Mid-yawn and mid-babble. Waiting on Emma’s first words. I feel like it’ll be any day now?! We THINK we heard a “DaDa” but we’re not sure. ;) Emma’s dress here. Didn’t end up needing to get it hemmed, haha. Can we believe she’s eight months and wearing 2T clothing?!

Hi Friends! I’m writing this nearly a week in advance. (Edit: I was supposed to be in Dallas, but I’m recovering from the flu instead.) I’m chalking up my newfound on-top-of-things lifestyle to the series as a whole. But let’s be real: I’m probably just having a good stretch. (Edit: Nope. Flu.) ANYHOW, on to this week’s Life Lately! Which is a whole lot of randomness, but I’m also rolling out something new!

From now on, I’m going to include some mini updates. Still trying to figure out what the sections should be called, though. Maybe they’ll be different every week?! But here’s my first crack at it:


I had a rough week on account of being so sick. I always knew that being sick and taking care of a baby would be difficult, but MAN. My first time was pretty challenging, haha. I will say, however, that I have the best baby in the world. I swear Emma knew I was feeling under the weather, and was all smiles and so much fun the whole week. Love my little girl so much and have never felt luckier to be her mom. <3

In other news, I binge-watched Big Little Lies this past week because I couldn’t get off the couch. SO GOOD.


Emma has been making SO many advances over the last two weeks. I swear she’s a totally different baby than she was before we left for California! She just learned how to put her hands over her head in excitement, which is the cutest thing, and while she isn’t crawling yet, she’s scooting all over the floor.


Mitch is taking his students on a field trip to NYC in early May. Amazing, right?! Luckily for his kids, he’s pretty much the best tour guide ever, and has taken countless field trips all over the city. We actually have some VERY funny field trip stories from our Bronx Days. Maybe I should post about that this year…


My cousin, Mackenzie, was accepted to medical school this week, and I’m pretty sure that the entire family cried upon hearing the news. She’s going to school right near my parents, too, which will be so fun! Lots of family dinners in the future. So proud of you, Kenz!


My friend Emily of Isn’t That Charming has been KILLING it on the blog front lately. She works full time and is the most amazing mother, and she still somehow keeps up with her site. Such the inspiration.


It’s been a while since I did a home decor post, but I swear I’m close on one, haha. Recently, I’ve just been so uninspired to make progress. I guess because of the nicer weather? More time spent outdoors; less inside. We are, however, working on our garden this weekend… and the very last thing we need to do with the bedroom is frame two prints and hang them on either side of the larger piece of art over the bed. Get your act together, Kelly!


The city is finally in bloom! Emma, Noodle and I have been taking walks during the day (short ones, since I’ve been so sick), and visiting lots of playgrounds for their swings and sandboxes. Springtime always reminds me of just how lucky I am to live here. If you’re thinking about coming to Chicago anytime soon, now (or summer, obviously) is the time!

Life in iPhone Photos…

L.L.Bean Tote c/o / Jack Rogers (And have you SEEN the new bow-adorned Jacks?! OMG.) / MZ Wallace Tote / Hudson Jeans / Tuckernuck Top (Also love this one, this one and this one. PS this is the greatest top to have ever existed. ;)) / Striped Barbour c/o (In the tote, ha!)

Leaving California was really hard. Because it was our first vacation in over three years, I wondered whether we “lived it up” to the best of our ability. But you know what? Maybe this vacation wasn’t about doing and seeing everything. Maybe it was just about getting away and taking a little break from everyday life. In which case, we did a really good job. :) Plus, it was 80 degrees in Chicago when we arrived home, so that was nice!

First hydrangeas of the season, spotted in Lincoln Park. Okay, yes. They were in a pot. But they were outside, so they still count, right?!

Had the best girls’ night with Blair, Jess and Shaheen this past Monday night at Nellcote. Couldn’t help but snap this pic of the West Loop restaurant’s gorgeous floors. Also, have I mentioned that the bow muleswhich I reviewed here–are back in stock?! Oh yes, I have… ;) Also: Aren’t these striped bow mules the cutest?!

Yellow Barbour (It’s BACK! Like, the same exact one. This one is cheaper and so is this one. And here’s the striped version from yesterday’s post!) / Classic Beadnell (Also LOVE the polarquilt one, also back in stock, as it’s a little more flattering and super warm.)

I rolled out a new series this past week: Personal Essays. (Pretty empty because I’ve only written one so far.) I’m very excited about writing a piece every week, and I’m taking suggestions for the next topic! While it’s taken about a year, I feel like I finally have some direction as to where this blog is going…

This was taken right before I fell deathly ill… but we had the loveliest morning at the park! How cute is Emma hanging onto Noodle’s collar?

I don’t get out a lot in Chicago on account of the whole Mom thing. ;) So I’m just going to continue talking about how beautiful Nellcote is…

First time in a sandbox! And made a bunch of friends. I almost started crying because she’s growing up so fast but somehow got it together before I embarrassed her. ;)

Same day, different park. Made some friends on the playground.

Last photo from girls’ night. Heart you guys. ;)

Mitch took this photo on his phone while we were in Santa Monica, and I was astounded by the composition. Maybe not astounded, exactly; he’s a very creative guy. But isn’t it beautiful?!

