Feeling WONDERFUL on Christmas Morning!!

This post was sponsored by WonderBra, but all opinions are my own.

It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas! 

Girls! Take out your long fuzz socks, warm blankets and comfy pjs because Winter is finally here! Don’t get me wrong, I am a sucker for laying out hours in the sun, swimming in the pool, and driving around town with my windows down (cause I’m a cool mom!), but for some reason I am really looking forward to this year’s Winter!

I’m sure it has everything to do with the fact that it’s going to be Melia’s first Winter, and we are going to be able to celebrate Christmas and New Years together! My eyes are watering up just thinking about it, and my heart just exploded (joking not joking). 

So I have been getting everything ready for Christmas, and I still need to find a tree, and some cute pjs for us to wear (any suggestions?), but I DO have the house partially decorated, gifts partially wrapped, and some comfy bras to wear because lets face it, Christmas just isn’t the same without feeling 100% comfortable, and wonderful… especially as a mom! 

Comfort is the utmost important for me, so I have recently stocked up on some of my favourite WonderBra bras, since they are not only cozy, but also provide flexibility, stretch, and beautiful designs to choose from! What better way to feel and look beautiful then with a WonderBra that has the best combination of quality, comfort, and fashion! I also love that they offer a selection of underwire & wirefree bras, plus size bras, and more. There’s so much to choose from!

Here is a list of the WonderBras I got for Christmas:

I am so excited to wear these for the holiday season, and forever to be honest! As a mom, I am always running around the house picking up socks, Kleenex, changing diapers, doing laundry, making food, changing more diapers, tidying up, making the bed, giving Melia a bath, (lol what DON’T we do?).. But this Christmas morning, I know that I will look and feel wonderful, wearing my beautiful and comfortable WonderBras!

So if you are looking for the perfect bra, I highly recommend them. I wish I would have discovered them sooner!

By the way, I’ll definitely be sharing photos of our Christmas celebrations on Instagram, so if you’d like to check them out follow me: @carlamariabruno and Melia: @meliazeineddine

Read more about WonderBra:

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My MOVO Photo SmartCine!

Hey guys! It has been a while since my last blog post, and to be honest it hasn’t been easy trying to find time to sit down to write, now that I have a newborn baby basically hanging off of me 24/7 lol. She’s the cutest thing ever though! I am literally so obsessed! Like, where did she come from? Does anyone even know where babies ACTUALLY come from? lol Somewhere in the universe I’m sure…

Ok, but seriously philosophical questions aside, I have been attempting to catch every single family moment (as you can probably tell from all the daily photos I post on my Instagram Account and her Instagram Account). I have been trying to film and take photos of everything when it comes to Melia. But honestly it’s not easy trying to capture high-quality REAL moments, without having to set up a whole day for “photoshoots”.

So, I came across the MOVO Photo SmartCine Video Kit, and it’s a total game changer! I fell in love with it and I wanted to share it with you because I know you will love it too! I got myself one just now and let me tell you, it is the BEST!

The Video Kit works with any smartphone, and it’s super easy to put together (I posted a photo and video on my Instagram if you want to check it out for more info).

The Kit comes with two high quality lenses (one fish eye and one wide angle), an LED Ring Light (I know all the girls out there are going to LOVE that, makes for a flawless selfie!), a professional microphone, a portable rig for easy movement, a security grip and so much more!

They’re currently on Kickstarter, so go check them out and give them some support with a pledge! You can help back them and in return get a MOVO Photo SmartCine yourself! I have been having so much fun with mine, taking photos around the house and taking it out with me on the road, or to my parents house. It’s so easy to use that even they have been joining in on the fun and taking professional family photos and videos on a daily basis!

Here are some selfie photos I took using the SmartCine with the Wide Angel and Fish Eyed Lenses!

I am so happy, now I can capture all of life’s moments easily and in high-quality, thanks to the SmartCine!

My Pink, White, and Gold Tea Party Themed Baby Shower

Last weekend, May 20, I got to celebrate my Pink, White, and Gold Tea Party Themed Baby Shower with close friends of the family. Women who have been a part of my life for many years, some ever since I was born. I feel so special and lucky to have been able to share such a special part of my life with all of them!

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My sister, who now lives in California, flew down to Ottawa the night before the shower to celebrate with us. Of course she wasn't going to miss out on my first ever baby shower! I was so happy to have her here, since she is my one and only sibling, and best friend, I had missed her so much this past month so her being here this week was wonderful! 

She is staying the week because I actually had two baby showers (Baby Shower # 2: Tropical Baby Shower). 

My mom has been, as always, so helpful in every step of every journey I have always taken. She is my rock, and best friend. I love her so much - just writing this makes my heart feel so warm inside. I started planning my baby shower months ago, connecting with so many talented vendors in Ottawa to make it all come together. My mom was a part of each step, and spent weeks with me talking, discussing, brainstorming and planning over "mate" (a popular Argentinean tea).

She stayed up all hours of the night, days before the shower, designing and baking all of the different sweets for my dessert table. I cannot believe how gorgeous the stork cookies turned out. Each cookie took hours to make, and was made out of pure love! I am so lucky to have the best mom in the world, I can only hope to be as amazing as her one day. I look up to her, and love her with all my heart!

