Beach Day and Matching Father/Son Clothing

June 14, 2017


With Father's Day coming up I figured I'd do a little round up of my favorite matching father/son clothing.  A few days ago Tom and Jack finally got to wear the matching swimsuits (linked below) I bought for them this spring, and it was so adorable seeing them play in the waves together while "twinning."  Normally I'm a sucker for coordinating my outfits with Jack, but sometimes his daddy needs to get in on the matching too, don't you think?  Tom and Jack also have the crab shirts I linked to below.  They are adorable!

boys' crab hoodie | men's crab t-shirt | boys' floral swim trunks | men's floral swim trunks | boys' gingham shirt | men's gingham shirt | boys' aloha shortsmen's aloha shorts | boys' shoesmen's shoes

I couldn't let them have all the fun so I wore a color coordinated non-maternity swimsuit that I am in love with.  The ruched sides make it super flattering...even when you're 7 months pregnant (I just sized up when I ordered it).  There are only a few navy ones left but they have the same style suit in white and some darling patterns (I'm obsessed with this lemon one).  I highly recommend this suit, the fit is amazing!  As for Jack's rash guard, he is wearing this simple white one (I like that it matches all of his swimsuits) and it's a looser fit which is a nice change from the tight ones he wears most of the time.  It even has a hood.

P.S.  After putting this post together I've decided that websites need to have a search feature so that it will sort matching parent/child or brother/sister clothing.  This was much harder to put together than I expected!

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Life and Pregnancy Update

June 12, 2017

Hi everyone!  I'm sorry for my lack of posts lately.  We are in the middle of moving and left Ft. Leavenworth, KS about a week ago.  Moving overseas is a big ordeal, between getting your household goods packed and crated and shipping your car, so things have been so busy lately.  Plus I had a bunch of Reserve days that I had to squeeze in before we moved.  We will be nomads for about a month before we fly to Hawaii and start house hunting.  Jack and I spent a few days in Atlanta where we stayed with my parents and visited both sets of my grandparents, my brother, and some other family members.  One downside to moving to Hawaii is that it's so far from family.  Tom and I are both from the East Coast so we are trying to squeeze in visits with everyone while we can.  I don't plan on leaving the island until next summer because I know it's going to be too difficult to get anywhere with a toddler and a newborn.  Thankfully my parents already have tickets to visit us at Christmastime! 

Tom drove in from Kansas on Saturday and picked us up, and now we are at Fripp Island, SC.  Tom will be driving to Maine to visit his parents next week, but Jack and I will get 2 full weeks here with my parents, which will be nice.  We fly to Hawaii at the end of the month and then will live in a hotel for a while until we find a house to rent.  We are looking at 3 very different areas on Oahu, so once we get there and view a few homes we will make our decision.

As far as pregnancy goes, I am 28 weeks and 3 days pregnant today, which is just crazy to me.  Hello, third trimester!  This pregnancy truly has flown by.  Below is an update on a few different areas of pregnancy. 

WORKOUTS:  I'll be honest, I have not worked out nearly as much as I did when I was pregnant with Jack.  I was pretty consistent with workouts up until 3 weeks ago (I was a member of Stroller Strong Moms in Leavenworth), but once my Reserve training started and our move process started it pretty much fell by the wayside.  I tried to run a few days ago but only made it about 25 feet before it felt too uncomfortable, so I think my running days are numbered.  I made it to 35 weeks before I quit running last time, so quitting now seems early to me, but I am much larger this time around so it's not surprising.  I'll continue to play it by ear though, so maybe I'll be able to run a few more times before baby girl gets here.

FOOD CRAVINGS:  I've really been into citrus fruits, pineapple, orange juice and yogurt.  Yogurt has been a consistent favorite with both of my pregnancies, and the craving of tart fruits isn't too far from normal.  I've also eaten my fair share of ice cream this time around :)  

BABY MOVEMENTS:  At first I thought we had a calm one on our hands this time, but lately I'm starting to change my mind about that.  Jack would push really, really hard in one direction, but our baby girl seems to flail more and do flips.  Jack's energetic personality in the womb is exactly what we got on the outside, so I'm wondering if we will have a second little ball of energy.  If so, I'm going to be exhausted!  Her favorite time to move is when I'm trying to fall asleep, which of course ends up keeping me awake.  I love all her movements though because they are a sign that she's thriving in there, and I can't wait for her to get here!

MY BODY:  Oh goodness, this body of mine is not doing pregnancy quite as gracefully as I did last time.  I'm already up over 25 pounds and have 12 weeks to go.  Last time I didn't think I got any stretch marks, but then discovered them on my lower belly after Jack was born.  I think I've already gotten a few more this time around.  It's a bummer but I guess it's just all part of the experience.  I'm larger than I was with Jack, so many of my old maternity clothes a too tight.  I still feel really good and am sleeping well, but getting out of bed is more difficult, carrying Jack up the stairs winds me, and bending over to put Jack in his crib or change is diaper is rather hard.  He can tell that changes are going on with my body, although he has no clue a baby is coming to shake things up.  He pokes in my belly button whenever he sees it, and he puts things in my cleavage when I hold him sometimes (I'm normally very small-chested but am getting busty again as my body prepares for breastfeeding).

