mobile December 2016The Cocooners: December 2016

Celebrate with a PinkBlush Giveaway {Closed}

Friday, December 30, 2016
I have so many things to celebrate: a new, healthy baby boy, Dax transitioning so well at being a big brother, my husband being at my beck-and-call while I couldn't drive (ok, so exaggerating a bit but he's been awesome), a New Year on the horizon, and wonderful readers and friends like you who support this blog.  Life is good.

To celebrate, I partnered with PinkBlush to host a great Giveaway where one lucky Cocooner reader can win a $75 gift card to shop their online boutique! 

I found PinkBlush about midway during this last pregnancy.  Their selection of trendy and affordable maternity options was just what I needed to up my maternity style.  I purchased a couple of tops and received many compliments when I wore them.  Now that I'm transitioning away from maternity clothes and dressing my postpartum body, I wanted to showcase how versatile their pieces are with this great sweater I'm wearing.  Not only do I love the colors and cut (I have a weird thing for drop shoulders), but the fabrication is so soft.  I didn't feel self-conscious in this at all when I went to my 2 week post-op check up.  Everyone at my doctor's office said I looked great.  That made my dayA lot of PinkBlush's maternity pieces are postpartum friendly but they also have a great selection of non-maternity pieces as well as baby gear.  You can spend hours on their site.  And they always have great sales.  I love it!  I also ended up falling in love with this dress and can't wait to wear it.  Maybe it will be my NYE (at home) dress...


To enter, complete the rafflecopter giveaway below.  One winner will be chosen at random and announced on this post.  Giveaway closes on January 4th, at midnight, CST.  Good luck!

Thank you to PinkBlush for collaborating with us on this post!

 **No purchase necessary to enter.  Not eligible to winners of any other PinkBlush giveaways within the last 6 months.  Winner of the giveaway will be contacted via email once comments close and announced on this post soon after.  This giveaway is open only to residents of the United States.  Must be at least 18 years of age or older to participate.**

Congratulations to Latisha Hargrove!!!  You are the winner of the giveaway!!  Be on the lookout for your email from PinkBlush and happy shopping.  Thank you for all who entered. 

Have a Heart This Christmas

Thursday, December 22, 2016
I was gifted a product from the Macy's Heart of Haiti line however all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own.

Christmas.  It really is the most wonderful time of the year for me (and probably for family as well, in that I love it so much and they reap the benefits of my Holiday joy).  I've been given so much this year that I am happy to give back in anyway I can.  That's why I want to tell you about Macy's and the Heart of Haiti product line.  

After the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010, Macy's decided to sell handcrafted products from Haiti in order to help support families of skilled artisans.  This trade-not-aid initiative employs 550 artisans while benefiting an extended 4,500 family members.  Haiti has an estimated 400,000 artisans who rely solely on their handcrafted goods as a source of income.  Click here for a video that tells more about the Macy’s Heart of Haiti line. 

I love this gorgeous handcrafted metalwork snowflake ornament.  It fits perfectly with my haphazard and eclectic ornament collection.  It's nice to have a reminder on the tree that tells us how fortunate we are and that there are ways of giving at Christmas that meaningfully affect others in a positive way.  While this ornament is sold out, you can visit, as part of the Gifts that Give Hope CollectionI think I will use the lovely little soapstone heart (from the first picture above) as a paperweight in my office.  These are the perfect sustainable gifts for any Home Decor lover.

So, Yeah, I Had a Baby

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

This sweet little guy, Briggs Alexander decided to come into the world a full two weeks early.  My original due date was Christmas but I was scheduled for a repeat c-section today, December 21st.  Last Monday, I went into work as usual but kept feeling kind of funny.  I went to the bathroom around 11:00 am and after standing up, noticed a decent gush of fluid.  My water broke.  I quietly went to my desk, wrapped up some things and got out of there like a Ninja.  I did not want anyone to make a big scene and all that went through my mind was the movie "9 Months".  Um, no thanks!  I called my husband from the car, drove myself to the hospital (about 25 miles away) and we met there and waited to have a baby.  

Dax was in school and luckily it was early enough in the day for us to figure out childcare.  We were told we'd be up to bat around 4 ish so my husband left to get Dax and meet my mom at the house so she could watch him.  I wasn't really contracting so waiting wasn't so bad, except it seemed like forever. I was on social media the entire time!  I went back to the OR around 4:30 and my husband still had not made it back.  Oh well, the baby was coming so I was going with the flow.  By the grace of God, when they were ready to get started, the Mr. made it and was allowed in.  At 5:02 pm, we had a strapping little pink son who weighed in at 7 pounds even.

