Beyond Overdue Fertility Update

My last fertility post was in January and unfortunately, I think my absence says a lot about our progress. I left off with the details of our very successful egg retrieval and hoped to come back with positive news of a successful transfer and pregnancy announcement, unfortunately that is not the case. My FET (frozen embryo transfer) was on March 1, 2022. The transfer itself is the easiest part of IVF (IMO), it takes minutes and is almost anticlimactic considering all that you do to get to there. The estrogen pills and patches, hours long infusions, progesterone shots and blood thinner shots were by far the worst of it all. So when it came time for the actual transfer, I was left thinking, all that invasive prep and thats it!? BUT we were finally at the finish line, all that stressful and painful preparation led me to this point and here was our happy ending, or so we thought.

With my clinic you are on bedrest for 3 days post transfer (not including day of transfer) then house arrest for two days. This is controversial in IVF and different doctors share different opinions on bed rest, but for me I chose to trust my doctor and follow the rules. Everything went smoothly and I survived – by the skin of my teeth, my first shower never felt so good!

On day 10 post transfer I was to go in for my beta blood test (pregnancy test). Most clinics advise you not to do an at home pregnancy test prior to that because the blood test is done at the earliest possible time; however, I would venture to say 99% of women (myself included) cannot wait the full 10 days. It is torture and you start analyzing everything you feel or don’t feel and consider anything a possible symptom of pregnancy. I lasted until day 5 or 6 before I started testing. Unbeknownst to me, blue dye tests (clear blue) and digital tests are the worst for early detection but having no knowledge of that, that was the first test I used. The three minutes passed and I saw the faintest of faint two lines. I texted them out to my friends near and far in the IVF community asking for opinions – got the same answer, no matter how faint, it was a positive test. I was cautiously optimistic and at the direction of an IVF pro, took a first response early detection pink dye test and there was another extremely faint second line.

I stopped testing because the stress of it was starting to really get to me. I made it to day 10 and went in for my blood test. Typically, you go in the morning (which I did) but then you have to wait the entire day for the doctor to call you with results. After the longest eight hours of my life, the phone rings. “Dr. ____ Cell”. I answer with clammy hands. “your HCG is showing you are pregnant, BUT it’s not as high as I would like, you’re only at 25 and I would like to see closer to 50. At this point I need you to come in two days to see if your HCG goes up/doubles. I need to be honest, this could be a chemical pregnancy but I’ve seen success with initial numbers this low, its a 50/50 chance.”

For the next 10 days I went back and forth to the clinic for blood draws because my numbers kept rising, a good sign, but not exactly doubling every 24-72 hours as they should. All the while I am continuing the awful progesterone shots and pills and patches, it was torture, a rollercoaster from hell. After my second to last blood draw, I had a scan. There looked to be a small, small sac – there was hope. That day my numbers stalled. Went in the next day for a scan and there was no more sac and my numbers started to go down. It was a failed cycle, a chemical pregnancy. Another loss, another heartbreak.

To add insult to injury, my grandfather passed away the day after my transfer. I was across the country and was on bed rest. By the time his services were scheduled, I was off bedrest; however, it’s strongly advised not to fly in the first six weeks post transfer. I was bedside myself, I couldn’t be there for my mother, grandmother and properly mourn the loss of my grandfather. My husband called the clinic without me knowing, and asked what my options were. They said although its not advised, I could go but I’d have to take a red eye (something to do with sun exposure) both ways along with a few other stipulations. I was at a crossroads. I knew they didn’t particularly want me to fly across the country and I knew that if something happened, I would have blamed myself. After a lot a tears, phone calls and discussions, we ultimately decided it was best that I stay put. A few days after my grandfather was laid to rest, I found out my transfer failed. It was a really rough couple weeks after that. I was devastated over another failed pregnancy and devastated that I wasn’t there to say goodbye to my grandfather. To say I felt guilty was an understatement, the transfer failed anyway, I could have gone, I should have gone.

Despite it all, I was back to business shortly there after. My first visit post confirmation of the failed transfer, I asked how soon we could try again. Sympathetically my doctor looked at me and said, I understand you want to try again as soon as possible but its going to have to be at least two more menstrual cycles before we can effectively start another protocol. Ok I thought, we have a plan and will try again in a few months time and this time it will work…

In Loving Memory of Ralph A. Tarantino (1927-2022)

Get the Look for Less

Since I am not cool enough to be an Amazon affiliate (yet) I wanted to share this look for less with you here so I can directly link my Amazon products. I follow @Scoutthecity and absolutely love her style and vibe. I was inspired to try and recreate this look with key accessories coming from Amazon.

