Thoughts for Thursday: Blogging and Privacy

Welcome back to another Thoughts for Thursday! Remember you can blog about whatever you want! Just grab the button and link up below.

Thoughts for Thursday

This is a subject that has been weighing on me heavy lately.   I absolutely love this blog and sharing pieces of my life with you here.  I also love my family a lot and care a lot about their privacy and safety.   Recently a few of my blogger friends have come forward discussing privacy and some of the scary things that are going on out there on the web with kids and social media.   Stephanie has a great post here if you want to check it out.    Just seeing these things has really got me thinking.   

I could probably write a 100 paragraph post on the subject but I'm going to spare you and just say that I'm going to be changing things a bit around here.  I'm still going to share about my personal life, experiences in motherhood, talk about my boys but I might just use less pictures and there will definitely be more watermarking.   I still haven't decided what the best option is for me yet and I'm trying to work through a way that won't take away from this blog but will still protect my boys from the scary things out there. 

If you have any suggestions I would love to hear them.  If you have kids I urge you to read Stephanie's post especially if you use instagram a lot!
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Girls Trip Recap and Leaving my Babies for the First Time

Happy Hump Day! Sorry I have been MIA the past week but I decided to stay unplugged as much a possible while I was away and it was so nice. 

Last Thursday my mom, sister, and I left Baltimore and headed down to St. Pete's Beach, Florida for a much needed girls vacation and to celebrate my mom's birthday.  We couldn't have picked a better weekend to go because the temperature dropped back into the 40s/50s at home and was mid 80s the whole time we were in Florida. 

A few of you asked on instagram where some of my stuff was from so I've included links below the picture. 

I think the Loft and Vineyard Vines dress run true to size.   The J.Crew tunic/cover up is big so I would size down in that.  The Trina Turk one piece is my new favorite!! I got so many compliments on it.  I took the advice on Nordstrom and sized up and I think that was perfect.  It's a great one piece that doesn't scream I'm a mom!

The trip was exactly what I didn't know I needed!  All we did was eat, drink, and lay on the beach.  The weather was perfect and I was really able to relax and not think about anything.  It was so refreshing to not be in mom mode for 4 days.

If you could pick up on the vibe from my posts leading up to our trip I was extremely nervous to leave my babies for four days.  I was scared about irrational things like plane crashes or car crashes but I'm also a huge control freak and the boys spend all day every day with me so I was very nervous they wouldn't be able to cope without me and would cry the whole time.  I did a really good job keeping it together until about an hour before I was supposed to leave and then I just lost it and cried all the way to the airport.  Thankfully with the help of some xanax (I'm a nervous flier) and a glass of wine I was fine by the time we boarded the plane.  

So how did everyone do?  GREAT!! Once we landed in Florida I was officially in vacation mode and had very little problem getting used to having no responsibility.  It was so nice to sleep in, read books, relax, and just be on my own time.  I feel so refreshed after this trip and it made me appreciate my boys and staying home with them so much more.   

The boys, Kyle, and my in-laws did great. They had so much fun together!  Every day was an adventure with a trip to Annapolis or to our local animal farm, along with chick fil-a trips, ice cream, and all the fun stuff we don't get to do all the time.  My in-laws also loved getting to spend 4 days with the boys and really enjoyed their time with them.  

If you are thinking about taking a trip and leaving your babies I saw GO FOR IT!!   If my mom hadn't have scheduled the trip and given it to me as a surprise I honestly don't think I would have gone but I'm so glad I did.  You and your kids will be better for your time away.   As much as I love being a mom I also love just being Natalie and it was nice to have time away to remember who I am without my mom title.  Kyle and I are already planning an anniversary trip since I know I can leave my boys and they'll be ok.  

I promise I will be back to regular posting next week! 

Anyone have trouble leaving their kids the first time?  Anyone still not left your kids yet? 


Random Thoughts for Thursday

Happy Thursday!  Remember you can write about whatever you want, grab the button, and link up below. 

Thoughts for Thursday

- First of all I want to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who stops by and reads this little blog. I haven't been doing the best job responding to comments but I wanted to let you all know that I read every comment. 

- Secondly you need to run, not walk to your nearest Target and buy this shirt! Not only is it super flattering but it's only $12!!  I picked it up in black and white stripe and pink and navy stripe.  My stripe obsession continues to grow. 

