Lizzie Wall, Founder of Kids Gifts & Toys and Mother of Two Boys

 
Lizzie with her son Hudson

Lizzie with her son Hudson

How was it to become a Mom? 
I have to say I adored becoming a Mum but it also came as a HUGE shock! 
Growing up I never had a burning desire to become a mother as I know other women have. But I knew it would be part of my future. So many people warn you that having a child will change your life, but you don’t realise until you have a baby how true that is. It was a hard adjustment knowing that a little baby depending solely on me. The loss of independence was quite a lot to cope with in the early days. 
However, I was also totally blown away by how powerful our bodies are as woman. That we could create, nurture, give birth and then feed these tiny little humans. I just kept looking at him and still do to this day and think WOW, we created this human. That is one pretty phenomenal experience! 

How do you balance (or try to balance) your life as a professional blogger, wife and mom?  
I have to say this is pretty hard work.  I will admit, I am not particularly good at it at all. I think it is really hard as a woman especially these days, as really we want it all. We want to be the best mums, wives and career women too! I have worked out we can’t have it all and be 100% happy in all 3 parts. It is best just to be content with whatever path we have chosen. We also as mothers have to be happy as well as having happy kids.  I went back to work 3 days a week when my eldest was 11 months old and that was pretty tough going as he cried every drop off at Nursery for 8 weeks. After another year, I went back 4 days and I always felt each day go by in a blur! I salute all full time working mums as seriously juggling getting ready, day care drop offs and pick ups, cooking and cleaning and then trying to find some family time 5 days a week is so hard. 
I work now 2 days a week with a view to 3 days next year and each night including weekends, I work for 3 – 4 hours on my blog. I try not to do my blog work on the 3 days I take care of Hudson, nor after school as I feel these years when they are so young fly by so fast, that I need to be present in the moment with them. But I also realise I am lucky to have these days with them, not all mothers do. We struggle financially with me not working full time but they are only young once. Hudson will go to school in 2 years and then I am sure things will change again. 

What’s your “me” time? 
Hmm, does that exist as a mum?! To be honest my hubby is quite good with taking the kids out and about but that is usually so I can work on my blog. I do try to get a pedicure and manicure every few months and that time is utterly precious and I feel like I am in heaven. In between that time my nails look shocking! haha

Do you have any beauty tips you could share with us?
I love my Garnier BB cream! I couldn’t live without it. It moisturizes, has UVA/B, and covers up. I put it on in the car just as we are leaving  to go out for the day and pop on a little Stila Convertible colour in Magnolia or Gladiola and some lip gloss (yep so 90’s!) and it takes about 2 mins max. And always a spritz of parfum! I adore Balenciaga at the moment.

Photo credit: La Petite Etoile

Photo credit: La Petite Etoile

Do you have a secret to get your kids eat veggies? (it’s becoming more and more difficult on my side ;)
Hmm, no but welcome to any suggestions!!! I tend to hide vegetables grated up in sauces. But honestly my kids need to eat more vegetables. We planted a veggie patch this spring but I think my children will only eat the sweetcorn and carrots from it…

What’s your motto as a mom (if you have one)? Or maybe 3 words to describe your education philosophy?
What a great question. Hmm, I honestly just try to be the best I can be. No mother or child is perfect. We all have good and bad days and I look at each day being the start of something new. I like to make my kids laugh and I hope that most days there are more laughter than tears in our household! 

Because a mom’s life can be challenging and because we all have bad days, what do you do when you loose it? 
I am not one of those gentle earth mothers who talks softly and doesn’t say “no” to their child. I have lost it with the kids A LOT. If it is quite bad, I try to remove myself from the situation and walk into another room to calm down. It is hard though as they tend to follow me!! 

How would you describe your style in terms of kids’ room décor? Do you have any favorite brands? 
Ooh I adore kids’ rooms.  My style I guess is monochrome with pops of colour. Scandi meets boho or Warhol! I like a white background and accessorizing with colour either through toys, decals, books, linen, painted furniture or cushions.  I am also obsessed with grid and anything mint and together they match perfectly.
I can never be completely Scandi though as I am not minimalist. I also adore vintage furniture and try to include that in my rooms as much as possible. I love our French school desk I picked up on Ebay for example. It is practical as well as looks great! 
That is a tough call regarding favourite brands as I love so many.  I try to always support handmade or ethically produced as much as possible with my blog. I love Down to the Woods, Inkibabinki, Minimel, Hay Design, House Doctor, Pax and Hart, Charlie and Jae. Really the list goes on and on. 

