All Posts By

Valerie Caron

Day in the life, Giveaway, Motherhood Is My Muse

Lily’s 1st Birthday // Photos + Giveaway!! 

June and January // The playsuit was Goldilocks perfection. I mean, seriously. It was a gold playsuit!!! I can’t rave enough about JJ clothing. Love it allll.

Saurez Bakery // This is a local bakery in Charlotte, NC that makes amazing cakes and cookies. They designed these ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’ sugar cookies that were almost too beautiful to eat, however try telling that to 4 hungry kids. They ate every last delicious crumb.

At Home with Natalie // My sister Natalie throws the best parties, so I couldn’t have pulled this off without her e-party course that I did while drinking Diet Dr. Pepper and in my pajamas. That is my kinda course. #genius

Bright Lab Lights // These are amazing. I want a set in every room of my house, but that might be a bit overkill. These lights are ultra cool and instantly added a festive feel to the party. Modern and easy.

BLANQI // I wore our Highwaist Postpartum + Nursing Support Leggings, because these first ever nursing leggings make breastfeeding a baby easier in public and social settings. I paired with a longer length tunic tee for a put together look that still let me play with the kiddos. #motherhoodismymuse

Be sure to enter the BLANQI Baby’s 1st Birthday Giveaway here!

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Rather than doing a typical ‘smash cake’, I had her have a cookie with her name on it. Being the more feminine and demure baby doll that she is, I felt the smash cake wasn’t going to go over too well anyway. She nibbled her Lily cookie like I expected. 🙂
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Post party nap time.

 

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Before Pregnancy, During and Forever After

Motherhood Is My Muse // BLANQI Girls + Friends Giveaway

Sabina and I are so excited to share this Motherhood Is My Muse Giveaway with you that features some our favorite brand friends of BLANQI. A true friend is someone who makes your life better, and these brands are just that. Motherhood is equally amazing and exhausting, and we need all the support we can get at times! I couldn’t get through some days without the support of my best friend Sabina- and the same could be said for these products in this giveaway!!

Lily is my little side-kick. She would be permanently attached to my hip if I caved in, so the DockaTot has been a lifesaver. She snuggles right up and it’s easy to nurse her to sleep in it. It’s great for traveling (I clip the end of it on the back of our carryon luggage), so she can nap really wherever, whenever.

A certain brand of diapers- that will remain nameless- was picked up by my husband on that weekly trip to the store after realizing at say, 10pm that we had just used the last diaper. (You would think after 4 kids we would have that diaper inventory thing down, but it never fails that we run out at the worst timing.) After using this nameless brand of diapers, I discovered Lily had all these little gel crystals on her bum. Mom panic kicked in. I started researching every diaper company available and discovered Parasol Co.

They are thinner, softer and SAFE diapers. The fashion stylist in me loves the commissioned designs peaking out from under Lily’s dresses (no need for a diaper cover to cover-up the licensed characters) and I like supporting a brand that is run by a busy mom of three. AND this is the no-brainer….they deliver. I can order them online easier than a pizza. You pick out your delivery frequency, choose the size and a pattern…and presto.. diapers arrive at your front door, no midnight hubby run required.

At BLANQI we are all about support. Our line of high-tech style and built-in support styles were designed with real life and real bodies in mind- for before pregnancy, during and forever after. We were inspired by motherhood and how it has influenced our own life, that we designed our Motherhood Is My Muse tunic tee to spread that support with all mothers living that life with us.

I wear it all the time with skinny jeans and our Postpartum + Nursing Highwaist Support Leggings, especially when I know I’m going to have to breastfeed Lily, because it’s loose enough to pull up and nurse easy out in public. But, when I want to elevate my mom style to comfortable and chic, I am obsessed with the tee and tulle skirt look. My 3yo Violette think it’s fun to see me look “fancy”, which is something I want them to have as a memory of their mother as well- that mom doesn’t always have a messy top knot and sneakers on, haha. This peach skirt is from Garderobe, all handmade and so fancyyyy!!!

