A New Way Of Defining My Feminism

future is female kayla

A few weeks ago I asked Kayla, my just turned 5 year old, what she wants to be when she grows up.  She told me she wants to be “a teacher, then a mommy”.  I felt like I had been punched in the stomach.  Why does my little girl think you need to stop working when you become a mom? Is my 5 year old so jaded that she already thinks you can’t have it all? Can she really believe that a woman has to give up her career when she becomes a mother? Then I realized she must feel that way because of me.  I like to think of myself as a feminist, a strong independent woman who doesn’t need a man, after all, I do own my own business.  But I’m not.  I am dependant on my husband because my income is neither steady nor as substantial as his.

I was having a few drinks with a friend when I realized that I was in fact financially dependant on my husband.  I cried because I thought I was a feminist.  I have come to realize that I can rely on my husband’s income while still being a feminist because that is how I choose to live my life.  I grew up in a family that values education, and I always believed I would have a successful career.  I graduated from law school and passed the Florida Bar, but I do not practice law.  My husband is a firefighter who works 24 hour shifts.  If I was a lawyer, who would drop off and pick up the kids from school the days my husband was working?  Who would take them to karate, gymnastics and ballet? My mother is a biologist and professor while my father owned his own business.  Both my parents wouldn’t get home from work until past 7pm.  I was fortunate to have grandparents and babysitters to take me to extracurricular activities and I was only able to participate in those activities because of how hard my parents worked.  If I practiced law, we could hire babysitters and rely on grandparents, but I CHOOSE not to do that.  I could find a job as an attorney that paid well enough for my husband to stay home, but why would I ask my husband to sacrifice a career he loves so I could have a career I don’t even want? I want to have the ability to be there for my children and choosing to put my family before my career does not make me any less of a feminist.

I know that I am lucky and many families do not get to make the decisions we have made, that many do whatever they must do to survive, whether that is working a job they hate or having to stay home with their children when they want to work out of the home.  My kids are in preschool, so I get to work, and get a break because staying at home with your children is the HARDEST job of all, but I also can drop everything and pick my kids up early from school if they are sick or if I just feel like taking them out to lunch.

So my daughter may think she wants to stop working as a teacher when she has children and I am no longer disappointed by that or ashamed that it is because of the choices I have made, because the most important part of being an independent woman is to choose to do what you want, to choose to do what will make you happy.

Besides, Kayla is only 5, I’m sure she will change her mind about her career aspirations dozens of times before she even joins the workforce.  I hope when Kayla does get a job, there is no more wage gap; afterall, I am still a feminist.  My own struggle with coming to terms with my own feminism led to adding “The Future is Female” tees to the kd Closet Etsy shop.  No it is not an original idea or slogan, but a portion of the proceeds from every shirt sold is donated to The National Girls Collaborative Project which encourages girls to seek careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) fields.  I believe my son will be just as successful as his sister, so to me, The Future is Female means that there will be more opportunities for women in the future, that more women will at least have the same encouragement to pursue careers in fields that have been overwhelmingly male dominated.  And if Kayla wants to be a teacher, a career that is already dominated by women, good for her, as long as she gets paid the same as the male teachers.

future is female


Creating a New Way to Shop kd Closet

I recently made a very hard decision: kdCloset.com will no longer be shoppable, but don’t worry, you can still purchase designer new and like new maternity, baby and kids’ fashions through our eBay store and custom made to order items through our Etsy shop! kdCloset.com will still exist, but it will simply direct you to eBay or Etsy to shop or here to read our blog.

I am a work at home mom, working by myself, with no employees, though my husband, parents and even children help me out.  Since I began creating custom cups, tees and other items, I have been slacking on the resale part of kd Closet.  It was a difficult decision, but as most entrepreneurs learn quickly, making tough decisions is a major part of owning your own business.  Instead of maintaining three online stores, I will only maintain two, which frees up time to add new resale clothing to the eBay store and to create new original designs for the Etsy shop.  Thank you for your understanding! If you are reading this and have kdCloset.com store credit, please click the contact link at the top.

