Entries Tagged as 'lists'

in my bag | hospital edition.

Posted on: Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Now that I’m convinced this baby is going to happily inhabit my body from now until the end of time, I thought it would be a good opportunity to showcase what’s in my hospital bag. You know, just in case it ever gets put to use.

What's in My Hospital Bag | Ann-Marie Loves

  • Faux Leather Bag. I found this bag months ago at Forever 21 knowing that it would make for a stylish diaper bag. Turns out, it’s also been a great bag for weekend getaways, overnight stays at my parents’ house, and now, a place to house all of the items I think I will need during my (hopefully!) short stay at the hospital. This is just my personal bag; John has his own and the baby has her own. Clearly we don’t mess around when it comes to spending a few nights three miles away from home ;)
  • Electronics. Camera, iPhone, chargers. All the important things we will need to document this exciting time!
  • Nursing bras. I picked up a few soft nursing bras at Target that were relatively cheap and can translate from daytime wear to sleepwear easily.
  • Nursing-friendly tops and nightgowns. Apparently, easy access is what this whole postpartum fashion situation is all about! Luckily, I found some pieces that are super comfy AND cute, whether or not the rest of me looks like a hot mess.
  • Granny Panties. I’ll admit that I resisted spending money on giant undies for quite some time, but once I got home and gave them a whirl, I was kind of in love. They’re so comfortable!
  • Bathrobe. This item was a tip from my good friend Elise and I imagine it will come in handy long after we leave the hospital. I found mine at Target for a great deal, so I won’t feel bad about getting it dirty and throwing it in the wash on a regular basis.
  • Gap Supersoft LeggingsI know I keep mentioning these leggings over and over again, but seriously, they’re the best. This particular style is perfect since the waistband is low rise and won’t get in the way of lingering baby bumps.
  • Toiletries. Deodorant, makeup, toilet paper, lotion, several tubes of Carmex, shampoo, face cleanser, body wash, razor, toothbrush + toothpaste, etc. All the key ingredients to making a sterile hospital room feel more like home.
  • Snacks. I really love the team of doctors that have been taking care of me these past nine (or in my case, nine hundred) months for countless reasons, but one of the biggest factors is their forward-thinking approach to labor and delivery. They buck tradition and encourage moms to stay hydrated and energized during the whole process through easy-to-digest food and drinks. I eagerly took their advice and stocked up on lollipops, granola bars, mints, and gum for John and I to snack on as the hours roll by.
  • Domino Magazine. To be honest, I have no idea if I will have the time (or the energy!) to read a magazine during my hospital stay, but I thought I would bring it in case Instagram can no longer hold my attention (as if!).
  • BoppyEveryone needs a Boppy, right? Mine is currently sitting in the backseat of the car, decked out in the cream + gold cover I purchased off Etsy.
  • Etc. Hospital registration forms, insurance card, birth plan, pillows, car seat…all the fun stuff.

Now if we could just get this party started…

full term!

Posted on: Monday, July 14, 2014

Full Term! | Ann-Marie Loves

Being full-term means:

My wedding ring no longer fits my finger (which is good for my skin since I’ve recently developed an allergy to it! GAH.)

Trying to finish up last minute projects as fast as possible.

I’m never too far from my bottle of Tums. Heartburn continues to be the one constant throughout my whole pregnancy. (Maybe it’s because she has a full head of hair?)

Getting up in the middle of the night for the umpteenth bathroom trip and realizing “OMG, I’m going to be awake at this hour every night!

Savoring these last few weeks of being pregnant. Despite minor discomforts along the way, I have LOVED this experience.

Riding waves of being super tired and waves of being super energized. I never know what each day (or rather, each hour!) will bring.

I am much smaller and more able-bodied than I thought I would be at this point (which is not to say that I’m by ANY MEANS small or super able-bodied in comparison to others; just different than I imagined).

Visiting the doctor on a weekly basis.

My belly button is officially inside out.

Being on high alert for any signs of impending labor (“Is that a contraction? Is THAT a contraction?”). So far, no real signs.

Writing the shortest birth plan of all time:

  1. Walk into hospital pregnant.
  2. Walk out of hospital with a healthy baby. All the rest will be figured out when I get there!

The shape of my bump sadly does not allow me to use it as a table for food and drinks. The drop-off is far too steep.

Drinking lots and lots of water, from the time I get up to the time I go to bed.

Trying not to dwell on the logistics of actually popping this kid out. Oh lordy.

Wondering when (if?) the waddling stage will begin.

