Style challenge (week three) - what I wore this week

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

To say I have been a basketcase this past week or so would be an understatement. It would seem that mini-me is having a sleep regression. Fun stuff. That combined with my return to work and struggle to find some kind of balance (for the record, I haven't found it yet) has led to me being slightly frazzled the majority of the time.

People keep telling me I'll find a groove. I am patiently waiting.

Thankfully, I'm doing the style challenge which has taken the guesswork out of getting dressed in the morning. Whew. One less thing to think about means I'm less likely to forget something important (like putting on deodorant or brushing my teeth). I can't even begin to consider how I'm going to get myself ready in the morning without a picture the night before of what I'm supposed to look like. Anyone wanna be my personal stylist?? No?

So here's what I've been wearing:

I am loving these red pants and it would seem that I'm subbing them for the white pants in this challenge. Red just seems safer to me. I can spill more on myself and sit in more without people really noticing. White pants are much less forgiving.
Old navy everything except the shoes!

I didn't love this outfit looking at myself in the mirror but I got a few compliments both from coworkers as well as fellow style challengers. I don't feel the cardigan is super flattering with the skirt but I was comfy all day so that's a win in my book! Who needs yoga pants when you have a comfy maxi skirt?
Cardigan: Old Navy, tank: Old navy, necklace: Joe Fresh, skirt: Winners, shoes: Payless (dexflex)

I functioned on VERY little sleep on Saturday (thank you mini-me). If I wasn't dressed by someone else I likely would have remained in the pjs from the night before.
Scarf and blouse: Joe Fresh, jeans: Mavi, shoes: Aldo

WHITE PANTS!!!!!!!!! I DID IT! Fashion milestone for me. I'm so proud of myself for not sitting in something hideous. Now the big test: can I repeat?
Blouse: Joe Fresh, necklace: already owned, jeans: Winners (Jones New York), shoes: Payless

I didn't do laundry on the weekend due to a sleepless child and lack of motivation. I stood in my closet dumbfounded (this is what happens without the style challenge). This is what I ended up in. Meh.
Cardigan: Old navy, tank: Winners, necklace: Target, jeans: Joe Fresh, shoes: Shoe company (Blowfish)


Today marks day 17.... only 4 more days left :( Seriously, what the heck am I going to do when this is done? I need a personal stylist. And cleaner. And laundry folder. And dinner maker... etc etc. Oh and to win the lottery to pay or all these. 

Once again, linking up with some fellow challengers! They have been rocking ALL the outfits (and I may be stealing a few of their looks for later ;)

I'm also linking up with The Pleated PoppyGet Your Pretty On and Musings of a Housewife so make sure to check them out too!

Deena @ Shoes to Shiraz

Jordan @ Just Jordan

Shaunacey @ Confessions of a Frumpy Mummy

 Katie @ The Mishaps and Mayhem of Solitary Life

 Beth @ Fast Life Slow Life

 Vanessa @ X-tremely V

 Anne-Michelle @ May We Be Allergy Free
 Teresa @ Two Babies and Me
 Sarah @ Foxy's Domestic Side

Carrie @ A Lovely Little Wardrobe

 Carly @ Faith Family and Frugality

Lana @ Two Teens and Their Mama

Have a great Wednesday!

getting my A$$ kicked

Monday, April 28, 2014

I want to blog. I want to read blogs.
I want to take time and write something thoughtful, true and somewhat funny. I don't have the time.

I want to sit down for 5 min and not know I could/should be doing something else (folding the MASSIVE pile of clean laundry in the laundry room, putting away dishes, washing the floors, dusting etc etc etc).

Being a working mom is freaking kicking my ass.

Seriously, who on earth is able to balance everything? Not only do I feel like Monday to Friday is a nonstop rush, I feel like I'm not doing anything well. I don't have enough time to make proper food, to spend quality time with mini-me or Mr. B, and I'm so tired that I feel like I am a space cadet at work.

I've been told "you'll find your groove". Well, week 2, day 1 and I'm not feeling very groovy. As a matter of fact, I feel like I got hit by a truck (mini-me's party from 1-4am may be factor here).

Will I really find a groove? Or will being in a rush become the new norm?

