That awkward moment when you actually WANT a baby..? The interesting shift from prevention to procreation.

advice, Baby, fertility, guide, How-to, Lifestyle, wedding

AHHHH…. we are getting super personal and vulnerable today my friends…. so here goes.

Let’s cut right to it.

Most of us spend the majority of our young lives doing all that we can to prevent pregnancy.

And then, all of a sudden, like a freight train coming to a screeching halt…one finds themselves in a position where the prospect of creating a miniature version of themselves…

becomes desirable. 

In my case, I met the love of my life, got married, and…. like the cliche playground song goes “first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage”…. 

For many of us, this moment is an especially strange feeling. Switching our mindset from preventing pregnancy to dreaming about it… is a trip, y’all. A 360 turn in every way possible.

Do we, personally, want a child this instant? 

No, nope, nah, nix, nay.

However, in the next year or two, we would love to be parents. More than anything else in the world, to be quite frank. 

So here is the rub…

Because most of us have solely focused on avoiding  pregnancy for the majority of our lives, many of us (myself included) don’t know much about fertility and actually  becoming pregnant/maintaining a healthy pregnancy. 

Therefore, a lack of knowledge regarding the prospect of having children, elicits crazy fears within. Concerns you never knew you had… until BOOM…you’re there…

Some of them include:

  • What if I can’t get pregnant?

  • What if we miscarry?

  • What if my child or pregnancy has major complications?

  • What if I face post-partum depression?

  • How old is ‘too old’ to get pregnant?

The list goes on, and if you have been in this situation… you can relate.

But what if I told you there was something you could do, to alleviate aforementioned anxiety…? 

Because… there is.

Which has inspired me to share what I have done to take charge of my fertility, health, and mental well being…. 

(Please note: I am NOT A DOCTOR, and am not qualified to give medical advice. This post is simply sharing my personal experiences thus far. Also, I am under the care of a physician) 

1. Modern Fertility– an at home fertility test, for any woman.

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Aka God’s gift to empowered females everywhere.  This is an at-home blood test of dreams. The best part? Even if you do not want kids now, but maybe want them in 10 years… or just want to know more about your body…it is the perfect way of figuring our your options…and a realistic  baby-makin’ timeline. 

Knowledge is power, ladies. Take charge of your fertility, and know where you stand.

So how does the test work?

Simple. Everything is provided in a small box with easy to follow instructions. It is literally this convenient….

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After mailing in your sample, the turn around time is insanely speedy (like one week!).  A result link is sent directly to your inbox, when the processing is complete. I should add, Modern Fertility has extraordinarily helpful customer service, should you need assistance. 

Modern fertility provides a comprehensive amount of physician-reviewed information. I wanted to share my personal results, and these are only a portion of them.

 I was so nervous to view my results… not going to lie. BUT they calmly reassured me, this test is only a baseline. The perfect starting place in understanding what is going on inside. I found out that my testosterone level was the only hormone out of  ‘normal’ range, which I will be discussing with my doctor. Everything else was right where it should be, YEY!! 

After getting the results, a free call with a fertility nurse can be scheduled to better understand your next steps. How cool is that?!

The kit retails at $199.00 and is completely worth it, especially those of us who do not have great insurance. If I were to to these tests in office, it would be hundreds of dollars. My doctor actually recommended Modern Fertility to me.

Keeping this in mind, the folks at Modern Fertility have been so generous to offer my readers $10.00 off!  By clicking here or on any of the pictures in this post, you can get your kit for $189.00!

Get one, girl.

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2. PreMama Wellness Supplements

Another way I am preparing my body for the marathon, that is pregnancy, is through the use of PreMama supplements.5

(Feel free to use my code: KATIEW15 for 15% off your order)

If you are thinking about pregnancy, taking a good prenatal vitamin at least 3 months before trying to conceive is suggested. PreMama’s is the perfect option. It comes in a capsule or gummy form.

