Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Spring Colors

As springtime rolls around, seeing vibrant pops of green outside just makes my heart flutter. Consequently, it makes me want to dress in clothes that are just as colorful as the landscape outside.

kate spade tory burch draper james

Most days, I'm wearing yoga pants or loungey shorts--no point in dirtying up my nice things if I'm just hanging around the house! Aida just hangs out in her pajamas. We're real casual around here.

kate spade tory burch draper james

However, when I do get out of the house, I take great care in putting an outfit together. Wearing cute (and what I hope are stylish) outfits was part of my personality before baby arrived, and it continues to be one of my favorite things to do--obviously, it doesn't happen that often, so when it does a photo shoot is necessary!

kate spade tory burch draper james

I built this whole outfit around these shoes from Nordstrom. I had my eye on them for several months, and finally took the plunge and bought them during a bonus points event.

kate spade tory burch draper james

I'm quite smitten with these shoes! I just feel like the trendiest gal around when I wear them, and I love Halogen's shoes in general. They always fit me comfortable, and my feet don't feel miserable when I've been wearing them for a few hours.

kate spade tory burch draper james nordstrom

I was pretty pleased that I was still able to wear this peplum top! My body has changed quite a bit since pregnancy, and I'm still trying to come to terms with that fact, so it's nice when I find I can still wear some of my pre-preggo clothes. (I bought this top almost three years ago at the Kate Spade outlet, so I've tried to link a few different tops.)

kate spade tory burch draper james

My pants are from J. Crew Factory and were probably one of my best purchases. They're thicker than a legging and look like a dress pant, but the waistband is elastic! And there was much rejoicing.

kate spade tory burch draper james

Although most of the time I carry around a diaper bag, I'll sometimes use one of my regular purses/totes if I'm heading out of the house by myself. I had used my Draper James tote the day before, and just didn't bother to switch everything back to the diaper bag.

kate spade tory burch draper james

Lastly, please note that Burt's Bees makes lipstick and it is the bee's knees! (Pun intended.) Get yourself to Target and get some (plus a million other things you don't need, amiright??).

kate spade tory burch draper james

What are your favorite items for spring?

This post contains affiliate links, and if you click on one and make a purchase, I make a commission. Thanks for supporting Thoroughly Modern!

All love,

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Motherhood Update

Well friends, as we like to say around here, this has been quite the "rufferee" of a few weeks. (Did you also beg your significant other to let you buy that pet costume during this past fall at Target? And did you never buy it but start using the term "rufferee" all the time? Me too!)

Poor Millie, she never gets to wear Halloween costumes! All pictures by Hannah Elise
Aida has been super fussy and we've had trouble getting her to fall asleep. She'll doze off in our arms, but once you lay her down on her back, she gets LICK and all hell breaks loose. ("Lick," meaning angry, another connotation invented by our household. Origin unknown.) Acid reflux was the culprit, and it seems to be getting a little better, with some baby Zantac and less dairy in my diet.

Motherhood is tough. I criticize myself on a daily basis when I feel like I'm not "productive,"--especially when it comes to putting together blog posts (I've been working on this one for two weeks). It certainly doesn't help when I read posts from another blogger, bragging about putting her baby on a "schedule" and sounding downright condescending towards moms who may not shower everyday, or wear something besides yoga pants. (Not showering everyday and wearing yoga pants was my life before baby, so why should that change?) Everyone around me tells me I'm doing a great job, everyone except one person, and I guess I should tell her to shut it and get to steppin' (that person is the demon voice in my head--read all about it in Amy Poehler's book).

Newborn Photos

And yet, just the other day, as I walked circles in the living room trying to soothe a fussy baby, I thought to myself, "we're just having a bad day," and without another thought I immediately corrected myself--no, this is not a bad day. Yes, sometimes this girl lets loose a pterodactyl cry that could wake the neighborhood. Yes, sometimes she wants to nurse all the time and I have to convince myself all over again to continue breastfeeding. But does that really make it a bad day? Even when we're having a tough time, we'll work things out, and maybe thirty minutes later she'll curl up into me, look up at my face with those beautiful eyes, and give me a great, big smile that makes my heart so full.

