Tuesday, September 27, 2016

MommyCon OC 2016 Recap


Well, we did it again! Another successful trip to MommyCon OC where the Thriving Wives took the day by storm.


We were so excited to be welcomed back as part of the media team and honestly couldn't love getting our fancy badges any more. I mean nothing is more fun than being a Thriving VIP!


Especccciiiaalllyyyy, when there is a free breakfast involved! We started our day chatting with other local bloggers and stuffing our lactating/pregnant selves with delicious parfaits and baked goods. It was honestly a lovely way to kick off another wonderful experience.



Once we were full and had made our game plan, we decided to take in the schedule one last time to go over our plan of attack.



Since Nic is a serious birth professional, she of course knew 99.9% of the people there...which I must say was super fun and made me feel like a quasi-celebrity by association. With her needing to make her thriving rounds and our new mommy to be/Thriving Wife love April joining us, we had a lot of ground to cover!



As we started taking in the vendors (my favorite part) we of course had to stop chat it up with all of Nic's birth "tribe". It was so nice to talk to all these strong, motivating women while feeling my little man squirm inside my belly. April and I were taking it alllllll in!



Once the girls let me decide our route (I am rather particular in how I like to proceed through these sort of "conventions"...I can't miss anything), we hit the ground running.

I of course needed to check out these Farm Fresh to You boxes. I LOVE farm fresh produce and goods and delivered? DONE!



With Nic rocking her own jujube backpack, it seemed only appropriate that she model in front of their killer display. While I am not yet an owner, almost all my friends are and they have nothing bad to say!


Stunning model, stunning.
What lactating mommy doesn't love herself some delicious treats that ALSO increases milk production...we do! After some brownie bites and lemonade we were feeling really good about MilkyMama and their selection of yumminess.


We popped over to Motherlove to see if there were any new products we needed to be aware of. Since Nic and I were already familiar with their lactation products and I am a HUGE fan of their green salve we wanted to make sure not to miss out on anything!



As we are continually "striving to thrive" we loved getting our hands on this amazing book of daily inspiration for pregnant mommies. We met the authors (two super cute sisters) and Nic hit it off so well she even got a free copy! Looking forward to getting my own copy for my next pregnancy!


These two gorgeous-es sharing the love!
As one who is essential oil obsessed it seemed only natural that I pop over to check out these roll ons and sprays. I loved their concoctions!



We obviously LOVED this flyer for Whole Life & Services and had to check it out! I mean who doesn't love fight club but with hugs and healthy stuff?! WE DO! Amazing natural products for a price that won't break your wallet. Check it out!



With the vendors being full of information and samples (our fave) we were very pleased with this year's selection. Next up, speakers! Since I am a cloth diapering mommy and our girl April is going to also give it a go we decided it best to sit in at the cloth diapering session.

While the information was mainly geared to mommies who cloth diaper themselves (meaning purchase their own stash and launder themselves) I did enjoy a refresher on how easy/cost effective it really is. Since I am a cloth diaper service mommy myself, (I just couldn't fathom doing it with twins) I couldn't relate to too much of the info. However, I did leave there with the wheels turing...could I really do this myself now? I have one on the way and two that are going to be out of diapers soon...was this the time? I decided it was and am now a fully fledged cloth diapering mommy!! Well...Mac will have service when he is born, but just for a short while I hope...

All in all, I must say it was another wonderful day at MommyCon OC. Spending time with my girls and like minded mommies was just what this preggo needed. I met some pretty amazing people, had excellent conversations and of course left with a killer goodie bag!

For all you So Cal Thriving Wives and Mommies who haven't yet attended, I gotta ask, "What are you waiting for?!". I know we can't wait until the next trip to see what other new and amazing products/mommy services are out there.  Hey, who knows, maybe our very own Nic might even have her own booth one day!

Strive to thrive, 
Em

Thursday, September 22, 2016

8 Easy & Affordable FALL-tastic Decorations


Come cool weather or not (more so on the not), when Labor Day weekend hits....it is time to decorate for Fall. I dare say I enjoy decorating for Fall more than Christmas sometimes. I mean it gets to stay up way longer and it is waaayyy less involved. Plus, after a long Spring and Summer getting back into the decorating spirit is a welcomed activity!

Here are my eight favorite and super affordable ways to sing Fall-a-lejua all throughout the house!

