July 23, 2014

Hump Day || Bump Day - 33 Weeks

Alright people. We're going to do things a little differently around here today because, well, quite honestly I feel like changing it up a bit. Plus I'm pressed for time and don't feel like thinking about the answers to the infamous "bump date" survey. Gotta keep ya guessing at all times, right?!

How about we get straight to the point in none other than bullet point fashion? (Gah. Love me some bullet points. Don't you?!)

  • As of today, we're 33 weeks and 3 days. Holy. Hell. Less than 7 weeks to go. 
  • My mom was a week and a half early with me, and almost 2 weeks early with my brother. Seeing that my pregnancy has been pretty identical to hers (and early deliveries are hereditary...or so I've read), this pretty much means I have like 5 weeks to go. While the uncomfortableness inside and knowing we could possibly have a baby in that short amount of time makes me over the moon excited...the labor/delivery process scares the daylights out of me. 
  • As the days go by, I get more and more nervous about how the end of this whole pregnancy journey will end. It's honestly been (dare I say?) enjoyable up until this point so I just pray it continues to stay that way.
  • Part 1 of our childbirth class was last weekend (part 2 is this weekend) and against what everyone has said, I am actually glad we signed up for these. Though the breathing exercises are a JOKE (Seriously...who's going to remember which breathing technique to use when you have a mini human coming out of your girly parts?), I can say I did actually enjoy learning the whole process of knowing when you're in labor, when to come to the hospital, how they check you for progress, what the epidural looks like (YIKES) and how the entire epidural process works. And though the nurse teaching is the most monotone, unexciting creature ever, she did make me feel more comfortable about the whole process and that no matter what happens, mine and the baby's health is their #1 priority.
  • We have 99% of the nursery COMPLETE! Like, clothes in the drawers, stuff on the walls, sheets on the bed...complete!! Though I despise the store and it's Lego-like furniture, I'll be making an Ikea haul this weekend to get drawer and closet organizers so hopefully this weekend I can snap pics and post about it next week!
  • Maternity clothes...no one told me I would grow out of them. Talk about an awesome feeling...#not
  • We've started taking the stroller with us on our walks with Oakley in hopes of teaching her to walk next to it without acting a fool. Though I feel completely silly walking by people with a pink teddy bear in the car seat and an 8-month bump, this was really important for Beau and I to do and surprisingly enough, Oakley didn't act like a complete hoodlum during the process! She was a little interested/weary of the new big black accessory on wheels, but overall, she did well!
  • My hair. I can't get enough of it right now. Though it needs a trim (big time), it's so thick and full and I am honestly soaking up this pregnancy perk.
  • My belly ALSO feels equally huge. HUGE. Especially at the end of the day. Who am I kidding? Everything from the neck down feels huge these days. I can definitely see why women say the last 2 months are "uncomfortable". 
  • My belly button is on its way out...and quickly. It's become completely flat and I know it's only a matter of time before I have an outty.
  • The dress I'm wearing in this week's pic...omg. I can't get enough of it. I found it on major clearance at Gap and of course, now they're sold out in my size. Just my luck. It's literally the softest material ever and because it's spaghetti strap, I plan on doubling it as a nursing dress.
  • Things that have become rather interesting thanks to the bump...putting shoes on, shaving, putting on lotion, wiping (just being honest here), getting in and out of bed all 18 times in the middle of the night, hmmm...what else?! 
  • Also, watermelon, crushed ice and smoothies...I could make a meal out of these three "food" items. And sometimes I do. The day watermelon season ends will be, quite possibly, the saddest day of the year. (Only slightly exaggerating there...but really. I will be one sad mofo.)

And that's a wrap. I've got things to do. Places to go. People to see. And more importantly, coffee to drink. ;) Ta ta! 

July 17, 2014

Pregnancy Pillows - The End All, Be All

When I first found out I was knocked up, and after reality started to set in a little bit, I was quickly reminded of the fact that I had to start sleeping on my side ASAP. While I know you don't have to sleep on your back til you get closer to 20-ish weeks, as a prominent back sleeper, I knew I had to start right away in order to "train" myself to be a slide sleeper as my pregnancy progressed. (Let's just say at 32 weeks into this thing, I still prefer to sleep on my back!)

