In her latest PEOPLE blog, Elisabeth Röhm opens up about her summer with Easton, 11, and how she went from a slime-making skeptic to willing participant
Elisabeth Röhm is a busy mama!
Best known for her roles as Serena Southerlyn on Law & Order and in films like American Hustle and Joy, the actress is currently starring as Aria Price on her Sony Crackle show The Oath.
Röhm, 46, is also a proud mom to 11-year-old daughter Easton August, whom she shares with ex Ron Anthony. In January, she confirmed to PEOPLE that she had gotten engaged to Jonathan Colby, a retired judge.
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Be honest … are you a slime house or not? That’s a real question these days with the little ones. I’m sure you’d confirm that!
As far as I can tell, Easton doesn’t have one friend who isn’t slime obsessed. It’s almost like therapy to this younger generation. Why? I couldn’t tell you for the longest time. I was totally against it, and a resistant supplier of slime tools due to my compulsive need to have a spotless house. It irked me to see slime stuck to the walls, and it bugged me even if it was in Easton’s room because lo and behold it would be smeared on stuffed animals, bedding or clothing, which would therefore be ruined for good.
I’ve gotta be honest: I thought the whole slime thing was a ridiculous fad. I found it slightly annoying because, of course, glue down the sink poses all kinds of issues — and yes, the garbage disposal has been broken once by icky-sticky slime. I was a reluctant supplier of glitter, clay, Elmer's glue, activator and all things slime-related because I just couldn’t fathom how my brilliant daughter could be so obsessed with slime.
Wasn’t she going to be the president one day, or a major civil-rights attorney? The making of slime, the remaking of it, the watching it be made on videos and entire slumber parties dedicated to the making of it confused me.
When I was little, it was all about swimming at the lake and eating chips and hot dogs. Why couldn’t they just go outside and play in the dirt? I’m happy to wash loads of laundry, but ugh, scrape slime off the walls? Not for me! Also, I love sports, and would’ve been thrilled if these kids wanted to go outside and play some more in that wholesome, old-fashioned way that I relate to so much. However, when I opened my mind and stopped being so uptight, I realized it didn’t need to be an either/or situation. Less bickering ensued, and more harmony took root.
Not to mention I’m a huge advocate of arts and crafts at the house, so I really just had to embrace slime as an art form. Plus, I couldn’t help but notice that it got Easton and her friends off their phones — and that’s where this whole slime thing really took off.
They do manage to go outside and play. But what of this slime thing? What of this new phenomenon? This is a familiar theme in all my friends’ houses. In our world, play dates, friendships and parents are partially defined by whether they are a slime house or not. It was the darn slumber parties where in order to prepare, we had to write thorough lists and hit Michaels with enthusiasm.
At first, I went through the usual barking orders about no slime in the living room or bedrooms and only the kitchen. I went through the inevitable icky slime splatters on the walls in said kitchen. But in this technological era, with devices trumping all other forms of connecting, communicating, relaxing and passing the free hours of childhood, I stepped into becoming an official slime house.
RELATED VIDEO: Slime! Sheet Masks! and Even More Fads and Viral Moments That Dominated 2017
I gave cabinet space for all the supplies and stopped complaining about the cost of tubs of Elmer's glue, foam balls and plastic trinkets that could make Easton’s slime stand out from the crowd. I embraced the idea that if you can’t beat them, join them — and now, much to my friends’ chagrin, my house is truly a place to freely make all slime dreams come true. I’ve become a slime advocate! I even allowed a slime account on Instagram that I participate in, so that Easton’s bizarre obsession with slime (which I’ve discovered is not so bizarre after all) can thrive.
Ironically, we’ve connected more, and I’ve stopped playing the role of complaining parent, which I loathe. I’m sure you relate, PEOPLE.com. Doesn’t it just become exhausting to constantly say no, or “Do this,” or “Do it better,” or “Now, not 3 minutes ago,” or “Why do I have to ask you 10 times? Why are you making me the bad guy? Why can’t you just listen?”
Don’t get me started on the new preteen/teen vibe, where you constantly hear yourself saying, “Please don’t talk to me like that.” I sometimes feel like my daughter has been body-snatched by a 16-year-old millennial who thinks I’m her personal assistant. I mean, she is growing up in Hollywood, so I can see how she’d get confused — NOT!
Anyway, this summer has become much more fun and relaxed now that I’m not swimming upstream against the slime phenomenon. Who knew there were even conventions you could take your children to and make all their slime dreams come true? I also always wanted to be that mom who my kid’s friends liked. It was a dream to be THE house that the kids wanted to hang out at. And being a slime house certainly helps in my popularity with Easton’s tribe!
I’ve also grown to realize that slime is relaxing. Like cooking, which is my great passion, slime-making is all about using your hands to create something appealing that quiets your mind. Rather than getting mixed up in the daily stresses, it doesn’t hurt to run your fingers through sticky, colorful glue until you make it the perfect consistency with a happy array of colors, sparkles, add-ons — and discovering fragrance took our slime-making to a whole new level. Even some of my adult friends agree!
You can find our new mommy/daughter creations @sunbeamslimers on Instagram. We’ve got lights, camera and action illuminating our slime creations! I found that rather than complaining about it, if I embraced it, we could be a united front and connect more on Easton’s level. I know she likes that too.
And that’s the whole encapsulated slime story.
More from Elisabeth’s PEOPLE.com blog series:
- Elisabeth Röhm’s Blog: Why I’m “Tough” on My Daughter and Expect Her to Do School Work Alone
- Elisabeth Röhm’s Blog: My Fiancé and I Live in Separate Cities — for the Sake of My Daughter
- Elisabeth Röhm’s Blog: The Real Reason I Took My Daughter on a Road Trip Through Iceland
- Elisabeth Röhm’s Blog: Navigating the Crazy World of Co-Parenting After a Split
- Elisabeth Röhm’s Blog: I’m Back — and Ready to Talk Parenting Post-Split
We’ve been pretty much home bound this summer, which is unusual because my work always seems to take us out and about. But much like being home on Christmas, there’s something to be said about nesting and making solid memories on the home front. Thank goodness there are some great movies out this summer.
We will take our usual road trip up to Big Sur, and I can’t wait to show you our journey. Easton and I have become very good at road-tripping as way of bonding! We might even throw in a good one up to Mammoth Mountain before the summer ends to go find those lakes I was talking about.
In other news, both Easton and I are obsessed with this new and flattering swimwear called HydroChic. It’s kind of like an alternative to swimwear that makes you feel so confident in your body, so I thought I’d share! Seeing as we live at the beach, we are living in our HydroChic gear, and I thought you guys would love just how awesome this new body-conscious style truly is.
It’s also chlorine-proof and won’t fade, and the tops and bottoms have pockets, which usually only male bathing suits have. So I’m totally in — and so is Easton, while she enjoys her long, sunny days of beach camp. Suffice it to say, summer has been rocking and so much fun!
So that’s life on the normal side of things. More to come, PEOPLE.com. Until next time …