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Along Abbey Road | A Lifestyle And Family Blog : May 2013


How To Tell Your Parents You're Having A Baby

On Mother's Day morning, both my mom and mother-in-law opened their gifts and cards to find these little "recipe" booklets. My mom informed me she thought I sent her some gluten-free something or other, and was infinitely more thrilled to see it was in fact a baby we had cooked up. My mother-in-law, on the other hand, is a bit sneaky sneaky and straight up asked if we were having a baby just days before. Naturally, I had to lie to her. I bold-face lied to my mother-in-law! Do you know how stressful that is? I couldn't ruin the Mother's Day surprise, though. This was just too good. What better gift can you give a grandma on the day that celebrates motherhood?

I threw these booklets together on a whim, using the materials I had on hand. In my dreams I had planned out a more professional, artistically designed and ornate book, but who has time for that? I'm not gonna lie, DIY shenanigans and crafting give me a headache just thinking about them at this point. Me, the lover of painting everything and anything I can get my hands on, cringes at the thought of glue guns and making crap. Pregnancy turns me into a different person (a crazy and waaayyy too emotional person, but we'll talk about that another day).

Anyway, this is as close as I am getting to DIYing for now, but I thought I'd share how we announced our pregnancy. All you need is a computer, card stock paper, string and washi tape. It's a cute and easy way to spread the news of a bambino on the way!

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Guess What?

 Sweater: LOFT. Skirt: LOFT. Shirt: LOFT. Flats: Nine West. Necklace: Francesca's.
Cat's outta the bag, folks! Baby Numero Dos is on its way! 
This little biscuit is scheduled to arrive November 13. Who is extraordinary at math and can tell me how many weeks pregnant that is? Okay, fine I will just tell you. I am 16 weeks, the official stage where my uterus refuses to stay in and is starting to poke out for the world to start questioning if I am indeed pregnant or just laying on the ice cream eating a little too heavy. I guess it's time to set the record straight, because the days of me hiding this bump in outfit posts are dimming quickly. Get ready for a slew of maternity fashion and baby posts!

Here is the post that has patiently waited in the dark halls of the "drafts" section of my blog, which I wrote the day I found out...

I am pregnant. What am I saying? I AM PREGNANT!!!

The date is March 16, 2013. I've been feeling sick for awhile, but I took a pregnancy test not even two weeks ago and nothing but a big, fat "not pregnant" pink stick popped up. Not exactly the answer I was searching for, but luckily I found those beloved two pink lines a mere 14-ish days later.

Goodness, I love those two pink lines.

On a whim before we ventured out to the park for a Saturday play date, I thought, "Why yes, I think taking my final pregnancy test sounds like a spectacular idea."

Oh, was it ever!

That anticipation of freakishly staring at that little piece of plastic as the pee floods it is only something other neurotic moms can relate to. It's like tiny buzzing pieces of energy whirling their way around your heart and your chest, clinging to the hope that it tells you you've another bebe to add to the litter.

That moment arrived. The buzzing zinged right out the top of my head into a booming yelp of, "Maaaatttt! It's positive!"

I buzzed and buzzed some more, and then it socked me in the face, the reality of it. 

We are having another baby. There is a child in my womb! Luke is going to be a big brother!

My thoughts?

I am scared, but not scared in the first time mom kind of way. Scared in the second time mom kind of way that there might not be enough love to go around for the both of the babes. Utterly devastated that the news of a squishy pink bambino means my baby is no longer my baby. It's a funny thing. I now look upon Luke with a set of shiny responsibilities as a confidant and protector of his future sibling. All those images in my head give a new sense of maturity to this still tiny 16 month old boy. And oh is he ever going to be the best big brother this world has ever known.

Also, I can't fight the nagging sensation that this gummy bear is a little girl. Perhaps it's my psyche whispering crazy words to my internal and hormonal subconscious desires, but I just feel it. In my gut (not to be confused with my womb).