- I'm heading out today for a much needed girls weekend with my mom and sister.  I'm very excited for some kid free time but also feeling a little guilty.  I know I shouldn't be and deserve it but I'm not sure what I'm going to do with myself not having my babies to look after 24/7!  I also may be a control freak who left my husband detailed, detailed instructions. 

- I am hoping to read a book while we're away.  I have a few that have been sitting on my Kindle half read that I'm hoping to get through but if you have any suggestions I would love to hear them. 
- Miller has recently started becoming obsessed with Matthew and wants to help out as much as he can.  He also loves to go over to him and say "Hi" and give him hugs and kisses.  It's the absolute sweetest. 

- So Kyle got me hooked on Botched?  It's two of the housewive husbands and they fix people with screwed up plastic surgery.   It's like a train wreck.  I don't want to watch but I can't look away.  Some of these people are just obsessed with plastic surgery.

- Alright well I've gotta go finish packing!  Follow along on instagram @eastcoastnat as I plan to overgram this trip!

Now it's your turn!
Grab the button and link up to Annie and Natalie  on your Thoughts for Thursday post.
Use #thoughtsforthursdays on Instagram and tag us @homeofmalones and @eastcoastnat.
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Currently Loving: On Sale

The Saks Friends and Family is one of my favorite sales!  I try to use this sale to buy designer/name brand items that are rarely on sale.  This year it's 30% off which has to be the highest they have done in years!  If you missed out on snagging some Lilly Pulitzer for Target they have plenty of Lilly availabe for 30% off.   Use the code FRNFAM

J.Crew is offering 30% off full price and sale items with up to 50% off sale with the code TIMETOSHOP.   There are quite a few items I've been loving that I might snag! I love how often J.Crew has sales now, it makes it much easier to justify all my purchases!

Do you shop sale season?  Are there any big sales you wait for?  I try to wait for the seasonal friends and family sale for big purchases at department stores and the Nordstrom Anniversary sale in the summer 



Weekend Recap and Lilly for Target Thoughts

Happy Monday everyone! How is everyone doing today?  Coffee in hand, ready to tackle this week or still trying to peel yourself out from under the covers?!   We had such a busy but fun weekend and I'm pretty sure I'm still recovering from Friday night, anyone else suffer from the #twodayhangover after a night out?! or maybe it's the aftermath of almost getting trampled at Target for some Lilly that I'm still working through but either way this day snuck up on me but I'm ready to tackle it! 

Friday night was our big Junior League gala fundraiser event.  I'm a member and on the gala committee so this was the day I've been waiting for all year.  The event was a great success with some minor hiccups along the way (which is normal for any large event) but it went well, everyone enjoyed themselves and I got an adult night out to dress up and enjoy some cocktails.  It was well worth all the stress and anxiety leading up to it. 

Saturday we got up bright and early and treated ourselves to some McDonald's breakfast to put a dent in our hangovers before we loaded up the kids and headed up to PA for a friend's daughter's first birthday party.   I didn't take any pictures Saturday but the weather was gorgeous and perfect!  We were outside all day long hanging out with friends and enjoying the sunshine.  We stopped by Kyle's parent's house to have dinner with them and a few of his brothers so that was fun and Miller got to see his cousins, which is always a good time.  

 I haven't had McDonalds in over a year and it was so worth every calorie!

On Sunday mornning Kyle went golfing so my sister and I decided to brave the crowds and hit up the Lilly Pulitzer for Target sale!  Did anyone else go?  How was your Target?   I had to bring the boys with me so I wasn't one of the ones running when the doors opened but ours was crazy!! When we arrived around 7:45am there were about 30-40 people in front of us.  When the doors opened at 8am all hell broke loose.  I was shocked and saddened by the behavior I saw!  People were just running up to racks and ripping everything off they could and running away.  The scarves and accossories were cleaned out within a minute and then womens clothes were next.  The home good were scattered through out the store and they were gone just as fast.  I watched a girl just ripping scarves out of a Target employees hands and the employee looked terrified!   I'm not going to lie my sister and I probably could have gotten more if we didn't spend half the time laughing out loud at how insane people were being.  Seriously the way women were acting over this was almost hysterical.  

