May 2016 | Dearest Lou

Mama and Son Style: Agnes & Dora

Mama's Curie Dress c/o Agnes & Dora
Z's Snakeskin Shibori Leggings (size up for a comfortable pants fit) c/o Agnes & Dora

I've blogged two days in a row! What an accomplishment. This last Sunday I hit my 23 week pregnancy mark. Baby #2 is about the size of an eggplant and roughly 1.1 lbs. Now that baby is bigger I can feel baby's movements more and more. Which reminds me, I totally spaced sharing our big gender reveal on here (see instagram announcement here). My sweet and talented friend Roxana took some darling photos for us earlier this month. I will be sharing those on here later this week so stay tuned (; Anyway, feeling his little movements throughout the day sure makes my mama heart so happy knowing he is in there and doing well. I notice him moving around even more when I'm interacting and playing with Zaden, it's seriously the sweetest. I can't wait for these two brothers to meet!

Agnes & Dora sent Z and I some great items to style earlier this month. Unfortunately there was a bit of a mix up on my dress size so I just barely got it exchanged this last week. There's no way I could fit into a size small with my growing body (; I absolutely love the print of this Curie Dress! It's perfect for all shapes and sizes and I love how it fits my pregnant body. Agnes & Dora also let me pick out a sweet pair of leggings for Zaden. I ordered a size up for a comfortable pants fit instead of a tight legging fit. I absolutely love how they fit him and that there's even a bit of extra room in the waist so they aren't so tight.

For these photos, I really wanted her to capture Z and I doing what we do best, playing. I love that these photos capture most of Zaden's favorite games at the moment.

Z's favorite games at age 3.5:

Hide and Seek
Pillow Fights
Play Fighting/Wrestling

His particular favorite at the moment is tag. I love it when he says, "Tag me mama, come taggggggg meeeee." It's seriously the cutest and a game we play several times a day. I absolutely love this age and love the playful/loving bond I share with Z. I can't wait to love and start making special memories with Baby #2 and watching these two brothers create a special brotherly bond.

Prioritizing Time + Spending Quality Time with Loved Ones

Daffodil Leather Tote c/o Day & Mood

Day & Mood sent me this lovely tote to style and it's the perfect everyday bag right now. I'm not in need of a full diaper bag these days but have a slightly larger bag for treats and little things Z and I need when going out and about is essential. I love all of the pockets and the pretty pastel pink color. This tote is also available in camel, black, and light blue so definitely check it out!

Earlier this month, I went on a business trip to Colorado with two of my very best girlfriends and we had many deep conversations. The kind of conversations that make you think about things you want to change/do better in life. After hours of chatting and having time away from my boys I realized something that has been causing a lot of unnecessary stress in my life is my lack of prioritizing my time/taking on too much. In my adult life, prioritizing my time has always been a struggle for me. I have made it a personal goal of mine to "get my life together" sort of speak and figure out how to balance my time. It's so hard balancing family vs work life and also leaving sometime to do something I enjoy for myself or others.

I'm happy to say that since coming home from my trip I have done much better at planning my days. I slowly need to work at getting better at blogging consistently and not setting unrealistic goals. My goal for this upcoming month is to blog 3 times a week. I also really want to get my photography blog up and running so I can start sharing all of my work that I've been dying to share on a platform other than Instagram.

Sometimes it's extremely hard to work from home. I have to get myself out of bed early or spend late nights working in order to be the best mama and wife I can possibly be. I never want my work to get in the way of being there for my children when they need me. I also think it's very important to date each member of your family. Daryl and I have been very good at this our throughout our marriage and as soon as Zaden came into the picture I have made it a goal and priority to date him too.

It's the little moments that really count sometimes and a date doesn't always have to be this elaborate planned out evening but just special time set aside. Zaden is more than happy to go out and get a yummy treat with me or go to the park and have me chase him around and play whatever game he wants.

Now that Baby #2 will be joining us early this fall I know now is the time to organize and get my schedule together since we will have another sweet little spirit joining our family ♥

PS: These photos were taken over a month ago, hence why I don't look very pregnant, haha.

