Essential Maternity Basics You’ll Love

It’s true – I’m a creature of habit with the clothing items I love! Especially when I am pregnant, and even more so when I have found the perfect level of comfort! After two pregnancies, I can confirm that these items are my very favorite go-to’s. Most of the items are shown in black but most do come in other colors as well – I just tend to wear a lot of black when pregnant! Black tends to be a bit more slimming while lighter colors and patterns add to the cause. 🙂 All items are linked below, trust me, these are the very best – I wouldn’t steer you wrong!
Aerie Real Me Boybrief Undie
Comfort Slip On Memory Foam Slippers
Surplice Front Jumpsuit
Full Busted Seamless Nursing Bra
Play Real Me High Waisted Legging
Pure Body V-Neck Long Sleeve
Pure Body V-Neck Short Sleeve
Maternity Tank Dress
Maternity 3/4 Sleeve Dress
Ruched Waist Sleep Shorts
Secret Fit Shaping Panty
Jill & Joey Maternity Belt 
Here are some images of me wearing these items over the past 9 months:

I’m so basic 🙂

Which items will be you be grabbing? What am I missing from this list? Let me know which items you try!



That Mom Bod Solution: Shop Pink Blush [+ a giveaway!]

Hi Everyone, Happy Almost Friday! It’s finally feeling like Summer out here on the East Coast – aka less rain and more SUN! I love Summer because everything just feels a bit more relaxed…do you know what I mean? I hope you are all having a fab start to June.

I keep talking on here about the awkward stage of body after baby, the 4th trimester, dressing post-baby, and I’ve finally found a great solution.
Honestly, I think going from not pregnant to pregnant is easier than going from 40+ weeks pregnant to post-baby. At least when you get pregnant it is gradual. When you have a baby, he is out in a matter of hours and then you’re left with…well, the aftermath.
No one talked to me about this before it happened. I’ll spare you all the details – but any stomach muscles you may have had before are now squishy and you are now in a phase called the “4th trimester” in which maternity clothes can be big, and your pre-baby clothes are still tight. I was like telling people to feel my stomach because it’s the weirdest feeling ever. As much as I love new things, seriously, how many sets of clothes do we have to buy?
If you haven’t already heard of Pink Blush, let me introduce you. This brand is an online boutique that specializes in creating affordable, fashionable, beautiful pieces that can transition modern moms from pregnancy to motherhood, and beyond. They have both a maternity and women’s line but honestly, you can transition through all trimesters (1-4) in almost everything on their site, ESPECIALLY the dresses.


Most of their pieces are stretchy, soft, and don’t hug the body in those questionable places you just aren’t ready for the public to see.
I chose this floral gem of a dress in an effort to find a spring/summer piece that could be worn for a nice occasion, but still allow me to feel comfortable. ALSO – it is nursing friendly (hello convenient cross top) and it’s definitely one of the dresses that you can wear during pregnancy as well.
I feel like I could wear this dress to a party and then keep on as my nightgown, but I won’t. Lol!


 I think it’s only fair if you all have the chance to try out Pink Blush as well… So – I’ll be giving away a $50 giftcard to use on!
There are 2 ways to enter:
1.) Enter your email address below to follow my blog (you’ll be the first to get notified of new posts!) & share this post on Facebook with the hashtag #shoppinkblush
2.) Head to my Instagram and follow the rules on today’s post announcing the giveaway.
I’m giving two entry methods, so you can enter from either platform that you prefer. Winner will be chosen 6/7 by 11:59pm EST. 
*You are not eligible to win if you have entered and won a #shoppinkblush giveaway in the last 3 months*


If you love Pink Blush and would like to order, they have free shipping on all U.S. orders. You can also check out their Facebook page for additional deals!
Thanks so much for checking in & good luck in the giveaway. Have an amazing weekend!

