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March 22, 2017
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Zappos Rewards Show (+ Pet Adoptions!)


*Sponsored by Zappos*

Hey all! You know how much I love my fur babies and you may also already know that we adopted both our cats from local shelters when they were about 4-6 months old. Pet adoption is definitely a subject that’s close to my heart so when Zappos asked if I would like to team up with them to promote local animal adoption in the area, I was more than happy to say yes! Zappos is putting on a multi-city road show to say thank you to their customers, give back to communities, and make a few new friends along the way!

The Nashville leg of the tour will be March 24th-26th and will feature curated shopping, local food and music, giveaways, and (yay!) free pet adoptions as well! I have to say that I’ve been a giant fan of Zappos and their fast & free shipping, 365-day return policy, free returns, and 24-hour customer service for a really long time now. It’s always my go-to when I need a big selection of items fast (especially shoes!) and I never worry about how many items I’m ordering when I’m trying to find the right thing because the free return shipping is awesome. When packing for our Paris trip last year I was literally buying 6 pairs of shoes at a time to try with certain outfits so you can bet I appreciated the return policy then! I also returned something almost a year later and they took the item back no questions asked—love it! Anyways, it’s already a company that I love and use a lot so them doing events like this with pet adoptions only makes me love them more…

If you can come out and join the fun this weekend (especially if you need a fur baby to love!) then please come by! I’ll be out eyeing all the kitties and pups (and probably eating something unhealthy, let’s be honest preggo) on Friday night so make sure to stop and say hello if you see me there!

EVENT DETAILS:
March 24th-26th
115 Lyle Avenue Nashville, TN 37203
Times Friday: 4:00 pm to 9:00 pm, Saturday: 10:00 am to 9:00 pm, Sunday: 10:00 am to 2:00 pm
Two of my fave Zappos pairs of shoes are above! The chic clear flats were perfect for Paris and the nude heeled sandals are a giant wardrobe staple for me—I wear them all the time. Hope to see you there this weekend!

March 16, 2017
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My Pregnancy Workout Routine

First of all, let me say that “workout routine” sounds a bit intense for what I’ve actually been doing during this pregnancy. I have tried to be active as much as I can, but I’ve seen other women in our birth center classes that are doing some sort of sunrise P90X or Crossfit sessions (modified I assume) and that’s not exactly ever been my level of physical fitness even before I was pregnant. But, since I get asked time to time about staying fit during my pregnancy I thought I’d share a few things that I’ve been doing to try and stay active and healthy during the last two trimesters of pregnancy. I say the “last two” trimesters because after week 7 the only thing I worked out was my abs as I puked my guts out all day—awesome!

Walking: At the very beginning of the pregnancy I was mainly just doing 20-30 min of power walking in my neighborhood as often as I could. Todd would usually come with me which was nice as the early fall weather was still pretty and it was just a relaxing way to get moving and get some quality time in as well. I still will choose walking if I can’t get to my other options but it’s more of a moderate waddle lately and when I have sharp low back pain I opt for more stretching options instead so I don’t aggravate it more.

Yoga: I’ve been doing yoga throughout the pregnancy but I did the free version with online videos as long as I could until the last few months. I would do this first trimester yoga video when I felt well enough and then I moved onto this leg toning prenatal session into the second trimester. Oh, it’s not yoga, but I also love this prenatal arm workout video which I need to seriously do more of…not much time left to strengthen these weak noodle arms! In January I joined Blooma, a local yoga studio, that’s geared specifically towards expecting women and mothers and it’s been pretty awesome overall. They have prenatal classes that are specifically for pregnant women and then lots of other options as well that are “preggo friendly” as well as Mommy + Me type classes and workout classes that are specifically helpful for rebuilding the pelvic floor and other postpartum issues later. They even have childcare options during certain classes so you can either bring baby with you or take an hour for yourself and have them just across the hall. To be honest, I normally hate spending money to workout, but it’s been the best self-care thing that I’ve done by far so it’s been totally worth it. They have a sister studio in Minneapolis if you live there, but otherwise you may have to poll your local Mama group to see if something like that exists near you.

Barre: Yep, that’s right, they have a preggo barre class at Blooma! I put this as a different category even though it’s at the yoga studio because if you’ve ever done barre, you know it ain’t no yoga class! Yoga feels much more centering for me (and great for stretching and opening) but barre is a tough workout so it’s a nice change to switch back and forth between them. It’s actually baby-wearing friendly so it’s usually half expectant Mamas and half with their babies in carriers or on a blanket next to them on the floor. You’d think it would be chaotic but the babies seem to like it!

Birth Ball: I don’t do a ton of actual exercises on the birth ball, but I do sit on it a lot to help with better posture to encourage Baby to stay in a good position and to help with the low back pain. I actually turned my den side table into a temporary work station the last few months since I wanted to sit on the ball while working but needed a lower height table in order to type. It looks a bit odd but it totally works and keeps me from slinking into a couch for hours on end.

Foam Rollering: This is a bit of a newer one, but since my low back pain kicked in a month ago, I’ve been adding in some new things to see what helps and a lot of people suggested I try a foam roller. It’s basically a really dense foam cylinder that you get on top of on a yoga mat or carpet and roll yourself over it to massage and release certain muscles (this is a good how-to video). I usually target my legs and glutes since my low back is an issue, but it can help with lots of different trouble spots.

