Affordable clothes that make you feel great during pregnancy

Monday, October 17, 2016

I am not sponsored or affiliated with  any of these companies(except amazon) I just really like their clothes;)

Not long into my pregnancies my body starts to expand. My clothing gets tight and hardly anything fits me any more. It's okay though, because there is a new little life growing inside me and it's the best reason of all to be adding on those extra pounds!

Having clothes that fit during pregnancy can make all the difference in the world in making you feel great and beautiful!

I always look forward to the stage when I have an obvious bump instead of what looks like a big squishy, bloated stomach. Out come the elastic bands and stretchy clothes! I have saved quite a few maternity clothes over the years that I have come to love...just in case;)

This time around as I was starting to need some new clothing I searched high and low for my stash, but they were nowhere to be found. I thought I had put them up in our garage attic and had my husband go look for them but he couldn't find them. I really wanted to go up and look for them(because I know they are there) but I don't want to kill myself.

I really didn't want to buy a bunch of new clothes but I knew I couldn't survive this pregnancy just in big tees and stretchy pants.(Well at least if I was ever going to go out of the house)

Thankfully I was able to find some affordable deals on maternity and non maternity clothes, that will fit me even after I have the baby. Granted I might not want to wear them after I get back to my pre pregnancy weight, but at least I have the option. And it's always nice to have comfy clothes postpartum.

Some maternity clothes make you feel bigger than you are, and then there are some that make you just love having that big bump!

I have tried to be resourceful and use what dresses I have had in my closet and find non maternity clothes that will fit but have less of a price tag then maternity. I have found a few things at garage sales and thrift stores but I honestly love the clothes that I have bought brand new. I think it's worth it to spend a little more sometimes for quality clothes that will last.

Here are some of my finds that I hope will inspire you to embrace your growing body and love being pregnant and stylish!

                                                             Space dye tank $24.99

                                                             Utility Dress $27.99
The great thing about Target is that everything eventually goes on sale. I was lucky to go when all of these were on sale!
Old Navy
                                            Low Panel Skinny Jeans $39.94
Every pregnant woman needs a good pair of comfortable jeans! I love these ones from Old Navy and they were on sale when I bought them!

                                                               Tee Dress $18.00
                              This is not maternity. But I got a large and it is so comfy!

                                            Relaxed Curved Hem Scoop Neck tank $7.99
          I got 3 of these shirts in different colors, size large. I wear them almost every day! They are not maternity but stretch!

These are not maternity but have an elastic waist. I got these in M and they fit perfect!
Every pregnant woman's best friend! 
Old Navy has a great return policy and makes it easy to return any items that don't fit online or in their store just in case.
Shop PinkBlush (online store)
I love this online maternity store I found! So many cute dresses. They are always having sales so make sure and check out their clearance. If you see something you like be sure to buy it because they sell out fast!
Love Winnie James(Online store)
I recently found this online store and love it! 
I recently bought this non maternity dress and love it! So comfy and pretty! I will definitely be wearing it for a long time! Again it's not maternity so make sure to get the large!
This is a little more pricey then I would normally spend but so cute!


Amazon is one of my favorite online resources! I love that I get free 2 day shipping! They have a great selection of maternity clothing! 

I also just bought these maternity underwear and bras if you are looking. I tried as long as I could to hold off but my double wide appendages were not having it;) 

It's always nice to be able to try on clothes before you buy them but even when I shop in stores I hate to try on clothes. If you know your size, online shopping is the way to go, especially if you are already a busy mom. Fast, easy and affordable is what I am all about! And most of these stores offer free shipping with a purchase of $50 or more.

As you can see I really like wearing dresses during pregnancy. Since it's so hot here in Florida I need clothes that are breathable and cool...and comfy! I understand that most everyone else is getting out there winter clothes but I think many of these clothes can be made warmer by leggings and jackets. 

You are going to be pregnant for 9 months; you deserve to feel comfortable and beautiful during that time. And depending on how often you get pregnant, it's an investment worth making! 

Our New Addition

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Did I get you there with that post title?

Were you expecting to see more bump pics?

This kind of addition is quite a bit different;)

If you have followed me long enough you know that we live in a 2 bedroom house with our 5 children.  It is  774 sq. ft., has one bathroom and a very tiny kitchen.

God has taught me so much about being content and making the most with what we have, though I haven't always liked it.

We bought our house at the peak of the market...and then it crashed and we have really had no way out, unless we wanted to go into debt.

