Postpartum Hair (again)

January 10, 2017


If you’re anything like my husband, then you’re probably bored with hearing me talk about my hair woes over the last (nearly) two years. It’s been a constant battle for me, and it seems almost comical that my baby is going to be two next month and I’m still talking about “postpartum hair” as if it just happened six months ago.

I’ve been troubled by postpartum hair loss and subsequent re-growth since Ainsley was four months old and the hair loss started. I look back with envy at my hair while pregnant with Ainsley – thick, full and very healthy – as it’s a start contrast with what I’m dealing with today. I experienced two “waves” of hair loss, one around 4 months when I stopped breastfeeding and another about a year after having Ainsley. My scalp was itchy, my hair felt thin and lifeless and I was distressed to say the least.

Thankfully my hair has been growing back in the areas where I experienced the most hair loss, mainly my temples and the back of my head, but I have various lengths of short and medium-length re-growth everywhere. And while I’ve found ways to hide it well, as evidenced in the photo above, it’s still been a constant source of frustration.

So what’s a girl to do? Well, I’m not entirely sure. I’ve debated chopping it off to even out all the length differences I have going on, but I’m undecided if I really want to give up the length I have in favor of a shorter cut. But I really have a hard time committing to a cut, especially while pregnant since I find longer hair much easier and more flattering on me.

Where does that leave me? Well, I think I’ve settled on giving Monat a try first. I posted about the hair struggles I’ve been having and got a ton of recommendations regarding Monat’s hair care systems. I’ve never heard of the products before, but after doing a little research I figured it was worth a shot before doing anything more permanent. I’ll be sure to report back on whether the products actually live up to the hype and the price point!

I’ve also heard great things about supplemental collagen, so I ordered this brand from Amazon. After doing a bit more research the safety of taking collagen while pregnant seems uncertain so I’ll be waiting until after the baby is born to start taking it, but I’m hopeful that adding this into my diet helps with hair health and re-growth. I’m planning on incorporating it into my diet in daily smoothies.

So now I’m turning it over to you! Do any of you moms have advice or suggestions on easing this transition and hopefully lessening the hair loss the second time around? I’m all ears!

Family, Pregnancy

Baby Hofmeyer #2 is a….

January 9, 2017


GIRL! We are shocked (both of us thought it was a boy) and really, really excited to welcome another little lady into our growing family. I get all teary eyed thinking about Ainsley having a sister to share so many wonderful memories with in the years to come. Although she doesn’t quite understand yet, I keep assuring her that this is the best news of her little life. She keeps running around the house saying, “Baby Margaret!” (all you Daniel Tiger watching moms will appreciate that…)

Since I’ve gone 22 weeks without much of a real pregnancy update, I thought it was high time I did a little mid-pregnancy update for those of you who are curious. I have looked back at my updates from Ainsley’s pregnancy a handful of times and always like comparing this pregnancy to her pregnancy. I really wish I had done more frequent updates this time around.

HOW FAR ALONG? 22 weeks 1 day

FEELING: Lots of kicks! I started feeling pretty consistent kicks around 20 weeks, with a few occasional kicks around 18 or 19 weeks. I really thought I would feel kicks sooner the second time around, but that wasn’t the case. These days little lady is moving all the time.

As for me, I’m feeling pretty good! I’ve been generally sicker this pregnancy than with Ainsley and I’m convinced I’m never really going to feel truly “great” this time around. While I can’t say I’m consistently nauseous these days, it still hits me from time to time and I still have a hard time finding foods that really sound good to eat.

Thanks to consistent workouts, I’m feeling more in shape this time around and more like myself than I think I did with Ainsley, but the pesky groin pain I experienced with my last pregnancy is beginning to bother me again. Regular trips to the chiropractor and lots of stretching will hopefully get me through the rest of this pregnancy relatively comfortably.

WEIGHT GAIN: I gained 10 pounds during the first trimester alone, but the weight gain really slowed down after that. As of 21 weeks, I was up 15 pounds.

