a botanical nursery for eulalie

 I wanted to take a moment to share a few photos from Eulalie's sweet and simple botanical nursery.  We're moving out of our three bedroom rental in less than a month, so I thought I'd better share it now before the packing frenzy begins! When I found out I was expecting a girl, I couldn't help but collect a handful of special pieces for her room (even though we had everything we needed already!).  What can I say...I'm a planner...and I have a love for planning baby-related things.  Espeially if those baby-related things are girl things :).

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I bought the cheapest (but still cute of course!) crib I could source  happens to be the famous Ikea one that I'm sure you've seen before.  Everything else was basically thrifted, gifted, or re-purposed pieces from other areas in our home.  Saving money on the big ticket items freed up space to invest in some baby gear upgrades that we didn't have with Pier.  I found that shelf while antiquing with my mom in Zionsville when she was in town.   The botanical artwork was also a thrift find (!!!) and it made my flower-loving heart burst.

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Her nursery is my favorite place in the house.  I spent countless weeks leading up to her birth just sitting in that room gazing at the tiny girl clothes and got lost daydreaming about meeting her -- Will she have my eyes?  Brad's curls?  Will Pier learn to adjust to his new big brother title? What will her personality be like?  Now that she's here, I can't imagine a world without her in it.  I've loved discovering her personality and memorizing every yummy thigh roll and kissing those droopy baby cheeks (so delightfully accented by a cinched bonnet am I right).    

It was a genuine joy to be able to plan and organize a space for our little Eulalie Rose.  It's filled with sweet, sentimental details that make me smile and gives me a sense of calm amidst the crazy.  Hope you enjoyed this small glimpse into our home!  Now onto designing her new room in our Louisiana house...


Here's a list of sources if you're curious about a particular item:

CRIB | ikea
DRESSER | thrifted
CRIB SHEET | aden + anais
BLANKETS | garbo + friends, fog + linen, amazon
 DIAPER CHANGER | amazon
BASKET | pottery barn
STUFFED ANIMALS | maileg, hazel village
FRECKLED BUD VASE | freckledpottery 
TROLLY BASKET | olliella 
ROCKER | a thrift find given to me by a friend!
ARTWORK | thrifted
SHELF | thrifted 
BED QUILT | anthropologie 
PILLOWS | pottery barn (no longer available), similar
SPICE RACKS | ikea
NEEDLEPOINT NAME | etsy
BUNNY TOY | shop bitte
MIRROR | thrifted

 


ethical fashion | "who made my clothes?" and giveaway with margu design

Who made my clothes?

You've probably seen this question floating around social media for Fashion Revolution Week in memory of the five year anniversary of the Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh.  This week educates consumers on the perils of fast fashion.  Particularly how it endangers lives, destroys the environment, and perpetuates a cycle for western consumers to buy more, more, more.

Despite my efforts to purchase ethically made garments, I personally still have a lot of clothing that I have no idea who made. The tag that you find itching the back of my neck on my favorite Old Navy sweater gives me all the information I'll ever know about who made it. The writing on a tiny, insignificant tag states simple three words: "Made in China" -- three words we American consumers are all too familiar with.  But, where in China was it made?  Who sourced the fabric, buttons, and thread? Was the person who made this sweater paid a fair wage? 

I can talk for days about why this matters, but that is not going to be today's post.  The post today aims to get you thinking about some of those hard questions.  Questions not just reserved for fashion, but can be applied to other aspects of consumerism (like do you really need a pretty new pour over coffee maker when the one you already have works perfectly fine?).  We don't buy things when we want them...we buy new things when other options fail.  To shop with an ethical mindset, we're learning how to be resourceful. We use what we have, then borrow, swap, thrift, and make before resorting to buying. And when we do buy things, we buy better. 