I am guestimating (such a strange and percolating word) I am about 5 weeks along. We shall see come next week!

Keeping my fingers crossed and praying extra special prayers that all is healthy and well with this fancy new life growing inside of me.

Love you, my little biscuit!

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Happy Things

Freshly painted toenails, blooming pink peonies, and pretty creations are a few of the things around here bringing a happy smile to my face.

Here is to a long weekend full of joy, and surrounding ourselves with the things that make our hearts overflow with love and gladness!

"Happiness is like a kiss. You must share it to enjoy it." - Bernard Meltzer



5 Shoes Every Girl Needs In Her Closet


My closet has been stripped down and ripped apart in the last month. You see, I am one of those weirdos that gets sentimentally attached to my clothes and shoes -- especially my shoes. But, after watching one too many episodes of Hoarders, I bucked up and rid my tiny closet of the tattered clompers I haven't worn for a year and probably will never wear again. 

Then I had a shoe epiphany... 

"Abbey, you really only need five pairs of shoes. Simplify, girl. SIMPLIFY!"

And simplify I did!

Okay, so I obviously have more than five pairs of shoes, but if you feel at a loss as to what shoe styles you need, this guide is for you!

1) Basic Pump: It is like the LBD (little black dress) of the shoe world. Don't argue with it. Just go get yourselves a pair of basic black heels. The pointed toe will help elongate your legs too (please and thank you)!

2) Flat Sandal: This is pretty much what I wear all summer long. I like to buy mine in a basic brown or black color because they will go with everything. Shorts, skirts, pants, you name it!

3) Versatile Flat: It seems counterintuitive to buy a flat that is in a bright or metallic color, but I am telling you that they are the best basic! The bright color can dress up your look or give you a polished finish to a simple look.

4) Wedge: These bad boys are easy to walk in, comfortable and add the right amount of boho and glam to your look. Need I say more?

5) Fun & Edgy: This is your wild card shoe. And every girl needs one! It's the pair of shoes that is maybe a bit too colorful or crazy, but you feel like they are your soul mate (or sole mate! People, I'm full of terrible jokes). In that case, I say buy them! And wear them with pride! The world is yours for the taking!

All of these shoes I found are from Shoedazzle. I have been weary of the whole shoe club thing, and was hesitant as to which one I should sign up for, but then I saw that Rachel Zoe is the guest stylist for Shoedazzle and the price point was right up my alley. Sold and sold! And bonus, you get 25% off your first pair of shoes. What's not to love?  

So, my fellow fashionistas, what shoes do you have your eye on? Happy shopping!

*This post is sponsored by Shoedazzle. All opinions are my own :)



Summer Style

Shirt: LOFT (on sale!). Skirt: LOFT. Shoes: JellyPop. Handbag: H&M (similar). Sunglasses: Target (similar).

As the days get warmer and warmer, it's time to bust out the summer gear! Shorts, skirts, tanks, tees, sandals! Hoorah! 

This is my basic summer go-to look. I love wearing a simple cotton skirt, paired with a printed tee. It is simple, cool, but still looks effortlessly on trend. Adding a pop of color with accessories is a good way to pack some punch in the outfit, and a wedge can be interchanged with a simple sandal.

Today I am teaming up with Gentri of Gentri Lee and Jessi of Haircut and General Attitude where they are showcasing their favorite warm weather looks too! We decided it would be fun to make this a linky party so we can all see what you are wearing! I love getting outfit inspiration from all over and it is a fun way to find other blogs as well!

Now get to linking up your fabulous looks below, and be sure to link back to us! Can't wait to see what you are wearing!



Does Blogging Make One Thinner?

 Shirt: LOFT (similar). Pants: Thrifted (similar). Hat: Madewell (similar). Shoes: c/o PB&J Boutique. Sunglasses: Target. Lipstick: NYX.

