#BossBirch Volume 3

So our #BossBirch this month is the lovely Tessa Garcia Consejo, founder and designer of MACCS the Label, a very popular line in our shop!

I have yet to meet Tessa in person but just take one peruse of her IG page and you’ll be immediately smitten, she’s friggin adorable!

Her pieces are super feminine and flirty without being overly boho which seems to be flooding the market these days. I’m partial to the Kate Jumpsuit….seriously guys it looks really good on me. 

 

What is your mirror mantra?

Never give up. My husband is the most encouraging person in my life and he has drilled it into my brain to, no matter what, never give up. Being an entrepreneur is draining, and taxing, and full of stress, and there are times where I have wanted to throw it all away, but I am so glad I never did, and I am able to push through to see all the good, and happiness, and joy, and pride that comes with being a business owner. 

What’s your guilty pleasure music choice?

Rap. I can literally spit Lil Wayne lyrics like nobodies business LOL

What is your favorite Canadian-ism?

I think just how friendly we are. I always love when I'm travelling and seeing peoples faces light up when I tell them I'm from Canada!

What has been your biggest business learning curve?

Since delving into manufacturing it has definitely been how long things take! They always take much longer than anticipated so I'm still trying to figure out planning well in advance. I think also just dealing with the market in general and figuring out how to adapt when things start to switch. The market is super saturated and it's important to evolve and think of ways to further your business and learn to change with the market if that makes sense. 

What makes you laugh till you snort?

My husband! He is seriously so funny and makes me laugh everyday. 

What book do you love so much you could read it over and over again?

I recently read me before you and fell in love with it. Although I still have yet to read the last page because I could tell where it was going and my heart couldn't handle it haha. 

Name a fellow Canadian BossBirch who you admire

Well Sierra of course! Honestly it takes SO much to be a business owner, more than anyone will ever think or know. I have so much respect for anyone pushing the boundaries and pursuing their dreams. Both my husband and I are entrepreneurs and don't get me wrong, there are amazing, blissful, on top of the world days, but there are also dark, gloomy, no light at the end of the tunnel days, and it takes guts to wake up and face the world head on every single day. 

 

 

Tessa, thank you so much for contributing! My husband owns a restaurant so we're also double entrepreneurs in our house! I have a couple requests for you and the hubs....please bring his churro biz to the Okanagan and please IG story yourself spittin along with Lil Wayne!!!

XO

S

 

#ChoosyBirch

So the store has been open for just over and year and a half now and I’ve definitely made a lot of mistakes, some much more costly than others. The learning curve on owning your own business is yuge, what works in my home town of Terrace or in Calgary, “the maker mecca” of Canada, may not work in Vernon. And just because a line does incredibly well in larger cities and is super popular on social media doesn’t mean the ladies walking down the street to their doctors appt. are going to give a shit. “Kaitlyn Bristowe wore this on her snap chat last week” doesn’t register for a lot of people. So I’ve really had to drown out the voices and opinions around me and go with my gut and follow my instinct. 

I’ve spent thousands, yes thousands on lines that didn’t work in the shop. 

There are a few lines in particular that I get asked regularly if I will bring in and I usually say “yes, I’m planning on it but haven’t placed an order yet” then when I sit down at my computer to place an order I walk away without hitting send or minimize it and never look at it again. I’m just now realizing that’s my gut telling me I don’t feel right about having these pieces in my shop. Kaitlyn will attest that I have a very clear image of how I want the store to look and feel and any time I stray from my gut the vision is muddled. 

Here’s an example, there’s a successful clothing line that has cheeky sayings on it, I made a small order with them once but have not ordered since. They’re a great company and I actually have a lot of respect for the owners of this company and definitely look up to them as business women. But they have this one t-shirt that says something that leaves an awful taste in my mouth, it has since day 1. I won’t say what it is because then you’ll be able to figure it out and I’ll get black listed in Canadian retail! 

Whenever I order lines I also think of my daughter at all times, a lot of our clientele are younger girls and I would hate if my daughter came home with a t-shirt that said something derogatory about a specific group of people. 

That being said she can always wear a shirt that says Fuck, all day, erry day. 

 

 

And while we’re on the topic of my daughter, why do girls clothes change so drastically as soon as they’ve outgrown size 6?? She goes from pretty flower tops and stripes to velour joggers that say “BRAT” on the ass? If it were up to me she’d wear denim overalls and high tops till she’s 28!

Fuck I hope I’m a cool mom……

So the point of all of this is I’ve decided to start carrying more socially conscious lines. I’ve just placed an order with BeHuman, and I’ve had these ideas for a smart kids line for over a year and I’m going to pursue it for Stella’s sake. 

 

I will still carry the all your favorite lines that are staples in the shop, I’m just going to try to be a little smarter about future orders. 

And don’t worry Birches I will never stop carrying lines that love the word Fuck as much as I do!

XO

S

BTS of BHA CDN150

In case any of you are not aware….this year is Canada’s 150th birthday. And with the world being what it is today (mass bombings....everywhere! People being shot and killed in the streets, don’t get me started on climate change, oh and an ignorant unqualified Cheeto is running what most would consider the most powerful country in the world!) I feel more inclined to celebrate how friggin lucky we are more than ever! So in honor of this beautiful country we launched our CDN150 line last week. I know, I know, everybody is doing a CDN150 line….but ours is the best.

So I came up with the design, my graphic designer Lisa brought it to digital life and we finally found the perfect red sweater, ordered custom tags and delivered them to the screen printer!

But then came the fun part, the promo photo shoot.

 

I had a very specific feeling and vibe for this line. My inspiration was the song "Wheat Kings" by The Tragically Hip, one of the greatest Canadian bands of all time (also happens to be my OG bestie, Jocelyn’s favorite song) it opens with the sound of loons on the lake so we HAD to find a cabin for these pics, obvi. Due to licensing there was no way I could afford to actually use that song, so I poured over songs I could use for hours to find the perfect song! I wanted to launch the line for June 1st but we were already into the third week of May so it was crunch time. Then we heard threw a friend about Beaver Lake Mtn. Resort, I called immediately and managed to score a dope cabin on the water with it’s own dock. I spent the next week planning the shots we needed with our photographer, Amanda Wallace of Amanda W Photography, collecting props and convincing friends and family to come hang out at a beautiful cabin for a couple days, tough sell, I know.

So the weekend arrived and it was kind of amazing, the weather was so gorgeous, Gerran, Stella and I headed out early to get settled and explore than I drove back into town to pick up my Hype Girl and Amanda. 

Once we got there we started with pics of just Kaitlyn and I in the really large oversized sweaters just hanging out on the dock, it took a few minutes for us to relax but turns out we’re naturals in front of the camera!

