MEET A MOM—Julie Vincent - New Canaan & Darien Moms

Meet Julie Vincent, a Connecticut native and mother of two who lives in Rowayton. A Holistic Wellness Coach and yoga teacher, Julie started a company called Hearth Wellness to “empower moms to feel their best while raising a healthy family.” Learn about her transition from the corporate environment to the wellness world, and why she loves living in town.

How many children do you have and what are their ages?
I have two kids: my son is 6 and my daughter is 4. I’m also a new dog mama of a 4-month-old mini Bernedoodle puppy!

What brought you and your family to town?
Previously we lived in NYC with a very active 15-month-old and wanted to grow our family, so decided it was time to make the big move to the burbs. I am originally from CT (West Hartford), so we decided to move back this way, while still being close enough for my husband to commute for work. We fell in love with Rowayton when we visited—it felt like such a special coastal community!

What’s your favorite aspect about being part of the community?
There are so many opportunities locally, especially as a mom, to connect with new people. Whether it’s at school, the grocery store or the beach, I’ve met some great friends who make this place feel like home.

What’s your favorite family activity to do in the area?
We love packing a picnic and visiting a local farm (Ambler and Grace Farms are two of our faves). Being outdoors surrounded by simple beauty is our happy place. I also love the opportunity to teach my kids about animals and nature!

Can you please tell us a bit about your path to nutrition and wellness? How did you first develop this interest?
I used to work in corporate marketing and loved the energy and social aspect of being in the business world, but often found myself in a state of overwhelm and burnout despite feeling “successful.” I reached a tipping point in my early thirties and became honest with myself about the need to shift my lifestyle and make some big changes. I became a dedicated yoga practitioner for stress relief and in 2014, I took the next step to become a yoga teacher (RYT 200). Teacher training had such a profound effect on my life—fueling my passion for healthy eating, movement and self care—that I decided to change careers and dive deep into the wellness world. I successfully transitioned to a corporate wellness role and built a global consulting firm’s wellness program from the ground up.

After my son was born, I found myself wanting to be present more with him, so I finally left corporate and became a stay-at-home mom and soon after moved to CT. My new role was certainly keeping me busy, but my passion for sharing my knowledge and helping others fueled my decision to go back to school to become a certified wellness coach at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition (IIN), while I was pregnant with my daughter. I graduated the day before she was born!

Tell us about Hearth Wellness and how you decided to launch it?
Hearth Wellness empowers moms to feel their best while raising a healthy family. My guidance encourages thoughtful small changes and simple organization to promote self care through nutrition, home cooking, movement and prioritizing choices that bring joy and peace to your daily life.

I launched my business with a focus on moms because as a new one myself, I could see how much all of us were struggling to take care of ourselves AND our families. I want to encourage clients and friends by setting an example and educating on the power of simple mind, body and family nutrition, movement and organization. I want moms to go from feeling exhausted to empowered!

We hear you’re launching a new signature coaching program. What can moms who work with you expect during this 12-week experience?
Yes, it’s called the Whole Self Care Experience and was developed as a culmination of my work to share with very special clients. The program pairs you 1-1 with me as your guide through a journey to sustainable self care as a mom. Together, we’ll analyze your nutrition and lifestyle habits to develop a custom roadmap for your mind and body that empowers you to feel your best and find joy in the everyday.

Clients learn how to:

  • Set realistic goals
  • Organize your week and optimize your time
  • Gain confidence in the kitchen
  • Fuel your mind, body (and family) with nourishing meals
  • Fit in fitness and movement that works for you
  • Prioritize yourself and set boundaries
  • Embrace change by recognizing and improving habits
  • Listen to your body and feel confident

I’m connecting with moms now to queue up a post-holidays start, so reach out for a discovery call!

What’s the best piece of advice you’d give parents struggling to introduce or maintain healthy eating habits for their children?
Get them involved! A lot of us do all of the work in a vacuum and expect our kids to just eat what we want them to. The more they’re engaged in the process of getting the food to their plate, the more likely they will try it! Bring them to the grocery store, take them to the farmers market, give them choices and let them make some decisions. When you’re home, let them help (even toddlers can pour and mix!) and if they’re talking, engage them in conversations about the food at dinnertime. Even dislikes can turn into a good convo about why, that will leave you with useful information for next time.