@Scoutthecity is wearing Prada here and although I wish I could afford her look entirely, I cannot. She’s wearing the sparkle sock trend so effortlessly that it made me want to finally pull the trigger on trying it. These Amazon socks provide such a fun way to accessorize and elevate your outfit, definitely outside my comfort zone but totally worth trying!

Her metallic Prada shoulder bag is gorgeous but here is the Amazon bag I chose, giving off the same vibe and style for much, much less.

I shot two different tops for my recreation, the pink/muave top is Zara (last year) but I loved how her shimmering pink top looked accessorized with the sparkle socks, silver bag and block heels. I thought this was a good alternative because it gave me the color I was looking for and the gemmed buttons offered the sparkle it needed. In the second shot I am wearing this Amazon top; although you can’t tell from the photo, it is lurex-y and has the shimmer of the original look. The only difference being the champagne color is slightly more neutral and muted (yet beautiful) than @Scoutthecity.

I loved how her wide leg denim was slightly cuffed to show off those sparkling ankles. I recreated that with my favorite 90’s jeans from Abercrombie. I didn’t have an embellished block heeled sandal and had difficulty finding a pair (that wouldn’t take eight weeks to get to me) so I chose my tried and true Stuart Weitzman Nearlynude Sandals. Lastly, no shock here but I am wearing my cherished Amazon cat eye sunglasses that I think look extremely similar to the ones worn in the original look.

And there you have it, my @Scoutthecity look for less! Hope you love this as much as I loved rounding it up for you!



To The Women Before Me

I am sorry. I am sorry I didn’t understand the pain of your loss, I am sorry I didn’t know what to say or if I said the wrong things, I am sorry if I wasn’t there for you in the capacity that you needed, I am sorry if I didn’t check in enough, but most of all I am sorry that you ever struggled with pregnancy loss or infertility.

When you’ve never experienced these things or haven’t tried to start a family yet, admittedly it can be very hard to understand and relate to, but being on the other side now, I know how hard it can be. It’s a complete and utter mind fuck and an emotional rollercoaster. You don’t know what to think or how to feel, and when you are deep in an emotion you question if you’re being too dramatic or not feeling enough.

Speaking for myself, after my first two losses I was a complete mess but had moments where I would think to myself “why are you being so dramatic, you never saw the baby on the screen, the fetus never developed and you never heard a heart beat.” With my third loss on one hand I was crushed because there was a baby and there was a heartbeat, but on the other hand I expected this to happen and was numb. I had nothing left at that point, but don’t worry, I beat myself up for that too.

Now that we’re going through IVF (and have a ton of time to think while we wait in limbo for next steps), I’ve realized all my feelings are and were valid. Whatever I felt in those moments were valid. However anyone processes their grief is valid and it should never be questioned. A loss is a loss is a loss.

For some women, myself included, the connection to that “baby” can begin at the sight of those two lines. Pregnancy loss and infertility can be torture, and it can break you, it almost broke me but it didn’t. I know I owe that in large part to my own strength, but the other part is owed to the support I received. I am beyond lucky that I have women in my life that lifted me up and got me through it. I hate that I know so many women who have struggled, but I love the strength they’ve given me whether they know it or not. Since sharing my story here, there have been a few others that have reached out and were kind enough to share their own struggles with me. Their stories are invaluable to me and I am so grateful for their vulnerability. I only hope I have helped them in some small way by being so open, after all that was my hope for somethingsmallsocal.

To the women before me, even though I may or may not have been the best support in your time of need (and for that I am truly sorry), know that by picking yourselves up and fighting for your rainbow and miracles babies, you have given me and likely so many other women the courage and strength to do the same. This is my love letter to you – you badass, incredible women.



Egg Retrieval Update!

As promised (and very delayed, thanks Covid) I am writing to give you my egg retrieval update! First and foremost, surgery went really well with no complications. My doctor retrieved 28 eggs (28!!!) and she thought 22 of them were mature. Day one post retrieval 24 were mature and fertilized normally and another made it to day three for a total of 25 which was way more than we expected. My doctor uses a process called ICSI (Intracytoplasmic sperm injection) which means instead of letting the egg and sperm fertilize naturally in the petri dish, ICSI injects a single live sperm directly into the center of the egg. Once again we were humbled by the science of all this, when you think about how intricate that process is, it’s truly incredible.

