Posts Tagged ‘ balance ’

Alison Sweeney: “My best course of action is to model the behavior that I hope to see in them.”

Thursday, April 3rd, 2014

Like most moms, Alison Sweeney is super busy. But the Days of Our Lives actress, Biggest Loser host, author of the upcoming novel Scared Scriptless , and our cover girl along with her cute kids back in 2011 still makes living healthfully a top priority for herself, her husband, and Benjamin, now 9, and Megan, now 5. She’s recently teamed up with Arm & Hammer Truly Radiant to promote healthy smiles. Parents caught up with Sweeney to talk about good nutrition, keeping active, setting a good example, and maintaining a balance amidst the chaos.

P: How do you approach the pursuit of a healthy lifestyle?

AS: There are so many great tips from The Biggest Loser that I have incorporated into my daily life, but certainly I have tried to make it a lifestyle for my kids, too. Just that idea of healthy eating at home. Not making food or dessert a reward in any way. Trying not to put too much emphasis on food, trying to keep it in a healthy realm. I wish Popeye were on TV again eating his spinach to get big muscles, because that’s exactly what I’m going for: Your body needs fuel, but there’s good kinds and there’s bad kinds.

P: Are your kids healthy eaters naturally or do you get creative with your recipes?

AS: Maybe there are kids who are healthy eaters “naturally,” but I have yet to meet one. Our preschool taught us that kids’ palettes change over time so even if they don’t like something right away you should try it again. I just keep reintroducing foods, especially vegetables. I try different ways to prepare them. Brussesl sprouts are more a grownup thing, but I’m absolutely obsessed with them. They’re my favorite vegetable right now. I made a raw brussel sprout and kale salad the other day that I literally chopped up like a chopped salad and my kids devoured it. I had this olive oil and lemon juice dressing and roasted almonds on it and I’m not kidding, my son had third helpings. I couldn’t believe it. I do keep trying. I’m an old school parent; I’m pretty strict. “You don’t always get to eat your favorite thing. This is what I made for dinner tonight and you have to eat your vegetables.” That’s the rule.

Healthy Lunch Ideas for Kids
Healthy Lunch Ideas for Kids
Healthy Lunch Ideas for Kids

P: Is there a go-to healthy snack that you like to give them after school or before an activity?

AS: I love greek yogurt. So I have tons in the house. It’s a 2% greek yogurt with blueberries, a little bit of agave and cinnamon and spiced almonds. My kids love it and so do I and it’s really good for you.

P: How do you like to get active with your kids?

AS: My kids are involved in lots of sports and different activities after school. I like to get involved with my son. He plays baseball and I love to go out and play catch with him and run the bases. I worked with him on his running technique because I am a runner. It was really fun to practice his breathing technique with him and his posture and his form. I was thinking to myself, “Wow. It’s pretty cool, a 9-year-old learning to run legitimately.”

P: With all of this encouragement of a healthy lifestyle, how do you still promote a healthy body image so that it doesn’t become a pressurized situation, especially because you have a young daughter?

AS: I think in today’s society it really is starting to become across the sexes. It’s something that I’m extremely aware of and concerned about. I know that my best course of action is to model the behavior that I hope to see in them. I don’t criticize my own body. I don’t cover up or shy away from wearing a bathing suit when we’re at the beach or when I’m with them. I work hard not to use dieting-type words in front of them.

P: How else do you set an example?

AS: It starts from the moment you wake up in the morning. We brush our teeth together. Your kids should see you work out and taking time for yourself. You would want your daughter to take time for herself to work out. You play with your phone in the family dynamic, that’s the choice they’re going to be making. I know lots of people with teenage kids who are like, “Why are they on the phone the whole time?” And I’m like, Aren’t you texting me right now to ask me that question?

P: It seems that women are always trying to achieve a perfect balance. How do you manage expectations and how do you hope to guide your daughter?

AS: I don’t expect everything to balance out at the end of one day or two days or even a week. I feel like it is a pendulum: We’re getting a little bit heavy on the work this week, so next week we’re gonna get a little heavy on the family life. If you’re looking at the scale over the course of my life, it will balance out in the end. It’s a conversation my husband and I work on together when we see how the family dynamic is shaping up.

P: Was the quest for that balance part of your choice to leave Days of Our Lives?

AS: I turned 16 at Days and I’ve loved being part of the show. That said, my son is now 9, my daughter is 5, and I’m wanting to spend more time with them and to explore new opportunities directing, acting, writing, and developing shows.

