5.08.2018

weekend update/back to work!



What a weekend! We spent so much time outside, soaking in the glorious spring sunshine. We took long walks, went to a birthday party, took Graydon to soccer, worked in the garden, and played baseball with the neighbors. Oh, and Jon had a convention this weekend so I totally mommed up and did my first overnight alone with both kids.


It was a pretty perfect weekend, although a little bittersweet because Jon went back to work on Monday. I went back to work last week, and I’m going to miss spending so much family time together. It was so special for both of us to have so much time home with Finn because unless something unexpected happens, he is our last baby. Now that we're both back to work it feels like that brand-new-baby chapter is over.


He is still so sweet and little, though! He's 10 weeks old today, 50th percentile for height, weight and head size, smiling more and more every day, and sleeping like a champ. Last night he slept for eight hours solid before waking up! He also discovered his feet over the weekend and couldn't stop staring at them. I love seeing his little mind blossoming!

4.06.2018

friday favorites

Finn is napping on his dad and Graydon is happily playing with his toys, so I'm using this (relatively) quiet time to share a few of my current favorite things!


one // two // three // four // five

1. I adore Freshly Picked baby moccasins, and these winking eyes are the cutest! 

2. If you follow me on Instagram, you may have seen my post about reading this book to Finn. It is such a beautiful book, and it gives me all the feels every time I read it. 

3. I have super sensitive skin, and I've been using Acure Marula Oil as a face moisturizer for about a year now. It has done wonders for my skin, and I love that this brand is cruelty free and vegan!

4. Hanna Andersson makes the best PJs and super cute clothes for kids, and I'm obsessed with this gender neutral rainbow print. I just ordered these and these for Finn, and I can't wait to see him in them! Bonus, they are currently on sale!

5. Ok, so a faux fur throw blanket might seem a little odd for spring, but I live in Michigan. I woke up to an inch of snow this morning. Can I please just go hide under this blanket until May???

3.14.2018

hello, finnley!


He's here! Finnley Alan Voigt was born at 6:43 a.m. on Tuesday, February 27, 2018. We are two weeks into life with this sweet babe, and it's already impossible to imagine life without him. He is the most delicious, snuggly little peanut, and I am so unbelievably in love with him. It was a long journey getting to this point, and I will forever be grateful that this boy is here, healthy and safe.





2.22.2018

this is four (and almost a half)


For the past four years, Graydon has been my everything, my buddy, my baby boy. His brother will be here any day now, but he will always be the one who made me a mom. He is so smart, sweet, and funny. He is so observant and analytical, and I love getting to see the world through his eyes. Our days as a family of three are slowly ticking away, but here are a few of the things I want to remember about my brilliant 4-and-almost-a-half-year-old boy:

Graydon James
Age: 4 1/2 (almost)
Grade: Preschool
Favorite Book: Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth

*He wakes me up at 7 every morning, but as soon as we're done with breakfast, he loves getting back in bed and snuggling with his dad while I get dressed and ready for the day.

*His favorite food is anything you eat for breakfast — bagels, eggs, waffles, pancakes, oatmeal, cereal, scones, toast — and his favorite dinner is "breakfast dinner." He loves breakfast so much that we had a brunch PJ party for his 4th birthday. He has also finally discovered that mac 'n' cheese is amazing.

*He loves spending time at the farm — it is his favorite place in the entire world. He also loves swim class, and was just chosen as the star student of the month. (It's very prestigious, we even got a yard sign that's like something out of Friday Night Lights.)

*He spent New Year's Eve at the farm with my mom and watched all three of the original Star Wars movies. He is now completely obsessed with "light savers," Stormtroopers, and the Millennium Falcon.

*He is already the sweetest, best big brother ever. He loves to hug and kiss my tummy and talk to his baby brother, sing him songs, and tell me what the baby is saying to him. He has big plans for how he is going to help change diapers and read to the baby, and he can't wait for him to get here! He also thinks we should name the baby "Stairs." 😂

*He can be so stubborn and frustrating, but just when he senses I'm at the end of my rope, he'll stop and say, "Mom, I love you so much." Melts my heart every time.

I love you, too, my sweet boy, to the moon and beyond.

2.18.2018

countdown to baby: nursery tour!

Only 10 days until my due date! I am so excited to meet this baby, and I can't wait to bring him home! His room is by far my favorite in the entire house — every time I open the door, it makes me smile. The nursery is so cozy and serene, and I love it so much!