We got amazing shots of Kaitlyn hiking thru the woods and Stella just being Stella curled up on the dock in my vintage Hudson’s Bay blanket (they’re my favorite of all the pics).  Stella and I hanging out in the log cabin, Gerran and Jeremy roasting marshmallows with Stella around the camp fire, Gerran and I in the canoe. I mean this couldn’t have been more Canadian if Bryan Adams followed us around while signing an acoustic version of “Summer of ’69" (have you ever wondered what Jimmy’s up to??).  

 

So we banged it out in less than 24 hours and I’ll admit I was nervous to see the final product. I could have hired models but I wanted this to feel cozy and familiar so I insisted we use ourselves as the models which clearly we are not so I was worried my Ork side would show in the all the pics, or Kaitlyn’s Vigo side would be front and centre. But after a few days Amanda emailed me the first draft of the video and holy jesus, I couldn’t have been happier or more relieved. It’s exactly what I had envisioned. 

Amanda did a brilliant job!

My favorite review of the video was Angelic from Centowear, she said “It made me want to go camping”. We hit the nail on the head!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=En5qLBgdr6U&sns=em

So here it is loves….enjoy the video and come on down to the shop to get your own limited edition Birch Hill Apparel CDN150 sweater or tee!

xo

S

 

16 Candles....plus 20

FYI, I’m 36….some may say I look 40 other angels here on earth have told me I look younger but I just turned 36 today actually. So naturally I lord the “I’m older, wiser and more worldly than you” card over Kaitlyn’s head any chance I get. One of my favorite topics, turning 27. 

Something awful happens in your late 20’s and in my experience it’s most peoples 27th year.

Your hair just isn’t as shiny anymore, your skin not as dewey and almost looks dull, you certainly can’t rally from a hangover like you use to, and your body….well that bitch can’t snap back quite so quickly anymore.

Kaitlyn is experiencing this all first hand this year as she turns 28 in August (August 28th to be exact, but don’t worry she’ll let everybody know with a full blown main street parade, sky writing plane, and I’m sure she’s trying her hardest to get Mr. Trudeau to declare it a Canadian holiday). But I digress….the first indication you’re 20’s are dying a slow death is your inability to bounce back from a night of drinking. When my husband and I first started dating we would drink and party almost every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night (we quit drinking completely when we had our daughter 5 years ago). One night I even drank 11 appletinis….there’s like 3 ounces of alcohol in one appletini so do the math…I should probably have had my stomach pumped but no I woke up the next day took a couple Advil liquigels, inhaled a McDonalds 2 cheeseburger meal and drove around to all the local pubs and bars to help my friend find her purse after first finding her as she woke up not knowing where she was (terribly responsible of us I know). If I drank that much now….jesus, we would need to call a priest for an exorcism. 

And what’s up with the hair and skin situation? You wake up on your 27th birthday and your skin is like “remember all those years of not wearing sunscreen and never drinking water?? Well today is the day bitch…..payback”. I have always had great skin, I don’t mean to sound boastful because I know it was all genetics and I realized at a very young age that not having problems with pimples was something to be grateful for so I thought I was taking really good care of my skin. You know, NEVER going to bed with make up on, exfoliating regularly blah blah blah. But it’s the preventive matters for aging that I hadn’t quite figured out, so here I am at 36 getting botox and regular facials…..ya I said it, botox. And I don’t care, I’m not ashamed at all. I’m a grown ass woman who can spend her money how she wants. 

Then there’s our hair, my hair use to be so shiny and bouncy now it takes 4 different products, a curling iron, a straightener, velcro rollers and a shit ton of hairspray just to get that effortless “messy ponytail” look. And don’t get me started on the grey….I get my hair professionally died and less than 3 weeks later I look like Anderson Cooper. 

27 was definitely the worst year as far as feeling old and shit changing on me….until 36.

Here I sit on the evening of my 36th birthday and I’ll be honest, I didn’t handle it well.

I’ve never been the type of person to get sad or depressed on my birthday, it’s just another day. But this year for some reason, wow it hit me like a brick wall. I knew Kaitlyn would have planned something special at the shop for me so I was planning on being there as soon as we opened. BUT, after I got out of the shower I felt super emotional and sad. I just wanted to curl up in bed and go back to sleep…..WTF!!! This is so out of character for me, shit NEVER gets to me and when it does I’m pretty good at brushing it off. But no, you guys I even cried!!! I can’t explain it either, maybe it’s because I’m over the midway hump and am now officially closer to 40 than 30?? Maybe it’s because I promised this year would be the year I FINALLY get healthy and in shape and it’s halfway thru the year and I’m nowhere near my goal?? Maybe it’s because I spend all my time with a 27 year old so I just feel….old!

I have no idea, but seriously, all the feels guys.

But, I rallied….I got my shit together put on a cute outfit, neckerchief and all and got my ass to work.

And it was totally worth cos….presents.

XO

S

 

#FuckFastFashion

Ok guys, I have a real problem I want to address, I’m a clothes horse. My closet is always a disaster and since we’re renting we’re kinda stuck with the closet we currently have which is small for 2 grown ass people who appreciate fashion. Try not to be completely appalled by the pictures I’m including in this post. I’m also in impulse shopper, I don’t walk away from something and say “I’m just going to think about it” nope, not me, I buy it on the spot….maybe in 2 colours.

The problem is I end up purging my closet every season and getting rid of shit that still has tags on it!!!

I grew up in a trailer with my parents and 3 sisters, I think this is a big reason why I now feel the need to buy more STUFF. I didn’t have a lot growing up so I want more of everything, more clothes, more shoes, more gadgets, more make up, more books, more STUFF! So now I have a house full of crap I rarely even set eyes on because it’s packed away in Rubbermaid tubs. This past week Kaitlyn and I auctioned off our lightly used items that we have taken home from the store for charity. We get new stock in and we get super excited and take one home for ourselves, than we literally don’t have enough days in the week to get to wear that particular sweater we took home. All those items I auctioned off I don’t even miss, I couldn’t even name each one of them there were so many. But it felt so good to get rid of all that shit! Plus who knew it felt so good to raise money for a charity and help people!! But it all inspired me to spend more wisely.  

