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The Body



This post has been rolling around in my head for weeks now. 
Some days the draft takes the shape of sharing how I dress my weird post baby body, some days it looks more like a list of all of the items I've had to buy to fit my new "shape" (new shoes, anyone?) and some days I think I should just avoid the topic all together. 
So I think I'm just going to have to tackle this in the best way that I know how: complete honesty. 
Brace yourselves. 

Here's the deal: this whole body after baby thing is just plain rogue. 
It doesn't matter what you looked like prior to incubating your offspring or how much baby weight you gained, you are going to have a moment (or, more likely, a million moments) when you stand in front of all of your clothes in your closet and think "oh, eff it." 

I understand that my body somehow produced the miracle that is my fully formed human baby, but it seems that perhaps all of my better lady lumps were sacrificed to the cause. What used to be my favorite body parts have certainly seen better days and I'm not sure that they'll ever fully bounce back. 

I can't say that this realization pleases me. 

I was surprised to find that the most frustrating part of the post baby body is dressing it. I actually enjoyed getting dressed when I was pregnant. Even when only a few items of clothes fit, they were cute maxi dresses - and, let's be honest, I loved that I never had to suck my tummy in. But now my go-to jeans that made me feel slender and tailored hit at just the wrong place on my midsection. My bras are all oddly too big or too small. My slouchy tees just add to the previously established bulk. 
Thanks to a zillion reruns of "What Not to Wear", I know that the most important way to dress is to pick pieces that flatter the body that you have at this exact moment. I mean, that's great and all, but this isn't the body that I want to keep forever, so I resist purchasing new pieces that fit it. 
I think I may need to re-evaluate my strategy on that one. 

This past week I was honestly feeling really ugh about my exterior packaging.  Just all roly poly, broken out, un-maincured and sans a fun outfit to throw on. It occurred to me that while I can't change the shape of my thighs over night, I can do a better job of keeping up with my appearances, which will make me feel better in the moment. It doesn't take anything more than 5 minutes of light to moderate effort to strip off my old, chipped polish and buff my nails. A quick swipe of mascara wouldn't hurt either. And don't get me started on what a razor could do for the appearance of my legs. 

So here's the plan for wading through the postpartum waters:

start taking better care of my physical self 
(the rest of my selves are super happy and well taken care of)
purchase a few key pieces that fit well, make me feel great and are classic in style
try to wipe all baby vomit off before it dries/stains
drink more water

I hate that I don't have any advice for making it through the exhausting, draining, physically bizarre process that is the "fourth trimester", but that's what I have all of your for! For the love of all things holy, please share your post baby faves for getting dressed, feeling put together and rocking out the Fourth Tri. Love you, mean it! 


| jacket C. Wonder, old | similar | sunglasses |
Stephanie | Olive and Tate |
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Out of Towners


Mainers have a term for out of towners
Locals say that anyone who doesn't have Maine soil on their Carhaarts from birth is "From Away".


We couldn't have been more excited two welcome to of our most favorites From Away to our wild Maine life this weekend.

Caroline and I have known each other since we were little girls in Catholic School. 
(yeah, there won't be any photo proof of the awkward years in this post.)


I never could have imagined that we would reconnect after college when we were both single twenty somethings living in Charlotte, NC. We eventually became roommates and were out for a drink when we happened to meet a group of guys at a bar. 

(the real story goes something like this: I acted like a brat and didn't want to go out. she promised we'd only be out for one single drink. a group of guys walked in, I threatened her life if she talked to them, went to the bathroom and came back to find her sitting at their table. lots of side eyes in her direction ensued.)

 Caroline met her husband, Reid, that night. 


Just a few short months later, I was introduced to Reid's college friend, Justin.

Do ya'll see where this is going?

Caroline and I wound up marrying bros/man friends/golf partners. 
(what does one call a man friendship that has lasted for many, many years? I went with "bros" because "best buddies" didn't seem to cut it. I imagine Justin will be displeased with my Jersey Shore style vocab choice.) 

Crazy, huh?

Reid and Caroline couldn't wait to get up to Maine and experience a true Fall, snuggle baby Gray and spend quality time lying around my living room. There really is nothing quite like friendship that doesn't require work, pretenses or actual outfits.