Newborn Photos

So, this is motherhood for me right now. Feeling exhausted and totally at the end of my rope one minute, then so full of joy and wondering how I ever deserved such a gift the next. I wouldn't change a thing.

All Love,

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Newborn Photos

I'm not big on photo shoots with professional photographers--sure, they look great and I always love the pictures, but it's just an extra expense that I find isn't necessary to have all the time. However, I knew for sure that I wanted some newborn photos. It is just much easier when you're an exhausted, first time parent to leave it to the professionals!

Newborn Photos

I noticed that a sorority sister, Hannah, did photography on the side, and I always loved the pictures she would share on Facebook, so I contacted her back at the end of summer and set things up. I'm so glad we connected, because she did such an amazing job, and was incredibly patient the whole time (especially as we tried to wrangle  Millie). If you're in the Northern Virginia area, I definitely recommend her--you can find her information at Hannah Elise Photography. 

Newborn Photos

During the photo shoot, Aida was a little fussy and basically refused to stay calm unless she had a pacifier. Didn't matter though, because we still got lots of great pictures!

Newborn Photos

At one point, we had to do a diaper change, and it worked out perfectly because Hannah was able to capture some of our favorite facial expressions!

Newborn Photos

Newborn Photos

And of course, we couldn't leave Millie out! We don't use the #FamilyofThreePlusMillie for nothin! No surprise, Millie was a little difficult to wrangle. Since Hannah was a visitor, Millie had to constantly check on her, then check back on Aida. So, Millie went back and forth, from one to the other, carrying her tennis ball just in case anyone wanted to play. It was almost impossible to get her to settle down for a photo, and I was worried we wouldn't get any, but luckily Hannah caught some great moments on camera!

Newborn Photos

Newborn Photos

Newborn Photos

It's obviously impossible for me to pick a favorite, and as much as I want to hang some around the house ASAP, I can't even decide which ones to get printed! Hannah also took some great detail pictures of the nursery, so I will be sharing those soon for Aida's nursery reveal.

How do you feel about hiring professional photographers? Worth it, or should you just DIY? As an exhausted parent of a newborn, it was definitely worth it!

All Love,

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Spring Wishlist

We've had quite a few days of glorious weather, and I'm so eager for spring to arrive and stay here for good! As usual, whenever the seasons change, I get the itch to go shopping, and it always seems to be strongest when spring arrives. I'm doing my best to resist, cause babies are expensive, but here are a few things I've got my eye on this season:

Spring 2016 Wishlist

// Nothing says warm weather like dressing in Lilly! I love so many things about this dress--the print, the silhouette, and the length of the sleeves, which makes it perfect for those transitional seasons.

// I've always been about elastic waistbands, even more so now with my post-maternity body. I bought these shorts in navy last year and basically wore them all the time. I'm looking to get another pair for this summer, maybe in a fun color like this light blue!

// Target does it again. I was very close to walking out with these shoes this past weekend, but I held off. I think they will have to come home to me eventually! The heel height is just right, and I love the blue stripes--makes me long for long, hot days of summer!

// Short sleeve sweaters are another great item to have when transitioning between seasons. If I got this adorable Draper James sweater, I would totally wear it with those J. Crew shorts above!

// If you couldn't already tell, I'm all about pastels right now, and I'm just in love with this Kate Spade watch!

// Speaking of Kate Spade, this tote bag with the popsicle print is making me feel all the heart eyed emojis. I could totally justify this purchase because it's just the right size for a diaper bag too.

// You also may have noticed my love for Reese Witherspoon's line, Draper James, and this pitcher and glass set is summer entertaining perfection.

// Lastly, what would a spring wishlist be without a pair of sunnies? I was browsing the Nordstrom app the other day and came across these adorable Kate Spade sunglasses. If the retro shape wasn't enough, the silver bow on the corner brings it home.

As usual, this is a small sampling of what I've been drooling over lately! What are you hoping will end up in your closet this season? Good thing I have an April birthday, so do take note, Matt and family!

This post contains affiliate links, and if you click on one and make a purchase, I make a commission. Thanks for supporting Thoroughly Modern! 

