It started in the lounge at BlogHer. “DID SOMEONE SAY TIM GUNN IS HERE?” “TIM. GUNN.” “WHEN IS HE COMING?” “DOES ANYONE KNOW WHEN TIM GUNN IS COMING?” “WHERE WILL HE BE?” “bTrendie, WHO?” “WHERE AM I?”

I finally figured out he was going to be at the Tide Booth on the BlogHer Expo Floor. I cried a bit when I realized I was going to have to miss Jenny the Bloggess‘s panel to meet him — DAMMIT — but, she and I talked about it and agreed that seeing TIM GUNN was a BlogHer priority. (And, FYI, I still get to catch Jenny’s panel liveblogged at blogher.com. Sweet. See, you CAN have your cake and eat it, too. Mmm, cake.)

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I started crying as soon as I GOT IN LINE to see Tim Gunn. There were about 30 people in front of me, and I was convinced that I was Tim Gunn’s #1 fan. Until the girl in front of me whipped out her Project Runway DVD ready for Tim to sign…. Then, I wasn’t sure if there was maybe a tie for first.

I was a little embarrassed that I was BAWLING in line, at BlogHer, waiting to see Tim Gunn. Because I’m by no means a fashionista. INDEED, I was wearing Lululemon yoga pants and running shoes with a semi-nice shirt. FAUX. PAS. But, something tells me Tim didn’t notice.

Immediately, when he saw me, teary-eyed and muttering “Animals. Thanx you for the animals,” he grabbed my hands and we got to serious talking.

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See, as everyone (EVERYONE) in line that day NOW knows, Tim isn’t JUST a fashion guru, he’s an animal activist. One of the FIERCEST (Tyra Banks FIERCE, that is) kind. Yes, he tirelessly works with PETA to teach the fashion industry and all the world about the cruelty of the fur and skin industry.

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He claims that ANIMALS are “Fashion’s Worst victims” and fights hard for them by teaching design schools and the world’s most famous designers how their fur makes it to the design table. (The link to his very graphic video — which will make you quit leather, I warn you — can be found on my sidebar, IN my Tim Gunn index of posts. ahem. LOVE!)

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In our moments together, he repeated “we have to stick together!” to win the fight for animals. And he took my business card…. He told me one of the designers on the upcoming season of Project Runway tried to use fur in one of the challenges, and that he REEMED the designer so bad the incident had to be cut and edited so that Tim didn’t look like a total psycho (I paraphrase). There is no fur permitted on Project Runway.

It was a moment to remember. And I showed THIS to everyone — especially to him, and her, and her…, and rambled on and on AND ON to the poor things about TIM….

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APPARENTLY, he wrote “Make It Work!!” on everyone’s photo (even on his other #1 fan’s photo — I checked). But, on MINE, he wrote “THANK YOU FOR MAKING IT WORK!!” Even in my lululemons, bad hair and running shoes, Tim Gunn said I make it work. I. MAKE IT WORK. IMAKEITWORK. Awesome.

Awesome.

Seriously, to meet someone who does SO MUCH for a cause I don’t frikken EAT for (vegan)…? Precious! Precious.

Precious.

I LOVE YOU TIM GUNN!

Sigh…. It was as good as the 6-foot PYTHON I held on my shoulders in Spain five years ago. The tingles stick around for days. Weeks.

In other news, I’m a CHAIR PERSON! Yes, I’m chair of this incredible bTrendie Power Mom Advisory Board:

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From left to right, top to bottom: Kristen Chase, Tracey Gaughran-Perez, Amanda Hill, Liza Sabater, Jeneane Sessum, Lisa Estall, Halley Suitt, Denise Howell, Leslie Flinger, and ME!

I may be the chair of this awesome board, but that doesn’t mean I’m the boss of them, FYI, because LOOK AT THEM. They are totally the boss of me. TOTALLY. I just lead the phone calls, craft the agendas, and work with each talented member individually to get the most out of her unique expertise.

Why am I telling you this today, you ask? BECAUSE TODAY WAS THE BIG REVEAL! All week, I’ve been working feverishly with the bTrendie PR team to get the word out about this great group of women and what they’re doing for bTrendie. I took Baltimore and Boston, saturating their media peeps with deets on our new board. Here’s the release, and the bios of all these awesome women — CHECK IT! How COOL is this?

Advisors Help Shape User Experience and Sales Events for bTrendie’s
Private Shopping Community

New York – August 4, 2009 – bTrendie™, the mom-approved shopping community that features trend-setting products for baby and mom at up to 60% off, has named its advisory board of online Power Moms. The board will provide a mom’s-eye view that furthers bTrendie’s mission of providing members unrivaled access to mom-approved products within an exciting, engaging, and informative community.

