Room Renovation!

Hello everyone! I cannot believe 2017 is about to come to a close…(we’ll talk more about that later!) If you follow my Instagram you know that I am OVER THE MOON excited because, for the first time in a year and a half, my husband and I are going to have a bedroom. We’ve been living in my dear (very patient!) parents family room all this time, and needless to say that has offered challenges for everybody. With Brian heading to medical school, we chose to conserve/pool resources and moved to my parent’s home last year. Our plan was to either build an add on to their home or do a mobile on their property. That plan didn’t work out due to financial issues and red tape, and here we are a year and a half later, still in their living room. However, one of my sister’s recently bought her own home (SO PROUD of her) and moved out, leaving a blissfuly available bedroom space (the same bedroom I grew up in nonetheless!).

And so we are making it ours, repainting, and redecorating, and I am truly so excited I can hardly stand it. My parents are graciously allowing us to turn that side of the house into “our wing”, with a fully kid proof bathroom, office for hubby, and our bedroom. This is a pretty big deal, especially considering my parent’s home is a small one level two bedroom. Of course, this will all take a bit of time to accomplish, and Step One is the bedroom. I am so very excited to share pictures of the progress with you all! xo

Blue Lips and White Skies

IT IS SNOWING YOU GUYS! I am sooooo SO stinkin’ excited, it’s finally starting to feel like Christmas! Well here you go lovelies, who knew I’d fall in love with sparkly navy blue lips?! Not me haha! But oh my goodness I have. My top I found at a thrift store and is an easy style to track down, but I did link a similar top. The skirt is actually a very old dress of mine but I linked a skirt just like it (and it’s a whopping $11.99…..hello deal!) The plaid ruana is on sale for the next 19 hours only for $18.99. And 1000000% worth it if you ask me! Who doesn’t need a wearable blanket that’s socially acceptable for special occasions?! My darling sister Tria shot these photos, I had to resist the urge to just stand outside all day taking pics, I mean THERE ARE ACTUAL SNOWFLAKES in these! But…naptime for babies called, and who am I to resist naptime with hot chocolate and SNOW FALLING. Ok enough caps for today I will stop now promise. Happy almost Christmas lovelies! <3 xo

Ruana: click here

Shirt: click here

Boots: click here

Skirt: click here

Lips: Limited Edition T.E.A.M.Wicked LipSense, click here to order via my Facebook group (comment or message me) or use the contact form below.

Email me here to order Limited Edition T.E.A.M.Wicked lip color or to just say hi! 🙂

 

Tulle Skirt and Knit Shirts

Not going to lie, I’ve been hard core crushing on tulle skirts lately and since I’m on this journey to thriving (read my post on choosing abundance here) I decided I need one, so I was seriously excited to find this one at Target for $22.99! And these knit tops, ahhh I’m never taking them off! Kids beyond adorable outfits are thrift finds from a dear friend. I included some picture outtakes because, #twinlife, and I’m all about keeping it real with y’all!

Tulle Skirt: click here

Knit tops: click here

Video below of a live get ready with me tutorial I did recently showcasing a few of my new favorite things. Happy Sunday! xo, Robin

Live video of some very fun new products (diamond lips, sparkling eyes, SO much fun!) and forgive my talking I did it live in my group! (keep scrolling down for the photo shoot outtakes, it’s worth it I promise!)

Aaaand taking pictures in #momlife y’all, it’s a struggle.

