Lovely Simply

Style and Lifestyle in New England

Tag: ootd

Cropped Spirits

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I have been missing. Quiet on every front for a few weeks now. Maybe it’s been months. The days blend a little bit once we hit this point in the winter. I surrender my flag–always weary of the cold, but more so because of the never ending energy of a toddler, the weariness in my bones, my longing to let him (and myself) run ragged outside, barefoot and delighted. Those days will come. But by February I am always, always defeated by Winter. And March becomes the opposite of its name– not a brave, knee-up, piccolo playing, jaunty march to the finish, but a desperate crawl. Maybe an army craw to stay within the theme here, but a crawl nonetheless. I never beat winter. 5ea416b3-a511-4b8c-97ce-38abf0f54b5a-2

e96dbb20-b82d-4c61-a040-9d3b15695736-1In other news, and more important than the weather, I have been building a baby in my womb. He or she is still tiny right now. I am finishing the first trimester this week, but my body remembers vividly what to do, and my belly has expanded, pushing at the edges, regaining its old shape– the one that Redmond created. Which is why I wore these culotte jeans pretty much as soon as they arrived from NA-KD because….let’s be honest, they’re not fitting me anymore. I put them away after an afternoon outing with a promise to come back to them next year. In the spring. When I have two babies. What a wild thought. I have been eager to try the culotte denim trend and I liked it. I adore the idea of it for the warmer months with a loose Tshirt and flat sneakers. Maybe lace up sandals and a crop top. An iced coffee in hand, and a leisurely walk, pushing the stroller, through a little downtown somewhere. That sounds nice. I don’t ask for much. Sun on my shoulders would go a long way. 


I love this clothing brand–the things they carry are hip and on trend and not terribly expensive. And you can get 20% off with the code HANNAh2017 if you, like me, are in desperate need of a little pick me up. I don’t indulge in retail therapy with terrible frequency. But these days….I need a little.

Culotte jeans c/o Nakd

Protect The Skin You’re In

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Get ready for some rambling folks. It does all connect back to this outfit. I promise. Because this dress is made of UPF fabric and protects your skin from the sun. Plus it is as soft as your most luxurious pajamas and it looks cute as all get out. This is one of my favorite outfits that I’ve featured on this blog. It’s from Shedo Lane and it’s only 45$. Which, as my cousin said, is basically free since by wearing it you’re actually making yourself healthier…I like her logic. And now, enter Ramble.

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It seems to be a phenomenon of our society that things that aren’t good for us are always in style. Smoking (back in the day). Tanning. Being overly skinny. You know? And why is being tan beautiful? I have a lot of theories about society and skin– in our country, if you are able to be tan, it means that you are able to afford to go on vacations, spend time relaxing on the beach or at the pool–that you don’t have to WORK all the time to survive. Even if it is subconscious, that’s what it means. Its shown in those ads that say “Look like you just got back from a tropical vacation! Try our tanning beds!” Why do I need to look like I just got back from a tropical vacation? I don’t have the money for that. And I don’t need to trick people into thinking I do to procure their envy or their admiration. Is any of this making sense? What I’m saying is, I’m done. The skin that covers my body is precious. And it happens to be pretty pale. And I am ready to accept that and embrace that and protect that. Because, I really, really, really want to see my grand kids. I really do. And I exercise, and eat well, and get myself checked, and do all the things to ensure that I’ll be here for a while. And I’m going to add ‘protect my skin’ to that list.

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And as far as sunscreen– I am prone to conspiracy theories when it comes to the regular brands (don’t laugh at me. I love a good conspiracy theory. And it isn’t my fault. Its my husbands.) Does anyone know of any super natural ones that work well? Drop it in the comments because I want to upgrade this year.

wrap dress c/o/white clutch  (it came with a set of make up. Love the make up, love the clutch)/ gold choker c/o (fair trade artisan jewelry), black choker, old similar here

LBD of The Day

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The Little Black Dress is nothing new. Obviously. But this one is new to me, and I don’t have a single thing like it in my closet. I did have a moment when I opened the package where I was like…can I pull this off? Is it too cool for me? Because, I’m closing in on thirty and I worry that my “cool” is fading. If I ever had any “cool” in the first place. This dress is seriously cool. Like– it girl cool. And I am not an it girl, but I still freaking love it, and I have these fantasies of wearing it as the weather gets colder with tights and ankle boots to a fabulous sort of happy hour type place in Portsmouth or Kennebunkport. In my fantasy, Redmond is not necessarily throwing crayons across the table or pointing eagerly at my cocktail requesting a sip with his sweet, persistent “prease? prease? prease? prease?” I am, to be quite honest, sort of fiending for some grown up time. In November, a group of my dearest girl pals are coming to visit for a long weekend and I am so excited it feels like I could burst. You know what else this dress would be perfect for? Karaoke. Cause that is definitely happening when the four of us ladies are all reunited.