Justin, Gray and I showed the Southerners our favorite Maine sights 

We played cards, had lazy breakfasts, watched football, devoured wings, dominated lobster rolls and consumed many bottles of wine. We pushed through the wine and chicken wing stupor and made it to both Bar Harbor and Sugarloaf Mountain to see the leaves in all of their Fall glory.

Brace yourselves for a pic heavy post. 
I know it's a lot to ask for a Monday morning, but hang in there! 

















It was an amazing weekend with some of the best weather that Maine has ever bestowed upon us.
(obviously the weather was perfect, things like that happen as soon as I warn people to pack tons of layers, jackets and water proof boots)

Thanks for making the trek up North, we miss ya'll already! 
Stephanie | Olive and Tate |
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Can't Live Without


Happy Friday!

We have dear, amazing friends in town who flew all the way to Maine to meet our sassy babe
so let's get down to business.

I Can't Live Without Palladian Blue by Ben Moore.



Yes, a paint color.



Here's why:

It get's dark in Maine.
Not regular dark, like dark at 3 in the afternoon and then the sun doesn't rise until 9am the next morning dark.

It can get super depressing around here.

Speaking of depressing, this is the before shot of our living room...
(and by before, I mean the paint color and the old owner's style)


When we moved into our house, the first thing I did was hire a pro to tackle the dark wood and dirty tan walls in our downstairs living space. I had the trim painted true white and the walls coated in Palladian Blue. For the record, I painted our bedrooms myself but when it comes to dealing with one hundred year old wood staircases and painting up a staircase, I hire a pro. I've found that to always be worth the money. 


(gawd I hated that runner. so glad I ripped it out with my bare hands in a fit of pregnancy rage)




With one winter under our belts and another barreling towards us, I am confident that the light, fresh shade of the walls keeps whatever light there is radiating through our home. 

I rarely take a paint color from one house to another  (there are just too many fab shades out there to stick with the same boring pallet!) but I think Palladian may make a repeat appearance in all of our future houses. 

We're off to Bar Harbor to get our tourist on. 
Brace yourselves for a billion Instas



Stephanie | Olive and Tate |
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The Diaper Bag


Do ya'll ever read those articles in US Weekly that detail the contents of a celeb's bag?
The photos are always so cute - a glam tote filled with perfectly uncrushed cosmetics, glass reusable water bottles and snacks for faux eating. 

Yeah, that's not what we're dealing with today.

Let's talk diaper bags.

First of all, why must they weigh so much? 
Secondly, why does everything get lost in there?
And, most importantly, why on Earth does someone so small need so.much.crap?

I attempted one of the Blogger "oh, I casually dumped my bag out onto the floor and this is how the contents splattered" shots and it was a hot mess.

Obviously, the shot below is staged but these items are always in my fine tuned/I've been a mom for 11 weeks so I know what's up/it's time to go to Target diaper bag. 


* not pictured: two million diapers (some in the wrong size), formula coupons, and a half used tube of petroleum jelly left over from our circumcision care days *

Let's talk about the bag itself. 

I'm sure most of you recognize the classic Kate diaper bag that everyone loves but I have to admit that I only kinda like it. Here are the benefits: the incredible amount of pockets in all shapes and sizes, the water proof interior and exterior, the roll up changing pad and the stroller straps.

Sadly, to me, the weight of all of the baby gear plus the bag's uncomfortable straps make the bag only a 5 out of 10. The straps are slippery and don't sit on my shoulder well/at all. I would love a cross body strap option to free my hands and take the weight off of my shoulder. Thankfully, the stroller straps are built in but it takes an extra step to get them situated just right on my stroller. 



Despite those handy stroller straps, when my baby is screaming at the same decibel as a jet engine, I have to throw caution to the wind, sprint into Target and grab that milk (re: wine) with my giant diaper bag swinging from my white knuckled fist. 

I'm sure that if one possessed the gift of crafty, she could probably fashion herself a cross body strap for such a Target trip. But let's be real here, I'm not that girl.

Here's the breakdown on the rest of the goods:

Baby

My fair and delicate child requires both healing balm (otherwise known as super expensive vaseline) and organic sunscreen on the off chance he comes into contact with the rarely visible Maine sun.
He also likes his face, bottom and paci's to be sterilized on a regular basis (diva).
Sometimes he needs to eat (which will inevitably hurt his tummy), sometimes he needs to have a friend and he always needs to be protected from the elements.
And don't forget this or this, just in case he projectile vomits on an unsuspecting bystander.

