Top Nine (Blog Style) 2015

Dec 31, 2015

So lets just rip off instagram completely shall we? Looking back at this year, it went by all too fast! I cannot believe how much has changed, and how much is about to change. But lets look back on what the nine most popular posts on the blog were this year.
Odette's birth story was high on the list of views this year, and I mean why not? That was the biggest and best thing that happened to this family all year! It really does seem like she was born yesterday, or that we can't remember life without her. She fits in so perfectly with this crew! 2015 I love you for that. 
Parenting in the first trimester, also a huge hit on the blog. This too I can remember like it was yesterday, Chris in Japan, me with these poor little kids who watched their mom curl into a ball on the couch and just wait out the all day sickness. We survived....
First comes love, then comes baby, then comes postpartum anxiety! I've had it, and I lived to tell the tale. I was so happy to see the response on this post. Moms who also thought it was not normal, completely scary, and suffered in silence because it wasn't in the what to expect books....
Going from one to four. I always love looking back on posts. What I thought in that moment, how I felt, what I thought was hard, or still is. Going from one to two to three to four makes me kind of wish I started this blog when Ace was born. Now that would have been a shit show. Four seemed to be a thousand times easier!
Post baby pampering! Another great post for moms. I remember the days of being consumed with guilt when I would leave me babies for even a minute. Now, four kids deep I realize that I need to take time for myself in order to be a good mom for them. It doesn't have to be a lavish spa day (even though I recommend it) just an hour or two to yourself can do wonders. It took me almost six years to be okay with that. 2015 I definitely learned to let go....just a little. 
From parenting to makeup....2015 was also a fun year for this little blog. I partnered with some of my favorite brands, one of them being Butter London. Makeup posts are some of my favorites, not only because I am constantly playing in my own bathroom, but I like to share the goods. I also love hearing what products you guys find amazing, and love the feedback. 
Life in Alaska has always been a central theme of this space. After all, if we hadnt moved here I may not have started this blog at all. It started out as a way to stay connected with family. An outlet for my at times very lonely stay at home mom gig. In the beginning I had a hate hate relationship with Alaska. Chris was always gone, I was pregnant in the winter trying to shovel feet of snow out of my driveway in order to just go pick up diapers. All things that I was not used to. But I got out of that rut and started to love this place. We created so many memories, had two babies up here, and will undoubtedly miss this place! 
Another first in 2015 was camping.....with four children. Interesting to say the least. Stupid at times even. Not sure when the sting will wear off and we will do it again. Maybe when all the children can set up their own tents? Who knows, but it is funny to relive. We can now, and only now, look back and laugh. Ha!
Military ball! This years, and the last were big search topics on the blog. It is basically the one and only time Chris and I get some alone time. We aren't complaining. It is nice to get all fancy, stay in a hotel, and eat at places that we can't bring our brood. But we are always so anxious to get home. 

That's it!


I liked you. 

new year in velvet

Dec 30, 2015

 Velvet Free People Dress
Winter Streetstyle
Black Velvet Free People Dress
Free People Dresses
Michael Kors Wedge Bootie
Winter Outfit Inspiration- Free People
dress: free people c/o shopbop // tights: shopbop 
shoes: michael kors (on major sale right now) // lipstick: urban decay in naked 2

Oh how ringing in the new year has changed. I remember the days of living in Las Vegas and a bunch of friends getting hotel rooms to stay down on the strip to see the fireworks, and get ungodly unruly until the wee hours of the morning in where we would then grab breakfast and probably have to muster up the strength to then go to work. Thinking about that now just makes my body ache! New Years now involves take-out, probably letting the kids stay up a little later to watch a movie, and maybe...just maybe...Chris and I making it to midnight. But that is not a requirement. 

Honestly, it is a much better time. I had Ace at 22, so the days of partying prior were short, involved fake ID's, and a whole lot of bad ideas. Now the Disney movie just sounds amazing, with a pizza? Oh man, don't tempt me with a good time! 

This dress would actually be perfect for a night out. I wore it to a Christmas party, and am totally in love with it. Velvet and lace with a touch of leather? AND! All my cold weather living ladies, get yourself these tights! They are fleece lined and warm and ridiculously amazing! If you are currently gestating, they make a pair for you too! Just keeping everyone warm one leg at a time! 

