The CHOC Walk In The Park Brought Tears To My Eyes

Humbled By This Man

A week ago, I was able to attend the CHOC Walk In The Park. This was the Children’s Hospital of Orange County Walk In Disneyland. This annual fundraiser is an enormous event and raised $1.8 million dollars to support the care, family services, education and research that CHOC provides for the region’s children in Southern California.

The photo I’m showing above happens to be my favorite picture from the event. The man with the backpack, holding the sign…was completely still, as people moved around him. That sign held the name of a loved child for whom he was walking.

And this is why people walked.

They were all in groups or ‘teams’ and each had raised a minimum of $50 for each person to participate in the walk. 16,000 people took off in two heats through Disneyland and California Adventure raising money for the place that had treated someone they loved, or someone’s someone that person loved.

Every step of the foot had intent behind it.

Team Ms Bossy Boots

Every individual there had someone in mind. And if you had participated in this event not knowing a soul, but just to participate, there was no way you were leaving without knowing someone’s story…or a child’s picture embedded into your memory permanently.

As a mother, Human Being, this event is a hard one. Our children are precious. They are innocent. And when terrible things happen to our children, the strings are pulled tight.



Yup, it does.

The children to the right, lost their older brother, Masher. He was 20 when he died of cancer and had received treatment at CHOC.

I did learn of an amazing program at CHOC, that it seems not many children’s hospitals may have…

… A program for young adults, young adults that can still develop children’s cancers. Beyond that, a program that helps educate and ready young adults for real life after a life-threatening illness or permanent disabilities.

Everything I have learned about CHOC in the past week makes me happy.

Newsboys singing their hearts out!
Spinning Teacups

In good ‘ol Disney fashion, no stone is left unturned. Disneyland had everything on at 6am! The teacups were spinning, the water displays were on, the characters were out in full display from princesses to the little boy and his dog from UP!




Disneyland is the perfect place to hold such an event. As if this place isn’t magical enough, just fill it with 16,000 people with stories to melt your heart, make you cry and count your blessings…. you’ll never be the same.


Tower of Terror
Paradise Pier
Team Devon

DSC_0062IMG_3376It’s not too late to help make this $1.8 Million go to the goal of $2 Million this year!
CLICK HERE to donate to CHOC!

Find CHOCWalk
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Tarzana & Palm Springs

Tomorrow Expressing Motherhood is headed to Tarzana Hospital to put on a mini ExMo show.

Nicole Blaine, an ExMo alum, brought this idea to us and she has produced it. I look forward to it. I’ll be reading my “Notes From a Good Girl” piece.

I was born at this hospital so it will hold significance to me.

Then I’m off to Palm Springs for Go Mighty.

What a fun weekend in store indeed.

I do love this show and all the women who participate.



My space themed homemade hat from tin foil, kids art stuff and some lights from Jo-Ann's Fabrics.  So Palm Springs.
My space themed homemade hat from tin foil, kids art stuff and some lights from Jo-Ann’s Fabrics.
So Palm Springs.

ExMo Challenge Time

Shannon and I are going to do another ExMo Challenge, starting this Monday. After some potential debauchery for me in the desert.


Woah, I just re-read Shannon’s text, she’s doing 30 weeks!!

Stand by I just texted her to see if she’s ready to start this on Monday.

Her text:

I’m doing it! 30 weeks. No flour dairy sugar. Except one night a week drinking with a 2 drink limit. Hahahaha. This 30 weeks will take me to my birthday on June 2.



I was feeling good about signing up for 30 days. I did feel so great after our ExMoChallenge this summer and I’ve felt worse and worse in regards to my AVNRT, it’s a fast heartbeat every once in awhile that can be brought on especially by caffeine, lack of sleep and alcohol.

ER visit on January 1st.  Body was saying drink more water. Get more sleep. Take it easy and do less. Just took going there to listen.
ER visit on January 1st.
Body was saying drink more water. Get more sleep. Take it easy and do less. Just took going there to listen.

I’m taking beta blockers and I don’t like the way they make me feel. As if an elephant is sitting on my heart, then I start to get scared and have to take a long acting xanax.

