This Mama may have started on the East Coast, but she found the love of her life on the West Coast. And not too long after, she also found her inspiration for making soothing baby blankets. Jenavie managed to turn a scary situation in the NICU with her youngest son, into a thriving baby blanket company called Frankie Dean®. These ultra soft Dream Blankets™ come in 6 different themes and colors. Find out all about the benefits of her Frankie Dean® blankets, which ones her son’s love the most and how this Mom still manages to find time for self-care while running a small business.
Please tell us why you decided to start Frankie Dean®?
I first came up with the idea of our Dream Blankets™ after my youngest Frankie was born at 32 weeks and had to be in the NICU for 2 months. He was not feeding on his own for the first 4-5 weeks while he was there. One day his wonderful nurse had given me a security blanket to rub my scent on to try and help him. When this happened, he slowly began feeding more and was able to come home a couple weeks later.
After this, I wanted to get him a new lovey style blanket for home but I could not find any that I loved. So, I came up with the idea to make a shark security blanket to symbolize my husband’s love for surfing, and a mountain goat blanket for our love of skiing and snowboarding.
I designed and manufactured these initial blankets and then realized I wanted to have other styles in my line. Finally, I then came up with the others to make the line complete. While these were being manufactured, I wanted to write a goodnight bedtime book to go along with each of the blankets, to help aid in supporting healthy bedtime routine/ sleep. It all kept organically rolling from there. This is how it all started.
What benefits will people see from using their Frankie Dean® Blankets?
Some of the benefits are:
*Dream blankets™ can help foster independence and security, but also help ease anxiety and create self-worth.
*All of the blankets have black and white patterns on them. I designed them this way because babies cannot see in full color for the initial 0-12 months, and this develops eye sight, foster cognitive skills, aids in stimulation, and helps them focus.
*All of our Dream blankets™ come with a bedtime board book. This helps the root of language and brings physical closeness between parent and child. Reading before bedtime allows the body’s natural fatigue to take over which will aid into an easy transition toward deep sleep.
Do your son’s have a favorite Frankie Dean® blanket?
Yes! Dean sleeps with Charley the Cat every night after we read him Goodnight Charley. While Frankie is all about Ollie the Goat and the fun adventures he has with his mommy in Goodnight Ollie!
Do the blankets have different themes?
Berry the Shark is ocean themed
Ollie the Goat is mountain themed
Sunny the Toucan is tropical themed
Charley the Cat is a home theme
Maggie the Cow is farm themed
Nikki the Leopard is African safari themed
What did you do before you started Frankie Dean®?
I have been a fulltime stay-at-home mom since I got pregnant with Dean 4 years ago. Prior to that I was a Children’s Special Needs Counselor and Daycare Teacher.
Why did you decide to raise your family in South Orange County?
I moved to south OC a little over seven years ago from Maryland and shortly after I met my now husband. He is born and raised in California. Once I moved here, I not only fell in love, but I fell in love with this area. I never wanted to leave. It is the perfect place to raise our kids. We both love the beach, this beautiful weather, and the easy access to travel to the mountains or the desert.
What advice would you give to another Mother that has a great product idea, but isn’t sure if she should dive in?
Let go and let God take over. Don’t fear failure, if you put your heart and mind into something that you love and give it all you’ve got you have already surpassed what you need to do to start!
How do you practice self-care as a Mother of two little boys?
I don’t have a lot of time for self-care, but I make it a priority to exercise regularly, and have quite time daily. Also, I love woodworking and baking so these bring me a sense of meditation and creative accomplishment.
What is your favorite meal to make, that the whole family loves?
Maryland style crab cakes! It makes me think of my roots on the East Coast every time I make them. Also, nobody in the house ever turns down my yummy cookies, especially my husband.
What is your favorite thing to do or place to go with your family in Orange County?
We love to go to the beach, explore new parks/ local pettings zoos, and the weekly trip to Target:-)
How can other SouthOCMoms find your amazing Frankie Dean® products?
Frankie Dean® products can be found either on our website www.frankie-dean.com, on social @frankiedeankids, Faire.com, and on Amazon.