Oh Joy

going with the flow (it's hard to do)... 29 Jul 2015

Oh Joy

I am a serious planner. Like, I need to know what's happening every day and have a plan in place for every single scenario. In some ways, it's always made me the responsible one—in my friendships, in my relationships, in my business, and as a parent. But being someone who lives and breathes by a schedule, it also makes me really resistant to change and really bad with just going with the flow. When I'm given a change to my usual routine, I shudder and push it away. I fight so hard not to let anything new or different in...until someone convinces me, encourages me, and pushes me to just go with it. And then, I'm always glad I did. But, boy is it hard. I dream of being one of those laid back girls in those romantic comedies who starts a food fight while making breakfast or shows up at the airport and then jets off to some random destination.

Are you guys more of the planner type like me or do you just roll with it?

{Photo by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy. My top by J.Crew, skirt from Anthropologie.}

happy friday + 9 months with coco! 24 Jul 2015

Oh Joy / Coco is 9 months!

Baby #2 hit me like a truck. Not the baby herself, but the addition of a baby. It was way harder to go from one to two kids than I expected, but we're finally at a good place (most of the time). Coco is a happy, kind, and inquisitive baby. And she's so (SO) patient while her older sister goes through her terrible 3's of tantrums and meltdowns (um, yeah, three is no joke). In the last few months, Coco's true personality has really started to shine through. She says "mama" and "dada" and laughs the hardest with Ruby. Here's a look at the last 9 months...

Oh Joy / Coco's Monthly Photo

Oh Joy / Ruby and Coco

We love you, Coconut. I can't believe one is just around the corner! Have a great weekend, guys!

And p.s. thank you for your Seattle suggestions!

{Mini pinata numbers by Katie K. Franklin. Coco's Outfits - 1 MonthBoden onesie, Thief & Bandit leggings, 2 MonthsRylee & Cru onesie, Little Hip Squeaks headband, Freshly Picked moccasins, 3 MonthsLittle Hip Squeaks onesie, Thief & Bandit headband, 4 Months: headband by Thief & Bandit, top and pants from TargetFreshly Picked moccasins, 5 Months: full outfit by Ultra Violet Kids6 Months: top by Ultra Violet Kids, bloomers by House of Mia, hair clip by Pitchoun, blanket by Aden & Anais, 7 months: tanks by Kira Kids, shorts by Ultra Violet, blanket by Little Auggie, 8 months: tank by Thief & Bandit, bloomers by Noe & Zoe, blanket by Virginia Johnson, 9 months: romper by Sweet Threads, blanket by blanket by Aden & Anais.}   

i actually just like exclamation points! 23 Jul 2015

Oh Joy Flowers

Lately, I've been coming across these business articles that claim there are some words you should never use—especially at work or when it comes to making business deals—and how women often use these words way more than men. When I read these articles, I it makes me realize how much I actually (see?!?) use these words, but the reasons as to why we use them and when we shouldn't are so interesting...

"actually" - By saying the word "actually" in excess, it's saying that you are clarifying something that doesn't need clarification. For example, "I actually did see the market report." I can see how there's no need for the word "actually" there, and you could just say "I saw the market report." Plain and simple.

"just" - I do this all the time. Usually in an apologetic manner, I send emails saying "I just wanted to check in on my last email." Or, "I just have to go over there for 5 minutes." By using the word "just" we are apologizing in advance for something we're about to do. It's been shown that women use the word way more than men do. Ever since I read the article, I have been removing "just" from all my emails before I hit send and using it only when it's really needed. (I'm still working on cutting it out during business phone calls.)

the exclamation point - One time, while Bob was driving, he asked me to send a text for him to one of his colleagues. He told me to say "Good job". In my mind, I heard that as "Good job!" so I texted exactly that (with an exclamation mark). After I sent it, and he realized I had included the exclamation mark, we debated for 10 minutes why I thought it should be there and why he didn't think it should. My thought was that if you are telling someone something positive, the exclamation mark echoes your feelings. Just to say it with a period at the end sounds too dry and serious over text. His response was that the message was positive and he doesn't have to exclaim loudly "Good job!!!". I guess I'll never see his point on this one, and I will happily continue to use exclamation points when I think it's necessary. (Also, Bob no longer lets me send texts for him.)

What do you guys think? Do you guys use (and overuse) these words or marks like I do?