All Love, 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Aida's Birth Story: The Conclusion

Now, where were we? Right. It was around 11:30am on February 10th, and I needed some Fentanyl to dull the pain. Not long after it kicked in, I felt this weird wrenching in my abdomen and then what felt like my water breaking. Since I had the drugs to take the edge off, I was more excited than scared--things were finally happening! I could still feel the cramps, but they weren't terrible. For about 15 minutes, I basically lounged around in my bed, dictating notes to Matt so I could remember everything and chit chatting with my mom and MIL.

Note that I said "for about 15 minutes." After about 15 minutes, the cramps really started to come on strong, and they were more intense and more painful than they were before the Fentanyl. We called the nurse in, she took one look at me and said, "let's get you your epidural." Things get a little hazy at that point--the nurse came back to deliver the bad news that the anesthesiologist was with another patient, so we had to wait. At that point, I was in more pain than I had ever felt in my life. It just came on so strongly, and my body felt like it wanted to push, which freaked me out because I was certain the baby was about to come.

"I just want to push!" I yelled.
"Okay," the nurse said," let me check you."

And so this went on for about an hour. Matt kept asking them to hurry up with the epidural. He looked like he was almost in pain himself--I'll never forget the worry and anxiety that stayed on his face that entire time. While we waited for what seemed like an eternity, I was lying on my side, twisted up with my face smashed against the bed rails, clawing at the sheets and crying out in pain. I remember Matt's mom kept asking me if I wanted them to move me away from the bed rails, because that didn't look comfortable, but I kept shouting, "DON'T TOUCH ME!" Somehow, I survived. Matt was on one side, coaching me with my breathing, and my mom was on the other side rubbing my back. Finally, they called in another anesthesiologist, and they both arrived at the same time. Typical. They asked to clear the room, and only one person could stay. Since my mom and Matt both aren't good with needles, my mother-in-law remained. The nurse and anesthesiologist came over to me and pushed me up so that I was sitting up with my legs over the side of the bed--and in that moment my water really broke.

During the last few weeks of my pregnancy, I kept thinking, "what if my water breaks and I don't notice? Like maybe I'm taking a shower or using the bathroom?" Well, let me tell you, that is a sensation that can't be missed. My water broke all over that hospital floor, right in front of my mother-in-law. I suppose in other circumstances that might be embarrassing, but I was in too much pain to care--all I cared about in that moment was the anesthesiologist getting that epidural going!

Finally, those good meds kicked in. Ladies, if you're planning to have kids but you're nervous about getting the epidural, don't worry--it only felt like a few pinches, and I've had IVs that feel worse! Of course, my memory could  be distorted by the pain of the contractions.

Once I had the epidural and felt relaxed, the nurse told me to take a nap, and once I woke up, it would be time to have a baby! I took her advice and dozed for a few hours. By the time I woke up, I was at 8 cm--so I really was almost ready! Matt got my special music playlist going, and we started texting basically everyone we knew. We were so confident that baby would be arriving in just a few hours. We were so wrong.

I started pushing around 6pm. The nurse is the one who does most of the work--my doctor came in every now and then to check on me, and then would come in for the main event. Once again, we were so confident that baby would be arriving in about an hour.

I ended up pushing for over three hours, and it was both physically and mentally exhausting. I don't know how women do this without an epidural--there is no way I could focus on pushing while being in extreme pain. I'm pretty sure that around 8pm, the nurse and doctor kept telling me "you're almost there!" I swear, by the end, if I had heard that one more time I was going to lose it.

When she finally arrived, she was immediately whisked away because she had swallowed meconium before coming out into the world. What's meconium, you ask? Well, it's poop. I actually read about this happening and it can be pretty serious, so of course I freaked out. Luckily, everything was okay, and she was quickly cleaned up and placed into my arms. Matt and I just kept looking at each other with tears in our eyes, not needing to say anything. It was one of the absolute best moments of our lives, and even more fitting, the song "Everything Changes" by Sara Bareilles came on the playlist just a few moments after she was born. Give the song a listen and you'll understand.

Whew! That was a long story, but it was a long labor! All told, we were in the hospital for almost 27 hours before she was finally born. I'm grateful that there were no complications, and we ended up with a healthy baby girl.

