MUSEUM OF ICE CREAM REVIEW

It is every kid’s’ dream – and even adults dreams as well – to go to a place that is dedicated to only ice cream. So when I heard that the Museum of Ice Cream was going to make a temporary residence in Downtown LA this year, I jumped at the opportunity to attend.  After waiting almost three months for the day to arrive, my family and I paid a visit this past weekend and let me tell you: the museum did not disappoint.  I couldn’t help but smile every time I saw the excitement in Julianna’s eyes as we went from room to room.

The Museum of Ice Cream is very hyped and  and for good reason: it did not disappoint.  The museum first opened in New York City last summer and after having much success, the creators decided to bring the museum to the west coast.   This museum isn’t like a traditional one: yes, you will learn trivia on ice cream, but the focus is not about facts.  Instead, the focus is on having a good time, exploring the 10 super-colorful galleries, and sampling of the ice cream along the way.  From bananas suspended from the ceiling to humongous gummy bears to the pool filled with sprinkles,  every single room feels like a photographers’ dream.  Along the samples we tried along the way: corn-infused ice cream with a hardened salted caramel topping, mochi ice cream, and an out-of-this-world ice cream cookie dough.

Julianna’s favorite room was the banana room. She didn’t want to leave, and I apologize to the MoIC for the screams!  My personal favorite was, of course, the sprinkle pool: what can be better than dipping yourself into sprinkles, right? (Added feature: the sprinkles will follow you home too!)  I also loved the waiting area that had nothing to do with ice cream: there were hula hoops, a huge Jenga, an ice-cream themed Connect-Four, and a corn hole game.  All of this was going on while you 90s music in the background….(anything with the Backstreet Boys has my approval)!  I guess you can say I had a little bit of too much fun that I wanted the experience to last longer. I hope to visit MoIC in a different city where a new adventure awaits!

Unfortunately, all of the tickets are sold-out for the remainder of the summer, but if you have tickets or can tag along with a friend, I guarantee you will not be disappointed.

P.S- TAKE AS MANY PICTURES AS POSSIBLE!!!!

Sunday Brunch

I love brunches! There is something about celebrating outdoors, beautiful weather, mimosas, and being around pretty amazing people that makes my heart happy. Carl and I decided to have a small get-together and invite friends over for brunch. Sometimes we get caught up in our every day lives that we miss being around family, friends, and the people that always make us happy. So of course, I had to decorate just a tiny bit for the occasion! lol We had a great time, and I hope to do it again soon. I was super busy so I didn’t get a lot of pics, but here are a few of the decorations.

If you haven’t been…. They recently opened a Five Below store by my house and I am obsessed!! They have the cutest summer items right now! If you haven’t gone, you must pay them a visit. Everything is literally between $1-$5. When I thought about going in there, I thought I was going to be disappointed, but it is one of my favorite stores right now haha! Most of decorations below are from Five Below and Ikea.

Have a good week!

Chic Diaper Bag

I have finally found the diaper bag that meets all of my needs!!  Grace, from Ann Medeline,  is the one behind these beautiful bags . You can tell that Grace has put a lot of thought and love into her product. It is rewarding and fulfilling to see this mommy entrepreneur hustle to make these bags.  This backpack has the look and the function that I think every mama out there looks for. It has plenty of space and 16+ pockets. You can wear it in two different ways- on your back  or you can sling it on your side. It is insulated so snacks/drinks stay nice and cool, and the best part?!? It’s water proof! Literally, the water just slides off. I present to you: The Chic Bag.

I always like to over pack for trips and this bag has all the space I need. I know Julianna is a bit older and a whole lot is not needed, but I still like to be prepared. I like to carry her bottles, extra pair of clothing, wipes, diapers, toys, snacks, etc.  This bag is so functional that I don’t only plan on using this backpack as a diaper bag – I am also going to use it when I travel for work! My favorite part is the front pocket. I tend to carry my lip balm stick, lip gloss, wallet, and other small belongings.  The front pocket has so much storage  that I am able to keep everything organized without having to look through a pile of things. The bag is extremely durable – I sometimes carry it holding only the top handle. Another awesome feature about this bag is that the other day I went to the market and the bag has straps that attach to the cart, which is extremely convenient: I am not juggling my toddler and bag at the same time.  Let me know what you mamas think!

