Partykins // My Little Valentine

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I’m so fortunate to have friends with kids around Carter and Mason’s age. It makes for great entertainment for both the kids and the moms when throwing little parties so we try to have as many get togethers as we can. It also gives me a great excuse to use the plethora of crafting ideas that I come across on Pinterest. 

We had a little Valentine’s Day party earlier this week. Once upon a time I would have tried to make all the delicious treats myself, but now with a rambunctious toddler and an infant that is just about on the move, it doesn’t leave me much time to break out my dusty Kitchen Aid mixer. All the sweet treats were store bought. I did however make the chocolate dipped strawberries. Only because it’s super simple to do and I had a little helper who was eager to sprinkle on the Valentine’s jimmies for me.  I also made all of the decorations: Pinwheel backdrop, banners, cupcake toppers, milk box favours and party hats. I don’t have to time bake during the day, but I do usually get 1-2 hours to myself an evening, after the boys are tucked away in bed and before it’s time to veg out on the couch with Mr. Smith.

Carter insisted on being in charge of quality control, so he was sampling most of the sweets before our guests arrived. I think it was pretty clear that he approved. Happy Valentine’s Day!
Photography & Styling // Jenny Smith

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Partykins // Photography: Annelie Klein

Partykins // 9Months Non-Alchoholic Sparkling Bubbly

Babiekins Magazine | 9Months Bubbly

Babiekins Magazine | 9Months Bubbly

Babiekins Magazine | 9Months Bubbly

With the holidays come an array of parties and celebrations and what woman doesn’t want to be a part of that? But when you have a baby in tow it’s easy to feel left out when the room is filled with clinking glasses and loud celebrating cheers. Carrie Marvin, mother and founder of 9 Months, didn’t let that stop her from enjoying the celebrations. She is the inspiration behind 9Months, a non-alcoholic sparkling blend designed just for the mothers-to-be who want to raise a glass and partake in the toast.

Carrie, you created 9 Months non-alcoholic sparkling bubbly a couple years ago so you and other woman in similar situations wouldn’t feel left out of the party scene. Can you elaborate a bit on how you came up with the idea?
I’ve had an entrepreneurial mind since I was very little. I was (and still am today) coming up with ideas and brainstorms on how to make life a little more enjoyable. When I came up with the 9Months concept, I was at the age where myself and everyone around me was pregnant and I saw an opportunity to provide expecting mommies with a festive and safe beverage for social events! 9Months also celebrates pregnant women – because we certainly deserve it!

I would imagine the tastings would be the best part of the job! How involved are you with the process of making your non-alcoholic sparkling bubbly?
The tastings were absolutely the best part of coming up with my sparkling bubbly. I first tried to find a winery domestically to carry out my idea, but I didn’t find one that I felt understood my vision. That’s when I looked at international options, and was so happy I did because not only did I find a winery in Southern Australia that was excited about the idea, but, the product they made surpassed all my expectations of how I wanted 9Months to taste. The winery sent me samples and we decided on two flavors to start with: a dark sparkling that is made with a blend of red grapes and a Golden Muscatel Grape that makes up our white blend. Both are sweet, delicious and very refreshing!

When you purchase a bottle of 9Months a percentage of the sales goes directly to the March of Dimes, a charity near and dear to your heart. Do you feel this sense of “giving back” is an underlining motto for your company?
Giving back and donating a portion of each sale to March of Dimes is one of the most important parts of my company. I couldn’t be more excited to donate to such an inspiring and important charity. The idea for 9 Months came to me while I was pregnant in 2012 with my first daughter. I was living in NYC, going to events and parties but feeling so left out of the cheers and toasts or specialness of having a celebratory beverage. I knew I had to do something to make other pregnant women feel included. Then, when I lost my daughter at 39 weeks, I knew I wanted to incorporate the “giving back” element to my brand. I was devastated and angry by our loss and was very close to giving up on the 9Months concept, but, instead of giving up, I thought to give back. Providing resources to a cause dedicated to healthy pregnancies is near and dear to my heart.

We can’t imagine what you went through and our thoughts and prayers go out to you and every woman who faces a similar situation. You are now in a position where you balance motherhood and a career with a new blossoming company. Do you ever feel challenged by this lifestyle?
Balancing motherhood and a growing business has been one of the hardest juggling acts I could have imagined, but, I know myself and for me, being busy is how I am happiest. I find I’m my best when I have a full plate! It forces me to focus on the most important things first and then prioritize appropriately to achieve everything. Of course, that all can blow up in my face when my little one needs me, as I drop everything in a heartbeat for her! But, all in all, I love it. I wake up excited to see what the day will bring me.

Now let’s talk about these sparkling wines! Do you prefer red or white?
That’s always such a hard question for me! I really do like them both, BUT, if I must choose a favorite, I do like the white just a tiny bit more. It resembles the taste of champagne, which I missed terribly while pregnant!

What are the distinct flavors of the sparkling bubbly?
The red sparkling has a very natural and crisp taste with a light finish. The white is also very light and refreshing with a beautiful aroma that adds to the flavor. Both are unique and, in my opinion, do not resemble anything you would buy in a grocery store.

What are some great scenarios where you think a bottle of 9 Months would be a perfect drink to offer guests?
Everywhere! The opportunities are really similar to any social or celebratory gathering, ranging from a party to a wedding or a backyard bbq! It’s also an amazing gift for baby showers, gender reveal parties or simply for your co-worker or friend who recently announced their pregnancy!

Tell us about the future of 9 Months. Do you plan to add to your portfolio of non-alcoholic sparkling bubbly any time soon?
The future of 9Months is bubbly and bright! We are looking to include a new flavor by spring so be on the lookout!

Babiekins Magazine | 9Months Bubbly

Thank you Carrie for joining us today and cheers to a new year!

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