Our cute little house was everything I had dreamed of when we bought it: wood floors, big backyard, close to family and church, big oak trees.

At the time we bought it, we only had Israel and I was pregnant with Judah.  It was just the right size for our little family.

Little did we know how our family would grow over the coming years...

Though we never imagined that we would be living here with 5 children(almost 6!) we have been so blessed and thankful for all the joy and love that we have experienced in this little home. Love really does grow best in little houses.

We have prayed for a long time for God to provide a way for us to either add on or get a new place. Though of course we would have liked it to have happened a lot sooner, God has deemed it best to make us wait. God's timing is always perfect though and we are so excited to finally be adding on!

I haven't always been the most patient person. I really don't like waiting, but God obviously is doing a work in me. Even though I don't always understand I am thankful for it and I trust him.

With a new baby due in December I am quite anxious for our addition to be finished. I am praying that by some miracle that it will be done in time but if not I know we will survive. At least the baby won't care.

We are going to be adding 14ft on to the back of the house. (About 400 sq.ft.)It will include a new, bigger kitchen, tearing down the wall between our living room and kitchen now to make an open dining area, a new bedroom and a bathroom! Plus a deck off the back with french doors opening out from our kitchen and bedroom!! To most standards it will still be a modest size house but for us it will be amazing!!!

My husband, a ministry of our church and other hired help will be doing most of the work. I am so thankful that I have such a handy husband(who has done construction work before) and some amazing servants in our church to take on this project.

I am really excited that the kids get to be apart of this. I am hoping they will learn a lot about hard work as well as some valuable life skills.

So far the footers and stem wall have been finished and our first inspection passed. Already I have learned that building a house is no joke and requires a lot of patience. We were supposed to have started in July, but due to waiting on our plans, city permits and other things it is just now getting started. I was starting to think it would never happen!

I know that there is bound to be plenty of more setbacks and changes so I am asking God for grace to help me roll with the punches and just be thankful that we are doing this at all!

I am preparing myself for a lot of dust, dirt and mess. Thankfully I have not gotten into my nesting mode or I would probably be driving myself and everyone else crazy!!

I wish it was like a home renovation show where you get to see what happens in fast motion but real life is not like that and I just pray that God will help me to stay faithful with what he has given us to do right now, one day at a time.

I can't wait to show you our progress and walk you through our renovation! So now not only do you have to put up with our newest baby addition updates but our home addition updates also;) Be sure to check out my instagram and instagram stories for behind the scenes progress!

Have you done a home renovation or addition?

What was your experience?

Any advice?

Linking up here!

30 week bump update

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

How is it possible that I am 30 weeks already???

I know I have said it before but this pregnancy is flying by! Usually it seems to drag on f o r e v e r !!

Whatever the reason I am thankful. I have been extremely blessed to have had such a great pregnancy so far.
It still doesn't seem quite real. I have now come to feel like I have always been pregnant and it's hard to remember not being pregnant. Even though this sweet little girl is kicking up a storm and constantly on the move it still just blows my mind that there is actually a little person in there! Every time I give birth it is so amazing because I am always in awe when that soft wrinkled little part of me and my husband comes out. It is just such a miracle!

It's getting harder and harder for me to bend down and I am definitely in waddle mode. The heat has really been killing me and I am dreaming of cooler weather. I love Florida but I have been getting a little jealous of everyone else's posts of fall colors, sweaters, hats, apple picking,  soups and pumpkin spice lattes.

Come on Florida, all I am asking is for at least 70 degree weather!! (It's still been in the 90's!!!)

I have noticed that I am getting a lot more dizzy lately and can not stand for very long in one spot or I feel like I am going to pass out. (Probably because of the heat!)

At the end of my pregnancies I always put my back out and get sciatic pain. It's a lower back pain that goes down to my butt and leg. When I stand up I immediately feel a sharp pain coursing through me. Not fun! It happened this week and I was pretty much limping everywhere.Thankfully it wore off but I know it will be back as I try to do things that my growing body just will not allow.

My brain has really been on the fritz also. I have totally been getting dates mixed up. Thank goodness for my calender on my phone to remind me. I was out for a walk this week thinking I had all the time in the world and then got an alert that my glucose screening was in half an hour and I had a prenatal appointment scheduled at the same time! I knew that I had them this week but totally got my days and times mixed up!

I have always passed my glucose screenings and I am praying it will be the same this time!!