To thank you for being a loyal reader and customer, use this link to save 15% on your entire purchase in our eBay Store: http://ebay.us/XXm10c and you can save 15% on your entire purchase from our Etsy Shop when you use KDCLOSET15 at checkout.

Derek’s 3rd Birthday Moana Luau Party

If you know me, you know that I love a good theme party.  I love having a 4 and now 3 year old because they pick the funnest themes for their birthdays.  Derek, the D of kd Closet, just turned 3 in July and wanted a Moana themed birthday party.  I could have just purchased the package that includes the plates, cups, balloons and goodie bags with a picture of Moana, but that would have been too easy. So I planned a luau…

My absolute favorite part of a theme party is the clothing.  Derek dressed as Maui and wore a leaf grass skirt (faux) and we covered his chest in temporary tribal tattoos.  Kayla wore a Moana inspired dress.  My husband and I wore tropical attire as well because I will make sure everyone in our household participates, even unenthusiastically.

Since most of the kids attending were between 2 and 4, we set up sprinklers and rented an inflatable water slide instead of having a pool party.  Obviously the waterslide was a volcano with water “lava” flowing. derek-3rd-bday-lava-slide.jpgWe have our own little bounce house, slip n slide and swing set so we held the party in our backyard.  We decorated with palm fronds and luau decorations that were mostly from the dollar store.  We set out leis so all of the guests could in the luau mindset and these doubled as part of the party favors.

Derek 3rd bday instax pics
Instax Pics

I love having photo booths at our parties, even though I think I use it more than any of the guests.  We used a tropical beach backdrop and set out a Fuji Instax camera.  If you are as old as me, you may remember using actual film to take pictures, except the Instax prints a mini picture on the spot instead of needing to take your roll of film to be developed.  The kids at the party however, were a bit confused, but loved having a physical picture to keep.

We served pizza, subs, Hei Hei chicken bites, Maui Onion dip, and a cupcake birthday cake that was circular (sort of) and decorated with the heart of Tefiti swirl.  We had a pineapple shaped pinata that we filled with candy and Moana themed favors like stamps and stickers.

Finally, instead of traditional goodie bags, our guests were given a Maui inspired tee shirt, the kd Closet Etsy shop bestseller. Click HERE to order your own Maui shirt.  Each shirt is custom made to order so you can choose a different color or size or personalize with a name.  Visit our Etsy Shop or send me an email to create your own tee.  I can even work with you to create customized favors like tees, bags or cups for your little one’s birthday party!

maui shirt x4

Celebrating My Kids’ Differences

My children are too young to know it, and it really shouldn’t make a difference, but they truly are unique. Of course they have their own personalities and quirks, but I doubt they will meet many people with backgrounds as diverse as theirs. My mother is Chinese, my father is Jewish and a mixture of Eastern European heritages. I grew up in an incredibly diverse town in New Jersey so though no one was exactly like me, most of my friends were of mixed races too.  In fact, I didn’t realize being bi-racial was unique until I went to college.  My husband is white, he is Irish and Italian and was raised Catholic, but grew up in the same small town and was exposed to a variety of cultures as well. This means our children are multiracial, which shouldn’t matter in the melting pot of America, but it does, especially in the small town in Florida where we live now.

We have chosen to raise our family by exposing them to their various cultures and religions. We have decided their differences should be celebrated, not hidden, and I hope that this remains the case when they are old enough to realize they are different than other kids. We celebrate Christmas and Hanukkah, Easter and Passover, Chinese New Year and St. Patrick’s Day. I know St. Paddy’s Day had real meaning in Ireland and is different than the green beer drinking fun we have in the states. But St. Paddy’s Day means the arrival of “Kiss me, I’m Irish” shirts in stores. Since my children are part Irish, I’ve always delighted in dressing them to “honor” their Irish heritage that one day a year.