CLOTHES:  I've recently bought a few new pairs of "bum around" shorts that are really comfy.  This pair of maternity shorts has cute trim detail around the leg holes.  I also bought maternity blue and white striped tankini (not my normal style of swimsuit but it works while pregnant).  I bought this non-maternity palm print dress that I'm obsessed with (it's only $12 right now!  Sizes are limited though).  I just sized up so it's not so tight.  I also bought this blue and white fitted floral maternity dress that I haven't worn yet but plan to wear it in Charleston or Beaufort in the next 2 weeks.  It's so gorgeous!

These next few weeks are going to fly by and I don't know how often I'll be able to take time to blog, so please bear with me!  And make sure you follow me on Instagram because I'm pretty active over there.  Thanks so much for reading!


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Mommy Monday: Birdling

June 5, 2017

Happy Monday!  We are currently living out of bags and suitcases because the movers packed up all of our household goods last the timing of this post with Birdling is extremely fitting.  Things have been a whirlwind lately: movers in our house for 3 days, Tom and Jack flew to South Carolina for the weekend, Jack got handed off to my parents in Atlanta, I had 3 days of Reserve drill, and today I am leaving Kansas for the last time and flying to Atlanta to spend some time with my family and to meet back up with Jack.  Tom will arrive at the end of the week once he graduates from the Army's Command and General Staff Officer College (after driving to St. Louis to ship our car), and then we will head to Fripp Island for a little while, before moving to Hawaii at the end of the month.  Oh and then we will have a baby.  Whew...I'm exhausted just typing all of that.  So many moving pieces when you move across the ocean while 7 months pregnant, and even though things are crazy I am so excited for every single part of it. 

This Mommy Monday I am excited to share Birdling Bags with you!  The tote I have is the Grey Day Tripper, and it's an amazingly durable bag that also helps keep you more organized than similarly designed totes (that often have no interior or exterior pockets).  This is going to be my flight carry-on bag later today because I love it so much and it holds a lot of stuff, and I foresee lots of trips with it to the beach and pool in the coming months.  My favorite part is that it has lots of pockets, including an insulated snap-in pouch, so basically a mini cooler for you snacks inside your bag.  I feel like I'm always carrying around snacks for Jack and most of the time they end up at the bottom of my bag and the cold ones end up room temperature (is there anything worse than warm string cheese?).  I'm sure Jack will be very happy once I start carrying his snacks in here.

Birdling bags are designed by two moms who are lifelong best friends, who were anxious to come up with a solution to messy bags while traveling with babies.  I believe they did just that, while also creating bags that are stylish and thoughtfully designed for travel.  They offer a variety of sizes, from the mini day tripper to the weekender bag so if you're looking for a good solution to staying organized while traveling (with or without kids) then be sure to check out Birdling!

Also, don't forget to check out the blogs of my Mommy Monday crew to see how these mommas style and use their Birdling bags:

Mireille at City Peach
Nina at The HSS Feed
Tiffany at Tiffany Style Blog
Ali at Inspired By...

Outfit Details

skirt (old, non-maternity from Gap) | shirt (old, Gap Maternity) | shoes | bag c/o Birdling

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Scenes and Thoughts from Memorial Day Weekend

May 31, 2017

As most of you all know, Memorial Day Weekend holds a very strong emotional meaning to me.  Due to the nature of being a West Point grad and serving in the Army during a time of war, the vast majority of my friends have deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan, many have been injured, and a few never made it home.  I try to keep my blog my "happy place," but I also like to write what is on my heart and keep things real.  

I lost my first husband, 1LT Dimitri del Castillo, when he was killed by a sniper in Afghanistan while leading his Infantry platoon on a mission.  I was in Afghanistan at the time as well.  It has been nearly 6 years since he lost his life and my life turned upside down.  At this point it seems like my life with him a lifetime ago, if not just a dream.  I'm so wrapped up in motherhood right now that I don't experience certain emotions as strongly as I used to.  I miss Dimitri every single day, and I still mourn that future with him that I once saw so vividly, yet I also absolutely love this life I am living now.  It's difficult to process sometimes.  Sometimes I feel calloused for not shedding tears as often as I used to, but I think that's just the nature of the passage of time, especially when you are able to continue seeing the beauty in life and not let grief destroy you.  Grief is a river that I am still learning to navigate, but I am thankful that there are fewer rapids now than there used to be.  

