10.27.2016

Thoughts for Thursday: Savoring these Toddler Days

One thing I'm really trying to work harder on is savoring these toddlers days.  It's tough. Toddlers are tough. Many days I find myself counting down the hours to bedtime before anyone has eaten lunch because I'm exhausted. They drain me physically and emotionally everyday but I try to remind myself that one day soon they won't want me to snuggle them while we watch Thomas the train, or give them one more big gigantic hug before bedtime.

I walked into Miller's room last night while he was sleeping and all I could think was who is that little boy and where did my baby go?!! How was it only 3 years ago that I was snuggling my little 4 month old who wouldn't sleep through the night unless I was holding him but was so happy and always gave the best little smiles and laughs when I sang One Direction songs too him.  How is he this talkative little boy who tells me about his friends at school, can count to 15, and can sign songs I never even knew he knew.

Don't even get me started on Matthew.  This time last year I had an 11 month old infant and in one week I will have a two year old!  I can't even believe how fast this year has gone by and how much of Matthew's personality has shone through these last six months.  He's my secret wild one.  He's quiet, loving, and snuggly but you will find him on top of a table or climbing a tree in the 30 seconds you turn around.  This kid has given me more almost heart attacks in the past year than Miller ever did at this age.

The days are long but the years are short.  

That quote has never been more true for me lately.   There are so many things I want to remember that each of them do but find myself falling asleep at the end of the day forgetting to write it all down. My goal for the rest of the year with the frantic pace of the holidays is to really take the time to slow down and enjoy these days as much as I can.  Try to remind myself that in a few years I might not have two people who need me so much and while I will enjoy the freedom I'm probably going to miss it a lot too.  Everyone tells you to enjoy each phase of parenthood but it's tough when you're in the thick of it.  It's tough not to feel like the days are never ending.



















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10.25.2016

A Few of My Favorite Things: October Edition

Hi Friends! With only 6 days left in October I decided to round up some of my favorites from this past month.  Some of these are new and some of things are things I've loved for a while but are best in October.






1. Target Striped Canvas Bag-  I picked up this bag back in the spring to use as a carry on for flying but then changed my mind.  I remembered I had it this summer and it's been great to use for a day trip diaper bag.  It's big enough to fit all the stuff I need for both boys but can easily be worn as a cross body and the slouchy canvas means it lays well and moves easily if you're moving around a lot.  The $30 price tags means I don't mine if it gets dirty when I'm with the kids.

2. Toms Del Rey Sneaker-  I am so glad I got these sneakers.  I've worn them almost every day this month and still love them.  They've so comfy, with more support than regular Toms and I've had at least 10 people ask me about them. I highly recommend them as casual run around shoe.

3. BareMinerals The Natural High Blush- Love love love this new blush!  It gives me the perfect natural hint of color on my cheeks without being too much. Goes on nice and smooth and blends well.

4. Smashbox Full Exposure Mascara- I've been pretty loyal to Maybelline mascara for years now but every once in awhile I need to try something new.  I'm pretty picky about the mascara brush and I hate mascara that goes on too thick.  So far this mascara has been great.  It gives my short blond lashes enough length and volume that I don't feel like I need to use a lengthening and volumizing mascara together (which is what I usually do).  I'll keep you posted the longer I have it.

5. Old Navy Toddler Desert Boots-  I really wanted boots for my boys this fall that didn't break the bank since it seems like every time I buy them new shoes they have a growth spurt and need a new pair one month later.  These are so adorable and it seems the boys like them too, at least Miller says they're so comfy and he thinks they look just like Daddy's shoes which he loves.

6. Cat & Jack Skinny Chino Pants-  I know I've mentioned it here before but I really struggle finding pants that fit Miller since he's so tall and skinny.  A friend of mine suggested these to me and they've been a life saver.  Miller has to have pants he can put on and take off himself for the potty at preschool and a lot of the stretchy waist ones are just too big for his skinny frame.  If you have a tall skinny toddler I highly suggest these.

7. Thin Mints-  I mean who doesn't love girl scout cookies.  This time of year always gets me and since I'm trying to be good I've been treating myself to two cookies every night, but in reality I just want to sit down and finish the whole box in one sitting ;)

8. Coffeemate Pumpkin Spice Creamer-  If you've been a reader for awhile you know this creamer is my weakness in the fall.  As I said above I've been trying to be good so I only let myself use it 2-3x per week.  I've also been using it to try and curb my bi-weekly Starbucks trips that are not good for my waistline or bank account.


What are some of your favorites this month?  


10.20.2016

Thoughts for Thursday: Life Lately

Hi Friends!!  Life has been so crazy lately and I miss catching up with you all!  I'm really hoping once I get through the next two weeks it will slow down and I can really get back to this space!  Thank you as always for stopping by and linking up with me and Annie!  Remember you can write about whatever you want and link up below.

