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Marla Sokoloff’s Blog: Chatting with Rachael Leigh Cook

09/16/2013 at 10:00 AM ET

Marla Sokoloff Blog
Shady Ladies – Marla Sokoloff

Our celebrity blogger Marla Sokoloff is a new mama!

Since audiences first got to know her at age 12 as Gia on Full House, Sokoloff has had many memorable TV roles — Jody on Party of Five, Lucy on The Practice, Claire on Desperate Housewives – as well as turns on the big screen in Whatever It Takes, Dude, Where’s My Car? and Sugar & Spice.

Sokoloff, 32, also sings and plays guitar and released an album, Grateful, in 2005.

She wed her husband, music composer Alec Puro, in November 2009 and the couple — plus pup Coco Puro — make their home in Los Angeles.

You can find Marla, now mom to 19-month-old daughter Elliotte Anne, on Twitter.

Hello everybody — hope you all had a fantastic summer!

First things first … I cannot believe you guys didn’t tell me how much fun having an 18-month-old is! This has been the most exciting age by a landslide so far.

Miss Elliotte is talking up a storm and making my stomach ache with laughter on a daily basis. Her personality has completely blossomed and she is quite the little lady now!

Over the past few weeks she has become completely obsessed with everything makeup and jewelry. Every time I turn around she is digging through my purse trying to find the right shade of pink to apply to her forehead. Apparently we’ve been doing it completely wrong all these years, ladies!

Marla Sokoloff Blog
Lovin’ lipstick – Marla Sokoloff

With no nudging on my part by the way, she has decided that she wants to be a total girly girl and has the purse (courtesy of Grandma Sokoloff) to prove it! I guess it’s time to hide the designer handbags…

For this month’s entry I thought we would revisit pregnancy. Some of us loved it, some of us hated it, but no matter how you feel about it, we all LOVE a celebrity doing it right? That way, they can get the swollen feet and the extra pounds while we sit back in our skinny jeans sipping champagne!

(Well, maybe not the last part but a girl can dream right?)

Meet my friend Rachael Leigh Cook, star of TNT’s Perception and mommy-to-be. If I told you how long Rachael and I have known each other it would make the two of us look old, but let’s just say we did a movie together at the start of our careers called The Baby-Sitters Club.

Marla Sokoloff Blog
Me a.k.a. Cokie Mason and Rachael a.k.a Mary Anne Spier – Everett

Rachael took some time out of her busy schedule to answer some fun questions about being knocked up. Hope you guys enjoy!

Marla: Congrats on your pregnancy — you look absolutely amazing! Sooo … how are you feeling?

Rachael: Ahaha thank you! One of the best things about gestation is that people tell you that you look great, even when it is far from true. That said, I don’t turn down a compliment so thank you!

I feel a-okay so far. I know that a lot of women have horrendously difficult pregnancies so I am feeling very lucky. (Knock on wood!)

Marla: Have you had any nausea or weird ailments that you weren’t expecting? I recently read an interview with you where you talked about the ever-present “pregnancy brain.” I hate to be the one that tells you that when the baby comes out, that symptom increases by about 450 percent and turns into something called “mom brain.”

Rachael: Oh nooooo!! That is terrifying! I am running on precious few brain cells these days as is. Other weird ailments include spontaneous crying (sad songs, news items, and stories — This American Life, The Moth, etc. just KILL me these days!) and serious nesting instincts are setting in. Cleaning out the garage and basement, getting rid of old stuff just feels great.

One other strange side effect is that everybody else — whom I know to be normal sized — now looks positively emaciated to me. Perspective.

Marla Sokoloff Blog
Rockin’ her Children’s Place jacket – Marla Sokoloff

Marla: Stop. You are adorably pregnant! Speaking of, any cravings? Please tell me something gluttonous like Taco Bell to make myself feel better about my 50 plus pregnancy pounds!

Rachael: Marla, you tiny thing, I don’t want to hear it!! You are hilarious and braver than I for even looking at the scale when you were carrying. Yeah, after I gained 30 pounds I stopped checking and started stepping on the scale backwards at my appointments. I just don’t care how much I gain at this stage as long as I know that the little stowaway is okay. No need to have a number associated with this excellent experience.