It occured to me that because St. Patrick’s Day has become such a huge commercial holiday in the US, there is no shortage of Irish themed clothing and merchandise in stores, at least for that month or so between Valentine’s Day and Easter. But what about the other parts of my children? I have seen shirts from time to time celebrating Italian backgrounds, and there seems to be one Hanukkah themed shirt for every 20 Christmas ones, but  I had never seen a shirt actually celebrating Chinese culture. Yes, there are dragon shirts galore, but nothing truly embracing being Asian. So I decided to make one myself. And the idea to add custom shirts to the kd Closet boutique was born.

I began by designing shirts for my children, because of their unique cultural diversity and just recently added them to kdcloset.com. First I made tees for the kids that read “Mommy’s Lil Dumpling” with a pair of chopsticks. Is it a stereotype? Maybe, but I choose to embrace it and let my children be proud of being 1/4 Chinese.

Next I made “Mommy’s Lil Matzo Ball” shirts because it was spring and there was bunny and Easter egg merchandise everywhere,  but nothing to celebrate Passover, at least not locally in our small Southern town. So I made my own.

My kids call my mother-in-law Nonna, because she is Italian.  So then I made “Nonna’s Lil Meatball” shirts. I was having so much fun being creative and I love a corny pun, so I began making shirts inspired by Disney characters and hip hop music.

Adults liked my Wu Tang Clan inspired C.R.E.A.M (COOKIES Rule Everything Around Me) shirts so much that I began making adult sized tees too. I made a few Disney inspired ones that work both for kids and adults and make great matching tops for everyday or trips to Disney. The best part about making shirts is I get to have a creative outlet.  Every shirt is made to order, so custom colors, sizes and designs are all possible and I love working with people to design their ideal shirt!

Head over to kdcloset.com and check out the customized section. Soon I will add bags, cups and other personalized items so you can find both made to order and designer fashions at a great price!

Spring Holidays

easter hip hop bunny kids

Spring used to be my favorite season when I was growing up in New Jersey. I loved feeling the winter chill disappear and seeing flowers begin to bloom. I also love Spring holidays! I was raised Jewish and my husband was raised Catholic, so our family celebrates Easter and Passover. If the holidays fall around the same time, we try to go to New Jersey to celebrate with our families. Our children are only 2 and 4 so they don’t really understand the meaning of the holidays, but they do get excited to see their cousins. I struggle with finding appropriate clothing for the kids (and myself) because the spring in the Northeast is so unpredictable. This year both holidays are in mid-April and when we get to Jersey, it may still feel like winter or it could be warm and mild. I have found the best solution is to dress in layers. Kayla has several spring dresses to wear to the various family get-togethers we will be attending. If it’s warm she can wear the dresses on their own. If it is chilly, I will add a cardigan and tights. Derek is even easier to dress in layers. I am planning on putting him in polo shirts and khakis. If it is cold, I can add a sweater on top. The kd Closet boutique has a great selection of dressy fashions for your little one to wear to a Passover Seder or to meet the Easter bunny. Search Easter on kdcloset.com or browse our Special Occasion categories for each size. We even just launched a new sort function where you can view newly added fashions first!

I have been toying with the idea of adding a custom designed section to kdcloset.com where you purchase order custom tee shirts and other items made to order and personalized if desired. I’m testing the waters with an exclusive Hip Hop Easter Bunny tee that will not be available on the website. Check it out:

hip hop bunny final pic

Baby, Toddler and Children’s size are only $14.99 shipped and Adult sizes are only $17.99 shipped. These exclusive shirts are made to order so I will only be accepting orders until March 31. If you would like to order one, please send an email to abby@kdcloset.com with your full name, shipping address and size. I will send you a PayPal invoice and you have 24 hours to pay or your order will be cancelled. This shirt is only available in gray with a black bunny and white text. Please choose from the following sizes:

🐰6-12 Months
🐰12-18 Months
🐰18-24 Months
🐰Kids XS
🐰Kids S
🐰Kids M
🐰Kids L
🐰Adult S
🐰Adult M
🐰Adult L
🐰Adult XL

Happy Easter and Passover! Please commment with your favorite tips for Spring weather dressing!

