This post is a sponsored post, I received free products and gifts in exchange for this blog post. All opinions and reviews are my own.
My girlfriends and I have been friends since we were children, even as far back as preschool for some of us. We have maintained our friendship throughout the years and now our children are the best of friends! I am so lucky to have such an amazing circle of friends in my life with such a strong bond. But I have to admit, since becoming moms it is challenging to carve out the time to spend kid-free with friends. To be honest it almost never happens. But us moms have to make it happen and more often.
Life is short and can change in an instant, so do not feel guilty making those dinner dates, or mini getaways with your girlfriends. It's good for you and for your family because you will feel like a new woman getting in some good laughs and uninterrupted time with your friends. That being said, last year my best friend and mom of 2 was diagnosed with Stage IV Breast Cancer with Liver Metastasis. She was told that this type of cancer is not curable but only treatable. This beautiful friend of mine is a smoke-show, a 10, she turns heads wherever she goes. She is the healthiest out of us all (sorry ladies) she eats super healthy, works out on the daily. Her diagnosis was the most devastating and shocking news she has ever been faced with in her life! What's even more scary is she never felt sick, she felt fine, but knew her body and felt a lump in her breasts. She was faced with a horrifying prognosis. It is still hard to wrap my head around as I type this, it is maddening! Without going into too much detail she recently had 2 cancer free scans - yes you read that right! Remember when I told you this cancer was not suppose to ever go away. Well, it has. For now, she continues to move forward each day, maintaining a positive can't stop wont stop attitude, with hopes for her next scan to be cancer free!
Going through this past year with her has put so much of a perspective on life. It reminded me of how fragile life is and that tomorrow is never promised, I know, I know, it sounds so cliche. But seriously, it couldn't be more true! It has showed me to be thankful for each day and to not take things for granted. It has also taught me to not sweat the small stuff, or at least try to (I am so bad at that). This best friend of mine is the STRONGEST person I know, both physically and mentally. She never once ever complained during any of this process, she maintained a positive failure is not an option attitude. She never even looked sick to me even on her darkest of days after chemo treatments or sleepless nights she looked like her normal beautiful self. Her courage through this nightmare has brought all of us girls even closer than we were before.
I had the idea to get us all together and have a night out, like we use to before we were mom's. I keep seeing a trend on "self care" in the blogosphere and how it's super important to take time for yourself, whether it be getting your hair done, nails, a retreat what have you. But lets be honest, there is not enough time in the day when you become a mom. With a never ending to-do list we certainly do not make it a point to go out enough together. Each time my friends and I finally do carve out the time to get together we all make a pack that we need to make it a monthly thing, but that has yet to happen.
I sent a group text to my girlfriends back in February asking if anyone would be interested in staying the night at Foxwoods Resort Casino. I hate group texts, HATE! 5509877 text later we finally agreed that everyone could stay the night in June. JUNE.... are you kidding me? I guess that's what happens when you try to get 11 busy moms together on the same night. Geeze! Even though our night out wasn't for a few months I could not wait and IMMEDIATELY started planning our night out!
When I started planning our night I decided we needed swag bags. You know, like the celebrities get at the award shows. It was totally and utterly necessary. I started hustling and quickly had amazing swag bags filled to the brim with gifts for each and every one of us. Boy were we spoiled. Thank you to all of the brands for gifting us our amazing goodies!
Thanks to Foxwoods Resort Casino we were able to have two gorgeous rooms. We were lucky enough to stay at the Fox Tower portion of Foxwoods. The Hotel is conveniently located to EVERYTHING. We literally took the elevator down and we were where ALL of the action was. The restaurants, clubs, shopping and gambling were all steps away once the elevator doors opened! I highly recommend this hotel if you stay at Foxwoods Resort Casino. You can thank me later.
Once we arrived at the hotel we had some light bites and beverages in the room. OneHope Wine gifted me a bottle of wine for each swag bag AND they gave me THE MOST GORGEOUS bottles of bubbly to get the party started, 3 of them to be exact. They were such a hit! One of my friends kept the empty bottles because they were so freaking gorgeous! Before we left our hotel rooms and started our night, I handed out our out of this world swag bags. To say the girls were happy with all of their lavish gifts is an understatement.
Have you ever heard of OneHope Wine? If you haven't, do yourself a favor and check them out! You can thank me later!
