Entries Tagged as 'Life'

fam photos with minted

Posted on: Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Hi! We recently had some family photos taken via Minted’s new Photo Op program and I wanted to share them on my blog! We took our photos a few blocks around our apartment, including in Alamo Square (our go-to park for picnics and dog adventures).

Minted’s Photo Op program allows you to set up and schedule a convenient 30-minute family portrait mini session and holiday card styling for just $100. It’s a perfect and affordable way to get high-quality, professional photos that you can use for holiday cards, hang in your home, or just to keep for yourself. More details below! I really love how our photos turned out! 💛

TO GET STARTED…

Visit Minted’s Photo Op website, enter your location (this year, the service is only available in the San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles Metropolitan Area, and New York Metropolitan Area) and start your Photo Op quiz.

Choose your Style – Candid, Informal, or Classic. I choose Informal, which falls somewhere in between candid and classic.

Choose your “Look” – you can select the vibe you’re going for, like neighborhood stroll or monochrome or photo strip style. Or, select your “look” by location beautiful walls (cool walls as the photo backdrop), beach, in-home or on your porch.

Choose your Location – enter your address (so they can match you with a photographer in your area)

Choose designs that inspire you – select from different holiday card themes and styles that inspire you. You definitely don’t have to use these designs; it’s basically a way for the Minted team to determine your style and how you might want the photos to look within a card itself.

Choose a date + time – self-explanatory 😉

That’s it!

A FEW DAYS LATER…

You receive an email from Minted with 10 retouched photos from the Minted team and a folder where you can download all photos from the photography session. You also will receive recommendations on Minted holiday cards that would work well with your particular photos (and get 20% off your order!). Of course, you aren’t required to order holiday cards, but this program makes it super easy to find the perfect holiday card to go with your photos. 🎄

Thanks to Minted for partnering with me on this post!

second trimester update

Posted on: Thursday, November 9, 2017

Hi friends! I’m now two weeks into the THIRD trimester of my pregnancy (whoa) but wanted to share a quick overview of the second trimester (so weeks 13-27), for those of you interested! I had shared some pregnancy updates in my
first baby announcement post, so thought it would be fun to give an update on how things have changed since then!

It’s pretty common to hear that the second trimester is the best part of being pregnant (or the “honeymoon period”) because you feel the most normal, as you’re out of the morning sickness often experienced in the first trimester, but often not big enough to experience the uncomfortableness and aches/pains of the third trimester. Here’s all the dets on what’s been up with me and the little one growing inside me! Also, I wasn’t planning to share these publicly, but I’m amazed just seeing how the bump has grown, so there’s some photos of the progress at the bottom of the post.

SECOND TRIMESTER HIGHLIGHTS:

Traveling to Europe (Greece and Italy) for two weeks! And, thankfully, feeling really good throughout the entire trip.

Celebrating our second anniversary!

In the middle of the second trimester at 19 weeks, before our Europe trip, we found out the baby’s gender! She’s a GIRL!!! It was such a special moment during the ultrasound appointment when we found out and super fun to surprise our family (I did a group video chat with my entire family to tell them) and friends.

Feeling the baby kick for the first time. Annnnd, now she’s doing it all the time, which helps make it all feel more real and exciting! We can also hear her heartbeat and even hiccups. 💛

Trips to Nashville and Ohio! My sisters met E and I down in Nashville for the weekend, and I went back to Ohio with them to visit my parents and grandparents. It was super fun to spend time with them! My last visit with them was around 15 weeks, so the whole baby news thing felt a lot more real this time around.

Decorating and prepping our apartment for baby! Can’t wait to share more photos of the baby’s room soon! 😍

Hiring a doula! We hired the amazing Julia Peterson as our doula and working with her leading up to the birth has been so, so helpful and empowering.

20 weeks!

