10 Must have toiletries for travel

I love traveling, as you can to tell by my IG and Insta stories. This year I have learned so much about myself and what my own needs are, not just wants, because my goal has been to declutter and take less stuff with me (in life and) as I travel. Going to places with a baby is fun, but also takes so much more space in your luggage so here are my absolute must haves when traveling.

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I do not compromise on skincare. When traveling through the dry air of the airport and the cool/hot/or just all together unstable conditions of the airplane air, it all takes a toll on your skin. Add the stress of packing and taking care of a little one at the same time – is calling for dry patches, weird skin issues and pimples. Anyone experience this before?

We just came home from being away for 10 days, car driving, airports, multiple countries and multiple flights. My skin has remained clear, clean and super soft just like I like it! So I am sharing what has worked for me!

1.Hand Sanitizer: I brought 4-5 with me on the trip to keep in every room and every purse! I used it on the baby, with diaper changes and especially throughout the airport on all of us!

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 Babyganics hand sanitizer in this small size is super key!  

2. Cleansing brush: this one is called Mary Kay skinvigorate cleansing brush, its amazing on the price and compatibility! No cords or extra space needed – battery operated and makes an incredible difference when washing face after a long flight! I personally love this purple color because its so fun, usually it comes in white, this was a limited edition color, and the best part – it’s only $50!

3. Jergens Natural Glow tinted body moisturizer. I am as pale as it comes, and for vacation I like to have a little glow. I love this body moisturizer because it gives a great color right away, within an hour or two of applying it – which makes it super convenient when you forget to put it on “on time” and want some color on your legs before you head out the door. (which has happened to me lots of times before).

Tip: for a clean look and seamless tan – shave, then apply moisturizer all over, then apply the fake tan lotion. Especially around the elbows and knees – it will take on the tint better and will look more even once it dries.

4. Men: My husbands 1 must have when traveling is the Mary Kay Moisturizer for men. It has spf and all the anti aging my man needs. Once he forgot to bring it with him on vacation and didn’t want to use my moisturizer, so he made me contact a local beauty consultant and have her drop one off for us at the hotel!

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5. My absolute favorite cleanser I’ve ever triedMary Kay Volufirm Foaming cleanser   The real reason I love this cleanser is because of how it foams when I use my cleansing brush with it! Also, it leaves my skin feeling so smooth and this tube is so big it lasts me a really long time, about 5-6 months!

6. Eye Makeup remover! In the photo I have the full size bottle in the back, because what I take with me is the mini, it’s just perfect size for my travels. (If you need the mini eye makeup remover for traveling and smart packing, ask me! I will often have a promotion where you can’t the mini for free when you buy 2 products)

I can’t say enough about this product, honestly the best makeup remover I’ve ever used!

7. Charcoal Mask – this is a brand new product for this company and I am SO in love! I think I have a new tradition now! As I am packing up to leave I put the mask on (because I am packing it will stay on longer then it needs to, but I am ok with that!) that way my skin is super fresh and clean to go! I even had my husband do it with me! So far this mask has been with me to New York, Dublin and Paris!

On a separate note – I saw a huge difference in my husband’s pores and blackheads, I keep my skin care regiment tight, so I saw a difference but not as big as on his face!

8. Night Solution and Volufirm Lifting Serum: I couldn’t decide which one to bring so I took both with me! These two products are my absolute must have for a night routine! After I wash my face I apply the lifting serum and then the night solution serum. The vitamins and the boost is incredible! I see such a huge difference if I stop using it just for a day or two. A lot of women comment on my porcelain type skin, and honestly these two are the reason for it! I swear!

The lifting serum is the most expensive skin care item I am using right now but I think it is the one that makes the biggest difference in the elasticity of my skin and the youthfulness!

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9. Eye Cream: I LOVE this eye cream because of the cool metal tip – it calms the skin down and allows the puffiness to go down and to me that’s exactly what my eyes need after an over night flight with lack of sleep, jet leg and taking care of a baby tired.

