Category Archives: Royals

Maternity Dresses (I know).

Oh, friends.  Two weeks ago I was buying more maxi skirts because my rotation of maxi dresses was getting tired.  Last week I confronted the reality that I am getting bigger and there is no way that I will be getting smaller for the forseeable future.

This is now the point in the show where I would like us all to light a candle at the altar of Our Patron Saint HRH The Duchess Of Cambridge Who Guides Us In All Things.

I feel like it’s no secret that I am a massive fan of hers, and that I am especially a fan of her style.  It’s classic, but more importantly, if I had to pick a practical word to describe Kate’s wardrobe, it is Appropriate.   I can’t wear what Kim Kardashian wears, nor would I want to for a host of reasons.  I love what Taylor Swift wears, but her style wouldn’t really suit me.  Kate’s style = wearable and suitable.

As I flipped through the maternity sections of GAP, Old Navy, Target, and LOFT, I found the experience to be…distressing.  I didn’t love any of the styles, and they’re not things that I felt I would wear were I Not Pregnant.  I am not terrifically concerned about what to wear casually, but being well-dressed for work is important to me, and I have also needed to confront the issue of What To Wear For The High Holidays.

So while I already knew about Kate’s love of Seraphine, after Googling “Kate Middleton Maternity Dress,” I found another frock she had worn from Asos and I was completely sold.

Frankly, all of the dresses I ordered cost more than any other dress I would consider ordering were I not pregnant.  There is a tiny part of me that cares about that (AKA the budget-minded side of me that is sort of dying inside).  But there is a bigger part of me that realizes that I will probably be wearing a number of these post-partum because you don’t magically lose all of the weight after you have the baby and that they will definitely be wheeled out for when Little Critter gets a sibling.  All of which is to say, that I’d rather buy some things that I really love once instead of a bunch of mediocre stuff that I’m not terrifically jazzed about.

Asos – Maternity Nursing Kate Wrap Skater Dress in Spot Print with 3/4 Sleeve

Asos

Seraphine – Polka Dot Mock Wrap Maternity Dress

Seraphine 1

Seraphine – Green Knot Front Maternity Dress

Seraphine 3

Kate wore this one in fuchsia and also in a floral print.  I still have some feelings about the floral print and might end up sourcing it later, but I decided that the green would be a more practical color for what’s all in my wardrobe at the current moment.

Seraphine – Black  Knot Front Maternity Dress

Seraphine 2

Kate didn’t wear this one, but I felt like getting a longer-sleeved version of the dress (and in black!) would be a smart buy.

Unfortunately, now that Princess Charlotte has been born, I will be left to fend for myself.  Thankfully it will be fall sooner than later, which means that at least when I’m NOT at work, I can start to wheel out the leggings and cardigans.

Mama friends, what were/are your favorite maternity brands?  I’m guessing I’m going to need more than four dresses to get me through this thing.

 

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For Good Reason

This morning I woke up to a raging sore throat that felt not entirely unlike what I hypothesize swallowing sandpaper might be like.  No, not the stuff with the really fine grit.  The stuff with the really coarse grit.

Apparently sometimes you don’t know how much you were using your Outdoor Voice until you’re not anymore.

Croaking = Not My Cutest Moment.  Though Marcus seemed to get a bit of a kick out of it.

As we all know, The Show Must Go On.  Even though, in this case that meant leaving the house with a wet head to drive in freezing rain.

Y’all know I don’t ever want you to forget that I was a blonde in a past life.

But it was for good reason – Emily, Ann and I made plans weeks ago to gather at Falafel King so we could workshop a summer plan of ours that is (finally) starting to come together in a coherent way.

I mean, come on kittens, I wouldn’t leave the house on a day like today for just anyone.

So we workshopped away over plates of wonderful Middle Eastern food.  Hummus, Spinach Pie, Falafel and Salad were just what the doctor ordered.

Once we adjourned and I made it (safely) back to The Nest, I curled up in bed with a marathon of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills that I promptly fell asleep to.

It’s extremely rare that I actually have a three-hour chunk of time on the weekend where I can enjoy that sort of thing without the fear of Getting Everything Else Done hanging over my head.

And to be totally honest, I usually can’t justify spending that much time in front of the television set.  I mean, come on.  There’s always life that needs living.

So just call it coincidence.  Or The Universe at work.  Because there was definitely a point where I thought that the best I was going to be able to do was Guy Fieri.  No one is strong enough to take that for 30 minutes, much less three hours.

