New Sunglasses For Spring!

I wear sunglasses every single day. I have sensitive eyes so I wear them to drive and also anytime I'm outdoors (I'm sure many of you who seem to squint at even the tiniest ray of light from the sun can relate).  Protecting your eyes is important for health reasons and sunglasses also happen to be one of my favorite accessories, so it's a bonus that I love them so much.

So I was intrigued when I was contacted by Benji Frank---the eyewear company has a "Try 5 Program" where they send you five pairs of your choosing (for free) to try on in the comfort of your own home. When you've made your selection, you simply send back the package (free of charge) and they send you back the brand new pair you've selected. Pretty convenient, especially if you prefer to shop online but don't want to risk ordering sunglasses (or glasses) that won't suit your face shape.

I picked out the Arthur sunglasses in tortoise. I currently own two pairs of sunglasses (one of those has my prescription) and the Arthur frame was so different from my other two pairs that I was excited to add them to my collection.



I love the way the tortoise pattern is a little different from the other tortoise pairs I've seen.  They also feature polarized lenses which is really great for driving because they reduce glare.


...and here's how they look on! I love them!




What do you think?  Are you planning on getting some new sunglasses for spring/summer?  


FTC disclaimer: I was provided with these sunglasses for review. I am not being compensated to write this post.

26 Weeks!

Last Sunday, I had a sudden burst of energy that had me running around the house like a mad woman cleaning everything in sight.  I don't know what got into me, but I had an unstoppable urge to clean. If it's this intense now, I don't even want to know what "nesting" is going to look like, haha.  

We also finished painting the nursery this weekend (well, H finished painting the nursery, I did some cutting-in and painted around some of the window frames).  He did the first coat Saturday and the second on Sunday during my cleaning frenzy.


The nursery bathroom and closet will probably be painted this upcoming weekend. We also need to add some additional rods and/or shelving in the closet.  I'm still trying to figure out what the most functional solution will be as it's a small space and awkwardly shaped.  


This week I purchased an infant carseat (we went with the Chicco Keyfit 30 in the color graphite after reading great reviews online and in Baby Bargains) and I also got the carseat adapter for our stroller.  
We also ordered a mattress for the crib. We went with the Moonlight Slumber Little Dreamer Dual Firmness All Foam Crib Mattress, again, after great reviews online and IRL as well as it being a top rated choice in Baby Bargains.  Hopefully it will fit snuggly in our crib. If you have this mattress I'd love to hear your feedback---or tell me if there's another one you love and recommend.

Another fun moment this week was attending my friend Nina's son's first birthday party.  Nina blogs over at The HSS feed and she is a fabulous momma to little Jackson who is such an adorable little boy.  The party was a lot of fun and there were lots of kids and babies there so it was exciting to see what we have to look forward to.  The best part, of course, was the cake smash where Jackson played with the icing for awhile before he started to eat the cake---but after the first bite he definitely wanted more!  Happy birthday little Jackson :)

The adorable birthday boy...

...and his lovely momma:
such a cute theme---blue, orange and mustaches! 

How far along? 26 weeks (I do these a week behind as a recap of the previous week, so I'm actually 27 weeks today). 

Total weight gain/loss: I'm not sure, probably well over 10 lbs. now. I will find out at my 28 week appointment next week. 


Maternity clothes? Still wearing maternity pants and regular tops and blouses, though some of those are getting short and/or snug.  I'll have to start breaking out my looser tunics and maternity dresses soon!

Stretch marks? Nope, I'm continuing to use Belli's Elasticity Belly OilMamma Mio Tummy Rub and Mustela double-action stretch mark cream in rotation.

Symptoms: I'm still waking up to pee at night and have some hip/thigh pain from sleeping on my side. Other than that I continue to feel pretty good. I also noticed that I'm starting to feel a little more tired and going to bed earlier. 
My skin really broke out this week too on my chin/jaw area, moreso than any other time I can remember in my pregnancy.  Totally normal, but just something I noticed.

