Former GOP Leader Allegedly Kills Mom’s Dog and Claims He Received ‘a Command from God to Do It’

A former leader of the Republican Party in South Carolina was arrested after he allegedly stabbed his mother’s dog to death and claimed he’d been commanded by God to do it.

Todd Kincannon, a former lawyer who served as the executive director of the GOP in South Carolina, was arrested on July 26 at his parents’ home in Simpsonville, according to a police report obtained by WYFF News 4.

Kincannon’s mother, who has not been named, told police she was “absolutely terrified” when her son allegedly began attacking her dog, Bailey, with his bare hands, the outlet reported.

He “needlessly mutilated” his mother’s 10-year-old beagle and cattle dog mix by “choking and stabbing the dog multiple times until death,” according to warrant issued for his arrest, obtained by The Greenville News.

The former lawyer was found bloody outside of his parents home in nothing but his underwear with cuts on his arms and hands and covered in dog hair, according to the police report.

Bailey was found lying in a pool of blood in the family’s kitchen. His motive for the attack came from God, he allegedly told police.

“I know I’m the second coming of Christ and I got a command from God to do it,” he said, according to the report.

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“Every 1,000 years Jesus needs a sacrifice and blood must be spilt,” he continued.

It is unclear if Kincannon has retained an attorney.

He was taken to Greenville Memorial Hospital where he underwent a psychiatric evaluation, according to The State.

Before his arrest, he allegedly told police he knew he would undergo an evaluation but “from a legal standpoint you know, it’s in the state constitution that God is a sovereign and I honestly think he told me to do it,” the publication reported.

The Simpsonville Police Department has an arrest warrant for Kincannon for a charge of ill-treatment of animals, The State reported.

This is not the first time the former lawyer has been arrested. His law license was revoked after he was arrested in 2015 on criminal domestic violence charges, according to WACH News.


PEOPLE.com

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Autism risk determined by health of mom’s gut

The mother’s microbiome, the collection of microscopic organisms that live inside us, determines the risk of autism and other neurodevelopmental disorders in her offspring, new research shows. The work raises the possibility we could prevent autism by altering expectant moms’ diets.
Child Development News — ScienceDaily

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‘Let’s Keep Making Noise.’ Serena Williams Dedicates Wimbledon Final to ‘All Moms’

Serena Williams competed in her 30th Grand Slam singles final at Wimbledon this weekend, in a re-match of the 2016 Wimbledon final when she defeated Angelique Kerber. While Williams didn’t win in their most recent face-off, the fact that she was in the tennis competition’s final a mere ten months after giving birth to to her daughter Alexis Olympia is an impressive feat in and of itself. Particularly as her pregnancy and birth led to a number of health issues, including a pulmonary embolism and multiple surgeries.

While Williams lost to Kerber, she was still surprised by her performance, noting in a post-game interview that she “didn’t expect to do this well in my fourth tournament back.” After the final, Williams took to Twitter to express her appreciation for her fans with a shout-out to all moms. She wrote that the “past 2 weeks was a sound for all moms” whether they choose to “stay home” or work, adding “you can do it you really can! I’m not any better or diff than any of you all.”

Williams’s husband Alexis Ohanian took to Twitter to express his awe at his wife’s accomplishment. He noted that after her pregnancy lead to a pulmonary embolism that nearly cost Williams her life.

Sports – TIME

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Abby Lee Miller Involved with Possible 8th Season of Dance Moms amid Cancer Battle

Abby Lee Miller is not letting her cancer diagnosis get in the way of returning to Dance Moms.

While determinations on an eighth season has yet to be made, production is casting and Miller is involved in the process, a rep for Lifetime confirms to PEOPLE.

In March 2017, the dance instructor announced her resignation from the show in an Instagram post, accusing officials behind the series of treating her “like dirt” after she wrapped filming for season 7B.

“I WILL NO LONGER TAKE PART IN DANCE MOMS,” Miller wrote. “FOR THE PAST SIX YEARS/SEVEN SEASONS I HAVE ASKED, BEGGED, AND EVEN DEMANDED CREATIVE CREDIT FOR ALL THE IDEAS, AWARD WINNING ROUTINES, THEMES AND COSTUMING – TO NO AVAIL!”

“I don’t have a problem working with any kid, I love children and have dedicated my life to making other people’s children successful!” she continued. “I JUST HAVE A PROBLEM WITH BEING MANIPULATED, DISRESPECTED, AND USED – DAY IN AND DAY OUT BY MEN WHO NEVER TOOK A DANCE LESSON IN THEIR LIVES AND TREAT WOMEN LIKE DIRT!”

In April, one day after undergoing emergency surgery for what was initially thought to be a spinal infection, the 51-year-old — newly released from prison — was preliminarily diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a cancer that develops in the lymphatic system.

“It was not an infection, it was a type of a non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma – it’s a type of a cancer,” said Dr. Hooman M. Melamed, an orthopedic spine surgeon at Cedar Sinai Marina Del Rey Hospital who has been treating the star.

“We’re getting an oncologist involved and we have to figure out what the next steps are as far as chemotherapy or radiation or more spine surgery. Depending on the tumor type, depending on the sensitivity of the tumor – it just depends the type but I feel more than yes, she will undergo chemotherapy or radiation,” Dr. Melamed said at the time.

“If we didn’t do something, she was going to die,” Dr. Melamed previously told PEOPLE. “Her blood pressure was bottoming out. She was not doing well.”

Before her diagnosis, Miller had been living in a halfway house since serving her 366-day sentence for bankruptcy fraud at the Victorville Federal Correctional Institution in California, which she entered in July.

Dancing with the Stars alum Cheryl Burke took over as coach for Dance Moms season 7.


PEOPLE.com

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10 Instagram moms who remind us we’re never alone

by

Becky Vieira

posted in Life

Motherhood is amazing. It can also be lonely. Thankfully other moms are there to lean on when we need it. Unless you’re like me, who spent the first few months of my son’s life without any mom friends. 

I turned to Instagram to fill the void. And while I love the accounts of moms who dress their entire family in matching white outfits (while sitting on their white couch, eating homemade snacks made of fruits and vegetables grown in their garden, and served on plates made in their home pottery studio), that wasn’t me.

Luckily, with some searching, I found “my people.”

There are celebrities I love and follow (Chrissy Tiegen is all of us, and Busy Phillips is my imaginary best friend). But the bulk of my tribe is comprised of these amazing moms who fill my Instagram feed with love, humor and honesty:

For the mom craving honesty: motherhoodunderstood is the mom friend we all crave. Brooke Christian and Jen Schwartz are PPD survivors who are busting taboos and changing conversations. They get real about everything and say what we’re all thinking. Only this duo does it with empathy, humor and grace. Follow them here.

For the mom seeking balance: motherhonestly is a community created by Blessing Adesiyan. She’s a chemical engineer, mom of two and the queen of personal balance. She’s found a way to thrive at work and home, on her own terms. She inspires and helps other moms find their path of balance. I always feel so encouraged by her feed. Follow her here.

For the sarcastic/funny/real mom: macgyveringmom22 is one of the first moms I found on Instagram who helped me feel normal and not alone. Macgill Frutchey is a mom of three boys who tackles life with wit and humor. Her keen observations leave me nodding and cracking up, and I’m constantly sharing her memes with friends. But I really fell in love with her when she began documenting her battle with a rare and aggressive sarcoma (cancer) in between those hilarious memes. She’s an inspiration — and a constant source of comfort, sisterhood and humor. Follow her here.

For the fit mom: sweatwithlaurenhefez inspires me to move. Her photos make me happy and draw me in. And, dare I say, make me want to exercise. She’s always having fun while staying fit. She peppers her account with real mom life — meals, trips to Target and reminding us moms how fantastic we are. Follow her here.

For the healthy/foodie mom: lifeandthymez is everything I aspire to be in the kitchen: healthy, delicious and simple. Mom Zlata Faerman’s recipes are toddler-friendly. Meaning, you don’t have to make a separate meal for the adults and children. And did I mention simple? Two ingredient, healthy cookies. Many are also low FODMAP and gluten free. She also shares her picks for healthy store-bought snacks when you can’t make your own. Because… motherhood! Follow her here.

For the tired mom: meetyoundreamland helped my son sleep. And, as a result, I was able to sleep also. Kerrin Edmonds is a certified infant and pediatric sleep consultant, and she shares all sorts of tips on her Instagram page. As a bonus, she hosts a live, free Q&A every Thursday night where she answers all your sleep questions. If I can’t make the live session I’ll read the questions the next day, and I’m constantly picking up sleep tips. Follow her here.

For the timeless mom: olliella is the feed for sisters Chloe and Olivia Brookman’s gorgeous collection of wares for nomads, homebodies and small folk, Olli Ella — but it’s so much more. The photos are not only of the gorgeous products, but the sisters’ lives with their families. From travel to the everyday, it will draw you in. And the accompanying messages will fill your heart and make you feel at home. Follow them here.

For the outdoorsy mom: beccajcaldwell is letting her kids run loose — on trails, in National Parks and anywhere without a roof. Rebecca Caldlwell’s pure love for the outdoors is being passed along to her children. Her account is full of family photos in the great outdoors, showing how we can help our own little community enjoy the beauty around us. Follow her here.

For the mom fighting PPD: whentheboughbreaksdoc was a groundbreaking documentary that ripped the curtain off postpartum depression and started a long overdue dialogue. This companion account shares personal stories and inspirational memes. Follow it here.

For the mom looking for a friend: wittyotter is the mom who will give you honesty through laughter and tears. Full disclosure, this one is mine. I’m nothing if not honest. I’ve tried to create an account that shows what I was craving in my early days of motherhood: truth, compassion and friendship. I share the funny (and embarrassing) times, unfiltered moments along my PPD journey and photos of me in my hospital granny panties. Follow me here.

 

Have you made mom friends on Instagram or other social media platforms? What are some of your favorite accouts to follow?

Images by Becky Vieira, Motherhood Understood, Macguyvering Through Motherhood, Life and Thymez, Meet You In Dreamland, Olli Ella and When The Bough Breaks

 

BabyCenter Blog

BABY CARE UPDATE:

Perfect Gifts for the Perfect baby

These 2 Netflix shows just get us as new moms

by

Laura Falin

posted in Life

Bar none, one of the best inventions for new parents over the past few years has to be all the TV-on-demand services out there.

In the middle of the night when you’re up feeding the baby, or in those precious few minutes after everyone’s in bed for the night, you can now choose from hundreds of shows and movies. And now — lucky us! — there are two shows on Netflix that highlight the new mom experience in a way that resonates amazingly well.

The Letdown is an Australian TV comedy series that premiered on Netflix in April. As I watched the first few episodes, I had to stop myself from shouting, “THIS!! This is what I wanted from Tully! Exactly this!!”

The show stars Alison Bell, also a co-creator and writer, as Audrey Holloway, a mother trying to navigate her first few months of parenthood. She joins a non-judgmental new mothers’ group (that’s actually kinda judgy, in the way these things tend to be) and shows up late and flustered for her first meeting. The show made me laugh out loud at several of the situations she faces — including one where she tries to bargain with a drug dealer when she accidentally parks in his spot after driving a crying baby around all night.

It also made me tear up several times as well. In one scene, she cries into her partner’s shoulder while she lists all the ways she’s a terrible mother. I may have done this last week, and I don’t even have a baby anymore. It tackles Instagram-perfect moms and the hidden challenges they fear they can’t share.

One episode wonderfully shows the tension Audrey feels when she wants to go out with her pre-baby friends, but realizes things have changed irreversibly now that she has a newborn. It’s a perfect blend of snarky, slightly dark comedy and drama that shows the struggles that come with motherhood.

Fair warning: there is plenty of swearing in the show. In fact, one of my favorite running gags is when Audrey forgets herself, curses, and then belatedly covers her 2-month old’s ears as if that might help.

I also recently watched Ali Wong’s Hard-Knock Wife, which was released on Netflix on Mother’s Day. She performs the stand-up while heavily pregnant, and even if it had been a flop (it’s not), watching her do high kicks, squats, and some serious dance moves while walking around the stage for over an hour is impressive in itself. I could barely get off the couch at that stage.

This is Wong’s second comedy special — she filmed Baby Cobra while pregnant with her first child — and she talks about a variety of topics including sex and childbirth (she says those mesh panties we all know so well are “made of the same material they use to package fancy Korean pears in”).

She talks about her emergency c-section and wonders, “Why the f*** did I do all that pushing when there was this perfectly good emergency exit?” She also takes on breastfeeding, saying it made her feel like The Giving Tree. And she addresses the low parenting standards for dads, compared to what moms are expected to do for their babies. It’s funny, and relatable, and very dirty — she may talk about kids but this definitely isn’t something to watch around them.

Both shows are wickedly entertaining…and both might make you feel like finally, in the land of television, someone actually gets how new moms feel.

Do you have any favorite shows right now that perfectly capture the new mom experience?

Screenshots from Hard Knock Wife and The Letdown

BabyCenter Blog

BABY CARE UPDATE:

Perfect Gifts for the Perfect baby

17 self-care tips for moms who have no freaking time or money

by

Maggie Downs

posted in Life

Self care is the buzzword du jour, I guess.

After I gave birth, everybody talked about it, including the doctor, my friends, my mom’s group, and a random person in the drugstore aisle. And while they meant well, I always wondered how?

How can you possibly care for yourself when time is in short supply, money is tight, and all your energy is given to the tiny human who depends on it?

Selfie of mom with sleeping baby

I do think it’s true that moms – and new moms especially – require a solid dose of self-care as a necessary part of caring for others.

But putting on the oxygen mask first before you care for others feels counterintuitive as a new mom. Moms routinely eat cold food as they feed their own children first, abstain from sleep to tend to another, and do without the resources they need in order to provide for the babies. It doesn’t surprise me that women report higher rates of extreme stress than men.

Whenever my well-intentioned acquaintances offered suggestions of self-care, like, “You should treat yourself to a pedicure!” I couldn’t help but laugh like a maniac. Yeah, I know my needs should come first, but who will take the baby? How will I pay for it? Is it worth the guilt I’ll feel for spending resources like time, energy, and cash on myself?

 

Woman swinging and sun shining by her crotch

There has to be a better way to self-care.

After 2.5 years of mothering, I think I’ve finally realized I needed to change my own definition of what it means to treat myself. Self-care doesn’t have to be a costly day at the spa. It doesn’t have to involve spending money. And it doesn’t always mean spending a large chunk of time away from the family.

It’s anything that returns your focus to you. It’s making room for at least one happiness in a day of chaos and poopy diapers. It’s recognizing that you and your health needs are essential.

And then it’s integrating this into your daily routine.

As the writer and activist Audre Lorde said, “Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation.”

Here are some suggestions for doing just that:

• Cross something off your to-do list.

• Play your favorite song and have a five-minute dance party with your child.

• Unplug from electronics for an amount of time, whether it’s a half-hour or an afternoon. Put the phone on vibrate. Don’t answer email. Turn off the news.

• Plan some healthy snacks ahead of time. Cut up veggies or fruit, make bean dip, freeze homemade juice popsicles, have a smoothie ready to go.

• Light a candle.

• Put flowers on the table.

• If your child is doing something crafty, join in. It’s fun to draw, scribble, paint, or get your hands in clay.

Paint palette with dirty brushes

• Cuddle an animal.

• Look at beautiful things, whether that means window shopping or an art museum.

• Use your old coffee grounds to make a bath scrub that feels decadent but costs almost nothing.

• Get some fresh air. (During my son’s naps, I often brought the baby monitor outside while I sat on the front steps. Just having a few minutes of air and sunshine made my entire day better.)

• Take a walk.

• Do something nice for someone else.

• Play on the playground. (My non-scientific opinion: Swings are the best.)

• Drink an extra glass of water.

• Stretch. Find some good videos on YouTube.

• Go to bed early.

How do you care for yourself?

Images by Maggie Downs, and Unsplash and iStock

This post was originally published in March, 2017.

BabyCenter Blog

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Perfect Gifts for the Perfect baby

Keep Marching: We Can Close the Wage Gap for Working Moms

Keep Marching, by life-long activist and MomsRising Executive Director Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner, is a beginner’s guide to women’s activism centered around the ways gender, race and class intersect and the importance of an intersectional fight for economic justice. The following is an exclusive excerpt of the book for Ms. readers published to mark Moms Equal Pay Day—the day mothers work until each year to make us much as fathers did by the end of the year before.


For the 81 percent of women who become mothers, the wage gap is even bigger—and it’s bigger still for moms of color, queer moms and single moms. The truth is that right now, in the United States of America, being a mom is a greater predictor of wage and hiring discrimination than being a woman. Our country, which claims to love, adore and respect motherhood, pays moms just 71 cents to every dollar that dads earn.

To get a real picture of what’s going on, here are the specific numbers: Asian American and Pacific Islander mothers are paid 85 cents; white, non-Hispanic mothers are paid 69 cents; Black mothers are paid 51 cents; Native American mothers are paid 49 cents and Latina mothers are paid just 46 cents for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic fathers. Furthermore, mothers in low-wage jobs are paid just 66 cents for every dollar paid to fathers in low-wage jobs.

Felicia experienced blatant wage discrimination while working at a technical support center for a large retail corporation. She was hired to work the exact same job as her brother-in-law, and after talking to him discovered that she was being paid about $ 4 an hour less to do the exact same job. She went on to find out that all of the men at work, working the same job, with the same amount of experience, were making $ 4 an hour more than her. And, as it turns out, all the women were making the lower wage.

Moms in general—whether minimum wage earners or beyond— earn just 71 cents to every dollar that dads earn, but the discrimination in pay is compounded for single moms and their children. Paid just 55 cents for every dollar paid to all fathers, single mothers are among those who face the worst wage discrimination in our nation.

When Tara was growing up, her family was barely able to get by. Tara and her mom (who was single) lived with Tara’s grandmother, which was the only way that her mom would have enough money to get gas to go back and forth from work and to purchase essentials. After a while, Tara and her mom moved into a place with her uncle. If it was not for her grandma and her uncle, they would have had a hard time keeping a roof over their heads and getting food to eat. The wage discrimination that single moms like Tara’s face is impacting a tremendous and growing number of women and children. A study from Johns Hopkins University found that 57 percent of babies born to millennials were not born within a marriage. Technically these are “single mothers” by many people’s definition, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a partner.