Next time you’re home on a Saturday night and you’ve already binge watched all of Friday Night Lights 3 times and need something interesting to watch I highly recommend “The True Cost” it’s a documentary about the fashion industry and something referred to as “fast fashion”. Fast fashion is essentially the industry pumping trendy clothes out so fast that we now have 52 “seasons” (1 per week) instead of 6 (Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, Holiday and Resort). This is why when you go to Forever 21 or Zara there’s always huge sale sections and sales racks because those styles were hot last week but are now “out”.  So you feel like you’re constantly needing to purchase more to stay “in style”. These big box stores (Zara, H&M, TOP SHOP, Forever 21 etc.) especially target girls in their 20’s because you ladies are more susceptible to buy into all that social media bullshit and you aren’t making very much money so you love these chains stores where you can get a whole outfit for $30. In my day those stores were Smart Set, Le Chateau, Mariposa etc. 

I’ve been reading a lot about capsule wardrobes lately, this is such a foreign idea to me. Why have 1 black sweatshirt when you can have 7??? A capsule wardrobe is basically a mini wardrobe made up of really versatile pieces that you absolutely love and that are good quality pieces. But I’m going to do more research and spend some time in my closet really going through my clothes deciding what I really love and need instead of what I want or hope to someday fit in to! I know I already have all those basic pieces, it’s just parting with all the other crap that i don’t need. If you’re considering trying this new approach follow @caroline_joy on IG, her blog is great too. She basically has a capsule wardrobe per season, because you’re not going to wear the same 30 pieces in Winter that you would in Summer. I feel like this is doable, no?? 30 pieces per season, if I really look into it I probably don’t wear 70% of my clothes. 

Now I’m not encouraging you to stop shopping all together I mean I own a clothing store for crying out loud. And I’m also not saying don’t shop at those big box stores altogether either (I just spent $100 at Superstore on my ever growing 5 year old). I’m suggesting maybe have a little balance….shop with intention perhaps. 

Plus shopping at little boutiques like mine, and Cento Wear or LBVLifestyle and Blonde in Kelowna makes such an impact on the lives of the people who own and work in these shops. 

Also, let us not forget that the owner of Zara is the 3rd richest person in the ENTIRE WORLD!!! He doesn’t need your money….but my kid will definitely need braces someday so spread the wealth yo.

XO

S

My Lovely Lady Lumps

Saturday evening I watched a documentary called Embrace on Netflix, I highly recommend you watch it too. It was a about a women, Taryn Brumfitt, who posted a side by side picture of herself on social media a few years ago. On the left she was in a glitzy bikini for a fitness competition, ripped. On the right she was completely naked sitting on a stool and she was no longer in “fitness competition” mode but she was definitely still beautiful. I remember when this photo first showed up all over social media, she did many interviews about it because people were up in arms over it. Either cheering her on embracing her natural beauty OR ripping her apart saying disgusting things about her….like really awful things. 

So she went on a journey to try to figure out why women are so hard on themselves. 

I’m not going to sit here and say I’m super confident and love my body just the way it is, I mean I avoid the amazing Okanagan beaches so I don’t have to be seen in a bathing suit. I hate summer time because it’s hot and my thighs rub together. I won’t take side profile pics of myself because of my double chin. I wear Spanx under simple white tee because my stomach hangs over my pants. Kaitlyn and I joke about wanting “thigh gaps” which we know is absurd, I mean I’m ALMOST 36 and she has a juicy booty so it’s definitely not in our future. Plus if I had a thigh gap my phone would fall into the toilet when I’m checking all my snaps while I poop. But there are some things I take a stand on, when Kaitlyn first came into our lives I had to tell her that we don’t use the word FAT in our house especially around Stella. It took her a while to remember not to say it but now she even scolds other people who say it. I tell Stella almost everyday how much I love her juicy thighs and little tummy. When she talks about another girls hair or pretty clothes I try to remind her what matters is her brain and her heart and her soul. 

But I’ll be honest I do wish I was in better shape. I don’t need to be stick skinny. I actually like the size I am but I wish I was healthier because I’m definitely not. First of all I’m weak, I get the light end of the box when we move shit at the shop. My endurance is awful, I get winded at the top of our stairs. And when I really think about it weight and image has been a major topic of conversation my entire life, I think it is for all women. As teenagers we share insane and incredibly unhealthy ways to lose weight. Starving yourself all day than chewing gum when you feel hungry, tried it but starving myself has never been an option, I just fucking love eating!! Purging, sadly I have quite a few friends who struggled with this as teenagers. I tried it once and could never actually make myself puke, turns out I’m an “emetophobe” I have an extreme phobia of vomiting….true story. Please don’t think I’m making light of these issues, I’m only being so blunt and honest about them because I know for a fact that well over half the ladies reading this have struggled with these illnesses or at least experimented with them. Probably more like 90% of the people reading this have and for some reason we don’t talk about it!! 

This past year and a half Kaitlyn has been working her butt off to lose 30 lbs. And I couldn’t be prouder of her because she did it the old fashioned way, eating healthy and excercising 3-5 times a week. No pills, no crazy diets, no fasting or cleanses just hard work and dedication. 

I on the other hand….

The idea of eating healthy is so foreign to me I literally snap chat Kaitlyn weekly saying “does this count as healthy??” I strongly believe that eating healthy is like being good with money, it’s not a skill you’re born with you have to be taught. I was taught neither growing up.

My favorite dish was fish sticks when I was a kid, like old school, literally shaped like a stick, fish sticks….with a shit ton of tartar sauce. Going out for dinner was McDonalds. We ate entire bags of Old Dutch BBQ and ketchup chips for breakfast on Saturday mornings while watching cartoons with huge A&W glasses of root beer….in the morning!!!! In the summer time my little sister and I would take those large glass measuring bowls with the spout and handle and use half a tub of vanilla ice cream to make huge milkshakes….daily! We ate No Name brandFruit Loops for breakfast every morning before school. (For the record Stella does not eat or drink like this at all. She’s never even had pop before except “ginger pop” when she has the stomach flu, but she does have a hankering for “treats” which is something we’re working on).

And on top of all of that we NEVER exercised! We joined every sport and dropped out a week later! My little sister played ball, my older sister played soccer, I played nothing….I was as a reader not an athlete. 

And now here I am at ALMOST 36 and I still haven’t figured out this healthy eating and exercise thing. The amount of garbage I can shovel into my mouth in one sitting and not feel sick is astounding. Kaitlyn says if she ate like me she’d be 400 lbs. In my 20’s that would be something I’m proud of but now that I have a daughter it’s something I worry about everyday.

Stella is not overweight by any means but she’s no willow branch like some of the little girls in her dance class. As soon as she’s finished her dinner every night she says “can I have a treat now?” So for my daughters sake I want to get fit and healthy. Not “rhinestone bikini posing on a stage with a fake spray tan” fit but “go for a hike with my family and not need a snack and an inhaler” fit. 

