Reason #245 Why Having A Baby Girl Rocks

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Confession: I am obsessed with buying baby clothes. I can’t stop. And this is insanity because I’m not a shopper. Not for myself or for anyone else. I cringe at the thought of going to a mall or outlet. But shopping for a baby girl? It’s like a different kind of experience. Everything looks better in itty bitty sizes. Elle has received soooo many clothes from friends and family members so I really shouldn’t be buying anything. But I can’t help myself. Between consignment stores and strollin’ sites like Alex and Alexa, I just can’t stop drooling over baby clothes.

And designer baby clothes? ZOMGGGG! My bank account isn’t stacked enough to be droppin’ pennies on Roberto Cavalli dresses, but hey looking at these pretty dresses is free. Seriously.

Brace yourself for the cuteness…

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This Torres Candy Stripe Prom Dress ($131.50) would be adorableeeee on Baby Elle. And I know I’m supposed to be anti-pink but I can’t take this cuteness. Can’t take it.

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I’ve dubbed Elle Belle as a baby hippie and so this Catimini Floral Print Romper Dress ($75.50) is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. Steep in price, yes? But precious and darling for Spring? Oooooh yes.

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But how cute is this Monnalisa Pink Panther onesie ($22.48)? I didn’t even know the Pink Panther was such a cute little kitty. Ha!

Fellow mommies, grandmas, aunts and godmamas, are you too a wee bit addicted to buying baby clothes? Oh! And to my gals with baby boys, admit it – baby boy stuff just isn’t nearly as cute, uh? ūüėé

 

*This is a sponsored post. All thoughts are my own but I was paid to place a link in this blog post.

(photo source)

Weight Watchers, here I come!

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Guess who joined Weight Watchers?! Meeee! And the cool thing is, I’ll be blogging about my experience the entire time. I actually started last week but that was more of a dry run. It was hard, y’all. I’ve been on many weight loss challenges before and this is proving to be the most difficult because I am a breastfeeding mother. I express on average 60-70 oz of breast milk (through a breast pump) a day and aside from it being draining, it makes me incredibly ravenous. Breastfeeding burns a ton of calories and in return, moms HAVE to steadily nourish themselves. Weight Watchers is the only weight loss program that I’ve ever heard of that actually has a track for nursing moms.

I actually gained a pound from last week. Opps! I’m not worried. There will be up’s and down’s and I’m ready for ’em. I will even unveil my current size and where I’m looking to go.

So I’m 213 lbs. This is NOT baby weight as I was actually 216 before I gave birth to Elle. I only gained 9 lbs during my pregnancy and quickly lost it all. I am not embarrassed at being 5’6 and 213. Is it an ideal weight? No. But is it fixable? Absolutely. I am human and of course I have insecurities but I have always felt that I looked like I weigh less than I do. I toggle between a size 12/14 but I just happen to have a solid build. I will never be a small girl because I’m an amazon woman. I’ve got big thighs and legs and so when it comes to loosing weight, I like to set realistic goals for myself. I recently had a physical at my midwife’s office and my BP and cholestrol numbers are in healthy ranges, so really it’s just my weight that’s an issue. I have no intentions of being a size 2 and I don’t think my body would let me be a size 2 anyway. ¬†But weighing less would put me in healthier ranges and in a happier disposition so I’m all for it!

This will be the biggest weight loss challenge yet. Trying to find the time to workout, battling the cravings and trying to stay satiated through breastfeeding will be tough but I can do it! I will also be giving you the ins and outs of the very cool Weight Watchers online program. Stay tuned for next week’s update!

Got any healthy snack or workout tips for me? Moms who have breastfed and tried to loose weight, I would love some advice from you!

 

*I have received a free 3-month pass to experience Weight Watchers online. I am not being paid to use or endorse Weight Watchers and thoughts are my own. People following the Weight Watchers plan can expect to lose 1-2 pounds per week.

Cult Nails 2-Year Anniversary Special Release

How is Cult Nails already 2 years old? I felt like I JUST met Maria yesterday and was talking to her about her “baby” of a nail polish brand. I mean, Cult Nails never felt like just indie nail polish brand. Maria handled business ¬†like a champ and to me the brand felt high-end and professional right out of the box. I couldn’t be more proud of her and the Cult Nails team.