Family structure and our culture is changing. Currently, 69 percent of American children live with two parents, down from 88 percent in 1960, and 23 percent live with a single mother, up from eight percent in 1960. It’s important to note that even though the number of children who live with single mothers has nearly tripled since 1960, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t a same-sex partner involved, and it also doesn’t mean that dads or other partners aren’t involved. For instance, while Black families have some of the lowest marriage rates in our nation, studies show that Black fathers, regardless of marital and cohabitation status, are the most involved with their children’s daily lives of any group of fathers in our nation.

The numbers demonstrate that family structure and the story of families has changed, but our workplace structures and public policy are outdated. Our economy and our families are both negatively affected by the fact that many of our key public policies have fallen behind the realities that numerous women and families in America are living in right now. It’s on all of us to catch up. Mia Birdsong, co-director of Family Story, is one of the few people focused on the incredibly important work of combating the racism, sexism, and classism that’s permeated much of our culture’s view of families. Among other things, Birdsong and her organization are hard at work updating our country’s outdated picture of the typical family in America.

Birdsong was inspired to help launch Family Story because she noticed that there is greater system-wide support for “nuclear” families than other family structures. In other words, our national policies, workplaces and culture often discriminate against families that don’t match a 1950s imaginary vision of one mom, one dad and two kids—even though that family structure is becoming the exception, not the rule. The change Birdsong wants to see is an end to a hierarchy of family structures so all types of families are able to access the resources they need without prejudice regardless of gender roles, race and class. I couldn’t agree more. It’s long past time to update outdated ideas about families in our nation.

Lani, a working mom, shared that the wage gap makes it nearly impossible for her or her wife to stay home with their children—despite having “good” jobs as attorneys. Both moms went back to work when their baby was only three months old. It was just basic math. “When my wife and I sat down and figured out how much we each made and the cost of childcare,” Lani says, “we found that between rental prices in our region and student loans, there was no way for either of us to be out of the labor force.” Lani and her wife ended up delaying plans to have a second child because childcare prices are so high. There’s no way they could afford to have two children in childcare, so they have to wait. At the same time, the clock is ticking: They can’t wait too long and risk fertility issues.

Two moms face a double-wage-hit whammy, but two dads get a double boost, and that has an impact on the options open to them as parents. The New York Times reported that couples with two dads are the most likely to have a stay-at-home parent—a heterosexual couple is the next most likely, and two moms are the least likely even if they want to because it’s often simply unaffordable.

Clearly, sexuality also needs to be front and center in any discussion of the wage gap as it intersects and adds up to be a double or triple whammy on the pocketbook. In our nation, 4.2 percent of people between the ages of eighteen and forty-four identify as lesbian, gay or bisexual, with 62 percent of that cohort being female. Further data find that 71 percent of all those who identify as bisexual are female, and 49 percent of all those who identify as lesbian or gay are female. In addition, a recent study found that 1.4 million individuals identify as transgender.

Claudia Goldin, a labor economist at Harvard University, has found in studying age, race, work hours and education that people working in the exact same sectors experience wage gaps. For instance, female doctors and surgeons earn 71 percent of men’s wages. Female financial specialists earn 66 percent of men’s wages. Wage and hiring discrimination has been a major hurdle for women since we joined the workforce. This is discrimination against women in real time. This is what happens when inadvertent implicit bias against women runs unchecked, even though studies show that the work women do is far from inferior. Of course, there’s not a secret committee of people deciding to pay women less, but the subconscious negative assumptions about women and work add up to a massive amount of money lost for women over time.

Naysayers—who are usually a medley of corporate CEOs, conservative legislators and media pundits—often ridiculously (and insultingly) argue that the wage gap doesn’t deserve attention because women just aren’t negotiating enough, aren’t equally qualified, are trading pay for benefits or other ludicrous excuses. But the wage gap can’t be blamed on women for a supposed “lack of confidence” or a lack of leaning in. The truth is that women ask for raises just as often as men, but women are granted raises less often—and to make matters worse, women are also regularly penalized for asking.

What we’re seeing is flat-out discrimination. The wage gap isn’t the result of women’s lack of confidence, quietness or bad choices—and it’s also certainly not a reflection of men being “more motivated by money” than women, as New Hampshire state representative Will Infantine said as he argued against the New Hampshire Paycheck Equality Act. There is very real wage and hiring discrimination going on.

One series of studies painted a stark picture: Moms were hired 80 percent less often than women with equal résumés who didn’t have children. And when moms are hired, they’re offered salaries that are on average $ 11,000 lower than what’s offered to non-moms. On the other hand, dads with equal résumés were offered $ 6,000 more than non-dads, proving that the antiquated idea that only men need paychecks large enough to support their families is alive and well—not to mention, keeping many families poor and hungry. Studies have also shown that employees who identified as mothers are perceived to be less competent, less promotable and less likely to be recommended for management, despite having the same credentials as non-mothers. Still today, women have to think about whether to hide their status as mothers during job interviews.

A major study found that men receive a wage bonus of 11.6 percent when they become fathers. But moms, on the other hand, get a wage penalty for motherhood of 4 percent per child; that, Michelle J. Budig, writing in Third Way, reports, “Cannot be explained by human capital, family structure, family-friendly job characteristics or differences among women that are stable over time… This motherhood penalty is larger among low-wage workers while the top 10 percent of female workers incur no motherhood wage penalty.”

Often when books are written and stories are told about the fight for women’s equality, the main focus is only on highly paid professional women breaking the glass ceiling and the hurdles women face in those sectors. That’s an important conversation to have, but it’s time for a reality check: The hourly wage gaps are adding up into annual earnings gaps. Only 10 percent of all women in the labor force earn $ 75,000 or more annually, which means 90 percent of all working women earn less. In fact, 31 percent of women are in the next lower wage bracket, earning between $ 30,000 and $ 74,999 annually, and the majority of working women—59 percent—earn less than $ 30,000 annually, while only 40 percent of men earn less than $ 30,000 annually.

There are many negative rippling repercussions to a full 90 percent of women earning less than $ 75,000 a year, more than half of whom are earning less than $ 30,000 a year. One is that too many women are working hard, playing by the rules and still falling below the poverty line—and are struggling to raise families and open doors for their children to thrive. Christy shares that in her life, the wage gap, coupled with low wages, caused her to have two or three minimum jobs at one time when her sons were young in order to make ends meet. Even with that extra work, Christy often still couldn’t get her young children proper dental care, tutoring or clothing when they needed it.

Wage discrimination against women and moms needs to stop. It’s hurting our economy, our businesses, our families and our communities. It’s not just me who thinks this. Economic studies show that equal pay for women would boost our entire national economy. A recent analysis of data over time by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research found that if women received equal pay for equal work, it would cut poverty by more than half for women and families and add $ 513 billion to our national economy. Having pay parity, studies find, would increase our gross domestic product by at least three percent. When women don’t have funds to spend in our consumer-fueled economy, businesses have fewer customers and there is lower economic activity across our nation on the whole.

We can do better for everyone and for our economy. To start, we need to update our outdated family economic security policies to help fully close the gap. Families need access to paid family and medical leave, earned sick days and affordable childcare. We cannot close the gaps between moms and women without children, and between women and men overall, without these policies. Of course, we also need pay transparency legislation like the Paycheck Fairness Act so that apples-to-apples comparisons of pay can be made and outright discrimination can be stopped in its tracks.

It doesn’t take rocket science to move these policies forward. We’ve already seen a lot of forward movement at the state levels because of people reaching out to elected leaders. It takes as many people as possible raising their voices and demanding that change happen.

Make no mistake: Together we can march our entire nation forward, not just for women but for everyone. When women win, America wins—and women can lift our nation.

Kristin Rowe-Finkbeiner is co-founder and executive director of MomsRising, a grassroots organization of more than a million people nationwide that works across a variety of issues from paid leave to equal pay, immigration and healthcare.

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The post Keep Marching: We Can Close the Wage Gap for Working Moms appeared first on Ms. Magazine Blog.

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BEST DEAL UPDATE:

Women under 40 having fewer babies? Make way for older moms

by

Maggie Downs

posted in Life

Let’s hear it for the olds!

According to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, women in the United States are having babies at record low rates. In 2017, births were at a 30-year low, down two percent from the previous year.

With one exception: American woman over age 40 are having more babies than ever before.

A happy woman of color with gorgeous curly hair looks over her shoulder

The birth rate for women age 40 to 44 in 2017 was up two percent from the previous year.

“The rate for this age group has generally risen since 1982,” says the CDC report.

Meanwhile, the birth rate for women over age 45 remained the same, although that number rose by three percent from 2016 to 2017.

“This suggests, as a Pew Survey found earlier this year, that more women are delaying childbirth into their late 30s and early 40s, but ultimately choosing to have children in the end — just perhaps not as many,” says an article, “The Rise of Older Mothers,” in The Atlantic.

The article proposes that more woman are likely to get degrees, establish their careers, and then have a baby rather than give birth during their earlier work years — potentially because women who have children between the ages of 25 and 35 suffer a hit to wages that they rarely recover from.

However, “it’s too soon to say whether this delayed childbearing will result in fewer babies overall,” according to the article.

A woman walks alone on a beach during a violet and yellow sunset

I am an older mom. I was already of advanced maternal age when I gave birth to my son, and the doctors then acted like I was one of the Golden Girls. Now, almost four years later, I’m in my early 40s, I’d love to get pregnant again, and I don’t even know what they’d call me now — Advanced Crone? Geriatric Mama?

But for all the times I mutter about my aching back or wish I had the energy of a twentysomething, there are definite benefits to being an old mom. I think I’m in a better emotional space than I was when I was younger. I am more tolerant and relaxed. And while I’m not well off, I’m about as financially stable as I’ll ever be. Plus, kids born to older parents might have higher IQs and longer life spans, according to NBC News. (And who am I to argue with NBC?)

I look forward to more older moms joining me. If you want to find me, I’ll be the one at the playground wheezing as I chase after my son, cursing under my breath as I contort my ancient bones down the spiral slide, then laughing all the way down.

Are you delaying having children until you are older?

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I compare myself to moms I don’t know on Instagram

by

Maggie Downs

posted in Life

The other day I unloaded over the phone to one of my close friends. Fights I’d been having with my husband, frustration with my toddler’s independent/insolent streak, work and other personal challenges. I spilled all the tea, basically.

“Wow, that does not sound good,” my friend finally said. “But at least your life looks great on Insta.”

I laughed, because it was true. But I can’t stop thinking about how strange that is.

The world's cutest toddler runs through a field of orange poppies

You can see the stunning field of wildflowers I posted on Instagram, not the argument we had in the car on the way home. You see my son frolicking on a trail, not the no-nap wildebeest who stomped through the house later.

The world's cutest toddler runs through a field of delicate purple flowers and yellow wildflowers

It made me think about how often I open the Instagram app and gaze at the images from moms I don’t know.

They’re lean and fit, wearing gauzy dresses as they bathe their pudgy, adorable babies in farmhouse sinks. They live in minimalist houses with toys made out of wood. They cook healthy, sensible but whimsical-looking lunches (plus the occasional ice cream cone for #FriYay). They take long walks along a foggy beach with their hot partners, their babies snoozing contentedly in natural-fiber carriers. Even their “Whoops! We made a mess baking cookies!” posts are cozy and inviting.

I have a messy, imperfect life, but these moms have “lifestyles.”

I know that things aren’t perfect for these families. I mean, I know that on a rational level. The things on Instagram are carefully curated images, designed to show a small sliver of someone’s life. There’s no complete picture.

It’s easy to forget that when I scroll through the feed, though, longing for a clean house with gleaming hardwood floors or a baby who coos instead of screams. It’s easy to want what they have. Heck, even jealousy feels authentic and meaningful when you’re looking at mamas who exude wellness and inspiration. (Once I closed the app on my phone, growling, “I want a smoothie bowl in a Mason jar with granola on top! I want to make things that are healthy for me!” So if jealousy motivates you to do things that are good for you, what could be wrong with that?)

But I still look at their profiles and wonder if the perfect lifestyle is just one #vanlife journey away.

A field of orange poppies in California. They are bobbing their heads in the gentle breeze

So what’s the solution? I don’t think weaning myself from social media is the answer. I’ve written before about the connections I’ve cultivated through these platforms, and I believe the good far outweighs the bad. Besides, I really like to look at pretty photos. Instagram still feels like a haven on the Internet, even if it comes with a hefty side dish of envy.

I think I just need to remember what my friend taught me: It’s possible for both the flowers and the fights to coexist. I know that from my own experience.

People are complicated. Our lives as mothers are complex and multifaceted, and there are as many ways to raise a family as there are families. (Some do it in flowy linen dresses; I do it in old tee-shirts and yoga pants.) And while a picture might say 1,000 words, our realities consist of entire libraries. It’s not necessarily a fabrication to only reveal one chapter at a time.

And here’s the other thing: I still want to spend my days frolicking through flowers with my son. Even if it never ends up on Insta.

Do you compare yourself with other moms on social media?

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Happy Mother’s Day! 20 Celebs & the Moms Who Made Them Who They Are

There’s nothing like a mother’s love, and these stars will be the first to tell you that the love, support and dedication they’ve received from mommy dearest got them through their toughest times, and ultimately, made them who they are. Celebrate Mother’s Day by checking out stars such as Beyoncé, Rihanna, Michael B. Jordan and […]

The post Happy Mother’s Day! 20 Celebs & the Moms Who Made Them Who They Are appeared first on EBONY.

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Mother’s day is for all moms — including the fictional female characters that passed down wisdom through the TV screen.

Members of the Mashable team picked their favorite TV moms and shared why these complex, caring women where so impactful. Read more…

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Bereaved moms on Mother’s Day: 5 ways to tend a broken heart

by

Tara Shafer

posted in Parenting

As a bereaved mother who has, as well, three healthy children, I am here to issue forth a dispatch from the department of brutal truth: Many bereaved moms (with or without living children) have decidedly mixed feelings about Mother’s Day.

I was going to say we “hate” the day but that’s not true. It’s more nuanced than that. Mother’s Day breaks us because it celebrates (in overly simple terms) the joy of motherhood. There is no wiggle room. It can feel oppressive.

If you know a woman who has lost a child it can be difficult to know how to acknowledge a day that celebrates motherhood in such amplified ways. Flowers and chocolate and indulgent massages – these are all part of the festive nature of the day.

But how to mark and celebrate the beauty of what was, along with the devastation of what was lost? This is hard. For women coping with loss, the contrast is both stark and crazy-making.

My mother has a friend whose daughter was killed in an accident when she was eighteen and on her way to study abroad. Once, while speaking on Mother’s Day, this woman wished my mother a happy Mother’s Day. My mother wished her the same. There was a pause.

My mother’s friend said, “But I’m not a mother anymore.”

This was, of course, not true. This woman ached (and aches still) for her daughter. She was not disavowing her daughter – she was punishing herself.

On Mother’s day, friends don’t let bereaved mother friends punish themselves.

Here are five ways to comfort a broken heart on Mother’s Day.

  1. Send them flowers. Flowers are appropriate for any occasion. If you feel that an overt wish for a Happy Mother’s Day makes no sense, you are probably right. (This may be less true if she has living children too, but still). Your card can be more nuanced than is generally permitted on Mother’s Day – a day traditionally and frustratingly celebrated without any nuance.Try something like: “I am thinking of you today and of your entire family. You know so well the joys and the heartbreak of motherhood. You are an inspiration and I just wanted to celebrate you. I’m here if you want to talk.”
  2. Send them a gift certificate that allows them to hide. Spa gift certificates can backfire on Mother’s Day because you don’t want your recipient to be surrounded by moms grousing about how much they have to do. You don’t want her in with the ladies wearing spa robes and sipping bubbly from a champagne flute. Instead, send a subscription to Amazon Prime and tell her that The Americans rock. Then, go and watch with her.
  3. Call/Facetime. It is often appreciated when people overcome the awkwardness of the day to just ask how someone is doing. So overcome the shy – and just open the conversation.
  4. Send them something decadent. Send them chocolate truffles. Write a note about giving permission to oneself to just go ahead and indulge.
  5. Let them know you understand their mixed feelings about Mother’s Day. As a bereaved mother with living children I can’t say that I hate Mother’s day. I don’t. But I can say that I like to treat it more as a reciprocal holiday wherein the kids honor me and I honor them. (It’s not my favorite day, though). And I usually think mostly of the moms I know who don’t have living children. It is they who I honor on this day. They are the women I remember.

A little validation goes a long way.

How do you support a bereaved mom on Mother’s Day? If you are a bereaved mom, what helps you?

Photographs courtesy of I-Stock. Used with Permission. 

This post was originally published in May, 2017.

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Grandma’s Trophies, Indirect Wins Over Federer and Other Tennis Memories Upon My Mom’s Passing

Ryan Rodenberg pays tribute to his late mother through their shared love of tennis and the cherished memories the game brought him. 

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A lab analyzed three nursing moms’ milk — here’s what it found

by

Joyce Slaton

posted in Products

If you’re breastfeeding or pumping, you may notice that the milk you put out changes from day to day: it may look creamier, or have different-colored tinges according to what you’ve eaten lately. But did you ever wonder if what’s in the milk changes along with its looks? Or if the milk you’re giving your baby has enough of everything he needs?

We did. So when Lactation Lab, a new California company that runs samples of breast milk through a testing process similar to the ones dairy farmers have done on their cows, offered to do an analysis of the nutrition and toxins in three of our writers’ milk, we took them up on it. Note, this is not a sponsored post, though Lactation Lab did the testing for free. Here’s what happened.

Getting the milk to the lab

Lactation Lab mailed three test kits out to our bloggers Whitney Barthel, Becky Vieira, and Sabrina Garibian.

At the time of testing, Whitney was nursing a newborn, Becky was nursing a 1.5-year-old, and Sabrina was nursing a 2-month-old. Each mom pumped out enough milk to fill Lactation Lab’s 1-ounce test kit containers, which wasn’t hard for Sabrina and Whitney, but Becky found it a little difficult to get the required ounce: “I’m 18 months in and not producing as much,” she says. “We do our one big nursing session in the morning and I didn’t want to use all his milk for this. So I took a lactation booster and did some dry pumping for a few days prior to increase supply and was fine.”

