MBOJ Workshops at LuxTots, Pasadena, CA


I know it’s been a little quiet around here this week! I’m catching up on some work that I have had sitting around, and I’m also just coming down off this huge high that was my first Beginners Calligraphy Workshop, held at the gorgeous LuxTots, a kids lifestyle boutique in Pasadena, CA.

I’m so lucky that I was just able to get images from Sadaf Murad Photography today….and I just couldn’t wait to share them with you. Here are some outtakes from that day…..

MBOJLUXTOTS4MBOJLUXTOTS1MBOJLUXTOTS11MBOJLUXTOTS9The stunning florals were provided by the talented and kind Charmain of Emblem Flowers, whose work I have admired from afar for a while. I’m so glad I was able to work with her on this project!MBOJLUXTOTS8MBOJLUXTOTS5

 

Pastries and refreshments were provided by Copa Vida; if you guys are ever in the Pasadena area, you need to stop by – my favorite thing here are the baked eggs. I mean, I could eat them all day, everyday. MBOJLUXTOTS10MBOJLUXTOTS6I am so lucky to have had the most charming group of women attend my class. They were sweet and interesting and laughed at my attempts at jokes (thanks, guys) … I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people to teach.MBOJLUXTOTS2MBOJLUXTOTS13And some of them were just naturals at calligraphy. MBOJLUXTOTS3MBOJLUXTOTS7

I’m not going to lie – this whole thing was awesome but so surreal to me. Teaching has been something that I never thought I’d be doing, but it brings me such joy to watch others find the fun in calligraphy, much like I did. There is this moment in your calligraphy practice when you just hit that curve of a letter just right…and your thick and thin lines are just as you want them to be, and for the first time. And you’re like – yeah ok, that was totally satisfying. From that moment on….you’re hooked. I know I was. And I saw that happen for some of my students that day. And that was the most rewarding thing, ever. MBOJLUXTOTS12

Thanks to everyone who came, and to everyone who contributed to make this event such a success! If you’re interested in being on the waitlist for upcoming workshops, please email me at ohhello (at) mybabyolivejuice (dot) com. My upcoming workshops are listed here. As of right now, I only have one planned but it’s already sold out…but I hope to have more before the year is out! I’ll keep you posted!
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Pretty Smart Storage


SMART-AND-PRETTY-STORAGE

In light of us moving back into our newly remodeled home come November (fingers crossed, guys, really), I’ve started to consider new ways to store Olive’s toys in an attractive, design forward manner. I’m not the best at organization (sorry, husband) and kids toys have SO MANY little parts and bits and bobs. To be honest, I really just need place to shove them all into so they are out of sight.

Wait, no, I mean I’m going to meticulously place them in their proper place, and make sure they are neat and tidy. (ahem).

Ok, whichever route you decide to go, here are a few options for you. I’m really liking basket three in particular (so small parts don’t fall through), and I love that number five is both affordable and compartmentalized, so you can either use it as open shelving, or stick little fabric bins in there for more hidden storage.

What are your favorite storage options? I’m all ears, I’ll consider everything…..as long as they are pretty.

Shop them here: 01 | 02 | 03 | 04 | 05

 

 

 

 

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Ask The Professional: How To Transition from Crib to Bed


TODDLER-BED

Last week, our daughter, who sleeps through the night, woke us up, screaming and crying. When I looked over at the baby monitor, I realized that all the lights in her room were on, and I couldn’t see her in her crib! She was gone! I was bleary eyed, out of my mind and convinced that she had been kidnapped.

Obviously, i freaked out, yelled a bunch of things out at my husband and we ran to her room….only to find her standing there, trying to get out of her room. She had gymnastic-finagled out of her tall crib (using her sofa as leverage) and plop landed in the middle of her room, in the middle of the night.

Okay, she’s tried to climb out of her crib for a while now, but I’ve always been able to distract her from trying, or tell her how super dangerous it is mommy-will-be-so-upset stuff……so I have been avoiding this transition into a toddler bed for while. But almost all of her friends have made the switch to the toddler bed, and truth be told, she is maxing out the space in her crib. Between her long legs and the 985412 stuffed animals she has in there (all ‘essential’ for a good nights sleep, she says) she’s about ready for a toddler bed.

I’m just not ready. As every mom facing this crossroads will tell you, the reason is purely selfish – I DO NOT WANT HER TO STOP SLEEPING THROUGH THE NIGHT AND WAKE ME UP FROM MY OWN SWEET SWEET SLUMBER. So after this midnight gymnastics incident, I reach out to my friend Natalie Willes, Baby Sleep Trainer for advice. Now, Natalie has successfully helped me sleep train Olive as an infant as well as given me rock solid advice for how to get your toddler over international jetlag… so I knew she could help me with this too.