Working Out With Kids


Before I opened kd Closet, my husband and I owned a gym.  We went out of business several years ago, but working out is still a major part of our lives.  I’m one of the unlucky people who can exercise hours a day and it won’t make a difference unless I watch what I eat.  So I’ve gained a bunch of weight since we closed the gym, even though I work out longer and harder than ever before.  In fact, this is the most I’ve ever weighed and not been pregnant! So I have selfish intentions with this post, I’m publicly declaring I’m too fat and I need to clean up my eating.  My hope is that now I need to be accountable to you and in a few months, I will write about some healthy, quick and easy recipes I’ve used to lose weight and feed my family.

I’m not an expert on fitness, though I was certified to teach group exercise classes for years, but I am an expert on working out with kids.  Mindset is better motivation to exercise than anything else.  I truly enjoy working out so I want to do it.

38 Weeks Pregnant with #2

Here I am 38 weeks pregnant with my son, about to teach a Spinning class.  I like working out so much (and hoped it would help me go into labor) that I continued teaching until the day before being induced with both babies.

I still love exercising and am a much better mom and wife if I take an hour or two to get a workout in, five or six days a week.  But once I had kids that became a bit more challenging.  The easiest way to exercise with kids is to workout before they wake up.  A few days a week I go to a 6am Crossfit class at Crossfit Oviedo, an amazing place just a few miles from my house. If you live in the Orlando area, go check out Crossfit Oviedo, you will get an awesome workout in less than an hour! I get home just after 7 and can get them ready for preschool and out the door before doing cardio or getting to work in my home office.  I have it easier than other parents because I am my own boss, make my own hours and work from home.  This also means work is not really an excuse to skip a workout.  If you ever see me post on  Instagram at 8am, then I am multitasking and using the stairclimber while I create kd Closet social media posts.  If you see me dropping my kids off at school, a sweaty stinky mess, I swear I’m not a dirtbag, I’m just on mom duty between workouts.




On weekends or days the kids do not have school, I like to bring the kids to the gym with me.  They play in the gym’s kid’s club where they meet new friends, get a change of scenery and play with new toys.  This isn’t always an option because the kid’s club is only open limited hours and if we can’t get ourselves together and loaded in the car early enough, we can’t go to the gym together.  My other weekend fitness option is to get the kids involved in a workout.  We live down a dirt road so even a short run pushing the kids in the jogging stroller is a great workout! After we run, my husband and I will set up stations in the yard so we can take turns playing with the kids and working out.  We try to incorporate strength and cardio into most of our exercises because our kids don’t have the longest attention spans.  And as a mom, I have become the queen of multitasking.  Some of our favorite exercises are jump squats and lunges, push ups, burpees, jumping rope with a weighted jump rope, and box jumps.  We try to get the kids involved, if we do suicides, we encourage the kids to run along and race.  They have their own jump ropes, but they are only 2 and 4, so they don’t have the coordination to actually jump rope.  We use sidewalk chalk and play hopscotch, which can be challenging if you hold dumbbells and squat in each square. If the kids play on the swingset, we mount the TRX straps on the playset or do jump squats between pushes on the swings.   We even just got the kids these adorable adjustable dumbbells.  They are super light when empty and can be filled with water or sand to add weight.  Sometimes we even just do a yoga video in the playroom.  The kids play with their toys, but wander over from time to time to do a bit of yoga.


Father Son Beast Mode

The best way I have found to workout with kids is to do an active family activity.  We drive to the state park just up the road and go on a short hike.  Our jogging stroller converts to a bike trailer so we go out to brunch, go for a bike ride on a bike path, then end the ride at the frozen yogurt shop- I did tell you nutrition was my problem, right?

I know my family is more fortunate than most, we live in Florida where it is mild enough for fun outdoor adventures year-round.  We were able to save some equipment from when we owned a fitness center so we did not need to invest in a home gym.  My husband is nice enough to start getting the kids ready on days I am at early morning crossfit workouts.  The gym I have a membership at has a great play area for the kids with sweet and caring staff.  So trust me, I get that many of you may not find it as easy as I do to work out, but it will change your life. I have more energy and patience when I get to work out.  I’m nicer to everyone when I take a bit of time for myself.  Best of all, I know that I am setting a good example for my children.  I hope that exposure to health and fitness at such a young age will make them choose playing outside as opposed to playing video games when they are older.

