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// she's only happy in the sun.
May 12
May 12

letters to phoenix // 5.

dear phoenix,

hi baby boy! you are three months old today, and by my calculations this means you’ve been on this side of your womb world for a grand total of 90 days. i think that deserves celebrating. i could eat crème brûlée and in turn, you’d (sort of) be eating crème brûlée in a few hours. but alas, your dad and mamani are currently dieting which means there are NO treats in this house. mini-tangent: in an act of rebellion, i bought a container of coconut macaroons last night. and then came home and ate them all for dinner. you know, like a responsible adult. but my foray into the world of decadence back-lashed when you woke up at 3am on some kind of evil sugar high and refused to go back to sleep. in conclusion, no amount of macaroons taste as good as 3am sleep feels.

everyone told me that things would get easier once you hit the three month mark, and i’m happy to report that all those people were not the disillusioned giant liar-pants that i had suspected them to be. over the past couple of weeks a certain transformation did happen and you started sleeping better and busting out that juicy grin of yours more, and suddenly this whole parenting thing felt less like a mysterious, terrifying abyss that i was falling into and more like hey, i might be able to climb this mountain after all. and whoa, the view from up here is actually pretty awesome. even though my legs are tired and i need a snack.

so that’s progress!

i think it also took me these past 12 weeks to really internalize that i am not alone on some island for clumsy, weepy, woefully under-prepared parents. there are hundreds of us, thousands perhaps. all trying to figure it out day by day. i guess it’s just not really talked about as we stand bleary-eyed in line to get our decaf espresso because we are all so busy pretending that we have our crap together, and we don’t want to seem ungrateful or weak, and let’s face it, the general public doesn’t need to know the intimate details of the vomit-fest 2012 when our crap definitely wasn’t together. but over these past weeks i’ve gotten so many kind messages and emails that all echo the same sentiment of: i *get* what you’re going through. i’ve been there/i’m still there. and it’s OK. you will be OK.

so here i am phixy, on the other side of 12 weeks, madly in love with you and charmed by your every facial expression. i love watching you as you greedily explore your new world and absorb the tiniest details – the patterns the light makes on the walls, the texture of your blanket, the way the sun filters through the tree branches overhead as we take our afternoon walks. in turn, i see the world through your beautiful eyes and it becomes new to me too. i’ve experienced a lot in my three decades of life, but over three short months, you have been the one to teach me how to live in the moment and to fully appreciate the magic of right ‘now’.



May 12

twelve weeks. and a day.

i have a feeling this post might be a bit complainy, so to offset all of that, watch this adorable video of an elderly couple figuring out how to use their webcam.  even though i’m anxious to always keep up with technology, i’m already struggling. siri refuses to complete any task i give her – i was proud of teaching her that devon is my husband but then it took me 30 minutes to convince her that ‘devon gundry SP’ and ‘dev’ are, in fact, the same person. and now every time i ask her to call my husband she condescendingly asks “which husband?” ugh. really siri? i don’t need your sass.


i really wanted to write phoenix a letter to mark his 12th week, but then like so many of my intentions recently, life got in the way. this life. this life where i sleep for two hour intervals throughout the night and phix wakes at 6am wanting to be entertained. i’m poor entertainment value at 6am. or let’s be honest, anytime before 10am. so he gets disgruntled with me and complains. his dad then takes over, and that keeps him happy for a few precious minutes while i close my eyes and pretend to sleep while pushing aside pointless jealousy of the pre-baby me that used to wake whenever i damn well pleased.

i always feel five steps behind these days. i used to pride myself on my multi-tasking skills. my ability to juggle numerous projects without breaking my stride. i had a voracious love for constant momentum and expansion and learning how to do something. and then figuring out how to do it even better. i’ve had my fair share of all-nighters and jumping into the deep end of a project and having to learn how to swim.

but this whole becoming a mother, literally overnight, has humbled me. left me disheveled and confused, wearing the same t-shirt for three days with the longest hair i’ve had in my life tumbled into a nest on top of my head. when phix does finally nap i find myself doing a myriad of small tasks. wiping down countertops and sweeping the floor (again). i think i’m drawn to these tasks because they are finite. the counter is dirty and i clean it. and it’s done. i’ve accomplished SOMETHING. whereas with my work tasks, things like helping to build a production company and generate ideas for a full-blown tv series and be on my A-game when we meet with some of the most creative minds in the industry, feel so immense and all-consuming. they need my focus and attention, and can’t just be knocked out in between nursing and a diaper change.

