Fab Moms: Laura Wifler of Oakland Avenue

It’s Friday so that means I have another fabulous mother to spotlight in my #FabMoms series!

Meet Laura Wifler. Laura and I are fellow Rookie Moms completing the 52 weekly Rookie Moms Challenges. Laura blogs over at Oakland Avenue from Twin Cities, Minnesota and I’m a huge fan of her blog! All of her posts are so relatable and I love her sense of humor and honesty about all things motherhood. You can also follow Laura on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Laura Wifler

  1. Who calls you mom and what’s his/her/their age?
    I’m blessed to have one little bambino, Eli, born in April 2013.
  2. What do you do? (SAHM, business owner, blogger, full-time/part-time employee, etc.)
    I typically consider myself a full-time SAHM but have recently realized that I’m more of a part-time WAHM, between my blog and picking up freelance writing projects here and there.
  3. What does a typical day look like for you? (And the word typical should be taken with a grain of salt – I know they’re hardly ever typical)
    Definitely tough to summarize my days into “typical,” but mainly, I try to get up a few hours before my son (he wakes at 8 a.m.) to shower, blog and have my coffee. Once he wakes we usually spend the morning at home, playing and catching up house work. After his morning nap, we almost always leave the house. Errands, a lunch date with a friend, or even just a walk to the park, we’re outta the house and hopefully outside. Once we’ve come back, I usually work on freelance writing projects and some additional housework while he naps. When he wakes, we usually take a longer walk before we come back so I can prep dinner. By the time it’s on the table, my husband is home and I’m off the clock. Well, at least I like to tell myself that. We play, maybe take another walk, go out for ice cream, etc. before it’s Eli’s bedtime. Once he’s down, all bets are off for what happens, but usually we’re super exciting  and I read blogs while my husband reads ESPN. We be cray.
  4. Any advice on how to “juggle it all”?
    Ha! We all know no one can, but if you’re going to try – my advice includes two things: Lists and coffee. Stay organized and stay awake. Oh, and set your expectations low. Good luck!
  5. When was the first time you really felt like a mother?
    Oh man, I’ll never forget this moment. Eli was about three weeks old and he was crying. I remember I was in a room with a handful of people and no one could calm him down and they were passing him around and offering tips to each other to try to get him to stop. I was dying to hold him and “just do it,” but I was patient. Finally they gave him back to me and immediately he stopped crying. It was the first time any baby in the world had done that for me and I felt like the queen of the universe. I just couldn’t stop smiling about it – I had to leave the room I looked so goofy!
  6. What’s the hardest thing about being a mom?
    Not feeling like you can meet your baby’s every need. Especially in that first year, so much of being a mom is guess and check, and each time a guess is wrong, you feel terribly! But you keep trying or eventually it seems to get better on it’s own – so you can just blame it on the all-inclusive “teething.”.
  7. What’s the most rewarding thing about being a mom?
    Seeing your baby smile at you and knowing they’re really saying, “I love you.” It’s so cheesy, I know – and I swore up and down I wouldn’t say stuff like this, but it’s true. I love the smiles and snuggles and just knowing how safe Eli feels with me. How he’ll sit on my lap or lay his head on my shoulder. It’s bliss and makes everything entirely worth it.