FEELING (PHYSICALLY): most obviously, I definitely “popped” and it’s obvious that I’m pregnant. I think the bump really started obviously showing towards the end of the second trimester…maybe around weeks 23-24? Other than that, I am way, way, way less tired than the first trimester. In those first few weeks (mostly like 7-13), I was so tired that I had to take a nap almost every afternoon because I physically couldn’t stay awake. During the second trimester, I really felt my energy increase. I did try to stay super attuned to my body and rest when I was tired, but it wasn’t the same all-consuming need to nap like I initially experienced. The acne I had in the first trimester went away completely (🙏🏻) during the second trimester, thanks in part (I think) to my probiotic vitamins. I also shared that I was really gassy in the first trimester, which I think wasn’t as noticeable or common in the second trimester. Towards the end of the second trimester, I really started to experience a lot more back pain, especially at the end of the day and while I’m sleeping. 😣 Unfortunately, I don’t think this is going to go away or get better, but trying to stay positive about it, since overall, I’ve been really fortunate in terms of pregnancy symptoms and issues. Overall, I felt much more myself and definitely more productive than the first trimester.

FEELING (EMOTIONALLY/MENTALLY): a lot of the feelings of overwhelmingness, stress, anxiety and panic subsided in the second trimester. I think having the news “out there” really, really helped. We told our family and close friends at 8-9 weeks in the first trimester and publicly shared a little after the second trimester began at 15-16 weeks. While I did experience some stress in the second trimester, it was more focused on the future and OMG WE’RE GOING TO BE PARENTS excitement vs. stress and worry about all of the testing procedures, possibility of miscarriage, etc. Overall, during the second trimester (and now) I’m feeling a lot more calm and at peace with the birth process and just being a mom in general. It’s obviously still overwhelming, but it’s shifted to more a really good overwhelmed vs. stress/pain/anxiety overwhelmed, if that makes sense. I’m super grateful that Eric is such a calm and stable person, because he often navigates me back to a more centered, peaceful view on all the life things. ✨

PREPARING FOR BABY: I’ve been doing lots of shopping for cute baby things! I’ve been told to not buy a ton baby clothes, because other people will do that for us, but it’s so hard. 😳 I’ve been in full-blown organizational mode, so sorting baby clothes and accessories by age/size. During the second trimester, we really started getting our apartment prepped for baby. We transitioned the walk-in closet off our bedroom into the baby “room” and put up removable wallpaper, set up the crib, etc. More to come! We also worked on our birth preferences with our doula during the end of the second trimester, which made me feel a lot more educated, empowered and excited about the birth experience.

READING: Mama Natural Week-by-Week Pregnancy Guide (and a ton of non-baby related books that I shared in this post)

WEARING: I really haven’t transitioned into a full-blown maternity wardrobe, but instead trying to weave in regular clothes with a few maternity pieces. During the second trimester, I bought a Bellaband, this amazing band that allows you to wear your regular, non-maternity jeans for longer. I was able to wear my regular jeans with the Bellaband until about 23-24 weeks. Woo hoo! In the second trimester, did pick up some maternity basics that have been great, including maternity jeans from ASOS (SO COMFY) and this black STORQ jumpsuit. I’ve been wearing regular non-maternity tops and sweaters (since most of my clothes are oversize and baggy anyway 😆) with leggings a lot, as well as flowy non-maternity dresses. In terms of footwear, I pretty much wore tennis shoes or my slides/mules throughout the entire second trimester (and now, too!). I’m working on a big blog post of my maternity wardrobe, so stay tuned for that!

FITNESS: Thankfully, I’ve still been able to work out and did so throughout the second trimester pretty consistently. When we were traveling in Europe (weeks 19-21 of my pregnancy), I didn’t workout regularly, but we did lots of walking. When home, I’ve worked out on average about 4-5x/week doing a mix of yoga, Pilates and SoulCycle classes. I have been doing more yoga at home (E and I are both obsessed with Yoga with Adriene) and also started taking prenatal-specific Pilates and yoga classes.

