The End of Breastfeeding!

Finally getting around to posting something again! Sorry for all the blog radio silence. It’s because kids are overwhelming, and I’ve spent my time doing other things (like dishes and laundry and grocery shopping…lame stuff like that). But I’ve missed it and hope to get back to doing it regularly again, someday:)

Anyway, I wanted share my story of breastfeeding now that that particular chapter has closed. This is not a “breast is best” post. Seriously. I don’t care what you feed your child. All 3 of my kids have had formula at some point in their 1st year of life. And I feel no shame about that, and you shouldn’t either. I just want to share my story, cause it’s my own…and it’s what happened. It’s not implying anything negative about someone else’s story. (Because people love to get offended on the internet these days I feel like I have to say that).

Before I had my first kid, the majority of what I heard about breastfeeding is that “it’s so easy and natural and totally what’s best for your child.” That was it. No mention of clogged ducts or mastitis or any other difficulties that could come along with it. But I’m glad I dug a little deeper into my research and got a more realistic idea of what it’s like so I wasn’t too surprised going into it. Because…it was NOT easy. And I think being mentally prepared for that is half the battle. So, more than anything, my goal is to share a real-life nursing experience with you (to get more realistic stories out there), and to reflect for my own personal memories 🙂

It’s lengthy…sorry.

We’ll start with kid #1, Gwen. Right off the bat, before we even left the hospital, I was sore. Ya’ll…it hurt. And I had a night nurse who was a bit too aggressive with the breastfeeding thing in the middle of the night, basically shoving Gwen’s face into my boob. I cried. It hurt and I just wanted to sleep. My milk hadn’t even come in yet for goodness sake. So that already put a damper on the experience for me.

Then we went home. Still sore (everyyyyyywhere). But especially the boobs, because, ya know, they weren’t used to having a little piranha-like hungry baby attached to them. It was so bad one day, I stood there crying in the bathroom not wanting to wear a bra or shirt because anything touching them was too painful. I wanted to quit already. That’s where my support person came in- my husband. I think having a support person to encourage you during those first few weeks is CRUCIAL. He reminded me that the pain would go away, that I was strong and could do this and that I was already doing an amazing job. Then he went to Target and bought me a super soft, comfortable nightgown and “soothies” for my boobs lol. And he was right. After awhile (seemed like forever at the time), it did get better. The pain and soreness eventually went away and things got easier.

Then I got a clogged duct. I didn’t know that was a thing. But it was also painful and annoying. Gwen favored one side over the other, so the neglected boob was the problem side at first. I would try to pump on that side to make sure it was getting fully drained, and I felt like a cow being milked by a machine (I hate the pump). Eventually the clogged duct cleared and all was well again.

Fast forward (just a bit) to when Gwen was about 6 months old. Things started to go downhill. It seemed like my supply was dropping and she was pretty frustrated and fussy at the boob. She also wasn’t gaining weight as fast as she had been. Turns out…SURPRISE….I was pregnant (WHAT?!)….yes. I had a 6 month old, and was pregnant again. Ok then.

My OB basically told me to wean Gwen right away. Because I had a previous miscarriage, she said it was just better that I stop. I had read that some people breastfeed while pregnant with no issues, but since it wasn’t going well anyway at the time and because I was terrified of miscarrying again, we stopped and switched to formula after just a few more breastfeeding sessions. Fortunately, she took to formula in a bottle right away, and that’s what we did for the remainder of her 1st year. I was definitely sad at first and I struggled with the fact that my plan of breastfeeding her for an entire year was cut short. But seeing her eat well and start growing at a good pace again made me feel much better.

Kid #2, Ivor Baby. The first weeks were a little easier this time around. Still some soreness, but not nearly as bad. I was also at a new hospital this time with nurses who just let me do my thing and didn’t aggressively shove a baby on me (thank you Good Samaritan Hospital!) I experienced a few clogged ducts again in the first few months, 1 of them turned into mastitis (breast infection that causes fever, general crappy feeling, super painful boob, etc.). No fun. I took antibiotics and worked hard to clear it. It eventually cleared and all went smoothly again.

Until around the 10-month mark. My supply tanked, and he started losing weight (!) because he’s stubborn and resistant to change and would. not. accept. ANYTHING other than the boob. I tried everything. Formula in a bottle. Formula in a sippy cup (tried every single sippy cup on God’s green earth). I tried what little I had left of breastmilk in a cup.  He wasn’t having any of it. Our pediatrician referred us to a GI doctor (who scared the crap out of me with talk of a feeding tube to get his weight back up, and just generally had horrible bedside manner) . She recommended PediSure. PediaSure is basically a milkshake. It’s insanely sweet and I did not like giving it to him, but we were desperate…and it worked after the first few tries. He drank it out of a sippy cup and started gaining weight again. I slowly weaned him off that and onto cow’s milk by his 1st birthday, which he had JUST started accepting when we found out he was allergic to it. But that’s another story lol. He started drinking almond milk after that and now he’s a happy, healthy, growing boy! (Still stubborn and resistant to change though…lol)

Finally, kid #3…miss Fiona. My most successful breastfeeding experience of all 3. That’s not to say it was totally without struggle. At this point I knew I was prone to clogged ducts and although I tried hard to prevent them, I failed. I didn’t get a lot of them,  but 1 in particular developed QUICKLY into mastitis and I went to urgent care because we couldn’t get my fever down. I just needed to drink more water because I was dehydrated, which was making everything worse. Eventually of course, I got better and all was well again. After that, I felt so comfortable and natural breastfeeding her …to the point where it really was totally “easy and natural” (but it took me 3 kids to get there lol). I also abandoned that dang nursing cover by kid #3 too. #freedom

Around the 10-month mark (again) I feared that my supply might be dropping. She wasn’t losing any weight, but also wasn’t gaining much. Because I was terrified of the same thing happening to her that happened to Ivor Baby, I started to supplement with formula. She refused at first, but eventually took it. I never stopped breastfeeding and continued to try that first, and offer formula second. Closer to her 1st birthday I tried cow’s milk in a sippy cup, which took her awhile to accept so I kept breastfeeding, but gradually weaned down to twice a day. Then once a day.