As for the cravings, I was shooting for the first six months so craft service was my best and worst craving ally. Anything was available to me at any given time. Taking particular punishment were citrus fruits, especially pineapple, popcorn and apple fritters. Forget it.

Marla: Well at least you got your fruit in there! It’s very refreshing to hear an actress say they don’t care about gaining weight even while pregnant, so thank you for your candor. I completely agree, as long as your little chicken is healthy, that’s truly all that matters. I don’t know about you, but I was just happy to not have to diet for the first time in well … forever! What has surprised you the most about being pregnant?

Rachael: How directly it can put you in touch with your own mortality. Knowing that you are, in some ways, growing your “replacement” in a cosmic sense, can really make you feel like the transient, temporary being that we all are. Living in L.A. doesn’t help the illusion that we are going to be around forever too, so I think this process is likely part of a needed wake-up call.

Also, how it has made me totally obsessed with my husband. I know (from reading too much online) that he’s supposed to be getting on my nerves because of the hormones, but I have never loved him more. That’s the BEST.

Marla: Ummm okay, that’s the most ridiculously adorable answer ever! I love that and now I love your husband! You are going to love him even more when you see him rocking your little one at 3 a.m. while you “sleep” with one eye open. It’s pretty amazing how you can fall in love all over again with someone you have been with for so many years.

What has been your pregnancy “must have” thus far? For me it was my trusty pregnancy pillow that literally saved me every single night!

Rachael: Oh man, I have to get one of those! Thanks for the tip, sleeping just started to get rocky.

I would say that my favorite pregnancy item/accessory involved is the pants. Maternity pants are where it’s at. All other pants have been conspiring to waste my time for the last 33 years.

Marla: I couldn’t agree more. Once those bad boys came into my life, it took months to break up with them. Why don’t all jeans have a stretchy waistband anyway? Is there a favorite brand that you’ve been wearing?

Rachael: My faves are the Jessica Simpson for Motherhood brand that Pea in the Pod sells. People actually ask if they are maternity or not.

Marla Sokoloff Blog
Bathing beauty – Marla Sokoloff

Marla: What part of motherhood are you most looking forward to?

Rachael: Marla, I have very short-term goals in this area! I will be very impressed with myself if I can just get this kid here into the outside world safely. I don’t feel qualified to pull this whole thing off, if I’m being honest. So it’s a cliché but I have to say it, just having a healthy kid is all I want.

Marla: Not cliché at all — and you are most certainly qualified! Are you finding out the sex or keeping it a surprise?

Rachael: We did find out the sex. We didn’t plan to initially but my husband and I have largely been apart for this thing, which was very difficult on several levels, so finding out the sex felt like a good way to make it all seem more real. I’m glad we did.

That said, we’re keeping it to friends and ourselves for now. I don’t know why. Oh yeah, because I’m a paranoid weirdo.

Marla: Fair enough. Will the baby’s name be North?

Rachael: Ha! Yes. No really, I respect that they went for a unique name, that takes guts. The same props go to you; Elliotte is such a beautiful name. Okay, I’ll stop comparing you to Kimye now.

Marla: No, compare away! I really see the similarities between us as well. In all honesty, if you want some unsolicited advice on the name front, I would say different and unique is definitely the way to go — but be prepared for the harsh criticism.

I just loved her name so much I didn’t think so many people would hate it! People don’t shy away from telling me just how much they hate it which always bums me out a bit. That being said, if I had to do it all over again, her name would still be Elliotte. Thank you for the compliment — glad you also like it!

Anything you want to ask me? I’ve been a mom for an entire 18 months now, so I’ve really got this Mom thing down. (Translation: I HAVE NO CLUE WHAT I’M DOING.)

Rachael: Ha! So silly, you’re doing great. I can tell by the fact that you have the time to do this column. And regarding questions … YES!

1. Do I really need to go on a hospital tour? I’ve heard it’s not really necessary. Ditto birthing class. I am more of the, “Just give me the drugs and let’s do this” school.

Marla: Great question. We took a hospital tour — I liked the idea of seeing the room beforehand. Somehow it made it less stressful to know where to check in while I wasn’t hyperventilating and writhing in pain. (Don’t worry, that won’t happen to you. Your birth will be pain-free!)

I totally dropped the ball on the birthing class! I don’t think it’s a bad idea to be honest, but by the time I got around to calling, the classes were full and my little girl was coming within weeks so I just improvised if you will.

