lily_aldridge

She might be a Victoria’s Secret Angel, but she defies all model stereotypes: She’s totally down-to-earth and says being a mom is the greatest joy she’s ever experienced. We chatted with the gorgeous Lily Aldridge while she was sitting in the hair chair prepping for a Victoria’s Secret shoot at Milk Studios. The supermodel is married to Kings Of Leon frontman Caleb Followill (yes, “Sex on Fire” was written about her), and they have a two-year-old daughter Dixie Pearl. Lily is extremely hands-on, and unless it’s a quick overnight trip, Dixie comes with her wherever she goes.

The family splits their time between Nashville and New York and just returned from England where they celebrated Dixie’s second birthday at the London Zoo, complete with a cowgirl theme, of course.

Lily got real with us about how she stayed fit during pregnancy, her secret to getting back in shape, her must-have beauty products (she’s obsessed!), her genius tips for traveling with a toddler, and much much more.

Stellar Advice

I was pregnant at same time as Adriana Lima and Alessandra Ambrosio and they gave me such good advice for how to stay in shape. I did a lot of prenatal yoga and got lots of massages. I relaxed and had the most beautiful pregnancy – I loved every second of it.

Back To Work

I saw all my friends bounce back with exercise and just being healthy. It was so inspiring to me, so I never worried about that. It was hard work getting back in shape, but I did it, and I was really proud.

After I gave birth, I started doing Ballet Beautiful with Mary Helen Bowers, and she got me ready for the VS fashion show four months post-baby. Getting back in shape with her was an amazing experience. She just had a baby too, so she has a prenatal workout video.

Model Moms

Being a working mom is such a good example for your child. All my friends I work with – Adriana, Miranda [Kerr] and Alessandra – are all amazing working moms, and it’s so great to have such a support system with your friends.

On The Go, Go, Go

Dixie already has so many frequent flyer miles – she comes with me everywhere unless it’s a quick overnight trip.

I pack tons of snacks (raisins and seaweed crisps are favorites) and download a bunch of educational apps on the iPad and let her go to town. It keeps her happy and the people around us, too, since she isn’t crying. Right now, she’s loving ABC Storybots, where robots sing songs about each letter. She can count and sing the ABCs – if you find the right educational apps, the iPad is a great learning tool.

I also have this amazing thing called the CARES Harness – it’s FAA-approved and you don’t need to carry on a car seat. It’s so incredible and makes traveling so much easier.

The Perfect Pregnancy

I did not model while pregnant. I checked out and really relaxed, enjoyed myself and had a healthy, happy pregnancy. I didn’t have tons of cravings, but one night at 4am, I was really wanting dried pineapple and I contemplated waking my husband to go and get it. I waited until the morning, but when I finally got it, it was glorious. Looking back, I should have woken him up!

Pregnancy Wardrobe

I loved my J. Brand maternity jeans. I also loved Hatch – they make such beautiful dresses. I had this one dress from them, and I swear every time I wore it, I got more compliments on it than any other outfit I have ever worn. They were so cute and comfortable. I would love to do a collaboration with them the next time I’m pregnant.

Beauty Junkie

I am a beauty freak. I went to Sephora yesterday and bought like the whole store. I love Creme de la Mer moisturizer, Proactiv Plus cleanser, Pure Fiji starfruit body scrub, Fresh lemon bath cubes, Tom Ford’s Jasmin Rouge and anything Kora [Miranda Kerr’s line].

When I was pregnant, I didn’t put anything on my body that wasn’t all natural. I went a bit wild. I have a whole new respect for ingredients and products. I used a lot of Mama Mio and Kora. To prevent stretch marks, I used a lot of oils – I put as many on as I could, and it worked! Loved the one by Mother’s Special Blend.

#Momfail

I swore I was going to feed her only healthy, organic stuff, but I totally give her juice and ice cream – you have to let them be kids! Also, trying to go down those swirly slides at the park always leads to an embarrassing moment.

The Name Game

I love classic names. I loved the name Pearl and my husband is Southern and he loved the name Dixie. We had two names picked out, and when she was born, I looked at her and just said, she’s a Dixie Pearl! She is such a firecracker and has so much personality – her name suits her perfectly.

Downtime

If you granted me three hours alone on a Saturday afternoon, you’d find me in bed watching House of Cards or Orange Is The New Black being so happy.

Lifesaving Baby Products

Water Wipes are so gentle and amazing, I now use them on my face! Other wipes were irritating her. I’m obsessed with Waxolene as a cure-all because it’s all natural and works. The Fisher-Price swing was a life saver, but next go around I’m getting the mamaRoo that sits on the floor.

The Challenge

Right now, Dixie is so social, and I’m really trying to teach her manners and to share, but it’s really hard to teach a two-year-old. I throw a full-on party in the street when she shares something with anyone, even me!

Night, Night

One of the greatest things I’ve done as a mom is put Dixie on a sleep schedule, using The Dream Sleeper book. It helps everyone get through the day – she knows when it’s time for a nap and is a great sleeper, and I can schedule workouts around that.

Yes, She Eats

I am a huge foodie. I appreciate delicious food, whether it’s a $1 taco or dinner at a five-star restaurant. One of my favorite meal is the roasted chicken at Barbuto, and the chef Jonathan Waxman just opened a restaurant in Nashville that I haven’t been to yet. When we land there tomorrow, the whole family is going directly to Adele’s for dinner. We are so excited he came to Nashville!