So we decided to do a little experiment. Starting May 1st I’m eating “clean” for 30 days. Last Sunday Kaitlyn came over and took all my measurements and helped me clean all the crap out of my cupboards. I’m basically following the Whole 30 plan, which requires a lot of planning. I’m one week in now and I feel pretty good. The first 3 days sucked because I had the worst headaches at night and was super nauseous. Saturday night I cheated for the first time, I made whole 30 brownies which were super bitter so we made homemade whip cream for Stella…..I slipped and added whip cream to mine as well. But I paid for it by nearly shitting myself an hour later. I also cheated yesterday when we made our first visit of the season to Davison’s and I had to have the blackberry frozen yogurt. 

And I’ll be completely transparent here, I’m still vain, I mean I have botox in my forehead!!! But I really want to instill in my daughter that it’s more about taking care of yourself and being healthy than being skinny and beautiful. 

I truly, truly hope I didn’t offend anybody in this post. I’m not an expert and I’m certainly the last person to take fitness or eating advice from. I’m just a woman and a mom trying not to fuck up my kid.

#BossBirch Volume 2

For those of you who don’t follow my Instagram, I’m a big Jillian Harris fan….Robyn, Megan and Kaitlyn may even say I’m her #1 fan. So the events that transpired last Monday were beyond the scope of things I thought possible. I won’t give the full back story because stats say lengthy blogs lose readers but the evening ended with her and I texting back and forth for a while even including really awful selfies of ourselves. 

But I will give you the BACK back story…which started almost 10 years ago….the following details she does not know and to be honest I’m a little embarrassed by them. 

It all started back in 2009 maybe 2008 when I was a real estate agent at Re/Max Coast Mountains in my hometown of Terrace, B.C. My closest friend in the office Rauchene Lansdell came in one day saying her friend “Jilly" was on the new season of The Bachelor, so of course I tuned in. Like most of the people in the world I was completely charmed by her sense of humor and realness. So of course I followed her career, from The Bachelorette to “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” to “Canada’s Handyman Challenge”, my husband owns a Browns Socialhouse here in Vernon so I knew about all her interior design work with Cactus and Browns from his restaurant connections. 

But here’s where it’s starts to get embarrassing, I use to make these large block letters with fabric mod podged onto them (Jesus Christ) stay with me here, I started making them as baby shower gifts but people really like them and started paying me for them. I found this really cute fabric with little brown anchors and pink hearts on them so I made a “J” with the anchor fabric for Jillian and a “J” with this really beautiful wood grain fabric for Justin. Mailed it to whatever address I found online, never heard anything back. 

Cut to a couple years later #TeamJilly posts something on her website about wanting new content contributors for her website, anything from recipes to DIY home decor to fashion, whatever your department of expertise is. I didn’t see this post till sometime in the afternoon on the last day they were taking submissions so as soon as the huz got home I handed him Stella who was only 7 or 8 months old at the time I think and got to work. I only had a few hours to whip something together and you could definitely tell! Keep in mind my craft skills at the time were more Christmas-craft-sale/wooden-clothespin-reindeer-esque than the flower crown making gold spray paint wielding Birch I am now. So ya, the project I submitted was pretty friggin amateur. I obviously didn’t hear anything back. 

I know where you think this story is heading, me feeling rejected dressed in head to toe camo going thru her garbage in the middle of the night with a headlamp….but I assure you this fable has a happy ending.

So here I am living in Vernon running my store with Kaitlyn by my side. I carry solely Canadian brands and I strongly felt Jillian, being a proud fellow Canadian, would appreciate what I’m trying to do so I tagged her in posts, invited her to our grand opening (thank god she didn’t come!!) Tweeted her regularly, Kaitlyn and I even brought a gift basket of #BirchMerch to Justin at the Vernon Boat Show last Spring (he was very sweet and lovely of course). I just put myself out there!! Completely transparent, no facade. 

When I added this special guest feature to the blog I wrote my dream list of women I would love to feature, ladies like Kelly Oxford, Marilyn Denis, Sarah Richardson and Tamara Taggart never ever imagining that the one person at the top of my list would be my second guest…..miss Jillian herself.

Yes Birches, I Captain Ahab’d the shit outta that 5’2 white whale!

So here it is……

 

-What is your mirror mantra? 

To keep doing the best that I can and not to put too much pressure on myself, one day at a time! Between being a new mama, my business, my family and friends ... making time for everything and everyone can be hard but I just have to keep on doing the best that I can!

-What’s your guilty pleasure music choice? 

COUNTRY COUNTRY COUNTRY!! I freakin love it!! 80’s country ! 

-What is your favorite Canadian-ism? 

Plaid. Enough said. Lol!

-What has been your biggest business learning curve? 

That you are NEVER going to please everyone and to learn to live with rejection and criticism. also, to take constructive criticism, think about it and think how applying it would affect your business? maybe a certain naysayer has something to say that can help- even if it seems negative at the time! its ok to be wrong! 

-What makes you laugh till you snort? 

Lately it's been little Leo! He's such a little character and I just love sitting there and watching his every move! Also at 36 years old, I still think farting is pretty funny.

-What book do you love so much you could read it over and over again? 

I hate to admit it but I can't even remember the last time I read a book!! Ok i lied, it was 50 shades of grey and i’m worried it wouldn’t be healthy to keep reading that over and over again! LOL 

-Name a fellow Canadian BossBirch who you admire? 

Fraiche Nutrition.  She is brave, kind, modest, beautiful, a great mother and dedicated to everything she commits to! 

There you have it Birches, and FYI Tori also happens to be on my list....I'm coming for you doll!

XO

S

 

Birches be hating

So this past weekend we got a hell of a lot of traffic on our IG stories because we felt the need to comment in defense of Jillian Harris’s IG story.

Here’s the back story……

Jillian posted to her IG stories visibly very upset over some comments other women had made on her blog posted titled “5 Steps to Becoming a Boss Mom". In the post she goes on to give advice on how to balance life and work after you have a baby….super helpful right?? Well she also mentioned a few of her favorite products in this post, namely Nike Air Max Thea Premium’s which she is also wearing in all the pics. Which I guess a lot of people thought was inappropriate, so they took to the comment section.

The comments were pretty scathing, one woman said she’s a sell out, another said she’s using Leo as a marketing tool (BTW don’t ever mention my child or my parenting skills….I will cut a bitch) they said her entire blog is motivated by her getting free shit. Some people commented on the fact that she pays all her friends to work for her, all the comments have since been taken down but I’m giving you the G rated Cliffs Notes…..these bitches were ruthless and cut throat in their comments.

Here’s what I gotta say about all of that!

