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Lifestyle, Plus Size Fashion, Reviews

Wardrobe Remix: Three Looks, One Item: ELOQUII Shimmer One Piece

Oh my, Loves – say hello the Shimmer One Piece from ELOQUII! This Swimsuit – this beautiful shimmery bronze goldish swimsuit is what summer dreams are made of; the bronze metallic shimmer in the fabric compliments any skin tone (I’m extremely pale and was concerned about looking washed out and that was soo not the case), the construction of this suit had me feeling utterly secure with built in soft wire free cups support, and I’m a DD, and it hugged my curves to perfection!

High waisted detail plunging neckline

The adjustable straps are easy to move about and I was able to create the perfect strap length for me! The suit is fully lined and one of my favorite design elements of this suit is the high waist detail and the plunging neckline, can we say sexy?! I felt like a goddess in this suit which is why it inspired a few other looks that I’ve included below! But first, one more swimsuit shot because my goodness – it’s just wow!

First look inspired by this gorgeous suit is what I like to call The Boss Bitch Blazer Look! The base of this look, is of course, the shimmer one piece, next I paired it with Neoprene Pencil Skirt in plaid – again an ELOQUII piece – and topped this look off with a blazer I found in the back of my husband’s side of the closet. Combined with edgy ankle boots and you have a sexy yet professional style that earns a double look every time!

Now, if you Loves have been with me for a moment or two you know I keep accessories to a minimum and this look was no different. Dangling pearl earrings in gold accents, with a matching gold crystal pointer ring and my late grandmothers opal in a gold setting. No necklace because I just loved how stunning my cleavage looked bare. I normally never not wear a bra lol but with the built in support I felt the girls where secure to take out for a spin!

One detail I truly love about this neoprene pencil skirt is the zipper detail in the back of the skirt hem! You can unzip it to relax the fit of the skirt or keep it zipped like I have it here for that tight classic pencil skirt look.

The second look inspired by this shimmery beautiful one piece is what I refer to as the Casual Brunch Look! We have the one piece paired with the fabulously comfy Ruffle Waist Pant With Ankle Ties and yes, Loves – it’s got pockets!!!

With this look I wanted to keep things simple so I added a small black shrug I found while thrifting and a pair of utterly fabulous platform heels. Accessories are simple again with just the added detail of a heart choker and matching sunglasses that my dear photographer House Of Winter Studios provided for this shoot!

And Last, but certainly not least, is the Spring Bunny Costume Look! This look was created from my brilliant photographer’s mind! She had this gorgeous spring set and decided that I needed to be a bunny and who was I to argue?

This look was created using a pair of bunny ears and fake cherry blossom flowers, we left the shoes and choker from the brunch look and then we pinned a bunny tail on the back to complete this frivolously cute spring look – hey, who said costumes are just for Halloween!

One of the things I truly love about Boudoir photography is the fun of it! It doesn’t have to be perfect or exactly styled just so to be enjoyed and everybody can enjoy Boudoir! I love how whimsical the set is, I love how sexy I look (PlayBoy Bunnies Eat Your Heart Out) but I also love the fun costume element of the ears and tail! Over all it was a fun shoot with gorgeous results and the next time I’m having a bad body day I’m going to remind myself of how sexy I looked as a bunny lol!

Until next time my Loves,

Kat XO

*The links above are affiliate codes which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate y’all!*

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Lifestyle, Parenting

Fun Inside Craft/Baking Activities For You & The Little One!

As a stay at home Mom I know trying to find fun and fulfilling activities for my little one is an on-going effort, I’m always looking for fun and interactive things to keep our day filled so below are some of my favorite activities and what you’ll need to try them out! I’ll continue to add this list so make sure to check back often.

Remember to stay creative, make it fun, be prepared for messes and enjoy!

Sweet Potato Cookie Recipe – Delicious And way healthier than an Oreo!

  1. One whole sweet potato; puréed
  2. 1 cup of Brown Sugar
  3. 1 Egg
  4. 2 cups of all purpose Flour
  5. One tbsp Vanilla
  6. 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  7. 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
  8. 2 teaspoons of Cinnamon
  9. 1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger
  10. 1/2 teaspoon of all spice
  11. 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg
  12. 1 stick of butter (or half cup) room temp (I personally melt it because it mixes better)
  13. Gluten free caramel or chocolate dip for glaze

Step one: preheat the oven to 375 F and adjust racks to middle position, line two cookie sheets with parchment paper/foil/ or non stick cooking spray.

Step two: In a medium bowl sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and all spice.

Step three: Use a mixer and combine the butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla – once mixed well add in the sweet potato and once you’ve mixed this all together blend in the dry ingredients and mix well.

Step four: Drop a good spoonful on the cookie sheet, keep about 2 inches of space between cookie blobs. Bake until edges are golden brown, usually about 18min.

Step five: Let cool & add the glaze!

