My 2018 To Do List

Every year, I pretty much do the same thing. I make a list of what I want to accomplish and then I either start tackling a few things and then pretty much abandon ship after about a month or two. Well now that 2018 is around the corner, I’m back again and ready to dig into that list. Here’s hoping I stick to at least 50% of these resolutions!

  1. Lose Weight – I’ve already posted ad nauseum about my desire to lose weight and this time I am super serious. I feel bloated, my clothes don’t fit right and no matter how much I do my Peloton, nothing seems to be budging. Time to shake things up and started shedding some serious poundage. Up eight pounds from 2017 so hoping to be down 28 lbs. by the end of 2018.
  2. Should I Stay or Should I Go? – I still don’t know where my future is headed. Stick with being a small business owner or head back to a full time job? That is the career question for 2018. I’m definitely keeping my options open this year and am dedicated to pursuing projects that I truly believe in.
  3. Teach Myself to Cook Healthy Foods: I’ve already been doing that but I’ve stepped up my game several notches these last few weeks by using my Instant Pot several times a day to whip up soups, oatmeal, spaghetti squash, meatloaf, steamed veggies, hard boiled eggs and much much more! No more shakes, bars, or prepared meals for me. I’m going to cook myself thin!!!!
  4. Sing again: I don’t want to reserve this just for the shower. I really want to join a group again where I can perform in front of people. I miss that part of my life so much and definitely need to go back to it this year.
  5. The Role Mommy Retreat: Since the first time I started Role Mommy I have always dreamed of hosting a retreat for entrepreneurial and creative women and haven’t followed through with it. Meanwhile, I’ve watched others spearhead retreats and conferences while I’ve been busy working on projects that were leading me nowhere. Well not anymore. My goal is to kick off one retreat per year and then workshop events in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. I’ve got captains in mind for each city so stay tuned. Destination for the retreat? Haven’t decided yet but somewhere warm with great food, places to see and lots of inspiration.
  6. Write More: I said this recently on another blog post and while I haven’t been able to post every single day on my blog, I have been getting a lot better. This year, I’m finally going to stick to an editorial calendar so I can plan out what I’m writing each week.
  7. Read More: This one should be fairly simple. I have even bought several books this year and had every intention of reading them. Except I didn’t. Rather than spend my time scrolling through my Facebook page, I’m going to devote more time to reading. It’s time to get reinvigorated by great writing!
  8. Don’t Chase Anyone: I find that quite often, I’m the friend trying to make plans with people only to find my texts and messages ignored. For those of you who will probably never read this post in the first place, I get the hint. You won’t be hearing from me again in 2018 or beyond. If you want to see me, you know where to find me. Otherwise, I’m tired of wasting energy pursuing people who obviously have no time for me.
  9. Spend Time with People I Adore: This one should be fairly easy but when your schedule gets hectic, sometimes, the people you care about wind up on the back burner and you end up not seeing them for years. This year, I’m going to make it a point to reconnect with those friends, catch up and spend quality time with people who I truly care about and I know care about me too.
  10. Help My Family Achieve Their Goals: As we head into the New Year, my husband is still working hard to build his sports business for families, my daughter is about to start her custom design sneaker business at Temple University and my son is a budding magician who needs to start booking some birthday parties stat. I promise not to be a helicopter mom or hoverer but instead, a connector who can help all of them achieve their goals by providing them with support, guidance and lots of PR.

So there you have it. My 2018 list of resolutions. I’ll make sure to check back in a year to see if I kept all or some of them. Either way, I’m ready for the New Year to start already. 2017, you have drained me and it’s time to say sayonara!!!!

Top 10 Diet Resolutions for 2018

With 2018 on the horizon, it’s time to start thinking about how we’re going to do things differently in the New Year. For me, I’ve got a long list of resolutions that I really need to adhere to in the year ahead. Truth be told, the last year has been a bit trying to say the least – both on the career front and on the diet front.

This post is going to focus on my diet.