And we officially ended our breastfeeding “chapter” just a few weeks ago, around 14.5 months. I’m pretty sure my supply was gone and it was more of a comfort thing for her in the last month (and let’s be honest…for me too). Because she’s my last baby, it took me a little longer to “let go” of that stage. Because now, it’s just done. It’s over. And it makes me a little sad 🙁

My husband asked me (after her 1st birthday) when I planned to stop. And I didn’t have a great answer. I knew I would just “know.” So I said “I don’t know….when it’s time.” The original plan was just for the 1st year, but again…this is my last baby. I wanted to hang on just a little longer and continuing past her 1st birthday just felt right.

So what made it the right time for us? A little bit of her getting frustrated and lacking interest and a little bit of inexplicable mom-instinct. We were both just ready. I don’t know. It’s hard to explain.

And that’s my story.

Here are the things I will NOT miss about breastfeeding:

Sore nipples
Clogged ducts
Mastitis
Being the only one in the middle of the night to feed my child when I just wanted to sleep
Supply issues
Pumping

Here’s what I WILL miss about breastfeeding:

Being able to sustain my child’s life for the first 6 months of their life using ONLY my body (seriously mind-blowing how cool that is)

But most of all….this….

 

That little hand.

Such a sweet, precious time with my babies.  The good times really did outweigh the bad. And it’s over before you know it! For 4.5 years, breastfeeding was a big part of my mom-life. And now it’s just over. I have a 4.5 year old, 3.5 year old, and  15 month old, who no longer needs mommy in that way.

Ok. I’m gonna go cry now.

The End.

 

Fiona Joy is One <3

My sweet 3rd baby… 2nd daughter…rainbow after a big, big storm…miss Fiona Joy, is ONE YEAR OLD. Just like that. Her presence in our family has brought joy and hope…and a little chaos. She went from the best of the newborn sleepers (out of my 3) to the worst of them all. Bringing me to the brink of sleep-deprived madness as I sat with her at 3am, in tears, on Amazon prime, stress-eating chocolate….on more than 1 occasion. But praise be to Jesus, we’ve been sleeping through the night for a few months now ( ::insert raised hands emoji:: )

I have many feelings about the fact that my last baby is about to be promoted to toddler-status and that I’ll no longer have a BABY, but I’ll just save that for another sappier post and stick to the basics for now 😀

Fiona- you are fierce. Just like your big sister. A slightly more “determined to prove herself” type of fierce (#3rdkidprobs). You don’t care that you’re the smallest/youngest in the family, you’re going to do what you want, especially when you’re told “no” or that you “can’t” do something. Your determination to keep up with your siblings has meant reaching most baby milestones earlier than they did, which has certainly kept me on my toes! I love your determination (most of the time) and I hope you always have that. You’ve always been able to “hold your own” with Gwen and Ivor and even playfully “fight back” which is amazing/adorable. The sibling bond the 3 of you already have just melts my heart. You were definitely the missing piece that completed our little family.

So, here are your 1-year “stats”:

*You are sooooo close to walking. You took your first steps in Tahoe (the magical place that it is). And you’ve been taking more steps every day. One of these days, very soon, you’re just going to take off and not look back!

*You have 4 teeth

*You wear 12-mos clothing

*You babble a lot. “No” is your new favorite word. But you say phrases too, out of nowhere, that are pretty dang clear..like, “want milk’ , “want down” are the big ones. YOU’RE 1, HOW ARE YOU TALKING ALREADY?! I blame your sister.

*Your favorite food is bananas. You throw tantrums until you see the banana.

*Speaking of tantrums…you’ve already reached “toddler-status” in this category with throwing yourself face-down on the floor in a dramatic manner. Fun times.

*You’re starting to accept the sippy cup as more than a chew toy and even drank actual milk out of it recently, signaling the very near end of our nursing journey (also another post for another sappy day….)

*But speaking of, we made it a whole year nursing! Officially the longest, most-successful breastfeeding experience I’ve had (not that it was always smooth-sailing in the beginning….remember the mastitis?…the urgent care?…ugh). But, we made it. Cheers, baby girl!

*You love going for walks and hikes, being outside and just feeling the wind on your face. A girl after my own heart.

*Your favorite show is “Little Baby Bum” on Netflix. Anything with music, really.

*You’re rarely content to just “chill”. You need to be active and in on all the action that’s happening around you. “Places to go, people to see, Mom!”

*You love to clap your hands and dance to music (you’ll immediately stop what you’re doing when the music comes on to do so)

*Most of all, you love love love your family. And we love YOU.

Happy 1st birthday baby girl!

