Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Nostalgia for the 90's

Blanket Scarf | (thrifted)
Sonoma Corduroy Skirt | (thrifted) similar here
 OTK boots | Charlotte Russe
Purse | (thrifted) this one is pretty too
Similar Sunglasses

Who would've thought that corduroy would come back around to being on trend again. I'll admit that I didn't. But, when I spotted this Sonoma skirt tucked into a rack at my local thrift shop, my thirteen year old self did a little happy dance. And then my current self did! LOL And then I snatched it up and started pondering outfit ideas.

I love it! It's such a great texture. It really amazes me how fashion tends to circle around, ya know? That would definitely explain the major craving I've had to binge watch Friends on Netflix lately because, their style? Definitely on point right now. 

 This look was so easy to put together and gave me all the nostalgic feels for my adolescence. Mostly about how I knew nothing about style then and what to pair with what or what absolutely NOT to pair with what but, also about the carefree, innocent life I had but never really appreciated. I think that's so true for us, the majority of the time. We're living a dream and yet we're pining ahead to the life we think we want. Not only does that make us less intentional about the decisions we're making now but,  goodness think of what we could be missing. So often I catch myself thinking, wow, how did we get here??.. When did we grow up and become parents and when did this place start looking like a house and why did I use to think twenty eight was so old?! I still feel so new at this parenting gig and like I'm making a million mistakes a day and that, really I'm just coasting along until it's time to get back to real life. But, then I remember, this is it. THIS is my life. These are my kids and that is my husband and HOLY COW how blessed am I. My ten year high school reunion is coming up this year and while it's being organized, some of my fellow piers created a facebook group for us to share updates and memories in. Seeing all of the people I grew up with and where they are today was really a major reality check for me. A little bit in that maybe I'm not exactly where I saw myself being ten years from graduation. But, also in realizing that I could not have imagined this life with this crew if I had wanted to. I'm blessed friends. And so are you. It's time that we tune our focus in to where we are right now. Plan for the future, yes. Do our best to think long term for the ones we love, absolutely. But, don't miss what's right in front of you because, before we know they'll be grown up. They'll go out on their own and our arms will feel empty. We'll have all the time in the world for what we want to do but all we'll want is for them to be back home. I'm relishing in my boys today. In this life I've been given. And though I'm so excited for the future, where we'll be as a family, what future places we'll get to experience together and the relationships I'll have with my boys, I so want to enjoy this phase of life that we're in. Because, even though it's hard and crazy and physically and emotionally draining at times, I know that these are the times I'll miss the most when my family is grown and my house is quiet. 

So, look to the future and be excited for that. But, don't forget to soak in the memories and LIVE the life you have right now. 

Monday, January 23, 2017

White Out + Evolving Hairstyles

Lace Sleeve Top | similar here + here
Cozy Scarf | similar here
Distressed Denim | Maurices
Jeweled Flats | Ninewest (thrifted but I love these + these)
Purse | similar

Has everybody heard the phrase "short hair, don't care"? Yes? As a person with short hair I'd like to say that although most days I probably can identify with that, some days I just don't. That's when I miss my long hair like craazzzy and ask myself a million times over why, oh why, did I ever cut it. . .

It's been just over a year since my long pixie cut and my hair is finally grown out enough to attempt a few different hairstyles. Most of the time it's still blowdryed with a curling brush or styled into loose waves but, sometimes I can actually get it to stay up. For a family day this past weekend I decided to try a loose bun with second day hair. It worked so well and lasted long into the evening. I started with slight curls from the day before so I straightened out some of the hair close to my face and around the bottom of my hairline. I moved my part over a little more than usual and used TRESemme Fresh Start Volumizing Dry Shampoo to get rid of any extra oil and add a little more texture and volume. Then I teased the back and sides in layers and very lightly combed the top before tying it into a low pony tail. I teased the hair hanging out of pony a little to give it more volume and then used a Goody brand clear elastic to roll it into a bun. What little hair that was trying to pop out, I pinned in and under the bun with some Goody blonde bobbies so they'd be less noticeable. Then I just pulled up a little on the hair on  my crown and around the top of my head and let a few wisps fall out around my face before spraying it well with TRESemme TRES TWO Extra Hold Hairspray. Good to go and time approved by my hubby and little boys.