10. Revealing Radiance Facial Peal: let’s talk about taking some skin layers off and doing a serious detox on your skin! I love this one as soon as we get settled into our apartment or hotel room. Nothing freshens up my skin better! I like to do this one at night just in case I have some redness and I leave it on my skin for about 30 minutes (which is more then you need to do) while enjoying a glass of wine and relaxing because that’s what vacation is about!

extra: my favorite deodorant right now is this one from Dove, I like how its easy to use and doesn’t leave white marks on clothes. I give it a thumbs up! Pictured in the above photo.

Another item I bring but not all the time is the Lip mask – allowing my dry lips to recover!

Here is the list of all of them again, click on the image for more details and a link is underneath for each product.

 

Mind Battlefield

The last couple of weeks I feel like I’ve been attacked and hit with so many grenades of the insecurity kind that I feel compelled to share with you ladies some thoughts on the subject.

Why are we, why am I, so negative and shameful towards my body?

All our body ever does is carry us through life, give us babies, feed the babies, give comfort hugs to those near us, waves hello, gives goodbye kisses, and welcomes home our loves ones. It protects, strengthens, comforts and loves on everyone else, so why don’t we do the same and protect our body by treating it properly and dressing it with respect and grace it deserves. Why not take time to strengthen our body at the gym, by going for a walk, eat proper fueling nutrition to give it power to keep going. Take time to comfort the body to let it heal, like after giving birth for example, and let the body rest on a regular basis (this one is hard for me, I tend to go and go until I’m really hurting) and take a day out of the week for a sabbath – no hard work physically or mentally.

After all the love our body gives to the husband, kiddos, hugs our friends, and pet the fur babies, I strongly believe we need to find time to actively love our body back. For me it means mani/pedi on a regular basis, sometimes a massage or a bubble bath with some alone time. The biggest fight in actively loving yourself, in my opinion, has to come from your mind. This battle every woman has to fight on her own and woman, I FEEL you these past few weeks. If YOU have been fighting in the battlefield of the mind against the weapons of insecurity and loneliness, I am with you.

You are not alone in the fight.

You are not alone because we, all and every woman, feel you.

You are not alone because God is there to catch every tear and hold your hand through every valley to help you walk out of that battle. Remember, you may not win every battle, and its ok because you just need to focus on winning the war. And I believe that you can and will win the war, you will build your self esteem, self love and self worth; you can do that by arming yourself with the strength of God, His love for you, His healing words and the perseverance to push through.

I am an introvert, it may be hard for some to believe that – but I am, I am just a very social introvert. When I am experiencing these attacks and the struggles I tend to close in and not share my thoughts and feelings with anyone, and let me tell you, it’s harder to get through when you’re dealing with it alone. So, find a friend or someone who loves you and will help you through the process. Talk to God in a way that works for you and you will find that your battle is almost over.

From one girl to another,

Luba

 

 

 

6 months old photoshoot in NYC

Who doesn’t love New York City?

It was my dream for a long time to have a photo with the city skyline in the background. My husband and I visited New York often together, we live only a couple of hours away. We have gone there for a weekend, for a day, and even our first honeymoon was in New York.

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We spent half of our honeymoon at a bed and breakfast in the upstate NY and it was a dream. Then we went to the city for a few days and stayed in the beautiful Novotel in a room overlooking Times Square.

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The day after we got there my husband of six days at that time was moving the car parking spot and was t-boned by a taxi on Park ave. He left his phone (it was supposed to be a quick move the parking spot trip) so I got a call from the ambulance drivers phone to go to the hospital to meet him.

In the end its a crazy story, married for 6 days and could have lost each other. If I was in the car with him, I would have been severely injured, the car was totaled and we had to rent a car to get home. It was my dads car by the way.

Now when we go back to New York, its so many memories!