Here are some fun pics that we took Mother’s Day weekend. This bag came just in time to brighten up my day! 🙂

We also got a matching bag for Julianna. Aren’t these the cutest?! These mini versions have tons of space as well. I have started putting some toys in here for her. Insulated Mini Bag

Julianna’s bag has tons of space for organization as well. It is waterproof and it even has a harness option that maybe I will use haha) The straps are well padded so it won’t rash on skin and it is also insulated on the inside.

XO, Jan

L.A. MAMACITAS- SIP, STYLE, and SOCIALIZE

If you are reading this, thank you! Thank you for visiting my page and for your continuous support. You are the best!

I have said this before, but I had never wanted to connect with other women like I did when I became a mother. I wanted to find someone to relate to. Motherhood is a beautiful thing…it is the best job a woman can be given. Just as much as it is beautiful, however, it can be a very stressful and an overwhelming time as well. I feel it is vital to have other moms to talk and relate to – other women that you know can have things in common with. I was desperate for this. I still remember how I found Ruby from https://la-mamacita.com: I have my husband to thank for this. He was the one that looked for a mommy group for me through the website MeetUp.  I went to my first gathering with them at the MOCA museum in Downtown Los Angeles. I had the best time! After that, I hosted a brunch with Ruby where I met some other amazing moms. Ruby and I really connected and we both enjoy entertaining people. I love hosting gatherings so I knew that I had to team up with her.  Ruby and I decided to join forces and L.A. MAMACITAS was born.

Even though motherhood is a full-time job, I believe that us moms should really take a break to refresh ourselves – you just have to! Whether it is going to get a manicure, pedicure, going for a run, or a day out with your girlfriends – you must do something for YOU! Therefore, Ruby and I came up with an intimate event where us moms could “pamper” ourselves, where there wouldn’t be so many people…..where mothers could take a bit of time off from being a mother and meet other like-minded moms as well. So that is exactly what we did!

It has been a lot of hard work, but we couldn’t be more excited and grateful. Our first big event was a complete success. I was overwhelmed with emotions that day. To SEE YOU THERE was the best kind of feeling. I have YOU to thank and all of the amazing sponsors that joined us that day – whether physically or through their product and services that they donated. Thank you to our husbands: you guys were amazing!! Thank you for being such supportive men that stood beside us every step of the way. I have to especially thank my partner, Ruby: thank you chica – for trusting in me and for feeding me your knowledge. We did it! You can head on over to her blog for more pictures and content! LA Mamacita Blog

“I always believed that one woman’s success can only help another woman’s sucess”-Gloria Vaderbilt

Thank you again and I hope you continue joining us for the ride. We can’t wait for the events ahead and for next years’ Sip, Style, & Socialize!!

 

These were the cutest swag bags that were handed out to each attendee.

Fireplace Candles make unique scents for their candles, such as “Comfort Food”,  “Motor Oil”, and “Lavender”.  http://www.shopfireplacecandles.com

You can indulge in Pipsnacks guilt-free! They are yummy and healthy. https://www.pipsnacks.com/pages/about-usDean from That’s What She Said Quote Shop is one the sweetest mamas I have met. She does amazing digital art. https://www.etsy.com/shop/TWSSQuoteShop?ref=l2-shopheader-name

Some other amazing goodies inside the swag bags included beauty products, jewelry, and everyone left with their own copy of LA Fashion Magazine http://thelafashion.com

We got to raffle off some awesome prizes to a couple of lucky mamas.

