Oh Joy

happy friday + baby things...20 Mar 2015

Oh Joy / Coco sleeping

Every day I revel in the fact that I'm able to love another tiny human as much as I love my first. I really didn't think it was possible. And then it just happened. And here we are five months later with a baby who is more than a newborn and slowly growing into who she'll become.

Coco so much more easy going than Ruby. I heard that second babies are more laid back because they have no choice but to be (did you guys find that to be true?). Ruby will be on the ground in meltdown mode while Coco is smiling and cooing away. She started sleeping through the night last week, so I'm thrilled to have my full night of sleep back and feeling a little less loopy these days!

Lately, I've been sharing more of my personal photo and videos on Instagram, but today I had to end the week with this video of my little Coco (who is 5 months old today!) learning how to smile and interact and just figuring out this whole life thing. Don't you just want to raspberry that chubby little belly? Ahhhh!

Have a great weekend guys!

{Top photo by Oh Bob}

fruity lips...19 Mar 2015

Homemade Tinted Lip Balm Using Natural Ingredients

It's not drugs, it's not alcohol, but there is one thing I've been addicted to for much of my adult life...lip balm! So when our beauty guru, Danielle, mentioned that she makes her own tinted lip balm from all-natural ingredients, I was intrigued. Here's how...

Homemade Tinted Lip Balm Using Natural Ingredients

You'll need these supplies:

-1 double boiler (or) a 12oz pyrex measuring cup and medium sauce pan
- 1 fine mesh strainer (we used a mesh tea ball)
- 0.5 oz lip balm jars (we used these)
- coconut oil
- cosmetic grade beeswax pellets
- beet powder
- freeze dried raspberries
- tangerine oil (for flavor/aroma)

If you want to make a small batch enough to fill 2 -3 containers, you can follow these portions:

- 1-2 tablespoons coconut oil
- ½ tablespoon ground freeze dried raspberries or beet powder (add more if you want a stronger color)
- ½ - 1 teaspoon beeswax (more for a firmer consistency)
- 3 drops of tangerine oil

Homemade Tinted Lip Balm Using Natural Ingredients

Here's how:

1. Grind raspberries/beet powder in coffee grinder until you have a very fine powder.

2. Melt the coconut oil and beeswax over low heat. Once the two are completely melted together, stir in the finely ground raspberries/beet powder. Add more powder for a richer color. Stir the mixture non-stop for about 3 minutes. Add 3 drops tangerine oil. 

3. Using your strainer pour mixture into your containers (this removes any grit from the finished balm).

4. Place lid on the jar and put in freezer to help solidify. They only need about 10 minutes in the freezer until they’re completely solidified.

A few tips:

As the balm cools it will solidify and the powder will start to settle at the bottom. In order to prevent this, I recommend putting your empty containers in the freezer before you’re ready to pour in the mixture. This way, the mixture will solidify faster and there is less time for it to separate. You’ll have to move quickly, so I recommend getting everything laid out in order of the process.

It has a subtle berry color as shown on me above. What do you guys think? Would you make your own lip balm? I think this could be a fun thing to make in large batches and give as gifts for sure!

{Photos by Casey Brodley and styling by Julia Wester for Oh Joy. Lip Balm recipe by Danielle Walch}

career day / a kid's clothing designer...18 Mar 2015

Ultra Violet Kids

I love getting to expose my kids to so many cool jobs that exist out there. Whether it's through my community of entrepreneurial friends that I surround myself with or the people I get to meet through my job, I always enjoying showing how anyone can create a job for themselves from scratch.

Inspired by that notion, I want to start sharing with you some of the people that I'm lucky enough to come across. People that have cool jobs—jobs that aren't typical, and jobs that come from a true love of what they do. It's like career day at school but with a twist! 

Ultra Violet Kids

Ultra Violet Kids

Today, I'm sharing a peek into the world of a kid's fashion designer, Michelle Chaplin of Ultra Violet Kids. I came across Michelle's clothing last month and instantly wished the clothes she made came in my size. They're edgy yet comfortable and combine bite-sized pieces with great prints (I mean, that mini crop top?!? I can't even...). Here's a look at her Los Angeles studio and a few fun facts...

Ultra Violet Kids

What did you think you wanted to be when you grew up? I have always known I wanted to be a fashion designer.

Ultra Violet Kids

What’s your background and when/why did you start Ultra Violet? For the past 15 years, I have been working as a women's contemporary designer. I have worked for other companies making their visions come to life as well as having my brand, Smoke & Mirrors, with Emily Harteau of Our Open Road.

When my daughter, Violet, was born I was happily unemployed and started a little Etsy store selling vintage kids clothing. For Violet's birthday, I made her a crop top and harem pants out of African fabric. All of my friends loved it, so that's when the light bulb in my head went on. I secured my domain, started branding, picked up my first account, and that was the beginning of Ultra Violet Kids.

