Friday, February 27, 2015


Let's get right to it, shall we?
Here's what made me feel all twitterpated, smile contagiously, giggle uncontrollably, etc.

  • Cece Metallic Ballet Flats // For obvious reasons, I adored these flats even before I had Max. However, today, with a baby in tow, I love them more than ever because they instantly add a shiny element and complete any regular mom-semble.
  • Serena & Lily New Arrivals // Last week, the latest S&L catalog showed up in my mailbox, and I found myself drooling over EVERY stinking page. I loved seeing the work of Erin Flett featured throughout the catalog. Among all the fabulosity, I couldn't help but love this "Sun" print and this pleated pendant. They are seriously swoon worthy!
  • Kate Spade for Kids // Okay, so I knew about the Gap collaboration this past Winter, but I had no idea that there's an actual "Kids" category on the KSNY website. For as much as I stalk the online selection, I'm slightly embarrassed it's taken me so long to see this. And can we just take a moment and discuss all that's precious about this pink jacket?
  • While we're talking about Kate Spade, I should probably note how much I adore the Lily Avenue Kiki (cobalt + scallops).
  • Goodlife Key Tags // Digging through your tote can be a real hassle. Set yourself up for success and a little cheer with this adorable Hello Sunshine keychain? P.S. Is Lent over yet? Just kidding.
  • Caramel & Cheddar Boom Chicka Pop // Oh no they didn't! Oh yes, they DID! Now how am I going to get my hands on a bag? This could be really dangerous. Lady Google tells me it's available on Amazon (of course!). Do you think I could justify this as one of those necessary pantry purchases? I'm thinking it's more sustenance and less Treat Yo Self.
  • While I drool and dream about the crazy delicious mix mentioned above, I can't help but get a little bit excited about getting a gel manicure this weekend. It's been far too long, my friends. I sure hope my nail lady is prepared for this Chatty Cathy (that's me!) come Saturday and her predictable, yet classic, color of choice. Oh hey, Clambake!
  • Buckle up, color lovers! This palette from J.Crew's Behind the Design: Garment-Dyed Tees feature will make you wildly giddy. Also, is that a little Rothko I see just peeking out from the side? Mr. Muytjens, say it ain't so.
  • Along with some weekend pampering, I plan on list-making with gusto. A special thanks goes out to my trusty notepad
  • And in honor of Ron Swanson and the series finale of Parks and Recreation (hold me), maybe Flyboy and I should consider dusting off the ol' smoker? This Pitt Cue Co. cookbook might be just the right place to start.

And now, the moment we've all been waiting for...
(insert drumroll here)
You're the winner of the Hattan Home GiveawayPlease email me to claim your prize. 

As always, thank you kindly for stopping by. Cheers to a snazzy weekend, m' dears! Make it count.

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Thursday, February 26, 2015



FEELING: It's no secret I'm a pretty reserved gal. Some might even say I'm tightly wound. Ha! While I tend to approach each day with a certain amount of structure and intensity, there are a few things that really bring out the silly and playful in me (gin and a J.Crew style guide, to name a few). I suppose it's a side that I tend to protect and share with only my dearest family and friends—oh, how thoughtful! I'm not entirely sure why I feel the need to carry on like this, but I've realized that life with Max has made me a bit more uninhibited and I like it. Everyone tells you that having a baby will change you, and they're right. You can't really prepare yourself for the ways in which you'll personally evolve, but in just four short months, I can already tell I'm a better individual because of him. 

THANKFUL FOR: We plan to visit my parents for two weeks in March. Woo Hoo! As we get closer to our trip, I grow more and more excited. A change of scenery and quality time with family is much-needed right about now. I originally planned to make this journey while Flyboy was at training in January, but Beesly's surgery and recuperation put a hold on any traveling. At the time I was pretty bummed that our visit to see my parents was delayed, but I'm really excited that we get to go to D.C. as a family.

