"When the Kids Get Sick" Survival Guide | Becky Friedman, Nikki DeLoach, Caissie Levy

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#228 - New! How do you make it through the week when - surprise - the kids get sick? Quarantined in her podcast studio, Ellie Knaus sends out the mom-bat signal to returning beloved guests: Emmy-winner Becky Friedman (Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood) and actress Nikki DeLoach. We break down: favorite hand sanitizers, back up babysitters, the social anxiety of having the kid with the cough, and what these mothers do to reboot before heading to work after all night up with the kids. We've all heard the show must go on, but Ellie also shares a truly incredible moment from her interview with Caissie Levy, ya know, Elsa in Frozen, the Broadway Musical about a recent experience when her toddler fell ill right before an evening performance.

Also, thank you for all the love re: last week's episode "Apocalyptic Anxiety" with Claire Coffee and Bridget Moloney. Would you believe all three of us ended up with kids home sick from school. Don't forget to rate, review, and subscribe! x Ellie Knaus

And check out this month’s sponsor: FETCH REWARDS (remember promo code: ATOMIC) for the easiest way to save money on groceries!

Xx Ellie Knaus

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Special thanks to our sound engineer Owen O’Neill, production assistant Olivia Hastie, and Jeremy Turner for our original theme composition.

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About Our Guests: Becky Friedman, Nikki Deloach + Cassie Levy

Photo by    Kat Tuohy

Nikki DeLoach has worked in film and television for over 30 years starting as a Mouseketeer on "The New Mickey Mouse Club" to more recently the critically acclaimed, People Choice Award Winning comedy "Awkward." Over the years, she has racked up a long list of TV credits such as MAD MEN, GREY'S ANATOMY, THE RINGER, SIRENS, NCIS, CRIMINAL MINDS, MAJOR CRIMES and much more. Nikki is a regular on the Hallmark network leading some of their highest rated movies of all time (A DREAM OF CHRISTMAS and SAFE AT HOME). As well as guest co-hosting their popular daytime talk show HOME AND FAMILY. In the world of film, she has starred opposite Jake Gyllenhaal in LOVE AND OTHER DRUGS, Matthew Modine in THE TRIAL, Ray Liotta in THE DEVIL'S IN THE DETAILS, and in Frederic Berthe's comedy HOLLYWOO. Nikki also spent years of her life on the stage as a recording artist for record companies RCA and BMG. In November 2017, Nikki launched "What We Are," a site for women to celebrate the all of who they are with her bestie Jen Dede. She is also a spokesperson for Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and The Alzheimer’s Association.

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Becky Friedman is a children's writer and creator, whose work can be seen on such shows as Creative Galaxy, Wishenpoof, The Stinky and Dirty Show, and Esme & Roy. She is best known for her work as Head Writer of the first four seasons of Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood, and is currently writing on Disney Jr.'s newest preschool show: TOTS, as well as developing a new preschool show with the Hip-Hop powerhouses, The Roots. Becky lives with her sassy 4 year old daughter, energetic 18 month old son, and sassy and energetic 39 year old husband in Los Angeles, CA. In her spare time she enjoys running and stress-eating.

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Caissie Levy’s Broadway: Fantine in 2014 Les Misérables; Molly in Ghost (and West End); Sheila in 2009 Hair (and West End); Elphaba in Wicked (& LA); Penny in Hairspray (and First National Tour); Maureen in Rent (National Tour). Off-Broadway: First Daughter Suite (The Public Theater); Murder Ballad. TV: "Gotham." Film: "Ms. Bula Banerjee"; "Options." In addition to extensive Voice Over work, she can be heard on cast recordings of Ghost, Hair and over twenty singer/songwriter & composers' albums. She recently headlined Carnegie Hall with The New York Pops, backed up Sir Rod Stewart, and released her debut solo album, With You. She is starring as Elsa in Frozen, the Broadway Musical. @CaissieLevy


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#158 - The delightful Becky Friedman, twice Emmy nominated head writer of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood (PBS Kids), is in studio. We talk about her transition from preschool teacher to children’s media creator, her recent west coast migration, the new mom friends search, our babies’ celebrity dopplegangers, Fred Rogers' legacy, our comedic screenwriter husbands named Adam (hers executive produced The Daily Show with John Stewart), the kid games we play while lying down from exhaustion, pregnancy while parenting a toddler, and her journey from intern to head writer of a cultural phenomenon. Of course, I also get to the bottom of important listener questions like: why doesn't Daniel Tiger wear pants and how his mom is so frigging calm? xx Ellie Knaus


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Nikki DeLoach’s life journey has taken her from a farm in Georgia to her most recent starring role in the new Hallmark Channel film “A Dream of Christmas,” with plenty of WILD (!) stops along the way. Nikki sat down for a mom-date over a gift of Coor’s Light and homemade “Georgia caviar” to chat about everything from her early years in the Mickey Mouse Club (with the likes of Justin Timberlake, Ryan Gosling and Britney Spears) to how she worked her way out of the grips of deep postpartum depression while starring on the MTV acclaimed series "Awkward". Nikki and Ellie talk about their fast-track playground friendship, how Nikki’s son Hudson is Sabrina’s male counterpart (or, “spirited,” as we like to say), and the healing journey Nikki took with her own mother. Nikki also shares the great awakening she sees happening among fellow women: “I’ve seen us all go on this journey together where we’re like, ‘We are powerful and we are strong and we are leaders but also, we are nurturers and we are lovers and messy, you know, like super messy.’” And although you know we’re Switzerland here at Atomic Moms, we dip our toes into the presidential election and what it means to and for us. This is one mom date you do not want to miss. (P.S. the Southern mamas let the S word out in this one so listen without the littles.)


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#202: Broadway star CAISSIE LEVY (RENT, WICKED, HAIRSPRAY) is now originating the role of Queen Elsa in the stage adaptation of the Disney juggernaut FROZEN.

She chats with me about what it’s like playing Elsa in this historical year for women, the ways she helps her rambunctious two and a half year-old burn off steam in the city, and the secret as to why Let It Go resonates with so many people from all walks of life.

We also talk about how ambition and professional high standards can seem at odds with raising children and how she manages to stay on top of her game.

Finally, since she portrays the most famous big sister of all time, I ask her to give some “big sis” pointers to our five year-old Sabrina. Listen up and Let It Go!  xx Ellie