I have really been hoping the nesting mode would kick in but I remembered it usually doesn't until I am like 38 weeks pregnant! So even though I don't feel that extra kick of adrenaline to get things done I am trying to force myself so I am not waiting till the last minute.

I have been forcing myself ( the kids) to take a bump picture every week( believe it or not I don't like being in front of the camera) and this week Luke wanted to get in and have a picture with his baby too;P He cracks me up!

Before you know it my due date will be here and all you will see is sweet newborn pics, but for now I am going to treasure this sweet time with this little one safe and snug inside of me!

I have some exciting things that I can't wait to share with you but they will have to wait for another post so stay tuned!

In case you missed it check out my post at My Joy Filled Life on how I survive homeschooling during pregnancy!!

Did you ever get sciatic pain in your pregnancies?

Have you always passed your glucose screening?

When do you start to get into nesting mode?

Linking up here!

How to survive homeschooling during pregnancy

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Homeschooling can already be challenging on it's own, add in pregnancy to the mix and it takes homeschooling to a whole new level.

Although it can seem daunting growing a life inside of you and teaching your children, it is possible!

I am now in the last leg of my 6th pregnancy and homeschooling a 1st grader, 4th grader and 6th grader and have a 4 year old and a 2 year old.

A lot of things change around here during my pregnancies. Thankfully the kids are pretty good at adjusting and I am learning to give myself  a lot of grace.

Here are some ways that I have learned to not only survive homeschooling and caring for my family while pregnant, but to embrace and enjoy it as well:

Hop on over to My Joy Filled Life to read the rest of the post!!!

Linking up here!

How to make a gallery image page on Blogger

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

I jumped into blogging quite blindly.

I didn't prepare or read anything about blogging. I know...I know, what was I thinking?

I didn't know how much technical things you need to know to run a blog efficiently.

I didn't realize the hours that go on behind the scenes to making your blog look nice and easy for your readers to get around.

One baby step at a time, I learned how to make it look like how I  had envisioned in my mind.

I focused on sharing my heart and staying true to my vision.

I messed up a lot and still do. There is still so many things that I would like to tweak and change about my blog. But I want to keep my priorities in order, so I do what I can when I can. In other words, instead of it taking me months to get my blog how I want it, it has taken me years. Don't worry it doesn't have to be the same for you. I just have different priorities.

Everything on my blog I have figured out how to do myself or through tutorials. It has been a lot of trial and error, but I am pretty proud of what I have been able to accomplish for not being a computer nerd.

 I would much rather spend my time on writing encouraging posts, sharing diy's and recipes and posting lots of pretty pictures, but there is just so much more to blogging then doing the fun stuff.

 I know that making my blog aesthetically pleasing will pay in the long run, and all the things that seemed hard at first will be a piece of cake once I master them.

One thing that I have wanted to do for a long time is to make my posts easily accessible. The way I wanted to do that was to have a gallery on each of my pages. That way you could go to the page of your choice see the pictures of the post, click on them and be transferred to that post.

Not only is this a great way to showcase older posts but it's like a library for your blog. Having it all in pictures makes it more alluring to click on the picture and find the topic you want to read about. I am very visual so I if I see a pretty picture I know I will be more drawn to click on it.

I searched high and low for a tutorial or template to be able to do this easily. Unfortunately I didn't find much that was helpful. I am sure there is some plug in somewhere to make this easier but I could not find one for blogger. I know that many serious bloggers have moved on to wordpress, which seems to have many more plugins and benefits, but I am just not there yet. I might one day when I get up enough gumption;)

The only tutorial I found that helped me a great deal was this tutorial from Laura's Crafty Life. It will give you the html code that you can easily add to your page. But I still was missing a lot of pieces to the puzzle to make all the photos the same size and how to add them. Remember, to someone who knows nothing about html or coding this was all foreign to me. I needed step by step directions on how to do everything.

If you have been looking to make your pages into a beautiful gallery and know nothing of how to make this happen, this post is for you.

1. Upload your photos to photobucket
To upload your pictures onto your page you first need to upload them to a source that you can get a link image for them. Photobucket is a free resource where you can store, edit and transfer your photos easily. All you have to do is register for your free account.

2.Crop your pictures into a square. 
Once you upload your photos to photobucket you then need to crop them. Simply click on your photo and a edit image will pop up then go to the crop button. Different sizes will come up. You want to click on the square button. Your picture will turn into a square shape. You might need to center it a little bit. When you are done save your photo.