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What’s your kids’ favorite book right now? 
An Awesome Book by Dallas Clayton. 

What is/was their favorite lullaby?  
Brahms Lullaby

What is/was your favorite baby-care product? 
Brauer Oral Teething Drops – a god send for a teething baby! 

 

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Countdown before a glittery Christmas with your kids!

glittery-christmas

The holidays are right around the corner and all your family and friends will be getting together very soon. This final countdown before a glittery Christmas is such a special time for our kids!

I really enjoy being caught in the spiral of Christmas Magic which started on December 1st: decorating the Christmas tree and enjoying its wonderful smell throughout the house, counting down the days on the advent calendar, baking some Christmas cookies (see a great recipe here), joyfully singing Christmas carols like the famous "Vive le vent", which is the French version of "Jingle Bells"...

And enjoying some traditional kids Christmas movies like this very beautiful and moving Mickey Christmas Carol from 1983.

Less than one week to go before the big day. Have you planned our kids outfits? Christmas is also the perfect occasion to dress up and pick the right outfits for your kids. I remember how happy I was to dress up when I was a little girl. It was part of Christmas magic. Your kids will turn into princes and princesses and they will sparkle like the star of the Christmas tree!

And what's best than a glittery accessory to add a final touch to your girls outfit?  Your little girl likes to wear nail polish? No more excuse like "it's not good for kids" or "it's toxic", "it's stains". Enjoy this super safe and natural nail polish just for children! Nailmatic kids nail polish is full of super powers: this water-based varnish has defeated the nasty products! It can hide in cute coloring boxes. It magically disappears with warm soapy water. And you don't need any nail polish remover. This water-based varnish made without organic solvents is phtalate-free, formaldehyde-free, toluene-free and fragrance-free! You just need to choose from 3 different color assortments. And you will make somebody really happy!

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Don't worry, there's still time to get them by Christmas :)

VERY HAPPY HOLIDAYS & MERRY GLITTERY CHRISTMAS!!!


Looking for great rainy day activities for kids?

Bonjour!

Winter is coming. Are you ready for its long cold and rainy days making outdoor adventures impossible? Of course you don't want to see our kids get bored. You already baked a cake, played cards, and watching too much TV is not an option.  You're now looking for new ways to entertain your kids indoors?

Show your kids that being stuck inside isn't necessarily a bad thing — it can be an opportunity to learn something new while having fun. Try out this fun arts & crafts activity!

Omy Giant Coloring Poster New York City

Omy Giant Coloring Poster New York City

With Omy Design & Play Giant Coloring Posters, your kids  will be able to doodle and color for hours while developing their artistic sense. Let your kids travel and discover Paris, New York or France highlights. They can also enjoy cosmos and robots, as well as magical characters. You just need to pick their favorite theme! 

To be used on the floor, on the wall or even as a tablecloth, these posters made of recycling paper are also great for kids birthday parties.

Have fun and let me know what you think of these cool coloring posters! 

xx
Amélie

Si Mazouz, Founder of French By Design and Mother of Two

 
Beautiful Si. Photo by Sandra Fazzino

Beautiful Si. Photo by Sandra Fazzino

 

How is it to be an expat French mom in San Francisco?  Did you encounter any challenges at the beginning? What do you miss the most about the French life?
Prior to San Francisco, we moved from France to the East Coast and lived almost 5 years in Charlotte, North Carolina. Charlotte was very conservative compared to San Francisco. My culture shock happened in North Carolina, where everything was so different than I was used to. I had a hard time meeting and connecting with people because I was so different from everybody there. I still made some lifetime friends, but it took me a while to adjust to my new life there. Living is San Francisco is so similar to life in Europe, I had no problem adjusting to my new life here.  