Thanks for sticking around! I'll be sharing more about our day-to-day life with a newborn soon.

All Love,

Monday, March 14, 2016

One Month

It's hard to believe, but this little girl turned one month old last week!

I've said this probably a million times, but it truly has been one of the most challenging months of our life. Things are definitely going smoother than when we first brought her home, but there are still plenty of tough days that make me feel like I will never get this parenting thing figured out.

I'm learning that parenthood is nothing but questions that don't get answered. Am I letting her cry too long? Am I spoiling her by picking her up when she cries? She poops A LOT, is that normal? Should I really be letting her nurse for this long? Am I feeding her too much? Is it my fault that she's gassy? Did we get her clean enough during her bath? Is she getting enough activity?

Despite all of my doubts, I wouldn't trade this for anything. Sometimes, she'll curl right into your chest and fall asleep, and I could just let her sleep there for an hour and not do anything, because it's one of the best feelings in the world.

Matt and I have a notebook we use to write down letters to Aida, and we plan to give them to her when she turns eighteen. Here's a snippet of what I wrote for her one month birthday:

"We feel such delight and happiness to see you open those beautiful blue eyes and explore the world around you. We knew before you were born you would come into this world ready to make it your own." 

We would not trade this month for anything, and we're excited to spend all the months ahead with our sweet girl. 

All Love,

Monday, March 7, 2016


Another lazy weekend in the books with our sweet Aida Marie!

newborn boppy lounger

On Saturday, Matt went out and picked up breakfast (again). He went to a local diner, Joe's Cafe, and got me pancakes, bacon, and eggs. I'd share a picture except I basically cleaned my plate before I could even think about taking out my phone.

Later that day, I got to have another afternoon to myself. I went to Target, which of course meant grabbing a pick-me-up from Starbucks, and took my time going around the store.

Lilly Pulitzer Vest
And got to style non maternity clothes!
I picked up a pretty floral dress to wear to an upcoming baby shower and a new chambray shirt because, to put this delicately, since I've been nursing my chest has gotten a little too big for some of my button up shirts. Yikes.

I also felt all the heart eyed emojis over their new home decor collection for kids, Pillowfort. Aida may not be able to sit up on her own yet, but she totally needs a teepee in her nursery, don't you think?

On Sunday we lounged around in our sweats and pajamas. Little miss got a bath, which she is slowly starting to tolerate ("tolerate" is a very generous word here--let's just say that this go around she didn't cling to my arm and try to drag herself out of the bathtub). I did some meal planning for the week, and I really hope we're able to stick to that. I kind of gave myself a past for the first few weeks after Aida was born and literally ate all the cookies, brownies, and chocolates I could get my hands on. That, plus eating a lot of takeout, has made me feel less than stellar about myself, so I'm hoping to get back to a healthier routine soon.

I'm a little nervous about Monday--I have an appointment with my GI doctor and Aida is coming with me. Sometimes she can get a little fussy in the afternoons, so I'm hoping everything goes smoothly.

How was your weekend?

Joining Biana and Meghan for Weekending

This post contains affiliate links, and if you click on one and make a purchase I make a commission. Thank  you for supporting Thoroughly Modern!

All Love,

Friday, March 4, 2016


That euphoric, Friday feeling hasn't changed at all since having a baby. The start of the weekend means Matt will be home with us, which means a whole two days of 4/4ths gang's all here! I'm excited for when Aida will be a little older and we can take her around and show her off. We're holding off right now, since the weather is still a little crazy and it's cold/flu season.

Here are five thoughts for Friday: 

// I'm still trying to get the hang of things at home by myself. Going to the bathroom and making lunch are the tricky parts--she always seems to start fussing whenever I try to do one of those things, and homegirl just LOVES to be held and cuddled when she's fussy. We have one of those Baby Bjorn carriers, and I'm hoping to figure that out soon, which should help me a little bit. 

strawberry baby

// I had another afternoon to myself this week! Thanks to Aida's Mimi and Grandad (Matt's parents), I went out and had a nice little date with Home Goods. I picked up a few more laundry hampers, and I cannot even begin to tell you how happy that made me! It really is the little things. 