My hands fall asleep ALL. THE. TIME. I get that weird prickling sensation not just when I’m sleeping (although that’s the most common time), but also when I’m in the middle of a hand-intensive task. Um, hi, I was still using you?

Getting more and more excited everyday! All these months of planning, dreaming, shopping, decorating, worrying, and reveling are about to pay off in a BIG way.

Hoping for a happy, healthy baby above all else.

I have no idea what I’m doing. But I’m doing it.

as of late | july edition.

Posted on: Monday, July 7, 2014

As of Late | July Edition | Ann-Marie Loves

Essentials for this past weekend.

Getting: overly excited about the holiday season! I’m already dreaming of all the crafts I want to make, all the photos I want to take, and all the new traditions I want to start with my little family! I feel a holiday e-course coming on…

Realizing: that my “As of Late” post for August will probably be VERY different.

Spending: way too much time on the phone with my health insurance company. A word of advice: understand your out-of-pocket costs BEFORE you get pregnant. #holystickershock

Selling: a pair of unworn clogs that are sadly too small for my jumbo preggo feet over here.

Reading: The Honest Life by Jessica Alba. My friend Jaymee gave it to me as a baby shower gift and I am loving every minute of it! (P.S. I totally need to write a post about unexpected baby shower gifts that turned out to be my faves.)

Reorganizing: every closet, every cabinet, every drawer in this house. So dang inspired by Joy’s and Emily’s recent closet makeovers!

Despising: how dirty my feet get after a day of wearing sandals. I don’t know why it bothers me so much, but ugh. CAN’T HANDLE.

Loving: Ritz crackers with banana slices + a (generous) handful of chocolate chips, microwaved for 22 seconds (I always choose random numbers when miking). Maybe I love it a little too much.

Jumping: for joy over the crazy discount I just got on an Ergo baby carrier! After my sister-in-law told me about the deal, I had that thing in my cart and en route to my house in no time at all! (And dare I say, we’re now officially ready for the baby to arrive…?)

Staying: very busy with work and preparing for baby and keeping this house as clean + organized as possible. I love how good it feels to climb into bed after having a productive day!

Using: not one, not two, but THREE fans in our bedroom when we go to sleep at night. It’s like white noise / wind tunnel heaven in there.

Taking: more hot weather-induced naps than usual, in the aforementioned white noise / wind tunnel heaven ;)

Deciding: that being 37 weeks pregnant (full-term!) calls for a discount code celebration! Save 37% off all printables and e-courses in my shop from now until Friday 7/11 using the code THIRTYSEVEN.

workspace wednesday | free project list printable.

Posted on: Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Free Project List Printable | Designed by Ann-Marie Loves

At any given point in time, I have an ongoing list of a million and one projects that I want to accomplish, like, yesterday. While some of them can be achieved in a single step, others take several steps to finish. So instead of writing “decorate the nursery” on my to-do list day after day, knowing full-well that it will never to be crossed off, I’ve created a free printable that turns big projects into bite-size tasks.

 Free Project List Printable | Designed by Ann-Marie Loves

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD

Free Project List Printable | Designed by Ann-Marie Loves

P.S. I talk at greater length about the idea of breaking down projects into manageable chunks and include a more comprehensive list printable in my e-course “Make It Happen!”

as of late | june edition.

Posted on: Monday, June 2, 2014

As of Late | June Edition | Ann-Marie Loves

And the great changing table mobile prototyping of 2014 continues…

Coming: to terms with the fact that most of my shoes no longer fit my feet. The first time I noticed this was two weekends ago when I put on my (normally) loose-fitting tennis shoes and noticed that they were super snug. Then! The next day when I went to put on my favorite pair of booties, I couldn’t even get the zipper up! So it seems as though the fashion forecast is calling for flip flops and running shoes from here on out.

Sleeping: in and not feeling the tiniest bit of guilt about it. Late nights and early mornings are in my very near future. But for now? Blissful, uninterrupted stretches of my favorite pastime.

Reading: Great with Child, after several people recommended it to me. OMG. So good.

Reveling: in the small things these days. Natural light in the kitchen and bathroom. Beautiful baby shower invitations. Never-ending group text messages with good friends. Iced coffee with milk. Wedding photos (finally) on display in our home. Watching the baby roll around. The season finales of Modern Family and Parks + Rec.

Limiting: my thrifting trips to one day a week. Sometimes I just have to be honest with myself and reign it in.

Listening: to this song over and over (and over) again.

