{OC Love} Holiday Mini Photo Sessions {& Giveaway!}

So who has booked their family photo for their holiday cards this year…let me see a show of hands…

I’m waiting….

Still waiting….

You know the photo you take to remember how young you still are?  And how cute your kids are??

Hmmm….lack of hands. You would think everyone has tons on their plate or something….school, kids activities, jobs, running around like headless chickens, catching up on DVR shows

I kid, I kid. But seriously, you haven’t booked this yet??! {Kidding on this too…I just booked ours last week.}

Lucky for all of us, Sandy Heit, (who is my most favorite family photographer and who has been taking all of our family photos since Addie was 2 weeks old). Has just opened up a few more Mini Holiday Photo Sessions!!! Yippee!

Sandy has chosen a few locations to offer additional sessions. 

These are her 3 favorite locations (and yes, ours is going to be at one of them too….we’re branching outside of our house this year.)

San Juan Capistrano – Tuesday, November 1st – 3:45, 4:15, 4:45, 5:15

Laguna Beach – Monday, October 17th – 4:30, 5:00. 5:30

Noguchi Garden – Sunday, October 23rd – 4:00, 4:30, 5:00, 5:30

Why I love “Mini Sessions“:

1. They last about 20 minutes, which in the grand scheme is realtively painless and is MUCH easier to fit into your family’s schedule. (And faster for your little punks to get the treat you promised them for being good…I mean, if you were a bribing kinda parent that is…)

2. They cost less cashola than a full session, which is nice when you’re having a tight budget year. It’s $275 + tax for Sandy to show you 10-15 images in an online gallery and/or studio appointment. Which includes $150 credit towards your images!

3. Did you read that part? INCLUDES a $150 credit for ordering images which can be used either for prints OR digital files!! (That’s like having free money to spend! Though my father-in-law and husband are both reading this and saying…noooo it’s still costing you money.  Then I say, but “I’m saving money”. Then they say, “But you’re still spending money”.  And I say, “Yes, but LESS money”.) It’s kind of all in how you justify it in your brain, don’t you think??

4. Again, did you catch that part about “OR digital files?” This year Sandy is offering packages to purchase the digital files. 1, 3 or all the digital images from your mini session. Love this!!!

5. Another great idea for a mini session? Use it as an early Holiday gift for a grandparent with the kids….seriously, how much would this gift be loved!!!

My favorite tips Sandy gives for choosing what to wear:

1. Choose items for the entire family as if you were creating one outfit. If your choices were all on one person, would the result be pleasing? (Look past the fact you could be wearing 25 articles of clothing….)

2. Choose one pattern item and then select the rest of the family’s clothes from within that pattern. (Kind of the same approach to decorating ~ use a piece of art, or area rug and coordinate pillows, furniture, etc…)

3. Pick your outfit first. The one YOU feel great in, then coordinate everyone else to you. (Oh my! Mom first??  I think I like that idea!)

GIVEAWAY!!!

You guessed it, Sandy is giving away 1 HOLIDAY MINI SESSION! (This is a $275 value which includes the session, and photo credit.)

RULES: Leave a comment below letting us know your location preference from above. (1 entry)

OPTIONAL: Additional entry: “Like” Sandy Heit Photography on Facebook and let her know My Favorite Everything sent you, then come back and let me know you did.  (1 entry).

Giveaway closes 9:00pm PST Sunday, October 2nd, 2011.

And here is one more treat, book your session and mentionMy Favorite Everything” and Sandy will give you a complimentary 5 x 7 print from your session!

Seriously, don’t wait. These sessions will be lucky to make it to Sunday.  They go soooo fast! Contact Sandy 949.515.3905 or sandy@sandyheit.com

Good Luck ~ and Happy Holidays!
(Can I say that before Halloween?!??)

{oc love} wink lash studio!

I love, love, love Wink Lash Studio!!!!  Call me crazy, but I decided to give the whole eyelash extension thing a try…and guess what, I LOVE it!!!

This summer my eyes looked like they belonged to a normal, regular sleeping, makeup wearing adult (which they didn’t, but they did)…go figure.

