Why I Can’t Let Chores Wait

Clean white kitchen with open shelves, full spring blooms! Talking keeping a clean house when you have babies and toddlers on the blog today. Outer order, inner calm! Keeping a clean home with little kids helps my sanity and postpartum anxiety. You don't have to let the chores wait!
Blooms by Leah Erickson Floral after Inez’s baby shower

One of the most popular pieces of advice for postpartum moms is to let their house go. We’ve all heard it. That you should be snuggling your baby, not doing the dishes! Well, I can’t let it go, I’ve tried and I can’t. Also, I don’t know who they think is going to come do your dishes, but okay. Recently, we did a newborn photoshoot in our home. The wonderful photographer, Chelsea Macor, blogged about our session, asking how it was possible that our home was so spotless. Afterall, we have a one month old and a not yet two year old! It made me realize that I get that question a lot. A lot, a lot. So I thought I’d explain here.

One of my favorite sayings by the happiness guru, Gretchen Rubin is “outer order, inner calm.”  This is me in a nutshell. I clean a little bit all day long as messes occur, and finish up once the babies are in bed for the night. I just can’t let things go at my house. I mean, I can on a rare occasion. Like when my husband promises me he’ll do it and asks me to quit driving him nuts with all my tidying. Poor guy can never find his water glass because I already put it in the dishwasher.

Every morning I am jolted awake by a crying baby. And if the first thing I see as I’m walking through the kitchen is smelly dishes and toy dump trucks, it makes me even more stressed. I wish it didn’t you guys, but it does. I’m not neglecting my kids to go clean baseboards, but I do like for my house to be tidy. In this chaotic state of having two kids under two years old, I need to have a little order in my life. And this is how I find it.

We don’t have a house cleaner, never have. So if you see a photo that I posted of our clean home, that’s because I cleaned it, and it made me happy. I do it because it is a priority to me to have my environment be peaceful. Having a newborn and a toddler can put any mom into a bit of an anxious state. Now, I’m not saying I need a xanax prescription just yet, but this is one of the ways that I keep my anxiety in check. (Side note, another way I keep from feeling anxious is by turning off all of my phone notifications. Yes, even text messages.)

Every mom is different of course, and this is simply what works for me. Also, my kids are still young, so perhaps I’ll be eating my words in a few years. I just wanted to give a different perspective on that age-old piece of advice. And I also wanted to clarify that my house is not spotless because I am some supermom. It’s clean because I am a neat freak who is trying to find a little slice of calm in her day with two little ones.

What about you? Can you let the chores wait?

xx,

Heidi

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How We Named Our Inez Marie

How we named our daughter, Inez Marie

I hadn’t planned on writing about how we named Inez, however, I have had so many questions on her name! I thought I would answer them here and share her naming story. First off, I want to clarify the pronunciation of her name. Which, I will say, I never thought I would have to do! It seemed obvious to both Jeff and I, but I suppose you never know until you announce. Our Inez’s name is pronounced “In-ez.” We’ve heard some pretty creative variations, but it’s simply, Inez. Just like it looks. Her name means “pure” and has Spanish origins, but that’s not why we chose it.

Years ago, when Jeff and I were dating, his father’s mother passed away. We traveled to Chehalis to attend her celebration of life. During the service, we both noticed the most beautiful name on the program book. Jeff’s Grandmother’s middle name was Inez. We both mentioned the name several times that day and on our way home. I can’t recall if we said it out loud then, or if it was just an unspoken agreement. But we knew that someday, if we were lucky enough to have a daughter, she would be named Inez.

We loved that it paid homage to Jeff’s family. We loved how unique, yet timeless the name felt. Settling on Marie as a middle name was simple, as we wanted to include a family name from my side as well. My Great Grandmother Winnifred’s middle name was Marie given to her by her Father in honor of her Mother Marie. My mom, and I both have Marie as a middle name. In fact, my dad often calls my mom Marie as her first name.

Our Julian Koki also has a family name. Named after his Japanese Grandfather, Koki. I love the idea that both of our children are watched over by family members before them.

Our Inez Marie is such a dream. I am currently working on writing her birth story, and cannot wait to show you all photos from the magical day she was born.

xx,

Heidi

Photo by Chelsea Macor Photography

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Double Strolling

Double strolling with two under two! On beautiful Bainbridge Island, Washington at Battlepoint Park. Post partum style.

