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Fashion

Maternity, Cats and Goodbye Guest Room

Emily_Henderson_Maternity_Outfit

Welcome to the last of the ’25 week’ maternity fashion posts. I’ll be taking a round of new ones (thanks for the encouragement) next week where I’ll be 31 1/2 weeks. Yes, I’m counting 1/2 weeks, and I’ll look WILDLY more pregnant than I did for this round. You know how I know I’m taking new maternity fashion photos? Because my credit card was declined all day after I was up from 4am to, well, NOW, because little sweet Charlie REALLY wants me to sleep in his room with him (due to us doing it for 3 weeks while we were traveling). I rocked him for what felt like hours and then could not go back to sleep, so I shopped online for 2 hours in the middle of the night because (as I told myself) ‘I have new fashion photos next week’. No, Citibank, it’s not stolen. I’m simply sleep-and-blog-content deprived. Stay tuned.

Meanwhile this is an outfit that is so comfortable I call it my ‘hospital gowns for everyone’ outfit. I’m actually shocked that non-pregnant women buy it and can pull it off, which I’ve seen happen with my own eyes.

Fashionable_Maternity

Can we talk about Bear for a second? 2014 was a rough year for her what with the large love eclipse that was sir Charles. All the talk is true – it doesn’t matter how obsessed with your animals you are, a baby just becomes your number 1 the second they breathe their first breath. But I really still do love her soooo much and she has been so amazing with Charlie – truly the most tolerant and sweet cat in the world. Now General Meow (Mimi) is a different story…that cat is less into babies than I’d like her to be.

By the way if you have cats and are worried about them with your infant, I was too and it was FINE. They generally are terrified of babies (probably because they are terrifying) and once Bear got over her fear of him she was cuddling with us up on the bed and purring so loudly we were worried it would wake him. Point being – maybe not all cats or dogs are kid friendly and adapt well to an infant situation, but some of them can. So don’t give up hope. In fact (and you know this) pets are just so good for kids, even babies, for the obvious reasons as well as they have also been shown to prevent allergies to animals.

Pretty_Maternity_Clothes

Finally, friends, say goodbye to that guest room that I’m so actively fake styling. The bed is still in there (and will remain until the new guest room in our old office is ready) but otherwise the new wallpaper is up as you may have seen from my sneak peek on Instagram, ready for the new baby. What wallpaper you ask? This one. And it’s soooooooooooooo good. See the full former guest room in all its glory HERE, and see the new baby room design plan.

sweet_cat_Emily_Henderson

Back to my love of that cat. I love you, Bear. I’m sorry that we haven’t paid as much attention to you as we used to before Charlie, and I’m sorry that this next year may be tricky but we will try to give you so much love and attention I promise. You truly are the best cat in the world, despite the fact that you cuddle so hard it’s actually a problem at times. For those of you who are wondering What about Mimi? Don’t worry, Mimi doesn’t read the blog. She won’t know. Unless I wake up dead tomorrow and then you know she found out about this post about Bearcat and finally carried out the plan she’s had the last 10 years to get rid of me so she can have Brian all to herself (I write as I lock my bedroom door).

Go get a cat and then get this look if you are into it:

Get_The_Look_05

The key to this outfit? Pop that collar and wear a cute vintage hat that distracts from the fact that you are wearing a shapeless (and therefore SOOO COMFORTABLE) cotton dress.

1. Striped Sweater | 2. Bowler Har | 3. Shirtdress | 4. Necklace | 5. Shoes

* Photos by Stephanie Todaro. Want more maternity fashion? Check out my Muu Muu style, my ‘Play Outfit’,  ‘The One Where I Hold A Piano‘ and ‘The Work Outfit’. Also last time I was pregnant I wrote this ‘Maternity Must-Haves‘ post which I need to update, but its still pretty relevant. Lastly if you want to watch the birth of Charlie (yes, you read that correctly) go HERE.

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  1. I have been wondering about your cats for a *long* time! You used to talk about them so much!

    1. Ditto! I have been wondering how they have been doing with Charlie and would love more details about whether or not (and/or how) you keep them out of his play areas and bedroom and whether you leave them alone with Charlie. Also, where do you keep your litter box? Is it kept separate from where Charlie can get into it? I have a small apartment and feel like litter ends up a lot of places and worry about what to do when I eventually I have a baby crawling on the floor. I guess I will just have to get more crazy about cleaning.