I've heard different things from different people and doctors and it seems like everyone has a different opinion when it comes to sleeping on your side so I figured it definitely wouldn't hurt baby (or me) for me to sleep on my side, so I might as well just go with it. To each his own, right?

Having 21 pillows (yes...we've recently graduated from 19 to 21 pillows) on our bed, I just knew I'd have no issues building a moat around my body to keep me on my side throughout the night.


'Said' moat shifted around like a moving target and it never failed, I woke up flat on my back and freaking the heck out that I had somehow hurt our baby...

Which was when the hunt for a long body pillow began.

Hi baby!

Little did I know...apparently I'm not the first woman to have issues sleeping on her side (shocker) and someone, ok a genius in my book, had already invented to pregnancy pillow. (Why can't I invent things like this??!!) But not just any pregnancy pillow. I'm talking about end all, be all when it comes to pregnancy pillows.

We're talking about le Bump Nest.

While "Bump Nest" is a fairly fitting name for this pillow, I prefer to think of it as the "Body Cloud". Oh my heavens...I wish I would have known of this thing before being pregnant! It literally wraps around your entire body, no matter which way you sleep, and you literally feel like you're sleeping in the middle of a cloud. And yes, even if you sleep on your back. 

I can honestly say, in my house, the Bump Nest is pregnant wife, husband and dog approved and I wouldn't be surprised if Beau made me invest in one for himself. Since this baby has made it's way into our house, it is never without a body of some sort laying smack dab in the middle of it.

Exhibit A:

I laid the pillow down on the rug to snap a picture and Captain Sassypants planted herself right in the middle of it and being 8 months pregnant, I wasn't about to try to make an 80-pound ball of attitude get off of it either.

While Oakley is not quite modeling the use of the Bump Nest the way she should, you can easily see that it's a family favorite and I'd be lying if I said I'll never use this again after pregnancy. I truly don't know how I possibly slept comfortably before without it.

It's been on road trips, plane flights (yes...plane flights) and moves from the bed to the couch on a daily basis. Not only is the Bump Nest as fluffy as ever ("It's SO FLUFFY!" -name that movie), the cover is incredibly soft and can easily be thrown in the washing machine. It comes in 8 different colors and they even have replaceable covers just in case your case gets a little worn out...you know...from your dog taking over it. ;)

And for the record...I'm not just saying all of these great things because I'm "supposed to". This is an honest to goodness review of a product that has exceeded every bit of my expectations and I just hope it reaches out to someone, pregnant or not, who might be looking for a little added comfort in their bed!

And on that note, I now want to jump back into that big ol' body cloud and go back to bed. ;) Who else is with me?!

July 16, 2014

Hump Day || Bump Day - 32 Weeks

For the record, I hate this picture but it'll have to do.

How far along: 32 weeks!

Baby's size: Squash!

Baby's progress: Baby girl is a little over 3 pounds and about 16 inches long. I can tell sister is growing up a storm because there is definitely less room for her to squirm around! Also-she's head down already. YIKES!! She's almost ready to make her entrance!

Weight gain: 20 pounds. Not mad about it one bit. Perhaps this is the Fruit Loops, bagels and cheese talking, but I can honestly say I have thoroughly enjoyed gaining these 20 pounds!

Stretch marks: None in my stomach, hips or thighs, but still a small one on my boob. I knew these things were growing out of control...

Sleep: Sleep is good when it's good. The restless legs have subsided (hopefully) but I've noticed when I wake up to go to the bathroom all 18 times in the middle of the night, it's getting harder and harder to roll out of bed. And I literally mean rollllllll outta bed...

Gender: Girl. Duh.

Movement: Yes-all the time! Either her butt/back is pushed up against my belly button or her foot is poking out of my right side. It's crazy! 

Best moment this week: Paisley's crib bedding being delivered!!!!! I have literally waited almost 12 weeks for it to come in because it was off in Never Neverland being designed so when I opened the box and put it all in her crib, I wanted to cry. It's just so pretty and all I can do is imagine a sweet little girl snoozing away in there! 
Crib bedding found here

Also-totally not related to my pregnancy, but this weekend I'm helping host a gender reveal party for one of my absolute best friends, Ashley, and I got to find out the gender on Sunday! Needless to say, I am SO excited for her to find out what she's having!!! I feel like knowing the gender of someone else's baby when no one else knows is probably the coolest thing ever!