Once I emerged from my fleece-cocoon, I took it upon myself to research The Official Date of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.  Because really, it’s never too soon to start making plans to watch The River Pageant and throw a “street party” of our own.

For the record, The Big Day is June 3rd.

How this actually fits in with anything else I’ve just told you, I’m not entirely sure.   It likely has to do with the fact that beyond doing three loads of laundry and windex-ing every flat surface in our house, I’m counting it as My Major Accomplishment of the day.

What’s your definition of a perfect lazy afternoon?

p.s. Mads is hosting a giveaway on her blog that includes everything from slippers to dark chocolate with sea salt.  You know you want it!

Potpourri!

Everything is on my mind and yet little bits and pieces here-and-there do not a good blog post make.  It’s been months kittens.  So let’s get down with our bad selves and embrace the spirit of Potpourri!.

1. Prince William and Princess Catherine are finally on the hunt for some good servants. When I was reading about how it was stressful for Prince William, having to ride at the Trooping of the Colours, and then having to toss on a tuxedo to head over straight away to the Epsom Derby, I was all like I KNOW.

Life would be so much easier if there was someone to fetch your outfit and make sure it’s in proper shape instead of having to use the Eco-Friendly Grocery Bag Full Of Clothes In The Back Seat Of Your Car-method.

2. Speaking of which, even though we all know I’m an 11/10 fan of the Princess, this outfit?

Was SO disappointing.  I don’t want to say that it was a dud, because she didn’t look…bad.  It was kind of as if she was attempting to wear three different outfits (hat, jacket, skirt/dress) and NONE of them really “fit” together.  Like someone who doesn’t make a practice of looking in the mirror before they leave the house.

On the bright side, I have a somewhat similar white jacket-arrangement that I snagged at Banana Republic’s Albertville Outlet location during their Black Friday Sale last year.

3. I’m somewhat relieved to know that “Honoring Your Hunger” continues to be a mystery to the majority of the group.  Obviously if I end up learning anything sage from this endeavor (which is to say that cryptic things on scales of one to anything are OUT), I’ll share.  Until that magical moment, I’m just going to keep on waiting for hunger to strike and eating accordingly.  I think that sounds reasonable, no?

4. Since we’re kind of operating on a screwy-schedule this week, on Sunday I made the executive decision to commit to early morning running (~4:45 AM) M-W.  I realized that if the thought of coming home, having to run, trying to eat ANYTHING and then jetting off to meet with someone was stressful, then it would probably be far-more anxiety-inducing in practice.

Usually it’s hell on earth, but this week my body has been on-board.  And since the weather for the past few days has been hovering around ~100 degrees (yes, seriously), I would have ended up on the treadmill anyway.

5. Two Words: Pavement Failure.  Trisha blogged about her experience with it yesterday, and then today I got to witness it first-hand on my commute home.  Long story short, Minnesota roads are designed to expand and contract depending on what the temperature is.  How logical.  Obviously the range is huge because it could be -20 degrees in the winter or 80 degrees in the summer.

Apparently, the range isn’t quite 100 degrees, because whole sections of road on some of our busier highways/freeways have erupted from their proper place and epically crumbled, blocking off entire lanes of traffic.  It is Quite The Thrill when you accidentally drive over/into it or find yourself in a horrifying traffic jam.

What are your thoughts on the Princess’ outfit?

Have you experienced Pavement Failure?

How early would you be willing to roll out of bed to work out?

So much better than words.

It seems bizarre to post a food round-up without editorializing on today’s events, so let’s put that one on hold for now, yes?

Holing up in the basement with Sue and Mom (Marcus, true to form stayed in bed) for some girl time was an absolutely wonderful way to enjoy the royal wedding.  For the total lack of planning that we put into the affair, it turned out to be just lovely (how can you go wrong with champagne, cheese, cakes and croissants?).  It was the kind of perfect morning that everyone deserves to have.

That being said, I ended up not wearing the fascinator (though I was true to the rest of my super-sweet uniform).  At 2 AM when I pressed the brew button on the coffee pot, I couldn’t think of anything that held less appeal.

So, here are thoughts in pictures (and no, I didn’t take any of them myself)…

The trees? Were a wonderful idea (and I'm an 11/10 fan of the fact that the Duchess is a flowers-minimalist comme moi). But seriously? It kind of kills me that they'll be planting this grove of trees somewhere on an estate as a wedding day keepsake. I mean, I thought I was living on the edge wanting a sturdy pair of shoes for crying out loud.

Absolutely beautiful.

