1. How do you both find time to go to the gym? I have two little ones and can’t seem to find time with their schedules (naps, music classes, etc), and needing to get errands done. My youngest is 8 months old and I still have baby weight to lose. Any tips would be much appreciated!
Meggan: When I lived in Chicago, I went mid-morning which I wasn’t really liking because it took up a big chunk of time before lunch/Cam’s nap. Plus Camden hattted going to the daycare. He would cry until I picked him up which made working out miserable. I always shortened them because I knew he was sad. Now I go in AM before Cam and Kyle are up and I love it. I started doing Orange Theory twice a week (the 6:15 class) and go to the gym twice a week (wake up at 6:15). I definitely miss sleeping in but it feels good to get it out of the way. Sometimes I even stop at the grocery store after so I don’t have to go during the day and it’s feels amazing to get both those checked off my list by 8am!2. Can you do a roundup of your favorite distressed denim shorts for spring/summer? Preferably a little on the longer side so nothing is hanging out while I run errands with my little one 🙂
I (Meggan) got these and love them (see them on me here). A few others are these Levi’s, this pair by Topshop, and this BlankNYC pair!
3. Not a very fun question (but you’ve given some great budgeting tips before), but do you ladies save for retirement?
Brooke: Yes. When I was working (before blogging) I maxed out my 401K each year that I could afford to – it may not seem that fun, but you’ll thank yourself later – at least I hope so ;). Now that we’re self-employed, I opened a SEP IRA account for retirement. I’ll be honest, depositing money into that account is kind of painful lol but I know it will be worth it for my future self/family! I would suggest talking to a financial advisor if you have any questions – finances can be intimidating, but so liberating when you’re in control (and understand) them!
Meggan: I also have a 401k from my former employers and I’m talking with my financial advisor right now about opening an account (similar to Brooke’s).
4. Brooke – based on the past posts I’ve realized we have very similar tastes in perfumes. I already own pretty much all of the scents you’ve mentioned. You posted about Tom Ford Santal Blush, which I do love but I feel like its a little strong/overpowering (and expensive, especially if I already feel unsure). Do you feel that way when you wear it or is it just me? I’m loving the sandalwood tones for my next perfume purchase so I was wondering if you knew of any similar that might not be as intense?
I love Santal Blush but your right, it’s super expensive for perfume. My husband gave it to me for Christmas, I don’t think I would have bought it for myself. However, I do love it and after having it, I can say I would re-purchase it for myself! It is stronger than other fragrances which also means it lasts longer – something about the oil content (I can’t remember exactly what it is!) in Tom Ford’s perfume is more concentrated which is why it’s more expensive. I honestly only use one spray and that’s enough for a full day. If you’re unsure about it I would go to Nordstrom and ask them to create a sample for you (it’s a pretty big sample) so you can try it out to see if you like it or not! I’m not sure of any similar scents off the top of my head, but this one sounds amazing (I love Nest Fragrances as well), and although it’s not sandalwood the MK one we posted about a few weeks ago has been my daily go-to recently. Meggan and I are both obsessed with it – but it’s definitely not sandalwood, so if that’s what you’re looking for I would try the Tom Ford sample or the Nest one! Hope that helps!
We love this one, this one, this one (comes in so many colors), and this one (obsessed)!6. Heading on family vacation to the beach next month and wondering what sunscreen you like best for your kids?
Meggan: I use Alba Botanica on Cam and love it! He’s never been burnt and it’s chemical free!
Brooke: I used Supergoop on myself & my girls in Miami (I loved it and it was great for Sophia), but Avery kept having a reaction when it got close to her eyes (I think it was getting in her eyes when she would rub her eyes with her hands), so I’m looking for a different one for her this summer. I’ll have to try the one Meggan suggested.
For a night out – this dress (looks just like Alexander Wang but under $100!), this dress, this one, and this one – all super fun! For days by the pool we love this dress, this suit, and this coverup.8. My husband and I are going to Chicago in May for a long weekend. This will be the first time we are away from our daughter (23 months). I would love any suggestions for restaurants/shopping/things to do. Thank you!
West Loop has so many amazing restaurants and fun spots to get a drink so I would definitely hang out in there one night. A few of my favorites are Girl & The Goat, Bar Sienna, Formentos, Momotaro, Duck Duck Goat, and Parlor. So many new ones have popped up since I moved so I would definitely too. A few other favorite spots are RPM Italian, GT Fish & Oyster, Big Star (the best margs!), and Sunda. You should definitely get a drink at The Signature Room (95th floor at the John Hancock) – it has the most amazing views of the city! Shopping you should hit up Michigan Ave (touristy but something you kind of have to do) or Bucktown has good shopping too! Old Town and Lincoln Park are fun neighborhood to explore too (go to Armitage Street they have so many cute shops and restaurants!). You should see if movies in the park start by the time your there – they are so fun!
