Diaper Bags for the Cool Mom {Part 2!}

Hey mamas! How are we!? Anyone getting winter depression/anxious from being cooped up in this horrid weather!? It’s a thing… LOL I certainly am! I was just in CA for 5 days and came back to a blizzard – not exactly my idea of enjoyable BUT I am glad to be back with my guys! Hopefully only 6ish more weeks left of winter…we can so do it!!

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Last year I posted a list of “diaper bags for the cool mom” and got a great response on the suggestions, so here I am to do part 2! I’ve tried a ton of diaper bags and definitely prefer the backpack style OR a bag that can convert to both an over the shoulder and a backpack. You already have enough things to carry as a Mom – your diaper bag should make your life easier and allow you to be hands free.

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I see posts daily on Facebook or in the groups I’m apart of where Moms are constantly asking for diaper bag suggestions. Why is a diaper bag so important? WELL – once you become a mom, your diaper bag is essentially your purse. It’s your sanity for getting from place to place in a prepared manner. No more designer or cute handbags being used on a daily basis – unless you have 3 hands to carry both, which you don’t. Your diaper bag is now your fashion identity (I wish I was kidding!) Don’t feel like your diaper bag needs to be juvenile or have puppy print and hearts on it because it is being used for your child. You can see below that I am a huge fan of the classy neutrals/solids only, in the bags I carry. I also 100% think it is worth investing in a great diaper bag – you will use it DAILY and you need to feel like it’s comfortable, efficient, easy to carry, and easy to pack. Without further ado, here are my 2018 recos:
Skip Hop Greenwich Simply Chic

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Fawn Design Backpack

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Skip Hop Greenwich Simply Chic Diaper Tote

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JJ Cole Backpack Diaper Bag

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Freshly Picked Convertible Diaper Backpack

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Highbury Hill Diaper Backpack

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Honest City Backpack

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Itzy Ritzy® Backpack Diaper Bag

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JJ Cole Arrington Tote Diaper Bag

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Skip Hop Suite 6 Piece Backpack

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The bag I am using in these photos is the Fawn Design original in PLUM. Unfortunately the plum is SOLD OUT right now 😦 but it does come in 4 additional colors. I really love that this bag is spacious and can convert from an over the shoulder, to a cross body, to a backpack.
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Does anyone have one of these bags? I’d love to hear how you like it! If anyone purchases a bag above, please let me know – would also love to see a photo! Hope this helps!

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Rompin’ Around {in Rose & Wesley}

So you may be wondering why I am writing and sharing a red, white & blue themed post and outfit for Calvin approximately 3 weeks after the 4th of July …. well this Mommy is just a littttle behind on blogging but we’re going with it. Does anyone else feel like life is running them over? JK, that’s an exaggeration. Kinda. Calvin sure looks like he is ALWAYS proud to be an American anyways:)
I had the pleasure of working with Mandi from Rose & Wesley – the cutest online boutique where  all of the items are handmade and the tagline is “Making Playtime Beautiful.” She was so sweet and sent me this hand sewn romper for Calvin. So. cute.
Cal is wear the LIAM romper which is so so soft and comfy for an active little boy. The romper is stretchy so it slips right on from the bottom up.  I can’t wait to get more for him – just like I love a good “momper”, they also work for the babes.
|Hat is from Jack and Winn|Shoes are from Converse |
Use code KGLOVES for 15% any order at Rose & Wesley!

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My Summer Post Recap: All things Baby, Back to Work, Engagement, Re-branding & Travels!

It’s been a summer for the books! So much growing, traveling, fun & so many firsts in our life! As I was rounding these up, I went back to re-read some of my posts – I need to take some of my OWN advice and remember why I wrote the things that I did.
The post that hit me the hardest was “The 5th Trimester: Learning to Balance Time & Give yourself a Break.” This post is very near and dear to my heart – definitely the most honest words I’ve written to date. If you are a working mom, or will be…check it out!
The most exciting thing that happened personally this summer, is that Craig and I got engaged! We are so official now!
The most exciting thing that happened blog wise, is that I re-branded from “Kayla Marie” to “Running with Strollers.” I finally found my niche and can’t wait to keep writing & bring great content to all my readers!
Here is a recap of this summer’s posts. I have re-linked for easy reading if you may have missed one in the craziness that summer can bring 🙂
Calvin Turns 4 Months + The challenges & rewards during this time 
Back to Work! + My Working Mommy Essentials
The 5th Trimester: Learning to Give Yourself A Break
*My favorite & most honest post of the Summer <3*
My Favorite Way to Order Prescription Glasses + Pics of this Baby Bear!
4th of July Inspired Family Photos
We got engaged! + Our Favorite Vacation Photos 
Calvin turns 5 Months + How Having a Baby Changes Your Priorities
Our Day Trip to NYC + Getting Out of your Comfort Zone 
Mom goes to Nashville + Increasing Your Happiness + How to wear Shorts & Boots
*Blog Re-Brand!!*
Flying with an Infant + Travel Necessities! 
Calvin turns 6 Months + Remembering to Live in the Moment 
Calvin Tries the MamaRoo!
Shirt Dresses: Perfect for the Transition to Fall
Here’s to a new season, more firsts, and finishing out 2016 strong.
So much love for all of you! ❤