Our second date was in the city where we almost had our first kiss on Park ave, but I thought it was too early.

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We got engaged in Central Park. And we will continue making memories.

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Favorite spot for food in New York: Halal Guys. We love truck food and we always get it for lunch in the city. You stand in line for a while, then you sit on whatever surface is available and eat. The full experience is great because it brings so many memories for us and you can’t get truck food like this anywhere else in the state or in the country.

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I hope you enjoy these family photos. We had so much fun working with our photographer and would recommend her services any day! She was amazing with our baby and got his attention to make sure he looked into the camera and smiled.

Styling details: 

I am really loving all the blush tones this year! I have a little obsession with cherry blossoms this year. You can find the dress I’m wearing here. Also a similar one here. And another option here and here.

Shoes are Manolo Blahnik, you can buy them here or rent them for a special occasion here.

Makeup:

I am wearing Mary Kay products, on the eyes: Into the garden collection eye shadow palette, it was a spring limited edition and I only have 2 left for grabs.

Lipstick is Matte Mauve Moment – current favorite for a pink nude type of lipstick for this spring, you can get it here, and Light nude lip liner you can check out here. Bronzer is a must this season, I am not tan yet, I am using this bronzer here.

Mascara is a huge deal right now because I am not using any eye liner and giving all the volume to my lashes with this amazing mascara, check it out here, and the review I wrote on it here.

 

I am a woman before I am a mother.

Today is Mother’s Day. You would expect that I would be thinking about what it means to be a mom and how motherhood changed me. But it’s not what I am thinking about.

I have been a mom for five minutes and I feel like I still have so much to learn! Every day brings new joys and new learning experiences, new opportunities to learn about myself and about my baby. One day I hope to be like the mom my children can adore and see Jesus through every word (thats hard for me), and every eye roll, and every hug and every tear.

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I am every woman. I am a mother. I live postpartum. You may see the depth of my eyes and the strong love for my baby, but what I see is the body that carried that baby, the wide shoulders that still carry that baby and won’t let me wear my old clothes. But he needs me.

This past week my thoughts have been consumed by more insecurity and negative thoughts of my body, my wifery (if that makes sense), and the way I am doing this motherhood thing. Today I am thinking of WHY. Why is it that some days I am not able to see past the imperfections of my body and feel proud of what the stretch marks mean, and feel proud of the wide shoulders and strong arms that carry a big baby boy around all day long?!

Why is it that some days I am not able to see past my questions and struggles as a business woman to confidently help others?

Why is it that the emotions and insecurities I used to struggle with as a teen are not going away? Maybe this one you also feel with me.

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I will choose to put my trust in God and take photos like these to remember that I am loved and I need no further reason to get dolled up, more often then I do.

Every time I share my thoughts with a woman or a teen girl, a mother, a sister, a grandmother, a married and a single woman, I find we all have something in common. We, a woman, each have the girl inside who is scared and wants to be loved for who she is, especially on the days when she can’t love herself. I feel like a lot of my adulthood revolved around either hiding this girl or pleasing her need to sulk in loneliness.

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I am not going to let the negativity stay. Every one of my fat cells belongs to a beautiful baby boy right now. And I feel like this picture can summarize my joy and my pain all in one. Because with every imperfection I am reminded that God loves me first, He made me in His image, by honoring my body I honor Him. Also, rolls made beautiful by lace.

Today I would to speak to that girl whom you like to hide, from one soul sister to another.

I am with you.

Let me hold your hand, look deep into your eyes until the human connection makes you teary, squeeze your hand a little and feel that lump in your throat that you’re unable to swallow.

I am with you. I feel your pains. I feel your insecurities. I see the imperfections in the mirror.

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I am here to tell you that you are beautiful, you are not alone and NO, you don’t look bloated, and NO, you don’t look 4 months pregnant. People don’t see what you see, they see the smile, the genuine laughter, the strong hugs you give that take your breath away a little, they see that bright lipstick, they see your hair curl and fall into your face, and they think its cute.