 

after baby body
From bump to baby, Valerie's Life

Postpartum pressure to not look like you had a baby, just after having a baby. 

This was my postpartum body just after delivering my 4th baby last summer. I posted it on my personal Instagram last year to remind me of how I felt in that moment, when I was filled with amazement, emotion and love for the magical moment I had just experienced as a mother giving birth, so as to resist the urge to feel the postpartum pressure of not looking like I just had a baby, after just having a baby.

 

July 31st, 2015. “You’d think after 4 babies, the mystery and amazement of a woman’s body recovering from childbirth would be old news to me, but it never disappoints. I took this photo at the hospital Wednesday, just 24hours after Lily was born to remind myself that on the day I felt the most beautiful as a woman, the most strong as a mother, the most loved by an adoring husband, my physical body appeared the most out of shape, ‘ugly’ and ‘disfigured’ to worldly standards that it’s ever been. I wish for myself and for my daughters to always remember that true beauty is living in the truth of what beautiful really is. #postpartum #selfiestrong #BLANQIbeauty ” 

 

 

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There can be an expectation that immediately after having a baby, our bodies should instantaneously go back to it’s pre-pregnancy weight. I believe that this pressure is a real thing. Not just a figment of our female imagination, but a real cultural expectation that is placed on mothers.

If you’re not one of those mamas who has ever struggled with this postpartum pressure, it is a wonderful thing that you have lived without it, but I felt it. I felt it after my first baby, when I felt like I had to prove to myself that motherhood was not going to ‘change me’. (hahahaha) I felt it after my second baby, when I felt I had to prove that I could control two boys and still retain my girly self. (hahahhaha) I felt it after my third baby, because clearly I just had my third baby and people expect you to go downhill from there. (hahahaha) But, by my 4th baby, I didn’t feel it. I felt the most secure in my motherhood, my marriage, my life– I felt like I didn’t have anything more to prove with my body. At this point, I made the purposeful decision that postpartum body shaming was not going to influence my thoughts and decisions this time around. Those unknown fears were not going to be what compelled me to make decisions in my life.

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It’s been just over a year since I had Lily and I’m still carrying some postpartum baby weight. I have a fairly flat stomach, but those last 10 pounds seem to hold onto my hips like a kid holding a cookie until I stop nursing. It’s happened every time, so this fourth time around I’ve not stressed over it as much as I have in the past. It doesn’t matter really what I do– eat less, eat more, exercise less or exercise more. Until I stop breastfeeding, there is no pre-pregnancy body coming back.

And in my life now, I’m okay with that. I’m okay with having a little more squeeze if that means my child is still wanting and needing to be breastfed. I feel lucky it’s lasted so long and been so easy this time around. Lily seems to be one of those babes who would prefer to be a lifetime nurser, so having to gently wean her will come soon enough, but I’m just not in any rush.

That doesn’t mean I have days when I don’t look in the mirror and try to remember what my boobs looked like pre-pregnancy when they didn’t need a support bra. Or what my abs looked like with some definition instead of a defined stretch marks or what my bum looked like without these support leggings  for lift. There is nothing like trying to put on a pair of jeans from my pre-kid days of ages ago to get a real dose of reality. I may fit into them, but the ‘fit’ has changed.

So I wanted to share this as a visual reminder that pregnancy changes our bodies. It makes us gain weight, and lose weight, some bellies get stretch marks, while others have them on their chest, butt and hips. Our bodies can get red, rashy, itchy, shot up with progesterone, swollen, sensitive, cut open, torn, ripped, and stressed to the max.

