As most of you know, I’m about to deliver my second babygirl! I’m 5 weeks away and super anxious. Kat is almost 3 so I feel like I’ve forgotten what it’s like with an infant and nervous, as excited! I am definitely “bigger” this time around and the Dr. even confirmed that babygirl #2 is going to be bigger as well. With that said, I’ve been a bit uncomfortable while trying to look my best. I get a lot of questions about where I buy some of my maternity outfits, so I figured I’ll put together a list and attach some links for you. I have pieces I’ve been wearing since Kat & some new pieces. With below items, or something similar, you will be set! I promise.
Oversized Dress Shirts
This is a subject that constantly comes up with other moms in my community and I get questioned on it all the time. The fact that my 2 year old is bi-lingual doesn't make her special or different than other kids in her age group; however, I did want to share some insight on what I believe contributed to it.
My husband initially insisted we only spoke Armenian to her so that she can learn our language fluently. He had heard about my cousins kid who stuttered for a long time until they realized they need to focus on one language at the time. Every child is different and has different needs and I have to start by saying there is no "standard". David's concern, when she was 2, was that she was not talking; I understood his concerned but I also knew that every child has their own time and why are we freaking out in advance?? I knew she was not talking because she was trying to learn both Armenian and English at the same time and it was going to take longer than the perceived "norm". But I also knew that it was easier for her to learn the languages now, while she’s absorbing everything, than later. For me, it was important she learned English just as well as our Native language because after all we are in America. I know she’s too young for me to be concerned about her academics, but I don't want her to struggle from the start. I wanted to prep her to at least understand enough to have a somewhat easier time in school with her teacher and friends. This also translated when I started taking her to swimming and/or ballet; understanding what authority was telling her. This is not to say you should be concerned if they’re not talking past 2; every child has their own time and learning mechanism. Be patient and be persistent! Here are the top 4 factors I feel contributed to her being bilingual at a young age:
1. Repeat everything you say in one launguage, then the other. For example, if she pointed to an apple, I would say “apple” in both English and Armenian over and over again (this was before her even knowing how to talk). I would do this with EVERYTHING; “good morning” “are you hungry” “do you want to play”, everything.
2. Keep your sentences short. Don’t baby talk them but don’t talk to them as though they’re an adult either. “Turn off light” vs. “Can you please turn off the light”. They absorb your words quicker and understand better when you keep it short.
3. Let them watch TV. I know, this is usually not the best advise lol; however, they learn so much from just watching their favorite shows! I made sure to put educational shows such as Elmo and Word Party vs. nonsense cartoons - so that helped!
4. Read to them. Kat loves reading! Better yet, me reading to her. However, I have to give my babysitter so much credit! She reads to her in Armenian and makes sure she uses all the "correct" Armenian terms vs. my slang at times. Whoever is fluent in reading your native language should spend some quality time reading to her.
5. Speak to each other (significant other, family member) in both Armenian and English in front of your toddler. They are little sponges with the craziest memories. Whatever they hear, they record - the good, the bad & the ugly!
Self-care is translated and interpreted in many ways. Some see self-care as doing things for oneself on a daily basis, some see it as a treat and it may be something as simple as taking a bath to decluttering your closet. Here are some things I like to do to treat myself every chance I get. I hope they help! What are some of your Self-Care essentials?
1. Bathe - seems like such a simple concept but yet so difficult for us to make time for. It somehow seems like “work” to fill up a bath tub but all we’re doing is just laying in there and doing absolutely nothing. If we can just dedicate 1 night a week, it can do so much for our body and soul! Otherwise, my showers last no more than 5 minutes on the daily! Add some Epsom salts or oils to help relax your muscles.
2. Skincare - this is something I make time for every evening! It only takes 5-10 minutes and I really feel as though I’m doing something for myself (besides the obvious). Figure out a process and make it a habit if you can; do it daily, weekly or whatever you prefer to help you get in a routine.