Thank you to Andrea from Mama Love Collective for sponsoring one of her beautiful pink boxes. https://www.mamalovecollective.com

Gift card from http://www.thefashionseekers.com

Mommy and Me photo shoot from https://www.facebook.com/themedinacreative/

Special gift box put together by Ruby and I filled with jewelry and other goodies

Maria, from The Fashion Seekers, had a pop up shop! We were so thrilled to have her! Not only is she the nicest and kindest mama, she also carries a beautiful assortment of clothes. http://www.thefashionseekers.comNONE OF THIS would’ve been possible without these beautiful souls right here in this picture! THANK YOU!! I love women that encourage and fill the room with positivity. you girls are awesome!! our hearts will forever be grateful.

Hair: Carolina Sanchez

Makeup: Lidia from https://www.instagram.com/mzlids.mua/ and Ashley from https://www.instagram.com/mua_rosemarie/

Massage Therapist: Melissa Becerra contact info: m15.becerra@gmail.com

Clothing boutique pop shop: Maria from http://www.thefashionseekers.co 

Backdrop: True Paper Love https://www.facebook.com/truepaperluv/

Some of the most down to earth mamas we know!

Below are some video highlights 🙂

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XO,

Jan

FAMILY TRIP: SEATTLE/VANCOUVER

If you are reading this, Thank you! Thank you for visiting my blog and for the continuous support.

I finally took Seattle off my bucket list and this trip went amazing! Even more amazing was the fact that I was able to experience it all with my family.  We even managed to add Vancouver to out small getaway! These two cities took my breath away and I am in awe at all the beauty that is out there and all that still awaits us. I hope you enjoy all of my pictures from our adventure! 🙂

Started off our day by visiting Pike Place. I loved it! Had such a great time walking and exploring Seattle.

Seattle is home to the first ever Starbucks, so I, of course, HAD to make a trip there!


Went to visit the cutest coffee shop! https://www.moorecoffeeshop.com/

It was so fun to go see the Space Needle! Julianna loved the park that we found there!

We went to go visit the “Chuhuly Garden and Glass” which is right next to the Space Needle.

Here are all the highlights from Vancouver. We went to go visit Stanley Park first. It is so clean here…I wish I could put the city’s air in a jar and bring it with me. This park is gorgeous. There is so much to walk through and sight seeing!

The suspension bridge, I think will remain on the top of my list for a while. IT WAS AMAZING! to walk through there with Carl and Julianna is a memory that will last me a lifetime.


We found a cute restaurant right next to the beach in Vancouver – While Carl waited for our table, Julianna and I went on a little walk on the beach.

 

BRAND REP: CUTE & SASSY BOWTIQUE

Julianna is one lucky girl! She is a brand representative for a wonderful shop that I have admired for some time now: Cute & Sassy Bowtique. They specialize in Disney-themed apparel, ears, and other fashion items. I decided to do a fun Q&A with the founders of this shop, Jessica and Anna, on how they started their shop and their goals for the future. I know that it is not easy being an entrepreneur, so I truly admire people that hustle and follow their passions. You can shop their product directly through their IG page https://www.instagram.com/cutensassy_bowtique/  Not only do they have the cutest selection of Minnie-shaped ears and clothing, but they also have amazing customer service. I hope people continue to support small businesses; I definitely want you to show this shop some love and follow along on their journey as they continue growing.