CRAVING: Nothing, really! Food generally doesn’t sound good or bad to me right now, and my appetite has slowed down significantly from the first trimester. I still really love orange juice, specifically mixed with sparkling water, apple cider vinegar and stevia. I really can’t stand sugar this time around, and every time I eat something sugary it makes me feel ill, so I’ve been steering clear as much as possible.

DOING: Work on the nursery! Well, just starting to plan for the nursery, really, but the room is cleared out and we have moved Ainsley’s dresser into the baby’s room since Ainsley doesn’t need it anymore. We’ve ordered a crib and have a rug and that’s about it so far.

We’re also renovating the basement and moving my office in to the basement since this baby is taking over my former office, so I’ll have a new dedicated space to work downstairs, which I’m super excited about!


Family, Fashion

Dressing the Bump // 21 Weeks

January 1, 2017




Ribbed Peplum Long Sleeved Maternity Top {Pink Blush Maternity}
Jeans {AG Stella Skinny Maternity Jeans}
Booties {Nordstrom Rack last year}



Peplum Sweater Top {Pink Blush Maternity}
Jeans {AG Stella Skinny Maternity Jeans}
Booties {Nordstrom Rack last year}

Happy New Year, friends! I’m so looking forward to what 2017 has in store, but I’ll admit that 2016 was a year that set the bar pretty high. One of the things I’m most looking forward to in the year to come is welcoming baby #2. Okay, I’m part excited and part terrified, but mainly excited and anxious to meet this baby.

I’ve been on the hunt for cute maternity clothes since I found out I was pregnant. Actually being pregnant isn’t always a glamorous experience, but I’m a big believer that the right clothes can go a long way to helping you feel pretty and comfortable while your body is expanding and changing.

Pink Blush has been on my radar since I was pregnant the last time around. They have such adorable maternity clothes at really affordable prices, which I appreciate since pregnancy is a relatively short period of time. These two tops have quickly become my favorites during this pregnancy. They have enough room to be maternity without screaming “maternity!”

Bonus for Espresso and Cream readers! Pink Blush is giving away a $75 Pink Blush gift card to one lucky reader. Enter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Working Out While Pregnant // Second Trimester Edition

December 30, 2016


*I am not a medical professional and this post should not be taken as medical advice. Please consult your doctor before beginning any fitness program, especially during pregnancy. 

Hello! It’s me again. I feel like I’ve gone into a sort of blog hiatus of sorts, with my website crashing right before Thanksgiving, taking it out of commission for two weeks, and then the holidays and getting sick right after Christmas. Well, needless to say that I’m looking forward to a fresh start in January. Anyone else?

The other day I was looking back at my pregnancy updates from when I was pregnant with Ainsley, and I’m embarrassed that I haven’t done any pregnancy updates with this baby. Things are still going well, and we have our big ultrasound next week Tuesday. We are not planning on finding out the gender this time around – we’ll see if we stick to our plan when we are actually at the appointment.

I’ve gotten quite a few questions this pregnancy about workouts and what I’ve been doing to stay active. Since it’s been a while since I last updated about pregnancy fitness, I thought I would clue you in to what’s been going on over here.


As most of you know, I took a very conservative approach to working out with Ainsley’s pregnancy. I mainly walked a lot on the treadmill and did very light weights. While my weight gain was right in the middle of the recommended average, I didn’t feel great during her pregnancy. I had a lot of groin pain through most of the pregnancy and generally didn’t feel like myself because I wasn’t sweating and working out like usual.

This time around I battled a lot of the same fears during the first trimester. I was probably in the best shape of my life before getting pregnant this time and working out quite vigorously most days, so I certainly scaled back my workouts to accommodate both the nausea and the delicate nature of the first trimester. That said, I didn’t let exercise take a back-burner. I stuck to a lot of my favorite Beachbody workouts online, doing modifiers as necessary, as well as long walks, occasional jogs and plenty of pilates.


Once the second trimester hit, I felt more peace about working out. Something about knowing that I had made it through the first 12 weeks really gave me the confidence to boost the intensity of my workouts a bit while also being mindful of the fact that I’m pregnant.

