I did a Q&A on my Instagram last week, but couldn’t get to every question. I pulled a few more to answer in a blog post.
Q&A: TIPS FOR FIRST TIME HOMEBUYERS, MATERNITY LEAVE, and HOW I COME UP WITH BLOG CONTENT
How will maternity leave work for you?
This is a great question… I’m going in with an open mind and putting no pressure on myself one way or another. I’m taking June pretty easy and July will likely be spent gearing up for a leave of some sort. (I also have a huge launch happening in November that I want to get ahead on planning since I don’t know what life with a baby will look like.) I will probably go lighter on posting (i.e. posting when I feel up for it) leading up to the birth, then taking true time off, and slowly ramping back up when I feel ready.
While I don’t have a traditional maternity leave, I feel eternally grateful for a fully flexible job and be in a financial position where I don’t have to worry about returning to work right away. Mike has a great paternity leave through his job and we are both so happy he will be able to spend time at home as we transition as a family.
What book are you currently reading?
Any tips for first time and young homebuyers?
This is a great question. Unfortunately, this is currently a seller’s market. My biggest advice right now is that I would probably wait to buy a house until the market cools at least a little bit, unless you absolutely had to. When we bought our house, we knew it wasn’t going to be a forever home and we also knew we were making a safe investment (and would save money versus renting even if we decided to sell five years later). The town we purchased has always been in high demand and our particular house has great features that make it a safe investment– like being walking distance to town, the schools, not being the best/biggest house on the block, etc.
One thing I’d keep in mind now is that if there are updates you want to do to a house, make sure they’re updates that would add value to a house. Renovating perfectly fine kitchen and bathrooms just because they don’t match your aesthetic doesn’t actually add value to the house, but buying a home that needs updates would benefit from kitchen and bathroom updates and you’d be able to make it your own.
Speaking from personal experience alone, I am so happy we waited for the perfect first home versus rushing to buy one just to buy one. It was stressful timing-wise and trust wise. But looking back at all the other homes we were looking at, I know we made the right decision! Buying a house is a HUGE deal and can be a great thing if done wisely and can be a source of financial stress if not done well.
Any home decor choices you made that you now regret now that baby is coming?
On the topic of houses….
This is going to sound so cheesy, but now that we are fully prepping for baby’s arrival, it feels like the house had been missing a nursery all along. Originally when we purchased the house, I thought for sure that I’d turn what was my office into the nursery and keep the guest room a guest room. I also had yet to do a single thing to the guest room (it was a mess of old furniture just thrown together). When we got pregnant, Mike and I both started to think about the bedroom configuration. And the more we thought about it, the more sense it made to turn the guest room into a nursery and the office into a proper guest room with a desk for me.
Once I started making the moves to make the switch happen, I realized how much sense it made and everything fell into place. Somehow the office/guest room feels bigger than before? And the now-nursery feels so spacious and lovely. I’m so glad I hadn’t rushed into anything!
Names you love but won’t be using?
One of my very favorite girl names is Greer! But it does NOT work with Riordan (pronounced “rear-din”)… I hope someone who reads the blog gets inspired to use it though, it’s so cute!!
What should I wear for getting ready for the morning of my wedding?
How do you come up with new blog content?
Right now I have a great “schedule” that I stick to and that REALLY helps me stay on track of coming up with new content. I always post what I read at the end of the month, every Tuesday I do a weekly outfit round up, every Friday I do a link round up, every other Saturday I do a product round up or a Diary post with iPhone pictures… so that leaves Sunday, Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Plus I do one or two styled outfit posts. Sticking to this schedule has alleviated a lot of the pressure I put on myself. I love having a post every day and I keep a running list of things I want to share on my phone. I rely heavily on my life for inspiration!
Do you and Mike agree on politics and social justice topics completely?
On big, important “deal breaker” things we are pretty much aligned. But I wouldn’t say we agree completely across the board. We both are very opinionated and we both come to the table with different perspectives. We have, how would I put it, lively conversations often sharing our opinions and it’s usually because we don’t fully agree with the other’s position. The biggest thing is that we both respect each other’s opinion; it’s rarely about being right and more about being heard and understood in our house, if that makes sense.
I also think having differing opinions on things is not only okay, but a good thing. We certainly don’t have an echo chamber.
Are you comfortable being mask free everywhere now?
Sort of. If masks are optional, I opt to not wear one because I’m fully vaccinated and we have no un-vaccinated children. But if they’re required, I obviously don’t mind throwing one on. I do think the guidelines are very confusing now. And I always try to scan the doors of businesses before I step inside just to make sure I’m not being an asshole walking in without a mask if they’re required.
Trying to conceive, any tips? Did you change anything or do anything to help?
I think this has been kind of a taboo topic, but I’m so happy more people are sharing their fertility experiences– the good, the bad, the ugly, the challenging. I know my friends and I have been having much more candid conversations about it.
I’m prefacing this by saying I’m not a doctor and conceiving is quite complicated– there are many factors at play. Just sharing my own experience here. I personally fell into the “more information the better” camp, long before I was even ready to start trying. I wanted to know my options early because I knew eventually I wanted to have a family. (Which I also want to add that I firmly believe families come in all shapes and sizes. And grow in all kinds of ways.)
I used Modern Fertility a couple of times in my twenties and I’m really glad I did. A lot of women find out about their own fertility and reproductive systems when they’re trying for a baby; and Modern Fertility’s philosophy is that you can (if you want) find out a some helpful information before you want to try…. just to weigh your options. I was able to bring my results to my doctor to discuss my options. This might be stressful for some people, but I found it empowering.
Next to that, I used cheap ovulation strips, which kind of blew my mind because I didn’t realize how much difference there was between when I actually ovulated and when the period tracking app I use predicted ovulation. Even if you’re not trying to conceive, I think it’s relevant information to know… especially if you’re actively not interested in getting pregnant. (Again, I’m team “more information.”)