9. I’m a bridesmaid in a wedding in Colorado this July. This is the dress I’m wearing (in coral) and the bride wants us to wear a nude shoe in any style we want. Can you give me some suggestions on flats and heels that would be comfortable and look good?
You could wear something classic like this or this (the block heel would probably be more comfy!) or do something fun like this! For flats we love this pair and this pair – both are so fun and could be worn all the time after the wedding!
10. Any new recipes you’ve tried lately that are good? I love when you post what you’re making on insta!
Meggan: I am obsessed with this spaghetti squash pad thai – I make it at least once a week. This grilled salmon is so good (I added jalapeño to the mango salsa for a little kick) and so are these thai chicken lettuce tacos.
Brooke: I love this clean cashew chicken, and my sweet potato, egg, avocado bowl (you’ve probably seen it on insta stories lol). I’ve had so many questions about the recipe so here it is: sauté sweet potato in avocado oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, red chili flakes & anything else you like, add (cooked) brown rice and stir together, once that is done, make room for an egg in the same pan, cook the egg over easy/medium or fried (runny yolk is key), combine everything in a bowl and top with avocado! SO good & healthy. I’ve had it for lunch every day this week.
11. I have a trip to DC in a couple weeks that will involve LOTS of walking/sightseeing + nights out, so I need versatile outfits that go with comfy shoes and maybe a cute backpack? Any outfit suggestions/bag? I’m not really a sneakers person!
We would probably do comfy dresses (here, here, and here) and bring a denim jacket (love this one) to throw on if it gets chilly. You could do comfy sandals if you’re not a sneaker person! For a backpack – I have this one and love it, highly recommend it!
12. I’m a personal attendant in a wedding this June. The bride would like me to wear a dress in any shade of blue or purple (the main wedding color is navy). Any suggestions for a dress under $100?
A few we think would be super cute are: this ruffle one, this lace midi, this off-the-shoulder, another pretty lace option, and this tulle dress (fun and girly!).
13. I’m on the hunt for a new coffee table and would love to know where you both got yours and if you have any others you are loving?
Brooke: Both of mine are from RH – one is super old, I don’t think they even make it anymore but it’s similar to this, and this is the other one – I love it, but it’s impossible to keep clean with little hands! This coffee table is soooo cool, and this one is a super cool budget-friendly option!
Meggan: I put two tables together (see pic here) and they’re both from West Elm – shocker, my house could be WE showroom lol. Here is the tall one and this is the short one. A few others I’ve spotted and loving are this, this (why so expensive ughhh), and this one (obsessed with mid-century furniture).
14. I just recently got promoted to nurse manager!! I’ve never had to wear business clothes to work since I’ve always worked in scrubs. What are some stylish yet hospital appropriate outfits?
Congratulations! We loooove these pants (they come in so many different colors & patterns) – wear them with loafers (we love these and these) for a young + fun look, this blouse is great, this skirt in yellow is so fun for spring/summer, and we would pair it with a long sleeve blouse (like this one – if you look closely you can see it has yellow on the stripes, so fun!).
15. My closet, under the bed bins, and dresser are filled to the max. How do you determine what to purge, what to keep and what to box up for storage?
Meggan: I used to have the hardest time letting go of clothes! I usually end up purging trendy/cheap clothes (Forever21, H&M, etc) that I know I probably won’t wear next season or items I haven’t worn in over a year.
Brooke: Same, I’ve gotten better in recent years. I agree with Meggan – the first things I get rid of are the cheap + trendy pieces I know I won’t be wearing again. I don’t really keep anything for storage (other than bags). I donate most, sell some, and trash things really need to go and aren’t in good enough shape to be donated.
16. I have an Alexander McQueen silk scarf (dark camo colored green with black skulls). I’ve had it forever and NEVER worn it because I just don’t know how! Any suggestions?
That color combo sounds amazing! For spring/summer we love this look and this look– casual with a basic top and cute shorts! You could also pair it with a simple maxi like this. Let the scarf do the talking since it’s a statement piece!
17. I’m on the lookout for a pair of cute, versatile flats to wear to work (flats b/c I’m super tall – 6’2″ and live in NY so comfort is key!). I know there are tons of options, but I wear a size 12-13. Any hot tips on shoes that aren’t hideous for a tall girl?
If you want to splurge, these loafers come in a size 12 (love). These are so cute (saw them in store today), and we also love this pair (so many fun color options) & this pair – love the blush!
Leave your questions below or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org with #coffeetalk in the subject! xx