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To celebrate their 2 year anniversary Cult Nails released a special collection of 3 darling polishes. I was shocked that I remembered to pre-order them in enough time. Yaaaay!

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Tempest is a pure white, high gloss. Maria tried her hardest to do a 1-coat white nail polish and I think she nailed it. THis is ONE coat of this baby and I’ve got a nice opaque finish. You’ll likely want to apply a second coat for good measure but um, wow…when have you ever seen a 1-coat white that wasn’t insanely streaky?

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Fetish is a wax look finish black polish. Basically it’s a matte polish. And I love it. It was so unexpected. Usually you see matte polishes when the rest of the world has considered them to be a “trend”. The formula for this one is a bit more on the plastic-y side of mattes. It is soft but isn’t completely shine-free. I used 2 coats for this one.

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Blaze is a perfect blend of glowing gold and copper glitter. It’s a nice opaque glitter. I’m not sure I’m in love with it completely because it looks a bit strange on my complexion but it certainly is a pretty polish to look at. I used 2 coats for this one too.

Price: $12/piece
Availability: You can scoop them up from CultNails.com.
Limited Edition?: No.
Do I recommend ’em?: Well, yeah. You’ll never see me NOT recommend a Cult Nails polish though. I’m just that obsessed with the brand.

I am slowly building my collection of CN polishes…

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Yep!

Whatcha think? Find anything special about those 3 polishes? And dude, give me a round of applause. I managed to find enough time to polish my nails. That’s something I haven’t doen in over 6 weeks (pre-Baby Clumps days). Whooooa! ūüėé

Milani Color Statement Lipsticks in Oranges and Reds

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Giiiiiirl, Milani has some new lipsticks and I am swooning! Their lippies have gone through quite the makeover. From the packaging to the formula, everything about these new lipsticks is spectacular. I’m going to be reviewing all of the color families but first up are the ever so sexy oranges and reds…

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Best Red is a true red matte and although that’s Milani’s description, it didn’t appear to be TOO matte for me. I’m not complaining though. It’s stunning and is definitely one of my favorites in the bunch.

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Cherry Crave is a red pearl metallic that has a gorgeous amount of shimmer. It definitely has the most shimmer than any of the other lipsticks.

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High Voltage is a red orange vinyl and colors like these don’t compliment me best but it’s pretty nonetheless.

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Orange Gina is an orange bronze-y pearl. The finish is frosty and I’m not a fan but the shade is a bit off-putting on me too.

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Red Label is a bright red cream is a fantastic red. It is my absolute favorite because it’s blue-toned and just woooonderful. I also found it to be the most moisturizing.

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Ruby Valentine is a deeper red vinyl. It’s my second favorite red in this collection

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Sweet Nectar is an orange cream and I wish this orange loved me as much as I love it. But naw. It’s just not that flattering on my skin. But whatever. I’m going to rock it anyway with a lipliner. Watch!

I’m sure some of the reds look similar but nope, they are all very different be it the finish, addition of subtle shimmer or blue or orange tuned hinges.

 

The Beauty Basics

Price: $5.49/ea
Availability: Walgreens, CVS, Rite-Aid, Target, Walmart, etc.
Favorites in collection: Cherry Crave, Ruby Valentine and Red Vinyl 
 

Yes Milani. Yes! I love everything about these lipsticks. Of course I didn’t expect every shade to look phenomenal on me but I was impressed with the finishes and longevity of the lippies. Of course the price point is fantastic too. Stay tuned for more features of Milani’s Color Statement Lipsticks.

6 Reasons Why Laura Mercier and Lancome Rock

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Yassss – two of my favorite higher-end brands. I love me some Laura Mercier and Lancome. LOVE. Lancome comes out with some of the best mascaras and Laura Mercier’s foundation, tinted moisturizer and lippies are just…golden. Neither brand can do any wrong in my book. A gal pal of me texted me the other day trying to get some product ideas. She’s interested in dabbling into higher-end cosmetics but didn’t know where to start. And soooo I’m making this list for her. Yep, there are benefits to having a beauty blogger for a friend.