JS: When did you create your shop and what was the inspiration behind it?
CSB: Our shop started with something small, just two little tables in a booth at the Santa Fe Springs Swap Meet…it t was about 6 to 7 years ago. At that time, our bows were a totally different style to what they are now. Our name comes from us trying to describe little girls. They are all cute & they just have a little sass to them. They all steal our hearts with their cuteness. There is definitely a lot more of our shop to come in the coming years.
JS: What are your goals for your shop?
CSB: One of our goals for our shop is to continue growing, not only in the numbers of followers but also actual customers who continually order from us; to continue building relationships with our customers. Another thing we are working on is bringing in new styles of bows & headbands.  We just recently added clothing to our shop. That’s definitely something we will continue working on. We would love to collaborate with other shops or see our items in a department store…maybe even open a store of our own.
JS: Where do you do most of your advertising for your products?
CSB:  All our advertising is definitely through Instagram.  Our customers are amazing as well: they are always sharing our shop with friends, family…. even strangers sometimes! We are definitely thankful for that!
JS: Do you have another job besides your shop, and, if so, what do you do?
CSB: Running this shop is a full-time job. My sister and I made this our main focus since day one.
JS: What do you think makes you unique compared to your competitors?
CSB: One of the things that make our shop unique is that it’s very versatile. We get random requests every week and all though we may not get it done the first time we continue to try and get the product right the second time. I believe our shop is one of the few that doesn’t focus on one specific style but provide several options for our customers. We do our best to focus on what’s important to us, which is providing the best product for our shop at the Santa Fe Springs Swap Meet and for orders. Although a website would be amazing, we wouldn’t want to rush products out.
JS: How many hours a week do you put towards your business?
CSB: Running a business is not a 9-5 job or a Monday-Friday.  It’s a 24/7 job…it’s continually posting new products, answering direct messages, working on orders & restocking for the weekends.
Below are some pictures of her product and of Julianna modeling it!
 

 

Conquering a Disney Trip SOLO with your Child

We love going to Disneyland, and we go a lot! Haha… It is my favorite thing to do with Julianna. I love seeing her run around, seeing her smile, seeing her scream in excitement…it is the best feeling seeing her have the best time. It is the kind of feeling that almost makes you want to cry of the sight of your child having such an amazing time, that you even have butterflies in your stomach. That is what Disneyland does to me (I know, deep, right? lol) With all that being said, a trip to Disneyland is not easy. I have done several trips with Julianna all by myself, and it is a struggle from juggling a stroller, a diaper bag, going on the trams, and oh, right?! your kid…

During my first solo trip, I felt like I was about ready for a nap as soon as I walked inside the park. I didn’t anticipate how much work it would be being alone with a toddler. I know there are a lot of moms that are not willing to go to Disneyland by themselves, but fear not! I have learned a couple of things and this is the best list I can come up with. I hope this helps you for your next solo trip!

