Video Interview with Pampers Ambassador & Glamamom-To-Be Vanessa Lachey (& Giveaway}

As she nears the end of her pregnancy, preps for her upcoming shower, and baby-proofs her home for the arrival of her little man, Vanessa Lachey has partnered with Pampers to reveal her top mom-to-be must-haves, including the newly packaged Pampers Soft Care Wipes, which are hypoallergenic and useful far beyond diaper changes.

I had the opportunity to speak Vanessa earlier this week about how she’s feeling and what she’s doing to manage pregnancy so gracefully in the glare of the public eye. As you’ll hear, she was absolutely lovely to chat with and I’m happy to learn from those who worked with her behind-the-scenes that she’s as sweet off camera as she is on.

WIN IT!  As a little take-away, I have a Pampers Prize Pack for one Glamamom reader including: a package of Pampers Diapers, a tub of Pampers Wipes, and five packs of sample/travel-size Pampers Wipes.

TO ENTER: Leave a comment below letting me know you follow Glamamom at least one of the following ways: confirmed email subscription, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram.

One entry per person. I’ll randomly choose a winner in a week.

UPDATE: Congrats #2, Hanan!

{I was not compensated for the interview or this post.}

Hollywood Girl Alison Sweeney Dishes to Glamamom About Exercise, Eating Healthy & the Beloved Sami Brady

Thanks to Yoplait, who has challenged me to swap my unhealthy cravings for one of 33 flavors of Yoplait Light low-calorie yogurt as a member of their “SWAP Team,” I had the opportunity to chat with Alison Sweeney, host of The Biggest Loser, author of The Mommy Diet, and star of Hollywood Girls Night and Days of Our Lives, to learn her tips and tricks for staying fit and healthy, and balancing her food and exercise regime as a busy mom.

I met Ali last year at the 2011 Heart Truth’s Red Dress Collection and it appears that her commitment to living a healthy lifestyle is as strong as ever.  Have you seen the April cover of Shape Magazine?  This is advice clearly worth reading…

First, I want to congratulate you on looking absolutely phenomenal. I read that you recently completed the LA Marathon, which is such a huge accomplishment, and your April cover of Shape Magazine is so gorgeous and inspiring.

Thank you!

You had your daughter, your second child in 2009, not too long ago.  What has your weight loss journey been like with respect to exercise and incorporating better food choices?

The most important thing for me was making the commitment to do it. We know the keys to being healthy are eating right and working out but you have to make those choices again and again, and reaffirm that you do want to be healthy and feel good about yourself every day, then back it up at every single meal. For me, my schedule being what it is, I’m so grateful to “The Biggest Loser” for teaching me so much about being healthy. It’s important to learn to make educated decisions about how to take care of your body even under a tight schedule. For example, I know now that if I don’t have a lot of time to work out, doing something is better than nothing. I have a schedule of short cardio classes I can take and quick exercises I can do in my dressing room in between scenes that get me through busy days.

I’ve also learned how important nutrition is. What’s helped me most is arming myself with snacks and food during the day so that I’m not at the mercy of a cafeteria or a snack machine. I just had an experience today where an actor, one of my loving and considerate co-stars, brought in a whole plate full of red velvet cupcakes to work this morning. Of course I was eying them like everyone was so to avoid temptation I had a flavored yogurt and I got the same sweet satisfaction but for 300+ fewer calories. Having alternatives with me helps me to make better choices.

One of Glamamom’s Facebook friends wants to know if you have any tips for getting rid of belly fat.

Experts have told me that targeting specific areas isn’t as successful as we would like it to be. For moms, women who have had babies and have gone through pregnancy, you have to address your body almost like an injury that you’re rehabilitating. Your stomach muscles were injured from carrying that weight. I remember the first sit-up I did after I had Ben. I went to the gym and knew it had been a long time since I did sit-ups and thought maybe it would be harder or I’d be able to do fewer than I’m used to and I did one sit-up and literally fell back laughing out loud. Ever since then, I’ve embraced the idea that you have to treat it like an injury and give yourself the time or you’re going to hurt yourself.

You have to go about getting your stomach back by concentrating on each muscle group and going slowly. It’s a lot more complicated than just sit-ups. I do a lot of specific exercises you can look into that have been helpful to me in toning my core from the inside out like planking, tricep push-up, pull-ups with your legs, and squats that use stomach muscles. I detail everything in my book, The Mommy Diet.

Do you have any favorite online resources for maintaining a healthy lifestyle?

I have a Pinterest page that I use for recipe inspiration but unfortunately it’s not that healthy (laughs). I love Shape’s tips for healthy eating and Yoplait Lite’s Facebook page that has awesome dessert recipes that swap yogurt for more fattening ingredients. I make a mean parfait myself.  “The Biggest Loser” has a great site also. I bring all of those to my own site [alisonsweeney.com] and will even go onto the Food Network to look for recipes and figure out ways to make it healthier. So even if it’s a decadent Emeril recipe that I love, I can maybe incorporate the seasonings and the flavor he’s going for with less butter.