 

 

Ok, need to stop with the photos (for now) 🙂

 

 

 

I Ain’t As Good As I Once Was

Just wanted to share some thoughts/revelations I’ve had recently about being active (again).  Ya know…running, hiking, biking, etc.

We recently visited Tahoe for the 2nd time (we seriously love it there and would move there if we could I think). We filled our time with lots of outdoor, active activities, as one should when you visit there. Specifically, mountain biking, which is a favorite activity of my husband’s (he has a lot more experience than I do). But I enjoy it too, especially with him.

This time around though, I was having a really hard time with it. I kept thinking “why is this so much harder than last time??” For some reason, in my mind, I thought I’d be in better shape now and that riding the same mountain, 2 years later, would be easy peasy. HA. Also, this year…I was PMSing hardcore and my emotions were all over the place. My head was filled with a lot of discouraging thoughts “this sucks…I suck….I can’t do this..what is wrong with me? why won’t my legs GO?!”

And then it occurred to me…2 years ago, I had only given birth to 2 kids, not 3 (let me tell you, that 3rd one changes things). I was 2 years younger (also, BIG difference). And I had been working out REGULARLY for months leading up that first Tahoe trip. I was in MUCH better shape then. So, duh Krystal. Of course you’re slower now.

Between the 2 trips, we experienced some stressful/traumatic events, had another kid and pretty much stopped working-out until JUST recently (referring to myself here, not my husband). So I need to be nicer to myself. My running pace isn’t going to be what it was back in high school, at least not yet. It’s going to take some time to get back there. And my biking skills/climbing ability isn’t going to just magically appear. But thanks to my stubbornness and determination (I have no idea where my kids get that….), I will get better!

One of my favorite tools to track progress is Strava. It tracks your activities (pace, elevation gain, times, etc.) so you can try to beat previous efforts. Super motivating! You better believe I’ll be revisiting certain routes once I’m faster/stronger 🙂

And aside from the self-competitiveness, it just feels good being active, being outdoors, especially when I can do these things with my husband too (our idea of a fun date!) Even at a slow pace, it’s still faster than sitting on the couch 🙂

So, let this be an encouragement to you. If you used to be faster/stronger and you’ve been feeling discouraged…don’t! *Most likely, your body has been through a lot. Don’t have unrealistic expectations of yourself. Set achievable goals. Start slow. And keep going 🙂

 

*I’m not an expert. Just guessing 😛

 

Cowboy, Take Me Away!

And now for something completely different!

 

This blog is usually reserved for kid updates or Stitch Fix and  Trunk Club posts (whenever I actually get the time to post). But I’m adding a new category now: Outdoor Adventures!

Ivor and I have always loved the outdoors- having both grown up in rural PA. But setting aside time to actually wander and be “outdoorsy” took a back seat when we started having kids. We had 3 kids in 4 years, so that’s understandable, right? But, it’s time! Honestly, it’s never too early, in my opinion, to introduce the kids to it. So why NOT start now…. at ages 4, 3 and almost 1?!

I have a bunch of reasons for why I want family hikes and outdoor adventures to happen, why I think it will be good for all of us, etc. I’ll try to sum it up in 2 points:

*For me. I just love it. It’s refreshing and re-energizing. Being in nature is one of the places I feel like I can connect more to God. It’s a “reset” button for the absolute craziness of raising 3 kids. And it helps me find more contentment with where we live. The hustle and bustle of Silicon Valley gets to me sometimes. And the cost of housing…ugh…don’t get me started. But we are SURROUNDED by beauty on all sides- the mountains, the ocean, the rolling hills, lakes,  waterfalls, etc. etc. It’s amazing to me that we can find peace and solitude and “country life” just a quick drive away from the city.

*For my kids. I want them to spend more time outside. And yes, the backyard is really nice and well taken advantage of. But there’s so much more to explore and discover (and we’re SO close to it, it would really be a shame to not take advantage of that too). I hope they will grow to love the outdoors as much as my husband and I do, but if anything- it’s going to keep them active throughout their childhood (climbing mountains is excellent cardio btw!) and there are plenty of teachable moments for them on hikes 🙂

The goal: to go on a family hike or bike ride at least once a week. There are so many local county and state parks within a short driving distance of us (and sooooooo many trails) so it shouldn’t be too hard to make it happen. And then as often as our budget and schedule allows- travel a little farther away to discover even more amazing places. Next up on that list is LAKE TAHOE over 4th of July week! Woohoo!

The reality: it might not happen every week. Not every hike will go smoothly or as planned. Some might be total disasters (because…kids), but I expect/hope that *MOST* of them will be amazing. If anything, I’ll get some good pictures and a good workout out of it!

I’ll share on here as often as I can, but the majority of it will happen on instagram if you’d like to follow along (@gogriffiths). There is such a great community of outdoor enthusiasts and other hiking families that I’ve found on there. It’s been inspiring to see.

I hope it will inspire you too, to go adventure with your own family, if that sort of thing interests you. And don’t underestimate your kid’s abilities. They can probably handle more than you think they can! Gwen is out there killing these climbs!

Here are some photos from our latest hike at Quicksilver Almaden. We did the Hacienda Trail to Virl O Norton Trail Loop. 3 Miles, over 800 ft. elevation gain.


Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Photo by Krystal Griffiths

Stitch Fix Review #32

Hello Lovelies,

I’m back with Stitch Fix Review #32! I’ve been meaning to get this post together for awhile now but life with 3 kids is crazy, unpredictable and so very exhausting. When I’m most motivated to be in “work mode” and be productive in the office is during the day. But constant interruptions from the kids and activities and snacks and diapers and meltdowns, etc. etc…. makes mommy productivity really difficult. So then I tell myself, “I’ll work on it after bedtime.” But then after bedtime, I’m so stinking exhausted from the day that all I want to do is collapse on the couch. Not keep working.

So there’s my totally unnecessary, long-winded explanation for why I haven’t blogged as much as I’d like to haha.

Now, back to Stitch Fix. (And seriously, I’m so tired right now I’m going to keep it short and sweet…and I apologize in advance for any typos). It’s just one of those seasons of motherhood right now…

NOTE: This post contains affiliate links. If a purchase is made using one of the links, I will receive a small commission which helps support this blog!

 

Stitch Fix Review #32

 

Item 1: Ashley Off-The-Shoulder Blouse (Q&A) $54

Ashley Off-The-Shoulder Blouse (Q&A) Stitch Fix

Ashley Off-The-Shoulder Blouse (Q&A) Stitch Fix

I almost kept this one because I love the color and the cute sleeves (and it’s not sheer! horray!) HOWEVER, it honestly wasn’t that comfortable for me. It’s all blousey material with just a little stretch in the sleeves., so I felt kind of restricted in it (a bit too tight across the chest). In my note to the stylist for next time I asked for more casual fabrics and if they send another off-the-shoulder top, for it to have more stretch. And I do already have 2 other royal blue blouses.

Oh, and I apologize for the wrinkles on the shirt. It came that way and since I wasn’t keeping it, I didn’t want to risk ironing or steaming 😀 (and also…who has time for that??). Return.

 

Items #2 and #3: Kay Skinny Jean (LIVERPOOL) $88 and Gypsy Studded Gladiator Sandal (REPORT FOOTWEAR) $49

Ashley Off-The-Shoulder Blouse (Q&A) Stitch Fix

Kay Skinny Jean (LIVERPOOL), Gypsy Studded Gladiator Sandal (REPORT FOOTWEAR) Stitch Fix

I asked for light wash denim and casual go-to sandals for the summer. My stylist delivered on both counts here! The jeans are very figure-flattering with a good amount of stretch. Keep. The sandals are casual and comfortable with edgy studs that I didn’t think I was going to like, but once I paired them with different outfits I really started to like the flair that it added to each look. Also keep!

 

Item #4: Larretta Lace Detail Blouse (JELLA C) $38

Larretta Lace Detail Blouse (JELLA C) Stitch Fix

Larretta Lace Detail Blouse (JELLA C) Stitch Fix

Larretta Lace Detail Blouse (JELLA C) Stitch Fix

I was soooo disappointed that this top didn’t work out for me. I love everything about it but the straps just felt too long (making the whole thing hang low on me, which made me uncomfortable). But the color, the fabric, that lace detail on the back…ahhhh I love it! So sad to return this one.

 

Item 5: Arabella Cold Shoulder Tie Detail Dress (FREE HEART) $48

Arabella Cold Shoulder Tie Detail Dress (FREE HEART) Stitch Fix

Arabella Cold Shoulder Tie Detail Dress (FREE HEART) Stitch Fix

Arabella Cold Shoulder Tie Detail Dress (FREE HEART) Stitch Fix

Arabella Cold Shoulder Tie Detail Dress (FREE HEART) Stitch Fix

I didn’t hate this dress as much as I thought I might lol. I generally do not like shapeless dresses like this on me because I already lack curves and I feel like I just drown in the fabric. Like I’m wearing a potato sack. However, this one really wasn’t all that bad. I like the idea of this dress. It’s hard to tell from the pictures but it’s a very light-wash denim, that was incredibly soft and comfortable! If it weren’t for the cold-shoulder and tie detail, I’d throw a belt around the waist and probably keep it. Alas, I’m not a fan of the cold-shoulder or tie detail on this dress. So I returned it. I’d definitely be willing to give more dresses like this a try though in the future. OH and it had pockets. I do love me some pockets.

 

RECAP: I kept the jeans and the sandals. Returned everything else.

And that’s that folks. Bedtime for me now lol.

Until next time…

 

Ivor Baby Turns 3

My Dear Ivor Baby-

You are about to turn 3 and I have some feelings about this (mostly denial). Because you came into this world so soon after your big sister, and you’re already a big brother, the past 3 years of your life have been kind of a blur of craziness (and wonderfulness, all wrapped up into 1). So I want to take this time to talk all about you, my sweet middle child and only son, to reflect on all the things I love about you. But first- a quick reminder of how your story begins.

You were our planned, but unexpected in timing, 2nd child. Your big sister was just 6 months old, sleeping in her bouncy seat, when I first found out about you. I told your daddy about you through tears of happiness but also quite a bit of “HOW IN THE WORLD AM I GOING TO HANDLE THIS, WHAT HAVE WE DONE??” kind of emotions.

And in a similar manner, you entered the world. FAST.  You were ready to arrive before I had a chance to get an epidural or ANY pain meds whatsoever. So I felt every bit of you entering this world. Don’t you ever forget that 😛 Mama doesn’t usually have a potty mouth, but in the moments leading up to your birth, there were some words lol.

But from the moment you were out, you stole mama’s heart. You were so sweet and so snuggly. And you still are. I mean…look at you!!!