// We are all kinds of excited about the ending of the Bachelor--he told two women he loved them! Who will he choose?!?! This has got to be the most exciting ending in a while. 

// On the opposite end of the spectrum, I am all kinds of disappointed in the Super Tuesday results. What the heck, America?!? 

// I posted about this a few weeks ago on Instagram, but I absolutely love this cookbook from Mix and Match Mama. The recipes are super simple and delicious. I highly recommend ordering it (it's only $10!), or at least following her blog where she also posts great recipes. 

mix and match meal planner

Lastly (I guess this makes six things), I want to thank you, dear readers, for sticking around! I honestly can't say when I will get back to a regular posting schedule, so I appreciate everyone hanging out and being supportive when I do manage to put something together! As always, you can follow on Instagram or Snapchat (modernkate) to stay connected! 

I'm really looking forward to another weekend with our family of four :) 

This post contains affiliate links, and if you click on one and make a purchase, I make a commission. Thanks for supporting Thoroughly Modern!

All Love,

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Aida's Birth Story

By February 9th, Aida was four days late and was making no signs of appearing any time soon. The exam at my doctor's appointment that morning was nothing more than formality--my doctor knew without looking that I would need to check into the hospital that night, and not in the morning, because I would need extra help to move things along.

After that appointment, we had a quiet day together. We went to lunch with my mom and stuffed our faces with gourmet burgers, garlic pecorino fries, and a homemade ice cream sandwich. That afternoon, we napped and had lots of cuddles with Millie. Finally, it was time.

roasted garlic pecorino fries

I remember we were both quiet and reflective on the drive to the hospital. A Mumford and Sons song came on my playlist, and I can't remember what it was, but I do remember that it seemed to fit the mood perfectly. We held hands and said nothing, and tried to take it all in.

Once we got there, our mood changed and we were like little kids at Christmas. We were in awe of the giant room we had to ourselves, and were starting to get excited because we would be meeting our little girl so soon!

The nurse got me started with the Cervidil and told me I couldn't eat anything for two hours. That put a damper on the mood, because I hadn't eaten since lunch and I could feel a dark cloud of hangry creeping in. It also meant our choices would be limited, because most places that delivered would be shutting down by 10pm (and my cutoff time was 10:30pm), and I really didn't want Matt to drive somewhere and leave me. He managed to get in a delivery order just in time, and I inhaled some chicken fingers and french fries as soon as I got the go ahead!

Then things got a little tricky. Apparently my blood pressure kept going up and it concerned the nurse enough to call the doctor. I googled "preeclampsia," which was a really bad idea, and immediately started crying. Thankfully, everything was okay and there was no need to panic. Around 11:30pm, we both drifted off to sleep, and actually managed to sleep through most of the night.

The next morning, the nurse told me I should probably eat a granola bar, because it could be a while before I was allowed anything else. I was thankful I had packed a bag of snacks, but that breakfast bar definitely wasn't enough fuel to get me through a hard day's labor! I was also allowed to take a shower at that point, which really helped me relax and feel ready for what was to come.

Around 7:30am, they started me on the Pitocin, which is the drug that is supposed to get things going! Nothing happened for several hours. Matt and I watched some TV, I straightened my hair--we had quite the leisurely morning. Sometime around 10am, my doctor came into check and I was only a little past 3cm--still had a ways to go! However, I was definitely starting to feel contractions, which basically felt like really bad cramps at that point. My mom and MIL had also arrived at that point to keep me company.

By 11:30am, the cramps had intensified--I was afraid to ask for the epidural too early, so the nurse brought me some Fentanyl, and that stuff worked like a charm! Well, it worked like a charm for a little bit, but we'll get to that part.

I immediately felt relaxed and at ease after the Fentanyl--so much so, that my water started to break. I say "started" because apparently that was just a preview of what was to happen. I know, I know, more foreshadowing, but don't worry, I'll get there!

Now that I've got you on the edge of your seats, I'll stop there. This has already been a long post, and we still have about nine more hours of labor to cover.

Stay tuned for the exciting conclusion! (Spoiler alert: We had a baby!)

All Love,
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