Postpartum Leggings and Nursing Tank

Figuring out what to wear after having a baby can be difficult; your body has changed, nothing fits the same, and if you’re nursing, you need to wear easily accessible tops. After having Lively, I wore athletic shorts, big t-shirts, and leggings for the longest time (actually, I still do most days!). But I just discovered the most comfortable and practical postpartum leggings and nursing tank from BLANQI!

I love them because they’re perfect for working out (what better motivation to exercise than new workout clothes?!), but they can also be dressed up! My favorite part about the leggings (aside from how comfy and supportive they are) is that they are opaque, so they’re not sheer/see-through like so many leggings I’ve tried on. They are highwaisted, so they gently hold that postpartum belly in place, making you feel more comfortable and confident.

The pull-down postpartum + nursing support tank top makes breastfeeding so easy and secures this mama’s belly. All mamas and mamas-to-be… you’re going to love BLANQI’s products! They also have maternity leggings and tank tops, so I’m for sure going to get those when I have our next baby someday.

Becoming a mom is the most beautiful thing, and we should be proud of all our bodies are capable of (growing and delivering a baby is a miracle and such a big deal!), regardless of what we’re wearing. But, let me tell you, these comfy leggings and tank top will help you feel your best and be inspired to be the healthiest version of yourself.

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Always and forever,

Alex

 

*BLANQI attire was received in exchange for this review, however all opinions are my own.
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Friday Favorites: A Few of my Favorite Makeup Products

I’ve never been someone who wears drastic makeup (I just feel so not myself with dark/heavy makeup), but I  do enjoy wearing makeup and feeling put together! Plus, let’s be honest… as a mom, the most glamorous part of my day often consists of a trip to Hobby Lobby, a grocery store run, or taking Lively to the park; that being said, my daily makeup routine is simple and typically consists of concealer, loose powder, highlighter, a tiny bit of eyeliner, mascara, and sometimes bronzer. I’m by no means a makeup expert, but I thought I’d compile a list of a few of my go-to makeup products:

  1. L’Oreal True Match Lumi Powder Illuminator (the Rose shade): I use this as a highlighter and feel like it adds a natural glow that isn’t too over-the-top. I’m a newbie to highlighting, but I feel like I’ve been missing out, because I love the extra coloring it adds.lumi2. COVERGIRL Cheekers Bronzer: I don’t use bronzer every day, but I love the “sun-kissed” look and structure this adds. I don’t use too much of it, and this one it subtle enough that when I do use it, it fits into my daily routine well.

bronzer3. COVERGIRL Professional Loose Powder: I use this powder every day and feel like it gives a nice, clean, finished look. It’s lightweight and keeps my face from looking oily. I’ve used it for years and am a big fan!

loose powder4. COVERGIRL Perfect Point Plus Eyeliner: I usually just apply eyeliner on the outside corners of my eyelids, because I don’t like thick eyeliner on myself. Most of the time I either use the color Charcoal or Espresso. This eyeliner goes on super smoothly and is never rough (like some of the pencils I’ve tried).

eyeliner5. Clinique High Impact Mascara: This mascara is kind of expensive, but totally worth it! Mascara is my favorite part of my makeup routine, and I wear it every day. This mascara adds good color, doesn’t clump and adds lots of volume; I would for sure recommend it!

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Like I said, I don’t claim to be a makeup expert, but I wanted to share my daily go-to’s for my simple makeup routine. I’d love to hear some of your favorite makeup products!

 

Head on over to a couple of my friends’ pages to read some of their Friday Favorites: Arin and Stephanie.

 

Always and forever,

Alex

Friday Favorites: Favorite Places to Shop for Baby Clothing

One of the (many) fun things about being a mom is dressing my daughter! I know, I know…. she’ll outgrow letting me pick out her outfits… so for now, I’m just soaking it in and loving dressing up my little baby doll.

While it’s fun picking out baby clothing, it’s super hard to justify spending much money on them, because they outgrow everything so fast! So I’ve compiled a list of my 3 favorite clothing stores to shop for little ones that are both cute and affordable:

  1. Old Navy: This is where most of Lively’s clothes are from. Their clothes are always so adorable and stylish. Their clothes definitely fit Lively the best (the most true-to-size). And the best part about their clothing… there’s always a sale going on. Old Navy is definitely at the top of my list!
  2. Gymboree: This is another one of my go-to stores when looking for clothes for Lively. Their clothes are classic and well-made, and there’s oftentimes good sales, too. Like Old Navy, their clothes seem to be most true-to-size.
  3. TJ Maxx: This one is kind of hit-or-miss, but I’ve found a few really cute things here (i.e. I found Lively’s first pair of hot pink Nike tempos here, some trendy little sweatshirt and legging combos, etc.). They have some of the best prices for name brand clothing. A lot of the brands they carry seem to run a little small, so Lively does tend to outgrow them faster.

