April 28, 2014

Reward Style Conference – What I Wore #rsthcon

I did something awfully glamorous this past weekend. 

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I left my three men behind, got on a plane, and attended the Reward Style conference in Dallas. 

Reward Style, is, in my opinion, the affiliate program for bloggers.  If you've ever noticed that some of my shopping links start with "http://rstyle…." even though the item is, say, from the Gap, that's a Reward Style affiliate link.  I get a small commission using those links, and that commission is the reason I've been able to dedicate so much of my time to this blog.  So thank you for supporting me.  (And if any of you are bloggers and have questions about Reward Style, I'm always happy to chat – just shoot me an email.)

So yeah – this conference.  We had brand meetings, presentations on SEO (which, by the way, I've been totally ignoring up until now – for shame!!) and round table discussions.  I learned a ton.  And then?  After all of that?  

Fancy parties.  Oooohhhhh yeeaaaahhhh.

Friday

Brand meetings, and then…hello.  Happy hour with Kate Spade NY.  How fun is this?

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 Being such an engineering nerd myself, when some of the developers asked if I'd like to join their pic of "all the solid color dresses"…

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…of course, right?!  And I refrained from pointing out that technically, I was in a romper.  But how awesomely terrible is that rib photo prop?  Ugh.


wearing:

romper:  Ramy Brook Lulu Romper

bag:  Anthropologie Straw Clutch

bracelet: Stella and Dot Bangle bracelet (sold out)…try Stella and Dot Arrow Bangle Bracelet

shoesDolce Vita Hexen Ankle Wrap Sandals

lipstick: Tarte Power Pigment in flush

 

Saturday

Yes, I wore flats. 

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In hindsight, I really should've called this post, "Little Engineer Goes to Dallas".  I was seriously one of the shortest bloggers there.  (And, I suspect, one of the oldest but we're going to all pretend that I never said that and no one noticed mmmmkay?)

wearing: 

headband: Anthropologie Floral Headband

jacket: Rag and Bone (from eBay)…try Shop Ruche's Moto Jacket in beige

tank: Alasdair (gone)…try Chaser's Floral Tank at Shopbop

bra: Cosabella Lace Bralette at Nordstrom

necklace: Gorjana Taner Collar Necklace

jeans: Rag and Bone (gone)…try Karen Millen's Patched Jeans at Bloomindales

shoes: Stylemint Anise Flats

 

Saturday Night!

I felt all old-Hollywood glamorous.  I so love a stunning dress, and Milly NY never disappoints.

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BTW – the straps of this dress are ever-so-slightly stretchy, and if you are comfortable nursing in a strapless bra, I think this dress would work.  (And I'm wearing Spanx, obviously.)


 wearing:

dress: Milly NY Contrast Print Dress

shoes: Dolce Vita Hexen Ankle Tie Sandals

purse: My mom's old prom purse…try J.Crew Factory's Gold Envelope Clutch

iphone cover:  Red Dirt (gone)…also love Red Dirt's Orbit Phone Case.

The most important part: Spanx High Waist Smoother Shorts

 

Want to hear something crazy?  I didn't miss the boys.  Not. Once.  I was so busy, I barely got a chance to call home, and the alone time felt like something precious…a gift.  

This weekend was a gift.  

I left for Dallas on Thursday in a frazzled state, struggling with both guilt and motivation (talk about a horrible downward spiral)…yet I returned home refreshed and focused.  An inspiring conference can have that effect (and a pretty little dress doesn't hurt), but it was the space to think that had me energized, like I was gulping air back into my lungs after being submerged for too long.

And yet.  Back home, snuggled in with my boys, I felt a sense of relief.  

Mamas home.  Where she belongs.

 

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And I do belong here, right here, with them.  But part of me wants the expansive me, the one with vision, and personal goals that are very different from the goals of a mother.  I guess that's the trick, right?  This balance of what you can give vs what you need; I want it all.

I have no answers.  But the next time I feel myself going under, sinking down, I'll just stretch out my legs, feel for the bottom with my feet, and push.  I'll push up to the surface and breathe.

xo,

S

ps.  A big, HUGE thank you to Trend Survivor for taking my outfit shots in Dallas.  Nina, you and your INSANE shoe wardrobe rock my world.  xoxo

 

21 Comments
  • Maggie
    April 28, 2014

    Amazing. Seriously. You look AH. MAZING! In every SINGLE image. Thanks for the vicarious thrill of big girl heels and dresses and cocktails and ideas.
    Google Authorship might be a quick SEO start for you if you’re not already on that wagon. (?Just a thought?) Mamas of the world need to hear you!
    Um, and since you seem to navigate the impossible and unthinkable with such grace, as you strive for that balance, let us all know, please? Says the woman who surreptitiously read (only the urgent) email while co-oping at preschool this morning, feeling guilty on both fronts.

  • S
    April 28, 2014

    You are fantastic! And I’m glad you enjoyed your weekend away!