Archeologist, Digging For Dino’s

  1. Small toy Dinosaurs
  • 2. Jello
  • Prepare the jello mix as directed, before setting in the fridge place plastic toys in the bowl and then let it set. Once done the activity is ready to go as soon as you and your little one are ready! I usually take this time to talk about the Dinosaurs she’s playing or putting on Dinosaur Train while she engages in this activity.
  • To shop for the items used above to create your own dig, click the link here: Kat’s DIY Kids Activity List

    Flour & Salt Ornaments/Mementos

    1. 1 cup of flour
    2. Half a cup of salt
    3. Cup of water
    4. Craft/art/acrylic paint
    5. Decorative ribbon
    6. Straw

    Step one: preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.

    Step two: Combine all of the ingredients and knead the dough for five to ten minutes. If the dough happens to be dry add a little more water in and knead it a little more.

    Step three: Roll out the dough to a thickness that you’d like it to be, keep in mind the thicker it is the longer it will need to bake.

    Step four: Using a large cookie cutter or bowl of your just going for a round plaque or ornament, cut out different shapes that you’d like to decorate.

    Step five: If your doing a handprint or footprint now is the time to have that little one place their hand/foot into the dough.

    Step six: Using a straw or a pair of scissors, make a hole in the top for where you want to hang your ornament.

    Step seven: Bake for 1-2 hours. If still doughy, put back in for another hour.

    Step eight: Let cool for about an hour and then you are ready to paint and decorate!

    To shop for the items used above to create your own ornament, click the link here Kat’s DIY Kids Activity List

    Finger Painting

    1. Construction/art paper
    2. Non-toxic paint

    For this example I used our family home made holiday card, we used the finger paint to create little lights and then my husband and I added our own prints to complete the card.

    To shop for the items used above to create your own finger painting masterpiece, click the link here Kat’s DIY Kids Activity List

    Sewing activity

    This activity I chose to do during a rainy day which is why we made a cloud.

    1. Construction paper
    2. Yarn
    3. Tissue paper
    4. Egg carton
    5. Hole puncher
    6. Markers/paint/crayons
    7. Tape

    Step one: take two pieces of construction paper, trace out a simple yet large shape, cut out while holding both pieces so they match exactly.

    Step two: using the hole punch go around the cut out papers and place easily spaced out holes.

    *Step three: this next step is optional, I wanted the project to have volume so I made a second set of holes and laced that small part myself and stuffed a piece of tissue paper in it, so not only could she hold on to that while we worked but also so it couldn’t come apart while she was trying it out.

    Step four: once you have the holes done take the yarn and tie one end off in a knot so that’s always their starting point, then take the tape and wrap the other end of the yarn, this makes it easier to keep it together while sewing.

    Now once your little one is done you can either tie it off as completed and add decorations or leave it untied so they can unlace and re-lace to their little heart’s content!

    To shop for the items used above to make your own sewing activity, click the link here Kat’s DIY Kids Activity List

    Make sure to check back for updated activities and crafts! Until next time Loves,

    Kat XO

    *The links above are affiliate codes which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate y’all!*

    Plus Size Fashion, Reviews

    A Holiday Look With Eloquii : Review

    I just love a little sparkle for the Holidays! And this jumpsuit from Eloquii is such a stunning bit of sparkle that I not only felt festive but fabulous wearing it.

    The full sleeve Metallic Jumpsuit is beyond perfect for the holidays! As a Mom the holidays usually mean multiple stops and long days out, chaotic family parties, and lots of running around. So while yes, I want to look fabulous but I also want to be comfortable enough to trail after my daughter. This jumpsuit is just the perfect minimal, fabulous, easy to slip on outfit that I was looking for! Threw on a black belt and matching heels and BAM this Mama was ready to roll.

    Now let’s talk details my Loves; if you’ve read any of my reviews on one pieces before then you know how I hate having to use the bathroom in public because it’s usually hard to reach whatever snap or button they’ve added to the back to secure you in, not an issue with this baby! The snap is in the front hidden in the neckline and is easy peezy to get to. I also love that if I wanted to keep it unsnapped the jumpsuit would still fit perfectly and I’d be able to show off whatever top I wanted to add in underneath.

    It Has Pockets! Lol excuse my excitement but I’m such a pockets kind of lady that usually one of the first things out of my mouth about a look is, “Oh thanks, it’s got pockets”! So I was just thrilled to find two pockets in this beauty and the fact they fit my iPhone was fabulous. I usually forgo purses these days and just jam everything in my daughter’s diaper bag and I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to go digging in the bag for my phone. So yes, I’m a huge fan of pockets that actually fit my phone therefore saving it from the dark depths of the diaper bag.

    To Shop The Look Click Here ELOQUII

    I also wanted to point out this metallic stunner is completely lined on the inside so you are not dealing with any scratchy or itchy fabrics. This jumpsuit felt as comfortable as my onesie pajamas – soo comfortable to wear!