Which brings me to my list 🙂

*I love that you still cuddle with us and give the BEST HUGS EVER. It can melt the hardest of hearts on the worst of days.

*I love your dimple and those big brown eyes. You make it really hard to discipline you sometimes 😛

*I love that you got mama’s skin tone (and eyes). I also have 2 siblings with fair skin and light eyes, so I always stood out next to them. Likewise, your sisters are fair skinned with blue eyes. Seems silly…but I like that we have that in common.

*I LOVE how friendly, outgoing and social you are. Whether it’s a playground, Gwen’s classroom, church, or neighbors walking by, you say “hi” to everyone and make friends wherever you go. “Hi guys!!!!” -you, walking into any space where people are.

*I love that you also have an “I do what I want” attitude (except of course when it’s ME telling you what to do lol). But that one time on the playground when those older boys tried to tell you that you weren’t “allowed” on “their” play structure, you stayed and played anyway. And eventually even they could not resist being your friend and playing with  you. I hope you always stand your ground and don’t allow yourself to be pushed around.

*I love watching you embrace your big brother role with Fiona. You give her hugs and kisses, watch out for her and play with her. It took some time, but you’re there now 🙂 Sometimes I get sad that you don’t have a brother to “rough-house” with (though Gwen is certainly always happy to do so lol), but you have plenty of wonderful men in your life and having sisters will give you lots of practice with how to treat women. My prayer for you is that you’ll be gentle, kind, and respectful to all women. That you’ll treat a girl the way you’d want someone to treat your sisters, and if someone ever MIStreats them, that you’ll stand up for them (not because they can’t stand up for themselves, but because it’s just the right thing to do). Anyway…I digress.

*I love how you mispronounce certain words. “Doy” (door) “Stoy” (store)”Ryyyye” (roar), dinnay (dinner), backyeeaahd (backyard), etc etc.

*I love how much you love water (any body of water- ocean, lakes, rivers, etc., the bath tub, pools, sprinklers, etc.) Which makes swim lessons a big priority this summer!

Oh, there’s more I could say but I’m running out of time to write this! Just know that you you bring us so much joy and laughter (and gray hairs :-P). We love you so much Ivor Baby. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

 

 

 

Motherhood & Why I’m Done Having Kids

I always find it odd/annoying how people give their opinions on 1. Whether or not you should have kids 2. When you should have them 3. How many you should have, and 4. How many years is appropriate between each of them.

To be blunt, ain’t nobody’s business but your own and your husband’s. BUT…I do enjoy hearing other people’s stories and their own reasons for those things, particularly when they decide to be done. So I’m going to share my own haha 😛

From 2012 to 2016, I was pregnant 5 times. I had a miscarriage (2012). I had Gwen (2013). Surprise! I had Ivor Baby (2014). I had another miscarriage (twins- 2015). Then I had Fiona (2016).

Friends, I am done.

The last 5 years have been insane. Amazing. Beautiful. Lonely. Devastating. Joyful.

Pregnant. Nursing. Pushing out babies and feeling every bit of it because my body rejects epidurals apparently (yeah…).

Sleepless nights. Tears. Laughter. Isolation. Connection.

Discovering how wretched I can be when little people push my buttons. Discovering the depths of a love I never knew possible (3 times over).

I remember a fleeting thought once (most likely during a very rough night with Ivor Baby), where I thought maybe we could be done. I had the “perfect” family. 1 girl and 1 boy. Though lots of people probably wouldn’t think having them 14 months apart is “perfect”. But after a little while I realized that “nope…someone’s missing.” So we eventually started trying again. And then miscarriage #2 happened. At that point I REALLY thought “maybe we should be done”…but only because I was terrified of going through the pain of another loss …AGAIN. But no….our family still felt incomplete. In fact, that loss confirmed even more how badly I wanted just 1 more.

A friend said something recently about having a 3rd baby (but really it could apply to lots of things)…

“If you don’t do it, you’ll always wonder. If you do, you’ll never regret it.”

That’s exactly how I felt before Fiona. Was I risking the pain of another miscarriage? Yes. But was she worth it? Um, absolutely! Without her, I’d always wonder what it would be like to have 3 kids. And now that I have her, I would never ever regret it. Even though 3 kids, ages 4 and under, is a circus most days 😛

But now I have contentment in my heart. It feels complete. I don’t have that same wonder about 4 kids as I did about 3 kids. And quite honestly, I’m just done with the highs/lows of pregnancy and those early baby days. The crazy hormones. The weepies. And I really don’t want to go through the anxiety of pregnancy again, wondering “will it stick?…will I lose this one too?” I’m just done with the season of having babies, and now I’m ready for the season of raising them.

Don’t get me wrong, God COULD have other plans and miraculously gives us another child, even though it’s not our plan. And I might freak out. And have a nervous breakdown. But I’d certainly love that child as much as the first 3 and never ever regret him/her either. But as far as MY plan goes…we are done lol.

I guess it might seem like an odd subject for a Mother’s Day post (“Why I’m done having kids”) lol…I don’t mean it to be negative in any way. Just a reflection on my journey into motherhood (becoming a mother), and embracing the NEXT season of motherhood 🙂

So to all the mamas out there with their own unique and beautiful stories, from my circus to yours- HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!!

Motherhood & Why I'm Done Having Kids

 

 

Stitch Fix Review #31- Spring Fix Take 2!