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Am I perfect at this? Gonna answer that one with a big fat NOPE.  I love buying pretty new things. But the more I learn from my mistakes and dust myself off from impulsive buying pitfalls, the better I am at curbing my consuming in the future. That is why, when I do buy a new piece of clothing, I like to buy garments that have a face behind the label.  When my hand sewn dress has a rip or button missing, I can communicate with the designer to take the steps needed to repair it.  I've found that if the investment pieces bought from sustainable designers are worth buying, then they are worth repairing.  Thus, reducing more consuming.

Today is a very exciting day because I'll be highlighting a remarkable ethical designer who is just as passionate about these questions as I am! Emily DeLong from Margu Design sews classic garments with a playful twist in her tiny Arkansas studio.  Everything from the fabrics she uses to the buttons and trim are sustainably sourced and designed, cut, and sewn by her. 

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I am wearing the Swan Dress in Ornithes Voile -- a fabric inspired by a turn-of-the-century French pattern that Emily designed herself. Isn't that amazing? It is the perfect spring and summer dress, especially if you're attending a summer wedding, or need something special for church on Sunday.  I can't even sew a button, so the fact that she MADE and DESIGNED this beautiful dress leaves me speechless. It is breathtaking -- from the feminine flutter sleeves, to the mother-of-pearl buttons --  the dress exudes lady-like charm.  I find it refreshing to see a woman, so young and talented, running her own business and sewing garments stitch-by-stitch in her own hand. Her mission reminds me of the years before department stores where our grandparents and great-grandparents would spend their money carefully constructing the few dresses they owned.  

Margu Design has been added to the LFW Ethical Fashion Directory, which you can find HERE.  I encourage you to follow her on instagram and visit her website because you will not want to miss out on her beautifully crafted collections. And stay tuned for the giveaway on Friday where you can win a thoughtfully sewed article of clothing from Emily herself!

SHOES | lotta from stockholm
hat | madewell (old)
bracelets | praxis jewelry on etsy
dress c/o Margu Design, which was on loan for me to photograph
and will be sent back to her studio!

our (last) midwest easter

Yesterday we celebrated one of my favorite days of the year -- EASTER -- and my face hurts from smiling as I think back reliving the celebrations.  It was our last Midwest Easter and it didn't disappoint (except, maybe if it was like 20 degrees warmer ;)).  We started out our morning opening Easter baskets filled with candy, new summer toys, and warm weather clothes (and Eulalie's first swimsuit which makes me cry every time I look at it because it's so TINY AND CUUUUUTE).

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Then we attended mass at our parish with our dear friends Carrie + Andrew and their adorable kids Stella Maris, Ophelia, and Des who are around the same ages as our kids.  I providentially met Carrie a few months before moving up to Indianapolis and she totally took me under her wing when I first moved here.  If you know me, you probably have heard me talking about "my super holy friend Carrie" because she is truly a gift to me and I talk about her all the time haha.  As we're coming up on four years of friendship, it's going to be strange not to see them on a weekly basis//extremely difficult to say goodbye to these beautiful people.  You better believe that we've already started planning lots of combined family vacations.  (And Brad and I hope to succeed in convincing them to move down south...)

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Aren't they the cutest?! After mass we had lots of Easter fun at their house with an Easter egg hunt and giant bubble competition outside that was enjoyed by all (it was chilly, but we pretended we were Swedish and tolerated it very impressively).  Stella Maris is five and Pier loves playing with her -- he thinks she is hilarious (she is) and follows her around like a little puppy.  Ophelia is in Pier's class at school, but in typical two year old fashion, they don't really like to interact with one another ha!  Ophelia is the sweetest and she's such a little mama -- she much prefers Eulalie's company and pretends that E is a real life baby doll.  I also tried to sneak two or three photos of Desmond and Eulalie so we can use them in their wedding slide-show one day, but he was playing hard to get #daretodream.

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In continuation of our Indiana Easter traditions, we feasted on yummmayyy farm-to-table fare at Trader's Point Creamery.  It's my favorite place to visit in the spring because the farm is bursting with new life.  I was giddy seeing all the animals and their babies!  Pier kept saying "NOOOOO am-i-na-mals" and "too messyyyyyy" which left me questioning if our move out to the country was a good idea? lolz.

