We’ve long been fans of Ali Fedotowsky since watching her search for a soulmate in the infamous ABC juggernaut, The Bachelor. We love that she went on to find love off the show but still remains tight with the Bachelor family and will be blogging from the sidelines during this week’s premiere. Now, a mama to a gorgeous little girl Molly, (and surprise! Has another on the way!), Ali stays busy as a tv host and correspondent and a blogger for her site, Ali Luvs. We were fortunate enough to meet Ali, her hubby Kevin and their adorable daughter recently in New York City and she was as real and adorable in real life as she was on the show. Read on to find out what Ali has learned from her fans, why she’s not sorry she left her career at Facebook behind and what she’s most excited (and nervous!) about with baby #2.
Congrats on becoming a mama and all of the success you’ve been having with your career! Tell us a little bit about what you’re working on.
Thank you! I have three main jobs right now. The first being my job as a mother to my daughter Molly. It’s by far my most challenging job but my favorite one too! Both my husband and I work and we don’t have a nanny or grandparents around to babysit so it’s quite the juggling trick.
I also run my blog Ali Luvs. The blog is a passion project of mine and it’s 100% run and written by me. The main focus of my blog is fashion and motherhood! And of course, every Bachelor and Bachelorette season I blog about the show! I love to showcase my passion for affordable and budget friendly fashion so I’m constantly sharing my daily looks with my followers. And I am so grateful for the community of mothers that I have on Ali Luvs. I try to offer my own advice from my short time as a mother, and I certainly ask for and appreciate all of the mothers who share their own advice in the comments on my blog! I love seeing mothers helping other mothers! And daddies are welcome too!
And last but not least, I am a family member on the Hallmark Channel show, Home & Family. It’s such a wonderful show where we do everything from cooking, DIY arts & crafts and interviews with super interesting people! I feel so lucky to be a small part of the show. We truly are like one big family over there!
You’ve also recently announced that you are expecting your second baby – congrats! What are you looking forward to most with this new addition? Anything you are nervous about?
Thank you! We feel pretty lucky. We always wanted two kids, two years apart and our little ones will be 23 months apart! We’re just so grateful for that. We’re most looking forward to our daughter Molly having a sibling. She loves being around other people and really loves interacting with other kiddos, so I’m hoping that they will be best friends! I think the infant stage will be tough to get through since Molly will want all of mommy’s attention, but I’m sure we will figure it all out. We aren’t the first ones to do this after all!
I’m definitely most nervous about managing life with two kids! I already feel like I’m barely keeping my head above water with everything I’m doing right now and I am pretty terrified of what will happen once #2 arrives. If I constantly feel stressed and overwhelmed now, what’s going to happen when I have another BABY?!?! I panic at times thinking about it. But again, I know we will not only get through it, but I know it will be some of the best days of our lives!
We love that you famously left a career at Facebook to follow your heart and have a chance at finding love on The Bachelor. What are your thoughts on that move today? Would you do it any differently?
Honestly no. After I left Facebook, I missed it for a really long time! And I even miss it sometimes now too. But I have the absolute best life now and it wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t left Facebook to follow my heart on Bachelor/ette.
You’ve been extremely candid and honest about what you’ve been through in regards to your birth experience and first year of motherhood. What support did you seek and what advice would you give to mamas who may be going through a similar experience?
My advice to anyone going through the first year of motherhood would be to ask for help when you need it. I didn’t ask for help for a really long time in the beginning of Molly‘s life and it ultimately led to me having a nervous breakdown. I remember crawling up into a ball on my kitchen floor and just crying while she cried because I felt so completely overwhelmed. Since then, I’ve learned to ask for help when I need it. If my husband is at work and I’m having a particularly stressful day, I’ll tell him and he’ll find a way to come home. Or he’ll call a friend to come help me with Molly so I can get a break. If you ask for help, people are usually willing to give it.
Women are often told, “You can have it all, just not all at the same time.” What are your thoughts on this sentiment as it pertains to women juggling work and family?
I have to say I completely agree with it. I think it’s impossible to have it all, all at once! That is, unless you have a team of people helping you. But I’m sure even those people don’t really have it all. For me personally, I found that when I’m being the best mom I can be for Molly, my work suffers. And then when I’m doing really well with my work and career, I’m not as great of a mom. I’m not as present and patient. And with that, I’ve learned recently that I’m just not going to have balance in my life for a little while. But what I do try to do is remind myself constantly that my time with Molly as a toddler is by far more important than any other job I have. Yes, we have to pay the bills. But beyond that I just want Molly to have good memories of me and of our time together.
The blog is a passion project of mine and it’s 100% run and written by me.
You and your family are in the public eye. Do you ever feel pressure to be a “perfect” mom because so many women look up to you for tips and advice? How do you deal with that?
