We’ve got an Indian Summer in full effect over here. This past week has brought us temperatures in the nineties & lots of humidity. (I’m not complaining! Give me all the summery weather.)
We’re nowhere near ready to be dressed in sweaters, jeans, and boots — but now that September is here, I’ve definitely got autumn on the brain. Thoughts of pumpkin spice & Halloween are dancing through my head. I’ve been dreaming of fall fashion, especially for the babies, and I’ve started to build up their fall wardrobes from my favorite small businesses & thrift shops.
I recently purchased a couple of gorgeous autumn bonnets for Marina. I’ve got my eye on some adorable bright tights in colors like mustard yellow, red, & pink. She’s going to look so sweet in tights paired with a dark skirt & beautiful cardigan. Have I mentioned how much I love having a little girl to dress up? Kids fall fashion is the best. I’ve got to start looking for some more stylish warm weather hats for Roman, too. His signature fedoras are all made for summer.
One more thing, have you started looking at Halloween costumes yet? Or am I the only crazy one doing that? I’ve found so much adorable Halloween costume inspiration on Pinterest recently. There are a bunch of kids fancy dress ideas online at Tesco, too, in case you’re starting to look.
Where are your favorite places to shop for fall fashion — kids or for yourself? I’d love to hear what is inspiring you for the upcoming season.
We’ve got a drooler over here, friends! I completely forgot just how much drool a tiny baby can produce. Marina is constantly chomping on her hands and she has been soaking through her shirts like nobody’s business. I just can’t keep up. So when the folks over at Groovi Gee reached out about trying their adorable & stylish bandana bibs, I knew it was fate.
Groovi Gee is a UK based company that carries cute and funky accessories for your little ones. They come in a bunch of styles, there’s something for everyone. You can check them all out here.
I love that each Groovi Gee bib comes with two sets of snaps which makes the bibs adjustable. The same bibs fit both Marina and Roman. It’s perfect because heaven knows that for every drooling mess that Marina makes, Roman makes an even bigger mess while eating. The bibs are super cute, but they’re functional too — saving Mama lots of time spent cleaning messes off of little clothes.
If you’re looking for adorable, funky, and stylish for a little one in your life, check out Groovi Gee. In addition to bibs, they’ve got some other fun accessories, too. You can also follow along with Groovi Gee on Facebook.
This post is in partnership with Groovi Gee. As always, thank you for supporting the businesses that help to make this blog possible.
When I found out that I was having a boy during my first pregnancy, I was shocked and scared. I never imagined myself as the mother of a boy. I only ever had a sister and I just wasn’t very used to boys. I knew nothing about boys. I was always a girls’ girl. I never even had many male friends. How am I going to raise a boy?, I would wonder.
But then Roman was born and it all just fell into place. It seemed like the most natural thing in the world and I ended up loving it. I fell so in love with my little guy and I was grateful for his perfect boyness. Even dressing & accessorizing him was a world of fun that I hadn’t anticipated.
The truth was, though, that I had always wanted a girl. But then when I actually had a boy, I wasn’t at all disappointed. When I found out that I was pregnant again, I was completely open to whatever nature had in store for us. There was still some small part of me that really hoped for a little girl — “one of each” — as they say, but I was convinced that I would have another boy and I was completely okay with that. I imagined my little “brothers” with love & excitement.
I will never forget the feeling that I got when the ultrasound tech told me that I was having a girl. My stomach dropped, roller coaster style. I felt like I was falling. I got dizzy and my jaw literally dropped. I covered my mouth. Of course it was always a possibility… but for some reason I was just so convinced that I was having another boy. I kept questioning her and to be honest, I didn’t fully believe it even after all of her reassuring.
Then, on March 20th, 2015, I held my little girl in my arms for the first time and whatever doubt was left in my heart melted away. There she was, all girl from the start.
