In the Waiting & SheIn

Photography by Madi Flournoy Henderson 

Dress: SheIn || Boots: Target || Suggested Earrings: Kendra Scott || Suggested Handbag: BP

One of my go-to places to shop lately has been SheIn. It is an online shop with seriously low prices. I'm talking SUPER low. For example, this velvet dress was a total of $20. That is a price you can't beat. What I have learned when shopping at SheIn, is you need to read the reviews. They help a lot in determining the quality of the fabric and how it might actually fit. I also like that the prices allow you to play around with different styles without having to make a huge financial commitment. 

Velvet is one of those styles you might be scared to embrace. So picking up a piece from SheIn would be a great way to see how you really feel about the style. Me, on the other hand, can't wait for the weather to velvet ready. I think it is such a fun detail to add to a look. 

Wearing velvet at just the right time isn't the only kind of waiting I have been doing these days. The week my daughter was born I had been having different levels of contractions for days. Some were mild, others would be a little more intense. With each increase in strength of contraction my hope of potentially getting to meet my girl that day would also rise. So after about two days of this and the contractions coming to a stop, my patience was starting to wear on me. 

That Sunday we went to church and a card with the verse "Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage. Yes, wait for the Lord." (Psalm 27:14) was laying there on my seat. Which of course lead to a powerful message on the importance of trusting the process of His plan. It was one of those moments where I looked up and said "ok I get it Lord." As if He had finally gotten through to me that I wasn't in control. 

Later that night my daughter made her arrival into the world. So the waiting process wasn't what I expected at all. In fact, I remembered thinking that if He was trying to teach me to wait, I didn't really have to wait that long. So what was I going to be waiting for? Or was God just trying to teach me a quick lesson? 

It would be in the coming weeks where the joy and stress of a newborn can cause you to feel completely overwhelmed with emotions. Don't get me wrong, being a mother is the greatest gift in the world. But those first couple weeks of trying to figure out how to adjust to this new world is a waiting process. Not to mention you are waiting to just feel like yourself again. The baby blues are a real thing, y'all. 

I think when I heard the message on waiting it wasn't about waiting for her arrival, it was about waiting to realize that I was going to be able to be a good mother. It was about getting through those first couple weeks where you a smiling through the tears because you are so tired and so incredibly grateful all at the same time.

The part I thought I was waiting on was really just the first step into a whole new waiting game. A game where I would find myself wishing for her to reach the next phase, while praying for time to slow down. Realizing somewhere between feedings and the diaper changing that I needed to live in the now and trust God with the steps towards the future. I had to find the courage to hand over that control to Him. 

What are you waiting on today? Is it a new job, a new house, a new relationship, the next step in a relationship, or maybe just for the weekend? While you wait for that next moment I hope you will see the beautiful steps God is taking in your life. Use the strength He provides in you to just wait. It's hard. But it's worth it. 

"Wait for the Lord; be strong and let your heart take courage. Yes, wait for the Lord." - Psalm 27:14


This post was sponsored by SheIn. Opinions are my own. All products were selected by me. Thankful for partnerships like these that make a TAD more faith possible

Hospital Bag - Check! & Groopdealz

Photography by Madi Flournoy Henderson 

Bag: Sole Society || Coming Home Gown: The Plaid Rabbit || Similar Gown Styles here & here || Jeans: Nordstrom || Top: Groopdealz || Similar tops here & here & here

This post serves two purposes. One, of course, is to tell you what I personally think you should pack in your hospital bag. And for all of you not needing to know about what to pack in a hospital bag then... Two, is to tell you about a website called Groopdealz

Groopdealz is an awesome online shop that allows you to purchase many everyday items for an extremely reasonable price. You can find anything from women's fashion, to home decor, to stuff for kids! The items available change everyday so you always have something new to choose from. The black top I am wearing here is one that has been worn on repeat since I purchased it from Groopdealz. I actually packed it, along with a gray cardigan I got from there, in my hospital bag. While I was on Groopdealz I also picked up a sweet little hat for JT. Like I said, one stop shop for all the things you might want at a price that doesn't make you feel guilty for buying it. 

Let me start by saying I have never had so much anxiety about packing as I did when it came time to pack for the hospital. I read the blogs, asked my mom friends, even took a class at the hospital where they suggested what to bring. But every time I went to pack, I still got so overwhelmed. 

Truth is...I overpacked. Like. Big time. And I don't want you to do that. Because busting through the hospital doors with a bag for yourself, your husband, and your baby is just a look I want you to avoid altogether. You don't need as much as you think, but there are some very valuable things you will need. 

1) Clothing

What I packed: Several pairs of pajamas, a robe, a coming home outfit for myself, and cute outfits to put on when we had visitors. 

My Mistake: Uh. FORGET the cute outfits. You will not have the energy or the desire to "put on something decent". Stick to whatever you are comfortable sitting, nursing, sleeping in. Your visitors don't care what you look like. All they care about is seeing your child. I also didn't wear home my coming home outfit. In fact, I just threw on the dress I walked into the hospital with when we came to deliver her. My coming home look was at the bottom of my bag and I honestly didn't feel like getting it out.

