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Mom Atlantic City August 1946

3 Fun Things in Honor of Mother’s Day (Including a Fab Giveaway for One Lucky Mama!)

Wow. I’ve been a mama for nine months, meaning those twin babes have been on the outside now for as long as they were in.

Any parent out there knows there are no words to describe the enormity of it, the massively additive power of parenthood to expand your life and love and reinvent many parts of everything you just thought you already knew.

But instead of using this post to wax self-indulgently philosophical (or self congratulatory) about motherhood, I’ll use it for three breezy, fun things I think everyone can get behind:

1) …to send big love and appreciation to all you moms out there for Mother’s Day! You are all goddesses and super heroes. Imagine me telling you this every day, forever.

When traveling on business this week, I gave an unsolicited hug and shared spontaneous tears with a mom sitting on the floor at LAX administering oxygen to her baby who was having an asthma attack, while the mom tussled with an unsupportive airline staff person. If I see you, and you need a hug, I’m going to hug you and cry with you too — mark my words. I stand with all of you mamas. We are a team.

2) …to share the above epic throwback photo of my mama (Atlantic City, 1946), who [did not have an easy job with my obnoxious behind and] has my back no matter what. I could never thank her, or call her, enough. But I am trying.

Bonus: Scroll down for more throwback mom-and-me photos (featuring epic ’70s fashion! world traveling! wedding joy!)!

And…
3) …to reward one very lucky mama among you with a killer giveaway! Read on…

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Mother's Day gift for pregnant wife

Need a Mother’s Day Gift for Pregnant Wife? Friend? Yourself?! 9 Ideas Here…

Last Mother’s Day, I was edging into my third trimester. No, I didn’t have babies yet, so technically I wasn’t a mom. But I’d already been working hard: Twin pregnancy isn’t always a walk in the park!

Because my family is superstitious, we didn’t really do gifts. But if they had been inclined to honor me with gifts as a mama-to-be, here are a few things I think would have made perfect choices. And they might be just right if you need a Mother’s Day gift for pregnant wife, friend, daughter, sister — and definitely yourself! Read more…

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Photo: Dan Hallman Photography

How to Style Curly Hair: You Asked For It!

I recently wrote a story for Today.com about why I’d never want to look 25 again, and about celebrating beauty at all ages. In spite of myself, I read every comment following the social media promotion of that post — which was meant only as rah-rah women in tone, but was taken in all kinds of ways.

A significant enough subset of those comments focused on my hair. [Bats lashes prettily!] Women of various ethnicities, ages, and hair lengths wanted to know how to style curly hair. Specifically, they asked me which products I use on my signature long, blonde curls.

Well, ladies? That’s all the encouragement I need! Here in plain terms are my easy-to-duplicate instructions for how to style curly hair. I know as well as any curly-haired queen that our hair is very specific to each of us, as are the methods for making it look its best. But this is my personal method, practiced over a whole adult lifetime, in case it can help you, too! Read more…

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after pregnancy body

After Pregnancy Body Shocker (Or: Beware the Korean Spa)

Hey Pregnant Ladies:

I hope very much that you, like a celebrity, look Us Weekly-cover ready a month after you deliver. Looking and feeling hot and sexy as a new mom would make for a few less things to worry about during that emotional, exhausted, insane first few weeks. And I want that for you.

And maybe that will happen. But just in case it doesn’t, I’m here to tell you a couple of personal tales that I hope can prepare you, in the event that you find yourself still looking pregnant for a really long time after you deliver. (If this is news to you, sorry I’m the one to—ahem—deliver it!)

Here’s the real deal: You’re probably going to look pregnant for a while, even a long while, after delivery. Here are stories from my first three months postpartum, after delivering my full-term twins, that still make me cringe deep in my soul — the trauma may never fully fade, in fact. But now that I’ve lost all my pregnancy weight (50-plus pounds through hard, protracted work — no magic involved), I have the necessary distance (and confidence) to tell two tales from the trenches. Read more…

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matzoh ball soup

Happy Hanukkah! (And the Gifts I’m Getting for the Twins Slash Myself)

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…

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St. Regis Princeville Hawaii at Christmas

Holiday Gifts For Pregnant Ladies! 16 Fab Finds That I Personally Covet

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…

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Thanksgiving pregnancy announcement

Thanksgiving Pregnancy Announcement (Or: Holiday Bombshell!)

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…

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Photo courtesy of Simple Stylings

38 Fun Ideas for Thanksgiving Decorations, Food, and Crafts to DIY and Buy

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…

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nude and gold negative space nail art

2 New Mom Beauty Tips (Also Known As: Aint Nobody Got Time)

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…

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The Fresh Diet vegetarian

I’m Back on the Eat-Right Wagon After Babies! (Join Me on The Fresh Diet?)

It’s now officially three months since I delivered my twins, and alas, I’m not quite ready for my bikini Us Weekly cover. It turns out — wait for it — stars are not just like us.

While I’ll resist a tirade about the dangerous nature of our cultural body-after-baby-in-five-minutes obsession, I can say that I am fully cleared after C-section to resume most excercise (with the exception of things like crunches that could exacerbate my diastasis recti — but that will be a topic for another post). And I’m back to eating right after, shall we say, several months of ravenous appetite indulgence related to creating two human bodies inside my body. And, yes — I have a few (ahem) more pounds still to lose before I’m back at my pre-pregnancy weight.

Only thing is I’m working full time and have the two teeny humans mentioned above to look after. So there’s not the time there used to be to devote to grocery shopping, recipe hunting, cooking, counting calories, focusing on portions, and all that jazz.

So I’m back to my old standby: The Fresh Diet. Read more…

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