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My dad is the cutest! Of course he doesn't know much about how to plan a baby shower, but he was so helpful in any possible way he could be. We hosted the shower at my parents home which was originally planned for being outside in their backyard because they have a beautiful and big one, but the weather called for rain so we had to last minute plan for indoors (it ended up being a gorgeous day outside anyways, so we ate inside, but played games and hung out outside). 

My poor parents had to move everything out of the dinning room so we could arrange the gorgeous set up that I had all my vendors coming in to do the morning of. But it was no questions asked, my dad (just as much as my mom) wanted this day to be perfect! So he spent days moving all the furniture out, making sure everything was in order, tiding up, working with our gardener to make sure the backyard and front yard were perfect, cutting the hedges, opening the pool etc! I am so lucky to have such a strong and kind father, who has given his life for me and has done nothing but love and protect me! 

Alright so now lets chat about the design. Because I decided to have two baby showers (it was easier this way because of the large number of guests), I had to also come up with two themes. The first baby shower, hosted by my mom and sister, was a Tea Party Themed Baby shower. The colours were all pink, white, and gold (with a hint of green). My mom worked with Lara from Golden Apple Events who helped organize day-of scheduling, game ideas, execution of games, day-of set up, and kept the whole day running smoothly according to schedule! She was amazing!

We completely changed our dinning room into a Tea Party sit down. With the help of all the vendors who completely understood my vision, we created the set up even more beautifully than I had imagined! At the end of the room, right behind where I sat, Sage Designs set up a stunning white and pink fabric backdrop. They also provided us with gold chairs, and white linen which made the whole room feel so special. 

Monara Events supplied the chinaware, because what's a tea party without the tea cups and tea pots, right? Sticking to the white, pink, and gold theme, we set up each table with gorgeous sandwich plates, dessert plates, tea cups and saucers, tea pots, creamers, and sugar bowls!

The savoury sandwiches, scones, cheese and fruit was provided by Centurion Conference and Event Centre. They also provided hot and cold drinks, as well as the juice cups, cutlery and napkins for each guest. 

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I worked with Carling Flowers to create the stunning flower centrepieces for each table. Originally, when we thought the baby shower was going to be outside, we were going to have one long table, so it was going to be one large centrepiece in the middle, and then two medium ones on either side. However our last minute decision to bring the party inside meant we would have three separate tables, and therefore needed 6 centrepieces. Carling Flowers had no issue with this last minute change, and they were so easy to work with. They truly ended up creating gorgeous arrangements! The colours were perfect and so romantic!

Lettered it not only designed gorgeous place cards, but she hand wrote each guests name on each of them! They were flawless - it was the perfect touch to the whole set up. She also made me a beautiful welcome sign that was placed on the outside of the house for when my guests arrived. I was in love with everything! 

I was so happy with the balloon wall that Balloons N' Blossoms created on the outside of the house. Right at the entrance, they completely covered the brick around the front door and made a fabulous wall of small and large white balloons, which took them two days to create! They came the night before and the morning of, to finish it all. It turned out super cute, and was the perfect spot to stand and take photos!

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It was so easy to work with The Loot Bag Lady. I told her my Tea Party Theme, and Baby Shower colours of pink, white, and gold, and she took it from there. She spent a couple of days crafting the gift favours for my guests and presented me with the design. Of course, they were perfect! Little tea cups and saucers, with a tea bag on the inside, all wrapped up in cellophane, and tied with each guest name. 

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The Paper Florist hand-made each and every single flower that you see on the walls and around the dessert table! She is extremely talented and was an angel to work with. She worked closely with me on my design and completely understood my vision. We created a flower wall at the entrance where my guests and I could stand and pose to take photos. Of course, sticking to theme of pink, white, and gold. Then she set up a charming marble table with gold legs (which she made!!!), and a white and gold backdrop (also made by her) that was framed with more of her beautiful hand made paper flowers. Wow! 

As mentioned above, my mom made all the super cute cookies! Each hand made! As many of you may know, I started CarlasCakes 8 years ago, so of course, I am a baker. But my mom didn't want me to have to make my own baby shower cake so we split up the work! She baked family recipe cake flavours and I decorated! The top tier was a vanilla cake that was filled with Dulce De Leche and rolled up to create those lines when you cut into it! Then the top and bottom of the vanilla roll was our famous chocolate cake that we use for everything! The bottom tier is literally, the BEST carrot cake EVER! Picture a super moist cake, stuffed with walnuts, coconut, raisons, pineapple, and carrot, with a hint of cinnamon and layered with cream cheese frosting in the middle. Mmmmm, all of my guests loved it and couldn't have enough of it (including myself, I think I ended up having 2 slices lol)! Its been a family recipe forever, and will most likely stay that way for many more generations to come! We tied it all together with white macarons, and adorable chocolate and vanilla cupcakes that were filled with chocolate and vanilla cream and lined with a beautiful and classy white lace liner. 

