Striking a Balance

Let's get ready to ramblllllllle!

Get it?

Ok, moving on.

Yesterday's weekend photos were light hearted and I've got a fun giveaway lined up for tomorrow, so I  thought I'd mindlessly ramble at you today. It just seemed to make sense. I'm talking about balance. It's a universal struggle I'm sure, especially for parents.

Balance is something I've been thinking about a lot lately. How to balance the needs of a busy toddler, a growing business, personal interests, and making time for Ryan and me. My first step so far has been coffee.


Walks to clear my head help.


Especially when they involve coffee.

In all seriousness, I'm trying to work out how to keep everything feeling balanced, not get overwhelmed, and feel like I'm checking all the boxes that need to get checked at home, with hubby, with WC, and with the babe.

I really find that walks with Olivia help. Getting outside does us both so much good and I feel like she naps better after which gives me time to get work done. Not to mention I can sit down to work with a clear head.


My priority is always our family, but I often feel like there are times I drop the ball. 

"Am I teaching her all the things I'm supposed to be?". 

"Am I a slacker wife because we're eating Subway for dinner again?". 

"She just dragged her syrup covered plate through her hair....can I get a way with just rubbing a baby wipe over it?"

Daily questions.

As far as figuring out how to fit more hours in the day, I'm still working on that. Until then, I'm making sure I stop and tell myself to chill out, that it's just headbands, it's ok if she runs around naked 75% of the day, and that I don't know a lot of people here yet so it's fine if I go to the grocery store in my sweatpants with all my adolescent acne (seriously, skin?!) exposed for all the world to see.

We're making it a point to get a babysitter at least every two weeks so we can have a date, I'm going to bed at a reasonable hour (most of the time), and I'm trying not to worry too much about Olivia's complete disinterest in using words.

Date night, good for the soul, bad for the waistline.

Then I stop to tell myself that I'm a weenie. I have one kid, just one. It will all be fine. Although if one. more. stranger. tells me to get cracking on baby number 2, I might roll my eyes so hard they get lost in my skull.

So that's where I'm at. Don't leave me alone on Mom Island - tell me you worry about this stuff too? Even better, tell me how you find balance, I'm all ears. 

Weekend Photos

We've spent the last two weekends working really hard around the house. After a Summer of traveling and relaxing, the house was looking slack. I've been purging/organizing closets, pantries, the fridge, freezer, and working on the office and guest rooms while Ryan is trimming grass and working on getting the office (which has been at a standstill since February) finished. We've also got two sets of company coming in October, so I'm highly motivated.

We stop only for food (mostly take out Mexican) and to build blanket forts with the nugget. Or the occasional Target trip. If you say you didn't see that coming, you're either new or a liar.

Here we go:

Wine and popcorn on Friday night. Movie of choice? Not sure, pretty confident I instagrammed through it.


A quick stop by Ryan's office on Friday to bring him an iced coffee and show off her giant apple. We're happy he's home for many reasons, one of which being the return to our weekly visits to bring him treats.


My favorite meal ever, grilled cheese and tomato soup for an easy dinner.


Outfit for dinner with Britt and Veronika. I obviously changed my mind after I snapped this.

jeans | purse is old | shoes are old and ordered while in labor

On a date with Dad while mom was shoveling Mexican food.


Part of picking up the house means weeding. Lots 'o weeding.







Cabinets for the office, made by hand by the handiest husband around.


It's Sunday night, I've got fresh sheets, and a kiddo due up at 7, so I guess I'll see you on the other side.

xo

Loving Lately



Thanks for stopping by again, ladies! Links to everything mentioned in the video below, as well as some shots of the jeans and top on!

Top (I swear you'll look 10 lbs thinner) | Jeans (the perfect distressed denim) | Perfume | Lipgloss | Macadamia Repair Oil

Jeans


Top and tiny person mirror smudges.


Happy Friday!