You are beautiful! Especially because it is Mother’s Day take a moment to love you, the real you. If you are a mother and if you are not, take a moment to hug that young girl who’s hiding deep inside, bring her out to the sunshine (even if its raining all weekend like it is where I am). Spend a minute with God and let His presence and truth fill your heart with hope. Because when you are filled with love only God can provide and truth only He can make true, you will be equipped to love yourself truly, be a better daughter, a kinder friend, and a more patiently loving wife.

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I teach women how to apply makeup, I love my job. To me there is a great joy in what I do because I am on a mission to make the world more beautiful one face at a time. When a woman feels good about how she looks, when she is equipped to be able to do her makeup the way that makes her feel beautiful, my job is complete. So, here is an open invitation. If you need that feeling, talk to me, find me, and let me help you find your way to beautify.

Take time today to beautify. I love that word because to me it brings hope. You can take anything and make it more beautiful! I believe God does that with every one of us! Start with your hair, do something special, not like every day, add just a little more mascara then usual, wear the good shoes and that dress that makes your body curve in just the right ways. (if you don’t have a dress like that talk to me)

Go out of the house, love yourself and go love on your mom. Bring her flowers with some good quality time.

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I am a mother now and I love things, but no matter how many things I have on my wish list, the best gift for me is spent with my baby when I don’t have to worry about taking care of anything else but him.

I am a mother now, but I am first a woman. I believe that if I am a better woman then I will also be a better mom. If you’re not a momma yet, take the time now to better yourself and prepare because that strength you will need later.

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I hope you will be inspired to be the best version of yourself, the woman God wants you to be. Set aside and fight insecurities! Encourage the woman next to you! Hug your mama extra tight tonight.

Love,

your soul sister.

 

P.s. Photos are taken by Delaine, a New York City photographer. It was a dream to work with her! Something you may never see, she really is good at what she does, is how busy and hectic that morning was for me, my hair wasn’t the way I wanted it, the dress I wanted to wear didn’t come in on time, and other stuff that just kept getting in the way of how I wanted to feel that day. So I put my good shoes on and wore a little extra mascara.

p.s.s. Blue shoes are my favorite. It’s the best statement color because it looks good on everyone!

The day I gave away my greencard

I became an American Citizen on Friday.

That morning I felt so frustrated, so alone and so rushed as I was getting ready for my ceremony. I even had a dream about my first half marathon race in New York. These feelings were similar, 7 years ago I ran my first half marathon in Queens NY, and after I crossed the finish line I walked away with a medal weighing heavy on my heart and felt my heart break with every tear that ran down my cheek.

It was such a big accomplishment, yet I felt so alone. There was no one there to witness this super important event, no one to cheer me on. My naturalization day came with similar feelings, except I invited friends to come, and they came. They responded, they texted and were present before I even I realized that I needed to be the one to invite them.

When your baby is asleep in your arms, but you have to take an oath to become an american. 


I gave up my citizenship of Ukraine on Friday. I gave up the country I was born in and grew up in. Today, I realize that for almost 15 years I tried really hard to fit in and be this American, which I wasn’t, be this person I thought an American should be. So who is this american that we all chase trying to become? Is it a dream that drives us as individuals to achieve, because in achieving THE dream we become the evidence of what this country is built on?

I was brought up valuing community; the people around you – they mean everything and share everything with you. The pain, the joy, the sorrow and the bliss. Everyone knows everything and you don’t mind one bit doing life with people all up in your business. Ukrainians value community, it’s not spoken of, but you know it when you go to a friends house for a baby shower and leave 9 hours later or when you have people show up at your house within hours notice, or no notice at all, and you all sit around the dinner table drinking tea until it’s 1:30 am and you can’t be late to work anymore, so they go home. I married an American and I had to learn this new way of doing community.