Double strolling with two under two! On beautiful Bainbridge Island, Washington at Battlepoint Park. Post partum style.

Double strolling with two under two! On beautiful Bainbridge Island, Washington at Battlepoint Park. Post partum style.

Double strolling with two under two! On beautiful Bainbridge Island, Washington at Battlepoint Park. Post partum style.

Double strolling with two under two! On beautiful Bainbridge Island, Washington at Battlepoint Park. Post partum style.

Double strolling with two under two! On beautiful Bainbridge Island, Washington at Battlepoint Park

Double strolling with two under two! On beautiful Bainbridge Island, Washington at Battlepoint Park. Post partum style.

It just occurred to me that I never announced on the blog that our newest addition has arrived! Our beautiful Inez Marie was born on August 15th and I promise to post her birth story soon! She is the spitting image of her brother, and has the sweetest disposition already. I announced her arrival on my 5 different social media channels, but never the blog, whoops. Bainbridge Boheme has definitely taken a back seat lately. Still figuring out how to juggle two kiddos under two years old!

We had our first big outing as a family the other day with a fun little walk around a local park. My postpartum recovery has been slow and surprisingly harder then the first time around. Thus me taking 2 weeks for a big walk like this! I am hoping for smooth sailing from here on out though. Inez has been a dream and Julian makes me proud everyday by being such an amazing big brother. I am so grateful for our little family of four, and can’t wait for more double strollin’ with my babes!

Happy Monday everyone!

xx,

Heidi

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Home Decor: Barn Wood Doesn’t Always Mean Rustic

Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture.

Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture. Repurposed barn wood turns into a chic table for this Pacific Northwest home. Lots of gorgeous wood decor and character from this custom Barns 2 Home table behind the couch. Environmentally friendly furniture.

Dress: SheIn / Julian’s Shirt & Shorts: Target / White vase: Pottery Barn / Bag: Salt House Mercantile / Blankets: Pendelton White and Black / Basket: Overstock

I have been so eager to share with you all our custom table created by the amazing Barns 2 Home. As the name suggests, Barns 2 Home takes reclaimed barn wood and creates unique pieces for your home.  I was all in with this company when I heard about Barns 2 Home’s mission to “save one million trees.” In working with reclaimed barn wood, they positively impact our environment by decreasing the demand for new lumber. But their craft is what has truly impressed me. When our table arrived, I was blown away with how their team captured our vision. It was like the table had been there all along, it just fit perfectly.

The wood is rich with character, color and attention to detail. Simply put, it’s nothing like you could ever buy in a store. Our home remodel has taken years, and we are still in the process of adding finishing touches along the way. This table has added so much charm to our living room, I stare at it every time I walk by!

We are so pleased with our table and the character it adds to our space. It’s a great feeling to be contributing to Barns 2 Home’s mission of environmental stewardship. But perhaps more exciting is how incredible this work of art looks in our home! Barns 2 Home also supplies re-purposed barn wood, but I think the real magic is in their unique creations. They work with you every step of the way in designing and building custom décor and furniture.  I already have thoughts of designing a gorgeous kids table for arts and crafts!

I cannot rave about Barns 2 Home enough. Be sure to check them out and get started on building your custom piece today!

xx,

Heidi

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Just a Matter of Days Now…

Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother

Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother

Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother Maternity photography on Vashon Island in Washington State on Lavender Hill Farm. Maternity photos with mom and baby's big brother

Dress: ASOS, similar here and non-maternity here // Julain’s Shirt: Gap, Shorts: Zara sold out

It’s just a matter of days now before we get to meet our sweet baby girl. I have been feeling excited and anxious all at the same time. I cannot wait to meet our baby and hold her in my arms. I imagine her to look like Julian, who at birth looked just like Jeff. I must say, part of me is a little nervous about having a one year old and a newborn! Any advice from you two-under-two mamas? I need all the tips I can get! Here are some fun tidbits about my pregnancy that I’ve never shared before!

How I discovered I was pregnant: It was just a week before Christmas and I went to Seattle to meet one of my best friend’s for a fun girls day. Jesse and I grew up together and now both have babies the same age. We started talking about how we were both feeling so bloated and sluggish after way too many holiday treats. Then we started talking about when we may try for baby number 2. After saying goodbye to Jess I walked back to the ferry boat thinking about our conversations. On a whim I bought a pregnancy test before hopping on the ferry. I took the test on the ferry ride home (so glam) and sure enough, it was POSITIVE! The best part is that Jesse took a test the very next day (not knowing about mine yet) and hers was positive too!