Fun With Dixie

We are members of The Nashville Zoo, which is incredible – one of the best zoos I’ve ever been to. At the end of my pregnancy, I would walk around there all day trying to get my labor started.

Dixie and I are obsessed with the homemade popsicles at Las Paletas and it’s right next door to the park, so we get popsicles and go to park and that’s my idea of a perfect day.

Georgina Bloomberg

For a lot of new moms, getting out the door in clean clothes is a lofty goal. Georgina Bloomberg’s current mission? To make the 2016 Olympics USA Equestrian Team.

The daughter of former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg is currently ranked 5th in the country and has been riding since she was 4 and competing since age 6 (determination clearly runs in the family).

But horses aren’t the only thing taking up Georgina’s time – she’s a single mom to 1.5-year-old Jasper, whom she had with ex-boyfriend Ramiro Quintana, a fellow equestrian she parted ways with when Jasper was a few months old.

She and Jasper spend half the year in Wellington, Florida, and the rest of year between Manhattan and her farm in North Salem, New York, where they’re joined by (get ready for this): 5 dogs, 1 rescue pig (Wilbur, from a pound in New Jersey), 8 show horses, 3 retired horses, and 2 rescue mini horses.

And those aren’t the only animals that benefit from her care – she’s an Equine Welfare Ambassador for the ASPCA, a founding member of Friends of Finn (dedicated to fighting puppy mills), and even publicly criticized her father’s administration for not making animal welfare a higher priority.

We caught up with the passionate, not-afraid-to-speak-her-mind Georgina to talk relationships (so hard!), guilty pleasures (so good!), her stint as a YA author, and the trap she fell into with baby gear (DON’T do this). Meet the one and only Georgina Bloomberg.

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On Marriage

Marriage is not super important to me – most end in divorce. I love the idea of being with someone forever, but I don’t think it happens very often. Marriage was coined at a time when people died when they were 30. That stability would be nice, and I am definitely open-minded about it, but I don’t need it in that way some women do.

Being A Single Mom

Jasper’s father will always be in his life and be a friend figure to him, but he is not involved in the day-to-day. It’s hard, but it’s much easier to do it by yourself than with the wrong person.

Her Crew

I don’t know any other single moms, but I have a lot of mom friends, and I have a single dad that I’m really close to. He was planning on having kids with his partner, who changed his mind, so he went ahead with the surrogate on his own. It’s nice to have that support system – his son and Jasper are just a few months apart and love to play together!

Pregnancy Don’t

I rode in a horse show at 5 months pregnant, which is typically a big no-no. I was feeling so strong and healthy, and I chose only the safest horses to ride. I felt confident in that decision at that time. That said, now knowing my son, I wouldn’t do it again. It’s an unnecessary risk that isn’t worth it.

Eating Her Words

I always said I would stop riding when I got pregnant. I also said I would never pull out my phone in the middle of a restaurant and hand it to my child, and I have definitely done that too! Becoming a mother has made me a lot less judgmental.

Back In The Saddle

I had a C-section, so I couldn’t ride for at least 2 months after having Jasper. I put on 30 pounds while pregnant and left the hospital 15 pounds lighter. I worked out throughout my pregnancy: I was jogging until I hit 6 months, then used the elliptical. I made myself do it even if it was for just 20 minutes.

On The Road Again

We travel a lot for my riding competitions, so he never has a consistent routine. To make up for it, I try and have some constants – reading the same story before bed, bringing the Munchkin sound machine/projector and stuffed animal everywhere we go.

Wise Words From Michael Bloomberg

My dad taught me to not care about the little things and to do what you know is right no matter what – both in life and in regard to your child. If you think you can do something, even if people tell you you can’t, go for it.

Going For The Gold

In that spirit, my goal is to make the 2016 Olympics equestrian team. It’s very difficult to make it: You can be #1 today and nothing tomorrow. You and the horse must be healthy at the same time, which happens like 10% of the time – right now my best horse is injured. I am aiming for it and it’s my goal, but it doesn’t define me or crush my career if it doesn’t happen.

YA Author

While I was taking time off from riding after having back surgery, I was approached to do a series of YA novels and was initially not interested – I’m not a writer and don’t enjoy it at all – until they told me it was about the horse show world. I live in that world and it’s a topic I love and care about, so that was really compelling. They paired me with a YA writer and we each accepted what the other was good at and worked well together. It was actually a really fun experience.

On Her Nightstand

I’m reading Wildlife Wars about animal and environmentalist rights activist Richard Leakey, who risked his life to take on elephant poachers in sub-Sahara Africa. Angelina Jolie is directing a movie based on it.

Guilty Pleasures

Celebrity gossip and really bad reality shows like Four Weddings, all The Housewives, 16 & Pregnant. I don’t watch anything that’s not reality. Did I just admit that?!

Ch Ch Ch Changes

Becoming a mom has made me more emotional. I am way more sensitive to the news. I used to not have a lot of sympathy for people – I saved it all for animals. Now I see everyone as someone else’s child: If someone has done something terrible in the news, I think, that’s someone’s son, and it affects me a lot more than it ever used to.

Learn From Her Mistakes

I totally fell into the “cool trap” and bought the sleekest baby gear and coolest baby ensembles, only to quickly realize once he was born that it was all useless! It’s not about the way stuff looks, it’s about how it works, and sadly the things babies love are not exactly easy on the eyes!

Name That Baby

I’d always really liked the name Jasper, and he was due on Christmas Day – I found out Jasper was one of the three wise men, so it just fit!

Photo Courtesy of Isabel J Kurek Photography