FOOD AVERSIONS/CRAVINGS: Same as first trimester – give me all the smoothies or just cold, fruity things! During the second trimester, I was definitely craving less healthy stuff. Usually I eat fairly healthy and WANT to eat fruits, veggies, etc. but I definitely wasn’t as interested in that stuff throughout the second trimester.

VITAMINS: Silver Fern Probiotic Vitamins and Care/Of Vitamin Packs (including a prenatal, calcium and fish oil vitamins)

HELPFUL PRODUCTS: Saje Pain Release Essesntial Oil (so helpful on my back), The Honest Company Belly Balm  and LEGGINGS!

Thanks for reading!

18 weeks!

20 weeks!

25 weeks!

27 weeks!

life update

Posted on: Wednesday, August 16, 2017

I have some fun and v big news to share today! We are having a baby! And whew, it feels really good to finalllly share the news publicly (I’m so bad about being secretive). 💛 Our little BB is coming in January, so he/she will share a birthday month with me!

We found out we were pregnant when the baby was about 5 weeks and now we’re at about 16 weeks! At first, and especially during the first few weeks, it felt surreal and didn’t quite sink it that yes, we are having a kid. A few weeks ago, we had an ultrasound where we felt and heard the baby’s heartbeat and saw he/she moving (dancing) – it was so cool to experience and really clicked like THIS IS HAPPENING.

This is obviously a totally new phase of life for me/us and there’s a lot of unknowns but I’m trying to remind myself that so many other life phases were unknowns too – moving across the country, getting married, etc. And, I figured out those new phases out and learned a lot along the way. And I will do the same with this whole pregnancy/mamahood thing too!

Thank you to everyone for being so supportive and encouraging and amazing and kind to us! My support system is truly one of life’s biggest and richest gifts and words can’t quite explain how much I appreciate the advice, kindness, celebrations and love from our family and friends. ✨

And, I happen to think Prince Jack will be the cutest big (furry) brother. 💛 What do you guys think? 😉

In case you’re interested, here’s some random updates about my pregnancy so far!

FEELING (PHYSICALLY): overall, really good! Fortunately, I haven’t been sick at all (🙏🏻), but I have been super, super tired. Like, must-take-an-afternoon-nap and still go to bed at 9pm tired. Since I work remotely, my schedule is fairly flexible, so I’ve been waking up earlier to start work at 7/8am and then taking an hour or so nap in the afternoon and resuming work in the afternoon/evening. The tiredness was especially true/all-consuming during the first trimester, but like clockwork, I’ve started to get my energy back after hitting 13 or so weeks. Whew! I’ve also been feeling a lot more soreness in my lower back/hips/obliques. Not surprising, of course, since my body is obviously going to expand, but still kind of painful. My Saje pain release essential oil has been a lifesaver! Oh, and my acne realllllly flared up at the beginning, which has been a not-so-great (but apparently common) pregnancy symptom. Oh and one more not-so-glamourous and pretty gross physical thing — the first few weeks I was super gassy. It wasn’t great. This symptom wasn’t one I heard about a lot so…maybe people just keep that super private or maybe I’m the only one who experienced this symptom. 😂

FEELING (EMOTIONALLY/MENTALLY): When I first found out, I was a mix of happy and panicked. This happened a lot faster than we expected, so I guess I was just thrown off guard a bit! The all-encompassing emotion I felt especially in the first 5-9 weeks was just overwhelmed. By 8-9 weeks, I had told my family and inner circle of friends and I felt immediately better. Their support and encouragement really helped me shift towards more excitement over fear and stress. It was also stressful for me to keep this huge life thing private, especially when in social situations (aka – after saying you aren’t drinking after a few times, it’s just kind of obvious). I think a lot of this stress and overwhelmingness came from 1) being bombarded with lots of medical info and ‘worst case scenario’ doctor stuff about testing, etc and 2) feeling a little bit like a loner in the mom department. I don’t know a ton of moms/families in the Bay Area and that felt startling and difficult- how was I going to do this?! Thankfully, a lot of those feelings have subsided when I was reminded, over and over, that I have so many supportive and loving people in my life (moms and otherwise) both in the Bay Area and all over and everything was going to be okay. More than okay!