They also have a system of supplements for women which can be used before, during, and after pregnancy. I am currently using the ‘birth control cleanse’ supplement. I will then transition into the step 2 ‘conceive’ supplement, when we are ready.

When I am pregnant (eventually) I will use the ‘carry’, followed by the ‘care’ supplements after giving birth. They have pre-mamas and mama’s alike – totally covered!

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Because teamwork makes the dream work… especially when it comes to reproduction, PreMama has future Dads covered too. Get ya’ man on some baby makin’ supplements, gals.

Bonus: This product could also double as a *hint, hint I’m ready to talk about having a baby* gift under the tree this year… 😉

Just sayin’…

Well friends, there you have it. Our honest and personal pre-pregnancy journey thus far … I do feel highly vulnerable writing about this chapter of our lives. There are countless unknowns which lie ahead.

But, I’m glad I did.

This blog has always been about ‘being real’, and I’ll never skimp on that.

I truly hope this post reaches someone who may be looking for answers, or is feeling unsure of how to take charge of their reproductive health. 

Thanks for tuning in!

 

An Amazon Prime Haul. 10 items you need right now.

guide, haul, holiday, Lifestyle, shopping

Greetings fellow earthlings,

In case you missed it- last week I wrote a post sharing some of my current Amazon Prime favorites. Let’s just say it was well received…. 

It seems that many of you also share an affinity for Amazon Prime shopping! I was so happy to hear that readers purchased some of the items I had suggested, and loved them as much as I do.

SOOOO per your requests, here are 10 more of my favorite Amazon Prime items!!

I apologize in advance if you become the child below while reading the post… 😉 Happy shopping…

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(**pricing and availability of items listed may change at any time, this is not a sponsored post**)

1. There is nothing I love more, than being warm and cozy when it is chilly outdoors. This adorable pom-pom hat comes in 15 colors (I own it in 3…) and at $11.99– it’s a must. 

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2. Once again- I’ll spring for anything with a V-Neck. This sweater is no exception. It looks perfect with high wasted jeans. Be warned, however, it runs small so I would size up. Also…if you do not have high wasted jeans (keep readin’- I got you) know that this would be a crop top. It is $25.99 and comes in 2 colors.

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3. If you read my last Amazon post, you’ll know that I like to rock an over the knee boot. The pair I featured last week had a heel, whereas this boot is flatter. I wanted to share this one, as it is comfortable and something that could be worn daily. They are only $28.99 and come in 9 shades!!

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4. This. quilted. 1/4 zip thooooo. What a beaut! Also, it has elbow patches on the back which are so fun. It comes in 4 colors and is $24.99!

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5. This top is one of my all time favorites, truly. It looks good with anything (leggings, jeans, pajamas- you get it). And some days you just need something flowy to make you feel confident- this is the top. $20.99 and comes in 5 colors!

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6. Eeeekkkk how rad is this poncho? It is reversible and comes in 6 colors (which is really 12 because they reverse, duh). I was shocked by how warm it actually is. It is pretty with jeans and boots-it would also look great belted! $35.92

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7. The perfect distressed denim… only $24.90, and comes in a staggering 34 different washes!!

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8. I am obsessed with this fun little jacket- so cozy. It is $19.00 and comes in 4 colors. I will warn you, however, this item (for some reason) fluctuates between being an ‘amazon prime’ item and just an amazon item with free shipping. I am not sure why this is, and cost-wise it does not matter. Just know that it may take a bit longer to arrive if it is not listed as an ‘amazon prime’ item. 

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9. Friendssss, let me tell you…I am not above purchasing a good knock off. I love the Gucci belts that I see all over Instagram… but for $350+ (for the real real) it ain’t happenin’ for me. I stumbled upon this beauty, and for $22.99, it is an awesome dupe! It comes in 4 colors.

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10. Seriously… you need these Steve Madden slides NOW. My eyeballs fell out when I saw that they are only $29.99, at the moment. When I purchased them back in September they were over $50!!! They come in 4 colors, but the blush is my favorite.