Once the ounce was ready, each mom froze their milk, then shipped it overnight using Lactation Lab’s prepaid box. At the lab, the milk samples were tested for:

— Protein
— Fat
— Carbohydrates
— Calcium
— Calories
— Vitamin A
— Vitamin C
— Vitamin B12
— Fatty acids including DHA
— Arsenic
— Cadmium
— Lead
— Mercury

A few days later, the results were in. Lactation Lab mailed each woman a PDF of her results (screenshots of the PDFs are below), and followed up with an email giving specific dietary recommendations for each woman.

What the lab found

Surprisingly, the lab found that each of these healthy moms had less-than-optimal levels of nutrition in their milk, though the results varied from woman to woman.

Though some people had been telling Becky that her milk had little to no nutritional value for her toddler, her milk was right on target in terms of fat and protein, and was even a little more caloric than average. Hmph, declining nutritional value, go suck it.

Becky’s milk was also very low in the toxins: arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury.

On the other hand, she was a little low in calcium, iron, and Vitamin A, as well as more seriously low in DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid that’s crucial to infant development.

For her part, Sabrina’s milk had about the right amount of fat, carbohydrates, protein, and calories. Her milk’s levels of iron and Vitamin A were great, too, and the presence of toxins was well below the threshold of danger. But her levels of calcium, Vitamin C, and DHA weren’t quite on target.

Finally, Whitney, whose dairy-farmer husband predicted would have low-quality milk because she produces so much and on the farm the cows who make the most milk usually don’t make the best, was actually making milk with an almost ideal number of calories.

The protein and carbohydrate content of her milk was also above average, as was her DHA, which was low in both Sabrina and Becky’s milk. But Whitney’s milk was quite low in fat, calcium, and Vitamin C, and moderately low in Vitamin B-12.

How the moms felt

Each of the moms was dismayed to hear that her milk didn’t have optimal levels of everything.

“I knew I wasn’t great at self-care, but didn’t think it was as off as it was,” said Becky.

Sabrina, who eats a lot of dairy and who takes a nightly vitamin, was surprised that the levels of calcium, Vitamin C and Vitamin B12 were not optimal in her milk. In addition, “I am currently (and always) borderline anemic and have to be careful to always eat red meat at least once a week. Yet my iron levels are just fine in my milk.”

And Whitney was thrown for a loop by her results. “I stressed out because so many of my levels were low. It made me feel like I have been starving poor little Rosie,” she says. “I try to eat really healthy and I take vitamins so it is a little surprising that my milk was lacking in so many things. Definitely eye-opening. I’m sure some of my anxiety with the results are because I’m newly postpartum and sleep-deprived.”

Lactation Lab founder (and UCLA physician) Stephanie Canale says that while her service is still new, so far she’s found “very few women” who when tested couldn’t use “a tweak or two.”

“For some, just a little extra B12 or iron [is what they need,” she said.

The moms did like that Canale emailed specific dietary recommendations to go with the results. All three women were told to increase their daily calcium intake by 500 mg. Becky was additionally instructed to eat more leafy greens, colorful vegetables, and meat, and take DHA, Vitamin C, and iron supplements. Sabrina was tasked with taking in 500 more milligrams of calcium daily, as well as taking DHA, Vitamin C, and Vitamin B12 supplements, and Whitney heard that she should supplement her Vitamin B12 and Vitamin C, as well as eating more orange vegetables, eggs, and orange juice.

The women have been following these instructions as much as they’re able:

“I’m trying to be better at taking my vitamins, this was a good reminder,” says Becky. “I’d say I’ve gone from never to 2-3 days a week. Slightly less tired! Oh, and I’m making more of an effort to eat veggies. Mostly his leftovers, but hey… it’s a start!”

Prenatal-vitamins

Sabrina said, “I’ve started taking DHA and vitamin B in addition to my prenatal and I swear I feel less tired. I also feel like I can take it easy on the calories since she said my milk is so calorically dense and high in fat.”

Whitney, who was possibly the most affected by the findings, wishes she had data from other women to compare her numbers against: “It would be nice to know what an average number of nutrients is for each thing tested. I mean, it’s nice to know where they SHOULD BE, but it would also be nice to know what average is. I was so stressed out seeing my results, maybe knowing that other moms don’t test perfect the first time would be comforting to other moms not getting awesome results with their first go-round.”

All agreed, though, that at $ 170-$ 400, the Lactation Lab service would have been out of their price range if they’d had to pay for the tests.

For her part, Canale says she hopes the information her lab is turning up will encourage women to breastfeed for as long as possible.

“I just saw a little one today for a follow up that I met about 3 weeks ago. Basically mom was being told by her pediatrician to supplement with formula. Long story short, but we tested her milk and the calorie count was higher than that of the average formula so I asked to meet with mom and baby in my office. I watched her feed him and he just looked like he was in so much pain…. reflux! We started changing positions, [and keeping him] upright after feeds and actually started him on Zantac. Today he gained more than a lb in one week!”

“I am hoping that at the very minimum we can help a few mothers like this not be discouraged — sometimes there may actually be other issues that are causing babies to not gain weight appropriately and that formula is not always the answer.”

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Mom’s depression can affect kid’s IQ, study says

by

Claudia Boyd-Barrett

posted in Parenting

Here’s another reason to seek help if you think you’re suffering from depression: A new study suggests being depressed could hinder your child’s brain development.

Researchers with the University of California San Diego School of Medicine studied almost 900 Chilean women and their children. Every five years, between ages 1 and 16, the researchers spent time observing the mothers, watching how affectionate and responsive they were to their children, and surveyed whether the moms provided age-appropriate learning materials such as toys and books to their kids.

The researchers also assessed the children’s verbal IQ, and screened the moms for symptoms of depression.

On average, children whose moms were severely depressed scored lower on the IQ tests than children whose moms weren’t depressed. The difference wasn’t huge – about half an IQ point – but lead author Patricia East said that’s enough to create a meaningful disparity in children’s verbal skills and vocabulary.

“Our study results show the long term consequences that a child can experience due to chronic maternal depression,” she said in a statement.

depressed-mom-with-baby 

The findings were published in the journal Child Development.

About 20 percent of the women who began the study depressed remained so for a long time, the study found.

The study wasn’t a controlled experiment and doesn’t prove maternal depression impacts children’s IQ levels, only that the two may be associated. Authors tried to select moms with similar backgrounds and circumstances, however the women may not be representative of women in the U.S. Most of the moms in the study had limited education and did not work outside the home, East said.

An estimated 1 in 10 mothers in the U.S. develop postpartum depression. The good news is, it’s very treatable. Treatment can not only help you feel better, but also help you take better care of your baby. Take this postpartum depression quiz to see if you are at risk.

Have you or someone you know struggled with depression? Tell us about the experience.

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Pregnant moms and their offspring should limit added sugars in their diets to protect childhood cognition

A new study has determined that poorer childhood cognition occurred, particularly in memory and learning, when pregnant women or their offspring consumed greater quantities of sugar. Substituting diet soda for sugar-sweetened versions during pregnancy also appeared to have negative effects. However, children’s fruit consumption had beneficial effects and was associated with higher cognitive scores.
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Here’s why #AgingLikeAPresident is becoming the next big hashtag for moms

by

Becky Vieira

posted in Parenting

We all age. Some of us are just doing it faster than others. The physical signs of it appear more quickly and pronounced due to exhaustion and stress. This is often the case with mothers. 

Mothers age very, very quickly.

It’s become common knowledge that those who’ve held the office of President of the United States of America are among what appears to be the most rapid agers. Countless photo essays have compiled before and after images former presidents. And they are indeed drastically different.

Pop culture has adopted the term “aging like a president” to define this phenomenon. You begin a journey filled with exuberance and a glow of excitement. But, over time, it wears you down. Sleepless nights. Worry. Fear and stress, everything begins to show on your face.

Mom is aging like a president in comparison photos

I say that’s something to be proud of. A badge of honor, showing the world what we’re made of and have endured. And for those of us moms who have been aging this way since our kids were born, I say we wear it with pride. 

I look different since my son was born. Older, perhaps. Definitely more tired. But I think there is a glow of love and happiness that wasn’t there before. I love it.

I’ll admit, the rapid disintegration of my youth is like nothing I’ve ever witnessed. Sometimes I curse the new wrinkles on my face, or the bags under my eyes. Then I remember how I earned them. And I smile my mom-smile — the one that now has extra crinkles around the eyes.

It’s time to embrace it. I’m claiming the hashtag #AgingLikeAPresident for all moms. Forget #momlife, this says it all. 

I’ve started using the hashtag on my mom life Instagram account, and others have been embracing it. And sharing their own photos and stories.

“I keep my coffee cup on a high shelf. I was trying to use the bathroom and I heard, “uh oh! Uh oh!” My son apparently can reach the shelf now. The first time, ever, and I’m in another room. He spilled it all over himself, the couch, rug, across the house. Thankfully my coffee is never hot. And that’s just one example of why I’ve aged 10 years in the last 18 months. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.” — Melissa Robles

Mom with one kid and mom after two kids

“In this moment, every wrinkle, gray hair and emotional scar feels like it’s worth it. These little guys depend on me and I don’t want to let them down.” —Marilu Livermore

Mom when pregnant compared to mom after children

“The before picture was a few hours before labor started, so I thought I looked awfully exhausted when that picture was taken. Now, with a 17-month old son, I think I look like a supermodel on that picture!! But hey, my son can’t tell I look older; I’m still his awesome mommy!” —Natalia Jiménez

“I’ve earned these bags under my eyes, every wrinkle on my face and gray hair on my head being a new mother!” —Toni Paolillo

“Before” me had no idea what lay ahead, complicated labour, emergency c section, a tiny 5lb 7 baby with reflux, tongue tie and trouble breastfeeding. Followed by postnatal depression. And even though all that may have #agedmelikeapresident “after” me had never felt so loved in my life. —Rhiannon Connon

Show us what you’ve earned, moms. We can’t wait to see how hard you’ve all worked to be officially #AgingLikeAPresident.

For more mom moments, follow me on Instagram at Witty Otter.

What do you think? Has parenthood prematurely aged you?

Images by Becky Vieira

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These Women Are on a Mission to Change How Millennial Moms of Color Are Perceived by Brands

When Ghanaian publicity pros Simona Noce and Nikki Osei met on social media, it forged a purposeful partnership and mission to increase the representation of millennial moms of color in the marketing industry. Through this connection, DistrictMotherhued was born.

“We initially planned to throw one event for all DMV (DC, MD, VA) based millennials moms,” said co-founder Osei. “Then we assessed local mom groups and noticed that black, millennial moms weren’t represented. We screened social media, post-event imagery and there was a glaring observation. I get it; you create for your demographic and most groups in DC, MD, VA wasn’t checking for us but there weren’t any brown faces. I’m not saying black moms were intentionally overlooked, but we weren’t kept in mind. So our inaugural event, “The Mom Loft” evolved from just a party for millennial moms of color to a full-fledged organization.”

(Courtesy of District MotherHued: Huetiful Thanksgiving)

BE: Since launching DistrictMotherhued in 2016, describe the work that you are most proud of?

We encourage and champion mompreneurs, and regularly highlight our moms’ initiatives, celebrate their successes and promote their businesses. Through District Motherhued, many of our moms have secured TV spot and speaking engagements and introduced their products to larger audiences resulting in increased revenue. District Motherhued is about more than just wine night and playdates; we provide opportunities and resources and position our #DMVMomtribe for personal, professional and economic growth.

We’re also really proud of our #DMforHarvey give back! After viewing the devastation in Houston due to Hurricane Harvey and seeing imagery of mothers lacking basic supplies to care for themselves and their children, we took to social media, tapped into our supportive #DMVMomTribe, and through donations we were able to raise funds to ship 10 extra large boxes of necessities collected amongst our moms to our on the ground contacts in Houston, Dallas, and the surrounding areas.

(Courtesy of District MotherHued: Huetiful Thanksgiving)

BE: Reportedly, moms control 85% of household purchases and have a spending power of $ 2.4 trillion, what should companies that are looking to target millennial moms keep in mind when marketing to this group? What do you think companies overlook (or get wrong) when marketing to this group?

When marketing to our hugely influential and widely represented demographic, brands should include us in the marketing materials! So often we receive inquiries from brands interested in collaborating with District Motherhued because they’ve observed the genuine engagement amongst our audience, but when we visit their websites and social media pages they’re completely void of all things melanin! Like, how? You see our impact, understand that we’re consumers but fail to incorporate us in marketing materials. How can I post about your amazing brand when you’ve only provided fliers featuring white moms and children using the products?

BE: You also have an upcoming Momference with panels focused on everything from mommy’s mental health to how to raise future leaders, and navigating non-traditional family structures? How did you choose these topics?

Yes! We’re so excited about The Momference™, a full-day conference geared toward magical, millennial moms of color taking place on Saturday, May 19, 2018, at the Hyatt Regency in Bethesda, Maryland. When choosing topics, we put out feelers on social media/via our newsletter to gauge topics of interest and received hundreds of responses. We couldn’t cover every topic mentioned, but the conference will address topics that were most popular.

 

The post These Women Are on a Mission to Change How Millennial Moms of Color Are Perceived by Brands appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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WATCH: Moms whose babies have heart defects may have long-term heart health risks

A new study says moms of babies with heart health issues may have a higher risk of their own heart problems.
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A mom’s support helps a child learn to handle negative emotions, but what if mom is distressed?

When children become upset, showing negative emotions or behaviors, some parents become distressed, while others are able to talk their child through the difficult situation. Studies have shown that a mothers’ reaction — positive or negative — to her child’s negative emotions can predict whether her child develops the ability to effectively regulate his emotions and behavior. A new study explores potential predictors of mothers’ supportive or non-supportive behavior during emotional challenges.
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So many moms are quitting Facebook, here’s why I won’t

by

Maggie Downs

posted in Life

Following the news that data firm Cambridge Analytica improperly harvested data from Facebook users, many people are opting to leave the platform altogether. That includes some friends of mine.

I know several people who quit Facebook over the past couple days, and I know a few dozen more actively discussing it. It makes me terribly sad.

I’m under no illusion of privacy — the moment I signed on for social media, I knew the things I post online would be up for grabs — and I’m not under the mistaken belief that Facebook the corporation actually cares about its users.

Facebook logo of white letters on a blue background

 

I also know I won’t be able to quit. And here’s why:

After my son was born, when I struggled through the murkiest depths of postpartum depression, social media was my lifeline.

I spent countless nights nursing in the dark, reaching out for human contact from the yellow rocking chair in the nursery. I found companionship from old friends who had been there and could offer words of encouragement, as well as new mom friends who were right there in the foxhole with me. With a quick scroll on my phone, I felt like I was a person who engaged with society again.

A laptop with a dark screen and an iPhone on an ugly brown sheet

It’s so easy to dismiss social media as silly or superfluous, but just knowing that life existed outside the confines of my own baby blues-tinged world — and that people out there still cared about me — was incredibly powerful.

As my child has grown, so has the way I use social media. It’s an easy way for my friends to chat, plan outings, share events, and swap photos. And don’t even get me started on the “on this day” feature, which is like flipping through a scrapbook full of memories — it has reduced me to happy tears, watching how my life has grown and changed with my boy.

From babymoon:

Screenshot of baby moon post -- the author is standing on a beach, silhouetted against a picturesque sunset

To a visit from Nana.

Screenshot of a Facebook post that shows an adorable toddler boy coloring a poster that says, "Welcome Nana!"

 

Even with all that, here’s the most meaningful part of social media for me and the reason I refuse to go.

I was open about my struggles with postpartum depression on Facebook, which lead to words of comfort and compassion that helped guide me through the deepest, darkest tunnel. But that experience also transformed me into a source of comfort for others. Now on a fairly regular basis, friends put me in touch with other new moms who are sad or suffering.

The network of women who support and encourage each other through Facebook — even when they are veritable strangers — is remarkable. I can’t quit that.

Tip: If you do want to quit Facebook, Wired magazine has some great suggestions of substitutes for the things you might miss.

Have you thought about quitting Facebook? Did you already?

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Moms’ touching video celebrates World Down Syndrome Day

by

Carolyn Robertson

posted in Parenting

Today, March 21, is World Down Syndrome Day, a day dedicated to raising public awareness and encouraging advocacy for the rights, inclusion and well being of people of all ages with Down syndrome.

To mark and celebrate World Down Syndrome Day this year, a group of moms in the UK created a carpool karaoke-style lip sync and Makaton signing video that makes a very simple, very powerful point: When it comes to their children, they wouldn’t change a thing.

“Introducing 50 ordinary mums and 50 ordinary 4-year-olds with just one tiny connection: One extra chromosome,” begins the video, which is set to Christina Perri’s hit song, A Thousand Years.

You don’t want to miss this one:

The video, released earlier this month to coincide with World Down Syndrome Day, has been making waves across the internet. Even the king of carpool karaoke, late night host James Corden, has taken notice, Tweeting, “This is the most beautiful Carpool Karaoke. It made me cry. #wouldntchangeathing x”

He’s not the only one! I definitely shed a tear or two the first time I saw this video, but I also watched it with the hugest smile. The love in these families is so evident. It’s pure joy.

This project so beautifully illustrates the fact that there are common threads woven throughout every story of motherhood, the strongest of which is the unbreakable bond between a mom and her child.

Visit the World Down Syndrome Day web site to learn more about this important day, which has been officially observed by the United Nations since 2012. BabyCenter also has resources and community boards that provide information and support for the families of children with Down syndrome.

Image via ThinkStock

 

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Pregnant women and new moms still hesitant to introduce peanut products

In January 2017 guidelines were released urging parents to begin early introduction of peanut-containing foods to reduce the risk of peanut allergy. A new study shows those who are aware of the guidelines are still hesitant to put them into place and not everyone has heard of them.
Infant and Preschool Learning News — ScienceDaily

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Preemies’ dads more stressed than moms after NICU

For the first time, scientists have measured the stress levels of fathers of premature babies during the tense transition between the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and home and discovered fathers are more stressed than moms, according to a new study.
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A Forte for Fashion: Matt Forte and Danielle Forte’s 828 Clothing Offers Comfy Styles for Moms and Kids

Danielle Forte had a mission: She wanted women to feel beautiful in all stages of motherhood. But the clothing she saw in stores didn’t allow for pregnant or nursing women or those in the throes of motherhood to feel both confident and comfortable, nor did the pieces fit her personal style. That’s when, with the encouragement of her husband, former NFL running back, Matt Forte, she decided to shake up the maternity wear scene by creating a collection aimed to redefine maternity fashion by showing that personal style doesn’t have to be compromised.

