For My Mom

For My Mom,

So many things are happening all at once in life. I wish I had more time to capture them all on paper. This year has been hard. The fragility of life continues to stare me in the face. It used to be my daily encounters with patients, but now it’s my own role as infertility patient and my mother’s role as breast cancer patient. As I fight to make a new life she fights to save the one that she has refined with fire over the past 69 years.

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There’s no one quite like my mom. None can really compare to the depth of her compassion for others, her genuine concern for their deepest needs, her self- sacrifice, and her willingness to give regardless of any cost or discomfort to herself. I’m not sure that I’ve ever met a woman more willing to give everything that she has to a stranger. When Christ said to the young ruler to sell all that he had and give it to the poor…my mom makes that look easy. You may think I’m exaggerating, but then I recall the homeless woman that she picked up off of the street and then brought home to live with us for 6 months; the time that we took about 50 pounds of fried chicken to the homeless in Metro DC parks just because; the week we spent serving meals to families during the aftermath of Hurricane Andrew; her hours spent pouring into children with severe learning disabilities, the years she has ministered to broken women who have lost their husbands, their freedom, and their self-worth. When asked to help, she doesn’t think of the most minimal way…nope…she’s all in. If you could fault someone for possibly giving too much it would be her. And, yet, how can you fault her? I’m sure that she has entertained angels because she is always ready to say yes to what God has for her.

Not many people have that kind of empathy that moves beyond emotion into action. Not just action for a season, but action for a lifetime. Is my mom perfect? No. Do I hold that against her? Absolutely not. She has been an example to me of how an imperfect human can make an amazing difference. She has taught me to love others more than myself. To care for their needs more than my own. She has shown me that getting ahead is not as important as making sure that others get their feet underneath them. Money is simply a tool to help others. The more you have the greater your responsibility to use it for good. She has been an advocate for the woman without a voice and for the child trapped in the chaos of learning disabilities. She has opened doors and broken windows that others wouldn’t dare to even turn the handle on. Her boldness is courageous…and she makes it look easy. She asks for nothing in return except for prayers answered.Closeup On Hands Of Stressed Young Woman

Yes, she’s the woman who prays for the clerk at the grocery counter…every time…For the woman sitting next to her in the waiting room, for the nurse administering her chemo, for the doctor who may be having a rough day. And, people actually want to pray with her. She is sincere. She wants to know their struggles. She wants to take them to God. She knows that only he can fix them.

Strangers are her friends within moments. And, she truly cares about their spiritual well being. Above all else she loves Jesus and has made it her mission in life to make sure that I love him too. I’m sure that she made far more sacrifices for me than I will ever know. And, while I selfishly complain that I don’t get to see her enough at Christmas time each year because she is off empowering widows young and old in Nigeria each holiday season, in my heart I’m astounded by her resolve to make their lives better. Because of her I’m inspired to heed to the compassion and empathy that stirs in my own soul.

The thing about her giving spirit is that it never runs dry. The more she gives out the more she is filled up. Her prayers are answered. She circles them. She marches around buildings until the walls fall down or until new walls are built. She is Ruth, Esther, Mary, and Martha all at once…and she is my mom. How blessed I have been and still am to know her and to be loved by her. She is the first person that I call for prayer. Again, while she has faults and imperfections that drive me crazy at times, these fall to the wayside in light of her strengths. I have never met another woman like my mother. She is loud. She is bright. She is the love of Jesus to others. And, she is unashamed.

She would be embarrassed if I said that her faith in God was, “impressive.” Her faith in God is faithful. And, while she triumphs now through rounds of chemo to quell and aggressive stage 4 breast cancer, she would point to God saying that he is her miraculous healer even if that healing happens after this life.

Selfishly, I don’t want to lose her from this life. I want to continue to see God use her in amazing ways. I want to continue to be inspired by the legacy she is creating-a legacy that moves thousands to their knees in prayer. I’m sure God can’t wait to have her in heaven, but my prayer is that he will wait a whole lot longer.

To My Precious and Irreplaceable Mom

(Boldly written because she wouldn’t have it any other way.)

Love,

The Daughter in Me

Help Me Pick…which is your favorite picture?

