Our Week in Pictures + What I’m Loving

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve had a chance to post any personal pictures. We’ve been crazy busy lately, but, fortunately, I think we might have a week or two of rest ahead of us before the chaos of back to school starts up and then moving just a couple of months after that!

The end of July is a fun time for us, since it’s our anniversary and my birthday. This year was extra special because we celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary and my 30th.

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MY LATEST VIDEOS
MY LATEST VIDEOS

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Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been up to my elbows in portrait photography. Which has been a blast, and I’m so glad for the opportunity to develop those skills… but it is exhausting. And hot! Taking outdoor photos is no joke in the North Carolina summertime. 😎

Here are some of my favorites from my recent shoots:

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I did my first wedding just last night! The venue was perfect, the bride was gorgeous, and the setup was absolutely lovely. I’ve barely scraped the surface editing these, but this is one of the first photos I’ve worked on from the shoot:

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Annnnnnnnnnd, my favorite of all the recent shoots– my brand new baby nephew! 😍❤️😍❤️

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I just want to eat his little cheeks for breakfast! And that little button nose. I could snuggle him all day if they’d let me…

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I’ve also been teaching Emma how to use my camera some, which has been a lot of fun! She took that top picture of me and Chris, she took a photo of the ice cream we made together (below), and I let her take a photo of the wedding cake last night. She’s a natural!

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The house is coming along pretty quickly. Just last Sunday I snapped a pic of the freshly poured foundation, and just a couple of days later I went out there to find the framing going up! We’ve been taking drinks and treats out to the workers as often as we can, and it’s been fun watching the progress of the house.

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The kids and I have been checking things off our summer bucket list in rapid fire succession now that summer is almost over! We’ve had a water balloon fight, dyed t-shirts, made s’mores, written letters, gone on a scavenger hunt, made ice cream in a bag, and played with lots of bubbles…

Summer Schedule

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Whew! I’m sure I’m still missing a few things. But all that will have to do for this week :)

 

What I’m Loving

This week, the What I’m Loving section has to be all about Stitch Fix! Months ago I scheduled a box to arrive the week of my birthday so that I’d have something pretty to wear for my anniversary and birthday. And this box did not disappoint– it’s been my favorite one so far!

Here’s what was inside:

Lydea Knit Midi Dress

I’d say this dress was my favorite item, but the truth is that I’ll probably say that about everything that was in the box! I LOVE everything about this dress. I’m obsessed with stripes and navy blue, and I love the pop of surprise pattern in the split. It’s incredibly comfortable and easy to move around in, and I’m just as happy to wear it at home with the kids as I am to go out on a date or wear it to church.

I’m all about comfort and versatility (and wash-ability!) when it comes to my wardrobe, and this one easily checks off all the boxes.

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Quince Cut Out Detail Blouse

I adore the way this shirt fits… and I don’t say that about many of my clothes. It’s flowy and forgiving without looking frumpy or too casual. Somehow it manages to be form fitting and feminine but loose enough that it’s super comfortable and doesn’t have me tugging at the hem the whole time.

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Juliane Knit Maxi Dress

When I told my stylist that I was still struggling to lose the weight I gained while I was pregnant last year, and that I really wanted some CUTE loose-fitting clothes that made me feel good, she TOTALLY delivered. In her note included with the clothes, she said, “Flowy and effortless was the name of the game!” Amen sista!

I felt like this dress was exactly everything I had asked her for. It’s light enough to wear in the summer time, flowy enough to be comfortable, and the cinched waist makes it feminine and pretty. I wore it to the wedding I photographed last night, and it was perfect– nice looking enough for a wedding, but gave me all the comfort I needed to run around and bend over and get in all those weird positions you get in when shooting photos.

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Sharin Beaded Sandal

Last, but not least! I fell in love with these Steve Madden sandals. I asked for a pair of sandals that could pull double duty (just like the rest of my wardrobe). I needed comfy enough for everyday wear running around town, but something that would be nice enough to wear to church.

I was also secretly looking for something that was a little unique, different than what I could pick up on a trip to Target.

Once again– my stylist totally delivered.

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(There was one more shirt in the box that I kept, but we didn’t get around to photographing it.)

 

I’ve always loved Stitch Fix. In fact, I wrote a whole post about WHY I love them here (with all the details on how it works, what it costs, and how to pay for your boxes with their sweet affiliate program). But I have to say that this particular box really increased my respect and appreciation for the talent of their stylists and the quality of the clothes. Here’s why…

Since early on in my pregnancy with CJ, my body has been extremely difficult to dress. I gained A LOT of weight in my first trimester thanks to (of course) my sweet tooth and cravings for Ramen. But then I actually KEPT that weight on after I had the baby. There have been a variety of factors influencing my weight since pregnancy, some within my control and some not, but that’s a story for another day. The important part to THIS story is that shopping for clothes has not been fun in a while. Which is sad, because I actually do love clothes.

I made an interesting observation a few months ago…. during this period of time when clothes shopping (and clothes wearing, for that matter) have not been so fun, I have found myself reaching for my Stitch Fix pieces again and again as they have been the most flattering, comfortable, and nice looking articles of clothing in my closet. Even when I’m overweight! They have literally fit me through thick and thin, and I still love them even as fashions have changed.

So I thought… why not order another box?? Maybe I can’t find anything in the stores that fit me the way I like, but if I told a Stitch Fix stylist what I’m trying work around.. maybe they could help?

I’m so glad I did! Maybe I’m being a bit dramatic here, but Margaret’s picks for me were like an answer to a prayer. It’s amazing the difference I feel in having FIVE new pieces of clothing that all fit well and look nice. Best birthday and anniversary gift I could have given myself 😄.

If you’ve ever thought about ordering a Stitch Fix box, seriously JUST DO IT! I don’t think you’ll regret it. And even if you do, the most it would cost you is the $20 styling fee to send the box. You don’t have to purchase anything inside if you don’t want to.

So anyway. That’s my soapbox for this week :)

Don’t forget— I wrote a post with all sorts of Stitch Fix FAQ’s right here! And if you decide to order, I would love it if you used my affiliate link to sign up: https://www.stitchfix.com/referral/3125085. (I explain all about their really great referral program in that FAQ post, so be sure to check it out).

 

Have a great week everyone! XOXO

Ashton Swank

Ashton is the owner and author of Something Swanky. Although first and foremost a wife and mother, she considers herself an online entrepreneur, freelance writer and photographer, and brand ambassador. Her focus is in food styling, food photography and recipe development.