Odette Annable on Gear, Guilt and Growing Her Family
Expanding your family is exciting—and nerve-wracking. Just ask actress Odette Annable. She and her husband actor Dave Annable recently announced the impending arrival of their second child. After struggling with pregnancy loss and infertility, the big- and small-screen star couldn’t be more thrilled. But that doesn’t mean she’s not also feeling the pressure. The dynamic will change; the workload will change—and then there’s all the stuff that comes with the territory of having a newborn. Fortunately, Annable has teamed up with Crate & Kids to streamline her registry needs and shape up her nursery design inspiration. What’s more, she’s looking forward to watching her daughter become a big sister. In the meantime, she’s enjoying some much-deserved pregnancy me-time with zero guilt. The Bump recently caught up with Annable to talk about everything from must-have gear to girlfriend getaways. Here’s what she had to say.
The Bump: You partnered with Crate & Kids to put together a registry for your second child, and worked with the design desk to create your new nursery. Can you tell us what that experience was like?
Odette Annable: I was so excited to partner with them to create my nursery and register for baby number two. The nursery design is really the most fun part of the process for me—so having access to the design desk was so helpful to make the nursery and registry process simple and personal to my own style. I’m a working mom, and I already have one very active child to run around with, so the whole process can be super overwhelming. So I’m so grateful that Crate & Kids made the registry process easy every step of the way for me. That’s probably one of my favorite parts, because I love design and I love being collaborative about any room in my house. So they helped me choose products and furniture, and helped me bring my vision together so seamlessly. And then for my registry, they also helped me choose eco-friendly products, and they helped me think about what other items I might need to add to my registry; I’ve completely forgotten everything for this baby, because it’s been such a big gap [between babies.] And what I also love is that you can shop my registry now. So everything that Crate & Kids and I have worked on and designed on my nursery and mood boards, it’s all available to shop online on the website.
TB: So what would you say your nursery vibe is this time?
OA: I really am drawn to serene and bright spaces—and we we kind of stuck with that theme in that way. But we just brought in really inviting colors and tones, and everything just feels really calming when you walk in… I wanted to create a space that really allowed me to take a deep breath and enjoy with this next baby.
TB: Registering for a second child is a bit different than registering for a first. You know more. If you could go back in time, were there any products or gear that you couldn’t have survived the newborn/infant days without?
OA: I could not live without the BabyBjorn bouncer. That thing was a game-changer, and it’s pretty compact. And you can just bounce it with your foot… My second thing is a great diaper bag. You have to have a great diaper bag that fits everything and has compartments… And then Dr. Brown’s bottles—they help with colic, and they’re tried-and-true. They’re classic—you cannot go wrong with Dr. Brown’s bottles.
TB: What are you the most excited about as you grow your family—and what are you the most nervous about?
OA: I’m the most nervous about everything. You know, we’ve gotten into such a groove with just having Charlie, and it feels like we’ve finally figured out what works for us. For the most part, we’re kind of in this dance that works really well for us. So throwing another baby in the mix is equal parts nerve-wracking and really exciting… But, you know, I think I’m the most nervous about just trying to juggle another baby—and Charlie’s older, and so we’re going back to square one and starting all over again… This baby feels like it’s going to be a completion for our family. And Charlie’s been begging for a sibling for so long. And she’s so maternal, and whenever she’s around a baby, she just lights up. I really, really think this is going to be amazing for her, and it’s going to give our whole family the thing that we’ve been wanting for a very long time.
TB: The fourth trimester is a time of learning and growth for parents as they adjust to this new transition. From your experience with your first, what advice do you have for new moms experiencing this tumultuous phase?
OA: I would say that there’s already so much pressure that we put on ourselves as women in this society to do everything. And especially when you’re having a baby, you create these expectations for yourself. Asking for help might not be the easiest thing for all of us, but that’s the exact thing that you need to do. So my advice for new moms or even—parents in general—it’s okay to ask for help. In any way, shape or form, whether that’s a family member or a friend that’s willing to help to give you a little time off—or having a nanny or whatever it is that works for your family. You really need to take care of yourself as a mom, because it’s such a delicate time, and the happiest version of yourself is going to be the best version for your baby and your family.
TB: What do you consider your parenting super-power?
OA: I really am just doing [my] best. And I think that we all kind of feel that way sometimes. But I feel like if I had to choose one thing: I’m pretty darn good at multitasking. I can take a lot on at once. And I can be pretty efficient at juggling all of it.
TB: How do you prioritize me time? What do you do to recharge your battery?
OA: I am going to Miraval this week. It’s a wellness retreat. And I’m going for a couple of days with some girlfriends, and I’m going to recharge my battery, and I’m not going to feel guilty about it. I’m going to get massages and take a couple of cooking classes and take some walks outside with some girlfriends who are near and dear to my heart; we can just talk freely about being moms and career women and all of those things. So I think it’s really important to set aside time for yourself whenever you can. You should take the opportunity and not feel guilty about it.
TB: You’ve been open about your experience with pregnancy loss and your fertility journey in the past. If you could go back in time and give yourself words of wisdom—words of kindness—what would you say to yourself?
OA: As difficult as it is, it will all work out the way that it’s meant to in the end. For me, it was also really reassuring during my journey to understand that a lot of it is really scientific. You place so much guilt on yourself about whether you nourish yourself the right way, or if you did something that you thought maybe harmed the baby. Very little in this process has to do with what you’re doing. So I would just say, relax as much as you can—and that’s the most difficult thing to do. I know that because I’ve been through it, but it really has very little to do with you. It’s all very scientific.