It started out in 2015 as Danielle Forte Collections but soon transitioned into 828 Clothing, inspired by the Romans 8:28 Bible verse, and carrying versatile styles, designed by Danielle with the modern mother in mind.

“The premise of the brand is to have moms feel confident. As a mom, most days you’re tired or don’t feel cute but this brand was made to make the whole thing easier,” she said. “I’ve lived through all these stages of motherhood, from maternity to nursing, and I wanted to take my experiences and set them into my clothes.”

For Matt, watching Danielle go through all the different stages of motherhood with their two children, Nahla and Matt, he said he wanted a brand that “encourages and enables mothers to retain their style identity during and following their pregnancy.” And he stressed that this is the foundation of 828 Clothing.

“What women wear post-baby can be a touchy subject; they don’t feel like themselves in clothes, but these clothes empower and build that confidence post-baby, and you can get back to yourself and how you felt before,” he said.

The DeDe Dress from the 828 Clothing collection. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte)

Some of the fabrics used include modal, French-terry cotton, and spandex, materials that Danielle says are not just comfortable, but easy to clean and move around in.

In addition to lightweight maternity dresses, the collection offers unique maternity wear with design details such as hidden zippers along the breast line on a range of tops, and dresses that are “feed friendly.” The collection also includes tank tops, T-shirts, pants, jackets, and cardigans as well as rompers that can transition from day to night.

The Dolo Jumper from the 828 Clothing collection. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte) 

In November, the brand expanded to 828 Baby, offering children’s clothing with artistic designs and witty sayings. As the duo created concepts and finalized designs for the women’s line, Matt had the idea to create clothing for babies and kids.

The introductory collection, titled “Galaxy Journeys,” was inspired by the Hidden Figures film. It showcases functional and stylish baby clothes in celestial prints, including cosmic clouds, galaxies, and constellations, and signature onesies featuring tongue-in-cheek quotes created by Matt.

The duo described the kids clothing launch as a natural progression for their brand. They are currently working on another collection, “Safari Jungle” due out in spring 2018.

Galaxy-print leggings for kids from the 828 Kids collection. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte)

Right now the line is in e-commerce with heavy social media branding, something Danielle said was the biggest key they had to figure out while launching the collection. In the near future she is considering shopping the collection to boutiques and to major retailers down the line.

The Nicole top from 828 Clothing. (Image: Danielle and Matt Forte)

One lesson Danielle has learned throughout the process of conceptualizing and launching a business is that you get what you put into it.

“Do your due diligence,” she advises budding entrepreneurs. “Make sure you go through your business plan and make it very detailed. Know your customer because if you don’t know them, you won’t know the right decisions to make with your product.”

She also stressed having a good team. “Doing it by yourself is stressful enough. Have people around you that are invested.”

Matt advised that entrepreneurs should not be afraid to fail, a transferable skill he applied from the field to the drawing board.

“On the field, you fail daily but the thing is how you respond. There’s a lot of life lessons from football, mainly if it doesn’t work out the first time keep going back to it,” he said. “Through the failure process you learn what not to do and how to perfect your craft. Don’t let it discourage you.”

The former running back, who played for the Chicago Bears and New York Jets, announced his retirement from football on Feb. 28, 2018, after 10 years. He noted that 828 Clothing will be one of his main focuses moving forward. He plans to remain involved as a consultant and creative alongside his wife, while also focusing heavily on his charity, What’s Your Forte Foundation.

828 Clothing and 828 Baby are both available online at www.828Clothing.com.

The post A Forte for Fashion: Matt Forte and Danielle Forte’s 828 Clothing Offers Comfy Styles for Moms and Kids appeared first on Black Enterprise.

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It Takes a Village: How the U.S. Can Lift Up Single Moms

I just googled “Single Parent Awareness Month” because I didn’t know if there even was one, although for six years I have raised my daughter as a single parent. This is typical; single parents don’t have much time to think about themselves. It turns out there is a Single Parent Awareness Month. As of today, we’re in it. 

Vesty2 / Creative Commons

My partner died when my daughter was three. I have raised her in a town where I have no relatives, no nanny and no financial assistance from life insurance, child support or alimony. 

What I do have are friends. I am raising my daughter with the help of a village, and I absolutely need to be. Ariel picked her up from school every Monday for a year. Bjorn lets her hang out with his girls every Thursday. When my daughter was very little and sick, I couldn’t leave her at night to pick up Pedialyte or children’s Tylenol, so I’d call my friend Dave and he would drop them off for me. Joe and his sons shovel my sidewalk every time it snows. If I am running a little late, I have neighbors who will pick her up from school; in the mornings when I’m rushing to work I have neighbors who will walk her to school.

According to the 2016 U.S. Census, there are around 12 million single parent families in the U.S., and a quarter of all U.S. households are headed by single mothers. It has been more than two decades since the sitcom Murphy Brown depicted the female journalist choosing to parent alone, causing a cultural stir and helping to widen notions of family. Today, 25 percent of never-married women in their 40’s are following her lead, and she’s coming back to the small screen. 

But single mothers still face significant challenges managing childcare and work. Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook CEO and author of the book Lean In, admitted to the steep difficulties of single parenting after her husband passed away from a heart attack in 2015. “Some people felt that I didn’t spend enough time writing about the difficulties women face when they have an unsupportive partner or no partner at all,” she wrote in a Facebook post on the anniversary of her husband’s death. “They were right.” This new awareness has led her to advocate for family leave and childcare benefits for single, working mothers.

While our definitions of families are shifting, policies to take care of families have not kept pace with the change. Women, married or not, mothers or not, still make 79 cents to the man’s dollar to do the same job if they are white, 60 cents to the man’s dollar if they are black and 55 cents if they are Hispanic—and according to the Pew Research Center, single mothers earn only 60 percent of the salaries of married, working mothers, a number that represents the millions of mothers forced into part-time work in order to simultaneously care for their children. Traditional two-parent families earn an income more than three times that of households headed by a single mother, but only 42 percent of single mothers receive the child support owed to them.

These disparities—and the fact that the U.S. is the only country not to mandate paid, family leave—are why the U.S. ranks 23rd in inequality out of 30 developed nations, according to an index by the World Economic Forum. The U.S. scores particularly low on providing social safety nets that protect the most vulnerable of our society, including our children. 

Today, 57 percent of babies born to Millennial women are born to unmarried mothers, and 67 percent of these births are to college-educated Millennial women. These figures suggest that this current generation of single mothers will continue to work while raising children—which means that paid family leave, equal pay, child tax credits, full-time benefits and childcare reimbursements will become even more essential in the next decades.

The challenges of single parenting disproportionately affect lower-income women, wage workers and women of color, and these women deserve the social safety nets that will allow them and their children to succeed. But single mothers in every profession face hurdles that remain invisible to outsiders. Even with hard work, good benefits, a leadership position and a loving community, it is very difficult to parent alone and simultaneously “lean in.”

I teach full-time at a prestigious university, where I direct an academic program, but a few years ago, as I was listening to an NPR story about saving for college—while I made my daughter’s lunch, put on my makeup, scrambled her eggs and helped her find her homework—I heard a numbers breakdown and realized that we were nearly a low-income family. 

Oftentimes, childcare costs prohibitively outweigh the costs—or pay—of attending conferences, yet my absences from such conferences have significant professional fallout. Even my absence at evening workplace events, because of childcare costs or my need to re-center my daughter as her only parent, have career fallout, since these social gatherings result in new ideas, personal visibility and networking opportunities.

If you are the employer of a single mother, give her a raise. Do not take advantage of how much she needs her job—which, along with her gender, will make it far less likely for her to negotiate or job search like a person with the safety net of a spouse. If you are her manager, you may advocate for her, teach her how to negotiate or inform her of opportunities for career advancement. If possible, provide her with professional development funds to use at her discretion.

When I look back at the heart of my daughter’s childhood, I can see that it hasn’t been all struggle. I see us all crowded around our little pine table during potlucks with our friends in the neighborhood. I see myself picking up my daughter after a long day, and then staying for soup and conversation in Ariel’s cozy kitchen. I see myself learning gratitude, humility and connection in the face of so much receiving.

I see how single mothers and their children could thrive if our businesses, institutions and lawmakers learned from our communities.

Rachel Jamison Webster teaches at Northwestern University, where she Directs the Creative Writing Program. She is a 2017-18 Public Voices/Op Ed Fellow.

The post It Takes a Village: How the U.S. Can Lift Up Single Moms appeared first on Ms. Magazine Blog.

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Moms who co-sleep beyond six months may feel more depressed, judged

Moms who continue to co-sleep — by sharing either a room or bed — with their infants past six months were more likely to feel depressed, worried about their babies’ sleep and think their decisions were being criticized, according to researchers.
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Jessica Alba’s Target breastfeeding selfie is for all moms

by

Carolyn Robertson

posted in Parenting

Finally, a celebrity “mom moment” we can all relate to.

Earlier this week, Jessica Alba shared a selfie on her Instagram stories that was all too familiar to moms everywhere. The post shows the new mom-of-three nursing her one-month-old son Hayes, drawing particular attention to her “tired eyes” and the fact that she’s breastfeeding in a Target dressing room. (Click here to see it!)

There is so much to love about Jessica’s post, I hardly know where to start.

How about the fact that The Honest Company co-founder, also mom to daughters Honor, 9, and Haven, 6, is shopping at Target, which is basically a second home for moms. The closest Target to me is an hour and a half drive away, but it’s still worth the trip. I grab a coffee and a shopping cart and two hours later I find myself at the checkout with twice as many things as I’d planned on buying. Every. Single. Time.

Jessica Alba and daughters

I also appreciate that she’s turned the changing room into her own personal nursing station. I’m sure most breastfeeding moms have done the exact same from time to time.

And then there are the “tired eyes,” noted with a pointing arrow and big letters. With three children, including a newborn, in the house, I’d say Jessica has earned the right to have tired eyes. I just like that she’s keeping it real.

Photos like this go a long way to normalize not just breastfeeding, but the day to day of motherhood in general. It’s not often glamorous, but knowing that A-list mamas like Jessica Alba are also taking exhausted nursing breaks while running errands for the family is somehow sort of comforting, isn’t it?

I guess it just goes to show that it doesn’t really matter who you are – motherhood is always a humbling experience.

Images via PR Photos

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“I Almost Died”: Serena Williams Shares Childbirth Story To Help New Moms Worldwide Gain Access To Better Healthcare

After needing multiple surgeries following the birth of her daughter, Serena is raising awareness to help save the lives of other women giving birth around the world.
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Get your moms’ group bingo card right here

by

Maggie Downs

posted in Life

Ah, moms’ groups on Facebook. We know them, we love them, we couldn’t survive without them. We also grit our teeth at them, screenshot some of the comments and show our other friends, because WHAAAT??

I belong to a few different Facebook-based moms’ groups, and they definitely provided a lifeline when I needed one, introduced me to some terrific mamas, and led me to some great resources. I have also tossed my phone off the bed in rage, rolled my eyes, and yelled at the internet.

With all those things in mind, I used an online bingo card generator to poke fun at the groups we love to hate, (but also love to love). Enjoy.

Bingo card with funny mom group phrases

Which posts do you hate in your moms’ group? Which ones do you love?

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5 magically transforming coats for moms, dads, and kids

by

Kelly Wilbanks

posted in Products

I won a gorgeous coat for my 2-year-old that converts into a bag at my MOPS group (Mother of Preschoolers). The idea is that they can keep the bag with them when they want to take off their coats once they get warm after playing outside. The coat was made by Convertible Designs and they sold this beetle, a frog, and a ladybug. As you can see below my daughter also thought it made a great pillow.

Bug-coat-collage

Sadly I haven’t been able to find a site online that sells them, but it did get me thinking about what other ways coats could transform. Here is a list of what I found. Some are super cute, some are super practical, and some are more helpful for mom and dad.

1. The Cubcoat

One of my favorite finds is the Cubcoat. These lightweight jackets easily transform from a coat to a stuffed toy and back again. This would be a great item to have while traveling. The quality looks excellent and it’s just such a fun idea — especially if your little one is gets attached to items easily.

Cubcoat-collage

Here is a video that shows how the coat transforms:

The jacket part is always a gray hoodie, but it transforms into eight different animals. I love the attention to detail and the free ebook that can be downloaded from the website. (Cubcoats, $ 59.99)

2. Children’s Down Jacket

This jacket offers two different uses. You can cuddle your baby up with the bottom part attached – great for cold walks this winter. Once your baby is a more active walker you can detach the pouch at the bottom and still have a comfy coat. The company provides a strap so you can repurpose the pouch as a purse. I can see my little girls filling it with all sorts of “treasures.” (AliExpress, $ 31.20)

Down-jacket-sleepingbag-purse

3. Sunscreen Clothing

These lightweight superhero coats would be a great item to travel with in the summer. There are several comic book options: Captain America, Batman, Spiderman, and Superman. They are lightweight and fold into a backpack (without losing the superhero emblem). (AliExpress, $ 7.14)

coat-to-bag

4. Nina & Jack Babywearing

I love this high quality versatile coat from Nina & Jack. It can be worn as a maternity coat, a regular coat, or by adding an extra panel you can wear your baby either on your front or back. There are several detachable features: the baby-wearing insert, a collar, a hood, and a maternity insert to transform the coat based on your life stage. I also love that with the central zipper you can check on baby or breastfeed with the without taking the coat off. (Nina & Jack Babywearing, $ 230)

Baby-wearing-coats

5. RuckJack

So, this coat could be great for the dad who likes to travel light. My husband doesn’t like to take our diaper bag with him, but usually grabs just enough to get by when he goes on errands. A couple diapers, a few wipes, snacks and water. Having a lightweight coat like this would help him as he trucks the girls to Home Depot or Grandma’s. This is a high quality coat has extra pockets and a cargo bag if you need the coat and a bag too. (RuckJack, $ 99.99)

rucksack-backpack

Here is another video that explains how the Jack converts to a backpack.

Not everyone loves items that do more than one thing, but I enjoy being able to use things for more than one purpose. It makes me feel like I’m getting more value out my purchase.

What do you think? Do you prefer items that have a singular function or are multipurpose?

Photos by Tre Wilbanks, AliExpress, Jack & Nina, Cubcoats, RuckJack

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All Parents Need to Read This Mom’s Warning About an Overlooked Flu Symptom

If something doesn’t seem right with your child, head to the doctor.

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What’s eating all moms of teens? Where do I start?

by

Betsy Shaw

posted in Parenting

This morning I ran into two mom friends. I talked to each of them for nearly half an hour. Our conversations could have gone on for days. The topic? Parenting teenagers.

I came away thinking, wow, we could really use a club or support group for mothers of teens in this town. Well, maybe I’m projecting.

Motherhood starts out seeming like such a romantic idea. I’m not saying this in a “Oh my God, I hate it” kind of way, but I am saying it in a “How did I not realize this was going to be so relentlessly emotionally demanding?” kind of way.

You get pregnant and you’re the center of attention. You connect with other pregnant women, seamlessly. You talk, you laugh about your new, all-natural boob job, you lament the weight gain, the gas, the fatigue. But you know there’s a baby coming, like a prize in the bottom of the cereal box, so the conversations are generally light.

You have the baby and you’re still the center of attention. Everyone wants to visit. Everyone wants to hold that baby. Everyone wants to hear your birth story and tell you how precious and magical being a mother is. You’ve brought a child into the world. You are a courageous goddess who can do anything. Baby care is hard, but your focus is clear: Food, comfort, love–survival.

Your baby turns into a toddler who becomes the center of attention. Opportunities, real or virtual, to get together with other moms and compare milestones and struggles abound. Online groups, Mommy and Me, story hour, it’s all so new, and everything you do, you do with a sense of infinite possibility. You could live on love and pride and the joy that’s in your curious, naughty child’s eyes alone. You need nothing else.

 

You have a school kid and your social circle becomes your child’s friends’ and teammates’ parents. There’s a ton of support all around you. Moms at school drop off, moms at ballet and recreational soccer games. Your world feels bigger and wilder, maybe a little bit meaner, but can always be made to feel small and friendly again by curling up with a picture book and reading together. You have each other.

Your kid becomes a tween. Things shift. Navigating social life and activities gets tricky. It’s busy, in a good way, mostly. There’s plenty of opportunity for talking with other moms. And there’s still that illusion of control, that sense that all these things you’re doing with and for your kid will somehow guarantee they’ll grow up to be happy, safe, healthy, and maybe even academically, athletically, or artistically accomplished. Sure, social media is a bit of a worry, yet they’re still so young and pliable and, if your lucky, cuddly. You’re still steering the ship, or so you think.

And then your kid’s in high school. While you weren’t sleeping, someone turned up the speed of the earth’s rotation. Time is flying. You try so hard to keep connected with your friends but everyone is so busy. Your relationship with your husband feels more like a tag-team wrestling match than a romantic partnership. There’s a hint of desperation in the air as we all come to the same revelation that these kids we’ve spent so much time on are not ours to keep. They’re growing up and away from us with each breath they take. We are no longer their go-to security blankets or wisdom dispensers.

They have inner worlds we cannot know. They have boyfriends and girlfriends. Maybe they have no friends. They have Instagram. They’ve got grownup body parts and grownup desires yet we know, oh how we know, their brains are unfinished. They spend an absurd amount of time in their rooms. You’re not sure who you should worry about more: your kids, yourself, your job, or your marriage — if you still have one.

And all that instinctual worrying about and doing for and doting on becomes an impediment to the mother-child relationship, if you still have one. They need you, yes, but they don’t want to need you. And you want them to need you but you also need to know they can handle themselves without you.

And you see them struggle and want to snatch them up and curl them back into you, and promise to keep them safe inside your arms. You want to make their world small again, like the ones in those beautiful picture books, because that small world seemed so easy to manage. But you can’t. So while you are trying to trust them and respect their need for independence, you are grieving. And you are petrified you haven’t armed them properly against the elements they are sure to face.

And that is why, when you see another mother of a teenager, you let loose at the very first mention of “How are you?” even if you don’t know them that well. And, most often, they say, “Same here. I know exactly what you’re talking about.” And thank Goodness for that.