Sleep: I'm sleeping pretty well. Some nights I have a harder time than others, depending on whether or not I'm feeling any discomfort. I would say I sleep pretty well 4-5 nights a week though, which is great.

Best moment this week: Painting the nursery! We also booked a 4D ultrasound which  I'm exited about. A lot of my friends recommended doing this and said they really enjoyed the experience so we are really looking forward to it.


Have you told family and friends: Yes!

Miss Anything? Only sleeping on my stomach


Movement: I still feel her a lot---one thing I noticed Friday was that it felt like she was "balling up" and pressing really hard on the right side of my stomach. When I lifted up my shirt I could see a round bulge right where I felt the pressure. Not sure if it was her head or another body part, but she is all over the place in there and I love it.


Food cravings: Thin Mints, pizza, cereal with milk, peanut butter.


Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.



Have you started to show yet: I sure have!

Baby is a: Girl!

Belly Button in or out? Still in, but definitely shallower and more oddly shaped by the day


Wedding rings on or off? On


Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy!


Looking forward to: Our 4D ultrasound, my next OB appointment, continuing to get everything ready for the baby.

Thank you for reading and for all of my pregnant readers, please feel free to check in below as well and let me know how your pregnancy is going :) I also welcome everyone's advice and comments about pregnancy!

25 weeks!

Week 25 was great because we got a lot accomplished for the nursery. We ordered our crib, bedding and curtains (I had waited until there was another sale at Restoration Hardware Baby & Child before we made additional purchases).  I can't wait to share everything with you all as it all comes in, but I'll save that all for some nursery progress posts.

This weekend we plan to start painting the nursery.  I'm going to do the cutting-in and my husband will paint the walls. We are using no-VOC paint so I can participate (and because I've read you should always use no-VOC paint in children's rooms as it doesn't need to off-gas like regular paint).  We painted most of the rooms in our last home and the nursery isn't huge so we decided to make it a weekend project :)

The room will be a soft light gray with white trim (the trim is already painted so we don't have to re-do it).  I'm going for a look that's really clean and airy but also elegant.  I'm lucky to have a Restoration Hardware Baby & Child showroom in my city and that's the exact "look" I love for nurseries---no themes, no cartoon-ish things---just clean and elegant with some feminine touches.  To give you an idea of some of the looks I'm most drawn to, I'm posting some of my favorite images from the room gallery on the RH B&C website:


To me, these rooms feel really calm, classic and serene, which is exactly the look I hope to achieve. I'm crossing my fingers that it all comes together once everything we ordered comes in.  One of the reasons I wanted to get all of the big pieces ordered now is so that I would have time to return anything that didn't work since it can take weeks to get furniture in.  

My husband also assembled our Uppababy Vista stroller and it's hanging out in our guest room. One of my readers recommend we unbox it and let it air out because the smell can be strong when you first take it out of the box and she was 100% right---so thank you!  Thank you as well for all of the great feedback on the Uppababy Vista from my last post. It was really reassuring to read how many of you mommas love it!


I also had a dental cleaning done this week. My OB told me it's important to have your teeth cleaned during pregnancy because all of the hormones make can make your gums extra-inflammed and sensitive.  I have been keeping up with flossing and finally had a cleaning done at 25 weeks. My dentist said all looked well (though, we didn't do x-rays of course, so after I have the baby I will go back in for that to make sure there aren't any cavities or other concerns).  Something I wanted to share was that my dentist's office (I go to FLOSS dental) does complimentary "mommy cleanings" before your due date. How amazing is that?  Again, because your gums can be more sensitive at this time, they offer a free cleaning before you have the baby to make sure everything looks good. I thought that was really considerate. I love my dentist!

Now, let's get to this week's update:

How far along? 25 weeks (I do these a week behind as a recap of the previous week, so I'm actually 26 weeks today). 

