This week on Spawned, I had the best time speaking with the one and only Jonathan Van Ness!! They’ve just released an amazing new picture book, Gorgeously Me!, which is already making waves as a #1 new children’s book on Amazon.

Our chat was not only fun but super inspiring. We talked about their favorite children’s book from their own childhood, the book that traumatized them (eek, I can see why!), their strongest memory of Barney, the importance to Jonathan of faith and spiritual connection, unpacking the mantra “I am exactly who I’m meant to be,” some optimism for the future — and importantly, Jonathan’s compelling idea about how parents can help our kids become the best version of themselves.

And yes, we even discussed the best hair products for taming my dreaded summer frizz. Because, I had to ask.

Give it a listen now and subscribe to Spawned on Apple, Spotify, or Amazon. I loved our conversation, and I’m sure you’ll take away a lot from it.

Gorgeously Me! by Jonathan Van Ness, illustrated by Kamala Nair: A wonderful book about helping kids be exactly as they were meant to be

You can find Jonathan Van Ness on Instagram, TikTok, and
Find Gorgeously Me!, illustrated by Kamala Nair, on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and where it’s 15% off this month using code PRIDE24

Related Links From Today’s Show:

Related Episodes:

  • Kate Brookes on parenting a trans child or any child on their own path
  • Kristin Russo on being a compassionate parent of LGBTQ kids

Our Cool Picks of the Week: 

  • Jonathan loves Bodkin on Netflix, a limited series he describes as like Only Murders in the Building… but Irish.
  • Liz recommends @BlairImaniAli on Instagram, particularly her “Smarter in Seconds” series, which is delightful and truly informative. (Jonathan loves her too!)


Thanks to our sponsor, Premium Prep

This episode is graciously sponsored by Premium Prep, the personalized college counseling service that helps with college applications, financial aid, essay writing, and more. Mentioned Spawned or Cool Mom Picks for a free 30-minute 1:1 college counseling session with a best-fit counselor they match to your student’s needs and interests.

Premium Prep College Counseling


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