Monday, November 30, 2015

My Black Friday Buys!

This year, Black Friday was a huge success! At least I think it was, I did the majority of my shopping online so I’ll be waiting to see how it goes once my items are delivered. I’m most proud of the fact that in all my Black Friday hustling years, this is the year I've shopped the least for myself. Now I definitely got myself some nice goodies, but I’m going to wait on some of what I snagged for myself and have Matt wrap it for Christmas. Most of my buys were clothing for the family, everyone really needed some cold weather items for the season. We did buy a few things for the house and a couple of gifts for the little ones in the family too. I’ve linked everything below- including a few items I picked up earlier in the week and items that were not included in the sales.

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For myself:

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For Matthew:

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The Little Ladies:

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For the House:

Phew! Such great stuff, I really hope everything is just as awesome in person as it was online! I did end up going out around 9pm on Thursday night to get the few things that weren't available to buy online or were sold out. The shops were nearly dead!! I didn't wait in line to check out at Target or Toys R Us and it was so weird. I really love to shop Black Friday, but part of the joy for me is waking up in the middle of the night and being a zombie with my family and girlfriends. I'm really glad that this year so many places had deals that went all week- it was nice to shop without any crowds.

Did you do some shopping? What did you get?

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Recent OOTDs

Over here in CA, our weather is all over the place. Today and tomorrow are supposed to get pretty cold, but the rest of the days are freezing in the morning and mid 80s by the afternoon. I have a few sweaters and scarves I've been wanting to wear, but it's just too dang hot! I've been wearing a lot of the same items repeatedly lately. We're also going through some dress code changes at work so I've been dressing pretty boring to stay within the guidelines (no bright colors, long slacks, nylons, it's pretty dated). Hopefully, I'll be able to get some more outfits posted soon, especially some more work ones- I always like to see what people wear to work and get inspiration for the ho hum of the work week.

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I haven’t actually worn this top yet, but I bought it and tried it on at home. I plan on wearing it to Thanksgiving with these jeans and some booties. I spotted it at Target and immediately tossed it in my cart. The jacquard detailing is really pretty and is such a pretty cream color, the sleeves have a darker underside which looks great when you roll them for a more casual look. Target has been killing it in sweaters this season, I saw a ton of really cute ones when I got this one.

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I’m so glad I snagged this top a few weeks ago, it’s so easy to wear and washes well. It’s cute for both work and personal life and is great to layer with cardigans and sweaters. When I was pregnant, I had these pants in the maternity version and I bought two more non-maternity pairs for work. I really like them and think they fit true to size, I want to get the navy color as well. I love the ankle length, but we are no longer allowed to wear ankle length pants at work and I’m pretty bummed about it.

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This cardigan is so soft and it's the one from my Closet Clean Out post that I was on the fence about. It's definitely too casual for work, but I'm glad I kept it. These skinnies are super comfortable and soft too, I've thought about distressing them and making some holes, but I'm too scared to do it and ruin them.

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I’m so completely obsessed with this sweater! I’ve been wearing it nearly non-stop, it’s just so comfortable. I wish I had bought it in more colors and I went back to the store and they didn’t have my size left (crying face emoji), so I’m going to order the fig online. If you’re looking for a great pair of leggings, I’d definitely check out White Plum’s, theirs are so soft and comfortable, they are honestly my favorite leggings to date.

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Another repeat, this tulip sleeved top is one of my favorites. Most of the time I’ll tuck it in for work and leave it untucked if I pair it with jeans on the weekend. It’s lovely with a skirt too. I have the top in lime as well and want to get it in black. The tulip sleeves are just so soft and pretty, I love feminine details like that.

Happy Thanksgiving eve! I hope you all have a wonderful holiday!!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Weekend Recap

Like most weekends, this one went way too fast. It seems like we're always on the go, go, go. Since we had the time, we put up our tree Saturday morning. I am not ready to fully decorate our house, but I love the glow of a tree. Ellie was also dying to put it up and decorate it, she was so excited!

I decorate the top with all of our ornaments, but I've bought soft ornaments for the bottom two feet for the girls. I didn't want to have a tree that they couldn't touch or leave the bottom half bare. It's been really nice because since it's never been a big deal about those ornaments, Ellie rarely plays with them and if she does it's no big deal. Ellie made sure Emma got in on the action too.

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After our morning got started, we headed out to celebrate my cousin's birthday. I love being so close to my cousins, we've had so much fun growing up together and it's nice to have a large family at gatherings.

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We went to Lucille's and it's been way too long since we last ate there! I had their pork sliders and peach lemonade and it was delicious! I told Matt we have to go back again soon. I'm also obsessed with their apple cinnamon butter and want to find a copy cat recipe asap for it.