Yes and no. I definitely think twice before I post a picture of Molly to make sure she’s not doing anything she’s not supposed be doing. But I honestly think coming off as a perfect mom is actually looked down upon more than being real. I think being a real mom is the new normal. I found that on my blog people don’t want to hear about how I have it all together. They want to hear about how I don’t have it all together and how they’re not alone. So I actually think that people don’t want to see “perfect”.
We love how real and grounded you are! How do you manage that while living amongst the craziness of Hollywood?
I live in the Valley, which is basically considered the “wrong side of the tracks” in LA. Ha! Well, I guess that depends on who you ask. But even though it’s just a few miles from Hollywood, it feels like it’s a world away! I don’t go to many events. When I’m invited to one, I feel grateful to be invited, but then usually politely decline because they tend to start around 8:00pm and I’m in bed by then. Not even kidding. But in general, my life really isn’t Hollywood in any sort of way.
Are there things that you won’t share or rules that you try to enforce to keep work and life separate or do you welcome the overlap between the two?
I totally overlap the two! Heck, I used to work at Facebook! The whole mission statement at Facebook is making the world more open and connected. I’ve always been an over-sharer in general. My friends used to always joke with me that when they would wake up on a Sunday morning after going out with me on Saturday night they would wake up to a notification on Facebook saying “Ali Fedotowsky has shared 387 photos of you” Ha! So even before I started doing stuff on TV, I was always very open with my life. So Molly often comes on Home & Family with me. She’s quite often the main topic of many of my blog posts. And I share tons of photos of her on my blog! I’ve just never really been a private person.
Not only are you a new mama, you recently got married! How do you make time for your partner? Do you have a standing weekly date night or have any rituals to stay connected?
Weekly date? Ummm try like yearly date! Sadly, Kevin and I don’t get out for date nights nearly as often as we should. Since Molly was born 16 months ago, I think we’ve gone out on four date nights. Which we both know is totally unhealthy! Luckily, we have a very solid relationship right now. But we also realize that over time, it’s going to be more and more important for us to reconnect over the years.
Where do you see your career going next? What is one dream you have that you have yet to accomplish?
My ultimate dream would be doing some sort of panel talk show that empowers women. Tyra Banks used to have a talk show that I absolutely loved. So many segments were about women helping women and women’s issues such as body shaming and harassment. I loved it so much and was so sad when it went off the air! After that I thought, “hey I could do that one day”! I just really want to help and empower other women.
Can you remember any break down moments when family and career collided in a major way. How did you deal with the crisis?
Basically that happens on a daily basis for me. Maybe not a major crisis, but many small breakdowns and frustrations. I’m constantly finding myself struggling between taking care of Molly and trying to answer emails. Molly is at an age where if I even pick up my phone she starts crying because she wants my attention or she wants to play with it, or if I’m trying to use it to talk text to write an email she’ll start screaming so I can’t do it. It’s the strangest thing and makes me super frustrated sometimes. But I just have to take a deep breath and figure it out. Many days I have to wait for Kevin to get home from work so I can answer my emails. Or sometimes I pick up the phone and call a friend to come over and watch her so I can get something done. But it’s honestly a daily struggle for me.
How do you stay sane with the juggle? What is your way of coping when you find yourself frustrated, overwhelmed or burned out? How do you treat yourself?
It depends. Sometimes I don’t feel like I am staying sane. Ha! But to help myself relax sometimes I’ll take a nap, sometimes I’ll go for a long walk, or sometimes I just leave the house and run an errand so I can have some alone time.
You love fashion and regularly put together budget-conscious looks on your site. What 3 things are you coveting this Fall?
Yes! I absolutely love blogging about affordable fashion on my blog, Ali Luvs. I started it because I realized that every fashion blogger that I followed would post cute outfits, but then when I went to click on them, they were way over my budget. So, I wanted to create a space where woman could go to find clothes that they can actually afford. This Fall, I’m absolutely loving over the knee boots, plaid scarves, and striped shirts! Really I love those three things every Fall.
Know it’s ok if you can’t do it all on your own. Ask for help! Because your health will suffer - physically and emotionally.
Keep snacks (almonds for me!) in your car. I get hangry and I’m constantly running around and forgetting to eat because I’m juggling a millions things at once. When you're starving, your patience is running thin, and your little one is screaming in the back seat, you’ll think those almonds are the best thing in your life and will save your sanity.
Try not to compare yourself to other moms (I need to take my own advice!). No mother is perfect. I’m certainly not. But sometimes we get stuck in this cycle where we compare ourselves to others especially when scrolling through social media. Know everyone is just showing the best side of themselves in their photos, and hopefully once in awhile, you’ll stumble upon a cool site like heymama (and my blog hopefully!) that helps you realize that we’re all in the same boat and we’re all just trying to get by.