“We are inspired by these accomplished women and honored to have the benefit of their experience as we focus on growing our business and expanding our service,” said bTrendie Co-Founder Emily Rayson. “The passion and creativity of our advisors — combined with their range of expertise in business, technology, blogging, fashion, law, and, of course, parenting — gives us the inside story on what our members expect, and how we can best exceed those expectations.”

The following members comprise bTrendie’s all-star team of Power Mom advisors:

Kristen Chase is the author of the popular weblog Motherhood Uncensored and writes Mominatrix, a featured column at The Imperfect Parent. Her first book, “The Mominatrix’s Guide to Sex” will be released in December 2009. Kristen is also Publisher and Chief Operating Officer of Cool Mom Picks, a cheeky product and service review blog, and Principal at Parent Bloggers Network.

Lisa Estall is a busy mom blogger with two children under the age of 4. She maintains two blogs, Mogul Baby and Mrs. Mogul. Lisa’s career background includes working in television and film in NYC. She currently writes about pop culture and the latest baby and parenting products at Babycenter and Babble.

Leslie “Flinger” has been blogging personally for six years at what she now calls The Little Black Dress Edition. She owns and is the lead developer at Catapult Web Development and holds a Masters Degree in Information Technology. Mrs. Flinger is a self-professed nerd, over-shares at Room 704 and Seattle Mom Blogs, and can be found tweeting as @MrsFlinger. She is a wife, mom of two, drinker of wine, and lover of sexy code.

Armed with a blackbelt in sarcasm, Tracey Gaughran-Perez writes about her life at SweetneyMamaPop. Tracey is a PhD dropout and ex-college professor turned parental unit and internerd blogger. She adores Jon Stewart, Indie Rock, science geekery, and underdogs in all their various incarnations. and about famous people’s lives at

Amanda Hill is a freelance writer and blogger from Kentucky who writes for her own blog, Shamelessly Sassy, as well as contributing to several others, including Babble’s Droolicious and AOL’s Lemondrop. The mother of a sassy four-year-old redhead, Amanda is a lapsed vegetarian and an avid shopper.

Denise Howell is a technology lawyer, blogger, columnist, and hosts this WEEK in LAW on TWiT.tv. Denise created one of the first law-oriented weblogs, Bag and Baggage, and writes for The American Lawyer and CBS Interactive. Her expertise on emerging technology and law has been recognized by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Wired News, The ABA Journal, The American Lawyer, and others.

ME! is queen of the slash factor – a mom/writer/blogger/consultant/art dealer/freelance writer & editor, and yoga teacher. In addition to her love of chai lattes, Haley blogs at Cheaty Monkey, contributes to Canada Moms Blog, and promotes art for kids at Kids Deserve Art. In her spare time, she shares her observations on Twitter as @Cheaty.

Liza Sabater is founder of two of the most influential political blogs in the United States, Culture Kitchen and The Daily Gotham. Liza was rated in the top 10 of last year’s Now Public MostPublic Index, a list of the 50 most influential individuals in New York’s new media market. She has been a guest on CNN.com TV, PBS’ NewsHour Online, and others. When she is not blogging or evangelizing, Liza returns to her secret life as her boys’ gym and basketball mom in New York.

A netizen since 1997, Jeneane Sessum is a social media pioneer. She started her personal blog Allied in 2001, and launched Blog Sisters, the first woman’s group blog, that same year. Jeneane was a founding Advisory Board Member and Contributing Editor for BlogHer and has been featured in Business Week and The New York Times for her insights on social media. She blogs on these topics at Jeneane.net and tweets as @Jeneane.

Halley Suitt is the CEO of Wellness Mobile, a start-up with offices in Boston, MA and Mountain View, CA. She was CEO of Top Ten Sources where she acquired the social media fashion site, Stylefeeder. She is a NASM Certified Personal Fitness Trainer and a long-time blogger, having launched Halley’s Comment in 2002. Halley has been an advisor to TotSpot, Club Mom (now Café Mom), and a keynote speaker at BlogHer. She wrote the first Harvard Business Review case study on blogging and has appeared on Oprah.

Aren’t they GORJ? LOVE! Each and every one of them.

There you have it. Longest arse blog post in the HISTORY of blogging. Complete with Tim Gunn, Mom Bloggers, PETA, and Oprah. I may have to take a few days off after this one…. Maybe.