For those of you that don’t know, IVF entails a LOT of waiting – you wait for updates every other day and like clockwork my doctor would call every other day around dinner time. Since we knew we had 24 fertilized eggs on day one, I knew on day three she would call with final number of mature/fertilized eggs, which ended up being 25. The last update comes on day five post retrieval which is the big one, on this day you find out how many of the fertilized eggs made it to “blast” (blastocysts). A blastocyst is made up of an inner group of cells with an outer shell, that inner group of cells will become the embryo which then becomes the baby.

Backing up a bit, before retrieval most women are cautioned to understand that likely half of eggs retrieved will not make it to blast. Knowing this, we were so excited to find out that 11 of our eggs made it to blast on day five. It was a great number to send off to genetic testing, better known as PGT (preimplantation genetic testing) in the IVF world. This type of testing is not covered in our IVF insurance (which is extremely frustrating) but it was a necessity for us because of our three prior losses and a confirmed abnormality on the last one. We want to make sure we are going into pregnancy with the best chances because my heart can’t take another loss. This process is by no means foolproof and there (like with any pregnancy) is always a chance of failure or miscarriage.

Now the hardest part (MORE waiting) the PGT results can take up to two weeks. It took 12 days for us and it was torture. BUT that day was a great day. Out of our 11, we had six normal embryos, six! The doctor was thrilled for us, this was a great number and we were over the moon. Considering I was hoping for 2-3 normal ones, this news couldn’t have been better. We still had to wait for the grading but I was ok with it. Grading helps your doctor determine the “best” embryo to transfer. Each embryo is given a number and two letters (something like 5AB). The number represents the expansion of the embryo cavity (basically if its hatching or hatched, weird I know) and the letters, just like in school, are grading the embryo and the placenta respectively. From what I understand a day 5 embryo with a 5AA grade is a ideal for transfer, but you can still have a successful pregnancy with a lower grade embryo. I won’t be sharing grades; however, we have a few great embryos and are confident in which one the doctor will want to transfer.

Two days post retrieval and the bloating wasn’t even at it’s peak yet!

Jake and I are so happy to have had such a successful egg retrieval and we know it doesn’t go that way for all women, we know how incredibly fortunate we are. With that being said, since I did have so many eggs (remember 28 were retrieved) I had a pretty tough recovery. I went into something call OHSS (ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome). Basically it was my body’s exaggerated response to all the hormones from the injectables. The way it was explained to me was that your body realizes you just produced a ton of eggs and recognizes that as abnormal (which it is, you only produce one in a normal cycle) so the body sees it as a problem. To fix this problem, lots of helper cells are sent to your inner lady parts and stuff happens, this is where I was lost. All I know is I had a ton of free floating fluid and bloating like I’ve never had before. It was the most uncomfortable I had been since giving birth, and TMI but the constipation was REAL, for me worse than postpartum. I was like this for probably a week before I started to feel normal. I couldn’t drink anything but electrolyte beverages as to not add any unwanted fluid into my body, was on a medication to try and offset the OHSS and I just had to rest. It was brutal but lots of women go through this, seems to be par for the course and you just gotta take it in stride. I recovered but I am VERY grateful I won’t have to do go through that again (hopefully) seeing as we have healthy embryos to work with.

I have one more test I need to have done before we can move forward with transfer BUT I also need to recover from covid before that test can happen. This means everything is delayed but your girl is keeping her eye on the prize.

And just like that this will be my last update until (crossing fingers, toes and everything else) we hopefully announce a healthy pregnancy some point this year.

Wish us luck and sprinkle all the baby dust!


IVF Update

We’ve hit the ground running so fast that I’ve been too busy to update you guys! But here I am to share the good news that we met with the fertility specialist I mentioned about six weeks ago and fell in love with her. She took so much time to speak with us, get to know us, our story and my medical history that it was a no brainer, especially considering her success rates. Jake and I decided immediately after our consultation with her that she was our doctor.

A few days later we began my natural cycle monitoring. Basically that means I had to go in every two days for blood work and ultrasounds so the doctor could understand my cycle timing and my hormone levels. I was monitored through ovulation. Once I ovulated and the doctor reviewed my hormone levels and ultrasounds, she told me my follicles were a bit asymmetric (meaning they varied in size a little more than she would like) and I was put on estrogen patches to try and even things out. I was instructed to switch out the patches every two days and once I got my period to remove them and I did just that. I went back to the office on day two of my period as I was instructed for more blood work and another ultrasound. You learn very quickly with fertility treatments thats timing is EVERYTHING and apparently period day two is the best day to get a good understanding of follicle quantity/quality.

