As a columnist for The New York Times, Bee Shapiro’s work life is filled with all of the excitement and pressure that comes with writing for the most well-respected newspaper in the world—deadlines, research, and long hours. When she became pregnant with her first daughter, Ellis, three years ago, Bee, who is a self-proclaimed fragrance junkie, had a light bulb moment—why was the perfume industry still caught up in antiquated notions. She realized that the formulas on the market had unnecessary Parabens and Phthalates, so, in her spare time she set out to create her own unique brand, which she lovingly named Ellis Brooklyn. Now a mama of two, juggling work, a side business, a toddler and a baby, Bee has learned a thing or two about what works and what doesn’t in terms of keeping her head above water. Here, we spend the afternoon with Bee, and her charming daughters, and discuss everything from throwing childbirth expectations out the window to her natural beauty secrets.

This Mother’s Day, we are honored to collaborate with NYDJ to celebrate the beauty and power of motherhood. Here we share a glimpse into the life of writer and entrepreneur Bee Shapiro and discuss how she is raising two strong, independent girls.