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Vacation Mode Toggle On

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Last week I did something I’ve never done in the 2.5 years of having my Poshmark closet. I went to my Seller Tools and scheduled my closet to be on Vacation Mode. No sharing, no answering stupid questions (AMEN!), no offer-ing to bikers… nothing but enjoying my time with the people I was with.

It was amazing, stressful, terrifying, relaxing, troubling, refreshing and… well I guess that first word, amazing, is the best word for it all. My current situation is this:

The girls are playing in the play place after we barely made it in time for hash browns (I literally ordered Lucy a biscuit at 10:29 am). I’m sipping on my iced tea and bouncing between writing this blog post and working on my Poshmark closet(s). I said closet(s) because I started a new one and I have ALL THE THINGS I can be doing to help that get up and running.

But man, the past week has been really great not worrying about work. It’s the blessing and curse of working for yourself: you don’t have to ask anyone for time off, but it’s up to you to tell yourself to enjoy your vacation and decide when to clock back in.

Pit stop for coffee with Justen… it’s like Justin, but with an E. or Justine, lol.

We got in at like 2 am, which was crazy. We were exhausted but so glad to be there. There was a huge issue with the rental car when we arrived so we took my mom and her friend Kassie to the airport the next day to get it sorted out. As we were leaving, the girls pointed out that they were hungry – indeed, it was 1:30 and they hadn’t had lunch. I’m going to rock this mom thing, y’all.

We went to Chuy’s where Lucy put her master chef skills to work making a concoction of rice, beans, sour cream and chips.

In no particular order, here are some of the things I got to do while Vacation Mode was toggled on:

Layla did my hair like Rapunzel. I may have lost a bunch of those flower clips, I can’t be completely sure. Also I 100% spilled coffee on that outfit before we even left the house.

We got out of the car and discovered that Lucy had two left feet. I died. She’s also the left handed one, so Lefty Lucy 100%.

It was two summers ago that I started taking my (then) gluten-free, (still) vegetarian friends to Chick-fil-A for breakfast. One of my favorite photos on Instagram is captioned “chick-fil-layla” which evolved into chick-fil-lucy and then a video they sent to my mom where they said chick-fil-linda! My mom loves CFA breakfast as well, so we all finally got to go together.

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chick-fil-layla. i'm literally so proud of thinking of that.

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The biggest draw for this trip (aside from the normal days spent with some of my favorite people) was Ernie’s backer show! We got there a few hours early and decided to go to No Baked, a cookie dough cafe. It was honestly the best edible cookie dough I’ve ever had.

The backer show was so cool. In September, Ernie launched a Kickstarter for his new album, and the kickstarter raised like $56,000! One of the rewards was a backer only show, and people came from all over to be there. I’ve never been in a room of so many Ernie Halter fans. Like check this picture I have from watching Ernie play at a place in Ohio back in 2006:

and then check my view from the backer show:

Towards the end I realized that the girls were sitting on the floor in the front, so I went and joined them. It was so sweaty, I’m 6.5 months pregnant, and when I got up I noticed I’d left this really cute sweaty butt print on the floor. You are welcome, everyone that saw that.

Also, me watching Ernie play in Pennsylvania, 2006:

Layla, watching her dad play in Nashville, 2019:

It was getting way past the girls bedtime and Ernie was taking requests. The girls requested Angel, a song they listen to every night when they go to bed… and the pavlovian response was so real.

Wow, these pictures from my phone in a dark room turned out SO WELL, y’all.

On the way home, we were so tired. The girls fell asleep and we decided to go through the classiest McDonalds of all time. Also it’s amazing to me how quickly my taste/cravings change. Two weeks ago I had McDonalds Mc”Chicken” sandwiches (I’m being so vulnerable right now, this shames me to my core) TWICE for lunch during the week. I ordered one, ate half and then gave it to Justen. Anyway. Back to the girls sleeping and the classy McDonalds…

Only serving Bottle Water. I’m dead.

The next day we went to our friend Collins’ 1st birthday party! It was a pool party and the weather was great and Collins is so cute. Afterwards, Justen and I went to a brewery called Mantra so he could try out some new, local to Nashville beers. I don’t understand the beer thing, but it matters to Justen so it matters to me. I got a root beer which was… root beer-y and pretty good. We played Battleship which was a lifesaver for me because sometimes watching Justen drink beer and log it in his beer drinking app can be boring.

