We made it - hooray! Our favorite reads below:
I love Olivia's style - she always looks pulled together, classic, and original. This look is right up my alley with the laid-back jeans and tank combined with statement heels and bag. You probably already own most of these pieces or ones like them. Here's how to recreate the look at both the Splurge and Save levels:
I wish I'd bought the Stuart Weitzman NearlyNude sandals years ago. They're definitely a look that's still going strong. The block heel and ankle strap make for easy wearing. I'm not even going to include a "Splurge" tank because the Save options are amazing and all you need!
Good morning! Some of our favorite reads are below, including our weekly email. Not signed up yet? Get with it!
- If you are a fan of a simple black and white look, this email is for you.
- A list (with pictures!) of Princess Kate's very lovely gifts from William. Each one has thought behind it- are you surprised?
- Most of us cannot live without our iPhones (see how to here), but not everyone was on board from the get-go.
- We love Talenti and love re-using the jars for our lunch. See other ways to use the cute little jars, also a reason to eat more ice cream!
- Do you like my hat? A hilarious review of Go, Dog Go! that is as truthful as it is funny.
Did you know that "multi-tasking" is scientifically impossible? Yeah, it scared us too. At every waking minute, something is nagging for my attention and most of the time it is on my cell phone. Even when my brain is fully focused on work, a project or my dinner or coffee date companion, the phone cries for attention with the ominous buzzing noise. After lost days of flipping between computer screens, instantly replying to texts, looking at that funny snap, I've established some rules for myself which have completely elevated my productivity level.
Timer. The timer on my phone is one of my favorite tools- I routinely set it for 30 minutes. I tell myself, put in 30 uninterrupted minutes on this project and then you can take a break. It's ridiculous, but it works wonders. Take a break and if you need another 30 you can start again. Very rarely someone needs you impulsively during 30 minutes. When I worry about this, I think about the 80's. It was impossible to reach someone at will and we were all fine.
Side List. Old habits die hard. Sometimes in the middle of the timer running, a topic or to-do comes strolling through my brain that is unrelated to my current work. I want to hop out of the project and go do said task "because it is so easy to just get done." But, it also takes you off task. It takes on average 23 minutes to get back on task after you've been interrupted. <cue freakout here> To alleviate interruptions, I keep a short list to the right of my computer where I quickly jot down one or two words to remind me of that item and get right back to the project.
DND Mode. Iphone features a do-not-disturb feature that you can turn on and off for at will and/or at a set time. I have my phone automatically go to "DND" mode at 9:00 every night. Alerts still come through but your phone doesn't buzz, light up or ring. Figure out how to set this up here.
Conscious Uncoupling. The most productive way to keep your brain between the lines? Hit DND mode and put your phone in your purse, bag or out of sight. You won't miss anything in 30 minutes and with one task at hand, your brain will be ready for all that heavy lifting.
What about you? Any hacks you are particularly fond of to get your brain focused on the right stuff? Please share!
Hello and happy end to a short week! I'm still very confused about what day it is. What I've been reading this week:
- Found this post from Elizabeth Gilbert incredibly sweet and moving. On a bad day on a city bus: "Rage was in the air; no mercy would be found here."
- Our favorite sale picks in red, white and blue here.
- On having two careers - a convincing argument.
- Got the travel bug? The one country that completely surprised Anthony Bourdain.
Find yourself using the pregnant emoji lately? Then you may have felt the pain that is maternity dressing. At 6ish months, I feel like I've finally gotten to a system that works for me. Thoughts on what has helped below.
Make a capsule wardrobe as soon as your regular clothes stop fitting. For me, this meant moving all of the clothes that I didn't anticipate wearing in the next 9 months into another closet. This really helped my mood and sense of wellbeing in the morning. It feels terrible to sort through clothes that don't fit you to find the few that still do. You'll probably want to repeat the purging every 3 months or so since your size will continue to change. As time went on, I found myself moving more and more out of my normal closet and into our guest room closet. What's left is very minimal (about 25-30 items), which is actually a great feeling. I organized my closet in this order (front to back): dresses, toppers (blazers, vests, kimonos, etc.), pants, shirts. Once I'd made space, it was really easy to figure out what I needed to buy.
Filling the void - shop online at a "save" level. My advice is to first place orders at the cheaper places online. Order more than one size and go in knowing that most of it will probably not work. In between months 4 and 5, I placed orders at Target, Old Navy, Asos, Topshop and Loft.
Verdict on these cheaper places:
- Target: hated their maternity workout pants. After Lululemon and Outdoor Voices, I'm spoiled. These non-maternity workout pants ended up being my favorite. I did find and keep some white Liz Lange jeans. Returned everything else.
- Asos: returned almost everything. It was all so cheap, very thin and not made for over 30-year-olds, in my opinion. I am only 5'6 but the dress I ended up keeping was a size "tall" - I appreciated the extra length while pregnant.
- Old Navy: was surprised at how much I liked what I ordered. Kept almost everything (all basics).
- Topshop: found a few pieces that were worth keeping, the rest were too cheap and trendy.
- Loft: the best of this bunch for pieces a bit above basic but still versatile and easy to care for. I know Loft isn't as cheap as the other ones, but they have constant sales and maternity is only available online (at least where I live).
Favorite "save" finds:
Fill in remaining holes at a splurge level. Go try on stuff at A Pea in the Pod. This is basically the only place I've found where you can go try on higher-quality maternity clothing. I only did this once. I went when I was about 5 months in, once I'd weeded through all the cheaper retailers. That way I only filled needs at a higher price point that I knew weren't available elsewhere. I also appreciated the quality difference in the more expensive pieces after trying on all of the cheaper stuff. I signed up for Hatch emails but haven't pulled the trigger on anything yet. I've heard only good things, though.
Favorite "splurge" finds:
Buy spanx made for pregnant people. So many of the dresses sold for pregnant people are made to "show off the bump." This was not exactly my thing until it became impossible to avoid. I am also not one who loves tight clothing in general. What got me more comfortable was buying this shapewear. I originally tried wearing the Spanx I already had, and that was incredibly uncomfortable.
Enjoy the weirdness. Embrace accessories and "third pieces". I'm still working on this but being pregnant really is cool and amazing. When you feel bored wearing the same stuff over and over again, buy a fun new necklace or jewelry. Or, sign up for Rocksbox. It's like Birchbox but for jewelry (and you send everything back each month unless you want to buy). This has helped me feel like myself. Plus, accessories will always fit. Other pieces that have helped me feel pulled together were my special third pieces - silk trench vest, white Club Monaco jacket, favorite blue blazer, Anthro kimono top. These things have also helped jazz up all the basics I've been wearing.
What about you? Any secret tips? I've love to hear in the comments below! We're in this together ladies.