Muffin Top Skinny Jeans and All

So the love letter I wrote to my skinny jeans? It worked. After months of eating like a true Hollywoodista, I'm down 30 pounds from October 2nd which means I have ten pounds to go (15 to my goal weight but we'll see how that works out...)

I have been unable to get to the gym since Fable's birth and though I do walk quite a bit and hike once in a while, my exercise these past few months has been menial. I will credit most of my 30 pound weight-loss to my diet which I invented and will hereby deem "the almond diet" or "the almond and Quinoa and grain" diet or perhaps more specifically "the substitute all snacks with almonds, eat grains and fruit for breakfast and quinoa and vegetables for lunch and dinner and drink one cup of green tea a day" diet, which is the easiest diet ever if you love almonds, quinoa, vegetables and grains for breakfast. Which I honest to God do.

Of course, just because I'm back in my skinny jeans does not in any way mean I look good in them. In fact, I look pretty busted can't be trusted no way in hell I'm putting on a bikini or wearing any fitted shirts out in public* in my current state of Ab Flab. But! Who the hell cares so long as ALL OF MY JEANS fit me again! Plus, I figure it took about four months for me to get back into them, it should take me at least four months more before they look good on me. Right?

Back in my red skinnies, again...

...and I feel ABsolutely FLABulous!

Sure, my belly flab is rolling over the waistband of my jeans like a fog but fuck it, this is how I look in my current state, en route to the City of Slim Abs, population 6pack*.

As for now? I'll rock the shit out of my muffin top because guess what? No more panel pants or elastic waistbands. I be rockin' my skinny jeans, bitches. I be rockin' my skinny jeans.


*Don't you love how I just said I'd never wear a bikini and/or a fitted shirt in public in my current state and yet I just flashed the entire Internet my postpartum pot belly? That makes no sense whatsoever.

** Don't think a six-pack is in my future but operation lose 15 more pounds starts now and with it? 200 belly crunches daily. Watch out, Britney. I'm making a comeback, too.


...And In other news, I'm the proud owner of a Mirena IUD. Read all about it, here.

She Radiates

Next week Fable will be four months old. Her infancy has escaped her and us, replaced by a baby who can sit up unassisted for a whole five seconds before she tips over. I've taken almost 2,000 photos of her since her birth because she's so damn beautiful I can't stop staring at her. Touching her porcelain skin. Nibbling the drool off her chin.

For the past month she hasn't napped. She prefers to stay up all day, perched on my lap, hooting and waving her hands, howling at me and suckling, smiling. Kicking her little legs, watching me work and smile back at her behind glasses, thanking her for coming into my life with her light and her sparkling eyes.


Dreaming things in black and white. Waking up to them in color.

Once upon a time I wrote a short story. A story about twins, a boy and a girl and their recently divorced mother. I called it "Division Day*."

Over the weekend this short story; twenty pages of script, came true in the form of a set and actors and cameras and a director who took my words and made them come alive.

I love writing. I love blogging and writing fiction and non-fiction, short stories. I've written all my life. Three finished novels on life-support but nonetheless breathing. Essays. Poetry. I've written copy for adult websites and pamphlets for non-profit organizations. Pen to paper. Fingers to keys. Heart to page.

This week has been my first experience on the sidelines; watching a story come alive. A story born from a thought I had in the shower, one night last April. A story that as I type this post is being brought to life by an incredible cast of actors, a director I highly respect and a crew who have been able to replicate my vision beyond expectation.

I thought I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up. I thought maybe three times the charm. That I'd keep writing novels until one of them sold. Forever if that was how long it took, but after this week, I think I want to change directions.

Ten years of fighting Los Angeles, rolling my eyes at Hollywood, wanting to get the hell out of here, and suddenly I get it. There is something truly magical about being on set. Watching characters come to life. The energy is electric, palpable.

And so I stand today, wading in the waters of a dream I didn't know I had until right this very second. And Oh my God, you guys. I can't stop crying. 