  1. The kind of stroller you have does matter.  When you are with someone else, it is so easy to gather all your things and go. Your SO (significant other) or a friend can handle diaper bags and fold the stroller while you hold your toddler.  When you are by yourself, it is a completely different scenario. Some strollers can be heavy…I would completely recommend you get a light stroller that is extremely easy to fold so you are able to go in the tram faster. If your stroller is heavier and harder to maneuver around, I recommend you get in the line where you don’t have to fold your stroller. I am not a fan of that line. I went on there for the first time last week because, for the life of me, I couldn’t remember how to fold my stupid stroller (I know, sad moment). I had to wait for four trams to finally be able to get on!! Four. I was annoyed and tired.
  2. Don’t take your stroller everywhere you go.  Most of my time on these trips, you won’t even see my stroller. I always leave it parked because I know Julianna is not going to want to be on it, and why fight a toddler, right? As soon as I get there, I park the stroller at a stroller-friendly attraction and go running away with my girl. I feel like nothing ever bad happens at Disneyland, therefore, no one will ever steal what is in there, lol. I do take my diaper bag with me everywhere though. I only go get the stroller when I know Julianna wants to take her nap.
  3. Take toys and stickers.  Julianna is obsessed with Disney princess figurines and she plays with them all the time. I only take about 3 or 4 of them with me. I take them out when we are waiting for a show or when I sit down to eat; it keeps her distracted for a bit. Stickers are also a great distraction while you want some downtime or want to grab a bite.
  4. Take plenty of snacks.  Kids sometimes want to eat all the time. I take as many snacks as I can such as grapes (her favorite), veggie chips, goldfish, cheerios, etc. Make the snacks easy and avoid any potential mess or stickiness. I also take the most convenient sippy cups and bottles. Unfortunately, she still drinks off a bottle (don’t judge me) So I make sure to take a sippy cup and about two bottles. one for water, one for juice or milk.
  5. Make dining reservations, and I just don’t mean for table-service restaurants.  If you want to eat good at a restaurant, make sure you make reservations. During one of my recent trips, I was starving and was craving Sourdough Bacon-Cheese Melt from the  Carnation Cafe (my favorite place right now –  if you ever go, please order it.  You’ll thank me later).  I walked inside and it was an hour wait!! I was so bummed and ended up eating… I don’t remember what I ate, so you can imagine my disappointment.  You can make reservations to almost any restaurant; your already spending time in line waiting for attractions – why wait for lunch too?
  6. Take extra clothing. This is a given, but I would recommend you take no less than 2 clean outfits along with socks. You just never know what kind of mess kids can get themselves into. During a recent trip, it started raining and we were not expecting it.  Julianna’s sock got soaked! Did I have extra socks? Of course not. haha
  7. Take plenty of water for yourself and your little one.  Julianna seems to be thirsty all the time as she is always asking for water.  It is way cheaper to take your own unopened bottle; I recently saw a couple with an unopened water bottle that they tried to sneak by security..long story short, they were sneaking in vodka instead of water.   They will trash your opened water bottle.  Another tip: a lot of vendors will give you free ice water if you ask, but don’t count on that. Once your kids starts asking for water you better come out with it quick.
  8. Use the nursery.  Disneyland has the best nursery. They have everything you could possibly need. From formula, wipes, changing table, little toilets, a microwave, they have it all! I have made several trips here – even to nurse Julianna when she was younger.   The nursery is located at the end of Main Street to the left of the Plaza Inn.  One more tip: they do not take credit cards.
  9. Pack your diaper bag smart.  Only take what you need and don’t over pack. Remember you are alone, and you shouldn’t have to take out everything that is in there just to find the wipes. I recommend you put clean clothes in the bottom (you won’t need this unless emergency). I also take a small blanket to lay Julianna on to change her diapers. Diapers and wipes on top along with sippy cups and bottles. Snacks should be on the very top. Also, get a diaper that is accessible and easy to work with.
  10. This should be a given, but get there early!!! I have accomplished a lot more in two hours at opening versus several hours in the evening. The trip will be a lot more enjoyable for you and your child.
  11. Do not be afraid to ask for help.   On my first trip, I was too shy to ask for help. Now, I ask someone to please open the door if I need to, or help with the stroller. People are always willing to help.  It’s Disneyland after all….the happiest place on earth.
  12. Enjoy yourself and indulge in the food!!!! Please, please eat mickey-shaped beignets dusted with powdered sugar.  I try to always go for that….SO.GOOD. My husbands favorite are the churros and frozen bananas, but I can live without that, hehe.  Here is a list of our favorites at each restaurant:  Sourdough Bacon-Cheese Melt at the Carnation Cafe, Gumbo or the Monte Cristo Sandwich at Cafe Orleans, the Jolly Holiday Combo (toasted cheese sandwich with tomato basil soup) at the Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe (they have amazing pastries here), Mickey beignets at the Mint Julep Bar, and the Bacon Street Dog at Award Wieners inside California Adventure.

Don’t forget that you are ultimately there for your child. Live in the moment, trips might not always go as planned, but in your child’s eyes, it will always be the best trip yet!!