I had roughly 27 follicles which is a great number and I found out that night I was to start my IVF shots. The reality of the situation set in when I was given my demonstrations of the two shots I was going to need to inject myself with every night. One was a pen that was pretty straight forward (Follistim) and the other was a bit more complicated because it involved mixing powdered medication with saline via a syringe (Menopur). Ask anyone who has been through fertility treatment – they all know the names of these meds by heart and soon enough they ask how much Follistim and how many Menopur, its crazy! These meds are all just hormones your body produces naturally but they essentially hyper stimulate your follicles so you produce a bunch of eggs in one cycle instead of the usual one that is released in a natural cycle. The science in all of the this in absolutely incredible and Jake and I barely scratched the surface in our understanding of it all but we are certainly humbled and grateful for it all.

That night was a little overwhelming to say the least. I usually have no issue with needles, but having to do them yourself without the assistance of a medical professional was a little daunting. I decided I wanted to inject myself (a wise friend who’s been through it said to try to do it myself because its empowering and it was!) seeing as all shots were in my lower abdomen and easy to reach myself. Jake was with me in our bathroom, we watched several youtube instructional videos to be extra careful we were doing everything correctly. I then loaded the pen with my first shot. I was about to do it and it hit me, I felt a little wheezy and overwhelmed but I took a deep breath and did it. Next up was the mixed meds which proved to be a little more complicated for me (I think it was because I was nervous) and I had trouble getting it mixed properly but eventually I did and injected myself again. We decided going forward Jake would mix the Menopur for me to make it a bit less stressful but man that one BURNED. Thank god they told me that in the office otherwise I would have panicked I did something wrong. The injection sites hurt for a few minutes, then completely subsided. I did it!!

From that night on I took two shots to the lower abs like clockwork. My doctor texted me every night letting me know if the dosage was staying the same or if they needed to be tweaked a bit. She decided all this based on the blood work and ultrasound results I was having every other day (better know as “Morning Monitoring”). The fertility center quickly became my second home that week and on day six of shots we added a third, Ganirelix. This is the drug that stops me from ovulating naturally so we can keep growing my follicles. That needle was a little bit bigger than the other two so naturally it hurt more but it was quick – the only caveat to this one was it needed to be done at the EXACT SAME TIME every night, no pressure, right? I continued with the three shots for four more nights and office visits every other day. On day 10 I was told no more Follistim, just the Menopur and Ganirelix and that my trigger shot (I’ll explain this in a second) was going to be on day eleven (today). I went in this morning for my monitoring and I “look fabulous and I am ready”! This means tonight is the night I trigger. The trigger shot makes me ovulate so my follicles that we’ve been growing are ready to release eggs. This means I will need to have my egg retrieval surgery within 35-36 hours of the shot which brings us to this Thursday! Now here’s where timing is everything comes in to play again. My doctor is going to be calling me tonight to tell me the exact time I need to take the shot as it will be timed perfectly with my surgery, it could be 10pm or it could be 1am we have to wait and see! I currently have two large “targets” drawn on my lower back (near my love handles to be exact) which is where Jake gets to inject me this time. The difference with this shot is it need to be injected into muscle (because, science) so the needle is longer. Damn near passed out when I saw it during my demo but I will get through it.

Over the past 11 days there have been some tears from the anxiety and stress of it all, some tears from the shots because they freaking hurt and now mostly because I am super bloated and feel like I am walking around with grapefruits for ovaries. Because I have so many follicles ranging from 14mm to 24mm, I am very uncomfortable and it is only going to get worse after egg retrieval for reasons that are above my pay grade. I will be put out for surgery (which is outpatient) and it is a relatively quick procedure but it is still scary none the less. Despite my anxiety, I am just trying to keep my eye on the prize for now. I’ve been through a lot already and I know I can get through this. We are hopeful I will get a nice amount of embryos that fertilize from this retrieval. Once we know how many fertilized successfully we will have them genetically tested to avoid a situation like my most recent miscarriage. Our hope is to have my transfer in the new year.

I will keep you updated post egg retrieval and let you know the results but after that I will be going dark and playing transfer and its timing close to the chest. I would like to maintain some ounce of normalcy and an element of surprise before we (hopefully) announce a healthy pregnancy sometime in 2022. Until then…



Styling (Faux) Leather Leggings

I have had these Commando leggings from the Nordstrom Anniversary sale sitting in my closet for months. They’re a wardrobe staple and a fall must have and I’ve always loved the look on other people. I had a pair from Aritzia that I used to wear a lot pre Ollie so I decided to finally give these a go. I ended up having way more fun with them than I thought and look forward to putting together even more looks for you soon. I prefer these to the Spanx leggings because I find these to look more like real leather and personally hold me in a bit better. Read on to see how I would style these #trending pants and where I would wear each look.

