Monday, June 30, 2008

Does Having Kids Make You Happier?

A Harvard professor of psychology, Daniel Gilbert, concluded that marital satisfaction "decreases dramatically after the birth of the first child and increases only when the last child left home." With the results of his study in his book "Stumbling on Happiness" makes us wonder if having children creates a miserable life. After reading the article in Newsweek, I asked myself if having my daughter altered my state of happiness.

I thought about all of the sleepless nights, not having a full night's sleep since she's been born, or even having to adjust my life now that she's born. After all of that, I can honestly say that I'm not miserable. But does she make me happy? Yes.

I look forward to seeing her everyday. I enjoy experiencing childhood again with all of the innocence and discovery. I'm excited about learning her personality and can't wait to see the woman she will eventually become. Perhaps, I feel this way because I'm a dreamy person by nature, but since she's been born I see the world differently.

Now that doesn't say the study is entirely incorrect, however, your response towards any life altering changes (i.e. children) heavily depends on your outlook. I make the choice to enjoy the ride of motherhood, no matter how messy and tiring it can be.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Bella Muse

I am always looking for interesting pieces for the nursery or clothing. This online store has the cutest prints and onesies. Check it out.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Knitted Toys

While pregnant in one of my nesting stages, I attempted to learn how to knit. The needles and the yarn have gone by the wayside, but I still appreciate knitted goods. They just feel so warm and personal compared to plastic toys. I bought my sweetie the lola rattle from Petunia Petunia shown above. Honestly, I think I love it more than she does at this point, but we'll see if she develops an interest in it as she gets older. I also have my eye on the knitted dolls and toys from Blabla. They're reasonably priced and possess a neat vintage quality.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

All Pinked Out

Once I found out I was having a baby girl, I kind of went pink crazy. Pink room, pink bedding, pink curtains, I even dreamed pink. On top of it all, I was also showered with a host of pink clothing, towels, hats, and booties. Now I'm fully maxed out. So, when I saw the patriotic theme clothing at Old Navy I let out a sigh of relief. The navy blue with a touch of red provided the right balance of femininity; while the swimming fish showcased a slight touch of whimsy. I finally saw my little bella glow in a color besides pink.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Quest for Post-Pregnancy Acne Treatment

After I delivered my sweetie, I traded in my pregnancy glow for a faceful of acne. Little did I know postnatal acne existed and that harsh facial cleansers can aggravate it further. So, in my naiveté I thought this breakout could be cured with some good ol’ microdermabrasion. After a couple of days looking of looking more like an adolescent than a twenty-something year old, I knew I had to change my beauty regimen.

My sister suggested Purpose, after all that’s what her teenaged daughter uses and it’s a rather mild soap. I used it for about three months with an Oil of Olay moisturizer. It cleared me up pretty okay, but it still didn’t give me that radiant skin. I missed the cleanser, toner, and moisturizer routine with the weekly mask. So, I looked further and after some careful consideration went for Aubrey Organics’ Blue Green Algae. I read the ingredients on the back of the container and for the most part it seemed like it would work. Come on, camomile oil, organic jojoba, aloe vera all sound like they would do the job.


It just simply didn’t work for me. My skin started to get patches of acne and never felt quite clean. Then, I decided to take it back to 2001, when I was first introduced o Kiehl’s. They stopped working for me in 2003, but I remembered how my skin used to respond graciously as I cleansed it with the Gentle Foaming Cleanser, then toned it with a mixed berry toner, and then moisturized it with a light sun block moisturizer. So, I got some samples of the Yerba Mate Tea Cleanser, Toner, and moisturizer from the nice lady at Nordstrom’s and pray that it would work.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Cocoa Babies

I got a chance to chat with the owner of the premier apparel line, Cocoa Babies. I first fell in love with the onesies last December. My favorite one has "All Because Two People Fell In Love" emblazoned across the front. I also like the one featured above. You can check out the extensive online catalogue at

Why did you start Cocoa Babies?

I had the idea to launch Cocoa Babies after seeing children in tee’s that were totally inappropriate. I started to look at the major retailers to see what they offered consumers and saw that there were few designs that had positive messages and none marketed specifically to children/teens of color. I started to develop designs that I felt were positive and age appropriate and it grew from there. The word of mouth started before we launched, I sent a few design mark ups out via email to a small group of close friends and before I knew it I had messages from complete strangers inquiring about orders and additional designs. After the feedback started coming in I knew that I needed to move forward with this.

What kind of products do you currently sell?

We currently have items for the entire family; this includes our onesies and bibs along with our children and adult tees. As we expanded we added items such as tote bags, note cards and gift baskets which have been popular with our customers.

What future plans do you have for Cocoa Babies?

I am currently working on a wholesale catalogue. I would love to see the line carried in stores by the end of the year. I am always listening to our customers; so, we are looking at adding products like diaper bags and baby blankets in the near future.

Where can individuals purchase your products?

Cocoa Babies is currently offered exclusively online through our website at

What challenges have you faced as a small business owner?

I am a small business owner who still has a 9-5; so, at times it’s hard to find balance, but it’s worth it in the end. Marketing is always something that you have to have in the back of your mind. I am always looking at ways to get the name and website out to the public, with a small budget that can be challenging at times.

What advice can you give to someone who would like to start their own business venture?

I would say do your research and realize that having a great idea isn’t enough. It’s important to understand that without a solid business plan your business has no foundation. You will need to do your research and surround yourself with people who can both challenge and support you especially in the beginning. The internet is a good resource that can link you immediately to information on launching a small business.