Ever since the 2016 election, I have gained eight pounds. That’s eight pounds on top of the 20 that I had wanted to lose in the first place. While I faithfully exercised on my Peloton and have logged over 300 rides this year, that didn’t stop the pounds from creeping up on me. So how can it be? Simple. Whenever I exercise, I give myself permission to eat more. Add to that the fact I am convinced that I’m going through perimenopause and there you have it. For the first time in my life, I have boobs and a muffin top. While I have always battled big calves, a big butt and big thighs, I have managed to keep my waist trim and my bra size fluctuated between an A and a B cup. These days, it seems like I’m inching towards a C and my jeans just don’t fit the way I’d like. My legs, thankfully look better than they ever have (thanks to my Peloton) so I blame some of the weight on muscle gain which technically weighs more than fat. Okay Beth, keep telling yourself that.

Even though I worked out at least 4-5 times per week, I spent way too much time online and in front of my TV. And that sedentary behavior has lead to the weight gain too. I’m obsessed with MSNBC and can watch it for hours on end which is totally unhealthy. When I wake up in the morning, I check my emails, my Facebook feed, the New York Post app, CNN and Twitter to make sure I’m updated on everything taking place that day. Then there’s all those news alerts. By the time I turn around, I’ve been sucked into a black hole where I’m reading everything from the Washington Post, to The Hill, to Politico, The New Yorker, Elle, Teen Vogue, and on and on and on. On the bright side, I’ve never read so much in my life. But on the down side, I haven’t cracked open a real book in months and every time I watch the news, I just get more and more aggravated.

So what am I going to do differently next year so I can stop this vicious cycle, lose weight and keep it off? I’m going to take the advice of my dear friend, Toby Amidor, the author of the Healthy Meal Prep Cookbook and a leading dietician who always has great advice for me on how to lose weight and keep it off. I just need to stick to it and do it!

So here are my diet resolutions for 2018:

  1. Drink more water. No matter how much I hate water, I’ve got to suck it up (literally) and just do it. At least 64 ounces of water per day. Every time I’m feeling hungry, I’ll reach for water. This is going to be tough but I have given up Diet Coke so it can become a habit eventually.
  2. Just say “NO” to the bread basket. This is totally my weakness. Whenever we go out to a restaurant, I love the bread basket. Corn muffins or warm sourdough bread gets me every time but this year, all bets are off. I may break down once in a while, but 2018 is all about cutting out carbs so I can reduce the size of my perimenopausal muffin top.
  3. Double up on veggies. Instead of including a starch with my meal, I will continue to get creative with vegetables. My instant pot has seriously upped my cooking skills so this year, I’ll continue using that amazing product to make our dinners delicious, filling and satisfying.
  4. Eat out less.  We have started doing this already but I know that the more I cook at home and the less I eat out at restaurants, the better we will be – from a health and savings standpoint. We’ll still go out on weekends but I’m committed to cooking at least 5 days per week in the New Year.
  5. Less wine per week. On the weekends, I totally enjoy having wine with dinner. But I find that if I have more than 2 glasses, I become exhausted and completely bloated. In the New Year, I’m going to limit my wine intake to either 1 glass per weekend meal. I’m also going to cut out drinking during the week.
  6. Start dancing and weight training again. While I do love my Peloton, my friend Toby tells me that as menopause approaches, I need to burn even more calories. That means, I need to find another way to sweat and I’m either going to get a class pass to try out some Zumba in my area or I’ll download the BeachBody on Demand App and take their classes instead. I actually purchased these cool boots called Kangoo Jumps which are great for people like me who have bad knees so I may just combine a dance workout with the Kangoos and see if the pounds start falling off by mixing up my cardio routine. Toby also says that weight training is a great way to speed up your metabolism and lose weight. Even though I do weights on the Peloton, I need to add more strength training into my routine and can easily use their Beyond the Ride option to take more of those classes too.
  7. Write more. Sure writing is a sedentary exercise, but it prevents you from reaching for a cookie while you’re typing. When it comes to my blog, I always vow each year that I’m going to post more and then I just don’t. I can’t make any promises but I will definitely try. Even if it means banking a few posts to run during the week, the more I write, the happier I am. So look for more blog posts on weight loss, inspiring moms, binge-worthy shows and funny stories.
  8. Join a singing group. In year’s past, I was always rehearsing on the weekends for a show but about three years ago, that stopped. Since that time, I’ve been talking about wanting to sing again but haven’t done anything about it. Well that stops this year – it’s time to find a group or a class where I can sing again. I miss it, I love it and that’ll keep my mind off food too.
  9. Cut down on the TV News addiction. This one is tough since I am obsessed with practically every show on MSNBC. I start my day with Morning Joe, I love catching Velshi and Ruhl for my finance tips. I look to Nicole Williams for great commentary on what’s going on at the White House. I’m hooked on Ari Melber and his insightful and lawyerly approach to the news of the day. And don’t even get me started on Joy Reid, Rachel Maddow and Laurence O’Donnell. I think if I ever met any of them, I’d pass out. Honorable mention also goes to Chuck Todd, Chris Matthews, Chris Hayes and Andrea Mitchell but I do have to work and spend time with my family so I don’t have MSNBC on a 24 hour loop as much as I’d like to. So as tough as it is, I’m going to cut back on my MSNBC addiction. Or just do something productive while I’m watching like ride my Peloton or slip on my Kangoos.
  10. Delete Facebook and Twitter from my phone. I don’t know if I have the guts to do this, so I’m going to just put that out there and will keep you posted if I actually do it. I really love reading my Facebook and Twitter feed but it is a total time suck. When I wake up in the morning, I should pop out of bed and hop on my Peloton. Instead, I spend an hour in bed liking posts, reading articles and getting sucked into the Russia investigation. I need to get those hours back and the best way to do it is to delete those apps from my phone. One more thing is to leave my phone downstairs whenever I work out. Otherwise, I’m distracted and I don’t work out as hard.