P: How do you hope to spend the time that this will free up?

AS: I’m still planning to be busy but I’m hoping the new schedule will enable me to take my kids to school more often, help them with their homework, go with them for a hike, and take vacations when they’re on break.

P: What is your favorite thing to do with your kids? 

AS: I love when my husband, kids, and I have an impromptu dance party at our house. It’s so much fun, and hearing their laughter is the best.

Photograph: Alison Sweeney with her kids Benjamin and Megan/ S. Buckley for Shutterstock

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Melissa Explains It All: Melissa Joan Hart on Motherhood and Balance

Friday, July 12th, 2013

Most moms would agree that a million dollars is more attainable than balance. None of us have perfect balance in our lives, including celebrities. I recently had the chance to chat with Melissa Joan Hart, and the Melissa and Joey star shared some of her struggles and tips for making life with kids easier.

Q: You’re a mom of three and your youngest is only 10 months. How have you been able to slim down so quickly?

A: Morning workouts are great for me because my day hasn’t gotten in the way yet. I try to dedicate 1 hour to fitness in the morning, or I make my workouts a social experience. I like to take spinning classes with friends. I’m working on my fitness while spending time with people that I love. Nutrisystem has also really helped me stay on top of my diet.

Q: How have you been able to balance work and motherhood?

A: I used to leave the boys in Connecticut while I traveled to LA for work. We wanted them to have a grounded home base. That was pretty hard, so now we all travel together. They can come on set and see me work.

Q: What advice can you give to moms who are struggling to find work-life balance?

A: Get a calendar. My calendar is my best friend. And always prioritize. Once work is done, it’s family time, and then friends, in that order. And, like I mentioned earlier, you can combine friends and workout time.

Q: How did you approach labor and delivery? Did you have a birth plan for each of your children?

A: I did have a plan for each. I wanted to avoid drugs each time, but it wasn’t always possible. It’s great to plan, but I realized that sometimes you just have to let go and forgive yourself. The most important thing is that the baby is healthy.

Q: As a mother of three, what is the one thing you can’t live without?

A: I hate to admit it, but my iPad. It’s really helped in the car, at dinners, and on planes with the baby.

Q: Is the baby sleeping in a nursery on his own yet?

A: Oh yeah. He’s a big boy and he gets to sleep in his nursery on his own. We’re actually redoing the room for him. We chose chalkboard paint from the Disney Paints line, so he’ll be able to draw on his walls! I love that it’s non-toxic and safe for him. They even have glow-in-the-dark paint, which is really cool.

Q: You have a new book coming out this fall, Melissa Explains it All. Is there anything that moms can look forward to?

A: Yes. I’m very excited about the book. There’s a whole chapter on motherhood. It’s my true story of all of my different worlds (motherhood, work, marriage) colliding.

Q: You have three beautiful boys. Do you think you’ll try for a girl?

A: Doing a little girl’s hair is a scary thought. No girls for me.

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Singer Jewel on Motherhood and Learning “The Balancing Act”

Thursday, April 25th, 2013

This post was written by our friends at Celebrity Baby Scoop.

Singer and songwriter Jewel has been one busy mama! She recently performed during the Academy of Country Music Awards’ Lifting Lives Moment to benefit ConAgra Foods’ Child Hunger Ends Here Campaign. She is also set to play June Carter Cash in the Lifetime Original Movie Ring of Fire, coming out this May.

Jewel opens up to Celebrity Baby Scoop about her son, Kase, 20-months, who went on his first “road tour,” her involvement with ConAgra and the cause to end child hunger, finding a balance between being a mom and having a creative outlet, and her Mother’s Day plans.

Celebrity Baby Scoop: Tell us about your partnership with ACM Lifting Lives. How did you get involved with the organization?

Jewel: “I was the spokesperson for ConAgra Foods last year. ConAgra’s initiative is to bring awareness to end child hunger, and they did this by partnering with the ACM. They have songwriters and artists write songs in different formats, such as a country song or a pop song, which are then used in the commercials. Last year, I sang a song for the campaign and Little Big Town performed it for the ACM Lifting Lives moment. This year, another girl wrote the song and I performed at the ACM Awards.”

CBS: How did you prepare for your performance at the Academy of Country Music Awards?

J: “I performed a medley of my song Hands and this other song. I’ve prepared in all sorts of ways. I had to work on the medley, work out the keys, and practice on it to make sure I was ready to do it live.”

(more…)

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