Julie Solomon’s contagious smile is the first sign of her warmth and openness. It’s no surprise that her approachability has helped her become a public relations pro and top Hollywood publicist. When I discovered that this Southern-girl-turned-L.A.-Mom is also a blogger, I began following her right away and related to so much she shared…she’s the mom of a toddler boy, she had a natural childbirth, and she breastfed. No wonder her successful site, JulieSolomon.net, resonates with so many mothers like me. She’s the girl next door who just happens to walk the red carpet!
The Nashville native now lives in Los Angeles and is married to actor Johnathon Schaech, who has appeared in That Thing You Do, Blue Bloods, and Legends of Tomorrow. With a background in book publicity and public relations, Solomon has managed to incorporate her passions and talents into her new family life. She blogs on her website (and for People.com) about motherhood, lifestyle, and fashion, while still running her own PR agency, OMG Publicity. But her proudest accomplishment is clearly her role as Mom to two-year-old son Camden. Her life is busy, colorful, and based in a town known more for reality TV than reality! So how does this celebrity mom keep her family so real? I had the pleasure of interviewing Julie and loved the sincerity and wisdom of her responses. Here’s how Julie makes sure her family focuses on faith, fun, and all things fabulous.
LARA: Your background is in book publicity, but you also have a successful blog. Tell me a little about how your blog came to be.
JULIE: I started my blog after I had my son as a way to connect to the community of mothers that I wasn’t yet a part of! I have met so many inspiring women through blogging, and love being a part of the blogger world!
LARA: A lot of your blog is about motherhood. I understand you had Camden naturally. Tell me about that experience and what advice you have for women who want to plan for a natural childbirth.
JULIE: Yes! I was the crazy lady who chose to have her son naturally! I don’t think it is crazy at all actually, it was intense to say the least, but a great birthing experience. I was told that if I wanted to go natural I would need to stay home as long as possible (I gave birth in a hospital) in order for the “transition” to happen. Which I did. Once I got to the hospital I was 10 +2 centimeters dilated, so there was no turning back. My advice would be to BELIEVE you can do it, know you are capable, and to stay at home as long as you can! Trust me…your body will let you know when it’s time to go to the hospital!
LARA: I respect you so much for blogging about your struggle with baby blues after Camden’s birth, because your experience can really reassure and encourage other new moms. What do you think helped you most to overcome this?
JULIE: Thank you! Honestly, starting my blog and finding that community of mothers really helped. I was also a part of some awesome Mommy and Me classes that I would recommend to anyone. And just time…. it takes time to get over those blues….I also went to The Mother’s Love and got great tips there. Rebecca Egbert is pretty amazing!
LARA: What advice would you give to husbands and family members of women facing all the emotional highs and lows of new motherhood?
JULIE: Patience and understanding, which is a lot easier said than done. It’s a process, and I think trying to be as open, mindful and communicative about that as possible is the best action to take.
LARA: You juggle a lot as a publicist, blogger, and of course wife and mother. Are there days when something has to give? How do you handle that?
JULIE: Honestly, I have a part-time nanny, and she helps alleviate the load and is wonderful. We live 2,000 miles away from the majority of our family. So with my husband and I both having full-time careers, we need the help when we can’t be all hands on deck! Three days a week, I have a part-time nanny. She has been with my family since my son was 12 weeks old. She is an amazing woman and is so essential to me and my husband being able to do what we do. Plus, she is a wonderful gift to my son’s life as well. It may cost more than daycare, but for our family it’s worth it because my son loves her. On Wednesdays, it’s mommy and me day. I know I am not going to have him (Camden) home forever, so while he is 2 years old I keep Wednesdays as our day. I get my work done in the morning while my husband takes on daddy duty, then we switch it up and I have him the entire afternoon. We go to the park, to museums…we just explore the city (LA) in some way. Then one day a week he goes to a pre-school. If we need any help at night, either one of us will stay home with our son, or we will get a babysitter. Again…all about the balance! It takes a village to raise a child, but since our village is on the other side of the country, we sometimes have to hire our village!
LARA: Even with your busy schedule and a toddler to chase around, you always look so stylish and put together! How do you make time for yourself?
JULIE: I don’t as much as it may look! (laughing) Camden is usually always with me when I am getting ready in the bathroom. I don’t think I have had a moment to myself in the bathroom in over a year! I’ll usually put some music on or have toys on the floor and he just hangs with me while I get ready. If it’s “real” time for myself, I have to physically go somewhere else so I have no interruptions. I try to schedule in “me time” just as a would any work-related meeting. I have a set gym schedule that is “me time” and I treat that as I would any other meeting. That is the only way it becomes a priority.
LARA: Your husband also has a successful career as an actor. How do you two work together to balance both careers and be there for Camden and each other?
JULIE: I think the key to balance is just taking it day by day, moment by moment. Balance is one of the biggest challenges in any full-time PR business woman’s life…add a family in the mix and it can feel as if you are losing your mind some days (I feel like I’m losing my mind most days). But I’ve realized that I actually work better if I take a moment each day to just break away from the computer and phone. I’ll step away from my desk and either take a 5 minute walk, run an errand, or give my dog some love. Whatever it is, I have found that taking a mid-day break to just regroup and check in on myself and my family is essential in my success, and helps my balance and keeps what truly matters in check.
LARA: You and Johnathon both seem really grounded. What’s your secret to keeping your family real in Hollywood?
JULIE: I have to give my husband props for this one. He has been in this business for over 25 years and has a keen understanding on how this world works. He’s great at keeping our family on track and is the rock. I tend to be a social butterfly so he always brings me back around. It’s always important for me to remember that in 20 years, I won’t be looking back saying, “Oh I should have gone to that event or to that meeting!” but I will probably say, “I wish I would have spent as much time with my 2 year old as I could have,” because he will never be this age again. Most importantly, we keep God first and we pray together, which keeps it very real.
Photos Courtesy JulieSolomon.net