ONE little MOMMA: February 2016

I thought I was pregnant...

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Last week I had the pleasure of reading an article written by a friend from high school. She and I are birthday twins and have been friends for years. I've loved following her career as we've been apart and there have been many times I've been envious of her New York living, magazine writing life. She's the coolest. And after reading her honest article about trying to get pregnant, I loved her even more. 
In her article, she did what I love and hate the most, which is to be vulnerable and open about something that no one else likes to be open about. It's the hardest and most rewarding thing. She so kindly cited me as a tiny part of what gave her that courage and that, oddly enough, gave me courage to share something too. 
You see last week I thought I was pregnant again. Yeah, again. Like I have a four month old and three other kids and holy crap I might be pregnant. Insert TERRIFIED emoji. And EMBARRASSED emoji. 
I was so scared and so embarrassed. 
I love babies, I tolerate being pregnant and I do want more kids. But not yet. I don't want numbers four and five to be 14 months apart. I don't want to do last year all over again. I don't want to lose my mind for nine more months. ( I really struggle mentally while pregnant.) And I don't think I can do my job and be a mom and be pregnant again this year. 
And I was really nervous about the thought of sharing the news. What would people say? What would they all think? Clearly we hadn't been careful enough! The whole, "Don't you know how that happens?" comment would have been all too on point. Uh, we do. And uh, yes, this was an accident. 
So yes, terrified and embarrassed sums it up. 
I haven't started my cycle again yet after having Baker but there were several days of bloating, several pounds of weight gain, enough crazy thoughts to get me to run into the store to buy a pregnancy test on the way to Legoland with my kids. I just couldn't wait a second longer to find out. I chugged a ton of water, about peed myself on the way in and I took that lovely test in the Legoland bathroom. Yes, that is about as unromantic as it gets, but I couldn't wait for the perfect moment to take such a life altering test. Legoland it was. And it came out negative. Holy cow, I've never been more relieved to find that I tested negative for something. 
In my circles and situation, rarely does anyone talk about being scared they are pregnant.  I have friends who really are trying to get pregnant and I desperately wish I could send help their way. I wish their pregnancy tests would be positive. I wish, I wish! 
As women we don't talk about a lot of things. We don't share things because we are afraid of offending someone else or seeming ungrateful for the things we have that someone else doesn't.  But when we don't share, we lose out on a chance to connect with people. 
When I was in counseling my therapist talked a lot about the concept of 'owning our story' and I've found that owning our story allows other people to own theirs too.  I might be scared that telling my friends without kids that I hoped I wasn't pregnant would hurt their feelings. But really I would hope that by sharing my fears, then they could share theirs and we could just root for each other. No comparison needed. Just cheering for each other in our own stories. 

Stitch Fix Maternity with OLM

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TEE- Stitch Fix // JEANS- J Crew Factory // SHOES- TJ Maxx // EARRINGS- N&S London Tan Cut-Out // CUFF- N&S

TEE- Stitch Fix Maternity // PANTS- H&M // SANDALS- Thrifted // EARRINGS- N&S Matte Gold large

TEE- Stitch Fix Maternity // LEGGINGS- Zella // TANK- Blanqi // SHOES- Old Navy // BAG- Lily Jade // HAT- Target // EARRINGS- N&S Cognac Cut Out large


DRESS- Stitch Fix Maternity // JACKET- GAP // SHOES- Nordstrom // BAG- Nordstrom

DRESS- Stitch Fix Maternity // SHOES- Chicwish // JACKET- Forever 21

DRESS- Stitch Fix Maternity // BAG- Freshly Picked // CUFF- N&S

SWEATER- Stitch Fix // LEGGINGS- Zella // BOOTS- Nordstrom // EARRINGS- N&S London Tan Cut-Out large
About 18 months ago I signed up for my first Stitch Fix box and I've been a subscriber ever since. (If you are new to Stitch Fix, you can learn more about it in a post I wrote here.)  I love getting my monthly fix and when I got pregnant last year I was pretty sure Stitch Fix and I would be breaking up for nine months. But then I got the news that Stitch Fix had added maternity clothes to their offerings! Best. News. Ever.

If you've ever been pregnant before you know that there is no time in your life when it's harder to find cute clothes. Even with as far as maternity clothing has come, its still really, really hard to find things you love , things that fit and things that you can afford. Stitch Fix Maternity to the rescue! 

