Monthly Archives

March 2016

Before Pregnancy, During and Forever After

17 Ways to wear: Motherhood is My muse tee

Motherhood is our museits what inspires us, what drives us, and, at the end of the day, is the reason we all do what we do.  #motherhoodismymuse  Check out these ladies and the 18 different ways they show off their motherhood pride.

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@missesmeili

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@happilyhughes

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@bondgirlglam

BLANQI motherhood is my muse tee

@aubreykinch

BLANQI motherhood is my muse tee

@ceciliaharvard , photo by Kandice Breinholt

BLANQI Ayesha Curry motherhood is my muse tank

@ayeshacurry

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lalasmama

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Karla Reed BLANQI motherhood is my muse tee

@karlareed

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@mswrightsway

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@joidan82

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@mandyodle

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@happilyhughes

BLANQI lauren hartman motherhood is my muse tee maternity leggings

@laurenhartman

Cecilia harvard in BLANQI motherhood is my muse tee

@ceciliaharvard

Before Pregnancy, During and Forever After

Running While Pregnant – 10 Dos and Don’ts Before Hitting the Pavement

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So you’ve got a bun in the oven and are wondering about staying in shape during your pregnancy … even if it’s a different shape! While you might be banned from weightlifting and contact sports, there are still plenty of fitness activities you can engage in, including running.

First, let’s take a minute to talk about the perks of a fit pregnancy. Not only does it make you feel better and help you gear up for labor, it brings a raft of other benefits as well, such as:

  • Lower risk of gestational diabetes
  • Stronger core, helpful in speeding up labor
  • More energy
  • Reduced back pain and constipation
  • A healthier baby

Having said that, there are still a few factors you need to take into consideration before hitting the pavement. Below, we’ll talk five DOS and five DON’TS when it comes to an active pregnancy. That way, you can feel your best and keep your growing babe hearty without compromising your health or safety. Let’s do this.

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DO

  1. Consult Your Doctor

As with everything else in pregnancy, you should consult your doctor, midwife or health provider. They’ll be able to tell you whether an exercise is safe not only for pregnant women in general, but for your pregnancy in particular. There may be special risk factors associated with your baby, and you should always take those into account before starting or continuing an exercise regimen.

Note that even if your doctor tells you that you can do something such as run, that doesn’t necessarily make it a good idea. If something is painful, uncomfortable, unpleasant or simply doesn’t feel right, stop right away until you’ve seen your medical provider.

  1. Get Proper Nutrition

It’s crucial that you get proper nutrition while working out, because exercise can be especially depleting during pregnancy. This means eating healthy, well-rounded meals and taking prenatal vitamins to supplement your diet. Always eat plenty of protein right after you run, as well as an hour or two before you work out.

  1. Support Your Body

Never forget to wear supportive shoes when running; your feet are dealing with enough right now. Also wear a top that keeps growing belly and breasts in place. Check out the BLANQI top featured by Women’s Running, which offers tons of support and a whole lot of cuteness to boot.

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  1. Stay Hydrated

Getting enough water is crucial in pregnancy, because the baby uses so much. Dehydration can lead to poor outcomes for you and the little one, including neural tube defects, premature pregnancy and low breast milk production later. Keep your system and the baby’s amniotic sac flushed by drinking lots of H2O.

  1. Pick a Flat Surface

Running on uneven surfaces increases your chance of a fall, which can hurt both you and the baby. Instead, choose flat surfaces such as tracks, sidewalks or gravel trails. Alternatively, you can choose low-impact alternatives such as water running (which studies have shown to be better for people with compromised joints) or fast-paced walking.

 

DON’T

  1. Don’t Start Running During Pregnancy If You Didn’t Run Before

It’s very, very important that you don’t start running during pregnancy if you weren’t a runner before. Pregnancy brings many changes in your body, including a loosening of joints due to the hormone relaxin, and vigorous exercise to which you are unaccustomed can do more harm than good. Therefore, this is not the time to start a new regimen or train for that marathon you always dreamed of. That doesn’t mean you can’t do it ever; just don’t do it now.

  1. Don’t Try to Set a New Record

Like the above tip emphasizes, this isn’t the time to try something new or hit your most intense goals. Although it’s always important to listen to your body and avoid pushing yourself too hard – which can lead to injury – this is especially important in pregnancy. Your body already has to adjust to new demands on muscles, joints and bones in the form of extra weight. Don’t add extra impact as well.

You can, however, push yourself in other, safer ways. If you’re still craving movement, go for longer walks. If you want to engage in intense cardio more often, try high-intensity interval training (HIIT) on an elliptical. This allows you to get your sweat on without harming your joints. Again, though, get a doctor’s approval before jumping on.

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  1. Don’t Ignore the Warning Signs

If anything seems wrong, that could mean it is, so don’t ignore it. Vaginal bleeding, dizziness, headaches or chest pains shouldn’t be taken lightly. Instead, stop immediately and consult your healthcare provider. Do not begin any form of exercise again until you have been cleared by your doctor, midwife or other provider, because it might not be safe for you or the baby.

  1. Don’t Overheat

Getting too hot can lead to neural tube defects, which can in turn result in major birth defects. Avoid this by staying hydrated and staying out of the sun on hot summer days. Exercise gently, so that you don’t get too hot, and take cool showers afterwards.

 

  1. Don’t Be Hard On Yourself!

The last and most important tip is don’t be too hard on yourself. Remember that you’re growing a life and that’s a really tough, demanding, important job. It is, moreover, a job that doesn’t last very long, so it’s worth doing it right while it’s happening. The best way to avoid beating yourself up is to refuse to focus on what you used to be able to do, and instead focus on what you can do now. Atta girl.