Are these not the most beautiful bottles of bubbly you ever did see? My pictures do not do them justice. They are just amazing! They even have mini sparkly bottles. Yes. Please! Their mission is even more impressive than these beauties as a portion of their proceeds go to varying causes.
Elevator Selfie. Clearly we don't get out much.
We ate an AMAZING dinner that I cannot stop thinking about at Red Lantern. The food was out of this world, In fact I told my husband he needs to take me to the Boston location immediately. Now that I think of it he still owes me. Clearly he didn't get my sense of urgency when I told him. Dinner was my favorite part of the evening. Omg, I sound so old admitting that. We all got to talk with zero interruptions and taste our food. We took our time and ordered items off the menu the whole time we were there. We all got to have conversations and laughed until we cried while the food and bevs kept flowing. Need I say more?
Obligatory bathroom selfie. I vaguely remember these happening on the regular in our college days.
The food was OUT OF THIS WORLD!
Red Lantern has a festive upgrade you can add to your meal for a birthday. For a small up-charge you get this fun signage that normally says "Happy Birthday" it also comes with a slice of cake for the birthday boy or girl!
After dinner we all gambled a bit, I love love love playing black jack. It's so fun! I always search the floor for the lowest minimum and I set my super small budget and play, once my money is gone I am all done.
After we lost all our money we went to Shrine Nightclub to drop it like it's hot... errr I mean...dance the night away! Thank you Anthony for the VIP treatment and no lines no waiting.
We had so much fun! It was so desperately needed.
The moral of this story is make time to spend time with your friends. Life can change in an instant so enjoy it. You may have mom guilt, and also be so overwhelmed with life, but make it happen! It's necessary.
I want to give a huge thank you to all of the sponsors who made this night a reality! These brands should be so proud of the people who work for and represent them. I connected with some amazing new contacts that I hope to keep in my network as I continue to grow this blog. I seriously cannot believe the generosity and the outpouring of YES'S my little mom blog received! Thank you!
Ok, now lets get to the swag bags. I will post all of the details along with each and every item that was in our swag bags in this post so keep reading. You do not want to miss it, trust me!
Each and every one of my girlfriends got one of these bad boys! I bought the black totes on Amazon you can find them here (Affiliate Link). I purchased the tags, ribbon and tissue paper all at Michael's.
Each swag bag included the following items in the image below! Be sure to check them all out as each and every single thing was a hit!
1. OneHope Wine: We each got a bottle of Rose or Chardonnay. I cannot say enough good things. They are the perfect GIFT for the wine drinker in your life. OneHope also gifted us the most GLAMOROUS glitter bottles of bubbly. You will be sure to make a memorable statement when gifting the sparkling bottles that even come in mini sizes! They tasted as good as they look. And as if they could do things better, check out their mission, they are truly a world class company!
2. Hebert: Hebert's gave us the most luxurious box of chocolates! If you are local to the Boston, Massachusetts area they have a number of family and kid events at their Candy Mansion so be sure to check them out.
3. BootayBag subscription undies: We all got a super cute bag with a beautiful pair of undies! These subscription bags come with two pairs of undies and if you so choose you can upgrade your subscription and also order the most beautiful bralettes! Be sure to follow them on Instagram.
4. Aviate hat: Each hat has a three letter code representing airports of major cities! I get compliments on my hat all the time, in fact someone just stopped me on a beach on Cape Cod and asked me where I got it. They have matching kid size hats too, SO CUTE! They also just launched a sun glass line so be sure to check out their sunnies. Be sure to follow them on Instagram!
5. Adrin Dietra apothecary products: Beautiful handmade apothecary soaps and body butter.
6. Living proof hairspray: This Boston based company has the best hair products ever! I am telling you, this hairspray is THE BEST I have ever tried! You need it in your life. You can thank me later!
7. No More Nail Gels manicure set: Terry from No more Nail Gels gave us Color Street manicure goody bags that included a manicure and buffer. The manicure kits are a no dry nail polish perfect for us moms! Check out her website and join her Facebook page and group to learn more!
8. Nordstrom: Nordstrom gave us a beautiful goody bags full of amazing samples! Yes please! What mom doesn't love to pamper herself once in a while in some of the top name beauty products?!
Thank you again to all of the amazing people and brands who made this happen, you truly made my vision a reality! You were all such a delight to work with and I cannot thank you enough!