I need your help! Which is your favorite picture? I’m trying to get my media packet together and need some feedback. They’re all starting to look the same to me:) I’m thinking the first one or the last? Leave a comment with your vote…please!
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WOW! This post is looking a little conceited! I promise I’m not this self-absorbed! Let me throw in some family photos too! Then maybe it won’t feel so weird! I need a favorite family shot too!

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Photography: Angela Talley Photography

Ayla’s Outfit: Turqouise Dress-Tutu Du Monde, Silver Shoes-See Kai Run, Feather Headband-Tutu Du Monde, Flower headband-Avry Couture Creations, Pink Swan Princess Dress-Kate Mack, Pink Jeweled Headband-Enchanted Shimmer Designs

Emma’s Outfit: White and Grey tiny floral print dress-Banana Republic, Silver Bangle-Tiffany & Co., Diamond Earring Studs-Kay Jewelers, Neutral Heels-Discount Shoe Warehouse (DSW)

Dave’s Outfit: White Dress Shirt- Brooks Brothers, Tailored Sport Coat-Carven, Jeans-Banana Republic, Tan Shoes-Cole Haan

Don’t forget to VOTE!!!!! Leave a comment with your favorites! 

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Our Merry Christmas Card…a little bit of gold…a little bit of glam…a whole lot of cheer!

 

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Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas! Hostetter-12 Hostetter-13 Hostetter-14 Hostetter-15 Hostetter-16 Hostetter-17 Hostetter-18

May Faith, Hope, and Love Light Up Your Holiday
Hostetter-19Merry Christmas!!!!

Photographs by Hannah Hilliard Photography.

Ayla’s Outfits: Red and Gold dresses, gold cape, and star headband –Tutu Du Monde, Pink Cape and gold shoes-Joyfolie, Knee High Gold Heart Stockings-Ry and Rue Kids. Gold Star Crown-J.Crew.

Emma’s Outfit: Gold sequin and multicolored metallic dress and matching belt-Anthropologie, Bronze Metallic shoes-Kenneth Cole.

Dave’s Outfit: Brown Velvet Sport Coat- Banana Republic, White Dress Shirt-Brooks Brothers, Tan Shoes-Cole Haan from Nordstrom.

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Mustache Fashion and Play-for all the gals and tots out there!

HELLO MUSTACHE!!!!

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OH, Yes!!!! Every Babe can rock a mustache! (Gals and babies included). I’ve just picked a few of my favorite inspirations to feature here, but check out my MUSTACHE STORE and The Mom in Me, MD on Pinterest for more great ideas! Movember is almost over, but it is never too late to support a great cause! Who wouldn’t want mustache cookie cutters, a toy shaving kit, a super cute shirt, or a pair of Movember TOMS SHOES!

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TOMS Shoes…Corporate Sell Out or Praise Worthy Vision?

I haven’t reblogged anyone’s content on my page before, but I found this article from JoyCorps so interesting that I though it was worth sharing the link. I love TOMS shoes. I love their mission and heart for helping the less fortunate through social entrepreneurship. TOMS saw a way to combine business with altruism. Is TOMS only a not-for-profit? Of course not! They are a business intended to make money. Does that make them evil? No. Without a profit they would be unable to provide numerous jobs, put shoes on barefoot children, and provide necessary eye-care to the blind and those with visual disturbances.Wall Street SignAfrican children

Has the recent TOMS’ business decision to partner with corporate America lessened their mission? As a medical provider and public health specialist who has a heart for international health care, I would say that we need more companies that are willing to create sustainable solutions for poverty, disease, and illness. I applaud grass-roots non-profits (I even volunteer with several), but even these groups need funding to make a difference.african children

Unfortunately, non-profits end up spending so much time trying to get their funding that they are unable to focus on their primary mission…helping the less fortunate or those in need of medical attention. Social entrepreneurship provides a way for non-profits to be sustainably funded…genius in my opinion. If TOMS can increase their altruistic reach and ONE for ONE impact by partnering with corporate America, maybe it is a smart move. Maybe we shouldn’t be too quick to judge but should instead wait and see what good their social entrepreneurship is about to do. I don’t hold any of the other shoe brands I wear to such a high moral standard…do you? Businessman standing on top of elephant balancing on a tightrope

