Thursday, September 13, 2018

What I’m Loving Lately 121

Hi, friends!

I’m still in sunny Santa Barbara, but I’m heading home soon. It was quite the whirlwind week, and I’m excited to be home with my boys this weekend. We’re planning to go apple picking and have a low-key weekend. I’m very much looking forward to it! I can’t wait to share more details from my travel with you, but, for now, I have a fun list of what I’m loving lately!

Asymmetrical Snap-Up Fleece – How adorable is this fleece? I’m in love. It also comes in 5 other colors and is priced right at just $68. I might just need it in my life! Another fleece favorite is The North Face Mountain Snap Sweatshirt, which is more expensive, but definitely worth the money. My apparel from The North Face has lasted forever and still looks brand new.

product image

Stride Rite Made2Play Taylor Sneaker – We’ve always been a fan of Stride Rite – in fact, ALL of Quinn’s sneakers are from there. But we always used to buy the same pair of Saucony’s until we recently discovered the Stride Rite brand shoes, which we are so impressed with. Sure, the Saucony’s are super cute, but the toe and sole start to fall apart and peel almost immediately. They’re sturdy shoes, but they just look beat up within a couple weeks of wearing them. The Stride Rite Taylor Sneakers (pictured below) are awesome. They are much more high-quality and can really take a beating. Quinn has worn his new pair for a few weeks now, but they still look brand new. We are definitely new fans of Stride Rite brand shoes and plan to buy them in the future!

Magic for Humans – If you need a little nighttime entertainment, this show has had Mal and I cracking up! It sounds silly (which it is!), but Magic for Humans is a lighthearted show where the host, Justin Willman, performs crazy magic tricks on the street incorporating real people into the fun. His comedic timing really makes it hilarious at times and it certainly is a fun way to end the evening.

Latest Videos

Do This Kind of Exercise If You Want to Live Longer, Study Says – This article was a really interesting read – it looked at the difference in overall health (and happiness) from those doing solo fitness compared to group activities.

Striped button-shoulder turtleneck – I love this top and wear it all the time. I originally bought it last spring, but it’s definitely a piece I plan to wear this fall and beyond! I also like the white and green option! 🙂

Kut from the Kloth Diana Skinny Jeans – One of my favorite pairs is on sale right now for just $59 – and there’s free shipping! 🙂

Diana Skinny Jeans, Main, color, MischievousWellness Mama Episode #183: Fluoride: The Hidden Cause of Acne (& What to Do About It) – The Wellness Mama podcast has been on my subscribe list for quite a while now. I love her family-focused health show, and I found this episode to be super interesting! This episode gets down and dirty into the controversial topic of fluoride in our water and how it relates to acne and other health issues. It definitely made me wonder if getting our Berkey Water Filter has helped my skin issues!

J Crew Merino Wool High-Low Cardigan Sweater – My idea of dressing up for an evening out usually means swapping out the athleisure sweatshirt for a casual cardigan. They’re so versatile to throw on with jeans, cute boots, and a fun scarf for an effortless look. This slouchy cardigan comes in 3 different colors and is currently on-sale at $37!

Mikhaila Peterson – I recently listened to Mikhaila on an episode of the Joe Rogan Podcast – and, my gosh, her story was so interesting. She’s a carnivore and ONLY eats meat. She shares how she cured herself of severe arthritis (she had multiple joints replaced at 17 years old), chronic fatigue, depression, and a plethora of other symptoms by changing how she ate. She definitely speaks her mind and has a unique perspective. I’ve actually heard more and more about the “carnivore diet” lately, which I find so fascinating. It’s clearly working for some people! I’m always researching ways that one can improve their health through diet and lifestyle, so Mikhaila’s experience is definitely interesting to consider!

Sam Edelman Maurine Bootie – These babies are 60% off at just $67! Now, that’s an awesome investment! These booties would go with just about everything! These JBU Parker Booties from just $44 from Zappos, and they received great reviews! I also kind of like these slouchy booties (just $49). I actually think I would wear them a lot. Hunter Boot fans: Their Original Tall Glossy Boots are on sale for $99!

Trillest podcast – I’m a semi-new fan, but it’s become one of my go-to podcasts nowadays. Taylor and Salah chat about all the things I love – health, fitness, CrossFit, running, mom life, and more! I recently had the opportunity to be a guest on the podcast, and we had such a fun time talking about my macro plans, fitness after a baby, hormones, and more!

Health Warrior Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Chia Bars – I’ve always been a fan of Health Warrior Bars and this new flavor is one of my favorites! At only 100 calories and 3g of sugar, it’s the perfect end of the evening dessert. The healthy fats from chia seeds and cashew butter are so satisfying too!