Pippa may not be the new Duchess of Cambridge, but her dress? Is the one that all of the dressmakers will copy. Homegirl knocked it out of the park in that dress.

This is probably one of the nicest arrangements I've ever seen Chelsy Davy in. She made some great choices for the wedding and I'm thinking that the press feedback will be extraordinarily positive. THIS is the kind of clobber that another future Princess of England would wear.

Fail-fail-fail-fail-fail. In what world do you wake up in the morning, think to yourself, "My cousin is getting married in front of 2 billion people and I will be sitting in the front row behind my grandmother, the Queen." and then proceed to put THAT on? Like, there's bad, "worst dressed" and all of that. But this? Was outright horrifying. YOU CAN'T UN-SEE THAT.

Oh God, the parade with the carriages and the horses and the sun bursting forth from the clouds? Straight up fairytale. Watching the footage, beyond the flashbulbs in the crowd, this parade looked just timeless.

What were Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie thinking?!

Do you think that Catherine’s dress or Pippa’s dress will catch on more quickly with dress makers?

I’ll be honest, when I saw Catherine get out of the car (so we could see her dress in full-view) I thought it was absolutely GORGEOUS (and am quite pleased I’m not the only one who was thinking Queen Elizabeth-Grace Kelly).  But Pippa’s dress?  That’s a dress I can see people actually wearing.

Twas the night before…

I know, I know.  For being an 11/10 fan of The Royal Family, I’ve kept awfully mum about the Royal Wedding.

But let’s get serious kittens, I have absolutely nothing to add to the conversation right now and quite honestly, it’s really been nice enough to just hang on for the ride.

On Sunday, I watched Lifetime’s William & Kate, which was simultaneously extremely bad and sort of endearing, all at once.  I take solace in the fact that Kirsten shamelessly embraced it as well.

I wouldn’t say it’s one you should race to the DVR for, but on the sliding scale of best/worst Lifetime movies I’ve ever seen, it’s definitely on the more positive side of things.

And today?  Has basically been all Night Before Christmas-y.  I’ve been on a wicked news jag (it might have been wilder than Election night…seriously) and when I got home, I set to getting the house arranged, cleaned and in-order for tomorrow.

What we’ll be up to tomorrow (or in approximately four hours)…

Mom will come over at 2 AM.  Sue will come over at 3 AM.  We will descend to the man cave where we’ll watch the festivities take place on BBC.  Originally I was having a CNN-NBC debate, but once I discovered that BBC was a part of our cracked-out cable package, it was a no-brainer.

I know I really shouldn’t be surprised about this anymore but, really I’m completely clueless as far as the TV is concerned. 

Last night I pulled out the real-sized coffee maker we got at the last bridal shower (yes that means I finally tossed the dirty little two-cupper I’ve had since Freshman year of college) and we’ll brew prolific amounts of coffee.  If at any point we are so inclined to switch to tea, fear not.  There’s always a giant crock of that too.

Mom will bring strawberries and croissants along with a number of other culinary delights found in a proper German breakfast.  Sue will have sourced a bottle of champagne (she is always One Step Ahead of me), and I actioned some Olive Oil Cakes with Lemon and Thyme.  Yes, I’ll tell you all about them during the food round-up.

What all of this really means?

Expect Marmalade.

Insofar as apparel is concerned, I plan on wearing a pair of leggings and some sort of top involving a crew neck.  But if I’m feeling especially kicky, I might add a fascinator-type arrangement.  It was my grandmother’s  and it has been sitting on my side of the vanity in the bathroom probably since Thanksgiving.  If there was ever a time to make it happen, it is now.

Yes, this is the part of the show where you’re meant to be closing your eyes and trying to imagine me kitted out in my finest Go To Hell clothes with a shitty pony, last night’s makeup and a fascinator.

Oh, and maybe a cocktail ring.

More is more.

And if there’s a particularly dull moment in the commentary (we do, after all have three hours to kill before the ceremony even begins), I plan on addressing my mitts and paws.  It will be Soothing and it needs to be done prior to my next bridal shower on Saturday morning anyway.

That, is multi-tasking at its finest.

Will you get up to watch the royal wedding?  What are your plans?  More importantly, what will YOU wear?

p.s. Kittens who blog via Blogger, right now I’m getting an error message from everyone’s blogs when I’m trying to comment.  I’m not sure what that’s all about, but just know that I was checking in on you today 🙂

So Many Different Choices

Ah, Sunday.  The most ambiguous day of the week.  I love you and I dread you at the same time.

What to share?

There are just so many different choices.