On Monday, Justen’s last day in Nashville,  we dropped Ernie off with some friends and went to 5 Daughters Bakery (SO GOOD! AND SO CUTE!) and then went to Portland Brew right down the street for mochas. I love that the girls are at an age where they can hang. They packed their backpacks with their journals, waters and a puzzle, which occupied them for nearly an hour before we had to leave.

and then… Justen left. and I never imagined I’d be this person, but I literally cried when Justen left. For hours. I’m that person. Not sure if it’s me or my pregnancy hormones, but I cried.

So now my vacation mode is off, even though I’m still out of town. I’m still spending my days with the girls, but I’m back to sharing, offering, answering questions, etc. Grateful for this last little trip to Nashville before our lives drastically change. <3

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How I save money drinking fancy coffee at home

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Martians love their coffee. All day, every day. When we first met, we were constantly going out to coffee and spending all the dollars having mochas and lattes and sometimes free iced coffee refills at Starbucks.

Like anybody who budgets would say, that ADDS UP. It’s like a leak in your budget. On average, I assume I spend $5 every time I get a coffee out somewhere. That is so much money!

Over the winter, Justen and I discovered something that changed the way we coffee at home. We were perusing Goodwill and saw, in a brand new box, something that would change our coffee game forever.  Sitting there, waiting for us to snatch it up and love it, was a Bodum frother. Originally $25, only $10.

We took it home and quickly made it ours, especially in the winter, making milky hot chocolate, mochas and lattes.

If you are looking for a way to save money without sacrificing fancy coffee, look no further.

Here’s the simplest way: just froth your creamer. Pour half a cup of your coffee and then top with the frothy creamer. bada boom, you’ve got yourself a fancy latte!

If you’re looking for a little bit more of a classic latte experience, buy yourself some syrups (we love Monin!) and add a few pumps to a mug, pour with a little coffee, and top with frothed milk of your choice.

Wanting a mocha? Add chocolate sauce to the bottom of your mug. Pump the syrup if desired. Pour some hot coffee, stir the coffee + chocolate while your milk is frothing and then top with milk. IT IS SO SIMPLE.

For us, it was a $10 investment but if something were to ever happen to ours, I’d gladly pay the $25 to replace it. That’s 5 days of Starbucks.

Also full disclosure, I’m writing this post AT A COFFEE SHOP, sipping on the mocha I paid for. Gotta splurge sometimes.

If you’re a fancy coffee drinker, what are some ways you’ve figured out to have fancy coffee at home?

also PS how cute is our little coffee corner? I know one of our bulbs is out. it’s a shame I’m too lazy to replace it.


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Baby Martian // Week 23

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It’s still really funny and kind of weird to me that I’m doing the whole week by week photos of my pregnancy thing.

I’ve been deep into Pinterest trying to find an actual format for pregnancy update blog posts and wouldntchya know… there isn’t one. 🙂 So I guess I’ll just figure out what I want to share and make my own… which is what everyone appears to be doing, hence the lack of actual consistent format.

ps we’re missing an exclamation point but we are excited! the next day as I walked up the stairs to our apartment, I found the ! laying on the ground.. it had fallen off, haha. 

New Things

This past week, Justen and I both felt her kick from the outside. I’d noticed that she was moving around pretty aggressively so I put my hand on the part I was feeling movement and y’all I LOST MY MIND because the next time I felt her inside AND against my hand. So while we sat there watching YouTube videos of the newly opened Star Wars Land, I held Justen’s hand against my stomach until he felt her.

Now I’m obsessed with that and every night I lay in bed trying to feel her. It happened one more time and I got so excited. I have no chill with this baby, y’all. Just look at our fridge. No chill:


Last week I’d gained a pound, making my pregnancy weight gain -6 lbs. This week I’d lost a few ounces, so my pregnancy weight gain is around -6.5 lbs. I know that in a few months that number will go up as I put on literal baby weight, so having the wiggle room to grow a baby and still be within the recommended 10 pound weight gain is comforting. Also, I’m not trying to lose weight. It’s just happening.


