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Lorraine is a style obsessed mama to two young kids, a wife to a supportive husband and a family photographer. Lorraine graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology in 2006, with a degree in advertising photography. She enjoys quiet moments, silly kids, clothes, shoes, coffee and a little wine too. Can't get enough of her here on FredParent? Check out her personal blog: Rain in Style.


Rain in Style

The Mom Style Rut

4 Ways to Refresh Your Wardrobe

April showers bring May flowers...and May brings us Mother’s Day. It’s fitting. As moms, we make sure all of our flowers are taken care of, we give them the strength to grow and relish in their beauty. Sometimes though, it’s mom who needs a little boost. Getting ourselves out of the mom style rut - or even getting away from the “mom comes last” mentality - is a hurdle we’ve all either gone through or are currently in. It’s time, though, to kick that mama guilt to the curb. Break out of the style rut and into a new and stylish you. But how?

Let’s start with these four easy steps to up your style game.

First, plan your outfits ahead of time.

I have a few weeks of outfits hanging in my closet. It makes it easier in the morning since I get dressed before having coffee. It also helps with variety. Often we get stuck in a jeans and t-shirt rut. Toss a dress or a skirt in the rotation to keep them guessing.

PlanOutfitsEscapada skirt found at ReRun in Downtown Fredericksburg

Add layers to your outfits.

Throw a jacket on over your dress, or with your leggings and a tunic. Athleisure is big right now, and if you love your leggings and a top, great! Try adding an anorak style jacket or a jean jacket to look easily pulled together and chic.

Jacket by BooHoo Boutique, J Brand Jeans and Vince Camuto booties

Get some fabulous accessories.

Yes, babies grab at necklaces, hair and pretty much everything. If that’s where you are, try earrings and a bracelet. Accessories can turn a blah outfit into something awesome and Pinterest-worthy! Look for bags with some sassiness and jewelry with a wow factor. I love Nickel and Suede’s earrings. I also love statement necklaces (just don’t wear big earrings with a statement necklace). You can easily jazz up your t-shirt and jeans with big earrings, a statement necklace or an eye-catching clutch.

JacketBagStudio M jacket, J Brand jeans and Betsey Johnson bag

Vary your shoes.

Flip-flops and sneakers are comfortable, but try a cute pair of booties, wedges, or strappy sandals. You might find they inspire you to break free. I might be biased, I mean I am a shoe lover, but they do have a way of making or breaking your outfit.

BootiesSam Edelman booties

If these four things don’t work to break your style rut, then why not try a subscription box service. I have been doing Stitch Fix for a few years now. They are a great way to try pieces that you wouldn’t think to pull for yourself. It’s convenient too. You can try everything on at home! No worries about having screaming kids in the dressing room with you. Check out their website!

Bonus: Remember to keep second-hand stores in mind when shopping. Not only are they a great way to revamp your wardrobe while keeping a savvy eye on spending, but they also offer a less expensive way to try different styles. Trying on clothing that might not seem like “you” could prove to be your inspiration to break free. So, what do you say? Let’s go shopping.

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Mom Time...Treat Yo Self

Mother's Day is coming up....not my favorite holiday, I admit. I've said it before, and I will say it again... I love being a mom, but that usually means I am still a mom doing all the normal mom things, even on Mother's Day. I did buy myself some pretty awesome gifts though. LOL. So there's that.  

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My style column in the May issue of Fredericksburg Parent talks about how to get out of your mom style rut. But I thought maybe here I would talk about reinvesting in ourselves as women, and not just as moms. Taking time for yourself, to feel like you belong to you. It's important to know that we have an identity and a purpose other than mom. So, grab a coffee...or wine (I won't judge) and let's chat.


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Really give it some thought - do you feel like you define yourself differently after becoming a mom? Do you find that being a mom has replaced or overtaken being a woman? Are there times when you simultaineously love being a mom but also kind of hate it? Ever wish you could regain that sense of individuality you once had? It's tough, because I know we all want to do our very best for our kids. But what if I told you putting some time into ourselves won't do irreversable damage to our's actually the opposite.