I mean, we got to celebrate the first day of spring in a misty-haze, the top came off of le jardin (when the light is better, I’ll show you the madness that are our tomato sprouts…they’re kind of epic), I performed some serious e-mail admin and had the most productive yoga sesh of my life.

I don’t want to say that Downward Dog is my favorite pose.

But Downward Dog is my favorite pose.

There…I said it.

Speaking of yoga, I was in the middle of a wardrobe-purge this morning and discovered that I have four pairs of yoga pants.  And here I was, thinking that I only had two!  Who knew?

Did I mention that on the “high” setting, my heated blanket basically turns into a full-body hot pack?  Because there’s that too.  Consider that the discovery of the century.  I only wish that I would have known this in July.

Yes, I realize this means I will be the only Minnesotan (the only North American, really) using a heated blanket in the middle of the summer.  It’s definitely a case of function over fashion.

Back to the point.

What really did it for me today, was when I was paying for my groceries at ALDI, and the cashier informed me that she thought I looked like Kate Middleton to the point where she did a double take when I walked in the store.

Yes, I think we’re style-soulmates and I would like all of the clothes in her closet, but I’ve never really felt that we could pass for sisters.

OR THE SAME PERSON.

Hello, reality.

Regardless, that one is definitely going in the Lifetime Achievement column.

So, what I didn’t tell you all over the past few days, is that Marcus has been in Vegas since Wednesday morning.  Safety first and all that.

Translation: My life has been one colossal ladies’ night.  In action?

  • I had sushi with Galina.
  • Went to a wine and homemade pizza-fueled sleepover that Tiffany organized (her husband was with Marcus).
  • Brunched with Eli.
  • Had a major beat-down catch-up with Jillian.
  • Went to Santorini’s in Eden Prairie for a lovely blogger brunch meet-up with Stephanie, Anne (and sister!) and Jen.  LOVED it.

I spent an AMAZING weekend with some fabulous women.

And now I feel like I need a weekend to recover from the weekend.  It’s the only way to live, really.

Do you have a celebrity doppelganger?

Are you a yoga devotee?

Going to a studio/group-practice isn’t really my scene, but I love that I can roll out a mat, flip on some ExerciseTV via Comcast On Demand and make things happen.

Potpourri!

It’s past 9 PM, the “A” key on my netbook is acting up, my cuticles have decided that Now Is The Time To Declare War and I’m not even able to conjure a fraction of the effort required to think in a straight line.

Potpourri!, how we’ve missed you so.

I realize that I had Monday off.  But am I the only one who feels like this is just the longest week ever?

I’ve been sleeping like a rock, running like I just had four days off (oh wait…I did), and cooking up a storm.

But in all seriousness, today was long to the point where it was painful.

I did not love that.

I did love that The Pink Pelican (purveyors of my Engagement Party/Rehearsal Dinner dress and Wedding Reception dress) sent me a copy of the most recent Lilly Pulitzer catalog.

I mean, if 40 pages of brightly-patterned frocks don’t raise your spirits, I don’t know what can, honestly.

In the meantime, Marcus has kindly informed me that we now have four hours of joint-custody DVR action to watch.  The downward spiral starts here.

Capturing the spirit of some bandits actioning a hold-up, I ended up forking over $6.90 in fines to the Hennepin County Library.

Some people like to think of it as “charity.”  I like to think of it as I Wasn’t Really Planning On Stealing Them But Thanks Anyway.

I’d like to say that my out-of-control behavior on the reading materials-front ends there.  But I still haven’t even been able to THINK about picking up the February issues of ELLE and Vogue.

Reassuringly or not, I already have the March issues of…Everything.

I take it all back.  The DVR isn’t the downward spiral, my piles of magazines are.

I absolutely can’t get over the arrangement that Kate Middleton wore to the Lifeboat launch today.  I can’t be the only person who feels like The Royal Wedding and a lifetime of public appearances to follow is basically the equivalent of the Sloaney/Preppy fashion gods promising that manna will fall from the sky.

FOREVER.

Give thanks, kittens.

And I’m obsessing a little bit over the New York Times Magazine piece on Heather Armstrong AKA Dooce.  The way I see her, she’s not so much of an idol as that cool aunt who is almost young enough to be your cousin.  But ohmigod, she does it so well.

Speaking of The New York Times, can I just take a moment to say how thankful I am that they kept Mark Bittman on as an opinion columnist?  When he announced that The Minimalist was ending, my heart just about broke.

We are saved.

Longest Week Ever: True or False?