What are your plans for New Year's? 

What to do with your Christmas tree after Christmas? Turn it into potpourri!

Dec 29, 2015

Even though I have taken down the decorations, and the tree has been removed from the living room, I still want that fresh scent throughout my house. I mean who doesn't? So why not keep the memory of your Christmas tree alive through a little potpourri? This is seriously the easiest thing and your nostrils will thank me! 
Christmas Tree Potpourri
You probably have all these things in your kitchen already from all your holiday cooking. And if you happen to have a tree of the not real variety, then dumpster diving is in your future! Or maybe your neighbor has a few branches they could spare. Trust me, it is worth asking. 

But, for recipe sakes you are going to want:

-tree branches, or stems 
-an apple or two
-half a lemon, you could use more but I used the other half in my water.
-cinnamon sticks
-palm full of cloves
Stovetop Potpourri
Throw all the ingredients in a stock pot, and cover with water. Set it on your back burner where it is out of the way and can just fumigate your house with its lovely aroma! 

I usually start my heat on a little higher just to get it going, then when it is almost at a boil I back it down to low. Set it and forget it. Well, don't forget it completely, no one needs a house fire. But you can just leave it simmering on your stove all day. 
DIY Potpourri
Actually, I have gotten this to last up to three days. By then the scent has pretty much been drained out of the pines. But for those couple days your house will smell amazing!! 

Have you ever done this? Are you a fan of stovetop potpourri? 

not your mama's tweed

Dec 28, 2015

J Crew Tweed Blazer
J Crew Tweed Blazer
Streetstyle Outfits
Stuart Weitzman Suede Boots
Mom Style
tweed blazer: j crew via second run consignment (local boutique, similar here and here)
tee: vince // jeans: j crew// boots: stuart weitzman // sunglasses: vintage gucci

Vacation Monday looks a whole lot better than a regular Monday, considering I thought yesterday was Monday and Chris corrected me just a few times. I love vacation mode! I am loving it even more now that my house has been somewhat put back together. I love all the Christmas spirit and all, but I can't live in too much clutter. Even though I feel like my house is in a constant state of kid clutter, with the tree and the stockings and the everything, I needed a little sense of normalcy back. How about you? No? I am sure you all are much more jolly than I am. Ha! 

Anyway, lets talk about this outfit that I am lo-v-ing! Totally mom friendly in my opinion. I am a lover of the tweed variety, so when I found this J Crew tweed blazer at one of my favorite local spots, I held on for dear life and immediately took it to the register. J Crew tweed blazers are a major investment piece, and a must have in my closet. Tweed is timeless as long as you are willing to remix it. Don't think your grandmothers tweed here. I decided to pair it with these over the knee boots to give it an updated look. Still polished and chic. And these boots! I wanted a suede over the knee boot, but Alaska doesn't want me to wear a heel all too often. As much as I wanted the heeled version, I knew that I would be wasting my money in this stage of life. These have a rubber sole and grip the ground well. Winner! 

Running errands can be a stylish task sometimes! 

the aftermath

Dec 27, 2015

The carnage, the slaughter, the butchery! Have you ever heard Christmas described in such terms? Then you have never been to Christmas at my house. The boys woke up at a conservative four am whispering and shuffling their feet. Me in my exhausted state of, I just went to bed an hour ago, ran out after them to redirect their sleep walking back to their beds until a more reasonable hour of, mom got an hour or two of sleep so we can all be happy. They protested with all their might about how Santa came, and they saw toys, and mom didn't care. Killer of joy I am.... 

But they granted my wish of two hours of sleep and began their toy crusade at six thirty. The boys were ready to get the party started, but the girls on the other hand wanted more sleep. One thing everyone knows in this house is, do not wake Avalon from her slumber. If homegirl is let her sleep. Well, they woke her up and she turned into the ghost of angry toddler Christmas past. It didn't matter that Santa brought her a big beautiful dollhouse, or that there was a pretty pink scooter thing to ride on, all that mattered was that she was woken up. So that was fun. The boys ripped into any and every paper wrapped box, it didn't matter who's name was on it. The ooo's and the aaaa's were plentiful. The, "wow Santa is the best!" could be heard in China. I sat there and watched all my wrapping procrastination get torn to shreds and fed to a dog and a nine month old. 