Total weight gain/loss: About 10 lbs and increasing I'm sure. As I've mentioned before, I don't own a scale so I count on my OB appointments for weight updates. I have to be honest and say I'm not really watching what I eat. My goal is to eat healthy during the day and at night if I want ice cream, Thin Mints, chips, whatever, I have them. I was that way before I was pregnant too and it always worked out for me because I never deprived myself.  I've always had a huge sweet tooth and it's certainly just as strong now.  As long as I am eating balanced meals throughout the day, I'm good.


Just to give you a sampling of what I like to eat during the day at work, here are some of my favorite meals and snacks (I still eat every 2-3 hours, just like before I was pregnant).

Breakfast:
  • A bowl of oatmeal with a little bit of brown sugar or cinnamon and strawberries, blueberries and blackberries (I eat this 4-5 times a week at work)
  • Whole grain waffles (Kashi) with strawberry preserves
  • Honey Nut Cheerios with milk (usually on weekends)
Lunch:
  • Big bowl of soup and side salad or fruit
  • Peanut butter sandwich and an apple
  • Chicken salad sandwich with fruit
  • Dinner leftovers
  • Chicken and rice from the cafeteria
  • Flatbread pizza from the cafeteria (usually veggie or margarita with chicken)
Snacks:
  • Cheese cubes and wheat thins (or another cracker)
  • Fruit
  • Nutri Grain bar
  • Veggies with ranch dip
  • Peanut butter with crackers
  • Greek yogurt
  • KIND bar
  • Veggie straws
Maternity clothes? Still wearing maternity pants and regular tops and blouses. I also washed all of the maternity clothes that my co-worker gave to me so I can wear them as I grow. 

Stretch marks? Not yet. I'm continuing to use Belli's Elasticity Belly OilMamma Mio Tummy Rub and Mustela double-action stretch mark cream in rotation.

Symptoms: I am waking up most nights to pee now and I have some occasional very minor pain/discomfort from sleeping on my left side and the pressure it puts on my butt/thigh area on my left side. I feel fortunate to still be feeling really good most days and I definitely thank the Lord in my prayers every night for this.


Sleep: I'm sleeping pretty well, except for on weekends when I have a harder time sleeping in.
Best moment this week: Making progress ordering things for the nursery and getting my teeth cleaned (feels good to be ticking items off of the before-baby-comes to-do list!) My co-worker also visited the office yesterday with her sweet 8-week old baby girl and she absolutely melted my heart. She is so sweet and tiny and holding her felt amazing. I can't wait.

Have you told family and friends: Yes!

Miss Anything? Only sleeping on my stomach


Movement: Still feeling baby girl quite a bit!  I love it every time I feel her move and kick. Sometimes I even feel her kick if I wake up throughout the night and at other random times. It's the best feeling.


Food cravings: Thin Mints, cheese, cereal with milk, cookies n' cream ice cream.


Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.



Have you started to show yet: Oh yes!


Baby is a: Girl!

Belly Button in or out? Still in, but definitely shallower by the day and I suspect it will pop eventually


Wedding rings on or off? On


Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy!


Looking forward to: Seeing my husband become a father, even though it's still a few months away (okay, here I go getting sappy again). My husband had to travel for work last week and while he was gone he was reading "Dad's Pregnant Too," (it was recommended by a friend who just had a baby) and it made me think about all of the amazing moments he will share with our little girl. If you've read my blog for awhile, you'll know that I did not have a good role model in my own father and that has always been really hard for me to accept because I would have loved to have a strong, loving relationship with my father had he not been the way that he is.  It always makes me emotional when I see a beautiful father/daughter relationship because every little girl deserves that. I can't wait to see my husband with our baby...I literally feel overwhelmed at the thought of how incredible it will be. I feel lucky that I married a man who wants to be an amazing father to his child. 

Thank you for reading and for all of my pregnant readers, please feel free to check in below as well and let me know how your pregnancy is going :) I also welcome everyone's advice and comments about pregnancy!