First off the sell out comment….at the end of the day she’s a business woman people!!! If Nike called me tomorrow and said we’ll send you some free shoes if you mention them in your blog, you best believe I be sportin some friggin Nikes!!! I’d make Kaitlyn tattoo that shit on her forehead! Call me a sell out all you want but have you bought a pair of Nike’s recently??? They’re $170!!! And I should know because I own several pairs, so does my husband and my daughter in fact, we're a Nike family and proud of it......did I go too far??

Second, and probably the most disgusting, the amount of women commenting on her mothering skills. I have said a lot of shit in my life, as you can clearly tell Im very opinionated and have a big mouth but I DO NOT ever comment on other peoples parenting skills. You guys mom-ing is hard, like really hard. You stress about whether or not you’re doing a good job every second of every day so to have women who most of which don’t even have children go out of their way to tell you you’re doing a bad job??? I can’t imagine what an awful feeling that must be!!

Third, and the most comical to me, her friends working for her. I don’t see the problem here?? If I made enough money that I could pay my closest friends a great wage and work with them all day why wouldn’t I? Isn’t that the ultimate goal in life?? Wouldn’t that make going to work everyday awesome?? Kaitlyn (my shiny new bestie) taking care of online sales, Jocelyn (my OG bestie) running my accounting department, Robyn (sister bestie) baking me fucking cupcakes all day, Megan (fellow crafter and Gemini bestie) running my social media department, Cindy (ex roomie bestie) basically making sure I just don’t eat all the cupcake all day. We'd work hard and play hard and have fun doing it and gossip ALL FRIGGIN DAY!!! We vacation together because we can write it off as “research and development”.

And lastly what I find the most disturbing is that people were so “disgusted” by her post that they took the time out of their days to sit and write huge lengthy negative comments about her. If you don’t like what you read or see stop following!!! And why are we cutting each other down?? Do you know how much harder it is for women to be successful in business than men?? Did you know that only 36.5% of self employed people in Canada are women? ? Did you also know that globally 33% of firms have NO women at all in senior positions?? We have to work harder than men do to accomplish our goals. So one woman (Jillian) is out there killing the game and we have to cut her down?? We should be proud of our fellow Canadian! We should be cheering her on and taking pointers! God dam Birches be hating!

Anyways….in conclusion…..Nike, if you’re reading this I wear a size 8 and Kailtyn wears a size 8.5 and we’re both rather partial to the pink. And Jillian if you ever read my blog...call me 250-938-4890, actually no, just text me I hate when people call me especially from an unknown number. 

FOMO

I’m writing to you from my couch today, with a super shitty cold and nothing new to binge on Netflix. I’ve spent most of my day rotating between Twitter, Snapchat and IG to get Coachella updates from my favorite celebrities. Here’s the cold hard truth guys…..I have a serious case of FOMO.

This may sound shocking to most of the people reading who know me (let’s be honest the only people reading this are Kaitlyn and Robyn). The fact is I am not a festival girl!  hate dirt, I hate being hungry and the constant need to find food, I hate being exposed to sun of any kind, I don’t do drugs or drink, I don’t like large crowds of people, I certainly don’t camp, and the amount of money you’d have to pay me to use a port o potty is unthinkable. 

I sound like a ton of fun right. 

And then there’s the fashion, I am not a crochet girl, my thighs rub together too much to be a short cutoff jeans girl, I don’t think I’ve ever in my life owned anything tie dyed, I look ridiculous in ALL hats, I can’t pull off combat boots to save my life, (the more and more I write the more and more this sounds like the perfect place for Kaitlyn), I still haven’t lost the baby weight in my mid section even though my “baby” is 5 years old so crop tops are out of the question, I don’t think I’ve been in a bathing suit in public since the summer of 1997 when Stephanie Leach and I went to Penticton for the summer and I thought I was “fat” so those super lavish pool parties all the celebrities are at in their rented villas are out too, I spend way too much energy keeping on top of my grey hair to bother dying it pink or purple. Plus can we all acknowledge I would easily be one of the oldest people at Coachella!!!

Side note: Is there a music festival where loafers and button down shirts with cute jeans are the required attire?? Where I can simply nod my head with my legs crossed on a comfortable stool like the small town white girl I am while enjoying Kendrick and Lady Gaga?? Where waiters serve me my food at an actual table and the bathrooms are clean with scented hand cream and free tampons and plungers in all the stalls in case you happen to be the dickface who plugs it?? No....this festival doesn't exist yet....maybe I'll plan it myself.

Anyways, Kaitlyn and I went over all these details last week when we both rolled our eyes saying “get ready for all those obnoxious Coachella posts!” but then Saturday rolled around and all those same people posting were getting geared up to see Gaga perform her new single and Kendrick take the stage after he released a killer new album. I came into the shop and sheepishly admitted I’m super jelly I’m not there and Kaitlyn quickly admitted she feels the same way!!

And than I had a brilliant idea, you see we had a huge sale at the store on Good Friday and it was so successful we’ve decided to make it an annual event and we simply called it the Good Friday sale. But as I sat there looking at those girls dancing in their flowy skirts to Tove Lo showing off their wrist bands I thought “why don’t we have our own Coachella…..Birchella??” I instantly snapped Kaitlyn and we spent the next hour snapping back and forth ideas for next years sale and our outfits of course. 

So, this time next year we will have our huge blow out sale again but it will aptly be called Birchella…..we’re also getting our first Gypsy Soul order in this week so we’ll definitely be able to outfit you all for the event!

And remember, Birches in flower crowns get an additional 10% off their entire purchase!

 

 

"Fashion changes, style endures." -Coco Chanel

For those who don’t know, we’ve been working away on something exciting at Birch Hill Studio for some time now. This little project has been in the works since before Gerran and I even moved to Vernon in early 2015. Our own clothing line….Birch Hill Apparel.

We walked into this little project very naively thinking we could come up with an idea, print it on some sweaters and just watch the money roll in…..not so love.

First came the graphics, I had an idea but I strongly believe in hiring a professional, they’ll bring a completely fresh point of view to your idea. Plus I’m not terribly techy so taking my crappy drawing and turning it into something we can work with is beyond my capabilities. Enter Lisa, my sisters best friend. Simply put, she’s the tits. She has years of experience in graphic design from simple logo design (she designed my real estate logo years ago and is also the genius behind Birch Hill Studio’s logo) to major projects with the Winnipeg Museum of Art and now she works on her own from home. She gets emails from me weekly that start like this “I have an idea…” and she always humors me and creates something amazing. If you’re at all interested, contact me for her info. 

