Maternity Jeans

Yesterday I talked about why I’m not buying maternity clothing (minus my maternity jeans), and so today I thought I would talk to you about the 3 pairs of jeans that I’ve been living in/rotating these days, and why I love them all so much!

First things first, I’m pretty tall (5’10), so most maternity jeans I could find at stores like Target are always too short, even if they’re the skinny jeans. I found 2 pairs at J.Crew (on sale!), and had one major splurge from Shopbop.

One thing I’ve learned during my pregnancies is that you don’t have to give up on your personal style for 9 months, you just have to make some minor adjustments that still make you look & feel your best throughout your entire pregnancy. If you make these adjustments, then you’ll learn to embrace all of the wonderful changes that are taking place a whole lot better.

If you’re expecting, happy shopping!

Maternity Pull-on toothpick jeans
maternity-jeans_jcrew_chalk
These look and feel like your basic white jeans. The only thing you have to get used to is there are no front pockets! I’m a big believer in wearing white after Labor Day; therefore, I snagged these up knowing I’d wear them thru the entire pregnancy. Warning – if you have a small toddler at home, you’re bound to get handprints on them before going anywhere. That’s when my handy dandy Tide Stick comes into play!

Stretch Maternity matchstick jeans
maternity-denim_black_jcrew
These aren’t exactly the style I bought, but they look very similar to mine. I remember they were on sale for $35.00 this Summer. These are more of a straight fit, but are still cute, and they’re on sale! I wanted a pair of black skinny jeans for this Fall/Winter, so when I found the maternity toothpick skinny on sale, I snagged them up! Can’t wait to wear my pair with a crisp white button-up, loose blouses and chunky sweaters!

DL1961 Emma Maternity Jeans
emma-maternity-jeansThese were my splurge, but, the fit is impeccable, and I KNOW I’ll wear them home from the hospital and for a few months after I have our little one. I’m pretty sure I wear them at least 3 times a week (or more), so I feel like they’ve already paid for themselves. They’re cute dressed up or dressed down. While I did pay a little more than I’d like for these, they make me feel like a million bucks while pregnant, and that to me is worth every penny.

What pants/jeans do you love while pregnant?

Happy Tuesday, friends!
~KSSBelle

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Pregnancy: What I’m buying & why it’s not maternity

This might not sound totally normal to most, but I still haven’t brought down my maternity clothing from our attic from my first pregnancy, and I have 3 months left. I’m really happy about it, too. And, I hope I don’t have to, either. Sounds weird, I know, but at 6 months pregnant, I’ve gained 11 pounds, and I hope to only gain 10-12 lbs more. Now, I will admit, I did buy 3 pairs of maternity jeans (I’ll do a post on those as well) when I first found out I was pregnant. Most of my maternity pants were work attire related with my first pregnancy.  So, as of a few weeks ago, I’ve been strictly wearing those, but, I’m still in my normal size tops. Thank goodness. I know that won’t last forever, but I plan to make it last as long as possible.

In case you’re new to my blog, I gained WAY more weight than I’d like to admit with my first pregnancy. I know exactly why, too. I was working then (slammed every day, but on a side note: I LOVED my job), and the hubs and I ate takeout pretty much every single night with little to no exercise, because by the time I got home from work, the last thing I wanted to do was cook a gourmet meal. This pregnancy has been totally different & just as busy albiet in a different way. I’m still just as busy chasing a toddler/running a household, but I’ve completely changed my eating habits for the better.

After having our first baby,  my goal was to get down to my wedding weight again, and when I found out we were expecting our second baby, I actually had reached my goal! Yay!  So, ever since then I’ve been petrified of gaining anything more than the medical recommended weight gain during pregnancy which is between 20-25 pounds.

So, since I’m right on track to only gain the recommended amount, I’ve decided that I’m not going to buy maternity clothing, I’m going to buy clothing I’ll love, post baby. Not only does it keep me in check when I want to go grab a handful of candy corns, it also gives me something to look forward to after our little bundle of joy is here.

Below are a few things I’ve added to my closet for later, and a few things I’ve got my eye on that I’d love to buy as well.

Happy Shopping!

Edie Stripe Top
ruffle_stripe-top_jcrew
This top is darling. I love the classic blue & white stripe with the twist of a ruffle. I know I’ll wear this top on repeat after the baby is here for many years!

Ruffle Sleeve Top
ruffle-sweater_shopbop
I clearly have a weakness for ruffles (and peplum). This sweater is going to look so chic with white jeans post baby! I can’t wait to wear it this winter!