Looking forward to: Seeing all of our friends this weekend at Ashley's gender reveal party!! Also, making more progress in the nursery and attending our first birthing class this Sunday. (Beau is just thrilled about it...lemme tell ya!) ;)

Something else I'm looking forward to is Katie finding out the gender of her little one today!!! I just remember all the excitement that comes with finally knowing whether it's a boy or girl and my heart is happy knowing that she will soon know whether Baby K is a mini athlete, like her husband, or sassy as hell, just like she is. ;)

Food cravings: Watermelon, still. Really...any juicy fruit...pineapple, cantaloupe, strawberries, etc. And chocolate. You could not have paid me to eat chocolate the first half of my pregnancy but I swear it's all I can think about these days!

Weirdest food I ate this week: I'm ashamed. But it was so worth it. Are you ready for this...Brown Sugar & Cinnamon Pop Tarts. There. I said it...

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope

Labor signs: Negatory

Symptoms: The restless legs have subsided (thank GOD because I was getting ready to saw both of my legs off had this lasted much longer) and I believe my SI pain is on its way out, too. The only symptom, really, is pubic symphisis and dang, does it hurt! If I sit too long it hurts. If I stand too long it hurts. What gives?!

Workouts: I got in a great workout last night and it felt a.maz.ing. I did a little bike action with some arm weights and left feeling like a million bucks. Thanks to the pain in my pelvis/pubic region, I think it's safe to say most leg workouts (squats, lunges) are out of the picture for a while...but tricep dips are totally my thing. As awkward as it is trying to dip this big ol' belly between my legs, they hurt SO good!

What I miss: Having a waistline. Just throwing that out there. I miss having a figure...but soon enough, I'll have my figure back and a little baby in my arms so I'll be patient and wait this one out! ;)

Things that suck: Just feeling achy all over at times. I think I've said this before but it's just so weird to not feel "normal".

Things that don't suck: Being pregnant with yet another best friend!! (Yes...that makes 6 friends and 1 cousin, so far...and there's still one more!) ;) I've been wanting to shout it from the rooftops for weeks now so I'm so glad the cat is out of the bag that one of my other best girlfriends, Brooke, is pregnant with baby #2! I had so much fun snagging these sweet shots of their little growing family this past weekend!

Is Jude not the most precious little boy EVER??!! I want to steal him. 

And just like that, I'm 8 months pregnant. EIGHT MONTHS. What in the WHAT?!!

July 14, 2014

Bringing Baby Home

Other than bringing home a sweet baby girl, I have to be honest when I say that I have probably been most excited about finding something to bring that sweet baby girl home IN. I swear I scoured Etsy for hours on end searching for the most perfect newborn hospital/coming home outfits. Hours.

While I haven't decided on the exact outfit we'll be bringing Paisley home in, I have a small collection to choose from. Hey...a girl needs options and if she's anything like her momma, she needs LOTS of options.

I found one hospital outfit at Janie & Jack but I think it's a leeeetle too big for a newborn (first time mom mistake: finding out "0-3 months" is not the same as "newborn"...). While I'll still be bringing that one to the hospital as an option, I have a few other outfits to choose from, too.

Her other hospital outfit is as precious (and girly) as ever and will definitely be worn while we're there, too! You can find this little number here

And the final outfit I've added to Miss Paisley's collection is this adorable monogrammed converter gown.

And if you're a first time mom, or have no idea what the heck a "converter gown" is...have no fear. I didn't either...until I actually got it home and realized that it "converts" from a gown into a onesie. #duh #genius

I instantly fell in love with the delicate light pink stitching and, of course, the monogram! Not to mention, it is THE softest pima cotton to ever exist. I swear I'm constantly asking myself "Do they make this stuff in my size!?" because it's just so incredibly soft!

If you are expecting a little one, or are anything like me and have seven girlfriends (yes...SEVEN) who are pregnant, you can enjoy 10% off your entire purchase from Monogram Maison through the end of August! Just use to code "Southernmess10" at checkout!

So there. A discount and I just saved you from spending hours on end searching high and low for the perfect newborn outfits. You're welcome. ;)

And if you're wondering...yes...I'm still a little shocked that in 8 weeks (or less?), there will be a precious pink little baby wearing all these outfits. Where on earth does the time go??!!