and sometimes i feel like i’m doing a half-decent job. my baby is a plump 14 pounds now. his blue eyes twinkle and he charms strangers with his smiles. he is observant and attentive and there are *some* nights when he goes to sleep without too much fuss at 8pm and i feel like handing our team (mamani, dev and myself) gold medals for our fantastic effort.

but then i read about five-star moms that take their babies on daily adventures, picnics in the park, music classes and yoga, and i feel like a failure because we haven’t left our neighborhood in days. it doesn’t help that phix currently hates being in his car seat and cries from point a to point b. driving in LA can be stressful enough without a little human in the back seat screaming at you.

and here’s what our baby monitor looks like 90% of the time that phix is supposed to be napping:


things that i have loved lately:

1. rebecca woolf saying it better than i can.

2. a beautifully photographed blackberry goat cheese tart recipe.

3. this brilliant article about why no one should ever say they are ‘ready’ to have a baby.


in lieu of a letter here’s a quick list of phix’s major milestones:

1. he got cuter. i don’t really know how this happens. i mean, surely there is a cap on cuteness right? but he keeps exceeding it. one day it felt like i fell asleep with a squishy baby and then awoke to a bright eyed little boy. his smiles are so charming that they make me blush. i’m not kidding. i think it’s due to the fact that he bestows them very discerningly. he doesn’t just waltz around with a big grin on his face. in fact, most of the time he has a very serious i’m-studying-you (and you need a shower) look on his face. so when he does smiles at you, you feel like the most important person in the room.

2. he discovered his hands. and they have fast become his most favorite past-time. he is constantly cramming as many fingers as he can into his mouth and making loud slurping noises as if he is relishing every last morsel and needs us to be fully aware of just how.delicious.he.is.

3. he gave a girl a hickey. ok, so that sounds much worse than it is. our dear friend came to visit for the weekend and she helped put phix to sleep by rocking him in her arms. since she obviously couldn’t nurse him, resourceful phix took this opportunity to clamp his little mouth onto her bicep and fell asleep sucking on her arm – resulting in a pretty intense hickey. or four. i don’t really blame him though. this is what you get if you show up to my house with your limbs all nice and tanned from your sojourn in hawaii.

4. the indie singer songwriter channel on pandora has to be playing (loudly) for phix to fall asleep. do you know HOW MANY TIMES I’VE LISTENED TO JEFF BUCKLEY’S HALLELUJAH? too many times. that’s how many.

5. phix still loves water. and most mornings, we take showers together. is that controversial these days? i don’t care. there is nothing much more awesome than holding his chubby little body as we both bask in the streaming hot water. it’s safe to say that there is nothing in the world that smells better to me than my freshly showered baby with his long damp eyelashes.


appropriately, this quote found its way to me today:

 “Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness. How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you are having at the moment.” ― Eckhart Tolle

May 12

devon hugh.

one of the most amazing things about phoenix entering our lives has been watching devon grow and expand to embrace the role of papa-hood. if you know dev, then you know that he doesn’t really know how to do anything half-way. if i suggest we watch a half hour show before bed, dev wants to watch the entire season. i agree to buying one bag of chocolate nutty clusters from trader joes, and dev leaves the store armed with 7 different assorted treats. when he sets his mind on something he gives it his all, and his approach to being a dad is no different. he is 1000% involved, attentive, present and willing to do whatever it takes to be the best dad he can be. this is awesome on so many levels, which makes up for the times when it’s just plain annoying – like when he would pester me every.single.day of my pregnancy to make sure i was drinking enough water (out of glass bottles only!) and eating enough protein (i’ve never eaten more eggs than i have over the past year).

i’m not surprised by dev’s level of devotion to little phix, but i am somewhat taken back by just how fiercely overprotective he is of his little one. if you so much as *think* about coughing near phix, it is likely dev will kick you out of our home faster than you can say tuberculosis.

phix’s relationship to his dad is also heart-expanding. he definitely ‘knows’ his papa, and there are certain occasions when the only thing that will soothe his fussiness is dev holding him tightly while they sit in a a barely lit room listening to music together. sometimes i spy on them in this state with phix resting his head gently on his papa’s shoulder, and devon’s entire hand supporting his little back as he whisper-shouts “don’t worry phoenix. don’t worry. i love you. i am your best friend” over and over again.

and when i watch them during their ‘music time’ i feel such a surge of love for both of them that i fear my heart will break open. they are so achingly sweet and so evidently besotted with each other.

from the moment i met dev it was obvious to me that he was going to be a wonderful dad one day. and i was right. he is joyful, patient, generous, kind and loving. i once read this piece of advice about choosing a partner and it said “find a man who you would be happy for your future sons to grow up to be like”. i can say, without hesitation, that i would be so happy for phix to turn out just like his papa.

happy birthday my love!


