04.24.2017

Weekend Recap || Evolving Friendships

(Clear skies all weekend)

My definition of friendship has changed over the years. When I was young, a best friend was the person you spent every waking moment with…. after school play dates, weekend sleep overs, and hours on the phone chatting. In high school, it meant passing countless notes back and forth to each other, spending every summer day at the beach together, and sending each other code pages (yes, I’m talking about a pager, not a text message… that’s how old I am….). In college, it meant rowdy nights and reminiscent mornings, seeing each other through heartache, and pulling all nighters together to cram for a mid-term. Now, as I am much older, my definition has changed greatly…

This past weekend, one of my best girlfriends from college was visiting. She and her little family recently moved to the East Coast, so in person visits, and even phone conversations, aren’t as frequent as we’d like (dang time difference). TJ took little miss for the morning, so I headed out, solo, to meet with my girlfriend. Of course, this is the same friend who I saw daily in college, the one that stood by me at my wedding, and the one who couldn’t have been happier for me when I became pregnant. We picked up where we left off… as if time hadn’t passed. Yet, time went quickly, and when we both realized we needed to get back to our families, there was a bit of sadness for me in not knowing when I’d see her next….

You see, what I came to realize this past weekend is that true, lasting, friendship isn’t about seeing, or even talking, to someone daily, or even weekly. It’s about the inherent connection that exists. The fact that you think about them daily and seamlessly pick up where you left off when you get together again. It’s always amazing to me how relationships change and evolve…. and through that process some friendships drift, and still others remain stronger than ever. I consider myself lucky to have a handful of friends who have weathered the ups and downs with me, celebrated in life’s special moments (weddings + births), and have allowed me to just be who I am.

So, as we go into the week ahead, I enter it with the intention of returning my text messages a little sooner (3 days is probably a little long… sorry friends….) or just reaching out and checking in with a friend…. because good friends aren’t always easy to come by…. so, reminding them how special they are to me is important!

Have a good week friends! xx

(Someone knows a good thing when she sees it…. (onesie, jellies))

(New rips + feminine lace for a little Friday happy hour bubble (top, shorts))

(How brunch with a toddler goes….. (Harper’s Outfit))

(A little booch to go)
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So, I decided to officially sign up for the Tone It Up Bikini Bikini Challenge… and starting with this workout Monday morning. I also made some of my favorite egg muffins for the week, and we grilled a bunch of chicken on Sunday evening for the week ahead. Sometimes just having those items on hand makes healthy choices much easier. You can read more about Tone It Up here.

I’m super excited for Cabo at the end of this week and headed to the mall this past weekend with TJ + little miss to make a few last minute warm weather purchases. I snagged these raw hem chambray shorts… perfect to travel in and just live the lounge life in when I return. I think it would pair perfectly with my favorite shell tank (currently on major sale) in mauve or oatmeal, as well as this cut out tank in a front knot. I also snagged this adorable white romper and lace tank… perfect for the trip, and after as well. This blue and white stripe tunic is going to be my go-to cover up, and these espadrilles, a favorite from last spring, will be on heavy rotation too. This red pom pom top was initially supposed to be reserved for the trip, but I couldn’t wait and decided to wear it Saturday night for some margarita sipping. A few other items heading into my suitcase include this tiered tank (super feminine), red bathing suit, and this floral embroidered top. I also love this blue and white stripe ruffle tank (super cute with cut-offs) and this matching white lace trim crop top + shorts set.

Annnnd, when the trip is over, and it’s back to everyday life, I’m loving this feminine ruffle sleeve v-back tee in blush (but it comes in so many different color options), this eyelet tank (perfectly pairs with above mentioned chambray shorts), and these high waisted white shorts I’ve also been on the hunt for the perfect summer jogger pant and am going to give these a try. I like the blue color, but there are a few other options as well. I also think these oatmeal colored slides are a great everyday basic, and I love the shape of this lightweight utility jacket… such a great piece for spring and summer. My favorite cold shoulder open knit from last year was just restocked in 3 color options… I wore it all throughout the spring and summer… such a great everyday basic.

A few items I bought for little miss include this adorable smocked romper, embroidered flutter sleeve top, and this adorable hot pink romper.

04.21.2017

Champagne Chatting || Q&A Of Frequently Asked Questions

(Top | Jeans | Hat | Slides)

Happy Friday friends! What. A. Week. TGIF! Today’s post is dedicated to answering your questions from the past three weeks. As always, feel free to send me an e-mail or comment below for the next Q&A round. I hope you all have a great weekend!
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1. Are those espadrille platforms comfortable? Like comfortable to walk around San Francisco in?? Have a trip coming up and looking for something comfortable but that doesn’t scream tourist.

These cognac platform espadrilles have been one of my favorite pairs of shoes for the past couple of years (they keep bringing them back year after year). I wear them with and without a thin nylon sock and find them to be very comfortable. Be sure to size up (I’m usually a 6.5 and sized up to a 7).

2. Would you consider doing an update to your everyday makeup routine sometime soon? 

Yes, I am currently working on a video tutorial for next Friday’s blog post (crossing my fingers I get it done). Some recent favorite finds include this volumizing mascara and this eyebrow pencil.

3. I’m always intrigued by women that make career changes and how they adapt.  Would you share the pros and cons?  What do you miss about being a therapist? (there was also a questions about if I was/still am a therapist).

To answer the questions as to if I was/still am a therapist the answer is yes and no. I graduated with my Master’s degree in psychology, completed my 3,000 intern hours, and passed my licensing exam, and practiced as a Marriage + Family Therapist (mainly with the youth population, and their families, at risk for losing placement due to psychiatric hospitalizations, juvenile hall, or the foster care system) for 6 years. About 3 years into this role, I began this blog as a way to blog about balance and the things I love. When I became pregnant with Harper, I began to re-examine my profession…. the impact it had on me personally and how that would ultimately affect my role as a mother. I found myself completely exhausted, mentally + emotionally, after work which worried me as I moved closer to my due date. I had made the decision to go back to work part time after Harper was born. Yet, I was blessed enough that the blog had grown enough and I was able to make a decision to blog full time. So, I am no longer a practicing therapist, but I do still read books in the field, as human behavior still fascinates me…..

I thought very long and hard…. had many discussions with TJ and my family before I made the decision to change careers (you can read about that here). I weighed out the pros and cons… and thought about what I would miss. I felt as if I was fully prepared to make the transition and feel as if I have adapted well. There are a few things I miss though. I miss seeing a bunch of people on a regular basis. Blogging can be very isolating. While I’m an introvert, I do really like people, so I for sure miss that aspect. Another con is that my “work” hours are rather nebulous. I don’t get much done during the day anymore, so I am often working in the very early morning hours (6:30-7:30am), a small chunk in the afternoon (2:30pm-4:30), and then again in the later evening (6:45pm-9:30pm)… and lots on the weekend… not ideal… but the pro is that I get to spend more time with little miss, and I don’t have an official “boss” per say. When I think about it, I don’t miss the work I was doing. It was hard, it was challenging, and I started to get burned out (if I’m being completely honest). I always wanted to help inspire people to be the best versions of themselves… to live well balanced lives… and this is the place where I have chosen to pursue that, and I love it… and feel very lucky. Should there come a time in my life where I feel a calling back into the field then it’s an option I will look into.