Here are a couple of questions I asked Natalie, and I thought I’d share them with you.

Ask-The-Professional---NatalieWilles

1. Is there ever a “right time” to move my child into a toddler bed from a crib? If there are, what are the signs?

I would say, the older the better and as close to 3 as humanly possible. In fact, I kept my kids in cribs until close to 4 years old! They were both fully potty trained at 20 months and 2.5 years respectively, but stayed in pull ups overnight with zero impact on their potty training during the day. 

The only time you have to move them to a toddler bed is if your child is child is climbing out of the crib and you can’t find a way to keep them in.  If you do find your kiddo trying to climb out, try to either sternly startle them by telling them, “NO! We do NOT climb out of the crib!” Granted, most kids could care less and will keep trying to climb out, so if that’s your toddler you’ll want to lower the crib to the lowest level, remove all pillows and bumpers (that they step on to get out), and place them in a sleep sack. Yes, they do make sleep sacks for three year olds! They may absolutely loathe the sleep sack, but dealing with their frustration over the sleep sack is preferable to them climbing  out of the crib. Anything is preferable to them climbing out of the crib. Finally, if you have the type of crib where the back is taller than the front (think sleigh-style crib), rotate the crib so that tall side is facing the room and the lower side is facing the wall. Also make sure no dressers are next to the smaller sides of the crib – kids will use the dresser to help themselves climb out. 

The RIGHT time to move your child to a toddler bed is when you think they’re obedient enough to stay in the room even if they wake up early in the morning. If they can read a toddler clock or learn to wait to leave the room until their musical alarm goes off, then they can go into a toddler bed.  Any earlier than that and you run the risk of disaster. 

If you do find yourself in the situation where you simply must transition your child to a toddler bed, then on the same day you put them in a bed also put a safety-style door knob cover on the inside of the bedroom door. You simply have to turn their entire room into a crib. Get on your hands and knees and make certain their room is 100% baby proofed, strap all dressers and bookcases to the wall (children climb those and can have serious accidents if the furnitures falls onto them).  Your child may be able to roam freely in their room, but they should not believe that they are allowed to leave at will. It shouldn’t feel that restricting to them since they have never had the freedom to leave their bedroom at will during sleep times anyway. 

2. Are there different kinds of toddler beds? What works best?

This is purely personal preference. It seems as if most cribs today transition easily into a toddler bed by simply taking of one long side of the crib. Many of those same cribs later turn into twin or even full sized beds! Using a side rail and checking in with you pediatrician should suffice when deciding what type of bed is most appropriate for your toddler.  Keep in mind, however, than their legs are small and you may want to choose a bed that keeps them closer to the ground. 

3. Ok, lets be real – how is this change going to affect her sleep? What typically happens?

This all comes down to 1. How early you make the change, and 2. How consistent you as a parent are.  Regardless of age, once your child is in a bed they must also be expected to remain in their bedroom until a pre-designated time in the morning. If you can be consistent through the protests that may occur for the first 1-2 weeks then this change should go smoothly. If, however, you allow your child (of any age) to leave their room at will,  I can almost guarantee that you will have problems. Interestingly, many toddlers transition in just fine…at first. Their parents wisely pick out fun bedding with their child’s input and make them excited about the change. For some kiddos it almost seems as if it doesn’t occur to them that they can leave their room.  And then the inevitable happens and they begin to make regular and repeated appearances throughout the night and the morning. 

As long as you can manage to teach your child that they must wait to start their day and remain in their room all night, this shouldn’t be an issue. 

If your child needs to leave the room to use the bathroom, again, this should be a liberty given only to kids who are obedient and responsible enough to leave the room to use the restroom, then return back to their rooms. If they can’t handle that expectation, they should be in pull ups or diapers. 

Finally, it is as imperative now more than ever that you use a video monitor to watch what your children are doing and to make sure they are safe in their rooms all night. 

4. Are there any ways to minimize the loss of sleep when it comes to this change?

Remain consistent with the expectation that they remain in their rooms and sleep all night and give the whole process about 1-2 weeks. 

I’ve heard that some kids just won’t sleep on the bed, instead she sleeps on the floor next to the bed. What do I do?

If she’s happy sleeping on the floor, leave her be!! You can even start encouraging it by making a little bed on the floor with a pillow and blankets. Where she sleeps is less important than that she simply sleep. 

Thanks Natalie! Okay, now just to sack up and make this change………….. wish me luck, guys

CHANEL

 

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Favorite Pins and Links This Week


GREEN-DREAM

I’ve been working closely with the amazing Charmain of Emblem Flowers lately to come up with some florals for my upcoming workshop at Luxtots; and I’ve been swooning over these greens I’ve been finding on Pinterest.

