Best Bathing Suits for Moms

Hello there!  I have tested out the best bathing suits for moms!  After having my daughter, and having a c-section.. My body changed.. A LOT!  I didn't want to miss out on all of the fun at the beach.  So I NEEDED to find a bathing suit that made me feel comfortable!

Also, I cannot believe that I took pictures.. in the middle of February, not at my goal weight, and without a tan.  But I am here to try to prove that you can be happy in any body shape!

Without further ado..

Mom Suit #1:  High-Waisted Reversible Bottom Lemon Suit

I absolutely LOVE this suit!  It has great coverage on the top AND bottom and I am OBSESSED with the print!  If you want to pattern mix a little bit more, then you just switch the bottoms to the striped version!!

Mom Suit #2:  Ruffled Tankini 

I don't know about you.. but when I'm on vacation, I eat all the things!  So towards the end of the week, I like to wear a tankini to hide my mommy belly!  I used the bottoms from the lemon bathing suit, and just grabbed this ruffled tankini top!!!

Mom Suit #3:  Ruffled High-Waisted

 This was my first mom suit that I bought, and it made me fall in LOVE with high-waisted bathing suits!  I LOVE the ruffle on the top!  And that you can switch both parts and mix and match other suits!  These bottoms have full coverage, too!

Mom Suit #4:  Peplum Tankini

This peplum hem on this tankini is SO cute!  I LOVE the coverage and the support that this top gives!  Also, I love the vibrant colors in the bottoms!  This also has full coverage bottoms and SO comfortable!

Well I hope that you found this beneficial and will find the BEST bathing suit for you!  Don't sit on the sidelines.. Jump in the water and MAKE MEMORIES!

Thanks for stopping by!

💓- Ashley

Healthy Snacking for the Whole Family

Healthy Snacking for the Whole Family


Good morning!  Today's Fitness Friday tip is regarding healthy snacking (for the whole family)!  I think that sometimes when people say "snack" they think of sitting down and eating an entire bag of potato chips.  (Or while my husband and I were on our all-inclusive honeymoon; we would eat a personal, wood-fire grilled pizza in the afternoon.. But that's for another time).  Sometimes people think that if they snack, that they will automatically gain weight.
This is simply NOT true!  Healthy snacking can be very beneficial for losing weight, and maintaining healthy weight!  Actually, if you are on a calorie-restricted diet, snacking is excellent to ensuring that you are not overeating!
However, you just have to snack healthy and not eat a whole bag of chips or a whole personal pizza (every day for a week). 
If you are feeling hungry, then you should grab a glass of water and drink it.  Most likely, you are more thirst than hungry!  If you're still feeling hungry, then grab a healthy snack! 
Some options  for healthy snacking are:
  • A banana
  • An apple with almond butter
  • A handful of almonds/cashews
  • A yogurt with some berries
  • Carrots and celery with hummus
  • A few crackers with cheese
  • A string cheese
  • A scoop of protein powder for a protein shake
Have a sweet tooth?!  My FAVORITE is 1 teaspoon of peanut butter and a few chocolate chips!  YUM!! (Maybe I have two of those.. Shhh).
What are you favorite healthy snacks?!  Drop them below!!
Thanks for stopping by!

What to Wear to an Interview - Numerous Styles

What to Wear to an Interview

"First impressions are the most lasting." -Proverbs

I have conducted hundreds of interviews in my 6 year career of being in middle management. And boy, have I seen it ALL when it comes to people coming in for an interview.  I have also been on numerous interviews, myself, including higher-level/executive interviews.  Thus, I thought I needed to share my information about what to wear to an interview, and other items needed to prepare!

A little bit of background about me, I have been a nurse for almost ten years!  (I seriously cannot believe that it has been TEN years.. I feel old. REAL old).  I have my MSN/MBA and I am also certified in Medical/Surgical Nursing.  Before going casual, I was what you would call an assistant nurse manager.  I had patient care duties, but also administration duties, as well.  It really was the best of both worlds. I am here to try to ease your mind and help you through the interview process, starting with what to wear!!

If you're going into a professional career, like nursing, then I suggest you sticking with the top two looks.  I highly recommend that you invest in a good suit jacket.  I am sure that shortly into your nursing career, that you will be joining committees, and possibly presenting.  Having a good suit jacket really helps!