  • ¬†Laura Mercier has brown-girl friendly foundations. And they rock! FACT: It is crazy hard finding higher-end cosmetic brands that have a ton of different shades. Laura Mercier have plenty and I’ve found that the ones that I’ve tried have matched me perfectly.
  • Lancome makes the best mascaras. Trust me on this, y’all. As someone who has tried almost 200 mascaras, I know who has the best. And it’s Lancome. If you’re going to spend more than $20 on a mascara, you want it to work. And if you’re using one from Lancome, you can guarantee that it’s going to give you amaziiiiing lashes.
  • Laura Mercier launches spectacular seasonal collections. Lots of brands come out with collections that have products that are pretty but aren’t practical. They’ll launch palettes that look good but chances are you won’t use it. Not Laura Mercier. Their seasonal goodies are always something you can use over and over again.
  • Lancome’s Bi-Facil Eye Makeup Remover is the BEST. I dare you to find a better eye makeup remover. I’ve tried several but still keep coming back to the old faithful that is Bi-Facil.
  • Laura Mercier has a tinted moisturizer that will make you swoon. It’s hard to find a good tinted moisturizer that won’t make you greasy but will also take care of those of us who have super dry skin. Laura Mercier’s rocks!
  • Lancome knows what they’re doing in the anti-aging department. I haven’t been that strict with my anti-aging regimen just yet but when I’m ready, I’m totally going to Lancome. They have so many products that can tackle those wrinkles before they even pop up.

Any Lancome or Laura Mercier lovers in the house? What are some of your favorite products by them?

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post but all opinions are my own.

China Glaze Avant Garden Collection for Spring 2013 – part I

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Spring has sprung, darlings! And China Glaze has me all in the spirit with their beautiful Avant Garden collection. China Glaze does Spring collections beautifully so I expected great things from this one. And the good news is – they didn’t disappoint. I received this collection to review so check out part I of the Avant Garden collection.

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Pink-ie Promise is an iridescent baby pink and she’s got a cute name, but there really isn’t anything too spectacular about this pink.

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Keep Calm, Paint On is a sea foam green. I can’t get enough of this shade. China Glaze has given us beautifully sea foam greens before but this one is some kind of special. And the name is awesome too.

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Dandy Lyin’ Around is a shimmery vanilla icing and ZOMG, I love this one. It’s a simple color really but these are the kind of shades I go for when I want a lil’ somethin’ that’s not too over the top. You’ll need a good 3 coats for this one.

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Tart-y for the Party is a lavender creme with a nice and smooth finish. Nothing fancy.

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Life Is Rosy is a blushed mauve and as Grandmotherly as this polish is, I absolutely adore it. Seriously. It’s one of my favorites in this bunch.

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Fade Into Hue is a periwinkle creme that applied beautifully.

 

The Beauty Basics

Price: $7/bottle but you can find them cheaper on e-tailers.
Availability: Ulta, Sally Beauty Supply
Limited Edition?: No
Favorites in collection: Keep Calm, Paint On and Life Is Rosy
 

Not a bad Spring collection so far, uh? Stay tuned for part II!

Beauty in Mommyhood ‚Äď Elle Is 2 Months Old!

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Okay, it’s official. My child is growing up. Yes, it’s great that she’s growing and thriving but I really enjoy her sweet cuddly newborn-y self. Elle G. is a really good baby. She doesn’t cry too much; mostly when we have stupidly missed her hunger and tired cues. But other than that, she does a great job at not driving us nuts with constant crying.

And when she does cry and I can’t figure out why I’m all like, “Elle, you’re being such a crybaby.” And she gives me this look like, “Ma, do you want to make it better or shall I turn it up a notch?”

I’m starting to spot her little personality. She’s hilarious and has a wacky sense of humor just like me! She does this new thing where she’ll open her mouth to receive the pacifier and then spit it right out. And then she’ll whine just for you to put the paci in her mouth to start the cycle all over again. It cracks me up. She’s also starting to ¬†babble. We are chit-chatting allll the time.

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She’s a smiley baby too. Sing a song or talk in a high-pitched voice and Elle Belle will smile at you. It’s the sweetest little smile. She’s still sleeping through the night and only wakes up once or twice to get a bottle. And then she’s out again.

Honestly, I can’t complain about much because Elle is such a good baby. She only has few meltdowns and that’s when I’ve eaten things that haven’t agreed with her. Which includes the following: dairy, curry, spicy food, sweet potatoes and beans.

