Sponsored: Nesting with The Honest Company

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This post is sponsored by the Honest Company. They’re a fabulous resource for safer home products such as cleaning supplies, personal care and baby essentials. They’ll even deliver all that awesomeness to your doorstep through their bundle and save subscriptions.

Also, how cute are their diapers?

 

Has anyone ever asked you the question: Would you rather have a cleaning service or a landscaper?

I was thinking about this the other day, I’d much rather have a landscaper. I can’t stand all the weeds in our yard and I have no idea what to do to make our yard look pretty. It’s been a source of internal contention for some time. I can’t seem to keep the real plants alive and the morning glory seems to love whatever it is I’m doing wrong.

And the truth is, I don’t mind cleaning. Doing the floors and dishes aren’t my cup of tea (Chris does those, thank heavens), but I get strange satisfaction out of cleaning bathrooms.

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After some reflection, I think I know why:

  • The bathroom is a small finite space (unlike floors which go on FOREVER).
  • You know when it’s clean because of how it smells when you walk in.
  • A clean bathroom seems like a much brighter, open space.
  • It’s easier to keep a bathroom relatively clean/tidy for a longer period of time than to keep the kitchen sink tidy (unless you just never cook).

I’ve slacked off in my bathroom duties with this pregnancy because of the tight spaces, little air circulation and how those two play into basically suffocating me when cleaning out the toilet with bleach. I’m sure What to Expect When You’re Expecting has some warning about cleaning agents alongside with germophobic warnings as well. Let it go on the record that I absolutely hate that worthless book. I read it once while I was pregnant with Penelope. It induced moderate to severe paranoia about everything I came into contact. Worthless.  I digress.

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See my slacking duties? You can see smears on the mirror and all of my junk out with no particular purpose. Honest Company sent me a bunch of cleaning supplies which were just the motivation I needed to get cleaning and jazz up my bathroom a little bit.

Did I mention these cleaning supplies didn’t send my lungs into a panic? The eucalyptis mint bathroom cleaner works as nicely to remove bathroom grime as it smells. And it smells soooo good.

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Taaa Daaaa!!! Look at that transformation!! This is no amazing before and after. Quite pathetic really, but Chris noted a very dramatic change when he first stepped foot into my bathroom.

At some point, we’re going to demolish this bathroom and give it the finish it deserves (or should I say I deserve?). We want to replace the vanity with double sinks (so Chris can actually use this bathroom, he’s currently stuck with the one down the hall). I want to tear down the wall to the “toilet closet”, who needs a 3′ x 8′ closet for a toilet? Open that floor up, baby!! I also want to tear down the wall to the linen closet and have open teak shelving there. Add subway tiles along the floor and walls and a giant soaking tub and I’ll be a happy woman.

Until that happens (cough, $$, cough), I’ll be happy with my minute upgrades. :)

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I started out by designing and cutting out vinyl decals of random geometric outlines to add some fun texture to the wall. I organized my nail polishes on the little rack to keep them away from Penelope and around for frequent use. This is a spice rack I scored from Ikea for $4. Chris originally put one in his bathroom so I copied the idea. It’s perfect for storing bathroom stuff up high.

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I end up taking my cosmetics around the corner to the bedroom mirror and work on applying my face while sitting on the floor. It’s much easier than trying to manage my giant belly around the counter top to get close enough to the mirror to curl my eyelashes. I was previously using a wire basket, which would frequently lose pencils because of the wire-y-ness of the basket. Switching to a real tray made a difference. It’s prettier, too.

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I decanted my hand soap to a pretty dispenser and bought mis-matched containers for my toothbrush, tumbler and plant.

The light in this bathroom really stinks, so the plant is now happily living in our bright master bedroom instead. I miss the greenery in my bathroom, though.

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I got a new curtain that allows a little more light in and has more of a neutral spin to it. The geometric pattern plays well with all of the different textures.

A while back we were using regular towel rods, my towels never seemed to migrate off the floor. Chris cut out some wood, stained it and added hooks to the wall instead. It’s much easier to hang towels when in a rush to get kids out the door in the morning.

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I created a little piece of artwork that reads, “Hello Gorgeous”. I already feel gross with this pregnancy and I know it’ll only get magnified when the postpartum body comes into play. I need a little reminder that I’m gorgeous no matter what my body may look like. It’s sad how media distorts perceptions of how our bodies are supposed to look like after a baby. I’m a believer in trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, but a healthy outlook is also important.