Even my Hubs noticed them faster than he has EVER noticed a new haircut or new outfit…

I never had to wear mascara which was GREAT for daily swimming with the Little Punks.

I never had to worry about smudges or under-eye darkness from wearing mascara.

But best of all, when I woke up in the morning, I looked HUMAN! As in no matter how many times I had been up with the Littles during the night, no matter if I had been too tired to remove my makeup the night before, no matter what…My eyes looked good, which transalted to mommy looking a whole lot better than normal in the morning!

So if you live in the Orange County area and are thinking about trying extensions NOW is the time.  The awesome ladies at Wink Lash Studio are doing a Grand Opening promotion, a full set of lashes is $120 (regulalry $160, a discount is certainly a favorite thing, and this is a GREAT deal! It’s good until October 31st.)  They last 2 – 3 weeks, and then you go for a quick fill (about $60).  Mine lasted about 2-1/2 weeks each time.  Here’s some great “Before & Afters” as well as some fun photos of the studio.

Other Favorite Things??

The studio is SUPER clean, has great parking, you get to take a little snooze while they put your lashes on (honestly, I slept every time I went) for 45 minutes to an hour (LOVE THAT!!!)

These cute girls know what they are doing…and what a perfect time to try it out before the fall & holiday party season takes over our lives.

I had mine removed before my month away (since they couldn’t be filled while I was in Canada).  I plan to go back just as soon as there is a little more ca$hola in the budget for mama! I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them!

Photo Credit: Wink Lash Studio

{Disclosure: No secrets to share, I am just a very happy customer letting you know about something I love! Hope you all take advantage of this awesome deal. Be sure to say hello to Sam!}

{OC Fun} Sunset Splash ~ Free at the Hyatt Huntington Beach

Back in June we took the Little Punks to check out the Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach.  Since it’s only 10 minutes from our house, it has always seemed like a perfect staycation spot, but of course since it’s 10 minutes out our door, I’ve never stopped to check it out.

Mistake.

Should have tried it ages ago. Don’t wait as long as I did.

The Hyatt Regency Huntington Beach has a fantastic kids pool area, “Slyders”, with great water slides to entertain the whole family. During the summer you need to be a guest at the hotel to use it, but other times during the year you can get a day pass for the kids pool area. And I loved the fact the lifeguards said you need to be on the waterslides with your kids and not just send them off to play…..in other words, put down your iPhone and have some fun!

So we did.

Honestly, Addie and Hayden could have done this all.day.long.  In fact they kinda did. So much fun! They were all over those slides.  Of course Piper wanted in on the action too…

But she wasn’t so sure as she and Hubs headed down the smallest slide…

And hitting the pool came as bit of a shock (for  both I think)…

Waaaaaiit…..WHAT did I just do????

OK, never mind, THAT was fun!

And then we couldn’t keep her off either.  So it was definitely fun for the whole family.

After more slides than I can recall, we stopped for a really nice lunch.  I opted for the Asian Chicken Salad. Simple & refreshing. The kids kept sneaking chicken from my plate….little stinkers!

Hubs enjoyed the Pulled Pork “Slyders”…..delicious! Both were very tasty and served pool side.

The hotel had arranged for a fun area attraction to visit the kids pool that day. Meet The Kite Man. I have never seen someone so talented with a kite!  After showing all the kids how kites work, he went about helping the older kids make kites of their own to take down to the beach.

(Can you tell Hayden is a little tired from all the slides???  Piper was asleep on my back and Addie was passed out in the stroller!  But Hay couldn’t turn away for a second!)

Then it was off to the beach (conveniently right across the street from the Hyatt, so it’s beyond easy to enjoy both the hotel pool and the beach as a hotel guest).

After flying their own kites around, it was time for The Kite Man to show his true skills.  His giant kite was flown back and forth a bazillion times over the kids in the sand and would stop directly over a nose or a toe or whatever he chose.  It was amazing and loads of giggles were had by all as the kite came to a screeching halt over and over again!  I was so impressed!!!

(Mind you this is also where my phone went missing….apparently it thought hanging out at the beach would be more fun than hanging out with me…fab)

But here is the seriously good news for you (or at least those of you that live in Orange County). On the third Friday of each summer month, the Hyatt and K-EARTH 101 put on a free concert at the Hyatt’s main pool, “Sunset Splash”.