3. Copy the image link 
Now go to your library/bucket and click on the picture you want and then to the right of the picture you will see some links with the title "Share this Photo" above them. You want to click on the direct link. It will immediately copy your photo link. Make sure you only do this when you are ready to paste it into your page.

4. Add html code to your page
Remember that tutorial from Laura's crafty life I mentioned? Now is when you want to go their and copy it. If you want your pictures 4 across copy the whole thing. If you want them 3 across copy it up to the third line where is says"Name you want to be displayed" and then it will have this right after it </a></td> 
Go to your page on blogger. Open it up in html and add in the code.

5. Add in the Url of your post and image
In the coding where it says-  
Add in the url of the post you want to add. Make sure you delete the portion between the parenthesis. Leave the parenthesis and paste in your url. Now do the same where it says-http://yourimageurl.jpg
with the link from photobucket. You have the choice to add in a title of your post. I opted out as it messed up the clean look I was going for, and most of my pictures had the title already on them. If you want to add in the title simply replace example with your title. If not erase it.

6. Adjust image size
If you want your pictures 3 across then you will want to change the 25% to 33%. Then change the page setting to Compose. All your pictures will be huge. Click on them and change them by clicking the small button. They will all look uniform now. Continue to add in the html code and go back through all the steps as you need to add in new posts to your gallery.

It took me a while to finally feel comfortable doing all this. Hopefully this took all the guess work out for you, if you are not tech savvy like me. I love when I am given instructions step by step, assuming that I know nothing of this world of numbers and letters called coding; which I pretty much don't.

All of this can be quite time consuming so I try to add in my photos and pictures a few at a time as I publish them. Once you get the hang of it it will be easier and easier.

I hope this was helpful to you and gave you the tools you need if you have been also dreaming of beautiful gallery page for all your posts!

Let me know if you have any questions or if anything needs to be made clearer!

There are still so many things I want to change about my blog to make it better but for now I'll keep taking one step at a time to get it to where I want it to be. Even though the process can at times be frustrating, it's so rewarding to look back and see how far you have come!

Linking up here!

Field trip to the Florida Aquarium

Saturday, September 17, 2016

I think I love field trips as much as the kids! At least once a week we try to get out whether it's to the beach, park, zoo or museum. It is not only a great learning experience but much needed break from our busy school week. I feel like we get so much more done when we have an outing to look forward to!

All year long my kids ask me when we are going to go to the Aquarium. With a large family like ours it can get really pricey to take everyone to the Aquarium or other places. Our preferred amount to pay is usually free. That means that we have to wait for certain times of the year when they are special deals.

Every year we usually invest in our local Zoo pass for the family which is pretty affordable. With it we get access to the Aquarium and other museums in September. As soon as September came you can be sure that we high tailed it over to the Aquarium. We have been to the Aquarium numerous times but it never ceases to thrill the kids. Anything to do with ocean life and animals is a sure winner in the Harris household.

My kids are not only obsessed with fish and wildlife but are pretty much experts on the subject. They know way more than I do and most other people do for that matter. I am certain that at least one of them will have a career involving something to do with fish or animals.

One of the greatest perks of homeschooling is that we get to go places on the off days. We went to the Aquarium the day after labor day and nobody was there. We had the whole place to ourselves! It also didn't hurt that our AC had to be worked on that day and we needed to get out of the house.

We left early stopping for doughnuts and to pick up Grandma of course. We packed peanut butter and jelly and I had the kids dress in their bathing suits to play in the water park there.

I loved seeing the kids Oooo and Ahhhh over all the beautiful sea life. I was so proud when we attended a little snake presentation and they knew most the answers to the questions. I love seeing their curiosity about a fish they haven't heard of and  also recognizing  and naming so many of the sea and land animals. I love that they are always learning and so inquisitive all on their own.

As you can see we had a great time and I am sure will be back before the month is over! When we got home the boys decided to draw an ocean web food chain all on their own. I have to say I was pretty amazed at how accurate and thorough they were! And of course Israel was very inspired by the sharks and sea turtle!

One of my favorite things about homeschooling is that we can really delve into areas of study that my kids are interested in. Not only are they learning from books but they are learning as they explore and investigate wherever we are.

We are so blessed to live in an area that accommodates so much of the interests of my children, particularly animals and sea life. :)

If you live in the area have you been to the Florida Aquarium?

What's your favorite thing about homeschooling?

Where do your children love to go on a field trip?

Linking up here!

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