The Mapmaker’s Children: Small Town Living

This post was inspired by The Mapmaker’s Children by Sarah McCoy, a novel about two women are connected by an Underground Railroad doll. Join From Left to Write on May 19th as we discuss The Mapmaker’s Children. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

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There are very few books that I’ve read for the book club that I haven’t liked, but this book stands out as one of my favorites! I love how the book weaves bits and pieces of history with two fictional storylines, it makes you believe that the whole novel could have happened.

I also feel like I could have taken this non-traditional review in a myriad of directions, but I feel like I’ve talked about a few of them a lot (miscarriage) or recently (teaching history).  It would be easy for me to take one of those topics, so let’s go with something that I haven’t really talked about. Small Town Living vs. Suburban Life.

I grew up in a very small town, so small that my high school was made up of at least eight different towns and our graduating class was still in the 200’s.

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Hello Vermont

As soon as I graduated high school I went to a small private college in northern Vermont, it wasn’t what I was looking for. I ended up at a college in Worcester, MA, maybe not the best city, but it was certainly more entertaining than anywhere in Vermont. After graduation Nick and I ended up in Somerville, MA, just outside Boston. Even though we moved around a bit in that area, we eventually ended up in a suburb 15 minutes north of the city.

I don’t have any qualms with small town living, there are tons of perks. I never needed to lock my car doors, I didn’t think twice about working third shift at a convenience store (although maybe that was a bit naive), and I was pretty trusting of the majority of people. BUT everyone knew your shit, and I mean everyone. Nothing was a private matter, and people would gossip endlessly.

Obviously, suburban or city life can be a bit more intimidating. The closer you are to an urban area the more likely there is for dangerous things to happen near your home or town. I believe you can find pockets of  communities that mimic small town life. Neighborhoods with lots of kids, school communities, etc… I also find that people aren’t always poking in your private business and spreading that gossip around, at least that’s been my experience.

I don’t hate small town life, it molded me into part of the person I am, I do know that I could never go back to that type of living.

Are you a small town lifer or do you prefer to be near an urban center?

For Two Fitness Mother’s Day Giveaway!

 I am thrilled to partner with For Two Fitness for an amazing post-Mother’s Day giveaway. I have been wearing For Two Fitness apparel throughout my pregnancy with B2 and they quickly have become some of my favorite maternity fitness pieces. For Two Fitness is running a phenomenal giveaway for the new mom or mom-to-be. Read the details below and make sure to follow on social media! 

This year, we are celebrating Mother’s Day all week! We are so thankful to YOU — our community, customers, friends, moms and moms-to-be. To express our thanks, we are hosting a huge giveaway this week in partnership with some amazing brands and our ambassadors. The Grand Prize is valued at more than $1000.  We have phenomenal prizes, from Joovy, Garmin, Feetures, Sara Haley and us, For Two Fitness – all facets of your fit mom lifestyle are in this prize pack!

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Prizes are brought to you by our wonderful brand partners, sponsoring ambassadors and of course, us here at For Two Fitness. Here are more details about the grand prize – everything you see below:

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Grand Prize Giveaway items:

 

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 This contest runs from Monday, May 11th through midnight on Friday, May 15th.  Please follow all of our contest co-hosts on Instagram:

 

 ForTwoFitness

 

Thanks for celebrating Mother’s Week with us!  Good Luck!!

 

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Spinster: Women Supporting Women

This post was inspired by Spinster by Kate Bolick, who explores singledom with famous women who fashioned life on their own terms. Join From Left to Write on May 5th as we discuss Spinster. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

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From Left to Write is one of the best things I have ever found via blogging. It has opened many a door (erm or maybe a book) for me, but I have to fully admit with the end of B1’s first year in school, a pregnancy that has been rougher on me than I expected, and a tight turn around on three books for the book club, I just haven’t been able to finish the last one or this one. I know my posting has been sporadic at best, and I have no expectation that it will get better once B2 is here, but I am going to make an effort to write quality content when I can, thank you for sticking with me.