Who knew first: I called my sister that day to tell her the news! I wanted to surprise Jeff in a fun way, so I need my sis by my side to help craft a plan! Jesse knew right away, as well as our dear friend Ashley, who also discovered she was pregnant just days later! We could not have planned that if we tried!

How I told Jeff: On the morning of Christmas Eve I had Jeff open a very special Christmas present. I wrapped up 4 beautiful red Christmas ornaments with hand painted gold calligraphy reading; Jeff, Heidi, Jules and Baby. Jeff was so excited and shocked and over the moon all at the same time! We told the rest of our families then next day. Best Christmas ever.

How I felt: For the majority of the pregnancy I felt miserable. I’ve spoken candidly about that here and here. But as the end nears I feel healthy and excited. Albeit very tired and enormous.

What I craved: Carbs! Pizza, mac & cheese, lasagna! Also, fresh fruits like watermelon and strawberries. Any vegetable I saw would make me nauseous. If I could eat Molly Moon’s Salted Caramel ice cream daily, I would.

Greatest fear: This may sound silly, but I am just uncertain about what it will be like to have a baby that is not Julian. Jules and I get along like two peas in a pod. He’s truly my buddy. So I have a hard time imaging what it will be like to parent a baby that isn’t Jules. I keep saying things like “oh I hope she’s like her brother!” But of course she will have her own unique personality to bring to our family. One that deep down I know I will love. Even if she’s the exact opposite of her brother! I remember having the same fear of the unknown before delivering my Julian, and now he has my whole heart.

Greatest joy: Few things compare to that initial ultrasound when you fear baby’s heartbeat for the first time! But I will say, that as she’s grown, I have come to love her powerful kicks inside my belly. She throws me some zingers that can take my breath away! I am growing a strong girly in this belly of mine.

I am still on cloud nine over these maternity photos by the incredible Taylor Catherine Photography. We shot just before the sun went down on beautiful Vashon Island. The scent of this lavender field was out of this world!

Jeff and I both feel so blessed to be our baby girl’s parents. And she is the luckiest girl in the world to have Julian as her big brother. Just a matter of days now girly.

xx,

Heidi

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Stunning San Juan Island

Ferry ride to the San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

^Dress: Sold out, similiar here and here! Shoes: Nordstrom. Julian’s shirt: Splendid, Shorts: Nordstrom, Shoes: Native

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

Roche Harbor Resort pool on San Juan Island in Washington State

^My lil’ fishy! Hat: Barna & Co

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

^Dress: Eliza B, Shoes: Nordstrom. Julian’s shirt: Gap, Shorts: Nordstrom, Shoes: Native

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

^Hat: American Needle, Sweatshirt: Nike, T-shirt: TopShop Shorts: Nordies, Shoes: Nike

A visit to Roche Harbor on San Juan Islands. A must see in Washington State, Seattle area!

A few weeks back we had the most incredible family trip to the San Juan Islands! One of my oldest and dearest friends, Britta, got hitched in dreamland! The wedding took place in the garden of the Roche Harbor Resort on San Juan Island. I was fortunate enough to be one of Britta’s bridesmaids.  From Seattle, the San Juans are a few hours drive North and a quick ferry ride. So that made it two ferry rides for us coming from Bainbridge Island! We stayed on the North end of the island in Roche Harbor. Roche is full of historical charm, and the most incredible gardens. I mean just look at that trellis of roses! I keep telling Jeff how I’d like to repeat this trip annually! Above are some of my favorite snaps from my iPhone that we took on the trip.

We stayed in a cozy condo through the Roche Harbor Resort. Julian got to feed the deer every morning from our deck, as we soaked in the view of the harbor. We loved eating breakfast at the Lime Kiln Cafe (the donuts!) and walking around the docks looking at all the gorgeous boats. While I had the chance to get pampered as a bridesmaid, Jules and Jeff hit up the warm outdoor pool. I’ll never forget how happy Jules was cutting a rug on the dance floor! And he’s now obsessed with “cheers-ing” glasses after watching all of the wedding toasts. It’s seriously the cutest!