But, with time and support they heal. It doesn’t last forever, and the scars that do were earned for a love that lasts a lifetime.

xx Valerie

postpartum support

Above I’m wearing my BLANQI Highwaist Postpartum + Nursing Support Leggings just after delivering Lily. I packed them in my hospital bag to help secure my belly with just the right amount of compression so that I was still comfortable. I’ve heard about binding your belly tight just after having a baby, but it never felt comfortable and didn’t work to wear for daily life. Like how can you go to Target wearing a bellybinder?! I would rather enjoy the moments with my new babies, than feel like I couldn’t snuggle them up from the tight and constricting binders. I feel like they make breastfeeding difficult to do and enjoy—and it’s challenging enough those first days, so I prefer these first ever, breastfeeding gamechanger support leggings. The higher waistline, on average, sits about 2 inches higher than typical ‘highwaisted’ leggings, so when I lift my shirt up to breastfeed, my jiggly after-baby belly stays secure and covered. Which always helps when the lactation nurse comes by and I’m all falling out of my gown. Having some coverage helps with feeling a bit more normal in a stressful situation when I’ve had challenges with my baby latching on at first! Just my experience. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Valerie's Life, Ways To Wear

Pregnant during the summer // my maternity style

 

There is something about being pregnant in the summer that evokes sympathy from total strangers. This time last year I was pregnant with our 4th baby, Lillian Giselle, due August 15th. Many people would say, “Oh, you must be so hot!” and, “How are you surviving being so huge in this heat?” When pregnant with our first three babes, I had avoided being the hugest while it was the hottest. But this time, I was pregnant during the summer, having an August baby, and I had to figure out a summer maternity style. There comes a point when the heat wins.

That is when I let my BLANQI Belly Support Tanktop go it alone.

Slipped on over my favorite bra and non-maternity skirts or shorts, I felt fresh and sleek. The cooling effect of BLANQI’s moisture-wicking finish works wonders. In the early weeks, I would wear the skirt waistband above my small bump. As weeks went by, I would wear the skirt waistband underneath it. I like to look pregnant, so I love that BLANQI defined my bump and gave me a flattering silhouette. Because the tanktop is opaque, there was no need to cover it up or layer over it. It really could go it alone.

I prefer to wear non-maternity styles I already own in my closet, so the support tanktop worked really well. I could keep wearing my pre-pregnancy skinny jeans and favorite ripped denim shorts with the BLANQI Belly Support Tanktop. The bottom band is designed to secure unbuttoned like a bellyband. It just made things easier to not have to worry about what to wear everyday as my belly grew.

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Here I am with my husband and kids, less than 2 weeks before Lily arrived. Clearly I had entered the “very pregnant” stage! I still can’t believe this was a year ago this week and my belly was that big! I was squeezing myself into maxi dresses since they were just about the only thing that still fit. With lower summer necklines, I needed a support tank that wasn’t visible.

That’s when I opted for the Underbust Belly Support Tank.

I preferred to wear this style in nude underneath my dresses like a slip. The underbust style stayed hidden under my v-neck and scooped summer necklines. Even my most clingy and stretchy maxi dresses flowed freely. My Underbust Belly Support Tank smoothed everything out, including my popped bellybutton, and stayed in place when chasing after my three little beach babes.

Having a summer baby ended up being easier than expected. I drank a lot of water, put my feet up as often as I could, and wore my BLANQI’s day- and night!

xx, Valerie

 

 

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Motherhood Is My Muse, Support, Uncategorized

#motherhoodismymuse // motherhood quotes to kick off your week with.

Sometimes we need a witty motherhood quote…or two…or twenty! The thing about mom life in the summer is that the routine is not the routine. Late night sunsets make for later than first-negotiated-kid-bedtimes.

We pair that with playdates, pool trips and holiday weekends mixed into busy work weeks (all moms are ‘working moms’ , so that includes all the WAHM, SAHM, WM, etc…allllll the acronyms.), makes for some exhausted mamas.

It’s that sweaty season of motherhood where dirty hair, leggings like these, and real life is happening. Where we cry because we are so tired of sassy toddler mouths, and then cry because we realize that our time mothering is flying by and we don’t want to miss a minute.  We cry because the house never seems to stay clean, and then cry because the weight of the world feels heavy on our shoulders as we raise these little people with sticky popsicle stained fingers. We cry because the baby won’t sleep, and then cry because our baby is no longer a baby.

But, sometimes we need a good cry- and a good laugh!