How do you balance (or try to balance) your life as a professional blogger, wife and mom? 
Tough question. I can’t lie: in the first 3 years of my blogging journey, I would never stop, I was constantly connected to my computer or I-Phone. Then I realized it was an unhealthy habit and noticed my daughters were spending a lot of time online, probably mimicking my behavior. So we implemented tech-free weekends, where we put our devices down – or at least try to – for one day in the weekend and do family stuff. I still do it, unless I have a big project to finish. 
I am also more ‘focused’ now in my priorities. While the blog is my work and passion, my family always comes first. If I have a sick child at home, the blog is silent, and my readers understand and respect that. I am very grateful to have an audience that respects my private life and priorities. 

What’s your “me” time? 
My me time is going out for a run – which I have had to pause lately because of back pain issues – and walking with Miss Daisy, the family Golden Retriever. We love to unplug and do long walks on the beach.

Do you have any beauty tips you could share with us?
I am very natural when it comes to make up. I don’t want to spend too much time on the morning putting stuff on my face. My secret is hydration. I protect my skin with good quality creams, with SPF to avoid sun damage. Other than that, it’s a bit of mascara and off I go! If I really want a ‘va-va-voum’ effect, I always go with a vibrant red lipstick – Chanel is my favorite. It instantly dresses-up your smile and gives you a big confidence boost!

Si with daughter Maya, aged 14

Si with daughter Maya, aged 14

What’s your motto as a mom (if you have one)? Or maybe 3 words to describe your education philosophy?
Respect yourself if you want others to respect you.
Your body is your temple.
Thou shall not take sh*t.
As the mom of teenage girls, I’m dealing with body issues, self-confidence talks and, of course “boys” talks. I try to teach my girls that being a modern woman is about respecting yourself, your bodiy and treat others the way you’d want to be treated – and vice versa: expect others to treat you the way they’d want to be treated. 

What are you favorite things to do as a family?
We used to go on thrift shopping trips a lot on weekends in North Carolina. We would discover little towns, stop for lunch and hunt for vintage treasures. We haven’t had much chance to do it here in the SF bay area, but it’s in the plans. We also love to go to the beach as a family, and take Miss Daisy with us – the girl loves water! 

Because a mom’s life can be challenging and because we all have bad days, what do you do when you loose it? 
I put my running shoes on and go for a long run at the Golden Gate park. The ocean is also my happy place, very detoxifying to me.

Si's daughter Inès, aged 15

Si's daughter Inès, aged 15

How would you describe your style in terms of kids’ room décor? Do you have any favorite brands? 
I used to create furniture for my daughters when they were younger. I bought myself a jigsaw and made a desk, a bookcase, a doll house. I loved creating unique pieces for my kids décor. There were full of flaws, but my kids did not care. 
Now that I have teens, it’s all about ‘who’ they are at the time we redecorate. Inès, my oldest is in a hippie-bohemian mode. So we decorated her room with a collection of dream catchers and I am currently sewing some bench pillows with vintage African fabrics we found together at the flea market. Maya, on the contrary, is on a black and white minimalist mode - whereas pink was a big hit a year and a half ago. I just repainted her room white, with a striking jet black accent wall. I think decorating for a kid is all about embracing their style and the evolution of their taste, much like for us adults. It’s about showing them that you respect their style, and their room should reflect who they are. 

Can you tell us a little anecdote about Miss Daisy? 
Miss Daisy is our Golden Retriever, she is 6 ½ years old.  We adopted her when we moved to North Carolina. It was a gift to our daughters, with the condition that they would speak to the puppy only in English [when we arrived in the US, none of my kids spoke English]. The problem is that the kids learned English with Daisy, but when they were in school, I would speak French to the dog. Now, Daisy is ‘Frenglish’ and understands some commands in French, others in English. Also, Daisy was raised with two Yorkshire terriers who passed away 2 years ago, so she has no idea that she’s huge. At 90+ lbs, she still want to sit on our lap when there are thunderstorms or fireworks, both of which terrify her. She loves bacon and chasing squirrels at the park. 

What’s the last book you enjoyed reading?
I recently re-read Into the Wild, one of my favorite books. Sadly, I don’t have much time to read lately and after spending all day on the computer, my eyes are usually too tired to read before bed time. 

What is your favorite French product that you can’t find in the US and that you always bring back in your luggage?
Biafine Cream! This is the best cream for sunburn in the whole wide world and I keep bringing some back with me or ask my mother to get some when she visits. I’ve never found anything that miraculous in the US, have you?