Now, back to the book post!

I’ll be the first to admit that I can’t really relate to the “spinster” title. Nick and I have been together since we were 20 and we’ve been married for most of that time. What I can relate to with this book is that women are expected to do certain “life moments” in a particular order, and they get questioned all the time, while men don’t.

Over time the mentality of society has changed, you don’t necessarily need to get married right out of college, and then have kids after that. There is much more acceptance for the woman who wants to travel and not settle down. Or the women who wants to focus on her career instead of having a family. While you will probably still have that relative that will ask you at the family get-together what you are doing with your life and when you are going to get married or have babies, etc… the general acceptance in society is there.

I have found however, at least in the north-east, that the woman who decides that she does in fact want to get married young and have babies young is judged. It’s as if she (or I) is being judged for not helping other women break ground in changing the ways society view women and what their roles should or shouldn’t be.

For me, I have friends that have married young, have had babies young, friends that never want to get married, friends that don’t want to have children, friends that want to travel the world before the settle down, friends that want to travel with their partner, friends that want to travel with their kids, etc…

This life would be pretty boring if we were all the same, I hope that someday women can just find it in their hearts to support the woman standing next to them, whether or not their lifestyle is one they would want.

Under Magnolia: Home Is What You Make It

This post was inspired by Under Magnolia by Frances Mayes, a memoir of her return to her roots in the South. Join From Left to Write on April 30th as we discuss Under Magnolia. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

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If I am being honest, I am having a hard time getting through this book, and I haven’t finished it yet. I haven’t read anything else she has written, but I love reading memoirs so I had high hopes.

I think one of the themes that I kept circling back to when I was thinking about what I was going to write about was the idea of “Home”.

I’ve only lived in a few places, but for many years, I never felt like I was “home”. Life was chaotic to say the least, then of course came college. I don’t know that anyone feels at home when they are in college. Moving from dorms, to a sorority house, to apartments, I never really felt settled in one place.

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After graduation, Nick was in a lease, and I ended up squeezing in his apartment for one extremely cramped and again chaotic month. Finally, Nick and I had our own place, but it wasn’t really ours, we were renters. Finally, we bought our condo. Along came B1, and we very quickly outgrew that space, and now we have been in our house for almost 3 years. Which is perfect for us and will be perfect when B2 comes along.

I’ve started to realize though, it’s not the physical home that makes it a home. It’s the people. That apartment that I crammed in with Nick and his 3 roommates? Not the ideal living space, but it has made for some of the most hilarious memories with some great friends.

Getting ready in that sorority house with my best girlfriends, having talks about life long into the night with those girls have made for lifelong friends.

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That roommate in a college dorm, is someone I will always treasure, and will also be a lifelong friend.

My husband and children, who have made me incredibly happy and proud, the best things to ever happen to me.

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B2 is in this picture too ;)

It’s not the building that makes the home, it’s the people in it.

My First Maternity Stitch Fix: April 2015

I still owe you all a Stitch Fix (<–referral link) review from October, but I cannot find the paper with the clothing information on it anywhere. Maybe once I finish cleaning my desk I will be able to get that out to you all.  After that last fix I found out I was pregnant and so I decided to put my fixes on hold. I wish I hadn’t since plenty of people received maternity items before it was made public that they were carrying those items. Oh well, you live and learn.

Because I was pregnant with B1 around the same time as B2 I thought that I would be fine with the clothes that I already owned, maybe buy a few tanks and t-shirts, but not much.  I was so wrong. I lost a lot of weight when I was pregnant with B1, and could wear workout clothes comfortably until week 30, and by that time I could wear maxi dresses and skirts, I bought one pair of maternity jeans, and maternity shorts, and of course tanks and t-shirts.

I was definitely a bit delusional thinking it would be the same, with B2 I didn’t lose as much weight, thankfully, and I am carrying her much lower than I carried him making even some workout clothes uncomfortable. I ended up purchasing some leggings (capri & ankle length) from Motherhood Maternity because they are cheap and comfortable. I also bought some t-shirts, tanks, and long-sleeved shirts at various places like Kohls & Target.