The American dream is about each individual achieveihg their dream life. Today I gave citizenship of the country I grew up in and I know in my soul that for me, being an American means to take the old and the new into the same melting pot and live from the lessons of the past. I didn’t have anyone come to cheer me on my first race because I didn’t ask, I felt alone because I didn’t let anyone in. Maybe I just needed a break from everyone knowing my business like when I grew up, but I am so thankful for the reminder to reach out, to ask, to let others know what goes on with me and invite them into my life.

That piece of paper is so important. It’s the one piece that you need that proves this day a reality.  Also, I wore the good shoes for the occasion. 


Perhaps later I can share with you more about what my American Dream is, but for now, I hope to make you appreciate your country, your origin, your ethnicity and your nationality. Be proud of where you come from and proud of where you are going. I hope to inspire you to think of what your dream is and take the reroute if your dreams have taken the back burner spot. Detours in life happen, but you can always turn around.

I feel blessed to have friends who either showed up, or responded to my invitation to come witness my swearing in ceremony. I feel freedom. I think that I will continue to experience freedom and learn its meaning in many new ways in the years to come, and very soon as I am rushing to get a passport for our first trip out of the country as all american citizen. As my country of birth has been at war and without peace for a some years now, I have peace, knowing that no new law or regulation or mistake can make me leave a place I know and now call home and the many people I now call family.

Taking a photo next to the county clerk and the judge, both of whom my husband knows from working together. Only to think that I wouldn’t have these photos if my friend Brigit didn’t show up with less then an hours notice ( love you lady!!) 


I will take lessons from both countries. I will be the dream chaser like a true American inspiration. I will be a gentle soul and a true friend or the community like my parents taught me to be, and I will do my best to inspire you to hug your close ones tight, be present in their life and get all up in each other’s business because that’s what makes us not alone, but a community.

P.S. here are some fun things that happened during the ceremony. The whole thing took about two hours, and if you have a baby, you know they will be hungry and need a nap and a diaper change within that kind of time frame. So I sat there, then nursed my baby without a nursing cover of my nursing friendly shirt, I rocked my baby gently to sleep for a 30 minute nap and he woke up just as my husband got there. That way I didn’t hold him in my arms as I went to get the official papers. And my friend who came with her baby got to experience the same thing and some baby talking on top of everything. We ran into a couple of people we knew in the court room and it was a memorable day as I shared this experience with 66 individuals from 47 countries. Also, I had to surrender my green card, which was my travel ticket for so long!

p.s.s. What’s your naturalization story?

Lash Intensity Mascara Review

Ok, so I’m still a woman, still the girl who would much rather not post a ‘no-makeup’ photo for the world to see, but this mascara has given me so much confidence I have to share with the world.

I am a beauty constant in a small town of upstate NY. I work with women to help them find their most beautiful version of self, just like makeup helped me!

This mascara is a new product to Mary Kay, it’s been a year since it came out and I started using it, I’m always talking about it, so I decided its time to share with you all!

Here is my before and after..

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I am using three coats of mascara. ( see video of application below) 

truth is, after I had a baby my lashes were so thin and everyone talked about their hair falling out, I felt like I lost my lashes. So mascara to the rescue!

The key to this mascara is the product + the wand. Application tip: Apply the mascara with long bristles first for the first coat, then apply it with the short bristles (adds product) and finish by spreading it out to the ends with the long bristles again.

Here is a video of how I apply it in real time:

 

HOW DO YOU GET YOURS?

Click link here to my website where you can pick one up! 

(free shipping when you get 2 or more mascaras)

For more questions send a message directly and I’d love to help!

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Your way to most beautiful lashes!

Stay fabulous!

xoxo

L.

 

Third Trimester Photoshoot

Can you stop time please!? My baby boy keeps growing and getting so long! I am sitting here looking through his newborn photos and catching baby fever just starring at my own baby!