My friend is not a social media fan, so I wanted to respect her privacy by not putting her wedding photos on blast here! But holy cow, it should be featured in Martha Stewart Weddings if you ask me. And our bridesmaid’s dresses were out of this world pretty! Perfect dress to accommodate the growing bump too.

If you’ve never been to the San Juans, it is a Washington State must see! Friday Harbor is gorgeous, but Roche Harbor has my heart! Seriously, the rose trellis you guys! Adieu!

xx,

Heidi

 

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My Favorite Purchases from the Nordstrom Sale

Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^Block Heel Bootie / Leopard Flats sold out similar / Perforated Booties (love mine in blush!)Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^Oh so cozy Free People sweater! I sized up for a slouchy look.Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^Living in these Ugg House Slippers! I get a new pair every year because I wear these to death.

9 month pregnant belly with Zella leggings and pink Nikes from Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

^These Zella leggings are the perfect shade for fall & under $40! Nikes aren’t on sale, but I love them!Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale! Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^Splendid Top (comes as a set with joggers under $30!) and the sweetest kicks!Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^ Joggers, joggers and more joggers! I sized up on these so Jules can wear them into fall & winter Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^The softest jammies ever! Loving this brand!Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^Prettiest pink blankie for baby girl (a must have!) and these Freshly Picked mocs are under $40!Best of the 2017 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale!

^This hair dryer is a game changer! Wish I would have bought it years ago. My fav dry shampoo.

Happy Saturday everyone! I don’t normally post on the weekend, but this weekend is a special occasion! Today and tomorrow mark the finals days of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale! Tomorrow, Sunday, August 6th, will be your last chance to grab what’s on your wish list before items get marked up. Or worse yet, before they all sell out! I know that I’ve already tried to order a few things that have sold out (SAD) so get on it!

Above are some of my absolute favorites that I picked up at this years sale! Let me know if you have any questions about any of these products. I’d love to know what you’re getting! Happy shopping!

xx,

Heidi

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Life Lately via Instagram

Maternity fashion in body con dress with casual ball cap and white nike sneakers

Hat: Nordstrom / Sunnies: BP / Dress: Ingrid & Isabel / Bag: BP under $25! / Shoes: Nike

^Finally got out of sweat pants and got myself dressed.

Maternity style

Dress: Free People / Slides: Steve Madden only $25!

^Fav summer slides…as long as my feet aren’t too swollen!

All pink maternity style

Sunnies: Diff / Dress: TopShop / Purse: SheIn only $30! / Slides: Steve Madden

^I had three maternity appointments this day! So much driving, so many US Weeklys

Baby girl's nursery

Swaddles: Little Unicorn and Nordstrom / Candle: Woodwick / Book: Amazon / Shoes: Freshly Picked (under $40!) / Bows: Baby Bling Bows / Unicorn: Jellycat, mine is from Barna & Co

^Getting baby girl’s nursery together. It’s about time!

Morning light and morning muffins in my white kitchen with open shelving

^Morning light and morning muffins!

9 months pregnant, lounge robe and house slippers from Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Robe: Honeydew / Slippers: Ugg (on-sale!)

^Pretty early to bed these days! Jeff refers to these as my “house wife slippers” lol.

Touch-a-truck event on Bainbridge Island at Summer Fest in Washington State

Hat: Barna and Co / Shirt: Splendid (major sale!) / Shorts: Target / Shoes: Native

^My little truck lover at SummerFest on Bainbridge Island!

9 month pregnant belly with Zella leggings and pink Nikes from Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Shirt: TopShop / Leggings: Zella (only $35! Still need to hem these) Nikes: Zappos, love them in blue!

As I near the end of my pregnancy my energy level is plummeting! Which is a bummer because I still have a zillion things to do to get ready to meet our baby girl! You know, like decorate her room! I had intended on sharing with you all this amazing lemon bar recipe I made recently. I made it for a BBQ we hosted and it was a hit! Julian had more then I’d like to confess. But I’m just too tired to recreate the dish and photograph it. So, I’m just going to build a mountain of suspense over lemon bars. And instead, share with you a little behind the scenes from last week on my Instagram, including a few fun outfits that I wore!

I’ve mentioned this before on my Instagram account, but I think it’s worth mentioning here. I have found maternity fashion to be very challenging for me. A lot of the items I would try on would leave me feeling HUGE and not so excited about being pregnant. Over time, I found that wear more bump hugging outfits was actually really flattering. I’m normally not one for a curve hugging, body-con dress. But I found that they suit me in pregnancy, so I’ve been running with it!