Hello, white pants! How do ya' do? I remember when we bid adieu last fall, and I am happy to see your brightness back on my legs. Gives a girl an extra skip in her step.

After looking back on those old photos of the last time I wore these pants, I have clearly lost weight. Which leads me to this theory that I have. The theory that blogging makes you thinner. Now that I have been blogging for years (when did that happen?!) I subsequently have been reading blogs for years. And I swear to you that majority of the people have become more thin. Or, perhaps it is just we have all learned our skinniest angles. Either way, I am convinced that narcissistically staring at yourself on a computer screen day after day will in fact cause you to lose weight, whether you are aware of it or not. 

Is it just me that thinks that? Are my eyes playing tricks on me?

My weight dropped once I finally found out I had Celiac's Disease and got my hypothyroidism under control. Regulating the body's metabolism and cutting out all wheat products will do that to a person. I wish I had some inspirational workout story to tell, but it was really just getting my health in order. Sooo, should you feel not quite like yourself and you just can't seem to shed those last 10 lbs of baby weight or whatever it may be, perhaps you should get your thyroid checked! It can literally be a life saver, helping physically and emotionally.

And that is my story of how I lost my weight and one of my numerous (and ridiculous) theories on blogging. The end.



Sweet Made Sweeter

Toddler life means lots of days at the park. Lots of 'em. Luke and I like to take lunch picnics and if we are lucky, we get to catch a dinner picnic or dessert with daddy. And that we did!

One of our favorite warm-weather treats is a Frosty from Wendy's, which just so happen to be gluten-free. High five, Wendy's. High five! Wendy's also recently added the Frosty Waffle Cone to their shnazzy menu, so we decided to spice up our ordering routine and tried one out. Did you see the look on Luke's face after taking his first bite? Bliss. Pure bliss. Can't say I blame him. The Frosty is a staple on the treat chart and makes those sweet moments even sweeter.

Looks like we should all add the Frosty Waffle Cone to the dessert menu this weekend, am I right? And definitely some quality time enjoying that gorgeous sunshine! I know that's where we will be!

*This post is sponsored by Wendy's.  Thanks for supporting our sponsors! :)

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A Random Thing Or Two-sday

Dress: c/o eShakti (all dresses 40% off!). Shoes: Target. Clutch: Target. Sunglasses: Target (similar). Lipstick: NARS Funny Face.

1) The last two pictures are what happens when you forget to adjust the shutter speed on your camera. And when you are trying to pose and start to lose your balance and end up looking like you are attempting an awkward version of the hoedown.

2) Fact: Wearing lipstick back in the 1700's was believed to bewitch men and trick them into getting married (source). I kind of feel like that's still true...

3) Did you know Angelina Jolie had an elective double mastectomy as a preventative measure against getting breast cancer? Would you do something like that if you knew you had an 87% chance of developing it?

4) You guys, Luke just gets cuter, and cuter, and cuter the older he gets. Looks like someone has his daddy's genes!

5) Would you rather cry every time you heard the word "the" or let out a blood-curdling scream every time someone said your name?

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Cake And Paninis

Matt and I vetoed the whole getting each other presents thing this year for our anniversary. Instead, we decided to stay in for a pleasant, home-cooked meal. I decided it would be a good idea to make something fancy, and this red velvet strawberry shortcake cake was the end result. Do not let the pictures fool you. This beast stands a foot tall! And the weight from four layers of cake started to crumble the bottom layers at the end of it all. That was the moment I realized making a trifle would have practically given my the same end result and would not have been nearly as time consuming. I mean, this monster took me almost three hours to whip up. Wife of the year award goes to me.

Also on the menu were paninis of my own invention. A turkey caprese with an extra dash of pesto and red pepper jelly, if you will. Yes, mouth-watering. And definitely not gluten-free. I figure I can have a couple of splurge days a year, and since I completely skipped out on Thanksgiving dinner, this was my moment. So what if my head aches and my arms tingle a bit for a few days? This carb fest brought me joy in no other way possible than good food does. You know the happiness I am talking about. Like I've said before, food tastes better than skinny feels. End of story.

