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I know this one is sponsored, but since it’s heavy on the Rex, it seems pretty organic to me.  But, then I just become more in love with him every day.

Did it take a while before your kids said mama?  Suddenly Rex has become quite  a mimic.  Just tonight at bedtime I said, “I’m going to put you to bed, okay?”

“Okay” he said.  With a soft K of course.

And the winner is…

For the past four weeks I’ve been running a Cool Mom Snacks giveaway (you can see the videos here, here, here, and here) looking for the most creative ways to make eating healthy fun for kids.

I got so many great ideas from you all.  I think the overriding theme is PRESENTATION.  Skewers, muffin tin, and food coloring being the most original “I never thought of that” ideas.

Renee, love the food coloring idea and will do it as my daughter’s favorite book is Pinkalicious and she just might go for it.

I also liked Julie’s emphasis on a vegetable, which I hate to say I sometimes drop.  I always have a fruit, but other than peas, lately Vivien won’t eat anything else.  I will see if dips make a difference.  

Suse, thanks for the skewer idea.  I could try that with Vivien, although I will worry if they get near Rex.  He is a little dangerous!

So, I am going to pick the winner on not only one that I thought was good, but also got favorable comments from you all.  And that would be Alexandra of Good Day, Regular People for her idea of a muffin tin snack bar!

I am going to try it and video it next week. Congrats!!!!

Thank you all who participated for these food for thoughts and check back next Thursday as we’ll be kicking off another Snacks giveaway!

Kids playing

I don’t usually lounge around the house in a cocktail dress, but dang, I think I should!  Looks better than some of the cotton smock tops I trundle around in.  I had just finished taping Real Mom Red Carpet when I said, “Hey, camera man, get me talking with the kids in the background.” I had been wanting to talk about this subject and then they were showing it all happening.

I love them so much…and I love my Trina Turk dress, not equally, but you know.

OWN Show

You might have heard that Oprah is starting her own channel.  Which funny enough, the Oprah Winfrey network spells out OWN.  The name of the channel and the name of the contest they are doing to elicit submissions for people who want to star in their own show.  So, hey I’ve been knocking around basic cable for years on the G to H list so why not enter the contest? I feel like Cool Mom is already my mini show and how many comedic shows are done in people’s house?  I’m not including the girls next door variety.

So, if you like Cool Mom vote for me!

The last days of disco

This is Vivien and Rex on the last day she went to pre school.  Rex and I lingered for awhile when I dropped her off in the morning.  He loves playing there and I wanted to take lots of pictures of her and her friends.

I am far more sentimental than Vivien.  For survival it’s better to be more like her.  When I picked her up at the end of the day I asked her if she wanted to give the school a final look.  Knowing I would have touched every surface in true OCD style.  But, she didn’t want to.

“Come on, let’s go.”

She looked ahead.

This was Vivien the first day she went to pre school by herself.  She wore a diaper, and had curls.  She also lived in our big house.  Everything seemed so much easier.  It’s hard not to think of the time she had in preschool in terms of the upheaval, good and bad, that our family went through.  Buying dream house, getting pregnant, robbed by Madoff and company, selling dream house, dad’s worsening health.  Vivien’s forward moving nature has helped us always move forward.  Also, to our credit we tried to craft the move in a positive light.  She never saw me screaming, “Holy heck, we are f–ed!”

The moment had finally come when we had to physically walk out of our home.  The last mover had left, taking some things to storage, and other things to our rented home.  The new owners painter’s were arriving in the morning to cover the walls of our rooms.  To take down the wallpaper.  All the the things that I thought that would be there for years, that I had painstakingly chose, were to disappear after only a year.

My mom held two month old Rex as we stood on the walkway out front.  I had set up that we would have dinner out with my sister and nephew as I knew it would cheer Vivien to see him.

“This is when we say good bye to our house Vivien.” I said kneeling down to her level.  “Would you like to go back in one more time and say good bye to your house?”

“No, Mamma, let’s just go.”

In that moment she helped me so much.  That’s right, let’s just go.  It’s just a house.  I had thought I would be ill to walk away from it.  But, I wasn’t.  I just buckled her and Rex in and we went to dinner.  Drove off and didn’t look back.

Late at night when I can’t sleep I sometimes visit every room from our house in my mind. How the sun hit different rooms at different times.  How I use to like to sit at the top of the stairs, look down the hallway thinking of how our kids would grow and change here. I think about how it felt to be there before the words, “It’s gone, it’s all gone” were said to me by my husband.  The Mandarin orange pillows I had custom made for my kitchen table that I had to leave, that center island, the IRA.

But, of course the best things from that house I took with me.  They are sleeping in the next room.

“Let’s just go, Mamma.”

Vivien takes the fun she had in pre school, the friends, the confidence, the toilet training.  All the forward moving things she gained in the last two years.  She walks out and still has it.  She innately knows that.  I hope that always stays with her.  There are so many things that can shake our confidence .

Once it’s gone, I don’t think you ever get it back.


Yes, this is an advertisement, but I do like the bar that’s in it.  I don’t like a lot of “bar” type food, but I like the ones with nuts.  And I needed something other than my normal piece of cheese that I normally use as my between meal snack.  Well, and tangerines….and coffee.

This is your last chance to enter our General Mills lunch care package giveaway. Submit your tip in the comments and I’ll be selecting my fave Friday at 12pm PST! How do you convince your kids to eat fun and healthy lunches?

UPDATE: Congratulations to Alexandra for her winning snack tip!

Real mom red carpet

Why should so called famous people be the ones we ask questions of?  Is the second lead in a sitcom more wise than our real life friends?  I’ve done enough red carpet interviewing of “famous” people that I wanted to see what it would be like if I did  a red carpet interview with real life moms.

Of course, I don’t leave my house and they are all in my head.  But, you get the idea.

Gay Marriage: Where do you stand?

Here is a hot topic momversation.  Don’t blink or you will miss me. I think I’m often, like “huh?  why is this a big deal?” I was raised pretty progressive, so I can’t imagine actively blocking people from marrying Tom or Tina.  I get doing a double take when you see a same sex couple kissing at the alter, it’s all pretty new to most of us, but oh well, I also use to like to get hand written letters and that doesn’t happen much anymore. Society changes, or rather it has caught up with some peoples hearts already were.

One thing I brought up, that didn’t make it in the cut, was how any non-married couple can be marginalized. When my dad got sick, his girlfriend was shut out.  “You have to come, they won’t talk to me,” she said.

What about that about that poor girlfriend of that author who wrote the girl with the Dragon Tattoo books? 30 years, but outside of marriage, no rights.

It might be religious for some, but to me marriage is, in large part, a business arrangement.  There are no barriers as to who can incorporate a business, so why should this be different?


While working in NYC, I ran into Mr. Rocco DiSpirito at dinner last night. I yelled out, “Hey Rocco, I’m Mark Peel’s wife.”
He replied “Yes, you are” which was cute since he’s never met me before.

Feel like I knew him since my husband does and he was on Dancing With The Stars. He was fun to talk to. He said being on DWTS was harder than doing Iron Mans! I showed him pictures of my kids and then we were seated at different tables.

After a little wine I started to feel a little insecure in this big room full of new people so I sought Rocco out. “Hey, you are now my oldest friend here. I think I look good, yeah.”

“Let me see,” he said teasingly. “Yeah you look great…and you’re funny. I knew you’d be funny.”


“Because you’re married to Mark and he has a great sense of humor.”

Sure is good to see homefolk.

Wish me luck emceeing Digital Content Newfront today in front of a lot big wigs!