    Overall I’d say I’m completely in LOVE with my Eloquii Metallic full sleeved jumpsuit. The fit was incredible, the fabric comfortable and I looked stunning with very little effort on my part 😉

    Until next time My Loves,

    Kat XO

    *The links above are affiliate codes which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate y’all!*

    ** Huge shout out to House Of Winter for the fabulously festive family shots!!

    Plus Size Fashion, self love

    Anxiety & Bondage

    The most basic definition of anxiety and it’s resulting symptoms can be summarized by stating that a person can experience intense and extreme persistent worry and excessive fear about everyday situations resulting in a higher heart rate, rapid breathing, sweating, and exhaustion. Now, if you actually experience anxiety you know that the above statement is more like a sugarcoated way of briefly describing the tip of an anxiety ice burg.

    Anxiety symptoms can range from a debilitating fear of leaving the home, to mumbling and social fumbling, black spots behind the eyes and fainting, cold sweats, over heated, nausea, sweaty palms, nervousness, crying, anger and agitation, and depression. These are just a few symptoms and for many people they experience these at different levels and to different degrees. There are prescriptions you can have prescribed as well as working with a therapist that can all help with anxiety and dealing with anxiety.

    Now, one of the techniques/tricks/tools I’ve learned while dealing with my own anxiety is that bondage wear can help drastically cut down on any social anxiety I may be experiencing while out at events or social functions where there are large crowds. As a public speaker and someone who is use to big crowds it may sound funny to hear that I experience anxiety about these situations, but like many of you – I do.When I’m in a heavily crowded place my anxiety can start to go through the roof – I worry about taking up space, I worry about bumping in to others, I don’t want other people bumping in to me… the list goes on. And I’ve found that bondage wear helps; a collar/choker, or wearing a harness over the clothing or under drastically cuts down on the anxiety. Why? Simple: for me it feels like I’m in a constant embrace. I feel secure and safe. Which then translates to my entire being that we’re good; my posture straightens, eye contact is no issue, body bumps are no problem, my confidence feels boosted, and having that constant embrace makes me feel almost invincible. Like I could take on the world and do it confidently because I’ve got that support in place.

    How many of you Loves experience anxiety attack’s? I’m right there with you. My heart beat will pick up, I’ll start getting the nervous sweats, my skin feels like it’s got creepy crawlers scurrying about, my vision tunnels and it can feel like I’m drowning – catching my breath at that point almost feels impossible. A harness actually helps me deal with this: having the constant reassuring pressure on my chest helped to anchor me and by focusing on that slight pressure I’m able to concentrate not only on the moment at hand but the situation at hand; part of my social anxiety is caused by the constant what if’s in my head (tripping, saying something stupid and embarrassing, outfit disaster). So a harness, for me, is like a reassuring hug that say’s “Hey – stop future tripping bitch you got this!”

    Now Loves, I want to point out that scientifically there is also backing that engaging in BDSM activities (Yes, even just wearing the bondage wear) leaves people with lower levels of stress and an increase in cortisol levels which could be attributed to the non-judgmental environment while also experiencing physical intensity and letting go of expectations leaving the person feeling free and therefore releasing tension and anxiety. Often compared to the sensation of a “runner’s high” or mind space of a yoga practitioner.

    So in summary; it’s not just about the pleasure but about the feelings the bondage wear can create in the wearer, it’s about feeling secure and safe and allowing that item to help create a sense of safety within yourself.

    Huge shout out to my bestie Tami of House Of Winter for shooting this set and Bawdy Love for sponsoring this amazing harness Hecate set, this set had me feeling like a sexy goddess safe and secure in her own skin!!

    Had to throw in there that this article was inspired by @iharterika and the incredible work that she does!

    And last but certainly not least lol my hubby for just being him (Yes, that’s my husband in the set with me).

    Until next time my Loves,

    Kat XO

    Plus Size Fashion, Reviews

    Timeless: MVMT Avenue Watch Review

    I’ll have to admit that I’ve never been a watch wearer and am a girl who likes to keep her accessories to a minimum. With MVMT’s timeless designs I think I may be changing my tune on the no watch policy.

    The stunning color of gold is just understated and perfect enough to shine but not over power any look. The vintage feel of the design will allow me to incorporate it in to many of my Pinup/Retro styled looks and I absolutely love the band’s detailed design and best of all it doesn’t pinch or pull arm hairs!

    With wider/larger wrists watch buying can be a pain in the butt; the band doesn’t fit at all or is too snug, there’s usually no way to extend it and then who wants to spend hours shopping for something they won’t be able to wear? With MVMT’s adjustable band I was able to extend the wrist size so that the watch fit comfortable and wasn’t too snug or pinching skin. And the little tool they include in the packaging made adjusting the band easy peasy!

    Can I also point out that this beautiful watch is quite eye catching? I received several compliments on this time piece during my shoot in the city; I’ve had vintage loving friends ask where I’ve found the retro beauty and I’ve had male friends ask if they have similar designs for them!

    Truly happy to have found not only a watch that has an adjustable band so it fits larger wrists but also that the design is so classic yet modern that it truly captures the essence of my style. I’ve found my everyday watch and now it’s your turn!