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Today, it is warm and humid. Redmond is still sleeping at 9:00. My nose is stuffed, and my eyes are tired, and I am thinking for the hundredth time that I want a vacation….somewhere quiet with my little family to just walk in the woods, drink hot cider, sleep into the late morning– you know. Nothing fancy. Just a recharge. Wouldn’t that be nice? But I am trying (trying, trying) to actively seize and enjoy every day in Redmond’s little life, because he is not so little anymore. And life is terribly short. And I am so very fortunate to have the life that I have. To remember this when I am tired, and feel that deep sense of being overwhelmed, makes all the difference.

 

dress c/o Dezzaladidas

That Seventies Thing

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As a teenager, I liked anything that was retro. I went through a long fifties stage, and I dabbled in a seventies phase as well– with bell bottoms, fringe, head scarves– you know, everything that keeps coming back into style. I guess they just really got it right back then, because I feel as if a little seventies flavor is always in style. This denim jumpsuit from Dezzal is basically a dream come true for me. Big huge bell bottom flares? Check. Lace up detail? Check. So freaking comfortable it feels like pajamas (apparently a must for me…)? Check. I wore it with a belt and clogs for a little added fanciness, but I am going to wear it today with lace up flats and unbelted to keep it a touch more casual. I also tried it on over a long sleeved turtleneck, and yeah, that’s going to be happening once the days are chillier.  img_9281

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img_9273These days, Redmond is walking all around. He gains more confidence every day, and I am at once achingly proud of him and terribly lonely for the little baby he once was. He is already moving into toddlerdom, and I feel like I’m not ready. I haven’t built up enough patience for the tantrums that are sure to mount. I haven’t gotten used to having a baby– I still feel excited and astounded sometimes when I remember I have this little human that was made inside of my body and he’s ours now. That novelty hasn’t worn off yet, and here he is climbing (and falling down) stairs, and going down the slide, and using words to communicate. And holding my hand and walking beside me. img_9271

 

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I don’t have the plethora of words that I usually have tonight. I just stuffed some broccoli, pasta, sausage, and tomato sauce into my face. It’s 9:00. I got home with Redmond a little late, and of course the dog had puked all over the floor. Which is what she does when she is annoyed . Toting Redmond, I cleaned up the vomit, let the dog out, fed her and the cat, nursed Redmond, and then finally got some food into my own belly. Better late than never. Nick is a coach and he has lots of evening games this time of the year. We miss him, but I am proud of how hard he works and how good he is at what he does. And I am proud of myself for managing…even though I only have one child (and a very large dog) to take care of– I still revel in the feeling of capability when the house is quiet, and the baby is sleeping, and things are sort of clean (because, lets be honest, them dishes ain’t getting washed tonight.) and I am rambling now. Far off the topic of a soft as butter jumpsuit and a pair of seventies style clogs. I’m going to turn it on in folks. img_9275

denim jumpsuit c/o Dezzal

clogs c/o Shop Amara (on sale for 25$!!)

Redmonds jumpsuit (on sale)

Redmonds shoes (on sale)

 

Jump. Jump. Jump.

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Oh, hey September! Look at you just creeping yourself on in. I feel two ways about the beginnings of this new month…On the one hand, I’m thrilled because it means we get to start our budget over and can do fun things again like meals out, and dessert nights, ect. But on the other hand, I’m sad because it means winter is closer, school is starting, and Redmond is a month older (stop growing already kid!). They keep saying its going to be a warm few months though (because, you know, climate change and we are all going to explode into a fiery mess and OH MY GOSH I AM NERVOUS BUT ALSO HAPPY BECAUSE ITS WARM BUT ALSO NERVOUS) so I think it’s all right. Plus, I had a hot almond milk hazelnut latte (please, extra hot, and in a mug, and extra foam, and blah blah blah…I’m kidding, I’m not that girl.) this morning on a wonderful date with Erica of Honey Bee boutique and I didn’t hate holding that nice steamy mug in my hands. And Redmond didn’t hate eating his entire croissant plus half of his little friends blueberry scone plus a granola bar plus grapes…Um. Anyway.