Welcome to another fun Spring fix from Stitch Fix! I LOVED my last fix and how springy everything was, so I asked my stylist to keep on going with the spring theme (why stop?!) One of my favorite things about this box in particular are the price points! Definitely one of the cheapest fixes I’ve received yet. My wallet approves. Additionally, it’s filled with super cute spring items that were hard to resist. Though I did have to resist some of it. Read on to find out why…

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If a purchase is made using one of the links, I receive a small commission which helps support this blog and keeps these posts a-coming!

Stitch Fix Review #31- Spring Fix Take 2!

 

Item 1: Kami Basic Cork Wedge (NINE WEST) $79

 

Kami Basic Cork Wedge Nine West Stitch Fix

Kami Basic Cork Wedge Nine West Stitch Fix

Kami Basic Cork Wedge Nine West Stitch Fix

Kami Basic Cork Wedge Nine West Stitch Fix

Ohhh these shoes. I’ll be honest, at first…I wasn’t thrilled. Only because I’ve been looking for a good neutral wedge sandal. Ya know..like, brown. Boring, I know. But I wanted something I can wear with everything this spring/summer. And these babies are bright blue. Definitely not neutral. But they are stinking ADORABLE. And I loved the pop of color it added to the outfits I tried them on with. So I took it as a challenge to try spicing up my outfits with pops of color in the shoe, instead of elsewhere. Just in this fix alone, they paired well with 2 different outfits (see below). Since I am a big fan of neutrals, I really do have plenty of neutral tops and bottoms in my wardrobe that will work well with them. So….I kept them! 😀

 

Item 2: Camille Ruffle Sleeve Blouse (NAPEAN SEA RD) $48

 

Camille Ruffle Sleeve Blouse Stitch Fix

Camille Ruffle Sleeve Blouse Stitch Fix

Camille Ruffle Sleeve Blouse Stitch Fix

Camille Ruffle Sleeve Blouse Stitch Fix

This top is super cute and fun & flirty. I love the off-the-shoulder thing and the ruffles (though for some reason it made me feel like a flamenco dancer…). This top screamed “let’s go on vacation to a tropical island and drink cocktails and dance the night away!!”… at least that’s what I heard. Or Miami. This would be a good Miami outfit. HOWEVER…it is way too see-through. I know it’s not as obvious in the pictures, but in person, trust me. You could see my belly-button and the top of my pants a little too well. I just don’t like that look. It’s not lingerie ya know what I mean?? And because of the spaghetti straps and off-the-shoulder-ness, wearing a cami underneath doesn’t really work.  Sigh…. Sorry, rant over. Conclusion: I returned this one.

 

Item 3: Everett Crew Neck Top (PAPERMOON) $34

 

Everett Crew Neck Top Papermoon Stitch Fix

Everett Crew Neck Top Papermoon Stitch Fix

Everett Crew Neck Top Papermoon Stitch Fix

This has a very “j.Crew” look to it. It’s simple but well structured and I was super impressed with the quality, especially for that price! As I mentioned before, I do love a good neutral. I love that I can pair this top with basically any color jean and add pops of color (in the shoe and/or jewelry).  Bonus, it is NOT see-through 😉 KEEP!

 

Item 4: Emmett Crew Neck Blouse (ALICE BLUE) $32

 

Emmett Crew Neck Blouse Alice Blue Stitch Fix

Emmett Crew Neck Blouse Alice Blue Stitch Fix

Emmett Crew Neck Blouse Alice Blue Stitch Fix

Emmett Crew Neck Blouse Alice Blue Stitch Fix

After receiving these cute pink pants in my last fix, I asked for some tops to wear with them and mentioned Navy specifically. So I was happy to receive this one with the tiny little arrow print! I actually ended up exchanging this one because of a slight defect. I disguised it well in these pics but the hemline was really uneven (and not on purpose). I also sized up so it would be a bit longer. Stitch Fix Customer Service is AMAZING and took care of it right away. They stand by their service and quality standards so if something isn’t up to snuff, they’re always willing to make it right. After 31 fixes (155 items), I’ve only had an issue with 2 items. Not bad at all!

 

Item 5: Brittny Tulip Sleeve Knit Top (KAILEIGH) $34

 

Brittny Tulip Sleeve Knit Top Stitch Fix

Brittny Tulip Sleeve Knit Top Stitch Fix

Brittny Tulip Sleeve Knit Top Stitch Fix

Brittny Tulip Sleeve Knit Top Stitch Fix

I was a little underwhelmed with this one if I’m being honest. It was just sort of “okay”. Pretty color, love the tulip sleeve detail but I wish the fabric and shape was a bit nicer. I got the feeling that after 1 wash/dry cycle, any shape it did have would be lost. I do admit that I could’ve styled it better here. Since it was such a casual fabric I wanted to go for a more casual look with the distressed denim and chucks. But I think it would’ve looked a lot better with grey jeans or a nice dark blue wash, and some flats.  If I had more time to spend on these photos and posts I’d style everything a few different ways. But ya know…kids. So final verdict on this one: Returned.

RECAP:

  1. Blue sandals: KEEP
  2. Yellow ruffle top: RETURN
  3. Grey striped top: KEEP
  4. Navy arrow print top: KEEP
  5. Pink knit top: RETURN

Ready to order your own spring (or summer) fix?! Or give a really awesome gift to someone else? Sign yourself up or send a gift card to a special someone who would love it (Mother’s Day is very close..) 😉

Stitch Fix Review #30- A Spring Fix!