As soon as Stitch Fix mentioned they were carrying maternity & petite clothes I decided to give it try. I told the stylist exactly how far along I would be when the fix arrived. I said that I wanted layering pieces as we are transitioning into warmer weather, and I also mentioned that I have bridal and baby showers coming up and I wanted something to wear to those events. I mentioned no heavy winter types of items like jackets or heavy cardigans. So how’d we do?

First, I am very frustrated that I scheduled my fix for the earliest possible date (April 2nd) and as I checked the website it wasn’t even being put together as of April 1st. This is the second time this has happened to me, and considering the fact that the last time was 6-7 months ago is ridiculous. If they are having problems with fulfilling orders then they shouldn’t be accepting as many orders. I emailed customer service and received a rude email in response, telling me that the date a customer picks is the ideal date, but that they have 7 days to get the fix to the consumer. I combed through all the information online and I couldn’t find that specific information anywhere, not exactly the best customer service.

Now, on to the fix. When I read the card from the stylist the first thing I noticed was that they had zero options to send me in regards to my request for dresses and skirts. I don’t really understand that since they are everywhere during this time of year in the stores in MA. I do think that the stylist nailed my style in terms of colors and types of clothes though.

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Seriously love the packaging!

Romolo Connor Hammered Oval Link Necklace – $38

Romolo Connor Hammered Oval Link Necklace

I need to take necklaces off my okay to send list. I have only received one that I liked, but also this necklace is extremely heavy, and I think it is silly to send a long necklace to someone who will have an infant in a few months. If someone is breastfeeding, that necklace will only get in the way. Status: Returned

Rune Kile Maternity Ankle Zip Leggings – $58

Rune Kile Maternity Ankle Zip Leggings

When I pulled these out of the box, I was like crap, I wasn’t planning on buying any more pants, but I LOVE the look, and the fabric was super comfortable. Unfortunately they were too long. When I updated my style profile I also added myself to the petite selections, because I am very short. I pulled the maternity band of these pants all the way underneath my chest and they still bunched around my knee. Status: Returned

Loveappella Maternity Plumeria Mixed Material Maternity Top – $48

Loveappella Plumeria Mixed Material Maternity Top

knew as soon as I saw Leslie’s Maternity Fix this morning that this shirt was going to end up in my fix, mostly because I didn’t want it too. It reminded me of a shirt I got in my 6th Fix (that I didn’t end up purchasing), but in Leslie’s photo it looked extremely long in the back…

Loveappella Plumeria Mixed Material Maternity Top

Not the best photos, but I feel like it also looks long on me. I know this is a maternity shirt, but I want the items I keep to be able to transition well in to postpartum wear and maybe even long-term wear. It doesn’t look like a typical maternity shirt, so I think it could transition well, and it was extremely comfortable. My reservations are with the back of the shirt. Is it too long? Does it look stupid with my lack of height? Status: Undecided

Pink Martini Morset Textured Cardigan – $68

Pink Martini Morset Textured Cardigan

When I first pulled this cardigan out, I was like what am I? 65? This is an old lady cardigan.

Pink Martini Morset Textured Cardigan

Then I put it on. It was so soft and so comfortable. I am not sure how I feel about the 3/4 length sleeves. I have plenty of shirts with them, so I don’t hate them, but I don’t have more than one or two cardigans/sweaters with them. It is also not a maternity specific piece, so I can obviously wear this postpartum, especially paired with a maternity tank and jeans or leggings, I will look more put together than I probably will feel ha. I just don’t know if it is worth the price tag. Status: Undecided

Loveappella Maternity Gonna Key Hole Detail Maternity Top – $48

Loveappella Maternity Gonna Key Hole Detail Maternity Top

As soon as I pulled this top out of the box I was in love. The deep cobalt color. The faux leather trim, the key hole. I definitely thought it was a keeper.

