How to help boost the bond between your partner and your kids

Dad is going to love this card we’re making for him with Cheerios and glue!

How to help boost the bond between your partner and your kids

Pointing out your partner’s good traits or behaviors in front of your kids is one powerful way to be kind, warm and affectionate, and to foster a healthy relationship—in other words, becoming a relationship "master."


Here are 6 ways to support the relationship between your partner and your kids:

1. Say thank you to your partner in front of your kids and encourage them to do the same.

  • Thanks for making this delicious dinner, Sue. Doesn’t your mom cook such good food for all of us?
  • Thanks to your mom for fixing your bike. Isn’t she so handy? She can really fix so many different things!
  • Dad is busy cleaning again. See how fast he cleaned the playroom? Thanks to him, now we really have room to run around!

2. Point out to your kids the positive traits and behaviors of your partner.

  • Wow, your mom took you to the zoo today? What a fun mom! That sure was nice of her to show you all those cool animals!
  • Doesn’t Dad do the funniest voices when he’s reading you books? He’s so great to read books with, isn’t he?
  • I see how Mom brushes your hair very gently and holds it so it doesn’t hurt. Now your hair looks shiny and smooth.
  • Look how Dad packed the whole car while we were sleeping so we could leave right away for vacation in the morning. He was really working hard last night so we could go on this trip!

3. Help your kids make cards and art projects for your partner.

  • Dad is going to love this card we’re making for him with Cheerios and glue! Let’s put it on the table so you can give it to him right when he walks in the door!
  • Mom is going to be so excited when she sees this painting of a cake we made just for her birthday! I bet she never got one of these before.
  • I know, let’s make a thank you card for those delicious hot dogs Dad grilled for us tonight. Should we use crayons or markers?
  • I can’t wait for you to give these macaroni necklaces to Mom. They are really colorful.

4. Tell your children detailed, endearing, or humorous stories about your partner’s past.

  • You know, this one time I was sick and Mom took really good care of me. She even made me a get-well present with homemade chicken soup and a surprise. Do you know what the surprise was?
  • Your dad used to be a catcher in baseball games, just like that guy in the picture in this book. He was so good at throwing that he could throw that ball so hard all the way across the whole field. And one time when he was batting I even saw him whack it over the fence!

5. Make room in your schedule for your partner to take each child out for some special one-on-one time.

  • Why don’t you take John out to the football game, just the two of you? I can stay home with our younger two.
  • If you want to just take Abby to the beach today, I will take John to Target with me.

6. Let your kids help you surprise your partner.

  • Hey, I’ve got a great idea! Let’s make Mom breakfast in bed this morning. She will love that! Do you want to help me make the pancakes? You could even bring her the tray.
  • Why don’t we wash Daddy’s car while he’s at work? He would be so surprised when he gets home! Here, you can spray the hose.

Support for your partner’s relationship with your children has far-reaching effects. You build family trust, closeness, and kindness. Drawing your attention to the good in your partner makes you appreciate them even more.

Most importantly, your children begin their lives seeing their other parent reflected in the best light—the shining one you cast on them.

In This Article

    Cars.com

    This article is sponsored by cars.com. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

    Even before you became a parent, buying a new car could be a complicated process. Throw in a car seat or two and a dash of anxiety over safety, and suddenly it can feel like a monumental task. In fact, according to a national Cars.com survey, for two-thirds of parents car seats play a significant role in the selection of their car.

    Fortunately, when it comes to the right car for a family, Cars.com has done the heavy lifting for you. (Literally!) In their 2021 Car Seat Fit Report Card, their certified child passenger safety technicians compiled Car Seat Check scores for 51 vehicles to determine which provide the safest fit for the most car seats. "Cars are an investment and parents or parents-to-be will want to find a car that can grow with their family, but that doesn't mean you need to jump into a minivan before your first child arrives," says Jenni Newman, Editor-in-Chief at Cars.com.

