The annual CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute event, which honors those making differences in their communities and around the globe, filled LA's Shrine Auditorium with plenty of stars last night. Emma Roberts was on hand to present in a short black Maria Lucia Hohan dress while Sofia Vergara chose dark hued Dolce & Gabbana and Brooklyn Decker went with a metallic Christian Dior number. Miley Cyrus, who performed “The Climb,” arrived in a revealing yellow Roberto Cavalli gown with boyfriend Liam Hemsworth by her side. They weren't the only famous faces to show their support at the event since AnnaLynne McCord, Mary-Louise Parker, Christy Turlington, and others also came out for the show. CNN's own Anderson Cooper has since returned to NYC, but did his part by hosting the evening and wowing a few celebrities like Emma, who twittered that meeting him backstage was a dream come true.
Nicole Richie played host to a number of celebrity parents and their kids at a Winter Wonderland event with Baby2Baby and Huggies in LA on Saturday. Nicole didn't bring her two little ones, Harlow and Sparrow, to the bash, but Rachel Zoe and Rodger Berman did pose with their son, Skyler. The stylish 7-month-old was in all gray, which made his big blue eyes stand out. Rachel didn't break out Skyler's adorable Gucci tuxedo this time, though it's going to be pretty adorable when he does get black-tie formal. Rebecca Gayheart, who is pregnant with her second baby, joined husband Eric Dane and their first daughter, Billie, while Busy Philipps got crafty with tuxedo-shirt-wearing Birdie. Cash Warren brought Honor to get her face painted while his wife, Jessica Alba, traveled back from Milan with their younger baby, Haven.
Editor's note: The following is a guest post written by Soleil Moon Frye, Target's mommy ambassador, author of Happy Chaos, and mom to Poet, 6, and Jagger, 3. This week Soleil shares her tips on traveling with kids.
I'm a huge believer in the importance of taking the occasional "time out" as a family and planning an escape to recharge and reconnect.
Last year, Jason surprised me and the kids with an impromptu jaunt to Mexico. Although it was stressful to think of dropping everything on such short notice, the trip turned out to be exactly what we needed. It was an invaluable treat to spend quality time together without the distractions that pull us in a dozen different directions every day.
Whenever I'm traveling with my girls, my carry-on always includes these essentials:
- An assortment of portable activities like books, a few toys, and paper and crayons. I have the girls pick out a few of their favorite things from home to take with them — this way we're not overloaded with too much stuff, but they feel connected to what they are bringing.
- A first aid kit with Band-Aids and other Doctor Mom must haves in case of emergencies.
- Wipes, wipes, and more wipes. They're quick and easy for cleaning up spills and sticky fingers on the go.
- A change of clothes for both girls, including a sweatshirt in case they get cold.
- A stash of yummy snacks is the best way to combat the inevitable crankiness that comes with restless flights and travel delays.
A successful family trip doesn't require airplanes or lush accommodations. When I was growing up, my mom would delight us by laying blankets on the small balcony of our apartment and letting us sleep under the stars. I've inherited her passion for making an adventure out of everything and am also a big advocate of "staycations." In my house, we love to camp out in the living room and decorate the space to look like an exotic location. You can go all out and cook foods native to those places and do activities inspired by their cultures.
The idea is to carve out time to be together and create a special experience that the kids will always remember. The extravagance of a getaway isn't what will factor into the memories.
I'm always looking for fun family bonding ideas, so please share your cost-cutting travel tips and creative "staycation" plans with me on the Target Baby Facebook page!
. . . Soleil
Editor's note: The following is a guest post written by Soleil Moon Frye, Target's mommy ambassador, author of Happy Chaos, and mom to Poet, 6, and Jagger, 3. This week Soleil shares her tips on bringing her kids into the kitchen.
I'm a huge holiday person, and birthday celebrations are especially important to me. It's not about the presents — my favorite memories from childhood birthdays are of my mom showering me with attention, filling the day with my favorite foods, and making me feel special and loved.
I'm not sure anything will ever top Johnny Depp crashing my 12th birthday (a special surprise from a mutual friend), but I'm determined to create similarly unforgettable birthday experiences for my girls.
