10 Things I Love Sunday

This past week has been a roller coaster of emotions for me. I stopped myself seconds before posting the most emo Instagram caption of all time … haha! It’s just crazy. I think it’s a combination of many things: our adoption trip being SO close, pre-anxiety over taking a maternity leave (I haven’t taken a month off work in 10 years and so even though I am grateful beyond words, I’m a little nervous too), a remodel that I’m trying to wrap up and THE SUN GOING DOWN BEFORE 5 P.M. In the words of The Home Edit … I’m surviving, not thriving. But I’m pretty sure you’re going to make me feel better by saying this is a completely normal way to feel two weeks before becoming a mom? (Please!)

On to the favorite things …

1. My best gal Andi did the sweetest home tour (and be sure to read the interview … so inspiring!) I spy a pink Violents record too.

2. We started watching Parks & Rec and it’s been the perfect way to unwind.

3. Getting a star manicure with these nail tattoos before our trip next week.

4. I really want a cozy sweater like this, but I know myself and I’m afraid I would wear it exclusively for the rest of winter. Haha!

5. Nova really, really, really does not need any more dresses right now, but LOOK!

6. How do I not own this scorpio pillow? #ScorpioPower

7. After looking at every diaper bag option under the sun, we found one for $30 that’s perfect!

8. Should I buy these pants??

9. Couldn’t resist this Etsy T-shirt for Nova’s stocking.

10. Got my copy of Essential Glow in the mail. Essential oil lovers … you’re going to need to add this book to your Christmas list!

P.S. I posted something here about my fears for sharing Nova’s childhood online. I’d love to hear your perspectives and how you found balance.

xx. Elsie

  • Oversharing your kid’s life is a hard balance. I have a private account and a shop account on Instagram where my three year old girl is my main model. Now that she’s getting older, I find it difficult to post pictures of her publicly where anyone can have access to her. I want to protect her privacy as much as I can but at the same time connect with customers. It’s hard! Just like most parenting things are. Good luck finding a balance! You’ll figure it out as you go.

  • I have zero affiliation with this organization, but I totally thought of you when I saw their products. Adorable, felted animals. Might be something to add to your daughter’s room!


  • Hi Elsie!
    I don’t have kids yet, but I already read parenting books and worry about if I’m going to be a good mom, haha! I get ya’ sister. I read your post about privacy for Nova and had one thought. (I saw this is a celebrity cook book once and always respected the approach). So this guy talked about cooking with his kid, but only took pictures of parts of her and never her face. With Nova, you could take pictures from behind her, with her sitting at her art table. Or zoom in on just her hands. Or show her feet dangling from a swing. You get the idea. To me it seems like a good way to think creatively, share some of your life, and give your girl as much privacy as you desire. Perhaps the added effort will help lessen the chances of following her around with a camera, rather than being more present. Maybe? That one’s up in the air.

    I know it’s hard trying to be a good parent when you don’t even have the kid yet. I’m in the same(ish) boat. I trust everyone who says “you just figure it out!”, but I also cope better with anxiety when I have a plan… even if it’s subject to change. I call them… faux plans. 😉

    Congrats on picking up Nova soon. The fact that you’re considering her needs before your own just shows you’re going to be a wonderful mom. Savor every minute of your trip, you’ve worked hard for that baby girl!

  • Nova?! What an adorable name!!! Your going to make a great mom. Praying for her safe arrival to your home!!! How exciting! That sweater does look extra cozy though. Wish it was cold enough here to wear it!

    Katie | www.sunshinestyleblog.com

  • I read your post on sharing Nova’s life online…I have three kids, 8, 6, and very nearly 4, and my rule about sharing online is to 1. post the things that wouldn’t embarrass them to see later- for example, I’ve seen more than one newborn pic of babies getting weighed, and you can see EVERYTHING. And 2. Refraining from posting a lot of negativity. Parenting is amazing, and rewarding, but it’s also challenging. We know this. And while I definitely struggle with the idea of only showing the good stuff (because it’s a false narrative, my life is certainly not perfect, ha), I don’t want my kids to later see things that would make them feel bad about themselves or their childhood, if that makes sense. For example, my middle has a sensory processing disorder. It’s hard, but I’ve also found a lot of support and community from posting about him in a way that doesn’t downplay those challenges, but instead celebrates his successes.