Next came the sweaters themselves. I have stacks of sweaters and t-shirt samples from every brand you can possibly imagine. I have been consistently ordering sweaters from different companies from all over the world for 2 straight years and we just recently finally found one we love. But here’s the kicker, we can’t get them without THEIR own tags sewn into them so we have to have these exact sweaters custom made by another company out of Toronto. So now we’re just waiting to have that company make us a sample to see if they were able to duplicate it. Seems like a lot of work for a sweater right?? The reason we’re being so picky is that people will come back and buy the same graphic on a sweater over and over again if they love that comfy cozy sweater. It has to be soft with a little stretch to it but still look cute with a pair of skinnies and your #BasicBirch white Adidas. But they also have to appeal to dudes, they can’t be too tight or narrow but they have to able to withstand the dryer because guys don’t hang shit to dry…..ever. 

So than came the screen printing…..here’s where a lot of time got wasted. Friends of ours in Terrace who own a shop called Ruins (check them out, it’s a rad shop that’s been around for almost 20 years) had all their own screen printing equipment. They used it to screen print everything from their own line to big jobs for major companies allover Terrace. But they decided to sell it. Gerran and I have always been into fashion so we decided to try our hands at this new venture which was the catalyst to Birch Hill Apparel. Once we set everything up in the back room of the store I put hours of blood sweat and tears into learning the craft with Kaitlyn by my side cheering my on. It’s not that difficult once you get a good rhythm going but it takes a lot of time, and with the store and the restaurant and a 5 year old it became pretty clear pretty quickly that I just don’t have time to take on this much work. 

We decided to contract out the screen printing, we found a local company and they do a really great job….we should have done this from the get go seriously.

 

So here we are 2 years later and the one small idea we had has evolved into 2 completely different clothing lines, one aimed at our wonderfully loyal #BasicBirches and one super rad unisex line for the whole family. We’re also launching a special #Canada150 line in honor of our beloved countries birthday this year!

I realize the blog isn’t terribly interesting this week but we’re so close to having the line ready to launch that I just wanted to give everybody a little peek BTS. 

So, my loves, stay tuned and get ready for something kind of amazing…..I get goose bumps just thinking about it!!

xo

S

#BossBirch Volume 1

So I’m trying something new for the blog.

I’m constantly feeling so inspired by fellow Canadian business women that I’ve decided to have a special feature on the blog once a month.

I’ll be featuring one female #BossBirch by asking them 6 simple questions and have them take a selfie in their element. Now my big project will be reaching out to all these amazing ladies hoping they’ll agree to be on the little blog that could.

My first guest is a gooder guys....Rachel Doell of Daily Routine Fitness.

I was first introduced to Rachel a few years ago via Jillian Harris’s Instagram post when Rachel was training her. I immediately started following her social media because I’m a slave to all things Jillian. I was quickly inspired by her passion for what she does. Encouraging women to love themselves and their body while simultaneously educating us on good exercise and eating habits. She doesn’t just talk the talk guys, she walks the walk. Posting videos on IG of herself doing push ups and squats in her kitchen while cooking a meal for her family of 5 or doing yoga in her living room with little Adelaide doing laps around her. At the time she was living in Kelowna being so close of course I hoped she would pop into the shop......and than one day it happened!

Truth be told I actually missed it, I was at Noir getting my hair did when Kaitlyn texted me that someone named Rachel came in and asked to talk to me about doing a collaboration, Kaitlyn didn’t recognize her at first and felt like an idiot for not realizing who it was. Long story short, we outfittted Rachel’s whole fam jam for a photo shoot she did with Abbie Rose, the pics were beautiful and sometimes I still see the clothes in other IG pics and get a little thrill. 

So here they are, Rachel’s answers to our 5 little questions along with her beautiful selfie from when she was in Cali looking tanned and happy!

 

1. What is your mirror mantra? You know, that thing you say to yourself in the morning to brighten your day

You're enough

You're a great mom

You're brave

You're loved by 3 amazing little humans and the hottest man in Canada!

2. What is your guilty pleasure music choice?

Country! American girl through and through

3. What is your favorite Canadian-ism?

I don't know if this is a Canadian-ism exactly "because I'm American" but I love how Canada always seems to fight for the under dog. Canada is a kind, open minded and makes space for individuality.

4. What has been your biggest business learning curve?

Taking a stand for being authentic to who I really wanted to be as a business woman, mother and wife as I walked through the process of suddenly having complete strangers have an opinion about my life, my worth and what should matter.

5. What makes you laugh till you snort?

Catch ups with the friends who you bare the good and bad to. They make me laugh till I snort, cry through tears and make me feel safe to be the realist form of myself.

6. Name a fellow Canadian #BossBirch you admire

Kendall Barber from Poppy Barley, I love her as a designer. The positive influence she has on our community and the stands she takes to make woman feel they are strong, beautiful and worthy of greatness.

 

You make us feel pretty worthy of greatness too Rachel.

xo

S

 

WARNING!!! Kid Post!!!

So it’s Spring Break and not realizing it’s 2 whole weeks long rather than only 1 week like when we were kids, we didn’t plan a lot of activities for Stella. We also didn’t realize that her scheduled activities, dance and tae kwon do, would be cancelled. So I’m trying to keep her busy and do fun stuff but I’m failing miserably. 

You see I have a big confession, the kind of confession that will make other mothers give me dirty looks. It may also deter other mothers from wanting their children to play with mine but let’s be honest none of the other moms from Stella’s school are reading this shit anyways.

So here it is folks….I hate playdates. I’ve kept this dirty little secret to myself for years but I recently read an excerpt from Kelly Oxford’s new book of essays where she touches on the subject and it inspired me “to live my truth” for lack of better wording. 

Side note: I hate the term “spirit animal” but I can’t think of a better way to describe what Kelly Oxford is to me than my spirit animal. I just imagine someday if I ever get to meet her we could sit around drinking our iced vanilla lattes discussing all the people in the world who fucking irritate us while we Google mysterious illnesses that we both surely have. Oh and did I mention she’s Canadian AND a lover of the McDonalds Filet ‘O Fish?? All these years I was convinced the only reason it remained on the menu was due to my unwavering loyalty, years of being chastised by friends for eating it and I find somebody who proudly shouts from the rooftops how much she loves it as well!! So Kelly if for some reason you someday read this….visit me in the Okanagan next time you’re home in the Great White North.

But I digress…I think the real reason behind my hatred for playdates is I’m not a huge fan of other parents, yuck….that sounds so ugly!! I’m so sorry but it’s the truth!! That being said there are a few little buddies of Stella’s that are rad kids, most of them though are kids she’s met because I have become friends with their mothers first (Crystal) and they just happen to have kids Stella’s age (Neil). I want to make plans to have play dates with kids from her school but when I pick her up in the afternoon none of them seem too interested in her, and she them. As soon as she sees me she’s like “peace out I’m going home to listen to Bey with my mom”. 

