May 18, 2016

An Everyday Statement Piece: Madewell’s Mirasol Jumpsuit

black-crochet-romper

 

If you follow me on Instagram (@shanachristine), you know that I ordered this jumpsuit on a whim.  I had low expectations – I’m so short that jumpsuits always end up pooling at my ankles, like a shrinking Alice after drinking from the bottle.  Annoying.  I could almost drown myself in a pool of tears.

But Madewell offers it in XXS (which, I figured, has got to mean length – how skinny can one make a loose-fitting jumpsuit?), and intriguingly describes the material as “extra-special noil silk (often referred to as “raw”) that gives it a nubby, oh-so-touchable texture.”

Clicky-click.  Bought.

madewell-romper

By May 18, 2016 11 No tags Permalink
May 17, 2016

A Perfect Picnic With Modcloth

cutest-picnic-supplies

 

For Mother’s Day, the boys bought me this picnic basket, featured on one of our Mother’s Day gift guides.  Apparently, it was Pax’s idea – he must read the blog (terrifying).  In any case, after the initial Picnic On The Bed, both Pax and Raines had been after us to go on a real picnic. Normally, this wouldn’t be a big deal – right about now is when we start playing fast and loose with bedtimes in preparation for Summer….

…but this RAIN, you guys.  THIS RAIN.  I just can’t even.

Anyway, before I bore you with more talk of the weather, suffice to say that on Saturday, we were supposed to have a few hours of sun.  And high temps.  So Mike and I, in a parenting fail of near-epic proportions, promised to take the boys to the beach.  The freaking beach, people.  For a “quick” picnic.  As you can probably guess, we took longer than expected to leave the house (playing nearly an hour of every City Dweller’s favorite game:  Where’s My Car),  and by the time it was all said and done….it was pouring at the shore, with a 90% chance of continued rain.

Hell hath no fury like a Pax denied.

So instead of the shore, we trucked on over to the banks of the Schuykill River where we had – count ’em – 20 minutes to eat and play before it rained again.

Sigh.

We’re just going to chalk this one up to a really good try.  A picnic dress-rehearsal, if you will.

The good news is that our picnic game is now on point.  We’ve got the supplies, a can-sit-all-day-in-the-sun menu (vegan and gluten-free, thankyouverymuch), and are going to rock the heck out of a beach picnic this summer.  GAME FREAKING ON.

By May 17, 2016 11 No tags Permalink
May 16, 2016

Reader Question: What to Wear – High School Reunion

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Ahh, high school.  Such fond memories of, well…..hunh.  To quote Amanda, “back when I was soooo well rested.”  And apparently back when duck face was still OK to do (OMG Cam!).

In high school, I was doing responsible things like running for a class office, which sounded like a good idea…..but no one pointed out the fine print:  winning means that you’ll be planning class reunions for the rest of your life. My 20th high school reunion is this summer and my friend and I (neither of whom actually live in our hometown) have been hard at work planning the event.  So, when I read Heidi’s question on our Facebook page, I could totally relate.

Hi! I need ideas for a dress and shoes for my 30th high school reunion the end of July. Casual chic. I’d like to show off my hard work but not be too sexy. Thanks!

What to wear around people you haven’t seen in forever….and be all “casual chic”?  (Thanks for nothing, dress code.)  This is tricky.   Conceivably, you could get away with jeans, serious shoes and a fancy top, but a much safer (and more fun!!) bet is to stick with some sort of gorgeous dress (or romper), and then dress it down with simple wedges, flat sandals, or unfussy hair.  The note you want to hit is Fabulous, Without Trying Too Hard.

And I love that Heidi wants to show off her hard work.  Here are a few thoughts….nothing overly fancy, just cool and chic.  Uh….”casual chic.”

By May 16, 2016 10 No tags Permalink
May 14, 2016

Editor Picks From The 2016 Swim Guide

cute swimsuits for moms

Hey, hey, HEY,  The Mom Edit’s 2016 Swim Guide is here!!!   We started with one-pieces, but per reader requests, two-pieces will be coming out next week (and don’t forget my personal favs – wetsuits).