The band is sooooo much fun!  Reservations are not required, however there is limited space.  So you want to get there early.  I would vote to head to the beach early on Friday with your family (park with the hotel valet, then walk across the bridge).  You can check back in at the pool closer to the show to be sure you are on their access list . (Head straight to the hotel main pool).  That way you’re both there early enough to get in, but also get to really enjoy your day there.

There was great food and drinks available….but I also saw some people bringing in pizzas, not sure how that worked, but you could also call and ask the concierge for the specific details.

The band started at 8:00 (I think), with the pool opening at 7:00 for the show.  We grabbed a couple of lounge chairs, changed into warmer clothes in the restrooms, and after a quick yummy bite, were ready to dance!!

Piper was a permanent fixture on my back…

Hayden and I were swinging and twirling all over the place…I think we kinda created a scene :-)

All in all lots of family fun was had.  I wish they held the concert more as we couldn’t make it in July and are now out of town for August….and it’s sadly the last one for the summer.  But NEXT YEAR, I’m putting it on my calendar for each month for sure!

If you are looking for the best way to spend your Friday night this week, THIS is your thing.  Give the Hyatt Huntington Beach a call for specific details or check out the Sunset Splash site.  And if you go please, please, please, get a good dance in for us!!

{OC Fun} “Fully Charged” & Fun!

We went to the Circus at the end of July.  We had gone last year (we being Addie and me, and a friend for each of us). But this year Hay was old enough, so Grandpa and I took the girls. The girls “read” their programs from cover to cover, anxious to know about everything.

And Addie was JUST AS EXCITED as last year! (The only reason you don’t see how excited Hay was is that she was too close to me to photograph).

Then the show started. All the performers greeting and welcoming the crowds.  The “Giants” as Addie calls them (stilts), “clowns”, “ballerinas”, and “Ringmaster”.

And then they saw the elephants.  And we lost them for the rest of the show…

Forgive my lack of photography skills.  The Little Punks were jumping with excitement.  They were just so happy to be there!

Check Ticketmaster to see when Fully Charged will be in your area.  We were truly impressed with this year’s show. The Little Punks have asked me to “read” their programs to them every day, and Addie even took her’s to school.

It’s worth it, I promise!

Here are my few tips:

1. Be sure to get their for the pre-show. You can go down on the circus floor one hour before show time and get up close with all the acts. This is MY FAVORITE part of the show. They have temporary tatoos, clown noses, stilt walkers, clown acts, and an elephant that paints. Very, very fun. We missed it this year with the days crazy schedule, but definitely plan for it.

2. If you have young kids (especially still young to potty training) be sure to use the potty before you find your seats, and then try and grab them and take them a few minutes before interission. I tried to take Addie, but she didn’t want to go.  Then all of a sudden she “HAD TO GO”.  Greeeeaaaaaat. We stood in that long restroom line with loads of other moms and kids with crossed legs. One mom actually let her child go in the sink, and I seriously considered putting Addie’s booty in the big trash can….thankfully we made it but I was nervous.  You may even consider throwing on a pull up, “just in case” even if your child is fully potty trained. Sometimes life is out of our control.

3. Buy a bag of popcorn. We always do this as it’s typically the least expensive treat (at $8) and our girls LOVE, LOVE, LOVE popcorn.  It keeps them busy, and they feel like they have a treat. With their sippy cups in my bag, we’re usually pretty set.

4. If you go to an evening show (we’ve done the 7:30pm show both years), pack pajamas. Change them when you get to the car. Always easier to transfer to their beds when you get home.  Just be sure to wash their hands and face…wipes and antibacterial works for me for one night.

Other than that, enjoy the show!  It may be a pain to pack em up and do the whole thing, but in the end, they have soooo much fun, I can’t imagine missing it!!

{Family Fun} Summer Park Fun

There is something great about the summer. OK, A LOT of great things about the summer. but one thing I especially love is using our neighborhood parks more often.  We were recently introduced to the Coastal Peaks Park in Newport Coast when we were at a friends birthday. And I hate to admit it, but I didn’t even know it existed prior to the party (and um, embaressingly enough my parents live super close to it…).