I will admit that we are those parents that buy an embarrassing amount of wood and plastic toys, and then we spend the better part of the day making threats about taking those damn toys away if no one can seem to get along. Then we take them away, we watch a sugar induced meltdown happen, we eventually give in to letting them play with that toy again, lather...rinse...repeat! 

We eat all day as if we will never see another morsel of food in our lives again. We FaceTime family, we sing Christmas songs loudly even though we are tone deaf. Chris and I at some point get into a sarcastic filled argument about who's idea it was to buy (insert toy here) to which the kids cannot stop fighting over. 

Basically the picture I am trying to paint is, a good time was had by all. Christmas 2015 you were a good one. And now I shall shower you with pictures!

I stayed in my pajamas in the kitchen most of the day....

I hope you all are recovering well!

Merry Christmas To All

Dec 24, 2015

Merry Christmas Eve! It's almost show time! We are less than prepared for the work load that lies ahead, but I have every battery size known to man so I got that going for me. The kids have been on quite the sleeping in streak this week, so I am hoping that continues to give myself and Mr. Claus a little shut eye. And to let the tape dry on the presents. I swear, one day I'm going to get my life together and have the presents wrapped and under the tree more than three hours prior to the main event. Or I'll drop them off some where for some complimentary wrapping! 

In any event, I hope you all have an amazing Christmas surrounded by loved ones, good food, and more importantly good wine! 

I leave you with a more accurate picture of our family. 

And to all a good night!

Holiday Makeup Looks

Dec 21, 2015

I always get excited for Holiday parties because that means I get one more excuse to play with makeup. So today I wanted to show you two makeup looks that I will be sportin to a party or two. I know it seems crazy to have a makeup look all picked out, but for me it is a time saver if I already know what works. It all goes hand in hand, the outfit, the hair, and the makeup. No need to hide from the cameras when they get pulled out. 

There are two looks I am going with this year. A sleek gold and red look, and a more subtle eye look with a bold lip. Both are super easy, and will no doubt have you looking good come party time!
Holiday Makeup
Holiday Inspired Makeup

For this look I started with my hair first. Just take a comb and zig-zag part your hair. Starting at the front just drag your comb back and forth through your hair creating that zig-zag look. Then pull it all back and secure in a tight pony tail. Use a few bobby pins too, to keep it really tight! Then spray the hell out of that hair!

Moving along to the makeup, I started with a full coverage foundation, I used Estee Lauders Double Wear. Applied with a beauty blender

Next, I contoured the sides of my nose with a NYX conturing stick, and blended it out with my beauty blender. Then started to highlight with Estee Lauder concealer. Making a line down my nose and a heavy highlight under my eyes. Then blend it out. 

Added some color to my cheeks using Neutrogena Healthy Skin Blends in Sunkissed. I also added a little extra glow to the tops of my cheek bones using Benefit High beam.  

On to the eye, I used Butter London's Eye Shadow Palette in Natural Charm. I stuck to the gold colors in the palette, Beige Sheen and Coral Sheen. I also took the Coral Sheen and added it under my lower lashes for a smokey look. Topped it off with the new Marc Jacobs O! Mega LashMascara (new love!) on my top and bottom lashes.

The lips seal the deal for this look. I used Bite Beauty's Fraise red lip crayon, and these crayons are my new favorites. They glide on so easily, and the colors are amazing.

That is it for this sleek look!

Moving on to a little less eye, and a whole lotta lip!
Holiday Makeup Lipstick NARS Liv
For this look I wanted to just play up my lips and keep it real simple on the eyes. So I started with my same face routine as above. Foundation, contour, and highlight. Then I used MAC's Mineralized Blush in Skinfinish. 

