Rainbow Bright looks dull compared to our Smarty Mom of the Week. Meet Michele Hochstrasser, literally the happiest, funniest, coolest chic you will ever come across. Nothing phases her. Michele is everything we want to be. Her passion for her family and friends is immeasurable. Michele is the type of person who will give you her jacket if you are cold. She will cook you dinner if you sneeze. She runs fast as a Kenyan. Every year she throws a party in her backyard for 150 people. Yes, I said 150, and she makes all the food herself! She is perfect. She is one of our dearest friends. She has brought us laughter, love and a friendship that we treasure. She tells the greatest stories and makes you laugh until you cry. Michele is the mother and wife that people write novels about. She is so patient and so kind. Recently, Michele held her sister-in-laws (Karen) hand during her last moments in this world and told her it was okay to pass on. Michele told Karen that she would watch out for her daughter forever. And she will. Amazing comes so easy to Michele. She is a gift. She is our Smarty Mom of the week. To know her is to love her.
We love you Michele. You are our Sister Wife.
Husband/children – I’ve been married to Hoc 9 yrs, 6 months & 8 days. Hoc is the guy that still makes me laugh but also surprises me @ our doorstep by ringing the doorbell with flowers & a bottle of wine in his hands. He’s the kind of dad that reads Harry Potter to our kids @ night-in not just one British accent, but several (he tells me its b/c there’s different dialects). Hoc is my best friend & I can’t imagine going through this crazy life without him. Hannah is almost 7 yrs old & is such a little doll! She has a style of her own & a heart of gold. She truly is a little Punky Brewster. I will be so heartbroken the day she doesn’t think I’m the best mom in the universe (and I know that day will come). Elijah Boone is 4 & he’s my biggest crush! He is wild & crazy, but @ the same time-he will grab my face, stare into my eyes & tell me that he loves me most.
Hometown -I was born & raised in Zanesville, Ohio-home to the famous “Y bridge”, or better known lately as the town where all the lions, tigers & bears oh my……. were let loose. I often wonder if we’re doing our kids an injustice by not raising them there. There is absolutely NOTHING about my childhood & friends that I don’t love. I will forever take my kids back each summer to experience the awesomeness!!
Yrs in Charlotte – 13
Your friends call you rainbow bright, why?
My dad might be the happiest person I know!! Just being around him will make you want to be a better person. He lives his life by the Golden Rule & trusts everyone with his whole heart. Just last year, he sold his car to a man that @ the time didn’t have the money to pay my dad. My dad let the guy take the car & told him to pay him when he could. There were lots of people telling my dad that he would never see the money or the car again. 18 months later, he got the money. So, I strive to be ½ as happy & trusting as my dear pops!
You come from a famously funny family. What is the best childhood memory you have?
There are so many, it’s hard to pick just one. I have two amazing brothers, Shane & Chad. I never wanted a sister b/c they were so rad! Now that I’m a mom, looking back & knowing that 5 days a week, my mom had a home cooked meal on the table & that my dad would sneak home from work to eat with the family, then go back to work is so amazing to me. I know how much hard work & effort that takes. But one of the funniest memories I have is vacation talent shows. Not only did the kids participate, but the adults as well. It could be anything from break dancing, a magic show, or my mom singing her high school Alma matter. Just last year on our family vacation, we had a talent show. Its pee your pants, hold your stomach & cry funny! It’s a tradition I will carry on with my children.
Tell us how your sister in law Karen changed your life?
Where to begin!?!? Even before the loss of a child or being diagnosed with ALS, Karen made me want to be a better person. She was the whole package! Not only did she have the looks, but she had the brains & personality to match. She was the girl that other girls wanted to be like & the girl all the boys wanted to date. After Karen was diagnosed with ALS in 2010, we were all so angry & questioning our own faith. But Karen somehow remained faithful through it all. Some of her last words to my brother were, “you can choose to be bitter or be better…….be better!” That quote alone sums up the person that she was. I think about what an amazing Legacy she has left & often wonder what my legacy would be. I know that I need to “Be Better”!
What is your secret talent?
It’s a secret
What one thing do you do selfishly for yourself?
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I wanted to be a stay @ home mom. I actually thought it was ridiculous that my parents wanted to send me to college. ☺ Thank goodness that I listened to them & spent 4 ½ glorious years @ The Ohio State University. O-H………
Favorite family Activity?
We love just getting together with other families @ each other’s homes. We have the BEST group of friends.
Favorite Date night spot?
We like to mix it up – Moosehead is our favorite local watering hole & where we met. Barrington’s is our favorite romantic spot in town. Honestly though, I love putting the kids to bed, cracking open a beer & watching college football with Hoc the best!
You throw such amazing parties and seem so relaxed what is your best advice for the rest of us?
I start planning & cooking 3-4 months in advance. You can never be too prepared. The best thing to own for big parties is a deep freezer. But most importantly, it’s your guest list. Honestly, it’s the key to a great party. If you surround yourself with amazing friends, then an amazing party you will have. You need friends that will dance like no one is watching, sing (or recite Braveheart) like no one is listening, cook when I am unable & laugh like there is no tomorrow. Each person that walks through the door come party time- brings sheer joy to my soul. Also, I don’t invite people that care if my house is super clean! ☺
What is the funniest thing your kids have ever said to you?
Hannah once told me that she was so happy that I didn’t leave each day to go to a job – she loved it that I work for her & Elijah.
What kind of grandmother do you think you’ll be?
I don’t know, but I hope to be the perfect combination of my grandma Myrtle & my mom (better know these days as nana). Grandma Myrtle always sent her grandchildren postcards with the most inappropriate things written on them. My roommates in college loved getting them as much as I did. My mom (nana) is the perfect combination of a fun yet loving grandma. I know that when my kids are with her they feel safe, loved & silly! I also think it would be cool to be a super hot granny…..wishful thinking!