How to Wear Merlot 2 Ways this Fall.

Oxblood. Burgundy. Crimson. Ruby. Merlot. Gang's all here.

Since I can't drink it (the merlot, not the oxblood), I might as well drape myself in this mighty bold shade that just conjures up all the decadent delights of fall. I love mixing the merlot color with like-minded shades, or wearing it simply on its own as a statement. It works really well as a neutral in the fall, or as that necessary pop of color we are all looking for. I styled a few ASOS pieces 2 ways, showcasing my favorite color for fall - M E R L O T.

What I love about this first look is how sassy and free it feels, while still being super functional. The backpack is perfect for my stage of life - running after a toddler (okay, waddling, because I'm currently 8-months pregnant), and keeping all the increasingly pudgy parts of my body well-covered while maximizing comfort (that cardigan!) and fun (that hat!) I love this look, especially because it makes me still feel like I am in the fashion game.

Don't break my heart and tell me any different.

Outfit Details:
Look 1:
ASOS Midi Cardigan c/o, Blanqi Support Tank c/o, ASOS Maternity Rivington Denim Jegging in Oxblood with Under the Bump Waistband c/o,  ASOS Leather Embossed Backpack c/o, Sebago Claremont Boots, Urban Outfitters Hat (similar here)

This sweater dress is pretty much everything to me right now. Worn alone (like I did on this day), or over jeans or leggings, it's an essential piece for fall. Especially when you are growing at the rapid rate like I am. I especially love the ribbed fabric on the sides and the bitty turtleneck. Just a hint of Audrey Hepburn in that turtleneck, which is really all a girl needs to feel ladylike. And again - that color. It's making me feel all the crunchy leaves and taste all the hot beverages.

Outfit Details:
Look 2:
ASOS Maternity Knit Swing Dress in Cashmere Mix c/o, Kate Spade Varick Street Abbie Bag (on sale in this color!), Stella & Dot Alila Cuff

What is your favorite shade to wear for fall? What colors make you "feel" your wardrobe in a new way for the season?

Many thanks to ASOS for sending products to style for this post. As always, all opinions expressed are my own. Thanks for supporting brands that make running this blog a joy!

A Birthday Date & A Bump That Doesn't Lie.

It was on this day that I realized just how very pregnant I am - and just how long I still have to go. 11 weeks til the due date, friends.

I was supposed to be at Disney World on my birthday, joshin' around with Cinderella at the Be Our Guest restaurant and having a few laughs with my sister-in-laws. I'm actually really grateful that we decided to cancel our trip (the rest of the family soldiered on without us), because I was having some pretty painful Braxton Hicks on my actual birthday, and the choking Orlando heat combined with miles of walking would have probably been miserable. For me, and for everyone who would have had to listen to me. And for the kankles that would have most definitely taken on a life of their own and probably heaved-ho away from me as fast as they could klunk-klunk-klunk. So I actually felt really at peace about that decision. But still. Disney is the happiest place on Earth, right? I think I'm allowed a good 5 minutes of pouting about that one.

The best thing about my birthday this year was being with Stevie and Everett. Stevie is the most positive person I know, and he really made an effort to do all the things I wanted on my day. He planted my fall garden for me, and then we went to dinner at The Hil at Serenbe, which was very delicious and very smashing. Get the lamb risotto! It was also my last meal having sugar, so we reeeeeeally enjoyed the chocolate souffle for dessert. Being the good, kind man that he is, Stevie is going to cut back with me (so that I don't grow an extra large giant inside of me), so pray for our saccharine-loving souls. The panicky memories of doing the disciplined Whole30 program haven't eluded us. I am actually searching for some recipes that feel like treats but don't have any added sugar. A few of you have already emailed me with awesome recipes to try - thank you so much! I am open to your suggestions, friends!

Turning 29 feels really good. I have no problem rolling into the final year of my twenties, because I have felt like an old person for a long time. I got married young, and even though I didn't start having babies too, too young, I've definitely been adulting for a good solid decade. It's nice that my age finally matches my life. Although I am compiling a little pre-30 bucket list of things I want to do/see/eat/visit before my next birthday, and I think dancing on a table or two wouldn't be the worst thing to happen within the next year. :) It's good to have goals, right?

I am 29. Very pregnant, a little pouty, but absolutely, perfectly content.

Outfit Details:
ASOS Top (clearly not maternity, similar here), Free People Bralette, ASOS Maternity Skirt, Anthropologie Shoes (sold out similar here on sale!), Anthropologie Kimono (similar here), Pulicati Leather Tote (similar here), Urban Decay Lip Color in Disturbed

A Mad Hatter and a Rolls Royce.