Wearing: Vineyard Vines Terry Shep Shirt (Also at Nordstrom — Order your usual size! I’m wearing an XS here, and as you can see, it’s oversized but perfect!) / Jack Rogers (And have you SEEN the new bow-adorned Jacks?! OMG.) / Favorite White Skinny Jeans / Emma’s Gingham Romper / I’m also wearing this gingham top which matches Emma’s outfit, but you can’t see it because apparently I’m freezing ALL THE TIME EVEN IN CALIFORNIA SHEESH.

Right before Emma fell asleep. It was a BIG day for our Little Lady. ;) But she loved Disneyland!

Take two!

This was taken during our first day in Santa Monica. Here’s the full post! It’s the cutest. (And here’s Emma’s outfit.)

Honestly can’t remember where or when this was snapped, but I love it. Did I mention that Emma recently learned how to roll her tongue?! Daddy can’t do it, so looks like she got that from Mom. FINALLY! Something from me! ;)

I’ve been experimenting with the “portrait” function on the iPhone. Pretty cool, right?! Also, we ate six of these. SIX. #noregrets

We spent Easter at my in-laws’ lake house. We landed in Chicago and instantly drove two hours downstate, but I’m SO glad we did. It would have been a sad night just going home, and time with family was just what we needed in order to transition back to day-to-day life!

L.L.Bean sent us this adorable tote bag a couple of years ago, and it’s become a favorite as it holds everything Emma could possibly need in a day! Thank you, L.L.Bean!

California Baby. Anyone else think it’s ridiculous that I’ve been wearing the same pair of sunglasses for FIVE YEARS?! They’re Kate Spade’s Rory pair, and apparently there are only three left in the country. JK, Kate Spade, I know you’re stockpiling them somewhere. Release them to the public!

Our friends at Vineyard Vines sent us some travel clothing for our big trip, and this terry Shep Shirt (also available at Nordstrom) was a fave. It’s SO SOFT. But make sure to order your normal size. I’m wearing an XS here, and as you can see, it’s oversized… which I love! Also wearing these jeans and the older version of the classic Coach loafers. (Also super soft. If you have sensitive feet, can’t recommend them more because they don’t require any break-in time.) This pic was taken at the Inn at Venice Beach. Thank you for having us, Pacifica Hotels!

The Kinney: One of our favorite hotels while we were in California. It’s located in Venice Beach, and the lounge area was crazy fun. I can’t wait to share photos of Emma on those striped bean bags. TOO CUTE!

Lilly Pulitzer Shift

This is from that day in Santa Monica, when Emma saw the ocean for the first time and we went to the Back on the Beach Cafe–a recommendation from a reader! (Thanks, Caitlin!) I know that this is going to seem a little dramatic, but I think this was one of the best days of my life? Love my fam…

OMG. I keep meaning to tell this story, and then it gets super late and I’m too tired and then I don’t, haha. But anyway, I left my two favorite straw hats–this one and this one–on the plane or somewhere in the airport or maybe at the rental car place? Who knows. There was so much on my mind and so much baby gear to transport that I really can’t remember the last time I saw them. Guys, I was SO SAD, partly because I’m a vampire and really needed them, partly because I hadn’t worn them yet, partly because I’d set up a couple of shoots with Vineyard Vines and Tuckernuck and felt like I was dropping the ball, and partly because I felt defeated because I’d spent so much time organizing everything for the trip and was certain I wouldn’t screw something up. My friend Carly was the only one who understood, haha. Mitch did, however, place a TON of phone calls and even drove back to LAX to see if he could find them. ;) A few days into the trip, though, we were hanging out at our friend Andrew’s place in Newport Beach and discovered we were about a mile down the road from Vineyard Vines. REDEMPTION! Hahaha. I’m a lunatic. (Sorry, Tuckernuck. But seriously, guys: I adore this hat, which JUST came back into stock, and I totally reordered another one. That navy bow!)


Whale watching in Newport Beach. I’ll tell the full story later, but we saw zero whales smack in the middle of Emma’s nap time. Use your imagination.

But there were moments of happiness. Like this one. Emma! You little sailor, you!

I should mention how incredible this top is. I’ve owned it for a while now, and I can’t even tell you how much wear I get out of it. I wore it four times while in California, which is a lot for a style blogger. ;) But it’s just so versatile! Goes with everything, doesn’t wrinkle easily, is NAVY, has a scalloped hem, and is flattering. What’s not to love?! In case it’s sold out, here’s the t-shirt version, and I also own this top and this top and LOVE them both.

I also can’t wait to share all the pics from this day. We visited Matador Beach in Malibu, and met the nicest dad and his son, who were both super into photography. Usually, when I hand my hulking camera over to strangers, I get some pretty hilarious, completely out-of-focus snaps. But I’m obsessed with this photo! It perfectly captures the magic of the day, and it’ll forever remind me of this particular stranger’s kindness, who put so much time and effort into getting the shot. Like, he was yelling Emma’s name and dancing. THAT kind of effort! (I’m wearing this dress and these sandals. Emma’s wearing Tucker + Tate.)

Bah! Here’s that striped bean bag I was talking about. This is just an iPhone snap, but holy cuteness. I also need to admit that Emma has like seven Lilly shifts from the After Party Sale. Whatever, guys. I waited years for this baby, haha.

Gingham Flats (Similar here, here and here) / Gingham Scarf / Tote c/o / Burberry Jacket

Totes took this in the middle of Rodeo Drive. Wasn’t too busy, but Jess thought that this was hilarious. HAVE YOU SEEN ALL THE GINGHAM FROM BANANA?! Well done, Gap Inc. — well done! Also, Talbots, you’re pretty phenomenal, too.