We rounded up some of our favorite motherhood-life-parenting quotes from our Instagram and Facebook  to share with you to help kick off your week! We are obsessed with every motivational, inspirational and relatable quote out there, because this is our life!! Here’s to cry-laughing today!

xx, Valerie & Sabina

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sister room decor inspiration
Decor, Motherhood Is My Muse, Valerie's Life

How to ‘baby proof’ a toddler bedroom for a three’nager.

When I think of baby proofing, I always thought of it as covering the outlets, making sure no hard corners were exposed and picking up every tiny Lego and Playmobil piece was picked up for the baby stage.

But what about for a toddler bedroom, or more appropriately a three’nager?

 

My three’nager Violette, with her enthusiasm for creative play and spontaneous ideas, has created an entirely new level of parenting panic for me.
For starters, after the fourth night in a row of being woken up around 3am by the thud of Violette falling out of her toddler bed, I knew it was time for a change. But, I wasn’t ready to make the investment of two twin beds from here that I’ve been eying, since Lily is still at least a year or more away from being out of her Ouef crib and I’m not sure Violette could handle the added height yet either. I didn’t want to trade one fall for another, higher fall.
So for the time being, I borrowed my sister Natalie’s extra Queen mattress and set it up simply on the floor. While not the most chic, and definitely brought back punk rock memories of my first apartment in Philly haha, it’s practical and functional for now.

By placing it horizontal, it made it more like a toddler sized King bed- and I love that I can lay down next to her at bedtime to read books, even letting Lily crawl around on us.

Then there are windows,

Remember the scene from the sound of music where the kids are swinging from the trees, you know that one? My kids would be the type to recreate that scene if I used anything but spring loaded curtain rods. These are my go-to for toddler rooms. They make it so anytime they start playing and pulling on the curtains, they fall down. Can be annoying to have to put them back up all the time, sure, but it’s worth the hassle to have peace of mind that I’m lowering the risk of them hurting themselves.

Violette inherited my obsession with rearranging decor, so she is constantly touching and moving whatever I put up on her wall. Rather than fearing her artwork getting taped and push pinned randomly into the wall, I found some inexpensive ways to give her just the right amount of control to decorate her space. Target always has the cutest wooden clothespins in the dollar bins up in the front of the store painted in cute colors.
I’m sure you could take it a step further and DIY those yourself, but I’m a bit too impatient for that, haha. I use them to secure the educational alphabet cards from Anthropology just strung across with yarn, from my knitwear design days. The frames are the kind that hold canvases, since those give a perfect little space to hold hanging artwork.

Scroll down for the Before and After. Not much had to change but the bed, for now. (Saving up for those West Elm beauties!)

xx Valerie

Obsessed all books in our house, but especially with Solly Baby’s children’s book about baby wearing. The cutest.

 

This Gathre leather playmat in mint gets dragged by my various children from room to room. Currently it is on my family room flow being used as a wrestling mat by my adventurous boys. Quite the change from the girls’s ballet moves. 🙂

  Pottery Barn does not disappoint. Santa brought the unicorn this year, because what little girl does not need a riding unicorn?? The play kitchen is an older version of what they retail now, a lucky find off Craigslist for Violette’s 3rd birthday.  

And here is the After with the toddler bed replaced with a big girl bed.

  

Before Pregnancy, During and Forever After

The pregnant mom? The breastfeeding mom? // What “type” of BLANQI mom are you?

If you’re like me, you’ve seen the different quiz’s on social media like, “What type of mom are you?” which helps you figure out if you’re more of a granola-hippie mom or the hot-mess-mom, haha. While I’m not sure how accurate they really are, I will say that I think of myself as more of a ‘hybrid-mom’, not really fitting just one mold of mama. I think that as mothers, we can each be a little bit of every type, and that our differences have a lot to do with the specific stage of motherhood we are experiencing, especially once we go beyond the pregnancy experience and into hardcore parenting.