Summer Ready with Persil ProClean

This post has been in partnership with August United and it's advertiser . All opinions are mine alone.

Summer is right around the corner and this summer will be a bittersweet one. It will be mine and Zaden's last summer before Baby #2 arrives early this fall. We are super excited to meet baby but I'm so worried about the transition. I've talked to many friends and family members and usually it's hardest on the kid (especially when going from no siblings to one).

I have planned all sorts of fun summer activities for Z and I to do this summer. Most of which include lots of exploring outdoors and yummy treats. Outdoor fun and food can take a toll on our wardrobes which is where Persil ProClean detergent comes into play! We have used this detergent for over two years and it always does the job. My laundry always smells super fresh after washing, removes all stains, and leaves my clothing nice and bright. No need to worry about dull clothing and tricky stains (;

Persil ProClean is now available at select Target stores nationwide and to everyone online, so be sure to snag yourself a bottle next time you are in need of more detergent!

Polka Dots + Alterre Shoes

Megan Dress from Karina Dress || Mist Grey Mule + Marilyn in Sunshine from Alterre Shoes

How cute is Z in that first photo hiding inside my dress? When we went out and took these photos there was a cool breeze and he came running and hid in my dress.

I know I sound like a broken record when I say I'm back to blogging for good so I'm not going to jinx myself or promise anything this time. Since it is wedding season my blogging and personal work has definitely been on the back burner for weeks. Editing and working on my wedding clients work has been top priority as far as my work life goes.

I have a few looks I shot a couple weeks back that I'm excited to share with you guys throughout this week.

Let's talk about this polka dot beauty from Karina Dresses. I absolutely love Karina Dresses since their clothing works even for us pregnant ladies. There's enough stretch in the fabric around the mid-section (especially in the fit + flare style like this Megan dress). I got my usual size (S/M) and it fits like a charm. I definitely think I will be able to wear it throughout my second trimester but will most likely not wear it throughout my third depending on how big I get. I don't want to cause unnecessary stretching since I really want to wear this postpartum.

Another reason why I chose this particular style of dress is because the surplice v neckline! Perfect for easy nursing access without having to undo my dress all together (;

Oh and have you guys heard of Alterre Shoes? Alterre Shoes is this amazing new company that allows you to mix and match your shoes. You start off with with a lift (base of the shoe) and then you can choose interchangeable looks (straps)! How cool is that? Whenever I go on vacation or shoot multiple blog looks in a day I hate packing a bunch of different shoes. Having multiple looks from Alterre can easily resolve that issue and help me de-clutter a bit. Just ask my husband.. I own WAY to many pairs of shoes (;

I chose the Mist Grey Mule base since I figured it would go with most of my wardrobe and would be a bit more unique that just plain black. I also wanted a base that I could wear all year round and not just in the summer. For my first look I chose the Marilyn in Sunshine! I absolutely love a fun pop of yellow and can see myself wearing this combo often.

I'll be sharing look #2 with Alterre Shoes Thursday so stay tuned for that!

This post has been in partnership with BrandBacker, all opinions expressed are my own. Alterre sent me a pair of shoes + straps for my review.

Mama and Z Style: Pink + Blue

Mama's wearing: White Plum Tunic || Old Navy Maternity Shorts
Z's wearing: Old Navy Top || Gap Distressed Denim || Salt Water Sandals

Although these photos were taken nearly a month ago I wanted to share a few of my favorites on the blog. I went location scouting for the mama and me mini sessions I held last month and my boys came with me. These photos were taken in the middle of the afternoon and not during the ideal golden hour light however, I absolutely love them.

White Plum sent me this gorgeous tunic to share on my instagram with a coupon code last month and it's easily one of my go-to pieces right now. It's super soft and perfect for spring! I have also been living in these maternity bermuda shorts from Old Navy! Old Navy has been my go-to store for all things maternity so far this pregnancy and these shorts don't disappoint (;