 We had a few pairs of the palazzo pants in hand after Pris realized it wasn't going to be civilized and grabbed the two pairs but they ended up being a XL and XXL so we put them back for people who could actually wear them.   I managed to get some appetizer plates and I had martini glasses and a hammock in my hand at one point but I quickly realized that I did not need either and I was not about to spend $150 on a hammock that would make Kyle say WTF?!  I do have to admit it was fun to be caught up in the chaos for a little bit with the crowd mentality of buy, buy, buy.

I do have a few gripes about the event though and not because I didn't get a bunch of stuff.  To be honest I more just wanted to see what they had then really buy anything.  What bothers me is the people who went there solely to buy items to re-sell them with a major mark up.  I understand that was limited collection but there are now over 27,000 listings for Lilly for Target items posted on ebay!  The prices that the sellers are trying to get are insane and some are more than real Lilly Pulitzer prices.  I hope that people won't pay them and force the sellers to return them to store.  The prints were very cute but remember the quality is Target level so it's not worth paying over $100 for something someone bought for $35. 
I heard horrible stories about young girls crying because they were hoping to finally be able to get some Lilly they could afford but instead got push and trampled by some crazy fans.  I heard stories of people sending their husbands in and the guys basically saying get out of my way I'm bigger and stronger and taking full racks of clothes.   Another person told me they watched a woman run over to the make up bags with her cart and with one fell swoop throw them all into her cart!  No one needs 10 make up bag so I'm assuming they're all listed on ebay now.  It's just sad that this is what our mentality has become these days.      

We had four large Targets to try from by us and it sounds like we went to one of the craizer ones.  Some of our friends that went to another local Target didn't get there until 9:30am and were still able to score a bunch of things.  
If you went I would love to hear about your experience and what you thought about it in general!  Are you a Lilly fan?  What did you think of the items you saw? 



Thoughts for Thursday: Master Bath Inspiration

**So sorry everyone!!! I thought I hit publish on my way out the door to the gym this morning and clearly I didn't!!** Apologies to everyone trying to link up! 

Welcome back to another Thoughts for Thursday! Remember you can write about whatever you want and link up below!

Thoughts for Thursday

We bought our house two years ago and as I've mentioned before we are slowly working on renovating/updating it.   We did our kitchen last winter which you can see some pieces of here and here.  I still owe you a full detailed post on that which I promise is coming next week!!   We are now moving on to our upstairs bathrooms.  First the master and then the hall bath.   I'm so excited to get started on this process. While the bathrooms were in good condition when we moved in they're still almost 30 years old and stuff is just wearing down and obviously not that pretty anymore.

We met with our contractor this week to go over the intial proposal and now comes the fun part.  Picking out the pretty stuff, as I like to call it!  I've been going through my bath Pinterest board and searching the internet all over for ideas.  I'm still not sure exactly what we'll do but here is my starting point.

Our master bath isn't gigantic but we're hoping that we'll be able to make some changes to make it more functional and pretty :)  Right now we only have one sink and a pretty tiny vanity so we're trying to see if we can get two sinks or at least extend out the vanity so there is more storage and counter space.  I would love some pretty mirrors and have no idea what direction I want to go with lighting but I'm thinking I might do sconces or keep the recessed lighting we have because we do have a bulkhead in the bathroom that can't be moved (well it can but it's $$$$ and we're not looking to spend a ton). 

 I promise to keep you all update and once we have the final plan I will share the before pictures and what we're going to do with it.

Has anyone recently completed a major bathroom renovation?  Any advice for me? 

Now it's your turn!
Grab the button and link up to Annie and Natalie  on your Thoughts for Thursday post.
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Flats: Take 'em or Leave 'em?

Since I'm 5'9 and have spent most of my life being taller than everyone I've always loved flats over heels.   Don't get me wrong I love a good pair of heels but there is nothing like someone saying "wow look how tall you are now, are you like 6'5 with those shoes on?" to make you just want to stick with flats.   Can any other tall girls relate? 
My mom on the other hand is 5'4 and I think has two pairs of flats in her closet.  Everything she wears has a heel of some sort or she feels too short. 

I'm in the market for some new "mom" flats- ie shoes I can run around with kids in and not worry about ruining and then some dressier flats for when I go out or I'm not with the kids. 

