It’s babies’ first Hanukkah around here this week, and I’m feeling very jolly.
First of all, it’s been a week of nonstop holiday parties, both of the family-friendly and heavy-boozing varieties. Beyond that, I (mostly) honored my vow to myself to taper off my write-aholism in the last couple weeks of the year, so that I could find time for such things as braving Whole Foods on a rainy afternoon, followed by lighting a fire in the fireplace, and making homemade matzoh ball soup and latkes for my guy. That night, the first night of Hanukkah, he held a baby in each arm while I lit the candles and my heart exploded. It’s been quite a year.
Overall, I’m celebrating the abundance in my life, and I’m so very grateful to be surrounded by so much love. I hope I did something good in a past life to deserve all of it.
Of course, a few awesome new material things around holiday time are the icing… Read more…
Last holiday season, I’d just crossed the second-trimester threshold, my pregnancy was public, and I was feeling so full of joy and promise at such a festive time of the year. (That’s us at the St. Regis Princeville in Kauaii last December — I realize it doesn’t read “holidays” per se, but it’s how we do it.)
This year, help the mama-to-be in your life celebrate such a momentous and special time. From pregnancy pampering products and services, to maternity fashion, to thoughtful ideas for the baby-on-the-way, I put together my (unscientific, but real-mom tested!) list of amazing holiday gifts for pregnant ladies. Even if—or especially if—that fab lady you’re buying for is you! Read more…
I’m feeling very inspired this morning, with wanderlust dribbling down my chin like so much infant twin drool. That’s because I have a guest poster with the most stunning stories to tell: (In addition to being my dear friend and fashion inspiration for 20 years,) Starla Estrada is the Africa travel expert for GeoEx. As such, she has journeyed through 17 African countries — on foot, 4×4 vehicles, quad bikes, kayak, canoe, hot air balloon, helicopter, and any number of small aircraft. (Can I have your life? Kthxbye.)
Here, Starla provides her bucket list inspiration for places to travel in Africa before you die — it’s the first in a two-part series on Africa travel from the total insider, with photos that will make you drool. Without further ado:
Last Thanksgiving was one for the books.
Just two days before, we’d learned I was pregnant. We figured there’d be no better time to tell our families than on a day devoted to gratitude and togetherness, and on a day when both sets of parents would be in the same room.
Because I was overall so nervous and jittery while processing the news, I didn’t want any big to-do—definitely no Thanksgiving pregnancy announcement that would be destined to go viral. I just wanted my husband to share the news unceremoniously and succinctly, so that it would be out there. I’m bad at secrets, and carrying this one for even those 60 hours felt like a burden to bear!
After a few late arrivals and a bunch of flitting around the kitchen, at last everyone was sitting down on the sofa for hors d’oeuvres at my in-laws’ house, and my husband seized the moment, blurting out: “We just want to let you all know that Alice is pregnant.” Read more…
Funny story. On the advice of another twin mom friend, I registered for the Bob Revolution SE Duallie double stroller, which she said was the absolute best pick for an active lifestyle with twins — great for jogging, hiking, beach walks (so basically, my life — or at least, the life I want to live).
We received the stroller as a very generous shower gift from my husband’s company, where his team even assembled it for us and tied it with a big bow, a la a Christmastime car commercial. Only problem was: It didn’t fit in our car. Matter of fact, we’d soon discover that nothing we’d need for twins fit in our compact hatchback — not any double stroller, and not even my husband when the two car seats were installed. So in my 36th week or so of pregnancy we copped to reality and bought an SUV.
So flash forward to now, when I have a car big enough and finally also babies big enough to test out the Bob. And oh my gosh, you guys, I am in love. Read more…
Here in Los Angeles, we don’t have many weather-related indications that summer is turning to fall, so we have to embrace the signs wherever we can find them — so basically, in Starbucks.
For me, the special sense that fall is creeping in comes with the annual flood of lifestyle writing assignments that turn my attention to the season’s decor, food, crafts, and all the other good stuff. These stories are like pumpkin spice lattes for my laptop. They make me kind of giddy. My job doesn’t suck.
Allow me to share the joy! Following is a little roundup of some of the stories I’ve written in the last couple of weeks, in which I rounded up some of the best ideas from around the Web for Thanksgiving decorations, food, crafts, flowers, tabletop, and plenty more to buy or DIY: Read more…
Here’s the deal. I have two infants. I have no time. This is literally true now, as compared to when I used to be like “OMG, I have no time” before I had kids and what I actually meant was “I’ll really have to write this story lighting fast if I want to make it to my favorite Equinox class at noon.”
Nevertheless, three months postpartum, you won’t catch me with chipped nails or too many visible grey hairs (ugh, I just put that on the Internet). Postpartum beauty is a key self-esteem tool for me at a time in life when so much is new and scary. I may not have the magic touch that can make my baby stop crying instantly every time, but I can have amazing nails with a little advance planning and a couple hours a month of family/hubby willing to run interference. That much I can control. And I’ll tell you what: In my world, conversation-starting nail art is key to faking it til I make it.
So I’ve modified a couple of my key beauty routines to suit my life as a new twin mom. Here are the two new mom beauty go-tos that work for me… Read more…
I’m not going to lie. I thought I’d feel like the cat who ate the canary on the first night I spent away from my infant twins. But, like every other part of parenting, the reality was much more complex.
I’d had a short business trip to Las Vegas on my October calendar since even before my twins were born in July, and of course many times I wondered whether it would be logistically possible to leave them for two nights just as they turned 12 weeks old. But, with a lot of help lined up for my husband in my absence, we were making it happen. Read more…
For Halloween today, my son is an off-the-rack skeleton from Old Navy — but that’s whatever. My daughter is a hula girl, and her costume is the point of the story: Read more…
Instagram is my special, sacred place on social media. Unlike the cacophony that is my Twitter feed, for instance, my Instagram feed is a highly curated mix of about 150 posters whose every image I want to savor. They are almost entirely individuals, with a only a couple of brands mixed in, and my feed is tightly enough edited that I don’t miss anything. My favorite topics include nail art, vegan food, cats (obviously, hello), Los Angeles lifestyle, events — and most of all travel.
Behold my personal and completely unscientific sampling of some of the best travel photographers on Instagram, and one wanderlust-inspiring brand too: Read more…