Also, a ton of the items I’m wearing are on sale now through the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale! The sale lasts until August 6th, and I’ve already missed out on a few items that I was lusting over. So, hop on it and snag your favorites. Hope you enjoyed these looks that I wore last week! Follow along for more on instagram: @heidi.stephens.

Hope everyone has a great Tuesday!

xx,

Heidi

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From the Heart

Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood.

Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood.

Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. Beach maternity photoshoot, maternity photos by the water, white off the shoulder maternity gown, photography on beautiful Bainbridge Island Washington in the Pacific Northwest. Sharing honest struggles about pregnancy illness and battling hyperemesis gravidarum in pregnancy from vomiting to depression in pregnancy. Seeing the beauty in motherhood. (Dress: Etsy; Custom Hair Piece: The Botanist Co; Photography by Janet Lin Photography)

When my dear friend and photographer Janet and I set out to do this photoshoot, I was already eager to share the photos with you all! I was thinking to myself how I would tell you all about how this is the perfect dress for a maternity shoot (true) and how wonderful and easy Janet is to work with (absolutely true)! And about how I was so excited to finally do a beach shoot on beautiful Bainbridge Island (true again)! But when Janet sent me photos I became overwhelmed by something else, and I wanted to share that with you instead. I felt overwhelmed with guilt.

Let me explain. During my pregnancy, I have battled hyperemesis gravidarum and have spoken candidly about how that has effected my life. From the non-strop vomiting, and all the way into an anti-nausea medication induced depression. After I had Julian and I looked back on my pregnancy, I would think to myself, “well of course you didn’t really enjoy it! You were miserable!” But in the moment, being pregnant, it is so hard to offer myself that same kind of grace. So, what do I feel, but guilt. Guilt for not loving and embracing pregnancy.  Guilt, for the days that I despised it.

I look at these photos and I feel like I can see myself in a different light. I can see the beauty of pregnancy. The miracle of it. The edges have been smoothed. And I feel guilt for not seeing it sooner.

That is so hard for me to say. I do not by any means want to seem ungrateful for the daughter that is growing inside of me. I am very aware that pregnancy loss and infertility are something that many women struggle with. Women I know personally and those I do not know. Even my dear friend Janet has experienced great loss as a mother and written beautifully about it. And so, the guilt over not loving pregnancy keeps piling on.

I am blessed beyond measure for my daughter. And I need to come to terms with the fact that pregnancy is not easy for me. That yes, on somedays I cried to my husband that I couldn’t do it anymore. That I wanted my old life back. And the worst, that I didn’t want to be pregnant anymore. I have tears in my eyes as I type that because it breaks my heart to confess how dark things were for me. But it is the truth.

Offering yourself grace is not always simple. And I think we as women struggle with it particularly. So, I am vowing to see myself and my pregnancy differently. I am choosing to see myself and my experience through a different lens, and to embrace it from here on out. Even if that’s just a few more weeks. I’m choosing to embrace it for the joy and the miracle that it is. But, I am also choosing to accept the darkness of those first 6 months. And to not feel the guilt and weight of them any longer.

Moms, you don’t have to love pregnancy.  You don’t even have to like it to still be grateful and appreciative of its gifts. But you don’t have to feel guilty for feeling the way you do. Feel what you feel, and remember that, like most things, this too shall pass. Sending love and grace to all.

xx,

Heidi

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Nordstrom Anniversary Sale: My Favorite Finds

The early access Nordstrom Anniversary Sale has officially begun! The most wonderful time of the year for shopping! My mother raised me on Nordstrom, and this is my absolute favorite sale of the year. I stock up on lots of basics that I buy year after year, and I grab a few pieces to wear throughout the autumn and winter months. I usually pick up some new boots, a versatile bag, and some cozy sweaters. But I have to tell you, being so big and pregnant has not exactly put me in the mood to shop.  Woe is me, I know. But then I realized, I have just a few more weeks of maternity life! And having some new, stylish pieces to wear may be a nice way to transition out of maternity wear. Above are some of my favorites from the NSALE!

Early access for Nordstrom credit and debit card holders runs from July 13th-20th, regular access begins July 21st-Aug 6th. Shop the full sale here!

Are you a diehard Nordies fan too? What pieces are you eyeing?! Let me know!

xx,
Heid

 

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