Friday, April 21, 2017

Nautical Dream

I fell in love with this blazer the second that I saw it hanging up at the Banana Republic outlet store. The sleeves fit my freakishly long arms perfectly and I was sold on the spot. Even though the blazer below is the one that I ended up purchasing, I've had my eye on a couple of different nautical blazers for some time. I especially love this royal blue and white blazer from Zappos and this fitted striped blazer from Talbots.
And can we talk about this tangerine dream of a skirt that I bought from The Limited last spring? Can we also talk about how I won't be able to fit into it for much longer and how I can't link directly to it because The Limited closed it's doors? *Insert bawling emoji here.* But never fear! I found quite a few look-a-like tangerine pencil skirts that are just as perfect. First up is this gorgeous skirt from Macy's  and this chic pencil skirt from JCPenney's (both under $30!). And let's not forget this tall drink of water from Lord & Taylor.
The rest of the outfit details are linked below, including my current favorite cuff from HG Boutique. Have an amazing weekend, friends! 

BLAZER [Banana Republic Outlet// Exact here // Other cute options hereherehere
BLOUSE [The Limited] // Almost exact here // Similar hereherehere, & here
BELT [Forever 21]  // Similar here here // Super cute sparkly version
PENCIL SKIRT [The Limited] // Similar hereherehere, & here
BALLET FLATS 
[Target] // Exact here // The real Chloé pair here
BRACELET [Hello Gorgeous Boutique] // Exact here

Monday, April 17, 2017

Oh, Bébé ! (Girl or Boy?!)

Since the moment we found out we were expecting, I had a gut feeling about the gender of our little bébé. Call it mother's intuition, or in my case, a semi-scientific guesstimate of the likelihood of male versus female sperm making it through, given that I knew almost the exact date of the act and conception (is my nerdiness showing yet?). 
But you don't really know until it's confirmed, right? Keep scrolling to find out if my guess was correct. 



I seemed to have guessed correctly because Bébé Back is a...



BOY!



And he's already got his Spartan gear ready to go. ;)


Sweet baby, we can't wait until you're here!

OUTFIT DETAILS >>
NECKLACE [Hello Gorgeous Boutique] // Exact here
BELT [Forever 21]  // Similar here here // Super cute sparkly version 
DRESS [JCPenney] // Similar blue pleated maxi dresses herehere & here
BÉBÉ BACK'S SNEAKERS [BuyBuy Baby] // Exact here

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Five Month Anatomy Scan + Biopsy For Breast Cancer

The last thing that you want to hear from your OB at 5 months pregnant is "It might be cancer or it might be nothing. Let's send you to the radiologist." 
And that about sums up the last week and a half of our lives.
Backtrack to about three weeks ago to a night like any other night,  I sat on the couch marveling at my newly found boobies (which were my first symptom of pregnancy and what prompted me to take a test in the first place) when I felt something. A small node, the size of a lentil sat embedded in my right breast.
For a few days I didn't say anything to anyone. I thought that it was probably my imagination and a normal part of the changes that accompany pregnancy. I did a bit of Googling and diagnosed myself with a possible blocked milk duct. But if I was being totally honest with myself, did I really even know where milk ducts were located? How deep in the breast did they reside? Could they even get blocked this early on? I couldn't really tell from the anatomy pictures and info that came up in my search. 
A few days passed and I could still feel the node. Because of the history of breast cancer in my family, I didn't want to alarm anyone if it was nothing. But I was also to the point where I was growing more concerned by the day. So I asked John to take a look, and yup, he could definitely feel the lump. Damn. It wasn't all in my head.
We decided to bring it up with my OB at our upcoming 18 week anatomy scan. The scan went perfectly. Baby had two arms, two legs, a developing brain, all the chambers of the heart, and the spine looked good. Afterwards we met with the doctor and he asked if we had any additional questions. So I took a deep breath and told him about the lump that I found. 
Let me stop here and say how I saw this appointment playing out in my head: I thought that the doctor would do a breast exam and tell me that it was absolutely nothing and that it was just a normal part of pregnancy. Or even better, I thought that he would tell me that he couldn't even feel the lump.
This is what really happened: The doctor did a breast exam and felt the lump right away. He then asked about the history of breast cancer in my family and because of all of those factors, he immediately referred me to a breast cancer radiologist. He said it may be nothing. Or it may be something, and he didn't want us to miss anything.

