Family Pumpkin Patching (in Free People!)

 We finally made it to the pumpkin patch yesterday – which means it officially feels like fall! The past two weekends have been rainy and dreary here, so this was the first weekend we’ve had in a while where we could even make it outside. We took full advantage….I think all of central NJ was at this same orchard!
I said we were going to get Calvin’s first pumpkin, but I really wanted to go for the apple cider and donuts…duh! We waited in line 45 min for a bag of donuts, but there was no way I was leaving without them. Craig had never had warm, orchard made, cider donuts (aka he has never lived) and he said the wait was #worthit.
I wasn’t originally going to do a post on our pumpkin patch adventure but we ended up getting some great photos that I wanted to share in one spot. I can’t get over Calvin in his plaid and jeans. I also realized that both the top and jeans I wore are some of my favorite ‘Free People’ items that I own, so I linked below and left some tips on where and when to find this brand on sale.



I LOVE Free People clothing – the material is so soft, quality, and comfy! BUT I never buy full price…watch for this brand at Nordstrom Rack and in the sale sections of Macy’s, Lord & Taylor and Nordstrom. You can absolutely get items discounted year round! The shirt I am wearing is originally $98 and I got for 54% off at Nordstrom Rack. The jeans are originally $78 and I got for $25 at Nordstrom Rack. The cheapest I found online right now is at Macy’s for $32 (but they have 25% off sitewide!) I highly recommend sizing down (this is a Small and it’s big!) & Free People as a brand in general, but do not recommend paying full price 🙂
Free People Purple Hi-Lo Blouse – Purple
Free People Hi-Lo Blouse – Black (54% off!)
Free People Purple Top – Similar (40% off)
Free People Relaxed Skinny Jeans (on sale!)
Large ‘K’ Pendant Necklace 
Kayla Sunglasses
Craig’s Plaid Flannel
What are some other fall family activities we could do with an infant? Any ideas!? I loveee seeing all of your fall family pics, keep them coming friends!
PS – I am also still loving Snapchat (as opposed to instastories) and I need some new friends! Follow us @greenskm:
We are off to meet our friends’ new baby today, get some blog shots for upcoming posts (some exciting partnerships!) and I want to make some chili for football! Have a great Sunday…talk soon!

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Our {Mommy & Me} Fall Fashion Favorites + a GAP discount code

Hi all, how are we? I’m back, back again – I have to write about the sweetest thing that has started happening with Calvin lately. I wrote about this on a previous instagram post, but he has definitely started WANTING me and showing preference to who holds him, and when. This is new in the last few weeks. When I get home from work he is basically reaching and lunging for me to hold him and just pick him up and squeeze him. If I go in the other room, he now notices, and if I put him down before he wants me to, he’ll grip onto me harder. If we’re sitting on the floor he tries to crawl up my legs. I know that this will probably get old but for now I am just enjoying him wanting to spend time with and love his mom! He shows he needs me and I know I need him, too.

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Anyways…it’s a new season, a new month, and guess what? I’m still obsessed with neutrals. I’ve enlisted the help of a particularly cute baby model to help me with this post 🙂 I’m thinking I will do a ‘Mommy & Me’ type fashion post every so often going forward.
Last fall I was preggo and wearing pretty much all maternity clothes, this fall, I get to match with my little dude – so fun!
So because of this year’s change in size, I was feeling like I needed some new things… and I found myself going for all of the brown, tan, cream basics per usual. Am I boring? I’m such a brown, goldeny wearing girl. I love wearing these type of shades, and this always translates into my make-up and accessories as well. I talked in my everyday makeup routine about this and I will be showing you all my newest neutral favorite fall/winter accessory from JORD watches next week!

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My fall necessities as always are sweaters, jeans and boots. #basic huh?  I love me a good pair of brown boots, a soft comfy sweater and perfect fit pair of jeans. Obviously I had to get Calvin the same items – brown baby booties, a comfy knit henley onesie and the cutest little baby jeans.

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What I’m wearing:
Boots
Sweater
Jeans (Similar)
What Calvin’s wearing:
Booties
Onesie (similar)
Jeans
Both of our jeans are from GAP – all of my best, comfiest, and longest lasting pants are from here. I’m so happy I can pass my love of GAP JEANS onto Calvin so we can match. He’s totally going to hate me for this later on in life so I’ll just do it now while I can get away with it!
Use my code below for 35% off a GAP purchase through 10/8:
35% off! Includes sales styles. Use code WANT at Gap. Restrictions apply. Ends 10/8.
Shop some of mine & Calvin’s other fall favorites:

Cable Knit Sweater Top

Heathered Mock Neck Sweater

Ribbed Knit Sweater

Contemporary V-Neck Sweater

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^I’ve had a pair of Aldo knee high brown boots for 3 years – more pricey, but the best!