Mama

My ratty bun top knot often needs emergency assistance so I always have a headband and bobbies on call. 
We all know that I rarely manage to put on a bra before I hit the Starbucks drive through every AM, so these are mandatory to hide a good third of my make up free face.
Did you know that a fairly common post baby symptom is hot flashes? No? Well, lucky you. 
I, on the other hand, carry deodorant with me at all times. 
(and have had to buy an emergency shirt to change into. low point.)
My DIY nursing cover never served to cover actual nursing but has filled in as a picnic blanket, carseat cover, spit up rag and scarf. I'd consider that worth the $5 it cost to make.
Lipstick, Tylenol and hand sani live deep in a pocket somewhere just in case I feel the need to pull it together (the bar is really low these days).
And obviously, I need my wallet to carry my ID so that I can buy the wine. 

All of the wine. 

And there you have it: 218 pounds of necessities for my 12 pound task master.  

Am I missing anything?

Stephanie | Olive and Tate |
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Clearly, I'm good at this.



Hold on to your hats, ladies.

Today's post is most definitely one of my finest. 

I passed the babe off to my husband and sat down to write something witty and/or deep for your reading pleasure but just couldn't seem to put two thoughts together. Well, to be fair, I could put two thoughts together but they all seemed to be about laundry, projectile baby vomit or wine. 

I sent this desperate photo plea to Megan hoping she'd inspire me to blogging greatness.


Yeah, not so much. 

We decided to embrace our scrambled brains, my wine addled vocabulary and her caffeine fueled nighttime routine and share 10 photos that we (shockingly) had yet to Insta

You're welcome.


(bonus pic. don't judge, I gave birth 3.5 days later and there was no prying that cold lemonade from my sweaty, swollen hands )


Baby Mullet


Outfit approval required by Meg


Fall in Maine. 


Hobby Lobby for the win.
(I still regret not tossing that bad boy into my cart when it was 50% off)


My absolutely favorite Trader Joe's purchase of.all.time.




Friendship.

And now that your life has been changed for the better (thanks to this post, obviously) you may proceed with your day.

Stephanie | Olive and Tate |
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Wedding Weekend in Newport


If you follow me on Insta, I don't have to tell you where I was or what I was doing this weekend. 
I know, I have a problem. 
I'm working the Instagram Steps.

Anyways, our dear family friends were married this weekend and we couldn't be more thrilled for them. Maria made an absolutely stunning bride and Andrew was, as always, incredibly handsome. 


The wedding was a Newport affair down to the personalized lobster bibs for all of the guests. I can't even explain how beautiful the ceremony location was - all of the guests took a private ferry to Rose Island which sits in the middle of Newport harbor. The bride and her father arrived on a restored wooden boat and, wouldn't you know it, my Dad served as one of the officiants for the ceremony. Yes, ship captains can marry a couple, but it helps when they also get themselves ordained online.
If you know my dad, you know this is priceless.












Is her veil not Heaven?


The reception was held on the lawn of the groom's sister's home and was styled to perfection. 








More importantly, the food was to die for. 
A raw bar for cocktail hour around the pool, a lobster bake supervised by a chef for dinner and a hot fudge sunday bar for desert. Yes, please.


Justin and I managed to squeeze in a dance or two before it was bed time for all of us. 
We used to be so cool. 

I shoved my kid into one million outfits - all of them themed - and passed him around to one million hovering friends and family members. 

He was a super star until the last event of the weekend where he decided that he'd just had enough. 


| my top |

Conveniently for Justin, his son broke down just in time for us to excuse ourselves and head home for the kick off of the Clemson game. 

Behold, our baby propped up like an adult as his Daddy screams at the TV:

I am pleased to report that I enjoyed Newport in the way a girl can only when the grandparents are in arms reach 


Our 10 week old also rocked his first car trip, sleeping all 6 hours there and back.
(now that I've said that out loud, he'll never sleep in the car again)


 I held my breath the entire trip but it went off as well as we could have hoped.


Until we got home

and realized we left our beloved Boppy Newborn Lounger in Newport.

Cue the late night run to Target. 



Stephanie | Olive and Tate |
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