    We sat down with Newman to discuss the Report Card's findings and get her tips to help you make the best decision for your family's ride.

    Motherly: What are the top considerations parents or parents-to-be should look for when choosing a car that will provide the safest fit for a car seat?

    Jenni Newman: Here are a few things to consider when shopping for your next car: Is there enough space? Look for vehicles with roomier backseats, and think about the number of kids in car seats you could have at one time. Nearly half of parents' decide to buy a new car because they need to fit three in a bigger car. Remember, kids can stay in some level of car seat until they're 4 feet, 9 inches tall—for some kids, that could be when they're 12 years old. Not to mention, you will need enough room for your stroller, grocery bags, equipment for kids' activities and any other items parents and caregivers tote around.

    [You also want to ] consider how easy it is to find and use the lower Latch anchors, which are located in the outer rear seats between the back and bottom cushions. A good Latch system makes car-seat installation easier, and since you'll be using car seats for many years, anything that makes life more convenient is a big win.

    Finally, how does it feel? Once you've done your research online and have narrowed down your search, get to your local dealership for some hands-on experience. Test out the roominess, ask about kid-friendly features, bring your car seat and try to install it in the cars you're interested in. Dealers are happy to work with you and help you test all the cars and features that matter to you.

    Motherly: What are the top cars that accommodate a car seat and why?

    JN: The following cars aced our car seat fit tests thanks to their easy-to-find Latch anchors and spacious rear seats. The top cars are:

    • 2021 Audi SQ8: A two-row SUV with a twin-turbo V-8 that puts the fun into the most mundane errands.
    • 2021 Genesis GV80: This luxury SUV can be had with two or three rows — we tested a two-row version. The refined interior might have parents thinking twice about putting kids in the backseat, but don't worry, leather seats are easy to clean.
    • 2022 Hyundai Tucson Hybrid: The redesigned compact SUV now comes in a hybrid version that sips gasoline, meaning you can take those family road trips without fueling up as frequently.
    • 2021 Nissan Sentra: This compact car is small but mighty when it comes to family duty, thanks to its roomy backseat.

    cars.com

    Motherly: Which cars are best for families with 2 or more car seats?

    JN: Whether it's a sedan, SUV, pickup truck or minivan, most vehicles can handle two car seats as long as there's enough rear legroom to accommodate a rear-facing infant or convertible car seat.

    Three car seats make life more interesting. Not many cars can fit three car seats across the rear seat, but in our car seat installations, we test each car to see if it can accommodate all three of our car seats across the backseat—an infant seat, convertible seat and booster seat—and publish the results. The Volkswagen Atlas, a three-row SUV and the Cars.com 2021 Family Car of the Year, features a roomy second row that easily manages three car seats across it, and its third row is spacious enough to handle car seats or even adults.

    Motherly: What are the best ways for parents to confirm that their car seat has been installed correctly?

    JN: There are some simple steps that parents can take when installing a car seat. First, they should read the car seat owner's manual as well as their car's manual to make sure the installation is starting off correctly. The manuals may have guidance on whether a car seat can be installed in the middle rear seat, for example.

    When installing the car seat, parents should use either the car's Latch anchors or a seat belt, but not both at the same time. Using the Latch system tends to be a little easier for most parents, but if you cannot find your car's lower Latch anchors, then using a seat belt for installation is perfectly acceptable. With a seat belt installation, make sure the seat belt's retractor is in the locked position to keep the car seat securely in place. Your car's owner's manual will walk you through how to lock the retractor.

    Check your car seat install by grabbing the car seat near the belt path and giving it a tug. If it moves more than an inch in any direction, tighten the Latch strap to better secure the car seat. It's important to do this test at the belt path because if you test an infant seat, for example, at the top of the car seat, where the baby's head is, it'll seem like there's too much movement, but if you test at the belt path, you'll get a better sense of installation's snugness.

    cars.com

    Motherly: Aside from car seat fit and safety, what are some other features or technology that parents or parents-to-be should consider when shopping for their next family car?