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Distressed Low-Rise Jeans

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We are going to a beer festival tomorrow during the day with our friends who have a little baby boy as well – yes, we’re taking the little guys! Can’t wait to relax and have some fun on this October weekend.
Love you all! Thanks for reading – I hope you can find some comfy & casual fall picks for you and  your babes ❤

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KaylaSignature-02

How FX New Series ‘Better Things’ relates + A Mom Survival Kit Giveaway feat. Ray Ban & BAGGU

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When we moved to NJ, we decided to be super cheap and not pay for full cable so that we could save some $$$. Turns out JUST internet here is more expensive than our whole cable and internet package in OH – awesome! haha BUT we were missing some of our favorite sports channels and others such as FX, Bravo, USA, etc. Craig now subscribes to a streaming service called Sling and it allows us to get all of these channels. It also allows me not to hear Craig complain about only seeing the Jets, Giants and Eagles on our channels week after week. Has anyone used this before? Do you like it?
With our new service, I discovered  ‘Better Things’ which premiered this month on FX, and is a raw depiction of a working, single mom doing her best to raise her 3 daughters. The main character Pamela Albion, plays Sam, who is hilarious, unfiltered, and also stars in Californication. I rarely have time to watch tv, but the episodes are super short (27-28 min), quick, relatable, and I can watch or turn on in the background at night while feeding Calvin. I didn’t grow up with a single mom, but I did grow up with 2 sisters and some of their interactions are eerily familiar.
I am a huge fan of TV, music, podcasts, books, etc, that are relatable –at one point in the first episode Sam’s youngest daughter is begging her to lay down in bed with her until she falls asleep. Sam ends up falling asleep and waking up in the middle of the night, panicked, confused where she’s at, and feeling like she got nothing done before she fell asleep. This is ALL too familiar – I’ve written about this several times, but I lose so much time laying or cuddling with Calvin at night, which causes me to fall asleep before preparing enough for the next day. Us Mom’s can only do so much in a day before the energy tank runs out! Am I right?

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To help promote and encourage convo surrounding the first few episodes of the series, I partnered with FX to receive a Mom Survival Kit containing the following items:
• Ray-Ban Sunglasses (I wrote here how sunglasses are a mom must have)
• Chipolo bluetooth keyring (for when we’d lose our head if it weren’t attached)
• BAGGU Leather Clutch for mom’s things (perfect for the diaper bag or work bag)
• Emergency Beauty Kit (duh)
• Hypoallergenic travel pillow (perfect size)
• Ultra-Soft travel pillow protector
• Essential Oils Blend Mini
• Skinny Lip Balm
• “Credit Card” Mints

Of course I wouldn’t talk about this if I didn’t have one to give away for a reader as well! To win, visit this link to check out a few show clips and leave a comment below on which item you’d be most excited to win by 11:59PM on 9/28. Winner will be chosen randomly on 9/29 from blog + instagram entrants.
Happy watching & happy entering, friends! Have a great rest of your weekend 💙

{Month Seven} + Thoughts on Having a Baby Away from Family

We are officially to seven months!! How? Why? What’s happening? I have had 2 people in public say, “he’s almost one year!” Whoa people, let’s slow it down – he’s still my little cuddly baby. That is one exaggeration where I’d rather people round down. I’m so excited for our future but wanting to cherish every moment that I can. Every night after Calvin eats and falls asleep, I still hold hold him on my chest for about 30 min – 1 hour (and I wonder why I have no time to do anything) but I know that these moments will be gone so quick so – IDC!
I mentioned in my Instagram yesterday that he is seRIoUsLy giving us a run for our money! He is teething, not sleeping through consistently and extremely crazy rolling everywhere. The teacher at daycare told me that he loves taking the full bin of toys and pouring it over his head. I’ve never heard a more true metaphor for my life, LOL! I’m frightened for when he full on crawls, walks and then runs. #notready