Si with Miss Daisy. Photo by Sandra Fazzino

Si with Miss Daisy. Photo by Sandra Fazzino

Eva Amurri Martino, Founder of Happily Eva After and Mom of Marlowe

 
Photo credit: Nina Suh

Photo credit: Nina Suh

 

How was it to become a Mom?   
Becoming a Mom was nothing like I thought it was going to be – every detail from my child herself, to what my strengths or weaknesses were as a parent, and how my husband and I parent together– was such a surprise! That’s why I try to encourage new parents to allow the experience of Parenthood to teach them about itself, and not to have too many preconceived notions going in to it.   Being Marlowe’s Mom has taught me so much about myself, and I’m so grateful for how much it’s pushed me to grow as a person. 

How do you balance (or try to balance) your life as a professional blogger, wife and mom? 
I’m always trying to figure out a better way!  Balancing work, a relationship, and children is so hard for any woman– and I can tell you that working from home makes it extra challenging.  I’ve gotten better at locking myself away during most of the day in order to get work done– I schedule time with my husband, and make sure I’m making time for one-on-one chunks playtime with Marlowe at least a few times a week.   I always put her to bed at night, and this is our favorite time to reconnect and snuggle. 

What’s your “me” time? 
I love to pour a delicious glass of wine and either watch a cheesy TV show, or read a magazine.  If I really plan ahead, Girls Nights out help me recharge in a major way, too!

Do you have any beauty tips you could share with us?  
Find a few simple products that help you feel and look refreshed.  Make sure your every day beauty routine is simple enough that it is sustainable– and you don’t have an excuse not to do it.  For example, curl and paint your lashes, if you only have time for one thing. It takes thirty seconds and really changes your entire face. 

Do you have a secret to get your daughter eat veggies? (it’s becoming more and more difficult on my side ;)
Marlowe has always loved veggies! I started her on them (Kale, specifically) instead of rice cereal when she was first eating solids (per a recommendation from our Pediatrician) and they remain her favorite food! She wants broccoli over a cracker any day, HA! But I know that putting steamed veggies in to pasta sauces– or even meatballs before you bake them– is an excellent way to trick your kids!

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What’s your motto as a mom (if you have one)? Or maybe 3 words to describe your education philosophy?
I’m really committed to raising children who believe that kindness, humor, intelligence, and bravery are the most beautiful attributes of a person.  Those things are the goal– and how we get there is flexible.  I really have realized that parenting is something that evolves with your family– it’s nearly impossible to know where you will be in your parenting a year or five years from now!

Because a mom’s life can be challenging and because we all have bad days, what do you do when you loose it? 
Ah, yes.  The Mama Meltdown! I have had many, and I don’t see that changing any time soon.  Mostly mine are related to the work/life balance, and feeling overwhelmed or guilty.  I’m trying to let go more easily.  One of my favorite tips is to really voice when you are feeling overwhelmed and stressed.  Sometimes saying it out loud will help me diffuse the feelings so they don’t boil over.  I also let myself cry when I need to, though I usually wait until Marlowe is sleeping or in another person’s care so I don’t freak her out.  

How would you describe your style in terms of kids’ room décor? Do you have any favorite brands? 
I really love bright colors and mixed prints, and stark white with a bold pattern can be perfection in a kids’ room.  Anything to spark the imagination!  I love Oeuf, Land Of Nod, Earth Cadets, and Serena & Lily

What’s your kids’ favorite book right now?  
She is having a renaissance with the classic Goodnight Moon right now.  She used to not care about it AT ALL.  Now she wants to read it every day. 

What is her favorite lullaby?  
I sing her a bunch of songs every night at bedtime, but I always start with You Are My Sunshine and Twinkle Twinkle.

What is your favorite baby-care product?  
I have always loved Boudreaux’s Butt Past, Jurlique Baby Soothing Moisturizing Cream, and Honest Company Shampoo/Body Wash

Kyle, Marlowe & Eva. Photo credit: Nina Suh

Kyle, Marlowe & Eva. Photo credit: Nina Suh

Get your kids eat more veggies: who said it was a challenge?