It’s a Stitch Fix milestone, everyone! The big 3-0.  I was worried this review would never happen. My family was hit with the plague recently (aka the worst cold in the history of colds). Naturally, I got the worst of it and it lasted almost 3 weeks. This past week was by far the worst I’ve felt, and I procrastinated taking pictures of my fix until I could shower and put on a happy face (thankfully Stitch Fix gave me an extension on the return period because their customer service rocks). Anyway. I tried really hard not to look like a hot mess in these photos. I really did. I had just finished a major coughing spell right before we started and it looked like I had been crying for hours. But, the show must go on!

In my last fix I asked for “going out” pieces and I LOVED all the bright, bold colors I received. For this one I decided to switch gears a bit and asked for a “spring refresh” with casual items for spring (and summer). I mentioned colored denim, subtle florals and a neutral wedge sandal in the note to my stylist. I’m pretty pumped about this one. Upon first glance (when I peeked at the items before it arrived)  I thought it could be a 5/5. Dangerous.

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links. If you sign up and order a fix using my link, I will receive a small commission which helps support this blog. That said, all opinions are 100% my own! I love to share this stuff. 

 

Stitch Fix Review #30- A Spring Fix!

Item #1: Attica V-Neck Tank Top (ALICE BLUE) $34 and Item #2: Chester Cargo Short (PISTOLA) $68

 

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Attica V-Neck Tank Top, Chester Cargo Short

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Attica V-Neck Tank Top, Chester Cargo Short

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Attica V-Neck Tank Top, Chester Cargo Short

Let’s start with the top. I ADORE the print. It is exactly the kind of floral top I like and what I asked for. Subtle. I don’t prefer to wear all-over, big, bold floral prints. This one is just perfect. And I’m obsessed with the colors. So very spring-y. The only downside: it shows a bit more skin than I’m normally comfortable with. Nothing crazy or anything. But the spaghetti straps require me to wear a strapless bra which is inconvenient while breastfeeding (but I won’t be breastfeeding forever) and while I don’t mind v-necks, this is a loose-fitting top so I just need to be careful if I bend over lest I spill out (not that there’s much to spill, truth be told!) But it’s nothing a good cami can’t fix! And I found a really pretty one that you’ll see in a minute!

As for the shorts, they come straight off my Pinterest board! They fit perfectly. I love the army green color. I love the cargo style. They go with most everything. Keeper. I love Stitch Fix.

 

Item #3: Adorra Skinny Jean (JUST BLACK) $88

 

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Attica V-Neck Top, Adorra Skinny Jean

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Attica V-Neck Top, Adorra Skinny Jean

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Attica V-Neck Top, Adorra Skinny Jean

I kept on the same shirt to wear with the jeans because the colors work well together! And I added a lace extender cami from Grace and Lace because I just got it and really wanted to see how it would look. It’s not the BEST combo with this particular top but it does make it a bit more modest 😉  Anyway, this is about the jeans! Stop distracting me.  I was a little nervous about the pink color. Because let’s just say it…they’re pink pants. But the fit is wonderful and I can wear them with a lot more than I thought I could initially. I’m being brave. I’m being bold. I’m keeping the pink pants!

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Attica V-Neck Top, Adorra Skinny Jean

Gorgeous, right?

Almost done!

 

Item #4: Jesslyn Dress (FUN2FUN) $48

 

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Jesslyn Dress

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Jesslyn Dress

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Jesslyn Dress

I’ll be honest. I couldn’t figure out how to wear this dang dress. I think it’s probably because it was a bit too small. But I fiddled and fussed with it for way too long. I couldn’t figure out how far down on my shoulder it was supposed to go, where the ruffle should be placed in relation to my boobs and every time I adjusted that, the elastic part at my waist would move and look totally off, and anytime I even so much as thought about raising my arms, the sleeves would pop up over my shoulders. Then I thought “maybe it’s supposed to be there”…but no, that didn’t look right. “This HAS to be an off-the-shoulder-dress!” Needless to say, I’m not keeping this dress lol. I just wasn’t comfortable in it. BUT…it sure does look cute, right? Great color. Lightweight. Cute ruffle with little pom-poms hanging from it.

Oh, and one of the best things about this fix- everything is machine-washable. My stylist knows that this mom-of-3 lifestyle doesn’t allow for much “dry clean only” in my life 😀

 

Item #5: Serina Perforated Wedge (REPORT FOOTWEAR) $60

 

Stitch Fix #30- A Spring Fix! Serina Perforated Wedge

I asked for a neutral wedge sandal and that’s exactly what I got. While I love the color and the height of these, I just didn’t love the style. The perforated thing doesn’t bother me, I just didn’t like the straps. Covers too much of the top of my foot I think…. I’m picky. We’ll keep trying in the next fix to find the winners. But these ain’t it.

(For more shots of these sandals on- see the pics above with the blue dress!)

 

To Recap:

  1. Attica V-Neck Tank Top: KEEP
  2. Chester Cargo Short: KEEP
  3. Adorra Skinny Jean: KEEP
  4. Jesslyn Dress: RETURN
  5. Serina Perforated Wedge: RETURN

I’m excited to add those 3 keepers to my wardrobe! Keep an eye out for those pink pants. I’m on a hunt now to find even more tops to wear with them (perhaps I’ll blog about it…”What To Wear with Pink Pants”). Stay tuned!

