Thursday, May 25, 2017

5 Things To Do Before Baby Arrives

Thank you Dreft purtouch for sponsoring this post, all opinions are of my own and based on my experience.

I’m well over halfway now with my last pregnancy! How did it go by so quickly? My mind is blown with everything I want to get done before our little guy joins the team. I’ve been making to-do lists, crossing my Ts and dotting my Is, and thankfully I think I have everything set in place. Of course, I still have some time before his arrival, but I prefer to be prepared. I’m a planner and it works best for me and my stress level if I can plan and prepare a few steps ahead! Welcoming a new baby into the family can be a huge change for everyone and I have a few tips I want to share that can make that change easier.

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1. Plan for child care (Daycare and Delivery!)
If this is your first child, and you will be going to work, it helps to check out some daycare options beforehand. I found that it was easier for me to go while pregnant and without my baby to places, then come back later with my baby to my top choices and see how everyone meshed together. It worked for me doing it this way so I could go into a place with certain expectations and needs and after becoming a mom and getting to know my baby (and the reality check of my expectations!) to find the right daycare for our family.

If this is your second + child, you’ll need to secure someone to watch them while you’re giving birth. My situation is a little easier since I have scheduled C-sections- I can notify my work, family, sitters, etc. to the exact date and time. If you’re baby is coming the “old fashioned way”, you’ll need to set up the same thing, but on a loose, flexible timeframe. Be sure that whoever will be watching your kid(s) is aware of the days/time and what they’ll need (sports activities, school, etc). Having as much planned out ahead of time as possible is so much easier.

2. Clean the house
Before having each of my babies, I went crazy cleaning and doing as much as I could the week before our little one’s arrival. It’s so nice to come home to a clean home, especially when you’re recovering for birth and taking care of your little one(s). If you have the disposable income, use it to hire someon, it’s worth every penny! Bending, scrubbing, etc. is hard work when you’re at the end of your pregnancy. Anytime I’m away from home for any reason, it’s the best feeling to come home to clean bathrooms, mopped floors, and freshly washed sheets!

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3. Quality Time
Before each baby, I’ve always had a list of things I wanted to do with my husband and our family to spend some time together before our lives are turned upside down. Restaurants, movies, activities, things that are fun for everyone. When we had Ellie, we took a “babymoon”, with Emma we took Ellie to see her first theater movie, and now with our baby boy we’ll probably go bowling, to a pizza place with games, and maybe Emma’s first theater movie! I always want to remember each stage of our family and the time before our family is growing seems to be extra special.

4. Pamper Yourself
The week before I’m due, I like to get my hair done and treat myself to a mani/pedi. The last month of pregnancy is the hardest for me; my body aches, it’s hard to sleep, nothing fits and I’m sick of wearing the same 4 items that still do. I love pampering myself when I may not be feeling my best, it gives me a boost and I’m ready to meet my newest little looking my best. LOL! I like to get my hair done before for pictures during/after the delivery and in preparation for our newborn photos. Having my hands and toes done are just the icing on the cake.

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5. Do the Laundry
Matt and I can have sensitive skin so I assumed with each of our children, having that newborn perfect skin, they would have sensitive skin as well. Ellie wasn’t too bad, but Emma still has pretty sensitive skin. She’ll use a blanket somewhere else (like at daycare/someone’s home) and break out in a huge rash. New babies can go through so many outfit changes a day, I like having all of their clothes washed and ready to go. That’s why this time, I’m using Dreft purtouch, a hypoallergenic baby detergent to prewash all of our clothes. For our family, we need gentle detergent that’s safe and irritant free for our skin, but is effective in cleaning and getting out stains. Dreft purtouch has a 65% plant-based formula- free of dyes, chlorine, phosphates, ethanolamine and optical brighteners - specially formulated to help make the world gentle for baby. One thing I've always made sure to do with each baby is pre-wash their clothes (here's a great video that highlights the importance of doing so), 90% of dermatologists recommend pre-washing to get rid of excess dyes and processing chemicals that can linger on baby clothes.

Each week seems to be going faster and faster! There's so much I want to do before our little guy arrives! I finally decided on a nursery theme and it's almost time to get to work on it! These five things I feel is the most important to get prepared and will be my main focus this second half of my pregnancy.

What are some of your to-dos before baby arrives? Any tips on the transition from two to three?

Friday, May 12, 2017

OOTD: Seeing Stripes

One of my favorite dresses this pregnancy has been this striped dress from Pink Blush! It is so comfortable and I've worn it several times- running errands, out to lunch with my BFF, family BBQ, etc. The fabric is so soft and it's so easy to wear!