Here are some I'm loving: 

I found these while browsing Shopbop and I'm totally intrigued.  Has anyone tried this brand?  They are only $55 so I think I might get them to try.  

I've mentioned before that I'm a huge Toms fan and I'm loving this new navy stripe one.  I still haven't replaced my beloved gold herringbone ones because I haven't found a pattern I love but I think this might be it.  I saw them in person too and the picture doesn't do them justice. 

I'm really loving the woven leather for summer.  These remind me of a pair of sandals my mom had in the 80s/90s that I loved so I think that's why I like these. 

I've had my eye on these flats for awhile now and I think I just need to break down and buy them.  I've always been a Steve Madden fan and I feel like they will last you for years and won't break the bank at $60. 

I'm loving the look of these and think they would be so cute with shorts or skinny jeans.  The best part- they're from Target and only $24!!  I'm not sure I can pull them off because I'm not that trendy but I'm going to see if my Target has them today.  

I love these for summer!  I love a good peep toe and a peep toe flat is even better.  These remind me of a pair of Nine West peep toe wedges I used to have which is probably why I love them.  

These are a total splurge but have been on my wishlist forever.  Who doesn't love a classic ballet flat with a little scallop! 

Are you a flats or heels person?  Do you wear one more than the other?


Baby Matthew: 5 Months and Favorites

Some how I blinked and Matthew turned five months old, on April 4th!  I swear it goes by 100x faster the second time around.   I'm almost 10 days late on this but better late than never right?! 

- If I had to guess I would say you weight around 16lbs and are 26 inches long.  You don't seem to be as big as your brother at this age and it appears I'm going to have another skinny boy.  Of course at the rate you're going you and your big brother will probably be the same size come September.   The past month has been so much fun with your.  Your personality is coming through and you are just so easy going and laid back.  You love being a part of the family and watching your big brothers every move.   I love seeing how much you change everyday. 

Diet: You're about 80/20 breastmilk to formula.  My supply has completely dropped off which is exactly what happened with your brother around this time.   The only problem is that over the past two days you suddenly won't take a bottle!!  You've taken one fine for months but I think that you might be teething too because your appetite has been decreased over the past few days.   I'm hoping that's our only problem and nothing more since mama is supposed to go away for 3 days next weekend and we really need you to like that bottle!!

Clothes:  You still fit in most of your 3-6 month clothes but there are a few sleepers that are snug in length.  I see you staying in this size over the next month and I'm in no hurry to move you to 6-9 month clothes yet!

Health:  You've had a few sniffles here and there thanks to having an older brother but nothing too serious.  You did have a fever after your four month shots which is the first fever I've had with either babies in 21 months!  It was only 100.3 but man were you uncomfortable and cranky.  It was so sad seeing you like that.

Mood:  You are the happiest baby in the world! You smile all the time and are so laid back.  You are a typical second child and just completely go with the flow.   We can already see your personality coming through and you're definitely going to be more sensitive than your brother.  You get your feelings hurt easily and would prefer to be held and snuggled all day long.   You rarely ever cry but when you do you're usually pretty angry and frustrated.

Sleep:  You had a pretty bad four month sleep regression which we never really experienced with your brother because he was a horrible sleeper from the beginning.  Thankfully we are through it and we all survived.   You go down between 6:30-7pm, wake up at 10:30pm to eat and then again at 4:00am to eat.  You are usually up for the day around 6:30am.   You take about 3 naps a day but the time varies depending on what we have going on that day.  I try to make sure you have at least one of your naps in your crib or swing at home since sometimes your other ones are bound to be in the car. 

Milestones:  You love your hands and found your feet this month. You love to have one of them in your mouth at all times if you don't have a pacifier or Sophie.    You can roll from stomach to back and back to stomach but you don't do it continually yet.   You sit up really well in your bumbo seat and love, love, love the exersaucer.  You bounce in that thing non stop. 
You babble and scream all the time.  You giggle at everything.  I always felt like it was hard to make your brother laugh but you smile and laugh at everybody.  

Here are our baby gear favorites this month:

Matthew's Five Month Favorites

Bumbo seat-  You love this thing so that you can join us in all the action. We keep this on the kitchen table (I know soooo wrong) but you love to sit up here and watch your brother eat all his meals.  Don't worry mommy sits right next to you to monitor and avoid any falls. 