You mentioned the positive impact working on The Biggest Loser has had on you. What is it like to be personally involved with all of the contestants? I bawl my eyes out every episode I watch. I imagine it must be very emotional for you.

It’s extremely emotional. It means so much to me and I love being a part of it. I love that these people are really changing their lives. And I love that they’re really doing the work. They’re just knuckling down and making it happen and it’s amazing to be a part of. My experience running the LA Marathon taught me first hand why it’s so emotional. I did not expect to have those feelings. At mile 21, I cried. It was hard and I was soul-searching. You learn things about yourself you never knew. I now have a much deeper understanding of why these contestants get so emotional when they’re pushed that hard and a greater appreciation for what Bob has created over 12 seasons. I get it now.

For viewers at home, that don’t have the same resources as contestants on The Biggest Loser, what would you say is the first step to living a healthier lifestyle?

The first thing is not to wait. Everyone always talks about the diet that will start on Monday or next week or after the holidays. Also, for me, the biggest change came when I changed my expectations of the results. If I had set out to be in a bikini on the cover of a magazine, I feel like I would have failed immediately because I’d be setting unrealistic goals for myself. The same goes for looking at celebrities who are really thin and comparing yourself to them. My feelings would be hurt when I would fall behind and not be able to achieve these unrealistic goals I set for myself.

Things really started to happen for me when I decided my goals were to be healthy and take care of myself better. All of a sudden, the world opened up to me and at every meal I would readdress those feelings. I would sit down at a restaurant and think to myself, “I want to leave here feeling good about myself, not guilty and filled with regret.” As delicious as a decadent meal is, I would always leave with these horrible feelings of guilt and then beat myself up about it. When I finally realized I just want to feel good about the choices I’m making, and walk up the stairs without breathing heavy, go on a run and feel like I can accomplish a sport I want to play, or chase my kids around all day, that’s when I started seeing results. Realistic and achievable goals are the key to feeling good about your progress. I still have a glass of wine and I indulge from time to time but overall I try to make good choices that I can feel good about.

Tell me about your new show Hollywood Girls Night. I see you’re hanging out with some of my other favorite celeb mamas like Ali Landry.

I love her! She’s so awesome, It’s just that…a bunch of awesome women just hanging out. Some of us have known each other for a really long time. Last night’s episode with Daisy [Fuentes] and Patty [Stanger], I’ve known a very long time. I just didn’t know them well or that we had so much in common. We’re all social and we have a great time when we’re together but you don’t really get a chance at Hollywood events and on the red carpet to bond and connect with other strong women. These dinners have been so successful in helping us all open up and get to know each other better and we allow the cameras in to see more of who we are as people and get insider gossip and silly stuff. Like any girl’s dinner. We also talk about the meals we’re eating, give recipes for the cocktails we’re drinking, and give fashion advice.

I have to ask you about Days. Several of my Facebook friends are asking for some insight into Sami Brady. You’ve played her since the early 90’s, why do you think she keeps “sabotaging her own happiness?”

That is an excellent question! And it makes me laugh because that’s exactly what she does. She’s one of those people that always shoots herself in the foot and speaks before she thinks. I think a lot of it comes from the fact that she wears her heart on her sleeve, something I find really endearing. She’s so forthright about her feelings and that gets her into trouble. She says the wrong thing a lot. It’s her biggest strength, and her biggest weakness. She’s fun to play!

Sounds like you already have a lot on your plate but is there anything on the horizon that you’re looking forward to?

I’m taking my family on Spring Break. We’re getting out of Dodge and having some family time, which I’m really excited about. I always have a bunch of projects I’m working on. I direct now on “Days of Our Lives” which has been a real treat for me and way to branch out.

{Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post. I’m a member of the Yoplait Light “SWAP Team,” for which I receive compensation and complimentary product to review. All opinions expressed herein are mine and that of Alison Sweeney. Photos via Shape.com}

UNFORGETTABLE SET VISIT

Have you guys been watching the CBS crime drama Unforgettable?

On an unseasonably frigid morning last month, I had the chance to see Poppy Montgomery and Marilu Henner film a scene together on the waterfront set in Long Island City.

The series stars Poppy Montgomery as Carrie Wells, a former police detective who has hyperthymesia, a rare medical condition that gives her the ability to remember everything. It’s not just that she doesn’t forget anything – she can’t forget anything, except for one thing: details from the day her sister was murdered years ago.  Since then, Carrie has tried to put her past behind her, but she’s unexpectedly reunited with her ex-boyfriend and partner, NYPD Detective Al Burns (Dylan Walsh), when she consults on a homicide case.  Despite her conflicted feelings for Al, she decides to permanently join his unit as a detective solving homicides – most notably, the unsolved murder of her sister.  All she needs to do is remember.