💕 Kayla 

Newborn Photography for Beginners: 4 tips + Our Little Bear 

I started researching newborn photography about two days before Calvin arrived. Not being from this area, I had to start from scratch online while looking for a photographer, as opposed to using one of the amazing photographers I know at home in Ohio that I could get a WOM recommendation on. I discovered 1, that this is extremely late in the game to start looking as most people book these sessions months in advance – and 2, holy $$$. I have to say that several months ago, I was still trying to wrap my head around the idea of having a child, let alone taking pics of him.

New Jersey is out of control with cost of living, daycare, services such as photography, and everything in between. I’m not even going to tell you what it would cost here in the Princeton area 😳 Professional newborn photography is amazing, the photos are priceless, and I wanted them badly, but I decided I just wasn’t willing to fork over several months of (NJ priced) rent to have these photos done right away. We did purchase the photos the hospital offers to take, as they are extremely cost effective and conveniently done, just not the same quality as a boutique photographer.

We are going home later this Spring and I hope to use a local photographer in Ohio when he is just a couple months old. 😊 Let me know if anyone has a solid recommendation!

*Insert brilliant idea to try this on my own here*

Once I accepted that we would have to wait on pics of our little angel, I started doing some research (mostly high quality pinteresting) on how to take photos on my own. Call me cheap, but I’d like to use the word resourceful instead! Being someone who knows nothing about photography (I didn’t even take photo 101 in HS), here are the 4 easiest & most important steps I discovered and applied:

1.) Make sure baby is content – I recommend doing this right after a feeding. Calvin is either out like a light after eating, or pretty awake and content. Either way you’ll need a happy baby I order to pose how you’d like and get still shots. A well-fed baby will pretty much let you do whatever.

2.) Make or find a back drop/setting – for my photos I took a large blanket from Pier 1 and laid over a boppy pillow. This way baby was in a comfortable position and blanket covered nearby surroundings. You can really take any piece of material and fully cover the item in which you are placing baby.

3.) Find natural light – This is key! You’ll need a lot less editing if you are able to use the natural light coming in through a door or window. This light shouldn’t necessarily be direct sunlight, as you don’t want over exposure. Is that the right term?!

4.) Use a camera you are comfortable with – I used a Nikon Cool Pix L120, which I am still trying to figure out, but honestly if you do a good job with iPhone, that would work as well. It doesn’t have to be fancy. iPhone actually has a decent quality camera (8mp, auto focus, auto image stabilization, etc) with minimal complicated settings and is what I use/prefer 95% of the time. Photogs, don’t judge me! Gotta give my dad a shout out here – he takes some amazing photos and had only an iPhone 4 until just recently. Check him out on IG here.

Below is my attempt at in-home newborn photography with our Little Bear:


Blanket – the one I used is sold out, but here are several other Pier1 options.


Baby Hat  – the one Cal is wearing is from Gymboree, but here is an option from Carters.

So how did they turn out? Let me know what you think! We personally believe Calvin could make anyone’s mediocre photography skills look professional 💙

Thanks for reading!

❤ Kayla



My top 10 ‘WTF’ Pregnancy Moments 

You all have followed me along this entire pregnancy journey and I can’t thank you enough for all your support, advice, and sweet comments. While being away from friends and family during the biggest change in our lives, I have found this blog to be an outlet for getting thoughts on ‘paper’ and staying connected through words. Thank you for continuing to read, as our real journey is only just beginning.

I have to preface this post by saying these past 10 months have actually been amazing. For the most part, I have gotten very lucky — no morning sickness, no constipation (TMI), good test results (there are a lot of them), and an active baby I can feel moving around constantly (which is so cool.) I’ve been able to keep working, and except for some restrictions, basically resume my normal life, while growing a human! Cray.

Outside of this, there have definitely been situations where I’m literally thinking “WTF!? No one taught me this!” Where was the college course on preggo 101? Maybe I’ll invent it. Although it would probably frighten everyone. I thought it would be entertaining to share my top 10 ‘WTF’ Pregnancy Experiences for some LoLs:

Three words: Tums. On. Repeat.