READING: Bringing Up Bébé, Mindful Birthing and allll of the MOTHER articles

WEARING: I still fit into all my pre-pregnancy clothes, but have been wearing less jeans and more flowy dresses/casual leggings + tshirt combo. I don’t really want to purchase a ton of maternity clothes, so going to try to work with what I have for the most part (said while I’m still fairly small and haven’t grown a ginormous belly *yet*) But, I do have my eye on the Storq leggings, jumpsuit and tank dress and I’ll probably get the Madewell maternity jeans too. Any other cool maternity brands/clothes you guys know of/recommend?

FITNESS: I’ve been continuing to work out 5x/week, mostly yoga and Pilates, plus a few SoulCycle classes. Other than making some modifications to different poses/moves, exercising has been pretty much the same since pre-pregnancy. Working out (as always) has been super beneficial both physically and mentally. I know this routine will likely change as my pregnancy progresses/I get much larger, so if any of you have recommendations on pre-natal friendly workouts, send my way!

FOOD AVERSIONS/CRAVINGS: I haven’t really had any aggressive aversions. I miss sushi. I’ve been craving cold and fruity, so have been making a lot of smoothies (but that’s pretty normal for me). I’m also drinking tons of water.

VITAMINS: Rainbow Light Prenatal Vitamins and Silver Fern Probiotic Vitamins (which I’m convinced have really helped clear my acne and help boost my immune system)

Thanks for reading! More photos below – and thanks to Lisha Wang for snapping these photos of us in our apartment!

 

Creative & Cultivate Recap

Posted on: Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Earlier this month, I traveled to NYC with my bestie Aimee to attend Create + Cultivate! C+C is an amazing one-day conference for female creatives and entrepreneurs that happens a few times in a year in different locations, like NYC, LA, Dallas and Palm Springs. The conference covers topics like influencer marketing, branding, promotion and pitching yourself,

It was my first conference I’ve attended on behalf of myself/my own company Lucky Collective and it was total inspiration overload. One of my favorite #fangirl moments was attending a panel with the cutest mom blogger Naomi from Love Taza. We also met Insta-famous dog @toastmeetsworld! 😍😍 Since I work with a lot of brands on influencer partnerships and events, it was also super interesting to see how different brand activations came to life at C+C. More about that is below.

A few favorite brand pop-ups:

Saje Wellness‘ pop-up area allowed you to apply (and reapply…and reapply…like Aimee and I did) different essential oils throughout the day. That energy essential oil was key! 🙏🏻  I have several of their oils and am completely obsessed.

Birchbox had a build-your-own Birchbox station where attendees could add different makeup, hair and skincare products to a box to take home. 💋

Vital Proteins had fancy waters and different drinks, like matcha lattes mixed with their collagen. It was super refreshing and a gorgeous space! I also discovered their new Collagen Beauty Water products and now am obsessed with the Cucumber Aloe one.

Laura Mercier’s makeup station was key – literally Aimee and I were so tired by the afternoon so getting our makeup refreshed made us both definitely look and feel much better. 🙂

La Croix‘s booth was probably the most Instagrammable (look at the pics of their La Croix flower wall!), plus they had epic swag like pins, bananas and cute postcards.

I can never resist wearing a flower crown and loved this MASSIVE one from Urban Stems. Overall, while it was a SUPER long and kind of tiring day overall (networking is hard, y’all!), I’m really glad I went to the conference! It was amazing seeing firsthand everything C+C put together and how well curated the speakers and brand activations were.

Thanks for reading! xx

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