After Roman was born, and we outgrew the trials of his early newborn days, I fell head-over-heels madly in love with motherhood. I was so happy with my baby boy, that I forgot all about my longtime dream of a baby girl. But then, when I held her in my arms, it all came rushing back to me. The realization of a dream that I had held in my heart forever. She was truly the piece of my life that I had always been missing, always been wishing for.
Over the past four and a half months, my little Marina Grace has been amazing me every single day because somehow she gets sweeter and more beautiful with each passing day. Every morning she wakes up and looks up at me from where she rests in my arms with the biggest, brightest smile. And somehow, that smile gets bigger and brighter every day. There is a light, a joy, and a wildness in her eyes — something unnameable that I have never seen before in my life. She is truly something special, I know this for certain.
There are so many wonderful things about having a daughter, least of which is dressing her. I’m not ashamed to admit how purely obsessed I am with baby girl clothing & accessories. (I mean, how could you not be really?) One day, she will develop a style all her own and I will embrace & support whatever that may be. I will always encourage my children to be themselves in any and every way that their hearts direct them. But until then, I do the choosing and it’s just everything!
I recently stumbled upon the Bare Babies Etsy shop and I’m just in love with all of the gorgeous, handmade, organic clothing that the shopkeeper, Karen, has on offer. So far Marina has two of her gorgeous sets — the outfits featured in this post — and I just can’t get enough of them. (Here is the lilac, deer legging set.)
Karen’s work is perfection — well-made, adorable, stylish, and organic. Everything that you could want for your little one. I’m truly excited to be partnered with Bare Babies to share these little outfits with you. Be sure to follow along with Bare Babies on Facebook & Instagram to keep up with all of the sweetness.
It all started with wanting to see what her mom was doing. She was 6. She’d sit in back of her mother’s sewing machine and take out pins as she sewed away. Her mother said she really never ever taught her daughter; she learned from osmosis. But she taught her. And what she learned stayed with her.
She kept sewing throughout childhood, college, and after. Right when she got married, she began working for Ann Taylor Loft. That one place made a huge difference in her skill. It was really the jump start to sewing a different way. It was at this point she began altering patterns. She wasn’t happy with just a sewing pattern as it was. She wanted to create the kind of clothing that she was selling at the Loft. She wanted darts, pleats, gathers, and tucks. Lining was essential, and she found this all exhilarating. Her husband thought she should start making her own patterns. That was 15 years ago. So with her sketching and his help in graphics, they created Jilly patterns. She doesn’t want to ever stop making clothing, so she continues to sew garments. Custom made. She loves it.
Recently, Jilly Atlanta has made its way into a shop on the westside of Atlanta. It is called Crafted Westside. It is home to many local artists. They pride themselves in delivering quality handmade items from individuals around the Atlanta area. It is “shop local” at its finest. There you can see and touch Jilly’s ready-made garments (and a few other things) for yourself. If you are not in the Atlanta-area, you can check out Jilly’s incredible work in her shop, Jilly Atlanta, on Etsy.
The words above were written by Jilly herself and I changed them a bit to fit this post. I stumbled upon her gorgeous work a few months ago & fell completely in love. The beautiful bonnet that Marina is wearing in this post was handmade by Jilly.
Over the years, I’ve heard the phrase “heirloom-quality” used to describe certain things. I’ve never used the phrase myself and I really never gave it much thought. Then this bonnet arrived in the mail. As I held it in my hand and looked it over, I thought, “This is a piece that is so well-made, it will stay in our family for generations. This. This is heirloom-quality.” Jilly herself never used that phrase to describe her work. In my conversations with her, she has been nothing if not incredibly kind & humble. However, I am happy to report that her work is, in fact, heirloom-quality. I am grateful to be able to feature it here and I look forward to purchasing more pieces from Jilly’s shop as my children grow.
Throughout the year, bloggers (myself included) often share gift guides. I tend to like these guides because they give me ideas; introduce me to new brands & products; and frankly, I’m a voyeur — I love to see what other people are buying. However, gift guides often give me pause for a couple of reasons. First, does the blogger only want me to buy an item because she is going to make a commission off of the sale? And second, in the age of Pinterest & Etsy, just because a blogger “loves” an item doesn’t mean that she has ever actually used it or even seen it in-person.