I'm so happy to have found Pink Blush with my last pregnancy, they have the cutest pieces- both maternity and non-maternity. Whenever I need something for everyday or a special occasion, I know I can find what I need on their site. Nearly everything I own from them is perfect for each stage of my pregnancy and postpartum. I love finding quality items that I can wear for years!

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Dress: Pink Blush c/o // Sunnies // Sandals

Thanks for stopping by and for all of your sweet, sweet words and advice from Tuesday's post! I appreciate all of your support SO MUCH! It really means a lot to me and I appreciate all of your friendships.

Have you entered my $75 Pink Blush Giveaway yet? Today's the last day to enter, don't miss out!!

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

20 Weeks Update + Pink Blush Giveaway!

Morning everyone! Sorry there's been so much radio silence on the blog and Instagram lately. This pregnancy has gotten the best of me! I don't know how mamas with lots of kids do it! There's a few women at my church who are expecting as well and some have 3+ kids already and I just look at them in awe. Sometimes, I want to just pick their brain about how they get it all done. Women are such rockstars!!

This last week I hit 20 weeks and I can't believe I'm already halfway through my last pregnancy! It's crazy how quickly each pregnancy goes by. We've been pretty busy and I have another announcement to make in a future post (which isn't really that big of a secret if we're friends on Facebook) that I look forward to sharing with you guys. Here's some pregnancy and life updates about what's been going on.

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Top: Pink Blush c/o 
I love how this top hangs, it's so soft and comfortable. I wore this for a date night with the hubs for our 6th wedding anniversary!
Jeans: Pink Blush c/o
These maternity jeans have a full panel and are also really comfy. They run TTS.

To better accommodate my schedule and doctor appointments, I've transferred to a new location with a larger staff for work. I absolutely love my new location, my co-workers are amazing and are such a great team to work with. The location is further away from my home, so my drive is a bit longer, mostly due to traffic. I've been there for just over a month now and really enjoy being there. I'm doing the same position that I've had since coming back to work after having Emma. I don't really talk much about my 9-5 here, but wanted to share since I'm waking up a bit earlier and coming home just a bit later. It's been cutting into some of my "free" time that I would usually set aside for blogging and posting.

Another big hit to my routine? Exhaustion! Man, am I tired! I haven't had any of my energy return at all in the magical second trimester. On my birthday last week, I went to bed at 830! Between work, taking care of the girls, house work, and being pregnant, I feel tired all the time. My under eye concealer has been my best friend these past few months.

I think this pregnancy, I'm going to get huge. I've heard that you gain more with boys than with girls, but I've gained over 5lbs more at this stage than with either of the girls! To be honest, I don't really care about my weight while I'm pregnant, I don't count calories or watch what I eat, I just want to be healthy and enjoy as much as I can. I was looking back at my pregnancies and sidewise, I'm about the same although I feel much larger than before.

This pregnancy is also a lot harder on my body than my previous ones. My sciatic nerve is driving me nuts and I have constant back pain from when I wake up till I go to bed. It's awful! I'm drinking more water, taking Tylenol when I really need to, stretching, but nothing seems to be helping. I've also been getting headaches often and haven't been sleeping well between my back and head aches. It's been pretty tough.

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Now that the negative nellies are out of the way, I want to share some great news! I had my second trimester anatomy scan and all is well with baby boy! The nurse and my doctor both think he'll be long/tall (the girls are both 98% in height). During the scan, he kept licking his fingers and playing with his lips. I think he'll have mine and Ellie's lips- you can totally see them in the ultrasounds!

I've felt small movements here and there starting a few weeks ago, but this past week I've been feeling him more and more and Matt even felt him this past week! Feeling them move is one of my favorite parts of pregnancy! I can't wait to feel him move and see him change positions and turn. Right now he's transverse, but I'm sure he'll flip. It doesn't really matter since I'll be having a c-section, but I hope he flips just so I feel more comfortable as he grows.

We're really excited for his arrival! I'm stuck about his nursery and haven't found anything yet in terms of decorations, any ideas please send them my way! Ellie is ecstatic to have a little brother and talks about him all the time. Every night before bed, she talks to him, sings him a song, and give my belly a kiss. It's the sweetest thing I've ever seen!