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Increasing Happiness: How you Think about Current Life Situations & Apply a Shift (+ boots & shorts style inspo)

Happy Weekend!!! We are in NJ again this weekend, pretty much in chill-ax mode before we are traveling again next week!
Can I be transparent and say that pretty much everything about the past 3 months has been challenging and life changing? It has forced me to be intentional with my thoughts and seek out information that will allow me to grow instead of shrink down into the pit of #stress.
I had a conversation recently with a co-worker and they were asking me what I wanted and made the comment that they wanted me to “be happy.” It was interesting to stop and think about this – because I haven’t actually thought about me, my goals, my future… in a very long time. I am constantly thinking about what will make Calvin happy, what will make my family happy, what will make my co-workers/team members happy, what will make my clients @work happy. Although it’s true that if all of those individuals are happy, so am I, but I also got to thinking about what makes ME happy and how can I have more of that in my life?
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Sometimes it’s the little things, right? Like a cup of coffee in the morning, getting an extra hr of sleep on the weekend, a new lipstick shade, or the feeling when you can tell fall is on its way.
But most of the time in the midst of busy days, weeks, long days and long nights, true happiness takes effort and a commitment to saying, “I’m going to remain positive, no matter what is thrown my way today.” Unfortunately, it does take effort to count your blessings and remember how amazing your life truly is. The realization of this comes from the self-awareness of NOT remaining as positive as I could when challenges or tough situations have come my way in the past.
I also recently listened to a podcast and it was talking about and listing activities that are PROVEN to increase happiness on one’s life. Some examples were silently meditating, journaling each night, committing to 5 random acts of kindness each week, and taking brisk walks 3x a week. While I’m sure these are proven to increase happiness, I couldn’t really relate. Can you imagine me silently meditating each morning in addition to feeding & changing another human being, getting myself ready and commuting to work all before 830am? As a super busy working mom, I’m not in a spot where I can ADD things to my life. Yes I want to achieve ultimate happiness and overcome stress, but I feel like there’s things I’m already doing, that when viewed with a different mindset, could really change my outlook on love, life, and happiness.

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These are some every day realities that could (and often do) weigh on me and prevent me from feeling fully accomplished, fulfilled, and happy. When I change my mindset and develop a PMA (positive mental attitude) these situations are suddenly a blessing instead of a burden:
Situation: Spending weekdays at work, while others get to stay at home with their babes
Shift: You are a strong, hard working, ambitious mom who gets to go to a great job and make money for her family. This job allows you to give your family things and do things together you might not be able to without your income. Your family will look up to you for the things you have accomplished professionally and the success you were able to achieve while balancing both.
You have a long commute
This is YOUR time – time to think, fill your brain with positive info via podcasts or listen to music. Take a deep breath, think your thoughts, and enjoy your cup up coffee the whole way there.
Situation: You’re freaking tired
Solution: Stop and get that damn iced latte if you want it. You deserve it. DUH.
Situation: You don’t have enough time to workout so you’re feeling down on yourself and your body image
Solution: I can’t say we’ll ever have more time, but I’ve been told that if you have a small baby, don’t fret on this. This stage of your life is so quick and fleeting, enjoy it spending time doing what needs to be done (dishes, dinner, baby cuddles, breastfeeding, etc.) Another thing I’ve thought about on this topic…if you don’t have time to workout, you DO have time to eat and drink water (or else you wouldn’t be alive), so make some healthy swaps and it could take some of the stress off of fitting exercise in your schedule.
 Situation: You’re worried about your quality time with your significant other 
Solution: Even being aware of this is key! Keep it top of mind and talk about how you can solve for it. It could be as simple as making sure you eat dinner together, talking about your day each night, or committing to going to bed at the same time each night.
Have you thought lately about what makes you happy? What are your “situations” and “solutions?” How do you view happiness and make sure you are intentional with your thoughts? Any ideas or recos!? Seriously need to hear 🙂

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 *Shop my look*
Black Fringe Boots 
Black MK Watch
White Shorts
Flannel Shirt
Choker
Tank – Similar
More boots/shorts inspo: for when you still want to summer (shorts) but you’re ready for fall (boots!) Love this trend.
Have a great weekend, all!!