This is more of a rant than anything. I KNOW I need to try and find the time on the weekend to prepare for the week. I need to menu-plan, meal-prep, clean and do laundry and do whatever else I can't manage to do during the week. But I wanna have fun on the weekends darnit! I want to spent time with mini-me and Mr. B and ENJOY it.

Bedtime for me, as I'll likely be an unwilling participant in a party starting at approximately 1am. Weird, all night parties just don't sound fun anymore...

Dear sleep: I miss you more than you'll ever know.
Dear mini-me: you're so lucky you're stinkin' cute.

P.S. If any of this doesn't make sense, I blame lack of sleep. It's a legit excuse and is messing with my mind. For real. Crazy? Don't mind if I do.

me looking tired and angry... must have more caffeine!

happy blog-iversary to me!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

So today marks one whole month of blogging for me!

I wasn't sure where I was going with this when I started. I had hopes that starting this blog would help me change my frumpy ways or at the very least motivate me to try and look a little more put together. I knew I wanted a place where I was semi-accountable for the way I looked. I have to say, so far, so good!

Here are a few things I didn't anticipate:

Blogging is a great outlet - after a sleepless night (thank you mini-me, lucky you're super cute) and a long day at work, it's so nice to be able to sit down and write about whatever. OR, if I don't feel like writing, I can read what everyone else has to say!

New friends - I've found some AMAZING women since I started blogging! I started reading new blogs and met some amazing people. I joined Alison's Style Challenge and met even more great women. I also joined some linkups (didn't know what that was a month ago) which led me to even more wonderful women bloggers! I have found some GREAT blogs that I can't wait to read!

Confidence boost - some very sweet readers have said some very kind things about my blog and my outfits. It feels great, when you've been living in pajamas for the better part of a year, to hear that people think to look great. Thank you!

Going out of my comfort zone - I've been wearing things I normally wouldn't even consider i.e. statement necklaces AND WHITE PANTS!!!!!! Yes folks, in honor of my one month blog-iversary AND because the style challenge told me to, I WORE WHITE PANTS TODAY! I am happy to report that I didn't sit in chocolate, spill coffee on myself, or squirt ketchup everywhere. Go me! I may even consider wearing them again!

A few (very sweet) people have commented how 'not frumpy' I am. Here's the thing: that's the point. This blog was the kick in the yoga pants I desperately needed. I am counting on it (and you) to keep me out of my yoga pants and in things I look and feel good in.

On that note, I'm going to continue to blog about my struggle to stay out of yoga pants (unless I'm doing yoga of course) but I am also hoping to add some more parenting, lifestyle and health and wellness stuff into the mix!

Until next time...

my favs this week (April 25, 2014)

Friday, April 25, 2014

Before I get to my favs this week I will let you know it was really really challenging to not just put 100 pictures of coffee and call it a day.

My first week of work (and thankfully it was only a 4 day work-week) and mini-me has a cough/cold and has been getting up EVERY night. I have loved coffee this week. AND my bed, even though I haven't spent enough time there.