I’ve continued to work out most days of the week, reminding myself that it’s only going to get harder as I get larger if I don’t work out now. It also helps me to think about pregnancy as a time to prepare my body for child birth to the best of my ability. Child birth is taxing physically, as is recovery, so thinking about training my body for what is to come has helped put exercise into proper perspective and encouraged me to keep up the hard work.

My favorite workouts right now are mainly Beachbody workouts. I use the Beachbody On Demand online through my sister-in-law, Amber, and have some purchased programs as well.

My Favorites
21 Day Fix and 21 Day Fix Extreme // I do these videos the most frequently. I really love that they are a nice mix of challenging while also providing modifiers as necessary. I’m modifying now to avoid lying on my back and modifying some of the abdominal exercises, but otherwise I find them to be pretty pregnancy-friendly.

Core De Force // Also on Beachbody, I was hesitant to try this series of videos because I thought it would be too challenging for pregnancy, but they’ve been a fun addition to my workouts and I hardly feel like I’m working out at all!

22 Minute Hard Corps // I’ve loved these short and sweet workouts for quite a while and find that they are almost all still very friendly for pregnancy with few modifications needed. Plus, they are only 22 minutes!

Other Workouts
Crossfit // I’ve just started to go again on the weekends with Joe and am happy to be back. I find that I need to do a LOT of modifications to make the workouts pregnancy friendly, but Joe is patient and everyone is really supportive so that helps. Plus, it’s always a great workout.

Walking // Since the weather has been cold I haven’t done nearly as much walking as before, but when it’s nice I find it’s great exercise and always feels good on my body.

Pilates, Yoga, Stretching // Usually I just find a good video online. It feels good to stay flexible and put plenty of focus on mobility while pregnant.

What’s Off The Table?
Running // As much as I would love for running to work for me while pregnant, it just doesn’t. I have tried a couple times and it just doesn’t sit well with my pregnant body. Thanks to regular chiropractic care, the groin pain I experienced with Ainsley is almost non-existent this time around, but running seems to trigger it for days afterward. I’m totally okay with leaving running off the table for now and resuming once I am cleared to exercise after baby arrives.

So there you have it! I think more than anything, staying active has really helped me to continue to feel like “me” when so many things about me are changing. It’s always challenging to see your body change in such major ways during pregnancy but knowing that I’m doing my part to stay fit and active puts my mind in the right place to handle all the changes coming my way.



Potsafe :: safer cooking with kids

December 15, 2016

This post is sponsored by Potsafe in association with The Women Bloggers. As always, all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that support E&C! #safecooking 

When I became a parent, one of the things I looked forward to most was being able to cook with my daughter from a young age. I remember my mom giving me so much freedom in the kitchen, cooking and mixing and helping her along the way, and it really helped foster a love of cooking from a young age. Hey, it even became my career! As Ainsley has grown into a toddler (cue all the bittersweet tears…) I’ve enjoyed letting her help more in the kitchen with me. She loves to stand next to the mixer and watch it turn, and help add ingredients to the mixing bowl along the way. It’s a total mess, but I love watching her have so much fun!



One of the areas that we’ve struggled with, however, has been the stove top. Ainsley is always coming close to my legs and the hot pans when I cook, and despite telling her many times to steer clear because it’s “hot!” she is a little stubborn. While she has never actually grabbed a hot pan, I’m constantly watching her like a hawk to be sure she is a safe distance away.

Enter Potsafe, a kitchen safety accessory that secures your pots to your cooktop to prevent burns. It’s great for kiddos, but also has a wide variety of uses including for your elderly family members that may have issues steadily gripping a pot or pan. We put the Potsafe to the test at my sister-in-law’s house this week and it performed well! I loved how easy it was to set up and install, and the grip on the pot was very secure. We actually have a gas stove at home so this particular style of Potsafe won’t work at our house, but I’m hopeful that they have plans for a gas stove version sometime in the future!

There’s still time to order for your holiday gift giving. Check it out over on Amazon!