Vanilla Bean Collagen – I’ve received tons of questions about this collagen, so I just wanted to include it again in this blog post. I add it to my iced coffee every morning and even added it to hot coffee the other day – delicious!!

TOMS Deconstructed Alpargata Slip-On – Faded red TOMS for just $31? Yes, please! This pair is cute too!

Deconstructed Alpargata Slip-On, Main, color, Faded Rose Suede

Question of the Day

Have you gone apple picking yet this year? Local folks, where do you go?

We went to C.N. Smith Farm last year and really liked it!

from Carrots 'N' Cake

When Can Babies Eat Meat?

My Plans For Maternity Leave

Baby Mazen feet!

When Mazen was born I never took much of a break from blogging. I went from three posts a day to one and since I was writing mostly about life as a new mom, my content was easily generated and recapped. I was also writing both KERF and BERF along with a few ongoing freelance gigs. I’m glad I just have one blog to focus on this time! (Plus sharing on Instagram, obvi). While I don’t remember feeling too overwhelmed with my work time after Mazen was born, I do remember being so tired at the end of the day and feeling obligated to update the blog each evening. After a few months of that I switched over to mostly topic-based posts so that I could batch write during nap times and not have to work in the evenings so much. I wrote this post about work-life balance when Mazen was nearing a year old, and it’s interesting for me to go back and re-read now. (I also stole the same pics for this post!)

So what’s the plan when baby #2 comes?

From when the baby arrives to New Year’s Day, I’m planning to go into low-power mode. I recently started listening to Gretchen Rubin’s Happier podcast, and I enjoyed this episode describing low-power mode as a computer functioning on the bare minimum of resources. I don’t intend to disappear entirely for 10-ish weeks. I’m just going to publish posts maybe once or twice a week about what’s going on in our lives with a few sponsored and topical posts scattered in. I want there to be zero pressure on myself to sit down to my computer if I’m feeling overwhelmed, exhausted, etc. But I also know that over the course of a week I should have enough time to check in with you guys at least once with some pictures and updates.

What I don’t intend to do is pre-write 10 weeks worth of posts and/or have 10 weeks worth of guest posts. I don’t think that’s worth the effort. I think quality over quantity is my goal. The fear of any blogger taking a hiatus is that readers, income, and momentum will all disappear forever in a matter of days. While I am a little worried about that, I am fairly confident that most of you won’t forget about me 🙂


I really want to spend as much time with both of my children as possible. I remember from last time: the first six weeks are simply about survival! I do want to share a birth announcement and birth story as soon as I can. The blog might be quite baby heavy in the early days, but since it’s always been about my life, I’m sure that will come as no surprise.

I also am very grateful that we’re a two-income household and if my contribution shrinks for a while, we’ll be totally fine. I also ask for your grace that if my ratio of personal to sponsored posts seems a bit jarring that it’s for the livelihood of our family and not because I am lazy or shilling myself out. I always try to infuse as much personality into my sponsored posts as I can. I have a few posts already in the queue that I’ve worked on this summer and am really excited to share but they had to wait for the correct timeline!

I think the timing of a late October to New Year’s break works well since most blogs see a big traffic dip over the holidays anyways, and then come New Years, I’ll be about (hopefully) 2.5 months postpartum and (hopefully) feeling ready to get back into a healthy routine. I’ll be right in step with the New Years resolution crew! I really have no idea if by New Year’s I’ll be ready to get back into five posts a week, but that’s my hope and plan for now.

And long term?

I know from the past that I’ll get back into it when Baby B is taking longer naps, in preschool, and eventually in elementary school. I know I’ll get back to traveling and will eventually have the time to produce longer-form posts again, but I also know that it’s the family and real life posts that you guys love the most!

When Mazen was younger and taking super long afternoon naps, I was able to use the afternoon hours to work. But with two kids on different schedules, I might have to hire childcare a little more than I did with Mazen. I have always tried to use the least amount of paid help possible, which has been a good cost savings, buts at times has meant a distracted mom or higher stress. I’m not sure what my plan will be, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.

As I’m sure all of you would agree, family is the most important thing. They are only babies once! I hope to update the blog when I go into labor like I did last time instead of just disappearing, but if he comes fast, that might be the case. So if the blog goes dark sometime in the next 5ish weeks, check Instagram!


from Kath Eats Real Food

20 Clean Eating After School Snacks

These 20 clean eating after school snacks are healthier options for snack time!

I don’t know what it’s like in your house, but in mine, after school snacks are a must. After a long day of learning,… Read more →

from The Gracious Pantry