Pssssssssst! If you want to GET IN to bTrendie.com to check it out. You’re ALWAYS welcome. Indeed, as Director of Membership and Community, I frikkin IMPLORE you. Heh. Don’t let the invite code scare you. Just enter code CHEATY, and have fun!

LOVE!

xo Haley-O


This post should probably be FIVE posts and not one (edit: two). But, if I don’t do this now, get it all out NOW, it might get away, and I might never write it. So it has to be done. All of it — even though eyes are still half shut from all the drinking, dancing (oh yeeeahhh), late nights and CONSTANT schmoozing (I HAVE NEVER). When I went to the grocery store today, I checked EVERYONE out and wondered…”DO I KNOW YOU?” Because that’s what you do the WHOLE time at BlogHer. You are constantly asking, “Do I know her?” “Is that? NOOO. YES! Better go say hi! Or, not.” It can make you a little insane. Total culture shock. Anyway, onward!

I ARRIVED…. Chicago is a GORJ city. Much like Toronto — only, they have peeps who, like, take your garbage to the DUMP! TO THINK! Gah.

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I felt really out of place when I got there the first day. I DID hide in my room for a bit because the whole thing was so overwhelming. But, then I changed out of my yoga pants, put on my HOT PANTS and gladiator heels, and I was good to go with head held high. Note: I wore my yoga pants and running shoes the ENTIRE rest of the time.

Believe it or not, I hung out with SO many Toronto peeps!

Like, Ms. Emma Willer — because, you know, Where there’s a WILLER, there’s…A WAY — hung out a lot. Here we are experimenting with our self-portraits at lunch. CHIN UP?

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OR, CHIN DOWN? We can’t decide which is more flattering….

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OR, the torso shot at the Saturday-night cocktail party by the waterssss. GORJ…. (This post does not adhere to chronological order because I’ve come to terms with the sorry fact that I’m a tragically circular thinker. I just don’t DO linear — in case you haven’t noticed BLAH BLAH, omg, THE TANGENTS.)

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I just love me some down-to-earth peeps! Speaking of which…. Some KARENMEG!

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And some sweet lovely CARING-for-my-overwhelmed-soul KATIE MOTHERBUMPER!

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Ma girl MANDY GRATTON! (We took this pic ourselves.)

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And, the DON MILLS DIVA Kelly Graham-Scherer IN THE FLESH — who, by the way, made one fine KEYNOTE. Go girl! PLAYDATE (I’m holding you to it!)

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And, of course, the woman who got me blogging in the first place, Ms. AliMartell — my old friend and co-worker at that big ole red publishing company….

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Yes, it seems you have to go to CHICAGO to hang with your Canadian peeps (even though Ms. Martell is moving to Atlanta AS WE SPEAK!).

I met SO many awesome non-Canadian’s, too, of course! A highlight for me was meeting one of the first bloggers I ever loved. AMALAH! If only…to have…that ARM! She’s GORJ! And SWEET! Loooove!

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AND, she probably thought I was stalking her at the Mamapop panel…. But, no. I just smile A LOT. Am COMPULSIVE smiler. But, I DID get a pic of another fave peep of mine, Jodifur, and Amalah’s little boy EZRA! OY!

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(Jodifur doesn’t like this pic. And she DOTH look GORJER in real life than in this pic — but OY. EZRA. Had to share.)

And, the one-and-only 6-months-preggers fabtastic writer and person MEGAN JORDAN. LOVE! Love love. Really. I loved hanging with her, and…

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and…, AND…. I loved GOING ON AND ON AND ON to her (and to the amazing adorable NEILOCHKA) about — WAIT FOR IT! — TIM GUNN (look at my sidebar posted WAY before BLOGHER! BIGTIME CELEBRITY LOVE)!

I met him. I met Tim Gunn at BlogHer. “We need to stick together,” he tells me….

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To be continued….

Make it work!

xo Haley-O

P.S.: For the full photo debrief, check my flickr #blogher09 stream! Enjoy!

P.P.S.: It’s The MONKEY’S 4th Birthday today! FOURTH!!! Happy Birthday, Monkey! I love you….


EVERYONE keeps telling me to take it easy. I pressure myself WAY too much: must be better mommy, must be better yoga instructor, must write perfect blog post(s) every day, must keep house clean, must be better better BETTER, must EAT RIGHT, must LOSE PREGNANCY WEIGHT, must wax eyebrows, must shower, must brush teeth, pee….

Being THAT hard on yourself can be seriously exhausting. I should have known walking into this motherhood thing that it would be haaaaard like this. I mean, anything’s easier than the internal HELL I went through in my pregnancies. That was supposed to prepare me for this! But, really, nothing can prepare you for this.

