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Above: Central Park, in full fall regalia.
My Latest Snags.
My main shopping achievements this week was ordering this tweed Saloni (I’m tempted to bring it with me on an upcoming trip to wine country, but I know it’s not the vibe there…just want to wear it so badly!) and snagging of the Hill House tartan dresses — the Vivi, before it sold out, but returns do come through so I would check back if you’re passionate. (I also found their sold-out-in-minutes equestrian print in stock at Shopbop!) My runner up pick was going to be this Naomi dress. I always feel compelled to caveat my nap dress purchases because I know some Magpies are deeply fatigued of the style/hype. But I love tartans, and I am still drawn to the comfort and silhouettes of these dresses! Wear what you love, etc.
I also restocked my gift closet with a few new gifts for six/seven year olds, including this puffy sticker making set (love the Klutz brand! it’s been around since I was little!), this Lego chain reaction kit, and these Usborne sticker books, which my children still love. ICYMI: I did a very thorough/detailed post on my gift closet here last week, including my favorite gift wrap, my secret source for ribbon (if you’re in the DC area), go-to gifts, etc.
Finally: replenished my supply of my favorite pens. Like Christmas morning!
This Week’s Bestsellers.
Love (!) all the cozy, hygge picks from this week. Do I need these SLVRLAKE crops, too?!
01. SAVE THE DUCK PUFFER // 02. JOHN DERIAN FOR TARGET PLATES // 03. EVERLANE FLEECE // 04. SLVRLAKE LONDON CROPS // 05. LAKE PAJAMAS RELAX SET // 06. MADEWELL FLATS // 07. DORSEY TENNIS BRACELET // 08. FRANK & EILEEN FUNNEL NECK CAPELET // 09. BEST PENS EVER // 10. ELIZABETH HARBOUR TREE TOPPER // 11. J. CREW STEVIE BOOTS // 12. PAINT BY STICKER BOOK // 13. LA LIGNE MINI MARINA SWEATER // 14. LAKE CARDIGAN
Weekend Musing: Is It Harder for Me?
Earlier this week, I was texting my Internet friend Alex about being a part of a large family (she’s one of seven, her husband’s one of six, and they have four children together), and she said: “It’s like when people see me with my kids and they’re like ‘Oh gosh, I only have two and I think it’s hard,’ and I’m like YEP IT IS. No matter how many kids you have, it is all hard. Just in different ways.”
I thought first (and told her so!) how gracious she was to say that. When you have one or two children, and you’re in conversation with women who have multiples of that, you can occasionally feel as though you don’t have a leg to stand on in conversation. Or at least I have felt that way — as though I’m out-ranked, out-mothered, out-tenured, and certainly shouldn’t be the one talking about how challenging parenting can be. This has occasionally led me to ask, “Is it just harder for me? Does it come more naturally to other women?” And, in a certain sense, I think my reactions are fair. Those women have smoothed more foreheads than I have and have also experienced different challenges that I will never face. (They’ve also lived through more pregnancies and newborn phases than I have, and that is hard, no matter how you slice it.) I remember my mother saying that she felt going from two to three children was one of the most challenging transitions because “I could no longer hold each child’s hand at the same time.” I think of that sometimes when I’m walking down the street with my two. What would it be like to have a third, or fourth, or fifth trailing behind? What if all three need to hold my hand at once? What if we were in a crowd? I’m sure mothers with more children have devised their own solutions, coping mechanisms, strategies, perspectives on all of this. On that point, I have observed, too, that women with big families tend to be less flustered — maybe they’ve just seen it all and know it will all be fine, but I’m still laboring under the misapprehension that with enough effort, I can prevent my son from sprinting around Glen Echo refusing to wear shoes (this did happen) or can keep my children quiet in Church (rarely the case) or show up to a birthday party with everyone perfectly dressed and coiffed (nope). Or maybe they’ve resigned themselves more gracefully to the experience of living in the chaos of raising children? (With fewer kids, you can still sometimes believe you’re able to paper over the mess…?)
But coming back to Alex, I have to say that I felt reassured by her statement: “It’s all hard.” And, like, why was I even thinking in terms of comparison in the first place? Certainly it is important to think about how others are experiencing the world differently, and to exercise perspective on my own circumstances, but I can only live my own life, in my own lane, as openly and fully as possible. And I can tell you that having two children is emotionally, physically, and intellectually demanding.* Moreover, there are no economies in challenge — or in love for that matter. No matter how many children you have, you love them all. Equally, no matter how many children you have, it’s challenging. What I mean to say is: the math in this matter is binary rather than complex. It’s all love; it’s all hard.
*I know I do not need to caveat this in the company of Magpies, but just a flag to say I still know, even in the challenging moments, that all of it — every midnight wake-up, every diaper rash, every bathtime — is a wild privilege.
+My favorite clean mascara (and lots of other clean beauty favorites) is 20% off here, as is all Westman Atelier. I still love their foundation stick — I use it any time I am going out in the evening / need more coverage than my “quick, five minute makeup routine.”
+Also, my mom came by for lunch and was literally SPEAKING IN EXCLAMATION POINTS about Westman’s brow pencil. I also ordered this a few months ago but wasn’t as crazy about it as I was the Kosas Airbrow, which is sort of a swiss army knife for brows (fills, shades, gels). But now I’m intrigued by my mom’s rave review. You would have thought she was talking about finding a cashmere sweater on sale for $30 at Lord and Taylor (this is normally more in the vein of shopping excitement for her).
+I am pretty sure I will have ordered this chic dress for myself by the time you’re reading this — it’s currently 20% off when added to cart. I have been trying to find some dresses that are good for layering — beneath sweaters, jackets, etc — and love this one.
+Fun pop of red sweater at a good price.
+A fun family card game we’ve been into lately. Speaking of games, I frequently field the question: “What was that game you and Mr. Magpie like to play?” It’s Azul! THE BEST. We still play most weekend mornings.
+These chic cashmere knit sets from Kilte (and lots of other great knitwear) are currently on sale. I mentioned last week that a girlfriend showed up to dinner wearing the black one with Chanel flats and a silk scarf around her neck and looked beyond stunning. She messaged me this week to say she bought another color while on sale! And my favorite hot pink cardi is included (see me in it here).
+My favorite wool cape (see me in it here!) is still available in most colors/sizes after a recent restock, but my friends at Alice Walk just let me know that they will be increasing the price on November 1 to $495. If you have your eye on one…now is the time.
+Carolyn Bessett Kennedy territory for under $250. WOW.
+Hanna Andersson is offering 40% off sitewide, including off their holiday jammies — they have lots of cute options, including many Hanukkah themed ones, which I know can be hard for my Jewish friends to find.
+OMG these sequinned ballet flats for our minis!
+Perfect under-$100 platforms for fall looks.
+Remember Spirographs? Just added to my “rainy day activity” bin.