We want to wish you all a very blessed Easter filled with the sacred joy of the Pascal mystery.  Alleluia, He has risen! He has risen indeed! PS. This was our backyard this morning....I miss you flowers.  SPRING ARE YOU LISTENING??! IT'S ME, EMILY. But I guess if it's going to snow in April, it will of course be the most beautiful Narnia snow ever.  

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six 10 minute habits to a better you

Your moments matter.

Think about all the time you've spent watching T.V., scrolling through social media, or reading pointless Buzzfeed articles.  Do you think that's been well spent, or has it left you feeling drained, discontent, and bored?  How much time have we wasted doing those things?  Ten minutes? Twenty?  Or has it robbed you of precious hours, not minutes, of your life?  

Our time on this earth is a gift. We should be spending time doing things that cultivate that gift -- things that bring us joy and encourage our physical and mental well-being.  That's where I came up with these six 10-minute-habit to help us spend our time wisely.   These six habits inspire me to become a better person -- a more present wife and mother and daughter of God.  In order to accomplish this goal, I set aside ten minutes increments in my day to get it all done.  Ten minutes doesn't seem too scary does it?  Some days I have more flexibility than others where I can spend more time in one or more of these areas, but I always always have ten minutes here or there to devote to the things on this list.

I believe you can accomplish anything if you are consistent and persistent in pursuing it.  By committing ourselves to small things each day, it will result in big positive changes over the years if we keep them up. These small yeses to healthy habits are the best kind of #selfcare -- caring for self doesn't just mean bubble baths and chocolates (read THIS article to see just what I mean), but choosing how you spend your time to better your mind, body, and soul.

Your moments matter.

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No.1 | 10 minutes of PRAYER

Of course, prayer always comes first.  Lean into silence, fill your heart with gratitude for another day on earth, and rest with our Lord for at least ten minutes a day (or longer!).  If that seems too uncomfortable, try praying five minutes in the morning and five in the evening.  It helps if this is the first thing you dedicate yourself to each day.  If you are new to prayer, expect some bumps (restlessness, dryness, and distractions are all normal and are all things even saints struggled with!).  You will quickly discover that when committed to this ten minute resolution, the Lord will repay you abundantly.  He will fill your day with such peace and will personally show you how desperately eager He is to pour out grace on receptive hearts.  If God willed us into existence and gave us His son to give us life, the least we can do is give Him ten minutes of our hearts in return.

no. 2 | 10 minutes of movement

Staying consistent with exercise is difficult for this busy mama...as much as I would love to devout an entire hour to a class or a long run, it just doesn't happen as often as I'd like.  You can still get an effective workout in ten minutes. By establishing a goal of getting at least ten minutes a day of exercise I am not only staying on top of my physical health but my mental health as well.  My days become more productive, I have more energy, and I am happier all around whenever I have these few minutes to myself to get my body moving.  My favorite escape is doing a quick Pilates workout with Robin from the Balanced Life, or doing ten minutes dance cardio with my pretend personal trainer Tracy Anderson.  Pier even joins in on the fun and loves to run around in circles while mama does her "x-er-schiz".

no. 3 | 10 minutes of creating

Sneak in ten minutes every day doing something that is life-giving to you.  Whether that is sewing a dress, writing a blog post, baking bread, crafting with your kids, knitting a blanket, or something art related like calligraphy or water coloring -- make time for it! Doing something creative every day gives me a huge boost in my mental wellness.

no. 4 | 10 minutes in nature

In Sweden they have a saying that has quickly become one of my favorite motos: "there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes".  Swedish children spend at least one hour a day outdoors year round, rain or shine.  Isn't that amazing?! It's easy to spend all day outside when the weather is perfect, but when it's too cold or wet or sticky?  Nope.  I wish I was better at it!  It seems like every time it rains or snows I just want to curl up inside with a cup of something warm and a good book.  But spending time outside -- even in yucky weather -- really does make a difference in my day and it makes a huge difference in my children's day as well. Unfortunately, in our culture kids spend more time indoors than out (usually sitting in front of a TV or a video game if we're being honest).  I want to be a parent who is enthusiastic over the beauty of a rainstorm...who isn't afraid to get mud on her clothes...who believes that the backyard is the greatest entertainment there is! It's something I continue to work on, but spending at least ten minutes outside with my children (or sneaking away by myself) is manageable to me.