If you’re lucky enough to experience the joys of pregnancy heartburn, it literally feels like your throat is on fire. How am I supposed to drink my 1 cup of coffee each morning when it’s on the verge of coming back up? Skipping the caffeine in not an option in order to function as a normal person in society. There were multiple times I had to RUN to the bottle of chalky tablets– pop those guys like candy! If you were wondering, the generic brand doesn’t taste the same as actual tums so choose wisely. They say it means your baby will have a lot of hair (??) so we’ll see if that’s true here soon.

The assembly of baby gear.

You should’ve seen our faces when we poured out the contents of pieces that ultimately made up our baby swing. They say whatever happens in labor stays in the delivery room. It should be, whatever happens while putting furniture together, stays in that moment of when you’re putting furniture together. It’s like a lose, lose, because you can’t do it alone, but you also may not have a SO after, if you do it together. I’m being dramatic …but seriously, why so many pieces? Teamwork makes the dream work, baby.


Why am I sweating? 

I had to literally leave work early one day because I was so hot and uncomfortable in my sweater and jeans. I almost cried. Then there was the time at the mall I had to take a break just to unzip my boots and let my leggies breathe. I don’t mind sweating, when I’m supposed to be sweating – say, during a workout, but when you’re sweating from normal, every day activies – sick. There have also been multiple times in the night where I’ve woken up in a full-on hot flash and had to change my clothes. This babe must be packin’ a lottt of body heat.

Why am I in the RR again?

If baby is on the bladder, you basically have to go again before you can exit the stall, wash your hands, check your hair, and get out of there. It would’ve been really convenient if I could just just bring my laptop in there with me. Can you imagine? I can’t think of a more accurate depiction than the below:


Body Pains

When I say body pains, I’m mostly talking about lower half pains. I know I talked about this in a previous post, but there are times when it feels like your pelvic bone is just in shambles. Walking, putting weight on one leg, changing sleeping positions are all an uncomfy no-go…and the grand entrance into the world hasn’t even happened yet 😅

Oh, look, more cellulite 

This one was immediate…6 weeks in and I’m finding cellulite in places I didn’t know existed. All the muscle I had worked so long for, seemed to disappear. Craig says this one isn’t true but I know he’s just being nice.  Maybe if I spent less time taking #bumpdate pics, I wouldn’t have this problem. Thank god my largest months have been in the winter and I can sorta hide that ‘ish. Mom says this is a product of motherhood. Hopefully it’s just a product of pregnancy and I can combat post birth.

Extreme hunger.

In trimester 3, you literally can’t get un-hungry. Then when you finally do, you’re stuffed and not feeling so well. There’s pretty much no happy medium. And unfortunately, my go-to of eating daily salads, didn’t do the trick. *Insert sandwiches, bagels, wraps, cereals, tacos, or anything that included carbs, to help fill my growing belly*

3am anxiety and insomnia. 

First you are waking up to go to the RR, then before you can get back to sleep, you are thinking of so many ridiculous scenarios that haven’t even happened yet. What do I do when he’s teething and he won’t sleep and so I’m up all night and I have to go to work in the morning and I’m too tired to function and I want to leave but I can’t because I have meetings and responsibilities and then this goes on for months and I never sleep or function well again until every tooth grows in? I know these challenges will actually happen, but let’s take it one day at a time, sista.

Maternity Leave Office Preparation

I know I’ve talked about the paperwork – but what about the actual leave? Holy Moly. For those of you who work in a fast paced office environment, think of how hard it is planning to be out for a 1 week vacation. Now times that by 12. I’ve been doing a brain dump on my back-ups for a month now. It’ll be so weird and a big change of pace to be OOO for 12 weeks, but a great time to spend with baby.