So we left that appointment elated that our baby was healthy, but overwhelmed with the fact that I would have to get worked up for possible breast cancer. After everything that we've been through in the last year, this was NOT what we wanted to be thinking about. We wanted to be happy and celebratory about our baby, not worried about possible cancer. 
It took about five days for the radiology referral to go through and for my appointment to be scheduled. Coincidentally, my mom had planned to visit me last week while John was traveling out of the country for work. So our week of shopping for nursery items turned into a week of shopping for nursery items and also going back and forth to the hospital for breast scans and a biopsy. Good times. 

Walking into that biopsy appointment at the cancer center with my pregnant belly was one of the most emotionally wrecking things I've ever gone through. It just all felt wrong. The hospital staff was so kind and accommodating. But being congratulated on your pregnancy and then told to lay down so the radiologist could numb you with a long thick needle and cut out samples of a lump inside your breast was just surreal. 
Because my biopsy appointment was on a Friday, the results took a few days to come back. 
But finally, I received a phone call this morning with good news: My test results came back negative.
The lump was something called Psuedoangiomatous stromal hyperplasia (PASH), a benign mass that can mimic cancer.

Thank God Thank God Thank God. I am so incredibly relieved and so incredibly grateful that we know it's benign and nothing to worry about.

So why am I sharing this? Because I want anyone reading this to be aware of this condition. I want to encourage you to perform self breast exams (even during pregnancy!) and to speak to your doctor if you feel anything different in your breasts. As my doctor and radiologist said, this could have been something. And from everything that I've read, finding lumps during pregnancy is even more concerning because the high levels of hormones could possibly help cancerous cells proliferate even faster. The sooner you know, the sooner you can take action.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

MINT GREEN + ROYAL BLUE

The weather here in Charlotte has been inching toward spring and I could not be happier.
And if you're like me, once the weather starts turning, you can't wait to pull out fresh springy colors!

This necklace was actually the inspiration behind this whole outfit. I love all the bright happy colors that are incorporated into it. I can't wait to style it with something pink! But for now, I stuck to blues and greens and pops of gold, like these Sam & Libby ballet flats that I recently picked up at Target. I didn't know this until later, but apparently they are dupes of these super expensive Chloe flats. Who knew?! Yeeeep I think I'll stick to my $20 Target pair for now. ;)

My top is old from Flourish Boutique. Flourish is no longer open, but I did find these pretty mint green long sleeve blouses here and here and this adorable short sleeve version here. My pencil skirt is from The Limited (of course!) and since they are no longer open either, I found quite a few look-a-likes, linked below. My favorites are this very similar skirt from Talbots, this scalloped skirt (also from Talbots), and this great fit and flare skirt from Tahari.

Is it feeling like spring where you are? I hope it is!

NECKLACE [Hello Gorgeous Boutique] // Exact here
BELT [Forever 21]  // Similar here here // Super cute sparkly version 
TOP [Flourish Boutique] // Similar here here // Love this short sleeve option
PENCIL SKIRT [The Limited] // Similar herehere, & here // Adore this scalloped version & this flared version
BALLET FLATS [Target// Exact here // The real Chloe pair // LOVE these Tory Burchs // Cute dainty bow ones here here // Great textured silver ones here


Tuesday, March 21, 2017

SPRING FLORALS

Yesterday officially marked the first day of spring. Hooray! Since I spent most of yesterday in gym clothes, I thought I'd make up for it today. Because florals for spring? Groundbreaking. (Devil Wears Prada lovers, you're all over that reference, right?!) 
And to be honest, I'm more than happy to put on a pencil skirt and let this baby bump do it's thing because almost none of my old pants fit. And by "almost none" I mean ALL. Ha. But that means baby is growing right? Speaking of the little bug, I have my 18 week ultrasound later this week and I can't wait to see him/her again. It's been almost a month and a half since my last one and I just want to make sure baby is okay in there. Pregnancy after a miscarriage is something else you guys. The anxiety, the worry, the hand-wringing. I plan on writing a post dedicated entirely to that topic soon.

