My Babymoon Heroes || Azura Bay + A Few Other Brands to Love


A “babymoon” might seem like the cheesiest thing a pregnant couple can do but, after two non-baby-moon pregnancies, taking a vacation during this one was one of my top priorities. The transition from two kids to three is daunting (less than one to two, but, any change is nervewracking) and I knew that AJ and I likely wouldn’t have the time to get away together for a long while after this pregnancy.

So, I saved up my money from this little job here and booked us a trip to Cancun.

And let me tell you right now, all of the cheesiness is gone from the term “babymoon” now. It’s necessary. It’s healthy. It’s smart to get away.

This was by far my favorite vacation we’ve taken together — we had no agenda, nowhere to be, no one to see or please. Just each other and the beach and lots (and lots) of food and virgin drinks. We didn’t take nearly as many photos as I planned; the sign of a trip well-taken, I assume, but it was a beautiful escape that I’d 100% recommend to any mom-to-be, whether this is your first or fifth babe.

I packed fairly light for our four day excursion, but one area I went a bit overboard on (intentionally) was with swimwear. I rarely get to wear my swimsuits, so when given the chance, I decided to bring three along, even though one was really all that was necessary.

Of all the pieces (all from ethical brands either new or secondhand), my Azura Bay pieces proved to be some of the best for the occasion.

What I wore:

Black & Gold Maria Bikini Set

Lemona Romper

Neither of these pieces are “maternity” but I love the extra room in the romper for a bump and, of course, all you need to wear a bikini is a body to put it on ;)

Azura Bay stocks ethical brands from all over the world, simplifying one of the most tricky aspects of ethical shopping: finding ethically made, affordable, and beautiful undergarments.

Other Trip Heroes:

Encircled Chrysalis Cardi: although I didn’t get any photos in this piece, I wore it on both plane rides as a scarf/pillow, and wore it as a wrap dress at the resort.

Sotela Stella Jumpsuit: this piece is a forever favorite for so many reasons. You all know my love for Sotela, and this jumpsuit is a true staple in my wardrobe. It’s bump and breastfeeding-friendly too!

Bikyni Set: One of my other favorite swimwear brands, I purchased the top a few years ago and they so sweetly sent me over a pair of bottoms for our babymoon.

QuiQuattro Turkish Towel: I’ll be sharing a full post on this brand in the coming months, but when I decided we were going to Mexico, this towel was the first thing I packed. I love using it at home too — so beautiful and functional.

Sseko Crossover Slides: The only pair of shoes I brought for the trip, other than the sneakers I wore on the plane were my trusty Sseko slides. I love this brand and everything they stand for.

We had such a relaxing, beautiful time and decided that we want to make it a yearly thing — likely with all three kiddos in tow next time ;)

Have you ever taken a babymoon? Tell me where you went!

*This post wasn’t sponsored by anyone, but some of the items mentioned were gifted as part of a long term ambassador partnership with the brands. Thank you for supporting the brands that make SL&Co. possible!*

Feller Shades || Wooden Sunglasses That Give Back

Feller Shades || Wooden Sunglasses That Give Back

I've always loved sunglasses. For as long as I can remember, a pair of sunnies always seemed like the most versatile accessory to any outfit. I went through the giant "bug eye" sunglasses that are much to big for your face phase, the aviators phase (which I'm still kind of in, I won't lie,) and the cheap-o pair from Forever 21 that breaks within 16 minutes of leaving the store phase. 

The only phase I think I've yet to hit is the "lifetime commitment" sunglasses phase. The kind of sunnies that real adults wear. The glasses you reach for over and over, wear with every outfit, and keep safe and sound for years to come.

Feller Shades has eased me into that phase of my sunglasses journey with their handmade, wooden, endlessly classy and unique glasses. 

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Slow Living FAQ No. 2 || When Your SO Isn't On The Same Page

Slow Living FAQ No. 2 || When Your SO Isn't On The Same Page


Neither my husband or I are minimalists by nature. I tend towards disorganization and am a "recovering shopaholic" and my husband, although he likes a clean house, doesn't have the same drive to simplify and streamline our life like I do. 

One of the most common struggles I hear from people trying to simplify their life is that they feel like their spouse or significant other will slow down the process of minimizing — and not in a good way. 

If there's one thing marriage has taught me is that you can't force your partner to do something they don't want to do, and even if they do bend their lifestyle to accommodate yours, the changes (if they're not genuinely from the heart) won't stick around for long. 

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4 Ways to be a Better Listener (And Why it Matters)

I always thought that I was a good listener until I actually put it to the test. Our Sunday school class was going into a series about listening that really resonated with me. I picked up a book my mother had given me about the subject and decided that I would learn to be a better servant, better wife, and a better friend by becoming a better listener.

It’s harder than you’d think. 

Most people don’t think of themselves as bad listeners, which may be a big part of the problem. Perhaps we don’t check our phone as much as that one person we know, but there always seems to be so many distractions keeping us from fully immersing ourselves in one moment.

Too often I find myself thinking more about what I am going to say than fully listening to what someone else is telling me. Women often accuse men of jumping too fast to “fix” things instead of just listening to their problems, but a lot of the time I find myself doing the same thing to my husband when he’s telling me about his rough day. Many of our personal arguments are often caused by misunderstandings, or not really listening, to what the other is saying. It’s humbling to think that maybe people don’t need my input as much as they need me just to shut up and allow them to be fully heard.

Most people don't think of themselves as "bad listeners", but when you find it hard to focus on what the person is saying rather than thinking of how you're going to respond, these 4 tips will help you value the person you're talking with and become a better listener.

Listening is difficult when we disagree with what’s being said. We only listen to what we like to hear instead of trying to understand things from the other’s point of view. With the present election coming up, and all the social issues around us, it’s easy to want to cloister ourselves in with other people who agree with us and chuck rocks at the “other side”. There needs to come a point where we humble ourselves enough to let go of our defensiveness and hear them out even when we strongly disagree with their opinions. We may find that we can learn something from them, or that their viewpoints were not as wacky as we first believed. 

Though I am still growing in this (I’m no expert, by any means), here are a few tips for better listening:

Slow down

Don’t assume that you already know what someone else is going to say. Listen to them without interrupting or interjecting your “helpful” advice.

Put away distractions

Put your phone out of reach, or turn it off when you are dedicating time to listening. Checking your phone during a conversation greatly increases the other person’s sense of insignificance, almost like they are the distraction begging you for some time together.

Know when to help

A lot of the time people don’t want to hear your fix-all solutions to their problems, they just want someone there to share their pain or experiences with. Don’t treat people like projects because they will catch on to that attitude and close themselves off to you. There are times when people can be stuck in a cycle of harmful self-shaming where you can interject—lovingly, tenderly, with much care for their personal benefit.

Stay humble

Listening is a chance to serve others and allow them space to feel valued and validated. There will be times when you hardly get to say anything that you may have wanted to share with them, but it may be for the better.

A lot of listening has to do with living more simply, with less distractions and a lot of patience. Know that to be a really good listener takes time and effort; but it is a skill anyone can learn.

At Home Date Nights || "Date Crates"

I've been dying to share this at home date night with you all for so long! We decided to try something new this month and have a date night shipped right to our door step.

Sound too good to be true? It kind of was, in fact. I heard about Date Crates on Instagram and after reading a little bit more about them, I knew I had to try it out- so we ordered one (actually it was a gift from my mother-in-law. Thanks Chris! ;) 

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