This is all new to me so I’m figuring it out. My alternative is a catheter ablation. I want to avoid that but right now something needs to change. This is not life threatening at all, if it is don’t tell me! Just a nuisance and a bit unnerving.

So first up, making it healthier again.

My goals:

1. Exercise 5 times a week

2. Alcohol one night a week (2 drink cap – hahahahah – but seriously)

3. Only meat will be from the sea, I’ve been leaning this way for awhile now.

4. Seeing a friend every week. (Imperative for a healthy, functioning heart & my family)

So, how about you?

If you want to join, we’ll start this Monday.

Shannon just texted me again:

The number 42 has received considerable attention in popular culture as a result of its central appearance in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy as the “Answer to The Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything.” Gotta be ready for that! Hahaha

And that’s why I love Shannon, as well as everyone else does!

Shannon Noel
Shannon Noel

On Miscarriage

It’s 7:21PM and I just put my oldest child to bed. He is 7.

I have 3 kids.

I have had 1 miscarriage.

Perhaps because my husband is out biking, yes, he night bikes and perhaps because the internet is lit up with people lighting candles I feel like sharing my story.

It’s not a big deal.

That’s how I want to preface it.

I have 3 kids.

And I couldn’t handle any more. But sometimes, I find myself thinking about that little ball of energy in me who didn’t make it. I tried to get pregnant with our second child when my first was 2. I thought it would be easy.

It took a few months and we were pregnant. I was nauseous. I went in and we saw the little blip and we saw the heartbeat.

We went back and the doctor asked me if I was sure about my last menstrual period because the baby was measuring smaller. I didn’t think much about it, that Brad Pitt movie “Benjamin Button” was out and I made jokes that this guy was growing backwards, it didn’t cross my mind anything was amiss.

I put on an Expressing Motherhood in January. I announced to the audience and my friends that I was pregnant. That I was overcoming my fear and the loss of my best friend in the city the previous year, in a car crash, by creating life.

But before I went on stage I saw some blood. And I knew things were not right.

I also was feeling sick but in a different way.

When I went to the doctor there was no heartbeat.

I screamed at my husband as I walked down the stairs of UCLA to return to my car. Angry at him for not being there and angry at myself for caring so much.

Lots of people have miscarriages and have children? Why should I cry about this? Man up dude.

My doctor told me we’d do a D & C if I didn’t naturally have the miscarriage.

And that’s all the info I had.

So when all the sudden I began having horrendous cramps at my friends house I called a nurse. She must have been having a horrible day because she told me to try and collect a sample of what was passing.

I went into my friends bathroom and imagined calling out to her nanny, who is also my friend, “Hey, could you bring me a ziplock bag?”

As a rule, if you are an adult and you go into a bathroom without a child and call out to another adult for a ziplock bag it is a sign that something has gone very wrong in the bathroom.

I pressed myself against the wall and peered into the toilet.

There would be no collecting of samples.

I was only 10 weeks along.

I flushed.

I walked out and asked for my friend to call my husband. My cramps were getting bad.

Once home I started bleeding a lot.

My husband was in charge and he started running back and forth up our 3 flights of stairs between handling our 2 year-old and checking on me.

You bleed a lot during a miscarriage. Like a lot lot. Disgusting, alarming amounts.

I had him call the nurse again, as long as she doesn’t soak through more then 5 pads in an hour she’s OK.


I began having images of women in the 1800’s having their babies out in the barn, surrounded by another woman or two. And I imagined a fire.

I felt like a witch.

Like no one was suppose to know about this. It was dirty and I was to bite on a towel and grin and bare it.

The next time my husband came down I asked him, do you have any valium?

Yes, he did. Get it for me!!!

Can you do that, he asked? We looked at each other and then he ran back upstairs to retrieve it.

We lived right smack dab in the Hollywood Hills with an amazing view of the city. We had had an owl visit us nightly for a few years.


It had been waking us up for years. We were pretty pissed at that owl. My husband had a bee bee gun and I made him promise not to shoot the owl.

Suddenly between my images, trips to the bathroom, I heard a BB gun being cocked.

It really was the 1800’s now.


Except I was 15 minutes away from The Grove and Cedars Sinai and yet I was doing this all alone at home, with very little instructions. Again, why I didn’t Google it is beyond me.