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{Month 6} & Remembering to Live in the Moment

It has officially been half a year since Calvin has come into our lives. It’s actually quite terrifying how quickly half a year has gone. On one hand we’ve grown and learned so much, on the other, I feel like I blacked out, and here we are! I’m still trying to find ways to slow down time but I’ve also just realized we have to enjoy each day fully – there is no time to waste. People all the time stop us and say, “enjoy it” or “don’t blink” and I can completely understand why they make those comments. It’s actually really cool to feel like you’re right in the moment you are supposed to be in. No more waiting for other things to happen before you can start your life!

It really is so tough to truly live in the moment every single day – especially when you always want Monday to be Friday, or 8:30am to be 5:00pm. Since weekdays make up over 70% of each year, I’m trying to remind myself to fully enjoy these days as well. The little time at night I get to spend with my family on Monday-Friday is so valuable. I think this is why I often feel like I ONLY have time for work & baby in my life. When I’m not at work, I want to be spending every second with Calvin and Craig. I’m going to make a larger effort to change my mindset on “working for the weekend.” Although the weekends are so so fun with my guys, so is every other day of the week. Here’s to working hard, but also remembering what is most important when the going gets tough. This is the true struggle of every working mom, but something I am slowly learning to overcome.

Alright, onto the little guy 6 month updates. 

Calvin is starting to look and act like such a little boy. Just when we don’t think he can get any cuter, or we can love him any more – it happens! You can tell from these pics that he is getting to be much more mobile. He can’t crawl yet, but he can roll slide and scoot anywhere he’d like. It was almost impossible to get him to “sit” still in his chair. He’s such a happy baby and so chill (except when he’s hungry or super tired.)

^he destroyed this sticker about 5 seconds later
^he looks like a baby gorilla here LOL

Our biggest milestones this month

  • Weight: 18lbs, 3oz (70%) | Height: 27in (77%) | Head: 17.75in (88%)

  • Calvin has had a blocked tear duct in his left eye since he was born, which prohibits his eye from draining correctly. We were hoping that it would open on its own but it hasn’t, so we have to go to the eye dr to figure out next steps, this month. We don’t want Calvin to be known as the kid with the crusty eye 😜
  • Mom went away for a full weekend & Calvin stayed with dad for 2 nights/3 days #boysweekend
  • Mom is still breast feeding & Calvin is also officially eating all kinds of baby foods – rice cereal, apples, pears, bananas, mango, carrots, peas, sweet potatoes – we have yet to find a food he doesn’t like!

  • Calvin took his first plane ride which I wrote about here.
  • Calvin is still not sleeping through the night – in fact the past week was pretty rough. He will wake up for about an hour anytime between 2-4 and then he is up super early, sometimes again at 5am. He will usually fall back asleep but only if I hold him or he lays with me. Not a habit I want to be creating, but this mama really doesn’t care when she needs just a bit more sleep in the mornings!
Oh, I got told I look like a mom for the first time at work a few weeks ago, haha! I came to work on a Friday super casual, with my hair in a Mom bun, which is what must have given me away. Nothin’ wrong with living up to a stereotype!

I’ll be writing here soon about “leaving” Cal for the first time and our mindset on taking baby into the big city (NYC.)
I also wanted to remind you all that there is only a few more days to save $70 on the MamaRoo in wrote about last week & enter the sweepstakes to win ALL the 4moms products + a 2016 Honda Pilot!

Who else has a baby around Calvin’s age? What are they up to? What are the biggest milestones you’ve experienced? I love talking to you all about your babes, so let me know! I hope everyone has a great week – we’re already in the last full week of August!
Talk soon!