So keep on reading for our top one-piece picks from the Swim Guide – each member of The Mom Edit team has picked their favorites.  These are the suits that make our hearts beat fast, the ones we can’t stop thinking about, the one-pieces we would be absolutely thrilled to wear.  And just like last year, we’d love to hear about your favorites.  (And, for the brave, some swim-selfies would be amazing – my favorite from last year was this one.  Hands down.)  Enjoy!

By May 14, 2016 21 No tags Permalink
May 13, 2016

The Newest Member of The Mom Edit Team…..

navy-striped-top

 

The Mom Edit team finally has a much-needed assistant.  I’d like to introduce you to Gwen.  In addition to being a fabulous nanny (my boys love her), she has been working behind the scenes for the last several months with editing, helping to get our social media accounts in order, and a million various other things.  (I’m especially thrilled to have someone help me sort through the mountain of reader questions in the hopes that we can start answering more of them.)

You’ll also start seeing her pop up on the blog from time-to-time.  She had some stellar contributions to our 2016 Swim Guide (launching tomorrow) – including one suit that would be so freaking perfect for post-partum and nursing I couldn’t believe my eyes.  When 20-somethings and, uh, slightly older moms agree, that’s a pretty good bet.

By May 13, 2016 8 No tags Permalink
May 12, 2016

Brand You’re Gonna Love For Summer: Piper

piper

It’s rare these days that I see something and do a complete double-take, but that’s what happened when I was scrolling through pages of stuff on Revolve last night.  A blouse had caught my eye:  embroidered, with a rainbow of threads in an aztec-like print.  A few minutes later, it happened again – this time it was a bright off-the-shoulder dress, trimmed in pom-poms.

When I realized that both of these pieces were by the same designer, Piper, I had to check it out.

Piper, if you haven’t heard (and they’re certainly new to me), is worth putting on your radar.  Each piece is totally unique and on-trend, they’re hand-washable (despite the fancy details like embroidery, pom-poms, etc), and each piece retails for under $200.  I love that these pieces can easily do double-duty – with flats and cut-offs for daytime, yet special enough for a night out.

Keep reading for a list of my favorite pieces, with a few notes on how I’d style them….

By May 12, 2016 5 No tags Permalink
May 12, 2016

What’s Your Pool Float Personality?

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Did you know Memorial Day is less than 3 weeks away?! What? We’ve had a few false starts to spring here, but today was finally warm enough to imagine that summer’s on its way. Maybe.  Since we’ll have access to a pool this summer I’ve been browsing water toys for the kids but ended up finding all these amazing pool floats I want! There are so many cool options now that I was almost overwhelmed by choice (back in my day, this guy was about as exciting as it got) so I rounded up the best of the bunch in hopes someone may benefit from the many, many hours I waste conduct research online.

To make shopping even more fun (because looking at giant, adorable inflatable animals is so taxing) I created fun little pool float personality capsules – are you a GLAMama, junk foodie, American beauty or the resident mermaid on duty?

By May 12, 2016 3 No tags Permalink
May 11, 2016

Long Pants in the Summer?? YES, THESE.

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I get that not everyone is into shorts.  Before Shana gave me the (life-changing) tip of sizing denim shorts up (way up so they’re a bit baggy), I could never seem to find the right fit.  They were too high or too tight or too long or too wide or too “mom-ish.” . . .  Shorts are hard.  And that’s if you can wear them!  E recently wrote in with this question:

I’m in the third trimester of my second pregnancy, and I have developed crazy varicose veins. My doc sent me to a specialist, long story short, I’m now wearing full length maternity compression stockings. They’re horrible. Super opaque, weird beige color, full toe. How do I work with these? I’m thinking of wearing them under leggings, and then maybe going with high tops? Thankfully I only have to make it to mid-June, then presumably giving birth will remedy the situation and I can wear skirts and shorts again! Thanks for any insight!