I was recently asked by Erica at Murray & Finn how I would explain the benefits of our Postpartum/Nursing Highwaist Support Leggings to each of the different “types” of BLANQI mamas, and this is what I came up with!

I’m currently 10 months postpartum with my 4th baby, so I definitely was a #1, still feel very much #2+#3, never been a #4 (but never say never I suppose) and always a #5 (I’m a true believer in the fake-it-till-you-make-it mantra of working out! ha)

 

Which “type” of BLANQI mama are you right now?

1. The Pregnant Mom // Our Highwaist Support Leggings should be packed in your hospital bag. Seriously. Do not wait to buy them until after baby arrives, because you are missing out on the major impact these leggings have during those first 6 weeks of postpartum, what is thought of as the 4th Trimester. I wore them after delivering my 4th baby Lily and it was life-changing. I had just survived labor and wanted nothing but to be comfortable and feel pulled together. Jude, Nico and Violette were about to meet their new sister and I wanted to iPhone photograph every second of that special moment without feeling like I was going to look back at the photos and feel like a hot mess. These knocked both things off my list at the same time. No waistband is a lifesaver, as my belly takes some time to go down (as in 9 months postpartum more) and muffin top post-pregnancy is not flattering. They also are a must have for any scheduled, or surprise c sections, so think ahead. Anything that makes me feel more secure with hospital visitors, walking down the hall to grab ice, etc. is a no brainer. (Here is the TMI, so stop reading if you can’t deal. They help hold up the giant pads we have to wear after delivery, which as a hater of pads, this made me feel better about them slipping around and leakage. I know yuck, but it’s the truth)

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(If you are pregnant and are looking for our supportwear leggings specifically for during pregnancy, we also have a maternity support version with our patented built-in support that lifts your belly and eases pregnancy aches and pains. This is what has girls saying they “don’t do pregnancy without a BLANQI”…)

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2. The Breastfeeding Mom // These leggings are a game-changer. I personally can only handle wearing ‘nursing’ clothes for the first 4 weeks or so postpartum. That’s when I’m just trying to adjust to the whole milk surging into my breasts, leaking everywhere, holding a baby and trying not to cry from all the hormones. Haha. After I get into the flow of things, (I just crack myself up, lol) I just want to feel ‘normal’ again, so I tend to pull out my pre-pregnancy clothing and make what I have work. If I’m a real gluten for punishment, which I’ve been 4 times now, I attempt to test out if I fit into my pre-pregnancy jeans, which for 4 times straight has ended in failure. I do not recommend putting yourself through that torture. That’s why these leggings work. The highwaisted design of these leggings keeps things smooth and covering my jelly belly, so I can just lift up my loose-fitting tees and breastfeed inconspicuously. The rise is about 2″ higher than regular high waist leggings, which equals to about 4″ with the seamless stretch. That especially helps with having the curious siblings that want to know if there “is another baby is coming out” since I still look pregnant just after giving birth, thank you wise 5-year-old for those words of encouragement.

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3. The ‘Motherhood Is My Muse’ Mom // We tend to think, or maybe believe, that the post-partum stage ends at like what 6 weeks? 6 months? 18 months? I feel that once I was post-partum, my body was forever post-partum. I can remember crying after my first baby thinking that my body was not the same, but that I didn’t even remember what it used to look like, it was that bad. lol. Okay, maybe not as terrible as I’m making it seem, but nothing prepared me for just the changes that just getting older would have on my body. I feel these leggings help give some self-esteem back to those of us who have suffered the ‘scars’ of motherhood- stretch marks, c-section scars, gained weight, etc. When I wear them I feel snugged up in a way that balances out my love of chocolate chip cookies with my efforts to be pulled together on a daily basis.

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4. The Adoptive Mom // My friend Angela recently adopted her 5th child and traveled all the way to China to pick up her daughter, Rosie. You can read her story here. She wore these leggings 24 hours over to China and 24 hours of travel time back home, with a toddler. Traveling needs to be comfortable, and traveling with kids is anything but, so these leggings helped make at least the getting dressed in the morning part easier. In my experience, my friends who have adopted have often shared how just because they didn’t birth there babes, they didn’t need any less support than the experience than a birth mother would, it’s just different. That is how I feel about BLANQI supporting all mothers through motherhood. We all need support, it’s just about needing different kinds of support at different times in our life.