So here is the thing. My almost 4 adorable little blondie, Jane, is becoming more and more reluctant to eat veggies. How come she doesn't understand all the benefits of all those delicious vegetables? :)

I've been lucky as until now she's been super easy with food, eating plenty of veggies. She never liked corn nor sweet pees but I blame daddy's taste for that ;) I was mostly offering her veggies in "purées" (mashed). Potatoes with carrots and zucchinis, squash, spinach, eggplant, pumpkin and many more. I was playing around with aromatic herbs such as basil, herbes de Provence, cilantro, parsley and a touch of olive oil of course! I couldn't have done it without the help of my kitchen best friend: the Babycook by BEABA. So I decided to ask my friends how they manage to get their kids eat veggies. 

 
beaba-babycook.jpg
 

BE PATIENT
It won't change in one day so don't get mad. Adeline felt a bit desperate. Her son Auguste would only eat tomatoes and carrots. She managed to add cucumbers to the list while mixing them to a rice salad along with tomatoes. She also recently succeeded introducing zucchinis boiled and cut in tiny pieces with pasta and grated cheese. Sweet peas used to work but not anymore. She's patient.

BE CREATIVE
Try to bypass your kids refusal to eat veggies. My friend Helene's son, Georges, is very different from his big sister, Ava, who eats plenty of veggies. When Helene offers him some veggies, she often gets a big smile followed by a "Yuk" ("Beurk" in French), like "are you kidding Mom"? Even if it's not a miracle, the best way she found is to mix veggies with rice or pasta: rice with ratatouille is a hit. And when she looses her patience (because yes it happens), she gets help from our dear old friend "Mr. Ketchup". It then becomes a game to draw a nose, mouth and eyes and to eat them with what's underneath of course!

Clémence is being imaginative. She displays the veggies in a heart shape or a happy face. And her trick is to offer her daughter Alice a choice: for your dinner, would you prefer zucchinis or spinach? A great way to avoid getting a "no" or "nothing". I love that technique and we'll talk about it in an future post. 

 
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MAKE IT PLAYFUL
Kids hate to be forced to do something but they love to play. Cécile is a lucky one! Her daughter Romane has learned to love veggies in a playful way. Peel an artichoke, eat her pumpkin soup with a straw (making funny noises), eat green beens with fingers as if they were martian fingers. She also loves quinoa salads with carrots, coriander and shallots, mushroom omelets, veggie lasagna "façon Nana" (mini pasta mixed with pees, carrots, broccoli and sour cream, baked with grated cheese).  

KEEP TRYING & MAKE THEM TRY
So I keep trying new stuff every day and I insist for her to try. The Green Eggs and Ham book by Dr. Seuss was really helpful. And it's ok if she doesn't like it or doesn't finish. Sautéed veggies now work pretty well: carrots, sweet potatoes, squash... Guacamole (or hummus) with carrot sticks or cucumbers is always a success. And my famous zucchini soup prepared with laughing cow also works very well!
It's also not because kids don't like something the first time that we need to give up. Taste is evolving constantly and they might like it the second or third time. While she always refused to eat green beans, the other day we had lunch at this delicious Dim Sum place and she really enjoyed the sautéed garlic beens! 

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kids-dinner-menu

And to make these veggies look even nicer, play around with the beautifully designed Biobu sets by Ekobo. :) 

I hope this post will inspire you somehow and I'm looking forward to reading your own tips!

Ashley Fultz, founder of the Style Editrix and beautiful mom-to-be

Ashley with her little bump wear an Ingrid and Isabel striped dress

Do you enjoy being pregnant? How do you feel? 
Pregnancy has been such a blessing. I haven’t had the easiest time with round-the-clock sickness the first trimester (thank goodness for anti-nausea medicine) and now in my final trimester I have experienced some numbness in my feet and back pain, but I wouldn’t trade the experience for the world. I know I am a lucky girl to have gotten pregnant so quickly and to have a healthy baby so far.

How do you plan to balance (or try to balance) your life as a professional blogger, wife and mom? Will you get any help?
Balancing blogging, motherhood and being a good wife is something I think about daily. I know it will be a struggle, but at the same time I am confident once our little man arrives, we will figure it out. I still plan to blog soon after he is born and will just determine how much help I need in order to get it all done. I am so lucky because my mom will be moving in with us for the first two months to help me adjust to life as a mom and then she is moving nearby to continue to be a really hands-on grandma!