  • Cristi
    April 28, 2014

    I went away recently and TOTALLY get what you mean! I told my husband that I just felt like “me” again, and it was absolutely wonderful!
    By the way, if you’re looking for a good read, I highly suggest “All Joy and No Fun: The Paradox of Modern Parenthood.” It goes into details about WHY we feel torn but need space. Anyway, I found it normalized a lot of the emotions I was having (and that you describe here!) and my outlook has changed for the better.
    Thanks for being so fabulous and inspirational!!

  • Lex
    April 28, 2014

    You look wonderful! Kudos on a great trip.
    I read your blog quietly, and rarely comment, but just had to say your hair looks amazing short … without the unnecessary headband (and wigs). I understand you may not be comfortable with such short hair, but it looks chic and adorable on you and shows off your great bone-structure.

  • Joules (from Pocketful of Joules)
    April 29, 2014

    Beautiful in every picture — I’m in love with that Milly dress! I also need to copy your ‘casual’ outfit piece for piece, because it’s total perfection! So glad you had a wonderful time at the conference. Every year I look forward to getting away to BlogHer to refresh. =)

  • Belinda
    April 29, 2014

    Awesome looks! Such great style! Love it….so glad you are refreshed…moms need that.
    So can you pick a favorite…lulu romper or milly dress…..which do you think you will have better cost per wear with?
    I want both can only pick one…..hmmmmm

  • Shana
    April 29, 2014

    Tough choice, right??? One I obviously couldn't make myself.  :)  The romper might be the better choice.  Not only does it dress up so well, but with a pair of flat sandals, it's an easy (if glamorous) everyday piece.  Especially in a darker color, like navy.  The Milly dress, however, would be perfect for summer weddings, date nights, etc. (and I'll be wearing it to those types of outing for YEARS to come)….so it depends on what you need.  The last Milly dress I bought was before I was pregnant with Raines (it's that white eyelet one you may have seen on the blog)…and it still gets some serious closet rotation.  It's amazing how long a good dress can last.  
    Oh dear.  I'm not sure I helped.  :)  Let me know what you decide!!
     

  • S
    April 29, 2014

    Would love to hear more about BlogHer! I’m always debating…..

  • S
    April 29, 2014

    Thanks, Lex. Much, MUCH appreciated. :) xoxo

  • S
    April 29, 2014

    Adding it to my kindle now – thank you!!

  • S
    April 29, 2014

    Well, if I figure anything out, I’ll share the good news. But, uh….I wouldn’t hold your breath. ;)
    but YES – thanks for the google link!

  • S
    April 29, 2014

    Awwww….thanks, S! Love, S.

  • Belinda
    April 29, 2014

    Ha well romper it is:). I am surprised you didn’t get the navy?? Your favorite…

  • VAtoBK
    April 29, 2014

    You rock (so hard). Love your blog and commentary.

  • Joules (from Pocketful of Joules)
    April 29, 2014

    This year will be my 3rd year attending and it’s being held in San Jose (which sounds much warmer than Baltimore is right now…). I’ve found it a really good resource for not only learning about/growing my blog (both my personal one and my professional one), but building relationships with brands and other bloggers. Feel free to email me any time: pocketfulofjoules (at) gmail.com. =)

  • Megan B
    April 29, 2014

    Oh man, I love every look. I almost can’t pick a favorite but the dress and the heels are amazing! You look great, and I’m so glad you were able to get away. It’s much needed at times, and I think all parents get that. It’s always nice to be away and always nice to be back home (except when you go to Napa for a wonderful long weekend with your husband and when you return your son freaks out every night when you put him to bed because he thinks you’re going to leave while he’s sleeping. Note to self: book a daytime flight next time so he doesn’t wake up to Grandma instead of Mom in the morning….sigh.)

  • Beth
    April 29, 2014

    Oh my word Shana- you look GORGEOUS- in every photo- from casual to glam. Then again, absolutely no surprise for you always do. But that dress- it is killer on you!
    And I second Lex; I love your hair!!!
    As for the duality of being a mama and wanting a more expansive life- I hear you sister. I will say for me, it got easier when my kiddos got healthy (they were unfortunately super sick due to medical issues as babes) and older. Now I find that I am able to be a bit more of both. Whenever I have time to feed my soul as a woman/business owner I find that I am MUCH more patient and present with my boys.
    You are a rock star. Simple as that. xo

  • tremebopp@aol.com
    April 29, 2014

    I’m really torn about the stylemint flats. Do they look cute with dresses? I’m not sure about the ankle strap being so wide. But they look adorable in that picture!

  • Ali Stevens
    April 29, 2014

    You’re gorgeous.

  • eekieta@gmail.com
    April 29, 2014

    I can’t believe you were in Dallas!! You don’t know me, but if I had seen you downtown, I would have accosted you! I’ve started following you recently (delivered baby #3 in December) when I ran across your blog researching diastasis recti. I have crawled all over your blog, purchased about 15 of your recommendations, and anxiously await each of your new posts. You have been such a ray of hope in my distressing closet as I wonder how to dress this postpartum body.

  • Hannah Avery
    May 11, 2014

    Love your fancy dress outfit! Also really love those stylemint flats!
    -Hannah

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