As a busy mama, do you have a favorite or go-to meal to put together for your family?
Tacos are a favorite in our house—we are pescatarian so typically shrimp, black bean, roasted veggies or eggs. We serve them family style so that everyone can make their own version. My four-year-old doesn’t eat them the traditional way yet with a tortilla, but loves avocado, cheese and raw veggies so she makes a “snacky plate” with the toppings and everyone is happy!

As the holiday’s approach, what will be on your menu? Anything special you look forward to preparing?
We really enjoy hosting for the holidays and cooking all day! Being pescatarian, we skip the turkey at Thanksgiving and make a homemade soup (my husband’s family’s recipe), maple Dijon salmon, harvest salad and a pecan sweet potato casserole. For Christmas eve, I make spinach and cheese baked stuffed shells and eggplant “meatballs”, plus we love smoked salmon quiche for Christmas morning brunch!

What’s the best advice you’ve gotten from another mom?
“You’re doing enough.” Being a mom can be intense! Give yourself (and your family) a break sometimes and let go of the strive for perfection.

Do you have any advice for other working moms, or single moms, considering entrepreneurship?
Make sure to have systems in place for support. That could mean business and organization tools, a mentor/coach, or fellow entrepreneurs to bounce ideas off of. It’s not easy, but I believe it’s worth it!

How do you unwind when you need some “me time?”
I love to take walks by the water listening to a podcast or talking with a friend. Bonus if they’re during sunrise or sunset! Cooking is also therapeutic for me, so I love to put on my favorite playlist and make a recipe I’ve been wanting to try while sipping tea or some wine.

Anything to add?
A lot of moms I meet with are overwhelmed by the change they seek and feel like it’s unattainable, so they avoid making any changes at all, or quit after an unsuccessful attempt. If I could say anything to motivate them it would be: You deserve to feel great. Take your vision of the woman you want to be and break it down into daily habits and routines. Start by showing up for them one by one and celebrate the small wins – they will become big ones with time and commitment!

We love supporting local businesses. Favorite places in town to do the following?

Have dinner with/without kids: We love ordering in dinner from Pontos TavernaGreenologyPokemoto, or Sails. With the kids, we enjoy going out to Bar Taco, Pine Street Concessions, or Parlor Pizza.
Grab a drink with friendsRowayton Seafood or Bodega
Have a date night: You’ll find us at GraybarnsKawaniOkoDon MemoThe Inn at Pound Ridge or Rowayton Seafood.
Spend time together as a family indoors/outdoors: We like Ambler FarmGrace FarmsStamford Nature CenterSkyzone. And we love day trips to Kent FallsStorm King Art Center, Hudson or Rhinebeck.
Shop for yourself/shop for your kids: Darien Sport ShopShe La LaMorley, and Homegoods! For the kids, I love Egg and CT Kids Consign!
Spa/salon (or anywhere you go to treat yourself): Love the experience at To & From
Grab coffee: You can find me hanging out at Neat a lot, or taking a drive to the Mercantile at Graybarns
Any hidden treasures or other favorites you want to share?  For lunch, I love the Blue Wave at Barvida, the soups at Browne + Co. and the amazing salads and veggie sandwich at Greens on the Go!

ABOUT HEARTH WELLNESS
Hearth Wellness empowers moms to feel their best while raising a healthy family. Julie’s guidance encourages thoughtful small changes and simple organization to promote self care through nutrition, home cooking, movement and prioritizing choices that bring joy and peace to your daily life.

The Hearth Wellness signature program, the Whole Self Care Experience, pairs you 1-1 with Julie as your guide through a 12-week journey to sustainable self care as a mom. Together, you’ll analyze your nutrition and lifestyle habits to develop a custom roadmap for your mind and body that empowers you to feel your best and find joy in the everyday. For more details, visit www.hearth-wellness.com and follow Julie @hearthwellness for recipes, tips and daily motivation!

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