Entries in maternity (6)


39 weeks + a few pics from my mother/daughter maternity session

Happy Monday!  Taking a tiny break from all things interior decor and design this morning to gush over a couple of the maternity photos I got a little sneak peek of over the weekend!  I didn't do a session when I was pregnant with Lydia, which is crazy now that I think back on it, because we'd had such an incredibly difficult time getting pregnant with her, so this time around, I really wanted to capture a few images of these last few days of it just being me and my girl.  Of course, I waited until the eleventh hour and ended up having them taken the day before I hit 38 weeks, so they are even more special because we are so close now!

There were only a few images I had in mind that I really, really wanted; at the top of my list was a black and white silhouette from the side, something soft and ethereal.  Not only was my photographer amazing, but she blew me away with the few photos I've gotten to see so far; they are above and beyond what I ever could have expected!  If any of you have ever tried to have professional photos taken with a toddler, you know it can be a harrowing experience, so we opted to have an in-home session and let Lydia change into her favorite princess dress (once we got the goods in her real outfit). It totally worked out in our favor because she was so focused on being a "ballerina" that the shots my photographer ended up getting of her dancing are just as amazing as the maternity ones!

Choosing what to wear was easy, as I knew I'd need something snug/form fitting in order to get the silhouette shot, but I also wanted to be super comfy, too.  I wore my favorite Michael Stars maxi skirt and a white maternity tank top from Old Navy, both of which have been staples in my pregnancy wardrobe this summer.  I've been told a million times by photographers never to wear white, but I've always chosen it for photo sessions - white is gorgeous, and with the help of a little self tanner, I've never had any issue with looking washed out.  And Lydia just looks too heavenly in white eyelet to not dress her in it every chance I can get!

We didn't want to leave Daddy out, so we got some shots of baby girl and her main squeeze, can see my little princess ballerina takes it very seriously! This is exactly what it looks like around here after dinner these days....Lydia changing into one of her many princess dresses and getting Daddy to twirl and bow her all over the living room:

Of all the photo sessions we've done, these are some of my favorite pictures yet because they not only capture my complete adoration for my little miss, but also the love Lydia has for her daddy, and it also is a great reminder of a fabulous summer and the last few weeks of us being a family of three. My heart is so full already, that it's hard to believe how much more it will inevitably expand here shortly when baby bear makes his debut!  I hit 39 weeks on Saturday; we are in the final stretch! 

Happy Monday, everyone!


34 weeks

I know I sound like a broken record, but this pregnancy is flying by at the speed of light!  Last weekend, I hit 34 weeks and have officially been forced to slow it down a notch.  I've been going non-stop, as though a baby isn't going to be making its way out of my body in the next six weeks or so and even though there is so much yet to be done before my little bear makes his debut, I'm thankful for the change of pace.  Lately, I've been spending my days in the pool, watching movies and making popsicles with my little miss.  This time with just her is so bittersweet; I'm so excited to meet my little guy but I'm sad that the days of just my girl and I are numbered, so I'm soaking up every single minute!  Here are a few other things that have been making this stage of pregnancy a little more bearable lately:

I started showing a lot earlier this time around than I did with Lydia, so my plan of making it through the summer in maxi skirts and the few tanks I wore when pregnant last time went right out the window.  I am not a big fan of maternity clothing and personally hate to spend money on pieces that I'll be wearing for such a short period of time, but this bump is no joke, so a few weeks ago, I broke down and bought a few pieces to last me through the next month or so.  This maternity maxi tank dress from Old Navy is so comfortable, so soft and so flattering; it can be dressed up or down and is super lightweight.  My only complaint is that it only comes in black and charcoal - I wish it was available in more colors!

The heat and humidity has been making me nauseous, even though it seems like all I do all day is drink my weight in water and run back and forth to the bathroom to pee.  A nutritionist friend recommended trying this Ultima Replenisher Electrolyte Powder and it has been a GODSEND!  It's sugar free and all natural and completely got rid of my nausea! 

This Sally Hansen Airbrush Leg spray is a new favorite, too.  It's so much easier to apply than using a mitt and foam like I've been doing forever, it gives great color and comes off easily with soap and water. 