E, you are not alone.  We get questions all.the.time about warm-weather options for hiding varicose veins (even without the complications you’re dealing with).   My favorite option?

Surf pants.

They are super comfortable (like pajama-comfortable), lightweight, cool, flattering – but youthful, too, invoking a surfer-girl vibe. They can be worn out to the beach or dressed up for a night on the town.

(Personally, I also like to wear them on the couch while watching tv, but that’s just me.)

May 10, 2016

Athleta Swim (#DressingRoomSelfies…At Home)

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Hey hey…I got brave for y’all…swim suits!

I recently received Athleta’s catalog in the mail and LOVED some of their new swimwear. Many of the styles that I wanted to try were only available online, so I ordered some for home. I’ve been excited to check out their suits since many of you have said you love them. I agree! All of the suits seem well made. The fabric (Lycra Xtra Life) is supposed to last 5-10x longer than other swimwear fabrics and it does feel very sturdy, especially compared to the less expensive swimwear I generally go for. I tried bikinis, tankinis and rash guards – all mixed with a few different bottoms. Here’s what I found.

Bikinis

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Palm Cove Bralette Bralette Bikini | Palm Cove Dolphin Short

I like this combo above a lot and these were the two pieces that made me want to try Athleta swimwear. Love this pairing for sports, beach walks/runs, and playing in the water with kiddos. I think the Palm Cove Bralette is a tiny bit long on me (it bunches a bit) but on mamas with a longer torso it would be perfect. It fits nice and securely but with lightly molded cups and underwires in it it doesn’t flatten your chest like a sports bra. Good. It’s hard to see here, but there are mesh stripes on the bottom part that are super cute, too. (Wearing size Small in both, for reference)

May 9, 2016

For Mamas Who Play Hard: WETSUITS

cute wetsuits for jersey shore

At the end of last summer, I bought a wetsuit.  It wasn’t a particularly cold summer, the water temp was…pleasant.  So there was no good reason that I had spent the majority of my time on the hot sand, watching (and cheering) my boys on as they body-boarded, did some stand-up paddleboarding and played in the water.

Yay, Boys!!  You go and do that Boy Thing!

Ugh.  What has happened to me?

Pre-kids, I was always the one on the stand-up paddleboard, the surf board, the wind-surfer.  My Dad was a big believer in taking risks, in trying everything once, and my childhood summers were filled with all kinds of adventure:  that time I took my tiny sailboat out alone and got stuck across the lake (I learned how to tack after that).  The time my friends and I took off with Uncle Jim’s jetskiis and almost ran out of gas (hmmmm…he still doesn’t know about that one).  That insanely frustrating day I tried to one-ski and fell 20 times in a row.  THIS was summer.

So when, exactly, did I turn into the Mum on The Towel?  My downward spiral into spectator-only-mode was, most likely, an effect of years of sleep deprivation and general exhaustion but ultimately….WHO CARES?  It was, quite simply, time.  It was time to take myself back, to show my boys that This Girl Plays Hard, and when I’m 85+ years old sitting on the beach watching my grandkids play (assuming I’ll be so lucky)….hopefully I’ll have a sense of peace, knowing that my days were richly spent.

So.  It was time to tackle my biggest hurdle to ocean play:  Cold water.  I hate (hatehatehate) being cold.  I HATE it.  But I had been resisting the urge to buy a wetsuit because I felt like some kind of poser.  Surfing?  OK.  I get it.  But general frolicking and body-boarding with four year olds?  Uh….seriously?  A wetsuit?

ripcurl-wetsuit

Yes.  Seriously a wetsuit.  Once I got over myself, this wetsuit business completely changed my Mom-at-the-Beach game.  We’re talking hours of playing in the ocean, where my pre-wetsuit-self would only have lasted 20 min tops.

By May 9, 2016 24 No tags Permalink