4. I am going to a casual baby shower and unfortunately I still have a baby belly. Do you have any dress recommendations? Nothing tight and I do not usually wear tank tops.

I own this one and love it. It’s a really fun, bright color… if it’s too bright, here are a few other color options.  Not sure how you feel about off the shoulder, but this one is really cute (post-baby belly friendly) and comes in a lot of great color options. Also love (and recently purchased) this floral maxi dress… it’s a cold shoulder option too, but tossing on a denim jacket with it makes it super cute. This is a really cute, casual, dress with sleeves and it comes in a few color options too. Very versatile as well. This stripe dress has the cutest sleeves and is super versatile through the spring, summer, and warmer fall days. I also own, and love, this tunic dress (it has long sleeves, but in the warmer months they can be pushed up) as well as this embroidered dress.

5. Any recommendations for a neutral sandal for day and night? Not too high of a heel for this momma! 

So many great options our there this season! As far as a flat slide goes for daytime, I own and love this blush pair (super comfortable… multiple color options), this brown pair (several other color options too), single strap slide sandal, these light rose gold slides, and these velvety knotted slides. As far as the evening goes, I love a block heel…. and think this ankle strappy pair is super cute, personally own and love this studded heel, this tan mule, and this tan block heel sandal with a dainty ankle tie. I also think these woven block heel sandals are gorgeous.

6. What books do you recommend? 

I just finished reading The Singles Game (by the same author as The Devil Wears Prada)… it’s a light read, which was exactly what I was looking for… a little predictable romance…. a good before bedtime option. I also love a good thriller (think Girl On The Train + Gone Girl…) so I ordered All The Missing Girls + Big Little Lies. My mom also read Winter Garden for her book club and loved it… so I’m going to try to read that one too.

7. I love seeing your food posts, I might be wrong, but do you try to eat vegetarian as much as possible? 

I actually really like meat… and my body craves it. I avoided red meat for a very long time… yet, when I was trying to get pregnant with little miss, my acupuncturist had me start eating it a couple times a week. What I do like about a vegetarian/vegan based diet is how much “plant” is included on a daily basis. So, while I eat meat (lots of fish, chicken, and red meat… all organic and hormone free) I try to make the bulk of my meal veggies and fruits.

8. What do you use for style inspiration? You also mentioned you shop on-line a lot. What is your process when choosing things to order? Do you have go to designers? Also, do you have budget friendly ideas to pull off your look for a little less?

For style inspiration, I use magazines and Pinterest to find trends I like and that fit my personal style…. I do most of my shopping on-line because it’s really hard to spend any decent amount of time at the mall with a toddler. When I order items on-line I check the fabric, measurements of the product (and even take out a measuring tape to see where it would hit on my body), as well as reviews, shipping costs (I prefer free shipping + returns… or a return in store option), as well as return policy (some have a 14 day turn around and that’s really hard for me… sometimes an item sits in a box for 3 days before I even try it on). I wrote a whole blog post on how I shop on-line here. My favorite places to shop include Nordstrom, ShopBop, Revolve, Free People, Madewell, LOFTAbercrombie (so many cute options for spring and summer), and Anthropologie. As far as designers go, Free People is always a brand I reach for time and time again… I love the classic pieces from Madewell… and I’ve really been loving the fit of Levi’s jeans. At Nordstrom I really like Halogen, Caslon, ASTR, Chelsea 28, Faithful The Brand, TopShop, and JOA. At the end of the day, brand doesn’t matter… if it fits nicely, and I feel comfortable and confident in it, I buy it.

As far as budget friendly ideas to pull of my looks, please always feel free to send me an e-mail to ask if I can find/know of a similar piece that is less expensive. If I can find one, I will usually always list it next to the original item. Hope that helps!

9. Did you use any types of baby carrier or wrap with little miss? I am looking for something to carry my little guy in but don’t know which way to go. Any tips would help!

Yes! When I discovered a baby carrier I was so so happy! We used a Solly Baby Wrap, as well as a BabyBjorn. I did an entire blog post on them about a year ago.

10. What are some of your favorite nail colors as we get into spring and summer?

I always love neutral nail shades! Since the polish is there for at least a week, I like it to go with everything. Lately, I’ve been getting gel and have been really bad at asking for the name/brand. I’m going in this weekend to get my nails done, so I will put it up in this week’s blog post. My favorite non-gel brand is OPI. I’ve always had great success with their polishes, specifically the bigger brush (less mistakes when I do it myself). My current favorites include Alpine Snow (my favorite white shade), Half Past NudeSteel Waters Run Deep (Infinite Shine Brand… and wearing it on my toes currently), It Never Ends, + You’re Blushing Again. For a fun, brighter pink color, I like Rose Against Time and Down To The Cor-al. I use an OPI top coat, as well as Out The Door quick drying top coat.

11. What sunscreen do you prefer for yourself and Harper? 

For myself I love Sun Bum, and for Cabo I just purchased this Supergoop lip balm since my lips always get so chapped. For Harper I go between Baby Organics + Honest.

12. I am just curious, as I start this blog journey for myself, if you wouldn’t mind sharing who takes your photos?

Tj, my husband, takes my photos 85-90% of the time… the other 10-15% my mom takes! I think it’s important to have someone who you feel 100% comfortable around take your pics. I’ve tried photographers in the past and have never been as satisfied as when I have a family member take them.

13. I would love to know your hair routine, especially how you style it.  Hope you can consider that for a post soon. 

I am working on a video for my daily hair routine and hoping to get it up in May. An old tutorial is available here (not a video)…. but the products I am currently swearing by include this purple shampoo to cut the gold tones, this oil, and this leave in product.

14. How are your lashes doing with the Rodan + Fields Lash Boost?

I am loving the R+F lash boost product. When I first started, I had just removed my fake lashes (which I had for an entire year), so my lashes were seriously non-existent. After the first two months I wasn’t completely satisfied, but figured I was literally starting with nothing, so I would continue another round. Let me tell you, I am so glad I did. This stuff had people asking me if I had my fake lashes back. My lashes aren’t as thick as they were with my falsies, but they are for sure longer. I have also started using it on my brows to fill them in…. and it worked wonders. I only have to lightly fill them in now… and before I was needing to do some major work. For the first couple of months the treatment did make my eyes itch though… just an FYI.

15. Have you thought about baby #2? 

We have thought about when, but are not thinking anytime soon. We really want to enjoy our time with Harper, enjoy this part of our lives…. traveling with only one, getting a babysitter for only one, and really just savor our time with Harper while she develops at such a rapid rate.  I’m thinking that when she’s potty trained we’ll start trying for baby number 2… who knows though!

16. I was wondering if you had a car seat that you travel with? 

We travel with the Nuna Pipa (meets FAA regulations)… yet the base is a real beast to travel with. We are currently looking for a convertible carseat and will likely stick with Nuna.

17. What are some of your favorite workout pieces for Spring? 

I’m always wearing leggings when I work out (unless I’m running outside) so I swear by these high waisted leggings, this color blocked pair, and these running crops. I love this crop (wearing it with all my high waisted leggings and considering it in another color) as well as this sports bra (esp in the pink). I just bought this tie front tank, and I really like this mesh tank too (I have two mesh tanks and love working out in them).