1. Assorted Colored Stones of Sorts. Whether marbles or jewels, big or small, anything in Fall colors will do. I have had these assorted autumn cuties for years and love that I can reuse them each season. On a platter, in a jar, sprinkled on a mantle...the list goes on! 


2. Fabric. Also something I acquired long ago, but have been so grateful to have stored away! In brown, bronze and orange, shiny and matte these signature pieces are perfect for "shwagging" any and all surfaces. With so many choices and coupons to use at the fabric store, make the tiny investment this season and you won't be disappointed when you use them again and again!



3. Sparkly Pumpkins.  When I found these minis at the Dollar Tree I snapped them up with the quickness. Something about pumpkins and glitter just really gets me going. My big guy was a 50% steal at Michael's with an additional 40% off!! I mean it was practically free which makes me love it all that much more.



4. Go-To Collection of Mini Pumpkins & Gourds. I again, have had these same supplies for years and always look forward to their annual debut. Did I also mention how incredibly easy and gorgeously green all this reusing is? With a simple sprinkle here and thought- out placement there, every surface in your house transforms making it oh so Fall-tastic!




5. Throw Pillows. These are the pillows I use year round. They are well made and have lasted a very long time. I add a vintage pillow cases in the "off season", but when Fall/Winter set in they are naked and in full force! I love their shiny burgundy color and that one side is silky smooth while the other has gold accents...they are perfect in their true form from September to December!


6. Leaves. While I personally am not a fake plant/silk flower girl, I have NO problem busting out some silk leaves in the Fall. Once you buy your first bag (or bunch depending on where you go) you will NEVER need leaves again! Also, there is no "real" leaf collecting, no "real" leaf mess and when your kids help you decorate (as mine did) there are no "real" leaves to crunch!



7. Thriving Art. This addition to my "Fall collection" is by far my favorite...and the most cost effective. Since the boys and I do art sessions pretty regularly it is easy to throw in some seasonal projects. This year, using my favorite non-toxic, water based finger paint (which was a phenom investment at Target for $10) we used fall colors to do some hand prints and smears. Once they hung to dry I simply cut them out in the shape of an autumn leaf and boom! Perfect art to add to the gallery!



8. Fall Candle. My Thriving Mommy and I have yet to get around to making an Autumn collection of our DIY candles, so I head to Target for their soy candles in my favorite scents. I can honestly tell you I burn these nonstop and am obsessed with how they make my entire home smell amazing! These are a must have when you do your Fall-fromation for sure!


With my house in "FALL" swing (ha, get it), I am starting to prepare for our big October - Outdoor Only - Halloween decorating party! The inside stays Fall-tastic all the way until we swap it out for Christmas...which I know will be here before I know it!

What are your favorite Fall accents to add to your home?

Strive to thrive, 
Em

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Family Fun on the Farm


As the seasons (finally start to) change, I am always excited for what our next adventure will be. Obviously, Fall is an easy one...Pumpkins Patches!

Granted, living in the country is not for everyone. But for this mommy, it is absolutely amazing. Especially when there are local farms everywhere just begging to be explored by me and my little men. One of our favorite adventures was visiting Kenny's Strawberry Farm where we were able to walk the grounds picking the sweetest, freshest strawberries to take home and enjoy.



We arrived right when the opened (my suggestion if you have little ones, get there early before it gets too crowded...and hot) and were the first to enter this field of juicy dreams.


We grabbed baskets...and of course, each of my children needed their own wagon...



We headed into the rows of strawberries and started picking...of course following all of Kenny's rules! The boys did a great job of making sure to get the best ruby red berries they could reach.



It seemed like we picked for only ten minutes before our baskets were full and the boys were covered in dirt...as boys should be!





We loaded the boys in the wagon (thankfully they were ready for a ride), and decided to see what else this little farm had to offer.


 We passed the inviting picnic area and headed to see the watermelons and tomatoes!




Paying for what you picked at Kenny's might have been my favorite part as you step into the most Thriving of little cottages to purchase your goods. Of course we had to get some jam and T-shirts to take home too!




With our new gear, pounds and pounds of berries and some jams to try we were ready to leave the farm and get home to the pool! In only an hour and a half we had picked, played and paid at Kenny's. Which I assure you was the perfect amount of time for two toddlers. But before leaving, of course we had to check out the big tractors...


Looking forward to Kenny's opening up again for pumpkin season as well as checking out the many other farms in our area. I love getting the boys out, exploring our country surroundings and buying local!

Are you a farm lover too? What is your favorite season for some family fun on the farm?

Strive to thrive, 
Em