Ask Liz over 2 years ago by Liz Adams

Coffee with Liz

Weekly blogger Q&A series with Liz Adams of Sequins & Stripes.

One of these days I’m going to get this post out on time so you can actually read it with your morning coffee! TGIF am I right? We went to Hamilton last night and I’m exhausted. So so so worth it thought! It was actually my second time seeing it but I got tickets for my parents and my sister for Christmas. Now I’m excited to spend the day with my babies and enjoy a few days at home. Thanks for reading this week, friends!

How are you feeling about the overall trend? I know you like to stick to basics and classics, but how do you decide what fun new trends to mix in each season? I’ve seen you wear some velvet overalls on Instagram, and I can’t decide if I should go for the denim overalls or if I should leave them back in junior high circa 1998.

I love overalls! Honestly I don’t think of them as a trend really, more like a version of jeans 🙂 I wouldn’t say that I would wear them if I were grabbing cocktails with friends but they are fun for running errands, meeting girlfriends for lunch, etc. A good daytime look! They are casual but also feel styled and cute. A few of my favorite styles here and here. In terms of mixing trends into my style – I would say that I indulge in trends to some extent. For example, this season we are seeing a lot of florals (groundbreaking!), nautical/Americana vibes, saturated colors – and I definitely dabble in all of the trends to an extent but I think it is more how you wear them in an outfit. I am most likely not going to wear a head to toe yellow outfit but I may dabble in some accessories or a pair of shoes. It’s all how you wear it!

You touched briefly on this in a prior coffee with Liz post that you had a miscarriage before having Charlie.  I’m wondering how you stayed calm when you found out you were pregnant again and didn’t constantly worry about having another miscarriage?

It’s tough. I don’t think there is a good answer for this because it will probably always be in the back of your mind. It was when I was pregnant with both Charlie and Jack. I think my biggest piece of advice is to just stay positive, try not to add stress to an already stressful situation and just let your body get to that 11-12 week mark. Indulge in things that make you happy, take care of yourself and just try to trust your body. When we had our miscarriage I remember my doctor telling me that your body knows what is best, that if it were a strong pregnancy your body would support it and it is a positive to know that you can get pregnant. I would try to find comfort in that!

My almost 7 month old doesn’t sleep through the night, we’ve fallen into nursing to sleep…which means my husband and I have never had a date night! Did you ever have to break Charlie of nursing to sleep?

Oh yes. It is called sleep training. Charlie was never fully nursed to sleep after 3 months old. I would always feed him and put him in bed awake, sleep but awake. Sleep training is not easy but I promise you’ll come out the other side with a much better sleeper. I remember talking to me pediatrician about getting Charlie to sleep on his own and avoiding the 3am wake up calls. She told me the greatest gift you can give your child is the ability for them to put themselves to sleep. It’s so true. Not only is it good for them but it is so good for you! Whatever path you decide to take with that (we did the cry it out method which I know a lot of moms are uncomfortable with) it is worth it!

Since we’v been together, my husband and I have always looked forward to starting our family. Now that the time is right on paper, I have cold feet. Was there a time when you knew you were ready to be a mom to Charlie and Jack?

Not really! I mean I knew that motherhood was definitely in my future but did I have this feeling that it was time? No. I honestly don’t think you’re ever prepared. As soon as I took a positive pregnancy test I had this overwhelming feeling of “lets do this!” You’ll always wish you had taken another trip, gone on more dates, moved to a different city, relished time with your friends and so on but becoming parents is a whole other season of life. It is definitely more demanding and you don’t have as much freedom but when it happens I promise it will (eventually) feel like your life is exactly where it is supposed to be. It’s amazing.

Do you have a vacuum recommendation?

Ugh I wish I could say yes! Do you?? Right now we have the Bissel Pet Vacuum. It definitely gets the job done! I have heard amazing things about the Shark vacuums (which are a good price!) and this one has awesome reviews on Amazon. I’ve always wanted to try Dyson too. Any reader recommendations? Leave them in the comments!

Do you have any suggestions for how to buy clothes for growing kiddos. I want our little guy to be stylish his first year of life but also want to be practical knowing they grow so quickly.

