Personal

Barefoot, Braless, and barely hanging on…

One morning last year during school drop-off for my oldest child I found myself extremely amused by the overall feeling of disarray in my life at that given moment. Disarray actually seems like a kind word for describing my morning drives to the Elementary school and through the car line. I feel like “sucking at life” is probably more accurate. You see, each morning I go to battle. Despite it being the exact same every weekday morning, I am never quite prepared for the brutal pain that lay ahead of me each morning at 6am when my alarm goes off. I know that there will be yelling, whining, and I can guarantee that there will be tears. Whether those are the actions of the child, or myself usually varies from day to day. Getting a 6 year old (now 7) out of bed, fed, dressed, teeth brushed, hair brushed, out the door with her lunch and book bag IS NOT for the faint of heart. It is WAR.

After battle I stagger to my Mom-mobile stinking of morning breath because I prioritized her hygiene over mine for the sake of time. To help set the scene let me paint a picture for you, of what you would see were you to take in my appearance head-to-toe on these morning drives. My hair is disheveled as if it were indicative of the hard fought win, but really it’s because I woke up that way, I’m in some form of mismatched jammies-no bra (my “headlights” are on high beams because, well, they pretty much stay that way), I’ve got an energy drink in one hand, and no shoes on my feet. I look eerily similar to how I looked most mornings 15 years ago, except that I don’t reek of booze and I had way less fun the night before. <sigh> Such is life.

I have a group of girl friends that are all in a video chat group together and most mornings, someone pops on between 7 to 7:30am to start the conversation rolling for the day. The early morning chats are usually between those of us with school-aged kids, and almost always for the purpose of swapping war stories, or entertaining each other with the new level of suckage that we our kids have reached.

Side note: I seriously think that a parent probably never hates their kid more than they do on any given school morning. Maybe on long car rides, but it’s probably a toss-up. 

I’m one of the “lucky” moms in our chat group because I have the shortest drive to the school, about .3 miles. However, being on the PTO board puts me at extremely high risk of someone needing to chat with me at my car. My daughter has also inherited my stellar memory, so she is constantly forgetting her shit that I then have to race home to get and run inside to the front office. For some women these situations would be reason enough to wear real clothes during morning drop-off, or at least throw on a bra, but not me. At seven in the morning I couldn’t give a crap less about stuff like that. My one goal is getting back into my cozy bed as quickly as possible, and things like brushing my teeth, or putting on shoes are only going to slow me down.

As I mentioned, though, I do reflect some mornings, on the train wreck that I resemble and all of the worst possible scenarios that could arise while I am in this condition. It was during one of these moments of reflection while on video chat with my fellow soldiers that I came up with the realization that I was the complete embodiment of a classic country song. A song, that only one of my kind was fit to write. A song that would be called “Barefoot, Braless, and Barely Hanging On”.

The song has a few lines, and I’ve fiddle with a chorus, but it is still a work in progress. I’ll add it to the pile of things I don’t have time to give my full attention to. I have some things I would like to say before my lap top battery runs out, so here goes:

If you made your child cry this morning by brushing their hair…… I see you.

If your child’s hair is in mats and tangles because they chose not to wash it when they showered the night before and you’re pretty sure there are chunks of food in it from breakfast two days ago…… I see you.

If you’d rather your kid’s principal see your saggy boobs, and hard nipples glaring through your pajama top than exert the effort needed to put a bra on….. I see you.

If the breakfast you made for your child was a pack of fruit snacks that they ate in the car on the way to school…… I see you.

If there is a split second each morning that you find yourself wanting to run over the mom that is walking her child into school in a cute outfit and full face of make-up…. I feel you.

6 am, 7am, even 8am (in my opinion) is too early to be held accountable for your actions. Emotions run high that early in the morning, things are said and done that you have to live with… just know, Mama, you. are. not. alone. I SEE YOU, unfortunately so does everyone else in the school parking lot- but don’t worry your messy little head about it for one second. You are the star of your own country song, and the day can only get better from here.

nene

xoxo, Layne

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Fashion

Oh hey, Target!