XO, Jan

Here are a few pictures from our last Disney Trip! 🙂

I SALUTE YOU, PARENTS

I admit, I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I became a mother. It is beautiful, don’t get me wrong, BUT never has my patience ever been tested since becoming a mother. I had no idea what it would actually be like.  I’ve seen children screaming in the store, I’ve seen children with dirty clothing on, and I’ve seen children pull tantrums left and right, but this time, it is not a strangers child, but my very own child. I never thought this would happen to me: my own child is screaming and pulling a tantrum in the store.  So many times I have seen this with other parents, so many times I judged and wondered why they weren’t doing anything about it?! I have realized that a lot of times, there is only so much you can do. I have put a list together of moments that I judged when I shouldn’t have, and unless you have kids of your own, you shouldn’t either.
  1.  “When I have a kid, I will never let that happen to me”: I cannot tell you how many times I said this to myself pre-baby. Just don’t say it. It should be more in the lines of, “When I have a child, I need to see how I will deal with this situation when it happens.” I can guarantee, whatever situation you are witnessing, you are most likely to go through the same thing.
  2. Giving the dirty look as a strangers child is on the floor with a tantrum: To all parents out there, I salute you. We just went through this, this past weekend: We went to IKEA’s grand opening weekend.  We were super excited because we love IKEA and guess what? It was a horrible trip. Julianna was annoyed. She was crying hysterically at one point. My husband and I realized, sometimes we have to pick our battles. Sometimes you have to leave a store and let them cool down outside, sometimes you have to let the tantrum pass, sometimes you just have to take deep breaths and tackle it straight on.
  3. “Can’t they just sit their kids on the cart so they will stop running.”- This was something that would upset me. But now I see, I try and try….it ain’t going to happen. Julianna refuses half the time to stay put in the cart. She wants to run wild, be her own little independent self. I try to accept this, and walk with her and try to make it fun. I want to go crazy at times, but it’s the process of having a growing toddler.
  4. “How dare two adults go outside their home with their child so they can eat at a restaurant!” I understand, many times, people don’t want to sit close to the family with toddlers. But we as parents, deserve to go out whether it be with our little ones or not.
  5. Have some compassion!!  You are probably judging a mother who has had no sleep, no rest, no alone time. To all those mamas out there, I salute you. Keep doing the amazing job that you are doing. No mom is perfect, but we do try to be perfect in our own perfect self.

XO, Jan

Here are some pictures of Julianna and I before our Ikea trip. 🙂


Put Yourself Out There

I am not one to have New Years resolutions, but I am one to have short-term goals and do my best to accomplish them. That is exactly what I want to do this year – I want to handle s***. I have to admit, sometimes it is hard to put yourself out there!…to want to accomplish something so bad, but yet afraid of what other people might say/think about you. I have this fear all the time, and at the same time, I know I need to put myself out there to eventually accomplish my ultimate goals.  A famous quote close to me reads “Until you spread your wings, you will have no idea how far you can fly.” Corny, I know, but so true!

So I tell all of you out there – and also as a challenge to myself – put yourself out there! Or else you will NEVER know how much of your dreams you are actually able to accomplish. You want to start your own business, go for it! Do you question if your good enough to make art or if you have exceptional photography skills? Just get out there!! Do something!  Start small and grow big. Are you tired of your job?  Go look for a new one…apply to 30 jobs if you have to.  I must have gone to about 10 different job interviews before I got my current job. No one wanted to hire me because I had no experience in the field. When I thought I wasn’t going to go anywhere, I received the phone call and was hired! I have told myself – I don’t want to be 50 years old and look back, and tell myself why I never went for it. I don’t want to be that person. I would rather start something and fail, rather never have started at all. Things might not catch on right away, but eventually, you will grow. I want my blog to grow more, I want to do more creative jobs, I want to travel more, I want to just do more – not by myself, but with my family right by my side.

Put yourself out there. You have nothing to lose. Connect with people, network and empower each other. There is nothing more beautiful than seeing other people succeed and get to feed off that energy – good energy.  Please pass it on,  we sure need more of it… Handle s*** because you can!

XO, Jan

 

 

Hello To The New Year!!

2016 and the holidays have finally come to a close. For some reason, that made me really happy!  This holiday season was really tiring for us…from organizing, decorating, cooking, dressing… I just wanted all of it to be over, haha!  I am so happy to put all decor away and start fresh and clean the house. I am not the type to really talk about New Year resolutions, but I do have some in mind. I hope this year, overall, is a great one – where I grow more as a mature mother and wife and really enjoy the little things in life.

Below are all of my New Years’ Party Decorations. I hope you enjoy and get some inspiration for some party decorations of your own. Let’s all have a great week!

XO, Jan