Wednesday, August 30, 2017

The Original + The Remix

While I was searching the world wide web last year I ran across a compelling picture of a young dad holding his son with shirts that read "The Original" and "The Remix." I loved the concept of the message so much that I had to find out where the shirts were made. So I did a little investigating and came across a Fort Wayne, Indiana Etsy shop seller by the name of KaAnsDesigns.  This shop is the originator (although you will find many copycats of the design elsewhere on the Internet) of the shirts simple slogans: the original and the remix! Before I even had Grayson, I knew at some point I wanted to order the shirts and have our pictures taken as a family in them.

So fast forward to a few months ago, I ordered the shirts (which took about 2 weeks to ship) for my husband, Grayson, and myself. Then I called up the photographer, Raven from A Blissful Moment Photography, that did our maternity shoot (you can see my blog post that included the photos here) for her (and her boyfriend and business partner David) to shoot our first family photos as a trio. She happily accepted and the rest is history. 

I knew I wanted all of us to have matching outfits so I ordered the shirts (in Grayson's case his shirt was a 3/6 month onesie), then I selected denim jeans that were all around the same hue. Lastly, I knew I wanted us all to have the same shoes so I went on the hunt to find shoes that would match the vibe of the shoot, coordinate with the outfit, and a shoe that we could find in ALL of our sizes. I landed on the Adidas Superstars (#classicshelltoes). The shoe was the perfect item to tie all of our looks together!  

We chose a quaint courtyard to shoot the majority of the photos in downtown Macon, GA before finishing up the shoot in a swanky lobby of one of Macon's premiere downtown lofts. Overall, I was beyond pleased with how the photos turned out. It showcases the dynamic of our little family! I love to capture Grayson on film (whether it's via pictures, video, or even Snapchat) because I hold these precious memories dear, plus my child is a ham...he loves the camera. One day I will collect all the photos and videos that I've taken of him growing up and will present them to him when the time is right. Until then, I will continue to enjoy these precious memories we are creating as a family! And look back with great joy on how our family grew in size but most importantly, in LOVE!

P.S. I couldn't do this photo shoot without having a piece of DJ near, so I wore my double stacked DJ nameplate necklaces so that our angel could be represented in our family photos as well!!! We miss you every day DJ! You're our guardian angel. 

Outfit Details: The Original Adult Unisex Tee (here), The Remix Onesie (here), Adidas Superstar Men's (here), Adidas Superstar Big Kids (here), Adidas Original Superstar Crib Infant Shoes (here), Hubby's Jeans (Old Navy), My Jeans (Charlotte Russe+), Grayson's Jeans (here in denim blue)
I'd love to hear what you do to create memories of your family? Family pictures? Vlogs? Letters to one another? Trips? Leave your answers in the comment section below! Happy hump day luvs.


Monday, August 28, 2017

I'm Coming Home

2 weeks ago, I, along with my husband and son went back to the place I call home, MICHIGAN. If you've never been or have no clue where Michigan is on the map, it's at the very top of the map. It is considered the Midwest and is shaped like a mitten. You can literally see Canada from Michigan's [figurative] backyard hailing Detroit as it's most popular major city. 

It had been an entire year since I had last been back home. The last time I had been in Michigan was for a family reunion. During that trip [last year] is when I discovered I was infanticipating with Grayson (what a difference a year makes). During my time at home I had a jam - packed itinerary, from hanging with my grandparents (Grayson's GiGi & Pop - Pop), stopping by my favorite old school ice cream parlor (Washtenaw Dairy), celebrating my father for his 25 years of service as a pastor, to having Grayson blessed then having a garden themed "sip & see." To say this trip was jammed pack from seam to seam is an understatement. But it was one of the most fulfilling trips I've had in a while, because I was able to soak up time with my family and friends, especially visiting with my Aunt Phyllis (who was my dad's twin sister), because she passed away one week after we returned to Georgia. 

One of the many highlights of the trip was going to explore the new and improved downtown Detroit. Since the last time I went to visit Detroit A LOT has changed. Downtown was absolutely stunning. From Coney Islands to awesome shops I was very impressed at Detroit's transformation. One of the places where we stopped was a cute, on - trend, boutique called "Detroit Is The New Black" aka DITNB. I loved the store because it had such a cool - kids vibe. There was awesome merchandise as well as an art gallery. Plus they screen print the shirts right in the store, which I thought was amazing. To put the icing on the cake the store is owned by one of my husband's preschool classmates from Seattle, WA (what are the freaking odds) and it is located on prime time real estate, near Comerica Park

While at DITNB I purchased this dope tee. I love that it's in my favorite color combination and the fact that it has such a cool statement, which can also double as a great conversation starter piece. I paired the basic DITNB scoop neck t-shirt underneath my sheer peplum shaped tee shirt, along with my distressed jeans, a pair of sandals and a pair of cute clear - framed sexy specs. 