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Saturday night I had a craft night with some girlfriends where we all painted Hello Happy House wreaths and it was so nice to get out of the house and relax. We had so much fun, but my painting skills are seriously lacking!

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It was a great weekend and I'm so sad to return back to work tomorrow. I wish I had this week off for vacation and could snuggle my littles all day. Hope you're having a great start to a short week!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Recent Purchases for my Matching Girls

Growing up as a sister duo, I was forced to wear a ton of matching outfits with my cool little sister. Sometimes it was awesome and other times we both kicked and screamed the entire time and hated that we matched. I'll let you take a guess which happened more often. I think it's a rite of passage to be able to match your children for as long as they will allow you to. I fully plan on letting this vicious cycle continue onto my own munchkins and I can't wait to see them in matching get ups.

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Ellie is obsessed with the "puppy" movie, aka 101 Dalmations, so when I saw these outfits I had to snag them. The black leggings are sparkly and I thought they were just the cutest! How adorable will these look with boots or Mary Janes?

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Again, Ellie is obsessed with dogs right now so I thought this was only fitting. I like that the top is a little heavier and these leggings are also sparkly.

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The Christmas holiday is all about matching pajamas and we are all set! It was the only set I could find that had sizes for both girls in the same fabric. I want to get a few more sets, but I love that these have all the holiday feeling while not being outright just for Christmas.

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Another holiday top that's not outright just for Christmas and would look adorbs with the sparkly leggings from the above sets.

The girls also needed some every day clothes for play and day care that I thought I'd include in this post, even though they didn't get matching sets of them.

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How sweet is this floral print? Carters have several different pieces that are too, too cute with this print (I especially love this set), but Emma really needed some classic long sleeves for the season so I went with this three pack set.

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These jeans are the cutest thing in the entire world on Eleanor. When I brought them home and tried them on her, Matt said she's too young to have real jeans and I needed to return them immediately. I totally agreed, but we kept them anyways and I just love how cute and old she looks in them.

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Top (on clearance, similar here) // Leggings // Dress

On a mommy trip to the mall one night, I couldn't help but immediately "add to cart" when I saw these plaid looks at Old Navy. I thought they would be perfection at Christmas and a way for the girls to match, without being identical (which I actually prefer to dress them). I may have also bought myself a matching top, I'm totally that mom! I like this dress version of it, but it just didn't work for my body type and would be pretty tough to nurse in.

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Here are some more picks from Carter's that I love! The cable knit is gorgeous in person, but it just doesn't get cool enough here for the girls to wear it. Especially Emma since she's always being held, I thought she'd get too hot in it. I love all the red they have this season, I think it's perfect for the holidays (obviously) and will pair so cute with fun printed tights/leggings, and sparkly shoes and hair accessories. 

What have you been buying your littles? Do you match your kids? Did you grow up matching your siblings? 

Monday, November 16, 2015

5 Things that Didn't Get Easier with a Second Child

Even though Emma is just over three months, motherhood has been so much easier this second time around and I feel like I've been rocking it. Having more knowledge, experience, and an easier baby have made it a whole new world (did you sing that to the Aladdin tune? I typed it to the tune and we've been watching it a ton in our house). So many fears have been quieted, I know what skills to put to use with each cry, and nursing has been awesome. I'm still going with no tears shed! That alone is an accomplishment in and of itself. However, there are a few things that haven't changed and I thought I'd share them with anyone who is expecting or thinking of adding to their brood.

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1. The fear of SIDS
With Ellie, I checked constantly for fear of SIDS. She wasn't a sleeper so anytime she slept more than 20 minutes I checked repeatedly that she was breathing. Emma is a sleeper so it totally freaked me out at first, now I may only check a few times a week, but the fear is still there. Sometimes you do everything right, you read all the books, you take the precautions and terrible things still happen. I hope and pray that this never happens and if she hasn't moved or made a peep I may go into her room for a closer look, a finger under her nose to feel for warm breath, and I may or may not have poked her a time or two.

2. Red lights
Emma loves car rides, but if you stay stopped for too long she gets upset. It's inconvenient and you have to tap the brakes and creep to every red light to try and keep the car moving for as long as possible before coming to a complete stop. On a terrible day, you even think about the risk if you just ran that stop sign, just once to make it home with a content infant. I totally forgot about this, until Emma was here and my girlfriends and I all laughed about it.

3. Late night diaper changes
You're tired, your eyes are half open, your contacts are dry as a desert, and you contemplate the 12 hours leak free design your diapers brand promises. It sucks and they are no fun and did not get better the second time around. Included in this as a part b if you will, is blow outs. They also suck.