18. What kind of bras do you like? I will be done breastfeeding soon and want to treat myself to all new undergarments!

I remember being where you are and I treated myself to this lace bralette. It’s so feminine and I seriously wear it all the time (I’ve become quite deflated in the chest area…..). I also bought a few of these lace bralettes and love them!  I also wear this calvin klein bralette and this free people criss cross one too. As far as an underwire option goes, I have always loved this bra. It’s well made, and I love the feminine details the lace adds… and this option is another one of my favorites too! As far as strapless goes, I personally love this lace bandeau and this underwire option.

19. I have been training for a half-marathon and the race is finally here! I know you have run several half-marathons, so I have a few questions for you… What is your fitness routine the week before? What is your meal plan the week before? How do you balance weight loss and long distance running? I initially intended to train as a goal for myself physically and mentally… but also hoped to lose weight in the process! Unfortunately I have been finding that my appetite has expanded tremendously and I do not feel as I am loosing weight at all. Any tips?

Yay! So excited for you! It’s such a great feeling when you cross the finish line (we celebrated with mimosas after…..)! I haven’t run one in a few years (hoping to run one again this year though…), but as far as I can remember, I didn’t do any long runs the week before. I kept them to a maximum of 6 miles and continued to cross train (spin + yoga) and stretch (so so so important… I had a big back injury after my first half marathon because I didn’t stretch…. probably because I was running towards a mimosa…. kidding…).  The evening before, I ate a regular meal as well (I know a lot of people “carb-load” but I didn’t…. maybe a little more brown rice than usual….). I felt the important meal was breakfast… which was a bowl of oatmeal and a banana to fuel me for the run. It’s what I had always eaten before my training runs, so I didn’t want to mix anything up. I know people tell you the adrenaline will carry you… and it’s actually true.

As far as losing weight, that’s a hard one. You definitely want to make sure you are eating enough to fuel your body… and you want to listen to what your body is telling you. For me, I was just mindful as to what I was eating. If I was hungry in between meals, I’d have a small snack… sliced carrots and hummus… apple slices with almond butter… or a favorite protein bar. I also don’t think I lost any weight while I was training. I don’t know if that’s much help though!

03.31.2017

Favorite Products From February + March || Food, Beauty, Fashion

Today I’m bringing back “My Favorite Products” Series. I haven’t done one since a round-up of my favorite products from 2016, and decided now was a good time to bring it back. After the New Year, I was using a lot of the same products and hadn’t really discovered anything worth sharing. Yet, over the past two months, I’ve found some items/products that I’m really excited to share with you… and I hope you love them as much as I do (I’ve moved my favorite baby/toddler products to my Motherhood Updates… there will be one up next Friday, so stay tuned).

I hope you all have a great weekend!!

FOOD:

1. Hilary’s Eat Well Frozen Bites: I discovered these on instagram and couldn’t find them for the longest time. I searched Sprouts and Whole Foods with no success. Then, I stumbled across them at Mother’s Market. They are absolutely delicious (and come in three flavors) and Harper likes them too. I toss them in salads, dip them in soups, and have even added them to breakfast sandwiches.

2. Rx Bars: These have been my go-to snack lately. With simple ingredients, they are super tasty and not sugar laden. Tj is hooked on them too. Our favorite flavors are Blueberry, Mint, and Chocolate.

3. Zevia Soda: Alright, I used to looooove Diet Coke back in the day… until I learned what it was actually doing to my body… but I also didn’t want all the sugar from regular cola. I hadn’t had a sip of soda for years and then I came across this brand. It’s clear in color (so no dyes), sweetened by Stevia, Non-GMO, and has no phosphoric acid. They have so many different flavors of you favorite sodas too…. and they taste almost the same!

4. Trader Joe’s Cauliflower Soup: This has quickly become a favorite, quick lunch. With all organic ingredients, and a list that I can pronounce, I was hooked from the beginning. It’s found in their fresh pre-made foods section. I love dipping the above mentioned veggie bites into it!

BEAUTY: 

1. NARS Illuminator: This stuff is pretty amazing. After running out of my last illuminator, I decided to give it a try, given the reviews I read. I bought it in the “orgasm” color and love the subtle glow it gives my brow bones + cheeks.

2. Le Petit Marseillais Body Soap: I received these soaps to review, since they were a French brand launching in the US, and fell in love with their fresh scents. I’m particularly fond of the vanilla, peach, and lavender.

3. Davines Hair Oil: I had been using the moroccan hair oil for a while, and discovered that it seemed to be weighing my hair down. I switched at the recommendation of my wonderful hair dresser and was hooked (I borrowed from my mom first just to make sure I loved it…). It’s lightweight and I love the shine it adds to my locks. I use it after I’ve curled my hair.

4. Rodan + Fields Lash Boost: (I am not a distributer) I was wildly curious about this product when it launched. It was at the time when I was contemplating removing my lashes (for various reasons) and decided to give it a try. I’ve been using the product for 11 weeks so far and the results are amazing. At first I wasn’t too sure about it, but in the last 2 weeks or so, my lashes have sprouted. If you all want a full review, let me know and I can do one!

FASHION:

1. Wide Brimmed Hat: One of my favorites from last season is back again! At an excellent price point, and amazing fit (looks good on anyone) I couldn’t resist snagging it in the straw color. I wear it to the park with Harper to shield my face from the sun…. but plan on wearing it daily in Cabo.

2. Slide Sandals: This pair is so incredibly comfortable, and I wear them all day and have no issues (they are super padded). I love the design, and how many different color options they come in (I own the blush color). I also have been wearing these pretty little blush lace-ups on repeat.

3. High Waisted Distressed Jeans: I hadn’t bought a new pair of jeans since before Harper was born, and then I bought three. I’ve been living in all of them, and love how different they all are (yet, of course, all distressed). This high waisted “girlfriend” jean and these high waisted skinny jeans have quickly moved to the top of my rotation. I love the washes, distressing, and fit on both pairs…. and they’re both incredibly comfortable.

4. Stripe Tops (3): Can you ever have enough?? I don’t think so. I have three that have been on heavy rotation as of late. This drop shoulder, three quarter sleeve, top is lightweight and perfect for all seasons. This tank is made of the most amazing material (I bought a M, also own in black, and it comes in about 9 color options), and I love the looser fit of this one. All three are at excellent price points as well. Stripe tees are a must for any wardrobe… such an easy throw on and go option.

5. Short-Sleeve Sweatshirt: I did an entire blog post on these, but they’re comfortable and an excellent everyday option. I pair this one with my favorite leggings for a lounge day… or day full of errands, and with jeans for a laid back, casual look.

6. Aviators: I had the best pair of aviators that I purchased about 8 years ago…. then, one day, I dropped them and the lenses got so scratched I couldn’t see through them anymore. I was so sad. I recently purchased these and they’re amazing. I love the gold contrast with the black lenses.

7. Casual Zip-Up (on major sale!): A soft zip-up for a morning run to the park, or family walk, was a must have for me. This one fit the bill perfectly. The fit was excellent and I loved the oatmeal color (it comes in a few other color options here). It’s an excellent throw on and go option for post-workout too.