Rachael: I am signed up to do a newborn care class, lactation coaching and baby CPR, but is there anything else I’m forgetting?

Marla: Good call on ALL of those classes! I would have been useless without the newborn preparation class. I think that covers it! Keep that lactation coach’s card handy because you will most likely need a refresher course once the real subject has arrived. Elliotte and I had our struggles in that department and our coach was everything to us.

Marla Sokoloff Blog
Ready for take-off – Marla Sokoloff

Rachael: Did you use a doula? Everyone says they are the best, but I am worried about it starting to get crowded. Plus, who wants a stranger in the room?

Marla: We didn’t use a doula. I really wanted it to just be my husband and me in the room, but that is a personal preference. Obviously if you were choosing to go without an epidural I would say you should have someone there besides your husband, just in case you cause him physical harm.

Rachael: So great chatting with you Marla and I can’t wait to meet your little girl in person! I can’t wait to make our kids watch The Baby-Sitters Club with us someday and try to make them understand that we were young once, too.

Marla: Totally! So great catching up with you Rachael. I look forward to hearing the big announcement!! If you need anything in the meantime or need me to come swaddle in the middle of the night, do not hesitate to give me a shout.

You can find Rachael on Twitter @RachaelLCook. And as always, Tweet me @MarlaSok.

Until next time,

– Marla Sokoloff

More from Marla’s PEOPLE.com blog series:

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Showing 13 comments

Sarah on

OMG i got so excited to read this. Baby Sitters Cub is awesome!!

Jen on

Mary-Anne Spier and Cokie Mason are friends? What would Kristy say?!

4mom on

I know you will never see this but I just want to say that I think your baby name is beautiful Marla. My husband and I named our daughter Ayla. We get a lot of criticism as well as a lot of compliments. The thing is the name totally fits who she is! Naming a child is very personal and can take a lot of time and effort. We should all think twice before we criticize, after all our name may not have been the most popular at that time either.

Tracy on

Loved this post!!! Marla, your baby girl is beyond adorable. She makes her name beautiful.

Tracy Martinez on

<3 The Baby Sitter's Club!!! Congrats to them both on being Mommy's!!

Shannon Z on

Elliot was a top 5 name choice for us when we were talking baby names. I think it’s adorable. I really don’t understand people who say such idiotic things to another person.

Melissa on

I loved The Babysitters Club! It was one of my favorite movies growing up (I’m the same age as Marla). I loved this blog and I think Elliotte is a good name for a girl. Looking forward to reading future blogs!

K on

Growing up in the late 80s/90s these girls were all over my teen beats. Read all the BSC books, and as a kid that was probably the first book-to-movie I was super excited to see (kind of want to rent it with my seven year old now!).

As I got older they were starring in all our Friday night teeny-bopper movies and as an adult my husband and I geeked out when MS was on DH and RLC on Psych.

Very refreshing to see them being supportive of one another. And I love the name Elliotte. LOVE it. Love it.

Leslie on

Jen, I wonder the same thing! haha. I wonder if they keep in touch with Schyler Fisk or not? I didn’t know Marla was Cokie Mason!

I think Marla and her husband picked a cool name for their daughter – Elliotte is the French feminine equivalent of Eliot, which you don’t see very often anymore, especially in the States. It’s nice to see a celeb choose a ‘normal’ yet ‘unique’ name for their little one.

criticaleye on

Elliot, Elliott or Elliotte are cute names-for boys. Even if spelled like Marla did, it’s not a girl’s name.

It’s like naming a girl Marke or Johne or Jamese. Just because you attach the e, these have a masculine sound and association for many people.

I like unique names. I like Maddox, Skylar, Shiloh, Zahara. However, unique doesn’t mean being unique. In case of Marla, the adding of the e killed a perfectly fine masculine name.

I don’t understand how and intelligent, down to earth, eloquent woman couldn’t find a better name out of gazillion perfectly fine and unique names.

tanya on

I think Elliotte is a beautiful name!

Fast Freddy Rapillo on

…a surprisingly adult convo between two of my former students, whom I forgot even knew each other ahahaha

Aras on

Oh, wow! I totally didn’t realize that you were both in The Babysitters Club! I had the VHS when I was younger, which means we’re about the same age. We’re not old, ladies! :)

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