Photos from iStock and Betsy Shaw

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Healthy packaged snack ideas for moms with bag-lunch fatigue

by

Sabrina Garibian

posted in Products

It’s only January and I am so done packing school lunches. I often daydream of elementary school cafeterias that are like college cafeterias where my children can pick from tons of healthy and interesting, well-loved lunch options. Until that day comes I will pack lunch for my kids, whether I want to or not.

Some days lunch looks like this, full of healthy, fresh options and even homemade oatmeal raisin cookies:

healthy packed school lunch

Other days lunch is just a pile of packaged snacks like this:

To give myself a break as I near the end of my last pregnancy, I’ve been throwing some healthy packaged snacks in my kids’ lunch boxes and calling it a day. Here are my favorite healthy snack ideas:

1. Fresh, whole fruit

This one is easy because they come naturally packaged. I always have bananas, apples, clementines, and oranges on hand to throw in my kids’ lunches. Super easy, healthy, and doesn’t require me to do any work.

2. Yogurt tubes

I used to pack little containers of yogurt with a spoon, but yogurt tubes are so much easier to pack and for my children to eat.

3. Cheese sticks

My younger two children don’t care for sandwiches, so I always pack a cheese stick for them to help their tummies stay full.

4. Packs of almonds

If your child’s school is not nut-free, little packs of almonds are a perfect addition to your kid’s lunch. They are filling and fun to eat.

5. Granola bar

I am torn on this as far as calling it healthy, but when I’m in a pinch I have no problem packing a granola bar in my kid’s lunch box. The only problem is that my kids only like the chocolate ones that are a little higher in sugar.

6. Single-serve pretzel bags

My kids like something crunchy and salty to go with their cheese sticks. I love that single serve pretzel bags exist. When I’m motivated I use my reusable snack bags and fill them up at the beginning of the week with pretzels from a big bag or with a batch of air-popped popcorn.

That’s all I’ve got but I would love some more ideas!

What snacks do you put in your child’s lunch box?

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The everyday reason this mom’s breast milk turned brilliant pink

by

Melissa Willets

posted in Parenting

A mom in Australia recently discovered that her breast milk was flowing out a bright pink color. But it wasn’t tinged with blood, as one might suspect at first. Instead the explanation is far less frightening, but super interesting!

The mom, who wanted to remain anonymous, posted in the private Facebook group Breastfeeders in Australia that during the course of a day, she’d consumed a juice containing fresh beetroot, eaten a salad sandwich with beetroot, and finished the rest of a can of the vibrant, red veggie.

Beetroot contains high levels of beta carotene, which may help increase the supply of a mama’s breast milk.

Per Breastfeeders in Australia, while breastfeeding, the mom’s 16-month-old “started acting unusually, pulling at her mama’s nipple and saying ‘more, more!’  The stimulation caused some breast milk to spray out. Imagine mama’s shock when her milk was such a bright colour! She began expressing to see if her milk continued flowing pink and it did! Then she remembered… what she’d been eating and drinking!”

Breast milk turns pink after eaten beetroot

When other members of the online breastfeeding support group encouraged her to sample her breast milk, the mom discovered it was very sweet-tasting.

“Some members were concerned the milk may have been coloured due to blood – a blockage or other damage to the mama’s breast,” the group reported. “Mama was quick to confirm that it was not only her breast milk that was pink, but also her’s and her daughter’s urine!”

Beetroot can turn breast milk pink

So it seems there was no real cause for concern. In fact, beets are known to affect the color of a mom’s milk, and aren’t the only veggie that can do so. According to the Australian Breastfeeding Association, eating carrots, squash, pumpkin, leafy greens, and seaweed can also tinge breast milk with color.

The U.S. Office of Women’s Health also notes that breast milk’s color changes over time. Before your milk comes in, baby will drink colostrum, the thick and yellowish substance also referred to as “liquid gold.” During the course of a feeding session, milk also changes from a thinner, blue liquid to a thicker and whiter fluid.

Of course, if your breast milk is an odd color or consistency and you are concerned, there is no harm in talking to your doctor first before you continue to nurse your little one. In this case, the pink hue of a mom’s milk was not harmful to her tot, and simply made for a very interesting and informative topic for breastfeeding moms to discuss and consider!

Has your breast milk ever changed in color because of a food you ate?

Photos used with permission: Breastfeeders in Australia

The post The everyday reason this mom's breast milk turned brilliant pink appeared first on BabyCenter Blog.

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This brilliant “library” helps moms find the best bottles for their babies

by

Maggie Downs

posted in Life

Until I became a mom, I thought all bottles were the same. Container for liquid, put a nipple on it, boom. You’re all set, right?

Wrong.

I spent countless hours trying to figure out the right bottle for my fussy, gassy baby. After reading hundreds of reviews and buying several types of bottles my son refused, I finally found something that worked — but I lost a lot of time and money in the process.

A baby being fed a bottle

 

Tiffany Page knows that scenario well, because she lived it too. Page is the creator of my local moms’ group, Real Moms of the Coachella Valley, based in the Greater Palm Springs area, and she was also plagued by bottle problems.

As the mom of a 26-week premature child, Page never thought she would be able to breastfeed. But her baby, Henry, took to nursing right away. However, to supplement his diet, Henry also had to drink one bottle of a special, high-calorie formula each day. Even though Henry initially took the NICU bottles just fine, after about a week of nursing, he began to refuse bottles.

“He would gag, chew on the nipple, and cry,” Page said. “Mama all the way.”

She tried just about everything on the market, ending up with practically more bottles than a Babies R Us.

“Ten months, several tears and syringe feedings later, he finally took to a Tommee Tippee bottle,” Page said. “I couldn’t believe that I had spent $ 10, $ 20, and even $ 30 on one bottle, and he chooses the one we had started with.”

That left Page with a stash of more than 20 different kinds of bottles that weren’t being used — but it also inspired an idea. Page started a bottle library to help other mamas in the same boat.

The rules are very simple: The library is available to moms within the local group. The entire collection is “checked out” by a mother in need. When that mom has figured out the bottle her child needs, she passes along the collection to someone else.

It’s a brilliant idea. And unlike a library filled with books, you’ll never have a late fee with the bottle library.

“I decided that no mom should have to be this stressed, worried and out of money over something something as simple as a bottle — something that can be cleaned and sterilized and passed on,” Page said.

Could you use a bottle library?

The post This brilliant "library" helps moms find the best bottles for their babies appeared first on BabyCenter Blog.

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Perfect Gifts for the Perfect baby

9 gifts that will make new moms cry

by

Joyce Slaton

posted in Products

If there is a pregnant woman or new mom at your holiday table this year, here are the gifts that will make her mist up and hug everybody in sight.

1. Jewelry is a mom classic. This necklace, made out of recycled silver sterling, has a delicate bar that rests on your collarbones, holding a mama bird and one, two, three, or four little baby birds. (Mother Nestling Birds Necklace, $ 70-$ 79)

2. If there’s a new daughter under the tree — or in her belly — you can count on this bracelet to cue the waterworks. You may want to buy two; one for mom to wear now, one for your little girl to wear in time, the interlocking circles always symbolizing their unbreakable bond. (Mother-Daughter bracelet, $ 39.95)

3. Get an impression of those precious, tiny hands and feet as soon as you can, because you’re not going to believe how quickly they grow. This kit comes with a little stamping set that lets you put your baby’s name and birthdate in the plaster, a detail that only grows more sweet with time. (Personalized Baby Handprint & Footprint Keepsake, $ 22.95)

4. This heartrendingly sweet book is about a lonely bird who’s looking for his mother. He goes around asking all sorts of animals “Are you my mother?” but is refused time and time again, until he finds a kind and loving bear who doesn’t look like him, but loves him like a mother just the same. This story is particularly suitable for adopted children, but it will make any tenderhearted mother pull her chick closer and shed a few tears. (A Mother for Choco, $ 4.50-$ 14.30)

5. If the new mom in your life has a song she sings to her baby, this custom-made music box is a guaranteed “get me the Kleenex” gift. Have a mother-and-son or mom-and-daughter on top, choose a color, and choose a song: “You Are My Sunshine,” “Over the Rainbow,” and “What a Wonderful World” are all mom-and-baby classics. (Simplycool Custom Made Music Box, $ 54)

6. Channeling the magic of long summer days spent with your baby, this mom-and-daughter necklace set reminds both that your little one is the seed from her mother’s beautiful flower. Both the dandelion and little-fluff pendants are on beautiful, delicate silver chains. (Mother-Daughter Dandelion Necklace Set, $ 54.99)

7. Expect moms to get all choked up when reading this beautiful book filled with the simple gratitude of a child for his mother. “I love my mommy because she reads me stories,” it says, with an image of a boy and his mother curled up together in a big chair. “I love my mommy because she feeds me when I’m hungry.” And isn’t your baby so lucky? If your mom-and-baby happens to be Spanish speaking, there’s a Spanish-language edition of the book, Quiero a mi Mama Porque… (I Love My Mommy Because…, $ 6.01)

8. Motherhood moves pretty fast. And most moms want a way to keep track of the sweet everyday moments. But staring down the barrel of a baby book, with its places for paragraphs of memories and page after page of questions, can look very intimidating to a new mother who barely has time to feed herself. Instead, give her this sweet, simple book, which has space for one small thought every day. Keep it by where your baby sleeps, with a pen beside it, and she’ll find herself reflecting, remembering…and loving you for being so thoughtful. (Mom’s One Line a Day: A Five-Year Memory Book, $ 13.15)

9. Mom jewelry with a birthstone for everyone in the family is a classic, and this beautiful pendant comes with 12 different stones, so that as you add to your family, you can add new colors. Make her cry imagining the family that is to be — and wearing the family that is now. (Tree of Life Pendant, $ 15.59)

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program which allows us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

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Cool moms are flipping out over this PTA swag

There’s a hip new label in Williamsburg — and it’s called PS 84. The PTA has revamped the standard-issue logo duds in favor of brightly colored T-shirts with bold graphic prints and track suits with retro flare. Even those who aren’t affiliated with the school are taking notice. “People come up to us in different…
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5 reasons moms are all kinds of obsessed with the royal engagement

by

Melissa Willets

posted in Life

Unless you’ve been living under a breast pump, which, let’s face it, some of us are, you probably know that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have become engaged.

And if you’re like me, you stopped what you were doing the second you found out via a CNN push notification on your phone, and freaked out. Because. This. Is. Awesome. News.

Royal engagement photo

Forget about analyzing why you care so much about a royal engagement that couldn’t have less to do with your own life. Here are 5 reasons every mom from New Jersey to London is basically obsessed with the upcoming wedding between Harry and Meghan:

  1. At 36, Meghan Markle is about our age, moms! So, is it totally out of the question that maybe we could still meet a prince and become royalty? Especially since she’s American. I don’t think so! Except we’re already married. But whatever.
  2. The royal engagement equals something to obsess over other than whether our kids pooped today. As more details about how Harry proposed, and how they met, and their wedding plans emerge, we moms are offered an escape from the sometimes humdrum aspects of our day. Indeed, the design of Meghan’s engagement ring is the perfect subject to contemplate during nap time.
  3. If you’re pregnant, the couple’s May wedding could coincide with your due date. Which would be amazing. And almost as memorable as having a baby the same day Kate Middleton gives birth to her third child.
  4. The royal engagement is a good reminder for our husbands to be more romantic. Yes guys, we want cozy nights with roast chicken, too. Palace optional. But don’t forget the jewelry.
  5. Meghan’s engagement ring photos are a good reminder to get that manicure. I mean, look at the state of my nails. Horrendous.

 

The royal engagement reminds me I need a manicure

I don’t know; maybe it’s just me who can’t get enough about all things Harry and Meghan. But don’t worry, because I think I’m obsessed enough for all of us!

Are you obsessed with the royal engagement, or not so much?

Photos: Shutterstock Premier, Melissa Willets

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1960s moms drove home from the hospital with their babies in their arms

by

Betsy Shaw

posted in Parenting

When my mother was much younger, she once looked over the shoulder of her general practitioner and saw this written on her file:

“Joan is a pleasant housewife who lives in her own home with her husband.”

Today that housewife is 93. She still lives in her own home, but she outlived her husband. Now she lives with me and my husband and my two daughters. More specifically, we live with her.

Even though she’s my mom, she holds a certain mystery about her. Like how on earth could she have given birth to and raised five children in the very house where she still lives, and still be so happy and healthy and gracious and…  normal?

So I asked her a few questions:

What was it like to raise five children during the 60s?

 

IMG012

Me: How did you know you were pregnant the first time and subsequent times?

Mom: I got nauseous. And I couldn’t stand watching romantic scenes in movies. It made me feel terrible. It made me feel physically sick, but I didn’t know I was pregnant. Finally, I would go to the doctor, Doc Harwood, and Doc would invariably say, ‘Yep, you have a little passenger on board.’

Me: What did you do then?

Mom: I guess I went to see Doc Harwood every month, and he really never did much that I can remember. I guess he examined me. I was gaining weight. I asked him what I could to to stop gaining weight and he said, ‘try cutting down on the corn on the cob.’

Me: Did they have prenatal supplements back then? I hated those.

Mom: I will never forget the prenatal vitamins Doc Harwood gave me. They were huge, horse pills.

Me: What sort of things did pregnant women worry about back then?

Mom: I don’t remember that much about it. I do remember we were painting the room upstairs when I was pregnant with one of your sisters, and I wondered if the fumes might be bad for me. Back then you could smoke and drink. I never smoked, but I did have two Tom Collins the night one of you was born. I did worry about falling on my stomach. And, after I had babies, I was self conscious about not losing weight fast enough. Wearing maternity clothes after baby was kind of embarrassing.

Me: What did pregnant women wear?

Mom: A skirt and an over blouse, like a smock. You could also get skirts with a hole in the front, rather than having to buy a huge skirt. Then you wore an over blouse. I didn’t have to buy much. People loaned clothes to me , and I made a couple of clothing items out of calico material.


Vintage “open bump” patterns, image courtesy Free the Bump’s Kickstarter site

Me: Did you take childbirth classes or read books?

Mom: No birthing classes. My method was to just whistle through all my contractions. Nurses would pass by my door and say, “There goes that whistle.”

Me: And what about Dad? Did he take part? Your father never came in once I went into the labor room. Hospital staff would come into look at me once in while. But I was mostly alone. But you don’t feel alone because the door is open.

Me: What about pain relief?

Mom: During delivery, they wheeled you into the delivery room, and at the last possible minute when you are supposed to be “enjoying” the whole experience of birth, they put something over your nose (ether) and they knock you out and you don’t know what happened. I didn’t want them to do it when I was having you, because I has having trouble breathing,

“No, don’t do it, please don’t do it,” I said. But they did it anyway.

Me: What about breastfeeding?

Mom: I know they didn’t show me how. I was on my own. I don’t remember my friends doing it, but I got the idea that I should. I had three babies so close together, you couldn’t do both. Sally got the most, Andy got some, Nancy… I don’t remember.  I remember Aunt Cele tried to encourage me to do it in the middle of a room once, and I didn’t want to.

Me: How did you choose our names?

Mom: I just chose names I liked, or names of people I had met and thought they were nice. I liked Nancy. I knew a lot of nice Nancys.

Coming home from the hospital

Me: What was it like bringing your babies home.

Mom: I drove home with babies in my arms. We stayed in the hospital for a couple of days and then we were home alone. My mother in law hovered around a bit, but we were mostly on our own. It’s a wonder you kids ever grew up to be normal.

Me: Did you ever get the baby blues?

Mom: I remember crying when Sally was a baby and still nursing. I was crying about all the poor starving children in the world, and thinking this was a bad thing to be feeling when feeding my child.

Me:  Did you like being a stay-at-home mom? A housewife?

Mom: Not particularly. It’s just something you had to do if you were married with children.

Me: Did you feel that having kids was expected of you?

Mom: When we got married, Dad said, “Let’s get married and have lots of children, what else is there to do.”

Me: Did you ever think you would do something else with your life?

Mom: Oh yes. I wanted to save the world. That’s why I applied for a job at the U.N. after college, but when they called me for an interview I was busy traveling with my friends.

Me: Did you enjoy motherhood?

(She’s making a funny face.) It wasn’t one of my favorite things to do.” I always felt pressure to play with my kids, and I wasn’t very good at it, that was a problem. I could do it up to a point. It was great when you all got old enough for nursery school.  I spent a lot of time picking up little things, like Legos, and always wondered why I didn’t have a smaller waistline because of it.

One thing I remember enjoying was washing diapers and then hanging them out in the sun. Going to the clothesline was an excuse to go out into the sun, carefully hanging each diaper, and try to get a tan.

And we had playpens in those days. That was a nice thing. You can pop a kid in the playpen and put toys in for it to play with. But then when the baby got big enough to climb out of the play pen, it was all over.

Me: Were you ever lonely and or bored?

Mom: Yea, a little bit. Babies aren’t very interesting.

Me: Did Dad help at all?

Mom: Yes. He helped when he was here. He changed diapers, sozzled them in the toilet. He helped around the house, and vacuumed. He held babies and he put you to bed. He read to you. But I also remember sitting at the dinner table one night and telling him that he wasn’t fun anymore.

Me: Were you exhausted?

Mom: One time when I got really fat, I got desperate and went to Dr. Harrigan and he said my weight gain was because of frustration, so once a week I had to take an afternoon off for myself. Then he gave me diet pills.

Me: Did you have any help?

There was no such thing as daycare. By the time you were a toddler, there was a place to take children, and my friend Judy and I took you and David there so we could go skiing. I felt so guilty using daycare, because we weren’t working mothers.

But I never felt pressure to be a working mother. There was a group of us who had kids the same age, and none of us worked while our kids were small.

Me: Did you have playdates?

We started the “dirty Thursday club.” We would get together in the afternoon with our kids at each other’s houses and have coffee and snacks and let kids play and make a mess.

Me: I was secretly hoping dirty Thursday club involved martinis.

Have you ever asked your mom, or grandmother, what motherhood was like for her?

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French mom’s amazing comics prove some struggles are universal

by

Sara McGinnis

posted in Parenting

I don’t speak French, and artist Nathalie Jomard calls her own English skills “bad.” Nonetheless, we’re both laughing about the pains and struggles moms around the world go through.

Check out a sampling of her illustrations, which run the gamut from pregnancy woes to parenting pitfalls…

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

Nathalie Jomard

As someone who’s never been described as small-chested, I relate so hard to attempting to squish my girls into my pre-pregnancy bras for as long as possible. Naively, I refrained from investing in larger sizes because I assumed my breasts would go back to normal once I gave birth.

