I simply cannot even begin to express how overwhelmed I am with gratitude! The incredible support of our amazing community … not only locally, here in Kelowna, but our community all over the WORLD is something that can’t even be put into words. When we first started organizing the details of our VIP Lunch in support of Mamas for Mamas we started with a blank google doc and brainstormed what we wanted the event to include, how many guests could attend and listed potential businesses, amazing people, and companies who we thought might be able to help us out. We were crossing our fingers (and our toes!) in hopes that maybe a few of them would say yes to our ask.
Well, to say we were blown away by the support we received would be an understatement. It didn’t take long for us to receive emails back that were filled with excitement and ultimately said a big YES to our ask! In fact, we were even getting emails from companies, family, friends, and followers asking if they could help in some way! It was so heartwarming! THANK YOU to each and every one of you who reached out to us to offer your kind words, encouragement, and for offering to help. We see you and we LOVE YOU!
Before we get into ALL of the details of this amazing day, I first want to give a shoutout to Esther, Bruce, and Ria Kitsch for allowing us to host this event on their GORGEOUS property, Kitsch Wines! Esther and Bruce welcomed us into their home and offered the most jaw-dropping location and backdrop we could have ever asked for.
And to Team Jilly … holy man, planning this event was a TON of work and the girls had their heads down and pedals to the metal for a few straight months sorting out the tiniest of details and ensuring ALL bases we’re covered including securing our AMAZING entertainers, Dean Brody, and Aaron Pritchett and our special guest, Kaitlyn Bristowe!
They even arranged for my cousins Tori from Fraiche Nutrition, Sam, and Steph (who actually shot some of these images alongside Rachelle!) to attend and help with the event and mingle with everyone! Plus, Tori brought HER amazing team along, Victoria and Brea!
Our amazing photographer, Rachelle Beatty generously offered her time to come and shoot the entire event and Meg and Glen from One Peak Media were also there, capturing every special moment on camera so we could share a behind the scenes video with YOU!!
I also would love to give special thanks to Yuriko Larson and her team from Vintage Origami (including her incredible husband, Erik!). Yuriko was right there by our side the ENTIRE way! We honestly don’t think we could have pulled this off if Yuriko wasn’t there to lend us her creative brain, her can-do attitude, and her outstanding work ethic. Yuriko and her team made sure every detail was perfect and ultimately brought our vision to life and it turned out even more beautiful than we could have EVER imagined.
To give you an idea of just how throughout Yuriko is, she even sourced adorable lapel pins for each place setting that said: “Mama You Got This” and “You Go Girl” from Alphabet Bags and they generously mailed them ALL THE WAY from the United Kingdom!! Plus, she had stunning nametags and menus created from the oh-so-talented Emma Allen! I tell you, this girl is one of the most detail-orientated women I know and we were so honored to work alongside her!
We had the most gorgeous florals from Melinda at A New Leaf Floral which were beautifully arranged in the center of the stunning farmhouse white wooden table made by Tifini from Refined Furniture! Tifini also made the white benches and the pergola and all of these items can now be rented out for weddings and events!
Alright, let’s get to the details of the day, shall we?? As I mentioned before, we had 40 incredible guests join us for our intimate lunch … we wanted them to feel like real VIP’s so we arranged for the team at Current Taxi to pick them up in their stunning Tesla’s and drive them to the event! I have to give a special shoutout here to Jerry from Current Taxi for organizing the pick-up and drop off schedule for all of our guests … and for having the cars wait a fewwwww extra minutes when we ran over in time! 😉 LOL!
Once our guests arrived they were greeted with a welcome cocktail and their choice of Fentiman’s delicious Rose-Lemonade or Gently Sparkling Elderflower beverages! They then made their way to the photo wall to mingle and snag a few photos with me, Team Jilly, and Kaitlyn Bristowe all while sippin’ on their vino and being serenaded by the acoustic performances of Aaron Pritchett and Dean Brody!
The incredibly talented team at Start Fresh Kitchen also made sure everyone had something to snack on while we mingled before lunch by providing a beautiful plant-based grazing board loaded with delicious roasted veggies, local vegan cheeses, crackers, fruit, dips, and more! ALL of the delicious food and fresh produce was generously donated by the incredible team at Nature’s Fare!
We are so thankful for Alexa from Nature’s Fare and Jill from Start Fresh Kitchen for working together to nail down exactly what food was needed for our event and for making sure everything was as fresh as possible and delivered on time! You ladies rock! Also, to Michael from Start Fresh Kitchen who was the genius behind the drool-worthy plant-based menu that was served … everyone LOVED it and gobbled it right up!
After I had the chance to mingle and take photos with each of our amazing guests, I welcomed everyone to take a seat as it was time for our plant-based lunch to be served and another round of performances by Aaron and Dean (and another round of wine, of course! LOL!). The team at Start Fresh Kitchen was so on the ball with serving up each course and our guests enjoyed every single bite! Here’s a look at our menu:
Creamy Vegan Ricotta Toast
House Sourdough, balsamic beets, fresh strawberries, red wine drizzle
Roasted Heirloom Tomato Tart
with an arugula and citrus salad
Zucchini and Potato Pancake
Roasted + lightly smoked WTF Mushrooms
Spiced Pear Tart
with red wine poached pears, vegan pear gelato
The Cake Mama also made personalized gluten-free cookies for every guest which we arranged on their plates prior to them arriving and she also whipped up some delicious vegan macarons that were so indulgent which we served after lunch as a little afternoon pick-me-up!
During lunch, I took the opportunity to chat with everyone about why I love Mamas for Mamas so much and shared some of the incredible things that I have personally seen them do for our community! I then brought Shannon from Mamas for Mamas up on stage with me so she could provide some background on their amazing organization and at that time I also had the honor of presenting Shannon for a cheque of a WHOPPING $140,000 for Mamas for Mamas! CUE THE TEARS!!
ALL of the $140,000 was raised thanks to EVERY single person who took the time to generously donate to our online auction, to the VIP guests, and the companies who supported our event along the way. You should ALL be so proud as this is going to do WONDERFUL things for so many families in need!
It was also at that exact moment that MY mom, Justin, Justin’s mom, Melissa, and Warwick showed up to the event! It was the perfect timing and it had me so overwhelmed with joy!
After everyone was finished enjoying their lunch we took a moment to sing Fishin’ in the Dark together and we wrapped up the event with a hilarious (unfiltered!) Q&A with myself and Kaitlyn Bristowe! Once all of our cheeks were sore and our tummies hurt from belly laughs it was time for all of our guests to catch their rides home with Current Taxi … but not before scooping up their SWAG BAGS!!! Eeeekkk!!
I’m sure MANY of you followed along with my Instagram stories when we were getting the swag bags ready, but if you missed out, these swag bags were UNREAL and were valued at over $2k each!
So many amazing companies reached out to us and offered to donate their products to the bags and we had some insane products in there! Don’t worry, I’m going to reveal EXACTLY what was in the bags later today (stay tuned!) … along with a behind the scenes video of me and Team Jilly putting them all together! For now, here is a list of the incredible brands that donated! In no particular order …
Last but certainly not least, thank you to Avalon Rentals for supplying glassware, to Quail’s Gate for hosting Kaitlyn and Dean during their stay in the Okanagan and to Landeau flowers for making sure Aaron, Kaitlyn, and Dean had a beautiful bouquet of roses in their rooms upon their arrival!
There you have it! I hope you enjoyed my recap of the day! I wish you ALL could have been there with us!!
Event Videography: One Peak Media