Loveappella Maternity Gonna Key Hole Detail Maternity Top

When I put it on, I loved how it felt and looked, but I am not sure of the length. I have a decent belly to fill out the front and pull the length up, but I am worried that post-partum it will be more of a sexy dress than a nice fitted tank. Thoughts? Status: Undecided

I have no idea what to keep. If I keep all three items that I am on the fence about it would be silly to not keep everything as it would only be $10 more.

 

What Should I Keep?

 
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Why I Hate Blogging

Maybe hate is an excessive term, but I think a lot of bloggers can relate!

I have been blogging for over 4 years, it started as a hobby, at some point I started making a small amount of money and receiving products in exchange for reviews. I liked it, I felt like I gave real reviews, I shared when I wasn’t 100% happy with a race, product, or company, but I also shared when a company had an outstanding product, race, or customer service. As I got more involved with that part of the blogging world it seemed to be a lot to try to keep up with the blogging world, especially the fitness and healthy living blogs. I started taking less on, I basically stopped blogging regularly after my miscarriage, and really started taking inventory on the products I LOVE.

I find that a lot of bloggers, big or small, don’t have any company loyalty, they will blog for this apparel company one month and a month or two later rave about how another company has the best apparel…how am I supposed to believe either review. I’ve definitely reviewed different gyms, studios, shoes, etc… so I am not innocent of this either, but I do cast a side eye when I see the same blogger review multiple brands shoes over the course of a few months.

Those are of course the companies that I will continue to work with or will try to showcase on here. I don’t regret any of the reviews that I’ve done in the past, but I don’t want to feel any pressure to come up with these pinterest perfect images and to compete with someone who does this for a living. I don’t want to get burnt out again. I am finally back at a place where I am loving the posts I am putting out there, and I don’t want to move away from that.

I think another large part of why I got so burnt out on blogging is because of the expectation of how a HLB (healthy living blogger) acts or eats or works out. Maybe part of this is because of pregnancy hormones, ask Nick they are real right about now, but I think I would feel this way regardless. When I first started reading blogs (5-6 years ago) bloggers wrote real posts, ever link wasn’t an affiliate link, it didn’t seem to be nearly as shady, but maybe I was just naive.

When you are a HLB there is an expectation that you will be BEAST MODE all the time. You see the phrases “the family that sweats together, stays together”, #fitpregnancy, #noexcuses, I could go on.  I won’t lie, I love working out, it is a stress reliever for me, but when I read these blog posts about how so and so went a whole month without a rest day or an excuse, I kind of just roll my eyes, and then I think, is this such a great thing? Why is no one else questioning these types of behaviors?

Not all families or significant others can work out together. Their might be babysitting logistics, disabilities, you just might hate the same type of work out. I am 99% positive I could never get Nick to a barre or yoga class. We’ve done two races together, and have had a lot of family walks, but all of these things were for fun! I LOVE the alone time or girl time that I get when I go to class!

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I feel a lot of anger towards the posts that are all about how the best thing you can do when you are pregnant is to work out. I am not arguing that working out is bad, I have been working out regularly since I was cleared to do so, but that is not the only thing that is best for your body or baby. Eating a balanced diet, taking vitamins, seeing a medical professional that will monitor your progress, getting your home safe and ready to being your baby home, etc… those things are all just as important.

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I don’t however like feeling guilty because I choose sleep over a workout, or resting over a workout. In real life, so many people have been supportive of this pregnancy and my workout regime, especially the instructors and staff at Pure Barre. Then I look at social media and I am overwhelmed by all the posts and images of #FitMoms. On top of it all, these women are sharing exactly how much weight they have gained or lost in their pregnancy. I’ve been what some would call “lucky” because with both this pregnancy and when I was pregnant with B, I was so incredibly sick that I ended up losing weight in the first trimester and was able to gain a healthy amount as the pregnancy went on. Some women gain 50 pounds, that doesn’t mean they ate cookies and donuts the whole pregnancy. Again, I feel like it is weird that these women share their weight amounts each week they recap their pregnancy or post-baby recaps. I like reading about how these women get fit after pregnancy, it gives me ideas, but their weight doesn’t help anyone but them, it just doesn’t seem important or relevant.