Marilu Henner plays Carrie’s estranged Aunt Edie, with memory issues of her own.  Henner actually has the gift of hyperthymesia in real life!  There is nothing she doesn’t remember.

Here’s the final cut of the scene we got to see and a sneak peek at tomorrow’s episode. Montgomery and Henner are such professionals.  Can you even tell it was freezing and that they’d been standing outside all morning?

In between takes, we defrosted in their trailer and chatted with Henner and Montgomery about motherhood.  Montgomery travels back and forth from New York City to Los Angeles, where her husband and 4-year old son reside and admits she has difficulty creating a balance and often feels guilty as a working mom.  She also mentioned that she gained 65 pounds while pregnant!  A girl after my own heart.  Although, you’d never know it with how amazingly fit she is now.  Henner has 2 teenage sons and swears they’re not spoiled.  Her advice?  A guilty parent is a bad parent! 

On a follow-up call, when asked about hyperthymesia and whether she considers it a gift or liability, Henner responded:

I’ve always been thrilled to have it. I consider it a total gift. You know, I’m writing a book that’ll be out in the spring and it’s called, “Total Memory Makeover, uncover your past, take charge of your future.” And it’s all about helping other people tap into their autobiographical memories. And some of the things that I’ve done over the years to really kind of refresh and preserve and, you know, things that I – different little things that I used to do with the kid and as a result, I know that a lot of, you know, a lot of my memory is a question of nature and nurture. So I’m excited to share some of these things with people in my book. But I have never ever, ever thought of it as a liability. I’ve only thought of it as this wonderful thing that I didn’t even realize other people couldn’t do. You know, it was always surprising to me that I would say, “Oh, don’t you remember the time we blah, blah, blah,” and then go into specific details. And people would say, “What? How did you remember that?” And I’d say, “Well, how could you not? We went through it,” you know. So I’ve never considered it anything but a tremendous gift and just the way it its. You know, not – never a liability.

So what do you think?  If you could chose to remember every detail of every experience you’ve ever had, would you?

{Unforgettable airs Tuesday nights on CBS. Special thanks to Selfish Mom and the One2One Network for including me in this opportunity. I was not compensated for writing this post. I received a Visa gift card to cover my travel expenses. Final photo courtesy of Mama Goes Natural.}

OFF THE ICE WITH PEGGY FLEMING

This cold and flu season, Robitussin® is providing Simple Acts of Relief by touring the U.S. with mobile relief stations providing free massages, beverages, and phone charging stations, among others things.

You can enter the Instant Win Game & Sweepstakes for a chance to win prizes such as free Robitussin®, pre-paid gift cards, and more. Every time you play, you’re automatically entered for a chance to win the $100,000 grand prize.

Olympic and World ice skating champion Peggy Fleming has teamed up with Robitussin® for the campaign and I had the pleasure of catching up with her at Chelsea Piers’ SkyRink last month to discuss boys, wine, and our colorful last names:

What a great partnership. Why were you interested in joining Robitussin® for the “Simple Acts of Relief” Campaign?

I was really brought in to celebrate people who have my kind of last name…that sounds like one of the symptoms that Robitussin® treats.

Did I tell you my last name is Seiman?

{Wild laughter}

That’s NOT one of the symptoms!

There was a joke that went around after the Olympics because I wore a costume at the Winter Games in ’68 and my mother made it in chartreuse green. The joke went around, “What’s green and skates? Peggy Fleming.” I didn’t repeat it very much but now I’m embracing it.

We’ve had our fair share of colds and flu and we’ve turned to Robitussin® for relief. If you have congestion or a cough, it’s fantastic. We have 2 boys, all grown up, and three grandsons, so we’ve passed on the message. Sometimes you have to keep going. When I’m working, often times I have to work through being sick. It’s great to have an over-the counter-medicine to help. They’ve repackaged Robitussin® so that whatever your symptoms are, you can look on the packaging and clearly see which one is the right relief.

Robitussin® is also doing Simple Acts of Relief and giving away 100,000 prizes and $100,000.

That’s major relief!

I understand you have a winery out in San Jose where you reside.

Yes! We’ve been a bonded winery for 7 years. The winery is called Fleming Jenkins. Jenkins is my married name. My husband is a retired dermatologist and we planted a vineyard 12 years ago as a landscaping project. We had an extra acre and one thing led to another and we got more interested. He retired from his practice, had spare time, and simply wasn’t ready to slow down. It’s been a very interesting and fun business. Very friendly too. People share ideas and it’s great. A little bit more work than we thought but it’s worth it.

We ship to New York too and donate $2 of every bottle of Victories Rose to Breast Cancer Research. We’ve donated $56,000 so far. I’m a grateful survivor and we’re making so many advancements in medicine, techniques, and awareness and we’re saving a lot more people and that’s what all these wonderful campaigns are all about.