Outfit Details:
ASOS Floral Bardot Maternity Dress, Pink Hat (borrowed from my Mom's hope chest, similar here and here), Charming Charlie Clutch (old, similar here and here), Banana Republic Wedges (sold out, similar here), Anthropologie Stud Earrings

It was all just so British.

The cobblestone streets, the rare London sunshine and the hat atop my head. Coming out of the whitewashed hotel we stumbled upon these flowers that freakishly matched my dress and then a Rolls Royce just appeared out of nowhere. Beckoning me to it, really. Not only is this is the stuff dream blog posts are made of, this is the stuff that dreams are made of! I can't say enough gushing things about this particular experience, because Stevie and I were literally so giddy, relishing the most British experience of our lives (except for maybe the time we did high tea at Fortnum & Mason). We even rode on that red bus you see in the background (up top!), across town to the loveliest of weddings. It was an experience friends, one that I will never ever forget.

I was a little bit wardrobe challenged when I received the invitation to the suite of celebratory events for this wedding. How in the world does one plan for so many maternity outfits? Well, ASOS Maternity ended up being a lifesaver, because the prices are so reasonable and the options are so stylish and sassy. The problem I've found with most maternity sites is that all the dresses look very classic and alike (and let's be honest - bland), which is sort of understandable, since women want to be able to wear their maternity clothing throughout several pregnancies. But that makes it really hard to find trendier, or even colorful options, especially when it comes to occasion-wear. That's what really sets ASOS Maternity apart - I found so many options that I loved, and actually ended up ordering about ten dresses, trying them on at home, and choosing between them. Obviously ASOS is known for it's non-maternity clothing, but if you're a pregnant lady in need of a nice dress, their maternity line is the go-to. And as for that hat, well, what can I say. My mom is my style icon, the original fashionista in my book. This thing was just laying around in her closet.

And there's my date. Oh, and there's Stevie, too. JUST KIDDING! As much as I loved that bus ride, I loved experiencing it with him even more. It was sightseeing and transporting and Kate Middleton stalking all at once. :)

P.S. - More from our London trip here - inhaling rose lattes around Notting Hill and wearing a sari on Queen's Gate Road.

Wandering through Kensington Garden & Notting Hill.

London, I love you.

This is the loveliest of towns. Stevie and I spent last week in this polite, prestigious hamlet for a good friends' wedding and it was nothing short of exciting, invigorating and so, so inspiring. It's just the most attractive city - so clean and historic and well-maintained. There were enormous planters of cascading flowers everywhere - hanging from lanterns, peeking out from enclosed gardens, and pristinely lining the sidewalks in the most polite fashion. I've never seen such gorgeous maintenance, city-wide. The British really care about orderly fashion, and I kind of love it. Of course, I don't know any American girls who aren't fascinated with British culture, those Disney movies really did us in.

Though we were busy for most of this trip, celebrating the 3-day wedding, we managed to do a bit of exploring in between events. One of my favorite parts of the city is Notting Hill, and the last time we were there it was a bit rushed, so this time we wanted to take our time and enjoy the colorful homes (and vibrant doors!) that line these quaint streets. We took the long walk from our hotel in Chelsea, The Doubletree Kensington, through Kensington Garden, past the Kensington Palace (where I'm certain I lost my phone, RIP) up into Notting Hill.

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Side note - these maternity overalls are going to be on constant rotation these next few months. They are so comfortable and actually fit incredibly well. Have I mentioned how much I love ASOS maternity? More on that later.

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Kensington Palace! Where Diana lived and where Prince William and Princess Kate reside where they're in London.

I have no reason to believe that London is a soggy, cloudy town because it was like 70 degrees and sunny the entire time we were there. Also, he's cute.

A botonist's dream.

I read about Farm Girl Cafe on Portobello Road here and wanted so badly to try the famed rose latte. When we arrived, the little place was packed and the waiter warned us that the drink of our choice was "a little girly" - so of course Stevie chose something else. MISTAKE. My rose latte tasted like a floral coffee wondertreat with crispy bits of rose to munch on (the tastiest of surprises, I assure you) and Stevie kept asking for sips. I was a bit stingy though.

The beauty of this area of London is found in the wandering, and perhaps getting a bit lost along the cobbled side streets. Peeking through the wrought-iron gates into the private gardens and imagining what it would be like to have afternoon tea on the terrace and pulling open the brightly-colored front doors - the dreaming is all part of the fun. We spent the morning talking about which house would be ours (I kept changing my mind, because they're all just too pretty to choose), and what life would really be like, living in London. Does anyone else do this when they travel? We do this everywhere we go, whether it's on a road trip to the beach or a quick trip to London. We like to imagine our life and our family living in different places, just for the fun of it. I guess you could call that grown-up make believe. This fun was only the beginning, I'm excited to share more about this trip in the coming weeks!