Enough complaining... here are my favs this week

  1. Crockpot/Slow cooker - this is the one I have, but I will likely be trading it in for a digital one in the near future (as this is quickly going to become my new BFF). Apparently when you're working, you have VERY little time to actually prepare food. From the time my job ends (5ish) it's rush rush rush until bedtime. This week has been chaos and the only reason I've retained any sanity (although how much I've retained is debatable) is because I used the crockpot two days for meals. Either this continues to be a fav of mine or I hire a personal cook. I think I'll have an easier time convincing Mr. B I need a digital crockpot over a personal cook. For now.
  2. Mini eggs - truth of the matter, it's a love hate relationship. I LOVE mini eggs but hate myself a wee bit after eating WAY too many of them. I am a little relieved Easter has passed because I cannot walk by a stand of these babies without buying a bag (or three).
  3. Dishwasher - I won't lie, I've always loved having a dishwasher BUT I'm particularly in love with this one. It is SOOOOO quiet AND I've gotten into the habit of throwing every single thing in there. I heard somewhere it's more energy efficient to use the dishwasher as opposed to actually washing dishes. I may have made that up to rationalize throwing pots and pans in there but I'm somewhat confident there is some truth to this. Either way, that's my story and I'm sticking to it!
  4. Dexflex nude flats (Payless) - I've been reticent to buy shoes with "comfort" in the title for fear of them being "old lady shoes". Don't pretend you don't know what I'm talking about. BUT I LOVE these! I got them in nude and they are so comfortable but still super cute. PLUS, I got them quite cheap. I'm using all my restraint not to go back and buy them in every color.
  5. Essie Turquoise and Caicos - love Essie polish in general because it's easy to use and dries pretty quick. I have lots of Essie polish but I bought this last summer and it's still my fav (and I renewed my love with it this week). So fun and springy but not florescent so I don't look like I'm trying too hard to look younger than I am.
  6. Musings of a Housewife - being new to the blog-scene, I'm always looking for new blogs to follow. Some I like and some I LOVE! This is one of my new loves. Jo-Lynne is super cute but also real and relate-able. I love that about her. She posts a lot about style and food but her blog really covers everything.  Also, she was super sweet on a recent post of mine so clearly that made me love her even more. I think it's awesome when popular bloggers take the time to interact with their readers!
  7. Blistex - confession: I'm a chapstick addict. This has been my saving grace in our super dry office this week. I am not overly happy that I've had to rely on this all week BUT happier than I'd be without it.
  8. Striped maxi skirt - I was reluctant about the maxi skirt because I'm not tall and I feel like they make me look wide. It took trying on a few to find one I liked and it's one of my new favorite pieces of clothing! It's so comfy (feels like wearing pjs) and I've gotten soooo many compliments that it's hard not to feel great when I wear it. My exact skirt is from Winners but similar ones are here and here and here.

Style me challenge (week two) - what I wore this week

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I'm still loving the Style Me Challenge (details here) but I've deviated from the selected outfits quite a bit for various reasons (probably more than I should).

I won't provide all the juicy deets of the list but I will tell you that white pants are on it. They have been suggested 2 or 3 times and I haven't worn them once. I did buy a pair, that's half the battle, right? One day....

Make sure you check out the links at the bottom of my fellow challengers - they've likely followed the daily outfit suggestions much closer than I have and look super cute doing it!
I'm also linking up with The Pleated PoppyGet Your Pretty On and Musings of a Housewife so make sure to check them out too!

Also, I'm realizing my blog would be a lot more aesthetically appealing if, instead of selfies, I had a personal photographer. Alas, Mr. B is crap at taking pictures (he can't focus to save his life) and I don't think he'd spring for a photographer to follow me around (I know! The injustice).

Without further adieu, here's what I wore this past week:

My first day back at work after a YEAR off. Ugh. The good news: I at least felt like I looked okay (even though my heart was aching to be home with my baby girl). Truthfully, we all made it through the day and this frumpy mommy didn't feel frumpy at all. I also got some much needed adult conversation.

scarf: Old Navy, chambray shirt: H&M, pants: Old Navy, shoes: Lord and Taylor (the Bay)

Good Friday, and what a good Friday it was. Felt comfy but springy and ready to hunt for eggs and meet the Easter bunny. Good times had by all! Too bad I didn't actually do my hair. Can't win 'em all I guess. Style challenge win: Mr. B commented how quick I got ready while looking "stylish"! Wow.
scarf: Old Navy, cardigan: Gap, jeans: Mavi, shoes: payless (dexflex), t-shirt: Marshalls

jacket: RW&co (last year), purse: Coach, sunglasses: Ray Ban

This maxi skirt freaked me out but I LOVED wearing it! So comfy but still felt put together and I loved the way it looked with a bright tank. Be prepared to see a very similar (read: the same) outfit in the near future.
necklace: Target, tank: H&M, jacket: Gap (circa 10 years ago-ish), skirt: Winners, shoes: Payless

For whatever reason, I don't love this shirt, but it worked for a day at the park and chilling in the sunshine. Normally on a day like this I would have opted for yoga pants and a t-shirt. I'm confident in saying I felt and looked much better in this. 

shirt: Tommy Hilfiger, necklace: Joe Fresh, jeans: Old Navy, shoes: Payless

Okay, I'm not exactly fashionista material. I'm over it. Was comfortable for my day at home on Monday and I love this scarf so much. The colors are my awesome!
shirt: H&M, scarf: can't remember (sorry), jeans: American Eagle, shoes: Toms

cutie pie: mom and Mr. B

Truth be told, I took this pic after the fact. I didn't follow the recommended outfit too closely (it called for white pants and we know how I feel about that). Tuesday was my second work day but felt like the first and had disaster written all over it. Work was busy, the evening was chaotic and it's a miracle I made it through the day without a huge meltdown. I do need to give a big HOLLA to any and all working moms who manage to feed their families, themselves, get everyone to bed and remain sane. I have no idea how the F I'm going to do this.
jeans: Jacob, shoes: Payless, sweater: Target, scarf: Walmart

