Countdown

Today marks 28 weeks of carrying this now little eggplant. Aloha, third trimester.

 

Wild how relatively quick this whole journey has been... sure there have been aches, pains, vomiting, bloating, nausea but also lovely kicks, punches, funny belly movement and glorious beating heart sounds.   

 

Any momma tips, tricks for the third trimester? Let's do this.

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New Year, New Journey

Well, it's 2016! 2015 was a year of growth, travels and a big announcement... hello, preggers! I know 2016 will be the biggest journey yet.  

 

While I'm not a faithful journal writer (how I often wish I can write weekly of life happenings), I'm thankful for social media that often triggers great memories - hooray for Timehop! However, I do like to record my yearly travels... below are my 2015 destinations. Cheers to a great year ahead for all of you and making beautiful, happy memories. 

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Nailed It

I'm a brand loyal nail product gal. 90 percent of the time I do my own nails as, frankly, I'm quite particular and with my limited art skills and proper tools, they look great. And I've learned what I like over the years. But above all, my nail time/process is a big relaxation and decompressor. But enough about me. 

 

I made an impromptu Sephora polish purchase of Dior  Autumn/Winter 2015 gel shine and long wear nail lacquer in Cosmopolite (photos below).

 

A seemingly plum/maroon color, it still sits nicely alongside the classic holiday reds. The application itself was a surprise as the brush is slightly curved/fanned out, making those outside corners reachable in one painting motion. The texture is indeed very gel like and sits that way immediately after even one coat. 

 

Net, this purchase was a win. I see a few more bottles of Dior in my future. 

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Glowing and Growing

A new little sparkle is entering our lives come April 2016. And I don't think I can hide my growing belly much longer, so here it is world... I'm pregnant! 

 

It's been so rewarding sharing the news with family and friends over the past few weeks. I guess once the news hits social media, then it must feel really real, right?!  

 

I'm nearly 18 weeks and can't complain too much. I had some struggles with nausea for the majority of my first trimester, but was grateful to take prescribed Diclegis which quickly did the trick. And my, how good that bread and pasta tasted as I couldn't quite stomach meats and much else. Now, there's consistent heartburn bouts and some nasty headaches, but I can't really complain. 

 

I'm excited to share my journey here as well as connect with other soon-to-be-mamas and rockstar moms. I don't plan to overhaul this blog into a mommy blog, but you betcha I'll be sharing cool finds and general updates on this time. 

 

Oh, and hope you like this sketch by yours truly of our little arrival announcement.  

 

 

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Twinkle toes, will travel.

On this #TravelTuesday, I don't sparkle discriminate when it comes to feet.

Granted, unorganized, chintzy sparkles in glue-seeping pods and ill-anchored embellishments I'll respectfully decline, but when perfect accents come along AND pair with function... well, yes please.  

Enter these loafer beauties. A metallic cap-toe with anchored crystals and a rubber sole, this pair is a travel must.

But I won't stop with these, would love to hear your MUST travel kicks. What are your favorite, comfy, travel-worthy picks? 

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Miu Miu Embellished Cap-Toe Linen Loafer Corda 

Miu Miu Embellished Cap-Toe Linen Loafer Corda 

A Decade of Love

This post is dedicated to all the perfection from my cousin's incredible wedding. Words cannot adequately describe the weekend as we watched my cousin marry her best friend - a love story ten years in the making.  

The Standard Club downtown Chicago was bursting with emotion, love and beauty and never looked better. It was magnificent and brilliant - the talented team (credits below) poured into every detail to make her dreams come true. 

Check out some of the incredible decor by HMR Designs.  

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Summer Slowness

Hi friends... my it's been awhile since I posted (ugh!) and oh my do I have much to catch up on here. Weddings, birthdays and more. But, for today, wanted to share some colorful pics snapped (iPhone only) for weekend inspiration. 

 

Check back soon soon for more updates. Happy Friday, and hope you like.

 

 

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A Mother's Day Success

This Mother's Day, my husband and I had both sets of parents over along with a surprise visit from one of my sisters. The husband and I curated a 'paleo-forward' brunch menu so our family could experience what we often eat. Behold our menu below (courtesy of Nom Nom Paleo cookbook) as well as a few photos of our spread! 