Nothing can prepare you for the anxiety, the pressure, the guilt, the sleeplessness (which ultimately exacerbates ALL of it), the exhaustion, the constant go…go…go…. But, also, nothing can prepare you for the happiness, the PHYSICAL sensation of loving a child — the way your heart ACTUALLY swells with the love to the point at which you DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH YOURSELF or HOW TO KEEP YOUR HEART FROM EXPLODING OUT OF CHEST! You know that feeling?

It’s all so overwhelming, so self-consuming….

And, I have to make a change. Must stop consuming self. Because I can honestly, FINALLY, admit to myself and to YOU THE PEOPLE — especially after watching a FAB episode of Tim Gunn’s Guide to Style last night — that, ahem, {pause} {pause} I’ve let myself go.

I HAVE LET MYSELF GO!

You see, I can write all I want about the gym and yoga and my dieting. But, you’re not with me when I gulp down that SECOND chai-tea latte of the day. You’re not with me when I eat that one bite of the Monkey’s lunch, and then another, and another, …and another. You’re not there with me when I leave the house on my dusk walk in, yes (and SHUT IT), crocsandsocksPURPLEsocks. You’re not there when I fall into bed at the end of the night without — eek — putting on my MOISTURIZER! You, erm, haven’t seen the state of my underwear drawer, or my nails…. And, you’re not there when I leave the house in black Lululemons and hoodie COVERED in CAT HAIR!


Oh, but they’re worth it!

I HAVE LET MYSELF GO!

Realizing that I’ve let myself go is the first step toward doing something about it, though, right Gorgeouses?! Yes. And, SOMETHING ABOUT IT, I MUST DO!

But, as Tim’s show revealed (I LOVE YOU, TIM!), putting yourself back together after letting yourself go is SO DANG HARD. And, see, it’s not a laughing matter….


Caaaaaall me, Tim!!! MAKE ME OVAH! And, while we’re at it, have dinner with me!

So! As of tomorrow (Wednesday), I’m picking myself back up. There’s NO reason why I shouldn’t look as good as I did before I got pregnant. I mean, there’s no need for me to be a size 0 (i.e., ZERO), but size 2-4 would be nice…. And, gosh dangit, I NEED a haircut! Did you see how long and unruly it looked in the Goodie VLOG?

But, one thing at a time. I have enough pressure in my life. I just know I’ll feel a lot better if I pick myself up again and start putting myself first now and then. After all, won’t Mama be a better role model if she takes care of herself? Won’t EVERYONE be happier if Mama feels better about herself?

It all starts tomorrow, Gorgeouses. I met with Lori (Cheaty’s resident Nutritionist) today, and the diet’s getting SERIOUS now. So much so, that I went out and bought myself a BINDER….

This is the beginning, Gorgeouses. And, it’s the answer. The better I feel about myself, the better EVERYTHING will be….

GOAL: BY THE TIME I’M 34 (September 10), I WILL BE HAWT, SEXAY, WELL-DRESSED MILF.

Now, Law of Attraction, DO YOUR THANG!

So, how ’bout you, Gorgeouses? Talk to me. Have you ever let yourself go? How did you/will you put yourself back together?

Wish me luck! And, keep an eye on Cheaty Kitchen for more diet deets, shopping lists (oooo, exciting!), and more!


I don’t really have a list of famous people I’d like to go to dinner with. If I did have a list, I’m sure Clive Owen would top it (I hear he’s pretty down-to-earth in person). And, if we did actually end up going to dinner (ever?), I wouldn’t speak; I’d just listen to that sultry voice and stare into those sexay eyes….

Ahem, I’m back.

Sorry.

As I was TRYING to say. I think I’d really like to go to dinner with Tim….

Tim Gunn…. LOVE HIM! I’m just watching him on the third episode of Project Runway 4 (yeah, the show started in January for us Canadians — so NO SPOILERS, please!), and I love him. And, I want to go to dinner with him….

If you LOVE me, you’ll buy me this because, as the monkey ALWAYS says, I WAAAAAAAAN IT:

I wonder if Sanjaya has one….

If I got the chance to have dinner with Tim, we’d have SO much to talk about…like, what not to wear…!

No doubt, my closet would make a wonderful episode in his new show Guide to Style (cannot waiiiit!)….

We could also talk about Heidi…Seal…sexual orientation and who does the better one-eyebrow lift….

Awwwesome.

Here’s looking at you, kid….

Now, GO CHECK ZEE GOSSIP!