Outfit Details: DITNB Woodward Tee (here), Sheer Peplum (H&M), Distressed Jeans (Gap: old), Sandals (Forever 21:old), Clear Sexy Specs (Love Culture), The Lip Bar Liquid Matte Lippie in Prima Donna (here), Fitbit Blaze with Navy Strap (Amazon)

It's been a while since I last blogged, please forgive me for the long sabbatical. It was a  much needed break so I could just bond with my munchkin and settle into my new role as a mommy to a growing baby (who is almost 6 months).  But now I have new found wind and perspective to keep pushing through and taking Ali's Fashion Sense to the next level (which may involve a new domain and name change...stay tuned). 

All in all my trip home was a success. It was nice to visit some local shops (i.e. DITNBThe Lip Bar, Nike Town Detroit, The Detroit RiverWalk and many more). The sentiment does ring true: "There is no place like home!" Where do you call home? How often do you get to visit? What are some cool things to do in your area? Leave your responses in the comment section below. 

Until next time luvs,

Monday, August 14, 2017

Dear Gray

Dear Gray,
You turned 5 months about 2 weeks ago on August 4th. Sorry mommy is so late with this post...better late than never though, right? Time is flying by literally, hence the airplanes in the picture above..just kidding, not really, it just feels like a metaphor about your life, it is truly flying by. (While we're discussing the airplanes we should pause and send out a special thank you to Sister Womack who sewed this amazing quilt together just for you. It looks absolutely incredible). You are growing like a weed! Your arms and legs are getting longer and you are filling out the more you drink mommy's liquid gold (aka breast milk). It seemed like overnight you went from wearing sizes 0-3 months, to 3 months, to now 3-6 months. You can even wear 6 month clothing. I can't keep up with your growing body or growing appetite. The last time we went to the doctor's office you were 14.5 lbs and 21 inches long. I'm pretty sure you've grown since then. Beside your expanding length here are some other things you've been doing over the past month.

Trying something new
You finally got big enough to wear some of the hats mommy purchased you. Although this bucket hat is still a little big for you, you looked so adorable the first time you wore it, I had to sneak a picture of you in it. You didn't seem as amused though but you definitely looked handsome.

Play it up for the camera
I think you are definitely your mommy's child, you are a ham. You play it up for the camera. When you and mommy are bored we play in Snapchat filters. We also throw on our sunnies and have mommy - and - son photo shoots because "we're cool like that!

Mommy's favorite outfit for you this month
This month my favorite outfit for you would have to be the Fox onesie with the striped pants. I really love this outfit (although you're starting to out grow it) paired with your newsboy hat and gray moccasins. This outfit makes you look like the perfect gentleman and mommy's big boy. 

People still love to see you every chance they get, from Facetime, to receiving updated pictures  of you, to visiting you in person! This go round you got a visit from Grandma and Grandad (mommy's parents) all the way from Ypsilanti, Michigan (that is where mommy grew up). Grandad had to cut his trip short because he had an obligation to tend to, so he didn't get to take a picture with you. But right before Grandma got on the road daddy snapped these pictures of us! I think you enjoyed the kisses :)

All Smiles
This month we took our very first road - trip together, just you and me to Tio Dion's & Aunt Kisha's house. I was so nervous that you wouldn't make it the one and a half hour drive, but you shocked me and slept the entire way!!! While we were in Atlanta Aunt Kisha watched you 2 nights while mommy worked at a couple of fashion shows at the Apparel Mart downtown Atlanta. One of the nights while I was working Aunt Kisha sent me this picture of you having a ball with your cousins. You were ALL smiles! I hope I can live each day with as much excitement as you exuded in this picture. It brings me such joy every time I look at your smiling face. Plus, your dimple is to die for.

Family First
Just last week we had our first professional family photos taken by Raven and David from A Blissful Moment Photography. They took mommy and daddy's  maternity photo shoot pictures while you were still in mommy's belly. We took our family pictures downtown Macon, GA in a cool courtyard and in some swanky lofts. Mommy and Daddy wore matching shirts that said "The Original" and you wore a shirt that said "The Remix," since you are the perfect remix of both daddy and I. These are some behind the scenes photos and one exclusive sneak peak that Raven sent. I can't wait to see the rest  of the photos from the shoot (we'll do a blog post on them later when we get the rest of the photos edited). 