As a thank you to my wonderful mother and sister, I got my Hostess Gift Baskets from Inka Organics. I wrote another blog with more detail about what each basket had because they are both so special and unique that I want to focus on each with more detail! Read Here They are organic and practical gift basket items each different and unique and perfect for each hostess!

I have been working with Bethany my photographer, for over a month now. I trust her 100% for all of my photos that she takes for my Instagram, and of course for my Baby Shower. She is so fun to work with. She knows my good side (lol) and knows what kind of photos I like! She is very professional in her work and takes stunning photos. I love working with her! She is truly the best!

I am blessed to have worked with such a talented and amazing team of women, who all came together to make this special day perfect! The attention to detail from each vendor really brought the whole event together and made it exceptional. 

Thank you again to everyone, I couldn't have done it without you!

Check out each vendor on Instagram:

Event Planner: Golden Apple Events
Fabric Backdrop, Chairs, & Linen: Sage Designs
Chinaware: Monara Events
Food & Drinks: Centurion Conference and Event Centre
Flower Arrangements: Carling Flowers
Place Cards & Welcome Sign: Lettered it
Balloon Wall: Balloons N' Blossoms
Gift Favours: The Loot Bag Lady
Paper Flower Wall, Marble Table, & Paper Flower Back Drop: The Paper Florist
Cake, Cupcakes, Cookies & Macarons: CarlasCakes
Hostess Gift Baskets: Inka Organics
Photography: Bethany 

Costa Rica

My parents were both born, raised and married in Argentina before moving to Canada and having me and my sister. My dad has a sister who ended up moving to Costa Rica and getting married over there, and his other sister moved over with her as well. So although I am of Argentinean decent, I have family in Costa Rica as well. 

I have been to Costa Rica many times, and it was mostly when I was younger when I would go on the Christmas holidays or Summer Vacations with my dad to visit my family. I have so many fond memories of playing on the beach until sunset, and sitting round a bon fire in the sand singing to the stars with my aunts and cousins. 

Costa Rica will always hold a special place in my heart. 

Before I began travelling the rest of the world however, I made it a habit to visit my cousin Maria Pia every year around the same time (Spring) and would spend about a month in Costa Rica exploring. She would always take me around to the most beautiful mountains, and we would watch the most majestic sunsets I have ever seen. 

This was all before I began really documenting my travels around the world, and taking professional photos and videos, but I wanted to share some of my Costa Rica photos from over the years anyways. Just to give a little taste of the beauty this country holds. 

These photos are from one of the last times I visited Costa Rica. My dad comes from a family of 5, him and his brother live in Canada, his two sisters live in Costa Rica, and another sister lives in Argentina. Being that they are spread all over the world, it had been over 20 years since all 5 siblings had been together at the same time, so for New Years they finally planned and comitted to being together and celebrating in Costa Rica!

We rented an amazing home right on the beach on top of a mountain and had an amazing time. There was an infinity pool on the roof, and on the balcony there was a hot tub. Around the house was a lazy river pool. It was amazing!

These photos are of some beautiful bridges I came across while visiting an island in Costa Rica. These bridges led the path that many of the children there took on a daily basis to get to school. They are old and broken down, and probably very dangerous according to our standards, but beautiful nonetheless. 

Instagram: @CarlaMariaBruno & @TravelWithMeTV
Watch out adventures on YouTube: youtube.com/TravelWithMeTV
Facebook: TravelWithMeTV

 

Dubai ATV Adventures

As you may or may not know, I lived in Dubai for just over 2 years. These were easily some of the best years of my life so far. 

Every day was an adventure and I never could get used to the fact that I actually lived there. Every day I would wake up and just look out the window and say to myself "wow". It was almost like I was dreaming the whole time. 

I don't know what it is about Dubai that I loved so much. Theres just something about it though, that will always hold a special place in my soul. 

From the people, to the food, to the adventures, every day was a blast!

One of my favourite things to do in Dubai was to visit the desert. When we first moved to Dubai we did the typical Desert Tours that tourist do. But being that we lived there for so long, we couldn't keep living the tourist life, we had to live and truly experience the local life. 

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Some of our friends called us up one day and asked if we wanted to rent some ATV's and take them out in the desert. Of course we agreed, because I always love a good adventure, and so we packed our stuff, prepared some lunch and headed to the desert. 

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We all met up literally in the middle of no where.. I am still unsure as to how the GPS knew where to take us, but my husband was driving so I guess I will never know (lol). 

Our friends brought some meat to bbq, and ordered some ATV's to be delivered in the middle of nowhere. It was one of the best times of my life. But then again, I guess I say that about everything... but it really was! My sister and best friend were in town too at the time visiting me from Canada so it was the perfect adventure for all of us to experience together. 

After spending the day on the ATVs, getting sand in our hair, jumping off of dunes, crashing, and having fun, we set up the fire (the guys did) and BBQd the meat they brought once it got dark and the stars were out. 

Theres no better feeling then being with the people you love, and experiencing a moment that you cannot get anywhere else. 

Instagram: @CarlaMariaBruno & @TravelWithMeTV
Watch out adventures on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wr1nW3qtkcw
Facebook: TravelWithMeTV