Invested

When I stepped outside yesterday to retrieve a stray boot that Olivia absolutely had to have rightthissecondorI'lldie , I practically freaked out when I felt a cool breeze on my face. It's finally cooling off in Texas and I couldn't throw a vest on quick enough. I posted this on Insta already, so repeat photo offending, but I'm a little obsessed with vests this year. Sure, sure it will be back to 90 again soon, but let's enjoy the vest wearing days while they last.


I talked about these vests last week when I was talking about my wardrobe purge, but they're worth revisiting because they're going to be a Fall (and Winter) staple around here. We don't often need coats because it just doesn't get that cold, so vests are the perfect outerwear in these parts and Liv and I are both stocked up.


I'm a little smitten with how they look on her. Don't let her innocent face fool you. Lambie was promptly run over after this photo was snapped and she didn't even look down. If you can't keep up, don't stroll with us.

I really love these vests because they're not bulky (I don't buy anything that adds bulk, I had a 30 lb pregnancy weight gain for that) and they're neutral enough to pair with lots of different items.

I'm looking forward to styling these (for her and myself), so stay tuned for some killer smudged mirror selfies.



The J Crew herringbone is still available on the Factory website and they're running a 30% off sale right now, if you feel so inclined.

hers (old navy, sold out) | mine

Speaking of styling, help a sloppy mom out - what are your favorite ways to style your vests?

10 Random Photos

Because I feel like it would be rude to just throw a blank screen on here this morning, I'll type. But my heart's not in it. 
Or my brain. 
I'm out of excuses for my lack of creativity too (husband being back and all), so apologies from the bottom of my Starbucks loving little heart.

Serendipitously, Steph (aka my cross country other half) was suffering a similar mental blog block, so we're teaming up to bring you a whole lotta random today. 





The parking lot in our living room.


This kid has got to learn how to relax.


The world's most amazing top for date night that I can't wait to talk to you about on Friday.


Judging the crap out of the neighbor girls. Twelve year olds think they're so cool.



Prepping for a weekly WC FaceTime meeting with Steph.


A rare straight hair day.


I couldn't have picked this magazine up quicker if they'd changed the name to "Megan".

If you've made it this far, you deserve a medal. 

xo

Weekend Photos

In case you don't follow me on Instagram (you're missing coffee photos, selfies, and photos of my kid, so hurry), Ryan is home! He's been gone for 4 weeks and in the past month, we've seen him for 2 days. Military spouses and single parents : how do you do it? I'm know I'm a weenie with my whining over here, but that solo parenting thing is no joke. You all get my undying respect.

I didn't mention he was gone because I didn't want anyone showing up at my house and demanding the entirety of my embarrassingly large nail polish collection or insisting that I make them a headband, so you know....

In any event, he's home and we seriously enjoyed our first weekend back together.  We somehow managed to have enough time to work really hard around the house and have time for a date and some relaxation, thanks to a time warp known as caffeine. 






Happy to finally be standing with someone who has bigger feet than me.

Olivia was psyched to spend most of the weekend wearing nothing but stickers, the Pats won, and the weather was gorgeous. No complaints over here.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

Loving Lately

I'm not in pain, promise. Don't let the thumbnail fool you (thanks for the great options, YouTube). Once of these days I'll get less lazy and make a custom one for each video. That day isn't today.


Hat 

Enjoy your weekends!

Willow & Co is 1!

So the 'ol blog turned one yesterday.


Want to know a secret?

I needed you all. I needed the blog. Big time.

We had just moved here and I was having a hard time coping with Ryan's new work schedule, being away from home, and struggling to put myself out there to meet new people. Being able to put stuff out there and connect with other ladies like you really helped get me over the hump. Without the blog, I probably never would have started the Etsy shop, and don't even get me started on what a difference that's made for me.

I love that we can come on here every day and sit down with our coffees and chat about the important things. Nail polish, maxi dresses that flatter your post partum bod, mom fails, Target scores, and DIYs. It makes me happy and helps me feel connected when I'm feeling alone on mom island.

So thanks!

We made red velvet cupcakes yesterday (that I properly blogger documented) and it seemed appropriate for a blog birthday.