I stopped bleeding after an hour. I didn’t cry.

I wish my doctor had forewarned me about what might happen. I should have at least Googled the thing. Geez.

I advise all women who might miscarry to get some valium, why not? It hurts.  A little valium helps.

The next morning the owl visited us for the last time as if to say OK, look I’m still here but I get the point.

Then he flew off.

It was all sort of mystical for a couple of neurotic, city dwelling Hollywood folk.

Sometimes I am struck with a sadness and yes, I still tell myself to chin up but I try to also allow myself a second to allow myself to feel sad.

For me miscarriage was about the most antiquated thing I have ever done in this very modern world we live in.

When a beautiful arrangement of white flowers arrived at my doorsteps from a distant cousin with a card attached, I was deeply touched. And I wondered perhaps if she too knew of the strange secrecy and mix of emotions that comes along with a miscarriage.

Expressing Motherhood is headed to Go Mighty

I am headed to Palm Springs this weekend to participate in a blogger retreat called Camp Mighty.




Elizabeth Jayne Liu just let me know about it this morning.

So Palm Springs, here I come.

I try to do one mom blogging conference a year and this is driving distance and I have some family in town this weekend so I’m covered.

I will cancel another blogger event as it’s too much money otherwise but this seems like a great time to me!

Are you headed there?

On The Fence About Submitting?

Get off the fence and jump on in to a challenge.

We want to hear your story.
No, you don’t have to dress like this.
We just happen to love dress up over in these woods.

As a former performer said, challenges to ourselves as we grow older grow further and further apart. Now every day with kids and without them really is a challenge but we are referring to really getting you out of your comfort zone.

IMG_9369 IMG_9373

I hope that you consider submitting your piece if you are at all interested.

We accept pieces about motherhood. We’ve had dads, sons and some women who can not have children share their stories as well.

For more submission info please click here.

My Daughter’s Life Was Saved By Our Children’s Hospital. Join Me At The CHOC Walk This Weekend!

IMG_3289This weekend at Disneyland, the 2013 CHOC Walk will take place…and I’ll be there.

For the details of what this picture of my newborn is all about, read it here…


My husband and I support all things Children’s Hospital. We know the absolute importance of facilities specialized to our little ones in need.

This weekend in Disneyland, The Children’s Hospital, Orange County is holding a fundraiser and I will be walking in support of other families who need the help we did.


This is my husband and I holding our daughter at Children’s Hospital LA after her heart surgery.

So young.. so naive…so tired.




Join me this weekend at Disneyland!

Find out how….here!


Our New Expressing Motherhood Maternity Shirts Are A Hit! Two Local Moms Stop By To Model Our Newest Addition

Allison1This morning, local mom Allison Davis, left her doctor appointment to come model a few shirts for us. Allison is a wife to Seth, a mother to two girls and is expecting a boy on..or around..November, 18th.

Thank you Allison!

We are so excited to have comfy maternity shirts available, and we think they look great on her.

We also think they make great gifts for others…or yourself!

Another local mom, Holly Gritton and her 4 month old Lucas, dropped by and we couldn’t resist getting a quick pic of them as well. You can see Holly’s pictures below.

Thank you so much Holly and Allison!



Allison3 Allison5


Our Tshirts, Maternity Tshirts, Mugs and Sweatshirts are all available now. Please visit our ExMo Gear page for more details!

Hallmark’s “Home And Family”

Tomorrow I’m heading down to see my friend and on air personality Jill Simonian on her new show “Home and Family” on the Hallmark Channel. Jill is really a cool woman. No non-sense, hands on, positive  and hard working mom.


I’m going to be dressed by Target! Woo-hoo. All of my husband’s money spent at Target is finally paying off.


I have known this and had this whole plan of working out a lot and drinking a lot of water. But the reality of the situation is I had two kids all weekend solo, age 3 and 2 and a Bobcat eat one of our chickens and last night woke up to a coyote lingering outside of the coop.


My little ones have been waking up at around 3AM.

Needless to say no exercising and very little water, totally normal mom stuff.

So, I went and got my first ever airbrush tan and I think it’s hiding it all quite nicely.

The show will air this Thursday, October 10th.