In Month 7, I am officially feeling the stress of having a baby while living far away from the help of any and all family. {We do have friends here, but coincidentally (in a positive way) they all have babies or are pregnant themselves!} The first few months were great while I was on maternity leave and I had all the time in the world to focus on Calvin, while still getting personal items taken care of. Months 4-7 have been a bit of a different story. I’ve shared my working mom woes, but I think I have realized why the past few months have felt so challenging and straining. We have no help or moments of “relief.” It hit me like a ton of bricks this past weekend.
For a while I think I thought we were invincible and that we could do anything we set our minds to – which we can, BUT it would be better with people to help. Do a lot of people successfully raise their children away from family? Yes, and we are successfully doing it too, but it really is much harder. Our personal endeavors are very few and far between – and our time for each other is limited. Legit, I sometimes struggle finding time to shower. I am exhausted at night and he’s up between 5-6am each morning. Even if we only get “behind” on life a bit each week, it starts to add up. Before we know it, we have 6 bins of laundry waiting to be folded (we have to re-dry things like 3 times or they’re wrinkly as shit), I haven’t worked out in 2 months (more on this later), we’ve eaten dinner “out” 4 days in a row, and it looks like Hurricane Katrina has gone through our living room. While I know that this stage of our lives is short and fleeting – it is still extremely overwhelming and unlike anything I have experienced in the past.
All I want are mom-made casseroles and cookies on demand, and someone to do all my household ‘chores’ -is that too much to ask?
In true fashion to my writings, I want to also talk about the positives we have experienced while on our little Cantor family adventure away from home. While it’s been challenging, there has been no shortage of amazing moments that we are extremely grateful for.
*Craig, Calvin and I have become so much closer because of this. Even though Calvin doesn’t know it yet, I think he will be proud of the fact that we took a chance on moving away, getting out of our comfort zone, and then overcoming to provide as much love as we can to him in his early stages of life.
*We have learned to do everything on our own through trial and error – the best form of learning.
*When we DO have help, it’s such a blessing. Something we might have overlooked or expected while living close.
*This is only preparing us for our future and the challenges we may face with more than one child. Yes, we plan on sibling(s) for little Cal.
*Because this area is very full of “transplants”, three of our best couple friends are also going through the same thing – having new babies far away from family.
*Calvin goes with us everywhere and has become Mr. Social Butterfly. He’s so good when we get him out of the house!

Calvin Updates
Likes:
  • Not sleeping all night
  • Waking up early
  • Showering himself in toys
  • Bath time
  • Being tickled
  • Holding Mom’s cell phone
  • Eskimo Kisses
  • Toys that rattle
  • Soft blankets
  • Rolling everywhere!
  • Riding on Dad’s shoulders
Dislikes:
  • When Mom leaves the room
  • Chunky baby food
  • Sleeping in
  • Naps
  • Getting his face wiped off
  • Being constrained in any way
7 month photo update:
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Who else lives away from family and is feeling some of these challenges? I definitely want to connect – feel free to send me a message in any way 🙂
Stay tuned this week – I’ll be talking about one of my favorite new, quick, easy to watch, relatable shows and hosting a giveaway along with it!
Talk soon!

KaylaSignature-02

Infant Toys for Development: Little Tikes #playwithpurpose

Let me just preface this post by saying a year or so ago, I never thought I would be blogging or interested in baby toys, their purpose, or which ones are the best. Priorities change so so fast …when you have a little one, he or she quickly becomes the most important responsibility in your life!
One thing I did NOT expect as a new mom was how early Calvin would be interested in toys and how important it would be that we have the right ones handy.
I remember when Calvin was only like 4-6 weeks old, he seemed bored just laying in his rock n’ play and my mom suggested we get him a play mat for our home right away. This way, he would have toys to focus on, grab at, and stimulate him. By 8 weeks he was grabbing at the dangling toys and could play independently for up to 20 minutes at a time.
Fast forward to 6 months, and this child needs stimulation constantly. He’s such a crazy little man, always grabbing at the things around him and very curious to discover anything in his line of site. Toys have been so important to have with us as we travel and take Calvin places in which he needs to be entertained. Little Tikes introduced me to the concept that products/toys can also be used as tools to help baby develop. That sounds like killin’ two birds with one stone –I’ll take it!
Two of Calvin’s new faves are…
The Little Tikes Shake ‘n Rattle Crabbie Ring designed to help baby grasp. Not only do I feel like this toy has helped him with ability to hold on, but he also mimics me after I shake it (and it’s not a super light toy!) The first time Calvin played with this crabbie, he was laughing hysterically!


And his Little Tikes Hide ‘n Seek Hermie designed to improve eye tracking. The little hermit retracts back into its shell as Calvin watches – and it vibrates at the same time. I actually feel like this toy has helped with his grasp as well because he tries to pull the hermit out of the shell to see its eyes. Isn’t it funny how babies love toys with eyes? I also like how you can hang this from a car seat handle or overhead play mat.