What’s your “me” time? 
I love “me” time! Whether it is an hour a night watching one of my favorite reality shows, getting a manicure or reading a book on my iphone, I have a lot of it now and hope to carve out me time still once baby arrives with the help of my husband and mom.

Do you have any beauty tips you could share with us? Especially while being pregnant, what’s your favorite product you couldn’t live without?
I love trying new beauty products and luckily being a blogger I pretty much have tried everything from La Mer to BioOil. I have been really dry during pregnancy, so I love using face oil, Sonya Dakar and Goldfaden MD make great ones, and then I also swear by Murad Firm and Tone Serum and Shiffa Pregnancy Oil to help your body stay moisturized and hopefully avoid stretch marks.

Did you read any book about becoming a mom? Are you getting ready in any other way? Or do you just trust your instinct?
I have read so much preparing for baby. Two great books I highly recommend are Bringing Up Bebe and Cherish the First Six Weeks. I also constantly check the Baby Center app on my phone and joined a mommy forum on Facebook where moms post questions and articles about things they are experiencing or questions they have – it’s all very helpful!

As a future mom, what are the most important things you’d wish to transmit to your baby?
I want my baby to be smart, happy and confident. I want him to feel surrounded by love and support and know that the world is his oyster. I also want to make sure he is well-mannered and a communicative strong man who respects women! I have high hopes for him!

Because being pregnant can be challenging sometimes and because we all have bad days, what do you do when you loose it? 
I have definitely had those days during pregnancy when I feel scared and overwhelmed. I am all about crying it out and talking to my husband and mom. I have a big support system thank goodness.

How does your perfect nursery look like? What are your must-haves? Do you have any favorite brands? 
We have been working on the nursery for the last month or so and I am so excited to see it all come together. I love nurseries that are gender-neutral, elegant and cozy. I want it to feel very warm and inviting. I love the Delta Furniture (crib and glider), gold accents and the super cute bow tie decals I got from Tinyfrenchy! I also love the little animal prints from The Animal Print shop. So cute!

ashley-the-style-editrix-pregnant-style

Extra Questions (because I’m very curious ☺)

Do you have any pregnancy cravings?
I had a lot of cravings my first trimester including sweets and candy and carbs! It gained a lot of weight pretty quickly lol! Thank goodness that is gone now.

What’s your favorite pregnancy outfit right now? Any favorite designer?
I love Ingrid and Isabel for maternity clothes and you can also find amazing designers and your favorite skinny jeans at A Pea in the Pod – AG was my favorite before and during pregnancy.

Did you pick a name already? Would you give us a little hint? ;)
We have picked a name and it is one from Sex and The City! I don’t know anyone in real life with his name and I am very happy about that!

 

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A magical story to soothe your crying baby at night

Bonjour!

Since my little Félix has been having difficult nights lately, I wanted to share with you a magical story to help your crying baby (and yourself!).

 
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Tested and approved! It’s actually a famous NLP technique that I learned from my mother-in-law. In France we would call it a “remède de grand-mère” or an old home-remedy.

 If your baby often cries and doesn’t sleep well at night and once you’re sure that baby isn’t sick, here is a little experience worth trying.

 Make up an animal family without using any familiar animal (like your pet). Once chosen, always keep the same animal. Let’s take the lion for example: daddy lion, mommy lion and baby lion.

 
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Put yourself in an observer’s shoes who would watch what’s happening in that family from above and who would tell a story as some kind of giant.

1st step:

For 3 or 4 days, at bedtime, tell baby the story of the lion family.

"This morning, mommy lion woke baby lion up. Daddy lion had a shower. Mommy lion changed baby lion’s diaper. Baby lion cried. Mommy lion dressed baby lion. Baby lion cried. Mommy lion woke baby lion’s little sister up. Baby lion’s little sister got dressed. Mommy lion fixed breakfast. Baby lion cried. And so on…Daddy lion dropped baby lion at the daycare…And so on….