I looked forward to my fix even more during my pregnancy because I knew everything in there would be an option. It wasn't like going to the store and being confined to a tiny back corner filled with empire waists. Everything in my box would be belly friendly and worth trying on. Now that doesn't mean I kept everything they sent, but I did keep more than usual. It was one of my favorite places to get maternity clothes this time around. 

I do have a few tips for subscribing to a maternity fix rather than a normal fix. It's basically the same process, but I learned a few things that you ought to keep in mind. 

1. Adjust your pant and top size in your profile. I didn't stay the same pant size while I was pregnant, but I forgot to adjust that in my profile. Some people do stay the same size, but I went up a size or two before my belly came into the picture. That meant I had several pairs of maternity pants show up in my fixes that were just too small. 

2.  Make comments in the notes section. Describe the kind of clothes you like to wear while you are pregnant. I don't like over the belly pants until I'm VERY pregnant so I made a note for my stylist that I wanted her to send under the belly pants for most of my fixes. 

3. Try everything on. I'll admit that sometimes I get lazy and keep or buy things without trying them on. But especially with maternity clothes and a changing body, you really need to try everything on. Things will fit differently than you expect- in a good or bad way- which leads me to my next tip.

4. Be open to new styles. I also discovered I loved wearing knit dresses while I was pregnant and so I told my stylist to keep on sending them. There were also old standbys like over sized sweaters that I thought would work, but actually didn't during some parts of pregnancy.
 
5. Give yourself permission to buy more than usual. My general rule is to buy at least one item from my fix so that I don't loose the $20 styling fee. Sometimes I buy more than one, but I do pay out of pocket for my fixes so I only keep what I love. While I was pregnant I let myself keep whatever made me look and feel great. I wasn't buying as much from other stores at the time so if something worked from my fix, I kept it. 

I can't say enough good things about my experience with Stitch Fix while pregnant. That's not saying every item and every fix was perfect- but I am saying it was a great service for me. I loved the clothes I got from my fixes and I'd recommend it to all of my pregnant friends. 

**This is not a sponsored post. I am an affiliate for Stitch Fix so I do get credit when someone signs up under my link, but this post and my opinions are all my own. I really just love Stitch Fix!


Lace it Up

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COAT- Arcteryx // TEE- Nordstrom // JEANS- Articles of Society // SHOES- Old Navy // SUNNIES- Ray Ban // EARRINGS- N&S Silver Shell
PC- Sarah Sweeney
The weather is teasing us a bit here in KC right now with some days feeling more like Spring than others. I don't mind though because I'll take the feeling of progress. Preview days of warm weather are good enough to remind me to enjoy my jackets and layers for a few more weeks. I'm not in any hurry for the heat, so Spring can takes it's time. 

One of the big shoe trends this Spring and Summer is lace up flats and sandals. They are everywhere and they won't be going away any time soon. If you plan on buying some new sandals or some new flats  this Spring, consider something with laces and ankle ties. Now is the best time to jump on this trend so that you can get some good wear out of then. And honestly nothing updates your basics like an on-trend shoe! My yellow ones are sold out right now, but I'm sharing more options I love below!



Four Kids is Kicking My Butt

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You'll have to excuse the title, but that is the repeating thought going through my head this week. We've had colds at our house and unfortunately Baker got one too. The poor guy has been stuffy and runny and coughy and wants to be held all of the time. And thankfully he is feeling better today- finally. BUT this is what my house has looked like all week. I've been walking around, holding a baby, watching my other kids burn the house to the ground. Kidding, sort of. 

I said to Soren, "Why does God make us this way? Why do women crave order and cleanliness and organization and pretty things?!? But we also love babies and kids and those two things cannot coexist together! We're just doomed for frustration!!!"

And then I handed him the baby and put on my running shoes and headphones and left the house. I got out in the sunlight and got my heart beating and had a second to think. Alone. Oh, how I've missed running! Who knew that it could feel so good to do something you aren't in shape to do? 

And I got my answer. 

I was given that hope for perfect, orderly, pretty things because they are Godly. God is perfect and He wants us to have those things. But He also made me to be a mother and He wants me to raise messy little things and that means living in a mess. Humbly. 

I learned that He wants me to lean on Him all day long, even when I have so many blessings and so many good things, He needs me to need Him. And its true. If I had my house in order and healthy kids and things stayed clean and orderly and I was on time places- I'm not sure I would feel a need to pray all day long. But I really, really, really do need His help to accept the mess and be happy in it. 