In my head this first outfit looked amazing, albeit outside of my comfort zone. I was worried that I wasn’t “cool enough” to pull this off but when I put it on it felt so effortless and fun – to me the best outfits are the ones that look awesome but consist of basics and this is definitely one of those. Both the sweatshirt and puffer vest are cropped, I love the look of a longline top with these leggings, but I am just so petite that they cut me off too much so for me, LONG LIVE CROP TOPS! I love this Alo Yoga Bae sweatshirt. You can never go wrong with a basic heather grey sweatshirt and the length of this one is great. My puffer vest is also faux leather and is from Zara. This is totally going to become a wardrobe staple here in SoCal. The weather is so mild, my vest will give just the right amount of warmth when needed. The vibe felt a little edgy with the leather leggings, sweatshirt and vest so I decided to build on it with my Dr. Martens Pascal boots. Although Docs are a classic and have been around forever, combat boots are a major trend right now, one that I was afraid to hop on but am so glad I did. They are surprisingly comfortable (I think that has something to do with the soft Pisa leather and not the stiff original smooth leather) and just a super cool boot that will stand the test of time. Stay tuned for more on these guys soon! I would wear this outfit anywhere – lunch/brunch with friends, running errands or even to a casual winery or dinner.

Next up is a dressier look. These leggings are so versatile you really can make them work for any occasion but my thought with this one was date night, a dinner party or a night out with the girls!

No shock here, I paired the leggings with a short sweater from Zara. The bright pink really pops against them and makes it look chic without being too much. This sweater is a 10/10 recommend! The fabric is so soft and comfortable, I’ve worn it twice already and ordered the pale yellow one as well. When I like something, I will buy it in multiple colors – if it works, I stick with it! I layered two of my favorite Bauble Bar necklaces to dress it up. My Bennett necklace and my small Michel necklace. I finished off the look with my tried and true Stuart Weitzman black suede Nearly Nudes. I love them and will never give them up, simple black block heels are a wardrobe staple. The heel is roughly three inches and very comfortable, an all night shoe for sure. If you haven’t noticed by now, I try and stick with simple pieces and elevate them as much as I can. Fashion to me doesn’t need to be busy, simplicity works just fine.

Last is another layered look. I have yet to find a shacket that I love, so the hunt continues. For now I love the way this old Zara oversized top looks over my basic ribbed white tank.

I will have to look for something similar for you because this army green top has been a go to in my closet for years, its got this paint splatter motif and its such a good neutral and layering piece. I have about five of these tanks, such a great Target find (only $8!!). It comes in so many colors and the high neck is great – it gives the look for less compared to the WSLY Rivington tank. I’m wearing mules here to elevate the look so its not too casual and something I could wear anywhere. My Gucci mules are an investment and believe me, I saved up for these bad boys but mules are a staple. You can get the same look for less anywhere, there are so many options but I personally love these from Amazon, the reviews look great. Im wearing my small Michel necklace here again. I’m loving the curb chain necklaces, they make a statement but a modest one. You’d see me in this running errands, a park play date, drinks at friends house or lunch date.

Hopefully I’ve given you some leather legging inspo – this was fun for me to put together!


Petite Styling Tips and Tricks

The average American woman is 5’4. I am 4’11, thats a five inch deficit which is pretty significant when it comes to clothing. The majority of clothing is tailored to the average woman, if not taller, which is hard for petites. I want to share my petite styling tips & tricks, because unless you’re incredibly wealthy and have all custom tailored clothing, you’re wearing ready to wear and fast fashion so we gotta work with what we got. Below are my hem hacks, crop top and high waist endorsements, the importance of a heel and the beauty of a skort.

Wearing all the musts: heels, high waisted Agolde jeans hemmed by yours truly & cropped long sleeve polo from Zara.

My Hem Hack

Lots of brands offer petite sizing and companies like Abercrombie offer “short” inseams and even more recently, “extra short” (thank you!) but more often than not I am left with bottoms that fit great in the waist and through the legs but a lengthly amount of fabric at the bottom. I will always say find yourself a good tailor, there is no substitute for getting a proper hem done by a professional. I also recommend spending the extra bucks to have the original hem reattached if you go that route; however, if you don’t want the hassle, I have a trick up my sleeve.

Get a pair a good cutting shears. Not the scissors you have in your junk drawer (“draw” as I unapologetically say much to my husband’s dismay #Jersey), actual shears. They are made to cut through fabric and work great on denim. You can find them in craft stores but I found mine on Amazon and they are great.

