed it… tacos. To dress them down, I would simply pair them with my favorite kicks, oversized thermal top, denim jacket, and baseball cap. Any piece that can be worn more than one way receives a passing grade in my book.

I also think that flats are the perfect alternative to sneakers… for those days when you just want to dress it up a tad more. A few great options for fall include these grometted loafers, lace up flats (that come in multiple colors), and these traditional pointy toe loafers. Ponchos are also an excellent layering option for the up and down fall temps. I chose to wear mine without any additional layers, but tossing a thermal underneath would make it a cozy option for a chilly fall day. I think this black fringe option and this simple grey poncho are also gorgeous.

I can’t help but wonder if Harper will look at all these photos someday and have her own spin on the look?? I mean… trends all recycle themselves….


{Outfit Details || Poncho Sweater (c/o) | Leggings (so. comfortable. 3 colors. excellent price. i’m wearing an XS.) | Flats (less expensive option here) | Sunglasses | Bag}

motto leggings, itsy bitsy indulgences

motto leggings, itsy bitsy indulgences


chunky fall poncho, itsy bitsy indulgences

motto leggings, itsy bitsy indulgences

chunky knit poncho, itsy bitsy indulgences

motto leggings, rockstud flats, itsy bitsy indulgences

cozy knot poncho, itsy bitsy indulgences

cozy knit poncho, itsy bitsy indulgences

cozy knit poncho, itsy bitsy indulgences

knit poncho, itsy bitsy indulgences

causal fall outfit, itsy bitsy indulgences


Post Vacation Detox Meal Plan

post vacation detox meal plan, itsy bitsy indulgences

I know I’ve mentioned it several times before, but our past few vacations (or weeks…) have been utterly indulgent. A few examples: ahi nachos (I don’t even eat dairy….), Reese’s  Pieces cheesecake (again…. I don’t eat dairy), sweet potato tempura (I tried to justify that one with the fact that it was a sweet potato….), potato pizza (there’s that dairy again…)… and let’s not even touch on the libations that were consumed. It’s not something I do often, so I decided to just enjoy myself and get back on track when we returned home. Towards the end of the trip though, it started to not taste so good, and I was definitely craving some vegetables and fruit.

So, when we returned home, that’s just what I did. I made a big ol’ trip to Whole Foods + Trader Joes’ and followed my normal grocery list pretty closely. It felt so good to get back on track… but it also felt equally as good to throw caution to the wind for a little while. I guess that’s what this blog is all about… finding ways to create balance and to fully live, and enjoy, all of life.


Breakfast: 2 organic eggs (I like mine runny), on top of a bed of arugula + spinach, with half of an avocado. I topped it with a little himalayan sea salt, pepper, + red pepper flakes.
Snack: Kombucha (trilogy flavor has been my favorite lately, over ice), 1 small apple
Lunch: Chicken breast with roasted carrots + brocollini
Snack: Smoothie
Dinner: Grilled Salmon (used sea salt, pepper, + dill with a little lemon to season), asparagus, cauliflower rice with herbs.
Dessert: 3 cups of popcorn

Workout: Pure Barre Mommy-Baby Class


Breakfast: My favorite steel cut oats (from Trader Joe’s). I bring 1 1/4 cup of water to a boil, with collagen peptides in the water, and then add 3/4 cup oats. Once cooked I top with cinnamon, 1/2 banana, 1/4 perfect bar
Snack: Kombucha, some granola
Lunch: 2 organic chicken sausages on top of spaghetti squash (I mixed the squash with some himalayan sea salt, pepper, + a little olive oil) with 1 cup spinach and sliced mini heirloom tomatoes (pictured above).
Snack: 1 cup of carrots + a bunch of red grapes
Dinner: Mexican Night (my favorite night!!): sautéed shrimp with bell peppers + onions. I make a Mexican cauliflower rice (you can mix a can of diced tomatoes + diced chili verde peppers to season the rice) + top with guacamole + salsa verde.
Dessert: We got Pressed Freeze (I just can’t resist)

