This is officially my first blog post. I have been meaning to write one for a while, but honestly, I was feeling nervous. Nervous that my thoughts may not come out right, that my words might get misinterpreted, nervous of the judgement. I was nervous that no one would care or read what I write. And, bottom line, I don't really have a LOVE for writing. However, I DO enjoy talking! And I rely on my communicative abilities to make a living. So, I’ve decided to take a stab at it and just think of this as "just a chat".
You may already know a little about me from the "about us" section of our store. I’m a seasoned fitness trainer with 13+ years of managing fitness communities and training clients. So, when I say I talk for a living, it's true. I spend most hours of the day encouragingly talking, shouting, and instructing personal training clients and group exercise classes. And while fitness has long been my first passion, nothing has been more rewarding, enjoyable, or exhausting as being a mom! I have a two-year-old daughter (Olivia) and a three-month-old son (Logan), and YES that's where our store name came from, O & Lo.
Have I lost your attention yet?! I'm guessing most of you reading this are mothers. So, you can probably relate when I say that I love being a mom, but I am sure there is a little voice inside you saying, this lady is full of s**t. We do this because we have to, and we gave birth to tiny humans (who we love), but no one looooooves being a mom. It comes with SO many joys, but a whole lot of baggage on top of that. Before becoming a mother, I didn't really know what sleep deprivation was and who/what it can turn you into (a clumsy, road raged, zombie who no one wants to talk to, because they never know what will come flying out of your mouth). I didn't know how demanding breastfeeding was (and not to mention how difficult). I didn't realize how much a baby changes your relationship with your partner and how lonely that first year can be. I did not anticipate the slow start to getting my body back (and that it's a new body altogether, not the one I had before making a human). And even after so many obstacles, emotions and difficult decisions, the incredible journey it is to be a parent! These are all topics I am hoping to tackle, and I plan on sharing my personal experience with things that seemed to help me along the way. I am just beginning a new journey as I am now a mother of two. My son is already completely different than my daughter. While I have so much more confidence now as a mom, after making my fair share of mistakes with Olivia, I still know that I’m in for many more surprises with Logan! I’ll be asking for the advice of other mom bloggers who are willing to share their experience and I would welcome visitors to share comments and their stories as well!
- Parenting was so much easier when I raised my non-existent children hypothetically.
At the end of the day, even though we have never met, we (moms) are a community, a friggin' strong one at that! And the support is incredible when we put ourselves out there! I know this because when I read other mom's stories, I feel the power, the respect, the empathy, the understanding and (most of all) the strength of mothers today. We’re living in a different time and so being a mother means something different now than it did 40 years ago. So, for that reason, I share. I share my new venture with you, O&Lo.
O&Lo is a collection of things that I found amazing or helpful while raising Olivia. All the apparel lines are handpicked, because they are the highest quality I can find. They are ethically made and so damn adorable! Functionality is super important, because we all know our kids don't just eat with forks and knives, or carefully walk slowly around puddles and large rocks. They dance, jump, fall and spill things all over themselves ;) There's also a lot I've discovered later on from other moms or parents that I'm hoping to try this time around with Logan. Did you know that there are mould free bath toys?! Yup, great teething and bath toys made by Oli and Carol. I had no idea about that with Olivia, so we accumulated a bunch of now mouldy, gunky rubber duckies and bath toys.
Also, we're based in Toronto and are proudly Canadian. So, we make a concerted effort to find the very best baby and toddler products AND we do everything we possibly can to support and sell Canadian Brands. Our “Canadian” collection includes a range of brands that are Canadian Made or Canadian Owned products. In many cases, the Canadian brands we carry are owned by local moms and family-run businesses. That said, there are some truly wonderful products that are owned or made outside of Canada, so we carry those too!
Hope to have another chat soon!