One of the biggest ways for me to not overspend on baby clothes has been to buy pieces that are easily mix-and-matched. Dressing little babes is so fun, and by no means has to “break the bank.” What are some of your favorite shops to purchase clothing for your little one?

These are some of my favorite outfits of Lively’s to-date from the stores I mentioned (and just a fun excuse to go down memory lane :))

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(this one is actually from Target, but I love it, too!)

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Take a look at some of my friends’ Friday Favorites this week: Arin, Lauren, Alex, Jenifer, and Jackie!

 

Always and forever,

Alex

 

 

Post-Baby Clothing

Towards the end of my pregnancy it felt like my wardrobe was super limited, as hardly anything fit anymore (maybe a couple of t-shirts and a couple pairs of Nike tempos). It made me excited to have a few more clothing options after Lively was born. I didn’t realize, though, how many things either wouldn’t fit the same for a while or that I wouldn’t be able to wear while breastfeeding.

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It honestly didn’t even cross my mind that I wouldn’t be able to wear hardly any of my dresses out in public as long as I’m still breastfeeding. Thankfully, off-the-shoulder dresses are popular right now, and they make it SO easy to breastfeed! *Side note, as a 90’s baby, I’m so happy seeing tie dye back in style!*

One of my favorite breastfeeding tips I’ve heard is to wear a strapless swimsuit top with strapless, off-the-shoulder, or thin-strapped shirts and dresses.

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If you’re breastfeeding, pregnant, or neither of those, PinkBlush has so many cute and flattering clothing options! They make you feel comfortable and confident in your own skin, no matter where you are in your pregnancy journey.

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On a different note, Lively is obsessed with water… the pool, ocean, bath… any water! So we took her to this creek a couple of days ago, and she had a blast! Ha, she kept trying to sit down in the water and splash around (her clothes were definitely drenched by the end). We love our little water baby!

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Dress: PinkBlush

 

Always and forever,

Alex

Being an Intentional Mom

Becoming a mom is one of the best things that has ever happened to me. Period. It is humbling, unleashes a whole new love you didn’t realize existed, and makes you realize how quickly time goes by.

My mom has always been so good about being intentional with me and with her time in general. She makes me feel like the most important person in the world when I am talking to her. I think technology and social media have value, but one of the things I’ve always appreciated most about my mom (especially looking back) is how she never whips out her phone or makes me feel like second priority; when she is with someone, she is genuinely all there and fully present.

That’s been one of the biggest things for me lately- realizing, even though Lively is only seven months old, she’s going to notice and remember how present or absent I am with her. I don’t want to be the mom who is constantly on my phone, who’s prioritizing social media over the people who are right in front of me… I want Lively to know how valued she is and how she is 100% worth my time. I want to show her the beauty in being present and be that living example for her, because it’s true that actions speak louder than words.

Time is fleeting, but I at least want to be able to look back and say I lived in the moment every step of my life and did everything I could to love my children to the best of my ability (not that perfection is attainable, but that I work towards becoming a better wife, mother, and person every single day). It’s an area I’m trying to work on and have been asking Duncan to keep me accountable in 😉 It’s humbling to realize I’ll never be the perfect mom, but I can keep bettering myself and praying for the areas I’m lacking, knowing God will grow me and fill in the gaps.

With Mother’s Day coming up, I’ve been thinking an extra lot about all things motherhood and about how grateful I am for my own mom. If you’re like me, you probably feel like you can never repay your mom for all she’s done, but if you’re looking for a unique Mother’s Day gift for your amazing mom, Jord Wood Watches has some beautiful  women’s watches (and men’s watches) that you can even get as an engraved gift for your mom (engraving is FREE now through Mother’s Day).

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I have this Zebrawood and Navy Frankie Series watch and love it (featured in these photos). It is such a cool watch and goes with everything!

