Star Maternity Dress

Star Maternity Dress





I've honestly tried to choose mostly practical pieces to add to my maternity wardrobe, so I didn't end up spending an arm and a leg on statement clothes I couldn't rewear and rewear over the course of my pregnancy. But, sometimes when a dress is on sale, and it's on your Christmas wishlist (long before you really even look pregnant), and your mother-in-law spoils you with basically an entire maternity wardrobe, including this gem of a dress, you know it's meant to be.



And then, when, at your baby shower, there are these balloons, you know what you need to do. Put on this dress, and have a photoshoot, all while fighting chilly, windy weather. Your husband may tell you there is no way any of the photos probably even turned out well because the wind was beyond insane, but you have this magical dress on your side, and its magic defies all practical odds. (To be fair, in 90% of shots, the balloons were slapping me in the face, being blown to the ground, or silhouetted, so  you can't even tell what they are.)



I went for a super '20s style look, complete with a turban headband, and round glasses. The dress really reminded me of those black and white starlets perched on a big moon prop with their bob haircuts and dark lipstick, and I just went with it.



In other news, we've reached the LESS THAN TWO WEEK MARK until our baby is due, which is insaaaaane! The due date has been on our calendar for months and months (nine in fact), and it's always seemed so far off in the distance. Now here it is barreling right at our faces! I'm doing lots of planning and preparation, but mostly I'm already getting so emotional thinking about seeing his face for the first time. However, if it's anything like our sonograms and when we heard the heartbeat, I'll go in thinking I'm going to cry, but I just end up laughing I'm so happy. That's also what I did when we found out the gender. Annnnd on our wedding day. Tears? Nope, just crazy, happy laughter.







It will be so weird not to style over a huge ol' bump anymore, though I know I won't be right back to my old clothes for a while. I have a couple maternity looks left for you, so tune in the next couple of weeks for the final round of maternity style. Then you can gear up for some baby style coming your way! :)

-Molly

Shop my outfit: 
Booties (similar)
Headband



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Bragging on my Husband

Bragging on my Husband





I'm so excited to share Round 2 of our maternity photos with you today! If you haven't seen the first post, check them out here. This set of photos is just quintessentially Kansas City: artsy, casual, and dog-friendly, complete with a shuttlecock in the background.

They were shot by Mike & Lauren Photography, who I cannot say enough good things about! I mean, these images speak for themselves, but the whole process of taking the photos was so fun and seamless as well. Be sure to check them out for engagement and wedding photos; their portfolio is stunning! I talked more about the photo process in my last photos post, if you're curious to read more about that.



Now I'd just like to take this post to brag on my husband, Andy, for being a total superhero throughout my whole pregnancy. My guy, the man behind the lens, shoots all the photos for the blog and is so supportive of me all the time, but this pregnancy has made me extra thankful and appreciative of him.

I've seen so much posted on pregnancy forums (these can be a real black hole, ha!) about moms-to-be feeling like they're bearing so much of the burden, because not only are they carrying the child, but their husbands or significant others aren't really involved with much of the preparation either. I get that it isn't every man's cup of tea, but I wanted someone to share in everything with me, and he's really stepped up to the plate and then some. Here are just some of the things he's done that have made me so appreciative.



-Early on in my pregnancy, he returned from a work trip with incredibly fancy stretch-mark preventing all-natural body wax for me. On his last trip, he came home with a stylish little baby boy outfit from Zara.

-He was probably more involved in choosing items for and building our registry than I was. He knows more about ins and outs of stroller types and gear than anyone out there. He even added breast pump-to-bottle adapters to the registry. This guy thinks of everything.

-He's attended all my baby showers. He scheduled all of our hospital birth classes. He's gone to every single doctor's appt. When we've gone to birthing classes, hospital tours, etc. he does lots of research beforehand and shows up with a list of questions, in addition to the ones we've talked about beforehand.

-He has carried out my vision for our over-the-top nursery all by himself, because I can't be around paint and fumes. There was even a point when he told me our 3-D wall panels just weren't going to work out and I basically didn't take no for an answer. We brainstormed and found a solution and this man has made that wall look like actual magic. (I knew he could, which is why I held strong, haha.)

-He puts his head by my belly and talks to the baby. He sits with me every couple of weeks as we read through two different pregnancy books (What to Expect When You're Expecting and Mama Natural) to hear all about the baby's development and what we should be planning for.

-He's been cooking and eating tons of healthy meals with me, as I'm trying to give the baby good nutrients. That meat lover even went a couple of weeks without meat, and went along with my dishes of lentils, and other mostly veggie dishes. There are some days I come home so tired, I have to lie down and rest (pregnancy exhaustion is so far beyond any other tired that exists, it's insane), and he has taken over most of the cooking and dishes most nights.

