Friday Favorites: June 9

Friday Favorites: June 9

Friday Favorites is a series where we share small, seemingly mundane moments from the past week – little details, often overlooked, that comprise this thing we call life.

These days I feel like I’m all over the place – emotionally, physically, mentally; things feel extremely scattered, overwhelming and confusing – a mental state that is far from pleasant for a type-A personality like mine.

You’d think after a week-long beach vacation, I’d come back feeling rested and ready to take on these last few weeks of pregnancy with new vigor – but not so.

Speaking of vacations, a mere week has passed since our family getaway to Gulf Shores, but it honestly feels like a lifetime. Why does that always happen?

Unlike our babymoon to Hawaii, this getaway was completely phone-, Internet- and distraction-free. And to be quite frank, it was glorious.

I recently read an article about how the decision to capture our vacations – whether for social media or for our own memories – puts a lot of unnecessary pressure on ourselves – so much so, that we end up not enjoying the vacation.

I couldn’t agree more! Bloggers, especially, have a natural tendency to combine content creation with travel; it’s a welcome break for both ourselves and our readers from the regular topics we write about. And yet if I look back on all my travels, it’s always the trips where I force myself to stay off Instagram and leave the camera at home that are the most relaxing and memorable, even if you do spend the first few days with major FOMO.

What are your thoughts on the topic?

Changing gears, last weekend was my first-ever baby shower. The photo above is a little preview, but I can’t wait to share with you all the photos from the gorgeous event!

Speaking of baby, can you believe I have six weeks (or less!) before we meet our little one?! Where has the time gone? I feel a bit overwhelmed with just how much still needs to be done, but I’m told again and again that “as long as you’ve got some diapers (we do!) then you’re set to meet your bundle of joy.”

I hope that is true… Because at this point my to-do list is a mile long, and it just keeps growing. Stock up on frozen foods, schedule a maternity session, schedule a newborn session, update health insurance, install the car seat, confirm maternity leave, send thank you notes, wash all the baby clothes and bedding…. The list goes on and on and on.

We did make a little bit of progress by signing up for a birthing class and lactation course. Up to this point, I’ve purposefully tried to shield myself from any sort of educational or instructional books, videos, etc. on the topic of labor. I figure billions of women have done this before me; surely my body will know what to do.

But at the encouragement of some mama friends (and because I’m starting to doubt my approach), I finally caved in. Now, if only I could pack my hospital bag; I think I’d feel much more prepared afterwards, although you’re never truly prepared to birth a child into this world, are you?

What are some other things I should add to my to-do list before baby’s arrival? Is there anything absolutely vital that I’m forgetting?

This last trimester has been a bit challenging, to be quite frank. My belly has grown quite large very quickly, and the simplest tasks like walking are becoming a major pain. My feet swelled up and are constantly numb. I’m still working and won’t be going on maternity leave until I go into labor. Needless to say, I’ve reached the point where I’m miserable more often than not. Add to that my raging hormones (I literally want to cry 24/7), and I’m a total mess. It doesn’t help that people are constantly commenting on how humongous I look. Didn’t they read my warnings in “20 Things You Should Never Say to a Pregnant Woman?”

In more positive news…

Our deck and pergola are finally finished, and I can’t wait to share photos of the transformation with you! We styled the space for my baby shower, and I’ve been taking full advantage of it ever since. I shared a preview on Instagram, in case you missed it. We still have a few projects up our sleeve before it’s completely finished (likely not going to happen pre-baby, though). But for now I’m excited to spend late evenings (after the sun goes down) and weekend mornings (before the sun comes up) out there, enjoying the space as is.

Besides the deck reveal, other fun blog posts coming down the pipeline are:

  • Reviews of the Cybex Cloud Q infant car seat, the Zippy Light stroller from Inglesina, and Kenra Professional’s newest line of hairsprays
  • What to Add to Your Baby Registry
  • How to Redesign an Existing Floor Plan During a Remodel So It Works For You
  • How to Find the Perfect Vacation Rental Online
  • 7-Day Itinerary for Maui, Hawaii
  • The Complete Guide to Maui Road Trips: 3 Stunning Drives Across the Island
  • 13 Tips to Improve Your Travel and Vacation Photos
  • Our Best Renovation Decisions, Part II

Which of these topics are you most excited to read about?

Last but not least, let’s talk about home improvement real quick. Right now our focus is the exterior, hardscaping and landscaping.  We want to fully enjoy the outdoors this summer. Plus, we’re real tired of trekking across the mud pit that is our front yard every time it rains.

The rest of the house has been at a standstill:

  • We bought a mudroom closet organization system months ago and have yet to install it.
  • The guest bedroom is a total mess, with everything that used to be in the nursery now overtaking this room.
  • The master bathroom is still a work-in-progress; we need to install the backsplash behind the double vanity, the vintage claw foot tub that is still laying on its side and possibly shower doors (curtains are so icky!).
  • The master bedroom could also use some help by way of curtains, artwork and a new bedding set.

And that’s just the beginning! Check out the full list of remodeling & renovation projects we had planned for 2017.

I’m slowly (and sadly) realizing that most of these must be put on hold until after the baby arrives. I’m in no condition to be tackling anything labor-intensive. Vadim’s been having serious issues with his back, so he’s been trying to take things easy, too.

All that to say, it may be a while before you see another major room transformation like the nursery around here – and that makes me sad. All the more reason to look forward to our deck reveal!

Now, tell me all about your week! What are you doing, searching for, thinking about, planning, and obsessing over these days? Please share in the comments section, below.





  1. so agree about the travel + blogging content bit! It can definitely get stressful.. I do love photography though so for me the positives generally outweigh the negatives. But I 100% admit that it’s annoying for me (and for those around me who I force to take my outfit pics lol) to postpone holiday activities whilst I do blog work .

  2. I love taking pictures wherever I go, but sometimes I just want to forget about the camera and enjoy myself. So exciting you are about to meet your baby! Best of luck with everything <3

  3. I love Gulf Shores and was recently there for Hangout Fest. It’s so fun and such a beautiful beach town. I couldn’t agree more with what you mentioned about vacationing. I have become that friend that’s constantly like “can you take a picture of me?” Or I’ll be taking videos for a vlog and say “I promise I’m going to put my camera down once I capture this.” Social media and blogging have definitely changed the vacation game. I am bittersweet about it. In the moment, it’s a little annoying, but when I’m writing a post or putting together a video, I sometimes regret not capturing more.

  4. Only six weeks left!! Ah- so exciting! Wishing you a great rest of your pregnancy! So glad you were able to get away and enjoy vacation before baby is here.

  5. Your body WILL do what it needs to do with the delivery! However, with any medical intervention, it does complicate things so I suggest having the baby on the way there. Not really, but try to hold off going to the hospital for as long as possible. Mike wanted to take me on a hike as Ezra was pretty much ready to come, I refused, good thing because he would have delivered him. But he did manage to squeeze in a stop through Starbucks drive through before I really popped… men, they don’t get the labor thing, it’s ok – they’re not meant to. Only advice I would give is that your body can show signs of labor and actually labor for weeks before the time is really here. So even if it’s past due date, patience is the greatest challenge yet virtue in laboring and delivering the little miracle. I know you can do it! What a blessing she will be! Hard to take it all in with the first one as it’s really like a dream but record many memories because it will be pure treasure. Praying for you!

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