So there you have it – 10 ways I’m going to work hard at losing weight this year. I refuse to drink shakes, put butter in my coffee, become a vegan or eat food I hate. I’m going to downsize by eating less, working out and doing the things I love. The only thing I didn’t mention was cutting down on sugar. Since I do have a sweet tooth, I’m not going to rule out having something sweet in my diet each day, but I will opt for dark chocolate over cool whip and ice cream but that’s about the only thing I won’t give up on my quest to lose weight for the umpteenth time in my life.

If you need to lose weight in the New Year, I hope I inspired you with these resolutions. If you have any suggestions, let me know. I’m all ears as long as it doesn’t require doing shots of apple cider vinegar or fasting. I’m ready to lose weight the old fashioned way. Hope you’re with me too!

New York Family Leave Benefit a Big Win for Working Parents

When I was pregnant with my first child, I was working full time and remember hoarding all my vacation days so I could take as much time off as possible when my daughter was born. While I was fortunate to receive several weeks of paid leave, I managed to take 16 weeks off before I headed back to my job. The second time around, I only took off 12 weeks with that same vacation hoarding strategy in my back pocket.  Back then, I considered myself lucky because I had the time to really bond with my babies before heading back to work. I also had an extremely understanding boss who gave me permission to telecommute – something that was pretty unheard of at the time.  During my maternity leave, I was the only person in my family who took a significant amount of time off. My husband did take a few days for labor and delivery but after that, he was back in the office while I stayed home on with our children.

Fast forward a few decades and times truly have changed for the better. Paid Family Leave has been expanded throughout the state of New York. Starting January 1, 2018, part time and full time employees who work at small and large businesses will be given the opportunity to take paid family leave. The new and improved New York State Paid Family Leave benefit provides job-protected, paid time off so an employee can:

  • Bond with a newly born, adopted, or fostered child
  • Care for a family member with a serious health condition
  • Assist loved ones when a family member is deployed abroad on active military service

What’s great about this new benefit is that it’s not just for new moms. Dads and family caregivers can now take time off to bond with an infant or with an ailing family member.