Choosing Abundance

 

Oh hey lovelies! Happy Monday! On the heels of my meant to thrive post, (click here if you haven’t read that yet), we’ve had a very rough week, we caught a nasty stomach virus at my work and we’ve been saturating ourselves in oils, herbs, vitamins and even bleach and Lysol (I try to avoid nasty chemicals like that but we ran out of everything and there is a time and a place for these things y’all.) My poor mama got it too, and thank GOD is ok as she’s been waiting eagerly for a very special first time ever trip with one of my sisters. At one point last week, I looked at my poor sick little girl and it hit me like a brick to the gut, I need to do more than just talk about thriving. (Yes, yes, you CAN have multiple “come to Jesus moments” on the same subject you all). But it hit me, (yes, for the umpteenth time), that I need to take action, and make it happen. This time, it hit me even harder because I saw the reflection of my decisions in my sick babies faces. It’s all well and good to talk about choosing the positive and choosing to thrive but I heard the best quote last week, “You have to choose your hard. Sometimes you have to choose the hard things to live an easy life. Choosing the easy way can mean living a hard life”. She went on to explain that you have to figure out what your hard is, too. For me, my hard is, well, let me just expose myself here, choosing to not make decisions based out of financial fear. For me, my hard is choosing to not just turn into a workhorse to “solve” the issue. It’s terrifying for me.

See, I know God protects my little ones. Despite the anguish I felt in my mama gut this last week I knew God was protecting my babies and they weren’t going to die. I feel confident that our actual health and welfare is safe. But for whatever reason, I struggle SO DAMN HARD with letting go of our finances and trusting God to provide that as well. I mean control freak, make horrible decisions, constantly stress about it/stay up all night struggle hard. I’ve been a work-a-holic as long as I can remember. Not because I enjoy it, but because we have had financial duress and I went about it solving that issue the way I believed to be best. You guys, I’m a champ at “jumping off the cliff” and trusting with every major life choice EXCEPT finances. That one, then I’m like nooo nope nope sorry God I got this. Because of course He’d rather me work seven fourteen hour days a week than provide for us via a way that doesn’t cause me actual physical harm. (insert eye roll).

I also feel the need to be the financial answer to everything and everyone. Because, you know, of course I’m going to do a better job at that than the Creator Himself. (insert second eye roll). You guys, decisions made out of fear are NEVER good ones. And I have come to realize that pretty much every single dang decision I’ve made financially for as long as I can remember has been made out of FEAR. And, well, that’s not good.

My husband and I had a major conversation this week, and we came to a mutual decision that the way things have been going, must change. Our babies are paying the price. We are a single income household, my hubby is in medical school and we are both fully aware money doesn’t grow on trees. But, we are meant to thrive, and I am unable to have my family thrive with the current state of affairs. So I am jumping off this cliff, and I know I will have moments where I regress and moments I don’t trust (thank heavens for grace and mercy) but it wouldn’t be a journey if it happened overnight and I am HUMAN. I shall work to have grace for myself. Let’s choose abundance you all, figure out our “hard”, and do it. Start now, where we are, just start.

EDITED TO ADD: this afternoon I ran into a dear member of my family who sent me this message below, God will always answer when our hearts cry out.

Jesus’ words ,found at Matthew 6:25-32. In part he said: “Stop being anxious about your souls as to what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your bodies as to what you will wear. . . . Observe intently the birds of heaven, because they do not sow seed or reap or gather into storehouses; still your heavenly Father feeds them. . . . Who of you by being anxious can add one cubit to his life span? Also, on the matter of clothing, why are you anxious? Take a lesson from the lilies of the field, how they are growing; they do not toil, nor do they spin . . . So never be anxious and say, ‘What are we to eat?’ or, ‘What are we to drink?’ or, ‘What are we to put on?’ For all these are the things the nations are eagerly pursuing. For your heavenly Father knows you need all these things.”

Easy Holiday Glam with SeneGence

Alright ladies I know this would usually have some fashion in it too but I have a super exciting collaboration coming later this week with swap.com so today I’ll just give you the glam! Hope you love it, as usual my babies make quite the adorable appearance (if I do say so myself!) xo!