8. Calvin Klein Undies: I’ve owned this CK bralette for over a year and love how soft it is. I wear it under tees and when I’m lounging around the house…. so, I decided to give the underwear a chance. They lived up to my expectations. Super soft. Super Comfortable.

9. Blush Tote: I chatted about this tote a little bit in this post, but decided it deserved a spot here. I use this tote all the time. It’s big enough to double as a diaper bag + purse + still have room left over. I use it as an overnight bag too. It’s of excellent quality.

10. Cut-offs: Last year I struggled to find the perfect pair of cut-offs without flashing the world (never ok). I eventually figured out the sizing on One Teaspoon shorts, and fell in love. This year, I decided I wanted a high waisted option and found these. They’re the perfect length (no booty flashing in these babies) and I love, love, the high waist option. Trust me on these. You’ll love them too (btw, they run TTS… I bought a 24 + 25 and the 24 fit very comfortably).

11. Open Knit Pullover: I have always been a fan of the open knit for warmer temperatures. I get cold easily, so they’re the perfect layer for the cooler evenings and mornings. I saw this one at the end of last year and ended up getting it for my birthday… I wear it all the time… on the shoulder, off the shoulder, and layered over the stripe tanks above. I also saw this one (currently on sale!) back in January, but it sold out so quickly. When it was restocked at the end of February, I snagged it up. I wear both all the time.

03.27.2017

Weekend Recap || Decisions + Consequences

(The prettiest wildflowers from Trader Joe’s)

I’ve always been the type of person who likes to know all my options before making a decision. I weigh out the good, the bad, the what-if’s, and then attempt to make the best decision possible. While some people are risk takers, I am not. I choose the option with the least amount of risk and potential consequence….

So, you’d think when the hostess at the restaurant asked if we wanted to wait 30 minutes for an outside seat, while having a toddler already 15 minutes past lunch, I would have quickly weighed the options, declined, and opted for the “I can seat you immediately inside” option. You’d think, right? Well, I made an informed bad decision. I caved into temptation… a bellini, with the sun shining, and a view of the harbor…. I mean, wouldn’t you too?….

This is how it played out. We opted to wait, and had a fun time exploring the marina with mini sailboats and music playing in the background… then, we started to go through our back-up stash of snacks (this should have been the first alarm to head back and opt to be seated immediately….). By the time we sat down, we had a fussy toddler, who had gone through the “in case of emergency” snacks… a toddler who was no longer hungry for lunch…. which meant a toddler who wanted nothing to do with the high chair….

We somehow made it through lunch (a very rushed one at that….) and thought that letting her walk around a little would buy us some extra time. Poorly informed decision making number two. The carnage at the end of the afternoon was a broken pair of sunglasses, a beyond fussy (teething) toddler, and two exhausted parents, who couldn’t help but make an extra strong margarita at the end of the night…. which enabled us to laugh at the entire situation…. lesson learned.

Friends, here’s to a week of making excellent, well informed choices. We all know the consequences. Have a good one!! xx

(Le Salad at Zinque… pre-meltdown….)

(A little family day at Lido Island Marina… mini sailboats for the little ones + music + food trucks for the adults…. pre-meltdown again….)

(Post leg day HIIT workout protein pancakes. So good.)
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With bathing suit season right around the corner, we’ve been upping our fitness routines with HIIT workouts. I have an ab routine coming this week, along with the recipe for those protein pancakes. So stay tuned. If you’re looking for an all over body workout, be sure to check out this one.

This past weekend, I lived in this casual sweater tank (and wore it to a mom’s group last week too), cold shoulder tee (in black), and this super soft basic shell (in the mauve color) as a bottom layer to this open knit cardigan in the oatmeal color (on major sale too!). Given that the temps are going to be in the high 70’s for the next couple of weeks, I snagged these distressed denim shorts and flutter sleeve basic tee. I also love pairing shorts with sweatshirts and sweaters and love this blush lightweight cold shoulder sweater (own it as well), and I’m eyeing this tie sleeve sweatshirt (in oatmeal), cold shoulder sweatshirt (in the blush/mauve color), and this lace insert sweatshirt in grey (adds a cute feminine touch). I also think these grey joggers + sand colored drawstring pants would be perfect options for daily living…. and how cute is this lavender ruffle tee? I also think this basic white tank will be a great addition to my collection.

Also, just an fyi, if you loved this blush color suede jacket (featured here), it’s back in stock! Such a great option for spring…. and my favorite lightweight wrap is back in stock too. It’s a perfect post workout piece.

So, we are 95% certain we will be going to Cabo in a few weeks…. we decided we needed a vacation somewhere tropical, and have been looking at deals, and found some excellent options. Naturally, I’m already thinking about what to pack…. I’m obsessed with this stripe bathing suit (love the low back), geo trim cover-up caftansmocked off the shoulder dress (such an excellent price too!), this gardenia embroidered top (not sure if I like the sand or black color….), this ombre chambray dress, these white leather knotted slides, straw bag, and straw hat (white I won in the black + tan color… but like the sand option for this season).

I also bought little miss this adorable crop top + pants combo!

03.24.2017

Champaign Chatting || Q&A Of My Most Frequently Asked Questions This Month

(Details || Shoes | Jeans | Sweater | Sunglasses)

The last time I wrote this post, I titled it Tea Talk… then I realized, since this post goes up on Fridays, I would much rather have a Q&A over champaigne…. so I renamed it. I’m answering some of the questions I was asked over the past month, in case you had similar ones too. As always, feel free to e-mail me, or leave your questions in the comments section. My favorite part is engaging with you all, so the more the merrier. Annnnd, cheers to the weekend friends! xx
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1. Where is your initial necklace from? I am expecting and would love to get my daughter’s initials.
The necklace is from Maya Brenner Designs. Her pieces are so dainty, and come in gold, rose gold, and silver. Mine is rose gold. The initial design also comes in a dainty bracelet + ring (which I got with TJ’s initials… and wear stacked with my wedding band… since I’m too chicken to get a tattoo).

 2. Have you found any good sandals for little miss? With the weather warming up, I am wanting to buy some for my little girl.
I received these sandals for her last summer, but they were way too big, and actually fit her now. She was a little uncertain in them at the beginning, but seems to do well in them now. She also really likes these chambray espadrilles. I bought them for her last year too, and was so excited to see them return this season… I plan on buying them in her current size and one size up since they’re such a perfect warm weather shoe.

3. You mentioned taking a trip to Cabo or Palm Springs. My husband and I are considering both of those places for a trip for our wedding anniversary which is coming up this spring. Do you and TJ have any favorite hotels or resorts in either place?

First of all, even though both places are so different, you can’t go wrong with either! So many favorite spots in both areas. In Palm Springs we LOVE The Parker, La Quinta Resort + Spa, and The Ritz in Ranch Mirage. The Parker is a fun + trendy spot in the heart of Palm Springs, La Quinta is a huge, gorgeous resort where you have little casitas and private pools (you can bring your own drinks + food to the pool, which is always nice!) + The Ritz is perched in the hills with spectacular views and their rooms with fire pits are amazing! In Cabo, we love The One + Only (so so gorgeous, not cheap though), Cabo Azul (in San Juan, which is a slower, not as crazy part of Cabo and they have villas with full kitchens), + The Welk has amazing views and kitchens too (which is very nice… again, you can take your own drinks to the pool… just pick stuff up at the local Walmart). I did a Cabo guide here (kind of old, but still relevant), and a Palm Springs guide here, here, here, + here (oldest to most recent)). I hope that helps and that you have an amazing time wherever you go!

