Saturday, February 21, 2015

Baby Ball #2: 11 weeks

Well, the news is out! We are indeed expecting a second little cutie pie in mid-September. I was hesitant to share the news before reaching that 12 week milestone, but after feeling sick and tired  exhausted, I was just ready to get the news out there. We have had two great visits to the doctor and are praying for another healthy pregnancy & baby!

I posted updates about every four weeks with Maleah and I'm really glad I did! Every now and then, I go back and read my entries and it brings back all sorts of memories from being pregnant with her! I am hoping to do the same with this little one!

So, to answer some of the initial questions:

- We are due September 13. I'm very excited about having a fall baby... except that it means I have to make it through the hottest time of year being super enormously pregnant! Thank God for air conditioning! Also it's early enough in the football season that it shouldn't interfere with any major games. Obviously that's a big priority around here! :) (Kidding!)

- I'll be 11 weeks tomorrow. We found out early this time - at 3w5d! It was January 3 - a Saturday - and I'd wanted to take a test earlier in the week, but decided it was too early. But I woke up that morning and just had the overwhelming urge to take a test! By about 9am, I had convinced Blake to go to the store (yes, by himself!) to get me a test. He did, I took it, it was positive! Yay! We went to the doctor that week for blood work and then for an ultrasound after 8 weeks. The baby measured right on track and it's heart rate was 168!

- Yes, I have been sick. I haven't been quite as sick as I was with Maleah but I'm not sure if that's just because I know how to manage it better or because I am not trying to be a super hero and I take 4 mg of Zofran every day. With Maleah, I was really sick. But since my first trimester came at a time when I was not working full-time, I didn't always take medicine because I could stay home and rest. However, since I'm working full time and chasing around a 2-year-old, I just really don't have time to be nauseated if I don't have to be! I can make it through the work day without feeling too sick until about 4pm - then the nausea hits again and I have a hard time eating dinner. But I'm making it.

- Things have been different. But not terribly different. I am WAY more exhausted than I remember being with Maleah. Probably, again, because I'm working and taking care of her. But I am just absolutely ridiculously exhausted. I am really hoping my energy will return in a few weeks! It would also be nice to not wake up 6 times a night to go to the restroom - SIX times a night, people! I do not remember my bladder being THAT active with Maleah!

- My appetite is actually good! Most days, I am able to eat fairly well. By "well" I mean, I can actually eat enough calories - not that I am always inclined to eat something healthy. Right now vegetables are not appealing unless they are bland (carrots and potatoes) or fried (okra). Meat is hit or miss - some days it doesn't bother me and other days it grosses me out.

- I haven't really had any tried and true cravings, but Blake says I definitely have had stronger preferences than normal. Some of the things I have really wanted recently: fried chicken, lemon flavored anything, and Fruit Loops. Not too sure if the Fruit Loops is a true craving or if it's just because it's the only cereal with flavor we have in the house!

- I mentioned in a Facebook status the other day that this new baby craves fried food and chocolate milk... so I guess maybe I have had some cravings! The fried food is probably just because I've been so queasy - for whatever reason it's a comfort food for me when my stomach is upset (seems counterproductive, I know). The chocolate milk thing does not surprise me - I love chocolate milk pregnant or not! But I'm waking up hungry in the middle of the night craving chocolate milk! I did it with Maleah, too, just not quite this early! 

- I am not showing really, but I can tell that I'm growing! I love the tangible evidence that there's a little life in there! But it made me realize I am going to need some new maternity clothes since most of my maternity wardrobe is for the dead of winter! Gee, I really hate that I will have to do some shopping!

- We are going to find out this baby's gender - hopefully in early/mid April. Right now, Blake thinks it's a girl. I kinda think it's a girl - I'm about 70/30 (I've already had a dream that she was a sweet little dark-headed newborn). Maleah's on the fence. Currently she has a "baby guhl" in her tummy. But sometimes her baby is a boy... I don't think she's had the anatomy scan yet. ;)

- And, yes, we have told Maleah - actually we told her right after we took the test! I mean, she's 2. She doesn't really understand it. And we weren't worried about her blabbing to anyone. But she has gotten really good at telling people what we're getting at our house ("BABY!!!!!!"). I think she's going to make an excellent big sister. She has already asked if she can feed the baby a bottle, put a blanket on the baby, and change the baby's diaper.

We are really excited about this new little one! We have been wanting to add to our family for quite a while, but knew it was all in God's timing. We are very grateful for this new life!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Weekend Wardrobe Update

I'm officially 19 days into my Capsule Wardrobe and so far, so good!!! I really wish I could give you a photo run-down of everything that's in my closet, but... I don't have the skills, the time, the energy, or the patience. Sorry! Maybe next week. Or next month. Or next lifetime. Seriously, though, I am trying to work on that for the Spring Capsule (which will start March 1).  But... I *have* been a little better about taking pictures of my outfits this week! 

