Mommie Brain

Sleep deprivation is just a part of being a good parent

I have been sleeping a lot. Being pregnant, it is part of the deal. My main symptom in my pregnancies has never been morning sickness, but extreme fatigue. And so, I sleep. My husband gets up with our 3-year-old son so I can sleep in. He takes him to the park so I can nap. He’s a doll. But in addition to actually sleeping, I have been... Read more →


Family fun crafts on the cheap

Several stores around town offer free craft sessions for kids in hopes that parents will do a little shopping. We hammered, glued, and glittered so we could report on the activities, and picked up some light bulbs and magnetic letters at the same time. Home Depot ( offers a new wooden craft project the first Saturday of the... Read more →


A kernel of knowledge goes a long way during season

During a recent trip to the Santa Monica Farmers’ Market, I was flabbergasted when I cheerfully walked up to my favorite carrot purveyor, Weiser Family Farms, only to be told that, “Carrots are out of season.” Really? I truly had no idea. I don’t buy carrots every week, but I honestly don’t recall there being a... Read more →


The invention of Jerzy

In 1965, Polish-Jewish novelist Jerzy Kosinski wrote “The Painted Bird,” a novel widely seen as an autobiography of his own tragic experiences during the Holocaust. Except, it was later learned, none of the dates corresponded with the reports of his countrymen who had known him as a boy. Besieged by charges of having created... Read more →


Thin is in

Let’s face it … in Santa Monica you have to be thin to attract a good-looking guy. And we’re not just talking “thin,” but “in-shape thin.” That means no flabby arms, no sagging butt and no cellulite — anywhere. All this of course, should be coupled with great muscle tone, evenly tanned skin and... Read more →


Book smarts may not translate into dating IQ

Dear New Shrink, Why are so many smart women so dumb when it comes to men? I have a friend who is smart and successful and I think most people would agree, is also beautiful. But unfortunately, she seems out of touch when it comes to men. She doesn’t seem to be able to discern sincerity from bologna. And she seems to get hopeful when... Read more →


Renaissance man ready to unveil film

MONTANA AVE — The Santa Monica High School baseball team’s season may be over, but senior first baseman Ethan Corn still has some performing left to do. This time, however, he won’t be fielding groundballs or tagging out opposing runners. Instead, Corn will look on as “Barnabus & Bella” — a... Read more →

Book Review

‘Plan B’

Things aren’t going as you planned. You are down. “Often in life the what, when, and where are not going to turn out the way you want them to turn out. You don’t always get to choose those things, but you do get to choose the way” When this happens we blame God, if we believe. Or if we don’t believe, we take... Read more →


Work experience comes in many forms

Dear New Shrink, I am a recent college graduate and have come to realize that most positions require experience. Seeing this in the job description has stopped me from applying to several positions that I feel I am qualified for. How do you get experience if they require experience just to get the job? Perhaps I am missing something but this... Read more →

Mommie Brain

Fostering a strong work ethic

I am sitting in a bustling Coffee Bean in Montecito, Calif. My husband, son, mother-in-law and step father-in-law have all gone exploring Santa Barbara. But I am here alone, writing. And I love it. I have never been able to write where it is quiet. I need sound and other people’s energy. Perhaps it is a by-product of the school I went... Read more →


Ephrons’ collaboration more than just for the ladies

Five women sit in a row onstage and talk about being women. Their subjects range from buying a bra to their obsession with boots to the enduring chic of the color black. They talk about marriage and divorce and the death of a child. And most of all, they talk about their mothers. It’s a hilarious, poignant, and passionate exposition of... Read more →


Wiping away the fat

“I like to think of it like a windshield wiper, wiping away the grime.” That’s the analogy my trainer Keith Sims uses to describe how I’m able to see muscle peeking through layers of fat. “We’re changing your body composition,” says Sims. “As you strengthen and condition and lose fat, the... Read more →


What to do when a friend cuts you off

Dear New Shrink, I am not sure where to start. I have (or had) this friend for the last five years or so. When we met, she had few to no friends, seemed very shy and was definitely without social skills. But something about her made me care about her. She has a good heart and a lot of class, in that she is well mannered and treats people... Read more →


A life of volunteerism

MID-CITY — Usually plaques mounted on hospital walls are reserved for those who donate lots of cash. Jette Simmons was honored with a bronze plaque at the Santa Monica-UCLA Medical Center for giving something arguably more valuable — her time. Simmons, who friends and colleagues remember as a “feisty Brit” who was... Read more →