*Division Day is one part of a four part collaborative feature called Bedrooms, including four individually directed/written shorts. More details to come.

Joke for a Friday

*The following is a homemade joke by Archer. Be sure to credit him when using it to pick up girls/dudes, make friends, etc.

Q: What wears heat? 

 A: The lightbulbs do!

(*you're welcome)


Effing H'ing... Whatever

So... here's the thing. Sometimes I cuss. 

Memo to brand new parents: Just because your child isn't talking doesn't mean your child isn't listening, soaking like a sponge words like "fuck," "shit," "vaginalipped-hobag" etc. (But you probably knew that because you're smarter than I am.)

Memo to self: Comb hair before next momversation because Oy. 

Memo to viewers: Since this episode of Momversation taped I got a much-needed haircut. At least Alice and Mindy look hot: 

What about you? Are you as classy as I am when it comes to swear-word etiquette? Got any good swearing toddler stories? Is cussing a big deal to you? A medium-sized deal? Have you managed to keep your kid's ears innocent? (I didn't hear "fuck" until I was eight-years old, you guys. EIGHT-YEARS OLD! This might be why I'm such a fan of four-letter words, now.)


In other news... a post-inauguration day fun-fest is happening in my left tit, something the doctors like to call... MASTITIS! Booooo! I mean... Booooob! I mean...  Left booooooob! Read all about my lumpy, clogged-duct infected, throbbing on-fire mastitisy teet, here. 



I voted in my first Presidential Election in 2000 when I was nineteen. Al Gore won lost. I voted for the second time in 2004 when I was twenty-three. John Kerry also lost. I voted for the third time this past November and today watched as Barack Obama became the 44th President of the United States: My first president.

I kept Archer home from school this morning to witness this day, this moment and I sat between my babies, eyes glued to the TV and I cried. Clutching the hands of my son and my daughter, I cried.

I cried because the world feels very small. Because the next time I travel abroad I won't be ashamed to say I'm American. I cried because people are good and decent and capable of such profound change. Because the future is hopeful as are my peers, my friends, family, even those most cynical. Because Bush is no longer the face of this country and Mr. Potter's Cheney's karma is already at work. Because everything just feels new, today. Different. Because when my children will think, "first family" they will think of this:

When I'm old and people ask "where were you on Jan 20, 2009," I will say, proudly, that I was home, between my children, the reflection of change personified flickering like fire in their eyes. That I got to watch history unfold whilst being surrounded by the future: On one side, an infant gurgling, waving her little fists with wide, wandering eyes. On the other, a boy, perceptive beyond his three years, watching the television with cockeyed interest.

As Biden was being sworn-in, Archer turned to me and said oblivious to the weight of his words.

"Barack Obama gets to go next, right Mommy?"

"Yes, baby. Barack Obama does get to go next."

"Because it's Barack Obama's turn. And then we clap, okay?"

"Yes. We clap as loud as we can."

And so we did. We clapped along with millions... with billions of people in the United States and the world.

We're still clapping.


P.S. Happy Birthday, Mom.

Censorship and the Blog

I started writing about my life ( for an audience of strangers) when I was fourteen. I wrote for a popular teenage book series for eight years and in that time, wrote about my boyfriends, my parents, my friends... I used their names, even. My entire adolescence can be found in the pages of books and so, it's nothing new for me to write openly, nothing new for my family and friends to read about themselves. Names were never changed to protect the innocent. 

In order to write honestly I feel like I need to be wholly honest when it comes to my life and changing names, settings and other details (for me!) compromises my non-fiction. I write fiction to escape my life and memoir to remember it. Of course, easy for me to say when my family is so supportive, right? Trust me, I know.

I do understand why people are cautious online and I respect it completely. I understand why photos, names and even pictures aren't made public.  Very much I understand. And of course there are plenty of things I don't blog about at the risk of hurting, offending or shocking the people I love.