Anywhoo, a couple weeks back as I was getting our dinner ready I realized since we were grilling, we could grill anywhere. Why not take it to the park!?

I called up Grandma & Grandpa and asked them to meet us, (and OH could they bring the BBQ supplies?) I packed up our dinner, and then sent a text to Hubs to meet us there after work.

Hubs especially loved these “cages”. The Little Punks ran back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. We were wishing we had about 8 soccer balls to let em lose with in there!

While the food was cooking on the grill, Addie and Hubs took turns teaching Piper how to do “Dumbersaults” (Addie’s word not mine, but I just.can’t.correct.it!).

And of course, dinner wouldn’t be right without a little adult “grape juice”. Not to worry if you forget cups, the kids juice bottles work after you pour their drink into their sippy cups…

An easy park dinner doesn’t take much.

1. I brought a Flank Steak in a Ziplock marinading in Stubbs Beef Marinade.

2. Yukon Gold Potatoes were cut and wrapped with herb butter in foil packets to place right on the grill. I had boiled them for about 15 minutes ahead of time to speed up the grill time. You could also just use regular old butter or olive oil with Salt & Pepper (and fresh herbs if you have them).

3. Zucchini and Green Onions on the grill.

4. Salad in a Ziplock.  We poured the salad dressing over it at the park and shook the bag all about.

Super simple.

Some paper plates & napkins, and plastic utensils….clean up was a breeze.

Then of course came dessert.

And I LOVE grilled bananas!!  So much that I didn’t even get to take a photo they were gone so fast. There are lots of ways to grill them….but when I want to make my life simple, I peel them and throw them in a foil packets with some goodies. In this case some leftover Rolo candies (about 4 in each), sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon.  Then (Heaven forbid) I brought a can of whipped cream (that yes, I DID have in my house). It was a whole lot easier than packing ice cream.

We threw the banana foil packets on the grill when we sat down to eat dinner so it was all nice and warm and ready when dinner was done….

It was kind of a hit with the Little Punks.

Take advantage of your parks in the summer!  On this particular evening we were one of two families there. It was our own private playground! Call up a friend and split the dinner load.

Dinner is a breeze, and you get good quality family &/or friend time. What more could you ask for??

What FAVORITE dinners do you like to take along to cook out?

{OC Local Life} Pure Blu Spa ~ Soothe your soul

A few weeks ago I joined a wonderful group of lifestyle bloggers at Pure Blu Spa, at the Newport Beach Marriott Hotel.  It’s funny how you become so accustomed to your own trained maze and habits, that looking outside that bubble just seems like too much effort. Right?!

But sometimes when you do, you can be pleasantly surprised by a fun new discovery.

That’s what this particular event did for me.  Let’s just skip over the part how that Sunday morning I was so off my game (something that is becoming the norm for me these days), that I searched for 20 minutes for my sunglasses (that were on top of my head), and drove 10 minutes to the spa (8 of those minutes listening to the “Curious George” DVD playing in the car ~ when there WERE NO KIDS in the car, and I didn’t even NOTICE IT WAS PLAYING.)

Yes, one could say I was in need of a few minutes away.

When I pulled into the hotel it was nice to see the updated look (as I think the last time I had been there might have been in high school, or possibly a wedding after college, not really sure…I just know it had been awhile).

And then I quickly spotted this fabulous sign right inside the door. At that moment, the gates of Heaven shined their light down on me.  It’s the little things that keep me happy. And it was not just a little coffee stand, this Starbucks is the real deal with the goodies, snacks, coffee, everything! I picked up a nice BIG Iced Latte and headed on my way.

There are a few different pools on the property, but Pure Blu Spa has it’s own spa pool which I always think is nice. Makes your time a little more quiet and peaceful. Not just because spa pools are typically adult only pools, but you are also not with the larger mass of hotel guests.  Just a little more serene and relaxing (which, when you don’t get to get away too often, is nice.)