3. Spend time alone - Don’t be afraid to be alone, your mind will keep you busy. It’s very rare I have alone time because of work, family, friends and a toddler keeping me busy. I’m not the mom who ever asks or feels the need for “me” time, but every so often when she’s in school, I’ll go shopping alone, or sit at a coffee shop or just come home and work from home and so on. We all need a little alone-ness for our mental health.
4. Indulge - My biggest enjoyment when it comes to indulging is wine; obviously not so much lately since my pregnancy; but I like to enjoy a glass of wine every so often in the evenings. Wine helps me unwind and disconnect. What do you enjoy the most? Indulge as often as you can allow yourself without feeling guilty. We deserve it!
5. Spiritual Health - this can be anything from reading to yoga to meditating. I have to say this is probably the most important of all. We all need to work on our spiritual health on the regular in order to keep our mind healthy and positive. I personally love reading self-help books and listening to podcasts.
6. Walk - When I say walk, I mean walk to no where. Usually, when waljjngX we have a destination. With that said, normally racing, pacing and having to get somewhere by a certain amount of time. Go outside and walk around your block, several blocks if you can - and just really enjoy the process, the air, the experience and just collect your thoughts. Your mind and body will thank you.
7. Vitamins - I debated weather “eating healthy” should be this sub-category but that’s a whole blog post and commitment of its own. If eating healthy/healthier is something you always have on your mind, make a schedule and start somewhere: breakfast/lunch or dinner. For me, I do my best on all times of the day but as you know I love to indulge in sweets. However, I try to get all my vitamins in in a day and if I haven’t, my vitamins are an essential part of my diet.
8. Bake/Cook - I know this seems like more of a chore; but I’m sure there’s something you’ve been wanting to make or experience. Enjoy the process and not on a day when you have guests coming over. Cake/bake something just because and enjoy it yourself or with your significant other! Being in the kitchen is really therapeutic, I promise!
9. Music - This is thee most easiest, effortless and probably most therapeutic! I love having music on in my house when I’m cooking, hanging out with my little girl, working or just applying makeup. Music will set the tone and put you in a good mood. Of course, find music that’s uplifting!
10. Stretch - I didn’t realize how important stretching was until I got pregnant and realized how limited I am. After months of not stretching (I just didn’t think about it; I just stopped doing yoga) - my body now feels the need to stretch at least a good 5 minutes every morning! It’s good for your body and it adds a little gap between jumping out of bed and brushing your teeth. It slows down your morning just a tad bit and helps you start a calmer morning.
“But I don’t want to change my life”, you say. In no way am I going to assume that you want to/need to, nor am I implying I was “unhappy” before I applied these habits to my life. However, creating healthy habits will always create a more positive MINDSET. A positive mindset will help you stay organized, focused and most importantly, mentally healthy. I’ve adopted these habits over the past year and I can’t tell you what a difference it’s made in my life! People always ask me how I handle it all: mom, wife, influencer, business owner - its these habits that help me stay sane & balanced. These habits will make you a better wife, daughter, mother, boss, sister, person! Nobody is perfect; but doesn’t mean we can’t try. Who are we doing it for anyway? Ourselves.
1. Go to Bed Early
I know this seems like a basic one but its going to make a huge difference in your overall health, life & mental well-being. I used to stay up until 1-2am working late because my daughter would be asleep and I had time to focus. After time, I learned that I would wake up drained and was not able to give my 100%. I started sleeping earlier and in turn, waking up earlier fresh and energized to take on the day.
2. Don't Scroll Through Social Media
I can't stress this enough. And I don't mean don't scroll ever, I mean in the mornings when you wake up or before you sleep at night; you need to wake up and end your day in a healthy way. Scrolling on social media is just not stimulating or productive. Wake up, have your coffee, wash up, do what you like to do to get your day started and then scroll.
3. Plan Your Next Days Responsibilities
Each night, before you sleep, make a list of your next days responsibilities and prioritize them. I usually put it I'm the notes section of my phone and delete per line as the task is complete. If there are items you don't get to that day, you are left with your least important items and they can be moved on to the next days list.