I was inspired to get shears because raw (unfinished) hems were super on trend (and still are) so I figured, I can recreate that hem myself. The shears cut through like butter, making a nice clean line. Just measure where you want the jeans to hit, mark and cut them. I recommend washing and drying them first to allow for any shrinking. You can leave the edge as is once you make the cut OR if you don’t want to wait for the natural fraying, you can wet the hem with a little water, brush them out quickly to open up the weave and throw them in the dryer for 10 minutes. You will have to trim the threads every so often but it takes two seconds.

If you are intending to use the shears on fabric other than denim, I would say make sure you are okay with fraying – without traditional finished hem, fraying is almost inevitable. However, I have had success with lycra and fabrics alike with little to no fraying at all.

Crop Tops

Next up is the trendiest trend and one I hope NEVER goes away … the crop top! I am not endorsing the ones that come right under the bra line but instead the ones that hit just at the waist of your bottoms (I’ll get to that in a sec) or the ones that show a tiny bit of stomach (no more than an inch). I say this because crop tops create a cutoff line that makes you appear lengthier in your torso and I can use the help. More often than not you will see me in a crop top, not because I am trying to show skin, but because it gives the illusion of length. Crop tops are such a trending item, there’s no shortage of them anywhere. Play around with them, don’t write them off! If you can’t find one you like, you can always whip out your shears and make your own at a length you’re comfortable with ONLY IF you’re okay with fraying and/or the fabric curling.

High Waisted Bottoms

My favorite things in the world – high waisted bottoms! They have been a game changer for me because they draw the eye to the waist and the higher the waist, the longer the pants which elongates your body – this time in the legs and who doesn’t want longer looking legs? What’s better than high waist you ask? High waisted wide legs, I’ll explain. If you are going to go for this, find a really well fitting pair and make sure they fit snug in the waist and sit nicely along the outside of the thighs. These look amazing with heels, especially a block heel (IMO). I say this because if you hem them to wear with a specific heel height (wear the heels to the tailor or when you’re marking yourself) hem the pants just above the floor. I am talking millimeters of space between the floor and the pant. Worn with heels, the wide leg will cover the shoe and you will only see your pants from the waist to the floor adding whats that now? More Length! You can reference what I am talking about in the photo in this post.

The Power of a Heel

It’s no secret heels are your friend (if you want them to be) and it doesn’t take a genius to understand if you add a heel, you physically add height and length. There are heels that help more than others, and not necessarily the higher the better! First up are skin toned heels. If you have a classic pump or sandal that is close in color to your skin, they almost blend in and create a natural appearance of height.

I strongly suggest a pair of THIN strappy sandals. I’m talking thin toe strap and ankle strap, the less shoe, the more it looks like its all you. I absolutely love my Stuart Weitzman Nudists but I know they are a splurge – full disclosure: I got them at a discount. There is no shortage of budget friendly options out there, like these!

Another option if you’re open to the trend would be clear heels, they offer an updated twist to the tonal options and are available in pumps and sandals. The idea here also being the less shoe you see, the more it gives off the look that its all you.

The Skort

When you’re petite and in the market for a mini skirt, they won’t always be mini on you. Instead of going through the hassle of hemming yet another bottom, might I suggest the skort. A pleated tennis skirt or school uniform may be all that comes to mind but thats not all that exists.

I am wearing skorts in both looks, and they’re not at all what you’d expect. I seek skorts out because they tend to be more petite friendly than your average mini skirt. Because of the extra layer of protection from exposure (the built in shorts) the length on these bad boys tends to be a bit shorter thus allowing the look of a mini skirt without having to alter it. And don’t forget, throw some heels on to make those gorgeous legs look even longer!



Welcome to SomethingSmallSoCal!

Hi! I’m Christine Moller, lover of my little family and fashion! If you didn’t catch it from the name, I am small (like 4’11 small) and I live in Southern California.

I am married to my ALMOST high school sweetheart, Jake (we met in HS but didn’t start dating until freshman year of college) and I am the Mama to most special little boy, Oliver.

We are New Jersey natives (yes I love Bruce Springsteen and yes I am very guilty of fist pumping). We relocated to Orange County, California two years ago pursuing an incredible career opportunity for Jake. Moving was the hardest thing I had ever done, but I have grown so much stronger because of it and wouldn’t change it for the world.

Prior to moving, I worked in the fashion industry for roughly ten years, with eight of them spent in amazing New York City. I always had a flare for fashion, even my Mom will tell you that as a kid I was a nightmare about picking out my OOTD because I would constantly change my mind. I was also the girl who saw The Devil Wears Prada in college and was like “OMG I want to be a part of that world”. I never made it working for Vogue, although I did walk through the doors and completely botched my first interview for an internship there, but I digress.