    JN: Automakers are loading cars with tons of family-friendly features. One of my favorites is the in-vehicle vacuum in the Chrysler Pacifica minivan. I'd love one of those in my own car - and it would have been amazing to have when my kids were toddlers.

    Speaking of minivans, the Pacifica, Odyssey and the all-new Kia Carnival minivan offer an in-cabin camera system that allows parents to monitor any shenanigans in the second and third rows. The camera in the Carnival, which was named Cars.com's Best Minivan of 2021, has impressive resolution, zoom functionality and even night vision.

    Automakers are also working to combat child in-car heatstroke with a commitment to add rear-seat reminders to their vehicles by no later than the 2025 model year. GM and Nissan, for example, have systems that use an alert to remind the driver to check the backseat if the rear doors were opened at the start of a car trip. Hyundai offers its Ultrasonic Rear Occupant Alert system, which uses sensors to monitor the backseat for movement. It alerts the driver if it senses any movement.

    Whether you need a car to accommodate one child or a brood, the new Cars.com report could be the first step to getting your family on the road safely. And when in doubt about your car seat's fit, remember, you have options. "Installing car seats can be frustrating. I've been doing it as a certified child passenger safety technician for more than 10 years and have two teenage boys and there are still times when I struggle," Newman says. "Cars.com has hundreds of Car Seat Checks that can be a useful resource for parents who are installing car seats into a new or older model car. Parents should ask for help when they need it, and can find certified technicians at their local police department, fire department or hospital."

    Our Partners

    Kristen Bell and Jackie Tohn on how they’re ‘sneak teaching’ kids with their new show "Do, Re & Mi"

    The best friends created a musical animated show that's just as educational as it is entertaining

    Amazon Studios

    This episode is sponsored by Tonies. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

    Kristen Bell and Jackie Tohn have been best friends since they met as young singers and actors more than 15 years ago, and now they're collaborating on a new Amazon Original animated kids series called Do, Re & Mi. The show, which follows best birds Do, Re and Mi as they navigate the world around them while also belting out catchy tunes, is just as educational as it is entertaining.

    On the latest episode of The Motherly Podcast, Bell and Tohn talk to Motherly co-founder Liz Tenety about how they're "sneak teaching" kids with their new show and why music is such an important focal point.

    "It was basically our mission from the very beginning to 'sneak music education' into kids' lives, hands, brains, all of it," Tohn admits.

    "There's so much science and data to support that [music] helps kids, their brains grow with math, with social skills. It literally can change your neuroplasticity. You can put music of their favorite genre or timeframe on, in an Alzheimer's ward, and they will come back online for a couple minutes. I mean, it's crazy," Bell, who has two daughters of her own, adds. "You know, music can bind a lot of families together. It can bind friendships together. And it's just a show that you can feel really good about. We want to get it in front of as many kids as possible, because I don't like the fact that some kids won't have exposure to music. Their brains deserve to grow just as much as everyone else's."

    The first season of Do, Re & Mi premiered on September 17th and its creators recorded 52 different songs for the show that range from reggae and pop to country, blues and jazz.

    "That's what's so exciting about this show," Tohn gushes. "Not only are the lessons we're teaching for everyone, but every episode has a musical genre, a musical lesson and an emotional lesson. And so there really is so much to learn."

    Elsewhere in the episode, Bell tells Tenety about how she made literal toolboxes that carry different regulation tools to help her kids calm down (one is "find a song you love and sing out loud") and why having a village is crucial to surviving motherhood, especially in a pandemic, while Tohn details her special friendship not only with Bell, but with her daughters, too.

    To hear more about the show, Bell's experiences in motherhood, and her enduring friendship with Tohn, listen to The Motherly Podcast for the full interview.

    Entertainment

    12 baby registry essentials for family adventures

    Eager to get out and go? Start here

    Ashley Robertson / @ashleyrobertson

    Parenthood: It's the greatest adventure of all. From those first few outings around the block to family trips at international destinations, there are new experiences to discover around every corner. As you begin the journey, an adventurous spirit can take you far—and the best baby travel gear can help you go even farther.