    I hope that all made sense, it’s still a work in progress for me at times, and my goal is that as they get older and have more buy-in, I’ll continue to respect them as people and post or not post things that they approve of.

  • You probably are so busy you won’t even see my comment at this point, but if you DO read it at some point, I want you to know that I love how you are so open in your blog. I read the “fears” post on your personal blog and it brought tears to my eyes. I’ll be 30 next year and the whole child-rearing subject hit me like a ton of bricks this past year. My husband and I don’t plan on having children for probably 2-3 years, but I can feel the clock ticking. It’s terrifying. I’m so afraid of screwing up the kids that I don’t even have yet. I’m overly conscientious! I’ll be the mom analyzing her tone of voice to make sure there aren’t any transferable “negative vibes!” Goodness gracious, it’s so nice to be able to relate to others who are going through the same emotions. I’m looking forward to hearing your story through motherhood, and hopefully learning a thing or two from you. 🙂

  • That dress! Ahhh! Playing devil’s advocate here but you totalllyyyy should! Haha. It’s too sweet and perfect.

    I think your diaper bag is going to end up being my personal flight bag. lol. It’s just too perfect for quick trips and budget flights that only give you a personal item! <3

  • I want a sweater like the fuzzy one too! Fuzzy clothes is my go to for this time of the year.
    xo, Meghan | http://tanlinesanddaisies.com/

  • Oh my gosh. So, so normal. No matter how many scenarios you try to imagine, you can’t know how it’s going to feel and what it’s going to actually be like. But you’re close. It will all fall into place soon xx
    Also, be prepared to fall HARD for Leslie Knope. She’s everything.

  • Do you still have your dogs? And by the way, congratulations. Being a mom is the best thing I ever did.

  • We adopted our girl last year in October, shortly before she turned one. We had about three weeks from being notified until she came to live with us – there is absolutely nothing we could have done, which is rubbish advice but as someone above mentioned, you just can’t ever really be ‘prepared’.

    However, I recently read a book called The Primal Wound by Nancy Verrier. It flipped my perception of my daughter completely and helped me make sense of a lot of her behaviour. Seriously recommend it 🙂 All the best with your journey, Elsie. Adoption is the best and as much as people will tell you your kiddo is so lucky to have you, the biggest lesson I’ve learned is that we, as parents, are the lucky ones.

  • I am really excited for you as you are about to welcome your first child into your family. Feeling a rollercoaster of emotions and fear and anxiety are normal before becoming a parent. You are about to embark on a journey and you do not know where it will take you or who you will meet along the way. No matter how many books we have read and people we have talked to, we can never be fully prepared to be parents. I have 4 grown children. Every child is different and begins life with their destination unknown. There will be twists and turns and steps forward and steps backward along the way. Being a family team bonded by love and respect is very important. You’ve got this – you can do it. It will be the hardest and most beautifully amazing journey you will ever go on.

    And Parks and Rec is an awesome show to watch to unwind. Our family has been through some tough times and I find great value in comedy as a stress relief . I hope you enjoy the series.

  • Those last weeks and days before travel are crazy! Exciting, nerveracking, neverending. You just want to get on that plane!
    A few fun kid moments on a private blog is probably ok. We had an invite-only for our trips to China but still didn’t post some personal pictures and info of our ‘family days’/when we were united with our children and of their orphanages. Personal info about our kids’ life in China is not for entertainment and is off-limits, even to our family. They have so little personal history from life in China, so that part of their life is their own. We talk about it together. They can share later if they like and they can use the “W.I.S.E. Up!” tool to figure out how they want to react to personal questions.
    Bringing home a 3 yo can present many challenges. Our son was 2 1/2 and loved his nanny. The first days he would space out. He could only manage to relate and bond with one of us. This lasted a lot time and was tough on Daddy but that was all our son could manage. Then the anger and control issues started. Since we can never truly know the trauma our children carry with them, we can’t prepare ourselves fully for helping them heal and transition. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from an adoption therapist. Also, while in China, ask about her daily routines/schedule and how they took place so you can continue the same patterns/rituals at home. (I asked almost all the wrong questions the first time around.)
    Best of luck to you all and hopes for a gentle transition time

  • I never comment but have been reading your blog for years. I cannot tell you how excited I am for you to become a mom! You and Jeremy will be the best parents. I have two kids and yes, that feeling is so normal. Good luck on your trip 🙂 meeting your child for the first time is unlike anything else and really can’t be put into words.