I actually followed instructions today! GO ME! I'm realizing that it's WAY easier to get dressed in the morning when someone tells you what to wear. Any volunteers to do this once the challenge is done? Come on, you'll be doing this stressed working momma a huge solid! 
cardigan: Gap, shoes: Lord and Taylor (the Bay), jeans: Mavi, shirt: Marshalls, bracelet: RW&co

There it is folks!!! Make sure you check out my friends below to see how they interpreted the challenge this week! 

Deena @ Shoes to Shiraz

Jordan @ Just Jordan

Shaunacey @ Confessions of a Frumpy Mummy

 Katie @ The Mishaps and Mayhem of Solitary Life

 Beth @ Fast Life Slow Life

 Vanessa @ X-tremely V

 Anne-Michelle @ May We Be Allergy Free
 Teresa @ Two Babies and Me
 Sarah @ Foxy's Domestic Side

Carrie @ A Lovely Little Wardrobe

 Carly @ Faith Family and Frugality

Lana @ Two Teens and Their Mama

Have a great Wednesday!

Lessons from my first year of motherhood

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

A year ago today, I became a mom. I could go on and on about how mini-me has changed my life and how amazing she is BUT I'll save that for my other blog.

Despite all the warm and fuzzy stuff, this past year has not been without it's challenges and from challenges come lessons. I have learned a lot. There are a lot of things I said I would do, said I wouldn't do, thought I'd be. Before you have a baby, you have this idea of what kind of parent you'll be and, if you're at all like me, you get pretty into detail about what you think this will look like. And then you have the baby and it all goes flying out the window (or at least that's what happened in my case).

Lessons from my first year of motherhood

  1. Sleep training is NOT the devil - this is a VERY controversial topic so I'll try and keep this brief. I said, and with good reason, that I would NEVER let my baby cry. Ever. We got to about 9 months and I was a disaster. Mini-me had gone from our bed, to her crib and was back into our bed. She would only go to sleep with me, breastfeeding, and I literally NEVER got anytime to myself (she was also still refusing a bottle at that point). I was irritable, miserable and lonely. I never got any time with Mr. B or by myself. Something HAD to happen. We agreed to try sleep training. To be VERY clear: she was never left crying inconsolably. She seemed to need a few minutes to whine while she was getting comfortable and then out like a light. She's a great sleeper now and as soon as we got into the pattern, her and I were both significantly more happy. It was a necessary thing for us but it's not for everyone (and some babies don't calm after a few min, in which case, I don't even know what you do!). Be open to different things and hopefully you'll find something that works. Being miserable is NOT a good way to live!

  2. The Wonder Weeks are REAL - I bought this book early on with heavy skepticism. To this day, I'm still not sure if it is scientifically accurate in predicting "fussy" periods or if I just found it convenient to have something to read that justified my stress at any given moment. Either way, I did really like the book and found it helpful. If anything, it helped me feel normal if I ever struggled with behavior, fussiness, lack of sleep etc.

  3. Napping isn't always easy - please tell me I'm not the only one who seriously thought babies napped all the time. Frigging IDIOT. Mini-me has JUST recently (yup, after almost a year) started napping somewhat consistently. I struggled HARD with naps. Some days I actually thought I might pull my hair out because I just wanted 10 minutes by myself to shower or sit and have a coffee. Not all babies are good nappers and it SUCKS when they aren't. You'll also do just about anything to get your baby to sleep. I can't even begin to consider the mileage and gas money spent trying to get mini-me to nap. On a positive note: I've perfected the silent ninja walk which will surely come in handy should I decide to switch careers and become a spy.