I worked as a Merchandiser in my first NYC fashion industry role and helped develop assortments and buys for Jones New York. I then made my way to Aeropostale where I become a Merchandise Planner in which I basically held the checkbook for the buyers and managed the numbers, forecasts and promotions. The bookend to my NYC fashion adventure was at the lovey Kate Spade New York – a quintessential NY brand. It was there that I really grew as a Merch Planner. I learned so much about the industry and product development and gained some forever friends. Leaving Kate Spade (and the NYC fashion industry) for California was really hard but it brought me here.

I am now a stay at home Mom to my Ollie. It was a really hard adjustment at first but now I love it. I have however been searching for something to give me a little more purpose if you will. Don’t get me wrong, Oliver gives me more than I could ever imagine but going from a career Mom in a fast passed environment to a SAHM (stay at home mom) is a drastic change. Shout out to all the incredible SAHM’s out there, having been on both sides, this is the hardest job in the world sometimes. However, recently I realized I needed a little something for me to call my own and that’s how SomethingSmallSoCal was born!

I cannot wait to share all the things with you – the ups and the downs because no one’s life is perfect, despite what social media depicts. SomethingSmallSoCal won’t be solely a fashion blog but instead an all encompassing lifestyle blog that shares real life experiences. My hope is that SomethingSmallSoCal is a place where women can inspire other women and have fun too. Thanks for reading and I hope you love what I have to share.



This is miscarriage.

This was not the launch I had planned and isn’t how I wanted to introduce myself but it seems fitting as its National Pregnancy and Infancy Loss Awareness Day. The picture below was taken the night I celebrated my 34th birthday with my husband and my closest California friends. On the outside it looks like everything is Hunky Dory (thanks Kathy Hilton) but it’s not. I am actually in the beginning stages of my third miscarriage in nine months. I decided to pull myself together and celebrate that night in spite of it because it was better than being home and alone with my thoughts. It was around then I decided I wanted this blog to a be a place that represents the good the bad and the ugly, aka real life. What you see on social media is not always what it seems and I hope to keep it as real as I can while still having fun on here.

With that said, this is my miscarriage story but I want to preface it by saying I am in no way shape or form seeking sympathy. Instead, I am hoping my story can help even just one person who may be struggling. The fact is more people struggle with miscarriage than you’d ever realize and I am one of them. I am one in four. Miscarriage strikes in roughly 1 in 4 women and I am hoping to break the stigma around taking about it. There shouldn’t be any shame or guilt surrounding pregnancy loss and the more support you have, the “easier” it is to get through …at least in my opinion.

So here goes…

Amidst the pandemic my husband Jake and I decided we wanted another baby.  We tried and got pregnant quickly.  My anxiety was at its peak because of the pandemic and being away from family for the holidays but once the dust settled, the excitement set in.  I went to my first ultrasound appointment around 6 weeks and there wasn’t anything in the gestational sac nor was there a little flickering heartbeat.  BUT everything else looked “beautiful” and it was still early so “let’s take another look in 10 days” they said.  Before those 10 days were up I started bleeding and I knew it was over.  Two days later I went for an ultrasound and it was confirmed, I was losing the pregnancy.  Mind you I was alone in a room with the technician.  I held my phone up so my husband could see the empty screen via FaceTime while he waited in the car.  I never thought this would happen to me let alone hearing the words without holding Jake’s hand because of a pandemic.  It was heartbreaking.  Once I got into the car we both cried and went home to our beautiful little boy and explained to him gently but honestly what was happening. For the next eight days I miscarried at home, it was awful but we got through it.

Fast forward three months.  I had a funny feeling so I took a pregnancy test.  I was pregnant!  I cried happy tears, hugged Jake and was so grateful and excited.  To top it off my parents were arriving that day for a visit for the first time in over a year! I tried to keep it a secret but couldn’t and we told them the good news.  We enjoyed the rest of their visit and then I went to my first doctors appointment.  I got my first round of blood work that day so we could monitor this pregnancy closely.  I got home and went to pee.  I wiped and saw what I was terrified of.  I was bleeding again.  I knew it was over AGAIN.  How could this be happening?  How?  The “good” news was it was earlier this time so the miscarriage process was shorter and less intense.  But the damage was done, I felt defeated.  How did I lose two pregnancies back to back when I have a perfectly healthy beautiful 3.5 year old?  Why?  What did I do wrong?  Is he our miracle baby?