May 12

five things on a friday

so last night was, in two words, a nightmare. my mum and i contracted some kind of food poisoning bug and spent the entire night throwing up. taking turns in our one bathroom while dev kept an eye on phix while feeling pretty seedy himself. it was one of those nights that you wake up from utterly defeated. i’m trying to keep up my milk supply for phix so i’m now sipping ice water and craving one of those cheap red popsicles that we’d get as kids. i don’t even know what flavor they are. the ‘red’ flavor i guess.

and even though it would have made for an AMAZING blog post, i’m just SO grateful that the bug decided to wait till the evening to attack us from the inside out. imagine if it had decided to make its grand entrance during our meeting with O and her team. somehow, i think me in my hot pink dress  throwing up in the wastebasket nonstop would have been just a little distracting/disturbing.


two of my most beloveds are going to be visiting us in LA this weekend and i’m super excited. i’ve been blessed with some phenomenal friends and spending time with them is a refueling like no other. #grateful


i don’t know if you saw this time magazine cover doing the rounds yesterday – there was a lot of heated debate about it. i read some articles about the controversy with some interest – after all i’m a breastfeeding mama and i’m curious about this subject. and then this morning i found this blog post that beautifully summed up my thoughts about the whole issue.


the folks at Artspace recently contacted me and asked if would spread the word about a Pinterest contest they’re hosting. it’s easy to enter – just complete these 5 easy steps & one grand prize winner will receive a $1,000 Artspace eGift card. awesomesauce.

(1) Follow Artspace on Pinterest.

(2) Create a Board and call it “Art I love”

(3) Go to Artspace.com and find at least five works of art that you love and pin them to your board. Include #artspacefaves in the description of each pin.

(4) Write one sentence in the board description that explains how art inspires you.

(5) Re-pin the Artful Pinterest Contest official pin to complete your entry.

Full terms and conditions here. HAPPY PINNING!


this. enough said:

May 12

thursday round up.

1. our little trip to tennessee was lovely. dev got to be there for his younger brother’s graduation, and i got to squeeze some of my favorite people in the world. i will always have a soft spot in my heart for tennessee – it is the place where my heart was broken, mended, and given a second chance. the second we stepped off the plane we were greeted with the smell of BBQ wafting through the terminal and a band playing live country music. welcome to nashville YA’LL. phix was a total gem on the plane both there and back. as we approached our seats i could tell our seat neighbors were torn between thinking ‘oh no, screamy baby alert’ (!) and ‘well, at least he’s a cute one’. but he was SUCH a good baby. he slept the entire time, except for thirty minutes where he woke up to bat his eyelashes, smile at his grandma’s and cause the flight attendant’s ovaries to explode.

2. i have always loved the idea of taking children’s art and turning it into another sort of tangible form – like paintings, or photos. so when ashley sent me this link to a studio that creates toys modeled precisely from kid’s drawings, i was instantly a fan.

3. if you watch the soulpancake shorts on the oprah winfrey network, you already know that i’m a sucker for street stunts that leave you smiling. this is a good one :)

4. today we had an in-person meeting with oprah(!) about the future of soulpancake. and i can sum it up by saying that the future of soulpancake is so very bright and beautiful! the whole 1.5 hr meeting i tried really hard to be composed and coherent. but inside i was a messy jumble of nerves and excitement because well, it’s OPRAH. and i am sitting directly across from her and she is speaking to me and holding eye contact. it’s days like today when all the hard-work, and sacrifices, and striving for excellence, and all-nighters, and literal tears, all finally pay off. because there we are having a conversation with the queen of television about what a full length SoulPancake show could look like. and she is telling our team that what we do, is exactly why she created her network – to give people another way to explore the facets of our human, yet spiritual, experience in life. #whoa #whoa #whoa

5. meanwhile, i’m insanely smitten with a certain baby bear:

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