Bell Sleeve Blouse
bell-sleeve-blouse
Hands down, this top is a real winner if you’re expecting. I’m actually wearing this exact top right now, and it’s still has plenty of growing room, too. I also bought it in the navy. The peplum & the bell sleeve mix feels fresh for Fall. I wore this with my j.crew white maternity jeans to our preschool parent’s night, and felt like I was wearing a normal outfit! Snag it on sale, and it’s an even better buy for now and later, trust me.

Now, here’s what I’ve got my eye on as well…

Sailor Pants
sailor-pants
You can’t go wrong with these pants. I think the gold buttons add a classic finish to an otherwise ordinary looking pant. I know I’d wear these for many years.

Danny Turtleneck Dress
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This dress is timeless. I adore the feminine ruffle finish, and you can never go wrong with a turtleneck when it’s freezing outside. I’m just dreaming of days when it’s freezing outside again, clearly.

Wildcat Clutch 
wildcat-clutch
Hello Gorgeous! I’d love to add this to my date night clutch collection!

What are you loving lately? Are you dreaming of cooler, crisp mornings like I am? I had my first nonfat pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks on September 1st. And anyone who really knows me, knows that I don’t stop talking about Fall and all its’ glory until it’s here…

pumpkin-spice
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I also may or may not have already bought my winter coat for this year…oops! I blame it on the fact that if you don’t buy something when you see it, it’ll be gone before you know it. Trust me. And while I love blogging, and reading my favorite blogs, that’s the only downside to these blogs these days, things sell out so quickly. It’s great for the vendors though!

Have a happy Monday!
~KSSBelle

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Blackberry Crisp

I’ve fallen even more in love with blackberries this Summer, especially if I can pick them up at the local farmers’ market. Blackberries eaten alone or in a recipe are divine in our household. I’ve blogged awhile ago about my “Apple Crisp” recipe (given to me from a dear friend of mine); however, I decided to cut that recipe in half and make a few changes for the blackberry crisp.  My husband LOVES blackberries, so I surprised him one night with it on a whim, and now it’s his most requested dessert. It literally takes less me than 5 minutes to prepare, and you can still keep a close eye on your kids while making it! That’s my kind of recipe with an active toddler under my feet all day. It’s also a great dessert to bring to any gathering. It’s delicious, and gives you more “getting ready” time, too.

~ BLACKBERRY CRISP ~

image

1/2 Gallon fresh blackberries
(I feel like the local farmer’s market has the best flavor, but store bought works, too!)

Directions:
1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees, then grab your favorite 8×8 pan, no greasing necessary.
2. Wash all of the blackberries
3. Toss them into the bottom of your 8×8 pan
4. Add 2 teaspoons of water
5. Next, mix up the “crisp” topping

Crisp:
1 Cup flour
1 Cup sugar
1/2 Cup butter ( 1 full stick)

5. To save time, unwrap your stick of butter, place in a microwave safe bowl
(microwave for about 30 seconds, or until completely melted)
6. Next, add your flour and sugar to the melted butter in the same bowl.
7. Stir together until flour & sugar are completely coated in the melted butter.
8. Pour the crisp evenly over the blackberries

Bake for 30 minutes or until lightly golden brown (like the photo above). Your kitchen will smell heavenly, and your family will love this treat!

Sometimes, we serve it with whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Now, depending on what fruits are in season, I’ve made this with granny smith apples (just add cinnamon), peaches and I want to make it with blueberries next! If you have a bigger crowd to feed, you can double the fruit and crisp, and make it in an 11×13 dish, just bake it for about 45 minutes.

Enjoy!
~KSSBelle

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Hello Again!

Happy Weekend, Friends & “Hello!” again!

I know it seems as though I’ve taken a bit of a break from my blog, and you’d be correct, I have. Please know I’ve missed it terribly, but all for good reason, as we’re expecting our second twinkle toes in early January! We couldn’t be more excited and grateful for this little blessing! The first trimester was pretty tough, as in extreme exhaustion, so when my little one would nap, I would to…a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.

Good news for you guys, is that this time around I’m really not focusing on buying any maternity clothing, if I can’t help it. I have a lot leftover from my last pregnancy, as well as some hand me downs (thanks, Sis!). I’m still fitting in my non-maternity pants/shorts, tops and dresses at 4 months…thank goodness! We’ll see how long that lasts. ha!