That last comic, yep. That was pretty much me, nearly choking to death on my super-sized, rock-hard breastfeeding boobs.

Of course, I also need a comic with a pair of deflated balloons to depict the post-weaning aftermath. Haha. (Sigh.)

What funny pregnancy or parenting moment of yours would you love to see given the comic treatment?

Images via Nathalie Jomard, whom you’re welcome to connect with on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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Review: Is A Bad Moms Christmas worth a sitter?

by

Laura Falin

posted in Life

The bad moms are back, y’all.

in A Bad Moms Christmas, Amy, Kiki, and Carla are struggling with the holiday season. They have gifts to buy, performances to attend, cookies to bake, houses to decorate. They reach a hilarious breaking point in the middle of the mall, and decide to stop with all the running about and enjoy quiet, stress-free Christmases at home.

And then their own moms show up, adding a whole new set of problems and expectations to the mix. Amy’s mom pushes her constantly to do more, Kiki’s mom has boundary issues (and a whole lot of clothing with her daughter’s face on it, which is marvelous), and Carla’s mom may just be after her money.

I loved the addition of the grandmas in this movie. Each one has her own challenges relating to her daughter, and Christine Baranski, Cheryl Hines, and Susan Sarandon all play wonderfully over-the-top mothers in their own ways.

As is often the case, the sequel isn’t quite as good as the original. Everything is a little more outrageous. The raunchy humor of the first movie worked (and I loved it, by the way — if you had a filthy sense of humor before kids, why can’t you indulge it now?), but the jokes drag on too long this time and are too far-fetched. I’m willing to suspend disbelief, but a stripper dancing at a family Christmas dinner is a little much.

The movie is rated R for good reason: there’s plenty of swearing and lewd jokes. But it hits on things we moms do experience during the holidays. We do want to make them memorable for our children. We do worry about striking the balance between upholding important traditions and wanting to sit at home in our PJs and chill. And many of us have fraught relationships with our own mothers as well…which are hard to manage over the holidays with a houseful of people.

The plot may have been predictable, but A Bad Moms Christmas had plenty of laugh-out-loud moments. It’s a solid choice if you’re out for a night with friends and want some stress-relieving laughs that come with a bit of reassurance you’re not alone in this crazy mom struggle.

Are you going to see this movie?

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Diaper bag must-haves for moms of multiples

by

Tabitha Blue

posted in Products

Every mom goes through a quintessential rite of passage: the packing of the diaper bag. When we first start out, it’s all about packing EVERYTHING that is needed, and goodness, we wouldn’t want to forget a thing!

As time goes on, we realize what is really necessary for our child and what we can leave behind, because the weight of said diaper bag is a reality. Once we begin to add multiple little ones to our brood, there’s an ever-present balance between bringing the must-haves we need and toting a bag we can actually carry.

The good news? Packing a diaper bag for multiples that doesn’t break your back is totally doable! Today I’m sharing just the must-haves that I tote around for my four kids.

The bag

Clearly the bag you choose is completely up to your own taste and style. I tend to rotate between a stylish leather diaper bag with backpack straps, making it SO convenient for carrying hands-free, and a large tote bag that I just make over into a diaper bag. What matters here is choosing something that works for you, then making it function as a diaper bag for multiples with smaller bags of essentials.

Diaper bag must haves and essentials for the mom of multiples.

About those bags of essentials…

Staying organized is key to packing for multiples without losing anything…including your sanity as well as all the little things that roll around the bottom of your bag.

In my diaper bag, I keep a zippered pouch with wipes and a few diapers. I have another pouch for snacks, because we all know hangry happens and it’s best to be prepared. Another zippered bag holds first-aid essentials like Band-Aids, sanitizing spray, pain reliever (for babies and for Mommy), sunscreen, boo-boo cream, and diaper cream.

Diaper bag must haves and essentials for the mom of multiples.

It’s also important to keep a bag with items just for Mommy, and in mine I keep some makeup and balm, chewing gum, hair ties, and bobby pins.

Double duty

Items that work fast and perform multiple tasks will be your best friend. You don’t want to pack a ton of different items when one might do. For example, a tube of the new Aquaphor Fast Relief Diaper Rash Paste is perfect for diaper rash since it relieves discomfort in just one application. It’s formulated with 40% Zinc Oxide, and it works on all my babies’ rashes.

The same goes for wipes. You’ll use these for wiping faces and noses, to clean surfaces (with just a spritz of sanitizing spray), of course for diaper changes, and even to clean up your car in a pinch!

Diaper bag must haves and essentials for the mom of multiples.Diaper bag for the mom of multiples

Extra Clothes

You know all of those “in-between” clothes; the ones you clear out your child’s drawers because they’re a little too small, but aren’t quite the right for your next little one yet? Grab a couple of these items and roll them up to live in the bottom of your bag. If you need a change of clothes these will work, and you won’t miss them from your child’s wardrobe in the meantime. Look for items that will “mostly” fit most of your kids and you’ll be all set.

Entertainment

Lastly, I add in something to keep myself and my kids busy while out. Since I always like to have my phone, notebook, and pens handy, these can all double as entertainment for little ones. Grab a small toy or two and mix them up often so that kids are always discovering something “new” to play with. For older kids, a small bag of stackable blocks can entertain for long periods of time, and little cars, crayons, and mini stuffed animals all keep little ones occupied and happy.Diaper bag for the mom of multiples

Mom Tip: Add a roll of pet waste bags in your diaper bag for smelly diapers.

As my kids continue to grow, what I carry with me changes slightly, but the basics stay the same. You’ll find you develop your own go-bag in a short period of time, and that when you’re prepared, outings are so much easier for the kids — and for you.

Have you had to pack for multiples? What else would you make sure to take with you?

Make the right choice when it comes to your baby! Loved by moms, recommended by Pediatricians. All-purpose Aquaphor Baby Healing Ointment provides protection from diaper and drool rash, as well as, relief for dry, chapped or irritated skin. Aquaphor Baby has diaper rash covered; for moderate diaper rashes use 3 in 1 Diaper Rash Cream, and for more severe diaper rash try NEW Fast Relief Diaper Rash Paste. All of our products are hypoallergenic and free of parabens, fragrances, talc and dyes. Try our products now and visit the Aquaphor Baby Website for coupons and more information.

This post is sponsored by Aquaphor. All opinions are truthful and my own.

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Teen Mom’s Kailyn Lowry and Javi Marroquin Break Down When Confronting the Death of Their Relationship

Kailyn LowryIs there hope for one of Teen Mom’s most unpredictable couples?
On Friday’s all-new episode of Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars, Kailyn Lowry and Javi Marroquin faced another…

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5 Ways Moms Should Honor Themselves

Let’s face it, motherhood is a balancing act. From getting our busy and super talkative kids prepared for school to wiping away runny noses at bedtime – moms with an “S” on their chest do it all. We have no choice. Even during the snooze button struggle – a little birdie whispers “meals need to […]

The post 5 Ways Moms Should Honor Themselves appeared first on MadameNoire.

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You’ll want to try the “Yes Half Hour” after reading this mom’s experience

by

Michelle Stein

posted in Parenting

In response to actress Jennifer Garner posting on Instagram about the “Yes Day” she had with her kids, one mom has tested out a more feasible concept: The “Yes Half Hour.”

Amy Betters-Midtvedt — a mom of five from Appleton, Wisconsin — tried out this abbreviated version with her 6-year-old son, Sam, because theoretically, the Yes Half Hour wouldn’t lead to bankruptcy, nor would it result in a Yes Day hangover like Gardner’s. It seems like the perfect compromise.

“He is most likely to get lost in the shuffle and had been begging to buy some spooky Halloween decorations,” Betters-Midtvedt told BabyCenter by email. “I said yes and watched his eyes light up. When we were shopping, I made the decision to live like Jen (clearly we’re BFFs so I call her Jen in my head…ha!) and say nothing but yes to him for the half-hour shopping trip.”

On Oct. 9, the Hiding in the Closet with Coffee blogger went for it. And she shared the results on her Facebook page, along with a photo.

As she explained in her post, Betters-Midtvedt dedicated Sam’s Yes Half Hour to shopping for Halloween decorations at Walmart — with some parameters. She had told him about their adventure before school on Monday morning to get him excited about it, and they also discussed the budget and what items would be a priority.

“He was beside himself with joy when he came out of school,” Betters-Midtvedt wrote on Facebook. “And as we pulled up to the store he asked if he could pick out a scary dinner too. I said yes. And decided I was going to say yes to whatever he wanted as we shopped as long as it was within reason. The joy in this kid the whole time we were shopping was awesome.”

She said yes to mummy hotdogs, two kinds of Doritos, Halloween-themed mini soda cans and an army guy Halloween costume. As well as: French toast gaels, strawberry cream cheese and “those annoying string spider webs that will never come out of my bushes.”

“Yes to him…my boy,” she wrote. “He was a gem the whole time and felt like a million dollars walking into the house and getting cheers from the big kids for the awesome dinner he picked out … He felt heard and proud and loved being in charge.”

Now, Betters-Midtvedt says she plans on carrying out a surprise Yes Half Hour with each of her four older kiddos. And she encourages other parents to consider giving it a try, too.

“Here’s to the YES HALF HOUR my friends,” she concluded in her Facebook post. “It can happen anywhere and any time. You don’t have to be a planner or a millionaire and I’m guessing you’ll be a little less tired afterward then our friend Jen looked to be. We can all rock the yes for a half hour and the look on our kids faces will make us feel cooler than a Hollywood mom (I’m guessing).”

I love this idea! (Although, to be completely honest, I think I’d opt for carrying out a Yes Half Hour at a dollar store instead. Because mama’s cheap.) During the crazy school/work week, sometimes I feel like all my kids hear from me is “no.”

“No, we can’t go to Chuck E. Cheese today.”

“No, you can’t have candy for a snack.”

“No, I’m not buying you a toy; all we need to get right now is milk.”

“Sorry, I can’t play a game with you right now. Mommy has to work.”

Even though it’s perfectly reasonable for me to turn down these never-ending requests, the “nos” add up quickly. And so does the mommy guilt. I do make an effort to say “yes” more often on the weekend. But still. Having one-on-one time with each of my kids for 30 minutes  — without having to actually say “yes” all day long — seems like the perfect way to make their day without breaking the bank. I’m in!

What do you think of the Yes Half Hour? Would you consider trying it with your kids?

Images used with permission from Amy Betters-Midtvedt

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9 ways partners can make a breastfeeding new mom’s life easier

by

Michelle Stein

posted in Parenting

I have a running buddy who will be welcoming his first child next month. On our runs, we’ve bonded over the cool and weird things about pregnancy from our different perspectives, and I’ve also learned his wife plans on breastfeeding their little one. Having nursed three children, I’ve fought the urge to spew unsolicited breastfeeding-related advice vomit in his direction. So instead, I’ll redirect my energy in a way that might help parents-to-be who are actually seeking advice.

Here are 9 ways new parents can help their breastfeeding partners:

1) Diaper duty: What I appreciated the most in those early breastfeeding days was my husband jumping in to take on the bulk of diaper changes when he was home. Since he couldn’t physically feed our baby with his body, it seemed like a fair arrangement that he dealt with the output while I focused on mastering the input — breastfeeding! I definitely wasn’t sad about skipping those first, tar-like poop diapers.

2) Meals: Acquire them. Whether it’s ordering a pizza, re-heating freezer meals you made ahead or cooking something yummy at home, just do it. Because chances are, that new breastfeeding mom is ravenous. (At least I was!) Her body is healing from childbirth and working overtime to produce milk, so any meals you can just sit in front of her are amazing. It’s one less thing to worry about while she’s getting used to feeding a tiny human with her body.

3) Snacks: All of them. Like I said, producing milk works up an appetite. Make sure the breastfeeding mom in your life has a stockpile of healthy snacks. Fresh fruit, granola bars, oatmeal, cheese, snack-size portions of veggies — whatever can be easily grabbed and consumed from her favorite nursing spot.

4) Make sure her water bottle is fresh and filled: I was soooo thirsty after having my babies — and that giant bottle with a straw they give you at the hospital is perfect to keep using once you’re home. New partners, help keep that thing filled with fresh ice water. It’s a little gesture that can go a long way in making breastfeeding easier for new moms. (Not to mention, staying properly hydrated is important for keeping up a nursing mama’s milk supply.)

5) Burping: Once the mama is done filling her baby up, a partner can get some snuggles in while gently patting the baby’s back to help release gas bubbles. Now Mom can eat the food you heated for her, hop in the shower, or change her lochia-saturated pad while your little one burps.

6) Baths: For us, baths were another opportunity for my husband to get in bonding time with our always-on-the-boob babies. I could spend time with my other kiddos while he was cleaning up the baby, or just enjoy a chunk of time that didn’t involve holding our newborn.

7) Wrangle older kids: Something else I appreciated my husband doing with our second and third children was playing with/taking our older kid(s) out of the house to do something fun while I focused on breastfeeding and resting. Helping my baby get an efficient latch was less stressful when our other kids weren’t going stir-crazy at home.

8) Help control the flow of visitors: This is especially important if the breastfeeding mom is feeling overwhelmed, or the mom and/or baby is struggling with feedings. I may just be a weirdo, but I was basically topless the first couple weeks of breastfeeding. (It seemed like my babies were on the boob around the clock anyway, so it was just easier that way.) A new mom might be self-conscious at first about nursing in front of friends and family, especially when her baby is trying to master this whole nursing business. If you sense she needs some privacy or is overwhelmed by a constant stream of visitors, check in and see if you can help direct the traffic flow.

9) Listen and support: Breastfeeding can be physically and emotionally exhausting, especially during those first few weeks. Listen to her worries and frustrations. Help out in any way you can. Let her know you support her, and that you’re proud of how hard she’s working to feed your child. Words of encouragement can mean so much during this huge life adjustment.

You’ve got this, partners of breastfeeding moms!

What tips would you offer to partners of breastfeeding moms? What did your partner do to support breastfeeding?

Images by iStock, Shutterstock

The post 9 ways partners can make a breastfeeding new mom's life easier appeared first on BabyCenter Blog.

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7 offbeat housecleaning hacks for desperate moms

by

Whitney Barthel

posted in Life

As I lifted my vacuum off the ground and onto my bed, I thought, this has to be an all-time motherhood low for me.

cleaning hack

Let me back up a little bit. Yesterday, before needing to go pick Frankie and Daniel up from school, I was blessed with a few moments to shower as Charlie napped and George accepted my bribery in front of the boob tube. It was glorious.

It wasn’t until I was already out of the shower that I realized my missing shadow (George) suspiciously did not end up running into the bathroom after five seconds, like normal.

I poked my head into my room where George was watching SpongeBob. Cornflakes were everywhere. In the middle of my bed, which had been torn to smithereens due to a certain 3-year-old’s desire to test the force of gravity, was said 3-year-old and a whole upturned box of cereal.

Why do all bad things happen on my bed?

I tried not to blow. Not because I wasn’t angry, but because I literally did not have time. I had to leave for town to pick up the big boys in 20 minutes. And although I was at least clean and body-odor free, I was a naked mess.

So, I left it and the memory literally went poof out of my brain. That is, until this exhausted 5-months-pregnant momma dragged her butt into her room for some pajamas later that evening. Sonofab*tch. Cornflakes everywhere.

I looked around, what are my options? I don’t have a clean pair of sheets for this size of bed. And, even if I did, I am way too tired to fight linens right now. Then, I saw it. Leaning against the wall was my hard flooring vacuum. I picked it up, went to town, and never looked back.

It worked. Not one flake of sugar-coated corn escaped my suction-y wrath.

You know, I kind of came up with a hack. It might be a little gross and offbeat, but it totally worked. Here are some other quirky hacks (borrowed from some of our awesome BabyCenter members) for desperate moms, like me.

Cleaning hacks for desperate moms

  1. For cleaning ceiling fan blades, use a pillow case. Put the blade in the pillow case and slide dust off into the case. Shake pillow case out outside and throw it in the washer.
  2. To dust popcorn ceilings, use a paint roller!
  3. Stick a maxi pad on the end of a broom to dust cobwebs out of ceiling corners.cleaning hack
  4. For carpet stains not even a professional can get out, spray a mixture of half ammonia, half hot water onto stain, lay a light colored rag over stain, iron over rag to transfer stain from carpet to rag. WARNING: Make sure to do this with windows open and no pets or children around. Also, consider using protective gear (gloves and goggles). The mom who shared this tip writes, “This hack works! And, is well worth the burning eyes. Just don’t keep your face directly over the iron or you’ll be blasted with ammonia steam.”
  5. If you ignore the cleaning long enough, someone else will do it. Wait, that only works when men do it.
  6. Use a dryer sheet to dust furniture and floor boards. It wipes it up super-easy and, while not scientifically proven, prevents dust from collecting longer.
  7. For crumbs left on the bed by naughty kids and husbands, lift vacuum off the floor and go to town. WARNING: Make sure vacuum is on a low-suction setting to avoid that horrible noise of fabric being sucked in. Also, try not to think about all the filthy dirtiness the vacuum has probably previously encountered in its lifetime.

And while these hacks might not be all that fancy, hopefully you find them helpful! I know there are a few I will be trying immediately.

What is your favorite desperate-momma hack?

Images by iStock

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NFL mothers have sent an open letter to President Trump, defending their sons and pleading for him to “put a stop to the divisive language” he’s been using against them. “[We] believe in promoting a positive image of professional football players as athletes and young men of character,” reads the letter, which was sent by…
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Teen Mom’s Amber Portwood and Boyfriend Andrew Glennon Make Their Red Carpet Debut at MTV VMAs

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Meghan King Edmonds Reveals Her Beauty Advice for New Moms: Watch

She doesn't just wake up like that! The Real Housewives of Orange County star Meghan King Edmonds reveals to Us Weekly the best beauty advice she’s ever received, the makeup products she won’t leave home without, and her best beauty tips for new moms. Listen to what Edmonds, 32, had to say in our video series “Celebrity Beauty Secrets.” Watch the video above!

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Surviving Hurricane Harvey, with kids: How these 3 moms are doing it

by

Laura Falin

posted in Life

I have a hard time wrapping my brain around what’s happening with Hurricane Harvey.