For my eyes, I used the same Marc Jacobs mascara, and just did a simple quick eyeliner smudged into my lash line, using MAC's Rebeleyes Technakohl Liner.  Then to really make my eyes look bigger and more awake, I used a nude liner by NYX. People always think that to make your eyes really pop you need black liner. It is the opposite, if you want to make them look bigger you want to neutralize your lash line. So by using a nude or white liner in your waterline you are making them appear bigger. Just add mascara to your bottom lashes to make your eyes really stand out!

I wanted a to go for a vampy look, so I pulled out my favorite deep plum lipstick. NARS in the color Liv. I know dark lips can be kind of intimidating, but by keeping everything else simple and clean you really only need to focus on the lips.

Done and done!

Do you have a go-to holiday look?

layers for days

Stein Grey Overcoat
How to wear layers in winter
Cute Mom Style Outfits
Grey coat and pants outfit
Cute Winter Outfits
Monochromatic Layers
Winter Streetstyle
Cute Outfit Inspiration
grey overcoat: shein c/o // denim jacket: zara (similar style) // turtleneck: nordstrom
pants: nordstrom // shoes: zara (old, love these) // sunglasses: quay // lipstick: nars liv

Hey Monday! The last Monday before Christmas! We are in the homestretch people. Who is ready? Not I! I mean, I think I have all the components to pull off Christmas, but nothing is put together. And I would be joking if I told you that I don't thrive under pressure. So Chris and I will very much be wrapping and assembling until the wee hours of the morning on Thursday night. But hey....we can just call that quality time right? Nothing screams I love you like fighting over who's idea it was to buy so many damn toys that need to be put together with all of their small parts and screws. True love man....

Anyway, this weekend was filled with Chris trying to convince me that my childhood was a fail because I have never seen a Star Wars film. So he ran out and bought them all on DVD, and I gave him strict instructions to bring home wine too. And that is kind of how it went, watch a movie....drink some wine. Not that I really paid attention because Odette walking, and Caspian thinking she is a teething toy doesn't leave much attention for movie details. The kids loved them, so much so that Chris ran back out and bought them lightsabers. Please don't try and tell him that Christmas is only a few days away and that they need no toys in the meantime. I clearly lost that argument. Dad is in fun dad vacation mode, which means bedtime is gone. The noise level is close to shattering my wine glasses, and the kids are loving it! 

I am loving this outfit! Grey will always be one of my favorite colors to mix and match. And I traded in my distressed jeans for a pair of speckled trousers. I wore this to a Christmas party that was more like a get in, say hello, drop off some food and a gift, kids decide this is boring, go home. Can't say I was too disappointed. I much prefer my children to be crazy in my own house. Less things to break. You know, that aren't already broken. 

I hope you all had a great weekend!! 

geometric fringe

Dec 18, 2015

Forever 21 Fringe Cardigan
Forever 21 Sweaters
Cute Winter Outfits
Winter Outfits with Forever 21
Winter Outfits
fringe cardigan: forever 21 (love this one and this one) // turtleneck: forever 21// 
leather leggings: nordstrom // shoes: topshop // sunglasses: ray-ban // lipstick: bite beauty 

Vacation mode starts now! Chris is off, Ace stayed home from school because I's just a party today and he was like....nope I'd rather sleep in. I am so freaking excited not to load four kids up and drive to school twice a day for a couple weeks!!! The joys in being a personal taxi...slim at times...but joyous nonetheless! 

Anyway, this is my last winter inspired outfit with Forever 21 this week, and this fringe oversized cardigan is my new favorite. I mean the print and fringe is a given, but the fact that I can throw it on over anything, or just lounge around the house and feel fab is the best! I will say that Caspian finds it to be a lot more interesting than I care for, but the dog has good taste, clearly. Pieces like these are some of my favorites to have in my closet because they can dress up all your basics. Another basic I consider to be necessary are leather leggings. I am not so much one to run around and say "leggings are pants" I mean...leggings are leggings. But, leather leggings just add a bit more luxe to an outfit. Paired under a long sweater, or tunic and finished with a standout flat...that is more my speed. 

And with that, I am probably off to Target for the fourth time this week. Except this time I am going armed with a list and no children to distract me, because we need too many different kinds of batteries for me to screw this up!

Happy Friday party people!!

Thanks to Forever 21 for sponsoring this post. 


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