NON-Maternity Maternity Clothes

When I found out I was pregnant and felt like this one was going to REALLY happen, I realized I needed clothes.  I had maternity clothes but last time I was pregnant was different for a few reasons.  First: I had all of my BFF’s maternity clothes so I barely bought anything.  Second: I was working in the office 100% of the time and NOT going to court.  Third: I was pregnant for summer and early fall.

Long story short.  Very few of the maternity clothes I had would work, at least not for the duration of the pregnancy.  So I emailed my Front Door Fashion stylist Carson and asked her if they did maternity styling.  The answer?  At first a disappointing “No.”  But then she surprised me.  She said “Even though we don’t CARRY maternity clothes, I think I can style you with other clothes that you will like and will work for your pregnancy.”

Intriguing.  Clothes I can wear WHILE pregnant but also when I’m not?  I like this idea.

Let’s face it.  Having kids is expensive.  And it’s not just the whole doctors appointments, hospital births, baby supplies, baby clothes, furniture, etc.  But BEING pregnant is expensive because MOST of our wardrobes will NOT work while pregnant.  Add to that, I am going to Federal Court a lot now and I can’t just wear whatever there.  I was desperate for some NICE clothes.  But I didn’t want to spend a ton of money on NICE clothes that I will wear for 6 months and get rid of.  It sucks.

So I asked Carson to send me a box.

Have I mentioned before how much I love Carson?  I have, haven’t I?

The box came yesterday.

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Let’s start with these two Trina Turk dresses.  How much do you love them???  I do.  Again, these are NOT maternity dresses but they should work for most of my pregnancy.  Not pictured is a beautiful scarf sent with the black dress and a blazer that I absolutely LOVED but it was just too small on my arms.  :(  I kept both of these dresses and the scarf.  Luckily I do have other black blazers I feel like I can wear with the black dress and it will be perfect for court.

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Next I had two pairs of leggings, this ivory shirt and scarf and this red tank and poncho (Tank and Poncho are also Trina Turk).  I didn’t keep the leggings because I have a ton of leggings (maternity and non-maternity) already.  I also sent back the ivory shirt.  I really liked it, but it was a little snug on my arms and I was afraid I wouldn’t like it enough to wear it if it was snug there.  I did keep the scarf, red tank and poncho.  I won’t be wearing the poncho to court, but I will be wearing it to the office.  Again, none of these clothes are labeled “Maternity” but should work for the duration of my pregnancy.

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Black pencil skirt.  It’s perfect.  It’s going to work the entire pregnancy because of where it lays on me.  The blue shirt is just adorable and will work for most of the pregnancy (well, maybe all – as long as I don’t get as big as I did with the twins, it should make it a long way).  The skirt and blue top are PERFECT for court.  Throw on a blazer and the look is complete.  The red floral shirt is very flowey (is that a word?  Probably not) and is perfect for me to wear to work at the office.  It’s a little bold for the courts I currently practice in but it’s perfect for work and also play, I think.  And to think when I started using FDF, I said no to florals.  I’m glad Carson changed my mind!

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Finally, black pants and another blue top with a black blazer.  It’s already a perfect courtroom look!!!  This blazer fit nicely and I can wear it with the above outfits when I want a looser fitting blazer.  Also, Carson mentioned this outfit would be so comfortable I would feel like I was in my pjs.  She was RIGHT.  Next the midi skirt and black shirt.  Super comfy and perfect for days in the office.

Not pictured is a black tank by Tees by Tina.  Her tees are amazing.  If you don’t have any tanks by her, go get one.  You will not regret it.  Also not pictured is a great matte silver necklace, which I kept.

So if you were keeping count, I kept everything but a blazer that was snug on the arms, an ivory shirt that was snug on the arms and two pairs of leggings because I didn’t really need them.

Again, FDF does NOT carry maternity clothes but Carson was nice enough to pull from what they had to give me things she felt would work for my pregnancy.  THIS was a win.  I will be able to wear all of this for the pregnancy and after.  I’m already wearing the first Trina dress pictured.  :)

If you want to look into getting a box from FDF, click here!  It’s my referral code and I’ll get a credit (BUT through the end of September, you get one too!).

Oh Maternity Clothes

I’m posting two posts today because I got a LOT of maternity clothes this week.  First, I went back to Stitch Fix for some stuff.  I told my stylist I was pregnant and I needed some casual items and some professional items.  I Have learned this week that my version of professional and others version of professional are not the same.

I received:

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This Asher Maternity Dress for $138.  It was ok.  It might be cute with a bump.  But for $138 I need more than just ok and “might be cute.”  Also, it is once again navy and orange.  I am a Hokie.  I am not a UVA grad.  Navy and orange are not part of my daily attire.  ;)

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This Mariana Maternity Empire Waist Stripe knit top.  I felt like this was something my kids would wear and I wasn’t sure if it would work with the bump for the whole pregnancy.  It was the most professional item I received.  Cost: $48.  It was returned.

