Earthy and Expecting: Fruits of my labor (shopping labor, that is)

My epic shopping trip with bestie was nearly two weeks ago, but last week’s post had to be all about finding out the sex of our baby.

So this week, I’ll share with you my shopping adventure, including my first stroll down a maternity aisle.

I should immediately note that I love thrift stores (what earthy shopper doesn’t?), but in the interest of time, we decided to hit up the larger discount stores instead. I definitely plan to frequent some local consignment shops in the coming months, though, and am open to suggestions if readers have any faves.

First stop was to Central Market to see my guy (Normally I work Saturdays with Jon at the Charles Family Market stand — when I’m not shopping til I drop, that is.) Said hello to regulars and secured two chocolate peanut butter cup brownies from All About Brownies for the midday snack I knew we’d need.

Then, it was go time. Target. I started out by trying on a faux leather moto jacket that would never in a million years zip around my belly by the end of next month.

Put your hands up. Step away from the faux leather moto jacket. This is why you shop with your bestie. So those moments don’t destroy your morale right out of the gate.

Tunics and leggings and flats, oh my. And a baby bump. :)

Two racks later, it was clearance city, and I walked away with a few stretchy $3 tanks to layer under cardigans, a flowy chiffon dress that ties in the back, and an empire waist tunic in an Aztec print loaded with fall colors (later in the day, I found red flats and brown fleece-lined leggings to go with it. Score.). I splurged on two cardigans at full price, but is it a splurge if you can wear them year-round over 90% of the tops you own?

The maternity section was a bust for me. I didn’t try on any pants because the majority I found were yoga/lounge-y pants and I really want work pants. I’m told Old Navy has a great maternity section, so I’ll be heading there when the belly gets unwieldy. Plenty of cute tops in Target maternity, but I’d already made out just fine in the regular sizes, plus the maternity clearance was a lot more sparse.

Avoided housewares? Check. Bonus: found a new shoulder bag on sale, to replace my fave with the broken strap. Target = success.

Next stop, TJ Maxx. I love TJ Maxx. I love everything about it. We spent an hour loading up, then headed to the dressing room … where the electricity promptly went out! The torrential downpour of the afternoon’s thunderstorm took out the power in the whole plaza (soooo, no trip to Ross, either). We tried to wait it out, then laughed at the freakishness of this event and headed to Gabriel Brothers.

In the car, we decided two things: 1) The power outage may have been the universe’s way of preventing me from severely over-spending at TJ Maxx. In truth, I can’t remember anything I was going to try on, so how badly did I really want it? Plus, while I avoided housewares at Target, I never have that kind of willpower at the Maxx. Still, we’re planning a mulligan TJ’s outing at a later date. 2) All About Brownies makes the absolute most delectable and VITAL brownies on the planet.

Gabriel Brothers, if you’ve never been, is TJ Maxx meets thrift store. You have to dig, and some of the items are damaged, but you will find nice clothes and shoes for incredible prices. The aforementioned leggings and red flats were $8 each. I found mustard yellow moccasins and an olive green Dolman-sleeved top in the softest jersey material ever, among other essentials that I can wear for work or play. Bestie and I agreed that everything I bought can be worn through my third trimester and post-birth, and we left happy and exhausted and still financially intact. Plus, my morale is totally up. No matter how big I get, I have — and know I can find more — inexpensive but cute clothes.

What I still need: maternity work pants. A maternity denim skirt to replace my absolute favorite denim pencil skirt that I wear at least once a week, but which I haven’t been able to completely button for two weeks now. This BeBand thing I heard about, to possibly solve the dilemma of being able to fit in, but not button, my regular pants. To see my bestie more often. Another chocolate peanut butter brownie.

I just hope no one notices my pants are held up with paper clips in the meantime.

Stacia M. Fleegal

York Daily Record multiplatform journalist. Degrees in creative writing from Lycoming College and Spalding University, and a coupla books with my name on them. Central PA native who came home after floating around for a while, but always grounded by words and the places and people I remember.

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6 Responses

  1. You can blame the paper clip on the power outage at TJ Maxx if anyone calls you out on it ;)

  2. Jessica says:

    Get the belly band!!! I was doubtful at first but it’s totally worth it and at almost 9 months into this pregnancy I’m still wearing it!!! Plus it keeps you from spending mega bucks on maternity pants :)

  3. Tabatha says:

    i loved old navy maternity… got almost all my stuff there, especially pants ;-)

  4. Adriane says:

    Always love reading you blogs! I’m so happy for you and Jon!

  5. Jessica, I’ll definitely get one and blog about it soon! Tabatha, I’m going this weekend. Adriane, thanks so much! Thanks to you all for reading. Oh, and Jon, I can’t blame anyone now that I got good tips, so you’ll just have to accompany me to Old Navy and hold my try-on pile if the lights go out there, too. :)

  1. September 27, 2012

    [...] M. Fleegal TweetSo I’ve blogged about mustering up the energy to exercise, and about shopping for maternity clothes, and I realize I’m a little preoccupied with body image. But the thing is, in pregnancy, your [...]

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