4. Do you normally cut the bottom of your jeans to make the length fit you or do you get them hemmed? Asking because these look great and I’m looking for other options than just rolling the extra length or having them professionally hemmed. Thanks!
Yes, I normally cut the bottom of my jeans (unless they are a more formal/structured option… but I don’t own many of those….)…. but I don’t know the last time I had a pair professionally hemmed! It’s super simple to do…. just fold your jeans under (while wearing them) and make a slight slit with scissors at the bottom… then just take them off and cut off the bottom. I recommend cutting off less in the beginning, just in case… you can always cut more if need be! You can also follow my step by step DIY…. I recently cut the hem of these jeans + this pair.

5. What brand of granola do you recommend? It’s so hard to sort through which brands are full of sugar and which are “healthy.
My absolute favorite is Purely Elizabeth granola. Her products are all gluten free, USDA organic, Non GMO certified, certified vegan, and certified B category (meaning they are socially + environmentally committed). The granolas taste delicious, and aren’t loaded with hidden ingredients. I highly highly recommend. You can read more about her products here.

6. You mention the importance of cross-training in your half-marathon plan. What type of classes do you usually do? I have been trying to do yoga 1x per week and then fit in a spin class and another boxing/HIIT type class.
When I started cross training for my half marathon training, I noticed such a huge difference in  endurance and time. I incorporate yoga at least once a week (it’s usually power yoga, but I love how it still stretches my body), as well as Spin and a HIIT session. It looks like we’re doing the same things. I think they’re a great combination to increase endurance and improve speed…. and help to prevent injury!

7. Did you use a car seat bag when you traveled with your nana? And what about the uppababy stroller? We’re taking our little for his first trip and don’t know where to start on packing and tricks to go through the airport and flight.
Yes, we took both our Nuna and UppaBaby in travel bags, and checked both at the gate. For the Nuna we used this travel bag (massive, but did the job) and this bag for the UppaBaby. The bottom carriage of the Vista is excellent for storage (which you’ll need/want when navigating the airport). Just a heads up, they will make you take separate the carseat from the stroller at the security checkpoint (you won’t be able to push the stroller through). I also highly recommend a baby carrier for the plane and in case your little one doesn’t want to stay in the stroller at the airport. You can see a couple traveling with baby posts here + here.

8. Do you have any tips on weaning?
When I weened, I took away one feeding a week…. to ensure that little miss was emotionally okay. When I took away a feeding, I did not pump during that time either, to begin to reduce my milk supply. To prevent encouragement I used cabbage leaves…. which actually really did work. The whole process took about a month to get through. It could be shorter or longer based on your little one though.

9. Can you recommend some looks for a spring work wardrobe please??
I’ve never worked in a very formal work setting… I could always wear jeans (not my distressed ones of course)…. but it was never required that I wear slacks. Given that, the suggestions I provide are likely to be more for a business-casual work environment. As far as pant options go, I think these cropped pants (that come in multiple color options) would be a great choice for the office (or even fieldwork… where much of my job was completed) and if your office if more on the casual side, I recommend a nice darker wash skinny jean. These scalloped flats are an excellent versatile option, and I think these mules are too. A lightweight cardigan and neutral blazer are great top layer options. As far as tops go, this denim tie waist top is structured enough, but allows a little personality to come through (would love it paired with the white capris mentioned above), sweater tank (I own it in the neutral color), and this navy + white stripe sleeveless blouse are all excellent options. If you’re looking for a dress, I think this white eyelet flutter sleeve + this stripe shirt dress are great options. This black skirt is also a nice alternative to a dress.

10. The pink chloe bag is out of my budget! Any similar bags you’d recommend at a lower price point? 
Yes, I found this option, with a chain strap (as opposed to a leather strap)… and also found this bag and this bag, in a soft grey, in an almost identical shape. I am loving grey as a neutral for this spring/summer.

11. In love with the stripe pants you posted on resort wear, but was wondering if they would be able to be worn out, or are they see-through?
These pants are a great lounging option at home, by the pool, or on the beach… but I don’t think they would work to be worn out to dinner. They are a little on the see through side… Although, you might be able to get away with nude underwear and a longer top though! I hope that helps!

12. I was looking into your Adidas sneakers. I am a dancer/ teacher/ theater. I am looking for sneakers to wear to teach, but I want make sure they can withhold my jumps and turns. Do you feel like these are still well quality and good for athletic activity?
I love these sneakers! They’re well made and very comfortable. I would wear them to the gym to do jumping exercises/HIIT workouts… but wouldn’t run long distances in them. I hope that’s helpful for you!

13. I’ve been meaning to try out that Barely Bread. Where did you buy it — online?
Yes, unfortunately you can only purchase on-line…. but if you’re looking for a paleo/gluten free option, it’s the best I’ve tried yet!

03.20.2017

Weekend Recap // Tired. Very Much So.

(The prettiest blooms of simple flowers)

If I was asked to sum up how I feel in one word it would simply be tired. Very much so actually. Tonight, after an adventure filled weekend, TJ and I sat at dinner (little miss throwing her halibut fish tacos on the ground….), looked at each other, and chuckled. So. Tired. Maybe exhausted would be a more appropriate word choice…..

And while I know that all sounds slightly on the negative side, I’d have to say it’s a good tired. One of those “I played all weekend long and now I’m pooped” tired. That childhood kind of fatigue where you were out all day, and when the head hits the pillow, you’re out (except, in your 30’s the next day’s alarm is at 5:30am…..). We worked out, ate out, sipped wine, went to the zoo, headed to the beach for brunch, sat with our toes in the pool in the early evening, and made homemade pizza + fish tacos. We ate good. Drank good wines. Laughed. Worked our muscles……

And now, I’m tired. Now, the couch is calling my name…. where I can numb out to some mindless Netflix movie that we’ve seen one too many times (if Tj has his way it’ll be Good Fellas….) and nosh on some Boom Chick Popcorn….

I hope you all have a great week…. filled with lots of “good tired” moments! xx

(P.S. My e-mail subscription provider had a glitch. If you missed Thursday’s Wellness Post + Friday’s Date Night On A Budget post be sure to check them out!)

(Coffee + Toast at Kit Coffee)

(Our weekend motto…. little miss spilled my iced tea everywhere…. leggings, sweatshirt)

(Weekend bubbly… espadrilles {also come in black})

(Loves her daddy….. fun at the zoo {Harper’s top})

(Sunday lunch at Juice Served Here….)
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This is supposed to be a busy week ahead, so I’m going to make this oatmeal bake and a batch of my egg muffins…. I’ll also be using the crock pot and one of our favorite recipes is this shredded chicken recipe.