  4. There is no worse feeling than accidentally hurting your child - I won't get into the big story (because I'm still scarred for life) but when mini-me was about 6 months old, I zipped up her skin in a vest. It was a big chunk of her skin and she still has a scar. I feel sick even re-typing it. It was an awful accident but I was shaken to the core. She forgave me very quickly but I can't say I was so kind on myself (I still feel a pang of guilt whenever I see that scar and it will haunt me forever). It was an accident. Accidents happen and in hindsight it was pretty minimal but that feeling, the feeling that I had hurt her. Words can't even describe. Moral of the story: be careful, but if you do accidentally hurt your little one, you'll be way more upset with yourself than they ever will be.

  5. You're going intend to do a lot of things that you don't - this may just be me, but I had said I was going to do lots of things and never found the time (yes, despite being off an entire year). I had hoped to cloth diaper. I even bought the start of a collection. And then she arrived along with a lot of gifted disposable diapers. Needless to say, the cloth diapers got sold on kijiji and never saw mini-me's behind. Doesn't mean I'm a crap mom, but once I got used to the disposables I just never started the cloth. Maybe next time. I also intended to make ALL of her baby food. I made a bunch of it, but the convenience of jarred food won the battle more than a few times. Another thing I fully intended on was not allowing mini-me to watch tv. Yeah right. I don't let her watch all day, every day, but sometimes I put on the cartoon channel because I need to sit and have a coffee, or make dinner, or throw in a load of laundry. I am now confident that a few episodes here and there of Bubble Guppies is not going to rot her brain (it's quasi-educational at times and they are kinda cute - ya, I'm rationalizing). Luckily, she said mom, dad and doggy before "bub bub" (yes, that stands for Bubble Guppies, judge away). She survived and it made my life easier. The world didn't end and it doesn't mean I'm a bad parent. It just means, for whatever reason, it didn't happen. No point in crying over it now.

  6. If someone offers to babysit, LET THEM - I was am the worst at this. Mini-me has rarely been cared for outside Mr. B and myself. I can now say I truly should have let other people watch her more often. Not even just to get her used to not having us with her but because I needed time to myself to just be myself in a setting outside of my mom role. Also, because Mr. B and I needed time to be a couple and not just a couple of parents. We could have used more date nights but thankfully, now that mini-me is a better sleeper, we actually get to spend time together in the evenings.

  7. Everyone and their mother (and especially your mother) will offer unsolicited advice - some of it is good, some of it is bad, most of it is just plain unwarranted. People usually have good intentions and are trying to be helpful. It gets annoying. Listen, follow if you like but at the end of the day you have to do what is right for you and for your family. Also, try not to punch people, that is discouraged.

  8. Find some good mom-friends - I was beyond fortunate that my best friend had a baby just over a month before me. I also have a great online group of moms AND a local group I met up with regularly. It sounds excessive, but I couldn't have made it through the year without ALL of them. Sometimes, you really just need someone to tell you that you're not going crazy, or it's okay to want to punch your husband (no matter how sweet), or cry out of pure exhaustion. Mommy friends (the good kind, not the judgmental competitive kind) are KEY to sanity in the first year!!!!!!
  9. You get through it, you just do - obvious for anyone who has been there, but only something you can see in hindsight. There were moments where I literally thought "I'm not sure I can do this" but you do. You just do. Those moments are a vague memory now (until the next one anyways) and like everything else, the moments pass. 

    Bottom-line - I did a lot of things I said I wouldn't, didn't do a lot of things I said I would. I got frustrated, I cried, I let her cry, and some days I really thought and felt like I was a shit mom. None of that actually made me a bad mom. It made me normal. It still makes me normal because it will continue to happen. You do the best you can as much as you can. I'm not the best mom in the world, but I'm doing alright. Some days I feel like a rockstar mom, others I feel like I'm not cut out for this. What I'm realizing is that's the nature of the job.

    **this post may contain affiliate links - if you make a purchase through the links I may be compensated**

    sunny spring days

    Sunday, April 20, 2014

    There's just something about sunny spring days. You know, the ones where it's finally warm enough to go outside without a jacket (or borderline, but you don't wear a jacket anyways just because you've been wearing one for way too many months). Those days, when you are used to snow, cold, rain and just plain miserable weather, and then the sun comes out.

    Today was one of those days. The sun was shining, the neighborhood children littered the streets on new bikes and playing with whatever new toys the Easter bunny brought them. Cars were being washed, garages cleaned, gardening and drinks being had on patios. It was gorgeous day.