Check out this great article from JoyCorps for more thoughts on the recent TOMS 50% buy-out by Bain Capital. Leave a comment here letting me know what you think!  http://joycorps.org/is-toms-selling-out/

Oh, and just because I love all of my fans…I’ve decided to do a TOMS shoes giveaway! Yep…free from me to your little one’s feet. A pair of pink Tiny TOMS Glitters could be all yours! Just leave a comment below with your thoughts on this article and then share it on your Facebook page. Oh, and make sure you click this link to enter your name to win. a Rafflecopter giveawayPinkTinyTOMSGlitterClassics-007013D11-PINK-H_1450x1015

From The Mom in Me, MD

Noonday Jewelry Giveaway…

Almost every girl loves jewelry! A statement necklace, simple stud earring, or layered set of bangles-each has the potential to perfectly complete or transform your outfit. What if in addition to adding beauty to your wardrobe, your jewelry could improve the quality of life for other women and their children? “Fashion that creates economic opportunity for the vulnerable”…that is the mission at Noonday Collection. If your jewelry could fight against poverty and injustice, wouldn’t that make everyone feel a little more beautiful…on the inside and out?photo 4 photo 3

Last year I commented on a friend’s necklace. It was gorgeous! The story behind it was even more breath taking. I then learned that Noonday Collection works with 2000 artisans in over 10 underdeveloped countries, providing them with a fair wage and an opportunity to provide for their families. In one country, jewelry is made by a group of “outcast” HIV positive men and women who find a new sense of dignity when they are given a job, a fair wage, and medications to treat their illness. Artillery is melted down and turned into masterful pieces of art, taking something meant for evil and turning it into something beautiful…what a gorgeous concept!photo 2photo 3

When fashion can improve lives by putting food on the table, placing orphans in loving homes, and empowering women through meaningful and fair employment who wouldn’t want to spend their money where it makes a significant difference. For more about the Noonday Collection story, check out their website. Each piece of jewelry has a unique story. Each story is attached to a life impacted by this organization.

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AURORA WRAP BRACELET hand made in Kenya from glass beads and adorned with the Noonday Collection charm. GORGEOUS and FREE for one special winner!

Just because Noonday Collection is so amazing, one of their ambassadors, Tasha, has agreed to team up with The Mom in Me, MD for a free giveaway! She didn’t have to twist my arm. I love the jewelry…and can’t wait to start shopping! Although I would love for all of you to win the gorgeous Aurora Wrap Bracelet that Tasha has so generously gifted…I’ve only got one to share. However, you can do some of your own shopping now and here’s how. IMG_4238Try to get your shopping in by this Monday, September 1, 2014 using my name Emma Hostetter-Hall while my trunk show is open. If you miss that deadline…don’t worry, you can still make purchases at anytime through Tasha at this link http://www.tashaburgoyne.noondaycollection.com

Happy shopping and good luck with the giveaway! Click on the link below for giveaway entry details.

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From The Mom in Me, MD

3 Mix and Match Tips with High and Low Prices…to Look Fabulous!

IMG_7405Everyone is on a budget, and anyone who says they aren’t should be! That’s where mixing and matching the high and low becomes your best fashion friend. My budget doesn’t allow for Tory Burch or Louis Vuitton head to toe. Instead, I have to do a little sprinkling of these pricy brands. Good news is…one designer item can make your whole outfit look expensive (even if most of it is from the resale shop). Here are a few tips to help you look fab on a budget that only allows for infrequent designer splurges!

1. Put Your Money Where Your Accessories Are!IMG_7424

I’ve found that accessories tend to stay in style long after clothing. Purchasing a designer fashion purse, scarf, or piece of jewelry will make your “pretty” dollar last quite a while longer. This doesn’t mean that you should purchase a neon Chloe bag! Choose a Chloe bag in a more neutral tone that you will be able to carry for years to come. If you really need an 80’s inspired neon purse…buy an off brand! When choosing scarves, choose something in a trendy pattern but classic color scheme. This will last you a lot longer as well. I love buying fun shoes! These dress up any outfit, and a cute pair of Tory Burch sandals can steal the show! The nice thing is that you can wear a designer pair of shoes with 1000 different outfits! Definitely your money’s worth.