My recovery has been good.  I mean, surgery sucks but I was discharged from the hospital early for good behavior - i.e. I was moving well and healing amazingly.  Once my doc got the ok from the pediatrician that the baby could go home, we were outta there!  Having a repeat c-section when you don't go into active labor was a lot easier than being in labor for 13 hours and then having an emergency section.  Still, surgery - ick!

I must admit, although having him early was a complete surprise, it was welcome.  We were just so thrilled to meet Briggs in person and I was thrilled to not be pregnant anymore!  Also, having a bit of a buffer between his birthday and Christmas, is welcome.  I still can't believe he's here and already over a week old.  He changes everyday.  Big brother Dax has been a champ and is really sweet with "Little Brother".  My husband and I could not be happier.  Falling in love with another little boy was the perfect early Christmas gift.

2016 Holiday Gift Guide for the Girly Girl

Saturday, December 10, 2016
Girly girls.  I'm not necessarily one of them but I love them.  And, I have my femme moments.  I'm not super into pink but we all know that if you are a girly girl, pink is a must.  I wanted to share some ideas for gifts for those lovely Lolitas who appreciate the shinier, rufflier things in life.  I don't think rufflier is a word but I'm trying to make it work!

1 ~ 2 ~ 3 ~ 4 ~ 5 ~ 6 ~ 7 ~ 8 ~ 9 ~ 10 ~ 11

This guide is filled with pinks, metallics, make-up and fun, feminine gift ideas.  All are affordable and would work for sisters, mothers, teens and adults alike.  The "Love Potion Tumbler" (#1), fluffy socks (#4) and the Stitch Fix Gift Card (#5) would make great stocking stuffers.  And to prove I do actually like pink sometimes, I am seriously thinking about putting the Minted Art Print (#7) and the Kendra Scott Color Bar Earrings in Gunmetal and Rose Quartz (#9) on my Christmas Wish List this year.  Make sure to click though the pics below for more gift ideas perfect for the girly girl in your life.

*This post contains affiliate links and my Stitch Fix referral link (when you sign up from my link and get your fix, I get a credit at no cost to you).

2016 Black & White Holiday Gift Guide

Monday, December 5, 2016
I love black and white.

It makes a statement without being too loud. The contrast pops but is still neutral and "safe". It's just so chic.
I wanted to start the first of my 2016 gift guides off with these easy gifts in a striking black and white color palette.  So if you know someone whose motto is "black is the new black", any of the items would be a perfect gift.  Make sure to click through the additional finds below!

Let the Countdown Begin

Thursday, December 1, 2016
Happy December!  Today is December 1st and I have a really important countdown to share with you.

Yes, only 19 more days until Baby Briggs is "scheduled" to enter this world.  I love saying that.  It still makes people unconformable when I tell them I'm having a scheduled c-section.  People are weird and need to get over themselves.  Technically my Due Date is Christmas Day but the 21st is the earliest my Doc will get in there and get this little one out.

I'm hoping recovery this time will be much easier.  Click here to go back and read Dax's Birth story and reminisce with me about how horrible my recovery was last time.  Having an emergency c-section was no bueno and I was convinced I didn't ever want to go through that again.  Oh, how time changes things.  I'm so excited for this little one to get here right before Christmas.  I'm praying every day that he's growing well and that Dax bonds with him.

I still can't wrap my head around having two boys!  Our household is going to be full of burps and stinky feet and cars!  Hey, at least I'll be the center of attention.  That's the way a true Narcissist would look at it, ha!

It's also exciting that Christmas is right around the corner.  We made sure to tell Dax that he has to give away some of his toys in order to get new ones for Christmas.  We don't do much in the way of Santa which I get some flack for, but whatevs.  Santa's not my fave.  Dax knows Santa and we read 'Twas the Night Before Christmas so it's not like he's banned from our home but we just don't perpetuate the Santa talk.  Christmas is about Jesus for us and we want to make sure to instill that in Dax as early as possible, which is now!  Christmas is my favorite holiday but I want Dax to know it's about more than just getting.  It's about giving and not to just your family but to others, even strangers.  
How do you instill the meaning of Christmas with your kiddos?  In what ways do you give to others?  Do you participate in Toys for Tots, Angel Trees or serving at shelters?  I'm always looking for ideas.