Taking: on projects that are slightly out of my wheelhouse, but as a result, are pushing me to grow my skills and build my repertoire (insert thumbs up emoji here).

Feeling: incredibly grateful to everyone who has purchased my latest e-course! (And all of the previous ones as well!) I have two more in the works that I am hoping to launch before the baby arrives, but I would love to hear your ideas about anything you want to see :)

Designing: new printables.

Crying: over everything and I MEAN EVERYTHING. Even the most mundane of circumstances will elicit crocodile tears. (I’m tearing up as I write this post.) (Not really.) (But kind of.)

Struggling: with super uncomfortable knots in my upper back when I lay down at night. Luckily, I’ve found that heating up one of those heavyweight eye masks in the microwave and plopping it on my back will usually loosen things riiiight up.

Tackling: my extensive list of things to do before a certain child arrives. Slowly but surely, I’m getting there.

Wishing: my fridge was perpetually stocked with watermelon slices. Please?

Finding: cool moms with stylish children and beautifully-designed nurseries on Instagram is one of my greatest sources of joy. (I’ll share my favorites soon!)

Nesting: mode is full-steam ahead and I love every minute of it.

Realizing: I have plans every single weekend from now until July. And then in July…baby time. WHOA.

friday!

Posted on: Friday, May 30, 2014

Art by Lisa Congdon | via Ann-Marie Loves

lllustration by Lisa Congdon

Even though I work from home and Mondays and Fridays are virtually the same thing, Friday is definitely my favorite day of the week. I love the last minute rush to get projects completed before John picks me up from my walk on his way home and we discuss our weekend plans (or even better, our lack thereof). With just a few short weeks to go before a certain someone makes her debut, I’m savoring every last moment that I have with my husband all to myself ;)

Here are links to fun things that caught my attention this past week:

- My friend Eva’s gorgeous family + nursery on 100 Layer Cakelet.

- Jess Lively’s interview with Victoria Smith on the latest episode of The Lively Show.

- This Ron Swanson quote which perfectly sums up the way I feel 99% of the time.

- An impossibly cute dream catcher tutorial.

- A Paper Party! Can this be the theme of all of my birthdays from here on out?

- The adorable video promo for what I imagine to be an adorable book! (So many kids’ crafts books that I want!)

- This round-up of bunny love. (P.S. Have you seen this site before? Incredible!)

- Oh Joy’s beautifully colorful recount of her trip to London.

- These pastel wedding bouquets! They couldn’t be more opposite than the arrangements I chose, but SO STUNNING.

Happy Friday! Have a wonderful weekend!

“Make It Happen” E-Course is Now Live!

Posted on: Thursday, May 29, 2014

Make It Happen | An E-Course on Getting Things Done | by Ann-Marie Espinoza

Happy Thursday! I’m so excited to finally be launching my “Make It Happen” e-course! In this class, I cover all sorts of tips and tricks for getting things done and feeling good about yourself. It’s very akin to my Workspace Wednesday series, except in much greater length and detail.

Make It Happen | An E-Course on Getting Things Done | by Ann-Marie Espinoza

“Make It Happen” includes advice on:

- overcoming those inevitable creative blocks
- developing up a rewards system that fuels you to power through any task
- knowing when to take a break and when to push through
- setting deadlines and sticking to them
- determining your ideal workflow

The class also comes with a free goal setting + achieving printable worksheet that will help you break down any project into bite-size, manageable steps.

Make It Happen | An E-Course on Getting Things Done | by Ann-Marie Espinoza

As a creative freelancer for the past two years, I’ve learned a ton about what it takes to stay on top of my to-do list and make things happen for myself time and time again. I can’t wait to share my knowledge with you!

To purchase “Make It Happen” (for only $9!), click HERE.

workspace wednesday | to-do list printables.

Posted on: Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Free To-Do List Printables | Ann-Marie Loves

This week my motivation has been, umm…nonexistent? Between warmer weather, a seemingly never-ending to-do list, and a baby that provides endless entertainment with her constant swift kicks, let’s just say I am in need of serious FOCUS. So! I figured I would put off my to-do list just a little bit longer (ironic, much?) and design some new printables featuring some of my favorite quotes from my “Agree” board.

Free To-Do List Printables! | Ann-Marie Loves

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD

Free To-Do List Printables! | Ann-Marie Loves

Wednesday, you’re looking better and better already ;)

P.S. There are more free printables for the taking!

P.P.S. You can hear the conversation I had with my good friend (and blogging idol!) Elise on this week’s episode of her new podcast!

this phase of life.