Running while pregnant is a great way to stay in shape and ensure you and your baby are the healthiest you can be. Just make sure that you’re prepared for the load you’re putting on your body and don’t endanger your own safety, and you’ll be fine. Ready … set … go!

BLANQI Baby Bumps, Valerie's Life

From my “There’s a bun in the oven” to my personal fave, “I need a BLANQI!” // Pregnancy announcement inspo for the mama-to-be.


When I was pregnant with my first born 10 years ago this month, there wasn’t really a way to “announce” being pregnant more than just saying it out loud, “Whoo hooo, whoahhhh, aahhhh… I’m pregnant!” With it being my first, and a bit of a surprise, I slowly eased into announcing my pregnancy to family and friends when the time came that I needed to clarify that my growing bump was a baby, and not a burrito. Now four baby announcements later, each one has had it’s own style and tone, that in a way, reflects the emotions and season of motherhood I’ve been in behind the news.

1. Jude was this amazing blessing that changed the entire course of my life, i.e. my pregnancy inspired BLANQI, but tears and fears pretty much summed up my 1st trimester. With 50% of pregnancies being ‘unplanned’, I know I can’t be alone in this situation, which is why I feel I have to be honest and share that reality. Not every pregnancy gets a ‘perfect’ pregnancy announcement, but the end result is what really matters, and my baby-now-nine year old was totally worth the struggle. So if an elaborate pregnancy announcement doesn’t interest you or you don’t have the emotional energy for it, no big deal, you’ll still be blessed with a beautiful baby- with or without a special announcement.

2. Nico was announced on Facebook with the classic black and white ultrasound photo. BLANQI had just launched and I had a super active 3 year old to keep up with. There was just no time for fancy anything. Ultrasound photos or videos are simple, easy, gets the point across and never goes out of style- which is especially great for when morning sickness has already set in and the last thing you want to do is peruse Pinterest for more ‘creative’ ideas. 

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3. I found out I was pregnant with #3 Violette around Mother’s Day weekend that year. I announced it on Instagram and posted a photo of me wearing a BLANQI and showing the positive pregnancy test in a pink and blue box and said something like, “I need a BLANQI!!!” This makes me laugh now, as it kinda grosses me out- the whole peeing on a stick, like who really wants to see that, really?! But, it’s still a legit way to announce it and I won’t judge you if you do it too.

4. The fourth baby has you all like, crazy. So crazy me had all this self-inflicted pressure to do this one super cute and witty. I knew this babe was going to get more comments in the announcement post like “don’t you know how that happens” and “whoa..four…”, so I wanted to be sure to share how excited my family was for this new baby! I wore our BLANQI Belly Support Tanktop in Winter White, took my kiddos to Ikea for storage bins and had my sister snap a couple photos of the 3 kiddos and me eating their yummy cinnamon rolls on our way back to our car in the parking lot, and boom…pregnancy announcement posted with “There’s another bun in the oven” ..cute, cute, cute.

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So there’s mine, what’s yours??

If you need some creative ideas, here are some of our favorite pregnancy announcements that have been shared with us at BLANQI!

BLANQI + BABY BOY!! // Of course I’m partial, but I really think wearing a BLANQI is the best way to announce a pregnancy. During the weeks we typically share the news is also when we can feel huge, swollen, sick and tired, not always photo ready. I find our maternity support tanks help make a barely there bump look more pronounced, making the rest of the ‘bumps’ more smoothed out.  BLANQI girl Mekelle Ahlin wore a BLANQI Belly Support Tanktop in Deepest Black when she announced her baby boy news! Love! Love! Love!

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BALLOONS + BABIES!!  // This winning combination has taken baby announcements by storm, with no end in sight. It’s cute and chic, and I love how my real-life sister Natalie of At Home With Natalie incorporated her hubby and kids to be part of it. I think there was some deflating going on with some of the letters, but they pulled it off. Can’t imagine life without baby Asher now that he’s here!! (all 21lbs at 5 months of him! Chunky monkey.)

 

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BLANQI + BABYBUMPS!!! // What better way to announce your pregnant than by saying you just bought a BLANQI!? This had us pretty smitten for both mama and new baby!

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FIT PREGNANCY! // For the fit mama wearing our supportwear, what better than announcing it with a photo from your gym? Christina runs a cross fit studio nearby our office and has amazingly fit pregnancies (who swore by her BLANQI Underbust Belly Support Tank in Winter White) She is such an inspirational and beautiful mom inside and out, that we hope for many more weights lined up in a row for her.

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BLANQI FAMILY! // We are a young company, with a creative, smart, talented team that put their all into BLANQI to help support all women through motherhood. So it’s extremely exciting when the pregnancy announcement comes from one of our very own, like Jessen Schulman!!! Yea!! She leads BLANQI Customer Care, blogs at Jschulmanandcompany.com, is married to a police officer, has a beautiful little girl named Gianna, and you may have seen her in our supportwear videos here. She has a great family that she and her husband gathered up to share the news with! There is nothing like the reactions of family and friends to share in the energy and excitement that having a baby can have!!! I can literally hear the squeals and laughter in these photos!! (Jessen is on the far right holding Gianna wearing her Belly Support Tanktop in Winter White)

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There are soooo many creative and inspiring baby announcements that you can do no wrong!

We would love to see your pregnancy announcements! If it’s your first or your fifth, every baby bump- and after baby body- can use some BLANQI support! Come follow us on Instagram @BLANQIgirls, tag #motherhoodismymuse in your photos, and let us welcome you to the BLANQI world!

xx, Valerie