Workout: Spin Bike + Weights


Breakfast: I made overnight oats for TJ + I. I put 1/2 cup steel cut oats in a mason jar. I then added 1 cup of unsweetened vanilla cashew milk, cinnamon, and roasted butternut squash. I then shook it all together and placed it in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning I topped it with 1/2 a banana and added some of my favorite perfect bar pieces.
Snack: Kombucha, remainder of my perfect bar
Lunch: 3 organic eggs (I was haaangry…), 1 small sweet potato, cut into cubes + roasted with shaved brussel sprouts. Once finished roasting, I placed eggs on top of roasted veggies. So. Good.
Snack: apple with peanut butter
Dinner: Crockpot shredded chicken: 1 can salsa verde with chopped bell peppers + onions. Place 4lbs chicken in the crockpot, and then place all veggies + salsa on top. I also added pink himalayan sea salt, pepper, garlic, and chili powder. I placed on low for 4 hours. Served with the Mexican cauliflower rice + guacamole.
Dessert: Popcorn

Workout: 45 minute walk


Breakfast: Chia Seed Pudding (my recipe)
Snack: Kombucha, some granola
Lunch: Roasted brussel sprouts + sweet potato with organic turkey slices.
Snack: Smoothie: 1 frozen banana, 1/4 avocado, 1 cup spinach, 1/2 cup frozen blueberries, 1/2 scoop vital proteins chocolate, 3/4 cup almond milk, cinnamon. Blend. So. Good.
Dinner: Chinese Food Night: I used a spaghetti squash and cooked it, scraped out the squash, and then sautéed it in a frying pan with a little sesame oil + garlic. Then I tossed in a cole slaw mix (for the cabbage + carrot mixture) and some water chestnuts. I then threw in tamari sauce (GF soy sauce) to my liking. In a separate pan I sautéed the shrimp. When both were finished I tossed together. It was a first time trying this and it was a hit.
Dessert: 1 Justin’s Peanut Butter Mini Cup

Workout: Slept through my alarm, so had to cut it short. 30 minute run. After Harper had been fed, I picked up some of the weights I had at home and did some lunges and squats.


Breakfast: Same as Tuesday… my steel cut oats
Snack: Kombucha, and the rest of my perfect bar.
Lunch: Ate out with my mom… went to my favorite vegan spot Freesoul Cafe (clearly, I am not vegan…) and had butternut squash soup with a side salad packed with veggies.
Snack: Smoothie from Thursday
Dinner: Poke Bowls. I opted for 1 small scoop of rice and the rest salad…. edamame, green onions, double seaweed salad, + avocado.
Dessert: Big ol’ bowl of popcorn + wine

Workout: Favorite Yoga Video 

Sometimes I find that the easiest way to motivated myself to get up and out after a little break is with some new gear. I am currently loving this zip up jacket and this pullover, as they both have the perfect neckline to keep you warm. This oversized jersey tee is a great option to toss on after your workout if you plan on running errands, or heading out to breakfast/lunch (a healthy one, right??!). The cutout details on this top make it great as a multi-functional piece. I also think this long sleeve pull over is great for any workout, and I wear these high waisted mesh insert leggings all the time.


Getting Out Of A Rut: Striped Tees + Casual Cardigans

fall layers, itsy bitsy indulgences

After having returned from vacation last week, I was in a “blah” mood (I’m fully aware this word is not in the English dictionary… it’s just sometimes the best choice to describe how I’m feeling). As the week began to move by, I couldn’t put my finger on exactly what it was. I thought that maybe it had something to do with the fact that we had just returned from a few days of being checked out of reality…. or, that maybe it was because I had left too many things for the last minute and was feeling a little uninspired. Yet, on the second day of sleeping through my alarm (that time change hit me hard….), I decided that enough was enough. I got up and out, laced up my running shoes, and hit the pavement for a refreshing morning run…

On my run, I decided that it was time for something different. Nothing earth shattering, but that I needed to change things up a bit. As much as I love routine, it was starting to turn into a rut… and I don’t just mean the everyday activities. For me, this can range from eating the same things on a daily basis (something I’ve worked on over the past couple of years), going through the same workout series, or the same beauty regime….

Having a hair appointment later that day, I decided to do something about this feeling and went dark. I was nervous to take out the baylage I had so diligently kept up for the past several years, but decided now was as good a time as ever. When it was finished, I felt refreshed. Rejuvenated. And that’s the thing about getting out of a “blah” mood… sometimes all it takes are a few tweaks here and there….

