Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Vote for a Cutie

You all know this cutie right here…

My brother in law has joked that I have turned my nephew into a celebrity by putting his cuteness on my blog (I appreciate that my brother in law thinks I have that kind of power!). Now’s your chance to help turn him into a real celebrity.

This fab photo (above) of my nephew getting excited about eating solid foods is in the running to become a weekly winner with Parents Magazine for their Cover Contest. If selected as the weekly winner, my sister and her awesome family will win $250 and have the chance to be included on a cover of an upcoming issue. How cool is that? Admit it; you all get just as excited about eating as my little bug does. He sure knows what’s good; he loves any fruit and he gobbles up Mac and Cheese with veggies (all pureed of course! The kid has to start somewhere).

You can all help turn him into a celebrity. All it takes is a quick click to this link on the Parents Magazine site to vote. You only have to answer a simple question which they give you the answer to – so it’s the easiest thing ever! And click the link every day between now and May 5 as you can cast a vote each day.

My sister and I would greatly appreciate your assistance. I mean, what else are you going to do at work besides browse twitter and vote for my cutie of a nephew? Kidding!

But seriously, get to voting, because you don’t want to make my nephew look like this do you?

 Thanks everyone! We appreciate the help!

Two Tips Tuesday


Looking for an awesome link up with other fashionable ladies who love accessories? Then link up with me and Emily from A Devine Life this coming Thursday, May 2. We are hosting a “What’s Your Favorite Accessory?” link up. We want to know what your favorite accessory is (obvi!) and see how you style it. All you have to do is write a post talking about your favorite accessory in whatever way you choose, then link up here or at A Devine Life on Thursday. Oh and tell your friends! The more people who know about it the better. And if you don't have a blog, then just be sure to come back here on Thursday and hopefully get tons of inspiration from all of the people who link up their accessories.

Feel free to grab the button above to use in your blog post. The official grab code is to your left in my side bar. Can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with.

(Or if you want me to make it really easy for you, use this grab code here:
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If you are pregnant, have I got a really fun ultrasound option to tell you about. Yes, the 2D profile pictures that you receive from your doctor are terrific. But you know what is really great? A 3D ultra sound where you actually get to see your baby’s face! Tolar and I had our 3D ultra sound appointment over the weekend and we had a blast. Now this is an optional ultrasound and not performed at your doctor’s office; its more for fun than anything. We used InfantSee 3D/4D in Fairfax, VA and really enjoyed it. They have a huge theatre room that can hold up to eight people (it was just Tolar and myself though, which was still really cool). The room is dark, like you are going into a movie and they have really cushy couches for everyone to sit on. And the bed for mama to be is so awesome! This was not an exam table, but a nice comfortable bed fit for a queen with plenty of padding. Directly in front of the bed is a huge screen where everyone can watch the baby and see the ultra sound in 3D. It is recommended to go around 30 weeks of your pregnancy and I was 29 weeks, so perfect timing. We got to see our baby smile, blink and suck her thumb! She would not let go of her thumb or her feet. She is definitely a sucker! (Uh oh, I was a thumb sucker; Tolar and I will have our hands full with this one!) The package we purchased included printed photos of baby girl, a DVD of the entire experience and a recorded heartbeat - I love how cool technology is these days. It was such a surreal experience seeing my baby’s face and getting a better glimpse at what she will look like. She definitely has my little stubby nose. We can’t wait to meet her in just a couple short months, especially after this fun appointment. I recommend googling 3D/4D ultrasounds in your area if you are interested.

And I’d like to wish a very special Happy Anniversary to my two awesome parents. Their marriage has been such an inspiration to Tolar and myself. I’m so honored to have parents who have loved each other for more than 30 years! Love you Mom and Dad!!!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Pregnancy Update - Week 29

How far along: 29 weeks

Thoughts: Mid July seems so close when I think about all we still have left to prepare for baby girl…are we ready to be parents??? But Mid July also seems so far away when I think of how much larger I am going to get. But no matter what, I am so ready to snuggle my sweet baby girl.

Advice: I’ve been getting a lot of advice from my sister lately about breast feeding and schedules, I simply have no idea where to start! I’m so thankful and happy that my sister is going through it all now so she can teach me everything she knows. And she has been awesome at answering every. single. question. Also, my sweet friend Courtney lent me the Baby Whisperer and I cannot wait to start reading it (hopefully this week!); Courtney and her husband Dane already have their 7 week old baby sleeping 7-8 hours!

