Beautiful You


The last time I felt truly beautiful, I was nearly 9 months pregnant. Where my body loves to cling to the carbs I crave, instead a baby snuggled in the space of my belly. I felt so lovely that I never really noticed I’d developed a mild melasma, the mask of pregnancy, until I was a few days postpartum. I love remembering that sense of balancing between beauty and strength in my body. I’m searching for ways to get back to feeling that beautiful—without having to actually be 9 months pregnant again! Ah, body image. Such a raw topic for so many of us. So easy to come at it from the down … [Read more...]

What I Won’t Say

What I Won't Say

I have to admit, I took the bait. Sitting in a wise woman’s circle this past weekend, we were offered a writing prompt: “what I won’t tell you.” I had so much to say. I wrote so hard, so intensely, so many of the scary things that I could never, ever tell you, or anyone. I wrote so hard my hand cramped. Then my heart cramped. And my eyes crimped. And—mamas, you know what came next—the tears were a-flowin’. Hurt, heartbreak, loss, regret. From the oh-so-shallow to the deep-dark-and-subtle, raw emotions and memories spilled and scrawled across the page. It was a little cathartic … and then … [Read more...]

In Search of Sweeter Dreams


Four years into parenting, you’d think I’d have a handle on putting my two littles to bed. But not tonight. Tonight, I was a crummy mommy. And of course, it’s not the first time I’ve struggled like this, so it’s sort of embarrassing to admit what a terrific failure of parenting took place. Tantrum and tears, yelling and sulking. And, please, let’s not say who did what! Thankfully, in the midst of getting it mostly wrong, I hung on to a couple of moments that glimmered with the soft, promising light of grace. Once, I remembered to breathe, and to start over. The yoga teacher in … [Read more...]

Kara Douglass Thom

Kara Thom

Kara Douglass Thom, author of Belly Button Bliss birth story “I Can’t Do This! I CAN Do This!” is a triathlon-loving mom of four who hopes her affinity for fitness rubs off on her children, 7-year-old twin daughters, a 5-year-old daughter, and a 19-month-old son. The author of Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom (Andrews McMeel, 2011), Kara writes about finding fitness in the chaos of motherhood and raising a fit family. Her work has appeared in magazines, newspapers, and at her blog, Mama Sweat. Kara, 41, has also authored a children’s book, See Mom Run (Breakaway Books … [Read more...]

Bridget Foley


Bridget Foley, author of the Belly Button Bliss birth story Sacred Ceremony,  is a writer, yoga teacher, energetic healer, and doula/birth coach. Trained in Forrest Yoga in 2001, Bridget strives to provide a sanctuary for students to go inside and explore the emotional landscape of their life experiences through breath and movement in yoga ceremony, or practice. Her writing has appeared in Conde Nast Women’s Sports and Fitness, YogaChicago, and The Essential Chicago. She is the author of a memoir, Necessary Utterances, a novel, Undertow, and is at work on her second novel, Channeling Audrey. … [Read more...]