As we all know, there have been many occasions where we as a community have been called out for "exploiting our kids"  because we choose to write about OUR experiences with them. Because they happen to be part of our stories, our lives. And that's just ... well... Dana has some words for those mofos on today's Momversation. And Heather. And me: 

Do you censor your blog? Why or why not? And where do you draw the line in terms of what you are willing to share with the Internet. Is it possible to share too much? Talk to me... 


And in other news, my whole "NO PINK!" rule? Has gone completely out the window. 


Behind the Name

Fable (noun); a story, conveying a moral.

Since Fable's birth people have repeatedly asked where her name came from.

"That's a different name. What made you decide to call her Fable?"

"I didn't even know Fable was a name," some say.

And it isn't. Not really. But for me, to name a child is to swaddle him/her with meaning.

Fable Luella, 3 1/2 months, my little wide-eyed storybook.

Some parents choose names that are close to their hearts, family names, names that remind them of beautiful things, of books and paintings and poetry. Some people choose names for their metaphors, or simply because they're pretty, strong, handsome. We chose Archer for its precise strength and Sage for its wisdom. The name Luella was a nod to my late grandpa, Lou. And Fable? For the morals of great stories told and those yet to be...

Once upon a time...

...there lived a young girl named Fable with an old soul and kind eyes...

....and she lived happily ever after, spreading joy and love to all around.

(May your story have many morals, little girl.)


Epiblogues: Marriage vs. Motherhood

First of all, thank you for your candid comments to my last post. People responded all over the Internet to the question Heather posed, Wednesday and each response was an eye-opener for me. I got to really thinking about marriage and why I struggled so hard early on. 

I was also taken aback by a commenter questioning my love for Hal because I'll admit to a wandering eye, to struggling with the idea of monogamy (sexually as well as intellectually and spiritually.) I happen to be very honest with myself when it comes to love and the reality of relationships and I've never believed that one person can or should complete me. I certainly don't "complete" Hal or anyone else. Nor do I aim to. Faaaar too much pressure and besides? We are complex individuals with complex needs extending beyond our families and spouses at times. 

It wasn't until Hal and I became honest with each other about our fears and the pressures or married life that we became happy and really honestly fell in love with one another. True story. 

I resented Hal in the beginning of our marriage because I thought he wanted to keep me from my life, taking away my open road and replacing it with a culdesac. No outlet. I resented him far more than I resented Archer for making me a mother.
Being a wife was the reason I felt so alone.

But my loneliness, it seemed was a construct of my own fear. One day I spoke up and everything changed. I had been wrong to feel trapped. I was in nobody's cage but my own. A cage I had likely spent my life and every serious relationship building and breaking down, afraid I might fall under someone's spell. Belong. 

No woman should ever feel trapped in her marriage just like no man should ever feel trapped in his. Our lives are precious, full of opportunities that at times, we must seek out. Otherwise it's too easy to resent our partners, our children and families. I was resenting Hal for the parts of myself I had to sacrifice in order to be with him. The day trips and the daydreams I could no longer pursue... But I could. I can. I know that now. And in retrospect it was insane of me to think otherwise. But I was young and I had never been bound by law to any person and I was scared. Intimidated by "forever."

Over the last two years I've realized that forever means nothing .... that I'm with the man I want to be with as long as our forever lasts. Whether that means five months or five decades. A marriage where windows remain open no matter the weather, and culdesacs are bulldozed through. Where in order to stay true to each other we must first be true to ourselves. Where a healthy love depends on our mutual respect for each other's independence . No cages. No clipped-wings. 

By having no expectations when it comes to happily ever after... We have found true happiness. 

The end. 


Marriage vs Motherhood

Today on Momversation: what's more difficult: being a mother or a wife? For me? Being a wife is infinitely harder, mainly because there is always, in the back of one's mind, a way out. (One cannot divorce their children.) And that can be tempting during times of stress, anger, crushes on other people, etc.  I don't necessarily believe that monogamous relationships are realistic nor do I believe that "forever" is foreveryone. 