New Haircut & Hair Products I'm Loving

This past weekend, I had my hair cut and I realized that I haven't posted about my favorite hair products in quite some time.

I had more hair cut than usual---I asked my stylist to shorten my layers and overall length because my hair was feeling really dry and heavy.  I am really pleased with the results. My hair holds style better now and overall has a more defined shape.

Here are some snaps:


This was the first day I had it cut---I was playing around with it later in the day parting it in various ways to see how the layers fell.


This is the back of my hair on the first day it was cut-  a lot of my readers request to see the back so you can really see how the layers are cut.


This was my hair on Monday when I washed and styled it myself. I am still using the same blowout/rollers routine that I always use. Refer to this post for details.


This photo was taken this morning when I curled my hair with a curling iron. Refer to this tutorial for how I curl my hair.



Now onto products, here are a few I've been obessessed with lately:

This is my second bottle of this shampoo. The first was actually a full-sized sample I got as a promotion at Sephora. I had to repurchase because it really is that good and is one of my all time favorite shampoos. It leaves hair feeling clean, yet soft and also allows for ample volume in your hair, which I can't say about a lot of other damage-geared formulas which tend to weigh hair down. I also love the smell and love how it lathers. You don't have to use a ton either. It's absolutely amazing.


I have had this product for over a year and when my Crystalliste serum ran out (which I love) I decided to try using this for my blowouts (previously I was using it as an overnight treatment). I use a few pumps of the Elixir Ultime from the nape of my neck down to the ends of my hair prior to blow-drying. It is really smoothing and overall I love how it makes my hair feel.  It also combines well with other products.



This (pricey) mask was sent to me over a year ago but I just started to use it over the last few months. My hair has been really dry lately so I wanted to use something that is made for damaged hair. I apply the mask in the shower after shampooing and then I wash my body and shave to let it sink in before I rinse it.  I really like it and my hair feels good after using it.  As a side note though, I do still love my Macadamia Hair Mask, but will probably wait to repurchase until this runs out as I am working on using up products before I buy new ones so I don't have a ton in my shower and cabinet waiting to be used.



Wishing everyone a great week!

Valentine

Wishing all of my readers a very happy Valentine's Day!  We're keeping it simple and ordering in some pizza.  H got me some lovely tulips and we of course exchanged cards.


As for today's outfit, every time I wear this Forever 21 blouse, I remember how much I love it.  It's a fun pattern and I love the laid-back shape. 

F21 blouse, GAP maternity really skinny pants, F21 basic tank, 
Jessica Simpson Boots, Banana Republic necklace.

Have a great night!

24 weeks!


I know I touched on this last week---but I really love pregnancy. I feel blessed that I've been feeling so good these last couple of months.  I have a feeling I'll have a symptom pile-on in third trimester, but that's okay. I'm just trying to enjoy the experience as much as possible. I even joked with the husband that I'm not sure I can ever sleep without my Snoogle again (though, I do love stomach sleeping so it will be nice to be able to do that again).

Being just 4 months away from my due date is both exciting and kind of surreal. I often see people with their babies and I think to myself, wow, we will have one of those amazing miracles soon. Sometimes, I get a little emotional about it.  


Me as a baby:


How far along? 24 weeks (I do these a week behind as a recap of the previous week, so I'm actually 25 weeks today). 

Total weight gain/loss: I found out that I've gained 10 lbs. so far at my 24-week OB appointment. Must be all those Thin Mints, haha!  I feel good about my body right now and love watching my belly grow. It's hard to predict how you'll feel about your body as it's changing, but I've been really happy and comfortable (and, this is totally cheesy, but I am just so in awe that my body is growing a human life).


Some of you have asked about my workout routine and the truth is, there isn't one.  I had always wanted to maintain a workout routine during pregnancy, but when my OB encouraged me to slow it down in first trimester and I was so sick (and exhausted) every night, the last thing I had the energy for was going to the gym.  I wanted to start working out again in second trimester, but it hasn't happened. Starting a routine now, even a low impact one, just hasn't been on the priority list. I try to walk during the day and on weekends I plan all of my errands to involve lots of walking and I'm still cleaning the house like usual (which counts as a workout to me!) I'm feeling good and that's all that matters. 