You look amazing. I’m glad to hear you’re feeling so well. Do you still skate? What do you do to stay in shape?

I don’t skate regularly. I just do it for recreation and different events but I don’t perform. I host a lot of skating shows but mainly I just workout. I do my cardio, I do my weight training, and I try to do it at least 4 or 5 times a week.  If I do it just 3, then that’s still great. I just try to be consistent and always watch what I eat because I can exercise till the cows come home but if I’m not watching what I eat I’d never see the results. It’s common sense and a balancing act. Life is a balancing act. Being a mom and having a career and still being yourself and finding time to take care of yourself. I just learned over the years how to do that. My schedule used to be even more crazy than it is now and somehow I was able to do that. It’s prioritizing and having a standard by which you live. Being healthy is a lifestyle. It’s not a crash diet. It’s not, “Next month I’m going to get into shape.” It’s something I think about on a daily basis.

Any advice on creating that balance/standard?

I think you always have to have time for yourself. You can be a better wife and mom if you really take care of yourself first. You’ll have more energy and you’ll feel good about yourself. Just keep exploring who you are and other interests. Your kids will be proud of you. They want to see you take care of yourself. You’re a role model to your kids and how they should take care of themselves. I think kids really respect that. They’re absorbing everything and learning. They see more than you think they do. Taking care of yourself sets that standard for them.

You were a World Champion at such a young age. What happens to that competitive spirit when you move on ? How do you harness all that energy?

I always want to do the best with everything I do from keeping my house neat, to being proud of my groceries! I still explore who I am and try to inspire my kids and my husband and myself and friends and share that with other people. It’s how I’ve always been. I’m interested in life. I’m still exploring. I’m having fun and I’m still growing.

You have a lot of men in your life: two sons and three grandsons. They must all adore you. I have a 2-year old son and a male dog so my household is pretty testosterone driven too.

We specialize in men and they’re adorable. I’m from a family of four girls. I’m number 2. When I had my first son, I thought, “What do you do with a boy?!” I learned and it’s been great. He lived in Vermont for awhile but has since moved to Colorado. He’s in the snowboarding industry.

Wow, you guys sure know winter sports! The Winter Olympics must be a very big deal for your family.

I took him to the Vancouver games. He was working for Burton back then and on Shawn White’s line of clothing. It was fun for me because skating isn’t necessarily the cool sport so I got to do both. I was part of the Presidential Delegation and got to go to the Opening Ceremony and hang out with the Vice President for a week so that was pretty cool. Snowboarding was the “it” ticket and we were right there. I’ve never seen competition live that. It’s amazing. I’m glad I didn’t see my son snowboarding like that all these years. Shawn White made it look so easy.

Do you keep in touch with the skating community?

Oh yes. I just did a show is Rapid City, South Dakota. It was a tribute to the Beatles on ice and the original Broadway cast of Rain was performing and they had skaters and I hosted. I love it when we have musical acts plus skating. I’m leaving from here to go to Moline, Illinois to host another show with Nadia Komenich and Bart Conner. It’s a combination of gymnastics and skating.

Those are my two favorites! Figure skating and gymnastics are what I stay home for.

When you see the gymnasts, they have the rings set out on the ice and the skaters just choreograph around the apparatuses. It’s just spectacular with the spotlights and music and interaction.

I’m lucky hanging around all that creativity and the energy is good for me. Just get out there and participate in life! I’m trying to get people out to see more shows. They have a big impact on kids. And it’s a great challenge for me to bring that energy and make sure it translates to television.

Well, enjoy your time in New York. Do you have any plans while you’re here? Autumn in New York is magical.

I have an entire day off! I want to go down to Ground Zero, just to see it and see the memorial. I had an event here a month after September 11th and I remember going down there and that smell and all that ash. The memorial looks so beautiful on television but I want to see it with my own eyes. And of course, a little bit of shopping. There’s just so much wonderful energy here.

{I was not compensated in any way for this post.}

BEAUTY BUZZ | ON SET WITH DR. OZ & TIPS FOR LIVING A HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE

Did you know your metabolism suffers if you get less than 8 hours of sleep? Or that drinking skim milk can lead to weight gain?

Those are just 2 of the many eyebrow-raising weight loss facts I learned from Dr. Mehmet Oz during a recent visit to the 30 Rock set of his daytime talk show, The Dr. Oz Show, for a taping and roundtable discussion.

The show we taped airs tomorrow (November 7th) and offers a ton of informative tips for losing weight and the reasons weight loss becomes more challenging as we age. If you don’t follow the show, Dr. Oz partnered with Weight Watchers to create a contest called “Dr. Oz’s Transformation Nation: Million Dollar You,” inviting viewers to take seven key steps to weight loss and healthy living and is challenging them to lose 40 pounds by spring. As if a healthy lifestyle isn’t enough, there’s $1 million up for grabs.