All that being said, I haven’t yet tired of striped tees as the perfect layering piece. Toss them over a tank, or under a cardigan (like I did here)… or simply by themselves with a cute pair of jeans and leopard loafers or booties… and you’ve got yourself an ensemble that took less than 10 minutes to put together.

A few of my favorite striped tees include this turtleneck option, a slouchy boatneck shape for a casual and relaxed feel, and a two toned stipe version for a different look.


{Outfit Details || Cardigan (c/0) | Tee (wearing XS, almost sold out) | Jeans (distressing DIY) | Booties (so comfortable, TTS) | Pendant Necklace | Sunglasses}

striped top for layering, itsy bitsy indulgences

striped top for layering, itsy bitsy indulgences

gold accessories, itsy bitsy indulgences

fall booties, itsy bitsy indulgences

striped layering top, itsy bitsy indulgences

fall layering outfit, itsy bitsy indulgences


fall layering, itsy bitsy indulgences

lila p sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

fall layering with lila p, itsy bitsy indulgences


Weekend Recap

haven, itsy bitsy indulgences{Date night libations}

For some reason, the week after vacation always seems to be crazy (it’s as if life is saying “relaxation is officially over”)…. and this past week did not disappoint. Needless to say, the weekend was welcomed with a nice glass of wine, and the couch, on Friday night….

One of the events I looked forward to most all week was our first date night in 9 months. Over the past several weeks, we’ve been working diligently with Harper to take a bottle…. and it paid off. It felt as if the door to freedom had been opened (this isn’t an exaggeration if you’ve followed along on my motherhood updates).  When my sister arrived to take over our parenting duties for a few hours, we headed out to one of our old favorite spots and enjoyed a libation (or two) on the patio. It was like old times…. and we joked that we were #ParentsGoneWild. Yet, these parents can’t hang like they used to…. so we headed home early, grabbed some take-out Thai food (is there really anything better than take-out Thai??), and watched the end of the baseball playoffs from the comfort of our couch + a pair of stretchy pants.

That’s the funny thing. As much fun as we had in our pre-parental responsibility days, we wouldn’t trade what we have now for those wilder days. There is something to be said for being comfortable with where you are in life. With that, my intention for this week is just that: to be comfortable with where I currently am. I hope you all have a good one!!

orange farmers market, itsy bitsy indulgences {Picked up a bunch of delicious fruits + veggies at the farmer’s market}

tanaka farms pumpkin patch, itsy bitsy indulgences

tanaka farms pumpkin patch, itsy bitsy indulgences

tanaka farm pumpkin patch, itsy bitsy indulgences

tanaka farms pumpkin patch, itsy bitsy indulgences {We spent Sunday at Tanaka Farms Pumpkin Patch. They have the cutest petting zoo (hence the sheep), a tractor ride, corn maze, and so many pumpkins to choose from. I went there last year and was so excited to take Harper this year. It was a family affair and such a fun first for all of us!}


After the gluttony of the past several weeks, if felt so nice to get back into our clean eating routine. I followed this grocery store list (with a few new additions) and did a few of these workout videos (in addition to heading to the gym).

There was a lot of relaxation this weekend… which meant I was able to do some on-line pursuing. I noticed that one of my favorite brands had some new items that I think are just gorgeous. I am particularly loving this elbow sleeve chunky knit and this high neck bell sleeve knit. They also released this burgundy bomber jacket and it’s pretty fab. This brand makes items that are of goof quality at a reasonable price point…. nothing to argue with there, right? I also discovered a new brand which appears similar… excellent price point and good quality. The items that caught my eye include this simple mocha colored lightweight pullover, marigold open front cardigan (one of my favorite colors for fall), and this high low chunky knit.

I’m also eyeing a few new activewear pieces. I love finding pieces that can easily transition from a workout to running errands or brunch. I love this open front cardigan (I recently purchased it and it is so soft!). This open back tank is super cute option, this open back pullover looks uber cozy, these rose colored leggings are the cutest.

If you’re like me and love spending my Friday evenings, after a long week, on the couch with some tunes, good company, and a libation, then you’ll want to check out these comfy pieces. I think this fringe cardigan, paired with these fuzzy shorts, and this thermal top would be the ultimate Friday evening get-up. If you’re looking for a matching set, I think this striped set is super cute.