So, I thought I would round up a few things that I’ve been loving lately for you!

Off the Shoulder Top – Tuckernuck
tnuck off the shoulder topI have this top in pink (you may have seen it on my Instagram), and LOVE IT. It’s so classic, and it’s a longer top. It might be too long to wear with shorts, but it’s perfect paired with white denim (what I wore on a date night recently!) and skinny pants of any kind! Such a fun & flirty top. It’s also got a lot of growing room for the belly!;)

Linen Drawstring Trousers
loft linen pantsThese pants are so comfortable and chic. I typically wouldn’t buy anything orange; however, they go great with a lot of my tops, and the relaxed look is really nice for Summer.

Factory Graphic floral one-piece swimsuit
J.crew Factory Floral Suit
This was my first swimsuit from j.crew factory, and it didn’t disappoint. In the years past, I’ve always bought my suits from J.Crew. I keep them forever because they’re that good. This suit is perfect for a growing belly. It’s my first one-piece in a LONG time, and I love it, especially while chasing a toddler!:) The bright colors/print just makes me happy as well!

Off-the-shoulder dress – J.Crew
j.crew floral dress
I’ve had my eye on this dress for awhile now, and may have to get it. I love the off-the-shoulder dress look, as well as the print, but I worry I won’t be able to wear it that much longer this Summer.

Voluspa ‘Maison Blanc – Gardenia Candle
Gardenia candle
This candle has made my kitchen smell amazing. The scent reminds me of my childhood. My parents have a screened in porch, and I can remember endless conversations with my parents while smelling the gardenias in bloom right outside off of the porch. It really is the little things in life that matter the most.

What are you loving this Summer?

don't overthink
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Have a great weekend!
~KSSBelle

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My “Momiform” for Summer

Happy Wednesday, Friends!

I hope you’re all doing well, and are trying to stay cool during this heat wave. It’s come WAY to early for my liking, but I guess Mother Nature didn’t ask me. So, cheers to surviving it in style, right?!

Below are a few of my “momiform” favorites/staples for this time of year. I may have traded my high heels (except for date nights) in for flat sandals or sneakers, and every day showers for dry shampoo, but that doesn’t mean we can’t look good while raising our little ones. Everything here is machine washable for anything that may spill on you, etc.
Who’s with me?

Happy Shopping!

 Linen Blouse
Lace Linen Top_jcrew
This top is really pretty, and it’s lightweight. I love a good blouse year round, but especially in the Summer. I like the 3/4 sleeve length too. It would be perfect with a pair of bright shorts and flats. It would also look great with a pair of crisp, white jeans.

Loft IKat Riviera Shorts 
ikat shorts
I love this ikat print. It’s classic and goes with pretty much any Summer blouse in my closet. I really like the Riviera shorts because of the 4″ inch length. Plus, I’m 5/10 and refuse to wear anything shorter with kids. This style comes in so many fun prints and patterns every year. I would be embarrassed to tell you the number of pairs I already own. They’re that good.

Modern Kick Crop Jeans 
kick crop jeans
These jeans are so chic. I love the crop look for Summer. They pair really well with flats or even a kitten heel. These are a “must have” in my closet.

Gingham Split Neck Shell
gingham top
This top is much cuter in person. I tried it on last weekend, and took it home with me. It is slightly longer in the back which is nice. No crop tops with kids. This is perfect with shorts, white jeans, and the list goes on.

Bow Flats
bow flats_target
These have adorable and affordable written all over them. I always invest in at least 2 new pairs of flat sandals from Target every Summer. They look cute, but if they get worn out by the end of the season, I don’t feel badly about tossing them out. These would be easy to run after a toddler on the playground in, if needed. They also just so happen to look like a Kate Spade pair. Well done, Target, well done.

Jack Rogers Jelly Sandals
jack rogers jelly
These are so fun, affordable and flat. They come in a million different colors, and you can’t ruin them in the backyard, on the playground or running errands.

St. Anne Tote
Barrington Tote_StAnne
The St. Anne tote is perfect year round. I have two now. One is a baby bag, and one standard St. Anne tote. They’re perfect with kids, as I recently had a Chick fil a milkshake split on mine by accident, and it was completely wiped off in minutes, and good as new again. They are completely chic, hold everything you need, clean off easily, and you can monogram it. What gets better than that? My designer handbags/totes are in the closet unless it’s a date night/girls night out for now.