-When I apologized for going to so many Bar Method classes after work and leaving him with the cooking, he said, "well, you're just taking care of you and baby!"

-Every time I say I'm feeling fat (which is basically all the time now), he stops me and says, "No, you're pregnant!"

-When I was getting ready for my office holiday party, and trying on the handful of dresses I had that still semi-fit,  I asked his opinion on one, and he said "Well, I know you're wanting to look your best, and there might be others that are more flattering on you right now." Maybe some people wouldn't want to hear that, but I was so appreciative that he was honest with me; that's exactly why I was asking!



-One morning started with my fancy Vitamin C face oil flying out of the medicine cabinet and shattering everywhere and me yelling "OH NO!!!" (Really, did it have to be the most expensive beauty product I own that broke?) When I got home from work, I found he'd gone to Ulta, with a photo of the broken bottle and gotten me a new one, saying "you deserve nice things." (That one might have made my cry.)

-When I had a rough day at work, the next day, he came home with an ice-cream cookie sandwich from Betty Rae's. (To be fair, I don't think he minds extra snacks and dessert runs ๐Ÿ˜‚).

-He constantly talks about doing house and woodworking projects with our son when he's a little older, adding, "as long as he likes doing that kind of stuff." Otherwise, they can bake together.

-When we watched "A Series of Unfortunate Events" together, he said he couldn't wait to watch it with our son, mostly because of the lesson that "in the end, smart kids win." I have honestly never been so attracted to him.

-This man already knows more about my bodily functions than I ever would have hoped and he doesn't act freaked out, or treat me like I'm an ogre, even though I 100% feel like one.

-I've been starting to have contractions and leg cramps over the past few weeks, and, yes, right as the first episode of the latest season of Game of Thrones was airing, I finally decided to take a warm bath after an evening of it being pushed back, and he came in with a pillow, lavender essential oils in a diffuser and a plastic wine glass filled with non-alcoholic sparkling wine. And then we watched GoT, an hour later than everyone else. What a guy.

I know I'm all hormonal and sappy and emotional these days, but I just wanted to take some time to shoutout the man behind the blog, because he is already the best caretaker and I know will be the best dad I could hope to have for our little babe!

Knowing my son is half Andy and that he'll have the example to follow of such a smart, hard-working guy that cooks as well as he builds, plays music, values education, and takes such good care of his insanely hormonal pregnant wife makes me even more excited to meet our baby. And gosh, I sure hope our baby sleeps like him. That man can sleep anywhere, at any time, doing anything. (In case you're puking from the sweetness, I guess I can add that his insanely loud nail-biting makes me want to throw myself out of a moving vehicle every time we're in the car, so he's not perfect, guys!)



Also, can I please shoutout our pup Reese, the CUTEST LIL DOG and best big-fur-sister to be! People keep telling me she'll just be a dog when we have a baby. Which honestly sounds so sad to me at this point. Yes, I get that the attention will definitely shift. Yes, I get that she is not a human. But she's been our baby for over 5 years now and I'm so excited to see her and our child get to know each other. She's great with kids, and I know she'll want to be a part of everything we do with the baby. I'm so glad that our son will grow up around such a fun and hilarious pup to keep him entertained!







Thanks for getting sappy with me today!

I've got more maternity style coming up in the next couple of weeks, as well as a nursery reveal, and, of course a baby announcement, when our little fella decides to make his entrance. I'd love for you to comment or message and let me know if you're interested in seeing baby content, or if you're more here for just style posts. Obviously, my child will now be a huge part of my life, but I'm really trying to weigh the "mommy blogger" vs "blogger who happens to be a mom" balance here and would love your thoughts!

-Molly


You can shop my outfit below: 





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Navy Floral Maternity Dress

Navy Floral Maternity Dress





A couple of weeks ago, we had a seriously wonderful second baby shower with my hometown friends, who I have known for literal decades now (most over 20 years!). We are currently stocked with tons of diapers, lots of baby essentials, books, and basically a full wardrobe until our kid is 2 years old. But most importantly, we have felt such a sense of love, community, and support for both ourselves and our little guy already! It really is overwhelming in the best possible way.



 I am IN LOVE with this navy floral dress, and in my ASOS stories try-on on my Instagram, I think people voted for me to keep this dress more than any other item. I feel like it's super flattering for a big bump: it's not too clingy, or flowy, the sturdy material covers a lot, and makes you feel fancy all at the same time. (I've linked tons of my favorite similar maternity dresses and other blue floral dresses below!) It ended up being a chillier day, but I'd already had it planned that I was going to wear this dress, so sorry, Mother Nature, I just decided to totally ignore you and look like spring. Take that.
 