July 9, 2014

Hump Day || Bump Day - 31 Weeks

How far along: 31 weeks!!

Baby's size: A pineapple. A FREAKING PINEAPPLE!!

Weight gain: I'm happy to report I'm still at the 19 pound mark, even after last week's appointment, which was my first appointment to not lose or gain any weight. I'm okay with it, but I'm pretty sure this next appointment will definitely tell different. ;)

Stretch marks: No. Thank you, Burts Bees Mama Bee!

Sleep: Ugh. Sleep is getting to be more and more A) minimal and B) of a hassle. This week I've been struck with a teensy bit of restless leg syndrome and it is, by far, the most obnoxious thing EVER. While I'm not experiencing tingling or numbness, when I lay down at night I feel the constant urge to move my legs. It's weird. And I can say I hate it and have dreaded going to bed every night for the last 3 nights because of this. I've gotten a solid 5 hours of sleep each night for the last 4 nights. Not awesome.

Gender: I think we've covered this...

Movement: Yes! I swear I have a little contortionist in my belly!! It's crazy to see an elbow pop out here, a butt stick out here or a foot poke out there! Pretty sure this will always be my favorite thing about pregnancy. :) Oh-except she needs to find a new place other than my ribcage to hibernate. Talk about a weird feeling having your baby lodged under your ribs!

Best moment this week: Un-baby related but my best moment in the past week was definitely the time spent just relaxing and doing absolutely nothing. Typically, on the Fourth of July, I'm all gung-ho about cooking and being out by the pool but this year, I literally didn't even get dressed for the day until 5pm. I did nothing all. day. long. for the first time in what feels like forever and it just felt good. I think my body needed that.

Looking forward to: Baby girl's crib bedding is being delivered on Friday! The sweet ladies at Green Pea Baby have been hard at work designing the perfect crib set for the past 10 weeks and I just cannot WAIT to show y'all! Also-I'm really looking forward to hanging up all the decor I bought last weekend in the nursery so those nekkid walls can stop looking so bare!

Food cravings: WATERMELON. I want it all day. Everyday. I cut one up on Saturday and it's already 80% gone. I canNOT get enough watermelon right now. Oh-and I want sweets. Gimme all the sweets...anything with sugar! What is wrong with me?! 

Weirdest food I ate this week: Nothing "weird" but I've most definitely had some form of dessert every single day. (Yikes.) On the 4th, I had 3 desserts. #oops

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nothing making me sick but last night I got probably the worst stomach ache I've had in a long time and all I wanted to do was curl up in the fetal position, which, might I add...IS IMPOSSIBLE WHEN YOU'RE ALMOST 8 MONTHS PREGNANT!

Labor signs: Nope

Symptoms: The SI pain from last week has subsided (I think) but the pelvis/pubic bone pain is still hanging around. And it's not fun. Also, like I mentioned, restless legs at night but I'm really trying to combat this one with herbal teas and magnesium. I am PRAYING this does not stick around for the next 8-9 weeks because I might go out back and saw both of my own legs off...

Workouts: Yes! I got in a really good workout on Monday night, which felt GREAT, and I am looking forward to sneaking in another workout (or two?!) later this week. Because of my pelvis/pubic bone pain, I've had to switch from high intensity walking on the treadmill at an incline to spinning and as crazy as it sounds, it actually doesn't hurt to do the bike! Though you burn like ZERO calories on the bike, I broke a sweat and got my heartbeat up a little, which is the goal at this point.

What I miss: Just being completely honest here but I miss feeling normal. This week I've really started to feel pregnant and I can tell it's starting to take a toll on this body of mine. I've noticed I am a bit more uncomfortable at times and if I do too much one day, I feel like I got hit by a bus the next. I know pregnancy changes your body forever, but I'll be glad to feel semi-normal again once I have this baby girl in my arms and not in my belly.

Things that suck: Need I mention it again? Restless legs. Seriously-to not have control of your own limbs is so weird and flat out stinks.

Things that don't suck: Knowing that in less than 2 months, we'll have a baby to call our own! I seriously cannot wait for the new baby smell, the snuggling, the little noises, the wrinkles...and everything else...yes, even the midnight feedings and explosive diapers, that come with a brand new baby. :)

And that wraps up this week's bump date! Until next week...