In addition to what I believe are normal worries (is she okay? is she still alive? will she be born too early? will I be an okay mom? etc), Justen and I are without insurance for the month of June. The insurance from his last job covered us through May 31st and his new job’s insurance will kick in on July 1st, but I’m hyper aware of everything. As people in my Facebook groups go into early labor, get diagnosed with preeclampsia (which I have a high risk for) or lose their babies, I am fearful that any and all of these might happen to me and I’ll be gun-shy to get help because of a lack of insurance. I can’t wait for July.

Happy Things

They finished fixing the roof in our apartment, which means soon they’ll fix our ceiling and then we can buy a crib. I’ll be sitting next to it sobbing, don’t worry.

I wrote her full name down on a piece of paper for the first time.

Acquired Things

I spend a lot of time in Goodwill, in case ya didn’t know. I’ve been finding some cool things there, so I’ll start sharing what I’ve found. I’ve found boxes of Honest Diapers for $10 each (they’re normally $26!) and a $15 baby blanket we wanted for $4. To say that I’m excited to share is an understatement 🙂

I’m a ball of emotions, and after a really struggly first trimester I’m just so excited to feel so much whole-hearted excitement for this tiny human inside of me that will become a part of our family FOREVER. That’s a long time, lol.

PS our normal picture taking spot had REALLY WEIRD shadows (it was a sunny evening for the first time in forever) so we had to relocate, but look at the past month’s change! I literally had Justen take the picture in different angles because I looked fat. He corrected me and said I actually just look pregnant. 

Baby Martian Week 20
Baby Martian // Week 22

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Baby Martian // Week 22

Shout out to Baby Martian for hitting a huge milestone: homegirl is officially a pound this week, according to the internet.

We missed a photo last week because I was out of town, and then we realized.. if we just skipped week 21, we could actually take a picture of week 22 on the first day of week 22. Prior to getting pregnant, I didn’t realize how you don’t just count months, you count weeks and even DAYS.

Today I was walking and caught my reflection in the mirror and said “oh wow, I actually really look pregnant.” and I’ve noticed that I started doing that thing pregnant women do where they walk around with their hand on top of their stomachs.

Aside from looking rounder, still having less of an appetite, and disturbingly vivid dreams, I’m still experiencing a fairly asymptomatic pregnancy.

Oh. Except. I CANNOT STAND the smell of body gas/fluid/feces/etc. Like if I use a bathroom after someone who pooped like 30 minutes before, I’ll start gagging and want to puke/die/run/etc. Not that I loved the smell of lingering crap, but my body didn’t used to respond like this!

Over the past two weeks, I’ve gained a pound. I’m still down 6 pounds from my first weigh in.

I feel her squirming every so often, more consistently after I eat food. also she got really active while we were watching the new Aladdin the other day.

I wonder what she looks like. Most babies look the exact same to me, but what color will her hair be? Will she have birth marks, and where? Will her ears stick out a lot? Will she have a bunch of little rolls on her legs and arms?

There’s a lot that’s allowing me to be patient. Our bedroom ceiling is still leaking, so we haven’t bought a crib or anything. We’re kind of evaluating if this is the best place for us and our tiny human to live when she gets here. We need to figure that out (we’re working on it!). I’m overwhelmed by the whole stroller/car seat thing (HELP! WHAT IS EASY AND SIMPLE?).

and I’m cherishing the remaining moments of Justen and Stephanie Martian. By the end of the year, we’ll be a party of 3, a family unit that includes a Mr, a Mrs and a baby. We will never experience life just the two of us ever again. I’m cool with that, but I’m just soaking it all in. We learned one another and chose each other and we’re about to add an unknown person to our mix. For the rest of our lives. It’s a lot. It’s really heavy feeling some days.

But I’m grateful for the chance to be patient. I know there will come a point where the crib is set up, the car seat is installed, the bag is packed, and I will be struggling to enjoy the countdown.

The Martians are over here patiently, excitedly and nervously awaiting the invasion of our Baby Martian.

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Seattle, Susan, Spokane, Sunshine

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A few weeks ago, my friend Sarah sent me pictures of her kids. I sat in the coffee drive-thru in near tears because it’s been over a year since I’ve seen them – the longest in like 6 years, at least. Last year they moved to the other side of the state and it’s just never worked out to visit them.