    With car seats, strollers and travel systems designed to help you confidently get out and go on family adventures, Maxi-Cosi gives you the support you need to make the memories you want.

    As a mom of two, Ashley Robertson says she appreciates how Maxi-Cosi products can grow with her growing family. "For baby gear, safety and ease are always at the top of our list, but I also love how aesthetically pleasing the Maxi Cosi products are," she says. "The Pria Car Seat was our first purchase and it's been so nice to have a car seat that 'grows' with your child. It's also easy to clean—major bonus!"

    If you have big dreams for family adventures, start by exploring these 12 baby registry essentials.

    Tayla™️ XP Travel System

    Flexibility is key for successful family adventures. This reversible, adjustable, all-terrain travel system delivers great versatility. With the included Coral XP Infant Car Seat that fits securely in the nesting system, you can use this stroller from birth.


    Add to Babylist

    $849.99

    Iora Bedside Bassinet

    Great for use at home or for adventures that involve a night away, the collapsible Iora Bedside Bassinet gives your baby a comfortable, safe place to snooze. With five different height positions and three slide positions, this bassinet can fit right by your bedside. The travel bag also makes it easy to take on the go.


    Add to Babylist

    $249.99

    Kori 2-in-1 Rocker

    Made with high-quality, soft materials, the foldable Kori Rocker offers 2-in-1 action by being a rocker or stationary seat. It's easy to move around the home, so you can keep your baby comfortable wherever you go. With a slim folded profile, it's also easy to take along on adventures so your baby always has a seat of their own.


    Add to Babylist

    $119.99

    Minla 6-in-1 High Chair

    A high chair may not come to mind when you're planning ahead for family adventures. But, as the safest spot for your growing baby to eat meals, it's worth bringing along for the ride. With compact folding ability and multiple modes of use that will grow with your little one, it makes for easy cargo.


    Add to Babylist

    $219.99

    Coral XP Infant Car Seat

    With the inner carrier weighing in at just 5 lbs., this incredibly lightweight infant car seat means every outing isn't also an arm workout for you. Another feature you won't find with other infant car seats? In addition to the standard carry bar, the Coral XP can be carried with a flexible handle or cross-body strap.


    Add to Babylist

    $399.99

    Pria™️ All-in-One Convertible Car Seat

    From birth through 10 years, this is the one and only car seat you need. It works in rear-facing, forward-facing and, finally, booster mode. Comfortable and secure for every mile of the journey ahead, you can feel good about hitting the road for family fun.


    Add to Babylist

    $289.99

    Pria™️ Max All-in-One Convertible Car Seat

    Want to skip the wrestling match with car seat buckles? The brilliant Out-of-the-Way harness system and magnetic chest clip make getting your child in and out of their buckles as cinch. This fully convertible car seat is suitable for babies from 4 lbs. through big kids up to 100 lbs. With washer-and-dryer safe cushions and dishwasher safe cup holders, you don't need to stress the mess either.


    Add to Babylist

    $329.99

    Tayla Modular Lightweight Stroller

    With four reclining positions, your little ones can stay content—whether they want to lay back for a little shut-eye or sit up and take in the view. Also reversible, the seat can be turned outward or inward if you want to keep an eye on your adventure buddy. Need to pop it in the trunk or take it on the plane? The stroller easily and compactly folds shut.


    Add to Babylist
    $499.99

    Tayla Travel System

    This car seat and stroller combo is the baby travel system that will help make your travel dreams possible from Day 1. The Mico XP infant seat is quick and easy to install into the stroller or car. Skipping the car seat? The reversible stroller seat is a comfortable way to take in the scenery.