no. 5 | 10 minutes of reading

I try to either read ten pages or for ten minutes each day, whatever comes first.  I need some type of intellectual stimuli to get me thinking --  thinking is good! -- and reading is the best way for my dusty mom-brain to become less mom-brain-y.  I want to not only be a life-long learner, but I also want to instill a love of learning in my children too.  By making time to read either a spiritual book or a work of fiction, I'm not only bettering my mind but also setting an example for my children to make literature a priority.  

no. 6 | 10 minutes of cleaning

I call this the power clean.  I try to make it as enjoyable as possible by lighting a candle, listening to some music or a podcast, diffusing some essential oils, and if I'm being honest, putting my toddler in front of the iPad so he stays in one spot (ten minutes of Netflix won't ruin him for life guys).  Then I set the timer for ten minutes (or longer if I have the energy) and get to work doing a quick pick up, sweep the kitchen, tackle the dishes, or put away the laundry.  It's just a small dent in the larger mess that is my life but it feels so good once the timer goes off and my house is a bit cleaner than it was before I started.  I feel like I clean all day long...a task that would take me five minutes usually takes me five hours when both the kids are awake and needing me...so I like the ten minute power clean because I can get a lot done in such a concentrated amount of time. 

 

All these totaling up to ONE HOUR out of a daily twenty-four.  That's sparing ten minutes here or there among the chaos of life to check in with your own well-being.  Try it and let me know if you've noticed a difference in your day!

 

life lately

JANUARY  HIGHLIGHT REEL

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1 | Eulalie loves the snow, Pier does not ^.  Lots of snow days means that Eulalie got to experience her first snowfall and I dressed her up in the same winter suit Pier used when he was a baby.  It's been either gloomy cold rain or slushy snow lately, leaving us with lots of days spent indoors.  We are going a bit stir crazy in the Fossier house -- either fighting off illnesses or battling with inclement weather and trying our best to combat cabin fever.  As someone who loves the outdoors, I do my best to make it enticing to get outside even when the weather doesn't cooperate.  However, a certain two year old doesn't like to get messy in the rain or snow so my efforts are usually a bust.  We do lots of art projects and build cities and watch movies...hopefully the sun will be shining too because we are ready for Spring!  February may be the shortest month of the year but it FOR SURE feels like the longest.

2 |  Speaking of illnesses, this month marked my first time getting mastitis.  It wasn't my favorite. 

3 | Also speaking of illnesses, Eulalie got the flu.  That wasn't anyone's favorite.  Seeing the happiest baby in the world become the saddest was hard.  I've never seen a little one so sick, but I'm happy to report that she is all better and back to her smiley self! Praise God in His goodness because I was a wreck worrying about her. 

4 | At the start of January, my mom stayed with us for a few days to help with the kids.  It is always such a gift to have her helping hands and creative mind around.  The house is always full with such joy and silliness whenever she comes!  The kids love playing with her, and I love spending time with my best friend.

5 | Pier and Eulalie began taking a music class once a week in order for us to get out of the house and begin instilling groundwork for future music lessons.  They love it!  Pier especially likes banging on the drums.  We sing songs and do silly dances and the teacher instructs the students in certain tonal patterns and beats.  It's a lot of fun!

6 | Pier and Eulalie love each other (most of the time).  Eulalie's love is unconditional.  Pier's is a bit more unpredictable.  My favorite part of the day is before I put Pier down for his nap...we read books then sing songs as I hold Eulalie and she smiles and giggles at Pier while he's in his crib.  It's so sweet because they love to make each other smile.