4. Stick to Your Self-Care Routine
First and foremost, create a self-care routine if you don't have one already (I'll be posting mine soon), it's really important for your emotional, physical and mental health. Self-care can mean many things to many individuals, it can be something as simple as taking vitamins and drinking plenty water, to working out, to meditating. Figure out what it is that makes you feel good/relaxes you on the daily and stick to it. Your mind and body will thank you.
5. Read Books
I know I sound like a broken record with this one but I swear by it. Find books that inspire you (personally, business, educational) and read a chapter or at least a few pages every night before you sleep. Let it be the last thing you do before you sleep so you can have positive thoughts before you close your day and wake up motivated.
This was something I only recently started doing and I cannot even express what a difference in my life. Physically write out all your goals and wants in your phone or in a journal every night. However, the key is, to write these things as if you already have them and as though you are already there! "I am so grateful to have one of the most successful cosmetic companies in the world."
7. Wake Up Early
Habit number 1 will make this habit a lot easier! Once you kick up a routine for waking up early, it will become a norm. Depending on what time you normally wake up, try to set your alarm an hour earlier than that. I know how dreadful this sounds; but I promise you, the amount of stuff you can get done before the day even gets started will set the tone for your day!
8. Declutter Regularly
I feel like I am ALWAYS decluttering. Maybe its because I am buying too much (added to my new years resolution haha) and I am constantly overwhelming my space. When my atmosphere is cluttered I feel like my life is unorganized. In order to keep my "life" organized, I feel it is really important to be decluttering regularly in order to have a focused mindset. Do one drawer, one pantry, one space at a time.
9. Eat Breakfast
This can fit into #7! Breakfast doesn't have to mean a Continental spread! Boil an egg and smash it with some avocado on toast, have a bagel, make a juice! I like to make quick breakfasts during the week as I usually don't have time to sit around and take my time unfortunately. But it is true, Breakfast is the healthiest meal of the day and it gets your brain working and sets you for your day!
10. Listen to Podcasts
I hardly ever listen to the radio/music in the car anymore (unless its Frozen, Elmo or Paw Patrol thanks to Kat). I religiously listen to podcasts such as Oprah, Joe Rogan, Tony Robbins, etc. Podcasts will be your daily dose of inspiration. It can be something you listen to in the mornings on the way to work or a podcast you can sleep to. It's all about daily reminders!
The holiday’s are the perfect time to spend doing activities with your kids! It’s important to keep them busy during their break from school to keep them from getting bored or misbehaving. You can make this a meaningful holiday season for yourself and the ones you love by planning exciting, interesting things to do! Here are some tips and activities I came up with to keep kids happy and actually enjoy the Holidays! Your kids will appreciate it and it’s a special bonding time with these little ones.
1. Gingerbread House
Building a gingerbread house is always a good time! Not only is it yummy, but it is super fun to decorate! You never know what kind of design to expect with your kids imaginations!
You can never go wrong with baking delicious treats. You can bake treats like snowman cake pops, sugar cookies, hot chocolate cookie cups, cupcakes, peppermint barks, and more!
3. Ice Skating Rink
Ice skating is a great family activity. If your kids are younger, ice skating rinks always have children walkers they can use.
4. Arts and Crafts
Big or small, everyone loves arts & crafts! No one is as enthusiastic about holiday decorating than kids are! There are so many options like decorating ornaments, cotton ball snowmen, decorating gingerbread houses, and so much more!
5. Christmas Lights Trip
Put on some Christmas tunes and drive down the streets! Christmas lights are always exciting for kids and adults. If you are a LA native, Candy Cane Lane is the place to go!
6. Visiting Santa
Visiting Santa is a necessity for the holidays. Its a great memory and helps keep their imaginations and Christmas spirit alive!
7. Christmas Concert
Christmas concerts are super fun! Whether its plays like The Nutcracker or shows like Disney on Ice, your kids will love the live action!