    Add to Babylist
    $699.99

    Modern Diaper Bag

    When you need to change a diaper during an outing, the last thing you'll want to do is scramble to find one. The Modern Diaper Bag will help you stay organized for brief outings or week-long family vacations. In addition to the pockets and easy-carry strap, we love the wipeable diaper changing pad, insulated diaper bag and hanging toiletry bag.


    Add to Babylist

    $129.99

    Mico XP Max Infant Car Seat

    Designed for maximum safety and comfort from the very first day, this infant car seat securely locks into the car seat base or compatible strollers. With a comfy infant pillow and luxe materials, it also feels as good for your baby as it looks to you. Not to mention the cushions are all machine washable and dryable, which is a major win for you.


    Add to Babylist
    $299.99

    Adorra™️ 5-in-1 Modular Travel System

    From carriage mode for newborn through world-view seated mode for bigger kids, this 5-in-1 children's travel system truly will help make travel possible. We appreciate the adjustable handlebar, extended canopy with UV protection and locking abilities when it's folded. Your child will appreciate the plush cushions, reclining seat and smooth ride.


    Add to Babylist
    $599.99

    Ready for some family adventures? Start by exploring Maxi-Cosi.

    This article was sponsored by Maxi-Cosi. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.


    Boost 1

    This incredibly soft comforter from Sunday Citizen is like sleeping on a cloud

    My only complaint? I've slept through my alarm twice.

    When it comes to getting a good night's sleep, there are many factors that, as a mama, are hard to control. Who's going to wet the bed at 3 am, how many times a small person is going to need a sip of water, or the volume of your partner's snoring are total wildcards.

    One thing you can control? Tricking out your bed to make it as downright cozy as possible. (And in these times, is there anywhere you want to be than your bed like 75% of the time?)

    I've always been a down comforter sort of girl, but after a week of testing the ridiculously plush and aptly named Snug Comforter from Sunday Citizen, a brand that's run by "curators of soft, seekers of chill" who "believe in comfort over everything," it's safe to say I've been converted.


    Honestly, it's no wonder. Originally designed as a better blanket for luxury hotels and engineered with textile experts to create this uniquely soft fabric, it has made my bed into the vacation I so desperately want these days.

    The comforter is made up of two layers. On one side is their signature knit "snug" fabric which out-cozies even my most beloved (bought on sale) cashmere sweater. The other, a soft quilted microfiber. Together, it creates a weighty blanket that's as soothing to be under as it is to flop face-first into at the end of an exhausting day. Or at lunch. No judgement.

    Miraculously, given the weight and construction, it stays totally breathable and hasn't left me feeling overheated even on these warm summer nights with just a fan in the window.

    Beyond being the absolute most comfortable comforter I've found, it's also answered my minimalist bed making desires. Whether you opt to use it knit or quilted side up, it cleanly pulls the room together and doesn't wrinkle or look unkempt even if you steal a quick nap on top of it.

    Also worth noting, while all that sounds super luxe and totally indulgent, the best part is, it's equally durable. It's made to be easily machine washed and come out the other side as radically soft as ever, forever, which totally helps take the sting out of the price tag.

    My only complaint? I've slept through my alarm twice.

    Here is my top pick from Sunday Citizen, along with the super-soft goods I'm coveting for future purchases.

    Woodland Snug comforter

    Sunday-Citizen-Woodland-Snug-comforter

    The bedroom anchor I've been looking for— the Snug Comforter.

    $249

    Braided Pom Pom Throw

    Because this degree of coziness needs portability, I'm totally putting the throw version on my list. It's washable, which is a must-have given my shedding dog and two spill-prone kiddos who are bound to fight over it during family movie night.

    $145

    Lumbar pillow

    sunday-citizen-lumbar-pillow

    What's a cozy bed without a pile of pillows?

    $65

    Crystal infused sleep mask

    sunday citizen sleep mask

    Promoting sleep by creating total darkness and relaxation, I've bookmarked as my go-to gift for fellow mamas.

    $40

    We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.