    To shop MVMT use this link : MVMT and enter code katstroudofficial15 for $15 off that purchase!

    Until next time my Loves,

    Kat XO

    *The link above is an affiliate code which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate y’all!*

    Plus Size Fashion, Reviews

    Getting In To The Holiday Spirit With Curve Girl

    There is just something about sequins that enhance a look and make it a tad more festive and this gorgeous sequined beauty from Curve Girl has me feeling holly & jolly for this Holiday season!

    What I love about this dress is that the gold and white color combo just scream timeless style to me! I also love the whole length sleeve that’s also embellished with sequins. The length of this dress is absolutely perfect for me even at my petite 5’1 height, the hem falls just at the knee and don’t even get me started on how hard it is to find a dress that falls perfectly at the knee when you are so short lol!

    I have to throw in as well: when I’ve worn sequined garments before I’ve had to deal with the little itchy strings underneath because the garment just wasn’t lined or finished properly. With this dress I didn’t have a single issue like that, comfortable to wear and no little strings on the inside to drive ya crazy!!

    Another feature I love is how light weight this dress happens to be; I’ve worn full sequined outfits and sometimes those babies can get HEAVY to wear, especially if you are out and about on the town with friends so I absolutely loved that it felt like I was wearing a simple T-shirt dress. I was bummed to find the back of the dress didn’t hold any embellishments but when wearing a coat or sitting down the extra embellishments could have caused snagging and catching so I can understand why they didn’t carry the design over to the back.

    I can’t wait to style this beauty over and over again! Let’s face it – every woman needs that stunning show stopping piece and this little dress just happens to fit that bill in an understated way!

    To shop Curve Girl: Shop Here

    Shout out to @JasonBrucePhotography for capturing this set at my bestie’s house (House Of Winter).

    Until Next Time My Loves,

    Kat XO

    self love

    Fighting Seasonal Depression

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    I have to tell you Loves, every year around this time I experience seasonal gloomies (meaning my depression/seasonal affective disorder rears its ugly head with the oncoming change of winter season). My drive and motivation go out the door, I have no will to socialize or post on my media because it just feels too forced, my patience and tolerance reach an all time low, and I tend to hermit myself inside and cut out the outside world. And honestly, I’m ready to pull myself out of it and rejoin the land of the living by deciding to write about it! So I thought I’d share a few tips and tricks of mine to that have helped me deal with this gloomy time of year for anybody else who may be experiencing this as well.

    Revamp Wardrobe: First clear out and donate anything in your closet that doesn’t fit! Trying on clothes that don’t fit have negative side effects to your mental health so get rid of those “just need to loose 10 more lbs” outfits. Now, as a small family with only a single income our budget can get pretty tight so I’ve found two easy ways to reinvest in my wardrobe; first up is fabric dye – an easy and wonderful tool to change those warn garments from old to like new! I tend to use R.I.T. fabric dye, you can find in most grocery stores or here: Fabric Dye

    I’ve also found that changing the length of a garment can also dramatically change the appearance so by using a little double-sided fabric tape you can easily change up a garment any time you choose! My favorite product to use is Sticth Witchery for this particular wardrobe revamp! You can usually find this in craft stores or this link here: Fabric Tape

    Reach Out To Friends and Leave The House: This one can definitely be difficult, it’s one of the harder steps for me to take when I’m stuck in the blues, so this is why I think it’s so important to include. It’s easy to seclude yourself but the truth is when you’re feeling down like this the comfort and company a friend or family member can provide can only help your frame of mind. Go out for coffee, meet up at a park for a walk, or stop at your favorite restaurant for dinner! Now notice I mentioned activities that involve leaving the house? Why might you ask? Because you need fresh air and warm sunshine, it’s been proven that these two elements can help influence you in the right direction towards a positive frame of mind.  Not quite ready to venture out? That’s ok too. Try bringing the inside to you, like maybe purchasing a plant or if you have no green thumb like me lol succulents? Having a little green inside will definitely help your mood by brightening up those surroundings!

    Treat Yourself: Now before you go buying a whole new wardrobe I need you to know I’m not just speaking about monetary items to splurge on for yourself, don’t get me wrong if you’ve got it splurge away Honey! BUT I’m talking about carving out an hour a day to take a little YOU time. This can mean reading a book, face mask session while soaking in the tub, a visit with your therapist, meditating, walking your dog at the park, even just a nap from your chaotic life can do wonders when you’re feeling stressed and over worked. This step has become vital for me, as a new mom I began to feel like my identity was being overrun and there was only a mom there. This kind of negative thinking didn’t help me or my family, so with a little help from my wonderful husband I carved out a little time for myself every day and I’ve spent that time reconnecting with hobbies, friends, and rediscovering my passion – one hour at a time 😉 One way I like to pamper myself? I give myself a little manicure and will paint my nails in a fun shade that makes me happy, one of my favorite polish brands to use would be EMMA V.S.N.P.
    As you can see I love the colors lol which is why I’m wearing two!
    You can shop the link here: Nail Polish

    Tidy Up: I tend to be horrible with this one, when I’m down and just feeling blue I have no desire to clean so the chores tend to build up and then who doesn’t get even more depressed surrounded by messes? So cleaning up your living space is essential. I tend to go nuts with organizers, so I’ve included the link for my favorite bathroom organizer for you Loves. Clean out the clutter and junk, dust those shelves, do those dishes and laundry, and don’t forget to open up a window or two to let in that fresh sunlight.

