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What your zodiac sign says about your parenting style 💫

When you’re becoming a parent for the first time, so much is unknown: Will you be the confident mom who doesn’t second-guess her decisions or the one who stays up at night to overthink things for the third time? Will you have strict expectations for your children’s behavior or encourage them to find their own ways? Will you be the mom who sets up playdates with carefully crafted snack options for the kids or the one who can barely make school drop-off in time?


With so many variables, it would sure be nice to have some hint as to how you’ll parent—and understanding your zodiac sign may help.

“Astrology allows a symbolic way to understand yourself,” popular YouTube astrologer Nadiya Shah tells Motherly. “It’s an opportunity to consider who you are, and be honest with yourself about your strengths and weaknesses.”

The benefit to knowing this is that you can really lean into your powers, parenting coach and astrologer Tara Vogel tells Motherly.

“If you do your sign well, you’ll feel confident and a strong sense of vigor and vitality in your life—quite important to do the tough job of being a mom,” Vogel says.

Regardless of whether you’re an astrology skeptic or a believer, there is something undeniably fun about considering just what your sun sign may reveal about your personality as a parent.

Here are the super powers and downfalls the different zodiac signs may offer moms:

Aries (March 21 to April 19)

The first sign in the Western astrological order, the symbol of a ram is well-suited to the Aries mom—who is likely passionate and determined to help her children excel.

The Aries mama should just be careful not to make all the decisions for her children. Shah says, “They may need to watch an emphasis on competitiveness, or being too ‘all in’, as children will benefit from figuring some things out on their own.”

To feel balanced in her own life, the Aries mama should also be aware of when she’s on the edge of burning out, Vogel adds.

“As an Aries mom, you have so much drive, focus and ambition, just don’t let it—or that competitive feistiness—get the best of you,” Vogel says. “You need lots of physical activity to feel balanced.”

Taurus (April 20 to May 20)

Although the Taurus symbol is a bull, the typical mama born in late April or early May likely won’t take any of it thanks to their focused and goal-oriented personalities.

But, when those goals are met, Taurus moms are quick to shower their children with rewards. Shah adds, “The key here is to ensure the intrinsic value of the task, doing something for the inherent reward of it being a job well done.”

Thanks to those strong work-ethics, Taurus mamas may also be prone to getting down on themselves when things don’t go their way. But Vogel explains the earth and music are two of the Taurus mama’s “biggest teachers,” so it may help to break out of the funk by going on a walk or listening to a favorite song.

Gemini (May 21 to June 20)

Gemini moms will be the first to get down and engage in playtime with their children and love nothing more than good, connecting conversations with their kids.

Although Vogel says the Gemini mom will never struggle to have a fun time with her kids, she does need to remember the parent’s job is also to provide structure. She adds, “Give them predictability, boundaries and use lots of your patience with them and you’ll reap the benefits.”

Cancer (June 21 to July 22)

It’s no coincidence if many of the mamas in your baby-wearing group have the Cancer sign as they value attachment the most of all zodiac signs.

“They throw themselves into the role and are the most likely to strongly identify with their role as a parent,” she says. “But they actually make better moms when they maintain some sense of independence and of themselves. Strive not to take being a mom so seriously, and it’ll be a more enjoyable journey.”

Vogel adds that while being a mama may come very natural to those born under the Cancer sign, it’s essential to still give those bear cubs a little space to explore.

Leo (July 23 to August 22)

Leo mamas are likely to thrive in the role—as long as they recognize parenting is about more than holding power. “Ultimately, approaching parenting with some humility will allow them to see how your child is teaching you as much as you are them,” Shah explains.

To find that balance, Vogel recommends taking time to recharge and step back from parenting on a daily basis. And as a sign that soaks up the sun, she suggests aiming to get outdoors as often as possible.

Virgo (August 23 to September 22)

Virgo moms have incredible memories and attention to detail—with the pitfall coming when they get too focused on small matters.

“Either you have your family on a very efficient schedule or you get caught up in judging yourself harshly against other moms and how they manage their families and feel like you’re always falling short,” Vogel says. “It’s helpful to lighten up by going with the flow as often as you can.”

Virgo moms should also take care to give grace to others in their lives. “You have high standards for yourself that other moms don’t have,” Vogel adds. “ Just don’t get into the trap of judging them for it. Celebrate your own desire for quality and excellence.”