  8. What’s the funniest/most shocking thing that has happened to you since you’ve become a mom?
    Probably getting pooped on in the face. It was a series of unfortunate events where I wiped him “just so” as he was he was pooping (a common occurrence in the newborn stage). It was certainly shocking.
  9. I wrote a post about “mental snapshots” that I’ll always remember, even without a photo. I know it’s hard to choose one, but what is your favorite moment, or “mental snapshot”, with your little one(s) so far?
    Oh this is hard to choose! But if I have to pick, probably the time my son and husband reunited after being apart for three days. The way both of their faces lit up was priceless, and I just felt so blessed in that moment.
  10. What has been your best baby product purchase so far and why? What age is it appropriate for?
    I really love my Sakura Bloom Ring Sling. It’s super easy to put on and you can use it from newborn to about two or three depending on the size of your child. I also love having a car mirror. It’s so fun to look back at my son and make funny faces (While I’m in the passenger seat of course!) and it’s been super helpful to figure out if he’s fallen asleep!
  11. What’s something new you have learned about yourself after becoming a mother?
    While I may not be a “kid-person,” I can be an “Eli-person.” I was nervous to become a mom because I never grew up babysitting or even really liking kids, but having Eli took all those fears away and I’m shocked at how much I love spending time with him, caring for him and sacrificing for him.
  12. What do you do to unwind/relax when you have some rare time to yourself?
    Read blogs! I love hopping around blog-land checking out what other people are up to and learning.
  13. What is your favorite outing, to date, with your little one?
    I love visiting farmer’s markets with Eli. It’s so fun to walk around and he loves looking at all the booths and people. Plus, I can use him as an excuse to get some food from a vendor to eat while we walk.
  14. I have a running list of Whine & Dine Restaurants that are family friendly in San Diego. What’s your favorite restaurant that you frequent with your baby/kids/family and in what city? Why do you dine out there?
    We actually don’t eat out too much, but when we do, we like to stay close to home. Cafe Ena and George and the Dragon are two places we can walk to from our house in Minneapolis that are kid friendly and have great food. George and the Dragon even gives kiddos blueberries right when they sit down!
  15. Pretend your best friend is pregnant and about to have a baby. What’s the most important piece of advice you would share about “motherhood” (and assuming she is willing to hear it :))?
    My advice is actually about fatherhood. During those first few weeks and months of motherhood, it’s easy to feel like you need to do everything, and no one can do it right but you. You’re learning so much as you care for your baby and it can be easy to start to feel alone in parenthood. My advice is to loosen those reigns a little and start to learn about your baby with your husband. Make it a point to let your husband be very involved. I found that my unintentional controlling attitude caused my husband to not be confident in raising our son, so he while he took direction from me, he didn’t really take initiative. By stepping back and choosing to learn how to care for our son together, we quickly found a difference in our attitudes and understanding of one another, and my husband became a lot more confident as a father! I actually wrote an entire post on this topic it’s so important to me, so if you like, check it out here.