See my mini work station above? If I could just get a drink holder attached on the side, I’d be all set! When it comes to workout clothes, it’s gotten harder and harder to find tops that are long enough so I’m always glad I got a pair of yoga pants with the panel in the front at the start of my pregnancy so I never have to think about the belly hanging out. I’ll probably move to a more high waist option like these or these after baby to keep things tucked in a bit when I get back to working out. I also spend most of my days lately in sneakers (these are similar to my favorite pair) so I don’t overdo it when I want to wear a heel on a weekend occasion for a bit.

Overall being active in these ways definitely helps me feel better, but it’s also a balance to know if you are short on time if a nap or relaxing bath may actually do more for your self-care then rushing across town stressed when you are late for yoga…Anyways, that’s what I’ve been up to the past 7 months to try and stay healthy and prepare for my birthing day! Let’s hope it all pays off come the big day!!

March 7, 2017
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My Maternity Shoot in Palm Springs!

Remember when we went to Palm Springs for our Babymoon in January (see our trip here and here)? Well, since I knew we were going to such a photogenic spot I wanted to try and get in a mini desert maternity photo shoot while we were there so I brought along a pretty dress for it juuuuust in case. Our friend Ryan is a profesh photographer and took some photos for us at magic hour one night near the mountains and I really love how they turned out…
Such a pretty location, right?! If you ever go to Palm Springs this is just behind the “Welcome to Palm Springs” sign when you first get to town and there’s even a parking lot nearby so it’s super accessible to get to for photos. Also, I know you’ll ask but I tried and I can’t find the link to that nude lace dress! It’s from Forever 21 so if you can find the link and it’s still available, let me know so I can share. Can’t wait to print a few of these out and display them around the house, thanks Ryan!

Photos by Ryan Strong (and a few by Todd Gummerman)

January 27, 2017
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How I Tame My “Winter Hair”

Ahhh, winter. It’s time to layer up the clothing and the bronzer since you are entering Pale City for the next half of the year. The other big downside for me has always been the dreaded “winter hair” phase of the year, and if you’ve ever had that issue, you know exactly what I mean. My hair feels limp and flat as well as staticky as it clings to my face. What’s a girl to do? Well, over the years I’ve developed a few tricks that when all added together have really helped out a lot with the downsides that come with the season.
The first thing I do is an Olaplex treatment before I wash my hair. It’s basically a leave-in-conditioner that I brush through wet hair (I’ll wet it and towel dry it first) and then I’ll leave it in a bun or a clip for a good 30-45 minutes before washing it out. The longer you leave it in, the better, but I noticed that if I go closer to an hour and it starts to dry in my hair, it doesn’t wash out quite as cleanly when I shampoo. You are supposed to use this at home in conjunction with getting an Olaplex treatment at your salon as well, but I’ve been skipping that salon treatment while pregnant and just doing the home conditioner and it still works wonders for me. I only do it every other week so a bottle of it lasts a long time but it gives my hair that soft “just left the salon” feeling.

In between doing the Olaplex treatment, I’ll spray in this Wella Conditioning Spray on clean wet hair and brush it through as I detangle my hair. It’s another great way to add some moisture to dry winter hair, and you use so little that it also lasts a really long time.I will usually dry my hair and then section it off and brush through 3″ sections before straightening them with a straightener, but I noticed that the more I handle my hair, the more likely it is that static will appear. This Vanity Planet ceramic straightening brush is really helpful because I can brush and straighten my hair in a few passes rather than having to do multiple strokes with both the brush and straightener (the ceramic bristles are also designed to be anti-static so that helps too). It also has a heat control so I can set it higher the first time I straighten when I need more heat and lower if I’m running the brush through for a touch-up (us faux blondes have to be careful about too much heat on our hair). P.S. I’m partnering with Vanity Planet for this post so if you use the code “gummergalhair” you can get 50% off your brush so you can score one for only $35, nice!

 

While I do want to avoid over-brushing my hair to avoid winter static, I LOVE using a boar bristle teasing comb once my hair is straightened to backcomb the roots at the crown of my head to bring some volume back to my hair. My strands get craaazy flat in winter (it looks like I have hat hair all the time) so I use this guy throughout the week to bring back some volume to my roots. I’ve even been known to carry it around in my purse in case of hair emergency!
Last but not least, to combat any possible lingering static cling I’ll spray a small amount of this Sexy Hair Play Dirty spray wax onto my fingertips and then roll my fingers along the ends of my hair and down any strands that sit near my face (where the static is the most annoying). You only need a teeny bit, so start out with a quick spray and get more if needed.Well, now you guys know all my winter hair secrets! These tricks definitely help me make it through the winter months and feel a bit more confident about these goldie locks of mine. Hope you found something that can help tame your winter mane!

October 19, 2016
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Home Tour with Joybird Furniture!

Just wanted to let you guys know about a fun home tour that Todd and I did with Joybird furniture a few weeks ago that’s up on their site now! We have two of their sofas that we just love (the Braxton and the Hopson) so we were happy to share how we feature them in our home. I’m rather used to being in photos but video is a whole different ballgame for me so when they said they wanted to film the tour I was just hoping I could make it through without looking too much like a moron. Thankfully it actually came out really cute and I love the final clips. It was also fun to get to do something with Todd since we usually are working on separate projects most of the time, but he makes everything more enjoyable if you ask me….Check out the video if you get a chance, I think it will be a really fun one to look back on someday for sure!signature2 copy