Alyson Hannigan and her husband Alexis Denisof recently became first-time parents in March when they welcomed their daughter Satyana (on Alyson’s 35th birthday nonetheless!).
The new mom is back to work on her popular TV show, How I Met Your Mother. In the interview below, Alyson opens up about motherhood – “the best thing in the world” – and shares some great tips with our readers on how to manage a fully-loaded life. Read below to find out how motherhood has changed one of our favorite celeb moms and see if she shares in your guilty pleasures.
Is motherhood everything you thought it would be?
“Motherhood is more than I could’ve hoped for. Every cliché in the book is true!” At this point we heard little Satyana making some noises and Alyson said that she needed a nap. She adds that motherhood is, “just the best thing in the world and I could not be happier.”
Now that you’re back to work and being a mom at the same time, do you have a new-found respect for women who can juggle it all?
“Omigosh I have the utmost respect for all parents, particularly single moms. My mom was a single mom and, oh, just how she did it, I’ll never know!” She jokes, “I was a really good baby though so I helped.” On a serious note again, Alyson adds, “But yah, my husband is a full-on dad and he and I both are just like ‘ah’ it’s a lot to do. But we love it, and we’re still the new parents trying to adjust to it all.”
Click below to read Alyson’s best household tips….
When you think of your busy day, what kind of chores and tasks tie you up?
“My fully loaded life is everything from trying to manage the feeding schedule and the napping schedule, with making business calls and reading scripts, and taking care of the dogs – who are now very neglected.” At this point Alyson apologized to the dogs and the “kitty.” She continues, “There’s a lot of juggling going on. There are so many things that come with babies. You know – the baby parts.” At which point she jokes, “You know, not actual baby parts, but the bottles, the pumps, and you’re constantly cleaning and looking for that one part that didn’t get clean. It’s just a juggling act, but it’s fantastic. It can be a little confusing, but I’m getting there.”
Do you cook?
“I cook all the time!” Alyson proclaims with a smile on her face but then says, “No my husband cooks.” She adds, “I do cook, it’s just what I can eat now is basically very limited because the baby doesn’t like me to eat garlic, doesn’t like me to eat onions, doesn’t like me to eat dairy…basically any of the stuff that tastes really good, she doesn’t want me to eat. So it’s a very bland diet in my house. My husband is very sweet and very creative and he tries to make bland food taste better. So he does the majority of the cooking and I’m very, very lucky,” she says proudly with a smile on her face.
Does it feel good being back to work on the set of HIMYM?
“Oh it’s so nice to be back at work and we really are one big family and it’s just fabulous because I get to bring the baby to work and everybody’s so excited to meet her and to hang out with her. It’s just such a blessing to be able to take her to work so that I don’t have to leave her all day. It’s also hard being back to work because I still have to be a mommy. If we go 2 hours and we haven’t had a break I have to go ‘ah guys, I need to go and feed my baby.’ But they’re so wonderful and so understanding and I’m so blessed that I’m working in that kind of an environment.”
Any guilty TV shows or books that you enjoy when you get a moment for yourself?
“My guilty pleasure is more television-based rather than books because the last time I read a book….I don’t even remember the last book I read that wasn’t baby-related. Right now my reading is What to Expect During the First Year, so books are all just baby-related. But with television, I’m very into the cooking shows right now. The Top Chef’s and that kind of stuff. It’s probably just because I remember when I could eat tasty food and say ‘oh look, they’re using onions, that looks delicious,’ she jokes, “I have onion envy.”
Alyson has recently teamed up with Cascade to film a tongue-in-cheek PSA about her fully-loaded life as a mom and actress. The 35-year-old new mom also shared some of her best tips for our readers. Do any of these hot tips relate to you?
1. I keep all of my main cleaning supplies in a bucket under my kitchen sink, with an additional supply bucket in the upstairs bathroom. The bucket acts as an easy-to-carry caddy I can take from room to room with me, and having one on each floor saves time.
2. I keep a calendar with all of my appointments and commitments, whether they are work related or personal. This helps me to avoid schedule conflicts and keeps the importance of my family life on par with my work life.
3. Since mornings are hectic in my house, I often organize myself the night before (laying out clothes, packing lunches) so I can leave on time the next day. Planning ahead allows me to spend more time with my family before leaving for work.
4. I keep a laundry basket for every person, and separate the clean load out for each to fold and put away their own things.
5. My closet can get a bit crazy at home—to save time, I keep all my shoes in shoeboxes with a Polaroid of each taped to the outside. This way I can quickly and easily locate the pair of shoes I’m looking for and get out the door on time.
6. To save time and energy, my husband and I only run the dishwasher when it’s all the way full. Cascade ActionPacs are no fuss—we toss the little packet into the dishwasher dispenser and our dishes come out clean the first time, every time.
7. With a new baby, free time is hard to come by, so multitasking is key. As I talk, I dust my furniture. You can also tuck a second cloth sprayed with window cleaner into your back pocket. That way, as you’re dusting your cabinets, you can take care of those small fingerprints on the glass doors at the same time.
8. I combine my daughter’s diaper bag with my gym bag, which not only allows me to hit the gym at a moment’s notice, but also reduces the amount of baggage I carry with me
9. Every week I put the grocery store receipt on the fridge so I can remember what items I buy from week to week. This helps to eliminate an overstuffed freezer or pantry because I’m not re-buying items I forgot I had.
10. I keep 3-4 trash bags in the garbage can at once, that way when one is taken out there is a refill ready to replace it.
11. I keep a shoe rack on the back of my passenger seat in my car with extra pairs of heels, running shoes, as well as socks and shoes for my daughter in case an impromptu meeting or change in weather occurs—then I don’t have to run home between trips!