 Describe the day of baby lion and his family mentioning each time baby lion cried. Just tell the facts, only what you see, only what you hear. Don’t give any interpretation such as “baby lion cried because of this or that”. Never say “I” neither the baby’s name nor any name of the family members.

 Repeat that every evening for 3 or 4 days.

 Second step:

On the fourth or fifth day, tell again the story of the day mentioning all the times that baby lion cried. Only facts. You can say “Mommy lion laughed or cried but you don’t say “mommy lion is sad” because the giant who’s watching from above only tells what he says and hears.

Finish by: But why is baby lion crying non stop like this? What does baby lion see his head? What’s in baby lion’s heart? Put into words the fact that mommy lion is asking herself some questions while naming them. Tell the strict truth. 

Because Mommy Lion is really fed up! (don't forget that sentence). 

And of course, enjoy the soft and soothing melodies of our lovely music boxes in baby's bedtime routine! (playing cool melodies like Fly me to the moon, I just called to say I love you, Somewhere over the rainbow and more...)

That’s it! Good luck and let me know if it works.

Sleep well! 
xx

Back to school and back to you!

 
 

Bonjour!

Well I can't believe we're mid-september already.  Fall is around the corner and Summer already feels really far.

You didn't hear much from me lately for different reasons. First, I took a break to spend some precious (and too rare) family time in Europe by the beautiful Mediterranean sea. We celebrated my parents 50th wedding anniversary, beautiful isn't it? I wish that we all reach the same milestone! 

I've also been preparing for the coming months while attending the Maison & Objet Paris show early September where I had the chance to meet fantastic designers. I knew some of them already, met others whom I already heard about and discovered new ones along with their new collections. And most importantly I selected beautiful creations that you will be able to discover soon :)

Being back in LA feels so good. We miss our friends and family of course but I'm using all the great memories from this summer to fill me up with a good energy and motivation for this new chapter of the year. Come on!

I'm happy to share with you some exciting projects. Tinyfrenchy is now part of the collaborative platform French Wink promoting French creations in the US which I invite you to discover. As part of it, Tinyfrenchy will be present at Best of France in NYC on September 26th and 27th. With over 200 exhibits and hundreds of thousands of visitors expected in Times Square it's a must-go if you're in the area. 

Stay tuned for more updates and product discoveries!

xx
Amélie

PS: to celebrate this "Back to school" month, I'm happy to offer you free continental U.S shipping with the code "SWEETSEPTEMBER" (valid until Sept 30th).

For the Love of Wood

I hope you're having a great summer. You might be enjoying your holidays feet in the sand, or you're may be hiking in the mountains or worse you're still sitting at your desk, here is a nice discovery I recently made that I wanted to share with you.  
 
THE PARIS MUSHROOMS by Briki Vroom Vroom

 
 

Say hello to this cute Mushroom family made of Alder wood. Each little piece required a great woodcraft combining precision and the love of wood. 

Because each wood is so specific, I wanted to tell you a little bit more about this one. Although classified as a hardwood, alder is one of the softest of all hardwoods ranking just above pine. It has a light brown color with subtle grain patterns that are straighter than other hardwoods, such as oak or ash. 

All mushrooms have then been hand-painted with soft pastel colors to brighten up any room and fit perfectly on any shelf. I hope you will appreciate their very simple and refined design as much as I do. 

Did you know that in China, the mushroom symbolizes long life, happiness and rebirth? :)
Which color combination do you prefer? 

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My top 3 French baby-care products

When people ask me which French stores I miss the most, it can sound weird but I spontaneously reply the pharmacy! And I'm not kidding...

If you're planning to travel to France, a pharmacy is a must-go (and I know I'm not the only addict here). You'll be more than surprised. Nothing to do with our regular CVS, Walgreens or Rite-Aid. A French pharmacy is a little paradise where you can always find great treasures. Not talking about your doctor's prescriptions, you need to look at all other products that are available "over the counter". And as a mum of 2 little blondies aged 3.5 and 1.5, my favorites are definitely the baby-care products. 

So here are my TOP 3 FRENCH BABY-CARE PRODUCTS:

The Mitosyl: THE cream to heal any diaper rash. It's a classic for all French moms that has been in every nursery and diaper bag for more than 70 years. Made with cod liver oil (rich in vitamins A and D) and zinc oxide, its strange smell might surprise you but don't worry, you'll get used to it. It has strong absorbent and astringent properties, which confers a protective and soothing action on any irritated skin and it's white texture can easily be wiped of your hands with a baby wipe. Super efficient, it's available in different sizes and also comes as wipes (perfect on the go). You must try it!