I now officially have less than a month until the baby is due, and it's crazy to think that I'm shifting from all of these maternity things (clothes, skincare, diet) to thinking about the labor and delivery process and then taking care of an actual real-live baby! It sounds silly, because women have done this billions of times, but it's just so wild to experience it firsthand. Everyone keeps telling me "this is the easy part" but honestly, as hard as what comes next will be, I also can't imagine how rewarding it must be.









Be sure to be on the lookout over the next couple of weeks for some other fun maternity looks I have planned. There's a pretty definite end on how long I can style a bump, so I'm trying to get all my favorite looks shot to share with you. And, if maternity style isn't your thing, well it will be over soon! ha!

-Molly

Outfit Details: 
Slides (similar)


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Blue Velvet Maternity Photos

Blue Velvet Maternity Photos



YOU GUYS I AM DYING OVER OUR MATERNITY PHOTOS RN! And can I please just live in this dress?

A childhood friend of mine, who now shoots weddings with her husband, so graciously offered to shoot our maternity photos, and they are just beyond stunning! Not only is she my friend, but Lauren, of Mike & Lauren Photography is a total pro who made the experience so fun and easy for us! She put up with our dog running around, carried my purse around while photographing, and knew exactly where to have us stand and look, without feeling too posed or cheesy. In fact, there were so many good photos, I'm breaking them up into two different posts: one with our formal photos and one with our more casual ones. These are the casual ones of course (lol jk).



Even though I'm feeling large and in charge right now, I knew we were going to get flattering shots when she told us to angle or pose in ways that kept us from getting double chins, or making my arms look more slender. It's all about angles people, and I'm struggling to know what my good ones are these days!

After the shoot, my husband mentioned how fun it had been, and how nice it was to have a photoshoot just focused on the baby. We were really able to take some time and not just focus on my big 'ol belly, but on the little miracle kicking away inside who we'll soon get to meet!

(Sidenote: I get tons of questions on my nail color shown just below every time I wear it: it's Sally Hansen Insta-Dri in Buff and Tumble and it's my go-to lately. It seriously dries so quick that you can apply a second coat within about 2 minutes! No one has to know I painted my nails on the way to the shoot. Except everyone now knows, I guess.)





If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen the big ASOS haul I put on my stories a couple of months ago, and I got great feedback on this blue dress when I polled people on what I should keep. Even if it wasn't the most practical, it made me feel like a princess (and it was on super sale!), so I knew when I decided to keep it that it would be making an appearance in maternity photos.

I now feel strongly that, in addition to a little black dress, every woman needs a long blue dress. It's equal parts elegant and fun, princess-like and bold, empowering and feminine. And you can't wear one without feeling insanely glam. I've linked tons of gorgeous similar options below, from maternity sizes, to non-maternity, to tall, to petite. I've also linked similar white shoes and pearl hair barrettes. (Speaking of which, is THE IT accessory of the season. You honestly may not see me sans barrette for the next year.)

Can we also talk about how dapper my husband looks?! He was not totally sure about wearing the blue shoes with his ensemble, but it ended up being such a nice tie-in to my dress and he rocked them! Our outfits have a special added little sentiment, because both his floral shirt and my white shoes were bought on our trip to Paris last summer!

Coordinating our outfits for this shoot has also made me really look forward to coordinating with our little guy when he comes along too! I hope he's into letting mom pick out his clothes until he's at least 15! ha!









I already can't wait to share round 2 with you coming up soon!

I can't stress this enough: look into Mike & Lauren photography if you're in the KC area! Judging by their stunning portfolio of engagement and wedding photos, I know that brides, brides-to-be and other moms-to-be would be in equally wonderful hands for a photoshoot.

-Molly






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Navy Embroidered Dress

Navy Embroidered Dress



A couple of weeks ago, we had our first baby shower,  thrown my my husband's family in Illinois. From the lovely tearoom setting, to the adorable space theme found in decor, cookies, and bath bombs, to the wonderful people that equipped up with all sorts of helpful baby stuff, it was so much fun! We now have a dining room that's out of commission because it's filled with all sorts of items for baby. We're hoping to get it all into the nursery within the next few weeks!



If you follow me on Instagram, you may already recognize this dress, which I got in an ASOS maternity haul, where I had people vote on which items I should keep. I think this dress was the most overwhelmingly liked item of all the pieces I tried on. Not only is is lovely and fancy, but it's also so comfortable! 



