what I won't be wearing to Edel (and five things I will) / five faves

When my sister gave the matron-of-honor toast at my wedding, one of her bits about me described my hunter-like clearance-rack shopping habits--by which I not only got great deals, but found quite fabulous clothes and shoes. I often had so many clothes, in fact, I'd pass them along to my her or my mother.

"Mary doesn't give hand-me-downs," she said. "She gives hand-me-ups."

Fast forward five years. From the driver's seat of my used minivan, I now make longing glances to Nordstrom Rack when passing it on the freeway. I can't remember last time I bought a new pair of heels. My local consignment store (perfect for finding discounted, brand-name transitional wardrobe clothes) hasn't seen me in months, since they don't carry maternity sizes.

I don't write this with self pity. A single girl lives mostly for herself, spends her money on what makes her happy, and makes looking good a priority. I did those things. Found a terrific man, got married. Breeeeeeeezed through my first pregnancy with all-new or mostly-new maternity clothes. Sweet.

Fast-forward to today. Now, I'm on:
1) baby #3
2) a budget
3) a collision-course with humility.

In two weeks I'm attending that Edel thingy. Judging by the excitement surrounding what to wear and when by the other attendees, I'm pretty sure that many ladies are bringing their a-game to Austin.

At this stage of my life and gestational status, my "a-game" consists of thrift-store Motherhood cotton shift dresses (size large pleeeease) and the least-stained Liz Lange t-shirt I can find. Seriously, what is it about a protruding belly that attracts stains? It doesn't matter whether I'm cooking, eating or cleaning. Each event draws balsamic vinaigrette to my bump with a blinding magnetic force.

Weirdly, I'm un-panicked about this. I've read about attendees having enthusiastic conversations on Facebook discussing their options for footwear. Some have posted pictures of their dresses. Some have rejoiced over finding awesome shoes.

Not me. I'll be 24 weeks pregnant in 100 degree Texas heat. I'll be lucky if I can actually see my feet and stop sweating long enough to put on fresh clothes. That will have to be good enough.

I'm not saying it's impossible to look utterly fabulous as a pregnant lady--picking up a People Magazine will easily prove otherwise. All it takes is an abundance of either money, time, or effort.

I'm short on all three.

But I will be bringing a few things from my Tried-and-True Arsenal of Good-Looking Things.

Maternity bathing suit (which, for this pregnant summertime momcation, I consider somewhat
more important than a good lounge dress). Check.

That beachy sea-salt hair spray thing that Heather loves (me too Heather ME TOO!!). Check.

My favorite perfume, which is getting a little low (birthday hint for my beloved, cough cough). Check.

A little See's in my carryon to share with my roomie. Check, oh yes check.

Most important, and most cheesy: A smile. A happy mom-taking-a-break smile. Check? Check.

So you'll see me in Austin. I may not be dressed to the nines, but hey, I'll most likely smell good, have a tan... and have dark chocolate smeared on my belly.

Linking up with the similarly good-smelling (and always fabulous) Mama H.


  1. Love this, Mary. Have fun!!

  2. I love finding Catholic blogs but I don't really enjoy it when they say things like "A single girl lives mostly for herself, spends her money on what makes her happy, and makes looking good a priority." I really wish Catholic wives/mothers would stop saying this sort of simplistic crap about single women. Maybe it applies to girls just out of college but single Catholic women who are trying to live Catholic lives are so much more than this. I don't know why y'all have to perpetuate this notion and set up a divide between single Catholic women and married Catholic women. It's really heartbreaking when you're single.

    1. Hi Sophie. So sorry you took issue with the post.