. . . for Lauren and Lauren: February 2013

February 28, 2013


I confess that this is the first pair of full panel maternity pants I've worn and I love them.  I don't understand why some women try not to buy or wear maternity clothes.  They are SO comfortable and were only $10! 

blazer: tjmaxx     maternity pants: h & m     boots: target

I confess that I always want to pin these healthy dessert recipes but then I click on the recipe and see ingredients like agave syrup, raw cashews and cacoa nibs?  Nevermind.  I'll stick with my cheap, known unhealthy ingredients.  

Like this dessert that I want to make.  Hey it does have bananas in it? Healthy right? 

I confess that I want to buy everything on groopdealz.  I just bought this necklace yesterday and can't wait to get it. 


I confess that I just finished re-watching all of the Hills episodes and am a little sad that it is over.  However, I won't miss watching their rich tan selves and all their vacations. 

I confess that I know our sweet baby's gender!!  We just have to tell Chris' parents and I will share it with you! 

I am ready to go shopping! 

And I confess that I already have a little. 

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!


February 27, 2013

My shopping routine

dres: kohls    tights: jcpenney ($2)  boots: dsw   cardigan: kohls(?)

I was happily surprised at all of the questions asked in this post! Enough that I am going to break them apart into different posts.  Thank you for amusing me and helping with some blog post topics. I figured I'd answer some of the shopping/fashion ones first.   

1. What is your shopping routine? How do you decide what to buy? 

I usually shop at Target, Old Navy and Kohls.  I just about always walk straight the clearance section and rarely buy something that isn't on sale.  I wrote a post before about my $15 rule.  Unless it is something that I've really been wanting for awhile or will get a LOT of use out of I don't buy it if it is more than that. I have started learning in the last year or so that sometimes it's better to buy something higher quality for a little more money.  But I am still mostly a fan of clearance items, especially when it comes to trendy things like polka dot pants.  

Not always, but SO many times when I see something full price at one of the stores that I want, within a few weeks it is on clearance.  See I am patient in some things? 

2. What colored tights do you wear with a white dress? 

Besides the maroon tights I'm wearing in today's outfit, I've also worn this white dress with blue tights.  I've worn it with black leggings too, but I really think most colors would work! 

3. Do you really wear the outfits each day?  Do you ever take multiple photos of different outfits on the same day? 

About 95% of the time yes I wear the outfit I posted.  I don't usually wear the outfit I posted that day, as I plan my posts a few days ahead of time.  I think there has been about four or five times I've tried on a few outfits on a weekend and took pictures of them.  Ideally this would be a great idea and way to plan ahead.  The problem is when it comes down to the days the coming week I often don't want to wear the outfit I had "planned" and want to post outfits that I actually wear.
4. What is the most expensive item you've purchased? 

I bought my favorite boots at DSW last year and I think they cost around $45.  I even debated about buying them, but as I'm sure you know I wear them ALL the time so they were well worth it. I also spent about $50 on my fringe boots this year.  

5. Do you plan out your outfits out before you wear them? 

I really should do this because I spend too much time in the morning trying on clothes.  And it's in the dark because Chris is still sleeping.  But I never have a desire to try on clothes and choose an outfit the night before.  

6.  What is your favorite item in your closet? 

Besides those tan boots, I love my chambray shirt.  It is probably one of the few things I've paid full price for.  I also love my denim leggings. I feel like that are thick enough that I can get away with wearing a long tunic with them.  I'm sure this changes by seasons, but I can't even think about what my summer clothes are.  

7.  Do you have a monthly clothing budget? 

Multiple people asked this question.  Since we got married Chris and I have always had an allotted amount of discretionary money that we are allowed to spend on whatever we want.  He uses his on food and activities, I almost always spend mine on clothes.  For the last few years our amount is $60 a month.  There are a few months here and there if I buy a pair of boots or a dress for a wedding that I spend more, but there are months that I spend less.  Any time I get gift cards or birthday/Christmas money I almost always spend them on clothes.  By only buying clearance clothes I do a pretty good job sticking to my budget.  

Thanks again for the questions! I hope that wasn't too boring.  It may have been one of the longer posts I've written.  I plan on answering the rest of the questions soon!


February 26, 2013

Half Way

top: shade clothing    scarf: gap    pants: target   boots: dsw

It's hard to believe that we are half way through!  I am enjoying being pregnant SO much more the last few weeks than the beginning.  Due to our complications at the start, lots of nauseousness, and unfortunately letting fear control a lot of my daily feelings, I can't say that I have loved being pregnant.  While I daily woke up and thanked God for this miracle it was a struggle for me to feel at peace and trust that everything was going to work out.  