THINKING ABOUT: I typically give up soda and chocolate for Lent, but on Fat Tuesday I got a text from my mom that said she was giving up online shopping this year. Oh, the horror! In an act of support, I agreed to join her. With the exception of Amazon staples (toiletries, baby gear we can't get in Swell Rio, dog treats, etc.), there will be no "Treat Yo Self" purchases this Lenten Season. With a week under my belt, I watch the UPS truck drive by each afternoon and I can't help but wonder if my favorite delivery man misses me. I didn't really have much time to plan for this, and I'd like to tell him "It's not you, it's me." He has to notice that he never stops by our house anymore. I wonder if he misses the frequent deliveries and my frantic attempts to meet him at the door while Beesly barks.

EATING: In the last week I've tried a handful of new recipes, but there were two that really deserved an honorable mention on m' blog. If you're looking for ways to mix up your weekly meal plan, consider making this Shrimp, Avocado, and Roasted Corn Salad via Gimme Some Oven or these Parsnip and Garlic Chive Home Fries via HeartBeet Kitchen.

LISTENING TO: Shh! Do you hear that? It's the whirring sound of Max's swing, which is back in working order. Sweet freedom!

WATCHING: The Texas weather continues to fluctuate (80 degrees one day and 35 degrees the next), so Max has been a little bit congested. In an attempt to clear some of the mucus from his nose, I whipped out the old NoseFrida. Have you heard of this thing? The snotsucker features a tube that's placed against the baby's nostrils. Parents are able to use their own suction and draw mucus from their baby's nose. So bizarre and intriguing all at once. I'd heard rave reviews about this snazzy Swedish-designed aspirator, but I'd yet to try it. So, on Monday evening, Flyboy sat and watched as I 
attempted to use this crazy device on Max. After I got over the initial giggling and Max stopped trying to put it in his mouth, I was impressed by how well it worked! I can't help but wonder how effective the Windi Gas and Colic Reliever would be. Then again, I'm not sure I'm adventurous enough to give it a shot.

READING: Aww, shucks! No time for books and glossies this week (#thatmomlife), so how about a few links I really loved?

Embracing Selfishness, For Now via Design for Mankind — Oh, I needed to read these words.
How To Look Like A J.Crew Model via A Cup of Jo — Caroline is living THE dream.
Sketchy via Making it Lovely — A seriously adorable post!
10 Tips For Staying Motivated via Sequins & Stripes
Jenna's Picks via The J.Crew Blog — Of course we're bag and breakfast besties!
Stacked and Styled via Dear Lovely — I believe it's an art form.

LOVING: After last week's appointment with the pediatrician, we were encouraged to start introducing veggies and fruit into Max's diet in the event he showed an interest. We dabbled with a little rice cereal on Sunday, and he had a blast. Naturally, this meant it was time to arm ourselves with a high chair (we got this one) and a Baby Brezza Food Maker. I'm not going to lie, I'm pretty jazzed to finally make some healthy and homemade food for the bebe. I think I could have some fun with this!

Enough about me. How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!!

P.S. Don't forget to enter the Hattan Home Giveaway. A lucky winner will be announced in tomorrow's Love List!

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Wednesday, February 25, 2015


Most people dust off their juicer whenever they're in need of a good cleanse. I, on the other hand, need a refreshing cocktail as a good excuse to pull ours out from the cupboard. Potato, potahto. This past Sunday, in the name of blog research, I whipped up another gin concoction, and I'm here to tell you it's a keeper! Go on and bid adieu those winter blues with something tasty.

Recipe from Naturally Ella
(Serves 2)

2 Ripe Pears
1 Green Apple
2.5 oz Gin
1 Tbsp Honey
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
Club Soda
Rosemary Sprigs

  1. Remove cores and seeds from pears and apple.
  2. Run through juicer and add lemon juice immediately.
  3. Shake juice with gin and honey.
  4. Pour over ice.
  5. If desired, add a splash of club soda and garnish with a sprig of rosemary.
P.S. Don't forget to enter the Hattan Home Giveaway. A winner will be announced in this Friday's Love List.
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Tuesday, February 24, 2015