Deep purples remind me of Fall. But a one shoulder cut keeps summer going. A leopard print scarf sort of hints at cooler temperatures. But lace up sandals are all “let’s go to the farmers market and pick up some fresh tomatoes.” So what I’m saying is…this outfit from Back East Boutique is a glorious balance. img_8969 img_8976img_8977

I feel like I’ll be wearing a lot of jumpsuits over the next few months. There is something a little cooler about them than a regular bottom and top combo and they are just as easy as throwing on a dress. But, you know, edgier. And I’ve been feeling edgy. I’m creeping ever closer to my thirtieth birthday and it’s now or never. Well, I guess I could bust out the “Edge” at sixty too but I’d rather do it now.

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jumpsuit c/o (can be worn as one shoulder or off the shoulder)

sandals

bracelet c/o

 

The Big One

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This past weekend, Redmond and his cousin celebrated their first and second birthdays (respectively.) My sister and I basically planned the entire thing about three days before it happened because I kept putting it off– the planning of it made it so very real…Redmond is a whole year old. It has been an entire year since we brought him home– since we took our first walk around the neighborhood–my two day old held close in the grey wrap that I clumsily and fearfully put on. There are so many firsts in this thing called motherhood. The first bath, the first blowout, the first tantrum (getting my share of those this week…) the first steps (his record is three right now), and of course, the first birthday. With the universal appeal of Pinterest and the ever rising pressure of Instagram, I felt mildly overwhelmed about the prospect of THE party. I didn’t want to spend a lot of money, and I didn’t want to spend precious summer hours working on crafts. Luckily my sister and I both did most of the work for our own weddings (with lots of help from friends and family) so we have a plethora of table cloths and bunting and general decor. So we pulled our things out of storage and gave them all a second life. Nick built a tepee, my sister made some insanely good food, and I did some serious baking. We cut some greenery from a few trees, hung up some bunting, and called it good. And it was good. A real good day. img_8021

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We had some friends and some family, and Redmond reveled in the attention (I don’t know where he gets that from….). I made little personal cakes for Red and Aurelia. I figured he’d have a few nibbles and move on…Aurelia took a few dainty bites out of hers, and Redmond picked up his entire cake and ate almost the whole thing. Like a baby cake monster. img_8023

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This past week has been an exercise in patience. And I have found it necessary to remind myself continuously that these days are short and that I need to treasure them. My usually content and independent boy has been constantly wanting to be held. There are times when this is nice, but to be honest, I’ve been listening to a lot of whining and crying because I just very simply cannot hold him all of the time. I know (at least I hope) that this is a phase and that it will pass, but for now, I am tired.

But when I look back on the speed with which this year has streaked by, I know that this will all seem distant in no time. I already get waves of nostalgia for last year. I mean, I get nostalgic for days that we had like a month ago. Life can get so cluttered, and I want to be able to strip away my guilt (the house isn’t clean enough, I’m not working enough, I’m eating too much ice cream, I am not patient enough) and allow myself to just sit in bed with Redmond, put on some Justin Bieber, and let him dance and snuggle and wrestle and be happy. That’s exactly what we did today when Nick got home, and it was wonderful. img_8025

 

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To end this post, here’s a round up of things that Redmond likes lately.

The jungle gym at the playground. Cantaloupe. Thai food. Being in any body of water. The playhut at my gym (he graduated to the big kid side.) Playing ball with Lupe, our dog. Any ball ever. Walking while holding my hand. Top forty hits (especially Bieber). Wrestling with his daddy. Giving slobbery kisses, and lingering just long enough to make it mildly awkward. Pointing at everything he is curious about. Giving hugs out after he’s been naughty.

Things he doesn’t like.

Diaper changes. Getting into his car seat when he’s tired. The second nap of the day. Kale. Being put down when he’s in snuggle mode.

All in all he’s our favorite thing. And Lupe is coming around to him too. img_8026

Reds shirt c/o / my dress, old/ woodland creature cake toppers/

Wedded Blissfully

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I’m finally getting around to posting these photos from a big wedding weekend we had in Massachusetts for Nicks brother and his beautiful bride. I feel like I have been wildly behind on most things lately, and am having a hard time catching up. I still feel like I’m sort of treading water these days, and the advent of Redmond crawling and trying to walk has made that feeling even more intense. My patience feels thin sometimes, and worn. And I catch myself snapping at him, or sighing with frustration, or telling him to just stay put. And I have to remind myself that these days are fleeting. My baby is growing up.