Sophie the giraffe- You LOVE this overpriced dog toy!! Miller was so-so with it but you love to have Sophie with you to chew on at all times.  

Baby bjorn carrier- Since you love to be carried and your brother is always running wild you spend a lot of time in this carrier strapped to me, but you love it.  Your brother was not a fan of being carried like this but you would stay in it all day long if I let you.  I still don't love the Baby Bjorn but haven't purchased a Ergo carrier yet because I'm hoping to find one second hand if possible. 

Avent Classic bottles- You babies always keep us guessing and you decided that you like the Avent Classic bottles much more than the Dr. Brown's ones your brother loved.  So that is what we're using these days, of course at this moment you don't seem to like bottles at all so we'll see!  My favorite part about these is so many less parts to clean so I hope you continue to like them. 

Bob Duallie stroller- You love going for walks and runs in this stroller with me and Miller.  You are usually asleep about 10 minutes into our walk and if you're awake you love for me to sit you up so you can see all the sites.  

Wubbanub pacifier-  You are still loving your wubbanub and thanks to the little stuffed animal you can usually pop that thing back into your mouth in the car or crib which saves me a lot of hassle and crying.  Whoever invented this is genius. 

Hanna Andersson Sleepers- We love these sleepers!  Since you and your brother are both long and lean I've found these to be my favorite sleepers since they don't have feet and fit snuggly.   The zipper also makes late night diaper changes so easy. 

Fisher Price Playmat- You love this playmat and could play on it all day.  I love watching you play with all the toys and ohhh and ahhh with the lights and music are playing.  I also love to watch you slam your legs around and giggle at yourself.  It's the cutest.  

Evenflo Exersaucer-  We brought out the exersaucer this month and you love it too.  You love to bounce but I think what you love most is that your big brother usually plays with it too while you're in it and you just babbble and smile at him the whole time.  It's the best to watch you two together.  

I can't believe how fast these five months have gone by Matthew and it feels like you've been a part of our family a lot longer than five months. We really can't remember a time before you.   We can't wait to see what the next month holds for and we can't wait to see what you learn next.



Random Thoughts for Thursday

Welcome back to another Thoughts for Thursday!  Remember you can write about anything you want, just grab the button and link up below.

Thoughts for Thursday
Here are some things I'm loving this week: 

-The Royals-  I am OBSESSED!  Anyone else?  I still have one episode to watch to get caught up but I think it might be my new favorite.  I could go on and on about the characters.  I love to hate Elizabeth Hurley's queen.  The girl they cast as her daughter could seriously be here 20 years ago. 

 Pioneer Woman's French Toast Casserole-  We made this for brunch on Easter morning and it is too good.  Seriously it tasted like dessert, almost like a bread pudding.
 Her photo not mine, I dont take pretty food photos

 Kiehls Original Musk Body Lotion-  I'm always on the hunt for lotion that will hydrate my skin but smells good without being too overpowering.  This lotion fulfills all the requirements.  I've always been a Kiehls fan and can't believe it took me so long to find this lotion.

 Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site- if you're looking for a good book for little boys I highly suggest this one.  This is Miller's current favorite book and we read it at least ten times a day.

 Old Navy Active Ruched Tank- this is my favorite workout shirt right now.  It's perfect for hiding the post-baby tummy and thanks to the stretchy sides it could easily be worn during pregnancy.

- Easter m&ms- I can't stop eating all the candy!! Thankfully it's almost all gone in our house and then as someone pointed out on instagram we don't have another candy holiday until Halloween so phew.   Anyone else always feel like they overindulge on a holiday?

- Miller went down for a nap yesterday with no screaming!! That's the first time that has happened in five weeks.  I'm hoping we're turning a corner with this sleep thing.

- Did I mention I'm supposed to leave for my trip in 2 weeks and I'm seriously terrified to leave my babies?!  I know I will have fun but I can't imagine being without them for 3 days.  Please tell me I'm not alone or crazy. 

Now it's your turn!
Grab the button and link up to Annie and Natalie  on your Thoughts for Thursday post.
Use #thoughtsforthursdays on Instagram and tag us @homeofmalones and @eastcoastnat.
Link up starts at 7am EST.
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Home of Malones and East Coast Chic

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