Now for the fun part! I'm partnering with Pink Blush for a $75 giveaway! They have so many cute spring and summer items right now- lots of dresses and cute tops! To be eligible, you must reside in the US, have not won a Pink Blush giveaway in the last 6 months, and there's 3 easy ways to enter! The giveaway runs from 5/9 - 5/12 and a winner announced next week! Best of luck and thank you for stopping by!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, May 8, 2017

Mother's Day Gift Guide

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Didn't the year JUST start? I can't believe we're already into May and nearly halfway done with the year so far! Mother's Day is this weekend and I have some great picks for you and the mother's in your life, all of which you'll get in time to celebrate! I own a lot of these and the ones I don't are all on my wish list. We don't have any plans yet for the day, it's still up in the air, but I'm looking forward to a day with family .

Makeup Bag
A new makeup bag is another goodie that I think a lot of women rarely buy for themselves and just use what they have til it falls apart. At least that’s what I do! Right now, I’m using two bags- one for my makeup and the other for my brushes. I would love to get a large travel case where I could keep them together, but separated. I’ve found a few super cute ones (Victoria Secret is totally stepping up their game!), I love this one, this one, and this one is adorable! My SILs gave me this adorable palm leaf one for my birthday and I absolutely love it! It's the perfect size! I'm so glad I was able to condense my two bags into one.

Curling Wand Trio
This wand is so popular and I see it on every blog and Instagram and I've become obsessed. Plus, they're so pretty, I love the white and rose gold. Every girl swears that this wand works miracles and I believe them, their hair is perfectly curled!

Oh my goodness I need a new pair like yesterday. The last real pair of sunnies I bought was four years ago and I’ve since bought a ton of cheapies, but I think it’s finally time to get myself a new pair for summer. Matt gave me these pair for our anniversary and I absolutely love them! I love the style of these, but also love these!

Ring Stack
I'm OBSESSED with my Everly rings and wear them daily! All of her rings are stunning and I love mixing metals and styles to create new looks or just wearing them alone for a simple look. My rings from them is growing and she's having a HUGE Mother's Day sale right now to get a stack at a great price. Trust me, you're gonna become addicted!

Market Bag
I love the look of a cute farmers market bag, there's so many great options! This is such a cute and functional gift! This one is a great size and I love the mix of color that's mixed in and the leather handles.

How gorgeous is this metallic and glitter shadow? I have no idea where I’d exactly where this, church? But mama likes and I want it! The gold color is gorgeous and I’ve watched about 100 YouTube reviews and applications and can’t stop thinking about it!

Dough Bowl
I love the look of a dough bowl and fall in love with one every time I see it on Pinterest or home d├ęcor posts on IG. I would love to have one, but have no idea where I would put it at this time. Our little spitfire Emma destructs everything possible and loves to throw anything that fits in her hand so anything I would fill our bowl with would end up elsewhere. I think this would make a great gift, and something a little unexpected.

How gorgeous are these studs? I absolutely love them and they’re perfect for everyday and special occasions. They are available in three colors- silver, rose gold, and gold. They’re a staple piece for me and make a lovely gift.

What are you wishing for? What are you getting your mothers?

Thursday, April 6, 2017

How I Pack for Toddlers with JJ Cole Backpack

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I've been rocking a diaper bag for almost four years now and I definitely consider myself a pro. With two toddlers under my belt and a new baby coming this fall, I've learned all the essentials for any outing! Finding the right diaper bag can be a bit tough, JJ Cole offers a variety of options and features, styles, and I love their color options!

My diaper bag has been stuffed to the brim with all the baby necessities, then it changed as Ellie grew up. Then, I had to start over with Emma, but I knew exactly what I really needed and what we could go without. Now that they're both toddlers, it's probably the easiest diaper bag I've ever packed!

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Gender Reveal + First Trimester Recap

Good morning! Here's a fun post about our little one, we found out the gender a few weeks ago, but have been keeping it to ourselves. I had an appointment yesterday and confirmed the gender again, we found out early so I wanted to be sure! This first trimester has seriously flown right by. This has to be the quickest of any of my pregnancies, I guess two little ones will keep you busy like that! I can’t believe we were able to find out the gender so early on- we had to wait so long to find out with Eleanor and Emma had her legs crossed or the umbilical cord between her legs every time and it took forever!