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This Adriano Maternity knit Dolman top.  I did like this one.  So I kept it.  The fit was nice.  It should work for the whole pregnancy and I could possible dress it up with a skirt for days in the office.  Cost: $68.

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This Abia Maternity knit top. I felt about this one like I felt about the above shirt.  I think I can dress it up some. It’s comfortable and should fit the entire pregnancy.  Cost: $48.

Also, I am wearing a pair of Kera Maternity Skinny jeans above which were in my box.  Eh.  I didn’t love them.  They weren’t particularly comfortable and for $118, I want comfy.

I ended up keeping two shirts.  Not bad.

I also ordered a BumpStyle Box.  This seemed a lot like Front Door Fashion, which we all know I love, so I thought I’d try it.  When I pulled out the clothes, I sent a text to my bestie which said “Apparently my version of professional and their version of professional is not the same.  Unless my profession is hooker.  Which it’s not.”

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Those are all the clothes I received.  I kept three things.  The black leggings because we can all use black leggings in our lives.  The Coral dress.  And the black floral skirt.  The red dress, which was by Tees by Tina, which is a brand I ADORE, was WAY too curve hugging for me to wear to the office, much less to court.  The white dress was quite see through (which is why I left the leggings on in the picture).  I felt like I was trying to fly in the poncho type shirt.  The red shirt had elephants on it.  Which is something my 3 year old would wear.  The blue shirt was ok, and it said it was maternity, but there is NO way it would stretch over a belly in the future.  The maxi was ok but it had zero shape to it.  And the jeans…well, Honestly I liked them.  But they were crazy expensive for jeans I will only wear for 6 months.  Oh, they also sent spanx.  I kept those.

So, all in all, these two boxes resulted in a couple of ok things but I was not overly impressed.  I don’t think that I will do another bump style box.  I might do one more stitch fix during the pregnancy simply because I will need winter clothes at some point.

Just wait though…as always, Carson at Front Door Fashion NEVER disappoints me.  And they don’t even CARRY maternity clothes!

So that happened

My husband and I have been through a lot when it comes to babies.  First we spent years trying to get pregnant with the twins (literally years…3 to be exact).  After two surgeries and plans for IVF, we were able to get pregnant without the IVF –  we found out one week before our IVF preliminary appointment that we were pregnant.

Then I had a twin pregnancy.  Which is not the same as a normal pregnancy.  A twin pregnancy is harder.  I can’t imagine ever having a triplet or quadruplet or higher order multiple pregnancy because the twin pregnancy almost killed me.  Again, I mean that literally.  I almost died.

And then we got pregnant really easily without even trying when the twins were barely a year old.  And we lost that baby around 7 weeks.

Then we spent another year trying to get pregnant, which we did.  Only to lose that baby at 10 weeks.

Then we spent another 14 months assuming we just wouldn’t get pregnant again.

Only to actually get pregnant.

So here I am.  12 weeks pregnant.  Waiting for this one to end, hoping it doesn’t, and worrying about what will happen in 6 months when it comes time to deliver.  Will I develop preeclampsia again?  Will I end up with HELLP again?  Will I even remember being in labor this time?  Will this baby actually make it to term?

Knowing that 90% of the problems I had in the last pregnancy were because I was carrying twins makes it easier to think I WON’T have those issues this time.  But I also know it’s still a possibility.  Chances of preeclampsia in subsequent pregnancies is higher if you’ve had it.  I would assume that also means the chances of developing HELLP are also higher, since it’s a severe form of Preeclampsia.

So now we wait.  We wait for February when we can, hopefully, bring a beautiful little girl or boy into this world.

And I try not to fall asleep at my desk.

Twins are twins. end of story.

The Today show has been running a twin series this week. It started with a cute segment on Jenna and Barbara Bush (which is worth watching because they are so cute).  Then there was a segment on Nature vs. Nurture which looked at a set of identical twins separated at birth and two boys who were born a couple months apart and adopted by the same family (these boys are apparently called “Virtual Twins” – more on my thoughts on that in a minute).

Am I the only one who thinks a news report on Nature vs. Nurture should include more than one set of twins?  The amazing thing they discovered?  Twins are alike.  Really?  Who would have thought.

As for the Virtual Twins, they are also alike.  That’s because they are siblings.  Adopted by the same family.  Dear people of the world – Twins share a womb.  You cannot be a twin and not share a womb.  And by share, I mean SHARE as in use that same womb at the same time.  Just because you have two children who are the same age, that does not make them twins.  I get it, people want twins.  But unless you have two babies born from the same mother at the same(ish) time, you do not have twins.  Period.  I know, sometimes one is born a month before the other because of medical issues and they keep one in but that’s really rare and, let’s look at this again, they shared a WOMB.  Ugh.