While the spa is fairly large at 14,000 square feet, it has a very intimate feeling. The Relaxation Rooms were very pleasant to wait in….though not very “quiet” while we were there!  Thank goodness it was mostly our group as we were not doing a good job with “Spa Voices” but nice so to catch up with friends. Something to think about if you wanted to get 6 or 8 friends together for a get away day…when you take over the spa, it’s not so bad to make a little “noise”.

I loved that the locker room, while not directly connected to the outside (a feature I  personally LOVE in spas) did have a set of wonderfully LARGE frosted glass windows that let in the outside light.

Saltwater hot tub. Always a welcome feature.

That little area at the end? It’s a cold plunge for your feet after using the steam room.  I’ve seen full cold plunges before, but never a shallow little foot bath, loved this detail!

Here is where I have to apologize, because I had some really good photos on my phone, but I lost my phone at the beach this past weekend. (Can’t even tell you how sad I am about this…). Needless to say I can’t share them, but what I can share with you is one of my new FAVORITE treatments.

We were invited to receive a sampling of treatments, 2 of which I WISH could have continued all day!!!  The first was a facial by Andrea.  This woman was HILARIOUS, best personality and determined to get the “DEAD, DEAD, DEAD” cells off my face!  When she was done with me, my face was no longer a graveyard, it was alive and feeling young again!  (And that was only after 15 minutes, I can’t imagine what would have happened after an hour!)

The next big winner was the Bamboo Massage. This treatment isn’t even on the spa menu yet, and normally I would never choose anything that sounds “new, trendy, or special”. I’m just a simple person who likes a gold ole regular massage.

But that little bit of 15 minute Heaven changed my mind.

When the therapist used hot bamboo and started to roll through the INTENSE and INSANE knots in my back I can’t even describe how awesome it felt. Never mind the fact that I was wrapped in a luxuriously soft cashmere blanket (added bonus), that hot bamboo all on it’s own was incredible.

I asked the therapist if using the bamboo made giving a massage easier or more difficult.  Her response: “MUCH easier” as the bamboo allowed her to apply more pressure without having to give more pressure. In other words it took less strength from her, and the fact that the bamboo was heated meant your muscles responded better and faster.

From the client’s side, at times when my back is as bad as it was that day, it’s not always comfortable when they have to “work out a muscle”. But the heated bamboo just felt awesome! I was not in pain and really felt like even in that 15 minutes she was able to do so much good to my back!

Here’s the fun part, Pure Blu is offering My Favorite Everything readers 30% off the treatments we received that day: Facial, Paraffin Hand Treatment, and the Bamboo Lime Massage until the end of August!  How fabulous is that!!!  Just mention the blog when you’re booking for your discount {949.720.7900 for appointments}. The extra cool part is that the Bamboo Lime Massage ISN’T EVEN ON THE SPA MENU yet:

Bamboo Lime Massage:
This remarkable massage technique utilizes bamboo sticks as an extension of the therapist’s fingertips.  The heated bamboo sticks will knead, roll and tap along your body creating a greater increase in circulation.  This heat therapy is a mixture of smooth light pressure to consistent firm pressure to really release any kinks your body may have.  The conclusion of this massage experience includes a pure blu body ritual for the calves and feet leaving you feeling like you’ve floated off the massage table.

The Bamboo Massage is $225 for 80 minutes and $160 for 50 minutes, but will be on special until then end of August for $190 for 80 minutes and $135 for 50 minutes.

I’ve left a little not so subtle reminder for Hubs that this might be a necessary gift…..I can’t wait to go back!  As I was leaving that day, I noticed a sign that read:

“A spa where souls are soothed”

Go soothe your soul, you deserve it.

{Disclosure: I was a guest of Pure Blu for the afternoon. All opinions are my own. My back is quite thankful for that bamboo!}

{OC Local Love} The Circus is Here & it’s “Fully Charged”!

My Punks are so into the Circus, it’s almost comical!

Last year Addie and I made a girls night out of it, grabbing a friend for both of us to see the circus. Addie was 2 years & 4 months and she LOVED it!  The show started at 7:30, we went early to see the elephants getting their baths and to enjoy the pre-show (where you get up close and personal with all the performers on the main floor before the show starts. DONT MISS THIS!)