Since we should all indulge ourselves in food decadence every once in a great while, I give you the recipes for the most glorious dinner, perfect for a summer night.

The Abbey Panini (I just made that up)


-Loaf of rosemary bread
-Red pepper jelly
-Mozzarella cheese


Put butter in a skillet on the stove top over medium heat and let melt. While butter is melting and heating, spread pesto on one slice of rosemary bread. On the other slice, spread red pepper jelly. Layer in turkey, basil, mozzarella slices, and tomato. Place on skillet and use another pan to press down. Cook for 3-4 minutes until golden brown, then flip and repeat on the other side. Yum-o!

Red Velvet Strawberry Shortcake (derived from this I Am Baker recipe)


-1 box of red velvet cake mix
-1 box of white cake mix
-1 large container of Cool Whip
-1 large container of sliced strawberries


Bake two 9" round red velvet cakes, and two 9" round white cakes using the directions per your mixes. Cut up strawberries in the meantime since the baking takes forever (especially if you are lame like me and only have one 9" pan to bake with. Actually, make sure you have two for this recipe or you will be in the kitchen alllll daayyy and that is never fun, unless you like that sort of thing). Once cakes are cooked and cooled, put together the cake. Cake first, then whipped cream, then strawberries. Repeat until you have an enormous cake that looks like it is going to topple over. Now eat your heart out!

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Happy Anniversary

Today marks 4 years since Matt and I tied the knot! Consider this the ultimate Throwback Thursday, anniversary edition. From the days of acrylic nails and tanning, to baby spit and poop, we've been through a whirlwind of experiences.

We've lived in 5 places, eaten 200+ gallons of ice cream, shared 5,000+ laughs and have 1 darling, charming little human to show for it.

Happy Anniversary, you burning hunk of love. Thanks for providing me a beautiful life and sharing moments with me that are better than any fairy tale dream a girl could hope for. You are the the real deal! I love you!

"For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul." -Judy Garland

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Washington, I Love You


I cried as I stared out the windows to the tarmac, soaking in my last few moments in Washington. It is the place that holds memories for 19 years of my 25 year-old life. It is my home. Even though my parents no longer live there, walking around the stores, parks and streets brought me that feeling of completeness that only your roots can give you.

My days in Washington aren't really talked about on this blog. I suppose I just had strange feelings of animosity toward it last time I went 4 years ago and associated all the awkward and not so appealing events that occurred. My hometown isn't and shouldn't be defined by a few humiliating and rebellious teenage years. I blamed it for my problems, but the issue was really on the inside, and those devious thoughts and problems followed me no matter my location. But, as time has its magical ways of healing wounds and patching things up, I happily welcomed my arrival in Washington and the nostalgia swept over me intensely, knocking me and my heart to the ground. 

Luke met his two oldest uncles, aunt and cousins. And was enamored with them. My best gal pals, Molly and Katie (we call ourselves the BBP, which is a good story for another day), came up too and we were solemnly up to no good, per the usual. The sun shined in a way that made me wish we could move back. We visited old stomping grounds, and went on scenic tours of old hangouts and places I climbed towers and monkey bars as a kiddo. And there were so many new things too! Buildings, schools, stores, parks... I officially felt like an old dog.

I am currently trying to persuade Matt to find a job up there so I can live out my dream of living in a quaint old home in the North End of Tacoma. Oh, the windows and molding and shrubbery! We'll see how that one goes...

Oh, and for the record, Luke was a champion flyer. Like, the most well-behaved child that ever did fly. I feel badly for underestimating him. I suppose that taught me a lesson in parenting to give your child the benefit of the doubt and trust them until they prove you wrong, right?

Until next time, Washington. I truly love you and all the memories of people, places, and events that you bring along with it.

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