We had unusually warm temps that day so I also decided to switch up my momiform just a smidge. I went with this pretty lace detail top, a cozy scarf, some comfy, distressed boyfriend denim and a feminine flat to override a little of the grunge. A combination I've not ever really tried before but, ultimately loved. Turns out white on white on white can be super soothing and do major things for all the stress we accumulate throughout the week. Sometimes a day full of simplicity and doing what you love, with the ones that make it all worth it, is just what a momma needs.

See more hairstyle inspo for short and long hair on my pinterest board here.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Winter Style Inspo

Mary Kay Skinvigorate Cleansing Brush
Chunky Sweaters 1, 2, 3
Cozy Scarves 1, 2
Faux Leather Jacket (similar)
Faux Leather Notebook
 Ruffle Sleeve Top | DIY by me (similar here + here)
The winter blues are starting to hit hard over here, with Christmas over and no other real holidays to get us in a celebratory mood till Valentine's Day. But, I find that a fresh dose of perspective (and a little extra chocolate) always helps me get my jive back. Right now, that's in the form of lazy days at home, Nesquick chocolate milk, a few easy beauty treatments, striving to get back into my Bible and pinning outfit inspo to get me through the winter. Some of my favorite ways to brighten my mood or make my days feel a little lighter are 1| painting my nails (though it's such a rare occurrence lately), 2| freeing our schedule up to include more down time and 3| purging the house, closets, counters and rooms of unneeded/unused things. 

Personally, I think winter days were made for staying home, cozying up to the fire in our jammies with a warm blanket, a bowl of ice cream and a good movie/binge show or game with the family. All of those comfort things we think of when we're tired and stressed and just want some free time. That's a hard thing to come by as moms but, if you plan a little, you can totally make it happen. I've been able to sync Blake and Tyler's nap times recently and that has worked WONDERS for my afternoons. Lucas and JD get the downstairs playtime they ask for all during school work and I get a good hour and a half to write on the blog, speed through some to-dos, straighten up from the morning, read a little in my Bible study or just zone out (which usually means turning on Friends and scrolling through my apps). Plus, I'm not trying to keep as many kiddos quiet which is helpful in getting those good, long naps in. 

I love doing little things to boost my self confidence when I know we're going to be stuck at home for a few days (#icestorm2017). Some of those include whitening strips, face masks, pore cleansers, anything I wouldn't normally have time for on a regular basis when our schedule is jam packed. I used to paint my nails about every two weeks or so to keep them looking fresh and clean but, lately there just hasn't been time. Tyler is still up two to three times a night to nurse and that kind of throws out my whole "paint them an hour before bed" plan. I've found that it works well to paint them that far in advance and then let them sit overnight to harden. They don't get smudged if I keep my hands outside the blankets and they're nice and ready the next day so I don't have to be as careful doing stuff around the house. It works. But, I've had to take a break from that the last few months with mister Tyler's sleeping habits. I did just get a pretty, new Essie (Lady Like) polish though so, I'm excited to try it out in the next day or so (hopefully on a night that Tyler sleeps unusually long)!

It always feels good to purge things and I've found that if I wait until I have motivation to do so I am much more efficient at it. When I'm rearranging after the holidays or putting clothes away after folding them both seem to be good "purge" times for me. Or if I've finished up my to-do list for the week (though that's pretty rare too) and need something to focus my energy on while the boys play. I like to take their unused toys/books/shoes to Crosslines or the Salvation Army and usually pack up clothes that we no longer wear to take them to our local consignment shop. It works well for me because then I can use my credit from selling them to get things we need or want later. With four growing boys who are constantly wearing out clothes, that's been a life saver. And, who doesn't love the extra space and openness when we're stuck inside so much during those cold months.