Side Sleeping

I’ll never understand why people voluntarily sleep on their side. It legit feels like your arm and shoulder are going to fall off in the morning, and you have to make sure to switch sides every so often. This doesn’t sound like a big issue, but when you literally feel like a beached whale when trying to change positions, it poses a big challenge. I’ve caught myself, even in the late stages of pregnancy, trying to sleep on my stomach. K Kayla, let’s try not to squish baby.

Here are some of my fave snapshots from the past 20 weeks 🙂

This will likely be my last post before birth (for real this time.) I thought I might be sharing my birthday (2/4) but he decided he wants his own day 😊 I hope you all are having a great start to February and make some vday plans with the ones you ❤️ .

💕 Kayla

Wrap Coats = Functional + Fashionable

So up until this point I’ve been trying to cut it with a mid-weight (at best) maternity coat for the cold weather, and I pretty much just freeze my ass off every morning until my car warms up. I’m at such an awkward phase where it’s like, do I buy a full-on maternity winter coat? Or do I suck it up and wear the cloth maternity “pea coat” since I’ll only be pregnant for a few more weeks? (if that.)  First world problems, right? With talks all week of the snowstorm hitting the east coast (we ended up getting ~20 inches), I figured it was time to find a better solution…wrap coats! I came across this Vera Wang style at Nordstrom Rack and couldn’t pass up. So pretty, and so functional for my current situation.





I’m not usually a “red” or “burgundy” girl, as I usually stick to black & brown, but I thought I’d mix it up. This coat was originally $475, on sale for $135 –gotta love the rack! It’s a size Medium, and is not a maternity style. Since you can tie these type of coats and technically adjust to your size, I’ll be able to wear post-baby, which helped to warrant my purchase. Because I can no longer find this style online for you guys, I’ve linked my favorite alternatives below:

Calvin Klein Shawl Collar Wrap Coat – Macy’s

Tahari Wool Blend Belted Wrap – Nordstrom

DVF Leopard Wrap Coat – Nordstrom Rack

Tahari Envelope Collar Wrap Coat – Lord & Taylor

My favorite options all seem to be from Tahari, so feel free to do a good old google search for this brand.


Here are the deets to my other accessories:

Necklace – I’m obsessed with anything black & gold– especially for jewelry.

Gloves – The actual gloves I’m wearing are from Old Navy, but are no longer available. Remember, animal print is a neutral and you can wear with anything 🙂

Boots – The actual boots I am wearing are honestly from Kohl’s like 3 years ago, but are still my favorite in terms of looks. I also really like the Sorel style, I’ve linked here.

Lipstick – Available at Ulta, or any other drug store.

Doesn’t this make you think, “Little Red Riding Hood?”

I’d love to hear all your thoughts on this look. Also, what is your favorite winter accessory? Anything I’m totally missing out on?!

I am 38 weeks this week, so they’re telling me baby could come at any time. I’ll make sure to let you all know when we decides to make his appearance!

Thanks for reading ❤


One Month Out – Final Preparations 

We’ve officially hit the one month mark! How did this happen? It feels like I was just sitting on the beach with my friend Laura telling her I think I might be pregnant. She didn’t believe me until at least 20 weeks, btw. A lot of friends and family having been asking if we’re ready and how we’re feeling, so I decided to give ya’ll a thorough virtual update.

One second I feel like we’re ready and the next I’m having a mild panic attack thinking of last minute details I need to perfect. This past week I was telling Craig how much we need to do this weekend and he says, “like what?” Cue Krazy Kayla Pregnancy Rampage answer of, “WHY ARE YOU ACTING LIKE WE’RE READY?” You can tell who the calm one is in the relationship…so thankful for his patience. I do feel as if I have several weeks left, but I know that realistically we should be prepared for this party to start any day now.

