Style in the Heat: 5 Tips for Mama + Kids for the Backyard, Beach and Beyond

Welcome to the days of sun, sand, dribbly watermelon and popsicle faces, long warm days, and everything else that comes with Summer. Just remember to look into Central Oregon heating and cooling if you are yet to install a Central Oregon heating and cooling HVAC system. The best. Whether you head to the beach or pool or just hang out in your backyard, these days are meant to be enjoyed and memories made. It isn’t about all the things, it’s about filling up a pool- maybe inflating a floatie or two- and giving the kids a bucket and water as entertainment. Voila, unplugged childhood at it’s best.

This time of year, I can’t be outside with the kids enough. Grab the swimsuits/ Summer clothes, lob on the sunscreen and (half an hour later some days!) we’re outside for as much of the day as possible. We eat all 3 meals outside if I have it my way. We have a great table and I think it’s such a waste when we don’t use it! You can find similar tables via this link if you also need something sturdy and secure. I promise you’ll love eating outside! The kids come in for nap/bed time dirty, tired, and smelling of the sun and fresh air, it’s great. Sometimes, when the kids are in bed, I come back outside and sit at the table and just enjoy the last sunset. I loved the idea of sharing about one of our beach days for this post, but wrangling these two for photos requires more than this mama’s two arms. Speaking of the beach, it’s definitely worth checking out for some beach day fun inspiration! I figured a backyard shoot was in order, plus it’s where so much of Summer is spent as a family and I love that this wasn’t a super- styled photo shoot. Just me with the kids hanging out in the backyard getting up to shenanigans; some pretty cute moments were captured that will be getting printed and added to our gallery wall.

I had the chance to team up with a few of my favourite local brands to share some comfortable Summer styles (see some twinning mermaids below) and ideas to get you through the hottest season of the year. What was great about this backyard shoot is it doesn’t get any more laid- back than this. Well, as laid back as it gets with two kids running wild and loose. 😉 But that’s what Summer and childhood is about, and when you’re making memories, there’s nothing better. Comfort goes a long way this time of year and finding quality pieces that stand up to the elements and activities that come with Summer can make getting ready for a day spent outside that much easier. It doesn’t feel like that long ago that there weren’t so many cute choices for boys, but that’s changed in a big way and Liam loved hamming it up for the camera. I hope you like our Summer style picks- we’ve got some talented locals around here and they make it easy to dress for these hot days! All sources provided at the end of this post.

5 Summer Style Tips for Mama + Kids

1. Hats– More than a cute accessory, these help protect from the sun, and there are plenty of options out there for all members of the family. For littles, ones that have a strap for under the chin can help keep them from removing them, but as kids get older those styles can be harder to find. It took some getting used to, but Liam now wears a snap back (this Mahalo one is by Aloha Kai) . Even though this style doesn’t cover the back of the neck, it gives his face good coverage and I load on plenty of sunscreen anyways. Styles with adjustable straps also mean you can get a few seasons out of them and they’re great year- round. I like a variety of styles for myself, but my beach hat of choice this year is anything with a brim while I build up my tan for the season (see this post for a cute beach hat DIY).

2. Tops– The classic tee is hard to beat, but tank tops are a versatile option for days when it’s too hot even for a t- shirt and you don’t want anything on your shoulders (you know, those days when it feels too hot to wear anything). Perfect as a quick cover- up at the beach/ pool (buy a size up if you want them less- fitted for this purpose, and get an extra year out of them too) and a comfortable option to prevent chafing from seat belts and car seat straps. They’re a quick/ easy style option that you can throw on with any bottoms and double as great pj tops to wear to bed on hot Summer nights (ie those nights when the kids fall asleep in the car on the way home). As I was saying before about not having anything on your shoulders, you might want to look into getting a strapless bra or two, for those days it should be illegal for it to be that hot.