I’d already made plans with my friend Mei-Ling to drive to Seattle to watch The Bachelorette with her, so I sent Justen a text pleading for him to be okay with me tacking a trip to Spokane to see them onto the end of that Seattle trip. God bless Justen Martian, he said absolutely.


The weekend before, he helped me get my oil changed and clean out my car, so Monday I hit the road armed with my favorite 90s boy band Spotify playlist and the cleanest car I’ve had in 2 years, no joke.

Mei-Ling is honestly one of my favorite people in the world. We share a deep love of much of the same music, in this “not many people understand this” kind of love way. When I got to her apartment, we ordered thai food. I watched her bake stuff in an apron (I made sure she wore an apron).

Then we watched the dumpster fire that is The Bachelorette. and her cat Susan kept my computer warm.. and that’s literally the only picture I took from being in Seattle.


I made it to Spokane on Tuesday evening after a minor setback (losing my credit card), but was so excited to see some of my favorite kids IN THE WORLD. Ellen signed this promotional camp postcard she was featured on.

The next morning, we hung out and played Sleeping Queens and Candy Land (I won 3 times in a row before Ellen finally overthrew me as Candy Land champ).

I snuck away for a little bit to meet my friend Sophia (who happens to be their cousin!) for a quick coffee date. We tend to have monthly hours long convos so it was so good to actually be with her.

That night, we went to a band concert at their church. While we waited, we started playing 4 way rock paper scissors with a couple kids from their church. What is 4 way rock paper scissors, you ask? A headache. Everyone freezes their choices and then get points for how many things they trump. I played with them 3 times before I was SO OVER keeping track of the scores in my head.

Hannah asked me to go to the bathroom with her and we snapped what is probably my favorite picture of us #may30 girls. Five years ago, I got one of the best presents in the world when she was born on my birthday. The following year her cousin (who is a good friend of mine) had a baby on May 30. So we’re #may30 birthday buddies.

It was such a quick trip, the next morning was my last day! Sometimes it’s REALLY HARD to have people you love SO SO SO MUCH live far away. I wished there was a tesseract as in A Wrinkle in Time, the fifth dimension, a portal between point A and point B. Or as the book says,

We went to Hello Sugar, which is a made to order donut shop. The cutest little donuts with wonderful flavors topped with a dusting of EDIBLE GLITTER. Ellen knew I’d be so into it, and she was 100% right. They were also into it…

We then walked around the Spokane Riverfront. I’ve been to Spokane with their cousin YEARS (like 10+) ago, but I hardly remember any of it. It’s such a cool city! I texted Justen and told him there’s so much we didn’t get to see, and that he’d probably enjoy a few days there, too.

After parting ways 🙁 I got in my car and began the 5.5 hour drive home. I made it a few hours into a city called Pasco. I thought, “hey.. I’m going to stretch my legs and walk around a Goodwill.”

Something to note:  I’ve donated all but 3 of my purses. 2 are really small (they require a smaller wallet) and the one I’ve been using on the regular I HATE. Last week, a tube of lipstick exploded all over it, so I got rid of it and have just been walking around carrying my stuff (0/10 do not recommend). So I walk into this Goodwill, carrying my phone, wallet and keys. And I found one great thing.. then another.. then another, and then suddenly my arm was cramping and I looked like this:

I made my way to the register, and behind the counter I spied with my little eyes… a really beautiful purse. I asked to see it and knew the treasure I’d spotted. I found a brand new Kate Spade purse, priced at $40 (original price $350). That’s not even the most magic part about it. It perfectly matched my Kate Spade wallet. The material is different, but the color is exact.

They actually had two tote bags of the same color, brand new, for $60. But alas, I had lost my credit card, I was 3.5 hours from home, and my weekly Poshmark payout wouldn’t hit until the next morning. So I gladly paid for my pile of clothes and my brand new Kate Spade purse.

I got in my car, so excited I almost cried, filled up with gas and coffee and then blasted happy music the rest of the drive home.

It was the perfect ending to a perfect few days. I arrived home just in time to shower, sit on the couch for awhile, and go to bed.

Today after work, Justen and I are headed BACK to Seattle for a little weekend getaway. Mostly to see the Mission to the Moon exhibit at the Museum of Flight. After being away for 4 days, I’m happy to go anywhere with Justen because it turns out that home isn’t a place so much as a person. <3

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