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    Our Curated Collection

    Our Curated Collection

    This week I was asked why I have chosen the brands I have to be carried at Citrus.  It got me thinking, if you haven’t been in to the store to have a visit with me, you probably don’t know much about my “curated collection”.

     

    Firstly, what does curated mean?  It means that I have personally selected everything that I carry at Citrus.  If there are products I’m interested in that I haven’t seen myself, I go to trade shows or even order them online for my own family first to make sure I love them before bringing them in the store.  This also means the store is always changing.  I love chatting, and in doing so I’ve been given tons of suggestions from our customers on different brands I should bring in.  I research them, do polls online, and ultimately decide whether they suit the store or not.  I am always open to ideas from you, so please share your thoughts!

     

    Secondly, I love buying locally.  I bring as many Canadian brands into the store that I can.  Lots of the brands we carry are Canadian, some from right here in British Columbia.  This can mean that prices are higher.  It also means I’m supporting a local family by buying their brand, and you’re supporting a local family by purchasing those items from my shop.  The brands that I bring in from Canada use ethically sourced materials, mostly bamboo, which is extremely high quality.  These are clothes you can pass down from child to child!

     

    Thirdly, because our store is small, and we bring in lots of different small brands we won’t always have the size your looking for.  I purchase small quantities of size variants, but often have the option to re-order items.  If there is something you love but we don’t have the size you need, just ask I may be able to bring it in for you!  

     

    I’m excited to be adding some new brands into the store this year.  I hope you like them, and would love your feedback on your favourites, and ones you don’t love so much.  This store is my dream, but It's for you, help me decide what you like to see and what you don’t!

    Disneyland

    Disneyland

    Disneyland

     

    While I was still pregnant, Tony and I made the decision to take the family on vacation to Scottsdale following Pendry’s arrival.  It is always nice to go somewhere sunny and warm with a new baby.  It tends to motivate me to get out walking and dive back into a healthier lifestyle, while the weather is still cool at home.  We booked our flights, and about a week before we left home, I told Tony I thought we should drive to Disneyland.  We had help on our trip, my mom and a nanny, so what better time to venture out on a 6 hour drive from Phoenix to Anaheim with 3 children under 5!

     

    We planned to leave Phoenix on Sunday but delayed a day as grandma and the kids were unwell.  We decided we would leave the house by 7 am the following day. When Monday rolled around we ended up leaving at 9:30, no stress, no yelling, it just took longer than planned to get 7 people organized and on the road.  The drive was perfect, I kept waiting for the baby to cry, or the kids to complain and it never happened.  We stopped in Indio for In and Out burger and gave everyone a chance to stretch their legs.  I woke up (yes woke up) the baby to feed him, and he went back to sleep like an angel. We arrived at the hotel around 4 dropped our bags and caught a shuttle to Disneyland!  Tony was told when we booked the hotel that the shuttle made the most sense for our family, and is the least expensive and most convenient option to get to the park and back daily.  I paid $80 US for the shuttle, and off we went. 

     

    Day 1

     

    The first day at the park was magical, after all that travelling, the kids still held it together.  We knocked off a few attractions; The Tiki Hut, The Jungle Cruise, Tea Cups, Autotopia, and Buzz Lightyear Galactica.  We also watched the parade, took the train through the park, and watched the fireworks!  We left the park on the second to last shuttle and arrived back at the hotel by 11 with 3 sleeping babies.  Success!

     

    Day 2

     

    Our first full day at Disneyland, we grabbed our Starbucks and took off running.  We went straight to Toon Town where we found Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy! We got their autographs, checked out their homes & loaded up on Disney gear!  After Toon Town we used our Max Pass (you can make reservations for rides so you’re not waiting in line) on It’s a Small World.  I’d never been on that ride, but the kids absolutely loved it! Beckett loved seeing all the different parts of the world, and it was nice to sit down for a few minutes.  It was critical to check out Fantasyland, where we met Beauty & the Beast and rode a carousel.  We waited in line for 45 minutes to do the Dumbo Ride, and the kids said it was worth the wait!  We then used our max pass and went on Splash Mountain, I couldn’t believe Beckett was brave enough to do it, but then again I guess he didn’t know any better.  Tony & Beckett loved the ride, but came off soaked.  Luckily we packed extra clothes for the kids or it would have ended the day.