When I asked Addie what she wanted to do for her birthday this year she said “CIRCUS!!”  We’ve had no other access or mention of a circus other than that night.  So I know the show had an impact on her.  Thanks to the Little’s auntie, we now have loads of circus books that are read frequently, and often (I know that means the same thing…but really, I’ve memorized most of them now…seemed fitting for me to say twice.)

So of course we are planning on going again this year, and Hayden is just as excited to go this time around.

Here’s what the FULLY CHARGED show promises this year…

“Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey® invites families to disconnect from the digital world and plug into the most electrifying circus experience ever at the all-new show Fully Charged, where megawatts of thrills explode off the arena floor with breathtaking dare-devilry, superhuman stunts and never-before-seen performances that will energize Children Of All Ages!

Fully Charged is lead by dynamo newcomer, Brian Crawford Scott, who energizes audiences throughout the show as he introduces amazing acts from around the world and masterfully guides circus-goers on a remarkable journey while singing original songs. Fully Charged celebrates all kinds of “performance power”: horse-power, man-power, athletic power and features amazing circus acts that can only be seen at The Greatest Show On Earth®”

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey “Fully Charged” will be visiting Southern California July 20th to August 14th.

Staples Center ~ July 20 to July 24

Honda Center ~ July 27 to August 8

Citizens Business Bank Arena ~ August 10 to August 14

Visit Ticketmaster for tickets, and show times. Be sure to use promo code “Mom” for a discounted family pack for 4, for $48.

See ya at the show!!  Here’s a few more fun photos to tempt you….

{OC Local Love} The Great Park

Last Sunday morning as everyone piled into “Mommy & Daddy’s” bed to figure out what we all wanted to do that day. I did a quick scan of Just Spotted as those girls have got it together with the OC haps.  I noticed the Orange County Great Park mentioned, and while I’ve been hearing about it, I’ve never been and was totally clueless as to where it was. I’m not going to completely embarrass myself and tell you how off the mark I was to its location…

What I will say is that Hubs said, let’s go for it, and we were hightailing our bunny tails around the house for the next 30 minutes. (We tend to go to things early morning – girls are in better moods, mom & dad are in better moods, and places aren’t nearly as busy).

And did I mention this yet? The Orange County Great Park is FREE.

FREE as in, no parking fees, no carousel fees, no balloon ride fees….NO FEES = FREE!


We had one of the best Sundays EVER. It was a beautiful day. As we approached the park we saw a giant orange balloon in the air. The girls were over the top excited.  After a quick sign-in with guest services, we were given a buzzer for our turn (a mere 15 minutes later).

We killed the time with a Carousel ride, and checking out the Kid Rock climbing area. (Shaded, picnic tables, loads of “rocks” to climb on, soft playground, and misting to keep you cool).

THEN came the balloon ride. So fabulous!  Totally safe, just long enough and beautiful views! Loved it!!

Another Carousel ride, and we were off to check out the Farmers Market (which opened at 10AM.  It’s there each Sunday).  SO.MANY.DELICIOUS.FRUITS.TO.SAMPLE. Heaven on earth!  I can’t wait to go back and pick up more peaches!!  The girls LOVE grilled corn, so we grabbed a couple and headed over to the vegetable garden. Loads of raised beds to visit and ask questions of the caretakers. The kids loved seeing corn and then realizing they were eating corn too! Hunting for lizards and checking out the different veggies was fascinating to them.

The park, the farmers market, the balloon, merry-go-round, the band entertaining everyone….it was a perfect lazy Sunday morning/afternoon.  I HIGHLY recommend the Orange County Great Park if you have not checked it out…the future plans are awesome!


There were too many photos to narrow it down. Here’s a quick scan below, or click to enlarge.

Happy Weekend!!

{OC Life} Studio Seaside Re-Sale Event!

Orange County Mamas, what are you doing Saturday, June 4th??  I’ve got a FAB idea for you that involves QUITE A FEW FAVORITES!!

You all know I love Studio Seaside. Every chance I get to get some ME TIME in, I hop on over there.  But there is something else that I really love about this little gem of a studio, they are ACTIVELY INVOLVED with the community around them.  This Saturday, June 4th is their 3rd Annual Re-Sale Fundraiser.