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Busy Mommin’ with the @4moms mamaRoo

It’s official, a tiny human has taken over our living space and it suddenly looks like the apparatus set-up at the gymnastics dome in Rio – a swing, a bassinet, a play mat, a bouncer, toys, bibs, socks, and last but not least – the 4moms mamaRoo infant seat. After working all day, I’d LOVE to hold and play with Calvin for the rest of the night (let’s be honest – some nights I do), but it’s just not always physically possible. Unfortunately, there is so much still we still have to accomplish in the 4-5 hours we have in the evening.
Outside of 6 months being an extremely CUTE phase, it just me or is 6 months kind of an awkward stage developmentally? He is super active but can’t sit or stand up on his own so he’s just 18-19 lbs of crazy and all over the place – the only options are holding him or having a seat hold & entertain him. I do not like picking up Calvin from daycare where he is in a bouncer, just to put him down again at home: insert mom guilt here. Fortunately, having a great seat that will hold, soothe, and entertain Calvin has been key at this phase and he absolutely loves the MamaRoo. I don’t feel bad letting him chill in this seat when I know he’s having a great time. He is obsessed with the balls on the mobile and the calming motion of the seat. This child needs all the ‘calm’ he can get!
Our favorite features of the mamaRoo Infant Seat:
5 motion settings
The hanging mobile with removable stuffed toys
USB plug-in with built in speakers
5 other optional sounds
Can hold up to 25 lbs
Lightweight/movable
Adjustable seat position – recline or straight up
Machine washable seat cover
Easy (seriously!) set up
Downloadable 4moms app – allows you to control the motion, speed, sound and volume remotely

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I will say that the 4moms products are a bit more expensive than the fisher-price or other infant seats, but I honestly think these are the types of products that are worth investing in, especially if your baby is happy. I like to spend less on clothes that they will outgrow in just a few weeks, and more on products that you can use and re-use for months, or with baby #2, #3, etc. Moms to be – you can also register for these items and someone can gift them to you 🙂
For more information on @4moms products (strollers, bathtubs, infant seats, highchairs, play yards) you can visit their product page  or sign up for the @4moms email subscription here..

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Does anyone else have a @4moms product? Do you love? Which 4moms product should I try next??
Talk to you all soon – hope you are having a fab week!
❤ Kayla

Flying with an Infant + Travel Necessities

Hello, August!
Remember at the beginning of the summer when I said exciting things are coming? Well it is officially the month they are happening! Stay tuned in the coming weeks for changes, upgrades, and of course more posts on my site 😁
We are home from our first trip and we made it back in one sleepy piece – barely! Traveling with an ~18 lb infant for the first time alone…let’s just mark it as a challenge I’ve now overcome. And now I have stronger arm muscles to show for it! When we got home, Calvin and I both slept for hours because we were so freakin’ exhausted from the whole week.
image^^us @ home in Mason, OH
I don’t have a ton of great advice and I am certainly NO expert on traveling with an infant, but I can share my experience and offer some suggestions – what worked, what didn’t, and necessities I believe you need. Traveling is pretty difficult and strenuous with no baby, so adding a little human, just makes it a bit more complicated. It’s certainly do-able and no reason to shy away from traveling, but with some advice and great products, it can be a much more smooth ride.
download^I held Calvin on the flight but decided to pose him for a pic in my seat before take-off
 Key Notes & Travel Necessities
*you can click on images to shop the item*
Drop-off
 If you don’t have someone going with you, you’ll need help getting all of your stuff from the car to the check-in. Some airports have helpers with carts, other’s don’t. Cincinnati had no one to help, so my Mom took a chance at leaving her car at the departure drop off. Once you are at the desk, you can check bags and car seat for free so all you will have left is baby and carry-on bag.
Car Seat Check
 You can check your infant seat + base for free. I suggest buying a travel tote for protection. The BRICA is technically for a “real” size car seat that you don’t usually take in and out of the car, but the infant seat and base fit right in there. Now we don’t have to buy another tote when we move up to the toddler car seat.
BRICA Cover Guard Car Seat Travel Tote

Breast Milk/Formula:
You can take pre-made bottles through security with no issues. They will pull the milk off to the side to check the liquids. Don’t worry, they don’t open the bottles, they just place them in some special machine. If the milk is frozen, it won’t need checked. I was super nervous about this step but we made it through with no problems and then did a happy dance with Calvin (literally) when there were no issues! I highly suggest bringing a few bottles with you, as the airport and airplane are not nursing friendly at all. Plus, there are people everywhere. Calvin didn’t seem to have an issue with the pressure, but they do say to feed your baby on take-off and landing if you are worried about their little ears. I tried nursing Calvin on the way and he was kicking the large man to my left and hitting his head on the plastic wall to the right – not exactly comfortable for baby or airplane neighbor, lol! Good times.
JJ Cole Insulated Bottle Bag