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Annndddddd one of the most exciting parts of all of this… you can enter to win a GIVEAWAY for a *$100 gift code to use on the Jord site*! All you have to do is go to this link and enter your name and e-mail address (super easy 🙂 ).The contest will close May 21st, with one lucky person winning the $100 gift code, and everyone else who enters receiving a $25 gift code.

*The contest will close on May 21st at 11:59 p.m. and gift codes will expire June 30th, 2017*

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Make sure to make your moms feel extra loved and appreciated this Mother’s Day. And Happy Mother’s Day to all you new mommies out there!

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Always and forever,

Alex

 

 

Calling all Leggings Lovers

Leggings are most definitely one of my favorite parts of fall and winter; they’re comfy, warm, and can be worn when working out, or dressed up for a more casual/cute look! On a crisp fall morning, I’d much rather put on some comfortable leggings than a pair of jeans (not saying I don’t love a nice pair of jeans :)). I’d heard of LuLaRoe before and people raving about their “butter” leggings, so, naturally, I was ecstatic when I recently received a pair of my own!

The leggings come in numerous fun patterns, as well as classic solids, making them ideal for mixing and matching! I absolutely love the flower pattern I have. They also have some perfect-length tops to go with their leggings, so they are modest and wearable in a variety of settings (the top I’m wearing is LuLaRoe, as well).

I can’t wait to add more of these leggings to my wardrobe. Nothing motivates this new mommy to get back in shape like some new workout gear! I’m especially looking forward to continuing to wear them on my regular walks at the park.

If you’re interested in purchasing a pair of these leggings or any of the other clothing items LuLaRoe sells (they have a variety of dresses, shirts, skirts, etc.), find LuLaRoeHopeCureton on Facebook!

These are a few pictures from one of our walks at our local park, which is one of our favorite parts about our new city!

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Always and forever,

Alex

Cute & Comfy Maternity Robe

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Well, I’ve officially made it to 37 and a half weeks! I really cannot believe Lively could arrive at any time. This week I packed her diaper/hospital bag and made a list of what I will need for my hospital bag (I’m sure I’m overpacking… both because that’s how I am, and since this is my first baby, I’d rather bring too much than not have something I want/need). Duncan and I also installed Lively’s carseat base in the car; it’s so weird seeing it in there every time I go to run an errand, but I love it! 🙂

Another highlight of the week was receiving this adorable delivery/nursing maternity robe! I knew I wanted a comfy robe for in the hospital and afterwards, and this one is exactly what I was looking for. I’ve gotten quite a bit of other cute maternity clothes from Pink Blush, and this robe is definitely one of my favorites! None of their clothing has disappointed; if you are looking for maternity clothes, they are a great resource.

Thankfully, my robe came in just in time, as I’m starting to pack my own hospital bag! I love how it is made of lightweight material, is super soft, and the feminine, yet simple, added touch of the lace trim.

Duncan finishes his first big week of medical school tests on Friday, so any time after that would be perfect for little miss Lively Mae’s arrival! 😉 I’m excited to see Duncan become a dad and already know he will be the most unbelievable and intentional dad in the world, because of the way he loves me so well. Lively is a lucky girl, and I know his love will give her a glimpse of her Heavenly Father’s unfathomable love for her.

Thank you for all of your support and prayers! We’ll keep you updated!

 

Always and forever,

Alex

 

What to Wear for a Hot Summer Pregnancy

My second trimester and half of my third trimester have taken place during the heat of the summer. It’s been one of the hottest, most humid summers I can remember… but I suppose that could partially be due to my little bun in the oven! One of the best parts about being pregnant this summer was working at our shaved ice trailer, Yeti’s Shaved Ice! Although there wasn’t air conditioning in the trailer, it always helped having a shaved ice at the end of the day to look forward to (especially since I’ve been craving shaved ice throughout my entire pregnancy) :). Since the majority of my summer was spent in the shaved ice trailer, I typically wore my Yeti’s Shaved Ice tank top with athletic shorts. This was super nice, because all of my athletic shorts still fit and the tank tops were a nice way to stay cool!