The look and feel of the room was inspired by this photo from Pinterest:


I instantly fell in love with the color palette and the hand drawn quality of the mural. A little digging took me to the artist's Etsy page, but since I was going to have to work around a window, I decided it would be best to customize the layout and get the look with paint. I chose a light minty green, Behr Juniper Breeze, for the base color and used four gradually darker shades from the same color family — Misty Moss, Australian Jade, Pine Brook and Secluded Woods — for the mountains. Here's a look at the finished space:


I love the way this room came together! It's so dreamy and calming, and we managed to pull this off with a small budget. The changing table is a Craiglist find that we used in Graydon's nursery, and I found the crib through a local mom-to-mom group on Facebook. The biggest investment was the new glider, but I kept an eye on it and waited to buy when it was on sale. (For product sources and links, scroll to the end of this post!) I kept the rest of the room light and bright, adding in touches of gold, warm wood, cozy textures, and black and white accents. After all, I couldn't do a mountain nursery without a little buffalo check, amirite?



One of my favorite parts of the room is the reading nook. I wanted Graydon to have a special place of his own in the new baby's room, somewhere to hang out, play, and look at books during diaper changes and nursing sessions. The canopy makes this little corner feel so special, and Graydon loves his "cozy area."



I am so happy about the book ledges! I absolutely love books — there is no such thing as too many books — but most of them live downstairs on our family room bookshelves or in Graydon's room in his book bin. I love how the ledges show off the books, though, making them as much artwork as reading material.


I'm still obsessed with my white chair, even though with two cats, two dogs, and two kids it's going to be impossible to keep it clean. At least I'll always have these photos to remind me it used to be white?



Overall I am so beyond happy with this room, and I can't wait to bring our new baby home so we can spend all the sweet, cuddly, newborn days and nights in it together!

Sources:
Crib // Chair // Ottoman // Rug // Pottery Barn Kids Changing Table (from Craigslist, similar here) // Pendant Light // Mobile // Black & White Pillow // Faux Sheepskin Pillow // Crib Sheet // Fox // Hedgehog // Floor Lamp // Canopy // Bean Bag // Rope Basket // Deer Bust // Book Ledges // Macrame Wall Art // Zodiac Hook // Stools // Plaid Blanket // Hearth and Hand by Magnolia Embroidered Pillow (sold out, similar here and here) // Wolf

2.12.2018

countdown to baby: gear guide

When I was pregnant with my first son in 2013, I was so overwhelmed by the registry process. I remember walking into a Buy Buy Baby store for the first time and almost feeling paralyzed. Strollers, car seats, bouncers, burp cloths — there were just so many options. Luckily, with this new baby on the way, I already have a collection of tried-and-tested gear that I know works for my family and our lifestyle, and I wanted to share a few of my must-have baby items for those early newborn baby days.



1. Car Seat
The most important item to have before going into labor is a car seat — you can't leave the hospital with baby without one. There is no one "best" car seat, though. The right seat really depends on the kind of car you drive, how often you'll be using it in taxis/ubers/rental cars, what kind of stroller you plan to use, and your budget. To help sort through the many, many options, I highly recommend this guide. We have a Chicco KeyFit 30 — it fits well in our smaller cars, it's compatible with a lot of strollers, and it's not crazy expensive.

2. Diapers, Wipes, and Diaper Cream
Eat, sleep, poop — that's basically what a newborn's day consists of. Let's talk about the poop side of the equation first. You will need diapers, either disposable or reusable cloth. If you go the cloth diaper route, bravo! I never had it in me to do that, though, and Graydon wore Pampers until he was potty trained. This time around, I want to be a bit more environmentally friendly, so I'm switching to Babyganics diapers. I am a big fan of Babyganics products (including their diaper cream), and the diapers are soft, have a wetness indicator (a necessity as far as I'm concerned), and are chlorine, latex, petroleum, and fragrance free. For cleaning up a messy baby, Costco's Kirkland brand wipes are the best I have used.

3. Footed Rompers
Tiny baby clothes are so irresistible, amirite? It is so tempting to buy all the mini sweaters, jeans, tutus, and dresses, but all you really need for the first several months are footed one-piece jumpsuits/rompers. Seriously, the fewer pieces you have to put on a newborn, the better. As a stylist, I resisted this at first, but trust me — keep it simple and pick up a bunch of these babies. I love the global-inspired prints at Tea Collection, but there are also great options at Target, Old Navy, Carters, BabyGap, and basically anywhere else you can buy baby clothes.