As I write this, Hurricane Harvey has dumped 49.2 inches of total rainfall, and The Weather Channel says “This may end up being one of the worst flood disasters in U.S. history.” Thirty thousand people are anticipated to be without homes, and at least nine people have died. Thousands of people have been rescued so far.

As a blogger myself, I follow lots of other bloggers, including several moms who live in Houston and the surrounding areas, and who are sharing their experiences since the storm hit. And since the thing that really helps me put a face on this — or any — disaster is hearing firsthand stories from people who are there, I wanted to share them.

Paula Rollo wrote “To the moms holding it together for their kids during Hurricane Harvey” on her blog Beauty Through Imperfection a few days ago, and it hit on something I always struggle with. How much do we tell our children about disasters? She said,

“Yesterday was the first day that I’ve ever flat out lied to my kids. I never lie to them, not even in little “white” lies like “we’re out of candy.” I always shoot them straight…I lied to them and I still don’t know if it was the right thing to do.

They know it’s storming. They know there are floods, but in their little-kid minds they don’t quite grasp the reality of what is going on around us. And I don’t think I want them to just yet.”

I can completely relate. Who among us really knows what to tell our kids? Or how much they can handle? I never do.

photo courtesy: kirstenoliphant.com

Kirsten Oliphant wrote about what her family is experiencing in Katy, Texas, and included this terrifying thought,

“When you are in the midst of a hurricane, every decision seems like a bad one. You just have to choose the best BAD choice…From the outside, decisions may not make sense. You may not get why the city didn’t evacuate or why people stayed in their homes and got trapped or went out and got trapped. Again, there are no GOOD decisions. Our mayor encouraged people to stay. Evacuation for Rita over ten years ago meant the loss of more than 100 lives. There are no easy answers.”

We like things to make sense. Those of us not in the thick of this like to think that we wouldn’t be trapped in our homes, because we would have done things differently. It gives us reassurance and a sense of control that’s much more comforting than realizing that this could happen to us, too. That sometimes there aren’t any good answers.

Stacey at The Soccer Mom Blog wrote “Hurricane Harvey: Why I Can’t Mark Myself Safe,” and shared this picture from Sunday:

photo courtesy: The Soccer Mom Blog

She says this is the hardest thing to explain to those of us not living it,

“I think what is hardest to describe to those watching from the outside is the constant state of emotion. At one moment I am in complete fear that our family will need to be evacuated from our home. When we are out of immediate danger, I am filled with worry and sadness for the friends I can’t help. And then the rest of the time, I am so overwhelmed that I sit in a stupor and stare at the endless newsfeed on local television. Watching the city that I love brought to its knees. And I can’t help because we ourselves are not out of danger.”

In the meantime, because they are moms with kids, they’re also dealing with normal kid and family problems. Kirsten says she still has bored, hungry children and messes to clean and muddy dog paws on the carpet. She’s just handling that along with knowing that at some point she and her husband may have to evacuate five kids and three large dogs, because this is what parents do.

We’re praying for you, Texas.

BabyCenter has some wonderful resources to help you talk to your children about disasters:

* -How to talk to your preschooler about disaster
* -How to help your 5-year-old understand disaster
* -How to talk to your grade-schooler about disaster

Additional photo courtesy of Shutterstock

The post Surviving Hurricane Harvey, with kids: How these 3 moms are doing it appeared first on BabyCenter Blog.

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Why special-needs moms cry so much

by

Whitney Barthel

posted in Parenting

This summer I set up a pool in the front yard to keep the boys occupied. Of course, a favorite pastime of Daniel (my 6-year-old with Down syndrome) quickly became finding ways to sneak out of the house, get completely naked, and blissfully swim in the nude before his brothers or I could interrupt his leisurely fun.

mom cry

Thankfully we have very loving and understanding neighbors. However, nothing could have prepared me (or them, I am sure) for the time Daniel decided to cut his skinny-dip short to break into the neighbor’s house.

One afternoon upon noticing Daniel was missing, I popped my head out the door and was not surprised to see the telltale pile of clothes by the pool. I calmly went out to retrieve him, but he was gone. I quickly surveyed the situation and pretty immediately noticed he was across the street pressing his body up against the neighbor’s floor-to-ceiling picture window while peeking inside.

“Daniel! DANIEL, BABY! Come here, honey!” I tried sounding calm, because, like I’ve said before, he’s a runner.

As I started to come after him, he decided to make a break for it. He went to the door directly to the right and started to jiggle the handle. “Oh, Lord. I hope they aren’t home and they locked it.” We were going straight from indecent exposure to breaking and entering.

I ran. The moment I got to the driveway our neighbor Duane opened the door, saying “Hey, buddy.”

I grabbed Daniel and apologized profusely, and Duane of course said it was no big deal. But, I couldn’t help but noticed the large smear on our neighbor’s perfectly polished window from Daniel’s wet and naked body. I was so humiliated. If I’m honest, I still kind of am.

I recently shared a couple other stories like these and was immediately contacted by a friend of mine from high school who now also has a son with special needs. We talked about the times when people see our children when they are not at their best, when they are anything other than charming and adorable.

She wrote,

“I just wanted to let you know when I see your posts I can’t help but read them and cry… It felt like for the longest time no one else understood what I was dealing with…The looks I get when my son is having a meltdown are the worst. It makes me feel like I am doing something wrong as a parent, but [deep down] I know I am doing what he needs me to.”

Her confession that I had made her cry, made me cry.

And, I know I’m not alone in this. We special-needs moms cry for everything. We cry because we are proud, because we are frustrated, because we are embarrassed, we cry because we are misunderstood, and we even cry when we are finally understood.

Special-needs mom cry

It’s to be expected. Just give us a moment and we will get our emotions under control — eventually, hopefully.

What special-needs related tears have you cried lately?

See also:
I don’t have to raise my son with Down syndrome, I get to
If I could write a letter to my pre-Down syndrome self…
If you love my child with a disability, please don’t go easy on him

 

Photos: Whitney Barthel

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5 yoga poses all moms of 4-year-olds should practice daily

by

Melissa Willets

posted in Parenting

I recently shared a peek inside my life with a 4-year-old. ICYMI, here’s a summary: Help!

What’s that you say? I don’t have any family that lives close by, my hubby works long hours, and my babysitter is rarely available? You mean, no help is on the way? Good thing I have found these 5 yoga poses, that assist me in coping with the behavior my daughter, um, has been employing of late to help me reach my personal development and character-building goals.

Here, I break down each pose, share a helpful tip to master the posture, suggest a mantra to assist you in getting the most out of the pose, and even recommend a post-workout beverage to pair with every pose. Momaste!

yoga poses for moms of 4 year olds

“Figure four, what the hell is happening right now?” pose. Use this when your child is acting totally unreasonably, and there’s literally nothing you can do to make her stop, at least that you’d be proud of.

Helpful tip: Focus on a drishti or focal point, like a toy your 4-year-old threw across the room in anger, to help with balance.

Suggested mantra: “I am not an exorcist, I am not an exorcist.”

Sip: Lemon tea spiked with whiskey.

Yoga pose for tantrums

“Tantrum protection” pose. Assume this rejuvenating posture when your 4-year-old has thrown herself on the floor, and is screaming demands at you unintelligibly, at a volume typically reserved for a home invasion.

Helpful tip: Squeeze your elbows into your ears to drown out some of the noise.

Suggested mantra: “This moment will pass. Or she’ll fall asleep.”

Sip: Anything. Literally anything you can get your hands on.

Empowering yoga poses for moms of 4 year olds

“Flying to 5” pose. This is an empowering pose that will help you visualize the day your terrifying, er, challenging tot, turns 5, and stops acting like a mafia boss intent on avenging a perceived wrong.

Helpful tip: Squeeze your shoulder blades together, as if you are pinching a Capri Sun straw between them. And suck in your Momfin top so it doesn’t hang out and distract you from the powerful benefits of this posture.

Suggested mantra: “Five is after four.”

Sip: A soothing chamomile blend of tea and Schnapps.

yoga poses for exhausted moms

Exhaustion pose. Assume this resting posture when you basically can’t move, you feel utterly deflated and defeated by a person who only recently wore diapers and drank out of a sippy cup.

Helpful tip: Relax the weight of your entire body into the floor, and play dead. Maybe then, your 4-year-old will let you be for just a beat.

Suggested mantra: “Help.”

Sip: Shots. That’s really your only hope at this point.

Yoga poses to reset after a day with a 4 year old

“Mommy reset button” pose. This posture is vital in restoring one’s sanity after a long day of attempting to figure out how on God’s earth to make a 4-year-old happy.

Helpful tip: Press your palms together overhead, and extend the weight of your head down toward an alcoholic beverage.

Suggested mantra: “Tomorrow is a new day.” Or, “Thank the Lord she’s sleeping now.”

Sip: Wine, as shown. By the bottle.

Here’s hoping these yoga poses help you reach a state of momaste, if only for a moment.

What’s your go-to mantra for coping with your child’s challenging behavior?

Photos: Melissa Willets

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The Issue With Moms Popping Placenta Pills to Treat Postpartum Depression

The birth of a baby can bring on a multitude of emotions from joy and excitement to anxiety and fear. One that you might not expect is depression. To head things off at the pass, a growing number of mothers in the United States, in efforts to prevent postpartum depression, are eating their own placentas. Many are doing so in the form of placenta pills. The practice, known as human placentophagy, is an ancient Chinese tradition believed to prevent postpartum depression. This practice is also believed to have other health benefits such as increasing breast milk production, stabilizing hormones and boosting energy levels post childbirth.

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What is Postpartum Depression?

 

According to the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 11%-20% of women will experience postpartum depression (PPD) after childbirth. The symptoms of PPD  can be debilitating for these women. Symptoms last beyond 1-2 week postdelivery. And its onset can occur anytime during the first year after baby. Symptoms can include bursts of crying out of the blue for no reason, anxiety, difficulty sleeping, feelings of hopelessness, extreme sadness or irritation, being unable to concentrate, and not feeling like you’re bonding with your baby.

 

Why the Placenta?

 

The placenta is an organ that develops in the uterus during pregnancy. It provides oxygen and nutrients to the growing baby and removes waste products from the baby’s blood. Because it’s so instrumental for a baby in utero, it’s believed to be powerful and that eating it will have health benefits for the mother too.

But you may want to hold off—science is still out to lunch on this. There are no solid scientific studies that validate the proposed health benefits and there also hasn’t been anything to say it’s a bad thing, until now. It was found that ingesting placenta pills caused one Oregon baby to be infected with Group B streptococcus, according to a new report detailing the case that was published in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Watch Nurse Alice on KTLA 5 News discuss what happened to one mom and baby duo affected by tainted placenta pills.

Safety and regulation of placenta preparation

 

Currently, no standards are established for the consumption of placentas. The practice is not regulated by the US Food and Drug Administration. Still, there are numerous companies and, what it’s termed in the community as “placenta arts specialists,” across the country that offer to encapsulate placentas. The placenta pill processing company in this particular case was not identified. However, according to the CDC, the company website said placentas are prepared by being cleaned, sliced and dehydrated at a range of 115 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit. It’s then ground up, formed into pills and stored at room temperature. The CDC hypothesized that it was likely that the placenta was not heated at a high enough temperature to kill the group B streptococcus bacteria that was found in the pills. The Association of Placenta Preparation Arts, a group for placenta preparers, issued a set of standards they believe all specialists should follow. The standards, including the temperature at which the placenta is processed, were not listed on the organization’s website, though they do recommend both food safety and blood-borne pathogens safety training for individuals who prepare the pills.

So if you or someone you know is contemplating on eating their placenta—proceed with extreme caution. Make sure you speak with your OB-GYN doctor prior to doing so to better understand the risks and to know whether it’s a safe option for you and your baby.

 

 

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5 awkward moves only breastfeeding moms know

by

Laura Falin

posted in Parenting

When I decided to breastfeed my babies, I had no idea what to expect. I took a class that went over all the different ways to hold your baby and how to help him latch on. It was helpful and encouraging and if you have access to a breastfeeding class, I recommend taking it.

But they left a few things out. I never felt like an earth goddess nursing my children. I never had these transcendent, beatific moments, looking down on my perfect treasure like a Madonna. Things hurt. They leaked and cracked and sagged and drooped.

I’d do it again, but I feel it’s my duty as a fellow mother to share with you the moves they did NOT cover in breastfeeding class, so you can practice if you, too, plan to breastfeed your baby.

nursing mom salute

1. The Nursing Mom Salute

The Nursing Mom Salute is often performed under the following circumstances: You’re at the store. You’ve just entered the checkout line when your baby begins to make the first muttering noises of a hungry child who wants to eat. But you’re almost to the front and you only need five more minutes to pay for your stuff and get out of there. Your boobs don’t care. They are ready now. Right now. You subtly slide your right arm across your chest and sort of rest your hand along your shoulder, trying to apply pressure and stop the leakage, or at the very least, hide the two rather large wet spots that are now spreading across the middle of your shirt. Congratulations, my friend — you have just performed the Nursing Mom Salute.

super soaker

2. The Supersoaker

The Supersoaker is performed in tandem with your baby. It begins with your child nursing with all her might. And then, just as she’s really settling in to eat, she gets distracted, detaches, and looks around. This leaves you with the equivalent of a reckless fire hose spraying out of your chest, soaking everything in a 20-foot radius, and requiring a lot of laundry when dinnertime is over. But then, you’re a mom now. Everything requires a lot of laundry.

tissue stuff

3. The Tween Tissue Stuff

We sisters of the small chests practiced this move frequently in our younger years; it comes in handy once again the day you arrive at work and realize you forgot to pack extra nursing pads to change out during the day. You’ll head to the ladies’ room and desperately stuff your bra in the hopes that the Kleenex will hold you over until you can pump or feed your baby. You may want to practice the Tissue Stuff at home beforehand, just to smooth out any awkward lumps and wrinkles that may arise in your chest area. If the Tissue Stuff fails, revert to move #1 until you can get home.

 

4. The Grab & Hike

So…how to put this delicately? After nursing a child, and especially after nursing more than one child, “the girls” get sad and droopy. They sag a little. They worked hard and they’re tired. But I’ve noticed that, after you put on your bra, if you take a nice, firm grip of each one and sort of hike it up in there, that works wonders. Everything sits a little higher again, and it’s like you gave yourself a mini-boob job in about 30 seconds. Seriously. Try it.

panicked partner

5. The Panicked Partner

This move can really be performed by anyone who watches your baby and is not you. It happens when you’re out of the house (for once!), and your baby decides that he will not take a bottle today, thank you. The Panicked Partner begins by looking hopeful as they try several different attempts to get said baby to try the bottle…and it quickly descends into a look of panic and helpless desperation when they realize there’s nothing else to be done. The Panicked Partner is often accompanied by pacing, repetitive texting or even calling, and pleas of “Where are you? You’re almost here, right? Like, how close to almost here? Really, really close?” which must be shouted over the wails of a suddenly stubborn baby on a hunger strike. I’ve seen several partners perform this move and it’s almost creepy how they all get the exact same expression on their faces while they wait.

breastfeeding mother

Not one of my breastfeeding moves: nursing in a meadow after picking wildflowers while perfectly dressed.

Click here to learn about World Breastfeeding Week (August 1st through 7th).

Did you have any awkward breastfeeding moments?

Images by iStock

For more kids’ activities and easy recipes, you can find Laura at Peace but not Quiet, and on Facebook and Pinterest.

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12 Inspiring Quotes From Celebrity Moms And Dads About Co-Parenting

After separating or divorcing from their partners, many celebrity moms and dads keep in mind one important thing: the happiness of their kids.

In magazine interviews and television appearances, the co-parents of Hollywood have made it clear that the experience isn’t always simple and easy, but have also stressed that it is possible to remain a loving family after a separation or divorce.

Here are 12 quotes from celebrity moms and dads about co-parenting.

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Author Inspires Other Moms To Embrace Their Bodies’ ‘Wobbles, Lumps And Bumps’

A British author, blogger and actress has encouraged other moms to love their “perfectly imperfect” bodies in an empowering Instagram post.

Giovanna Fletcher, whose books include Billy and Me and Happy Mum, Happy Baby: My Adventures In Motherhood, shared a photo on Instagram that shows her enjoying a day at the beach with her two sons, Buzz and Buddy, whom she has with McFly band member Tom Fletcher. In the caption, she wrote that she had recently seen many posts about postpartum bodies. She then gave a touching explanation about how she feels about her body after giving birth to her sons. 

”At times it does bother me how much my body has changed, but I know I don’t ever want it to stop me having fun with the boys,” she wrote. “They aren’t going to look back and think, ‘Gosh, Mum had terrible cellulite, stretch marks and wobbled a lot,’ but they would notice if I sat out of games and didn’t make the most of my time with them.”

Fletcher emphasized how much she appreciates her body because it gave her the “two most important things” in her life, inspiring other moms to embrace their flaws. 

“So thank you to you in all your wobbles, lumps and bumps,” she wrote. “To me, you are perfectly imperfect.”

In February, Fletcher stopped by AOL Build UK for an interview and spoke openly about her postpartum body. During the chat, she said that a short time after she had given birth, a woman who asked for a photo with Fletcher’s husband turned to her and said, “Oh, look. Mommy’s still got a tummy.”

Watch Fletcher’s AOL Build interview below.

Fletcher said that a few days later, the incident came to mind again.

“A few days after that I had a shower, and I stood in my dressing room ― leaky boobs, stretch marks, wobbly belly,” she said. “And I just thought, ‘How do I feel about this … my body has changed, it’s not like it was when I was 18, no surprise.’”

The author soon realized the strength of her body, especially after going through a miscarriage. She then offered the audience an important message on how society views people’s bodies.

“We scrutinize and we put it down all the time,” she said. “We’re always told, ‘She’s got cellulite, she’s too fat, she’s too thin.’ Who actually cares?”

The HuffPost Parents newsletter, So You Want To Raise A Feminist, offers the latest stories and news in progressive parenting. 

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Beyoncé, Chrissy Teigen, Reese Witherspoon, and other celebrity moms celebrate Mother’s Day

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Viral Post Highlights The Body Image Messages Girls Get From Their Moms

A Missouri mom’s Facebook post is highlighting the way mothers can have an impact on their daughters’ relationships with body image.

On May 8, Brittney Johnson posted a photo of herself trying on a swimsuit in a Target fitting room with her 4-year-old daughter Payton. 