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4. Pumping is the pits
When it comes to feeding your child, I pass no judgment. Nurse, pump, bottle feed, formula, you choose what's best and works for your family. With both of my girls, I've been able to breastfeed them and although it's going so much better this second time around (due to an increase in my supply), pumping still sucks. I hate it. I haven't been as diligent or strict about it this time because I just loathe doing it. I've even woken Emma up to nurse just long enough to keep me comfortable and save me from pumping and I am a strong believer in never waking a baby. Having to tote your pump with you when you're away, storing milk, washing all of the parts, and having to make sure everything you wear is pump friendly is just the pits. I'm thankful we have breast pumps in this day and age and I'm glad I don't have to hand express, but I still find it all terribly inconvenient and hate doing the task every day.

5. The speed of time
It still goes by lightning fast. Knowing how quickly it went by with Eleanor, I tried extra hard to relish in the moments, but they still slipped right through my fingers just as fast, if not faster. This is one of the saddest parts of parenting, it just goes by so quickly. Ellie is getting so big and I know that the time when she'll no longer fit on my lap or be too big to pick up is just around the corner. It breaks my heart to know that she's not always going to be small enough for me to carry her. It's no different the second time, every day Emma gets bigger and new milestones are achieved. Both my girls will be off to college in what I'm sure will feel like a blink of an eye.

These are my top things that didn't get better or easier with experience. Being a parent is so fulfilling, but there's things that just don't change no matter how many times you've done it. I wish I could wave a magical wand and and make the tough times easier, the inconvenient things convenient, and time last longer. What are some things you thought would be different with a second child?

Thursday, November 5, 2015

A Week of OOTDs

I've been trying really hard to take pics of what I'm wearing lately, not that it's amazing, but I love seeing what other women wear and how they style and restyle their wardrobes and pieces. I'm going back to work this week and will be posting more office outfits (lighting/timing permitting in the mornings). I'm absolutely dreading going back to work and leaving my babies. I'm also terrified about getting ready and out the door on time. It can be so hard getting ready and out of the house in a decent amount of time. Mostly because I'm usually getting ready while they're awake and between bouncing Emma and keeping Ellie's hands off my mascara can be quite the time suck. I'm just going to wake up at the crack of dawn and wish for the best.

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Top (Old Navy, old) // Skirt (Target, old, similar here and here)

Another Sunday we made it to church! I've been dying to wear this combo together, but the top is maternity and the skirt is not so I had to wait my whole pregnancy to pair them together. I initially had bought the non-maternity version of this shirt, but I was recently pregnant when I bought it, and I liked the longer hem better on the maternity version. I'll definitely be wearing this all the time.

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This last weekend we went out to a family party and it was the perfect event for this outfit. I had this outfit planned out in my head for a few weeks, but it's been too hot here in CA to wear pants. It's finally started to cool down at nights and I wore this outfit first thing!

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Tunic // Jeans // Ring // Necklace (with this charm and this charm added on)

This tunic is so easy to wear!! I've worn it twice so far and I love just putting it on and heading out the door. The fabric is pretty thick and will be great with leggings and boots when the temps drop.

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Top // Leggings (Target) // Necklace (HM, old, similar here)

On a shopping trip with my girlfriend last week, I picked up this top at Old Navy for $8! It's crazy soft and super comfortable and warm. I wore this outfit for trick or treating, it has a hi low hem and completely covers the bum in the back. I was really surprised with how warm it was, I didn't expect it to be since the fabric is thin. It's perfect for layering and I look forward to wearing it again!

Happy Tuesday everyone! Have a great week!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Fall Beauty Faves and Purchases

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I've found some new beauty products and rediscovered some older ones and wanted to share what I've been using and loving lately. I have something for nearly every part of the face- eyes, lips, nails, face, I have it all covered!

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NYX is quickly becoming one of my favorite beauty brands, they have a ton of products, they're a great price, and they have a ton of dupes for higher end brands. I picked up their Matte Lip Cream in Stockholm and I'm loving it for fall. It's a great shade, really neutral, and super easy to wear. I liked it so much, I went back and bought Istanbul too, although I don't think this shade looks as great on it's own, I think it needs a gloss or some balm over it. It's definitely harder to pull off matte lip color with lighter shades (at least in my humble opinion and experience).  I also scooped up their lip liner in Peekaboo Neutral which according to this and this pin is a dupe for MAC's Boldly Bare. I'm absolutely liking this shade, it's so blendable and works great with a number of lipsticks and glosses I have.

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Lorac Skinny Palette from Nordstrom Sale, similar here

This palette is amazing! I've been using it a ton the last 2-3 weeks, nearly everyday and it pairs perfectly with my favorite MAC shadows (All That Glitters, Naked Lunch, and Satin Taupe). I really like that this palette is small enough to carry in my makeup bag and has such versatile shades. I mostly use the far left ones, and only the second one over has shimmer in so I love to use one of my MAC shades in the crease or the middle of my lid. These shadows last all day, have amazing pigment, and I totally have my eye on their Pro Palette next! 