 
The most efficient French baby diaper cream

The most efficient French baby diaper cream

 

The Liniment Oléo-calcaire: this more and more famous secret is a must-have in your diaper change kit! Coming from south of France, this fantastic and 100% natural product is made of olive oil and limewater (calcium solution). To be applied with a cotton or by itself, it doesn't need to be rinsed. It's a perfect alternative to baby wipes which contain chemicals and are not environment friendly. Beyond diaper change, it can also be used as a moisturizer (body and face) and a make-up remover. It can apparently be easily homemade but I must tell you I never tried...Also available in single doses.

 
A 100% natural product for diaper change

A 100% natural product for diaper change

 

The Sérum Physiologique: also called "le sérum phy" it is a simple saline solution (equivalent of the famous "Simply Saline" product) but it's single dose format makes it really special. It is another must-have for your daily baby care. With a cotton, you use it to clean baby's eyes, ears and nose. When your baby gets a cold (and please don't tell me it never happens!), it's really important to efficiently blow his nose and this product works perfectly to avoid ear infections and bronchiolitis as much as possible. Your baby needs to lay down on his back and you should turn his head to the side. Put paper tissus under his cheek. Pour a dose of serum phy in the upper nostril and the liquid should come out from the bottom one. Your baby won't like it but keep calm and resist. Remind it's for his best! Wipe his nose, turn your baby's head to the other and repeat this operation with the other nostril. Super convenient to carry everywhere with it's compact size, it's also a great product for adults. 

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Here is a short French video that will show you the nose-blowing process (it will help you practicing your French :). 

 
 

So if you're not planning a trip to France soon, remember to ask your family or relatives who might be going to bring you back these products as a perfect French souvenir!

Bonne journée!
Amélie

 

The Matryoshka Musical Doll: an inspiring story!

To celebrate the launch of Tinyfrenchy's newsletter, I told a story that will also be the first blog's post! :)

THE MUSICAL MATRYOSHKA DOLL by Barnabé aime le café

 
 

A few years ago, the talented Anne Giniaux, future founder of the brand Barnabé aime le café, sat in her room in Toulouse, France and hand crafted two Matryosha dolls with Liberty fabrics (similar to the one pictured above). She gave them both to her best friend's daughters.

They absolutely loved them!

Anne's friend had a brilliant idea: "Have you thought of making music boxes with awesome songs? Your dolls are amazing, and every music box I've seen has 
sh...y melodies."
No offense but at that time, all music boxes had very traditional and classical melodies. 


Lucky for us, Anne wasn't a mom yet, and took her friend's word for it :). 

The Musical Matryoshka doll was born.

With cool melodies such as Hey Jude by the Beatles, La Javanaise by Serge Gainsbourg, Somewhere over the rainbow, it quickly became a must-have in all nurseries.

My takeaway? Be open, listen to your friends, be inspired by your kids and be creative!

Take a look at 
Tinyfrenchy's Music Box collection and please share it with your friends if you see anything they would like. (TIP: You can listen to each melody on each product page) 

Don't miss the next stories and sign up to our newsletter here

Have a lovely day!
Amélie

A symbol of strength and kindness

Too cute to be true. This week, let's celebrate the 1st Anniversary of Mr. Indian Panda. 

THE INDIAN PANDA by Minimel

 
 

Combining her passion for black and white with her taste for the indian spirit, the Indian panda quickly became the lucky charm of Mélanie, one of our beloved designers. 
His sweet look is really touching while his Indian feather crown makes him brave and strong to protect its tribe. Being both a teddybear and a valiant warrior, the Indian panda appeals to all generations as a great symbol for peace and animal protection. 

Inspiring tranquil strength, determination and kindness, the Panda is renowned to bring good luck, and positive outlook on life.

So who's better than Mr. Indian Panda to watch over our babies and kids? 


As a wall trophy, poster or pillow, just fall for it and please don't forget to share it with your friends :)  

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Have a wonderful week!
Amélie