Much of what I learned came as a complete surprise.  Sure I know it’s harder to lose weight as you age, I’m experiencing that first hand as I’ve found it impossible to shed my remaining baby weight despite maintaining a fairly consistent diet.  Turns out there’s a scientific reason for it and Monday’s episode divulges the secrets.

The episode also features beauty segments with hair makeovers and beauty secrets from India so be sure to check it out.

What I appreciate most about doctor Dr. Oz’s approach, is that he takes complicated medical jargon and transforms it into relateable explanations for his audience, and using his platform to spread awareness and inspire people to live happier, healthier lifestyles.

After the taping, we had the opportunity to sit down with him for an intimate discussion.  He could not have been sweeter, posing for photos with each of us, insisting we get a copy of his book, “You Being Beautiful,” and addressing our most pressing concerns.  Here’s a few of the questions and answers that I thought you would most be interested in:

Dina from BabyCenter asked, What is the tie between sleep and health?

According to Dr. Oz, the brain craves four things: sleep, sex, water, and food.  If you don’t get enough of one, you make it up with more of another.  If you don’t get enough sleep, reproducibly you will crave carbohydrates.   It’s what your body will naturally do.  Furthermore, according to a recent article in The New York Times, people who don’t sleep well have more heartaches.

That doesn’t bode well for most of us considering the average American sleeps 6.9 hours but needs closer to 8.  These figures do not include those who are pregnant or raising young children. If you don’t remember dreaming, you are sleep deprived.  You need to get to light sleep.

Dr. Oz also said he doesn’t set an alarm to wake up but rather to go to sleep.  Great tip!  Have you ever tried that?

Napping does count but that’s light sleep, the restorative sleep is different and most important.

Maria from The New York MOM followed up with, What can I do to avoid the mid-afternoon slump?

If it’s doable, nap.  It can be as simple as 20 minutes where you lie down and close your eyes, even if you don’t fall asleep.  That little bit of restful period is the most effective thing for that mid-afternoon slump.  Dr. Oz also recommends a green drink or green tea.  Green tea has the quarter of the caffeine and can give you that boost you need.

I was relieved when he mentioned that caffeine is okay in low amounts at the right time, because that’s my go-to.  But he warns, If you can’t sleep, don’t have caffeine in the afternoon.

Serena from Mama Goes Natural inquired, How to pass on a health-conscious mentality to children.

Dr. Oz reminded us that all children have a lot more taste buds. They’re biologically hardwired to avoid bitter foods. Children will slowly mature their taste buds. As they get older and lose taste buds, they’ll be more receptive to tastes like broccoli. Foods that have no added sugar are what kids should be eating. Fruits are great. Your task as a parent is to slip in foods little by little.

I did a cleanse earlier this year and was contemplating trying another so I was intrigued when Shari from My Judy the Foodie asked: Are cleanses healthy and a viable way to lose weight?  Do you endorse a cleanse?

According to Dr. Oz, most people go into cleanses already malnourished, so you have to be really thoughtful about your nutritional status before you go on a cleanse. You may be overweight but you may be nutritionally depleted. I always have  people ensure they’ve really eaten as well as they can and as much as they want, good things, for at least a couple of days before they start their cleanse. The cleanse is not to lose weight, the cleanse is to cleanse you. It’s primarily directed to your liver which is the primary detoxing organ of the body. I do believe in cleanses. I think they help reboot your taste buds give you the steam to help you power forward.

Dr. Oz has his own 48-hour cleanse that I want to try.  It’s not designed for weight-loss, although he says people usually do lose weight, and you can actually eat!  The shopping list is on his website, which I’m finding is a great resource for lifestyle information.

Too bad there isn’t a little pocket version of Dr. Oz that I carry around all day to remind me to eat breakfast and get to bed on time.  But awareness is key and I’m thankful to have heard these tips face-to-face.

Is any of this news to you?  What small lifestyle change could you make that would have a big impact on your overall well-being?

 

{Special thanks to Selfish Mom and the One2One Network for including me in this opportunity. I was not compensated for attending or writing this post.}

COCKTAILS & CONVERSATION WITH BETHENNY FRANKEL

Big City Moms and Parenting Magazine hosted a little soiree at Moomah Cafe on Monday to toast Bethenny Frankel and her adorable daughter Bryn, who grace the cover of the November issue of Parenting:

I interviewed Bethenny at a spa event earlier this year and was excited to see her again for Skinny Girl cocktails.  She was polite and punchy, mingling with guests and posing for pictures.  Her camera crew from “Bethenny Every After” captured every detail so maybe we’ll make it into one of the episodes next season. In the meantime, here’s a transcript I did of some of the Q&A:

I heard you’re raising Bryn a vegetarian. Do people give you flack for that?
I feel like I’ve gotten a little flack for that. The reason is, I have eaten more of a vegetarian diet. That’s when I feel better. And for some reason, when you have a baby they’re so pure and they’re so healthy…she eats lentils, she eats brown rice, she eats Indian food. It takes effort to get them to try things and mix other things but I just felt weird about cooking an animal. I don’t know why…all the hormones. If she’s at school and she wants to eat something, she’s going to eat it and I’m not going to be picky about it. But right now we’re home and it’s our environment and she does eat everything else and she weighs what she’s supposed to weigh, I like it. She’s so healthy and that would be the ideal thing for me too. I’m like 80% but if I’m at a restaurant I’ll have a bite of steak if I really want it. That’s the thing, everyone wants to be so extreme and make these rules about it and call someone out, ‘Wait a minute, you just had a bite of steak!’ I don’t know what I am. I don’t know what she is. All we’re doing is the best we can to make her as healthy as possible. We eat organic at home. I buy that. But when we’re in a restaurant she eats what’s in front of her. You just do the best you can. That’s my way. Just try and add balance.

What’s your favorite skinny girl drink?
My new favorite is the white cosmo. I really like it. They’re my babies. You have one at a time. You favor them then the next one. When White Sangria came out I said, ‘Oh my God.’ They’re all good. They’re kind of like vintage bags. Margarita is like a vintage bag. You pull it out and you’re like, ‘Oh my gosh this is great! I haven’t worn this in a while.’ They keep coming. The next one will be March.

Any hint on what it is?
It’s tropical. It’s like a vacation.

Any plans for expanding your family? (yes, someone actually asked this)
I think so. If you asked me 6 months ago I would’ve said, ‘I don’t know.’ I’m leaning towards it, I’m thinking maybe.  Not going on some crazy campaign and doing headstands. Goal: have sex more, which we’ve been doing lately and if you get pregnant , you get pregnant. I’m turning 41 in about a week or so…You have to get me on a good day.

Do you think you want to go for a girl again?
Yeah.  Little girls are the best.  I just like the girlyness of it.  [Bryn] plays make-up and jewelry and I just love that she’s so girly. I love it, she loves it.

What do you find most surprising about being a mom now that you’ve been a mom for awhile?
I didn’t have a minute because of my work and because my office was inside my house but [with motherhood] you really don’t have a minute. And the weirdest thing…my husband was away with the baby and the dog for one night and it was like, you felt like you had aftershocks from Vietnam or something. You’re just not as relaxed, ever. There is no time that you’re ever relaxed. When I was single and didn’t have a baby, I would just hang out.  On a Sunday, I would look at old pictures with a glass of wine, turn on music and dance in my room by myself, which I did. It’s odd to not ever have a moment where you’re not thinking about someone else.

Are you friends with any of the Housewives?
I’ve seen Sonya from time to time. I actually called Alex last week just to touch base. I wouldn’t say we’re good friends. I don’t think to connect with them that often but there’s a mutual respect going. It was a different time, a different place. I’m grateful for it.

What’s your favorite part about raising a child in New York City?
That we don’t always have to drive a car. I like the fact that you just take a stroller and walk to a restaurant for lunch and you have a shopping cart too. I like that the park is nearby and I can take her to restaurants. Every day’s an adventure when you walk out the door in Manhattan. There’s a lot of variety.

Do you have a favorite activity?
Major dance parties. She loves to sing. I get in the bath with her. I had one person Tweet me that’s weird but I take a bath with her every night and I love it. She looks forward to it and it’s sweet.

What’s your favorite baby product?
Pampers Baby Wipes (note: Bethenny is a Pampers spokesperson).

Does Bryn take any classes?
She’s not enrolled but we went to some Citibabes classes when she was younger. We come here (Moomah Café) but we haven’t actually taken a class yet. We also just went to the new Children’s Museum that just opened.

Glamamom: You recently said something to the effect of, “money is irrelevant” to you. But for better or for worse, your daughter is going to grow up very differently than you yourself did. How do you plan to keep her grounded in a “Hollywood” environment?
We won’t do the show probably for much longer because in the next 6 months to a year she’ll be aware of what’s going on. We make decisions we wouldn’t necessarily make it we didn’t have Bryn. We’re pretty down to Earth. Jason comes from a really humble upbringing and we’re both pretty frugal and sensible. She’ll get to experience so many incredible things that a lot of people will never get to experience. She’ll get to experience charity and giving back and seeing what it means to be fortunate and how to help other people. I think we’re good parents. We’re attentive and we spend so much time with her. We just do the best we can but we’re aware of it. I don’t get bothered that much. I get bothered by things written about me but people aren’t chasing after us like we’re Brangelina. The people who are constantly getting photographed, want it. You just don’t go to certain places. We know on the weekends where to go and where not to if we don’t want to be followed by photographers. It’s definitely going to be a challenge though.

