An Interview with Kristin Cavallari: On Parenting, Philanthropy and Football

Kristin Cavallari

Kristin waiting patiently for my hard-hitting questions.

I have to admit that when I was offered the opportunity to interview Kristin Cavallari, I had to use Google and Facebook to find out who she was.

I never did get into watching Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County or The Hills.

But, apparently, many of my Facebook friends did.

And then I read more about Kristin and realized she is a new mom and married to Jay Cutler, quarterback of the Chicago Bears. She’s also done some charitable work with One Kid One World.

Game on. I totally speak parenting, football and philanthropy.

These days, Kristin is concentrating on her jewelry line with Pascal Mouwad and her shoe line, Chinese Laundry by Kristin Cavallari, which both debuted earlier this year.

In the interview, I ask her how becoming a mom has changed her life, if she’ll let Cam (her son) play football and whether or not she’s putting her acting career on hold for family.

I also put her on the spot and asked her what giving back means to her. (I do this to everyone, of course.)

You’ll have to watch the video to hear her answers.

Oh, and she makes me feel old when she refers to The Cosby Show as “before her time.” Her all time favorite TV mom is much more current than mine. Go figure. (Click here to see the results of TiVo’s Mother’s Day Survey infographic. Can you guess who was the most popular television mom? Hint: She was waaaaayyyyyy before Kristin’s time.)

That’s OK. Kristin was very sweet.

What would you ask Kristin Cavallari if you had the chance to interview her?

Battle wounds and tests of motherhood (post from the past)

As I was going through past posts on my recent writer’s retreat, I came to the realization that I’ve now been writing this blog for 3 years. The blog has progressed in many ways since February 0f 2010. To celebrate, I thought I’d bring back a post from my first year blogging in this space. The following post was originally published on November 1, 2010. I’m pretty sure not a whole lot of people actually read it.

all stitched up.

Nothing prepares you to be a mother. I don’t care who you are, how much experience you have with children or how many books you’ve read. Motherhood is something you have to experience to understand the sheer perplexities of the title.

When G, who is 5, put his arm through a plate glass door in our house last week, I was faced with a situation that I wasn’t ready for. There was blood. A lot of it. There was screaming. There was broken shards of glass all over the floor.

The thing is that, when you’re a mom, you stay calm (or at least make it seem like you’re calm) and handle the situation. No matter how nauseous you might feel. That’s your job.

While I certainly can’t say I handled the situation perfectly, I can say that I did my job. I have to admit, I almost panicked when I took G’s shirt off to assess where all the blood was coming from. It was flowing fast and all over the floor. And, it turns out, the gash was pretty big. The biggest I’ve seen up close.

It was extremely clear to me that I needed to get him to the ER. I also had to retrieve his 23 month old brother from the other side of the door. Both boys needed to be told everything would be okay and cleared from the glass. And, yes, there was still all that blood to deal with.

Though I couldn’t quite get G to sit down, I was finally able to find a clean rag to wrap the wound. (I’m pretty sure there was a lot of me wandering around the room trying to figure out what to do next as well.) I made unsuccessful calls to my husband who I was sure would come home to an empty house with blood and glass all over the floor and to my friend (and nurse) who I hoped was still in her car after picking up her kids from the same daycare I just left. I was focused on getting G to the ER, and I could have used a little help.

The bleeding stopped after a few minutes. I managed to get the owner of the boys’ daycare to come over and pick up Biz while I took G to the ER. I got my husband by text in the ER, and my friend turned her car around to go to the house and clean the mess up. I have a great support system.

In the ER, the nurse practitioner took one look at the wound and said, “that is awesome!” (That is also why she’s and ER nurse, and I am not.) G didn’t even shed a tear at the hospital.

It was not a fun experience. I hope I never go through something like that again. In the days after the accident, I could actually feel pain in my arm when I thought about it.

In retrospect, it could have been a lot worse. In the end, at least I passed one of the many tests I will face as a mother. Everyone is in one piece, and G will have a great scar to go along with the harrowing story.

Do you have a good ER story that involves your kids?

Mother of the year moment

I live in Maine. When people think of my state, they often think of two things: lobsters and snow.

When you live in Maine, you need to be prepared for any kind of weather. You never know if it’s going to be shorts weather or snowing. Sometimes, you start the day in shorts and end in jeans and sweatshirt. Or vice versa.

We have 5 seasons here: winter, spring, mud, summer and fall.

You’d think, on the first week of November, we’d be ready for snow.

You’d think we’d have things like winter jackets, snow pants, hats, gloves and boots ready to go.

And we do. We just apparently don’t have any that fit my children.

siberian husky in snow

My Siberian husky, Kailua, is always well equipped for the snow.

Thursday morning, when we awoke to a couple inches of snow on the ground, neither one of my boys had boots to wear.

I’d like to say that it was all a surprise to me. That I just didn’t realize how big my boys’ feet were getting or that the mountains of boots in the closet wouldn’t fit.

But, the truth is that we totally knew that G’s boots no longer fit him when we hit the muddy apple orchard a little while back and he ended up having to wear some old sneakers instead. At the same time, we had Biz try on all of G’s old boots and promptly put them into a Goodwill pile. (Biz has huge feet for his age. He can’t wear footy pajamas because of this fact. His feet don’t fit in the footy part, while the rest of the pajamas are swimming on him.)