I also really want to get Calvin this Little Tikes Soothe ‘n Spin Octopus – he’s obsessed with any stuffed animals and the spinning motion is meant to calm baby before a nap. If you know us, you know Calvin needs as much help as he can get while trying to get to sleep!

What are the best toys you all have discovered for 6 months and up? Anything I should expect developmentally in month 7? Experienced mamas, let me know! 🙂
For more on these these Little Tikes toys, where to purchase and how you can #playwithpurpose- you can check them out here!
I hope you all have a fabulous weekend and enjoy the warm weather while it’s still around!

KaylaSignature-02

{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!

KaylaSignature-02

 

{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

Our Engagement Story + My Fave Vacation Photos

Hi Friends! It has been a CRAZY week back from vacation and so much has happened since I posted previously about the 4th of July. I got those pictures taken of our family for both the blog and just to have some quality images of the 3 of us – little did I know that this holiday would take on such a larger meaning for our family. We got engaged on July 4th, 2016, in Corolla, North Carolina. We were on a family reunion type trip with 18 of my family members staying in one large beach house, so they were all there watching!
I know it may sound dumb or that you’re thinking, “yeah right”, when I say I was shocked. We do have a child together and already function as a true family, but I had NO IDEA it was happening at this time, let alone this year. We had talked so much about re-focusing our priorities to Calvin, our careers, figuring out where we’d be long term, and eventually buying a house, that I thought engagement was the LAST thing on our roster for this year. Also, Craig can hardly ever surprise me, so I thought I’d know for sure before it happened, and that I’d have to fake being surprised so he didn’t know I knew …lol! Well he got me good.
I has previously told Craig when we do get engaged, I better have my nails, hair & makeup done for picture purposes. #princessstatus So, the day before (July 3rd) it was pouring all day and my sisters tried to take me to get my nails done. I didn’t have time to go before we left & what else do you do on a beach vacation when it’s raining? When we got to the place they couldn’t take us because of availability and I said “oh well, I don’t even care about my nails.” There was no more convincing me that we should try elsewhere. Fail #1.
On the 4th, before dinner, we took showers and Craig was trying so hard to get me to dry my hair and “get ready” but I wasn’t having it because we were staying in for dinner to grill out. God knows I won’t get ready if I don’t have to…especially on vacation. 😂 So I threw my wet hair into a clip and bolted up to dinner. Fail #2.
These two things show right away that I had absolutely NO IDEA I was about to get engaged, as I was always sure I needed to look my very best during one of the biggest moments of my life.
Earlier in the day, Craig had told me that he wanted to give a toast before dinner just to thank my family for having him and say how cool it is that we all got together. I said, “ARE YOU SURE?” I thought he maybe just had too many beers at the pool…however, others had said prayers or toasts before previous meals, so I suppose it wouldn’t be that weird.
Craig telling me ahead of time he was doing this was so so smart – when everyone had gotten their food and he stood up, I was expecting the “toast.” When he started talking, I took a hugeeeee bite of my cheeseburger because I did not think I was about to get engaged. #hangrymama
As he began to get more serious and look a bit nervous, my chewing slowed immediately and my hands covered my face to hide my tears. I don’t even cry that often. I couldn’t believe it was happening. After every thing we’ve been through in the 3 years we’ve been together – a move across country, 3 apartments, stressful days at new jobs, A BABY – it was just so bittersweet and I don’t think there was a dry eye in the room. He did so good. He’d been planning so long for this moment.

It’s funny, you set all of these ground rules or requirements in your mind for when you get engaged and how you want it to happen. Then, when the moment came, I wasn’t thinking about anything except the fact that it’s finally official – I’m going to marry the most selfless, caring, sweet man and Dad that I know!  No fancy location, fancy outfit, perfectly polished nails, or expensive dinner could have topped this moment. I feel so lucky every day and I can’t wait to finally share a last name with my two guys.

Here are a few other of my fave photos from our trip:

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We didn’t take as many pictures on vacation as I would have liked because Craig’s phone got wet and we usually use his camera. Honestly, I was also trying to just enjoy each moment on our trip & not think as much about perfectly capturing every second. We also haven’t bothered lately with using another camera because well, that’s one extra thing to worry about. I do, however, want and NEED to invest in a DLSR. Does anyone have any recommendations for one that is easy to use and won’t break the bank? Please shoot me a message – would love your opinions!
Now, onto planning a wedding (scary!) We have a really busy summer with my work trips, my best friend’s bachelorette & wedding, etc, so we will probably focus more on planning come fall. For now, we are not in a HUGE rush, but I’m sure I will be capturing a lot of the planning journey here on the blog once it begins.
Huge thanks to everyone for your continued support and sweet notes on our engagement. Love you all!