 

I’ve linked-up again with some other bloggers to share our fixes! This is a great way to discover more “pinnable” items for your Pinterest board to share with your stylist and see what all Stitch Fix has to offer! Check it out!

Ready to try Stitch Fix for yourself after reading all these reviews?! Order your fix and let me know how it works out!

Stitch Fix Review #29

Welcome to my first review since the big move: Stitch Fix Review #29! It was really fun taking these photos with a new backdrop. I love that I have a few options now- inside the house with glowy natural light in the living room, outside in the backyard with some greenery/fence action, or right up against our BLUE house! In front of the red front door is another option, but I’d be kind of embarrassed to”model” right out front for all the neighbors to see haha. So, for this shoot- we went with the blue house backdrop.

*Note: this post contains affiliate links. If a purchase is made using one of my links, I will receive a small commission which helps support this blog so I can keep writing these reviews for all of you 🙂 

As I’ve said several times before, Stitch Fix was a LIFESAVER for me as a new mom, approaching my 30’s, trying to figure out my style and the best fit for my body. Over the course of 2 years worth of fixes, they had pretty much replaced my entire wardrobe. So I started getting more specific with my requests for special occasions or certain items I was pining for.

For this particular “birthday fix” (it came right before my birthday), I asked for “going out” pieces for date nights or girl’s nights. Items that I would not necessarily wear during the day around my kids. I was very pleased with what my stylist delivered- and especially loved all the bright, bold colors! I tend to get a lot of neutrals and a lot black in my fixes and trunks (for good reason, I almost always keep them lol). But I wanted more color in my wardrobe, and that’s what I’m getting now. Hooray!

Stitch Fix Review #29

 

1. Jax Filagree Drop Earrings, BAY TO BAUBLES- $28 (KEPT)

I didn’t get a great shot of the earrings other than the photo above, but I’m wearing them in all the other photos too. I didn’t have any earrings like this until now and I know I’ll wear them with just about anything, whenever I’m in a gold jewelry mood (which seems to be quite often recently). So these were no-brainer keepers.

 

2. Charleene Woven Hem Split Back Knit Top, COLLETTE $38 (RETURNED)

Stitch Fix Review #29 Charleene Woven Hem Split Back Knit Top

Stitch Fix Review #29 Charleene Woven Hem Split Back Knit Top

Stitch Fix Review #29 Charleene Woven Hem Split Back Knit Top

While I love the red color, the soft fabric and the woven hemline- I ended up returning this. Mostly because of the sheer back. I don’t like that you can see my bra strap..and even the bumps of the straps underneath it. I already have too many tops that I need to wear a cami underneath and I just want more things that I can wear by itself, ya know? I’m almost on fix #30 so I’m getting picky lol. I do need more of this color in my wardrobe though so I’ll be asking for another red top in the future. And I really do love that kind of hem. Sigh…

 

Maisha Ponte and Faux Leather Jacket, EDYSON $88 (RETURNED)

Stitch Fix Review #29 Maisha Ponte and Faux Leather Jacket

Stitch Fix Review #29 Maisha Ponte and Faux Leather Jacket

Stitch Fix Review #29 Maisha Ponte and Faux Leather Jacket

This faux leather jacket is pretty much perfect. It’s such a great piece to add a little “edge” to any outfit. It was super comfortable and looked amazing with the outfit I had on. I also love the open drape front. So you’re probably wondering why the heck I returned it lol. Well, it’s because I JUST got my first REAL black leather jacket from Trunk Club about a week earlier. So it didn’t make sense for me to keep this since the “black leather jacket” category is already covered in my wardrobe now.

4. Castello Scallop Hem Blouse, ALICE BLUE $44 (KEPT)

Stitch Fix Review #29 Castello Scallop Hem Blouse

Stitch Fix Review #29 Castello Scallop Hem Blouse

Stitch Fix Review #29 Castello Scallop Hem Blouse

Stitch Fix Review #29 Castello Scallop Hem Blouse

This is a perfect “going-out” blouse. It does require a strapless bra which made it lose a FEW points, but again…it’s for going out. I can make a little extra effort haha. I love the royal blue color and the scallop hemline (such a cute detail). The back is cute too. It was my husband’s favorite out of the entire fix, so that helped make my decision a little easier 🙂 Keeper.

5. Alexis Dress, FRENCH GREY $48 (RETURNED)

Stitch Fix Review #29 Alexis Dress

Stitch Fix Review #29 Alexis Dress

Stitch Fix Review #29 Alexis Dress

Sadly, this dress didn’t fit. Too big in the chest area…story of my life lol. Also, I’m not really big in to wearing bright pink. Had it fit me well enough and I wanted to give it a try, I would probably pair it with a jacket or cardigan to tone down all the pink. But it is a cute dress and would look great on someone else! It’s also a really great price for a Stitch Fix dress!

So, what do you think of my fix? If you see anything you like, be sure to pin it to your own Pinterest board so your stylist can see!

Before I go, just want to remind you about an exciting announcement that Stitch Fix made this week– they launched Plus Size! I’m thrilled that this amazing service is available to more women now. Well done, Stitch Fix!

Ready to try it for yourself? Sign up now!!

To read some other Stitch Fix reviews, check out the latest link-up hosted by Maria at Crazy Together!