Yesterday I had a dental appointment (no cavities—that NEVER happens, you guys!), and my dentist kindly asked, "So what's changed since I saw you last August?" I smiled and took a deep breath. Besides the fact that I'm no longer toting around an extra 35 pounds, I spared her the nitty-gritty details and kept my response brief. While I realize she was probably just talking about my teeth, I couldn't help but replay the past six months in my mind as she poked around my pearly whites. I hate going to the dentist—I always have—but today's appointment away from Max suddenly felt like a treat. Oh. Em. Gee. A lot REALLY has changed. In fact, I can't even believe I'm typing that, but it's the sort of freedom you forget about when you become a mom. Suddenly a routine dental appointment, which you previously detested, is now a relaxing outing. Who am I? No, seriously?! It was only when I reached into my purse to grab my keys on the way out of the clinic that I remembered "Oh hey, you're a mom now!" I suppose the random set of baby moccasins and toys floating around my tote were colorful reminders that Max was waiting for me at home. Of course I was eager to return to the little guy, but I definitely didn't hesitate to swing by Starbucks on the way home to prolong my special outing sans baby.

I hope your week is off to an incredible start!
P.S. Don't forget about the Hattan Home Giveaway. A lucky winner will be announced this Friday!
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Monday, February 23, 2015


This Monday calls for a colorful twist! How about a Hattan Home Giveaway?! One lucky reader will win a $50 shopping spree to one of my favorite online boutiques. Yippee! Lindsay's shop is chock-full of delightful treats (think Kate Spade,, Jonathan Adler, and more) that I just know you'll adore. The winner will be announced in this Friday's Love List. Good luck, and go get 'em tiger!

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015



Happy Hump Day, peeps! I originally said I'd pop in on Tuesday, but I lied. Oops! Now it's Wednesday, and I'm here to tell you that I'm taking the rest of the week off. Boo. Hiss. What a giant flake! A lot has happened since I signed off last week. Where do I even begin?

In honor of Flyboy's return, Max decided to cut his first tooth—because nothing says WELCOME HOME like Tylenol and teething rags. Woop woop! Oh, and on Friday our Mamaroo swing bit the dust (an engineering issue) and I'm waiting on 4moms to send a new base. I've been told the replacement part is on the way, and I might just kiss the UPS man when it finally arrives at our doorstep. It's essentially the only way I'm able to get anything done around here, so I'm going a little bit nuts without it. In the mean time, Max and I will just keep singing and dancing to Sting's Message in a Bottle. "I'll send an SOS to the world. I hope that someone gets my, I hope that someone gets my..." You catch my drift. Then, on Tuesday we took the bebe to his four-month check up and there were more shots—not the celebratory tequila kind, although I really think I'd be down for that about now. A little bit of prodding paired with Max's new chompers, and it's clear that life around here has been more eventful than normal.

While the past few days have called for some readjusting and troubleshooting (that's parenthood, right?!), I figured I'd take it as life's cue to slow down a bit and deviate from my trusty routine. What worked for five weeks in Flyboy's absence might not be exactly what I need right now. I guess I thought if I kept busy the time apart would go quickly, and thankfully it did. These days, however, it might be nice for a change of pace. I'd like to make time for the occasional family lunch date, or finally tend to emails from dear friends that have been hanging out in my inbox for weeks. This is a great opportunity to hit reboot and reassess my priorities.

Before Max arrived, I wondered if I would be able to make time for some of my favorite things (a clean house, a to-do list, blogging, spinning, etc.). Ever the control freak, I've been able to prove to myself that I can indeed pull all of that stuff off, but it doesn't always mean that I HAVE to or that I NEED to. Right now I think it's best I focus less on an orderly house, and more on the people that make my life so dear. Snuggles with snaggletooth and a few hours parked on the couch with Flyboy sound nice right about now.

Oh well, enough rambling for now... I'll be back next Monday with a snazzy little giveaway. Stay tuned, m' dears!
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Friday, February 13, 2015


Let's get right to it, shall we?
Here's what made me feel all twitterpated, smile contagiously, giggle uncontrollably, etc.