TJ and I are considering a one night getaway towards the end of November. We haven’t decided on where, I just know I want go somewhere where the temps will be cool. That being said, I love this leather jacket with a faux fur collar (such a great price too!), this knit pom pom beanie, this double layer motto jacket, and this pink + faux fur puffer vest. I love wearing knits under vests…. I think it is one of the most perfect layering combinations.

Annnnd, a few basic tops and tees I’m loving include this beautiful blush colored bell sleeve option, this distressed long sleeved striped tee, and this black v-neck oversized top.

Oh, and these black faux leather leggings for little miss…. too. cute.


Our Morning Routine With Little Miss

I wrote this review/blog post while participating in the Kids II blogger Campaign and received monetary compensation and/or free products to facilitate my review.bright starts activity gym, itsy bitsy indulgences

As I’ve mentioned before… multiple times… I tend to be a fairly routine individual (ok… “tend” + “fairly” are probably putting it lightly….). So, when I became a mom, I knew that having some sort of schedule and structure would make the transition a little easier. It’s something that, over the past 9 months, has worked so well for our little family. One of my favorite parts of our daily routine includes the morning hours…. right after Harper awakens from a long night of sleep (I thank God for this everyday!!). I am frequently asked what our schedule looks like, so I thought I would share it with you today.

5:30am: I wake up. I usually wish I could hit the snooze button a few times (or just throw my alarm across the room), but instead I hop out of bed, toss on my workout clothes, and get to the gym.

5:45-6:30am: Work-out

6:30am-7:30am: This is where I make myself breakfast, check my e-mails, and then get in a very quick shower… since Harper tends to wake up anywhere between 7-7:30am… and little miss wakes up haaaangry.

7:30am-8am: Mealtime. I give Harper her bottle and then she eats solid foods. Depending on TJ’s work schedule he can sometimes help out here… which allows me a little extra time to get myself ready for the day.

8:00-9:30am: This is playtime… and while 1.5 hours doesn’t look like much… I’m pretty much ready for a nap by the end of it. This is the time when I read and sing with Harper, and she has free playtime. The time where I am able to direct reading and singing has drastically decreased since she has become mobile, but I have enjoyed watching her explore her surroundings. That being said, she frequently moves throughout her room playing with various toys for different amounts of time. Over the past month, she has become particularly fond of this activity gym. There are so many different components to the activity center that it is able to keep her attention for a while. She loves playing inside the “ball pit,” and when she tires of that, I can let down the sides and we often reciprocally play with one another… taking turns rolling the ball in and out of the ball pit. This is one of her favorites parts, and she just giggles and giggles. She’s become quite fond of looking at her reflection in the mirror that hangs on the toy (it’s baby safe!) and she loves playing with the toucan. She’s recently become quite fond of realizing her effect on items…. pushing the toucan results in cute little medleys. She has her favorite stuffed animals and books that she frequently takes inside the gym as well. When she is ready to move on, we often crawl and cruise around the room for a little while…. and it’s around that time when she starts to rub her eyes and becomes a little fussy….

9:30am-10:30am: Down for a nap…. I usually take this time to finish getting ready, work on a blog post, return some e-mails, or catch up with a friend.

10:30am: Harper wakes up and I give her a little bit of milk. Then we head out for the day.

With Harper developing and growing so rapidly, I know that this schedule will change over time… and that her interest in toys will shift as well…. yet, I love that she has been able to grow with the activity gym over the past month and that it adapts to her changing developmental needs. Today I teamed up with Bright Starts to offer one reader an activity gym! See the end of this post for entry details!

**You can find the Bright Starts 5-in-1 You Way Ball Play Pink Activity Gym at Babies R Us. If you are looking for one for your little man, there is a neutral version as well. You can find additional images here.

baby morning routine, itsy bitsy indulgences

baby morning routine, itsy bitsy indulgences

morning routine with bright starts activity gym, itsy bitsy indulgences

morning routine with bright starts, itsy bitsy indulgences


morning routine with bright starts, itsy bitsy indulgences

Giveaway Details: To enter, simply follow @brightstarts + @itsybitsyindulgences on instagram, and enter your instagram handle in the comments below. Winner will be chosen, at random, on 10/18/17 at 12 midnight. Good luck!