ALL of the proceeds will be going to The Maddie James Foundation, I can’t begin to tell you about this sweet little girls story without breaking down completely.  No family or child should ever be told their child has a few short months to live, a 0% survival rate.

Heartbreaking.

I love the project that is being realized in Maddie’s name. The Learning Center in Dana Point will be an amazing memorial to her, and an incredible place for families to visit with their children.

So if you have a second, stop by the re-sale event at the studio. Lots of cute, gently used baby & kids “clothes, toys & gadgets”!

And if an amazing Charity, great deal, fabulous studio weren’t enough….here’s two more “carrots” for you: (I have not tried either, but I’m very much looking forward to it Saturday!! ~ these are Zoe’s/Studio Seasides tempting words…)

“Cupcakes for a Cause The home-made cupcakes are everything a cupcake should be…moist and topped with LOTS of icing!  Cupcakes will be at Studio Seaside Saturday morning to purchase, or you can order them for an event you have coming up.  Check out their site: www.cupcakesforcause.com or contact Elizabeth Olsen (eolsonmail@gmail.com) for more details. They donate ALL proceeds to charity…how awesome is that”

“Sweet Spots Truffles These little bites of heaven are totally addicting…but totally worth it! Truffles will be at Studio Seaside Saturday morning to purchase (100% of money to charity) or you can order them up for the future (they make a GREAT hostess gift)  Find them on Facebook or contact April or Siti for more details (aprilnugent@comcast.net or mail@siti-haryani.com)”

Hope to see some of you there!  I’ll be the one trying to wrangle in her little monkeys, hiding my tears behind sunglasses, eating boatloads of treats. (‘cuz they don’t count when they are for a wonderful cause!)

{OC Local} Team Tiny Oranges Reached for the Cure!

A few weeks ago, Hubs and woke up to screaming like we had never heard from Addie’s room.

We both went running.

Hay and Addie are prone to small nightmares….you’ll hear “That’s my yo-yo!”, or “No, that’s mine”, while they are sound asleep. But this was different.  Addie was almost shaking and twitching like a seizure – but not, her eyes looking everywhere – but not, shrieking and screaming….nothing would console her.  It seemed to go on forever.

It has never happened again, and I would likely say it was a night terror of some form. But it was enough to scare the living daylights out of us and discuss with her doctor. In that moment we didn’t know whether to call 911, or her pediatrician, or what to do. We had no idea what was happening.

And we were terrified.

Once she had calmed down again, I slept at the end of her bed for a most of the night, silently crying. I have never felt so helpless.

Even to write this I am in tears. It truly scared me to my inner core.

The next morning I thought of all those families that have to hear the horrible news that their child has Cancer, as we were preparing to run with Team Tiny Oranges in a few weeks to help raise money for Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation.

To hear that your child has Cancer would be unbearable words to hear. Not to know how to help them, console them, or take the pain away. Heart wrenching.

So to say that I am so proud of Jen and Team Tiny Oranges is an understatement!  She made an amazing commitment to not only run PCRF’s Cinco de Mayo 1/2 Marathon, but to also raise $20,000, which along with her team she EXCEEDED!

(Image: Tiny Oranges/Kim Harvey Photography)

Jen’s post sums up the day and the experience perfectly, but I wanted to share a few family shots that I took (Forgot my big camera, sorry!! These are all from my phone). We had such a fun morning that I would definitely encourage you to do this with your Littles and your family next year.  If you do not live locally, check out races dedicated to children’s causes in your area.  This was a hard morning for me to walk around, I definitely kept my sunglasses ON my face as I read shirts with “In Memory of…”

You should never have to read those words with a child’s name after it.

But the energy, support, and commitment to helping all those children was awesome!

It was such an amazing morning to spend as a family with so much focus on kids.

The night before was spent practicing our run all over the house…

Pretend City was there in full force with lots of great kids activities.

Petting zoo fun.

Sky high trampoline jumping!! Go Addie!

And then it was time to get lined up for the kids race….

That’s our little Addie!!  Go girl, go! She ran so strong, we were so proud of her!!! The girls love the medals hanging in their rooms.

The day was most definitely a favorite experience, even if it brought sad tears to our eyes at the same time.