Meant to thrive

Oh hey y’all, it’s been a hot minute since I wrote anything on here, life happened, (read on for more details on that) something had to give, and my blog did. I’m back though, this blog gives my heart such joy and it is my earnest hope and desire it brings joy to those who read it. I have met so many incredible mamas through this, and made so many precious friendships. Writing is also such a cathartic release for me, my creative soul has been feeling pretty suffocated lately and I am desperately trying to change things so it’s not so hard anymore. I saw a quote the other day that said something about if you don’t like your life then change it, and so I’m buckling my boots and getting to work on that.

Life happening the past couple months has consisted of work, being sick from work (as in CONSTANTLY SICK), a LOT of coffee and me tunneling into survival mode. Due to being sick I haven’t even been able to visit my sister in law after her kidney transplant, which has really made me sad. My hubby and I had slipped into “roommates” mode, you know y’all when life is so busy and you don’t tend to each other that can happen terrifyingly fast.

And then we had a false positive, I panicked, Brian was thrilled, the sweetheart, he’s amazing like that, and then right when I let my hear soar with excitement I found out at the less than empathetic urgent care the test was wrong. (And by less than empathetic I mean downright heartless. After spending two hours of waiting all by myself with the twins and trying to keep my wild little monkeys from licking all the terrifying germ covered surfaces at the clinic he barged in and unceremoniously. goes “MUST HAVE BEEN A SPONTANEOUS ABORTION”. It wasn’t, it was a false positive. BUT REGARDLESS my heart shattered right there and I wanted to simultaneously throw up, run away and sock him with his stethoscope, HARD).

And you know when you had no idea how badly you wanted something until you thought you had it and then you didn’t? Yeah. I was truly and utterly crushed. We weren’t even trying, and in full honesty I haven’t even been sure I wanted another one. Being a full time working mama with toddler twins and a husband in medical school is HARD. Bone. Crushing. Hard. It doesn’t mean I’m not grateful, but holy wow is it hard, through no fault of my husband I am rowing that single parent boat every day because he can’t be home that often and when he is he has to study, and the thought of adding another tiny one sent my panic through the roof. Until I thought another one was on the way. And then I ached for it. And I’ll admit I also I saw that third baby as maybe a way to stay home more, to work less, to have the postpartum experience I missed out on having with my precious twins since I had to go back to work so soon (three weeks postpartum!). But then I also started worrying, would another baby make it where I was even less present for my babies already here? I already feel they haven’t gotten enough of mommy, constantly dividing my attention makes me feel they never get enough.

And then I had started this new series of thrifted mama fashion on here and quickly disappeared and then I thought, WHY EVEN BOTHER. It’s felt ridiculous to justify dressing nicely and doing my makeup when all I do is wipe poopy bums shower and repeat and frankly I didn’t feel worth the effort. Add to this my general sense of failure due to the fact that I am a college graduate with a performance degree working as a non glorious nanny and this mama hasn’t been feeling so victorious.

But then I had a real come to Jesus moment mamas. I remembered that as a single income household we literally can’t break even paying for childcare for twins on my income alone, but even more importantly I chose to nanny so I could be with my babies that I had ached for for years. And I remembered I have a direct line to the man above, if my situation isn’t working and I’m this stressed, clearly He gives a toot and wants to help. If we decide we want more children, He cares. If I want to be home more with my children, He cares. And you know what else, HE CARES about us mamas feeling beautiful inside AND out. So I’m dusting off my stay at home mommy goals, buying a few more cans of dry shampoo and renewing my thriving instead of surviving efforts (and yes that includes charging after my thrifty mama series again!) And if it means wearing my super fun outfits to Costco for groceries then SO BE IT. Who says we can’t rock over the knee boots while shopping for broccoli and wearing a baby carrier?!

We are meant to thrive sweet mamas, not just survive. I’ll readily admit I’ve been doing quite a bit of surviving lately, quite a bit of misery and tears and aching heart, and yes even some self pity, and no I don’t have the whole thriving thing on perfect lockdown yet. But I’m working towards it and it’s going to happen. Because Jesus does love this hot mess (and thank Jesus for that!). 😂 Who’s with me mamas, let’s do this!