❤ Kayla

Setting up for Success @ Work: Made Possible by a Great Bag, Stretch Pants & Kayello Coffee

Hello friends! Wow, so much has happened since I wrote last – we were out of town (as I’m sure you all saw via instagram) for family vacation so I took a bit of a break from posting on Kayla Marie. We also got ENGAGED on the 4th of July(!!!!) – I’ll be sharing our full engagement story and my favorite pics from our trip, later this week, so I won’t spoil too many details now 😁
I’ll admit, I’m semi-depressed that vacation is over as we were looking forward to it for so long, and it was such an amazing time with family. I wrote yesterday on a post that time always flies when you don’t want it to. So true, huh?! I’m going to have some serious ‘Sunday Scaries’ tonight. As we’ve arrived back home, the reality of everything I need to accomplish at work this month is setting back in!
Before the summer is over, I am going to LA, Cincinnati, Nashville, NYC, and Cincinnati again – it’s going to be a whirlwind! BUT I’M READY!
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Prepping to set myself up for a good week, is so key for me. I feel like I can always tell within the first hour of a work day how it’s going to go. If I can answer yes to these 3 questions before I’m out the door, I’m on the right track:
Do I have everything I need?
Am I comfortable in what I’m wearing?
Do I have my caffeine handy?
What items make this possible? A good catch-all bag, stretchy pants that you can dress up, and coffee to go!

When I returned to work, one of the most overwhelming aspects was how much stuff I need for the day as a working mom: computer, wallet, phone, keys, sunglasses, work badge, packed lunch, water bottle, coffee mug, breast pump, extra parts, bottles, lids, milk freezer bags. That is a lot of shit. I finally found a cool and functionable bag that can carry (almost) all of this…and it’s a backpack so yay to having free hands! This Skip Hop bag is actually a diaper bag, so outside of work I can always re-purpose to use for Calvin.
I’m obsessed with any and everything black & gold, so I love how it matches almost everything I wear to work. The front zip pocket holds my personal belongings (wallet, phone, keys, badge, etc) the side pocket can hold a water bottle on one side and coffee mug on the other, and the large main opening holds my computer, pump, and lunch.
I also have this diaper bag (which has been discontinued by the manufacturer, but is still available via this link on Amazon) and I’ve gotten so many compliments on both. I highly recommend for all my fashionable mama friends out there!

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To ensure comfort, I’ve pretty much stopped wearing any pants that don’t contain stretch. I can wear jeans to work everyday if I want, but like to wear black pants as a dressier option. Black stretch pants (actual pants, not leggings this time) can be dressed up, yet keep you comfy at the same time. Here are my faves. Find your go-to’s and wear everyday with a blouse, flats, wedges, or pumps.
Women's Mid-rise Skinny Jegging (Curvy Fit) Black - Mossimo™. Image 1 of 6.
Women’s Mid-Rise Skinny Jean
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Bi-Stretch Skinny Ankle Pants
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Low-Rise Rockstar Jeggings
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1969 Stretch Skinny Jeans

Last, but certainly MOST IMPORTANT – I make coffee at home every morning for my 30 minute commute. I realized quickly that the coffee I make at home needs to be good, or I will give in to stopping for, or buying coffee every day (such a bad habit!)  I am currently loving Kayello Coffee – a philanthropic artisan coffee roasting company located in Northeast Ohio. Not only is the coffee amazing, but they also give back to local or global communities using the profits from each sale, by picking a new charity each month to focus on.

Kayello Coffee

When I received my coffee, I reached out to the owner to tell her how amazing the coffee smelled before I even tried it. She said, “this is how great coffee should smell – it was roasted one day before shipment!” If high quality coffee and supporting small business is your thing – you have to try. My first bag was the Ethopia Yirga Adado blend, but I can’t wait to try their newest signature blend, Castle Black.

Check them out and use discount code KAYLA10 towards any purchase this week. I promise you will love it! Please let me know if you try.
You can check out more from Kayello on their channels linked below:
Facebook
Instagram
Website
(PS – The stainless steel mug shown in these pics is perfect for those on the go as it has a clip handle that can latch onto a bag, strap, stroller, etc.)

What are your daily go-to’s? Do you find yourself wearing and using the same items every day!? Definitely need to hear if there’s anything I NEED or am missing! Have a great week – kick ass, take names, and squeeze your babes tightly!

❤ Kayla

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