Loft Studs
loft_studs
I love a great pair of statement earrings; however when you’re toting the kiddos around with a random tantrum of tugging, you want to have a great pair of classic studs in your ears, trust me. Again, the statement earrings are still around, but are reserved for date nights or outings if Daddy is around to help. My go-to is a perfect pair of pearl earrings, but it’s nice to switch it up with a pretty gemstone pair every now and then.

So, these are some of my staples in my closet for surviving the heat, raising kiddos and still looking chic. What is your “momiform?”

Have a great day, friends!
~KSSBelle

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Happy Favorites Lately

Happy Wednesday, Friends!

I thought I would share some of what I would call “happy favorites” of mine as of late.
I love hearing what other bloggers are loving lately, and it’s always best to hear it from real people, not just believing the marketing. Believe me, I worked in marketing for 9 years, and I LOVE our industry, but real customers sharing their “tried and true” favorites out in the world, is so much better. I am becoming a big believer in reading reviews, especially when it comes to sizing, which in the past, I never used to take the extra time to do. Crazy to think I didn’t. Better late than never, right?

J Brand Skinny Jeans
j brand jeans
These jeans ROCK; however, prepare yourself, the price might bring your jaw to the floor. Now, if you can get past the pain of pressing purchase, you will thank me. I literally want to wear them everyday. Literally. I’ve always been very loyal to Citizen jeans, but J Brand fits so perfectly, and they never stretch out. I love the length (I’m 5/10). If they weren’t so expensive I would own 20 pairs. I think I’m going to need a jean budget now…

Living Proof Shampoo & Conditioner (Full)

Living Proof Shampoo & Conditioner
Ok, I promise I have some cheap favorites coming up for you in this post. This one is again, a bit on the expensive side; however, so worth it. I buy it through amazon with prime (thank goodness!). I typically wash my hair every 2 days (Mom life!), so by the second day, my hair is always limp, and it drives me crazy. (It’s apparently a short drive, as my Dad says! Ha!) I blow dry and straighten my hair after I wash it, and with this shampoo/conditioner it gives me the fullness/body I want, even after using my straightener. It smells so good too! Trust me, it will be a good investment.

ENGLISH FACTORY
english Factory
This brand is so chic. The blouse above was my first purchase of many, and I’m in love. The fit it TTS, and you just can’t beat the design/prices. Things get sold out quickly, so if you see something you like, there’s a good chance, it will be sold out next time to you go to the site. I would order it fast my friends. I can’t say enough good things about this brand!

Baby Lips
Baby Lips
$2.79! Finally, something really good and inexpensive! I do not wear lipstick. I have tried it, and yuck. I am a lip gloss girl, and this adds the perfect amount of moisture before applying my lip gloss. It’s also great to wear alone as well. I have to thank Bradley for this one, she’s one of my all time favorite bloggers. Her style is impeccable. If you haven’t read her blog before, I promise it will become one added to your favorites!

Trader Joe’s Macarons
trader joes macarons
via

These are such a great, inexpensive Spring/Summer dessert.
We eat them year round they’re so good.

 the extra mile
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 Have a happy evening!
~KSSBelle

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Spring! Spring! Spring!

Happy Spring, Everyone!

Our wedding anniversary is the first day of Spring, so that makes this time of year extra, extra special for us!!

Easter is this weekend, and I can’t wait to see our little one see the Easter basket, and hunt for eggs after church! So excited!

spring flowers
via

I took a bit of a break from blogging in the last month, but I’m back! And, I’m oh so happy to be back!

There are so many great Spring finds for your closet and home out there right now, so I thought I would do a quick round up of some of my favorites!

Happy Shopping!

Swing Pintuck Dress
ON swing crepe dress
You can’t go wrong with an easy, breezy dress like this for Spring. I just added this to my closet, and I can’t wait to wear it on warmer, sunny days.

Sleeveless Flounce Top
jcrew flounce top
Polka dots are one of my favorite prints, so this one was definitely added to my closet. This is perfect worn with a blazer or alone. It’s on major sale right now, too!

English Factory Dress
English Factory Dress
This dress is even more gorgeous in person! It’s so soft, and the fit is true to size. I think I’m going to have this one on repeat this Spring/Summer!

Loft Off the shoulder blouse
loft eyelet offs
This is so so cute. It think it would be a great date night top. Right now, it’s 30% off. Better order it fast!