After this 30 week mark, dresses are feeling so much nicer than pants! I can't wait until the weather gets slightly warmer and stays that way, so I can just live a pants-less pregnant life for my last couple of months!

In case you haven't been keeping up, our baby is due May 21st, and we've been told by our doctor, he's measuring really long. I'm getting bigger by the second, and his kicks are getting freaky-strong! We're so incredibly excited to meet him, and now that we're equipped with lots of baby gear, it makes it feel all that much more real. I can't wait to keep sharing maternity looks with you over the coming weeks, and the nursery design as we get the decor finished!



Sidenote: can I just mention that I love my bangs and feel like I don't like me without them, but geez, do they look stupid in the wind. I feel like I can go from profesh blogger to goofy 5-year-old in no time at all. ๐Ÿ˜‚These photos are the best out of all of them I took wind-wise.





Check out my outfit details below, including similar dresses that are non-maternity as well!

-Molly



Outfit Details: 
Similar Maternity Dresses: here, here and here
Similar Non-Maternity Dresses: here, here, and here




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Think Pink with Pinkblush Maternity

Think Pink with Pinkblush Maternity



Can I get real with you for a minute? Being pregnant is really hard. Don't get me wrong, I could not be more thrilled to carry this baby, and feel his kicks, and to see all the insanely miraculous things my body is capable of on a daily basis. It truly is amazing. I know so many people who are having or have had a hard time getting pregnant, so please don't think for a second I don't realize how lucky I am.

But, at the same time, my body is completely out of my control. From passing out on a plane due to low blood pressure, to not being able to push myself as hard in workouts without getting really dizzy, to having to constantly eat to not feel nauseous (ugh, I'm soooo sick of snacking!), to watching cellulite pop up on my legs where it has never been, and see the scale go from creeping up in numbers to just leaping daily. Everything seems so out of place, and there's really not much I can do about it other than continue to eat well, stay as active as I'm able to, and try to keep a sense of humor about it all.



It sounds like such a whiny complaint, since I know that so many people go through muuuuuch rougher pregnancies than me, but it's kind of hard not to lose your identity in maternity clothes that are all made for people who only wear flowy neutrals and empire waist tops (and these look amazing on some people! They're just not "me"). High waist black jeans and array of crop tops has been my go to over the past few years. Bright colors and patterns have kind of been my signature. With my waistline completely gone, it's honestly been hard to "feel like me" over the past 7 months. At one point, my husband found me in the target maternity section looking completely defeated and almost yelling, "I'm going to cry if I have to buy another neutral colored shirt! And you can put one of these flowy long tunic tops on my cold, dead body!" Dramatic? 1000%, but hormones are crazy things, people. And the sentiment isn't that far off. (Again, some people look SO good and effortless and stylish in these; I just look like I'm playing the role of a character that is not me.)

That's why I was so excited when PinkBlush reached out to me to feature one of their maternity items on the blog. Color! Texture! Dresses that I'd actually want to wear postpartum! After going through lots of options deciding if I should go with a very practical blouse, or something with a little more pizzaz, I obviously settled on the latter, with this gorgeous pink velvet gown. But, for real, how could I turn this down?!


PinkBlush actually has a great array of casual itemsactivewear, and fancy maternity dresses in maternity and non-maternity styles alike. (And, no, it's not all pink!) There are lots of pieces that would be just perfect for a shower or maternity shoot. Something that makes them unique is that they make tons of items that fit you from pre-pregnancy, through your whole pregnancy, and postpartum as well. This dress doesn't have side panels, so I love the idea that I can wear it even when I don't have a giant belly too! If you aren't pregnant, be sure to check out their non-maternity stuff too. They have lots of cute sundresses I'm already eyeing that will be perfect for a post-baby body this summer and for years to come.


In thinking of where I wanted to shoot such a gorgeous dress, one place came to mind: Stock Hill, an amazing steakhouse that is perfectly modern and classic all at the same time. I mean, what better place to make a pink velvet dress pop than in front of a green velvet couch? From food to decor, they are always killing it and it's my and my husband's favorite place to stop by for a nightcap (or mocktail) and dessert or snacks, especially if we're all dolled up.



I'm also looking forward to donning this dress again next week at KC Fashion Week (stay tuned for more on that!) and into the future as well. Thanks again to PinkBlush for this lovely gift  of a gorgeous dress, and maybe more importantly, helping me regain a little of my fashion sanity.

And thank you, if you came here and read through this post. I love taking happy, fun photos, but sometimes it's also really nice to get things off your chest!

-Molly

Outfit Details: 
Dress c/o Pinkblush
Silver Shoes (similar)



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