When it all gets to be a bit much…

It’s been (another) one of those weeks. You know the kind I’m talking about? Where no matter how carefully you plan, your plans blow up like a grenade hit them, one thing does lead to the other and no, absolutely none of it is something you can ignore and not deal with or there will be serious consequences. The coffee is ALWAYS cold no matter how many times you heat it, at least one of your children is constantly doing the finding boundaries/pushing buttons thing like their life depends on it (which in all fairness, it kind of does…) and the related tantrums to the boundary finding are ALWAYS in a public place you cannot escape from quickly and somehow always around judgmental folks that apparently were never children themselves but dropped from magical trees as fully poised perfectly behaved beings. And so you find yourself vacillating quicker than ever between feelings of passionate unstoppable burning love and pride in your kids and yourself to feeling like the most inept mother ever and wanting to drown in your continuously cold coffee.

I mean forget when it rains it pours cause sometimes it can feel more like when it rains it SNOW STORMS BIG A** ICE PELLETS.
I’ve set a scripture reminder to go off periodically through the day, and lately it’s been especially helpful. It doesn’t mean I am always zen and collected and that life never rattles me but at the least it helps me feel a tiny bit better because if nothing else because it reminds me I am trying. I read the scripture, and I take a big breath. It doesn’t mean I am instantly calm and everything falls immediately into place, but I am trying to be the best mom I can be. I do want to teach my kids to focus on the present, to let the past go, and to trust for the future. And it’s a struggle for me, some days more than others, but I AM TRYING.
And really that is what matters. We are trying. Even on the bad days, the failure days, the crawl under a blanket and cry by the potty days. We are trying. And really what does matter is how many times we get back up, not how many times we fall down. So cheers to cold coffee and warm hugs mamas, have a beautiful week!
Xo

Thrifted and Easy Date Night Outfit and Makeup Look

 

Hello again lovely mamas! I didn’t get to post last week because, well, mom life hit me hard. We were fighting a nasty cold and everything sort of snow piled. But we are finally on the mend (I hope/think….!!!) and I am so excited to share this Date Night look with you today. My hubby and I had originally planned to do a movie date (our first theater movie in yearsssss), but due to naps getting wonky we ended up just grabbing a quick drink instead and truly it was just what we needed. As promised, you will recognize some of these clothing pieces and makeup items from the previous look, and as always please comment or message me ANY questions! I’m so excited to be on this self love discovery journey with you mamas, putting these posts together for you is actually forcing me to grow A LOT, as I mentioned before I’ve always fought the guilt monster when practicing self care (even before motherhood) and taking time to shop for myself, put makeup on, and then take pictures (THAT I THEN POST FOR EVERYONE TO SEE!) is reallllllly taking me out of my comfort zone! Can’t wait to hear what ya’ll think of this week’s Thrifty Chic Mama! xo!

Thrift Map!

(Remember… screen shot this list for easy access at the thrift store!)

-Comfy, light colored straight leg stretch jeans (same jeans from the last outfit are perfect!)

-Long sleeve neutral solid colored stretchy/flowy shirt, (always size up if in doubt!) I chose a grey shirt with an embellishment on the neck (a small silver bar) (you can also use a chunky necklace!)

-Over sized solid dark colored sweater wrap (just make sure it is in a contrasting/complementary color to the shirt and the cozier and chunkier the better! Steer VERY clear of fitted, short length, button up cardigans…ick!)

 

-Tall black boots. (Don’t be afraid to invest in a good pair you’ll use them like crazy!)

Pair with this under ten minute date night makeup look and you’re ready to swoon your other half and kiss the night/(or in our case afternoon…!) away!

