Links + Loves

A major makeover

Well if there’s one thing I should know about myself by now, it’s that if I’m not prepared nothing will get done.

Unexpectedly, this past week was quite light on the blogging front. I mean, I got to experience the coolest thing in the world that I wrote about yesterday, but other than that I had no new posts!

My bad! Forgive me! I could give you a million excuses but what it all boils down to is that I wasn’t prepared and didn’t take the time to get stuff ready ahead of time.

I don’t anticipate that to become a regular thing, just for your information.

SO, whats new with you? Are you still full from Thanksgiving? I’m still in post-holiday mode because Justin, David and I didn’t return home until Wednesday of this week. Yes, it was a glorious week up in Illinois and it was hard to leave.

For Christmas, we’ll be heading to my in-laws who live about 1.5 hours away, so this Thanksgiving trip was the last “flying” one for awhile.

I was happily surprised to hear from several of you that you enjoyed the last links and loves post. I’m going to get another one of those going today for you too.


Justin and I in Chicago for our day date!Β 

These are the best leggings I’ve ever put on my body. They are not maternity, but they work with a pregnant belly just fine. They are thick, but not “hot”, and hold their shape nicely. I hate thin, worthless leggings, so if you do too I think you’ll really like these!

Giordanos > LouMalnati’s. Hands down without a single question. We went to Lou Malnati’s for my sisters’ birthday dinner and the whole time I was wishing I was over at Giordanos stuffing my face with a deep dish cheese pizza. I realize this view may alienate some readers, but the world had to know. I had to take a stand for the sake of pizza.

Justin and I ate at Banerda, downtown Chicago, on our day date the other day and while it was a cool atmosphere and great service, the food left much to be desired. My family, however, loves that place so maybe this is just the pregnancy talking.

David has become the pickiest eater in history. Feeding him is a real treat chore. That is an undertaking that I didn’t think was going to be quite as challenging as it’s turning out to be. I’m sort of resolving that he may simply have cheese crumbles for every meal. He does have Wisconsin in his blood line so I can’t really blame the child, can I?

This is basically all I carry these days.

I’m hugely pregnant. Like, I look like I did when I was 9 months pregnant with David. What will the next two months hold? Hopefully not doubling in size. I have, however, finally gotten pregnant enough where strangers are commenting on it. I’m usually out and about with David so the common question is “oh how far apart will they be?” with a gesture to my enormous belly. I answer, “about 14 months!” and I’m usually met with a smile and a story of how either they had kids that close, or had a sibling that close.

I have to say that I’ve been pleasantly surprised with how kind strangers are being about it. I thought I would get more, “what kind of moron are you” types of looks but everyone has been quite nice! Now, I’ve been told my tired face and my angry face look identical, so perhaps when I’m talking around tired at 9 months people are going to think I’m angry and then think that I’m crazy for getting myself into this situation. But the silver lining? I’ll probably never see the stranger who takes pity on me again so there is that.

I bought a Nest votive candle at Nordstrom the other day because I had to see what the big deal was about. I imagined tiny angels would emerge, sprinkling delicious scent all over my home given when I spent on it, but I’m sad to report it just a normal candle. Does it smell good? Sure. Yes, it does. Will I ever buy a full-size Nest candle? Not as long as Bath and Body Works is still in business. Bring on the 3-wick candles!

Remember my quest for the best lip balm? I received over 300 comments on thatΒ post. Holy. Cow. Well I bite the bullet, and bought the Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask in Champagne. IT IS THE HOLY GRAIL LIP BALM. Peace out Nuxe.

My handmade gift series will pick back up next week!


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Tina says · 12.05.14

I have only visited Chicago once, and while I was there I fell in LOVE with Giordanos!

Nichole says · 12.05.14

i can’t imagine spending money on any candles besides bath & body works! The smell, the packaging, plus they almost always have them in some sort of sale. I’d heard of the best ones too and was kinda curious. Glad to know I can stay faithful to my three wicks.

Leigh Ann says · 12.05.14

Don’t stress the picky eating, mama! They all have their moments. My best advice is to offer something he likes with each meal along with a few things he’ll probably ignore. That way you avoid the food battles (“she gave me cheese crumbles, yum!), but you give him plenty of opportunities to try something else should the urge hit him πŸ™‚ One day he *will* pick up that green bean, I promise! I still have moments when I’m jealous of any mom who says their baby eats everything. Ugh.

