In Memory Of Joanne Martinez

Joanne Martinez

Last month, one of our contributors, Joanne Martinez, tragically passed away from COVID-19. Joanne was a light, both to us here at OC Mom Collective and to her friends, family, and all that knew her. If you’ve attended any of our events, you’ve probably had the pleasure of seeing her and her mom/BFF Grace at them. She was sweet, friendly, and always seemed to have a smile on her face. Joanne leaves behind her beloved husband Todd and young son Ethan, whom she adored and was so proud of in every way. We will all miss her immensely.

Joanne wrote a total of 22 posts for us over the years, beginning with her first in April 2018 to her last in June 2021, shortly before she got sick with COVID. As the Managing Editor, I’ve had the privilege of editing her posts and seeing her grow in confidence and skill as a writer in front of my eyes over the past three years.

She wrote about topics as diverse as camping tips, finding gratitude, recipes, gift ideas, natural living, DIY hacks, and more.

Joanne gave great advice and parenting insight. I never said this enough to her, but I really enjoyed everything she wrote. She had a gift for choosing interesting topics to write about, and sharing her knowledge in an easy-to-read and likable tone. These are writing gifts you can’t always teach, and she had them innately.

Joanne Martinez has left a legacy here at OC Mom Collective, which we wanted to pay tribute to with this post. Linked below are all the articles she’s ever written for us, in case you missed them the first time they were published or would like to read them again.

If you can read only one, let it be Joanne’s second-to-last post. It’s entitled “How My ‘Word of the Year’ Went From Intentional To Rooted” and is her reflection on what she learned during the pandemic, which began right before her 40th birthday, and the direction she wanted the rest of her life to go in as a result of deepening her appreciation for it.

The last paragraph of this post is what stays with you the most and bears repeating here. We find some comfort in knowing she had this epiphany about life before hers tragically ended too soon, and hope you find some comfort and inspiration in it as well:

“I have learned that true self-care for your soul actually comes from putting others first. That true happiness doesn’t come from the perfect house, the perfect car, or even the perfect day, because any day with growth is a great day.”


Complete index of Joanne Martinez’s posts:


How To Help Your Friend’s Direct Sales Business Without Going Broke Yourself: “We all have that one friend. Some of us have a few, or ten. They are constantly filling your feed with sales and ads and tips and tricks and silly games. Or maybe you’ve re-connected with an old friend on Facebook and she hasn’t sent you a message, but she’s sent you an invite to her special enrollment deal.”

6 Alternative Ways To Support Your Child’s Respiratory Wellness: “The flu was not messing around this year. You probably already knew that because it seems like no one was safe. In a home that rarely relies on medication (over-the-counter or otherwise) dodging even the common cold can be tricky.”

I Was The Perfect Mom And Then…I Had A Kid: “How could this happen? I swore this would never be my kid. I swore that my kid would always be so well behaved and pleasing him would be so simple. I swore my child would never be the kid having a meltdown for no reason. These things only happen when you aren’t doing it “right.” You see, before I had kids I was the perfect mom.”

Everything You Need To Know About $1 Discount Movies This Summer: “Taking kids to the movies can seem like a daunting venture when you think about their attention span and the current cost of a regular movie ticket. No one wants to pay $12-$15 to test the cinematic waters with their 2-year-old. I was very excited to learn about our local theaters having $1 discount movies.”

How To Make Your Own “Goldfish” Cheese Crackers At Home: “The recent recall on Pepperidge Farm Goldfish Crackers got me thinking, there must be recipe for those who want to make this cheesy treat with simple ingredients. I wanted to find a recipe free of sugar and preservatives. The best part about making this cheese crackers recipe at home is you can make them any shape you want.”

5 Natural Deodorants I Like (And Why You Should Make The Switch): “This past year I have been really cleaning out my “toxic” closet. One of the biggest yet easiest changes I made was deodorant. Conventional deodorants are usually made with ingredients that can be extremely harmful to your health. They contain parabens, synthetic fragrances, and aluminum, to name a few.”

A Minimalist Guide To Gift Giving For The Holidays: “While some parents aren’t bothered by the overwhelming amount of bright colored plastic decorating their homes, some parents will do a secret dance when you bring their child a gift that doesn’t add to the clutter.”

Why I Wanted My Baby’s Gender To Be A Surprise: “When I found out I was pregnant I immediately started thinking about whether or not I wanted to know the gender. There are very few times in life that we truly get to be surprised.”