As a small business owner, I was concerned about what the cost was going to be for me now that all employers are responsible for offering this benefit to their team members – whether they are part time or full time workers. It turns out that Paid Family Leave benefits are paid by insurance and employees pay for the premium through a small amount deducted from their paycheck each payroll cycle, which means there’s no additional cost to the employer. There are eligibility requirements – an employee who regularly works 20 or more hours a week is eligible to take Paid Family Leave after working 26 consecutive weeks, and someone who regularly works less than 20 hours a week becomes eligible after working 175 days – and employees who will never meet this criteria (a full-time seasonal worker, for example) will have the option to opt out.

Here are some more details about the benefit for employees, working parents and small business owners like me:

  • Eligible employees do not need to do anything until they are ready to take time off.
  • Employers must get Paid Family Leave coverage for employees.
  • Employees have job protection, ensuring they can return to the same job (or a comparable one) when they return from Paid Family Leave.
  • Employees can keep their health insurance while on leave. Employees who contribute to the cost of their health insurance must continue to pay their portion of the premium cost while on leave.
  • Employers are prohibited from discriminating or retaliating against employees for requesting or taking Paid Family Leave.

I have to say while I am at a different stage of my life and am approaching those empty nest years, it’s comforting to know that the Paid Family Leave benefit provides job protection for those of us going through difficult times that may require us to care for our loved ones. I guess it’s yet another reason why I Love New York!

For more information, visit the New York Paid Family Leave website.

5 Great Instant Pot Recipes for Newbies

Just got an Instant Pot?  Congrats and welcome to the cult…I mean club!  If you have no idea what to cook first, here are some super simple recipes to get you started…

1. Hard Boiled Eggs in 6 Minutes or Less


6 eggs

1 cup of water


Put the eggs on the insertable shelf that comes with your Instant Pot.

Pour in one cup of water.

Put on the cover and lock it. Make sure that air is not released.

Set manual pressure on high for 6 minutes


2. Steel Cut Oatmeal


One cup of steel cut oatmeal

2 tablespoons of butter

1 teaspoon of vanilla

1 tablespoon of cinnamon

1 apple – chopped minus the skin

1/2 cup of blueberries

2 1/2 cups of water


Saute the butter

Add 1 cup of steel cut oats and stir in butter

Add water, apple, blueberries, cinnamon and vanilla

Close the lid

Cook on high pressure, 11 minutes.

After it’s finished cooking, release the air and serve

3. Spaghetti Squash and turkey bolognese sauce


1 Spaghetti Squash

2 cups of water

Ground turkey

1 can of chopped tomatoes

1 jar of pasta sauce

1 clove of garlic

Parmesan Cheese

2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil



Place the spaghetti squash on the tray inside the pot.

Add 2 cups of water

Cook for 15 minutes on high pressure

Once it’s done, remove the skin, scoop out the seeds and use a fork to turn it into spaghetti squash strands.

Turkey Bolognese

Wash out the pot

Saute olive oil and garlic

Add ground turkey

Add spices (basil and parmesan cheese)

Add chopped tomatoes

Add tomato sauce

Cook on low pressure, 5 minutes

Open the lid, add the spaghetti squash

Mix together on warm

Makes 4 servings

4. Meatballs & Whole Grain Linguine


1 package of chopped meat

1 egg

1 cup of Italian breadcrumbs

Parmesan Cheese

2 tablespoons of olive oil


2 Garlic cloves

1 cup of beef broth

1 package of whole grain linguini

1 jar of your favorite tomato sauce


Mix ground beef, egg, breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, and garlic cloves

Saute olive oil and garlic in Instant Pot

Roll meatballs and place in Instant Pot

Add beef broth

Close lid and cook on high pressure for 10 minutes.

You can cook the linguini and pasta sauce on your stove top while you are making the meatballs. However, you should know that it’s just as easy to cook pasta in the Instant Pot as well(10 minutes on high pressure with water). I’ll have more recipes for pasta soon but just want you to know it’s easy to do that too.

Once the meatballs have finished cooking, you can add them to your tomato sauce that’s cooking on the stove.