    A little something to help the de-clutter process: Rolling Storage Cart

    Make The Conscious Decision To Work For Happiness: It’s never easy to just “buck up” when you are dealing with issues like being stuck in a funk, and honestly when people tell me to do this and I’m experiencing this issue I feel it’s downright insensitive. What you can do is make the honest effort to pull yourself from that funk. It’s downright easy to wallow in misery, don’t put yourself through that, feel your pain and acknowledge it. Then make the decision that today will be better than yesterday and put your all in to making that statement a reality! It won’t always be easy but know you are worth every effort.

    Those of you who may also be suffering from SAD, what has helped you?
    Kat XO

    *The links above are affiliate codes which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate y’all!*

    Plus Size Fashion, Reviews

    CurveGirl Review: Cropped Comfort Romper

    I have to tell you Loves of my new obsession! The CurveGirl Cropped Comfort romper is a literal dream; from the harem style pants, to the three quarter sleeves, to the easy snap in the back that made getting in and out of this baby a piece of cake!

    Did I mention that this black beauty has pockets? Yup, nice big pockets that fit my iPhone. I also loved the lower scooped neckline – when combined with the strap and snap in the back it made this one piece easy to get in and out of but still looked stylish. I love function-able fashion 😉

    Now, I will say that I’m a petite 5’1 so the hem of the pants ended up being not so cropped for me but with the fall weather upon us I was actually happy of this fact because it made it warmer to wear and still lite enough to not need a jacket.

    Now for the styling portion; I decided to keep things minimal and simple to match the effortless design of the romper, when styling I accessorized with a pair of Lane Bryant sunnies, silver and turquoise accent jewelry and added the blue heels to coordinate with my jewelry. Combined with a messy bun and nude lip I was able to accomplish a stylish and chic look for a lunch out with the girls in no time!

    To shop this look : CurveGirl

    Until next time Loves,

    Kat XO

    Plus Size Fashion

    Playful Promises x Gabi Fresh: Review

    Feminine with a touch of strength. I absolutely loved my two pieces from the recent Gabi Fresh x Playful Promises collaboration. In these shots I’m wearing the high waisted pink thong and the Morgan harness.

    In honor of being so close to Halloween I decided to get a little witchy with this Boudoir set!

    Now for the details:

    The sizes range from US 12-24, bra sizes 36-38B, 40-44 C-I. The high waisted thong I’m wearing is a size 20 and fit perfectly! The delicate lace edge rested exactly where it should have, the high waisted detail was perfect to wear under the harness and I loved the high waisted retro feel to it!

    Shop this Collection here: Playful Promises

    Now for my favorite piece! The beautiful Gabi Fresh Morgan harness! This strappy wonder was gorgeous on but when shooting was a pain to keep all those straps straight, the added detail of the collar at the top was a favorite feature for me. That sexy line peeking out from navel to neck was just fabulous and made me feel uber sexy. The hooks in the back made it easy to get on by myself and the adjustable straps made sure everything fit perfectly.

    I also loved the garter feature, being able to snap on to a pair of thigh highs definitely takes this look from ultra sexy to ultra sultry in .2 seconds!

    If you see something you Love, don’t wait! I have a feeling the pieces won’t last long!

    Shop here: Playful Promises

    Until next time Loves,

    Kat XO

    * The links above are affiliate codes which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate you Loves!

    **images by House Of Winter

    Lifestyle, Reviews

    Big Fig Mattress Review : Designed For Larger Bodies

    I don’t know about you Loves, but I’ve always had a love / hate relationship with my bed. My bed is what I consider my sanctuary – I LOVE to sleep, I love to dream, and let’s face it a lot of intimacy happens in the bed. But as a plus size woman, well, let’s just say it’s hard to find a mattress that doesn’t start to dip after six months; or in my husband’s case (who happens to be over 6ft tall) has trouble just fitting without having his heels hanging over the edge.

    So that’s why I’m so excited to introduce Big Fig Mattress to you Loves!! A mattress, box springs, and foundation designed with larger bodies in mind. I’m talking about specially made with Big and Tall folks in mind!

    Now before we dive further in to this review I want to let you Loves know to use discount code: KATSTROUD to save a little on your mattress!

    Shop here: Big Fig Mattress

    Now Loves, let’s get real before I tell how you amazing my Big Fig is. How many of you have dealt with horrible dips in the mattress and are constantly trying to flip it or rotate the mattress to keep it feeling right? How about the crazy amount of sound the springs will make when you shift or roll over or get out of bed? How many of you experience serious back pain as soon as you wake up from what’s supposed to be a “restful” sleep?