I found out right at 12 weeks this time around, during my NT scan. The nurse was really nice and I asked her if she thought it would be possible to tell. She said that it would be really hard, the baby would have to be in just the right position, and that wasn’t what the appointment was technically for. Then we just chitchatted about old wives tales, life, work, etc. Then she asked me if I wanted to see the baby’s gender and turned the screen…

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Friday, March 24, 2017

Friday Faves

Happy Friday everyone! This is just a quick post, sharing a few favorites and thoughts from this week. I have some posts scheduled for next week and some pregnancy updates- and the gender reveal! I tried to get them done this week, but it was just too busy with work, my crazy girls, and lack of sleep.

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Monday, March 13, 2017

Weekend Recap & OOTD: Pink Blush Stripes

Happy Monday! This past weekend was so busy and just flew right by. Friday night the girls and I stayed in and watched the new Tangled Before Ever After on Disney- it's pretty cute. Ellie is so excited for the new tv show to start, I'm glad they did the movie first instead of after a few episodes. Why do they do that? It was so annoying with Elena, show me the movie and back story first!

Then Saturday we were on the go, go, go. We had dance class, a Costco run, lunch with Nana and Papa, then we headed down to Fallbrook for my niece's recital (she killed it! Her team took 1st place!). We were so tired after the day so we ended the night the best way we could- with some In n Out and then a stop for an Oreo shake! We were STUFFED!

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Friday, March 10, 2017

Friday Faves

Happy freaking Friday everyone! Is it possible for a week to both fly and crawl by? That's how I feel this week has gone. I've been so incredibly busy these last few weeks and so tired/lazy thanks to first trimester, it's been quite the whirlwind as I play catch up and add to my already full plate.

Thank you all again SO much for all your sweet words this week. I'm so happy to finally share the news. I love being pregnant and I'm so excited to be on this journey one more time. I love following other's pregnancies and all the love and excitement as their due date approaches. Are you interested in  bump dates? I want to journal it for myself, but I'm not sure how much I'll share since it's my third one and you guys, depending on how long you've been reading/following, may have seen it all! Maybe just some posts sprinkled in? I'm not sure. Any feedback is welcome!

I'm really trying to get back into the swing of things here on LLP, so far in 2017 I've gone from posting 3-4 times a week to nothing for a week or two. Maybe second trimester will be better for my energy levels! Either way, I'm excited to be back this week with a third post and sharing Friday Faves with you guys, I love putting together these posts and sharing little bits of life, products, shop, etc with everyone.

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Wednesday, March 8, 2017

OOTD: Baby Blues

Now that the cat's out of the bag I can bust out all my fave bump friendly outfits. I'm definitely showing, my uterus said "third baby? I got you!" and then exploded. Right now I'm at that awkward stage where a lot of maternity clothes are too big and my regular clothes are getting kinda tight. As soon as I knew we were expecting I headed over to Pink Blush because they have the cutest stuff and a lot of styles that work from beginning to end or postpartum.
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Monday, March 6, 2017

Our Little Announcement- Baby 3 is on its way!

We are so excited to finally share the secret we've been keeping since the new year started- our family is growing and we're adding another little one! We are over the moon that we're expecting, it was a welcome surprise!

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Thursday, February 9, 2017

Valentine Gifts for Her

Valentine’s is just around the corner, and I love all the hearts, pink, and glitter it brings with it. I mean, I typically will wear bright pink or red lips all month long, so bring it on! Here’s a few things I have my eye on for the season that will get lots of use as we make our way into spring and then summer. Are you making Valentine plans this year?

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Wednesday, February 8, 2017

OOTD: A Valentines Look

Can you believe Valentine's day is just a week away!? Didn't this year just start and Valentines is just around the corner! This year is flying by. I love this flirty red dress, I'm such a sucker for ruffles. It's a bright cherry red and it's perfect for warm weather (not that we've had much yet here). I know I'll be wearing it all summer, it will pair perfectly with some gladiator sandals or as a cover up.

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Monday, February 6, 2017

My Favorite Diaper Bag- Jujube has it All!

One of my top baby product suggestions for parents is a good diaper bag. You’ll use it almost daily, it gets tossed around, things spill on it, it needs to keep a gazillion items inside, it’s important to invest in one that’s going to keep up with you! It's an investment piece that can last you years if you choose the right one. There’s a ton of options for you to choose from, but we love Jujube and I’ll tell you why! We prefer to use a backpack diaper bag so we have our hands free and we have the Jujube Be Right Back and the Be Quick in Chrome and I love that it works for both Matt and I. Jujube offers a variety of styles, colors, and prints, I had a hard time choosing which style and print I liked best!

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Thursday, January 26, 2017

We Love BookRoo!