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***BONUS tip: If you do purchase the shoes…they look perfect with these no show socks. These footies have a sticky pad at the heel and are the only  low socks I have ever worn that don’t slide off!  They are $8.19 for 6 pairs.


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So there you have it. Another haul in the books.

I hope you enjoy these items, if you choose to purchase any of them. I am planning on doing these amazon hauls pretty regularly….stay tuned until next week.

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A Weekend in Chicago. Where to stay, what to eat, what to see.

advice, chicago, Dinner, eats, food, guide, Lifestyle, travel

Hi friends,

This past weekend we went to Chicago- and had an absolute blast! Here is a recap of our getaway, and roundup of some of our favorite eats and things to do in the Windy City.

10 Stylish Fall & Winter Amazon Prime Finds

advice, beauty, guide, Halloween, haul, holiday, How-to, Lifestyle

Hello & Happy Halloween!

Sadly, I am a bit under the weather this holiday 🙁 … So, instead of celebrating, I decided to write this post for y’all! (& live vicariously through everyone else of course…)

Let’s cut to the chase.

I have an Amazon prime sickness obsession.  My dedication is real. If shopping on Amazon were a sport…ya girl here- would win. I am not sure that this is something I should be bragging about…but

here we are. 

As I mentioned previously…I have been sick lately. So, I do not have pictures of myself wearing these items (because I have not been out of bed in weeks, it seems…) I do, however, own everything featured in today’s post, and can vouch personally for all the items. They are fire, my friends, fire. 

I should note, this is not a sponsored post (though I wish it were,….*hint, hint, Amazon*…) & all of these recommended items are simply things that I love.

Without further ado…. 

1. Let’s start off with the softest, fuzziest, coat you have ever seen. Check out this beauty.  Yes, I give you permission to wear a bathrobe around while looking cute. An absolute win-win! Also, she’s only $29.99 and comes in 6 colors.

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2.  UMMMM, how freaking fun is this cute little swing dress?! It comes in 7 colors & I want them all. I pair mine with tights or leggings and some tall riding boots. Adorbz & only $22.99!IMG_6501

3. I have always been afraid of the ‘thigh high boot’ trend. I liked the look, but didn’t think I could pull it off. I have muscular calves (thank you Peloton cycling classes) and teeny little feet. This becomes a nightmare when purchasing boots. If I order my typical size 6 shoe…the calf is usually too snug. But, let me tell you- these boots are the exception! They are a perfect fit and a great addition to any outfit. I love pairing them with distressed jeans and a cozy sweater. These boots are the most expensive item in this post, ringing in at $45.00. They come in three colors and I can’t recommend them enough (especially to any thiccc calved queens out there)! It’s Halloween after all, so…TREAT YO’ SELF, sis.

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4.Speaking of cozy sweaters– this one is a must! I love anything with a V-Neck, and the detail on this one is perfection. Snag you one for $25.90. Also, if green isn’t your cup o’ tea- it comes in 5 colors!

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5.Once again- I am late to the whole ‘bralette’ thing. Always loving the look- but never taking the plunge. I absolutely love this one and wear it under any off the shoulder top. A small amount of the applique peeks out when wearing something off the shoulder and it is the perfect amount of detail. Also at only $12.99, you can’t go wrong.

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6. YOU GUYS…I wear this bootie WAY too often….it is a perfect slide-on-and-go item. Not only this shoe comfy- she pretty much matches with anything you could throw on. $35.99 and comes in 5 colors.

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7. How pretty are these little silk scarves? I have been loving these little guys for multiple reasons. In the morning- 99% of the time- I throw my hair up into a messy bun or sock bun. Lately- I will tie one of these around the bun and-voila! Instantly elevated.  They also look fun when tied onto a purse or any bag! $9.99 for 6 of these silky sweeties!