3. Cover ups– Whether you go for a maxi dress, skirt, or another option, a cover- up is a perfect extra layer when you’ve got a beachy breeze or want to layer- up for a Summer picnic. Hooded towels or over- sized tops are a great option- especially for kids- but if you want something to wear from the beach to the dinner table, something that’s comfortable and easy to slip on are two things I’m looking for. A comfortable top (again with the tank tops!) with a skirt work great and still allows you to move as you chase your monkeys kids around (this bright watermelon one is from Lone Wolf Boutique– see this post for another one of her styles perfect for Summer).

4. Swim suits– I don’t think I could write a post on beach/ pool/ Summer style without including this seasonal staple! When it comes to kids, you can find everything from UV- protecting styles to ones that are just plain cute, and everything in between. This is a time of year to have fun outdoors and you want everyone to be comfortable in the heat. Choose options that suit your lifestyle when it comes to shopping for both the kids and your own suits. I can’t resist a cute pair of swim shorts or a bikini for my two, but they also have fuller- coverage UV protecting styles for long days when the sun is scorching hot. And for Moms, I know the swim suit debate is a personal one. I love a 2- piece, but some days a 1- piece is the better choice based on our activities. And if you prefer more coverage there are plenty of stylish 1 and 2- piece suits out there. The 1- piece I’m wearing in this post is from All Twerk and No Pray and it’s my go- to 1- piece (also great paired with a skirt or shorts!). For a fuller- coverage 2- piece style, see this post.

5. Bottoms– When it comes time to pack up and head to the beach, shorts and skirts are essentials, but for cool Summer mornings and evenings, having comfortable pieces that provide more coverage from the shade and breeze are good to keep in mind for everyone. Comfortable leggings for all are a great choice and allow for plenty of running, swimming, and other movement. As the day warms up, simply swap for those shorts/ skirts, or swimsuits. For Moms, they’re a comfortable option that offers more coverage if you don’t love shorts (a capri- style is perfect if you don’t want to wear full- length ones in the heat) and can comfortably slip over a 1- piece or paired with a bikini top. Pick a pair made for yoga/ working out; the material will provide optimal comfort and movement in the heat. Two of my favourite local brands that combine quality, comfort, and style are Inner Fire and Kristina Benson Art (see this post and this post).

So there you have it. A few ideas to help get you and the kids through the Summer in comfort and style, and hopefully some new ideas to arm you for the hot days ahead. I’d love to hear what your essentials are for this time of year and your favourite Summer staples! Like these ideas? Or not? What would you change/ add?


‘Mahalo’ hat and Snow Cone tank- Aloha Kai | Instagram

‘Mermaid’ tanks- Little + Co | Instagram

Watermelon skirt- Lone Wolf Boutique | Instagram

Photo credit:

Akane Kondo Photo | Instagram

Kid Style: Pineapple #OOTD

When you buy your kids clothes what do you look for? Two of my criteria are comfort and cuteness (I’ve lost count how many times I catch myself wishing some of Ari’s clothes came in my size!). And with Summer only 2 weeks away, I’m loving all the vibrant colours and prints I’ve been seeing like this ensemble from Blink Kids. And let’s just be honest: I’m a sucker for anything with a pineapple or other cute design.
I met owner, Amanda, a few years ago when the blog wasn’t even a year old and her business has since grown along with her kids. Now that they’re out of the baby and toddler years, she’s been turning her talents to creating cute wears inspired by her own kids. The result are pieces that make both kids and Moms happy: they’re as cute as they are comfortable. And if you’ve got a little one who’s opinionated about what they wear, you know you need all the help you can get getting them out of their pjs (so cozy Mom!) and into their clothes (or as Amanda likes to call it, ‘something presentable’). Haha, just one of the arguments to be had in a day! 
Getting Ari to stand still for these photos was a challenge because all she wanted to do was JUMP, but the pineapple shirt was a hit with her and I love how soft and comfortable the fabrics are (cotton and bamboo). Definitely check out Blink Kids if you’re looking for some clothing options for your active youngsters (Amanda’s wear their Blink Kids pieces for yoga- how cool is that?).