For Poet’s fifth birthday, we had a Grease-themed party and went for a full-out, '50s-style event. It’s possible to be elaborate without being expensive — for the Grease party I found discounted Halloween costumes and spandex pants online, then scooped up festive and affordable party supply essentials at Target. My friends set up a makeup station and sprayed the girls' hair into wild Grease-era styles. If you’re willing to play DJ on your iPod, a dance party is free!
Here are some other fun, budget-friendly ideas:
- DIY goodie bags: Fill large mason jars with candy and let kids decorate brown paper to-go sacks with stamps and stickers.
- Treasure hunt: Scatter little toys and treats around the yard or park, and send the kids to go find them. Works every time!
- Crafts: Buy a bunch of inexpensive picture frames and let the kids decorate them with paint, stickers, and glitter. If you’re a fan of Polaroid cameras like I am, snap photos of each guest with the birthday boy or girl to go in frames as a memory of the day.
- Philanthropy: It's never too early to introduce kids to the concept of giving back and instill a sense of compassion and awareness. Have guests bring toys for kids in need or donate the crafts made at the party to a local children’s hospital.
Editor's note: The following is a guest post written by Soleil Moon Frye, Target's Mommy Ambassador, author of Happy Chaos, and mom to Poet, 6, and Jagger, 3. This week Soleil shares her tips on bringing her kids into the kitchen.
I've been known to eat dessert first. While my food philosophies may be unorthodox at times, my efforts to make eating fun and exciting for my girls have produced rather impressive palates for two little ones. They love Japanese food, Indian food, veggies, you name it.
One of my tried-and-true strategies for raising well-rounded eaters is to have my kids make some of their own choices in the kitchen. Letting them have a hand in the process gives them a sense of control and empowerment — and trust me, my girls are way more willing to eat a salad that they helped make!
Here are some fun ideas for playing with ingredients in the kitchen:
We are thrilled to introduce our latest guest blogger, Soleil Moon Frye! The former Punky Brewster actress is now a mom of two — Poet, 6, Jagger, 3 — the owner of the hip, eco-chic Little Seed baby boutique, a Mommy Ambassador for Target, and the author of Happy Chaos, a parenting guide for moms who don't quite fit into the picture-perfect lifestyle many other books idealize.
After giving birth to Poet, the spunky mama felt lost in the world of spit-up and collapsible strollers that other moms seemed to "get" so easily. She turned to Twitter and Facebook to share her frustrations and ask questions, quickly building a loyal following of new moms feeling the same way.
Now she's joining us to share how she's learned to embrace the chaos life throws her way and see what tips other mothers can contribute. Tune in tomorrow for Soleil's first post for LilSugar!
When Soleil Moon Frye learned she was pregnant with her first child, she thought she'd be the picture-perfect hippie mom she'd always envisioned. Then Poet, now 6, was diagnosed with a severe case of reflux, and the former Punky Brewster actress learned that parenting is a bit more fly by night than most parenting books would have you believe.
When I spoke with actress, social media maven, and mommy ambassador for Target earlier this year, she gave us a sneak peek of her modern mommy manual, Happy Chaos ($14). While the can't-put-down book is filled with anecdotes about her life on set, her many Hollywood crushes (that children of the '80s will love), and the lessons she learned in six years of motherhood, I spoke with her again about her chaotic life as a mom of two — Poet, 6, and Jagger, 3 — and learning the ropes of parenthood. Like sitting down and dishing with your best friend, Soleil wasn't afraid to talk about the dirty details of life.
On why she wrote the book: "The majority of the parenting books that I read before I became a parent were so much about 'this kind of parent, this is how to do this, this is how to do that.' There was nothing that told me about what was going to happen in the hospital, or that I was going to get that ice pack afterward. Nobody told me about the mesh panties. Nobody told me you could have an accident on the table. So I was like how do we not share this with the sisterhood?"
On her husband, Jason Goldberg's, parenting style: "We are total opposites. He's much more conservative; I'm a free-spirit hippie. But then my daughter, Poet, had really bad reflux, so I'd be up all night, walking her every night. So all of the free-spirit things went out the window, and it made me much more fearful than I thought I would be."