  • Dress Your Tech // How fabulous are these hot pink polka dots created by Georgiana Paraschiv for Designlovefest?
  • Cuckoo for Juju // Ever since my parents got me a Juju for my birthday, I'm more obsessed than ever. It just makes me so happy to stare at the fluffy feathered headdress. If I made all the rules, I'd say that every room should have one.
  • Castle and Things // From time to time it's fun to peruse Rachel Castle's latest work to see what the color lovin' creative has been up to. I can't help but fall hard for the felt cutouts. I love 20 Spot Ambre and A Big Letter like X O.
  • Martie Pant // I'm guessing Martie is related to J.Crew's Minnie. While the name makes me think of Back to the Future, I'm a fan of the higher waist and cropped length. Minnie and I were never besties (German peasant stock, i.e. big calves),  but I'd be willing to mingle with Martie. Can you tell from last week's post I can't stop thinking about that blue hue?
  • Heart One-Piece // This is just so precious. I wish Max could pull it off, but it doesn't appear to be gender neutral. Ha Ha! Paired with his striped leggings, it might be too much for the confused cowboys around here to handle.
  • Gem Tassel Necklace // Wednesday was a rough one, my friends. I may have had a "Treat Yo Self" moment and pulled the trigger on this piece. Hey, my mom persuaded me to do it and we all know that mother knows best...
  • Live Colorfully Perfume // I ran out of my go-to perfume and I think this might be a nice replacement for Spring. Do you have any favorites I should consider? I've also heard nothing but great things about Jo Malone perfume. Oh, decisions.
  • Bond d' Orsay Pumps // I'm a ballet flat girl through and through, but there's something about this sleek silhouette and punchy color that make these seriously swoon worthy. And of course they come with a price tag to match its height.
  • Neon Yellow and Arrows Bracelet // Drooling over Coralie Reiter's gorgeous handmade jewelry. Check out her shop here!
  • Love Birds Slim Bee // A Love List with Valentine's Day around the corner calls for something that just screams amour.

Cheers to a snazzy weekend, m' dears! Make it count.

P.S. I'll be back with a post next Wednesday. I'm going to take a few days off to spend some time with the fam.
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Thursday, February 12, 2015


FEELING: The sunny weather has been perfect for afternoon walks with Max; however, I can't help but feel guilty the instant I lace up my sneakers. As pathetic as it sounds, walks are one of the few times I don tennies, and Beesly is fully aware of this. In fact, she sees it as her cue to prance around the house with excitement as though she gets to join in on the fun. Ugh! No amount of dog treats can compensate for the letdown she experiences when she realizes that she and Tripp will be left behind. Thankfully, Queen Bee is supposed to go to San Antonio in the coming weeks for her follow-up appointment and we should get the green light to resume our walks. The Best Friends Committee will be back in session, and I know one Berner who's going to be thrilled!

THANKFUL FOR: I underestimated my love for Benefit's Eye Bright Pencil until the tip of mine broke off this week. Womp womp! I've had this magical makeup stick for a year or so, and it had been sharpened so many times I'm not entirely sure it had many uses left. I suppose a little proper planning might have prevented me to have to go without, but it kind of slipped my mind. After the last chunk fell off, I convinced myself that I could go without. Was it really that great, or was I using it because I had it in my makeup bag? After two days without the pencil, I hopped on Sephora and ordered another. When used in conjunction with my trusty concealer, it's the one thing that doesn't make me look so exhausted. I have to give props to my sister because she originally turned me on to the product. Her lifestyle is way different from mine these days, but I can assure you it's a necessity for night owls and new moms. 

Last year on Valentine's Day, I took a pregnancy test and life changed forever. I'll never forget that day, even though part of me would like to. You see, I spent the next nine months so anxious and afraid of the unknown, rarely allowing myself to truly embrace the adventure ahead. Honestly, it's one trait I despise about my personality. I can't help but wish I was wired to be a little more carefree and a little less intense. Knowing what I do now, I'm still not sure what I would tell that worrisome girl of my past because I know she would never fully believe that life with Max could be this good, or that she could love someone SO much. With that being said, I would definitely leave out the whole colic detail. Nothing can prepare you for a roller coaster like that. Ha Ha!