- We sat down with our builder a few weeks ago and found out that our renovations are going to take approximately 4 months! We were thinking 10ish weeks and had planned to live with my parents during that time.  Four months is way to long for us to live with them, we would all go crazy!  Plus knowing how these things work it will probably be more like five months.  In a crazy stroke of luck our rental townhouse that we own (formerly our old house that we bought in 2008 if you've been reading this blog awhile) is up for rent so we decided to move back in there during the renovation. I'm a little nervous to go from 3000sq ft to 1100sq ft but I know we can do it.  We are planning to bring the bare minimum with us to the townhouse in hopes of simplifying things if we can. We move next Friday!! So I'm in a bit of crunch mode trying to get organized, purge, and finish packing!

- I took the kids to the DC National Zoo this week with my Dad and sister.  I had planned for a crisp fall day but instead we got 85 degrees in October. Regardless we had a great time and Miller and Matthew loved seeing all the animals.   Miller is dinosaur obsessed and he was so mesmerized when he saw this triceratops at the zoo.  He said Hi and talked to it.  It was the sweetest thing ever.  I love the innocence of this age. Now we have to take him to the museum of Natural History so he can see more dinosaurs.






- My favorite tunic from last year is back in stock at Old Navy and today with 35% off it's only $11!

This is such a easy piece to throw on with leggings and boots in the winter.  


- We are in full Halloween mode over here and below are our current favorites. We read them all at least three times every night.

Would love to hear about more Halloween books you love for kids! 

- I might be a little absent from the blog over the next two weeks, but follow along on instagram, instastories, or snapchat for life updates and highlights! @eastcoastnat for all of them! 



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10.11.2016

Back to Fall Fashion Basics

After my no shop August and my little cheat with the Lilly Pulitzer sale I really didn't do much shopping after that.  I sort of thought I would go crazy when September 1st hit but I didn't, in fact I hadn't bought anything until last week! Now that the temperatures are finally dropping here I realized that my fall wardrobe is majorly lacking and needs a little pick me up.  See this time last year I had a 10 month old and 10lbs to lose (the whole I can't believe I had an infant last year and now almost have a 2 yr old makes me want to sob, whyyyy does it go so fast).  So I need some new things in my closet, badly.

I came up with a sort of outfit system to hopefully keep me looking cute while running around with the kids but not too over the top try hard stay at home mom.  I definitely have a momiform and I'm trying to keep it basic this year.  As much as I love trends I tend more toward easy classic looks.

Here is what I usually wear:  Jeans or leggings with a knit top.  Then I pair it with an oversized sweater, scarf, necklace, or vest.  For shoes I tend toward an easy flat, Toms, or a cute tennis shoe.
Does everyone else's #basic outfit sound like this?

Knit Tops


I loved the sleeveless version of this over the summer and the long sleeve is just as good! It is fitted but has the perfect amount of stretch to make it comfortable. 

I can never turn down a striped shirt and these Factory ones are my favorite every year! I loved the green and navy on this one so I had to have it.  

I just discovered these this year and I'm obsessed!! These are seriously the best and I was able to snag them on sale at Gap for $13!! I got one in every color. It's the perfect long sleeve knit and it's got a long torso for us tall girls. It has the right amount of stretch to and is thick enough that it lays nicely.  It also washes and dries perfectly.  If you're in the market for a basic tee this fall and winter this is it.  


Love love love these baggier tees for layering under sweaters and wraps.  These were such a staple for me this summer and I'm so happy I can wear them into the winter.  

Jeans & Leggings: 

An easy basic black legging that you can dress up or down.  I love how thick they are so you don't feel like you're just wearing yoga pants.  

You all should know my love for these by now. They're the best leggings, can't beat them and the high waist is so flattering.  Get a pair if you don't have any yet.


These are still my favorite jeans after two years! So flattering and comfortable and they don't stretch out too fast like a lot of jeans do.  

These $59 jeans are my new current favorites!! After so many good reviews I was finally convinced to try them and I'm so happy I did.  Super flattering and very comfortable! Plus they are under $100 which is such a win for me as far as jeans go.  They do run big so make sure to size down.  


Sweaters, Wraps, and Vests: 


I love these BP oversized wrap sweaters.  They're warm, cozy, and the price is always right, not too cheap but not crazy expensive either.  

This wrap gives me all sorts of heart eye emojis.  It's so soft and cozy that it makes me just want to stay in my yoga pants all day ;) It's a splurge but totally worth it in my opinion.  

This sweater vest is a fun closet addition this fall and it's only $19 which makes it easy to pick up. Layered with a black or gray long sleeve tee and some booties would be adorable.  


Another fun vest sweater vest to layer with a long sleeve tee or blouse.  I love the cream color but the black is just as good too.  

