Family, Fashion

KEEP Collective // Memory Piece

July 14, 2016

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It seems fitting that the week I shared about finding hope in miscarriage over at Risen Motherhood, I would also share about a piece of jewelry that honors our babies, both living and in heaven. Holly Peterman, a designer with KEEP Collective, reached out a few months ago about working together to create a custom piece of jewelry, and after some thought I knew what I wanted to create.

After some back and forth with Holly, who was super helpful mocking up design options and inspiration, I settled on this leather bracelet adorned with two arrows (one for each of our babies in heaven) flanking the letter “A” for Ainsley.

I am so impressed by the quality of the jewelry and the endless options for creating something that felt personal and unique. For someone like me, who doesn’t love the look of traditional keepsake jewelry, this is much  more my style. Looking through the look book that Holly included with my order already has me dreaming about my next piece of jewelry. The collection includes everything from bracelets to earrings, watches and key fobs.

Holly was so sweet to agree to hosting a KEEP Collective Mystery Hostess Social, meaning that when you shop using the link below, you will be entered to win the host rewards from the social. It’s a great deal for whoever wins while supporting a fellow small business owner.

Shop Espresso and Cream’s Mystery Hostess KEEP Collective Social
PS: If you want more details, there is also a Facebook group set up for the social. 

*This post was sponsored by KEEP Collective by Holly Peterman, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the businesses that help keep Espresso and Cream running. 

Family, Fashion

Denim Shorts for Moms

July 11, 2016

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I know we’re already half way through the summer, but it took me about that long to find good shorts for summertime. Now that I’m a mom, I feel like there is a little bit more of an obligation to dress with a bit more modesty, but I’m not about to hang up my denim cut-offs in favor of Bermuda shorts. I’m sorry, I just can’t.

So, I’ve scoured the internet for the best shorts, asked you for recommendations, and tried on pair after pair and here are my favorites!

ALL-AROUND WINNER // American Eagle Tomgirl Midi Shorts
Pretty much the perfect pair of shorts in my book. Comfortable, relaxed fit; short but not too short that you feel uncomfortable wearing them. I have both the frayed pair and a pair without any rips and wear them all the time. They run a tad large, so order a size down.

BEST DEAL // Old Navy Boyfriend Cuffed Shorts 
For only $12.95, these shorts are a steal! I don’t own them personally, but I’ve tried them on in the store and they are really cute! If you’re not sure you want to invest in a pair of shorts, these are a very low-risk option.

BEST SPLURGE // Mavi Jeans “Emily” destroyed cutoff denim shorts 
These are the most expensive pair in the bunch, but I’m telling you that they are sooo incredibly comfortable. Extra bonus points? When my little sister (who is a teenager) was around me last week, she said they were cool.

Madison

Fashion

How to Style Your Lob (Long Bob)

June 30, 2016

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A week ago, I decided (nay, my stylist decided) that cutting off two inches was a good idea for the health of my hair. And while I’m never a big fan of getting a hair cut, I have to admit that having blunt, healthy ends and a little more style to my cut really does feel good.

My hair is just a little too short to be considered a true “lob” but I’ve been styling it like I would if it was just a little shorter. Messy, beachy curls that take just a few minutes to style. The look is perfect for any time but especially appropriate for summer.

PS: The only styling products you need is this amazing Sea Salt Style Spray + your favorite hair spray.

Family

these are the good old days

June 27, 2016

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There are no words to describe the joy it brings me being Ainsley’s mom. This child of mine? Well, like any other mom on the planet, I think she’s the most amazing, special and delightful kid I’ve ever met. After we got over the craziness of the newborn days, which weren’t my favorite, I found motherhood to be a fairly natural transition. It was hard to give up the freedom and independence I was accustomed to, but it was nothing compared to what I gained as I took on the role of mom.

All of that said, I try not to over-glamorize motherhood on this blog. It’s wonderful, fulfilling and full of so much good, but it’s also hard work. More often than not, I feel like I’m doing many things but I’m not doing anything really well. Do you know the feeling?

Running your own businesses, juggling childcare schedules that rarely go as planned, managing freelance deadlines that are unpredictable and trying to keep our house in some sort of suitable state while also investing in my faith, fitness, quiet time and marriage while juggling the needs of a toddler? Well, it’s crazy and there’s no way around it.

Sometimes I wonder how we will ever, God willing, manage to add another kid to the mix. I already feel like Joe and I are living in a state of craziness with one kid. What will two or three look like? I’ve never really considered us the type of people who thrive in chaos or a constant barrage of “loud” but I can’t see our house getting quieter any time soon.

But you know what? These days that we’re living in are the best days of our life. I have so many times each week where I feel an almost physical pain longing to stop time, to freeze Ainsley at this age and stage forever. If I could bring time to a screeching halt I probably would have long ago.

Ainsley was boycotting bed time last night, running around the house playing in her kiddie kitchen and dancing in circles around the house and laughing like an over-tired maniac. I couldn’t help but look at her and soak in every bit of her toddler-ness. Life may be crazy (without a doubt!) and I may be running on fumes (almost always!) but I wouldn’t trade sleep, showers, a clean house or a more manageable schedule for anything that we’ve got right now.

Like everyone says: The days are long but the years are short. Enjoy them while you can, momma!

Fashion

Get the Look :: Summer Makeup + Hair

June 23, 2016

SummerMakeup
HAIR //
As you know, I’ve been growing out my hair for quite some time, but the postpartum transition has been hard on my hair. The hair loss and awkward re-growth left my ends super dry and unhealthy, so my stylist finally convinced me yesterday that cutting two inches off and going a little dark on the roots/lighter on the ends was necessary. Although I’ll admit that my hair feels short now, I am seriously loving the spunky feel and healthy ends, which actually serves to make my hair feel fuller.

SummerSkincare

MAKEUP //
Dew Skin Tinted Moisturizer :: My summer go-to. Lightweight coverage that leaves your skin feeling moisturized and protects with SPF 20.

Touchup Skin Concealer Pen :: The best concealer pen around. Great for under-eye circles and covering up breakouts and sun spots.

Color Pinch Cream Blush in Hibiscus :: Perfect for giving your cheeks that dewy sun-kissed glow.

Lengthening Mascara :: Sweat-proof mascara that lengthens and moisturizes your lashes throughout the day? Yes and yes.

Mattify Skin Finishing Powder :: A translucent powder that helps absorb shine and works great for mid-day touchups.

Lip Sheer in Twig :: I have never loved lip color until I discovered Lip Sheers. They’re not ultra-pigmented, which I find more flattering and easy to wear.

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