July 8, 2014

The Work-From-Home Balance

Last week I addressed the whole stay-at-home-mom versus full-time working mom question I've been receiving lately regarding Little Miss Paisley. You can read the entire Q&A post here, or I can cut right to the chase and tell you that I will not become a stay-at-home-mom once baby girl arrives. Like I've said before, though I'd love to toy with the idea in the future, I thoroughly enjoy what I do on an everyday basis (Hello?! Social media & email marketing...LOVE!) so I have no intentions of giving that up, plus, Beau and I both need my salary to continue to afford, well, life. Especially now that daycare expenses are involved... (Shoot me now. I should probably start fundraising...)

That being said, while the little one is in day care, I will still continue to have the privilege of working from home two days/week, Mondays & Fridays. 

As a writer, I cannot possibly express the importance of having a balance of working from home and working in an office setting. Mondays and Fridays are super writing-intensive for me, while Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays are all focused on meetings and collaboration with co-workers, with writing in between. When I agreed to this type of work schedule, I'll be honest, I was a little curious how it would all pan out but it is honestly far better than I ever expected. If you're in a creative type position and find yourself being interrupted (or easily distracted, if you're anything like me) do yourself a favor and talk to your boss about a combination of working from home and the office. Though I can really only vouch for myself here, I can definitely say it has been a winning combination.

That being said...I have had to teach myself to become very disciplined on the days I work from home so I thought I'd share my tips with anyone else who may be in a work-from-home position or anyone who may be considering it. Take it for what it's worth, mmkay?! 

#1 Start early. I always have a much more productive day on the days I get up at my 'normal' alarm clock time, which is 5:45am. Though I must admit...during my first trimester, when exhaustion hit me like a ton of bricks, I did not stay true to this. I woke up at 7am and stumbled to my computer (#honesttruth). That extra hour and 15 minutes was much needed but now that my energy is back, I'm up and at it bright and early. I wake up, head straight to the coffee pot and get my morning started right away.

#2 Get out of your pajamas. While many people may think that working from home means working in your pajamas, this is a false assumption...for me, at least. Now I'm not saying I get up and do my hair or makeup because I actually never do either on Mondays or Fridays, but I do change out of my pj's, usually into workout clothes, so that I can feel like a semi-normal human being and so that on my lunch break, I'm ready to take Oakley for her walk.

#3 Stick to a routine. Wake up at the same time as you would as the days you're going into an office. Whether you get started with your workday right away, or you throw in a load of laundry, snoozing through your alarm clock is never a good way to start off your day.

#4 Set up your office in a room that makes you happy and is comfortable. After all, you're going to be spending quite a bit of time there. And NO...your couch, though comfortable, does not count as an "office". 

#5. Invest in a good computer. Or two. I have one computer for work, and one personal computer and I am always sure to keep them separate. While they both sit on the same desk and I rarely even turn on my personal computer during work-from-home days, it's nice to have it there when I need it. Also recommended, invest in dual monitors for your machines. Best money spent. EVER.
Kate Spade Agenda here

#6 Plan out your days & write out your goals. I've always been the type to use a paper calendar, rather than a digital version and I absolutely positively without a doubt could not survive without a good agenda. And I mean a gooooood agenda. My current agenda (and honest to God, my favorite agenda of all time) is my new Kate Spade 2015 jumbo agenda.

The Kate Spade 2015 agenda is so nice and clean and not to mention, it has monthly, weekly and daily views, which is a MUST for this girl.

...not to mention the gold touches make it that much more pretty to look at...

...and so do the inspiring quotes that change when you flip to a new month.

#6 Surround yourself with things that inspire you. Like inspiring quotes, yummy candles and pictures of ridiculously good looking men... ;)
Watercolor via Shalyn Nelson | Beautiful Mess dish towel via Anthro | Coaster tutorial here 

#7 Hire ridiculously cute co-workers...specifically the furry, four-legged kind that stick by your side all day long and don't complain when the printer is jammed...