Easy, Last-Minute And On Plan: DIY Valentine Chocolates For (Almost) Any Diet!: “There are very few people who don’t like chocolate. And even if you don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day you are still open to eating the treats that come along with this “holiday.” As the holiday draws nearer I am seeing regular and diet specific posts asking for ideas for Valentine’s Day.”

An Honest Letter To All Moms On Mother’s Day: “Dear Moms, Our day is almost here. Have you decided what you want to do? I mean, what you REALLY want to do. Have you told your family?”

2 Ingredients, 1 Slow-Cooker, and Countless Variations: “If you’re on Pinterest then you know that there so many slow-cooker recipes, but if we’re being honest, most slow-cooker recipes are just different variations of the same types of ingredients.”

Take Your Lunch To-Go In A Bento Box: “The bento box is a great way to encourage healthy eating habits away from home, make lunch exciting and reduce waste. We use them in our house to bring our own food for outings, teach our toddler independence, and give him a sense of control. They’re also perfect for school lunches!”

4 Helpful Apps For Moms That Will Get You Through Life: “‘There’s an app for that.’ The phrase that over time became truer and truer. What a time to be alive! There really is an app for anything. I’ve come across a few apps that have more than filled a need in my life.”

3 Delicious And Easy Friendsgiving Recipes To Make For Friends: “Contrary to its base word, Friendsgiving can occur anytime during the holidays, not just Thanksgiving. It can even extend into the new year to accommodate busy schedules. The usual form is to have a potluck. And so I’ve put together my go-to Friendsgiving recipes to help make your meal easy and delicious.”

Finding Gratitude In A Time Of Chaos And Confusion: “The world is upside-down right now and it’s easy to let fear and anxiety take over. Of course, these feelings aren’t helpful. Finding gratitude can help turn those feelings of helplessness into hope. I’ve always been a glass half full person so this practice comes more naturally to me.”

The Best COVID-19 Time Capsule Printable For Kids: “There’s no doubt that we are in the middle of an historic event. This COVID-19 pandemic/quarantine is not only the first event of its kind in at least 100 years, but for many of our kids it’s their first major global or even national crisis. While we are feeling all the emotions and maybe even going through a little grief, they are going through it, too.”

Low-Carb Keto-Friendly Pizza Recipe For Movie Night: “I took to the internet. And there it was, my solution. Crustless Pizza Casserole. It might sound unsatisfying but it isn’t. It’s actually pretty amazing that you get all the pizza flavor without the high carb count.”

Ikea Play Kitchen Hack: “If you have a toddler or preschooler, chances are you will be getting a play kitchen at some point or you already have one. There are so many options for kitchens to buy. But what if you could customize your kitchen or even make it to match your home kitchen?”

The Best Not-Your-Typical Christmas Spotify Playlists: “Music is an integral part of celebration and maybe, for your home, having these unique playlists will encourage you to have at least 1 day of non-stop Christmas tunes.”

Kitchen Secrets – My Favorite Kitchen Essentials: “I love to cook, but I love a successful meal even more. Having small adjustments or additions help me make a recipe mine. Even the best recipe calls for a personal touch. Here are a few things I keep stocked in my kitchen to ensure I am prepared to personalize my food.”

How My “Word Of The Year” Went From Intentional To Rooted: “A routine that fully supported my goal of being more intentional was no longer. So how could I possibly become more rooted in my faith when I no longer had that support?”

10+ Awesome Camping Tips From An Amateur Camper: “This past year we all found ourselves yearning to get away but very limited on where we could go. One of my favorite “fruits” of quarantine is the influx of camping families.” 


We love you Joanne. Rest in peace, and may your memory be a blessing to all those that knew you. 

In Memory Of Joanne Martinez PIN

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Follow me on Instagram @EcoFriendlyMama, Twitter @EcoFriendlyMa, and Pinterest @EcoFriendlyMama! Though I was born and raised in New York City, I've lived in SoCal for over ten years now and am proud to call this beautiful and diverse place my home. My husband and I have a son and baby daughter (whom I was 9 months pregnant with when this photo was taken!). Prior to becoming a mommy I spent several years in feature film publicity and acquisitions for Miramax and later as the Creative Executive for Hilary Swank Productions before seguing to the music industry where I did Online Communications for the GRAMMY Foundation and MusiCares. In my ample pre-parenthood free time, I also freelanced as a script analyst and screenwriter. I am fortunate now to be able to devote all my time to my family, but I still love to write so am thrilled to have the opportunity to be a part of this blog! I am a foodie, avid traveler, environmentalist, preschool board member, and unabashed Disney nut. I can also be found writing about green parenting and eco-conscious living on my personal website,