The past two weeks have had crazy weather. One week it was bitterly cold. Then this past week, we had very mild weather. Definitely makes it challenging to dress appropriately! One thing I've found that helps is that the sweaters I own are quite light. Most of them are comfortable enough to wear even in 55-60 degree weather. And, on the days when it is super cold, I can either wear a long-sleeve shirt underneath or add a vest or my handy dandy denim jacket on top.

Something surprising I have learned this week is that even 50 pieces in my wardrobe is too much. Seriously. I really thought I was pushing myself with only 50 items, but there are things in my current capsule I don't even think I will wear during the next six weeks. I am actually going to pull a few more things and put to the side to see how few items I can actually manage during the time frame. I might even shoot for 40 pieces in my spring capsule!

The key is having several pieces that are very versatile. It can, of course, get boring to wear the same outfits all the time. But that is the point of this capsule wardrobe - you may have a limited selection of pieces, but because your pieces "go" together, you can work and re-work them multiple ways so that you wear them differently every time. 

My last little point this week is about color... for so long, I have felt like I needed to have something in just about every color to have a diverse wardrobe. I even bought tops in colors I hated (like yellow) simply because I felt like I needed to have them to complete my wardrobe. But, what I have found is that there are colors I'm really more drawn to and who cares if I wear them a lot!? And, I'm learning to put new colors together so that more of my outfits can go together. Orchid and navy? Would've probably never really tried it had I not done this capsule wardrobe. One of my favorite outfits this past week was a simple orchid stretch turtleneck with my navy faux-leather vest. So simple! I've really felt stretched the past two weeks branching out of my comfort zone, but so far... I'm feeling great about this project!!!

Without further adieu, here are a few outfits from the past week. Sorry if you follow me on Instagram and have seen these already!

Above: This is what I wore last Saturday to run errands. When I go out on Saturday mornings, I usually have not fixed my hair and I don't wear makeup. So wearing something a little more pulled together helped me feel... well... pulled together. Also, this was so comfortable! I hate you can't see the detail of the shirt - it's actually a baby pink thermal tee with some gold glittery flecks in it. Really cute!

Maleah gets her own spot in this post! I'm trying to pull my Capsule Wardrobe project into Maleah-land. It's hard because baby clothes are so cute and usually I can find "justifiable" deals. But, I'm really going to try to reign in my spending on her spring wardrobe. One of my favorite websites for her is Southern Tots. I would explain it to you here, but they do a much better job! This little outfit was $19 plus $6 for the monogram. NOT BAD AT ALL! Especially considering the pants can be worn with multiple outfits and the top will most likely still fit her next year! (And yes I have already let my child wear a Valentine's Day outfit!)

Okay, back to awkward me. This outfit was one of my favorites this week. Again, iPhone photos aren't great for capturing detail. The tunic is a a teal sweater tunic that's very form-fitting. I LOVE wearing it! And, again, the denim jacket... it's my comfort item. Teal is definitely becoming one of my staple colors. A lot of blue tones do not look good on me, but teal... teal hits the spot!

Hi, it's the black & white striped tunic again! I mentioned on my IG that I really feel like different shoes (cognac leather booties) would make this outfit pop. I almost bought some during the fall, but I'd already purchased 2 new pairs of shoes (the boots you see in the top picture and my black leather booties) and decided to wait on another new pair. But, even though I feel like this outfit is a little lacking, it is still a favorite.  Also, Maleah is wearing an outfit made by a lady from Facebook - Sew Adorable. Look her up. The ENTIRE outfit was $25. You cannot beat that.

That's all for me tonight! 

Until next time...

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Capsule Wardrobe Day #1 & Stitch Fix #1

Yesterday was a REALLY exciting day! I kicked off my capsule wardrobe with my first outfit of 2015 (I stayed in my PJs all day on the 1st, so that didn't count as an outfit!) AND my very first Stitch Fix box arrived!

Now, I am already disappointed in myself because I'm totally breaking bending a rule on the first day. But, to be fair, I kinda forgot my Stitch Fix box was coming! I set it up to come every other month, so when I scheduled it I wasn't really paying attention to the date. I'll set it to come again next month (instead of in March) so that whatever I purchase can go to my spring wardrobe. So... now that I've made my excuses... here goes the recap...

**BUT WAIT... lemme just say this - 1) We are using an iPhone, here. No fancy camera or equipment. And I'm not a model, so sorry for the lack of Anthro-esque photos. 2) We have like zero blank walls with good lighting, so in addition to pics of me awkwardly posing in outfits, you get a mini house tour!**

Up first is my inaugural Winter Capsule Wardrobe of 2015 ensemble. Look, I'm not going to be posting outfits every day so don't get your leggings in a bunch, okay? But it's THE FIRST DAY. I'm required by Social Media Law to post. When I do post, I want to give you an idea of where my items came from as well as the price but I'm not linking to every store or giving you look-a-likes if something I own is out of stock. As they say, I ain't got time for that. I'm just trying to give a real world view into building a wardrobe on a grad-student's-wife-and-toddler-mom's budget. 