 Diamond Lace Swing Top
Loft lace top
This top is even more beautiful in person. I actually wore it on our 6 year anniversary date night last weekend. I styled it with my navy skinny dress pants from jcrew and nude suede pumps (kicking myself for not taking a photo of us for instagram!) I might have to get it in white as well. It’s that good!

St. Anne Spring Monogram Tote
Barrington totes
I’m so in love with the new St. Anne Tote Spring styles from Barrington Gifts. I love the baby bag I’ve had for a few years now, but this is the design (above) I’m leaning towards now! So many fun color options to choose from. I’m pretty sure I’ll be redesigning it again and again, but I’m definitely making it my new Spring bag!

 Pillow Flamingo Sheet Set
flamingo sheets
These are A.D.O.R.A.B.L.E!!! I would put them in our guest room where we have 2 twin beds. Such a happy print. Don’t you think?

Blue and White
blue and white
I’ve also had a lot of luck lately in finding more blue and white for our house at HomeGoods! I stocked up this past weekend for our dining room sideboard (found 4 ginger jars/vases in various sizes, all under $30!). I have them in our kitchen, den, dining room & master bedroom. To say I’m obsessed is a bit of an understatement!

What are you loving for Spring so far?

Have a happy Tuesday, Friends!
~KSSBelle

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Happy February + Rose Quartz

Happy February, Everyone! It seems a little bit crazy that January is already gone, but that’s life in the fast lane, so welcome February!

243e74f0196ca2cfed74f2ea7fad36f9
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Since one of the colors of the year is Rose Quartz and this is the month where anything pink is appropriate (always appropriate in my book!) I thought I would round up some things that I’m loving lately in this pretty shade of pink!

Happy Shopping!

Secretary Blouse
jcrew factory - rose
I just love this feminine top. I was sold on not only the color, but also anything with a bow gets my vote. It comes in other colors as well, but this one is my favorite.

Ruffle Collar Camisole
ruffle cami - rose
You can never have too many layering pieces. And, I can never turn down a great ruffle top. Ruffles always look tailored, and instantly make your look more refined. Those are a few good things in my book. This one would be great alone for a date night, or worn with a blazer/cardigan for day. Pretty & perfect.

Light Pink Coco Earrings
light_pink_coco_earrings
These earrings will go with anything and everything you wear. I’m convinced we all need a pair. Aren’t you?

Ryan Sunglasses
ryan sunglasses
Oh, J.Crew, how I love you…this pair will definitely be found in my handbag right in time for Spring. Don’t you think?

Elsie Table Lamp
elise table lamp
I would love this lamp on my desk. It’s simple design is classic
and modern all in one.

Lily Avenue Carrigan
lilly - kate spade
The scallop trim on this Lily bag is gorgeous. I wouldn’t mind adding this one to my collection. Kate really knows her stuff well, or at least me.

Have a wonderful Monday, Friends!
~KSSBelle

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A Short Break, Recipe + Inspiration

T.G.I.F!
Are you as happy to see Friday as I am? I am so excited to simply relax with my family!!

short break
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I know that I’ve taken an unexpected, short break from the blogging world; however, when your house is under renovation (aka…the two rooms that you LIVE in with your toddler and puppy, our kitchen and den) it can take a toll on thinking you can get anything “extra” done.  The good news is that we’re back to normal as of today! Hip, hip hooray! And, please know that I can’t wait to show you guys our updates very soon, too! I honestly feel like I’m living in a dream!

I’m thinking of making this recipe this weekend that Christina posted. Does it not look amazing? Her recipes don’t disappoint.

Lastly, I always like to leave a little “inspiration” for you at the end of each post!
patience

Enjoy your weekend, friends!
~KSSBelle

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Happy Weekend!

cozy sweater
via
I’m so glad to see Friday! What are your plans for this weekend?

I think (fingers crossed) we’ll back to normal around our house for the weekend. Well, that is until next Tuesday when our granite gets delivered, and then our backsplash will go in after that…I’m literally giddy with excitement! It’s so worth the disruption in our routine/life. I’m pretty sure my husband’s just as giddy he’s not the one doing all of the painting.
I’ll also be crossing off one of my “to-do’s on my list. Thank you notes. I was raised to write thank you notes for every birthday and Christmas. So, I’ll be tackling our Christmas thank you notes this weekend. I always feel so relieved once I’ve taken the time to thank those who put thought and time into a gift for me. It doesn’t take long at all, and I know it’s appreciated. Then, I feel I can enjoy the gift that much more. Do you still write thank you notes, too?

Have a happy weekend, friends!
~KSSBelle

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