2. Buy Inexpensive Staples

No one will ever be able to tell the difference between a Marc Jacobs black maxi skirt and a nice but inexpensive one from Target. If you don’t believe me…test it out on your friends. Yes, some cheap purchases fall apart in two washes so you need to be careful to choose items that are made from decent materials. Just because something is inexpensive doesn’t mean that it has to be a piece of junk. Choose your cheap items carefully. Check the stitching to make sure that it is sewn straight and won’t fray on the first wear. Try it on for comfort and fit. If it doesn’t flatter your shape…DON’T BUY IT JUST BECAUSE IT’S IN STYLE! You can find ways to be trendy without sabotaging your figure.

3. Mixing and Matching Expensive with Inexpensive Upgrades the Whole Outfit.

Now that you have your designer accessories and your inexpensive staples, mix them all together to get a complete look. You don’t have to shop designer to look designer. Many stores sell great high-fashion trends at inexpensive prices. My one word of warning is this…don’t get sucked into knock-off/fake purchases. It is tempting to buy a knock-off Louis Vuitton online or while traveling abroad. DON’T DO IT! These bags are black market and often linked to human trafficking and child labor! Fashion should never come at the cost of another’s life! Save for the real deal, or be content without it. Remember…a purse is just a purse no matter who made it (I can’t believe I just wrote that!)

On a lighter note…let’s take a look at my outfit from last Saturday. I had a laid back day, but didn’t want to hang out in my Pilates clothes. Instead, I opted for a comfy black maxi skirt, a tank, and some fun accessories. Here’s my laid back outfit from this past Saturday. Can you tell what’s pricy and what isn’t? IMG_7419

Okay, I will share my secrets. Starting from the bottom…I love my Tory Burch sandals. These are pricy, but comfy and gorgeous! Because they are made from snake-skin they can be worn with black, grey, brown, white…you name it! The Tory Burch logo on the front solidly lets everyone know that they are designer. The black maxi skirt is BCBG…just kidding…I don’t even know where I got it! I think I snatched it up for less than $15. The tank is from Nordstrom Rack, again less than $15. On my wrists I have a thick bangle that I snagged for less than $30 while in a Miami boutique. The leather and metal bracelet looks like one I saw in Tori Burch, but instead of $80 I picked this one up for $12 dollars at a trendy local boutique in Indiana, Karisma. The necklace was $25 (again from Karisma). The bag…okay, don’t be jealous…this is a leather Valentino bag with metal plate on front and matching leather wallet inside. I’m not sure I could have ever brought myself to spent how much this bag retails for. I actually found it at Nordstrom Rack in Naples, Florida! Because the metal plate had one tiny little scratch on it I paid less than a 1/4 of the asking price. The scarf on my head is indeed Louis Vuitton. No discount there, but I didn’t buy it…Christmas gift last year!

Have fun with what you can afford. If you do have the luxury of a splurge, first look for it at places like Nordstrom Rack or similar outlets. They often carry designer at a fraction of the price. Why spend more if you don’t have too. For more fun fashion tips stay tuned!

From The Mom in Me, MD

 

 

Boy Clothes…that make even the girls jealous!

slideshow_2I’ve always gushed about how glad I am to have a little girl because I can play dress up with her clothes everyday!  Although some boy clothing is cute, it usually just isn’t as much fun. Well… all you mammas of little gents, it’s my turn to envy you! I just stumbled upon the raddest little boys’ store in downtown Fishers, Indiana. Don’t worry, if you live 5,000 miles away you can still get in on the action at www.romanandleo.com10313361_289411907906716_7828434022085382283_n

10458431_292340187613888_4776787028359589223_nRoman & Leo is a new BOYS ONLY apparel and accessories store that oozes urban cool. The mom who owns this little shop knows boys’ fashion. With two little gents of her own, and a love for trendy but sensible boy clothes, Angela decided to open Roman & Leo. The staple items of her store include cool t-shirts with trendy graphics, comfortable shorts, super cute bandana bibs (aka spit up and drool catchers), adorable shoes, beanies, and even black rimmed specs!