When Stella was a baby/toddler the mom’s from my “Mommy and Me” group would try to arrange playdates at each other houses once a week and I rarely made it to their houses and HATED it when they came to mine. It was so crazy and loud and the kids would destroy my house pulling every single toy Stella owns out of every single labelled bin. But then as everybody is leaving and offering to stay and help clean up Im so anxious to get people out of my house that I just say “oh don’t worry about, it’s not a big deal.” But it is a big deal, I spent 3 hours cleaning the house before you even got here so you would think my house is aways this clean and organized. I could also always tell when the mom’s were 100% judging the lack of outlet covers on all the outlets, or random small things lying around the house (we never had a problem with Stella putting things in her mouth). Or god forbid they look in my pantry and find the no name brand zesty cheezies from Safeway, you know the ones that come in the big clear bag with red printing on them, that Stella had most definitely munched on. I once had a mom say to me in my own house “you know the candle you’re burning in your bathroom is full of toxins and is awful for your child”……ya but it’s my favorite candle from Bath and Body Works so….. 

I’ve basically avoided them unless it was just one other kid. 

I’m also not very good at entertaining kids, complete disclosure here guys, I’m the mom who’s gonna throw on a Disney movie for them and make a pot of KD…and I don’t feel bad about that. My husband is the fun parent, he will take Stella and a friend to the pool or the movies or sit on the floor and play Lego with them for hours!! 

But here we are, 1 whole week left of Spring break and I gotta do it for my kid….I gotta make the ultimate sacrifice and host a playdate. 

Because I’m SUCH a good mom you guys. 

But no more faking it for this working mom, the snacks will be chips and the lunch will be PB&J, we’ll watch a movie….maybe 2. But will the other mom really care?? No, because she’s getting an afternoon off to herself….she’ll probably come pick up her kid with a fresh manicure or no groceries in her car because she had time to get home and unload them by herself. She might have a little spring in her step because she got to poop in private while going down the rabbit hole of Instagram.

So in conclusion….let’s all give each other a parenting break once and a while. Also my kid would think you were the coolest mom ever if you gave her McDonalds for lunch during a playdate!

S

"Come with me and you'll be in a world of pure imagination..."

Ok guys….I’ve been trying to quit sugar for the past year but it has been a problem for me my entire life.

My name is Sierra and I am a sugar addict. 

Not just store bought pasta sauce sugar (FYI it has a shit ton of sugar) I’m talking bags of sour soothers from the gas station at 10pm sugar. Like I said, it’s a problem ladies, I honestly feel like I would lose 10 lbs. just by quitting sugar….but do I want to???

I’ve never really been one for New Years resolutions, I always come up with something just so I can be part of the conversation but I don’t particularly care. I’m more of a Spring has sprung resolution kinda girl. You know, everything is fresh and reborn, new beginnings and all. So my new beginning is to start my journey (I hate that word) to figure out how to cut sugar out of my diet.

I started by making an appt. with a naturopath to help me with this uphill battle. But to my shock and horror she can’t just give me some magic pill made of hemp oil and flax seed that will make all my cravings disappear. Although I did end up walking out of her office with $179 worth of supplements??

She told me I basically have to cold turkey this shit and only sheer will power will kick it….wait, WHAT!! Oh Jesus…lawd grant me the strength!

I spoke to friends who struggle with the same demons and they told me the 3 day detox is hell….headaches, diarrhea, vomiting…..well shit (no pun intended).

I really wish I could say that the first few days sucked and then the clouds parted and it was totally worth the 4 day headache….but I can’t because I’m a big fat cheater!

I convinced myself I wasn’t cheating when I got so desperate 4 hours in to day 1 that I ate a handful of Stella’s Treehouse gummy vitamins.

I told myself “you fuckin got this” because I ordered a HALF SWEET iced vanilla latte from Blenz.

I whole heartedly believed I was doing the work.

But than V-Day rolled around and that thoughtful little Birch Kaitlyn bought me an entire box of chocolates, and not just any chocolates but Purdy’s cream filled…..my kryptonite.

By the end of the day Kaitlyn sat horrified at the amount of chocolates I could eat in one sitting (9 in case you’re wondering). But you guys…it made me SO HAPPY!!!

It felt like that scene in the movie “The Secret Garden” from 1993 when the snow melts and the tulips bloom and the grass pokes through the dirt and the baby deer takes it’s first steps. I could legit feel that god dam blue bird on my shoulder.

Which lead me to realize I’m basically a heroin addict minus the heroin. So here I am starting all over again because I didn’t give it my all the first time around. But I figure publicly announcing my plan and putting it out into the universe like this may help me conquer my beautiful little demon….maybe…possibly??

Over the next few months when I can’t come up with a good topic for my blog I may just give y’all an update on my sugar journey (did I mention I hate the word journey). That being said the last thing I want is for this to become a “weight loss journey” type of blog so don’t worry it won’t be that serious. 

In conclusion whoever coined the phrase “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” has obviously never has an iced vanilla latte.

S

2 Girls, 3 pairs of Spanx and a bottle of Midol walk into a $7 M house…..

 

So a couple of months ago my lovely friend and neighbor Chantelle (JC Bradley) suggested I try advertising in Okanagan Home Boulevard magazine, so I asked her to pass on my info to her contact. Next thing I know Mario is calling me on a Saturday night to set up my ad but also suggested they feature me in their Inspired Style article. I was very flattered but to be honest I just thought he was being nice, and I really didn’t think anything would come of it. I was also told they’re planing on doing the Inspired Style issue on Chantelle for a future issue and I instantly thought “well that makes perfect sense”. She’s beautiful and glamorous and knows the names of super expensive exotic flowers and her hair looks like a Disney princesses hair and she co-owns this amazing “Tiffany’s of the North” jewelry store. Anyways, as i said, didn’t think much would come of it. But then a week later I got a text from Lia Crowe. 

FYI Lia Crowe is kind of amazing, she’s a writer, photographer, stylist and the creative director of Boulevard magazine, she also use to be a model….definitely worth Googling for Lady Boss inspo.

She ended up sending me the questionnaire to fill out for the interview and gave me some examples of her past articles of the people she has featured and I nearly shit my pants. These people were so worldly and sophisticated!!! 

One of the questions was “What is your favorite piece of art?” Past Featured Guests answered pieces by Picasso and Robert Longo and my first instinct was to say this canvas print from Ikea that I bought 10 years ago.

“Favourite handbag?”

PFG: Louis Vuitton or Cèline 

ME: Well i got a great deal on this floral satchel from Winners. 

“Favourite Hotel?” 