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For me, reinvesting in myself meant taking time every day to feel my best. I get up and get dressed and I make absolutely sure that there is time set aside every day to get my workout in. No excuses. Often this means that I am up at 5:45 every morning, before my kids wake up, getting dressed and making myself feel presentable (hello, magic concealer and mascara). It also means that I am doing my workouts after they are in bed at night, usually around 7:30pm. For now, this works for me. As they get older, and their sleep schedules change, my times might change as well. Although, there is value in your kids seeing you workout...mine sometimes join in if I am doing it earlier.  

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Are there activities or hobbies that you once loved but now can't seem to find the time for? Do you find that you put yourself last more often then maybe you should? Yes, you are a mom, and, yes we have responsibilities, but I'd like to encourage you to make yourself a priority. Want to start reading again? Set some time aside for it. Want to start working out again? Make as hard of a commitment to your own health as you do for your kids. It's necessary.  

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Even if all you want to do is shower it. Take it a step further and put on a cute outfit and go show the world how amazing you are. I strongly believe that kids need to see us moms as more than just their moms. They need to see us as our own person, as a woman taking on the world. To me, that's a decent life lesson.  




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Date Night Ready

Here at the Serbinski household, date nights are a must. We are lucky in that my in-laws live close by and they are able to watch our kids overnight! Once a month or so, we make plans for the kids to go to their grandparents' house so that my husband and I can enjoy some time alone. It works out well because our kids love being there...who wouldn't when you get cookies and ice cream for breakfast?!?! In taking this time apart, we are purposefully showing both our kids, and ourselves, that mommy and daddy have lives separate from them, and that we need to honor the time to reconnect. We existed before them, and we will remain even when they are grown. It's important not to forget that. 

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But what do we do with our time? I admit that Fredericksburg isn't exactly a night life hot spot. But then again, who needs late night activities when you are usually in bed by 9pm... am I right? We are lucky enough to have some pretty cool friends; sometimes we go out on couple dates. Like this past fall, we went out to the Cider Festival that was at the agricultural fair grounds. If you've never been, I highly recommend it. We got discounted tickets on Groupon, and it was a lot of fun. You get to taste pretty much every cider known to man... yes I mean hard ciders, you know, the good kind. They had bands playing..they even had cider doughnuts. I mean really?!?!

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We also LOVE comedy shows. I love laughing. Sometimes I laugh so hard I can't breathe. My son does this too, and then I laugh at him because he is laughing so hard. And then we both can't breathe. We have been to the Funny Bone in RIchmond to see Trey Crowder and the WellRED tour. Amazing. We also saw Trevor Noah in Baltimore, also amazing. Later this year, we are catching the WellRED tour agin, but this time in D.C.  

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Recently though, we went to my friend's comedy show which was held at Strangeways Brewery, here in Fredericksburg. It was a lot of fun, and very funny. Four comedians at a decent price with ample beer...#winning. Keep your eye out for future shows put on by him, Zoom Comedy. I mean really, who doesn't love to laugh? I don't know about you, but laughing until I can't breathe is one of my favorite pastimes. And it's a great date puts everyone in a light hearted, fun mood. So long as you are able to catch your breath after laughing so hard and no one has to do CPR to bring you back. ;) 

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Let's not forget about the bars and restaurants downtown. We also frequent those. My husband likes happy hours...ok, so do I. We usually try to hit up a bar that has a good happy hour. Usually that means Castigilia's...they also have a great rooftop bar now, so we will be up there often. Captial Ale house is also a favorite. They have the best beer selection, hands down. I've become fond of darker beers...which I used to despise. But when you have practically the entire world of beers at your fingertips, it's easy to find one you like. As a side note, this is our favorite people watching spot. Don't ask me why, it's just good people watching. Next year, go there on St. Patricks Day. It is SO MUCH FUN, complete with bag pipes and guys in kilts.  

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What are some of your favorite things to do for date nights? Movies? Bowling? Bars? All of the above??



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Waiting for Spring- Ideas for Transitional Outfits

So it's spring, right? Sometimes, I think Virginia didn't get the memo. Remember a few weeks ago when we got that snow storm?!? LOL.  