Motherhood isn’t what I thought it would be.

I have 10 siblings, and being the oldest, I of course thought that having kids would be just like having to babysit all the time. Even though I am babysitting all the time, 24/7, being a mom is so much more then that! No one prepares you for the struggles and certainly no one can prepare you for the love that grows towards another human being.

I loved my pregnancy journey and I love being a mommy to a beautiful baby boy! As I sit and think back to my favorite pregnancy moments, I went back to my third trimester photoshoot.

P.s. take pictures earlier, maybe around 32-35 weeks if you are pregnant. I felt amazing but looking back at these now I am amazed at how big my belly was and how just huge I looked!

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Thank you for following my pregnancy journey! It was the busiest time of our life, but also one of the absolute best!

After taking a little bit of a break, I’m back and excited to share with you my favorite baby things, baby moments, experiences, set backs and celebrations!

Make sure to follow me on Instagram! CHECK OUT our story of day to day things and shout out when you find me on Instagram!

love,
L.

My pregnancy highlights

9 months is a long time only until you carry a little human inside, then it happens in a blink of an eye!

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My first trimester was so rough and I was so sick that I barely remember what happened. It went by fast, however, in comparison to the other part of my pregnancy. So I thought I’d share with you all some of the highlights (good and bad) from my journey.

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What I’ll miss the most is the movements and all the kicks inside my belly. Feeling little feet was amazing, even if they were up in my ribs for the last two months!

I am glad that dealing with nausea is over with. The worst part of it for me was throwing up every time I was brushing my teeth. It was literally the only nightmare for me before I got pregnant and that’s exactly what happened to me for 3 months straight!

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Second trimester was my favorite time. I felt like my bump was adorable and I could dress it up in so many ways! I loved shopping for cute outfits online. So far my favorite place is asos.com with a lot of options for dresses, shirts and pants!

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I had a lot of really fun moments that I will treasure for a long time! Among them was getting dressed up and taking maternity photos! It was a great time getting my husband out to do it with me and even though he was resisting, in the end he had a fun time and loves the memories those pictures created! Our photoshoot was actually on our 4th wedding anniversary and it was a great way to start celebrating the weekend!

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My husband is currently running for public office in Albany and this has been one of the busiest seasons of our lives! That’s why getting away for a baby moon was so difficult and also extremely refreshing for both of us! We didn’t tell anyone when and where and long we were gone for. It was perfect. We recommend that to every expecting couple if your life allows it!

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Second month of pregnancy was weird for me. I had extreme sensitivities to smells and food, and it was so bad that the entire month the only thing I could eat was pad thai and bread. You can imagine where my grocery money went to.

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For a while I thought that I was feeling my ligaments stretch, especially on the left side right where my ribs are, only to see on the ultrasound that it was the baby’s foot up in my ribs so high it was giving me real issues. Sometimes I couldn’t sneeze, laugh, cough without sharp pain, and tylenol became a must to fall asleep without feeling those toes playing with my ribs as if it was a piano! Somehow I feel like this is the pain I will miss. A lot.

I hope that sharing some of my thoughts and experiences during this journey is encouraging to some of you ladies! I am actually a private person and learned how to have public face, there are a lot of things I have kept private about my pregnancy, I won’t tell you how much weight I’ve gained even if I tell you that it was a lot more then I was planning on or wanted to, but I can promise that I can still be real about the ups and downs. And I’ve certainly had my ups and downs with this experience. It’s not always glamorous and there are a lot of gross moments, but in the end, my body is making a human from scratch, and that’s pretty incredible!

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Love your body, and what its able to do! It’s the only one you have! Enjoy every moment and every disappointment! Love every pound you put on to keep that babe healthy! Share your thoughts and fears with other women, they will support you and love you! Don’t be afraid to cry! When you have a real pregnancy brain moment, like the super embarrassing one, just laugh at yourself and let it go! Life is too short!