My aesthetic has always been on the more colorful side (as you can see from the blog here), but I really tend to veer on the fresher and cleaner side when it comes to florals, I’m not sure why. I’m particularly loving succulents and those beautiful silver dollar eucalyptus leaves…I think they are gorgeous.

Here are a few of my favorite links this week:

I’m kind of on the fence about this concept – this couple says that living in separate spaces has saved their marriage. I can totally see how this would work, though…if you had the budget, would you give this a go?

This amazing designer has created a clothing collection that you can print in your own home, using only a 3D printer. I mean, how crazy is that?

Totally want to see this movie – doesn’t it just look heart wrenching?

Have a great weekend!

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Pretty Techy


Love-Is-A-Big-Deal-Teaser

Because it really is.

Love is a big deal. It’s a HUGE deal. So often we take it for granted unless it’s new and shiny, but lets not take for granted the love that is around us constantly, even if it gets a little too familiar.

On that note, here is a free wallpaper download of Love Is A Big Deal for you, right over here. I hope you love it!

Happy Monday, everyone!

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Currently Totally Obsessed With…


Renee-Rouleau
Okay, so for the past couple of months, my skin has been the absolute worst. 

And I know why – it’s been a stressful time here at home, with calligraphy workshops, renovations, moving, coupled with my the-sky-is-falling mentality….well, lets just say it’s all showing on my skin. Specifically, it’s been protesting in the form of adult cystic acne.

It’s as pretty as it sounds, but you know, I’m just trying to be real.

I’ve battled with cystic acne on and off for most of my life; but hadn’t really found anything that I could buy over-the-counter to make it better; usually it just dries up the surface, and the bump below still hangs around for like, a month. But after finding this little gem (after reading this article on Marie Claire) I had to give it a try.

And you know what, it kind of works. It doesn’t get rid of it immediately, but it really makes a difference in the healing time. The cystic acne is smaller and less painful in just a few days (where this usually takes more than a week), and the under-the-skin bumps that usually remain at the end are mostly gone.

For those of you who are lucky enough to NOT have adult acne……this might not be a big deal, but for the ladies who know what I’m talking about….this product. Get it, now.

 

 

 
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Ask The Professional: The Architect


ASK-THE-PROFESSIONAL-ARCHITECT

 

Most of you know that we’re remodeling our home right now; but what most of you don’t know is that decision didn’t come lightly. Patrick and I had spent the better part of a year looking around at new properties, trying to move into a larger and newer home. Mostly, those searches just left us pretty sad: the houses that we wanted were way out of our budget, or in a neighborhood that we felt didn’t fit out lifestyle.

One day, Patrick just casually brought up the idea of ditching the search all together, and just renovating our current home. Now, this house was built in the 1940s, in a time where building codes were less regulated, and with age and multiple earthquakes later, it wasn’t without it’s problems – so I was hesitant. And there was so much I wanted to change…would it be worth it?

I enlisted the help of my friend, Melissa (architect and designer) to talk about what we were getting into. Making a decision to remodel is a huge one, especially if you have children. Here are a couple of the questions I asked, when deciding if we should stay and renovate, or move…..I hope this helps you too, if you’re currently facing the same options.

Ask-The-Professional---Melissa-Hon-Tsai

How do I decide if I want to remodel my home, or just purchase another home?

Your home is not only one of the largest investments you’ll make, but its also where you live and grow your family. Other than financial considerations, the major factors to think about are what are some things you can’t change about your current home:

Neighborhood (character, walkability, etc)
Access (to work, markets, highways, etc)
School District
Yard size and layout

If you love the location and believe you can’t find anything better, remodeling may be the answer. However, moving would be a better option if there is another place you believe would be a better fit for your family.

I want to make sure that our remodel looks beautiful and yet, make it totally kid friendly. Is this even possible? What are some things to keep in mind?

Having kids myself, what I found most important is providing open and uncluttered space for them to play. If the space allows, consider providing lots of storage. Not everything has to be padded to be kid-friendly, but no sharp corners on tables, countertops, etc. That doesn’t mean rounded or oval, simply a slight chamfer. When picking out upholstery and drapery, you want to consider the durable and low maintenance fabrics, something that doesn’t show dirt at the surface.

Just remember that your kids won’t be “kids” forever. So, don’t make major design decisions that can’t easily be changed out solely for that reason!

At what point do I hire a designer, versus trying to do it myself?

For most small projects, like removing a wall or changing out the floors, the design and construction can be managed between you and contractor. When its a larger project, such as an addition or entire house renovation, hiring an architect or design professional will help bring your vision for the space together, while be assured the space will suit your family’s needs and be aesthetically pleasing.

What are some hidden costs of remodeling that we probably are not thinking about?

With renovations, there will always be hidden costs. You never know what you’ll find when you open up those walls (structural damage, mold, termites, etc…). It’s always smart to budget for some contingency.

 

I hope some of these questions and answers were able to help get you thinking about your options out there!

 

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Introducing MBOJ Workshops for Modern Calligraphy


Modern-CalligraphyI’m so excited to share that I am starting to teach beginners Modern Calligraphy classes this summer, and the very first class is less than a month away – August 23rd at 3pm in Pasadena, CA!

These small, intimate 3 hour classes are perfect for you if you’ve never used the pointed pen before – we’re going to go over the fundamentals of the pen and nib,  and we’ll cover everything from basic strokes to full alphabets, and talk about developing your personal calligraphy style. I’ve created a booklet of practice drills, the alphabet and resources that you’ll need to start this journey confidently:

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And these tools will be yours to use in class, and take home.
MBOJWorkshop-KitINSTAGRAM

LuxTots in Pasadena will be hosting the first of the class series, and mamas if you love beautiful things for your little ones, this is the store for you. They are totally a lifestyle shop for little dreamers! You can check them out on Instagram or on their Facebook page! We’ll have some refreshments and light bites from Copa Vida during class, too!

Lux+Tots+Pasadena-3

So…wow. Yeah! If you’re in the LA area, and you want to introduce yourself to the world of calligraphy, this is the right class for you! More info on the class is below, and if you’re interested in signing up, the link to do so is right here.  This will be a small class, so please sign up soon!

Mockup3-Modern-Calligraphy

If you have any questions at all, please feel free to drop me an email at ohhello (at) mybabyolivejuice (dot) com! I’ll be happy to answer them!

I can’t wait to meet you!

 

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Photo Credit for LuxTots Store by Noodoso

Storq Intimates Launch at Olive & June


Last week I had the (very exciting) honor of being invited to a little get-together at the beautiful Olive & June, to celebrate the launch of Storq’s new intimates collection.

OliveYouStorq4

If you haven’t heard about Storq, mamas, you probably should – they are in it to make maternity wear comfortable, effortless and chic as hell. They don’t have very many pieces in their lineup – but that’s the whole point. It’s for the mom who isn’t into the ruffles in bows, and for the mom who isn’t going to buy a whole new wardrobe to accommodate her changing belly. Just the chic basics. Those are enough.

Storq

 

Their intimates line was a natural place to branch into, and after seeing it in person last week I can say that I’m probably going to get some anyway. I’m not pregnant, but who am I to resist comfy underthings that are smooth. like. butter? And uh, doesn’t this mama-to-be just look sexy? I mean – there really isn’t another word for it.

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By the way, this event was perfect – Olive & June gave out the best mini manicures for everyone there:OliveYouStorq5

Some beautiful treats from Valley Brink Road (dude, those colors…)OliveYouStorq3

And some fantastic drinks by Pharmacie LA.OliveYouStorq2

Here is the morning after obligatory-nail-shot of my mini mani. I loved it.

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Hope you’re having a great Monday so far!

Photo Credit: All Event Photos by me, Storq garment photos from the Storq website.

 

 

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It’s A Staycation!


Mama-Bebe-Staycation

A few weeks ago, we had to move out of our temporary condo for a few days because the tub was being reglazed.

I am not going to lie, I was pretty pissed. We had just spent a whole week moving into the condo from our home, just to have to vacate again a week later. Not only that, but Patrick was going to be out of town for work during that time too. So yeah, I was more than a little annoyed.

But when I was done fuming, I realized that it was a great opportunity for Olive and I to have a little mama-daughter staycation. We had been so stressed out for so long with this remodel (and to be honest, I was also feeling a little guilty for packing and moving so much and not hanging out enough with her) that I decided that to make the best of it – we were going to check into a local hotel and spend all day at the pool. We were going to have breakfast in bed. We were going to snuggle and fall asleep together on the same bed. We were going to have a blast.

And ohmygod, we really did. It was kind of like going away with your best girlfriend, but better. And because Olive goes to bed early (and we obviously were sharing a room), it forced me to sleep early too. That night, I slept for 10 solid hours. It was the best feeling in the world.

Here are a couple of things we brought on our Staycation – seriously, that swim float is probably the best invention there ever was. It has an additional float panel that supports the chest, so they get a lot more buoyancy in the water. Olive wouldn’t take it off, and it gave her such confidence to be able to swim around independently. If you’re interested, a video of that, here. (Note: she’s really never gotten swim lessons, I really slacked on that. But seriously, look how awesome she is with that float!)

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