    Our family had their Easter dinner yesterday so today was just mini-me, Mr. B and I (and Lilo of course). It was a great day. Mini-me went to the park for the first time (it's been a crap winter here) and seeing the utter joy on her face as she slid down the slide and swung in the swing, was the best part of any spring day I have ever experienced. 

    I am praying that this winter has had enough of us and that we enjoy many more days like (and warmer than) today. Nothing improves my mood more than being able to spend some time outside with my family in the warm sunshine!

    Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend and got at LEAST one sunny spring day that you got to enjoy with your family! xo

    **I try and save the majority of my cheesy mom stuff for my other blog (here) but sometimes I just can't contain it all to one place. How could I? Did you see that face?

    my favs this week (April 18, 2014)

    Friday, April 18, 2014

    Right at this very second, my favorite is anything that isn't a screaming child. I don't even know what is happening right now.

    But as for the week, here are a few of my favs:

    1. Dyson animal vacuum - okay, my love for this is nothing new, but it's new to all of you. Also, it's that wonderful time of year again where our beautiful golden retriever, Lilo, loses what I'm sure is his ENTIRE coat on the daily. Thank the goodness for this vacuum, it keeps the dog hair tumbleweeds to a minimum (well, if I use it daily). Also, the first time I used this on our area rug, I honestly felt like the dirtiest person alive. No matter how clean you are, it will find dirt and make you wonder how you've been living with all that stuff in your carpet. 
    2. Clinique liquid face wash - I'm weird about face wash for some reason. I find the majority of them don't actually make my face feel clean. No matter how much makeup I've put on my face, this seems to get it all off. Since I've been bestowed with pretty sensitive skin, I'm careful about what products I use. This cleans without irritating. 
    3. Haan multi-steam mop - yes, there is a cleaning theme and I can blame this one on Lilo too. Not only is he losing his hair on the regular, he's also tracking in mud like it's no one's business. Enter steam mop. It's quick and keeps the floors sanitary (mini-me will eat absolutely anything off of the floor and I may or may not have fed her goldfish off the floor while I was trying to make dinner - don't worry, I had used the steam mop first). 
    4. Chapman's vanilla ice cream - or any vanilla ice cream (this has just been my particular drug of choice this week). I HATE having leftover ice cream after a birthday party and I truly wish I was able to throw it out instead of eating it all. Particularly, because we actually forgot to bust out the ice cream at mini-me's birthday party, requiring me to eat ALL the ice cream by myself. I loved it but hated it (you know what mean).
    5. Leopard print flats - I searched high and low for these freaking shoes! I can't even find them anymore but my specific ones are Lord and Taylor that I got a GREAT deal on ;) They look cute with so many things (especially my red pants!) and are so comfy. Plus, every time I've worn them I've gotten compliments. Go me!

    6. Hair donut - you can pretty much buy these anywhere. I've had one for about two years and until recently, hadn't a clue what to do with it (but, like the hoarder I am, couldn't bring myself to throw it out). Enter youtube. I watched a few quick tutorials and now the donut is my go-to when I don't have time to do my hair and don't want to rely on a ponytail (my fine hair in a ponytail is just not fashionable - it's like a little rat-tail, not cool). Now, I just need my hair to be a little longer as I'm pretty sure you're NOT supposed to actually see the donut ;) Mini-me has lots of hair, maybe I can borrow some of hers.
    7. Floral scarf - floral scarves are popular right now but I'm specifically in love with this one because the colors are PERFECT! It literally goes with almost every outfit I own. Warning: you may see a number of repeat appearances from the aforementioned scarf. I. Can't. Stop. Wearing. It.

    Okay the screaming has stopped. Unfortunately, mini-me is sleeping on Mr. B on the couch rather than in her crib *sigh* I think coffee is going to be my fav tomorrow. Tim Horton's, here we come!

    Check out the link below for some budget friendly finds!
    Style Elixir

    Fashion Friday Linkup - check out Musings of a Housewife for her take on white pants (which still terrify me by the way).

    Style Me Challenge - what I wore this week

    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

    In an effort to bring some more style into my life, I joined a "Spring Style Challenge" hosted by Alison @ Get Your Pretty On. I've mentioned Alison and her blog before in my favs. I found her literally by searching "popular mom fashion blogs" and I'm soooo happy I did! It's a great blog, with amazing tips and great style ideas. Another bonus, Alison is so friendly and down to earth! She really interacts with her readers (more so than any other blog I've been reading).