 

xoxo

Pregnancy Identity Crisis

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I secretly hope every woman goes through this.

As I look back at these photos, taken by my talented friend, I am thinking back of the mess inside my own head as soon as the first trimester was over. My first trimester was just like a cloud over my life and I barely remember it now because I was so sick and so out of it. As soon as I started to feel like a human again, I felt like the rug was pulled under my feet and I had to figure out who I was all over again.

I was worried about everything. My ability to be a mother, time management, being able to cook and take care of the household things like I normally would, and then there is work, my business, involvement in the community and friendships I still want to continue to nurture. I felt overwhelmed because all these thoughts of “how will I be able to do all this and take care of a tiny human” were inside my own head.

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It felt like an identity crisis, and I believe it was. Naturally so, as your world is turned upside down, you are going to question your every move and thought.

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I hope I can encourage every woman out there who feels an identity crisis coming on because of whatever life circumstances, it’s normal, and it doesn’t last long. I also hope that sharing my process helps someone else to stay encouraged and keep going through the process.

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I talked to a couple of my friends, who are also moms and have gone through what I was going through at the moment (that is key!). Allowed their encouragement and advice to sink in and process. I prayed, took long walks and allowed the thoughts in my mind come through one by one dealing with the pain and the changes as they came emotionally and physically. I got through that little chapter of my pregnancy and came out confident in what I my future will hold.

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No more freaking out. At least not until I’m in labor. Then I can’t speak for what I will feel.

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Here is what I learned in the second trimester of my pregnancy: 

 

Identity crisis is ok. Just as long as you don’t get stuck there too long and seek help.

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Talking to people who love you is good. Even when talking about it is unbearably hard.

 

Becoming a mom is not going to change the woman I am. It just adds to the woman I am.

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Being a mom isn’t going to stop me from living the life I always wanted. It just asks for some adjustments in life and maybe a couple of detours.

 

I still can make a difference in the world. I will. Especially by raising a child who is an incredible human being and becomes the man God already designed him to be! Somehow the thought of helping a helpless little human become amazing makes up for everything!

 

On another note, can I just stop for a moment and say that I think what a woman’s body goes through is incredible! This has been the hardest my body has worked in my entire life, and it created a miracle I am about to meet very soon. The way God created this process, a process when the love of two people creates a life, is astonishing to me. I think its beautiful. I am so thankful to have been picked to carry a life inside me!

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I am no less of a woman then I was before I was pregnant. My identity didn’t change because my life circumstances are changing. I am more then I was before.

 

I believe that there is so much more to me now then just a wife, just a business owner, just a sister, just a girl. I didn’t know you can grow so much within such a short time and I fully believe change is a necessity to live life to the fullest!

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Thanks to my friend Elysia for letting me play dress up and take these beautiful pictures. I felt amazing and she captured the feeling exactly! These hills and fields of Pensilvania are gorgeous!

Dress is from asos.com

Makeup and hair done by me, all Mary Kay of course and my favorite ‘perfect nude’ lipstick for my skin tone in Mary Kay gel matte lipstick in Mauve moment.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My pregnancy skin care

My first sign of pregnancy was weeks before I took the test. One day my skin turned crazy, my face started to sweat more and my foundation would glide off my face within an hour of putting it on.

Now that I am entering my third trimester, feeling good and getting back to work, I’d like to share my personal experience so far and what I’m using for skin care at each stage.

Of course the first thing I did was look into my skin care routine. NO! I went through all of my foundation options Mary Kay had to offer, I used finishing sprays, powders and just about anything else! Nothing made a difference. It was after 2 weeks of a struggle that I even did the unthinkable and went to look at other company’s foundation options. NOTHING helped. My skin was sweaty, red, blotchy, and the foundation wouldn’t stay on.

3 weeks later I found out I was pregnant.

