Tag Archives: exmochallenge

ExMo Challenge – Seriously This Time

ExMo alum Shannon Noel and I were supposed to start another round of the ExMo Challenge last Monday but somewhere between Palm Spring and LA that got lost….

So, we begin this Monday.

If you are interested in making some healthy lifestyle changes for 30 days or 30 weeks(gulp, go Shannon) feel free to join us. We are unprofessionals but real moms struggling with work, kids, tendencies towards indulging and we will help inspire you(?) or at least we can be in it together. We did this last July and we both went 30 days and fulfilled our goals.

Totally typical scene in Hollywood. I was like 4 months pregnant here. That’s how big I got during each pregnancy. Not joking.

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

ExMo Challenge: 2 Weeks “Post 30 Days”

A woman forwarded this speech to me.



It’s from the Tedx series.

It’s just what I needed to hear. The speaker, Brene Brown, speaks about the power of vulnerability. I had never heard of her but I wish she was my neighbor. On her blog it says “Maybe stories are just data with a soul.”

During the ExMo Challenge I spoke about just having to sit in my discomfort when I felt it, not numbing myself but rather just letting it ride it’s course through me.

She talks about being vulnerable and how if we mask our vulnerability we will also mask our joy, making us depressed.

Lately, all day, every day, I seem to walk around with the broken record of how did I make myself so vulnerable? 3 kids? Three little lives to worry about. Yet I’m worrying and shutting myself down so much I’m feeling not enough of the good stuff.

Pregnant with my first.


She talks about how we are the most:


In Debt



Group of Americans in our US history. Which by the way when people always say, well, that’s how I was raised and look I’m fine, see, I’m fine, I have to wonder if we really are just fine.

Sometimes I feel like people think that in sharing stories we complain too much, share too much. I disagree

You really should listen to it. Just start playing it, do something else and maybe like me you’ll stop and be taken in.




ExMo Hike

Yesterday a few of us met up and went for a morning hike. It was a beautiful, cool LA morning. We hiked up to the Griffith Observatory. We were laughing so much as we asked someone to take our picture he asked us if we were from here.


We talked about the ExMo Challenge. Shannon is looking mighty amazing if I do say so myself.

We talked about how this week we(Shannon and myself) did drink again, hesitantly and with some fear.

I know I don’t want to get back into the habit of nightly wine drinking but with this onslaught of heat I must say wine tastes pretty good to me.

I’m still working out hard and eating more protein, so I’m staying the course. But it’s a real issue trying to figure out how much alcohol you will allow or our able to stop/start back into your life.

On Friday I lost my iPhone.

I had a very good day without it.

I actually didn’t want to find it, at least not fast.

I thought about actually getting rid of it and going to a phone that just allows calls. I do like the iPhone for travel though.

So…my next ExMoChallenge will be iPhone related.

When Benny, my oldest, was little I didn’t have one, I simply checked my emails when he napped. My new goal is to not carry around my iPhone. I will use it when the kids are napping or at night or of course if I’m without them and NOT driving. Never when driving. 

As soon as I found my phone I felt my mind split again.

I felt the kids clamoring for my attention.

I’m so sick of that feeling. I’m tired of reading about news that scares me and leaves me almost immobilized constantly.

So, here we go, a break from the iPhone. A much needed break.

I don’t need to catch every single beautiful moment on camera.

IMG_2827 IMG_1667

OK, OK, you get the picture.

I need to capture their eye contact.

I also would rather have real time with humans. I’m kind of lonely, that’s another post though. And please don’t consider stalking me, I’m not THAT lonely. But I long for the image of these two older Iowa women who I watched sit on their patio and talk every day I last visited Des Moines, about 5 years ago.

I only saw the back of their gray heads but I was envious. So I need to work on building a porch, installing a swing and making and deepening friendships with people, in the flesh.

Love to hear from any of you that are challenging yourselves in different ways. Drop us a line if you have time.

Meet Upcoming Chicago Performer Shannon Noel

LA mom Shannon Noel is no stranger to Expressing Motherhood. We’ve been lucky enough to have had her talent as part of our show for years now. Shannon was also the friend who started the ExMo Challenge with me over wine and food in July. She’s awesome and we are delighted to have her in our Chicago show.


Mom and Boys 2013
This is me and boys – we love cowboy boots.