 

5. The Fit Mom // You live in black leggings. I get it, it’s my life too. I quickly scrolled through my Instagram page and noticed that I have one outfit staple, BLANQI leggings. I can put them on and literally go from preschool drop-off, into a BLANQI design meeting, then the grocery store (since I am the food fairy of our fridge) and finish up at one of my boy’s soccer/lacrosse practice’s without skipping a beat. Then on the weekend’s when I’m not just faking a workout, I put these on along with a crop t-shirt, my favorite Ferry Corsten album blasting on Pandora and actually get my sweat on. These are tight leggings that feel like a second skin. Thicker than a tight, but thinner than typical yoga pants, so they keep everything snug and secure, which is important when on a treadmill.

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So this so much why I believe in the power of these leggings. I wear them everyday and I’m okay with that, ha. If you want more information on these motherhood game changers, like what size you need to try them in, you can find that here.

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Not sure how to style them? Check out this past post from Sabina for more ways to wear these support leggings. 

xx, Valerie

 

 

 

Mother Mentors, Valerie's Life

Motherhood Mentors // Tips to balance work + family life from Stephanie of Wash With Water

These days my life is wake up, kiddos, BLANQI, BLANQI, BLANQI, tackle the mound of laundry, chauffeur to soccer/lacrosse/ballet, dinner, rinse and repeat. I feel sometimes like the days are zooming by and there aren’t enough hours in the day for me to finish everything I want to do- both personally and professionally. One thing that has kept me grounded is connecting with like-minded women who are facing the same challenges everyday as well.

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Meet Stephanie, she is one of those gals. (image above) She is a wife, mama to 3 and the founder of the successful Wash with Water brand of dreamy organic soaps and lotions. We were first introduced through Instagram and I was instantly like, let’s be friends. Not only do we both have daughters named Violet, (I spell my daughter’s like Violette, but it’s practically the same), but we even delivered babies on the exact same day 7 months ago!!! So when I was putting together our BLANQI Baby Bundle with another amazing mama friend, Amy from June and January, and we knew that it had to include WWW, it is that good.


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Baby Vonn wearing the June & January x BLANQI collaboration beanie, onesie & blanket, so darling.

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Our BLANQI ‘Be Brave’ v-neck turned into perfect princess pajama shirt.

 

Recently during one of our late-night texting sessions, while we are both exhaling from a long day and nursing our little babes, I asked her the question that I get all the time, “How do you do it?” I wanted to know what she does to balance her business and motherhood. (Insert whatever ‘work’ you do all day if not an entrepreneur, because every mom is a ‘working mom’) She has this great quote on her website that says “…because we believe bath time is not just another task to check off- it’s family time in your hands!” GAHHH… that really hit my heart hard, because how often do I rush through the tasks of motherhood without really putting motherly love into even the smallest moment?! That is where I can ‘make up’ the moments lost through a busy day of work, kids, cleaning, etc. I get there is no magic formula, but it helps to hear that we are all sharing in the same struggles and suggestions from other mamas in the ‘trenches’ that can help make it easier!

 

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Stephanie living what she preaches with her little ones.

Stephanie, founder of Wash With Water, 4 tips on how to balance work and family life,

TAKE 30 // When you are pouring every espresso-fueled minute of your day into the business, it is easy to forget that the beautiful force behind this creative energy (YOU) needs attention too. Block 30 minutes every day to re-charge, meet for coffee with friends (no business talk allowed), work out, take a nice long bubble bath. Your business (and family) will thank you!