Once the linguine is done, dinner is served!

The Weight Loss Chronicles: Why You Need to Weigh Yourself Every Day

I have been avoiding my scale like the plague the last few months. Even though I’ve been exercising about five times a week, I decided that I didn’t have to hop on the scale and get depressed. I would know whether I was putting on weight if my jeans were tight rather than staring at a number that put me in a foul mood.

Well, I hate to admit it, but I was dead wrong. It seems like every year I decide to do some wacky diet where I lose some weight and then inevitably fall off the wagon, gain it back and then add a few more pounds to make things that much more painful. Add in the fact that I’m approaching menopause and you’ve got a weight tsunami on your hands.

This week, I knew I was going to have to hop on a scale because I had an annual exam scheduled at my OB/GYN’s office so I decided to rip the Band Aid off and weigh myself at home. I’m so sad to admit this, but I am heavier than I have ever been in my life. I won’t count the day they weighed me when I was in labor with my son because that number is seared in my brain but I think I will lock myself in my walk in closet and never come out if I hit that weight again. The fact is, while I’m not at the highest number I have ever weighed, I don’t have an eight pound newborn growing inside of me along with a few gallons of amniotic fluid so I guess I have no excuses whatsoever about how I got here.

While I can always blame the entire year on the presidential election, at this point, that’s the same excuse as blaming it on trying to lose the baby weight. After a certain point, the only person you have to blame is yourself.


I am guilty of eating bread from the bread basket at restaurants.

I am guilty of drinking 2-3 glasses of wine every weekend.

I am guilty of grabbing a few post Halloween treats from my pantry (mini Snickers and Twizzlers to be exact).

I am guilty of inhaling a KIND bar on my evening commute.

I am guilty of eating a much larger portion size at dinner.

I am guilty of eating way too much pasta.

I am guilty of eating french fries and sweet potato fries.

I am guilty of eating potato chips.

I am guilty of eating Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough ice cream.

I could probably go on for days with all my food confessions but I don’t have time for that anymore. Instead, I have decided to cook myself thin and I’m taking my husband with me.

After reading about a woman who lost over 100 pounds by cooking food in her Instant Pot, I have become a woman on a mission. This past week, I have cooked four meals in a row in my electric pressure cooker and I’m even going to whip something up tonight — Friday night — before my husband and I go out to a movie and sneak in some low calorie popcorn. So far, my hubby has lost 4.5 pounds on our Instant Pot plan. I’m down a pound so if I keep this going for 52 weeks, I could be down at least 50 pounds by then. Okay – I don’t have that much to lose but I definitely want to drop at least 25 for now and then we’ll see where it goes after I hit my first goal.

I know that on Role Mommy I make a lot of promises and share a lot of my hopes and dreams with you. I’ve also shared a ton of my weight loss struggles. You’ve seen me lose and gain over the last decade a lot and this time around, I’m tired of the shakes, the bars, the plan, the Keto, the Whole 30, the prepared meals, even Weight Watchers. I’m all in on the cook myself thin with my Instant Pot plan and will keep you posted on how I do. I don’t really want to post a before pic just yet since I’m letting that horrifying number on the scale still sink in but I promise to share an after every time I drop 10 pounds.

For now, my OB/GYN told me to download an app called Fat Secret (in the app store it’s called Calorie Counter by Fat Secret). In a nutshell, it’s a food diary where you record everything you eat in one day.  Once you share how much weight you’d like to lose, it calculates how many calories, macros and nutrients you should have in one day. You can even eat out and select options from the app, they offer recipes and you can even take a snapshot of your food and it will record it into the system.

So there you have it. No more gimmicks. No more get thin quick schemes. No more paying people to weigh me. I’m losing weight on my own terms and this time, I really mean it. I’ll check in next week and let you know how I’m doing.

Desperate times call for desperate measures.




Monday Must Have Tech Gifts That You’ll Want to Keep for Yourself!