What you should pack: Pajamas, a robe, something to walk in and out of the hospital with. I also recommend that if you are planning to breast feed your pajamas be spagetthi strap. Something you can easily pull down to nurse. I had people coming in left and right trying to help me get my girl to eat. And when your brand new baby is wailing for food you need to be able to move fast! 

2) Personal Needs

What I packed: face wash, moisturizer, shampoo, conditioner, volumizing mousse, curling iron, hairdryer, make-up, toothbrush, basically everything I would need as if I was headed to a fancy restaurant. 

Mistake: I never threw on any makeup. I never curled my hair, in fact I didn't even blow dry it. You are so tired. Your body is tired. You don't need a glam squad in the hospital. 

What you should pack: Pack whatever you need to feel good about yourself. I felt like a whole new person after I was allowed to take a shower and just wash my hair. If it will make you feel better to blow-dry and fix your hair, then do that. I did not have the energy or the time. Thankfully the good Lord was looking out for me and let my hair air-dry so nicely that day. It hasn't happened since so I realize He isn't making this a thing. 

3) Baby Needs 

What I packed: Coming home outfit, an extra onesie, two swaddles, a boppy, a blanket, socks, hat, mittens and her carseat

Mistake: I didn't need half of the stuff I packed for her. 

What you need: You need an outfit to bring home your baby. That is the ONLY outfit you will need. The hospital will provide you with onesies, swaddles, and hats while you are there. You need a boppy, especially if you are planning on breastfeeding. Carseat - hopefully thats a given. I do recommend brining mittens. Their little nails grow fast and the mittens help keep the baby from cutting their own face. You will need a blanket depending on the weather. 

4) Nursing Bras

If you plan to breastfeed, I highly recommend going ahead and buying some nursing bras. I bought a couple from ASOS to have in the hospital and for those first several weeks at home. Now, that I have gotten the hang of it, I don't feel like I have to wear a nursing bra all the time. So I wear bras from Yummie by Heather Thompson because they do not have the underwire and are much more comfortable. 

I hope learning from my mistakes will help you in your packing needs for the hospital. If you want to shop any of my suggestions just scroll through the links below. To be totally honest, once you get that brand new sweet baby in your arms you won't really care about anything else. Especially your overpacked hospital bag. 

This post was sponsored by Groopdealz. Opinions are my own. All products were selected by me. Thankful for partnerships like these that make a TAD more faith possible.

Faith Over Worry

Photography by Madi Flournoy Henderson 

Dress: Pink Blush Maternity || Pink Blush Non- Maternity Option || Similar style here  

During my pregnancy I had a lot of fun dressing the bump. Though at times it was still very challenging. Like the time I tried to buy my pre-pregnancy size workout clothes when I was 8 months pregnant. Yea. Not my best moment. So I am especially thankful for my partnership with Pink Blush during this time. They made me feel like I wasn't only wearing maternity clothes by having non-maternity options in the same styles. That is why Pink Blush will continue to make an appearance on this blog even thought my pregnancy is over. I only wish I had known about them sooner.  

Let me start by saying that I loved being pregnant. I know not everyone feels that way. But I was blessed to have an overall easy pregnancy. Physically easy pregnancy. But mentally, I wore myself out with worry. And it is amazing how much worry can consume you in every stage of carrying a child. 

In the beginning you worry that you won't be able to get pregnant. When it didn't happen as quickly as I expected, I worried. Once you get pregnant, you worry about when you will feel the first kicks. Once you feel those sweet baby feet, you worry about the baby coming too early. Then when you hit the magical 36 weeks, you worry if the baby will be ok once it arrives. And once the baby is here...goodness.. you worry about every little hair and bump on their precious little body.

At some point, during the first several hours of not sleeping because you keep checking to make sure your child is breathing, you accept the fact that you will forever worry about your child. It isn't a feeling that goes away. Instead it is a feeling you have to learn how to control. Only being able to control it by handing it over to Jesus.  

Looking back during this last year I realize what strong role my friend Lauren played in helping me to learn how to trust in Him. While I was a mess of worries, she was full of confidence. And through her confidence she taught me a valuable lesson. Lauren just always knew things were going to be ok. I am sure parts of her worried just like I did, but she didn't let it show. She just had faith. Something I wish I had known how to do before I entered into this special time. Something I was lagging in even though I was praying to God for this child's safety what felt like every hour of every day. I had the prayers but not the faith. 

No matter what you are worrying through you have to remember to pray AND have faith. Through each stage of the process. Whether it is becoming a mom, getting pregnant, adopting a child, or even making a career change, moving to a new city, whatever it is...just keep the faith. 

"Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He shall bring it to pass." - Psalm 37:5

This post was sponsored by Pink Blush. Opinions are my own. All products were selected by me. Thankful for partnerships like these that make a TAD more faith possible.