     

    We decided to head over to California Adventureland and check out everything there.  The Max Pass also allowed us to flip between parks throughout the day, without it you have to choose one park at the start of the day and are unable to then flip to the other one.  California Adventureland’s rides tend to be more mature, but that’s where the Frozen cast and play is, and all of the Pixar characters including Cars Land.  It was warm and the kids were getting a bit tired, so we went to the theatre and watched the Frozen play.  I’m not sure what I was expecting, but it was fantastic, an hour long professional performance.  Both the kids were glued to the stage, and the rest of us enjoyed it too! It was a nice break in the day, and afterwards we wanted to do something for Beckett.  We walked to Cars Land and used our max passes to get on the Radiator Springs Roller Coaster.  Now this, is a must do, the roller coaster was great, and took you all through Radiator Springs with tons of visual stimulation.  I ran back to Disneyland and went on the Indiana Jones ride, it was just as fun as I remember.  While I was over there, the kids finished their day with the light show.  We missed our shuttle so ended up taking an Uber back to the hotel, we paid $10 to Uber.

     

    On our last and final day we decided to go back to Disneyland and do a couple of the kids favourite things over again. Emmeline also wanted to see some more princesses.  We went back to Autotopia, the carousel, and Tony & I rode the Matterhorn.  We waited in line and saw Belle again, and Emme got an Anna princess dress.  We then cruised over to California Adventureland where we saw Buzz, Woody & Mr. Potatohead.  At this point the kids felt ready to go home.  They were really good, and we found them a quiet place to sit with grandma and have some snacks and a hotdog.  Tony, Ashley (our nanny), and I went on one final roller coaster at Pixar Pier. This was the Incredible’s roller coaster, but it is definitely not for small children!  I’m not a roller coaster fanatic but if you are, this would be a great ride for you, it takes you upside down, sideways, through water all at high speeds.  Tony & I survived it, and I think I can speak for both of us that we were happy when it was over!  That was a wrap to our trip, Tony went and grabbed the van from the hotel and we hit the road!  The kids now have lots of stories to share with their friends, and hopefully we created some special memories for them!

     

    Tips for Disneyland

     

    1. Get the Max Pass
    2. Take lots of sunscreen
    3. Always pack a change of clothes for children (it cools off in the evening, layers are best)
    4. Take a stroller for any child under 5, there is lots of walking (you can rent strollers if you don’t want to pack one, or you can buy an umbrella stroller down there for about $20 US)
    5. Bring snacks (you can bring food and drinks into the park, we brought lots of snacks every day for the kids)
    6. The food carts have typically the same food everywhere (hotdogs, turkey legs, pizza) not a huge selection, but there are lots of restaurants. We only went to one restaurant as we wanted to maximize the time we had, but the food became redundant.
    7. Don’t waste your money on the shuttle! Uber everywhere! #weneeduber
    8. Take your cell phone, download the app, and use your max pass to skip the line for the most popular rides.
    9. Watch the parade, if your kids don’t care about autographs or a one-on-one experience. You will see tons of Disney characters in the parade, and enjoy some down time.
    10. Throw your schedule out the window! If your kids normally go to bed at 7 like mine do, as Elsa would say “Let it Go, Let it Goooooo!”  You’re in Disneyland for a really short amount of time, just enjoy yourselves, and pray your children still like to sleep in strollers.
    11. If you want your children dressed in Disney gear there are lots of places to get it before your trip that will save you money.

    Pendry's Shower

    Pendry's Shower

    Today we celebrated my littlest love - Pendry Thomas Brian Harris.  My moms threw a Peter Rabbit themed baby shower fit for a prince.  It was a beautiful sunny day, and we had a really nice time being spoiled by friends and family.  

    During the shower someone asked me how we came up with the name Pendry.  It made me think, do I know why my friends chose the names they did for their babies?  Do they know why we chose our children's names?  Have your parents ever told you the story behind your name?

    I find it really interesting to learn about names, and found it challenging naming my own children.  My husband and I typically take about two weeks to commit to names.  That being said, we don't find out the gender until baby arrives, so we really don't start picking names in advance.

    If you're interested, I thought I'd share our children's names and the story behind them.  I'd love for you to leave a comment below, and share the same with me!

    Beckett - 

    Tony (my husband) studied every baby name list he could find, and we just could not settle on a name for our new baby boy.  He finally found a name he loved off the lists, Beckett. Thomas Becket was Archbishop of Canterbury, and later venerated a saint.  Samuel Beckett won a Nobel Prize in Literature and was a renowned playwright and poet.  Both of these historical figures led to our love of the name.  While in both cases Beckett was their surname, we really love the originality of the name and the history of it.  