If you’ve been around here long, you’ll know that I’m a total book nerd. I’ve always loved to read, even as a child. I remember going to the library all the time with my mother and grandmother, reading at night on the porch outside, and staying up late to finish my latest novel. Reading has always been an escape for me and I can’t stand the days between books! I love to read on my lunch breaks at work and any free time at home. It's important to me to develop my children's love of reading and set the example for them. We read to the kids every night as part of our evening routine and they always receive a book or two for holidays and special events. Reading helps with their communication, brain development, speech, promotes academic excellence, and the list goes on and on. Plus, it's fun! Let me tell you why we love our BookRoo subscriptions,

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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Recent OOTDs- IG Round Up

The rain here has been INSANE! I haven't seen it rain this hard or flood the streets this badly since I was in high school. Incidentally, it was the first year I lived here and really made an impression on me. I compare all rains to that year because it was so crazy. As soon as second week of January hits, I'm fully ready for Spring. All I can think about is florals, pastels, brights, and sandals. I can't wait, it's one of my favorite seasons! I've ordered a few things I'm waiting to come in and I can't wait for sunshine and warmth! Until then I'm just trying to stay dry!

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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

How I Whiten my Teeth at Home

With the new year upon us, I have several goals and resolutions this year I fully plan on keeping. I know I’m one of many who have the same mindset, but I’ve been thinking about 2017 and what I want to accomplish for several months and have narrowed it down and focused on what is really important to me and my family. One thing that seems to be on everyone’s list each year is their health. This year, I don’t have a fitness goal, but I want to focus on my overall health, including my teeth!

Eleanor had a dentist appointment a while ago and she did amazing! I was so proud that she didn’t have any cavities and knew that our hard work of daily brushing and flossing have paid off. Matt and I were so concerned about setting our children up for success in having healthy teeth by watching what they’re eating and when, using a timer to brush their teeth, using the right toothpaste for their age that I’ve put my own teeth health on the back burner. How can I expect my children to maintain healthy teeth if I’m not setting a good example myself?

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Thursday, January 12, 2017

Best Beauty Purchases 2016

Morning! Some of my favorite posts to read at this time of the year is people’s favorite posts, best of, or recaps. I just love looking back and seeing all the good and positive from one year and heading into the new year with hope and happiness. Another favorite post of mine to share and to read from other’s are their favorite beauty products! When I initially went to write this post, I didn’t think I had too much to share, but then when I reviewed my Instagram and published posts- I had a lot! I was pretty successful in the beauty product department for 2016 and didn’t really have any stinkers, but today I’m sharing just my absolute favorites of the year with you!

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Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Product Review: Tried and True Image Skincare Favorites + Giveaway!

Several years ago, I tried my first Image Skincare product and after using it for a few weeks I became a lifelong customer. Finding the right skincare product can be trying and can follow a series of trial and error. It you have sensitive or problematic skin, it can even be emotional to try a product and not see any results or worse yet adverse results.

All my life, I’ve had pretty even skin that tends to dry out and can be sensitive at times. I never really had an issue using any product (as long as I bought the sensitive version of it), but never saw a change in my skin. Not a single product brought my skin to life, evened out the skin tone of my rosy cheeks, or worked with what I had naturally to make it better and stand out. It just did its job in the laziest way possible and I had no results one way or another. None of this is true for Image. After a few weeks, my skin brightened up, I could wear less makeup, and even with long nights nursing babies my skin never looked better.

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Thursday, January 5, 2017

OOTD: Bell Sleeves

Good morning everyone! How is everyone's first full week of the new year? Mine has been so-so, but I still feel great about the year and reaching my goals. Going back to work and waking up to an alarm has been pretty tough, and I forgot my keys in our other car on Tuesday! Oh my gosh you guys. At least each day is a new start right?

Today I'm sharing this gorgeous bell sleeve top (available in six colors!!) and is on sale for $12!! I love it! It's a nice thick fabric and is perfect with jeans and boots or slacks and heels. It's such a simple and chic top that's was to wear a bunch of different ways

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Sunday, January 1, 2017

Our Christmas Break

Happy New Year everyone! I hope all of you had a wonderful and magical holiday! I can't believe how quickly this past month, year, and holidays went! Wasn't it just the start of December?

Our Christmas break was so fun and memorable. It was one of the best Christmases I've had! Matt and I both have had the last ten days off work and I've loved being home together. Our vacation had a good mix of both busy and fun. We baked, watched Christmas movies, stuffed our bellies, crafted, and relaxed. Here's a quick recap of our break!

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