I’ve lived in New England most of my life. I understand the fickleness of the weather. (Did I just us the word fickleness?)

Heck, it snowed the day before Halloween last year.

I probably should’ve gone out and bought them some boots by now.

I figured one day wouldn’t kill them walking on snow in their sneakers. But school won’t let the kids play in the snow at recess without boots and a snowsuit. (Gotta get one of those too. I’m pretty sure G’s too big for last year’s.) G was relegated to a small paved area in the schoolyard with the other kids whose moms didn’t prepare for the weather.

To make matters worse, G came home and showed me large holes in his gloves.

He survived, of course, but it didn’t exactly make me feel like I’d be winning any mother of the year award this week. Darn those well-prepared moms with their new boot and glove wearing kids on a cold and snowy day.

Guess what we’ll be doing today?

Have you had a mother of the year moment? 

The Walk of Shame with a Screaming Child

An upset Biz. (not at Target)

For the first time in 7 years of being a mom, I had to do the walk of shame out of our local Target with a screaming child.

I’ve never done this before. And, I suppose, I should be thankful that it has taken this long to have this experience. You know, the one where you desperately try to get your child to calm down in the store for just a few minutes so you can finish the trip and get home with your errands done.

Yeah, not so much.

Biz, who is not quite 4 yet, had different plans last Friday afternoon in Target.

I guess it’s kind of my fault. I knew the timing wasn’t so great. It was Friday, after all. On Friday, my kids are tired after a long week of school, daycare and other activities. The last thing they want to do is go shopping.

However, we had a long day ahead of us on Saturday, with soccer, a planned outing to a pumpkin festival with friends and a birthday party.

All I needed to do was buy two gifts. The party was for a brother and sister who were turning 1 and 3 respectively. I explained, as I always do before these type of trips, exactly what we were going in the store to buy. Presents for their friends. That’s it, and we’d be done. If they were good, we might take a look at the birthday invitations, since Biz’s birthday is coming up in November.

Usually this strategy works. But, not last Friday. I asked Biz which squinky set his friend might like best. (And, by the way, what the heck is up with these squinky things? This is why I hate venturing into the girl aisles.) I gave him a choice of two different sets. He decided to choose a much bigger and more expensive set. When I explained that his choice was nice but not an option for us, he screamed.

And then it all pretty much fell apart from there.

I can usually turn my kids’ bad behavior around in situations like this. I crouched down to his level and explained why we couldn’t get his set, noted that he could still make a choice from the other sets and even pick out some wrapping paper. But Biz was adamant that we get this particularly large princess-themed squinky set for his little friend.

I could tell there was nothing that I could say to make him calm down. He was done. Done with the week. Done with shopping. Done with doing things he didn’t want to do.

So, I took his hand and, after some coaxing (and maybe a little fighting), walked out of the store. Me with my head held high because I wasn’t about to let a screaming child dictate my purchases. Biz still crying and complaining. G following behind wondering when we’d get to purchase the birthday presents.

Biz spent some time in his room on Friday. He noted that he was tired and told me he wouldn’t scream in Target again. Here’s hoping. He actually seemed to feel bad after the event. He knew I wasn’t happy.

I went back to Target, alone, the next day to purchase the gifts in between soccer and our fall festival excursion.

Have you had to do the walk of shame with a screaming child?

Words and Phrases Moms of Boys Utter on a Regular Basis

tackling boysWhen I was pregnant, I never found out if I was having a boy or a girl. My husband and I didn’t see the point. It’s a child. Why would we do anything different to prepare for a boy or a girl? Plus, I really didn’t want a bunch of pink cutesy gifts if I knew I was having a girl. Luckily, I ended up with two boys, so I avoided the pink thing.

While the preparation for a baby is pretty much the same for boys and girls, things change as they grow into real, interactive human beings.

Boys have a ridiculous amount of energy,  a seemingly innate need to wrestle all the time and consume endless amounts of food. At least in my experience. They also seem to understand how to actually transform a Transformer, something I cannot nor have the desire to do.

I’m guessing moms of boys utter the same type of words and phrases I do on a regular basis. Here are 15 words and phrases that are fairly typical in my household:

  1. Does anyone even hear me right now? (over lots of yelling and laughing while wrestling)
  2. I don’t want to hear it unless something is bleeding or broken
  3. How are you still eating?
  4. Put your toys in the bin, not in your pants
  5. What just went flying by my head?
  6. Don’t stand on/climb on/jump off that
  7. It’s not funny to burp and/or fart at the table
  8. Where are your pants? (Or, alternately, Where is your other sock?)
  9. I don’t know where X is? Did you try looking for it?
  10. Why is your brother crying?
  11. Well, maybe that wouldn’t happen if you didn’t ____ (jump off the couch head first, punch your brother in the head, etc.)
  12. That’s sounds like a terrible idea (usually shouted from the next room when hearing something like “Let’s bonk heads” like the head bonking dinosaurs we just read about)
  13. I’m Mom, nice to meet you (in response to I’m bored or hungry, etc.)
  14. When’s the last time you washed your hands?
  15. Really?! (uttered to my husband in disbelief of something the boys are doing, who then responds with a very matter of fact “Yes, really.”)

Boys are certainly an adventure. At least we won’t have to deal with a hormonal teenage girl. That’s what I keep telling myself anyway.

Are you a mom of boys? Do these words and phrases sound familiar to you? What would you add to the list?