This past weekend we visited the National World War I Museum and Memorial.  I guess I never really thought about it when I lived in DC, but there is no WWI memorial in our nation's capitol.  Instead, it is located in Kansas City and it is extremely well done.  It was deliberately designed so that everything has a meaning, and it is certainly worth the trip if you are ever in this neck of the woods.  A museum visit with an almost 19 month old isn't ideal, but we were still able to see almost everything and even snapped a few photos.

I dressed Jack in a monogrammed Jon Jon I had made by my mom's friend Laurie, who owns Bee Sweet Baby.  She made him one last summer too, and I blogged about it here.  They're high quality and much more affordable than the (also adorable) ones from Beaufort Bonnet Company, so if you're looking for a personalized outfit for your little one this summer then be sure to check out Bee Sweet Baby.  Just send Laurie a Facebook message on her page and she can work with you to create just what you're looking for.  

I hope you all had a nice Memorial Day Weekend!

outfit details:

seersucker Jon Jon | white sneakers c/o Janie and Jack | my striped shorts | my gold sandals (that I wear pretty much all the time) | multistrand pearl necklace

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Summertime in Janie and Jack

May 26, 2017

outfit details

Summer is here!  Summer has always been my favorite season because I love long sunny days, hot weather, days at the beach, and naturally, cute warm weather clothes.  I've had lots of fun dressing Jack as the weather's gotten warmer, especially because he's so active and curious about everything outside around him.  We took him to his first baseball game last weekend after taking these photos, and even though he spent more time playing on the playground and running up and down the concrete ramps, it was so much fun exposing him to such a staple summertime event.  Plus he looked adorable and put-together in his new Janie and Jack outfit.

I recently visited Janie and Jack for the first time to stock up on some summer staples for Jack and our baby girl on the way, and then a few days later they randomly reached out to me and asked if I'd like to partner with them so that Jack could share a fun and colorful summer look with you.  Now, Jack is actually a very uncooperative model because he's so energetic, but I quickly said yes because love the style and quality of the children's clothing from Janie and Jack.  In fact, I had just purchased quite a few pieces of toddler boy clothing (like this sailboat swimsuit and this striped anchor swimsuit) and baby girl clothing (I wish these bamboo print shorts came in my size), so I knew it was a partnership made in heaven!

When I think of summer I often think of the colors red, white and blue because of all the patriotic American holidays that happen in the summertime.  I chose this preppy little outfit for Jack, complete with linen shorts, a striped belt, the cutest plaid button-down, and white twill sneakers (to match my own).  I'm so glad we finally got his hair cut because he looks so put-together and "all-American" with his parted hair and his Janie and Jack outfit.  It melts my momma heart!  I've loved every age so far, but 18 months may be my favorite because he's really coming into his own and developing quite the personality (as I'm sure you can tell from these photos).

Make sure you check out Janie and Jack this weekend, they have a great Memorial Day sale going on right now!  What Janie and Jack pieces are you favorite?  

This post was sponsored by Janie and Jack, and I received Jack's outfit for free.  I only work with companies I love that I believe you will love too!  All thoughts are my own.

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Periwinkle Maxi from StitchBee Boutique

May 22, 2017

I've always dreamt of owning a boutique so that I could curate my very own storefront or website.  I'd offer an eclectic mix of household items and clothing at affordable prices, selling things that fit my aesthetic and style.  I've been afraid to bite the bullet though, because all of it, from creating and managing a retail website to figuring out taxes, is all rather overwhelming to me...especially because I'm the mom of a toddler and we move around a lot for the Army.  Kristi Ashton of StitchBee (a women's clothing boutique) managed to do it though (under the exact same circumstances that make me think it's too difficult) and today I'm excited to share this beautiful maxi dress from her boutique with you!  This dress is non-maternity and it's the prettiest periwinkle/powder blue color and I'm pretty sure I'm going to live in it this summer.  It's so comfy and makes me feel almost ethereal, which is saying a lot when you're 25 weeks pregnant :)  I'm not even typically a maxi dress kind of girl, but I'm obsessed with this one!  I also love this bell sleeve and tassels shift dress and this fun pink tassel necklace.

Kristi has 2 children under 3 (the cutest little blond boy and girl you've ever seen), she's married to a Major in the Army (like I am), and they are currently in the process of moving from Ft. Leavenworth to their next assignment...yet she still manages to run StitchBee and make it look easy!  She has dressed lots of us mommas here on Ft. Leavenworth (she hosts pop-up shops in her home and at local events), but she also sells an impeccably curated collection of clothing and accessories online.  If you love cute clothes and like supporting small businesses, "mompreneurs," and military families, then you've got to check out StitchBee!

outfit details:

dress: StitchBee (c/o) | espadrilles (super cute and comfy!) | oval barrette (my new favorite) | basket

Thanks for the dress, Kristi!  I love it and I'm in awe of what you do :)

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