 Where do you live, how many kids do you have, ages?
I live in Silverlake, an awesome little neighborhood in the hills not far from downtown Los Angeles.  I have a 3 year old son named Riley and a 4 year old son named Booker.
How are you creative post children? How has it changed since pre-baby?
Pre-babies I performed sketch comedy, improv and stand up all over Los Angeles.  Most of my shows didn’t even begin until 9 or 10pm at the earliest.  And then there was a lot of hanging out afterwards until the very wee hours of the morning.  It was a lot of fun but these days if my boys are asleep (which is rare) I like to be asleep as well.  I find that writing on my own time is much more conducive to my working mom schedule.  When Stacie and I plan ourI’m Not From Here But My Kids Are shows we always consider our audience – mostly moms – and try to have them out the door no later than 10!
family shot 2012
This is my gang! This picture makes me so happy. We have a lot of fun.
When do you find time to create?
My commute to work is an hour each way.  I do a lot of creating while on this drive.  You can see me pulled over to the side with my notebook and pen on any given morning.  If by some miracle my boys go to sleep before 9pm, I try to write until I just can’t keep my eyes open anymore.
A recent photo of Shannon with her friend Amy Levinson. Both have done and/or are doing the ExMoChallenge.
How did you hear about ExMo?
 I got an e-mail from a former writing teacher, Amy Friedman.  She had heard about the show and knew that I was focusing my efforts on “writing what you know” ie; breast pumps and pacis – so thought it would be a good fit for me.  She was right!  It has been a life changer for me.  I really want to thank her for that first e-mail!
Do you have a background in acting/writing? 
Yes.  I have been performing and writing in some capacity since I was 8 years old, when I played the role of Hildegard Hamcocker, a toothless, singing, town flirt in the school play.  When I heard my brother, who never laughs at anything, laugh at something I said on stage, I was hooked.  I love the theater.  Honestly, I cannot imagine my life without it.  I’m still singing but luckily I still have my teeth.
What creative projects are you up to? 
I’m doing a lot of work on my blog, www.lullabiesformommy.com.  I really love this outlet and want to get more active on my site.  I’ve been doing it for 4 years but am still very much a beginning blogger.  Stacie Burrows and I are having a blast writing songs for our next I’m Not From Here installment.  We have so much fun creating together it’s ridiculous.  She really is my comedy soul mate and I cannot imagine my life without her.  She also has (energetic) 2 boys and is my mommy mentor!  We are both Southern too and we like our cowboy boots and mason jars – I’m will be forever grateful to ExMo for introducing me to one of my best friends.  I also love to create and write with Lindsay for her Fix the Toaster Blog.  Her passion for road safety is contagious and I am so happy to be a part of her movement.  I’m a contributor on Felicity Huffman’s WhattheFlicka.com as well. My goal for this next year is to write more!  
Billy Crystal and Shannon
This is a benefit of my day job at the Geffen Playhouse. Who doesn’t love this guy?
Boys Eating!
My boys and Stacie’s boys enjoying a feast during a camping trip we took together last summer!
These are my superheroes!
Jon Stewart and Me2(1)
Another benefit of my day job. I was the assistant to the Producer of this Oscar show. He’s one of my faves!  Super fun!

Los Angeles Moms Join Us Tomorrow For The Rose Run

LA moms interested in getting some exercise tomorrow morning join us for The Rose Run.


The Rose Run was started by producing partner Jessica Cribbs in 2009 in honor of her mom Rose Hunt who passed away from breast cancer.

Come get your groove on. It’s helping me stick to my #exmochallenge of exercising 5 times a week.

A Runner’s Circle – 3216 Los Feliz Blvd, LA, CA
PARK on Los Feliz or Glen Feliz

5K or 5 mile option
$20 donation to benefit patients with breast cancer (direct services including travel, gas, nutrition, etc)
includes tshirt, goodie bag, and post run snacks

7:00 – 7:30 check in and register
7:30-7:45am warm up and remembrance circle
7:45am – start
10:00am – event finishes

5K or 5mile options take runners along the LA River – you’ll see how pretty this river can be with wildlife a plenty!
Water stop at 5K turnaround (1.55 miles) – 5 milers will have a water table near Autry
Post run we will have refreshments.

**Runners and walkers as well as strollers and kids welcome – this event is not timed so you may stroll at your leisure