If you know a #FabMom who would be perfect to spotlight in this series (or if you are a Fab Mom yourself) please email: mommyprojectsd@gmail.com – 

Blake at 6 Months Old

Happy 6 month birthday to my sweet baby girl! I can’t believe you are half of a year already! Time is flying but I’m loving every second! Part of me wants you to slow down and stay a little baby forever, but then the other part of me wants to see what you’ll do next! You’re smart, beautiful and such a good baby and everyone who meets you can’t help but love you.

I was going to give you all a 6 month update,  but decided I’ll let Blake tell you about herself in her own words:

  • I love to scream at the top of my lungs, not because I’m mad, but because I love hearing the different pitches of my own voice.
  • I’m a roly-poly and hardly stay on “tummy time” for long before I roll onto my back, and then onto my tummy, and then onto my back, then onto my tummy…
  • My mom calls me a jabber mouth because I love “talking” – there’s so much to say and so little time!
  • I say Da-da-da-da-da-da-da-da so I’m pretty sure my first word is going to be Da-da! I love that guy.
  • If mom laughs, I can’t help but laugh. Sometimes we just laugh back and forth at each other and it’s hilarious!
  • I can scoot but I don’t know how to coordinate my hands and legs at the same time so I usually face plant. Mark my words, I will perfect crawling soon!
  • Give me a rattle and I will shake it so hard that I’ll smack myself in the face or I’ll chuck it across the room. I may look small, but I’m a strong little nugget!
  • I never met a puree I didn’t like, and so far I’ve met bananas, avocados, sweet potatoes and carrots. Fruit and vegetables are delicious!
  • I can sit up on my own for about 30 seconds before I topple over – my core muscles are getting stronger and stronger every day.
  • If my Mom or Dad walks with me in their hands facing outwards, I’ll move my feet like I’m walking too – practice makes perfect.
  • My BFF, Tucker is the funniest thing on this earth. I can laugh at that fluffy dog for hours on end. (You’re my boy, Blue!!!!)
  • If my mom claps her hands, I smile so big and then can’t help but join in on the fun – so I place my hands on the outside of her hands and we clap together. Good times.
  • Bath time = party time. I love kicking my legs as fast as I can and splashing my mom and dad.
  • I want to grab everything I see including and not limited to: food, toys, mom’s cell phone, the mail in the mailbox, and Tucker’s tail as it passes me by.
  • I use to sleep for 10 hours straight, but I’m going through a huge growth spurt right now, so I’m usually up every 2 hours at night – I think I’ll give my mom a break again and start sleeping 10 hours again starting next week **wishful thinking**
  • I’m a social butterfly and I love people, animals and my stuffed animals. If you talk to me in a “baby” voice I will smile and open my mouth really wide in amazement.
  • I’m not a player, I just crush a lot. Shout out to my boyfriends: Tanner, Curren, Zane, Jonah, Tommy and Kingston! My Dad is in big trouble.
  • While I’m giving shout outs, what’s up to all my home girls out there – Annabelle, Lyla, Daisy, Anahlia, Rachel, Savannah – you guys are my besties! 

6 month old

Thanks for reading and until next time – Ciao!

 

 

Monday Mashup…on Wednesday

This week’s Monday Mashup is coming to you on Wednesday because I was on vacation this past Memorial Day weekend so I’m a couple of days behind! Hope you’re all having a wonderful hump day! In no particular order, here’s what I’m loving this week:

  1. Growing Child: My fabulous, fellow mommy friend who blogs over at Little Better Halves alerted me to this cool service for parents. Growing Child is a monthly newsletter that follows your child as he/she grows and helps you understand what he/she is learning and how you can help him/her develop. It also gives great tips about how to deal with each month’s changes and challenges as your babe grows. Can’t wait to check this out!
  2. Little Mizz Kit: I had the pleasure of meeting the Founder of Little Mizz Kit last week and as she was describing her business, I immediately fell in love with the product. Little Mizz Kit is a monthly hands on activity kit for parents and their daughters aimed to provide bonding opportunities and building confidence in young girls. How cool is that? I received the first welcome kit and I can’t wait to complete the  different activities with Blake – focused around arts & crafts, fitness, nutrition, life lessons and how-to instructions. I also love this company because a portion of their proceeds go to March of Dimes.
    little mizz kit
  3. Samsung S5: I did it – I jumped ship from the iPhone (gassssp). But before you judge, check out the new Samsung S5 – its camera is phenomenal, photos and data are stored on your Google account so you don’t run out of memory and, drum roll please, it’s waterproof. So far I’m loving this new phone! #Expectmore
    samsung_galaxy_s5
  4. Family Sleep Event: Don’t miss JenniJune’s workshop as she discusses tactics to help your little one take longer naps and sleep through the night. Guests will also receive amazing swag bags and the opportunity to shop some of the best baby gear on the market. The tour kicks off in San Diego and Del Mar this coming weekend and then heads across the US! Receive $5 off your ticket when you register with code: MOMMYPROJECT.
  5. Just Four Paws, Inc.: San Diego readers, if you’re looking for great pet sitting services including daily walks, overnight sitters or a pet taxi service, Just Four Paws is fantastic! While we were out-of-town this past weekend, we used Just Four Paws, Inc. to watch Tucker and I was extremely impressed with their services. They texted me with a photo of Tuck every day and every night and we came  home to a detailed note from the sitter along with a happy pup! I’m excited to have found a trustworthy, local pet service!

Enjoy the rest of your week!