EATING: Salmon and roasted veggies, all day erryday. Are you tired of my bland and boring responses yet? Don't worry. Next week's grocery list is already looking a lot more fun since Flyboy's coming home. I'm pretty pumped to have a reason to cook again. Yahoo!

LISTENING TO: I really hoped snarky comments from strangers would end after my pregnancy, but it appears I continue to attract asshats. I know what you're thinking, hashtag blessed. In the last week alone I've had random people ask me the following questions: 

"Well if your baby has colic, have you tried anything to fix it?" — Ha! Where do I start?
"Is your son fat because you feed him formula?" — Excuse me?

Lucky for these individuals, my parents raised me to be kind and cordial, but that doesn't mean part of me doesn't wish I could respond with a smart-mouth retort. In my mind I was all Stephanie Tanner, "How rude!", but in real life I was all forced smiles and patient replies. Seriously though, who in their right mind thinks someone would enjoy listening to a screaming baby cry for hours on end? And we're talking about a baby here, not a contestant on The Biggest Loser. My goodness! It's probably a good thing I'm not quick on my feet, or ol' sassy pants might come out to play and that could get me in some serious T-R-O-U-B-L-E.

Note: I've been known to give local ranchers a free pass when they point to Max's striped leggings and ask if he's a girl (true story, it's happened twice). I can see how this might be cause for confusion when your wardrobe staples are camouflage and cowboy boots. I suppose classic patterns aren't really their thing.

WATCHING:  Thanks to one Maxwell Christopher Fine, thirty-minute sitcoms are m' jam these days. Hour-long shows can sometimes take days to finish (not kidding), so I need something that's short, sweet, and preferably funny. I started watching Marry Me when it premiered last fall and the quirky banter continues to crack me up. I was a Happy Endings superfan, so I was ecstatic to see Casey Wilson back on the telly. She'll always be Penny to me, and I secretly wish that Rom-Com Con was a thing and we could go together!

READING: After my parents came to visit in October, my dad has proceeded to tell everyone that Max is the lil' burglar that stole his heart. Precious, I know! On Monday afternoon, I checked the mail and found a Valentine addressed to the bebe from my father, Max's Gampy. I guess my mom picked up a card from Rifle Paper Co. with a heart bandit illustrated on the front. You guys, it doesn't get any cuter than this, and I can't stop reading my dad's words because they're so stinkin' adorable. Here's an excerpt:

"All units, be on the lookout (BOLO) for cute baby boy,
short and stocky, muscular build, Caucasian, age — 4 months, no tattoos.
Suspect last seen wearing a Mock (Yeah) Ing (Yeah) t-shirt 
with striped pants and no shoes in the vicinity of Del Rio, Texas.
Yes, you, our little man, are guilty as charged. You stole our hearts from the moment we met you."

LOVING: Of course I'm stoked to spend some quality time with Flyboy, but his homecoming also means I get to do odds and ends like wash The Rig (it's dirrrrrrty) and whip out the leaf blower. Sweet freeeeeeeeedom! I guess I didn't realize what little things I'd miss doing while he was away. Clearly I lead a ridiculously exciting life when I get tickled by tending to miscellaneous chores sans baby.

Enough about me. How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!!
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Wednesday, February 11, 2015


While scouting cocktail recipes for February, I really wanted to whip up something that had a punchy pop of pink or red. Because Valentine's Day, obvi. I initially pinned the recipe with the intent to make it over the summer, but then I remembered we live in Texas and experienced 80-degree weather this past weekend. Why wait to tickle the ol' tastebuds with something colorful and refreshing?