Looking forward to: 

*Finding out and sharing our baby's gender with our families and friends! (and of course all of you)

*Feelings lots more baby kicks.  The past week I have loved every single little movement and am blown away that there is a real baby in there moving all around! 

*Working on a baby name.  We have a few of each that we love. I don't know how you actually pick one!

*Starting baby's nursery.  Of course I have ideas, and have for quite awhile.  I can't wait to start buying and making things! 

I'm thankful that I've taken weekly pictures, as it's fun to see this belly grow over time!
Here's a look at weeks 13 - 20. 

Hope you are having a good week! 


Linking up to: style sessions

February 25, 2013

Feeling . . .

proud for finding these leggings for $2 at Jcpenney. 

tunic: old navy maternity   leggings: jcpenney   boots: kohls  scarf: discovery 

thankful for a date night on Friday.  Old movie theatre, $5 tickets for Silver Linings Playbook, and delicious sandwiches while we watched.  

excited for our 20 week ultrasound this week to find out if our little baby is a boy or a girl!

anxious for our appointment to see if everything is healthy with our baby. 

annoyed that these boots slide down and never stay straight up when I wear them.  

confused as to why I ever paint my nails because they look like this the day after. 

happy that it is almost March!  Which means my February giveaway is almost over and I have a few large and medium ad spaces open for March.  Check out details here!


February 24, 2013

dots, movies and chili

After being gone all last weekend, I was so ready for this weekend at home.  Saturday I had a relaxing morning and then got to meet one of my best friends for coffee.  Wearing dots on dots for the day.

 Then I had big plans of being productive on Sunday but ended up sitting on my couch with Chris watching these two movies after he got home from being out of town Saturday and Saturday night. 

If that doesn't sound lazy and relaxing enough, I also got to enjoy Chris' delicious chili for dinner.  

And I have sweet giveaway from my lovely sponsors.  It's especially sweet if you love coffee, as there are three giftcards from Starbucks.  Plus ad space from me! 

CHEERS banner from nestful of love

2x1 laiki

$5 Starbucks card from exodus 31 three

medium ad space from me

Thanks for entering!  Winner will be contacted after the 2nd! 
Want to be part of next's month's giveaway? Check out this discount for March and April sponsorships!

I Mean Business

I think it's probably a little too early to start using pictures of my baby to convince you to do something, although I do think he or she is quite adorable already.  

So for now I'll just use a picture of little me.  

After you get passed the outfit choice (I was dressed up as Joseph for our Christmas Eve tradition) I think it's pretty clear in my face that I mean business.  Even back then as a six year old.  

But in all honesty, I do take sponsors and anyone who is paying me to do something very seriously and am confident in my ability to help grow your blog or shop.  Here's my current stats and prices:

GFC Followers: 1590
Daily pageviews: 800
Monthly pageviews: 22,000


For now until March 1st take 10% of any ad size.

Email me at katiejvale@yahoo.com to reserve your ad space for March or April.  

(I know passionfruit seems to me the way to go with sponsoring, but I like emailing you and answering questions and feel like it's a little more personal. Invoices will be send via paypal.)  


February 21, 2013

Celebrity Connections

dress: kohls    sweater: old navy   boots: gojane

While Katie Middleton and Kim Kardashian may not dress their pregnant selves in a $3 Kohls dress and $2 Old Navy sweater, all three of us are due in July.  Which gives me some sort of celebrity connection to them.
And if I didn't enjoy celebrity gossip and updates already from PEOPLE magazine, I'm especially interested any time I see articles about these two.  I'm also always interested when there are fashion recaps from awards shows, like the upcoming Oscars.  

While I don't always watch the awards shows, I always look forward to reading blog posts, magazines and tv recaps of what the celebrities wore on the red carpet.   I'll be even more excited to check out the PEOPLE magazine 2013 Oscars Double Issue, as soon as it is available on March 1st. (But only until March 18th.) 

Some of my past favorites that I am excited to see this year are: 
                      Natalie Portman                                  Amy Adams                                   Emma Stone

I'm sure it's no suprise, but if I was going to go run to a store to pick up PEOPLE magazine I would choose Target.  That way I can "quickly" check out the clearance racks and shoes as well.  Lucky for you, you can win a giftcard to Target today where you could buy your own copy of the PEOPLE magazine 2013 Oscars Double Issue, a shirt and maybe even a pair of clearance shoes all for $20. 