I rely on Old Navy and Zara for clothes for my boys. Mostly because their stuff is cute but not crazy expensive! When it has been worn to death or the stains no longer wash away – I don’t feel guilty getting rid of them because they didn’t break the bank. Plus, they do grow so much in the first few years! TJMaxx also has some great items for kiddos!

I am moving to Chicago next month {so excited!] and would love to get involved with a local non-profit or volunteer organization once I am there. Any recommendations?

Can you please suggest several straight jeans? I saw that you suggested one on the recent coffee post, but I’m hoping you have more.

Where are some places you like to shop for art?

Minted.com is my go-to!  

Do you have any cute dress ideas (maternity or non-maternity) for my baby shower in April? I would love something really spring-y / feminine or just special 🙂

Your hair always looks so healthy! I know you try to restrict the amount of heat you put on it each week but any tips for those of us who have a literal lion’s main when we let our hair air dry?

When I let my hair air dry I do a few things to make sure it sets just right! First I’ll blow dry the roots of my hair, just to smooth out any fly aways. Next I’ll use this Bumble & Bumble cream. It was recommended by my hair stylist who said it was great for days when you want your hair to air dry. Then I’ll put a little bit of this serum on just the ends to ensure everything dries smoothly. That’s it!

I love that you shared other names you were considering for your boys and I’d love to hear the girl names you’ve considered during your pregnancies.

We love Lucy and Eleanor (call her Ellie).

What are some of your go-to meals for Charlie that he’ll eat without a fight?

For breakfast he loves peanut butter toast, maple chicken sausage from Applegate, honey nut cheerios with milk or scrambled eggs. For lunch he usually eats avocado toast, cottage cheese, tuna salad, peanut butter & jelly, pirate’s booty, fruit (with every meal) or grilled cheese. For dinner, if I’m feeling lazy – mac and cheese and frozen chicken fingers with ranch dressing for dinner will always work. I usually always try to cook Charlie a version of what we are eating. So mini burgers, pasta, tacos, salmon, veggies, he loves Dr. Praegers broccoli and kale bites, etc. Luckily Charlie is a very good eater and is always up for trying anything!

For my graduation in June, I need to find white shoes which I’m having a hard time finding. Looking for a classic-looking shoe that is under $100! Do you have any recommendations?

 I’m not sure if you’re looking for something casual or dressy but I love these loafers and these slides! If you’re looking for something dressier then these ankle strap sandals are so classic, you can’t go wrong with this pointy toe pump or these espadrille wedges are fun!

I’m 6 weeks in with my first newborn and though I adore him, sometimes it feels like I’m running on fumes. Would love to know when and what help or support system you put in place to start having some time to recharge and take care of yourself. It seems like even an hour or two away a couple of times a week to workout or go to an appointment would go a long way.

 It’s so true! Taking time for yourself, even an hour, is so important! I always feel guilty leaving and so excited to come home but that time away is so so good for us. It makes us better mamas! I hired a babysitter to help me for 6 hours on Wednesdays. Even if it mean’t I could get out of the house and sit at a coffee shop by myself or go to Target without a babe. I think it is really important to feel like the women we were before kids. Although our lives have changed for the better we don’t want to let go of who we have always been. I also thinking finding play dates or classes with other mamas was super helpful. Even if the babes just lay on a blanket, you get to have conversation with another adult and feel like you’re not alone. I also met a bunch of mom friends (who I wouldn’t have met otherwise!) at music class. I would just say be proactive! You deserve it.

I recently changed work office to a larger, brighter space.  Any recommendations for office decor and accessories to will soften the space, but still come off as professional?

I love the floral artwork from Minted.com! Since I haven’t been in an office environment for a long time and I’m not quite sure exactly what you need…I love Threshold office decor from Target! How cute is this marble stapler

I am turning 30 in a few weeks and am having a celebration at Homeslice in Lincoln Park. I want something cute to wear that is fun but still cold-weather appropriate since it will likely still be freezing in February! Any suggestions?!

 What about a fun top, skinny ankle jeans, heels and fun earrings? Throw on a leather jacket, too! I think you just have to grin and bear the weather for your 30th!

Are you experiencing any hair loss with Jack? Can you recommend any products that would give this sad mom’s hair some life? 