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Because I love my readers and because Roman & Leo wants to make sure you get some rad clothes for your little guys, this month only they are offering an online promotional code of 15% off to The Mom in Me, MD fans! If you live locally, the sale works for you too! Simply mention that you read about them on The Mom in Me, MD blog and you will get 15% off of your in-store purchase! Sale only runs until July 31, 2014 so make sure you start shopping now!

Because Angela is a mom, she has though of everything! If running to the store with three little boys isn’t your idea of a fun shopping spree, simply order online and opt for in store pickup. Saves you the shipping and guarantees that you won’t have to pick all of the inventory off of the floor when your boys are done “shopping”!

OH, Yes!!! The Promotional Code…MEMD IMG_1071_ec51993e-1e54-4014-904e-e8943384aeff_large10356036_294177867430120_6415298411364561351_n

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From The Mom in Me, MD

Fashion Alert for Anthropology Lovers XOXO

I crave anthropology! No, not the study of people and cultures (although that is pretty amazing too). I crave the all too bohemian chic of the women’s clothing store, Anthropology. If you have the same craving or crush now is the time to save. Anthro is having their summer tag sale…an extra 20% off sale items! Simply use the code Buzz20. Thought I would spotlight a few of my favorite sale picks for Anthro lovers and for the newbies about to fall in love.

 

I’m all about pattern this season! Give me a pattern, a simple tank, and then let me load on the jewelry! Comfy, chic, and trendy. Love!

Mix and match these picks with things already tucked away in your closet. If your budget only allows for one…choose an accessory! You will get much more wear for your money. Happy shopping!

All of these images are taken directly from Anthropology’s website. Click on the hyperlinked text on each picture to make your online purchase.

 

From The Mom in Me, MD

Mini-Pedi for Your Baby’s Little Piggies

We all know about the mani-pedi, but what about the “mini” pedi for our little girls tiny toes! My daughter is at the age where she copies everything that I’m doing. Recently, she started noticing my pretty pink toenails, but she was disappointed when she saw that hers weren’t like mommy’s. I’m all about keeping little girls, little girls, but a little bit of nail polish never made a munchkin grow up too fast, right? Besides, painting our toenails together created some extra fun mommy-baby time.Baby feet in mother's hands outside in grass

Ayla is old enough to have an opinion so I took her to the store to pick out her own color. She knew exactly what she wanted (I even tried to trick her by swapping out her color choice with another. She caught on and exchanged it right back! Bad Mommy!) Although I let Ayla have the final say on her polish color, I had the final say on what products were safe for us to use on her precious toes.

Babies put their fingers and toes everywhere! How they manage the toe mouth maneuver I’ll never understand! Ayla is so good at it that I think she has a chance for joining junior Cirque du Soleil. I digress. Back to safety. Since our little girls may be tasting their polish every now and again, it is important to choose products that are non-toxic and as close to nature as possible. Several brands are made specifically for kids such as Piggy Paint and Hopscotch Kids Water Colors. These are non-toxic Water Based options that work well. Both companies have nail polish removers that are acetone free! Yay! No nasty odor! I highlight water based because many organic/vegan nail polishes are solvent based rather than water based. They may not be toxic but they do still have chemicals in them. For my little one, I’d rather be on the safe side and opt for water! (if you are pregnant these are a great option as well)Cute Baby Playing With Mothers Manicure Cosmetics

However, if you are looking for organic or vegan brands made for mommies with busy hands and toes, here are some other great companies! These aren’t water based like the baby polish, so they do last a little longer for active mammas, and they are still non-toxic. I went to the organic grocery store to purchase my own nail polish and ended up choosing the Pacifica brand. Sparitual and Zoya are two other natural/non-toxic brands that work well. These all come in an array of colors. They aren’t cheap, but neither is Revlon anymore!

Yes, painting your little girl’s nails isn’t a necessity, but it does make for some fun memories and special mommy-daughter moments. It’s okay for your little one to feel pretty on the outside, as long as she knows that being beautiful on the inside is what matters most!

For more safe options for your toes and hers check out the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Cosmetics Database. This will allow you to search any and all products on the market!

From The Mom in Me, MD