Baby: She weighs 2 and a half pounds and is roughly the size of a butternut squash; measuring over 15 inches long from head to heel. According to my Baby Center app, her head is growing bigger to make room for her developing brain. I’m so happy to read about her developing brain, but I’m fearful of the size of her head. Both Tolar and I have HUGE heads, so we know this little girl has no chance of a normal sized one.

Movement: Home girl has been so active lately. One day last week she kicked me nearly all day long. I love to feel it because it lets me know she is growing. Tolar has been able to feel her kick almost every time I grab his hand and we even have seen my belly move whenever she kicks.

Sleep: Still not sleeping well and I know it’s only going to get worse. I constantly flip from side to side because I’m so uncomfortable and occasionally my left leg will go numb. My doctor says that I can prop myself up to sleep so I somewhat resemble laying on my back, although I’m sitting up more than anything. That has seemed to help.

Food: If the pictures above don’t prove it, I don’t know what will – but I have had QUITE the sweet tooth lately. Milkshakes, ice cream, candy, cookies you name it I want it. I MUST get a handle on this sweet tooth.

Preparing for baby: Baby girl’s closet is full! I’m talking clothes on both racks. Me, my sister, my mom, my mother in law and a friend from work have all filled that closet to the brim. Also, this weekend I taped the chevron wall in the nursery and Tolar painted (tutorial coming soon!). Now that the painting is complete, I feel like the nursery is really coming together. The bedding should arrive in a couple weeks and I am constantly looking for décor to add. My sister and mom are throwing me my first shower in two weeks and I am super excited! Can’t wait to reunite with old friends and family.

Prayer request: I simply ask that you pray for our baby girl to continue to grow and be a super healthy baby. Thanks in advance for praying for us!

And while you all in the pregnancy/baby spirit, go check out Still Being Molly as I’m giving away a $25 LOFT gift card on her blog today. She’s a fab mama to be herself, only 4 weeks behind me!


To continue your hopping around the internet, please pop on over to Life’s A Journey and meet Colleen. This is one special lady with a heart completely devoted to Jesus. Colleen and I first “met” when we were paired up for the Fall Favorites Swap and we were both equally as thrilled to learn that the other was a Christian. And this lady is a true inspiration living out a God first life! She has said so herself that she loves people that others find hard to love. Wow! Just reading that sentence makes me want to be a better person. We all need a little Colleen in our lives.

Whenever I first visit a new blog, I always check out their About Me page and Colleen’s definitely shows you just how big her heart for Jesus and inner city children really is. She is so amazing, quite the person to look up to. I can only wish to be half as compassionate of a person as Colleen is. You must read this post that Colleen wrote about a 13 year old boy that she once worked with. My heart breaks for him and for her (read the post to get the whole story) and I absolutely am joining Colleen in prayer that this young boy realizes there is so much more for him in this life.

And another post to really illustrate what an inspiration and true gift that Colleen is to this earth and the inner city kids is this fab post about her kitchen window. Just reading through it makes me want to pull up a chair beside her and enjoy fun conversations with all of her kids who seek solace in her house. I can guarantee that you will be lifted up reading through Life’s A Journey. Her faith is amazing and completely contagious. Go check it out today!

Friday, April 26, 2013

High Five For Friday

Happy end of the week to you all! You all know by know that I live for the weekend so obviously I’m happy it’s here. I am such a broken record, but its true!

Here are my top five moments from the week.

1.) Our Artistic Director for the theatre where I work received a British Honor this week (Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire – approved by the Queen!). The British Embassy held a ceremony and reception in his honor and I got to attend. The Ambassador’s Residence was beautiful and extremely breathtaking. Here’s me and my lovely friend Emily enjoying the beautiful garden before the festivities began.

2.) Baby Girl (her nickname on Tolar’s side is Murphy) has so many clothes already and my mother in law tells me she’s getting more!

3.) Tolar’s best friend Matt came into town for a very brief visit and the guys went to the Nationals vs. the Cardinals baseball game. It warms my heart to know that Tolar has such awesome genuine friends and I was also happy that he got a day to relax.

4.) I saw this quote on facebook and I really liked it. The quote will take on new meaning in the delivery room; I can assure you there will be A LOT of praying.

5.) Isn’t this the CUTEST outfit ever? Matt (from #3) works for Disney and bought this sweet little Minnie Mouse outfit for baby girl. He even got the Minnie ears embroidered!

I hope everyone had a great week and has an even better weekend. I’m linking up with Lauren from Lauren Elizabeth for this High Five For Friday post.