Other than that, I haven’t done as much nesting as I would have liked. Next up is organizing artwork; making sure it’s all framed and hanging it on our bare walls. I’ve got 2 boxes and a pile about 5 inches tall of art that’s waiting to find a home on our walls. My mom will be in town next week to help with the baby, so maybe she’ll be able to help. :)

This post is sponsored, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

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    1. Kristin H says:

      Ah, me, too! I haaaate, nay, loathe cleaning floors, the kitchen and yard work. Bathrooms are so much easier! I don’t turn around and find yet another weed to pull, spoon to wash, or another room to mop. So infuriating to leave any job half done. I’ve been curious about the Honest cleaner. I’ve used other more natural cleaners, but the cleaning power never seemed to be worth the $$.

    2. Lauren says:

      Love the Honest company! I’ve loved their products, especially the diapers and hand sanitizer. We are also in the process of reworking our bathroom while waiting for a big bathroom reno. Looks great!

    3. […] subtle diamond pattern in the bathroom. The nail polish crate is genius […]

    4. […] Sponsored: Nesting with The Honest Company – 1 freebie(s)? […]

    Sewing: Maternity and Beyond Silk Kimono

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    When in LA earlier this summer, I found the most gorgeous silk print for $5 a yard. I snatched up two yards for the sole purpose to make a kimono out of it. After seeing Leanne’s amazing kimono (tutorial here), I’ve been on the hunt for the right fabric to make one. The stars aligned!

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    Because of the nature of the print, instead of only using a yard to construct the kimono, I ended up needing all two yards and even then I barely had enough to match up the patterns symmetrically.

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    I wish I took a photo of the front, but the patterns match up perfectly along the front as well for the perfect balance.

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    Between the the print and the silk, this piece took significantly more time to cut than to construct. Instead of just measuring out the pieces and cutting directly on the fabric as it instructs in the tutorial, I made pattern pieces so I could get perfect placement of the print. It also proved to be helpful when cutting the layers of silk out as the pattern pieces and weights provided stability while cutting.

    I was stoked Leanne published her measurements for her pattern pieces. I ended up using those measurements exactly to put together the kimono. It’s sort of a one-size-fits-all piece, so I figure it would work well. And it did!

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    It’s the perfect layering piece without adding warmth to my outfits. The fewer layers I can wear, the better!

    I didn’t mean to have such an annoyed look on my face when I took pictures today, but 99% of them came out looking like this. Perhaps I’m a little impatient to get this little one out of my belly and into my arms? I’m hoping this weekend is the weekend. Thursday would be perfect because it’s my grandma’s birthday. And that would be pretty sweet for the two of them to share a birthday. I share a birthday with my aunt, and it’s pretty awesome.

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    Outfit details:

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    Was that a contraction I just felt?!? Oh don’t get my hopes up little one!

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    1. maddie says:

      At 39 weeks Melissa, you look amazing!

    2. Sara says:

      That silk print is AMAZING! Such a beautiful Kimono. I wish it wasn’t so incredibly fall here because I definitely missed the summer kimono train… ah well, guess there’s always next year!

    3. Jen says:

      This is by far, my favorite project of yours…like, ridiculously amazing. You are gorgeous, and you did an amazing job constructing this kimono!

    4. Polly says:

      I LOVE this! Looks so comfortable! Perfect for 39 weeks:)!

    Style: Raglan Maternity Top

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    My midwife says that I could go into labor at any time. I’m thrilled with this news as we’ve experienced a little heat wave in our neck of the woods lately. As I keep mentioning, I just can’t wait. We don’t have everything in order just yet, but we’re getting closer. I still need to sort through all the little miss’s clothes and blankies. I may end up making a few new pieces for her. I’ve had this design for itty harem pants in my head for some time and I need to actually make them!

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    Not long before making the wiggle skirt last week, I busted out this maternity top. I used the same pattern here as I did in my long sleeve version blogged here, but I ruched the sides. The side ruching helps the top duck under my belly just a little bit, so it doesn’t quite have a tent effect.

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    Putting this piece together was easy since I had the pattern already cut and ready to rock and roll. The ruching adds a little different detail than my other version. I like that it goes high on the sides (like many popular tunics these days) to elongate my legs. Since I’m rarely wearing heels (save for Sundays, I can wear heels for 3 hours of sitting no sweat!), I want that extra length, but I also want the behind hider of the tunic. It adds a teensy bit of drama to an otherwise plain tee.