    Back to the challenge: you pay a small fee ($10) and she sends you a list of items (I think there were 18). Most of the items are things many of us already have (i.e. white t-shirt, dark skinny jeans) and includes shoes and accessories. She sends you the list and then you have 10 days to shop your closet, the mall, online or whatever (I may or may not have bought a new everything. Don't tell Mr. B).

    Then the fun begins. Every night for 21 days, you get an email with a styled outfit for the following day. This is awesome for a number of reasons, but mainly it takes the guesswork out of getting dressed in the morning (am I the only one guilty of standing in a closet FULL of clothes and not being able to piece together a single outfit?!). It is perfect for working moms or anyone without a lot of free time to outfit plan or who would just rather someone else do it for them (I'm returning to work this week so I'm going to be relying heavily on Alison to dress me!).

    There's an awesome Facebook group of participants posting their outfits and most of us have already made changes to the suggestions but it's great because it gives so many ideas for future outfits.

    So on Wednesdays for the rest of the challenge, I'll be linking up with some amazing ladies in the group (see below) so you can see how we each interpreted the outfits (based on what we each have/bought etc.).

    Here's what this week looked like:

    I changed a few things from the recommended outfit (i.e. NO white pants - for now). Also, going back to work later this week, I wanted to keep my distressed jeans on as long as possible!

    Tuesday and Wednesday
    Okay, you caught me, I'm cheating. I didn't ACTUALLY wear the following two outfits. Well, I guess technically I did for the time it took me to take pics. Mini-me came down with a double ear infection Tuesday which involved a lot of crying (from her and I both), a trip to the clinic, and yoga pants and a sweatshirt. 
    I was feeling out of the loop today so I put together the outfits I would have worn had I been able to leave the house. I get bonus points for trying, right?

    See bottom right pic? WTF, new GAP cardigan has a hole after 1 wash - insert sad face here ___

    Also, see how I'm wearing wedges? That's a joke! We got a few inches of snow yesterday and there's no way on earth I'd be wearing those out of the house right now. 

    For real
    Okay, this is a more accurate depiction of what I've looked like Tuesday and today. Like my little accessory? Apparently she's decided I need to be wearing her constantly. Whatever takes away from my lack of makeup ;) She may be the cutest accessory I've got!

    Here's the list of lovely ladies I'm linking up with. Check out their outfits, I already have seen most of them and they ROCKED it this week!

    Deena @ Shoes to Shiraz

    Jordan @ Just Jordan

    Shaunacey @ Confessions of a Frumpy Mummy

    Katie @ The Mishaps and Mayhem of Solitary Life

    Beth @ Fast Life Slow Life

    Vanessa @ X-tremely V

    Anne-Michelle @ May We Be Allergy Free
    Teresa @ Two Babies and Me
    Sarah @ Foxy's Domestic Side

    Carrie @ A Lovely Little Wardrobe

    Carly @ Faith Family and Frugality

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    things I learned from mini-me's birthday party

    Tuesday, April 15, 2014

    Preview of Cake Smash done by our awesome photographers

    There will be a picture-laden entry (oh fine, I'll post a few now) about the party at some point (read: whenever the new camera USB cord arrives - I may or may not have lost the other one somehow) but for now, here are some things I learned from mini-me's party:

    1. Mini-me not only has a cuter, but a much larger spring wardrobe than I do - also, it is OKAY to covet your child's wardrobe. Seriously, she got so many clothes it amounted to more than one load of laundry (and I can fit a lot of little people clothes in our washer). Some of the outfits are actually VERY "in" and I'd totally wear them. I may have a harder time dressing her than myself now, there's just so many options.

      This doesn't include the stuff that fell behind the coffee table - WTF?!