Getting back to basics, I found this cute knit tank and had to snag it… perfect to layer under a jacket/cardigan or wear alone in warmer temps, and an excellent price point. I also bought this knotted cold shoulder tee (in grey) and saw that one of my favorite beige pullovers is currently on sale (comes in multiple colors and is an excellent transitional buy)! The temps are supposed to get cooler this week, so I’m planning on wearing this hoodie, super soft zip-up (currently on sale!), grey side lace up cardi (which I swore by when I was sick…), high-low short sleeve sweater, and this pullover several times this week (and also my grey joggers). All comfortable options that are easy to wear anywhere. This drop shoulder striped tee and mauve colored shell (which I wear knotted in front) have also been on heavy rotation as of late. I’ll also be pulling out my oatmeal thermal tunic and pairing it with my fav utility vest and jeans for a day at the park with Harper. I also just added this grey tunic to my shopping cart… it looks so soft and like an excellent everyday option….

Switching gears completely, I’m dreaming of a tropical vacation somewhere I can put my toes in the sand… sip a margarita (or anything, I won’t discriminate), and lounge around in bathing suits, cut-offs, sunscreen, and flip flops. That being said, I stumbled across some gorgeous options that I’m tucking away for said trip (date TBD….). How cute is this blue + white striped cover-up? I’m also obsessed with this one shoulder black ruffle two piece (loving the high waisted bottoms #PostPreggoStill), straw hat (love the material of this one),  and this adorable blue + white dress (also comes in blush). And, I think I could make room for these fab white slides.

03.13.2017

Weekend Recap || Love Can Change Your Direction

(Back in our old stomping grounds)

As I sit here in San Diego, celebrating our 7th wedding anniversary, I cannot be more thankful for where my love for Shannon has taken me (If you haven’t guessed by now, it’s TJ writing today’s post)….

It’s strange, being in San Diego this weekend, I’ve found myself thinking a lot about how I got to this point (happily married with a sweet little girl). I can’t believe I’ve been out of college for over 10 years…. and although we do this trip every year, I have been much more nostalgic this weekend thinking about my friends and how life has taken us all in different, albeit good, directions. I will never forget the day I left San Diego, after being done with my final course at USD. Since I graduated earlier than my friends,  I knew it was going to be hard saying goodbye to them and college life….

Fast forward a week later, I received a call from one of Shannon’s friends asking if I would be interested in going to a sorority dance called “Crush….” a Valentine’s themed event that kicked off the spring semester. Thinking big sister was trying to pawn off a freshman on me, I respectfully declined. Come to find out, it was not a freshman that needed a date, it was actually Shannon that was interested in going with me, but not wanting her identity to be known (the introvert that she is….). When I found this out…I was in utter disbelief. This was the girl I had a secret crush on for over a year. I always joked and called her the “computer lab girl…..”  somehow, our schedules aligned perfectly…every Tuesday and Thursday around 10:40am, we would find ourselves in the same place at the same time (the USD computer lab)…the only problem, I could not work up the courage to talk to her. So, instead, I would secretly check her out and try and figure out how I could somehow make our paths “unintentionally” cross. Fast forward a year, when I got home to OC, I thought my San Diego days were far behind me, however, that one call changed it all. While I did not go to the dance with Shannon, I made sure she knew I was interested in her. I frantically let her friends know of my interest once I found out she actually knew who I was. I got an opportunity to spend time with Shannon a few days later, and the rest is history.

We’ve now been married for 7 years (together 12 years as a couple) and while I am married to the woman of my dreams, having what I consider a successful marriage has been a lot of work. Love is hard. We are talking about 2 completely different people, with unique upbringings, sharing a home and life together….. add a child to the mix and another level of stress is added…..

However, being in San Diego this past weekend, where we come every year to celebrate…I could not be happier with where my life is now…. and where it is headed. Sure, we have the same challenges every couple does…. but at the core, we love each other deeply, we have the same goals for our marriage and as parents….

As someone who was very guarded with my heart in my younger days, whenI look back, I’m grateful I was able to be vulnerable with Shannon 12 years ago…. because, essentially, love changed the direction of my life. And as I go into this week, recharged and renewed, I hold this in the front of my mind. To be open to the experiences love gives me…. and to let it guide me. So, here’s to a week of letting love, whatever that love is for you (food, travel, etc.) be your guiding force.
– TJ

(Post SoulCycle brunch at Better Buzzed in Encinitas)

(My “A” ring was the perfect anniversary gift (Tj’s full name is Anthony)…. (pullover))

(Morning stair workout at the convention center… kicked my boot-ay)

(Post-workout boozy brunch)

(Opting to stay in with some take-out pizza and bubbly for our last night….)

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This past week we made these quinoa sweet potato burgers and they were a HUGE hit in our house. If you’re looking for a meatless Monday, try these! They’re also good leftover if you want to double the recipe.

We’re in a major heatwave over here…. so I packed my suitcase full of warm weather clothing. I finally pair of jeansfound a (well, actually I bought them, returned them because I wasn’t 100%, bought a different pair, hated that pair, and then repurchased this pair…..) and love the distressing, relaxed fit, and high waist (I sized up to a 25… NO stretch). I wore it with this ruffle body suit and loved the classic look! The temperatures dropped in the early evening, so I brought this open knit sweater in white (which I had been eyeing since the beginning of January) and this black sweatshirt with a mock choker (so chic!). I also brought this cute white one shoulder top, and this gorgeous white flutter sleeve top. For the day I brought this gold straw hat (love the wide brim), chambray romper, my favorite blush slides (seriously so comfortable), distressed denim shorts, and my favorite white henley tank (which I tie in the front). We also went to a spin class and did a convention center stairs workout so I brought my favorite leggings, hoodie, and tie front tee.

A few other items sitting in my cart include this gingham tank (love the material for spring), this drop shoulder stripe top (so perfect for everyday life), cold shoulder sweater in blush (lightweight), grey open knit sweater with a deep v back (obsessed with open knits… can you tell??)…. oh, and I LOVE this basic t-shirt dress (I actually wear it backwards… it’s a v-neck in the back and I prefer that neckline…)… it’s so versatile and a great throw on a go everyday option (especially paired with a denim jacket and sneakers… or flats and a suede jacket if you need to dress it up a little).

Annnnnd, since little miss didn’t have any warm weather clothes, I of course had to get a few for her…. like this adorable chambray romper, white ruffle trim top, pull on ruffle shorts, pink gingham bubble suit, and these little espadrilles (which I bought for her last year too and loved).

03.10.2017

14 Month Motherhood Update

I thought about how I wanted to start this post… several times I wrote, and then erased, my opening sentences. I contemplated just saying “Here’s my motherhood update….” and then decided that sounded abrupt (and lazy….). Then I decided I could write a lengthy intro about a recent revelation I had… and decided it was best to share that in the meat of the post…. and then I remembered some funny motherhood quotes I stumbled across on instagram…. I figured it’s Friday, we could all use a laugh at this point (I mean, longest week ever over here for me…. thought it was Friday twice this week….) so I decided I would share them here (and I hope you can see the humor in them too!):

“The joys of motherhood are never fully experienced until your children are in bed….” (okay, not entirely true…. but, come on… when there is peace and quiet in the home, and you’re sitting on the couch, finally relaxing, don’t you just melt at the thought of the little rugrat in the other room…. fast asleep??

“1. Going To Bed Early
2. Not Leaving The House
3. Not Going To A Party……
My childhood punishments have become my adult goals” No, but really. #HomeBody

“Parenting was so much easier when I raised my non-existent children hypothetically…..” Hmmmmm….