My Casual Date Night Essentials

date night essentials, itsy bitsy indulgences

Pre-baby, date nights were a regular weekend occurrence. We’d dress up, head out, and have a fun evening. It was typically nothing too fancy… dinner at a new spot (or an old favorite), a bottle of wine, and good conversation…. typically followed up by a delicious dessert. It’s something we were always committed to, and remain vigilant about even with little miss around… it’s just changed a little. For the past few months we’ve been opting for day dates and enjoying our evenings at home. Let’s face it, sometimes we’re too exhausted to head out for the evening. Yet, now that little miss is taking the bottle with regular frequency, this duo is ready to hit the town (with the babysitter booked for this weekend… well… Aunty volunteered…). One of the things I’m most excited for is getting a little dolled up….

I think there is something special about still getting excited to dress up for your SO. I love to see the reaction on TJ’s face… and he’s always so complimentary. Depending on the season we are in, I have a few go to rules for putting together an outfit (just like I do for my casual weekend look). Below, I’m sharing my fall favorites from Nordstrom for getting a little dressed up and hitting the town.

1. Oversized Sweater: I’ve never been one for baring a lot of skin… I’ve been more of the mindset of leaving a little to the imagination (hey, I’m always honest with you guys!). That being said, when I spotted this auburn colored sweater, I knew it would be perfect for an evening out (or dressed down with some mules and a top knot). I actually initially bought it in the olive color, but exchanged it the day I saw this hue. I love this sweater for so many different reasons… the bell sleeves, the softness, and the way it falls. I recently purchased this sweater in merlot, as well as this sweater with a frayed hem. All of them are incredibly comfortable…. perfect for sipping a little wine with that special someone.

2. Your Best Jeans: Yes, you need a fabulous pair of jeans. A pair that makes you feel like a million bucks. For me, that typically includes a little bit of distressing (shocker, right?) along with some stretch. My absolute favorites include this black pair (I’ve had them for several seasons and each fall I overwear them…) as well as this pair with an amazing amount of stretch (i.e. hugs in all the right places). I also lean towards high-waisted options, like the ones featured today. I prefer how they look with a front tuck and sometimes feel they add length to my short legs. I distressed these on my own.

3. Booties: A few years ago, my answer would have always been heels when it comes to footwear… and while I still love a good pair of heels, I think a fabulous pair of booties is perfect for a casual evening out (if you’re going out out then I recommend these nude heels… and if you’re looking to make an investment this is my go to pair). I saw these calf height booties on-line and thought they were gorgeous. I was nervous as to how comfortable they would be and when I received them I was pleasantly surprised… they were comfortable and beautiful. I think the shaft height is so unique and the tassels add an extra little detail. If you’re looking for a lower heel option, I own these and they are incredibly comfortable and I am particularly fond of the pointy toe. If you’re looking for some fun color options, check out these booties… they come in navy, burgundy, black, and grey (the navy is gorgeous!).

4. Favorite Accessories: As I mentioned here, I always like to add a third piece to every outfit. Here I opted for a cozy wrap scarf. Yet, I think a gorgeous bag, statement earrings, or a statement ring would have paired just as nicely.


{Outfit Details || Sweater (wearing XS, excellent price point, 3 color options) | Jeans (distressed on own)| Booties (2 color options, I sized up 1/2 size… I bought a 7) | Scarf (similar) | Sunglasses | Bag}

oversized bell sleeve sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

oversized cashmere scarf, itsy bitsy indulgences

oversized rust sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

bell sleeved sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

calf booties, itsy bitsy indulgences

bell sleeved sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences


fall date night look, itsy bitsy indulgences

fall bell sleeved sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

fall date night look, itsy bitsy indulgences

Thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post 


My Favorite Items (That I Own) From The ShopBop Friends + Family Sale

shopbop friends and family, itsy bitsy indulgences

Aside from an amazing Nordstrom sale, one of my favorite sales of the season is the ShopBop Friends + Family Sale…. where every item is 25% off. I’ve been shopping there for over 10 years and I have always been satisfied with my purchases… free shipping (free two day shipping if you have Amazon Prime), free returns…. and an unparalleled selection of amazing items. I usually put together a collage of items I am currently eyeing, but I thought that I would share with you the items that are on sale that I currently own and love!