Jake and I went for tons of genetic testing, 9-10 blood vials each and all came back normal.  Then I went for an HSG – a very invasive procedure that lasts only a minute or two but hurts like hell.  Again, alone in a room with doctors and machines because Jake wasn’t allowed to be with me.  When it was over I found out I have a “textbook” uterus and tubes and everything is normal.  The doctors left the room for me to get dressed and I just cried. I cried because I was alone, I cried because that procedure f*cking hurt and I cried because I had no answers, nothing was “wrong”.  Getting news that everything normal is a double edged sword – you’re so grateful to be healthy and have nothing wrong but angry you have no answers.  It’s so incredibly frustrating.

Jake and I decided to give my body a few months to rest and regulate before trying again. When I was ready, the ovulation test strips were whipped out and we started trying.  I was hoping it would happen quickly again so when it was time to take a pregnancy test and I got a negative, I kept testing until I got multiple negatives.  I finally accepted that I wasn’t pregnant this time.  That familiar feeling of defeat crept in but I decided to power through it.  Try again we shall I said, and we did just that. 

Four weeks later I started taking the cheap pregnancy tests. Across several days I kept getting faint positives and then took a clear blue early detection test and poof, I was actually pregnant! I cried happy/scared tears and immediately called my OBs office.  The nurse calls back extremely excited for me and orders blood work.  I go in for my first of many draws.  Pam (the nurse at my OB and my new BFF) calls the next day.  My HCG is showing I am pregnant but very low at 15 – I am to test again in a week.  The next week it is over 200 so we are all feeling encouraged. The following week it’s over 2600 – this is amazing news and Pam calls me as soon as she’s in the office to tell me how excited she is for me.  We schedule my confirmation of pregnancy appointment with my doctor.  This time Jake is allowed to join me (yay for not having to do this alone anymore!) and my doctor says the whole office is rooting for me.  We discuss the usual things and I get all my lab orders including that of the dating ultrasound which is scheduled for a week later. Oddly enough, Jakes parents are arriving that day for their first visit ever. We keep the secret for a night (although they were on to me when I didn’t have any wine with dinner) and told them the good news the next day. They were thrilled for us and made the rest of their visit that much sweeter.

Ultrasound day rolls around and I go in thinking I’m 7 weeks 2 days but the ultrasound dates me at 6 weeks 1 day; however, this time there is a yolk sac and a fetus in the gestational sac!  There’s even a flicker on the screen!  The happy tears stop when the tech tells me the heartbeat is very slow at 48bpm.  The joy is gone and I immediately detach myself – I know that at this point the heart rate should be between 100-150bpm.  I am defeated again and hope is gone.  I am just waiting to lose this one too. I am told to stay positive because its not over til its over and we can check baby’s heartbeat again in a week.

A few days later I start spotting and after speaking with my doctor we are pretty confident I am going to miscarry again given all the facts. I have already decided that I will not miscarry at home again and I want a D&C (a surgical procedure in which everything is removed) and my doctor swiftly agreed to that. That day I cried harder than I think I ever have to Jake and my best friend, so much so that I haven’t cried since, almost as if there is nothing left. I had an ultrasound the following week to confirm the miscarriage and to no ones surprise there was no longer a heartbeat and baby had passed. My D&C was scheduled for the following week and thankfully my body threw me a bone and the spotting stopped so I didn’t have to manage anything at home. I wont go into details about surgery but in pre op I had a moment alone and said my goodbyes to another angel baby. Everything went well and I recovered quickly.

This is just the beginning and our journey is no where near over. Since having the D&C and getting results back, we learned that baby had a chromosomal abnormality. The pregnancy would have never made it to term. I now know I didn’t cause this and it wasn’t my fault, none of them were. I have closure and with that we have made the decision to move onto IVF. We are very excited and hopeful to meet with an excellent fertility specialist in less than two weeks, hoping to start the process before the end of the year. I am crossing my fingers and toes that I will carry a pregnancy to term in 2022. Please know it is not lost on me how fortunate we are to be able to pursue IVF treatments and that we have access to incredible doctors in Southern California. Trust me, I have been counting my blessings everyday.

Please stay tuned for fertility updates, but in the interim I will be at home, smothering my little boy with all the love and kisses as I have never been more grateful for him. To anyone reading this that is struggling with getting pregnant, staying pregnant, grieving the loss of child, adopting, surrogacy, choosing not to start a family or anything in between, know you are not alone. I see you and am thinking of you. If you have suffered loss, know you did absolutely nothing wrong and it’s not your fault, it took me a while to accept that, but it’s the truth.