That said, this is my series called, Things We Love (and USE). The emphasis being that these are things that we both love and actually use on a regular basis. Here are a few things that are currently making our lives a little bit easier, comfier, and more beautiful.
1. Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Texturizing Sea Salt Spray — I’ve been wanting to try a sea salt spray on my hair for awhile. I love those beachy waves that seem to be all the rage, but I don’t have time to play with a curling iron these days. I’d read that sea salt hair sprays worked wonders and were simple to use and apply. I picked up this one after reading some positive reviews.
When I first started using it, I was applying it to my wet hair, straight out of the shower. That was a total flop. It didn’t do much of anything. Later I tried applying it to my dry hair with the notion that my hair would be more absorbent when dry. I’m so grateful I thought of it because then it worked like a charm. After my shower, I waited until my hair air dried. Then I evenly sprayed all sections of my hair with the salt spray and combed it through to take out tangles. Finally I scrunched my hair a bit with my hands to create the “waves.” When my hair dried it was soft and wavy, just like it is when I come from a dip in the ocean.
My favorite thing about this product is the scent. It’s a gorgeous vanilla smell and I can’t stop sniffing my hair when I’ve got it in. I will purchase this stuff again primarily for that reason. Also, back when Roman’s hair was still long, I’d give his hair a few sprays before combing his hair to the side. It helped to keep his bangs out his face and it’s more toddler-friendly than shampoo or gel. It’s not a super strong hold, but it did the trick.
2. Fisherman Sandals (Stride Rite) — When the weather got warm, I was eager to find Roman a good pair of summer shoes. I can’t be bothered with shoe laces and Roman can’t seem to keep flip flops on his little feet. I did a little digging and came across these sandals by Stride Rite. They’re perfect and I adore them. They look so cute on him and pair well with both casual and more dressed up looks. Best of all they are incredibly durable — we do lots of exploring, hiking, and camping. They keep his feet cool enough for hot weather, but they also do a good job at protecting them too. He pretty much wears them every day and I imagine that he’ll be wearing them straight through to autumn. I will most likely buy him another pair of these once he outgrows them.
3. Mrs. Meyer’s Dish Soap (Radish) — I am the biggest Mrs. Meyer’s fan. I’ve been using the Mrs. Meyer’s cleaning spray and hand soap for awhile now and recently decided to give the dish soap a try. Once again, I was impressed. It works well and smells fantastic. It’s easy on my hands, too, and like all Mrs. Meyer’s products it’s free from harsh chemicals and full of plant-derived ingredients. I’ve definitely found my new dish soap of choice.
4. Kids Wayfarer Glasses (Rubber!) — Another thing that we decided to get for Roman when the warm weather hit was a pair of sunglasses. We had looked in a couple of children’s stores but we couldn’t find anything that looked “sturdy” enough to hold up to the rough & tumble life of a two-year-old. I decided to look on Amazon and I found these great rubber, Wayfarer-style sunglasses. We ordered them and they are perfect. They’re adorable, the colors are bright & fun, and they’re durable. Roman even stepped on them one time. One of the arms came off, but Matthew was able to repair them easily with a little screwdriver.
Here’s a shot of Roman wearing them a few weeks ago. In that shot, you can also see what Roman’s hair looked like styled with the sea salt spray mentioned above.
5. Nursing Bra (Hot Milk) — I’ve talked about nursing bras on this blog before. What can I say — they’re so critical when you’re a breastfeeding mama! A good nursing bra makes all the difference in the world. I’ve had the Morning Dawn-style bra from Hot Milk in my rotation for a couple of month’s now and I love it. It’s really difficult to find a nursing bra that is functional, beautiful, and comfortable — but this one checks all three of those boxes. It’s lovely.
That’s all for this edition of Things We Love and USE. Click here to check out my past lists in this series.
What are a few of the things that you are using and loving right now? I’d love to hear!