    I understand all of this because usually after a few months this is how my mattress ends up being. Then add in a little co-sleeping with a baby girl squeezed in between her parents and you have a recipe for constant back pain, squished in quarters and bruises from tiny flailing limbs!

    I’ve also experienced some pretty serious injuries that left my right shoulder the ability to dislocate when ever it’s too strained and a pinched nerve in my upper back. I also had a spinal tap and epidural when I had my daughter and have had pretty regular lower back pain (or mommy hip flairs I’ve heard them referred to).

    So a lumpy, weak mattress with no support is the last thing my back needs.

    And then here comes Big Fig Mattress with a game changer!!

    Here’s What I Love:

    • High quality material use that helps prevent sagging and poor support which results in less shifting.
    • The foundation supports 5x the normal weight of standard bed foundation.
    • Thermogel that helps keep body temps down.
    • And they offer a 20 year free repair & replacement warranty.
    • The Best Sleep I’ve Ever Had!
    • The king provides plenty of room for the early morning family snuggle sessions .
    • Before my Big Fig Mattress I would constantly toss and turn, I’d get over heated and would need at least one leg tucked out or I’d get night sweats and my poor back would ache almost constantly. Any time I’d move you’d hear the bed springs creak and groan, getting in and out of bed was never a quiet moment and my poor husband usually had to sleep a little diagonally so he’d fit (again over 6ft tall).
    • I’ve now had my wonderful mattress for two weeks and my back has never felt better! I’m sleeping through the night with out the constant toss and turn that I’m used too. I’ve had less headaches, my pinched nerve has been relaxed and my shoulder isn’t giving me such a hard time. And the only thing in my routine to change? Big Fig Mattress.
    • As a mother I can’t even begin to tell you how AMAZING a full restful night of sleep has made. I have way more energy during the day, my body is happier and feeling more energetic, my positive attitude has returned in full force without it being forced lol, and I’ve noticed how overall I just feel better.
    • My husband has experienced similar results: his knees usually ache and his lower back is pretty much in constant pain (he works at a job that has him in motion and doing regular labor intensive work), he usually has to sleep a little wonky so he fits on the mattress as comfortably as possible and use to snore very annoyingly haha!
    • After two weeks of using our Big Fig he’s noticed the swelling in his knees is significantly less. He’s not having night sweats (he could soak his sleeping shirt some nights) and he’s sleeping like a log with No Snoring. He doesn’t toss and turn constantly and his night sweats have all but stopped!

    if you are in the market for a new comfortable bed I would suggest Big Fig Mattress, hands down. Big, tall, plus or slim – this mattress is a thing of beauty that will provide such restful sleep that you’ll never want to sleep anywhere else!

    So until next time Loves,

    Kat XO

    And because my baby girl just loves to pose for the camera lol have to throw in this little blooper!

    *Big Fig Mattress was gifted to me but all opinions of mine listed here are genuine. The link above is an affiliate code which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate y’all!*

    Plus Size Fashion

    Where is the Body Diversity when it comes to Photography Art?

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    I have a bone to pick with designers/creators/costumers: where are the fat bodies at? I’m not talking about slim bodies in fat suits or making a joke out of plus bodies. No, what I’m referring to are the stylish campaigns like we see with high fashion events and magazine editorials. Now a dear friend of mine would tell me to stop complaining and do something about changing this situation – so Tami (my bestie and go-to photographer) of  House Of Winter   and I decided we would do just that! I’d provide the voluptuous body and Tami not only created the head piece but she also customized the swimsuit…oh, and she did my makeup! Now I would like to point out that Tami has been creating amazing looks and costumes for me for five years now and as a photographer and designer she is all about shooting all shapes, sizes, and walks of life and has been creating her art for many years!

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    Every element of this image from the pose to the costume to the background to the way she shot this image and edited it; it truly is a work of art and *gasp* it’s on a plus body! So I decided to pick Tami’s brain and get her input as a creator and fabricator – What gives? Why do we not see more plus bodies in these fantasy/costume editorials, why do so many designers and creators leave out the plus? And her response wasn’t a surprise. It’s not so much about the cost of the extra fabric or materials (because it’s very small), it’s the amount of effort that goes in to costuming a bigger body: patterns have to be adjusted, embellishments take more time because there is more real estate to cover, and designs HAVE to be tweaked to make the fit right. So you may be asking yourself, what’s the big deal with having to add a little extra effort in to creating a look for a plus body?  It took Tami almost the same amount of time to create this look as she did for a size 2 model also shooting this series, she had to spend a little bit longer on my suit only because there was more fabric to cover. Now, this might not ring true with other designers or creators but it does make a little sense when you consider “mainstream plus fashion” labels and how a lot of the times the patterns are very obviously not altered in places they should be and how many brands are all about the fast way of getting that money by cashing in on the BoPo community and truly not caring or considering their plus customers. A topic for another time 😉

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    Now I’m not saying there aren’t other photographers and designers out there creating beauty with bigger bodies, there are, but what I want to see is a body like mine in artistic campaigns and editorials that are introduced to mainstream media. I want to see runway shows with size 24 models rocking the runway with as much coverage as the VS Angels runway show, I want to see elaborate designs for plus size bodies and I want it to be in society’s face. Fat does not mean we are not beautiful. Plus size bodies deserve just as much adoration as thinner bodies and we are not going to allow to be hidden. So here I am changing the situation with the help of one incredibly talented friend, and we will continue to do so. I can only hope that with the body positive community demanding change that we will get to that point.