    Shop

    30 stylish diaper bags that don't look like diaper bags

    Is a cute, trendy diaper bag that doesn't scream, well...DIAPER BAG, too much to ask?

    Babies come with a lot of stuff. And when you're out and about, a roomy, comfy diaper bag is the place for everything you need to be prepared for whatever the day throws your way. But is a cute, trendy diaper bag that doesn't scream, well... DIAPER BAG, too much to ask? It's not, mamas.

    We've rounded up our favorite diaper bags that don't actually look like diaper bags, but instead like the cute, super stylish bags you might have carried before the days of finding crushed up puffs at the bottom of your purse.

    These diaper bags prove you can get the job done, mama—and look darn good while doing it.


    Momkindness Carry-All Tote

    momkindness-carry-all-tote

    The Momkindess Carry All Tote Trio not only holds everything you need during your travels with a brilliant 3-in-1 design that consists of a tote, organizer and removable diaper clutch (for when you just need the essentials!), it's also made from stylish and easy-to-clean glazed canvas—so you won't have to stress about the inevitable spills. And if you want to make it even more unique, check out their gorgeous woven straps that allow it to be carried as a shoulder bag or backpack.

    $140

    Dagne Dover Indi Diaper Backpack

    Dagne-dover-indi-diaper-backpack

    The Dagne Dover diaper bag is the Mary Poppins of diaper bags, with slick mesh slim pockets inside of a structured and stretchy backpack that feels like it can hold everything. Made of an easy-to-clean premium neoprene fabric (what the brand is known for), the inside is a true treasure trove of goodies, including a fold-out changing mat, zipper pouch, and even a laptop sleeve. (And if you dig the style but don't need to lug around all the things for all the people, it comes in two smaller sizes as well.)

    $195

    Fisher-Price Morgan Quilted Backpack

    fisher-price-morgan-quilted-backpack

    Four and half stars and hundreds of reviews suggest this affordable bag hits all the marks. It not only features plenty of pockets to keep everything organized, it can also keep three bottles or sippy cups cold in the insulated front pocket!

    $39.99

    Parker Clay Mari Backpack

    parker-clay-mari-backpack

    This is the diaper bag you'll use throughout your baby-slinging days, into the older years and still have it kicking around when they have kiddos. Sustainably crafted from premium Ethiopian full grain leather, Parker Clay's Mari Backpack is designed for all stages of parenthood with bottle holders, six pockets for essentials, stroller straps and a padded laptop sleeve. It's durable, made-to-last, and gets better with age. (Just like you, mama.) And if all that's not enough to steal your heart, Parker Clay's social mission might be. Their Ethiopian factories employ at-risk women, providing them a safe work environment and livable wage along with the opportunity to learn and develop new skills and advance their careers.

    $328

    Petunia Pickle Bottom Pivot

    petunia-pickle-bottom-pivot-diaper-back-pack

    This two-tone canvas bag could not be prettier. We love that it easily stands upright when set down, and that it's super functional as a diaper bag yet super stylish as an everyday purse.

    $159

    Anjie + Ash Crossbody Parent Bag

    ANJIE + ASH  Crossbody Parent Bag

    Once you get the hang of things, mama, you might find that you want to pare things down and only carry around the essentials. This crossbody bag feels more like a purse than anything else, but has ample room for the necessities: inside fits up to six diapers, wipes, a phone, wallet, snacks, and the outside has pockets for two bottles.

    $99

    Mina Baie Vegan Kinney

    mini baie vegan diaper backpack

    Keep your options open, mama. This chic bag can be worn as a crossbody, tote, or backpack. With its minimal, top-loading design, all your essentials stay easy to access, no digging required.

    $179

    TWELVElittle LOVE Diaper Tote

    Twelve-little-love-diaper-tote

    Are you off to brunch, or taking your toddlers to the zoo? No one will be the wiser, mamas. We love the quilted look, padded straps, and roomy interior.