 

Fab Moms: Olivia Howell of The Lovely Sisters

I’m SO EXCITED to kick off my new series: #FabMoms! Since I’ve become a mom I’ve built an incredible, supportive network of other moms (both online and offline) who inspire me everyday. I’ve learned something new from almost every mom that I’ve met, and I love hearing their unique stories. So to celebrate these amazing women, I’ll highlight a new mom each week where they’ll answer my 15 questions about their definition of “motherhood”. Whether you’re a stay at home mom, work full or part-time, own your own business, are a brand new mom or have five kids, you are all amazing and deserve the spotlight every now and then!

I’m excited to introduce you to my first guest blogger, Olivia Howell. Olivia and I are fellow Rookie Moms and are both in the midst of completing the 52 weekly challenges. I love following her new mom adventures over at her blog, The Lovely Sisters as well as her Twitter and Instagram.

So, without further ado, here’s Olivia’s spotlight:

FabMoms

  1. Who calls you mom and what’s his/her/their age?
    My son is named Weston, and he’s just about 9 months old!
  2. What do you do? (SAHM, business owner, blogger, full-time/part-time employee, etc.)
    I am a middle school Latin and ancient History teacher, as well as a freelance writer and blogger.
  3. What does a typical day look like for you? (And the word typical should be taken with a grain of salt – I know they’re hardly ever typical)
    Well, we have two typical days: work days and weekends. Work days begin at 5am, when my husband gets ready for work first, and then takes Weston so I can get ready. I get his bag packed with clean bottles, get all my things ready for school, and then Weston and I head out, around 7am. I drop him at my mom’s house, where my sister, or mother and step-dad will watch him until 3PM, when I get back. After picking him up, we often see friends, or visit my grandmother. Sometimes we don’t get home until 6PM, and I let him crawl around and play, while I throw laundry in, make dinner, wash bottles, and clean up. I give him dinner, my husband gets home, we (sort of) eat, and then it’s bathtime. I’m not the most consistent parent with bedtime, because, well…I miss him during the day and want to spend time with him. Often, he falls asleep in our arms on the couch, as we wind down, or we all get into bed to chill out and relax together. Those days are quite long and tiring! I rarely have time to even shower! Weekends are, obviously, much more relaxing…we wake up late, eat a long breakfast, play a lot, and most of the time, we run errands as a family or go out to lunch. There’s usually an afternoon nap, and a later, more relaxed dinner.
  4. Any advice on how to “juggle it all”?
    It’s really, really hard being a working mom. I was the first woman in my family, ever (seriously), to go back to work with an infant. Weston was three months old when I went back. To be honest, I don’t really know how I do it. I would say, just go with your gut, and remember that you are indeed doing the best you can! It’s incredibly hard juggling both lives…!
  5. When was the first time you really felt like a mother?
    Actually, it was recently. I took a personal day from school and Weston and I had a totally “normal” day. Breakfast, errands, playing…it was wonderful. It was the first time I truly felt like a mom!
  6. What’s the hardest thing about being a mom?
    I think the hardest thing about being a mom is worrying. I worry that I won’t be there for him, or that something will happen to him. I really and truly try to cherish every single moment with him, because life is insane and you never know what could happen.
  7. What’s the most rewarding thing about being a mom?
    The most rewarding thing about being a mom is watching their little brains grow right before your eyes! It is astounding watching him learn how to sit, and then crawl, and now stand! I’m so proud of him.
  8. What’s the funniest/most shocking thing that has happened to you since you’ve become a mom?
    I think the most shocking thing about becoming a parent, for me, is now thinking about what my own parents went through. I look at every milestone that Weston goes through, and I think, “now I get it!” I get why my parents cared, loved, and protected me so much. It is true what they say: there is no love like the love you have for your child.
  9. I wrote a post about “mental snapshots” that I’ll always remember, even without a photo. I know it’s hard to choose one, but what is your favorite moment, or “mental snapshot”, with your little one(s) so far?
    Honestly, I think my favorite mental snapshot is the moment he was placed on my chest, directly after birth. He was just SO HIM. A sweet smile, hands ready to grab, eyes wide open. He became my best buddy at that moment.
  10. What has been your best baby product purchase so far and why? What age is it appropriate for?
    I have to say that the best purchase we made was our Jumperoo! We started putting him in at three months, and I really feel like it helped him learn to sit, gain muscle strength in his legs…oh, and it was a great, safe, place to put him while I was doing things around the house! We even have two of them!
  11. What’s something new you have learned about yourself after becoming a mother?
    My whole life I’ve wanted to be a writer…and I never did much with my writing. After I became a mother, it made me have the strength to pursue my passion! Who knew that would happen?! Not me. I learned that I do indeed love to learn, and love to write. I learned that having my son makes me feel strong and incredibly capable of conquering the world.
  12. What do you do to unwind/relax when you have some rare time to yourself?
    When I find a few minutes to relax, I like to catch up on my favorite television shows: Shark Tank, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Modern Family, About a Boy, Growing Up Fisher, and of course: Parenthood!
  13. What is your favorite outing, to date, with your little one?
    My favorite thing to do with Weston is simply to go walk around our town. He loves people watching, and I browse stores; we often run into people we know. It’s relaxing, fun, and I am so proud to show off my little one.
  14. I have a running list of Whine & Dine Restaurants that are family friendly in San Diego. What’s your favorite restaurant that you frequent with your baby/kids/family and in what city? Why do you dine out there?
    We’ve gone to Green Cactus (Mexican food) in Huntington, NY, a lot with Weston! They have wide, open seating, perfect for strollers. It’s clean, open, and often not a ton of people there…and if there are people, it’s mostly families. I never feel self conscious having him there.
  15. Pretend your best friend is pregnant and about to have a baby. What’s the most important piece of advice you would share about “motherhood” (and assuming she is willing to hear it :))?
    Just to remember that every day is different. Nothing is set in stone. My grandmother reminds me of this all the time! Babies change daily (even half-daily!), so don’t get worried that the one night of no sleep will last forever…take every day as it comes, and just do what you need to do to get through to tomorrow!