8. Candy Cane Hunt
What better adventure than a candy cane hunt? You can do this anywhere, even your own home! Placing a few Candy Canes around the house and having your kids scavenger for it is probably one of the most fun activities you can get them involved in!
9. Host a Game Night
Christmas break is a perfect time to bring out your favorite board games or games in general. It is best to play all age games so everyone can have a chance to play!
10. Christmas Theme Museum
Pop up museums are becoming extremely popular. During the holiday season, there is a few you can take a trip to. For LA natives, it is Fa La Land. Its funky, cute and keeps the spirit alive! There are many photo taking opportunities as well to get great holiday shots.
Can you believe Christmas is just around the corner?! This year passed by in a blink of an eye, but one of my favorite blog posts is here! I love making and reading about holiday gift guides because with so many presents to purchase, sometimes I get stuck myself on what to buy the people around me. I like to put a wide range of variety in my gift guides from different category items to varying prices and unisex.
Here are some of the things I thought of this year:
Everyone loves cute polaroids! The Instax Mini is the perfect holiday gift for someone who loves taking pictures. This film camera features a handful of shooting mode options to capture the picture creatively.
Get it from Amazon for $118.98.
'Tis the season to shop for candles! I absolutely love candles, I think they are the perfect decorative and scent home accessory. With so many candles in the market, its hard to choose which one to purchase. I have listed some of my personal favorite candle brands below with different price ranges:
Books are always a great gift for the holidays for any book lover! They are inexpensive and easy to wrap. My favorite types of books are self-improvement books, so I’ve scoured my book collection and curated a list of some of my favorite books I’ve read in the past year.
You can never go wrong with a mixology kit! It’s a perfect home gift for someone who loves to host parties and shake up new cocktail recipes. There are so many to choose from but my personal favorite is the Mixology Bartender Kit: 10-Piece Bar Tool Set from Amazon. You have the option to choose from a 2, 4 or 10-piece set which is very convenient if you do not want to buy the whole set.
Get it from Amazon for $62.87.
A little different from a portable charger, a wireless charging pad you no longer need to plug a cable into your smartphone to charge it. Its as easy as placing the mat on a tabletop and placing your phone on top and your phone charges instantly.
Get it from PowrCo for $79.95.
What more can you ask for on the holidays than a soft plush cozy blanket? I have so many blankets but nothing beats my UGG blanket! It's a living room essential with its perfect minimalistic aesthetic and coziness.
Get it from UGG for $98.00.
Blood Type eating habits? It’s a thing! Everyone’s blood type reacts differently todifferent environments, foods, drinks, workouts, etc.
After my friend Shushan introduced me to the app Blood Group Diet, I couldn’t help but download it and see what it was all about. To my surprise, everything on the app completely made sense! This app will tell you which foods, drinks and workouts are most beneficial, neutral and what to avoid according to your blood type. Funny enough, as I was looking through them, most the foods it said to avoid, I personally avoid! First, you need to figure out which blood type you are - once you know, click on that blood group and check out the different intake categories.
As most of you know, I hate seafood; I don’t know why, it just disgusts me, always has. In the app, it says to avoid so much seafood! In fact, in the eggs department, everything was beneficial/neutral and the one thing it said to avoid was fish eggs! How funny is that right?
Another thing that stood out to me was Orange Juice; my body cannot handle it. I guess your body knows what is beneficial for it and what isn’t and we just need to listen to it. Now everything on the list wasn’t obvious to me because there are a lot of things I like, it says to avoid, but it’s definitely something to think about! I noticed a lot of people are now doing this type of “diet” and they feel great.
What are your thoughts? If you try it out, let me know how you like it and how it works/has worked for you in the comments below!