    $139

    WSEL Bags The Jett Diaper Bag

    wsel-diaper-bag

    This one's built for the entire family. The insulated bottle pockets, safe padded laptop space and USB charging port make it the perfect accessory for daily errands while its impressive capacity and 18(!) pockets makes it perfect for week-long trips.

    $159.95

    Caraa Baby Bag 

    caara-baby-bag

    We admit it. We're totally obsessed with all things Caraa. Their chic city aesthetic is perfect for any occasion whether you're exploring Paris or (let's be more realistic) carting small people from daycare to home and back again. The Baby Bag features plenty of pockets for all the things along including an insulated exterior pocket to keep things hot or cold and can be worn backpack or cross-body style.

    $275

    State Kane Double Pocket Large

    State-kane-double-pocket-large

    State makes some of the most high-quality, go-anywhere bags on the market. While this isn't technically a diaper bag, it has all the trappings of a parent-friendly backpack. Two separate main pockets keep things organized while generous side pockets can easily accommodate bottles and sippy cups. What's more, each State Bag sold helps support American children and families in need.

    $115

    Herschel Strand Tote Sprout

    herschel-strand-sprout-tote-grey

    This bag feels like a cooler and way more modern version of what Mary Poppins would carry. It's big enough to carry everything you need for an entire day out, ideal for having when you travel by plane, but also still super stylish and cool that it won't interfere with your #OOTD. It includes a good-sized changing pad with and inspiring message.

    $99.99

    JuJuBe Be Right Back

    Jujube-be-right-back-backpack

    From day care drop off to work and back again, this mighty backpack is ready to carry anything and everything (including your laptop!). And because we've all known the horror of finding a forgotten snack in the bottom of a bag, we're big fans of the silver-ion treated interior, which resists bacteria, mold and mildew.

    $175

    7AM Soho Diaper Satchel

    7am soho diaper satchel

    I'm a huge fan of 7AM Enfant products because they last forever. This diaper bag is no exception, after three kids and being tossed around in multiple strollers, trunks and plane floors, it's still looking fabulous. It comes with multiple pockets for you to stay super organized, plus, it includes stroller straps for easy installment onto any stroller and easy access to the inside of the bag.

    $75

    Kibou Fanny Pack

    Kibou-fanny-pack-Olive

    If you are a minimalist mom and hate carrying big bags when going for just a quick outing, this fanny pack is everything you ever dreamed of. Small, but mighty, it comes with a changing pad that will come to your rescue when you need it, a pocket for dirty clothes (or diapers if you have nowhere to throw them out) because blow outs happen when you least expect them, and a small pouch for your cellphone and keys. We've taken this one hiking (with twins!) and it's the best!

    $75.65

    Fawn Design Original

    fawn-design-diaper-bag-black

    Stylish and versatile, this bag can be worn as a cross body or as a backpack. It's roomy without being bulky, and has a total of 10 pockets for awesome storage.

    $169.99

    Baby K’tan Flex Convertible Diaper Bag

    baby-ktan-flex-diaper-bag

    Parents rave about this bag because it can be worn three ways: as a messenger, on the shoulder, or as a backpack. But beyond versatility, the Baby K'tan Flex is all about hidden storage solutions, with nine handy pockets and a built-in insulated cooler big enough to hold roughly three 8-ounce bottles and a sippy cup. If you've ever left the house for hours on end and needed to keep a lot of milk chilled, this is the bag for you.

    $59.99

    Rose in April Raphael Heart Diaper Bag Khaki

    Raphael Heart Diaper Bag Khaki

    If you want a diaper bag that can double as your own personal weekender, this is it. It's a practical everyday bag, with two slim exterior pockets that you can slide small items into, and a coated cotton waterproof interior punctuated by roomy pockets. Who says diaper bags should only be for diapers?!

    $95

    Luli Bebé Monaco Diaper Bag 

    Luli-Beb\u00e9-monaco-diaper-bag-caramel

    With its top-loading design and stylish silhouette, the newly launched Monaco from Luli Bebé is as functional as it is gorgeous. It's got nine pockets to keep you organized and knob base feet to keep it clean and upright when you set it down. And while it may look luxe, it doesn't mean it's fragile! The exterior can easily be wiped down with a damp cloth.