Recipe from Cookin' Canuck
(Serves 2)

10 oz Strawberries
1 Tbsp Agave Nectar
Ice Cubes
3 oz Gin
1/2 oz Fresh Lime Juice
Club Soda
Lime Wedges

  1. Place strawberries and agave nectar in blender. Puree until smooth.
  2. Using two Collins glasses, place a few ice cubes in each glass.
  3. Divide gin, strawberry puree and lime juice between two glasses. Stir mixture with spoon.
  4. Fill glasses to the brim with club soda. Stir again and garnish with lime wedges.
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Tuesday, February 10, 2015



This past Saturday I sat in the living room and thought, "You know, the last five weeks have really flown by." Then, in a moment of clarity, reality set in and I realized the ridiculousness of that statement. Ha! In all honesty, we had some pretty rough days and there were moments when I couldn't help but wonder how I was going to make it. Thankfully, with just a few days left before Flyboy's return, it's a lot easier to see the light at the end of the tunnel. And truthfully, that little snippet of optimism feels really nice right about now. Relief is on the way. That has such a nice ring to it, wouldn't you agree?! While my ego would like to tell myself that I could have gone longer, and the stubborn side of me knows it's possible, I find delight in knowing we don't have to for awhile. Having Max to myself has been oodles of fun and boosted my mama confidence, but it will be SO nice to reunite and relish sweet little moments as a family once more. And to be completely honest, my roots are looking atrocious. It's time to get this mousy grey mess fixed and stat. As soon as his papa arrives, I'll be handing the bebe over for some much-needed maintenance. Bye, Ashy!

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Friday, February 6, 2015


Let's get right to it, shall we?
Here's what made me feel all twitterpated, smile contagiously, giggle uncontrollably, etc.

  • Fat and the Moon Lip Paint // I probably spend an unhealthy amount of time poring over Mille's online shop. While I've got a bunch of different items on my virtual wish list, this highly-pigmented lip paint is beckoning. Okay, and I should probably come clean already. I just really adore the lovely packaging.
  • KSNY Spring 2015 Campaign // Have you seen Kate Spade's latest campaign featuring  Iris Apfel alongside Karlie Kloss? They're absolutely delightful! I plan to scour every magazine until I've collected each of the ads.
  • Cashmere V-Neck Boyfriend Sweater // Believe it or not, cashmere has wonderful wicking qualities. Ha Ha! I've found this to be true as a result of Max's frequent spit up. And if money were no object, I'd stock my closet with J.Crew's featherweight cashmere in a heartbeat. Their latest line up of colors is outstanding! Tidewater Blue, I'm looking at YOU.
  • Small Amorous Satchel // Every girl needs a chic sidekick; this bag ought to do the trick. Remember, leopard is a neutral.
  • DIY Fabric Valentine // No need to beat around the bush. Give it to 'em straight with this snazzy banner.
  • Fine Fellow iPhone 6 Case // By now you've probably heard the sad news. Kate Spade's Saturday is closing. Womp womp. Since I'm looking to upgrade my phone in the coming weeks, it might be smart to finally snag this cheeky case.
  • Clare Vivier Catchall // There's just something about that hot pink stripe that leaves me swooning EVERY stinking time. A fancy little monogram would only sweeten the deal. Wouldn't you agree?!
  • Blue Striped Vase // I love browsing Domino's shop because they have the cutest variety of objets. It's been a fun way to get lost on the Interwebs while learning about different online shops and brands. Actually, that can be kind of dangerous, but this is one of those instances in which I like to live on the wild side. #rebel
  • Love Rules Candle // The price of this candle is slightly ridiculous, but it might be sweet inspiration for you very own DIY.

Cheers to a snazzy weekend! As always, thanks for stopping by.
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Thursday, February 5, 2015


FEELING: If I had a dollar for every time the phrase "Well, damn." crosses my mind throughout the day, I'd have enough money to buy this West Elm console for the living room (swoon!). The words are simple, liberating, but also quite calming. For instance, Max erupts like a volcano just minutes before I'm ready to leave the house and spit up streams down the pant leg of my fuchsia chinos — well, damn. In the process of feeding the bebe and pups, I forget the pot of turkey chili I made is more than just simmering; it's burnt — well, damn. The UPS man drops by and Beesly begins to bark, now Max is awake from his nap — well, damn. You get the gist. I typically get my feathers ruffled when things don't go according to plan (Type-A(shley) alert), but I've learned with a baby this is the norm. Upon thinking or uttering the words, "Well, damn.", I've found that I'm able to accept what goes awry and just keep chugging along. And for those rare instances when things exceed my expectations and I'm left befuddled in the best way, I switch gears and opt for "Hot damn!" Try incorporating both phrases into your daily routine. I really think I'm on to something here.