(Also linking up for That Friday Blog Hop and Follow Friend Friday)

Thursday, April 25, 2013

April Group Giveaway

I have a true treat for all of you! It is time for the April Group Giveaway and tons of my sponsors have teamed up to giveaway some awesome prizes for one lucky Pursuit of Pink reader. All of these prizes just for one person? I wish I could win this thing! Check out all the prizes and sponsors below and enter using as many options as you wish. Good luck everyone!!!

(If you want to participate in a future giveaway, click my sponsor page for options on how you can get involved in this amazingness.)

Here is what's up for grabs!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wore: Polka Dots and Florals

Pattern Mixing is something I absolutely love! I will admit that it took me awhile to try it because I was sure people would think I got dressed in the dark. But after looking through my closet and trying to find new inspiration out of everything I already owned I decided to completely embrace pattern mixing. As I said in this post, the secret to testing out pattern mixing is to find similar yet slightly different patterns. Another tip is to find colors that complement each other (i.e. neutrals with a pop of color).

You’ll see here that I paired polka dots with a floral print. I love that because of the neutral black and white floral top the red polka dot tank really pops (and so does my bump!). By pairing the neutral with a bold color I don’t look like I’m four years old and my mom finally let me pick out my own clothes. Although I sure do love when I see children who obviously dressed themselves! Such creativity – which is what personal style is all about.

And I have recently found that pairing polka dots and floral prints is a new obsession of mine. I also have a very colorful floral cardigan that I like to pair with a black and white polka dot tank. Again, keeping a neutral with a pop of color.

For those of you tracking my baby bump progress, yep my belly is definitely out there. Luckily I haven’t had any strangers come up and touch my belly, yet. I’m waiting on that moment. Although as you can tell from recent What I Wore posts, I wear a lot of black which probably keeps people wondering if I’m pregnant or not. Oops, not exactly what I want people to ponder. This outfit though leaves no room to guess, there is definitely a baby in there and I’m so excited!

Pencil Skirt and Floral Blouse: LOFT. Tank: Old Navy. Shoes: Payless. Earrings: Target.
I’m linking up with Style Elixir for Style Sessions, The Pleated Poppy for What I Wore Wednesday and Because Shanna Said So for Random Wednesdays.


Have you checked out Ashley over at Sweetpea Lifestyle yet? If not, why don't you head over there right now?! And definitely get your cute butt over there if you read this blog because of things pink and sparkly because Ashley has the same love!

Sweetpea Lifestyle is a great place to go to find yummy recipes, craft and DIY how tos, organization tips and tons of outfit inspiration. Her pictures are so pretty to look through as well; I just love a blog with good pictures and illustrations!  It really makes the whole experience that much better, don’t ya think? One of my favorite posts is her 10 minute craft dash. She created a beautiful card using only items she already had on hand in just 10 minutes – genius. Everyone has 10 minutes to make a pretty project, so check it out!

And Ashley definitely has the eye for creating pretty party themes/decorations. Like this Mason Jar Themed Wedding Shower – its adorable. I’m sure these pictures are all over Pinterest (if not, get to pinning now). I love when you see party themes created out of items you probably already have in your house but never thought to use them in a certain way. And Mason Jars can be really pretty, simple decorations. I’ve been to my fair share of parties with candles in Mason Jars and they are ALWAYS a hit!

One final post you MUST check out on Sweetpea Lifestyle is the Desk Organization project. Seriously the before and after photos are amazing. A nice, clean and orderly work space is a must for me (ok, you caught me: a nice, clean and orderly HOUSE is what I really love). Her tips on how to clean out your stuff and organize everything are so helpful. I’m sure after reading this you will all be ready to Sort, Clean and Organize every space that needs a little sprucing up! And one other thing, Ashley is launching her first ebook called “Successful Entertaining” very soon. Look for more details on the blog very soon!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Beautiful You

Over the weekend, I attended a women’s conference called Beautiful You and I had an amazing time! I tell you I came home fired up! I apologize in advance if this post turns long, there was just so much goodness that came out of the two day conference.

Some girls from our women's group: Kristina, Julie, Me, Jade, Amber and Lisette.