So what are your tricks for fitting fitness into your lives? Do your kids like to workout with you? What are some active activities you do as a family?


Family Photo Shoots

The kd Closet family just had our first “real” professional family photo shoot a few weeks ago and it was a blast! Of course I want to show off the amazing pictures shot by Serena Nicole Studios, but I also want to share what I learned.  We have done photo shoots in chain stores, which are fun and the pictures are great, but our experience with Serena was totally different.  The pictures are truly unique and were taken in nature as opposed to a generic backdrop.  Serena is a true professional and a master at editing…my arms are not that skinny and I usually have more than one chin!

kd Closet is a kid’s fashion boutique, so my priority was styling our wardrobe! I did not want our family to be too matchy-matchy, but I also wanted to look put together.  I decided to start with one color (blue) that all of our outfits would have and built our wardrobes from there.  Kayla, my now 4 year old, is ALL girl, she loves pink and is the most comfortable in a dress, so I made sure to incorporate her preferences into her wardrobe choice.  If you have a little girl who is more of a tomboy, don’t force her to wear a dress.  She will be uncomfortable and it will show in the pictures.  Derek, my 2 year old, is a mad man who is always on the move.  He is totally comfortable in button downs and khakis, mostly because he is pretty vain and likes to admire himself, but I wanted some of his fun personality to show so he wore Nike Air Maxes instead of dressier shoes.  Once the kids had outfits in coordinating colors, my husband and I picked clothing that included blue.  In the past I would have shied away from so many contrasting patterns, but I think it is more interesting and makes for a better picture.  If you’re reading this, you’re probably a mom which means you have to have at least one friend who sells LuLaRoe and posts pictures on Instagram of themselves in leggings with non-matching tops.  (No offense if you are THAT lady)

Once I had styled our family and decided on wardrobe, I became nervous about the actual photo session.  Everyone knows how unpredictable kids can be and when you are paying for a small window of time that can’t be extended because the sun will set, it can be even more stressful.  Serena, the photographer, helped calm my nerves because she sent a questionnaire ahead of time about our family and our preferences.  I’m a huge control freak, so knowing what we were getting into ahead of time helped.  As well as remembering the most important part: to have fun! Check out our family pictures below, I think we were comfortable and had fun, which shows through our genuine smiles and real laughs.

We had such a great time, that I plan on scheduling annual family photo shoots with Serena Nicole Studios.  You can find Serena’s website here, she is local to Orlando, but travels around the country photographing families and may be in your area soon.  If you have an upcoming photo shoot, why spend a ton of money on an outfit your child will only wear for a few hours? The online boutique at kdCloset.com is filled with new and like new upscale baby and children’s fashions.  We are always adding new items, so check back often for new arrivals! What are your photo session tips?


Being Pregnant… And Having Babies

I’ve only been pregnant twice, and I only have two children (for now), so I am no pregnancy or child-bearing expert, but I can tell you plenty about being pregnant and giving birth.  Don’t worry! This won’t be graphic post telling you all the gross things that babies do to your body.  I had very easy, healthy pregnancies and I am one of those people who actually enjoys being pregnant!  I was enormous, though I was teaching group exercise classes several times a week, in addition to my own workouts, I gained 60 pounds with each child.  In fact, it took me about 9 months to lose the baby weight with my first and I found out I was pregnant with my second a week after I got down to my pre-pregnancy weight!

Both my children were ten days late and neither of them wanted to evacuate without some help.  I was induced at 41 weeks with both children, but my birth experience was vastly different for each child.

I was admitted to the hospital to be induced with Kayla, my daughter, on Christmas.  After several rounds of medication, lots of pushing the button on the epidural machine and ALOT of pushing, she was finally born on December 28.  And yes, when she is older I will certainly be telling her how I was in labor for over 60 hours so she better appreciate me!