4/10/12 UPDATE: The event was featured on last night’s episode of “Bethenny Ever After” and I have a petite cameo!  Here’s the only frame where I’m NOT shoveling chips and guac into my mouth:

{I was not compensated for this post. I received a gift bag for attending the event.}

PAMPERS LIMITED EDITION PRINT DIAPERS & VIDEO INTERVIEW WITH ROSIE POPE

This Memorial Day, Pampers is releasing the cutest limited edition seasonal print diapers that combine utility and aesthetics so our little ones can feel as fashionable as they are comfortable in their biggest wardrobe staple, their diaper.

Pampers Limited Edition Prints for Cruisers and Swaddlers will be available in an array of designs for both boys and girls, including floral and polka dot prints for girls, and argyle and toy car print for boys.

As part of the launch, Pampers has teamed-up with celebrity pregnancy concierge, maternity designer & star of BRAVO’s “Pregnant in Heels,” Rosie Pope. I had a chance to speak with her earlier this week and we chatted about everything from the latest trends in maternity-wear, to her favorite family spot in Manhattan, to the controversy she has ignited with some of her advise on “Pregnant in Heels.”

Note to self, don’t schedule interviews for after a wine lunch with Kelly Ripa and Tom Colicchio or you’ll use the words, “um,” “totally,” and “awesome” and enunciate “concierge” like you were raised in the back woods of France.

WIN ‘EM! Want to win a pack of Pampers Prints for your babe?  Leave a comment below that you do and I’ll randomly pick a winner next Friday, May 27th.

UPDATE: Tiffany is getting a pack of Pampers!

{I was not compensated for this post. I will be receiving a pack of Pampers Limited Edition Prints for review.}

CAUSE FOR CELEBRATION

Sebastian was sick all weekend.  He ran a low-grade fever, didn’t sleep well, and consequently was miserable.

We found out on Monday that he had his first ear infection.

I feel awful that he’s in pain.  When I think about it, the anxiety builds until I have to remind myself to breath and divert my attention to something else.  I’ve never experienced this kind of ache before and the fear sometimes keeps me awake at night.  My thoughts race from some dark place imagining all the bad things that could happen and are happening in the world.

Being a parent is without question the most vulnerable experience imaginable.  The love is indescribable, the concern, unwavering.  It’s inconceivable that there are parents living with the constant fear that their child won’t get better.  But there are.

I am deeply touched by organizations like St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital that never turn a family away because of their ability to pay for treatment.  The work of St. Jude’s staff is nothing short of miraculous, saving and giving hope to children and their families.

Marlo Thomas & Jill Seiman

It was with great honor that I took Sebastian to meet Marlo Thomas, daughter of St. Jude’s founder Danny Thomas, and Maxine Clark, founder of Build-A-Bear Workshop, to celebrate the launch of their partnership program, Cause for Celebration.

Guests who schedule a party at any Build-A-Bear Workshop store across the country have the option of adding an additional $10 donation to their party to benefit St. Jude’s research. In honor of each guest’s donation, Build-A-Bear will send a $10 Build-A-Bear gift card and personalized card signed by party guests to be presented to a St. Jude child at a party held for them in the hospital when they reach a milestone in their treatment.

Here’s the description from Ms. Thomas herself and a look at the adorable “Marlo Bear:”

 

As part of the morning’s festivities, Sebastian and I had the opportunity to sit down with both Ms. Thomas & Ms. Clark to discuss the program.  I’ll never ever forget this interview with Sebastian quietly sitting on my lap:

Glamamom: What does it mean to you to carry on what your father started? Why is it so important?

Marlo Thomas: I hadn’t really intended on doing it.  My father always said that it wasn’t our promise, my sister, brother, and I.  He said, ‘When I’m gone I don’t want you kids to think you have to take it over.’  But as soon as we started visiting the hospital, they call it the ‘St. Jude fever,’ once you go there it’s so completely irresistible. You’re meeting moms and dads who came just terrified and now they have hope in their eyes. Their children had death sentences from other cities, literally death sentences being told they have 4 months to live. I met one mother who said to me that she’d already picked her child’s funeral music. Imagine as a mom what that would do to you? Then she heard about St. Jude by going on the web.

No matter what, if someone gives you bad news about your kid, go on the web and type in the disease and the names will come up. A lot of times it will be St. Jude but it could be someone else. What you really want to do is find out who’s doing research on the disease that your child may have.  Don’t accept these naysayers, just know that there is some help somewhere. About 48% of our children now come because their mothers and fathers go on the web.

Maxine Clark: Some people can say you’re mixing something that’s really fun with something that might be sad but the fact is that cancer that happens to children doesn’t know any socio-economic division, it just happens and we want parents as much as possible to know about the wonderful services that St. Jude’s has if they ever need it or if they know someone that should ever need it.  We’ve all heard about it over the years but as Marlo says, until you go there and get St. Jude’s fever, you don’t really know what the possibilities are. It’s almost like a theme park for children with this terrible disease.  The way they treat them so special as if they’re on an adventure that’s going to find them a new life, which they were told they wouldn’t have.