The conference was put on by Capital City Church here in D.C. and featured some amazing speakers all focusing on teaching women to raise ONE voice. They encouraged us to always have compassion and love and to be the change for the hurting humanity around us.  We heard from some very powerful and moving speakers:
-Donna Pisani, Co-Pastor of Capital City Church
-Dr. DeeDee Freeman, speaker, author and wife of Pastor Mike Freeman from Spirit of Faith Christian Center
-Lisa Bevere, speaker, author and founder of Messenger International

I was super excited to hear Lisa Bevere speak because the Women’s Group that I lead each week is reading through her book Girls With Swords. And Lisa did NOT disappoint. If you follow me on twitter, you probably saw me tweeting up a storm, sharing some inspirational quotes that Lisa said throughout her session. The most important thing I took away from her message and from Girls With Swords is that we as women are threats to the enemy and under attack, it isn’t just a man’s world. God is raising us up to fight for good. The most powerful quote of the night was when Lisa said “The attacks on your life have more to do with who you might be in the future than who you have been in the past.” God and the enemy believe in us for GOOD!
(apologies for the grainy quality in some photos - bad blogger, I only had my phone with me!)

Donna Pisani inspired us to be heard, but to also listen to others and help them be heard. So often, we as women can believe lies that we are just _________ (fill in the black). Just a girl. Just a wife. Just a friend. Just a mom. But God intended us to be so much more, He created us for greatness. Donna ended her session by giving all of the ladies in attendance a can that we can fill with change. She encouraged us to use this can to be the change in someone’s life. We can use the change can to support a cause we want to raise up, if we are raising money trying to help a financially strapped friend, if we want to help the homeless but never have change when they ask, whatever we want. During the conference she asked us all to take out some change and put it in the can of the girl sitting next to us. Then she had us all stand up and shake our cans in unison. It was such an awesome sound to hear all of these women raising their voices together in such a unique way. I’m so excited to partner with God to fill my change can for something good. I haven’t figured out what I’m going to do with my change can yet, but I do know I’m going to fill it.

My favorite speaker from the conference was Dr. DeeDee Freeman. The lady is real! She has such an awesome way of speaking that makes you laugh A LOT, but makes you want to stand up beside her and get on board with everything she says.  She shared a story from when her son was 16 years old and got messed up in the wrong crowd and got wrongfully arrested for attempted murder. When DeeDee and her family went to go see her son and saw him handcuffed, both DeeDee and her husband lost it. They couldn’t believe this was happening to their son, they didn’t know what to do. She said that her oldest daughter came over to them while they were a crying mess and yelled at them “What are you doing? Why are you doing this? You didn’t teach us to cower and cry, you taught us to believe in God and always have faith!” Of course her story was longer than what I type, but you get the picture. I was in tears as she told this story. All I could think was that I want to live my life that way; live a life where I model for my children that God is good, He is faithful, He will always protect us. I want my children to yell at me one day that I should stop crying and have faith in God. After all, He is all we need!
(again, shame on me for the quality of these pictures!)

As you can tell I was moved by each speaker and really enjoyed my time. We also were treated to multiple worship sessions , time to connect with our girlfriends and we got to listen to a Men’s Panel give their perspective on relationships. I am already excited to attend next year – they have a great line up of speakers again! If you want to learn more about the conference, click this link to go to their official website. You can sign up online and attend even if you don’t live in D.C. I’ll be there and I plan to invite tons of friends to join me!

Monday, April 22, 2013

I Love Bloglovin' Link Up

Hi everyone! I'm so excited to be a co-host for the I Love Bloglovin' Link Up. If you have your own blog, link up below (just click the blue "add your link" button). If you don't have a blog, but love checking out new blogs then scroll to the bottom and start discovering some of the awesome blogs from the list. And most importantly have fun!

In order to help bloggers transition away from GFC as the main way to follow blogs, Northern Belle Diaries and Postcards from Rachel have teamed up to host I Love Bloglovin'.

Now, let's get this party started!

Have an image of yourself ready so we have your pretty face to look at!

Friday, April 19, 2013

High Five For Friday

I’m super excited the weekend is here! I’m attending my very first conference, called Beautiful You! This is a Christian women’s conference happening here in D.C. and I am super excited to learn from awesome women who put God first in their life. But before I start my amazing weekend, check out the top five moments from my week.

1.) In case you missed the announcement in yesterday’s post, I’m hosting an Accessory link up with Emily from A Devine Life on May 2. We want to know what your favorite accessory is, so start thinking about it, get your post ready and link up right back here on May 2.

2.) Since the almost 90 degree heat scorched my tulips out front of my house, I decided to bring some fresh tulips inside. I just love spring and pretty tulips.

3.) This little bug has been sick all week, but my sister tells me his temperature is down and he’s feeling much better. That makes my heart happy.

