Monday, November 29, 2010

More baby talk and Two things I ♥

In about a week, I am due to become an aunt for the first time. My brother and his girlfriend are expecting their baby girl very shortly and the only bummer about that is; I won't be there to greet her. They live in Stockholm and because of "my delicate condition", I literally have to stay grounded for the foreseeable future... I can still be excited of course, and so I am, not in the least because it means I will have a little niece to spoil, but more importantly - our baby will be lucky enough to have a cousin who's only two months older! (I confess I've been having these Hallmark-type fantasies, envisioning future summers at grandma's: The kids - three or four years old and I imagine them running across the meadow near my mum's house - all tousled curls and pretty outfits, laughing their cute toddler laughs whilst holding hands and picking wild strawberries...(!)

Well, we're not quite there yet, but day dreaming of future family gatherings made me pull up this picture from the last one...

{Private Image}

Sean was behind the camera and told Pia and me to show off our baby bumps (I clearly jumped on this directive!) As for my mum... she's just showing off.
Anyway, looking at the photo, what struck me was this: "How come my bump was almost as big as Pia's even though I'm not due until February?" And, "Oh look - there I am, wearing my vest. Again." I bought the vest (yes, the fur is fake) in Sweden the summer before last, thinking it would be useful for the 'in between season', and boy was I right. On my blog alone there are at least three pics of me wearing it at different occasions and there are many more where those came from...

{Excerpts from previous C'est LA vie posts}
Now, was I more vain (!) or indeed a celeb, I would probably be mortified at this glaring display of outfit-repeat. Instead, I have chosen to be proud of my affinity for what I like to call Smart Shopping. :)

Kindly indulge me as I muse for a while on "wardrobe workhorses" - the best clothing purchases of all in my opinion. I'm sure you know what I'm talking about; those trusty standbys in your closet that always seem to work, regardless of the weather or event? 
Aside from the fur vest, I also have a very plain black jersey dress that I bought some 11 years ago at an H&M in London. It is fitted and sleeveless, it hits the knee and if we are at all acquainted, you have probably seen me wear it. I picked it up on my way home from work one day without even trying it on, it cost me all of 10 pounds. I have worn that dress to everything from early dates with Sean, job interviews (twice, and both times I got the job:) New Years concerts and shopping trips... I even used it as my stage costume during a performance at the Soho Theatre - as well as to the after party... And lately, because it's nice and stretchy - as maternity wear. It can be dressed up or down and I must have washed it a hundred times by now, yet it hasn't lost it's shape or colour.
There are other things too, like the straw fedora I bought (before it was considered cool) at a street market on Ibiza while visiting my dad... Or the tall brown leather boots from J.Crew that I got at an unbelievable sale price because it was late in the season: Both worn so much I dread the day they fall apart... Smart Shopping.

"These are A few of my favourite things"
{Private Image}

Thus, when I hit the stores, my ultimate aim is always to find the next prefect standby. Every shopping trip - high-end or low, I keep my eyes peeled...Trouble is, these 'special' clothes are hard to come by - but then I think that may be part of their elusive allure: you probably won't know whether those beautifully cut trousers will be a favourite pair until later.Way later.

The good news? Kind of calms your conscience should you overspend: That pricey cashmere sweater just might become a very sound investment... :)


Saturday, November 20, 2010

There. I'm hooked.

...Just came back from a spot of shopping at the new(ish) Anthropologie on Beverly Blvd. The store has an expanded home section which is wonderful, and I love that they always have a huge sale going on with savings on everything from lampshades to underwear. Best of all - it's within easy walking distance from where we live :) ...So far, I've managed to resist pretty much all baby shopping (with the exception of one teeny tiny outfit while we were on holiday). But as soon as I laid eyes on this little bear by Jellycat, I knew he had to be my son's first teddy. The floodgates have officially opened... Next week: crib + bedding.

Sooo soft and cuddly - how could the baby not love him?
{Private Image}

Friday, November 19, 2010

No, this is not {just} a beer belly

I saw my doctor today for a regular checkup and she told me that from now on my uterus will grow about 1/2" (1cm) per week. Some quick math later and I realised that means another 6 inches (or 12 cm) of belly expansion!! So I rushed home to snap a photo of my current "light" state to look back at fondly in the months to come...

{Private Image}

In other news I am happy to report that our wee laddie has a good strong heartbeat, is active as can be and likes to kick his mother (quite hard!) in the gut at (almost) precisely 9 AM every day ...So as to force me out of bed at a civilised hour I presume... Well, the little rascal has yet to meet me face to face of course, but soon enough he'll learn that we Stanfields are Night People! :)

Who naps like this?

{Private Image}

Moses, that's who. Wherever there is a tiny nook or cranny, our dog likes to push his little head through it - ears stretched back - and settle in for a nice, snug snooze. It doesn't look very comfortable to me, but I love how it makes him look like a tiny fox. Problem is, when the nook happens to be provided by my feet (or Sean's in this case) I feel so guilty walking off...

Thursday, November 18, 2010

I'm back baby

Poor neglected little blog... But I'm back now, I'm fairly sure. I knew I needed a hiatus in August, but I certainly didn't expect it to last this long. I'll try to explain: You know when you've eaten too much of something you love? (A special cheese, candy, or often in my case - green olives.) You gorge on it, perhaps daily until you can no longer go near it; the mere thought of it suddenly makes you go - Ugh, no. more. please. 

And then one day you crave it again.

...Speaking of cravings and aversions, I'm pregnant. Actually, I've got less than three months to go now so I guess at this point it's hardly news. So far, it's been wonderful, tiring, joyous, worrying, nauseating (literally), exciting, scary, uncomfortable, cosy, thrilling... I could go on but I won't. Though I will tell you that the first 15 or so weeks were very rough because I felt ill all the time and I really, really didn't want to do anything at all; blogging included.
But then at four months I started to feel a lot better, and since around the time we went back to Sweden for a fall break, things have been pretty good. I'm going to try not to bore you with too many baby details going forward, seeing as this is supposed to be "A Style Blog"...
However, being stylish with a tummy the size of a basketball, a puffy face and sore bosom (TMI, sorry)  isn't easy (to put this in perspective, I'm headed to TARGET later for my maternity fashion fix!) Also, my brain is littered with thoughts of things like crib bedding, car seats and stroller brands, so bear with me...

There we were: Me, the tummy and Sean in Sweden Oct 2010
{Private Image}

Oh, and we're all settled into our new apartment. I know I wrote excitedly about the grand fireplace (my first working one) and I'm happy to report that I've managed to make a perfect, crackling fire twice so far. (It's been so warm or I'd do it every night.) The first time it got a little too "crackling" I suppose, because the Beverly Hills Fire Department showed up within minutes! I had had the brilliant idea of burning a whole bunch of old bills and paperwork, thinking it would be an easy way to safely dispose of things they say you shouldn't put in the rubbish. As it turns out, that much paper causes that much smoke, and (apparently) here in BH people are pretty vigilant about neighbourhood safety and such; someone down the street smelled the air and promptly called 911... Yes, I was embarrassed (there were two trucks and very loud sirens!), and yes, I've learned my lesson. (And yes, the firemen were about as handsome as can be - just like on TV:)

Anyways, I'd invite you in for a little home tour but the place is still too unfinished for me to share pics I can feel good about; I quickly realised that decorating four rooms takes much longer than decorating two (!) It is what it is, a work in progress... I read a quote from some wise interior designer recently, it stated that a real home should be like a living thing that constantly evolves and that is never "done".  So I fight my perfectionist urges and take some comfort in that...

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