Denise says · 12.05.14

I’ve been a picky eater all my life. Nothing wrong with it! =) He just knows what he wants!

Angela Richardson says · 12.05.14

What is it with the picky eating boys!? I’m pulling my hair out with mine too. What child won’t eat meat? Mine apparently. Seriously what is wrong with chicken? And if he thinks he doesn’t like the texture of something I can’t get it past his lips. But the other night he ate sauteed peppers like candy, so weird. I wish I had the magic cure, but I guess we’re in the same boat. Well at least they are getting their dairy allowance right?

Laurie says · 12.05.14

Love Justin ‘ s beard. My hubby has one also.

Katie says · 12.05.14

Yes!! Giordano’s is THE best. I’ve only been to Chicago three times, but it definitely beats the competition. My sister and I are 14 months apart and we’re best friends to this day, so it’s a perfect amount of space between them. My daughters are 2 1/2 years apart and I think that’s too much! :). Also, I thought my daughter would only eat Baby Mum-Mums for rest of her life when she was about a year old, but luckily that phase passes. Now she’s almost three and will at least try must things. You’re doing great!

Aleassa says · 12.05.14

I was surprised too, when pregnant with my 4th who was 18 months apart from my 3rd, at how nice and excited everyone was for us. I did get a lot of “you do know how that happens right” comments, usually from random older men in the grocery store.

Also, my 4th is a picky little stinker at mealtimes and has been since he was 5 few months old. He’s almost 2 now and I still can’t predict whether he will eat a banana or any other food 2 days in a row. I think a lot of it has to do with when he’s cutting teeth, certain textures irritate his gums. Last night we had tostadas, and he threw everything on the floor except the guacamole, which he devoured. He’s never had guac before. So weird.

I think c-sections have something to do with our bellies get bigger faster with each subsequent pregnancy. I don’t know, just my theory. Anyway, you and Baby#2 look great!
God bless!

Rebecca says · 12.05.14

I just bought some maternity leggings from Old Navy! Blast…oh well. They had a great Black Friday sale on their website. If those don’t go over so well, of to The Loft I go. πŸ™‚

Brooke says · 12.05.14

He JCrew link is just taking me to the main page. I’m looking for a new bag/purse so I would love to know what you like.

Kate says · 12.05.14

strange, I clicked it and it brought me to the wallet. Anyway, it’s a stripe “magic” wallet from jcrew πŸ™‚

Stephanie says · 12.05.14

It’s still taking me to the main page as well.

Lisa says · 12.05.14

Works for me! The tab says stripe magic wallet, the page just won’t open. Probably a slow wifi connection…

Anyway Kate, I love your blog! My sister and I have been huge fans for a couple years now. And my husband and I just had our first child, a son, back in April, so I enjoy reading your motherhood experiences as well.

Take care,
Cheers! πŸ™‚

Olga says · 12.05.14

Hi, Kate. I do not comment usually, but I love your blog and I would like to encourage you a bit about children close in age. In my experience, even though it’s going to be hard for a year or so, later it will be easier for you. The kids close in age have same interests and play the same games, you can read them same books, and they are going to have a playmate available all the time. They will be best friends (at least for the first 10 years or so:)) I wish you all the best!

Elizabeth says · 12.05.14

Love these posts! Also I am totally going to try the agave lip mask now…

Kirsti says · 12.05.14

I was a picky eater growing up and still am! My husband always tries to get me to try new foods, I just know what I like πŸ™‚ hopefully you are able to find some other foods, besides cheese crumbles that he likes on a regular basis! My best friend and her son were just visiting, he loves ketchup and pickles, I told her atleast he’s eating veggies πŸ™‚

3 wick candles are amazing! I just stocked up for fall and winter not too long ago! (Always google bath and body works promo codes before purchasing, you can combine them with 2 for $22 usually! I just paid $8.25 a candle recently) vanilla chai has become my go to favorite for fall and winter! (Leaves for fall and winter for winter πŸ™‚ )

Catie J Buck says · 12.05.14

I love visiting CHICAGO! One of my many favorite things to do there is visiting the museums, Michigan Ave, the architecture, etc,… AH love it!

Jen says · 12.05.14

I too am hugely pregnant due with number 2 in February. I’m hoping my clothes will last because I don’t want to buy more!