I tried this Jason Gentle Basics Facial Cleanser on a whim a few weeks ago after reading that it's free of chemical-laden ingredients that are present in so many other cleansers.  It's super gentle and the price can't be beat!

I'm all about bright, bold, coral/red nail colors lately (they look especially amazing with those fake tanned stems!) This summer I've been exclusively wearing Essie's Clambake

These all natural tropical papaya pills are still my go-to for indigestion, which thankfully doesn't happen that often anymore, but it's nice to have them handy when I need them.

What are some must-haves that have helped you in the last trimester?


pregnancy must-haves the second time around

This Saturday I will officially be seven months along in this pregnancy!  In some ways, it feels like I've been prego FOREVER and in others, it seems like time is flying by at the speed of light. I can feel panic slowly starting to creep in as I still have yet to make a decision for what I'm going to do in his nursery.  (Not to mention the fact that said "nursery" is still currently a guest bedroom jam-packed with furniture and an overflowing closet full of crap that I need to sort through!) And I wonder why I can't sleep at night!?

I had it made this point in my pregnancy with Lydia because the weather was cooler, whereas it's about to hit triple digits this weekend and I already want to stick a fork in my eye.  While there isn't much I can do about the weather, there are a few staples I've come to rely on this time around that help me feel and look a little more pulled together than I really am, so I thought I'd share some of my favorites! Even if you're not prego, all of these beauty picks are AMAZING!

Bareskin Complete Coverage Serum Concealer - this stuff is amazing at covering dark under eye circles, evening out skin tone and making you look like you got a full night's rest, even if you didn't.  I slather it under my eyes, around my nose and dab it on my chin and I feel like I look so much more fresh-faced!

Rosebud Salve - The pale pink tint adds just a dab of sheer color - I'm OBSESSED.

RMS Beauty Buriti Bronzer - all natural, non toxic and gives a beautiful, sheer bronze tint that makes you look like you've spent the day at the beach!

St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Mousse - there's nothing more flattering than a beautiful, (fake) bronzed glow on an ever-growing belly.  I've spent a small fortune trying self tanners over the years and this one has the most realistic color and doesn't smell.  This is another, more budget-friendly version that works well, too!

Living Proof Perfect Hair Day Dry Shampoo - Hands down, the best dry shampoo I've ever tried.  A little bit goes a long way and even for my fine hair, I can go three and sometimes four days without washing.  It also gives a little lift at the root!

Mother's Special Blend All Natural Skin Toning Oil - I swore by this for preventing stretch marks and easing itching as my belly grew when I was pregnant with Lydia and it's my go-to, once again.  I put it on as soon as I get out of the shower when my skin is still damp and it also works as a makeshift eye makeup remover when you're out!

CeraVe SPF 30 facial sunscreen - I'll lather sunscreen on my face, neck and chest until I look like Casper the friendly ghost, but I've learned over the years that, unless the active incredients are zinc and titanium dioxide, it's a waste of money.  This one by CeraVe is inexpensive, easily blends in and doesn't make my sensitive skin break out!

Tarte Inner Rim Brightener - This soft beige eye pencil works WONDERS for making you look bright eyed and busy tailed, even when you're far from it!  It's so much softer than the white pencils I've tried in the past and it makes your eyes look huge!

NanoThermic Contour Brush - This bad boy has cut the time it takes to blow dry my hair straight in half and some days, depending on how bad the humidity is, I don't even need to use a flat iron (which is really saying a lot for my naturally very curly hair!)  There's nothing I hate more than having to do my hair when I'm exhausted or have one million other things that need my attention, so this has been worth its weight in gold for me!

Having a pool in the backyard has never been more of a saving grace - not only do little miss and I exhaust ourselves out back every day until our fingers and toes prune, but it's been a great way for me to get low-impact exercise in while she plays.  I run back and forth in the shallow end (it's harder than it sounds!), swim laps and tread water in the deep end with my arms above my head.  It definitely helps me feel reinvigorated and, I'm hoping, it helps with the vein that is threatening to bulge at the back of my right thigh! 

I a compression stocking by 2XU on my right leg and use short blade swim fins like these when I swim for a little more oomph for my workout.  I swam competitively for years growing up, so I'm all about using fins to make my workout go a little further!

What are some things you couldn't live without during your pregnancy??







it's a boy!