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8. This simple layered necklace is so fun! I love inexpensive jewelry because A. I seem to lose everything and B. I am able to have more options this way!!  This necklace is only $9.99.

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9. This backpack is my current obsession. For anyone who travels OR is tired of carrying a purse around 24/7, this bag is for you. For $24.99 it is a steal & comes in 6 colors! Channel those Dora the Explorer vibes, baby.

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10. Blanket scarf. Need I say more? Such a fall & winter essential. This one is $12.99 and comes in 9 colors!!

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Well…. there you have it, my 10 amazon prime faves, at the moment. If you like this post, please let me know. I have NUMEROUS amazon faves and can start to do these hauls more regularly, if desired…

Happy Halloween…and happy shopping. Click-click-click away, my loves…. 😉

katie writes sig

#Adulting: Your Halloween Dinner Party, Planned. A complete guide.

advice, Dinner, eats, food, guide, Halloween, holiday, How-to, Lifestyle, party

Hello, hello. 

As Halloween approaches, I sit at my computer and reminisce on many fond memories of this holiday. 

Quick back story…

Growing up- Halloween was something I always looked forward to. Every year we would go over to my cousins house, have sloppy joe’s (random, I know), dress up, trick or treatreturn to dump out & sort our candy, and (if we begged hard enough)…end the evening with a sleep over.

It was the best. Pure childhood bliss. (& yes, I am the frumpy pumpkin) 

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Fast forward to adulthood, and we have carried on the tradition in the best way that we can. We still get together, dress up, have sloppy joes, laugh, and enjoy each others company. We have the best family, fo’ real.  (& BTW I have no idea how the sloppy joe thing started, …but there is no end in sight)

Unfortunately, this year, we are unable to get together. But- it got me thinking. I wanted to share some of the fun ideas that I found for Halloween 2018. In hopes that it will help anyone throwing a Halloween party, not knowing where to begin.

I mean, as long as you have wine- you’re probably set for a good gathering. BUT, if you’re as extra as I am when throwing a party- you will appreciate this post. It’s all about the details- and I’ve got ya covered. 

***Disclaimer: all suggestions below are NOT my property or things that I have photographed myself. This post is simply a roundup of awesome ideas that I have cherry picked for y’all. 😉 All photos have direct links to the creators websites. Happy Halloweening. 

Pre-party musts:

Step 1. Send a fun invite.

Seriously, who doesn’t love to get mail (especially when it’s not a bill) ? Treat your guests to a snail-mail invite. This way, they will be looking forward to the party in advance- and most importantly- not forget about it. There is nothing worse than planning a party, accounting for guests, and having them not show up or … ‘forget’ about your event… save yourself the trouble and send a dang invite. Bases covered.

I find that downloading a template off of etsy and printing it out at home, or sending it to office depot for printing, works best. 

Here is one that I love:

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Appetizers:

I have learned the hard way…don’t overdo the appetizers when hosting a dinner party. Stick to about 2-3 (max). Too many appetizers result in extra food that does not typically fare well as leftovers. Stick to a few that are the bomb.com and you’re golden. Trust me. Soggy, sweaty cheese squares (you know what I am talking about)…is just plain GROSS the next day.

Speaking of soggy cheese, please do not think that I am cheese-bashing. As a proud Wisconsinite, I LOVE  cheese. In fact, my go-to party hosting hat trick is always a unique cheeseboard. So, to be clear, choosing cheese as an app is perfectly fine…and it will get consumed by your guests… IF you don’t have too many other things on the table. Just let the cheese shine, man. 

If I were throwing a Halloween party, I would choose one of these cheeseboards, and a ‘hot’ appetizer to go with it.  

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Now that you have picked out a killer cheeseboard (that Halloween pun thooo), here are a few ‘hot apps’ that would be complimentary. Once again, I would choose just one.

I mean…C’MON…do these get any cuter? YUM. Your guests will love these little jalapeno popper mummies.