“You will never go to the bathroom alone again….” TMI? She follows me everywhere!

“A child’s laugh could simply be one of the most beautiful sounds in the world….” 

And with that, I give you my thoughts and reflections on 14 months…..

{Slides | Tank | Vest | Harper’s Onesie (have it in 4 colors… seriously the best) | Harper’s Shoes via Sweet n’ Swag}

General Thoughts + Feelings: This month I had varying emotions about toddler-hood and being a mom to a toddler. As she gets older, I find that I have so much fun with her… yet, at the same time, it brings with it more challenges…. While little miss’ curiosity of her surroundings grows, she begins to explore and test limits (and yes, she knows when she is doing something that might not be okay… like when she takes a flower off of a plant and moves it back and forth around her mouth…. and then just when she thinks I’m not looking, sticks it in her mouth….)… and that presents an entirely different set of mom (and parenting) challenges…

There have been a few moments in the past month where I found myself frustrated and exhausted. Then, I was at a mom’s group this past week and had a few conversations with people that struck a cord with me….

One talked about how her daughter didn’t have a certain characteristic because God knew she would’t be able to handle it….

Then, another spoke about how her spirited son was given to her for a reason… that she was meant to be his mom and he her son….

And while you may, or may not, believe in the spiritual component of the statements above (I happen to….) they can ring true for most people… and bring a sense of comfort. Little miss is my daughter (and TJ her father) for a reason…. there is something within me, and something within her that were meant to be together… there is something I am meant to teach her… and something she is meant to teach me….

And, as I began to look at our relationship in those terms, my perspective began to change. While I’m her parent, she is still teaching me daily. The challenges she presents to me are teaching moments for myself…. I wasn’t given the gift of patience (ask anyone), and she teaches me to have patience on a daily basis… I’m not one for silly random moments (that’s TJ’s strength)….and that’s something a toddler needs….so, daily, I get silly with her… dance for her while she’s in the bath… make silly faces to get her to laugh…. the list is endless…. and in turn, I hope she is learning to trust others….
learning what a loving relationship looks like…..
and learning to push the boundaries daily….
because, in the end, she is ultimately loved and supported…..

I also find myself looking at her, after a particularly difficult day, and reminding myself that, someday, she will be too big to hold, too big to tickle, and that someday she won’t come up to me asking to be held… that someday she will go off to college and get married… and in those moments, I will miss these small, everyday, and challenging times. When I remind myself of that, I am immediately softened, and am able to be much more present.

Sleeping: While last month I mentioned that little miss was sleeping soundly through the night… this month has shifted. We’ve had several middle of the night wake-ups…. a few abbreviated naps…. oh, and don’t let me forget to mention that she just didn’t nap yesterday. Period. Yet, I also know that these shifts come and go…. that just when you think its become permanent, things change…

Which is why I’m trying not to sweat it…. buuuut, I am keeping a close eye on her napping… and if she keeps missing… or having difficulty with her naps, we may have to make the transition to one afternoon nap. I’m imagining that things will begin to shake out this next month….

She continues to wear these pajamas through the night… and we read this book before bedtime.

Eating: Well, I’ve recently discovered why people have kiddos in the first place…. to eat their tasty leftover food (totally kidding.). She’s still pretty open to most foods (although, she’s developing a slight disinterest in brussels sprouts…..)… and I’ve recently started making her grilled cheese sandwiches (I use this brand of cheese), peanut butter + banana sandwiches, and these chicken nuggets (these may or may not be for me too…..). All things fruit… and most veggies… loves avocado… throws rice everywhere (we don’t serve this much anymore)…. enjoys fish…. and prefers water over juice….

She still loves throwing food over the side of her high chair… yet, we’ve simply started removing the tray of food (it’s removable while still keeping her strapped in) and waiting for the behavior to stop before putting the food back. We also tell her what we expect, and model it for her as well….. I’ll check back in next month on this one… as I’m sure it will be a work in progress…..

Body/Fitness: I’ve been feeling much better in this area since the beginning of the New Year. I’m not sure if it’s been a change in perspective…. as in, yes, my hips have widened and that’s okay….. or if it’s because I feel as if I’ve upped the ante in my workout routine… or maybe it’s a combination…. either way, I’ve felt good with where I am….

As far as working out goes, I’ve started to run more on the weekends, which has helped me feel more like myself. Long runs have always been something that I have cherished, so being able to get back out there and run for miles has helped me clear my head, get the creative juices flowing, and help me feel confident in my physical capacities… I’ve gotten myself back to 8 miles and it wasn’t easy! I also continue to create small HIIT workouts at home, which you can find under the fitness section (most recent here). I’m hoping that as temperatures warm up we can get out on family hikes and bike rides.

Relationships: Lots of fun in this area this past month. I feel like I was able to connect with my girlfriends much more… and even had a night away in LA with one of them. It was such a great day of self-care and girl time… and of course, made me miss my little family more…. which is the ultimate goal! Relax, refresh, and get back to those you love feeling renewed…. and that’s exactly how I felt…

TJ and I are even getting away this weekend for two whole nights to celebrate our anniversary (Harper will be staying with my parents!)…. we are looking forward to heading back to the city where we met…. and made so many amazing memories. There isn’t much on the agenda…. which is exactly what we need!… and who knows… maybe we will actually sleep in until 8am!

Something I’ve loved watching is Harper and TJ’s relationship grow. She loves him so much and is obsessed with saying “dadeeeeee.” She says it all the time…. and even runs to the door to greet him when he comes home from work. I can’t wait to see how it grows over the next several months….

Favorites:

Her favorite word is “Ouch” for everything….. I mean, everything….

It melts my heart when she climbs into my lap and hands me a book to read to her (and then walks away three pages in to get a different book….)….

She loves hide and go seek…. and putting clothes over her head and then pulling them off….

She loves to give big, open mouth, kisses…. so sweet….

Tantrums…. yes, they’ve started. It’s kind of cute though… like “sorry I ruined your day putting away your toys….” I saw that quote and could relate. She has full on started laying on the ground and crying. Lord help me….

Her dance moves continue to develop…. she make some so proud (insert wink face here….)

Her curiosity. I just love how everything fascinates her….

03.06.2017

Weekend Recap || Slowing Down

{Warm weather, and an 8 mile run, naturally lent itself to this….}

I went into Sunday with a list of things I needed to get done. Yet, life happened….

It started with an impromptu invitation to brunch with my family…. which we happily accepted (yet, in the back of my mind I was thinking about all the things I should be doing instead…). When we all arrived at brunch, we were welcomed with some of the worst service ever, and we couldn’t stop laughing about the absurdity of it all. We were filled with jokes, making an annoying situation better… along with belly hurting laughter….

After brunch, I realized I had enough time to do everything that I needed to do, so I went to put Harper down…. yet, she had other plans. She couldn’t stop crying (not sure why), and was just having a difficult afternoon. So, I held her, and we napped together in the afternoon….

As I was laying there, little miss on my chest, sound asleep, the list kept running through my head…. and I could feel my anxiety rising. Yet, in that same moment, I realized this was exactly where I was supposed to be. That everything else could wait…. and that what I needed was to slow down, and enjoy this moment with her… as there will come a day where she will be too big those special moments…..