This post may contains affiliate links.  Meaning I may earn a commission if you purchase something from this site.  Please read my disclaimer here.

1. Super-Polished/ Professional Look- with Pants

Very early in my nursing career, I was going on an interview, but felt like my suit was too "stuffy".  So I asked my sister if I could wear a nice top and black pants.  My sister replied:  "Is your interview going to be at a park?!  If the answer is no, then you need to wear a suit.  Even then, you should probably wear a suit anyways, and sweat it out."  BEST. ADVICE. EVER!  Seriously, you CANNOT go wrong with a classic black suit!  You also do NOT have to spend a TON of money on a suit.  I typically like to wear suit separates.  My suit below is a suit I've had for probably 8 years and is a suit separate.  If you have a nice pair of black pants; chances are if you grab a suit jacket, it will fit!

 2. Super-Polished/ Professional Look - with a Dress/Skirt

Some people feel more comfortable and feminine in a suit with a skirt.  I, typically, stick with the pants suit option.  However, a skirt suit can also be professional and look very nice!  It it whatever you are most comfortable in.  This is actually a simple black pencil dress paired with the same suit jacket from above. I added a little interest with the leopard pump.  However, you could also change those out for black or nude pumps. 

                                                  Suit Jacket | Suit Skirt  |  Tank  | Pumps | Necklace

3. Casual-Feeling | Comfortable Look

So if you are going on a formal interview, and/or this is your first interview.  I wouldn't suggest this outfit.  I would stick with the top two.  However, sometimes there are networking events, where you go out for lunch or meet at a meeting, and talk about next steps.  More or less a pseudo-interview.  If you're going to something like that, then I would suggest this!  Also, if you're going to an event prior to your start date; like a breakfast/brunch/HR type of event, then THIS is your outfit.  This is a simple knit blazer with ankle pants.  I love knit blazers because they look polished, but are still comfortable, and NOT stuffy!

4. Fashionable Look

Here is a look that you can do if you plan on a going for a retail or fashion interview.  I am a huge fan of blazer for interviews.  I think that blazers just give a more polished and professional look.  No matter what you're interviewing for!  If you are being interviewed for a position that you are giving fashion advice, then you could go a little bold and get fashionable with your attire.  A striped knit blazer is a great way to make a HUGE impact, while still looking professional. 

5. Edgy Look

Just being transparent, I have never wore this to an interview.  However, this would be great for someone who is interviewing for a job that requires to be a little edgier; like a nightclub manager or bartender.  This would also be good for a fashion interview, if you're feeling a little hip!  Again, this could also be worn to a meet-and-greet for your new employer, if it is in a casual setting!

6. Men's Interview Look

Guys, I didn't want to leave you out!!  Here is a look for you!  Blue suits are super popular right now!  I highly suggest that you invest in a good suit.  You can get SO much use out of it!  Sometimes, my husband just wears a suit jacket with jeans for a sport coat look!  Also, three button suits are OUT!  Make sure that you only have two buttons on your suits.  I recommended a suit with stretch in it to my husband, and now he LOVES them!  Suits can be super stuffy and hard to move in.  Getting a stretch suit is a great alternative!!

I hope that you found what to wear to an interview with this post!  Make sure that you are following along to read more interviewing tips!

Thanks for stopping by!

💓- Ashley

How To Do a Top Knot

How To Do a Top Knot

Hey hey!!  How are you today?!  I've had SO many requests on how I do my top knot!  And I hope that the top knot trend stays because I love it so much!!  I have very fine hair!  Like VERY fine!  But I can still get my hair to do a top knot!  Watch my very short (2:08) video below to see how to do a top knot!

Supplies needed to do a top knot:
(1) comb for backcombing
(1) elastic hair tie (not the springy kind)

I am amazed that I can even do a top knot since my hair is SO fine!  But it is all about working with what you have, and utilizing resources (like a clip!).

So I have been trying to improve my topknot.  And I absolutely LOVE all of the hair scarves I have seen!  So I decided I would try these bow scrunchies and add to my top knot!  Guess what?!  I LOVE them!!!  I think it adds such a cute and feminine touch to my top knot!!!