  • I love sundays!

  • Mom of 2 here and I never ever post any pics of them online. Coz I want them to choose later in life what they will do with their pics. I document our life a lot and print albums for our home but it is their faces/bodies and they have a right to choose what to do with those pictures. I wouldn´t have liked all my life as a child shared online for strangers to see. Business is a thing but private life is another 😉

  • Elsie,
    Everyone knows you’re a hardcore Office fan and I’ve always wondered if you’ve ventured into Parks and Rec before. I love it even more than The Office! All of the characters are SO endearing. I’m in law school and I think we all hope we have a little Leslie Knope in us! She truly just wants to make the world a better place and love her people well! Never fails to make me feel better 🙂

  • Elsie I really enjoyed your post on your family blog and it’s def. something I have struggled with too with our boys as far as finding balance. What has worked for me is to physically put my phone away..I will take a photo or two and just stuff it in my bag or put it in another room and that has really helped me to be engaged with what we are doing. I’ve also been taking a day (or two) off a week from going on IG and that has helped me feel more balanced as well. You will find a balance that works for you…don’t be too hard on yourself ????

  • I’m weeks out from welcoming my second, and nesting like crazy! I’m trying to reorganized closet and things I haven’t thought about in years! It’s sooo normal to feel overwhelmed. Don’t stress about everything being perfect. Once your little girl is home your house will never be clean again!! Try to enjoy these last few weeks with your husband! Congrats again, motherhood is amazing!!

  • No one is ever prepared for parenthood but it is the hardest and greatest job ever. After having five wonderful children the best advice I can give is give them lots of kisses and hugs and dont worry about the small stuff (like that juice they just spilled all over the carpet) Now that I am a grandma (of 9) – and the house is way too quiet….I look forward to their visits and messes…..

  • If you’re ever looking for a great book on phones and social media, 12 Ways Your Phone is Changing You, is incredibly insightful!

  • I’m not a fameus blogger als you are, so it’s really different for me, but obviously how to deal with phones, internet and baby P is something my partner and I discuss.

    I like my personal timelines to be personal and P is part of my life, so she’s heavily featured there. We do not use her first name online, as it’s pretty uncommon. But social media are a big part of our lives now and will be of hers, so we make sure that we post mostly things that reflect how much we love her, but she is and will be part of our social media life.

    Not looking at her through our phones is also a thing. So we do make an effort to actively put them away, but now that she’s recognizing them, and trying to play with them as well, we obviously need to make more of an effort.

  • Elsie, a word of encouragement about becoming a mom. I am a mom of three and the oldest is 13, so I have some experience! The tricky thing is that it’s not really possible to be prepared for parenthood. It’s harder than I was expecting, and it’s emotional. But the GREAT NEWS is that it is even more rewarding than you could ever dream. The bond you’ll feel with your daughter will blow you away. And this love is what makes it manageable when you have a hard day. Please make sure to ask for or accept offers of help from others. This makes a huge difference. Try to nap when she naps (I didn’t do this for the first 9 months and I was a wreck, so please learn from my mistake). Be patient with yourself. It takes a while to find a rhythm and there will be frustrating moments but you must not beat up on yourself. If you need to, have a good cry. It’s therapeutic! Go online and watch funny videos when you are stressed–this helps enormously. I believe you’re going to be a great mom. You put so much effort into all you do, and this is what parenthood is about. Keep us updated!!!!


    You may be one of the few people in the world who could actually pull them off.

  • Yes! Everyone gets a little nutty before having a baby so I’m sure adopting is the same way if not more anxiety riddled with the extra steps of travel to a foreign country etc!!
    I flipped over to your personal blog and I agree it is hard to find a balance. As a fan of you and your business I’m dying for you to post a million photos of Nova. However as a mom I find myself too often oversharing my children’s life. My husband is much like yours much more private. He’s taught me to close the book so to speak more than I used to and it’s good. I realized a month or so ago the phone was out
    Of control when I was trying to record my daughters dance class performance my storage was full and the video wouldn’t work I had a total meltdown messing with my phone and missed the whole thing with my phone and eyes!! I was more worried about my phone! Since then I try to at least half my time. So sometimes we go to the park and leave the camera in the car and sometimes I take it. We go to the beach and I decide beforehand today is a no picture and only experience day. You will find the balance but give your self time to figure it out too!

  • I love home tours! Definitely checking out Andi’s. 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

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