 

-Bacon aioli-topped deviled eggs (all paleo filling)

-Pistachio apple endive salad (w/ paleo honey mustard dressing)

-Chinese egg foo young w/ chicken, spinach (egg patty)

-Spicy tuna cakes (made with sweet potatoes as binding agent) 

-Cinnamon apple scones (w/ almond flour and honey) 

-Greek yogurt with vanilla granola, chia seeds, fresh fruit (non-paleo) 

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Manolo Matrimony

One of my favorite wedding shoes is the Manolo Blahnik "Swan" pump. Disclaimer: they are not yet in my closet. From my stance, this is an updated answer to the famed "Carrie" SATC shoe - but with an increased embellished whimsical, swirling vine appliqué feel. 

 

I completed a sketch this week of this beauty in magenta. Hope you like it! What's your favorite wedding shoe?  

Manolo Blahnik Swan Satin Pump

Manolo Blahnik Swan Satin Pump

Happiest Place on Earth

Over this past holiday season, my husband and I visited Walt Disney World in Orlando. We had both gone as children a few times with our families, still hold those happy memories, and wanted to share this magical experience together. With no kids in tow, we explored the parks, venturing to whichever rides caught our eye and savored some fantastic bites throughout our wandering.

While our master plan was cut short due to my other half's back pains as well as a brief bout of the flu (PSA to little AND big humans: cover your mouth, please), please see some highlights, top picks from our travels below.

When in Rome...
When in Rome...
A majestic sphere. 

A majestic sphere. 

Incredible meal at Jiko at Animal Kingdom. 

Incredible meal at Jiko at Animal Kingdom. 

A glowing, humble abode. 

A glowing, humble abode. 

Yes, that's my very own glass slipper accompanying dessert at California Grill! My hubby made me cry with this sweet surprise. 

Yes, that's my very own glass slipper accompanying dessert at California Grill! My hubby made me cry with this sweet surprise. 

Breathtaking views of all the magic atop California Grill at the Contemporary resort. 

Breathtaking views of all the magic atop California Grill at the Contemporary resort. 

I bid you adieu... until we meet again.

I bid you adieu... until we meet again.

Grammy Love

I've learned that one of my "happy places" is sitting down with a glass of wine, enjoying a scented candle, lounging in sweatpants and drawing. I've always loved crafts, creating and art, and am trying to push myself to infuse it more in my present life.

 

Of late, I've loved watching award shows, seeing the haute looks, custom gowns and enchanting ensembles grace the red carpet and stage and sketching my favorites. 

 

This was no different with the Grammys last weekend. Like her or hate her, Taylor Swift stunned on the red carpet with a teal Elie Saab number. Let me know what you think! 

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Gratitude

Tis the time of year for reflection, for appreciation of the hours spent with family and friends and this day is no different. As I sit along a warm beach, with salty air grazing through my hair, I am thankful. 

 

Thankful for for another year of health, safe travels, a love whom I don't like to be a day without, dedicated parents, authentic siblings, a warm home, the freedom to travel and explore, an innate passion to continually create and uncover beauty, a job with upcoming challenges and friends whom are dear.  

 

While this may be negative, I am realistic that this wholeness may change, that sickness may approach, that life's bumps may elevate and this moment a year, two, ten from now may feel different or even sad.  

 

For now, I am grateful.  

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A Travel Tote

For an upcoming trip out of the country and then to Disney World (yes, I'm under the age of 40 and do not have children), I searched for the perfect light, non-bulky hands free purse to fit my explorer needs. I briefly thought of a style-forward fanny pack which my husband quickly dismissed. So when this little number entered my life, he was much relieved.

 

This Loeffler Randall fold clutch purse with a removable strap was the perfect fit. The natural and dark leather with lizard dot printed leather and a snap closure made for a fashionable, yet functional accessory. Excited to take it on my explorations of beach towns and rendezvous with princesses. 

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World's Best Wedding Video

Wedding videos should capture the celebration highlights and the story of the treasured love. Now, I may be biased as this couple are dear friends of ours, but this is HANDS DOWN the best wedding video I've ever seen. (Yes, it's better than my own.) The composition is impeccable, the shots artistic, the music is perfectly paired with the content, and truly embodies the emotion felt throughout this southern wedding weekend. And it didn't hurt that the Charleston-based crew were a pleasure to be around. Please enjoy.