4.) Tolar and I had two different doctor appointments in the same morning, so we got to have a fun Panera breakfast date in between appointments.

5.) We finally decided on a travel system (car seat/stroller combo) and it arrived this week. I’m so excited, I feel like we bought a new car! We went with the Britax B Agile system and have heard such great things from friends who have the same one. I can’t wait to be able to push our baby girl around in it!

Wishing everyone an awesome weekend!

I’m linking up with Lauren over at Lauren Elizabeth for this High Five For Friday post.

I’d love for you all to meet Beth from Hang On, Honey. The girl is fabulous, inspirational and quite hilarious – do you honestly need anything else? I for sure have a blogger crush on the girl. I love her blog title, she says it best: “One thing is certain: Twenty-Something is a whirlwind of changes and joys and trials and triumphs…so Hang on, Honey.” Brilliant!

Beth began her blog to hold herself accountable for her journey to a fit life and I absolutely love her honesty and dedication. I can’t wait to join her to get some of my baby weight off! But besides fitness and weight loss the girl offers up such great thoughts on life and shares some awesome moments of her own fab life. For those of you who live with a boy, you will laugh out loud at her post about living with her fiancé (man child). I think I just read a post that I could have easily written myself!

And on to those great thoughts on life, check out what Beth has to say about taking care of yourself. She is wise behind her years I tell ya! And I’m completely ready to join her for an all out jam session in the car while sitting at a traffic light. One other thing you must check out when visiting Hang On, Honey is the story about how Beth asked her fiancé out first. The story is incredibly cute – go girl, get your man!!! If you absolutely cannot get enough of the awesomeness that is on her blog, you MUST check her out on twitter. I probably favorite every other tweet of hers because I either feel like I would say what she just did or because she makes me laugh out loud all the time. Seriously, Beth please call me when you visit D.C. I want to be your new best friend!!! 

Thursday, April 18, 2013

April Birchbox Plus An Announcement!

My April Birchbox arrived and I have to say, this one was just ok. I sure hope as I use the products more I enjoy everything more. Don’t get me wrong, I love Birchbox in fact I’ve purchased products from their store before because I loved the samples I received in my monthly box. And of course I love receiving a box full of monthly beauty samples, I just renewed my subscription for another year! To get your very own Birchbox, click this link.

For the month of April, Birchbox teamed up with Women’s Health magazine to create a box to help us fine tune our lifestyle. The theme of the box was “tiny tweaks, BIG results.” And I believe in this philosophy too, a little bit each day can really pay off in the end; whether that be a few minutes in the sun each day, slathering your skin with moisturizer or taking a power nap. Adding all of these little things up can breed excellent results.

So here’s what came in my box this month:

1.) Caudalie Divine Oil – This is supposed to give your hair, skin and nails a gorgeous glow. I can’t wait to smooth a little dab of this over my hair and check out the results.
2.) Beauty Protector, Protect & Detangle spray – I could definitely use a detangler for days after I curl my hair. It never fails, after I wash my hair I always get tangles when combing it out. This will come in quite handy!
3.) Mirenesse Glossy Kiss Lipstick – I am pretty excited about this; it’s a lip pencil that can also double as a blush color when you are in a pinch. The color may be a bit too red for me, but we shall see.
4.) Lifestyle Extra: Hail Merry Chocolate Macaroons – It seems a little odd to get macaroons in a beauty box, but every girl loves a little treat now and then. These macaroons are vegan, gluten-free and totally organic.
5.) Supergoop! Advanced SPF 37 Anti-Aging Eye Cream – I’m not gonna lie, as my age starts creeping up there, I feel it is very important to use anti-aging cream to help prevent wrinkles. Lucky for me I have had oily skin my whole life so wrinkles haven’t appeared yet. I guess there is a payoff for oily skin after all.

Do you have your own subscription to Birchbox? Did you enjoy this Women’s Health box?  Leave me a comment below telling me your favorite product. And if you have any questions about Birchbox, feel free to leave any and all thoughts/questions below.

And now for the announcement...

If you have been around these parts at all you know that I LOVE accessories. I feel like accessories can take an outfit from blah to wow. And I certainly hope you all agree. Which is why I have teamed up with the lovely Emily from over at A Devine Life to bring you the "What's Your Favorite Accessory" link up.

That's right lovelies, we want to know what your favorite accessory is and how you like to style it. So start thinking about it, get your pictures ready, prepare your post and then stop by my blog or Emily's blog on Thursday, May 2 and link up with us! It's going to be awesome and you don't want to miss out on that do you?