About Blink Kids
Blink Kids is a modern, handmade kids fashion line offering up comfortable pieces perfect for everyday wear. With options for boys and girls, Blink Kids is all about creating new and exciting items including clothing and accessories. To learn more visit their website and find them on social media: Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest 

Feature Friday: Once Upon A Child Langley

     I have always loved consignment stores. I love that you can get such great deals on quality items- especially now as a parent when it comes to kid’s clothes & gear- since they often only use something for a short period of time. When I was growing up my Mum would give me the choice of where I wanted to shop for my clothes and I would often choose local consignment stores because I could find unique items and get way more bang for my buck. Fast forward 20+ years and I still love the fun challenge of seeing how far I can stretch my money when I need to pick up items for Ari. I’m a lover of our local kid’s swap meet and have discovered lots of other great ways to stock up on clothes for her, including today’s featured business, Once Upon A Child Langley. The store has a great selection of used clothes, toys, and gear, with some brand- new items.
      When I was pregnant with Ari I couldn’t resist going through the store and checking out everything they had knowing that I would soon have a little one. And even though we didn’t know what we were having I bought a few little goodies for when our baby arrived (I couldn’t help myself!). The staff have always been friendly and helpful and my friends and I have always been impressed with their selection. 
       Consigning is also a great option for parents when their kids have outgrown their clothes, toys, and gear; you can get some money for your used items that you can in turn use towards other things you need. If you’ve got a family or are planning one, Once Upon A Child Langley is a great place to check out. If you’re not already a fan, I bet you will be after this!
1.     What kind
of products and/ or services do you offer? 
offer a delightfully rare but efficient customer focused process buying and
selling kids experienced stuff for 50%-70% less then new retail stores. The
items we carry range from children’s equipment, décor, bedding, bikes &
Scooters, books,  toys, shoes, games,
puzzles and of course clothes and more. We also carry a large variety of new
products, plus new product that we are unable to sell experienced such as car
seats & boosters, jewelry, hair accessories, soothers & chew toys,
teddy’s, and much more. Big difference…….. we buy all seasons all the time, there
is no limits, no appointments needed, come in anytime that is convenient for
you. We process same day and for the items we would like to make an offer on we
present you an offer of in store credit with some extra baby bucks free or cash
on the spot. No hassle, no waiting for days or weeks, no contracts; fast and efficient.
2.     What is
the price point? 
      Clothing pending the brand ranges
from $1.50 – $10.50, we carry all brands, we stay trendy, we ensure the
clothing is in next to new condition, when you pull from our racks all the
buttons are there, zippers and snaps work. Equipment and toys have all the
parts and accessories, are thoroughly inspected, recall checked through health
Canada and we never retro fit. Safety is one of our main training models for
our certified buyers.
3.     How long
have you been operating and how did you start? 
are one of over 300 franchises, so knowledge, experience and training of 40
plus years is there. We were the first store to open in BC and are very proud
to lead the way for a great option to buy and sell kids stuff. We opened our
doors in October 2012 in Langley.
4.     How did
you decide what to do? 
      We have two children ages 6 &
4 and we always wanted a better option than the high prices of brand new for
something my kids might wear or use only once as they grow so fast. We looked
into many options of what is being offered out there, some hard work and
diligent research and found Once Upon A Child.
5.     What is
your favourite part of what you do? 
options of fantastic next to new kids stuff for 50%-70% less than new retail.
Providing our customers with and option, fast service and cash on the spot
makes everyone smile, plus being an essential part of our recycling era and a
part of the community. What is the biggest challenge? We buy & sell
children’s youth sizes 6 to 18/20 however those clothes sometimes get a little
more love then kids smaller sizes. We are always looking for more.
6.     Any advice
to other ladies/ moms looking to start their own business? 
      Always be prepared for a lot of hours and long days at your
business. However working for yourself is very rewarding at all levels.
If you’re still not convinced about how amazing OUAC Langley is, this should help: enter for a chance to win a $25 gift card to the store so you can stock up on all the goodies you need! Enter on our Contests page. Happy shopping!!!
To find out more about Once Upon A Child Langley check out their website & Facebook page.
Images courtesy of Once Upon A Child Langley
March posts sponsored by Cutie Pie Boutique