For the last three years, since we found out we were pregnant with Lydia, around our house it's been nothing but tutus, hair bows and all things gold and glittery, but it's time to switch gears now because we are having a BOY!!  I grew up with two brothers and so did my husband so we are overjoyed at the thought of Lydia having a little brother of her own!  I'm so excited to get my head in nursery mode again, too!  I'm 25 weeks, officially in my third trimester, so I need to get it in gear. We've known for quite a while now that we were having a boy but now it's time to get serious about planning his nursery and stockpiling clothes and blankets - I don't have a single swaddle, onesie, burp cloth, bib or blanket for the little guy that isn't pink or covered in hearts, haha!

This pregnancy has gone so fast - thankfully, the nausea and vomitting is long gone.  Now, the only pain in the neck is the fact that I have to wear a full length compression legging on my one leg; working out has helped tremendously but I can't go an entire day without it, so I'm mentally preparing myself to make it through a Carolina summer without having a heatstroke! 

As for the nursery, I don't have a plan as of yet like I did when I was pregnant with Lydia, but I know there are certain things I want to incorporate that have lots of meaning (like my hubby's passion for surfing and his Marine Corps background).  I'll be posting inspiration and plans and progress along the way, so get ready for some nursery overload! 

I hope you're all having a wonderful week!


pregnancy survival guide: 10 things I couldn't live without

It's hard to believe that my baby girl is already nine weeks old today!  Being pregnant feels like a lifetime ago, really.  When I announced my pregnancy, I promised not to turn this into an all-things-baby blog and, aside from a few nursery progress posts, I've really tried to stick to that. But today I thought I'd share a few of the things that were part of my routine while I was pregnant, all of which I certainly couldn't have made it through without:

Stretch marks are, unfortunately, genetic, so if your mom got them during pregnancy, chances are good that you could get them, too.   My mom never did and, lucky for me, I didn't either, but as my bump started to grow, my skin itched so bad it burned!  If you give in to the urge to scratch, you can cause stretch marks.  This oil was the ONLY thing that soothed my skin; I covered my chest and bump after every shower and whenever the urge to itch got really bad and I've used it after giving birth, too.  It's AMAZING!!! 

I got plenty of advice from everyone about everything under the sun during my pregnancy, but the one thing no one ever warned me about was the lack of circulation in my legs and how painful that would be.  These athletic recovery sleeves worked wonders...and were sometimes the only thing getting me past 3 pm on most work days.

It wasn't until I hit the second trimester that I started feeling like absolute crap.  The best way I could describe it would be a bloating, constipated feeling (even though I was neither) and these all-natural, organic, gluten-free chewable wafers were the only thing that helped bring relief-they really are amazing!  I've been told they also help with indigestion and heartburn, too, even though I never experienced that. 

My best friend gave me a tube of Lucky Legs very early on in my pregnancy and it quickly became my salvation in a bottle at the end of long work days!  Rapid relief for tired, heavy legs, it makes your skin feel amazing! I would lather it on before bed or laying down to watch TV at night and it made my skin tingle.  Also great for hubbies to rub onto your poor feet at the end of the day, too!

There are so many benefits to starting your day with a cup of hot water and lemon every morning - it boosts your immune system, flushes out unwanted toxins and hydrates and oxygenates your body, to name a few, but for me, drinking a cup first thing every morning helped with nausea, feeling of fullness and getting everything moving that day.

Pregnancy hormones can wreck havoc on your skin - you either have that "glow" or you don't. I tried to stick to using face washes and lotions that were completely organic and natural and I happened to love this face scrub powder by One Love Organics; I added a little bit to my Cetaphil cleanser every morning and my skin was radiant!

I lived in maxi skirts, maternity tanks and a vintage denim jacket - rain or shine, even when the temps dipped!  The skirts were so comfy, and actually hid the fact that I wore a recovery stocking on my left leg so well. It's all about being comfortable!

I picked up a pot of this watercolor cheek gel on a stop in Sephora at the suggestion of one of the sales girls and I can't tell you how much I love this.  Not only is it all natural, but it gives your cheeks a fresh-off-the-beach flush! I got a million compliments on my "pregnancy glow", but it really was right out of a pot!

What are some of the things that helped you through your pregnancy?  I'd love to know!