If you know a #FabMom who would be perfect to spotlight in this series (or if you are a Fab Mom yourself) please email: mommyprojectsd@gmail.com – we’d love to feature you!

 

Family Sleep Event with Jenni June

I don’t know about you, but the number one piece of advice I received before having a baby was, “sleep as much as you can now because when she arrives, sleep will be a thing of the past.” I didn’t fully appreciate this advice until I actually became a mom and “sleep” became a favorite pastime. That’ why I was excited to learn that the Family Sleep Event hosted by Jenni June will be coming to San Diego next week!

Jenni June

Jennifer Metter, founder of Jenni June TM LLC, is a Certified Child and Family Sleep Consultant, Certified Lactation Counselor, Host and Mom of 4 teenagers! She is a valuable resource for everyday and celebrity parents all over the country, including Guiliana and Bill Rancic for the Style Network. She has just wrapped her new series, “Baby Care with Jenni June” for the BabyLeague Network. Jenni June teaches baby and toddler sleep classes for ClubMomMe, BabyTalkLA, Nordstrom, Babies R us and popular LA Mom’s groups.

The Family Sleep Event 

The 15-city tour kicks off in San Diego on May 31 and will be hitting cities across the Western United States over the course of the summer.

San Diego Dates:
May 31, 1:00 – 5:00 PM: Doubletree by Hilton, Mission Valley
June 1, 1:00 – 5:00 PM: Hilton Del Mar

Details:
The Family Sleep Event aims to solve the sleep deprivation challenges that families face everyday when raising babies and toddlers, incorporating:
Pediatric Sleep Hygiene: The secret to natural consolidated and restorative sleep at night as well as for longer naps.
Sleep Training Tips to Reduce your Child’s Protests: A breakdown of the most commonly used sleep training methods and how to select the perfect method for your child and unique family situation.
Greening” your Child’s Sleep: How to green-proof your child’s sleep environment to increase quality restorative sleep.