1st Trimester

My skin was awful the entire time. I was sick, almost bedridden until about week 15. I could barely wear makeup because it irritated my eyes. Eyeliner was difficult to wear since my eye lids just seemed to sweat everything off.

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One of my favorite photos of our family and the belly starting to grow! 

My philosophy was to keep it simple.

Wear makeup only when needed and take it off after.

Remove items that are not safe for pregnant women from the skin care routine.

Listen to your body, your skin and pay attention to how your skin reacts. Everyone’s experience is very different!

My skincare routine 1st trimester: 

2nd Trimester

LOVED my second trimester.

Not only because I had more energy, could wear makeup again, could get my hair done and just feel like a human, but also because I could feel the baby move and it made this whole experience so much more fun and real.

Am I the only one who started to feel pregnant, like really feel it, when I could feel the baby kick inside and see the image of that same kick on the ultrasound machine?

Making a baby is a lot of work on your body, so this trimester I started on more skincare for my body, toning lotion, essential oils and more moisturizing to prevent (as much as I can those dreaded stretch marks).

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Half of how you feel is in your outfit. I am committed to dress up, wear heels (whenever possible) and look my best because when I do, I am feeling better about the growing belly, and about all the other experiences along the way! 

Get a good pregnancy massage (if your doctor is ok with it) and take some time getting pampered at the spa with a facial or mani/pedi. Gentle facials with very basic exfoliation is good for your skin at this point!

I noticed my skin changing for the better, if I had a pimple, it would go away within a day and I could add more of my supplements and vitamins for my skin. Its also when I started to use my cleansing facial brush again. Everyone’s experiences are different, so pay attention to how your skin feels and what it can handle, consult a doctor or dermatologist when in doubt.

My skincare routine 2nd trimester:

3rd Trimester

I am still at the beginning of my 3rd trimester, but so far I am happy with how its been. I get tired more, can’t put my socks on standing on one foot (even though I still try, probably because I forget that I have a belly in the way) and have more restless dreams then before.

My skin has been back to normal for the last month or so that I am able film more makeup tutorials and feel like myself again. My face seems to be filling in more so I have to look for more tricks with contouring and using a lot more of bronzer to get rid of my double chin and wide cheeks…

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Baby keeps growing. What a miracle. 

One of my now favorite things is using Grape Seed oil to moisturize my body, and to help with preventing Stretch marks. So far I don’t have any stretch marks at all, I’m thankful and hoping this continues till the end!

I haven’t taken time to exfoliate my skin much, outside of my regular cleansing routine, so I am excited to get back to my microdermabrasion routine, it will be just once a week until I’m comfortable that my skin can handle it well.

My skincare routine 3rd trimester:

all of the above in the 2nd trimester, all of my usual pre-pregnancy makeup &:

Pregnancy skin care NO-NOs:

First of all, consult your doctor about a recommendation on what is safe for your pregnancy. I am not a doctor, but here are some things to stay away from that I found in my research and study as a beauty consultant.

Second, ALWAYS check expiration dates on your personal beauty products at home and new ones you buy, anything with sunscreen and many vitamin infused products will have an important expiration date!

Beta hydroxy acids – basically anything that has medicine for acne prone skin.

Chemical Sunscreen – Avobenzone, homosalate, octisalate, octocrylene, oxybenzone, oxtinoxate, menthyl anthranilate and oxtocrylene.

Dihydroxyacetone – you can find this one in spray tanning products and is harmful when you inhale it.

Formaldehyde – you can find it in hair straightening treatments, nail polishes and eyelash glue.

Retinol – Vitamin A, retinoic acid, retinyl palmitate, retinaldehyde, adapalene, tretinoin, tazarotene and isotretinoin. It’s amazing for skin repair but is harmful to the fetus!

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I hope you find this helpful in your pregnancy journey and you don’t have to do as much research on your part! Thanks for sticking around and reading a bit about my skin journey so far!

Stay fabulous!