Charliemadison Behind the Scenes

A Look Back at March 2024

Wow, when I say March was a busy month, that's no understatement. Madison and I have been working overtime in the studio on some amazing upcoming bracelet collections, four new collaborations, and summer 2024. We also hosted our very first fundraiser in support of a very worthy non-profit and featured two inspiring ladies in our Meet a Milspouse and Inspiring Entrepreneurs series. I'm not even sure how I managed to read so many books this month, but my book list was long and filled with some really great reads. Take a peek at March inside our studio and home.

March Behind the Scenes Highlights: Business

- We shared the story of Austin Carrigg, Army spouse, Mom, and the Founder and CEO of Exceptional Families of the Military, in our Meet a Milspouse interview series.

- Launched a new Empowering Entrepreneurs series on our blog in celebration of International Women’s Day. Our first feature was KJ Blattenbauer of Pretty Pep Talks.

- Treated our Community to our fan-favorite Easter Egg Hunt again this year. We loved seeing you hunt for the discount codes and grab some pretty bracelets for all your spring stacks. Thanks for shopping with us!

- Collaborated with four amazing military spouses on custom bracelets that will be released very soon - we can’t wait to share these beautiful bracelets with you.

- Hosted our very first Fundraiser Event in support of the UF Health Leon L. Haley Jr., MD, Brain Wellness Program in Jacksonville, Florida. A portion of every sale from the event was donated directly to their nonprofit organization. If you are interested in hosting a fundraiser for your organization, please get in touch with us at

This month's Community Favorite Bracelet is the March Mini of the Month - you ladies LOVED this one!

Our Favorite Customer Review of the Month:

“I have been part of the CMO family for years. I’m proud to be involved with CMO and I love the product and the meaning behind it. It has been fun to watch CMO evolve, especially since Madison has joined her mother in the company.” ~ Cheryl R.

March Behind the Scenes: Our Personal Faves

Wendy’s March Favorites:

- In the Kitchen: Made a batch of a family favorite and put half in the freezer for later - Turkey & Artichoke Stuffed Shells with Arrabbiata Sauce has been a go-to for years. In true Hively fashion, I made a couple tweaks this time (I’m known for NOT following a recipe :-)) and subbed ground Italian sausage for the turkey and just used jarred Rao’s sauce instead of making the sauce from scratch. As always, this recipe never disappoints and it makes a LOT.

- We love Science: The Frederick County, Maryland Science Fair has been part of our family since Madison started middle school. Every year, Brian would mentor Madison and Charlotte on a science project that they worked for months on, then had me scrambling the last minute to help them put the finishing touches on the display boards. Charlotte’s projects won many awards and she went on to the ISEF fairs for 4 years in a row.

Now that their science fair days are behind them, Brian and Charlotte wanted to help spark an interest in science for the kids who participate, so for the second year they have both been judges and chose several winners for the Hively Family Innovators Award giving gift cards to high school students and science kits to middle school students. It’s always a blast to attend the awards ceremony and see how excited the kids are to celebrate science - my inner science geek is extremely proud!

- Watching: We loved “Domina” - an Apple TV series about ancient Rome in the wake of Julius Caesar’s assassination and the rise to power of Emperor Augustus and his wife, Livia Drusilla. Apparently this is one of the most historically-accurate shows about ancient Rome and while we do have to imagine what the women were like since not much was written about then, I loved that this series portrayed the women as influential, although brutal may be a better description. We were fascinated by the beautiful sets/houses and the costumes…. oh my, can we bring back those gorgeous flowy dresses and strappy sandals?

- Grateful for: A lovely Easter day with Charlotte, who came home from college and helped us in the kitchen for a delicious steak, orzotto, and caesar salad dinner. We are blessed to have had a thoughtful and productive conversation about the future and her plans for school. 

Madison’s March Favorites:

- March started off pretty epic for me because I WON AN INSTAGRAM GIVEAWAY, which I would like to say has never ever happened to me before so this was a complete shock and so exciting! This giveaway was for a new activewear collaboration with one of my longtime favorite Australian Youtuber's Sarah's Day, she creates a lot of health and wellness content. With the store credit that I was gifted, I was able to get some of her new activewear pieces that I have been loving and living in the past month!

- You may have seen in our February blog post under the "What We're Currently Loving" section, I gave some links to a few new recipes I wanted to try. Well I ended up making the Deconstructed Wonton Soup recipe and it was truly so tasty! This recipe is actually made to be vegan, using a lot of vegan substitutes (like vegan ground beef) but I didn't use any of the vegan substitutes. There were also several tweaks I made to the recipe, which included 1) I used ground pork for the meatball filling, which I think gave it more flavor, 2) I used chicken broth instead of vegetable broth, 3) I added in more flavorings (more soy sauce, sesame oil, and rice vinegar than the recipe called for because the broth lacked a little flavor), and 4) I took the wonton wrappers and cut them into thirds then added them to the soup (added more than the recipe called for), would highly recommend doing this since the sheets are a little large. I would definitely recommend making this soup with the tweaks I made!

- I saw the cherry blossom trees in full bloom in Washington D.C. twice this month. They are even more pretty in real life than you see in photos online. And from what I remember this was actually my first time going to see them in Washington D.C., which is crazy considering how close we have lived to D.C. throughout my life. But if you have never seen them during full bloom add it to your list of must sees sometime in the future!

- Live music: Started off the month seeing the Tedeschi Trucks Band in Washington D.C. at the Warner Theatre with my boyfriend. Their music was very different than anything I normally listen to, however they gave an incredible performance. Every single one of their band members is so talented. At the end of the month saw Zach Bryan in Long Island with my boyfriend and his family. Even though I don't listen to country music that often, I think his concert was one of the best I have been to in a while. He has some really great songs, and he is even better live! The energy in the room was uplifting and contagious, it was such a fun concert!

- Watching: I am a little late to this series but I am on the second season of Reacher, which is on Amazon Prime. Reacher is an action packed crime drama show which is tough to predict what will happen next but will leave you hooked wanting to watch the next episode! This series is actually based on the Jack Reacher book series, which I didn't know but I am sure the books are equally good if not better. Just a warning that it can be a bit violent so if you aren't prepared for that or into shows like that then I wouldn't recommend watching.

- Grateful for: Quality time with friends and family! Had a great family weekend making lots of great food, getting our favorite pizza, and playing card games. And can't forget lots of snuggles with our dog Piper. Visited a few of my girlfriends in Philly for St. Patrick's Day. And visited my boyfriend's friends and family in New York City and Long Island. Overall, a month full of fun times and even better people!

What We're Currently Loving:

- Looking forward to the release of upcoming books by some of my favorite authors: Ruth Ware, Emily Henry, Megan Miranda, and Rebecca Serle  (Wendy)

- Watching our favorite Maryland Terps Baseball team play in person at a few home games next month

- Currently reading (Wendy): The Phoenix Crown by Kate Quinn and Janie Chang

- Getting creative with new Charliemadison lifestyle content and excited for upcoming releases for Charliemadison (Madison)

“If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero