Stilettos and Diapers: November 2015


Middle Child Syndrome

Middle child syndrome. It's a thing, y'all. I know it's real because I am a middle child. Well, I was for 14 years before my parents had more kids. Anyway, being stuck in the middle of 2 children has it's ups and downs. The downs are bigger, in my opinion, and it's worse when it's all the same gender. The firstborn can do all the big kid things and is the chosen one who can do no wrong. The baby is just that, babied and has a way of getting any and everything they want. The middle is, well, stuck in the middle.

This is why I may have a soft spot for this guy. 

I don't have a favorite child, but I feel like he needs my attention just a little bit more than the others. So when he gets a new FabKids outfit in the mail and is ready for his photo shoot "just like mommy", then we do it! 

This wild, tester of my patience will always own that soft spot in my heart. Even when he throws himself on the floor in a fit over putting on shoes. Wearing shoes in public is over rated anyway. 

Sickies and Shopping

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend with my family! Since Thanksgiving, I've had one child throwing up, one child with a 101 fever and a really fussy baby. It's going to be pajamas around here. The only upside is CYBER MONDAY! I literally have 4 more gifts to buy and I'm about to knock them out with my cup of coffee in hand and Paw Patrol in the background. 

Some of my favorite stores are having great sales you don't want to miss!

Forever 21: 21% off when you spend $21 or more and free shipping with code CYBER21

Gap / Old Navy / Banana Republic : 40% off site wide with code BESTCYBER (They never don't have exclusions, so I'm really excited about these!)

J. Jill: 30% off + free shipping with code FREESHIP

Target: 15% off all day with CYBER15

Rack Room Shoes: 20% off + BOGO 50% off + free shipping with code WEBDEAL

Express: 50% off site wide, no code needed

Macy's: Tons of doorbuster, 20% off with code CYBER, free shipping over $25

My boutique, Molly Suzanne, has 50% off clearance with code CM50 or 25% off your purchase with code CM25.

Here are some things that I've bought, have or love. I'm doing a little shopping for myself using some gift cards up from my birthday!

Happy Shopping!


What Molly Wore: Fall Style

Instastyle coming right at you! I haven't been wearing much exciting stuff since having Lincoln, but there sure is a lot of cozy in this round up!

Dress: Molly Suzanne | Booties: old, similar

Leggings: Target | Tunic: J. Jill

Dress: Pink Blush | Chambray: Forever 21 | Booties: sold out, similar 

Sweatshirt : J. Jill | Leggings: J. Jill (my fave and on sale!) | Carrier: Baby Bjorn One

Shirt: J. Jill | Vest: Avery Lane Boutique | Booties: Rack Room | Scarf: Molly Suzanne

Tee: Blanqi | Joggers: Target (mine are little girls, but they have some very similar in women's)

Tee: Target | Leggings: J. Jill (favorite again!) | Chambray: Forever 21 | Boots: Hunter | Sunnies: Target

My family is all on their way here right now and I'm so excited! I need to be cleaning and making more beds but I don't mind the long nursing sessions that make me sit and allow me to one hand type. I just blew through Target along with all the other last minute crazies and will soon be cooking up a storm. Lots of southern goodness is on our menu, finishing with my MIL's NY cheesecake. Good thing we're running a turkey trot 5k in the morning before all the food goes down! 

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm grateful for y'all reading my blog and for this fun outlet of mine! 


How To Use Target Cartwheel App

Do you guys use Target's Cartwheel app? I am seriously obsessed with it and use it every single time I go to the store. Currently, my savings are at $541.11 (up $130 in 2 months!) and that is without a couple big ticket items ringing up properly. For example, I saved $45 on a deck box, but that isn't even reflected! 
How to use Target Cartwheel, Target coupons

I really love saving money. Sometimes, that means buying unnecessary things, which I'm really trying hard not to do. At the end of the day, that's not saving at all. So I feel like if I do a little planning ahead, I can avoid buying all the sale items and just the ones that will actually be put to good use. Cartwheel is just such an easy way to save a lot and I think everyone should use it! Getting into the Christmas shopping time, I wanted to tell you some tips for using the app that help me.

First step: Before I leave the house, I search the offers by discount. Using the 3 line drop down menu on the left, select offers. It will automatically be on all offers, so when you slide the screen back over to the left, you can sort at the top by discount. There you will see all the things that are the most discounted at the top. 

How to use Target Cartwheel, save money at Target

I love starting that way so I can see if there are food items that I would normally buy generic of, Christmas gifts, or just something fun I want to try! Some favorite current offers are 25% Hefty trash bags, 20% Simply Orange juice, 25% off Philadelphia cream cheese, 30% off jeans for the whole family, 25% off C9 tops and sports bras. Through Christmas, Cartwheel has a 50% off coupon every day for a different toy. I've been checking every morning to see if the toy is on any of my shopping lists. I already got one thing that was $30 for $15. Can't beat it! I like Luna bars for on the go eating and got several boxes for 50% off last week. 

Once I'm at the store, I follow my list and use the scanner to scan items as I put them in my cart. Most of the times, I can get 5% or so off my regularly purchased items, like paper plates, or anything market pantry brand. The more you save, the more spaces you have to add more coupons. Now I have a lot of spaces open, I leave several 5-10% coupons on there, so I'm saving a couple bucks every time without even trying. It isn't much, but it sure does add up! Pair that with my 5% red card and it's a really good savings! I'd like to think I'm a good couponer, but I'm really not. I will occasionally clip them and usually forget them. It's just a lot to keep up with when you're shopping with little ones! This app is easy and a good way for me to cut down on the Target bill! 

Hope these little tips help you save some money on your next Target trip! 

Oh and by the way, as much as I wish Target was paying me for this post, they're not. I'm just talking about what I love. Ha! 


Belly Bandit - My Results

This post is really putting myself out there! But I'm really excited to share my Belly Bandit results with y'all. I've never worn any kind of wrap after babies, but I wanted to try it this time. I absolutely loved wearing the Belly Bandit. It's a very tight fitting binder that you wear immediately after delivery and it's supposed to support core muscles, minimize stretch marks, help you lose inches and accelerate healing. 

I was very bruised all over my torso after this baby. I'm not sure why, but it was too painful to touch, much less wrap up tightly. So, it was about 5 days after Lincoln was born before I started wearing it. Here's a reminder of my big ole baby bump before delivery. 

And here's what I looked like 2 days postpartum, without wearing the Belly Bandit yet. 

Once I was comfortable enough to put the wrap on, it was heavenly. After a c-section, it's very sensitive around the incision and you feel like you'll pop open anytime you cough, sneeze or laugh. The Belly Bandit held everything together and was so comfortable. My back felt better, my incision felt safer and I looked instantly skinner! This was 1 week postpartum, 2 days of wearing the Belly Bandit. 

Here is 3 weeks pp and I was then wearing the wrap during the day for a few hours. Nothing too much, but I was really happy with my results even at that point. 

1 month pp, I was even flatter. 

Now here is 8 weeks pp, right before started working out. This will be the before to my after picture this spring! 
Overall, I am very pleased with how helpful the Belly Bandit was for me. If you've had a c-section, you know how uncomfortable it can be to have a baby on your stomach while you nurse and how hard it is to get up and down out of bed. The Belly Bandit helped both of those things so much. If I was having another baby, I would hands down use it again! My one and only downside, was that I have a short torso. I'm only 5'2", so when I wrapped it low enough to be around my hip bones, it was still up to my bra. I think the only issue that caused, was that it liked to ride up a bit. Not enough for me to stop wearing it or not wear it again. I highly recommend it to everyone having a baby! 

Did you wear any kind of binder post baby? 


Cleaning Tips for New Moms

It's a week before Thanksgiving and I'm in mad cleaning mode. There will be 16 people here for the holidays this year and the prepping is intense. Add in a new baby who really loves constant momma snuggles and you can imagine how much is getting done! 

Cleaning is something that I really enjoy. I function so much better when my house is clean and I feel so productive after I've cleaned up. I'm a big fan of my cleaning schedule and keeping my house in a constant clean. But, since having Lincoln, a lot of the cleaning has fallen by the wayside. It's a struggle to keep up with it all right now! Here are some things that are helping me stay sane when my house can't be perfect. 

Make a list of the most important things that need to be done. Laundry and dishes are always top of the list, since they're necessities. Don't stress over the dust on your fans or handprints on your windows!

Toy Storage
My boys toys are never in the playroom. They take over my entire house. When we moved here, we bought a coffee table that's also a chest. The Hubs just told me a few days ago that it's the best investment we ever made. Hehe. It's so easy to throw the stuff in there and they don't complain about having to haul it all upstairs. I just clean it out every few months when it starts to get full.

Laundry Baskets
Every family member has their own laundry basket here. That way, if I don't get the laundry folded for a few days (or weeks) people can still find their clothes. It works great for our family. 

Clean 1 space
If there is somewhere I can go that is clean in my house, it's a big exhale for me. My front living room is rarely used and always a nice spot to go nurse away from the mess. I also try to keep one bathroom clean, so I can direct guests to the one without a ring in the toilet. 

Pick Your Poison
Everyone has something that makes them crazy if it's not done. Mine are the floors. When my floors are clean, I think it makes a big difference in the look of the house. Since I have kids, there are crumbs everywhere. All the time. I usually sweep at least a couple times a day in the "problem areas". Problem is, we have dark hardwood on the entire downstairs of our house and it shows everything. Since it normally takes me an hour to clean the floors, I needed another solution. 

Introducing my new best friend:

The Hoover Cordless 2-in-1 Stick and Handheld Vacuum. It's been amazing over the past couple weeks and I can finally have my floors looking clean without being such a pain. 

This is the spot my boys always eat = problem area #1.
The crumbs below that island are insane. This was just after breakfast one morning. If I go all day without sweeping, it looks like I've never cleaned the floors at all. 
My new Hoover is cordless, has a hardwood setting and turns on a dime, making it so easy to clean. I can hit under the island and the table in a couple minutes and do the whole downstairs in about 15. A switch changes it from hardwood to carpet setting, so I can run it over my rugs without missing a beat. 

It also has the removable handheld vacuum that pops right out to use in corners and under my couch cushions. I love how light it is, how easy it is to maneuver and how well it works. I can do my whole downstairs on one charge and just put the lithium battery on the charger to be ready for the next day. The battery fits with any of Hoover's 3 cordless vacuums and their cordless hard floor wet cleaner.
I really think this one should go on the baby registry. It's exactly what this mama needed to be able to have my space a bit cleaner, even in the midst of this boy filled house! 

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the 
content and opinions expressed here are all my own.


Recipe: Caramel Apple Spice Cocktail

Before we go hustling off towards Christmas, I'm excited for Thanksgiving next week! I've teamed up with 13 awesome bloggers to give you the best for turkey day, all together in one spot! Check out my yummy Thanksgiving cocktail, then hop on over to everyone else to get your crafts, appetizers, tablescapes and more!  

Back in the day, when I was in nursing school, I paid the bills by whipping up fancy drinks at Starbucks. One of my favorite drinks then, and still to this day, is the Caramel Apple Cider.

It's now known as Caramel Apple Spice, but is still the same delicious drink, made with apple juice, cinnamon syrup, whipped cream and caramel drizzle. I would often recommend this drink to people who weren't coffee drinkers, or who just wanted something different during the cold New York fall and winter. It's also my go to now, when I find myself at Target in the afternoon and don't want any more caffeine. Sold yet? Good. 

Now that I'm old enough for the liquor store, I find it fun to use my barista knowledge in making cocktails. This one, it's just perfect for fall. Simple to make and topped with caramel. There is nothing bad topped with caramel, FYI. 

Caramel Apple Spice Cocktail

8oz apple juice

1 1/2 oz rum (I use light, but I bet dark would be good, too!)
1/2 oz cinnamon schnapps
Whipped cream 
Caramel drizzle (I use ice cream topping in a squirt bottle)

In the microwave or stovetop, heat apple juice to 160 degrees, or desired temperature. Stir in rum and cinnamon schnapps. Top with whipped cream and drizzle with caramel. Add a cinnamon stick if you're really trying to impress people. Snuggle by the fire and enjoy! 

Ready for some hopping? Here are the other fabulous girls and their Thanksgiving day goodness! 