Did y’all know that Target was having an amazing sale right now? In addition to men’s clothing, movies, and patio furniture – they have also marked down a ton of Home items!

If you’re like me, you’re a sucker for the target Home section!

Tonight I bought the absolute sweetest Rhinoceros cookie jar! Currently it isn’t part of the sale, but my bestie gave me a gift card this weekend, and I just had to have it!

I also found a unicorn piggy bank for my youngest that was on clearance. Santa had brought her one but she accidentally dropped and broke it carrying it up to her room that day.

Right now in addition to great clearance mark downs and cute rhino cookie jars, Target has all lighting and wall decor on sale! There is just a ton of deals right now to take advantage of! Click the image below to shop through my link! xoxo, Layne

*The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.*

Uncategorized

Anna Kate’s Collection

I live in the cutest town right on the border of Georgia and South Carolina, across the river from Augusta which is home to the Masters. I’ve lived in North Augusta, SC for about 8 years now and absolutely love it. In the sweet little downtown area, tucked behind our favorite dance studio, you’ll find Anna Kate’s Collection. AK’s is a darling boutique run by Lesli Bolick, a fellow Southern mama, and friend of mine.

I met Lesli through a fitness class she was teaching (did I mention she is multi-talented). I had purchased from her store before so we would chat often about new items that would be coming in. One day she told me that she was going to be starting a Brand Rep program. I offered my help, not just as a model, but also assisting her with developing the program. In my previous life, which is how I refer to life before being a stay at home mom, I did sales, marketing, and public relations – so I was familiar with a lot of the work that needed to be done. This was my first time being a brand rep, though, and I did not anticipate how much fun it would be! I’m such a girly girl when it comes to fashion, and I’m an expert-level shopper (just ask my budget, wherever it went). Trying on clothes and jewelry multiple times in a week is like having mini girl’s shopping trips! Often there are multiple reps at the store together which is super fun. Even when I’m there alone, Lesli and I have a great time! True story: I always leave something behind. I end up having to race back to the store a few minutes later because I’ve gotten a ways down the road and realized I’m missing whatever it is. Lesli gets a kick out of it.

Reps get to shop at a discount, which is obviously the draw. You can find yourself in trouble, though, when everything is so fabulous that you buy the majority of what you try on! At that point the discount can become irrelevant (I’m sure I put that budget somewhere…)!

Repping for AK’s has helped me with confidence issues that I’ve had in the past, and helped me feel comfortable in my skin. It’s also allowed me to increase my social media presence, and I’ve made a lot of new friends that way. My daughters have also had the opportunity to model for the store a few times, and they loved it! Here are a few of my favorite outfits that I’ve modeled, and a few that are currently in-stock! If you’d like to see all of the cute stuff that Anna Kate’s Collection offers then you should definitely follow them on Instagram-that’s the best way to see their newest items before they go on the website! Don’t forget to use my code:Stalvey10 for 10% off when you shop!

xoxo, Layne

Click this photo to go the AK website!

Uncategorized

Waiting for Happy Mail

I’ve found that there’s always a little bit of a coming down period after celebrations and parties. There’s the warm feeling of happiness from newly made memories mixed with a melancholy emptiness because it’s over.

This is how I feel when the Lilly Pulitzer After Party Sale ends.

This “coming down” period, however, is nothing compared to the anxious, annoyed, desperate yearning that soon takes hold as you wait for your order to arrive. Shoppers are told up front that the wait could be as long as 4-6 weeks, but you’re not thinking about that while you’re shopping! While you load your suitcase (LP’s version of a cart) all you can think about is getting what you want in your size before some other Lilly-wearing beyotch virtually steals it from you.

Me shopping the APS online.

No, it’s not until your order is confirmed, and you’ve concocted your plan for explaining the astronomical charge to your husband, that you have the realization. You might have to wait 4-6 weeks?!?! Oh, the horror!!!