{Photo by Casey Brodley}

happy friday + the today show! 10 Jul 2015

Oh Joy / Today Show!

You guys...a couple weeks ago Jenna Bush Hager came to our studio to interview me for a segment on the Today Show on women in business. The episode is airing on Monday morning on NBC (in the 8 o'clock hour), so I hope you'll check it out!

I hope you have a great weekend! I'm taking Ruby to her first hip hop class so I can't wait to see her shake her little booty in class ;)

{Photo by Casey Brodley}

have a great long weekend! 2 Jul 2015

Oh Joy Party Animals

Do you ever feel like your life is just flashing before your eyes like I feel this second as I write this post wondering how it got to be July already?!

I'm excited for this long weekend (because one of my favorite things in life is a three day weekend), pool time with the kids at a friend's house, eating random "holiday weekend" type foods, and just resting my brain a bit (or trying to, at least).

I hope you all have a fun and safe weekend, you party animals! I'll see you back here on Monday ;)

{Photo by Casey Brodley, styling by Julia Wester. Oh Joy Band-Aids available here.}

why i’ll miss being pregnant... 29 Jun 2015

Oh Joy Maternity Photo

As Coco inches towards a year old, I've recently realized that I'm actually kind of sad to be moving on from the pregnancy and baby phase of my life. Bob and I always planned we'd have two kids, and our family feels perfect with two (and no I'm not changing my mind and having another). But lately I have been really missing the days of being pregnant. It feels crazy to me that I am saying that because those times aren't always so fun. In my first pregnancy, I had terrible nausea (I probably threw up 40 times) and got gallstones so bad that had to have my gallbladder removed when Ruby was 5 weeks old. And then in my last pregnancy, I was placed on bed rest for early contractions and got gestational diabetes!

But when you know it's your last kid, it really feels like I'm closing a chapter on one part of my life. And because I didn't expect to feel this way (and maybe some of you know how I'm feeling?), I finally just sat down and thought about the reasons why I'll miss being pregnant...

1. My self-confidence was always its highest when pregnant. It was the only time in my life that I wasn't self-conscious about my body at all and felt more beautiful than ever.

2. It's a time that you can just trust nature to do its thing and let your body do the job of growing a baby. There is no other thing in life where a task is being completed while you are eating/working/sleeping/watching a movie. But a baby can be grown in your body at the same time as doing all those things (and more). 

3. People are just nicer to you. Men open doors for you. Other women look at you with kind and compassionate faces. People offer to help you carry heavy packages. There is just a kindness that comes to you from strangers that is incomparable.

4. The feeling of a baby moving around inside your belly. It was always my favorite thing ever. My friends always joked that I rubbed my belly all the time. But to me it was just me wanting to feel that little babe do her thing with her little butt or foot pushing and pressing. And it was that feeling that constantly reminded me of what was happening inside.

5. Childbirth. Okay, so before you call me crazy and close your browser, I am not saying I like childbirth. I've had one baby with no epidural and one baby with one, so I know how childbirth feels in a couple different ways. And while it's crazy and painful and all kinds of stuff that people never tell you, it gives you a newfound respect for yourself that you even went through it. It's like, "Holy crap. I just made a human and now this human is coming out of my body." You feel tired and beat up, but you make it through it in one piece with the best prize ever.

As I say farewell to my baby-making days, I am looking forward to the next phase of seeing my kids grow and experiencing all the new phases of life that come with each age. And for now I will just live vicariously through all those other pregnant ladies out there. Just warning you...if I see you on the street and you happen to pregnant, I might even be one of those creepy strangers that rubs your belly without asking ;)

{Photo by Rachel Cast, styling by Tori Hendrix, hair and makeup by Erica Beukelman, and florals by Siren Floral Co.. Lace dress from Dreamers and Lovers. See my other maternity photos right here.}

happy friday + seeing patterns... 26 Jun 2015

Oh Joy Pattern Play Striped Car

Happy Friday guys! We've been in heavy design mode over here working on some new products for next year. With patterns and colors swirling around in my head even more than usual, we put together this fun image. I can't wait to tell you guys what we're working on! Ahhhh!

Are there any Oh Joy products you're hoping to see next?

I hope you have a great weekend, guys!