Now, lets talk about food. Every recipe is a super food or will give you super powers or something like that… Baking beans in brownies will just make me want to eat 5 of them, I’d rather have one really decadent dessert than have a dessert that doesn’t satisfy my craving.

Birthday Dessert

I know we all talk about the 80/20 rule, but where do those black bean brownies fall? It seems like a grey area to me. It feels like a lot of these people aren’t actually eating 20% indulgently.

It would be easy for anyone to say, well stop reading these blogs, but some of them have content that I actually love, or blogs that I have been reading for years, and so it is hard to just turn that off. In the past year many blogs have definitely been taken off my feedly list, but these posts seem to be popping up even on my favorites.

I’d be remiss to end this post on such a sour note. There are many things I wish I could change about the blogging world, I am sure a lot of people wish they could, but there are also things that I would never change.

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I’ve met some of my closest friends via Twitter or this blog! There is a group of moms who all had babies around the same time and we all met via Twitter/Instagram, none of us live near each other, but we are able to laugh, vent, cry, share all via a private group. It has been so helpful just to say is your toddler doing this exact behavior or is mine just a little crazy lately?

I’ve been able to attend amazing events, and I am incredibly grateful for every single opportunity! Like I said, I will continue blogging, but it’s going to be more about things and items I love and are an important part of my life (with or without this blog). I also want to be able to be more engaging with those that read (and comment). I haven’t responded to comments in far too long, and actually plan on doing that soon. I am hoping removing the HL part of blogging part for myself allows me to be more me and less traditional blogger!

What is your favorite and least favorite part of blogging or reading blogs?

Dead Wake: Teachable Moments

This post was inspired by Dead Wake by Erik Larson, a thrilling account of Lusitania’s last voyage across the Atlantic Ocean and the U-boat that attacked it. Join From Left to Write on March 26th as we discuss Dead Wake. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

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If you aren’t familiar with my From Left to Write book club posts, we don’t write traditional reviews. We read the book and write a review about a topic that the book inspired in us. The third book club selection for March is a historical non-fiction book, I tend to read a lot of these types of books. Prior to B1 coming along I was a history teacher, mostly 8th graders, and I loved it. There is so much to learn and so many ways to make it fun, and this book definitely made me miss it.

I loved this book, Larson was able to weave not just the perspectives of the passengers of The Lusitania, the Captain of The Lusitania, the German U Boat captains, Woodrow Wilson, Room 40, etc… but also heavy historical information and a tragedy that helped bring The United States into World War I without making the book read like a text-book. I will say it wasn’t a short read, but definitely a worthwhile one.

The book was full of moments, where I would shake my head and think this tragedy could have been avoided not just once, but many times. Instead of using these moments and learning from them, the Cunard Line and Winston Churchill tried to blame the The Captain of the Lusitania for the tragedy. They wasted their time trying to pin blame instead of trying to solve the problem that caused the sinking of the Lusitania. Instead of trying to use the information from Room 40 to their advantage the war lasted longer than necessary and many innocent lives were lost.

I don’t want this to turn into a political post, however I feel like the world is still struggling with this. Many problems within countries and country vs. country have happened before and unfortunately could happen again. The teachable moments that we could all learn from, it seems that no one actually learns from.

Do you love learning about history or hate it?

The No More Excuses Diet: Controversy Sells More

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This post was inspired by The No More Excuses Diet by Maria Kang who shares her no excuses philosophy that motivated her to become more fit. Join From Left to Write on March 12th as we discuss The No More Excuses Diet. As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.

I remember the first time I saw Maria Kang’s photo on Facebook, posted by friends who are into fitness, posted by moms, posted by those whose careers are in the fitness and health field. If you went on any form of social media, I’m sure you saw the photo, and commentary. People who thought that it was a shaming moms who didn’t have six-pack abs, and those who agreed with her that no excuse is above your health and fitness.