Many of you have asked how breastfeeding is going and um, yeah no. I am an exclusive pumper – this means that I am a mother who only expresses breast milk for her baby. Elle will nurse a bit using a nipple shield but quite frankly, the pain I get from that (think cracked nips) and confusion in trying to figure how much she’s getting is just not worth it. She’s latched a few times but usually ends up screaming minutes later. I have no idea why.

So yes. I spend approximately 19 hours a week total and pump about 250 oz worth of breast milk. Since she’s been born, I’ve expressed over 21 gallons of breast milk. Insane? Yes. Remind me to write a post about the up’s and down’s of being an exclusive pumper. I would have loved to nurse her directly but hey, I’m doing the best I can. I have small goals for when I will continue to pump. I want to last for at least 3 months, and then 6 months and then 9 months and then a year. Truthfully, I’ll throw myself a party if I can last 6 months. I will buy myself a diamond tennis bracelet if I can last a year. Pumping is the most difficult thing I have ever done in my life. Ever. Childbirth is 10x easier. Yuuuup.

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That’s Elle hangin’ with her Gam. Yes, Grandma Clumps’ name is Gammy. Hilarious, uh?

How am I two months postpartum? Starving! All I want to do is eat. And I do. I have recently joined Weight Watchers and I’m becoming more active with taking walks with Elle. My goal is to loose a good 10 lbs in the next few months. I’m pretty sure it’s feasible but when I tell y’all I am hungry, I mean starving…allllll the time.

I am becoming so much more confident in motherhood. I can leave the house with her and not be so…afraid. It’s tough living in a city without many family members to help with a newborn. I feel like it’s just Esposo and me most times and when he’s working around the clock, well, it’s just me. And taking care of a newborn plus a blog is anything but easy. But…I’ve been doing it. So yeah, Elle isn’t the only one growing and I’m really happy about that. ūüėé

We’re in the process of finding a nanny or home daycare for Elle and I can’t stop crying over it. I can’t work from home, I can’t quit my job and how I’ll put her in someone else’s care at such a young age is beyond me. But I have to do it. It’s just soooooo hard. Any tips, working moms?

Elle Stats:

Weight – 10 lbs
Biggest Accomplishment РDiscovering that chocolate gives Elle insane gas. Prior to this, we would endure a few nights of insane crying and tummy troubles. We tried different bottles but nope, I was the problem.
Favorite Toy –¬†Elle got a swing that she adores. We love it too as it is great at getting her to sleep.
Biggest Hurdle –¬†Elle and I were sick with a cold for like a week and it was baaaad. But we got over it.

 

Too Faced Sweethearts Perfect Flush Blush

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This review would have been appropriate for Valentine’s Day but um yeahhhh, I totally forgot to put it up. Worry not. This darling little blush is still available on TooFaced.com. TF ruuuules in the packaging department. 9 times out of 10, my attraction to the brand starts at just a simple glare of their beauty baubles. Like this Sweethearts Perfect Flush Blush. I recently received her for review.

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Presh, isn’t she? And she sits nicely in the balm of my hand…

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It’s been awhile since a blush has wooed me. And this is sad because I adooooore blushes.

What Too Faced says about this baby,

“Three swatches of rose, coral and peach packed into one pretty heart. Baked color formula allows the blush to be applied as a beautiful buildable finish. Blush works on all skin tones.” (source)

Oh. And if you’re an ingredient snob, it’s paraben-free too. I’m a bit of a rule breaker when it comes to products like these. You can probably get away with applying this blush as 3 separate shades but naw…I swirl them altogether and pop it right on the cheekies. Yeah.

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Frostier than I’d like, this is the kind of blush that works best with a highlighter. ¬†I can probably get away with wearing the shade with the most pink in it best, but I find that they do better when used altogether. Plus, it’s just easier to apply that way? I mean, who has time to¬†strategically¬†apply only 1 or 2 of these shades? Yeah no. Keepin’ it simple is the way, yo.

Worn alone (meaning without foundation, tinted moisturizer or some kind of base) means she won’t last long so I definitely like to wear this on top of a lil somethin ‘somethin’. See…

Very subtle but it still gives my cheeks a nice dose of color in a pinch.

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Love love love.

Where To Buy: TooFaced.com
Cost: $29

Price is a wee up there but she’s a speciality item so I get it. And she’s adorbs. Whatcha think? Are you in love?