Beauty Map

Click here to visit my VIP group and contact me if you need any of these products or fill out the contact form below and I’ll get right back to ya! xo! <3)

Silk Pore and Wrinkle Minimizer

Porcelain MakeSense

Pearlizer MakeSense

Toasted Rose Blush

Shimmer Smoked Topaz ShadowSense

Pink Opal ShadowSense

Black LashSense

Roseberry LipSense

Praline Rose LipSense

Glossy Gloss

Thrifty Chic Mama Express-Fall 2017 Casual Everyday Look

Happy FRIDAY mamas! And welcome to the first Thrifty Chic Mama Express fashion post! First of all a HUGE shoutout to my own mama for her mad photography skills, thanks to her I have photos to feature in this post!

 

Today I’m going to share a simple fall look I gathered from the thrift store as well as a super easy daytime fall makeup look. My goal is to help you build a very affordable and versatile collection of clothing and makeup items that you can use a myriad of different ways. I will give you a list of items to search for with every outfit I’m calling it the Thrift Map, and a list of makeup items I’ll call the Beauty Map. We will reuse items very frequently! (But we will be the only ones who know that!) For your ease of use, I will provide a Thrift Map and Beauty Map for every single outfit/look, of course if you already own any of those items from before or a previous Thrifty Chic outfit, no need to purchase again! (Unless you want to, and especially since we are thrifting here, go for it!) And, one of the wonderful things about thrifting is, you can be completely on trend while simultaneously having a personalized one of a kind outfit.

One of my favorite aspects of fall clothing is the layers! Ahhhh the wonderful cozy layers! This outfit was super easy to piece together and I am excited to show you in the coming weeks how many different ways we can use the pieces!

Thrift Map!

(Pro tip: screen shot this list for easy access at the thrift store!)

-Comfy, light colored straight leg stretch jeans (it took me a couple trips to find my perfect pair, don’t despair if you don’t see your dream jeans the first trip!) Stay away from bootlegs and jeans with no pockets, those are often yuck on the butt! Make sure you get them long enough!

-White or light colored tank top, long (simply size up for an easy longer style!)

-Light colored, long sleeved over sized scoop neck t shirt (I went up two sizes for this one, if you wear a small, go large!)

-over sized dark colored cotton jacket (hint: if you’re having trouble finding this style of jacket, go to the men’s section and size down one!)

-multi colored large cotton or linen scarf (try to find one that has a small bit of the t shirt color you chose in it!)

-tall black boots. There are always gads of these in thrift shops! Pick comfortable ones!

Pair with this under ten minute fall makeup look and you’re ready to grab coffee or groceries in confidence, (or even an impromptu glass of wine!)

(PS..the video is slightly longer than ten minutes due to me explaining everything, fear not, this look will take you under ten minutes to complete!)

Easy Daytime Fall Makeup Look

(Beauty Map listed below!)

Beauty Map

(I will be utilizing the products that got me started on this fun adventure, click here to visit my VIP group and message me with questions or if you need any products or just fill out the contact form below and I’ll get back to you right away! xo! <3 )

MakeSense Foundation (I used Porcelain shade)

Berry toned Lip Color (I used Lexie Bear-y)

Black LashSense Mascara

Glossy Gloss or Matte Gloss (I used Glossy but matte is very in right now as well!)

Announcing Thrifty Chic Mama Express

Alright, I’m about to get super real with you all. Like bare it all real. And no better way than just to rip off the bandaid and jump right in, yes? So, here goes.

I have never felt ‘beautiful’ or ‘sexy’. Certainly not in my teenage years and it only got worse in college. Ok since we are being bare soul honest here it got WAY WORSE. I went to school with a bunch of girls who had both ample time and money to always look amazing and here I was, working all night catering and at Starbucks, very tired and soooo not wearing anything Prada. Fast forward to post twin pregnancy and let’s just say, my self image had definitely NOT improved. Ha. Who are we kidding, my self image went to the dumpster. And whew is it ever way too easy to continue wearing those old maternity clothes, whether they fit or not.