    $159

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    To my friends who had kids before me: I am sorry I didn’t know

    But now that I'm a mother, I do know. And I promise to pay it forward.

    I have never felt more fiercely loved than in the days, weeks and months after my baby girl was born. I felt immense love from everyone in my life, but the love I felt from other mothers was different. It came from deep-seeded understanding and empathy. It came from heartfelt celebration and excitement.

    It came from a place that only another mother can relate to.


    I recall one very emotional day when my daughter was about a week old. I had been going through the throes of triple feeding coupled with the height of what I assume you would call the baby blues.

    My sister sat on the couch with me as I painstakingly tried to pump through severe engorgement, and as she rubbed my shoulders, encouraging me to make it through just one more feeding session, I broke down in tears and told her I was so sorry.

    She looked at me shocked. Why, exactly, was I apologizing?

    It is so simple to see now—in those moments of raw motherhood, my sister was able to love me in a way that no one else could because she had been there before.

    While feeling overwhelmed with gratitude to have her in my life, I suddenly felt so much sadness that I hadn't been able to love my sister in the same way when she was walking through early motherhood.

    And so many moments followed that one, moments that made me feel immensely lucky to be surrounded by what can only be described as the best humans on earth, followed by the realization that I wish I could have done so much more, and felt so much more, for my dear friends in their early days of motherhood.

    So, to my friends who had kids before me: I am sorry.

    To my sister who tried for months to breastfeed her son and spent countless hours with lactation consultants and feeding groups, I am sorry I didn't understand how something as simple as feeding your child could make you feel like a failure. I am sorry that I did not wrap you in the biggest hug every day and tell you that you are a great mom and that if you need to cry about it, it is okay.

    To my friend with the baby in the NICU, I am sorry I didn't realize that behind the text saying you were "okay" and "didn't need anything," that nothing would've made a bigger difference than a warm meal and hot coffee dropped off to the front desk of the hospital. I knew you were a strong warrior mom (all NICU moms are), but now I know that even warrior moms need someone listening to what they aren't saying.

    To my friends who lost their sweet babies before they arrived, I am so sorry that I never knew how much you could love someone you have never met. I am sorry that I couldn't even come close to imagining your pain and sadness until I felt my own daughter wiggle in my belly, and even then, I still couldn't. Saying I am sorry will never be enough to encompass the pain you are feeling, so I hope saying "I love you" will let you know I am here.

    To my friends with the sick children, I am sorry I never fully understood the heart-wrenching agony of seeing your child in pain until I saw my own heart beating outside my body in my beautiful daughter. You are the bravest type of mom there is, and I know there is nothing you wouldn't sacrifice for your child. You hold up the world, but when you need someone to hold you up, I am here.

    To my friend who confided in me that she was struggling with postpartum depression, I am sorry I did not know just how heavy that anxiety felt on your heart. I am sorry I didn't understand the darkness you experienced every night when you went to bed and the desperation of wondering when it would all go away.

    To my friend who sent me the Starbucks card and heartfelt message on my first day back from maternity leave, I am sorry I didn't take more time to check in with you when you came back to work. I loved looking at photos of your beautiful baby and hearing about her life, but I should've spent more time checking in on you and making sure you felt loved and appreciated, especially as you made the adjustment back to work.

    These wonderful, beautiful women have taught me so much. And while I didn't know, I do now. My understanding was almost instantaneous the moment I became a mom, and the sisterhood of motherhood has carried me through the difficult times and celebrated alongside me during the good.

    To be loved without pretense or judgment is what this sisterhood is all about, and you just don't know until you experience it for yourself.

    I am sorry I didn't know, but I promise to pay it forward each and every day.

    This this story was originally published on May 24, 2018. It has been updated.

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