Jillian Barberie Reynolds Chats with CBB!
We recently spoke to Good Day LA host Jillian Barberie Reynolds, and the mom of one — soon to be two! — dished on everything from baby names and her nursery decorating (or lack thereof!) to her mommy-friendly job and her post-baby body.
In addition to her regular duties on Good Day LA, FOX NFL Sunday and American Idol Extra, Jillian appears alongside husband Grant Reynolds on House Husbands of Hollywood, which premieres Saturday on FOX Reality. Phew! Here’s what she had to say:
How is your pregnancy going?
This one is very different from the last one. The last time around, I ate anything I wanted and felt great all the time. I was a little tired, but that was it. This time, I was very sick the first trimester, but am doing better in the second. I was really queasy at night, and I didn’t even have dinner for a few weeks there. But I’m loving it now.
Luckily it didn’t interfere with work, because I’d get my “morning sickness” at night! I actually feel my best in the morning – I wake up at 5 a.m. for work and feel wonderful.
At the age of 42, have you found pregnancy harder?
I don’t know the difference, because I don’t know what it’s like at 25, 30 and so on. To me being pregnant in my 40s is the norm. And I’m loving it!
I have girlfriends that are 39, 40, that have been trying for years to get pregnant through IVF or artificial insemination with no luck. They say to me, “You are so blessed,” and when they say it I know they mean it.
How are your co-stars handling the news?
They were very cool about it! Definitely excited, and surprised, too.
Grant and I have been married for three years, and when we first got married I was pregnant three months later. I didn’t know that at 42 if it would be this easy, but it was, and it’s a wonderful thing.
Are you excited to be expecting a son?
That was the icing on the cake. What was most important was finding out that he was healthy [through chorionic villus sampling].
I knew it was a boy, in my heart of hearts, because I was feeling so sick. Grant thought our first child would be a boy and when it was a girl he was shocked, so he didn’t want to say anything about the sex. So when we found it was a boy – and a healthy one, at that – it was just beyond our expectations.
How’s the decorating going?
We’ve done nothing to prepare the house! Before [daughter] Ruby Raven arrived, we painted our guest room pink, and it already had a leopard-print carpet, so it was girly and perfect.
This time around…well let’s just say I have a very extensive wardrobe from 22 years of TV broadcasting, so we may have to modify the shoe closet to make it into a bedroom!
Have you chosen a name yet?
We are thinking of a bunch of different names. We named our daughter Ruby Raven, so we want to stay in the Rs. We’ve been throwing out all kinds of ideas. But I really think that when we meet him we’ll know what we want his name to be.
Will you push him toward sports?
It’s so funny to think about that. At this point in my career, it would be a great opportunity for a boy to be around, but now that I’m having a boy, I don’t know if I want him to go toward sports.
If he wants to be a figure skater I’ll be fine with that. My husband was into sports, and I was too, as a kid. I just love the discipline. But if he wants to be an artist and sit in his room in draw, that’s wonderful. I’ll be happy with whatever he wants to do.
Have you told your daughter you’re pregnant? How are you preparing her to be a big sister?
She says all the time that mommy has a baby in her belly, and that she has one, too!
She just turned 2, so she’s just starting to understand the idea of pregnancy.
I think she’ll be a great mini-mommy. She has a baby in a stroller that she pushes around the house already!
Once she gets a real little baby she’ll be a little helper, I hope.
She’s very girly, which is nice.
We had our nephews here recently, and they’re such boys!
They’re rough and tumble, and a little older than Ruby.
But they’re into dirt and dog poop and rolling around and wrestling, and she’s so not about that, which I love.
So it’ll be fun to have the dichotomy of the two different personalities.
I did not do a prenatal class or anything to prep for Ruby because I didn’t want to scare myself about labor! So we’re doing the same kind of non-preparation for her. She can see my baby getting bigger – she even said to me the other day, “Mommy, you’re big!” She notices the physical differences, and she’ll even kiss my belly and put her head on it.
What’s your at-home routine with Ruby like?
I have the best mommy job in the world. I’m off the air at 10 a.m. My husband is an actor so when he’s not doing his work, he can look after Ruby in the morning – she wakes up to him. Then I come home and we’re together and as a family. When baby number two comes along, though, I don’t know how our routine will change. But we’ll see.
I’m planning to work on Good Day LA right up until the end of my pregnancy, which I did with Ruby, too. I’m not going back to the NFL this season, though. It was 10 wonderful and perfect years, so this is a nice natural breaking point. I’ll definitely miss it! But it’s a nice new turning point to have Sundays with my family.
How did you lose your baby weight the first time around? NutriSystem?
As soon as I stopped breastfeeding, it was easy for me. I started to do the NutriSystem program, and lost the weight pretty quickly. It was six months all in all. I did have to work out for that last month, which I hate. But I did it anyway, and felt great afterward.
Do you have any plans for more children?
I always say tick-tock – I’d better get on it! I didn’t think pregnancy would come this easily to me at 42. I think that we’re good at two kids, and if nature takes its course then so be it, But I’m so blessed with a boy and a girl, and can’t believe my good fortune.
I was a career girl growing up, not thinking much about family. I was adopted and when I found my birth family through a private detective eight years ago, I found out I had two birth sisters.
When I met them, I discovered one, at just 28, couldn’t have kids. I was six years older and figured I wouldn’t be able to either. So I thought maybe kids weren’t for me, and I’d marry a guy who already had kids and be a great stepmom. And then I met my fabulous husband, and got pregnant quickly and easily.
My sister, ironically, ended up adopting from Russia, so it was lovely to see the family kind of come full circle. What a lovely, welcoming gift to me.
Are you close to both your adoptive family and your biological family?
Absolutely. The birth family has been in my life for eight years. [My sisters] grew up with my mom and dad, and I found them when one was 22 and one was 28. I didn’t know anything about them, either. When I spoke with my birth father for the first time, he told me I had sisters – not just half-sisters, but full sisters, since he and my mom had ended up marrying and raising a family.
It was a wonderful story. I’ve been very blessed in that respect. They’re great people. They were just out to visit, and my adoptive family was here to visit for the holidays, too.
Have you received great parenting advice from your moms?
Both my biological and my adoptive mom love being grandmothers!
For my birth mother it’s closure for her – she felt guilt when putting me up for adoption, which I try not to let her feel. I’ve always welcomed her into my life, and now, my childrens’ lives. Because of that, I don’t think my birth mother would ever try to impose advice. She’s just thrilled we’re in each other’s lives.
The woman who raised me got a kick out of my pregnancies because I was hyperactive as a child. She thought it was so funny that I had a daughter. She said, “I hope she’s like you” because I used to run my mother ragged! And Ruby is a little mini-me now. I’m hoping our boy is just like Grant.
Will you make appearances on Grant’s reality show?
The show is airing this weekend! It’s sort of a different take on the lifestyle most people are living these days. Women are working, and men are doing the most important job, raising the children. We’re fortunate that with his career, he can go off for a few days or longer to shoot, and then he’s back, with a two- or three- month stretch where he’s at home full-time.
We’re just fortunate to have everything, and it focuses on that. But it’s more about him and his life and how I fit in. I’m just a peripheral character. And they actually finished filming before I knew I was pregnant.
House Husbands of Hollywood premieres Saturday at 9 p.m. on FOX Reality.