Also Featuring: Giveaways and the opportunity to shop amongst high-end baby gear. The first 100 registered per city will receive a gift bag with items valued at $80, including a Naturepedic Organic Cotton Fitted Crib Sheet, full-sized Babyganics Orange Blossom Night Time Bubble Bath, Undercover Mama Nursing Tank, Lullaby Confessions Tropical Encouragement CD, Jenni June Satin Sleep Mask, and more. Parents will also have the opportunity to shop amongst today’s top baby product brands, including green, sleep and health-related products and services.

Mommy Project Readers Receive $5 Off!

REGISTER HERE and receive $5 off the San Diego or Del Mar event when you Enter Code: MOMMYPROJECT

 

Hope to see you there!

 

My Unexpected Journey to Becoming a Stay at Home Mom

Leaving the corporate world to become a Stay at Home Mom was an easy decision that surprised me more than anyone. If you would have asked me  about my career plans 7 months ago, right before Blake was born, I would tell you that I planned to keep working and building my career. You see, I’ve always had a job ever since I was 14 years old. The day I turned 14 and was of legal age to work in California, I marched myself into Baskin Robbins/Togos and got myself a minimum-wage job scooping ice cream and making sandwiches – I was ecstatic for a paycheck all my own!

I continued working through my high school graduation and then moved to San Diego to attend San Diego State University where I found 2 more jobs that allowed me to put myself through college. At times it was difficult to juggle class, selling advertising space for SDSU’s school newspaper during the day and waitressing at night and on the weekends – but I managed to graduate in four years. The week before I threw my black hat up into the air and celebrated my college graduation, I had already received a job offer from a company in Orange County as an entry-level sales and marketing associate.  It was a great first corporate job and despite me living in San Diego, I was thrilled at the opportunity. I commuted to Orange County bright and early every morning because I felt lucky to have landed a job straight out of college.



As the years passed I continued to bounce around from job to job, pushing myself higher and higher, gaining more real-world experience and building more equity in myself. When I landed my dream job with Hyatt Hotels, I thought, I’ve made it – this is exactly where I’m supposed to be. Flash forward four years later and I was running the marketing department at one of the largest properties on the west coast. Nice suits, a new slick car I bought for myself and an office with a view – I felt important, driven and had big plans to keep scaling that corporate ladder.

The point of all this is that working is in my blood, my DNA, and I’ve worked hard for everything I have.  I don’t know how to not work. So when Blake graced us with her presence last November, I honestly didn’t think my mindset would change all that much. I had an amazing job waiting for me and big plans for my future. And taking into account all of my hard work, since I was 14 years old, how could I turn my back on my self-bought education and all of the years I spent investing in myself?

It’s funny how becoming a parent makes you blind and awakened at the same time. Once Blake was born, something changed in me. I wanted to be there when she laughed for the first time, when she said her first word and when she took her first step – I wanted to raiser her. I could care less about my journey to success – I suddenly was blind to all of those years I spent building my career – they didn’t matter as much to me anymore.   This little family that Mike and I had suddenly created – this was where I was supposed to be. It was so crystal clear and I didn’t doubt it for a second. I was also extremely lucky that I even had the option of becoming a stay-at-home-mom. I know many mothers don’t have that option because of financial reasons or don’t want to put their career on hold, and I totally get it and sympathize with them – but everyone has their own journey.