That jumpsuit you see up there is one of my new favorite items. I purchased it for Hawaii and loved that I could easily nurse in it (the open back makes it super easy access) and it is incredibly soft. I plan on wearing it well into fall with a motto jacket and a pair of loafers.

shop bop friends and family, itsy bitsy indulgences

I purchased these mesh insert high waisted leggings for our trip to Ojai. They are incredibly comfortable, flattering, and they’re perfect for a day of errands or a spin class. I own this sports bra (I love the polka dot insert) and love how comfortable it is. I also just purchased this long line cardigan…. I’d had my eye on it for a while and love that it is so soft, chic, and perfect for everyday or post workout.

If you were a fan of this floral dress I shared here, it’s currently part of the sale. I seriously love this dress for fall! Also, the dress I bought for my sister’s engagement party is included… I am obsessed with all the beautiful colors.

My favorite, and softest, flannel top…. pair it with distressed jeans, or layer it over a graphic tank (one of my fav comfy tops) and leggings (one of my favorite high waisted leggings).

shop bop friends and family sale, itsy bitsy indulgences

I wore this white off the shoulder sweater in Hawaii, with my favorite pair of distressed shorts. It’s oversized and I plan on wearing it with jeans and my favorite pair of over the knee boots (these were one of my favorite investments last season).

If you’re looking for a feminine layering tunic, this is one of my all time favorites. I wear it under cardigans… and last year I wore it under my favorite suede jacket.

My platform sneakers are currently on sale too… I wore this white pair all throughout summer and don’t plan on stopping this fall. This grey pair is super comfortable and I love the additional height they give me.

I own this gorgeous bag in white, and I also think it is so cute in the mini size…. perfect for a night out or even a few quick errands. The medium size can fit your wallet, sunglasses, cell phone, and a cosmetics case very comfortably.

I also just recently received this cold shoulder white top and it’s an excellent basic. Great for layering or all by itself. Pair it with these burgundy leggings and you’re ready to go.

My favorite straw tote bag… and it also comes in black which would be an excellent option as we move further into fall and winter.

Annnnd, the items that I currently have sitting in my cart include this black and white drop shoulder striped top (it’s casual!), this mesh insert long sleeve top (that I mentioned in my weekend recap), and this peplum ruffle tee. I think this suede baseball cap is perfect for a casual day (or one when I don’t want to wash my hair….), and this distressed cable knit sweater in rust is gorgeous.


Motherhood Update: 9 Months

motherhood update, itsy bitsy indulgences

While we were in Hawaii last week, in addition to celebrating TJ’s birthday, little miss turned 9 months old. I had great plans on shooting a bunch of photos of her on the beach in a cute outfit… but then, we got a little relaxed and the thought of dressing her up, when all she wanted to do was crawl in the sand, seemed a little too arduous. I figured a bunch of “real life” photos were better than anything posed…. and that they capture the true essence of the month. With that, I give you my honest (maybe too much so) thoughts and reflections from the past month.

General Thoughts + Feelings: I am in absolute disbelief that Harper is now 9 months old. A part of me feels as if time has gone by so quickly…. and another part of me feels as if it has crawled by. Which I guess is how I felt this past month…. a big ball of contradictions. I am excited for her to grow up, but a part of me loves how she is right now. I finally went through her dresser drawers and had two large trash bags filled with clothes that no longer fit her…. like the outfit she wore home from the hospital. I never thought I would be impacted by something like that, but I was, and I had a tear in my eye…. all of this as she was knocking over some of my crystal glasses and I thought to myself, “I can’t wait until this phase is over.” It’s been the theme for the month…. as you will continue to see throughout this post. At times, I don’t feel as if I have the right words to adequately express my experiences…. because I feel as if they change day by day…. one day I feel completely competent, and others I feel as if I still don’t know what I am doing 9 months later. I am sure this is how I will feel throughout my entire motherhood journey….

motherhood update, itsy bitsy indulgences

Sleeping + Feeding: Well…. I consider myself lucky that little miss was sleeping through the night by 3 months…. and that she has always been an excellent napper. Yet for the past two weeks, we seem to have had somewhat of a regression. I am not sure if it has to do with teething (those top ones are giving her quit a problem), all of our traveling (all of us sharing one room….), or just her developing little mind, but naps have gotten shorter…. or she has just refused…. and we have had several middle of the night wake ups that haven’t happened since before she started sleeping through the night. To be honest, it slightly terrifies me. I’ve been researching and chatting with my friends, and I am just trying to take it all in strides. To see it as a minor set back… yet that’s sort of easier said than done when you’re running on minimal sleep. Am I right?