When not at work, it was a little harder to know what to wear. I didn’t want to spend all of my money on a new maternity wardrobe, but I did want to invest in some key pieces of clothing, since we want to have more children in the future. Over the past few months, I’ve invested in a few flowy shirts (I love these, because they can be worn during pregnancy, as well as after!), a couple of flowy dresses (also great for pregnancy and afterwards), a pair of maternity jeans (that can be rolled into capris), a white pair of maternity jeans, and one “fitted” maternity shirt. I didn’t buy many fitted maternity shirts, just because I wanted to be able to wear what I bought both pre- and post-baby, in order to save money. Most of the clothing I’ve bought during my pregnancy I’ve ordered from Pink Blush, an online maternity store. I love the way their clothing fits and have been happy with everything I’ve gotten from them! Just make sure to check the sizing chart on their website before placing an order, as most of their clothing runs a little big.

Since I carry our daughter pretty high, I’ve thankfully been able to wear all of the shorts I had pre-pregnancy. Many of the dresses, shirts, and tank tops I had before still fit, which has been really helpful, as well! The majority of the time, thanks to all the heat and humidity, I wear shorts and a tank top or a flowy dress. We’ve gone out on the lake and to the pool a couple of times, which is the perfect time to get some sun on the bump! 🙂 I definitely prefer a two-piece when pregnant, because it is not fun having tight clothing on your pregnant belly; a two-piece is much more comfortable!

Below are some of the outfits I’ve worn this summer (during the later half of my second trimester and first half of my third):

These photos were taken when I was 19 weeks pregnant. I didn’t have much of a bump, so I went with a more flowy top for our graduation party and this flowy maroon dress for graduation!

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This was at my brother and sister-in-law’s wedding. I was almost 21 weeks pregnant and still didn’t really have a baby bump I wanted to “show off,” so I wore this maxi dress!

IMG_9859This photo was taken on Father’s Day, which was still during my second trimester. I chose to wear another maxi dress, rather than trying to accentuate my mini baby bump.

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I constantly craved being in the water this summer, so we tried to go swimming any free chance we got. This was taken at White Water towards the end of my second trimester, and I loved getting some sun on my baby bump!

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I had this dress pre-pregnancy, and it’s one that’s been perfect to wear this summer, even with my growing bump!

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Duncan and I took a day trip to Memphis a couple of weekends ago, and it was extremely hot! These white shorts have been a go-to during my pregnancy, and this tank top I had prior to pregnancy is perfect whether pregnant or not.

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This floral dress is one I bought from Pink Blush! I love that the sleeves and length of the dress are a little longer. It is super comfy, and it’s definitely not just a maternity dress.

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This was the dress I wore for Duncan’s White Coat Ceremony last weekend (32 weeks pregnant). It’s not a maternity dress, but the flowy design of it and the length fit well with my belly that is growing more each day!

As far as shoes, I tried to wear shoes that had good support! I basically lived in my Birkenstocks all summer, because they’re my favorite & most comfortable shoes. When I worked, I tried to wear tennis shoes or Chacos for the support. For formal occasions, like graduation and Duncan’s White Coat Ceremony, I wore heels, but made sure to bring a change of shoes!

I’m no fashion expert (or an expert at being pregnant), but these are some of the ways I made it through a hot & humid summer pregnancy! You don’t have to spend a ridiculous amount of money on a new maternity wardrobe, but it’s fun to splurge on a few items; after all, growing a baby is something worth celebrating! 🙂

 

Always & forever,

Alex

 

Fall/Winter Wardrobe Must-Have!

This past week Duncan and I spent a couple of nights at Big Cedar in a cozy little cabin in the woods (courtesy of our parents’ amazingly thoughtful Christmas gift)!  It was so nice and relaxing, especially since it was during the only “snow” we’ve gotten here in the Ozarks all winter… technically it wouldn’t be considered snow, it was more of a light frost/ice that was almost instantly gone.  It was fun just being together, going to a cute little coffee shop for breakfast, watching movies, and snuggling up beside the wood-burning fireplace!

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This olive button thermal top was absolutely perfect for our little mid-week getaway!  It is comfortable and warm, so whether we were relaxing in our cabin or out braving the cold, it was perfect for all occasions.  I found the top at PinkBlush, a women’s online boutique which has lots of cute tops and dresses for women!  This top from PinkBlush Boutique goes well with so many different looks (jeans and boots, leggings and flats, etc.) and can easily be dressed up.

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ShopPinkBlush for this top (also comes in mauve and blue) and a variety of other wardrobe must-haves!  This trendy boutique online is definitely worth checking out!

Here are a few more pictures from our mini trip at the beautiful Big Cedar!

*Special thanks to my husband for being the best photographer*

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Happy Sunday!

Always and forever,

Alex