As we head into the holidays, I’m sure you’re busy trying to get everyone on your list a special gift to show them how much you appreciate them this time of year. But let’s face it. Wouldn’t it be great if you could get exactly what you want on your holiday wish list? Well, in case you’d like to slip someone a note or send a text with links to a few must have items, I’m here to give you my top five items for moms that you will thank me for after you convince someone to buy it for you or just throw caution to the wind and purchase it yourself.

  1. For the Fitness Enthusiast Who Hates the Gym:  One word. Peloton. It’s life changing. It’s fun. The music is fantastic – especially if you’re like me and are trapped in the 80s. The coaches are great (love love love Jenn Sherman). The community is incredible. And once you start spinning or taking those Beyond the Ride sessions, you’ll never want to set foot into a crowded spin class again.
  2. For the Frustrated Chef with No Patience:  Two words. Instant Pot.  I purchased the Instant Pot last year and since that time, I have learned how to cook eggs, pasta, chicken, meatballs, apple fritters, oatmeal and much more in my Instant Pot – an electric pressure cooker that cuts the time it takes to cook anything in half. Today I made meatballs from scratch and linguine in under 30 minutes. And I just read an article about one woman who lost 100 pounds this year and saved a boatload of money just by cooking all her family’s meals in their Instant Pot. Skinny and budget conscious at the same time? Pure genius.
  3. For the Ultimate Hair Fanatic: Thanks to my Peloton Community – more specifically, the JSS Tribe (that’s Jenn Sherman’s community on Facebook), I just discovered the Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer. It’s a little pricey ($399) but the feedback I’m hearing is pretty amazing – it dries your hair in record time and it gives you a salon quality look at home. Save money on those DryBar visits and invest in this must have item for the straight hair obsessed.
  4. For the Music Lover Trapped in their Favorite Decade: Nothing really beats having an Amazon Echo right in my kitchen. Whenever I want to know the weather, the news or play a song from the St. Elmo’s Fire soundtrack, all I need to do is ask Alexa. My son knows how to operate Alexa from his phone too and there are tons of compatible apps you can activate just by saying her name. The price has been reduced too so it’s a total steal these days.
  5. For the Stylish Smart Watch Lover: If anyone knows me, then they know I am obsessed with Michael Kors. I have so many Michael Kors bags I could open up a pop up shop. But what I don’t have are watches. The moment I saw the commercial for the Michael Kors Access Smartwatch, I was hooked. The watches are gorgeous and you can receive text messages, see social media updates, search Google and more. You’ll look like some trendy spy with your stylish new watch.  So put it on your holiday wish list – or just make things easier and buy it for yourself!

One a Day: Commit to One Thing Every Day and Change Your Life

Back in the 1970’s and 80’s there was a vitamin that was recommended for women called One a Day. I have no idea what ingredients were actually in that vitamin but all I knew was if you took One a Day, it was good for your health.  That simple brand name was engrained in my head so when I started looking for vitamins, I was instantly drawn to One a Day.

These days, there are thousands of vitamins to choose from with much less catchy names and savvy consumers are way more concerned about ingredients instead of taglines. But there’s something to the mission behind One a Day that got me thinking this morning.

What would happen if you did one thing you loved every single day of the week? It could be singing once a day. Dancing. Spinning. Or just writing. And bam! That’s when it hit me. I haven’t written on my blog in a very long time. Like an old plant that hasn’t been watered in months, Role Mommy has been withering on the vine. Truth be told – I’ve been so busy watching MSNBC on a 24/7 loop while trying to earn a living, that I stopped doing the one thing a day that used to make me really happy. Writing.

So as we head into the new year, my pledge to myself and to you dear reader is that I’m going to strive for that One a Day goal. One blog post a day that will inspire you, make you laugh or just make you think. It’s time to go back to doing more of what I love and hopefully, when I look back a year from now, my newfound One a Day routine will make a difference in my life and possibly yours too.

So here’s my challenge to you. Find your One a Day passion that you need to ignite again. Tell me what it is and keep me updated on whether you too are committing to do something that makes you happy every day. And for the record – One a Day didn’t sponsor this post…it just inspired me to get my act together. Now time to take some vitamins!