4. Stroller
Just like the carseat, the kind of stroller you need depends on several factors, including lifestyle, how many kids you plan to have (and how close together you plan to have them), and budget. Strollers can be very expensive, with some higher end models starting at more than $1,000, but there are plenty of budget-friendly options that offer lots of features. We have a now-discontinued Baby Jogger City Versa and love it, but if I was buying a stroller now I would get the City Select Lux. It converts from a single to a double stroller, so it's ideal for a growing family. However, I am seriously considering getting a jogging stroller this time around — I have my eye on the Baby Jogger Summit X3 or Bumbleride Speed.

5. Swing/Bouncer
Not all babies like swings/bouncers — my first kid couldn't stand any of the ones we bought/borrowed for him — but I have heard amazing things about the 4Moms mamaRoo and I'm excited to try it with this new babe. It's a high-tech infant seat, used in more than 350 maternity wards, NICUs, and pediatric units across the U.S. to soothe newborns, so it must be good. The price is a little steep, but I got mine used through a local mom-to-mom group at a fraction of the retail price.

6. Bottles
Remember that eat, sleep, poop equation from earlier? When it comes to the eating part, I honestly believe that FED IS BEST. There is so much pressure on moms to breastfeed, which is awesome if it works out! I was super lucky that breastfeeding went well for me* the first time around, but I wanted to go back to work, so that meant giving bottles. It took some serious trial and error to find one that my kid would actually take, so when we found the Comotomo baby bottle it felt like a miracle. This bottle is seriously great, though — the shape of the nipple mimics an actual breast, it doesn't have a million weird parts so it's easy to clean, and the design is on point. 
*Even though breastfeeding went well, pumping was always a challenge for me, so I had to supplement with formula. I beat myself up about it, needlessly — my kid was fine. Just remember, fed is best!

7. Bassinet/Crib/Bedding
Now for the final piece of the equation - sleep! Your baby will need somewhere to sleep, whether it's a crib in the nursery or a bassinet in your bedroom. I love the styling of the Babyletto Lolly crib, and unlike pricier cribs, it actually comes with everything needed to convert it to a toddler bed. (These sheets would be so darling with this crib — I adore a well-designed monochromatic nursery!) If you want to go the bassinet route, I love the clean, modern lines and breathable mesh sides of the Baby Bjorn cradle, but you also can't go wrong with a Pack 'n' Play or Rock 'n' Play.

8. Swaddle Blankets
There is nothing sweeter than a swaddled newborn — especially if that swaddle helps said newborn sleep! Muslin swaddle blankets also make fantastic car seat covers, nursing covers, play blankets, scarves, blanket forts, and more, so you really can't have too many of these babies. I adore the gorgeous prints from Little Unicorn and Clementine Kids, and you can find so many great swaddles at the Spearmint Love shop.

9. Baby Carrier/Wrap
Last but not least, having some sort of wrap/baby carrier is key. Even if you don't plan on getting dressed or leaving the house, having your hands free to do things like eat, let the dog out, go pee, wrangle your toddler, etc. without having to put your baby down is so helpful. I prefer a wrap for wearing a tiny newborn and a soft structured carrier for an older baby. Solly Baby makes gorgeous wraps, and it's a super-cool, woman-owned company, which is always a bonus! I also had an Ergobaby original carrier the first time around, but I recently sold it (thanks, local mom-to-mom group!) and upgraded to the new Ergobaby Omni 360 carrier. It has four carry positions and can be used with babies as little as 7 lbs. without an additional infant insert. I can't wait to try it with this new baby!

2.07.2018

countdown to baby: hospital go-bag packing list

I am 37 weeks pregnant today, officially full-term! Baby could arrive any day now! Graydon was born exactly one week before his due date, and I was completely unprepared. This time, rather than throwing together a hospital go-bag in between contractions, I started prepping all the essentials ahead of time. Everything is basically packed and ready to go, minus a few last minute things that I use day-to-day. Here's a peek inside my bag, with a full packing list below!



Hospital Bag Packing List

For Mom:
1. Flip-flops/Slippers
2. Cozy Socks
3. Nursing Bra/Nursing Pads
4. Nursing Pajamas/Robe
5. Underwear*
6. Maxi Pads
7. Going Home Outfit**
8. Toothbrush/Toothpaste
9. Shampoo/Conditioner/Dry Shampoo
10. Bobby Pins/Hair Ties/Headband
11. Deoderant
12. Contact Case/Solution
13. Glasses
14. Lip Balm
15. Hand Lotion
16. Nipple Cream
17. Face Wash/Moisturizer
18. Makeup
19. Any other toiletries you need to feel human
20. Saltines/Rice Cakes***
21. Wallet/I.D./Insurance Card

Notes
*You will be wearing pads for at least a month after baby is born, so invest in some cheap, comfy undies, like these.
**Your body will still look about 6 months pregnant when you leave the hospital, so pack maternity clothes.
***Immediately after Graydon was born, I couldn't keep anything down except super mild, easily digested snacks. I will be forever grateful to my mother-in-law for showing up at the hospital with Saltines.

