I’m Going to New Orleans for The Niche Mommy Conference!

image courtesy of The Niche Mommy

So you may have noticed a nice new button on the right hand side of the blog – yep, the one that says to lock your doors because I ma coming to New Orleans! I couldn’t be more excited about having won an all expenses paid trip to New Orleans at the end of the month to attend  The Niche Mommy Conference. I will be flying my way into Louisiana and staying at the Roosevelt New Orleans thanks to the generous sponsor of the competition I entered – EDEN BodyWorks! And if the wonderful folks at EDEN haven’t done enough – arranging my flights to suit and reminding me that flying out of LaGuardia would cause less stress than JFK – they also sent along the yummy smelling products you see below. The temple balm has been a bright spark in the past few days of blocked ears and sinuses. The peppermint and tea tree used in the shampoo is just divine. My scalp feels truly clean and smells so fresh. I’m looking forward to not only sharing my experience with you all when I return, but with them as well.



40 Years of Cookies Kids: Interview with a Founder’s Son

In 1972, a young man named Cookie and his brother Marvin went into business together. They rented a 1600 square foot store in Jamaica, Queens, fixed it up, bought inventory and Summer and Fall, and opened a day after Thanksgiving with a full stock of holiday toys. The toys were a success and they put the extra money toward buying children’s clothing for the next season. When that did well, they bought more clothing. The business was on it’s way.

As the brothers Cookie, Marvin and Sonny, who had come in as a third partner in the business, began to open new stores in new locations, inventory expanded. Besides the latest fashions, our customers wanted shoes, toys, backpacks and accessories and we were prepared to deliver.

By the late 1990’s there were six superstores throughout the NYC area, and though they previously had different names, by that time they were all named Cookie’s Kids. Also in the late ’90s came an important addition to Cookie’s Kids’ inventory: school uniforms. It was the steady success in uniform sales that paved the way for founding CookiesKids.com in 2007, which originally sold uniforms and soon after the entire Cookie’s Kids Inventory.

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At a time where stores are closing up shop all over the city, I met with the son of one of the founders of Cookies Kids to talk about their thriving business, both in their bricks and mortar department stores throughout New York and their unparalleled shopping experience online at CookiesKids.com

Besides the huge selection of quality clothes on offer, Cookies Kids is evolving and changing to continue to meet the needs of those that have kept them in business for 40 years.

This is my interview with Al Falack, one of the son’s of the original founders of Cookies Kids and one of the biggest champions behind the birth of CookiesKids.com in 2007. It’s an exciting time for this New York based business, read on to find out more about their beginnings, what they are up to now and how they see themselves in the future.

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Celebrate National S’mores Day On August 10

Last week at BlogHer I had the chance to relax my weary conference feet and cook up some s’mores around Camp Bondfire. Did you know that this Friday, August 10 is National S’mores Day? Hersheys partnered with Walmart to setup this chilled out room. All the furniture, accessories and tools were provided by Walmart and well, of course, the milk chocolate was provided by none other than Hershey.

Let me tell you this was one of my favorite Sponsor Suites at BlogHer ’12 as it felt like an outdoor getaway in the middle of a busy conference. It was nice to put up my feet, and burn cook up a marshmallow. Even though I didn’t camp much as a child, I did much more in my 20’s with my then boyfriend (now husband) and with friends. It always made for good times – conversations and laughter around the campfire or the glow of a flashlight.

Do you have memories of bonding around the campfire?

Here are 4 Fab recipes on Pinterest inspired by National S’mores Day. Enjoy!



Celebrate National S’mores Day On August 10 (via PR Newswire)

HERSHEY, Pa., Aug. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — National S’mores Day is August 10, and there is no better way to celebrate the occasion than to gather around the bonfire with friends and family to make the classic summer treat! Made from the delicious combination of pure Hershey’s® milk chocolate, crisp…



Nursing Bra Basics: Fit and Be Fitted

Earlier this week I had the pleasure of taking a sneak peek at Leading Lady’s 2012/2013 range of nursing bras and camis – new designs and styles, as well as their longstanding favorites among nursing mamas. I had a really good conversation with their Director of Design Haidee about fit and how to make sure you have that all important lift – it’s good for your posture and even better for your breast health.

I’m looking forward to sharing some photos with you next week about their innovative designs, but in the meantime take advantage of this fantastic offer that Leading Lady is running for the rest of World Breastfeeding Week – save 20% off nursing bras and free shipping!



What I Wish I Knew About Breastfeeding Before I Started

Today is the first day of World Breastfeeding Week. I consider myself lucky  to have been able to breastfeed both of my children. Though this was my choice, I also choose not to question people who do not breastfeed. After all, you never know what is happening in someone else’s world. Mothers sometimes do not breastfeed by choice, for medical reasons and for so many others reasons that they are entitled to. All I wish for every mama is that they are able to love and nurture their child.

Though I did breastfeed, with my son had terrible reflux which made me hate breastfeeding in public. I was embarassed when he chucked all over friends’ couches and carpets. And felt powerless when he cried after every feed and strangers wondered why I didn’t soothe him – I couldn’t! I got over it, but it was a big barrier for a first time mama.

Breastfeeding is natural, but it doesn’t mean it’s easy.

Ghada, Mama goes BAM

And with my daughter, we struggled at the beginning with her gaining weight and me assuring the doctors that I was in fact producing enough milk, she just needed the time to grow as a baby who arrived earth side 3.5 weeks early. This is Isla’s story of returning to the hospital by ambulance just 2 weeks after she was born and our worst nightmare and struggles with the hospital.

I asked some of my blogging buddies what they Wish They Knew About Breastfeeding Before They Started, and here is what they said. These are some clever ladies. 



Wordless Wednesday: Future Olympic Gymnast?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012, New York –  The Little Gym teams up with Soles4Souls to create Big Hearts, Little Shoes, an initiative to help spread shoes and love around the globe.  (Photo by Diane Bondareff)



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KiwiCanadian expat adventures with my husband and 2 kids from life in New Zealand to New York and back again. Adventures in inspired family living, travel, health & fitness.Read More »