(we use this insulated bag every day for day care as well)
Baby Wearing vs. Stroller
 I keep going back and forth on this, and which one is better. I wore Calvin in his BABYBJORN carrier because I didn’t want to worry about a stroller. I think this would be just fine, and the best option, if you have someone else with you. Since I had no one with me, I felt like I needed more hands. Without a stroller, you literally have nowhere else to set baby while you are taking carrier off for the plane, restroom, etc. I wasn’t about to hand him to a stranger to hold, or lay him on a seat that he’d easily roll off of, so it was extremely difficult. Basically, you better be ready to hold your pee if you don’t bring a stroller. If you are with someone, you can just hand the baby to them and it would be much easier. So, if you are traveling alone, I would highly suggest a stroller, as you can check it at the gate for free.
BABYBJORN Baby Carrier One
Carry-On
Don’t try to bring a purse and a diaper bag, just combine the two – you already do it every other day, anyways! Invest in a great back-pack diaper bag, especially for traveling. Never thought I’d say this, but it really is NOT about being cute at this point – it’s about successfully getting you and your baby where you need to go! Craig got a Columbia Backpack at our baby shower and it was great for the purpose of traveling – sturdy, comfy straps, and coming with a changing pad and insulated side pocket.
Columbia Summit Rush Backpack Diaper Bag

Distractions
Make sure to bring toys and a pacifier (if you use one) for the plane. If you are holding your infant, they are going to need a distraction, as there is no where else for them to go. Calvin is obsessed with crinkle books, or anything that has that feel. Not only do you need distractions, but everything you bring should be attachable. You will drop things a million times, but if you have toys that can attach to your bag and a paci that can attach to their outfit, it might save you a few times of bending down to pick things up, burning leg muscles and minimize sweating. 😅
Sassy Go-Go Attachable Elephant Book
Pacifier Clip by Honeyed

image^^Calvin in his crib @Grandma’simage^^Calvin learning about selfies with Grandpa
The hardest part about traveling alone was that we were away from Craig for a full week which was super weird for all of us! Thankfully our trips for the rest of the year are all together.  We are traveling again with the bebe in just 4 short weeks. We are going back to Cincinnati but for my best friend’s wedding – not for work – which will also be a bit more exciting. Not that going on a work trip isn’t exhilarating 🙂 I’ll let you guys know how much different traveling is with help!
Any more tips/tricks I should know? I’ve already had a few friends with babies ask me questions, so let me know what you want to know!
Talk soon!
❤ Kayla

 

Ordering Prescription Glasses Online [aka save money & look smart]

You guys – how is it already the last week in July? I seriously feel like Summer just started! Time sure flies when there’s not enough hours in the day….I mean, time sure flies when you’re having fun. 😜
Calvin and I ventured to Cincinnati this past weekend. I’m here for work and decided to come in early to visit family and co-workers in this office. I posted this weekend on instagram, asking for advice, since it would be his first flight, and my first time traveling solo with him. Thanks so much to everyone who wrote to me – so sweet and helpful! I’m usually super positive but not going to lie, it was actually more hectic than I even thought it would be. He was pretty good but this process definitely involved more sweating, burning arms, stuff flying everywhere than it should have LOL…I will likely write about traveling with an infant (driving vs. flying) in the near future. Well, maybe – if we make it home in one piece!

Alright dudes, well doesn’t it seem like almost everyone wears contacts or glasses these days? I wear contacts 95% of the time but noticed my eyes starting to hurt more when I didn’t get a lot of sleep – which is pretty much every night for the past 5 months. It’s so necessary to have a reliable pair of glasses to wear to work or for early in the morning when those little guys (contact lenses) just won’t go in your eyes.

I have Michael Kors prescription glasses that I LOVE – the problem is that they are from like, 2012, and even though the prescription was outdated and no longer accurate, I didn’t want to order new ones because they are so expensive! Even with insurance, buying lenses and frames the traditional route (through your doctor) can be hundreds of $$$. So I just wore glasses that weren’t “strong” enough for a few years. Probably the cause of a few headaches? 🤔
I was so thankful that the Glasses Shop reached out to me at the perfect time – just a few weeks before I went back to work (while still waking up every night with a baby) – to pick out a pair of glasses and try out their shop. These glasses are:
Affordable
I’m not going to lie, I was a bit hesitant to order from this shop because they were so affordable. I figured something so inexpensive would be so so cheap. Not the case at all. The frames are so sturdy and the prescription is just right. Super impressed with both the price point and quality. I literally don’t have one complaint.
Fashionable
They have so many options to chose from and I’ve gotten so many compliments on these frames. Remember when you’re little and wearing glasses was so dorky – you’re like embarrassed when you have to get them?! Well now I feel like glasses (and sunglasses) are the best accessory and can make any outfit look more exciting. Did I mention The Glasses Shop offers prescription sunglasses as well?
Also, I need these glasses to make me look smart and cancel out my mom brain (which is real BTW.)