On baby weight: "I'm totally that mom who’s like, 'Oh, I just had a baby — and she's 3 years old!" I use baby for an excuse for everything. My girlfriend's like, "Honey, your baby was born two-and-a-half years ago. I think you need to come up with a new excuse!'"
Busy Philipps and Ryan Phillippe were among the famous parents who brought their little ones along to Kidstock yesterday at LA's Greystone Mansion. The event was held to benefit the One Voice Scholars program, and there was plenty to keep the celebrity babies busy. Ryan's son, Deacon, made his own soda thanks to SodaStream, while Busy and her daughter, Birdie, got to work at the arts and crafts table. Jason Bateman also brought along 4-year-old Francesca, while Modern Family's Julie Bowen and Soleil Moon Frye also brought their kids. Ryan wrapped up the weekend with Deacon while his mom, Reese Witherspoon, was off at the MTV Movie Awards. Reese took home the ceremony's Generation Award with an empowering speech that was aimed squarely at aspiring actresses who feel the need to share sex tapes or naked photos. She kept the celebrations coming afterward as well, joining pals Chelsea Handler and Jennifer Aniston for the MTV Movie Awards afterparty at Soho House.
Enter Soleil Moon Frey's home and you'd expect to see expertly hung photos and impeccably placed furniture. But according to the actress and mom of two – Poet, 5, Jagger, 3, – that's the furthest thing from reality. The self-proclaimed "messy mom" opened up to me about how her home life inspired the title of her new book and what her girls thing of her time spent as Punky Brewster.
LilSugar: Your upcoming book is called Happy Chaos. Can you define Happy Chaos and what it means to you?
Soleil Moon Frey: It’s the happiness in the chaos. If you go into our home, there are multiple walls that have Sharpie drawings all over them. If you flip our cushions upside down, you’ll find nail polish. If you look at a wall, you’ll find black paint. As the kids are throwing the pancakes up in the air, and they’re throwing the syrup, as they’re tracking paint in the house, it’s all of that chaos and yet they’re the happiest moments of our lives.
LS: Fill in the blanks. You know you're a mother when?
SMF: You walk out of the house with your sweater on inside out and spit-up in your hair.
LS: The best trick my mama taught me is _____?
SMF: To believe in myself. And I could do anything I could set my mind to.
LS: If I could only carry one photo of my children with me, it would be ____?
SMF: That would nearly be impossible! It would be a collage. On my phone I have a collage I made for the girls because I literally couldn’t just pick one. And that is my wallpaper.
LS: I wish someone would have told ____ about motherhood.
SMF: That I would never be perfect.
LS: Have Poet and Jagger seen Punky Brewster? What do they think of it?
SMF: They have caught a few moments here and there; they’ve caught some YouTube. They love it! They really think it’s hysterical. They sit and laugh at me. The other day I had my hair in a ponytail and Poet turned to me and said, "Mom – you look like Punky!"
Has social media become the new village it takes to raise a child? For many mamas, the anonymous world of the Internet has replaced the traditional community our own mothers turned to for advice on bringing up baby.
It's certainly the case for Soleil Moon Frye. The actress, wife, and mom of two, Poet, 5, Jagger, 3, felt lost after giving birth, as if someone had forgotten to hand her the mom manual. She turned to Twitter and Facebook to share her frustrations and ask her questions, quickly building a loyal following of new moms feeling the same way. I spoke with Soleil about the recent phenomenon and how it helped her form the idea for her upcoming book, Happy Chaos. Here are some highlights:
On why she turned to social media in the first place: "I talked to friends about different things and questions I had. But more than anything, I really did feel so lost. And I would literally have been calling my mom and my friends every five seconds. Because I had no clue what was going on."
On what the Internet was providing new moms: "I would go onto blogs and I would see the mom sitting and cutting the vegetables so perfectly. Everything I saw made it look so easy, and I (thought) 'OK am I the only one that finds this so hard? Am I the only one that falls on her face when walking out the door? Or forgets the diaper bag at home? Or has the explosion in the car with the diaper?' These parents are making it look so easy!"