#8 This one may seem silly but you must remember to HYDRATE!! Maybe it's just me but I drink SO much more water when I'm at my office, versus when I'm working from home! Make sure you make it a conscious effort to drink lots of water throughout the day! It helps to detox your body, which improves energy levels and can help you think more clearly. (And Lord knows I need all the help I can get in both of those arenas!)
Mason Jar Mug here

#9 Take a lunch break. I am a huge stickler when it comes to breaking up your workday by always taking a lunch break. Because I'm at home, my lunches usually consist of some sort of quick leftovers from the night before or a salad so I spend the first 10-15 minutes eating, and the last portion of my lunch break taking Oakley for a walk. Even if you don't have a dog, get outside on your lunch break and get some fresh air. I promise you will notice a HUGE difference in your day and your creativity from just a simple walk around the block!

#10 Have a cutoff time. Though I don't always follow this, I typically stop working at the end of a "normal" work day. Though I love what I do, it's so important to have that work/life balance and shutting down your computer and not responding emails after 5pm is the first step to achieving that balance.

And if you're still here, you get an award. ;)

No but really...I definitely encourage the whole "work from home thing" if it fits for your position...especially any type of creative position, but I also HIGHLY recommend setting guidelines and rules for yourself while working from home. I hope someone out there in the world finds this helpful!

July 7, 2014

Oreo Pops: The Ultimate Recipe for all the Non-Bakers of the World

My 100% African girl being as American as she can possibly be. ;) And yes, she was as thrilled to be wearing that stupid headband as she looks...

And we're back. Why do holiday weekends go by so fast?! I swear...the longer the weekends are, the quicker they go by. Right?! 

Anywho...like every other American in the country, my weekend was packed with time spent with family and friends, a pool, food, dessert, fireworks and even a few fourth of July sales. And when I mean I hit up a few sales, I mean I finally nailed down some of the cutest stuff to hang up in baby girl's nursery!! Finding stuff to hang on walls has always been an issue for me but I cannot WAIT for Beau to help me hang all the stuff I bought this weekend! We're getting closer to a finished nursery, people!

Ok so back to the food. I've always and forever said "I am not a baker" and that still stands true to this day. Let's just say measuring cups, exact measurements and I don't get along and it never fails, something goes awry and I wind up pissed off with the smoke detector going off. Never. Fails.

But. BUT! I can rock the heck out of "no-bake" recipes, such as these delicious, and might I add addictive, Oreo pops! I (obviously) made these for the 4th, but they can easily be made for any holiday or occasion: birthdays, parties, showers, Christmas, etc...

I found this recipe on Pinterest a couple of weeks ago and since then, this is my third time to make them. I'd like to go ahead and deem myself a pro Oreo pop maker. Take notes, people. ;)

Here's what you'll need:

  • Shish kabob sticks or popsicle sticks
  • Double Stuf Oreos (regular Oreos do not work as well...)
  • White baking chocolate (about .5 ounces per Oreo)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • sprinkles
Step one: Open up your Oreos and place shish kabob sticks or popsicle sticks in the middle of the icing, covering back up with the top of the Oreo once you've done this to all of them.

Step two: Melt your baking chocolate. I prefer to heat mine in a glass bowl in the microwave. The trick here to not burning or over-cooking your dipping chocolate is to make sure you add the tablespoon of olive oil. DO NOT FORGET TO ADD THE OLIVE OIL...unless you want to make another trip to the store for more baking chocolate.

Step three: Dip each Oreo into the dipping chocolate and place on parchment paper.

Step four: Sprinkle with sprinkles of your choice and allow to cool/dry for at least an hour before eating. Make sure the chocolate is completely hardened.

I find these to be good as they are, but they are even better when you freeze them or put them in the refrigerator for a while! Needless to say, they were a HIT at the 4th of July party we went to! AND there was no baking involved. I'd like to consider that a win for this non-baking chick!

Hope you all had a great, long holiday weekend, too!! It's crazy to think the next holiday weekend is Labor Day, which is also my due date. {Insert freak out mode/happy dance!}

July 3, 2014

Pregnancy, The Nursery, The Dog, The Blog & More...

Recently I've received a ton of questions regarding pregnancy, baby girl's nursery, the dog and more so rather than replying individually to each of these comments/emails, I figured I'd answer them all in one big fat post.

I (think) I've included the main questions but if I forgot anything, or if you have any questions for me, feel free to leave them in the comments and I'll update this post with the answers!

Overall, how is being pregnant?