Posted on: Monday, April 28, 2014

Things I'm Loving | Ann-Marie Loves

Things I love about this phase of life:

  • The commencement of nesting mode. I am here to attest that planning a nursery is officially more fun than planning a wedding. There. It had to be said.
  • Having my longstanding suspicions that I have the greatest parents on the planet confirmed. This past weekend, they pulled out my brother’s and my old crib AND a giant (and I mean giant) box of toys that they had been saving for future grandkids. And gave them all to me. (Thank you Mom + Dad!)
  • Getting lost in page after gorgeous page of The Glow (shown above). Their website is one of my go-to sources for inspiration so it was a no-brainer that I needed this book in my collection.
  • Debating between the Baby Jogger City Mini and the Britax B-Agile strollers and having full confidence that either option will be a slam dunk. Also, who says “slam dunk?”
  • Stretching out my time in bed each morning to catch up on Instagram, respond to a few e-mails, and feel the baby karate chop like crazy. I’m savoring as much of my leisure time – and SLEEP! –  as possible while I still have it!
  • Listening to John recount the dreams he had about our daughter from the previous night. I especially love when he has a clear vision of what she looks like!
  • Swinging by Kid Firefly (and Urbanic, of course!) for a little toy shopping on my way home from Santa Monica yesterday.
  • Knitting matching headbands for the baby and me when I should be working. Priorities.
  • Doing a little late night damage on Etsy for nursery decor. (P.S. Want to know the best way to find fantastic shops with well-designed products amidst the thousands + thousands of sellers on Etsy? Find one shop that you love and then look at what items they have added to their favorites. Repeat the process with every new shop you stumble upon. That’s the only way I’ve been able to discover so many gems!)
  • Feeling incredibly lucky every single day.

workspace wednesday | generating blog posts ideas.

Posted on: Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Generating Blog Post Ideas | Ann-Marie Loves

One of the biggest hang-ups that I hear about blogging on a regular basis is the issue of trying to come up with enough content to generate post after post, day after day. I know I struggled with that mental block for years! But ever since I made the decision to write five posts per week, the momentum of the commitment has carried me through and given me more ideas than I ever thought possible! Here’s how I do it:

Generating Blog Post Ideas | Ann-Marie Loves

Brainstorm. To begin with, I always break out my notebook and start brainstorming ideas about posts I’d love to write / create / photograph in the near future. At this stage in the game, I don’t judge my ideas; I simply write them down as they come and move on to the next.

Think about the time involved. Once I have a solid list built up, I think about the logistics of each post and approximate how long it would take me to pull it all together. For instance, a DIY post can take a solid chunk of time, so I plan for it to go live further down the road. But posts about how I’m styling my house or what I’m loving at the moment? I can put those together with minimal planning involved.

Pinpoint recurring posts. Being able to count on recurring posts to fill in gaps is a great way to bulk up my editorial calendar. For example, I like to write Workspace Wednesday posts once a week and provide updates on my baby album at least twice a month.

Let life be your guide. I have to say…getting married and having a baby has done WONDERS for my blog post ideas. I mean, it’s almost like free material! Using the current events in my life as a compass for sharing my story while still contributing relevant ideas to the interwebs (i.e. designing wedding decor, planning a big event on a budget, decorating a nursery, etc) has made scheduling posts a million times easier.

Go with the flow. Even if I have a rough outline about the topics I want to cover in a week, I like to leave a bit of wiggle room for spontaneous post ideas. Lately I’ve been composing the majority of my blog posts in e-mails to myself late at night as I’m getting ready for bed. That’s when all of my clearest thought patterns arise, so I grab my phone and furiously take notes! In the morning, I copy / paste my words into blog posts and then take photos to correspond with each topic.

Prioritize. Let’s say I have a photo-heavy post planned for tomorrow, but the sun is going down and I have run out of time to take decent pictures. That’s when I put that idea on the backburner and use another day’s post in the interim. While I value photos and words pretty evenly, the quality of my images takes the cake as the most important aspect of my blog. All of my pictures must pass my own self-imposed test of “Would I pin this?” If the answer is yes, I happily add it to the post. If the answer is no, well, it’s back to the drawing board. Figuring out what matters most to you is key to lasting success.

Take 30% off ALL rubber stamps using the code "FLASH5" until 3/6/14 at midnight! | Ann-Marie Loves Paper on Big Cartel

P.S. I’m having a flash sale on ALL rubber stamps in my shop! Use the code “FLASH5″ from now until Thursday night (3/6/14) at midnight to stock up and save!

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