{Creative Direction by Joy Cho, photos by Casey Brodley, production and styling by Julia Wester. Toy car is vintage that was painted. Striped paper by Rifle paper Co.

happy friday + long weekend getaways... 22 May 2015

Oh Joy Family / Palm Springs

Around this time of year, everyone starts planning their summer vacations, and I keep getting asked, "Where are you guys going on vacation this summer?" And my answer is...no where! It's not that I don't want to take a vacation, but you guys, I am really bad at taking vacations. I wish I could shut my brain off, relax, and just enjoy a two-week long vacation away somewhere. But being away from the routine of my life is really hard for me. I've been to Paris, Mexico, and London in the last few years, but this year I am all about the mini vacation and just taking some long weekends away.

After our weekend getaway to Palm Springs recently, I realized that just a few days away somewhere not too far away gives me just the right amount of time to re-charge, and I can keep my computer at home and just enjoy being somewhere new with my family.

So, I need some suggestions! What are some fun places that we can go this year for a long weekend away that's either within a couple hours driving distance or a couple hours flying distance from LA? Any places you guy have been to and recommend? I'd love any and all of your suggestions!

Have a great (long) holiday weekend guys! If only every weekend, was a three day weekend!

making life a little easier... 15 May 2015

Oh Joy Kitchen

You guys know how I talked about not doing everything in this post? Since making dinner from scratch is one of those things that I can't always do (and stresses me to think about), I've found a few great dinner/food options that have made my life so much easier lately that I had to share with you...

1. There are lots of places that offer food take-out delivery. But when you just need lunch or dinner right now, this new DoorDash app is the most efficient one I've ever used. As soon as you load it based on your address, it tells you what restaurants you can have meals delivered from and the approximate time it would take. And the best part is it updates you every step of the way with when the order is placed, picked up and on the way to you. It's super accurate which I've never been able to say about any other service like this. I've used it way more times this week than I'd like to admit, but it's been so helpful when I'm home alone with both kids and can't manage to make dinner on my own (or when I want to treat my employees to milkshakes for an afternoon treat). It's kinda like the Uber for take-out delivery.

2. Instacart offers delivery from your favorite local grocery stores. It's sort of like Amazon Fresh but there are more options since someone is actually going to your local store (like Whole Foods) and picking out what you want. While I actually love grocery shopping (and can find it relaxing), it's not relaxing when you have to bring two kids with you. So I cut myself some slack and have groceries delivered when I don't have time to go myself. And, instead of loading everyone up in the car to go buy food, I can spend time with them doing way funner things and pay a small delivery fee for the groceries to come to me. 

3. Din is a newish food delivery service that sends you all the ingredients needed to make restaurant-inspired, home-cooked meals. Bob and I really want to cook more (we really do). I have tried a bunch of these types of services before. But other ones take almost an hour to make a meal, and these days with our busy jobs and schedules, we need to be able to make something within 30 mins or less. With Din, many of the components are pre-prepped for you—that way you really can make the whole meal from start to finish in 20-30 minutes. (They are only available for delivery in California and Nevada right now, but I'm guessing more states will become available as they grow).

And yes, these things do cost a little more money, but for me they're worth the few extra bucks for a delivery fee or service charge to gain that extra time at home with my kids. Modern conveniences like this have helped me to worry less about everything I need to do and be more present in the moment with my family.

Have you guys found any other cool apps or things like this that make your life a little easier?

{Photo of Oh Joy kitchen by Zeke Ruelas} 

happy friday + teee veee! 8 May 2015

Oh Joy on Access Hollywood

Happy Friday guys! Earlier this week, I did my first live national TV appearance on Access Hollywood Live! It was really fun getting to share some ideas from the Oh Joy book for Mother's Day. When I moved to LA five years ago, I had NO intentions whatsoever of doing anything on TV. In fact, the idea of being on camera made me nauseous. But if you know me, I need to constantly challenge myself to do the things that I'm kinda afraid to do...TV being one of them.

So, here I am...dipping my toes in the TV waters. It's a little intimidating doing these live shows—no re-takes, no do-overs, no editing out your slip-ups! I always worry I'm going to totally freeze and forget what to say, but then I just try and pretend the camera isn't there. Sometime there's a word flub or two, but usually it's not too bad. And, more than anything it's a fun new challenge. And, life isn't interesting if you're not challenging yourself, right?

I hope you have a great weekend! And Happy Mother's Day to you mamas out there! I'm going to the New Kids on the Block concert this weekend with some friends and reliving the early 90's ;)

{Photo by Casey Brodley}

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