I think I'm finally at the point to where I can say I've truthfully LOVED every part of carrying this baby girl in my belly. (I write this as she's wedged up under my rib cage...) I have thanked God every single day for not only blessing us with this little girl, but for keeping a close watch on both her and I's healthy throughout this entire journey and he continues to watch over us on a daily basis. Sure-I've put on almost 20 pounds, my clothes don't fit, a double chin is slowing making it's debut and everyday a different part of my body aches or feels weird but that's what I committed to when Beau and I decided to start a family! I have gladly given up my body for our sweet girl and I'd do it again in a heartbeat! (And I will!)

When do we get to see the nursery?

The nursery, to me, is definitely a big deal because we've put so much time, effort and thought into every little detail, but that's not why I'm holding out on y'all. As soon as I have her bedding in and everything is about 90% put together, I'll be ready to "reveal" baby girl's room! Also, I have not a single thing hung on the walls yet. I don't know why but putting nails in the wall is so hard for me to do so as soon as I have stuff up on the walls + her bedding, I'll be ready to post pictures. :) I promise!

What about Oakley?

Like I say to everyone who asks this question...what about her? Oakley has been and still will be a huge part of our family. She was my first baby girl, and always will be, so I have absolutely no intentions of kicking her out to live in the backyard or anything crazy like that. Will things change? I'm sure they will change a little bit, especially when baby first comes home, but Beau and I have both agreed that we refuse to push her to the side and completely forget about how important it is for us to love on her, take her on walks and play with her. It's a really big deal for us to make sure that when Paisley comes home, Oakley still gets all the love and attention we gave her before. And for the record, NO...we will not be kicking her out of our bed either. Baby will have her own bed or bassinet to sleep in, while Beau and I will continue allowing Oakley to sleep with us. It's all she's ever known and I just can't fathom kicking her off the bed onto the floor. Plus, she's the best snuggle bug in all the land. Why would I want to change that?!

Will you be staying at home after baby comes?

I have planned to take off 12 weeks once baby girl makes her big debut but after that, it's back to work for this girl. Though I'd love to one day stay at home with my babies, now is not the right time for that. I love my job far too much to give it up, plus we still need my portion of income to afford life...especially now that daycare is a part of the budget. (Damn you, day care! SO EXPENSIVE!!)

Are you planning on more kids in the future?

Yes-Beau and I fully plan on having (and pray for) at least 2 mini's running around our household. We both come from families of two children so it just came naturally for both of us to want two kids. Should God bless us with more, of course we'd welcome that but as of now, we're just planning for two.

When can we expect baby #2?

I honestly don't know! Beau and I have discussed our kiddos being 2 years apart, but then again, that was before we actually had one. Paisley could give us a complete run for our money, making us push this back but as of now, as in this very moment, I'd like to start trying for baby numero dos some time in 2016.

What prenatal vitamins are you taking?

Many of you may (or may not) know that I work for a health and wellness center/supplement company. Therefore, all the vitamins I take come from my company because I know they've been researched and are of the highest, purest quality on the market. When you're pregnant, you really have to scale back on what you're taking, especially with herbs, because different vitamins, minerals and herbs affect women differently when they're pregnant. Also, a lot of research still has not been conducted on the effects of certain vitamins during pregnancy. In saying this, I've kept my prenatal vitamin regimen very basic for the simple fact that A) I didn't want to take anything that might negatively effect baby girl or my pregnancy and B) because I have enough to worry about right now and taking a whole slew of vitamins is the last thing I want to worry about. Also, I've heard a lot of prenatal vitamins can make women sick/nauseous and because I've taken these for years and they've never made me feel this way, I knew they were safe for me to continue taking while pregnant.

Here's my list of prenatal vitamins:

Will you continue blogging after baby?

This is a question I can honestly say I don't know the answer to. While I'd like to say "yes!", I really can't answer this because I just don't know what life will be like being a full-time working mom. It's become very obvious to me (and probably you, too) that blogging is not a top priority for me anymore. Though I still enjoy it, I am finding it harder and harder to not only to find the time to write my own posts, but to read others and connect with other bloggers and being an all or nothing girl, I've struggled with this for a while. Do I keep going? Or do I give it all up? Do I just write when I feel like it and not worry about the pressures that can come with blogging? I don't know! I guess only time will tell. :)

Ok! That's it...I think?! I hope you can all understand/support the decisions Beau and I have made for our little family and if not, too bad! ;)

Have a great Fourth of July weekend, y'all!



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