But anywho! Let's talk about the outfit below. My top and skirt are from my favorite work clothes store, The Limited, may she rest in eternal peace (!!!!). But I love this similar purple shell and this pencil skirt from Express. My blazer is old from Forever 21, but I found a ton of great similar options which I linked to below. I think my favorite is this navy floral blazer from Modcloth. My pink pumps are old too. They are from that amazing Christian Siriano and Payless collab a few years ago. (One of you loves just brought it to my attention in the comments below that Christian is STILL collaborating with Payless on a limited basis. So everyone RUN, don't walk to Payless because his designs are gorg!) My favorite look-a-likes for the pink pumps are these suede Sam Edelmans and these Nine West kitten heels. And last but not least, my necklace is from my boutique. :)

OUTFIT DETAILS below //

NECKLACE [Hello Gorgeous Boutique] // Exact here
TOP [The Limited] // Similar hereherehere, & here
PENCIL SKIRT [The Limited] // Similar herehere, & here
FLORAL BLAZER [Forever 21] // Similar hereherehereherehere 
PUMPS 
[Payless] // LOVE these Sam Edelmans // Similar here here // Great kitten heels here here


Friday, March 17, 2017

SCALLOPED PINK DRESS + UTILITY VEST

Top o' the mornin' to ya'! Since I am approximately 0% Irish and not a huge drinker, I've never gotten too involved with St. Paddy's Day activities. But incorporating a little bit o' green into my outfit? That I will happily do!

So this is me using my St. Paddy's green to accentuate this perfect pink scalloped dress from Catch Bliss Boutique. I love this dress for so many reasons, the first being that it's obviously adorable and SO comfy, and the second being that I've been able to transition it seamlessly into a maternity dress. I just had to cinch the waist in a little higher with a belt and BAM, #BumpStyle. ;) 
I've worn this dress a couple of times in the past few weeks and have styled it many different ways. But I think this layered look may be my favorite. The pink/green/grey/taupe is a great neutral pallet and also a nice transition into spring!

For reference, I'm wearing a size small in the Arianna dress. The dress is very forgiving and falls perfectly, even on my 17 week preggo belly. So if you're between sizes, I wouldn't worry about having to size up. 


DRESS [c/o Catch Bliss Boutique] // Exact here
GREY CARDIGAN 
[Marshall's] // Similar hereherehere, & here
UTILITY VEST 
[c/o Avery Lane Boutique] // Similar herehere, & here
TAUPE BOOTS 
[Fergalicious, DSW] // Similar hereherehere, & here
GOLD BELT [Forever 21] // Similar herehere, & here
NECKLACE + CUFFS [Hello Gorgeous Boutique] // Exact necklace here, Exact cuffs here & here

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Hello, Baby!

You guys, I had mad plans for our pregnancy announcement. I pinned so many cute photo shoot ideas and spent hours daydreaming about how we would perfectly announce that after many months of prayer and waiting, John and I are happily expecting our rainbow baby. 

But today while trying to find a shirt that fits and finding this hilarious one that my mother-in-law bought for me before our Italy trip this past summer, it came to me that this is the perfect way to announce our perfectly imperfect reality. Our half-opened moving boxes, the ladder in the background, my lack of makeup and our general lack of bathroom items in our new house (hence the very trendy blue solo cup/toothbrush holder), and of course my baby bump. 

So here I am, and here we are. Baby Back is due this August and we are absolutely over the moon!

P.S. #BumpStyle, here I come!! ;)