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I don't recommend actually wearing a tutu out in the snow for long. Of course it was cold, but I also wanted a tutu photo in the snow...don't ask. So, I guess that's one good thing that came from such a late season snow storm. I'm good now, ok mother nature?!? Let's move on. Anyway, here in Virginia, the weather in March and April can really ping pong between warm and cold. It is very unpredictable. So, I thought that I would talk about some easy things to do with outfits to accommodate the swings in temps.  


Maxi dresses/skirts

Long dresses and skirts are prefect for chilly mornings (and for those days when you don't want to I right?!?). Layer it with a jean jacket, that way if it warms up, it's easy to adjust accordingly. 

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Jean jackets or light weight jackets

As I said above, they are versatile and are leasy to layer over top of almost everything. Look for fitted jackets in light weight fabrics. My jean jacket here is by H&M, and the blue one is from Nicole Miller. Both are second hand. 

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Chambray shirts

Tie them over a dress for an extra layer.  Wear them open with many options. Roll your sleeves up to make it more casual. I love a good medium-light wash chambray for spring. This one that I am wearing is Buffalo by David Bitton. 

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Leggings under dresses

Right about now, I am SO TIRED of wearing tights. Mostly because I only have a few pairs of shoes that I like to wear with tights, and it gets rather boring. Try putting leggings on under your dresses so that you can wear shoes that don't work with tights (open toed, different colored, etc).  

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Plan ahead

Sometimes the weather changes like overnight. So, I try to have a few outfits planned that can work with either jeans or shorts. That way, if the weather at bedtime says 75 degrees tomorrow but you wake up and Mother Nature said "ha, just kidding" you are still prepared. Take that, Mother Nature.

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So while we wait for the warmer weather to FINALLY stay, I hope these few ideas can help you stay ahead of the weather game. If you need me... I will put my lucky floral shoes on and wait for the leaves to appear. Someone send wine...and coffee...and my allergy meds. LOL.  

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New in My Closet

This week I thought I would talk a little bit about my latest obsession and stepping out of your comfort zone. A few weeks ago, I found myself at TJMaxx...I am claiming amnesia as to how I got there.

"I don't know, husband...I just arrived there..."  

No, but seriously, TJMaxx is a fun spot to lose yourself for a few hours. While I was there, I found this red Michael Kors jacket.

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It was $60, a steal, really, for anything Michael Kors. But of course my thriftier side comes out and I contemplated whether I needed it that bad. Does anyone else do that at places like TJMaxx? Like "whoa, $60? I am in TJMaxx right?!?!" However, it was the last one in my size, and it fit well...but it was bright RED. Now, if you know me, or follow me on Instagram, you will know that I seldom wear red, or any bright colors for that matter. I am simply more accustomed to and comfortable in dark colors...especially black. It's where I live...on the dark side. So, like any true style loving person would do...I went to the interwebs and asked my friends in my outfit group. Their response was very clear...the coat must be mine. And so it was.

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Yes, even style bloggers need a little help sometimes. Especially with pieces that are out of our respective zones. But, thanks to my style enabling friends, it has become one of my favorite jackets, one that I didn't even know I needed! I even tracked it down online, so if you want one too, now is your chance. Macy's has it, here. I am wearing it in a XS petite. The hood is removeable, which I didn't know until I wore it a few times. LOL. That's quality investigative reporting right there. 

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 So, this coat has taught me a few things. Yeah, I know that's a little weird...I mean it's a coat. However, it reminds me to step out of my comfort zone and try something new. It also has taught me to trust my style instinct (is that even a thing?) You know that voice in your head that you can't ignore; no not your conscience, the other one saying you NEED that. But you are doubting yourself, and you walk around with it for an hour until you decide. Could have saved myself some time had I just listened in the beginning. Especially after I put it back once, then immediately regretted it and ran back over to get it. Seriously, I might have even apologized to it. Lesson learned.  

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What is something out of your confort zone? Is there a certain color that you never wear...or just prefer the dark side, like me? Well, I'd like to encourage you to step outside your zone occasionally. You never know what you might find.



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