The Journey is the Destination

I love the quote, “The journey is the destination”. Even though I had bigger plans for my career, I didn’t miss out on the destination – my journey was the destination – and a destination that led me to a beautiful life, loving husband and adorable baby girl.  Now, I still do some marketing consulting on the side and of course I run this blog as a creative outlet, (remember, I don’t know how to not work?) but my full time job is raising Little Miss Blake. And forget fancy suits and an office with a view – this is the most important job I’ll ever have.



stay at home mom

 

Monday Mashup

Happy Monday! Hope everyone’s week is off to a fantastic start! Check out the 5 things I’m loving in this week’s Monday Mashup: 1. 10 Habits of a Successful Mom: This post on Today’s the Best Day blog, really resonated with me because I, too traded in my nice work suits and high heels for flip flops and yoga pants when I left the corporate world and a job I loved to become a full time mom. I love how she refers to the new “mommy job” as a promotion – I totally agree. 2. Moms Night Out at Culture Brewing Co.: Some fellow moms and I experienced Culture Brewing Co. for a fantastic Mom’s Night Out. Check out the article on San Diego Mom’s Night Out for all the details – this San Diego brewery is legit.` Culture Brewing Co. 3. Little Leopard Book: This blog has the best recipes ever! I mean, just follow her Instagram account and you’ll be drooling in no time! Whitney is so cute and she inspires me to start cooking more! 4. StitchFix: I did it – I made the leap and started using StitchFix. It’s such a great idea for us busy moms who don’t really have time to peruse the mall anymore. Plus, I always wanted a personal stylist! And so far, so good – I found one shirt that I loved and kept from my last order and am looking forward to next month’s shipment. The box full of clothse arriving at your doorstep every month is kinda like Christmas for fashionistas – love it! Check it out here. 5. Help San Diego Fire Victims & Firefighters: Last week TEN fires broke out across San Diego county as  intense Santa Ana winds, low humidity and triple digit temperatures only escalated the catstrophe. As I write this, four fires are still burning. At least 25,000 acres have burned in total forcing 125,000 evacuations and dozens of homes destroyed.  To donate goods or money to help evacuees or fire crews involved in this firestorm, here are some suggestions:

San Diego Fires (Photo courtesy of LA Times Photography Twitter: Dramatic image of 72-year-old fighting with garden hose by @RickLoomis via @latpixhttp://lat.ms/RURL8T )

The Dish: Simple Lunch Salad & Healthy Smoothie Recipe

I recently found myself in a terrible rut where I would regularly realize that I hadn’t eaten lunch yet at about 2PM.  I would then scramble to go out and find something quick and easy to eat but by that time I was starving and desperate and often ended up in the In-N-Out drive through ordering a number 2 with light onions and light tomatoes. While that’s all good and dandy every now and then (I do love In-N-Out and it’s tempting convenience), it’s not a pretty habit every day! I now go to Sprouts at the start of every week and stock up on healthy lunch ingredients  Here is a lunch salad and healthy smoothie recipe that are two of my faves:

Lunch Salad

  • Spinach
  • Hard Boiled Egg
  • Cubed Cheddar Cheese
  • Turkey
  • Cucumbers
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper

Cool, crisp and hearty!

Lunch Salad

Healthy Smoothie

In a blender mix:

  • 1 bag of your favorite frozen berries (I usually do the mixed berry bag from Sprouts)
  • 1 banana
  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • 2 cups of Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk
  • 1 tsp. Flax

Refreshing and pretty!

Healthy Smoothie Recipe

Whine & Dine: Pacific Coast Grill

I’ll always remember this Whine & Dine at Pacific Coast Grill because this was my first Mother’s Day celebration! The hubby did good! Pacific Coast Grill literally sits on the sand in Cardiff-by-the-Sea with outdoor patios on the first and second floor. Really, there’s not a bad seat in the house. From large bay windows all you see is sandy beaches, blue ocean water and some built-in entertainment watching the surfers and kite surfers cruise by. This place exudes a true San Diego ambiance.

The Low Down

  • Super friendly service. We eat at Pacific Coast Grill about once a month. The manager, Ryan, recognized us when we walked in and warmly welcomed us back – we were very impressed and the small gesture made us feel like valued patrons. Our waitress was also extremely accommodating.
  • Appetizers that don’t disappoint. We always order the regular guacamole as an appetizer to start because it’s phenomenal. On this day we decided to upgrade and go with the Lobster and Dungeness Crab Guacamole – essentially the same amazing guacamole covered in big chunks of lobster and crab. Heaven!
  • Pink Drinks. No PCG brunch is complete without a Blood Orange Mimosa or a glass of Rosé. I had a glass of each because it was Mother’s Day and I was parched.