Convenient To Order
Request your prescription and PPD (pupillary distance) from your eye doctor. Because I had an exam in the last year, I called my doctor to request those two pieces of information and they sent them over via email within the hour. This is the information you will send over with your order
If you go to the glasses shop site on a desktop, there is an option to upload a picture of your face and virtually try on different frames. It sounds like it would be iffy but you can truly see how each frame will look on your face. Game changer in making my final decision.

Use discount code GSHOT50 for 50% off your order – enjoy!

I am wearing the Beauvais Wayfarer in Black (SKU: FZ0647) in case you are so inclined to try the same style.🤓
PS – how sweet is Calvin in these photos? Mama bear and baby bear tops made by etsy shop @hellohandpressed. 🐻

If you try out the glasses definitely let me know! Such a great alternative to ordering traditional prescription lenses or prescription sunglasses. I mostly love that you can order multiple pairs and switch up your look as often as you’d like, for such a great price!
Hope you all have an awesome week and go swimming or something along those lines, it’s seriously so hot!
💕 Kayla

{Month Five Update} & How Having a Baby Changes Your Priorities

Hello hello! How is everyone!?
In these monthly Calvin updates, along with his milestones, I’m also going to invite you inside of my thoughts and how I’m feeling from month to month. As baby changes, so does Mom, and I think it’s important we recognize that! It’ll be kind of like my Monthly Mom 2 cents. I don’t really have an exact focus for how I’ve been feeling in month five, as my brain and thoughts still seem to be all over the place, but I will try and put it into words.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how much I’ve changed this year. Things I never thought I’d say, do (not do), or want, are now my new reality. How having a baby, someone that relies on you 24/7, changes you and your priorities…big time. Am I an adult now? All bills and pre-tax contributions point to YES.

But seriously.

I used to watch my favorite reality shows at night and now I get to watch my baby play instead- I used to lift weights and do push-ups -now on many nights, my arm workouts are rocking my 17 lb. baby to sleep. I used to take as long as I want to shower and relax at night, now I bathe Calvin as long as he needs, and take the quickest shower possible to maximize my sleep. I used to be late to work because I couldn’t get my ass out of bed, now I’m late because I have to feed, dress (and cuddle with) another human being all before 830am. And no, I’m not talking about Craig. LOL.
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Along with this, my priorities have completely changed. All that seems to matter is the well-being of my child.  His happiness is my happiness. His tears are my tears. His achievements are my achievements. You’d think he’d just won a gold medal on Team USA when he rolled over for the first time, or when he sleeps for a span of longer than 5 hours.
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 It’s so easy to slip back into the thinking of, “remember when” or “I used to be able to do this”, but it is just not worth letting your mind stay in that space for too long.  It really hits me when I’m trying to keep up with others who don’t have kids (or a baby) or when I’m trying to plan something that would have been logistically so simple when it was just me. Is EVERYTHING more complicated? Yes. Do I think twice about solving said complications? No. This is my awesome life now, and I figure it out as I go.
All the Moms I know just seem to know how to handle life’s complexities, and I think I’m starting to get the hang of it too.
I think most things in life seem to work out in your favor, if you believe they will.


Alright, back to Calvin – because I know that’s the real reason you all are here anyways! Calvin is getting to be even more fun, even more adorable, and more outgoing than before. He is the biggest joy in our lives and as always, we are so excited for our future with him.
Here are his 5 month facts, stats and pics, of course!
  • Wearing 6-9 month clothing
  • ~17 lbs and ~27 inches
  • Eating 35-38 oz/day
  • Can hold his own bottle, however we don’t quite trust his grip just yet (envision milk everywhere)
  • No teeth yet, but starting the process with drooling, chewing on EVERYTHING and not sleeping too well at night
  • Still not sleeping through the night
  • Great at laughing, screaming, and talking
  • Can roll back to front and vice versa
  • Still the best baby in his class 🙂
  • Loves swimming at the pool
  • Loves clawing Mom & Dads cheeks when excited
  • Sleeping full time in his crib
  • His hair is finally growing back
  • Eyes are changing from blue to either green or brown (we can’t tell just yet)
  • Hates his nose or eyes being touched or cleaned
  • Loves nightly walks in his stroller
  • Just tried rice cereal for the first time tonight – it was a major hit and so cute!
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How have my other mama readers felt around 5 months? Anything fun/cool/scary I should be expecting in the next few weeks?
I hope you all have a fab rest of the week and that the weekend arrives seemingly quick! Love you all!