For Baby:
1. Diapers/Wipes
2. Swaddle Blankets
3. Hat
4. Going Home Outfit
5. Sibling Gift (a little something to give your older kid/s, from the new baby)

For Your Partner:
1. Toiletries (toothbrush, deoderant, glasses, etc.)
2. Extra Clothes
3. Slippers/Flip Flops
4. Pillow/Blanket
5. Wallet/I.D./Insurance Card
6. List of people to call when baby arrives

Tech/Misc.
1. Cell Phones (loaded with music, apps, etc.)
2. Camera
3. Chargers for all devices
4. Magazines/Other light reading
5. Gift/Thank You for nurses

For the Car:
1. Infant Car Seat
2. Towel/Trash Bags (to sit on in case water breaks en route to the hospital)

2.02.2018

friday favorites

We are officially in the final countdown to baby — due date February 28!!! I had what is (probably) my last shoot before maternity leave earlier this week, the nursery is almost ready, the baby clothes are washed and put away, and it feels like this little guy could be here any day now! Before life turns into nothing but babybabybabybaby, I wanted to take a quick minute to share a few of my favorite things right now. 



I know I'm late to the party with Living Proof, but I picked up this travel set for myself when I was Christmas shopping, and OMG this stuff is amazing. The shampoo and conditioner smell so good, and I feel like they actually clean my hair (unlike some other high-end hair care products). And the dry shampoo is a miracle, especially on mornings when I need to get Graydon out the door for preschool and I don't have time for a shower and blow dry. (Just make sure to do the dry shampoo BEFORE you get dressed so you don't look like you dusted yourself with baby powder.)

I am so excited for season two of The Handmaid's Tale (premiering April 25 on Hulu)! The first season of the show was SO GOOD, and in anticipation of the new season, I'm rereading the book for the I-don't-even-know-how-many-th time. Margaret Atwood is a genius, I can't recommend her work enough. Read it if you haven't already!!!

This candle...just one sniff is all it takes to fall in love. It smells like the lushest garden, with notes of honeysuckle, plum, rose petals, jasmine, gardenia, lily of the valley, carnation and green leaves. Each Simply Curated candle is hand poured in Grand Rapids, Mich., 100 percent phthalate-free, and the gorgeous glass vessels make great barware once the candle is done.

All of the above are awesome, but honestly, at 36 weeks pregnant, my absolute favorite thing in the world right now is getting cozy AF and going to bed. This nightgown from Target is so, so comfortable - I went up one size to accommodate my expanded belly, and it gives my more generous pregnant bust the support it needs. It's stretchy enough to pull to the side for nursing, but there is a maternity version with drop-down cups that I will probably add to my rotation once baby is here.

And speaking of being comfortable — at 36 weeks pregnant I'm definitely in the as-many-pillows-as-possible phase. I currently have five full-size pillows on my side of the bed. My main pillow, the one I lay my head on, is from Casper, and it is the Most. Comfortable. Ever. I'm obsessed with it. I normally wouldn't spend that much on a pillow, but hey, I'm pregnant, I deserve it, right?

Cheers to the weekend!

1.29.2018

back in time bridal for hour detroit

Naeem Khan gown, $8,490, and Jardin Jewelry earrings, $330, at Roma Sposa; Vintage gloves, stylist's own.

The first time I stepped inside The Peacock Room's new flagship store at the Fisher Building, the space was still under construction and very raw. But it took my breath away, nevertheless. I knew it was going to be an incredible space, and the finished product definitely lived up to expectations. When I called the owner (and total boss babe), Rachel Lutz, about shooting the Hour Detroit bridal feature in the new store, I was so thrilled she said yes! It was a dream location, the perfect setting for vintage-inspired bridal looks. It was inspired by vintage photographs of women shopping at Bergdorf Goodman, so I pulled together a collection of gowns that are modern takes on looks from the 1920s to the 1950s. I absolutely love the way this shoot turned out! See the full shoot below!