I spend all week working and preparing  for my 12 week office absence, so we really try to focus on us and baby prep on the weekends. I have to say we did a good job at starting early, and spacing out the long list of tasks (mostly fun & exciting) that come with preparing for baby #1. It also helps that we have extremely supportive friends & families that can’t wait for the little guy to arrive.

I know that this info is probably super irrelevant for my friends without kids but I know so many other mamas-to-be and friends who will be in this position soon. There are so. many. things. to. do. and I want to share what my reality has been over the past couple of weeks, leading into this final month. Current Moms, please tell me I’m on the right track 😊

Mental Preparation

I know I’ve talked in the past about how mentally tough this journey has been, but I think staying mindful and remembering what matters most, goes a long way during pregnancy. I’ve decided to take anything I read (including articles like this post) or advice I receive with a grain of salt — focus on you and your baby, in an effort to stay grounded. It is an on-going process and something I have had to remind myself of often. During this time, keeping everyone in both your personal and professional life happy, is literally impossible (I know from experience in trying) and should not be #1 priority. I’ve been most content when I stay in the present and envision only positive thoughts and plans for my families future. *insert tranquil yoga setting here*


Paparazzi Preparation 

I’m getting so excited to see our lil’ man and I know I’m going to be a crazy person with capturing every moment. Both of our families won’t really be able to get to the hospital right away or be around for every milestone, so we’re going to try and capture as much as we can. I got a super nice Nikon camera for Christmas a few years ago and have only used it a few times. My iPhone is so convenient for taking pics but I’m constantly having to delete apps, emails, and photos for more storage. I know there are apps, clouds, and storage mechanisms to help with this, but I finally have a reason to use this camera, and learn some photog skills. I couldn’t find any of the accessories so I jumped on Amazon to order batteries, USB cable, and an extra memory card. I’ll say it again, thank the lord for online shopping. Now we’re in business. Apologies in advance.


Hospital Stay Preparation 

I have had a half-packed hospital bag ready for some time now, but am finally finishing up, and just started a baby bag. I am using a rolling carry-on size suitcase for my things, and the diaper bag for Baby C. I feel like I’ll be adding items up until we go to the hospital, so I’ll probably end up over packing, per usual. Craig is in charge of snacks and drinks for after delivery. Oh, and his clothes/personal belongings. And taking care of me and the beebs.

Car Seat Preparation 

We’ve had our car seat for at least a month but finally installed it in the car this past weekend. Then we went to McDonald’s (clearly being easy on myself this month) and pretended we were driving around with another human being in our car. Apparently 90% of people install the car seat incorrectly, so they require parents to get them checked at the local fire or police department. It was pretty intuitive, but we plan on doing this at the end of the month, when they are holding the next session. We are also installing an additional base in Craig’s car, so we don’t have to change when we change cars.


Maternity Leave Preparation

There is a lot of paperwork to fill out and acronyms to learn when preparing for maternity (and paternity) leave…FMLA, STD, FLI, etc. I started this convo with HR several months ago and just got my FMLA approval in the mail this week. Although I’m a beginner, my best advice is leave time to learn the ins & outs, utilize experts (HR & accounting) and make the decision that is best for your family, regarding leave. Everyone holds a different financial and professional status.

Baby Gear Preparation 

Onesies, blankets, books, everywhere! Below are some of the latest larger items that we’ve gotten ready. I’ll probably let you guys know down the road how we ended up liking these items but for now here is what we decided on:

  • Place for baby to sleep in the first 0-3 months – We decided on a Graco Pack n’ Play Travel Lite for our room. If you purchase from this link, you get a $40 Buy Buy Baby gift card with purchase. It’s small, perfect for traveling, and has a raised bassinet that vibrates for sleeping.
  • Graco Glider with Ottoman– for nursery and feeding. We decided on a neutral cream color with cherry wood to match the nursery furniture.