Here is a picture of my top knot in real life.  I was having a cute little coffee date with my sister!!

What do you think, are you a fan of the bow scrunchie?  Yay or nay?!

Did you try the tutorial on how to do a top knot?!  Did it work for you?!  If you have any questions, let me know!  I would be happy to answer them for you!!

Thanks for stopping by!
💓- Ashley

For your pinning pleasure...

Best Exercise for Weight Loss

 Best Exercise for Weight Loss

So I just want to start by saying that I am not trained in exercise or nutrition.  Please read my disclosure here.  However, I did win a very small bikini competition, and got down to 119 pounds.  I also gained a ton of weight (50 pounds) with my pregnancy.  And I also lost all of that weight and back to pre-pregnancy weight. You can read about my personal weight loss story here, if you're interested! 

The question arose of which type of exercise is better for losing weight, cardio or lifting weights?The short answer to this is.. both!

Just a little background on my prep for my bikini competition… I only did about 20 minutes of cardio, three times a week to achieve this look.  And that cardio came from the stair climber at the local gym.  I wanted to do that to lift the booty more than anything!  My prep consistent of a very clean diet, with one cheat meal a week, and lots of heavy weight lifting.

So when it comes to losing weight… There are numerous factors that go into it.  Simply expending more calories than you are taking in is the normal premise of losing weight.  But sometimes, even when you’re dieting, the scale isn’t budging.  If you continue to do the same thing, eat the same thing, and hit a wall with your weight loss, then you should change it up.  Change your diet a little, have a cheat meal, change your workout, or simply REST!  

Calorie-wise, you can burn 252 calories while running, but only burn 175 calories with weight lifting (for 30 minutes, and a 140 lb person).  So you would think that I would say that running or cardio is the best exercise for weight loss, right?  Not exactly..

Image from Pinterest

If you have more muscle mass, then you will burn more calories at rest. 5 pounds of fat burns only 20 calories a day, while 5 pounds of muscle burns 250 calories a day!  This means that if you are weight lifting and building more muscle, you will actually lose more weight. 
Image from Pinterest
Thus, the best type of exercise is one that has cardio and strength training combined.  This doesn't mean that you have to take a class with both in it.  It just means incorporate both into your routine.  Go take a walk around your neighborhood a couple times a week, do a workout video, go to the gym and do some circuit training.

I want to finish by encouraging you to do whatever exercise is best for YOU!  Don't have your goal to be to run on the treadmill if you absolutely hate running!  Running isn't my favorite, so I do the spinning bike.  Also, I have been a HUGE fan of boxing, lately.  It incorporates strength training and cardio.  Its the best class, EVER!  

Do what makes you happy, try to move each day, and make healthier choices!

Thanks for stopping by!

Amazon Haul

                      The Magic of Motherhood |Faux Leather Crossbody Bag | TruSkin Facial Toner |
                      Glitter Statement Earrings | Bracelet Stack |  Glitter Eye Shadow | 
                      Gold Glitter Nail Polish

This post contains affiliate links.  Please read my disclaimer

Today I am sharing my most recent (and amazing) Amazon purchases!  All of these items are currently under $30!! Wahoo!  (Please note that Amazon has wonderful deals and prices, which are subject to change without notice.)

1. The Magic of Motherhood book

This is my next up for reading!  I got this recommendation from one of my best friends!  She said that she was INSTANTLY moved while reading the first couple pages of this book!  I am so excited to read it!!

2. Faux Leather Crossbody Bag

Now this faux leather bag is a sure winner!  It has a perfect saddle shape, a gorgeous cognac/tan faux leather color, and the perfect length for a crossbody bag.  It also has an adjustable strap and numerous other colors available!!  So so excited for this one!

3. TruSkin Facial Toner

One of the biggest names for beauty products on Amazon is TruSkin!  They have SO many different things available from serums, to lotions, to moisturizers, this toner and SO much more!  I really want to try their Vitamin C Serum, but I needed toner, so I tried this out first!

If you never used a toner before.. it is GREAT!  It helps hydrate your skin, close pores, and makes your skin SO smooth.  I use this at night, AFTER I wash my face and BEFORE my moisturizer!