Ok, anyway, continuing with the twin series, this morning I saw and article the Today show posted about “11 Ways for Parents to Celebrate their Twins’ Individuality.”

Is there really a need for this kind of article?

“Don’t call them the twins.”  You know what?  They are twins.  And that’s freaking special.  Most kids in this world don’t get to have a twin.  They don’t get to have that relationship that has a bond like no other.  Most kids would give their right arm for a twin because twins are freaking cool.  Why not celebrate the fact that they are twins?  You know what my girls do when they meet someone new?  They immediately tell them they are a twin and ask if their new friend has a twin as well.  Because they know how special it is to be a twin.  Don’t ruin that for your kids.  Embrace it. Love it.  Teach them to love it.

“Sign them up for different activities.”  Why is this even advice?  Do you make all your kids do the exact same things?  No.  But if they want to, do you let them?  Yes.

“Don’t dress them alike.”  When you have twins you have a VERY short window where you are given the ability to dress them alike yourself.  Like the first 30 months.  After that, they get opinionated and they will tell you if they want to dress alike.  So if you WANT to dress your kids alike, do it.

“Allow them to learn at their own speed.”  Again, why is this advice?  No two kids are the same, even identical twins.  We all know this.  You know what the cool thing about twins is?  They teach each other.  I have a video of Little C actually teaching Little G to crawl.  They were only 8 or 9 months old at the time.

“No need to rhyme.”  Ok, I agree with that.  Nothing annoys me more than rhyming names for twins (or using the same letter so that people will know they are twins).  But if YOU like it, go for it.  Who cares?

“Let them be themselves.”  Really?  You think you can control that?  You think you can make your kids act JUST alike?  You think you can force your kids to act differently?  Good luck.

“Spread out their firsts.”  Again, I say really?  You’re going to let one of your twins get a haircut first and make the other wait?  Do you even have twins?  No, you don’t.  Because twins are twins.  Twins like to do things together, at least mine do.  If I were to take Little G for a haircut and tell Little C she just had to wait do you know what would happen?  Pure meltdown.  Little C would feel left out and like she wasn’t as special as G.  No thank you.  I’ll let my kids experience everything they want to experience TOGETHER.  And if they don’t want to do things together, then they don’t have to.  But you cannot force kids to be different.  They are who they are.

“At The end of the day they are just like any other siblings.”  Except they’re not.  They’re twins.  And that’s special.  So don’t try to undermine their connection and their bond by saying they’re just like other siblings.  They aren’t.  They are siblings, but they’re so much MORE than that.

I skipped over parts of that article that didn’t matter much to me but as you can see, I didn’t much agree with the ways “parents” said to celebrate their twins own identities.  You know how you can celebrate your twins identities?

By letting them be themselves.

Period.

Front Door Fashion Part 2

Two months ago, I received my first box from Front Door Fashion and I LOVED it.  Absolutely loved it.  I told myself I could not order a box every month, but maybe every other month.  So when the time came I was so excited to order my second box.

I was NOT disappointed.

Honestly, it’s like Carson knows me.  She knows just how far to push me out of my comfort zone in fashion without going TOO far.  When my box came, here’s what I saw:

FDFI love that the clothes come in a garment bag.  It’s a nice touch.  As you can see, there are notes attached to each set of outfits.  The first dress I saw, I immediately loved.

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So cute!  I loved the cardi with it as well.  That was easy.

The second dress was also a slam dunk.  It’s white, which is not a color I wear often so it’s not a color I own a lot of (let’s face it, I have kids and kids are messy) but it was so beautiful and by Trina Turk – one of my favorite designers.  I’ll just wear it when I’m not around the kids . Or spaghetti.  :)

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Next was a pair of pants with a couple shirt options.  Carson warned me the trousers were SUPER long and would need hemmed.  THAT was an understatement (ok, probably not for most women, but I am short).  I loved the fit though so I’ll have them hemmed.  I also loved the tops.  You’ll see my look of not quite being sure of the cardi in the last pic but, honestly, I like it enough to keep it so I am.  :)  The cardigan in the FIRST pic was amazing.  It has a split back and shows the detail of the shirt.  LOVE it.

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Next were a couple pairs of shorts.  The first was a simply khaki pair with a neutral shirt.  They are shorter than I usually wear but honestly, they were so comfortable that I loved them.