Ultra Violet Kids

When did you know you had something good? I knew I had something special when customers started buying the clothing, giving me positive feedback, and when press and stores started contacting me. Instagram has been so crucial in the growth and awareness of Ultra Violet Kids. I get to see all the pictures of kids wearing their clothing, and it makes me extremely proud. My mom jokes that I always said I wanted to clothe the world but I didn't say what size.

Ultra Violet Kids

Best part about your job? The best part of my job is designing and creating fashion.

Worst part about your job? The hardest part of my job is managing production.

Ultra Violet Kids

Style muse? My daughter Violet is my muse and inspiration.

Ultra Violet Kids

What do you hope the brand will become someday? I dream of being able to grow the company, giving back, and expanding into women's again. But right now I'm happy with growing it organically. I hope that Ultra Violet Kids becomes a recognized brand that you can always count on for fashion forward, quality clothing that's made in the USA. 

Favorite ice cream? I love ice cream! Gold Medal Ribbon and Almond Fig Gelato are my favorites.

Thanks so much Michelle for this look into your world!

{Photos by Casey Brodley for Oh Joy except the two photos of the kids by Lauren Moore for Ultra Violet Kids} 

a crafty family trip {giveaway} to palm springs! (now closed)17 Mar 2015

Crafting Community in Palm Springs

Crafting Community in Palm Springs

As Ruby gets older and engages in more creative play and art projects, I'm always on the look out for fun ways we can spend time together as a family while expanding her imagination. Crafting Community hosts a once-a-year weekend-long event in Palm Springs, CA where families gather together for a few days for crafting, food, sunshine, pool time, and a while lot of family fun. I've been wanting to go for years, and this year we're finally going!

So today, we've partnered with Crafting Community to give away a family package to come to the annual crafting retreat (at the Ace Hotel Palm Springs from May 1-3, 2015) to one lucky reader and their family. The package is worth $1800 and includes:

- (2) night stay (accommodations, resort fees + taxes)

- (2) days of art workshops (more than 20!) led by renowned artists

- (2) days of recreation activities led by professional instructors

- All food and beverages

- A custom Crafting Community tote filled with premium goodies!

- Sunrise yoga + complimentary bike rentals + game night

- Unlimited pool access and a ton more fun activities (see the full list right here!)

Crafting Community in Palm Springs

Crafting Community in Palm Springs

Here are a few photos from last year's event. It makes me super excited to take my family this year! 

To enter the giveaway, simply visit Crafting Community's website and then leave a comment here telling me what you'd be most excited to do at this year's event in Palm Springs (pool time, making things with your kids, getting some sunshine, etc!). Entries close this Friday, March 20th at 11:59pm PST* and one winner will be chosen at random! 

Good luck!

UPDATE: Congrats to Ashley F. from Los Angeles, CA for being our winner this time!

P.S. Crafting Community is also offering a special reader discount of $100 off any package. Use JOY100 when booking.

*Open to readers anywhere but travel to Palm Springs, CA is not included. Please do not leave your email or web address in the body of the comment, only in the allotted boxes. $1800 USD total value for a package for a family of 3. Any additional person (over 2 years old) is an additional flat fee of $275. Winner will be contacted by email once comments close, and announced at the bottom of this post soon after.

{Photos by Crafting Community} 

in the mirror...16 Mar 2015

Giant Photo Booth Photos

The other day, Ruby wanted to play dress-up and asked me for a princess dress to wear (yes, the dreaded princess phase has started!). Since we don't have any play dress-up clothes, I pulled out a flower girl dress that was sitting in the back of her closet that she had never seen before. Her eyes lit up as I helped her put it on. She immediately walked over to the mirror and stared at herself for a good five minutes. She didn't know I was listening, and I overheard her saying...

Continue reading " in the mirror... " »

dressing the babe / i'm blushing...13 Mar 2015

Oh Joy / Dressing the Babe

You don't know how happy it makes me that spring is on it's way! While I really can't complain about our weather, this extra hour of light we've had this week really makes such a difference. I feel like I get more hang time with my kids, and we're all feeling a bit sunnier in general.

Here's my take on a that romantic shade of blush that feels light and lovely and perfect for spring...

Oh Joy / Mama Style

I like making this very romantic color a little edgier with a bit of a bootie and some denim...

Mama outfit / 1. Darccy dress (similar), 2. Madewell denim vest, 3. Vintage turtle necklace (similar), 4. Vintage scarf (similar), 5. Loeffler Randall booties (similar).

Oh Joy / Toddler Style

And, vintage scarves are starting to be a favorite accessory for my mini as well...

Babe outfit /  6. Lucca Valentine for Pausch romper (their new collection launches tomorrow!), 7. Target tee (similar), 8. vintage scarf (similar), 9. Pons sandals, 10. bunny by Hazel Village.

Oh Joy / Dressing the Babe

Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May (uh, I mean March!).

{Photos by Casey Brodley, outfit styling by Joy Cho, flat styling by Julia Wester. Ruby is almost 3.5 years old and like to recite Shakespeare ;P} 

oh joy for solly!12 Mar 2015

Oh Joy for Solly Baby wrap

I'm excited to announce our newest product collaboration—an Oh Joy for Solly Baby wrap! I'm definitely an on-the-go mom especially after having Coco because it's not always possible to be home for all her naps when we're trying to keep Ruby busy at the same time.