    Emmeline - 

    We truly didn't expect to be blessed with a daughter.  On Tony's side, there are 12 boys and only 3 girls!  Despite this, we had actually made a list of girls names just in case.  Once Emmeline arrived none of the names on our list seemed quite right.  From the day she arrived we could tell that she was strong, determined, and needed a name to suit.  We started researching strong women in history.  We came across Emmeline Pankhurst, who was a political activist, and a leader in the women's suffrage movement.  She was recognized as one of the 100 most important people of the twentieth century.  I loved the idea of naming our daughter after such a strong female!

    Pendry - 

    Our littlest love is named after his grandpas (3 of them).  After my father-in-law passed away a couple of years ago, we started researching his family history on ancestry.ca.  It was from that research that we came across the name Pendry.  The name was passed down from generations and was last given to my Tony's grandfather.  It was also important to my husband and I for our dads' names to be apart of Pendry's name, therefore we came up with Pendry Thomas Brian.

    Piper - 

    Piper is our 7 year old golden doodle.  We brought him home at 8 weeks, at that time he had been given the name Sacha.  We wanted to choose a name for our fur baby that matched us as a couple.  We chose the name Piper because of our love for the ocean.  We love going to Piper's lagoon and taking in the breathtaking view, including Shack Island.  It is still one of our favourite places to take Piper for a walk, 7 years later.

     

     So now tell me, how did you choose your children's name(s)?

    My Journey to Citrus

    My Journey to Citrus

    Hi, and welcome to my first ever blog post!    Naturally, I’d like to introduce myself and tell you my story.  

     

    My name is Leslie, and I was born and raised in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island.  Nanaimo is a small town (on an island) on the west coast of British Columbia.  Growing up I loved where I lived but always thought one day I would move to a big city.  After graduating high school I decided to go to university in Kamloops, a town with a very similar population. 🤷🏻‍♀️  After spending a semester in Kamloops, I was homesick and transferred back to Nanaimo.  I’ve been here ever since, and have really gained a huge appreciation for our island!  If you haven’t been here, you must visit!  We are blessed with a very mild climate which enables us to enjoy our surroundings all year.  We have beautiful parks, beaches, and mountains to explore.  

     

    During university I also worked at my dad’s business.  I worked my way through the company until I became the general manager.  During that time, I also fell in love.  Believe it or not I met my husband, Tony, when we were just kids.  Our dads both had a passion for boating.  We hung out on boats every summer of our adolescence.  We hadn’t seen each other in a few years and wound up living next door to each other.  Once we figured that out, we started spending time together again, and married in 2013.  I gave birth to our first son, Beckett, in September of 2014 all while still working at my family’s business.  I noticed during this time that there was a lack of specialty baby items available on the island.  I would often order products or clothing online, and would always stock up when I visited Vancouver.  My husband and I like to research things so we can make conscious decisions about what to purchase.  We spent days studying cribs, strollers, ethical companies, and local goods.  

     

    Two years later I gave birth to our daughter, Emmeline.  I again noticed that I couldn’t purchase the items I wanted close to home.  I love shopping for my babies, but would always prefer to support small business.  

     

    It was about a year after I had my daughter that I decided to leave my family's business, and follow my passion.  I researched even more, went to different baby shows, and started connecting with brands.  I built my website and launched it in February of 2018.  During this time I shipped out of our basement, and even set up a little store in our home so people could come and shop.    Later last year we found the perfect building for my store, we renovated, and I opened in October!  Oh yeah, and I was pregnant with our third child. What better place to enjoy my pregnancy than in a children’s store where I get to meet parents, grandparents, and people who love children everyday!  

     

    I gave birth to our second son, Pendry, just over a month ago! I am enjoying all the baby snuggles, and am stopping in to work as much as possible because I truly love what I do!  I will be back full time soon, but in the meantime I’ll continue to connect with you over Instagram, Facebook, and online ordering!  If you stop in the shop while I’m there, you’ll likely see me with my new babe!  

     

    Lastly, I just want to thank my friends and family that were my cheerleaders on my journey to Citrus.  And of course all of my customers, I opened a baby store, but you keep my baby store open! Thank you for shopping small! 

     

    xoxo, 

     

    Leslie 

    Leaving you with a picture of our new baby, Pendry.

    Pendry