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    I’d love to hear what you Loves think – do you think we don’t see more plus size beauties in campaigns like this do to the extra cost, the extra effort it takes, or is it a bit of both? Disagree with me? I’d love to hear why!

    Kat XO

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    P.S. Hey Disney! I am so ready to be animated in to a princess – well Queen, I think we nailed the Queen look and I think the world is ready for a plus size Disney figure next to Ursula. What?! A lady can dream can’t she?

    Reviews

    Torrid: 50’s HouseWife Glam

    So for those of you who have been with me for some time know my passion for vintage and Pinup! Those of you just joining this program already in progress should know I LOVE Vintage and the fashion styles of the 20’s, 40’s, 50’s and 60/70’s. So any time I can go thrifting or antique shopping it’s a good day. Now with that being said – I do tend to search modern brands of plus size clothing for Pinup inspired designs and I have to say… My Loves, Torrid has yet again surpassed my lil plus size hearts desire!

    Now, I’ve always been a Torrid fan. Let’s face it, for quite some time Torrid has been one among a handful of (notice I said one of) plus size stores available to the plus community. In my eyes, they have been a beacon of hope for plus ladies like myself who desire FASHION and not shapeless sacks of fabric to adorn our bodies!

    I always enjoy shopping at Torrid. Why? Simple – fashion forward designs, patterns made for plus bodies, and a wide range of selections! Not to mention – the lighting and mirrors set up in the changing rooms are to die for! Yea, yea, yea chuckle a little at me, but all I’m saying is that the lighting is perfect for a selfie 😉

    Now for this beautiful dress! This beauty was apart of the Outlander limited collection that was released. The three-quarter sleeve and off the shoulder design compliment my arms, providing a classical type of coverage but cool enough to still wear in the summer and show off my body art. The length is actually perfect for me, which is surprising because this wasn’t part of the petite selections and I usually have to hem my dresses no matter where I get them. The satin fabric is luxurious and light weight so I didn’t feel like I was drowning in fabric. The full skirt of the dress is perfect for twirling and didn’t even need a petticoat fluffed underneath to give great volume!

    Now for those of you miffed that you can’t shop the exact design of this dress, I feel you, but check out the link below to see the other amazing designs and creations that Torrid offers and keep those eyes peeled here for more reviews and Pinup inspired goodness!

    Shop Here: TORRID

    Now on to a side note; I get asked often how I accomplish this gorgeous vintage up-do… If you are a real hair stylist then please don’t continue on…

    Pony tail & Foam Rollers! So not kidding lol in no way am I talented with the capabilities of being able to gorgeously style hair. So I literally brush my hair in to a ponytail on to the very top of my head (unicorn style) and slowly brush that puppy to my hairline then I add in foam rollers. Secure with hair scarf, unroll the foam monstrosities in the morning and voila! Throw in a few bobby pins to secure the curls strategically and add a little hairspray and it’s good to go! 😉

    Until next time my Loves!

    Kat XO

    Reviews

    April Showers, Bring May Flowers: Always For Me Swimsuit Review

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    I don’t know about you Loves but I have a bit of an obsession when it comes to vintage inspired fashion, I also collect actual vintage pieces but that’s for another day, so to say I adore this retro-feeling one piece is an understatement. Now I’m all for a bikini but there is just something timeless about this design in particular that speaks to my inner pinup.

    Now let’s talk details! One of my favorite features of this suit is the built in underwire bust support, as a woman who wears a 38 DDD this support is absolutely wonderful and completely took stress away from the straps so they weren’t putting any pressure on my shoulders. Which I’ve experienced with many swimsuits and usually results in a headache and a quick leave of the pool. And just throwing it out there but the added support made my cleavage look FABULOUS and was surprisingly super comfortable plus completely removable if you wanted to nix it.

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    The skirt of the swimsuit would have to be a second favorite detail, not only is the length perfect, but it didn’t feel heavy after soaking in the water and dried pretty quickly which would make the suit perfect for a small day trip to the boardwalk & beach. Usually if I plan on wearing a bikini I’ll bring a sarong or sundress to run around the arcade games and rides but in this cute piece I’d feel comfortable taking a dip and then heading straight to the games and hot dog stand. On a side not, just wanted to add that it’s not that I’m uncomfortable in a bikini, far from it but it can feel like I’m prancing around in my underwear from the lack of coverage once I’m away from the water and I just like to be covered a bit more when in the presence of families, totally a personal preference!