Sherry says · 12.05.14

Have you ever been to RPM in Chicago? It’s Giuliana and Bill Rancic’s restaurant and I’ve seen rave reviews. Love their show and would love to catch a glimpse of them in there one day!

Ariadna says · 12.05.14

I love Giordano’s!!! Nothing can beat it!! And I commend you for having kids so close in age, my brothers (twins) and I are 4 years apart, not really how my parents planned it but that’s how it worked out. We have always been close, it wasn’t until I moved out that we stopped being that close. I don’t think it matters how close or far apart they are in age, what matters is that you love them and they love each other which is pretty much a given because you are great parents. Who cares what other people think!! But anyway, that’s just my two cents, thanks for sharing your thoughts and findings with us!! I’m currently going through your videos on youtube trying to find that perfect hairstyle for a holiday party! πŸ™‚

Jenelle says · 12.05.14

Just wanted to say that I clicked on the link for the leggings and they are on sale for $14.70 each! I ought two. πŸ™‚

Stephanie says · 12.08.14

You got a good deal. I went on just now and they are back to $25 each! Bummer! Still ordering a pair though!

erin says · 12.05.14

Native Chicaogan here from the Western burbs. I LOVE Lou Malnatis’ but I also love Giordonio’s. LOL!! I grew up by a Lou’s and Giodano’s was no were close. I just love the crust at Lou’s. :o)

Tara says · 12.05.14

Having the opposite problem, in that my oldest 3 kids were nicely spaced (2-3 years apart), but then I had a surprise baby when my 3rd was 8, it’s much more difficult to have a baby when you’ve left the baby stage behind. It’s probably much better to just take all the mayhem at once.

Sarah says · 12.05.14

Hi Kate! Just wanted to say that i really enjoyed reading this post; i really love it when you post about random things. πŸ™‚ and i also cannot believe that you’ll be on TV on that show; havent watched it yet, but that is so cool! πŸ˜€ And i’m sure you look fine, God would say the same. πŸ™‚ have a great weekend! πŸ˜‰

Tyana says · 12.05.14

you guys are literally the cutest couple

check out todays blogmas

Audrey Muir says · 12.05.14

just love reading your blog and posts. Btw, I am a Brit, living in Prague who is currently in Dubai – talk about how international you are! X

Colleen says · 12.05.14

As a Chicago girl, born and raised, I have to disagree. Lou’s is my pizza of choice!! But I’ll forgive you for loving Giordano’s. πŸ™‚ I’m also hugely pregnant – people have asked if I’m having twins (so rude!). Nope. I just happen to be showing earlier/bigger with my second pregnancy and carrying all out front. I’m finally embracing the large bump.

Kate says · 12.05.14

My sister would agree with you on Lous πŸ™‚ All the best with your pregnancy!

Colleen says · 12.05.14

Thank you! Best wishes to you too! I think we’re due around the same time (my due date is Feb 10).

Evelyn says · 12.05.14

Love this post, like an informal girl chat! And that’s a lovelly picture of you too!


Evelyn says · 12.05.14


Amber says · 12.05.14

I am due with my second in Jan. and I have always heard that every pregnancy will show faster and be bigger than the last. totally true. Don’t stress about it your body just knows what it needs to do so it’s doing in earlier.

Emily says · 12.05.14

I’m totally a Giordanos girl myself!

meagan says · 12.05.14

I only buy Bath and Body Works 3 wicks! Especially when there is a $10 off coupon involved and the candles are 2 for $22.

Jenny says · 12.05.14

My sister lived in Chicago the past 4 years and I loved visiting her there because she would bring me to all these amazing restaurants around the city that I would have never found as a tourist. I didn’t do a whole lot of shopping out of all my visits, but a whole heck of a lot of eating! Chicago has a great food scene! I love that city. She just moved to NYC so I’m excited to visit her there πŸ™‚

Those leggings sound really great. I recently purchased a pair that were fleece lined, and while they fit my legs they don’t fit properly on my waist and won’t stretch hardly at all, so they constantly fall down and then it causes me to waddle like I’m wearing a full diaper- not cute! I’m in need of a good pair like this! Xx

Jenny // Mish Mosh Makeup

Amy says · 12.05.14

Love these posts! I have 3 kiddos and my oldest has been super picky since he turned 1. I used to beat myself up about it and thought it was my fault. He’s 8 now and it took me years to realize maybe some kids are just born with more sensitive pallets and that’s ok. It actually suits his more sensitive and sweet nature πŸ™‚ So I try not to stress about it as much.