Y’all, every day when I check my mail I have butterflies in my stomach and unintentionally hold my breath as I open the mailbox hoping to see that beautiful hot pink package. Are any of you feeling the way I’m feeling right now?

Were you able to snag all of the things you wanted? I shopped in-store early, but also online. Here’s a sneak peak at some of my scores!

I just love Lilly! Everything is so happy! Today I leave you with some words of wisdom from the queen, herself.

xoxo, Layne

P.S. I hope your happy mail arrives soon!

Fashion

That dress, though.

I’ve already discussed my favorite underwear so it seems like a natural progression to talk about favorite outfits. Sure, I have certain colors I gravitate to, there are brands that I love, and cuts that are flattering, but what about the perfect outfit?

Have you ever found yourself scrolling through your Facebook memories lamenting over how well-rested and thin you used to be, when you scroll to a picture, and think “Dayum. That was a great outfit!”

Maybe you are sitting on your bed watching Below Deck reruns and folding week-old laundry, when suddenly something you see or hear triggers a memory of a night long ago. As you cringe thinking about the poor choices you made that night, you also smile because you remember how banging you looked in that dress, and you weren’t just feeling yourself – everyone else thought so, too.

I have a few that I can think of…

Junior prom. Just typing those words makes me nostalgic. I attended with my high school beau, best friend, and her date. A few months before I had been in Atlanta for my birthday and found the absolute perfect prom dress. It wasn’t a full gown, which was a slight risk. This was the early 2000’s and wearing short dresses to prom was not “in” again yet. She was a chocolate brown chiffon, halter-style dress from BCBG. I wore gold and bronze stilettos, my hair was pinned up perfectly, and my tan was on point. I looked goooood.

Senior prom was an epic dress, too. I had started dating someone after prom dates were asked, so he and I went with other people. My date was a dream boat that I had been crushing on since 8th grade, we were just good buddies, but it was super perfect. It felt like a culmination of sorts – very appropriate given that we were about to graduate. That year the name of the game was Elie Tahari and the color was candy apple red. Ahhh, I just die! She was a full length, sports car red, silk dress with a pleated square neck. She was magical.

In college one night several girlfriends and I were getting ready together to go to a frat party where I knew I’d see an ex. I borrowed my friend, Angela’s, dress to wear. It was just a simple black and white halter sundress, but it was a half size too small, and made my boobs look AH-mazing. My hair curled just right with my Aussie “scrunch” spray (you know exactly what I’m talking about) and my makeup was just right.

(On a side note: I’m excited to see all of the girls in the above picture this weekend! We will be showering the beauty in the middle with her eyes closed, and getting ready to welcome baby girl Wyatt into the world!)

I hope all of you can close your eyes tonight when you are laying in your bed and have sweet, sweet dreams about your most fave outfits, and how FINE you looked in them. Then channel that epic energy, wake up, and be a boss tomorrow as you tackle whatever lies before you! xoxo, Layne

Personal

Netflix and Chill

I remember years ago my grandmother telling me that on Friday nights she and my grandfather would have friends over for cocktails and they would play cards, or dance, drink their alcohol, and chain smoke cigarettes. She made sure I knew that the kids were home while all this was going on. She was a badass.

Growing up, my own parents were “Parrotheads”. If this is an unfamiliar term to you, a Parrothead is the name for die-hard Jimmy Buffet fans. So, my parents spent weekends watching some of Jimmy’s protégés play in dive bars and getting drunk with other middle-aged, Hawaiian shirt clad lushes.

Now that I’m married I feel like I’m socially lacking in comparison to the generations that went before me. The wildest parties we throw involve inviting two other couples over for Game Night, and we’re definitely not waistin’ away again in Margaritaville.

Netflix and Chill is what the kids these days use as code for pretending to watch a movie, but really doing hanky panky. Netflix and Chill is also what my weekend evenings typically consist of with and without the hanky panky part.

Shall I set the scene?

