Myself in 3 words
Balance between acting and family
Acting is an all or nothing career. You’re either working your bottom off or you are in the midst of (sometimes needed, sometimes not) down time. The way I balance my work with my family is making sure that when I am not working, I am fully present with my husband and son and putting time with them above everything else. David and I do not have a nanny, so when we are not working, we are both there front and center with Josh. And when we are working, we do our best to split up Josh’s care between the two of us. Letting your family know that they come first in all of your downtime is a very important message.
Favorite kid-friendly weekend activities
Oh man, I am going to try and limit my answer here, because I could write a book on this question! The Farmer’s Market is one of our absolute favorite weekend activities. I am literally in heaven there and being able to share that experience with my son, who now has an appreciation for farm fresh and local, is invaluable. We also live near Griffith Park in Los Angeles. Within a ten minute drive we can access the LA Zoo, Travel Town (a train lover’s dream), the Merry-Go-Round and countless incredible parks. We also love exploring museums like LACMA, The Natural History Museum and The Science Museum. We are lucky because LA really has everything a kid could dream of.
Favorite Kid-Friendly Restaurants
I honestly find most restaurants are kid friendly enough, if you just go early! Some of our tippy top favorites are John and Vinny’s for pizza and literally anything. Messhall Kitchen which is a 3 minute drive and our local spot. Mexico City is also right near us and makes some MEAN guac. Kettle Black makes probably the best pasta in all the land. And if Mama is feeling like she needs a glass of wine, a salad, a yummy dessert with a girlfriend while the kids play and do crafts, Au Fudge is not to be missed.
Becoming a mom and my acting career
First, in terms of my acting, it has made me a much better actor. As an actor, you most often are expanding on feelings and experiences you have had in real life. Being a mom opens you to a whole new world, that until you are a mom you couldn’t possibly understand. Being a mom makes you vulnerable in a way you never were before. It has allowed me to access emotion that was never as readily available. As I sit with my son watching “How To Train Your Dragon” for the millionth time, the swelling music as the hero soars for the first time on the dragon…bawling. That depth of emotion, that vulnerability that understanding of what it really means to put someone and their needs head and shoulders above you and yours has enhanced my acting ability exponentially.
Second, in terms of the jobs I take, having a child who is about to start Kindergarten, those projects that are in some remote part of the world for years? Those projects are not options for me or my husband anymore. We often joke ‘well, if it’s one of the Steven’s (Soderbergh or Spielberg)…’. Meaning, of course, there are extenuating circumstances, and career opportunities you just can’t turn down. And with everything, you cross that bridge when you come to it, and decide case by case weighing all the options.
Favorite family vacation
Two summers ago, we went to Greece with some of our best friends. It was perfect. We did a day in Athens. We rented a house on a small beach island called Paros. Then we stayed in a hotel in Santorini. And we ended our trip in a hotel on a cliff in Mykonos. The other family had a 3 year old who Josh had known since they were four months. And the mom and I are best friends. It was truly magical and beautiful and fun beyond words. And to be able to show my son GREECE! At age 3! There is truly nothing better. I will remember that trip for the rest of my life. Pretty sure we all will.
What is “me time”? Haha, just kidding. My real “me time” indulgence that my husband and son know is non-negotiable is my Tracy Anderson workout. It’s 1-2 hours, 6 days a week. My husband is amazingly supportive of this time for me. He knows I need it. And he also knows how much nicer a person I am when I can have that time. So really, he knows HE needs it. I don’t really need or want to ask for any more “me time” than that. It helps me feel good about myself and helps me be the wife and mother I want to be.
Values for my son
Kindness, compassion, love. I want my son, first and foremost, to be a good person who treats everyone like equals NO MATTER WHAT. I want him to instinctively take care of and help others. After that, I want him to feel confident to try and fail. I want him to take risks. I want him to fight for what he wants. And I want him to always want to cuddle with Mama…no? That probably wouldn’t be good in actuality, but right now it sure sounds nice.
Oh MAN, there are truly so many. My own mother is the first that comes to mind. She is the most fierce, loving, protecting mom in the world. Next, one of my best friends, Tracy Anderson. No one works harder and does more for her children. No one. Every one of my friends who is a mommy, I admire, look up to and learn from. Every single one, in different ways. And to those of my friends who are reading this: I love you, I am inspired by you, I am in awe of you, and let’s go get a glass of wine, k?