I love weddings. I love dressing up, seeing the bride in all her glory, the food, the drinks,  the dancing. I love all of it. I love being reminded of our wedding as well– and I always feel a little more in love with my husband when we are together at these events. Our four year anniversary is coming up in three weeks, and it is is simultaneously hard to believe that it has been four whole years and that it has been ONLY four years. In so many ways, I feel like I’ve been with him forever. Like my life before him was a whole different one. Just like our life before Redmond seems hazy and far away. img_7900

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These days of motherhood are beautiful and easy and difficult and messy and rewarding and exhausting and blissful. But I always feel deeply, deeply blessed to have a partner in my husband– someone who is an incredible father. Someone who makes me feel beautiful even when I am in a dirty t-shirt and an old pair of boxer shorts. Someone who makes me laugh hysterically on long car rides. A man who shares my passion for all things Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings. A man who adores his son. A man who things it’s funny and charming that I give every animal ever a voice (our dog is constantly talking back.) A man who loves me deeply, purely, and entirely. I do not take this for granted. Not for one single moment do I take it for granted. img_7899

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Even in these wild, new days of the entrance into toddler-hood (A post to come on Redmond turning 0ne) and the beginnings of tantrums, and the exhaustion that comes along with it, he is patient with me. And patient with Redmond. And he calms my frazzled nerves.

I meant to get a good family photo at the wedding. We are so rarely all dressed up together, and Nick looked so handsome, and Red looked so cute…but of course, we forgot to ask someone to take it, and by the time I remembered, the light was mostly gone. But we took one anyway. And even though its blurry and shadowed, I love it.img_8005

Anyway. Redmond has been keeping up a steady stream of wails upstairs as he fights his nap…so I’m going to mix myself a mojito and put on some music while I cook dinner. And I bet that eventually he will fall asleep….right? (Update. No. He did not fall asleep. I eventually rescued him from his forty five minute battle with the Nap enemy.)

outfit details: dress c/o Cuddy Studios/ clutch c/o Daylin Skye

Man Bag, Girl Bag

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Nick constantly teases me because…I’m sort of a shambles of a human being when it comes to my purse. It’s like an extension of my car (which is an utter embarrassment…) and I just shove stuff in and zip it shut and hope for the best. Whenever I need to find something, I am digging around, sometimes in a minor panic, and trash is sort of flying out of it, and I look like a full on mess. Remember when I said I had lost my keys in this post? I ended up finding them in a cranny of a diaper bag…So my point is, I really love to carry a small bag when I can. I can’t lose anything inside of it because there isn’t any space to. But with a nearly one-year-old (WHAT?HOW?), I can’t downsize very often. Until last week when Nick got his own diaper backpack. A man one. A man diaper bag that is so cool looking that Nick was excited to bring it. Its from Twisted Mustard Seed’s warrior collection, and is everything a diaper bag should be with lots of space, an insulated snack box, and a nice, big changing pad. So I brought this tiny, beautiful vegan leather mini and carried just my barest essentials and it was amazing. The bag was a generous gift from Daylin Skye and is truly so lovely. Handmade, and with gorgeous detail. I love a small business run my a creative woman!img_6959

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I miss Thailand basically all of the time, so last week, we decided to have an “Asian” day in Portland. We went to Bubble Maineia for cold bubble teas (it was REALLY hot that day), then stopped in at a little Asian super market for pocky and a yogurt drink for Red, and some Thai groceries to take home. Red sipped his drink and ate his strawberry pocky on the quiet little green that is pictured up there before we continued on to do some shopping. I wore a favorite two piece outfit that I found in a Thai clothing market the last time we visited my “home” country. I paired it with my new watch from Arvo–I felt like its pink band was the perfect playful touch– and a pair of comfy kicks for walking.img_6958

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We had dinner at a relatively disappointing Japanese place that was clearly irritated with us for having a baby and rushed us out as fast as they could….to the point where we hadn’t even taken a bite of our ramen and the waitress asked us if she could package it up for us… “Can I get some to-go boxes for you?” “Um, no, I’m going to eat it…” So yeah. Bound to happen I guess. We just haven’t yet experienced it. To lift our spirits, we stopped in Wells for ice cream at scoop deck which is everything an ice cream joint should be. img_6961

It was a good day. Another good day. We have had a lot of them this summer. I am in the trenches of planning (last minute because OF COURSE) Redmonds one year birthday party for this weekend. His cousin is turning two, so they are having a joint party. Hopefully the first of many. I can’t believe that this time last year I was desperately hoping to go into labor. Huge with child, full of longing to hold him in my arms. And now, he’s almost walking…Time…its a crazy thing, am I right?

Anyway. That’s all I have for today. I would love to hear about some of your favorite summer things to do!

diaper bag c/o Twisted Mustard Seed/ vegan mini bag c/o Daylin Skye Designs/ pink watch c/o Arvo