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    I may or may not have been feeling a contraction when I took this photo. I’m looking forward to lots of long evening walks in the coming days.

    Outfit details:

    • earrings: thrifted
    • necklace: handmade by my dad
    • top: handmade
    • leggings: c/o Agnes & Dora
    • shoes: Sole Society

     

     

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    1. kristin says:

      oooo how exciting! i’ll be watching your instagram like a hawk from here on out. you look adorable; this will be a great postpartum nursing tunic too.

    2. Could you be any more adorable while also growing a human being inside of you?! Love, love, love those leggings! Congrats on the sweet baby — praying for a quick & easy labor with a healthy baby delivered soon! xoxo

    Foodie: Liege Waffles and Peach Preserves

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    Sometime in 2009 I was introduced to the Liege Waffle. Transformative is the only way I could describe this experience. I’ve always enjoyed waffles, but this was unlike anything I had ever had in my life. Caramelized, dense, crunchy, soft and the perfect amount of sweet. Knowing it was a dough-based waffle that required yeast (not my best friend), I brushed it off as one of those foods that I’ll never be able to make.

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    Until . . .

    Feed Zone Portables. It’s a recipe book that Chris bought while researching portable recipes that he can make for pre and post-workout snacks.

    I haven’t talked about it much here, but since January Chris has lost 30 pounds and become quite serious about his exercise and diet. We had no idea he would lose that much (and keep it off). It’s been annoying to me that he’s been shedding the pounds while I’ve gained them. He’s supposed to gain sympathy weight with me, right?!? Back to the book – the book is full of on-the-go recipes for athletes, the salt/water content of each recipe (particularly the rice cakes) is made to keep your guts happy before, during and after a workout. It’s a really interesting book with easy recipes to grab from the fridge/freezer and go. Perfect for school lunches.

    While thumbing through the book, Chris and I came across a liege waffle recipe. I’ve made it half a dozen times already with 100% success every time. Yes. I made a dough that works!I’m beyond stoked about it. So now I’m going to share it with you.

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    Liege Waffles

    From Feed Zone Portables | Makes 12 waffles
    • 3/4 cup warm milk
    • 1 tablespoon yeast
    • 3 tablespoons sugar
    • 3 1/2 cups flour
    • 3 eggs + 1 egg yolk
    • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
    • 1 cup melted butter
    • 2 teaspoons vanilla
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • pearled sugar or raw sugar

    Combine milk, yeast, sugar and 1 cup flour with an electric mixer until smooth. Let dough rest for 15 minutes. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, syrup, butter and vanilla. Add egg mixture to the dough along with the remaining dry ingredients (no pearled sugar just yet). Dough should be tacky. Add a little extra flour if it’s too sticky. Cover and let rise for 1 hour. Punch down the dough, cover and refrigerate overnight.

    Divide the dough into 12 portions, roll in sugar and cook in a waffle iron until dark golden brown.

    Notes: You can easily double this recipe and freeze half for later. After you roll the dough in sugar, wrap each ball in plastic wrap and store in an airtight container. For a little extra punch, put some chunks of chocolate inside the balls of dough and cook. Serve à la mode with bananas and peach preserves for a tasty Sundae.

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    Tart Peach Preserves

    From a recipe that my mom gave me | Makes 1 quart
    • 4 medium-large peaches, peeled and sliced
    • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • 2 tablespoons pectin

    Peel the peaches (I use a blanching technique like this one). Slice into about 8-12 slices. Place in a bowl. Pour lemon juice overtop. In a separate bowl, mix sugar and pectin together, then fold in gently to the peaches. Serve or freeze. Preserves last about a week or two in the fridge. This makes for the perfect topping on waffles, ice cream, cheesecake and more. Add some peppers and put in a fish taco!

    Our neighbor’s mom gave us 3 large boxes full of peaches last week. So you may be seeing more peach recipes here soon! I can’t seem to get enough. I’ve already canned a gallon of peach jam, nearly 3 gallons of frozen sliced peaches and a couple of quarts of the above sliced peaches. Penelope is already tired of them, but Felix and I aren’t!