      1. I have two cats, a small apartment and a baby. It’s funny actually. You start being totally worried about litter on the floor, the cat/baby toys not being mixed up… The first time your baby lies on the floor and licks it you almost die and then you gradually start being ok with it. So what if she licks the floor/cat toys. It hopefully helps her develop a healthy immune system and I can’t take everything out of her hands. It’s not that I like it, I just can’t help it if it happens every once in a while.
        Also, our litter box is in the hallway and yes, our daughter may have eaten a crumb (as she has with the cat food), but we taught her from the beginning that she isn’t to play at the door or open it and she never has, so saying “no” actually worked there (and I’m pretty sure part of the reason is, that we don’t say “no” to everything else).
        You just learn to deal with the dirt and as soon as kids go outside and on the playground you can’t help it anyway…
        Best, Sarah

        1. Thanks! That sounds like me: at first “you almost die and then you gradually start being ok with it.” Our current litter box doesn’t have a door, but I will consider it.

      2. We do not have kids either but recently bought a super fancy litter box that is about the best thing ever. Get ready for some sticker shock, but it automatically cleans the box 7-minutes after the cats have used it and puts the dirty litter in a giant trash area underneath. AND, it does not break or smell bad (unlike about all the others). Between this and the roomba (used and old) that we set to go clean every morning, there is almost never any litter on the floor and no cleaning from me!!!! Worth the splurge.

        http://www.amazon.com/Litter-Robot-Automatic-Self-Cleaning-Beige/dp/B000LJDLKG

        1. Wow, that is some major sticker shock. If I can get a free trial though, I might do it (I saw in some of the reviews that people had done that).

          1. The Cat Genie is even more amazing: http://www.amazon.com/CatGenie-Self-Washing-Flushing-Cat/dp/B008JGIYVE/ref=sr_1_1?s=pet-supplies&ie=UTF8&qid=1440599564&sr=1-1&keywords=cat+genie
            We’ve had one for 5 years and I will never use another litter box! You don’t even have to deal with used litter!! It just goes in the toilet or out the washing machine drain hookup. It’s pretty much the best thing ever invented.

  2. We have three cats and a 1 year old. The boys are all ‘oh shit, the kid is coming, scatter!’ but our little girl just loves the abuse. Our 1 year old loves to chase her and maul her in the sweetest way. It’s only fitting that his first word was ‘meow’. Cats and babies are the best and I love showing our friends that aren’t exactly cat lovers how sweet and patient they can be. It also feels good to prove to my MIL that there was zero reason to get rid of them like she not-so-subtly suggested we do when we were pregnant. As for the concern that the cats will smother infants in their sleep – the only time a cat jumped into the crib was to go after a bug that had gotten in there while the baby was sleeping! We were very happy watching that go down on the monitor once we realized what was going on.

    Also – you are beginning to really sell me on these crop tops that I was not a huge fan of several fashion posts ago! Love seeing pictures of Bear and hearing about General Meow again!

  3. I actually bought that hospital gown dress myself. I am not pregnant, but I need to lose so much weight since I had my baby a few months ago. It just won’t budge until I stop nursing. Until then I just want to wear the dress equivalent of a snuggie. I still don’t know if I have the balls to wear it out though. I did purchase two other madewell tops that you rec’d on here because they are as good for the post partum period as they are for pregnancy!

    Maybe in the next life I can be one of those ladies that is a stick 2 minutes after delivery!

  4. Em, I would love to hear how you deal with litter boxes, cat smells, and potential damage from scratching. My daughter Lulu desperately wants a cat and I can’t get over my litterbox/smell phobia, and the fear that my beloved furniture will be ripped to shreds. Help?

    1. I fostered kitties for a while in a one bedroom apartment and immediately had to find an alternative to clay litter. The dust wafted through the entire apartment and made the whole place smell of litter box. A friend recommended I use a Tidy Cats breeze litter box and I cannot recommend it to enough people now.

      It doesn’t use traditional litter, so no tracking or clay dust to worry about. Instead it’s a diaper-like pad under a plastic grid. Some pellets sit on top of the grid to catch poo and the liquids filter through the grid and get trapped in the pad. If you have one kitty, you just have to change out the pad once a week and the pellets once a month. I just scooped the poo off the top whenever I was in the bathroom and most of the pellets get left behind. The poo smells a bit for a short while, but you have to get pretty close to tell, and you can take care of it easily instead of having to do the entire box like a traditional litter box.