Not yet but I know it is coming. I think nursing helps keep it in place until that hormone drop kicks in again. My hairstylist always told me to keep taking prenatal vitamins for your hair. It will help keep it in place and combat any hormonal change. In terms of products, I don’t really have a recommendation but I think I am going to start trying Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides! You can dissolve it in your morning coffee or any beverage and it is supposed to help a lot. It is great support for hair, nails, skin, bone and joint growth.

My sister is turning 30 in a few months.  My brother-in-law, mom, and I want to go in and get her a really special gift.  She has a style very similar to yours and is a new mom.  We are thinking a nice bag or jewelry? Any ideas/suggestions are appreciated!

 I love this beautiful tote (you can monogram it!) and you can even include a diaper bag insert so she can transform it into a diaper bag (without looking like a total mom). I wear my Maya Brenner initial necklace everyday and these initial rings for my boys. If you really wanted to splurge on her – this bag would make her feel less like a mom and excited for her next date night!
 

When you moved out to Hinsdale did you find a new doctor to deliver Jack?

Yes. I was really sad to leave my practice at Northwestern, especially after having such a positive experience delivering Charlie at Prentice. Luckily I had some friends who already lived out here and they recommended a great doctor. I delivered at Hinsdale Hospital and honesty, I liked it more than Prentice! The doctors and nurses were AMAZING. So attentive, brand now facilities (it honestly felt like I was in a Prentice room without the views) and I think because they have less traffic you receive so much more attention as a patient. They even offer complimentary in-room neck and back massages for new moms! I was worried but it was such an amazing experience. 
 
Don’t forget to email [email protected] with your questions for next week’s Coffee with Liz post!
 

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  1. I just bit the bullet and bought a Dyson Absolute stick vacuum V8 and I have to say it is the best purchase I have ever made for my house. We used to have a Shark Animal, but it just didn’t live up to all the great comments online. We also have two dogs so keeping up with vacuuming is a priority. The Dyson is so easy to use and change out parts the canister is small, but if it needs to be emptied it is super easy to empty and keep going.

  2. Vacuum recommendation- Dyson Pet Vac. It’s totally worth the money! We have a dog and I’m allergic to her(my husbands dog before we were married), but I have very few issues with the hair and the dander. It’s also pretty lightweight and easy to maneuver. My only complaint is that using on the stairs is a little difficult, the arm for the attachments is not very flexible. Other than that, I love it.

  3. We have a small Miele vacuum and it is amazing – so worth the price tag. We did have the cordless Dyson and I loved it being so handy in our small apartment but the charge life was so short and we could easily fill up the capacity from one room with our black labs fur everywhere.

  4. I’m glad you touched on the topic of when you feel (or don’t feel) “ready” to start a family. The question was phrased exactly the same way I’m currently feeling—my husband and I have been thinking and talking about babies for a long time and now that we’re close to start trying finally, I’m getting scared! haha! It’s just such a huge life-altering change!! The idea of that can feel overwhelming, but everyone who’s gone through it says it’s completely amazing. I’m glad to hear your perspective and to know I’m not the only one who has felt this way! 😀

  5. The Dyson Animal Stick Vacuum is great! Cordless, amazing suction, picks up all the dog hair. Got it for our wedding and LOVE it.

  6. We just got a shark and I would absolutely recommend it- particularly given the price point. It’s a high quality vacuum at a lower price point. We’ve actually heard that the Dyson can be brutal to your carpet and wear it out faster because the suction is SO good, so it made sense to us to purchase the shark.

  7. I have a Shark TruePet vacuum and it’s amazing for both my hair and pet hair! Tons of suction, when I first got it I used it on a large rug I had JUST vacuumed with my old vacuum and finished with nearly a full canister of dog hair. Yuck!! I got mine on Amazon Prime Day on sale and they have tons of attachments

  8. The cordless Dyson is one of the best purchases I’ve ever made. We have a white lab mix (and I one year old babe) and to be able to do a quick vacuum is life changing. No cords! We splurged on the V8 or whichever is the one that lasts 40 minutes- but I never vacuum for that long. It’s also great on the stairs, couches, really anywhere. I hung it on the wall in my bedroom behind a curtain so it’s always within reach. I never thought I could actually love a vacuum. It’s the best!!