Picture a living room… nice open concept that connects with a beautiful kitchen and breakfast room, built-ins flank a floor-to-ceiling brick fireplace, and double French doors open into a sunroom that’s being used as a playroom. You think, “these people might have nice taste,” but you can’t quite tell with all of the crap laying around everywhere. There are a total of seven different blankets littering the sectional, a child’s sock in the middle of the floor, 3 juice cups (all empty, but not clean) are sitting in different obscure places around the room, you spot a single puzzle piece peeking out from under an oversized upholstered chair, and you’re unsure what the original fabric color was on the swanky high-back dining chairs, because now they’re stain colored. A husband and wife come traipsing down the stairs, just a few minutes apart, after putting their two kiddos to bed, a job in which they divide and conquer. Both collapse onto opposite ends of the blanket-covered couch and turn to face one another. The couple is tired, full of stories from the week that they could share with one another, but don’t because they are simply “over it”, one much more interested in “snuggling” than the other (who knows exactly where that road leads). The air full of tension from things unsaid, and moves not made, the husband whispers those 4 special words, you know the ones, “What should we watch?”

Aaaaaannnddd that’s it! That’s our entire Friday night. Usually we settle on a show pretty quickly and watch a few episodes before he switches the channel over to sports and I retire to a hot bath.

Please tell me that we aren’t the only 32-year-olds that are this lame. Please.

Personal

There are two types of people in this world: the ones who wear real clothes at home, and the ones that strip down the minute they walk through the door and throw on pjs or some other comfy get-up. I, myself, am the second type of person. I don’t trust you if you’re watching TV or folding laundry in jeans – something isn’t right with you. I prioritize comfort, and why shouldn’t I? I’m an adult. I pay taxes. I make sure my kids are fed, clothed, and don’t die. I deserve to be comfortable. I have earned the right to wear ratty, old AF clothes around my house whenever I want-and I want to always.

Here’s the part when I tell you the real topic I’d like to discuss, and it’s not pajamas. If you’re an unmarried man reading this right now, you’re about to be let in on the secret. Most husbands know what I’m about to tell you, even if it hasn’t been discussed out loud. Women across the world know what I’m talking about – whether they’ll admit to it or not. My husband and I discuss it all of the time, rather he tolerates the bizarre amount of time that I enjoy talking about it.

I’m sure by now it’s become clear, but for those of you that are still unsure, here’s the secret. Us ladies? We all have a favorite pair of underwear, and they ain’t pretty.

As a comfort seeker, my desire for physical peace reaches far beyond pajamas and leggings. My lady parts want to be comfortable, too! It wasn’t until a few years ago that I recognized my particular affection for certain undies. One night while getting ready for bed I found myself giddy when I opened my dresser drawer to see that a specific pair of panties sitting there. I knew, in that moment, that I was about to sleep SO GOOD! After that night I began to pay more attention to which underwear I was wearing to bed. There are 4 pair of undies, all from the same original pack, that are my absolute fave. I call them my C-section panties. I got them before I had my first child, who turns eight this year. She wasn’t actually a c-section baby, however, when packing for the hospital I remembered a friend of mine telling me about her husband having to buy her these hideously ugly granny panties after she had her son because she needed something big enough to come up above her incision as not to irritate it. (Thus, the nickname: C-section Panties.) I thought that jumbo undies sounded like a good idea, it was my first kid and I was overpreparing.

Those 4 pair of underwear have been through so much with me. Over 7 years!! They’re practically family, but I don’t want to be dramatic, so I’ll just say that we’re close. When I open my drawer and see one of them waiting for me, clean… soft… falling apart at the seams…I know it’s going to be a great night. I even made up a little jingle about them “🎶I’ve got my C-section pannays🎶” – you’d have to hear it in person to appreciate it.

If my kids are smart they’ll start to pick up on the situation and use it to their advantage. I’m in a far better mood when I have on my CSPs. “What color underwear is Mom wearing?” “The green ones with the bleach stains and hole on the right butt cheek.” “Nice! Let’s ask her if we can get tattoos!!”

I do want to say that none of them actually have holes in them… I’m not an animal. They’re close, but not quite yet.