    2. Mini-me loves egg salad as much as her mom - the term "mini-me" just keeps becoming more and more true. Poor Mr. B.
    3. I'm abnormally excited about the fact I never need another gift bag for a child's birthday party. EVER.
      Gift bag heaven :)
    4. I've only owned three vehicles (and by 'owned' I mean 'financed') in my life, mini-me already has two! 
    5. There is a VERY good reason Mr. B wants to get rid of the pond in the backyard - primarily, children cannot stay away from the thing! Children being close to water = children falling into water. Not good. Everyone is okay (thank God) aside from a little embarrassment about having to go through the house pant-less. Don't worry, everyone closed their eyes.
    6. Our newer and bigger house does not seem so big with 40+ people inside - I couldn't freaking MOVE! 
    7. Mr. B is my hero *swoon* - okay, time to get cheesy. Mr. B has been working tirelessly to get renos done in our house (we moved in in Jan. and he's been working away as much as he can - and working full-time). He finished the main floor on the weekend (right before the party) and I couldn't be happier with the result!
      Remember the fireplace last week??? Ya, well this is it now! Go Mr. B!
    8. Mini-me is AMAZING! - more cheese! Despite having her own party the night before from 1:30am until 4am, mini-me was happy ALL day! She was smiling, chatting and just being super cute the entire time. She also loved opening presents and smiled at each and every item (even the clothes - bless her heart) and there were A LOT of presents!

    what I wore this (past) week

    Monday, April 14, 2014

    A smattering of outfits from this past week (a few are missing because I forgot to take pics)

    I do know where the majority of the items are from but I'm WAY to lazy to list and link them all. If you're curious, email me or leave me a comment and I'd be happy to direct you. 

    my favs this week (April 12, 2014)

    Saturday, April 12, 2014

    Another week, another list of really random things that I LOVE!

    1. Aveeno Dry Shampoo - I bought this at Walmart for around $5. As far as I'm concerned, anything that hides the fact I didn't have the time (or the energy) to shower is a fav in my book. I've tried a few dry shampoos and what I liked about this one is it didn't give me super white, I look like I"m 100, hair. Score. It does smell a little like an air freshener so be wary.
    2. NutraSea with Vitamin D - I'll be honest here, I don't have a concrete  reason why I love this stuff. It was recommended to me by my naturopath years ago and I feel better when I take it. I took it all through my pregnancy (maybe that's why mini-me is so smart) and continue to take it. If you are interesting in fish oil, this is the one to take. *again, not a doc, so check with whoever you need to before taking.
    3. Print pant (and pixie pants in general) - I am in LOVE with these pants. They fit me well and come in lots of colors/prints. I NEVER would have worn print pants before but my friend Keila (who blogged about it at Mommy in Milwaukee) inspired me by looking so cute in her own print pants! You can always get these on sale at Old Navy. Just buy them, you won't regret it. They're thick enough that they don't show any skin imperfections (read: cellulite), a great length for shorties like me AND super comfy.
      I wore two pairs this week:

    4. Mini-me's birthday sign - so I always think I'm super crafty and then attempt to do something and fail.... miserably. So I attempted to create this sign on my own (because the internet told me that I easily could) and realized quickly that yes, I could do it, but it would involve learning a new program AND designing the thing. Um no. Luckily, my friend at Sweet Cheekers Designs was able to help me out. I LOVE the sign and it looked super cute in mini-me's one year pics today. Thanks Kirsten!
    5. No7 Renew and Protect Moisturizer and Serum - I think they sell this stuff everywhere. I love it. It's not crazy expensive and it makes my skin soooo nice. I've only used them together so I'm not sure which one is doing the magic. Either way, I've traded in my flaky dry skin for this new dewy and fresh stuff. BIG fan!
    6. Avocado holder -  avocado is delish and I could eat a whole one but apparently they're pretty high in fat (good fat) BUT everytime I eat half, the other half turns brown before I can enjoy it. Well, I fooled you ya sneaky little avocados! I found this bad boy and they keep half an avocado good for days with minimal browning. Wooohoo (yes, these are things I'm excited about). 
    7. Statement necklace - thank you Target for this little guy, I'm loving it this week! I bought it as a part of a Spring Style Challenge I'm doing and it's cute and affordable. Can't go wrong really!
      nice boob shot ;) You get the idea, even cute with a plain black T
    8. Red wine - well... I like wine. Of the red variety. If you know me, you're already well aware of this. This has been a fav this week while staying up late painting, cake decorating and otherwise party-prepping or house reno-ing. Yellow tail cab sav is a fav but almost any red will do!

    Tomorrow is the big day, mini-me's birthday party! Stay-tuned for pics AND wish me luck, I'll need it!