I am happy. I have an awesome life. But I get frustrated and caught up in the little things and have bummer days just like the rest of the world. And I am learning to be grateful for those days because they keep me close to the One who is helping me become someone better. 
 

President's Day Sales

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TUNIC- Lush // JEANS- Articles of Society // BOOTS- Frye // HAT- Nordstrom // EARRINGS- N&S Signature Silver large // WATCH- Daniel Wellington
PC- Sarah Sweeney

Happy President's Day! I hope you are enjoying your day off and maybe even getting some nice weather! I've been shopping the online sales this weekend so I thought I'd give you a heads up of great pieces I've grabbed or want to grab. See my favorites below!

GAP- 40% off your purchase with code LONGWKND (including sale!) I grabbed some Easter clothes for my boys and a few other kids' items on sale. 


OLD NAVY- 30% off your order (no code needed) I grabbed a few more things for the kids and some new Spring items for me. LOVE this dress and this sweater as well!


H&M- Free shipping on orders over $50 with code 3326. There are some great items on sale here, and then a lot of cute Spring items for great prices in general.


Nordstrom- Winter clearance sale. A few of my favorite things are on sale.




Sunday Style- Baker's Blessing

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 BLOUSE- Nordstrom (on sale!) // SKIRT- J Crew Factory (similar color, same style) // BOOTS- H&M // EARRINGS- N&S Glossy Black Accent large // CUFF- N&S // SUNNIES- Ray Ban 

Last Sunday we finally took the opportunity to bless Baker. In our church after a baby is born we give them a blessing in front of the congregation, typically when they are 1-2 months old. They are officially given a name and we ask God to bless the baby as he grows and develops in this life. It's a special day and Baker's was no different. My parents and siblings live in town so they were able to come to the blessing. Then they came over to the house after church for dinner and cake. It was pretty low key, but it was a still a great way to celebrate our newest little babe. We sure can't imagine life without our little Baker Paul Nickels! 

Nickel and Suede Store BEFORE

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This is really an exciting time for Nickel & Suede. I find myself pinching myself left and right at all of the blessings that we are experiencing in the growth of our business. It's not without growing pains and chaos, but it's still amazing to see God's plan unfold for us. I try not to blog about our business too much over here, but it really is a huge part of our family's life so sometimes the I just have to share.

This Spring we are moving all of our business operations out of our home and into a bigger and dedicated space. We are also opening a small storefront. Its been in the works for months, but we have finally nailed down plans and things are moving off paper and into real life. The store will be on the historic square in my hometown, only five minutes from our house. It couldn't be a better location commute wise, not to mention being in a place that is near and dear to my heart. I grew up walking past this building on the way home from Junior High , drawing chalk art on its sidewalk in high school for Spring Festival on the Square, and was even in the Homecoming parade that passes right past these doors. To say the Square has been a part of my life for years would be an understatement!

I wanted some photos of the space before all of the renovations start and I'm sharing those with you today.


This walkway is our front entrance. These doors are actually all being replaced, but where you see the first set of doors will be our store and the next two sets of doors will be our shipping and manufacturing offices. (Picture big awnings, exposed brick and N&S signage everywhere!)


This is a view into what will be our store. It won't go as far back as you see. And we will be keeping the exposed beams overhead.


The store will connect to this space which will be for shipping and product assembly.


And this space is what you can see through the doorway above. This will be our manufacturing area will all of our tools, leather and other materials.




We've been fortunate enough to work with the best people on this project. We can't say enough good things about the talented team we've had working with us.




Upstairs we are also remodeling part of the building for offices. I'm really excited about this area! Soren will have his own office which he desperately needs! We're putting in a small nursery and the whole area near the windows will be a great big photography studio/meeting room for us. We're putting in two more huge windows than you see here and as you can tell, we'll have amazing lighting!



This is where Soren's office will be. I wish we could keep the mint, but we will be keeping all of the exposed brick.


It's such an amazing thing to see plans come to life. I can't think of better bones for our new space and I'm on pins and needles waiting to see more of the project shape up. Thanks for all of the love and support and for bearing with me as I share something that is so dear to us. I'm sure I'll be sharing more updates here on the blog, but if you want to follow along on the journey I've started a dedicated Instagram account just for the store- @nickelandsuedekc.