Last but certainly not least my forever favorite J.Crew Excursion Vest! I've had this vest in different colors and patterns for years.  It truly is one of the most flattering, comfy vests out there.  If you don't want to splurge for this one Factory makes one that is just as good for half the price!



Shoes: 

Just got these booties and I'm so happy I finally did.  I was looking for an everyday bootie with a low heel that I could run around town in with the kids and these are perfect.  



These were sold out in my size but just came back in stock at Nordstrom so I'm going to give them a try!  They look like another cute casual shoe that's easy to slip on, which is the name of the game these days.  

I've had my eye on these Vince slip on shoes for the past month but couldn't get myself to splurge on them even though they're so cute, then searching Zappos last week I found these below and hit order! 


These are more than half the price of the Vince ones and the reviews are just as good.  I'm hoping they're as cute in person as they are online because I'm obsessed with them.  


I'm a Toms lover through and through so when I saw these sneakers this fall I knew I had to have them.  They're cute and more importantly super comfortable! They feel like a more comfy heavier version that the classic Toms.  



Accessories: 

A plaid scarf, I mean can one ever have too many.  This was my first purchase this fall and I love the colors of it and I love that it's different from the blanket scarves I've been wearing in years past.  

I love  statement necklaces to pair with tees any time of year to dress up an outfit.  Right now with small kids statement necklaces work out much better than long necklaces and this BB one above and the J.Crew Factory one below are two favorites.  




Part of my momiform always includes a large tote bag for the 1000 things I need to carry for myself and the kids.  I was big bag girl before kids and I'm even worse now that I carry stuff for three people. The bigger the better in my opinion!! The Le pliage and St. Anne tote are two of my favorites that are classics you can carry any time of year.  





Do you have a basic fall uniform?  Any staple pieces that you love that would be a good addition to my closet?


10.06.2016

Thoughts for Thursday: Kitchen Renovation Update

Hi everyone I'm back!  I never meant to be gone so long but it really was nice to step away for awhile and take a break.   Life has been moving a break neck speed these days and truly can't believe it's October! Matthew will be two in only one month, we start our first floor renovation on November 1st, and Christmas is a little over 11 weeks away (insert a whole bunch of emojis here).

After months of back and forth with the builder, kitchen designer, and interior designer I finally have renovation updates to share!  If you're new here we are currently working with a design build firm for a first floor renovation which involves a complete kitchen gut and overhaul,  making our sun room (3 season room) an official part of the house that can be used all year, new flooring throughout the whole first floor, stairs, and upstairs hallway.  New doors, baseboards, trim, moulding, wainscoting throughout first floor.

Our current kitchen details can be found in this post here.   Our plan is to rip out the wall between the kitchen and dining room to create a more open concept feel to the house.  Then we're going to rip down the wall where the coats are below and turn that into cabinets.  Behind that is my current laundry room which will be moved the basement and that will be turned into a mudroom.  





This wall of cabinets will become our pantry and mini bar area with our wine fridge and coffee station.


This wall next to the kitchen entrance has these very narrow thin cabinets that pretty much serve no purpose and we can't keep them if we want seating at the island so we're ripping these out and replacing with decorative wainscoting.


Here is our finalized kitchen layout. These are not the best pictures as I had to take them with my phone at the designers office but you get the idea!

 The sink is staying in it's current location below the window and the cabinets and appliances will flank it on each side extending from the bay window in our eat in kitchen to the bay window in our dining room.  We will have a 42in refrigerator on the far left and wall ovens on the far right.  Each upper cabinet will be a 36in cabinet and on the lower to the left will be our dishwasher and to the right will be the pull out trash and recycling.   We are going to panel the refrigerator and dishwasher since they will be on our main focal wall.  

The island will be 10 feet long and will hold our cooktop.  We decided to go with a 36in induction cooktop. We have still not made the final decision on the island side where the stools will go but we don't think it will be corbels we think we'll do more of a solid base like this.



The drawing below is the other side of the kitchen and where our current coat rack is and door to the laundry room.
The door to the laundry room is getting moved to the other side of the wall and the wall is getting torn down for our pantry and bar area cabinets.   We plan to put our wine fridge here and use glass cabinets on the top for wine glasses and coffee mugs.

As I mentioned we are ripping out the thin cabinets and putting decorative wainscoting up.  We will have two furniture like pantries on that wall that will flank either side of the island to make a more cohesive kitchen look. It can be hard to explain on paper but the examples shown at our designers office make a lot of sense.  


We are going with white shaker style cabinets on our main cabinets and still deciding what color island we want.  We just can't decide between navy or gray. I want navy but Kyle thinks it's too trendy and is leaning toward a gray.

Next week I will be back with appliance, hardware, and flooring updates!


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