Also, I’ve been wanting some new leggings! I’m excited to try those out πŸ™‚

michelle says · 12.05.14

Awesome lip balm that IMO is better than bite and less expensive! (Got it from birchbox)

Mandy says · 12.05.14

I have 4 kids….3 boys and the youngest is a girl. My fourth boy has survived on cheese and apples for most of his life. He is now 6! He also loves grapes and cashews. And pizza. That is basically it. I cannot bribe him or trick him into eating anything else. It can be very frustrating!

valerie says · 12.05.14

Love Bandera! I feel super touristy when I go there, but oh well. They have THE best veggie burger, and I’m not vegetarian. I get it every time. Besides if you’re going to be downtown, you may as well take in a decent view.

Stacy says · 12.06.14

Giordano’s is the best pizza ever! No contest! Bandera is usually fab, maybe just an off night. Have you tried The Bongo Room? One of the best breakfast places in Chicago!

Allison says · 12.06.14

Hey Kate,

I love your blog posts and find so much joy in learning hair and beauty tips from you! Have you ever tried Swan Creek Soy candles? Their scents are amazing, and they can burn for an incredible amount of hours. They are a year-round favorite in our home!

Sending Christmas blessings from West Michigan πŸ™‚

Miriam says · 12.06.14

7 months pregnant and it feels like 9 months? That doesn’t sound like any fun πŸ˜‰
I didn’t do anything @ thanksgiving because we don’t celebrate that in The Netherlands.

Sasha says · 12.06.14

Yay! Love the handmade gifts series! I’m attempting the lotion bars tonight!

Kristin S says · 12.06.14

Just got my annual Sephora coupon and I’m getting that dang lip balm tomorrow! What a treat.

Kate says · 12.07.14

I hope you love it!

Maggie says · 12.14.14

Ok, yes to the lip balm… I will try it… but what lip color are you wearing here? You and I are almost the exact same coloring so I typically copy whatever looks great on you and it works out. πŸ™‚

Ramona says · 12.07.14

My two children are 13 months apart. Wouldn’t have had it any other way. Everyone has their own opinion. Just smile and say, “I am blessed!”

Tiffany says · 12.07.14

I picked up a Nest candle at a store here in Qatar tonight and it roughly came out to $78! For a candle! It smelled great and came in a beautiful box, but I know I am just going to burn through it in less than a month and then I am left with a box and empty candle holder. This was a full sized version and the candler holder was textured, but still!

Claudia says · 12.07.14

Y’all realize they can ship those pizzas right? What leggins I must have missed something.

Katie says · 12.07.14

Thanks Kate….I ran out and bought mp new leggings and lip balm.

Jen says · 12.08.14


Your scarf is absolutely gorgeous. Can you share with us where you found it?

Maren says · 12.08.14

My children are 13 YEARS apart in age and I thought I’d get a lot of “What the hell were you thinking?”….but I didn’t. I got a lot of stories of siblings or aunts/uncles who are years apart in age.

Sissi says · 12.08.14

What a gorgeous picture of you two! I am happy you had a great Getaway. I have yet to see Chicago but like to do it rather in summer or spring time lol!

Jessica says · 12.08.14

I CANNOT BELIEVE that you would dare say Giordanos is better than Lou Malnatis. I will NEVER read your blog again!!

j/k of course πŸ™‚

I am a LM fan vs Giordanos, but that might just be because they have a gluten free pizza. I just couldn’t resist commenting since you said your choice “may alienate some readers.” πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

lauren alysse says · 12.11.14

My brother and I are 15 months apart! I didn’t realize that my Mom was pregnant so soon after she had me until you starting posting about pregnancy and David was still so young! I definitely have more appreciation for my mom now — and clearly we all did just fine πŸ™‚

milo says · 01.05.15

Found your blog by googling “capsule wardrobe blog”, stayed because it was awesome, got even more excited that you’re in the triangle (I’m in Durham!), and love the variety of interesting posts!

I bought and LOVE the leggings – I have a couple pairs I’ve paid a lot more for, but these ones are by far the best! Thanks for passing that recommendation on!

Jual obat Sipilis says · 01.10.15

appreciation for all mom