May 14, 2007

Haute Spot Interview: Darla Shine - The Happy Housewife

Darla Shine - Happy Housewife, Author, Mother, Visionary and much more!

I read Darla's book, Happy Housewives, last year and have since given it or recommended it to countless friends. Encouraging women who choose it to be proud of their jobs as full-time wives and mothers, she offers advice in a 10-step format that is fun to read and easy to follow. While her book's target audience is the stay-at-home-mom, her suggestions are easily applied to the haute working mom as well...

Darla Shine's Happy Housewives Club website is a fun place to hang out online and chat with other at-home moms about everything from what to cook for dinner to potty-training to budgeting, fashion, and more!

Darla is a really sweet person and a blessing to many (see below).
Read on to learn how she stays haute!


Favorite getaway?
My favorite getaway is anyplace that isn't 'home.' I think it is so important to get out of the house with your husband and your children. Leave the bills, the chores, the stress behind and hit the road. Even if you go to the hotel with the indoor pool twenty minutes away, it's great by me. With our busy lives, I love to have the time to connect and have fun together. I do love the Mohonk in upstate New York. A great weekend getaway.

Favorite restaurant?
Any four star or over restaurant is in my favorite list. I love to eat, it is my favorite hobby. I won't eat at a fast food place or anyplace because I am hungry. I carry the latest copy of the Zagat guide in my car and I am always looking for the best restaurant in whatever neighborhood I am in. I am very particular because I am a big cook so I want only the finest ingredients and the most interesting dishes. I love to travel and I have favorite restaurants in every city. My favorite in NYC is Mesa Grill owned by my favorite chef Bobby Flay.

Favorite gift to give?
I go through gift spurts when I find something new and trendy that I love, that year everyone gets it. This year my big gift for all the women in my life was the mom charms. Many websites have these now but I love the ones at that I have on my website that are made from a stay at home mom in Canada, Alli, who started her own jewelry business, allisoriginals, from her kitchen.

What's in your beauty bag?
My beauty bag is pretty simple. Moisturizer, foundation, blush, eyeliner, mascara and lipstick. I have about 30 lipsticks, all over the house, in the cars, and in my coat pockets. I cannot be without lipstick and I encourage every haute momma to make sure that even if she has no other make up on, she wear a lip gloss or lipstick.

Favorite hotel?
This is a hard question to answer. I have been lucky enough to go to so many beautiful hotels. I have to say if I had to choose one it would be the Phoenician in Arizona.

Cocktail of choice?
Margarita on the rocks, with salt.

Style advice?
Stay current. I see moms wearing jeans from 1984. You can stay in style on any budget. I suggest Ann Taylor, Newport News, J Crew, Old Navy.

What is style?
I think style is wearing something that fits your personality. There are so many different trends out there right now. You could be preppy, hippie, flirty, or sexy. I know what I look good in and it is 'my style.' My style right now is the summer, flirty sun dress. Macy's is full of these cute dresses at affordable prices.

Top of style wish list?
My wish list? For me right now, it's espadrilles for the summer. I can't get enough of them. Here is the latest pair on my have to go get them wish list - The Jessica Simpson 'Jasp' Ankle Wrap Pump.

Best thing that's happened to you as a result of writing the book?
By far the best thing that has happened to me after writing Happy Housewives is all the new women I have met. I have had more than 20 thousand women write to me. I have answered every email. I have travelled all over the US and I have met many of them. Now they come to my website and we chat every day and share our lives together. I have made so many friends. It has really been the most wonderful experience.

You have changed so many lives with your book. Did you realize you would have this great of an impact when writing Happy Housewives?
I wrote my book because I knew there were a lot of women like me who were upset by the negative image portrayed of the housewife. That we were all a bunch of hags. I wanted to change that stereotype. I didn't realize however just how many women out there would be so happy that someone was finally defending their choice to stay home to raise their families. I received thousands of emails from women thanking me for saying it was okay to choose full time motherhood and homemaking. They say I made them feel validated. Many wrote that they were deeply depressed about being home because society made them feel badly about it and my book was the first book they read that gave them the strength to feel pride in their choice. And I still receive emails daily from women who write me to say Happy Housewives saved their lives. How amazing is that? These letters, next to my children and husband, are truly the best gifts of my life.

Any other words of wisdom for our readers?
I would remind all women that having babies doesn't mean you have to start living like a strung out tired mother. You owe it to yourself to spend some time on yourself mentally and physically. If momma ain't happy no one's going to be happy. So spend some time doing what you love. Don't give up your favorite hobby or dream, incorporate it into your new mommy routine. My happy housewives run the household budget. We own over 50% of the home businesses. We look great. We are educated. We have great sex lives. And these are the best years of our lives. So enjoy them.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love your stuff!

For what it is worth, I know a good website www.wishpot.com to make a free online wish list. You can add stuff from any store or website. It grabs the name, image and URL automatically. It is pretty simple, but I like it a lot.

You can also get a widget to show your list on your blog. I haven't done that yet, but have seen other ones. It is pretty cool.

A couple of my friends used it for gift registries because then they didn’t have to be limited to just one store. I use it just to help me remember stuff I find and want.

here’s a wish list if you are curious to see what it looks like

wish list

12:28 PM  

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