This TruSkin Toner has Vitamin C and Glycolic acid in it, so it is supposed to even out skin tone and brighten it.  Since I have very sensitive skin, I was a little nervous about the glycolic acid.  However, I have have NO redness, irritation, or adverse skin reactions! It is a MUST try!

4. Glitter Statement Earrings and 5. Bracelet Stack

I showed this picture as a sneak peak of my outfit that I wore to a fundraiser for Parkinson's Disease.  I thought that I was going to wear a different pair or earrings pictured, but I wore my trusty statement glitter earrings, instead and I LOVED them!

I also ordered this sequined dress this month from Amazon!  It is under $40 and the quality is AMAZING!  The back is a V-cut, but I just wore a regular strapless bra and the black showed just a wee bit!  There are so many colors available!!  My sister attended the function with me and ordered the same dress in a different color!  It was SO SO good!  I sized down to a small because it was a little big in the waist for me.  Lindsay is wearing small and that is true for her.  So if you're in between, size down!

Here is another picture to show the versatility of the statement glitter earrings!  I wear these guys ALL the time now!

If you're in the market for glitter eye shadow, then this is for YOU!  It has SO many different and vibrant color glitters!  The glitter is actually a full coverage and stays in place!  So it is a TRUE glitter eye shadow!  I used it for the fundraiser event and it looked AMAZING!!

I also used this product to help me get ready for the big fundraiser event!  I used this to give myself a pedicure!  So they said that this was a full coverage gold glitter.  But I did not find that to be true.  However, it was still SO pretty on.  I just had to do one coat of another gold polish I had and then to two coats of this!  Then it looked like a true, full coverage, and chunky glitter polish!!

I hope that you enjoyed my most recent Amazon Haul!!  Let me know what you think!

Thanks for stopping by!

💓- Ashley

How to Fight the Flu | Benefits of Elderberry

How to Fight the Flu + Benefits of Elderberry

This post contains affiliate and supplementation recommendations.  Please read my disclaimer here.

So I’m sure you’ve heard about elderberry if you’re searching for cold and flu remedies.  However, you’re probably wondering what the heck it is and how you ever use it?!  One of my friends suggested that I used it.  Of course, with my background in nursing, I HAD to research it before I tried it.  So I am taking all of the legwork out for YOU and to show you everything that I have learned/research about the benefits of elderberry and how to fight the flu with elderberry!

There has been more and more at-home treatments to fight cold and flu in recent years.  With the influenza virus that was an epidemic in 2017-2018,people have been turning to at-home remedies to keep themselves and their families healthy. (Seriously, the flu last year was BAD. I had first-hand, acute care hospital experience, taking care of sick patients with the flu last year.)

What is Elderberry and What are the Benefits of Elderberry?!

Quite simply elderberries are the fruit from the elderberry shrub [1].  It has been used for a long time for herbal remedies for colds, flu, and sinus infections [1]. 
“Black elderberries…, are well known to be supportive agents against common cold and flu like symptoms and have been used for centuries [2.]”   Elderberry has been gaining popularity due to its reported “antioxidant, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory as well as antidepressant properties [2]”.

There has been numerous studies that have shown the antibacterial and antiviral properties of elderberry.  Also, there have been other studies that looked at elderberry liquid extract which showed to have a reduction in symptoms AND duration of the flu.  There was also another study that looked at elderberry lozenges which reduced the severity and duration of cold and flu symptoms [2].

There was this pretty awesome (a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled) study that tried to see if using elderberry (10 days) before and (4-5 days) travelling via plane, would help reduce cold and flu symptoms.  The study concluded that using elderberry DID help with the reduction of cold symptoms of travelers [2].  AKA, if you’re travelling soon.. grab some elderberry and take it before and after your flight!!

What does all of this mean?!

Quite simply.. it means grab some elderberry because it helps!

My personal experience with elderberry

Initially, I bought some children’s gummies for my daughter.  She wouldn’t take any vitamins, so I thought that I could give her these gummies.  I tried them for a couple days before her!  They were actually REALLY good!!  These gummies tasted like a sugary, grape fruit snack!   I tried to give them to her.. and she wouldn’t eat it!  She only licked the sugar off it!  UGH!

