One of the many benefits to conducting these interviews for Mini Model Gallery is that I get to learn so much more about different moms than just the surface of their fashion or materialistic interests. Tania’s love for flowers is the foundation to the way she lives her life and the core inspiration for her blog (Mama in Bloom). Tania’s desire to bring awareness on mental health and body positivity to her family and the people that read her blog is commendable, inspirational and one of the many attractive facets of this interview. I absolutely loved conducting this interview and I am sure you will love reading it and getting to know Tania a little more too.
1. Hi Tania, please give us a little intro about you and your family.
We’re a family of four living just north of Toronto, Canada! I’m Tania, a 27 year old, mostly, stay at home mom, who juggles my professional life as best, whenever I can. My husband, Dustin, is a work from home dad who loves the outdoors, cooking, design but is a family man first & foremost. My son, Henri, is a rambunctious 2.5 year old with an infectious smile, huge heart & lots of spunk. My daughter, Magnolia, is just over a year old & the light of our lives with her loving, calm & sweet nature. We also have a Bernese Mountain dog named Leah, our fur baby!
2. Can you tell us about your blog and what inspired you to start it?
I think something happens when you’re expecting or have just had a child, where you start to feel time slip away quicker than it used to. The value of memories & moments start to grow in ways you didn’t know possible. For me, I just wanted to remember it all & create a space where our family, friends (& someday, our children) could go & look back on it all fondly (I hope!). So I guess the blog started in desperation really, to have somewhere to put it all & somewhere to go when we start to forget. But it’s since grown into a much broader space for me, it’s always evolving & I love that it’s expanding with us as a family, as well as with me personally.
3. Where does the inspiration come from for your blog posts?
From anywhere & everywhere! The entire premise of Mama In Bloom, is to encourage fellow moms, & anyone really, to never stop growing, changing, challenging yourself for the better. The idea of being constantly in ‘bloom’ is what motivates me! It’s made such an impact on me & the way I live, that I want to use my space to encourage, celebrate & talk about ways that we can all flourish in our day-to-day lives in whatever form is relevant in my life at that particular time.
4. What is the meaning behind your blog name, Mama in Bloom?
My love language is flowers, they gives me so much pleasure & since I was a little girl in my grandmother’s incredible garden, I’ve been obsessed. The metaphor of the way flowers rejuvenate, change, evolve has always spoken to me & I didn’t want to limit myself by naming a focus for my online space so that word, ‘bloom,’ stuck out to me. From the day that we learned I was expecting, my husband seamlessly started calling me ‘mama’ & the two words together just felt right.
5. I understand that you are personally focused on mental health issues and body positivity, can you please elaborate on that?
I’ve battled GAD (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) for over a decade & it’s been such a rollercoaster of finding ways to help manage it. I’ve been forced to let go of so many things I’ve been taught about what it means to take care of yourself (physically & mentally), as well as changing my perception of the true meaning of “self acceptance.” I’ve spent so much time hating the way I looked physically, that it was holding me captive & not allowing my mind to have any kind of breakthroughs that were necessary for my mental stability. As women, as moms, we are so body obsessed from such a young age & for so long I though happiness meant changing the way I looked physically to rid my mind of the negativity surrounding that particular issue. I truly believed it was a way to fix everything. But now, I’ve realized that changing my mind about the value of my body is way more helpful & important. After I had kids, I felt this inherent need to figure out all of my body issues that have been plaguing me since I was very young to make sure they wouldn’t fall into the same trap, but my tune has since changed. I want them to see me having a healthy, at times challenging, but overall accepting relationship with my body & mind. I want them to see that they have the power to accept themselves regardless of how their measure up to others. My biggest lesson when it comes to my health, is that showing yourself love & acceptance is the first step in making better choices towards positive changes. And it’s so easily transferable to many other issues people might be experiencing, not just body issues. Positive thinking, acceptance & showing yourself love will change everything for you, it has for me!
6. You often travel with your children. Do you have any travel tips for traveling as a family?
My one simple rule for travel is to have NO EXPECTATIONS! I think when you’re travelling you want to have a great time & you absolutely will have an amazing time, so long as you don’t get stuck in having everything be perfect. You might have some tears on the plane, maybe you’ll lose some luggage, challenging times with the little ones might not allow you to check off everything on your sightseeing list but you’ll be with your family, having new experience & making priceless memories! What could be better than that!?
7. Name 3 travel destinations on your bucket list to travel with your family and why?
Bora Bora! Because of those incredible villas on stilts over the water! Plus, it just looks like the ultimate tropical dream land, so luxurious. I’d love to relax there as a family. Paris, because it’s just so romantic & beautiful. Picnics under the Eiffel Tower & so much strolling. Totally cheesy, but my last pick (right now) would be Disneyland, because I just know how much the kids would love it! I’d just have so much joy seeing all the magic in their little faces. We’ve been talking & planning it in the near future!
8. You love to cook, can you share a quick and simple recipe that you like to make for your kids?
Quiche has been such a hit lately! Ramps (wild leeks) are in season right now, so I’ll usually sauté a huge bunch of them (stem & all) with a piece of bacon or two & some mushrooms until it’s brown! Blind bake a pre-made or home-made pie shell (the instructions will tell you how long), throw the sautéed veg in, cover it with some eggs whisked with a bit of milk, top it with some crumbled goat cheese, salt, pepper & into the oven at 350 degrees for 25-35 minutes or until it’s golden brown. Let it rest for 5 mins & serve it up with a side of veggies or salad. Super delicious & easy!
9. I love your “Currently Crushing” posts on your blog. Can you share some of your current crushes right now?
I’m Currently Crushing on Birkenstocks, Netflix (Happy Endings, Mindy Project, The Paradise right now), s’mores by the fire now that warmer weather is finally here, my Soda Stream (Mother’s Day gift for the win), stove top pop corn (with dried lavender, honey & sea salt), tending on our garden (so zen) & my Fit Bit.
10. Name 5 current crushes from Minimodel Gallery.
1. The MINIWILLA PRETTY POSTER, such a beautiful reminder that I want in my home!
2. The STELLA MCCARTNEY KIDS RAINBOW DRESS for my daughter, simple & colourful!
3. The AGATHA CUB GUAVE PEACH 6 PANEL HAT for my son in the sunshine, it’s so cool!
4. The HUXBABY CROSS DROP BACK DRESS in my sons size for him to wear right now (boys can rock dresses over legging too when they look this sweet & modern) but I would totally put my girl in it next.
5. The CLOUD PILLOW IN DARK GREY for their playroom.
11. Favourite words to live by:
My favourite quote from my favourite books sum it up best for me & it always sounds better in French…
“Voici mon secret. Il est très simple: on ne voit bien qu’avec le cœur. L’essentiel est invisible pour les yeux.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Le Petit Prince
“Here is my secret. It is very simple. It is only with the hearth that one can see rightly; What is essential is invisible to the eye.” -Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince
Tania, thank you so much for this interview and for sharing your honest heart–it is so genuine and refreshing.
Photos Credit: Mango’s studio (www.mangostudio.com)