1.24.2018

heavy metal for hour detroit

Mixed Metals: Halston Heritage dress, $525, at Neiman Marcus, Somerset Collection South, Troy; 248-643-3300; neimanmarcus.com.

My first published editorial shoot for 2018 was such a dream collaboration. I'm always thrilled to work with the incredibly talented Lians Jadan, and for this shoot we also worked with Erik and Israel Nordin of the Detroit Design Center. The Nordin Brothers are known for their cutting-edge metal sculptures, and it was an honor to feature their work in this shoot. The art pieces were the inspiration for the styling — I wanted the clothing to have the same mix of hard edges and gentle curves found in the artwork. We were also so fortunate the Nordins were gracious enough to make a few custom pieces for the shoot, including the ring swing (I want one in my house) and the futuristic, space goddess headpiece that we lovingly named "the Beyonce." #SLAY

1.23.2018

nursery sneak peek!


I have been in full-blown nesting mode lately, getting everything organized for baby boy's arrival next month! His room is coming together so beautifully, it's already my favorite room in the entire house. Yesterday the new chair for his room was delivered, so I wanted to share a quick little sneak preview of the space!

1. Chair // 2. Pillow (sold out online, similar here and here // 3. Stools // 4. Clock/Nightlight

The mountain mural is by far my favorite part of the room. After we lost our baby last year, I immediately wanted to escape to the mountains, and we spent a week in the Rockies with our dear friends from Colorado. The mountains are so vast, ancient, and humbling, it truly was such a healing experience to be surrounded by their immense beauty. Two of my very sweet, amazing, talented girlfriends helped paint the mural, and it is so beautiful and holds so much meaning for me. We still have a few little things left to finish up the room, but I am so happy with how it's coming along! It is so peaceful and serene, the perfect place for middle-of-the-night nursing sessions and all the baby cuddles. I can't wait to bring this little boy home!

1.18.2018

best of 2017: fashion


One of the things that makes me happiest is my work as a fashion stylist. Work has been a refuge for me over the last year as I coped with the loss of my son – it kept me sane in so many ways. I am so grateful to have a career that feeds my soul, and I am so fortunate to work with so many talented people. Above are some of my favorite shots from 2017, from beautiful bridal to sporty menswear. To see more from these shoots, and more of my work in general, follow me on Instagram!

Top Row (l-r): Hour Detroit women's eveningwear, photo by Roy Ritchie. Hour Detroit bridal fashion, photo by Jenny Risher. Hour Detroit men's fashion featuring Detroit City FC, photo by Lians Jadan. 

Middle Row (l-r): Metro Detroit Weddings bridal accessories, photo by Brad Ziegler. Hour Detroit "Best of Detroit" magic-themed shoot, photo by Jenny Risher. Metro Detroit Weddings bridal fashion, photo by Heather Saunders.

Bottom Row (l-r): DBusiness "Executive Fashion," photo by Martin Vecchio. Metro Detroit Weddings bridal fashion, photo by Amber Marie Photography. Hour Detroit winter fashion, photo by Martin Vecchio.

1.16.2018

new year, new baby, new blog

Twenty-one weeks pregnant with my third son. Photo by Heather Saunders.

If you've been following me on Instagram for the last year and a half, you've seen that my life has been a whirlwind. Work has been busy and rewarding, Graydon just keeps getting bigger and bigger, we moved into a new house - and we've also experienced a devastating loss and the renewal of hope.

In 2016, we decided the time was right to grow our family, and after two early miscarriages we were overjoyed to find out we were expecting another baby boy, due in March 2017. We shared the good news with friends and family, Graydon was so excited to be a big brother...and then we lost the baby at 21 weeks pregnant. Words cannot describe how incredibly painful it was to lose him. It's a grief that will never go away, and not a day goes by that I don't think of him.

This past year has been all abut healing, rebuilding, starting over. Despite the pain of our loss, 2017 was a year filled with love and joy. In June I found out I was pregnant again, and our third baby, our third son, is due to arrive February 28, 2018. It has been a long journey, marked by uncertainty and anxiety, but this baby is strong and healthy, and I can't wait to welcome him into our family.

And as I prepare to welcome a new baby, I'm also looking to the future and making plans for this blog. I want this little corner of the internet to serve as a place for me to share all the things that bring joy and happiness to my life, from my beautiful family to the job that feeds my creativity, and everything in between. I am so grateful for all the wonderful things in my life, and I'm excited for what the future will bring.

The last year and a half has been a wild ride, but I feel like the adventure is just beginning.