Libra (September 23 to October 22)

Libra moms don’t have to try hard to see the beauty in the world. It’s just the matter of keeping daily operations moving that may be a challenge.

“Libra moms enjoy creating a serene and beautiful environment for their children. They might be inclined towards creating memorable, social moments,” Shah says. “While these things do matter, consider how the nitty gritty has it own beauty as well.”

You’re also likely to have a solid relationship—as Vogel says Libra moms thrive in partnerships as long as they still remember to stand up for themselves.

Scorpio (October 23 to November 21)

Scorpio mamas are in it to win it—just like in all aspects of life. But when it comes to parenting, a mama born under the Scorpio sign has the advantage of intuition.

“You have a lot of strength and will power which will serve you well as you navigate the ins and outs of motherhood,” Vogel explains. “You’re not afraid to have those tough conversations with your kids—think changing bodies and sex.”

She cautions not to take things too seriously, adding, “A gift you can give children and ultimately yourself is to ease up on the need to want to control things. “

Sagittarius (November 22 to December 21)

A Sagittarius mama has probably always liked to follow the rules and now expects the same of her children. “This is wonderful, but at the same time, be mindful not to be too dogmatic in your thinking or your rules,” Shah says. “Morality is about wrong and right, and doesn’t have to follow a specific set of rules as its only expression.”

At the same time, you’re probably a fan of spontaneity and fun. Your children are bound to have amazing memories from the travel and unique experiences you’ve shared.

Capricorn (December 22 to January 19)

Capricorn moms will be the first to wish for more hours in the day—as they are extremely ambitious and eager to check all items off the to-do list. When it comes to parenting, this can set an impossible pace, so be sure to schedule in some downtime.

“You may find yourself worrying about things more often than feels good to you. You are pretty hard on yourself,” Vogel says. “Getting outside and putting your bare feet on the earth can be restorative and help you to relax.  Just know, Capricorn mama, that you are doing a much better job than you think you are!”

Aquarius (January 20 to February 18)

Prone to eccentricities and thinking outside the box, a mom born under the Aquarius sign will encourage her kids to chase their wildest dreams.

“They key here is to ensue your child also feels a sense of stability in their process,” Shah says. “There are times when you’ll have to embrace being the boss, while finding the balance between setting the rules and explaining the value of them to your children.”

Pisces (February 19 to March 20)

Creative Pisces moms will never struggle to come up with amazing bedtime stories or to foster deep connections with their kids—so be sure to feed that sense of imagination on a regular basis. (Not hard with kids!)

Vogel advises not to get too lost in the role of parenting, as alone time is also essential to Pisces moms.

“If you don’t do this on a regular basis, you’ll feel the need to escape into something that may not really serve you—think chocolate, wine, shopping or Facebook,” she says. “Prioritizing self-care is important for a Piscan mama and will teach your kids so much by seeing their mom tend to her delicate and beautiful self.”

Each of the 12 zodiac signs offer unique strengths to mamas—so at the very least, let this be another reminder of how amazing you are!

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When we consider all the skills our kids will need to succeed in the future, what comes to mind? Perhaps creativity, tech skills, or an excellent understanding of math might be at the top of many parents' lists. Social-emotional skills, like empathy, compassion, or the ability to understand another person's viewpoint may not be the ones you thought of right away, but deep down you know they matter.

We've all had those co-workers who didn't know how to listen to our ideas or friends who couldn't compromise with others. We know that in the work world and in our personal life, emotional skills are key to developing and maintaining healthy relationships.

If you are the parent of a toddler, you know that young children are inherently self-centered. It's not some faulty aspect of their character or a misstep of parenting skills. Young children simply do not have the brain maturity to consider another person's perspective or needs just yet—their brain physically is not ready to handle that kind of mental work.

However, child development research shows us that we can do a few things along the developmental path to help foster social-emotional skills in our kids. With a little help from us, our kids' brains can develop with meaningful connections that tune them into the feelings of others.

Here's how:

1. Treat others how you want your kids to treat others.

How we talk to our kids becomes their internal dialogue. We know from research that this goes for emotional skills as well. A recent study showed that when parents talk to their kids more about how other people might be feeling, the kids had better perspective-taking abilities—the ability to see a situation from another person's point of view.

