Friday, October 21, 2016

How to Style a Swing Dress

Swing dresses are very comfortable, flowy, fun dresses that can be dressed up or down. But sometimes it's easy to get in a style rut, so here are five different ways to style them! Great news, I think this popular swing dress from Cents of Style works great for pregnant ladies too (& it's available ins SEVENTEEN COLORS say what?! So you are sure to find the perfect color or five just right for you)! I think I'll be able to wear this dress well into my pregnancy, which is super exciting! Finding dresses that work while pregnant can be a definite challenge.

First look is super simple and works for casual and occasions you need to dress nice, but not be formal. For pregnant ladies, a think to medium belt worn above the bump with color matching earrings and shoes does wonders. These are actually Crocs! I absolutely love them, so comfy and versatile! If you aren't pregnant, a thick belt worn at the waist could be super cute.


For a more casual look, throw on a sweater, coordinating shoes, and a pair of big earrings (I just got these at Target last week and am already in love!) and this faux marble necklace! How fun is this?!

Or throw on some chunky jewelry in complimentary colors and keep warm this winter in your ankle boots!

Can we just think ahead to Christmas for a minute? (I won't tell, promise!) Stay warm with some tights and tall boots, knot the bottom of the dress, throw on a sparkly necklace and earrings! (I'm wearing clear snowmen earrings here I thrifted). 

Or go for a retro look! This works perfectly for that. I put on a long scarf with a 20s style bucket hat. No necklace and short silver earrings. I was wearing tights with my aforementioned Crocs. 

So there you have it! How do you style your swing dress?

PS - that huge stack of dresses? It's not even all the color options!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

My Great Baby Manual Breast Pump (Review)

I was given one of these My Great Baby Manual Breast Pumps to review. Unfortunately, I was never able to use it - the white piece inside the bottle that provides the vacuum for you to be able to pump was defective. There was no split in it for the milk to come through! I think I like the idea of the silicone sleeve that fits over the flange to give a more personalized fit/tighter suction, but obviously I never got a chance to find out. My huge concern is actually that even if the product I received hadn't been defective, I wouldn't be able to use this pump. The reason is the flange. I won't fit in it. I need a larger option, which they don't provide. And the flange is one piece with what screws into the baby bottle so it's an assembly replacement, not just a flange replacement.

Further, I usually use Medela pumps and bottles, but I have also used Ameda pumps. And I have used Medela, Ameda, Parent's Choice, and other bottles (basically, whatever is cheapest) - all of these have screwed into my pump assembly for manual and electric pumps. This bottle's mouth is too wide. Basically, that means I could ONLY use the bottle that came with this to pump into. I guess I'd then have to pour into one of my other bottles for storage and use with the Calma nipple I use from Medela. Yes, My Great Baby does provide a nipple that fits, but I only use the Calma because it is designed to be more like the mother's breast (the baby has to work to get any food) and it makes for an easier transition from bottle to breast and back.

Something else I noticed is that my Medela manual pump allows, like their electric one, for a fast letdown cycle before getting into the deeper pumping. My Great Baby's model does not have that feature. They should look into incorporating it, because sometimes that letdown feature is essential for me.

I do like that this manual pump comes apart for easy cleaning. I think it would be easier to clean after a pumping session than my Medela manual pump, but I don't know for sure.

Personally, I wouldn't, and haven't used the breast storage bags that come with this. There's no markings for ounces, and nothing to make me think these bags are sterilized or freezer safe for breast milk. I'm not saying they aren't, but there is nothing that makes me think they are anything but a cheap freebie to throw in and make people think they're getting more for their money. I don't even like the Medela bags for freezer storage - they leak! Bags with one seal just don't work very well from my experience. Lanisoh are the exclusive breast milk storage bags I use.

The breast pads included with this bundle from My Great Baby are ok, not the best, but I also don't have heavy leakage right now so I can't comment on them too much. My favorite reusable pads are from Walmart (can't remember the brand right now!). For disposable pads my favorite are from Lansinoh.

The thing that intrigues me most about this My Great Baby pump is the silicone flange sleeve. I haven't seen that on other models, and I think it would stop the "burping" or "gas" that sometimes happens when pumping. In spite of that feature, though, there are several changes that would need to happen before I could recommend this product.

I was provided the bundle from My Great Baby for free in exchange for my honest opinion, which I have given.