Additional things you've done in month 5
Besides rapidly growing,  you also have started being very vocal and making new sounds. You still love watching Sesame Street on YouTube. We even found some songs we  jam out to together with (cue up "Elmo's Got the Moves & The Elmo Slide"). You've been blowing a lot more spit bubbles which makes mommy think you will be getting some teeth soon. You tried your first snack besides mommy's milk or formula, and you even started enjoying playing "peek - a - boo" with Mommy! Oh yea one last thing, you can sit up by yourself for the most part. People get a kick out of you in church. You sit up on the pew by yourself like a big boy and take in the music, the many faces, and the preached word.

While you are continuously growing it is moments like this (see the picture below), when you fall asleep in my arms, or you give mommy wet kisses on the cheek that I cherish the most! You make EVERYDAY special! I am still stunned at times that you are truly mine (and daddy's child). You are such a blessing (if I don't tell you that's another time for good measure). I love you so much Grayson. Here's to five months. Can't wait to see what month six has in store.

Love Mommy (and Daddy)

Monday, July 10, 2017

Dear Gray

Dear Gray
You turned 4 months on July 4th! How cool is that. The more that time passes the more I see you growing and becoming little Mr. Independent. Mommy really wants you to slow down....I'm not ready for you to grow up just yet. But I know it's inevitable. So here are some of the things you've been doing in month 4. 

What you've discovered 
Your fingers, in-particular your thumb. You try to suck your thumb a lot but mommy stays on the lookout because I don't want you to get addicted. It's a tough habit to break.

How you amaze me
You can sit up on your own if we prop you up on the couch. You look like a total big boy sitting up this way. You're also very observant. You take in new sites, new sounds, and new people with ease. You especially are into technology. You're a pro at Facetiming and watching Sesame Street clips on Youtube. You also reach for your favorite toys now (the caterpillar rattle, and the plush elephant).

Road tripping
You took your 2nd road trip to Florida to attend the wedding of one of  mommy's collegiate friends from FAMU (which stands for Florida A&M University  you'll hear more about my Alma mater in the near future #babyrattler). Everyone was so pleased to meet you!!! That 7.5 hour drive was not your favorite but we managed to make it through in one piece.

What you do
I heard your laugh for the first time, it is absolutely adorable. Your laugh is infectious and puts a smile on my face constantly. You have a dimple that peeks out whenever you laugh or slightly smile. You're a lot more vocal more so than last month. I swear I heard you say hi one day. You carry full on conversations in your own language, which it is pretty entertaining because you know exactly what you're saying even if mommy and daddy can't fully understand you just yet. You follow daddy around the room with your eyes and head. He gets a kick out of it because you look up to him literally and figuratively and mommy thinks it pretty cute too!

Holiday Recap
You celebrated daddy's first Father's Day of many with him. Mommy bought you a cool onesie from Carter's that said "Happy 1st Father's Day" in Detroit Tigers colors (navy blue and orange), then I set up an at home photoshoot in your nursery and took pictures of you with your building blocks spelling: "I Love You Dad!" I even made a collage of you, then got it printed and framed. Daddy even took it to work and put it on his desk. #Proudpapa

Favorite book this month
Mommy purchased a book  called the "ABC's For the Little G's" that teaches you your ABC's using sneakers. It is such a dope book. I'm hoping we can use the book to help build your sneaker collection :) (just don't tell daddy). 

Favorite outfit this month
I bought you a shirt that says "The Remix" and mommy and daddy have shirts that say "The Original." Plus we purchased matching Superstar Adidas Shell Toes. We're going to take those shirts and the Adidas and do a photoshoot at the end of the month. I can't wait to see how the pictures turn out, because the last time you took pictures professionally, you were  only 2 weeks old. 

Meeting someone new
You met daddy's dad (Grandpa) and daddy's oldest brother (Uncle Derryn) over the 4th of July weekend. You got to hang with the fellas for a bit while mommy had some much needed "mommy - time." They flew all the way from Seattle, WA to come visit you, so you must be a BIG DEAL! 

Favorite song currently in rotation
Mommy found a song to play to you everyday that embodies how I feel about you. It's called "I Love You So Much" and it's on DJ Khaled's latest album! There is so much positivity oozing from the song. It's a song that DJ Khaled initially wrote for his son Asahd, but I think it works perfectly with the relationship we have, because I truly do love you [so much]!!! You are mommy's pride and joy!

So, as you can see, month 4 was awesome. Can't wait to see what month 5 has in store. Until next month...I LOVE YOU SO MUCH!

Love Mommy (and Daddy)