Need more inspiration?...What do you do to gain extra inspiration through the winter?


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Sunday Thoughts

Sweater Dress // thrifted (I'm loving the fit and style of this one)
Wrap Cardigan // (couldn't find it but I like the style and drape of this one)
Nude Pumps // thrifted (love these)
Tassle Purse // Jane.com deal (another pretty option)
Earrings // Sole Society

So, a few thoughts.

1| All the things are starting back up this week and, as of last friday, I was really feeling the pressure. To clean the house, have a smooth newborn session on Monday, accomplish school everyday with Lucas (and Blake because when he sees Lucas doing it, it's going to be necessary for him to do his as well..), get JD back into the routine of doing his lessons on the computer while also juggling piano lesson and daily practice (which, let's face it, isn't always sunshine and roses), editing and keeping up with sessions and all the routine tasks around the house that no one notices unless they're not done. Bleh. We had a full day out yesterday after a week at home due to the crazy, icey, blustery weather and it was so, so nice to be among people again. It also helped me kick some of my funk because, all of a sudden, I'm not feeling so stressed anymore. I guess five straight days at home will help you feel more on top of things too. So, after a little tidying up today, I'm ready for this week (I think).

2| I want to share why I'm happy and joyful and all that God has blessed me with but, I feel like it's getting harder to do so without someone bashing or blaming you for something you've said or didn't say. Why? Why do people insist on making something out of nothing and why can't we all just be grateful once in a while? I know life is hard, it really stinks sometimes. But, I have so much more good than bad in my life and if I can brighten even one person's day by sharing my happy moments then, by golly, that's what I'm going to do. I want to spread my joy around as much as I can because I might need someone else to do just that for me someday. 

3| I started my Alexa Jean Fitness Leg & Butt routine again this past week and I am SO feeling it. It sounds crazy weird but, I love it! There are for sure days that I have zero motivation to do more than what's absolutely necessary around the house but, I always feel so, so good after fitting in a workout. This is by far the best and most easy going routine I've ever done and the results have been truly amazing. I try not to share too much negativity on here, especially self doubt stuff. But, I am feeling so great I just want to inspire you a little. I have never felt good about my legs. Not as a teenager and never as an adult. I just don't feel like my upper thigh down to my knee area is anything that I'm proud of. I was chunky as a kid and I've never been the "hit the gym, hard core workout" type girl so I've never really toned up. But, since about week 6 of the workout, I started seeing amazing results and this is going to sound crazy but, now, I have knees! ... I seriously don't think I'm overweight or obese or fat or whatever else you want to call it. I don't have issues with my body image. I'm just over the moon excited that I am finally looking and feeling the way I've always wanted to. If you're looking for a good, motivating, result yielding workout for this new year, go check out her site (Alexajeanfitness.com)! She has such good work ethic and the plans are super easy to follow. I promise, you won't regret it. 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

A New Approach to A New Year

Dress // thrifted
Slip dress // thrifted
Black Exclusive Leggings // Simple Addiction
Booties // Walmart
Tassle Bag // Jane.com (similar)
Earrings // Sole Society

It's here. That time of year where we all sit down and make a list of our resolutions and then share them with everyone else so we can feel a little more accountable to stick to them. We write down everything we want to accomplish in the coming months and how we want to improve ourselves for the better. I know that it's nothing new to say that I have some resolutions of my own or that they're probably similar to the ones I've made every year for the past several years. Being healthier, more active, less focused on me. I have those. But, this year, I'm more focused on settings goals and priorities instead of "resolutions". I'm trying to be more purposeful about what, and who, I spend my time on and more pro-active about getting rid of all the excess. The self doubt, the junk and the negativity. I recently read a little quote that said something along the lines of, no one is stopping you from being who you want to be, except you. No one is stopping you from doing the things you want to do, except you. Stop blaming others for who you are, or aren't, or the life you're living, or missing, and go out and create it for yourself. YES. That's what I want to do in the coming year. 