Maternity clothes? Still wearing maternity pants and regular tops and blouses. I'm eager for the weather to warm up so I can wear dresses more often.

Stretch marks? Not yet. I'm continuing to use Belli's Elasticity Belly OilMamma Mio Tummy Rub and Mustela double-action stretch mark cream in rotation, at night only.

Symptoms: I am waking up most nights to pee now and I have some occasional very minor pain/discomfort from sleeping on my left side and the pressure it puts on my butt/thigh on my left side.


Sleep: Still using my Snoogle and sleeping well most nights. Just waking up to pee once or twice, but I usually go right back to sleep.

Best moment this week: Making it to 24 weeks and having a good 24 week appointment. It was also awesome to purchase our stroller. 


Have you told family and friends: Yes!

Miss Anything? Not really


Movement: I am feeling baby girl a lot more now. Throughout the day on and off and in the evening and at night/early morning too. Some days she is more 
active than others.

Food cravings: THIN MINTS. God bless the Girl Scouts of America.


Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.



Have you started to show yet: Definitely! The photos in this post are from 23 weeks, but we attended a wedding reception over the weekend and my belly has definitely popped more. 


More recent:

 
Baby is a: Girl!

Belly Button in or out? Still in, but definitely shallower by the day


Wedding rings on or off? On


Happy or Moody most of the time: Happy


Looking forward to: Painting the nursery and just preparing for baby in general.  I'm also excited to take all of the classes we've signed up for, but those aren't until April.

Thank you for reading and for all of my pregnant readers, please feel free to check in below as well and let me know how your pregnancy is going :) I also welcome everyone's advice and comments about pregnancy!

*The photos in this post were taken by Allen Kramer---he is a photographer at my workplace and we took these photos for fun because they got a new studio space and they were testing out all of the lights in the new studio :)

Dress for the Evening

Last night my husband and I attended a wedding reception for his cousin.  She had a beautiful wedding out in San Francisco where she and her husband live so her parents hosted a second reception at Brennan's here in Houston for friends and family who didn't attend.

As I was checking out my closet, deciding what to wear, I came upon a black lace dress from White House, Black Market that I scored at the outlet store over a year ago for less than $30. It has been one of my favorite dresses for a long time, but I hadn't worn it in quite some time.

I slipped it on and thankfully, it fit. It was nice and snug around my bump and I felt great in it!

Dress- WHBM (similar, with sleeves!)
Shoes- Ivanka Trump (similar, under $30!)
Belt- J.Crew (similar)
Bag- Tory Burch Reva Clutch (buy it here)


Today, I ran some errands and ended up going to Target to pick up some random stuff like toothpaste...crackers...milk, etc. I had gotten an email that morning about the launch of the Prabal Gurung collection, but I've been generally pretty disappointed in past collections, even the few I've made purchases from. So I wasn't surprised when I checked out the collection today (there were still a lot of items in my store) and wasn't moved to even try anything on.

I'll admit that this collection looked more exciting (in magazine and web previews) than many of the previous ones, but I just wasn't feeling it once I saw the pieces in person.  It could just be that I haven't been interested in shopping for myself lately.  I even went to GAP's maternity store today to return two long-sleeved basic v-neck shirts that I got gotten on sale at the end of December. I never wore either one and I realized that by the time I would be able to fill them out (probably mid third-trimester), it would be really warm here. I ended up exchanging my tops for this dress for the little one---I had been eyeing it for awhile but wanted to wait until I could get a discount, so I used my 30% off coupon that I mentioned in yesterday's post to purchase it.

Other than that, I just grocery shopped and now I'm doing some laundry and just relaxing for the remainder of the evening.  Hope everyone had a great weekend!
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