PFG: The Parker, Palm Springs

ME: When I was in the 7th grade my family drove to Prince George for our one and only family vacation and we stayed at Esther’s Inn, blew my fuckin mind!!!

 

Anyways, you get the idea….you can take the girl out of the trailer park but you can’t take the trailer park out of the girl (for the record I lived in a tiny trailer with my whole family till I was 16)…that shit builds character, clearly.

So I started feeling very insecure and after taking days to answer the questions, it took a pep talk from my Kaitlyn to remind me how fucking awesome I truly am and to just be myself. I eventually found a way to do just that and answer the questions honestly without people thinking I’m missing my 2 front teeth while I strum a banjo on my front porch.

But then came the photo shoot day which happened to be the day after we held an event at the store and each put in a 12 hour day at the shop. So Kaitlyn showed up at my house early to do my make up and I put on every pair of Spanks I own and we headed over. As we’re driving over we both realized we have mad cramps and are both feeling bloated from our periods (the joys of working side by side with another female all day….synchronicity!). So I grab the bottle of Midol I keep in my console…..frozen solid. So we’re exhausted, crampy, bloated and both have the nervous trots….awesome!

Side Note: Kim Appelt from Style By Kim XO also contacted us to bring some pieces for her to use to style the model for the main shoot that was also taking place. I was definitely stress sweating, which as we all know smells totally different then normal sweat.

So we pull up to this amazing $7 million dollar estate with a huge iron gate as we waited for the gate to open I felt like I was on “Knots Landing” (if you don’t get this reference…educate yourself immediately). Once we got inside we probably looked like tourists visiting Canada for the first time, mouths open, eyes wide in awe of the beauty. This place was the tits! As we made our way to the master bedroom, oh look Jenny Mckinney is doing Teigan Moore’s make up….oh and Darren Hull is checking out the lighting in the pool room!!! WTF!

We find Kim prepping with her assistants for the shoot, she was super sweet and lovely to chat with and made us feel at ease as it was pretty clear we were out of our comfort zone. Although I could get pretty damn comfy in a $7 million house.

We pass Lia Crowe in the hallway, she quickly introduces herself and says she’ll come find me when she’s ready for me, I’m instantly intimidated, she’s all business, a walking talking #BossBirch. We putter around the house freaking out at the amazing details and that view!! We meet Jenny and she’s just the sweetest!! Then Lia finds me….show time.

 

 

It was pretty obvious that I’m super stiff and clearly not a model, but after confiding in Lia that I was super intimidated by the past featured guests answers to the questionnaire and the photo shoot in general, she was so comforting and calmed my nerves. I quickly developed a Lady Boss crush on her….she was running the show at this shoot and taking names! She was so friendly and included Kaitlyn in the process as she could tell I was more comfortable with my hype girl around. 

Side Side Note: Kaitlyn pulled all her best moves to make me laugh and smile “naturally” and Lia totally caught her twerking behind her. 

We ended up shooting in the library that legit looked like the library in Beauty and the Beast, floor to 18 foot ceiling shelves of books with a ladder on wheels. 

Side side side Note: Lia said my make up looked amazing….reminder that Kaitlyn did my make up. Jillian Harris isn’t the only Harris with a Kaitlyn.

So after an hour or so of shooting we hauled our asses back to the store. We were quickly brought back down to earth as Kaitlyn started cleaning the wine stain rings off the counter from the night before and I peeled off my Spanks feeling like a can of Pilsbury Crescents when you pop it open. 

 

After a few weeks of waiting Lia emailed me the link to the article today and it’s kind of amazing. She didn’t change my dorky answers or anything, she let me be me! Overall it was such an amazing experience and I’m so honored that Boulevard even considered me. 

 

So here’s the link to the article if you’re at all interested in finding out what my favorite restaurant is.

https://issuu.com/boulevardlifestylesinc/docs/2017_03_blvd_okanaganhome_web

S

 

 

 

An Introduction to this A-type, know it all, bossy Birch

Guys....I'm Sierra, owner and self proclaimed control freak of Birch Hill Studio. I decided to start a blog section to add to our website because IG is great to put a face to the biz but not enough to put a voice to the biz. Plus I'm super opinionated and have a lot to say. That being said this it NOT a G rated or even PG 13 rated blog. I swear like a trucker and I love taboo topics. This isn't your run of the mill "check out our new stock" blog either. I'll try to keep my posts short and sweet, the perfect read for when you're pooping at work or hiding in your bathroom from your kids for 5 min of "me" time.

I will definitely share stories from my day to day life, so if you're a member of my family of a close friend, you've been warned *Gerran, Stella, Robyn and Kaitlyn*.

I don't sugar coat things and I certainly don't beat around the bush. I'll try to avoid typos but for the past 10 years I've thoroughly enjoyed autocorrect so I'm lazy.

I'll let you know in advance if what you're about to read is a "mom post" so you can skip if you're one of those people who thinks children are gross and sticky.

There's going to be sex stories, fart jokes and poop jokes, frankly these are my favourite topics of discussion.

I'm very honest and very real, I've had more established business women tell me I should tone it down and keep it G rated for work. Sorry doll, not my jam.

Oh and I'm also 35 years old and tend to talk like I'm 27 (ie. "That shit was dope" or "That's fuckin rad") because I spend most of my time with a 27 year old.

Enter Kaitlyn....the 27 year old. You'll read several anecdotes about Kaitlyn because as much as I love this girl to pieces, she constantly reminds me how much I don't miss my 20's. That being said  she's super mature and has her shit very much together for her age. She's the manager of the shop and bestie...she's my Grigio Girl.

You'll most definitely become familiar with my family, namely my husband Gerran and my daughter Stella. Gerran owns a restaurant here in Vernon (Browns Socialhouse), he treats me like a queen, spoils me rotten and spends his days off cleaning the house and going on adventures with Stella. He also farts and poops with the door open...choose your battles ladies.

Than there's Stella, oh my little Stella, by far the funniest and kindest little soul I know. She's 5 years old and has the manners of the downstairs staff at Downton Abbey, "Please" "Thank you" "yes ma'am" etc. The other day while I brushed her hair (which is a daily battle) she wailed "oh the travity, oh the travity" pretty sure she meant travesty.

There may also be a sprinkling of my sister Robyn, she lives in Winnipeg with her 2 girls. She's been my #1 fan and biggest cheerleader for as long as I can remember. She's the one person my whole life who's never doubted my ability to get shit done. But most importantly she ALWAYS  laughs at my jokes.

So that's me folks, read my blog weekly or don't, my feelings won't be hurt.

Ok, that's a lie, I'm super sensitive so just lie and say you read it and you think I'm hilarious.

S