Another internal contradiction: I love having her awake more frequently because then it means that I can be out and about for longer stretches of time…. but less sleep also means less alone time. I am sure we will all fall into a rhythm over the next few weeks (at least I hope!).

Feeding. This has always been my biggest challenge as a mom. Nursing in particular. We’ve done a lot of work in helping Harper warm up to a bottle (this bottle was the key), and she most definitely has. To the point where she was getting one a day, with no resistance, and even her last feeding of the night was occasionally with a bottle. I was elated and thought that I would slowly begin the weening process. Then the top teeth started to cut through and… well… nursing + teeth isn’t fun. I was in a lot of pain (as in, bleeding) and couldn’t nurse as frequently. So, we started giving her the bottle for more feedings, thinking that she was ready to wean a little faster. Nope. It’s another area where we are needing to find some balance. I am likely going to slow the process down, with the hopes of being weaned within a month.

When we made this decision, I felt so emotional. With my nursing challenges, this was not what I was expecting. I felt a sense of relief…. a light at the end of the tunnel. Yet, at the same time I was wrought with guilt. It is still something I am working out on my own, but I know that this is the right decision for me. I saw a quote that said something to the effect of this: I am the only one who can give my child a happy mother. It struck home. At times, I found myself getting frustrated with the nursing demands and knew that I wasn’t at my best…. but when I could sit and bottle feed her, I felt much more at peace…. like a much more present mother.

We are still going strong with solids. I actually love this part with Harper. Lately, I’ve been introducing thicker consistencies and all different types of food. For breakfast I make her this mixture and she loves it. We tried scrambled eggs (still warming to those)…. and when we are out to dinner we often give her bites off of our plate. We enjoy the process of having Harper join us at the dinner table in her high chair… and just last night I made a chicken soup and chopped it in the food processor for her. She went crazy over it…. and it was a great experience having her enjoying the same meal as we were.

I just purchased this book, on baby led weaning and how to create an adventurous eater (i.e. not a picky eater!!). I am looking forward to gaining some new information.

motherhood update, itsy bitsy indulgences

Fitness + Body: So, aside from being completely gluttonous over the past few weeks, I have been feeling much better about my postpartum body. It’s not where I would ideally like to be…. but I am feeling good. I sometimes catch myself making comments to TJ about my dissatisfaction, and then stop. I want to be very cognizant of the messages I send to Harper. I want her to love her body, and herself…. and that starts with me….

That being said, my main goal is to just eat clean + healthy, show her how to enjoy those indulgences in life, and to be more concerned with what’s on the inside (health wise) than what presents on the outside.

I just started a new class called Rock-a-Barre-Baby where I can wear Harper in her baby carrier and take a barre class. My legs were burning and she was giggling. I loved being able to include her in this experience. First, it demonstrates exactly what I want her to see…. strong women… and secondly, it gives her the interaction with other little ones her age. I’m hoping to be able to make it a regular occurrence.

motherhood update, itsy bitsy indulgences

Relationships: So many of my girlfriends recently (within the last month) had little ones. I’ve been loving touching base with them and reflecting on how much changes when you become a mom. We’ve all had similar, and at the same time, different experiences. We recently went on a trip to Ojai with my girlfriend and her little family. It was a great time… seeing us all as parents… and having to be responsible for little beings other than ourselves. While I don’t see my girlfriends nearly as much as I would like, I do love that we are all going through this journey together.

TJ and I continue to navigate (successfully, IMO) the journey of being parents together. In one of my mom’s groups, I mentioned that having been married for 6 years before we made the decision to have a baby made it easier, and more difficult at the same time. Easier in the sense that we had no regrets. We’d traveled, been spontaneous, had late late nights, and enjoyed laaaazy weekends…. so #NoRegrets. Yet, it was also a shock to the system. As a therapist I’ve always recognized the importance of the marital dyad in the health of the entire family. That is something TJ and I are very committed to. We make time for each other and always try to have open and honest communication.

motherhood update, itsy bitsy indulgences

Favorite Moments: Despite the struggles of the month, these little moments always make it sweeter….