The multiple times I have had to get back into the swing of things, when I first started living a healthy & active life and after my first pregnancy, I have appreciated the no BS attitude any fitness professional has had with me. This is what I need to make myself accountable and to make sure I succeed in whatever it is that I need to do to lose weight or kick the unhealthy habits I was partaking in. Logging my food, including the junk and treats, making a training schedule and following it. Having someone question when I don’t follow through with my plan, writing this blog and showing you all what I have or haven’t done. These are the things that keep me accountable.

However, I don’t believe that no excuses and an all or nothing attitude are beneficial for those who are starting out on the journey to healthy living. I have excuses just like everyone else, and I won’t hide the fact that they are excuses, but I also won’t feel bad for them either.

We don’t have any family nearby, if I want to get a workout in it has to be first thing in the morning, or for now the two times B is in school during the week. If it doesn’t happen then, then it won’t happen, end of story. Some times I wake up 5 times in the night and getting the extra 2 hours of sleep will make me a better mom that day then going to the gym, and sometimes it is the opposite. Nick’s disability also adds a layer of difficulty to things, not a complaint, but something I need to acknowledge. Leaving a 4-year-old and an infant with him alone just won’t be happening for a while, not an excuse, that is LIFE. Can I go for walks and try to get at-home workouts in? Of course. Will it be the same as getting my butt handed to me in a sweat-drenching workout at a local studio? No, and I don’t expect it to.

Maria Kang knew exactly what she was doing when she posted that photo, she stirred up controversy in the mom and fitness world. Controversy sells, hard work and honesty? Not so much. I am not saying that she hasn’t worked hard, she has. Her book is proof of that, and it is definitely tool I will be utilizing post-baby. Would she have gotten a book deal if she hadn’t posted that controversial photo? I don’t believe so. It reminds me of the saying “any PR is good PR”. The photo was posted, there was a ton of conversation regarding it, both good and bad. Then she received a book deal and her business picked up even more.

I think Maria Kang has a great approach to fitness and healthy living, she doesn’t belive in the all or nothing diet, fad diets,etc… she has a natural approach to dealing with treats and indulgences. Not something the average person would get from her initial photo.

What do you think? Does a controversial spark sell more than straightforward honesty?

Favorite Maternity Workout Clothes & For Two Fitness Discount Code

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During my pregnancy with B I was constantly sick for the first 5 months, I was also commuting an hour each way for work, and had just finished my gym membership so working out wasn’t really happening. I lived in workout clothes when I wasn’t at work and I was able to wear regular pants until about 30 weeks. This pregnancy has been a completely different ball game, I was in maternity clothes much earlier, and I have been trying to be as active as possible.

In my miscarried pregnancy I had become an ambassador for For Two Fitness, obviously before I announced the pregnancy or ambassadorship I had the miscarriage. I kept in touch with the women at For Two Fitness and once I was off bed rest and in to the second trimester I contacted them about becoming an ambassador again. Luckily, they still wanted to work together!

Obviously, my entire wardrobe isn’t For Two Fitness maternity wear, and since this is most likely our last baby I couldn’t justify buying TONS of new clothes, so I am including the few items I rotate through very frequently.

GapAthleta

My favorite every day workout tight and capri are Athleta’s Chatarunga pant. I was apprehensive since there were zero reviews for any of the Athleta maternity pants. I decided to bite the bullet and purchase the High Belly Chatarunga Capri, and they are just as comfortable as the non-maternity ones!

A few months ago I went shopping with a fellow pregnant fan and we went to one of the few Gap stores that actually has a maternity section and I purchased the  GapFit Breathe Mesh Racerback, it was on super sale and I ended up buying it for $8. It is kind of baggy currently but I know I will grow into it and I won’t have to worry about it not covering my belly.