Add to that the mom guilt that taking care of myself somehow seemed selfish and proud, and enter the BEYOND Hot Mess Mom Express. I comforted myself that somehow I was a hero for not taking time to feel beautiful, that somehow not taking care of myself made me a better mother, that somehow sacrificing myself meant I loved my children more. Add to THAT looking at social media images of women and mothers who do take time to look presentable and have resources to do so and this mama went into a steep decline. I mean, WHY EVEN BOTHER bathing when I look this bad anyway! Comparison IS a thief of joy (note I said “A” thief not “THE” thief). But we cannot help but compare ourselves mamas, especially when you have hair that hasn’t been washed in lord knows how long and you’re hardcore stalking your Instagram mama friend who looks like she just stepped out of a professional Hollywood salon and has buns of steel to boot. (And there is NOTHING wrong with looking like that!!!)

Fast forward again to a few months ago when I was introduced to the makeup world by a lovely mama friend of mine. In short, that introduction started me on a journey that has changed more than I ever imagined it could. I chose to study to become a makeup artist, and see every day first hand the difference when I do a makeover on a tired mama who has forgotten or perhaps never really knew her own beauty. Chins lift, shoulders straighten, eyes brighten with renewed life. It’s not that it’s ‘just makeup’, it’s a tool to help women see themselves in a truer light, without our unkind self filtering system. I watch it help them see themselves as physically attractive, not just as tired, worn out, lumpy Mom Sacks. We view ourselves through such harsh, cruel filters mamas.

And, for the first time in my life, I am learning to see my own beauty. Even now I hardly have the guts to write that. I’ve deleted and rewritten it more times than you want to know. But I know I am not alone in this. And I know so many mamas can relate, so many are in this same place. And if there is one thing I want to do, it’s help us change how we see ourselves. For us. For our children. Because I want my children to see themselves so very differently than I have viewed myself all these years. Because mamas, THERE IS NOTHING WRONG IN FEELING BEAUTIFUL. I believe we were designed to feel beautiful, to celebrate it, to enjoy it. Beauty on the inside is what counts yada yada yes of course but if we feel ugly on the outside, inner beauty is dang hard to hold on to. It says in the Bible that God created us in His own image. And I’m willing to bet a lot that God’s image is not an ugly one. We were created beautiful. Inside and out.

Now, the facts are that many of us don’t have the resources for ample self care. In addition to fighting the mama guilt beast, us mamas don’t always have oodles of time, money and resources. And it’s hard to spend that time and resources when we have little people who genuinely need so much. But I have seen how important it is to see our own beauty mamas. To feel beautiful. To feel proud. And I know there is a way for us to overcome the guilt, to be and feel beautiful. And thus I am launching Thrifty Chic Mama Express to help us Hot Mess Express mamas remember how beautiful we are and remember we are WORTHY.

Once a week I will be publishing a post with a FASHIONABLE outfit, a makeup tutorial, sometimes a hairstyle or a small self care practice such as a helpful food or short exercise, or even a very simple self care DIY. The outfits will be made out of clothes I sourced from thrift stores and the makeup tutorial will be a look that takes ten minutes or less and teaches you how to maximize products. Every thing will be easy, affordable, and attainable. And if you’re like me, you’re thinking, GIRRRLL you cannot depend on what you find in thrift stores and it’s WAY overwhelming to even go look. But fear not mamas, I’ve been practicing and I am going to teach you all my thrift shopping ways. I get in there with twins, find what I’m looking for, and GET THE HECK OUT.

There will be no buy now option for the clothes, since, well, it will be from thrift stores. BUT they will be easy to replicate looks that I will be showing you how to use in multiple ways for multiple outfits. So no, you won’t have to buy a new outfit every week, I’m going to show you how I get basics that can be changed around so many ways. And I will also be showing you how to maximize what you need for makeup.

I am so excited to do this journey together mamas, and I truly hope I can play a small part in helping you remember and celebrate how beautiful each of you truly is. I’ll be publishing the first Thrifty Chic Mama Express post this weekend, I can’t wait to hear what you think.

Love,

Robin