I want to be more purposeful about choosing happiness over depression, openness over fear and love over neglect. I want to be the one that invites the new mom to a play date and the visitor at church to sit with us in (what's left of) our pew. The one that isn't afraid to put myself out there for fear of rejection but, instead jumps (or hurdles myself) at new opportunities for fear of what I could MISS if I didn't. I want to be intentional about showing love to my boys each and every day as much as I possibly can. In the little moments, and the big. To be the one they know they can share with and hoping that I become the one they eventually WANT to share with. It's becoming all too apparent to me that this life is fragile. The years of having our children close to us are fleeting, they don't last nearly long enough. Everyday I look at my boys and think, wow. When did you become such an awesome little boy and man, I sure hope I remember this when you're older. I'm quickly learning that I won't always have the luxury of having them home with me and the freedom to spend time with them whenever and however I want to. Time is a thief that way. There's nothing I can really do about it, except for taking advantage of what I have right now. In this moment. Not dwelling on what I wish was mine or pining for the future. If I'm constantly thinking ahead, I just might miss what's right in front of me in the present. 

I want to soak up every sloppy kiss and squeeze around the neck. Every body slam and tug at my hand. The way Blake throws his whole weight on top of us when he wants to get rowdy. Or the way Tyler looks at me when I round the corner to get him up from nap, like it's been a lifetime since he saw me last. The way he stretches his arms out as far as they'll go until he can grab hold of my hand, my arm, or anything that's within reach. He just loves to touch me. There are days when I definitely feel "touched out" but I try to never reject his affection, even for a moment. These may seem like little things to some but, to me? They're what I live for.

I'm so proud of (and slightly annoyed at) the way JD has grown up in these last few months. He's becoming a young man and not a little boy and there are days when I think, my goodness, when did that happen.. But, I know I've been here for all of it. Every smile and every tantrum. I haven't missed it and that, that makes me happy. I'm thankful for the boy that I see my Lucas becoming every day. The one who loves to poke fun at his brothers and tattles nearly every chance he can get. But, will also be the first to rescue them if they've gotten hurt or grab a tissue if they need their nose wiped. He's got such a sweet soul and a tender heart and it hurts me that the world will try to harden it someday. So I'll teach him while I can, love him while I can, hug him while I can and grow with him, while I can. And try my darndest to be joyful in the process. 

There are days when I honestly look at my life and think, how on earth did I ever deserve this. Four of the best kids around and a husband who works so hard to give us the world. He is the first, best decision I made and I thank the Lord for him every single day. Giving him more of my good days is high on my priority list this year. It can be so tough to be Momma all day and then try to remember that I was his first. I want him to have more of my smiles, more of my happy and more of my intentional joy. I want to show him how much I love him and speak to him in the way he needs me to. To be the wife he doesn't even know he's missing.

This year is going to be a big one for me. I'm determined to focus on the good, the blessings and the highs and let loose of the sadness and little failures that I feel each and every day. At the Wilson Christmas this year, Glen's Poppie pulled out some old movies of Christmases past when he and Grammie were raising their two daughters and I couldn't help but notice that every time the camera panned across the room and Grammie would be on the screen, she would be smiling. 

That's going to be me this year. I have no doubt that we'll go through tough times and feel incredible lows but, I also know that God has it all under control. The sickness, the pain, the sadness and depression. The money troubles and the stress. None of it is mine. I'm merely living in the midst of it and the least I can do is be joyful for the good things that are there. For the home I'm living in and the family that surrounds me, the food that fills my pantry and the clothes in our closets. We have SO. MUCH. more than so many people and there isn't a day that goes by that the magnitude of that is lost on me. I am so blessed. 

Happiest New Year. I pray so much that you will see the blessings of your life and not the things that try to take away from it. Let's all make a pact to be the best versions of ourselves in 2017. If you need a little help figuring out just who that is, I know right where you should start. :)