I needed to do something else.  So I looked into liquid elderberry syrup!  I thought.. she HAS to take this!  So I ordered this one off of Amazon, because it had dosing for toddlers! 

Again, I tried it for a couple days before giving it to her.  (Please note that there are different dosages for adults and toddlers).  It was SURPRISINGLY good!  Like REALLY good!  It tastes like a dull grape flavor.   A couple days later, I gave some to my daughter and she TOOK it!  Yesss! 

Guys, I am telling you (and knocking on wood).. since we have been taking elderberry, we have NOT been sick!  We’ve been using this for about a month.  I am SO glad that we have tried it.  Seriously, give it a try! If there is ONE thing that you ever buy from my recommendations.. PLEASE let it be this!  I am telling you.. This stuff works!!  And there is dosing for toddler and adults.  SO  you only have to purchase ONE thing for the WHOLE family!  Buy blackberry elderberry syrup here!

Cool things that you can do with Elderberry

Guys.. You can make COCKTAILS with it!!  I don't know about you.. But after a long shift in the school or hospital, and nice cocktail that BATTLES the FLU?!  Sign me up!  (I have never tried this, but am going to!). 

Here are a couple recipes for cocktails using Elderberry!  The first one I found from Kathy Eats.  The second I found from Boxwood Avenue!

  •         3 ounces gin.
  •        1.5 ounces moscato (or other sweet wine)
  •        1/2 tsp elderberry syrup.
  •        1/2 tsp lemon juice.
  •        1 basil leaf.
  •        Lemon peel for garnish.
     Mix and ENJOY!

  •       1.5 oz elderberry syrup
  •       Juice from 2 limes
  •       3 oz vodka
  •       0.5 oz germain

     Mix and ENJOY!

      Disclaimers for Elderberry Use

  • Please note that if you find elderberry in the wild, do not eat them!  There are some parts of the berry/shrub that are poisonous.  
  • Also, if you are pregnant or nursing, please consult your physician before taking any supplements or medications.  There has not been enough research to show if elderberry is safe for pregnant or nursing women.
  • Please consult your physician before giving any medications to your child/toddler.
  • If you are taking any medications, please consult with your physician to ensure that you are healthy enough to take them and to ensure that there is no medication reactions.  Even with herbal supplementation, there could be potential adverse reactions. 

I hope that you have found this post helpful!

Thanks so much for stopping by!


     (1) Wong, Cathy. ( 2018). Can Elderberry Fight Colds?
 (2)Tiralongo, E., Wee, S., & Lea, R. (March 24, 2016).  Elderberry Supplementation Reduces Cold Duration Symptoms in Air Travellers:  A Randomized, Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial.  Doi: 10.3390/nu8040182

How to Style a Chambray Shirt | 3 Ways

How to Style a Chambray Shirt | 3 Ways

This post may contain affiliate links.  Please see my disclaimer in regards to compensation for links on my page.

Today I am going to be showing you how to style a chambray shirt three different ways!  I purchased this awesome chambray shirt from Amazon.  It was getting a little big, so I unbuttoned the bottom button, and tied it! 

Look 1: Red Pants| Business Causal

For this look, I used the chambray shirt, and added some red ankle pants and my favorite black wedge booties.  I was still channeling the Valentine's Day vibes, so I had to use those red pants!  They are the CUTEST!!  You could even add a cardigan over this for a business casual look!

Look 2:  Pleated Midi Skirt| Sweet & Flirty

I love giving options that JUST don't involve pants.  So here I paired the chambray shirt with this very flattering pleated midi skirt and my most favorite round toe pumps.  This could also be used to for the office and then out for dinner afterwards!

Look 3:  Butter Denim | Casual & Trendy

For the last look, I wanted something super casual.  So I used the chambray shirt and paired it with my favorite butter denimplaid infinity scarf, and Muk Luks booties

Which one if your favorite look?!  Look 1, 2, or 3?

I had my Facebook and Instagram vote on their favorite look. And their favorite look was.....

Look 3!!!

I hope that you enjoyed this post on how to style a chambray shirt!  Make sure that you are following me on Facebook and Instagram so you can keep up to date!

Thanks for stopping by!