I happen to be very happily married (now) but Hal and I have both admitted to each other (and the interwebs) that those first few years together were very hard. A lot of that had to do with the fact that we barely knew each other and were suddenly sharing parenting responsibilities. Mainly, though, I think we don't give ourselves the credit we deserve for sticking out our marriages when the going gets tough or awful. Equally I absolutely believe that if therapy (which Hal and I attended) doesn't work and two people just aren't in love anymore that divorce most def is the right way to go. Staying together for the kids is great as long as the kids aren't living with two monsters. There's a fine line, I think. 

For Hal and me? We were able to come together with a vengeance after almost breaking up but it took work and 69879878676530987875534234 tears to get there. Anyway, I'm totally blabbering on. 


What about you, ladies and gentlehusbands? Do you find marriage or parenthood to be the bigger challenge? What advice would you give a mother (or father) struggling in his/her marriage? What worked for you and/or when did you know when to call it quits?


All About Archer

Archer scopes an airplane, USS Midway, San Diego

Now that I've committed to making monthly Fable films* I thought I should commit to posting regular interviews with Archer. At least until he outgrows the blog.

The following interview was conducted after school yesterday, over cookies and milk:

What's your name? Archer
How old are you ? One, two, three. I'm three.
What's your favorite color ? Red

Waiting for pie. Christmas.

What's your favorite book? My truck book.
What's your favorite song? Carmen**
What's your favorite movie? Cars
Television Show? Little Einsteins

Favorite Smell? Flowers
Favorite Taste? Candy
What's your favorite kind of candy? Um... I like gumdrops.
Favorite Sound? Music
What's your favorite instrument? The violin
Favorite thing to do at school? Sing songs.

watching the mariachis with his Auntie Roo, Seaport Village

What's your favorite game? Candyland
Favorite Food? Cheerios and fish and macaroni and also.... cake.
Favorite thing to drink? Water

What's your favorite animal? Elephant
What's your favorite thing to do? Play with my marbles.
Where's your favorite place to go? The slide.

sliding with cousin Anushka, Moonlight Beach

What makes you happy? Being in the car and looking at big buildings out the window. And also... Telephone poles.
What do you want to be when you grow up? A pirate. Argh!

looking for treasure with Uncle Dave (my brother) and my sister, Auntie Roo, Moonlight Beach.


*I decided to make monthly Fable films so she had something cool to look back on when she's older. Archer has a book documenting his first two years and the months leading up to his birth and I won't be writing a sequel. I want both my children to feel equally loved and inspiring when they look back on the various pages and videos that exist in their honor.

**he sings along in French. No joke. Hal's a huge Opera buff and Archer seems to be in full agreement that opera is superior to all art forms. We're putting the boy in a choir program this summer. I know he's my kid and all but it's pretty amazing how musically inclined he is. And his voice? Pitch perfect. Make a grown man cry, that voice.

I'm Being Followed by a Moonshadow?

Remember when I made this over the summer?

Apparently someone else ripped my outfit exactly had the exact same idea and is totally selling them at an upscale boutique IN MY HOMETOWN! Like, where my mom shops. My friend snapped a photo of it on her phone. See for yourself:

Don't you know? Fakes are never in fashion. 

I mean.... Really?*

So much for trying to make something unique and original. Annoying.


*This could totally be a coincidence by the way. Highly doubtful but still a possibility. 

When You Are Engulfed in Kisses

Fable hits the big 3! Continues breaking hearts. Specifically mine.

Today Fable is three-months old. I keep telling her not to grow up but she's ignoring me. Bummer. Here's to chapter three (months) in a story that keeps getting better...

*Chapter (Month) Two, here.
**Chapter (Month) One, here
***Fable's prologue, here.


Music: Papillon by Rilo Kiley