We’ve heard year after year that mothers want things for their kids to do that aren’t always about the child, that might be about somebody else besides the child.  Having a birthday party at Build-A-Bear is a fun experience but now there’s away to give back. It gives a chance for another child to have a birthday celebration of their own. It’s a chance to learn at a young age that you can do something for somebody else at the same time.

Sebastian was also invited to make a special St. Jude Bear, which he took very seriously.

Here he is giving his bear a heart. Future heart surgeon?

Cause for Celebration

Whatever he becomes, I hope he’s compassionate and turns his fear into acts of courage.

{I was not compensated for this post.  For more photos, visit Glamamom on Facebook.}

Moms Who Rock | Debra Wattenberg, MD

I had the great opportunity to interview Debra Wattenberg, MD, a top New York City dermatologist, wife and mother of 3, and Director of Scientific Affairs for The Oxalosis & Hyperoxaluria Foundation, for the first of Glamamom’s Moms Who Rock feature.

Dr. Wattenberg makes regular appearances on The Today Show, CNN, LX New York and The Mike and Juliet Show and her magazine and newspaper credits include: Glamour, Good Housekeeping, Oprah, Cosmopolitan, Teen, Glamour, W Magazine, Woman’s Day, Allure, New Woman, Men’s Health and The Daily News.

(1) Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with Glamamom. I think readers will be very interested in gaining insight from such an accomplished woman as you, especially your take on maintaining a work/life balance. Some days, I forget to feed the dog. How do you balance it all and still make time for yourself?

Being organized is the key to getting everything done. Organization is crucial. I don’t leave anything for tomorrow that I can do today. I also multi-task all day long. I make appointments for the kids between patients, I eat while opening the mail. I return all calls immediately so that nothing piles up. In addition, I think it’s key to have a very supportive husband who participates in raising the children. That’s probably the biggest asset.

(2) What about motherhood surprised you most?

I am always surprised at how much fun I have spending time with my children. All 3 of my kids are interesting to be with and I love watching each of them develop into adults. Each stage of life brings new and exciting challenges but also such interesting and fun times. I am also surprised at how often I sound like my own mother. I catch myself and laugh!

(3) You manage a successful medical dermatology practice, skincareRX. Skin care and anti-aging are super hot topics right now. In a society obsessed with youth, what’s your stance on anti-aging cosmetic procedures?

A good skincare routine should start young and then be adjusted as you age. I am a big fan of anti-aging cosmetic procedures. Not all procedures are for everyone so it’s really important to see a professional that can discuss your issues and determine the best procedure for your skin. Chemical peels, Botox, Restylane and Juviderm are all great procedures but they are not for everyone and they will not correct every skin issue.

(4) What’s your most important skincare tip?

Wear sunscreen every day.

(5) If you walked into a pharmacy with only $5, what personal care item would you buy?

Cetaphil cleansing lotion or Aquaphor healing ointment. Cetaphil is a great cleansing moisturizing product that can also remove makeup. Aquaphor can be used as a moisturizer as well as a lip balm and can be put on cuts and scrapes.

(6) Was it always your dream to be a doctor? Why dermatology?

Yes, I always wanted to be a physician. My grandmother was sick when I was growing up and I was inspired to become a doctor back then. I chose dermatology because it allowed me to work with people of all ages and combine medicine and surgery. I really enjoy performing minor surgical procedures as well as diagnosing medical issues by looking at the skin.

(7) What is the genesis of The Oxalosis & Hyperoxaluria Foundation and what has been the most rewarding experience from your affiliation?

My son was born with a rare genetic kidney and liver disease. He is missing an enzyme in his liver that allows the kidney to breakdown calcium and oxalate. As a result, he develops kidney stones and has recurrent kidney issues.

My husband and I become very involved with the organization when our son was diagnosed. Since then, we have helped to raise money and awareness for the disease and the organization funds the majority of research for the disease. Helping the families of children with the disease to understand that they are not alone is the most rewarding part of being a part of the OHF family. It is very scary to have your child diagnosed with anything but a rare disease can be so much more frightening because no one has ever heard of it. We try to help the families understand and take control.

(8) What are the 3 most important values that you hope to instill in your children?

Honesty, integrity, and compassion.

(9) What’s on your “Bucket List” / what are your future goals?

I would like to travel more, specifically in Africa, Asia, and India; become fluent in a foreign language; write a book; and host my own TV program.

(10) What’s your favorite place to eat in NYC?

Anywhere downtown. I love to try new restaurants every time I go out. I don’t like to repeat unless it’s fantastic. Some of my favorites include: Morandi, The Waverly Inn, and Minetta Tavern.