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Also…this mummy pizza dip? Can’t go wrong. Who does not like pizza? I would serve this with french bread toasts & crackers too. Voila! Delish.

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Drinks:

I like to have both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages when hosting a party. I have found, that the dollar store sells plastic baskets which are perfect for holding drinks. Simply fill with ice, and you’re set. basketIn these baskets, I would stock coke, diet coke, sprite, waters, one white wine, one red wine, and beer.

Bonus find: For your guests convenience, snag a spooky wine spout…they are just one amazon prime click away…. (and under $20!)

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Where were we? Ah yes, ALCOHOL.

Here are two Halloween cocktails that look amazing, I would choose just one to prepare for my guests:

How sexy is this blackberry bevvy? O.M.G. get in my belly.

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It is hard to go wrong with sangria. This one is is WIN.


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Salad:

All of the goodies in this fall cobb salad do not go unnoticed. Personally, I would use this recipe – sans chicken. If I were to serve this salad as a main dish I would keep the chicken. BUT as a starter, too much protein would leave guests full before dinner even began.


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Mains: 

Whenever I get an excuse to make a large pan of ooey-gooey goodness, ya girl is going to take it. This decadent pumpkin mac and cheese is perfect for a chilly Halloween night in- with friends!

(I would make the mac and choose one sandwich to go along with it.)

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So, clearly I am going to include a sloppy joe recipe (this one is almost exactly the way my mom makes it). Take it or leave it…but all I’m sayin’… is that it’s an unexpected, hearty, crowd-pleaser. Try it, you won’t be disappointed. 

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However, if you’re uncomfortable serving sloppy joes at an adults-only party, I get it. Another great option would be these caramelized baked ham sandwiches. If you have never had these (or a similar rendition), my condolences. My mouth is actually watering….

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Desserts:

(I would select just one to prepare)

How delicious does this chocolate spider trifle look? Most people LOVE chocolate…this is a great make-ahead dessert.

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Who else is dying over this red velvet cake? (another terrible pun, I know) Also, the steak knife in the middle is perfect. 

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Decor:

Ahhhh, yes. My favorite part of throwing a party: the decor!

Here is the table setting that I would use for a Halloween gathering. I have also linked similar items (all amazon prime, duh) so that you can recreate this look, if you so choose. 

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I am LOVING this dark, sultry tablescape. I find it spooky, yet elegant. It has me feelin’ some type-a way, that’s for sure. The image below has a direct link to crate and barrel. They have some awesome sales going on right now, however, some items are still pricey. 

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Here are some affordable dupes for items pictured above:

Get that magical look- for less!!

Simple Black tablecloth ($13.99):

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Black cloth napkins ($11.49 for 12):

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Black Candlestick Holder ($15.29 for 4):71PacwN6YVL._SL1500_

Tall Black Candlestick Holder ($20.98 for 2):

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Black Candles ($13.99 for 12): (deep purple, burgundy, or white would look nice too)

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Candle Centerpiece Idea ($12.64):

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White ceramic plates ($18.83 for a set of 6):

(most people have simple dinner plates at home- which is what I would use- if you do not, here is a good option)  

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Placecard Template ($3.95 instant download): I would use these for guests names at the table & to label the buffet area.

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Placecard Holders ($10.95 for 12):

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Grocery store items: I would pick up red roses  and greens at the grocery store, and place one (as pictured) on each place setting. I would also get a few gourds (once again, as pictured) to spread around the table. This is your pop of color against all of the black. 

Pro tip: find a ‘spooky Halloween’ playlist on spotify, youtube, or pandora and play it during your party!

One (actually cool) Party Game:

Trivia is always a blast. Print out this free game and enjoy some laughs (and probably some shouting) with your friends. 

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So there you have it, an entire Halloween party, planned. Now get shopping, decorating, & cooking… there is fun to be had!

Wishing you all,…. the happiest of Halloweens

katie writes sig