Here are the sales I’m taking advantage this year! Some are first time buys, some are repeat, some are friends who have amazing deals that I love to support and some are just “buy it because it’s on sale, why not?!” I didn’t list makeup because well, I’ll list every single brand I know as they’re all having sales; including ELCIE, lol yay! Hope you find this list helpful:
This is the FIRST on my list! Not that I’m a huge Victoria’s Secret fan but the deals are freakin awesome! All sleepwear is buy one get one FREE! You better believe I stocked up on some pjs for gifts - they’re so cute! AND online, you get free shipping & a free tote bag after a $75 spend. In store, I got the softest plush robe I had seen on my friend Renita and it was $38 down from $65! AND I got a free blanky and bag. These deals were too good not to take advantage of.
I’ve never ordered from this website but it came up in my feed, sponsored. So hey! Those paid ads do work sometimes. I haven’t been wearing polish since I got pregnant because I don’t want to do gel during this time and regular polish lasts 2 minutes on me. I saw this Ad with the chicest polish packaging that’s 8 toxins free and is supposed to last 10 days! I got the neutral set as it was all my favorite shades but they have a nice matte dark collection too. $45 for 10 polishes? Such a great gift!
My girlfriend Angie sent me her flyer for Cyber Monday and I couldn’t believe it. For those of you who don’t know, I LIVE in her clothes. Super comfortable, cute, fun & sometimes quirky! She is offering 35% OFF all regular priced items and all clearance items are $7. $7!!! Girl...you can buy all your holiday gifts in one click. Use code: CyberMonday
This girl is a friend of mine for years and for years I’ve been repping her stuff! I am on her website on the regular picking out clothes I want or need and I’ll nag her to bring them to me. I just love the styles, chic-ness, price and quality! Anyone can always find something on this site! She has 30% OFF entire site plus FREE SHIPPING! Use code: MINE
I don’t normally wear jewelry. The type of jewelry I do wear is the kind I wear on the daily, simplicity. Suzy’s been a friend of mine for a while but her some of her items have been key pieces in my daily wear and gifting for the Holidays for years now! Starting from her bicycle bracelets to her Armenian alphabet necklaces. One of my favorite pieces from her line are the bullets and makes a great gift for both men and women - you can’t go wrong! Beat part? She’s having the biggest sale ever: up to 80% OFF! Stock up not only for the Holidays but everyone’s birthday throughout the year - seriously!
If I have to pick ONE store out of all the stores ever to shop for anything; it’s Anthro. I love their clothing, home decor, kitchen accessories, evening wear - I mean everything! I WAIT for sales at Anthro because I can always find something for myself or if I want to get a gift. They are having 30% OFF everything plus FREE SHIPPING on order $100 or more. Stock up on their candles, cheese platters, mugs and throws!
We all have so much to be thankful for. Even on our lowest days, even when things seem like they're going downhill, even when it feels like it can't get worse; we ALL have have something to be thankful for. It is important to remind yourself everyday, and not just today, of your blessings. And although it's tough to see and accept that sometimes, just know that you are protected. Once you have accepted that and feel confident in your being, so many beautiful things will come your way. To be thankful for our lives, the air we breathe, the clothes on our back, the roof over our heads, the health of our family is something we should never take for granted. Be truly thankful for the life you have and watch your life unfold effortlessly. And when I say "truly", I mean, say it out loud, write it down, say it to yourself repeatedly, believe it and don't you let yourself forget it.
I, personally, am thankful for all this on the daily; but on this special day, I just want to say THANK YOU. Thank you to every single person who has supported me for every little thing on my journey. The overabundance of love and happiness I received from all of you on our 2nd baby's announcement last month had me so thankful and emotional, I can't even explain. You have not just supported my career, my brand; but my personal milestones. You have been there for me during times you wouldn't even know. I don't know how to repay you for how much you have helped me get to where I am. May God give YOU the same love & support from your close ones and peers, 10-fold! I love you guys so much. Happy Thanksgiving!
I can’t even express my excitement for this feature! I did several interviews when I was in Dubai, but never did I think it would be a 4 page spread in Hello Magazine! What a dream!!!