THANKFUL FOR: I'm not sure how we could have possibly survived the first four months of Max without our Mamaroo seat. The kid loves it and spends a good chunk of his day in car ride or kangaroo mode. In the heat of a colicky fit, it's usually the only way to soothe him (baby straight jacket required). One afternoon last week, the swing started to make some weird sounds and I was afraid we used it too much and it was dying on me. Well, damn. I freaked and wondered how I could manage life without this little gem! Thankfully, with a little trouble shooting I realized an error on my part when switching from the upright/seated position to the recline position. Hot damn! It got me thinking about the baby gear we've acquired and what pieces have been invaluable. To anyone with a bun in the oven, this snazzy machine will be your best friend. Oh, and extra bonus points to 4moms for not creating an eyesore!

THINKING ABOUT: Last Friday, something terrible happened. I got a hole in the thigh area of my Matchstick jeans!!! Well, damn. This was especially awful because it's pretty much the only pair of denim I own that fits postpartum. I've had this particular pair for FOUR months. How could it be?! I was 
distraught and truly convinced the quality of J.Crew's denim has gone downhill, but I'll save that for another post. Sigh. In a state of desperation I pulled out the Rubbermaid containers filled with my old pants. I wanted to cry because I wasn't sure I was mentally prepared for this moment, but I suppose it was inevitable. Lo and behold, I was able to button my old jeans. Hot damn! I'll be honest, there's still A LOT of work that needs to be done because they look and feel a tad bit snug, but it's nice to have some options again. I felt good about the progress I've made thus far, so I was curious to try on my old shorts. Yikes! Let's just say, it wasn't pretty. Ha Ha! I've always been pretty driven by goals, so this gives me something to work toward and a reason to pedal harder when I'm on my bike. Yay for happy accidents and subtle reminders to keep going!

EATING: Remember when I mentioned turkey chili a few minutes ago? Yeah, well here's the recipe. Any time I've prepared it for family and friends, they've asked for the recipe. It's easy, delicious, and low-fat. I'm still not exactly sure how I managed to mess it up after making the chili for two years. Oy! There really is a first for EVERYTHING. This time around, I was left with an extra "smoky" batch and a stock pot that needed to soak for a full 24 hours. Thank goodness for Febreze and aromatic candles! 

LISTENING TO: Doting mom moment straight ahead! Whenever Max is feeling playful in the evening, I can get him to laugh, and it's ridiculously adorable! I can't wait for Flyboy to get home and hear this high-pitched cackle. The precious sound and smile that follows is enough to make me turn into a giant pile of mush. Despite my best attempts, I haven't been able to successfully record it. Juggling the iPad and getting the timing down is tricky. I suppose this is the type of thing you want to see in person anyway.  

WATCHING: I recently learned my parents have been recording Watch What Happens Live and tuning into Bravo on a regular basis. Get. Out. The fact that I can discuss the quirky nuances of Andy Cohen's Clubhouse with them makes me incredibly giddy. I always loved chatting with them before, but now we get to use terms such as mazel, jackhole, and 
guzzlet. Squee! Perhaps the next time we're together, we can play games like "Amanda Peet, Are These Your Feet?" and bust out the ol' shotski.   