So ladies, I’ll leave you with this, my wish for women everywhere: I hope you’re able to wear your favorite undies tonight, you know the ones. xoxo, Layne

Fitness

You Can’t Sit with Us!!

Anyone else struggling with the after affects of holiday binge eating, or is it just me? For some reason this year I really let loose with my eating – specifically sweets, especially baked goods. I get it, “overweight” is subjective and every body is different – however, this body is the heaviest it has been since coming off of a pregnancy. So this lady has gotta get busy and get her butt moving. Leggings are my uniform right now.

I have a very restrictive diet because of health issues. Believe it or not, the diet I have to stick to cuts out most of the healthy food I am used to eating. The foods that I’m allowed to eat?? I am allowed to eat: enriched bleached white flour, dairy, sugar, fruit, and most spices/seasonings. Foods that I’m supposed to steer clear of: whole wheat, whole grain, anything similar to quinoa/barley/couscous, no nuts or nut oils, no shellfish, no pineapple, and no leafy greens.

Just take a minute to reread those lists and let it sink in. I’ll admit, I am allowed to eat meat – however, when you’re a mom of two young kids, have anxiety, serve on the PTO board, volunteer at church, and don’t sleep very well, you tell me… Would you rather cook a piece of meat, or unwrap a prepackaged morsel of goodness in the form of cookies, cupcakes, pie, etc.???

Yup, me too.

I started getting out of control over the Summer – I looked hot. I felt comfortable in my bathing suit (more or less) and I decided not to “starve” myself. It wasn’t until Thanksgiving and 10lbs (give or take), that I actually realized how far gone I was. At that point, the cupcake that I was eating whispered in my ear “Just wait… No need to try and quit sweets when the holiday season is only beginning… That would be silly. Reevaluate later. We love you, Layne, eaattt ussss!” So I did what the cupcake told me to.

Now here I am: 10lbs to lose, addicted to sugar, zero self-control, and no will power. Yassss. Recipe for success.

Imma bring this full-circle and explain why I just made you read what I’m now referring to as “The Story of my Undoing : A Love Letter to Cupcakes”. I’ve started trying to diet, cleanse, fast, walk the dog daily, go to the gym, all the things… and if you find yourself in my position and need someone for support, I’m your huckleberry. Let’s suffer…I mean succeed together! Stay strong, Ladies. xoxo, Layne

Personal

They call me Boss Lady…

Ok, so not everyone calls me that, but they should. Despite everything pointing to the contrary I stand by the notion that this is my world and everyone else is just living in it. I’m the Boss Lay-day (imagine me saying that like Snoop Dogg would) and I’m in charge! My husband, kids, the rude lady at Walmart customer service, and all of the dumbass drivers that won’t get out of my way don’t seem to recognize my authority, but they will… Oh, they will.

It’s probably hard to believe, but I’m a total control freak. Type-A to the core. I want to know what’s going on at all times, and I want to be the one in charge- it’s a character flaw, and I’m not proud of it. This “Bossness” gets me into all sorts of trouble; I volunteer for way too much, have horrible anxiety, resting bitch face, and occasionally I can rub people the wrong way. I’ll be honest, I’m a bitch, but one with a heart of gold, I tell ya! I just want what every gal wants: a loving husband that doesn’t over-scrutinize my spending, children that always listen, loyal friends, and total absolute control. Is that too much to ask???

My life is way more PTO mom than Victoria Beckham, but I’m working on tipping the scales in the other direction. I love shopping, especially for clothes. Over the past six months I’ve been enjoying representing a local boutique through social media, and I’m thrilled to share with y’all a ton of new opportunities that I’ve recently been given! This blog will accompany my insta and Facebook accounts as an outlet for me to share my love of fashion, tell you about great deals, let you take a peek inside my brain, and share some of my hilarious thoughts about life. Oh, did I mention that I’m super funny?

Uggghhhh… Y’all, who am I kidding? I’m a total hot mess, but my promise to you is this: if nothing else, if you follow me – I’ll be entertaining AF.

xoxo, Layne