Feature Friday: Steveston Village Maternity

I remember when I was pregnant wondering how I would be able to dress in a way that was a) stylish and b) comfortable (by the end, that order of priority was reversed!). Figuring out a flattering pregnancy wardrobe can be frustrating and expensive. Then once that bump makes it debut, you have to nurture and raise it to the best of your ability. Finding clothes for you and your baby/ child and the supplies, gear, toys, etc necessary for them can be an undertaking. And often the selection becomes repetitive and/ or expensive as you shop around.
Rather than trying the standard retail fair, why not seek out a unique, local option? As you hopefully know by now, I’m big on supporting local, and today’s featured business is a husband and wife team offering a great selection of clothes (maternity wear and kid’s clothes ages 0- 5 years) and products for the kiddies in the family. I am so excited to feature Beth & Ben Fairchild and their store, Steveston Village Maternity.
I had the pleasure of speaking with Beth recently about the store, what they offer, and product trends. Make sure you check out the goodie up for grabs at the end of the post!

How did you get started?

While I was pregnant and then on my first mat leave I found there was a need for maternity wear; that there was something missing in the market. There were very few pieces that you could feel good about and like wearing.

How do you select the brands you carry?
We do a lot of research online, go to lots of trade shows, and through word of mouth. All of the brands and products we carry are ones that we love, otherwise we wouldn’t carry them.

What sets your store apart?

We get to know a lot of our customers when they’re pregnant and they continue to shop with us after they’ve had their baby. We spend a lot of time at the store, so we meet and develop relationships with our customers. We want our store to be somewhere people feel comfortable to bring their partners. Since my husband and I both work in the store, it’s nice for the men to have someone to talk with and relate to while the women shop. It’s nice to have a male perspective for the Dads, so they can be a part of the experience.

What are your top products/ best sellers?

For maternity, leggings are popular. It’s very important to us to support local, and we carry a brand made here in Vancouver, Au Fait Mama that’s really popular. Also nursing bras; Bravado and Bella Materna are big sellers. Otherwise, our maternity wear is seasonal, so what’s popular/ in demand changes throughout the year. For kid’s products, ergo carriers are really popular. Aiden and Anais (which is a very popular brand) make great dribble bibs and burp cloths. There’s also the Tea Collection, which uses a different country every year as inspiration for their products.

How have trends changed in the products you carry?

In terms of fashion, women are more proud to show off their bumps; they’re not as hidden. Maternity wear now tends to be more form- fitting and snugger than in the past. In kid’s fashion, the clothes have become way more edgy and more like adult fashion. And in terms of products, the quality, and how materials are used has changed. An example would be the Toofeze Teethers we carry. They’re made of silicon and have a stainless steel disc; they’re great because all you have to do is dunk them in ice water to chill the disc. They’re great for soothing soar gums at home or on the go.
I really enjoyed my conversation with Beth and love that her and her hubby are also business partners! I hope you go check out this gem of a family business- and tell them you heard about them here!

Remember the goodie I mentioned at the beginning of the post??? Beth & Ben have generously offered a $25 gift card to the store up for grabs! For contest details & how to enter, click here

Some of the cute goodies offered at Steveston Village Maternity

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE! Beth & Ben have generously offered a $25 gift card to the store up for grabs! For contest details & how to enter, click here

Images courtesy of Beth & Ben Fairchild, Steveston Village Maternity

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.