This, of course, is the basis of many emotional skills, especially empathy. Just by talking about another person's feelings, kids begin to develop those crucial brain connections that help them develop empathy.

It's worth pointing out that very young children under ages 3-4 do not have the brain maturity to really understand another person's perspective. They lack a crucial skill that psychologists call Theory of Mind, meaning they can't understand the mind of another person.

However, our urgings and thoughtful phrasing to point out how another person might be feeling can only help them down this developmental path. Then, once their little brain matures, they will be in the habit of hearing and understanding the feelings of others.

2. Model positive emotional behavior in daily life.

It's probably not surprising to learn that how we react to our kids' feelings influences their emotional development. When your child gets upset, do you get angry or ruffled by their big emotions? We are all human, of course, so sometimes our kids' emotions are the exact triggers that fuel our big feelings, too. However, if we can remain the calm in the emotional storm for our kids, their development will benefit. Through modeling emotional regulation, over time our kids will learn how to self-regulate as well.

One study, in fact, showed that toddlers whose parents exhibited anger or over-reacted to tantrums were likely to have more tantrums and negative emotionality by the end of the study. However, the opposite dynamic can happen, too. Parents who model firm, but calm emotional regulation help their kids learn these skills as well.

3. Don’t be afraid to show your emotions.

Many times, we feel that one of our main jobs as a parent is to protect our children from the big, often overwhelming emotions of adults. For instance, we try not to break down crying or become red-faced with anger in front of our kids. It just feels too big for them to handle and perhaps not developmentally appropriate.

As they mature, however, older kids are able to handle a bit more discussion and expression of honest emotions. Have you noticed that kids usually pick up on the fact that you are upset even if you try to hide it? Kids are naturally curious and, many times, very sensitive to the emotional tenor at home. If they are developmentally ready, this can be a good time to have more discussions about emotions and how to handle them.

For example, my 9-year-old is playing a lot of baseball this summer and always wants me to pitch to him so he can practice batting. Now, I am not a very skilled player so my pitches often go off course or are too weak. He had gotten in the habit of correcting my pitching or (more likely) complaining about it every time we played.

After repeated experiences with this, I was not only annoyed but it also sort of hurt my feelings—so I finally told him how I felt. Guess what? His behavior at practice time changed dramatically! The mere fact of him realizing that his mom has feelings too really made him think about his words more carefully.

These types of interaction can become part of your "emotion coaching." It may sound silly but it can make a big impact for kids, especially as they grow older and are more able to really understand the emotional lesson. On some level, it's nice that our kids think we are superheroes, but it's also crucial that they understand that we are still human, with real feelings.

The magic of helping our kids develop empathy doesn't happen in well-planned lessons or elaborate activities. The real magic happens in the small, simple interactions and discussions we have with our kids each day.

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In the moments after we give birth, we desperately want to hear our baby cry. In the middle of the night a few months later it's no longer exactly music to our ears, but those cries aren't just telling us that baby needs a night feeding: They're also giving us a hint at what our children may sound like as kindergarteners, and adults.

New research published in the journal Biology Letters suggests the pitch of a 4-month-old's cry predicts the pitch they'll use to ask for more cookies at age five and maybe even later on as adults.

The study saw 2 to 5-month olds recorded while crying. Five years later, the researchers hit record again and chatted with the now speaking children. Their findings, combined with previous work on the subject, suggest it's possible to figure out what a baby's voice will sound like later in life, and that the pitch of our adult voices may be traceable back to the time we spend in utero. Further studies are needed, but scientists are very interested in how factors before birth can impact decades later.

"In utero, you have a lot of different things that can alter and impact your life — not only as a baby, but also at an adult stage," one of the authors of the study, Nicolas Mathevon, told the New York Times.

The New York Times also spoke with Carolyn Hodges, an assistant professor of anthropology at Boston University who was not involved in the study. According to Hodges, while voice pitch may not seem like a big deal, it impacts how we perceive people in very real ways.

Voice pitch is a factor in how attractive we think people are, how trustworthy. But why we find certain pitches more or less appealing isn't known. "There aren't many studies that address these questions, so that makes this research especially intriguing," Hodges said, adding that it "suggests that individual differences in voice pitch may have their origins very, very early in development."

