Beautiful Jacqui Saldana, the mama behind Baby Boy Bakery, and designer of our limited edition BBB x Solly Baby wrap, is a bright light. She’s mom to Ryan and Mila, author of My First Year, A Baby Journal, and creator of an inspiring corner of the internet where “people can come for delicious kid-friendly recipes and inspiration to live a loud and wild life no matter the ugly we are faced with.” Sit down with us to learn her joys, her advice and her (ah-ha!) beauty fixes. You’ll leave here with a new friend, we’re sure of it.
Do you live by a favorite mantra?
When my son Ryan passed, I stayed up late a few weeks after putting together programs for his funeral service. I was at a loss for words. Then I started to think about how our little boy lived during his three short years. The only words I wrote on his program were ‘Live Loud, Live Wild’. Now we have the program framed in our house. Those four words have definitely grown into our families mantra. We live just as Ryan would, loud and wild!
What can you not start your day without?
I can’t start my day with out coffee. Coffee is my favorite!
Please share your favorite beauty fix.
My favorite beauty fix is dry shampoo and my eye brown pencil.
What is your everyday look or go-to outfit?
An old Dodger baseball cap my husband bought me when we were dating, messy hair, white t-shirt and high rise skinny jeans or boyfriend fit jeans if I’ve eaten to much ice cream lately. I do fill in my eyebrows and bronze my cheeks if I am going somewhere. Otherwise I look like a slob!
Your favorite mother/child outing?
Disneyland. Forever it will be Disneyland.
How do you pamper yourself (when you’re lucky)?
When I get the chance I will go get my nails done. I did wear Mila in a Solly recently while getting my nails done, which made me feel like Super Mom! But honestly, a trip to the Starbucks drive thru is luxury enough. I LOVE an afternoon iced latte!
Where is your happy place?
Honestly, my happy place is laying in bed with my husband and our children. I love lazy mornings when we slowly wake up. Ryan would climb all over. My husband would prop up his legs and Ryan would slide down them. So many belly laughs laced with morning breath! Now those sweet mornings are a little more quieter, but still just as delicious with Mila looking up at us cooing. I guess I am most happy when we are all cuddled close together.
What family traditions have carried over from your own childhood?
Cooking in the kitchen with my mom is one of my most favorite traditions. It is something I did with my son Ryan and I look forward to do so with Mila. Cooking with my children is a passion of mine as I believe the kitchen can be a great backdrop for fun and learning. Cooking with Ryan from such a small age has now morphed in my ‘We Cook’ kits which inspire parents to get into the kitchen with their own children.
Do you have a favorite family meal?
Tacos! Crunchy, ground beef, extra cheese, extra avocado, EXTRA hot sauce!
What part of motherhood brings you the most joy?
Making my children smile. I’ve learned that keeping them happy doesn’t always warrant a big trip or expensive toy. The most genuine smile can grace you with the smallest of acts. I love making my children smile and laugh.
Which part of the life/motherhood/work balance do you do best? Which part do you “let go”?
It might sound awful, but I “let go” of work the most. I know more than most that these moments we have with our children are fleeting. They come and go so quickly. Your baby is only a baby for what seems like a day. I try to soak up and do as much as I can with my children, for my children. I do work, as it is a way of surviving. But living life and being a good mother is my way of thriving.
Do you have favorite parenting advice/helps for new mom friends?
Take as many photos as you can, even if you think you are taking too many. Take more. And write down your memories. You’ll want them and writing them down helps your brain remember. I have a photo of Ryan doing just about everything. From his first smile to that time he found my maxi pads and stuck them on his body like stickers. I am starting it all over with Mila. Just try to capture it all!
Tell us your “must have” parenting product.
My Solly Baby Wrap!
What’s your favorite parenting phase? Which is the most challenging?
For me my favorite parenting phase is toddlerhood. Though Mila is re-showing me just how incredible that newborn baby phase is. I think there are challenges in every phase; feeding times keep you awake, fussy baby always equals zero productivity and a toddlers strong will to be defiant. But it all balances out with their sweet smiles, laughs and the way they grasp your hand. That is the way children are built! That is why most mothers have more than one! They are just TOO good no matter what!
What, more than anything, do you want to pass on to your children?
I want to teach my children that no matter how bad you think you got it there is beauty to be found. I want to show them that it is OK to be sad, because that makes more room to be happy. I want to show my son Ryan how strong I am. I want to teach Mila how incredible her big brother was/is. I want to instill in my children the will to Live Loud and Wild!
What are you the most proud of?
The mother I have become. It isn’t easy being a mother of two children. One in Heaven, one in my arms. I am proud of my story and the way I have been able to share it with others.