❤ Kayla

The 5th Trimester: Learning to Balance Time & Give Yourself a Break 

Hi all! How were your weekends?! We got all you can eat sushi, I finally did some stuff for the blog, we watched Craig in his soccer league final, and I went to the mall – by myself…oh, and I spent a lot of hours holding and cuddling with Calvin…not bad at all! 😊
So I really need to stop referring to my life in trimesters…but I promise that this is the last one! Saying 4th & 5th trimester, doesn’t even make sense, but they are so real, friends. Just becoming a new mom is really like 5 parts: 1-3 being the trimesters of pregnancy, the 4th being that 12 or so weeks after having baby (already spoken about that time too much) and for the working moms, I really believe there is a 5th…the end of maternity leave and return to their career. Dare I say that the 5th has been the most challenging of any? That’s where ya girl’s at right now. I’m just going to keep it real in this post – is that cool? I’ll give you guys a glimpse into how I’ve been feeling as of late. No frills, no fancy photos – just words from the heart. It’s not often I admit to the struggle during life’s difficulties, so I hope some of you can relate.
The weeks leading up to my return to work, were full of dread, and more crying than I care to admit. The night before my first day back, I literally had to wipe so many tears off of Calvin’s head before I finally laid him down for bed…I held him so long and was so sad that Sunday night.
Since then, I haven’t written much because I’ve honestly been trying to figure out my life & what the hell I’m doing.
Up until the last the last month or so, I felt like I had my shit together and I was owning this lifestyle categorized as motherhood. I was a new mom, in a good mental spot, starting to feel like “myself” again, get back to my exercise schedule, cooking meals at home, able to pick up a few times a week, etc. Lately, I often feel like my life is spinning out of control – I get to the end of each work week and feel like I’ve been blacked out for 5 straight days, trying to keep my head above water. In a whirlwind of emails, meetings, milk prep, daycare duty, baby bounces, bed time routines, and trying to find time to shower, I’ve never felt stretched so thin. There are dozens of things I’d like to accomplish in a day, or used to be able to accomplish in a day, and now I only truly have time for about 10% of those.
I’ve always been someone who rolls their eyes at people when they say they’re too busy, because I truly feel like you’ll make time for the things you want to make time for. Until having a child. I’ve racked my brain again and again and I can’t find a way to make more time. If you have multiple children or went through this a long time ago – you have probably overcome and mastered this time of your life. To you, I know I look and sound like a chicken with my head cut off. Because I basically am. Am I being dramatic?
I need more time. More time at work, more time with Calvin, more time with Craig, more time to sleep, more time to work on goals outside of my corporate job, more time to get ready in the mornings, more time on the weekends, more time to work out. For an overly motivated, overly competitive (I’ll admit it) individual, it has been very humbling to compromise with myself on what my battle against time will be each day. What do I give up today, in order to make time for something else?
I want to be Wonder Woman, but it’s truly just a wonder that I am managing to function successfully with all of these old responsibilities (work) and new responsibilities (motherhood) coming together. If I, or anyone else makes it look easy, it’s not. There is so much others don’t see behind the scenes.
The past month has been filled with more meals out, a messier apartment, less exercising, more stops to get ice cream, less blog posts, and of course less sleep, than I care to admit. Twice last week, Calvin was the last baby in the “Infant 1” room at daycare when I arrived at the end of the day.
It’s so easy to look at these things and feel like I am failing. Why didn’t I prepare more dinners ahead of time, why can’t I keep this place clean, why am I eating ice cream for the 3rd weeknight in a row, why didn’t I leave work earlier, why can’t I post a new blog every day?
How easy it is to forget that I still wake up each night between 3 and 4 am with Calvin and manage to get out of bed again by 6am, I’m still successfully pumping and breastfeeding exclusively, I’m greeted with a smile from Calvin every afternoon when I pick him up from daycare (even when he’s the last one), I’m leading a large team of individuals on a challenging work assignment, and I’m providing for my family so that we can buy and do the things we want.