Enjoy your reprieve from iPhone photos. It won't last long!

xo

Wardrobe Purge

How often do you pop on to someone's blog and expect them to talk about wanting fewer items of clothing?

Oh, never, you say? Well today's the day I'm shaking things up.

I have too much junk in my closet. I'm sick of feeling like I have nothing to wear, struggling to put together outfits that are comfortable and flattering, and tired of feeling like I need to spend more money to have things to wear.

I've read about the capsule wardrobe and while I don't think it's for me (I really do love to shop), there are some aspects of it that really spoke to me. I like the idea of being able to see exactly what you have because it's not all crammed in there, of knowing that everything you have is a piece you love, and easily being able to get dressed in the morning.

So. Ready for some poorly lit, high quality iPhone snaps?


I took everything out of my closet. Everything.


I only put back the things I loved, that fit me, and that flattered me.

Also, duplicates had to go. How many black maxi dresses do you need? One, not seven. Same goes for rompers. There were three hanging next to each other and only two had been worn regularly, so the other one had to go.

I was ruthless, items with sentimental value went. Oh I bought that for my honeymoon but still haven't worn it? Probably won't, into the bag. Six blazers and dress slacks? I'm a stay at home mom, one of each is enough for the occasional funeral. Get what I'm saying?


I had just done a big purge a couple months ago so I had less to work with, but I still managed to get rid of 50 more items, leaving me with 68 total. I think I've taken my wardrobe down to 1/4 of its original size and love it.

This allowed me to see what I felt like I had for holes in my wardrobe (I really don't have a everyday jacket, so I ordered this one - on sale!), and helped me really identify my style. I love skinny leg pants with flowy, loose tops. I got rid of so many oxfords, fitted tees, and other things I never wore.

It was so annoying to get rid of Zara and J Crew pieces after spending good money on them, but never wearing them, so I'm determined to only buy things I love from now on or that fill a hole in my wardrobe, like the jacket. Just think - all those $20 shirts I never wore, could have been a gorgeous $100 item I loved but felt I couldn't afford, since I'd blown it on 5 cheaper tops I didn't really like. I feel dumber the longer I type, so maybe I should stop.

The bottom line is that the past few days of getting dressed have been a breeze. I'm not dying to jump back into sweatpants the second we get back from errands or a playdate because I like what I have on. To that end, I thought it could be fun to share with you five pieces I'm especially loving and can't wait to wear this Fall.


amazing vest | old J crew sweater - similar here | black dolman sleeve sweater | same amazing vest in different color | aztec sweater from TJ Maxx

If it survived the purge, you know they're good.


The elbow patches on the old J Crew sweater are just my favorite - what is it about patches?!


The much coveted herringbone J Crew vest has been restocked at Factory and it's awesome. Same goes for the green one I picked up last year. I wore it constantly so I knew the herringbone would get tons of wear.

The dolman sleeve sweater from Old Navy (on sale currently) is a great staple and I like the shorter sleeves for the Fall heat in Texas.


So there you have it - another riveting post about life issues - wardrobe purging.

I was initially a little scared I'd be left with nothing to wear, but I was already feeling that way, so I'm glad I took the plunge. How about you?

Family Photos

While we were in Maine in August, I recruited my favorite photographer to take some family photos for my parents' 50th birthdays. I also wanted some for myself. I know, selfish.

She never, ever disappoints and I always, always have a stroke when I see them for the first time. 

Want to see?





One of my favorite things about these sessions is that Danielle never tries to pose Olivia. She knows as well as I do that that would be an exercise in futility. She lets her run around and just captures the chaos in the nicest possible way. She be gifted.




She also knows how much I love detail shots and got tons of close ups of little feet, ponytails, and crinkly eyed smiles. I won't share those because you've been such troopers and I don't want to punish you further.




Basically, I love them and have already uploaded some to the Walgreens website so I can pick them up, crazy lady style.

Tomorrow we're talking about clothes. Get excited.

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