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    1. Kristin H says:

      My hubby has done the same since January. His mission suit is now too big! So not fair, but he is working out more than me and well, men just have it easier. But I will have to find a copy of that book. We are always looking for ways to keep him full. Protein bars are so expensive and taste so… protein-y. Have you noticed Chris’ body temp being higher now that he’s excersizing a lot? I swear Dave is always hot now that his metabolism is in over drive. These waffles look heavenly, btw, and I totally get your dough issues. I can not, for the life of me, get dough! Let’s not even mention my bazillion failed attempts at homemade gf dough…

      • Melissa says:

        Way to go hubby! I feel like Chris is a furnace, but then again, I think anything over 70 degrees is blazing hot right now. :)

        I bet GF dough is SO HARD to get right! Most grocery store brands don’t get it right, either.

    2. Joy says:

      Proud to be from Belgium! :-)

      • Sabine says:

        I was hit by the same sentiment ;-)
        But to stay on topic: we have a similar situation here! By husband lost about 20 pounds and they stay off. He is vigilant about his morning exercise and now he’s even started running?!? How do they do it?

        Meanwhile, Melissa… you should not feel guilty about gaining some weight at this time: you have the very best excuse in the world! Good luck with those last few weeks… and then to see your feet again – haaah, relief :-)

    3. I can’t wait to try this! I just read about Liege waffles earlier today. Must be a sign! I’m so excited you shared the Feed Zone Portables cookbook. I was just thinking about how all my cooking is focused on healthy portable meals. Cause when I have to eat, get out of the way. ;) Making sure i have a good meal portioned out makes a huge difference and allows me to focus on my job or skating/hiking or sewing or art. Thank you very much. I’m also beginning to share recipes myself. Though I mainly experiment and rarely follow a recipe. :) Merci!

    Maternity Style: Making Do + Last-Minute Additions

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    I grossly under-estimated how large my belly would get at the beginning of this pregnancy. In fact, the only shirts that fit me now length-wise are Chris’s shirts, and a couple of printed shirts I bought last month. It’s hard to mix those printed shirts with the very loud printed leggings that I have in my wardrobe.

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    I’m thankful that I have Chris’s wardrobe to help me muscle through these last few weeks (only 4 left! EEP!).

    To help with the shrinking wardrobe, I made myself a little straight skirt that goes above the belly. The cooler temperatures are allowing for some over-the-belly action for my clothes, which is so helpful. Right now there’s so much pressure below the belly, I don’t want waistbands hanging around there if I can help it.

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    To make this skirt, I used a really thick ponte knit and didn’t hem any of the raw edges. I’m that lazy.

    I took my hip measurement (which is the same as my giant belly circumference at this point) and sewed up a rectangle with open top and bottom. After fitting, I tapered the top on either side just a little to contour to the top of my belly. And slipped it on. It literally took me less than 10 minutes to make this thing. It’s nice to have more church-appropriate clothing in my wardrobe for the next few weeks. I’ve been squeezing into my dressy clothes and feeling so uncomfortable during church! Being uncomfortable = ornery, so I tend to snap at Penelope and Felix more than they deserve. Chris has also born the brunt of my snappiness, too.

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    See how happy I am? It’s because I’m wearing something that fits! YAY!

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    Anxiously awaiting the arrival of Miss Juniper, but until I get to meet her in person, I’ll just sit and watch her turn flips from inside my belly. The girl is going to come out a gymnast, she’s so active!! YAY!! I’m counting my blessings with all this uncomfortable activity, though. My younger sister broke my mom’s ribs in utero.

    Outfit details:

    necklace: forever 21

    top: Chris’s

    skirt: handmade

    bracelet: THP shop

    shoes: c/o Sole Society

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    1. Heidi Lassila says:

      You look amazing Melissa! Hang in there, only a few more weeks!

    2. You look fantastic! I did the same thing with my last pregnancy regarding the belly. I ended up having to get pretty creative with shirts at the end, and my baby (at least a week early) was 9 lbs 5 oz’s!! Eek!

      • Melissa says:

        Seriously? Big baby! That’s amazing. Glad to hear I’m not the only one getting creative with shirts. It’s kind of frustrating to wear the same thing every day.

    3. Joanne B. says:

      Hello Melissa,
      I came across your blog when I was thinking about trying calligraphy again ( after 35 years) and made your blog a favorite. I am a v e r y slow starter and one of these days I will think even more about actually picking up a pen. But I follow you daily and just wanted to tell you this- not only is your calligraphy beautiful, so are you! You look so beautiful in all your pregnant glory! I just wanted to wish you even more blessings than you already are bestowed with! Not only does your artful handwriting reflect what is in your being, your pregnancy reflects that as well! Wishing you only good things!

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