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This post was created in partnership with Capital One.

Maybe it’s rooted in my deep affection for a fresh yearly day planner and ripping the first sheet off a crisp new calendar, but I love this time year when we get to reflect on what we’ve accomplished and start setting goals for the New Year. With my birthday the first week of the year, I always give myself a free pass on resolutions until the day after my celebrations end (which helps me from fumbling on those fitness and health goals!). This year, with baby B due in that same first week, I’m pretty aware that the impending storm of chaos and exhaustion may make that timing difficult in 2017. Instead of putting this important resetting period on the back burner, I had the opportunity thanks to Capital One to get started a little bit early this year on planning for a fresh start.
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Less than 3-weeks left until the presents need to be wrapped and under the tree! I cooked up another fun gift guide this week with the procrastinator in mind. Everything on this list is Prime-Eligible on Amazon, so even if you wait until the last minute you can still steal these gift ideas and have them delivered in time! I love the idea of gift theme, and built out eight fun ideas based on a book, with little add-on gifts to go with each one. From co-workers to couples to families, there’s a little something for everyone — check out the ideas below!amazon-book-based-gift-guide read more

It’s been 8 weeks since my last bump update, and which is a testament to how life seems to be flying by lately. Part of me feels like I’ve been pregnant forever. I look down at that app on my phone and see the days count down though (oh gosh, five weeks and a few days to go!) and I’m absolutely amazed at how time is passing by so quickly in this stage. And with that, a few updates! img_6105_edited-1 read more

Back in October, I had the opportunity to take an interesting class at Society of Grown-Ups about creating spending plans that aligned to our values and priorities. The class gave me some great tools to help with planning for our finances, but it also did something else: challenged me to actually think about my values and priorities. On our road-trip down to New York this past weekend for Thanksgiving I was tired and opted to close my laptop, ignore my inbox and to-do-list, and crack open a new book instead – Emily Ley’s Grace, Not Perfection. Digging into this fresh read brought me back to that Society of Grown-Ups class in the early-fall, discussing a lot of the same topics. Between the start of the holidays, a busy period at my day-job, the busiest time of year for my blog projects, and oh yea, an impending baby on the way in just 6-weeks, this topic felt so timely and important during a hectic period of life. It gave me a little spark of inspiration to take a moment to reflect on just that: gratitude for what matters most to me.img_6134_b read more

Can I brag for just one second? I finished my Christmas shopping early on Black Friday with a few last online purchases, all from the comfort of my bed. With the baby due in just 6 weeks I was determined to get all of my shopping done early to reduce holiday stress! I also wanted have things wrapped up (literally) in case baby girl makes an early arrival.  So while I wait for my UPS guy to stack up boxes on the front steps, I thought I’d share the love and help out my readers with their gift-giving-lists!  I’ve rounded up 50 fun gift ideas, all under $50 (and many under $25!) for just about everyone. Check out my ideas below for travel-lovers, techies, co-workers, hostesses, and all the guys and gals on your list. gifts-under-50-for-the-traveler read more

I’ve purchased a car, I’ve purchased a house, and yet the research I feel like I’ve done for purchasing baby products has seemed to be one of the more daunting grown-up tasks. When it came to looking for a car seat and stroller I was super intimidated and overwhelmed with all of the information out there! After tons of research and “test-driving” some of the models in person, we ended up selecting a Chicco Bravo Travel System. A big priority for me, being super-petite, was a system I could easily fold-up, carry, and feel comfortable pushing around. I also really liked the idea of buying something that was one full-system so that everyone worked together seamlessly and grew with the baby over time. img_5354 read more

The high of the baby shower is starting to fade (can we do that every weekend?) and I’m currently staring at a large wall of boxes and gifts bags filled to the brim with baby gear, clothes, and gifts that I’m trying to figure out where we’re going to put! Registering was so much fun for the baby, but admittedly a little overwhelming too given all of the choices out there! While the experience is still fresh in mind, I thought it would be helpful to share a few thoughts on the various places I considered building our baby registry, and where we ended up registering. There were so many pros and cons to each site, and I ended up being happy with our choice to put the majority of our registry items on Amazon, with a few speciality items on a universal registry service like Babylistimg_5570-1 read more

When I was in NYC at a blogger event a few weeks ago, I had the best time chatting with fellow bloggers about all of the ups and downs of blog-life. Whenever I get the chance to network with bloggers I have the best time — it’s a rare chance to get to pick the brains of others with similar challenges in writing content, making it a business, and figuring out how to manage it all with the other parts of our lives. One topic that we were discussing was all of the different ways we plan for our blog content and after hearing ideas from a few other creative ladies, I realized that this just might be a topic worth sharing here with some of my own tips and tricks that I’ve picked up over almost 8 years of blogging (yikes! I’m a blogger dinosaur!). Stay with me guys, it turns out I had a lot to say on this topic! img_5440 read more

Last night I had the opportunity to attend one of Society of Grown-Ups‘ pop-up classes in Cambridge. I’ve been to previous classes and they’re awesome — it’s an approachable way to learn and talk about some of the not-so-fun grown-up topics (like personal finances, fun!). The class I took last night was all about spending plans and better ways to budget to meet your needs and goals. I loved that the class was super interactive — since many of the attendees were other bloggers, we had a lot in common when it came to budgeting for our businesses, the perils of wanting to buy all of the things we see on Pinterest, and how living in an expensive city like Boston can impact our spending plans! I feverishly took notes on all of the advice that the instructor shared, as well as some of the great tips from the fellow attendees who shared what works for them (like apps they’ve used to track spending and ideas for saving in just about every way imaginable!). I thought it would be helpful to share a few of the tips that really resonated with me, in the hopes that they just might be helpful for you too: img_5369 read more

I’ll admit, I was a little bit nervous when I posted my first entry in this new series. I wasn’t sure how people would react introducing this new part of my life into the content here. I did notice a few followers drop off from Instagram when I jumped into the topic, but overall I found it was some of the most engaging conversations I’ve had on blog posts in a long time! So, the verdict is the bump diary posts will continue — both for my own love of recording all of phases of life (seriously, I found a box of dozens of my journals in my parents attic when they were moving houses this summer!), and for the every so helpful advice and comments I’ve gotten from sharing my pregnancy journey here and on social media. The past five weeks have zoomed by faster than I can could have imagined, which brings many new changes and updates on my ever-growing bump! img_5099 read more