So the pitch of that midnight cry may have been determined months ago, and it may determine part of your child's future, too. There are still so many things we don't know, but as parents we do know one thing: Our babies cries (as much as we don't want to hear them all the time) really are something special.

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Sometimes it can feel like you never get a minute to even finish a thought—let alone a to-do list. When your day is packed with caretaking, your own needs get pushed back. So when you finally get to lie down at the end of the day, all those thoughts are waiting for you. While we haven't figured out the secret to keeping you from over-analyzing every.single.thing. (sorry, mama!), we do believe you must carve out time for you. Because that rest is just as important—and you've certainly earned it.

XO,

#TeamMotherly

PS: We spoke to Jessica Alba and she gave us the lowdown on why she stopped breastfeeding, and Nordstrom is having their anniversary sale until August 5th. Here's everything we want!

My Instagram feed has been full of pictures of friends that their kids to the beach. I get it, I like the beach a lot. But the forest and the mountains are my real loves.

The way the damp leaves smell in the morning. The peace of walking underneath a canopy of trees. The sound of firewood crackling at night. Sigh, heaven.

I also grew up camping with my family and have done some intense hiking, backpacking and search and rescue. So it's kind of in my blood—I wear my frostbite scars with honor.

So I couldn't wait to get my future kids out into nature (minus the frostbite). I had visions of us hiking to a stream, swimming and splashing all day, then cooking a big meal over a campfire as we sing songs and laugh.

Then, I actually became a parent. Of three kids, actually, all of whom are still very young… and a dog… and a husband who doesn't really like camping.

Despite the realization that it wouldn't be exactly as I planned, this summer we finally decided to take our first camping trip as a family.

Here is what I learned:

1. Set the bar low

I had to remind myself over and over again that this trip would not live up to my expectations. I know this sounds like a bummer way to start a trip, but it really helped. I have the tendency to over-plan and get really (really) excited about things. This is not a bad quality, but it can lend itself to disappointment when things don't go as hoped. I didn't want us to leave the trip feeling like it was a failure in any way.

This trip was a success, and a big moment for our family, no matter how it turned out.

Instead of forcing activities or memories, I forced myself to just… be. Not expecting the trip to be magical opened us up to appreciate the unexpected moments of magic as they occurred naturally, without being forced.

This got harder, of course, when our car got stuck in the mud (true story), and we had to wait three hours for AAA to arrive. But when our kids talk about the camping trip now they still squeal with delight as they recount the story of the tow truck coming. You're welcome (I guess)?

2. We made it really easy

I put my camping ego aside, and we took a lot of shortcuts on this first trip. We didn't stay in a tent but rented a barebones cabin instead. For dinner, we ordered a pizza. And we let the kids play on our phones for a little bit in the evening.

Those things didn't make for a truly authentic experience, but goodness, they really helped. I have started to realize that there is no shame in making things easy, especially when you have little kids. And they didn't know any different. As far as they are concerned, we hiked the Appalachian Trail and gathered all our own food from the earth.

This was a lazy camping trip, for sure—and that was exactly what we needed.

3. I over-prepped for safety so I could calm down

I have hiked and camped in the White Mountains of New Hampshire in February—this was not that. At any given moment on our trip, an ambulance could have easily reached us, and we were only a few minutes away from a hospital at any point. But it made me feel much better to know that we were safe and ready for anything that should happen.

We bought a first aid kit, a survival kit, too many flashlights and bottled water. I was really big on everyone wearing good footwear and teaching them how to walk carefully on uneven terrain.

We also used the opportunity to teach about other areas, like water safety. Rita Goldberg of the British Swim School recommends "[teaching kids] to avoid water hazards and to not approach a fountain, river, pool or lake without an adult's supervision and permission."

We also incorporated their "Water Watcher" program, which assigns a "badge of responsibility" to one adult at all times, who maintains a constant watch over the kids while they are near water.

These easy steps, that we decided on ahead of time, made me feel much more relaxed, and therefore better able to enjoy our time.

This trip took some emotional adjustments on my part. It wasn't glamorous, or particularly exciting. But that was exactly what it needed to be. Emily Glover wrote that "by getting away from the distractions of home and focusing on each other...we're reminded of what really matters."

We found that in the woods—together.

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