IDENTITY THEFT // It is perfectly understandable after investing your heart, soul, and probably personal finances into this labor of love that you have now wrapped up your identity into the company. And on the days when sales are through the roof, customers are singing your praise, and you are on top of the small business universe…then sure why not? Well simply put because the pendulum will swing the other way once in a while! Your self-esteem cannot afford to ride the roller coaster of small business ups and downs. Protect yourself from the trap of blurring the lines between you and your business by staying connected to people, hobbies and interests outside of work. Remember, being a successful entrepeneur will take everything you’ve got….just not your identity.

LAW OF ATTRACTION // Keep a small journal and action board of your goals for the business- never stop doodling or making daily notes for yourself. These accomplishments may not happen overnight (and certainly not without a LOT of hard work) but start to put the ideas out into the universe. The small business world thrives on the law of attraction- if you dream it, believe it, work for it, you will receive it!

FINISH LINE // It can either be comforting or a bit intimidating to think that there really is no end to this small business journey of yours. Remember, you are not in a race to compete with other companies to a finish line…there isn’t one and this is your personal journey. So take the time to lift others along the way, reach out and ask for help, and most importantly, celebrate the milestone successes for you and your fellow makers. This indie journey is a whole lot more enjoyable if you are sharing it with a community of like-minded movers and shakers.

 

xx, Valerie

 

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

 

BLANQI Baby Bumps

Valerie’s top 5 reasons why you need a maternity BLANQI in your life

There comes a point in every pregnancy where you feel so over it. When you feel huge, swollen, cranky, hot, tired and so ready to meet your new little bambino. Maybe it hits you at week 13 when you can’t button your pants, or week 41 when you’re 5 days overdue, or week 34 when you can no longer bend over to put your shoes on, or week 9 when you’ve been throwing up non-stop for days. You may not be thinking “I need to buy a BLANQI’, as perhaps you do not even know maternity and postpartum supportwear exists, but as being in the midst of my 4th pregnancy, here are my top 5 reasons why you need to pre-plan and buy a BLANQI.

 

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1. Your belly pops sometime in the 1st -2nd trimester and than suddenly nothing fits…usually the exact moment you’re running late for an important work meeting or a last-minute dinner date with friends. Always. Prepare for this moment with a BLANQI on hand and save yourself some tears.

2. You may think you’re huge, and then a couple of weeks will go by, and you’ll think “what was I thinking?!? I’m so very huge now!!” You will think your belly is big and then it gets even bigger..heavier..with aches and pains. Do not underestimate the delusions your mind can make during pregnancy…even after the 2nd, 3rd and 4th baby. (I am guilty of this on a daily basis.)

3. You want to “look pregnant” and not just like you ate too much chips and dip the night before. This sounds superficial, I get it, but it’s true. Early on I want to wear a sign that says “I am pregnant, not fat”, but that is just strange and weird, so I don’t. However, I wear a BLANQI which smooths out my sides, back and hips, which makes my belly look more like a babybump than a burrito bump. (clearly I have a mexican craving today)

4. Time as you know it becomes irrelevant during pregnancy. One minute time seems to fly by so fast that you’re panicking you’re going to get the crib up and hospital bag packed in time, the next minute you’re on the couch devouring a gallon of ice cream crying  that this is never going to end. Sabina and I say it alllll the time, “9 months is too short for a babybump only wardrobe, but way too long to be uncomfortable.”

5. You deserve it. If you’re like us and have a hard time purchasing for yourself, think of it as you’re buying for baby. A less stressed mama makes for a healthy pregnancy. You are growing a life!! A real-life living human who could potentially cure cancer, will learn to speak , become an individual with opinions and ideas, and change the world for the better. Who at only 6 weeks from arriving into your womb had a tiny heart the size of a lentil that beat 150 times per minute, who at 12 weeks has its own set of unique fingerprints, then fast forward that after only 40 weeks, you have a full-sized baby capable of loving you forever as it’s mama. It’s amazing, mind-blowing and emotionally incomprehensible until you’ve experienced it. Why not make it just that much easier on yourself?

 

xo, Valerie // 29 weeks pregnant, and feeling huge, craving mexican and wearing a BLANQI BellyBand at this very moment.

 

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