This outfit is fo sho going to be a favorite in the coming weeks. The tunic came from James & Alma in Florence. It was a Christmas gift from my mother-in-law and was under $35. I love that it can be worn comfortably with leggings and flats or spruced up with tights and black booties! I have big plans for these here stripes! :) The leggings are my favorite ever - Lou & Grey from Ann Taylor Loft (usually $25, I got them 50% off - go me!). The belt is from Target ($17). And the shoes are Buddha black flats with a bow on the toe that you can't see because I'm wearing black socks because it was cold and rainy........ (shoes from Belk, 2012 - probably $50). 

I wore this outfit to CHOM with Maleah and it was so comfortable! The tunic is really stretchy and obviously leggings are like wearing pajamas! It was a really practical, cute outfit that you'll probably be seeing a lot more of. Ideally I would like a shoe that isn't black, but I don't have a ton of shoe options this go 'round... more on that in a later post.

Moving right along... let's talk STITCH FIX! Y'all. Two things real quick: 

1. Forgot it was coming so it was a total surprise!
2. EVERYTHING fit. THAT. NEVER. HAPPENS. I am short! I am petite! It is hard to find clothes that fit! But everything fit. It was amazing. The jeans were cut perfect for me... THAT NEVER HAPPENS! NEVER NEVER NEVER! Hope I got my point across!

Pieces 1 & 2: 

Ignore my hair... I napped on it before I took this picture. Also ignore the fact that I'm wearing the jeans. They were too comfy to take off:)

Oooooh, this navy & white dress (belt included) has me swooning! I am a sucker for polka dots. I love the fitted top and flouncy skirt too! This is something that could be worn a hundred ways. The material is very stretchy and comfortable - I could totally see myself wearing this while toting my kid around! It is really hard to find dresses that are made for moms to wear when they're actually with their kids, but this one hits the mark. It was the priciest item - $118 - but I thought that was very reasonable. I decided against keeping it because the pattern is too much of a repeat of what I already have in my wardrobe (hence the reason I love it... it is exactly what I would pick!). Oh! And, there is a gold zipper on the back that goes from the neck to the waist. So stinking cute. 

As for the necklace, I loved it! Me heart cranberry. :) But for $42, I just don't really need it. I want to wait to get some lighter colored jewelry for spring.

Pieces 3 & 4: 

What you see here is the perfect outfit for me. First, the top. It's actually a really lightweight knit material and feels like a super light, stretchy sweater. I love the heathered grey with the black stripe. Even though it seems very "me," I probably would not have tried this on at a store - it just seems too basic and I wasn't sure about the stripes on the arms. But, I'm glad I tried it on because I am keeping it {$48}! :) My style cards also showed this top being worn {tucked in} with a pencil skirt... WHICH I OWN. Boom, already have two outfits with one top.

And the jeans... THE JEANS. Y'all. They fit. Did I mention that never happens!? They fit perfectly. And they are SO COMFORTABLE! Almost as comfortable as leggings, which is really dangerous. I loved that they are faded black... apparently that is very "in" right now {at least that's what the young people tell me}. They run $88 - not bad for a good pair of jeans - but I just bought a pair of black jeans last month. I don't see me needing more than that right now!

The shoes are mine... Madden Girl black booties

Piece 5: 

There are two pieces of outerwear I love dearly in this world: Vests and all things quilted. So hellllloooooo amazing quilted-faux-leather-navy-blue vest!!!! Blake says I did back flips when I it. Not true, but if I could do back flips, I would have!!! I have been craving something with a leather look but haven't found anything I really liked... until Stitch Fix sent me this vest!!! I love the quilted pattern and gold zipper details. The sides have fabric panels that add just a little bit of "I'm not a biker chick". I was hesitant to keep this, but at the insistence of my husband (seriously, he talked me into it), I am keeping it. It's $78 - well worth it for something I did imaginary back flips for! 

So... I mentioned above that I'm bending one of my rules. I said I was not going to buy anymore clothes to add to my winter wardrobe. But I really forgot about my Stitch Fix box coming and I assumed my first box wouldn't have anything I liked anyway. So, no, I am not going to add to my wardrobe. I'm just going to switch out some items. I actually have a top and a vest that were in my plans that I'm going to switch out with these new pieces.

Both pieces I'm "retiring" have been around a while and I was going to let go of them anyway at the end of this season (the poor vest is getting strange stains I can't even identify!). So, I'll just do it sooner! I am going to keep the top in my transition box (for those "heftier" seasons of life) and the vest I will keep in an outerwear capsule for vacations and in case of the 48 hours Alabama might actually have snow (it's a really warm vest!). 

In my next post, I will outline in more detail what I have in this season's capsule. I would love to give you a photo gallery of everything that's in it, but... LIFE y'all. You'll just have to see it as it comes!