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This concealer has been sitting in my makeup drawer unused for months, months!! I'm not sure why I brought it out because I initially wasn't that impressed with it, but I'm so glad I did. It really helps to cover up and brighten my under eye area a ton. My biggest complaint is that you don't get a whole lot of product like you do with my HG Maybelline Age Rewind, but I think this definitely brightens up the area more. I'm going to do some more comparisons, but I'm happy enough with this concealer to buy it again, but this time I bought a shade lighter (Ivory) since we're heading into the cooler months.

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It may be November, but until this week, we've had blazing heat and I have to keep my makeup from melting off and disappearing. On days where I need my makeup to last all day and into the night, I've been using the primer spray first, then the pore eraser on top and my makeup has lasted like whoa. WHOA! My sister got married at the end of September and it was ridiculously hot and crazy humid and this combo really helped my makeup to stay spackled onto my face.

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Looking for the perfect red polish? Run over and pick up Essie's Shall We Chalet?, it's great for all the upcoming holidays. Red can be such a hard shade to find that works for you (especially lipstick!) and this one is a bright true red without any hint of pink. This is such a fun color and I only had to use one coat (with their gel topper).

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On my first night out without the babies, my girlfriend and I headed to the mall and stopped in at the MAC counter to pick up some lipstick. I really had to hold myself back from buying several, and even took pics of my lipstick stash at home before heading out to remind myself to not go crazy. I'm using "crazy" as a very loose term, I totally bought the girls some Christmas outfits while we were shopping. Anyways, I tested so many lipsticks and kept picking up shades I already freaking owned (which I promptly dug out of my lipstick drawer and put them into my overflowing makeup bag) and then was torn between Syrup and Brave, which I mulled over for way too long. I ended up getting Brave and I'm super happy with it. It's pretty similar to Stockholm above in being a deeper neutral shade that pretty much goes with everything. Brave also goes great with the Peekaboo Neutral liner too!

So that's my recent beauty purchases and favorites lately. I have a few things on my wishlist that I'm going to wait on for Black Friday shopping and Christmas. What are you ladies loving lately? Have you added anything new to your makeup bags that you're loving? Rediscovered a long lost product?

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Best Treatment for Diaper Rash

They tell you that each baby is different and it's so true! Emma is calm, loves being passed around from one family member to the next at parties, sleeps a ton, and is really relaxed. A totally different experience from our first baby! Another difference between our girls is Emma's sensitive skin. From the very beginning, she had really sensitive skin and I swear her little perfect cheeks were constantly changing between pink and red. It kind of threw me for a loop because my experience with diaper rash was never a big concern- it always cleared up rather quickly. I've had to learn some new tips and tricks with this little one and I wanted to share my experience like a good mommy blogger!

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1. Change diapers often!
This is kind of a no brainer, but sometimes I would wait until the diaper was full or until she pooped to change her. I think everyone does this, but I'm still kind of embarrassed to put it out here. With Emma, probably for about the first month, we would have to change her diaper really often to keep her rash away. As soon as it started to disappear and we slacked, it would come immediately right back. Since rashes can happen at any diaper wearing age, I would suggest changing diapers anywhere between 2-3 hours, or less if you have an infant. This has been the biggest tip to keeping rashes at bay.

2. Change types or skip the wipes
Sometimes, changing brands or types of wipes can be an easy choice to keep away rashes. During Emma's first few weeks we had to switch ours to ones for sensitive skin. When she had a really bad rash that wouldn't go away, we skipped wipes altogether for a soft towel and water.

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3. Let them go free
When in doubt, air it out! We haven't had to do this with Emma, but one time with Ellie we just let her be naked for a a while on a towel. It was all we could do to get that little sucker of a rash away! It helps to keep their skin from being rubbed or irritated from the diaper and gives them time to air out.

4. Lay it on thick
Another trick I learned is to slather the rash cream on THICK and often. A lot of it gets absorbed or rubbed into the diaper, so you need to really get a nice layer of cream on their sweet little tushie.The cream that's worked best for Emma is Desitin, it goes on really nice and clears up any signs of rash within a few hours or a day or two (depending on the severity). We use their maximum strength version, since it offers the maximum amount of zinc oxide, go big or go home is our motto. When she has a rash, or even the sign of one coming on, we wipe some cream on her at every diaper change.

If you're in need of some Desitin, or want to try it out for your little one, Target Cartwheel coupon is offering 25% off from 10/25-11/21! It's the perfect time to stock up!

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What are some of your best rash tips that helped your babies? What worked the best for you?

Today's post is sponsored by DESITIN® cream, but all experiences and opinions are my own!