maternity clothes

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CityKids logoFor those of you in the Philadelphia area, South Philly’s CityKids Consignment Sale is tomorrow Saturday, September 13 from 10am-5pm and Sunday, September 14 from 10am-2pm. Many items will be 50% on Sunday, so come by early on Saturday to get all the really good stuff, and come back on Sunday to see what 50%-off steals you can find.

The non-consignor proceeds benefit the South Philly Parents Resource Center, so it all goes to a good cause. The SPPRC offers educational programming, new moms groups and other support to parents, and we recently received our 501(c)(3) paperwork. We are officially a non-profit organization! (And I’m Vice President!) This is only our second sale, but we are expecting over 6,500 quality, gently used toys, gear and clothes for your children, as well as some maternity clothes. The fall sale is appropriately dedicated to fall and winter clothes, Halloween costumes and other holiday items. Our spring sale is coming April, 2015.

The sale is free to enter and free to park! Thousands of name brands. Join us at Neumann Goretti High School on 11th St. between Moore and Morris.

SPPRC-kids-shirt_smAlso available for sale at this weekend’s CityKids Consignment Sale are the SPPRC fundraiser t-shirts designed by my talented husband Tim. The shirts come in three styles:

  • YO SOUTH PHILLY KID (toddler t-shirts – turquoise with black writing + onesies – black with silver writing)
  • YO SOUTH PHILLY MOM (dark gray with silver writing)
  • YO SOUTH PHILLY DAD (dark gray with silver writing)

The t-shirts will be on sale for $12 and the onesies are $15. We are running low on some sizes and will be making a new order soon. So, you may also sign up for a shirt you want and “pre-order” a sold-out size or size we didn’t order the first time around.

Check out Tim’s digital print designs on his etsy shop: Brothers Pannell

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The after effects of wearing non-maternity clothes during pregnancy  |

The same non-maternity top before and during pregnancy.

It’s now two years after giving birth and I still feel self conscious about some of my clothes. Prior to being pregnant I had a few empire-waist tops that I was able to wear well into my pregnancy. Also, when I was pregnant I purposefully purchased a few tunics that were non-maternity so I could continue to wear them after the baby was born. I thought I was being so resourceful–not having to spend as much on maternity clothes, I was buying clothes I’d be able to wear again.

Now though, when I wear those tops, I feel like I look pregnant. I feel like I look as if I’m hiding something. I worry people think I’m still wearing maternity clothes. And, now that I’m over two years out, I feel like I’m given looks of suspicion for pregnancy #2. (Of course, this could be completely unfounded paranoia. It’s just that I know myself and my group of friends and we have often joked about monitoring each other’s wine consumption at knitting to predict who the next expecting mom-to-be will be.)

The other day, I tried on one of the aforementioned tunics and asked Tim if he thought it made me look pregnant. He gave the very polite and politically correct response, “I think I just associate it with you being pregnant,” he said. Needlesstosay, I didn’t wear it that day.

So, my advice to the pregnant moms out there: while it’s great to be able to re-purpose your pre-pregnancy clothes as maternity wear, you may feel differently about the outfit postpartum. Maybe you won’t feel this way. Maybe you won’t feel that wearing those outfits as maternity clothes has tainted them forever. Maybe people in your office at work won’t remember that you wore that dress when you were pregnant. Or maybe you’ll just be better than me and not care what other people think.

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I’ve apparently come to the point in my pregnancy where I have to stop and ask, “What happened to my ankles?”  My doctor said it was to be expected as the weather got warmer. Traveling over Easter weekend seemed to make them worse.  Or maybe it’s just more noticeable now that it’s spring and I’m not wearing boots all the time.  I can see them in all their swollen glory throughout the day.

Swollen ankle while wearing shoes

Swollen ankles without shoes (you can still see the pattern of where my shoes were)

Hanging out with my knitting group last week, my mama friends told me it was time for compression hose.  Really?  I thought I could escape them.  I ended up ordering these on Amazon, and while I waited for them to arrive, I went to Macy’s and purchased these.

The Jobst thigh-highs arrived last weekend, and I definitely recommend the thigh highs over the full, tummy-panel hose.  Considering the number of times I have to use the restroom each day, I found it super annoying trying to get them pulled up.  (Part of this may be due to the fact that they weren’t “tall” sized and at nearly 6 feet tall, I need a few extra inches in length).  I had to really yank and pull to get them to fit without droopy crotch.  I ended up getting a run in them on day 2.

This week was 10 to 20 degrees cooler than the week prior, so although the swelling has gone down, I don’t know whether to credit the support hose or just the change in temperature.  Maybe it was a combination of the two. Whatever the cause, I did see relief in the swelling this week.  My ankle bone!  I can see you again!

I don’t expect this trend to last.  It’s only the beginning of May, so I can imagine the hotter months of June, July and August will bring back the swelling–especially since I don’t know how much I’ll actually be able to suffer the compression hose during those hot summer days.

For now I’ll continue to drink lots of water, prop my feet up while watching tv, wear the thigh-high support hose when possible, and savor the glorious  site of that narrow area where my calf and ankle meet.

Improved, "normal" ankles

One more quick thing, you know that Circle of Mom’s pink button you see in the top left column? I would be so appreciative if you would vote for me today (and tomorrow, and the next and the next…) You can vote every day from now until May 18 (you can also click the button below).  Being in the top 25 Pregnancy Journals will help me gain more readership, more subscribers, and more traffic to the site.  It also keeps me motivated to keep writing!  Thanks so much!


I was 22 inches long when I was born, and I’ve been tall ever since.  Buying clothes has been an issue for as long as I can remember.  Even in Jr. High I was buying pants and jeans out of the J.C. Penney Tall Catalogue.  It’s hard to find 12-year-old-appropriate styles out of the women’s J.C. Penney Tall Catalogue.  Since then, more stores have options for tall girls.  In high school, I discovered that Lerner sold pants in “long” styles.  More stores have jumped on board in the following years–The Gap, Express etc…

Still, finding Long pants and jeans isn’t always easy.  The Gap’s cutest slacks often come in only one length, and while living in Boston,  I once asked the clerk, “Why doesn’t Gap want tall girls to look cute?”  I think I surprised the college student working that day.  He wasn’t sure if I was joking or not and just shrugged his shoulders with a quiet laugh.

I didn’t think too much about having to find tall maternity clothes.  I guess I knew Gap had a small maternity selection, and I just figured they’d have pants in Long styles.  Which they do, fortunately.  I didn’t think about maternity tops and how I would need longer length shirts, especially later in my pregnancy.  Several posts back I mentioned my friend H gave birth to a beautiful daughter in November.  Like me, H is a tall girl.  She’s been great about giving advice on doctors and clothes, and I’m sure I’ll use her as a resource even more as the weeks progress.

Generously, H offered me the use of her maternity clothes and lent me a big storage container full of tops and pants and jeans.  And surprisingly, the pants are just my size–10 Long.  Hooray!!  I can save the $59.95 I spent on black boot cut pants for work and just wear the EXACT SAME pair in the EXACT SAME size from H’s stash.  Crazy, eh? I’m not showing too much yet, so I don’t need the full panel pants, but hell, if they stay up, why not wear them now?  I can’t seem to get my old pants buttoned and while the BeBand I got at Target has been a Godsend, it makes for a bumpy belly when I wear it over unbuttoned and unzipped work pants.  I’m liking the actual maternity wear even though I’m still growing into it.

As far as What not to wear when pregnant, I ran across this funny blog post a few months ago.