Babies in Bikinis: Is This a Problem?

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Frida in Hawaii, May 2013

I recently saw the cutest tie-die baby bikini on Amazon. We’re heading to the Hamptons in June for a warm weather getaway, and we’ll be at the beach a lot, so I’ve been thinking about getting Frida and myself suited up. This particular toddler bikini was reversible to an adorable boho pattern, so while it seemed a little much to spend on a 2-year-old’s bathing suit, it was really two for the price of one (always rationalizing). So I purchased it. When it came in the mail I was so overcome by its cuteness that I took a picture and posted it on Instagram and Facebook, like any good social-media-obsessed mother would.

I quickly got what seemed like disapproving comments on Facebook. I was 100% confused for a minute. I hadn’t linked to Amazon or mentioned the price, so that couldn’t be the issue. Then it hit me. Is a bikini inappropriate for a little girl? Am I a bad mother for buying her one? OMG? But wait, why? Are you telling me an exposed baby tummy is somehow… it pains me to say it… sexual? Is that it?
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I Have So Many Feelings About Shorts

Levis shorts and a bike
All photos courtesy of Levi’s

I used to love cutoffs. What could be more boho-chic than frayed denim shorts with a low-heeled sandal and a flowy top? But sometime in my 30s, I started to not love the way my legs looked in shorts and I vowed to simply never wear them again.

But when it’s hot outside, and you’re on the East Coast like I will be in June, cutoffs feel like just the thing, don’t you think?

Levi's 501 shorts

I thought dresses could fulfill the hole left when shorts left my life, but sometimes you want that low-slung, cool-girl look that a dress cannot manage. So I’m re-considering my vow, especially after seeing these cute ones at Levi’s. They’re the right length (because my days of bootie shorts never even happened), and this denim plaid 501 version. And if Jennine at The Coveted can learn to love shorts, maybe I can too?

I like these orange ones a lot too:

orange levi's shorts

Don’t worry, I’m not going to throw on shorts willy nilly. I’ve enlisted my yoga instructor and former trainer of NYC publishing elite Wini Linguvic to help me tone up the gams a bit before I go showing them in the light of day. She’s given me some homework (hint: copious lunges) that she says can help even me. And to stay motivated, I created this Pinterest board to obsess over. Fingers crossed my American thighs will be ready by June 11.

This post was sponsored by Levi’s.

A Case for Counting Calories

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All those teaberry ice cream cone calories went straight into My Net Diary! Photo by my awesome cousin Bobbi Ann Bowen

It’s probably the least popular method for losing weight, because reality is just not that much fun. Admitting that you have to eat less and exercise more to lose weight is a truth that most of us, including myself, don’t like to face. But it’s how our bodies work, like it or not.

I’ve written about this before, yet I recently fell for another trick: I cut out all sugar from my diet for two weeks, expecting the pounds to fall off. I gained 4 pounds.

The problem is, tricks don’t work—except, of course, the tricks that actually result in eating fewer calories, which is what some of the low-carb, Weight Watchers and other methods do. But I find it so much more straightforward to simply log my caloric intake. You have control—you’re not relying on someone else to provide your food, or following some mysterious and weird regimen. People will try all sorts of complicated plans, from cleanses to paleo, anything but keeping an honest tally of how many calories they’re eating and burning off. It’s a little too real.

Don’t take my word for it, experts say the same thing. A calorie is a calorie. Some calories taste better than others, and some are better for your health than others. But, bottom line: if you eat more of them than you burn off, they will turn into fat. I know, bummer.

But, chin up, it can be fun to take control of your body by counting your calories! Recently, my scale approached my heaviest weight since back in college after I’d gained the freshman 15, and I wanted to nip that progression in the bud. Clothes weren’t fitting, I wasn’t eating healthy, and I didn’t feel good. So I started using My Net Diary (no, they are not sponsoring this post!). Over three weeks, I’ve lost about four pounds, and I’m committed to sticking to my plan.
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One Way to Stay Sane With a Newborn in the House

Baby Frida

Having a newborn infant in your charge takes over pretty much all of your senses. Everything becomes about making sure a helpless, tiny human’s needs are taken care of. You forget to eat, but you never forget to feed her. You are not sleeping, and when she’s sleeping, you’re watching to make sure everything is OK. Until your eyes finally shut involuntarily.

But listening to music, my husband and I found, is something you can fully enjoy amidst the craziness of newborn life. One of the best things we discovered during the first few months with Frida was the Rockabye Baby series. Pixies songs as lullabies? Yes, please! (Ana was my husband’s favorite, he loves it now more than the original.) It helped put her to sleep and it kept us sane.
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Baby’s First Kurta

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Photos by Kourosh Karimkhany

This is Frida’s first Modi Kurta (actually it’s by Gypsy Kids, scored at Zulily). I love her in boyish colors and styles accented by something super girly, like this very pink bow and sparkly sandals. I picked this outfit based on the pants, which were handed down by my most eco-conscious and super-stylish friend Amy. They are little fold-over stretchy harem pants! We went to Amy’s 6-year-old son’s birthday party on Saturday, which had a snake theme, complete with real snakes to “pet!”

I wore my applique maxi from ASOS (similar here) with my trusty low-top Converse Chuck Taylors and this T by Alexander Wang shirt scored at Nordstrom Rack (similar here). By the way, are you guys stoked for the A. Wang x H&M collab? Personally I’m getting burnt out on collabs. No more polyester/polymide versions of high end pieces, please! But if he uses natural fabrics I might be more enthusiastic.
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Stripes and High Tops

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Photos by Kourosh Karimkhany

We took a detour from our regular Pacifica haunts this weekend and found this sandy area, where a bunch of hang gliders were hovering around. Frida is learning approximately 100 words per day, some of which we can understand. “Daddy” is still her favorite, I try not to take it personally!

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Teva Is the New Birkenstock

comfy sandals
Last summer, the fashion set took a liking to the Birkenstock. We should have known it was going to happen when Chloe Sevigny bought a pair back in 2011 (I was also sporting them that year, see above). Then in 2012, Phoebe Philo at Celine and a few other designers featured  versions of the comfy sandal on the runway. Next thing you knew, the once-shunned sandal from Germany was seen on the likes of Ashley Olson (as early as summer ’12 actually), the Vogue set, and an editor at the publication I write for, Racked, let everyone know Birkenstocks are A-OK. I bought my first pair in the early ’90s when I moved to Boulder, Colorado (see my comfort below), and have been wearing them ever since. When I used to run marathons in the early 2000s, they were a delicious little massage for my battered feet after a run.

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The Most Authentic Beach Hair You Can Get Without An Ocean

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I am actually looking at an ocean right now, but it’s a very cold one, and it’s pouring rain outside. Basically there aren’t all that many occasions when dunking your head into the sea would be worth a coveted harido. Hence the “surf spray” phenomenon. But I never really got “texturizers” and the rest of those products that make sexy-messy hair promises. They all just made my hair limp and heavy.
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