      I didn’t have trouble training my foster kitties to use it. I just took a poo from their old litter box and put it in the new one so they would know what it was for and they caught on in a snap.

      It’s amazing.

      The furniture, on the other hand, is more of a chore. Cats can be trained, though. I used a squirt bottle and would give them a quick spray when they went for the furniture. There are also furniture-safe sticky paper that cats don’t like the feeling of that you can add to the corners they gravitate towards. I also draped a towel over the edges so they couldn’t use it effectively.

      The best way to avoid it is to make sure they have their own furniture they can scratch on so they don’t use yours, so a good, tall-ish scratching post that has a solid, non-tippable base is a must-have. You can sprinkle some cat nip on it to encourage them. Don’t try to “teach” them to scratch it by grabbing their arms and doing it for them. They won’t appreciate that.

      If you do get cats, please please don’t de-claw them just to protect your furniture. If that would be your resolution, you probably shouldn’t get cats at all. Most people don’t know, but declawing is incredibly inhumane. It doesn’t just take the claw off. Instead, they cut off the end of each of the cat’s toes. It is equivalent to someone snipping off the last bone on each of your fingers so, as you can imagine, it’s really awful. Cats that have been declawed are often so traumatized that they become very hard to deal with. They have pain walking, they resort to biting to defend themselves, they may take to peeing on things you don’t want them to. So please don’t consider that to be an option.

      There are claw caps you can put over the cat’s nails that makes them duller, and some vets can put those on the cat for you. But clawing is healthy for cats. It helps them stretch out their shoulder muscles and they need to do it, so like I said, the best thing is to get them a post that is theirs so they don’t feel the need to use the couch.

      And if all else fails, volunteering at a shelter is a really good way to get your cat fix without having the commitment of cats at home. Some shelters require volunteers be older than 16, but there are a lot of shelters with programs for children. My shelter has a program where kids come in and read stories to the cats, which helps the kids with reading confidence and also gives the cats socialization and loves, which makes their stay at the shelter less stressful.

      Good luck with your decision!

      1. the Tidy Cat Breeze cat box is the best thing that has ever happened. in the entire universe.

  5. Let me start off by saying you’re adorable and you usually have a great fashion sense. But for the love of Bearcat, enough with the hat. It is not as cute or fashionable as you seem to think it is. You mainly look like you didn’t wash your hair and want to hide it. If that’s the case, please, just rock a top knot like the rest of us.

    Has really no one told you this yet? Your friends are being way too kind.

    1. No!!! I love the hat. If it was a baseball hat or something, I would see your point. But seriously, its good fashion and not everyone can pull off this hat but Emily can. I have to disagree.

    2. I have to second that. Big props to Emily for all that you do, and for kicking it stand-up style in your posts but…that hat.

    3. I think bowlers, pork pies, and similar narrow-brimmed hats (including the smaller-brimmed fedoras that are all over the place) are just not flattering on very many people. Even people as as you are, Emily!

      1. she looks fabulous, and i was attributing it, in part, to her beauty and the hat…i think it looks casually chic since her fit is more laid back.

        i’ve never found emily’s look in fashion or home, to be “trying to hard” and that seems like a very difficult feat to achieve when you work as hard as she does.

    4. Did she ask if you liked it.
      This is why the Internet sucks. Don’t be rude.

    5. its a fact, the hat- not so adorbs.

  6. I swear the first five years with kids is a killer because there are so many changes, job, house, bedrooms, etc. And reading about you in ‘real time’ go through all this is nice because my life is the same and it helps me to embrace it all So thank you for all your sharing. And I was just up with a ‘2 year old’ for 3 hours last night and I feel your pain.

    P.S. My guest room just recently became a play room, so just fyi, that’s probably in your future. 🙂

  7. I love your outfit! Thanks so much for posting the links. It’s also a great mom outfit. I always wear loose dresses now that I have 2 small kids! I also dog that floral pillowcase.
    Anna of The Analog House
    http://theanaloghouse.blogspot.com

  8. Ack! I mean I dig that floral pillowcase!

    1. I’m loving the red embroidered one too….

      1. It’s too awesome for words.

    2. I love both those pillowcases and the one in front as well. Would love to know where they are from!

  9. Need to have a link for your lippy (lipstick) please.

  10. Hi, It’s Tuan Anh from Viet Nam.

    We are a visualization and design team that want to cooperate with Mrs. Emily Henderson. How can I get in touch? Please email me if you are interested. My address is: tuananh.vu@icu.com.vn

    I’ll send you our portfolios.