In the caption, Johnson described the day she spent with her daughter, noting that Payton chatted with a barista at Starbucks, made sure to say “please” and “thank you” at dinner, complimented a stranger’s’ hair, high-fived the attendant at a carousel she rode and even gave her two extra ride tokens to another little girl.

At the end of the day, Johnson and her daughter went to Target, where the mom picked out some swimsuits to try on. As she tried them on, she sent photos to her friends to help make choices. During this process, she snapped the photo she shared in her Facebook post. 

“See that sweet baby girl in the corner? With half a dress on and one of the bikini tops I had picked out?” Johnson wrote. “I stopped for a second to see what she would say and when she turned to the mirror, she said ‘Wow I just love cheetah print! I think I look beautiful! Do you think I look beautiful too?!’”

At that point, the mom said she realized the impact her words and actions have on her daughter. 

“I tell her that she is beautiful every single day,” Johnson wrote. “She is kind walking through the mall, because I tell her she is kind everywhere else. She is polite at the order counter because she hears me when I’m polite to strangers everywhere. She gives compliments to people she doesn’t know because she loves how it feels when she hears them.”

Applying this realization to parenting, she added. “When we are in a dressing room, with swimsuits of all God forsaken things, there is a split moment when I have the power to say ‘wow I have really gotten fat this year’ OR ‘wow I love this coral color on me!’ And those are the words burned into my daughters brain.”

Johnson called on her fellow parents to be examples for their kids when it comes to manners, kindness and body image. 

“I am not a size zero. I never will be. I have big thighs and a huge rump and for some reason the middle of my body gets more tan than the rest?” she wrote. “But this body made a whole other body. I am strong. I am able. And I am happy. I don’t have to be beautiful like you, because I am beautiful like me.”

She added, “And as my daughter gets older, and she faces judgement and criticism, I will always remind her that the girls who look the prettiest in a two piece, or a body suit, or a freaking Snuggie, are the ones who are happy. Because that’s ALL that matters. And I want her to look at herself every single day and say ‘Oh wow! I think I look beautiful!’ because EVERY girl deserves to feel that.”

Johnson’s post received over 227,000 likes. She told HuffPost she was touched by the overwhelming response and ability to connect with fellow parents. Many people reached out to say her post inspired them to stop saying negative things about themselves. 

“It has been such a great reminder that we are all on the same team, have the same fears and ultimately want the same thing for our children ― love,” she said.

“For every mean comment that I’ve received about my body, I’ve received at least a thousand positive comments, and I have to say that gives me a little more faith in humanity than when I started,” the mom added.

Johnson said she’s become a strong proponent of self-love. “I’m a mom but I am a lot of other things too. I’m a friend and a woman, and I think that sometimes going through the motions of being a momma drowns out the time to be all of the other things too,” she told HuffPost, adding that she thinks it’s particularly important to teach young girls to love others and themselves. 

“I hope people can read my post and then look at themselves and say, ‘Here I am, and I am beautiful just the way I am.’ I hope people take away from it that our kids should know self-love and will only learn it if we take the time to teach it to them,” Johnson said.

She added, “And no matter what kind of mom you are or what size, you are beautiful and have every right to feel like you are.”

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Style – The Huffington Post
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23 Gifts And Cards For Moms Who Are Magical

There’s no question moms are magic. Only instead of pulling a rabbit from a hat, they can catch vomit in a bare, open hand.

But seriously, the best moms have an almost supernatural ability to say the right thing at the right moment, and provide comfort with their mere presence. So it’s only right that we celebrate Mother’s Day with a little pixie dust, some witchcraft and wizardry, and at least one freaking unicorn. 

Below, 21 extraordinary gifts and cards for the moms in your life who are so good it’s otherworldly. 

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

Style – The Huffington Post
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Kids Born to Opioid-Addicted Moms Seem to Fare Poorly in School

By 7th grade, 4 out of 10 failed to meet standards in at least one academic area, study finds
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News-
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‘One Million Moms’ Is Going Totally Ballistic Over This New Zales Ad

Protesters in Standing Rock are being brutalized, white supremacists are rallying in Washington, D.C., and we’re hurtling toward a climate disaster. But don’t worry, anti-gay group One Million Moms is tackling the real problems facing our nation. Namely, a jewelry commercial showing a nice lesbian couple getting married.

The moral panic-enthusiasts released a statement this week decrying Zales for the new ad that, in a montage of couples and families, includes two women in wedding dresses happily exchanging vows.

“Zales is using public airwaves to subject families to the decay of morals and values, and belittle the sanctity of marriage in an attempt to redefine marriage,” wrote One Million Moms, apparently unaware that the actual definition of marriage already includes same-sex unions.

Their statement instructs fellow bigots to travel to Zales stores and tell managers (who surely have absolutely nothing to do with the company’s advertorial decisions) that they won’t shop there due to the commercial.

There are, of course, some legitimate reasons to criticize Zales, like promoting the huge scam of diamond engagement rings in the first place. But their inclusive commercial isn’t one of them.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

Weddings – The Huffington Post
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Expectant Mom’s Flu Shot Protects 2

Infants benefit when a woman gets her influenza immunization during pregnancy, study confirms
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News-
HEALTH SPECIALS!!-

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18 Moms Describe What Giving Birth Really Feels Like

It’s basically the after-effects of Taco Bell.

Lifestyle – Esquire

SHOPPING NEWS UPDATE:


My Mom’s Breast Cancer Story Doesn’t Have a Happy Ending

When my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, it was the most terrifying moment of my life. I soon had to accept that we were never going to celebrate kicking cancer’s ass at a walkathon or share an inspirational story of survival. But I did learn that I could love being with her until the very last moment.
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MillionaireMatch.com - the best dating site for sexy, successful singles!
MillionaireMatch.com – the best dating site for sexy, successful singles!

WORKING MOMS 411: How To Manage Kids, Career and Home

WORKING MOMS 411: How To Manage Kids, Career and Home


The Working Mom''s 411 provides parents with the options, tools, and solutions that will enable them to make educated and informed choices for their family and successfully navigate the waters of the two parent working household. It''s an all-in-one resource that will rescue moms trying to put together the how-to-do-it-all puzzle. With informed insight, a healthy sense of humor, and a fresh, expert perspective, Michelle LaRowe shares time-saving tips and practical solutions to the common complications working mothers face! Here are at your fingertips current childcare options, including an assessment tool for moms to evaluate which option best suits their needs; solutions to everyday problems working parents face, from scheduling to overcoming the stigma often associated with moms who work outside the home; and practical tips on managing childcare, school activities, self care, home life, and marriage.
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Working Mom’s 411: How to Manage Kids, Career, & Home

Working Mom’s 411: How to Manage Kids, Career, & Home


The Working Mom’s 411 provides parents with the options, tools and solutions that will enable them to make educated and informed choices for their family and successfully navigate the waters of the two parent working household. It’s an all in one resource that will rescue moms trying to put together the how to do it all puzzle. With informed insight, a healthy sense of humor, and a fresh, expert perspective, Michelle LaRowe shares time saving tips and practical solutions to the common complications working mothers face Here are at your fingertips current childcare options, including an assessment tool for moms to evaluate which option best suits their needs; solutions to everyday problems working parents face from scheduling to overcoming the stigma often associated with moms who work outside the home; and practical tips on managing childcare, school activities, self care, home life and marriage.
List Price:
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Fetal DNA Test May Also Help Spot Mom’s Cancer, Study Finds

Genetic analysis reveals early malignancies in 3 pregnant women
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News-
HEALTH SPECIALS!!-

Save up to 50% at Walgreens

Baby’s Gender May Influence Mom’s Diabetes Risk

Carrying sons linked to gestational diabetes, girls to later type 2 risk, researchers say
healthfinder.gov Daily News
SPECIAL NEWS BULLETIN!-http://www.acrx.org -As millions of Americans strive to deal with the economic downturn,loss of jobs,foreclosures,high cost of gas,and the rising cost of prescription drug cost. Charles Myrick ,the President of American Consultants Rx, announced the re-release of the American Consultants Rx community service project which consist of millions of free discount prescription cards being donated to thousands of not for profits,hospitals,schools,churches,etc. in an effort to assist the uninsured,under insured,and seniors deal with the high cost of prescription drugs.-American Consultants Rx -Pharmacy Discount Network News-
HEALTH SPECIALS!!-

Save up to 50% at Walgreens

Famous Moms And Kids Who Have Starred In Movies Together

In Hollywood, tons of stars come from famous stock, but rarely do they pair up on screen together. But when they do? It’s sweet and kind of blows your mind.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

Entertainment – The Huffington Post
Entertainment News-Visit Adults Playland today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Grateful for My Mom’s Legacy this Mother’s Day

As both a mom and a daughter whose mother has passed away, Mother’s Day is always a bittersweet time for me. While I enjoy being celebrated by my son and husband, I miss my mother dearly. Each day of my life her legacy and influence live on through my parenting, family traditions, cooking, education and style. So many of our viewers reach out to me asking about the necklaces I wear on my show. What they might not know is that my mother is the inspiration behind the statement necklaces I wear each day.

I have to wear a robe, but I still like to be a jazzy judge! I inherited my love of jewelry and interesting statement necklaces from my mom. My late mother was very stylish in an understated, classy way, but she loved wearing beautiful, interesting neckpieces. A bold necklace is a great way to create a stylish focal point for any kind of outfit.

I carry on my mother’s flair for fashion by wearing some of her pieces and designing almost all of the others. And, almost every piece I have worn on the show is a one-of-a-kind creation. For me, the necklaces hold a special meaning and are more than just a fashionable piece of jewelry. My necklaces not only remind me of my mother, they are a symbol and reflection of the colorful, bold, unique woman she raised me to be. All of the words of encouragement and affirmation concerning my necklaces has inspired me to create a line of necklaces and other statement pieces.

I hope you enjoy your Mother’s Day! I’d love to hear how you celebrate your mom or keep her legacy alive limitlessly.​

This blog post is part of a series for HuffPost Gratitude, entitled ‘The Moment Gratitude Changed My Perspective.’ To see all the other posts in the series, click here.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

Style – The Huffington Post
FASHION NEWS UPDATE-Visit Shoe Deals Online today for the hottest deals online for shoes!

Grateful for My Mom’s Legacy this Mother’s Day

As both a mom and a daughter whose mother has passed away, Mother’s Day is always a bittersweet time for me. While I enjoy being celebrated by my son and husband, I miss my mother dearly. Each day of my life her legacy and influence live on through my parenting, family traditions, cooking, education and style. So many of our viewers reach out to me asking about the necklaces I wear on my show. What they might not know is that my mother is the inspiration behind the statement necklaces I wear each day.

I have to wear a robe, but I still like to be a jazzy judge! I inherited my love of jewelry and interesting statement necklaces from my mom. My late mother was very stylish in an understated, classy way, but she loved wearing beautiful, interesting neckpieces. A bold necklace is a great way to create a stylish focal point for any kind of outfit.

I carry on my mother’s flair for fashion by wearing some of her pieces and designing almost all of the others. And, almost every piece I have worn on the show is a one-of-a-kind creation. For me, the necklaces hold a special meaning and are more than just a fashionable piece of jewelry. My necklaces not only remind me of my mother, they are a symbol and reflection of the colorful, bold, unique woman she raised me to be. All of the words of encouragement and affirmation concerning my necklaces has inspired me to create a line of necklaces and other statement pieces.

I hope you enjoy your Mother’s Day! I’d love to hear how you celebrate your mom or keep her legacy alive limitlessly.​

This blog post is part of a series for HuffPost Gratitude, entitled ‘The Moment Gratitude Changed My Perspective.’ To see all the other posts in the series, click here.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

Style – The Huffington Post
FASHION NEWS UPDATE-Visit Shoe Deals Online today for the hottest deals online for shoes!

Kids Have Their Moms Take Lie Detector Tests, And Honest To God It’s Hilarious

In this Mother’s Day video from Distractify, children hook up their moms to a lie detector and ask the most uncomfortable questions.

First and foremost, the kids want to know about the drugs … and the sex.

Answer truthfully, Mom, or I swear we’ll turn this car right around.

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Peter Pan Moms: We Won’t Grow Up

We Peter Pan Moms make up the first-generation of hot moms, MILFS and cougars — congratulations and condolences to us. Take, for example, the Facebook timeline. We Peter Pan Moms update our vanity avatars more often than we floss, alternating between a youthful headshot taken from above (always from above) and a peek at our latest ink. We channel our rock star within on the dance floor, at the karaoke mic and sometimes party a bit too much like it’s 1999. Make that 1989. Sun City has no idea what’s coming, but they better amp up their WiFi, add tattoo artist to their spas and start training their DJs.

Once a vanity reserved for celebrities, now the illusion of forever (lifted, rejuvenated, de-veined) young falls within reach of the masses. During their “hot mom” years, our grandmas wore modest dresses and stockings. Mom wore “mom jeans” because that’s how jeans came — high in the waist and ample in the hips. The only women in America getting routine plastic surgery lived in Beverly Hills or could afford to. As kids, we occasionally begged off of our mothers (and fathers) wardrobes, but they certainly didn’t beg off ours. Maybe — maybe — a classmate mentioned your mom as pretty, but MILF? An unthinkable moniker, and If anyone did think about it, they certainly did not celebrate it aloud. We called our friends’ parents Mr. and Mrs.; The line between parent and child, teen and adult, and those who should and should not wear mini-dresses seemed obvious. When Dirty Dancing came out, we certainly hadn’t seen our parents doing anything remotely like it at Auntie’s wedding.

I fear that Peter Pan Moms — as we joust with standards of hardbodies, wrinkle-free foreheads, full manes of no-greys (and nary-a-hair-elsewhere )– have created our own hawt purgatory, NeverNeverEVERLand. I foresee us as centenarians in NeverNeverEverLand, clenching our hot mom sashes and stilettos in arthritic joints, instead of gracefully handing them over to the next generation in exchange for Clark’s Wallabees and elastic waist pants.

Our grandmas couldn’t conceive of this NeverNeverEVER Land. Our moms fought too hard to be taken seriously to risk wearing pants that showed crack. Legs got shaved — maybe armpits — but if my crotch-height memories serve me correctly, our moms worried even less about their bikini lines than they did about the rubber swim caps suctioned to their natural salt-and-pepper hairdos. While sometimes I revel in my Peter Pan Mom rebellion of middle age, I also wonder how long I can keep it up. Instead of using our real life matriarchs as role models or adopting the Women’s Studies 101 ideals we once tormented our loved ones with around the dinner table, Peter Pan Mom desperately searches for ways to look less and less MOM.

My mom has always dressed and behaved with dignity and class (at least in public and so far as I know). She exercises for good health, not for hard abs (which neither she nor any prior generation sought, nor even found attractive). Growing up, I never heard her complain about her body, nor lament its aging. I hope that we Peter Pan Moms figure out how to marry our vanity with our aging bodies, obsess less over how our bodies look and shift our focus on to gratitude for how well they (hopefully) still work. I hope we learn to share the spotlight and know when the time comes to sit in the audience and clap when Tinkerbell publishes her first blog post. Most of all, I hope that we embrace the softness of our laps, while our Wendys Michaels and Johns still want to sit in them.
Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

‘The Holidays’ Trailer Stars Moms In All Their Stressed-Out Glory

In honor of the upcoming Holiday-season mania, the funny ladies behind What’s Up Moms have put out a new “fake trailer” video.

Inspired by Scary Mommy’s Guide to Surviving the Holidays, “The Holidays” shows a Christmas sweater-clad mom tackling all the usual holiday season madness — gift-shopping rush, full parking lots, kitchen nightmares, ungrateful kids, Christmas card disasters, and so much more.

Still, the funny trailer ends on a slightly optimistic note. “Somehow, you’ll find a way to be merry.”

Fingers crossed.

Read more on HuffPost Parents:
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20 Baby Names Headed For Major Popularity

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Comedy – The Huffington Post
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Mom’s (And Dad’s) Worst Facebook Flubs

Navigating social media has proven more than a little tricky for some moms, and the hilarity of the fails is epic. The best part is we’re all there to watch and enjoy these missteps, which are ultimately pretty harmless. We’ve scoured the Internet to find some of the best to bring a smile to your face and even make you laugh out loud.


Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Best Parenting Tweets: What Moms And Dads Said On Twitter This Week

Kids may say the darndest things, but parents tweet about them in the funniest ways. So each week, we round up the most hilarious 140-character quips from moms and dads to spread the joy. Read the latest batch below and follow @HuffPostParents on Twitter for more!

Keep clicking…

Last Week’s Best Parenting Tweets Of The Week
The 10 Toddler Commandments
11 Cringeworthy Secrets Our Kids Have Shared
Comedy – The Huffington Post
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Sandra Bullock’s Reaction To An Oscar Nod Is One That All Moms Will Definitely Understand

Being nominated for an Academy Award is, obviously, a huge honor that puts actors and actresses on a whole new level professionally. But, when you’re also a parent, Oscar doesn’t change much.

Sandra Bullock told the New York Times, in reference to her Best Actress nomination for “Gravity”:

“I don’t think it ever stops being an absolute thrill, but I do have an immediate leveler… I still have to get up and make lunch for a little person, and pray — please, dear God — that he eats something I put in his lunchbox today.”

Bullock adopted Louis Bardo Bullock in January, 2010 — just two months before winning her first Oscar for Best Actress in “The Blind Side.” Soon after, she told People about life as a mom: “You wake up, you feed, you burp, you play, you do laundry … I’m still in that stage where I’m just amazed with him and at life.”

All together now. Stars, they really are just like us.
Entertainment – The Huffington Post
Entertainment News-Visit Adults Playland today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Best Parenting Tweets: What Moms And Dads Said On Twitter This Week

Kids may say the darndest things, but parents tweet about them in the funniest ways. So each week, we round up the most hilarious 140-character quips from moms and dads to spread the joy. Click through the slideshow below to read the latest batch and follow @HuffPostParents on Twitter for more!


Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!

Best Parenting Tweets: What Moms And Dads Said On Twitter This Week

Kids may say the darndest things, but parents tweet about them in the funniest ways. So each week, we round up the most hilarious 140-character quips from moms and dads to spread the joy. Click through the slideshow below to read the latest batch and follow @HuffPostParents on Twitter for more!


Comedy – The Huffington Post
ENTERTAINMENT NEWS-Visit Mobile Playboy today for the hottest adult entertainment online!