And in that reflection, I realized the whole day was one in which I was forced to slow down and enjoy those around me. It’s funny how life has a way of doing this to those who resist the need to press pause once in a while…..

As I look at my to-do list for Monday, I realize it has doubled, but I wouldn’t trade it in for the memories made yesterday. So, here’s to a week of letting life give you just what you need! Have a good one friends xx

{When you order the same thing unknowingly….}

{So full of energy. All. The. Time}

{The prettiest new mauve mules.… under $30!}

{Sunday afternoon nap with little miss…. and our favorite neutral basics (tank, cardigan, cap)}
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I’m so excited for this coming weekend… as I mentioned a few times before, it’s our Anniversary and we’ll be heading to San Diego for the weekend to celebrate…. dinners out, sleeping in, no schedule…. it will be a nice few days of adult-living…. That being said, I’ve added a few items to the suitcase. The weather is currently hovering around the low 70’s, so I’m planning of bringing this beach cardigan (love the material), thermal tunic (which comes in 5 color options… I bought the blush/almond color),  open knit sweater (I’ve had my eye on it since January…. and I’m obsessed with open knit and the white!), blue striped off the shoulder top, white ruffle sleeve top, and this pink suede jacket (I bought a size 4). I also snagged this adorable mauve colored tank (such a great price) for lounging around the hotel. I also saw this adorable white lace trim cami and thought it would be so fun with these high waisted jeans (which I bought at the shopbop sale). I also bought this gold cuff (on sale!) as a versatile piece to accessorize with.

A few other items that I think are super cute include this gingham tank (I think it would layer perfectly under a cardigan or denim jacket), awesome white body suit (love it tucked into high-waisted straight leg jeans), and this mauve colored longline cardigan (such a great price too!). I’ve had my eye on this adorable pink bomber jacket, and think it’s so fun for spring. Oh, and how adorable is this sweatshirt with the cascading ruffles on the sleeve??

I also came across some of the cutest kicks lately. These perforated platform ones are such a perfect option for spring… and I love this canvas pair in one of my favorite bands (and comes in so many different colors), as well as this mesh pair!

03.03.2017

Weekend Wear + Navigating Outings With Little Miss

So, before I became a mom, there were things I promised myself I would never do… and then I did some of them. Nothing major, you know…. things like “Oh, I’ll never change my child’s diaper in the car….” Yeah, that happens frequently. Or, that my house wouldn’t be a miniature Toys R Us…. yeah, I pretty much can’t keep track of Harper’s toys (and 90% of the times she chooses to play with items that aren’t even considered toys….). All that being said, I can only imagine all my “I will never’s…..” that are going to come crashing down around me as little miss moves further into toddlerhood. Given that, I’ve decided to dedicate today’s post to how I’ve been navigating being out and about with little miss in this new toddler stage……

1. Comfort: Always. My numero uno requirement for a day is that I can run and move in anything I wear. Which is why, for the most part, everything I share is just that (with a few exceptions for that special occasion). On days when we have nothing planned, I opt for tennis shoes, my favorite leggings, and a sweatshirt/hoodie of sorts (so easy to toss on and off….). A cap pulls it all together (well, actually, it pretty much just covers up hair that hasn’t been washed in 5 days…) and makes me feel cooler than I am….

2. Gear: While what I wear is important, what I bring is equally as paramount. Recently, we’ve been using this umbrella-like stroller. It’s not as small as a true umbrella stroller, which is nice…. and it’s definitely sturdier. Yet, it’s incredibly lightweight, collapses in one easy step, and has a good amount of storage for its size. We’ve taken it to the zoo, on our short weekend trips (perfect size for a hotel room), and to the park. It’s such an easy stroller to manage, and perfect for everyday. I’ve also been alternating between my favorite diaper bag (same brand option here) and this blush colored tote. The tote is incredibly spacious, and can hold a variety of items. I usually place my cell phone in the outside pocket, and my keys, wallet, and sunglasses in the interior pocket. It can fit diapers, wipes, a changing pad, lotions, snacks, sippy cups, a few toys, and a change of clothing (for both of us) easily (I also use it as a gym bag….).

3. Snacks: In all honesty, we don’t snack that much. I tend to use snacks as a great “distraction” option when we are out and about (of course, if she is hungry she can eat whenever!!). Yet, there are a few “treats” that I reserve for when we are out and about (i.e. at a restaurant, in the store, at the mall….). The ever popular puffs, in this little container, keep her occupied for quite sometime. I was asked which snacks I found to be successful in keeping little miss occupied. So far, I’ve found the aforementioned puffs, organic ritz-like-crackers (these things are her weakness…. I reserve them for those desperate situations…. because when they’re gone…. well, you can only imagine….), string cheese, and these little granola bars (I love these as an option!). She’s also a huge fan of Lara Bars, RX Bars, and Perfect Bars (like, she’s obsessed)!

4. Modify Expectations: I think without this ability, any outing will seem like a failure. Let’s be real. A long leisurely lunch just isn’t going to happen with a little one (and if you have them, please tell me your secret….). So, going into it with that expectation gives me a little bit of perspective. That being said, I try to bring novel toys when we go out to a restaurant. Something she doesn’t play with often, or hasn’t seen in a while, so that her attention will be slightly captivated by that toy. Sometimes we get the crayons and color with her (not that she does much coloring, but she does like to watch)…. and other times, one of us runs around with her a little bit outside before it’s time to eat (that way we all eat at the same time, and she releases some energy). Is that situation ideal? Not really, buuuuut, again, modify expectations. We also find that bringing a book to the restaurant, and actually reading it to her, can help……

The other day we were at the mall and this little boy was playing with his iPad in the stroller ahead of me in line. He was perfectly content, and the mom was the complete antithesis of frazzled. The much older lady in front of me turned around and stated, “What’s with parents and electronics these days?” I probably looked like a deer in headlights and didn’t really say much. I learned a while ago not to judge moms. We all have moments, we all have our way of doing things, and we all care about our children. That being said, I am not opposed to an iPad, or electronics, when out at a restaurant, traveling on an airplane (what would you prefer as a passenger??? A toddler running up and down the isles or one peacefully watching a cartoon?…..), or grocery shopping. I haven’t done it yet (I’m waiting for that day though….) and am a firm believer in moderation (hence, the premise of the blog). My child using a form of electronics once in a while is not going to do permanent damage to her social skills. There’s a time and place for everything, and every mom has to decide what that is for them……

Oh, we also try to choose places that are relatively kiddo friendly…. with the exception of our blunder here…..

5. Timing: When we head out, I’m always sure to schedule the outing immediately after a nap. That typically gives us ample time to do what we need to do, without the potential meltdown from fatigue.

As we go into the weekend, you can 100% guarantee we’ll be employing these techniques!! I hope you all have a great weekend! I’ll be sharing an instagram roundup of all my outfits tomorrow morning (a rare Saturday post!).
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{Outfit Details || Zip Up (comes in so many different colors ) | TankLeggings | Sneakers | Cap | Bag (c/o)(comes in 5 colors, such a great size!) | Stroller (c/o) | Harper’s Hoodie (similar)}