Pacific Coast Grill

  • Fresh Fish. Going to PCG and not ordering some sort of fish dish is like going to Napa and not ordering wine -it’s just inexcusable! I ordered the Spicy Tuna Roll with tempura jalapeno – absolutely incredible! – my husband ordered the Surf & Turf roll with seared steak, and my sister ordered the Pan Seared Sea Bass. I had a bite of everything and it was all amazing. I’m still dreaming about this Spicy Tuna roll.

Pacific Coast Grill

  • A Dessert to Remember. When it was time for dessert the Butterscotch Granny Smith Apple Pie with Tahitian vanilla gelato caught my eye and yes, it was just as incredible as it sounds. Imagine chunks of butterscotch baked into the warm pie and then topped with the cold vanilla gelato. Perfection.

Pacific Coast Grill

My Favorite Part

Hands down the Apple Pie! Oh, and after lunch Blake insisted on wearing her new heart sunglasses (they’re adorable) and we all walked out onto the sand right behind Pacific Coast Grill to take this little gem of a picture. Successful Mother’s Day with my beautiful family and great food!

Pacific Coast Grill

 

Pacific Coast Grill
2526 S. Coast Hwy 101
Cardiff, CA
760-479-0721

Monday Mashup

I hope all of you beautiful mamas had a wonderful Mother’s Day with your little ones and your families!

Here’s this week’s Monday Mashup of things I’m loving:

1. Kate Spade On Purpose: Kate Spade is teaching a group of 150 women in Masoro, Rwanda to become a profitable supplier for all Kate Spade & Company brands. Their goal is to make these women’s business sustainable in hopes it will transform their entire community of 20,000 people. Just one more reason to love Kate Spade!

2. Laughing Glass Cocktails: Laughing Glass Cocktails is a ready-made margarita made by moms for moms (hello, you have my attention.)  As the brain child of 3 moms, each bottle is hand-crafted with the ladies’ own recipe of super-premium artisan tequila straight from Mexico, all-natural ingredients and a touch of organic agave nectar – sounds tasty! Laughing Glass has taken the guesswork out of making a great cocktail – simply add ice and a salted rim and voila – the perfect margarita and only 100 calories per glass. I’ll cheers to that! Laughing Glass is available throughout California and Colorado including Whole Foods, Cost Plus, World Markets and other specialty grocery and independent liquor stores

Laughing Glass

 

3. Evelyn Hensen Art: I came across this lovely artist on Instagram. She creates these awesome prints of different cities around the world and is creating more every day. She also takes requests. How cute would this be for a wedding present or to buy after a trip that you’ll always want to remember? I just love these!

Evelyn HensonEvelyn Henson

4. Omni Hotels’ #SelfiewithMom Instagram SweepstakesOmni Hotels is offering an Instagram sweepstake for a chance to win a (1) night stay at any Omni worldwide and a $250 gift card to spend at any property. All you have to do is post a photo of you and your mom, or you and your daughter/son and use hashtag #SelfiewithMom and tag @OmniHotels. This sweepstake is open until May 13. Click here to see all of the details. And while you’re on Instagram, follow me! :)

Mother Daughter

5. Denny’s & the San Diego Zoo & Safari ParkNow through Monday, June 30, all Denny’s in San Diego and select Denny’s  in Los Angeles and Orange County are giving away coupons for 50%  child’s admission to the zoo or Safari Park with the purchase of one full-price adult admission. You can also enter to win a family 4 pack of tickets to the zoo or Safari Park. The first drawing will be on Sunday, June 1; the second drawing will be on Tuesday, July 1. Two winners per restaurant per drawing will be selected!

Denny's San Diego Zoo

Have a wonderful week!

 

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