    I will say that this suit was one of the most comfortable I’ve worn in a long time. The briefs part of the suit never rode up or felt funky and chunky under the skirt, the built in support made it perfect for wearing for long periods of time, the fit was great and the adjustable straps helped immensely in guaranteeing a perfect fit.

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    Plus swimsuits can be difficult to shop for, especially when you happen to be petite, so as we approach Summer keep an eye out for future suit reviews and upcoming blog posts about my favorite places to shop for plus size swimwear. And please feel free to ask any questions you may have – I enjoy chatting with you Loves!!
    Kat XO

    *Suit pictured above is the Always For Me Plus Size Nicole Underwire Dress

    Always For Me

    Photographed by House Of Winter

    Lifestyle, Parenting, Publications, self love

    FabUPlus Summer ‘18 Digital Issue Giveaway

    So excited to share with you Loves a FREE digital copy of FabUPlus Magazine’s Summer 2018 issue featuring my article Breastfeeding: There Is No Shame, featuring original images shot by House Of Winter.

    The article delves in to the stigma formula feeding Mom’s face in public and my own personal experience with medical professionals .

    Click the link for your very own copy:

    FabUPlus Digital Issue

    Now, hopefully you Loves headed over and collected your own copy and meandered back this way for a bit more of an in-depth plunge in to the topic of this plus size mom who was unable to breastfeed and was shamed as a result.

    Three months after giving birth I was unable to continue producing breast milk, I was pressured to take prescriptions to induce lactation (that irritated an intestinal condition I deal with on the regular and mind you I was also healing from a c-section) that never worked and even tried herbal remedies (tea that tasted like I was licking the forest floor yuck- which is saying something because I LOVE tea!), I just couldn’t produce it. Mentally I was devastated – I was so prepared to be apart of this group of women who took part of a tradition that has been happening since the beginning of time.

    Then you factor in the hormones and changes my body was still going through after giving birth and then having to visit my OB or my daughter’s pediatric doctor: each visit would be bombarded with posters encouraging breast feeding, having to deal with every nurse asking repeatedly why I didn’t breastfeed my child and how much healthier it would be for her if I did, and I’d have to endure this speech and pressure until finally I’d be able to get a word in and tell them I physically couldn’t produce breast milk and boom! End of conversation. Beyond frustrating.

    I also had to deal with several public instances where I was told by a fellow shopper that I was “poisoning” my daughter and she’d end up unhealthy and fat like me. I had a cashier judgmentally ask me, “Haven’t you heard how bad it is to feed your baby this stuff?” And I’ve had acquaintances of friends feel free to comment about my lack of health awareness feeding my daughter formula – lack of health awareness meaning I’m fat of course. Insert biggest eye roll possible!

    With every frustration I faced I had my daughter’s healthy smile to beam back at me, for every nay-sayer that we encountered my daughter just proved them wrong with every milestone she hit and surpassed, and honestly, that’s the best mute button I’ve encountered to silencing people’s judgements when it comes to parenting.

    I’m interested in hearing from my fellow parents: when it came to feeding your little one did you experience any shame or societal pressure for your choices?

    Share your experiences below and I’ll make sure to join in on the convo!

    Until next time my Loves,

    Kat XO

    Plus Size Fashion, Reviews

    Eloquii Review: Peach Lift Dark Wash Jeans

    My Loves, have you ever had a pair of jeans that just fit so perfectly? No shimmying to get in to them, sculpted to your booty perfection, just the right length, make you feel powerfully sexy kind of jeans? No – well, don’t feel bad because up until the Dark Wash Peach Lift Jeans from Eloquii arrived in my life I was missing out too.

    To be completely honest with you Loves, if I could get my hands on five more pairs of these I’d throw out every other pair of jeans I own and only wear these, that’s how much I love them!

    Now let me tell you why:

    Eloquii has this amazing option of ordering from three length choices – short, medium, and long. Honestly this feature is a godsend for someone so petite like myself (just to remind y’all I’m only 5’1) because the hem of the pants actually fell to where it was supposed to be at my ankles.

    I’m usually a size 20 and having never ordered jeans from Eloquii before I went ahead and just ordered my true size and I’m so glad I did because the waist fit perfectly! No muffin topping, no squeezing, and buttoned without fuss.

    And because I’m such a pocket fan (as corny as that may sound lol) I loved the fact that the pockets fit my phone comfortably and didn’t bulge out funky if they happened to be empty.

    To shop for these amazing jeans click the here: ELOQUII

    Overall, I’d say I definitely have found my favorite pair of jeans not only because the fit is fabulous but because these jeans also make me FEEL confident. And let’s face it we should be wearing fashion that makes us feel something so why shouldn’t it be confidence?

    Until next time My Loves,

    Kat XO

    *The links above are affiliate codes which means I will earn a small commission which will help me to continue providing future content. Appreciate y’all!*