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Next were the bright orange shorts.  This is where Carson takes me RIGHT to the edge of my comfort zone and, honestly, when I first looked at them I thought “no.”  But when I put them on with the tank, which Carson says is her favorite tank (which, honestly, is probably MY favorite tank as well, so comfortable and flattering), I was sold.  She sent another top in the same orange color as well which I like, but I’m not sure that I will wear it with those shorts, maybe with the khaki ones more often than the orange ones, but I did love it so I kept it as well.

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Next I had two skirts.  I’m loving maxi dresses and maxi skirts this season and she sent me a pleated maxi skirt with two top options.  I’m short, so I definitely need to wear a heel under it but it is adorable in person and on.

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Finally is the striped skirt for work.  The cut is super flattering and the black top she sent to wear with it is probably one of my favorite things from this box.  The other top is also really comfortable and I think flattering with the skirt.

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Finally, jewelry.  I received two pieces of jewelry this fix.  A pair of earrings and a bracelet.  Both were in a shade of blue and both were kept.

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Did you keep track?  If so, you realize I kept EVERY single item from this box.  All of it.  I loved it all.

Also, for those who are curious, I do still get a stitch fix box every three months.  I kept everything out of my most recent box, but there was one issue.  Here’s what I received:

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Does anyone see the issue, other than the fact every item was blue?  No?  See that last shirt?  Now look here.  Yup, I got the exact same shirt 10 months ago from them.  I ended up keeping it again and giving it to the bestie because it was cheaper to keep it all than to send back that one thing.

What does Front Door Fashion do differently?  I think they may keep better records of what they have sent you.  Carson even referred back to my prior box and mentioned some pieces that would look good with my new pieces.  It’s definitely a more personal experience although, like I said before, I do enjoy both services greatly.

I can’t wait until it’s time to get another FDF box though!  :)

I hate mother’s day…and my birthday

I know, Mother’s Day was six days ago, but honestly, I haven’t had it in me to write anything recently.

I’m a mother and I hate Mother’s Day.  I know that sounds brutal and it doesn’t make sense.  I had my first Mother’s Day three years ago.

It was supposed to be amazing.  My first Mother’s day AND, even better, it was my BIRTHDAY.  Growing up I always loved with my birthday fell on Mother’s Day because the year I was born, it was Mother’s Day.  It doesn’t get much better than that.  So my first Mother’s Day ever falling on my birthday was supposed to be magical.

But 2 and a half hours before that Mother’s Day began, my father died.

I was.  I am my daddy’s girl.  And to say that day was devastating would be such a drastic understatement.  I don’t even remember much about that night other than getting into my husband’s truck (and forgetting my children, who were upstairs asleep.  Thankfully, my husband remembered to get them).  The drive took forever and no time at the same time.

My dad was dead before the paramedics even arrived.

I remember the next day, people wishing me a happy birthday on Facebook and every single notice made me angry.  Didn’t people know my dad was dead?  Well, no, they didn’t because I hadn’t said anything on Facebook.  After I did, the happy birthday wishes ended and the sad “I can’t believe this happened on your birthday” posts started.

So now, I hate Mother’s day and I don’t like celebrating my birthday.  Because both those things remind me of the single worst day of my life.

I need….

There are lots of things I want in my life.  I want a clean house.  I want a new king size bed (to replace the queen that gets super crowded with two kids and a husband in it with me).  I want to update my bathroom.  I want…I want…I want…

But there are things I need.  Things I need to do and learn.

I need to

  • Put away my cell phone and play with my kids.  They’re only little once and text messages can wait.
  • Make fun crafts at home with the girls.  I work so I only have a few hours a day to spend with them.
  • Spend less time worrying about cleaning and more time making messes with my kids.
  • Listen to my girls wants.  And whenever possible, do what they want instead of what I think is “right.”
  • Be a better mom.

Now the truth is, most of my friends reading this will read that last one and say “No, you are a great mom.”  I may be.  But don’t we all have room for improvement?  If we run ourselves ragged trying to do this and do that and make practices and cook dinner and everything else in the world, when do we spend time with those little people that we so greatly wanted and that we created?

This morning, as we got ready for daycare, I realized I was spending too much time worrying about what the girls were going to wear.  They didn’t want to wear this shirt or that shirt or those pants or those shoes.  Finally, instead of dictating what they were going to do I listened to them.  I listened as Little C said she wanted to wear her purple high heels (that match her Rapunzel dress).  Ok I finally said.  You can wear them.  She giggled in excitement and took off running to the shoe chest.  Little G asked if she could wear high heels too so of course I said yes, as I put extra shoes in a bag to take to daycare.  When I next turned around I saw Cinderella and Rapunzel standing before me.  The twins had changed not just their shoes, but also their clothes and put on dress up clothes.

“Mommy?” Little C said quietly.  “Can I be ‘Punzel at school?”

So today, I let my princesses go to school as princesses.  Step one in listening and being a better mom.

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