Hostess Ideas: Hey Thuy 
What to Wear: Fancy Ashley 
Appetizer: Sandy a la Mode 
Printable: Taz and Belly 
Drink/Cocktail: Stilettos and Diapers 
Drink/Cocktail: I Love You More Than Carrots 
Kids Craft: Momfessionals 
Kid Craft: The Vanilla Tulip 
Dessert: Just Destiny 
Hostess Ideas: My Life Well Loved


Fashion || Red Suede and Stripes

This week, it's gotten cool here! While I'm a pretty strong advocate of one holiday at a time, I've already purchased a couple Christmas things and have been seriously tempted to pull out my decorations. I'm going to hang in there another 12 days until we get our tree, though! 

I just got these pointy toe flats from Rack Room Shoes and thought they may fill the holiday bug for now. Red and suede scream Christmas to me! 
Striped Turtleneck, Red Suede Pointy Toe Shoes

Prada Sunglasses, Statement necklace, Striped turtleneck, denim jacket

Striped Turtleneck, Red Suede Pointy Toe Shoes, Denim Jacket

Prada Sunglasses, Statement necklace, Striped turtleneck, denim jacket
Prada Sunglasses, Statement necklace, Striped turtleneck, denim jacket 
leggings, red suede pointy toe flats
Shoes: Rack Room Shoes c/o | Pants: J. Jill (My FAVE leggings and on sale for $29.99!) | Turtleneck: Forever 21 | Jacket: Aeropostale, old, similar here | Necklace: Molly Suzanne | Sunglasses: Prada via DITTO (Use code STILETTODIAPERS for your first month free!)

Pointy toe flats are back again this fall, y'all! I love wearing them because I feel like they're a bit dressier than a round toe flat and make my generally casual outfits a bit more fun. Rack Room has you covered, including one of this fall's hottest version, the lace up! 


Paw Patrol Party!

Paw Patrol Birthday Party with food, tablescape, goodie bag ideas and free printables.

Callan had such a fun 4th Birthday party! It was his first friend party and my hardest time to prep. Having just had a baby, I didn't have the energy to do as much planning and prepping as I like to. Thank goodness that he chose a theme that was so easy right now, with tons of party stuff available! I did a Mustache Bash before mustaches were the thing, a Ninja Turtle party right before the new movie came out and a Disney Cars and Toy Story party far passed it's prime. Needless to say, I was ready for a pretty easy party and that's just what this one was. 

Paw Patrol Birthday Party

I got the cake at Target and they had 2 different Paw Patrol options.

Paw Patrol Birthday Party

My first attempt at royal icing was on the paw and bone cookies. It was a bit time consuming, but so fun! And now that I have the hang of it, I will absolutely be making them in the future. I think they look so professional.

Paw Patrol Birthday Party Food, Tablescape

Along with the cookies, I made "puppy chow" chex mix and a tray of "ruff-age". 

Paw Patrol Birthday Party Food Ideas

We had a hot dog bar on the table, with chili in the crock pot. I forgot to chop the onion at the last minute!

Paw Patrol Birthday Party, Hot Dog Bar

Paw Patrol Birthday Party

We served the pup-corn in the dog bowls covered with bones, just like the cookies and puppy chow.

Paw Patrol Birthday Party Food Ideas

Since Callan is really into Paw Patrol, he of course had lots of toys to help decorate. I put out almost all the toys he had, which made for great decorations.

Paw Patrol Birthday Party Puppy Chow Food

Paw Patrol Birthday Party paw and bone cookies

Paw Patrol Birthday Party food

I hit the jackpot at Dollar Tree and Walmart for the goodie bags. Molded crayons, bracelets, cups, stickers, puzzles and play packs were all inside.

Paw Patrol Birthday Party goodie bags

I topped the bag with these printables that I could put everyones name on.

Paw Patrol Birthday Party doggie bags

Paw Patrol Birthday Party Goodie Bags

The party was a complete success! Especially for my big 4 year old! 

Paw Patrol Birthday Party

Here are all the details of where things are from, in case you're party planning! 

Doggie Bag Printable: Free via Nick Jr
Food Tents: Free Printable via Delicate Construction (She has other Paw Patrol printables, too!)
Paw and bone cookie cutters: Walmart, also available from Amazon
Bone dog bowls: Dollar Tree 
Table cloth, plates, napkins and banner: Walmart

Goodie Bags Fillers:
Cups, bracelets and play packs: Walmart
Puzzles, stickers and molded crayons: Dollar Tree

Amazon, my BFF, has tons of options for a Paw Patrol party, too:

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