  • Breast Pump (ugh, TMI)- still not to sure what I’m looking at, but I was able to get this Medela Starter Set through insurance for free. Surprisingly, it came within 2-3 business days.
  • Fisher Price Rock ‘n Play for when Baby C is just straight chillen. I’ve heard nothing but good things about this item. PS – my Mom & I found this basically new (and certified sterilized) at a gently used store for half the price.

  • Urbini Omni-Plus Stroller – this goes with our car seat to make it the complete travel system. I love the heather gray color and bassinet option.

Knowledge Prep 

I’ve done a lot of reading, studying, and asking questions, but my actual plan is to learn by doing. I guess you could call it wingin’ it. I know there will be instances where I have no idea what to do, but for the most part I know I will love him, be obsessed with him, and the motherly instinct will kick in. Also, reallyyy banking on years and years of babysitting paying off for me here. My biggest fear is the actual time when I am going into labor…we took 3 birthing classes to prepare for that as much as possible, but I truly don’t know what to expect. I envision us being excited and freaking out. I’ve been told to not have too many expectations, as it will always go differently than planned. Send positive vibes our way!

And just because you all are amazing, I’m going to leave my readers with a sneak peak at his initials because we finally made a decision … 

I hope everyone is off to a great 2016 – I have a post coming up later this week with some special mama guests…I’m so excited for everyone to hear from these seriously credible babes. 💋

PS – I’ve been on a “Revenge” Netflix binge for the past week but am already getting sick of Emily Thorne. I need some recos for this final month & maternity leave!

Talk soon!

💕 Kayla

Floppy Hats & Farmers Markets 

Saturday we decided to venture out to check out a local Farmers Market and finish some Christmas shopping. It was also very cold and windy so it’s actually starting to feel like December now! I wore my comfiest, warmest sweater and a floppy hat, which I’m loving for the season. When first buying this hat, I thought “where the hell am I going to wear this?” It was perfect for today and actually stopped my hair from blowing everywhere. If you’re anything like me, there are items you’ve bought in the past and then they just sit in your closet. If there’s a fashion statement piece you have bought and not yet worn, just do it. And own it. And wear, wherever you want! I now own floppy hats in both black and tan (my favorite neutrals), and can’t wait to wear both more often in the upcoming weeks.





📷 : C. Cantor — isn’t he kinda good?

I recently re-discovered H&M, which is where I found both this wool hat and cowl neck sweater (which I can’t for the life of me, find online.) I’ve linked an alternative here. They have a maternity section, which you wouldn’t expect, and I’ve just been browsing some really cute, affordable pieces and accessories there lately. Leggings worn here are from Gap, and booties are from Old Navy. By the way, I’m always a believer that leggings are pants, esp when preg. To get this look just pair a long sweater of your choice, basic leggings, booties, and pick a hat! Here are some of my other favorite options:

We first went to the Trenton Farmers Market, which isn’t the most glamorous place I’ve ever been, but it was festive and any weekend activity that gets me up and walking is 👌 I love Farmers Markets because everything is always fresh, homemade or local. We did find some good buys (organic peanut butter, apple butter, and strawberry jam) at the “Amish Country Store.” Can you tell we like butter? Note to self: bring cash to the Amish Country Store next time. Credit card machine + the Amish = struggle city.



After this we had dinner at the most romantic spot in town…TGI Fridays. Jk, we had a gift card, and who doesn’t love free food? Coincidentally, this is the Fridays we went to on our first trip out to NJ, where we decided which apartment we were going to lease over drinks. Today, we found ourselves having serious talks on choosing a baby name…not over drinks. I guess you could say only our most important convos are held at the fancy establishment of TGIF.

From there we did some shopping at my fave mall in town (called Market Fair) and bought some last minute gifts. We are officially done with our holiday shopping! 🎁

Sunday I am doing prenatal yoga, getting a peppermint mocha from the bux, getting a manicure, and having friends over to our place for football, relaxing, and homemade chili! What are you all up to on the last weekend before the Christmas craziness?

Thanks for checking in! 💕