Like the fact that little miss puckers up and gives a sweet little kiss when you say “Can I have a kiss?”…. she was even kissing a new little friend she met at barre class….

Her 3 tooth grin…. one on top, two on the bottom….

When I walk in the door and her face lights up and she claps her hands in excitement #MeltsMyHeart

Her mischievous little personality…. girlfriend gets into anything and everything that isn’t hers…

The fact that she is learning sign language… she almost has “more” down and we are working on “please” + “all done.” I want her to be able to effectively communicate her needs… and I’m starting this gal early.

Our Hawaii trip… despite some of the challenges in traveling with her… watching her level of curiosity and excitement made everything worth it….

When she says “mamama” + “dadadada” + “hiiiiiiiii”…..


Wish us luck as we enter into the 10th month!!


Top Tips For Looking Chic In Weekend Wear

weekend wear, itsy bitsy indulgences

I’m a weekend lover. I pretty much count down the days until Friday evening. There is something that is so simple about a weekend that doesn’t have much on the agenda. Some of my favorite Friday-Sunday activities include cooking delicious meals, heading out to a new breakfast spot, evenings spent sipping a little wine, catching up + reconnecting with friends + family, and sleeping in a little longer than typical (well… never past 7:30am with little miss as our alarm clock….). Yet, one of my favorite parts of the weekend is the laid back look of the outfits I tend to pull together. Especially in the fall months… when the temperatures drop and cozy layers are the norm. Today I am sharing my favorite must haves from Nordstrom for looking chic and pulled together, all while maintaining that comfy feel all weekend long.

1. Comfy Kicks: This is a must in my book. Even before Harper came along, my daytime attire almost always consisted of comfortable sneakers. Heels were reserved for a fun evening out… since lately we’ve been opting for day-dates a chic pair of kicks tends to be my go-to. This pair is super comfortable and pretty much goes with any outfit. I also own this pink option, and think these sneakers in a herringbone print are super versatile.

2. Leggings: I have a dresser drawer full of comfy, yet stylish leggings. I think that aside from my favorite distressed jeans, these are an excellent alternative if you want to look stylish and stay comfortable. I bought these faux leather leggings (pictured today) last year and wore them all the time. I also love this charcoal high waisted pair, as well as this black high waisted option. If you’re looking for a pair that isn’t black and has a little more of a pant feel to them, check out these olive green moto leggings.

3. A Casual Sweater: I am a sucker for a comfortable throw-on-and-go option. I love the side-slits and the high-low option on this one (which comes in two color options)…. yet a few other favorites for fall include this cowl neck option or this black + white striped one.

4. Cozy Accessory: I have a three piece rule when I am putting outfits together… and it always applies to my weekend looks. After I have the bottom and top picked out I always add a third piece. Whether that is a jacket tied around the waist or a hat (#obsessed with this option), it’s my trick to looking more pulled together than I really am. My favorite cozy accessory for fall is currently a scarf (although, I will forever be a hat proponent as well). This black and white windowpane one is super cozy… and I am also considering this neutral fringe option, as well as this poppy colored one. I think the brightness adds a great pop of color to a neutral outfit. When the temperatures get even cooler, I love this pom pom beanie as well.

That’s it. As always, I think looking pulled together doesn’t have to be difficult or take an exorbitant amount of time. So, here’s to the next few days going by quickly so I can jump into some of my favorite pieces!


{Outfit Details || Sweater (wearing XS) | Leggings (such a great price, wearing XS) | Shoes | Scarf | Sunglasses | Purse}

fall weekend wear, itsy bitsy indulgences

fall scarf, itsy bitsy indulgences

side slit sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

trenton sneakers, itsy bitsy indulgences


weekend wear, itsy bitsy indulgences

side slit sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

fall sweater, itsy bitsy indulgences

weekend wear, itsy bitsy indulgences

weekend style, itsy bitsy indulgences

weekend style, itsy bitsy indulgences

Thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post