READING: Tatiana of Flora & Fauna is just darling, you guys. If you don't follow her blog or Instagram already, you MUST! The images she shares of her sweet family are lovely and her words are just as wonderful. I can't remember when or how I stumbled upon her site, but I'm SO happy I did. She's like a breath of fresh air. Last week, Tatiana's "Getting Sorted" post spoke to me in a really BIG way. Since we move around a lot, meeting new people can be tough on this introvert. Making friends is a lot of work and I often feel as though people don't really "get" me. This excerpt had me nodding along excitedly with a double-barrel grin plastered all over m' mug. She was able to articulate what I feel all too often, and I couldn't be more grateful to her for sharing her thoughts.
"And there are so many labels to choose from and if you don't fit any of them it starts to feel like you don't belong. I'm not happy enough. I'm not sarcastic/sardonic/funny enough. I'm not chic enough. I care too much. I don't care enough. I share too much. I don't share enough. I post too often. I don't post often enough... So I ship myself off to the island of misfit toys looking for someone who is an introvert but also have a big mouth like me, who likes fashion but also sweatpants, who thinks her children are the biggest blessing and a gift from God but also locks herself in the bathroom with a bag of chocolate kisses and fantasizes about being childless in Vegas and reading a magazine front to back in one sitting (seriously though what kind of bliss would that be???), who loves Kazuo Ishiguro but also all the Real Housewives franchises (Orange County will always be my favorite) and who can never consistently use the same Instagram filter and knows that's it's probably totally ruining her game. You know the line "if you don't have anything nice to say come sit by me" well my line should be "if you're a total weirdo and don't fit in come sit by me." Really please do join me, it's just me and... well nobody else but that means there's plenty of room!"
LOVING: On Monday, Max and I ran a few errands and topped off the morning in town with a little Starbucks. Obvi. As we made our way through the drive-thru, I pulled up to pay and the girl working at the window said, "Hey, your baby isn't crying today!" I couldn't help but smirk because she was right. This felt like a first; I'm certain it was. You see, as long as The Rig is in motion he's happy. The funny business of starting and stopping in a drive-thru makes him extra fussy, but this time around things were different. Part of me felt really proud of the little guy and slightly embarrassed that she knows us well enough to remember that I'm the hot mess in the VeeDubb who frequents the joint for Caramel Macchiatos while my sweet child sounds off like an alarm. Ha Ha! You know, if Max can keep this up, they may just invite us to come back more often. Hot damn!

Enough about me. How are you feeling today? What are you up to? Thanks for stopping by!!

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Wednesday, February 4, 2015


The people at Rocksbox reached out to me recently to see if I'd like to try their jewelry subscription service. Um, that's a no-brainer because I LOVE accessories! For $19 a month you get access to an unlimited closet of designer jewelry. Who doesn't love that? Once you've signed up, you're asked to take a brief survey which gives the stylists a better idea of your aesthetic. Three pieces of jewelry are then sent to you to flaunt and keep for as long as you want, or they can be swapped out when you're ready to try something new. In case you fall hard for any of the snazzy gems, you get the option of purchasing your jewels at 20% off. Not too shabby!

When I assess my colorful arsenal of accessories, there are timeless pieces I know I'll treasure forever and other trendy items that I typically end up giving away. Looking back at the jewelry I've donated, I realize I probably wasted a lot of money on pieces I didn't absolutely love or need. Womp, womp. Don't get me wrong, they were fun to wear at the time, but nothing I really treasured. Naturally, the option of receiving a box filled with three handpicked pieces to style and wear as I please sounds pretty fun and reasonable. I'm keen on trying different styles without the commitment of purchasing the trendy baubles. And in the event I do fall head over heels for any of the pieces, I can always purchase it at a discount price.

When I opened my first Rocksbox last week, I was pretty pleased with the pieces selected for me. I received the Urban Gem Victoria Necklace, the Gorjana Crescent Drop Earrings, and the Robyn Rhodes Ellis Bracelet. I especially love the simplicity of the studs and cuff. The necklace isn't terribly special, but it's fun to style and wear once or twice. I honestly would have never considered trying earrings like the ones the stylist chose for me, but I'm glad they included them in my Rocksbox. I was  also really drawn to the organic shape of the bracelet. I may keep this brand in mind for future gift ideas. This is a piece I can totally see my sister wearing on a frequent basis. Overall, Rocksbox is a fun way to mix things up in the spirit of baubles and bling. Who can you argue with that?!

Interested in giving Rocksbox a whirl? Sign up here, and use this code ashleyxoxo6 to get your first month FREE. 
Have any of you tried Rocksbox or any other stylish subscription services? Thoughts?
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