And if you think you know your celebrity trivia, head on over to PEOPLE trivia for your chance to win one of hundreds of rewards cards! Click the link to play now!
Happy Friday! Hope you have a great weekend!


This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group ™ and PEOPLE Magazine  but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #PEOPLEforOscars http://cmp.ly/3/8vNxcO 

February 20, 2013

Saved by Jess

I am quite lucky that I have a sweet blogger to share with you today, because if it weren't for her, you'd be stuck with this outfit:

For one my camera battery died and I can't find the charger.  Secondly it is freezing cold outside and I have no desire to go take an outfit picture.  But honestly, it is mostly because the last two days I've tried on an embarrassing amount of clothes in the mornings, ending up with really nothing to share. 

Maybe I should do a post with all the ridiculous outfits I thought would work when I was pregnant.  
But probably not going to happen. 

I'm really excited to introduce you to Jess from A Heart full of Frost.  Jess' blog is a mix of everything, which are my favorite kind of blogs to read.  From light hearted posts about recipes and projects she's completed to heavy stuff like her battle with infertility.  Jess is definitely a blogger I can relate to and know you will too! 

Plus she's giving away an amazon gift card to a lucky reader!  

Hello! I'm Jess. One of the first things you should know about me is that writing guest posts feel like i'm starting at a new school and it's lunch time and I am just desperate to make a friend so i'm not sitting on my own (come on, you know you've felt that way. no? just me?...). The good news is, I love new friends and I hope you can stop by and visit my blog sometime.

You see, i'm not brand new. I've been blogging for over 2 years now, just for me, recording my life and all the stuff that goes with it. But it's heaps more fun since i've had more people visiting and sharing it with me! We are also going on 2 years of infertility and when I've written about how it feels to go through it, I've received lots of messages of support from other women. They were so happy to hear someone put into words how they were feeling. So I thought it was about time I tried to share my little corner of the internet with a few more people - i.e YOU! I don't just write about infertility - my blog is a mix of life in general, crafty stuff, recipes, self indulgent posts about eating cupcakes and living in Australia. Most of all, I try my best to be honest. Sounds like lots of fun, yeah?
Just because I can, here are a few (FUN!) facts about me:
  • I'm an Aussie!
  • I'm 28 
  • I just had braces taken off that I've been wearing for a year and haven't stopped eating apples since they came off.
  • I have the mandatory blogger addiction to diet coke (but that's been going on for years)
  • I love anything to do with bread but have a gluten intolerance (some bad karma got me on that one I think)
  • I listen to music ALL the time
So in tradition of what it's like trying to make friends at a scary new school, rather than sharing my lunch so you'll like me, i'm giving away a $15 gift card to amazonAlso because I think amazon is a random name for an online retailer. Particularly because the store has nothing to do with a river or a tribe of women. So that's it! I hope you can stop by and visit me sometime on the blog (or twitterfacebook or instagram) and make sure you enter the giveaway because hey, it's free money!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Thank you so much Jess! And thanks for a great giveaway too!

February 19, 2013

Dear Lauren

pants: walmart   shirt: shadeclothing   vest: tjmaxx  boots: dsw   necklace: made by me

1.  After loving my black pair of jeggings that I wrote about last week, I went back and bought the mint pair.  $10 each means I may need another color too.  

2. I really want a pair of cute rainboots. I know you have a polka dot pair and I want to copy. 

both from Target

3. It was SO good to see you this last weekend in California.  While for a sad reason, it was an extra blessing to get an unplanned weekend with you.  It's rare that us three siblings get to spend time alone together and I loved it. 

A highlight would definitely be you getting to feel a tiny baby kick.  Our baby is already lucky to have the best aunt and will love you so much! 

I love you Lauren!


Linking up to: pleated poppy  &  random wednesday & look what I got

February 18, 2013

Ask me

sweater: target   jeans: old navy   wedges: target   bow necklace: ebay

Well to be honest I feel slightly nervous to post this, as I wonder what would people possibly want to know more about in regards to my life?

But I've enjoyed reading other blogger's question and answer posts, and thought that in case you missed my day in the life post, you might be thinking that my life is really exciting, and filled with lots of unanswered questions.

Like how many times a month I go to Target or how many outfits I try on before deciding what to wear.

So if this is the case, feel free to leave a question in the comments.

If I get more than two questions I will do a post answering them.
And if I don't, maybe I'll just make up some and answer them anyway.


Linking up to: style session