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I have a pair of capris, preemptively purchased in the beginning of my last pregnancy and I live in them at home, but because it has been so cold with so much snow I haven’t really worn them out to the gym. My favorite For Two Fitness capris are hands down the Ultimate Micro-Plush Fitness Capri. I know I can wear them all the way through this pregnancy and after! The material isn’t heavy or too spandex heavy, it is a nice balance of the two.

I of course love the fun tanks that have sayings, though if that’s not your thing they have plain racerback tanks as well. Since I have been on a running ban, the Running for Two tank I had previously bought isn’t exactly ideal, but I love that there are ones that are more versatile. My favorites are the Toning for Two, Training for Two, and Sweating for Two! I love how soft the tanks are, I’ve had some problems with maternity tanks in the past. Sometimes after I wash them they start to feel itchy or just generally uncomfortable. This is not the case with these tanks, I’ve washed mine at least once a week and they are still as soft as ever! I know that sometimes it seems silly to buy something like this when you don’t know (or do know) if you are going to get pregnant again, but it is so important to get well-fitting maternity clothing, at least a few essential pieces that you can get a lot of wear out of, and I can attest that you don’t want to spend your entire workout adjusting an ill-fitting top or pair of pants.

I don’t ever wear t-shirts to work out so I can’t speak to the comfort of those, but I plan on purchasing a long-sleeved tee and I will let you all know my thoughts as soon as I get it! Now you can get some great For Two Fitness gear as well and use the code CUPCAKEKELLYS for 30% off! This code is only valid for 30 days, it ends 04/06/2015, so make sure you grab the gear you want now!

What is your favorite piece of maternity workout gear?

The Second Trimester and Gender Reveal!

I am more than a few weeks into the second trimester, and I truly feel like this pregnancy is flying! I didn’t announce here, but some of you may have seen on Instagram

BABYGIRLB

We are having a GIRL! I am so incredibly excited!! I would’ve been happy regardless, but it will be nice to have a little girl and a little boy in our house! Also, the addiction to buying girl clothes is real. I have had to put my self on clothes buying ban until she is born.

This pregnancy has been vastly different from what I remember with B1. I definitely felt like by the second trimester the exhaustion wasn’t as bad as it was in the first, but I guess I wasn’t chasing after a 3-year-old.

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Typical dinner shenanigans

I had a lot of sciatic pain with B1, and it has been touch and go this pregnancy, but of course I have had other aches and pains and almost fainted in Whole Foods the other morning. That was scary, but apparently also completely normal. From what my doctor told me standing still for an extended amount of time (in the shower, long church services, a long deli line…) can cause your BP to drop and leave you feeling faint, it was scary, but now I know how to make sure that never happens again.

I also have felt the second trimester hunger kick in. When I grocery shop I don’t vary from my usual stuff, but as soon as I get hungry nothing I have prepared sounds good. I have been eating a lot of egg sandwiches, homemade chicken salad, chicken sausage, and salad. I really really wish it was watermelon season, because I could probably eat an entire one every day and be very happy.

PureBarreBaby

My new favorite sticky socks! I am back at Pure Barre regularly. It’s been great to see everyone and the staff has been so helpful with modifications, as I have continued to grow, some things that felt fine even a week ago feel uncomfortable now so it is nice to have someone show me other exercises that work with what the rest of the class is doing.

Even though she is due the same month as B the maternity clothing is completely different. I lost 20 pounds due to severe sickness with B so I was in regular clothes, mostly workout clothes if we are being honest, until week 30. So most of my maternity clothes are dresses and shorts and tank tops, I had a few cardigans and one pair of maternity jeans, and that was it for maternity clothes. I am going to write another post on what I’ve been wearing in every day and for workouts, but it has been crazy how different my body is this pregnancy. I am carrying baby girl MUCH lower than I carried B, and I started showing much earlier this pregnancy.

I also started feeling kicks much earlier this pregnancy, and I LOVE it. Somedays it feels like she is stomping on my bladder, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Were your pregnancies very different or similar?