Cityline Featured Blogger: Tenille Lafontaine from Feisty, Frugal & Fabulous

Tenille's blog is her online home for all the things she loves, namely her family and saving money!

There are so many fabulous bloggers out there, and we want to highlight them on Cityline.ca. We’ll be profiling different lifestyle bloggers from month to month — they might write about food, fashion, beauty, décor, parenting, entertaining, gardening, you get the idea! For June 2013, we’re putting the spotlight on mommy blog Feisty, Frugal & Fabulous. Run by Tenille Lafontaine, the blog is Tenille’s online home for all the things she loves, namely her family and saving money! Here’s our Q&A with Tenille:

When did you start Feisty, Frugal & Fabulous and what was your inspiration behind the blog? How did you come up with your blog’s name?

I started my blog in 2008, shortly after my second child was born.  I had been a stay at home mom, at that point, for four years, and in that time had accumulated a wealth of money saving tips, tricks and strategies.  I would often email friends and families with a deal or website that could help save money – the blog became a place for me to condense this information in one place.  I had absolutely no idea that Feisty, Frugal & Fabulous would turn into what it is today.

The name describes me.  You know those “pick three words to describe you” personality questionnaires?  That’s me.  I was born Feisty (just ask my mom or any of my aunts who remind me of my tumultuous infancy and toddlerhood!), I had become a Frugal mom based out of necessity in a single-income family, but at the end of the day I’m a Fabulous girly-girl and love pretty things and won’t give that up just because we may have to cut back.  Where there’s a will (and a coupon, and a discount website, and a garage sale) there’s a way!

feisty-family

On your blog, you post about a variety of different topics, from sharing family stories, to posting recipes, to showcasing great giveaways – all from the perspective of being a mom. What are your favourite types of posts to write?

Truthfully, my favorite posts are the ones that are the hardest to write!  I love sharing stories, experiences, or my opinion on a story in the news.  The problem is that I backspace so much and am careful with my choice of words – the internet is an interesting high school cafeteria sometimes.  If someone misinterprets your words, it can turn into a tsunami that you didn’t intend.  Yet, at the same time, sometimes sparking great discussion is worth the risk.  I like sharing my not-so-stellar parenting moments, like the time my 3-year-old cussed like a sailor or, most recently, when I was a mad-woman running down the street because my 2 year old walked out the door when I was in another room.

I’ve also been building up my Recipes page steadily and working on my food-photography skills.  I get excited when I find a new recipe and it turns into a keeper!

feisty-muffinsWhat do you hope readers get from visiting your blog?

Oh! Wow, this is a hard question! I hope readers enjoy my writing and keep coming back.  I try and bring readers a mix of everything in my mommy-life; coupons and deals, recipes, product reviews, giveaways, travel, and commentary on parenting situations.  I suppose I’d like my readers to find a place – you know in that ten minutes you have during nap time before you need to throw in a load of laundry and maybe even pee before the kids are up again – to read about things relevant to their lives too.

Tell us about a few posts that you’re particularly proud of and want to share with Cityline.ca readers.

Some of my favourites over the years? It’s like choosing a favorite child, you can’t do that!  Here are a few that I love, but equal to all the rest.

Our Disney Wonder Mexican Riviera Cruise was an amazing experience for our family – and when my children started to realize that perhaps mommy’s blog meant more than staying quiet while she finished writing her third post of the day!

My third child was a c-section surprise.  I was completely unprepared, and this should have been my first clue to the adventure my third child would take me on.

All parents cringe at the things their children say sometimes, and we just hope it doesn’t happen in public.  Luckily, this happened while still in our van; until I blogged it and shared it with the world.

Being on the Cars Land Grand Opening Red Carpet, and casually (!!!) bumping into Andy Garcia.

I just wrote this post in May about raising compassionate kids, that is sparking some great discussion.

feisty-disneyWhat are some other blogs you love reading?

I love the wit and snark and genius of Jenny at The Bloggess and Jeni at Highly Irritable (are all genius writers of wit named some variation of Jen?).

Amanda at Natural Mommie inspires me with her DIY beauty while juggling two tornadoes, otherwise known as boys.  She writes about turning mommies from eco-weak to eco-chic and while I don’t entirely know what that means, her posts have made me read labels more and drink mint and cucumber water, so that’s a win.

Lena at Listen to Lena is a lifestyle blogger in Toronto that writes about fashion, beauty, travel, and being a mom of two little boys.  Her influence came after the blog name, a case perhaps of  “dressing for the job you want to have, not the one you currently have?”  However it happened, Lena’s influence among moms in not only Toronto but Canada has not gone unnoticed.

Cheryl at The Beautiful Side of Hectic writes about her life as a mom of two girls – one with cerebral palsy and one without.  Her candor and heart come through on her blog posts and instagram photos sharing both her daughter’s struggles and triumphs!

Amber at Parenting: Illustrated with Crappy Pictures cracks me up with her crappiness.  Who knew stick-figures were the perfect medium to bring to life the everyday parenting stories that we all can relate to?

What’s your top advice for other bloggers?

Oh wow, that’s a tough one!  Do what you love and love what you do.  If you start a blog to write about something you love, but quickly change your content to suit your readers or to keep up with the Joneses, you will quickly lose interest and it won’t be fun anymore.  If you want to blog seriously, as a job, then treat your blog as your job and give it that same dedication.  Ask questions, research, learn.  Conferences are a great place to meet other bloggers and learn, but if you can’t attend one look for groups or forums online.

We want to hear from you! Do you know a blogger we should feature on Cityline.ca? Maybe it’s you! Email us at submissions@cityline.ca and include “Cityline Featured Blogger” in the subject line. And don’t forget to include a link to the blog! Look forward to hearing from you!

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Cheryl

Tenille is a great writer! Not only is she successful with her own blog but she’s a great help to other bloggers that are looking to become successful as well. I like her “tell it like it is” personality. Great feature!

June 03, 2013 at 10:50 am
Nicole W.

Woohoo! Yay Tenille! 🙂 Great answers.

June 03, 2013 at 11:01 am

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