Solly Baby wraps have been a favorite to use especially during the early months before your babe can face outwards in a more structured carrier. Coco loves to cozy right up to me when she's ready for a nap, and I can have her close while being hands-free and available to be there for Ruby as well.

So, I'm thrilled to be launching their first ever designer wrap with a new floral pattern perfect for spring!

Oh Joy for Solly Baby wrap

When deciding what to design for this wrap, I wanted it to be a pattern you'd want to wear as a fun spring or summer dress. So we designed this abstract floral with accents of mint green, aqua, neon lemon yellow, and hits of grey. It's fun, bright, and says "hello spring!".

Oh Joy for Solly / Dolly wrap

And, the new Oh Joy wrap is available for mini me's too! The new Solly Dolly wraps for your little ones give them a way to wear their dolls and stuffed animals and pretend to be mini mamas on-the-go.

These wraps are one of my favorite gifts to give a new mom-to-be, and I hope you guys like it! The wraps are now available for pre-order right here!

P.S. You can use the code SPRINGFORSOLLY to receive 10% off all adult-sized wraps till Friday.

{Photos by Max Wanger for Solly Baby}

ah! it's here!11 Mar 2015


The other day we received actual, live copies of the new Oh Joy book that comes out April 7th! This book has been a labor of love for me and my whole team so it was exciting (and nerve-wracking!) to see the baby we all made together in-person finally!

Oh Joy Book

And...you can still get our very cute and secretive pre-order bonus gift by filling out this form!

Find the book at these retailers: Amazon | Target | iTunes | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Indiebound | Booksamillion | Google Play | Harper Collins

bite-sized sibling style!10 Mar 2015

Tips on Coordinating Sibling Outfits for Photos!

Tips on Coordinating Sibling Outfits for Photos!

I have to admit, as the mom of two girls it can get pretty fun dressing them up both separately and together. When it comes time to take monthly photos for our youngest, we also like capturing the two of them together so we can look back at how they grew over the years.

When you're picking clothes for your kids for a monthly photo or for family/holiday portraits, it's easy to buy two sizes of the same outfit and have them match exactly. But it's way more fun and unique for their outfits to coordinate rather than match (in the same way that siblings might look like each other without being identical twins). 

Press play below to see our newest Kids' Style video above for a handful of fun sibling outfits for spring... 

And, here are a few tips for coordinating sibling outfits for family or special occasion photos...

1. Make sure they are wearing pieces of the same season. While they don't need to be wearing the same types of pieces (both in dresses or both in pants), make sure both kids look like they're both dressed for spring, summer, winter, etc.

2. Have their colors coordinate without being too matchy-matchy. Especially if you're picking outfits for photos, have a general color palette your working with (neutrals, bright colors, pink and green, etc.) and pick clothing that has accents of those colors. For example, if you want to bring hot pink into the outfits, pick pieces for each child that has hot pink but still select different outfits for each.

3. Just have fun with it! Kids clothes are so much more fun than grown-up clothes so you don't have to make these too serious or stoic. Kids grow up so fast, and preserving memories by taking monthly or yearly photos will be something you'll look back and treasure forever. Pick an easy and comfortable location that your kids will have fun in, and snap away!

You can see all outfit details below...

Continue reading " bite-sized sibling style! " »

in a {hair} rut! 9 Mar 2015

Oh Joy Giant Flower

Hair is such a funny thing to me. Some people can change their hair cut, hair color, and general hair vibe every month. And some people (like me) can have the same old hair style for years. My hair is that comfy pair of shoes that you wear every single day. I don't think much about it, I just go with it. But it's way boring which is why I've been playing around with ways to do new 'do's.

With my post-baby hair shedding and just a general feeling that I need a change, I think it's time for a legit hair cut! And not just my usual "Oh, just trim off a couple inches" thing. Something new. The last time I made a major change was when I brought back my bangs about five years ago. I'm pretty sure those bangs are staying, but I want to change up the rest of it. Shorter? A lob? Some color? Some wave? I feel like options are limited with my super straight thick hair but I'm trying to be open-minded.

Here are five inspiration photos I'm loving...

wavy lob with bangs

1. I love the slight wave and the angle to this cut. It seems flirty yet not-too-perfect. Plus, her eyeliner is on point! (via Brit)

Cute cut!

2. A shorter, layered bob that might help make me look cool and French. This might be too short for my face shape, but it sure does look cute on her! (via Forum)

Lauren Conrad

3. Lots of layers and texture like LC. (via Kristen Ess)

Emma Stone

4. Emma Stone's straight and sleek lob with long layers (via Huffington Post).

Gary Pepper

5. A super short bob with some beautiful, full waves. (via Gary Pepper)

What do you guys think? Any other styles I should check out?

{All photos credited above. Wallpaper in top image by Juju Papers.}


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