    Kind regards,

  11. Ya know, I tried on that dress as a not-pregnant 19-year-old and loved it, but at the same time thought, “Man, this would be a great maternity dress!” I’m so glad that my thoughts were correct; it looks awesome on you! I’m pretty bummed I didn’t actually buy it, now!

  12. I know the kids are your first love now, but that cat of yours.. too stinking cute!

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent
    http://thekentuckygent.com

  13. Emily, who is the artist that made that painting??? I love it! I have to do all my shopping on the Internet because I love in the middle of nowhere.

    1. I second the request to know the painter! (I’ve been admiring that painting for a while…)

      1. I third this! I’ve been admiring that painting since you first did the original guest room post.

    2. It’s probably vintage. But could be from Etsy. I’m gonna guess vintage though.

      1. Someone thought they new the artists in a comments many posts ago, but Emiky doesn’t know. Vintage.

  14. Totally off topic, can you please do an update on how you are using your closet space in your bedroom? Did it actually help you stay organize and save space? I’m about to take the plunge on doing my walk through closest and want some reassurance that its worth the $$.

    Thanks!

  15. I love this hat, it is so personal and original like all vintage items. http://dorisleslieblau.com/vintage-rugs

  16. Love the “general love eclipse” comment! Our dog is dealing with our six month old who is OBSESSED with her. She is constantly lunging at her and grabbing her and trying to crawl to her and… Yeah. As the baby gets more mobile, I think this dog’s life is about to get a lot more exciting!

  17. The hat is great! Totally quirky and interesting like you!! You made it big because of uniqueness, don’t ever forget that.

    1. ^^ yes, what she said.

  18. very sweet post! I would have to put myself in the no bowler camp. Actually I think it’s cool, but it doesn’t fit you very well and sits too high IMO. But you are still adorable and I still love you!

    1. Oh, and I have to say, you couldn’t have looked any better in your BHG feature!!

  19. I just watched your pregnancy & birth video. I am currently pregnant with baby number 2. And I’m crying watching your video…hormones!! 🙂
    Love the part where you said not sure how parents with multiple kids can love them each so much…we know they can and must but because this amount of love has been so surprising and overwhelming it’s a bit hard to conceive. I’ve thought that myself as I adjust to planning for the second.
    And yes those sleep setbacks, aren’t they grand. Going through one ourselves now. There is light at the end of the tunnel though.

  20. Emily-

    You are beautiful and awesome. Wear whatever makes you happy. I am so excited about your new addition. Charlie is adorable and you are so blessed. Thanks for your inspiration and your blog!

  21. this is a look i would have never considered…..but today, i went and tried it, and i LOVE it!
    you are so mulit-talented and us readers are so lucky!

  22. I love how you layer shirts over dresses! I never think to do that!

    Paige
    http://thehappyflammily.com

  23. Ha! Our cats are the same… The little girl, Chibi, is OBSESSED with my husband and only sees me as something to cuddle when said husband is not around. The boy cat, Chuu, on the other hand cuddles within an inch of your life. We have actually looked up the amount of weight a human neck can hold since he tries to fit his entire body under our chins while we sleep. He is 14 pounds.

  24. How are the kitties liking their PawNosh bowls? I hope you’re still getting good use from them! 🙂

  25. Speaking of cats, if you haven’t seen this video, it’s a must see for baby and cat lovers!

    http://www.today.com/pets/adorable-baby-head-over-heels-love-family-cat-t39706

  26. As a fellow-cat owner, what do you do about the eyesore that is the litterbox? I love my cats but have never been able to find a permanent and less unsightly option/location in the house!

  27. Hey Emily, it all looks great! Just wondering, how did you make the decision about whether or not the kiddos would share a room? It’s something I think of often, just wondering about the pros and cons in your head.

  28. “Unless I wake up dead tomorrow and then you know she found out about this post about Bearcat and finally carried out the plan she’s had the last 10 years to get rid of me so she can have Brian all to herself (I write as I lock my bedroom door).”

    HAHAHAHAHAHA! This is priceless!

  29. If that redwork pillow (or pillow case, can’t tell) on the bed you’re almost convincingly styling doesn’t make its way back into the guest room, please can you private message me before you put it on Flea? Thanks.

  30. Emily
    I just love reading your blog. You are a great designer and even greater writer. So creative – I love your wit, sense of humor and the little glimpses of your life.