When ‘they’ say it gets better, I believe them. Never easier, but better. Each week I learn new tips and tricks for mastering my routines, more ways to increase my efficiency, and what I need to find time for, in order to stay sane.
Craig’s Mom (now Grandma) said it best. She texted me and told me to give myself a break. How right is she?!
So I think I’ll take the best piece of advice that’s been given to me in a long time. I’m going to give myself a break – because us Moms can do A LOT, but we can’t do IT ALL. I think it’s okay to ask for help. It’s okay to say I’ll try again tomorrow.
As I head into the back half of 2016 (marketing lingo at its finest), I’m going to try & stop dwelling on the things that didn’t happen and that despite this being the most challenging time I can remember, it’s also been filled with more JOY & more LOVE that I can ever remember feeling in the past. I’m obsessed with my child, have the most supportive boyfriend, friends & family, and am so excited for our future together.
I hope you remember that you are only ONE person with so many hours in a day, to squeeze your babies as tight as you can, as often as you can, that you are succeeding despite your tough days, and that it’s okay to cut yourself some slack.
I think that maybe we are Wonder Women, after all.


Who has advice for the rookie mom? Any Mom hacks I must know for the 5th trimester?! All thoughts are very very welcome!
❤ Kayla

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.

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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!

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 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 shoppinkblush.com!
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
-or-
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*

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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 

Welcoming Calvin into the World + a few pieces of hospital advice

What a life changing week its been! A week ago today we were heading to the hospital about to welcome our son Calvin William into the world. I was scheduled to be induced at 7am and went into labor on my own at 6am that same day. My water was scheduled to be broken at 11:50am and it broke on it’s own at 11:40am. I can’t make this stuff up. I’m so thankful for that timing as 2/18 is truly the day he was meant to be born. The whole process was very smooth and my midwife was amazing – we had baby in our arms by 12:56pm. We are so grateful.

Craig & I are pretty obsessed with him and our newly formed family…and can’t stop talking about how cute we think little Calvin is (even if he pees on us daily and farts more than anything this size should be able to.) It’s such a surreal feeling to finally have him with us, when just last week (and for the 9 months prior) he was in my belly and we were wondering what he would be like. While it’s not easy in any way, it’s so much better than I could have imagined. I tried to send pics to as many friends as possible, but I wanted to take a minute to share all of our favorite personal hospital snapshots for you here!

img_1619IMG_0257Ready to go! Large & in charge! ^

IMG_1715IMG_1717IMG_1712IMG_1714IMG_1711IMG_1713IMG_1626IMG_1642I look frightened here (which I prob am) ^ but I’m actually in the middle of saying, “He’s SO precious!”

IMG_1708So sleepy by this point! ^


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You can see on our faces as we leave the hospital, how excited we are to head home to our own place with this sleeping angel. We dressed him in a 3 month outfit to leave, BTW. We had to stay an extra night (everything is ok!) so by this point we were going stir crazy and were ready. It’s so much more comfortable having our own space to take care of our ‘lil man. At his first doctor’s appointment on Monday, they confirmed he is right on track and perfectly healthy – there’s not much more you can ask for! We are overwhelmed with the support and well wishes from our family & friends and Baby Calvin can’t wait to meet all of you!

There is a lot of “advice” on the internet and every hospital is different, but there are a few things I’d wish I’d known! Mom-to-be friends, seriously feel free to ask me anything while it’s still fresh in my head! 🙂  Here are a few pieces of advice I’d recommend:

  • Bring your own shower towel – turns out it takes about 5 hand sized towels to dry off after a shower.
  • Bring a boppy nursing pillow – it’s really hard to get in a good position in those hospital beds and I wished that had provided something other than plastic-ish sleeping pillows.
  • Bring socks, cotton mittens, hats, and plain onesies for baby – they didn’t provide these items (except for 1 hat after delivery.) Apparently you aren’t supposed to cut baby nails right away and he would have scratched his face so much without the mittens. Here are the kind we like.
  • That you can get an epidural at 4cm – I came to the hospital at 4cm and ended up asking around 6cm. They don’t really offer it up, until you ask.
  • How amazing and necessary the epidural is – God bless Moms who do this shit naturally. It did not take away from the birth experience at all. You feel no contraction pain, but can still feel your legs! After the epidural I was laughing and watching Netflix on my iPad.
  • You can take ALL the baby and mom extras they leave for you in the room (diapers, wipes, gauze, pads, nursing accessories, etc) – my sister is a Nurse Practitioner at Children’s and says they can’t re-use anything extra anyways. In fact, ask for more of everything the day before you leave and then swoop it up and take it with you! Make sure to bring an extra bag for everything you get while there.

I hope this helps!

Next up, I will be posting tips for taking your own photos at home and Calvin will be my model as a Little Bear 🙂

Thanks for reading!

Love, Kayla ❤