I was also induced with Derek and was in labor for more than 40 hours before getting a C-section because the umbilical cord was around his neck.  I never thought I would need a C-section, I don’t know why, but I skipped the C-section sections in baby books and scrolled right past information about C-sections in pregnancy apps on my phone.  One of the forms I was given at the hospital asked for my birth plan.  My birth plan was simple:1.EPIDURAL 2. No C-section

I don’t remember holding Derek for the first time.  My husband told me the nurse injected something into my IV as soon as the doctor pulled the baby out, the last thing I remember is asking why he wasn’t crying.  Then I woke up in the recovery room, extremely tired and fighting to stay conscious.  It turned out I was hemorrhaging and over the next few hours I was given eight bags of blood.  I would pass out, wake up to scream at the nurses to bring me my baby and some water, then pass out again.  I ended up having a second surgery to stop the bleeding that night and then spent several days in the ICU.  Fortunately, I delivered both babies at a Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women and Babies, so Derek was allowed to stay in my room, and he was perfectly healthy.

After having Derek, I was extremely angry.  I felt like I had been cheated out of my birth experience.  I was upset that he was not allowed to nurse immediately, I was sad I couldn’t remember the doctor putting him on my chest after the C-section, I was mad because I was in so much pain.  Everyone told me to just be grateful that the baby and I were okay…and that would upset me more than anything.  It took a year for me to realize that there is nothing wrong with grieving the birth experience I missed out on.  Yes, it could have been worse, but even if Derek and I were healthy, I was allowed to be upset.

So after my pregnancy and birth experiences, I have learned 2 important lessons:

  1. If you are pregnant with your first child, enjoy every second of it and pamper yourself.  If you have any more babies, you will be chasing around the older ones and will never get to relax.
  2. Even if you have no expectations for giving birth, you may be surprised or upset by your birth experience.  And that is fine, though having a baby is joyful, it is scary and painful and maybe even traumatizing.

What was your birth experience like? Do you enjoy being pregnant?

Newborn Kayla
Newborn Derek

First blog post

Welcome to kd Closet! My children, Kayla (the K) and Derek (the D) were my inspiration for kd Closet. I started kd Closet because I love dressing my children in designer clothing, but like most moms, I do not want to spend too much on an outfit my child will wear a handful of times before outgrowing.  I began by selling my childrens’ clothing on Ebay.  I owned another business at the time and realized I was devoting hours to photographing, writing descriptions of what I was selling, communicating with potential buyers, packaging sales and going to the Post Office to ship items.  I had a career, 2 children, a husband, 3 cats, a dog and a house to look after and quickly came to the conclusion it just wasn’t worth the time and effort.  But I was looking for a career change and figured there must be plenty of other busy families with gorgeous outgrown clothing just sitting in bins waiting to be brought to Goodwill, so kd Closet was born!

Selling on kdCloset.com gives you an opportunity to clean out your kids’ closets and make money without leaving your house.  The process is designed to be quick and easy, after all, who has time to individually tag and list items for a consignment sale? Click here to request a prepaid mailer, fill it with your maternity and children’s fashions that comply with our standards, and drop it at the Post Office or give it to your mail carrier.  You will be paid within 30 days of our receipt of the package, regardless of if your items have sold, you literally do not need to leave your house to make money! We have extremely high standards for everything we buy and sell; we only accept higher end brands in pristine condition.  When you request your prepaid mailer, you have the option of choosing to have anything we cannot purchase donated or having the unpurchased items returned to you.

I am so excited that you have chosen to check out kdCloset.com!  Although my business is buying and selling children’s fashions and I am certainly not an expert on children, I will be writing about my experience with my own children who are now 2 and 3.  They are out of the baby stage (FINALLY) but it was recent enough that I can remember pregnancy and labor so we will talk about my very different birth experiences in my next post.

Please follow kdclosetshop on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest where I post great discount codes, featured fashions and fun family pictures!