As a co-host of TV Guide Network's Hollywood Girls Night, Miss USA-turned-actress Ali Landry knows the importance of gathering gal pals together to share advice and anecdotes about motherhood, marriage, career, and life. Here, this stunning mother to Estela Ines, born July 2007, and Marcelo Alejandro, born October 2011, dishes about her mommy must-haves and parenting philosophies.
What's your golden rule of parenting?
I try to really speak to my daughter instead of speaking at her. I try to get down on her level, look her in the eyes, explain everything to her, explain a situation. Trust me, I'm just trying to figure it out like everybody else, but it really worked and I never experienced a tantrum with her. I think it's maybe because of that. So I'll try the same with him (Marcelo) and it might be totally different. I might be wrong, but it has worked so far.
Describe the best moment of parenting so far.
Nowadays, my daughter is very into drawing. When she draws a picture she puts it in an envelope and says, "This is for you, Mommy. I worked so hard on it." So that's a really sweet moment—to know she's thought about me in her day.
And the worst?
The hardest I would say is really figuring out the balance. How do you give enough time to your husband, to your work and to your children where someone isn't falling short at the end of the day? I still haven't figured that one out.
Best advice you ever got?
I think the best advice I've been given was when I just had Estela. I felt like now the baby's out and I have to get back to my life, I have to answer emails, I have to get back to work. I no longer have the excuse I'm pregnant. Someone told me, all you need to do is sit yourself in that glider, nurse that baby and that's your main priority right now. Everybody understands. Don't worry about anybody or anything else. Just focus on the baby. I felt like a weight started to lift off of my shoulders. I can really just be in the moment and enjoy my baby.
What's the one thing you can't live without?
That's really tough for me because I'm a product mommy. I'm obsessed with products in the baby and child space. Each week as the children grow it's something different so that's a really hard one. In the beginning I would say it was my Happiest Baby on the Block DVD. Dr. Harvey Karp is a dear friend now—thank goodness! So that was one of my must, must, must-haves. Now I make Marcelo's baby food so I really like Sage Spoonfuls. I really love her cookbook that tells you which foods are appropriate for what month. That's really my go-to book. She really encouraged me to make my own baby food and for me that seemed overwhelming but I found I really enjoy the process. It's very therapeutic.
Finish this sentence: You know you're in the Baby Zone when...
… you're out in public and you don't mind having vomit or spit up on you—or dried up, smelly milk.